One reason I have so much fun lampooning Barney Frank is that he is almost the perfect caricature of the self-important politician, saying one thing while behaving in the exact opposite reaction. If the media didn’t feel they needed hold this unhappy Democrat in such awe, they too might see through his bluster.
To be sure, he’s a smart guy who often tosses out some clever quips. And is certainly more interesting than the great majority of his colleagues. He doesn’t mince his words, something which might, in the ordinary course of events, be a good thing, but when that failure to mince becomes occasion to insult, then, well, he’s gone too far.
And Barney often, very often indeed, goes too far, deriding the intelligence of his Republican colleagues, misrepresenting (often in malicious terms) their ideas, accusing them of all manner of prejudice. And then, when one or two conservatives behaves badly, he runs for the cameras and tells us how horrible, no good and very bad Republicans are.
So, I find it particularly rich when reporters uses the mean-spirited Massachusetts Democrat as a primary source, indeed, quoting him in their headline on protesters’ boorish behavior, as did Politico’s Marin Coogan & Meredith Shiner in their article, Barney Frank: ‘Mass hysteria’ on Capitol Hill.
Note how they cover a protester ejected by Capitol Police from the House gallery after yelling:
Frank was visibly angry with his GOP colleagues, whom he believed goaded the protester who slipped inside the House chamber.
“Did you guys see the Republicans encouraging the disruption?” Frank left the House floor to tell about 15 reporters. “These clowns are out there encouraging violation of the law and making the job of the guys up there harder. It’s really disgraceful.”
The hyperpartisan Democrat is their only source for the notion that his Republican colleagues goaded the protester. Said protester should have been ejected. He behaved badly. Yet, Barney doesn’t respond in a civil tone, instead, calling his Republican colleagues “clowns”! Wonder if he’ll be asking Democrats colleagues to “differentiate” themselves from him.
One Politico reporter did overhear someone in the crowd yelling “faggot” when Barney walked by–this being the only corroborated (that I could find) case of a hateful epithet being hurled by a tea party protester in Sunday’s demonstrations. It’s sad that someone would use such a term.
Hateful as it was, it was an isolated incident. Such rhetoric does not define the Tea Parties. Mr. Frank may try to make much of it, but, even is a report quite favorable to him, the reporters can’t conceal his partisanship and the contempt in which he holds his Republican colleagues. And can’t provide evidence of other such slurs.
Well, Barney, the feeling is mutual. But, I, for one, wouldn’t hold you in such contempt if you showed a little more respect for your ideological adversaries and a little more consistency in your rhetoric. And were less ready to accuse Republicans of dastardly motivations and psychological disorders when they offered a viewpoint at odds with your own.