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Friday, February 05, 2010

Wrongful Shaming

by digby

Sarah Palin really isn't ready for prime time. She hasn't yet learned that consistency is the hobgoblin of little liberals:

On the eve of a campaign appearance in Texas for Rick Perry, Sarah Palin served notice that she’s not happy the governor's top political adviser used the word “retarded” to describe campaign logistics.

Dave Carney, Perry's long-time political guru, used the word several times in a conference call about arrangements for the first gubernatorial debate last month sponsored by KERA.

During the call among campaign representatives, Carney complained that one candidates' holding room would be in a different building than the debate.

"That's just retarded,” Carney said. "That's the most retarded thing I've ever heard."

Palin's youngest son Trig has Down syndrome. The former vice presidential candidate has written on her Facebook page that using the word "retarded" is "a slur on all God's children" with developmental disabilities.

When The Wall Street Journal reported that White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel used the term during a closed-door meeting with liberal Democrats and others, Palin called Emanuel's choice of words "unacceptable" and said he should be fired. Emanuel has since apologized.

Palin's spokeswoman, Meg Stapleton, condemned Carney's remarks but did not call for the Perry consultant to lose his job.

"Gov. Palin believes crude and demeaning name-calling at the expense of others is disrespectful," Stapleton said.

The proper professional conservative way to deal with these things is to say that Rahm Emmanuel's use of the word was much more egregious because he didn't apologize immediately, whereas the governor's aide was very contrite and prayed for forgiveness once he was informed of the error of his ways, and that's all any of God's imperfect children can do.

But Sarah has even bigger problems:

A Texas source notes that conservative rocker Ted Nugent, who will be opening up for Perry and Palin this weekend, also throws the word around.

He told Royal Flush Magazine in December that hunting is "the last pure perfect function of mankind.

"That’s killing deer and eatin’ ‘em," Nugent said. "It’s perfect. It’s untouchable on all levels. Unless you’re retarded."

Now Sarah has claimed that she can field dress a moose, so she has to side with Ted on the "perfection" of hunting. But he's not going to apologize for using that word, no matter what. Soooo, she'll have to resort to the old, "he was just making a joke," which isn't exactly going to endear her to the advocates for the disabled, but will be just fine with her teabagger followers (all of whom by the way, probably use the word. In fact, according to Levi Johnston, she does too.)

Sarah has not learned a fundamental rule of wingnut sanctimony: you use military and religious correctness to shame liberals, not political correctness. Otherwise, you get tripped up by all the instances of conservative bigotry and rudeness toward the less fortunate. It's not that hypocrisy is a problem necessarily, but it muddies the waters. Calling them traitors or godless heathens is much cleaner.

h/t to EK