• Tips gratefully accepted here. Thanks!:

  • Recent Comments

    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on And another thing…
    William on And another thing…
    William on And another thing…
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on The next obstacles on the…
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on The next obstacles on the…
    Beata on The next obstacles on the…
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on The next obstacles on the…
    Colorful Sisters on The next obstacles on the…
    William on The next obstacles on the…
    bellecat on So what?
    MsMass on So what?
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on So what?
    MsMass on So what?
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on So what?
    riverdaughter on So what?
  • Categories

  • Tags

    abortion Add new tag Afghanistan Al Franken Anglachel Atrios bankers Barack Obama Bernie Sanders big pharma Bill Clinton cocktails Conflucians Say Dailykos Democratic Party Democrats Digby DNC Donald Trump Donna Brazile Economy Elizabeth Warren feminism Florida Fox News General Glenn Beck Glenn Greenwald Goldman Sachs health care Health Care Reform Hillary Clinton Howard Dean John Edwards John McCain Jon Corzine Karl Rove Matt Taibbi Media medicare Michelle Obama Michigan misogyny Mitt Romney Morning Edition Morning News Links Nancy Pelosi New Jersey news NO WE WON'T Obama Obamacare OccupyWallStreet occupy wall street Open thread Paul Krugman Politics Presidential Election 2008 PUMA racism Republicans research Sarah Palin sexism Single Payer snark Social Security Supreme Court Terry Gross Texas Tim Geithner unemployment Wall Street WikiLeaks women
  • Archives

  • History

    April 2018
    S M T W T F S
  • RSS Paul Krugman: Conscience of a Liberal

  • The Confluence

    The Confluence

  • RSS Suburban Guerrilla

    • Surprise!
      Newly released data shows that properties owned by the Trump Organization and Kushner Companies profited from pandemic relief programs: In total, it was more than 25 PPP loans worth more than $3.65 million. https://t.co/O4Ltezu7lj — Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) December 2, 2020
  • RSS Ian Welsh

    • Schools and Covid
      Back in August, when it became clear that schools were going to reopen in countries like the US and Britain that did not have Covid under control, and which never would control Covid until there is a vaccine, I wrote an article warning against going back to school while Covid was out of control. I’d […]
  • Top Posts

#kissmyass A little more…

There is a lot of pearl clutching and toppling onto the fainting couch this morning about how “searing” and “vulgar” Michelle Wolf was at the White House Correspondents Dinner last night.

Here’s the best thing Michelle said last night:

“You guys are obsessed with Trump,”

“I think what no one in this room wants to admit is that Trump has helped all of you. He couldn’t sell steaks, or vodka, or water, or college, or ties, or Eric—but he has helped you. He’s helped you sell your papers and your books and your TV. You helped create this monster and now you’re profiting off of him. And if you’re gonna profit off of Trump, you should at least give him some money—because he doesn’t have any.

You know what? I don’t want to fucking hear about how vulgar she was in the rest of her speech. She nailed it. Go read the two posts I wrote on Amy Chozick if you don’t believe her.

We are in the worst crisis in our nation’s history since the Civil War. In fact, we are in a second civil war right now. The rebellion has spread beyond the south and now its marbled in all of our communities. Some more than others. I am beyond relieved to live where I do in Pittsburgh surrounded by hard working honorable people who I respect and like. I feel very sorry for Democrats stuck in Jackson, Mississippi or backwoods Georgia. But make no mistake, it’s out there and the tension between the two sides is palpable. Some days, they win a battle, some days we do. And it takes all our concentration on a daily basis to not rage against the way good people are being treated just because they have a different skin color, or aren’t CIS or are women or are sick or mentally ill or not white Anglo Saxon Protestant males.

God help you if you are not worth at least hundreds of millions of dollars in America these days. If you aren’t, and most of us aren’t, then you are a complete loser to the Trump contingent and the well connected wealthy people who bought their congressional representatives. Trump gives his voters the cheap thrill of bullying people they think are below them in the social hierarchy while directing their attention away from the neo-feudal lords who are taking everything that isn’t nailed down. What could be more nasty and brutish than that? Are we saying it’s more important to protect the fee-fees of Sarah Sanders who willfully enables the wholesale slaughter of our democracy than to protect the people who are on the losing end of it?

All of those people who are getting all prissy about Michelle Wolf gave us this moron having “campaign rallies” continuously since he took office.

This is a man who called Nazis “very fine people”.

That is one of the most vulgar and offensive things I have ever heard coming from the ugly little fish mouth of Donald Trump. There is nothing even remotely fine about Nazis. It would be like promoting satanism as our state religion.

Before they bluster and sputter and grab their smelling salts about what Michelle Wolf said, they should hold this man and his loathesome, lying borg of a press secretary accountable for the harm they are perpetrating on the vast majority of Americans (and let’s not even get started on the obscene way he has treated our American citizens in Puerto Rico).

Until then, they can all kiss my ass.

Addendum: Our press is very stupid. They think they can continue to use Trump as a revenue enhancing gimmick without repercussions. Oh, sure, he’s getting down on the media but they’re protected by the first amendment. What’s he going to do? Change the constitution??

That’s very possible. They should be studying what happened in Turkey, Hungary and Poland in the last several years. In fact, without an independent corporate media, the freedom of speech would still exist. We just wouldn’t hear much of it. The news would be relegated to blogs, provided net neutrality obliteration let you get to them. Or newspapers on paper, provided tariffs on newsprint still made that economically viable. There is always HAM radios I suppose but they require government issued licenses. Good luck with that.

If the press isn’t careful, it will be corralled into a metaphorical and actual free speech zone where they will have all the free speech they can eat and where they will disturb absolutely no one.

Second Addendum: the hypocrisy of the pearl clutches is over the top. Peter Daou puts it in perspective:

He’s talking about you, Amy.

She can dish it out.

Here are two more press related things.

First up, Michelle Wolf gets even at the White House Correspondents Dinner. Some of her jokes landed, like the ones about Trump’s wealth, some of them didn’t, like the ones about Sarah Sanders. I think of Sanders as the robotic experiment that crossed all the qualities of a refrigerator with the worst DMV clerk you have ever had to interact with. But what was missing in that image of SSDLX18 was her underlying religious zeal and dominant humorlessness. Wolf nailed it when she called Sanders “Aunt Lydia” after the sadistic capo in charge of the Handmaid’s training facility in the Handmaid’s Tale. (Season 2 is streaming on Hulu and it gets really dark this season. IKR?)

Wolf goes on to ping Sanders even more but probably no worse than how Trump treats everyone he doesn’t like. Remember how he made fun of Hillary and how he would never hit on “that!”? How about when he called Kim Jun-Un “little rocket man” and made fun of his “nuclear button”. Wolf was only settling the score since she was the most visible member of the Trump White House on the dais. Yep, called her a liar too. Calling someone a liar is never funny but she deserved it.

Wolf is not generally a political stand up. But after a year of the Trump administration, we’re all on our last nerves. Check her roast out here:

Second, I found another interview with Amy Chozick and one of the Slate group podcasts. This time, it’s I Have To Ask with Isaac Chotiner. I don’t want to put a Trump target on Slate but they’re flying under the radar as having some of the best and most biting commentary and analysis about the Trump era.

Isaac shreds Amy head on about the frothy, mean girl chatter that made up the bulk of the Clinton Campaign coverage in 2016. I don’t know whether Amy thought she was going to be interviewed by her own side or what exactly but this interview was even more revealing than Heffernan’s. It’s like someone gave Chozick truth serum but forgot to tell her to put a lid on her conspiratorial glee. You have GOT to listen to it to believe it. Here is part of the transcript:

When it comes to the issue of the emails, and the FBI investigation of Hillary Clinton’s handling of it, you say about the Times that “there was an insatiable appetite for email-related stories. I can’t explain it exactly except to compare it to a fever that spread through every newsroom and made us all salivate over the tiniest morsels.” You say you regret and resent this, but what role do you think the Times had in how big a story it became? And do you connect the way you describe the “salivating over the tiniest morsels” to your description of Ryan and the type of political stories the Times wanted?

I don’t say that it spread through the Times. I say it spread through every—the insatiable appetite is clearly across all media. It’s not specific to the Times in the book.

You say it “spread through every newsroom and made us all salivate over the tiniest morsels.” That presumably includes the Times.

“Us,” the media, yeah, the media including the Times. I think a lot of the furor over the emails came from cable news and what was feeding cable, so I want to make clear that that section wasn’t just about the Times. Look, I understand Hillary’s supporters complaining about the veracity and volume of stories around the email server. But I think it’s hard to say that the leading candidate for the presidency of the United States being under FBI investigation is a nonstory, which seems like what some of her supporters have argued. You can debate the legitimacy of the FBI investigation, but it was definitely a big story. There is an easy sense of comparing it to the scandals on the other side, on Trump’s side, and saying, “Well, compared to what Trump has done, it’s nothing.” I think it’s a dangerous proposition to say, well, because the other guy is beyond the pale, we are going to ignore this other big story.

That said, I do write in the book that I regret and even resent that it became the only story. We would go to see these press conferences when Hillary did them—because she rarely did—and reporters would just scream at her about emails. There would be people trying to get other questions in and it just got completely drowned out. My best example of this is that I spent a year trying to talk to this woman Sarah Ehrman, who was this feminist firebrand Democrat who Hillary lived with after law school when she was working on the Watergate committee and she was moving down to Arkansas to marry Bill Clinton. And Sarah Ehrman offered to drive her down and on the three-day road trip she tried to talk her out of it. She said, “You are throwing your life away. You are the most gifted woman I have ever met. You could do anything you want to do.” So I had wanted to re-create this road trip to show readers this vulnerable, different side of Hillary, and it took me a year to convince Sarah Ehrman to speak on the record. I had to bring her babka and wine, and finally I get the story together, and it posts [online] and three hours later Comey sends his letter to Congress, so the story never even made it into the paper. It was impossible to get other sympathetic stories to break through in the environment we were in.

“Yeah, it’s so strange how this environment got created. I have no idea how that happened. So, you know, we went for it because, what could we do??”

{{Oh my god}}

There’s more in that interview about the reason why they blew Hillary’s email story all out of proportion. She just wasn’t corrupt enough and the disparity between her and Trump was so big and glaring that it felt imbalanced. So they HAD to play up the email story because it was all they had. You’ve got to ask why it never occurred to the NYTimes that THAT was their story. She was squeaky clean and he was corrupt as f*ck. That was the story, Amy. You could have plumbed the depths of Trump’s corruption and compared it to Clinton. We had a right to know how corrupt he was in comparison to Clinton. Your job is to report reality, not distort it to sell papers.

By the way, Comey set the record straight about the “investigation”. It was more of an inquiry. There was never anything even the least bit criminal about her server and he anticipated from the beginning that the FBI wasn’t going to find anything. If the NYTimes had really been doing their work, they would have known all this from the beginning and they probably did. But just like Comey, they were afraid of looking like they were too soft on Hillary. Their audiences demanded blood in the water. Who were their audiences? Well, they were ALL of us. But they both overlooked that because… why exactly?

[It should be noted that Heffernan and Jacob Weisberg of Trumpcast reviewed Comey’s book, A Higher Loyalty, as well. Their review of his book was much more favorable. They think Comey is a good writer, and even though they didn’t always agree with his decisions, they understood what it was in Comey’s character and background that lead to them. Comey’s actions are explainable because they come from a core of a well defined personality.]

Comey is showing signs of definite remorse. He is painfully aware of what damage his letter did to his country and he reflects on his part in it. You can see him become more and more aware of this in his book tour interviews. He initially put aside his culpability but starts acknowledging it. Not so with Amy. For her it was all a big mean girl free for all where she played the more than witting. She knew what she was doing and loved every minute of humiliating Hillary.

I just want to know who put Amy up to writing this book in the first place. She comes across as the biggest ass kissing flying monkey to her editors. Or maybe she’s the sacrificial offering. Yeah, let’s make the overly eager wannabe from Texas the face of the NYTimes mean girl. She served her purpose. Amy acts like the Trump years are all going swimmingly as far as the Times is concerned or thinks everyone else in the media is kind of on its side. Turns out, not so much. Slate seems to have an excess of resistors at the moment and they are pulling back the dirty underside of the New York Times kimono. Amy is going to have to eat by herself when she gets back to her desk.