Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Knockin' On Satan's Door

Mama take this badge from me
I can't use it anymore
It's getting dark too dark to see
Feels like I'm knockin' on Satan's door..

One more Villager insider suddenly notices shit Liberals have been saying all along.

From The Washington Post:
This Harvard study is a powerful indictment of the media’s role in Donald Trump’s rise

By Chris Cillizza June 14 at 3:04 PM

I've written repeatedly — and self-righteously — about my belief that  ascribing the rise of Donald Trump in the Republican primary race to media complicity is ridiculous. And I believed every word.

But, a new study by Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University casts serious doubts on my position as it documents not only the outsized coverage Trump received — from TV and digital media — in the early days of his campaign but also how overwhelmingly positive that coverage was.

Let's go through a few of the most important findings from the study, which is based on "an analysis of thousands of news statements by CBS, Fox, the Los Angeles Times, NBC, The New York Times, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post" during 2015...

Let's not, shall we?  Because we here on the dirty, disreputable Left all fucking well know where this is going...

First comes the weakest "we-uh"culpa the WaPo lawyers will allow.
It's hard for me to look at the Shorenstein Center study and conclude anything other than that the media played a larger role in the rise of Trump than I previously believed.
Then comes every disclaimer in the toy box:
What I won't say is that we — as a media collective or The Washington Post in particular — let Trump off easy. We didn't. We wrote lots and lots of items digging into his proposals...

And I totally reject the various conspiracy theories about Trump's press coverage — the most common of which comes from Republicans and goes like this: "You guys handed Trump the nomination because you knew he'd be the easiest one for Hillary Clinton to beat."

Why did Trump get an outsized level of attention for someone in his polling place at the start of the race? A few things:

1. His celebrity. He is the first genuine celebrity of our reality TV age to run for president...

2. His approach. Journalists are biased in favor of good stories and quotable candidates...

3. His rise. The media may have helped Trump get off the ground. But once it became clear he was moving up, he became the story in a way that any fast-mover — Howard Dean in 2004, Mike Huckabee in 2008, etc. — does...

Followed by the grudging, obligatory promise to do better next time. Maybe even join up with David Brooks, drivin; around the country, solvin' journalism crimes and havin' adventures!  In the Journalism Mystery Machine! Which never seems to actually make it out of the driveway!
Still. For those of you who screamed when I wrote that the media bore no culpability in Trump's rise, you had it right. I'll try to do better next time.
Meanwhile, several pages away in the same publication, life-long Republican and writer of opinions, Kathleen Parker, is shocked!shocked! that Republican presidential nominee Donald Caligula Trump would stoop to demonizing the media!

First, we haul the by-now-well-worn fainting couch to the center of the stage and position it just right to show Ms. Parker's good side...
While Clinton spoke against anti-Muslim rhetoric, Trump leapt into the darkness with all four feet, snarling at President Obama’s lack of passion in addressing the Orlando slaughter and condemning him for refusing to use the words “radical Islamic terrorism” in identifying the enemy.

These charges are familiar enough, but this time Trump went a step further, suggesting that Obama resign from office and, conspiratorially, that there’s more going on than we know. Defaulting to his customary template, Trump shifted responsibility for these thoughts to “people.”

“Look, we’re led by a man that either is not tough, not smart, or he’s got something else in mind,” Trump said Monday on Fox News.

“And the something else in mind — you know, people can’t believe it. People cannot, they cannot believe that President Obama is acting the way he acts and can’t even mention the words ‘radical Islamic terrorism.’ There’s something going on. It’s inconceivable. There’s something going on.”

And who are these people who can’t believe “it”? Trump’s Twitter followers? The tiny voices in his head?...
Oh!  Oh!  I know!  Call on me!  "These people", Ms. Parker, are the base of your fucking party. There are millions and millions of them.  They are bigoted and irredeemably stupid and they have very openly been calling this president an unAmerican traitor who pals around with terrorists since before he took the oath of office:

In fact, it is so weird that you don't seem to know who "these people" are because a whole bunch of these very people ate you alive eight years ago when you suggested that, just maybe, calling the president-elect an unAmerican traitor was just a wee bit beyond the pale (from Firedoglake)
Kathleen Parker Shocked To Find Her Party’s Full Of “Vicious”, “Threatening”, Delusional Wingnuts

By: Blue Texan Wednesday October 1, 2008

Parker, who last week called for Palin to step down, now finds herself the target of a Wingnut Two Minutes of Hate.
"Allow me to introduce myself. I am a traitor and an idiot. Also, my mother should have aborted me and left me in a dumpster, but since she didn't, I should "off" myself.
"After 20 years of column writing, I'm familiar with angry mail. But the past few days have produced responses of a different order. Not just angry, but vicious and threatening.
And she knows vicious. Here's Parker in 2003, on the Democratic presidential candidates:
Here's a note I got recently from a friend and former Delta Force member, who has been observing American politics from the trenches: "These bastards like Clark and Kerry and that incipient ass, Dean, and Gephardt and Kucinich and that absolute mental midget Sharpton, race baiter, should all be lined up and shot."
Suck it up, Kathleen. You've been tossing red meat to a caged rabid animal for two decades. No sympathy when it finally bites you.
Now, she whines:
...when we decide that a person is a traitor and should die for having an opinion different from one's own, we cross into territory that puts all freedoms at risk.
I'm truly speechless...
Ms. Parker has lived by this particular sword a good long time,  Helped forge it.  Honed it.  Made a career wielding it with a fearsome glee.

Now she cannot fucking fathom why her newspaper is being stabbed with it by the Republican nominee for president of the United States.

Now everybody be quiet -- cell phones off and no flash photography -- because Ms. Parkers Big Moment is here.
In a normal world, Trump would be booed off the stage. Instead, he is applauded (by some) for adding The Post to his list of journalistic organs denied access to his campaign.

The applause is disheartening, and is evidence that newspapers are little understood or appreciated. This is owing in part to a few notorious fabricators, who were duly punished, as well as a vast array of alternative news sources. But mostly to blame for the demonization of the media broadly are faux news media outlets, Republicans and their cohorts.

For decades now, conservative news sources, many of which are aggregators dependent upon the mainstream media for their bread and butter, have joined radio hosts in blasting traditional news sources. Kill the messenger is their operating principle. Republicans who benefit from this portrayal of the media tender their silence in errant gratitude...
And with a dramatic "thump". Ms. Parker hits the fainting couch like a pro and, like Blue Texan eight years ago, I am speechless.

When Ms. Parker says "faux news", she means Fox News -- an entire, multi-billion dollar Conservative media empire built explicitly around "killing the messenger" and calling people like me a traitor, all day, every day.

When she says "their cohorts" she means the entire, enabling Beltway establishment who rolled over for the GOP strategy of working the refs long ago:

And when she says "Republicans" she means people like Ms. Kathleen Parker.

Because demonizing the media as a tool of the Sekrit Liberal Conspiracy to Destroy Murrica has been the central pillar of Republican white grievance politics since Mr. Parker was in diapers, rubbing strained carrots in her hair.  It was a fully-operational GOP mainstay when William Safire was teaching Spiro Agnew how to say "Nattering nabobs of negativism" and when a young Pat Buchanan was just a barefoot lad, sittin' by the creek, reading "A Child's Golden Book Of Aryan Master Race Theory" and dreaming his big dreams.

And yet only now that Donald Trump has pulled this ancient and filthy sword from the wingnut stone and been declared the King Of All Teabaggers by overwhelming acclamation has Ms. Parker deigned to notice how far into darkness she and the rest of her cohorts have led us:

Mama put my pens in the ground
I shouldn't use them anymore
That cold black cloud is comin' down
Feels like I'm knockin' on Satan's door...


bowtiejack said...

These people. Even Dr. Frankenstein would have said something to the effect of "Oops! My bad."

Good stuff. Keep calling them out.

The Nation has a very nice analysis of how women particularly recognize Trump for what he is (even if it escapes highly trained and experienced "journalists") Hint: today's phrase is "Household Hitler":

Doug Woodard said...

Who is that singing "Knockin' on Heaven's Door"? It's not Dylan....

Tom Shefchik said...

As so frequently happens, your serious article made me LOL three times. You're the best.

Nat said...

The media is so bias its ridiculous at this point. This morning you've got the saying that Trump claimed Obama had something to do with the shootings, which is absolutely not true. I'm not saying I support Trump, but when you've got liberal websites soliciting poll votes against him (like you really can't trust anything you read anymore. Its depressing.

Habitat Vic said...

Doug: My thoughts as well, its not Dylan singing, its a cover. My initial thought was John Hiatt. However, Shazam on my smartphone identified it as a cover by the band called Talisman on a Sons of Anarchy soundtrack compilation. Couldn't find it via iTunes, but a search for "Sons of Anarchy - 40 Big Songs Inspired By The Show" found it on Amazon and, sure enough, it is Talisman singing this cover (I have no idea who they are).

Chan Kobun said...

You can stop screaming, the nurse will be around with your pills in a minute.

Belvoir said...

This was magnificent, Drifty. I'm in awe. Thank you.

Kyra said...

I'd say better late than never, but it isn't. How is it so easy for outside looking in to see the incestuous villagers and they can't? Rhetorical. Sort of a circular firing squad.

trgahan said...

As Driftglass has documented, the central problem here isn't Trump. He is just a symptom that could cost them the Senate, several House seats, and a few State houses/Governor Mansions. Worse, with the lost of their Fox News Supreme Court Justice, a whole branch of government.

Trump is the media's convenient excuse for the real problem, which is Republican Party (ALL OF THEM) intentionally constructed this voting base to achieve specific policy goals. They could have easily gone another way, but they'd never achieve their policy goals (ex. destroying what is left of the New Deal) with a more moderate, broader tent.

Even today, they don't want Crazy Uncle Liberty to change one bit because, even after Trump gets frog stomped (more likely BECAUSE Trump will get frog stomped and a liberal women will be President) he will still deliver them their state house, governor mansion, House seats, and occasional Senator. Hell, he'll make sure the local school board is nothing but anti-union, Randite, Creationists.

Trump for media people like Cillizza, Parker, Brooks, et al. just exposes their job, which has always been white washing a Party of willfully ignorant, rabidly bigoted people supporting political policy that will burn the country down. But the base gleefully supports it because they have been promised they get to sit on top of the resulting ash heap.

swkellogg said...

Some days I just have to say: You are among the best of the DFH commentators we've got.

Awesome post.

CardboardCaskets said...

In Japan, they have Living National Treasures, and they just cut a check to those people every year. Could we possibly get that going here?

Bernard Eckholdt said...

Wow. that clip of Cheney! Darth Cheney. Lord of the Underworld. you speak too much truth, lol. you'll never get asked into the Club.

Just watching Cheney... such Evil, unbound, untethered and loose upon the innocent.

Truth hurts worse than anything. You are soooo GOOOOD! lol

Unknown said...

Put this in the WaPo comments.

Gosh, you'll try to do better. How humble. How brave. It takes a Harvard study to get you to face a reality any objective liberal observer of the Beltway media could have revealed to you not just in this election but at any time over the past 20 years, minimum. The news media has consistently and persistently stacked the deck not just in favor of Trump but of every Republican in a position of power for decades. One of the prime reasons a shameless huckster like Trump has made it to the top of the Republican Party is the press's dereliction, its willful ignorance, its refusal to acknowledge the degradation and depravity of the Republican Party but instead force-feed its audiences a fictive brew of false equivalency and both-sides-are-bad exculpations.
You don't need to do better: You need to learn how to do your job.

Neo Tuxedo said...

Which would be more to the point, think you? Putting a highlights reel of this post into a letter to my local paper that ran this column-like extrusion today (Public Opinion), with Cc: to Ms. Parker? Or just emailing her a direct link to the post?

If I had to choose one or other, that is.

driftglass said...

Thank you all, sincerely.

As to Ms. Parker, put it in a letter to the editor. I suspect that Ms. Parker -- like most of her species -- does not read such things and certainly would not be moved by it.

Neo Tuxedo said...

The media is so bias its ridiculous at this point.

Yes. Very bias. Much liberal. Catch my heart, very melon.