Friday, July 23, 2010

Because I'm not a complete partisan

Let me join with Dennis in my revulsion at Ed Schultz's speech over at Netroots Nation. Here are some of the highlowlights:

But Schultz's specific criticism was that the Obama administration reacts to controversies sparked in and furthered by conservative media.

"They must have a war room at the White House. I think they've got a sissy room too," Schultz said. "I didn't vote for that." [...]

He said he supports primaries as needed to keep the party's moral compass. "We have to do our vetting process. You're either with us, or you're against us in the progressive movement in America," he said.

He also complained that Obama hasn't gone on his show or sat recently for interviews with Keith Olbermann or Rachel Maddow, adding that during the campaign, "I busted my ass for Obama." Schultz said that instead of going on The Ed Show, Obama went on Bret Baier's show on Fox, "in my time slot. What's that all about?"

Yuck! So basically, this guy is a sexist, self-obsessed, ultimatum throwing would-be tribune of the people. I realize this guy wants to be the Rush Limbaugh of the left, but honestly, you could change two words in here and it could just be Rush Limbaugh.

I actually find it shocking that making a sexist joke at a progressive event wouldn't be a career-ender. Conservatives complain that the media only notes when their side does something like this, and while I think it's mostly bullshit I really can't explain what's going on here. I see Ed Schultz as essentially a left-wing Tea Partier who can be just as dangerous as a Limbaugh if his perspective really gains some mainstream purchase on the left, and that this incident hasn't already crushed him--and, indeed, that he actually merits the keynote at a big activist conference of the left--just worries me about the sort of power he must already have. I think it's a mistake for the left to assume that what's happening to the right can't happen to us too.

In historical terms, this guy is the Charles Coughlin to Glenn Beck's Charles Lindburgh. Ultimately, FDR beat them both. I hope that Obama is similarly successful.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.