"The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing."


Glenn Reynolds:

Barack Obama:
"Impossible to transcend."

Albert A. Gore, Jr.:
"An incontinent brute."

Rev. Jeremiah Wright:
"God damn the Gentleman Farmer."

Friends of GF's Sons:
"Is that really your dad?"

Kickball Girl:
"Keeping 'em alive until 7:45."

Hired Hand:
"I think . . . we forgot the pheasant."

I'm an
Alcoholic Yeti
in the
TTLB Ecosystem

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Why Can't We All Just Quietly Kill Ourselves?

By way of selling his latest book, America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It, Mark Steyn suggested to his publisher that he appear not only in predictably sympathetic forums, but also in those guaranteed to be hard-core anti-American, like NPR and PBS. His publicist supposedly demurred and, when Steyn objected that he was tough enough to take the heat, was corrected:
"I didn’t mean that,” she said. “I meant going on those shows doesn’t sell a lot of books.” As she sees it, your nutso right-wing author does ten minutes on WZZZ Hate-Talk AM at three in the morning and the local Borders sells out the next day. Whereas he’s interviewed for an hour by Terry Gross on NPR, and it sends precisely two listeners out to their bookstore, and only to buy that Andrew Sullivan doorstopper on everything that’s gone wrong with conservatism.
Nonetheless, Steyn persisted and bearded the lion in his den. He doesn't mind the conspiracy fellows, who've proved in their own back yard, to their own satisfaction, that the World Trade Center was brought down by Mossad, using sophisticated vinegar/baking soda bombs. Nor do the blood-for-oil ladies trouble him. He is, instead, "befuddled" by the "pacifists":
. . . the callers who aren’t foaming and partisan but speak in almost eerily calm voices, like patient kindergarten teachers, and say things like “I find it very offensive that your guest can use language that’s so hierarchical” - i.e., repressive Muslim dictatorships are worse than pluralist western democracies - and “We are confronting violence with violence, when what we need is non-violent conflict resolution that’s binding on all sides” – i.e. …well, i.e. whatever.

Half the time these assertions are such enervated soft-focus blurs of passivity, there’s nothing solid enough to latch on to and respond to. But, when, as they often do, they cite Martin Luther King or Mahatma Gandhi, I point out that we’re not always as fortunate to find ourselves up against such relatively benign enemies as British imperial administrators or even American racist rednecks. King and Gandhi’s strategies would not have been effective against fellows who gun down classrooms of Russian schoolchildren, or self-detonate at Muslim weddings in Amman, or behead you live on camera and then release it as a snuff video, or assassinate politicians and as they’re dying fall to the ground and drink their blood off the marble. Come to that, King and Gandhi’s strategies would not have been effective against the prominent British Muslim who in a recent debate at Trinity College, Dublin announced that the Prophet Mohammed’s message to infidels was “I am here to slaughter you all.” Good luck with the binding non-violent conflict resolution there.


On the whole I prefer those Americans who tune out the foreign-policy bores for wall-to-wall Anna Nicole Smith coverage: at least they’ve got an interest – ask them about the latest scoop on the identity of the father of her child and they’ll bring you up to speed. By contrast, a large number of elite Americans are just as parochial and indifferent to the currents of the age; the only difference is that they choose to trumpet it as a moral virtue. And you can’t avoid the suspicion that, far from having “a lot of work to do”, a lot of us are heavily invested in a belief in “pacifism” because it involves doing no work at all – apart from bending down once every couple of years and slapping the “CO-EXIST” bumper sticker on your new car.
Read the whole thing. H/T to relapsed catholic.

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