November 21, 2002

Glenn backpedals and backpedals, remains clueless

Judging by this:

TAPPED still has its panties in a wad over the Martha Burk fertility-control "satire" issue, which McElroy also mentions. But I repeat: a non-lefty white male wouldn't be allowed to claim "satire" as a defense for writing something similar about fertility control in women -- any more than he would be allowed to claim "Halloween" as a defense for appearing in blackface.

Still no evidence for the assertion that "non-lefty" white males cannot write satire, though Glenn seems to think refering to the blackface case helps prove something. What is unclear though, as satire is not the same as pulling a stupid fratboy stunt. Glenn still doesn't understand satire either. A "non-lefty white male" writing "something similar about fertility control in women" is not satire --indeed, fertility control in women is what Burk was satireizing! (Note btw that it's a "lefty non-male" who's being scolded for writing a satire...)

In a broader context, if somebody is offended by your writing, claiming it was humour or satire is no defense, just as "it's for Halloween" is indeed no defense for doing something as stupid as dressing up in blackface. But Glenn wasn't offended by Burk's spoofed, he was fooled by it. He took it serious. Which says something about his reading comprehension. Even out of its original context, this is clearly recognisable as satire. The phrase "a modest proposal" is a dead giveaway. ("I'll take Swift's satire on the Irish Question for $500, Alex.")

Further down in the same article:

UPDATE: TAPPED has another post on this, and -- even after a long and cordial series of emails with Armed Liberal, who shares TAPPED's view -- all I can say is "you guys just don't get it." It's not about Martha Burk. It never was about Martha Burk. (Though if you think that calling Burk's piece "satire" changes the face of feminism you're showing your ignorance. There are other writings by academic feminists calling for the elimination of men and similar absurdities in dead earnest, though at nearly midnight I'm not going to run them down. But as a guy who once edited Catharine MacKinnon, I know a bit about this stuff). It's all about a double standard. Your "admit you were wrong about the satire" point is (1) utterly inconsistent with my original post; and (2) a conscious or unconscious effort to dodge the real issue, a double standard about speech that everyone knows exists, but that the left dare not admit -- because its whole existence depends on both the double standard, and not admitting it.

If we go back to the first post Glenn made on this subject, it becames clear that the above is one big fat lie:

MARGARET ATWOOD UPDATE: Porphyrogenitus has found that Martha Burk, currently busy trying to achieve gender integration at Augusta National, has made some fertility-control proposals of her own. Call it A Handmaid's Tale in reverse.

To recap: it was from the start about Martha Burk, Glenn was wrong about her piece and the criticism he got was not inconsistent with his original post; his point about satire being disallowed for conservative white males was a side issue only in the updates to this entry.

November 20, 2002


Can you believe this?

But, as I thought was abundantly clear, my point was that if, say, Hootie Johnson wrote a piece calling for all women to be equipped with Norplant, to be removed only with the consent of their "designated partners" nobody would be bending over backwards to cut him slack because it was a spoof. How hard is this point to understand?

What most annoys me about Instapundit, more then his lying and slandering is this whining, these delusions of victimhood. This constant whine of "me so opressed", when he wouldn't know real oppression if it bulldozed his house. "Conservatives aren't allowed to write satire" my ass. Who's stopping them? Not the "liberal" media...

Course, with socalled conservatives like Ann "invade their countries and convert them to Christianity" Coulter around, any spoof or satire will have to be *very* broad to not be mistaken for a serious piece.

November 14, 2002

Oh, alright then

Just when you decide to stay away from the lunacy Glenn puts his foot in his mouth again:

READER CECIL TURNER WRITES that this is the best anti-war argument that he's seen:
The gist is that we should focus on Al Qaeda, contain Iraq, and avoid making new enemies among Arabs. It's wrong--suggesting there is no collusion between Iraq and terrorists, and that Islamist attacks are limited by depth of feeling rather than military capability--but at least it's coherent.
But the big question: why did I have to go to a conservative website to find it?
Beats me.

Is he deaf and blind? To take just one example from the anti-war letters found at Open Letters:

I do not know the real reason why your government is so willing to start another war, at a time when Osama Bin laden is still not found, Al Quada is regrouping and the war against terror is losing momentum.

A second example:

However, the administration has no compelling evidence that he poses an imminent threat to this country, nor that he bears any responsibility for any prior terrorist attacks on America, in particular the attacks of September 11, 2001. I lost my office in the World Trade Center that day. An acquaintance of mine lost his life. Nothing would make me happier than to see the men responsible for orchestrating those attacks brought to justice. Attacking Iraq is not only irrelevant to this task, but it will make that task harder by alienating many allies and potential allies whose cooperation is essential.

Courtesy of Atrios, take a look at what Instapundit's friends said when Al Gore dared suggest it might be a good idea to deal with Al Quada before starting on Iraq...

September 17, 2002

oh, for heaven's sake


KOFI ANNAN DELIVERS peace in our time. And there's a reason why you should be worried.

"Peace in our time" is of course what prime minister Neville Chamberlain promised after Munich in 1938, when Great Britain and France appeased Hitler by sacrifizing Czechoslowakia. In other words, Kofi Annan is appeasing Iraq according to our friend.

Why does he think so? Because Kofi Annan announced that Iraq would allow unconditional inspections to take place. The full text of the letter, written by the Iraqi foreign minister, announcing this decision can be found at Counterspin Central.

I.P. Watcher may be stupid, but she cannot understand why Glenn would think Iraq caving in to US pressure is appeasement. Earlier he stated that the inspections wouldn't work, according to one Gary Milhollin. Perhaps that's why he thinks of Iraq allowing inspections as "appeasement". How he knows the inspections would fail is a mystery, must be that crystal ball he owns.

September 16, 2002

Smear jobs


WHIGGING OUT purports to find a Democrats/Al Qaeda connection based on the Buffalo Five all being registered Democrats. Seems a bit of a stretch to me.

But not enough to not link to it, eh?

Let's see why Glenn felt the need to link to this incoherent rant:

So it should not remain ignored that there is an overlapping between the bad boys of Islam and elements of the Democratic party. In this article from the Buffalo News we learn that all five members of the al quaeda cell are registered Democrats, and I suspect most US Muslims vote the same way. And from FoxNews we learn of a march yesterday in DC by the "usual suspects" of the black and disgruntled Left elements of the party, protesting the war on terror as a purposeful distraction from bread and butter domestic issues. This march, few though there might have been in attendance (note Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton most definitely there), shows that there is a symbiosis of the Muslim and black communities that ties in not only with the Black Muslim movement associated with Farrakhan, but with the more establishment civil rights coalitions as well, who view American Muslims as potential allies fighting against the oppressor whites on high. This is dangerous for the reason that it may be influencing the tentative posture of the Democratic leadership who are keeping an eye on the Congressional and Senate races in '02 and '04. Let the light shine on this fact, because it is a threat to the nation right now as Tom Daschle and Richard Gephardt, two wily partisans who at least should know when to reign in their obstructionist tactics, are tap dancing around the issue of declaring war on Iraq despite millions of American lives and the future of American sovereignty on the line

Subtle stuff it is not. Blacks and Muslims are united to put pressure on the Democratic Party to oppose the War against Terror and so endanger national security is the message here.

And Instapundit? Clinton did not use McVeight to smear the right.


N.Z. BEAR points out bias in an Associate Press story on antiwar protests by Angela Watercutter -- though, to be fair, the bias could have been injected by an editor. Wouldn't be the first time that happened.

So speaketh Instapundit. According to N.Z. Bear's post the story is biased because the antiwar protestors all come off as thoughtful, but the one guy quoted as supporting war with Iraq, doesn't. He also objects to the last sentence of the article:

Two people were arrested at the rally following a confrontation between protesters and a heckler, Lt. Larry Minasian said.

His beef? The use of the word "heckler" and that the article didn't tell whether the people arrested were pro or anti war.

It's all a bit silly, isn't it? To take the latter objection first, it is clear that the writer was citing Lt. Larry Minasian. Take the use of "heckler" and the omission of the affliation of the arrestees up with him.

As for the quotes used, since we cannot know how many protestors and counterprotestors were present, we cannot know how accurate these were. In real life, things don't always balance out and it's perfectly possible that one side is represented by knuckleheads while the other side isn't. It's N.Z. Bear's own bias that makes him think there's something fishy going on. And he is biased, otherwise, why the cheap shot at Hesiod?

Once again, we see something that I.P. presents as a fact fall apart when you look at it closely. The damage is already done however, because how many of his readers will follow the link to N.Z. Bear and from there to the original article (note I.P. doesn't provide this link) or to Hesiod's criticism of N.Z. Bear?

This may seem like a lot of fuzz about nothing, was it not that I.P. does this all the time. This is only one example of how I.P., by continually citing other bloggers, presenting their opinions as facts, shifts the debate his way. By presenting an unending stream of small lies, half truths, near lies and slanted stories the causual reader is left with the overwhelming impression that e.g. AP is biased towards the left. Repetition works. Word choice is important: "N.Z. Bear points out bias", not "N.Z. Bear thinks there is bias". So is presenting a humor as serious: "JOHN WEIDNER SAYS that Sweden is on the road to extinction."

September 05, 2002

Keefer and Italie


HERE'S THE STORY of how one of SpinSanity's founders was encouraged to leave his union job for criticizing an article in The Nation by Robert Borosage. Excerpt:

Would Keefer feel free to criticize Wellstone's political rhetoric? Yes, Keefer answered. Well, that's a problem, Anderson replied, because that would be a fireable offense. "By that logic," Keefer complained, "I can't criticize most or all of the political left." According to Keefer, Anderson answered, "Yes, that's true."

I'm sure that Michael Moore will be all over this example of post-9/11 censorship in America.

The story, called "Can Your Boss Fire You for Your Political Beliefs? Part 2" talks about Bryan Keefer, one of the people behind Spinsanity and how he got into trouble with his employer for politicial reasons.

Keefer worked for Service Employees International Union (SEIU) when he wrote a critical piece about Robert Borosage for Spinsanity concerning an article Borosage had written in the Nation. The twist: Borosage is co-director of the Campaign for America's Future and SEIU's president Andrew Stern was a founding member of the Campaign for America's Future. All of which led to Keefer being cautioned then deciding to leave SEIU.

Quite a sordid little affair; Instapundit is right to call attention to it. What surprises I.P. Watcher though is that he fails to call attention to a far more serious case, explicitely linked to in the Slate article: that of Michael Italie, a sewing-machine operator fired by Goodwill Industries when he was running for Miami mayor on behalf of the Socialist Workers Party.

It's hypocritical of Glenn to expect Michael Moore to be outraged about Keefer's situation when he himself stays silent about the far greater outrage visited on Italie.

August 21, 2002

Is Instapundit Anti-American?

Just read:

A lot of people in DC say that the District is essentially a colony. Well, if so I think it's a colony that's not ready for self-government. It certainly wasn't when I lived there, and there's no sign that it's gotten better.

Better tell the Brits we made a mistake an twohundred-odd years ago...