Sunday, March 10, 2019

Sherrod Brown giving lemmings a bad name?

Sherrod Brown on Meet the Press on 10 March 2019:


Well, I, I, I hear these stories that are — that’s the story of the day, about Democrats moving to the left.
I think the more-important story is how Republicans continue to move to the right. How President Trump extols
— betrays workers and utters racist, anti-Semitic rhetoric. And nobody in their party calls him out.
They don’t have divisions. They’ve all followed his racist actions and betrayal of workers.
They’ve followed it like lemmings off the cliff. That’s the story, not some degrees of differences
between and among Democrats. That’s the real story.


The myth of irrational lemming behavior arose from the 1958 Disney movie "White Wilderness." Of the staged
lemming suicide scenes, Snopes wrote:

None of what was shown in the film was realistic lemming behavior, however. Disney’s White Wilderness was filmed the Canadian province of Alberta, which is not a native habitat for lemmings and is landlocked with no outlet to the sea. The filmmakers had to import lemmings to Alberta for use in the documentary (reportedly by purchasing them from Inuit children who had caught them in other provinces); through the use of carefully controlled camera angles and tight editing, the filmmakers made no more than a few dozen lemmings look like a much larger number, placing them on turntables to create a frenzied migration effect and then herding them off a cliff and into the water (which was actually the Bow River, not an Arctic sea).
Lemmings do not periodically hurl themselves off cliffs and into the sea. Cyclical explosions in population do occasionally induce lemmings to attempt to migrate to areas of lesser population density, and when such migrations occur, some lemmings do die by falling over cliffs or drowning in lakes or rivers. These deaths are neither acts of “suicide” nor the result of compulsive unreasoning behavior, however; they’re accidental deaths resulting from lemmings’ venturing into unfamiliar territories and being crowded and pushed over dangerous ledges or venturing into the water in a quest to reach new territory.
And, quoting from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game :

Jarrell said when people learn that he works with lemmings, the mass suicide issue often comes up.

“It’s a frequent question,” he said “‘Do they really kill themselves?’ No. The answer is unequivocal, no they don’t.”


Apart from Brown's attempt to give lemmings a bad name, one notes that Ohio Republican John Kasich has been criticizing President Trump.
See for example John Kasich issued a fiery response to Trump's Oval Office address that mostly criticized the president's leadership

***As a separate matter, the interchange between Cheney and Todd:


Well, there's actually anti-Semitism that has crept into our discourse.
Look at George Soros, okay? The Republican and conservative attacks on George Soros over the years.
In fact, Kevin McCarthy had to pull one tweet that implied that he was essentially trying to buy this or buy that.
That's gotten mainstreamed in ways for years to the point where George Soros had a -- had some guy that was trying to pipe bomb him. This whataboutism, can I just tell you--


No, no, no, no.


Congresswoman, this whataboutism --


Yeah, no. I -- Whataboutism -- I’m not going to --


--that everybody tries to point to the other side--


Chuck, Chuck --


-- and it’s getting a little old.

One might question whether charges against an individual (Soros) are analogous to charges
against an entire religion.

Finally, Todd ended the show with the line "That's all I have for today."


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