Thursday, February 24, 2005
Appropriately on the case, the ever invaluable World 'o Crap in a long post every word of which is a must-read.
I suppose one should read the original, but to be frank, I didn't. I had my fill of said Maguire while working on an analysis of the rhetorical tropes used by the right in lieu of sustained, reasoned argument, in support of the attack on John Kerry by those Swiftboat Vets who hate John Kerry. You can make up your own mind what to do in this regard; s.z. provides all necessary links, but you'll get a fair idea of what Maguire had to say from her text as well. I offer no quotes because I'm serious about that "must-read" rating.
Please, read the comments thread, too; in this case it becomes an extension of the original post. Mr. Maguire shows up, less to argue, more to exhibit attitude and the rhetorical gymnastics that the right is actually proud of, amazingly. Actually, it's not that amazing, since, for the most part, their analysis is always in attack mode, and despite their frequent allusions to the paranoid style of the left, ( more or less a given that does not require proof), their own world view is essentially that of a besieged minority, everywhere surrounded by a liberal elite, which is, by definition, incapable of any semblance of truth.
"s.z." returns in the thread to answer with both style and truth, as do a notable contingent of intelligent and stylish readers. Here, I will give a few examples, the better to entice you;
Just so we're all clear on this: Outing a fake White House reporter as a gay prostitute: Gross Miscarriage of Justice. Outing a covert CIA operative for petty political revenge: Bitch Had it Coming.That "pissing match" reference by Julia, yes she of the Sisyphean shrug, will make more sense when you've read the thread.
Okay, Tom, in case you're still hanging around, you interrupted my tangential wisecrack about your "linky richness" and the distinction between larding a tenderloin and cutting a slit in a pork chop and inflating it with Crisco. Four links to Froomkin, three to yourself, two to show that yet another hastily-called presidential press conference was hastily called, even one to demonstrate that JimJoeJeff was operating on a day pass? I mean, I happen to love footnotes, but I need at least five hours sleep a night.
Really, now, in all honesty: if this were a Democratic administration would you mutatis mutandis care a rat's ass about the Brady room? About what was on the front page of the Times? Would it still be a matter of invading someone's private sexuality or a question of gay prostitutes with mysterious access to a post-9/11 White House?Where are your manners, young lady? Tom is offering to have an online pissing match with you about this and pump up his traffic numbers and you can't even set a simple trackback ping for him. Tsk, SZ. Tsk.
Only two trolls show up to post a single time each, not counting Maguire himself, both displaying the same attitude as he does - that mix of sarcasm, derision, tendentious misdirection, and a smugness, as to their own rightness, stylishness, and humor, so thorough one begins to suspect that deep down they don't believe it either. Here's a sample from Jeff G. of Protein Wisdom.
I am a TWIT! A TWIT! Because of the HYPOCRISY! Now quick. SAVE THE REPUBLIC BY POSTING MORE PICS OF JEFF GANNON COCK! THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE!As I say, a certified laff riot.
On his own blog, Mr. Goldstein pays passing attention to this little dustup of z.s. taking on Maguire, under the title:
BREAKING: GANNON IMPLICATED IN KENNEDY ASSASSINATION COVER-UP; BRIT HUME "VERY LIKELY 'THE BEAST'," CRITICS SAYClever, no? Actually no, because this exercise in satiric exaggeration is so bereft of any connection to what "critics" say, or what any humans left or right are saying, that it can only work as a rhetorical shout-out to other members of the already converted congregation. Even so, you should read both the post and the comments.
Why, you ask? Because the habits of mind and argument employed with such regularity by the inhabitants of Wingnuttia are seeping into the mainstream, through talk radio, Fox News, and right wing bloggers, who are as uncritically appraised by the SCLM as is the Bush administration itself. We need to understand how their rhetoric is put together, what are its inner workings and favorite tropes, if we are to successfully counter it.
Yes, we must not become obsessed with it; in part, the constant attacks, the tendentious assertion of facts that aren't facts, is part of an attempt to get us to do just that. To wit:
On the other hand, simply ignoring this unfortunate reality is neither an option nor a strategy.
Sometimes I let my four-year-old play in the kitchen unsupervised for a while. He makes a mess but its child-proofed in there and I can go about the business of running a household while hes making a lot of noise with the pots and pans.
Same with the Dems. Let them make sound and fury. We know where they are and we can go about some serious business. Let them distract the moonbats. Better that they should be mindlessly occupied until such a time as they get their first paycheck and become Libertarians.
We, on the other hand, should be focusing on the top ten spiked stories of 2004. Thats where the real trouble lies.
But, Ana, I looked at the top ten spiked stories, and none of them seems to involve GAY PROSTITUTE HOMOSEXUAL MAN-COCK. Nor do any of those stories deal with the threat that QUEER, QUEER, GAY, MAN-ON-MAN PROSTITUTE MAN-COCK having access to a press conference poses to the safety of the Republic. Besides, none of them seems to even touch on THE HYPOCRICY.