Willingly Distracted from the Real News

Before it actually occurred, many in the blogosphere speculated that Congressional testimony by comedian Stephen Colbert was intended to distract from concurrent testimony. If that was the case, from the perspective of mainstream media, the ploy clearly worked. Saturday’s Providence Journal, for example, dutifully covered the “controversy” over the Colbert performance.
Unless I’ve missed it, the paper has yet to mention more-serious testimony by former voting chief for the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division Christopher Coates that race determines whose voting rights are protected under the Obama administration.
Yes, Colbert thwarted the strategy at least to the degree that he made a mockery of such hearings and thus threw mud on those who oversee them. But getting dirty is part of politics, and it’s a calculated and tolerated outcome for politicians who prefer that you look at the dirt on their lying faces rather than the tar that they’ve smeared on our civic structure. As for the mainstream media, their pages probably won’t bear the weight of much more fluff.

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rhody
rhody
10 years ago

I’m getting a laugh out of the mainstream media is getting its panties twisted over this. Hell, Colbert’s one or two days of work in the fields is probably one or two more days than anybody else in that room ever spent there.
Steve’s act seems to be getting a pretty good reaction from the public. Remember how his brilliant bit at the White House Correspondents Association dinner drew stony silence in the room but was a viral hit? Give him credit – he’s dealt with two rooms full of humorless, monstrous egos.
John Conyers looks stupid for trying to ban him from speaking (how many other celebrities and athletes have spoken at these hearings?), and Steny Hoyer’s argument that Colbert’s appearance was a threat to national security (whatever, Sten) on the Sunday talk shows looked just as stupid.

Monique
Editor
10 years ago

From the second link:
“The Justice Department is ignoring civil rights cases that involve white victims and wrongly abandoned a voter intimidation case against the New Black Panther Party last year, a top department official testified Friday. He called the department’s conduct a “travesty of justice.””
Very troubling. The Obama Justice Department has taken the US back a hundred years to the bad old days of officially sanctioned racism at the polling place.

Sammy
Sammy
10 years ago

What the Bush Administration did is not new. SINCE.. 1981, the Republican Party has adopted a strategy of suppressing the black vote in closely contested states in order to win elected office. The political calculus is simple: For the past forty years, blacks have voted overwhelmingly for Democrats in statewide and presidential elections, and Democrats have required high black turnout to win closely contested elections, particularly in the South. One way to ensure Republican victories in closely contested states, then, is to SUPPRESS.. the black vote. Thus, for the past twenty-five years, Republican Party functionaries and Republican Departments of Justice have administered “vote integrity” and “vote security” initiatives aimed at PURGING.
blacks from the rolls and intimidating those that come to the polls. More recently, the Bush 2000 and 2004 campaigns have worked with Republican Secretaries of State – Florida 2000 and Ohio 2004 are the most noteworthy examples – to create voting system crises where large numbers of newly registered blacks are anticipated at the polls. The results have been a lack of voting machines in high turnout precincts resulting in long lines that act as a disincentive to vote, understaffed election helplines that lead to busy signals for voters and election workers, arbitrary election administration rulings that disqualify prospective black voters, and a number of other preventable problems that disproportionately effect new black voters. Once in office, the Bush Administration simply enlisted the Justice Department, Civil Rights Division in this ongoing campaign.
This and previous Republican Administrations have been able to systematically subvert and circumvent the Voting Rights Act in its present form.

George
George
10 years ago

WOW. Sammy learned how to copy/paste from DailyKos

Patrick
Patrick
10 years ago

So it sounds like Sammy is saying that because he believes a Republican previously did something that may be unethical but still legal, that makes it perfectly ok for people to stand outside of a polling station and physically intimidate and verbally threaten voters.
Hey, it’s all good, right Sammy? So says the guy from Arizona.

Warrington Faust
Warrington Faust
10 years ago

Sammy, it seems to me that who can vote and how they vote is a states perogative. I won’t say they can’t be influenced, but the rules aren’t made in Washington.

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

So sammy,it’s ok for some thugs to intimidate voters with clubs because they’re Black?You are an over the edge..

מחסום חשמל
10 years ago

הייתי רוצה לספר לכם שסוף סוף עשיתי בחירה ב חברה שתייצר לחנייה שלי שער אוטומטי , לאחר חיפושים הבנתי שאני רוכש את מחסומים חשמליים אצל חברת שערים הינה חברת מסגרות מקצועית ואמינה . הבעלי מקצוע שמבצעים עבודה בחברה מסרו יחס נדיב . מסרו לי הסבר מדוייק על מה אני משלם . לבסוף אם אתם נמצאים במדינת ישראל וזקוקים לחברה שיודעת להתעסק אלומיניום התקשרו אליהם הם ממש טובים וגם המחיר שווה כל שקל .

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Vernon Pander
9 years ago

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