Tag Archives: blackmail

NBC, CNN should call Rethugnicans’ bluff

Reports The Associated Press:

Washington — The Republican National Committee charged [yesterday] that NBC and CNN are promoting a potential presidential candidacy by Hillary Rodham Clinton, threatening to blackball [the two networks] from future [Republican Party] primary debates if they air upcoming programs on the former secretary of state.

RNC chairman Reince Priebus called a planned NBC mini-series on Clinton and a CNN documentary on the first lady an “extended commercial” for a future Clinton presidential campaign. In separate letters to the networks, he urged them to cancel “this political ad masquerading as an unbiased production.”

Clinton has not yet said whether she’ll run for president again in 2016, but her future remains the subject of wide speculation in political circles and beyond. The primary debates typically provide a ratings boost for the networks and are highly coveted as the presidential campaign unfolds.

In making the charge, the RNC was raising a common complaint among Republican activists that news and entertainment industries favor Democratic candidates. Republicans have also used a potential Clinton campaign as a fundraising tool in recent months as both parties begin to assess the crop of candidates to succeed President Barack Obama.

CNN Films is planning a feature-length documentary film on the former first lady, looking at her professional and personal life. It will be led by Oscar-winning director and producer Charles Ferguson and is expected to air in 2014.

NBC has announced a miniseries called “Hillary,” starring actress Diane Lane. No air date has been announced but it is timed to be released before the 2016 presidential election. NBC has said the four-hour miniseries will follow Clinton’s life and career from 1998 to the present. …

The RNC gets to dictate the networks’ programming?

Really?

And it’s hilariously ironic, because it was Repugnican icon Ronald Fucking Reagan who killed the so-called “fairness doctrine” in 1987, allowing CNN and NBC to air programming about Billary Clinton if they so choose.

But when the results of Reagan’s action aren’t favorable to their party, the Rethugnicans cry “foul.”

Love her or hate her — and I don’t much like her myself — but Billary Clinton is a public figure of significant public interest, which makes her an appropriate subject for a documentary or even a mini-series. And the networks have the First-Amendment right to produce such programming if they so fucking choose.

NBC and CNN should tell the blackmailing Rethugnicans to go fuck themselves and proceed with their programming.

Who, after all, really needs whom? 

Billary Clinton thus far is beating all of the potential 2016 Repugnican Tea Party presidential candidates in nationwide polls, which apparently has Reince Priebus (that’s “major prick” in Greek) & Co. shitting their pants. If she weren’t such a threat, I can’t see them trying to dictate the networks’ programming in the Repugnican Tea Party’s favor.

The AP article linked to above claims that coverage of the the Repugnican Tea Party presidential primaries is ” highly coveted,” but aren’t the votes of the American people in a presidential election also highly coveted? Would the Repugnican Tea Party not shoot itself in the foot by disallowing any of the networks to cover any one of its presidential primary debates?

Are the party’s presidential primary debates not also “political ads,” to use Priebus’ own words?

Again, CNN and NBC should ignore the Rethugnican Party’s pathetic, desperate, anti-democratic blackmail attempt and proceed as they wish.

If the Repugnican Tea Party can’t win the war of ideas, then too fucking bad. It has no fucking right to try to manipulate and rig the marketplace of ideas itself.

P.S. Further on the topic of Billary, while it certainly is possible that “Billary fatigue” might harm her campaign, should she decide to run for president for 2016, unless another high-level Democratic candidate emerges, I still think that the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination is Billary’s if she wants it.

It would take someone like, say, Al Gore or Howard Dean, I think, to give Billary a run for her money for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, as Barack Obama did in 2008, and thus far we’ve had no indication that someone on that level has any intention of running for 2016.

Whether or not Billary could win the White House is another story, of course.

Recent nationwide polls put Repugnican Chris Christie from 4 percent to 6 percent behind Billary, a lead that Christie, should he decide to run (and I’m pretty sure that he will), might not have such a hard time erasing, especially if (when?) “Billary fatigue” fully kicks in.

But could the so-called “moderate” Christie make it alive out of the Repugnican presidential primary season, which is much ideologically purer (that is, much more right-wing) than is the presidential election itself? Will the Repugnican Tea Party traitors have the sense not to nominate their party’s biggest fascist, but to nominate their party’s candidate who has the best chance of actually winning the White House?

It’s too early for all of this, I hear some readers groaning. My response to that is No, it’s not too early to prevent control of the White House from reverting back to the Rethugnican Party in 2016.

Barack Obama hasn’t done nearly enough to get us out of the abyss that George W. Bush & Co. left us in, but another Repug in the White House will only dig our hole even deeper.

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Straining out gnats, swallowing camels and casting stones at Weiner

Andrew Breibart

Associated Press photo

Archie-Bunker-like bottom-feeding blowhard Andrew Breitbart claimed on Monday that he has an X-rated image of Democratic U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner that he has been withholding in order “to save his [Weiner’s] family” — because Breitbart is all about decency and fair play, you see — but Breitbart on Monday also threatened, “If this guy [Weiner] wants to start fighting with me again, I have this [X-rated] photo.” Yes, committing sexual blackmail is highly ethical and admirable! Andrew Breitbart is my hero! (But seriously, if Weiner can sue Breitbart for Breitbart’s blatant blackmail, he should.)

Are we done now laughing over Weiner/wiener ha ha ha ha ha ha ha?

Because there are, I think, some serious issues here.

Unsurprisingly, hypocrites on the right (that’s redundant) disingenuously are calling for the head (pun intended) of Democratic U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, who, they say, should resign for having lied about having had very apparently consensual sexually oriented electronic communications with several women, even after he married.

(It’s like Monica Lewinsky redux, only Weiner isn’t president, he claims that he had no physical sexual contact with anyone, and he didn’t lie about his own sexual activity that is no one else’s fucking business anyway while he was under oath. Oh, and there is no semen-stained garment — that we know of, but rest assured, because I’m sure that Great White Protector of the Nation Andrew Breitbart is on it.)

The Weiner-related “outrage” on the right is beyond pathetic. Repugnican National Committee chair Reince Priebus, a Richie-Rich frat-boy prick, was one of the first to call for Weiner’s head. The loathesome, beady-eyed weasel U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor, U.S. House Repugnican leader, also has called on Weiner to resign, but, as I have stated, it’s up to Weiner first and foremost whether he should resign, and then, if he decides not to resign, it’s up to his constituents to decide whether to re-elect him in November 2012.

Indeed, Reuters reports that “A little more than half of New York City voters think Weiner should not resign, according to a NY1-Marist poll taken just hours after his tearful admission.” I surmise that as time passes and “Weinergate” subsides, even more of Weiner’s New York constituents will feel that his resignation is not called for, and in this case, it’s their opinion, not the opinion of the Repugnican Tea Party traitors, that matters.

It’s not like self-serving, hypocritical, stupid-white-male scumbags like Priebus and Cantor have the best interests of Weiner’s constituents at heart. They clearly only want another Democratic scalp to nail to the wall, perhaps especially since Repugnican U.S. Rep. Christopher Lee, also of New York, resigned in February after his online sexual behavior came to light. (To add insult to injury, a Democrat, Kathy Hochul, to whom I’d happily given a $25 campaign contribution, won Lee’s vacated seat in a special election last month.)

But Lee resigned from the get-go. The day his shirtless-in-the-mirror pic hit the Web, he called it quits. He didn’t, in my estimation, have to resign. And, as I argued at the time*, he probably shouldn’t have resigned. 

However, I don’t expect the spineless Democrats in D.C. to support the now-politically-radioactive Weiner — and that’s how most politicians are, of course: they’re your “friends” only if they perceive it still to be in their best personal political interests — and without the support of his fellow Democrats in D.C., I don’t know if Weiner can politically survive being frozen out of his own party, even if he strives to survive politically.

And then there is wingnut Andrew Breitbart, who on Monday bizarrely, swinishly and inappropriately bogarted Weiner’s news-conference podium to announce that he wanted“vindication” because indeed the infamous crotch shot that he publicized is an image of the underwear-clad, engorged (and perhaps tingling) crotch of Anthony Weiner. (Yes, this was a “victory” — just like Donald Trump’s Barack-Obama-birth-certificate “victory” was a “victory” of which Trump pronounced that he was “proud” of himself.)

Yes, Andrew Breitbart is a modern-day bell-ringin’ Paul Revere, a real patriot who is protecting us from elected officials lying about whether or not racy images that they transmitted privately actually are of  them.

One of Breitbart’s self-aggrandizing websites is called “BigJournalism.” Because that’s what the best journalism is all about: not exposing fraud, graft, waste and corruption and the like, but exposing whose bulge that is in the gray underwear. Yes, world-renowned fearless journalist Andrew Breitbart makes the likes of Ida Tarbell, Edward R. Murrow, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein and Seymour Hersh look like mere fucking amateurs.

To me, the largest issues in “Weinergate” are that it exposes (1) Americans’ juvenile and backasswards (read: Judeo-“Christian” [that is, “Christo”fascist], puritanical, Victorian, etc.) views on sexuality and (2) how they’ll simply let crimes of the century (like, oh, stolen presidential elections and bogus wars launched on purely false pretenses) go but will go ape shit over the teeny-tiny (but titillating) shit, like whose semen it is on a semen-strained dress and whether or not the sausage-like bulge in a pair of gray underwear belongs to a certain elected individual with the surname of Weiner (guffaw!). 

If the members of the lunatic, Taliban-like right want to lead repressed, hypocritical sex lives, that’s their own fucking business, but for them to shove their Dark-Ages hangups over sexuality down the throats of the rest of us is, dare I say — and this is one of their favorite words — tyranny. And indeed, for buttholish self-appointed morality cop Andrew Breitbart to hold the public release of an X-rated photo of Weiner over Weiner’s head also is a yet another example of right-wing (that’s redundant) tyranny.

And for the Democrats to cave into this kind of sexual blackmail — instead of fighting back and changing the game instead of playing along with the wingnuts’ game — is yet another example of the spectacular spinelessness and political ineptitude that we’ve come to know and loathe about the Democratic Party.

I can empathize with Weiner. If some wingnutty, bottom-feeding scumbag like the Archie-Bunker-like Andrew Breitbart had obtained and publicly released an embarrassing image of me and I were confonted with the question of whether or not it was me in the image — if I had been in Weiner’s shoes (and in his underwear, too, I guess…) — I can’t say for certain that my initial impulse would not have been to deny it, as Weiner did. After all, is something from my personal life really the whole world’s business?

However, the best tactic, I think, would be to refuse to respond to attempted sexual blackmail. To even answer yes or no, to confirm or deny, is only to play into the hypocritical, disingenuous wingnuts’ hands, and at least tacitly grants legitimacy to sexual blackmail, when sexual blackmail, or any blackmail, is quite illegitimate (it’s incredibly unethical and immoral, if not also illegal).

And it’s interesting to see what types of lies the Repugnican Tea Party traitors attack. Bill Clinton’s lie that he didn’t have any sexual relations with Monica Lewinsky — this lie of his didn’t hurt the nation, to my knowledge. Neither has Weiner’s lie that a certain crotch shot wasn’t his.

So we have lies like Clinton’s and Weiner’s, but when the treasonous-by-definition Repugnicans lie, an awful lot of people tend to get hurt — or killed.

How about these huge fucking lies, circa late 2002 and early 2003: Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction. Iraq is seeking nuclear weapons. We can’t wait for the “smoking gun” to come in the form of a “mushroom cloud.”

Tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians have died because of those lies, as have more than 4,450 members of the U.S. military since the unelected Bush regime illegally, immorally and unjustly launched the bogus Vietraq War in 2003 (five of them, in fact, were killed in Iraq on Monday, so the treasonous BushCheneyCorp’s blatant fucking lies still are killing people today).

If you want to talk about House ethics, I’ll give you just one example of something that I find a lot more disgusting than anything that has been revealed about Anthony Weiner: How about Repugnican Texas U.S. Rep. Joe Barton, who essentially takes bribes from Big Oil for selling us out to Big Oil, and who a year ago this month proclaimed that the U.S. government’s seeking to get compensation from British Petroleum for its oily debacle in the Gulf of Mexico amounted to a grossly unfair and unjust “shakedown” of the poor corporate behemoth BP?

So it’s perfectly ethical (or at least acceptable) to take tons of corporate cash in exchange for protecting the corporate criminals, no matter what devastation they cause, no matter how much they harm the public good — but a politically motivated third party’s release of risque images of an elected official amounts to a serious ethics violation? Really? Really?

“You strain the gnats from your beverages, but you swallow camels,” Jesus Christ said critically to the small-minded hypocrites of his day, the Pharisees. (Among many other things, Jesus also said to them, “Whoever among you is without sin himself should cast the first stone.”)

Nothing, really, has changed since then.

*I wrote:

I don’t really see, though, that Lee was guilty of much more than attempted infidelity and apparently being in the throes of a midlife crisis….

As reprehensible as [Lee] seems to be … it seems to me that the matter really is between Lee and his wife. And, dare I say, that he shouldn’t have had to resign over it.

As fun as it is to dog-pile upon an apparent Repugnican hypocrite (wait, that’s redundant…), my concern is that these sex scandals, aside from giving us perverse entertainment at the expense of others’ privacy, serve to preserve our national hangups over sexuality. 

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