Friday, December 16, 2016

The Rough Beast Slouches Towards Wisconsin

Wisconsin talk radio host Charlie Sykes is blessedly hanging up his microphone after 25 years, in which he fully admits he helped Paul Ryan, Reince Priebus and Scott Walker come to power. Normally I'd note his retirement gleefully and yell "good riddance, asshole" but before the door hits him where the good Lord split him, in a NY Times mea culpa, Sykes at least admits that he helped bring about Trump as well.

How had we gotten here? 
One staple of every radio talk show was, of course, the bias of the mainstream media. This was, indeed, a target-rich environment. But as we learned this year, we had succeeded in persuading our audiences to ignore and discount any information from the mainstream media. Over time, we’d succeeded in delegitimizing the media altogether — all the normal guideposts were down, the referees discredited
That left a void that we conservatives failed to fill. For years, we ignored the birthers, the racists, the truthers and other conspiracy theorists who indulged fantasies of Mr. Obama’s secret Muslim plot to subvert Christendom, or who peddled baseless tales of Mrs. Clinton’s murder victims. Rather than confront the purveyors of such disinformation, we changed the channel because, after all, they were our allies, whose quirks could be allowed or at least ignored. 
We destroyed our own immunity to fake news, while empowering the worst and most reckless voices on the right
This was not mere naïveté. It was also a moral failure, one that now lies at the heart of the conservative movement even in its moment of apparent electoral triumph. Now that the election is over, don’t expect any profiles in courage from the Republican Party pushing back against those trends; the gravitational pull of our binary politics is too strong.

I’m only glad I’m not going to be a part of it anymore.

Good to know Sykes admits the right has destroyed the country.  But hey, he's retiring, and most of the "Never Trump" GOP he'll suffer very little from Trump's American nightmare, nor do I expect him to lose too much sleep over it.

But hey Charlie, thanks for playing the game, and thanks especially for Paul Ryan, the guy who's going to ruin the retirements of all those hard working folks in Wisconsin that you care about so much, with Trump and Priebus's help.

You're a good soldier, Chuckles.

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