From the desk of Senator Al Franken:
We understand that right-wingers hate communists and liberals with equal fervor and we know they can’t tell the difference. Here’s how you tell the difference. A communist (and a tyrant) is when Pol Pot, who ruled Cambodia in the 70s, turns his entire nation into an infamous “killing field” and one of every six citizens dies. Liberals, by comparison, favor gay marriage. No one has to die for that to happen.
Tyranny is the vast Soviet gulag. Tyranny is the massacre in Tiananmen Square.
Paranoia is listening to Fox News every day and quaking in fear as guest after guest warns that Mr. Obama is trampling the U. S. Constitution, but not noticing that — frankly, this seems hard not to notice — no one from the government ever comes to get anyone at Fox News. This is as it should be in a great nation where Rush Limbaugh is free to build a following and fill the tedious hours of listeners’ lives with bombast and buffoonery.
Tyranny is Saddam Hussein ordering his military to dump mustard gas and nerve agents on dozens of Kurdish villages, killing thousands of men, women and children.
Paranoia is when you think guaranteeing health care for individuals with preexisting conditions is like dropping nerve gas on villages (is tyranny).
Tyranny is hereditary power — Kim Jong Un taking over from Kim Jong Il, who took over from Kim Il Sung — always without elections — and transforming an entire nation into a vast prison camp. Tyranny is the Assad regime today, Fidel Castro ruling Cuba half a century, and the South African government during the Apartheid Era.
Paranoia is when you can go right down to the gun store and buy up plenty of arms and ammunition; and then you vilify Mr. Obama for issuing executive orders related to gun sales. Even Fox News couldn’t really make them sound scary if anyone who watched Fox News would take time to read them. To wit, Executive Order 6:
“Publish a letter from ATF to federally licensed gun dealers providing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers.”
In fact, here’s one sure-fire way to tell the difference between tyranny and paranoia: Tyranny almost always involves torture and killing. Paranoia is when you think issuing a letter of guidance to gun dealers is tyranny.
There’s plenty more where that came from.