Streetcar Line

Poisoned Pens, Poisoned Lenses

The Establishment media's sickness unto death.

By 12.4.12

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From the establishment media, the raw and sickening hate just keeps on coming. Vicious, vile, despicable, and deranged, the media minions demonstrate their appalling lack not just of class but of basic humanity.

Such is the obvious conclusion from participating again as one of the judges in the Media Research Center's "Best Notable Quotables of 2012," the indispensable organization's 25th annual awards for the year's worst reporting and commentary.

Consider this gem, actually begrudging somebody the success of near-miraculous, life-saving surgery:

Newsweek/Daily Beast assignment editor Allison Yarrow: "Can you imagine being that organ donor? I mean, it's such a difficult decision to say "I want to give my body to someone else after I'm dead.'"

Newsweek senior writer Ramin Setoodeh: "To Dick Cheney? I would never give my heart to Dick Cheney. It would freeze over."

Yarrow: "I would never do it. I'd say 'give my heart back.' Exactly…."

Host/columnist John Avlon: "Seriously, the ill will toward Dick Cheney getting a heart transplant is stunning."

Yarrow: "He may be one of the most evil people in the world."

Then there was David Chalian, former political director for ABC News and then Washington Bureau Chief for Yahoo! News, caught on an open microphone talking over a picture of Ann and Mitt Romney: "They are happy to have a party with black people drowning."

On MSNBC Live, anchor Thomas Roberts had this to say on Dec. 14, 2011 (too late for last year's MRC contest):

Plus, what Mitt Romney has in common with the KKK. Details on a rare Romney campaign blunder ahead…. So you might not hear Mitt Romney say 'keep America American' anymore. That's because it was a central theme of the KKK in the 1920s. It was a rallying cry for the group's campaign of violence and intimidation against blacks, gays and Jews. The progressive blog Americablog was the first to catch onto that.

Former CNN correspondent Bob Franken weighed in on MSNBC a few weeks later:

These seem to be appeals to the extreme white wing of the Republican Party. That is to say that there continues to be among many conservatives a real resentment against blacks…. I think this is very intentional, it is pandering, there's sort of a wink-wink that this base should be reminded that Barack Obama, President of the United States, is one of them, an African-American. Yes, I think this is very intentional. I think this is part of a hateful campaign that is being very methodically run in the hope it's going to appeal to voters who would love to see us return to the good old days of Jim Crow.

Well, Franken sure has us pegged, at least partially. I bet every conservative in America does have a real resentment against at least one black -- by the name of Barack Obama. But that's okay: We resent his white half as much as his black half.

Of course we all know about MSNBC's Touré complaining about Romney's "niggerization" of Obama by using the word "anger" twice. Never mind that Touré's use of that word makes us angry, twice over. I wonder if our own anger means we are secretly black?

Moving right along, the ever-obnoxious Paul Krugman wrote this on October 15:

Mitt Romney doesn't see dead people. But that's only because he doesn't want to see them: if he did, he'd have to acknowledge the ugly reality of what will happen if he and Paul Ryan get their way on health care…. A literal description of their plan is that they want to expose many Americans to financial insecurity, and let some of them die, so that a handful of already wealthy people can have a higher after-tax income.

Krugman is literally a menace to decent society. Then again, so is his New York Times colleague Charles Blow(hard), speaking on MSBNC (gee, notice a pattern at that network?):

This is the kind of man that Mitt Romney is. This man does not have a soul. If you opened up, you know, his chest, there's probably a gold ticking watch in there and not even a heart. This is not a person. This is just a robot who will do whatever it takes, whatever he's told to do, to make it to the White House. And he will take whatever push in the back from whatever nasty person is pushing him and move him further in that direction.

No heart, huh? Maybe he donated it to Cheney!

At least Cheney and Romney aren't as bad as Rick Santorum, though -- at least not in the eyes of MSNBC's Martin Bashir, who, quoting George Orwell's 1984, compared the Pennsylvanian to "the forces of darkness and treasonable maggots who collaborate with them" -- or maybe to the guy in 1984 who denounced those maggots (it's not exactly clear). Bashir then cited a critic's gibe that Santorum "has one of the finest minds of the 13th century," before adding his own conclusion: "If you listen carefully to Rick Santorum, he sounds more like Stalin that Pope Innocent III."

Compared to that, it was almost a compliment when the New York Times' Bill Keller told, yes, MSNBC, that "Sometimes Santorum sounds like he's creeping up on a Christian version of Sharia law." Yeah, conservatives especially liked the part of Santorum's platform approving of wife-beating in response to denial of sex -- but only because the invisible ink in the platform noted that former New York Times editors-in-chief could be substituted for wives at any time during the beating process.

Paul Ryan of course wasn't exempt from vitriol. The oft-loved Maureen Dowd wrote that "Ryan should stop being so lovable. People who intend to hurt other people should wipe that smile off their faces." Not to be outdone, Esquire's Charles Pierce -- a prior winner of the MRC's single worst quote of the year when in 2003 he wrote that if Mary Jo Kopechne had lived, "Edward Kennedy would have brought comfort to her in her old age" -- described Ryan as a "zombie-eyed granny-starver… an authentically dangerous zealot… a smiling, aw-shucks murderer of opportunity, a creator of dystopias in which he never will have to live."

Back to Ryan's running mate, MSNBC's Jonathan Alter, living in an alternative universe, said that if Mitt Romney is "elected President, a lot of people will die." Joy Behar said that "people like [Todd] Akin and Ryan and Romney… are trying to kill us and destroy us."

The only thing not clear is whether the killing comes before or after the destroying. It depends on which edition of The Conservative Handbook you consult.

Then again, not everything is darkness and death for these media morons. Sometimes they find it in their heart to hand out compliments -- and, being of a generally sunny disposition, I like ending on a nice note, so here's the inimitable Chris Matthews showing sympathy for Harvard Law graduate Mitt Romney:

This guy's done everything right. He's raise his family right. He's fought his way all the way to the top of the Harvard Law Review, in a blind test becomes head of the Review, the top editor there. Everything he's done is clean as a whistle. He's never not only [sic] broken any law, he's never done anything wrong. He's the perfect father, the perfect husband, the perfect American. And all they do is trash the guy. 

Wait…. What's that you are saying? Did I get that wrong? Oh, my gosh, Matthews wasn't talking about Romney after all. He was talking about some foreign exchange student named Barry. My mistake. Either way, it gives me a thrill going up my leg just to know that such perfection exists in this world full of Stalinists, maggots… and former vice presidents too ornery to die before Newsweek itself croaks its last, fetid breath.

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About the Author
Quin Hillyer is a senior editor of The American Spectator and a senior fellow at the Center for Individual Freedom. Follow him on Twitter @QuinHillyer.