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Sunday, September 20, 2020

Chotiner strikes again - Chotiner vs. AEI's Danielle Pletka


When we last saw the New Yorker's Ian Chotiner, he was embarrassing free speech grifting stooge Thomas Chatterton Williams (to think I once admired Williams.)

Now Williams is, as far as I have been able to discern, only loosely connected to the wingnut welfare system funded foremost by Koch.

(UPDATE: Williams became an official member of the plutocrat funded wingnut welfare system by accepting a post at the AEI in December 2020.)

But in Chotiner's interview, published today, with Danielle Pletka, he strikes at the heart of the Koch plutocracy since Pletka is an American Enterprise Institute bigwig (like IDWs Charles Murray and Christina Hoff Sommers). 

Chotiner asked Pletka about her time working for infamously racist Jesse Helms.

You know things that were wrong. This isn’t a “may.”

But I worked for him on the Middle East and South Asia, and I was very proud of what we accomplished.

You know his record on South Africa, though, correct? [Helms opposed any sanctions against the apartheid regime in South Africa. When Nelson Mandela visited the Capitol in 1994, soon after he was elected South Africa’s first post-apartheid President, Helms turned his back on him.]

I didn’t work on South Africa. I worked on the Middle East and South Asia.

I understand that. But I’m saying you must know about the guy’s career? I mean, the Civil Rights Act, the Martin Luther King holiday, his interactions with Carol Moseley Braun, his ads, his comments about South Africa and African National Congress. This stuff isn’t completely unknown to you.

I’m not quite sure what this has to do with my article.

What a weasel. And then this part:

Most significant to me is that Pletka was a "never Trumper" who claims to have changed her mind about Trump. I think what likely happened was that the plutocrats yanked her chain and she fell in line.

...and I really am crushed by this cancel culture, by the bullying, and by the transformation of American political discourse. And, by the way, I have really been happy, actually, to in some ways blame Donald Trump for that. It started with him. What did Michelle Obama say? “When they go low, we go high.” That has not been the guiding principle here.

Trump is probably making cancel culture, however much significance you attribute to it, significantly worse. That’s why I was surprised a little bit by the op-ed, because it seems like his defeat would be good for some of the things you’re worried about.

Yes, except for the fact that I think the ship has already sailed.

The obsession with "cancel culture" is telling. I think it's probable the AEI is the original instigator of the Harper's letter. Certainly many of the Harper's letter signers have Koch connections.

The Koch-dominated branch of the Right promotes the Trump antifa smear campaign against Biden, a campaign possibly inspired by and coordinated with the IDW's favorite shameless grifter Andy Ngo
Who was nominated is irrelevant, you mean?

Yes. I think that that choice was irrelevant, because I don’t think that those voters are the people who are steering the direction of the Party.

You write, “Are there problems on the right—horrible nasties on a par with the violent protesters who have lately inflicted untold damage on many U.S. cities, businesses and lives? You bet. These execrable gun-toting racists have received too much tacit encouragement from Trump.” Would you say it’s tacit? Isn’t it more direct than tacit?

I have to think about my answer. I think Donald Trump has played an opposite and equal role in encouraging bad people in the destruction that we’ve seen this year.

I’m asking because he talked about liberating Michigan. And then what he said about Kyle Rittenhouse.

Well, again, Donald Trump’s reaction, for example, in the wake of Charlottesville was abhorrent. I find an unwillingness on the part of many to condemn the destruction that takes place. The shootings, the violence, the threatening that’s been taking place—I find that also extraordinarily troubling. Now, is it incumbent upon the President to behave better? Damn, yes. That is why, for the last three and a half years, I’ve done very little but condemn Donald Trump on these matters. I try to be fair in calling balls and strikes, as I tried to be fair with Obama. I’m a conservative, so my view of what a ball and a strike is is different from yours. Nonetheless, those things are abhorrent. The problem that I see and the problem that brought me to write this is that there is an almost equal and opposite reaction on the other side.

You follow up that last quote by writing, “But they do not represent the mainstream of the Republican Party or guide the choices of the vast mass of Republican members of Congress.” Can you explain this a little bit more? I was slightly confused, because Trump is actually the President. And so it feels like maybe that does represent the mainstream of the Party, since he is the nominee and extremely popular and the most powerful and important Republican.
So Pletka's argument is that while violent extremists do represent the Democratic Party in spite of its nominee's moderate positions, on the other hand violent Trump supporters don't represent the Republican Party even though its leader, Trump, openly defended their violence.

The mind-fuckery and SHAMELESSNESS is absolutely appalling.

And to demonstrate once again the wretched character of the people aligned with Koch and the IDW, like Pinker and his defenders and the IDW/GamerGate creeps, Pletka takes a stupid cheap shot at Chotiner.

I’m thirty-seven—no, no, I’m thirty-eight.

You can’t even add.

Pletka hates Chotiner for allowing her to reveal herself as the soulless toady and defender of racists that she always has been and likely always will be.

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