Newsweek’s deputy opinion editor, Batya Ungar-Sargon, was on CNN’s Reliable Sources with host Brian Stelter to discuss her book Bad News: How Woke Media Is Undermining Democracy.
Short clips of my interview with @bungarsargon have been making the Twitter rounds. So here's the entire segment. She began by saying "it's very brave to have me on," so I asked why… pic.twitter.com/1nxX1Cb1fl
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) November 8, 2021
The interview didn’t go quite the way Stelter would have wanted it to go. Ungar-Sargon was polite but firm in her answers, and the points she wanted to highlight. She responded to his questions by clearly emphasising how the media have fuelled the growth of the woke culture. She tells Stelter:
It is woke to be saying that merit-based education is white supremacy.
Regarding The New York Times:
Again and again, personnel decisions being made to suit the very, very woke pressures of online mobs that were oftentimes created by their own employees.
It is not that some people want to have their say, it’s that they literally have imported these highly, highly, specialised radical academic ideas, and if you don’t hue to these very radical specific ideas you get thrown out, essentially. We are not talking about debate here, we are talking about the silencing of debate.
On the elections in Virginia, last week:
It is such a self-own to tell people who are worried about the economy, that, that is white supremacy.
Wokeism/wokeness/wokexiety is an extension of the distraction-squirrel tactic. Essentially:
Throw a squirrel at someone/some group, to which they react defensively.
Keep doing so, and the target/s will seek a means of placating the squirrel thrower/s, because defending oneself against flying squirrels is tiring on a number of levels, not least reputationally.
The target, however, mistakenly believes that the squirrel thrower wants a win-win outcome, and hence compromises their stance, thinking that their showing of good faith by giving something to their opponent, will be reciprocated, and thus negotiation on a less damaging level becomes possible.
Not so fast.
Now that the squirrel throwers know that their tactics have a desirable outcome, they continue to do what has thus far worked for them: throwing squirrels.
The target continues reacting defensively to the squirrels being thrown, thinking that their must be some misunderstanding, and that perhaps another demonstration of their good faith will clear everything up. They make another sacrifice.
The target continues to give ground whenever a squirrel heads toward them, because they refuse to believe that the squirrel thrower does not share their values/philosophies/goals.
This giving of ground – the making of concessions – is incremental, however, which is why the target does not perceive they have lost much by their repeated attempts at placation. They perceive only the present squirrel, and the trivial amount of Danegeld they are handing over. “Two pieces is no weight to be missing from our pockets. We’ll start to worry when they demand 200 pieces.”
When the same blackmail occurs over a period of decades, however, those incremental, barely measurable concessions, cumulatively result in an outcome inconceivable when the coercion began.
Here we are, decades later, still thinking nothing of the price of placation (it’s 50 pieces now, but that’s inflation for you), and still imagining that if only we demonstrated more of our good faith, or by a different means, (perhaps with music?), maybe the squirrel throwers will believe us THIS TIME.
Then we can all go back to milking our unicorns and frolicking together in fields of daffodils. The squirrel throwers and squirrel dodgers united as one happy-happy-joy-joy tribe.
Soon, my friends, soon.
Mr Potato head has been taken to the cleaners a few times recently.