July 14, 2016

"When Trump instead issued a restrained message, expressing a need for moderation, you would have thought he had assumed the mantle of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr...."

"... although under the circumstances, this is precisely the kind of statement any normal politician would make," Writes Neal Gabler in "The Media’s Gift to Trump: Low Expectations"
The media have set the bar so low that we fully expect Trump to be a bigot, as he demonstrated in the anti-Semitic tweet [sic], so criticism of his bigotry is largely relegated to left-wing journalists. It isn’t news. It doesn’t change the narrative.

As for the mainstream media, it is a very short distance from “That’s Trump going ballistic again” to “That’s just Trump being Trump.” But when it comes to drawing political conclusions, it’s all the distance in the world. Similarly, that low bar will inevitably lead to high praise whenever Trump jumps it. A Trump debate in which he is even intelligible or slightly muted would undoubtedly unleash a media torrent of approval: Aha! He is more presidential than we thought. We already are getting a preview of this on the Republican Party side, where any hint of sanity by Trump is embraced in a bear hug. It is part of the process of normalizing him.
Normalizing him, eh? After the media ran with the he's-not-normal meme — and ran it into the ground — it's now time for crying about how unfair it is that Trump only needs to show that he's normal, and it seems special. Gabler would be happy if the approach the media took had worked, but now that it's failed, the media has unwittingly given Trump the gift of needing only to seem normal.

66 comments:

Michael K said...

Gabler is a far left commenter.

Mick said...

The media has nothing to do with "news", it has to do with propaganda. It is a mouthpiece of the state.

rehajm said...

We set a very low bar for the media, too, but they never manage to clear.

sane_voter said...

If by anti-semitic tweet he is talking about that silly six-pointed star, we are rapidly descending to the point where just looking at a jew is considered anti-semitic. Thanks, lefties!

Henry said...

I think it was a Ralph Ellison story in which, post-apocalypse, the Democrats run a perfectly average man and the Republicans run a mutant. "An abnormal man for an abnormal world" loses to the man of average height, weight, age, and family.

This election, however, is between two mutants.

traditionalguy said...

But the writer can still hope that Trump picks Gingrich, who is incapable of normal, over Pence who defines of normal.

Unknown said...

A mind is a terrible thing to destroy with CDS.

MikeR said...

"But the writer can still hope that Trump picks Gingrich". I so hope he picks Gingrich. Gingrich is the one living politician who actually succeeded in beating the system and decreased government. He's got "street cred"; he walked the walk. Gingrich can make it work.
Plus, he loves space, unlike almost all American politicians who only care about space if Boeing is in their district and such.

rhhardin said...

The rifle over the mantle in the first act goes off in the third act.

rhhardin said...

Gingrich is a mindless dweeb. Patter with nothing behind it.

rhhardin said...

Trump needs a Hollywood screenwriter as VP.

Curious George said...

"Mick said...
The media has nothing to do with "news", it has to do with propaganda. It is a mouthpiece of the state."

Sory Mick, it's not. It's the mouthpiece of the Democratic Party.

BDNYC said...

I guarantee you Hillary and her supporters are going to continue to falsely accuse the Donald of antisemitism. They want him to come out and speak forcefully about his Jewish daughter and grandchildren. Lots of Democrats believe there's an enormous amount of antisemitism in this county, so if they can trick the Donald into branding himself a quasi-Jew, great.

Matthew Sablan said...

After spending months calling someone Hitler, you shouldn't be surprised when people realize: "Hey, he DOESN'T want to exterminate an entire race," and give him a second look.

CJinPA said...

Anyone still referencing the "anti-Semitic" Tweet has signaled that whatever follows will not be serious.

JAORE said...

Of course this is a reflection of the partisanship of the press. But there is, IMO, more to it.

The press is not a bright lot. When they held the only voice they were believed in absence of an alternative.

The great unwashed have heard alternatives that ring true and match their experiences in life.

The increasingly hysterical and angry cries of the press are echos of their own failure.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

What CJinPA said.

The article has that "Trump doesn't parrot the talking points that mirror the opinions I like to think I arrived at through my superior intelligence and reasoning ability but were really just indoctrinated into me and I would probably change in a second if my social milieu ceased to support them, so he must be a bigot and idiot" vibe.

Daniel Richwine said...

Luck just keeps following Trump around.

Clayton Hennesey said...

Mike Pence will provide Trump with a eunuch-like Biden normalcy-stability, perhaps putting a lock on Indiana.

Newt Gingrich, a former Speaker of the House, will force a certain loss of contra-Trump ordinariness, but he will at the least put the House and Senate on notice that there will be one Republican program going forward and that everyone had better damn well get with it. That in itself may even help in down ballot races. Gingrich knows the engine room inside and out, including where the mistresses, misterses, and bodies are stashed.

The excessive rumors about Pence lead me to look for a head fake to a reprise of Bush-Cheney, IOW, Trump-Gingrich.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Having read the article's author's info I now think that the guy is a true believer and probably thinks Venezuela's current issues are the result of a CIA plot and that Obama has failed to get the evil shadow government under control.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

The author is probably uneasy with how tight Ms Clinton is with Wall Street, but knows that this email nonsense is just some crap being pushed by Faux News and the GOP.

Hopefully, once Hillary is elected, she will get the money out of politics so that responsible peoples' voices will once again be heard and those who seek to sow discord will be marginalized and ultimately silenced.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

I mean, who could be against immigration? The author's maid and landscaper are really great, hard working people. And do you know how much a white, racist, cracker would want to charge you for that kind of work!

Fernandinande said...

"The Media’s Gift... Low Expectations"

I always have low expectations of "The Media" and am very rarely disappointed.

Unknown said...

> I think it was a Ralph Ellison story in which, post-apocalypse, the Democrats run a perfectly average man and the Republicans run a mutant.

That description is not ringing a bell, but it sounds a lot more like 'Harlan' than 'Ralph'.

Sebastian said...

"After the media ran with the he's-not-normal meme — and ran it into the ground — it's now time for crying about how unfair it is that Trump only needs to show that he's normal" True. Their problem is that they're right that Trump is not normal but wrong about the way he is not normal. Of course, being wrong won't stop them from tagging him as a xenophobic bigot. Unless they are keeping their powder dry, the fact that they are not exposing him as a car-top dog torturer or a high-school hair-cutting bully suggests they actually don't have that much dirt on Trump. Tax returns and Trump U will have to do.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

I would not have thought that Donald Trump had assumed the mantle of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and I can't think of a good reason for doing so.

Paul said...

"Mick said...
The media has nothing to do with "news", it has to do with propaganda. It is a mouthpiece of the state."

Sory Mick, it's not. It's the mouthpiece of the Democratic Party."

A distinction without a difference.

narciso said...

Bill Moyers, seriously, Newt is a little like Boris, brilliant, opinionated flawed, in some ways but that's who you need as a leader of a revolution, the time servers like Cameron and sadly May accomplish little of significance,

dreams said...

"Mike Pence will provide Trump with a eunuch-like Biden normalcy-stability, perhaps putting a lock on Indiana.

Newt Gingrich, a former Speaker of the House, will force a certain loss of contra-Trump ordinariness, but he will at the least put the House and Senate on notice that there will be one Republican program going forward and that everyone had better damn well get with it. That in itself may even help in down ballot races. Gingrich knows the engine room inside and out, including where the mistresses, misterses, and bodies are stashed.

The excessive rumors about Pence lead me to look for a head fake to a reprise of Bush-Cheney, IOW, Trump-Gingrich."

I hope he picks Gingrich who knows how to deal with the media and is experienced too, an exciting ticket. Pence will be an easy target for the media and the crooked Dems. I think he is going to choose Pence but I hope I'm wrong.

dreams said...

"Gabler is a far left commenter."

I remember when Siskel & Elbert left PBS and were replaced by Neal Gabler and Michael Medved. Back then I couldn't have imagined that Michael Medved would become a conservative writer and Gabler a liberal writer.

wholelottasplainin' said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
wholelottasplainin' said...


Blogger rehajm said...
"We set a very low bar for the media, too, but they never manage to clear."

***

That's because they're best at doing the Limbo.

"How LOW....can you GO!!?"

EDH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EDH said...

They're not expecting someone in there like you. They're expecting some clown.

You're different. You're weird. You're a mutant. You're a killer! You're a trained killer!

You're a lean, mean, fightin' machine!

https://getyarn.io/yarn-clip/b3c2d51f-5a91-4113-89cd-ce94a644221f

mccullough said...

Trump looks normal compared to most in the news media. He certainly understand them and they don't understand themselves

Anglelyne said...

Gotta love writers who so whole-heartedly embrace the products of their touchingly childlike imaginations. They work themselves into frenzies over in-group fairy-tales ("anti-semitic tweets"), and spin a whole bullshit worldview out of them.

If I were among the higher-ups of the propaganda-pushers, I guess I'd hire some writers like this to keep the choir preached-at and happy. But I'd get a better class of bullshitter (the kind who's smart enough not to believe his own bullshit) to propagandize the growing numbers of marks who just ain't buying Gabler's grade of bullshit anymore.

Unknown said...

Trump has been in the public eye for decades, long before he was a TV star. And many thousands of people have dealt with him in business. If he were really a rabid racist, crazy, or lacking in professional ethics wouldn't this be in the news?

Unknown said...

"I remember when Siskel & Elbert left PBS and were replaced by Neal Gabler and Michael Medved. Back then I couldn't have imagined that Michael Medved would become a conservative writer and Gabler a liberal writer."

And when they tried to fill those seats, viewers quickly began to understand the concept of low expectations.

Henry said...

@Unknown -- You're absolutely right. Got my Ellisons wrong.

grackle said...

Tax returns and Trump U will have to do.

Naw – just Trump U. Although you will hear it occasionally, the tax return narrative failed because Trump has been audited every year since 2002, which is excessive by any standard, and audited by one of our most corrupt and arrogant government agencies, the Commissioner of which is being seriously considered for impeachment.

dreams said...

"Trump looks normal compared to most in the news media. He certainly understand them and they don't understand themselves"

Not a single person can name one thing that Hillary has ever accomplished other than getting elected and flying around the world over and over again. As Ann Coulter said flying around the world is an activity not an accomplishment. Whereas Trump is an accomplished builder in NY city and contrary to the crooked liberal spin, Trump is well respected and well liked by his fellow businessmen. Though he has never been a politician before, being a builder in New York, he has had to deal politicians his entire adult life and obviously dealt with them successfully.

Laslo Spatula said...

Lamar Gonna Set You Straight....

I'm Lamar, and I'm a Young Black Man, Proud and prone to Anger Issues. I can't help it: living amongst all these White People with their Little White Problems just makes me Angry. Try MY Problems, Bitches...

Damn right Donald Trump is Racist. Everyone knows that. The thing you White People don't get is that Hillary Bitch is Racist, too. ALL you White People are Racist. Every. Damned. One. Of. You…

Then you White People point at other White People and call THEM out as the Racist ones: Fuck That. That only makes you a Racist and now a petty bitch Snitch, and I don't trust no bitch Snitches to have MY back…

You know, that's one of the problems us Blacks have with you White People: you all will turn and Snitch on each other for the stupidest Shit. And no one ever gets shanked for it! Someone questions my Credibility, they gonna lose a kidney. If you all are gonna fuck each other over why should a Brother trust any of you…?

It's Funny: the more you White People pretend to like us the Weaker you get: don't think we don't know that...

You think you got Problems? Fuck You.


I am Laslo.

SGT Ted said...

When the press refused interest seeing in Obamas college transcripts, they forfeited any legitimacy is demanding to see Trumps documents.

Whining about Trump U, while forgoing any interest in the Clinton Crime cartels money machinations also forfeits any legitimacy of criticism.

Their propaganda offensive is failing because it is so patently dishonest and partisan.

The Democrats are running an unindicted criminal for office and they think they can smooth it over.

SGT Ted said...

"Lamar Gonna Set You Straight...."

Crack MC, is that you?

n.n said...

It's worth noting that Trump opposes abortion rites (i.e. "final solution"), channeling Mengele (i.e. Planned Parenthood et al), and rejects class diversity (e.g. racism, sexism) mongering. The projections came fast and furious, but to no avail.

Clayton Hennesey said...

Underground sources now say the kids picked Wally World.

mockturtle said...

It's Funny: the more you White People pretend to like us the Weaker you get: don't think we don't know that...

As always, Laso/Lamar has it right.

Johnathan Birks said...

Good lord. At least Trump holds legit press conferences. You know, where press types ask their pressy questions and the candidate answers? Trump actually enjoys stating his opinions, even when they're nonsensical. When's the last time Hillary did that? I really can't recall. Her handlers must think she isn't too good on her feet...

mockturtle said...

Laslo, that is...;-)

Unknown said...

Indeed, low expectations.

Terry said...

Gabler wrote an excellent bio of Walt Disney.
Then he wrote an essay confessing to one of the Americans sho could not scrape up $400 to pay for an emergency expense.
http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/05/my-secret-shame/476415/

Bill Peschel said...

"When's the last time Hillary did that?"

200 days and running, I believe.

mockturtle said...

@Mick: The media has nothing to do with "news", it has to do with propaganda. It is a mouthpiece of the state.

A mouthpiece of the state and of the entertainment industry, who owns the MSM.

GRW3 said...

I think people only care about tax returns from professional politicians. Like they would actually show how they got fabulously wealthy while never having an hones job in their life.

We know Trump worked for it...

hombre said...

"Of course, the media have created expectations of Clinton too; namely that she is duplicitous and untrustworthy and that everything she says and does is dishonest."

Crooked Hillary created those expectations with her behavior. The media bent over backwards to mitigate them. Are the regular readers at that site really that gullible? Never mind.

hombre said...

"Lots of Democrats believe there's an enormous amount of antisemitism in this county, so if they can trick the Donald into branding himself a quasi-Jew, great." (7:53)

They believe that because of the high level of anti-Semitism among Democrats.

AprilApple said...

SGT Ted @ 11:14

That.

Chuck said...

I know Neal. He was my teacher in a film studies class at Michigan, where he was then a Ph.D. candidate in American Studies. (Michigan did not have a film studies department then.)

Neal had been admitted to Michigan's law school. He tried it and then got out and went into graduate teaching.

Neal was probably in Ann Arbor overlapping at least a couple of years with Althouse.

Neal is one of the most rigorous academics I've ever known. He was among the top five demanding teachers I had at Michigan. Far more than political, Neal was demanding if detail, truth, honesty and rigor. Neal loved work. He didn't go to movies on a Friday. He went to three movies, and he rewrote the screenplays in between.

I have never met Professor Althouse; but I'd guess that Neal Gabler is every bit as hard to categorize, politically, as Althouse.

Michael K said...

I'd guess that Neal Gabler is every bit as hard to categorize, politically, as Althouse.

It's nice you like him. Every jerk needs one friend. Have you kept up with his writings the past 15 years?

I have.

Darrell said...

If there are four empty seats on a cross-country bus, I'd like to see Gabler, shiloh, Ritmo, and ARM fill them. Especially if it's a mountainous route.

gbarto said...

I just keep wondering if Trump isn't being misunderestimated.

Michael K said...

" I'd like to see Gabler, shiloh, Ritmo, and ARM fill them. "

No, ARM has moments of sanity. Unknown would grace that seat nicely.

Jupiter said...

Bill Moyers dot com? Bill *Moyers*? Is that craven lie-hole still above ground? What a tragic waste of amino acids.

Joe said...

It is weird when people invent their own version of someone else and then express surprise when the subject doesn't live up to the fiction.

rhhardin said...

Fox commentator Elizabeth Macdonald says Islamist immigrants ought to know that America was built on respect for property rights, religion, list of stuff, and sexual identity.

Chris Low said...

The Democrats are reeling. their plan to paint Trump and Republicans as racist while pouring gasoline on the fires of racial tension backfired dangerously with the violence in Dallas. Voters are holding them accountable, even if the press cannot without admitting their own culpability. As you suggest, professor, Trump never was the cartoon character they portrayed him as, and by being just a little more careful with his word choices he has made it harder to quote him out of context in order to paint him that way.