History’s greatest monsters

HISTORY’S GREATEST MONSTERS…. It’s occasionally helpful to be reminded why I stopped reading far-right blogs.

A fairly prominent site called Right Wing News sent out a questionnaire to more than 100 leading conservative blogs, asking who they considered the worst Americans to ever live. It’s not exactly an easy exercise — coming up with American heroes is considerably easier — but the results ranking the top 25 offer an interesting look at the perspectives of some of the right’s most notable bloggers. (via Ron Chusid)

Bill Clinton tied for 23rd, alongside Hillary Clinton. Filmmaker Michael Moore tied for 19th, as did Al Sharpton. Actress Jane Fonda was 13th, along with Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi. John Wilkes Booth came in 11th and Timothy McVeigh was 9th, but both murderers ranked below Ted Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson.

The top three: (3) Franklin Delano Roosevelt, (2) Barack Obama, and (1) Jimmy Carter. Yep, these three are, according to the right-wing bloggers who participated in the unscientific survey, the single worst Americans to ever live.

Rick Moran, himself a conservative blogger, wrote in response:

Frankly, this is embarrassing. Putting the Clintons, Pelosi, Reid, Gore, Sharpton, and other contemporary Democrats ahead of someone like Nathan Bedford Forest who was at least partly responsible for creating the KKK after the Civil War and spent his spare nights riding around the countryside whipping, lynching, and burning at the stake innocent African Americans demonstrates an extraordinary ignorance of American history.

James Joyner, another conservative writer, described the top 25 list as “bizarre.”

Also note, in case it’s not clear, the exercise appears to be entirely sincere. Every weeknight, Keith Olbermann names the “worst person in the world,” but there’s a tongue-in-cheek quality to the segment — the music, the audio effects, the exaggerated speech are all intended to suggest that Olbermann does not literally consider his targets the single worst human beings on the planet.

The Right Wing News survey, however, was a serious attempt to identify the worst the United States has to offer — the worst the United States has ever offered.

The results say far more about conservative bloggers than the finalists on the list.