Showing posts with label rod dreher. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rod dreher. Show all posts

Monday, August 31, 2015


You and I are well acquainted with the awfulness of Rod Dreher, and it's gotten to the point where I don't check his site much anymore, because it's too often the same old lather-rinse-repeat of gay oppression and the Benedict Option and I can't even. But I wandered over there today and came across a paragraph in a post called "Trump, the American Pim Fortuyn" (yes, Dreher managed to top the other ridiculous Trump comparisons) that epitomizes not just what's awful about Dreher, but also what's awful about a certain cast of mind all too common in this great democracy:
When I think of Trump’s appeal, I think about the conversations we used to have at the editorial board of the Dallas Morning News years ago. All of us involved in the discussion had good private health insurance, so none of us had to use the city’s public hospitals, which were jammed by immigrants, many of them in the country illegally, demanding health care. If we were poor or working-class citizens — white, black, or brown — who depended on the public hospitals (or for that matter, the public schools in small towns or non-white suburbs), the immigration problem would probably have looked a lot different. But we weren’t, so immigration more often than not appeared as a matter of socially tolerant liberalism and pro-business conservatism. People of all races who weren’t well-off enough to have good private health care, to put their kids in private schools, or to move to suburbs with good public schools — who spoke for them? Who speaks for them?
Dreher is a Christian of the most strenuously self-promoting kind. Christ's least-of-my-brothers stuff is, of course, also the least-assimilated part of the Gospels for people like him.

But for most of them it's enough just to be a flat-out hypocrite and act as if those poor people who aren't dropping the little extra they've got in their favorite megapastor's collection plate don't exist: No, Dreher acknowledges them, but cunningly finds a way to turn these out-group paupers, these desperate Mexicans who risk death in coming to America, risk uprooting and disaster once they've arrived, and are regularly and viciously exploited while they're here, into the real oppressors.

They can't legally get health insurance, see, so they clog up the emergency rooms that can't turn them away when they're sick -- which Dreher characterizes as  "demanding health care," as if treatment for illnesses were the equivalent of an iPhone or a pair of fancy sneakers. And in seeking medical attention, these immigrants deny native-born Americans the emergency room elbow-room they deserve. No, it has nothing to do with the shitty bottom-layer funding and attention we give to all our public services, including emergency care, in this country -- it's those even poorer poor people who are to blame.

And, naturally, liberals who give a shit about these bums are just pretending to do so because they secretly despise the non-Mexican, legally-working-for-the-most-part, and (most importantly) reliably-Republican class -- especially if those liberals have "good private health insurance." Because if you think everyone should have the privileges you have, then you should feel guilty about having them yourself; but if you don't think everyone should have them, then your possession of them, even in the midst of thousands suffering for lack of them, is just the earned blessing of the righteous.

Evil's not too strong a word.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015


How goes the rear-guard, dead-ender attack on gay marriage? Hilariously! Have a look at this symposium at Opus Dei strokebook First Things featuring the Douthats of Tomorrow. Say what you will about snake-handlers and desert mystics, there's no crazier Christian than than Christian intellectual; they dress  like Chesterton and talk like the Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne. All the symposiasts  want to see overturned (or, in Scaliaese, o'erturned) not only Obergefell but also America's sexual freedoms in general. Some have interesting ideas as to how to achieve this. Hadley Arkes, who like many of his compatriots compares Obergefell to the Dred Scott decision (because having to live in a world with married gays is the same as slavery), suggests this: must start with the voice that rings out the depth of the wrong and summons the resistance—that “this shall not stand.” We will learn here right away, from the reactions springing from our political class, just who among our political figures may be up the task and adequate to the moment. But it may not be a man in office, or someone running for anything. Rick Santelli, emitting a cri de coeur on CNBC, triggered the coming of the Tea Party movement. A Robert George, with the attention properly focused, might accomplish the same thing.
A Tea Party, only anti-gay! Presumably instead of tricorners and knee-breeches, they'll all dress in Eldridge Cleaver codpiece pants and other affectations of extreme butchness. And with Robert George as their inspirator! This would be the same Robert George who's been wowing the West for years with his rap about how "masturbatory, sodomitical, and other sexual acts which are not reproductive in type, cannot unite persons organically" and other such keep-it-in-your-pants perorations. Put him out on the town square with a bullhorn and watch the next Great Aweakening unfold. (Arkes also calls for a Constitutional Convention, which should go about as well as that schtick always does.)

Some are enraged by the brands who waved their rainbow flags for the decision, and want a holy boycott. Mark Bauerlein:
It’s time for conservatives to apply principles to their purses. Coca-Cola, ESPN, and Walmart are prominent cases of corporate culture warfare, and every time a conservative buys a Coke, watches SportsCenter, or enters the megastore, he helps them do their damage.
I can see the faces of Bauerlein's readers falling, then their wheels turning: Maybe they can drink Coke on the down-low.
No conservative likes to turn his consumption into a political act...
Ha ha -- no conservative, he says! Someone buy that cowboy some Chik-fil-A! Peter J. Leithart wants the brethren to cease with the happy-clappy love-one-another bogus Christianity and cut to the chaste:
And we might as well say it plainly: We oppose gay marriage because we believe homosexual acts are sinful, and we believe that for biblical and theological reasons. Unbelievers already know it. Let’s admit it.
Noted! Rabbi David Novak suggests they "stop co-officiating (i.e., along with the marriage license clerk) at civil weddings, and thus remove their names from the civil marriage registry" -- which is actually sensible, and so will probably not catch on, as his comrades seem to think that when a single God-botherer doesn't like a party it's the party that should leave, not him.

Some of them reach back to root causes, none further than Ephraim Radner, who has half decided that democracy itself is inconsistent with his religion:
Second, the vitality and moral usefulness of the liberal state is increasingly in question: has this form of rule by procedural decision-making served its purpose and collapsed under the weight of its own outsized reach? We are perhaps about to enter times of political revolution and re-inventing government analogous to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
Maybe he can mob up with ISIS; really, what's for them to wrangle over except the name of God? Melinda Selmys, meanwhile, blames it all on the disastrous abandonment of arranged marriages. Once upon a time, there was forced marriage for the godly stuff, and "concubinage" for funsies:
The difficulty that presents traditional marriage in the modern world is that over several centuries we’ve undergone a major social shift. The keeping of mistresses or concubines stopped being socially acceptable at about the same time that the idea of “marrying for love” first started to gain traction in the public imagination. The institution of marriage began to change: the focus slowly shifted from the creation of family alliances and provision for the continuation of the line, to the happiness of the couple and the love that they have for one another. In the process, a lot of other concepts (consent, for example) also shifted. The relationship in which people joined their lives on a permanent basis in order to have children became, at the same time, the relationship in which people enjoyed intense erotic attraction and emotionally satisfying interactions.
Now, in a lot of ways this was a good development...
Marrying for love isn't all bad! See, she's meeting you halfway. But:
...Simply put, mutual responsibility towards offspring naturally demands a long-term commitment (at least eighteen years) while mutual attraction and erotic desire does not... The battle over the institution of marriage is basically a battle over which of these two purposes of marriage ought to have primacy.
So if you're not as sexually voracious as you were when you were 20, Selmys doesn't see why you stay in your otherwise meaningless modern marriage. Well, she might win a convert or two among unhappily-marrieds looking for a loophole.

But above all, whining -- always whining. "We have entered Canaan and been swallowed up before Moloch in the same way that Israel was enveloped by a surrounding religion of idolatrous violence," cries Radner. "On the bright side, we’ve entered an era that will make for some of the bravest Christians we’ve ever seen," consoles Mark Regnerus; we will see them huddled in the food courts, enduring the sight of men holding hands. Patrick Deneen compares himself and his buds to Solzhenitsyn, and wails:
What has been most striking all along is not the division, the passion, at times the vitriol. What has been most remarkable is the insistence by same-sex marriage proponents that all dissent be silenced—whether through threats of economic destruction, legal bludgeoning, and now, increasingly by appeal to the raw power of the State.
Did they have a straight Holocaust and I missed it?
The firing of Brendan Eich was a bellwether for what has now become a commonplace: the fanatical insistence that all opposition be squelched, and more—that even belief in an alternative view of marriage be eradicated.
Ah, Brendan Eich -- the rich CEO dismissed by his rich Board of Directors, and therefore a martyr (in fact Rod Dreher -- yeah, they couldn't have this party without him -- declares "We are all Brendan Eich now." I wish! I could probably live on his pool fees).  You know, if one of these Jesus freaks got as upset when, say, a minimum-wage worker got fired for talking to the Washington Post about her shitty job, maybe people would take them a little more seriously.

I'm tempted to say it wouldn't be half bad if an actual Gay Gulag appeared for them to be sent off to, but you can't even joke like that around these guys -- in an hour it'll be added to their list of oppressions. I'll say this for them -- their persecution mania is so intense it almost overpowers the smell of their gay-hate. Say, maybe that's the idea!

UPDATE. Had to gender-correct a pronoun for Hadley Arkes because the gay oppressors forced her to have a sex change. (No, actually he was always a man from what I know.) Also comments are so fun you should just dive in. For example, John Wesley Hardin reveals the revolutionary agenda: "'Taste the Rainbow' is now a diktat from our fabulous cultural commissars!" And there's this cautionary tale from Jay B.: "First they came for flowers and I said 'Since when did fags like flowers?' Then they came for the cake and I said 'Pastries are sacred.' Then there was no one to have cake and flowers with me." I think he speaks for us all.

Friday, June 26, 2015


This old tune jumped into my head today for some reason. 

•   So far, the most delicious reaction is from the American Life League:
Today’s Supreme Court decision strikes at the heart of our nation just as Roe v. Wade did decades ago. Now, by judicial fiat, we are called to honor the fictional union of two people of the same sex. A nation that has lost its values has lost its soul. Our nation has become like a dead body floating downstream, to what destination only the devil knows.
But I'm sure someone will top it by this afternoon.

•   National Review is awash in anti-gay-marriage tears now. Michael Potemra asks whether we could have avoided all this gayness if only the Senate had approved Robert Bork in 1987:
...I’m not saying merely that if Bork hadn’t been rejected, President Reagan wouldn’t have appointed Justice Anthony Kennedy, who wrote today’s opinion: I think that if Bork had been on the Court, that platform would have given him an outsized opportunity to influence America’s cultural and constitutional discussion – and that America would have been significantly less likely to embrace the sort of the change the Court affirmed today.
Except that Bork was a fucking nut, a gay-hating would-be censor, out of step with ordinary Americans even in that more conservative time -- hell, even Ole Perfesser Instapundit couldn't get with his narrow view of liberty. Also, he looked like an Old Testament prophet cross-bred with Bozo the Clown. Someone, perhaps a kindly intern, may have pointed this out to Potemra, for he continues:
What if, instead of my hypothesis, the American people came to dislike Justice (or eventual Chief Justice!) Bork intensely, and as a result moved even faster in the direction of anti-originalist “living-Constitution” views? But I submit that, in my experience, even legal scholars who are in strong opposition to Bork’s views recognize that he would have been one of the most ferociously intelligent and effective justices ever to serve on the Court. He would, in my opinion, have been a game-changer.
As as our legal scholars go, so goes the nation! Well, these are the same guys who thought we'd all fall in love with Sarah Palin.

•  On gay matters Rod Dreher simply cannot disappoint: He tells his fellow Christians that "persecution is coming" and they should "prepare for resistance." Wonder if that means he's going to postpone his European  trip:
James C., Sordello, and I are going to celebrate the Fourth of July in Lyon at the Café des Fédérations. We will have dinner the night before with Prof. J-F Mayer at Le Boeuf d’Argent, and Sunday lunch at Café Comptoir Abel. My liver will spend the rest of the summer recovering. 
Any other foodie stops in Lyon to consider? I’m thinking probably Les Halles de Lyon Paul Bocuse. Help me out here.
I'm guessing not. Resistance prep is for the rubes. But when he gets back, he expects to see those filtration systems assembled!

•  Oh, Rod:

Obergefell is a sign of the times, for those with eyes to see. This isn’t the view of wild-eyed prophets wearing animal skins and shouting in the desert. It is the view of four Supreme Court justices, in effect declaring from the bench the decline and fall of the traditional American social, political, and legal order.
It's interesting that he feels the need to draw this distinction. I guess in the new, air-conditioned and artisanally-fed Benedict Option, old-fashioned Simon of the Desert-type prophets are déclassé. See you jokers at the next Livin'-as-Exiles Brunch!

•   National Review's Charles C.W. Cooke predicts that "the long-term path the Republican party will take after today’s Supreme Court decision" will be mellow and accommodating --
Those hoping to determine which long-term path the Republican party will take after today’s Supreme Court decision need to look no further than to the RNC itself. In a message released immediately after the ruling, Reince Priebus mildly criticized the ruling (correctly, in my view) while acknowledging its “finality;” struck a magnanimous note, confirming that the GOP “[respects] those on the winning side of the case” and remains “committed to finding common ground”; and identified the key priority going forward, which is to ensure the protection of conscience rights and the maintenance of religious liberty.
Meanwhile Cooke's colleague David French froths:
This is the era of sexual liberty — the marriage of hedonism to meaning — and the establishment of a new civic religion. The black-robed priesthood has spoken. Will the church bow before their new masters?
Common ground, indeed.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


'Round rightwing world, there has of late been much lamentation and weeping over the ruin Obama is alleged to have made of America. This is of course just their way of trying to distract the rabble so they might forget who George W. Bush was and let the Republicans get back into power, whereupon they will begin a war with Iran, force paupers to subsist on protein powder (but not the good kind the yuppies get!), institute the Yacht Needs Cleaning Income Tax Credit, and generally complete the neo-feudalization process. But right now they're really gnashing their little teeth out and it's fun to watch.

Take the ultimate wingnut Memorial Day essay by Town Hall's Slaverin' Kurt Schlichter:
Like everything about the Community Organizer-In-Chief and his cronies, everything about the carefully choreographed charade we’ll see this Memorial Day is a lie... 
It’s a pose, an act, a scam. You can see it in the faces of the liberal politicians as they are forced to stand there onstage each last Monday of May, pretending they wouldn’t rather be anywhere else in the world than in the sun listening to people talk about what, at best, liberals consider suckers, and more often consider outright babykillers.
(His readers nod sagely from their Barcaloungers and wash down another burger with another craft beer.)
Look at Obama’s face as he walks behind the floral tribute in front of the cameras at the Tomb of the Unknowns. Tell me he’s thinking about the men who stormed ashore at Normandy and not about getting out of there and teeing up.
He’ll talk a good game – they all will, but it’s all a lie. If he cared, he wouldn’t have squandered the victory in Iraq to satisfy his America-hating pals on the left. ISIS, the JV team? Obama lied, and tens of thousands died – and those were the lucky ones.
The whole froth is a delight -- some sections, e.g. "They spit in our warriors’ collective face every time Jenjis Kerrey’s equine mug flashes across the TV screen as he rushes back to the Middle East to tongue kiss the Iranian Islamonazis..." you can easily imagine being read by Patrick Magee in A Clockwork Orange. But "and those were the lucky ones" is sublime -- her heroes spent, America  cowers before the coming reign of Hitlery ISIS!

At National Review Victor Davis Maximus Super Hanson brings the back of his wrist to his forehead, flutters his eyelids, and mourns the wreck Obama has made of the Middle East to which C-Plus Augustus once brought order and stability. Also unlike Bush, Obama won't suck up to the Saudi pashas  -- and have a care, soothsays Hanson, for "their financial clout and the availability of Pakistani bombs for Sunni petrodollars" (also, they share our values!) -- plus Obama hates Israel, perhaps because "it resembles the United States too closely, and thus earns the reflected hypercriticism that so many leftists cultivate for their own civilization," but he loves his fellow black people, whom he and "the elites" subsidize with "huge, unquestioned redistributionist entitlements for the inner city." You see the problem: Obama gives more attention to America's despised underclass than to Arab sheiks and Israel. Vanitas! 

Hanson's colleague Quin Hillyer actually revives the #Benghazi-is-worse-than-Watergate thing ("a few goobers rifling through the office of the opposing political party" etc) and denounces the Clintons in general for "putting all the rest of us at substantially greater risk of annihilation" (hysteritalics his). But it's the American people who seem most to disappoint him. "A goodly number of Americans apparently are aware of the scandal yet still fall at [Hillary Clinton's] feet," he gasps. The punters also "believe quarterback Tom Brady cheated but say in the next breath that he’s a good role model for children." Of course, dummy, you want to say to him, how long have you lived in this country, Brady's rich and butch! But by then Hillyer is on about our "culture" and how it "celebrates depravities" and  "we're now told that we can't spank a misbehaving child; that we can't read Huckleberry Finn because it features the 'n' word; that we can’t name sports teams in honor of Indians" etc. and eventually Hillyer is holding his knees to his chest, rocking and reminiscing on Pat Moynihan and the Moody Blues.

The best, however, is Rod Dreher having the expected 100,000-word meltdown over gay marriage in Ireland. Here is, in every sense, the nut graf:
Understand that by “liberalism,” [Matthew B. Crawford] means not the social politics of the Democratic Party and its supporters, but the entire Enlightenment framework of social and political ideas. All of us Americans, whether we call ourselves liberals or conservatives, are liberals in this sense. I am no different. I believe in free speech, freedom of religion, civil rights and the other hallmarks of liberalism. Now that liberalism has evolved into hostility to what I believe to be true about religion, morality, and human nature, I — like all orthodox Christians — have to face the fact that liberalism, which all of us Americans took in with our mother’s milk, may ultimately be alien to our faith, because in the end, it enthrones the choosing Self over God or any conception of external, transcendent Truth.
Keep this in mind when they come whining at you about gay wedding cakes -- these guys think that the Enlightenment, whence came the American idea of freedom, is anti-Christian. And you know what the next step would be. I'm beginning to think Dreher's half-hearted praise of the "hallmarks of liberalism" is just so much taqiyya.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015


I had a minute, so I figured I'd go look at Rod Dreher's blog for some crazy. He's nothing if not reliable:
There’s a racist joke that speaks to an ugly truth here: “Q: What do you call a millionaire black brain surgeon? A. [racial slur].” The idea is that for people who hate black folks, nothing that black folks do matters; it’s who they are that the racist cares about.
Got that? OK. Take a breath. Now:
Similarly, for many (though certainly not all) modern people liberal conviction, it doesn’t matter that orthodox Christians serve the poor, or do good in their own communities. What matters is their stance on homosexuality.
Him and the New Black Panthers ought to rap about this. Keep building bridges, Brother Rod!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015


Hey look, Rod Dreher took a moment off from his endless war against the gays to address the Baltimore riots! His first instinct is to tell us the rioters have "lawlessness in their hearts," but list ye, sinners, for "the rest of us are destroying the basis for self-governance and order in our polis too." What can this mean? Later Dreher amplifies: He knows a religious school where they have a sexual assault problem, and the obvious reason is that society at large no longer adheres to "the concepts and the language of the Bible," which Biblelessness has apparently been transmitted atmospherically (you know, like Ebola!) to the religious school or something:
...the school’s leadership refuses to use the language or morality, or moral absolutes. It couches everything it says in the language of liberalism, which is to say, in consent and procedure...
Whereas previously the Holy Ghost wrote the disciplinary policies. This is also, per Dreher, why we don't have another MLK; I thought it was because we tend to shoot them. Inevitably:
This is why what is happening in Baltimore is linked to what is happening on Capitol Hill at the Supreme Court today. America in 2015 is a culture that defines the good as whatever the individual says it is.
Son of a gun, he brought it back home! Eventually, Dreher revisits:
It’s society’s fault. It always is. In this view, poor black people are always acted upon, and are never moral agents.
Also, Freddie Gray "was a layabout who had a bail bondsman the way other people have an auto mechanic," thugs, black fatherlessness, etc. -- why, it's as if Dreher remembered there were other people besides homosexuals for him to hate! He ends thus:
...we will get absolutely nowhere toward harmonizing our badly fractured communities if all we do is blame Somebody Else, or some abstraction — White People, Black People, History, Social Injustice — for our own sins and failings, both individual and collective.
If self-awareness were a virus, scientists could build a vaccine off Dreher's immunity.

UPDATE. Many alicublog commenters note the howling irony of Dreher complaining that a sexual assault policy is based on "consent and procedure." ("The language of 'consent and procedure' officially became the basis of our legal system in 1215," says Gromet. "Leave it to Dreher to find the High Middle Ages too liberal.") The lack of clarity among conservatives on the concept of consent is well documented, but it will always be worse with Brother Rod, an every-head-shall-bow-and-every-knee-shall-bend type who probably left Catholicism because they wouldn't let him into Opus Dei.

Kudos to Megalon: "You better watch it, America! The Rod From God is THIS CLOSE to opening a serious can of smite ass!"

Oh, and Dreher has a new Baltimore post up, basically a new entry in the Longest Way To Say 'They're Animals' Competition. And he cites Kevin D. Williamson as a moral authority! Here's an example of Williamson's writing on the riots:

Translation: All liberals are white (blacks are Mau-Maus or something) and they're all as scared of black people as I am.

Friday, April 24, 2015


Good day for this. Never a bad one, really.

•   At National Review, Mona Charen snarls in "Racial Milestones and a Corrupt Press":
You can do this all day, I know, play “What if a Republican had done...” But the contrast is so galling, it simply must be noted. Today’s Washington Post carries a story about the confirmation of Loretta Lynch as attorney general. The inside headline, on page A7, proclaims “Lynch Will Be First Black Woman to Head the Justice Department.” A glance back at the coverage of Condoleeza Rice’s confirmation as the first black woman Secretary of State? The headline was “Rice Confirmed Amid Criticism.” The story accompanying that headline featured Democrats’ slams against attorney general-nominee Alberto Gonzalez, but not a word about the history-making moment of confirming the first black woman secretary of state.

This tears the veil off the “first blah blahs” the press and Democrats make such a fuss over. It’s completely partisan. It has nothing to do with true pride in the accomplishments of once oppressed peoples. Conservative women’s accomplishments are illegitimate. Black conservatives are invisible...
The Washington Post is only one hydra-head of the Liberal Media, so I went to see what other treasonous news orgs had reported on Rice's milestone. The New York Times:
Condoleezza Rice, a scholar of the cold war who was President Bush's closest foreign policy adviser during his 2000 campaign and throughout his first term, was sworn in as secretary of state Wednesday evening, hours after the Senate confirmed her by a vote of 85 to 13.
Ms. Rice, who is the second woman, and the first black woman, to become secretary of state...
Talk about burying the lede! Worse, CNN didn't get to Rice's race/gender qualifications till the third paragraph. And NPR, well, you can imagine, the first line was probably about how she was a fascist or something --
The Senate votes 85-13 to confirm Condoleezza Rice as secretary of state, making her the first black woman to serve as the nation's top diplomat.
-- okay, well then surely those commies at the Associated Press --
WASHINGTON (AP) — America's first black woman secretary of state took the ceremonial oath of office Friday surrounded by family and friends...
Look, it's no fair, that Democrat bitch got a headline! Elsewhere at National Review, you can read Mona Charen's racial opinions about Obama's Secret Service protection: namely, that Obama has torn the races apart, so now if someone sic-semper-tyrannises him "it’s a good bet that close to 100 percent of blacks and a good percentage of others would believe that a demonic conspiracy brought him down." Yeesh. Maybe cook gave her some runny eggs this morning.

•   Rod Dreher's blog remains a mix of persecution mania and book peddling, but I have to to tell you he surprised me in his latest sermon on how the gays are persecuting Christians:
We must try, anyway, because if we are going to hold on to the orthodox Christian faith in this increasingly anti-Christian culture, we are going to have to learn how to endure, and to endure joyfully.
I ran out of time this morning on the stage, but I wanted to talk briefly about how we will have much to learn from the African-American experience. A black friend’s grandmother, encouraging her children in the 1940s not to let their spirits and their dignity be broken by white hatred, counseled, “Don’t be the kind of person they think you are.” That’s great advice for Christians going forward.
Sure, they experienced slavery, segregation, and lynchings. but Big Gummint made us bake a cake. Now for a rousing rendition of that old cracker spiritual, "Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Gay."

•   Speaking of whiners, here's Mollie Hemingway claiming we're heading toward a joyless Orwellian dystopia of "comedy speakeasies" where "people will have to have the password. But they’ll also have to be patted down for recording equipment," etc., because comedians are ascared someone will hear their jokes outside the club and some tattletale will get them sent to PC Jail. What's her evidence for this? 1.) The New York Post said David Letterman's audience was "'stunned' by his 'sexist' joke"; 2.) "Jamie Foxx was accused of transphobia"; 3.) Trevor Noah lost his Daily Show gig -- no wait, that didn't happen; rather, he "received criticism." And... Michael Richards. No, really. If a white guy can't yell "nigger" over and over onstage without getting a hard time for it 12 fucking goddamn years ago, we're headed for totalitarianism. Maybe if Hemingway keeps this up, the conservative movement will gain strength from all the shitty comics who finally have an excuse for nobody liking them.

Thursday, April 23, 2015


The latest martyr to the cause of No Homos is Ryan T. Anderson. Unlike Brendan Eich and the Duck Dynasty guys, though, Anderson has no inherent celebrity or entertainment value: I guess they've gotten to the point where they no longer even need avatars people might know, and are just breeding victims in their own propaganda labs.

Previously known mainly to people who cover anti-gay gasbags for a living ("Says Glee corrupts youth: 'We should be as concerned about what the FOX TV show Glee has done to corrupt a young generation as we are about anything the Court has done'"), Anderson recently received flattering coverage in the Washington Post (strange are the ways of the liberal media! I thought they were all in the tank for Gay ObamaHitler) as "a fresh voice on same-sex marriage," "fresh-faced" and "millennial," who tours the country lecturing on "anthropological truths that men and women are distinct and complementary," illustrating his points with polygamy scare-stories from The New York Post.

This was especially hilarious to me because I last paid attention to Anderson in 2007 when, as an assistant editor at First Things, he was already on the moral-panic beat, complaining that Princeton freshmen had to watch a sexual assault prevention program that had gross stuff in it like "sexual skits, innuendo, 'coming-out' scenes, gay kisses, and other nonsense that some students don’t want to be forced to sit through." If only they'd make sexual assault prevention programs that even rightwing plants can enjoy!

Along with the sex angle, Anderson was (even then!) working the victim-status angle. From my post:
Anderson spends the rest of the article complaining that liberals make jokes about him and his buddies. Normal people learn to shrug this kind of thing off, but for wingers snide comments are hate-speech or bad-touch or something. "Professor [Lee] Silver’s attack wasn’t really aimed at Professor [Robert George]; it was aimed at the students," Anderson claims, because a laff on a prominent conservative buffoon sends students "a message about which points of view are acceptable and which are unacceptable. 
Well, little Ryan has grown up, and advanced from vicarious sufferer over the martyrs of his movement to abused saint himself.  After the Post story came out, his old high school first publicly acknowledged this accomplishment, then ham-handedly rebuffed him. To you and me, this would be tsk-worthy, but to Anderson's brethren it is the iron boot of repression.

"The shunning of Ryan T. Anderson: When support for gay marriage gets ugly," thunders Damon Linker at The Week. Rod Dreher needs two posts to wring his hands over it: "Intellectually bankrupt, morally corrupt," sputters Dreher. "Illiberal elitist liberalism at its ugliest. These people have the power, and will have the power." (He's talking about high school administrators, remember.) At The Federalist, credentialed wingnut Joseph Bottum plays the old trick of telling us he's cool with gay marriage, more or less, but since the Facebook posts of Anderson's high school he's outraged by Chappaquiddick: "Our lives and our discourse are narrowed to only a trickle of intellectual light if we encounter someone like the intelligent and serious Ryan T. Anderson—and simply close our eyes in holy dread." Etc.

I'm not sure what the long term strategy is here: Maybe they just want to get this idea spread around enough that young conservatives for whom there is no room on the wingnut-welfare gravy train can go out on the street with a tin cup and a cardboard sign that says PLEASE HELP, I AM A NO HOMOS MARTYR and wait for donations. Or maybe they think people will go back to persecuting homosexuals because they feel sorry for conservatives.

Thursday, April 09, 2015


4/6/15, 10:42 am: The gays are oppressing us Christians.
4/6/15, 2:02 pm: Buy my book.
4/6/15, 5:35 pm: The gays are oppressing us Christians
4/7/15, 12:05 am: Facebook and the gay drag queens are oppressing us Christians.
4/7/15, 5:08 am: Buy my book.
4/7/15, 12:45 pm: The gays are oppressing us Christians (and after Ross Douthat was theoretically so nice to them!).
4/7/15, 10:57 pm: I know many of you must be sick and tired by now of my posting so heavily on the gay rights vs. religious liberty question, but the gays are oppressing us Christians.
4/7/15, 11:51 pm: The sex liberals are oppressing us Christians and Muslims.
4/8/15, 8:50 am: The sex liberals are close-minded about abortionmurder, and are oppressing us Christians.
4/8/15, 11:14 pm: Buy tickets to my festival.
4/8/15, 11:45 pm: Buy my book.
4/9/15, 4:26 am: The gays are oppressing us Christians, and Jews too I bet.
4/9/15, 8:52 am: The sex liberals and the gays are oppressing us Christians but we will go Benedict and outbreed them and then they'll be sorry.
4/9/15, 10:38 am: Buy my book.

UPDATE. Thanks, commenters, for letting me know I had the wrong dates at first -- this is not speculative fiction, but American History X-for-Jesus! Also thanks, commenters, for comments -- for rahab's "TL;DReher," for Jay B's "Imagine something being shoved down one's throat repeatedly, forever..." for Ted the slacker's "50 Rods of Gay," and so much more.

Thursday, April 02, 2015


I'd like to forget about Indiana, but it keeps exponentiating stupidity like some kind of Moron Collider. Some jerks menaced an anti-gay-marriage pizzeria, and the brethren declared this the fault of the reporter who revealed they were anti-gay-marriage. PJ Media's Scott Ott claimed the reporter "fabricated" the story "out of nothing" (that is, she accurately reported what the pizza people said); then people started menacing the reporter.

By the way, does anyone here approve of pizza shops getting death threats? I didn't think so. I suppose if you really did, you'd have adopted the successful gamergate model  and I'd be hearing how the threats were just satire. But the big story in rightwing circles is that you, me and Ted Kennedy have the pizzeria pinned down with Kalashnikovs.

"The left doesn’t care who gets hurt, so long as they get what they want," raved Ott. "Leftists use Gay people as blunt instruments to hammer only Christens," agreed Samuel Gonzalez at Right Wing News. "They don’t have the guts to go after Muslims who literally throw Homosexuals off roofs in the Middle East." (I don't normally bother to say this, but all rightblogger spellings/capitalizations are verbatim.) And of course the Daily Caller's resident drama queen Jim Treacher cranks it to eleven:
The social-justice bullies of the modern left got what they wanted. Gay marriage is legal in Indiana. But that’s not enough. Nothing will ever be enough, because they need to think of themselves as victims.
That last line must be some sort of inside joke.
...Exit question for gay-marriage enthusiasts: If you’re so sure you’re right, if your stance is so strong, why do you feel the need to destroy anybody who so much as dissents from it?
Why do I what? I don't remember calling in a death threat to the pizza parlor -- but Treacher's not talking to me or you, he's declaiming to the galleries as he plays the lead in The Tragedy of the Victims of Big Gay, and hams it way up. That's what all these guys are doing. If they can get enough people to buy their martyr act, they seem to hope, they might get them to think American Christians are actually being ground under the heel of homosexuals. It's win-whine!

UPDATE. Matt Welch of Reason:
The bad news, for those of us on the suddenly victorious side of the gay marriage debate, is that too many people are acting like sore winners, not merely content with the revolutionary step of removing state discrimination against same-sex couples in the legal recognition of marriage, but seeking to use state power to punish anyone who refuses to lend their business services to wedding ceremonies they find objectionable. That's not persuasion, that's force, and force tends to be the anti-persuasion among those who are on the receiving end of it.
Like Title II of the Civil Rights Act. Well, I expect they'll get rid of that soon enough. (Welch quotes Rod Dreher in support of his argument, which is just perfect.)

Monday, March 30, 2015


Shorter Mollie Hemingway:  RFRAs are for letting Indians get their eagle feathers back and cute little kids wear their hair long, and not for the don't-wanna-serve-gays stuff for which this one's obviously tailored (and which I usually endorse but am keeping mum about until this whole thing blows over).

UPDATE. Hey, America's libertarian flagship says the law's not so bad, liberals are just trying to "signal" to their liberal buddies by opposing it -- you know, like with the hanky code. Who would have guessed they'd take that approach?

UPDATE 2. Speaking of signaling, here's neo-neocon:
I’ll also add that I wonder if the forces driving the anti-Indiana campaign would be interested in making an exemption for devout Muslims who run businesses and don’t want to be forced to be part of gay marriage ceremonies. Somehow I think they might.
'cuz you liberals luvvv gays but you luvvv Muslims more I bet. The brethren seem to think this is some sort of team sport that you win by projecting as hard as you can.

UPDATE 3: Ross Douthat is Just.. Asking... Questions!
4.) In the longer term, is there a place for anyone associated with the traditional Judeo-Christian-Islamic view of sexuality in our society’s elite level institutions? Was Mozilla correct in its handling of the Brendan Eich case? Is California correct to forbid its judges from participating in the Boy Scouts? What are the implications for other institutions? To return to the academic example: Should Princeton find a way to strip Robert George of his tenure over his public stances and activities? Would a public university be justified in denying tenure to a Orthodox Jewish religious studies professor who had stated support for Orthodox Judaism’s views on marriage?...
What if a Muslim didn't like gay people, would you not like the Muslim -- oops, I see neo-neocon had already covered that; okay then,
6) Should churches that decline to bless same-sex unions have their tax-exempt status withdrawn? Note that I’m not asking if it would be politically or constitutionally possible: If it were possible, should it be done?
Also, what if Superman fought Batman on a red-sun planet? Who would win? Who would win in a fight between Bon Jovi and a blade of grass? Just asking questions, here. Finally, what if we could make everyone get gay-married because you love gay people so much? You wouldn't like it? AHA HYPOCRITE! Off to the club to celebrate a great rhetorical victory with the rest of the fuzz-chinned pipe-suckers.

UPDATE 4. Dana Houle points out that some of the wingnuttier wingnuts used to consider Mike Pence a statist trimmer. This suggests that he hopes the new law will shore up his base. It sure has worked on Rod Dreher, who wails that opposition to the law means we're in "post-Christian America" and pledges allegiance to the GOP:
Because religious liberty is the most important political issue to me, it is hard to imagine sitting out the 2016 presidential election, as I have done the past two times because I couldn’t stomach the Republican nominee. It is impossible to imagine voting Democratic in 2016, because the Democrats are actively committed to legislating contempt for traditional Christians like me... 
Voting Republican is no guarantee that religious liberty would be strengthened in SCOTUS rulings in the future, but there is some hope that a GOP president would nominate justices sympathetic to religious liberty concerns. With President Hillary Clinton, or any conceivable Democrat, there is no hope at all.
I always knew he'd come back to the fold.

UPDATE 5. Pence has spoken -- Washington Times:

The situation has been upgraded to Hilarious.

UPDATE 6. Yeah, it appears "You and your fag friends are the Real Oppressors" is today's Shorter Entire Right-Wing Universe. Among others, Ben Domenesch portrays homosexuals as crafty demons who acted all needy and cuddly and then suddenly ass-raped Uncle Sam:
The notable thing about Culture War 4.0 is its consistent rejection of tolerance in favor of government enforced morality. Remember your Muad’Dib: “When I am weaker than you, I ask you for freedom because that is according to your principles; when I am stronger than you, I take away your freedom because that is according to my principles.”...
It was all well and good when tolerance was about conservatives and religious types swallowing their objections and going along with things – but now that the left is being asked to do the same thing? Forget about it.
So, I guess gay people are in charge now! At least our het concentration camps will be tastefully designed.

UPDATE 7. Come on, dude, you're making this too easy:

Actually, I think Down Our Throats would make a good title for the off our backs of the anti-gay movement, when it inevitably emerges.

Friday, March 20, 2015


"I got drugs to take/and a mind to break"
Thanks to Chuck Gilligan for steering me -- these guys do Britain & Mike Skinner proud.

•   After that last post I hate to subject you good people to a Megan McArdle streak, but this is irresistible:

Fans of Tbogg already grok the internet tradition of conflating McArdle's conspicuous-consumerism with her crap political views, but I  think anyone can appreciate that she's seriously miffed Canada has $1.4K Thermomixes but America does not (guess the one she was kvelling about in 2011 got a dent in it or something), and gets her editor to indulge her in speculating at 1,400-word length on the Economix, e.g. "QVC's 'gadget' price point seems to top out at 'Dyson vacuum cleaner,'" tee hee. If they haven't sent her a new "test" model by now this isn't the rotting corpse of a Republic I grew up in.

•   It's clearer than ever that Obama consciously trolls rightwing idiots as a hobby. I'm not sure what to think about the universal voting proposal, but it has elicited some choice gibberish from Peggy Noonan:
Most of us are moved by the sight of citizens lined up at the polls on Election Day. We should urge everyone to care enough to stand in that line. But we should not harass or bother those who, with modesty and even generosity, say they are happy to leave the privilege of the ballot to those who are engaged.
How dare we refuse their generosity by demanding they participate in our stupid "democracy"! Next we'll be demanding they pay taxes! (I wonder what the Crazy Jesus Lady thinks about Ben Carson's request at CPAC last year that conservatives drag their grandparents to the polls even if they say, “I’ve given up on America, I’m just waiting to die.”) Oh, and here's Noonan explaining her apparently brand new idea that Presidents named Bush are bad (except the next one -- he'll be swell!):
George W. Bush broke his party after his 2004 re-election, in part with his immigration proposals and the way he advanced them, with aides insulting his GOP opponents with insults—“nativist,” they said—and, in the end, by two unwon wars.
That's up there with "He dressed badly and was not a good mixer,  in addition to being a serial killer."

•   Remember the Oppressed Children of Sperm Donors whose lamentations I covered a few years back? Well, they're back at The Federalist, where two anti-donor activists rally support for those Dolce & Gabbana guys who called test-tube kids "synthetic children." The authors note that some people were upset about this because they had donor-enabled offspring, nephews etc., and here's the authors' stern rejoinder:
It is important to note, however, that infants, toddlers, and all of these “miracle” beings are too young to protest their own objectification.
I hear ya, sister -- I didn't ask to be born into this fucking world, but my mother got knocked up in a time before abortion rights. Rough luck all around! Oh, and also:
I am indeed a human being. My liver, heart, hair, and enzymes all work the same. I’ve discovered it is my psychology that is different and not-quite-right, due to my conception.
No comment.

•   Since it's nearly the weekend, here is your latest installment of What Is Rod Dreher Whining About Now?
UPDATE: I’m all for praying with the body. We do that all the time in the Orthodox Church. But yoga is a Hindu discipline, not a Christian one, and the syncretism of mixing yoga with Christian worship is troubling.
This has been What Is Rod Dreher Whining About Now?

Tuesday, March 17, 2015


What is Rod Dreher Whining About Now? Some literary types have taken a vacation from reading white male writers:
The internet has been abuzz recently with debates over reading lists and reading habits. Writer K. Tempest Bradford caused a bit of a stir when she challenged readers to stop reading straight white cisgendered male authors for a year. Sunili Govinnage generated her share of outrage when she reported on her year spent deliberately not reading white authors.
As a normal person, I say: who gives a shit? Read whatever you like, free country, and as long as Dan Brown or his seasonal equivalent draws breath white male writers will still have a Place at The Table. But Rod Dreher -- well, to give you some idea, he reads this part of the Gawker story...
Many of the responses generated by these articles and initiatives have been supportive — even from those white male authors ‘targeted’ for exclusion.
...and responds thusly:
Of course. Dhimmis.
Eventually Dreher explains the moral imperative behind his condemnation of other people's choice of reading material.
You would scarcely believe the money and effort going into promoting my upcoming Dante book. Maybe it will pay off, but chances are it will not. The competition is unbelievably stiff. 
And even if a book does get a lot of media attention, that guarantees nothing. My 2006 book Crunchy Cons got a lot of favorable press and Internet discussion. There were good reviews in The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, a front page Washington Post Style section feature, and an All Things Considered essay from me, related to the book. And yet the book never made back its modest advance, and almost certainly never will.
Who says there's no God? Dreher goes on and on about hard it is for Rod Dreher to sell a book, till finally he gets down on one knee to tell us that when you buy a Rod Dreher book, you're striking a blow for freedom:
So, if you are one of the people willing to spend money on books, I say God bless you, no matter whose books you buy. Every writer who is not Stephen King or Danielle Steele or in that category is in the 99 percent. I hope you’ll buy good books, and I hope you will buy my books. But I’m glad you are buying books.
See? He's for inclusiveness, and those monsters who encourage you to buy Roxane Gay instead of him are for dhimmitude! The choice is clear, particularly if you're the type who buys books not to read but to leave about the house as identity signals.

This has been What is Rod Dreher Whining About Now?

Friday, March 06, 2015


It's a good morning for... well, actually, what isn't a good morning for Motörhead?

   His fellow conservatives are all blargh, Hitlery's doomed, so Jonah Goldberg must have thought "The E-mail Scandal Won’t Doom Hillary" would be a clever contrarian approach to the wingnut rage-of-the-moment that might earn him another Pulitzer No-Prize, or at least an extra box of fudge at dinner. Of course, to keep his readers from getting turned off, the Son of the Lewinsky Scandal has to front-load the column with a bunch of anti-Clinton bosh, and this is clearly the easiest part for him to write, though that doesn't mean that he can write it well:
The server was registered under the name Eric Hoteman — someone who doesn’t exist. But it’s almost surely Eric Hothem, a Washington financial adviser and former aide to Clinton who, according to the Associated Press, has been a technology adviser to the family. Tony Soprano would be envious.
Al Capone, too ([smacks forehead] "Breaking email rules! And I hadda evade income tax, like a dummy!").
Depending on whom you ask, this was a violation of Obama-administration policy, long-established State Department rules, the Federal Records Act, or all of the above. Moreover, outside the ranks of Clinton-Industrial Complex employees, contractors, and supplicants, there’s a rare bipartisan consensus that it was, to use a technical term, really, really shady.
This flimsy fart-cloud is our first hint that Goldberg doesn't actually know what kind of trouble Clinton may or may not be in, which presages the collapse of his thesis. First, he tells us Clinton will get away with whatever it is she did because she's so damn crafty she'll manage to withhold her most incriminating emails from Republican investigators -- that is, the "incriminating stuff could remain invisible — valuable snowflakes held back from a blizzard of chaff." (Look, if he could craft a decent metaphor, don't you think he'd have a less humiliating job?) In other words, he thinks Trey Gowdy and the boys are even stupider than you do. His second reason is -- pretty much his first reason:
This points to another reason why I think Clinton will survive this mess. If there’s a damning e-mail out there, it’s been deleted, and the relevant hard drive would be harder to find than Jimmy Hoffa’s body. So critics are probably left with the task of proving a negative.
Leaving aside the idea that prosecution in this case requires retrieving a hard drive (which ain't necessarily so), I would point out that we're still talking about whether the homebrew system itself is a punishable offense, and who has the standing to punish her for it. Talking about whether there's a "Well, my Dread Lord Satan, how's the cover-up of the murder of Ambassador Stevens going?" email Clinton is hiding someplace is like speculating on whether the server itself doubled as an illegal moonshine still. (By George, they'd have her then!) Even Goldberg seems to intuit this, and closes with more Clinton curses ("Nothing in this story is surprising... and certainly not the staggering hypocrisy") and even a just-you-wait, you'll-be-sorry whine...
At some point down the tracks, when yet another fetid cloud of Clintonism erupts into plain view, many smart liberals will look back at this moment as the time when they should have pulled the emergency brake and gotten off the Hillary train.
...of the sort you only hear from conservatives when they're starting to panic, or when, like Goldberg, they actually scare themselves.

•    Speaking of the wingnut equivalent of #SlatePitches, Matthew Continetti, many of whose offenses to reason (like his column during the Ebola scare, "The Case for Panic") have been detailed here, must have retucked his shirt so furiously when he thought of this one he injured a groin muscle:
I Don’t Love Spock
Column: President Obama’s favorite Star Trek character is an appeasing arrogant jerk
Ain't even kidding.
The president is not the only writer who has drawn comparisons between himself and Spock. I am also a Star Trek fan, but I admit I was somewhat confused by my rather apathetic reaction to Nimoy’s death.
Just like when my parents died. But we went over all that in the court-ordered therapy sessions. Haw! Stupid therapists!
And as I thought more about the president’s statement, I realized he identifies with the very aspects of the Spock character that most annoy me. I don’t love Spock at all. 
Not only do Spock’s peacenik inclinations routinely land the Enterprise and the Federation into trouble, his “logic” and “level head” mask an arrogant emotional basket case.
Princess Leia and Cheryl Tunt -- now they're a different story. They can hide his emails in their homebrew anytime! [retucks shirt] I wonder how much time Continetti devoted to figuring out who would be Kirk in this scenario. A Kirk who wanted to kill Spock, I guess, then deny earthlings health care and a minimum wage. (Is this what they call "non-canon"? I don't truck much with pencilnecks.)

•    By the way, if you're a fan of Dreher dudgeon, anti-gayRod is on a tear lately. First example:
We think of ISIS as anti-human, and we are right to. But...
Always a "but" with Dreher and Islamicist lunatics.
...what if the greater threat to humanity is not among the barbaric brigades of the Levant, but among the far more sophisticated barbarians at work in Silicon Valley?
You mean those tech assholes who are fucking up the Bay Area for the few remaining poors? Don't be silly -- Dreher's just heard some Singularity geeks and is as rattled, as you would expect of someone who hasn't looked at a magazine since William Gibson was a big deal. Accepting their assessment at face value, he sputters:
Will you people who sneer at the Benedict Option and think that it’s only about trying to get away from the queers finally understand that this stuff Harari is talking about is the kind of thing I say we must prepare to resist?
Surely there must be someplace where your paranoid fantasies and mine intersect -- for one thing, I have so many of them! Oh, and someone told poor Rod about the two boys kissing on The Fosters.
Shelley was right: Poets — that is, people who create art — really are the unacknowledged legislators of the world.
[Looks again -- confirms that yes, Dreher is actually talking about network television.]
If you as a conservative parent are not pushing back against pop culture propaganda as pop culture is pushing against your kids, you all are going to get steamrollered. Turning the TV off is a start, but this is where we are now as a culture, and if all you give them is “thou shalt not,” it won’t be enough.
Clearly your own godly example won't cut any ice with your hellspawn, so it's time to lock them young'uns in the Jesus shed till this whole gay thing blows out. I half expect to see Dreher cutting some guy's head off in a video one day.

Sunday, March 01, 2015


What say we start the week with Rod Dreher crying Get ready! The Worr-uld is coming to an end! This time the big issue is trans people born one thing who call themselves the other thing. Normals say who gives a shit but Dreher sees the End Times, and he is especially disappointed in the liberals, who should after all understand why it's so important:
This is a principle that the American Left can see is terribly damaging when put into practice by those who clear-cut forests. But they are blind when it applies to human beings clear-cutting, so to speak, their own bodies.
It's a wonder we haven't got abortion clinic protesters putting in extra shifts outside practices that do gender assignment surgery. Maybe harrying scared pregnant women is a less daunting prospect than confronting someone like Fallon Fox.

Also, per Dreher, Dante put Ulysses in Hell because of his "corrupt desire to defy the gods in pursuit of his own will," and "this is us. This is the West. This is America, 2015," with our homos and test-tube two-daddy babies and space travel, too, no doubt -- imagine what Dante would have thought of that! Not to mention harnessing the power of lightning to run artificial brain-machines -- so the Saving Remnant better Get Ready:
This is not going to be stopped by us. But one day, it is going to stop. We know where this is going. The task of the traditionalist today is to live in such a way that truth and sanity survive the darkening of our collective intellect. That we not forget who we are, and what is. This is hard work, but as the Noah myth should instruct us, it is past time to start building that cultural ark.
The ark will no doubt be filled with VeggieTales, well-beaten Bibles, and Brother Rod's approved reading list, which will be fine until some passenger finds it insufficient and in the margins of some Flannery O'Connor paperback defies the Captain in pursuit of his own will. Then come the floating witch trials and the Aguirre The Wrath of God ending. Go with God, dummies!
It may well be that this civilization continues in relative peace and prosperity for some time. I certainly hope it does, because I live in it.
Also because he's about to fuck off on yet another foreign foodie vacation:
Really, though, Anthony Bourdain’s CNN show episode on Lyon, with Daniel Boulud, put things over the top. I’ve watched it three times on Netflix streaming. I want to go eat at a bouchon or two (or three), and I want to make a pilgrimage to Reynon the traiteur, and taste his saucisson à cuire. I think this must be the first time I’ve ever chosen a travel destination solely for the purpose of eating.
Been to Lyon? Where should we stay? Where should we eat? Talk to me.
How about you stay in a monk's cell and pray for a clue?

UPDATE. Comments are very good. Jeffrey_Kramer:
I'm not sure whether the literature to be preserved on the Cultural Ark would lean more towards the Autobiography of Saint Teresa or the collected works of Anders Breivik
And JayB, by coincidence, recently happened to be passing through Lyon himself:
Since Rod asked, I did come across a gay AND 'libertine' Sauna on the Croix-Rousse. I didn't partake, but someone with his hangups would surely find something a bit rogue going on. I'm sure he'll be there in a week with a camera, a notepad and a heart filled with angry curiosity. Bon champs, you dickhead.

Tuesday, February 03, 2015


Rod Dreher:
It’s a pet peeve of mine when NPR’s Hispanic on-air reporters conclude their pieces by pronouncing their names in a strong Spanish accent. It’s a gesture that calls attention to itself. I’m not sure why, but sometimes you hear American reporters — and not just Hispanic ones — pronounce the name of Latin American cities with a distinct Spanish accent... 
The identity politics of liberals spoil everything.
Throughout his post, you will find hundreds of words about how Dreher is really just talking about proper communication, and hey, he softens his accent when he goes on the radio so what's the big deal, and "who gets to define what is an authentically black sound, anyway? And why are the broadcast-neutral voices of most NPR personalities considered 'white'?" etc. He seems to be afraid the big bad multiculturalists want to make his beloved NPR sound like a ghetto barbershop.

But it's the quoted bit that really lives for me. Imagine Dreher bristling as some insolent Dominican pronounces his own name too Spanishy! I suppose he gets it from this:

The rest of his posts are about political correctness, natch.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


Professional scold Rod Dreher is on a tear. Here's one called "The Myth of Islamophobia":
The truth is that [journalists] loathe ordinary unenlightened people more than they fear jihadists. There is always this great unwashed mob of right-wing lunatics just looking for an excuse to carry out pogroms against Muslims in the wake of Islamic terrorism. The fact that these Muslim-bashing episodes are always just that — episodic, I mean — never seems to change their minds.
Come on, Muhammad, it doesn't happen that often! Jeez, you guys are as bad as the blacks.
Remember the fear in the media prior to the release of Mel Gibson’s Passion of the Christ movie — that the film would set off anti-Jewish pogroms around the country? Didn’t happen, did they? The concern within media circles was real; I remember it well. And yet, it was absurd. I knew that at the time, as did just about every Christian.
See, anti-Semitism is bullshit, too. Except in France, and whenever it's convenient to say so.

But this one's the jewel. Dreher starts out about how France suffers religious maniacs like the Hebdo assassins because it doesn't respect the authority of organized religion of the right kind anymore. Then:
I thought about that this weekend when I saw a photo of a blasphemously anti-Christian cover that Charlie Hebdo once published (it depicts the Holy Trinity having three-way anal sex). It would not occur to me that anyone should lay a hand on the Charlie Hebdo artists or editors who produced that filth...
Yeah, you knew there'd be a but (and its homophone! Keep reading!):
...But the decadence represented by Charlie Hebdo is probably a greater threat to Western civilization than anything the Islamists can dream up, and it’s important to keep that straight even as we defend the right to free expression and a free press.
Why a greater threat? Because it belittles religions other than the One True? Ha ha, kidding! On and on about the horrible atheists and various Dissolutions of the Monasteries -- "This is what the party of Charlie Hebdo has done to France since 1789: murdered its Christian soul, and called it progress" -- until Dreher's agon reaches, or rather suddenly collides with, its logical conclusion:
Scrolling my Facebook feed last night, I found this New York magazine feature about the season premiere of HBO’s Girls, which featured a scene in which a man performs oral sex on his girlfriend’s anus. It turns out that this is a thing in pop culture now.
"In pop culture"? Please, nobody tell him. Also, Dreher has "an Orthodox Christian friend" who feels the exact same way about things: "He talks about how his parish is pretty faithful," says Dreher, "but so many of the kids raised in it still get sucked in and away from their faith by the culture of Lena Dunham, of Charlie Hebdo, and the rest." Sucked away! Christianity is licked! These two should do a podcast while Wachet Auf plays in the background, or vice-versa.

In the end, all the stupid atheists join ISIS and Rod is ascended into heaven in divine recognition of his faithful mopes. Four stars! (h/t Will Menaker)

Tuesday, December 30, 2014


(Here's the third installment of a year-end bottom-ten of the lowlights of 2014, culled from my archives and elsewhere. The previous installments are here and here. Read 'em and weep!)

4. The Eternal ObamaHitler. In January Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit addressed some Obama conspiracy theories: “…that the NSA may have been relaying intelligence about the Mitt Romney campaign to Obama operatives, or that Chief Justice John Roberts' sudden about-face in the Obamacare case might have been driven by some sort of NSA-facilitated blackmail.”

Yeah, you might shrug, there are plenty such crazy notions out there. But Reynolds went on: “A year ago, these kinds of comments would have been dismissable as paranoid conspiracy theory. But now, while I still don't think they're true, they're no longer obviously crazy. And that's Obama's legacy: a government that makes paranoid conspiracy theories seem possibly sane.”

Reynolds’ main theme was the IRS “scandal,” one of a long series on alleged wheels-within-wheels Obamaspiracies that have not gotten the traction he and his colleagues think they deserve. But it’s his idea that crackpot theories about Obama are somehow legit because of other crackpot theories about Obama that’s really interesting. There are many conservatives on the internet who sound as if they’re writing from survivalist treehouses where they wait, gun at the ready, for UN troops to try and put them in FEMA camps; you expect such people to peddle every daffy Obama story that churns up. But Reynolds’ theory may help explain why the ones who manage to hold down jobs in the non-tinfoil world also circulate them; perhaps they do so more in sorrow than in psychotic rage, clucking (as Reynolds did recently, in a column speculating that a Congressional spending billing passed “because NSA has ‘dirt’ on John Boehner”), “Sad what this country has become under the Obama Machine.”

Or it may be that they’re just political operatives who’ll throw any shit that comes to hand. But I try to be generous.

You may know that GM had an ignition-switch problem that it handled badly, possibly causing dozens of deaths. But did you know, as PJ Media’s Bryan Preston reported, “the Obama administration may have been covering up union shop GM’s deadly ignition switch flaw”? Wake up sheeple! Fox News’ Eric Bolling went so far as to suggest that the Obama White House “bankrupted GM" -- that is, bailed them out -- " make sure that the old GM was responsible for these deaths because they knew they had a problem and the new GM could go on with business as usual and then they would look like heroes.” “Did GM Bailout Cost Lives?” asked wingnut foundation the National Legal and Policy Foundation. “Congress needs to take a very close look at this — and perhaps the newly-Republican Senate will do so after January,” said Ed Morrissey of Hot Air. Maybe they can work it in between #Benghazi hearings.

But it’s not all tyrannizing and murdering in this Obama alt-reality universe: There’s also Obama playing pool, which became a thing (“WHILE THE WORLD BURNS, OBAMA FIDDLES, GOLFS, AND SHOOTS POOL”). Also Obama saluting a Marine with a cup of tea in his hand, ditto (“speaks volumes about President Obama, not only concerning his underlying disdain for our military, but also as regards basic decency”). And that tan suit business which, Jesus, I’m looking at it now and I still can’t figure it out. And golf, but that’s sort of an evergreen with them by now.

As seen by the brethren, Obama’s villainy informs everything he says and does; it’s so complete it’s mythic, like the strength of Paul Bunyan or the wiles of Br'er Rabbit. If Obama skips a military funeral, for example, it suddenly becomes unprecedented, even though other Presidents have done it. The most outrageous statements may be attributed to Obama and they will be believed, even without evidence. When his friends celebrate his birthday, Mollie Hemingway of The Federalist explains, it pollutes the very institution of birthdays (“One, it’s childish. Birthdays are for kids”). Why, he commits treason even when he frees an American P.O.W. — that’s how twisted he is!

Despite this superhuman power, it goes without saying that Obama is also wrong about everything — for example, he says “horseshit” when he clearly should have said “bullshit” (this from Power Line’s Paul Mirengoff, a master of both).

Given this view, it should come as no surprise that their rhetoric verges on the hysterical when they discuss him — see National Review’s Andrew C. McCarthy (“So now Obama, like a standard-issue leftist dictator, is complementing lawlessness with socialist irrationality”) and Deroy Murdock (“Obama now rules by decree… Obama’s predecessors have signed executive orders and, more or less, left it at that. But Obama pounds his chest as he does so”), Politico’s Rich Lowry (“Barack Obama, American Caudillo”), the Washington Post’s Marc Thiessen ("Is Obama considering surrendering to the Taliban?”), Rod Dreher ("as far as the Obama administration is concerned, traditional Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are vestiges of barbarism”), former Texas GOP Senate candidate Darren Yancy (“a 6 year reign of terror against Christianity, liberty, the Constitution, self responsibility, employment, and economic opportunity”), actual Congressmembers Rep. Mark Meadows, R-NC (“he has declared war, and not just on Congress but the American people”) and Rep. Randy Weber, R-TX (“On floor of house waitin on 'Kommandant-In-Chef"'... the Socialistic dictator who's been feeding US a line or is it 'A-Lying?’”), et alia.

Pundits like to tell us that political mudslinging isn’t anything new — look at Adams and Jefferson, etc. But with all respect to James Callender, the Founders lived in a simpler time before rapid-response teams, social media, and vast armies of citizen journalists who have turned what used to be quadrennial mudslinging into a constant, suffocating shitstorm.

3. Torture as an American value. I’m not sure how old you have to be to remember when torturing prisoners was something the United States simply didn’t do. As a lad I, like many Americans, was shocked to learn about the My Lai massacre; if I had been then told that Lt. William Calley also waterboarded and hung from chains his Vietnamese victims, whether they were Viet Cong or not, I’m sure I would have been even more shocked. Maybe Dirty Harry did that shit, but not John Wayne.

I am old and jaded now, but I must admit, when after the Senate released the torture report in December a number of Americans, including a former Vice-President of the United States, told us that torture was great and it was actually the citizens who balked at it that were anti-American, I was still a little shocked.

It’s not that I expected better of the cheerleaders. The Republican response to the Senate Report, for example, was just the kind of ass-covering that could have been predicted from members of that august Party. “The rendition, detention, and interrogation program [the CIA] created, of which enhanced interrogation was only a small part,” they said, “enabled a stream of collection and intelligence validation that was unprecedented.” That is, we haven’t been attacked since, so it stands to reason everything we did, including the 13th Century barbarities, must have helped.

And I can’t say I was exactly surprised by those conservatives who don’t belong to any Congressional committees who nevertheless jumped up and said torture, what’s the problem? Like Commentary’s Max Boot, who seethed that “the release of the Senate report will only aid our enemies who will have more fodder for their propaganda mills” — as if the torture weren’t worse than people finding out about it; as if in fact the citizens of the nations we conquered weren't already well aware and we, the American people, weren’t the last to find out.

There was the libertarian perspective from Reason’s Scott Shackford: The torture itself wasn’t the problem — the problem was Big Gummint. “Strip out the torture and terrorism and you've got any other troubled government program,” Shackford shrugged, and offered what he must have thought was a brilliant correlative: “Was the Department of Health and Human Services honest with those charged with oversight about the state of Obamacare health insurance exchanges prior to their launch, and has it succeeded in providing affordable health insurance? It's the same argument.” Obamacare is torture too, basically, but you don’t see Democrats complaining about that!

About the attempted deep thoughts on the subject by Jonah Goldberg (“In other words, we have the moral vocabulary to talk about kinds of killing — from euthanasia and abortion to capital punishment, involuntary manslaughter and, of course, murder — but we don’t have a similar lexicon when it comes to kinds of torture”), the less said the better.

There were also straight-up psychos like the person who wrote “Yes, Christians Can Support Torture” for The Federalist. (Depressingly representative quote: “Prolonged torture designed to crush the spirit of an individual is different from interrogation techniques, even ones that inflict pain.”) Probably the nadir, though, is represented by internet tough guy Steve Hayward of Power Line, who snarled at “the handwringing of the media and liberals” and suggested in future we just take the detainees (whom he took care to call “terrorists,” although a significant number of them had no proven connection with terrorism — that’s how professional propagandists work, folks) out of CIA custody and “hand them over to the Hells’ Angels,” haw haw.

The most interesting (in the clinical sense) part of Hayward’s essay addressed the reasonable conclusion that if we torture, we’re not better than other totalitarian regimes; nonsense, Hayward huffed, American exceptionalism “does not and has never meant that the United States is above or immune to the basic rules of political life, especially the basic instinct to defend itself against enemies. The fact that we do so without apology (except from liberals) is a good part of what makes the U.S. exceptional today…” So this is the conservative defense of a practice condemned by civilization for centuries: That we torture, but we’re still better because we do so with an all-American sneer on our faces.

The surprise wasn’t that these people would lie about torture and, when the lie was exposed, just laugh about it — I’ve known that about these people for a long time. I guess what shocked me was the confidence they showed that ordinary Americans would agree with them, and that their confidence might be justified.

(More later.)