Sunday, March 4, 2012

Kirsten Powers Attacks Left-Wing Misogyny; & Other Recent Media Bias [Update: The Left Responds, And So Does Powers]

Kirsten Powers is a liberal columnist for the Daily Beast, as well as a contributor to USA Today and the Fox News network.  For those of you unfamiliar with Ms Powers, and who refuse to watch Fox News, she is a frequent guest among many liberals that provide their view on events.  And for those of you, dear readers, who are unfamiliar with this web log, allow me to say that my views tend to fall somewhat right of center.

I watch her with interest (beyond the obvious eye-candy aspect so common with women in the visual media) because she will make an understandable case for the standard liberal view of the subject at hand, but I must therefore often disagree with her.  Some of her comments I consider stupefying, such as her blithe, dismissive accusations of racism.  In fact, an easy overview of her Fox oeuvre shows her to be rather thin-skinned on the subject of racism, sexism and other such knee-jerk reactions that the Left so reflexively exhibit.

She is so sensitive in this area that she will ably take on her fellow travelers in the MSM, in an article in the Daily Beast entitled “Rush Limbaugh Isn’t the Only Media Misogynist”.  She invokes Limbaugh’s name as the focus for a fête of recent MSM frenzy because he (as she explains it) “finally apologized Saturday for calling a 30-year-old Georgetown Law student, Sandra Fluke, a ‘slut’ after she testified before congress about contraception.”  (More in the way of explanation later.)

Powers takes on the hypocrisy of the Left in staccato fashion:

As for Ed Shultz of MSNBC, he called Sarah Palin a “bimbo” and Laura Ingraham a “right-wing slut” (though he was forced to apologize), and even called Ms Powers a “‘bimbo’ for the offense of quoting him accurately in a New York Post column.”

Keith Olbermann said that S E Cupp should have been aborted, called Michelle Malkin a “mashed-up bag of meat with lipstick”, and pondered on air about the natural size of Carrie Prejean’s breasts.  When Hillary Clinton was running against Barack Obama, he said that someone should “take her into a room and only he comes out”.

Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone said that he imagined Michelle Malkin narrating her text while doing something involving male genitalia, in the style of Demosthenes (I will leave the exact quote to Ms Powers).  He called Michele Bachmann “batshit crazy”.  He criticized Hillary Clinton for her “flabby arms”, and when Erica Jong berated him, he called her an “800-year-old sex novelist”.  (Powers: “Jong is almost 70, which apparently makes her an irrelevant human being.”)

CNN’s Chris Matthew’s “sickening misogyny” includes Hillary Clinton as a frequent target since she had the effrontery to challenge Barack Obama for the nomination in 2008, and of course he attacks Palin and Bachmann.

But HBO’s Bill Maher is the “grand pooh-bah of media misogyny” who often includes obscenity when describing conservative women, including Palin, Bachmann, and Rick Santorum’s wife.

Toward the end, Powers puts it quite nicely:
Liberals – you know, the people who say they “fight for women” – comprise Maher’s audience, and a parade of high-profile liberals make up his guest list.  Yet have any of them confronted him?  Nope.  That was left to Ann Coulter, who actually called Maher a misogynist to his face, an opportunity that feminist icon Gloria Steinem failed to take when she appeared on his show in 2011. . . .  [W]hen it comes to high-profile campaigns to hold these men accountable – such as that waged against Limbaugh – the real fury seems reserved only for conservatives, while the men on the left get a wink and a nod as long as they are carrying water for the liberal cause.
As for Ms Fluke, the media turned on Rush Limbaugh for calling her a “slut”, and many of the stories take this clearly off-base remark out of context.  Yes, he went too far, and he has agreed and apologized for his terminology.  But as to her testimony, called to address a congressional panel at the invitation of Nancy Pelosi in order to show a woman’s side of the contraception part in the fight over Obamacare, Fluke made the absurd claim that, as a result of her own research,
Forty percent of the female students at Georgetown Law reported to us that they struggled financially as a result of this policy. . . . Without insurance coverage, contraception, as you know, can cost a woman over $3,000 during law school.
That is $1,000 a year for contraception.  That’s amazing – when does she find time to study?  And all this on the premise that for some reason, it is expected that the federal government will provide birth control support to women for free.  (Consider that her claims ignore the fact of the Planned Parenthood clinic around the corner that provides free and discounted support.)  It was also revealed today that she attended Georgetown with the purpose to battle the insurance coverage, as a past president of the Law Students for Reproductive Justice.  In other words, she is a shill for Nancy Pelosi.

Powers reserves her spot-on attacks to just the subject of misogyny, and it is far from complete.  But other topics are fair game too.  Immediately after the tragic shooting of Gabrielle Giffords and eighteen others (six of whom died), the Left assigned blame to an atmosphere of hate drummed up by conservatives and talk radio (much like Bill Clinton did in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing).  Once it was shown that the shooter was a political agnostic and was clearly mentally unbalanced, the Left quickly pivoted to a demand for ‘civility’ in political discourse, which they promptly ignored.  Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa (the younger) spoke of a war against the Tea Party and called on the Teamsters to “take these sons of bitches out”.  Obama followed him moments later and made no comment about Hoffa’s incendiary remarks.  On that same topic of union workers battling against (in this case) Wisconsin Republicans, Representative Michael Capuano (D-Massachusetts) said that “Every once and awhile you need to get out on the streets and get a little bloody when necessary.”

The sudden death of conservative blogger and activist Andrew Breitbart was marked by unrepentant glee by Matthew Yglesias of Slate ("Conventions around dead people are ridiculous.  The world outlook is slightly improved with [him] dead."  Charlie Spiering of the Washington Examiner lists a multitude of others from Twitter), and Matt Taibbi (again) of Rolling Stone used a pathetic excuse of attempted satire cum homage in his article (“Death of a Douche”) when he announced that he “couldn’t be happier” that Breitbart was dead.

Charles Blow of the New York Times posted a ‘tweet’ in response to Mitt Romney’s concern about society and children born out of wedlock: “Let me just tell you this Mitt 'Muddle Mouth': I'm a single parent and my kids are *amazing*! Stick that in your magic underwear."  Blow later apologized, “without caveats”, and without concern that Thomas Monson would declare a fatwa for his execution, nor need he be concerned that the Times’ editorial board will bother about his unprofessionalism.

Larry Doyle of Huffington Post wrote “The Jesus-Eating Cult of Rick Santorum” in which – all in the name of ‘satire’ (though it was published on the blog and not in the Comedy section) – he accuses the Roman Catholic church as a hotbed of pedophilia, being led by a former Nazi, and goes on to drum up accusations about Christians not heard since the days of Diocletian.  There have been calls for his firing (though no Christians have called for his beheading) for his insult to Christians, but I would have fired him for his execrable style – he just isn’t funny and his tone is puerile – though he is acclaimed on the Left in that emperor’s-clothes sort of way, and his career is preserved for the moment in the same way that the Smothers Brothers, Cheech & Chong, George Carlin or Lenny Bruce have been extolled.  (Face it, they weren’t funny either, just ‘edgy’ and ‘courageous’ in the way they took on the ‘system’.  If you didn’t laugh, you just weren’t enlightened.)  After the expected reaction, he wrote what was purported to be an apology, but said, “It's traditional at this point for me to half-apologize, to say that I'm sorry if anybody was offended, but I really don't mind if anybody was offended.”  In case you missed the true point, he posted the non-apology on his Facebook page under the post of “Stupid goddamn Catholics, this is for you.”

It goes on, though there is no way that I can begin to list all the examples that come to mind.  CNN’s chief news executive Jordan Eason finally admitted in 2003 (after the US invasion of Iraq) that he had suppressed stories about Saddam Hussein's atrocities, “murders, tortures, and planned assassinations” for over ten years in order to preserve CNN’s Baghdad bureau and its access.  One has to wonder how many times, and in how many places, this has been replicated.  Eason did not resign over this astounding admission, but finally did so after his accusation, at Davos in 2005, that the US military had targeted journalists in Iraq.  There was an initial scurry of the Left in trying to defend him, saying that his remarks weren’t recorded or transcribed, but that fell apart after several witnesses, including Rep. Barney Frank, stated that they heard his remarks.

In 2010, the Director General of the BBC Mark Thompson, in a statement surprising to no one, admitted to “massive bias to the Left”.  He also admitted that a BBC internal audit had come to the same conclusion in 2007, but he pledged to lead an effort to remedy the imbalance.  I am still watching for improvement.

If only our own major media could be as forthcoming about their bias.  But they won't.

Update: Predictably, the Left has struck back at Kirsten Powers, more out of a sense of apostasy than any other, as she dared to diverge from the party line by calling out the plank in the eye of her critics (Luke 6:42, assuming that any of them are familiar with it).  Take for example Billy Hallowell’s article about various Leftist commentators and their ‘apologies’, but one is struck by how grudging and inadequate they are.  (S E Cupp’s reply to them: “I could hardly hear the ‘apology’ through the din of insults.”)

Within two days Powers posted another article in The Blaze taking them to task yet again, nailing them with the fact that they just don’t (or won’t) get it.
Let’s just call a spade a spade: the uproar over Limbaugh is only because it fits into the Democratic narrative that the GOP is “anti-woman.”  It’s Democratic Party activism dressed up as feminism.

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