John Scotus of The Tree of Mamre blog has written a brilliant essay on the dangers of conservative bloggers associating themselves with some conspiracies and/or their proponents. John’s point is that some of these anti-Obama conspiracy proponents may in fact be liberals trying to bait conservatives to climb on a given conspiracy bandwagon for the sole purpose of making conservatives appear as some wacko fringe element. That’s right. He is suggesting that here may be a hidden conspiracy behind the conspiracy being touted.
John has done a remarkable job of framing the issue and supporting his arguments. Here is an excerpt from John’s essay but you will want to follow the link above and read the entire piece.
… (Indeed, an image search on Google for “Obama + Anti-Christ” gets 2,290,000 hits, and a text search for the samegets 3,130,000 hits.) Obama is very wrong about many things and needs to be defeated in 2012, but he is not a monster–he is a manifestly flawed human being who should have never become president. Those who make another person into a monster run the real risk of becoming monsters themselves.
Many people say that we should ignore Birthers and people obsessed with various conspiracy theories, but I disagree.
First, we are known by whom we associate with and whom we tolerate in our midst. Just as Obama brands himself a fellow traveler by not repudiating the Communist Party of the USA’s endorsement of his presidency, if we do not repudiate the people in our midst who are peddling poison, then we become fellow travelers with them.
Second, there is the problem of caricatures and straw men. The Democrats and the MSM have done a great job of dismissing conservatives by presenting a caricature of who they are and what they believe, and then ridiculing it. Obama himself delights in using the straw man in his speeches and debates, and did so quite effectively in 2008.
The problem is, when people treat hyperbole as though it were truth, play fast and loose with the facts, weave dark and unprovable conspiracy theories, and engage in unsubstantiated rumor-mongering, it plays right into Obama’s hand. Obama and the Democrats no longer have to respond to real and substantive critiques of their policies, they just have to ridicule the caricature and refute the straw man–a caricature and straw man readily prepared for them by some bloggers and people on Twitter who call themselves conservatives, but who may well in fact be agent provocateurs who have set about to ruin the credibility of the conservative movement.
There is much, much more. But here is his final thought:
In short, there are enough reasons to be against Obama and the Democrats without having to make things up. There is one–and only one way–that Obama can be defeated in 2012: By sticking to the real issues at hand. No one will care on election day where Obama was born or even if he is a space alien–they will care about whether his policies seem to be working, and what direction he appears to be taking the country.
This is what we need to focus on.
I think John makes a lot of sense. We conservative bloggers need to be careful about what stories we repeat and who we quote.
Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?