Nice Try, Bubs

From Ye Nuttes of Winge at Powerline:

Errors, omissions, inventions and falsehoods

A reader writes that he received the email message below sent by Professor Kenneth Stein of Emory University and the Carter Center. Professor Stein’s expertise lies in the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Our reader writes that when he was an undergraduate student at Emory in the mid-1990’s, Professor Stein was one of the most revered, respected professors on campus, and that Professor Stein had a long-standing association with the Carter Center in his capacity as an expert in Middle East politics and history. Professor Stein was in fact the first director of the Carter Center (1983-1986).

Professor Stein is apparently terminating his association with the Carter Center, solely as a result of Carter’s new book, Palestine: Peace, Not Apartheid. The reaction of Professor Stein — a formerly close associate and collaborator of Carter — to Carter’s new book is, as our reader thought it would be, of great interest to us:


From AlterNet:

Right-wing hysteria over Carter, Israel

Time’s 2004 Botch Blog of the Year, Powerline, has suggested more than once that Jimmy Carter is a traitor. Conservatives from Michelle Malkin on down applauded a nasty C-SPAN caller who slung insults at the president on-air recently, and cries of AHA! have arisen over an email from a former Carter colleague who’s breaking with him over the president’s latest book on Palestine.


The email came from Dr. Kenneth W. Stein, professor of Israel Studies at Emory University, partner of the Carter Center. It will be promoted as proof, PROOF!, that Carter’s latest book is some anti-Israel screed, to be ignored and the president castigated.

Leaving aside the fact that Stein’s departure is admittedly a hollow gesture (Many still believe that I have an active association with the Center and, act as an adviser to President Carter, neither is the case… Since I left the Center physically thirteen years ago, the Middle East program of the Center has waned as has my status as a Carter Center Fellow.) this email may more appropriately be seen as the book’s seal of approval.

Stein claims in his email that the book “is replete with factual errors, copied materials not cited, superficialities, glaring omissions, and simply invented segments,” though he declines to cite them. I don’t doubt that he’s found his differences, but those remain to be seen.

On the other hand, although Stein and Carter did coauthor a book some years ago, their approaches to the Israel/Palestine conflict have diverged markedly since then. Stein now sits on the board of editors for the Middle East Quarterly, a journal published by the fanatical fantasy-plagued neocon, Daniel Pipes, who also heads up a McCarthyite site called CampusWatch. The Middle East Forum, another associated project, boasts among its experts, neocon William Kristol and Joseph Farah, editor of rightwing yes-mag WorldNetDaily.

You know, stop me if I’m totally out of line here, but it’s almost as though every new right-wing cause célèbre, one after the next, turns out under examination to be some kind of sneaky attempt to fool people….


Comments: 11


Now that Ms. Cleo’s locked up, I hear they’re looking for psychics to give people the quality advice they deserve, you know…

I actually looked into working for one of those psychic hotlines a few years back. It was mostly a lark, but then I found out that by becoming one of Phillip Michael Thomas’s Circle of Psychic Friends, I could make around $18/hr. And this was about a decade ago.

Never actually did do it – my conscience got the better of me. But it was pretty tempting


Y’know, Gavin, you make a helluvan interesting point. The right wing, not just the pundits and policy wonks, but the administration themselves, have not had a single position that they believed they could just come out and be honest about. Going to war over WMDs, the Energy Bill (we can’t tell you who formulated that policy), the medicare drug benefit, the tax cuts, literally everything they’ve done has had to be obfuscated, misdirected or downright lied about. It’s almost as if they KNOW their policies will be bad for all but a tiny percentage of their constituency, and they know exactly how the people would react if they knew the truth. The funny thing is that approach seems to have rubbed off (heh) on their fervent supporters. Now it is de rigeur at the very least, and business as usual…



The funny thing is that approach seems to have rubbed off (heh) on their fervent supporters. Now it is de rigeur at the very least, and business as usual…

It’s a helpful development really. You can’t advocate position X in the approved style without looking like a dick.


You are like buttah! ON A ROLL!

Smiling Mortician

You know, if you squint just right you can read absolutely nothing in the Peeline piece except the names and still get the point: Professor Kenneth Stein . . . Professor Stein . . . Professor Stein . . . Professor Stein . . . Professor Stein . . . Professor Stein . . . Carter . . . Professor Stein . . . Carter . . .

Yup. Got it. So much for that whole conservative/authoritarian respect-the-office-of-the-presidency thing.


now where did i leave that whole cloth?


Bill Kristol? You mean *churchlady voice* SATAN?

I hope that bastard slow roasts on a spit for eternity and then some.

I don’t stand up and go to bat for any politician, but Jimmy Carter is the closest thing we’ve got to a respected elder statesman in this country. Which is exactly why the right wing is so quick to throw him under the bus – he’s a *B-horror pic scream* DEMOCRAT. Nobel Prize anyone?


That’s what I thought….


the Nobel committe are a bunch of limp-wristed panty waists.

Don’t they remember that Alfred Nobel invented dynamite?? They should give out awards in the spirit of his invention. Like the Nobel “Blowing shit up beyond all possibility of repair” Prize. Then George W. would finally get the acknowledgement he deserves.


Well, again, you know, the thing with the right-wing assholes, is they really, really hate people who actually are what the RWAs pretend to be.

I mean, here’s President Carter, former Naval Officer, actually educated, understands important issues and even Science!, practices his Christianity, etc.

How could they not hate him? It’s not what he says or thinks. It’s what he is.

Also, and sorta OT, is there a single neocon in the WORLD who is not on wingnut welfare? Every one I know of either has a cushy government job (which s/he has no idea how to perform), sits on the Board of Directors of some crime family disguised as a corporation and does absolutely nothing, or else is ‘working’ for a conservative ‘think tank.’

Has any neocon in the recorded history of neconservatism every held a real job? Anywere? Ever?

I’m serious.


There is an echo chamber at work here. If you do a google search and put in the names kenneth stein and President Carter you get a ton of hits that seem to all be keying off the same talking points. And they are completely dismissive and derogatory to Carter. Not to be too tin foil hat about it, but Israel closely follows what is being published in the media and has a large, well financed stable of journalists and writers it can call on to for attack those who are seen as not supportive of Israel’s aims. Some are more overt than others, but what occurs is that the vast scale of writing and uncritical support of Israel creates an alternate reality which does not admit of anything less than sycophancy. This is what is going on wrt the major part of the criticism of Carter’s book right now.


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