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(Think Progress)   President Bush denied JK Rowling Medal of Freedom because her books promoted witchcraft; reading books right side up   (thinkprogress.org) divider line 669
    More: Asinine, Presidential Medal of Freedom, J.K. Rowling, JK Rowling Medal, Jack Kemp, President Bush, Matt Latimer, Harry Potter, witchcraft  
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20036 clicks; posted to Main » on 28 Sep 2009 at 12:31 AM (5 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2009-09-28 01:01:15 AM  
I thought republicans were only interested in burning books.
 
2009-09-28 01:01:41 AM  
Standard Deviant: How in the world was she even considered for this Medal? Why not Michael Crighton or Dan Brown? Why? If witchcraft was the only reason she didn't get the medal, this medal is only slightly more valuable than my fantasy football league trophy.

The more I hear about these inside accounts from former Bush speechwriter Matt Latimer, the more it sounds like the guy is just pulling everyone's chain.
 
2009-09-28 01:01:46 AM  
Barakku: Huh. Despite doing it for the wrong reason, Bush does the right thing.

Barakku put it best.
 
2009-09-28 01:02:17 AM  
I suspect the fact that she's British has much more to do with it.
 
2009-09-28 01:02:17 AM  
MIU: Have you actually read any of them?

No, I don't want to ruin the movies.

/was just kidding on #3
//don't worry, my sarcasm detector has also been blown in the past year
///but in what world does she honestly deserve the Medal of Freedom
 
2009-09-28 01:02:46 AM  
THE BUSH WHITE HOUSE WAS CONCERNED ABOUT WITCHCRAFT.

I think that sums the entire eight years up for me.
 
2009-09-28 01:03:10 AM  
Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.
 
2009-09-28 01:03:17 AM  
Standard Deviant: or Dan Brown?

pshaw! really??
 
2009-09-28 01:03:43 AM  
HeartBurnKid: I've got a mind to send a copy of this to Bush's ranch:

I see your copy of Equal Rites and raise it with my copy of Wicked.

Or heck, if Dubya really wants an example of books that promote the Occult, why not Alan Moore's Promethea?

/No, Dubya can't have my copies of Promethea 1-5.
 
2009-09-28 01:04:05 AM  
Uhm...Witchcraft is imaginary, she wrote fiction. Just because the bible considered science witchcraft doesn't make "witchcraft" an actual "thing".

President Bush, I'm still finding reasons to be disappointed in you.


Also +1 subby
 
2009-09-28 01:04:05 AM  
WhyteRaven74: And in 2007 he gave it to Harper Lee.

Has she done anything besides write one book? The book is good, what little I recall, I just don't believe I have heard the name Harper Lee elsewhere. Rather odd.
 
2009-09-28 01:04:14 AM  
TheLittleLemon: The Harry Potter series doesn't promote witchcraft any more than Vonnegut promoted tap-dancing and farting as a means of communication. The fact that she was denied the honor isn't the problem so much as WHY she was denied.

Dude... seriously, of all of the crappy things Bush did during his lifetime, I think this is pretty low on the give-a-shiat list. This is no surprise considering his absurdly faux-devout attitude toward religion.
Hell, I'd be very interested to hear details about the decision-making processes in other administrations, and I assume you'd find things that are similarly absurd (I'd imagine a lot of "well he donated to my opponent during a particular race, so I won't give him the award" or "he's a different color/religion" and so on).

And again, snubbing Ted Kennedy (a deserving man) because of his political affiliation is a far bigger tragedy than this. Unless this nation is going to rise up and smash the ultra ignorant religious zealots, we're going to deal with crazy fundie asswads for a long time.
 
2009-09-28 01:04:16 AM  
MilesTeg: Idiot or not, at least he didn't F things up much as the current idiot.

www.teufelaffe.com
 
2009-09-28 01:04:30 AM  
Bunnyhat: Yea, it's a popular book series, but she isn't from the USA

Neither were the PMs of Britain and Australia, or Alvaro Uribe.
 
2009-09-28 01:04:31 AM  
SomebodyElsesShoes: Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.

You're right. I say we give the next set of medals of freedom to Chuck Norris, Sarah Palin, Kirk Cameron, and Joe the Plumber!
 
2009-09-28 01:06:07 AM  
puffy999 [TotalFark] Quote 2009-09-28 12:34:50 AM
Why the hell would she deserve this award, anyway?



THERE IT IS!!!!!! The only relevant question in this entire story. And it totally escaped those mental midgets who just can't seem to shake their Bush derangement syndrome.

Clearly no meds for this and yet there are a lot of people afflicted.

What's really funny is that these people were so focused on calling someone else stupid, they went massively stupid themselves.

Ironic that is.
 
2009-09-28 01:06:28 AM  
Coco LaFemme: On one hand, we know Dubya is an idiot so this isn't news. On the other.....it's just showing another layer of his idiocy. A veritable onion of fail, if you will.

It's good to know all the various layers. That way we know more about what to watch for next time.
 
2009-09-28 01:06:31 AM  
12349876: SomebodyElsesShoes: Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.

You're right. I say we give the next set of medals of freedom to Chuck Norris, Sarah Palin, Kirk Cameron, and Joe the Plumber!


So in your world there is direct equivalence between those people and JK Rowling?
 
2009-09-28 01:07:05 AM  
Lane83: Neither were the PMs of Britain and Australia

How do you know? Ever seen their birth certificates?

SomebodyElsesShoes: Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.

I find your lack of not deriding "Harry Potter and the Horrible Latin" quite sad.
 
2009-09-28 01:07:14 AM  
Bush did it just to piss you off! And it worked. You libs are so easy.
 
2009-09-28 01:07:23 AM  
libbynomore2: THERE IT IS!!!!!! The only relevant question in this entire story. And it totally escaped those mental midgets who just can't seem to shake their Bush derangement syndrome.

There are legitimate reasons to do things and dumbass reasons to do things. Thinking Harry Potter is witchcraft is a dumbass reason.
 
2009-09-28 01:07:25 AM  
So...does she weigh the same as a duck?
 
2009-09-28 01:07:26 AM  
And it seems that two separate points are being argued.

I do not see anyone suggesting this was an intelligent decision (if true that witchcraft was THE reason for dismissing her as a candidate, and not an off-the-cuff remark Bush made one night).
 
2009-09-28 01:08:12 AM  
WhyteRaven74 Quote 2009-09-28 01:00:20 AM
SirEattonHogg: But why the hell would a British author of some children's books be eligible for the Medal of Freedom anyways?

Anyone is eligible for it. The Presidential Medal of Freedom can be bestowed to pretty well anyone for any good reason. The President alone decides when someone deserves one.

BTW in 2004 Bush gave the Medal of Freedom to Estee Lauder. And in 2007 he gave it to Harper Lee.


Foreigners can get the medal. I see that. My point was that JK Rowling isn't really that great of a candidate for the medal. This is not to say that in the past, Bush or other presidents didn't pick equally or less meritorious persons to receive the award.

SomebodyElsesShoes
I thought the point was that if someone suggested giving her the award, and you said 'No, her book promote witchcraft,' Then you are an idiot. If you said 'No, give it to X,' thats different.


I don't disagree. It is a stupid reason. The other issue that came up was why was JK Rowling considered a possible recipient in the first place.
 
2009-09-28 01:08:44 AM  
SomebodyElsesShoes: 12349876: SomebodyElsesShoes: Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.

You're right. I say we give the next set of medals of freedom to Chuck Norris, Sarah Palin, Kirk Cameron, and Joe the Plumber!

So in your world there is direct equivalence between those people and JK Rowling?


I thought you were complaining about the award in general being elitist and was making a joke.
 
2009-09-28 01:08:50 AM  
howdoibegin: Bunnyhat: Why should Rowling get a Medal of Freedom?

Yea, it's a popular book series, but she isn't from the USA.

And you want to teach history. That's icing on the cake.


I just looked at all the recipients of the Medal of Freedom for their works in Literature. All of them were from the USA but for one that was born in France, but moved to the USA when he was 12 years old.

So history is on my side. Yes, she wrote a popular book series, but it had nothing what so ever to do with the USA.
 
2009-09-28 01:08:56 AM  
We should just be happy he didn't award himself one. And, if Rowling and witchcraft are so great, why hasn't Obama given her a medal of freedom?
 
2009-09-28 01:09:04 AM  
user1001 - Is it really that common to give out the PMoF to non US citizens?

/Not trolling, actual question.


There's been a handful.
Link (new window)

HeartBurnKid - I've got a mind to send a copy of this to Bush's ranch:

Better still - send a copy of "Small Gods!" That one takes a swipe at dogma.

As for hating on Rowling, she's encouraged kids (and some adults) around the world to pick up some pretty thick books and read them willingly. That puts her on the side of the angels as far as I'm concerned. As for lawsuits, I think that's more her lawyers' doing than hers. It's their job to protect her intellectual property.
 
2009-09-28 01:09:25 AM  
Mainrodax: Please people, please try to defend this dumbass

I'm for awarding it due to her success in getting people to read that otherwise would not have.

I am, however, against her being awarded it because of a failure to get people to read anything other than her books. People would read Harry Potter and then just stop reading books again. Had she been more successful in opening people up to reading books in general, then yes, I award it. As it stands, can't do it.
 
2009-09-28 01:09:48 AM  
Ahhh, libbynomore2, desperately changing the subject from Bush doing something incredibly moronic, and trying to shift the embarrassment onto those pointing it out. Otherwise known as rational human beings.

(Insert random thing) derangement syndrome.
 
2009-09-28 01:09:58 AM  
SockMonkeyHolocaust: Kids don't magically move on to the Anabasis after reading fantasy dreck and most people lack the ability to guide their child's reading habits to anything more challenging.

So no one who reads something simplistic like Dr. Seuss can ever move on to something more advanced? seriously? that's your argument?
 
2009-09-28 01:10:18 AM  
Lane83: Bunnyhat: Yea, it's a popular book series, but she isn't from the USA

Neither were the PMs of Britain and Australia, or Alvaro Uribe.



There's a bit of difference between foreign leaders of countries and some book author.
 
2009-09-28 01:10:25 AM  
puffy999: TheLittleLemon: The Harry Potter series doesn't promote witchcraft any more than Vonnegut promoted tap-dancing and farting as a means of communication. The fact that she was denied the honor isn't the problem so much as WHY she was denied.

Dude... seriously, of all of the crappy things Bush did during his lifetime, I think this is pretty low on the give-a-shiat list. This is no surprise considering his absurdly faux-devout attitude toward religion.
Hell, I'd be very interested to hear details about the decision-making processes in other administrations, and I assume you'd find things that are similarly absurd (I'd imagine a lot of "well he donated to my opponent during a particular race, so I won't give him the award" or "he's a different color/religion" and so on).

And again, snubbing Ted Kennedy (a deserving man) because of his political affiliation is a far bigger tragedy than this. Unless this nation is going to rise up and smash the ultra ignorant religious zealots, we're going to deal with crazy fundie asswads for a long time.


Valid, this is not that important. Its just disconcerting to see how far down the rabbit hole of religious insanity our Commander in Chief was. And yes, I know that manifested itself in far worse ways. The witchcraft thing is just especially ridiculous.

Also, um, am not a dude.
 
2009-09-28 01:10:27 AM  
gothelder: Bush has the One Ring. Frodo has failed. (new window)

/ Phil is not that clever, but the pic is sorta funny
.



Are you such a complete dork that you are trying to prove that pic has had massive internet play?

Why do you think I picked it? Everyone on FARK has seen it.


I read your posts and I hear Comic Book Guy

t0.gstatic.com
 
2009-09-28 01:10:43 AM  
TimonC346: user1001: Is it really that common to give out the PMoF to non US citizens?

/Not trolling, actual question.

Read article--it went to Tony Blair and the Australian Prime Minister.


The John Howard one really cracked me up, "Thanks for kissing my ass, here's a medal!"

It was one of the (many I suppose) factors that cost him the election in Australia. The other main factor was being a douchebag of course, but being butt buddies with a despised US President certainly didn't help his case.
 
2009-09-28 01:10:45 AM  
SomebodyElsesShoes: 12349876: SomebodyElsesShoes: Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.

You're right. I say we give the next set of medals of freedom to Chuck Norris, Sarah Palin, Kirk Cameron, and Joe the Plumber!

So in your world there is direct equivalence between those people and JK Rowling?


If Obama gave the Medal of Freedom to Chuck Norris, that would be the greatest in real life troll ever.
 
2009-09-28 01:11:02 AM  
12349876: SomebodyElsesShoes: 12349876: SomebodyElsesShoes: Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.

You're right. I say we give the next set of medals of freedom to Chuck Norris, Sarah Palin, Kirk Cameron, and Joe the Plumber!

So in your world there is direct equivalence between those people and JK Rowling?

I thought you were complaining about the award in general being elitist and was making a joke.


No sorry, I was complaining about those who think Rowling shouldnt get the award because she isnt Pablo Neruda or whatever.
 
2009-09-28 01:11:29 AM  
Bunnyhat: So history is on my side. Yes, she wrote a popular book series, but it had nothing what so ever to do with the USA.

No single author has gotten young people excited about reading for many decades. Not sure if that's enough for the award, but it is significant.
 
2009-09-28 01:11:44 AM  
SomebodyElsesShoes: So in your world there is direct equivalence between those people and JK Rowling?

Chuck Norris sparked interest in exercise (...this one was for the sake of consistency), Sarah Palin had the everyman acknowledging politics, and Kirm Camerona renewed the fervor about a myriad of scientific subjects he somehow condenses down to be evolution, just as J.K. Rowling inspired many children to read.

Unfortunately, this is about the same as studying anatomy via stabbing; the world is probably made a little worse.
 
2009-09-28 01:11:49 AM  
ukexpat: So...does she weigh the same as a duck?

Can we build a bridge out of her?

Also, does this mean that the Twilight series actually promotes Vampirism as well?
 
2009-09-28 01:11:49 AM  
More liberal bullshiat. Yes, we're supposed to believe every word written by disaffected members of a former administration. I recall quite a few outrageous accusations against Clinton by Secret Service agents, etc.
 
2009-09-28 01:12:28 AM  
I'm not sure why anyone would give a rat's ass about this. Uhh, Bush ain't the POTUS no more girls. You might want to focus this energy on the current POTUS--you know, the guy leading America to financial ruin? Remember him?

Also, FWIW--The article clearly states that it was (conveniently unamed) "administration officials" that rejected this--NOT BUSH. But hey, don't let facts get in your way. Take the word of some peon in the White House that most likely never even met the President personally for Christ's sake, let alone was present when this was being discussed even.

Just when I think I've seen the most pathetic attempt by libs to go after an EX-President, along comes something like this that becomes the new milestone of stupidity. Grow the fark up already.
 
2009-09-28 01:12:30 AM  
12349876: Bunnyhat: So history is on my side. Yes, she wrote a popular book series, but it had nothing what so ever to do with the USA.

No single author has gotten so many young people excited about reading for many decades. Not sure if that's enough for the award, but it is significant.


/gotta fix myself
//feeling stupid
 
2009-09-28 01:12:38 AM  
Ideolouges are impractical theorists.
 
2009-09-28 01:12:50 AM  
I make things with my hands: Bush did it just to piss you off! And it worked. You libs are so easy.

Bush threads are a dying breed... Soon there will be complete silence. But his memory will remain:

WORST PRESIDENT EVAR!!
 
2009-09-28 01:13:07 AM  
Vangor:
I find your lack of not deriding "Harry Potter and the Horrible Latin" quite sad.


I read that 10 times and still cant figure out if did or didnt do something that I was or wasnt supposed to have done.

As Dostoyevsky said: "Being at a loss to resolve these questions, I'm resolved to leave them without resolution."
 
2009-09-28 01:13:23 AM  
I can't understand why people call him President Bush any longer. He's not president, nor is Clinton, Bush #1, Reagan or anyone before him.
 
2009-09-28 01:13:41 AM  
Lane83 [TotalFark] Quote 2009-09-28 01:04:30 AM
Bunnyhat: Yea, it's a popular book series, but she isn't from the USA

Neither were the PMs of Britain and Australia, or Alvaro Uribe.


But, I think the point is... there are probably more qualified US authors and it is a US award. Awards have been given to foreigners, but often it seems ( but not always) to heads of state.

And frankly, if we are going to give an award to a british author, how about to George Orwell or J.R.R. Tolkien posthumously.
 
2009-09-28 01:14:12 AM  
SomebodyElsesShoes: Frankly I find the elitism in this thread kind of sad.

I don't know about sad, but predictable and amusing both come to mind. Anyone who laments the low literary value of Harry Potter, and then, willingly, and without a shred of irony, suggests that something like The Daring Adventures of Alex Cross is what these miserable children should aspire to, if they ever hope to form the capacity to reason is....well...in this case, just being a pathetic douche, quite true to form.
 
2009-09-28 01:14:23 AM  
Every time Obama does something I don't like, I just think of Bush and remember it could be worse.
 
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