web analytics
October 2, 2014 / 8 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Home » InDepth » Monitor »

Blog Rules



The influence of bloggers and their weblogs, already growing by leaps and bounds thanks to such polarizing controversies as the war in Iraq and such Internet-driven phenomena as the Howard Dean presidential campaign, reached new heights in October with the Gregg Easterbrook affair.

Easterbrook, who writes on a remarkable range of subjects for an equally remarkable number of publications, was fired by ESPN (he had a regular column on the sports network’s website) for something he’d written on the website of The New Republic (TNR).

The brouhaha over Easterbrook’s allegedly anti-Semitic attack on Jewish Hollywood executives was confined almost entirely to the blogosphere, with some belated and largely ineffectual notice from a few print organs, notably the New York Times on Oct. 17 and the Los Angeles Times a day later.

Easterbrook eventually apologized for what he called his ‘poor wording,’ and his ‘Easterblogg’ column on TNR appears to have survived the deluge of criticism. But for about ten days he was vilified, in terms befitting a David Duke or a Louis Farrakhan, by several influential bloggers and the thousands of readers who left comments on their sites.

Ironically, once word spread that Easterbrook’s column had been terminated by the spineless suits at ESPN, the very bloggers who beat him to a pulp suddenly turned remorseful and decided that he wasn’t anti-Semitic after all and certainly didn’t deserve his punishment.

For the record, what Easterbrook said that so many found offensive comprised a small part of a column on the increasingly graphic violence peddled to the public by the film industry. After naming several Jewish Hollywood honchos, he wrote: “Yes, there are plenty of Christian and other Hollywood executives who worship money above all else, promoting for profit the adulation of violence. Does that make it right for Jewish executives to worship money above all else, by promoting for profit the adulation of violence?”

Easterbrook’s point about greedy and morally anesthetized movie moguls is well taken, but it was his lunge at Jewish executives - in a column that up to that point had made no mention of ethnicity or religion – that left him exposed for the flaying that followed.

(For readers interested in a thoughtful and well-written overview of the Easterbrook controversy, Steven Weiss, a contributor to the Forward and other publications, has just the article over at Jewsweek.com.)

Of course, a writer as intelligent as Easterbrook should have known that writing about Hollywood and Jews is always a risky proposition. Back in 1994, William Cash was mercilessly attacked by Jews on both sides of the Atlantic for his article in the British magazine The Spectator called ‘Kings of the Deal.’ Cash may have been a bit injudicious in some of his phraseology, but it was difficult to argue with the thrust of his piece.

Cash traced Hollywood back to its Jewish roots and argued that the industry hadn’t changed much in 60 years in terms of Jewish dominance. ‘George Steiner,’ he wrote, “once famously said that to be Jewish is to be a member of a club from which you cannot resign. In Hollywood, the most obvious examples of the Jewish Club are in the side-shows, the lawyers, talent agencies and management and production offices.”

Cash wrote rather sympathetically of how the early Jewish movie moguls strove to become part of the ruling WASP establishment and how different were the attitudes of the new generation of Hollywood Jews. It was a tough piece, one devoid of rose-colored spectacles, but from the reaction to it one would have thought it had been penned by a Nazi propagandist.

Typical was the response by media writer Neal Gabler, who wrote that Cash’s “article might be dismissed as an anti-Semitic bleat from a reactionary crackpot if it didn’t have a respectable platform.” Gabler also accused Cash of  “[i]gnoring the facts to suit his myth of Jewish control [of Hollywood].”

To Gabler, apparently, it’s anti-Semitic mythmaking to ascribe control of Hollywood to Jews – unless one does so in the safe and distant past. He is, after all, the author of the acclaimed book An Empire of Their Own: How the Jews Invented Hollywood.

About the Author: Jason Maoz is the Senior Editor of The Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Blog Rules”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Car Smashed in A-Tur 2
4 Women Survive Near Lynch on Mount of Olives
Latest Indepth Stories
Jonah and the Whale (2012) 23 x 23, bronze relief by Lynda Caspe.

God will accept repentance, even if it is mostly for ulterior motives and likely not to last.

Mostofsky-100314

if her son remained non-responsive she would place honey on his lips on Rosh Hashanah so that he might realize it was the chag.

MK Moshe-Feiglin

Soldiers at various hospitals complained that they experienced hostility from Arab hospital staff.

Keeping-Jerusalem

“We have succeeded in raising an ideological generation that loves death like our enemies love life”

There is not even a hint of recognition that Hamas deliberately fires rockets at civilian targets in Israel while storing arms and rocket launchers among its own civilians in Gaza.

No one with any sanity would dream of rationalizing or justifying the depredations perpetrated on the Arab world by ISIS.

With $2 billion on hand the Islamic State is an extremely well-funded terrorist group that may pose a major international crisis for the U.S. and the world. Learn about their rise to power and the toll they’ve taken thus far.

In the recent Gaza war and its aftermath, we saw a totally illogical reaction from the world.

A., a teacher: “I do not know a single Gazan who is pro-Hamas at the moment, except for those on its payroll.”

Is the global community clear in its response to these extremist groups?

Like our fabled character, Don Quixote, President Obama has constantly spawned his own reality.

Boroujerdi was informed that “the pressures and tortures will increase until he has been destroyed.”

Fatah: Hamas stole relief aid for Gaza and distributed it amongst its followers in mosques.

Can teenagers seriously be expected to behave properly when they are surrounded by so much suggestive material? Is it fair to expose them (and ourselves) to so much temptation and then tell them, “Just say no”?

More Articles from Jason Maoz
William Safire

“It’s a lousy column and a dishonest one,” Halberstam wrote. “So close it. Or you will end up just as shabby as Safire.”

Charles Krauthammer

Wye would be seen to have set the groundwork for the creation of a Palestinian state

These are not necessarily the best all-around biographies or studies of the individual presidents listed (though some rank right up there), but the strongest in terms of exploring presidential attitudes and policies toward Israel.

The Clintonan “engagement” liberals remember with such fondness did nothing but embolden Arafat and Hamas and Hizbullah as they witnessed Israel’s only real ally elevate process ahead of policy.

What really makes one wonder about the affinity felt by certain Jews for Grant was the welcome mat he put out for some of the country’s most pernicious anti-Semites.

With 2013 marking half a century since Kennedy’s fateful limousine ride in Dallas, the current revels are exceeding the revisionist frenzies of years past, with a seemingly endless parade of books, articles and television specials designed to assure us that, despite everything that has come to light about him since his death, JFK was a great president, or at least a very good president who would have been great had his life not been so cruelly cut short.

As someone who for the past fifteen years has been writing a column that largely focuses on the news media, I’ve read what is no doubt an altogether unhealthy number of books on the subject. Most of them were instantly forgettable while some created a brief buzz but failed to pass the test of time. And then there were those select few that merited a permanent spot on the bookshelf.

George W. Bush has been getting some positive media coverage lately, with recent polls showing him at least as popular as his successor, Barack Obama, and a big new book about the Bush presidency by New York Times chief White House correspondent Peter Baker (Days of Fire, Doubleday) portraying Bush as a much more hands-on chief executive than his detractors ever imagined.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/blog-rules/2003/11/26/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: