Saturday, February 22, 2014

J'accuse: The Cynical Intellectual Laziness of "Leftist" Anti-religious Click Bait

My internet friend RMJ recently noted something that I'd noticed but hadn't articulated to myself before, that a lot of the anti-religious junk on the allegedly leftish blogs is put there because it has a good guarantee of racking up a lot of comments from the neo-atheist haters looking to get their daily does of hate in. That is something that anyone who read Orwell should have recognized, not to mention someone who had been exposed to lots of the more typical manifestation of that media strategy, right-wing hate-talk, call-in radio and TV.   That it was the basis of the right wing domination of broadcast and cabloid media may have blinded me to this pseudo-left practice of exactly the same thing.

The left wing websites consciously and cynically run up their hit-counts, especially those that carry advertising, by posting atheist hate talk.  And they don't care if it has a damaging effect on the real, political left, which depends on people voting for real leftist candidates and causes.

Here's a good example of it, from the often ironically self-named "Truthout."  One of their more productive commentators, "BILL BERKOWITZ FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT" thought it vitally important to warn people of the serious danger of an impending movie from Roma Downey and her husband,  "Son of God".   You might want to read the post before continuing.

Now, I will yield to no one in my hatred of overtly religious-themed movies, especially Bible-themed movies.  They so often get it wrong, they always vulgarize it, they are so frequently and offensively cloying and as frequently supporting exactly the acts of life now that The Law and the prophets condemned, none any more than Jesus taught against.  I just hate, hate, hate.... hate, Bible themed pop-media and movies are the worst.  If there is one thing I agree with the Muslim fundamentalists about, it is that I am against the depiction of God and the figures from the scriptures, even if I oppose their means of discouraging that.

But, while I saw much in Berkowitz's account to not like, the only thing I saw that was really potentially problematic, the obvious and politically motivated demonization of Barack Obama by making the devil look a lot like him, was corrected in editing.

One of the most controversial scenes from The Bible series, in which an actor with a startling resemblance to US President Barack Obama portrayed Satan, has been removed from Son of God.

In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Downey said "It gives me great pleasure to tell you that the devil is on the cutting-room floor. This is now a movie about Jesus, the son of God, and the devil gets no more screen time."

What is especially funny about that is, having been a long time reader of both Buzzflash and Truthout, they regularly carry articles and posts and videos asserting that Obama is the personification of evil and a sell-out to the forces of evil.  And they don't leave that on the cutting room floor.

I don't know if the post linked to above will turn into one of the 1000+ fests of atheist hate talk but that is the obvious reason that online magazines from Alternet to those at the end of the alphabet post lots and lots of pointless, useless, counterproductive pieces of atheist hate talk, that is why they feature "journalists" who have no other theme and who repeat the same old stuff, much of it as dishonest as the talking points of Limbaugh and the rest, in a non-stop loop of fast junk-food to feed the hate-talk machine.

Dozens of pieces on allegedly left-wing magazines and blogs could have been chosen to make this point, you can find them posted on any of them just about any week. None of them are productive, all of them will turn off many hundreds of thousands of people who might potentially vote for real progress but who want nothing to do with the dozens of frequent hate-talkers who you also get to know if you participate in the comment threads on those places.  And I think that estimate of how many of those hate-talkers running up the click count is probably well-fluffed with multi-name sock-puppeteers, some of whom, at times, forget to change socks. Another thing they have in common with right-wing hate talkers, who follow exactly the same strategy of dominating discussions or, at least, getting them off track.

An even bigger question for the left is what the entire collection of these
specialists in hate talk and their intended audience have done for the agenda of the real left left that approaches what Gregory Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice and Michael Walli have done.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting thing about the story of Gregory Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice and Michael Walli: if Rachel Maddow hadn't reported on it, I'd never have heard about it. Still nothing coming up on the internet news sites I frequent.

    Of further interest: Rachel sez they entered the facility and had to wait about an hour for somebody to show up and arrest them. At what is, per her report, supposed to be one of the most high-security areas in the country (especially since it stores nuclear waste and so would, presumably, be a terrorist target. Hmmmmm.......)

    I think they did a brave thing. But nobody wants to notice what happened to them, because it doesn't involve a prominent national figure (even reporting around the Keystone pipeline is all about what Obama will do next. That pipe that burst in Arkansas...fuggedaboutit! It's Arkansas! No politicians were involved! Nothin' to see here!)

    I give up.....