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The Reviews Are In!


sessions trump

And Donald Trump’s key target audience loves his new choice of campaign Grand Poobah:

Donald Trump’s campaign is under new management—and his white nationalist fanboys love it.

The campaign’s new chief executive, Stephen Bannon, joins from Breitbart News—where he helped mainstream the ideas of white nationalists and resuscitate the reputations of anti-immigrant fear-mongers.

White nationalists today invest a lot of energy worrying about growing Hispanic and Muslim populations in the U.S. Turns out, Breitbart News spends a lot of time worrying about those things, too. And in Bannon, they see a media-friendly, ethno-nationalist fellow traveler.

“Latterly, Breitbart emerged as a nationalist site and done great stuff on immigration in particular,” VDARE.com editor Peter Brimelow told The Daily Beast.

VDare is a white supremacist site. It’s named after Virginia Dare, the first white child born to British colonists in North America. Brimelow said he and Bannon met briefly last month and exchanged pleasantries about each other’s work.

“It’s irritating because VDARE.com is not used to competition,” Brimelow added. “I presume that is due to Bannon, so his appointment is great news.”

Brimelow isn’t the only prominent white nationalist to praise the Bannon hire. Richard Spencer, who heads the white supremacist think tank National Policy Institute, said he was also pleased. Under Bannon’s leadership, Breitbart has given favorable coverage to the white supremacist Alt Right movement. And Spencer loves it.

In fairness, Breitbart has really been motivated by economic anxiety. And you can’t deny that Trump has landed one of the world’s preeminent documentary filmmakers.

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  • Craigo

    You should always double down on 17. I learned that in Trump University’s Blackjack 101.

  • hickes01

    Isn’t “White Supremacist Think Tank” an Oxymoron?

    • J. Otto Pohl

      Not really, the South African government promoted a whole academic discipline dedicated to justifying aparthei called volkekunde. All the Afrikaans language universities had a department devoted to it. The volkekundiges sought to provide an anthropological/ethnological justification for separate development rather than biological and genetic ones. There is a pretty strong parallel between South African volkekundiges and Soviet ethnographers in their use of culture rather than biology as the underpinning justification for differential treatment of human groups.


      • LeeEsq

        Your missing a very obvious joke.

        • J. Otto Pohl

          I guess I am. But, I think it is a mistake to think that all racists are stupid and uneducated. That certainly wasn’t the case in South Africa or Nazi Germany. The argument against racial discrimination is a moral one not that the people supporting it are lacking in intelligence or learning.

          • Ask Me Gently

            Educated? Maybe. Stupid? Yes.

          • Pat

            Thanks for this, J. Otto.

          • Nobdy

            The argument against racial discrimination is a moral one not that the people supporting it are lacking in intelligence or learning.

            This is an extremely pernicious and false statement. Of course part of the case against discrimination is that it’s intellectually based on a pile of lies. The Bell Curve isn’t just bad because it’s immoral it’s bad because it’s terrible ‘science’ and flat out wrong. The intellectual basis for discrimination is white superiority, which does not exist in any realm. And the ‘intellectual’ inquiry you’re talking about is teleological ‘support these bullshit conclusions’ garbage, not actual intellectual inquiry.

            What are you talking about racists aren’t stupid? Individually some may be smart about certain things, but as a whole their arguments are always stupid and always based on ‘evidence’ that isn’t evidence of anything except their own racist views.

            The idea that we reject racism only for morality has within it the implication that racial difference may be real but it’s just not nice to talk or act on them. No.

            Racism is immoral AND it’s stupid. Those who support it and provide its arguments are ideologically driven and produce intellectually worthless work.

            They may not personally be ‘stupid’ in the “Get a Brain Morans” way, but the ideas they promulgate are shoddy and wrong.

            • J. Otto Pohl

              There is a difference between being wrong and being stupid. If you think that Dr. Malan was a moron I think you are deceiving yourself.

              • Nobdy

                The work was stupid and wrong. It proceeded from false premises to false conclusions.

                Whether the man himself had a high IQ is irrelevant if he is producing work that is intellectual garbage.

                • J. Otto Pohl

                  Malan instituted apartheid in 1948 in South Africa in order to monopolize the country’s resources for the white (especially Afrikaner) population. This included the further subordination of Black labor to benefit the white population. I am not sure what was a false premise or stupid about his policies. They accomplished their goals. They were immmoral and ultimately not sustainable. However, I am not getting how they demonstrate that Dr. Malan and others involved in formulating the policies were congnitively deficient. But, please continue to live in your fantasy world.

                • Nobdy

                  You have now changed the conversation to whether Malan was an effective realpolitik oppressor, and of course he was. But the intellectual framework for his actions (for example the comparative intelligence and capacities of the races) was complete garbage. I have already said that certain racists can be smart about certain things (such as administration) but the ‘racist’ part is never intellectually sound at all.

                  Insofar as he believed the racist bullshit he was peddling he was accepting stupid arguments and acting stupidly. That doesn’t mean he can’t be an effective politician or administrator but it shows real intellectual weakness.

                • Thom

                  J. Otto said, “Malan instituted apartheid in 1948 in South Africa in order to monopolize the country’s resources for the white (especially Afrikaner) population.”

                  One important correction is that this had been the policy of the South African state since its creation in 1910. The part about uplifting the Afrikaner population had been true since 1924, when the first version of the National Party came to power, in alliance with the (white) Labour Party.

                • CD

                  I’m afraid J. Otto is impressively right here.

                  (1) On the general point, you can easily be racist without believing in biological racial difference. In fact in the history of racism, the biological bit is a pretty recent development.

                  (2) Lots of smart people believe wrong premises.

                  So of course, wrong logic and wrong facts need refuting, but you still need a moral core. In other words the moral and the logical/evidentiary need to be in dialogue with each other. Each does work the other cannot do.

                  Genuine stupidity also exists, but the urge to just label what you reprehend as stupid is counterproductive.

              • MPAVictoria

                If you are always looking at the evidence and coming to obviously incorrect conclusions I think calling you stupid is a fair assessment of the situation.

                • J. Otto Pohl

                  Malan did not come to a false conculsion unless you are buying South African propaganda justifying apartheid. As I noted above the purpose of apartheid was to further monopolize the country’s resources especially Black labor for the benefit of the White especially Afrikaner minority. This is exactly what happned. White poverty largely disappeared as a result of the forced transfer of resources from the Black majority. I am not sure how you can claim Malan was stupid being that the policies he implemented from 1954 to 1962 ensured absolute political and economic dominance of his group until 1994.

                • Nobdy

                  Your claim that the South Africans didn’t believe their own racist propaganda is unfounded. Many obviously did. Most racists are not dispassionate administrators using racial arguments they don’t believe in for resource acquisition.

                • LeeEsq

                  Apartheid was also designed to prevent the nationalization and centrally planned economies that were fashionable at the time from being implemented in South Africa. Most private property was owed by White South Africans before Apartheid and Apartheid was designed to keep things this way.

                  Depending on what you think about economics, you can make an argument that as evil as Apartheid was, it prevented South Africa’s economy from being a basket case like most of the other post-colonial economies in Africa and Asia. This does not even come close to justifying the horrific abuses of Apartheid though.

                • Thom

                  LeeEsq. said, “Apartheid was also designed to prevent the nationalization and centrally planned economies that were fashionable at the time from being implemented in South Africa.”

                  This is incorrect. The National Party portrayed itself as an opponent of Communism, but in fact much of the economy under apartheid was state owned and the state was in alliance with the cartel that controlled the mining sector. As in the rest of the world, much of the state owned economy began to be privatized in the 1980s (under apartheid), and this accelerated after the ANC came to power under democracy in 1994.

                • Thom

                  Nobody said, “Your claim that the South Africans didn’t believe their own racist propaganda is unfounded. Many obviously did. Most racists are not dispassionate administrators using racial arguments they don’t believe in for resource acquisition.”

                  Right. For someone who claims to be right wing, J.Otto’s understanding of history is remarkably and crudely materialist, as if there were no such thing as ideology, culture, or emotion (not to mention gender, sexuality, etc.) and that these elements of humanity played no role in historical change.

            • Origami Isopod

              The ideas are shoddy and wrong, yes. That said, they were and are being promoted for reasons that are rational — in the sense of “rational” meaning “devoid of emotional reasoning, to include empathy.”

              I think it absolutely makes sense to separate intellect from morality here. Malan et al. are and were liars, and to varying extents they lied to themselves. Foolish vs. wise, maybe. But stupid vs. intelligent doesn’t work here. It’s a question of ethics. To paraphrase Einstein, the intellect is a tool – “it has powerful muscles, but no personality.”

              • J. Otto Pohl

                You are going to lose your “progressive” credentials for agreeing with me. According to the established orthodox “progressive” view everybody who disagrees with collective ownership of the means of production is mentally retarded.

                • Thom

                  Are you under the impression that it is 1935?

                • J. Otto Pohl

                  Thom why don’t you tell us how Malan was mentally retarded?

                • Thom

                  I agree with J. Otto that there was an intellectual apparatus behind the political movement that instituted apartheid. Many of these men were intelligent, though wrong. Apartheid built on an intellectual framework that was common throughout the Western world before fascism discredited much of it.

                  I think that apartheid was far more complicated, and notably changed in many ways during its 47 years, than commenters here suggest.

                  ETA: just to be clear, apartheid remained evil and oppressive throughout its history.

                • Origami Isopod

                  Jesus Christ, Otto.

              • bender

                As Thom alludes further below, the intellectual framework on which the racial ideologies of Nazism and apartheid were built were mainstream academic views in the sociology, anthropology and criminology departments of elite American colleges and universities and their medical schools from the second half of the nineteenth century into the 1920s. The eugenics movement of the Progressive era arose from the same intellectual sources. The scholars who researched and developed these theories had the highest academic qualifications of their era and many of the people who embraced racist ideologies were well educated. To say that all these people were stupid renders the word “stupid” meaningless.

          • LeeEsq

            As George Orwell would put it “there are some things so stupid that only intellectuals believe them.” Racists can be well educated and intelligent but they think their intelligence can lead them down some very dark rabbit holes. See Wagner and his ideas on Jews and music as an example. Wagner was a brilliant musician but when he combined his theories on music being rooted in the national soul/soil and the fact that Jews at the time did not have a country, you got some very dumb and dark ideas that Jews could not really produce music.

            • ajay

              you got some very dumb and dark ideas that Jews could not really produce music.

              This from a contemporary of Mendelssohn!

            • bender

              An example from an earlier period in European history is witch hunting. During the earlier centuries of the Middle Ages, the Church taught that Satan was weak and any magical powers he claimed were illusions. Most trials for the practice of witchcraft involved only a few accused individuals, torture was not used to extract confessions, people were able to obtain acquittal by bringing character witnesses, and the death penalty was rarely imposed.

              In the late Middle Ages and the early modern period, doctrine shifted in both the Catholic Church and various Protestant movements from “witchcraft is a delusion” to “witchcraft is an international Satanic conspiracy.” The new theory was propagated by intellectuals; folk beliefs about witchcraft were different and hadn’t changed. This is when you got mass trials in which the accused were forced to name co-conspirators and hundred of people died in prison or were executed. After about three hundred years, the intellectual climate changed again to “witchcraft isn’t real,” and after considerable struggle between the churches and Enlightenment intellectuals, the witch trials were stopped.

  • Craigo

    One aspect of this drama that’s flown under the radar – Breitbart now likely has full access to Republican data lists. Millions, perhaps tens of millions of birds ripe for the plucking. Even if (when?) Trump loses, they’ve already won.

    • Warren Terra

      So, according to the reporting of The New York Times:

      Mr. Trump’s elevation of Mr. Bannon and Ms. Conway also highlights the growing influence of Robert Mercer and his daughter Rebekah, conservative donors from Long Island. The Mercers are investors in Breitbart, and their foundation funds a host of other conservative activist groups. They spent millions on Senator Ted Cruz’s behalf during the Republican primary, an effort Ms. Conway helped lead. And they began bankrolling a pro-Trump “super PAC” in recent weeks after becoming friendly with Mr. Trump, his daughter Ivanka and her husband, Mr. Kushner.

      Initially I was worried that this threatened my observation about Trump, that he seemingly had no friends or close associates except for people he employed or who made money from the connection, in which category I place his family; after all, these influencers were “becoming friendly with Mr. Trump”. But then: they’re investors in Breitbart, which investment was likely made a lot more valuable in the last 48 hours given the new prominence of Breitbart’s core executives and the resources they have been given access to.

      • ThrottleJockey

        At that level is there ever such a thing as true friends? It’s all about business partners at some point and in this case it’s a political alliance of convenience.

        I’ll tell you what though Mercer’s backing proves my point that Ted Cruz was simply a less provocative demagogue than Trump.

        • Nobdy

          At that level is there ever such a thing as true friends?

          I think the answer is…yes…of course. Say what you will about the Clintons but they seem to have a circle of friends they really care about and trust. Maybe in some cases this seems like a detriment (like with Blumenthal) but they do seem to have true friends.

          And of course there is the very public friendship between Obama and Biden.

          If you’re just talking about rich people then there are lots of examples of very rich people with very close true friends.

          Some of these people may also be business partners, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t true friends.

          Trump lacks true friends because he is a malignant narcissist not because he’s a powerful politician and rich. This has been a big problem for him because the only people whose counsel he seems to be willing to take are A) Yes men and B) His family, to a lesser degree.

          This is reason 94 why he would be an epic disaster as president.

          Hillary, in comparison, is known to be a very good listener (maybe too good) and has a large number of people who she could turn to for advice, some of whom, like Terry McAuliffe, don’t currently rely on her for their livelihoods and could presumably give their honest opinions.

      • But then: they’re investors in Breitbart, which investment was likely made a lot more valuable in the last 48 hours given the new prominence of Breitbart’s core executives and the resources they have been given access to.

        Valuable in a non-monetary sense though. Mercer is not a grifter the way Trump or the Breitbart guys, or so many other on the right are. He doesn’t need to milk the rubes for money. He and his daughter are looking to influence policy.

        • lunaticllama

          Mercer got in early at what’s rumored to be one of the most profitable investment funds in the past couple of decades (the Medallion fund, closed to new investments for years at this point) run by a hedge fund (he’s a senior person at the hedge fund, Renaissance Technologies.) His investment in Breitbart is probably more akin to charity and influence-seeking than an actual part of a business plan.

          • Yeah, they’re Renaissance Technologies money. I used to work at a cultural institution around there and know both of them on sight. Ugh.

  • Says Who?

  • JonH

    So I’ve seen this aspect of the Trump campaign described as National Populist.

    Would that make them NAPIs?

    • Warren Terra

      Perfect for an impulsive toddler like Trump.

  • rhbrandon

    Steve Bannon, the “Ignoramusable Hulk”.

  • Amadan

    I see the germ [sic] of the alt-right Murdochopoly. In fact, given the heights to which Breitbart has risen since the demise of its namesake, one has to wonder if investors in Trump News (‘Breitbump News’? ‘The Treit Network’?) are looking forward to The One Stooges retiring to a similarly mystical role, where grubby reality doesn’t interfere with The Legend.

    • CaptainBringdown

      You’re not the only one thinking this way.

      Sounds plausible to me.

    • Todd

      I think this sort of thinking overestimates how little people will care about what Trump does or says once Hillary cinches 270 electoral votes.

      He doesn’t have a public office to which he can return. Republicans will go from being embarrassed by him and worried about him to outright publicly hating him and blaming him overnight.

      Breitbart.com is not really situated to help much in this scheme, except for providing some “content”. While it has seen growth by wedding itself to Trump’s candidacy, Breitbart isn’t even in the top 100 news/media websites as measured by traffic.

      Starting a news network is really hard. Murdoch was a true billionaire who already owned several large prestigious news organizations and a large US television network. Ted Turner was a true billionaire at a time when that really meant something, and he already owned a portfolio of profitable national network/cable channels. NBC is NBC.

      Could Trump rent some studio space and send some news programming out over the airwaves and internet? Sure. Can he do the years of hard work necessary, and spend the many millions of dollars necessary to get onto your cable/streaming system (and actually become profitable by securing consistent national advertising)? Pretty big longshot.

      • Nobdy

        The term “news network” is being overstated here.

        Trump is not going to start the next Fox News or CNN (starting a TV network right now is pointless anyway since TV is starting to die.) Instead if he starts something it will be similar to Glenn Beck’s “The Blaze.” A website that might get carried by some specific cable providers, but no real news-gathering operation (not that Fox or even CNN REALLY have those at this point) or sprawling organization.

        Beck has never been a billionaire and while he does have a background in cable news Trump can hire producers and technical people.

        The thing about an operation like that is that it can make a lot of money even with a relatively small audience because its audience becomes obsessive and will buy whatever snake oil it’s selling. The Trump News Network will feature advertisements for overpriced gold and Trump branded merchandise and could rake in tens of millions of dollars a year even with an audience of only a few hundred thousands or a couple million at most.

        It will also give Trump the attention he craves and allow him to throw events where thousands will come to watch him speak (which he clearly loves and thrives on.)

        Why would Trump build something like CNN or Fox News? He’s not interested in managing a news organization. He wants money and attention. The Blaze is a better form of pure grift.

        • Todd

          Even something like Blaze took many millions of dollars, and several years of proven growth in an online only format before it got access to dish/cable distribution. Beck had established a national radio production company many years ago. He spend most of the last 20 years establishing a tv/radio following, which he leveraged with other media/merchandising. Beck is a nut, but he is a nut who is willing to do the mundane tasks. He has built a real media property, over many years, and at great expense.

          • Nobdy

            Trump will have enough financial backing to build the Trump News Network. He has a huge following and name recognition Glenn Beck could never dream of. He has also spent the last 30 years as a de facto entertainer in the public eye, including professionally on The Apprentice (which means he DOES have a TV background, just not in news, but this kind of news is not distinct from entertainment.)

            Someone else will do the mundane tasks. Trump will just get on TV and shout at people, like he did on the apprentice. It worked for a decade in that format it could work again,.

    • ajay

      are looking forward to The One Stooges retiring to a similarly mystical role, where grubby reality doesn’t interfere with The Legend.

      For some reason this made me think of the Emperor of Mankind, locked immobile for the last 10,000 years in his yuuuuge Golden Throne since he was crippled in his battle with the heretic Hillarus. IN THE GRIM CLASSINESS OF THE NEAR FUTURE THERE IS ONLY TRUMP.

      • Tony Pius

        BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD! SKULLS FOR THE SKULL THRONE– and these are, really, folks, just the best skulls. Everybody says so. Absolutely the best.

        • ajay

          Believe me, I am incredibly popular with the Orks. The Orks love me.

          • wjts

            “‘You have to keep great people around you,’ Trump told CNBC. ‘You always have to be on top of them. And you have to be smarter than they are. I hear so many times, “Oh, I want my Primarchs to be smarter than I am.” It’s a lot of crap. You want to be smarter than your Primarchs, if possible.’”

            • ajay

              We will build a Warlord-class Titan, fifty feet high, and the Eldar are going to pay for it.

              • Redwood Rhiadra

                Fifty feet is kinda small for a Warlord…

                • Tony Pius

                  “Oh, yeah? The Warlord just got 10 feet taller! Now, we’re going to need some greenstuff, and we’ll use this wire for scaffolding.”

                • wjts


                • ajay

                  Fifty feet is kinda small for a Warlord…

                  You know, he referred to the size of my Warlord-class Titan – “if it’s small, something else must be small” – I guarantee you there’s no problem there. I guarantee.

              • wjts

                “Look, having Immaterium—one of my sons was a great psyker and scientist and engineer, Magnus the Red of the Thousand Suns; good gene-stock, very good gene-stock, OK, very smart, the collective reincarnation of every Neolithic shaman, very good, very smart—you know, if you’re a Human, if I were a xenos, if, like, OK, if I ran the galaxy as an Tyranid Hive-Mind, they would say I’m one of the smartest entities anywhere in the galaxy—it’s true!—but when you’re a Human they try—oh, do they do a number—that’s why I always start off: The collective reincarnation of every Neolithic shaman, was a good student, went there, went there, did this, built a galaxy-spanning Empire—you know I have to give my like credentials all the time, because we’re a little disadvantaged—but you look at the Immaterium deal, the thing that really bothers me—it would have been so easy, and it’s not as important as these lives are (Immaterium is powerful; my son explained that to me many, many years ago, the power and that was 10,000 years ago; he would explain the power of what’s going to happen and he was right—who would have thought?), but when you look at what’s going on with the four Chaos Gods—now it used to be three, now it’s four—but when it was three and even now, I would have said it’s all in the messenger; xenos scum, and it is xenos because, you know, they don’t, they haven’t figured that the Humans are smarter right now than the xenos, so, you know, it’s gonna take them about another 15,000 years—but the Eldar are great negotiators, the Farseers are great negotiators, so, and they, they just killed, they just killed us.”

                • redrob

                  I know it’s obvious, but +40K.

  • CrunchyFrog

    For a long time most reporters in the MSM have gone out of their way to pretend that the GOP is not dominated by white racists. Heck, I remember a post from Kevin Drum back in the day (can’t remember if this was Calpundit or early Washington Monthly) that said that the number of white racist voters didn’t make up more than a low single digit percentage of the total – and this from a specialist in market segmentation metrics. Most people really don’t want to deal with a reality that in the most red states like Oklahoma and Mississippi the majority of voters are driven primarily by racial prejudice – so they’ll do everything they can to deny it.

    So now I’ve been expecting the MSM to sorta recognize that Trump’s base is white racist voters, but to pretend they are a fringe and that the rest of the GOP “isn’t like that”. But they haven’t even done that despite the mountains of evidence provided. Oh, they’ll point out that David Duke likes Trump and that Trump lies his ass off, but there hasn’t been any depth of reporting in the MSM on the fact that so many – probably the majority – of Trump’s crazy memes are straight from open white supremacists including a massive number of re-tweets, indicating that white supremacist sites are the source of most of the news Trump consumes.


    I know they are desperately afraid of offending a large part of the population, but the MSM really needs to point out clearly that Trump isn’t the second coming of Barry Goldwater, he’s the second coming of George Wallace or Strom Thurmond. Not coincidentally, the last two times third party candidates won electoral votes.

    • AMK

      Republicans racists buy sneakers too.”

      • ThrottleJockey

        I don’t think Jordan is backing Trump…

        • Warren Terra

          You’ll never know, Jordan is dedicated to avoiding any political relevance, presumably because he doesn’t want to alienate any potential customers. It was a huge shock when he recently donated money to criminal justice reform, and even then he felt compelled to donate an equal sum to police welfare organizations (not that police welfare is a bad cause, but it’s problematic to perpetuate the idea it’s antithetical to criminal justice reform).

      • Snarki, child of Loki

        “Need lumber for that cross-burning? Home Despot can help.”

        • N__B

          It’s almost a cross.

      • Bitter Scribe

        There’s some question as to whether Michael Jordan really said that.

    • cleek

      this AM NPR was talking with one of Trump’s campaign people about Bannon, and asked how Breitbart’s explicit racism was going to help the Trump campaign. they read the headline about Bill Kristol the “renegade Jew”. Trump’s guy just said (paraphrase) “well, Breitbart isn’t joining the campaign; Steve Bannon is bringing his media expertise.” the host was skeptical and pushed back until he ran out of time.

      if this stuff is apparently starting to make even the scardey-cats at NPR ask questions like that, there may be hope yet.

      • Srsly Dad Y

        Agreed, but you pushed my NPR button again. You know what, F them for that running out of time thing. Pretape the damn interviews like the BBC does, ask what you need to ask, edit out the BS, and run the good stuff. It really, truly does not matter to me whether I am hearing a live interview at 7 a.m.

        • cleek


        • cleek

          also, NPR.com is now shutting off comments, so i can’t even go there to complain about how they let the Trump gang run over their hosts, day after day…


          • howard

            I grew so disgusted with npr news during the run-up to the war in Iraq that I stopped listening and now turn it off even for the top of the hour reports between shows I like.

            Haven’t missed it a bit.

          • Origami Isopod

            NPR.org, rather. And no great loss.

            Just 4,300 users posted about 145 comments apiece, or 67 percent of all NPR.org comments for the two months. More than half of all comments in May, June and July combined came from a mere 2,600 users.

            … a Google estimate suggested that the commenters were 83 percent male, while overall NPR.org users were just 52 percent male, Montgomery said.

            And a plurality of these guys are right-wing shitheads.

            A user named Mary, from Raleigh, N.C., wrote to implore: “Remove the comments section from your articles. The rude, hateful, racist, judgmental comments far outweigh those who may want to engage in some intelligent sideline conversation about the actual subject of the article. I am appalled at the amount of ‘free hate’ that is found on a website that represents honest and unbiased reporting [snerk – ed.] such as NPR. What are you really gaining from all of these rabid comments other than proof that a sad slice of humanity that preys on the weak while spreading their hate?”

            This is to me a separate issue from Nice Polite Republicans being a worse-than-useless “news” organization.

            • efgoldman

              And a plurality of these guys are right-wing shitheads.

              So they run the software to count clicks and ip addresses, but can’t be bothered moderating the comments.
              The RW commenters must read/listen specifically so they can slag the comments threads – they don’t generally support NPR or public broadcasting.

            • Joe Bob the III

              All I can say to that is: Well, duh. Unmoderated anonymous comment sections always turn into cesspools and news sites are magnets for the absolute worst of it. Hell, I’m amazed at the racist claptrap people will post under their real names on sites that require a Facebook login.

              A funny thing I have noted with the website of my local paper: They have moderated comments but when it comes to any news involving African-Americans they don’t even attach a comment thread to the story. I suppose if you are deleting more comments than you are approving it’s just not worth even starting the thread

              • Origami Isopod

                Unmoderated anonymous comment sections always turn into cesspools and news sites are magnets for the absolute worst of it.

                The question is, why didn’t NPR moderate their comments sections? Was it because it was just too work-intensive, or did they figure that the flamewars would draw eyeballs?

                They have moderated comments but when it comes to any news involving African-Americans they don’t even attach a comment thread to the story.

                I’m seeing more and more newspapers do that with stories that bring out either racists or misogynists.

                • Caepan

                  The question is, why didn’t NPR moderate their comments sections? Was it because it was just too work-intensive, or did they figure that the flamewars would draw eyeballs?

                  My own experience in public broadcasting makes me think that if they did have someone at NPR whose job it was to moderate the comments, that person would be an underpaid staff member who was also required to do three other jobs as well, with no overtime pay.

                  Just easier to get rid of the comments section and lay off that staffer, then shift those three jobs to someone already doing three other jobs.

                • Joe Bob the III

                  I vote for too work-intensive.

                  Per the article, NPR found that a miniscule percentage of readers used the comments and a small subset of them were responsible for most of the comments. There are lurkers who read the comments but never participate…but still a tiny proportion of the readers. So, definitely not a lot of eyeballs involved.

                • twbb

                  Might have had something to do with liability; moderating comments puts you more at risk for things your commentors say under section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

    • CrunchyFrog

      Here is an interesting take from inside journalism trying to explain the approach that is being taken towards Trump, both why they openly call him out for lying and why they are loathe to point out the white supremacism.


      • jim, some guy in iowa

        interesting, thanks. kind of ironic, isn’t it, that the tolerant & pluralistic reporters find themselves working at being tolerant of people who hate their guts

        • CrunchyFrog

          And when the tolerant, pluralistic person eventually reaches a breaking point and says something like “this whole group is racist” they are immediately pounced on – “See, it’s really the left who is intolerant!”

  • brad

    One of the bizarre things about Bannon, and Breitbart, is that he and it appear to be at least partially funded by Seinfeld money.
    (That’s a long piece, the relevant point is he bought part of the syndication rights early on and, well….)

    • Srsly Dad Y

      Not that there’s anything ….

  • Alex.S

    “They will soon be calling me MR. BREXIT!” -Trump’s twitter account

    I… sure. I’ll call you that.

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