Sen. John Thune (R-SD) summarized his Deficit Reduction and Budget Reform Act on the Hill website. His purpose was to outline his ideas for restoring fiscal discipline to the federal government. Not once did Sen. Thune mention “American exceptionalism,” the laws of science, religion, or race. But that didn’t stop an obvious Regressive from taking the Senator to task on each subject.

In the comments section “PGBACH” wrote:

Dear Johnny,
The Founders did not embraced [sic] a “spirit of American Exceptionalism.” Unlike you, they were not arrogant. There is nothing in their writings to suggest they believed they were better than anyone else. In fact, to the contrary. The Founders were rational people. They rejected delusional psychosis. At no time did they claim America was above the laws of science. I do understand, Johnny, you belong to a party that rejects rationalism and science, while embracing religious delusions. That your proposal would double the poverty rate in the USA in 24 months demonstrates the GOP’s agenda for rich white folks. You nearly make me ashamed to be white.

Unsubstantiated claims accompanied by race-baiting and ignorance of the Founding Fathers. “PGBACH” is a vapid talking point, a Regressive through and through. But it’s the total misconstruction of “American exceptionalism” that warrants response.

The respondent’s hostility toward “American exceptionalism” reveals a colossal ignorance of how conservatives utilize the term. “Exceptionalism” rises not from American citizens being better than citizens of other nations, but from our society and culture being based on a more solid foundation, namely personal and economic liberty and property rights. These inalienable rights have created a greater opportunity for success in America than in nations where such ideals are uncommon or suppressed.

“PGBACH” has equated exceptionalism with attitudes of superiority, the latter being more common on the American Left than on the American Right. The Left claims the understanding necessary to dictate everyone’s affairs. It is the Left that encourages Americans to surrender their rights and decisions to government. Healthcare? Retirement? Defense of self and property? How we build our homes? The kind of car we drive and the fuel economy we receive? Energy production? All are mandated, to some extent, through legislation and bureaucracy. Some such rules are warranted, but not all.

Before taking conservatives like Sen. Thune to task the respondent should’ve gotten the facts in order. Understanding Sen. Thune’s arguments and presenting a sound opposition would’ve been a start. Knowing the difference between exceptionalism and superiority would’ve helped, too. It’s likely “PGBACH” would’ve remained wrong. But there’s no excuse, aside from stupidity and laziness, to have looked so foolish in the process.