Trump World Grab-Bag--A Collection

Sunday, March 13, 2011

I have received a comment Regarding O'Keefe--let me show you it.

Hmmmmm tell the truth about their effort to get housing for hookers and smuggled underage girls and how they hate white middle class Republicans and the jews ....O.K. I agree ....lets see how it works out for them
This is rare.  I don't get very many comments because I have a very small blog, and yet, when I do get a comment, it reveals exactly the thing that's weird about how O'Keefe's MO works on right-wing brains--he gets believed, even though the only person "smuggling underage girls" was an imaginary persona put on by pretend-journalist James O'Keefe.  And the only persons trying to "get housing for hookers" was the pretend "pimp and prostitute" couple of O'Keefe and Giles--allegedly. It was all an exercise in heavily-edited make-believe regarding what some conservatives think goes on behind closed doors--but it wasn't real.

O'Keefe never even really made clear he was supposed to be a pimp to the people he was pranking at ACORN.  It's all a wondrous example of bias-confirmation, but it isn't true just because it "looks true to you". It's only true if....they aren't fucking making up everything, which they were.

But regarding "hating middle-class Republicans"--I suspect we've switched from the bullshit ACORN prank masquerading as journalism to the bullshit NPR prank masquerading as journalism, where the former NPR senior executive Ron Schiller does opine that Tea Partiers are gun-toting racists.  This is apparently a personal opinion of Mr. Schiller, and not necessarily NPR policy--I'm sure reasonable people can discern the difference?  But it isn't an unreasonable opinion--because I'm sure there is some overlap between Tea Partiers and card-carrying NRA members. Also, open-carry tea party/militia groups exist, and it appears to me that several groups considered carrying weapons a part of their exercise of their freedoms and a part of their movement.   I don't know that his statement was either hateful, untruthful, or biased as far as "gun-toting" goes.  If you're gun-toting and you know it clap your hands! (But holster-up first, hombre, I mean, safety first, amirite?) But as for the darker allegation of "racism", well, I'm afraid there's been evidence of that, too, unfortunately. Now, some could argue "Oh it's so subjective." 

Let me make myself  clear--one man's racism isn't another man's cultural pride. If you are a person of honkitude (as I am) making observations about what persons of other ethnicities should/shouldn't do with respect to how they represent themselves, I'm saying you....may have some unexamined white privilege that expresses itself in ways to a) people of color and b) white people who have examined their own privilege, in a way we interpret as racist. If you don't like the sound of that word, please use your problem with it to examine your privilege. We'll wait. But...not long.

Now, on to the "hating Jews" (I capitalize this word, and as a stickler for these things, I wish everyone did). The "Zionist" context was introduced by the O'Keefeian spoofster. Again, to go to Mediaite:

He and the two “MEAC representatives” then engage in an awkward conversation about “Zionist” influence on NPR’s coverage, with one of the men from MEAC opining that “Jews do kind of control the media or, I mean, certainly the Zionists and the people who have the interests in swaying media coverage toward a favorable direction of Israel.” The man thought to be Schiller weighs in, saying that there is no “Zionist or pro-Israel” bias at NPR, despite some of their funds coming from Jewish organizations. Of the American Jewish World Service, the man described as Schiller says, “They are really looking for a fair point of view and many Jewish organizations are not.”

It's his opinion. I don't know where the opinion comes from, but he's responding to an assertion that basically the media is controlled by Jews and they're all Zionists or some such foolishness--how do you respond to that? And what Schiller is saying isn't even that he personally hates Jewish people, just that he thinks some Jewish groups have an agenda. If having an agenda is wrong, everyone's wrong. O'Keefe has an agenda--he's wrong. I have an agenda, I'm wrong. My commenter has an agenda--who doesn't have an opinon? That isn't a hateful comment, it's an opinion.  And opinion is like a pupik. Everyone has one. Also he's obliquely saying that NPR isn't biased.  I think it would be great if he said "Okay, that shit was anti-Jew, and you people have to go now." Unfortunately, this level of principled response isn't widely practiced, and he might actually have felt a diplomatic response that elided the baiting comments was a better step. I don't know. But one guy's opinions don't actually characterize a whole organization.

But if we go back to my premise that O'Keefe lies and edits his information (which people who aren't even liberal, and may share those biases can agree with) to confirm his biases--yes, I think people can agree that this is what he does, and that telling the truth about that would work out really well among the population of people who don't need to have their biases confirmed and dislike being lied to.  I think who the messenger is really does matter, and how he or she tells the story matters, too. It may be true that his targets aren't perfect, and they aren't--but few organizattions or individuals are, whereas he and his tactics aren't simply "imperfect" but set out to be intentionally deceptive. And the result of that sort of deception being tolerated, or worse, embraced, is people believing things even after they've been debunked, as my commenter appears to.

That's simply not journalism. That's junk. And I think it should be called out.

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