News Flash: Some Journalists Think You Are Stupid

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9 Responses

  1. Jdog says:

    Channeling you-know-who: Patterico's right; Applebaum's wrong. Settle it that way.

    As to Patterico, sure. I find his often True Believerism in the War on Some Drugs appalling, but it's pretty much par for the course among prosecutors; ditto what often crosses over from a sober appreciation of good police work and police officers (which he often demonstrates) into blind faith — but that's also pretty much par for the course.

    That said, I've long since given up on fact-checking him; I've never, once, seen him lie about an allegation of fact or conceal a relevant fact contrary to his argument.

    And, in this, that's exactly what he's caught Applebaum doing: both. She lied about facts around the Polanski case, and ignored, err, inconvenient truths in support of her thesis that the poor babyraper* is being persecuted.

    Orthogonally: I don't know that I'll ever be able to look at a work by any of the defenders of Polanski (excepting his lawyers; it's their job and proper role to defend the guy; everybody, even a babyraper*, is entitled to a defense) without remembering that, when there was no possible good excuse, they chose to make excuses for that disgusting babyraper*. Applebaum, to give the miserable excuse for a reporter the little credit that she deserves, at least had the decency to expose her indecency in her correpondence with Patterico.

    * Hyperbole; Polanski's victim, who he plied with booze and a part of a qualuude before raping her, was actually thirteen at the time, and not a toddler or infant.

  2. Charles says:

    It really is a pity. Applebaum has long been a favorite reporter on international, particularly Eastern Bloc, issues. She is usually clearheaded. I don't know what's gotten into her here other than that she is probably a starstruck acquaintance.

  3. Patrick says:

    Her failure to disclose that her husband, a Polish government official, is lobbying for a Polanski dismissal is inexcusable.

    When Patterico and Media Matters line up on the same page, that's interesting. In fact the most interesting thing about the Polanski matter, to me, is the split that it seems to expose is not a traditional right/left split, but a split that seems to be based on one's attitudes toward celebrity, suspicion toward authority, and inclination to conspiracist thought.

  4. Grandy says:

    Patrick, I've been fascinated by that same, different, split the argument is taking as well. I can't think of very many situations where a rapist would have a sizeable group so ardently defending him. Because this *isn't* a case of a guy having sex with a girl who was shy of the age of consent (setting aside the issue of whether 13 is "too young"). It's a rape case.

  5. Chris says:

    Someone (and sadly, I can't recall who) recently described Polanski as "the OJ Simpson of the elite". I think there's some truth to that.

  6. JanVan says:

    This is my most charitable explanation of Applebaum. She is a working mother with two boys. These days she is very busy and distracted….maybe writing another book too. Her husband is temporarily away on business so she has to pick up the slack. He is Polish foreign minister?

    Anne Applebaum has been winging it for a while and she usually comes off well. This time her quick study technique made her come off like a fool. All kinds of inaccuracies and misrepresentations. She was inclined to side with Polanski the artiste and found herself justified because she never read the material she should have

    She is in too deep to admit how stupid she has been

  7. Jdog says:

    At bottom, it's pretty simple. You're a Hollywood bigshot, who has been told by admirers and colleagues and sycophants for years how smart and goodlooking and perceptive and wonderful you are, and you've long since stopped doubting it.

    Then you find that somebody you've admired — perhaps from a distance, perhaps from up close — and been charmed by — ditto — is, well, a monster. (And make no mistake about it: Polanski, like Simpson, is a monster.) You've maybe shaken his hand, shared a conversation, basked in the charm of his presence and the brillance of his work . . . and you never saw in his eyes that this man would, that he could, carefully separate a thirteen-year-old girl from her mother or any other supervision, than ply that young girl with booze and drugs, then, over her protestations and futile attempts to push him away, could shove her down on a bed and force his penis inside her. Repeatedly.

    Less pampered and priviledged people have dealt with the failure to recognize a monster close to them. Speaking from personal experience: it's one of the most shocking things that can happen when realize what you've seen isn't the mask suddenly coming off to reveal the twisted, evil countenance beneath, but something far more shocking — the realization that the real face has always been there, but you just didn't have the wit, or maybe the character, to see it. And, if you've never woken up in the middle of the night and said to yourself, shit, how the fuck did I miss it? I envy you your good fortune.

    So it's easy: you just paste a mask on and pretend that it's the real face, and as the rest of the pampered pets nod and admire the mask, and say it just has to be the real face, while thinking because, otherwise, we've honored and befriended and been befriended by and clutched this monster to us because, well, it just has to be that way. Doesn't it?

    After all, you're smart and goodlooking and rich and perceptive. After all, everybody else in the crowd says so.

    Like I said: it's easy to explain.

  8. Bob says:

    He could have been a monster 30 years ago and deeply regret his drug-addled decision now. However! That doesn't give him the pass that some Hollywood elite seem to want him to get.

    If he were some out of work slob who watched TV all day and lived in his mom's basement these same people would be demanding he be locked up. And then not give it a 2nd thought.

  9. Patrick says:

    If he were some out of work slob who watched TV all day and lived in his mom’s basement these same people would be demanding he be locked up. And then not give it a 2nd thought.

    In another context, Chris Rock said it best:

    OJ was famous, that’s the only reason he got off – if he was anyone else, the only thing he’d be known as was “Orenthal the Murdering Bus Driver.”