Monday, October 20, 2008

A Kulturkampf Start to the Week at Southcomm

Yesterday the Nashville Post blogger pronounced the Colin Powell endorsement of Obama as only marginally significant because 1) white people don't operate on ethnic identity; 2) white people believe that black people are so ruled; and 3) "average white people" (not to be confused with the "Average White Band") will believe that General Powell endorsed Obama because they are both black.

It is odd enough reading a writer/reporter--employed by the Southcomm Corporation--who hobnobs with Nashville's media "punditocracy" (in fact, judged by pundits to be the "best of") even referring to the "malleable elite" as if he were at an average white person's distance from them. But to watch as he totally disregards the possibility that average white people may have listened to and believed the authenticity of Colin Powell's reasons for supporting Obama, putting aside stereotypes about black identity is also strange. It was rambling, polarizing speculation absent hard data.

Today, Southcomm's other "punditocrats," the editors at the Nashville City Paper once again follow up weeks of uncritical reporting on Eric Crafton's English Only ballot initiative with another editorial opposing it. The editors (or whoever wrote it) lapse back into their Metro Council blaming mode and scold progressives for not getting out to organize opposition to the vote.

Rather than having their reporters hold Eric Crafton accountable in their stories for the $350,000-$500,000 cost of the special election, the NCP is bizarrely putting the responsibility for the cost once again on the opponents of the bill. Crafton gets off relatively criticism-free at the hands of the "malleable elite" who write the NCP editorials. I cannot help but wonder if they cut Crafton so much more slack because his culture wars make their publication fly off the racks faster. Wounding him might be like killing a golden egg-laying goose.

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