Baseless left-wing attacks on Republicans differ in character from baseless right-wing attacks on Democrats in two ways. First, most liberal-left attacks on Republicans are more political than cultural, while virtually all right-wing attacks on Democrats are about culture. And second, those liberal-left attacks that are about culture tend to be mocking in tone, expressing derision, while the right’s attacks are fearful, expressing deep paranoia.
Let’s take them one by one. Bush and his top men were often called fascists on the left. That’s an attack that certainly has its cultural elements, but it is first and foremost political. The worst thing people on the left could think to do, in other words—call Bush a fascist—is a political smear, not a cultural one. This reflects the way most people on the left see the world—through a political lens primarily, and through a cultural one only secondarily. There are exceptions to this, but in the main, for the broad liberal-left, politics is primarily about politics, not culture.