Megan McArdle was recently forced to revisit her violent imagery regarding liberals after complaining about violent imagery from liberals. Her hypocrisy didn't bother her, of course, since rules are for the Little People, which in McArdle's case means anyone who is not like her and her family and friends. Unfortunately for her (and the victim), in a strange and fortuitous bit of timing the Right once again strikes out against the left with violence, as Rand Paul followers attack a Move-On supporter.
McArdle is a fan of Paul's plan to end Social Security and Medicare, so in her careful way she does as much as she safely can to mitigate the severity of the attack. It is not her job to praise or encourage such actions--that's for your Michelle Malkins and Pam Gellars. But make no mistake, Megan McArdle is their sister under the skin and therefore must do what she can to support the attackers lest they harm Paul's reputation with their actions.
First mitigation: It's not that bad.
How Not to Stop a Protester
From the descriptions on the blogs I read, I was expecting something much worse.
But this is quite bad enough: [video of attack on protester]
Second mitigation: Lie about what actually happened to make it look less severe or to blame the victim.
There's no excuse for trying to attack someone for the hideous crime of attempting to embarass your candidate. If you want to get between her and him, fair enough. I might even countenance sign-stealing. But hurling someone to the ground and stepping on her head to keep her from moving is thuggery.
The protester wasn't moving on the ground. She was absolutely still. And the man who had his foot on her head shoved downwards before he was stopped by another person at the event. Notice that the minute he was told by someone else to stop, he did. That man probably would have not committed any violence if he didn't think that his actions would be permitted.
Third mitigation: Don't blame the authority for the actions of their followers.
I think it's ludicrous to hold Rand Paul responsible for this, but nonetheless, he needs to be outspoken in his denunciation of what happened. Political violence against people carrying signs is not okay.
Forth mitigation: The other side does it too.
Yes, conservatives, I understand that there is a lot of hypocrisy coming from folks who were making excuses for Martha Coakley when one of her employees attacked a journalist, but see this as the second coming of the Hitler Youth. Two wrongs, however, do not make a right, and in this case, by normalizing physical aggression when it comes from the "right side", they make an even greater wrong.
McArdle could easily point to this post and say, "See! I said violence was bad and the right was wrong to commit any!" Yet her readers will also see that hey, it wasn't as bad as people said and the left does it too and it's nobody's fault.
That's her job. She's the Good German and when the economy collapses further and violence increases, Megan McArdle will be the first to point fingers and tisk-tisk all the violence that she delights in and couldn't wait to see, whether it was in a New York anti-war protest or the bombing of little kids and their moms and dads in Iraq. Afterwards she's all "Oh my goodness! Violence is bad!" But when the banksters were gutting the economy and the Bush Administration was invading countries for fun and profit, she was first in line to tell everyone else to shut up and obey their masters.