John Warner Profile picture
Sep 3, 2018 12 tweets 3 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
The @NewYorker does lasting and important work, but giving Steve Bannon a platform at their "festival" is terribly misguided, and rooted in a naive belief that public exposure will somehow allow Bannon to be "bested."/thread…
David Remnick is one of the great editors of our time, but he holds a Boomer-age blindspots. He thinks that his pointed questioning of Bannon will somehow expose Bannon in a way which will discredit Bannon and do him damage. It's the opposite though.
There is no terrible belief or action or prediction that David Remnick could elicit from Steve Bannon that Bannon will not only gladly admit to, but go on to expound upon. He is a white nationalist, a proud one, and exposing this only plays to Bannon's advantage.
No doubt a New Yorker festival audience will be hostile to Bannon, but this also plays to Bannon's advantage. Amongst a hostile elite, he will convey his "truths" without anger or violence and he will be de facto legitimized.
David Remnick's career as a journalist makes him believe that he will be debating or even interrogating Bannon in a way that will elicit "truth," which will discredit Bannon, but believing this to be possible is beyond naive and betrays a very poor understanding of Bannon.
Obviously, the New Yorker can do what they want, but I hope people will think twice before buying tickets and attending the Bannon event. The most appropriate response to it is for it to be ignored. It's spectacle. Enlightenment is unlikely to the point of impossible.
I'd also hope that the other participants in the New Yorker festival take the time to consider what it means for them to appear at an event which is featuring Steve Bannon and make a choice consistent with their conscience.
No matter what happens, by virtue of the invite, Bannon has won. If the New Yorker disinvites or other attendees boycott, he gets to crow about how "afraid" we are of his ideas. The solution is to not legitimize white supremacists in the first place.
Now that Bannon is invited, I think the ideal course is for other attendees to cancel and audiences to stay away from not just Bannon, but all events. Let that speak for the public's opinion on the New Yorker legitimizing Bannon.
I'm not cancelling my @NewYorker subscription, though. I really enjoy the magazine, and my guess is a significant proportion of the writers and editors have similar objections to Bannon's inclusion. This is an act of hubris on upper management's part.
Also read @rgay on this with very similar sentiments, well-expressed.
I've said it a few times #onhere, White Supremacy is on the ballot in November, and doing things like hosting Steve Bannon for a debate legitimizes White Supremacy as something other than what it is, something to be utterly rejected and defeated. There's no debate to be had.

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More from @biblioracle

Oct 7, 2018
I did some thinking about how the goal of Yale law students to make the institution more equitable may be impossible given the vectors of power and prestige.…
Dahlia Lithwick and Susan Matthews report on the inside tensions at Yale Law, how advancement means currying favor and compromising ethics.…
Lithwick and Matthews' reporting offers some fascinating insights about the kind of ethical and personal compromises navigating Yale law requires of students and the toll those compromises extract, most particularly on women.
Read 4 tweets
Sep 28, 2018
Yesterday reinforces something I think we've all suspected, no matter what happens wit Mueller, Republicans will not hold Trump accountable. To do so is to cede their own power and they're not capable of acting with such honor. They're corrupt, top to bottom.
When Flake, Murkowski, Collins vote for Kavanaugh and explain how difficult and tortured the decision was, they're simply lying. These are people incapable of acting on principle. The only recourse is for Democrats to gain power in one or both legislative branches.
Kavanaugh is an avatar for white supremacy no less than Trump. He's merely the "polite" version, the version Republicans would like to maintain ad infinitum. Dr. Blasey Ford's bravery has hopefully exposed this rot to a wider populace.
Read 4 tweets
Sep 27, 2018
This is the speech of a man who is going down and will lash out with every last bit of his entitled sorry ass. This is what a right wing hothouse flower blossoms into. Good riddance.
Cripes, he's the perfect distillation of right wing victimology wrapped up in an aging preppy package. If this guy is the best conservatives can do they are well and truly fucked.
I mean why not just get it over with and nominate Tucker Carlson next? I hope all those Yale profs who were so chuffed that another one of their own was heading to highest court are just proud as hell over what they've spawned.
Read 10 tweets
Sep 27, 2018
I'm a big fan of Michael Lewis' writing, but it's pretty transparent that when it comes to Trump stuff, this extract from his forthcoming book has one, maybe two sources, Chris Christie and Steve Bannon, and it may only be Christie.…
Lewis' has always been more storyteller than journalist, becoming a vessel to convey the individual truths of the subjects he's discussing, and the audience understands the limits, but this piece is different. It's not the Chris Christie story. It's framed as a journalistic.
Maybe I'm missing something, but my warning radar is up a little here. It's a great story, but it's the story of a particular part of the Trump campaign/transition as filtered through Chris Christie.
Read 4 tweets
Sep 27, 2018
Interesting story. Yale Law students rising up to call bullshit on the power and privilege perpetuated by their professors and institution. Is it a blip or will this bring lasting change?…
Story makes it clear this isn't just about Kavanaugh. The Yale Law students recognize that a system where advancement is tied to personal privilege, like Amy Chua taking a shine to you, should be inconsistent with the stated institutional values.
I admire the Yale Law students, but remain skeptical that this will bring about anything like lasting change. Power is the fuel of places like Yale. To cede it to others or distribute it more evenly is to dilute it and it's a risk elite institutions simply don't know how to take.
Read 6 tweets
Sep 27, 2018
Perhaps @NYTimesOpinion could explain how the highlighted passage (screenshot) from today's @BretStephensNYT column isn't deliberately misleading given the Times previous clarification about @JaneMayerNYer reporting on Ms. Ramierez's story.
The clear implication by @BretStephensNYT is that the Times reporting refutes the reporting done by @RonanFarrow and @JaneMayerNYer, but this is untrue. The Times reporting is simply incomplete. To use this as a knock against Ms. Ramierez's credibility is perpetuating a lie.
For a guy who is worried about "Gawker standards" in the same column, it's a particularly rich irony that @BretStephensNYT is relying on a clearly misleading characterization to make his case for more care and probity in journalism.
Read 4 tweets

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