Political Hay

Joe Scarborough: Skincolor Liberal

Colin Powell, MSNBC host buy into the tie between progressives and racism.

By 1.15.13

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"Our Constitution is colorblind and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens."
-- Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy quoting Supreme Court Justice John Marshall Harlan at the Kentucky Celebration of the Emancipation Proclamation, 1963

Joe Scarborough and Colin Powell.

Disgraceful.

Absolutely disgusting — not to mention wildly disingenuous. Did I mention historically ignorant?

Right off the bat, as the Daily Caller shows Scarborough parsing Powell’s appearance on Meet the Press, Morning Joe says by way of launching a play for his fellow liberal Republicans: 

But despite his and Powell’s protestations, Scarborough explained that some prominent conservative opinion makers “didn’t listen.” To bolster his case, Scarborough pointed to stories linked on the Drudge Report, including remarks from conservative talkers Sean Hannity and Mark Levin, the latter of whom he did not mention by name.

“They didn’t listen. They went out, they engaged in birtherism, they called the president a racist who hated all white people,” he continued.

Well.

I have contacted Sean Hannity and Mark Levin. The charge, as anyone who has spent a nano-second listening to either would know, is laughably false.

Hannity replied “I was not a birther.” And he “never” called the President of the United States a racist.

To which I would add: Period.

Replied Mark Levin:

“I have no idea what this fool is talking about. I used to think Scarborough was lowering himself by appearing on MSNBC. I now think MSNBC has lowered itself by airing Scarborough. And given the freak show that is that cable network's lineup, that says a lot.”

So.

To watch a former Republican United States Congressman turned TV host blurt such contemptible untruths -- worse a TV host for a network that spews racism and bigotry (as here) repeatedly into the television ether while he sits there silent as a church mouse basking in the glow and mouthing blatant untruths -- is despicable.

Say again: despicable.

To watch it all happen because Scarborough is riffing on a retired general of the United States Army-turned-Secretary of State for playing the race card? And Scarborough joins in?

Shameful.

Let’s get the other card out on the table. The card that is always cause for the race card.

The progressive card.

Does Joe Scarborough have the slightest historical understanding that Democrats/liberals/progressives have spent over two centuries — right up until today — playing the race card to gin up the progressive vote? (As here, here, and, just this last summer, here.)

Does he really not understand that without the race card — liberalism would be a dead letter in America? Obviously not. I’ve met Joe Scarborough. He’s no racist. But to sit back and buy into this worldview as Powell and every other liberal out there presents it is simply ignorant at its worst. The act of a fool.

Race and Progressives have been, as we have noted many times in this space, the ham and eggs of the Democratic Party.

It is a formula. One uses race to scare the hell out of race X, while promising race X will be soothed because of some big government Z.

Examples for Morning Joe?

How many times has Scarborough talked about the Federal Reserve on his show? Social Security? The federal school lunch program? No idea, but I bet lots.

But one can Google away and never find ole Joe talking about the racist formula used to create these programs.

• Not a word about Carter Glass, the creator of the Federal Reserve as a Congressman from Virginia. Glass’s entire political career as state senator, congressman, Secretary of the Treasury and U.S. Senator was based on playing the race card. As the author of the Virginia state constitution in 1902, it was Glass who insisted on both a poll tax and literacy tax being in the revamped constitution. Said Glass, when queried as to if this wasn’t designed to deliberately discriminate against African-Americans:

“Discrimination! Why that is exactly what we propose. To remove every negro voter who can be gotten rid of, legally, without materially impairing the numerical strength of the white electorate.”

Glass succeeded — and as a rising progressive star in the day used race to push both his progressive principles (shared by his fellow racist Woodrow Wilson, who supported Glass’s Fed bill and later made him Treasury Secretary).

• Social Security? Why, Joe never quite gets round to talking about all those racist progressives who scared the hell out of white voters with race so they could stay in office and pass Social Security. A prominent example being old Mississippi Senator Theodore Bilbo, a card-carrying Klan member and deeply proud of creating a program for the old folks.

• School lunches? That would be a program from the great Southern Manifesto Senator Richard Russell, the segregationist Senator from Georgia, who singlehandedly got what is known today as the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act passed in 1946.

Again, as we have noted here, times changed. But not for liberals playing the race card.

Joe made much of playing up to Maxine Waters while he was in Congress. This would be the same Maxine Waters who plays the race and progressive cards to her mostly black district with a directness that would delight Carter Glass as he played it to his white base. She described ex-Los Angeles mayor Richard Riordan, a white liberal Republican, as a “plantation owner.” She demands slavery reparations, has justified attacks on Korean grocers by black residents, accused the CIA (whose director was white) of selling crack cocaine in black neighborhoods and defended attacks on the instability of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as racist. Oops.

And so on…and merrily so on and on.

Representative Waters gets elected and re-elected — and hasn’t met a big government program she doesn’t like.

Then there’s the newest craze for Skincolor Liberals. Latinos. Who can forget the lawsuit against the state of Arizona by the Justice Department filed by the Obama Justice Department over illegal immigration. Tamar Jacoby, president of ImmigrationWorks USA, said the obvious: "But I also think it's a pretty naked play for Latino voters.” As analysts like to note, President Obama won over 70% of the Latino vote — just like Carter Glass used to sweep the white vote. Can you say Obamacare?

Again. This is the age old formula of the American Left. From slavery to segregation, lynching, the Ku Klux Klan and on to racial quotas, attacking Korean grocers or suing Arizona — the left uses race to gin up a racial base and repays with big government.

A peep of dissent from Joe Scarborough? How about better than that? How about outrage? Nah.

Why?

Presumably because a host on MSNBC can’t say these things. Why? Because MSNBC plays the race card all the time for ratings — which in turned are used to support big government. Can Al Sharpton use the “n” word? Yeah, no problem. Give him a show. Can Chris Matthews say “shuck and jive.” Of course. And there won’t be a peep from Colin Powell — much less Joe Scarborough.

Powell was playing his race card, it can’t help but be noticed, on the mother-ship network that allows all that racist crap at MSNBC.

Let’s start from the top in this sewer. The Powell statement as made on NBC, the parent network of MSNBC. 

“There’s also a dark— a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the Party. What I do mean by that? I mean by that is they still sort of look down on minorities. How can I evidence that? When I see a former governor say that the president is shuckin’ and jivin’, that’s a racial era slave term. When I see another former governor after the president’s first debate where he didn’t do very well, says that the president was lazy. He didn’t say he was slow, he was tired, he didn’t do well, he said he was lazy. Now, it may not mean anything to most Americans but to those of us who are African-Americans, the second word is shiftless and then there’s a third word that goes along with it Birther, the whole Birther Movement. Why do senior Republican leaders tolerate this kind of discussion within the Party? I think the Party has to take a look at itself.

“So: ‘Shuckin’ and jivin’,’ that’s a racial era slave term…. Why do senior Republican leaders tolerate this kind of discussion within the Party? I think the Party has to take a look at itself.”

Really? Really?

 A “dark vein” inside the GOP of Reagan and Kemp and the Bushes because former Governor Sarah Palin used the term “shuck and jive”?

The Powell double-standard here is truly astounding. The pick-up by Scarborough disgraceful.

Here’s one Jay Carney, press secretary to the first black president of the United States, kicking off a formal White House briefing (here’s the video)

by saying from the podium, “Sorry. I'm going to shuck and jive! Time to shuck and jive.”

Word from General Powell on this? Nah. Scarborough? Nope.

There is General Powell on NBC insisting a good leader shouldn’t “tolerate this kind of discussion” -- while sitting on the set of a network that employs Chris Matthews, the man who said (hat tip Newsbusters) on-air July 7, 2010 to Rachel Maddow:

"What has it been like, as you shuck and jive, hang out with the men over there, the women over there, in uniform risking their lives every day?"

The “men over there,” the “women over there” were American troops serving in Afghanistan. The New Pittsburgh Courier (whose owner describes the paper as part of America’s “black press”) did a little research on the number of blacks in the American military — including “over there” where Maddow had spent her time, according to Matthews, “shucking and jiving” with said troops. It seems that a full 9% of Americans killed in both Afghanistan and Iraq were black.

Some shuck. Some jive.

Did Powell say to David Gregory: “You know David, shucking and jiving isn’t a good phrase for anybody to be using because of its slavery relationship. I really think MSNBC and Chris Matthews specifically should apologize.”

Would Joe Scarborough have the wit to challenge this on his own show?

Nah.

One could go on here. The “lazy” slur Powell conjured was said by Obama himself (as noted here in Politico) when the President confessed:

“There is a deep down, underneath all the work I do, I think there's a laziness in me.”

In the world America should be headed to — a world where presidents of the United States are sometimes called lazy even by each other (as the white Gerald Ford once said of the white Ronald Reagan when describing him as “intellectually-lazy” — lazy has zero to do with race. Which even Powell seemed to acknowledge when he said:

“Now, it [calling President Obama lazy] may not mean anything to most Americans….”

That’s doubtless true -- for a reason. That a lot of Americans have died to make a color-blind America a reality. A country where a President Obama is treated with the same respect — or lack of it — that his 43 white predecessors have received.

But America is not headed to that colorblind world — at least, it seems, if the Joe Scarboroughs and Colin Powells of this world have anything to do with it.

For whatever reason -- acceptance at MSNBC or in the larger world of the liberal media -- going along to get along with the old left-wing formula of using race to win elections to build big government (or ratings for a big government supporting network) is just never going to be condemned outright by someone who is as intimidated or foolish as Joe Scarborough appears to be.

Or as dependent on schmoozing with NBC and the liberal media as Colin Powell appears to be.

Upbraid Chris Matthews or NBC like Powell did the GOP? Or Al Sharpton? Much less the rest of the MSNBC crew that feeds off this playing the race card business? Not a prayer. All this race card playing business is accepted in the liberal club. Racism is historically what has made the American Left the American Left. It is why Powell, when working for George W. Bush along with Condoleezza Rice, was called a “House Negro” by leftist singer Harry Bellafonte.

The fact that someone with Colin Powell’s career behind him doesn’t have either the will or the nerve to speak out and challenge the harsh reality of this mindset that has in fact been directed at him personally, not to mention at various conservatives or the GOP, by leftists says volumes. None of it good.

A few years back, trying to gently break it to Morning Joe about the realities of the race and progressive tie, I posted this piece about the title of his show.

The “Joe” comes from one Josephus Daniels, the Secretary of the Navy for President Woodrow Wilson (1913-1921). Secretary Daniels was a progressive reformer like his boss (and his Assistant Secretary of the Navy, a young man named Franklin D. Roosevelt). One of Daniel’s “reforms” was to ban wine from the officer’s mess on Navy ships — and substitute coffee instead. As one might imagine, this particular reform didn’t go down all that well with sailors, and coffee on Navy ships acquired the nickname “Morning Joe” in honor of Secretary Josephus Daniels.

Alas, also like his boss President Wilson, Daniels was a thoroughgoing racist, as noted in my posting nearby, “Two Presidents and the Court: When Bigotry Takes the Bench.”

The nationally prominent owner and editor of the Raleigh News and Observer in his native North Carolina, where he vividly practiced a scurrilous racism, Daniels shrieked that Wilson’s predecessor Theodore Roosevelt (before Taft) and opponent in the 1912 election had insulted “the sensibilities of every man in the South” by inviting black leader Booker T. Washington to lunch at the White House during TR’s tenure. He insisted that “the subjection of the Negro, politically, and the separation of the Negro, socially, are paramount to all other considerations…short of the preservation itself of the Republic.” He prided himself as owner of the News and Observer, proclaiming his paper was “the militant voice of White Supremacy.” And, not to be forgotten, “Morning Joe” Daniels segregated the U.S. Navy. There’s more, lots more — a hat tip here to Bruce Bartlett’s informative book Wrong on Race: The Democratic Party’s Buried Past — but you get the picture. This was someone who gives the words “overly ripe” a new meaning.

So the question in these quarters as we listen to the Sotomayor debate, where accusations of racism have been raised, is this:

Does Joe Scarborough realize his show is named for the phrase coined for Josephus Daniels? Do the suits at MSNBC realize the titter potential from a show that could quickly be tagged the “Morning Racist”???

Just asking. As Joe surely knows, the record of our friends on the left with issues of race…a record bequeathed by the likes of Josephus Daniels is…ahh…a bit dicey. Some would argue it’s the storyline for the American left. And since the left runs MSNBC…”

That was back in July of 2009.

Monday morning, Joe Scarborough sat there on the set of his MSNBC television show — a show that uses the nickname for one of the worst racists in American governmental history — and said of Sean Hannity and Mark Levin:

“They didn’t listen. They went out, they engaged in birtherism, they called the president a racist who hated all white people.”

It was, bluntly put, a lie.

A Scarborough buy-in to the liberal idea that the best way to damage the cause of freedom and a colorblind America is to damage prominent conservatives who are among the best advocates that cause can ever have.

One can only conclude from this that the real truth of the American Left — the dependence on race to elect progressives to grow the government — is something Scarborough will never have the courage to confront.

When Alabama Democrat and Governor George C. Wallace gave his inaugural address in 1963 he infamously said:

“Segregation now, segregation tomorrow and segregation forever.”

It is abundantly clear that were the word “racism” substituted for “segregation” Wallace’s vow is the dog whistle — make that brass drum — of the American Left in 2013.

Race is their issue. They intend to divide Americans by race whenever and however they get the chance. For as long as they can get that chance — or make that chance.

For whatever reason, General Powell will never speak out. For a genuine American hero, that is disgraceful.

And as for Joe Scarborough. Quite apparently, he doesn’t have the guts.

Shameful. Absolutely shameful.

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About the Author
Jeffrey Lord is a former Reagan White House political director and author. He writes from Pennsylvania at jlpa1@aol.com.