April 8, 2009

"Is it possible that there might be something really ugly at the core of contemporary liberalism?"

A question for Camille Paglia. An excerpt from her answer:
Liberalism... has been reduced to an elitist set of rhetorical formulas, which posit the working class as passive, mindless victims in desperate need of salvation by the state. Individual rights and free expression, which used to be liberal values, are being gradually subsumed to worship of government power...

...Liberalism has gradually sunk into a soft, soggy, white upper-middle-class style that I often find preposterous and repellent. The nut cases on the right are on the uneducated fringe, but on the left they sport Ivy League degrees.... It's a comfortable, urban, messianic liberalism befogged by psychiatric pharmaceuticals. Conservatives these days are more geared to facts than emotions, and as individuals they seem to have a more ethical, perhaps sports-based sense of fair play.

***

Paglia's point aligns with something Justice Scalia often says. Here's a passage from a case we talked about in my Conlaw2 class yesterday:
The virtue of a democratic system with a First Amendment is that it readily enables the people, over time, to be persuaded that what they took for granted is not so, and to change their laws accordingly. That system is destroyed if the smug assurances of each age are removed from the democratic process and written into the Constitution. So to counterbalance the Court's criticism of our ancestors, let me say a word in their praise: they left us free to change. The same cannot be said of this most illiberal Court, which has embarked on a course of inscribing one after another of the current preferences of the society (and in some cases only the counter majoritarian preferences of the society's law trained elite) into our Basic Law.

165 comments:

ricpic said...

Liberalism is the religion of control freaks.

AlphaLiberal said...

Really, this is just crazy, self-flattering, stuff.

And this is very ironic:
Conservatives these days are more geared to facts than emotions, .....

Note: She doesn't cite one fact to back this up!! She just makes a sweeping, sneering generalization.

How very typical of modern conservatives today - they are getting emotional screaming that Obama wants to take their guns, that Obama is a fascist, a socialist, that he wants to put people in education camps.

It's the opposite of what Paglia says.

Paglia is fricken nuts or just woke up from a 30-year nap. Rip Van Paglia.

zedzded said...

Liberalism is the religion of hate and death.

AlphaLiberal said...

Got a fact to back that up? Or are you just being emotional again?

peter hoh said...

And it's also true that the critique of liberalism has gradually sunk into a soft, soggy, white upper-middle-class style that I often find preposterous and repellent.

Lisa said...

There is a strong anti-Semitic streak in many liberals. There is also a strong desire to infantalize the poor, the non-white and the non-Christian/Jew.

AlphaLiberal said...

There is a deep irresponsibility among conservatives. Over the past 8 years they've done deep damage to our country.

Now that they're out of power, they're behaving like brats, throwing tantrums, disavowing responsibility for their deeds.

zedzded said...

Your comments are facts enough.

The fact that you love abortions is another. I could go on, but I just ate.

Back to your hate, liberal.

Ann Althouse said...

"self-flattering"

Is Paglia a conservative? I think she's more of a liberal.

Trevor Jackson said...

"Conservatives these days are more geared to facts than emotions"

C'mon. What a provocative, dumb thing to write. It's just as dumb as saying all conservatives are warmongers or torture apologists or that all liberals are elitists.

Ask a liberal union member if she feels like a "passive, mindless victim" when she walks a picket line for a fair wage or better working conditions.

Maguro said...

Ask a liberal union member if she feels like a "passive, mindless victim" when she walks a picket line for a fair wage or better working conditions.

This type of melodramatic appeal to emotion is exactly what Paglia is talking about. Great way to prove her point.

Trevor Jackson said...

It's melodramatic to cite actual events? I thought you were geared to facts.

ShadyCharacter said...

Alpha really is a good example of the typical hysterical/hateful liberal that Paglia references.

Who can forget the knee-jerk accusation that the NY mass shooter who shot up the immigrant services center was some xenophobic white racist spurred on by Rush Limbaugh?

And on this board, the defensiveness and vitriol merely confirms Paglia's point. If AlphaLiberal were more intelligent she would have adopted a more even-tempered tone for responding to this post instead of deploying her typical spit up bile on the screen first, think later (if at all). Of course, if she were smarter she wouldn't be a liberal in the first place, or if that isn't fair to rational liberals like Paglia or Althouse, she at least wouldn't be a liberal troll.

Alpha, what was that NY shooter's name again?

John Althouse Cohen said...

Conservatives these days are more geared to facts than emotions, and as individuals they seem to have a more ethical, perhaps sports-based sense of fair play.

This is hilarious -- thanks for the laughs to start my morning.

Maguro said...

It's melodramatic to cite actual events?

You didn't cite "actual events", you cited a cliched generality, a rhetorical device meant to make the listener sympathize with your point of view rather than think through the issue.

Zach said...

Ask a liberal union member if she feels like a "passive, mindless victim" when she walks a picket line for a fair wage or better working conditions.

This is itself kind of an idealized fantasy scenario, isn't it? The liberal union member, actually walking a picket line, for better working conditions -- the perfect blend of ideology and practicality. Very Grapes of Wrath.

How many strikes in your lifetime have dealt with hazardous working conditions? Have there even been any? There's OSHA nowadays, after all.

Freder Frederson said...

Is Paglia a conservative? I think she's more of a liberal.

You only think Paglia is a liberal because in your bizarro world you think of yourself as a liberal. Paglia is like you, a conservative who still holds some socially liberal positions (is still pro-choice, doesn't despise gays, and while not anti-torture is a little uncomfortable with the excesses of the Bush administration but is too much of a coward to object to it) but really just despises anyone who couldn't get on board with the whole war thing.

ShadyCharacter said...

Wow, JAC, what a thoughtful response.

I imagine you pulled one of those really cute faces like John Stewart pulls when dismissing an argument he wishes to dismiss without engagement!

I associate that face with the closing of the liberal mind...

TMink said...

Oh yeah, Paglia is one of those pro-choice bisexual Clinton supporting conservatives you hear so much about.

Yep, that is a fact. 8)

Trey

Freder Frederson said...

How many strikes in your lifetime have dealt with hazardous working conditions? Have there even been any? There's OSHA nowadays, after all.

You've never been on a factory floor or a construction site in your life, have you?

zedzded said...

Don't be too harst towards JAC - he has never played sports, by his own admission he is not much of a man.

But he is a communist, so there is that.

Salamandyr said...

I love Paglia. However, she does have a tendency toward breezy proclamations of absolute conviction that she contradicts with equal conviction the next day, depending on her mood and the days news.

She, like a lot of educated, literate people, mistakes adroit communication for intelligence. I always felt she was more critical of Bush than he deserved and less critical of Obama than he deserves. Her criticisms of his actions here she blames on "advisors"; Obama is so intelligent, so "of steady temperament", that these can't possibly be his mistake. No, it must be his advisor's, insidiously overriding the Great One's consummate good sense.

Seems to me, Occam's Razor applies here. If the guy you believe is so filled with good sense keeps doing things that only the most foolish would do, perhaps your premises are wrong.

Trevor Jackson said...

Good lord, it's a bloooooog comments sectionnnnnnn. You want me to produce stories about nurses on strike for reduced case loads or Boeing plant workers who deserve higher wages as the wealth they produce for the company increases?

Meanwhile, would you like to help Paglia out? She's made a sweeping generalization without any evidence. Where's your conservative "sports-based sense of fair play"?

Freder Frederson said...

But he is a communist, so there is that.

Yes, this is a perfect example of the sense of fact based fair play that conservatives are so well known for--call anyone you disagree with a communist.

Salamandyr said...

Althouse, the Scalia bit is excellent. Where is it from?

MadisonMan said...

My favorite line: Don't get me started on the hermetic bourgeois arrogance of American literati!

I love her writing, especially how it pierces straight to the truth, but I do wonder if Ms. Paglia sees herself in that statement.

MadisonMan said...

I should add -- pierces straight to the truth as she sees it at the moment.

AJ Lynch said...

I think it is accurate to say liberals work much harder to game the electoral systems and processes.

That is one way to assess which side supports fair play.

Quayle said...

There is something very ugly at the core of contemporary liberalism: pure, unadulterated arrogance.

Pride right to the core.

The feeling that they are so superior and so knowing that they are actually doing us a favor to take control and boss the rest of us around.

Add a heavy dose of "my party over all - even over logic and facts" and you have the modern American liberal, educated in a one-view-only class room, and never contradicted by a one-view-only press.

downtownlad said...

Sorry, but this made be laugh:

. Conservatives these days are more geared to facts than emotions, and as individuals they seem to have a more ethical, perhaps sports-based sense of fair play.

Hmm - I guess "Torture first, trial later" is "fair play"

And what facts are conservatives geared towards?

Rush Limbaugh denied just yesterday that anyone died through torture under the Bush Administration, which is completely false.

Conservatives argue that tax cuts lead to increasing revenues, despite 30 years of data that proves that wrong.

Conservatives are in complete denial about global warming.

Conservatives deny evolution and argue for Intelligent Design, despite zero evidence to back that theory up.

Paglia then goes on to argue that "there were ambiguities about Obama's birth certificate that have never been satisfactorily resolved". Really? Name one.

As for Scalia being a homophobe, well that's because it's true. Anyone who uses the term "homosexual agenda" is a homophobe.

Here's a challenge for Ann, since she likes to deal with "facts".

Provide one piece of evidence that Scalia is NOT a homophobe.

Just one.

Kirk Parker said...

Alpha,

"... that Obama wants to take their guns ..."

Are you somehow under the impression that Obama doesn't want to do this?

Trevor,

"Do you want me to... "

No, he very specifically asked for citations of strikes about unsafe working conditions.

downtownlad said...

Paglia likes to be provocative.

I'm not sure she truly believes everything she's writing.

Zach said...

You've never been on a factory floor or a construction site in your life, have you?

Nope, but I am good at looking things up when I'm not sure.

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/wkstp.t01.htm

There were 15 work stoppages (strikes or lockouts) involving 1000 or more workers last year, which decreased working time by 0.01 percent. The peak year appears to have been 1959, with 245 incidents decreasing working time by 0.43 percent.

I'll defer to any observations you have personally made, but if you believe that table, the average worker spends about one day on strike per forty years of work. (I'm unclear on whether that's from all strikes, or just major strikes that involve 1000 or more workers.)

ricpic said...

The American Federation of Government Employees smarting under the whip of federal work rules strikes for a two hour lunch break.

zedzded said...

Well, Freder, I do disagree with communism, and you, as a communist, should know that.

Althouse is a communist. That is a fact. How I feel about that is irrelevant.

garage mahal said...

Paglia knows she isn't bright enough to stand out in liberal circles so she has to pen these idiotic self loathing articles to get noticed.

AlphaLiberal said...

Ann Althouse:
Is Paglia a conservative? I think she's more of a liberal.

Not at all. She's spent years bashing libs. Reading the page you link to, we see:

- Obama bashing, echoing many conservative memes.

- Her stereotypes of liberals (BTW, several decades out of date. Do try to jkeep up, Camille, the world is changing all the time).

- Her odd characterization of libs as not having humor.

- Paglia: "When I first heard "Barack the Magic Negro" ..... I found it very daring and funny."

- She loves her Sarah Palin.

- Etc, etc.

She's more a bore than anything, though.

Henry said...

I think Paglia makes a mistake by sliding from a critique of liberalism into a far less defensible comparison of liberalism and conservatism.

As an intellectual Paglia is attracted to clear, forceful arguments. She is quite correct to point out that contemporary liberalism has wedded its traditional humanistic concerns to the robotic machinery of the state. It's a mindset in which the essence of being human is biology, not autonomy. It's a state that gives you support for the kids you chose not to abort (despite the state's best wishes), but can take them away as well. It's a state that controls what you can eat or drink but will pay for your pharmaceuticals. It's a state where public schools deliver free breakfasts and lousy instruction.

It's hard to pick the right adjective -- I prefer "preposterous" over "ugly" or "repellent" -- but there is something preposterous at the core of contemporary political thinking on both sides.

Obviously when the current crop of conservatives were in power, they stood for nothing. But at least conservatives can be distinguished as social or libertarian. Where is such distinction on the liberal side?

AJ Lynch said...

Garage:

How does one stand out in liberal circles? Only by chanting the liberal catechism which is "Give us more and more govt aid because our constituencies are helpless and unlucky and even perhaps lazy but they vote DEM".

AlphaLiberal said...

ShadyCharacter:

I already admitted my mistake in posting in haste. I deleted the post within minutes of writing it.

So, all you have is nothing. Certainly no class.

However, the very next day the conservative Poplawski shoot three cops dead.

According to friends in recorded videos, Poplawski was an ardent conservative who was worried that Obama would take his gun collection away.

Then, you have TIm McVeigh, who hated government so much he blew up the Oklahoma City federal building.

And, still today, we have conservative leaders calling for people to be armed, angry, etc.

The right wing is becoming more dangerous in their delusions.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Alpha saidNote: She doesn't cite one fact to back this up!! She just makes a sweeping, sneering generalization.

Coming from you that is really rich.

Freder Frederson said...

I'll defer to any observations you have personally made, but if you believe that table, the average worker spends about one day on strike per forty years of work. (I'm unclear on whether that's from all strikes, or just major strikes that involve 1000 or more workers.)

I don't know what your stunning ability to look up the number of strikes in the U.S. has to do with my snark, but my point was that you seem to think that the establishment of OSHA has eliminated all hazards from the workplace. This of course is nonsense.

First of all, OSHA and the the myriad of worker health, safety, overtime, minimum wage, right to know, equal employment opportunity, workers with disabilities act and all the other worker protection laws (most of which I am sure you think are unnecessary and burdensome) exist in no small part because of the efforts of organized labor. Secondly, even with all these laws, many workplaces are still very dangerous and many workers are still exploited. Your research time would have been better spent looking up the rate of worker injury. You might be particularly interested in injury rates in the meatpacking industry, which has experienced rapid de-unionization over the past thirty years.

Fen said...

Conservatives these days are more geared to facts than emotions, and as individuals they seem to have a more ethical, perhaps sports-based sense of fair play.

John Althouse Coehn: This is hilarious -- thanks for the laughs to start my morning.

Odd reaction, considering that its the conservatives on this blog who defend Ann from liberal vitriol. Her own party hates her because she is a "heretic". The rest of us may not agree with her positions, but we defend her right to have those positions, ie. "sports-based sense of fair play."

Perhaps you're not as wise as you think you are?

Darcy said...

Geez. She's so fabulous. Love her mind, even when I disagree with her thoughts. I'm really getting a crush on her.

Freder Frederson said...

Well, Freder, I do disagree with communism, and you, as a communist, should know that.

1. Do you even know what a communist is?

2. If the answer to 1. is not "someone who doesn't agree with me", what exactly makes me a communist?

Hoosier Daddy said...

You've never been on a factory floor or a construction site in your life, have you?

Have you Freder? I did for quite a few years and despite saftey conditions that went above and beyond OSHA requirements, people still got hurt and killed.

AlphaLiberal said...

And, I just want to say I know all conservatives aren't of the crazy ilk. Just the loudest and most influential ones.

For example, here's an example of a conservative calling Lush Windbag out on his support for torture.

Some conservatives, a minority probably, still believe in justice and the American way.

Fen said...

And on this board, the defensiveness and vitriol merely confirms Paglia's point.

Echo. Good point.

Freder Frederson said...

Odd reaction, considering that its the conservatives on this blog who defend Ann from liberal vitriol. Her own party hates her because she is a "heretic".

You don't defend Ann because she is a liberal. You defend her because she claims to be a liberal yet she spreads conservative lies, only links positively to conservative websites, links to liberal websites only when they pick on her or are fawning over her because she is marrying one of you (damn, I wish it was Simon--that would have been too much.)

AlphaLiberal said...

Another example of fact-free conservative opining:
All over the web and cable "news" conservaticves are crying hysterically that Obama is cutting the defense budget.

This is completely false. Obama proposes an increase in the defense budget.

But conservatives don't care. Their worldview, their stereotypes, their ideology, depend on their falsehood being told to their minions as truth.

And as their minions mimic the mendacious malefactors the nation suffers.

AlphaLiberal said...

Freder, trying to reason with Fen is like talking to a stone.

A nasty, vile, vitriolic, bilious stone.

Freder Frederson said...

Have you Freder?

Yes I have. I have also managed health, safety and environmental programs.

Freeman Hunt said...

From Alpha Lib:

- Her odd characterization of libs as not having humor.

Heh.

Trevor Jackson said...

"defensiveness and vitriol"

More evidence you guys are geared to the facts and not emotion like us liberals with our ugly cores. Paglia really owes you her thanks for doing her job for her.

Why do I keep coming back here? It must be that ugly core that thinks I'll amuse myself.

AlphaLiberal said...

Freder tries to reason with one of thousands of Paglia's unemotional and factual conservatives:

1. Do you even know what a communist is?

Ha-ha. This obsession with calling anyone they don't like communists is Article 4,921 knocking down Paglia's vapid argument.

No, they don't even know what the word means.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Another example of fact-free conservative opining

Alpha, please allow me to remind you what you said regarding the NY shooter. It bears repeating since you seem to think only liberals like you have a grasp on facts. Barring a retraction, you have zero credibility.

This is the bitter fruit of right-wing hate mongering. Immigrants have been a target for attacks and hate for years. So some unbalanced violent person goes looking for a target and picks the people we've been told are harming in the country.

I'm definitely not saying the right wing has espoused this - they've stopped short. But the irresponsible vitriol towards immigrants leads to this type of thing.

Just like the overheated anti-government rhetoric fed the Oklahoma City bombings.

As ye reap, so shall we sow.

AJ Lynch said...

Freder:

I agree with you. Althouse rarely finds interesting or amusing stuff on liberal websites.

Hoosier Daddy said...

or are fawning over her because she is marrying one of you (damn, I wish it was Simon--that would have been too much.)

Gee. I think that says quite a bit about some pent up issues you have inside.

Henry said...

A nasty, vile, vitriolic, bilious stone.

I don't know about facts, but conservatives may have a better grasp of metaphor than this.

(Thought maybe not, if you consider Paglia a conservative.)

Freeman -- touche.

AlphaLiberal said...

Hoosier Daddy:

I deleted that post about the guy who shot up the immigrant help office within minutes and said it was a mistake.

What more do you want? Now you're posting it.

What a complete asshole. Tell us how much you love facts.

John Althouse Cohen said...

Is Paglia a conservative? I think she's more of a liberal.

How so?

Hoosier Daddy said...

More evidence you guys are geared to the facts and not emotion like us liberals with our ugly cores

You mean like appealing to emotions like eliminating nuclear weapons? If that's not pie in the sky wishful thinking I don't know what is.

John Althouse Cohen said...

Don't be too harst towards JAC - he has never played sports, by his own admission he is not much of a man.

But he is a communist, so there is that.


Hey, I object to your comment. I'm not a communist.

peter hoh said...

I like Paglia. I'm always interested in critiques that are directed at one's own side, so to speak.

Bill Bennett or Jonah Goldberg on liberalsim's dark side = boring and predictable. Paglia on liberalism's dark side = always worth a read.

It's why I read Althouse. And for critiques of the right, I like Larison and Sullivan.

Freder Frederson said...

Alpha, please allow me to remind you what you said regarding the NY shooter. It bears repeating since you seem to think only liberals like you have a grasp on facts. Barring a retraction, you have zero credibility.

You know, Hoosier, since you seem obsessed with this. I would like to point out that Paul Harvey, without any evidence, laid the blame for Oklahoma City on Arab terrorists immediately after it happened. Something he never retracted or apologized for.

Freder Frederson said...

You mean like appealing to emotions like eliminating nuclear weapons?

Yeah, wasn't it Reagan who first went down that road?

traditionalguy said...

I like her sportsmanship analogy of talk radio listeners valuing fair rulings more than they value Umpires who are bribed into throwing victory to a losing competitor. That is the difference we face over and over in the Liberal/conservative dichotomy. The mantra of winning at all costs is a Progressive/Alinski way of approaching politics. The argument that it's OK for progressives to do it because everybody does it is false. The American value that honors winners from a fair competition is alive and well. Scalia's and the Professor's approach calling for a reliance upon Democratic process comes from that value. That is an ideal from the Greek philosophers. But the Progressives/Alinski "win at all costs" ideal comes from an Eastern tradition of tyranny by a superior Leader and his ruling clique/Party. North Korea's system is a good example. Power has become the aphrodisiac of choice, or new Religion, for these Progressives. The disaster is that we are quickly losing our faith in one another's good will when the winning cheaters are being continually publically honored, while straight shooters are being continually publicly ridiculed, like Sarah Palin was ridiculed. Paglia sees this happening, and like Werner Herzog she asks Why.

Hoosier Daddy said...

What a complete asshole. Tell us how much you love facts.

Not surprisingly You miss the point. You stand high and mighty espousing your righteousness and devotion to facts and before taking 10 seconds to research the facts you shot your mouth off with your preconceived belief that only a crazed right winger could do such a thing. That wasn't a mistake, but rather your typical knee jerk reaction to an event in which the facts didn't jive with your belief set. That exposes you as nothing more than a partisan hack.

Got that?

AlphaLiberal said...

JAC:

Hey, I object to your comment. I'm not a communist.

Ha ha! Dude, don't you know conservatives are unemotional and factual!

Turns out this country is just SWARMING with communists! If conservatives say so, it must be so. They are oh-so-factual.

peter hoh said...

Shady Character wrote: Who can forget the knee-jerk accusation that the NY mass shooter who shot up the immigrant services center was some xenophobic white racist spurred on by Rush Limbaugh?

Anyone want to talk about the Pittsburgh shooter who thought that Obama was going to take away his guns?

Freder Frederson said...

The mantra of winning at all costs is a Progressive/Alinski way of approaching politics.

My God man, have you ever heard of Karl Rove?

Hoosier Daddy said...

You know, Hoosier, since you seem obsessed with this. I would like to point out that Paul Harvey, without any evidence, laid the blame for Oklahoma City on Arab terrorists immediately after it happened. Something he never retracted or apologized for.

Good for you Freder. Then again, I don't listen to Paul Harvey, never did, wasn't aware Paul Harvey had an opinion on OKC or anything else for that matter. Oh and Paul Harvey isn't here commenting on liberal devotion to facts like Alpha is.

Oh and after your quip about Althouse and Simon, you shouldn't use the word obession either. Just a suggestion.

ricpic said...

My eyes, my eyes, those scalding conservative lies;
Wash them clean, Lord Obama, my yes we can guy.

Freder Frederson said...

The disaster is that we are quickly losing our faith in one another's good will when the winning cheaters are being continually publically honored, while straight shooters are being continually publicly ridiculed, like Sarah Palin was ridiculed.

Sarah Palin was ridiculed because she was a pathological liar (kept repeating the lie that she said "no" the bridge to nowhere even after it was proven she hadn't) and she was totally unprepared for the national spotlight.

ElcubanitoKC said...

Kinda busy today, but I wanted to throw this out there:

Congressional Black Caucus praises Fidel Castro

...based of course, on facts...

Have a great day everyone.

Lisa said...

How's this for ugly?

Mass Dems want to give illegal aliens the right to vote

Mind you legal residents and visa holders don't have that right.

Zach said...

Freder, get lost.

I pointed out that actual time spent striking is wildly unrepresentative and uncommon. You immediately made the issue about me. I gave you statistics that say actual time spent striking is wildly unrepresentative. You start railing off on things like injury rates, etc.

The reason my observation was relevant to the discussion was that the image of striking for better working conditions has such totemic power that it becomes the image of liberalism despite being a very uncommon activity in today's world.

The imagery I was objecting to was not a picture of a union representative pushing for workplace safety legislation. I didn't say people should join unions, shouldn't join unions, or should quit the ones they're in. I made an argument about political imagery -- in a thread about a Camille Paglia column, for heaven's sake!

I'm done with this thread.

AlphaLiberal said...

Hoosier Daddy:

All you're doing now is berating me over a mistake I made. I know I was busy and wrote in haste that time. I admitted it. I deleted the post. That proves nothing more.

And you continue to rub my nose in it, like the classless asshole you are.

Meanwhile, the very next day a gun-loving conservative by the name of Richard Poplawski went nuts and killed 3 cops because he thought the Obama government was going to take his guns away.

Poplawski's friends said he was very concerned about this completely nonfactual conservative storyline - Obama wants to take away all of our guns - was a factor in the killings.

I was - sadly - off by ONE DAY.

And, Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols were government-hating conservatives who bombed the Federal Building in OK City.

Franco said...

Paglia is a classical liberal which today makes her close to a conservative. She is a Democrat out of a time-frozen nostalgia for the old party that no longer exists as well.

She is brilliant but she is conflicted politically and I think she is quite unaware of the true nature of leftism.

JSF said...

For all you enlightened Liberals out there, here is something that might "open" your mind:

http://valley-of-the-shadow.blogspot.com/2009/04/discuss-journal-of-plague-year.html

Oh, wait I'm an evil BusHitlernaziRethukklican, so my opinion does not matter. Love that Free speech party! /sarc

AlphaLiberal said...

Anyone want to talk about the Pittsburgh shooter who thought that Obama was going to take away his guns?

No, the conservatives will not discuss that case of the cop-killing, gun-loving conservative. (Nor Althouse, apparently).

Nor the fact that the conservative movement is lying out of large ass about Obama wanting to take guns away.

Oh, but they're all "factual". Althouse and Paglia say so.

ShadyCharacter said...

Alpha - "I deleted that post about the guy who shot up the immigrant help office within minutes and said it was a mistake."

Objection, non-responsive!

It was the knee-jerk bile spewing that is at issue. Not that you got a "fact" wrong, but that in so doing, you exposed your basic small-mindedness. That you retracted it makes no difference!

As for what I want from you (i.e., what you can do to make me and others forget about this evidence of your basic toolness), the answer is nothing.

You will forever be stained by your idiocy on this board. Every time you spit up some new dreck, someone here will point out your basic shallowness as a thinker and cultural observer. Your hack partisanship and small-mindedness. In short your stupidity. You'll probably end up just changing your tag at some point like the other trolls (michael/jeremy for example).

Oh, and nobody EVER claimed on this board or anywhere else in the known universe that there are no bad people who either are conservative, or are painted as conservative. That you would point to Timothy McVeigh (who even a little basic research would show is no "conservative" in the American sense) or that nut who shot the cops is just further evidence of your toolitude.

I mean seriously, here's an example you may even be able to follow.

Prominent news story - "Serial Rapist at Large, details at 11".

AlphaLiberal posts the following: "Just goes to show those damn black people always raping and whatnot, it's just in their nature".

Then as facts develop and the rapist turns out to be white, Alpha "retracts" his comment and says, "I'm absolved, right?" and then goes on to say - "Everyone knows lots of black people are rapists after all, so I wasn't really wrong in a general sense, just in this instance"...

That's AlpoLiberal right there...

AlphaLiberal said...

JSF,

Don't you know? Obama is Hitler. just listen to the right wing.

Or, he's a Marxist.

It's all soooo factual.

ShadyCharacter said...

Alpha, you will probably be reminded of this from here on out, by me or by others.

Enjoy!

Hoosier Daddy said...

And you continue to rub my nose in it, like the classless asshole you are.

Because you think spouting off a preconceived belief before knowing the facts was a mistake. You never considered that it could have been someone other than a crazed right winger.

I know I was busy and wrote in haste that time.

You didn't write in haste, you wrote a mini-manifesto that adhered to your beliefs that all conservatives are evil. Unlike other liberals here, you simply spout off the same leftist diatribe without even considering an alternative point of view, let alone facts.

I just think when it comes to a topic regarding facts your previous disregard for them needs to be repeated. If that makes me an asshole, fine. I've been called worse by better than you'll ever be.

JSF said...

Alpha,

How nice not to read something that might contridict your views.

Projection, perhaps?

Hoosier Daddy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AlphaLiberal said...

ShadyCharacter:

McVeigh didn't happen in a vacuum. He acted on the hysterical urgings of the conservative movement to hate the government. That's the point.

The same conservative movement that published the Turner Diaries and other dreck.

The conservative movement today is spreading such lies and hate and almost open calls for violence and revolution that weak minds like Paplowski and McVeigh can be tempted to take violent action.

Really, conservative leaders today are irresponsibly crying "fire" in a crowded theater. Stoking their fringe.

Expect more violence from the right wing.

JSF said...

Alpha,

It's a Blog, you click links.

Read it and tell me how "saintly" you Dems are.

Shanna said...

Conservatives are in complete denial about global warming.

Well garage, hasn't it been getting COLDER for the last few years and stagnant for many? (so much so that all of a sudden advocacy group are saying the wussy “climate change” instead of global warming) And didn't we just get out of a many ice age in 1850 or so? And 30 years ago, the same types were predicting an ice age? And even if it is getting warmer and continues to do so, how do we know that's a bad thing, or that we could even stop it? I'll tell you a little warmth sounds better to me after reading all about the little ice age, which was accompanied by famine and plague. But most conservatives who have a problem with the whole thing are irritated at how very unscientific some of the comments are and how flipping hypocritical some of the hollywood "let's go green!" types are.

Conservatives deny evolution

Not all conservatives “deny” evolution, probably the majority don't, although there is a faction and they would like it to be taught as theory rather than fact.

AlphaLiberal said...

HoosierAsshole:

I just think when it comes to a topic regarding facts your previous disregard for them needs to be repeated. If that makes me an asshole, fine.

No, that's not it. Here's what make you an asshole: Someone admits a mistake and then you keep bringing it up and say "see! see! You made a mistake. This one thing defines you for all time."

You didn't write in haste, you wrote a mini-manifesto that adhered to your beliefs that all conservatives are evil.

No, asshole. You weren't there. I wrote in haste. Because I was busy.

And no, I don't believe all conservatives are evil. I said as much up above.

That post was prompted because of concern over the overheated falsehoods and pro-violence rhetoric coming from the right wing and concerns that it will lead to people being hurt - which it has in the Paplowski shootings (which you ignore as it proves my point).

Factual example: Paplowski posted a Youtube of Glenn Beck warning of the Obama government setting up FEMA re-education camps. He told his friends he would die before letting the government take his guns, as Sean Hannity and Wayne Labeisppere have falsely alleged.

AlphaLiberal said...

JSF, I'm not reading a post that doesn't make a point and requires me to click on six hyperlinks to figure what the hell you're talking about.

If you don't bother to make an actual point I have no interest in responding.

Thanks.

traditionalguy said...

Freder Frederson... Karl Rove and Sarah Palin are your targets because they are smart enough not to be easily defeated in elections. The question is whether or not they were treated fairly in the public news stories? The question is not whether or not they dared to try to compete in elections, although Rove was said to be an Evil Genius and Palin was said to bean Idiot Rube. The full bridge to nowhere story was a good example of Palin's leadership style in Alaska. She was not lying about anything, unless you mean the way the news media reported the story in a Strawman way that anyone could then easily ridicule, since the story was initially presented in an exaggerated and half false way by that partisan news media. That was a great political trick, but your need today to stick to that false presentation of the story only shows how much fairness in politics is valued by Liberals.

William said...

Alpha: Here's an interesting fact: Mbekei, the South African leader, believed that HIV did not cause AIDS. He thought that it was a scam of western pharmaceutical companies in order to sell expensive drugs. Aa a result of his ignorance and bigotry, some 350,000 women and children died unnecessary deaths. This fact was reported for a day in the NY Times and has since fallen into obscurity...Conservatives learn the lessons of history because liberals are constantly teaching them the lessons of history. One can argue that most whites were violently racists for much of our country's history. One cannot argue, however, that their opinions have not changed over tiime. I would give some credit to liberals for this. Books and movies like To Kill a Mockingbird did change minds. But I would also give conservatives some credit for allowing their minds to be changed......In the case of Mbekei, no liberal will ever write a play or a novel that dramatizes the suffering that this man's bigotry has inflicted on his people. The liberal position is that it is better for people of color to be ruled tyrannically by people of their own color than to be ruled prudently by people of another color. (The obvious exception is, of course, America.)......Liberals watched the ethnic cleansing of millions of Chinese from Vietnam and never even considered it an act of bigotry. They do not hate the same people that conservatives hate, and they do not hate them in the same way. But they hate.

ShadyCharacter said...

Alpha, you're wrong, of course, as to Tim McVeigh's crazy politics. That's to be expected, you really are not very smart and I wouldn't expect you to have done any actual research after I made my throw-away point above.

You ignore a couple of points, let me enumerate them and you can take them one by one:

1) Nobody in the universe claims there are no bad conservatives (I've made this as easy as possible for you to address - you should be able to hit this out of the park!).

2) Timothy McVeigh's politics were a hodgepodge of wacky socialist/racist craziness, with nothing to tie them to the American conservative movement (hint, mistrust of the government manifests across the political spectrum). Bonus tool points if your response is the classic circular "McVeigh was racist, Republicans are racist as exemplified by racists like McVeigh, thus McVeigh was a Republican".

Let's just start with those two and see where that leads us...

JSF said...

Alpha,

So, no research on something that might contricdict your views.

Again using "Closed minded" to describe Republicans does not mean what you think it means.

ricpic said...

According to Alpha & Co. there's nothing violent about burying Americans under a mountain of debt which will forever enslave them to the state. But then again it's ennobling to be "allowed" to make ever greater "contributions" to the greater good.

Maguro said...

The conservative movement today is spreading such lies and hate and almost open calls for violence and revolution that weak minds like Paplowski and McVeigh can be tempted to take violent action.

At least conservatives aren't marching through Pittsburgh is support of Paplowski like these fine progressives.

ShadyCharacter said...

Alpha, oh, and one other, I would love to see you respond to my thought experiment with regard to the serial rapist.

Please show me how what you did in real life is IN ANY WAY different from what I posited in my hypothetical.

This should be fun, you damn racist! ;)

Hoosier Daddy said...

Someone admits a mistake and then you keep bringing it up and say "see! see! You made a mistake. This one thing defines you for all time."

That's because I don't buy that it was a mistake. You just assumed based upon your preconceived belief that the shooter was a crazy right winger. So yes that defines you for all time as someone who doesn't think much about facts before speaking.

Oh, and that's Mr. HoosierAsshole to you.

ShadyCharacter said...

Alpha: Someone admits a mistake and then you keep bringing it up and say "see! see! You made a mistake. This one thing defines you for all time."

Again, I realize that a big part of your problem is that you are just not very smart, so I will try again to explain what is going on here.

Your "mistake" that you keep referring to and that will haunt you from here on out on Althouse (until you pull a Jeremy/Michael, that is) is not that you made a mistake of "fact" (i.e. the identity of the shooter), but rather that you made the mistake of letting your mask slip and revealing your THOUGHT PROCESS.

You pulled a Mel Gibson, buddy. Nobody's all that upset that Mel got drunk and yelled at a cop. What people are upset about is that what he yelled revealed him to be a closet Cedarford. I mean anti-Semite.

Once your inner toolness has been displayed, you can't hide it again (though you sure as hell gave it the old community college try, didn't you? Disappearing your own comment and only addressing it once you realized others had already preserved it. tut tut tut).

PatCA said...

So, we have a post about the vitriol of current liberalism and we get...liberal vitriol. Any criticism of Obama is bashing, we are all assholes, mass murderers, yada yada.

You have proved Paglia's point.

ShadyCharacter said...

Unaccountably Alpha appears to have fled this discussion.

Maybe she's just at lunch and will be back to address the points raised later.

In any event, there are sure to be postings by Alpha on other boards and I guess we can just re-raise this discussion in the future.

Alpha, if you read this, I really look forward to continuing this further, as I am sure you do as well.

If you do pull a Michael/Jeremy, please be so good as to let us know your new handle.

Thank you!

Hoosier Daddy said...

If you do pull a Michael/Jeremy, please be so good as to let us know your new handle.

He won't have to. It'll be obvious.

DADvocate said...

Is it possible that there might be something really ugly at the core of contemporary liberalism?

Duh.

former law student said...

the Scalia bit is excellent. Where is it from?

From a stirring dissent in which Scalia advances the proposition that tax-supported single-sex schools are Constitutional.

What's wrong with separate-but-equal, anyways? I'm sure if Althouse had gone to a special Law-School-for-Ladies, she would have advanced just as far in her profession.

Lawgiver said...

All you're doing now is berating me over a mistake I made. I know I was busy and wrote in haste that time. I admitted it. I deleted the post. That proves nothing more.

What bullshit Alpha. Deleting the post simply proves you assholeness. You got caught being an asshole and tried to erase the evidence before anyone could copy what you had said. Obviously it didn't work.

Some apology, "I made a mistake but what about Richard Poplawski?"


Note: She doesn't cite one fact to back this up!! She just makes a sweeping, sneering generalization.

Sort of like you did.

Loser.

Bruce Hayden said...

In response to the suggestion that Gov. Palin was lying, what about all the tall stories told by her opponent? Still being told by him? Is/was he lying? Or just totally disconnected with reality? (a bit scary now that he is a heartbeat away from control over our nuclear arsenal).

Bruce Hayden said...

From a stirring dissent in which Scalia advances the proposition that tax-supported single-sex schools are Constitutional.

Keep in mind that sex distinctions only require intermediate scrutiny, as compared to racial, etc. distinctions that require strict scrutiny. And there are arguably significant societal benefits from separate (but equal) education based on sex/gender. Face it. Boys and girls learn differently. Boys don't learn as well in the current female dominated and oriented public education system, esp. when competing with girls who are typically maybe two years ahead of them in development. And, yes, girls can benefit too, being able to compete without scaring off the boys they are trying to impress.

Beth said...

Paglia is a liberal, and a feminist, but like Althouse, she attracts, and feeds, a conservative audience and bases her public persona on throwing bones their way. They both play the role of inner critic and gadfly.

I tend towards what Paglia describes as liberalism that values individual rights and free expression, so I enjoy reading her, and I agree that liberalism needs more internal critique on those issues. But I scoff at her as often as I learn from her, and that whole "liberals are emotional and conservatives are fact-based" assertion still has me laughing. JAC beat me to that comment.

Bruce Hayden said...

This, of course, reminds me of the famous (mis) quote (mis) attributed to Churchill on being liberal when young, and conservative when older.

AlphaLiberal said...

More hysterical fact-free fearmongering from conservative leaders.

Glenn Beck warning us of fascism coming to the US under Obama.

Meanwhile, gun and ammo sales have gone through the roof since Obama's election and since the NRA and conservative leaders have disseminated falsehoods to the weak minds among their followers that Obama is attacking Second Amendment rights.

Meanwhile the right wing continues to hype us into civil conflict.

And Little Green Footballs provides evidence that all is not loony toons on the right:

Is it irresponsible for Fox News to be airing this over the top, creepy alarmist stuff during a financial crisis? Well, yeah, I think so.

Good for him.

Chip Ahoy said...

OMG this is hilarious. A blogger dises liberals and liberals hasten to prove her points mistaken by proving the points she makes by hastening to disprove them with vigor, acrimony, dishonesty, self-delusion, derision, absense of real humor, lack of critical analysis, flogged grievances and time-worn outdated accusations about being out of touch, tu coque, ad hominems, red herrings, fallacies, the entire realm of rhetoric, in short, how the feathers do fly! Ha ha ha. Of course it takes 20 posts each to do all that and to suck the oxygen out of any given room. I'm glad I don't know you angry little pricks in real life.

AlphaLiberal said...

ShadyCharacter, your obsession with me is a bit creepy. Give it a rest. you weren't there when I typed that post and don't know jack.

I haven't "fled this conversation," I have a life to attend to.

but tell us, have you stocked up on guns and ammo, too?

AlphaLiberal said...

Chip:

Likewise.

Bruce Hayden said...

But I scoff at her as often as I learn from her, and that whole "liberals are emotional and conservatives are fact-based" assertion still has me laughing...

What shall be quite interesting here is to see how "fact based" President Obama's "stimulus" package actually turns out to be. The same bill that was backed by most of the Democrats in Congress. Whether the Keynesian economics it is based on really does work, or if going against 70 years of economics was significantly more wishful thinking than reality.

My guess, of course, is that as a result of the feckless spending, taxing, and borrowing of the current Administration and Congress will ultimately result in a significantly lengthened recession with a real possibility of the first inflation since Carter. Calling the spending "investments" will, of course, have no bearing on whether it works as Keynes believed it would, or doesn't as more modern economics would let us think.

AlphaLiberal said...

Chip, your credibility goes out the window when you ignore vitriol like this:

"Liberalism is the religion of hate and death."

"Liberalism is the religion of control freaks."

"There is a strong anti-Semitic streak in many liberals."

etc, etc.

Nothing wrong with that tripe, right?

Bruce Hayden said...

Hey, there are wackos and extremists on the right too. LGF gets a bit much at times (which is why I rarely go there), and Beck is best known for comedic relief - though I did think that his interview with the Connecticut AG was humorous - the later unable to legally justify his investigation into AIG (essentially conceding that he was unaware of any state laws that AIG had violated, but there should have been laws on the books that they could have violated, so he was investigating).

AlphaLiberal said...

Lawgiver:
(Alphaliberal said) Note: She [Paglia] doesn't cite one fact to back this up!! She just makes a sweeping, sneering generalization.

Sort of like you did.


Not. I posted concrete examples of right wing falsehoods, as well as the current tendency of certain leaders to inflame the conservative base with fearmongering over guns being taken away, fascism, etc. I posted many links to back up these facts.

Given that reality and your inability to see it right in front of your face, I conclude you are mentally ill and not able to discern between your own fantasy world and reality.

Bruce Hayden said...

"Liberalism is the religion of control freaks."

I do agree with that, though not with the other statements that AL is criticizing. The socialist, etc. strand of current liberal/progressive thought presupposes state control over many facets of our lives. And, those at the top in liberal circles seem to believe that they are uniquely qualified to provide this control and direction.

Let me suggest that if we were to take the major political issues of the day, one by one, we would find that, with the exception of abortion on demand, the liberal side is almost invariably the side pushing for more federal involvement and control, as compared to the conservative side of those issues.

Beth said...

Bruce, remember voodoo economics? Economics isn't a science, it's guesswork. If you're arguing that there's some primary "liberal/emotional" and "conservative/fact-based" dichotomy to economic theory, well, that's wishful thinking.

Beth said...

LGF strikes me as one of those blogs where the blogger is pretty sensible and his commenters are all over the place with a hefty dose of rightwing whackos. I stopped reading the comments years ago, but I'll check the blog a couple of times a week.

Now, Freepers and Daily World Nuts - them's a whole 'nuther bunch of fact-based, fair-play types altogether.

AlphaLiberal said...

Here's a funny prebuttal to Paglia's fallacious lionizing of conservatives:

At What Point Did Republicans Become the Party of Bed-Wetting Hysterics?

"James Delk and his namesake son say that they’ve bought more ammo and supplies not just because they fear what might become illegal under Obama, but because they fear what could happen in an unarmed, increasingly economically disparate society. “I stocked up on food a little bit,” says the elder James Delk. “I’ve got one bedroom I converted into a food pantry. If it keeps getting worse, and it seems like it is, people are going to start breaking into your home to get food. You need to try to protect your family.”"

Oh, and Palin has declared Alaska a "sovereign state!" Fact-based! Right Camille?
"I am deeply concerned with North Korea’s development and testing program which has clear potential of impacting Alaska, a sovereign state of the United States, with a potentially nuclear armed warhead,”

Priceless.

madawaskan said...

Did anyone read the end of the question that Camille Paglia was answering?

Here it is:

In the meantime, the torching of Sarah Palin's church in Alaska (children were inside when the fire with accelerant was set) evokes a collective shrug in the mainstream media and other liberal precincts (if you can find any reference to the event at all). Why the all-too-frequent and downright nasty face of contemporary liberalism?

How many of us even knew that this happened?

How many of us would have heard about this 24/7 if it was done to the church that the Democrat vice presidential candidate was strongly identified with?

That's the thing.

The media is overwhelmingly on the side of Liberals.

Yet they have to crush Althouse, Paglia and any Conservative blog that believes in free speech.

Having the 24/7 media blaring their talking points, major newspapers,Hollywood, women's magazines, the Comedy Central shows, the late night talk shows, the literati as Paglia calls them isn't enough...

Beth, and JAC have to "share" their condescension and the other liberals have to create white noise.

Won't we all just shut up!

They might have to question things!

Can't have that!

Beth said...

Madawaskan, so when JAC and I or others speak, it's an attempt to suppress someone? What are you blathering about?

Beth said...

A quick Google search shows the Palin church fire covered on CNN, Huffington Post, Fox, a bunch of newspapers...not a very effective cover-up, huh?

ShadyCharacter said...

Beth, I'm going to pull a David Letterman interviewing Bill O'Reilly on you: you're way too smart to think that Palin's church burning was covered with anything near the obsessiveness that the media would have lathered on if Trinity had been burned. You are allowed to be intellectually honest you know.


Alpha, I hope you enjoyed your lunch and living your life. Now that you've finished both and are back on this board, how about you engage in the discussion that's raging about your moral idiocy?

You probably just overlooked my conveniently enumerated points you haven't yet addressed:

1) Nobody in the universe claims there are no bad conservatives (I've made this as easy as possible for you to address - you should be able to hit this out of the park!).

2) Timothy McVeigh's politics were a hodgepodge of wacky socialist/racist craziness, with nothing to tie them to the American conservative movement (hint, mistrust of the government manifests across the political spectrum). Bonus tool points if your response is the classic circular "McVeigh was racist, Republicans are racist as exemplified by racists like McVeigh, thus McVeigh was a Republican".

3) Distinguish your actions from "The Hypo": Prominent news story - "Serial Rapist at Large, details at 11".

AlphaLiberal posts the following: "Just goes to show those damn black people always raping and whatnot, it's just in their nature".

Then as facts develop and the rapist turns out to be white, Alpha "retracts" his comment and says, "I'm absolved, right?" and then goes on to say - "Everyone knows lots of black people are rapists after all, so I wasn't really wrong in a general sense, just in this instance"...

Lawgiver said...

Alpha,

How very typical of modern conservatives today - they are getting emotional screaming that Obama wants to take their guns, that Obama is a fascist, a socialist, that he wants to put people in education camps.

That was you first sweeping, sneering generalization on this thread. Backing it up with links to LGF and CNN doesn't support your generalization of what "typical conservatives" believe.

Is it too hard for you to understand that you're doing the same thing you accuse Paglia of doing?

Freeman Hunt said...

"Is it possible that there might be something really ugly at the core of contemporary liberalism?"

Yes, the desire to control the individual and the exaltation of the collective.

madawaskan said...

Beth-

Did you know about it before now?

Try to be honest.

The coverage would have been vastly different if it was Obama's church with kids in it.

The church's of Palin and Obama were the stories before the election.

If Biden was criticized about his particular church and his "different" church had been set fire to while kids were in it-that would have been covered differently too. You know it.

You had to do a google search to "verify" the story. I'm sure you were going to question the voracity of the claim had you not found confirmation of it.

ShadyCharacter said...

Lawgiver, it IS too hard for Alpha to understand.

As has been demonstrated on this board and every other board Alpha has participated in, Alpha is an absurdly stupid person.

When she (he?) attempts to engage in discourse, we are treated to "vigor, acrimony, dishonesty, self-delusion, derision, absense of real humor, lack of critical analysis, flogged grievances and time-worn outdated accusations about being out of touch, tu coque, ad hominems, red herrings, fallacies" as so eloquently explained by Chip.

Now for many of these trolls the goal is to simply disrupt a board where conservatives may be present - thus the absurdity of their posts serves a higher goal.

Unfortunately, Alpha is a different type of creature. She is trying VERY VERY hard to engage in the discussions that she only half-understands and her postings here are the result. I'd take pity on her, but she is as malicious as she is stupid.

Therefore, I've decided to make it a point to keep her moral idiocy on the front burner from now until I get tired of it.

madawaskan said...

On to the Timothy McVeigh spin-

Alpha

If you'll own every criminal that gets let off the hook because supposedly he is insane or an addict and misunderstood by big bad Conservatives-

Then you can have your "winning" argument.

Beth said...

Yes, I saw that story at the time it was reported. I used Google to confirm it for you.

I'd say your speculation about what would have happened if x was the case is a good example of emotional thinking, not fact-based.

ShadyCharacter said...

Beth, I'll David Letterman you again. There is no way in the world that you actually believe what you're saying.

Here's the thing though. Who do you think you're fooling? Nobody really believes you believe what you're saying. All this is doing is diminishing you.

Well, it's your choice.

Beth said...

SC, there are pages and pages of stories on the church fire. I expect it will be back in the news when or if they make an arrest. If someone set a fire at the door of the Chicago church Obama attended? It would sure be in the news, of course. As is this. To argue that no one knew about this, that it wasn't covered, as madawaskan did, is not intellectually dishonest, it's just plain inaccurate. I'm not going to play the conservative whine game where "If BUSH had done it" or some variation thereof becomes the meme. But thanks again, it's a great counterexample to Paglia's description of conservative thinking.

madawaskan said...

Beth-

Sorry but I think it would have been covered 24/7 if the labels were changed.

You don't think it would have been covered differently if it had been Obama's church?

I never, ever heard the story and I'm kind of a political junkie.

The questioner of Paglia has the same perspective, and by deduction Paglia shares that view because she doesn't refute it she goes on to add support to that argument.

peter hoh said...

madawaskan, I knew of the arson as well, but I can't tell you where I read about it. I know that I saw it in several places soon after it happened.

ShadyCharacter said...

Pages and pages of internet results is your defense for your sloppy thinking?

"I'm not going to play the conservative whine game where "If BUSH had done it" or some variation thereof becomes the meme."

This gets to the crux of things. You are unwilling to concede Madawaskan's point, which you almost certainly actually agree with (you're not an idiot after all), but because it would be counter-productive from a rhetorical tactical standpoint, you are unwilling to bend. You don't want to give any credence to the "conservative whine game" as you term it.

You are willing to stand there and assert the sun rises in the West (that is, that mainstream media coverage of Bush and Obama is equivalent), uncaring that it makes you appear a few pears short of an orchard.

Again, this is your choice.

madawaskan said...

peter hoh-

Well again I missed it, the questioner says it was barely covered, and Paglia doesn't disagree with that.

Seriously-you think the coverage would have been the same had it been Obama's church that was burned while kds were inside?

Obama's church was used to differentiate him during the campaign the same as Palin's had been used against her.

You say you read it in a newspaper-but did you see it on 24/7 media?

You don't think had the situation been reversed that the media would have repeated the story every hour on the hour?

ShadyCharacter said...

Beth, I will add that despite your assertion that every "conservative" post on this board disproves Paglia's point and shows conservatives are equally "emotion based", it is in fact your posts that are the most revealing.

You are an intelligent and eminently reasonable liberal participant in Althouse's blog. However, EVEN YOU (an English professor ;> just kidding) are willing to resort to dishonest debating tactics in your responses to Madawaskan. Where's that "sports-bassed sense of fair play"?

Beth said...

despite your assertion that every "conservative" post on this board disproves Paglia's point

I didn't assert that, SC.

Beth said...

I don't care if Paglia accepts her commenter's assertion about the story. What I know is that I saw it in the news, when it happened. A review using Google confirms my memory. I'm not avoiding agreeing with Madawaskan, because I don't agree. Once Obama cut ties with his church, it dropped out of the news coverage. A fire might have brought it back in, but I have no reason to believe it would have been covered any differently than this one. Nor do you, other than your adherance to the dogma of speculation that drives so many silly conversations online.

Contrary to the commenter's assertion to Paglia, the story wasn't covered up. It was on all the major networks and cable news channels. It was in the papers. There are stories throughout more than a week in December.

ShadyCharacter said...

That's true you didn't assert that.

You did assert that Madawaskan's "speculation" that coverage would have been different in different contexts (which I think is readily apparent) was evidence of emotion-based thinking, which I think was dishonest.

ShadyCharacter said...

Beth, have you heard of the concept of "damning with faint praise". I'm guessing you have. I'm no wordsmith, but I think we could come up with something like "concealing with faint coverage" to describe the disparity between the treatment of Republican and Democrat scandals/triumphs...

I realize now that you have a visceral dislike of hypotheticals, but let's try one on for size.

Let's say we were living in the Atlanta of the 1920's and a white man has been killed by a black man. Every paper in Georgia covers this sensational crime on the front page for weeks. The radio in the corner of the living room breathlessly brings you every breaking development in the case.

Let's say the same day a white man kills a black man. It's reported in a two sentence squib on page 4 one day.

It's true that both were covered.

Here's where I'm going to blow your mind. For the most part, REPUBLICANS are the black man in this story and DEMOCRATS are the white man. If you can't see that, it's not because that isn't the reality. It's because you are the unthinkingly, reflexively racist white citizen of 1920's Atlanta in this little story. I'd say it's not your fault, but it kind of is. You're smart enough to think outside your preconceptions and biases (I've seen you do it).

There were white people who recognized the inequity back then. You'd think there would be more liberals today (such as Paglia) who would be willing to recognize the reality of today.

Unless Paglia's got her fellow liberals pegged right of course. And I'm starting to think she has...

peter hoh said...

madawaskan, you asked: Seriously-you think the coverage would have been the same had it been Obama's church that was burned while kds were inside?

Your question is phrased in a way that suggests that I made that claim. I did not.

I don't know what that kind of argument is called, but I happen to dislike the "It would have been totally different if . . ." masquerading as a legitimate line of argument. It's an unprovable assertion.

A whole lot of things go into how much something is covered. What else was going on that week, for instance. Then there's the issue of how much damage was done. And the media market in Wasilla is completely different than the media market in Chicago.

So yeah, would coverage have been different? Of course, because the circumstances would have been different.

Unlike your hypothetical, which remains in the never-can-be-proved clouds, your claim that this story was not covered has been refuted. Are you going to admit that?

peter hoh said...

And just to be clear, Alpha has no credibility. I missed the thread in which he knee-jerked, but he did, and he has not been able to clear himself (or herself) with the "I was in a hurry" claim.

Shady Character is right: you pulled a Mel Gibson. In haste, veritas.

ShadyCharacter said...

Peter, I'm afraid that like Beth you are being obdurant.

You accuse Madawaskan of making an unprovable assertion, and in (only) the strictest sense you are correct. But I believe you are making a fundamentally dishonest argument.

Mad is simply applying historical precedent to the case in point. He's not operating in a theoretical vacuum (identical context is only achievable in a lab setting). Instead he's operating in reality and has recourse to dozens if not hundreds, if not thousands, if not tens of thousands (I don't know how old Mad is!) of cases of media double standards.

Larry Craig taps his foot and Mark Foley sends a text (in neither case is a sausage ever enbunned, if I may coin a phrase) and the "nation" (the press anyway) is entranced for weeks. Around the same time Democratic presidential candidate John "will channel dead babies for cash" Edwards successfully places a bun in his mistresses oven (I'm getting confused by my own metaphor) and it takes the National Enquirer getting a picture of Edwards and the woman and the baby getting family portraits made before the press will even reluctantly mention the scandal. That's just one small example, out of literally hundreds of millions across the nation every year (that's not hyperbole. I saw a report about a rigorous scientific study once. As Alpha often argues, prove that isn't true!).

Which would get more coverage in the 1870s media, a black man raping a white woman or a white man raping a black woman?

You say the first? Ha! You can't speak to that because you don't know all the context...

peter hoh said...

madawaskan, you asked: You say you read it in a newspaper-but did you see it on 24/7 media?

Well, I didn't say that I read it in a newspaper. I only get the local paper on Sunday (coupons and comics!) so it might not have been there.

I don't have cable, so the whole 24/7 CNN stuff is off my radar. I watch the local news in the evening, and I catch Nightline somewhat regularly.

Most of my reading is online.

By the way, Townhall.com is turning up a lot of false results, but it appears that they only had one post about the arson.

peter hoh said...

Shady, please tell me what argument you think I'm being dishonest about.

ShadyCharacter said...

Peter, you're a sneaky one. You make several "true" points that add up to a misleading conclusion. That makes it very hard to simply cut and paste, damn you! :)

1) You advance Beth's argument that comparing coverage of any two events (or an event to a hypothetical) is impossible (apples and oranges) - an "unproveable assertion". It's TRUE that no two events are identical. But it's also misleading. Hopefully you won't make me rewrite my overwrought 1870s hypothetical again!

2) You reduce Mad's point to a claim that there was NO coverage of the church burning. And then you challenge him to admit that his point was refuted. Unless I missed it in my quick review, he made no such claim.

That's pretty much it. I didn't say you were a bad person! In fact, given that you agreed with my assessment of Alpha, I kind of like you now.

peter hoh said...

Shady, fair point. I was incorrect to suggest that madawaskan claimed that there was no coverage. My bad.

Madawaskan reacted to Beth's claim that she heard about the arson with: Did you know about it before now? Try to be honest.

That remark suggests that madawaskan believes that there was such little coverage that it would be unusual for Beth to have heard about it.

That's the claim that I have been disputing.

I have not been making any argument about media bias.

While Bill Clinton was fooling around with Monica Lewinsky, Newt Gingrich was carrying on his own affair. By your standards, I can claim that the media is biased against liberals because Clinton's actions received far more coverage than Gingrich's.

Just kidding.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

No, the conservatives will not discuss that case of the cop-killing, gun-loving conservative

Crazy people come in all stripes, colors and political persuasions. There is no point in discussing their crazyness in political terms.

No one group has a monopoly on crazy, however it does seem that the left leans a bit towards being less tightly wrapped when it comes to logic and critical thinking.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

If you're arguing that there's some primary "liberal/emotional" and "conservative/fact-based" dichotomy to economic theory, well, that's wishful thinking.

Actually it isn't. Liberals want to use economics to accomplish political and social engineering goals. They look at it "as if only we could make the economy do what we want we can create utopia".

Conservative economists look upon it as a discipline that just is. Economics is/should be impartial and unemotional. There are no judgemental connotations that recession=bad and must be averted at all costs. In fact many economists know that recession, expansion, peak, trough are all natural parts of the business cycle. Not evil or good. And certainly not to be overtly manipulated for political gain, to garner votes or to accomplish social engineering as Obama is doing at this very moment.

Skyler said...

Zach wrote: How many strikes in your lifetime have dealt with hazardous working conditions? Have there even been any? There's OSHA nowadays, after all.

To be fair, a lot of industry nowadays is still quite dangerous. It's not the big three car makers or large industry that is typically a problem. It's the small or medium sized heavy industry or even light industry that is hiring the cheapest labor and spending as little as possible to build and maintain their factories. There is still a lot of danger. Trust me on that one, I've seen in and lived it.

But I've not seen a union do much about it. They're more concerned with manipulating management and throwing their weight around than in ensuring that systematic safety devices are installed.

William said...

Shady: For what it's worth, I think your points have been telling and convincing. Your phrase "concealing with faint coverage" deserves wider currency. The books, plays, movies, award winning documentaries will always be about some right wing atrocity. The sins of the left will make the paper for a day and then disappear. Perhaps that is why the right evolves and the left becomes ever more sodden. For every right wing high school teacher who believes in creationism, I will spot you a thousand college professors who believe that Marxism is the science of economics.

JAL said...

Re Obama and guns:

There is a gut, knee jerk reaction of libeals to guns; handguns, rifles, whatever.

It is emotional.

More people are killed and maimed terribly annually in America by alcohol fueled humans then are by guns.

Ban alcohol!

Didn't think so.

And there is more than one way to skin a cat, as they say. Anyone know who is behind the DOD decision not to resell used military brass to the ammunition (re)manufacturers?

While it is true that there is hoarding going on, it is also because there is an impending spike in the price of ammo due to a peculiar shift in policy.

So where is the used brass going? China? South America? Mexico?

peter jackson said...

The arrogance of the left is derivative of their absolute, religious certitude. Think about it: since the fall of the Soviet Union and world communism, when was the last time you heard or read a leftist argue for one of their policies in good faith?

madawaskan said...

Shady-

Damn but you are good.

Hey, I'm old enough to know when to step aside and let the better guy run with it.

PD Quig said...

After reading all the comments, there remains but a single question: does AlphaLiberal eat and sleep, or is this blog's comment thread her raison d'etre?

Driven to stave off the argumentative advances of vile conservatives on every issue, like a pajama-clad Jack Bauer, she relentlessly patrols the comments section, never eating, never sleeping, pouncing on the slightest logical slip, refuting each poor, abused fact deployed in the service of conservatism.

Alpha indeed, although omega might be the more appropriate slot.

Bruce Hayden said...

Actually it isn't. Liberals want to use economics to accomplish political and social engineering goals. They look at it "as if only we could make the economy do what we want we can create utopia".

I, am not a Utopian, but mostly, I think from a pragmatic point of view. Sure, I wouldn't mind a better world or country to live in.

But the reality is that they can't make the economy do what they want it to. Maybe some day in the distant future. But surely not now. Calling massive spending on every imaginable liberal pet project "investment" doesn't make it so. Rather, it just hides the fact that it is deficit spending from the least well informed in this country.

The various brands of socialism, ranging from communism, through fascism, Naziism, etc., all attempt to create a Utopia through centralized planning. And they all presuppose that man is smart enough to plan such a Utopian society. Force, unfortunately, may be necessary, in the short run, to help the unenlightened masses learn to live unselfishly in such a society. But the police state will wither on the vine when those masses finally do acclimate.

This ignores three small truths. First, man is by his very nature, greedy and naturally willing to sacrifice the good of society for his own good, and that of his family, tribe, etc. Secondly, there will always be orders of magnitude more and better brains on the opposite side of and trying to subvert the central planners for their own selfish goals. And, third, those at the top in such a central planning or socialist society are just as selfish as every one else, they are just using their insider status to enrich themselves. We saw that with the Soviet elites, the leaders right now in North Korea, and in the present Administration and Congress.

Big Mike said...

I worked hard and late today so I just got around to checking out the blogs tonight.

@PD Quig, I have an alternate hypothesis for you. Back in the 1970's some artificial intelligence researchers at Stanford built a program called "Parry" that could mimic a human paranoid schizophrenic. Apparently it did a pretty good job of responding to free form questions and comments posed by human therapists so that it could qualify as a training tool for psychiatrists. Or so its developers claimed. I saw the transcripts of some of its sessions, and my only thought at the time was that it was too good -- its paranoia was too exposed, without dissembling.

Given the advances in computing power and algorithms in the past 35 years it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if someplace some grad students in AI didn't create our old friend "Alpha" by adapting Parry or some descendant thereof with a new belief set and give him (it) free rein to go invade right-of-center threads. It wouldn't take a very sophisticated belief set to build an automated AlphaLiberal. How about it, Alpha? What's your address? Some computer lab on some campus? SAIL or CSAIL, perhaps? There's a finite nonzero change of CIS, I suppose.

Simple rules to let you be AlphaLiberal:
(1) Try to refocus the discussion on some fine point, and get people debating a sapling instead of discussing the forest.

(2) Demand specifics. If specifics are provided then either demand more specifics or sneeringly dismiss them.

(3) If things aren't going your way, then try to change the subject.

(4) If somebody writes something a bit out there (e.g., zedzded @ 8:18) then jump all over it and try to use it as a brush to tar everybody who disagrees with you. (This is actually a good technique to combine with #3.)

(5) Deny, deny, deny

(6) If caught, and denials aren't working then "I wrote in haste because I was busy" is a useful lifeline.

How about it, Alpha? Are you a form of Turing Test? If so, then you lose. If not, then can I suggest you get some help?

Big Mike said...

@Freder, back when I was trying to work my way through college (possible back in the 1960's and 1970's -- no prayer of that today) I worked in union shops. I've seen cases where the walkouts were justified, but I've also seen enough cases when -- as near as I can tell -- the shop steward just wanted to demonstrate his clout.

The level of mistrust struck me then, and strikes me now, as being absurd. Don't the workers know that if they bring down the company then they're out of work just the same as the hated management? But, especially, God help the "enlightened" manager who tries to engage his workers constructively. That's who the hardcore union workers really hate and really work to get rid of.

Don't tell me that doesn't happen. Been there. Saw that. I don't want to have to call you a liar but I surely will.

jsmith said...

The irony of just about every one of AlphaLiberal's posts is fantastic, though it does get to be a bit much in such a concentrated form. But the obtuseness with respect to the post on the NY shooter is hilarious, and really beyond belief.

But this is great--

Oh, and Palin has declared Alaska a "sovereign state!" Fact-based! Right Camille?

What a unique, crazy, faith-based viewpoint that wacky Palin has.

It's not like it would be shared by, say, the rational, reality-based governor of the State of Wisconsin.

Let alone a District Court of the United States.

And Lord knows that a state's sovereignty would never be referenced by the Supreme Court of the United States of America.

Fact based! Right, AlphaLiberal?

Priceless.

Skookum John said...

The nut cases on the right are on the uneducated fringe, but on the left they sport Ivy League degrees

Hey, I've got an Ivy League degree, a doctorate no less, and I take a back seat to nobody in my fire-breathing right-wing nuttery.

mrs whatsit said...

Is it possible that there might be something really ugly at the core of contemporary liberalism?

There's certainly nothing really ugly on THIS thread. No name-calling, stereotyping, leaping to conclusions based on no facts, ad hominem attacks, irrationality, nope nope, nothing like that at all. Move along now, nothing to be seen here.

Yeesh. I'm going back to the penguins.