web analytics
May 30, 2015 / 12 Sivan, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


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. He can be contacted at jmaoz@jewishpress.com.


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.

Current Top Story
What's happened to NYC's Celebrate Israel Parade?
Israel Rejects as ‘False’ UJA Federation’s Claims about Israel Parade ‘Inclusion’
Latest Indepth Stories
Keeping-Jerusalem

For a peace treaty with the PA, half the Israeli public would agree to divide the Jerusalem

As for the president’s new, softer tone vis-à-vis Prime Minister Netanyahu and Israel, this is most likely being driven by the results of the recent Israeli election.

What especially appeals to us is his grand – some critics would say extravagant –view of what the borders of Israel should look like.

There was something else of great importance in play – something we would have liked to see him take into account before deciding to stand with the boycotters.

The establishment of Hebrew University was a cause much beloved to Einstein who in 1923, during what would be his only trip to Eretz Yisrael, delivered the university’s inaugural lecture on Har Hatzofim (Mt. Scopus) and, discussing the theory of relativity, spoke the first few sentences of his address in Hebrew.

The Golden Square wanted Germany to destroy the British and Jewish presence in their country. The Third Reich craved what was beneath the ground – oil.

Ida Nudel’s account of how the Soviets persecuted and punished her was far worse than imagined.

Swim4Sadna is an annual event benefiting Sadna, an integrative special-ed community in Gush Etzion

Prof. Wistrich, was THE foremost historian of anti-Semitism; committed spokesman & advocate of Jewry

Jewish Voices for Peace’s 2015 Haggadah is a blatant anti-Israel screed crying, “L’chayim to BDS!”

On his shloshim, I want to discuss a term I’ve heard countless times about Rav Aharon: Gedol HaDor

After obsequious claims of devotion to Israel, Obama took to criticizing Israel on peace process

Mr. Obama, Israeli voters have democratically chosen to apply Israeli sovereignty over Judea&Samaria

Netanyahu so disdains Shaked’s appointment he completely ignored her after the swearing-in ceremony

More Articles from Jason Maoz
Front-Page-051515

Some of the president’s defenders took to arguing that the overwhelming majority of German military personnel interred in Bitburg were regular Wehrmacht soldiers who died on the battlefield and likely were not involved in atrocities against civilians.

Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, both outspokenly critical of Netanyahu’s upcoming visit to Congress, were wowed by him in 2011.

Note also the response to the speech by the top Democrats in the House and Senate, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, both of whom have been outspoken in their criticism of Netanyahu’s upcoming visit.

The New York State comptroller manages the state’s $180.7 billion pension fund, audits the spending practices of all state agencies and local governments, oversees the New York State and Local Retirement System, reviews the New York State and City budgets, and approves billions in State contracts and spending.

While not all criticism of Israel stemmed from anti-Semitism, Podhoretz contends the level of animosity towards Israel rises exponentially the farther left one moved along the spectrum.

When you grow up in a home where your parents went through what my parents went through, you realize that life has to be meaningful. You have to be there for other people.

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

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.

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

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: