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January 12, 2015

Comments

'Outrage' is putting it a little too strongly; disappointment maybe.

I suggest he might have sent Joe Biden - no one could have taken offense at that.

Meanwhile, a shot of the great statesmen 'leading' the march:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/paris-march-tv-wide-shots-reveal-a-different-perspective-on-world-leaders-at-largest-demonstration-in-frances-history-9972895.html

Fox News host Greta Van Susteren tweeted: "This is really embarrassing...

I guess that's just another #FoxNewsFacts.

professional complainers are doing their jobs.

You just have to understand, ugh. In this, as in everything, it's all about us.

Minor details, like the total disruption of the march by American Presidential security? Irrelevant! Minor details like, is anyone really going to decide from this that American has suddenly gone soft of terrorist? Riiiight! It's all about us.

Although, its incredible that David Cameron's security and Angela Merkel's security etc didn't seem to disrupt the march, I assume Biden's could be tolerated. Kerry wasn't there because he ha meetings in the Middle East? Really? I certainly understand either way, but perception does matter. And its not being "soft on terrorism". It's being there for a friend.

OTOH, If Biden goes the anti French faction would have had a field day

People have too much time on their hands if they can even think of something like this to complain about.

Many of those leaders will go back to their countries and get back to the business of censoring their own news media, and surviving Hebedo staffers can't wait to get back to the office and rip some of these mountebanks:

http://www.juancole.com/2015/01/parading-caricatures-hypocritical.html

I wonder how FOX would react if Obama had made the trip, only to be satirized viciously, along with America at large, for our drone policies abroad.

Meanwhile, how would the fascist religious right in Israel, kept at bay only by Netanyahu's willing belligerence, react if Charlie Hebedo opened a branch in Jerusalem and started going after some of the fire-breathers in the Knesset and the Cabinet.

What form would the censorship against Hebedo take?

Obama should have sent Dick Cheney to represent and then as the demonstrations winded down alerted Interpol to pick him up and send him on to The Hague for some official heckling.

I read somewhere yesterday (I'll try to remember to look for the link) that Charlie Hebedo does have limits on their satire: the editors spiked a column a few years ago that they deemed anti-Semitic, which is probably a good thing, despite my own preference for edgy humor, but still, do they have limits or do they not?

Whaddaya think FOX? Say Marine Le Pen gains power in the intermediate future, helped along by anti-Muslim fervor, translated into anti-immigrant fervor, but also cuts taxes, government spending, and healthcare drastically, and in the meantime begins to show its vicious, fascist anti-Semitic persona in public pronouncements toward French Jews and Israel.

And then censors Hebedo for going after a Le Pen government.

Who you gonna hate then, FOX, ya filth? America has no idea of the truly virulent fascist tendencies (ours like to dress the part, but little else, despite their inroads into the Republican Party) circling beneath the surface of European politics.

I read recently too that only @20% of French Muslims show much interest in religion conviction; the rest are pretty much secular. and the large majority are appalled by these murderous acts.

Note also the young Muslim who shielded the Jews who were in his shop from the murderers, probably saving their lives.

Although, its incredible that David Cameron's security and Angela Merkel's security etc didn't seem to disrupt the march

Not particularly.
The group of leaders gathered separately from the main march - as you can see in the photo I linked above.

The Jihadist wing of the Republican Party speaks in the sub-person of Ted Cruz:

The absense is symbolic of America's world stage and it is dangerous. The attack on Paris, just like previous assaults on Israel and other allies, is an attack on our shared values. And, we are stronger when we stand together, as French President François Hollande said, for “liberty, equality, and fraternity.”

His pomme frites de liberte must really be smothered in cheap ketchup for him to think we're going to them down at this late date.

Had Obama/Biden/Obama gone, the pig Cruz would have hogged the mic and asked archly: Why are we sending a Muslim sympathizer to Paris to represent American interests?"

FOX would have run photos of Obama's Muslim father underneath the footage of Obama canoodling with the other leaders.

We need a Hebedo/Pussy Riot satirical uprising in this country.

I'm pretty sure elements of the right wing would firebomb their offices.

Here's a (long and) pretty good article on the Hebdo affair from France (as opposed to the screeds in our own press explaining at second hand what it all means):

http://blogs.mediapart.fr/blog/olivier-tonneau/110115/charlie-hebdo-letter-my-british-friends

"... Firstly, a few words on Charlie Hebdo, which was often “analyzed” in the British press on the sole basis, apparently, of a few selected cartoons. It might be worth knowing that the main target of Charlie Hebdo was the Front National and the Le Pen family. Next came crooks of all sorts, including bosses and politicians (incidentally, one of the victims of the shooting was an economist who ran a weekly column on the disasters caused by austerity policies in Greece). Finally, Charlie Hebdo was an opponent of all forms of organized religions, in the old-school anarchist sense: Ni Dieu, ni maître! They ridiculed the pope, orthodox Jews and Muslims in equal measure and with the same biting tone. They took ferocious stances against the bombings of Gaza. Even if their sense of humour was apparently inacceptable to English miunds, please take my word for it: it fell well within the French tradition of satire – and after all was only intended for a French audience. It is only by reading or seeing it out of context that some cartoons appear as racist or islamophobic. Charlie Hebdo also continuously denounced the pledge of minorities and campaigned relentlessly for all illegal immigrants to be given permanent right of stay. I hope this helps you understand that if you belong to the radical left, you have lost precious friends and allies..."

(One of the striking things to me is the radical difference between French and British satire.)

"choke" them down

also "Hebdo".

Marty, nobody in the world, nobody, has the kind of overwhelming security that an American President gets. Which has been true for decades. The security that a head of government like Merkel or Cameron gets is about what the Vice President of the US gets, maybe less.

You can argue that this is seriously over-the-top. And you might well be right. But for the moment, that is how the world is.

Regarding the Birmingham thing, British Prime Minister David Cameron choked on his porridge at FOX's Steve Emerson

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/david-cameron-fox-steven-emerson-idiot

Emerson has made a pretty good living from his terrorism grift.... what a gig.

Interesting that mainstream Muslims in an France and elsewhere are choking on their porridge in disgust at the murderous actions of these insane terrorist ideologues and now conservatives of various stripes are choking on the same porridge at the rhetorical horsecrappola peddled by American grifters against the majority of Muslims, all good family-values people.

There's a minority radical conservative poison let loose around the world, manifesting in all cultures and countries, puke religion and puke economics, sadistic, capitalizing on Fear of the Other.

They hate each other too.

Don't find any solace in that.

Murdering the French satirists, Putin murdering Ukrainians, the murderous Bocco Haran, al Qaeda, ISIS, Republicans murdering the poor and other Americans with pre-existing conditions, and Latin American immigrant children, all delighting in the suffering they cause, tweeting their delight like low-level Reichsfuhrers to the Volk -- it's all one murderous movement the world-over, lovers of a mythological conservative past intent on restoration, standing athwart history (actually, reverse cowboy) and yelling "Stop!"

This thing they call Conservatism -- which goes by the wrong name.

Get a new title.

wj,(and Nigel I guess) which is why I suggested that the security excuse really didn't work for sending Biden.

Thank, Nigel, for your 5:46 p.m.

I am more or less meh in both directions.

Wishy-washy. That's me.

Well, Obama could have sent a PAST president.

Like Dubya. Why, just think of the advantages of that, regardless of the outcome.

So, where do we all stand on the question of a nominally free American press declining, by and large, to show the original Charlie Hebdo cartoons?

--TP

Both Messrs Netanyahu and Abbas were going to be there. Who would we not sit with at lunch?

Obama must have had a golf game scheduled.

So is the Capital caferteria once again serving French fries? Or has that horrid Muslim Kenyan forced them to stick with "freedom fires"? Just wondering.

"So, where do we all stand on the question of a nominally free American press declining, by and large, to show the original Charlie Hebdo cartoons."

Some journalist somewhere the other day pointed out that there is such a thing as "editing", which is not the same thing as "censorship".

Which before the Internet, and other cultural loosenings, was more or less true, and I haven't a problem with that point of view as journalistic practice, a long tradition.

But, you know, I didn't get rid of the Fairness Doctrine, did I now?

Given my proclivities for living on the rhetorical edge, I'm pretty sure if I had the demographic reach of certain alternative media in this country, I could go after certain conservative religious (not that there is anything wrong with that) gun nut pigs in such a way as to place myself and probably my family in danger of a conservative Fatwa, among the targets I'm dying to pick a fight with.

In this country, they started it with the demonization, at the highest levels.

I'd like to end it for once and all and then get back to civilization.

Poking a rattlesnake in the neck rarely works out, unless you have some anti-snake-poison serum on hand for satirists.

Galileo was a bit of a satirist.


If this President farts, his courtiers will patiently explain that he was perfuming the room.

Of course there's such a thing as "editing", and when you choose to not publish something, that's not censorship, unless you do it in response to a threat, of course. In which case it IS censorship, but you're not the censor, the person making the threat that terrified you is. So, yes, this WAS censorship, and our media are regularly censored in this fashion.

Just not by themselves. By anybody willing to get violent if the media publish something they really don't like. Which is a really foolish message to send, but at least it's a truthful message, which is something for our media.

This was not, of course, an oversight on Obama's part, or a "mistake". It was a sincere expression of his belief that Muslims killing people who offend them isn't a big deal.

If this President farts, his courtiers will patiently explain that he was perfuming the room.

And his detractors will claim that it's just more evidence of his arrogant disdain for the nostrils of the world.

Sometimes a fart is just a fart.

Sometimes it's not even a fart.

If this President farts, his courtiers will patiently explain that he was perfuming the room

Make that any rather than 'this', and I might agree with you.

It was a sincere expression of his belief that Muslims killing people who offend them isn't a big deal.

Now you're just trolling.

Leave out the "now" and you'd still be right, Nigel.

It's a shame Brett doesn't troll by drawing comics.

--TP

"Now you're just trolling."

No, if I'm not mistaken, the origin of Brett's last claim there was indeed his posterior.

A fart by any other name.

eau de Bellmore.

That's O.K., I sometimes go all Pepe Lepeu around here myself, just to impress the girls.

If this President farts, his courtiers will patiently explain that he was perfuming the room

speck, plank, eye.

This was not, of course, an oversight on Obama's part, or a "mistake". It was a sincere expression of his belief that Muslims killing people who offend them isn't a big deal.

And your basis for your belief here would be what? Perhaps you have a quote; something Obama has said along these lines? Or is it just that you so dislike/dispise him (for whatever reasons) that absolutely anything he does, or does not do, simply must be deliberate and from the worst possible motives you can imagine?

Shorter wj: "citation required"

More aromatics from that well-known social website, Pooter.

Natch, a Texas Congressman doing the pooting, from the State where even the Comanche were driven out by the flatulent invaders.

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2015/01/an-elected-official-ladies-and-gentlemen.html

An air biscuit, if you will. A heinie hiccup, a sphincter whistle, a bit of rectal reasoning from the usual suspects, stepping on the duck, steam-pressing those Calvins.

A fart that could end a marriage.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but a righteous get out and walk, Donald.

never mind cite, i'd settle for an ounce of reality

Say rather, "citation appreciated"

Obama also didn't make a stop at the Phoenix VA hospital, even though he was just down the road giving a speech on the housing recovery. This, too, is a scandal, or some number of people seem to think so, given what I've seen on fb.

I replied to a post critical of the non-visit with an op-ed discussing how disruptive it would have been for the president and his security detail to simply show up at the VA because he happened to be in town for an event, and that had he done so, he would have been criticized for orchestrating a photo-op at the expense of veterens receiving the care they needed that day.

A friend of a friend replied something along the lines of "He didn't show up at the VA. I know people who live there. He's a Muslim POS!" When I replied that the article didn't say he showed up and wrote, "Muslim, huh?" I received a reply of "YES!!! He's an ADMITTED Muslim!!! Fncking POS!!!" (A - He's not. B - What if he was? C - I thought he was supposed to be a SEEKRIT Muslim.)

This guy's name wasn't Brett Bellmore, but I'll bet he and Brett could hang out and plink a few cans in the backyard while discussing Obama's Muslim sympathies.

" It was a sincere expression of his belief that Muslims killing people who offend them isn't a big deal."

If you're interested, I could find a couple of links to people on the far, far, far left who think like that.

It's interesting how people on the right part of the political spectrum have absolutely no idea just how much distance there is to their left, and how much space there is between people to their left, and their far left, and their far, far left. (I guess I said far, far, far left above, but that might be one too many. Well, unless Brett's left is the center and the far left are the liberals and the far far left are the leftists and the far cubed lefties are the people who really didn't care that Muslim fundamentalist murderers killed cartoonists. Actually, I think Brett's left is the right, so if anything I need more "fars".)

It will be interesting in 50 years if the President is remembered as the first Muslim President. Perhaps Nikki Haley will be remembered as the second, the first female Muslim President. Oh, wait, she is Sikh, and Methodist. How can she be a Republican anyway?Nevermind.

DJ, there's some reason to argue that our supposedly linear political spectrum is actually a circle. When you get far enough to the far left, you are on the farthest far right. And vis versa. The number of areas of agreement between the two can be quite startling.

I think it's a tesseract.

it's all self-serving anarchy on the edges.

cleek, I think that's the (orthogonal) libertarian edge. The left and right "edges" are all about total enforcement on everyone of the one and only true and right view of how the world should work. In short, complete totalitarianism; the opposite of anarchy.

It's also, in both cases, completely about controlling others "for their own good."

hmmm. this is where i think we need the 2d representation (authority vs liberty and conservative vs liberal). because there are definitely anarchic views way out there.

Oh, wait, she is Sikh, and Methodist. How can she be a Republican anyway?Nevermind.

It's always been kinda interesting to me how some portions of Indian polytheism interact with Christian monotheism. Specifically those who take a "just one more God among many".

More on point, though, as someone who spent most of their adulthood surrounded by Indians (mostly Hindus, but a few Sikhs, Jains, Muslims, and Christians too) it is not even vaguely surprising to see a second-generation Indian to be Republican. India covers the spectrum politically (their current PM is a member of the reasonably-despicable BJP - an explicitly Hindu Nationalist party), and those that have the wherewithal to immigrate tend to be middle or upper class, so an awful lot of them are going to cleave Republican (setting aside some cultural reasons they would as well).

(I know you're being somewhat facetious, and I'm more or less being incredulous that the people you're being facetious about can exist - I mean, I totally know and agree they do, but it boggles my mind as to the shear amount of myopic blinkered ignorance it must take for them to exist...)

I agree that the outrage is overdone, and would be there regardless of what Obama did.

If he had gone to Paris during the crisis and single-handedly captured the terrorists his critics would have found something wrong.

But we still should have sent someone to the demonstration. If not Obama then maybe Biden or Kerry or Bill Clinton.

Nobody (apparently including the white House) is arguing that it wasn't a mistake.

The argument seems to be over whether it was a deliberate snub (for whatever obscure reason), or just the kind of screw up which happens occasionally in any organization.

To hear Fox News tell it, you might think that l'affaire Obama would be a big deal in the French press. The only relevant story I could find in Le Monde was a short piece titled (my translation) "White House Embarrassed to Have Missed the March" which was mostly a straightforward report on Josh Earnest's press briefing and mea culpa. No outrage that I could see.

The piece concludes with this paragraph:

La presse américaine était, il est vrai, plus à l’aise pour évoquer l’absence de M. Obama à Paris que pour aborder le sujet douloureux de la publication de ces dessins controversés à laquelle s’étaient notamment refusés CNN et le New York Times.

My French is very rusty, but here's my attempt at a translation:
The American press, to be sure, was more comfortable about evoking Mr. Obama's absence from Paris than about confronting the painful subject of the refusal to publish the controversial cartoons, notably by CNN and the New York Times.
Make of it what you will.

--TP

Obama's absence wasn't reported in Britain at all as a thing; I doubt if Cameron would have gone in person if it wasn't an election year, and if the UK Foreign Secretary had gone, which is the usual level of representation on such occasions, nobody would have had a clue who he was*. At least Holder has some recognition factor.

*Philip Hammond.

Rumor has it that the Emperor of Japan was at the demonstrations in Paris, but he mingled with the crowds and nobody recognized him.

Showing (what was arguably in this context) an appropriate disregard for propriety, French former president Sarkozy pushed his way to the front to join the (current) prime ministers and heads of state at the demo:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/nicolas-sarkozy-mocked-for-pushing-his-way-to-the-front-row-of-the-charlie-hebdo-rally-in-paris-9975326.html

Canada sent its Public Safely Minister to France.

Conservative Harper stayed put. Obviously loves him some cartoonist killing at the hands of Muslim jackasses, huh, Brett?

Will American conservatives call for the Keystone pipeline to be canceled completely to protest this oily Canadian indifference to jihadist terrorism?

How do we know Middle Eastern terrorists -- two at a time -- aren't going to luge through the pipeline, infected with Ebola and carrying NRA-approved military weaponry to kill all of us?

Close that border! Deport infant Canucks!

I was just thinking today about the Ebola-hyperventilating of just a couple short months ago, with its attendant Obama-blaming in certain circles (or tesseracts).

Now that it hasn't produced widespread illness and death in these United States, I'm waiting for all the Obama-blamers to make their apologies.

As of December 2014, there have been a total of four laboratory-confirmed cases of Ebola virus disease (commonly known as "Ebola") which were diagnosed in humans in the United States.[3] There have been a total of ten reported cases, including these four cases as well as six cases medically evacuated from other countries; the first was reported in September 2014.[4] Eight of the people contracted the disease outside the US and traveled into the country, either as regular airline passengers or as medical evacuees; of those eight, two died (as of December 2014, the two dead victims represent 0.000000625% of U.S. population).[5] A total of two people have contracted disease while in the United States. Both were nurses who treated an Ebola patient; both have recovered.

I guess it could start up again, so maybe that's why the apologies haven't yet been forthcoming.

the ebola FUD served its purpose: put a shadow on Obama. now that the election is over, there's no need to revisit it.

What if the entire world is a crowded theater in which the gratuitous yelling of "Fire" is unwise, if not illegal?

See, it gets complicated:

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2015/01/the-free-speech-consensus-challenge.html

One man's satire seems to be another man's hatred, but who can tell when all sensitivities toward the Other are branded as "politically correct", as they are in this country, which has its own fascist, nationalist pig filth (until we decide what constitutes yelling Fire in a crowded theater, I'll stick with pig filth) substrata, which you don't have to go very far to find .... say, the House of Representatives.

Especially in certain supposedly advanced societies wherein fascism and hatred of the Other lurks below the surface.

A French Jew yesterday said on NPR that while the presence of Muslim jihadists in France is definitely a threat, what he really worries about is the backlash from the ever-present fascist, nationalist right-wing, for whom anti-Muslim hatred is just an adjunct to the latter's long-standing and rabid anti-Semitism.

On most other topics, their policy prescriptions resemble the Republican Party's, with the poor constituting much of the Other, ripe for the f&cking.

He fears moves by a future French government, probably a very reactionary conservative one, to force his full assimilation into French society, thus compromising his local culture and faith.

It seems, according to polls in this country, that conservatives are more willing to go full bore in defense of insulting the Muslim faith while liberals are somewhat less so.

Yet, I'm fairly certain that, given the right satirical public venue, I could get myself shot dead by certain elements of the armed conservative faithful in this country (that C.S. Lewis and the Catholic Walker Percy are among my favorite writers --- both of whom, I suspect might think twice about the wisdom of Hebdo's satire, while of course condemning the murders -- probably wouldn't matter).

Pig vermin in all societies are the most politically correct swine of all.

FOX Tease: "Liberal OBWI satirist shot dead, but did he deserve it?"


There were two viruses stalking us -- the terrible Ebola, which as of 11:59.59 pm, November 5, 2014 was shown to be a phantom, trojan horse, the gift that keeps on giving, shrouding a much more murderous pathogen, the more deadly piggybacking virus, the ascendancy of the right-wing Republican plague, which will kill many more Americans than all of those who have died in the world from Ebola.

I have a vaccine, but no one will be able to handle it.

Too many side effects.

"So, where do we all stand on the question of a nominally free American press declining, by and large, to show the original Charlie Hebdo cartoons?

--TP"

The only way to defend the freedom of speech of someone who was murdered to silence them is to take their words and scream them to the heavens.

Anything else is... Maybe whatever else you might do has value, but its not defending the freedom of speech of those who were killed.

both of whom, I suspect might think twice about the wisdom of Hebdo's satire, while of course condemning the murders

Pedantic twitch: you really should say "Charlie's satire" here, because it sounds very weird when you say "Weekly's satire".

This incident is the first time I have ever heard the claim that everyone who defends free speech is obligated to repeat the speech, even if it is the sort of speech that a newspaper would never have normally printed. I don't agree. I've seen some of the cartoons--they aren't hard to find.

I read Nigel's link up thread and many others on both sides and whatever the alleged politics of the cartoonists, I thought the cartoons repugnant. One made fun of the fundamentalists who were murdered by the Egyptian security forces when Morsi was overthrown. Haha, really funny, very progressive. One blogger put it side by side with a parody showing the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists being shot through their newspaper rather than the Koran. Point taken and equally hilarious, no doubt.

One can defend freedom of speech without being required to repeat that speech. Otherwise,what's the point of that word "freedom"?

But defending freedom of speech while being scrupulously careful not to repeat what got the other guy killed, and urging others not to repeat it either, is a rather attenuated defense. Not so much "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it", as, "I disapprove of what you say, but, really, let's all be prudent and not provoke them to kill us, too."

Brett pretty much nails it. If the material was not otherwise easy to find, there may be some reason to republish, or at least give directions for someone to find it. But in a case like this, it isn't really necessary.

?? It sounds as if you think DJ, rather than Brett, "nailed it."

But defending freedom of speech while being scrupulously careful not to repeat what got the other guy killed, and urging others not to repeat it either, is a rather attenuated defense.

This is why the ACLU newsletter is so given to posting reveries by KKK Grand Wizards, I suppose.

An interesting take on the Free Speech angle

the blindness of moral clarity

Criminey...a twofer.

The "interesting take on the free speech angle" is illustrated with a Charlie Hebdo cover that seems quite revolting at first glance. The author may be misinterpreting it.

http://www.vox.com/2015/1/12/7518349/charlie-hebdo-racist/in/7271890

--TP

an interesting take on the free speech angle
Seems to me to suffer from the blindness of moral clarity in the opposite direction.

This is, perhaps, a more nuanced (and informed) take on the free speech angle:
http://blog.frieze.com/what-we-talk-about-when-we-talk-about-charlie/#When:21:44:06Z

"This is why the ACLU newsletter is so given to posting reveries by KKK Grand Wizards, I suppose."

Yes, exactly: Because KKK Grand Wizard reveries are routinely censored by murderous rampages! Everybody knows that, so you just left it unmentioned.

It's a very attenuated defense of freedom of speech, but it isn't as though there weren't people who think freedom of speech should be attenuated. That the problem with the Charlie Hebdo attack, was that the Muslims shouldn't have had to do it, because the French government should have already shut them down itself.

Send in the Clowns!
It's a very attenuated defense of freedom of speech, but it isn't as though there weren't people who think freedom of speech should be attenuated.

When you write a sentence that tortured, it's obvious you are in over your head. You've got those unnamed people (that's another Bellmore tell) who just want to attenuate speech ("attenuate speech" Nice phrase. What the hell does it mean?)

And of course, the folks you are standing up for are just the Plain People of the Internet, the people who worship at the the church of the Blessed Freedom of Speech? Who don't think anything should be censored? How exactly does that work?

Don't bother, they're here...

This is, perhaps, a more nuanced (and informed) take on the free speech angle

Yes. A good essay. Thanks, Nigel.

Not so much "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it", as, "I disapprove of what you say, but, really, let's all be prudent and not provoke them to kill us, too."

Which is TOTALLY DIFFERENT from open-carry advocates conspicuously hanging around groups that oppose gun violence, amirite?

I disapprove of what you say, but, really, let's all be prudent and not provoke them to kill us, too.

Freedom of speech is certainly one aspect of the issue, but I'm not sure it's the only one. Specifically, I'm not sure that what is needed right now is for Charlie Hebdo cartoons to be printed by every available media outlet.

There are lots of reasons an organization might decide to not reprint inflammatory material. Fear of violence is one, but not the only one. And, fear of violence is not necessarily a bad reason for doing, or not doing, something. Especially if your action might create consequences for people other than yourself.

Just ask the senior management at Starbucks.

In any case, I don't see the 1st Amendment under threat by print media etc. deciding to not reproduce Charlie Hebdo cartoons at this particular moment in time. It's not like they aren't readily available for view by anyone, anywhere, with access to the internet.

the French government should have already shut them down itself.

IMO the French government shouldn't shut down Charlie Hebdo. Nor do they seem in any hurry to do so.

That said, 1st Amendment applies to the US. France is another country, they get to make their own rules.

"amirite"

I would like to point out, before it happens, that if Brett now starts discussing 2nd amendment rights and gun control, you can't complain that he turns every thread into that discussion. Hopefully he wont take the bait.

"Hopefully he wont take the bait."

AAAGGGHHH! What undying horror have I unleashed? Sorry sorry SOrry SoRRY SORRY SORRY!

From Nigel's link (quoted there from elsewhere):

‘What is really racist is the idea that only nice white liberals want to challenge religion or demolish its pretensions or can handle satire and ridicule. Those who claim that it is ‘racist’ or ‘islamophobic’ to mock the Prophet Mohammad, appear to imagine, with the racists, that all Muslims are reactionaries. It is here that leftwing ‘anti-racism’ joins hands with rightwing anti-Muslim bigotry.’

I felt like a cartoon character with a big lightbulb over my head when I read that.

Relax, I also care about the 1st amendment.

"In any case, I don't see the 1st Amendment under threat by print media etc. deciding to not reproduce Charlie Hebdo cartoons at this particular moment in time."

Of course the 1st Amendment isn't under threat by the print media chickening out on this. First, because Muslims firebombing newspaper offices isn't Congress passing a law, (Which is what the 1st amendment has to do with.) second, because the threat is from the Islamic terrorists, not the newspapers.

But, let's not pretend this scrupulous regard about whether publishing such images would offend Muslims derives from a concern for their tender feelings. No, it derives from a concern that they'll go berserk and attack anybody who publishes them.

No, it derives from a concern that they'll go berserk and attack anybody who publishes them.

Specifically, it derives from a concern that people who subscribe to a fairly narrow brand of militant political fundamentalist Islam might do so.

Nobody's worried about, for instance, the folks that work on my car, or the folks that own the White Hen near me, or the folks that own the place where I buy falafel. Or, at least, I'm not, and you shouldn't be either.

Crazy violent militants come in all kinds of packages, there's nothing remarkable about people choosing to not provoke them in one context or another.

newspapers and magazines in the US refuse to run all kinds of inflammatory material, every day. and it's not only because they worry that they will incite someone to violence, but also that they'll lose readership, or lose advertisers, or attract misguided criticism, or stir up the hordes of people who need to be victims.

just because our concern du jure looks like it could apply to what a business does doesn't mean that's what's actually happening.

I keep flashing on childhood taunts, when a kid might be persuaded to do something s/he had no desire to do by someone else saying "I dare you!" or "If you were [whatever] you wouldn't chicken out!" etc.

If a newspaper decided not to publish something because they thought it was too raunchy or offensive or racist or simply unfunny, I don't see that they have any moral obligation to do so just because someone else has suffered for doing so. One can (and should) deplore and condemn the brutal ignorant violence that occurred in Paris without having to honor the victims by imitating all their actions. Or else whenever there's a case of gay-bashing all of us - straight, gay, and Brett - would have to "come out" as homosexual in solidarity, amirite?

Johnny ate a worm and got sick, so you have to eat a worm or you hate Johnny.

I don't think so.

(OTOH, if you were borderline about publishing something in the first place, and now the image is "newsworthy" and you decide to go ahead - why not?)

To my way of thinking (if you can call it that), saying "this insults Muslims" is not what you say if you want the provocation to stop. You say "this is not funny".

Of course, fanatics prefer to be "offended", and to wear their victimhood as a badge that provides self-justification for their actions.

One interesting example, again from Nigel's link, of a Charlie Hebdo cartoon that was supposedly racist, sexist, anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim was the one described as follows:

The case seems clear: an outrageously racist and sexist depiction of girls abducted by Boko Haram and made sex slaves presented, in racial stereotyping, as grotesquely screaming pregnant women of colour, with a future as ‘welfare queens’ in France.

So, what was going on?

...mixing two unrelated events that made the news in France last year – the Nigerian school girls kidnapped by Boko Haram; the French government announcing welfare benefit cuts – is a double snipe, in classic Hebdo style, at both Boko Haram and those who hold grotesque fantasies and stereotypes about ‘welfare queens’, i.e. the French Far Right and its followers.

(...)

(think of the Steve Colbert Report done by Southpark, but ten times amplified by France’s tradition of mean, challenging joking, made to grin and bear it, going back to the 17th century )

(...)

...a more nuanced understanding of the often purposefully un-nuanced and crude jokes Charlie Hebdo were making, often risking indeed to perpetuate what they seemingly intended to criticize – the outrageous racism of Marine Le Pen and her followers – is in evidence.

It's easy enough to see how some people might not get it, but it doesn't change the fact that they're not getting it. Others, still, who might actually get it - acting in bad faith - will capitalize on others not getting it.

another angle:

Writers at Vox have indeed been bombarded with threats for our Charlie Hebdo coverage. But not one of those threats has come from a Muslim or in response to publishing anti-Islam cartoons. Revealingly, they have rather all come from non-Muslims furious at our articles criticizing Islamophobia.

"But, let's not pretend this scrupulous regard about whether publishing such images would offend Muslims derives from a concern for their tender feelings. No, it derives from a concern that they'll go berserk and attack anybody who publishes them."

Why can't it be both?

It is not my practice to attend, say, a Sunday morning Baptist religious service in Texas and to wait for the big-haired white TV fraud commandeering the festivities to finish his fiery perorations (a toll-free number running as a banner at the bottom of the screen advertising his virtual offering plate, the better to fund his fleet of Caddies and African gold mines) and then stand in the third row of the audience with a bullhorn and and announce that the baby Jesus can kiss my f*cking ass, because number one, in my real life as opposed to my internet persona, I in fact attenuate my speech and behavior because I do try to take the possibly hurt feelings (this is so politically correct of me) of the more sincere parishioners the pastor is fleecing into consideration, but also because I have a strong suspicion those big, beefy guys in suits up on the stage who swoop in to catch the fakirs who think they have been healed of all physical afflictions by the pastor's dramatic hand on their foreheads as they fall backwards, are probably concealed carrying deadly weaponry, if not at least small truncheons, given the number of sh*theads in the Texas State House, and will form a phalanx of well-coiffed brutality to usher me into a side room or the lobby and at the very least kick my ass that the baby Jesus was so recently requested to kiss.

This despite the fact that I have nothing against the baby Jesus (or the Prophet Mohammed, or Buddha, or Vishnu; on the other hand Shiva, Kali, the Yahveh of the Old Testament, I mean really, slaughter your son, Abraham? and a roster of others could use some attentuation) or his decent followers, but rather, like John Lennon, find his mercenary acolytes to be thick and ordinary, not to mention opportunistic and probably murderous as they place their lying lips against his hem (ie Robertson and his hurricanes, the black, American Muslim murderers of Malcolm X, not that J. Edgar Hoover wouldn't have gotten around to killing him anyway, etc).

I love this cartoon:

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/01/15/1357592/-Cartoon-Charlie-Hebdo-Love-is-stronger-than-hate

But with all of the man-on-man kissing (the spy versus spy window is great), I suspect Erick Erickson, the pig, may be cocking his weapon, or weaponizing his cock.

"straight, gay, and Brett"

I'm aware of those who self-identify as "bi", but where does the classification "Brett" fall on the sexual persuasion continuum?

Marketers everywhere may have identified a new fashion segment.

Sounds more like one of those jokes that starts with: "So, a straight guy, a gay guy, a chicken, and Brett walk into bar soaking wet carrying a two-man canoe. Brett says to the bartender ....."

Brett says to the bartender ...

"I'd order the chicken with 40 cloves of garlic, but that still puts us one seat short in the canoe, so just bring me a bourbon and water with a PBR on the side. Hold the water, the bourbon, and the PBR.

From the chicken-hawk who hunts reindeer from a helicopter:

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/sarah-palin-obama-chicken-paris

You know, this along with Brett's formulation above about newspapers "chickening" out with regard to republishing the Charlie Hebdo cartoons, may empower chickens, much maligned, not to mention grossly mistreated on the way to fricasseeing and other culinary provocations, to strike back with violence and assassination, perhaps using pigeons as rogue drones.

Brett should do an experiment. Put a billboard emblazoned with the most provocative Charlie Hebdo (thank you Nombrilisme vide for picking my nits up above), cartoons against Mohammed and the Popes, and Marine Le Pen, atop his house and visible to guys in caves and Paris cafes from the Google Earth satellites.

Add a provocative cartoon about the Texas gun rights desperado who stuck his foot into the Texas Congressman's doorway, just to mix things up a bit.

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/texas-guns-poncho-nevarez-panic-buttons

We'll await events.

Anybody home? Nope, just we chickens!

"But defending freedom of speech while being scrupulously careful not to repeat what got the other guy killed, and urging others not to repeat it either, is a rather attenuated defense."

I wouldn't object if the NYT did choose to print them because they are newsworthy. In fact, if nobody printed the cartoons I would urge that someone print them so I could see what the fuss was about. But that doesn't obligate any particular person or organization to print them, given the obvious fact that in the modern era anybody can find them online. The NYT has a policy, I gather, of not printing offensive material and they know that their readers can find the cartoons elsewhere, so no, I don't think they are betraying any principle here. (I'm in general not a big fan of the NYT and could say a few things about what they won't print, but that's a tangent.)

But I'm not going to join a parade that requires me to demand that everyone print cartoons that I think were morally repugnant. This is one of the bad side effects of terrorism--the extreme polarization it causes and is presumably designed to cause. All of a sudden I'm supposed to think that going out of my way to be as offensive as possible to Muslims (nonviolent ones and violent ones) is a necessary defense of free speech. Nope. The only thing I'm morally required to do is defend the legal rights of people to say and write and draw extremely offensive things.

Brett's recent criticism of FOX News keeping Ron Paul off the Republican debate roster comes into sharper focus:

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/ron-paul-institute-paris-attack-false-flag

His son, of course, will be front and center next time.

le Pen by any other non de plume.

I criticized it, because I don't believe it is the proper roll of a news agency to manipulate debate rules to keep one of the candidates out of the debate. But it did nicely demonstrate that Fox is part of the Republican establishment, for all that they are more tightly constrained to please the base than party leaders.

Anyway, why would a regular media outlet republish the cartoons? Context.

How can a reader decide whether Muslims are reasonable to be outraged, if they have no idea what they're being outraged over? It's like reporting that somebody was struck after swearing at somebody else, and not having any idea if it was "shucky darn" or something that would make a sailor blush.

Context. They're denying us context by doing this.

How can a reader decide whether Muslims are reasonable to be outraged, if they have no idea what they're being outraged over?

if a person can't figure out that mass murder because of some cartoons is outrageous, seeing the actual cartoons probably won't help.

They're denying us context by doing this.

they're not denying us anything. you can google for the cartoons if you want to see them. this isn't hard.

How can a reader decide whether Muslims are reasonable to be outraged, if they have no idea what they're being outraged over?

Which Muslims? I've heard this crazy story about Muslims being outraged over the murders. I guess we should see some bloody corpses in the paper to know how reasonably outraged Muslims are over the killings.

"They're denying us context by doing this"

Je suis le equite de doctrine.

I am the Fairness Doctrine, or rather Brett suddenly is.

On the other hand, we were supplied the context of Janet Jackson's wardrobe malfunction -- the Super Bowl -- but denied a glimpse of the offending body part.

Probably by the same offended people who clamor today to see Allah portrayed as wearing a butt plug and a tutu, or whatever the cartoons portrayed.

We never get the full picture.

Laurie Petrie never once pooped on the Dick Van Dyke Show. Well, she probably did but she had to go offset to find the context, the bathroom.

I guess I'm for trigger warnings as a cover page for Charlie Hebdo, much as I despise trigger warnings.

Call me a hypocrite, someone, anyone. But use a trigger warning.

Not the literal kind like the French murderers used or Ted Nugent and Jodi Ernst (hey, she's been given the rebuttal to the State of the Onion for her armed threats during her campaign) threaten to use.

For a heads up, just put your lips together and blow.

Rushdie's Satanic Verses provoked no less a Muslim than the Ayatollah Khomeini to issue a fatwa calling for Rushdie's murder and offering money for it. Banning the book in Iran, where Khomeini was the undisputed Head of State, evidently wasn't adequate vindication of The Prophet. .

The Jyllans Posten cartoons provoked masses of people (presumably self-avowed Muslims) in countries with authoritarian (and officially Muslim) governments to riot, with burning and killing and so forth. It is extremely doubtful that a Danish newspaper had wide circulation in those countries, but admittedly anyone who cared to be offended could probably find the cartoons on the web.

Skipping over the idiot "pastor" from Jerkwater FL who announced he would burn a Koran, and caused the then-unindicted General Petreaus to worry publicly about riots in Kabul; and skipping over the crap movie that provoked riots in several Muslim cities, including BenghaziBenghaziBenghazi; we come to the latest thing that at least two particular a$$holes (who claimed to be Muslim) considered so provocative that only mass murder could (so they declared) avenge The Prophet.

In all these cases, non-Muslim religious authorities like the Pope and the Archbishop of Canterbury deplored the violence but tsk-tsk-ed (or worse) at the poor judgement of the "provocateurs". A cynical atheist might view this as "religion" closing ranks against those of little faith.

Anyway, this insult-repaid-with-injury business seems to be a recurring motif, as is the free-speech-but theme.

I don't know how I feel about the whole thing. The main complication, for me, is the fact that western powers (some nominally secular like the US and some officially Christian like England) have historically run rough-shod over majority-Muslim countries -- and also treated Muslim minorities within their own borders with popular, if not official, contempt. "Punching down", metaphorically, is gauche -- whether The Left or The Right does it.

I do know this: your religion can forbid you to eat ham, get a divorce, or insult The Prophet, and it's no skin off my nose. But if your religion also presumes to forbid me to eat ham, get a divorce, or insult your prophet -- well, we can't get along on that basis.

This spirit -- that your religion imposes strictures on me; that your "faith" deserves more deference that your politics or your taste in art -- is not unique to Islam by any means. And that's my real worry: if I defer to the touchiest Muslims in the world, do I have to defer to the touchiest Jews and the touchiest Christians next?


--TP

So now, in Texas, one is "permitted" by the sub-human Islamic terrorist Republican Party pig filth running that state's legislative travesty to install a "panic button" in your state house office to alert "whomever" when these c*cksucking anti-American Republican Libertarian vermin issue threats of violence to elected representatives, otherwise known as liberals, who along with immigrants, Obamacare enrollees, and the rest of the targets of mass murder by the genocidal Republican Party need to become heavily armed as soon as possible to defend themselves with just and final violence.

ttp://www.balloon-juice.com/2015/01/15/gunfondlers-big-fans-of-statistics-but-only-the-invented-ones/

That last Texan John Wilkes Booth f*ck in the face of the Rep issuing those threats? He's a dead motherf*cker. As dead as the Charlie Hebdo murderers.

What are stinking guns for, Brett, if not to shoot f*cks like that in the face in self defense and then hunt down their f8cking children.

George Zimmerman's people. Kill as many of them as possible as quickly as possible.

You f*cking like satire?

But I'm not going to join a parade that requires me to demand that everyone print cartoons that I think were morally repugnant. This is one of the bad side effects of terrorism--the extreme polarization it causes and is presumably designed to cause.

Worth repeating. I've seen this cast as a "heightening the contradictions" event enough that this is worth repeating a lot.

"But I'm not going to join a parade that requires me to demand that everyone print cartoons that I think were morally repugnant."

Morally repugnant my ass. I've got a Matt Groening collection that's probably a hundred times worse. The Danish cartoons were so mild the instigators in the Middle East added their own product to the mix when showing them, just so people wouldn't laugh it off.

The story here is just how absurdly thin skinned these terrorists are, just how microscopic the supposed provocation is. But who's going to get that, when virtually every media outlet has been terrified into not showing anybody the cartoons?

Seriously, it's like somebody gets beat up for saying "darn", and the media bleep him in all the reports so that people will imagine far worse. These Charlie Hebdo cartoons would be laughed off as practically PG if the target weren't Islam. Ditto for the Danish cartoons.

That's the real story, and not republishing conceals it, by encouraging people to imagine that the cartoons were hugely worse than they really were. It leads people to think, "Sure, they shouldn't kill the cartoonists, but they WERE provoked.", when the 'provocation' was laughably trivial.

You have some strange ideas of "practically PG". That, or 'tis you who's passing judgement without having seen all the cartoons. Seriously, I'm not exactly sure how you get from "naked male genitalia and buttocks, (transgender) female breasts" to "practically PG". You can call American media prudish for feeling that way, but I fail to see in any way, shape, or form how the full body of Charlie Hebdo's Islamic oeuvre could come anywhere near PG.

This article from Jacobin has some interesting details

https://www.jacobinmag.com/2015/01/community-standards/

The story here is just how absurdly thin skinned these terrorists are, just how microscopic the supposed provocation is. But who's going to get that, when virtually every media outlet has been terrified into not showing anybody the cartoons?

a more realistic question is "Who isn't going to get that?"

because there simply can't be many people who think cartoons could be provocative enough to justify the murder of the cartoonists. there just can't be.

you've apparently seen the cartoons. did you have to use some top-secret spy shit to track them down and view them? something nobody else has access to? no? then why so worried that other people can't find them too, if they want to see them?

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