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Tuesday, September 15, 2015




Jonah Gldberg had this to say about the rather revealing sentiments expressed by Melissa Harris-Perry in an MSNBC “Lean Forward” clip:
Before we get to all that, a word about the ad campaign itself. In one sense these ads are like the question, “You want extra?” from the masseuse at a shady Vietnamese massage parlor — proof that all pretense at propriety is exactly that, pretense. This is supposed to be a news network. Moreover, it is supposed to be a news network that constantly boasts of its professional and philosophical superiority to Fox News (and it’s true; except for ratings, influence, quality, and profit MSNBC kicks Fox’s butt). And yet, they run testimonials to state power with a frequency that rivals North Korean TV.
But in another sense these ads are the “extra” itself — a rather sad and perfunctory attempt to satisfy urges that barely rise above the masturbatory. The self-love oozes from the screen as the hosts’ inner-15-year-olds realize this is their chance to prove they’re as great as their favorite social-studies teacher told them they were!
Thanks to the magic of Hollywood, they preen for the cameras with an almost post-coital glow as they deliver their little sermonettes that amount to pointless verbal onanism. Hey, look. There’s no-necked Ed Schultz at a diner, looking like he’s having one last cup of coffee before he has to work up a sweat burying the corpse of a dissident union official still moldering in the trunk of his ten-year-old Coupe de Ville. And there’s Rachel Maddow (looking a bit like that aforementioned dead union official) trying to give her Stakhanovite commitment to infrastructure projects a romantic hue.
All Your Children Belong to Us
And now there’s Melissa Harris-Perry. By now you’ve heard of or seen the ad, but just in case here it is. In short, she thinks the idea that your kids are, well, yours is outdated and counterproductive.
Rich Lowry, praise be upon him, offers a fine summary of what Harris-Perry is getting at here. Actually, no disrespect to the guy who signs my paycheck (who is not only a powerful man, but a handsome one) but Harris-Perry herself was more than clear enough about what she’s after. The thing is only 30 seconds long, very highly produced, and straight to the point.
This is important because Harris-Perry is now simultaneously insisting she won’t apologize and insisting that she didn’t say what she so obviously said. In the ad she’s talking about the role of government, government investments, and ridiculing the idea of “private” ownership of kids. “We have to break through,” she urged, “our kind of private idea that kids belong to their parents or kids belong to their families.” Now she claims she was talking about civil society and voluntarism?
As the guy who took Obama to his first stable said when the president was about to step in some equine feces, “Oh, that’s horses***.”

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