*Equal opportunity scrutiny

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY SCRUTINY…. There’s been a major-league freak-out among conservatives in response to reports that the Department of Homeland Security is concerned about possible violence from right-wing extremists. Law-enforcement officials are worried about murderous lunatics committing acts of violence, and for some reason, Limbaugh, Malkin, et al, worry that they might be included in the scrutiny.

As it turns out, the Obama administration’s Department of Homeland Security has prepared a threat assessment on “left-wing extremists,” too. Greg Sargent has the report.

I’ve now obtained, however, an internal DHS assessment for law enforcement officials that sounds equally dire warnings about “left wing extremists.” And it broadly defines these extremists as including people who embrace some components of “anticapitalist” or “antiglobalization” ideas.

You can read the whole thing right here.

While this new memo was mentioned tangentially by The Washington Times, reading the whole memo in full shows clearly that a similar approach was employed towards the left and deflates any claims of DHS “bias.”

The threat assessment notes, “Many leftwing extremists use the tactic of direct action to inflict economic damage on businesses and other targets to force the targeted organization to abandon what the extremists deem objectionable. Direct actions range from animal releases, property theft, vandalism, and cyber attacks — all of which extremists regard as nonviolent — to bombings and arson.”

Now, given this, are liberal media figures, pundits, bloggers, and talk-show hosts likely to throw a complete fit? It seems unlikely, for one simple reason: I don’t think DHS is referring to liberal media figures, pundits, bloggers, and talk-show hosts.

It’s what struck me as so strange yesterday. When DHS raised concerns about radical right-wing extremists who might commit acts of violence, Limbaugh, Hannity, Dobbs, Malkin, and others immediately thought, “Wait, maybe they’re talking about us!”

With DHS also concerned about “left-wing extremists,” it seems mainstream liberals aren’t especially concerned about being lumped in with a violent fringe.

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