A university is just a group of buildings gathered around a library. ~Shelby Foote

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Irony Alert

Went browsing through some of the blogs that tc links to from his own blog (How come you took the link down to my blog, tc? Surely having a link to one, small, fairly reasonable right-of-center blog wouldn't hurt.). At times, interesting, at times discouraging, and at other times laughable. What I almost universally found was venom, snark, and virtually no humor. Perhaps tc just links to the hardcorest of the left-wing blogs (could be), but these people really need to lighten up. Snark is not the same as humor folks-- or rather, it is a pale, bitter, angry form of humor that does little or nothing to improve one's mood or provide perspective. Snark is one of those things that should be enjoyed in moderation, leavened with large quantities of actual funny bits.

But I digress. Irony. Right. One of the over-arching themes I found at most of the blogs was a decrying of how horribly close-minded, intolerant, and generally bad are we of a conservative bent. And, of course, by contrast how open-minded, tolerant, and generally good are those of a liberal bent. Such claims generally preceding, or sometimes following, extended rants about how various conservative worldviews, or personalities, are idiotic, unworthy of mention, completely without merit, and generally to be disparaged and dismissed with barely a sniff. The potential conflict between claiming to be open-minded and then dismissing all but their own perspectives as invalid and worthless never seems to occur to any of them. Which is deliciously ironic, and rather funny in a sad sort of way. I should also mention, before bringing out some of my favorites, that this is by no means limited to the left-- lgf and powerline both engage in this type of thing as well as I'm sure many other right-wing blogs do-- but I just happened to be browsing left-wing blogs.

From alicublog:
They [conservatives] have no idea what art is. The closest thing to it in their universe is propaganda, so they assume art is just a species of that. (Sometimes they're accidentally right, of course, but having no aesthetics, they cannot make informed judgements.) Therefore any work of art that contains something they find viscerally objectionable -- in Kurtz' case, acts of love that do not involve one man, one woman, and (it would seem) one or fewer orgasms -- is analyzed and denounced as if it were a piece of legislation or a policy paper.

So of course many of them no longer bother to watch the things they denounce: why should they bother?

Another reason to be grateful, folks, in this holiday season: that you don't see the world through so pinched a gaze.
Notable for the sheer breadth of the claim. Conservatives (all of them) have "no idea what art is," and "no aesthetics." Notice also the subtle working in of "propoganda" (all that we conservatives know of art) and our inability to "make informed judgements." Beautiful-- now anything a conservative says can be disregarded because all we know about is propoganda and we are incapable of making informed judgements. But we're the ones seeing the world through "so pinched a gaze."

I would be remiss if I didn't include James Wolcott since he may well be the king of transference and irony:
The dainty stench of burnt envy drew me to the comments section of Little Green Footballs, where I found my reputation and personhood under mass grubworm assault. I don't know you've ever ventured into the subterranean underworld that is LGF's comments section, but it's sort of like a disorganized Nuremberg Rally, a lot of angry ruffians with nowhere to go lacking something better to do.

The catalyst for this impromptu rally was my clinical diagnosis of Daniel Pipes as "a patronizing little shit," which seemed to displease the footballers, not that any of them bothered to acquaint themselves with the causus belli (Pipes' pipsqueak character smear of Muhammed Ali). Then again, the poor dears don't seem to know the difference between an ocelot and an ocicat, another indictment of the limitations of home schooling.

Note particularly the phrases: "poor dears," "mass grubworm," "angry ruffians," "limitations of home schooling." But Pipes is the "patronizing little shit." Uh huh. Worthy entry for the sheer pot/kettle moment of James Wolcott acusing someone else of being patronizing.

A short, "pithy" one from Suburban Guerilla:

Yeah, Digby’s right. Why the hell do Democrats insist on their discredited belief it’s all about wonkified content? This is show biz, folks. Republicans are from the sales and marketing culture. They get it.

Cuts right to the heart of it, don't you think? Democrats = substance, Republicans = marketing. All in five short sentences that contain no substance to support the allegation. Brilliant!

I could go on, but you get the idea.


yeah, wolcott's got a special place in your heart, doesn't he?
I'm calling foul. your post made the inference that Wolcott's site is on my blogroll; it isn't.
Wolcott does have a special place, you're right. Perhaps its the same sort of way Lileks strikes you. Condescending, sniveling, patronizing, over-written hack who has the transcedent gall to accuse others of the very things he is so glaringly guilty of.

And I apologize-- you're right, you don't link to Wolcott. I think one of the people you link to links to Wolcott, because I got there, albeit it indirectly, from your blog links.
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