Friday, March 30, 2012

WHITHER BREITBARTISM? A clue may be found in a piece at Big Somethingorother by Jeffrey Scott Shapiro. It's over a month old, but Breitbart Lieutenant Lee Stranahan is pimping it, so it's apparently central to their worldview.
It’s hard for people to pinpoint exactly what it is they don’t like about President Barack Obama, but I think I can easily sum it up: his thinly veiled contempt for America, and his transparent resentment for the country he was elected to lead.
This is like a glimpse into a magical, private world -- a world where you can just assume that people don't bother to judge how the President is running the country, but instead instinctually dislike him because he hates America. (It's also, I'm guessing, a world festooned with Confederate flags and spittoons.)
You’ll often hear people say, “He just hates America.”
Not only in Shapiro's own survivalist compound, but also among the patriots he picks up on ham radio.
But try this on for size: Barack Obama may just be our first “oppositional identity” president. What’s that mean?

I’d never heard the phrase oppositional identity before because I don’t subscribe to collectivist identity theories.
Another hallmark of this psychology is the need to distance yourself from the very theory on which you're about to instruct the troops -- very much like the popular shtick whereby they insist they're only using Saul Alinsky as a model because it's the only way they can defeat Alinskyite liberals.
I believe--much like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.--that people should be recognized by their own individual actions, not those of their ancestors.
Also he's no racist, and after he and his buddies crush Obama, Shirley Sherrod, et ooga-booga alia, he's going to dance to a Temptations record.
But when I recently met a special education graduate student from Antioch University in Los Angeles and she told me about oppositional identity...
Hm -- maybe this started out as a Penthouse letter.
...I wondered whether it could help explain why President Obama harbors such apparent animosity toward his own country--and why he’s said some of the things he has in the past. So, she loaned me her textbook to write this article.
And that's where the thirst for knowledge comes from -- opposition research!

There follows a bunch of schoolly talk, which I'll spare you; you can get some idea of how seriously Shapiro takes it by this section:
Oppositional identity is a theory that is applied to classroom situations, but let’s replace the words “school,” and “education,” with “country,” and “America.”
Got that square peg hammered in nice and tight? Good. On to the double reverse Alinsky!
The question I’m getting at is this: does Barack Obama believe that adopting the fundamental values of America would be seen as surrendering to the "enemy"?
Barack Obama is the President of the United States, but identifies a member of an involuntarily minority that was forced to come to this country as slaves.
It's like Gingrich's Kenyan anti-colonialism bullshit, but even better because it's homegrown -- Obama's not pissed about some people stuck over in Africa; no, he's pissed at us honkeys just 'cause we gave his ancestors the free ride to America that allowed him to be President! What an ingrate!

Oh, but wait, there's more. Shapiro's not just a lunatic, but also a soldier in the cause, and he's willing to put his own Second Life identity on the line to prove his (newly adapted from collectivist identity theories) thesis. Ladies and gents, behold his magnificent swan-dive of reason:
To test this theory, I tried to put myself in Obama’s position the best way that I could. I am Jewish. I love America with all my heart, and to me the United States is a heroic, liberating force that saved my people from extermination during the Holocaust in WWII. 
Let’s assume however, that I was born in Germany, and somehow I became Chancellor of that country. Would I identify more with my country, which at one time systematically murdered six million of my own people--or my group--which in post-Holocaust Europe could (by Finn’s definition) be considered an “involuntary minority?”] 
That’s a difficult question to answer, but another way of asking this question is: would I still harbor suspicion about the country I now led despite the majority electing me? 
Yes--I would.
Tried and proven in the court of roleplay! If some little boy or girl out there hopes to be Germany's first Jewish Chancellor, watch out -- Jeffrey Scott Shapiro's already written Die Freiheit's campaign strategy.

UPDATE. Ah, I see the meme walks:
Something's happening to President Obama's relationship with those who are inclined not to like his policies. They are now inclined not to like him. His supporters would say, "Nothing new there," but actually I think there is...
It's Peggy Crazy Jesus Lady Noonan, in full omniscient mode. She even does dialogue!
The shift started on Jan. 20, with the mandate that agencies of the Catholic Church would have to provide services the church finds morally repugnant. The public reaction? "You're kidding me. That's not just bad judgment and a lack of civic tact, it's not even constitutional!"
And, after the Trayvon Martin story broke,
At the end of the day, the public reaction seemed to be: "Hey buddy, we don't need you to personalize what is already too dramatic, it's not about you."
Surely you, dear reader, heard such talk down at Joe's Diner, over at Mike's Bar, among the parishioners at Father Flotsky's Church Social, and in other corners of the Noonan soundstage. She makes Whit Stillman sound like Stan Mack.

Elsewhere, in the tiny radical enclave known as America, Obama's approval rating is moving up -- probably not because of anything he's done, I'm guessing, but because people are noticing that the people who oppose him are fucking nuts.

UPDATE 2. Har, Good Roger Ailes in comments: "Nooners also seems to have written Trayvon Martin's dialogue for George Zimmerman's father and brother."

Thursday, March 29, 2012

THEY LEARNED NOTHING AND FORGOT NOTHING. I don't know if you've noticed, but Megan McArdle has taken off to work on some project (my understanding is it will be called The Koch Kookbook; each dish features the meat of an animal capriciously declared "endangered" by some ecofascist regime, and will be road-tested in McArdle's culinary lab). To hold the fort she has enlisted a new crew of Kids from McArdle. What sort of kids are they? True Blue Libertarian! And what do they believe in?
If you're driving through certain West African countries, you'll be stopped every few miles by armed men--often in police uniforms--who will demand payment in exchange for letting you pass.

I have a somewhat similar experience every time I drive from my home in Philadelphia to Washington, DC. As I'm driving up Interstate 95, I'll periodically be stopped by people in uniforms (thankfully not armed) who will demand money in exchange for letting me through.
Oh Jesus. Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Tim B. Leeve in the Free Market 4Ever.
Obviously, there are important differences between these cases.
Whoa, big mainstream move.
In Africa, the roadblocks are mostly illegal and the payments are generally described as "bribes." In the United States, the practice is known as "collecting tolls" and is government-sanctioned
Just as so-called humans call health care a "right," and engage in a form of emotional commerce which they are pleased to call "love." Gawd, they're so immature.

Lee eventually tells us that "while I'm generally sympathetic to the idea of privately-managed roads, I've become convinced that the broader vision of 'free-market roads' is a conceptual confusion... the more I think about it, the less sense it makes." Good for him! But despite what could have been a life-changing insight, he can't let go of the dream -- he pores over the evidence, dazed, stricken even at what it might suggest:
A 2004 GAO survey found that four of the five privately-funded toll road projects started or completed in the preceding 15 years included non-compete clauses that restricted the creation of competing freeways nearby.
Capitalists exploiting a privatization scheme to dick the public! Who could have seen that coming? So, what have we learned?
To be clear, this isn't to say libertarians should oppose road privatization.
As I suspected.
The public has a right to freedom of movement along public roads, and this right can't be extinguished by transferring physical control of the road to a private firm. And libertarians should demand that private operators of public roads follow the same basic principles--non-discrimination, tolls not greatly exceeding the cost of building an operating the roads--that we'd apply if the government were operating those roads itself.
Demand! Preferably in a strongly-worded letter to the Chamber of Commerce, or to Reason magazine.

I remember when Mike Royko, disgusted by Roger Ebert's defense of Rupert Murdoch as a Citizen Kane type of mogul, said, "Roger's a nice guy but he thinks everything's a goddamn movie." These kids are even more misguided -- they think everything's an essay by Hayek. Movies at least are fun.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

GOLDBERG ALWAYS MAKES IT WORSE. I hate to return at all to the highly depressing topic of Trayvon Martin, but it's never over until the fat laddy sings, so Jonah Goldberg's contribution must be noted. While the rest of the rightwing Ooga Booga squad, including Goldberg's teammates at National Review, pump the theme that because Martin smoked some weed and skipped school he probably deserved to be gunned down, Goldberg, showing that his stupidity sometimes trumps his laziness, goes for the angle shot: The problem, he tells us, is rich black people.
But what if we extend Charles Murray’s argument in Coming Apart to blacks in the top 2% — like Blow, Britt and most of the other black commentators out there. It seems plausible that at least some of these people are as removed from lower class black America as many white commentators are from lower class white America.
I pause here to imagine Goldberg getting a local bag-boy to take his Bubble Quiz for him and later, when he finds out the bag boy didn't know anything about NASCAR either, bursting into the supermarket to demand his money back, and to pick up three pounds of onion dip.
In that context, I could see how the Trayvon Martin story would hit closer to home than the vastly more numerous tragedies involving black-on-black homicide. The richest and most successful African-Americans spend a lot more time in elite “white” America than they do in Compton or East St. Louis. And, my hunch is, they’re more understandably more worried about white men with guns than they are about guns in their kids’ private schools.
But if black-on-black crime is the real issue, then why are they worried about white men with guns at all? Is it because these denatured two-percenter blacks, who don't know Compton and East St. Louis as well as Goldberg knows the mean streets of Scarsdale, have lost or never acquired the mystical ability of their lesser-born brothers to face down even gun-toting white men by yelling "Shaka Zulu" or something? (And they'd have to worry about this because you never know when someone will discover they got high and skipped school, rendering them fair game for any cracker with a firearm?)

But clearly, the fact that their kids go to private school renders their arguments hypocritical; those crests they put on their jackets render them bullet-proof, and Lord knows no one ever got called a nigger who was wearing a button-down shirt.

I do know this: I've read Charles Blow's column, and judging from Goldberg's response to it he either hasn't read it or can't read at all. I am open to either possibility.
I also think it’s a lot easier for rich black liberals to have an “honest conversation” about white racism than it is for them to engage in an honest conversation about the other problems facing black America that have little to nothing to do with white racism.
Goldberg's idea of an honest conversation being the rich black liberals going "homina homina homina" while Goldberg breaks to them the shocking facts of black-on-black crime. I hope that's what it is, anyway; maybe Goldberg, emboldened by this fantasy, will wander over to Harlem and try this gambit on a random group of corner-hangers. It should increase his stock of evidence.
I don’t think this explains everything, not even close. But I do think it might be one of the factors at work.
Or: "Yeah, it's bullshit, but I haven't written much of anything for weeks and K-Lo was threatening not to restock the snack machine."  (Alternatively: Faarrrrrt.)

UPDATE. Goldberg continues making everything worse with his longer column version on Wednesday:
Weak-tea Marxist rants about a system that parasitically feeds off black men sound absurdly antiquated when that system is run, at the top, by black men (Eric Holder, let’s not forget, runs the Justice Department).
By the same token, we could say that Americans have no reason to complain about the Obama Administration, since Obama and Holder and all the rest of them are Americans. (I'm kidding, of course; conservatives don't consider Democrats Americans.)

The rest is just more shit about how black people should listen to him and Heather Mac Donald and all the other honkeys about how to fix their black crime problem, a program that begins with treating incidents like this one as a Mulligan owed to white people.

Monday, March 26, 2012

NEW VOICE COLUMN UP, about the Trayvon Martin case. Basically it's the old Ooga Booga all over again.

UPDATE. Speaking of which, it seems the racist troll from the original Ooga Booga Voice column is back for this one, using the name "Flooob" this time for some reason. Same M.O. as before: Racial slurs, professions of contempt for white non-racists and their "precious blacks," and, when he's not getting enough attention, semi-coherent skeins of abstract filth. He's like the living Id of the modern conservative movement.

Friday, March 23, 2012

NEXT! Lately I've been too busy to do much more here than reprint what some asshole said and then say, "Jesus, what an asshole." But at the rate they're going crazy, that might just be enough. At National Review, Michael Walsh:
Surely, this is the ultimate expression of the suicide cult that is the modern Left, a subset of libertine takers that so loathes itself that it will dragoon the makers into underwriting the chalices of tasty hemlock it’s so eager for everybody to quaff in order to put itself out of its misery. If, as long as it doesn’t hurt anybody — it feels good, do it! Alas, it does hurt somebody — it hurts society, by robbing it of its future and burdening those lucky kids who make it through the contraceptive/abortifacient gauntlet with an unpayable debt to the very people who tried to get rid of them.
The closest thing to a point I can get out of this is: If you have sex without having a baby, you are robbing future generations which you did nothing to create. Actually I could Shorter it "GRRRRRRR GRRRRRR grrrrrrrrr [smash] GRRRRR" without doing it an injustice.

What's wrong with these people?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

NEXT WEEK: THE MENACE OF RAINBOW PARTIES. Let's peek in at PJ Lifestyle and see what the Kulturkampfers are up to:
Once SNL took off though, the tone of network television would never be the same. If Bill Maher can call Sarah Palin a c*** with impunity, if Cee Lo Green can cheerfully sing a song titled “F*** You” at a Democratic Party fund raiser, well, the tone of the liberal overculture had to first be lowered from Leonard Bernstein on CBS’s Omnibus, Bob Hope hosting the Oscars, the swankiness of the Kennedy-era Rat Pack, and the Carson-era Tonight Show to get to that point. The original SNL was, in retrospect, one of the most powerful of the early battering rams in the New Left’s war on culture.
No, I'm not kidding, Ed Driscoll finds the invention of Saturday Night Live -- 36 years ago -- a fit subject for fist-shaking. His news hook: That a Kindle edition has recently emerged of a 26-year-old book about SNL that he read once. Word count: 3,771.

It's probably best that at PJ Lifestyle they leave contemporary subjects almost entirely alone: No hiphop, no fringe or independently distributed material, nothing anyone under the age of 40 is paying attention to. The closest they get to contemporaneity is John Boot's review of the new Springsteen album:
What [Springsteen] should not do is what he does on his latest album, which is to advocate violent revolution, class-and-politics-based bloodshed, and the murder of bankers and perhaps other capitalists.
Is it any wonder these guys think Rick Santorum is the wave of the future?

UPDATE. I should add that, over at Sadly, No!, Cerberus treats another PJ Lifestyle monstrosity -- Dr. Mrs. Ole Perfesser on how bitches run everything -- with fully deserved and richly detailed contempt.

UPDATE 2. It makes me sad sometimes, just how blind the culture warriors are to the meaning of culture itself. From a Forbes column by John Tammy:
It says here that HBO’s The Wire, which ran from 2002-2008, is the greatest television drama of all time... 
Liberals of the American variety seemed to like it for revealing how very crushing and insurmountable poverty is, conservatives perhaps liked it for televising the human error frequently behind poverty, not to mention the corruption inside media and government, and then libertarians including this writer surely enjoyed it for laying out the totally ineffective nature of the "war on drugs", and the sheer incompetence of government.
You read that and think, okay, you're halfway there -- now make the leap and recognize that ideological readings are reductive and beside the point, that there's something universal in a successful work of art that speaks not to your talking points, but to whatever's left of your soul.

Alas, the very next graf:
It’s said about The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins’ blockbuster novel that will be released in movie form this Friday, that it appeals to a broad demographic ranging from teens to senior citizens. If so, it’s fair to assume that a not insignificant portion of the book’s devotees see a political message within.
No, no...
Back to the malnourishment that pervades Panem, and underlies the story... as Bastiat long ago observed...
These people are hopeless.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

THE WHINERS' CIRCLE. Noel Sheppard of NewsBusters is outraged at Robert DeNiro's "racist" joke at an Obama fundraiser:
"Callista Gingrich. Karen Santorum. Ann Romney. Now do you really think our country is ready for a white first lady?"  De Niro asked a star-studded crowd gathered in the backroom of Locanda Verde, a restaurant he owns on Greenwich Street in TriBeCa.
Someone in the crowd shouted, "No!" as De Niro quickly added, "Too soon, right?"
"Too soon, right?"
Politico's Jennifer Epstein noted that the attendees included Beyonce, her mother Tina Knowles, Star Jones, Whoopi Goldberg, Gayle King, Angela Bassett and Ben Stiller.
They probably also think it's "too soon" for another white first lady.
Small mistake there, Noel -- Ben Stiller is white, which kind of lessens your intended effect.
But just imagine what would have happened in 2008 if this occurred at a McCain-Palin event. Or if someone at a Gingrich-Romney-Santorum fundraiser asked, "Isn't it time for a white first lady again?" 
That would have been the end of that candidate's campaign. 
But because the joke is directed at white women, it's just fine.
"The joke is directed at white women...." I guess this is their answer to the "war on women" rhetoric; in phase two, they'll spread the word that only black women want birth control pills, so if you insist they be included in your health insurance you're evincing a touch of the tar brush. Electoral gold!

PJ Tatler ups the ante:
De Niro’s comments mark the second time in a week that an Obama fundraiser has created controversy. During one of five fundraisers on Friday, singer Cee Lo Green launched into a profane song that included the F-bomb and a use of his middle finger. President Obama, who has recently called for more civility in our public discourse and was present at the Friday fundraiser, has not weighed in on either Green’s performance or De Niro’s racial comments.
It's like they live in an alternate universe, ever-watchful for any sign of humor or high spirits that can be interpreted, however tendentiously, as offensive to their people. This used to be called "political correctness" and, believe it or not, it was once associated with liberals.
SHORTER GREG PFUNDSTEIN: New Yorkers are really against abortion, as proven by the enormous number of abortions that take place in New York.
AND NOW, FOR A MORE PRINCIPLED, INTELLECTUALLY-NUANCED VERSION OF THIS BULLSHIT... Tbogg treats with appropriate contempt the latest conservative cause célèbre -- i.e., a complaisant press has memory-holed the news of Malia Obama's Mexican trip, denying patriots the information they need to drive their pick-ups (freshly festooned with "Don't Re-Nig in 2012" bumper stickers) down there and tell little Missy what a traitor her father is and show her pictures of dismembered fetuses.

All he missed was the breathless coverage at libertarian mag Reason, where Brian Doherty sees the thin end of the wedgie:
Completely divorced from the question of whether a politician's children are fair game for political attack, or even having their existence and life mentioned, this unfolding incident--stories from earlier today about Malia Obama and a gaggle of buddies spring breaking in Mexico (a place normal American kids are advised to avoid) with Secret Service protection disappearing from news sites--seems to indicate the White House can get a wide range of sites to take down stories, even if it is just with gentle persuasion or appeals to some higher standard. And that is highly unnerving.
Yeah, and what's all this Secret Service bullshit? If they was real Americans, Malia'd be packing and wouldn't need them.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: Libertarians are conservatives with social pretensions.

UPDATE. Belle of Liberty:
There’s not much danger of Malia disappearing the way Natalee [Holloway] did, although it wasn’t a really great idea to broadcast her location. But the fact that all the stories about her vacation are disappearing is an ominous sign of the future of electronic news. What if Malia had been vacationing in say, Malibu, and the White House had the Media yank the story because they didn’t want bad press – i.e., wasting taxpayers money for a 13 year-old’s holiday – just before a presidential election?
This is a beautiful specimen of a particular kind of nut-cluster: A candy-coating of pretended concern for the kid's welfare, holding together crunchy bits of crackpottery.

Monday, March 19, 2012

NEW VOICE COLUMN UP, about the Rick Santorum war on porn, which a surprising number of the brethren have characterized as Santorum turning liberal. I guess that's just how things go in the post-Liberal Fascism age -- if something seems uncomfortably authoritarian, just attribute it to those eugenics-loving Woodrow Wilson progressives and wipe the prints off the doorknobs. More interesting, maybe, is how a porn war became uncomfortably authoritarian to these guys. O tempora o mores! Poor Ed Meese is probably thinking he lived in vain.

UPDATE. In comments, zebbidie: "In future years, a future George Clooney will star in The Men Who Stare At Goatse."

Friday, March 16, 2012

YOU DIDN'T SEE NOTHIN'. Rick Santorum ups his religious-maniac cred by promising as President to pursue a war on pornography. This may be laying on the holy-roll a little thick even for Republicans, so rightbloggers have rushed to explain that the real issue is people talking about it, which violates Santorum's Constitutional right to say crazy shit and never be called on it. Allahpundit at Hot Air:
Question: Why is this suddenly coming up now? Did the media simply notice a longstanding statement on Santorum’s website about porn or is he actively circulating it, presumably to counter the meme that he’s anti-woman?
Robert Stacy McCain:
Exactly why the Daily Caller saw fit to assign its associate editor to write a 700-word “news” article, soliciting opinions from Eugene Volokh and Jonathan Turley, I don’t know. Why this cheap political “gotcha” hit-job deserved headline treatment at the Drudge Report, I don’t know.
But for intelligent people who call themselves “conservative” to fall for such a dishonest media stunt as this is ridiculous.
Pundit and Pundette:
It's aimed at the credulous folk (of left, center, and right) who, through prejudice and/or ignorance, buy the media caricatures of social conservatives and fear (or pretend to fear) what a President Santorum might do.
She talking about Santorum's own words, BTW, as something wiley rad libs are unfairly using to accurately characterize Santorum's position. What monsters!

This is basically an extension of the "Democrats are trying to distract you by bringing up our policies" bullshit conservatives have been peddling for weeks. Mention their absurd and malicious ideas about contraception and forced vaginal wanding, and they accuse you of changing the subject they were just about to bring up.

They're getting into a rhythm with it now. Expect colloquies like this:
A: In his last press conference, Mitt Romney said children living in poverty should be apprenticed to bootblacks, and be nourished only with stale bread and salt licks. Do you really support this position?
B: What about Solyndra, libtard? 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

MORE CONSERVATIVE OUTREACH TO WOMEN. Today Ole Perfesser Instapundit made fun of a homeless guy raping someone at Occupy New Haven, then claimed she was raped because an Obama speechwriter felt up a cardboard cutout of Hillary Clinton in 2008.

These days it doesn't even feel like blogging anymore -- it feels like taking field notes for some giant abnormal psychology study.

UPDATE. From comments, whetstone:
I don't think it's so much that Reynolds is crazy as much as he's the world's shittiest pro-am Lee Atwater. ("Jon Favreau is DESTINED to be Obama's Willie Horton!")
Also, gocart mozart:
So, not only do they have difficulty with the "consent" vs "no consent" dichotomy but also with the "real" woman vs "cardboard cutout" woman thing?
UPDATE 2. The Perfesser hears about some women who are threatening to pull a Lysistrata. This presents a real opportunity for comedy, but the Perfesser gets overexcited:
Reader Troy Hinrichs writes: "They can bring it on. They do realize that knuckle-dragging troglodytes like Santorum, Romney, (and me — with 3) will outbreed them thus winning in the long run right? We already are but sex strikes will help us insure victory in the long run. And by looking at a lot of the Occupy types and hard lefties it doesn’t look like there would be many men to cross that picket line..."
Looks like Brooks "Beta Males" Bayne has a soulmate. They and the Perfesser should team up and hit the road; call it the Survivalist Treehouse of Comedy Tour.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

JESUS SWEPT. I see the brethren are claiming victory in the war on contraception. Let's use Kathryn J. Lopez as an example:
And when asked, “What about for religiously affiliated employers, such as a hospital or university? Do you think their health insurance plans for all employees should have to cover the full cost of birth control for their female employees, or should they be allowed to opt out of covering that based on religious or moral objections?” 57 percent responded “Allowed to opt out.” 
That is most definitely news. 
Americans, according to the New York Times’s own polling, support the positon of the Catholic bishops on the HHS mandate.
Except religious employers already have been allowed to opt out -- because the insurers will be paying for the birth control, not them. This may be what the poll respondents think the Times is talking about. The questions might have been more specific

What certainly isn't demonstrated by this response is that respondents buy the bishops' line, which is that if anyone pays for their employees' birth control, Christ and George Washington will be crucified one on top of one another (front to back, so it looks dirty).

You'd expect rightbloggers to grab the more self-flattering interpretation, but K-Lo, wrapped pretty tight even under the best of circumstances, may be taking it a little far:
Proponents of the HHS mandate would like everyone to believe that high gas prices explain all the drop in support for Obama. But considering the president has taken a lead in defense of his coercive mandate, it’s mistaken to pretend his war on religious liberty isn’t part of his public-opinion wounds.
That's the America I remember from English dystopian fiction -- forget the economy, stupid, it's the war on religious liberty! Lopez seems to expect a holy-roller revolution to come charging over the hill, crying "Freedom of religion, not freedom of worship!" Just another reason to hope the Republicans nominate Santorum -- if they did, Lopez would probably bust out in stigmata, and start pimping a JESUS 4 VP campaign.

UPDATE. Also feelin' the surge: Old Perfesser Instapundit, who smells victory in a bunch of readers who tell him they've cancelled HBO over Game Change. No, I'm not kidding. This is the break PJTV has been waiting for! Quick, get Roger L. Simon to slap together that movie version of The Inferior Five the world has been waiting for. Jonah Goldberg was born to play Herman Cramer.

UPDATE 2. Commenter/comics dork John E. Williams is on the case:

I see there's a role for Dana Loesch. Think of the merchandising opportunities! 

UPDATE 3. They're still at it -- here's James Taranto's women-reject-contraceptives-and-Obama variation. They really seem to believe this, which may explain why their compatriots in the legislatures are pulling increasingly crazy anti-birth-control shit --
Arizona legislators have advanced an unprecedented bill that would require women who wish to have their contraception covered by their health insurance plans to prove to their employers that they are taking it to treat medical conditions. The bill also makes it easier for Arizona employers to fire a woman for using birth control to prevent pregnancy despite the employer's moral objection.
If they think this approach is such a winner, Santorum should abandon his recent quietism on the issue and begin all his campaign appearances with a pledge to overturn Griswold v. Connecticut. That should turn the tide in his favor soon enough, and give those of us who aren't insane time to get our passports renewed.

"$1 ABORTIONS IN OBAMACARE." Here's a little something I wrote for DecisionHealth about the latest anti-Obamacare talking point. It's fascinating how these things work; I wonder how long it will take for this one to become a full-fledged talking point, regularly tossed off on Sunday morning talk shows while everyone nods gravely.

Monday, March 12, 2012

NEW VOICE COLUMN UP, about the new breed of Breitbart acolytes and their early forays into belligerent table-overturning. So far they suck.

I interviewed Breitbart once. I respected his success as I might have respected that of Benito Mussolini -- that is, without approving in the slightest, though giving him points for exposing the stupidity and venality of the human race (as demonstrated by his own followers and by the "Main Stream" press who indulged his racket out of sheer gutlessness).

The dopes picking up after him are just as evil, but nowhere near as grand.

UPDATE. I should add that while Breitbart probably thought he was doing the Lord's work, the media manipulation business he was in is a blight on humanity. It's propaganda, and propaganda is not designed to enlighten, no matter how loudly the propagandist insists on his devotion to truth, but to cloud the minds of men.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

The Koch Brothers are rich but they can't be handing out the big, big paychecks to every Tom, Dick, and Harry who arrives at the shape-up flexing his thumbs in prep for some X-teme political texting. So most of the dummies are paid in esprit de corps. They're set to churning out high-fives for a ridiculous nontroversy, disseminating insults from the conservative activist dictionary, and shaking their digital fists at everyone who does not respond with megadittos.

But sometimes Tom, or Dick, or Harry will glance up from his basement warren at his strawboss with a tired, confused look in his eyes. This may indicate that he's begun, if just barely, to suspect that he's not really a great citizen journalist, dishing out the zingers that will eventually drop the Lame Stream Media dragon and free the sheeple it holds in lieberal bondage, but a mere propagandist working in a sub-sub-contractor's hackshop. And for free!

He may be thinking: I didn't get into this to enforce someone else's groupthink. I wanted to tell my own story my own way. These people seem not to appreciate my individuality, my gifts, my beautiful soul. Maybe it's time to get that communications degree and join a PR firm, preferably one with a social media emphasis...

That's when you tell him about Omaha Beach. He may flee then and there. Or there'll be a pause, and maybe a faint crackling sound and smell of cordite as his pride flares up and burns out of his brain-pan whatever common sense he was raised with, and in that cleansing fire he will begin to see himself as an actual soldier in the cause, a battle-weary dogface who does his killin' with a keyboard, a guy who, when he gets to the Great Beyond, can proudly mount the final Hill with the Duke and Audie Murphy and whatshisname from Band of Brothers, confident that he's given his true, last full measure.

This is better than citizen journalism. This is dead butch!

He'll get back on the case, and for good this time. Because he's in the Army now. You can get him to write, or at least tweet or yell at hippies, stark raving crazy shit like "JEW-BASHING NYT COLUMNIST CALLS OBAMA 'ISRAEL'S BEST FRIEND'" and he won't even feel self-conscious about it. You can get him to tell the world that Blessed Andrew Breitbart was murdered by ObamaHitler. You can get him to use hashtags and wear T-shirts that would embarrass a self-respecting 12-year-old. He won't care. He's got that thousand-yard stare. He's part of something bigger than himself, bigger than any of you -- big enough to fight and die for, maybe even big enough to kill for -- try him, Cap; you'll see.

How does it end? Hopefully like the hippie communes that ran out of weed and quietly broke up, rather than like Synanon or the Branch Davidians. In either case, it'll be fun to watch -- from a suitable distance.

UPDATE. In comments, wjts wrote a monologue. Excerpt:
... Invective was flying, mostly from the libs. Lies of course - "Oh, you're a racist." "Oh, you hate women." "Oh, you're a paid mouthpiece for the Koch Brothers." Some guys couldn't take it. One fella - - caught an accusation of misogyny right in the face. Never heard from him again, and he had told me he had two Medals of Honor, four Purple Hearts, six Silver Stars, and a signed photograph of Janine Turner. Nothing to be ashamed of, but some men are cut out for the battlefield and some aren't. Me, I kept fighting. Every accusation that I didn't know what I was talking about I threw right back in that LibCom's face. "What percentage of the student body at top-tier law schools are of Hispanic descent?" they'd ask, and I fired right back with "What percentage of your mother was a Mexican whore?"...
Whetstone gets Shakespearean:
Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot
But he'll remember with advantages
What tweets he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words,
Ace of Spades, The Jawa Report
Atlas Shrugged, Instapundit
Be in their flowing Big Gulps freshly rememb'red
This blog shall the paranoid teach his son
And Breitbart shall ne'er go by....
That's good shooting, soldiers! Now get some shut-eye -- we got a big day of Alinskyizing ahead of us!

Whole sordid story here!

Wake me when they've got him covering up a break-in.

My favorite bit so far, from PJ Tatler:
[Derrick] Bell wasn’t just seeking diversity in Harvard’s faculty. He was a virulent racist, who depicted President Ronald Reagan as a — not making this up — racist space alien who offered to buy all of America’s black citizens to erase the nation’s deficit.
Wow, Bell really believed that about Reagan?
That’s from a short story Bell wrote, that he later turned into a piece for HBO.
Gasp! Bell committed the crime of fiction!
It’s a smear. It’s insane. It’s evil.
Please, nobody tell PJ Tatler about... well, Western Civilization.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

TODAY IN RUSH LIMBAUGH NONSENSE. It's a bumper crop, but surely Dr. Mrs. Ole Perfesser deserves some sort of distinction for claiming that Rush Fucking Limbaugh is being bullied by Sandra Fluke. I believe in Girl Power, but come on. One among many glorious passages:
Do I care if Fluke fucks 50 guys? No, but I do care if she uses her position to gang up with other mean girls (and guys) to ram a political mandate down the throats of companies who do not believe in what she is peddling.
Not only is the slut fucking 50 guys, she's also ramming it down their throats!  It's practically the perfect conservative sex nightmare; all it lacks is Fluke demanding an orgasm.

For the rest of them you may as well just go straight to Instapundit, which collects them better than I can -- except Perfesser Reynolds doesn't know how funny they are. Reynolds seems upset that some people want to use the power of boycotts against Limbaugh, which is a major reversal for him -- he usually loves boycotts when people like Rush Limbaugh call for them.

Me, I want Limbaugh on the air forever. He helps to clarify things. By 2013 I expect he'll be live-broadcasting from Klan rallies.

Monday, March 05, 2012

THE CONSERVATIVE COMEBACK, PART 844,392. It's hard to believe Andrew McCarthy actually served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney -- under Bush, granted, but still you don't expect actual mental cases to come out of those jobs. Now look what the poor, crazy bastard's descended to -- shaking his fist at Don Imus in the service of Rush Limbaugh in an essay called "Don Imus, House Pet." It's the case of McCarthy's life, and he's arguing it in the Court of Public Opinion! With luck maybe he can get the judge to sentence Imus to be waterboarded -- it's more exciting when it's extrajudicial, but times are tough and he'll take what he can get.

I'll boil it down for you: Imus, McCarthy tells us, is crude, "gratuitously insulting," insincere -- whereas the Balzacian Limbaugh "is able to reach and to teach because, as he noted today, his good-natured humor can be biting and illuminating without being nasty." No, I'm not kidding -- McCarthy not only calls Limbaugh's humor good-natured without being nasty, he actually offers Limbaugh's own generous self-assessment as evidence.

The really weird thing, though, comes when McCarthy finishes his Rush roolz/Imus droolz fan rant and moves on to conspiracy theories:
Here’s the pathetic thing about this episode: We’ve been given the playbook and still we don’t see we’re being played. “Pick the target,” Saul Alinksy said, “freeze it, personalize it, polarize it.”
Saul Alinksy! Slowly I turned...

It ends with McCarthy warning us that Barack Hitler is planning "to usher in a new order in which 'rights' become not what government must refrain from doing to you but rather what government must do for you," and this plaintive cry:
While Don Imus and the rest of the herd bleats over Rush, that is what is taking root. And if you don’t like it, prepare to be the next target.
I used to routinely ask if these people even knew any normal people, but now I'm just assuming that they were all raised in Skinner boxes and shipped to think tanks on their 18th birthdays.
SHORTER TIMOTHY P. CARNEY: From all his talk about contraception, I was nearly convinced that Rick Santorum was the best candidate for libertarians. How disappointed I was to learn he was just another liberal.
NEW VOICE COLUMN UP, about that whole Limbaugh slut thing. It's interesting that this came up the week Breitbart died. I bet there are a whole lot of his fans out there thinking, "Even without Rush we must press on with our slut truth!" In other words, I don't expect them to behave any better from here on.

Sunday, March 04, 2012

CAN THEY BOTH LOSE? I'll write more about it later, but I hope some of you good people are already savoring the Koch Brothers' attempt to take over the Cato Institute. Apparently after years of funding Cato, the Koches think it's time they turned the policy shop into a straight-up propaganda vehicle, and are trying to muscle some of their flunkies onto the Cato board -- including the human waste product John "Hindrocket" Hinderaker of Power Line.

There are all sorts of wonderful things about this. First, we might ask, why are Ed Crane and the other Catoites resisting this takeover? If the Kochs can turn Cato out with their money, doesn't that show that the Invisible Hand has anointed them as Producers, and judged the Catoites to be Looters and Wreckers standing in the way of Capital? Hell, when the Kochs bought Wisconsin, I didn't see Cato complaining -- quite the contrary.

Also lovely: Watching the libertarians tiptoe around it. At Reason Matt Welch, clearly unsure which dick to suck, issues a terse bulletin and ducks. And, Jason Kuznicki?...
I can’t understand how people who are so smart in business can be so boneheaded when it comes to activism. It’s a painfully stupid decision. Even if it were innocent — which it’s not — it still looks horrible. It’s as if the Kochs set out to prove every last thing that progressives have ever said about them.
...thanks for the gift of laughter.

I'd prefer to see them all die screaming in a fire, but this will do for now.

UPDATE. Jane Mayer's perspective is useful. As is KeninNY's at Down With Tyranny.

Friday, March 02, 2012

SHORTER JAMES POULOS: Our educational and religious controversies can be addressed with the healing power of yoga. Just make sure it's not the nude kind.

UPDATE. Link fixed.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

THE SAVING REMNANT. Olympia Snowe has turned out the lights in the sane-people wing of the Republican Party, and the boys in the psych ward are pulling faces at her through the caged glass. Timothy P. Carney tries to tell us that the moderates are actually what people hate about Republicans, and now that they're gone everything's gonna be fine.
Moderates are as guilty as anyone of being intolerant when faced with conflicts within the GOP. Frum blasted as "Unpatriotic" those conservatives who failed to support George W. Bush's ill-considered invasion of Iraq, and urged all conservatives to "turn [their] backs" on these heretics. Brooks himself draws some pretty rigid boundaries of permissible dissent, excoriating as "nihilists" those who opposed the unprecedented and unfair Troubled Asset Relief Program in 2008.
This makes it look as is conservatives were fighting bravely against the Iraq War and TARP, but were muscled into line by RINOs David Brooks and David Frum.

Bullshit. Frum was talking -- in National Review! -- about a small group of paleos like Joe Sobran and Llewellyn Rockwell.  Actually, it was liberals who mostly got the accusations of unpatriotism from pro-war conservatives -- which is to say, nearly every single one of them. (I refer you to my posts from 2003 through 2006, or the pages of conservative magazines, or your own memory for evidence.)

As to TARP, I recall some screamers, but also a lot of this -- Rich Lowry:
It seems obvious now that we needed some sort of massive effort to try to prop up the banks and loosen the credit markets. (Remember: There’s always the possibility that things would have been much worse without whatever psychological benefit–if any–the passage of Paulson brought to the markets.) Perhaps the Paulson plan wasn’t exactly the right prescription. But the virtue of its open-endedness is that it allows Paulson the flexibility to adjust as warranted–witness the shift in emphasis to direct equity infusion.
Ross Douthat:
I don't think there's any question, at this point, that the bailout being considered will do real damage to the principles of free markets and limited government: The only question is how severe what Jim Manzi terms the "ideological costs" end up being. But as a layman in these matters, with no way of judging independently how materially awful the costs of inaction might be, I'm sitting here watching the House vote and the market drop and drop and thinking exactly what Larison's hypothetical American is thinking: If the defeat of the bailout is a victory for liberty, it's a victory whose costs I'm not prepared to bear.
Etc. In general, for conservatives it was Obama's election that suddenly made bailouts the greatest tragedy in the history of the Republic.

Carney has been peddling this line for a while -- that there's a secret, saving remnant that works behind the scenes in the Republican Party to keep it, and America, on the straight and narrow. Thus he feels compelled to describe what has clearly been the most powerful force in that Party for decades as a beleaguered minority. Why does he even try? Well, there's traditional conservative persecution mania, but I think another factor comes into play: Conservatives have fucked this country up pretty badly, and maybe they think if they pretend to have been cowering under the blows of David Frum all this time, they can convince some dummies that it was Olympia Snowe's fault.

I just hope for their sake that they aren't expecting normal people to go for it. One man's remnant is another man's fringe.

UPDATE. Some commenters point out that Snowe's voting record isn't as moderate as all that. Okay, let's stipulate that "moderate" in American politics has a meaning divorced from other realities. Still, I think this record, while not so hot, at least compares favorably to what Tea Partiers and other crackpots currently demand from non-INO Rs. And it goes to show how little accommodation of reality the new party elders will tolerate.