January 25, 2021

On Sunday, Rand Paul won most of the attention of the day when he went full "both siderist" regarding Trump's big lie on "election fraud."

Joe Biden won the 2020 election in a free and fair contest. Trump's lawyers lost in court scores of times.

But Rand Paul argued that since the majority of Republicans still "believe" Donald Trump's lies, that makes those lies worthy of consideration. Both Sides. Steve Benen wrote at MSNBC.com this morning: "In the Republican's vision, journalists have a responsibility to present the public with both lies and facts. Media professionals who alert the electorate to the truth, in Paul's vision, are doing the public a disservice. Real journalism, according to the hapless senator, means giving equal weight to garbage and reality."

In our podcast "The Professional Left," Driftglass and I frequently attack the "both sides do it" myth as a sure sign that a cowardly Republican is about to lose an argument. "Both sides" is the hidey-hole where Republicans go when all else fails.

David Corn gets it:

So does Jay Rosen:

As I replied to both of them, hey guys, The Professional Left Podcast has t-shirts!

So when Rand Paul says "both sides," the battle is really over.

But there are many battles yet to fight, so when you hear the words "both sides," here's some ammo to throw back at the cowards who use that weak weapon. These are reprinted from my post from 2017. 'Both Sides' is an evergreen battle:

Both Sides Don't.

#BothSidesDont pass voter suppression laws.

#BothSidesDont filibuster their own bill to ensure Obama had zero accomplishments.

#BothSidesDont hold private bill drafting sessions re our nation's health insurance system and leave. out. women. and. people. of. color.

#BothSidesDont need a "No Labels" movement (or a Tea Party rebranding) to get past their last president's failures.

#BothSidesDont make up fake rules to prevent a qualified Supreme Court nominee from having a hearing let alone a vote.

#BothSidesDont refer to human beings as "illegals," or use dog whistles like "cosmopolitan."

#BothSidesDont vote to confirm the most unqualified Secretary of Education in American History. HUD Secretary. Secretary of Energy, Treasury.

#BothSidesDont look the other way while their presidential nominee shows no interest in the party's platform except the Ukraine plank.

#BothSidesDont have Orly Taitz as a driver of their politics for years.

#BothSidesDont look back on the day their House of Rep members gave Rush Limbaugh a plaque calling him "The Majority Maker." (1994)

#BothSidesDont push alternative facts, Bowling Green Massacre, 3M illegal voters, Pizzagate, or a selling babies for "parts" conspiracy.

#BothSidesDont think "Dynamic Scoring" is a thing or that Tax Cuts for Billionaires will "grow" the economy to 4%.

#BothSidesDont use Congressional investigations and billionaire funded 501c3 Judicial Watch lawsuits as mission critical election tools.

#BothSidesDont need a political lifeboat after Trump is kicked out of office. i.e. "Trumpism isn't Republican" "I'm an independent Constitutional Conservative."

#BothSidesDont let 'grab 'em by the pu**y' stand so they can get their tax cuts for the rich.

I hope C&L readers will add to this list, either on Twitter or in comments below. It isn't difficult.

Highly recommended, click the link to see the surprisingly high number of times we have covered media both-siderism here at C&L. Chuck Todd is a particular stand-out on this score.

The hashtag is #BothSidesDont

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