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June 18, 2010

Comments

peter

Hey Joe. More about that song than any sane person would ever want to know at Wikipedia.

I preferred the Frank Zappa parody, Hey Punk, where you goin' with those bongos in your hand?

Rob Crawford

Friedersdork is simply a bore. He's angling for the Frum Chair -- to be the "acceptable conservative" in leftist circles. To do so, he must routinely do the rhetorical equivalent of donning over-sized shoes and a red squeaky nose.

Clarice

I found out about Pym from Sully--those were the days when he was worth reading.

As for Friedersdork, he really is stupid to take on Steyn, isn't he?

Rich Berger

Are you sure this guy's name isn't H.R. PufnStuf? He seems kinda childish.

bunkerbuster

What's childish about busting Steyn? I think we'd all agree that Steyn's ad hominem laden response is not only childish but a dead giveaway that he knows he's wrong. He claims there's no coverage, but there is.
I seriously doubt Steyn actually believes that the average American newspaper reader is unaware of what honor killings are and that some have taken place in the U.S. Yet, there he goes, name-calling like a schoolboy and looking for the tiniest nit of rhetorical self-defense, given that every single fact in the dispute is on Frieder's side....
But I do appreciate Tom's intellectual courage in bringing it up, I'm betting it's a tale Steyn will be working feverishly to bury and forget....

Jane says obamasucks

"Chief Obstetrician"

Love it.

Ignatz

--He claims there's no coverage, but there is.--

No he claims (it's right in TM's post, idiot):


it is striking that not one of the major newspapers has done an investigative series on the proliferation of "honor killings", not in Yemen or Waziristan but in the heart of the western world.

Go read an atlas so at least you can tell us what continent Yemen and Waziristan are on, twit.

I need a new ghost buster.

Hey, buster; my own private Idaho is on the Planet Claire.
=================

Porchlight

--He claims there's no coverage, but there is.--

No, he claims US honor killings are "rarely" covered by the national media, not that there is "no" coverage (your strawman). He then says that local media will pick them up but will tiptoe around them so as not to anger Muslim advocacy groups.

Donald

I'm a big B-52's fan Kim. Why I'm donig the potato right... ... ... now!

Conor Friedersdorf

I've followed up with another post that better states my objection to Mark Steyn: http://www.theatlantic.com/special-report/ideas/archive/2010/06/why-newspapers-arent-investigating-honor-killings-in-america/58349/

Tom, if you look at the initial post that Mr. Steyn wrote, it is far from clear that he is talking only about the media's coverage of honor killings in America -- and again, it makes no sense to say that newspapers are ideologically opposed to covering domestic honor killings when their international coverage demonstrates that they are perfectly willing to report on and condemn the practice.

Mr. Steyn also asserted that major newspapers have never covered the phenomenon in the heart of the Western world, when in fact a major New York Times article that I cited and you both ignore covered the phenomenon in Berlin at great length.

Finally, I fail to see why The Arizona Republic is an unworthy example of how American newspapers respond when an honor killing happens in their backyard. It is Mr. Steyn who asserted that the honor killing of an Arizona woman was ignored, when in fact the newspaper in whose backyard it occurred ran a dozen stories about the case, always labeling it an honor killing.

Love back.

Rock on, Lobster.
==========

Buford Gooch

Mr. Friedersdorf, it appears you didn't bother to actually read Tom's post, either

narciso

One was an Op Ed, from our increasing loopy McClatchy editorialist, with the phantom epidemic of Tea Party violence, and the other just mentioned Al Maliki, nowhere near a comprehensive survey of the subject, try to
pretend that we won't take your word for it,
Conor, and actually read the article

MayBee
and again, it makes no sense to say that newspapers are ideologically opposed to covering domestic honor killings when their international coverage demonstrates that they are perfectly willing to report on and condemn the practice.

That they will cover it *internationally* but don't in the Western World is precisely his point.
Perhaps you were not clear that the quote he included at the top of his post specifically said:
investigative series on the proliferation of "honor killings", not in Yemen or Waziristan but in the heart of the western world.
It is an honest mistake. On the other hand, perhaps you disagree with the point he was making.

But perhaps you've used a poor example to prove 'epistemic closure' or misleading journalism.

Mike Huggins

Meanwhile, back on the Planet Earth...

Antimedia

Geez, you would expect Conor to at least be as "logical" as bozo bunkerbutt.

I'll put this in terms that even Conor might understand. (I would write "will understand" but that's not at all certain.)

Conor, what part of "not one of the major newspapers......" did you manage to conflate with the Arizona Republic? And what part of "an investigative series" did you manage to conflate with a single article in a backwater newspaper?

Here's a couple of clues for you, son.

Major newspapers are defined as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Times, the Atlanta Constitution and the Dallas Morning News.

Second tier is places like the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Seattle Times, etc., etc. The Arizona Republic is way down on the list.

Investigative series is defined as a series of articles of a contiguous nature dealing with a single topic.

Now go find an investigate series dealing with honor killings in North America in any one of the major newspapers or swallow your ego and admit you're wrong.

Is reading comprehension a completely lost art? Don't they still test for that in the schools?

MayBee

Connor- it seems that 3 blog posts about Steyn's article indicates you were interested in a debate.
Why did you start with the position that it represented epistemic closure? Why not just say, "this is an interesting topic for debate"?

Barry Dauphin

Finally, I fail to see why The Arizona Republic is an unworthy example of how American newspapers respond when an honor killing happens in their backyard

Winner of today's Mario Cuomo weasel-wording award.

hit and run

I think we'd all agree

What,you got two mice in your pocket?

Captain Hate

Ok, now that Conor's bloody corpse has been removed we need something a bit more contentious to discuss: Is anybody else enjoying ESPN's increasingly desperate shilling for Tiger not to suck so much at Pebble Beach?

narciso

Well Capt, didn't they build him up, so they have to keep supporting him

hit and run

Captain -- I was a bit hesitant to jump on the "Chris Berman sux at golf commentary" bandwagon when you first proposed it. I enjoy his NFL schitck for the most part.

But you just don't "schtick" golf.

THE BALL IS ROLLING TOWARD THE HOLE!!!!!

My gracious,of course it is,that's what these golfers do for a living.

90% of all shots in a tournament* should be expected. 7% are worth going ALL CAPS on for the positive and 3% are worth going ALL CAPS on for the negative.

I totally made those number up. Maybe it's 80-10-10 or 75-15-10. I don't care the majority of golf shots deserve the "golf clap" of commentary.

But seriously. Berman thinks that every shot he covers should BE COVERED IN ALL CAPS!!! OMG HE'S TWELVE FEET FROM THE HOLE!!!!

(insert reaction as to whether 12 feet is good or bad,it could go either way on any shot from any position when it comes to Berman)

_____________________
*Where the hell is Elliott? APB on Elliott.

Captain Hate

Oh yeah narc; he's been pulling their ratings gravy train for over a decade so they're not gonna let him fail without employing every conceivable angle.

hit, I used to find Berman pretty entertaining until it seemed that he started reaching for pained wordplay a bit too much; but at least it was his schtick and I could respect how he crafted it. But, as you said, it doesn't translate to golf well at all and ESPN deserves heaps of abuse for force-fitting a square peg into a round hole.

hit and run

You're right,Captain.

I used to watch all the NFL pre-game stuff. Being a Cowboys fan,I would alternate between Fox and ESPN.

Now? I'll watch the game and that's it.

I don't have time for the banality.

Even if a lot of the schtick is fairly (to middling) entertaining.

qrstuv

Conor:

If you're really having a hard time with this, go back and read the first sentence of Steyn's essay.

Your mind is so closed, your thoughts are echoing in your head.

PD

Apparently Friedersdorf is trying for the Human Vuvuzela Award.

Stephanie

I was going to post about Berman last night, but I thought maybe I was the only one that had a problem with him.

I miss Feherty this week.

bunkerbuster

Edit the ad hominem out of Steyn's defense and he's left to argue for the narrowness of his own evidence, rather than its breadth. That's priceless...

narciso

The contrast with that multipart series that implied that WOT veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan were a uniquely criminal class is
the template to consider

Clarice

hit I miss Elliott, too. Let's hope some golf groupies kidnapped him and made him their sex slave or something.

fdcol63

" ... Let's hope some golf groupies kidnapped him and made him their sex slave or something. ..."

Some guys have all the luck. LOL

Pofarmer

Got a challenge for Mr. Friersdorf. Perhaps, to show how important they think it is, he could compare and contrast the column inches in the NY Times given to Muslim Honor Killings vs Abortion clinic murders.

daddy

Great comment Pofarmer.

Watch.

Elliott lurks late.
========

Donald

Thanks for the help ya'll.

Time to go spread my special kind of love in the big city.

Yankee Stadium.  Oh, wait; it's gone.

Bon Voyage.
======

bunkerbuster

Frieder's takedown also points up Steyn's habitual appeal to paranoia. Steyn could have avoided all this simply by writing, or editing or even simply proposing the series on mercy killings he claims is missing from the MSM canon. He chose not to because his real agenda is to reassure readers that their abiding sense of intellectual inferiority comes not because they spurn learning as unnecessary or dangerous, but because the news media doesn't treat their views fairly. And since that's Steyn's real point, he ends up arguing IN HIS OWN DEFENSE, that although the actual number of stories reported on the subject of honor killings show that it is very unlikely a literate American would not be aware of either the extent or origins of the practice in cases where Muslims are involved, that doesn't matter, because the extent of stories don't fully and precisely meet the levels he suggests they should.
Why didn't Steyn just write a fully reported story proposal to the NYT magazine? Then, should the magazine reject it, he could simply publish the proposal and the state objection as very hard evidence that the NYT had an agenda, if indeed his reporting was valid and the rejection politically biased. But again, that kind of real journalism isn't what he does. He's an ideotainer -- an ideological entertainer, who's job is to salve intellectual insecurities, not to report and/or analyze news or, certainly, to referee news coverage levels on political issues.
Or maybe he he's just really lazy, dishonest and contemptuous of his readers' ability to separate rhetoric and reality.

Pofarmer writes: ``he could compare and contrast the column inches in the NY Times given to Muslim Honor Killings vs Abortion clinic murders.''

Pofarmer, shouldn't it have occurred to you to do the research yourself?. Or maybe you're convinced such research is unnecessary. Judging by your statement, you're more than happy to have drawn a conclusion on the issue without learning the facts. I suppose it is good of you to have offered another demonstration of that, even if you really didn't mean to.

Pofarmer

Pofarmer, shouldn't it have occurred to you to do the research yourself?. Or maybe you're convinced such research is unnecessary. Judging by your statement, you're more than happy to have drawn a conclusion on the issue without learning the facts.

Well, yes, I think I know the answer. Do you think, say, the murder of an Abortion clinic Dr. in Phoenix would have MISSED the NY Times, while an honor killing there did not?

Alas, though, the main reason I didn't at least do an article search, is because my Google Fu isn't strong enough to tease out articles only IN the NY Times.

Pofarmer

Wow, that 2nd sentence was terribly constructed. Not enough coffee.

MayBee

Bunky- how is Steyn different from other columnists? How is he different than Friedersdorf himself?
The argument you are making is akin to saying to the movie critic:If you don't like the movie, why don't you just write one yourself?
Or to the person unhappy with a politician: If you don't run for office yourself, you have no business complaining.

In the end, Friedersdorf simply disagreed with Steyn, and showed there was a debate to be had. In starting out by trying to not allow there was room for debate, Friedersdorf demonstrated the closed mind.

boris

MayBee, there is another poster here with the handle "bunky". Also one with BB.

May I suggest either "binky" or "bunko" for the clueless troll.

boris

Po, bretty obvious the binkyfuster, who deplores "belittle" (hate) speech (by helen thomas vs israelis) AND BY R A C I S T - T E B A G G E R S against Muslim-American victims of race-hate, sees no problem with the NYT shielding Muslim-American victims of race-hate from the Evil Eye of Fascist-American race haters.

Let the Evil Eye fall far from these shores instead.

MayBee

Thanks, boris, will do.

Typepad is acting up again today, I see.

Neo

These folks have been huffing their own gas for so long they think it is perfume.

narciso

Even Charles Blow has lost the tingle, story at 11

Ignatz

--Pofarmer, shouldn't it have occurred to you to do the research yourself?--

Said the imbecile whose intense research of world maps revealed to him that Afghanistan isn't in Asia.

bunkerbuster

Maybee opines: ``The argument you are making is akin to saying to the movie critic:If you don't like the movie, why don't you just write one yourself.''
Indeed, that's exactly what I'd say if the critic had access to a movie studios, a budget and was making the claim that the survival of our species was threatened by a political unwillingness to make movies about a certain verifiable event, then, yes, I'd do exactly that: suggest the critic at least consider making the movie himself or explain why he can't.
Steyn never even attempts to compare the actual extent of MSM coverage of the honor killings. Indeed, it's worth point out yet again that HIS OWN DEFENSE is that he never actually claimed that there was no coverage. Rather, his claims were purposely narrowed to categories far narrower than the sweeping claim they were supposed to support (that the media are in a conspiracy to help Islam conquer the West)...

bunkerbuster

Pofarmer asks: ``Do you think, say, the murder of an Abortion clinic Dr. in Phoenix would have MISSED the NY Times, while an honor killing there did not?''

You sound confused. Have you done the research, or not? You seem to be claiming to have know the results, yet to be ignorant of them at the same time. When you figure it out, or do the research, please let me know...

MayBee

Keep in mind Steyn has been tried in a human rights court in Canada. It isn't as if he's been silent or has written without self-sacrifice.

Does what Steyn wrote bother you so much, bunkerbuster?

Ignatz

--(that the media are in a conspiracy to help Islam conquer the West)--

Strawdummy,
Since you're all for exhaustive research and people supporting assertions, could you provide an actual citation that is the "sweeping claim" Steyn made?

Contrary to your false characterization, his claim clearly is that the media are afraid of or reluctant to offend Islam for various reasons, one of which is political correctness.

Barry Dauphin

Frieder's takedown also points up Steyn's habitual appeal to paranoia.

Where's the research for this sentence?

bunkerbuster

Ignatz: I assume you're aware Steyn wrote: "America Alone, The End of the World as We Know It." His paranoid screed about news coverage of honor killings is merely a rehash of the cascading assertions served up in his book about how some very successful media organizations are far too unwilling to join his campaign of hate against Muslims.

Barry, it's in my post. Read it again.

boris

Steyn wrote:

The 2009 NYT piece Friedersdorf cities as evidence that the Times does so totally cover domestic "honor killings" is, in fact, the self-same piece Miss Chesler and I cite, in which the Times pooh-poohs the notion that the decapitation of a Muslim woman in Buffalo counts as an "honor killing".

The implication is that may be the only reference in the NYT to domestic honor kills, and it downplays that possibility. The inference then is that NYT is avoiding (or downplaying) domestic coverage of the issue.

If that is not a fact then the burden of diproving it falls on the disputer. Making excuses for the fact or trying to dejustify the inference following from the fact is not disproving the fact.

As long as facts are on Steyn's side the other side looks like whiny crybabies who just want their binky back in their binkysucking binky holes.

boris

"could you provide an actual citation that is the "sweeping claim" Steyn made?"

binky: "blah blah blah yadda yadda ya"

IOW ... no

Barry Dauphin

Barry, it's in my post. Read it again.

I did read it again. Your "analysis" of Steyn's writing is there, but evidence of "habitual appeal to paranoia" is not.

Ignatz

I note, along with boris, Strawdummy's inablility to provide a citation for his assertion.
I suspect his time would be better spent looking up the definition of paranoid, in any event.
It does not apply to someone concerned about an idealogy which seeks to impose its will on the rest of the world and has made very clear for 1400 years it will do so by any means necessary.

Old Dad

Google "Conor Friedersdorf" and you get about 400K hits.

Google "Mark Steyn" and you get about 800K hits.

Google "National Review Online" you get about 81,000K hits.

Google "Atlantic Monthly" and you get about 5,200 hits.

Jealousy is a bitch.

Old Dad

That should be 5,200K hits for "Atlantic Monthly".

Old Dad

That should be 5,200K hits for "Atlantic Monthly".

bunkerbuster

The flap on Steyn's Muslim takeover book reads:
``Someday soon, you might wake up to the call to prayer from a muezzin.''
Soon? In a few years? This decade? I doubt even Steyn believes that, but, here again, he’s not concerned with veracity, or even, plausibility. He’s here to hype the fear. Without morbid fear, in this case the hysterical fear that Muslims will take over America, Steyn is nothing and no one cares. To call him paranoid is to sidestep the more damning assessment. If Steyn is merely paranoid, his illusions are the product of demons and delusions that decay inward and are harmful to himself alone or, at worst, a few people in his physical vicinity. If we’re less generous and more objective, it’s clear that classic bigotry is the source of Steyn’s ludicrous claim that America will “soon” be a Muslim country. I suppose it is a measure of Western intellectual progress that paranoia sells better than unvarnished bigotry. It hasn’t always been that way and still isn’t in some other places in the world. ``Soon” not enough? How about this, again from the flap: ``Liberals will still tell you that `diversity is our strength‘--while Talibanic enforcers cruise Greenwich Village burning books and barber shops, the Supreme Court decides sharia law doesn't violate the `separation of church and state,' and the Hollywood Left decides to give up on gay rights in favor of the much safer charms of polygamy.'' One of the richest ironies is that Steyn’s hysteria reads very much like the screeds of identity Muslims rallying their own insecure to hatred of the West. Were he born in Tehran instead of Toronto he’d surely be writing speeches for Amadi-Nejad rather than fomenting hatred of Muslims from his wingnut welfare perch in Canada. Steyn’s paranoid style of wild exaggeration and ethnic- and religion-based fear mongering has a long history in fascist and chauvinist movements, from the Nazis to, as mentioned, today’s fake-religious Muslim gangsters and their lackies. “The outsiders are taking over” is surely the battle cry with the richest record in propaganda on behalf of every mass murdering despot there ever was. Steyn maybe popular with a certain type of intellectually insecure, bitter identity conservative, but his paranoid exaggerations keep him on the run from fact checkers of all stripes and his self-impaling attempts to explain such lapses are sure to remain amusing and instructive…

Barry Dauphin

To call him paranoid is to sidestep the more damning assessment.

You're the one who called his writing paranoid. And as far as hysteria goes, your post speaks for itself.

Why so bitter?  Because we are human?

You are indeed, bb, a marvelous illlustration of the paucity and bitterness of the intellect on the left's side of the divide.
==================

bunkerbuster

``called his writing paranoid.''
Yep. Paranoia in the service of bigotry. The Steyn combo.

Barry Dauphin

So you're the one who "sidestepped" the more damning assessment in your own words and you never provided evidence for your assertion when you were tediously insisting that others do so. Busted, bunker.

bunkerbuster

No, Barry, I didn't sidestep anything. I merely pointed out that while Steyn appeals to paranoia and writes in a paranoid style, the basis of his worldview is more likely bigotry rather than mental illness. I gave plenty of examples of Steyn paranoia. If you don't agree, you might consider explaining why. Otherwise, I don't see how you expect to persuade anyone.

boris

Assesment of Steyn's mental health was not what you were tasked with.

"could you provide an actual citation that is the "sweeping claim" Steyn made?"

Which apparently you can't.

Barry Dauphin

BB,my simply pointing out that you did not provide plenty of examples doesn't persuade you, but that only amuses me.

bunkerbuster

Sweeping claims are Steyn's trademark, boris. I suspect you know that, but are so spun into a cocoon of denial, you think it's credible to assert otherwise. I cited several examples, including the ludicrous assertion that Muslims will "soon" be taking over America, replacing gay marriage with polygamy and sending religious police into Greenwich village.
As for the sweeping claim by Steyn that is the subject of Tom's post, I thought that was clear from the post itself? Why now, boris, do you claim to need to be made aware of it? Weird...
Steyn's penchant for pairing grandiose claims and pusillanimous evidence is made more obvious by the fact that he selects a negative proposition, ie what the newspapers DON'T cover rather than what they do, which is virtually impossible to prove while simple to disprove.
Indeed, I have to wonder why the NYT and other big media haven't run an investigative series on Steyn's bigoted exaggerations and misrepresentations. But that hardly seems a subject worth much exploration, given that it's so much easier and valid to simply point to Steyn's record of corrections and near constant need to clarify and narrow initial claims. By now, the editors at NRO, Macleans, etc. know that to publish Steyn is to receive demands for corrections -- but they like his flair for ad hominem and willingness to pretend that jocularity is enough to mask his fundamental bigotry.

bunkerbuster

Barry, How many examples do you need? What would it take to persuade you that Steyn has a long record of comments at odds with the facts? Remember, you started out claiming I didn't provide examples at all. Now you've moved the goalposts. Would could believe you're not ready to simply move them again?

boris

binky's own words:

the sweeping claim they were supposed to support (that the media are in a conspiracy to help Islam conquer the West)...

That was the "sweeping claim" you were tasked to provide an actual citation for.

Have you done that? no

Barry Dauphin

No goalposts have been moved, just using your own words-- you said you gave plenty of examples. Second I asked for the research (and did not enumerate the number of examples since that would depend upon the quality of the research), because you were hectoring others for not doing any or simply providing their opinions.

macphisto

don't worry, bunky...Steyn isn't in Asia.

soccer dad

The Civil War General was actually just a Congressman at the time, named Daniel Sickels. He got off not because of the cultural norms of the time, but because of the then novel (perhaps unprecedented) "temporary insanity" defense.
His victim US Attorney for Washington DC, Phillip Barton Key, son of Francis Scott Key, composer of the Star Spangled Banner.

bunkerbuster

Steyn, writing in the Jewish World Review, May 17, 2004
``In the last few days, the Mirror, a raucous Fleet Street tabloid, has published pictures of British troops urinating on Iraqi prisoners, and the Boston Globe, a somnolent New England broadsheet, has published pictures of American troops sexually abusing Iraqi women. In both cases, the pictures turned out to be fake. From a cursory glance at the details in the London snaps and the provenance of the Boston ones, it should have been obvious to editors at both papers that they were almost certainly false. ``Yet they published them. Because they wanted them to be true. Because it would bring them a little closer to the head they really want to roll — George W. Bush's. If you want to see what the Islamists did to Nick Berg or Daniel Pearl or to those guys in Fallujah or even to the victims of Sept. 11, you'll have to ferret it out on the Internet. The media aren't interested in showing you images that might rouse the American people to righteous anger, only images that will shame and demoralize them.''

Same old, same old paranoid fantasy formula: the media want the war to fail and tilt coverage accordingly.

boris

The media aren't interested in showing you images that might rouse the American people to righteous anger

That was my point when I wrote:

the NYT shielding Muslim-American victims of race-hate from the Evil Eye of Fascist-American race haters.
about domestic coverage. Thanks for confirming that my reading comprehension is much better than yours .... because that's nowhere close to bunko's ...
the sweeping claim they were supposed to support (that the media are in a conspiracy to help Islam conquer the West)...
Wait ... let me guess ... you don't see the difference do you?

The NYT wants to protect muslims from Bad-Americans and doesn't consider muslims a serious problem, apparently like bunkofutzer who also wants to protect illegals from Bad-Americans and doesn't consider illegals a problem at all.

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