Hot as shit outside this near-noon Sunday here in California’s Central Valley — we’re forecast for boiling-scalding temperatures through the middle of the month at least, with 115 degrees predicted for this coming Tuesday.
In the heat of cruel idiocy:
This isn’t the defense he thinks it is pic.twitter.com/0YPcYL2pon
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 4, 2022
Beyond the idiots lies the lying. In this world of heavy-duty ‘alternative facts‘ of T-Rump and Republicans lying at the drop of a hat, or even in the case with Donnie Jr., they are lies without a sense of concealment — they’re obvious assholes right out in the open.
Contextually to my post yesterday on news media not taking on the frightful chaos from the entire Republican party, Robert Reich at the Guardian this morning emphasized the journalistic drum roll of the fight against the lying and the anti-democratic motion of T-Rump’s cult, concluding:
It is dangerous to believe that “balanced journalism” gives equal weight to liars and to truth-tellers, to those intent on destroying democracy and those seeking to protect it, to the enablers of an ongoing attempted coup and those who are trying to prevent it.
Two Sundays ago, CNN’s Brian Stelter, host of the show Reliable Sources, put it well:
“It’s not partisan to stand up for decency and democracy and dialogue. It’s not partisan to stand up to demagogues. It’s required. It’s patriotic. We must make sure we don’t give platforms to those who are lying to our faces.”
Not incidentally, that was Stelter’s last show on CNN.
On Friday, CNN White House reporter John Harwood said:
“The core point [Biden] made in that political speech about a threat to democracy is true. Now, that’s something that’s not easy for us, as journalists, to say. We’re brought up to believe there’s two different political parties with different points of view and we don’t take sides in honest disagreements between them. But that’s not what we’re talking about. These are not honest disagreements. The Republican party right now is led by a dishonest demagogue.”
Harwood went on to say:
“Many, many Republicans are rallying behind his lies about the 2020 election and other things as well. And a significant portion – or a sufficient portion – of the constituency that they’re leading attacked the Capitol on January 6. Violently.”
Shortly after making these remarks, Harwood announced he was no longer with CNN.
A source told Dan Froomkin of Press Watch that CNN had informed Harwood last month that he was being let go. That was despite his long-term contract with the network. The source also said that Harwood had used his last broadcast to “send a message”.
Why must we wait until some of America’s ablest journalists are sacked before they are willing and able to tell America the truth?
It is not “partisan” to explain what Trump and his anti-democracy movement are seeking.
It is not “taking sides” to point out that the Trump Republicans are trying to establish an authoritarian government in America.
It is not “violating journalistic standards” to tell the unvarnished truth about what America is facing today.
In fact, a failure to call out the Trump Republicans for what they are – liars, enablers, and accessories to crimes against the constitution – itself violates the most basic canons of journalistic ethics.
“Balanced journalism” does not exist halfway between facts and lies.
And in further context of T-Rump Jr’s empty-headed remark above, Jeremiah David at Salon, also this morning, surmised an ending on the ‘vacuity’ (lack of thought or intelligence; empty-headedness) in the over-flow of lying:
At a certain distance from reality, our intuitions tend to fall apart. As Jonathan Rauch once put it, “This is not about persuasion: This is about disorientation.” Laughter, puzzlement, dismissal — our usual reactions to absurdity — are worse than impotent, in that they offer cover for bad actors to push us further and further away from the truth. We need to stop treating the current information crisis as a carnival sideshow and start seeing it for the headliner it has become. Importantly, the mathematical concept of vacuity ignores the way that truly cynical people have always lied: not in separate units but as an accretion, a slow buildup of falsehood on falsehood, so that we bury ourselves looking for the bottom.
And with idiots, the end game is most-of-the-time played first.
However, MAGA nutcases are way-way beyond just the ‘common clay‘ of asshole insurrectionists:
Fun times or not, once again here we are…
(Illustration out front: Edvard Munch‘s ‘The Scream,’ lithograph version, found here.)