Saturday, October 06, 2012


Jack Welch set off a wave of Bureau of Labor Statistics trutherism yesterday, as you know:
"Unbelievable job numbers," tweeted Jack Welch, the iconic former boss of General Electric on Friday morning, moments after the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its September jobs figures. "These Chicago guys will do anything," he continued.
What's striking to me about that is the reference to "Chicago" -- a name that's profoundly sinister to right-wingers and utterly benign to everyone else in America. Where did Welch get this shibboleth? I suspect he got it from the same place your email-forwarding, Obama-hating right-wing uncle gets this and similar in-jokes and buzzwords: from the right-wing media, particularly Fox News.

No one, as far as I know, has ever done a survey, but I'd bet that right-wing billionaires log as many hours watching Fox News as do all of our non-billionaire uncles and aunts and grandparents who have, to our horror, gone Fox-crazy.

In fact, I wonder if that's what's saving President Obama in the first post-Citizens United election. You watch some of the ads being generated by pro-Romney groups and they seem to be talking in the same epistemically closed right-wing language Fox speaks -- they're not speaking the language of persuadable swing voters at all. Are the payers of the pipers calling the tunes? Are the billionaires demanding that the campaign be conducted in wingnut-speak? (When you look at the Jeremiah Wright ad Joe Ricketts wanted to run, you certainly get that impression.)

And this may extend to the Romney campaign itself. Why didn't he move to the center from last spring until (arguably) now? Why did he pick Paul Ryan? Is this an approach he had to commit to, in return for right-wing billionaire bucks? I wonder.

See also: Trump, Donald J.


Victor said...

They Conservative powers-that-be are letting Mitt pivot to the left for awile, to grab votes - because he's still chained to the Religious and anti-Obama right's efforts, the Neocons war-mongering, and the billionaire's bucks, and they can call in their (micro)chips anytime they want.

And why should the uber rich watch or listen any other news sources, outside of FOX and Right Wing Radio Rushwanda, or newpapers outside of the WSJ, where they might be criticized?

Who wouldn't want their asses kissed 24 X & X 365, and their sphincter licked, over the airwaves and in print?

Btw - The plus side of Obama's bad/horrible/terrible performance is that the Super PAC bucks will stay in the Presidential race instead of going down ticket to Senate and House races.

Unknown said...

Conservatives (of whom I am one) dismayed by the misleadingly bullish headline unemployment number should focus less on the probability that the numbers were cooked, which is quite low, and more on the probability of mean reversion in the November number, which is high.

And they should really avoid associating their own credibility with that of Jack Welch, who in his own memoir offered evidence that GE routinely engaged in what in boardrooms is called “earnings management,” and out of boardrooms is called “fraud.”

Dark Avenger said...

You're a sensible conservative, the kind of people who make Hannity puke.

oc democrat said...


I thought was Crazy Sam Adelson!

Ten Bears said...

Or are they, as with ought-eight, throwing the election? And why?

Yastreblyansky said...

Surely the twitterers among them are watching Fox all the time.

I think right-wing Chicagophobia goes back to the Haymarket, and also to a time before Catholics were allowed into country clubs—like the hub of rum and romanism and rebellion. Al Capone, old Dick Daley, who single-handedly defeated Nixon against Kennedy with his armies of zombie voters in an unholy Boston-Chicago alliance. And as if that wasn't scary enough, black people winning elections. What do you get when you cross Dick Daley and the Panthers? Obama! Under the bed! Get under the covers and don't make a sound...

Original Banksta said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Original Banksta said...

Being from San Francisco, I am happy to let Chicago take some of the epithet-carrying load off our backs for a while. It's been a long annoying haul since Jeanne Kirkpatrick turned that "San Francisco Democrats" into a slur back in '84.

Anonymous said...

Jack Welch is more like New Gingrich with money: crazy, evil, been debunked countless times, but will never lose his status as one of the Very Serious People.