Sunday, December 3, 2017

The Vast Left Wing Misogynist Media Conspiracy

Yesterday I graced this blog with some comments on a young feminist by name of Lila Thulin. A recent college graduate, a woman whose mind had been marinated in feminist ideology throughout her college years, Thulin had bought it all. Now she was disillusioned by the current wave of accusations of sexual harassment. 

It was not just right wing crazies or Tea Party Patriots doing the harassing. It was left wing, media and cinema types who had been accused, from Harvey Weinstein to Louis CK to Brett Ratner to Matt Lauer to Charley Rose to Mark Halperin to Kevin Spacey and now to former conductor of the Metropolitan Opera, James Levine. For those who care, Levine’s predatory pedophilia was not a secret in New York opera circles.

Be that as it may, today we see the kind of lame thinking that has caused feminists like Lila Thulin to become disillusioned about the cause. The author Jill Filipovic is obviously an ideological zealot, one who prefers the narrative to the facts. While young Lila Thulin was willing to judge facts that might disprove the indoctrination she received at Stanford Filiopvic has no such compunctions.

For those of you who had thought that Russian collusion had put Donald Trump in the White House, Filipovic has one more culprit: a vast left wing misogynist media conspiracy kept the oh-so-qualified Hillary Clinton from her rightful place in the oval office.

Of course, this rhetorical sleight-of-hand is based on a false premise that Filipovic takes to be axiomatic truth. This is not a new ploy. Socrates invented it and even perfected it.

Examine Filopovic’s premise:

But when one of the best-qualified candidates for the presidency in American history and the first woman to get close to the Oval Office loses to an opponent who had not dedicated a nanosecond of his life to public service and ran a blatantly misogynist campaign, it’s hard to conclude that gender didn’t play a role.

As you know, the notion that Hillary Clinton was the best qualified candidate for the presidency in American history was floated by President Obama himself. People count it among his more decisive dicta, along with the one where he said that Hillary was likable enough. If you do not get what Obama was insinuating, you should open your dictionary and look up the word: irony.

Obama’s statement was so absurd that it was surely intended as a joke. It ranks up there with Dwight Eisenhower’s statement that if you gave him a week he might think of something that Richard Nixon had contributed to his administration.

Of course, Filipovic continues to suggest that Hillary earned her spot at the top of the Democratic ticket. She earned it with a little help from her friends at the Democratic National Committee and by deleting tens of thousands of state department emails and by being one of the more corrupt politicians in memory. And, oh yes, she earned it by destroying the lives of the women who accused her husband of sexual harassment. In that she was ably abetted by George Stephanopoulos. You need but watch George bully and berate and harass one of Bill Clinton's victims in the movie, The War Room, to see how the Clinton campaign treated women.

So, Hillary Clinton earned nothing. She rode her husband’s name to the nomination… and to her other sinecures. And she failed at all of them. She was the enabler in chief. Her husband was the role model for the progressive men whose predations are now being exposed. And whose journalism Filipovic deplores. For her efforts Hillary Clinton was seriously disliked by young women. She was not likable enough. She was nominated because she was a woman, and for no other reason.

Besides, has any man ever taken Hillary Clinton to be a sexual object? By all the evidence, her husband certainly didn’t. About this the feminist fanatic has nothing to say.

Filipovic concocts a paranoid narrative about how all the progressive male journalists, the ones who are now being accused of various degrees of sexual depravity conspired to make Hillary look bad. By her narrative these males defined the media coverage of Hillary. Of course, Filipovic ignores the fact that the media, by and large, was totally in the tank for Hillary. And she ignores the role that Megan Kelly (and NBC) played in presenting the Trump-as-misogynist narrative. It’s not as though people were unaware of Donald Trump’s record on and with women.

Since these facts do not fit the feminist narrative Filipovic ignores them. She presents a rogues gallery of male sexual harassers, men who worked, surely with Vladimir Putin, to throw the election to Trump:

Many of the male journalists who stand accused of sexual harassment were on the forefront of covering the presidential race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Matt Lauer interviewed Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Trump in an official “commander-in-chief forum” for NBC. He notoriously peppered and interrupted Mrs. Clinton with cold, aggressive, condescending questions hyper-focused on her emails, only to pitch softballs at Mr. Trump and treat him with gentle collegiality a half-hour later. Mark Halperin and Charlie Rose set much of the televised political discourse on the race, interviewing other pundits, opining themselves and obsessing over the electoral play-by-play. Mr. Rose, after the election, took a tone similar to Mr. Lauer’s with Mrs. Clinton — talking down to her, interrupting her, portraying her as untrustworthy. Mr. Halperin was a harsh critic of Mrs. Clinton, painting her as ruthless and corrupt, while going surprisingly easy on Mr. Trump. The reporter Glenn Thrush, currently on leave from The New York Times because of sexual harassment allegations, covered Mrs. Clinton’s 2008 campaign when he was at Newsday and continued to write about her over the next eight years for Politico.

A pervasive theme of all of these men’s coverage of Mrs. Clinton was that she was dishonest and unlikable. These recent harassment allegations suggest that perhaps the problem wasn’t that Mrs. Clinton was untruthful or inherently hard to connect with, but that these particular men hold deep biases against women who seek power instead of sticking to acquiescent sex-object status.

In truth, the nation at large, for whom Hillary Clinton was anything but an unknown quantity thought that she was dishonest and unlikable. The reason was that she was dishonest and unlikable. We will add that Barack Obama also thought the same… though he presented it more subtly.

Of course the feminist firebrand does not consider that if Hillary Clinton could not stand up to these men in a television interview how would we expect her to deal with world leaders… people who are, if I may say so, considerably more competent than this motley band of journalists. If she had been as eminently qualified as Filipovic thinks she would have had no problem with them.

As mentioned, no man has ever taken Hillary Clinton to be a sex object. The real question is whether a woman who presents herself on the job as a feminist in full rebellion against the patriarchy… all the while enabling a man who preys on vulnerable woman… will be respected as a team player, as someone who is loyal to the company.

We certainly agree, as does everyone, that women should be respected for their minds and their achievements… and not be reduced to sexual objects. And yet, if you examine the feminist conversation about women… just about all you hear involves sex and sex and sex. Whether it’s about abortion or birth control or booty or boob jobs or thigh gaps or pussy hats or Vagina monologues… it’s all about sex, all the time.

Moreover, if you were the hiring manager of a company would you want to hire a smart thoughtful young woman like Lila Thulin, a woman who was willing to allow her ideas to be judged against reality or a fanatical feminist confabulator who wants above all else to sell her narrative and to recruit people for her cause? Making it all about sex misses the point. If women enter the workforce in order to overthrow the patriarchy and to foment revolution, they are not going to get very far. For whatever reasons.

And let’s not forget that Filipovic is indicting men, she is manifesting hostility toward men. She is part of the retaliation. It is not a new thing in the feminist movement. Even the mild assertiveness promoted by the lean-in movement involves getting in men’s faces, threatening them.  The current blitz of attacks on men, the current feminist tide of hostility against men… whatever makes you think that that is the solution. It is more likely to aggravate the problem.

Now that relationships within the workplace have been thoroughly sexualized, the chances of older men mentoring young women have disappeared. As numerous men have said, there is too much risk involved even in having a business dinner with a young woman, no less traveling with one. Why even take the risk of hiring a woman?

The moral of the story: if feminists want women to be respected for their accomplished they should promote the work of accomplished women, not dishonest political hacks who owe their careers to their ability to abuse, vilify and bully the victims of their husband's predations.


Sam L. said...

One cannot change the mind of one whose mind is hermetically sealed.

David Foster said...

" loses to an opponent who had not dedicated a nanosecond of his life to public service"

The idea that pursuing a career in politics and/or the bureaucracy is 'public service' to a higher degree than other types of careers is one of the big lies of our time.

AesopFan said...

David Foster - you are so correct.
And it's amazing how rich you can get "serving" the public.
Reminds me of an old SF story.

The story is set in the United States in a time that appears to be contemporaneous with the story's 1950 publication date. It is told in first-person narrative by a United Nations translator. The story opens at a special session of the UN where three alien emissaries, the pig-like "Kanamit", are testifying that the purpose of their mission to Earth is to bring humans "the peace and plenty which we ourselves enjoy, and which we have in the past brought to other races throughout the galaxy". The aliens soon supply Earth with cheap unlimited power, boundless supplies of food, and a device that disables all modern armies by suppressing all explosions, and they begin work on drugs for prolonging life. As a further token of friendship, they allow humans to visit their home planet via ten-year "exchange groups".
While the narrator has trusted the Kanamit from the time of their arrival, his friend and fellow translator Gregori has not. Gregori dismisses any notion of disinterested altruism and is certain the Kanamits must have an ulterior motive underlying their actions. Determined to discover what the Kanamit stand to gain by helping humans, Gregori takes a job at the Kanamit embassy to learn their language. This affords him access to a Kanamit–English dictionary, and he later steals a Kanamit book, hoping to translate it.
The narrator has also left the UN to work at the Kanamit embassy, and working together with Gregori, the two determine that the book's title is How to Serve Man. Two weeks later, the narrator returns from a trip to find Gregori distraught, having discovered to his horror that the title is a double entendre. Gregori informs the narrator that he has translated the first paragraph of the book and has determined that "it's a cookbook" (and not a treatise on serving humanity).

sestamibi said...

. . . made into a Twilight Zone episode featuring Richard "Jaws" Kiel.

Deana said...

In a recent podcast, Zman observed that virtually all literature, poetry, movies, music, and interviews in which black people are featured, the focus is almost always about their blackness. Their race always plays the staring role in whatever they do. They rarely are just humans experiencing normal human interactions and events. The backdrop is always race.

I am starting to think the same about women. Unless you happen to be talking to a conservative woman, most women seem obsessed with all things related to sex/gender differences: abortion, birth control, the “pay gap,” sexual discrimination, stupid marches about women’s rights, andso on. It is boring. Uninteresting.

If I want to discuss something on the news or a good podcast, or a cultural trend, I either have to talk to the very few conservative women I know or talk to men.

Progressive women are harming women in general. They make us all look silly.

In two years, progressive women will be complaining that there aren’t enough entry level opportunities for young women. And they will be mystified why. . .