New York's Jonathan Chait has a smart piece Friday pointing out recent attempts to create scandal from both the left and the right as good examples of "pseudo-outrage or "outrage that nobody in the political industry actually feels. It’s not an exaggerated form of anger, it’s a pure creation."
Chait points, for example, to the scandal Democrats are creating over RNC Chair Reince Priebus's comments about the Republican "war on women" in which Priebus said, "If the Democrats said we had a war on caterpillars, and mainstream media outlet talked about the fact that Republicans have a war on caterpillars, then we have problems with caterpillars." The Obama campaign quickly suggested he was comparing women to caterpillars, but, Chait writes:
... it’s not a “comparison,” it’s an analogy. Nobody was comparing women to caterpillars. He is merely asserting that his party is not waging a “war on women” — which, merits aside, is not an inherently offensive thing to argue — and using an analogy to make this case. [Obama deputy campaign manager] Stephanie Cutter understands this perfectly well. Her calculation is that some segment of the Democratic base will not understand it and can be gulled into intensifying its support for the party on the basis of that misunderstanding.
Of course, Chait also has ecamples of this "pseudo-outrage" coming from the Right. We encourage you to check it out at New York.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.