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Stelter’s tweet is rather like Cain’s reply when asked where Abel was. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”

Well, Cain’s rhetorical question implies a truth: we are not our brothers’ keepers. But that was hardly the point, was it? Cain had murdered his brother. Cain used his rhetorical expression of a truth to conceal a crime. He had made himself the keeper, so the tale goes, of his brother’s corpse.

Just so, Brian Stelter — I would be tempted to call him the most witless man on television, except that he is on CNN and he is way down the line of nincompoopery — expresses a truth: one faked victimization event does not negate any other real crimes of a similar variety. But that is hardly the point, is it?

The reason we stick pols’ and journos’ noses into this foul fraud is that they fell for the hoax without questioning it — indeed, they fell all over themselves touting its cultural importance, as yet another example of their political opponents’ evil natures. When discovering that their celebrated cause was indeed a hoax — that their honored victim was a liar — they should have expressed shame, made an apology. Not a defensive excuse.

What the event revealed was that they, the major media and cultural and political elite, are themselves bigoted, racist and evil. Not their opponents.

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SarahSilverman


It may be the Age of Trump Tweets, but we can still count on the tribals of Hollywood to package hedonistic uplift as moralism. No matter how tasteless or pointless it may seem.

And from comedians? They can always pretend it is irony. Sarah Silverman, for example:

Sarah Silverman

Did Ms. Silverman say that to Harvey Weinstein?

The statement was made apropos of nothing as far as I can tell.

I know, I know: take a joke. Let it go. But I do think I understand Silverman’s shtick: say things so outrageously inappropriate the better to twist discomfort into laughter. Unfortunately, when she gets earnest-and-weird we never really know, do we? Her earnest breaches of manners and good taste seem indistinguishable from her ironic breaches of same. She can always proffer plausible deniability.

She always has cover. Her support of Bernie Sanders could have been one big jest, I suppose. It makes a kind of sense, since otherwise it was so senseless.

But during the Downfall of Harvey, it is hard not to read in some bizarre contexts to goofy-but-standard Hollywood sex-positive propaganda. And, come to think of it,* her oh-so-meta rape jape in The Aristocrats now takes on an even heavier, more disturbing tone than it seemed at first (deep) blush.

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* No, just don’t.