Friday, October 10, 2003

Where's the Outrage Now?

In the California recall, the right wing's moralistic masters of attack choked on their own partisanship. These are the people who praised the "courage" of anyone who reported anything embarrassing about the sex life of a certain former president. Then they painted all who did not respond with indignation as "apologists" complicit in America's moral decline and the "death of outrage."

Guess who the apologists were this time? All of a sudden it was Arnold Schwarzenegger being accused of groping, fondling and humiliating women. Oh, yes, there was outrage on the right. But it was directed at the Los Angeles Times for investigating and reporting on the charges. The same folks who had insisted that our leaders should be moral exemplars were suddenly aghast when a news organization explored the "character" of, well, er, a Republican. Fox's Bill O'Reilly on Schwarzenegger: "The Los Angeles Times is out to get him, to destroy him. . . . Most guys have done dopey things with women." Bill O'Reilly on Clinton during impeachment: "The American people have a right to know everything there is to know about President Clinton's behavior."


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