July 22, 2008

Humorless, marauding Kossacks mau mau the media [Karl]

It turns out that the denizens of the Daily Kos are just as humorless as the presidential candidate they support.  Newsbusters notes that the Kos Kidz were able to bully the Austin American-Statesman into pulling a mildly satirical article on the Netroots Nation conclave in Austin.  Apparently, some could not find the humor in a piece referring to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as “arguably so left-leaning that her parenthetical should be D-Beijing.”  Or could not chuckle over the sight of New York Times columnist Paul Krugman “wearing, as if to galvanize stereotype, what appeared to be Birkenstocks” to a panel “that was essentially about how the media weren’t liberal enough.” (BTW, Newsbusters also has a copy of the full article.)

Greg Mitchell of Editor & Publisher apparently alerted the nutroots to this crime against journalism by posting a summary of the article on his diary at DailyKos.  (Yes, the editor of “America’s oldest journal covering the newspaper industry” maintains a diary on dKos.)  He was upset that it appeared on the front page, though the print edition which upset him clearly identified the author, Patrick Beach, as a “features writer.”

The irony here is that the Beach article contains this:

It’s plinking bass in a barrel to paint liberals as overly intellectual types incapable of having fun unless reading Noam Chomsky counts, and it sure does for them…

So Beach — and his paper – knew how this feature would be received.  Accordingly, the paper should have had a semblance of a spine in standing by their story.

The other irony is that, unless Beach has undergone a total ideological conversion since our days on the college paper, this is another case of the Left enforcing an ideological purity on otherwise friendly media.  Pat was no right-winger when I knew him, but he knew a target-rich environment when he saw one.  I would bet that is still the case.

Posted by Karl @ 10:54am
52 comments | Trackback

Comments (52)

  1. I’m curious as to how you actually go about threatening a newspaper. Loss of circ? That horse has already left the barn, baby. Advertisers? Are there really that many advertisers who are willing to go along with the looney lefties at Kos?

    Somehow, I doubt it.

    Which means that utter spinelessness is the most likely explanation.

  2. mojo,

    Some of the complainers at least claimed to be locals who knew people at the paper. Which, it being Austin, is plausible.

  3. (Yes, the editor of “America’s oldest journal covering the newspaper industry” maintains a diary on dKos.)

    Thanks Karl. I was hoping someone would point this out.

    And leave to the Nutroots to step on their own dick.

  4. I’m curious as to how you actually go about threatening a newspaper. Loss of circ?

    Much like the Democrats threatened to revoke ABC’s broadcasting license if they air their docu-drama in full.

  5. My only question is whether Patrick Beach is wily enough to have orchestrated this from the jump?

    His article is going to be read by several hundred thousand more people than it would otherise, probably land him a spot on Red Eye, and get him a book deal.

    Some people call that a “template” for success. Jeff should get himself assigned to DNC as a features writer from some small local Colorado paper and pray that the Kossacks mau-mau that publication.

  6. Ah, it’s a Cox paper.

    And the editor’s name is Zipp? Say wha?…

  7. In case you are wondering why it was worthy of censorship spiking — via Maha (http://www.mahablog.com/2008/07/22/more-media-mayhem/)

    I didn’t go to Netroots Nation this year, I regret, but had I been there I’m sure I could have written something humorous and fun-poking about it. The problem with the “humorous” piece that was ripped down from the website of the Austin American Statesman is that it wasn’t a bit funny. It was just mean. Right-wing humor, in other words. (IMO actual, unvarnished ridicule is rarely funny.)

    Malkin has a big chunk of it on her website. But if you want to get the Cliff’s Notes version, see Greg Mitchell at Daily Kos. My impression is that the “writer” of the piece built it entirely from ancient stereotypes of “leftists” without bothering to pull his head out of his ass long enough to notice if the stereotypes still apply.

    Genuine wit reveals something real. As Mark Twain said, “Humor is the good natured side of a truth.”

    The part of the spiked piece that most offended me is “Pelosi is so far left her title should include (D-Beijing).” Pelosi has shown more cojones, as it were, in speaking out against Beijing and its Tibet policies than any Republican I can think of.

    That’s why it wasn’t funny.

  8. “It was just mean. Right-wing humor, in other words. (IMO actual, unvarnished ridicule is rarely funny.)”,

    Straight out of central casting.

  9. My only question is whether Patrick Beach is wily enough to have orchestrated this from the jump?

    From my experience, this is Pat Beach being Pat Beach (though he might do well on Red Eye).

    Also, I was unaware until moments ago that he wrote a book that suggests that I was right to bet that he remains pretty solidly left-of-center.

  10. I think that part of the problem is that so many of the Kos Kidz came of political age during the Bush presidency that they have no experience seeing their side pilloried in the media, and they are finding this new experience uncomfortable. (Even though the New Yorker cover was actually aimed at us Wingnuts).

    Surely though, if they had any concept of irony the people who spent the last eight years indulging in the vilest and most vulgar demonization of their political opponents imaginable would hesitate before squeeling over being gently satired.

  11. Also, it seems that Maha is intent on proving those stereotypes do still apply.

  12. The new experience many of them find uncomfortable is hearing an opinion different from theirs expressed in a calm, articulate manner. It’s perfect that this group of dweebs came here to Austin, it’s their ultimate echo-chamber. People who live here truly believe that they are hunkered down in this oasis of enlightenment and that they are some kind of heroic figures standing firm against the rubes the drag their knuckles beyond the Austin borders.

  13. - #10 0 Exactly.

    – #11 – Beat me to it Karl. If he pulled his head out of his own ass more often he’d notice that because of inexperience and factors like #10, the Stereotypes are even more pronounced if anything.

    – #12 – Austin, the San Francisco or Portland of Texas.

  14. Wait a minute. San Francisco is the Austin of California, Portland the Austin of Oregon. And don’t mess with Texas, you wrapper-chucker you.

  15. “wrapper-chucker you.”

    – Ummm, I think you have Moi’ confused with feets. Hes the PW’er resident hostess cupcake go to guy, with a basement full of wrappers.

  16. Hey Austin is great for BBQ and the Butthole Surfers, but there are so many alleged “adults” here who are as politically mature as some dimwit in a freshman seminar with an anarchy sign spray painted on his jacket. I have a coworker who told me that “we need a leader who will inspire us to change our behavior.”

  17. Let’s see if I can translate what Maha-ha was trying to covey:

    1) Bush as stupid chimp, Michael Steele and Joe Leiberman in blackface, Condi Rice as Aunt Jemmima …

    Funny, Biting Political Satire

    2) Left Wing New Yorker Cover Cartoon, Left of Center Author says Pelosi D-Beijing, Krugman wearing Birkenstocks, skewering liberals as overly intellectual and humorless…

    Unfunny, mean right wing humor

    Is that … um clear … uh … now. ‘thuglicans?

    See “Self Fulfilling Prophesy.”

  18. Has Maha closed her comments yet?

  19. Shorter message to the Austin/American:

    YOU WILL BE ASSIMILATED. RESISTANCE IS FUTILE.

    And then Markos kicks his legs back and forth, back and forth, back and forth …

  20. I’m curious as to how you actually go about threatening a newspaper.

    * and even *

    Basically, you can’t threaten the newspaper. You can threaten not to invite the reporters to parties any more. That’s usually enough.

    Regards,
    Ric

  21. #Comment by Topsecretk9 on 7/22 @ 11:34 am #

    That was supposed to be ironic, right?

    Right?

  22. “…And then Markos kicks his legs back and forth, back and forth, back and forth…”

    – If he shut his mouth and just sat and kicked his legs I’m pretty sure his inexperienced candidate, who seems to already be in way over his head with no help from the Nutroots, would be most grateful.

  23. “Short People got – no reason to … Short People got – no reason to liiiiiiive!”

  24. - Speaking of Texas, looks like Brownsville and the surrounding counties, are about to say “Well hello Dolly”.

    – Hope Dolly’s bark is worse than her bite. Even if Shes down in wind strength a bit when she hits, they’re predicting up to 15 inches of rainfall, 6-8 foot surf surge along the coast, and winds of up to 115 mph gusts. The Governor has called for emergency preparations for 26 counties in the Brownsville area.

  25. JD-

    Has Maha closed her comments yet?

    Nobody has commented yet…(4:00 PM Eastern)

    Care to make it a “contest”? :o)

  26. Pingback: Vodkapundit » Netroots in Austin, with a Gore on top

  27. In order to fully appreciate the media double standard, read this story.

    The Bush Whitehouse vehemently objected to what they considered dishonest reportage by NBC News of Bush’s responses to some interview questions. Unlike the nutroots, the Bush administration did not ask for censorship. They only requested that NBC re-play the full interview segments (question and answer), so that viewers could judge Bush’s answers for themselves in the proper context. NBC responded:

    NBC News as part of a free press in a free society, makes its own editorial decisions

    In light of this incident it is interesting to see the media self-censoring at the request of the Left, not to avoid inaccuracy but to avoid hurting their feelings.

  28. BJTex-

    “Short People got – no reason to … Short People got – no reason to liiiiiiive!”

    ELIMINATIONIST!
    (As you can plainly see, as the first female on the left in this photo- I am among the most vertically challenged.)

    Thus, I am sure “Karl” will quickly close the comments on this thread to prevent my truth from being aired…

  29. Barb:

    I think you are taller than Markos and feisty to boot! I denounce myself for Heightism or Tallism or Shortaphobia or any other condition or bias. Your choice!

    Wasn’t that meeting well before President Clinton went batshit crazy? He doesn’t have that lovely reddish/pink hue that was so endearing during the primaries! :-)

    Ooops! Right Wing Humor Alert! Not even Mark Twain can find the truth in that! :-)

  30. There you go, a little humor from the Maha, whom I hope has discovered that Beach is hardly a member of the VRWC, just snarky about most people on the planet. It’s like a Rodney King moment, really.

  31. Ironically, I think that meeting is one of the first things I blogged here. And it wasn’t fixated on breasts, like Althouse’s coverage.

  32. wikipedia gives:

    “Mau Mau militants were also guilty of human rights violations, and many of the murders of which they were guilty were brutal in the extreme. More than 1,800 Kenyan civilians are known to have been murdered by Mau Mau, and hundreds more disappeared, their bodies never found.[23] Victims were often hacked to death with machetes.”

    Meanwhile, Kossacks write blog posts and send emails.

  33. The funny part is, I bet Greg Mitchell was appalled the Washington Post had the audacity to delete what’s his name? Pluk? and Co’s profanity laced temper tantrums off their blog.

  34. afall: You just don’t get Vast Right Wing Humor™ I’m afraid.

    We co-op oppressed others in all areas of comedy.

  35. Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1):

    mau-mau
    –verb (used with object) Slang. to terrorize, intimidate, or threaten.

    [Origin: 1970; coined by Tom Wolfe in Radical Chic and Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers; see Mau Mau]

    And of course it’s the radical chic angle that produces the use of “mau mau” as a verb to indicate intimidation, as in “we know people who run the paper,” etc.

  36. Comment by Topsecretk9 on 7/22 @ 2:33 pm #

    Hah, which I just remembered was ironically started because the nutroots wanted WAPO to delete the information that Harry Reid liked Abramoff money as much as republicans or something.

    Too funny.

  37. And given that afall seems a bit humor-challenged, there’s little point in noting the irony of dKos people calling themselves Kossacks.

  38. Barb,

    What you lack in height, you make up for in looking normal. As opposed to the motley crew in that picture who surround you. Yeesh, it looks like a casting call for the part of Gollum.

  39. GOLLUMNIST!!!!

  40. “afall: You just don’t get Vast Right Wing Humorâ„¢ I’m afraid.”

    Oh I thought it was funny. How far the radicals have fallen!

  41. Uh, that’s “Syndicated Gollumnist” please.

  42. Al: [rimshot]

  43. Crap. It only took one comment to idiodically blow my cover.

    We’ll need a pub post of the golf match from hell! I wish I could be there.

  44. Barb – That chick in the middle has nice ta ta’s. Just saying …

  45. We’ll need a pub post of the golf match from hell! I wish I could be there.

    What’s keeping you away, TWK? Elan won’t let you go?

  46. hundreds more disappeared, their bodies never found.

    (BURP)

  47. Karl

    Ironically, I think that meeting is one of the first things I blogged here. And it wasn’t fixated on breasts, like Althouse’s coverage.

    I first viewed this ‘controversy’ through the “Althouse” lens… Ms Althouse surely did not “fixate” on the breasts- her argument was that a “self-identified” ‘feminist’ was obviously throwing her boobs at a President who had already been “convicted” for his sexual proclivities- which the ‘feminist left’ had conveniently ignored despite their support of theories about the power disparities that occur in ‘work-place’ relatonships…

    Simply because Monica really wanted her “Presidential kneepads”…

  48. Fletch,

    Fair enough that it’s debatable whether Althouse was fixated on them in the sense that Billy Jeff likely was. The reference was mainly to remind people of the kerfuffle, and few things jog the memory like a lot of people talking about a woman’s breasts.

  49. wait, wait, I botched that…

    um, Knock, knock…

  50. maggie-

    wait, wait, I botched that…

    um, Knock, knock…

    Who’s there?

    “girls are dumm

    Girls are dumm who?

    Ask Maggie!

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