When someone brought the Alinsky playbook in and had everyone read it, the light went on. That's their strategy. I see now how we have to play.
After the 2008 election, John Ziegler met with Sarah Palin and showed her all of the things that were going on in the news media during her campaign for vice president. She was astounded. She wasn't surprised because she was experiencing the media bias first hand, but she was amazed at how low the journalism profession had sunk to undermine her candidacy. Palin told the Daily Caller that McCain's campaign did not fight back when the media portrayed them and particularly her unfavorably. That's the key point.
Conservatives now understand that they must fight back, even if it means being better at playing a game with repugnant rules. Remember, their opponents won in 2006 and 2008. That gives them the right to make those rules. But don't fret about the nasty rules. Conservatives understand that they can beat the liberals at their own game. And, conservatives have an edge: the truth is on their side.
Let's look at the anatomy of two smear campaigns. In order to destroy Sarah Palin, opponents had to make things up about her. They had to file ethics complaints with no standing and have the media ignore the numerous dismissals. She eventually resigned her position. In order to destroy Van Jones, opponents had to tell the truth about him. They had to play videos of actual things he had said and point out that the media was ignoring this. He eventually resigned his position.
Once I knew conservatives would be willing to get their hands dirty, I knew they could win. I read the Daily Caller coverage of the Journolist story with tears of joy in my eyes because it was at that point that I truly felt it in my heart that conservatives have what it takes to save the philosophy and advance the cause. We understood that the liberals own the field and they make the rules now. When we beat them at their own game, we get the field back and then we get to make the rules.
We are better, we are stronger and we are faster than they are. They don't have a Sarah Palin. They don't have a Glenn Beck or a Rush Limbaugh. They got some dufus who used to be a sportscaster firing off their shots. They got some girl who looks like a 12 year old boy in his pajamas smirking into the camera every night after she makes a snarky comment about Sarah Palin.
And before you attack me for demeaning Keith Olbermann or making fun of Rachel Maddow's looks, may I submit exhibit A: Keith Olbermann calling Palin an idiot (editor's note: I'd need at least 22 links here, so you get the picture). Now may I submit exhibit B: Rachel Maddow showing up for work in her pajamas to make fun of Palin making fun of bloggers in pajamas.
Some may say we are lowering themselves to their level, but the last time I checked, using equal or greater force to stop someone from assaulting you worked a lot better than making believe you weren't getting hit.
When we win, we will keep the liberals at bay by holding our extended hand out on the top of their heads as they keep flailing away at the air between us while we talk like adults. But for now, we have to punch, counter punch and float like a butterfly, sting like a bee. We are in the ring now and we must win the match before we can take the trunks off and put on our nice suits again.
You would think Obama, the master of the campaign pick and roll, would be impressed at Andrew Breitbart's form on the Shirley Sherrod story. If you remember, when Sarah Palin resigned her governorship, the media cited portions of her resignation speech out of context to portray her as someone who couldn't take the media heat. Because so many ethics violations had been lodged against her, they assumed there was a federal indictment pending. The whole speech was out there as was Shirley Sherrod's whole speech. Therein lies the technique. The media could take the portion of the speech that made her look racist and leave out the reason why she said it, just like they left out the real reason why Palin resigned. And if responding to false accusations of racism against the Tea Party means showing a true story of a New Black Panther standing in front of a polling place with a baton in his hand or countering an NAACP smear with a counter smear then count me in on this game because it's starting to get fun again.
We fell for the hidden ball trick in the 2008 presidential election. Obama fell for it when the Shirley Sherrod story came out. He can't be mad about that, can he? You'd think his side would take it as a compliment - you know, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. I mean, it was their kind of play, right?
So today, Barack Obama went on the view and blamed the media for the Shirley Sherrod firing. And they say the president doesn't feel our pain.
Don't Hate the Player, Mr. President. Hate the game.