Diana West

Such evidence, of course, would (metaphor alert) kill the Big-Lie drive to judge Republicans guilty of the Arizona crime and thereafter sentence them to a kind of peer-pressured censorship. Robust and, lately, winning conservative debate is (metaphors ahead) the target here; the weaponry doesn't matter to the Left. Which means facts don't matter, either. To wit: "So far, there's no connection between alleged murderer Jared Lee Loughner and the extremes of the Tea Party movement," writes the Washington Post's Jonathan Capehart, arguing for "Republican leaders to tamp down the rhetoric." He continues: "But that's beside the point...."

Really?

In the end, though, what's worse than the Big Lie itself is the failure to reject and expose it -- the failure, in this case, to identity the lie as a naked influence operation to mute conservative political expression. This failure is the crime Republicans are guilty of each time they stoop to defend themselves within the phony terms of the lie itself.

When House Speaker John Boehner canceled all House votes this week, including the all-important first round on repealing Obamacare, the message was: Yes, maybe there is a bona fide link between congressional debate in Washington and the internal monologue that drove a man to kill in Tuscon. Sarah Palin, too, protested way too much in her response to the Left's "blood libel" against her. It's not a civics lesson that's required to bring the Left to "reason." Where there are no facts, there is no reason, and any painstakingly logical arguments against disreputable falsehoods only further extend the charade.

A great unmasking is what's needed here. Having twisted an unspeakable crime into a gag for their opposition, the Left must be called out, and it's the job of the Right to do it. Otherwise, as with every Big Lie, silence turns everyone into a Big Liar.


Diana West

Diana West is the author of American Betrayal: The Secret Assault on Our Nation's Character (St. Martin's Press, 2013), and The Death of the Grown-Up: How America's Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization (St. Martin's Press, 2007).