URLs du Jour

2019-06-29

[Amazon Link]

  • Power Line notes an Associated Press Correction: The Segregationists Were Democrats.

    In a story June 27 about the Democratic presidential debate, The Associated Press reported erroneously in some versions that former Vice President Joe Biden worked with Republican segregationist senators. In fact, the senators were Democrats.

    I looked and… yup, page A6 of the June 28 Foster's Daily Democrat, my local newspaper:

    The Democratic Party’s early front-runner, 76-yearold former Vice President Joe Biden, was forced to defend his record on race in the face of tough questions from California Sen. Kamala Harris, the only African American on stage. That was only after he defended his age after jabs from one of two millennial candidates in the prime-time clash.

    “I do not believe you are a racist,” Harris said, though she described Biden’s record of working with Republican segregationist senators on non-race issues as “hurtful.”

    Harris was referring to Biden's specifically mentioning his civil relationships with Senators Talmadge and Eastman, two lifelong Democrats. But the magic of AP reportage transmogrified them into Republicans.

    Unlike Power Line, I don't believe this is intentionally malicious, since it's so easily debunked. But it's a sorry demonstration of the historical ignorance of news reporters/editors and their (apparently) automatic willingness to assign all racial sinfulness to the GOP.

    As near as I can tell, Foster's doesn't I sent a terse, polite note to Foster's requesting a correction. We'll see what happens.


  • And it's tough for me to buy all the crocodile tears over Biden's footsie with his party's racists, while nobody's mentioning Bernie Sanders' 1988 Soviet Union honeymoon. Quoting George Will:

    [Sanders] had chosen, surely as an ideological gesture, to spend his honeymoon in the Soviet Union in 1988. Gulags still functioned, probably including some of the ‘cold Auschwitzes’ in Siberia, described in Conquest’s ‘Kolyma.’ The honeymooner did not mind that in 1988 political prisoners were — as may still be the case — being tortured in psychiatric ‘hospitals.’ … [The] Soviet Union now is such a receding memory that Bernie Sanders’s moral obtuseness — the obverse of Conquest’s character — is considered an amusing eccentricity.

    The link goes to Politifact, so they tend to excuse Bernie's trip. But note that earlier this year, Bernie refused to attend the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) conference, presumably because he found them to be more objectionable than the 1988 Soviets.


  • A pretty eye-opening report from Heterodox Academy: Research on the Partisan 'Perception Gap'. Key findings include:

    • Democrats and Republicans significantly overestimate how many people on the ‘other side’ hold extreme views. Typically, their estimates are roughly double the actual numbers for a given issue.  
    • Greater partisanship is associated with holding more exaggerated views of one’s political opponents.
    • The Perception Gap is strongest on both “Wings” (America’s more politically partisan groups).
    • Consumption of most forms of media, including talk radio, newspapers, social media, and local news, is associated with a wider Perception Gap.
    • Education seems to increase, rather than mitigate, the Perception Gap (just as increased education has found to track with increased ideological prejudice). College education results in an especially distorted view of Republicans among liberals in particular.
    • The wider people’s Perception Gap, the more likely they are to attribute negative personal qualities (like ‘hateful’ or ‘brainwashed’) to their political opponents.

    Stop me if I exhibit any of those symptoms, OK?


  • Let me quote my own Tweet.


  • Which brings me to this. And the Daily Wire redeems itself somewhat via this observation from Matt Walsh: The Horrible Line That People Are Stupidly Applauding From Last Night's Debate.

    [… Kamala] Harris had two attention-grabbing moments last night. The second was when she accused former Vice President Joe Biden of racism without accusing him of racism. She launched into her smear by stipulating that "I don't believe you are a racist" and then immediately transitioned into explaining why he is a racist. The first moment was a line she obviously came to the debate hoping to use. Interrupting some squabbling between the other candidates, she declared: "Hey, guys, you know what? America does not want to witness a food fight. They want to know how we're going to put food on their table." Raucous applause followed.

    And comments:

    These people see us, the average citizens, as blind and helpless baby birds, chirping for the government to come and regurgitate into our mouths. And the sad reality is that many Americans are indeed helpless baby birds. The goal of the Democratic Party — and the reason behind all of their desperate promises to give us free health care, free college, debt forgiveness, etc. — is to inculcate that sort of dependence in all people. They want an entire population of blind, scared, and flightless little birds waiting for mommy bird to come with a couple of worms to hold us over. Kamala Harris made that clear last night.

    Couldn't have said it better. So I didn't.