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February 05, 2007

From Michelle Malkin's lips...

Michelle Malkin has no idea how smart Amanda Marcotte is.

If she did she wouldn't volunteer to read Amanda's brilliant New Orleans post. Watch the video.
 

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I think that the whole brouhaha that the extreme wingers are raising about new Edwards bloggers will have a) no effect on Democratic primary voters a year from now, b) no effect on national voters two years from now, and... [Read More]

Comments

As I've written elsewhere, I hope Amanda serves as a millstone around Edwards' neck.

And yet, despite this blogwhoring, no one has commented on your blog. Sad.

Overheated, about BushCo's handling of the Katrina debacle and the loss of New Orleans? It's a pretty incensed post, but over twelve hundred people died and an entire American city was lost.

Amanda's post was written while hundreds of thousands of Americans were displaced within their own country. Amanda was helping to take care of some of the evacuees who fled to Texas.

I don't think this really explains any of the aspects of that post that seemed over the top to me. These are all statements about severity. The parts of the post that seemed most over the top to me weren't about severity, they were about motive. Attributing the administration's failure to some sort of ridiculously caricatured culture war motive seems over the top because it's just not believable. There are plenty of absolutely contemptible motives that do seem plausible. Maybe the administration failed because they don't take the responsibilities of governance seriously, or because they don't understand the material limitations of many Americans, or because they don't take sufficient responsibility for geographic areas where they don't expect to get many votes. Maybe they failed because they can't empathize with people who don't look enough like them. Those are all terrible, terrible reasons to let one person, let alone over a thousand people, die.

But to say that they let New Orleans be demolished because it was "too European" or not sanitized and Wal-Mart-y enough is just ridiculous. I've known plenty of high-enough-powered Republicans in my day, and while they often had horrible motives and priorities, none of them thought like that. And when you tell them or people who know them that Republicans think like that, you'll be immediately dismissed, because they'll know you're wrong. That's why Malkin & Co. are laughing. Amanda let them off the hook by accusing them of stuff that they know they didn't do, instead of accusing them of the horrible stuff they did.

I don't see, at all, how Amanda's helping some evacuees is even relevant. Good for her for doing that. When somene invents a machine that converts good karma into not being wrong, I'll chip in to buy it for her.

And yet, despite this blogwhoring, no one has commented on your blog. Sad.

Not nearly as sad as being a do-nothing para--err, I mean, postmodernist philosopher at Cajun U.

Cajun U? Excellent google skillz, and a truly classy comeback. With this sort of wit, it won't be long before you get a comment or even two. Let me know when that happens, and I'll stop back.

Aeroman, who cares who agrees with Amanda's theory of New Orleans. I'm saying that the rawness of her sentiment was entirely in keeping with the outrage in the country at the time, especially for someone who was coping with the aftermath first hand.

Michelle Malkin's attempts at cruelty know no bounds. Trying to mock Amanda for her reaction to the drowning of New Orleans would be like mocking a Long Islander for getting upset about the Twin Towers on September 14, 2001.

Besides which, Amanda's entitled to her theory about why New Orleans was left drown while Florida was deluged with more aid than it could use during previous hurricanes under Bush. If you're alleging that the race and class makeup of New Orleans had nothing to do with the level and timing of the federal response, you're on much more tenuous ground than Amanda.

Obviously, high level Republican operatives don't come right out and say, "I fucked New Orleans because it creeped me out." Even if Amanda's right, that's not the behavior you'd expect from these guys.

In general the Bushies didn't give reasons, didn't need reasons, why they didn't step up. And yet, they didn't. And we're entitled to speculate about why. If you recall the contemporaneous level of contempt directed at the evacuees and the residents of the Super Dome and the Convention Center at large by everyone from Jonah Goldberg to Barbara Bush and throughout the right wing blogosphere, it becomes understandable why someone might assume the worst about an administration that was still more or less on top of its surrogates in the right wing noise machine.

Most blogging is conducted in real time, as the news cycle unfolds. It's unfair and mean spirited to treat someone's immediate reaction to a crisis as being definitive either of their own thoughts on the matter or on them as a writer. If you go back and read contemporary opinion writing in the blogs and elsewhere, you'll find that her writing captures a lot of public and expert sentiment at the time.

Amanda was in the thick of that crisis personally. She and Pam have written a lot about NOLA since. If anyone actually cares about Amanda's positions on New Orleans and reconstruction, they should check out her work in full.

If you're alleging that the race and class makeup of New Orleans had nothing to do with the level and timing of the federal response, you're on much more tenuous ground than Amanda.

And if I'm alleging that early rock drummer Sandy Nelson is on Mount Rushmore, I'm on even more tenuous grounds!

In my comment, I specifically said that I found it plausible that the administration's response could be attributed to not understanding or appreciating some Americans' material limitations, and even that it could be plausibly attributed to their inability to empathize with people who didn't look like them. I'd make "class" and "race" more obvious, but I don't think browsers recognize the html flashing text tag anymore.

Of course, it's no big surprise that you'd twist my statement here. I know the rules. There are friends, and there are commenters, and the former group always gets every presumption in their favor, as far as you and Darcy are concerned. I must be mistaken if I say Amanda deleted a post, or I must be making some ridiculous assertion, despite clear language to the contrary in my comment. Whereas if Alon or Amanda say I think the onus is on women to avoid getting raped, silence. If Teresa has some problem with something I say, give her some personal information about me over coffee. That's just how it works at Majikthise.

I comment here because I am a huge fan of your writing, and I often think that the discussion is very rewarding and worthwhile. But then, invariably, I'm stupid enough to forget that the cool kids only tolerate the dweebs as long as the dweebs remember their place, and I comment on a post like this. My mistake.

Watching all you lefties play.
This time the meme seems to be that all Malkin is making fun of is Amanda's silly New Orleans post. When in fact she reads from at least 3 , and possibly 4 of Amanda's posts. I think Michelle has Mandy's true character pegged to a "t". The Duke post was inexcusable, esp. considering how uniformed Amanda is. She hasn't the guts to apologize, and this is an issue in Edward's home state.

I enjoy this. You poor radical fools (well, actually, you foul-mouthed intemperate ideological buffoons who are every bit as guilty of stupidity and as partisan as any of your well-loved "wingnut" foes)aren't going to be able to protect Mandy from the Catholic league. Things are getting way too big. Mandy's used to picking on small fries like some online libertarians, equity feminists, and MRA's (ahh, hell, might as well say Misogynists as that's what you slander them all with) not with major political organizations or people who've actually been on TV and published books.

Protect her, you cannot, and truth be told, by grace of whatever God there is or may be - she doesn't deserve protection.

Goodnight.

"I enjoy this."

Reverse concern troll. Not a bold choice.

Oh, yeah. The Catholic League is the very soul of temperance:

William A. Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights: "Well, look, there are people in Hollywood, not all of them, but there are some people who are nothing more than harlots. They will do anything for the buck. They wouldn't care. If you asked them to sodomize their own mother in a movie, they would do so, and they would do it with a smile on their face." [2/9/06]

And check out this classic exchange:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6685898/

And that's just scratching the surface. I predict teh Donohue is going to be the gift that keeps on giving.

Whereas if Alon or Amanda say I think the onus is on women to avoid getting raped, silence.

I never said that. I noted that the people who said it was moral to go see The Pianist were the the same people who called you and me privileged asshats in the rape flamewars, while you said it was not moral to go see the movie.

But then, invariably, I'm stupid enough to forget that the cool kids only tolerate the dweebs as long as the dweebs remember their place, and I comment on a post like this.

You're getting worked up over the fact that Darcy said "Amanda did not 'scrub' anything," thinking you were referring to an earlier blog cycle about some post that wasn't deleted on purpose. If I left every blog where someone said something like that to me, regardless of who was right at the end, I wouldn't be able to comment anywhere, including on my own place.

The thing about the entire "Amanda provides red meat to people" part is that so far there seem to be two strategies for getting noticed on the liberal blogosphere. One is to build a safe space for like-minded people and slowly expand the safe space; that's the strategy Amanda, Jessica, and Jill are using. The other is to build a moderate image and get into the mainstream space; that's what Lindsay, Ezra, and, I think, Steve Gilliard are doing. For a very long time, the Lindsay strategy seemed to be generating more influence, until John Edwards hired Amanda.

Aeroman, your sequence of posts is embarrassing.

In your first post, you say that Amanda "scrubbed" a post and the Edwards campaign would be better off if she were not working there. In your second post, you repeat your allegation that she "scrubbed" a post.

You really need to know what the word "scrub" means if you are going to use it like this. Scrubbing is a dishonest act of pretending that something possibly objectionable never happened. When a post or an article is scrubbed from a website, it is simply removed from the site with no record whatsoever. Usually the word is used in the context of a news article where, for example, a quote that is damaging to a major political figure is replaced with something more innocuous, but no mention of the change is made.

What Amanda did is far from scrubbing. She removed a post that she made but left a clarification about exactly what her position was. There is, in fact, nothing wrong with that. At all.

Your third comment again insinuates that the Edwards campaign would be better off without her.

Your fourth comment is sympathetic to Malkin's point-of-view that it's laughable to think New Orleans was neglected because it was too "European". FWIW, I think it was neglected because it was too African, but the point remains that New Orleans is not a red meat, Republican city filled with Walmarts. To that extent, Amanda's point is on. The Republican base is fairly xenophobic and are keen on tastelessness like using "French" as an insult. No American city is more French than New Orleans. And it's a coincidence that the city is neglected?

Your casual disregard for the fact that Amanda was working on the ground to try to help people is, well, special. I think Lindsay covers this point particularly well.

In your next comment, you start pretending that you didn't, just two comments before, insinuate that it was ludicrous to suggest that New Orleans was treated poorly because it was a city far, culturally, from the "American" norm. But let's see exactly what you did say:

But to say that they let New Orleans be demolished because it was "too European" or not sanitized and Wal-Mart-y enough is just ridiculous.

This is a real exercise in self-pity.

"I must be mistaken if I say Amanda deleted a post."

Oh - now who's scrubbing? You didn't say Amanda deleted a post. You said she scrubbed a post. The difference in meaning is fairly clear to the net savvy. If you cannot discuss these things without retreating to self-pity, you might be fighting above your weight class. Your initial salvo basically accused Amanda of dishonest and also insinuated that the Edwards campaign would be better off without her, i.e., the Edwards campaign should fire her.

Of course, this is Malkin's goal in all of this kerfuffle, isn't it? She is trying to raise her prestige level by getting a major Democratic campaign to fire a recent hire because the blogger is too "liberal". You are feeding right into Malkin's plans.

If you don't understand that or don't understand why Amanda would be defended by the blogging community, you really don't understand very much.

I think that some of you underestimate Amanda's ability as a persuasive and logical writer. It's true that she makes a lot of emotional, rabble-rousing, red meat-type posts, but the reason I first started reading her, way back when she was still writing on Mouse Words, was because of her ability to write logical, insightful, interesting, and well-informed posts from a fresh perspective that I wasn't used to.

This isn't to say that the Edwards campaign hired her while ignoring her abilities as an emotive, rabble-rousing, red-meat propagandist (although there's something odd about calling Amanda a "red-meat propagandist"). I'm just saying that if that's all you see, you probably don't read much of her writing (not that there's anything wrong with that, since no one can read every post in every blog). Malkin, of course, picked posts she thought wouldn't be persuasive to people who are already fans of Amanda.

(Incidentally, I don't mean to be too critical of another Pandagonian, but I think that Pam Spaulding is a better example of a pure, red-meat-for-the-base propagandist type, which is why I've typically found her posts to be less interesting than Amanda's. Of course, if you're a big Pam Spaulding fan, then great, but her writing doesn't really do much for me.)

Ho-ly shit! That is one of the most bizarre things I've ever watched. Malkin really, really hates Amanda.

You know, the first time I saw this, I thought I read (and somewhat more accurately) "Malkin really, really hates America."

The Duke post was inexcusable, esp. considering how
uniformed Amanda is.

Really? What kind of uniform does she wear?

Anthony, that too.

Rick,

Don't cross your fingers hoping for a response from me.

Thanks.

Ok, that was hysterical: the cat actually whipped his head around and goggle-eyed the speaker upon hearing Malkin's vitriol. Funniest thing I've seen in a week.

Oh, and Michelle hon. Pour yourself a nice drink and try to relax. Better make it a double.

Aeroman, I didn't mean to attribute a crazy position to you personally. I know you believe that race and class had a lot to do with the disgraceful federal response to New Orleans.

(although there's something odd about calling Amanda a "red-meat propagandist")

A steamed broccoli propagandist?

Any chance this picture can come down? It makes me want to throw up every time I see it! PLEASE!!

Incidentally, I don't mean to be too critical of another Pandagonian, but I think that Pam Spaulding is a better example of a pure, red-meat-for-the-base propagandist type, which is why I've typically found her posts to be less interesting than Amanda's.

Really? I always thought it was the other way around: Pam did the standard liberal criticism of Dominionists for being insane and the Democrats for being Dominionist enablers, while Amanda engaged in the denser things like reviewing The Omnivore's Dilemma.

Aeroman,

Dude, c'mon -- this is a blog. We're all dweebs.

I can't speak for Lindsay, but since you invoked my name again, I will reiterate my earlier apology about being mistaken on the whole "scrubbing" thing. And I'll even cop to generally being more willing to give real-life friends (like, for instance, Amanda) the benefit of the doubt, though I'm not sure doing that necessarily makes me some kind of horrible stuck-up snobby nepotistic asshat.

I got 50 bucks for Amanda if she gets fired from Edwards, to help with moving expenses since she just moved to take the job. If Edwards still has her working for him in a month, his campaign gets the money. Anyone else with me?

I'm with you only if Obama screws up on Iran. Right now I'm still for Obama even if Edwards keeps Amanda, because not bombing Iran is more important to me than standing by someone who'd unfairly attacked. However, if Edwards does keep Amanda, he'll regain enough credibility in my view that my tolerance for waffling on Iran on Obama's part will drop to zero. If Edwards fires Amanda, Obama will need to say something at least as bad as what Edwards said about Iran for me to stop rooting for him; if Edwards keeps Amanda, even something like the relatively okay portions of the interview with Ezra will be enough for me to switch.

That, and it's illegal for me to donate to political candidates. But if it's important enough I can funnel the money through an American citizen.

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