GONNA STUDY WAR LOTS MORE: Dr. King tries a little tenderness!


Part 4—Joan Walsh pours it on: Last night, viewers of Hardball got themselves played again.

Joan Walsh was asked about Ted Cruz’s chances of reaching the White House. By her own admission, she was sorry to say what she said:
WALSH (10/10/13): I don’t think he will get the nomination—he could, because there is that hatred afoot in our country. I’m sorry to say it, but there is. And there is that hatred of government. And there are people—people really, far-right people believe that they were pushed, they were sold a bill of goods, a moderate in John McCain, a moderate in Mitt Romney, and that this time is their time. 2016, it is their turn.

And he’s popular in Iowa. He really—I don’t think this is going to happen, but it could happen, because he really is giving voice to a very nihilistic, very angry, anti-government, out-of-touch sector of our society. And we don’t know how destructive they are or how many of them there are, but they are the true believers. And he could go farther than we think just on that.
Joan was sorry to say it. But as it turns out, there are a lot of nihilistic haters out there. We don’t know how destructive they are.

It hurt Joan Walsh to say those things, but she was determined to serve. A few minute later, she forced herself to make a few more comments:
WALSH: But you know, you asked what these people believe in. I wanted to be mean and say “secession.” I mean, there are these people who have been crusading against the government going that far back.
She wanted to be mean and say those things. But she made herself stop!

Moments later, though, she blurted. According to Walsh, “these people” are nihilistic haters who long for secession. Their attitudes go that far back! All the way back to the days when a war was fought in support of enslavement of people!

Last week, Walsh offered a further insight—when those people look at Barack Obama, thoughts of miscegenation pop into their heads! Walsh knows all, and is willing to tell, concerning those very bad people!

Over on Fox, those nihilistic haters were getting misled once again (see our next post). But how fitting! We liberals were getting conned by Walsh, on our own cable channel!

On Hardball, we liberals were being trained in the hate that dare not speak its own name. It's the hate that says the other guy hates, the hate that says it hates to hate. The hate that says it bit its tongue a moment ago, even as it blurts now.

We’ll assume that Walsh may have been a decent person at some point in the past. Perhaps she could reconnect with that person by revisiting an old book.

This morning, we took that book to the bagel joint, along with Amanda Ripley’s embellishment-driven text. We flipped the pages of Stride Toward Freedom, the 1958 book in which Dr. King, then 29, explained the process by which he became the last century’s great moral giant.

And its greatest achiever.

Once again, we’ll strongly recommend Dr. King’s book. In its very first paragraph (see below), we think it will take you into a surprising and different world.

For today, let’s skip ahead to Chapter 6, Pilgrimage to Nonviolence.

Dr. King grew up in a world which was drenched with actual hate. This is the start of the chapter in which he explains his belief in the practiced of nonviolence:
DR. KING (page 90): Often the question has arisen concerning my own intellectual pilgrimage to nonviolence. In order to get at this question it is necessary to go back to my early teens in Atlanta. I had grown up abhorring not only segregation but also the oppressive and barbarous acts that grew out of it. I had passed spots where Negroes had been savagely lynched, and had watched the Ku Klux Klan on its rides at night. I had seen police brutality with my own eyes, and watched Negroes receive the most tragic injustice in the courts. All of these things had done something to my growing personality. I had come perilously close to resenting all white people.

I had also learned that the inseparable twin of racial injustice was economic injustice. Although I came from a home of economic security and relative comfort, I could never get out of my mind the economic insecurity of many of my playmates and the tragic poverty of those living around me. During my late teens I worked two summers, against my father’s wishes—he never wanted my brother and me to work around white people because of the oppressive conditions—in a plant that hired both Negroes and whites. Here I saw economic injustice first-hand, and realized that the poor white was exploited just as much as the Negro. Through these early experiences I grew up deeply conscious of the varieties of injustice in our society.
Dr. King says he “grew up deeply conscious of the varieties of injustice in our society” (our emphasis). Even as a teenager, Dr. King understood a basic fact—a fact Walsh is happy to throw down the stairs in the process of pleasing us liberals.

Omigod! Even as a teenager, Dr. King understood that some of “those people” are being misled and misused by other groups of “those people.” And sure enough! Last night, we saw some of those nihilistic haters being misled by Greta Van Susteren, even as liberals were getting told to study war by Walsh.

Whatever! As the chapter proceeds, Dr. King explains his “intellectual quest for a method to eliminate social evil.” It starts when he is at Morehouse College, from which he graduated at age 19.

“During my student days at Morehouse I read Thoreau’s Essay on Civil Disobedience for the first time,” Dr. King writes. “Fascinated by the idea of refusing to cooperate with an evil system, I was so deeply moved that I reread the work several times. This was my first intellectual contact with the theory of nonviolent resistance.”

Dr. King describes his subsequent reading of a string of major philosophers as he continued his search. Eventually, he is led to the writing of Gandhi. In this passage, we recall a forgotten fact—the actual Dr. King, who wasn’t a clip from a Pepsi commercial, came from a very unusual spiritual and intellectual world:
DR. KING (page 96): Like most people, I had heard of Gandhi, but I had never studied him seriously. As I read I became deeply fascinated by his campaigns of non-violent resistance. I was particularly moved by his Salt March to the sea and by his numerous fasts. The whole concept of “Satyagraha” was profoundly significant to me. (Satya is truth which equals love, and agraha is force. “Satyagraha,” therefore, means truth-force or love force.) As I delved deeper into the philosophy of Gandhi my skepticism concerning the power of love gradually diminished, and I came to see for the first time its potency in the area of social reform. Prior to reading Gandhi, I had about concluded that the ethics of Jesus were only effective in individual relationship. The “turn the other cheek” philosophy and the “love your enemies” philosophy were only valid, I felt, when individuals were in conflict with other individuals; when racial groups and nations were in conflict a more realistic approach seemed necessary. But after reading Gandhi, I saw how utterly mistaken I was.

Gandhi was probably the first person in history to lift the love ethic of Jesus above mere interaction between individuals to a powerful and effective social force on a large scale. Love for Gandhi was a potent instrument for social and collective transformation. It was in this Gandhian emphasis on love and non-violence that I discovered the method for social reform that I had been seeking.
Dr. King wouldn’t cut the mustard as a Hardball guest! Eventually, he explained the part of nonviolent resistance that might help Walsh reintegrate with the person she may have been long ago:
DR. KING (page 105): A fifth point concerning nonviolent resistance is that it avoids not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. The nonviolent resister not only refuses to shoot his opponent but he also refuses to hate him. At the center of nonviolence stands the principle of love. The nonviolent resister would contend that in the struggle for human dignity, the oppressed people of the world must not succumb to the temptation of becoming bitter or indulging in hate campaigns. To retaliate in kind would do nothing but intensify the existence of hate in the universe. Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. This can only be done by projecting the ethic of love to the center of our lives.
We know—it’s embarrassing to hear someone speaking like that. We avert our gaze as a courtesy to this naïve, silly person.

In this case, though, the silly person is the last century’s greatest achiever. In opposition to this approach stands the hater Wash, describing the crazy thoughts of tens of millions of people she can’t name.

They’re nihilistic haters who just can’t stop thinking about miscegenation! Somehow Walsh thinks she knows all these things. Plainly, though, she knows how to hate, the posture Dr. King rejected.

As he continues, Dr. King explains what kind of love he’s discussing. (It’s agape, not eros or philia!) There’s one last point in his rumination that strikes us as key at the present time.

We’ll post a fairly large chunk. But the highlighted point speaks to the person Walsh has ceased to be:
DR. KING (page 105): Another basic point about agape is that it springs from the need of the other person—his need for belonging to the best of the human family. The Samaritan who helped the Jew in the Jericho Road was "good" because he responded to the human need that he was presented with. God's love is eternal and fails not because man needs his love. St. Paul assures us that the loving act of redemption was done “while we were yet sinners”—that is, at the point of our greatest need for love. Since the white man’s personality is greatly distorted by segregation, and his soul is greatly scarred, he needs the love of the Negro. The Negro must love the white man, because the white man needs his love to remove his tensions, insecurities and fears.

Agape is not a weak, passive love. It is love in action. Agape is love seeking to preserve and create community. It is insistence on community even when one seeks to break it. Agape is a willingness to sacrifice in the interest of mutuality. Agape is a willingness to go to any length to restore community. It doesn't stop at the first mile, but goes the second mile to restore community. The cross is the eternal expression of the length to which God will go in order to restore broken community.
As you can see, a great deal in that first paragraph was rather unusual, especially given the times. But for today, we will recommend Dr. King’s “willingness to go to any length to restore community.”

How might an adept of this greatest achiever perceive the current scene? Last night, we pictured people in a million homes getting misled by Van Susteren, for the ten millionth time. The previous night, we were watching Fox as those same people got misled by Sean Hannity.

They’ve been misled ten million times; the haters will quickly say this proves how amazingly dumb they are. But then, how dumb does a liberal have to be to read the crap that appeared in Salon last week, penned by Walsh and O’Hehir?

News flash: We humans are often rather dumb, especially in thrall to the tribe.

Like Mr. T, Dr. King knew how to pity the fools! He tried a little tenderness, just like Gandhi said.

Even as a teenager, he saw that some of the people who behaved badly were getting conned by more powerful people. He felt sorry for those people too. He fought against hating, especially against hating groups.

The haters take a different approach. They can’t wait to call those people the ugliest names they can muster. They look for the ugliest possible way to perceive and describe the very bad folk they oppose.

They’ll even invent absurd ideas about what’s in everyone’s minds! As Walsh explained last week, "this crazed minority see in the face of Barack Obama everything they’ve been taught to fear for 50 years. Start with miscegenation...They can’t get their minds off the circumstances of his conception and birth.”

Actually, yes. That actually is what Walsh crazily wrote.

Dr. King was our greatest achiever. Walsh is a climber who kissed Matthews’ ass when Matthews was at his most destructive.

Today, she serves as a walkin’ boss on Hardball and at the new Salon. As a teenager, Dr. King saw the bosses misleading the rubes. We see the same thing today.

Do you believe Walsh was “sorry to say it” last night? Or were slightly more gullible Hardball viewers perhaps getting conned once again? Getting shown how to study war?

How the book begins: In our view, Stride Toward Freedom’s opening paragraph takes us to a different world:

“On a Saturday afternoon in January 1954, I set out to drive from Atlanta, Georgia to Montgomery, Alabama. It was a clear, wintry day. The Metropolitan Opera was on the radio with a performance of one of my favorite operas—Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor. So with the beauty of the countryside, the inspiration of Donizetti’s inimitable music, and the splendor of the skies, the usual monotony that accompanies a relatively long drive—especially when one is alone—was dispelled in pleasant diversions.”

Dr. King turned 25 that month. He was going to Montgomery to interview for his first job as a minister.

Did you know that Dr. King had favorite operas? There are many things about Dr. King the “liberal” world has forgotten and abandoned as we try, in various ways, to mimic those we hate.


  1. As Walsh explained last week, "this crazed minority see in the face of Barack Obama everything they’ve been taught to fear for 50 years. Start with miscegenation...They can’t get their minds off the circumstances of his conception and birth.”

    Batshit insanity.

  2. Liberals claim to want minorities to succeed, but they don't. Instead of taking pride in how the United States allowed this Hispanic to succeed and to break ethnic barriers, liberals pretend he's an evil fool.

    The most striking thing about Ted Cruz is his brilliance and his success as a lawyer. According to wiki

    Cruz graduated cum laude from Princeton University with a Bachelor of Arts from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs in 1992. While at Princeton, he won the top speaker award at both the 1992 U.S. National Debating Championship and the 1992 North American Debating Championship.[27] In 1992, he was named U.S. National Speaker of the Year and Team of the Year (with his debate partner, David Panton).[27] Cruz was also a semi-finalist at the 1995 World Universities Debating Championship.[28]

    Cruz attended Harvard Law School, graduating magna cum laude in 1995 with a Juris Doctor.[1][30] While at Harvard Law, Cruz was a primary editor of the Harvard Law Review, and executive editor of the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, and a founding editor of the Harvard Latino Law Review.[4] Referring to Cruz's time as a student at Harvard Law, Professor Alan Dershowitz said, "Cruz was off-the-charts brilliant.

    Cruz served as a law clerk to J. Michael Luttig of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in 1995[3][36] and William Rehnquist, Chief Justice of the United States in 1996.[1] Cruz was the first Hispanic ever to clerk for a Chief Justice of the United States.[38]

    He was the first Hispanic Solicitor General in Texas,[3] the youngest Solicitor General in the United States, and the Solicitor General with the longest tenure in Texas history. He was also the first Hispanic to be elected U.S. Senator from Texas.

    Cruz was a partner at the law firm Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, where he led the firm’s U.S. Supreme Court and national appellate litigation practice.

    1. And your point is what?

      If Ted Cruz is, in fact, so "brilliant," then why is he a conservative Republican?

      If he's so "brilliant," then why is he pursuing a scorched-earth policy that harms his party and its reputation (not to mention his own)?

      If he's so "brilliant," then why does Cruz continue to make absolutely asinine and easily disprovable statements about Obama Care?

      If Cruz is so "brilliant," then why does he consistently turn his back on the core values embedded in the Constitution?

      Ted Cruz may be Hispanic. And he may be a U.S. Senator. He may have a Harvard law degree. And he may be book smart. He may be flashily successful.

      But is he "really much more intelligent than most people?"

      It certainly doesn't look like it.

    2. It's tempting to assume that people who disagree with you are stupider or more ignorant than you are. Not so. There are knowledgeable people and jerks on all sides.

      E.g., Rush Limbaugh listeners have a very high level of knowledge -- higher than patron of the New Yorker, NPR, the Daily Show, CNN, daily newspapers, etc. It's striking that Libaugh listeners rate 48, almost the highest of an listed group, while NSNBC watchers rate 21, nearly the lowest.

      See http://sayanythingblog.com/entry/rush_limbaugh_listeners_are_smarter_than_average/

    3. Ted Cruz is "brilliant", except for, you know, the whole Math, Science, and Economics parts.

      Jesus Christ Almighty, DavidinCal, are you that gullible?

    4. Bob Somerby has a fixation with how terrible it is to regard your opponent as a "hater." Its just as bad to think your opponent's beliefs are based on ignorance or that that your opponent is being conned. Martin Luther King had the same contempt for his opponents. The statement that " the white man's soul is deeply scarred" and that he "needs the love of the negro" are contemptuous of the opponent. He's making no effort to know or even acknowledge the opponent as a thinking human being.

      The proof is in the pudding: the civil rights era was chock full of murderous black riots, not love from the negro. The "white man" moved away from the negro, as far away as possible, to the suburbs where segregation could be practiced as it was in the North. So much for needing the love of the negro.

      Joan Walsh isn't comparable to Rush Limbaugh at all. She's very sanctimonious, like liberals I meet on message boards like this one. She says a bunch of platitudes and looks down her nose at other people. If she's contradicted, I'm sure she'll get nasty and then go off in a huff like she's highly offended.

      Rush Limbaugh uses a lot of humor; Walsh has none (I haven't seen her in a while but can remember none).

  3. There's no question but that the "birthers" are mostly conservative and Republican.

    There's also little question but that FOX sells fear. Al lot. See, for example:


    Congressional scholars Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein pointed the finger of blame for gridlock in government directly at conservative Republicans in Congress. They wrote:

    “We have been studying Washington politics and Congress for more than 40 years, and never have we seen them this dysfunctional...we have no choice but to acknowledge that the core of the problem lies with the Republican Party. The GOP has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition...the center of gravity in the Republican Party has shifted sharply to the right.”

    That's a harsh indictment, from two of the most respected Congressional scholars in the country. Norman Ornstein just add this, in a recent interview:

    "The bottom line was that it’s the House party and the Southern party, which are the dominant forces out there; they are the ones driving the dialogue. And the fact is that in the House party you’ve got people who come from homogeneous echo chambers in their districts and are concerned, most of them, only about primaries. The Southern party has a very different worldview from the rest of the country, and is not moved by broader national opinion. It is much more overtly hostile to Obama, and I suspect that race is a part of it."

    Is it quite as bad as Joan Walsh puts it? Probably not. But it is bad, and racist.

    1. The "liberal" news media drummed up the birther issue. How many times did that Russian dentist lady Orly Taitz get on liberal hosted TV shows?

      Its nothing new. Phil Donahue and other liberals used to have David Duke on all the time.

    2. Yepper Lionel. That Russian lady got on TV almost as much as that liberal Trump guy. Real conservatives weren't concerned about that born in Africa business. It was the "Get Whitey"speech of Obama's wife and the racist theology of his minister that bothered real conservatives. That and the madrassa.

    3. Trump is being shoved down your gullet by the same people who bring you Rachel Maddow et al: NBC.

      Michelle Obama rubs some people the wrong way; Nancy Reagan rubbed some people the wrong way. Did you know that there were insinuations in the media that Mamie Eisenhower was an alcoholic?

      Rev. Wright is a lunatic. I remember his performance at the National Press Club. He's full of himself.

  4. Many conservative Republicans claim to be "Christians." This seems to be especially true in the South. Yet, too often these "Christians" fail to grasp the core teachings of The Gospels.

    Consider the following, from the Supreme Court decision in Loving v. Virginia (1967), a case that centered on Virginia's miscegenation law (the Racial Integrity Act). The Court noted that "the trial judge suspended the sentence for a period of 25 years on the condition that the Lovings leave the State and not return to Virginia together for 25 years. He stated in an opinion that:

    Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And, but for the interference with his arrangement, there would be no cause for such marriage. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix."

    For too many conservatives, this is still "truth."

    1. Anon, you're blaming today's Republicans for a racist judicial decision made almost 50 years ago by a probable Democrat.

      (Judge Leon M. Bazile was almost surely a Democrat. Southern politics were dominated by Dems back when he entered politics. )

    2. I'm not. I'm going back to this month to show their lack of Math, Science, and Economic understanding.
      They're dumber than a bag of hammers (and WAY less useful), and anyone who follows their mental meanderings is a dope.

    3. If today's Democratic policies worked, Robert, you could extol your party based on agreement with its policies. But, the Affordable Care Act is screwed up, the economy is not doing that well, there are unsustainable, ongoing deficits, etc., Democrats can't sell themselves in a positive way. So, they resort to demonizing -- Republicans are racists; they're dumb; they're dopes, they don't care about people, they want the water and air to be polluted, etc.

    4. My party?
      You're back to batting 1.000, DavidinCal. If being wrong is your aim.

      Also, who said Republicans don't care about people? They certainly care about corporations, and those are people, per the SCOTUS. Of course, according to SCOTUS bribery is protected by the First Amendment (Free Speech).

      As for the ACA being screwed up, no kidding. Single-payer is the obvious way to go.

      Finally, Republicans are dopes (ask them to explain Math, Science or Economics, then try to tell me they aren't dopes). Even someone as dishonest (or gullible, I don't know you) as you can make that argument.


    5. Freeman Dyson, who many consider to be the “most brilliant physicist on the planet” takes the Republican position on global warming. That is, he is a skeptic.

      See http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/04/05/freeman-dyson-speaks-out-about-climate-science-and-fudge/

  5. Being nice doesn't work on the power players. But _nothing_ works on their sheep, so we might as well be nice to them. Punch up, not down or sideways. Attacking the rubes gains nothing. Attacking the oligarchy is mandatory. (We tried not attacking the oligarchy in the 1990s. It didn't work.)

  6. "Dr. King wouldn’t cut the mustard as a Hardball guest!"
    Best sentence I've read in a long, long time.

    1. The only thing a Hardball guest gets is cut off.

    2. The only way MLK would make it onto television in this day and age is if his guest spot was filmed at a coliseum, and included a pride of lions.

    3. Not to often we agree, CM, but you nailed that one.


    4. If Martin Luther King was currently a figure on the national scene he would not be lionized as he was in the 60's as there are more outlets for critical voices and less control by the mainstream elite media. And all the girlfiends would be going on talk shows.

  7. MLK, Jr. was so "lionized" in the 60s, they shot him dead.
    Feel the love.


    1. Berto, one person shot Dr. King, not the entire 60's generation. Most of us in the 1960's lionized him.

  8. "Dr. King was our greatest achiever. Walsh is a climber who kissed Matthews’ ass when Matthews was at his most destructive."

    Dr. King was remarkable. The acheivements resulting from the social and political movement he helped lead would probably not have been credited to him to the degree they have had he not been murdered.

    And Joan Walsh may have kissed Matthews but when he was at his "most" destructive. I'm just not buying that, at his zenith, Chris destroyed very much.