Of cows, Goebbels, and goosestepping morons (UPDATE) Posted by: McQ
on Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Some blog called "Preemptive Karma", which bills itself as a place where "sacred cows are slaughtered daily" has taken this "winger" to task for 'grousing' about MoveOn.org. The post to which she objected is found here.
Now I have to admit, for the most part, I'm all for sacred cow slaughtering. But I do set some conditions. A) there must be a cow involved and b) that cow actually should be sacred. Straw cows, however, need not apply.
So when I read this I immediately thought, here's someone who is confused about what is or isn't a cow, much less what's sacred:
I noticed this grouse from a winger blog framing MoveOn as having an "anti-war agenda".
Obviously this isn't the first time MoveOn has been cast this way. Nor I suspect will it be the last.
Now I'm not particularly offended by being called a "winger". In fact, there are few weeks that go by that I'm not characterized somewhere as being a 'winger'. I've come to view it as a term of endearment, much like the term PIG which was adopted (co-opted?) by the police of the '60s and '70s.
That said, it seems to me that most of the left has become unimaginative to the point or resorting to cliche. Anyone who holds an opinion different than them is always a "winger". It kind of loses its sting when it is applied to everything from soup to nuts. You'd think the more creative among the "progressive" community would attempt to find some way out of the pejorative wasteland and come up with some new, and, perhaps, even clever names to call their opponents.
But, back to the post in question. What I found amusing is the blogger in question here had to strain mightily to infer my quoting the Politico characterization of MoveOn.org as an "anti-war" group is somehow untrue.
She says it's not the first time they've been cast that way. On review, that's about the only thing in her whole piece she gets right.
What's funny though is even a cursory glance at the MoveOn web site finds all sorts of indications that they are indeed "anti-war". One has to wonder how Carla has missed the obvious indicators.
For instance there's the "Out of Iraq Petition". Then we find the "Virtual March Against Escalation". Oh, my goodness, there's a political action alert (where's MyDD when you need them?) in which John McCain's support for the escalation and the war are targeted. Why they've even put an ad together attacking him and his stance. And then, of course, there's the headliner on the site about their ad charging Republicans with dodging debate on Iraq.
But clearly, given all of that, no fair minded person could ever begin to think that MoveOn.org was an "anti-war" group.
Obviously then that pseudo objection was simply a vehicle to get to the point on which Carla really wanted to pontificate:
Its interesting though how an "anti-war agenda" is, to the author of that piece, an inherently bad thing—inferring that a "pro-war agenda" is good and righteous.
I inferred that? Geez and here I thought I was simply reporting on the fact that right side of the political spectrum was organizing as had the left side, with an advocacy group aimed at supporting the war. They took a lesson from the relative success of MoveOn.org on the other side of the issue.
That somehow was morphed by this lady into all sorts of inferences and characterizations which, to my tired old eyes, have still to emerge.
I mean who knew I was inferring that it's "inherently bad" to be "anti-war" when I wrote the story? Especially from a guy who was dead set against our war in the Balkans.
Then Carla gives us the standard disclaimer which, she assumes, buys her credibility when she denounces all things concerning war:
I get that sometimes war is necessary.
Of course she does. Reminds me of the "I support troops but not the war" meme that is so beloved of those who call themselves 'anti-war'. However most of us recognize attempts to rhetorically inoculate one's self from criticism with transparent ploys such as this. And as you might guess, most of us reject them.
But this labeling has moved way beyond that now, obviously. This is about the promotion of war as a glorious and laudable effort—while efforts at peace are to be held in the highest contempt.
OK, first big belly laugh.
What labeling is that Carla? "Winger" or the others which we'll get too soon?
With all due respect to Carla, her analysis moves to new heights of ludicrousness at this point. I mean I can infer a lot of things from what people say, but I actually try to keep such inferences within the bounds of reality. Is that too much to ask of a member of the "reality based" community?
Where in the world does one extract an inference from my report on a new advocacy group that I was instead writing something which was, "about the promotion of war as a glorious and laudable effort—while efforts at peace are to be held in the highest contempt."
That's simply absurd. It's also sad and pathetic. She has to strain that hard to make something out of nothing to push her agenda?
There's no such inference in that story anywhere. But that doesn't stop our intrepid but ethically challenged scribe from continuing to invent inferences:
I suppose its all a part of the larger agenda of rightwing political ideologists—but its all so very Goebbelsesque.
Oh, man ... do I have to actually call Goodwin's law? Yeesh speaking of labels... "Goebbelsesque?"
Not only is it awkward, it's so unimaginative. Apparently, in the fever pits of the left, merely mentioning that an anti-war organization is anti-war is akin to engaging in Nazi propaganda. Oh, the humanity.
Not being a goosestepping moron, I've never been one to buy in to propaganda—especially when its shoved down my throat with threats of "the boogeyman will get you" or "it will give the people around you the vapors". Maybe that's why I'm willing to cut through the bullsh*t lining this blog (and so many other rightwing shills) are laying down as premise.
Well she may be right about the "goosestepping" portion, but as I read her post, I wasn't at all sure the second characterization wasn't dead-on. And try as I might, I've been unable to find the passage in my post in which that "boogeyman" appears and gives her the "vapors" enough to launch into her screed.
However, I was amused by her ability to invent enough BS to "cut through" so she could get to her point.
Uh, what was her point?
Anyway, big finish:
So here it is: I have an "anti-war agenda". War sucks. Its bad. People get hurt in war. People die in war. War is wreckage and suffering. I don't like it. I'm not in favor of it. I want to do anything and everything it takes to end war immediately, if not sooner.
Color me bad, kids.
Lawdy, lawdy ... the kids are colorin' dear. And the "bad" they're coloring has nothing to do with being "anti-war".
What's interesting is she seems to think that she's discovered some radical truth to which only those of her ilk are privy.
Indeed war sucks. And yes, people die in war. No one with an ounce of sanity is in "favor" of war. No one. And all of us, regardless of what side we come down on, want to do everything we can to end war (and its destruction and killing) as quickly as possible.
But it is here the difference between Carla and I come to the fore. She has no conditions for ending a war (and yes I am indeed inferring that from her commentary). She just wants it ended. In fact, despite her disclaimer to the contrary, she'd probably never support it starting regardless of the reasons. Although she claims that she understands that in some instances war is necessary, I'd suggest that if true, she hasn't seen one yet.
I, otoh, understand that success in Iraq (and for that matter, in any war undertaken) is much more desirable than failure for any number of reasons, one of which has to do with future wars. That means I think making a concerted effort toward achieving success even if it costs us "more war" in the relative short term is the right choice now, because I realize that if we succeed in Iraq, it will probably prevent much "more war" in the future.
To Carla, obviously, that's an entirely unreasonable justification. Nope, this winger is simply a goosestepping moron who engages in "Gobbleseque" propaganda when he dares to point out that an anti-war group is, gasp, anti-war.
Ah well, pumping out that load gave her something to do today. And me too (and yes, sometimes it's just fun to take something this bad completely apart and try to figure out why it was assembled in the first place).
Anyway, big finish: So here it is: I have an "anti-war agenda". War sucks. Its bad. People get hurt in war. People die in war. War is wreckage and suffering. I don’t like it. I’m not in favor of it. I want to do anything and everything it takes to end war immediately, if not sooner.
The quickest way to end a war is by losing it, my dear.
Or in this case, the quickest way to preventing future wars against radical Islamics is to surrender to Sharia law. So if you’re willing to do anything and everything to "end war" immediately, I assume you’ll be the 1st to set the example and get fitted for your burqua?
What’s that you say? Oh, I see. You want to end all war but not have the consequences impact you a bit. You need to learn a few things. You need to learn that "peace" doesn’t necessarily equal the absence of war. You need to learn that sometimes avoiding a fight has worse consequences than picking a fight. And you need to learn that when you make blanket statements like "I’ll do everything and anything to end war immediately", you may be signing on for a wide range of things you may not support. The Hiroshima/Nagasaki bombs ended the war immediately, for example. I imagine a few well placed nukes could also end the WoT for quite some time, as well as prevent future confrontations with Iran.
You signed up for that?
Who’s "sacred cow" just got slaughtered? DAMN, that steak tastes good.
Carla appears to be rather long on snark, short in the tooth, and damn near absent in the reading comprehension department. In fact, she doesn’t seem to grasp the concept of her own writing. Just for example, she chides McQ (whom she refers to as "Paul L" for some reason) for his reading comprehension skills:
Reading is fundamental, Paul. I made no attempts whatsoever to say that MoveOn isn’t an anti-war group. In fact, its my understanding that this is exactly what they are. While I’m sure you found the entire thing amusing—its not nearly as amusing as the fact that you either didn’t read my post, or aren’t capable of basic reading comprehension.
Since you clearly didn’t get the point—let me dial you in: I’M ANTI WAR TOO...and I’d prefer to be that way. I’m consistently appalled at those who aren’t. This is really not that tough of a concept.
OK, so we all agree that MoveOn is in fact an "anti-war" group. So, as Paul/McQ pointed out in his post here at "Quando", how is that "labelling" someone? Carla goes on to get all huffy about it:
So not only does Paul not believe that readers make inferences from the labels that authors use to set the tone for their pieces, Paul believes we’re all just too stupid to actually make the PROPER inferences, as well. He just couldn’t possibly mean that "anti-war" is bad by slapping that label on MoveOn, even though its quite clearly what he meant.
He was just trotting out that label in an innocent attempt to delineate that liberals (unlike the good and righteous Paul), just don’t want "success in Iraq"
I guess internal consistency just isn’t that important wherever Carla is from.
Oh well, McQ (I mean, "Paul"), at least you did your good deed for the day in sending her some traffic.
McQ - you should be ashamed of yourself, as Tom Lehrer observed in "Folk Song Army", it takes a lot of gumption to take a stand against things like war and poverty and injustice. This woman should be recognized and applauded for being brave enough to speak out against these things the rest of us are obviously in favor of.
"So join the folk song army, guitars are the weapons we bring, to the fight against poverty, war and injustice, ready....aim.....sing!"
I have to admit I haven’t laughed this hard in a while.
Where in the h*ll did "Paul" come from? There isn’t anyone here who blogs under than name (or one even close to it) and for the life of me I can’t even remember a commenter by that name.
Paul!? And with a last initial as well. Whooo ... I want what she’s smokin’.
Oh and MichaleW ... you’ve pointed out quite adequately why her rebuttal isn’t worth the time (not that her original post was either, but it sure has been responsible for some hilarity on a fairly slow day).