Oh, NOW I Get It! People Are Furious At The Kavanaugh Confirmation Because They Believe Divisive Fear-Mongers And Partisan Liars Like David Leonhardt! [Part I]

I know: I could spend all my time debunking unethical columns like Times pundit David Leonhardt’s piece a few days ago. However, since I noted in the previous post that I was puzzled by the fury of so many people regarding what was, in any objective assessment, a fair and competent—and, thank god, successful—effort by Republicans to prevent Democrats from shredding basic principles of justice and fairness in their desperate effort to preserve a favorable ideological balance on the Supreme Court as if they were entitled to it (They weren’t, because elections have consequences), I am obligated to inform the assembled that my puzzlement was cleared by his screed.

There are pundits like Leonhardt who are actively trying to foment fury and division, they are using false narratives, deceit and lies to do it, and newspapers like the Times and news networks like CNN and MSNBC are actively promoting the effort. I won’t waste my time and yours on the whole column, fun as it would be, but just this section:

If you’re not angry yet, you should be.

Let’s review: Decades ago, a businessman built a fortune thanks in large measure to financial fraud. His corrupt gains helped him become famous. He then launched a political career by repeatedly telling a racist lie, about the first black president secretly being an African.

This lie created an audience in right-wing media that made possible a presidential campaign. During that campaign, the candidate eagerly accepted — indeed, publicly sought — the illegal assistance of a foreign enemy. When national security officials raised alarm with Congress, before Election Day, leaders of the candidate’s party refused to act.

The foreign assistance appears to have been crucial to the candidate’s narrow victory. He won with only 46.1 percent of the popular vote, less than 16 losing candidates over the years had, including Mitt Romney, John Kerry, Williams Jennings Bryan and the little-remembered Horatio Seymour.

Having won, the new president filled a Supreme Court seat that his party had stolen with an unprecedented power grab. This weekend, the president finished filling a second seat, through a brutal, partisan process. During it, the president, himself an admitted sexual molester, mocked victims of abuse.

Together, the two new justices have cemented an extremist Republican majority on the Supreme Court. It has already begun acting as a kind of super-legislature, throwing out laws on voting rights, worker rights, consumer rights and political influence buying. Now, the court is poised to do much more to benefit the wealthy and powerful at the expense of most Americans — and the planet.

This is not how democracy is supposed to work.

That’s right: democracy doesn’t work when journalists are complicit in fomenting public division and violence to advance a political agenda.

Let’s assess the mendacity…

1. Leonhardt’s opening statement links to the Times hit piece on President Trump’s father, and falsely asserts as fact what is a Times allegation only, and a misleading one. No fraud has been proven or charged, and the IRS of multiple administrations did not find Fred Trump’s tax practices fraudulent. That statement would be libel if published by a non-journalist about a non-public figure with the same amount of “evidence.”

2. “He then launched a political career by repeatedly telling a racist lie, about the first black president secretly being an African.”  Nobody seriously believed that Trump was entering politics in 2011 when he floated “possibly” running for President, and cited birther theories in the process.  The idea was to get publicity, which was always Trump’s objective. The birther nonsense was stupid, but it was not “racist,” and the accusation was not that Obama was “African,” but that he was not a “natural born citizen” and thus not eligible to be President. You will recall, if Leonhardt does not, that Trump tried the same thing on Ted Cruz. Was that “racist”?

Leonhardt is pushing the false and inflammatory narrative that Trump, ergo Republicans, ergo conservatives, ergo anyone who supports the President, is a racist. Ergo evil. Ergo not worthy of respect and fairness….

Trump’s actual political career became reality when he denounced the Democratic support for illegal immigration, and correctly so.

3. “This lie [the birther claim] created an audience in right-wing media that made possible a presidential campaign.” Trump’s birther period was an impediment to his candidacy in 2016. And it was the mainstream media, notably CNN, that made Trump’s candidacy viable by giving him free publicity to the virtual exclusion of other GOP candidates.

4. “Eagerly accepted”—what does that mean? Whatever the Russian interference wasn’t was, it wasn’t offered! The just did it. This is, again, pure manipulation and misrepresentation.

 There is more,I’ll be back shortly with Part II.

 

7 Comments

Filed under Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, History, Journalism & Media, U.S. Society

7 responses to “Oh, NOW I Get It! People Are Furious At The Kavanaugh Confirmation Because They Believe Divisive Fear-Mongers And Partisan Liars Like David Leonhardt! [Part I]

  1. Who remembers when the Left flew into an outrage because Ronny Jackson gave him a clean bill of health?

    I know, I know, their outrage then seems rather sedate compared to them now, but it was an odd level of outrage over a mere medical announcement.

  2. Name Redacted

    It is a tried and true propaganda tactic to paint the enemy, for example Republicans and Conservatives, as an “other”,”less than human”, or “evil”. Labeling them such makes them easier to hate, and even easier to justify acts of violence against.

    Just ask former two time presidential candidate, and sore loser Hillary Clinton. She is the living embodiment of unethical rationalizations:

    #1 The Golden Rationalization-“Everybody does it”

    #2 Ethics Estoppel, or “They’re just as bad”
    #2A Sicilian Ethics, or “They had it coming”
    #11A “I deserve this!”, or “Just this once!”
    #13 The Saint’s Excuse, or “It’s for a good cause”
    #19A The Insidious Confession, or “It wasn’t the best choice”
    #22 The Comparative Virtue Excuse, or “There are worse things”
    #28 The Revolutionary’s Excuse, or “These are not ordinary times”

    and my personal favorite,

    #31 The Troublesome Luxury Excuse, or “Ethics is a luxury we cannot afford right now”

  3. THIS, more than anything, is what will destroy Democrat hopes for the med terms.

    Trump has all the seeds of self immolation already present in his psych. Democrats could just appear rational, and let Trump fall. Instead, they have supported unfounded accusations, with ever increasing violations of our political process, civic responsibility, and basic decency. They were raised into power, having been in power most of 60 years, and think they are entitled to rule.

    Americans think otherwise, and all this sort of hatred does is drive rational citizens of whatever stripe away… and into Trump’s arms.

    I am now fairly certain, absent massive voter fraud, that there will be a red wave in November. My next question, given how radical leftists are acting today, is will they riot in response?

    • Sarah B.

      I am actually somewhat concerned, seeing my (previously intelligent) lefty friends and family embracing the craziest of notions and rhetoric, that, should there be a red wave come November, there will be drastic and irreversible reactions. Perhaps not to the level of Ft. Sumter, but it’s probably going to be awful. Also, should a Trump run for and succeed at reelection, I’m concerned that another Ft. Sumter may truly occur. I wouldn’t have thought it possible, but this Kavanaugh bit has truly caused people I thought were intelligent and responsible to throw any sort of sense to the wind. Even my never-Trump independents are saying Kavanaugh isn’t qualified for Supreme Court due to Fourth Ammendment concerns. They are claiming that Trump will send out policemen to kill them in their homes. Trump Derangement Syndrome is becoming severe and I’m seeing calls for the craziest of behavior. Rioting would not surprise me in the slightest.

  4. Chris Marschner

    If I recall correctly, he repeated the birther claim that originated in the HRC campaign.

  5. Eagerly accepted”—what does that mean? Whatever the Russian interference wasn’t was, it wasn’t offered! The just did it. This is, again, pure manipulation and misrepresentation.

    I doubt even a tenth of those who whine about Russian interference whined about the leak of that Access Hollywood tape.

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