One of the most intellectually dishonest ploys that have crept up from the Right after the Holocaust Memorial shooting is the desperate, shallow attempt to portray the racist, right-wing, anti-semitic neo-Nazi shooter as a “leftist”.

How could that be even remotely true? Just because the right-wing extremist was apparently also angry at conservative politicians and pundits doesn’t make him a “leftist”. It simply means that he felt they weren’t fascist enough for him.

The whole meme of the Right, popularized by Jonah Goldberg, that there is such a thing as “liberal fascism” is an Orwellian lie. Liberalism is antithetical to fascism. Liberalism is based on tolerance of other’s differences and embracing diversity. It is the polar opposite of the enforced conformity that fascism promotes.

The “evidence” that the right-wingers present to state their case is paper-thin. They argue that the Nazis were socialist because their party name includes the word “socialist”. That makes about as much sense as saying that the Republican party has ties with the terrorist Irish Republican Army, or Saddam Hussein’s Republican Guard, because of their names.

How anyone can believe, without a brain-numbing cognitive dissonance, that a hateful genocidal war criminal like Hitler is a “leftist”, just like a tree-hugging, granola-chewing anti-war peacenik hippie, is beyond me.

What’s disturbing is that the Right gets defensive whenever the phrase “right-wing extremist” is used. Instead of condemning right-wing extremist violence, they are desperate to project the fascist label on their opponents. Some, like Big Hollywood’s Andrew Breitbart, seem to feel that to describe the Holocaust Museum shooter as a right-wing extremist is a personal attack against him and his ideology. Does he react so defensively because he secretly approves of neo-Nazi violence?

They are either lying or delusional. I think that they have crossed a line into such depths of intellectual dishonesty that it will be difficult for them to climb out of. They have decided that their hate for their liberal opponents is more important than making common cause against fascist extremism. It’s a sad, pathetic place to be.