RODEO CLOWNS: And a tow truck driver!

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 21, 2013

Part 3—R-bombs is us: Did Paul LePage make a racist remark about Barack Obama?

That’s what the headlines on Joan Walsh’s column at Salon seemed to say. Walsh had opened yesterday’s piece with LePage’s latest alleged remark, a statement the crackpot Maine Republican has now denied making.

Salon’s headline writer wrote this:
GOP racism of 2009: Still alive and well
Maine's Tea Party governor is sure that the president "hates white people." The party just keeps producing nut-jobs
In her column, Walsh never explicitly says that LePage’s alleged remark was “racist.” But that’s where the headline went.

Did LePage make a racist remark? If he made the statement which has been (anonymously) reported, he certainly made a stupid remark. But that would be nothing new for LePage, one of the biggest, dumbest loudmouths in our pitiful modern politics.

In this morning’s New York Times, Katharine Seelye looks for an appropriate phrase with which to describe LePage’s inanity. In the highlighted passage, she recalls one of his “startlingly blunt assertions”—possibly the stupidest of his many stupid remarks:
SEELYE (8/21/13): The problem for Mr. LePage, as even some of his allies acknowledge, is that whether or not he made this particular comment, he has made so many other startlingly blunt assertions that while one more may not matter, the accumulation of such comments could. Taken together, they could add up to a major vulnerability for him as he faces re-election next year.

[...]

Last year, he compared the Internal Revenue Service to the Gestapo. “The Holocaust was a horrific crime against humanity and, frankly, I would never want to see that repeated. Maybe the I.R.S. is not quite so bad—yet.” He later apologized.
The IRS isn’t quite as bad as the Holocaust! LePage may even be well-intentioned. But he is a geyser of nonsense. And uh-oh:

As American culture fragments into tribes; as American media is further “democratized;” the startling dumbness of folk like LePage defines a major part of our gigantic national problem.

For many years, such dumbness tended to stay underground as the nation’s discourse was regulated by a handful of major media figures, “wise men” like Walter and David. Now, the parameters of the discourse are defined by media figures like Rush and Sean—and Maureen, and Chris Matthews.

People are now encouraged to be loud and stupid. Folk like LePage take the prompt.

That said, LePage is a numbskull of the pseudo-right. Is it possible that the for-profit and corporate new orgs of the pseudo-left are now developing their own form of inanity?

We’d have to say that they are. Beyond that, we’d say that the characteristic inanity of us on the pseudo-left turns on our great desire to drop our pleasing R-bombs.

In the world of corporate and for-profit media, race and gender have become the central organizing principle of ersatz liberalism. In our view, this is creating a Very Dumb Politics of the ersatz left.

We also think that this is serving as a beard for plutocrat interests—that race is being used, again, to distract regular people from plutocrats’ financial interests. For more than a century, race was used to distract working-class whites way from their actual financial interests. Now, it almost seems like race is being used to distract college-educated white liberals.

One thing is certain: In our for-profit and corporate media, we pseudo-liberals love to drop our R-bombs. It’s the cream we get in our coffee, the joy of our tribalized world.

Just consider the pleasing way Rachel Maddow started last night. Giving her viewers the thing they most crave, she told a rather selective story about a non-person person.

Her story concerned a tow truck driver. This is the way she began, speaking as if to third graders:
MADDOW (8/20/13): Thanks to you at home for staying with us for the next hour.

The city of Winston-Salem has not quite a quarter million people in it. It is a substantial city.

Big companies are based there. Several colleges are based there. Winston-Salem is the fifth largest city in the state of North Carolina.

The mayor of Winston-Salem right now is this man [showing photo]; his name is Allen Joines. He is a Democrat, and he is up for reelection as mayor this year.

The challenger on the Republican side is this man, James Lee Knox. He works for a local towing company. And despite being the only Republican challenging the incumbent mayor of Winston-Salem for the mayor’s job, James Lee Knox has just lost the support of his local Republican Party.
Already, viewers had been played a tad. Winston-Salem isn’t just a substantial city. It’s a thoroughly Democratic city.

No Republican ran for mayor in 2005 or 2009. This time around, the local GOP leadership says it tried to recruit a dozen candidates, but no one was willing to run.

Knox, who works for the towing company, placed his name on the ballot himself, thus becoming the only Republican in the race. Anyone can place his own name on the ballot, of course.

Essentially, Knox is a random guy who decided to run for mayor. There was never a chance he could possibly win. There is no sign that he ever represented anyone but himself.

That said, Maddow earns her millions of dollars in part by giving us rubes our nightly treats. In our view, what follows only makes the liberal/progressive mind that much weaker and dumber.

This is what the cable star said as she continued her tale:
MADDOW (continuing directly): The Forsythe County Republican Party has announced that they no longer support James Lee Knox in his bid to become the next mayor of Winston-Salem. This comes after Mr. Knox admitted using what the local paper describes as several derogatory terms, including the N-word, in a confrontation with a local elections worker last year.

Mr. Knox acknowledged that he used the racial slur after the 2012 election. He said he was trying to find out the name of a black elections employee with whom he had exchanged words during early voting. During a conversation with another county worker, Mr. Knox referred to the woman using several derogatory terms, including the N-word.

Mr. Knox says he does not believe in using such words but that he, quote, "got frustrated." That’s how he explains it. He got frustrated. You know, you get frustrated and out pops the N-word! She was bla-a-ack! You know, as you do.

So reportedly, the state Republican Party in North Carolina decided to not get involved in this situation in Winston-Salem, but the local party did drop their support for Mr. Knox. After initially telling the local paper that he felt that the local Republican Party had stabbed him in the back, well, tonight Mr. Knox officially just quit the race.

I think this has happened early enough that it probably means his name will be off the ballot and that means the winner of the Democratic primary in Winston-Salem will go on to run for mayor without any Republican opponent at all.
To watch this segment, click here.

As everyone except Maddow’s viewers may know, it won’t make a lick of difference whether Knox’s name appears on the ballot or not, and it never would have. Nor it is especially clear that the local GOP ever “supported” Knox in any real way.

In the local news report from which Maddow’s staff worked, the local GOP chairman is quoted saying that the party won’t “endorse” Knox. Formulations about loss of “support” come from the local reporter.

Sadly but unremarkably, a tow truck driver in Winston-Salem is locked in the past, to some unknown extent, concerning so-called race. That’s a sad artifact of our brutal and tragic American history. But why did it open Maddow’s program on The One True Liberal Channel?

In one way, this could have been played as a “good news” story. This is what the head of the local Republican Party said about Knox’s behavior:

“A person who talks like that and is crude in that fashion just doesn’t represent who we are as a party, and we can’t endorse someone like that.”

Good for Scott Cumbie, chairman of the Forsyth County Republican Party! It could be treated as a unifying event, a mark of progress, when white politicians in North Carolina reject such conduct that way.

But on The One True Liberal Channel, we all understand the pleasing role race will always play. Last night, we were offered this opening anecdote as a tasty tribal treat, as a way of telling us something untrue:

We are the truly good decent people. They are the very bad people.

Throughout the sweep of human history, it has always been tempting but unwise to believe formulations like that. This takes us back to Walsh’s column, where the headline gave us a similar treat, a bit of a pseudo-lib Milk Bone.

Did Paul LePage make a racist remark, if he said what has been alleged?

If he said what has been alleged, he certainly made a stupid remark. (In Times Talk, he was “startlingly blunt.”) But increasingly, stupid remarks aren’t just for the right any more.

In for-profit liberal media, we’re constantly handed pleasing treats about the other tribe’s racism. It’s easy, fun and profitable to build a liberal cable politics around issues of gender and race—and issues of gender and race are, of course, an obvious part of any real progressive politics.

But as we watch the grasping children who have been hired to create this new world, we keep getting a funny feeling. We get the feeling that race is working, once again, as a great distraction.

Rachel rushes to tell us about a tow truck driver. She doesn’t seem to say a whole lot about issues of corporate looting.

This darling child has never mentioned the giant front-page reports in the Times about the enormous amounts of looting which characterize typify American health care. (North Carolina Republicans get looted this way; so do we Yankee liberals.)

This ongoing front-page series is going to win the Pulitzer Prize. It concerns massive looting by the interests which support Maddow’s owners.

Maddow hasn’t mentioned this high-profile series, not even once. But she rarely fails to let you know if some tow-truck driver somewhere makes a racist remark.

Meanwhile, Walsh returned, several times, to the allegedly vile racial conduct of that rodeo clown in Sedalia, Missouri. So desperate are we for our racial fix that we are now actually complaining about the conduct of rodeo clowns. More pathetically, we’re inventing facts about rodeo clowns to let us enjoy our fix.

Is race being used in the ugly old way, as a way of distracting the rubes? We’re not sure, but it’s plainly being used in a way that dumbs down the left. This also increases the tribal divisions which serve conservative and plutocrat interests.

Deep tribal division means nothing can work. That's the fundamental goal of the pseudo-conservative world!

Tomorrow, we’ll see what Wagner and Capehart said about that troubling rodeo clown. The Dumb isn’t just for LePage any more, we will be forced to suggest.

Tomorrow: Blackface, she said!

Another fine misdirection: Always check your wallet when Maddow's staff starts typing! This part of the TV star's tale was also a bit misleading:
MADDOW: So reportedly, the state Republican Party in North Carolina decided to not get involved in this situation in Winston-Salem, but the local party did drop their support for Mr. Knox. After initially telling the local paper that he felt that the local Republican Party had stabbed him in the back, well, tonight Mr. Knox officially just quit the race.
From that, you might get the impression that the state GOP decided not to sanction Knox, so the locals had to take action.

In the local report from which Maddow was working, the chronology worked the other way. The local GOP cut Knox loose. Knox tried to appeal to the state GOP, but they declined to help.

As best we can tell, Maddow’s a tribal true believer. In our view, it pays to be wary when she starts telling her tales.

86 comments:

  1. Yes, Bob. Maddow sure seems to be picking the low-hanging fruit here.

    It's kind of like scouring the cable news channels for silly report about bear and shark attacks and call that typical of all cable news reporting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "call that typical of all cable news reporting"

      Is that what happened? No.

      But good point otherwise, Mr. Head-In-The-Sand.

      (Because, see, the rest isn't a "good point, either: Somerby doesn't mainly accuse Maddow of picking easy targets, he accuses her of "making the liberal/progressive mind that much weaker and dumber" through misdirection and misstatement. Your comment doesn't stand as a sign that he's wrong about that.)

      Delete
    2. " . . . he accuses her of "making the liberal/progressive mind that much weaker and dumber" through misdirection and misstatement."

      Watch the segment he links to. Please.

      Delete
    3. Yup, Watched it. She's playing you for a fool. She withholds the facts that make the Knox story a big nothing. And you appear to be willing to countenance that. And you don't like anyone saying so. Surprise.

      Delete
    4. So you still think that segment was about "the Knox story"? Oh, good grief!

      Delete
  2. "Used to Love this Blog"August 21, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    "LePage is a numbskull of the pseudo-right. Is it possible that the for-profit and corporate new orgs of the pseudo-left are now developing their own form of inanity?"

    No. Or it's irrelevant. Or it's a false equivalence. Or lalalalala I can't hear you. Or why do you hate Irish Catholic Americans so much. Or anyone who agrees with this isn't a free-thinker like me. Or whatever. But no. My side shouldn't be criticised for this.

    Maddow wrote a loverly book, sez me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Or why do you hate Irish Catholic Americans so much."

      exactly. thank you. can be traced back to fifth century a.d. britton (britain).

      Delete
  3. Thanks for the link, Bob. Now for your fans who will just take your word for it and not bother to follow the link, here is what that segment was all about.

    Maddow used Knox as an example of how college towns in North Carolina are the last remaining strongholds of the Democratic Party, even to the point that the GOP can't find a decent candidate to even put his name on the ballot for mayor. She quickly noted that Knox was such a racist crackpot that even the local GOP disavowed him, the state GOP refused to get involved, and absent any support, Knox withdrew his candidacy.

    And she spent all of two minutes of a 15-minute segment on Knox.

    The rest of her segment was devoted to detailing the extraordinary efforts that GOP controlled legislature and election boards are taking to suppress the vote in college towns.

    So rather than just another case of those awful liberals throwing around the R-word, Maddow actually did a very serious segment on a very serious subject that is at the very heart of our democratic process.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is the guy really a racist because he used the n-word once when he was frustrated? Doesn't racism have to rise to a standard of motivated discrimination against people of another race, not just saying an epithet when angry? Racism in the past involved lynching. Today it governs what you say when you swear at someone. I think using this individual as an example of racism is like calling the IRS the gestapo.

      Delete
    2. Someone who lets his true racist language choice slip out when he is upset (i.e., has less control) displays his racism front and center.

      Agree with the 'anonymous' poster above who noted the segment on Knox was a minor point in a larger piece with a clear message that if the GOP can't elect their way to power fair and square they have to resort to dirty tricks that suppress the vote.

      Delete
    3. Oh, I agree , 12:56.

      But even if our friend doesn't want to say Knox is a racist without evidence that he lynched somebody, is a guy who calls a black woman that word in a moment of "frustration" the kind of guy he wants as mayor of his city?

      I certainly wouldn't want him as mayor of mine.

      Delete
    4. Anon10:58, I just watched the link. What reason would Maddow have for mentioning the story of Knox at all in a piece alleging voter suppression in NC?

      You mention that the story on Knox was discussed for only two minutes in a 15 minute segment, and yet you don't then find it incongruent that she would lead into a story about voter suppression with a tale that implies that racist Knox had been the Great White Hope of the local Republican Party and now had to be disavowed?

      If Maddow had only wanted to make the point that Reps couldn't find anyone to run, (and that this fact is part and parcel of why they must suppress the vote) it would have been more accurate for her to say
      only that some local crackpot, which the party had nothing to do with, had put his name on the ballot.

      No, in this incongruent and implication laden lead-in, Maddow is connecting Knox, a guy just off the street, with Republicans and republicanism in NC.

      That's the trick of he trade, she excels at it, and her fans eat it like candy.


      Delete
    5. Oh, so we can't argue against what Maddow actually said. We're going to go after what she "implies."

      Spoken like a true tribal warrior.

      Now here is how Maddow closed her segment. Please tell me what she "implies."

      "We've been reporting this story for as long as this show's been on the air. We've been reporting on voter suppression and protecting the right to vote. And every time you get sort-of national level Democrats to talk about it, they tell you how bad the problem is and they tell you how much it must be fought. But the fight has been a state-to-state fight and a lot of it has been a legal fight, and a little bit of it has been a legislative fight. But to imagine the national Democratic Party waging a national 50-state political fight on this subject, I feel like that's something everybody's been waiting for. Everybody's been covering this. Everybody's been watching his happen for years, has been waiting for. This rollout of this American Values First thing has been very subtle. And that was certainly their first national TV appearance. We shall see if this turns into a big deal."

      Delete
    6. Anon3:42, please explain to me how Maddow's lead-in story about Knox is congruent with or has anything to do with a charge of voter suppression in NC.

      Delete
    7. Asked and answered, Cecelia. See both above and below.

      Delete
    8. See my reply at 4:19pm and try again to explain how Knox and his racist name-calling illustrates anything about Dem domination of the city or voter suppression charges.

      Delete
    9. Honest to God, Cecelia, you are the living example of that old Monty Python bit about the guy who paid to have an argument, and got only contradiction.

      Delete
    10. Well, then start making arguments rather than mere contradictions, Anon.

      Delete
  4. I watched the first few minutes. Maddow says Republicans are claiming that students who live on campus should not be counted as residents, so they cannot vote or run for office based on their campus address. Maddow doesn't bother to explain the legal basis for the Republican action. I would suppose the theory is that a college campus cannot be one's permanent home address. For all I know, that might be legally correct.

    Maddow goes on to give two examples of black colleges where the Republicans are using this theory to prevent some students from voting. By choosing black colleges as examples, she implies that the Republican effort is race-based. However, I would imagine that Republicans might be applying this legal theory to all colleges. If so, this would be an example of Maddow imputing racism to an action that's aimed at college students in general.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Once again, folks, don't take my word, David in Cal's word, or anybody else's word about what the segment was all about.

      Watch it. Please.

      Delete
  5. Meanwhile, Walsh returned, several times, to the allegedly vile racial conduct of that rodeo clown in Sedalia, Missouri."

    And for the record, here in their entirety are the "several times" Walsh referred to the rodeo clown incident in the piece Somerby links to.

    "A rodeo clown in an Obama mask exhorted a Missouri State Fair crowd to cheer for him to be trampled by bulls."

    Then at the tail end of her piece:

    "I don’t remember anyone cheering for a Bush rodeo clown to be trampled by bulls in effigy."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And for the record, yes, Walsh's second (and final) reference is dumb. Just because she doesn't remember it doesn't mean it never happened.

      But still. Two sentences in a rather long piece equals "several times"?

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    4. sev·er·al (svr-l, svrl)
      adj.
      1. Being of a number more than two or three but not many: several miles away.

      http://www.thefreedictionary.com/several


      -warren peece, tdh ombudsman

      Delete
    5. Yesterday, we heard a lecture how journalists should follow the lead of Trident gum and use actual numbers when they are available.

      So why couldn't Somerby bring himself to write: "Meanwhile, Walsh returned, twice, to the allegedly vile racial conduct of that rodeo clown in Sedalia, Missouri."

      Delete
    6. Now, what's important:

      The exact number of times that Walsh mentioned rodeo clowns, yesterday. Very few, really!

      Yesterday, what was important:

      That *Somerby* shouldn't mention the rodeo clowns at all. Old news!

      Delete
    7. Yes, on the very day that Somerby castigated Maddow for reporting on a 60-year-old story that couldn't possibly be relevant today.

      After all, we have a series to write about the vile rodeo clown incident that had already run its course in a matter of days.

      Do as i say, not as I do.

      And the very day after he castigates the NYT for not doing as Trident did and use real numbers, we find Bob has trouble counting to two.

      Do as I say, not as I do.

      Delete
    8. Already ran its course, but for the fact that Walsh had to revisit it in her Salon column on the very day you were moaning about *Somerby* being the one supposedly refusing to drop it.

      You're as much a clown as she is. But you're a flyspeck, thank the gods.

      Delete
    9. Ah, I get it. Two sentences is "revisiting" it. And "two" means "several."

      My what an Orwellian world we live in.

      For the record, I happened to find the Walsh piece rather silly, and certainly not even worth the bandwidth it took Somerby to comment on it.

      But when you are looking for low-hanging fruit . . .

      Delete
    10. So, Walsh's silliness should should stand -- it's not worth the bandwidth to criticise it.

      But, when Somerby, ignoring your sagely opinion, goes ahead and criticises it -- it is worth your bandwidth to make a big deal over that!

      So you essentially stand for Walsh's right to be uncriticised and you'll brook any amount of bandwidth in defense of her silliness being uncriticised.

      Delete
    11. I really don't care that Somerby wants to take on Walsh. I just wish he'd do so without resorting to the tricks he once so roundly condemned.

      Longtime readers of TDH will recall Somerby brilliantly exposing this little journalistic trick.

      "Several sources within the Democratic Party . . ." And then they would actually quote one or two. And usually "under the condition of anonymity." Somerby would brilliantly ask how "one or two" became "several."

      It's a cheap trick whether its done by Joan Walsh, Maureen Dowd, Gail Collins, Rachel Maddow . . . or Bob Somerby.

      Delete
    12. Of cure you think that, Anon 3:48.

      In their frenzied effort to plague a blog site with a plethora of superfluous criticism, trolls are illogical and shameless.

      So you truly are suggesting that there is no reasonable difference in the reporting on the statistical results of polling, from a comment that a.journalist has done more than one story on a topic.

      We understand your argument here and we understand the utter indignity of troll disingenuousness.

      Delete
  6. Sorry, calling him a " numbskull" is worse than calling him racist.

    You continue your descent into ridiculousness.

    Maybe you should cut back your diet of Dowd, Collins et al.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Calling him a " numbskull" is worse than calling him racist."

      The comments here continue their descent into ridiculousness.

      Maddow's IS a clown show. Dowd and Collins ARE awful.

      Delete
    2. Watch the segment. Please.

      Delete
    3. Already did.

      This is absolutely true:

      "Winston-Salem isn’t just a substantial city. It’s a thoroughly Democratic city."

      "No Republican ran for mayor in 2005 or 2009. This time around, the local GOP leadership says it tried to recruit a dozen candidates, but no one was willing to run."

      "Knox, who works for the towing company, placed his name on the ballot himself, thus becoming the only Republican in the race. Anyone can place his own name on the ballot, of course."

      "Essentially, Knox is a random guy who decided to run for mayor. There was never a chance he could possibly win. There is no sign that he ever represented anyone but himself."

      "As everyone except Maddow’s viewers may know, it won’t make a lick of difference whether Knox’s name appears on the ballot or not, and it never would have. Nor it is especially clear that the local GOP ever “supported” Knox in any real way. "

      Shorter:

      >> Maddow plays her viewers. Again. <<


      Some of us Just Can't Stand to have that pointed out, so we moan about Somerby ignoring so much Other Serious Stuff Maddow allegedly does.

      Delete
    4. Great. You watched the two minutes your fearless leader wanted you to watch and you regurgitate his take on it like a good tribal warrior. Now go watch the other 13 -- you know, the part he ignores -- and come back and comment on that.

      I know it might be hard, given that your leader hasn't told you what to think about it yet. But give it a try.

      Delete
    5. The mechanics of how pseudo-journalists deceive are fascinating, and can really help refine your bullshit detector. If you strip down the entertainment portions of the posts on this blog you can really learn how important phrasing is when reporting details. No matter who Somerby is deconstructing, whether it is a favorite of yours or not, learning to read more skeptically will help you when reading, watching, or listening to all media.

      It's like the lesson I learned a long time ago from some other fly in the ointment. When you read the paper, say you read twenty articles. If one of those articles is about a discipline or subject that you have a lot of experience with, you notice all kinds of errors. So often, you come to the probably correct conclusion that the writer just doesn't know that much about the subject matter. But here is the important bit: the other nineteen articles you swallow whole. It is very difficult to see your own ignorance.

      Somerby's posts help so much to help you recognize certain devices that should decrease your credulousness. The example a couple of posts ago regarding the phrase "much more" is quite helpful. Now, when you read that in any story, if you are a good learner, there will be a voice in your head that says, "how much more?"

      So to the legion of Somerby haters out there, one question: who else does this so well?

      Delete
    6. Very good advice indeed.

      Now apply it to Somerby as well, instead of being so quick to label those who do as merely "haters."

      Delete
    7. "So to the legion of Somerby haters out there, one question: who else does this so well?"

      >>> cromwell

      Delete
    8. "The comments here continue their descent into ridiculousness."

      >>> how could you have a serious comments section on a clown show of a blog like this?

      Delete
    9. I don't think there are a legion of Somerby haters out there. I would hazard a guess that there aren't more than a few score Somerby readers out there. Somerby if often on point. Sometimes Somerby is out there too.

      PPP

      Delete
    10. And judging by the Web sites that track Internet traffic, your guess is pretty accurate.

      You know, without saying this was the reason he updated his blog a couple of years ago to include a combox, can you imagine how few readers he'd have left without it?

      Delete
    11. just ceceliamc

      Delete
    12. Since certainly fewer than a dozen people are regular commenters here, I'd say the majority of folks who read this blog -- however few they too may be -- that majority not only do not comment, but having dipped their toes into the comments sections once or twice in the past, probably do not even bother to read them anymore, sticking only to Somerby's posts instead.

      And who could blame them?

      lowercaseguy and David in CA are the longest-running, clearly-identifiable frequent posters: their comments are, in the former case borderline insane, and in the second case reliably low-information libertarian trolling.

      The next-most common form of comment here is of the variety that says Somerby's entire project is illegitimate, liberal-media apologetics effectively: "liberal" media shouldn't be critiqued in this way -- either because right-wing media is worse, "liberal" media is irrelevant anyway, "liberal" media really isn't liberal, etc.

      Though there are some voices of sanity here both leftish (deadrat) and rightish (CeceliaMc) -- there's no denying that insanity, trolling and apologetics characterize the greater part of what occurs beneath the fold.

      Delete
    13. Thanks thanks, Gutnonymous, but I'm not "rightish".

      I'm conservative through and through.

      Delete
  7. And now, as Paul Harvey said, here is the rest of the story after Maddow spent two minutes on Mr. Knox:

    The election board in Boone, N.C., has shut down an on-campus voting site at Appalachian State and limited early voting one one site, serving some 9,300 voters. That site is a mile away from campus with no public transportation access, and linked to the campus by a 45 mph road with no sidewalks.

    In Elizabeth City, a student at Elizabeth City State was ruled ineligible because of residency requirements to run for city council, even though he was a duly registered voter -- the only residency requirement for candidates to city council.

    In Winston-Salem, the election board tabled a proposal to shut down an on-campus voting site at Winston-Salem State after a storm of protest. They said they will take it up again "next year."

    Across the state of North Carolina, the "Moral Mondays" movement is growing in protest of the hard-right turn taken by the GOP-dominated legislature, on issues that not only include voter suppression, but reproductive rights, cuts in education funding, and others. Moral Monday protests have drawn thousands in cities across North Carolina, and 81-year-old State Sen. Ellie Kinnard has resigned her office to devote full-time to the movement.

    And finally, the national Democratic Party has announced a "50-state strategy" to combat voter suppression efforts throughout the nation. She spent the final five minutes of the segment interviewing Michael Sargeant, the head of the American Values First Project.

    But don't take my word for it. Watch the segment.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. NONE of which makes the Knox segment any less of a joke and a playing of her audience.

      Delete
    2. Except for one, tiny, eentsy, weensty detail.

      The "Knox segment" wasn't a "segment" at all. Nor, as it turns out, was another egregious example of a vile "pseudo-liberal" throwing around the "R word."

      It was simply the lead-in to illustrate where the remaining Democratic stongholds are in North Carolina, leading into a much broader segment about the efforts to suppress votes and deny candidates the ballot in those areas, as well as the growing protest movement in North Carolina, ending in the national Democratic Party's efforts to take on this issue nationwide.

      Sorry, fella, but the only one being played here is you. Enjoy the dance as Somerby fiddles.


      Delete
    3. Anon3:12 please explain how the story of Knox is congruent with a story charging voter suppression in NC.

      Delete
    4. Yes, this sounds like classic Maddow. The Republicans are evil, stupid, and racist, and the national Democratic Party is trying to get more voters out, which is great!

      Two! Four! Six! Eight!
      Who do we appreciate?
      Dem-o-crats! Yea!!


      But your comment is great, too. The baby talk, and the technically accurate, but false, refutation of her being a "vile 'pseudo-liberal' throwing around the 'R word.'" No, she just said:

      This comes after Mr. Knox admitted using what the local paper describes as several derogatory terms, including the N-word, in a confrontation with a local elections worker last year.

      Mr. Knox acknowledged that he used the racial slur after the 2012 election. He said he was trying to find out the name of a black elections employee with whom he had exchanged words during early voting. During a conversation with another county worker, Mr. Knox referred to the woman using several derogatory terms, including the N-word.

      Mr. Knox says he does not believe in using such words but that he, quote, "got frustrated." That’s how he explains it. He got frustrated. You know, you get frustrated and out pops the N-word! She was bla-a-ack! You know, as you do.


      That's not calling someone racist. No way.

      Delete
    5. Asked and answered several times, Cecelia.

      The Knox lead-in was there to demonstrate that Winston-Salem, a college town, is such a Democratic stronghold that they can't find a non-crackpot to run for mayor, not even one that the local GOP won't soon disavow.

      Then she segues into voter suppression attempts in other North Carolina college towns, including Winston-Salem.

      But by all means, continue to remain willfully and blissfully ignorant, and pretend that surely, Maddow must "imply" something entirely different.

      Delete
    6. So, 4:00, is she calling him a racist (a word I find nowhere in your citation) or is she merely explaining why even the local GOP wanted no part of this loon?

      Delete
    7. That's no answer, Anon4:20.

      How does the tale of Knox' racism relate to or illustrate Dem domination in the city? Republicans neither found Knox, nor avowed him. He was just right off the street. Why tell this tale of his racism, and then tsk-tsk it in the manner that Maddow did?

      How in the world does a story about some yokel signing up to challenge the mayor even illustrate a story voter suppression?

      Why would you need to suppress the vote in a town where the mayor is essentially running unopposed?

      You're being willfully obtuse here. Maddow used this story as a means of suggesting that Knox is a typical NC Republican.

      Delete
    8. Uh, Cecelia? Are you really this dense?

      OK, maybe the 10th time it's been said is the charm.

      Knox's "tale of racism" (if you insist on continuing to focus on those few seconds of a 15-minute report) illustrates the point that the GOP in Winston-Salem would rather leave the ballot blank than to have this guy as their standard-bearer for mayor. And the "Dem domination" in that city is so secure that they can't find any other GOPer to run for mayor.

      Capiche?

      Now please, go watch the other 13 minutes of that report and comment on anything there. Are you able to since Bob hasn't given you his take on it yet? Because you sure are twisting yourself into a pretzel trying to avoid it.

      Delete
    9. Oh and Cecilia, not only was it AN answer, but it was THE answer as any fair viewing of the entire segment would demonstrate.

      You know, John Oliver said on the Daily Show last night that the Internet was the place people go to read opinions they already agree with.

      Is that why you are such a devoted fan of Somerby?

      Delete
    10. Anon 6:28, that's an interesting summation because it agrees with Somerby's contention that Maddow was suggesting that Knox had been a chosen GOP candidate and had been avowed by the party before he used a racist epithet.

      None of that is true.

      Maddow didn't need Knox to make a point about the Dem domination in Winston-Salem and she didn't need him to make a point about voter suppression in a town where the mayor is essentially unchallenged.

      She told Knox' story in order to link him to the local GOP and with Republicans in general.

      Delete
    11. "suggesting that Knox had been a chosen GOP candidate"?

      Cecelia, my dear child, Maddow said the exact opposite! She stated explicitly that nobody asked Knox to run, and the only reason he was the sole candidate on the GOP primary ballot is because they couldn't find any candidate at all to run for the office.

      And no, she didn't "link him to the local GOP." She was quite clear and quick in stating he was disavowed by "the local GOP." You'd know that if you actually watched the segment like you said you did.

      Now did she "need" Knox to make a point about Dem domination in Winston-Salem? I suppose not. She might have found another way to do it. But I think she did it quite effectively with Knox. For about two minutes, before moving on to the next 13.



      Delete
    12. Anon 6:32, you've yet to answer why Maddow needed to lead off a story on Dem domination in parts of NC with a story about a local crackpot who had no connection with the local GOP.

      (pssstt..she was trying to link him to them.)

      You have not answered why this local crank's story should be told in order to support a change of voter suppression either.

      (pssst...Maddow is suggesting Knox is the typical GOP candidate and that's why they must suppress voters to win.)

      As to your other comments. You are as correct as usual. I'm a conservative. I"m only here to have my ears tickled about Al Gore, corporate malfeasance, the ill-treatment of the Clintons, the genesis of political tribalism via Fox News, and the scourge of various Republican pariahs.

      I'm so militant that I find criticism a political threat. that's why I'm here brainlessly tag-teaming Somerby with my fellow brain dead Somerby denouncers.

      You got me.

      Delete
    13. Thanks, Anon7:07, you are correct.

      Maddow knew that Knox was not sought, vetted, or asked to run by the GOP. That he was only there on the ballot because he signed himself up. And she still felt it necessary to point out that he had used the n-word.

      Just the fact that the GOP hadn't found an official candidate would have been enough to communicate the fact that the town is Dem nominated.

      What's more, Knox' candidacy makes no statement about voter suppression, he's not an endorsed candidate, and his candidacy is no threat to the mayor.

      She merely wanted to tell the tale of a guy who uses the n-word signing onto the Republican ticket. She merely wanted to suggest that he is representative of Republicans.

      If he'd been the town drunk who'd spent three days drying out in jail, she'd have never bothered.

      Delete
    14. Sigh.

      Cecelia, you certainly would wear out the patience of Job.

      Maybe, maybe, just entertain this notion for a second, that Maddow found it "necessary" to bring up the n-word incident because THAT WAS THE REASON THE LOCAL GOP DISAVOWED HIM as documented in the local media.

      In no way, shape or form did she even hint that he was "representative of Republicans." Once again, she very quickly pointed out that the LOCAL GOP DISAVOWED HIM. How on earth could anybody possibly glean from that that she was trying to paint Knox as "representative of Republicans"?

      As for your hypothetical, I can think of no reason Maddow wouldn't have reported that the LOCAL GOP DISAVOWED HIM because he was the town drunk, and he was the only Republican candidate who would run for mayor.

      But then again, you'd be here saying that Maddow was really, realy saying that the town drunk was representative of Republicans.

      So Cecelia, since you can't get a single thing right about the first two minutes, do you have anything to say about the next 13? Or did you watch the segment at all?

      Delete

    15. "In no way, shape or form did she even hint that he was "representative of Republicans."



      Oh,sure,Anon8:21.

      That's why she said this:

      The Forsythe County Republican Party has announced that they no longer support James Lee Knox in his bid to become the next mayor of Winston-Salem.

      Delete
    16. The GOP in NC NEVER avowed Knox in the first place.

      That's why he's superfluous to her story in every way.

      Delete
    17. So Cecelia, who then is Maddow saying is, your words, "representative of Republicans"?

      James Lee Knox? The Forsythe County Republican Party who not only publicly disavowed him but, his words, stabbed him in the back? Both? Or perhaps neither?

      Maybe she is just reporting what happened, and using that story to demonstrate how strong the Democratic Party is in areas where there is an effort to suppress voter turnout.

      Delete
    18. No, Anon10:58pm, by suggesting that the Republicans "no longer support" Knox and that Knox "just lost the support of his local Republican Party", when there is no evidence that the local GOP ever supported him in the first place, Maddow is misleading her viewers.

      Support from a political party generally comes in the form of money and man-power.

      There is no evidence that Knox got either. There's no evidence that he was ever chosen, vetted, invited, or funded.

      The story of Knox and his racism has no logical tie-in with DNC strength in the area. Knox and his racism are not indicative of how low the party had to go in order to get a candidate, because Knox was never their choice in the first place.

      The story of Knox and his racism has no logical tie to voter suppression since turn-out in not a matter of concern in a virtually uncontested race.

      This was an opportunity to tell a tale about a Republican racist, without even the knowledge that the man is anyone more political than a local who might have a beef with the mayor.

      If Knox had merely been a drunk, Maddow would have never have mentioned this unconnected crank.

      However, the devolution of politics into racial and gender issue bomb-throwing made it much too compelling an opportunity for Maddow to pass up a story about a guy who had signed up to be the Republican candidate and then used the n-word.

      It's that devolution that was the point of this piece.



      Delete
    19. Still hung up about the first two minutes and parsing every word of it just to find something you can twist into an argument you think you can win, and you just keep digging your hole deeper and deeper.

      The point of this piece was clearly expressed by Somerby himself: "Part 3 -- R-bombs is us."

      Regardless of whether you or Somerby personally approved of how she spent the first two minutes of a 15-minute segment, even there she didn't throw any R-bombs. She pointed out an incident, widely publicized in Winston-Salem, as the reason the local GOP

      Then she moved into a discussion about how there is a systematic effort underway to suppress voter turnout in the remaining Democratic strongholds in North Carolina, including college towns like Winston-Salem. She then spoke of the growing citizen protests across the state against the hard-right turn taken by the state legislature on several issues, including voting rights.

      You know what's really sad. Given all the blood that has been shed over voting rights -- from the Revolutionary War through the Civil Rights movement -- you would think this would be one issue that would transcend liberal/conservative labels. What could be more fundamental to a democracy than voting rights?

      But we don't want to go there, do we? That would mean actually discussing the substance of Maddows report.





      Delete
    20. Anon (Defender of Maddow),

      Aren't you asking to have it both ways? You want Maddow's "they no longer support" formulation not to be taken literally, but cannot find "the R-word" in her crystal-clear portrait of Knox.

      But you really, really want to talk about "Moral Mondays." Well, it still strikes me as just uncritical cheerleading for a Democratic Party grass-roots initiative. You say that she's discussing voting rights, which transcends divisions, but it's part of this report because it's affecting Democratic strongholds.

      Now, I don't watch her, so I could be wrong on this, but with her comprehensive reporting on health care, did she ever explain why the Democratic Party were such horrible negotiators that they conceded single-payer so quickly that it wasn't even allowed in the earliest discussions? Because as someone interested in liberal policies, not necessarily just electing Democrats, I would like to understand that one.

      Delete
    21. Anon9:00am, you are truly an even-keel sort of person, who readily discerns what is really important.

      It's not important to you that Maddow words make it seem to her audience that the local GOP had supported Knox and only withdrew that support after he berated a woman as being a nigger.

      It's not important to you that by suggesting that the Knox tale is illustrative of republican disarray in Winston-Salem and democratic dominance, Maddow furthers the notion that Knox is philosophically connected to the NC Republican Party and part of its trouble.

      It's not important to you that by beginning her segment about charges of Republican malfeasance in NC with the tale of Knox, she set the tone as to why republicans have been rejected in these NC enclaves and therefore has used Knox as Exhibit A in proving the need for GOP shenanigans.

      After all, Maddow said that the Republican Party "finally" withdrew their support from this man after he several times called a black woman polling station worker a nigger, but Maddow never expressly called Knox a racist! She never hurled the r-bomb at republicans!

      Well, it's open-minded of you, Anon9:00am to find no offense whatsoever in these Maddow machinations. You truly know what the important story is here.

      What a guy...

      Delete
  8. Poo Poo Platter (Lefty Left Overs Over Easy)

    Our analysts were fearful for the poor Salon headline writer who allowed powerful media critic Bob (gets results!) Somerby to launch into a favorite narrative, the race card players of the modern left! To use a common Somberby wiggle word, "it seems" the headline writer should have said:

    "GOP racism charge of 2009:
    Still alive and well

    Maine's Tea Party governor is sure that the president "hates white people." The party just keeps producing nut-jobs"


    You see, the headline could "seem" to imply the Governor of Maine made a racist remark as Bob reads it. It could also "seem" to imply the GOP was back using the racism charge against Obama that appeared in 2009. In fact, that is what Walsh's column is indeed about. The reason she doesn't explicity call LePage's remarks racist, as Bob notes, is because she explicity states he is quoted charging the President of the United States with being a racist, which Bob ignores.

    So, by the way, does Seelye, but she is employed by that agent of paralysis, the NYT. I believe Ms. Seelye once said bad things about Al Gore, but it is overlooked for the moment since she is of some small use to Mr. S. today. Of course, if Bob had merely remarked upon a bad headline, it wouldn't have opened up his favorite can'o'narratives.

    Our blogger also ignores that the existence of the comment is in dispute, and that it was reported by fearfully anonymous Republican legislators. We would not have noted the disappearnace of these facts had Mr. S. not chided the
    Sweetheart of the MSNBC Rodeo Clown Club for leaving out so many "pertinent" facts in her story about the tow truck driver.

    We'll stop about here. Going any further would lead to accusations we were trying to reshape opnions of Maureen Dowd or Keith Olbermann.

    Tomorrow: Does Bob keep waving the bloody flag over the neo-left race card because it's good for HIS ratings? We'll stop counting shark and bear attacks and start counting comments. We may even unleash of analysts on comparative attacks on female vs. male writers, and even the whole issue of whether Bob "seems" to abhor the misuse of racism charges as much or more than racism itself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Actually, the headline "GOP racism of 2009: Still Alive and Well, directly implies that racism is alive and well in the GOP.

      You're going to write even more blather than usual AND have a P.T. Barnum DNA gene splice in order to sell that as being far-fetched.

      Delete
    2. To fit the nits picked by Bob,( as opposed to feeding the charge that anyone who criticizes him is nitpicking,) I began by conceding the flawed headline. It could have been more accurate.

      I would suggest that the whole series of charges that Obama hates white people is, in and of itself, racist. Would you suggest otherwise? Please elaborate.

      You haven't come close to addressing the flaws I point out in Bob's analysis.

      PPP

      Delete
    3. What point have you made? You've conceded the point that was made by the blogger. The headline of that piece is a hyperbolic bit of work that does not accurately reflect Walsh's piece.

      In fact, that headline is meant to attract and to foment a certain partisan slathering mindset.

      You then go on to disagree not just with Somerby but with Walsh's restraint in not expressly calling the Guv a racist.

      No, I don't believe it's racist to call Pres. Obama a racist simply because he's a black man or simply because it is a baseless charge.

      Depending on the context, I think the accusation is either incorrect and ill-considered, or malicious, or race baiting, or all three.

      Delete
    4. Cecelia, please.

      The unfortunate headline doesn't "imply" what you says it implies. It directly states it.

      Please, before you throw around a word you love to throw around, at least know what it means.

      My complaint is that this is just another numbskull Walsh piece that probably got read two or three more times because of the link Somerby provided that really wasted the time it took for me to read it.

      And it leaves me with asking, "So what? Is this supposed to bolster a case of an entire press corps gone mad? Or is this just another case of Somerby going after the low-hanging fruit?"

      Delete
    5. No, just the hyperbolic headline writers, selective story tellers, and people who type things like "is this supposed to bolster a case of an entire press corps gone mad?"

      Delete
    6. Oh my, they're everywhere, they're everywhere!

      So one headline is proof of "hyperbolic headline writers." And so on and so on.

      You have learned from your master well, grasshopper.

      Delete
    7. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    8. Right, Anon10:52, that list is just so much more expansive than "an entire press corps gone mad".

      Delete
  9. Amusing. Trayvon Martin says Robert Zimmerman is a "white cracker". Bob's new found fans declare him a "racist". A "punk".
    A candidate for mayor in Winston-Salem calls a election worker a "nigger".
    According to Bob; this guy is just "stupid". And his own vote is the only vote he would get.
    Life without music. I can't cope.

    ReplyDelete
  10. bob somerby says,

    "For many years, such dumbness tended to stay underground as the nation’s discourse was regulated by a handful of major media figures, “wise men” like Walter and David. Now, the parameters of the discourse are defined by media figures like Rush and Sean—and Maureen, and Chris Matthews."

    >>> three of the four new media figures somerby picks are americans who have irish catholic heritage. walter and david did not.

    i do really believe somerby is sick in the head with hatred.

    im certainly not a fan of sean hannity and his masters ailes and murdcoh. nor am i a fan of mathews, but like hannity he is a hustler and will do the bidding of his the bosses. im agnostic on dowd bc i dont read her aside from the odd column referenced somewhere.

    but i recognize the second tool of the bigot when i see it: to regularly hold out for criticism various individual members of the group you wish to attack, way out of proportion to their representation within the group, in this case their numbers as journalists or bosses of media companies.

    somerby also uses the first tool, which is to name the group and regularly say that the group has this or that bad characteristic or multiple bad characteristics, or as somerby has effectively done, that 'we' are evil.

    the only 'group', as though 'we' are a coherent group, which he outright names is americans of irish catholic heritage.

    to see for yourself, google his new site with comment box since late 2011 for somewhat milder attacks or his older site for the strongest bigotry:

    site:http://dailyhowler.blogspot.com irish catholic

    site:http://dailyhowler.blogspot.com irish

    site:http://dailyhowler.blogspot.com mathews walsh

    site:site:http://dailyhowler.blogspot.com o'donnell

    site:http://dailyhowler.blogspot.com collins dowd

    etc etc


    the old site:

    site:http://www.dailyhowler.com irish catholic

    site:http://dailyhowler.blogspot.com irish

    etc etc

    ReplyDelete
  11. If you are going to party or some other work,which are important to you but you can't reached there for your vehicles failure at that time Give us a call or click to connect, (773) 234-2TOW. We guaranteed provide you to our tow truck service to help you to reach your destionation.tow truck service

    ReplyDelete
  12. Our tow truck service is the best in the business.just give us a call,and we comes to you always on time and make your day easier with our best and fast services

    ReplyDelete
  13. if you are going somewhere and suddenly the fuel of your car was finished,then just a call us our tow service tow your car to nearest fuel pump

    ReplyDelete