Free-speech-hating “liberals” too timid to get out and throw salad dressing or Oreo cookies at conservative speakers, or with chests too scrawny to try to shout down Anne Coulter in person, have found a new way to demonstrate that they wouldn’t understand irony if Wile E. Coyote dropped it on their heads: flood the Amazon reader-reviews section in an effort to drown out Kate O’Beirne’s book, Women Who Make the World Worse.
Captain Ed (Lefties Against Free Speech and Dialogue) and Michelle Malkin (The Amazon.com Cesspool) have covered the campaign to try to bring down the ratings of the book with fustian vitriol and a series of 1-star ratings. While some scorn has been directed toward Amazon for allowing such a tactic, with blame being laid at Jeff Bezos’ two lefty feet, I see Amazon’s tolerance (or encouragement) of this practice as being motivated by marketing more than politics.
The conservative response has already appeared on the page with several positive reviews of the book now on top of the queue that also take a few swipes at the previous, negative reviews. (No doubt to be countered with “Look, I’m being repressed!” reactions). Although it’s a new-age company, Amazon embraces the age old maxim, “there’s no such thing as bad publicity.” I’m certain that as displeased as Amazon execs might be with the content of the book, they’re going to be happy with the money conservatives send in to buy it … unless, of course you choose to show your support by buying it from someone else (let your conscience be your guide).
I’ll admit my headline for this post is a cheap shot (I bought it as part of a twelve-pack for a dollar at Learned Foot’s garage sale), because these “reviewers” obviously must be able to read. That doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve read the book itself; it could just mean they can read someone else’s talking points. It most certainly shows, however, that what is in the book frightens them and makes them afraid of it’s influence. Perhaps they’ve also read their C.S. Lewis: “A young man who wishes to remain a sound atheist cannot be too careful of his reading.”
Regardless, the campaign has the appearance, and all the subtlety, of a flock of ducks quacking up a storm in the hopes that you won’t notice the swan in their midst.