Why Do People Hate Liberals?

English: Aaron Sorkin speaking at the Oxford Union

Is Aaron Sorkin really the problem with liberalism? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By Bob Cesca: It’s only slightly less frustrating to watch Fox News Channel and to listen to right-wing talk radio as it often is to observe progressives choke on their own well-meaning, but ultimately self-defeating tongues.

Seriously, the act of observing fellow liberals every day on the blogs, on The Facebook and elsewhere too often makes me want to smash my computer using a team of monkeys brandishing explosive wiffle bats. Specifically, the act of watching progressives who don’t understand the realities of American government and politics, watching progressives desperately seeking “reasonable” conservatives in some sort of futile attempt at détente, and watching hipster cool-kid progressives undermining support for the most liberal president of our time might actually make me lose my shpadoinkle, even though I generally feel pretty centered.

To be honest, I didn’t intend to get into yet another column-length rant about this topic… until I read a piece on Salon by Alex Pareene who thinks, “Aaron Sorkin is why people hate liberals.”

He’s a smug, condescending know-it-all who isn’t as smart as he thinks he is. His feints toward open-mindedness are transparently phony, he mistakes his opinion for common sense, and he’s preachy. Sorkin has spent years fueling the delusional self-regard of well-educated liberals. He might be more responsible than anyone else for the anti-democratic “everyone would agree with us if they weren’t all so stupid” attitude of the contemporary progressive movement. And age is not improving him.

First of all, I’ve just about had it with this myth that people hate liberals. Okay, sure, I get it. A lot of people hate “liberals” — the stigmatized cartoon word and the absurd commie pinko caricature painted by the right-wing media for the last 40 years. But in single-issue poll after single-issue poll, a majority or plurality of Americans are liberal. Americans are pro-choice, pro-gun control, pro-green energy, pro-taxing the rich, pro-same sex marriage, and on down the line. Contrary to cable news hacks like Chuck Todd, Harold Ford, Jr. and Mark Halperin, America is a center-left nation and, despite its self-consciousness about using the word, it’s liberal. Full stop.

However, conservatives have done a better job at combining the right-wing brand with what I consider to be the American brand. In other words, conservatives have co-opted patriotism, tenacity, independence and unwavering strength and made it their own. Of course none of that has anything to do with conservatism. Liberals could ostensibly be strong, tenacious, patriotic and independent. But we’ve given up and conceded those traits to conservatives because we’re too hip and ironic and smart to hang a flag next to our front doors or to to not back down in face of a political enemy during a debate. We’d be more successful if we could reclaim those things.

People who happen to hate liberals might hate them less if they/we were more like Sorkin and his characters: forceful, self-confident, lightning fast with a brutally salient point and occasionally gregarious (see President Bartlet). Instead of standing our ground and seizing the initiative by constructing killer frames and message discipline, we navel-gaze and wonder why people hate liberals. We worry that being Sorkin-ish might be too over-the-top or unfair or smug instead of just selling what we believe with laser precision and without letting up no matter how much the opposition screeches and pees their big-boy pants.

Even though they’re wrong on just about everything, conservatives know how to frame an issue and they know how to retain message discipline, and so they win debate after debate. They know how to connect with regular people who, if they were actually aware of Republican policies, would typically vote Democratic. Republicans/conservatives possess the courage of their convictions, even though their convictions are upside-down and contradictory across the board. Americans respond to strong, forceful arguments and concise expressions of core beliefs, but liberals don’t often provide that.

If we could just combine these traits with the truth that drives liberalism (yes, there’s a man-made climate crisis; yes, women deserve equal; yes corporations are strangling our economy, etc, etc) we might actually dominate American politics again.

Aaron Sorkin, whatever his personal flaws might be, has repeatedly illustrated how to do it, and yet I see too many liberals shying away from the forceful argument or the contentious debate because of some kind of limp, exhausted sense of futility. Ugh, Rush Limbaugh is too crazy, so let’s ignore him. Ugh, why can’t there be more David Brooks conservatives? Ugh, I might vote for Romney if he wasn’t such a liar. Ugh, Obama is a murderer because of drones. Yawn. Nap.

Like it or not, we’re engaged in an increasingly uphill battle against conservatives who might actually be regaining some ground with the help of the Citizens United decision, and we continue to respond like it’s nap time. We can’t afford to ease up on conservatives or to concede an inch of ground. And if more voters observed a progressive movement as unrelenting and as disciplined as the conservative movement, we might actually win more often.

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  • marco01

    For all the cons on here mocking Cesca, he’s dead on the money. Americans support liberal policies and positions strongly almost across the board. The problem Americans have is with the label, and that is because of the successful propaganda campaign against the label by RWers led by none other that Limbag himself.

    Americans support, strongly for most:

    Increasing taxes on the Rich
    Progressiv­­e Taxation
    Marriage Equality
    Raising the Minimum Wage
    Path to Citizenship for Undocumented Immigrants
    Universal Background Checks for All Firearm Purchases
    Opposition to Citizen’s United
    Homosexuals serving openly in the military
    The Public Option
    Social Security
    Expanding Social Security
    Medicare
    Environmen­­tal Protection­­s
    Allowing women to serve in units engaged in close ground combat
    Medical Marijuana
    Full legalization of Marijuana
    Public Education
    Publics schools with Federal involvement
    Jobs program to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure
    No crushing debt with higher education

    If you doubt any of these, pick a few and check the polls, if you have the courage.

  • SPolston

    I find it hard to describe how I feel about liberals. It’s very difficult to understand their way of thinking. For instance, we should act humane towards a murderer that killed a whole family. Put him in prison and feed him for the rest of his life, and give him medical care. WTF? These kind of people that do such crimes should be put down like a rabid dog!!!
    Yet, liberals are all for abortion to kill unborn children. The same ones that think we should be humane towards criminals. How the fk can a person think this way? How can anyone possibly be that backwards and stupid?

  • Julian Edjans

    This article is laughably absurd. I was greatly relieved when I discovered this website is entirely satire.

  • George Frayer

    I can answer this and I am a moderate Independent (Not even conservative): Liberals hate anyone who is not a Liberal or Socialist. This includes anyone whome has a conflicting belief (That they are entitled to). Liberals do not respect anyone who has there own independent opinion. They feel it should be there way or the highway and should you disagree with them…Well we all know (Racist Masculinity George Bush..Yadda Yadda). not only do they hate people that hate but they hate people whome disagreee, these people just hate in general. there build off from the kkk creating democrats that dfid a sudden 360 and went Anti-White, Anti-Male and Anti-Heterosexual. To be honest wile i support pro-choice (Within reason) i cannot name one good or wholesome aspect about Liberals, they are evil and they teach our children evil. If they had there way we would be having orgys in the street.

  • hora

    First American are pro liberals, that are a big lie.Liberals are opposite to a natural Law and all Law we have, support all criminals activities available, fraud for win, can’t see what different between wrong and right, live in hate, discriminate, promote violence, divide peoples, destroy Jobs, destroy also life, attack religion, steal money, don’t care no one,basic pure evil, now accept be KKK illegals group who was ban, anti-American, anti freedom, socialist communist, hate whites, and a list are to long. But what bother me are when a group accept are KKK and criminals ban group,easy became criminals too, and if are Justice, all liberals must ban, remove all Judges liberals and ban a Law license for life, basic remove from power all dems and pass a Law be liberals are out law and felony. I hate liberals to dead.

  • DefiantDeity

    Wow this half a$$ed article is filled with failure. You are a perfect example of why a lot of Americans can’t stand liberals. You people are delusional and are allergic to facts. Actually you liberals like to make up your own facts and try to present polls as facts. lol so pathetic.

    Also, you could not be more wrong. The majority of Americans ARE NOT pro gun control. Let me guess you cite that stupid poll about 90% want gun control right? A poll that was vague and asked a very vague question and was only polled to a thousand or so people, which has been debunked several times, yet liberals like you continue to use it as a fact. It’s hilarious to watch you liberals claim you have grass root movements when in fact they are funded by idiots like Michael Bloomberg. He gave that twat Shannon Watts 50 million to start her Mothers Desperate for Action group, then they claim its grass roots, when in reality it’s the other side that is really grass roots. You know this because the MSM tries to demean these groups daily. Groups like the NRA Alan’s 2nd Amendment Foundation. Groups that have millions of paying members. How many paying members does MDA or the Brady campaign have? A big fat ZERO!!! They count likes on Facebook as part of their members. HAHA

    I could go on to destroy the rest of your pathetic little tirade but you are not worth my time. I have bigger libtards to destroy.

    • George Frayer

      It is easy to break down why we all hate Libtards. If they say something than chances are it is a lie, if they help you than they have an ulterior motive, they spell-check what everyone says, they teach our kids to disrespect us. I think america hates Libs because of everything they are made of.

  • DaCoachK

    The writer is a nut if he believes that real Americans are Left-Wing-Kooks.

  • Jason

    A few more reasons why people hate Liberals:
    1) Their propensity to believe in demagogues & their blind adherence to the belief that large ineffective bureaucracies can solve their problems.
    2) a dismal understanding of basic economics such that liberals believe that one person’s wealth actually makes other people poor.
    3) Naïve enough to believe that a government can actually create jobs with a magic wand.
    4) The personal rights you claim to support only diminish as law, after law, after law, is passed.
    5) Oblivious to the fact that government’s involvement in cronyism with corporations, unions and special interest groups will only grow as government does -NO MATTER WHO YOU ELECT!!! – & the rights and freedoms of the individual will only diminish.
    6) A fierce ignorance of history and the damage liberal progressivism has done to the world the past 100 years. i.e. every war in the twentieth century was started by a liberal progressive: Wilson- WW1, FDR- WW2, Truman- Korean, LBJ- Vietnam, The Bush wars were only an extension of progressive foreign policy and Obama’s use of drones is only progressives finally remembering who they are.
    6) The demonization of corporations & free markets that have created all the wealth in this country (including your own) & lifted more people out of poverty that any government program ever did or could.
    7) Blind support of public social programs even though they fail…every time.

    Without getting into too much detail, this should scratch the surface ;)

    • The Last Prepper

      FDR started WW2? lol..Wow. I was about to respond to the rest of your non-sense but I refuse to sink to your level.How ignorant can you get?

      • DefiantDeity

        You were never going to respond to the rest of his comment. The only thing you can do is the typical liberal rules for radicals BS.

        • The Last Prepper

          I’ve never read rules for radicals. I just go with my gut. When someone says something stupid like “FDR started WW2″ I’m going to call them out on it. If that’s what this book you refer to is all about (calling people out on lies) then it must be a worthy read. I’ll have to check it out.

    • A Miffed Whovian

      Give this guy a prize because his comment is nothing less than http://31.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m9imtivlWA1rxlmf0o1_250.gif

    • marco01

      LMAO, our propensity to believe in demagogues, that’s rich coming from the side that has nothing but wall to wall demagogues spewing the most absurd hyperbolic demonizing hate unrelentingly 24/7, gimme a break.

      Limbaugh, Savage, Levin, Coulter, Hannity, Beck, Ingraham, O’Reilly, Malkin, Boortz, Fischer, Liddy, Keyes, Bolling, etc etc ad nauseum, what do liberals have to compare? Nothing.

  • ThePanicMan

    Looks like we got us some winners in the comments already.

  • Chris

    Wow, this is crazy talk. The majority of America does NOT subscribe to your nonsense. Go to Europe.. get out of my country

    • John Barleycorn

      I wish I could thumbs this up 500 times.

      • Chris

        THANK YOU, JOHN. I know most people feel the way I do, yet due to “political correctness” they shy away from saying anything anymore. I think the tides are about to turn as they did from the liberal stupidity of the 60’s as compared with the pendulum swing to the 80’s.
        If these people want a Europe-type country, then MOVE THERE.

        • The Last Prepper

          How about no…how about we stay here and if you don’t like it, YOU move.

          • DefiantDeity

            We are not the ones that don’t like the way the country is. You are the losers that want to change things so you people can move.

          • The Last Prepper

            I’m fine where I’m at, thank you. Any other suggestions?

    • George Frayer

      I beg to differ. At Mid-Terms even though Liberals felt the need to use Illegals to try and achieve there goal via illegal voting. The Republicans still whiped the board of them, sending a clear message that America is tired of the Far-Left…. Yes Liberals with all your America hate, America hates you too.

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