Thursday, September 22, 2005

Taranto, Predictably, Targets Post-Katrina Reaction of "Angry Left." But Republicans Were Critical, Too

OpinionJournal.com editor James Taranto has this shtick.

He talks about the "angry left." Rarely is there a Taranto column, or a Taranto radio or television appearance, in which he doesn't slip in that phrase several times.

In Taranto's world, the "angry left" is not just Michael Moore, Daily Kos or Randi Rhodes. It's anyone who criticizes President Bush or his policies. No matter how legitimate the claim, if someone on the left side of the aisle dares dissent, they're "angry."

It's a variation of an empty conservative spin line, offered over and over, that liberals and Democrats "hate Bush." When you start at that point, a conservative pundit doesn't have to go far before making the claim that liberals and Democrats are rooting for Bush to fail, which in turn implies that liberals and Democrats hate America.

You might remember during the presidential election campaign that some right-wing pundits were saying that liberals and Democrats were rooting for the insurgents to keep pushing up the U.S. death toll in Iraq. Some right-wing pundits tossed red meat to conservatives, saying that liberals and Democrats cheered when former President Reagan died.

It's insulting when right-wing pundits lie like this, making gross stereotypical myths solely for the purpose of connecting with -- for lack of a better term -- the "angry right." But let's not kid ourselves -- this empty conservative spin resonates with voters. Go take a look around the right-wing blogosphere, and you'll find a seemingly endless number of posts repeating these vulgarities about the "angry left."

It also gets these pundits more radio and television gigs. It increases the number of newspapers reading their columns. Screw the truth.

***

Taranto was at it again on the Sept. 16 edition of Fox News Channel's Hannity & Colmes. (Rich Lowry was sitting in for Sean Hannity):

LOWRY: What's been amazing about this debate over the last couple of weeks is conservatives used to joke, you know, Bush haters are going to blame Bush for the weather, and the next thing, you know, and they've actually been doing it the last couple of weeks. And it's not as though conservatives, you know, jumped all over Bill Clinton and blamed him for the deaths in the heat wave in Chicago [in 1995]. It just seems as though this president is in a uniquely poisonous, partisan environment.

TARANTO: Well, I don't know about uniquely. I mean, the -- there was a pretty poisonous partisan environment with FDR was president, when Lincoln was president. You know, we go through these periods in American history. I will say I think that the behavior of the angry left when the hurricane first struck, and they saw an opportunity to beat up on Bush, it was really shameful. I mean, to some people in this country, Hurricane Katrina was this month's Cindy Sheehan, it was this month's excuse to pound President Bush. I argued --

But, as JABBS readers know, it's empty conservative spin to suggest that the "angry left" alone was upset with the federal response to Hurricane Katrina.

There was no shortage of Republicans criticizing the response. And, as we all know, President Bush himself offered a mea culpa, and vowed to investigate his administration's shortcomings in handling the crisis.

But those are actual facts. And for people like Taranto, it's so much easier to just offer empty conservative spin. Toss some red meat to a conservative audience, and hope it resonates the next time that audience heads to the polls. Make some gross stereotypical claims, and hope it lands a few more radio and television gigs.

14 Comments:

Anonymous noonwitch said...

Anger about Katrina is not just coming from the left. There are moderates who are angry about the FEMA response (or lack thereof) and conservatives, too. If the anger was only from the left, Bush would not have asked for Brownie's resignation.

11:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course we're ANGRY...and we've had reason to be since the SCOTUS decided the election of 2000...also sad, concerned, depressed, frustrated and more. It's not about HATING BUSH (sure some do - limited imaginations) or crying when Reagan died (I didn't cry when he died for Oh, so many reasons not the least of which was having a mother who suffered from the same disease)...but I'm telling you I'll have to restrain myself when George gets his fervent wish to come to JUDGEMENT DAY! It can't happen too soon and will solve nothing because he's just been the buffoon they put in the oval office. When I was young I thought if Stalin died all would be well in Russia...I've grown up since then. This nest of hornets will be much harder to eliminate!

2:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Right appears to have forgotten how angry it was during Clinton's impeachment boondoggle.
But the Left at least has a good reason to be angry as the issues are now more significant than an out-of-wedlock blow job: Iraq, hurricane response, a huge surplus transformed into a monsterous deficit, etc.
History will not look back approvingly on the Bush apologist movement, consisting mostly of these baseless "angry left" claims in the same way that history now belittles the Republican impeachment movement against Clinton.

5:18 PM  
Blogger CSC5502D said...

Yes, and as we all know, liberal commentators never call us Nazis, fascists, brownshirts, KKK members, racists etc. My personal favorite is the "angry white men" label (because I'm not white), but I also appreciate "closed-minded", "neanderthal", "caveman", "gun nut", "homophobe", etc. etc. ETC.

And of course people like Nancy Pelosi never refer to the "extreme right wing" or the "radical right wing" right?

And when was the last time a news reporter or print story referred to "left-wing" anything when doing a story about Democrats? A simple Lexis search will show you how often "right-wing" and "far right" are used referring to us.

As far as Republicans criticzing the response, it was in FAR lower proportion to liberals doing it, and you know it. Not to mention the Democrats using it as fundraisers on their mailings and email blasts.

The only real spin is your spin.

10:43 AM  
Blogger Snoop said...

“if someone on the left side of the aisle dares dissent, they're "angry."

(well fellas lets see, I shall let you libs make my point for me)

“I can barely tolerate these bloggers who shoot arrows at the commentary, without providing any examples, specific or otherwise, Why do you feel the commentary is so "off course," or "utterly stupid?"
Don't talk through your butthole. Provide some examples, which is less than much of the commentary you are apparantely bitching about has done. It seems to me you are more offended that some one could be so justifiably outraged at what the Bush Administration has "accomplished."

“But the Left at least has a good reason to be angry as the issues are now more significant than an out-of-wedlock blow job: Iraq, hurricane response, a huge surplus transformed into a monsterous deficit, etc.”

“Of course we're ANGRY...and we've had reason to be since the SCOTUS decided the election of 2000...BLA BLA BLA”

“Cronyism rules!”

“It's all one big damn patronage system. If you want to work at a high cabinet level position for this Administration all you have to do is be married to...BLA BLA BLA”

“What does capturing Bin Laden mean to Bush Administration?
Not a goddamn thing. They NEVER intended to capture him, bin Laden's family is an important part of the Bush family crime cartel......BLA BLA BLA”

“Republicans now all fall into one or more of three categories: Greedy, Racist, and/or Religiously Insane.....BLA BLA BLA”

“bin Laden means nothing to the corrupt Bush administration”

“Just another one of the Bush gross incompetencies and failures that occurs right before our eyes...BLA BLA BLA”

“Exactly how low can they go? What scum.”

AH HELL I HAVE TO STOP TOO MUCH ANGER! BUT FINALLY MR. ANONYMOUS (WHAT IS YOUR REAL NAME?)

“While the comment is in, at best, questionble taste, remmber that the prevailing wisdom in the blogosphere was that baause of Bush's incompetence thouads were dead. Because f a lack of ladership on his part, thousands of bodies were floating in the streets of New Orleans.

Thousands dead huh genius?

10:49 AM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Certainly it's reasonable to base a claim on anonymous posters to a little-read liberal blog, right Snoop? That's a fair criticism.

We're not talking about the average person venting in their underwear. We're talking about people who are paid to write columns, paid to offer their opinions on the television and radio. Let's try to draw that distinction.

Who cares if Mr. Nobody from Nowheresville calls Bush a Nazi? Or for that matter, who cares if Mr. Nobody is a Nazi?

That's not apples to apples to when Rush Limbaugh, with his millions of listeners, calls feminists "feminazis" or when he says that Osama Bin Laden is rooting for John Kerry.

It's one thing when Mr. Nobody says that stem cell research is bad. It's another thing when James Dobson goes onto Fox News, with, say, 2 million viewers, and compares embryonic stem cell researchers to Nazi scientists.

It's one thing when Mr. Nobody says that gays are sinners. It's another when Michael Savage, on his old MSNBC show, with, say, 500,000 viewers, tells a gay caller to get AIDS and die.

You see the difference, snoop? CSC5502D?

Also, CSC, can you cite an example where a legitimate pundit or columnist -- not an anonymous blogger -- referred to ALL Republicans as closed-minded", "neanderthal", "caveman", "gun nut", "homophobe", etc. etc. ETC.?

Again, if James Taranto or another conservative wants to pick on a particular liberal or Democrat for a particular view, that's reasonable. But what JABBS is talking about is the baseless stereotype of all liberals and Democrats as ANYTHING.

And sorry, CSC, when the president himself says that the federal response was ineffective, I think all bets are off for saying it's a partisan issue. Only the truest of believers are still defending Michael Brown or Michael Chertoff for the immediate federal response to Katrina.

Bush himself, just yesterday, said that the federal response to Rita would be far better -- far more proactive, far more preparation in advance, etc., because of the reality of the federal response to Katrina.

2:26 PM  
Blogger Snoop said...

“We're not talking about the average person venting in their underwear. We're talking about people who are paid to write columns, paid to offer their opinions on the television and radio. Let's try to draw that distinction.”

Rob, Rob, Rob, Dude you are trying to convince me that the examples I sited are WAY OFF BASE?
I don’t discount those who either have blogs or post on blogs.
What does the average consistent audience of a blog? 80-150 or so visitors? And they are not visiting just one blog. I myself if I have the time during the day read or at least scan 20-30. What percentage of those have their own blogs 60%?
Word spreads, this is why I said before I see trends, phrases the rants are recycled, and the clichés are recycled.
Most bloggers or the posters don’t provide anything new of substance.
The goal is the repeat something so many times that is sticks in the consciousness of the general public. If you happen to agree with the rant you will recycle that same tired shit on as many blogs as you can (like this anonymous prick here does)

I’m sorry for repeating myself but I must, dude you must read very few liberal blogs and the comments. You can’t with a straight face tell me that those comments are not typical of the average liberal. Rob I see it WAY too many times. You can’t discount it.
You can’t discount the power of blogs as a collective.
Hell look at these Cindy Sheehan groupies. Listen/Read what she has said about the administration and this country. From her blog countless others are linked to spread the rhetoric.

We all have our missions: Even our friends here at JABBS.

Republican-Led House Passes Bill Allowing Religious Discrimination

Pelosi Offers To Nix Pet Projects To Help Pay For Katrina. DeLay's Response? Nah.

What Does Capturing Bin Laden Mean To The Bush Administration? Not As Much As In 2001, Or During The Election Campaign

For Latest Bush Nominee, It's Not What She Knows. It's Who She Knows.

Spin it however you want but its clear. Discredit Bush, discredit republicans, get your people in power at all cost.

Sorry Rob I don’t distinguish between the paid and the unpaid liberal attack soldiers.

12:32 PM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Spin it however you want but its clear. Discredit Bush, discredit republicans, get your people in power at all cost.
>>

Or, put a different way, expose Bush, expose Republicans, for the fact that they aren't on your side.

How can anyone look at the actions of Tom DeLay and think that he's looking out for anyone other than Tom DeLay? Our CEO president is far more beholden to corporate America's needs (and-or the religious right) than the needs of the individual.

If the MSM isn't going to cover these issues and connect the dots, then you need other alternative media to do so. That may be the liberal press -- The Nation, Mother Jones, etc. -- or it may be the Internet media.

But, Snoop, I don't see you pointing out any inaccuracies in the stories posted by JABBS. Sorry if the truth offends you.

As for the debate between anonymous posters and paid pundits -- it's a silly argument, Snoop. People say all sorts of things under cover of anonymity. Even JABBS, by signing his articles, holds himself to a greater level of accountability. Not as great as someone on national television or in a major daily newspaper, but far more than someone posting under a fake name with no accountability.

6:43 PM  
Blogger Snoop said...

But, Snoop, I don't see you pointing out any inaccuracies in the stories posted by JABBS. Sorry if the truth offends you.

Rob I have read this an other liberal blogs enough that they all have inaccuracies, but most of all they don’t tell the “whole truth”.
I won’t bit more come here and try to get into a keyboard war proving my point no more than any liberal type would venture over to my blog and try to prove me wrong there.
Most liberals can’t. I at least will expose flaws on each side of an argument and provide some benefit of the doubt. This and other liberals blogs WON’T. You are out of power, demonizing this administration and this country is paramount.
Just like the Katrina disaster. I would have given ANY liberal blog at least a little credit if ONE, JUST ONE would have acknowledged wrongdoing or ineffectiveness at ALL levels.
No reasonable, honest, sane, individual with a straight face could possible say that what went on in New Orleans was ALL Bush’s fault.
If you did you are either delusional or you need to go back to school and take a civics or government class, this is not rocket science!
Some blogs even went as far as to excuse the stupidity of the Mayor and Governor that was simple irresponsibility.
So one little article about DeLay or any other single republican won’t sway my political mindset. He is an idiot HUMAN with HUMAN flaws. Having a R after his name does not make him more noble, nor does having a D after your name make you more compassionate, tolerant, caring, noble, LESS RACISTS.
I’m not republican because I think the guys with R’s after their name are cool. It’s a value system.
The problem with liberal politicians is they MUST hide who they are, they MUST deceive potential voters.
Dean makes racists comments about “the only way republicans could get this many blacks in a room for a meeting is if they brought in the hotel staff”
Democrats crying that the delayed response was because the people suffering was black.
Which was a bunch of crap.
Liberals extremists pulling people like Harry Reid (who is a NUT!) And Nancy Pelosi by the nose. And JABBS has the audacity to publish an entry saying she is going to give her federal funding back to the victims of Katrina when you know not only is that a lie, she can’t just technically “give it back”. She only considered it anyway. Utter deception at its finest.
This is why I think being a card carrying Democrat Liberal is frankly a joke.

1:11 PM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Snoop, your premise is that liberal blogs are wrong for not posting anti-liberal things?

That's why they're liberal blogs. Otherwise, they'd be non-partisan blogs.

Truth in advertising, baby. You don't like it, you can shop elsewhere.

And I love your comments on JABBS' Pelosi story:

"And JABBS has the audacity to publish an entry saying she is going to give her federal funding back to the victims of Katrina when you know not only is that a lie, she can’t just technically “give it back”. She only considered it anyway. Utter deception at its finest."

So JABBS is wrong for posting an item that is truthful, because you think that Pelosi is lying?

What a standard to maintain!!! If Snoop doesn't believe someone, it must not be true. And everyone should agree with Snoop! Wow! What an incredibly self-serving philosophy!

And again, JABBS, it's not fair to criticize David for the commenters here. Or for the most sarcastic or angry comments you can find elsewhere in the liberal blogosphere. And just because you disagree with David's posts doesn't mean they don't have value.

I did a Google news search, for example, of what David wrote about regarding the House bill that allows religious discrimnination. There were something like four newspaper articles nationwide. That's not great coverage by the mainstream media. That's why blogs can be very important -- filling in gaps in the MSM coverage.

10:28 AM  
Blogger Snoop said...

“So JABBS is wrong for posting an item that is truthful, because you think that Pelosi is lying?”

Rob spin this however you like.
The post was not truthful, it was deceptive. David and you know is only CONSIDERED giving the money back, but using common sense you would have to know that she can’t just give it back. Rob I don’t have to “think” she is lying. She is a liberal democrat. She will NOT give that money back.
The premise of the post was “liberal Pelosi wants to give money back and mean ole conservative would not consider such a thing”

“What a standard to maintain!!! If Snoop doesn't believe someone, it must not be true. And everyone should agree with Snoop! Wow! What an incredibly self-serving philosophy!

Yes because Snoop is rarely wrong, ESPECIALLY ABOUT LIBERALS!

Liberals are as predictable as the sun coming up.

And again, JABBS, it's not fair to criticize David for the commenters here. Or for the most sarcastic or angry comments you can find elsewhere in the liberal blogosphere. And just because you disagree with David's posts doesn't mean they don't have value.”

You see Rob I will close this string with what I said before.
I welcome any liberal to come on my blog and give me examples of truthful, thoughtful, upstanding liberals. Its one thing to hide in a blog world among post that you agree with.
Dig up your examples of liberal truthfulness, honesty, pro-American sentiment.
I’ll put you front and center.

Take the example on my blog a post I will have later about PETA and their racists animal cruelty campaign using the images of enslaved blacks to promote their cause.
Just like gay rights activists and liberal democrats pimping the images of blacks in New Orleans to attack Bush.
Also look at liberal blogs with those stupid ads with blacks on it asking to donate money.

Rob I am comfortable with my disdain for liberal democrats because finding examples of their lying, manipulating, deceitful, racists agenda is so easy. There is not enough time in the day to post the many examples.

11:17 AM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Snoop, your argument amounts to liberals are bad because I say they are. Pelosi is a liar because I say she is.

JABBS article said Pelosi "offered" to give back the money. So your characterization of the story is false.

You said: "The post was not truthful, it was deceptive. David and you know is only CONSIDERED giving the money back"

Hence the headline. Sorry, Snoop, maybe you need reading comprehension lessons?

JABBS tries to back up argument with actual facts. That's why I like coming here. You are making arguments based on sweeping stereotypes -- "my disdain for liberal democrats because finding examples of their lying, manipulating, deceitful, racists agenda is so easy."

In other words, your argument is my opinion is right, yours is wrong. That just doesn't fly in a reality-based universe.

1:00 PM  
Anonymous Russell Cole said...

Did anyone here about Brown's - the former head of FEMA - new business venture? I am not kidding; he is lounching his own consulting firm that specializes in disaster preparedness. I must emphatically state once again that I am not making this up. Apparently, his knowledge of what not to do qualifies him as a valuable asset to companies who seek the imput from incompentants. I could come up with millions of things not to do, but I would not consider this ability to be of service when comes to learning of what to do. I suggest going to The New Republic website in order to find a extremely funny editorial on this subject.
Russell
ole38

12:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

best regards, nice info » »

4:17 AM  

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