Saturday, January 14, 2017

Our Liberal Media

Oh good, it's been a few hours since a putatively "centrist" or "liberal" publication has written something unbelievably stupid. Then again, the New Republic didn't really "write" it so much as repost it from Open Mike Allen's new Axios website, which appears to still be under construction.

I mean, for fuck's sake. Neither one of these "articles" features so much as a single fresh thought or insight; instead they both (again, since one is simply a poor rehash of the other) show the absolute laziest both-sides-do-it clichés. Open Mike Allen has engaged in the worst sort of lazy journamalistic fart-knockery, and then the New Republic -- which, I hear, was something of a respectable publication at some point in the time-space continuum -- has uncritically stenographed Allen's ludicrous assertions.

Would I be thrilled to have Sheryl Sandberg as Treasury Secretary? No, not really, but she seems to be at least as qualified as slumlord/movie producer/Goldman Sachs slug Steven Mnuchin. Judging from the rest of the list, it seems Sandberg probably would have been selected for Commerce anyway, which would have made more sense.

(It should be duly noted that both surnames on the supposed short list for Treasury, Sandberg and Lael Brainard, are misspelled. Brainard has served as Under Secretary of Treasury for International Affairs, and is currently on the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, not that either Axios nor New Republic bothered to point that out, busy as they were with their cheap, shitty false equivalencies.)

As for Howard Schultz being the only name listed for Secretary of Labor, why the fuck not? Starbucks is as close to a model employer as one could ask for these days. Totally the same thing as Clownstick selection Fast Food Andy Puzder, who abhors breaks and the minimum wage (and may have physically assaulted his ex-wife back in the '80s, which at least gives him another thing in common with his future boss).

I would encourage everyone to read both postings, as they are mercifully brief, but still give quite a complete and dismal picture of why the media landscape is utterly fucked if they persist in this fashion. Both articles are pointless and useless, as far as providing any meaningful informational content. The only reason I linked to those two wastes of pixels is so you could see for yourself.

But what's worse is the "analysis" provided by each. There is little to no comparative context provided in either instance. Allen seems agog that -- get this -- Clinton's team actually had a plan for succession:
My post-election convos with Brooklyn survivors make it clear that Hillary staffers and supporters had astonishingly specific, widely known/accepted roles planned for her administration. "Measuring the drapes" is a cliché; a notional org chart is real life.

While Trump had to scramble to build a government starting Nov. 9, Clinton had a team in waiting. By Election Day, her roster was so refined that most jobs just had one name.
Whoawhoawhoawhoawhoa. Slow your roll there, Turbo. Let me get this straight -- are you saying that a candidate for the most important government job on the planet, to oversee a nation of 325 million citizens, an economy of $14 trillion a year, and the most powerful military the world has ever seen; are you telling us that this candidate, who had previously campaigned in 2008 and had currently been campaigning for a year and a half, had a fucking plan in place of who to put on their team? Fucking seriously? You mean they don't all just scramble around in the dark, desperately trying to find their own assholes with both hands and a flashlight, the day after the election that they clearly never expected to win? Wow. Fucking brilliant insight there, bro-ham.

The New Republic's speculative analysis amazingly finds a way to be even worse:
This list contains no surprises, which is exactly why it’s so troubling. Politico initially reported in October that Clinton was considering Sheryl Sandberg for Treasury secretary. Progressives opposed that at the time, and for good reason: Sandberg’s only qualifications for that position are that she is wealthy and friendly with Clinton. Those two characteristics, wealth and loyalty, constitute the same low standard Donald Trump has applied to his own cabinet nominees. See also: Howard Schultz (of Starbucks) for labor secretary and Anna Wintour (of Vogue) for ambassador to the U.K. And then there’s Cory Booker, who has been criticized by progressives for his ties to Wall Street and his support for school vouchers—a position he shares with Trump education secretary nominee Betsy DeVos.
Taking just that last point, Booker is listed under "Big Jobs" with Tom Vilsack. That literally could mean just about anything. Booker is not listed under any other spot, including Secretary of Education. There is no reason to compare him with Betsy DeVos, whose family (as well as the family she married into) has spent generations, not to mention tens of millions of dollars, trying to influence Michigan state politics as well as national education policy. DeVos herself conceded twenty years ago that that was the case and intent of her family's "donations," to wield undue influence that mere peon voters could never hope to access.

Oh, and did we mention that DeVos' super PAC owes millions of dollars in fines for multiple election violations, which she has pointedly refused to pay for more than eight years? Well, someone should, since neither Mike Allen nor Sarah Jones could be bothered to. But yeah, other than all that, Cory Booker and Betsy DeVos are exactly alike. These fucking people.

And of course, these two dipshits are so concentrated on dumping on what they consider the one or two "boutique" listings, they don't even bother to compare (to cite just one notable example) the selections for the Department of Energy. The only name on the Clinton list was Carol Browner, who was EPA Administrator for both of Bill Clinton's terms and is at the forefront of recognizing the need to address climate change. Browner was well-qualified for the proposed position.

The incoming regime has anointed one James Richard Perry, whose most notable accomplishments are: being even dumber than his predecessor as Governor of Texas; being unable to count to three; and getting a D grade in a Texas A&M class called "Meats" (as well as "Writing for Professional Men," "Shakespeare," and "Feeds and Feeding," among others). Did I mention that Rick Perry is a glad-handing moron, whose sole qualification is that he bears a passing resemblance to Josh Brolin?

More seriously, Perry literally named the department he is now being selected to lead as one he would eliminate if he were elected president. But yeah, the real problem here is that Hillary Clinton might have appointed Anna Wintour as ambassador to the UK. Is it possible to beat people over the head with their own stupidity? If only.

I really don't know what Allen and Jones consider their job to be: journalist, reporter, political writer, analyst, some unholy combination of the above. The incoming caudillo is not the only person in the political milieu suffering from the Dunning-Kruger effect; the shithead journamalist class seems to have a high rate of infection as well.

But when they engage in nonsense like these pieces, and don't even bother to mention any of the things we just covered, they are an embarrassment to whatever their profession is supposed to be, to what they think it should be. This is unacceptable; it's shit writing and fucktarded analysis like this stupid fucking "wish list," and their catty, equivocating analyses of it, that demonstrates clearly why we are in the fix we are in, why we're stuck with a fucking cartoon character and his corrupt family and billionaire cronies in a few days.

El Caudillo made himself very clear at his "press conference" the other day what exactly he expects of the so-called free press: compliance. Reporters who criticize will simply be ignored, but only after being scolded. Writers and analysts who fail to follow the script will be upbraided on Twitter and by the propaganda outlets like Fox and Breitbart. If that's what idiot hacks like Mike Allen and Sarah Jones want, they are well on their way, because their dopey complaisance enables the more threatening behavior to come. I sincerely hope they get what's coming to them -- namely, a job they're more qualified for, like cleaning the porta-dons at the upcoming inauguration.

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