Saturday, February 06, 2021


Kurt Bardella, a Lincoln Project senior advisor and former Republican official who now publishes a country music newsletter, asks in USA Today why Republicans can't be more like the country music industry.
At the same time House Republicans were trying to figure out what to do about QAnon Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, the country music community was grappling with how to hold one of their biggest stars accountable for using the N-word....

Morgan Wallen was infamously caught on tape using an abhorrent racial slur....

With the January release of his double-album, "Dangerous," Wallen was on top of the music world, smashing streaming records and cementing his place as country music’s next bona fide superstar....

Within 24 hours, Wallen’s music and videos had been dropped by country radio, streaming platforms and CMT. The Academy of Country Music announced that it “will halt Morgan Wallen’s potential involvement and eligibility for this year’s 56th Academy of Country Music Awards cycle.” Most consequentially, his label, Big Loud Records, announced it was suspending him “indefinitely.” ...

I found myself thinking, what if House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy and the rest of the GOP stood up to Donald Trump and Marjorie Taylor Greene the same way the country music community united to hold Morgan Wallen accountable?

... because it took action, country music is not at risk of being overrun by conspiracy theorists, racists and insurrectionists. It is able to hold on to the high-ground and continue this community's efforts to promote peace, equality, equity, unity, and acceptance.

The fact that country music is doing more to hold people accountable than the Republican Party illustrates how far off-course the GOP has gone.
The Wallen incident was pretty bad:
The country star and a group of buddies had just spent a night out in Nashville. When they arrived at Morgan's home at around midnight, they were extremely loud ... honking horns and talking loudly ... loud enough to piss off neighbors. One of the neighbors began recording the antics.

As Morgan appears to stumble toward his house, he tells someone to watch over a guy in his group. He says ... "take care of this "p****-ass mother******" -- and then goes on to say, "take care of this p****-ass n*****" ... before finally heading in.
Greene, of course, is being criticized for a multitude of offensive and threatening videos, online essays, and social-media posts. But there's one simple reason why the GOP believes it can't deal with her the way country music is dealing with Morgan Wallen.

The reason is that country music isn't in a binary, zero-sum relationship with one other kind of music. Republicans rally around Greene because they believe that if she loses, Democrats -- history's greatest monsters, in their opinion -- will win.

That's not how it works in the music business. If fans reject the actions of the country music establishment, there isn't one hated kind of music -- hip-hop or K-pop or rock or dance music or alternative -- that will thrive as a result. In fact, country music will be fine. Plenty of other country stars will have healthy careers even though Wallen's career has been sidelined.

But Republicans believe that any loss of part of their voter base -- the part that admires Republicans like Marjorie Taylor Greene -- will benefit the evil Democrats. So they can't jettison her.

That's why Greene's speech on the House floor on Thursday was full of whataboutism. The QAnon movement lies? So does the manistream media! The Parkland school massacre was bad? So are the gun-free zones Democrats support!

And whataboutism will apparently be central to Donald Trump's impeachment defense.
Donald Trump’s lead impeachment attorney on Friday suggested he’ll take aim at Democrats’ own words in his arguments during the former president's Senate impeachment trial next week.

Fox News host Laura Ingraham asked Trump attorney Bruce Castor if he'll be using “dueling video” with Democrats expected to make their case that Trump incited the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection by using video clips of rioters and Trump’s rally remarks on the Ellipse.

“Will you then respond with Maxine Waters, a number of other Democrat officials not speaking out about the Antifa and other extremist rallies over the last summer?” Ingraham asked.

“I think you can count on that,” Castor said. “If my eyes look a little red to the viewers, it's because I've been looking at a lot of video.”
The country music industry doesn't have one enemy it regards as unspeakably evil and likely to benefit from any acknowledgment of a Republican's error. So it can police itself. The GOP can't.

No comments: