Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Stupidity With Bonus Bigotry (or at Least the Suggestion of Bigotry)

Somehow, I’ve largely managed to avoid writing about a blogger named Jim Hoft who writes under the handle Gateway Pundit (please don’t bother clicking the link; I’m afraid that you’ll lose IQ points just by doing so). I’ve often seen other bloggers refer to Hoft by such lovely sobriquets as “the dumbest blogger alive” or “Jim ‘Dim’ Hoft”. I’m not ready to go quite that far, but I couldn’t resist addressing the article Obama Holds Lunch with Congressional Leaders But Excludes (Jewish) Majority Leader Eric Cantor that he posted today:

Barack Obama asked Congressional leaders to the White House today for lunch. He did not send an invitation to Majority leader Eric Cantor, who is Jewish.

Obama doesn’t much like Eric Cantor. He chided Cantor in 2010 for bringing a copy of Obama’s health care plan to Obama’s health care talks.

Hoft then includes a video of President Obama “chiding” Rep. Cantor followed by an embedded article from Politico that includes the following:

The group was limited to only the top congressional leaders: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Speaker John Boehner and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

That left out House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. The president and Cantor had a famously tense encounter during the debt ceiling talks — White House staff said Cantor repeatedly interrupted Obama toward the end of a meeting, Cantor’s staff said Obama walked out. But they have in recent days begun working together on a legislative jobs package designed to help small businesses get access to capital.

So why bother posting this? First, note the title of Hoft’s post. What’s the point of referencing the fact that Rep. Cantor is Jewish? Does that have some sort of relevancy to the story? Then Hoft repeats this fact again in the first paragraph of his article … and immediately follows that with the claim that President Obama doesn’t like Rep. Cantor. Of course, his sole basis for the claim that the President doesn’t like Rep. Cantor is the fact that President Obama “chided” Rep. Cantor back in 2010 and that they had a “famously tense” relationship. Of course he ignores the fact that the article he quotes notes that President Obama and Rep. Cantor have “begun working together”. More importantly, though, is that at least to me it appears that Hoft is suggesting that President Obama doesn’t like Rep. Cantor because he is Jewish. Why else make repeated reference to Rep. Cantor’s religion. Hoft doesn’t tell us the religions of Speaker Boehner, Sen. Reid, Sen. McConnell, or Rep. Pelosi, does he? Nope. He just singles out the Jew. Why? Why was that an important fact to mention, not once, but twice?

Now let’s look at this for a brief moment and you’ll see why some people call Hoft the “dumbest blogger alive”. Who was President Obama’s first Chief of Staff? Rahm Emanuel. Jewish. His current Chief of Staff is Jack Lew. Orthodox Jew. Who is President Obama’s top political advisor? David Axelrod. Jewish. President Obama has made two appointments to the Supreme Court. One of those was Elena Kagan. Jewish. I could go on, but it seems pointless.

But just in case you think I’m being hypersensitive or reading into Hoft’s comments something that isn’t there, it’s worth looking at what readers of Hoft’s blog have to say. Below are a handful of selected comments:

  • It’s what I would expect of a closeted Muslim.

  • Mitch McConnell is also a Quisling and traitor. I wish evil on Boehner and McConnell. They’re repeated attempts to appease this Muslim Brotherhood plant in the White House is treasonous.

  • What else would you expect a Marxist Kenyan mooslum POS Jew hating A-hole to do…that is not news…this a$$ wipe hates America and all allies…

  • Jim, Muslims don’t eat with Jews.

There are other comments simply bashing President Obama, bashing Speaker Boehner and Sen. McConnell, and even a few noting that perhaps it was appropriate to exclude Rep. Cantor because only the top two leaders from each chamber were invited. But the religious aspects and overtones of Hoft’s story don’t seem to have been missed by his readers (one of whom even notes the irony of Hoft’s suggestion: “Jewish? Yes, there are no jewish democrats, that’s well known!! sheesh.”).

In any event, I think that the post is illustrative of just how Obama Derangement Syndrome really works. This is the sort of thing that passes for discourse on the right and these sorts of invented issues are what we need to continue vigilantly fighting against.

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