Josh Marshall on recent calls for him to ignore Sarah Palin and, therefore, she’ll just go away.
Frequently a reader will write in to say, “Why are you giving her so much attention? You’re just pumping her up. If you and the other places would stop giving her so much oxygen, she and her whole circus would just wither away.”
I don’t know which circle of the hell of myopia you need to be residing in to think like this. But it’s very deep in there, I assure you. [...]
This is actually a real blind spot for liberals in general — the idea that things that are crazy or tawdry or just outrageous are really best ignored. Don’t give them more attention. You’re just giving them what they want. Or maybe it’s not so practical and utilitarian. Maybe, they say, it’s just beneath us. Focus on the important stuff.
On so many levels this represents an alienation from the popular political culture which is not only troubling in itself but actually damages progressive and center-left politics in general no end.
People write to me all the time suggesting the same nonsense. Maybe we should have ignored the atrocities of the Iraq war — and they might have just vanished. Or maybe we should have ignored the crimes of the Bush administration — POOF! Gone! Right? No?
I’m not sure how ignoring a potential candidate for president will best serve progressivism, especially if a perfect storm elects her to the White House. Suddenly we’re not supposed to offer a check to right-wing lies and ignorance? I don’t get that.