Ken Collins: Missed opportunity

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Political historians have often called the last several years in politics the most divisive since the period leading up to the Civil War in the 1840s and ’50s. The differences now are at a chasmic proportion. Of course, there have always been rocks thrown back and forth, but things took a steep incline with the “swiftboaters” back in 2004. And the ridiculous decision by the U.S. Supreme Court added gas to the fires by bringing the advent of the “super-PACs,” that have no accountability.

So I find it unfortunate what is about to happen in Steamboat. Consider young Republicans or independents who have not participated in our democratic process yet. They, like us years ago, have hopes of making a difference. They might like to think that they could help slow down the vitriol between the two parties. They probably look to their local party leaders for, well, leadership. What they get instead is Ann Coulter, one of today’s biggest symbols of discord in America. She’s coming here, I suppose, to gather the troops and bang the drums of enthusiasm. But Coulter is someone who epitomizes the problems.

The event’s organizer laughs that those who don’t like her are probably the ones on the receiving end of her barbs. That pretty much includes everyone to the left of Genghis Khan. The most common words you’ll hear from the guest speaker are “stupid,” “ignorant” and “idiots.” I realize Anne Coulter is an entertainer and a bookseller who thrives on contention. That’s fine for her dark and narrow world. But to bring her here at a time when we’re trying to inspire people to do their democratic responsibility is a head-shaker. What will she do for the new Republicans and the fence-sitters? Is she really the one who the local GOP thinks can inspire the voters to try and heal our country? I can’t remember when hatred was a positive asset. I guess Rush Limbaugh was busy. Too bad. I would think there were many other respectable Republicans who would have been a better choice. Looks like a missed opportunity to me.

Ken Collins

Oak Creek

Comments

Fred Duckels 2 years, 7 months ago

Ken, If we are to talk about dividing the country, what about our president whose campaign theme for this next election is based on class warfare. He does not talk about any of his accomplishments such as Obamacare because they are so unpopular. Compared with Obama, Ann Coulter is but a drop in the bucket. Obama's bully pulpit coupled with his"occupy minions" mission is to sow unrest in order to hold the presidency. Ann's humor is funny because of the hypocricy of the left, that she so aptly points out. When I watch the evening news Obama is quoted verbatim and not questioned. The polls show that his class warfare is working, if not he would turn elsewhere to look for an advantage. The left thrives on empathy compared to the right that uses logic, this is what makes Ann's job so easy. George Soro's prediction is that we will see much more violence, what does he know?

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Marie Matta 2 years, 7 months ago

Fred, you talk about empathy as if it were a bad word. Empathy is at the heart of Christianity (at least the form of Christianity I know), the very religion that your friends on the right, including Ann Coulter, wear on their sleeve. That is where the hypocrisy lies!

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Brian Kotowski 2 years, 7 months ago

I find I'm entertained by Coulter about as often as I'm irritated by her. I love smart-a$$ed satire, and she has few peers in that regard. But provocation for its own sake gets tiresome.

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sledneck 2 years, 7 months ago

mcminsteamboat, If you see hypocricy only on the christian right (and there is some there) you are blind.

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Fred Duckels 2 years, 7 months ago

According to the liberal Washington Post Obama is the most polarizing president. Ever!

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tcb 2 years, 7 months ago

Ann Coulter's sarcasm is every bit as entertaining as PJ O'Rourkes is. Lighten up and take it for what it's worth. TV shows like "The Bachelor" are more responsible for making a joke of our country than Ann Coulter.

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paul potyen 2 years, 7 months ago

Fred, are you willing to consider the "fact" that "Obama is the most polarizing president ever" might at least in part due to the behavior of the right in government and in its avalanche of anti-Obama propaganda?

"Those who manipulate the unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. We are governed, our minds molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested largely by men we have never heard of. In almost every act of our lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires that control the public mind." -Edward Bernays, Pioneer of Corporate PR and Propaganda

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Fred Duckels 2 years, 7 months ago

potyen, So you are saying that the president and the media are being overwhelmed by a few powerful dudes. Poor guy.

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George Fargo 2 years, 7 months ago

Fred – I seldom check out the sound bites that are thrown out in comments and emails, but your assertion that Obama was the “most polarizing President ever” intrigued me. I voted for the man and will again, but he has disappointed me by being the opposite of polarizing. I wish he would grow a pair and tell Congress where to stick it. So, I just had to find out why someone would consider him “polarizing”.

Sure enough, when you get by the headline, the story is entirely different. This was a blog written by a couple of political reporters commenting on the yearly Gallup poll of presidential approval by democrats and republicans. I would argue that this does not so much measure how much a President polarizes people as how much a President is polarized by the people.

That aside, the conclusion was that Obama was the most polarizing President serving a 3rd year. NOT ever. If you look at the data in the blog, George W has the three most polarizing years ever – EVER. In fact, he has five of the 10 most polarizing years in history. Obama pales by comparison. And if you look at the numbers, there are only two reasons why Bush doesn’t have the top 8 to himself. The 9/11 bump in 2001-2003 and the fact that he was so bad in his later years, that even Republicans disapproved of him.

But the real story is that the most polarizing years are the most recent, regardless of President. Just a sign of the inability of the political parties to put the country first. Sad, but true.

Get the full story at: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/post/obama-the-most-polarizing-president-ever/2012/01/29/gIQAmmkBbQ_blog.html

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steamboatsconscience 2 years, 7 months ago

fred doesn't let facts get in the way of his opinion.....

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