Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Katherine Harris and Liberal Hypocrisy

Michelle Malkin takes liberals to the woodshed for their hypocrisy in their continued and unrelenting attacks on Florida Congresswoman, Katherine Harris for her appearance and also for their repeated and coarse references to her breasts while crying "sexism" for every other real or imagined slight. For my part, I am not surprised. People (of all political stripes) often react so when confronted by successful, intelligent and attractive women--particularly when their own arguments are lacking. They foolishly think that by insulting a woman’s vanity, they will shut her up. But Katherine Harris is a big girl and I don’t think she will be moved by any of this. Besides, while I’m no judge of these matters, I think she looks great for woman of her age and position.

Still, it is interesting to note some of the vile things these "enlightened" purveyors of liberal wisdom are willing to say for their cause. Odd that their hypocrisy--first and formost among all sins with most liberals--does not smack them in the face.

Discussions - 42 Comments

There is a deeper issue here than resentment of strong or highly successful women.

Liberal ideology, as it has developed, leaves few grounds for respecting normal boundaries. Thus, a hated public figure’s children can be spoken of in the same terms as the public figure himself, and so on, ad nauseam -- even to the point of physical attack.

Family is not sacred, childhood is not sacred, the clergy and church buildings are not sacred, the flag is not sacred, the elderly are owed no additional respect, a person’s physical appearance can be mocked, and anyone can be accused of anything.

The liberal opposition to hierarchy, natural limits, and tradition, the liberal lust for power, and the liberal tendency to politicize every aspect of life are all at play here.

And play it is not. This problem is deadly serious.

Julie - the link you provided to Malkin’s views doesn’t seem to work.

I don’t like Harris because of the roles she played in the 2000 election that displayed a glaring conflict of interest. I haven’t ever noticed anything about her breasts. Her personal preferences in make-up strike me as unflattering and unattractive, but I don’t confuse this with her politics, and I feel no urge to hurl insults at her for it. It’s simply irrelevant. I’ve seen bad make-up, hairstyles and dress sense on people across the political spectrum.

Frisk, you made a couple of interesting points - I was immediately reminded of when Rush Limbaugh referred to Chelsea Clinton as "the White House dog."

"Bill rapes Hillary. Chelsea conceived."
Drudge Report. But then people tend to imitate their heroes, dont’ they. Dick Cheney(do you still think he’s a hottie, Julie) told a senator not long ago to go "f**k yourself." All great examples from the champions of moral values. I just love it when they trot out their moral indignation!

Your reference to Bill and Hillary would make more sense if it wasn’t written by a liberal Democrat.

David- You said,:

The liberal opposition to hierarchy, natural limits, and tradition, the liberal lust for power, and the liberal tendency to politicize every aspect of life are all at play here. And play it is not. This problem is deadly serious.

Deadly serious? Are you kidding? We started here with an apparent (though I cannot follow the link, either) reference to Katherine Harris’s breasts. That is deadly serious? Isn’t this the same blog that reels in righteous indignation because of the "PC police," and the "thought police"? We are supposed to sympathize with right-wingers because they can’t use their favorite (traditional) derogatory phrases for ethnic groups, or tell those funny rape jokes, because Liberals have somehow taken that fun away.

And now, you have inserted the term "liberal" in front of such unpatriotic phrases as "opposition to hierarchy".!!!!! Gosh, next, those terrible liberals will be pursuing actual equality! What is next? Freedom? Liberty?

"Liberal opposition to tradition"!!!! Which traditions are you referring to? The tradition of joking about Hillary’s ankles, or her masculinity, because she is a powerful woman? The "tradition" of Social Security? The "tradition" of preserving our natural resources? The "tradition" of separating church and state? The "tradition" of setting unethical pit-bulls like Karl Rove after Presidential candidates like John McCain, and discrediting their service and sacrifice?

Your nearly hysterical hyperbole needs to find some "natural limits." Pretty soon, you’ll have liberals riding their horses into your churches, and throwing children out of hospital windows.

You kill me. On one hand, you and your friends defend Karl Rove, Tom DeLay, Scooter Libby, Dick Cheney, and their penchant for "playing hard ball," and on the other hand, you pretend to share some horrified moral wound with Katherine Harris, because someone referred to her breasts. Please.

Fung and Co. -- for decades liberals have ranted and railed at "us" over our use of ascribed status (e.g., women, blacks) in making judgments about abilities. The liberal attacks on Harris are therefore hypocritical...that’s the point. Indeed, I’ve noticed that when a black, woman, or gay politician happens to be conservative, then the liberal establishment quickly becomes guilty of what it accuses us of doing -- using ascribed characteristics to judge and ridicule.

David’s point is well-taken. The Left uses multicultural-speak when it furthers its quest for power, but reverts to raging bigotry when that multiculturalism disadvantages it. Ergo, all you Leftoids miss the point. Saying that conservatives do the same thing doesn’t cut it...we are judging you by YOUR OWN STANDARDS -- something you love doing to us when the opportunity arises.

Julie Ponzi, who are you kidding? Just because Harris is conservative, there is no need for you to defend her appearance. I just don’t believe that you honestly think she looks great. She does not.

Again, without the link, I don’t know how many liberals have talked about Harris’s breasts, but serious people are not attacking her because of her appearance, and I would not take anyone seriously if they did. We attack Harris because, as C. Novoselic said, (comment 2), she represents a blatant and redundant set of conflicts of interest.

Again, if you can find a group of serious, representative liberals who base their opposition on her appearance, I will admit that I am wrong, but my guess is that this whole position is based on a single, or a very few observations by nonrepresentative observers and critics.

Also, my point is that this is a far cry from "deadly serious." War is deadly serious. Terrorism is deadly serious. Unsolved anthrax attacks are deadly serious. Breast jokes are not deadly serious, nor is hypocracy, or the cry of "hypocracy."

As I suspected, MM has quoted a bunch of anonymous bloggers:

will get you to this remarkable piece of journalism. Not a recognizeable name in the bunch. These bloggers are as representative of a liberal platform as Dain and Mack Sandpaper are of a conservative one.

Love your double-standard, Fung. If any conservative says something racist, sexist, etc., then you paint us all with the same brush. For us, however, we have to find a group of "serious, representative liberals" to make our accusations stick.

Well, here’s a commentary by a professor of journalism at Boston U. She notes a few of the press accounts of liberal commentators, no doubt.

Women and Double Standards

So, Fung, I’ll guess you’ll shut up now? Oh...I guess that would be naive of me.

Ok, I just looked at the video of Katherine Harris being fawned by Sean Hannity on Fox, and seriously, all politics aside, her presentation is more than a little laughable. I’m not sure why, but she really does appear to be making a conscious effort to jut out her chest in a ridiculous manner. Well, true, she may look odd and embarrassing, but this doesn’t really matter. What matters is what she says, but in this same interview she says almost nothing of substance. Lots of boasting about how others have described her as a "formidable candidate" or whatever, but not much else. Rather vacuous stuff.

Go back to your library, Eric.

Perhaps I SHOULD shut up! Any day that offers Dain using a female BU prof to make his point is a good day.

I think I’ll have a beer and wait for the Pope to quote David Bowie to make his point.

By the way, Dain, I think that was Erica, with whom you just debated, and not Eric.

And I think his name is Eric.

I used the BU prof. because that’s the coin of YOUR realm, Fung. When your own tribe says you are wrong, ARE. Geez, if you don’t even respect your fellow academics then you really have gone off the rails, Fung. Sad, really.

I also notice that you are capitulating in terms of the substantive argument. Of course, I’ve come to expect that as your SOP.

What capitulation? A bunch of bloggers take advantage of their anonymity to remark about K.H.’s appearance. I have suggested that that does not represent mainstream liberalisim. If you read a bit further in MM’s "article," you’ll see that she complains that conservatives have joined in the fun, as well. Did you read that?

So, my point is, and was, that this is not a big deal, and is not "deadly serious," as David has suggested. Certainly, there is no support for the hysterical generalizations, and doomsday accusations that follow. It’s not like John Kerry, or Nancy Pelosi, or Howard Dean said anything about her appearance!

To add to the stupidity of this argument, as soon as you are challenged, you support your position of superiority by referring to liberal precedent, and liberal writers! If you want to attack liberalism, then find a good, representative position, and attack it, but don’t scrape the barrel’s bottom, and suggest that you have taken on the movement!

Or, if you prefer, go ahead! I don’t care. Whip yourselves into a frenzy protecting Harris’s integrity. No one of any importance is worried about her breasts. We are, instead, worried about how many conflicting interests she can be asked to serve simultaneously.

Certainly appear to be a lot of left turns being made today. Cops, you’re slacking off...let’s get to work on enforcing this blog’s rules.

Fung, you don’t listen very well. If conservatives make fun of someone’s appearance that’s considered tacky and below-the-belt. When liberals do the same, they are engaging in heresy...a direct contradiction of everything they supposedly stand for (you know, equality, inner worth, etc.). And MM was talking about editorial writers and newpaper columnists, hardly the extreme wing of the Democrat Party. Face it, Fung, your beloved liberal movement lives by the double standard...if we do it, we’re evil, if you do’s just a few ne’er-do-wells that don’t represent the party.

And no, I don’t think it’s catastrophic or anything, although it pumps hatefulness into a political discourse that’s already dripping with bile. Fung, you of all people know what de-humanization can lead to.

Correction, I meant the professor at BU who wrote the article I linked, not MM, in the post above.

Ok, and I think Dain’s real name is Danielle. How silly, how boring... Fortunately, the library that I’ve returned to has internet access, so I can keep updated on Danielle’s pearls of wisdom.

Novoselic has nicely got to the crux of this - there’s a big distinction between just insulting someone because of their appearance and between critiquing someone based on their politics, opinions, methods, etc. Both Dems and Repubs have been guilty of this at various times. Sometimes, the motivation for nasty insults against a political or politically relevant figure is based on very substantive disagreements of some kind, as in "I hate this person because I think they and what they believe are harmful in some way, so it makes it that much easier to go ahead and take cheap shots at their appearance, behavioral quirks, whatever...." But not always. As Fung pointed out, via Malkin’s rant, and Dain seems to have ignored (surprise!), even some conservatives have piled onto Katherine Harris as well. Who knows what their motivation is - just an uncontainable nasty streak?

Also, as Fung has noted, the bloggers that Malkin is upset about hardly seem to be part of the "liberal establishment" which Danielle appears to be giving them a major promotion to in comment #6. Further, while their cheap shots at Harris’ appearance are just that - and the BU prof. has made some good points; maybe you could learn more at that website, Danielle! - I suspect that most or all of them ALSO have substantive critiques of Harris, something that Limbaugh was likely lacking when he called 13 yr. old Chelsea the White House dog.

Thank you, Erica. I’m glad you slipped that in before "Traffic Observer" reaches the threshold for illumination and critique.

Dain, I listen just fine. I am not defending anyone who stoops to physical appearances to criticize or dehumanize. I just find it a bit precious when people like Frank pretend a sensitivity to PC issues -- even if it is merely to point out hypocracy.

But, you may have a point regarding my desire to differentiate between liberals and to stererotype conservatives. In psychology, we call this the "outgroup homogeneity effect," and I expect that I am somewhat guilty of it. In short, "my group" enjoys all sorts of variability, and the outgroup is pretty much all the same.

On the other hand, if you ascribe this characteristic to all liberals, and not to conservatives, then you are just as guilty of it as I am.

Finally, a friendly shot at Julie: MM takes liberals "to the woodshed?" You just can’t let go of the physical punishment images, can you?

"I suspect that most or all of them ALSO have substantive critiques of Harris, something that Limbaugh was likely lacking when he called 13 yr. old Chelsea the White House dog. "

Well now how would you know that, Erica? Yeah, you SUSPECT, but it sounds to me like those libs are just doing a bunch of nasty sniping. I agree with Dain’s point: It’s hypocritical that whiny libs cry and moan every time a person is made fun of by conservatives, even when it’s done in good fun and no real harm is meant. But when we cry foul against the same things you’ve been belly aching about, oh, NOW it’s just a joke and isn’t worth getting upset over. That makes NO sense. Julie is right when she says both sides are guilty of trying to take down intelligent, attractive women, but now we on the right are actually trying to say it’s wrong, and you wimpy whiners throw it back in our face?? Unbelievable, truly unbelievable!!!

First, I’m glad it was just a bunch of bloggers making the comments - though comments about Harris’s appearance were pretty widespread in the weeks following Election Day 2000 (even if they weren’t quite as tasteless).

Second, the fact that it was bloggers doesn’t make the criticism any less valid. Matter of degree, maybe, but not on the basic question of validity.

Third, since becoming Chairman (whatever) of the DNC, Howard Dean has been a walking ad hominem machine. And while some Democrats have taken him to task, far more have applauded the red meat and asked for more.

Fourth, don’t complain about the ’tone’ of political discourse or ’civility’ and then give this stuff a pass.

Fifth: I believe Limbaugh apologized for that reference to Chelsea Clinton soon after it happened.

Will Dr. Dean’s apologies be forthcoming?

Well, it seems like we’ve got a bit of a catfight between Erica and Sandra (LOL - Laugh Out Loud), and at this point Sandra looks like shes winning!! I’ve heard plenty of great ideas from Katherine Harris. She’s the best candidate. I only wish I could vote for her. And to be honest I think she’s a real looker too!!

Wooooeeeee, Mack, you said it, ol’ buddy! Mebbe they’ll git ta mud rastlin’ if they keep up this catfight! Sandra has basically repeated everything her right-wing pals have already said, but if you call that "winning," then I guess that’s that.

It is winning, Phil. Come on, you know that such ad hominem, particularly when it comes to genetically-fixed characteristics like attractiveness, is just low. Let’s all admit it’s WRONG and discourage it whenever we see or hear it.

In addition to that, let’s politicize it, and pretend that this issue is important, and a liberal characteristic, and an indication that liberals will stop at nothing...NOTHING!!!! to make Katherine Harris look bad. Let’s pretend that liberals care more about her appearance than they do her politics and lack of ethics. Let’s pretend that right-wingers would never engage in similar small-mindedness. Then, let’s pretend that we don’t see "Hippies Smell" t-shirts gracing every right-wing site on the web. This t-shirted message represents not only a terrible, egregious, hurtful stereotype and a slanderous reference to the collective hygiene of a number of friends of mine, but it is stretched across the protruberant mammaries of a young woman whose politics, I must assume, are in synch with those of this blog and its loyal supporters. She obviously suggests that sexual adventures and lascivious favors follow mindless conformity and agreement with this inflammatory and outrageous message of hate.

I am outraged, and demand that you all apologize to all hippies and genetically smelly people, alike.

Winning or not, Dain, my point is that Sandra hasn’t offered anything new to the debate. She’s just regurgitated what you and others have already posted, so I don’t see how Mack gives her credit for "winning" over Erica.

Hey Phil I just call em like I see em and Sandra definitly whupped Erica. And now Dain is doing the same to you!

Thanks for the support, Mack. Sometimes I feel a little ganged up on by all the Libs (guess they don’t understand what NO LEFT turns means!!!)

Eh, Sandra, ignore ’em. They live and die by the double standard. And winning is everything to them...they turn politics into a religion.

We live and die by the double standard.

Winning is everything to us.

We turn politics into religion.

Ignore us.

I’m still waiting for that apology!

OK, I was starting to believe that Sandra was actually a real person, but now I’m leaning toward the Dain-is-Sandra theory again. I just notice that "they" seem to rush to one another’s defense a little too frequently.

As far as "winning being everything," it’s Dain and Mack who’ve been keeping score (with comments like "I’d say she’s whupping you" and "Dain 1, Fung 0"). So who’s obsessed with winning?

I also think that Dain and Sandra are the same person.

And I still think that Mack Sandpaper is a caricature. If we are all correct, then I think that Liberals outnumber Conservatives on this site!

Libs, 3, Cons, 1

Not that I am keeping score.

I think I’d like to meet you in person, Hal.

OK Phil I’ll PROVE I’m a real person. Not only have I added my email address, I’ll also include a link to my yahoo profile. So stop saying I’m Dain because I’m not!!!

I don’t think that worked. Here:My profile

Holy con job, Batman! Dain’s a girl!

Sandra’s cute (and I’m not). ’Nuff said.

Why thank you, Dain! And don’t be so hard on yourself, being smart and able to beat up on these Liberals is pretty cute by itself ;)

We should support Katherine Harris for
one reason andone reason only- to fight
against character assassination .

These Lefties who control the DNC are
bullies !

If they can destroy someone on grounds that have little or nothin to do with the issues, the gangstercrats can do it to us all !

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