Arriving online the morning after right-wing teabaggers sparked arrests, fights and mayhem at town hall meetings across the country, Noonan warns it's Democrats who are unleashing an "ugly" tone to the health care debate. It's Democrats who are being "unhelpfully divisive and provocative."
The column really is one of Noonan's worst, and most intellectually dishonest, in years, as she whole heartedly defends the mini-mobs and berates Democrats for having the nerve to push back rhetorically. Noonan ignores the death threats issued to at least one Congressman. She ignores that members of Congress now routinely have to be escorted to their cars by police after mini-mobs unleash their wrath.
For Noonan, the mob mentality is good. It's just democracy at work. It's just "concerned" citizens. It's just "democracy's great barbaric yawp."
In the wake of the violence unleashed at yesterday's town hall meetings, we'll see if Noonan backtracks, let alone apologizes for egging on the physical attacks; for legitimizing their brand of terror in the pages of the WSJ.
And oh yeah, Noonan lectures the White House that nobody in the administration--nobody--should be using Nazi references in the context of the health care debate. Ever. This, of course, one day after Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck both accused the White House of acting like Nazi's.
Noonan, of course, won't acknowledge that fact. She won't criticize Beck or Limbaugh and their "ugly" tone. Why? Because they now lead the conservative movement in America and formerly serious people like Peggy Noonan have to play along. And they have to play dumb.
Noonan has clearly mastered the latter.
UPDATED: Did I mention just how God-awful this Noonan column is?
And frankly they ought to think about backing off. The president should call in his troops and his Congress and announce a rethinking. There are too many different bills, they're all a thousand pages long, no one has time to read them, no one knows what's going to be in the final one, the public is agitated, the nation's in crisis, the timing is wrong, we'll turn to it again—but not now. We'll take a little longer, ponder every aspect, and make clear every complication.
According to Noonan, the White House should give into the mini-mobs and take health care reform off the table because a loud and increasingly violent minority number of demonstrators hate it. (The definition of mob rule, no?) Obama should try the initiative later when everyone will have cooled off. Because, presumably, in the future all the teabaggers will act civil and Fox News won't fear monger about the government killing old people. And critics will have time to read the legislation and things will be much more calm, and the country can have an informed debate about health care.
Can't wait for Noonan's next installment when she tells us about a must-see bridge that's for sale in Brooklyn.
From an August 9 Politico article:
Fox News host Glenn Beck joked on the air Thursday about poisoning House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, drawing a sharp rebuke from a liberal media watchdog group.
Riffing off a POLITICO report on Pelosi's upcoming Napa Valley event for big-dollar donors and other supporters, Beck did a sketch Thursday in which he pretended to be at the event, drinking wine with the speaker.
As a staffer wearing a Pelosi mask lifted a glass to her lips, Beck said:
"I really just really wanted to thank you having me over here to Wine Country, you know. To be invited, I thought I had to be a major Democratic donor, or a long-time friend of yours, which I'm not. By the way, I put poison in your - no. . . . "
At that point, Beck cut himself off and told the Pelosi doppelganger: "I look forward to all the policy discussions we're supposed to have - you know, on health care, energy reform and the economy. Hey, is that Sean Penn over there? I know it cost me more than $30,000 to get in here, but - Hey! Hey! I think I see Ed Markey, the author of cap and trade, over there."
A video of Beck's sketch was circulated Thursday evening by the watchdog group Media Matters for America.
In a statement, Media Matters President Eric Burns called Beck a "one-man hate machine" and said that "poisoning the House speaker in effigy is just the latest in a long line of actions, statements, and stunts that have no place on a credible news network."
Conservative organizations have encouraged opponents of Democratic health care proposals to go to lawmakers' public events and express their opposition, but these protests have taken on an increasingly nasty edge in recent days.
Rep. Brad Miller's (D-N.C.) office reportedly received a death threat against the congressman, and members of an overflow crowd at a Florida town hall banged on the doors and windows of a conference room when they were shut out of the event due to concerns about overcrowding. There were also reports in local newspapers of pushing and shoving at the event, which was held by Rep. Kathy Castor (D-Fla.)
I'm actually goofing on the loopy argument conservative media haters have been making for years, which is that consumers are reading fewer newspaper (and advertisers are buying fewer ad pages) because the product is so liberal; because newspapers turned their back on mainstream readers.
The holes in that argument are self-evident. (I'm pretty sure this thing called the Internet has a lot to do with newspapers' woes.) But it also doesn't hold water because guess what? Conservative publishers like Murdoch are also losing their shirts.
From the LA Times' report on Murdoch's News Corp. and its gruesome earnings report:
News Corp. had a brutal quarter ending June 30, as the company swung from $1.1 billion in net income a year ago to a net loss of $203 million...Print media wasn't too pretty either, however. News Corp.'s newspapers division reported a 63% drop in adjusted operating income to $96 million. That reflected significantly lower advertising revenue in the U.K., Australia, and from the U.S.-based Dow Jones group, which includes the Wall Street Journal.
Here's the punchline: Murdoch is now saying he's going to start charging a fee for online content to all his news sites. Because I guess he thinks people will pay to read the New York Post online.
Good luck with that.
Malkin took offense this week when I pointed out the obvious hypocrisy of right-wing bloggers like herself cheering the GOP mini-mobs which are trying to shut down town hall forums after Malkin and crew spent the last eight years denouncing any form of political protest.
In Malkin's world, protesters under Bush = "Moonbats"! Protesters under Obama = truth tellers.
Anyway, she took offense and claimed she only called out violent protesters under Bush. And who would possibly suggest today's GOP mini-mobs are violent? Um, well the office of Rep. Brad Miller (D-N.C.) would probably make that claim since the Congressman's life has been threatened by a mini-mob member.
Can't wait for Malkin to bring back the "Moonbat" tag to denounce violent, right-wing protesters...
Over at UN Dispatch, Mark Goldberg notices that John Bolton has been getting an awful lot of ink lately:
If you feel like you have been reading a lot of John Bolton recently, it's because you have. A Nexis search reveals that over the past 12 weeks, John Bolton has been published on the op-ed page of a major American publication nine times. That's three times in the Washington Post, once in the New York Times, once in The Los Angeles Times, twice in the Wall Street Journal and three in the Washington Times. This is an average of just under one op-ed a week, per week, for the last three months.
That means the Washington Post has been running a Bolton op-ed once a month. Way to give your readers a diversity of viewpoints...
From ColorofChange.org news release:
Three companies who run ads during Glenn Beck -- NexisLexis-owned Lawyers.com, Proctor & Gamble and Progressive Insurance -- today distanced themselves from Beck. LexisNexis has pulled its advertising from Beck and says it has no plans to advertise on the program in the future. Both Proctor & Gamble and Progressive Insurance called the Beck advertising placements an error that they would correct.
The decision by the three companies comes as over 45,000 ColorofChange.org members call on advertisers to pull their ads from Glenn Beck after the controversial news host called President Obama a "racist" who "has a deep-seated hatred for white people" on "Fox & Friends" last week.
"Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention," said John Michaels, Senior Communications Manager at LexisNexis in an email to ColorOfChange.org. "We have suspended further advertising during Mr. Beck's program."
He's soooo overexposed. (Ego much?) All the media elites think so.
And no, don't be silly, it's not the press that's overexposing Obama.
Why would you think that?
Next Thursday (August 6th), CNN's primetime schedule will feature a few changes from the usual evening line-up to commemorate the second 100 days of the Obama presidency.
At 8pmET, CNN will air "The CNN National Report Card: Second 100 Days" followed by Anderson Cooper at 10pmET. The two-hour "Report Card" special will reair at midnight and 4amET and will act as a sequel of sorts to the "First 100 Days" special CNN ran in April.
Here's Jonathan Martin's* item in full, where he seems to suggest there's an unfair connection being made by Democrats between birthers and those forming the health care mini-mobs [emphasis added]:
Senate Whip Dick Durbin, leaving the White House on message, says it directly:
"These town hall meetings have been orchestrated by the tea baggers and the birthers to just be a free-for-alls, make a lot of noise, go on YouTube and show discord," said Durbin. "I mean that is what they are determined to do. But that is not going to accomplish what we need to accomplish: real health care reform."
I suppose the only question is, what's the meaning of "orchestrated"? Because as Media Matters has clearly documented, right-wing media voices who have been central in pushing the birther nonsense have also been central in promoting--in orchestrating--the town hall mini-mobs: Sean Hannity, Lou Dobbs, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage. They all ran to the head of the birther line and now they're all running to the head of the mini-mob line.
In fact, on his radio show Wednesday, Savage and his delusional birther guest stressed how activists should use the town hall forms--how they should form mini-mobs--to drive the birther message. And let's not not forget that the current wave of birther mania was kick-started by a GOP mini-mob that hijacked a GOP town hall meeting in Delaware and turned it into a raucous birther rally.
*Politico's Martin wrote the "conflation" post at Ben Smith's blog and I originally attributed this item to Smith.
Not to be crude about this, but I wish Beck would grow a pair. This GOP Noise Machine schtick of unleashing unholy hell on the Obama White House, the way Beck and other non-stop hate merchant on the right do, and to then scurry around acting like he's seen a mouse whenever the White House actually pushes back on this stuff is just embarrassing.
If you're going to play an unhinged brand of hardball, than play it for crying out loud. Don't lob the bombs and then go hide behind Frank Luntz and whine about how nasty Democrats are. It's unsightly.