1 When I wrote today’s early morning post about the Sherwin-Williams controversy, with a “hit the ball into the paint can” promotion going horrible wrong thanks to fake news and lying sports reporters, I wanted to use a famous old cartoon based on a sign that hung in the outfield in old Ebbets Field, where the Brooklyn Dodgers used to play. I couldn’t find it online, perhaps because it was 4 am. I just did, however…
2. For some time, now, as the Left has commenced its nervous breakdown following Trump’s election, I have faced a daily dilemma. The ethics breaches, in civility, in journalism, in politics, have been so over-weighted to one side of the political spectrum that to cover issues based on importance and degree of ethics madness automatically makes Ethics Alarms seem partisan. I resent it, to be honest. The counterbalance is, of course, the President himself, but his brand of unethical conduct hasn’t changed since the campaign, though the Trump-haters never tire of freaking out over the same stuff. For example, after the infamous wrestling tweet about CNN, how nuts can you go when Trump posts a gag video showing him hitting Hillary in the head with a golf ball? Yes, it’s childish, yes, its unpresidential, yes, it shows lack of self-restraint, yes, it’s stupid. But I know and you know, and certainly his haters know, that Trump is childish, unpresidential, lacks self-restraint, and is stupid. I’ve written too much about it already.
He is not, however, getting worse. Democrats, progressives and “the resistance” are getting worse, as they become more desperate in their derangement. I’m seeing things I didn’t believe possible, like serial child abuser Jimmy Kimmel being held up by the news media as the moral center of the Democratic Party. Jimmy Kimmel is nothing. He is a smug high school grad who has never done anything but perform, often disgustingly, as when he was host of the too-vulgar-to-be-believed “Man Show” on Comedy Central.
He’s never run a business; he’s never studied public policy. He’s a comedian whose signature act is egging on parents to make their kids cry and take videos of them. Ah, but he’ll give Hillary Clinton a forum to deliver her shadow UN speech, and pimp for Obamacare, so that makes him a policy expert. Incredible. Incredible, the depths to which progressives have fallen.
An immature, inexperienced, impulsive President, rather than being opposed, as he should be, by a professional, honest, respectable and responsible opposition party, has instead mutated the liberal establishment into as revolting a presence as he is. This is catastrophic for our politics, our culture, and our society, and that’s why Ethics Alarms devotes so much space to it.
3. Ann Althouse has the sharpest hypocrisy detector around, and she nailed horror novelist Stephen King (I like his novels, some of his movies, and he is a big Red Sox fan) for sending this anti-Trump tweet:’
Trump thinks hitting a woman with a golf ball and knocking her down is funny. Myself, I think it indicates a severely fucked-up mind.
She writes in part,
Maybe this is a takes-one-to-know-one situation, but I can barely think of a person who is more implicated in the popularization of the use of images of violence for the casual amusement of the American people….look at Stephen King’s new book (co-written with his son), “Sleeping Beauties,” reviewed here (in The Washington Post):
“Sleeping Beauties” takes place in the little Appalachian town of Dooling, W.Va., which for no apparent reason becomes ground zero of a worldwide gyno-epidemic, known as the Aurora Flu: The moment any woman falls asleep, she’s immediately covered in a sticky white cocoon, like a full-body cotton-candy wrap. What’s worse, terrified family members who break open these cocoons find that their mothers, sisters and daughters have transformed into bloodthirsty killers. “It’s, like, the ultimate P-M-S,” one yahoo says….
President Trump… enjoys some laughing at a woman knocked down by a golf ball, and King enjoys 700 pages of women knocked out of consciousness and bound up by a sticky white substance. How could only one of these things be indicative of a severely fucked-up mind?
4. Googling around on the topic of the Left’s abandonment of sanity and reality, I came across Ace Of Spades musing about the same issue from his usual hard right perspective. Unlike me, he thinks the self-immolation of the Left in hate and emotionalism is a good thing.
In the old days, if the media pretended to be impartial but then leaned a story to favor their left-liberal buddies, most normal Americans wouldn’t really notice the bias. They’d view the media as trustworthy, and not really all that political (Just Like Me!), and they would buy the bias. These small pushes are more effective than aggressive shoves, because small pushes can be subtle enough to pass undetected, whereas aggressive shoves are obvious and clumsy — and people get their hackles up when they realize the nightly newscast is nothing but a 30 minute political ad. (And people hate political ads.)
…if [an ESPN] host made a snarky aside about Republicans, the viewers would think, “Hey, I like this guy, and he made a funny snarky comment about Republicans. Boy, Republicans really are dicks, aren’t they?”But again, it’s the subtle aside, the pickpocket’s light-fingered touch, that works. Not the pedal-to-the-metal obvious-on-its-face full-spectrum propagandizing.
That pushes people away.
It’s weird. It’s obsessive.
It’s Not Like Me.
People don’t like to feel like they’re being had — and the minute you get clumsy and impatient in your con and let your mark know you’re conning him, he’s not a mark anymore. Now he’s an enemy. I could go on and on, obviously. But you get it. They have decided themselves to no longer wear the mask of Just Like You, but instead to show their true face of Not Like You.
They live in a bubble and the only people they know or listen to are also showing their Not Like You face, so they don’t think this is abnormal. After all, if all of my #SmartSet friends are signalling how intensely, weirdly, obsessively partisan and ideological they are, it must be a good idea, right?
Pro-Tip: No, not if the people you think are the #SmartSet are actually profoundly stupid and currently mentally unstable.
Diversity and Comics — a YouTube critic of Marvel’s descent in nonstop political propaganda — has noted that comic books used to be a fairly “happy” and “mainstream” hobby and diversion. Maybe not entirely mainstream, but mainstream as far as the nerdier edge of mainstream.
But now comic books are — like the media, like ESPN — constantly engaging in weird, Not Like You angry political propaganda for all sorts of weird, fringe obsessions — like pushing grossly obese super-heroes because hey, you’re healthy at any size.
Oh the anger! I used to counsel readers not to show anger when attempting to persuade someone, because you have to match your emotional state to the target’s as the first step in persuasion.
But the left is angry — insanely so — and needs you to know it.
And it’s weird. Not Like Me at all!
They’re alienating their audience — and shedding their audience by the thousands — not just because the audience disagrees with their politics. That’s part of it, sure.
But they’re losing readers because a lot of their audience just doesn’t really think of themselves as one of those Not Like Me intense partisans always nattering on about fringe political issues….The media used to know this — a woman’s magazine would mostly just serve up beauty tips and celebrity interviews, and just slip in the occasional “Republicans are weird” message….But they’ve forgotten. Or, more likely, they’ve just gone so insane they don’t care what actually works as far as propaganda any longer.
They’re now just engaging in primal-screaming public displays of hyperemotional venting — and they don’t care that this is Not Like Me as far as their audience is concerned.
They’re destroying themselves, and sabotaging their own propaganda operations, because they’re just too crazy to think or care about such things any longer.
And I gotta tell you: I love it.
Well, I don’t love it. It’s disastrous. It is also unethical, dangerous and accelerating, and if enough sane, fair, intelligent people grab their friends by their metaphorical shoulders, maybe we can stop it, or at least slow it down.
5. Here is why it is impossible to know what is real and what is propaganda in the climate change debate, thanks to news media bias and incompetence.
Conservative websites are furiously linking to this report from the conservative British tabloid The Telegraph. It begins,
Climate change poses less of an immediate threat to the planet than previously thought because scientists got their modelling wrong, a new study has found. New research by British scientists reveals the world is being polluted and warming up less quickly than 10-year-old forecasts predicted, giving countries more time to get a grip on their carbon output.
An unexpected “revolution” in affordable renewable energy has also contributed to the more positive outlook. Experts now say there is a two-in-three chance of keeping global temperatures within 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels, the ultimate goal of the 2015 Paris Agreement.
Now, my confirmation bias is that this sounds reasonable. I’d like to read the study, but the Telegraph story is mostly behind a paywall. Surely, however, if this is a legitimate study, those findings are big news. I couldn’t find any mainstream news outlet covering it, however, or even acknowledging its existence. However, I did run across this, from two days ago in the Times:
Climate Change Is Complex. We’ve Got Answers to Your Questions.
By JUSTIN GILLIS
We know. Global warming is daunting. So here’s a place to start: 17 often-asked questions with some straightforward answers.
There is nothing more infuriating, and little that is more dishonest, than a newspaper promising straightforward answers and, by inference, an unbiased perspective, that is really just another piece of slanted propaganda. That’s what this was.
For example, under the question, “How much is the Earth heating up?” Justin tells us, “As of early 2017, the Earth had warmed by roughly 2 degrees Fahrenheit (more than 1 degree Celsius) since 1880, when records began at a global scale.”
- Roughly means what? It means its an approximation.
- . Who believes that scientists had the capacity to accurately measure “the Earth’s” temperature in 1880? 1900? 1930? I’ll tell you who: those who want to believe the most dire climate change predictions, and those who are science dummies. I believe the Earth has been warming, but when advocates pull obvious deceptions like Justin’s fake certainty about what isn’t certain, I stop trusting anything they say. As should you.
Here’s another example: the answer to “Could natural factors be the cause of the warming?” is a smug “Nope.” Then Justin writes, “In theory, they could be.”
Then the answer is “yes,” not “nope.”
Later, Justin’s answer to his question, “Why do people deny the science of climate change?” is “Mostly because of ideology.” I would accept this if it was accompanied by the question, “Why do journalists, elected officials, progressives and environmentalists uncritically accept hyped climate change alarms by people like Al Gore, when they lack the knowledge to critically assess the data?” and the exact same answer.
What follows next are a series of questions that the Times pretends to answer unequivocally, and then equivocates. For example, the question “How much will the seas rise?” is answered,
“The real question is how fast.”
No, the real question is “how much”? In the next paragraph, Justin writes,
The ocean has accelerated and is now rising at a rate of about a foot per century, forcing governments and property owners to spend tens of billions of dollars fighting coastal erosion. But if that rate continued, it would probably be manageable, experts say.
All experts? Some experts? What experts? Do other experts say otherwise? That is not a straightforward statement—you know, what the Times promised—and neither is this:
The risk is that the rate will increase still more. Scientists who study the Earth’s history say waters could rise by a foot per decade in a worst-case scenario, though that looks unlikely.”Many experts believe that even if emissions stopped tomorrow, 15 or 20 feet of sea level rise is already inevitable, enough to flood many cities unless trillions of dollars are spent protecting them. How long it will take is unclear. But if emissions continue apace, the ultimate rise could be 80 or 100 feet.
Wait: I thought the “real question was how fast.” This “answer” is full of doubt about how much as well—“could rise”…”worst-case scenario”…”looks unlikely”…”could be.” Many experts again—how many? Which ones? Who are the dissenters? What do they say?
The Times has given us a perfect microcosm of the climate change deceit: insisting that there is certainty when there obviously is not.