Conservative media channel history to portray health care bill as great tragedy

››› ››› MATT GERTZ

Right wing media figures have compared the passage of landmark health care reform legislation to historical events including the Black Plague, the attack on Pearl Harbor, Bloody Sunday, the passage of the Stamp Act, the federal government's refusal to bail out New York City in the 1970's, the Jonestown massacre, and The Day The Music Died.

Health care reform passage reminds conservative media of...

Wash. Times: Dems say health bill was "historic," "but so was the Black Plague." A March 21 The Washington Times editorial featured the subheadline, "Obamacare is an historic moment - like the Black Plague." In the editorial, the Times wrote: "House Speaker Nancy Pelosi fixated on the mantra that the Democrats' health plan is 'historic,' but so was the Black Plague."

Drudge: "A Day That Will Live In Infirmary." On March 22, Internet gossip Matt Drudge linked to an Associated Press article on the passage of health care reform under the headline, "A Day That Will Live in Infirmary," a reference to the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.

WorldNetDaily: "Bloody Sunday, 2010." WorldNetDaily headlined its March 21 article on the passage of the bill, "Bloody Sunday, 2010: House OKs health bill." "Bloody Sunday" is a term used to refer to numerous violent historical events, including the 1965 attack on civil rights marchers by law enforcement officers in Selma, Alabama and the 1972 attack on civil rights protesters in Northern Ireland by the British Army.

Breitbart compares health care reform passage to passage of the Stamp Act. In a March 22 post on Andrew Breitbart's Big Government, Publius, the pseudonym of the website's "Editorial Panel," wrote: "Today, in 1765, the British Parliament enacted the Stamp Act. It was eventually repealed. It gives us hope today. We have 8-9 months to create a GOP that will have the stomach to repeal the legislation that passed last night. They don't have the spine for it now....but they will before the year is out."

Washington Examiner: "Democrats to America: Drop dead." The Washington Examiner headlined its March 22 editorial on passage of health care reform "Democrats to America: Drop dead." The Examiner referenced a famous 1975 Daily News cover, which highlighted President Ford's speech denying federal assistance to prevent New York City from having to declare bankruptcy with the headline "Ford to City: Drop Dead."

Caddell: Health bill is "the political equivalent of Jonestown." In a March 21 appearance on Fox News, Fox News contributor Pat Caddell said that "you have the opponents running around having tea parties, and my party is having a Kool-Aid party. I mean, we are having what I call the political equivalent of Jonestown going on here." Jonestown was a community in Guyana led by cult leader Jim Jones; in 1978, more than 900 members died as part of a murder-suicide pact.

Geller compares passage to plane crash that killed Holly, Valens, Big Bopper. Atlas Shrugs' Pamela Geller headlined a blog post on the bill's passage "Bye Bye Miss American Pie," a reference to "American Pie," Don McLean's 1971 song about the 1959 plane crash the killed singers Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and the Big Bopper.

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