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October 19, 2009


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Thanks for posting this Jodi. I have had the exact same thoughts - the only difference is that I still tune Rachel in a couple of times a week. But you are right - an example of what you are talking about was this past summer she spent so much time on "debunking" the town hall meetings it was ridiculous. Even in covering this story she neglected the genuine fear of the folks screaming at the town halls. She became so fixated on the "astro turf" organizing of the meetings she completely ignored the economic sources of people's angst. Why not talk about the fact that democrats have not provided a real response to the economic crisis - a response that would address the financial precariousness of most Americans.

Unfortunately I do not know if she understands the opportunity she is pissing away. She seems rather glib and even condescending in many of her segments. More than once I have thought she represents the caricature of a snooty liberal who thinks they know more than everyone else. Not only is not interesting but it is also not very useful.

Bob Allen

I don't watch Rachel much, but do enjoy what I have seen of her. However, I listen to what passes for left wing talk shows on satellite radio, such as Thom Hartmann and Stephanie Miller, and frankly the only entertaining part of their shows is bashing the rightists' wacky antics. It is exactly as you've described, they do this "openness" thing that amounts to kowtowing to the petit bourgeois class, trying to convince them of how Obama's policies are better for small business, mom and apple pie. I really hate to say this but not only are these "mainstream" lefties void of any knowledge whatsoever of radical politics (what I mean here is, whilst Jodi and company may be out of my league in terms of undersrtanding theory et al, I am a genius compared to Thom Hartmann), which makes them uninteresting, but also the reality of capitalism's failure is too much for the public to bear- we already "know" it-- I'll bet Micheal Moore's movie will flop for this reason.. it takes ten years to be able to gain the distance needed for the story to be told, to "pass" as "entertainment", see Richard Slotkin's Gunfighter Nation for a breakdown on this...


Bob--that's a really interesting point: "the reality of capitalism's failure is too much for the public to bear." And that connects with Alain's point as well, why not provide a response to the economic source of people's anxiety, etc. If these 'progressive' shows could address the economic situation, the anger, and despair, the failure of the democrats AND start trying to bring in alternatives to capitalism, then maybe we would have something.

Overall, I'm just really struck by the inability to bear the loss of capitalism--it's like realizing everything you've been told is a lie, a lie designed to make you work like a dog and to take your money and give it to the rich people that you believe you will be one of one day. And the left has not done a good job offering alternatives. But we can..yes we can.

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