Juan Williams’ Dismissal

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headshot_williams.jpgEvery once in a while, I find myself on Fox News and have to admit that I’m glad I’m there. Fox is sort of like Arlington or Alexandria for me — over the river — when I spend most of my time in DC Central. It’s a good thing to hear what others are thinking and how they are framing policy challenges, and I get a feel for this when I hang out in the Fox green room where I’ve met Gary Bauer, talked with Bill Kristol, David Frum, and yes, Juan Williams.
I don’t know Williams very well — but remember when he worked hard with the Hitachi Foundation and other Japanese firms I had partnered with in the 1980s to reverse growing anti-black bigotry that was rising in Japan.
It would have been very easy to imagine Japanese business executives or regular Japanese expatriots who had moved to Southern California and were getting their first dose of street crime, petty theft, and gang violence to say something like:

I get worried and nervous when I see black people walking my direction, or in the supermarket or in my children’s school…

This was the kind of bigotry, softly deployed, that Juan Williams went to Japan to try and reverse. In Los Angeles, he spoke for me at a major forum on race, identity and understanding sponsored by the Hitachi Foundation and Japan America Society of Southern California.
That’s why his comments about Muslims are so disheartening.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

69 comments on “Juan Williams’ Dismissal

  1. nadine says:

    States fund the CPB too, not just the feds.

    Reply

  2. questions says:

    You see a billion, I see 90 million. One of us is wrong.
    The quotation runs as follows:
    “Let

    Reply

  3. nadine says:

    Money is indeed fungible, but there is one simple way to police this: defund CPB as part of an austerity package. In today’s world of cable and internet, there is no need for government to pay $1 billion for broadcasting. Plenty of foundations of all stripes can fund broadcast projects.

    Reply

  4. questions says:

    Money is fungible and all….
    So Congress will attempt to require that no dollars from the authorization go towards fees….
    Ugh. Indirect money is indirect. Money is fungible. There’s no real way to police this.
    The harm will come to people in places w/o a lot of radio choice who don’t have great internet and who don’t have cable or satellite radio….
    Rural, repub areas with little radio — their stations will make some cuts….
    The endless punishing over issues like this is a sad and silly legislative game. The outrage is being kept alive for no good reason. Am hopeful that this fades as an issue before Congr. returns and someone thinks, “hey, great way to get 5 more votes…..”

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  5. nadine says:

    questions, you cited nothing that does not agree with what I said: CPB money goes to public radio stations, public radio stations pay membership dues to NPR, NPR pretends their funding has nothing to do with the CPB. Disingenuous at best.
    As for the Q&A, it ignores the fact that Mara Liasson has also been called on the carpet for her Fox appearances. NPR doesn’t like its people showing up on Fox, esp. if they show up on Fox and stray off the liberal reservation. It’s not me saying that, it’s Howard Kurtz (late of the WP, now of the Daily Beast). Howard Kurtz says that if Juan Williams had expressed the exact same opinion on Charlie Rose, he would still be working for NPR. When you’ve lost Howard Kurtz, you’ve lost center-left media respectability. Which is why this brouhaha won’t be going away as fast as you’d like it to.

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  6. questions says:

    I’ve not heard anyone say you can’t say that there’s some component of Islamism within the terrorist network. BUT I have been reading my new Pape book and he does seem to find evidence, a fair amount of evidence even, that religiosity is less of an issue than is nationalism and territorialism.
    I gotta admit, Pape cites evidence. Evidence good. Evidence make sense. Evidence help prove stuff. Evidence, evidence, evidence. Good. Me like.
    “Obey” is perhaps strong. Maybe they “suggested” and maybe a very risk averse group, I dunno, avoids risk.
    And besides, really, Juan Williams is fine after all of this. Maybe he was on a job interview! He certainly did what Fox likes best!
    ***
    Read Jonathan Bernstein. He’s good.
    ****
    And this:
    “Here is part of the Q&A:
    Q: Okay. What happened?
    A: Let

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  7. nadine says:

    “And as for CAIR– I don’t care. It’s as crazed to me to blame any single pressure group for this firing as it is to blame AIPAC for any act of firing.” (questions)
    CAIR does what it does and everybody knows what it does. The blame goes to those who spread its lies and obey its behests. CAIR claims to be representing American Muslims and to be funded by them. Neither is true. It is a Muslim Brotherhood front group and gets almost all its money from undisclosed foreign sources.

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  8. nadine says:

    “By the way, “instruments of indoctrination” is a little drama queen, n’est-ce pas?” (questions)
    Not at all. Laying down rules of discourse where you must never mention certain facts – like who committed 9/11, who commits 99% of suicide terrorism today and why – and at the behest of the apologists of radical Islamist suicide terrorism, too – is no longer free discourse but political indoctrination.

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  9. nadine says:

    questions, I already explained NPR’s funding earlier on this thread. NPR claims the funds they receive from their member station dues are not taxpayer funded, when those member stations get about 20% of their income from the Center for Public Broadcasting, which is entirely tax payer funded. ‘Scuse me, how did the money lose its taxpayer origins just because it got to NPR at one remove? This is disingenuous, to say the least.
    Between the states and the feds, CPB gets about $1 billion a year, all of which winds up on PBS or NPR.

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  10. questions says:

    By the way, “instruments of indoctrination” is a little drama queen, n’est-ce pas?

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  11. questions says:

    nadine, identify the gov’t support of NPR please. Everything I’ve read about this suggests the money is only indirect via the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, is 1-2% of revenue and is program specific, not general revenue. But if you find a source that differs, please post….
    Oh, nadine, someone reminded a stack of readers that Palin demanded Rahm Emmanuel’s resignation over the word “retarded.”
    Conservatives complain about “tea bagger” and enough other perceived (and intended)slights that I feel no pity for a conservative offended.
    It wasn’t lefty political correctness people that taught us not to be name callers and nasty in public. It was our collective MOM. If you had a mom, I’m sure she taught you not to call people nasty names. Welcome to “PC land.”
    PC is basically civility with a longer name. In a society made up of a lot of people who don’t know each other and who have grounds for mutual suspicion by virtue of difference, it’s not a bad idea to limit name calling, to realize that it’s easier to harm others than you realize. So control your impulses, let you frontal lobe flag fly! It’s good for all of us if we pay a little attention to the pain we cause and try to cause less of it.
    And as for CAIR– I don’t care. It’s as crazed to me to blame any single pressure group for this firing as it is to blame AIPAC for any act of firing.
    People who have the bad fortune to make remarks that are either spliced out of context or are heard properly whose remarks end up public end up fired sometimes because groups that depend on certain funding structures (universities, newspapers, radio, charities) cannot afford to alienate anyone.
    And honestly, this is such small potatoes. The guy’s a millionaire. He’s in way better shape than I am! Maybe I should start harboring odd thoughts about other people. But I just don’t. Oh well.
    Probably it would be a good idea to get over some of the off-the-cuff remark damning because with the constancy of microphones we’re all going to be recorded saying some damnedfool thing. But we’re not going to get over it til the funding sources change. Or til some beloved figure really fucks up. Bill Clinton made it safe for sex for the most part. Vitter seems to be ok, Spitzer’s on his way back, Dick Morris blobs along. One day dumbfuck remarks will go the way of blue dresses and pubic hairs on coke cans….

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  12. nadine says:

    “Because [NPR’s] support is partially corporate and partially listener-driven, they have to have a well-functioning frontal lobe as it were.” (questions)
    Their frontal lobes are operating in their own PC bubble, questions. (I have listed to them for many years and I know where they are coming from.) NPR is also partially tax-dollar supported. Though I suspect not for long.
    “What Williams seems to have done is crossed something of a line that he probably didn’t even know was one of those lines. Indeed, maligning Islam is often thought to be one of the more acceptable things to do. Poor guy.”
    No need to pity him; NPR’s loss is Fox News’ gain — and Juan Williams’ too.
    “And this crossing of an informal and hard to discern line, of a line that exists in an ever-ready-to-please-and-never-to-offend funding structure is precisely what makes him Fox material.
    Fox seems to pride itself on line-crossing.”
    Who drew the lines, questions? and for what purpose? Ans: The Left drew the lines of Political Correctness, in an effort to silence all non-Left opinions as bigoted and beyond the pale. Fox isn’t playing by those rules! Nor am I.
    But I’ll tell you this: NPR really screwed the pooch in firing Juan Williams: sharp, well known, well liked, author of many books on the Civil Rights struggle, as unbigoted as they come, and as a bonus you might say, one of the very few black commentators on NPR, whose lineup is now whiter than Fox News’.
    What’s more, at whose behest did NPR fire Williams? At CAIR’s behest! They obeyed the commands of a Muslim Brotherhood front group (the unindicted co-conspirator of the Holy Land Foundation case) to declare that nobody who works for them should ever be allowed to say he worries about Muslim terrorism on airplanes. Never mind the facts of just how many attempted and successful bombings of planes there have been in the last 25 years, and all by Muslims acting in the name of radical Islam. You won’t hear that on NPR; nor will you hear a word breathed against the Muslim Brotherhood, whose leader, Mohammed Badi, just openly declared war on the US.
    Nope, NPR went a bridge too far in firing a notable liberal for refusing to toe their PC party line.
    There’s an Inside Washington video linked on Real Clear Politics today where Charles Krauthammer slams NPR’s hypocrisy. Nina Totenburg is there too; her embarrassment is obvious and she says the decision was not popular on the news floor but says she won’t say more. Obviously she’s against the decision too but doesn’t want to dis her own management on TV.
    I do hope Barry Rubin is right, and this incident makes the liberal Left examine how their own institutions have been hijacked by the far Left and turned into instruments of indoctrination.

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  13. questions says:

    Oops, I think I have some network confusion regarding comedy shows — my mistake! Family Guy is Fox, and so is the Simpsons, but South Park is on Comedy Central.
    Sorry!
    Maybe I should watch some TV more often! On an actual tv, instead of just seeing the occasional clip on TPM or Huff…..

    Reply

  14. questions says:

    I have a radio in the car. And a cd player. Gotta admit, cds beat out the radio almost always, with the exception of a little hiphop here and there.
    So who is Juan Williams to me? Absolutely no one.
    What’s NPR to me? Not a thing in my world.
    So why did Juan Williams lose his NPR gig and pick up a handsomely paid Fox spot?
    It’s really simple, actually.
    There are nasty things we all are capable of thinking at one time or another. Mostly we censor ourselves. Mostly, we’re polite, we pretend not to have dark thoughts, anti-social feelings, a desire to destroy what’s around us or to say something offensive just because it’s fun to do. Our frontal lobes are undamaged so we control our impulses in mixed company. And some of us have them under so much control that we don’t really have so many dark impulses even when we’re alone.
    NPR is mixed company. They suck up money from individual and corporate sources, they get nothing from the gov’t or so I’ve read (member stations get some production support, mostly individual grants for program-production).
    Because their support is partially corporate and partially listener-driven, they have to have a well-functioning frontal lobe as it were.
    Now, a well-functioning frontal lobe is a cultural production, not a fixed and absolute. Sometimes and in some places certain kinds of nastiness are well within bounds, and other kinds are not. The key is to know one’s cultural rules (always unwritten and always shifting.)
    What Williams seems to have done is crossed something of a line that he probably didn’t even know was one of those lines. Indeed, maligning Islam is often thought to be one of the more acceptable things to do. Poor guy.
    And this crossing of an informal and hard to discern line, of a line that exists in an ever-ready-to-please-and-never-to-offend funding structure is precisely what makes him Fox material.
    Fox seems to pride itself on line-crossing. Watch a few episodes of South Park and Family Guy and the Simpsons and of course their talker guys and you can see the adolescent male fantasy of crossing every line there is.
    What we know about adolescent males is that their frontal lobes have been damaged by too many head blows and too much underdevelopment. The goal of an adolescent male is ever to cross lines, challenge authority and rules, to be improper. It’s the fantasy of every middle schooler to do some serious damage and to take nothing seriously except himself, which he takes very seriously.
    So Fox, in all its “wisdom” acts like a middle schooler of the male type.
    Williams gave in to a silly middle school outlook (fear of an Islamic dude/dudette on a plane? Seriously? Does he have no contact with people who “look” “Muslim” such that the norm is the 19 guys on 9/11 and not just average dudes on the street? Where the hell does he live?!)
    He crosses a line by speaking something that clearly some people feel, but should have gotten over by now (how many billion Muslims on the planet and how many explosions? Compare to others, please?)
    And NPR in its need to please to continue vacuuming up money fires his butt and Fox picks that same butt up.
    Yup.
    Can we get back to something that matters, something a little less middle schoolish?
    There’s not a big message here. The impulse to say things, the impulse to do damage control, and the impulse to be middle school transgressiony are all completely within the range of what we can expect.
    Why not instead worry about Ginni Thomas?!!!!!!

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  15. DakotabornKansan says:

    Deep Peace of the running wave to you…

    Reply

  16. Dan Kervick says:

    So are you going to tell me, Nadine, that Summers and Geithner are also on the left? If so, then I think you really need to read a history book.
    Are Stiglitz and Krugman far left socialists? No, they are conventional Keynesians representing more or less traditional, old-timey American center-left capitalism. They are the heirs to the Rooseveltian tradition. And yet even they have been locked out by the centrist Obama administration.
    For you, if someone supports gay marriage and take-a-Muslim-to-lunch week, then they are thereby on the “left”, even if they are advocates of Chicago school economics. I don’t find that a useful way of classifying things.

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  17. Neo Controll says:

    “But hoo boy, if NPR is not left to you, then you really are a socialist.”
    No Nadine, you are a right wing reactionary neocon clone, with all the arrogance to prove it. You have swallowed the right wing mindset. It would be a case study to find out what in your gene predisposed you that way. But I expect it is a fundamental hate of others.
    That you think NPR is ‘left” is just more proof. The ‘right’ has skidded off the continent; everything looks left to you.

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  18. nadine says:

    Dan, you don’t get whom NPR is carrying water for — it’s Obama! They are doing their level best to pretend there is some invisible recover underway (just as, conversely, they badmouthed the economy all the way through the Bush admin – to hear them back then, 5% growth was the sure sign of a depression). Pretending Obama’s economic experts know what they are doing is merely the corollary. They won’t demonize the Wall St boys until they get their marching orders from Obama.
    But hoo boy, if NPR is not left to you, then you really are a socialist.

    Reply

  19. Dan Kervick says:

    Neither the left nor the far left fired Williams. It was NPR, the bastion of smug PC, non-left, toney bourgeois neoliberalism. I doubt there were even a lot of “calls” for Williams head. Most people just woke up and heard he’d been fired. Personally, I think they pulled the trigger too fast. When people were actually conspiring to deprive Muslims of their fundamental religious liberties, or humiliate and intimidate them into refraining from exercising them, NPR was all about journalistic judiciousness and giving everyone their say. But then one guy says something that, while not very courteous or nice, is just an embarrassing confession of how a lot of people feel, and all hell breaks loose.
    Meanwhile, NPR has been carrying lots of water since the recession began for the finance boys and austerity mongers. You ever hear “Planet Money”? Listen to that for a few weeks and tell me NPR is on the “left”. A couple of snotty brats dishing out jejune Econ 101 and “Freakonomics” lessons on why the neoliberal market economy and the nature of incentives are just too precious and complex for heavy-handed progressive and redistributive interventions.
    Of course, as I said before, I don’t like this contemporary habit of media figures wearing the hat of an objective journalist in one venue, and then going out to dish opinion in another media venue. But Williams is hardly the most egregious offender on that score. Cokie Roberts has been expressing her own personal opinions for years on ABC, surely some of which were “controversial”, without any penalty that I am aware of.

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  20. nadine says:

    “You can be sure that the Juan Willams’ mess will be a cause celebre when it comes time for funding issues to be discussed in Congress.
    But if our area is at all typical, public radio receives virtually no funding from the federal budget,and is mostly locally funded. It is actually a misnomer to call it ‘public’ radio, and it seems like that sobriquet has be mainly an artifact maintained artificially to provide a convenient for those who value having another target to shoot at. Shoot at, that is, in the name of ‘fighting big government’ etc.” (Celtic Soul)
    Celtic, this is both true and false. True in that NPR gets most of its funds from corporate grants and member station dues, only about 2% in direct CPB or NEA grants; false in that member stations get on average about 20% of their funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which is one of those quasi-private government entities that gets all its funding from Congressional appropriations. So NPR is just using the local radio stations to hide the amount the money they get from the taxpayer.

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  21. nadine says:

    Wigwag, I think you’ll find Barry Rubin’s take on Juan Williams interesting – Rubin points out that this is the first time the Leftist inquisition chose an unimpeachable liberal for its target, instead of right-wing people like Glenn Beck:
    “Western society depends on open discussion and reliable watchdog institutions to preserve democracy, come up with the best possible ideas, and maintain civility. But now due to ideology and arrogance, the left-pretending-to-be-liberals has gone too far. People who have swallowed all of the often-false claims about conservatives–their ideological and political rivals–start to ask questions. Up until now, the majority of moderate liberals have said, in effect, that it didn’t matter if “bad” people were treated unfairly.
    An analogy here is the way that Republicans and conservatives were generally tolerant toward McCarthyism between 1950, when he went after the Truman Administration and liberals, until 1954 when the senator attacked the U.S. army, the respected General George Marshall, and even President Dwight Eisenhower himself, in a way that exposed his recklessness and the fact that anyone could be accused of treason.
    The only thing worse than a witch hunt is a witch hunt being cynically manipulated to intimidate large social groups, open discussion, and courageous individuals. Today, one cannot help but once again hear the echoes of Martin Niemoller’s famous poem, which ends, “Then they came for me/and by that time no one was left to speak up.” Thus, moderate liberals may well laugh when they hear Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell, who has been smeared, whatever her very real shortcomings, say, “I’m you.” But for real liberals, Juan Williams does fit that description….
    Make no mistake, the Williams case is a landmark in getting real liberals to realize the extent that their institutions have been taken over by the far left, which has used this power to trash professional ethics and transform entertainment, educational, and media institutions into organs of lies and indoctrination. Coupled with the coming Democratic defeats at the polls, it reminds real, moderate liberals that being pushed too far to the left is suicidal. None of them are safe, as intellectuals or as politicians from attack and unemployment, respectively.
    This is not mainly a liberals versus conservatives battle, it is a struggle between the far left–sometimes allied but always soft regarding radical anti-American forces abroad–against both real liberals and non-extremist conservatives. If radical forces abroad are going to be countered and defeated, this battle is going to have to be ought, too. The Williams’ case defines the issues precisely.”
    http://rubinreports.blogspot.com/

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  22. Kathleen says:

    NPR has the balls to talk about “ethics” and “standards” they allow one unsubstantiated claim about Iran to be repeated over and over again. They refer to Hamas as terrorist and illegal Israeli settlers to be called settlers. These people are terrorist.
    Juan Williams was clearly in the wrong. Give the man a warning. When will NPR stop allowing one lie after the next to be repeated about Iran. Terri Gross is one of the worst offenders. I have not only heard her allow guest to repeat these lies, I have heard her repeat them herself.
    Have heard Scott Simon say “Iran wants to wipe Israel off the map”
    Neil Conan has allowed John Bolton to repeat lies about Iran. No challenges.
    O.K. smack Juan down for the Islamaphobic comment. But what I want to know is when is NPR going to stop allowing these unsubstantiated claims about Iran to stop being endlessly repeated on many of their shows?
    What kind of “ethics” and “standards” are those?

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  23. Kathleen says:

    Juan Williams was clearly in the wrong. But give the man a warning.
    What is especially absurd to me is that NPR has allowed one lie after the next to be repeated about Iran. They have said that Juan’s statement does not stand up to their “standards” and “ethics” in journalism. Oy vey
    I have heard NPR

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  24. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Interestingly, several NPR stations around the country are reporting that the firing of Williams has affected the pledge drives that are currently being conducted by many NPR member stations. Some stations report that since the firing, fundraising has been trending in a negative direction while a few actually report that since Williams was fired, fundraising has picked up”
    Most people, when offering this kind of “news”, offer links, (a source), to go with their comment. But not Wiggie. One wonders what “news” she has doctored to fit the narrative she endeavors to sell us.
    “Several”, (3? 15?), “some”, (1? 100?), “a few”….blablahblah….
    I would bet, if she deems fit to give us her source, the actual source is not near as vague in its reportage, and that wiggie’s “wording” is somewhat disingenuous in its presentation.
    But hey, I could be all wet. I’ve been wrong before, of course. But if these numerical descriptions actually came from NPR, why would they be so ethereal?

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  25. WigWag says:

    Interestingly, several NPR stations around the country are reporting that the firing of Williams has affected the pledge drives that are currently being conducted by many NPR member stations. Some stations report that since the firing, fundraising has been trending in a negative direction while a few actually report that since Williams was fired, fundraising has picked up.
    Meanwhile Frank Gaffney is reporting that NPR may have been influenced to fire Williams by CAIR (Council of American-Islamic Relations). CAIR is the front group for the Muslim Brotherhood in the United States.
    So far, Gaffney’s proof seems quite sparse to me. He claims that CAIR is the recipient of a multimillion dollar grant from the Government of Saudi Arabia designed to fight the negative portrayal of Muslims in the United States. Gaffney says that CAIR used this money to pressure NPR into firing Williams.
    It will be interesting to see if Gaffney can actually come up with any proof.

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  26. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Why is it, I wonder, that the right is so much more tolerant of diversity of opinion than the left?” – Nadine
    And I imagine she actually types this shit with a straight face.
    “This may get me banned from TWN forever. Oh well, it’s been a good run. See y’all” – DonS
    It occurs to me that it would serve the interests of those she represents to see this comment section shut down. Therein may lay the reasoning for her to post comments that are, (as Dan pointed out), “absurd”, and as irritating as scraping your fingernail over an old used chalkboard. She is simply trying to drive us all as batshit crazy as she obviously is, in the hopes that one of us will flip out and threaten to nuke, behead, or tickle her to death. I caution all the commenters to be aware of this sinister plot, and act accordingly. If you feel the tinges of Nadine induced anxiety or neurosis, I recommend suspending your TWN activities a sufficient amount of time to recover.
    DonS, you have obviously passed this point, and may not be able to recover without proffessional help. Please do not attempt to self-medicate, as it will only serve to worsen your symptoms. I hope the moderators of this blog will be understanding, and realize that you are the victim of an insidious zionist psyops operation.
    From personal experience, I can attest to the sinister intent of Nadine’s efforts. I have avoided falling prey to her nefarious intentions by composing all my comments while lying naked, and striking the keys with my nose. And even that technique was failing me until I discovered her Irritation Rays could not penetrate the walls of my bathtub.

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  27. nadine says:

    “Steve remembers when Juan Williams worked hard with the Hitachi Foundation and other Japanese firms to reverse growing anti-black bigotry that was rising in Japan

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  28. DakotabornKansan says:

    Curious people are interesting people, I wonder why that is.

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  29. DakotabornKansan says:

    Political Correctness is the ultimate tool in the liberal

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  30. DakotabornKansan says:

    For Fox News? Why Juan, it profit a man nothing to give his soul for the whole world

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  31. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Here is what an honest common-sensical media opinion piece looks like. You will not find such a piece in our American media. In fact, should an American journalist attempt such a piece, likely it would cost them their job.
    http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2010/10/20101019122641423763.html
    US: The dishonest broker
    Despite high expectation for Barack Obama, the US president has not convinced Israel to cease settlement construction.
    Avi Shlaim Last Modified: 21 Oct 2010 12:46 GMT
    Email ArticlePrint ArticleShare ArticleSend Feedback
    Despite meek calls for ‘restraint’, Israeli settlement construction continues on Palestinian land [REUTERS]
    The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been both a major concern of American diplomacy since 1967 and the arena of persistent failure.
    There are many reasons for America

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  32. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Its hilarious watching Nadine and wiggie posture as knights for free speech and credible media.
    Of course, if free speech and credible media means you’re gonna criticize Israel, off with your head, here’s your walkin’ papers, you’re nuthin’ but a filthy anti-semite.
    Nadine and Wig-wag won’t be happy until the narrative is completely controlled by some oxi-contin swallowing asshole maggot like Rush Limbaugh, or some skirt lifting chauvanist like O’reilly.
    And just tune in to the absolute horseshit that passes for a script these days when the so-called “Fourth Estate” reports on all things Israel.
    Yet here’s Nadine and wiggie, in all their hypocritical splendor, trying to convince us that they actually give a shit about truth or journalistic integrity.

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  33. nadine says:

    Jim Geraighty just quipped on the radio: PBS is the network of “All Things Considered” — but apparently while all things can be considered, not all things can be discussed.
    NPR just took the 20% side of a 80/20 disagreement, with the American public 80% on the other side. Their timing did the Dems no favor, either.
    Definitely time to take the “Public” out of National Public Radio. Let them be liberal on their own dime.

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  34. Celtic soul says:

    You can be sure that the Juan Willams’ mess will be a cause celebre when it comes time for funding issues to be discussed in Congress.
    But if our area is at all typical, public radio receives virtually no funding from the federal budget,and is mostly locally funded. It is actually a misnomer to call it ‘public’ radio, and it seems like that sobriquet has be mainly an artifact maintained artificially to provide a convenient for those who value having another target to shoot at. Shoot at, that is, in the name of ‘fighting big government’ etc.

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  35. WigWag says:

    An interesting effect of the Williams firing is likely to be another effort to end government funding for National Public Radio. If, as expected, the Republicans take over the House of Representatives after the November election, it is hard to see them not using the Williams firing as an excuse to defund NPR. This time, there’s a very good chance that the effort will succeed.
    There have already been numerous calls from Congressional Republicans for NPR CEO Vivian Schiller (she

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  36. nadine says:

    DonS, thank you for that demonstration of the modern liberal opinion of free speech: they’re against it.
    As evidence, today most of Fox News rallied to Juan Williams’ defense, as did Rush Limbaugh. Where were the liberal defenders of free speech? Nowhere to be found.
    Modern liberals are for Political Correctness, not free speech. Or, ‘free speech for me but not for thee’.

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  37. DonS says:

    This may get me banned from TWN forever. Oh well, it’s been a good run. See y’all.
    Nadine: fuck you.

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  38. nadine says:

    Dakota, the label of liberalism has been hijacked by the illiberal allies of totalitarianism for some time now.
    If liberals were still liberal, you’d hear them speaking out forcefully for the human rights of women, gays, and Christians and other minorities in the Muslim world. Do they? Nope, PC forbids it.

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  39. PissedOffAmerican says:

    You can buy an awful lot of bullshit for 2 million bucks. People lie, murder, torture and rape for a whole lot less. So who is to be suprised when some fuckin’ scumbag jumps at the opportunity to sell his soul for a cool two million?
    And when hawking propaganda pays so well, are we to be suprised at the low value placed on the truth?
    Eenie meanie, miney mo, get fired, or get rich…..

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  40. DonS says:

    “Fox just signed Williams to a 3 year $2 million contract.” (wwag)
    Saw that. Chump change to flog the ‘story’ and get the mouth breathers all hyped.

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  41. anon2 says:

    “anon”, yeah sure.

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  42. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “It is the last sentence that nails it about Rinehart Video Productions,

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  43. anon says:

    If you watched the whole video you would see
    Williams arguing for tolerance, he used his
    personal experience as a preliminary statement.
    Then again, watching the whole video would violate
    the liberal principle of Only Liberals Have
    Context.

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  44. WigWag says:

    It didn’t take Juan Williams long to make up for the income he lost when he was ousted by NPR. How much could they have paid anyway?
    Fox just signed Williams to a 3 year $2 million contract.
    This is from Politico
    “Fox News moved swiftly to turn the controversy over Juan Williams

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  45. DakotabornKansan says:

    The label of liberalism is hardly a sentence to public ignominy.

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  46. DonS says:

    Oh just go read the whole Glenn Greenwald piece. The guy’s got a head on his shoulders:
    http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/

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  47. DonS says:

    “This kind of ignorance is destroying this country.” (poa)
    But it sells papers.
    And therein lies some significance. Why, one might ask, would minority in residence Williams, choose to make any kind of anti-Muslim interpretable statement on Fox? Might it be that for Fox the Muslim ‘constituency’ is a throwaway category and in fact the anti-Muslim constituency just turns up the volume? Now Juan may have left himself some room for plausible deniability but just why in the hell would such a deep thinker allow his own inner redneck to be used in such a fashion? Even IF his reactions were ‘normal’ and ‘typical’? Just cant help but share his inner neurosis with redneck America? Come on.

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  48. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Liberals always”…..blablahblah…….
    “Most liberals complain about”….blahblablah…
    “Most liberals aren’t”….blahblahblah….
    This kind of ignorance is destroying this country.

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  49. DonS says:

    Think Progress take including the predictable, horrified, reaction from the usual hypocrites:
    “NPR never called for William’s firing . . . At the same time, NPR

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  50. Rinehart Video Productions says:

    Liberals always find a way to amaze people. Don goes off on the war here which has nothing to do with NPR and Juan Williams. And Dakota, if people are running to Fox News, why is that? There has to be a reason? I’ve never talked to or seen trailer park hillbillies in person or on TV that get their news from Fox News.
    And Cato: Juan a DC flack? Juan a DC publicity agent? Really? Please. While Juan is a liberal, he still is smart enough and would recognize facts about things instead of mindless, lying spin. And Don, you say most every time you saw Juan on TV he acted like he was following a script? Are you sure you were watching Juan Williams? I never saw that from him. He always looked and sounded like he was speaking his mind.
    Most liberals complain about every-little-thing that might offend, doesn’t sound right, might upset somebody, or might hurt peoples feelings. It’s endless with most all of them. Juan said on O’Reilly “Political correctness can lead to some kind of paralysis where you don’t address reality”. Very true Juan. Most liberals aren’t living in reality.
    NPR especially is not living in reality with this insane decision to dismiss Williams. I mean they didn’t even have the guts to face him mono o mono. Even the liberal poster girl Whoopi said firing Juan was wrong. I’m reading everywhere online that this decision will come back to bite NPR down the road. Wow, I’m sure a lot of conservatives would love to see that.

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  51. DakotabornKansan says:
  52. Montana says:

    Good for NPR, Juan Williams slant belongs to “Fake News” with the rest of the failed political candidstes Palin, Huckabee, or should I say the 2012 GOP Presidential contenders. They are not racist they are just the good old boys. They are the bunch that keep saying that they are scared of BLACKS, scared of ASIANS, sacred of LATINOS, scared of the GAYS and now they are scared of Muslims. So long Johnny,don’t let the door hit you. I love that you went crying to “Fake News” and played the victim card, I guess its another “it is a high-tech lynching”.

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  53. samuelburke says:

    fire Williams fire Rick sanchez fire Helen Thomas..i say fire them all
    and lets allow americans what can and cant be talked about in
    america.
    the economy is the thing that will wake up americans…and foreign
    policy does not stop at the waters edge.

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  54. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Ms. Byrne…….
    I can’t help but wonder if you laud the “honest conversation” of the line of journalists who have been fired, lost their careers, for criticising Israel. Or Rather, who spoke the truth about the coke-snorting AWOL monkey felon George Bush.
    I didn’t find William’s comments all that offensive, either. He is simply giving voice to the fears many Americans have, with no small irony, due to the Fox News narrative. I have no doubt many Americans HAVE swallowed the shit you folks peddle, and, as a result, do have very real fears when one of those nasty heathen muslimes board an aircraft. But its a shame that fear doesn’t extend to ALL the world’s racist religious wackjobs that kill Americans with impunity. You probably don’t have any film of any of our Muslim allies shooting American citizens in the head, execution style, do you? But there is such a film of the Israelis doing EXACTLY that. That doesn’t bother you just a teensy weensy little bit? How long do you think Blitzer or O’Reilly would hold their jobs if they aired that film and reported on it?
    Oh, don’t worry, they’ll do no such thing. They might be full of shit, but they aren’t crazy.
    Its kinda different out here in the real world, though. Theres places in East Bakersfield, or in the outlying communities where you JUST DON’T GO after dark. And being the racist realist I am certainly going to be accused of being, I am not hesitant to say that both of these areas I mention are unsafe because of MEXICAN STREET GANGS.
    (OMG!!! I said it!!!)
    And, uh, do you think Palestinians would be wise to stroll the streets of the more radical Jewish settlements after dark?? It wouldn’t be because they are liable to be attacked by JEWS, would it? Or perhaps it wouldn’t be a good idea for Jews to stroll the streets of the Palestinian villages that have had their orchards set fire to, or their lands flooded by raw sewage, because they might just get attacked by pissed off MUSLIMS, eh?
    This business of not being able to mention who hates, (or/and fears), who, and why, because its politically incorrect, (albiet true), is really kind of silly. If I get stranded in downtown Lamont at three in the morning, it ain’t gonna be a lilly white mormon housewife that slits my throat because they’ve taken a liking to my ostrich skin Tony Llahmas. On the contrary, you can bet those boots are now gonna be admired in spanish. I’m a racist for realizing that?
    So who the hell knows when mankind is gonna get its shit together and stop giving us all reasons to hate each other? But one thing is for sure, its really pretty dumb not to talk about it honestly, because it just pushes the solution further down the road. Its pretty telling that we all justify our own hatreds and fears, while naturally assuming that the hatreds and fears pointed in our direction are entirely unfounded. Just read some of the SHIT that rolls off Nadine’s keyboard 24/7. And ya might wanna query a few hundred thousand Iraqi widows and orphans about just who it is politically correct to hate and fear. And you’re gonna tell me its without good reason?
    Too bad about technology. Perhaps a few more centuries of shoving spears into each other’s eyes or hacking heads off with axes mighta cooled our bloodlust somewhat. A real shame we can’t hand these vampires like Bin Laden, Bush, Netanyahu, or Hillary Clinton a machete and send them forth to slay their enemies, while leaving us out of the process. Perhaps after a bloody duel or two they’d be far less prone to inciting us all into hating the boogie men d’jour they’re so fond of conjuring up.

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  55. Neo Controll says:

    Nadine, NPR concern troll as well as queen all-purpose-right-wing-zealot troll. Whatta gal. Throw her an animal cracker.

    Reply

  56. nadine says:

    Bill, the left in this country is for PC, not free speech. PC is the demand that anybody not holding a liberal viewpoint censor themselves on pain of being called a racist, bigot, homophobe or Islamophobe. So they are for free speech on condition conservatives stay silent.
    Interestingly, Whoopi Goldberg on the View called Juan Williams’ firing “a total mistake” and told NPR to “get yourself together”.
    I think NPR really stepped in it this time. Inside one week, they accepted $2 million from George Soros, and fired Juan Williams for acknowledging that there is a Muslim war against America. Note: Williams was talking about his own feelings and added all the usual caveats about Muslim extremists being a minority. It didn’t help him. To top it all, it’s NPR pledge week.
    I think NPR just cost themselves their Federal funding. It’s a low-hanging fruit for cuts in the next Congress, and a majority of voters won’t object.

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  57. Mary Byrne says:

    Juan Williams was on Fox to comment, not to report news. He was not talking about being in a supermarket or school. He commented about being on an airplane. Airplanes which were used to do terrible things to families in this country, by a group of people who have sworn to continue the violence. No bigotry or racism, just Juan Williams giving voice to what flashes through the minds of millions of everyday people when they get on a plane. Has anyone reading this ever gotten on a plane since 9/11 and not had that day cross his or her mind?
    Honest conversation. Too bad the media and politicians are so afraid of that.

    Reply

  58. Bill Kiehl says:

    Firing Juan Williams is one of the stupidest things NPR has done in
    a long time. Juan Williams is no bigot and his whole life and body
    of work attest to that. He spoke the same thing that 90 percent of
    American feel every time an obvious young Muslim male boards a
    the plane they are flying. 9-11 is hard to forget but hat doesn’t
    make it right to feel this way. As Williams himself said in the same
    conversation we cannot condemn all Muslims for the acts of a few.
    But this is reality andI see no reason to fire at top journalist for
    speaking the truth. Far better to have Williams explain his
    statement and have a real discussion of this issue on NPR. Steve, I
    thought you had more respect for free speech and honesty. Shame.

    Reply

  59. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Well, when a Presidential Administration can be caught red-handed BRIBING “journalists” to hawk the party line, such as the Bush Administration did, (remember Armstrong, and others?), yet totally escape accountability, WTF do we expect?
    There is this big deal about Fox being whores for the right, but remember, Maddow and Olberman are no less shameless in whoring for the left.
    I too remember when the journalists belonging to the Fourth Estate actually strived for unbiased reporting of the actual news. But those days are over. I find these hacks like Maddow on the left, or Hannity on the right, to be the MOST despicable of human beings, even more so than this garbage that now infects Washington DC masquerading as “representatives of the people”. What more despicable a calling can one have than to be actively working to divide the people by presenting them with propaganda, divisive party talking points, and the presentation of slanted and partisanly biased storylines masquerading as hard news??? These people are scum, and have purposely fostered a news environment that nurtures ignorance and partisan animosity, thereby derailing any hopes the American people can have of forming a concensus that works in their own best interests.
    Interesting that Steve will comment on Williams, and his “role” at Fox News, but never comments on Maddow, and her “role” on MSNBC. They are birds of a feather in many repects, albiet flip sides of the coin. To hawk partisan division is despicable no matter what side of the aisle is shoveling shit.
    I yearn for the days of hard news. I cannot help but believe if we had had a responsible Fourth Estate these last two decades, some of the “heroes” that Maddow and Hannity worship would be in jail where they belong, and our war footprint would be much smaller, if it existed at all.
    I remember, as a kid growing up, the revulsion I held, and was encouraged to hold, for the soviet agency TASS. Well, we have our own TASS now. My, how far we have sunk. We all should hang our heads in shame. This is what the Founding Fathers wanted for us? I don’t think so.

    Reply

  60. Matthew says:

    The problem is Juan Williams refuses to make fine distinctions
    and talking about this issue with some sensitivity. In 1918
    Robert Prager was killed by a Mob because he appeared as
    a German spy. He was German but not a spy. But America
    was in a mood of anti-German paranoia. We need to
    remember the effect of insensitive Rhetoric. At that time there
    were only two news articles that I know of that corrected the
    outrageous claim. Today we must be much more cautious not
    blame ALL Muslims or speak in generalized terms. If we do
    we will not only stir up more bigotry and hate crimes, we will
    also distance the Muslim nations which are our allies.

    Reply

  61. nadine says:

    “To me, the most serious issue raised by this story is that it reminds us of the collapse of the journalistic barrier that people used to insist on between the people whose job it was to report the news and people whose job it was to give their opinion.” (Dan Kervick)
    That has been going on for years, and is far worse on the left than the right. The NYT has been running long barely-disguised editorials on the front pages as news for many years now.
    NPR has been looking to dump Juan Williams for a long time. Although he is plainly left of center, he committed the thought-crime of being able to carry on a civil conversation with conservatives instead of denouncing them as hateful racists as PC demands. His remarks on Muslims show that he is capable of processing reality, no more, no less. He said our dialog is being paralyzed by PC and NPR just proved his point.
    Compare this statement by Jesse Jackson, “There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery

    Reply

  62. Dan Kervick says:

    To me, the most serious issue raised by this story is that it reminds us of the collapse of the journalistic barrier that people used to insist on between the people whose job it was to report the news and people whose job it was to give their opinion. I seem to remember a time when prominent news guys would go for years and years reporting the news on TV, and no one had the slightest idea what their politics or attitudes were. They weren’t even allowed to make a lot of cute faces and reveal their attitudes with facial expressions. These days, there are a lot of reporters like Williams who have a news reporting gig in one venue, and another gig where they are paid to run their mouths about their opinions. If Williams wants to be an O’Reilly, he should just get one of those soapbox shows and bloviate. But then he should stay out the straight news.
    NPR is a little better than most, but I have been noticing lately that in their Morning Edition show, the straight foreign correspondence news stories seem to be getting infused with more and more tendentious opinion content from the reporters.

    Reply

  63. Don Bacon says:

    The atrocities continue.
    CIA drones carried out 21 air strikes in Pakistan in September

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  64. Don Bacon says:

    The prelude:
    Bill O’Reilly, asked him whether he thought the United States was facing a “Muslim dilemma.” O’Reilly said that “jihad, aided and abetted by some Muslim nations, is the biggest threat on the planet.” (Williams agreed and went further.)
    Well, it isn’t, despite the media headlines.
    A headline one sees in the media
    Times Square bomber says US should ‘brace themselves’ for war as he receives life sentence
    A headline one will never see in the media
    Mr Shahzad, the son of a retired Pakistani air force marshal, claimed he had acted out of anger about US military action in Muslim states and mistreatment of Muslims elsewhere.
    Which headline sells more papers?
    Which headline influences shallow thinkers like Juan Williams?

    Reply

  65. DakotabornKansan says:

    Juan Williams comments about Muslims are very disheartening.
    While you were on Fox News only once in a while, Juan Williams, unfortunately, may have been there too often.
    I remember reading William Shirer, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, telling about the experience of how easily one could be taken in by a lying and censored press and radio in a totalitarian state; how surprising and sometimes consternating it was to find that notwithstanding the opportunities one had to learn the facts and despite one

    Reply

  66. Cato the Censor says:

    I’ll echo Don S’s comment. Juan Williams has always been a consummate DC flack, happy to spout the Village consensus without any evidence of original thought on his part. He just went too far this time, but jumping on the Muslim bashing bandwagon is a very popular thing to do so it’s really no wonder he did it. I’m amazed as well that NPR fired him. They’re probably just upset that he wasn’t a little more elliptical and polite about what he said.
    You really should look at this town and the parasites that infest it with a much more critical and jaundiced eye, Mr. Clemons.

    Reply

  67. DonS says:

    Sorry I duplicated your link Steve.
    I’ll just add that I imagine Fox pays Williams a whole lot more than NPR did. A factor?

    Reply

  68. DonS says:

    here’s a WAPO story.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/21/AR2010102101474.html?hpid=topnews
    I don’t think this was an isolated incident, just the most egregious. Most every time I’ve seen Williams on the tube it’s like he’s following a very tight script; the provocative person of color. His ‘defenses’ as the supposed ‘liberal’ person on a panel sound like straw men. I have rarely seen him miss an opportunity to significantly pull a punch. He’s paying a price for a pretty sleazy line he’s walked. I’m just surprised that NPR actually had the principle and guts to fire him.

    Reply

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