That American people, or enough of them anyway, can overreact at the drop of a hat. During the history classes growing up, we were always reminded of the Palmer raids and red scares after World War I and McCarthyism during and after the Korean War. Hysteria and fear driven by a real but distant and quite weak red menace. How could this happen? The 20th century equivalent of witch hunts?
For the past year, I have been hearing about socialism this and communism that. Red herrings, indeed. But the efforts by opponents of health care reform to play upon these "ancient hatreds"/fears has worked--folks who would benefit from reform opposite it. Well done. And so now I can see how folks might overreact to the threat of real or semi-real communism if they get this upset over imaginary communism.
So, is it more American to accuse other folks of being un-American? Or is it more American to expect to see reason win out? Give that we have had a House Un-American Activities Committee and that the previous administration was essentially on the record as seeing reality as an unnecessary obstacle during the planning process, I guess I would vote for the former. And that makes me a bad Liberal since Liberals expect that with reason and good information, people will bargain and reach decent outcomes.
PS And I have also learned that the Democrats are often lousy campaigners--attacking Curt Schilling as a yankee? Jeez. Talk about clueless.