Where the non-discourse stands: Is it possible that Ben Carson could be ever-so-tinily right?
During this year's primary campaign, Carson helped show the world how The Culture of Crazy has metastasized all through the discourse. To some extent, he kept it up on today's Morning Joe, the cable program where sanity, clarity and good faith go to die each day.
To watch this morning's segment with Carson, click here.
In our view, Carson's a nightmare manifestation of The Creeping Big Crazy. That said, we couldn't help sympathizing with his claim that the focus on Donald J. Trump's historical groping is keeping us from discussing the real issues in this campaign.
For the record, Donald J. Trump's historical groping is a real issue, at least of a type. That said, we have a hard time discussing such issues, except when such an issue gets tangled up in a presidential campaign.
Other than that, it doesn't much seem that we care.
Meanwhile, it's perfectly clear that we're incapable of discussing anything else, even in a presidential campaign. Our press corps wasn't even willing to discuss Trump's history of birtherism for the first fifteen months of this campaign. If the conduct doesn't involve sex or sexual aggression, our tiny small brains are no longer capable of focusing for more than a very few seconds.
Meanwhile, it's plain that we're going to discuss Donald J. Trump's historical groping for the rest of this campaign. No other topic will ever intrude. As a people, we're no longer capable of discussing anything else. Nothing could be more plain.
Let's be honest for once; sexual-themed misconduct/violence fires us up! (Check the exciting TV ad for The Girl on the Train. Dragged away by her very full head of hair! Accepted as delicious.) We know how to react to nothing else. By way of contrast, our cable entertainers will now be pseudo-discussing this topic all night, every night, for the next three-plus weeks.
Plus, they'll read the new polls.
In a small tiny way, we sympathized with Carson's complaint today. That said, we've been struck by how inept we are, even at discussing Donald J. Trump's historical groping.
All over CNN and MSNBC last night, we were told about the wonders of Michelle Obama's speech. No one seemed to have any idea how that speech will appear to those on The Other Side, not without valid reason.
With great passion, Michelle Obama was saying we can't allow a groper to get into the White House. What message will that send the kids, she asked. On its face, that looked like a sensible question.
Here's the problem. Over on The Other Side, everyone thinks that's what we're doing if we let the Clintons back in! What does Michelle Obama think about that? There's no chance she'll ever tell you. Over on The Other Side, people are noticing that.
Our team is skilled at reciting our current script: Bill Clinton isn't running for president. That's technically accurate, of course. But we don't seem to have any idea how this current state of affairs may look on The Other Side.
Please understand: those on The Other Side believe that Bill Clinton is an historical groper, and a rapist to boot. They've been told this for years and years. Now they're also being told that Hillary Clinton attacked the women her husband groped and raped.
Our team is too dumb to understand, or to care about, the way these claims have spread. We're too dumb to see the way the New York Times plays both ends against the middle with such delicious fare. We're too phony to ask ourselves if people like Broaddrick, Willey and Flowers could possibly be telling the truth. (For the record, Flowers has never claimed any misconduct by Bill Clinton. After all, her Bill was the only man she ever loved.)
In recent days, we've seen our corporate chew-toys go on CNN and MSNBC and pretend to "fact check" their claims. Our team is too dumb, and too uncaring, to see how poorly they do with this task. We're happy to yell at Donald J. Trump for his historical groping. We're too phony to confront, or care about, the way The Other Team feels about corresponding claims concerning William J. Clinton.
Personally, we regard Willey and Flowers as extremely non-credible accusers. But last week, the New York Times built Flowers' credibility up in an absurdly selective, 2900-word piece which appeared on page one. They even pimped Connie Hamzy!
Our weak-minded "liberal" boys didn't say a word. Dearest darlings, use your heads! It simply isn't done!
Just this morning, we saw Ari Melber pretending to explain and fact-check Willey's claims. He wasn't willing to tell his viewers that the Ken Starr gang formally reported that they considered charging her with perjury, she'd lied to them so much. He certainly didn't mention the time when Willey and Chris Matthews teamed up in a wildly irresponsible way to make a false accusation on the air, a provably false and crazy claim which almost got journalist [Name Withheld] killed.
(Pat Buchanan's brother, who was mentally ill, went to the journalist's house with a gun, where he was arrested. You see, Willey had been pretty sure that the journalist murdered her cat, as a warning. Matthews said the journalist's name for her on the air. As it turned out, the journalist had been in California on the night of the alleged murder. The grotesquely irresponsible Matthews is still a big corporate star.)
At any rate, the Starr gang formally said that they considered charging Willey with perjury? Our career players don't care enough to bother with information like that. They know that we'll accept whatever porridge they serve us. It's all about killing time for the hour. No one actually cares.
The Other Side has been told for years that Bill Clinton is a rapist. They've now been told, again and again, that Hillary Clinton savaged her husband's accusers.
We're too lazy to explain why those claims are wrong; to faux to wonder if such claims are right; too haughty to talk to People Like Them, who now believe these claims, especially in the face of our endless silence. In short, we're very unimpressive people. Despite the mountains of misinformation they've swallowed, people in The Other Tribe can sometimes spot this fact.
On Wednesday morning, the New York Times ran a front-page report about Trump supporters' view of the groping/assault charges. We sympathized with the people who made these remarks:
GABRIEL (10/12/16): There were equal numbers of women and men at the rally, and many dismissed as insignificant Mr. Trump’s private comments, caught on the 2005 recording, about being able to grab women by their genitals because he was a “star.”We're sorry, but there is a double standard at work. There was a double standard at work in Michelle Obama's speech, where she begged voters to keep Trump out of the White House without ever saying how she regards the claims about Bill Clinton.
“When all this baloney came out about Trump, I understand it’s a scandal,” said Brenda Stchur, 56, a Democrat from Hudson, Pa., who supports Mr. Trump. “But John F. Kennedy wasn’t innocent, either, and everyone loves John F. Kennedy.”
Marilyn Sevigny, a retiree from Lake Ariel, Pa., said that “as a woman, I don’t like what he said, I’m not defending it.” But she added that there was a double standard at work. “If a Democrat says it, it’s just words. If a Republican says it, it’s an assault,” she said.
And yes, there's long been a double standard at work concerning President Kennedy. According to her well-written memoir, Mimi Alford really was a White House intern when she was sexually mugged by Kennedy after being procured by an aide. (She was 19, and sexually inexperienced.)
In large part because she isn't angry or a hater, Alford's book is extremely affecting. No one really seems to think it isn't true. Within the crackpot corporate realm which our team accepts from MSNBC, Chris Matthews has always adored his JFK, but spent years savaging the Clintons and Gore while fawning to Bill Clinton's more lunatic accusers.
He then pulled a full 180 when the bosses told him to do so. We're so pitifully undergrown that he is allowed to play this way without a question asked. He's always loved his JFK, thought Bill Clinton was vile.
Our team is untidy, undergrown, basically mush-headed, foul. The Others think we're very bad people. Although they've been disinformed about almost everything, on that point it isn't clear that The Others are wrong.
Our team is happy loathing The Others. We aren't prepared to go where they live and make an attempt to explain. They might insist on talking back! And as HRC made clear that night, we regard them as irredeemable, foul.
Do you think Bill Clinton did all those things? Here within our glorious tribe, why the heck does nobody ask? Isn't it abundantly clear that we don't actually care?
Tomorrow: Bill Clinton among the wretched of the earth