Saturday, 23 May 2015

That's the way to do it! Senator Ted Cruz knocks a left-wing reporter's questions right back at him

I caught Ted Cruz's interview after writing yesterday's post about how to respond to left-wingers who ask "When did you stop beating your wife?" questions - i.e. the standard "You're a racist, homophobe, xenophobe" play which so many right-wingers allow themselves to be snared by. The question to Cruz (about whether he has a "personal animosity" against gay Americans) is a classic of the genre. The worst possible answer would have been "No, I don't," followed by some apologetic nonsense about having gay friends or employing gay workers or actually thinking that anal sex sounds like a whole lot of fun. Cruz would have been on the back foot right from the start and viewers would have been left with the conviction that he actually wanted to see all homosexuals burn in hell.  

Instead, Senator Cruz took a leaf straight out of the Ben Shapiro playbook (see previous post, here) and attacked the questioner's motives and his sense of morality - i.e. he did to the morally preening, aspersion-casting leftie exactly what lefties invariably do to right-wingers. See? It's not that difficult! As Shapiro puts it, we on the Right must not let left-wingers "frame" us in this way - if they accuse us of being bigots, point out their own deep-seated prejudices; if they accuse us of being morally deficient, point out the contradictions and failings in their own moral stance. Tories and Ukippers take note - this is absolutely the way to handle hostile, loaded questions from what James Delingpole calls The Wankerati. Drag them off their moral high horse.

I like Bernie Goldberg, a former liberal CBS news man who eventually saw the light and wrote an excellent exposé of media bias called Bias: A CBS Insider Exposes How the Media Distort the News, published in 2001. But, here, he's wrong - absolutely wrong. The very last thing Cruz should have responded with was "Of course I have no animosity against gay Americans! Next question," because that would have begged the follow-up question, "But there are lots of Republicans - especially amongst the Christian Right - who hate gays: do you wantt hem to leave the Republican Party?" Or the reporter would have quoted something anti-gay Cruz had once said. Cruz would have been on the moral back foot instantly, desperately defending himself and his party. Which would have been dumb. And which is exactly what so many right-wing politicians do when up against the leftist bully-boys of the BBC and (to a lesser extent) Sky News.

We really must stop playing their game - we're smarter than that. 


  1. During our own recent election we had some very peculiar interviews on the BBC. The one that I thought was particularly odd was the Evan Davis, Nigel Farage interrogation. Why on earth would anyone be remotely interested in Nigel's opinions on women breast feeding in public, or even more strange, his views on the Paddington Bear film? Of course we all know what the BBC were up to; trying to show UKIP as a party of anti women bigots and I believe PB is supposed to have come over from Argentina. "It was terribly moving," a misty eyed Evan informed us. Yes I'm sure it was, but I'm not five years old so I'll have to take your word for it. But what I find unforgiveable is that there were, and still are, hundreds of people drowning in the middle of the Med' and this didn't even warrant a question.
    Perhaps they wouldn't have liked his answer but I think the viewers would have liked to hear it.

    1. Left-wingers like Evan Davis and his Newnight editor, Ian Katz, aren't interested in the truth - like all socialists, they simply want to win the argument, and will do anything to achieve victory - sophistry, word-play, rampant emotionalism, changing the terms of the debate mid-interviesw, rapidly shifting to other topics when a particular line of attack fails, moving from the particular to the general at a bewildering rate, and unpleasant ad hominem attacks are all part of their armoury. The idea that they are "asking the questions the public wants answered" is, of course, ridiculous - they're asking the questions that they believe will reveal their right-wing guest to be thoroughly wicked.

      When Newsnight is finally cancelled, I'm hoping the 50% of the population who are on the right of the political spectrum will spill from their homes and hold spontaneous street parties.