« The Bader Blog

Upon Further Review...

by Jerry Bader

National Review Online shared this column from the New York Times' Charles Blow last month. Blow was making the case that paranoia was driving the American Right these days. Blow quoted a Pew Center Research report:

“The growing view that the federal government threatens personal rights and freedoms has been led by conservative Republicans. Currently 76 percent of conservative Republicans say that the federal government threatens their personal rights and freedoms and 54 percent describe the government as a ‘major’ threat.”

The report continued:

“By comparison, there has been little change in opinions among Democrats; 38 percent say the government poses a threat to personal rights and freedoms and just 16 percent view it as a major threat.”

Incidentally, 62 percent of those who had a gun in their home thought the government posed a threat, as opposed to 45 percent of those without a gun in the home. 

Blow's piece was intended to paint fear of government overreach as irrational. As the old joke goes, it's not paranoia if they really are out to get you. I wonder if we'll see a follow-up piece from Mr. Blow addressing the IRS scandal. Or how about the AP phone records story Mr. Blow? Do you think about that every time you use a phone at the Times, or even at your own home? If you do, does that make you paranoid?