Posted on February 18, 2023




Framing the reaction as the real story


Daniel Clark



Since the start of the Biden administration, the "Republicans pounce" story line has become a cliche throughout the liberal media. Republicans pounce on Hunter Biden photos. Republicans pounce on the latest inflation numbers. Republicans pounce on supply chain breakdowns. This way, liberal scandals and shortcomings are never the things that are being reported. Only the reactions of the opposition are. What matters is not the original outrage, but only the accusation that conservatives are "playing politics" with it, in a cynical attempt to gain an upperhand.

Take the great M&M scandal, for example. In order to reflect a "more dynamic, progressive world," Mars candies changed the two female M&M characters on its commercials by giving them sensible shoes, in place of the brown character's high heels, and the green one's Nancy Sinatra boots. This was obviously done to placate the feminists, but after Fox News host Tucker Carlson criticized the remake, he became the story. Obviously, he was merely calling out the truly silly, outrageous behavior of the wokedy-wokes at Mars, but the way it has been reported is that Tucker Carlson is infatuated with the green M&M, and demands that she be given back her tantalizing attire in order to satisfy his libido.

To use the trendy vernacular, Carlson "pounced" on Mars for its capitulation to wokeism. In response, the liberal media deconstructed the narrative by making his behavior the focus, and pushing that of the candy company to the fringe. That's the counterpounce.

In early January, Consumer Product Safety Commissioner Richard Trumpka Jr. said in an interview with Bloomberg that "a ban on gas stoves is on the table." Naturally, Republicans pounced. Their claims that the Biden administration was considering a ban on gas stoves was subsequently deemed false by liberal "fact checkers," even though the CPSC is a federal bureau within the executive branch. The media narrative has been that critics of such a policy are either paranoid, or deliberately fabricating the controversy.

So how loony is it to expect that a gas stove ban is in the works? Not very, to anyone who has paid attention to what's been happening at the local and state levels. In 2019, the city of Berkeley, California became the first of 99 localities to amend its building code to make it illegal for new buildings to be equipped for gas appliances. That goes for furnaces, as well as clothes dryers and stoves. Such a ban was passed in New York city in 2021, and will actually be implemented this year.

Electric heating is roughly 33 percent more expensive than heat from natural gas, but the fact that eco-lunatics are driving people's home heating costs up by a third has not been treated as relevant to the story. Instead, the obvious hostility that liberal Democrats have toward natural gas is being characterized as a false impression created by a right-wing scare campaign.

In 2015, liberal nonprofits began staging "Drag Queen Story Hours" in ultra-progressive communities, but have since branched out to libraries across the country, and even overseas. As you've surely already guessed, it is not this outrageous attempt to rob children of their innocence, but the opposition to it that has been treated as controversial. A bill that was introduced in the Tennessee state senate would prohibit "adult cabaret entertainment" from being performed in front of children, something one might have expected to already be covered by laws against the corruption of minors. Nevertheless, in a 26-6 vote, all six Democrats voted against the measure. Guess who the weirdos are.

A recent Forbes magazine article purported to explain "How Drag Queens Became A Right-Wing Target." Bloomberg agreed that "Drag Shows Are the Next Target for Republican Lawmakers." The Daily Beast charged, "Arkansas Drag Ban Is the Cover for Bigger Anti-LGBTQ Attack, Activists Say." The people whose actions had precipitated the conflict are consistently portrayed as innocent bystanders.

The aim here is to create a political atmosphere in which nothing that liberals do can possibly be scrutinized. There are no genuine controversies, only meta-controversies that focus on the process of the debate, instead of how it came about in the first place. Unfortunately for the rest of us, no problem has ever been solved by refusing to discuss it. Once the consequences are realized, no counterpounce will be a sufficient response. When you're cranking down your thermostat so you can afford to preheat your electric stove, for instance, one thing you won't be thinking is, "What a crazy guy that Tucker Carlson is."



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