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Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Steve Paikin: Is deranged criticism the newest political phenomenon?

The first time I heard about this new political phenomenon, it was directed at former U.S. president George W. Bush.

The gist of it was Bush’s opponents were so furious at him that they had become unhinged in their criticism. Bush wasn’t just a bad president: he probably stole the 2000 election from Al Gore, he may have even been warned by the Saudis about September 11, his decision to attack Iraq may have been partially motivated by the influence of the American logging industry – even though much of Iraq is desert – and so forth.

Bush was such a bad president, and his views were so illegitimate, normal criticism wouldn’t do. A much more hyper critical, over-the-top response was required. The phenomenon became known as “Bush Derangement Syndrome.”

As with many American phenomena, if you wait long enough, it’ll come north, and this one now apparently has.

In Canada, my liberal friends have been suffering for several years from “Harper Derangement Syndrome.” They hate the man so much personally, and despise his agenda so viscerally that they’re incapable of discussing his record rationally...

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