As note not only in recent posts but for some time now I have called out the double standard that the mainstream media has been applying in "grading" the 2016 presidential candidates and the manner in which many pundits and news anchors fabricate a false equivalency between Donald Trump's outrageous statements and innumerable lies and statements or actions of Hillary Clinton and/or Democrats in general. The latest example is found in the feigned shock that Hillary Clinton accurately identified a large segment of Trump's base of support as outright bigots and racists as well as homophobes and anti-immigrant extremists. Sometimes the truth hurts but it does not make it any less the truth. A piece in Esquire looks at this irresponsible double standard and the manner in which Trump continues to figuratively get away with murder as anchors and pundits disingenuously grade the candidates' behavior on a bizarre curve so that Trump does not immediately come up failing. Stated another way, these "journalists" ignore the duty they owe to the public and ignore the fact that similar irresponsible conduct allowed the nation to go to war in Iraq based on lies. Here are article highlights:
And "basket of deplorables"—the phrase that pays for every cable-news wastrel in the mob . . . there isn't anything in that quote by which anyone who's spent five minutes at a Trump campaign rally in the past year seriously can be offended.
Nonetheless, the people who have attached themselves to a campaign that prides itself on not being politically correct immediately grabbed their badly chafed fee-fees and started screaming for safe spaces. And much of the elite political press immediately went into an ensemble chin-stroke—sagely parsing HRC's math down to the third decimal place and, yes, deploring the level to which the campaign has sunk. Or else they lit a candle at the altar of the Church Of The Savvy and whispered about what terrible politics it is to point out that bigots act out of bigotry. Is it exactly half? Maybe not, but it's damned close to it and everyone following this campaign knows it. Which brings us to Grading On A Curve.
Are we grading El Caudillo del Mar-A-Lago, who doesn't know enough about any issue to throw to a cat, on a curve? The answer can be seen plainly enough in how everybody now is pretending that what HRC said isn't god's own truth, or how everybody is arguing that you can't say that stuff out loud because to do so is unkind to white people who are so concerned about unfair trade deals that they go to freaking Stormfront to argue about it. Talk about grading on a curve. There is an accomplished woman saying something everybody knows is true and there is a vulgar talking yam who apparently could set his own dick on fire and not pay much of a price for it on television. That is grading on the curve, but it's nothing new.
Hell, we've been grading Republicans on a curve for decades. We graded Reagan on a curve when he burbled about trees and air pollution. We graded him on a curve during Iran Contra on the grounds that he was too dim to know what was going on around him. We graded W on a curve for the whole 2000 campaign when he didn't know Utah from Uzbekistan, but Al Gore knew too much stuff and what fun was he, anyway? We graded Republicans on a curve when they attached themselves to the remnants of American apartheid, when they played footsie with the militias out west and with the heirs to the White Citizens Councils in the South. We graded them on a curve every time they won a campaign behind Karl Rove or Lee Atwater or the late Terry Dolan back in the 1970s. We talked about how they were "reaching out" to disillusioned white voters who'd suffered in the changing economy, as though African-American workers didn't get slugged harder than anyone else by deindustrialization. We pretended not to notice how racial animus was the accelerant for the fire of discontent in the "Reagan Democrats." That was, and is, grading on a moral curve.
We graded Republicans on a intellectual curve when they embraced a fundamentalist splinter of American Protestantism and brought themselves to a pass in which they are the 21st Century Know Nothings.
It is timidity now that grades this ridiculous man running this ridiculous campaign on the biggest curve of all—the timidity of a people who have declined the responsibilities of serious citizenship and the abdication of its duty under the Constitution of a putatively free press too timid to call them on it. That is the political correctness that truly is hurting the country and may yet hurt it beyond all repair. There's only one candidate now running however gingerly against that.