Monday, November 06, 2006

Times Echoes

A distinct subculture, a belief system if not a religion, exists in the United States. Its members draw their instruction on what to believe and how to live from the New York Times. I call them the Times Echoes. They exist in urban social ecosystems all across American.

There are certain people you never forget. One is a man I knew who was an anomaly in more ways than one. He was a politically conservative Jewish septuagenarian living in Westchester County, NY, within the gravitational pull of the Den of Iniquity (that would be NYC). Possessing a genius IQ and intrepidity to match, on more than one occasion he told me of a technique he used when debating liberals. He'd say, "I can tell you what you believe on any issue. Name for me any issue, and I'll tell you what your position is." Not that he claimed powers of divination. He explained, "I can do this because I know they get their beliefs from the New York Times. All I have to do is open the Times, and that's what they believe."

This came to mind when I read Clay Waters' piece on Timeswatch, "Richard Berke Bashes Blogs that Criticize the Times." Reporting on an event called Times Talk, at the New York Historical Society in Manhattan, Waters writes,

. . . what struck me was the condescending and sometimes paranoid liberalism of the audience questioners. Of the seven or eight audience members who addressed the panel, none said anything that could be remotely construed as Republican or even moderate. Instead, the panelists got foreboding questionings of whether Bush believed in democracy and whether Red State folk are as ignorant as they are because they don't read the New York Times.

Don't think this is unusual. For instance, I remember another septuagenarian, a woman I engaged in a political debate. She was an avid reader of the Times and when I asked her if she believed everything contained therein, her response was "yes." When I asked why, I was informed that it was because the people who write for them are "very intelligent."

To Times Echoes, the Times isn't merely an information source. It isn't even just the newspaper of record. It is an oracle, an inerrant purveyor of wisdom, compared to which the Bible pales. But the Times Echo is most certainly human. Although, if Christian theology is correct that it's intellect and free will that separate man from the animal kingdom, perhaps just barely so.

If you're offended by the Times Echo's query about ignorant Red Staters, don't be. Despite their delusion that they're possessed of sophistication, Times Echoes are the most callow, provincial of creatures. You see, they don't actually interact with people from the hinterlands and consider sufficient study of the latter's culture to be a screening of Deliverance.

More here


"Spoilt Brat" Democrats

We're a country at war. Even if we could grant the cut-and-run caucus its fondest wish and remove our presence from Iraq on November 8, we would still be a country at war. The sad fact is there are millions of very dangerous people who loathe us and intend us great harm.

One can make arguments that the administration should have prosecuted the war differently. On the right side of our political spectrum, there is currently a spirited debate regarding the quality of the Bush administration's efforts, Donald Rumsfeld's value, troop levels in Iraq and what to do about Iran, Syria and North Korea. But what you don't see on the political right or in the Republican Party is denial. You don't see a childish worldview that American withdrawal will make us safe. You see a grim if often unstated acknowledgement of our distressing reality - we're in for a long war, and there will be a lot more blood spilled on all sides before it is done.

On the Democratic side, all you see is a blissful lack of awareness of that reality. Whenever you hear a Democratic politician whine for the involvement of the global community or some other simplistic claptrap plan that will purportedly bring an instant end to the world's turmoil, you're seeing the evidence of spoiled-brat thinking that holds that even the most intractable problems can be solved easily and painlessly. Were it only so. Even if the Democrats don't realize it, we're all going to have to roll up our sleeves and get dirty before this war is won.

They are not just wrong, but dangerously misguided. Iran doesn't want peace. The Syrian Baathists don't want peace. The fundamentalist terror groups like Al Qaeda, Hamas and Hezbollah don't want peace. Nor does the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt or millions of fanatical Salafists in Saudi Arabia. We have a lot of malefactors out there, and they're not going to be mollified by a "more sensitive" war on terror.

We can only wish denial was the modern left's biggest problem. They actually believe that America mid-wifed terrorism and Radical Islam. They view America as the bad guy and American actions as the deus ex machina that made the world the dangerous place it is today. You can try to talk such people out of their views by pointing to the Muslim Brotherhood of the Saudi Salafists who have had global dreams of conquest before George W. Bush came out of the oil fields. But that just confuses them - they've never heard of either entity and thus figure they surely don't matter.

You can then try to reduce the argument to the simple facts that the first attack on the World Trade Center, the bombing of the embassies, the attack on the Cole and 9/11 all happened BEFORE the current Iraq war. But even that doesn't register. They refuse to relinquish the mindset that America caused its own problems.

In a way, this viewpoint serves them as a security blanket of sorts. Their simplistic logic holds that if American actions caused all our problems, then a reversal of course could make all those problems vanish. Thus, they focus on a the evils of the "Rethuglicans", which is surely a more pleasant mental exercise than picturing what we're actually going to have to go through before this country and the world are safe..... what the Democratic Party has transformed itself into leaves us little choice but to crawl over broken glass on Tuesday if necessary to pull the lever for Republicans.

The Democrats have made it clear to their supporters that they will use whatever power they accumulate to attack domestic demons. At this point in history, we can't afford to have such misguided and unserious people in charge of anything consequential. It's all something of a shame. If you read the leftwing blogs, you know they've got hate by the boatload. It's too bad that hate can't be channeled at the people who hate them back, the ones screaming for Jihad and pining for their deaths.

More here



"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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