Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

The Emmett Till Effect – Taki’s Magazine

Posted by M. C. on August 9, 2018

by Steve Sailer

I’ve figured out a way to quantify how Establishment news organizations manipulate the contents of our minds: just track the use of tendentious phrases over the years.

Since 2016, there has been much talk of “fake news.” For example, The New York Times used the phrase “fake news” 901 times in 2017. Both sides of the political spectrum believe the other is outright making up events that never happened to promote their worldview.

That does happen…to some extent. For example, many of the most publicized hate crimes blamed on white men in recent decades have been either outright hoaxes or badly misreported.

A subtle but likely more important issue, however, is the question of which true news gets emphasized.

In 1955, Emmett Till was murdered by two white men who were quickly acquitted, making his story memorable for being one of the last examples from a long era of state-excused white-on-black civilian violence over black males hitting on white females.

In 1987, Tawana Brawley launched our present era of making up hate hoaxes against whites by claiming that the reason she got home late was because she was being gang-raped by six white policemen.

Which incident is more rationally relevant to 2018? But which does the prestige media consider more au courant?

Tracking the numbers isn’t as easy as it ought to be.

In 2012, The New York Times graciously offered a tool called Chronicle for graphing its frequency of use of words since 1851. But as I pointed out in 2016, that made it almost too easy to document the Times’ increasing obsession during the Late Obama Age Collapse with words such as “racism,” “sexism,” and “transgender.” By 2015, in the sound of the Establishment suffering a nervous breakdown, the NYT was treating “racism” as five times more newsworthy than it had in 2011.

Not long after, the Chronicle web page was disabled


What did I find? In 1980, the name “Emmett Till” did not appear in the pages of the NYT. In 1990 it showed up twice, and in 2000 four times.

From 2004 through 2012, the Times mentioned this old incident an average of nine times per year, and from 2013 to 2016 almost two dozen times per year.

Last year, “Emmett Till” appeared in 72 different Times articles. And this year is on track for 92 stories about the 63-year-old tragedy.

In contrast, the name “Tawana Brawley” might seem of slightly less antiquarian interest. The New York teen launched the modern era of antiwhite hate hoaxes in 1987, a few weeks after the publication of the late Tom Wolfe’s Bonfire of the Vanities best-seller about the “hunt for the Great White Defendant.”

The talented young race-racket activist Al Sharpton, the basis for Reverend Bacon in Bonfire, latched on to Tawana’s tall tale and turned it into a huge national brouhaha before it was utterly debunked and her half-dozen victims exonerated.

For a couple of decades, this instructive New York-area story was mentioned in the NYT (often in profiles explaining how Reverend Al had matured since his Tawana Brawley days, or occasionally in references to Wolfe’s magnum opus) about half as often as Emmett Till.

But in the 2010s, Tawana Brawley has come up in only 15 articles versus 249 mentioning Emmett Till…

No, for poor Sarah these are just random but fascinating news stories about hateful yet sexy white male rapists who can’t control their vile but arousing lusts.

Granted, Sarah’s favorite kind of news story/rape fantasy often proves disappointingly ill-founded in fact. But she has no conceptual category labeling why she is so often fooled.

Would it help her to have a better-equipped mind?

Personally, I subscribe to the motto of Faber College in Animal House: Knowledge Is Good.

Yet considering how successful young Sarah’s career at The New York Times has been without her knowing much that could cause her trouble, perhaps she knows best: Ignorance is bliss for today’s careerists.

Be seeing you








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