I’ve never liked the New Republic. One of my close friends used to call it the ‘New Republican.’ A cheap shot sure. But I never could figure out their editorial-ideological slant. That’s why it made and makes me uncomfortable. That it why it gives me great pride to be able to skewer them along with Greg Easterbrook, their anti-Semitic senior editor for his far-fetched, botched attempt at Hollywood and Jew bashing. See Bernard Weinreb’s New York Times story, Writer Takes Jews to Task for ‘Kill Bill’.
Judge for yourself whether the following Easterbrook puerile nonsense is anti-Semitic or merely meretricious garbage:
Disney’s C.E.O., Michael Eisner, is Jewish; the chief of Miramax, Harvey Weinstein, is Jewish. 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?
Recent European history alone ought to cause Jewish executives to experience second thoughts about glorifying the killing of the helpless as a fun lifestyle choice.
If you ask me, this is both anti-Semitic and meretricious garbage.
Peter Beinart, the New Republic’s chief editor, released a mealy mouthed defense of Easterbrook which does not get nearly to the bottom of the problem.
Gregg made a mistake. He recognizes that. He’s a very valuable member of the staff. And I don’t think he’s the least bit prejudiced
It’s hard to believe that the editor of the magazine once owned by Martin Peretz needs a lesson in what constitutes prejudice. I’ve got news for you Pete, baby, this is out and out anti-Semitism. Just because Greg is a good guy (at least in your eyes) doesn’t prevent him from being an anti-Semite.
Easterbrook’s tedious response cum apology doesn’t really make things right either. He planned to apologize in his Web site column on Friday for “stumbling into a use of words that in the past people have taken as code for anti-Semitic feelings.” Let’s see–in the past people have interpreted words like his as anti-Semitic. So what are we to think today about those words? If they were anti-Semitic in the past, why wouldn’t they be anti-Semitic today? Just because Greg tells us they’re not? Come on.
Sorry, but Greg’s gotta go. I’m not a subscriber so don’t fire him for my sake. But how about the thousands of Jewish New Republic subscribers who are not going to take this lying down; not to mention all those subscribers who hate primitivism that passes for film criticism (Easterbrook was attempting to inveigh against the violence in Quentin Tarrantino’s films and Kill Bill in particular.
Oh, and a note to Bernard Weinreb, the New Republic is not ‘a liberal magazine,’ at least not in the sense that I use the word. I’d call their politics centrist Democrat. If the New Republic were a politician they’d be Joe Lieberman. Can you call him ‘liberal?’ I guess, but you’re sure stretching the meaning of the word.