DROWNING IN DUMB! Your nation may truly be dying of dumb. Wed blame it on Palinand KO: // link // print // previous // next //
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2009
Ruminations on Stupak: For our money, the most interesting cable segment last night was the Hardball segment with Rep. Bart Stupak, he of the Stupak-Pitts amendment. How might the current battle over Stupak-Pitts be resolved without killing health reform? As usual, host Chris Matthews wasnt able to craft a fully coherent discussion. But in these remarks, Stupak defined his own view of where this matter leads:
It has been difficult to follow this issue, in part because our biggest news orgs have made so little attempt to explain it. (The New York Times has completely taken a pass.) Meanwhile, our liberal cable news programs have tended to go straight to pro-choice positioning, by-passing any serious attempt to explain the (complex) facts.
There has been one other problem. Pro-choice groups have been driving their position with what may be the silliest talking-point weve ever seen in politics. There it was again last Friday in a letter to the New York Times, which otherwise has made so little attempt to discuss this matter at all:
Truly, that highlighted claim may be the most unintelligent talking-point weve ever seen in politics. Health insurance is all about anticipating events you dont plan. You buy insurance because you know that unplanned events may occur. But so what? This talking-point has been in wide use for the past several months now.
Big news orgs are sitting this topic out; pro-choice groups offer claims like that. In each case, wed have to say the public interest is being short-changedinsulted.
Dems and Reps agree on one point. Each group says it only wants to maintain the status quo regarding funding. We liberals sometimes like to pretend otherwise, but that status quo has long involved large, sweeping prohibitions on the use of federal money to pay for abortion. If we were king, that wouldnt be our own policy choice. But that is the status quoand the vast majority of liberals have always accepted it. Tell us when you ever saw a liberal (or Democratic) group argue that Medicaid should pay for abortionthat the federal employees health insurance plan should include abortion coverage.
In our view, the mainstream press has taken a hike on this topic; liberals have tended to do the same, refusing to acknowledge the extent to which we have always agreed to restrictions on funding. Last night, Stupak said a deal can be reached; so did Sen. Ron Wyden, on Countdown. We can only hope that the pair are right. It seems we rubes will be kept in the dark about the real shape of this issue.
An intriguing point from MacGillis: On Sunday, the Washington Post at least provided a full attempt at reporting this topic. As leading liberals shriek and posture about our commitment to funding and choice, it might be worth pondering this point:
Under the proposed Democratic bills, many more women would get coverage under Medicaid. By long-standing, pre-existing agreement, they would therefore not be covered for abortion. When you see Democratic solons swearing about their commitment to funding, just remember that these same people built this into their plan. Were not saying they were wrong to do so. But we would suggest that some Dem pols are being a bit disingenuous.
In our view, big mainstream news orgs are ducking this topicand youre getting played by some pols.
DROWNING IN DUMB: Maureen Dowd and Sarah Palin have a lot in common. We learn about these similarities in Dowds latest novel/column, which she typed for todays New York Times after reading Palins new book.
How are Dowd and Palin alike? We both read The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Dowd writes. We both came from families that loved Ronald Reagan.
Dowd is many years older, of course. But culturally, the pair share a tie.
Dowd is also like Keith Olbermann. The pair enjoy writing novelized versions of events, even where there is no sign that they could possibly know what is true. And they love wasting your time on consummate trivia. Here is Dowds novel this morning:
According to Dowd, Nicolle Wallace undercut Palin. Because Wallace once had a contract at CBS, she was determined to get the big interview for Katie Couric, even if it meant leading the lamb to slaughter.
Question: Does anyone have the slightest idea why Dowd thinks she knows these things? As written, this is simply a novel, tricked up as pseudo-journalism. Dowd has crawled inside Wallaces head to offer this version of a trivial event. In truth, this event aint worth discussing. But Dowd doesnt show the slightest sign of knowing what really occurred.
Of course, Dowd is dumb, irresponsible, unbalanced; she should have been canned many years in the past. Unfortunately, an astonishing fact has become clear: Keith Olbermann is even dumber than Dowdeven less emotionally balanced. In the last two nights, he and his running-mate, Rachel Maddow, have fed us the equal-but-opposite novel about this utterly pointless Wallace matter. KO has shrieked and howled at the moon about all manner of Palin trivia, rarely showing the slightest sign of knowing what would count as evidence for his various pleasing claims. On Monday, he seemed to vouch for various McCain aides (including Wallace) who have challenged things Palin has said. Regarding Wallace, he cant possibly know hat happened either. But he knows which side hes on.
When it comers to Palin and Wallace, how could Olbermann possibly know whose account is more accurate? In truth, he simply doesnt. This big unintelligent emotional mess is feeding young liberals his own tortured novels. But by now, Olbermann feeds on the brains of young liberals as Dracula would have fed on their throats.
Your nation is currently downing in dumb. In the past few days, pseudo-liberal and mainstream reaction to Palins book shows you the depth of our problem.
Lets start with the APs inept attempt to fact-check the book, a groaning effort which wasalas and alackeven presented at Salon.
The APs piece was written by Calvin Woodward, whose ineptitude has stunned us here since his days of hunting down Candidate Gore in 1999. That said: Even by Woodwards woeful professional standards, his attempt to fact-check Palins book is a true journalistic mess. Below, we see the very first item in his fact-checkthe very first topic he mentions in his synopsis of his report. Can we really not see the problems with the mans work?
Classic Woodward! All through his groaning fact-check, he paraphrases what Palin has said, before proceeding to his critique. It is thus impossible for his reader to know what Palin has actually said. Beyond that, as in this passage, his recitation of THE FACTS often tends to support the things Palin has allegedly said. In this example, can liberal readers not see that Woodwards account of THE FACTS agrees with what Palin supposedly said about not often going for the high-end, robe and slippers hotels? It may be that Palins alleged statement about frugality is contradicted by the cost of her childrens travel, though Woodward fails to quote that statement. But some of his FACTS support what Palin is alleged to have said, and some of his FACTS are simply irrelevant. What is the relevance of these FACTS, for instance: Event organizers said Palin asked if she could bring her daughter. Palin sometimes took her kids to events where they had not been invited.
Woodward offers a dozen fact-checks; almost all are substantially flawed, due to his familiar journalistic ineptitude. But then, theres a lot of ineptitude in the liberal world too. Consider what happened when Salon attempted to assess Palins book for itself.
Alas! After wasting his time with silly clatter about Palin being a mean girl, Thomas Rogers finally tried to put some meat on his critiques bones. But good lordis this the best we liberals can manage? Discussing Palins bloopers and bizarre passages, Rogers started with this perfect nonsense:
According to our weak liberal minds, that seems to be the most strikingly noteworthy or bizarre passage a Candidate Palin would have to live down in the future. But can anyone explain why that is? By the time McCain made that phone call, Palin had been mentioned as a possible VP nominee for monthsand shed been personally interviewed for the post by McCain himself! Why on earth would she be shocked or astonished when McCain finally offered the gig? This passage makes no earthly sensebut its good enough to serve as Palins leading blooper in a piece designed for us weak-minded liberals. You see, we liberals love to hate. Any excuse, no matter how weak, is taken as food for the soul.
(Rogers goes on to vouch the for Woodwards fact-check. As you can see, he immediately misreports the item about the hotel.)
It has been sad to watch shrieking liberals killing the pig when it comes to Palins new book. If you want to know why theres nothing resembling a progressive politics in your country, just review the empty calories on which we liberals are happy to feed. Of course, no one has played the fool like Olbermann, who even returned to his strings of dick jokes about tea-baggers on last evenings program.
Olbermann is one of the most emotionally unbalanced people weve ever seen on TV. (In the last two nights, he has made Sean Hannity seem, by contrast, like the newest Mensa head.) Last night, this most unbalanced of cable news clowns returned to a string of his beloved dick jokesas he kept saying how clueless the other side is on such matters! Republicans made me tell these jokes, this least mature of all known humans said:
There was more, but lets quit there. For the record, double entendre is a French term which means, in this context, Im a simmering mess.
Down the throats, [boner] endorsement and dick army were all lovingly offered to viewersforced from Olbermann by the Republicans. But then, Olbermann is the most unbalanced gender-nut weve ever seen on TV. His open misogyny has been a disgrace for yearsthough the liberal world has politely accepted it. He weeps and moans about mommys death, then returns with joy to his favorite jokes and his sneering assaults on young women.
Meanwhile, his own fact checking of Palins book has been a world-class study in dumb. In these ways, Olbermann eats the brains of the liberal young. And your nation keeps dying of dumb.
Your nation is in a world of hurt; your nation seems to be dying of dumb. Palin has been one part of this problem. As he swallows the brains of the young, Olbermann is a bigger problem by far.
Return of a corporate hack: By the way, Richard Wolffe is back on Countdown, offering inane agreement with Keith on a regular basis. Months ago, Wolffe was thrown off the air due to his status as a corporate lobbyist, as recorded by Glenn Greenwald. (Having Richard Wolffe host an MSNBC programor serving as an almost daily political analystis exactly tantamount to MSNBC's just turning over an hour every night to a corporate lobbyist. For Greenwalds full critique, click here.) Now, the fatuous fellow is back. But readers! Thats entertainment!
By the way: Dan Bartlett, Wolffes owner at Public Strategies, was one of the biggest cogs in Candidate Bushs message machine. In the fall of 2000, hes the guy who sold the ludicrous doggy pill crap to the Boston Globe. Candidate Gore was thus transformed into a LIAR again; his ten-point lead in the polls disappeared. George Bush ended up in the White House.
Wolffe now makes his cash from Bartlettand he caddies for KOs clowning. In the process, the brains of young liberals are getting devouredand your nation keeps dying of dumb.
Whos stupak now: Olbermann, last night. What a shock:
What a shocker: Olbermann didnt understand our politics! Perhaps if hed stop insulting voters, telling dick jokes, and kicking the sh*t out of young blonde women who share Obamas view on marriage, he might join the land of the living. Our advice: Dont hold your breath. This man is a lingering mess.