Tuesday, December 08, 2009


Michelle Malkin and other right-wing noisemakers, including some GOP senators, have denounced Harry Reid for comparing health care reform to the abolition of slavery:

... Speaking on the Senate floor this morning, Reid said "Instead of joining us on the right side of history, all the Republicans can come up with is, 'slow down, stop everything, let's start over.' If you think you've heard these same excuses before, you're right."

He continued "When this country belatedly recognized the wrongs of slavery, there were those who dug in their heels and said 'slow down, it's too early, things aren't bad enough' ...

Michael Steele thinks Reid should step down from his Senate leadership position. I wonder if he thinks Newt Gingrich should have been denied his leadership position in the House back in '94:

"I clearly fascinate them," Gingrich said of the Democrats. "I'm much more intense, much more persistent, much more willing to take risks to get it done. Since they think it is their job to run the plantation, it shocks them that I'm actually willing to lead the slave rebellion." [Washington Post, 10/20/94]

The phrase "liberal plantation" gets 22,900 Google hits; righties who've used the phrase include Jack Kemp, Peggy Noonan, Dinesh D'Souza, Thomas Sowell, and the Wall Street Journal editorial page, not to mention, um, Michelle Malkin. Bob Novak, Armstrong Williams, Rush Limbaugh, and others have preferred "Democratic plantation."

And I guess it's OK to compare health care and slavery the other way, because I recall no outrage when Scripps-Howard wingnut Star Parker denounced the "government health care plantation." Parker likes this metaphor a lot -- in 2003 she published a book entitled Uncle Sam's Plantation: How Big Government Enslaves America's Poor and What We Can Do About It. If there were howls of outrage from her fellow righties, I'm not aware of them.

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