September 14, 2018

How can I trust a column with "'The personal is political,' Gloria Steinem famously said"?

That's not a Gloria Steinem quote! It's easy to look up. Wikipedia has an article, "The personal is political":
The phrase was popularized by the publication of a 1969 essay by feminist Carol Hanisch under the title "The Personal is Political" in 1970, but she disavows authorship of the phrase. According to Kerry Burch, Shulamith Firestone, Robin Morgan, and other feminists given credit for originating the phrase have also declined authorship. "Instead," Burch writes, "they cite millions of women in public and private conversations as the phrase's collective authors." Gloria Steinem has likened claiming authorship of the phrase to claiming authorship of "World War II."
That is, it looks as though Gloria Steinem is at most "famous" for saying that no one person can claim to have said it first.

The column with the bad fact-checking is by Margaret Sullivan in WaPo: "Abusive media moguls harmed more than just individual women. They shaped a misogynistic culture." Excerpt:
The powerful and now-departed men of CBS — Moonves, Fager and star interviewer Charlie Rose — helped shape how our society sees women. The network, after all, is the most-watched in the nation. “60 Minutes” for 50 years has been the very definition of quality broadcast journalism: the gold standard.

It’s impossible to know how different America would be if power-happy and misogynistic men hadn’t been running the show in so many influential media organizations — certainly not just CBS.
Yes, we can't know what might have been without these apparently awful people running CBS, but what's the evidence that the shows the shows pumped out on CBS were importantly misogynistic enough to have made our culture the "misogynistic culture" it is? I can't find anything in Sullivan's column.

31 comments:

David Begley said...

Yeah, we had to suffer through Leslie Stahl and her outfits for 30 years.

rehajm said...

More bad dact checking from MSM in the last day:

-NBC reports never had simultaneous major stoms in Atlantic and Pacifc before today. Not True! Fairly common. Al Gore repeats lie anyways..

-Nikki Haley paid $50k for curtains for new ambassador abode NYT reports with accompanying disdain quotes and accompanying perp pic. Oops! It was the Obama adminsitration what ordered.

Matthew Sablan said...

Layers of fact checkers.

PM said...

The Era of Everything is Significant

rcocean said...

CBS made their $Billions$ as a Media Monopoly using the PUBLIC airwaves.

Did anyone elect Charlie Rose or Moonves to anything? My ballot must have got lost.

Off with their heads.

Francisco D said...

"It’s impossible to know how different America would be if power-happy and misogynistic men hadn’t been running the show in so many influential media organizations ."

Yes. It is impossible to know.

What is the purpose of that empty statement?

buwaya said...

I can't imagine that anyone at CBS created the "misogynistic culture" of the quite recent past, or of the rest of the world. Hispanic popular culture say, or Chinese, or Japanese, or for that matter of the uplands of New Guinea.

The US intelligentsia is ridiculously parochial.

tim in vermont said...

Glow Stick is the hot one, so her hotness is brought into service of the text. Today, hotness is credibility. It’s like taking pictures of photogenic people. I knew a kid in college who was into photography but I never saw a decent picture from him until he ran into Jane Fonda at the airport and took her picture, suddenly he was capable of great photography.

tim in vermont said...

if power-happy and misogynistic men hadn’t been running the show

It’s pretty funny how vocal they all were about women’s rights and women’s equality. I guess they were all hoping for the Bill Clinton pass.

Wilbur said...

If you scratch a disagreeable and disputatious liberal, you inevitably uncover a strong urge towards "The personal is political". The insatiable urge to inject their political views has ruined a lot of things, and a lot of friendships.

Yeah, man. Righteous.

Michael K said...

"The US intelligentsia is ridiculously parochial."

Not to mention ignorant. Why do so many invaded populations back to the African exodus have mitochondrial DNA that is the native population and nuclear DNA that is the invader origin?

25% of males in central Asia have Genghis Kahn's Y chromosome.

Irish males have more than 25% Y chromosome from one warrior king.

Several factors suggest that further Irish Y-chromosome analysis is warranted. First, its position at the European extreme in the cline of R1b3 frequency points to an unusual population history, perhaps with genetic signatures of past demographic events that are relatively undisturbed by migration. Second, as in many European societies, Y chromosomes and Irish surnames share (in the main) patrilineal transmission. These names are among the oldest cultural lineage markers in the world and emerged from an earlier tribal nomenclature that also emphasized patrilineal relationships. Hence, Y-chromosome comparisons between surnames may be informative with respect to older genealogical links that stretch back into Irish prehistory and mythology. Finally, the indigenous medieval Irish or “Gaelic” social order differed from that of much of Europe, survived until the 16th century, and was, arguably, highly patriarchal and pastoralist. These sociocultural features may have left a distinctive biological legacy.

If that is not "Patriarchal" I don't know what is.

Maybe we should have waited another thousand years before the 19th Amendment.

bagoh20 said...

"I can't find anything in Sullivan's column."

That's not important anymore. Claim it, and then all sides fight as if it's true. Even if proven untrue by someone, that is just a side story. The fight is what has legs, even if they are short.

William said...

Gloria comes into a lot of unfair criticism for being a man hater. No such thing. She signed up to be Norman Mailer's press secretary when he ran for Mayor of NYC. This was after Mailer had tried to stab his wife. Not only that, she gave him what she claimed was a pity fuck during the course of the campaign. Do these sound like the actions of a man hater to you.......All women should look to Gloria for help and advice on how to navigate the shoals of sexism and career advancement. She certainly knew how to do it,

Rory said...

As I type this, CBS Sunday Morning is congratulating itself for promoting the lifestyle of these sorts of people for 40 years. When will that shoe drop?

ConquerorofAllFoesCheese said...

What do facts matter when you have an opponent to beat up on?

gilbar said...

democracy dies in darkness!

Bill Peschel said...

Those who are abused and remain silent also serve the CBS culture. Sometimes, they're rewarded with a revival of their old shows. Right Linda Bloodworth-Thomason?

Spaceman said...

Well maybe Ailes and O'Reilly were so bad after all? I wonder if a movie will be made about Moonves (like for Ailes). Hmm, don't so.

Narayanan Subramanian said...

Try the contrary ... Politics is not personal - anyone buying that?

No skin in the game? Losers.

gg6 said...

I'm having the sense the only operative logic here might be 'Form Follows Function'. Do we actually have some rational basis for this idea that Female "moguls" would NOT also be "power-happy" and misandrous as well? Not that I'm aware of. In fact, it strikes me there are already quite a few like that in the 'News" every day.

gg6 said...

Michael K said: ..."the indigenous ... Irish or “Gaelic” social order ..... was, arguably, highly patriarchal.."
imho, Michael is def onto something here - it certainly explains the DropKick Murphy philosophy:... "We're the first ones to starve, we're the first ones to die ..."
:-)
https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/dropkickmurphys/workerssong.html

RNB said...

"If this country were run by vegetarian women rather than by flesh-eating men, this whole space disaster would have never happened."

Jay Elink said...

Wanna enrage a feminist?

Stand inside your house with one and ask what women invented the cooling/heating systems, the dishwasher, the clothes washer/drier, the natural gas system that heats the house and your stove, the iphone, the microwave, the running hot/cold water, the toilets and sewer systems, the PC, the LANS, and the Internet, etc..the power stations and the power grid that distribute their output into ther homes...

And..ask who built the house itself.

Note the slow burn.

Then go outside, and ask the same question: who invented those cars, the assembly lines that built them by the hundreds of millions, the technologies that have improved them vastly over the past hundred years.

The same cars the harpy bitches drive in to their anti-male bitch sessions.

Ditto the planes flying overhead, , the airports that they fly to/from, the runways and tarmacs they use to move about, the huge hangars that house the planes for maintenance, the radars and other systems that guide them...

What wymyn invented and built all that stuff?

And on and on.

Sure...they'll cite Hedy Lamar and the very occasional exception....but 999% of EVERYTHING ELSE women use and rely on in their lives comes from the brains, creativity and SWEAT of men.

Ask them to dispute this statement, and you'll get sullen bullshit, and how "if only" the "patriarchy" hadn't held them down, through all human history irrespective of time and place, things would be much, much better.

Wymyn who think like this tend be losers, in life and marriage and careers.

That's the patriarchy's fault too, doncha know..




Gahrie said...

Yes, we can't know what might have been without these apparently awful people running CBS, but what's the evidence that the shows the shows pumped out on CBS were importantly misogynistic enough to have made our culture the "misogynistic culture" it is? I can't find anything in Sullivan's column.

How about first actually providing some evidence that are culture is misogynistic?

wildswan said...

I think that Vincent Sheean is the real author of "the personal is political" idea. He wrote a book called Personal History: Youth and Revolution: the Story of One Person's Relationship to Living History (1935). Sheean just sort of roamed about looking for interesting events, covered the Rif War, fell in love with a beautiful Communist who tragically died. He was a revolutionary and then was not (as I remember it he got tired of the endless indignation). It is a very interesting read and I wonder why the book is forgotten. But anyhow it was very popular in its day - 1935 - and I've always thought that "the personal is political" was started by this book.

n.n said...

Sullivan infers a truth, then paints with broad, sweeping strokes. Embrace the diversity.

n.n said...

evidence that are culture is misogynistic?

Human rights, duck dynasties, women not on the front line... we didn't start the fire.

The Crack Emcee said...

"The powerful and now-departed men of CBS — Moonves, Fager and star interviewer Charlie Rose — helped shape how our society sees women."

Smart, independent, empowered - this is what women call themselves now - so,....

tim maguire said...

Minor editing suggestion: This entry would be improved by the removal of "it is" from the second to last sentence.

Otherwise, absolutely. People have been complaining about fake news for years. Trump is at most the most famous person to complain about it.

Fernandistein said...

"How can I trust a column with "'The personal is political,' Gloria Steinem famously said"?"

That's not a Gloria Steinem quote!


Did Steinem say it? I don't see a claim that she invented it.

Carol Hanisch, Kerry Burch, Shulamith Firestone, Robin Morgan,...

...are not famous, so if they said the magic phrase, they didn't "famously" say it.

Gloria Steinem has likened claiming authorship of the phrase to claiming authorship of "World War II."

I have a feeling that Steinem might have famously said the phrase, as the authorette claimed, perhaps while not taking credit for it.

"They shaped a misogynistic culture."

There's your silly bullshit.

Jay Elink said...

Carol Hanisch, Kerry Burch, Shulamith Firestone, Robin Morgan,...

...are not famous, so if they said the magic phrase, they didn't "famously" say it.

**************
Firestone was buddies with Valerie Solanas (author of the timeless feminist classic, "The Scum Manifesto", now a primary source in college English 101 courses), who tried to kill Andy Warhol.

Not famous now, and rightly forgotten, but back then they were in the feminist vanguard.

Both died early, most likely from "Stage Four Being Fucked Up from Birth".