The New McCarthyism

Hours before the Vice Presidential debate started, reporter Chris Matthews was outside the event performing citizen interviews when he came across a woman who has become known across the Internet as: The Woman Who Called Obama a Communist. Mr. Matthews asked her to explain why she called the President that, but she was unable to express anything more coherent than, “you should do your homework, buddy” to the reporter. After a few followups, hoping in vain for more detail, he finally gave up and moved on to other interviewees.

Josh Marshall’s blog, Talking Points Memo, obtained a copy of that and posted it online. This was quickly reblogged across the Internet, causing a firestorm of protest by ardent Obama supporters, and befuddled confusion by most everyone else. Where the hell had this woman gotten the idea that the President of the United States is a communist? Many asked this question, and just as routinely, called her plain stupid for believing such trash without any explanation for why.

She faced much consternation for her fifteen minutes of fame. I thought her words deserved some context. So, in response to that, I put this video together in order to better explain who had put this crazy idea in that woman’s head. It wasn’t so much the woman’s words that inspired me as it was the confusion and shock by so many that someone would utter such an idiotic statement.

Quite simply, those promulgating this absurd notion of a communist Obama are primarily professional commentators broadcasting on right wing radio and on Fox News television. And there are many of them. This video attempts to put the current right wing smear campaign against the President into the context of 1950s era McCarthyism. For what we see on television and hear on the radio isn’t just some recent example of conservative media gone crazy. There’s a history. And that history of political demagoguery of Democrats as communist and anti-American goes back to McCarthy, for he was the model upon which so many conservatives base their attacks today.

Here is my video: