Terry Krepel has a good post up on Ben Shapiro. Among other things, Shapiro has been accusing the Obama Administration of hiring a Cuban spy, even though rumors circulated by that font of Moonie rectitude, Insight, were investigated by the FBI and found to be baseless. But Shapiro has reached new fringes of the outer limits by attacking former USDA official Shirley Sherrod:
Shapiro used his July 29, 2010, column to attack Shirley Sherrod as a “Marxist” as well as a “racial separatist and quasi-shakedown artist.”…
claiming that the settlement of the class action lawsuit brought by Shirley Sherrod on behalf of African American farmers (which was done as a private citizen/activist before her hiring by the USDA)
…a scam. [in which]. According to Rep. Steve King, who I interviewed on my radio show, the vast majority of payouts under Pigford are fraudulent. In excess of 80,000 ‘black farmers’ have taken advantage of the Pigford settlement, despite the fact that during the period the lawsuit covers, there were only 16,000 black farmers in the entire country.
According to Krepel, the 16,000 figure is actually the number of people who won the class action lawsuit. The 80,000 figure is how many people later applied for redress of historical discrimination, many of whom will be determined to be ineligible. The total number of African American farmers in the affected period was far greater. In 30 seconds on the Google machine one may establish that there were 926,000 African American farms in 1920, and half a million in 1950, but that this declined to 185,000 in 1969. In the period covered by the first settlement, there were roughly 60,000 African American farmers at the start of the period and 18,000 at the end of it. Indeed, according to the Congressional Research Service, there were many more farms, with 32,000 surviving into 2007. And, of course, farmers might have filed for more than one loan. CRS has the history of Pigford, and Congressman King–if he made the inflammatory and baseless statements ascribed to him by Shapiro–should be given a ticket back to Iowa.
What makes this notable is that Ben Shapiro, according to Krepel, “at age 17, he became the youngest syndicated columnist in America. In between, he wrote a couple of books and graduated from Harvard Law School.” (undergraduate, UCLA) The books are, Primetime Propaganda: The True Hollywood Story of How the Left Took Over Your TV (Broadside Books; a HarperCollins imprint) and Brainwashed: How Universities Indoctrinate America’s Youth (Thomas Nelson, a “Christian” publisher). Why would any publisher, much less one that claimed to represent Jesus Christ, publish the work of someone who can’t be bothered to spend sixty seconds on Google before spreading libels and hatred?
And why are our elite colleges and law schools graduating people who simply can’t tell the truth from a lie? If this is what our country has to offer the world, it deserves to fall from grace.