Patterico's Pontifications

8/16/2005

John Cole Defends the Indefensible (UPDATED)

Filed under: Blogging Matters,Current Events,Sheehan — Patterico @ 7:05 am



I’m disappointed in John Cole. His recent rant against Michelle Malkin defends the indefensible. He should know better.

Cole is upset that Malkin is discussing the fact that Pat Sheehan has filed for divorce from Cindy Sheehan. Cole thinks the divorce isn’t news. Malkin disagrees, and so does the AP. That’s fine. People are entitled to disagree about such issues.

But Cole has come completely unhinged on the topic, excusing nasty leftists’ personal and juvenile attacks on Malkin and her appearance. Cole’s raving on the subject is full of profanity, so I’ll tuck it into the extended entry for those of you who are offended by such talk:

No fucking shame. I don’t give a shit what even the nastiest folks on the left say about Malkin anymore. She brings this shit on herself, with vicious bullshit like this. No wonder she rushes to defend Karl Rove at every opportunity.

Let’s be very clear about what Cole is justifying here. The “even the nastiest folks” link is to a post by TBogg which mocks Malkin’s appearance, setting forth five photos of her and saying:

(Just a tip): Picture number four is her current professional headshot. Um, shoot it again and go for the “eyes are both the same size” look. You’re welcome.

Let me get this straight. Cole is saying that Malkin deserves to have people mock her appearance, because she has provided information about the Sheehan divorce filing, and has discussed its possible implications for the Cindy Sheehan story.

That is, quite simply, ridiculous.

Cole should not be defending TBogg or what he says about Malkin. From the little I have read of TBogg, he represents the worst our politics has to offer. He is nasty, vicious, and personal. As I told you here, he recently claimed that John Roberts and his wife adopted their children to “accessorize their public profiles.” His juvenile comments on Malkin’s appearance should be condemned — not justified.

By the way, TBogg attracts quite the crowd; one of his commenters refers to Malkin as “Ms. Malagalang-dong-my-dangalong-linglong.” Other TBogg commenters jump in with the racial theme, saying things like this: “I guess if I were on the low-cost Bangkok sex tour, and drunk enough, I might go for her, but by television standards, she’s doesn’t make the cut.” And this: “Me so Horney! Me love you Long Time!”

I assume that, when Cole says that he doesn’t care what “even the nastiest folks on the left” say about Malkin, he is not referring to racist bilge like that. My assumption is bolstered by the fact that Cole lectures some of his own readers on racist comments in an update. But Cole should clearly admit that he was wrong to suggest that Malkin is asking for the worst she gets from the left. When he says things like that, it should come as no surprise that the “nastiest folks on the left” are going to take that as encouragement to leave racist comments.

Cole’s rant is proof that so-called “moderates” can get just as drunk on their own self-righteousness as any member of the left or right wing. Next time he gets this angry, he ought to give himself a self-imposed time-out of a few hours before posting.

UPDATE: Cole has apologized here. It’s a classy, no-holds-barred apology. Kudos to him.

84 Responses to “John Cole Defends the Indefensible (UPDATED)”

  1. What Cole either may not know or care is that by this support of “even the nastiest folks”, he to some extent identifies himself as one of them. No problem, of course, if that’s what you are and you don’t mind.

    Just don’t act surprised if others decide they’re less than fond of the company you decide to keep.

    Scriptfox (8a382d)

  2. People change their minds. Some even change their names to something more anglo, like Malkin.

    actus (a5f574)

  3. Trying to reason with the unreasonable is futile. Extremists on both sides of the spectrum are devoid of reason and as a result, we are all best served by not wasting energy or time engaging them in debate.

    Ignore all who froth at the mouth, for they are rabid. The unkindest “cut” of all is to assure one that he is not even worthy of your disgust.

    rayabacus (0516f0)

  4. People change their minds. Some even change their names to something more anglo, like Malkin.

    Time honored tradition when women marry that they take their husband’s last name. Any more bon mots?

    rayabacus (0516f0)

  5. “Time honored tradition when women marry that they take their husband’s last name.”

    see. no surprise.

    actus (a5f574)

  6. Actus,

    If you can speak in anything but cryptic hit-and-run single-sentence comments, make your argument about Malkin’s name and why it’s relevant to 1) this post or 2) anything at all. Otherwise I’m going to start deleting your comments on the issue.

    Patterico (0d1b2d)

  7. Your post raises many good points. Although I tend to agree with Cole, I also believe that if Sheehan’s divorce is related to her views on Iraq it most certainly IS fair game since it invalidates her many claims of family support. Furthermore, every other major news agency is reporting on it.

    Unfortunately John Cole completely misses the mark with his post because of the way he said it. It sounds like it was written by a drunk teenager who is angry at his girlfriend. LOL.

    MisterPundit (17db6d)

  8. I am disappointed in Michelle Malkin, because she continues to pretend that all she did was ‘just report news.’

    Of course it is in the public domain that Cindy Sheehan is having marital problems- it has been known for months that she has been separated from her husband.

    But what Michelle has done is take the divorce filing, absent a statement from her husband, and is attempting to use it to discredit Cindy Sheehan. It is the sort of thing we shouldn’t stoop to, and that is the intent of this statement:

    Assuming this report pans out, it will be interesting to see if Cindy Sheehan continues to insist that she and her husband “are on the same side of the fence” with respect to her anti-war activism.

    Cindy Sheehan’s divorce is irrelevant to the real issue, and that is her bizarre, outrageous, and indefensible statements, including her appearance on Hardball last night:

    MATTHEWS: Can I ask you a tough question? A very tough question.

    SHEEHAN: Yes.

    MATTHEWS: All right. If your son had been killed in Afghanistan, would you have a different feeling?

    SHEEHAN: I don`t think so, Chris, because I believe that Afghanistan is almost the same thing. We`re fighting terrorism. Or terrorists, we`re saying. But they`re not contained in a country. This is an ideology and not an enemy. And we know that Iraq, Iraq had no terrorism. They were no threat to the United States of America.

    MATTHEWS: But Afghanistan was harboring, the Taliban was harboring al Qaeda which is the group that attacked us on 9/11.

    SHEEHAN: Well then we should have gone after al Qaeda and maybe not after the country of Afghanistan.

    That, her numerous PNAC/War For Oil statements, the shady backgrounds and actions of those groups supporting her, and the actions of those rushing to canonize her solely as a vehicle of short-term partisan gain should be the focus of our attention.

    Not, as some think, her relationship. It should be out of bounds, even if it is ‘news.’

    And I do not defend or justify what total jerks like TBOGG (who I think does ably represent the nastiest aspect of the angry left- you did see what he did to Erick Erickson last week) say, I say that I understand why they say it. In other words, she brings it on herself.

    John Cole (c1ed69)

  9. The divorce is relevant insofar as Sheehan is claiming that she speaks for her honorable son Casey or his family. To the extent Sheehan is using this new hobby of hers to overcome her grief, I don’t have much of a problem with it. To the extent Sheehan is using this to convince the world that the US is weak and enemies of the US are making progress in breaking the will of the US public, her actions are despicable. It is difficult to believe Casey would have approved of his mommy undermining the US Army like this.

    Shredstar (e73f56)

  10. But officer, she deserved to be raped! Look at the way she was dressed!

    Dan S (d281eb)

  11. One shouldn’t easily introduce such a personal thing as divorce into a news story, but Sheehan is trading in family connections, so it is relevant to some degree. If she were an equally visible anti-war protester who wasn’t highlighting the fact that her son was killed in Iraq, her husband’s filing for divorce would clearly be of no interest. Since her husband is going through the same ordeal that she is, his views, or apparent views, are seen as relevant.

    Brian O'Connell (69c9fc)

  12. Sorry, someone got in before my comment. That was aimed at John Cole’s posting.

    Dan S (d281eb)

  13. According to Cindy’s own site:

    “t r u t h o u t | One Mother’s Stand
    By William Rivers Pitt

    Thursday 11 August 2005
    8:05 PM

    I spoke to Cindy about the “so-called” family who attacked her today. This godmother, according to Cindy, did not know Casey at all. They saw each other maybe once a year. As for the other family members, they have always been at political loggerheads, so their response is no big shock.

    Cindy treated it with a shrug. Her husband will send out a more detailed response soon. In the meantime, Cindy says the letter is to be treated as little more than bad, dumb noise.

    The vigil goes on.”

    Cindy touted her hubbie as a loyal soldier for the cause – she was the one who dragged him into this, and on so doing made the subject of their divorce directly relevant. Hence the AP article et al.

    I used to really enjoy Balloon Juice, but took it off my favorites list when I read Cole’s Malkin post yesterday. It’s a shame.

    Scott (57c0cc)

  14. She could be divorced ten times, a hooker, half two wives, etc., and she will still be banking on the only relationship that counts- she is Casey’s mother.

    And so what? What matters is she is stark, raving mad, at least as her political positions go.

    John Cole (c1ed69)

  15. Cole’s rant is proof that so-called “moderates” can get just as drunk on their own self-righteousness as any member of the left or right wing.

    It’s my experience that self-proclaimed moderates are the most likely to “get drunk on their own self-righteousness”.

    Robert Crawford (aa888e)

  16. Mine, too. It seems to be a natural side effect of the artificial construction that is the left/right spectrum, coupled with the not-exactly-value-neutral term “moderate” we apply to those in the middle. I don’t know anyone at either end of the political spectrum who pats himself on the back and says “Gee whiz, if everyone but me thinks I’m a stark raving made far-right [or left] winger, I must really be on to something!” Yet self-described moderates draw an equally inane conclusion all the time.

    Xrlq (6c76c4)

  17. So, if you judge a blog by its comments you’ll be delinking Little Green Footballs asap, right?

    Yeah. I didn’t think so.

    As far as Ms. Malkin’s headshot goes, trust me, I came out of the marketing business and that is one terrible shot. She’s a nice looking lady and that picture should have never left the contact sheet.

    Anything else I can help you with?

    tbogg (6b268b)

  18. […] Patterico states I was over the line condemning Malkin’s post, and he is right. So: […]

    Balloon Juice (c62e7c)

  19. From the little I have read of TBogg, he represents the worst our politics has to offer.

    Worse than Coulter? Worse than Savage?

    Mike S (f8126f)

  20. I’m actually not happy with attacks on Sheehan. To me she appears to be a woman overcome with gief who’s been fed a line of propoganda by some VERY unsavory characters who are using her for their own ends. If anyone needs to be investigated it’s the folks that are behind this abuse.

    Kevin Murphy (9982dd)

  21. “Anything else I can help you with? ”

    Sure. When you ran for Governor of LA, was the negative publicity personally painful, or did you just chalk it up to hardball politics?

    A (18129f)

  22. Mr. Cole – Interesting that you don’t see fit to include this last exchange between Sheehan and Chris Matthews on Hardball:

    “MATTHEWS: … Let me ask you about your situation. Cindy, this is a tricky situation. Every time a family has a tragedy and the loss of a son, your oldest, must be unimaginable.

    Sometimes husbands and wives grieve in very different ways and it often leads to separation and divorce. Is that what has happened between and you your husband? Or is this a partisan fight that we’re seeing in the open that’s behind us? The separation and divorce of you and your husband?

    SHEEHAN: My husband has always agreed with me philosophically. And he only disagreed with the intensity that I put into the fight. But I am compelled to do this. And other than that, that’s as far as I’m going to talk about my family’s — another personal tragedy due to this war.”

    [Emphasis added]

    It is fair to interpret that statement as suggesting that Sheehan blames her divorce on Bush & Israel. If that is the case, then it seems to me that discussion about her divorce and the reasons behind it is entirely relevant.

    Justin Levine (f341b1)

  23. Malkin has a long history of endorsing racism and collaborating with white supremacists, so boo freaking hoo.

    She’s a vile, intellectually dishonest scumbucket.

    Geek, Esq. (5dd2be)

  24. Worse than Coulter? Worse than Savage?

    I’m not fans of theirs either.

    Patterico (cc4bfa)

  25. Patterico, John Cole apologised, and linked this post, which is very classy of him.

    Unfortunately the dregs of humanity that hang out in the comments section at Balloon Juice is sure to follow. In fact, I see some of them have already arrived. You may want to take an extra shower tonight, and remember, nothing says “I’m stupid” quite like “boo freaking hoo”.

    MisterPundit (17db6d)

  26. Ah yes, the ad hominem comes out when people are unwilling to, as the phrase goes, defend the indefensible (Malkin being the indefensible).

    Geek, Esq. (5dd2be)

  27. MisterPundit:

    I have already done the update linking his apology, which I agree was very classy and not at all Durbinesque.

    Patterico (cc4bfa)

  28. Ah yes, the ad hominem comes out when people are unwilling to, as the phrase goes, defend the indefensible (Malkin being the indefensible).

    Geek:

    I’d feel sorry for your having to endure ad hominem attacks — if you hadn’t, just three comments previously, said: “She’s a vile, intellectually dishonest scumbucket.”

    Patterico (cc4bfa)

  29. Oh, I don’t expect any sympathy. I just find it amusing that people on the right prefer to resort to that tactic rather than defending Malkin’s record.

    Of course, you yourself made similar comments about a liberal blogger, so rubber, glue, etc etc.

    Geek, Esq. (5dd2be)

  30. She’s a vile, intellectually dishonest scumbucket.

    I’ve seen the effluvia of the J.D. Geek on several blogs for some months, and he/she is getting moonbattier the longer Dubya clings to office. Straightjacket time should arrive in early ’07.

    More to the point, John Cole was wrong to erupt. Ms. Sheehan has gladly made herself a public figure, and public records on public figures can be part of the Big Picture.

    Cordially…

    Rick (e7f4fe)

  31. For those keeping score:

    Conservatives responding to criticism of Malkin with insults: 2

    Conservatives responding to criticism of Malkin by defending her endorsement of racism and collaboration with White Supremacists: 0

    Geek, Esq. (5dd2be)

  32. I have already done the update linking his apology, which I agree was very classy and not at all Durbinesque.

    Bah! I see that now. Cheers mate.

    MisterPundit (17db6d)

  33. The problem as I see it is that people like Malkin are the darlings of much of the right. She has used her own vitriol and baseless attacks, yet whines when she receives the same. Her book advocating racist practices was easily debunked, her claim that Kerry shot himself was disgusting and her happiness that her readers got an a-hole fired for an E-mail to her is reprehencible.

    I have taken people on my side to task for their dispicable comments on many occasions. That is a rare occasion on the right at best.

    Mike S (f8126f)

  34. This whole thing is nuts. The guy who is charged with trying to drive through the crosses was the last straw: Sheesh! The story jumped the shark. Let’s all drop it before someone gets hurt

    Don Surber (f7ace7)

  35. In case you’re keeping score:

    Number of persons responding to criticisms of Geek with insults – 1.

    Number of persons responding to criticisms of Geek by defending his illogic and immaturity – 0.

    eddie haskell (8fd1a1)

  36. And the score is 3-0!

    Geek, Esq. (5dd2be)

  37. The title of the NY Times report on the “driving through crosses” incidnet is precious: “Memorial to Troops Killed in Iraq Is Vandalized in Texas“. Like the people who put it up care one whit about the troops one moment longer than they are convenient talking points.

    Kevin Murphy (9982dd)

  38. Well, someone has to defend Michelle on substance so I guess it’s me. Michelle’s book (1) does not defend racism, and (2) was not debunked in any sense of the word. On the contrary, Michelle’s book argues that the internment was not racist in the first place.

    I think it speaks well for her book that so many people have given up trying to attack it on substantive grounds and instead prefer to just lie and say that it defends racism. They can’t win the argument so they try to just win by screaming “racism” –an old and contemptible lefist tactic.

    Malkin also has no history of defending racism nor of collaborating with white supremists. Geek is a liar. Rather, she fights against that contemptible racial tactic. And quite effectively –that is the real reason the Left hates her so much.

    Doc Rampage (2b9fb5)

  39. Malkins book debunked.

    It speaks volumes of the right that they would not only deny that it was debunked but that they would defend internment and not call it racism. It also speaks volumes about the New Republican Party and how far they have moved away from their supposed patron saint, Ronald Reagan.

    But that’s just the “contemptable tactic” of the new Repyblican Party. Almost no honor left.

    Mike S (f8126f)

  40. “But that’s just the “contemptable tactic” of the new Repyblican Party. Almost no honor left.”

    ZZZZzzzzzzzz….

    MisterPundit (17db6d)

  41. Mike S, Doc Rampage:

    What we have here is failure to communicate.

    I disagree with Malkin to the extent I think it obvious that there was a fanatical, almost farcical (if it didn’t have tragic consequences) hatred of people of Japanese descent following Pearl Harbor; just look at their portrayal in Hollywood. The corresponding hatred of everyone of German descent (such as some fellow named “iron hewer”) was miniscule by comparison — and selectively applied.

    As Larry Elderberry would say, however, “here comes the big butt”:

    Hatred of Japanese people is not racism, because, as much as they may have imagined it at the time (or even today), the Japanese are not a separate race.

    They are the same race, as that word has always been understood, as the Chinese, Vietnamese, Koreans, Filippinos, Laotians, Cambodians, Tibetans, and so forth: they are all Oriental, as my Japanese wife prefers, or Asian, the more PC term. The fact is that near-maniacal hatred of anyone of Japanese descent was not matched by hatred of these other groups… which proves it was not racism.

    It was certainly bigotry; contrary to Malkin’s claims — I didn’t read her book but I read many of her columns defending it — contrary to her claims, there simply was no evidence that Japanese gardeners in Irvine were actually spies or saboteurs. Nor was there any attempt to find out whether a particular person was a threat; once it was determined that he was of Japanese descent, he was rounded up and sent to Manzanar.

    It would be exactly the same as if, following 9/11, we rounded up John Zogby, Dweezel and Moon Unit Zappa, and Spencer Abraham and shipped them all to Gitmo.

    If folks want to attack the rationality of detaining every Yumi, Yoko, and Yoshi behind iron bars and barbed wire, just in case they may receive instructions over the wireless directly from Tojo, then please call the charge what it is: bigotry, irrationality, wartime hysteria. But it’s not racism; Humpty Dumpty’s pronouncement to Alice notwithstanding, words have meanings.

    I’m done.

    Dafydd

    Dafydd (f8a7be)

  42. Myself:

    Actually, Zappa might be a Greek name. But I understand your point.

    Dafydd

    Dafydd (f8a7be)

  43. Malkin’s book is irrelevant. I haven’t read it and don’t intend to. I think its worth pointing out that if her book, as I’ve read, defends the WWII internment of Japanese Americans, and that makes her a racist, then FDR must have been a racist also since, well…it was his policy.

    Thus the danger of retroactively applying today’s morality to other times. I’ve been reading a lot of that drivel lately in regards to the nuclear attacks on Japan.

    Nor am I a fan of Malkin’s columns – to me she is too shrill, as is Molly Ivins. However when people on the left – known for calling Malkin an affirmative action hire with tits, etc – make charges of racism…well let’s just say I think they need to take a look at their own incipient racism.

    I don’t know why Mr. Cole got so worked up over the Sheehan divorce post. Maybe he was just having a bad day. The Sheehan divorce is in just about every paper in the country today. /shrug. Sheehan made herself a public figure and that’s what happens to public figures.

    I hope she goes home and gets some grief counseling myself.

    Dwilkers (a1687a)

  44. Doc Rampage:

    Have you ever checked out main contributors to and operators of vdare.com? Do you know the history of her publisher? If so, you wouldn’t be so adamant in denying she collaborates with white supremacists.

    And, saying that the internment of Japanese citizens wasn’t based on racism is like saying that slavery and Jim Crow wasn’t based on racism. You call ME the liar? Dear lord, Malkin’s entire book is a giant fat lie in defense of the indefensible.

    Geek, Esq. (2d4a7b)

  45. Gee Geek,

    As refutation of Malkin’s book you cite a guy who hadn’t even read it. I’m surprised he just didn’t say, “Judging by the cover, we can dismiss it as revisionist gook history.”

    Meanwhile David Duke is endorsing Cindy Sheehan without raising an eyebrow on the left.

    George Turner (21a671)

  46. I am not a Michelle Malkin fan. I think she takes conservatism too far. But I do not like to see anybody beat up on ladies, even if only verbally, either. Also, I like to mock and tease as much as anyone on the internet but I do not agree with profanity or name-calling.

    nk (57e995)

  47. For refutations of Malkin’s book look here:

    An 11 part series on isthatlegal.org:
    http://www.isthatlegal.org/Muller_and_Robinson_on_Malkin.html

    and a more recent post on a differant blog:
    http://coldfury.com/reason/?p=875

    The series on isthatlegal is the most effective dismantling of a book on a historical topic I’ve ever seen. Malkin’s book apparently makes Thomas Woods confererate-advocacy work look fair and balanced.

    Chrispy (455942)

  48. Dafydd, your claim that the hatred of ethnic Japanese was not racist because it was not matched by hatred of ethnic Chinese etc. is not convincing. We were not at war with China etc. so the situations are not comparable. On the other hand as you note we were at war with Germany but there was no similar hatred of ethnic Germans. Obviously the internment of the Japanese was not solely due to racism, the fact that we were at war with Japan contributed. But this does not mean that racism had nothing to do with it.

    If blacks suspected of rape are lynched while whites suspected of rape are not lynched, claims that this is racist are not refuted by observing other blacks who are not suspected of rape are not lynched.

    James B. Shearer (fc887e)

  49. The most important reason people were paranoid about the Japanese, but only those on the coast, and weren’t worried about all the German or Italian Americans, is that Germany and Italy didn’t have a naval fleet that could conceivably pull off an invasion. The Japanese Navy was doing that routinely throughout the Pacific.

    George Turner (21a671)

  50. Some even change their names to something more anglo, like Malkin.

    Huh? What gave you the idea that Malkin is an anglo name?

    Milhouse (dcec4f)

  51. James B. Shearer:

    Hm, how to put this tactfully? Dude, you have so completely misunderstood my point, I may as well have been speaking in Mandarin.

    “Racism” means irrationally ascribing character qualities to people on the basis of their races. That’s why it’s called racism, as opposed to, say, national chauvinism or ethnocentrism. (The generic term for overemphasis or obsession with racial origin is “racialism.”)

    “Race,” as used in racialism, racism, and so forth, is by and large synonymous with color — not of the individual but the symbolic color associated with the race: thus, your analogy of blacks being lynched is comically absurd, since blacks are a distinct race, of course — as are whites. So are Hispanics (symbolic color: brown), American Indians (symbolic color: red), and Asians (symbolic color: yellow)… and that’s pretty much it. These are not literal colors; “whites” are not the color of paper, and “blacks” are not the color of a telephone. The color is purely symbolic.

    (Some might separate out Near-East Asians as a race distinct from Far-East Asians; NEAs would include Arabs, Persians, Paks, East Indians, and such; I don’t know what the symbolic-color difference would be. But “Yemeni” would not be a separate race, nor would “Pashtun” — the first is a nationality, the second a tribe.)

    Thus, a person with an irrational hatred of all blacks is a racist (or more precisely, a racial bigot); but a person with an irrational hatred of all Slavs, but not other Caucasians, is not a racial bigot, even though it is just as irrational as hatred of all blacks. Slavs, Nords, Greeks, and Sicilians are all white, no matter how different they look… just as Somalis, Tutsis, and Masai are all black, despite being just as distinct-looking as the whites listed above.

    If a person irrationally hates all Japanese but not all Chinese, then he is not a racial bigot. Likewise a person who irrationally loves all Japanese but is indifferent to Koreans. But a person who irrationally loves or hates all Asians is a racial bigot.

    That is my only point. The word “racism” (and its fellows) cannot be stretched to include irrational hatred of merely one segment of a race, but normal reactions to all other segments of that same race. Irrational, bigotted, tribalist, chauvinist, ethnocentrist, and despicable as it may be, it’s not the specific sin of racism. That word means something else.

    Is my point clearer now?

    Once passing the threshold of the definition of “race,” you have to distinguish between racialism, racism, racial discrimination, racial bigotry, racial supremacy, and racial separatism:

    Racialism: overemphasis on or obsession with racial origins. E.g., Robert E. Howard was a racialist but not necessarily a racist. (One can be obsessed with race without believing one race is any better or worse, in the grand scheme of things, than any other.)

    Racism: the belief that there are significant heirarchical differences in the content of one’s character directly linked to the color of one’s skin… in other words, that some races are “better” than others.

    Racial discrimination: treating people differently on the basis of race. (Subdefinition: Racial segregation is the allocation of certain areas, positions, or services on the basis of race.)

    Racial bigotry: irrational like or dislike of one or more particular races.

    Racial supremacy: the belief that some races should be treated better than others or that one or more races should rule over the others.

    Racial separatism: the desire to separate people strictly according to race.

    You can, of course, mix and match here. A person who believes the races should be separated but does not believe any one is better than any other is a racial separatist but not a racist. A person who believes all races should be treated equally but is confident the natural superiority of the Asians will cause them to rise to the top is a racist but not racially discriminatory or separatist, and so forth.

    I am simply talking about diction here, James; I am certainly not defending any irrational beliefs.

    Dafydd

    Dafydd (f8a7be)

  52. James B. Shearer:

    (If you haven’t already guessed, one of my own obsessions is with word usage!)

    Dafydd

    Dafydd (f8a7be)

  53. #47 is a hoot! That alleged demolition by “coldfury” is a mere foot-stamping/spoon-banging bitch. Malkin is reeling.

    She also parries the Muller and Robinson criticisms.

    But hey, I’m not going to enthuse too much over the progressive policies of FDR and Earl Warren after Pearl Harbor. I leave that to the shrill affirmative action author.

    Cordially…

    Rick (e7f4fe)

  54. I’m just curious who among the Malkin critics here has actually read her book on internment.

    I’m not interested in your various and predictable explanations as to why you don’t need to read it to criticize it as an obvious work of racism. I also predict my lack of interest in such responses won’t prevent them from being articulated.

    I just want to know: have any of you actually read the thing?

    Patterico (242e62)

  55. The real issue raised by Malkin is that of racial profiling in times of heightened national security.

    You can dismiss it as racism if you want; if you believe that any race-based policy is inherently wrong, then you must disagree with Malkin – on principle (of course for your principle to be valid, you must also be against affirmative action in all of its guises).

    I am not comfortable ending the discussion there. I believe that in times of heightened national threat, and with less than omniscient law enforcement agencies, it is worthwhile to look at established probabilities.

    Insurance, financial, marketing and other analysts rely on trends based on everything from race to age to gender to religion to chart a course for businesses worldwide – show me a successful business that did not rely on these and I’ll show you someone with a few bridges and swampland lots for sale.

    So why shouldn’t the same basic paradigm be factored into something as critical as security, where success is measured in lives saved rather than dollars earned?

    Scott (57c0cc)

  56. Geek –

    The point of my comment was that your tactic – (1) characterizing Malkin in a certain way, (2) demanding that people who do not agree with that characterization accept it and defend Malkin based on that characterization, then (3) citing their unwillingess to do so – proves nothing.

    You know, just like the fact that you are unwilling to accept my description of you as illogical and immature, and to defend your illogic and immaturity, doesn’t prove that you accept my description as correct. Get it?

    eddie haskell (8fd1a1)

  57. Lots of info here;
    Patterico,I wrote a note to John Cole warning him of not being trapped into defending his defenders.I think that was part of his problem.His apology seems sincere.
    Mike S.-I haven’t read Malkin’s book: I wonder if you have?You don’t strike me as someone who has any math background ,but in terms of Boolean(symbolic) logic,your statement is content free.
    I think Kevin Murphy is correct(#20) about Mrs .Sheehan’s entourage.She seem to be operating on the “my enemy’s enemy ” principle.Regardless,it’s
    become a freak show and an increasingly morbid one.
    Doc Rampage(#41); I agree with you hatred of Japanese per se’ is not racism,but it may be a first approximation-a term from diff. eqs. that Mike S. can doubtless explain-for a hatred of Oriental’s.
    #50)Malkin took her husband’s name when they were married.
    Finally,Patterico,I feel people like you make this a better country and keep me examining my own
    views for bias.
    Lincoln

    lincoln (d14e5c)

  58. “As far as Ms. Malkin’s headshot goes, trust me, I came out of the marketing business and that is one terrible shot. She’s a nice looking lady and that picture should have never left the contact sheet.”

    Trying to pretend you were only criticizing her photographer is just pathetic. You were scoring cheap points capering for your “Malagalang” crowd, and you know it.

    Scott (57c0cc)

  59. Dayfdd, you are missing my point. The character quality being (let’s stipulate) irrationally ascribed to Asians is “Asian Americans are less likely than white Americans to be loyal when the US is at war with their native countries”. So due to this racist belief when the US was at war with Japan and Germany, Japanese-Americans were interned while German-Americans were not.

    The greater hatred of Japanese than of other Asians was a product of WWII and diminishes as we move away from that time period. If China had been our enemy in WWII it is likely that Chinese-Americans would have been interned.

    James B. Shearer (fc887e)

  60. “So due to this racist belief when the US was at war with Japan and Germany, Japanese-Americans were interned while German-Americans were not.”

    One possible reason for why only Japanese-Americans were interned could be that it was relatively easy to focus on Asians (distinctively non-anglo appearance & names), and weed out the Chinese, Thai etc until you’re left with just Japanese.

    Whereas German-Americans were much more numerous, much more deeply integrated into society, and visually homogenous with the majority (they were arguably so integrated that they really were part of the majority).

    i.e. it had at least as much to do with expediency as it did with racism.

    Scott (57c0cc)

  61. Scot: Many German Americans and Italian Americans _were_ interned. And actually, there was a lot of anti-German sentiment. That’s just a tiny bit of the many surprising facts that Malkin presents in her book.

    Dafydd: Irrational hatred may have existed, but it was by no means a majority view, nor was it shared by the people who decided to relocate the Japanese in the sensitive areas, as Malkin shows by presenting some of their correspondence.

    Also, you wrote “I didn’t read her book but I read many of her columns defending it — contrary to her claims, there simply was no evidence that Japanese gardeners in Irvine were actually spies or saboteurs.” If you haven’t read her book to see what evidence she provides then you have no business saying that there is no evidence.

    Geek: First, having an organization pick up your column is not the same as collaborating with that organization. Second, I don’t know anything about Vdare but I’m certainly not going to take you word for it that they are racist. In fact, you don’t even have enough credibility to make me want to investigate the issue. You have lied about Malkin; I assume you would lie about Vdare.

    Doc Rampage (47be8d)

  62. “Scot: Many German Americans and Italian Americans _were_ interned. And actually, there was a lot of anti-German sentiment. That’s just a tiny bit of the many surprising facts that Malkin presents in her book.”

    That’s what I get for taking someone else’s comments as a given – I stand corrected (although I don’t remember hearing there were so many German and Italian internees that camps were needed for them?).

    Scott (57c0cc)

  63. John Cole is no moderate and his apology is a smokescreen. I posted a comment in response to his Malkin tirade and it was “moderated” out of the comments section of his blog. He has a right to censor his detractors since it’s his blog, but the fact that all of the vulgar, racist, leftist invective did not get censored suggests that they were in keeping w/his worldview–in the way that dissention is not.

    Cali Thinker (7c550e)

  64. Agreed – it reminds me a bit of Sullivan’s political drift that ended up on the hard left. Hope it doesn’t go that far but you have to wonder, esp when you see other things like this:

    “None of this mitigates the blunder by the WH by not just simply meeting with her immediately and being done with the whole ordeal”

    Scott (57c0cc)

  65. Cali Thinker writes:

    John Cole is no moderate and his apology is a smokescreen. I posted a comment in response to his Malkin tirade and it was “moderated” out of the comments section of his blog. He has a right to censor his detractors since it’s his blog, but the fact that all of the vulgar, racist, leftist invective did not get censored suggests that they were in keeping w/his worldview–in the way that dissention is not.

    A.) I never deleted your comment. I use wordpress, and as that was the first time you have ever come to my site and commented (and apparently the last), the comment went into the moderation cue, where it waited for me to approve it. As the comment was made at 1 am, it probably didn’t get approved until the next morning, but it is there. See for yourself:

    Get a grip. Your adolescent response to Michele Malkin’s comments is so unbelievably irrational that you sound like an islamic nutball who decides to kill his teenage daughter b/c she is rumored to no longer be a virgin.

    You can apologize whenever, but clearly you are not being ‘censored.’

    B.) That thread attracted an enormous number of trolls, and I went through and actually did censor all of the ones with racist content. IN other words, not only did I not censor you, but I censored the people you claim I have given free reign.

    C.) I never in any way condoned the racist nonsense launched against Michelle, I said I understand why some people go over the top and say nasty things about her.

    D.) Regardless, it was Michelle who dishonestly lumped my profanity laced tirade against her in with people who make racist comments. And, again today, she has done the same thing, even after ackowledging, via email, my apology.

    You have the basic facts wrong, you have the entire story wrong, and Michelle today is lumping me in with a bunch of bigots- something you seem to think is perfectly acceptable.

    Again, feel free to apologize whenever.

    John Cole (ffc0f8)

  66. I’ll echo much of what John says, but disagree as to his characterization of Michelle’s post as “dishonest[].”

    1) WordPress puts a lot of comments into moderation. It’s great for fighting spam. That’s clearly what happened with Cali Thinker’s comment.

    2) It was clear to me that John had censored a number of racist comments on his site. Good for him.

    3) Nor has he condoned any racism.

    4) Michelle has not been dishonest. She has linked this post to the word “ridicule” to describe some of the ridicule she has received. This post shows that Cole apologized, and that he is no racist. I don’t see what’s dishonest about her post, at all.

    As to the “lumping in” — she listed a number of people who have heaped abuse and ridicule on her. This post describes some of the ridicule.

    Patterico (9dca3b)

  67. Amidst the discussion of what is/isn’t racism, I think it’s worth saying that in the real world the distinction is never so fine.

    Distinguishing hatred of (for example) the Japanese during WWII from racism is specious – each was the chicken to the other’s egg. There were rationally based arguments for internment, and racist arguments for the same. Look back through history, they will never be separable.

    biwah (f5ca22)

  68. Malkin deserves to be driven from public discourse by an legal means possible, so, yes, let’s mock her eyes.

    Nick Danger (707077)

  69. “They are the same race, as that word has always been understood…”

    Jeez, you’ve never heard of “the English race” or “the French race”? The word has been used like that all the time!

    Nick Danger (707077)

  70. [I am a complete and utter moron with no idea what is appropriate commentary for a blog. Love, “Skippy-san.”]

    Skippy-san (10c0c5)

  71. So here is the question: What does any of the smears on Cindy Sheehan have to do with her war protest? Answer: Nothing. Its just the newly excepted right wing Rove reflex: Attack, smear, distract, discredit, and this scumbag gang pretending to be an American administration have managed to drag politics to new lows. Do we need to review how low, what with the little breach of national security investigation going on for 2 years? Malkin is nothing more than a Rove like attack dog without the slightest bit of class or talent. Maybe you right wingers should start noticing the huge scandals on the horizon, billions stolen directly from the National Treasury might be a start. Not one mention of it on Malkins pathetic website, OR the Rove/Libby leak for that matter. Partisan hacks is all you people are.

    BlackBelt (03ab28)

  72. So here is the question: What does any of the smears on Cindy Sheehan have to do with her war protest? Answer: Nothing.

    Calling something a “smear” implies it’s not true. Rather than angrily tap-tap-tapping your outrage on a keyboard, do you have a specific complaint that a specific accusation re Sheehan by a specific person is untrue? If so, let’s hear it. If not, stop boring us.

    Patterico (756436)

  73. Patterico, there’s too many ridiculous smears against Sheehan to bother laying out line by line. Dismissing every complaint for lack of detail is akin to the Dems opposing every nominee for lack of some records somewhere.

    For starters, here are the most common smears. Where are they coming from? Basically everywhere:

    Anti-semite

    Media whore

    Nutbag

    America-hater

    Where is the evidence? Does your vacaville reporter article prove it all? I would humbly submit that it doesn’t prove, or even tend to prove, any of these smears.

    What about the guilt-by-association tactics regarding various supposed supporters?

    So,

    1. There is a conservative attack machine.

    2. It’s not working very well, due to lack of credibility and its petty viciousness.

    3. It’s there whether or not someone here feels like providing you with names, dates & times.

    biwah (f5ca22)

  74. I read the links, and in a word:

    Whatever.

    If that’s good enough evidence for you, then so be it.

    biwah (f5ca22)

  75. I wouldn’t use those terms to describe her, but I don’t feel the criticisms I have of the news coverage constitute a smear of her.

    She offered contradictory stories about her meeting with President Bush; the left can spin like tops to deny it, but it doesn’t make it any less true or newsworthy. Small wonder he wouldn’t want to meet with her again privately, if he is concerned that her account of the second meeting won’t be accurate.

    She has called Bush the biggest terrorist in the world, and a maniac. Small wonder he wouldn’t want to meet with her publicly, in light of such rhetoric.

    If the issue is why Bush did not meet with her again — as so many loudly wondered for several days — then I think these facts go a long way to explain it.

    Patterico (8303b8)

  76. Everytime someone responds to silly points raised by militant leftists, its a “smear”
    Ridiculous. The woman’s political view are deraged, to be charitable. Its not that much of a stretch to call her an american-hater given some of her comments.

    K.M. (b8a641)

  77. K.M.:

    The leftists are militant? Who do they want to attack, sitting in their ditch? Is it more of an emotional militance, as opposed to that brand of militance, currently in vogue, that involves shooting and bombing? I’m not sure I follow.

    Also, is it really just leftists? Polls taken prior to the Crawford camp show approval of the Iraq operation to be at just over a third.

    Everytime someone responds to silly points raised by militant leftists, its a “smear.”

    Sure, if by “response to silly points,” you mean nonsensical playground-style name-calling.

    Patterico, your point continues to be valid but I question how much it matters. There is an explanation for the inconsistency. You just don’t like or accept it, but many reasonable people, drawing on their understanding of human behavior, do.

    Is there proof that Bush was 100% respectful and properly solemn in that brief meeting? No – no proof of the opposite either – my guess is that the truth is somewhere in the middle.

    Don’t be so shocked that journalism is a matter of emphasis. Which is why, to quote some guy named Henri, de la Fontaine, “every journalist owes tribute to the evil one.”

    Far more important is that this little “un-newsworthy” incident has become a watershed and a turning point for what people think of Bush and of his war – and not because of any NYT article, not because of massive leftist brainwashing, and in spite of those oh-so-judicious critiques of Sheehan’s chracter and motivations.

    And Bush coming out to talk with Cindy – that’s largely symbolic, just as Bush’s refusal to go is, while perhaps rationally justifiable, is hugely symbolic. Only symbolic action can enable citizens to come nose to nose with governments that otherwise ignore them, so it’s a tool citizens retain. If they use it right, they win.

    That sea change in the opinion of a public that has seen and endless parade of shifting rationales, shifting goals, surging casualties, squandered opportunities, and no lasting positive results?

    It’s all just spin.

    Sure.

    biwah (f5ca22)

  78. Truth to tell I prefer the term “Moonbat” to describe Cindy Mother Sheehan as I think she is still a bit too much of a fledgling leftie to fully warrant the stronger terms biwah listed – yet. However for those who require something less than a signed confession to support those allegations, there is plenty of evidence that Sheehan is well on her way to fully justifying those titles and more. Michael Moore, the DNC, MSM etc are variously convinced that day is here or not far off – here’s hoping they are disappointed, for the sake of Sheehan and (whatever is left of) her family.

    Scott (57c0cc)


  79. I prefer the term “Moonbat”

    Very nice – a less vicious, more nonsensical smear.


    here’s hoping they are disappointed, for the sake of Sheehan and (whatever is left of) her family.

    Ugh. The Right’s concern for Sheehan and her family is about as genuine as Bush’s concern for Iraqi people. “Here’s hoping” you’re an exception Scott.

    biwah (f5ca22)

  80. “The Right’s concern for Sheehan and her family is about as genuine as Bush’s concern for Iraqi people”

    I think most of those who have posted comments critical of Sheehan on this site do indeed feel sympathetic for Casey’s death – but are unwilling to allow the Left to twist that sympathy into a bulletproof shroud for their new figurehead.

    Scott (57c0cc)

  81. had to add:

    Although I’m not a particularly sensitive (or even principled) person, it strikes me as a little sick to call Sheehan “Mother” as a form of mockery.

    I doubt it happened overnight Scott, but even if my comments don’t change your mind, they should make you wonder if this is the best you can do. And if it is…

    you get the picture.

    biwah (f5ca22)

  82. “it strikes me as a little sick to call Sheehan “Mother” as a form of mockery.”

    I see. OK for the Kos Kidz to propose the term in worshipful reverence, but anyone who mocks it is “a little sick”.

    This is what I was talking about in re: the bulletproof shroud of sympathy – only in this case it seems the diktat need only originate from the Left to register as sacrosanct in your mind.

    I am indeed beginning to “get the picture”.

    Scott (57c0cc)

  83. There is an explanation for the inconsistency. You just don’t like or accept it, but many reasonable people, drawing on their understanding of human behavior, do.

    Every explanation I have seen purposely ignores her description of Bush as “sincere” and pretends the issue is 1) whether she changed her mind about the war (I admit that she hasn’t) or 2) why she didn’t light into Bush in the meeting (I understand why she didn’t, but the issue is not her behavior, it’s her varying descriptions of *his* behavior).

    Even if one can twist oneself into a pretzel to reconcile the two accounts, I don’t see how anyone can possibly argue that the earlier account should be totally suppressed, as the LA Times (for one) has done.

    Patterico (19e407)


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