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A Left-Wing Fruitcake Accuses Talk Radio of Inciting Right-Wing Fruitcakes

April 17, 2009

I wrote here and here about the irresponsible and irrational editorial published by the Beaver County Times regarding the Poplawski tragedy. Yesterday, the paper managed to one-up itself.  By allowing so-called political writer J. D. Prose to break from his typically irrelevant blathering about local politics and instead pen a screed against talk radio they reinforced the now-common perception that the paper’s editorial staff is dominated by leftist crackpots.  His hate-filled and fact-devoid rant was worse than the original editorial.

He wrote:

From the creepy and weepy Glenn Beck, Faux News’ own Doomsday Nostradamus, to the frightfully kooky extremist Michael Savage to second-tier wannabes like Pittsburgh’s Jim Quinn, those who sow the seeds of perpetual paranoia should, but never will, accept their share of blame for the Poplawskis of this world.

So, J.D., please offer us definitive proof that Poplawski listened regularly to any of the entertainers that you mentioned.  We’ll wait.

But in the meantime answer this:  Do you see the irony in beginning your little rant with the condescending, “If you’re a nutty, right-wing conspiracy theorist… just save your time and skip to the Sports section,” continuing it with, “those who fan the conspiracy flames and feed the psychoses of the Tin Foil Hat Crowd, ” and then attempting to link extremism on the right to Beck, Savage, and Quinn?  Your editorial was the left-wing version of the same sort of conspiracy-mongering you claim exists on the right.  In as much as you want to promote the idea that talk radio spreads distortions  (you used the Fairness Doctrine as an example) your entire column likewise spread a distortion — the baseless intimation that the hosts you mentioned can be directly linked to anyone’s violent behavior.  They’re not the catalysts for violence you are claiming and yet you rail against their existence in the public sphere.  You are using the same tactic you ascribe the talk show hosts.  I suppose I must point that out given that the blinders you wear would preclude such a degree of self-awareness.

I’ll grant that there are extreme elements on the right that influenced Poplawski just as there are extreme elements on the left that have driven the likes of Ayers and Dohrn.  But your attempt to take the acts of a disturbed person who apparently frequented neo-Nazi Internet sites and tie his barbarism to mainstream conservative talk radio is yellow journalism at its worst.

Stick to the political beat.  You’re lack of knowledge and logic aren’t as noticable in a column no one reads or cares about.

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