Friday, August 26, 2016

Sykes Stab At Shifting His Stripes Doesn't Work

By Jeff Simpson

Arthur Conan Doyle

“What you do in this world is a matter of no consequence. The question is what can you make people believe you have done.”
― Arthur Conan DoyleA Study in Scarlet
In a recent puff piece by Politico, Charlie Sykes has been given the chance to rewrite history in his career of dog whistling and flat out racism.  
Sykes’ many arguments with listeners over Donald Trump’s serial outrages have exposed in much of his audience a vein of thinking—racist, anti-constitutional, maybe even fascistic—that has shaken Sykes. It has left him questioning whether he and his colleagues in the conservative media played a role in paving the way for Trump’s surprising and unprecedented rise.
 Wonder whether Charlie and his colleagues have had anything to do with racism? Wonder no further, the answer is a resounding YES.   

The preeminent political pundit of our time Charley Pierce hits the nail on the head:

Just. Please. Shut. The. Hell. Up.Just asking that question marks Sykes as either a charlatan or a fool, and my money's on the former. Sykes knew damn well who his "allies" were when he was calling the First Lady "Mooch," or when he was calling a black man who'd died in police custody "a piece of garbage," and when he referred to "the pigs of mothers who are too lazy to put their children in a crib and roll over the top of them while sleeping on a futon on the floor."Sykes knew who his "allies" were when, as Milwaukee's Shepherd Express reported, he aired a blackface rap parody.It features a young, black woman calling herself Chapter Jackson, who acts out every racist stereotype of poor, black, single mothers that bigoted audiences find hilarious. Ms. Jackson is knee-deep in black babies in a house full of women slutted up like prostitutes while she writhes and raps that her life is a constant party paid for by taxpayers. She repeats the obscene refrain: "All you have to do is f— and nine months later you get in the big bucks."Yeah, he's known all along who his "allies" are. Once again, Trump is merely the modern Republican party without its interior monologue.
Charley P was not alone though, No More Mister Nice Blog joined the party.   NMMNB mined Sykes twitter feed where he came up with some gems like this one, where he points out that Sykes and Trump are simpatico.

But wait there is more.  Who(besides the author of the Politico puff piece) could forget this piece from the New Republic in 2014.

Sykes is credited with, among other accomplishments, having blocked public funding for needle-exchange programs and having helped drive into bankruptcy an urban mall after harping on security issues there. In April 2013, he played a clip of “It’s Free (Swipe Yo EBT),” a viral video produced by a right-wing activist in which an African American woman raps about liquor stores where one can allegedly use a food-stamp card. Returning to the same theme later in the year, Sykes declared, “The number of Americans who receive means-tested government benefits— welfare—now outnumbers those who are year-round full-time workers.” No other midsize city has this kind of sustained and energized conservative forum for discussion of local politics. 
The New Republic warned us on a National scale what was coming thanks to the Sykes of the world and yet Sykes was able to dismiss this report in his New Republic piece while being "surprised" that his listeners have actually been listening to his hate speech.  

Here at CogDis, we have been documenting Chuck's racism for quite some time now, here, here, here, here and here amongst many others.  

But Wait!!! There is more....all of the scrutinizing of Sykes PR piece this line was overlooked.  

“The elected officials in Wisconsin are all pretty much anti-Trump,” Sykes says. Nevertheless, nearly all of them endorsed Trump once he became the presumptive nominee. Sykes thinks none of them have their heart in it.
Before we rate that line, lets let the Republican Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald Train pass.....

What they came up with was less a slogan and more of a chant, based on the “Trump Train” concept. Fitzgerald vocalized it as a steam engine, with “Trump, Trump, Trump,” representing the driving wheels, followed by “Pence, Pence” as the steam whistle. Fitzgerald, who along with Governor Scott Walker and Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, was among the GOP politicians warming up the crowd for Pence, even led them in it, call-and-response style  Audio here

We rate that statement Pants on Fire!

But Wait there is even more!!

“Talk radio made itself relevant by beating up on other Republicans, vilifying other Republicans,” he says. “It fed this faux outrage machine that raised expectations unrealistically”—for instance, asking why Congress didn’t repeal Obamacare, though Obama’s veto pen made it mathematically impossible. Later, he would tell Business Insider’s Oliver Darcy that talk radio’s attack on mainstream-media bias has backfired, because its listeners now dismiss legitimate media fact-checking as untrustworthy.
 It is funny listening to Charlie discuss "Faux Outrage", when on his website Right Wisconsin, he has a "loser of the day" section.

Hypocrite much?

Charlie Sykes has a new book coming out, so he is trying to rebrand himself as a voice of reason on the right so people will buy his book.

Charlie is hoping to avoid scenes like this, which is a picture of a speech he gave on his last book.

One last point on the Sykes re-branding effort.  He and others in the party are trying to label Trump as alt-right to allow them to wash their hands of the racist, sexist, misogynist, election debacle that is coming.  Do not believe him.   The alt-right is non existent, it is absolutely representative of the current state of the Republican party.  As the great John Nichols explains:

  1. "Alt-right"? No. It's the old wrong of a Republican Party that for too long has invited vile extremists to camp under it's "big tent."
  2. "Alt-right?" Funny, Trump's backers look an awfully lot like the people who backed Romney, McCain and Bush.
  3. Anyone who thinks there is an "alt-right" has not paid attention to politics for the past 6 years. The GOP went alt-right long before Trump.

Finally, because this is too rich not to share on a Friday, it is (as the old Daily Show used to share), your Moment of Zen(straight from Judith Miller):


  1. Sykes is like the guy who murdered his parents and then threw himself on the mercy of the court because he was an orphan. Sorry Charlie, that dog don't hunt.

  2. I agree with your assessment. This is the beginning of him rebranding himself. He sees the rapid decent of right wing commentators like Rush Limbaugh and is reading the tea leaves. I feel he is making the calculation his audience is shrinking and he needs to become "moderate" or "center right" to possibly maintain or expand his listeners. Seriously, how could such a well informed talk show host not know about his listener's racist rhetoric?

    1. How could a talk show host not know about HIS OWN racist rhetoric? Especially when he and WisGOP are mapping out the strategy together.

      Hes trying to lay the groundwork for Walker and/or Ryan 2020, and tryibg to make them seem lucid and reasonable. Call it out

    2. Didnt Trump himself try something similar with the immigration thing this week?
      Hows that working out for him?

  3. Im on Congressman Glenn Grothman's email list.
    One thing I've noted is that since his initial splash on the national media with his comments about women and welfare moms is that his public statements have become remarkably tame and mostly about nothing.
    I met him on the campaign trail not long ago and he shook my hand saying, "Hi Im Glenn Grothman and I hope I can count on your vote?"
    I responded saying, "Sorry, I dont vote for sociopaths."
    Glenn looked a little vexed and said, "Well I guess you dont much for Republicans then."
    cue the crickets...

  4. Or perhaps Charlie is now prostituting himself since he has been seen so often of late on mainstream liberal media channel MSNBC. He seems to want to fit in with the big boys.