May 16, 2014

"Every generation has its great personal controversy, a name or two that evoke passion and fury everywhere from the dinner table to the editorial pages."

"Our parents had Alger Hiss and Whittaker Chambers. Their parents had Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti. Our generation has Clarence Thomas and Anita Hill."

Those are the opening lines of Nina Totenberg's 1994 review of "Strange Justice: The Selling of Clarence Thomas," by Jane Mayer and Jill Abramson. I was looking up old reviews of the book, because the fall of Jill Abramson is the big story of this week (in the United States, anyway). I thought the lines were funny because who knew in 1994 that Monica Lewinsky would soon arrive on the national scene, delivering her extra-large pizza-with-everything that, as a controversy, would eclipse this little pubic-hair-on-a-Coke-can that had (such a short time ago) seemed so generation-definingly meaningful?

And now, here we are, 20 years later, and Abramson has risen beyond her co-authored book about the empowered black man and the gender victim, up through the heights of the NYT and summarily ousted, herself possibly a gender victim, and — look! — they replaced her with a black man. That's the kind of strange justice called poetic justice. It's hard to sort through all of this and figure out what was fair and what was unfair. Alger Hiss and Sacco and Vanzetti — they were all guilty, right? And what of Clarence Thomas? Well, let's see what Totenberg said about what Mayer and Abramson said:
There is no way in a short review to summarize all the bits and pieces of evidence that Mayer and Abramson have amassed. But among other things, they have turned up many new witnesses who testify that Thomas had an avid interest in pornography at the time of the alleged Hill harassment — harassment that Hill said involved his talking to her about pornography. One woman, Kaye Savage, a civil servant who worked in the Reagan White House and who was friends with both Thomas and Hill, describes her shock when she walked into Thomas' apartment and found the walls covered with pictures of naked women. Several co-workers are quoted as saying they heard of Thomas' making remarks about pubic hairs on Coke cans — one of the most peculiar things that Hill alleged, and one that she was accused of making up.
Are "pictures of naked women" pornography? I wonder if civil servant Kaye Savage is shocked when she walks into an exhibition of impressionist paintings. So... the evidence is, the man liked pornography. That puts him into a set of just about 100% of men. Now, if you told me civil servant Savage was shocked when she walked into Thomas's apartment and found the walls covered with pictures of Coke cans or pictures of single strands of pubic hair, that would be some impressive corroboration.

Totenberg continues:
Mayer and Abramson have also spent a considerable amount of time examining the lives, loves, careers and ambitions of Thomas and Hill. Thomas comes out as an often brooding, angry and contrary man....
The angry black man. The classic stereotype of a black man. And now, replaced by a reputedly amiable black man, Jill Abramson is exposed to the world as the classic stereotype of a successful woman: the bossy bitch.

The arc of a generation is long, but it bends toward poetic justice.

115 comments:

Deanna said...

That was wonderful. Laughed out loud at last sentence.

Rumpletweezer said...

If we grant every charge that was made against Clarence Thomas, how does he compare to Bill Clinton, Ted Kennedy, and Chris Dodd?

damikesc said...

Didn't Hill follow him to jobs after this, even after a new boss asked her to stay?

YoungHegelian said...

Our parents had Alger Hiss and Whittaker Chambers. Their parents had Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti. Our generation has Clarence Thomas and Anita Hill.

That Ms Totenberg thinks Thomas & Hill in any way approached the moral weight of either Sacco & Vanzetti (who ended up dead) or Chambers & Hiss (where both spied for the mortal enemy of their country, with Chambers repenting of it) shows me yet again (as if I needed another example) of what a lame asshole Nina Totenberg really is.

Her dad was a much better exemplar of humankind can be at its best.

Jim Gust said...

What Deanna said. Ditto.

Freeman Hunt said...

So what are our one or two names?

gerry said...

A great post.

of what a lame asshole Nina Totenberg really is

Also, a great post.

hombre said...

It is a tribute to the emerging effeteness and moral equivalence of our society and the silliness of our journalists that in 1994 Totenberg would lump the Thomas-Hill drivel with Hiss-Chambers, Sacco-Vanzetti.

The attention being showered on the Abramson firing confirms that we have truly arrived.

MayBee said...

Genius.

I wonder what Anita Hill would have said if Clarence Thomas had ever punched a wall in rage in front of her.

mezzrow said...

Yes, I am enjoying this as well.

Carry on. You're on a roll.

It's a target-rich environment.

Smilin' Jack said...

Now, if you told me civil servant Savage was shocked when she walked into Thomas's apartment and found the walls covered with pictures of Coke cans or pictures of single strands of pubic hair, that would be some impressive corroboration.

Actually, that would have been evidence that Thomas was a connoisseur of modern art, and all would have been forgiven.

St. George said...

Boring, boring, boring. This and the NY Times story, too. How twee.

Michael K said...

Thomas is still hated by the left and no wonder, black voters may be slipping away in spite of the deck of race cards played.

That challenge looms even as a recent Wall Street Journal-NBC News poll suggests that support for Mr. Obama is waning among likely black voters, complicating matters for Democrats in key Senate races. Another poll, this one from Pew, shows a considerable contingent of likely black voters "leaning" toward generic GOP candidates.

OMG "Dogs and cars living together !"

Mass hysteria ! .

Bob Ellison said...

This kerfuffle reminds me of Apple's "Cube" computer. The media and the Apple world were horrified by what appeared to be slight cracks or other blemishes in the plastic case of the computer. Most of us shrugged and wondered what fuss was about. I asked an Apple fan, and he said it was all because Apple presented its hardware as not just functional machines but as beautiful images.

Similarly, the NYT presents itself as not just an news-presenter, which it really still does rather well, but also as sort of a gathering of philosopher-kings and -queens, which is does badly.

So they can't get away with this. They can't say, "hey, Abramson just didn't work out," which is what any normal company would say, maybe with a little more detail, when firing the chief of production. They're all tied up in knots of their own devising.

The Crack Emcee said...

Rumpletweezer,

"If we grant every charge that was made against Clarence Thomas, how does he compare to Bill Clinton, Ted Kennedy, and Chris Dodd?"

I think this is the forth or fifth time someone's tried that ploy today:

Why do whites keep thinking SQUIRREL!!!! is a winning argument?

Forget Bill Clinton, Ted Kennedy, and Chris Dodd - they're not Clarence Thomas - if you grant every charge that was made against Clarence Thomas, then what?

AJ Lynch said...

Abbott & Costello?

AJ Lynch said...

I never heard my parents [born in 1917 - 1918] mention Sacco or Venzetti or Hiss or Chambers.

Mr. D said...

Freeman Hunt said...
So what are our one or two names?


I think it was supposed to be Valerie Plame and Scooter Libby, but I suspect Edward Snowden has taken the lead.

Lydia said...

And now, replaced by a reputedly amiable black man, Jill Abramson is exposed to the world as the classic stereotype of a successful woman: the bossy bitch.

But a bossy bitch with tattoos. Surely that worked on some in the newsroom. But maybe not enough to offset those it irritated. Or maybe she should have flaunted them -- from an interview with Out just a month ago:

You have a tattoo of a subway token, I was wondering when you're interviewing someone particularly hip or young do you use it as street cred?

--I don't flaunt my tattoos.

Oh wow. You have more than one? So this isn't like a celebrity who wears non-prescription glasses to try and look smart, this isn't a cover to look hip?

--It's become for me a strange form of personal hieroglyphics. I have now four. I think eventually, when I finish doing them, will tell the story of me, of where I lived, and what things have been important to me. That doesn't mean that I have my kid's pictures tattooed... I have two then on my back that are the two institutions that I revere, that have shaped me. One is unsurprisingly the amazing 'T' in The New York Times newspaper. Then I have a Crimson Harvard 'H' and that's for Harvard, and also for my husband Henry, who we met when we were in the same class at Harvard. ... And now I feel like shooting myself for spending, like 10 minutes, talking about such a trivial thing.

Titus said...

Thomas is gross.

AReasonableMan said...

I'm starting to prefer the Benghazi posts.

Writ Small said...

Writing like this is why I keep coming back to Althouse despite my better judgment.

The Drill SGT said...

Ted Kennedy and OJ

Jane Fonda and Tom Hayden

Ayers and Dohrn

mikee said...

You know who else had pictures of topless and nekkid women on just about every wall of his house back in the 1980s & 1990s?

The head of the Pediatrics Dept at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Frank Oski, who was a very strong advocate of breast feeding for infants.

Big Mike said...

Sacco and Vanzetti — they were all guilty, right?

Most of the articles I've read, like this one, argue that Sacco was guilty, Vanzetti innocent.

Big Mike said...

Forget Bill Clinton, Ted Kennedy, and Chris Dodd - they're not Clarence Thomas

Thomas could get a partial lobotomy and be brighter than all three of them put together.

Skeptical Voter said...

Tottenberg was and remains a clueless twit.

As for la affair Abramanson, what can I say, other than that Karma is a bitch.

mccullough said...

Progressive causes célèbre never pan out.

SJ said...

This story creates a handful of questions in my mind.

If Anita Hill knew that Clarence Thomas talked, at work, about porn-related subjects, why did she ever visit his apartment?

My work experience is entirely post-President-Clinton, so I don't have any memory of how men and women interacted in the workplace before the era of Sexual-Harassment-prevention.

But I can't imagine any woman who hears such from a superior being willing to visit that superior's house/apartment.

Have things changed that much since the mid-80s?

garage mahal said...

I'm starting to prefer the Benghazi posts.

Yea, wasn't there a huge rally of 10-30 million Right-Wing Patriots in D.C. to arrest Obama today? Right wing media strangely silent about it. That would be fun to talk about.

wildswan said...

The Fifth Tattoo on Jill could be the fourth; it could be the T crossed out

SJ said...

@Crack,

On the one hand, the question is this:

Do sexual misdeeds disqualify a person for high office?

If the answer is "yes" in the case of Clarence Thomas, does it then follow that the answer is "yes" in the case of Edward Kennedy, Chris Dodd, Bill Clinton, or Newt Gingrich?

If the answer is "no" in the case of Kennedy/Clinton/Dodd/Gingrich, is it also "no" in the case of Clarence Thomas?

I notice that of the men I named, only Newt Gingrich left office after the sexual misconduct became a public scandal.

This is not yelling "SQUIRREL", this is a serious question.

Why, or why not, should a public official step down under allegation of sexual misconduct? What kind of misconduct should lead to public scandal?

If the official should step down, why did Kennedy/Dodd/Clinton remain in office, and Thomas remain as a candidate for Supreme Court?

Why did two of these men get so much negative attention from the press?

Why did the other three receive so little negative attention (even after one of them was impeached for his scandalous deeds)?

The Crack Emcee said...

"So... the evidence is, the man liked pornography. That puts him into a set of just about 100% of men."

But,…? (Sigh.) Fine - let me do it:

The evidence actually was that Thomas had "walls covered with pictures of naked women" at home.

And that was from a "friend" working in the Reagan White House. Ron and Nancy would want us to think that mattered.

So sure, most men own some porn in a lifetime, but - unlike Long Dong Silver fans - here's what we should be really measuring:

What percentage of the male population do you think are black Robert Crane's of the Right - seemingly-assimilated Republican black males whose sexual fetishes are displayed upon entering the house?

Very small, I'd think, no matter how much I like the imagery as a way to get new folks in the party.

Also, in the case of Thomas - rather than the "angry black man" - the word Totenberg uses that leaps out at me is "contrary".

"High tech lynching" will forever be his own, so his claims to being racially deaf, dumb, blind, and/or mute - today and especially in the bloody past - reveal a man, at the very least, dealing with some complicated psychological/racial issues that only he may know.

Blacks certainly find him a strange bird, and that's not just because he's a Republican. He's got no "flow" as we say in Jazz.

Anita Hill, still, at least has that,...

Big Mike said...

@SJ, it's because Clinton, Kennedy, and Dodd were overseers who ran the plantation, Thomas ran away from it.

Lucien said...

Was any explanation ever established for the hair-on-the-coke-can thing?

One can easily imagine two black people having a laugh at a story about some clueless white person seeing a curly hair on a can and assuming it was a public hair --even though the idea is implausible. But that's just my conjecture about how such a comment could come to be made.

Skipper said...

Just more from the leftist attack machine, spewing gibberish and half truths to see what sticks. Such as Romney murdered an employee's wife and paid no taxes and the Koch's are responsible for the climate.

Larry Nelson said...

His picture collection should have been submerged in urine.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Nina Totenberg, Linda Greenhouse, and Jeffrey Toobin--what did the Supreme Court do to deserve this lot?

Anonymous said...

Many in the sisterhood won't be pleased, Althouse.

Not joining the choir is one thing, but actively calling out bad singing is another.

Singing is a serious affair over at the temple.

You've gone rogue.

Michael K said...

"This is not yelling "SQUIRREL", this is a serious question."

Then it's lost on Crack. Thomas is the most accomplished black man in the past 30 years (and yes you heard that right.)

The black left hates that, It will get worse as more and more leave the plantation.

Jon Burack said...

Crack Emcee,

As far as I am concerned I did not at the time care a bit about the charges against Thomas which seemed utterly trivial to me then and still do. I thought the witch hunt against him a new low at the time. This post by Ann brought the idiocy of it all back perfectly and precisely. So what do you say? I am not thinking Squirrel, now, am I? Does that mean I am not white?

The Crack Emcee said...

SJ,

"@Crack,

On the one hand, the question is this:

Do sexual misdeeds disqualify a person for high office?"

I don't think it's a question at all. Anita Hill was speaking to the man's character, which - last time I checked - is still how one behaves when they think no one's looking. By all accounts, he seemingly failed there. Even his wife, Virginia's, later "olive branch" to Anita Hill didn't deny Hill's claims. She was asked and said "Yes, the man was a creep."

Edward Kennedy, Chris Dodd, Bill Clinton, and Newt Gingrich - add Uncle Tom to the list.

They all are proponents of the willingness to deceive, rather than allowing everyone to be on the same page about what values and ideas we're adopting and/or being subjected to.

Another creep isn't so far-fetched, is it?

Ann Althouse said...

@lucien

I agree. You've got a coke can. There's a little hair on it, and you say for fun, who put the pubic hair on my coke can?

There's really nothing there. Why did we ever hear about it? I guess because it's pretty casual for an office setting, but it's not anything to remember.

If the underlings laughed, maybe he was obtuse not to figure out that they thought that kind of talk is inappropriate, but what did it mean?

I do understand the idea that it meant he didn't grasp the way women feel in the workplace, but it is one little slip, and it's only about acting like the workplace is hanging out with friends, and there should have been many more things like this for it to justify the attack.

The attack was based on opposition to conservative judges, but the President picked and we had a conservative President.

The Crack Emcee said...

Big Mike,

"@SJ, it's because Clinton, Kennedy, and Dodd were overseers who ran the plantation, Thomas ran away from it."

Um, the Republican Party has now reversed that symbolism - it is they who represent the plantation. Thomas is your "Uncle Tom," at your knee and at your service. The others aren't like that.

It is Tom who doesn't want to leave as the other 97% have. It is he who didn't see any killings to be concerned about, or hear any bad talk that affected him, or suffer discrimination from not voting or nothing financial - just like Duck Dynasty and Cliven Bunday and Donald Sterling and all the rest of The Illustrious I'm-Not-A-Racist Crew say. He's one of the good ones.

AND YOU CAN'T MAKE HIM FEEL GUILTY, GODAMMIT!

Who'd you say was "running away," from something, again?

madAsHell said...

the hair-on-the-coke-can thing

I thought it was a coke bottle, and it was implied that a woman had been masturbating with it. That's my recollection at least.

Ann Althouse said...

@madashell

Absolutely not.

Look it up. It was a can and it was not about masturbation.

rhhardin said...

Back in the late 70s, when the first color display arrived on the scene at work, it wasn't a day before a naked woman test picture was up.

Before that, in the mid 60s, there was an effort to suppress a naked woman bcd printout, which only resulted in its multiplication in backup punch card decks.

Naked women keep coming up where guys are at work.

The printout problem was compromised by adding bcd cat pictures to the population, so the women had something to put over their desks too.

The Crack Emcee said...

Michael K,

"It's lost on Crack. Thomas is the most accomplished black man in the past 30 years (and yes you heard that right.)"

The black left hates that, It will get worse as more and more leave the plantation."

Yep, that's all I hear out here amongst blacks - hatred for accomplishment.

That's so stupid I can't keep going,...

Ann Althouse said...

"I don't think it's a question at all. Anita Hill was speaking to the man's character, which - last time I checked - is still how one behaves when they think no one's looking. By all accounts, he seemingly failed there. Even his wife, Virginia's, later "olive branch" to Anita Hill didn't deny Hill's claims. She was asked and said "Yes, the man was a creep." "

You need a citation for that. I'm not seeing that quote. Do you mean to ascribe that quote to Thomas's wife? Do you assume that the wife's effort at reconciliation is a concession rather than just niceness and a desire for peace?

The Crack Emcee said...

Like a Holocaust denier, I see Michael K is also attempting to spin slavery, but to white advantage.

He's a great guy,...

Michael said...

Clarence Thomas was born in Pin Point Georgia in conditions that would make suburban Compton look like Beverly Hills. No father. Raised by a tough grandfather. Hard life. Success after many missteps. A man to celebrate, a story to be read with care for its humanity.

The vile woman who followed him from job to job has earned her obscurity which is more than her mediocrity deserves.

David said...

The problem with writing bad books (and reviews) is they look even worse as time passes. Mercifully for the authors, most are forgotten. Fortunately for us, we are sometimes reminded.

Big Mike said...

@Crack, in my analogy, you represent the house negro. The men and women who traded decent clothing, warmth in the winter, and a good roof over their heads in exchange for keeping the massa informed when a field hand was thinking of running off from the plantation.

You keep running around pushing this idiotic notion you picked up from your masters that what's wrong with 21st century Black inner city families is 19th century slavery and early 20th century Jim Crow. But it isn't white Republicans who are impregnating teenaged inner city girls, is it? Any white guys in the inner city gangs? The only president who ever made any effort to improve the education of inner city children was George W. Bush. That's the reality. And this is now. It's not the 1850s, and it's not the 1950s. It's today. Try to get your head around that.

I went to college in the 1960s. I demonstrated for civil rights. I listened to Martin Luther King, and when I judge people according to the content of their character instead of by the color of their skin, it is clear that Clarence Thomas is a great man. You, not so much.

Big Mike said...

Yep, that's all I hear out here amongst blacks - hatred for accomplishment.

Funny, I've heard about that too. The only accomplishments allowed are sports, entertainment, and Democrat politics.

The Crack Emcee said...

Ann Althouse,

"You need a citation for that. I'm not seeing that quote."

ROTFLMAO!!! Lawyers.

"Do you mean to ascribe that quote to Thomas's wife?"

No, I was clumsily paraphrasing Anita Hill - it's always hilarious, to me, when my ignorance bumps up against your education:

"You need a citation for that. I'm not seeing that quote."

SOMEBODY CALL THE HALL MONITOR!!!! ROTFLMAO!!!

"Do you assume that the wife's effort at reconciliation is a concession rather than just niceness and a desire for peace?"

Without concession, what is there to reconcile, or be nice about, and would that result be peace? Was it even a nice gesture? Clarence Thomas IS a Supreme Court Justice. Anita Hill gets to lick her wounds.

I say Virginia should've kept her mouth shut and felt lucky there's no God,...

Ambrose said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cassandra lite said...

This was particularly good. Brava!

The Crack Emcee said...

Big Mike,

"@Crack, in my analogy, you represent the house negro."

Oh - I have GOT to heart this:

"The men and women who traded decent clothing, warmth in the winter, and a good roof over their heads in exchange for keeping the massa informed when a field hand was thinking of running off from the plantation."

I'm confused - which "plantation" are we on, again? The Dems of the Reps - I'm a Rep so help me out.

"You keep running around pushing this idiotic notion you picked up from your masters that what's wrong with 21st century Black inner city families is 19th century slavery and early 20th century Jim Crow."

My "masters". That would be the black people who raised me, right? And my friends and family I grew up with? I can't even paraphrase correctly, so a little assistance, please.

"But it isn't white Republicans who are impregnating teenaged inner city girls, is it?"

No, it's the lack of a true value system that resulted in this behavior, which IS the fault of whites - they made the damned thing. American law, morality, etc., has no credibility. Slavery supported by the Bible. Mixing good and evil like America has offered no guidance to anybody. Expecting a people the country keeps broke to fix centuries old problems, alone, is both cruel and - for a society - the height of madness.

"Any white guys in the inner city gangs?"

Of course there are - where you been?

"The only president who ever made any effort to improve the education of inner city children was George W. Bush. That's the reality."

Which is really an outline of failure - blacks have been here since the 1600s. Hooray for white people! You did it!

"And this is now. It's not the 1850s, and it's not the 1950s. It's today. Try to get your head around that."

And white people still talk like mental patients, thinking they sound perfectly sane, as everyone slowly backs away from them and votes for anybody who denounces every manifestation of what they've historically stood for - like telling blacks it's we who are the violent delusional ones.

"I went to college in the 1960s. I demonstrated for civil rights. I listened to Martin Luther King, and when I judge people according to the content of their character instead of by the color of their skin, it is clear that Clarence Thomas is a great man. You, not so much."

Another white lecturer who heard Martin Luther King's message - well, only that one line of that one speech (again) anyway. Inspiring.

You DO know he was murdered, right? Tell me, what have you done since then, Mr. I demonstrated for civil rights? Did you assume the work was done, and the field was level, and everybody loved us now?

Or did you - like whites after Reconstruction - immediately switch sides and become critics of blacks and the poor? We're not doing it right - now - not in the 1850s, and not the 1950s, but today?

Yeah - YOUR hero, MLK, would be right there with you.

Goodness, you guys are willing to shame yourselves, something awful, trying to gain a short-cut to the high ground,...

The Crack Emcee said...

Big Mike,

"Funny, I've heard about that too. The only accomplishments allowed are sports, entertainment, and Democrat politics."

Neil deGrass Tyson would beg to differ,...

David said...

The Hill-Thomas relationship had something very strange going on, but I think it's foolish to try to decipher what. Neither of them is ever going to change their version. Too much emotion. Too much at stake. And there are no third parties who can ever clarify it. I've not seen one who I felt might be reliable.

Somehow they had each created expectations and hopes that resided in the other and were greatly disappointed. Who knows what it was.

The alleged transgressions do seem pretty tame in the light of subsequent events involving higher office than the Supreme Court.

Michael K said...

"Like a Holocaust denier, I see Michael K is also attempting to spin slavery, but to white advantage.

He's a great guy,.."

I accidentally saw your comment. "Spin slavery "???

The crack epidemic is over.

rcocean said...

Great Post.

Maybe a little OT, but 20 years later, and I'm still disgusted at that "high-tech lynching". The left showed they would stop at nothing - short of murder - to keep a conservative Black man off the SCOTUS.

People forget Thomas not only hired Anita Hill, he gave her a job when he moved to a new agency, and eventually found her a Law Prof Job. Years after the so-called "harassment" she was still socializing with him and requesting he speak at her law school.

And she didn't say squat when he was a confirmed as an Appeals Court Judge. Of course, in the end she got her 30 silver coins and more.

Michael K said...

"Yep, that's all I hear out here amongst blacks - hatred for accomplishment.

Funny, I've heard about that too. The only accomplishments allowed are sports, entertainment, and Democrat politics."

I guess that's what he meant about slavery. I hear that comment too from African blacks and West Indian blacks. They feel so sorry for American blacks who can't get over the victim thing.

Richard Dolan said...

"The arc of a generation is long, but it bends towards poetic justice."

Poetic justice, in that usage, is a combination of just desserts and a 'goes around/comes around' notion. But absent an active Providence, there's not much to the idea that any generational arc is bending towards or away from Justice however conceived.

Crazy Jane said...

I struggle with this. We have had an effective president who was credibly accused of rape and committed perjury for his own convenience. His wife, who led the effort to malign and dismiss his accusers, is the leading candidate for the next presidential election.

I find it hard to disdain Clarence Thomas for juvenile offenses (whatever his age) that are trivial by comparison.

In my personal life, I refrain from dealing with people of low character. I would not invite people like the Clintons to my home. I would not want to report to either of them in a job.

And, still, we are expected to ignore all this when we vote.

damikesc said...

Forget Bill Clinton, Ted Kennedy, and Chris Dodd - they're not Clarence Thomas - if you grant every charge that was made against Clarence Thomas, then what?

If those charges were true, there'd be more than just one woman making them. And they would have been made for the last 20 years as well.

The evidence actually was that Thomas had "walls covered with pictures of naked women" at home.

And this "evidence" is what? Again, these claims are not widespread by any means and there is a decided lack of photo evidence.

Anita's word doesn't mean a damned thing.

What percentage of the male population do you think are black Robert Crane's of the Right - seemingly-assimilated Republican black males whose sexual fetishes are displayed upon entering the house?

So, an accusation is made against a black man and you vehemently disagree --- UNLESS they're conservative. Then, yup, that black dude is totally guilty, huh? No proof needed.

Anita Hill was speaking to the man's character, which - last time I checked - is still how one behaves when they think no one's looking. By all accounts, he seemingly failed there.

In spite of the lack of evidence and behavior that belies her claims after the fact?

So, you really don't mind black men being victimized --- as long as they are the "right" ones.

Is there an issue involving a prominent black male where you actually know what the hell you're talking about? You're a borderline moron on Trayvon and a total moron on Thomas.

Yep, that's all I hear out here amongst blacks - hatred for accomplishment.

"Talking" and "Acting" white as synonyms for acting like adults didn't originate with whites. Just sayin'.

I find it funny seeing Crack call a man who actually dealt with racism seriously and fiercely an "Uncle Tom". He's dealt with stuff that'd have Crack committing suicide.

jr565 said...

It's funny that crack says Thomas has no flow. Not sure why a black guy would have to have flow. What has he done? For someone who started with practically nothing he rose pretty high. I'm not going to say he's inauthentic. People in general' but blacks in particular, should look to him as a success story to emulate.

Austin said...

The whole episode was so squalid and vulgar. It is also stunning, and quite depressing, to think that all these sordid details were revealed, discussed, and debated in the context of an advise and consent hearing for a Supreme Court nominee. Regarding Thomas' constitutionalism, all I seem to remember is an obfuscated and anfactuous discussion on the meaning of natural law. Thomas was a very unimpressive candidate, with minimalist qualifications to sit on the Court.

jr565 said...

Here's the difference between the dems and Clarence Thomas. With Clarence Thomas there was no sex. And barely any innuendo of sex even.
But look at the standard they applied when they were lynching the black guy versus when one of their own was under the spotlight. And there guy actually got the bj from the intern. Then went on national tv and lied about it while someone else was suing him for similar harassment.
If it weren't for their double standard lefties would have no standard at all.

rcocean said...

If you think Thomas was "unqualified" to sit on the SCOTUS, you should look up the "qualifications" of Hugo Black, Douglas, Fortas, Souter, and Brennan. Not to mention the "wise Latina" or Whizzer White.

jr565 said...

Austin wrote:
Thomas was a very unimpressive candidate, with minimalist qualifications to sit on the Court.

then the dems should have gone that way rather than turn his appointment into a pogrom on sexual peccadilloes. Instead we got the dems turning it into a farce.

damikesc said...

Austin, yet he's been one of the deepest thinkers on the Court. Odd.

Phil 3:14 said...


Blacks certainly find him a strange bird, and that's not just because he's a Republican. He's got no "flow" as we say in Jazz.

Shorter Crack: He's not really black.

(I'm glad white folk still have the privilege of being a strange bird.)

Ann Althouse said...

If the paintings were pornographic, these authors would have used different language. They wrote "nudes."

I would love to see the actual image. What was it, something like the painting Mr. Halloran had hanging over his bed in "The Shining"?

I suspect snobbery and class prejudice.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

The Crack Emcee said...
I say Virginia should've kept her mouth shut and felt lucky there's no God,...


Blacksplaining + War on Women = classic Crack. Something about Mrs. Thomas bother you, Crack? Something more than skin deep, maybe?

Jon Burack said...

Crack

As the Hall Monitor, I say what you need a citation for is the remark about "by all accounts" he seemingly failed the character test you set - of how you act when no one is looking. The only account we got on that, almost by definition, was Hill's. To me, it did not add up to a thing even if it were all true, which I had no way of deciding and neither did you or anyone else.

Maybe everyone else is a lot smarter than me, but I for one have a lot of trouble judging a man's character even when I know him well. You can still be surprised, as people are all the time. Hill provided absolutely no way for anyone not there to know the truth of anything she said. Which is why those who wanted to believer her did and those who did not want to, did not. None of the rest of us was in a position to judge at all.Yet we were relentlessly asked to by the media show that people like Totenberg set up for us all. I resented it, and still do.

chickenlittle said...

Austin said...
The whole episode was so squalid and vulgar.

I thought the whole cigar-in-the-vagina topped that stuff. I never even thought of doing that. I guess that's why Clinton was a success -- the power of imagination!

Austin said...

@jr565- I agree entirely.

@damikesc- Thomas is not now, nor has he ever been, a deep thinker.

@chicken little-agreed,the cigar-in-vagina stuff was perhaps even more vulgar than the pubic hair on the coke can.

The Crack Emcee said...

Michael K,

"Spin slavery "???

Plantations?

The good darkies - who get away - siding with the oppressors.

That's a spin, alright.

As real as Holocaust denial,...

The Crack Emcee said...

Michael K,

"I hear that comment too from African blacks and West Indian blacks. They feel so sorry for American blacks who can't get over the victim thing."

Oprah said we won't get better until you're dead.

In the meantime, it's so nice to hear of the oppressor, communing with those of other nations, on how the oppressed aren't handling it well. That's how successful nations are made. Not very logical, though:

Many conservative whites, here, make a point of telling me how awful it is in Africa - so awful blacks are "lucky" to have endured 400 years of white brutality - but now a REALLY SMART white man is saying I'm also supposed to be ashamed Africans, who live in the disgusting and depraved conditions conservatives described, feel sorry for me.

Their mutual despair must be profound.

But the Indian system - a wonder to behold! They just outlawed child slavery, you know. That's enough. I'll say no more.

Two fine representatives for why blacks in America shouldn't feel oppressed being outnumbered by the likes of Michael K. And the whole situation - sitting around discussing what's wrong with blacks - why, that probably comes so natural to some people we, with our "bad culture," probably missed it.

For the record, I have NOT - repeat: NOT - ever sat with a group of people from other nations and slandered the whites of my country.

My criticisms are for family.

But that Michael K:

He's got everybody's number,...

Titus said...

Thomas was an affirmative action hire, but because he was conservative, we applaud that.

Anita Hill was a little bit slutty and nutty though.

The Crack Emcee said...

To - damikesc and Jon Burack,

You're both claiming this was Anita's word against Thomas' when Ann posted this in her text:

"One woman, Kaye Savage, a civil servant who worked in the Reagan White House and who was friends with both Thomas and Hill, describes her shock when she walked into Thomas' apartment and found the walls covered with pictures of naked women."

That's no longer he-said/she-said, or will YOUR friends testify to being shocked by "walls covered with pictures of naked women" in a casual visit to your place?

Ann Althouse,

"I would love to see the actual image."

How did a "wall full" of nudes become a single image? You seem determined to diminish this, somehow.

"Maybe everyone else is a lot smarter than me, but I for one have a lot of trouble judging a man's character even when I know him well. You can still be surprised, as people are all the time. Hill provided absolutely no way for anyone not there to know the truth of anything she said."

Only if you accept Thomas' hearing was fair - and other witnesses to his behavior don't count. And if you deny Clarence Thomas has made troubling statements, of various kinds, that don't meet the facts - something I don't hear anyone accusing Anita Hill of very often.

And, lastly, only if you choose to ignore the fact she was ASKED to do what she did.

Blinded by the light,….

chickenlittle said...

For the record, I have NOT - repeat: NOT - ever sat with a group of people from other nations and slandered the whites of my country.

Yet you do that here, virtually, everyday.

kcom said...

"And now, here we are, 20 years later, and Abramson has risen beyond her co-authored book about the empowered black man and the gender victim, up through the heights of the NYT and summarily ousted, herself possibly a gender victim, and — look! — they replaced her with a black man."

And, no doubt, soon there will be a book not just by Jill Abramson (laying out her case for what happened and what it means), but one about her in which she will get the Clarence Thomas treatment, with oodles of details on every spat and backstabbing moment during her tenure at the Times, all delivered to the future author by her anonymous former co-workers. I wonder if that one will get a rave from Nina Totenberg.

kcom said...

Sorry, Crack, you're wrong. Thomas can leave any time he wants, and no one's going to threaten him or try to cut off half his foot. It's the Demo side that punishes you if you don't follow their orders. You either fit in one of their slots and have the opinions you're allowed to have, or holy hell will rain down on you. It's not a whole lot different than East Germany. In the good ol' GDR you could be happy or unhappy, but you could never leave.

kcom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jr565 said...

"Two fine representatives for why blacks in America shouldn't feel oppressed being outnumbered by the likes of Michael K. And the whole situation - sitting around discussing what's wrong with blacks - why, that probably comes so natural to some people we, with our "bad culture," probably missed it. "


So lets not discuss the statistics Crack. Everything is great and hunky dory. Lets just wait for bill cosby to come out of his retirement and have one of his pep talks before any can comment on statistics in relation to the black community.
While we're waiting, we can be assured to get nothing but harangue after harangue from you about how white people are failing blacks. Why are you able to criticize but others aren't?

jr565 said...

Crack Emcee wrote:
It is Tom who doesn't want to leave as the other 97% have. It is he who didn't see any killings to be concerned about, or hear any bad talk that affected him, or suffer discrimination from not voting or nothing financial - just like Duck Dynasty and Cliven Bunday and Donald Sterling and all the rest of The Illustrious I'm-Not-A-Racist Crew say. He's one of the good ones.

its kind of hard to say he's on the plantation when he's one of the nine most powerful judges in the country. That's nothing but class envy on your part.
If it means that he had to play the game, well then, join the club.
You want to live the life of the outsider you're always going to be the one looking in the window at the people eating the food. But that's, largely, your choice.

Here's a secret crack. There is no more plantation, except the one in your mind or the one set up by govt. You live on govt handouts, that's your slavemaster feeding you scraps and setting the limits for your success.
The ones who make it are the ones who get out of that trap and succeed on their own merits. Just like everyone else.

jr565 said...

Crack Emcee wrote:
The good darkies - who get away - siding with the oppressors.

its like arguing with a guy who still listens to 8 track tapes. In this day and age, who is oppressing you? Segregation is over. You wanted integration, you got it. It doesn't guarantee you happiness any more than being raised a man guarantees you happiness. You have to earn your way, like everyone else. Unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth.

hombre said...

Crack: "Yep, that's all I hear out here amongst blacks - hatred for accomplishment."

It's called "the tall poppy syndrome."

It's why turds like Al Sharpton become the NAACP Man of The Year while Ben Carson, Thomas, Condaleezza and others like them are not acknowledged.

It's also the essence of Obama's politics.

Gene said...

I remember what an older black woman said about Anita Hill--"Where is her man?"

Achilles said...

This whole thread is awful. Progressives in both parties have been screwing black people since this country started. In order to maintain control they need to keep the country balkanized and citizens bickering amongst themselves. Affirmative action, signed by a republican progressive, is specifically designed to create distrust, anger, and envy between the beneficieries(black people, hispanics) and the losers(whites and asians).

Now we have Michael and Crack going at each other when the actual policy differences and desired outcomes between them are probably fairly small. The vast majority of people regardless of race just want everyone to have a fair shot in life. But the progressive elite in the country need segregated schools, poor education, and general distrust between citizens in order to remain in power.

Darrell said...

With Bork, it worked.
With Thomas, it didn't.
Mystery solved.

mdgiles said...

I don't think it's a question at all. Anita Hill was speaking to the man's character, which - last time I checked - is still how one behaves when they think no one's looking. By all accounts, he seemingly failed there. Even his wife, Virginia's, later "olive branch" to Anita Hill didn't deny Hill's claims. She was asked and said "Yes, the man was a creep."

I don't really believe you're black, or you'd be aware of the past use, and wary of sexual misconduct charges of some kind being used against black males. Well at least your Dempcraptic masters did act as they used to - IOW hang him from a tree in the middle of town.

Michael said...

"So what are our one or two names?"

Kanye and Solange

Michael said...

"So what are our one or two names?"

Jay-Z and Solange


(the jokes are better when you can remember which hiphop celeb you could care less about is which)

Anonymous said...

"Funny, I've heard about that too. The only accomplishments allowed are sports, entertainment, and Democrat politics."

Neil deGrass Tyson would beg to differ,...


LOL. You honestly think Tyson is widely known for his scholarship, as opposed to his celebrity as a television entertainer?

Do you honestly think a man on the street poll asking people to name a black physicist/cosmologist other than Tyson would generate many responses?

paul a'barge said...

Baquet amiable?

Ritchie The Riveter said...

Yep, that's all I hear out here amongst blacks - hatred for accomplishment.

Tell that to the serious student who is harassed by his peers for "acting white", while said peers worship the idols of pop culture and its dysfunctional derivatives.

And regarding being kept on the plantation ... you might want to talk to my friend in college, who was called an "Oreo cookie" for hanging out with me and my friends.

No, it's the lack of a true value system that resulted in this behavior, which IS the fault of whites - they made the damned thing.

From what I see in history ... supported by spending a good chunk of my childhood in a mixed-race neighborhood ... African-Americans exhibited a LOT of dignity -dignity derived from a sound value system that was embedded into the culture.

That is, until Progressives in the 1960's led many (of ALL colors) to believe that such values were a sucker's bet, and that a combination of "anything goes" morality, pop-culture popularity, and socio-economic Band-Aids (financed by an unsustainable economic paradigm) to cover the resultant wounds was the way to go.

My father came out of Appalachia, and you see some the same results among the melanin-challenged there to this day ... even their own analogue to "acting white": parents that fight to get and keep their kids classified as "disabled" so that the SSI checks keep flowing.

This isn't a racial problem ... it is an arrogance problem; the condescending arrogance of those who "know better" convincing enough of us to embrace their value system as though these Best and Brightest are omniscient.

American law, morality, etc., has no credibility. Slavery supported by the Bible. Mixing good and evil like America has offered no guidance to anybody. Expecting a people the country keeps broke to fix centuries old problems, alone, is both cruel and - for a society - the height of madness.

It did have credibility ... it even led us to forsake slavery and institutionalized racism ... until Progressives corrupted it and turned it into "anything goes (unless we can get something out of you)".

The irony of all the above, Crack, is NO ONE has the power to keep us "broke" ... especially when you consider that Jim Crow was lynched 50 years ago.

We CHOOSE the values we embrace ... while others can lead us to the edge of the cliff, WE choose to jump over it, then complain about the sudden stop at the bottom.

And even then, we nearly always can learn from the experience and climb back up to the top, by exercising our own initiative and the help of neighbors who know us as more than a statistical average ... though such help is harder to come by when those around you have been led to believe that the only good help comes from "experts" and "leaders", and outsource their initiative to help you to such as these.

In fact, your insistence that the "country" has to fix this before people can rise above the dysfunction smacks of a morality-jamming fundamentalism that seeks to impose ONE value system as the One and Only True Way via the coercive force of law.

The ONLY values that our government should insist upon, are those self-evident truths at the start of the Declaration of Independence.

Beyond that, establishing sound values and living them is OUR job, as individuals and neighbors, always with respect to those self-evident truths and the personal liberty they embody.

Anonymous said...

ThomasD said...
"Funny, I've heard about that too. The only accomplishments allowed are sports, entertainment, and Democrat politics."

Neil deGrass Tyson would beg to differ,...
------------------------------

He stands out like a white man in an NBA lineup.

Unknown said...

---
I would love to see the actual image. What was it, something like the painting Mr. Halloran had hanging over his bed in "The Shining"?---

Or were they line drawings like what Jack produced in the Titanic?

Unknown said...

David Brock wrote a much better book, "The Real Anita Hill", showing a high likelihood that Anita Hill was lying and Clarence Thomas was telling the truth. Sadly, the book received less publicity than it warranted, pretty clearly because the media tilt strongly left. Not long thereafter, Brock switched his politics and denounced his own book. However, the evidence compiled in Brock's book remains strong.

David in Cal

AReasonableMan said...

Unknown said...
Not long thereafter, Brock switched his politics and denounced his own book. However, the evidence compiled in Brock's book remains strong.


This is what's known as epistemic closure. The author admits he was lying but still the evidence remains 'strong'.

kcom said...

You're my hero today, Ritchie the Riveter:

while others can lead us to the edge of the cliff, WE choose to jump over it,
...
though such help is harder to come by when those around you have been led to believe that the only good help comes from "experts" and "leaders"


I noticed your correct spelling and usage of the words "lead" and "led", all within a paragraph or two of each other. It's a Festivus miracle. I didn't think such a creature existed on the internet. Thank you for giving me hope for (English-speaking) humanity.

Christopher said...

About that Brock book, which sits on my bookcase even now.

When Mayer and Abramson came out with their book, they went on the usual tour including public affairs shows. Brock was in an almost singular position to refute Mayer and Abramson, and they responded to that in the usual leftist manner: They refused to face him (see Gore, Al re climate debates). When Mayer and Abramson were getting booked for one of those in-depth appearances on C-Span, Brian Lamb & Co. said fine, we'd love to have you, but you have to appear with Brock. Mayer and Abramson refused, and so C-Span refused to interview them. That was the day I learned Mayer and Abramson were intellectual cowards. I've noted Abramson's rise through the ranks over the years (lost track of Mayer) and have been unimpressed every step of the way.

hombre said...

Arm: "This is what's known as epistemic closure. The author admits he was lying but still the evidence remains 'strong'."

Interesting about Brock. The relevant questions are: 1. Has he always been a liar and continues lying today? 2. Was he formerly truthful, but became a liar when he discovered lying for the left pays better than not lying for the right?

Given his association with Media Matters, number two appears to be the better choice.

The Crack Emcee said...

kcom,

"Sorry, Crack, you're wrong. Thomas can leave any time he wants, and no one's going to threaten him or try to cut off half his foot. It's the Demo side that punishes you if you don't follow their orders."

That's a lie. I'll have to agree it's common for both parties to behave that way.

"You either fit in one of their slots and have the opinions you're allowed to have, or holy hell will rain down on you."

Again, not true - that's a much better description of the Right than the Left. Didn't accept Ted Cruz's version of Republican "principles" when he shut down the government? You were a heretic. The same if you don't accept the ahistorical racial framework conservatives are working from.

"It's not a whole lot different than East Germany."

Like when conservatives used to follow me around the web, trying to sully my name? Yeah, just like East Germany.

"In the good ol' GDR you could be happy or unhappy, but you could never leave."

But, what we've discovered about the Right AND Left is, blacks can leave AND be happy!

So we'll keep going with whoever has their heads on right at given time,...

William said...

It's a matter of record that MLK had a lively interest in the ladies. I don't, however, think that any investigative reporter is going to be looking up his ex girlfriends to see if they'd be willing to expose how MLK had treated them caddishly......Clarence Thomas was singled out for unfair treatment, not because he was black but because he was a black Republican.......Re Sacco & Vanzetti: There were mass protests against the executions of these men in both Europe and America. There was never anywhere a single protest against the mass executions and politically motivated famines that were enforced in the Soviet Union at the time of the Sacco Vanzetti case.

LesLein987 said...

The day Strange Justice came out Kaye Savage did an interview with ABC News. Savage said that she saw "a" centerfold on the wall. John Leo and the Washington Times mentioned this. Either we have an unreliable witness or unreliable authors. My guess is that the authors put up the extra playmates.

kcom said...

"But, what we've discovered about the Right AND Left is, blacks can leave AND be happy!

So we'll keep going with whoever has their heads on right at given time,..."

I wish that were true. It would be better for everyone if that was the case.

"That's a lie. I'll have to agree it's common for both parties to behave that way."

My point is not that you won't catch guff from your former side if you leave, which of course will always happen under those circumstances. My point is that the right/Republicans don't assume they have a divine right to the loyalty of all white people. And no divine right to tell them what they have to believe. The Democrats/left, on the other hand, seem to act like they own the votes and the minds of black people and can dictate to them the correct beliefs for their group. When one leaves (or is on the other side) it's not just "we disagree with you" or "what were you thinking" or even, "You're a dick." It's more like, "How dare you decide for yourself what's important to you, what your values are. How dare you make up your own mind." Implicitly, they're saying you're not a free person, you're constrained by your skin color. That's a burden the Republican/right doesn't place on anyone - white or black. I honestly, in my heart of hearts, think it's vile.

Tell me the moral equivalent of the phrase Uncle Tom for someone switching from right to left. And name one prominent political commentator who has used it as freely as lots of Democrats (including Congressmen) use the phrase Uncle Tom (or house nigger). Neo-Nazi groups don't count as prominent political commentators. There will never be equality if people are forced into political positions due to their skin color because that standard will never apply to whites. It's a "disparate impact" that the country can do without. It's a vile restraint on someone born into a free country with a First Amendment.

LesLein987 said...

According to Strange Justice, Hill told a Senate staffer about a corroborating witness named Linda Lambert Jackson. Hill dropped Jackson from her story when she went public. Jackson testified as a pro-Thomas witness. Mayer and Abramson never noticed that they had proof that Hill made up at least part of her story.

LesLein987 said...

On the day Strange Justice was published Kaye Savage told ABC News that she saw "a" centerfold in Thomas's home. We have either an unreliable witness or unreliable authors. My bet is that the authors hung up the extra centerfolds.

CJ said...

Anybody still reading these comments? Okay,my $.02 worth: Clarence Thomas never had any of these bimbo eruptions before the Supreme Court nomination, and he hasn't had any since. That tells us a lot, and contrasts signally with Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton, et cetera.

Chef Mojo said...

Crack. Mr. Authenticity.

What a presumptuous asshole.

Unknown said...

Althouse ---"You need a citation for that. I'm not seeing that quote."

Crack ---SOMEBODY CALL THE HALL MONITOR!!!! ROTFLMAO!!!

Unknown --- Crack wants to lie and cling to his lie without being called.

Crack, if you have to make your point with lies, maybe what you believe is false.