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Friday, October 17, 2008

Reports of bloodthirsty McCain-Palin supporters are mostly exaggerated or simply false

"Tell him" was misheard by a Scranton newspaper reporter as "Kill him!" And then it was once again off to the races with nonsense about how murderous and bloodthirsty the crowds are after Gov. Palin incites them to violence. My guest-post at HughHewitt.com doesn't defend the guilty, but indicts the over-imaginative.

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[Copied here for archival purposes on November 5, 2008, from the post linked above at HughHewitt.com.]

(Guest Post by Bill Dyer a/k/a Beldar)

On my post from this past Tuesday that was entitled Sarah Palin's campaigning is infused with contagious joy, a commenter cited a report that someone, referring to Sen. Barack Obama, had shouted "Kill him!" at the Palin rally in Scranton, PA, which was the subject of my post. That prompted me to write an update in which, besides rejecting the ridiculous notion that either Gov. Palin or I condoned such actions, I pointed out that the report itself was suspicious.

Now the Secret Service agents and other law enforcement personnel who attended the Scranton rally have all denied having heard anyone shout "Kill him!" there, according to a news report yesterday from the same local paper which had been cited by the commenter here (h/t to commenter Loren at my own blog):

The Scranton Times-Tribune first reported the alleged incident on its Web site Tuesday and then again in its print edition Wednesday. The first story, written by reporter David Singleton, appeared with allegations that while congressional candidate Chris Hackett was addressing the crowd and mentioned Obama’s name a man in the audience shouted “kill him."

News organizations including ABC, The Associated Press, The Washington Monthly and MSNBC’s Countdown with Keith Olbermann reported the claim, with most attributing the allegations to the Times-Tribune story.

Agent Bill Slavoski said he was in the audience, along with an undisclosed number of additional secret service agents and other law enforcement officers and not one heard the comment.

“I was baffled,” he said after reading the report in Wednesday’s Times-Tribune.

He said the agency conducted an investigation Wednesday, after seeing the story, and could not find one person to corroborate the allegation other than Singleton.

Slavoski said more than 20 non-security agents were interviewed Wednesday, from news media to ordinary citizens in attendance at the rally for the Republican vice presidential candidate held at the Riverfront Sports Complex. He said Singleton was the only one to say he heard someone yell “kill him.”

So this was either a case of an over-eager pro-Obama imagination on the part of a single reporter, or a hearing disorder on his part, perhaps one related to Obama's own condition of being "green behind the ears."

Nevertheless, Sen. Obama played the "victim card" at last night's debate, attempting to hold John McCain responsible for mostly imaginary events that are outside Sen. McCain's or Gov. Palin's control even on the comparatively rare occasions when they have occurred. Does this guy expect to be able to pull that stuff on Putin too?

Another leftie who regularly comments here has been emailing me with accusations that my harsh words about unrepentant terrorist and currently still-dangerous education radical Bill Ayers are my attempts to "de-humanize" Ayers to set him up for violence. That, too, is troll nonsense. I would be delighted to see Ayers in prison, since by his own boastful admission, he is "free as a bird" despite being "guilty as hell" of crimes for which he's never been punished and never shown an ounce of remorse. I believe he should be shunned and held up as an example of the very worst of humanity. I have pointed him out to my own teen children as the sort of social cancer who continues to threaten their and their schoolmates' future, and the sort of unrehabilitated criminal they're unfortunately likely to find sheltered among the faculty when they attend college. But neither I nor, to my knowledge, any other critic of Sen. Obama for his long and close relationship with Ayers believes that either of them ought to be physically attacked. Making such frivolous verbal attacks on Obama or Ayers critics is nowhere close, on any proper scale of moral conduct, to Ayers' own crimes, but it does indicate a breathtaking degree of disingenuousness and/or cluelessness.

— Beldar

Posted by Beldar at 09:38 AM in 2008 Election, McCain, Obama, Palin, Politics (2008) | Permalink

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