Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Double Standardism

Everyone knows that politicians and pundits on the left operate according to a double standard.

A fault, even a trivial fault committed by a conservative or a Republican becomes a crime against humanity. The same or even more egregious fault committed by a liberal or a Democrat becomes trivial.

Prime examples: Clarence Thomas and Bill Clinton.

Also, think about what would have happened to a conservative media executive if he had ever spoken of President Obama with disparaging, racist language… as Amy Pascal, head of Sony pictures did.

Is there any doubt that if Pascal had been a Republican the hue and cry would have forced her out of her job by now? As of today, it looks as though she will survive.

Pascal has job security because media figures and politicians do not judge liberals and conservatives according to the same standards.

Pascal adheres to the correct ideology. She and her Hollywood friends give gobs of money to the Democratic Party. She is one of them. In her world, being one of them counts for a great deal.

When former San Diego Clippers owner Donald Sterling was exposed for having made racist remarks in private, Oprah denounced his “plantation mentality.”

When Amy Pascal’s emails were exposed, Oprah counseled against a “rush to judgment.”

Jonah Goldberg has explained the double standard succinctly:

If you work from the dogmatic assumption that liberalism is morally infallible and that liberals are, by definition, pitted against sinister and — more importantly — powerful forces, then it’s easy to explain away what seem like double standards. Any lapse, error, or transgression by conservatives is evidence of their real nature, while similar lapses, errors, and transgressions by liberals are trivial when balanced against the fact that their hearts are in the right place.

Despite controlling the commanding heights of the culture — journalism, Hollywood, the arts, academia, and vast swaths of the corporate America they denounce — liberals have convinced themselves they are pitted against deeply entrenched powerful forces and that being a liberal is somehow brave. Obama, the twice-elected president of the United States, to this day speaks as if he’s some kind of underdog.

I don’t want to take anything away from Goldberg’s excellent insight, but I would add that liberalism functions like a church that hands out indulgences… dare I say, liberally.

Those who belong to the church of modern liberalism can get away with things that a conservative, even a mere mortal never could. Surely, it's a persuasive recruiting tool.


Ares Olympus said...

Its hard for me to take seriously a blog that starts with "Everyone knows...".

It makes me immediately defensive, and the best I can do is think of Jonathan Haidt's recent book "The righteous mind" where he proports that we're all hypocrites, and that it's a "feature not a bug" of our human character, designed to keep our own motives hidden from ourselves.
Here's a quote from the intro:
If you think that moral reasoning is something we do to figure out the truth, you’ll be constantly frustrated by how foolish, biased, and illogical people become when they disagree with you. But if you think about moral reasoning as a skill we humans evolved to further our social agendas – to justify our own actions & to defend the teams we belong to – then things will make a lot more sense. Keep your eye on the intuitions, & don’t take people’s moral arguments at face value. They’re mostly post hoc constructions made up on the fly, crafted to advance one or more strategic objectives.

So if I take Haidt's advice and consider this identified "double standard" on the left is true, maybe this fact has a context that will make it more digestible, that we all have double standards as our first response?

Goldberg's article has Steve Scalise as current case-in-point, something about a 2002 speech to a group connected to David Duke, and Scalise's basic response that he was giving generic speeches to his political agenda, and talks where people want to listen, which seemed a reasonable idea to me.

So if I go back to Haidt's quote above, I can say "Oh, so this moralizing against white supremacy" isn't about morality, but a more or less conscious strategy to put the opposition off balance to weaken their coming House/Senate majority.

And I can see how pundits will be frustrated, if they argue merely on facts, that the circumstantial evidence add up to nothing, but under the PC claim of racism, rational argument is disabled, and you have to suddenly solve 400 years of race relations to have a seat at the table of moral discourse.

Anyway, I don't know if Haidt's case helps. It does show why even acknowledging facts puts you at a political disadvantage as effectively as asking "When did you stop beating your wife?"

Effective politicians must be people who have learned how to face their own fears of being disliked or manipulated by rivals seeking to shame.

I feel admiration for them whether I agree or not with their politics.

Sam L. said...

Well, of course not "everyone" in the world, but for everyone who reads this blog...

n.n said...

It's actually not a double standard. It's a principled standard: pro-choice or selective. It's part of the party platform.

Dennis said...
Here even a very left leaning Slate cannot stand the false narrative.

Nothing more dangerous to the truth that a defeated democrat party or Leftist. I will posit that both will throw as much "mud" against the wall as they can to keep the newly elected Congress from acting or accomplishing anything just as Harry Reid stopped it in the last Congress. There is a reason Obama has not used his veto pen very much in the past.
Much like Michele Obama tried to turn what would have been an act of kindness into a racial problem this will only escalate. I cannot count the times I have helped diminutive women get something from a place they could not reach.
One can discern what democrats and Leftists are doing by the fact that they have changed incidences that had little or no real involvement with racism into a racial meme. One does not associate with Al Sharpton in the manner that Obama, Holder or di Blasio unless one is trying to exacerbate racial tensions.
To not understand that searching for a moral truth is a goal that most people aspire to accomplish in their lives and not foolish at all to anyone who has a desire to live a "good" life has not understood the true value of self. Because some people may make mistakes does not been that all people are mistaken in looking to higher goals. What matters is whether we are trying to be hypocrites.
I just think that most people are trying to be the best souls they can be and I appreciate them for that. Always trying to see the negative is one terrible way to enjoy life. Life is much bigger than that.


Everyone (except conservatives) knows that pundits of the Left operate according to a single standard: Those on the Right are wrong, whatever their virtues; While those on the Left are right are right, whatever their vices. This is called Partisanship. The advent of post-modernity simply delivered these hacks from the tyranny of empiricism The eternal present means that there is no past and no future and thus, no consequences.

Baloo said...

Nice. Reprinted here:
Liberals as Nutcases, Part I