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Friday, November 27, 2015

Krauthammer "cul-de-sac"another fine journalism mess

Republican pundit Charles Krauthammer pontificates with authoritave, albeit wrong minded, flair. He reminds me of a political version of Oliver Hardy, of the popular Laurel & Hardy comedy team. 

Oliver Hardy of the team of "Laural and Hardy"

Like Hardy, who performed his comedy in hundreds of features and films, Krauthammer acts like he knows what he's doing in every situation, as though he's an all knowing expert. Similarly, Krauthammer typically has a talent for capturing the moment (just like Hardy!) but at the the end of his argument, his credibility fails and his bumbling reasoning is exposed.  

Krauthammer's short memory and his opinion about President Obama's immersion in the currently disintegrating Syrian crises is another example of "Hardy-onian" fumbling punditry.

It's convoluted thinking for Krauthammer to criticize President Obama's Syrian policy. He knows that Republicans have blocked every foriegn policy initiative, whereby a US led coalition could have helped to prevent the Syrian humanitarian and civil war crises.

In fact, Krauthammer's short term memory is also blocking the historic facts. His opinion, published in The Washington Post, completely overlooked how the Republicans stopped an intervention when the evil Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used poison gas, to kill his own people!  Although the US is a signer on the Geneva Protocol, outlawing the use of poison gas, the US Republican led Congress chose to ignore this obligation and, likewise, ignored Assad's evil and deadly use of the poison.  

Krauthammer selectively chose, instead, to remember his own "Hardy-onian" reinvention of the Syrian crisis. He writes, "Against the advice of his top civilian and military aides, Obama refused to intervene (in Syria). The widows and orphans (Obama) now so ostentatiously champions are the product of his coldhearted refusal to do anything that might sully his peacemaking image." This is a reinvention of history. Republicans are culpable in the Syrian disaster and humanitarian genocide.

Dear Mr. Krauthammer, I remember the development of the Syrian crisis differently. In fact, only God knows how many mothers lost their children during Assad's use of poison gas on his people, while the Republican congress ignored the Geneva Protocol.

Moreover, Krauthammer contributes to the unfounded fear about innocent refugees who are not terrorists. He writes, "Obama charged the Republicans with cowardice, afraid to grant admittance to '3-year-old orphans'. He gave zero credit to the very real concern of governors and other officials that terrorists could be embedded amid the refugees. This is no theoretical proposition. At least one of the Paris attackers came to France by way of Greece."  
Oh paaaleeze Mr. Krauthammer! 

As a journalist, you have an ethical obligation to report the news, rather than to create it. There's no evidence that any of the attackers in France were Syrian refugees. Rather, the killers were terrorists who somehow avoided international surveillance. 

Instead, Krauthammer should write (in Maine Writer prose), "President Obama gets credit for reminding Americans about how difficult it is for any refugees to enter the US, and this diligence is essential to protect Americans from the risk of ISIS "look alike" attacks". 

Fueling refugee mania, when there's no evidence to support your fear mongerng is buzzing on yellow journalism.

Unfortunately, Krauthammer writes his salient opinion point at the very end of his article, assuming the reader can endure his narrative long enough to read it.  He writes, "...Trump-like anti-immigrant, anti-foreigner, now anti-Muslim, anti-Arab rhetoric — and don’t forget those cunning Chinese stealing our jobs and ruthless Mexicans raping our women — will not play well in a general election. Politically, it will be fatal. John Kasich has forcefully denounced this slide into the swamp. Where are the others?"

Advising Charles Krauthammer about journalism is like telling Oliver Hardy he isn't really funny. But, in my opinion, Krauthammer should remember journalism 101, ie to begin his essays with the point to be made in the narrative. 


Krauthammer's essay, "The Syrian immigration cul-de-sac", is "another fine mess" he can't explain with accuracy.

(And, if you don't mind my asking.....how did the metaphor "cul-de-sac" fit with your opinion, anyway?)

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