March 25, 2014

Following the dust up over Rep. Paul Ryan's remarks about inner city culture, Ryan being called out by his fellow House member, Rep. Barbara Lee and Ryan's subsequent backtracking, Fox's Bill O'Reilly and his buddy George Will did their best to try to convince Bill-O's audience that there's not a racist bone in poor old Ryan's body. He's just being picked on by those mean old "race hustlers."

O'REILLY: Why does Lee and all these other people, Sharpton, all of them continue to do this? Why?

WILL: There are three reasons in ascending order of importance. The first is it's a verbal tic. It's a reflex on their part to call people racists, just as it was for Joe McCarthy to call people communists in 1954. People stopped listening to him. People will stop listening to these people.

Second, they're frightened of Paul Ryan. He's a political talent and might be a strong presidential candidate.

But most important, they’re terrified of his fundamental message, which the president himself has said and social scientists have documented, that the fundamental problem is cultural, that's the word.

Given the age of Bill-O's audience, hopefully that day is coming sooner and not later for O'Reilly and Will as well. So now pointing out that someone's using racist dogwhistles is the new McCarthyism. That's rich. This takes conservative victimhood syndrome to a whole new level.

Here's more from Fox's blog on O'Reilly and Will carrying water for their hero Paul Ryan: ‘Cultural Problem Across the Board’: Will Defends Paul Ryan Amid Race Controversy:

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) has been accused of racism after he made comments about poverty.

“We have got this tailspin of culture in our inner cities, in particular of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning the value and the culture of work, and so there’s a real culture problem here that has to be dealt with,” Ryan said on “Bill Bennett’s Morning in America” radio show. [...]

In an opinion piece for The Washington Post, Will wrote:

The family is the primary transmitter of social capital — the values and character traits that enable people to seize opportunities. Family structure is a primary predictor of an individual’s life chances, and family disintegration is the principal cause of the intergenerational transmission of poverty.

“This isn’t a white/black problem,” Will told Bill O’Reilly. “This is a cultural problem across the board.”


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