Editor’s note: typically when I write a Take Down piece for this website, it will revolve around a largely unknown, but laughably mendacious neoliberal Twitter user in the middle of some deplorably disingenuous meltdown or tirade of some kind; the highest profile “honoree” to show up in these take downs was author and noted Twitter meltdown artist Sady Doyle – and even then, only because she spent a half hour trying to harass me before publicly denying she’d been using bigoted attacks.
Today however, we’re going to make an exception on behalf of recently-enshrined but long-reviled Wall of Shamer, Joy-Ann Reid; who spent the better part of Friday, September 9th unsuccessfully trying to pass off the plot of a rejected Tom Clancy novel as factual news on her Twitter feed. As a result of Reid’s high profile role in the American news media and the disturbing propagation of what can only be called cold war era scaremongering in the modern, neoliberal media – this piece is really as much an examination of false media narratives as it is a savage indictment of Reid’s blatant dishonesty and arrogance.
First, we’ll talk a little bit about Reid’s meltdown, then we’ll take a look at how it fits into the larger, anti-Russian media narrative being sold to the American people on the regular these days.
As always please be reminded that although you should have no trouble understanding what I’m saying without clicking on the links I’ve provided throughout the article; your comprehension and enjoyment of the piece will almost certainly be improved by at least skimming the source material I’ve linked to. Please don’t yell at me about “sources” on social media if you can’t be bothered to click the links.
Hot to Trot-sky: Reid’s McCarthy Redux Moment
Now, before we get started I would like to take a moment to point out that Joy-Ann Reid is a rising star in the world of political television media who also happens to be a vocal, successful and highly-educated (more on this later) African American woman. This, undeniably makes her a lightning-rod of ignorant, bigoted criticism from the disturbingly large segment of “white America” that believes ending slavery was a bad thing; as well as men (and Anne Coulter) who feel awarding women the right to vote has directly lead to the decline of the American family.
Please allow me to assure you that I’m not here to discuss anything “those people” would find interesting. I’m not going to tell you that Joy-Ann is too loud, too female, too black or too aggressive to be on network television and if the truth be told; I really want to like Reid in my heart because the person she pretends to be when she’s not shoveling corporatist, pro-Democratic Party bullshit would be an important voice in our media.
Unfortunately, this is impossible because Joy-Ann Reid is a lying, embarrassingly partisan, centrist propagandist who is also either mindbogglingly fucking stupid or, more likely, believes that you are. Please take a moment to examine the Twitter screenshots I’ve compiled bellow and as you do so; keep in mind that all of these tweets come from a single, twenty-four hour period on Reid’s Twitter feed. As always I have not edited these tweets in any way, although they may appear slightly out of order for the purposes of proper presentation – I left the time stamps on most of them so you can easily reconstruct the chronological order of Joy-Ann’s tweets on your own if that matters to you for some reason:
Holy sweet mother of god! There are so many completely fucking wrong things about this ridiculously inaccurate at best (and openly, even brazenly deceitful at worst) screed, that I honestly haven’t the first damn clue where to start; Joy-Ann’s staggering fucking mendacity has seriously rendered me almost goddamn speechless here. I suppose it behooves us to start here:
No, really; officially Russia is a democracy backed by elections of questionable integrity; just as we are “officially” a democracy, backed by elections of questionable integrity. The reality is that since the fall of communism, Russia’s complex political system has drifted between oligarchy and more recently, something described by political scientist Karen Dawisha as “kleptocratic authoritarianism.” This is not to say that the Russian political system is identical to a model western capitalist democracy (but then again, neither is ours) – there are flavor differences, freedoms are far more easily suppressed in Russia and Putin’s strong, authoritarian powers allow him to get away with literal murder; but they are certainly fucking not and have not been communist in a very, very long time.
Now folks, please understand that Joy-Ann Reid is a goddamn Harvard graduate and there is literally no fucking way on earth she actually fucking believes Russia is still communist; for all of her many, many faults, Joy-Ann isn’t ignorant – she clearly just thinks you, the viewing audience are drooling, sub-human morons that will respond with the appropriate level of hate/fear when she says the words “communist Russia.”
Of course, this isn’t the only problem with Reid’s meltdown; Joy-Ann also manages to passionately decry “the media’s” refusal to keep covering Trump’s fired campaign manager and his ties to Russia through the Ukraine, claim that Trump might have major debts to Russian banks with absolutely no fucking proof whatsoever and help propagate the ludicrous goddamn idea that appearing on the Larry King Show is sinister in some undefined way because it’s broadcast on RT America – a Russian state-sponsored television station.
Unsurprisingly, Reid is far less interested in the fact Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager (who hasn’t been fired) also has ties to Russia through the Ukraine , or that multiple nations allied to the United States have state-sponsored television networks that are presumably free to interview any US political candidate without criticism, or even the numerous other Americans who have appeared on Larry King’s show without accusations of being fucking communist spies.
Personally, I’m getting a little goddamn tired of having to remind people in every single article that I do in fact, hate Donald Trump as much as the next person but for the sake of discussion, I’ll repeat it again here today; Trump is a fatuous, flatulent goddamn bigot with autocratic/fascist tendencies who is simply incapable of telling the truth and has made whatever (vastly overstated) wealth he has through nepotism, fraud and self-promotion – while abusing bankruptcy laws and bribing political officials to avoid the consequences of his illegal actions.
Despite these things however, that in no way justifies the kind of deceptive message crafting and outright fucking lying Reid is objectively engaging in on her social media feed and in her programing in general; never mind her patently absurd shout-out to Ronald fucking Reagan. Reid is most certainly not the mutherfucking arbiter of when it’s okay to lie to “dumb Americans” for their own good and as I’ve proven quite succinctly above; she doesn’t have to spew fucking bullshit like this to attack Donald Trump because he’s been hot flaming fucking garbage for over forty years now!
This brings me to my final point of serious criticism in regards to Reid’s unhinged, demonstrably false tirade against a communist Russia that doesn’t exist and it’s numerous, supposedly loyal supporters in American politics; as well as our transition away from a shit-peddling weasel like Joy-Ann and towards a larger, more important discussion about the improbable, yet highly disturbing rise of a new McCarthyism in modern American politics.
In particular I’d like to draw attention to one, notably odious tweet where she accuses Jill Stein of “taking the socialist Green Party full Putinite” before decrying the “Putin-tilting Snowdenistas” in a sentence that contains so many fantastical fucking words you won’t find in any goddamn dictionary, that I sincerely question if it qualifies as bloody English. Unfortunately, Reid’s utter disregard for using words that actually mean something as opposed to high-loaded and utterly fabricated words that are far more useful for propaganda purposes isn’t the only thing wrong with this tweet – it’s also, objectively fucking wrong:
- Jill Stein has not “lead the Green Party” to embrace Putin; this is a coordinated smear originating in the pro-Clinton media and quite frankly the entire fucking case for Stein being an “agent of Russia” is that she attended an RT press dinner and met Vladimir Putin – of course she also gave an interview in which she spoke out against militarization and criticized Russian military spending; but don’t expect the likes of Joy-Ann Reid to tell you that little detail.
- Despite being forced to seek asylum in Russia to escape indisputably draconian punishment by the hypocritical US government for valiantly blowing the whistle on domestic NSA spying, Edward Snowden isn’t pro-Putin or Russia either; he’s actually refused to cooperate with the Russian government in regards to the NSA-driven rights violations he’s helped expose in the United States and has spoken out against Putin and human rights violations in Russia on numerous occasions.
- Furthermore, Snowden is neither a politician nor a cult-leader and the word Snowdenista represents a political movement that exists pretty much entirely in Joy-Ann Reid’s twisted political fantasies; while millions of Americans truly (and rightfully) regard Edward Snowden as a hero, there is simply no group of people (activists or otherwise) unironically running around calling themselves “Snowdenistas” and I will virtually fucking guarantee you it’s not a bloody accident this made-up word, used to describe a threatening (but also fictional) political movement sounds a whole lot like the “Sandinistas” – the leftists, “terrorist” bogeymen the Reagan administration used to justify arming and supporting right wing fucking death squads in Nicaragua.
In short (and as one astute Twitter commentator succinctly demonstrated) Joy-Ann Reid is comfortable openly fucking lying on social media to paint literally bloody anyone (regardless of political beliefs) who opposes Hillary Clinton in any way as direct instruments of an authoritarian, “hostile” foreign politician; despite this activity flying in the face of all reasonable sense of journalistic ethics and while providing no evidence whatsoever to back up her dangerously incendiary fabrications. At this point, Reid is basically a mutherfucking list of 205 government employees and a senate hearing away from textbook McCarthyism and all the horrors that dark chapter in American history calls forward.
Frankly I’m trying to be fucking polite but it’s literally impossible to avoid the truth in this situation; there’s little goddamn difference between what Reid just did here and Hanoi Hannah broadcasts targeted at US GIs during the Vietnam war – this is pure, unadulterated propaganda in an extremely fucking literal sense and it absolutely should enrage you.
Modern McCarthyism & the Coming New-Old, Cold War
Terrifyingly enough however, Reid’s lapse into post-modern neoconservative fantasy land is hardly a unique phenomenon in the mainstream, ostensibly “liberal” (but truthfully quite corporate) media these days; Joy-Ann’s ridiculous hyperbole merely represents one of the more laughable attempts to ratchet up feelings of fear and hostility towards Russia in the American public consciousness by various members of the US political class.
In the 2016 Presidential Election run-up alone, we’ve already seen the Democratic Party (and it’s loyal media lapdogs) enthusiastically embrace a bizarre, CIA-driven narrative that Trump is some kind of “unwitting” Manchurian Candidate running on behalf of the evil super-villain, Vladimir Putin; despite there being very little fucking evidence whatsoever that any of this is true.
The fun hasn’t stopped there however as the supposedly liberal media and political structure have also used trumped-up fears of mysterious “Russian hackers” to attempt to deflect damning evidence of fraud, potential pay for play scandals and open attempts to rig the Democratic Primary in Hillary Clinton’s favor; going so far as to suggest that whistle-blower Julian Assange and his organization Wikileaks are also “inadvertently” working for Russia and Vladimir Putin.
If you guessed that once again these allegations are not backed up by any sort of reasonable goddamn proof, you win a “no prize” but perhaps the truest example of the Democratic political machine’s mind-blowing mendacity can be found in the fact that they have repeatedly and preemptively warned that upcoming leaked documents would probably be altered by these same, all-powerful Russian hackers to help Donald Trump win the election – again, despite the fact that none of the documents released so far have been tampered with by anyone, nobody can actually prove the leaks had anything to do with Russia and the simple truth that in ten years of existence, Wikileaks has never released a single goddamn misattributed document of any kind; indeed, nobody has actually been able to deny the veracity of any of the documents released so far.
To be perfectly fucking honest with you, there may well be no end to the benefits of blaming Russia for the pro-Clinton, political machine – this list is by no means exhaustive and recently the almost-certain to be next President of the United States was asked by a reporter from Bloomberg media if she thought the bombing attacks in New York and New Jersey were orchestrated by “the Russians” to “drive votes to Donald Trump” for fuck’s sake!
Which of course, leaves only the puzzling question of “why?” Why risk damaging personal credibility and political relationships with a fellow nuclear state when virtually all evidence proves you’re openly lying and that Russia represents a political rival, but not really an active threat to the United States of America? Is Hillary Clinton truly so arrogant that she’d be willing to risk World War III to smear her political opponents or is there more to this?
An informed observer of world affairs and American foreign policy might suggest that the pro-Clinton State Department’s ongoing plan to violently depose Bashar Assad may not sit particularly well with Syrian-ally Russia – and that all of this very public saber rattling is in fact laying the groundwork for what will be portrayed as an “inevitable” conflict with Vladimir Putin; whether directly or by proxy in places like Syria or even Iran.
Vive la révolution and destroy the running-dog, capitalist swine my Komrades – or something.
- Nina Illingworth
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