Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Hatchet-Job That Couldn't

Two weeks ago, Bob in LA posted about media slant in reporting on . . . well . . . everything. Bob gave particular prominence to press bias in articles about Glenn Beck's August 28th "nonpolitical" Washington rally dedicated to "Restoring Honor" to America. He linked to a Puffington Host report -- sans photo -- spotting a pamphlet supposedly depicting President Obama with a "Hitler-style mustache."

The online magazine Slate, owned by the Washington Post, has not been kind to "Tea Party" conservatives. In April, Slate writer Ron Rosenbaum asserted the Tea Party was founded on "fraudulent history and distorted language." Earlier this month, Slate Group editor-in-chief Jacob Weisberg described Tea Party types as advocating "anarchism." And David Weigel seriously debated whether they were "more angry or more gullible."

But reality much be catching up to Slate reporters. In Friday's Slate, Angela Tchou and David Weigel published "Tea Party Agitprop," a slide-show of "anti-Obama T-shirts and posters from this month's Tea Party protest in Washington." Though Slate seemingly would have the incentive to reproduce the most radical and/or racist photos, the 16 images were legitimate criticism mostly centered on the President's high-cost/low-return economic policies. None were remotely close to the standard "Bush-is-stupid," Bush-is-Hitler" nonsense that dominated progressive protests against the previous President. The most risque images in Slate's slide-show were variations on last-year's Obama "Joker" poster which, few remember, was created by a bored college history major, not a right-wing racist.

To be fair, Weigel previously concluded that Tea Party activists were not racists--sort of:
It's a phenomenon that some activists call "nutpicking"--send a cameraman into a protest and he'll focus on the craziest sign. Yes, there are racists in the Tea Party, and they make themselves known. But Tea Party activists usually root them out.
But if Tchou and Weigel's most recent post re-published "the craziest sign[s]," the Tea Party's not radical, or nutty, at all. Rather, that role is played by the mainstream media.

(via reader Warren, American Prospect)


A_Nonny_Mouse said...

Yes, but--

Last night on O'Reilly some leftwing black guy (Dr Mark Lamont Hill??) maintained that he had PROOF, by God, that the Tea Party was founded on racist beliefs and that racism (and racist signage) was prevalent at every Tea Party that's ever been held, and the fact that there are "4 African-American Tea Party members" isn't enough to prove us non-racist... etc,etc, drivel-drivel-drivel, yada,yada.

(I've seen him on O'Reilly before; he's an absolute motor-mouth jerk and when he shows up I change the channel -- so I can't tell you what O'Reilly's rebuttal may have been.)

In my not-too-humble opinion, such arrogant, chip-on-the-shoulder "you're racist, he's racist, everybody but me's racist" twits (this guy is the living definition of the concept "obnoxious") set race relations back a few decades every time they show up on an otherwise thoughtful news program.


A_Nonny_Mouse said...

I went off on a tirade, there...

My point was SUPPOSED to be that I've physically attended only one Tea Party event, but have seen video from dozens. I have not seen racism at all.

The signs I've seen at Tea Parties are almost universally policy-oriented, they don't attack individuals (well, except maybe Nancy Pelosi). The signs speak to what Obama & the Progressives are doing to the country; or they protest passing multi-thousand-page bills without reading them; or they decry the arrogant stance our Elected Ruling Class takes when they talk to and about We the People (aka The Rubes Who Elected Them).

This Hill guy, and anybody else who claims we're racist, can just go pound sand.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

The Tea Party could be a little more nuts without bothering me, actually.