Malkin Not Just Wrong...But Lazy. That's What Is Offensive.

Posted by: David Kiley on June 3, 2008

malkin.jpg

Most of the comments about my rant against conservative commentator Michelle Malkin and her cause against paisley and donuts drew support. There were some comments I could not approve because of the use of salty language. A few came into my e-mail box, rather than in the form of posts.

But I figure I would address one complaint from the Malkin supporters. My targeting of Malkin has nothing to do with her right-wing politics. She is entitled. What I was targeting was her exploitive intellectual laziness in virtually all her arguments, and the ease with which Dunkin Donuts caved in to her.

Malkin is part of the brigade who insists people who want to see the U.S. end the occupation of Iraq are for “surrender” and do not support the troops. She insists that shrapnel wounds suffered by Sen. John Kerry in Vietnam were self inflicted with no evidence. She called for Transportation Secty. Norman Mineta to step down from his post because his internment during WW2 as a Japanese American clouds his objectivity. Shall I go on? She doesn’t think. She is just a water carrier.

Recently, Malkin flamed the owners of Absolut vodka over an ad in Mexico that showed a 19th century map of the country representing Mexican territory extending into what is now California and Texas. She says this ad showed Absolut fanning the flames of the “reconquista” movement that wants to see those territories restored to Mexico. Malkin believes Latinos who protested a House bill aimed at cracking down on illegal immigration believe in “reconquista.” Malkin added that “the intellectual underpinnings of reconquista are embraced by the vast majority of mainstream Hispanic politicians.” Wrong! Lazy! But thanks for playing our game.

These sorts of things are false, of course. An Asian-American, Malkin also shows an odd and ironic affinity for defending racial profiling, a subject on which she wrote an entire book.

And, of course, she seems to have a real problem with paisley. Instead of going after Rachel Ray for wearing an obvious pro-terrorism paisley scarf, she should be going after Ray for her lame performance on Million Dollar Password.

Reader Comments

Campbell

June 4, 2008 12:43 PM

Newsweek obviously supports unscrupulous businesses that use illegal labor. Doesn't matter who you are. Americans end up footing the bill for the health care, social services and the education of illegal labor and their siblings. Businesses hire this illegal labor as subcontractors so they don't have to pay taxes. The reason why businesses use illegal labor is for short term profit because these companies are not an integral part of the community. Why would your community support companies that import illegal labor instead of hiring the American worker. The reason they don't hire Americans is because they don't want to be a part of that community. Profit in whatever way is their only goal, even if making those profits are at the expense of that community.

One Old Vet

June 4, 2008 12:57 PM

David Kiley lost any credibility he might have had with the picture of Michelle Malkin he posted in his June 3rd story; "Malkin Not Just Wrong...But Lazy. That's What Is Offensive".

There are plenty of pictures of Malkin without resorting to using a split-second video capture that puts he in a cartoonish pose.

I didn't bother reading his story after that.

vmonter

June 4, 2008 1:10 PM

Water carrier? Perhaps. Psycho? Definitely.

Nate

June 4, 2008 1:57 PM

I have no idea what Campbell was talking about - what does Newsweek have to do with this?

Spot-on on Michelle Malkin. Anyone who wants proof her her laziness need only look at her original articles - she consistently misspells the scarf-wearing chef's name as "Rachel" Ray.

Getting the name right isn't Journalism 101. It's the first-class-of-high-school-journalism basic. Yes, we pros occasionally get a name wrong, but to do it constantly and consistently is nothing shy of disrespectful to your readers and your subject. It shows a wanton disregard for facts, and if you're not reporting facts you're simply not a journalist.

LonewackoDotCom

June 4, 2008 2:26 PM

Since you seem to know so much about this, could you name three Mexican-American political leaders who haven't expressed in some way support for "the intellectual underpinnings of reconquista"?

(Note: to avoid embarrassment, search for their name at my site first.)

Rob

June 4, 2008 3:18 PM

I agree with Ms Malkin on just about everything. Your needing to use an unflattering picture of this beautiful woman to help support your article just shows the weakness of your argument.

Shaun Kelly

June 5, 2008 4:02 AM

Rob,

Your comments "this beautiful woman" and "I agree with Ms Malkin on just about everything" lead me to believe you are either a devout neocon idealogue or genitals influence your thought processes far too much. I've followed Malkin for years - she is nothing more than a vicious, mean spirited, non-thinking, lazy, fear-monger. Anyone whose opinion differs from hers eventually gets labeled a "hater". I see no "beauty" in a person such as this.

random

June 5, 2008 8:55 AM

A long time ago, the term pundit used to denote an expert. Now it's a pejorative thanks to the large number of lazy and obnoxious commentators from the right and from the left, telling people what they want to hear regardless of facts.

Do you think Malkin cares about whether her arguments are correct or not? She has throngs of angry, xenophobic fans who assume that every Muslim is a terrorist and every Latino who doesn't want to give up his cultural roots is an illegal immigrant. No, wait, never mind. They assume that every Latino is a border-hopper. She needs to please them by creating vague and broad accusations of conspiracies, nefarious culture wars and evil cabals of equally interchangeable cardboard bogeymen plotting the downfall of America, so that's exactly what she does.

The vague, self-indulgent rantings of pundits for their loyal fans are also notoriously hard to disprove because there's so much wiggle room. For example, how does one prove that no Mexican-American politician hasn't expressed some sort of support for "the intellectual underpinnings of reconquista," especially as defined by Malkin and her fans?

If we forget for a moment that instead of backing up their vague and nebulous claim, they're asking you to disprove it and think about history, Reconquista was the expansion of Spanish and Portuguese Christian nations in Europe when they pushed out Muslims out of Iberia. It has nothing to do with the New World and I've failed to hear Fox, Calderon and even the fiery Obrador mention anything about expansion in their speeches in any other way than economic. But yet, a Malkin fan could easily say that "economic expansion" is a code word for conquering parts of America because Mexico can't possibly expand its economy on its own. If that doesn't work, they can turn to negative evidence or redefine what they mean by the term.

Let's remember that the same crop of people who fret about "reconquista" despite the fact that it was over more than a thousand years ago also assume that Muslims fleeing from their home countries to find work and better standards of living in Europe are all part of some insidious al-Quaeda-esque agenda to take over Europe by sheer numbers. This despite the fact that most Muslims hate fundamentalist hardliners and prefer their movies, TV, music and nightclubs. Brushing off a Spanish word from Medieval history and using it in a manner that scares the wits of out a group of loyal fans (who want to be scared in the first place mind you), does not an argument make.

And David, note that apparently by posting an unflattering picture of Malkin, your argument is null, void and weak by default. See it's not the facts that matter, not how much you or she know about an issue or what the article is even about. It's the picture. They have no need to prove you wrong, simply to state that you are and point to the bad picture as proof that you're a "biased pinko commie socialist liberal" and since everything you say is wrong, if you disagree with Malkin, it means that she must be right. I've seen this train of thought at work countless times.

Bottom line. If you find yourself agreeing with virtually everything a pundit says, you should start reading something other than his or her blog and talk to real people.

Christian

June 5, 2008 12:11 PM

Weakness of HIS argument? So you agree with Ms Malkin that anyone who wears a scarf or headdress is de facto a radical extremist, and that even depiction of an article of clothing in an advert is "un-American" and should be self-censored. Goodbye constitution. And this is the country that supposedly gave the world freedom from oppression? The fact that companies are willing to give into a woman who is clearly delusional because of not wanting to inflame the ignorance of the most intellectually lazy people in society shows how far standards have slipped. As for criticising war records, when was the last time she picked up her tin hat and fought for her country? Hot air apparently is the name of her website- sounds about right since I'm sure behind the rhetoric she is just another armchair general willing to fight to the last drop of someone else's blood.

Big Boi

June 5, 2008 1:34 PM

Ok Rob, I guess that makes you a water carrier. Some of you readers are silly for not reading the article just because of the picture. Considering the subject, its a fairly accurate, and non doctored image. Besides that, well Kiley is right, Malkin always comes out like she has a revelation, something wrong that the rest of us can't see and tries to smear it in people's faces. I mean that must be a good way to garner attention and sell merchandise but a journalist, she cannot be. All that said, yeah I kinda, kinda think she's a hottie.

huerfano

June 5, 2008 3:10 PM

So, Nate, "if you're not reporting facts you're simply not a journalist." Calling Rachael Ray a chef is incorrect. She describes herself as a cook and says that she is not and has never been a chef. How lazy are you?

Tony

June 5, 2008 3:51 PM

talk about lazy - if you are going to dispute her facts on the MSM Hispanic politicians why not provide some evidence?

at least two of the most prominent hispanic politicians are former or current members or supporters of La Raza which means The Race...that's not many races or the human race, that is one race...

and exactly which map was it that Absolut published? From when? What about the ad agencies own website which dictates provocation and being a change agent?

talk about lazy - Newsweek seems to be all too familiar with the topic

talkguy

June 6, 2008 10:38 AM

I think this is all much ado about nothing. I am a 43 year old white conservative christian who votes for people: the candidate, their values and issues and not the political party the represent. I think the problem with "pundits" of all varieties. It's all about who can make the most noise, the most outrageous claim and then get pounded into our brain in the next 24 to 48 hour news cycle. I am sick of "pundits" who do not think before they speak.

Nate

June 6, 2008 4:12 PM

Much less lazy than you, Huerfano, and probably much smarter. She's called a chef by her network:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/rachael_ray/article/0,1974,FOOD_9928_1702057,00.html


Is listed as a chef in Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:American_television_chefs

And is referred to as a chef in other media:
http://www.slate.com/id/2122085/
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=90958146

So where is your citation, Huerfano? Let's see you prove you're not lazy.

Nate

June 8, 2008 4:32 PM

(Guess the first submission didn't go through, so I'll try to defend my honor again)

Uh, much less lazy than you, Huerfano. She's listed as a chef in Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:American_television_chefs

And called a chef in other media:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:American_television_chefs
http://www.slate.com/id/2122085/

She may not consider herself one - that's fine. But it's her job title.

Richard C Maenpaa

June 25, 2008 11:20 PM

boy howdy! I thought it was hil;arious that the very first comment was from someone who couldn't tell Newsweek from Businessweek... Awesome! Campbell, don't change a hair for me, not if you care for me... you just keep rockin' on just the way you are... Hey, look everybody! A Repugnican!

Michelle

July 29, 2008 9:33 PM

The banality of her shrill is all she's got in life (can you imagine what it must be like to live with her). There's segment of society that's so frustrated that it's no longer the 1950's. They've lost their power grip and they're too stupid to figure out why. Malkin tells them just what they want to hear and the truth doesn't matter to her or her narrow audience. Malkin is being handed a lot of money to use her mouth to milk a generation of old republican gas bags.

Jim

August 29, 2008 5:41 AM

Haha, I have read quite a few comments where the commenter was actually pissed about the picture used but with no mention of the things addressed in the article. If somebody is reporting on someone's incredibly ugly side why would they go out of their way to put a good looking picture of someone up?

It isnt any harder to find this picture than it is to find one where she is posing to look better. So if it were you would you choose the good picture or the one which truly depicts her actual nature?

Nathan

October 10, 2008 8:00 PM

Huerfano, I am surprised that you don't recognize values that go into determining which facts should be researched.
Let's say that Ray did not consider herself a chef and that her title is not chef. It is true that there would be an ignorance of facts on the part of the person reporting who called her a chef, but the main line of the argument does not rest on her being a chef.

Clearly you need a more sophisticated understanding of the inner-workings of arguments.

Rocky M.

July 29, 2009 7:52 PM

Just saying someone is wrong does not make them wrong. State why they are wrong and prove your point. If you can!

Post a comment

 

About

News, opinions, inflammatory meanderings and occasional ravings about the world of advertising, marketing and media. By marketing editor Burt Helm, Innovation Editor Helen Walters, and senior correspondent Michael Arndt.

BW Mall - Sponsored Links

Buy a link now!