Just as Fox News attacked President Obama to deflect from Chris Christie's Bridgegate, Megyn Kelly tonight used the controversy over Ted Nugent to malign liberals in general – and President Obama and Bill Maher in particular. However, the deflection was just as ridiculous.
In case you missed it, gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott (R-TX) has been under fire for campaigning with Nugent after he called President Obama “a Chicago, communist- raised, communist-educated, communist-nurtured, subhuman mongrel.” Abbott’s opponent, Democrat Wendy Davis, has used Nugent’s words to fundraise as Abbott ducks reporters’ questions on the subject.
As we previously reported, Fox has done a lot of ignoring the issue.
Kelly and her guest, Bernard Goldberg, deserve some credit here. Kelly for unequivocally denouncing Nugent’s disgusting rhetoric. Goldberg for calling out conservatives and the conservative media for giving Nugent a pass.
Judging from her tone and focus, I suspect that the decision to bring Obama into the Nugent mess was more of a nod to her superiors than Kelly’s own view. But her mouth uttered the words.
The false equivalence between Nugent and Maher, Abbott and Obama
Kelly appropriately noted that Nugent only “sort of” apologized. She also pointed out that the controversy is really about Abbott’s decision to campaign with him. However, in her introduction, she “asked,” “Is there a double standard when it comes to the outrage over Nugent’s comments?”
Of course, Goldberg thought so. He cited liberals for “play(ing) down” Bill Maher calling Sarah Palin the c-word. But there’s really no comparison between Maher’s utterance and Nugent’s long record of violent, sexist and racist rhetoric about Obama and Hillary Clinton. Even more to the point, no Democrat asked Maher to campaign with them that I know of.
So it struck me as more than a little convenient for Goldberg to lump Nugent in with Maher and then declare, “On moral outrage, neither side has an ounce of credibility as far as I’m concerned.”
But Kelly nailed it, as far as I’m concerned, when she said, “I think the story here – because Ted Nugent has said so many, I mean completely outrageous things. It’s not only like borderline, it’s so far over the line things that it’s almost like, ‘Oh, he did it again.’ The story is about politicians who choose to campaign with him, in this case Greg Abbott.”
She also announced that she has unsuccessfully tried to get Abbott to come on her show “so we can question him about why he thought that was an OK thing to do.” I’d like to believe that’s what she really meant, as opposed to a lapdog interview where she could help rehab his image.
Regardless, Kelly immediately moved away from questions about Abbott to liken him to Obama. She asked, “But is it fair game to go after Mr. Abbott as we talked about President Obama and his willingness to take money through his Super Pac from Bill Maher, who called Sarah Palin a C-word?”
“Perfect example on both sides,” Goldberg said, further perpetuating the myth of equivalence. As if taking Super Pac money, after one contributor has made one offensive comment, is the same as campaigning with a guy with a long record of comments that even Kelly described as “so far over the line.”
However, once Goldberg established his anti-liberal bona fides, he did a fine job of calling out Nugent, Abbott and conservatives.
(Abbott’s) campaigning with Nugent who made these comments. He’s not condemning Ted Nugent.
…These conservatives who have these family values and are so concerned about civility and decency – let me tell you something else Ted Nugent once said, and feel free to bleep anything you want. …He’s on stage with two machine guns, in his camouflage outfit a few years ago. And he says, “Obama, he’s a piece of crap,” but he didn’t use the word crap. Then he says, “I told them to suck on my machine gun,” and then he said, “Hey, Hillary, you might want to ride one of these machine guns off into the sunset, you worthless bitch.”
And what happens after that in conservative media? Oh, they welcome Ted. “Oh, that’s Ted. He’s one of our guys.” And then they talk about family values and decency? They’re a bunch of hypocrites, too.
Kelly murmured her agreement and said, “Well put.”
Always remember: when men like Murdoch own an ENORMOUS number of media outlets, freedom of thought — that is, the foundation of democracy — is in EXTREMELY GRAVE DANGER!
When it comes to their competitors, regardless who it is, these News Corp. suits are ruthless.