Masogyny In The Media

For those of you who, like me, are becoming more and more ashamed of my own gender and shocked by the outrageous lengths to which men in the media (including the blogosphere) will go to demonize Hillary Clinton, specifically Chris Matthews of MSNBC, I encourage you to read this article by Eric Boehlert of Media Matters.

Some highlights…

This election season, we’ve seen a cavalcade of white, middle-age men express their deep, personal contempt for the first serious female contender for the White House. Contempt, of course, that has nothing to do with Sen. Hillary Clinton’s policies or her beliefs. Instead, it’s been an oddly personal disdain dressed up as political analysis.

The way Mike Barnicle on MSNBC said Clinton “look[ed] like everyone’s first wife standing outside a probate court.” The way Bill Kristol on Fox News said that among the only people supporting Hillary Clinton were white women, and “[w]hite women are a problem, that’s, you know — we all live with that.” The way CNN’s Jack Cafferty likened Clinton to “a scolding mother, talking down to a child.” The way Fox News’ Neil Cavuto suggested Clinton was “trying to run away from this tough, kind of bitchy image.” The way MSNBC’s Tucker Carlson announced that “when [Clinton] comes on television, I involuntarily cross my legs.” The way Christopher Hitchens on CNBC described Clinton as being “sort of alternately soppy and bitchy.'” …

Matthews is hot because he dumps all over Hillary Clinton, saying rude, sexist, and demeaning things about her week after week, and the Beltway media crowd thinks its edgy and insightful and loves to watch. (As the Times noted, “Some of [Matthews’] most devoted followers are Washington media figures.”) Matthews, desperate for attention and approval, sees that media elites love his sexist shtick so he lays it on thicker and thicker. Media elites then turn around and anoint him the Hot Journalist. …

Eric finishes with this little pearl…

Matthews’ openly sexist streak extends only to Democratic and liberal women, and that’s another reason the press plays dumb. Because media elites would never anoint Matthews the Hot Journalist if he went on and on about how Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) was too ambitious, or how Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was “witchy,” or how the voice of Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) sounded like fingernails being run across a chalkboard, or how Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R-NC) had “cold eyes.”

That would be considered offensive and out of bounds. But to suggest Clinton’s a “witchy,” “anti-male” Nurse Ratched? That’s deemed by the Beltway elites to be shrewd, astute, and fearless.

And yes, as I’ve disclosed in previous posts, I voted for Obama in my state’s primary. So why am I not jumping on the disgusting, anti-Hillary, “evil, whore, bitch” bandwagon? Because it is possible for real men to support Obama without spewing, or approving of, outrageous, Republican-like personal attacks on his female opponent.

Randi Rhodes Suspended From Air America For Clinton Comment

Me? I think it – and it was a radio show reference to Hillary as a major uh… um… whore – was over the top even if you (unlike me) are not inclined to feel that the definition of a politician is someone who likes to screw with some really ODD bedfellows.

I’m not liking how nasty this campaign has become just among Democrats when it’s the tighty righty we need to focus our energies on defeating. Endorses Barack Obama


With hundreds of thousands of ballots cast across the country, for the first time in MoveOn’s history, we’ve voted together to endorse a presidential candidate in the primary. That candidate is Barack Obama.

Vote results
Obama: 197,444 – 70.4%
Clinton: 83,084 – 29.6%

Something big is clearly happening. A few weeks ago, MoveOn members we surveyed were split. But with John Edwards bowing out, progressives are coming together. Obama won over 70% of the vote yesterday, and he’s moving up in polls nationwide. As comments poured in from MoveOn members across the country, the sense of hope was inspiring.

So the question arises again: do endorsements really matter? Can they enhance how you view a candidate? Does this one change or back up your choice? In this case, can it be a detriment to a candidate? has been demonized by every facet of right-wing talk radio and FOX News. Do the conservative opinions ever matter?

John McCain Channels Dr. Strangelove?

The great folks, at Robert Greenwald and company, at Brave New Films have put together a new video remininescent of John McCain doing Peter Sellers’ timeless Dr. Strangelove role (or “How I Learned to Stop Using My Brain And Love Republican Candidates” perhaps?).

Check it out here.

Slim Pickens probably won’t eat his heart out over this (and if you don’t know who slim is, go rent a copy of Strangelove) though Peter Sellers MAY role over in his grave.

Brave New Films NH Coverage

If you’re tired of the mass media telling us how to think about the elections and the results of the elections, give Brave New Films Live Online Coverage a try. They’re currently taking live suggestions and comments about what they should discuss/address for the evening. Current lineup is as follows:

7:10: Robert Greenwald, Brave New Films
7:40: Matthew Yglesias, The Atlantic
7:50: Robin Abcarian, L.A. Times
8:00: Billy Wimsatt, League of Young Voters
8:10: Rachel Sklar, The Huffington Post
8:20: Jane Hamsher, Firedoglake
8:30: Jim Dean, Democracy For America
8:40: Steve Clemons, The Washington Note
9:00: Lane Hudson, News for the Left
9:10: Isaiah Poole,
9:40: James Rucker, Color of Change
10:00: Liza Sabater, Culture Kitchen
10:10: Eric Boehlert, Media Matters

Help support independent media and not, like I just heard on Headline News, extrapolation of New Hampshire Primary results based on how Dixville Notch, NH – with 17 voters – fared. FOX News too:

McCain with 4 votes, Mitt Romney with 2 votes, Rudy Giuliani with 1 vote. Those were the only Republican votes cast.

On the Democratic side, Obama won a landslide 7 votes compared with 2 for John Edwards, one for Bill Richardson and none for Hillary Clinton.

That’s right: “a landslide 7 votes.” We’re certainly in for it.

Romney on the Fox News Boycott

Mitt Romney recently took the Democratic presidential candidates to task for not appearing on Fox News. After all the moderator for the first Republican debate on MSNBC will be none other than Chris Matthews, Tip O’Neill’s former chief of staff. This is evidence to Romney that Republicans “have a lot more courage of our convictions.”

So much is wrong with this, that I am unsure where even to start, but here it goes. Continue reading

Calling BS on Imus Firing

Crossposted at CfC with all the swear words.  This isn’t going to get me any hash marks on my dance card.

Where’s your fracking ACLU now? Casually commenting about the corpse.

I’m calling BS on his firing. And apparently I’m alone.

Yesterday I had the “joy” of catching pieces of Hannity, Savage, and Beck. And to my surprise, they were all right. Every damn one of their rants over Imus was right. They were all ringing the red bell, warning us of the coming invasion. They’re doing it because it’s wrong, but they’re also doing it because they’re scared out of their fracking pants. I would be too.

It’s days like this that I cringe at the label “liberal,” and I cry for our country. We done bad. The gun went off, Rover’s brains are splattered in the dirt, and I’ve got a shovel and a roll of paper towels.  That’s how sad I feel.
Continue reading

Big Blogs, Small Blogs

Tell me something: Are you, like many of us, reading the B-I-G political blogs less and less, except perhaps for individual diary entries?

I’ve talked with hundreds of people via blogs, email, instant message, and face-to-face over the last five months and, more and more, I hear the same refrain: “You know, I used to practically live at Atrios or DailyKos [just two examples] but it’s like they’re an entity onto themselves now rather than about empowering the grass/netroots.” Again and again, I hear folks say they feel some of the biggest blogs have become too corporate, too self-impressed.

Ah, that’s not to say a big blog must be that way: all about the central blogger-as- personality-as-big-as-if-not-larger-than-the-pols-they-write-about. There are a number of huge blogs where the information for the people is still the main focus.

Given these sentiments I keep hearing expressed, however, I find myself wondering if the same blogs considered so key for the 2004 presidential race will “move” voters and undecideds will pack that power for 2008. And should they?

What are your thoughts on the big (almost always boy) blogs?

Let’s Hoist (At Least) a Metaphorical Glass: A Salute to Molly Ivins, 1944-2007

[While I would love to start my contributions here on a happier, more dynamic note, how can we possibly begin without acknowledging the loss of a woman who somehow made the cesspool of politics so much easier to understand, who brought light and life to whatever topic she deftly dissected, and for whom many of us today grieve? However, I suspect she would not want us to cry in our glasses, metaphorical or otherwise. No, this great lady would tell us to get down to the business of transforming America from its current state to a better place where there is far less for savvy, satirical minds such as hers to poke at.]

Were you crushed, too, when you heard last night that wry, irreverent, irrepressible, and seemingly unsinkable Molly Ivins has died?

Ironically perhaps, the word came to me last night from a Republican friend and former Texan herself who, despite the many times this friend decried Molly’s analysis of GOP dirty tricks, was absolutely heartbroken that the columnist she so frequently railed at had passed. Wrote my friend:

How can she leave us now, when we need her more than ever? There is just no one like Molly. No one can fill her shoes! Why her? Why now!

Indeed. Did I mention my friend started this current presidential administration as a Bush apologist, someone furious with every “slight” she saw aimed at a man she was sure would shine among the brightest of what his father once coined the “thousand points of light”? Yet this was her reaction to Molly’s untimely demise.

Molly was the first regular writer specializing on the political stage that I genuinely liked (ok, loved from the very start) because she could take the biggest ego, the messiest maelstrom, the sorriest sap, the most absurd circumstance, the most heinous offense and boil him/her/it down not only into something I could understand (and back then, I was far more naive even than I am today when idealism still counts among my “lesser” traits), but also something I could smile and laugh about. Continue reading