Always-at-war-with-Eastasia Dep’t

Is it ironic that a Saudi prince is the second-biggest shareholder in the Muslim-baiting Murdoch empire? Not really.

Sam Gustin finds irony in the fact that the Rupert Murdoch propaganda empire, which has done so much to stir up anti-Muslim hatred over Cordoba House, has a Saudi prince as its second-largest shareholder.

There may be irony from the Fox News viewpoint, but there’s no reason to think that opposition to the project is personally offensive to Prince Alwaleed bin Talal. Wahhabis have always hated Sufis, and of course nothing could be more foreign to Saudi Arabian values than the notion that minority religions have rights that the religious majority needs to consider.

Footnote Still, it’s amusing to imagine how much fun Fox News, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Pam Geller, et al. would be having if it turned out that CBS News was partly Saudi-owned. Some politician getting a hard time from a Fox reporter should try answering, “Did Prince Alwaleed approve that question?”

Personally, while I’m (barely) willing to believe that the Bush and Obama administrations were wise to accept the Saudi change of posture after 9/11, I’m not entirely willing to forget that the House of Saud – unlike, for example, Imam Rauf or Saddam Hussein – was in fact complicit in the mass murder that happened on September 11, 2001.

Update A commenter points out, correctly, that a charity controlled by Prince Alwaleed actually gave money to Cordoba House. As Pam Geller has no doubt said more than once, “Them A-rabs is tricky.”

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact:

6 thoughts on “Always-at-war-with-Eastasia Dep’t”

  1. Sorry Mark, but you're wrong. You need to see yesterday's Daily Show. The Kingdom Fund gave money to Cordoba House apparently and Fox, well at least Dan Senor, is using that to tie Cordoba House to Saudi extremists.

  2. Jon Stewart powerfully drives home the inescapable truth about Fox News' behavior: they have to be either stupid or evil, there is no other choice. I would say this is equally true about the behavior of almost all the Republican Party, certainly of all their leadership, since virtually the start of Obama's presidency: stupid or evil, or both. We need more people in the public eye willing to come out and bluntly, simply, say this.

  3. And yet who's willing to bet that this story, like the infinite number before it, will simply fade into last week's news cycle. The drum beat will continue, the mindless viewers continuing to lap it all up and drive further policy wreckage.

    At this point I'm skeptical there's any antidote to their powerful formula, outside a mass shift in public perceptions. Which I will play little part in because I have no republican friends…

Comments are closed.