LEAVE RUSHBO ALONE!
Ned Barnett, The Comedy Goldmine Known as American Thinker:
The Apology-Gotcha Game
Okay, I’m going to try and go against all my verbosity instincts and put the shorter first as if I was a real poster. Okay, here, we go… c’mon… almost there…
- Our insincere apologies being treated as the insincere backhanded apologies that they are is proof that we should never ever apologize for being reproachable lowlifes and thus doubling down is the only legitimate strategy.
Oh Bob in Himmel, that was harder than I thought it would be. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you all.
So, moving back into my comfort zone of over-long treatises, today’s offering is yet another in the long line of wingnuts rushing to the aid of Lord Rushbo the First, King among Assholes.
Cause for what would only be like the second time in his life, he’s actually facing consequences for deciding to double down on the contraceptive fail (cause something like 99% of Americans use at least one form of contraceptive protection) with a prolonged stint of attempted slut shaming.
And so he released the usual half-hearted, back-handed, and insincere apology assholes give when they’ve been caught and want to make their critiques shut up. You know the type: “I’m sorry you were offended”, “I’m sorry that this private message was released publicly”, “I’m sorry that you feel so bad about me stabbing your mom in the neck, but maybe if she wasn’t such a cunt, I wouldn’t have had to stab a bitch. What? I said I was sorry!”
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Ned, if you’d do the honors?
The “Apology-Gotcha Game” has become one of American politics’s favorite indoor sports — one that has increasingly dominated our public political discourse over the past decade. If you want to play, it helps if your cause is politically correct. In that case, the media is more likely to be on your side, which is vital because media support is essential to winning.
Here’s how the Apology-Gotcha Game is played.
That is true, there is a large group of people who constantly claim offense and use our lazy media and its desperate need for “he said, she said” narratives that make it look like “both sides are as bad” to bully American discourse.
These parasites often hide behind children, claiming their children were offended or would have been offended if what they saw wasn’t at 3 in the morning in something intended only as adults or behind religion, claiming that religion demands they be offended by public acknowledgment of something that regularly occurs in life. I’m really proud of Ned for having the ovaries to really call out his own team on that behavior because-
What? Oh, right. IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION demands this will instead be a desperate flinging of all those insincere behaviors on groups DARING to notice that the people trying to remove or prevent basic rights for them are calling them inhuman and unworthy of basic humanity. Cause who would ever get offended at being told you’re a dirty slut who should learn to keep their legs closed because you tried to be responsible and make it so abortion wasn’t your first and only line of defense against unwanted pregnancy?
The game starts when someone on the “other side” says or does something that might conceivably offend (though of course it never really does offend). Your immediate response: publicly claim mortal offense — this secures your position as a victim — and then very publicly demand a public apology. If the media becomes engaged — which is essential to your success — then the various reporters and commentators will pile on, supporting your demand, as the politically correct victim, for an apology. As long as they continue covering the “issue,” they’ll pressure the offending party until he or she caves in and issues an apology. Then the media will decide if the apology is sufficiently sincere — the media may require several rounds of apologies before these arbiters of PC finally accept it.
You play the game not because you’re offended. There is never any real offense — this is, after all, a game. You play the game because demanding an apology positions you as a sympathetic victim, and that generates press coverage; even better, securing an apology proves that you’re stronger and more powerful than your opponent.
Of course it doesn’t really offend. I mean those inhuman piles of shit aren’t real people and if they aren’t real people, they can’t be offended, QED. As such, their demonic lizard brains simply coldly calculate how best to profit over claiming outrage on supposed “dehumanizing language in support of dehumanizing arguments in support of dehumanizing legislation and public treatment”. Then their metal hearts beat once as they plan on how to win the elaborate game that is politics, seeing as how nothing really matters except how well your team plays FOOBALL! I mean, politics.
Also, joking aside, we often talk about “IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION” but wow. This is a dead on reprinting of how the right-wing tries to mimic what they see as “outrage politics” in order to try and intimidate minority groups off public culture. This is pretty much the exact formula that every parent’s group arguing that rap music, gays on television, trans people in the street need to be hidden for the good of the children goes through. Right up to blaming the other side for “beginning the game” of “insincere complaints” for complaining about meaningless things like “being blamed for 9/11″, “being equated with inhuman demons to a group notoriously rife with people who then go on to beat, drive to suicide, and kill said minority group”, and so on…
But back to the comedy.
The public isn’t aware that this is only a game, one with no real-world substance.
La la la la la! Can’t hear you! No real substance! Politics is just a game! I don’t support sociopaths who gladly want to see vast swaths of non-white, non-male, non heteronormative people die just so they don’t have to acknowledge them anymore!
I mean, seriously, he repeats this so many times, it’s pretty damn obvious the only person he’s trying to convince is hisself.
Ah, is the last remnants of your conscience speaking up and causing you grief? Maybe you should have thought of that before you started living your life only in service to the Asshole Party.
They don’t realize that no player who demands a sincere apology really expects, nor do they understand that no player believes, if he receives a public apology, that it actually reflects honest remorse.
Yeah, it’s almost like they’ve gotten so dissentized that they no longer really believe that the asshole will bother to give a sincere apology.
And when they turn out to be proven correct for the umpteenth time, by yet another asshole giving a back-handed and “you’re the real poopyheads” apology, well that just means that they don’t really believe in the honest remorse that isn’t there.
And they should feel shame about that, because free speech means that liberals are always supposed to treat our bad faith and self-serving bullshit as the good-faith and earnest things they are trying to poorly emulate the form of (like an alien trying to ape our cultural mannerisms with only TV as a guide) or else they are the Real Hitlers!
Nonetheless, the players — as well as their supporters in the media — all treat the Apology-Gotcha Game as if it is for real. Whether it’s aimed at someone who posts a politically incorrect tweet or toward some politician who makes a “Washington Gaffe” (memorably defined by Michael Kinsley as a “politician caught telling the truth”), the demand for an apology is a power play.
Though its members clearly know better, the media frequently acts as if this demand is legitimate and sincere. This is especially true when the cause — or the supposed insult — fits the media’s template.
Wah, wah, wah! When we get caught, everyone should just pretend they didn’t hear anything. Cause that’s the real earnest response. Also the media’s in on it. Everyone’s in on it. No one understands him like I do. He loves me! He loves me!
When this happens, the media willingly adds to the pressure for an apology. That was certainly the case a few weeks ago, when Planned Parenthood’s supporters vigorously demanded that the Susan G. Komen group “apologize” for refusing further grant requests from Planned Parenthood. Because it didn’t go far enough, Komen’s initial official apology fell on deaf ears — it wasn’t until a politically active conservative executive resigned her job, voluntarily eschewing her severance and retirement package, that the furor and orchestrated demand for an apology died down. This Koman/Planned Parenthood kerfuffle was a classic exercise in power-playing and score-keeping.
Um, Ned, I know that all of this is a bad faith effort to link everything the right-wing has been whining for the last 2 weeks to King Rushbo’s kerfuffle, but it doesn’t help your case when you have to stretch this bad.
Women’s groups didn’t exactly demand an “apology” from Komen Group for being easily scared into joining the right-wing crusade against women’s health providers.
More, they were calling them spineless invertebrates who didn’t deserve any more money, especially as the blowup allowed greater exposure of Komen’s little problem of using most of the money they receive to make their board of directors very rich instead of actually helping women like they claim.
I know it’s difficult for you to understand, what with being obsessed with power plays and the “Game of Politics”, but real people care about real issues. And so, an organization all about aiding women saying they were jumping on the anti-women train wasn’t exactly an “apology demanded” issue so much as a “you fucked up, Sally” issue.
Actually, that’s the problem with this whole post. When someone reveals something untoward about their character, they can’t just go “whoops, sorry I got caught” and then everyone goes on pretending they didn’t hear anything.
That’s not how human beings work, Zorquan8! I don’t care what sitcoms say!
There is nothing new about the Apology-Gotcha Game. Yet time and again, conservatives buckle under to the demands of those who are “offended” and respond to the media as if they were actually guilty of something.
That is true, whenever a conservative says something offensive, they are always quick to give a sincere and instantaneous apology, often beating the negative press and blowback and never ever deciding to double down on the fail and attack the complainers as the first, last, and in between resorts, thus making a screw-up into a power play.
I’ve always admired that about their ideology, cause if they were insecure bullies who constantly attacked their accusers until the point where they were facing genuine consequences for their actions wherein they gave an insincere apology and expected everything to just disappear and everyone to pretend they were good faith arguers, then I’d probably hate conservatives and spend hours mercilessly mocking them on humor websites.
What is amazing about this phenomenon is:
1. How many times conservatives act like the demand for an apology is sincere,
2. How many times conservatives actually deliver on the demanded apology, and
3. How many times conservatives seem surprised that even a heartfelt apology doesn’t make the problem go away.
It is amazing how:
1. How conservatives never act like a demand for an apology or complaint about behavior is sincere and how they try and create learned helplessness in critics by making it a thoroughly unpleasant and draining experience to fight the stupid,
2. How conservatives never deliver on the demanded apology unless they’re livelihood literally is on the line and
3. How many times conservatives seem surprised that their last-minute ass-saving apology that “some people couldn’t take a joke” didn’t just make the problem go away.
I mean that behavior would almost make it seem like it wasn’t just a game to the critics and there was some deeper underlying issue that this was illustrative of or something.
Nah, must be bitches making up stuff to grief good ol’ boys who were doing nothing wrong, officer.
On the other hand, when conservatives feel that they have been “offended” by something that a progressive or politically correct icon says and try to play the Apology-Gotcha Game, it’s amazing:
A. How many times offended conservatives ask for demands from liberals, thinking that an apology would actually make a difference;
B. How many times offended conservatives seem surprised that the media doesn’t join in their demand for an apology; and
C. How few times that the PC offender plays the game and actually apologizes.
It is amazing how thorough IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION is. Man, I wish professional progressive and liberal institutions were as strong back-boned as conservatives like this pretend. It’d be great if artists weren’t stripped from museums, employees weren’t instantly fired, organizations weren’t instantly defunded at the first whining letter campaign from conservatives. If fuck, they’d wait long enough to see if any of the complaints were say based in reality.
Meanwhile liberals pretty much have to bring in a 14 hour slide show showing multiple forms of proof with signed affidavits just to get to the insincere apology stage.
Oh, I’m sorry, forgot the First Amendment Rule with regards to liberals. Yes, siree Bill Cosby, that is indeed how it works, ooh, curse those underhanded liberals for failing to respond to admitted insincere complaints by conservatives only motivated by “getting back” at liberals for perceived slights. I sure hate (insert group here) for producing an apology and intention to investigate hours or days after a conservative witch hunt rather than within the nanosecond to keep up with conservative attention spans.
The most recent ill-advised example of outraged conservatives trying to play the Apology-Gotcha Game, and being disappointed when their demand for an apology is ignored, revolves around the Huffington Post columnist Larry Doyle’s “satiric” column, “The Jesus-Eating Cult of Rick Santorum.”
It should come as no surprise that neither Arianna Huffington nor former Simpsons script-writer Doyle has refused to apologize — and with the exception of Fox News, the media is largely ignoring this issue. Usually, conservatives know better than to play the Apology-Gotcha game.
Yeah, a little known and little read “liberal” columnist for the totally liberal Huffington Post actually using the humor we never seem to grasp is totally equivalent to a conservative voice so powerful that congressmen were checking in with him before votes a handful of years ago deciding to start a smear campaign against a woman who dared to get in the way of the latest right-wing obsession.
All those scalps we’ve collected in the last couple of years on trumped up and insincere outrage ginned up by poorly edited video?
Not worth mentioning because…
LEAVE RUSHBO ALONE!
Rather than trying to play the game and hoping that the problem will disappear, stand firm on principle. Don’t joke about it, don’t play along with the media, and — unless you’ve really done or said something wrong that you feel remorse for — don’t apologize. Explain the truth as you see it, batten down the hatches, and prepare to ride out the storm. You will suffer storm-damage, but if you maintain your integrity, you will survive with your honor intact, and your friends still on your side.
We will double down on the fail in the valleys. We will double down on the fail in the mountains. In the beaches and in the skies. We will double down on the fail everywhere and show those bitches what it means to fuck with us.
And then we will finally never have to care about what any of those “minority groups” think ever again.
Luckily none of them are allowed to vote.
We… uh… did remember to repeal the 15th and 19th amendments right? Right?!?
Bottom line: the Apology-Gotcha Game, generally featuring an outraged progressive victim demanding a public apology from a conservative antagonist, is nothing more than a cynical way of generating publicity and exerting power. The apology itself — or the refusal to issue an apology — is merely a way of keeping score. The only way you can lose is to cave in on your principles, ignore the truth, and hope that an insincere public apology will actually solve the problem.
Let’s face it. We’re assholes, and we really suck at apologizing, so we might as well just let our id run wild and never stoop to acknowledging the lesser beings as anything other than ants to be gleefully crushed under our heels.
What, you say, we already do that? And we only bother with our bullshit non-apologies when we are trying to desperately stave off our inevitable slide back down to obscurity following that one statement that was finally one statement too many?
Well, maybe if we never give that last desperate flailing attempt to reach air, we’ll stop drowning!
Did you ever think of that, Mr. Smartypants?
As a postscript, one final note: while many of his opponents believe that President Obama has become our “apologizer in chief,” he doesn’t play the Apology-Gotcha Game.
Oh, do tell.
Yes, how does your most obvious and glaring example of demonizing apologies and playing an actual “apology-gotcha” game not at all undermine your blatant projection and self-serving nonsense?
When he apologizes, he’s not giving in to the demands of some group he’s offended.
That’s… true… He isn’t at all abdicating the presidency and apologizing for daring to stain the President’s chair with his blackity blackness and acknowledging that from now on only Republicans are allowed to win elections.
Rather, he uses official apologies for different reasons
Oh, well, I’m very much looking forward to hearing some of these reasons and your rationale for why this isn’t just a hasty “but but, your face” style thing. I’m sure you’ve prepared a nice comprehensive list or perhaps a link to a compelling argument by someone el-
– reasons having nothing to do with the “Apology-Gotcha Game.”
You’re not even going to try are you? I know your side isn’t used to having your bad behavior have actual consequences (minor though they may be), but c’mon man, at least throw up some self-serving bullshit. Or at least pretend the counter-argument doesn’t exist. I mean, it’s not like you’re above doing that with the rest of your post.
C’mon man, have some Hack Standards!
Ned Barnett is CEO of Barnett Marketing Communications (www.barnettmarcom.com) in Las Vegas. The author of nine books and an adjunct professor at two universities, Barnett has managed strategy and media for three presidential campaigns — in South Carolina and Nevada — and in 2010, he served as communications director of both the Clark County/Las Vegas and Nevada Republican Parties. Since the mid-’70s, he has managed issues advocacy campaigns for not-for-profit employers and clients, and he is a frequent speaker and author on subjects related to such causes.
I matter damnitt. I’m a CEO, I’m a strategist, I’m in advocacy campaigns. I’m a big fish too. Sure, I’m writing a poor man’s equivalent to LEAVE BRITTNEY ALONE without the camp and charm, but I’m a big dog. Someone? Anyone?
Also, I’m NOT balding!
Bonus mango from his website*’s About page:
When it comes to PR and marcom, strategic planning and specialized non-profit services, I’ve been there, done that and got the T-Shirt. Hey, more than once, I’ve used T-Shirts as promotion tools.
Oh, oh, Ned.
I know being a consultant is all about self-promotion and sometimes you need to accentuate the positive and diminish the negative, but…
Yes, Ned, you are a special little snowflake whose meager contributions totally matter to society.
‘Shorter’ concept created by Daniel Davies and perfected by Elton Beard. Giving in to pressure to include top of post shorters is invented to me. We are aware of all Internet traditions.™
* For a given value of website. The web design looks like he had a Geocities template vomit out the most bland and generic option there was.