Supplemental: Rachel eliminates all Hispanics!


Trust her—it's for a good cause:
In this morning’s New York Times, Joe Nocera writes an actual column. In this column, he criticizes major aspects of Eric Holder's tenure.

In our view, Nocera has been a big disappointment since joining the op-ed page. He wastes enormous amounts of time writing about various aspects of college athletics, a rather marginal set of concerns as the nation disintegrates.

In today’s column, he wrote about a serious topic in his general field, the world of business and economics.

Last Thursday, Rachel Maddow also scanned, or pretended to scan, the legacy of Holder. Where Nocera offers a real critique, Rachel authored the latest in her growing number of piddle-rich tribal scams.

She started in a pitiful way which we’ll review below. Quickly, though, she offered a pleasing sponge bath to gullible liberal viewers.

It’s obvious what she’s peddling here. Can you spot the factual problem?
MADDOW (9/25/14): Eighty-two different people have had the job of attorney general over the course of the history of the United States. And 80 out of the 82 of them have been white men.

The one African American man we have ever had as attorney general of the United States is Eric Holder. The one woman we’ve ever had as attorney general of the United States is Janet Reno. And both of them were so viscerally hated and so vilified by the right, that it occasionally lost local coherence. It was pure emotion, to the point where it became almost a pathological, visceral thing.

The tenor of the vitriol against the Janet Reno over the years is perhaps best represented by a joke made by Senator John McCain in 1998. I will not read out loud Senator McCain’s joke but I—there we go. But I will point out that Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of the president and first lady of the United States, was a teenager at the time that John McCain made this joke about her.

This was John McCain at his classiest. But it’s also fairly representative in terms of the way conservatives and Republicans talked about and felt about Janet Reno. The right hated Janet Reno so badly that they just couldn’t see straight. She was the only woman who has ever been attorney general of the United States.

The only African American to ever be attorney general of the United States, today announced his retirement from the job. During his tenure in office, he too got Republicans so upset, so overexcited, so overwhelmed with their emotional hatred for him that things with Eric Holder, like with Janet Reno, they sometimes didn’t just get vituperative and over the top. They sometimes got weird and hard to follow.
Surely, we all can see the tribal gruel Rachel was ladling here.

This gruel is bad for the brain and bad for the soul. Rachel was telling us this:

The Other Tribe hates Holder because he’s black. Also, The Other Tribe hated Reno because she was a woman! End of discussion!

In this parable, “We” get cast as The Very Good People—the ones responsible for only two attorneys general who weren’t white men. By way of contrast, “They” get cast as the snarling haters. They hated Reno and Holder so badly that they couldn’t see straight!

There were a million problems with Maddow’s presentation this night. You can lose a lot of IQ points if you watch the tape all the way through.

That said, there was an obvious, groaning factual problem with the chunk we’ve already posted—her claim that 80 of the 82 attorneys general have been white men.

That was a very strange statement. In this way, Maddow cast Alberto Gonzalez as just another “white man.” Are we race-obsessed pseudo-liberals really willing to let ourselves do that?

According to one taxonomy, Gonzales actually could be listed as a “white man.” In this taxonomy, Hispanics are divided into “white Hispanics” and “black Hispanics”—and Gonzalez is clearly a man.

Much more often, though, Alberto Gonzalez was and is described as “the first Hispanic attorney general.” As such, he was listed in concert with Reno and Holder as “firsts,” not in opposition.

Needless to say, we liberals pretty much hated Gonzalez, although we typically said we did so for cause. Of course, conservatives said the same thing about Holder and Reno, not always without something resembling reasons.

(Does Maddow remember the day Reno managed to burn the Branch Davidian complex down? Reno made plenty of bumbles along the way. According to scuttlebutt, Clinton hated her too!)

Maddow made an extremely lazy, faux attempt to evaluate Holder’s tenure. Instead, she fed us a giant bowl of tribal gruel, in which “We” were cast as heroic trailblazers and “They” were cast as haters.

By the way, how did Maddow start this segment? In the dumbest possible way, while also singing the inevitable song of herself:
MADDOW (9/25/14): And thanks to you at home for joining us this hour.

All right, here is my personal Eric Holder moment. It was not a personal moment that I had with Eric Holder. He was not there, but it was about Eric Holder and it was personal and it was very, very clarifying.

It was 2010, I was in Alaska. We were up there to cover the Joe Miller/Lisa Murkowski U.S. Senate race that year. And up until the very last minutes of that trip to Alaska, it looked like I had gone there to talk to Lisa Murkowski and that’s it. Looked like I was not going to get an interview with the other guy, with Joe Miller himself.

But at one point on that trip, I did find myself on the streets of Anchorage in the middle of the next best thing to Joe Miller. I found myself in the middle of a crowd of Joe Miller’s Tea Party supporters. And they agreed to talk to me and this is how that went...
“I I I I I I I.” According to rumor, that’s the slogan on Maddow’s coat of arms.

After singing this “personal” song of herself, Maddow played tape of a four-year-old segment which was extremely dumb in real time—a segment in which a couple of inarticulate (but courteous) Miller supporters spouted off with their complaints about Holder.

Can we talk? The country is full of young, true-believing souls who may not always know exactly what they’re talking about. Maddow, a former Rhodes Scholar, has always taken way too much pleasure in lording it over this, the lesser breed.

Our tribe features imperfect people too. In segments like the one we’re discussing, Maddow keeps trying to add to their number:

All but two have been white men!

On this night, Maddow wiped the first Hispanic attorney general off the face of the earth. Instead of taking a serious look at Holder’s pros and cons, she played tape of a couple of kids in Alaska who weren’t especially sharp on a point they had raised. Then, she made us sit through that utterly pointless tape of Louie Gohmert using that regional expression again.

Holder was casting aspersions on his asparagus! Holder made Those People so mad, they would say things like that!

That’s what Those People are like, Maddow said, as tribal players always do. Go ahead—watch the tape!

Warning! Your IQ may drop several points if you watch the whole thing. In the process, you will see the nation’s Hispanics wiped off the face of the earth.

Trust her, though. It's for a good cause—making us liberals feel good!


  1. OMB (According to one Taxonomy OTB is Below Average Wattage)

    BOB seems to keep having trouble with the old US Census.

    "According to one taxonomy, Gonzales actually could be listed as a “white man.” In this taxonomy, Hispanics are divided into “white Hispanics” and “black Hispanics”—and Gonzalez is clearly a man."

    Too bad that one taxonomy BOB refers to isn't cited. That leaves BOB once again running afoul of the US Census, whose 77% earning figure for women BOB has had such trouble accepting.

    US Census Bureau "About Hispanic Origin"

    "Hispanic origin can be viewed as the heritage, nationality group, lineage, or country of birth of the person or the person’s parents or ancestors before their arrival in the United States. People who identify their origin as Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish may be any race."

    You see BOB and BOBfans, you are asked about ethnicity separately from race by your nosy old US Census takers. You are either Hispanic or not. You can be Hispanic and Black. You can be Hispanic and Asian. You can be Hispanic and White. You can also be Hispanic and Native American. You can be Hispanic and a mixture of two or many races. Because your Hispanic origin does not define your race.

    Noting Alberto Gonzales was another white man in the AG post does not wipe out Hispanics. It does mean he was not the first of his race nor his gender in the post unless he wants to follow Lizzy "Dances on Bankers" Warren and claim to be Native American. He very well may be more Native American genetically than white genetically given his Mexican familial heritage.

    Just as Rachel was right about the census statistic on the earnings gap between men and women, she is right on the racial "taxonomy" of Hispanics like Alberto Gonzales.

    We don't know which taxonomy BOB chose to use. Clearly it was the same one Daisy Hernandez was using when she said she learned how to talk to "white" men at the NY Times even though, based on the photographic evidence we have seen, she had one for a daddy.

    And one final note: Alberto, like Speedy, spells Gonzales with an "s" not a "z". BOB, bowing to conflicting orthography, used both.

    1. So all this gleeful talk from Maddow about how the Republicans are demographically doomed, which will save the world, save the country, and most importantly save the Democratic Party, is because ZKoD's sweetheart anticipates a relative increase in the Asian/Pacific Islander/Native American voting percentage relative to that of the Hispanic and non-Hispanic beneficiaries of white privilege. Glad we got that clarified.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. You've out done yourself in troll fatuousness, Z-Kod.

    4. So do you prefer that I say you're from the Galaxy Schizophrenia or the Galaxy Zchisophrenia?

      Elizabeth Warren's has a great-great-great grandmother who was Cherokee. That makes her at least 1/32 Cherokee. Is that enough? I know. Let's ask Bill John Baker, principal chief of the Cherokee Nation.

    5. Wow, ZKoD, quite a spin you put on that one. All that effort for such an unconvincing argument. Now that you have successfully split the hair, maybe you could go to work for the Obama administration, if you are not already employed by them.

    6. More fine, fine work from ZKoD or KZ. It must be most satisfying to think, boy, I really nailed BOB's hide to the wall today on that racial taxonomy stuff! How do I do it? Why do I do it? Why do I spend my time doing research to quibble with a couple of BOB's points? Oh, and by the way, some people are BOBfans and they're contemptible! And Bob has hardly any fans! And yet we trolls read him and comment obsessively, day after day! And Bob is old and a failure in life, according to people who spend a lot of time trolling him! Also, OMB and OTB! Or something!

    7. Autonomous,

      If you want to give all of his handles a shout out that should read:

      More fine, fine work from ZKoD or KZ or that one Anonymous or that other Anonymous along with the several Anonymouses around here who engage in back and forths with other not named mice.

    8. Due to the technical distinctions involved in defining "race" vs. "ethnicity," there is confusion among the general population about the designation of Hispanic identity. Currently, the United States Census Bureau defines five race categories:
      White or Caucasian
      Black or African American
      Native American or Alaska Native
      Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander

      According to census reports, of the above races the largest number of Hispanic or Latinos are of the White race, the second largest number come from the Native American/American Indian race who were the indigenous people of the Americas.

  2. If the only widely despise AGs were women and blacks, does it follow that John Mitchell and Ed Meese were black women?

    1. No, but I'd worry if you find black women are following you.

    2. And John Ashcroft was a media darling...

  3. Measured in $, Holder's biggest non-prosecution was the wealthy and well-connected John Corzine. Corzine was a former Democratic Governor of NJ. He was a big Democratic donor. He managed a investment fund, MF Global, that went belly up. As far as I can tell, he mis-appropriated over a billion dollars from his investors. Wiki says

    Shortly after [MF Global's insolvency], federal regulators began an investigation into hundreds of millions of dollars in missing customer funds.[153] Corzine resigned as CEO on November 4, 2011, after having retained the services of defense attorney Andrew J. Levander.[...MF Global's collapse was one of the ten biggest bankruptcies in U.S. history.[156]...

    Corzine was subpoenaed to appear before a House committee on December 8, 2011, to answer questions regarding missing money from MF Global client accounts.[157] On January 30, 2012, it was reported that officials investigating the case believed most of the money is unrecoverable.[158] In March 2012, Bloomberg reported that a memo produced by congressional investigators quotes an internal company e-mail as saying Corzine gave "direct instructions" to use customer money to cover the company's own shortfalls prior to bankruptcy. A Corzine spokesperson responded that Corzine "never gave any instruction to misuse customer funds and never intended anyone at MF Global to misuse customer funds"....about $1.6 billion had disappeared during the firm's bankruptcy."

    Although the Commodity Futures Trading Commission has filed civil charges against Corzine, the Justice Dept. never brought criminal charges for what appears to be the theft of $1.6 billion.

  4. Great headline Somerby! You've been reading those Salonistas so long eventually something had to "click."

  5. "He wastes enormous amounts of time writing about various aspects of college athletics, a rather marginal set of concerns as the nation disintegrates." Bob "Saving Commissioner Goodell" Somerby

    To quote another commenter today:

    hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha what a funny funny clever clever Bob hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha hahaha ha ha "

    We haven't laughed so hard since

    "In our view, that Oxford conference on procrastination was a genuine pip.

    It’s also something to be truly angry about"

    1. "we’ll likely return to that foppish event before the week is done."

  6. I am glad this post appeared. After the vicious continuos attacks on Latinas, and all the posts about ignoring only black children, I was beginning to think the Howler had it in for Hispanics.

    Thanks for standing up for the one Bush guy whose victimization by the leftist Salem witch hunters has almost been forgotten.

  7. "we liberals pretty much hated Gonzalez, although we typically said we did so for cause. Of course, conservatives said the same thing about Holder and Reno, not always without something resembling reasons."

    Right there is the entirety of what's wrong with the Howler. We were _correct_ about Gonzalez. They were _incorrect_ about Reno and Holder. These are not opinions. Politics does sometimes contain actual factual statements.

    Sure, there are various small shades in which we were wrong and they were right. But stating the existence of imperfection is the most useless contribution one can make to a debate. When we're right 90% and they're wrong 90%, that needs to be shouted over and above marginal concerns.

    1. Are you saying we were correct for hating Gonzales and they are incorrect for hating Holder and Reno except for various small shades?

    2. This doesn't excuse Maddow for pretending there have been no other minority AGs.

    3. And that doesn't excuse Bob for drawing a hideously false equivalence between the treatments of Gonzales, who was forced to resign in disgrace, and Holder, who wasn't. The equivalence is even more awful when one considers the nature of the discussion at hand: much of the criticism around Holder is overtly racial in nature, while Gonzales was attacked specifically for dishonestly and hackishly doing the job itself. Of course, to Bob, in his zombie quest to devour Maddow, bot sides are, or must be portrayed as being, equal in their irrational fervor; he tries to hide the absurdity of this claim with the phrase "not always without something resembling reasons" to describe the right's opposition to Holder. "Not always without something resembling reasons." You'd have thought even Crazy Bob would see the gracelessness of that sentence, and the absurdity of the reasoning that led to it, but he is pretty much back to spittle-flecked eruptions of Rage Against the Maddow. Nothing is too absurd for that.

    4. I don't think he drew such an equivalence.

  8. Gonzalez was, wow, such a disaster. Bob is right though in that he is not white.

    1. He is Hispanic or Latino. That is an underrepresented minority group in Americans politics.

    2. "Gonzalez was, wow, such a disaster. Bob is right though in that he is not white."

      A possible correlation?

  9. I am going to have to take Bob's side on this one. Gonzalez is brown, not white. Whoever wrote the script for Maddow forgot him.

    1. He is legitimately a person of color.

  10. Back on the Maddow sauce. And Bob had been doing so good. Pretty soon it will be the Rachel and Al show again, post after mind-numbing post.

  11. While I don't think the ATF covered themselves in glory in Waco, it is nothing short of absurd to say Reno burnt down the branch dividian ranch. The dividians burnt down that ranch.

    1. So everybody there obviously agreed that they should all die and burn it all down once the assault began?
      Obviously there is no argument that Reno pushed an unnecessary assault onto a fresh siege knowing there was no possibility of another recourse?

    2. Davidian, not Dividian.

    3. No, perhaps not everyone inside, but there was a coordinated effort by some to douse the structure from within with gasoline in order to self immolate.

    4. I seriously doubt "everybody" was involved in making decisions for that cult. There was a self-proclaimed Prophet, and those who believed that and followed accordingly. Korash (sic?) and his lieutenants were looking at charges ranging from the murder of a law enforcement officer, multiple counts, to child molestation. They obviously had no qualms with taking their followers out along with themselves.

  12. The described Holder coverage ties right in with Somerby's earlier post regarding corporate liberal media's unwillingness, or inability to discuss issues of class/economic inequality and the economic populism that used to be a staple of traditional liberal politics.

    In evaluating an AG from a liberal perspective I would think an examination of his/her response to the 2008 financial heist would be the front and center focus. Instead Maddow produces a self-satisfied, self-congratulatory, self-serving "discussion" of race. It's becomes a lazy, comfortable liberal fall back.

  13. I think Maddow is great but in this particular story it seems she brings up race and then makes a statement about it that isn't true.

  14. I can see how some Bobfans may think that Fredo is or appears to be not white but I think Maddow could give get a pass for calling him white, perhaps she was only looking at the legal briefs.

    1. However, the point is not whether or not Gonzales is white or not. The point is that Maddow had the opportunity to really look at what Holder did or did not do and wasted it trying to make a inappropriate point about race and politics. We need better work from our liberal (well paid) pundits or we should get better pundits.

  15. I think BOB and his fans are the ones who are being vainglorious.

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