Wednesday, May 30, 2018


You guys know how I feel about this stuff: Until you're ready to protect fast food and daycare workers from being fired for their social media speech, I'm not here from your blubbering over celebrities like Roseanne.

That's not a rhetorical offer, by the way, but a sincere one. I don't give a shit if the Hitler Channel wants to run Roseanne's Heil Hitler Racist Comedy Hour, where its sponsors and supporters can be noted and shunned, so long as ordinary citizens can flip off Trump and put it on Twitter without getting fired for it.

But they can't. So fuck her.

Even the usual suspects have, for the most part, looked at the facts and decided this was not the fake free speech hill they wanted to lie on. Rod Dreher, as you might expect, runs with the pack but can't even do that right:
“But,” you say, “that’s all the NFL owners are doing with the mandatory National Anthem rule: protecting their business interests.” You have something of a point, but the comparison is faulty. A quiet political protest is not the same thing as calling a black person an ape. Colin Kaepernick’s pig socks are in that ballpark, certainly, but the NFL kneelers on the whole aren’t wearing pig socks.
Like Moses, Kaepernick is denied entry to Dreher's promised land because of his pig socks.
It is a sign of civic health that someone who is making a fortune for a TV network can still lose her position when she indulges in disgusting rhetoric like that. Some things you can’t say in public without consequence. Where we draw that line will always be under contention, but we ought to all agree that Roseanne Barr crossed it.
I'll bet Dreher thinks the Beatles should have been driven from our shores after John Lennon said they were more popular than Jesus.

Others among the brethren find new ways to embarrass themselves -- Anthony Scaramucci, the erstwhile Trump mouthpiece who encourages people to call him "The Mooch," complained of being discriminated against as an Italian-American ("When I was called a human pinkie ring and a goombah while in the @Whitehouse that was deemed acceptable comedy. Double standard"). That's even better than when mobster Joe Colombo's Italian-American Anti-Defamation League went after The Godfather.

And rightwing pencil-neck Roger Kimball does the ooh-such-po-li-ti-cal cor-rect-ness simper-strut at The Spectator:
Uh oh. Was the tweet in bad taste? Indubitably. Was it racist? Yep. Was it the worst thing ever in the history of civilization? According to ABC, which hosted her new, extremely popular show, the answer appears to be, Yes: nothing so awful has ever besmirched the escutcheon of humanity.
You liberals act like racism is the very worst thing in the whole entire world but what about World War II, or that time a black guy glared at me?
Yes, it was in bad taste. So what? There was a time when bad taste was not a (professional) death sentence. Under the reign of political correctness, that time has passed.
Does one of you have the patience to explain to Kimball for me the difference between, say, the race jokes in Blazing Saddles and calling a black lady a monkey?* Best part:
I do not watch television, so I never saw Roseanne Barr’s show. I understand, however, that it was a breath of fresh air, not so much conservative as simply independent.
Percy Dovetonsils doesn't sully himself with idiot box emissions, but knows this show must be good because Trump likes it and the star is a racist.

UPDATE. *I thought everyone knew this, but apparently there are law professors who don't know, or affect not knowing, that calling black people monkeys is like Racism 101:
Yes, the problem of likening humans to apes, an interesting variation on the age-old resistance to the notion of evolution. We are primates, all of us, the same order as the apes. Bush was "Chimpy McHitler," and let's not forget that time Trump sued Bill Maher for joking that Trump was the son of an orangutan.
Speaking of law perfessers: "ABC hands midterms to Trump, GOP," says Instapundit Glenn Reynolds. Maybe they can get Tim Allen to call Michelle Obama a coon and get fired -- that'll really excite the base! Then they can all tell us that lots of different people are compared to raccoons, isn't that what Michelle Wolf did to Sarah Huckabee, you're the real racists, etc.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018


...about conservatives' Memorial Day and how it was just a little off. Not sure I quite got my finger on it, but it just seemed as if they weren't as comfortable in their own, militaristic, super-patriotic skin as they used to be.

Among the outtakes were the wingnut Memorial Day observances of America's Civil War -- which were as twisty as you might expect.  Spurred by a year-old Robin Wright New Yorker essay about the “new kind of civil war” in which the United States seemed enmeshed, PJ Media’s Michael Walsh blames America's divisions exclusively on liberals: America's only “polarized,” he says, because “Democrats (just as they did in 1860) refuse to accept the results of the last presidential election"; also: "if there's violence -- and there is -- it comes almost entirely from the Left, in the forms of Antifa, Black Lives Matter and other groups of provocateurs... Keeping the people downtrodden, miserable, and resentful has long been the key to violent Leftist revolutions," etc.

After telling us how America sees through all the lefty lies and  "Americans are finding they have more money in their pockets, 'Now Hiring' signs are sprouting up all over'" -- boy, where have I heard that before -- Walsh finally declares,  “on this Memorial Day, when we mourn and honor our American war dead -- Democrats and Republicans alike -- we need to reject [the left’s] constant provocation and remember what unites us, instead of what divides us.” Clasp hands o’er the bloody chasm, indeed!

Our old pal and Washington Post columnist Megan McArdle responds to Wright’s essay with a tweet for the ages: “I am struggling to imagine what sort of army could be fielded by the ‘twee cosmopolitan elite’ side of America's culture war.” After a dunkfest by wonks and warriors alike, McArdle sniffs, “Some number of men seem to have felt that I was impugning their manhood, rather than heaping scorn on the notion of an American Civil War” -- shades of her accusing me of "snide sexism and heteronormative stereotypes"! Why, next people will be saying Gina Haspel isn't a feminist watershed! -- then claims “my mother, for the first time, apparently made the mistake of googling my name. I had to sit her down and have The Conversation about internet trolls.” Wait’ll she tells Mom about goatse!

Wednesday, May 23, 2018


Baseball Crank, writing under his pen name Dan McLaughlin at National Review, wants you to know he thinks Racist Lawyer Aaron Schlossberg "deserves public moral condemnation" for "letting fly a racially incendiary tirade at Spanish-speaking workers in a crowded Madison Avenue restaurant." (Actually Schlossberg told them he was calling ICE on them, which, given the viciousness of that agency toward even citizens who merely speak Spanish, is much worse.)

This being National Review, you knew there would be a "but" -- except McLaughlin uses the more highfalutin' "although of course" instead, because he is not just talking about some racist who "had the misfortune" to get caught racisting -- he's also stickin' it to the liberals with classy literary references!

See, says McLaughlin, when modern people read The Scarlet Letter they engage in "snickers, sneering, and judgmental tut-tutting at those awful Puritan prudes who would force an adulterous woman to wear an outward sign of the shame of her sin for her entire life and endure communal shunning over her violation of a social norm that we, in our own era, would not even regard as a crime." Not sure where B-Head has observed all this sneering and snickering -- maybe in fever dreams, or at a showing of that Demi Moore movie.

Anyway, this alleged sneerfest shows what hypocrites we moderns are because Schlossberg is like Hester Prynne. No, really -- when we are moved to condemn Schlossberg,
This is very much the same impulse that motivated the Puritans... In other words, we see it in exactly the same terms that the Puritans saw adultery, which could trigger violence, blackmail, and produce illegitimate children who could face infanticide or become wards of the state...  And just as today, the punishment is unequally distributed: Her lover’s identity is publicly unknown, so she wears the scarlet letter alone (just as Schlossberg is punished not just for his sin but for the happenstance of it going viral), yet it is also visited on her innocent dependent child.
You see what he's getting at: You modern sex people are the real Puritans, because just as Hawthorne's Puritans punished poor Hester for  premarital sex, you want to punish poor Schlosberg for racism. And this condemnation inspires the same pity and terror, at least in the breast of B-Head. Get a load:
Morally, Schlossberg deserves public moral condemnation, although of course it’s fair to ask — just as Hawthorne implicitly asked — how far we should go, and how indelibly the stain should endure. That’s a question our criminal justice system has wrestled with for years, but in some ways it’s an even harder one to answer when there’s no point at which an offender can say he has paid his debt to society. And of course, as critics of the Puritans fairly noted, we should consider leavening moral justice with mercy and some humility about our own sins.
 "How far we should go, and how indelibly the stain should endure"? Buddy, this all happened last week. There's plenty of time for Schlossberg, as a connected white guy, to move on from his noncriminal immorality. If Ben Domenesch can do it so can he!
But what is striking is the fact that the sorts of people most eager to exact punishment on Schlossberg are precisely the same folks who would lecture us no end about how terrible it is to be morally judgmental and how backward the world of the Puritans was...  People who say they don’t want to judge sin invariably just want to judge different sins.
Yeah -- the Puritans wanted to punish women for premarital sex, but you libtards are mean to a guy who yells racist abuse at people -- same diff!

I'm all for showing forgiveness, but as with Rod Dreher and the Barbecue Complaint Lady, I notice 1.) guys like this only ever plead forgiveness for bigots, and 2.) they only use forgiveness as a pretense to attack someone who isn't racist.

Monday, May 21, 2018


Sometimes I just want to get these things in the record in case some of our survivors are intelligent and want to know where it all went wrong:

You may think the editors made it look worse than it is, but uh uh: National Review's Clay Routledge does in fact think we lavish too much affection on animals. He quotes pet insurance statistics and marvels that "there are now even dog spas and resorts" -- not like in the old days, when Grandpa cut open Ole Blue so he could climb inside and get warm during a blizzard!

You may be wondering why Routledge gives a shit, considering that many of National Review's donors probably spend more on yacht maintenance and monkey-gland infusions than us peons spend on pets. The reason is revealed when he gets to the now-traditional Attack on Avocado-Toast-Munching Millennials:
A 2017 survey found that 33 percent of first-time home-buying Millennials say that finding a better space or yard for their dogs influenced their decision to buy a home, while only 25 percent cited marriage or plans for marriage and only 19 percent cited the birth or expected birth of child.
Routledge is clearly trying to engender panic among his geezer subscribers over the decline of white baby births. The young'uns are all crazy about fur-children, like frustrated spinsters in old movies, and it ain't nachurul! And why?
I’d like to focus on two specific possibilities, both of which implicate the individualistic nature of contemporary American culture.
Individualism -- that cursed legacy of the godless Enlightenment!
In our individualistic culture, we often privilege self-esteem over characteristics such as responsibility, loyalty, duty, and sacrifice. We also coddle children and teens to protect them from the social risks and emotional pains of life. But doing so is not without its costs. By teaching our kids to focus primarily on their own happiness, we may be failing to convey that life’s most meaning-providing and socially-fulfilling goals are often stressful, can make us temporarily unhappy, and require concession.
So if you're nice to your dog, and maybe prefer his company to, say, Clay Routledge's, it means you're an emotional cripple -- unable to bond with humans. This is, on its face, horseshit -- I know many people who love their pets and are also good with people, and I bet you do too. But if you're a conservative peddling Our Fallen World narratives, the usual go-to outrages like Rap and Socialism get wearisome and one has to find new things to bitch about.

Also, there's just something so natural about conservatives attacking people for showing unconditional kindness and compassion toward other living creatures.

(P.S. Believe it or not, this isn't the first article like this I've discovered: See my consideration of the Federalist essay, "Having Pets Instead Of Kids Should Be Considered A Psychiatric Disorder." That one's a little long on blood-'n'-soil, as Federalist essays tend to be.)


...about conservative reactions to the Santa Fe shooting, which to my practiced eye betray a falling-off in commitment; it's as if you can see, like a palimpsest over each Second Amendment love letter, the faint inscription, "Look, you know it's bullshit, I know it's bullshit, but business is business."

There's plenty of stupid to go around, but among the outtakes I give extra credit to Hot Air’s Karen Townsend, who not only defended Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick's door-blaming ("He’s right – two or three guards can’t be at all doors at all times"), but also offered her readers this silver lining in the cloud of blood:
Though some of the usual voices came forward to politicize this tragedy, it should be noted that the aftermath of the Santa Fe High School shooting unfolded differently than the one in Parkland, Florida. None of these students were coming forward to be used as the new spokespeople for the gun-grabbing left.
Ten dead, but at least they didn't make a fuss about taking one for the team.

Thursday, May 17, 2018


Sometimes it's just good to shut out all the jibber-jabber and look at the situation as if we were all still normal people.

Trump's at one of his stupid events and some sheriff mentions MS-13; Trump, doing the usual stream-of-semiconsciousness slurring he does whenever foreigners of a certain hue are mentioned, says something absurdly offensive. Times being what they are, I have to reproduce the relevant section -- not for the Trumpkins who are deaf to evidence, but just to remind you and me what actually happened:
SHERIFF MIMS: Thank you. There could be an MS-13 member I know about — if they don’t reach a certain threshold, I cannot tell ICE about it. 
THE PRESIDENT: We have people coming into the country, or trying to come in — and we’re stopping a lot of them — but we’re taking people out of the country. You wouldn’t believe how bad these people are. These aren’t people. These are animals. And we’re taking them out of the country at a level and at a rate that’s never happened before. And because of the weak laws, they come in fast, we get them, we release them, we get them again, we bring them out. It’s crazy.
The meaning is not really in dispute. We can't even say that it would be different if someone other than Trump said it, because if someone other than Trump said it and it were pointed out to that person what it sounded like, unless that person were a Nazi or the near equivalent, he or she would attempt to explain themselves and probably be slightly embarrassed that he or she had allowed themselves to be so disgracefully misapprehended.

But instead wingnuts screamed that Trump meant only MS-13, for what else could a sensible person like Trump mean, and in fact the Real Outrage is that liberals are supporting MS-13. The first proposition is asserted by replacement-level douchebags like this --

-- and the even further-out secondary proposition is asserted by Times-endorsed "cool kid philosophers" and Intellectual Dark Websters (you know, morons) like this --

In response the mainsteam media falls all over itself to appease and agree, yes, the President could not possibly have meant what it sounded like he said; and Trump lopes a hammy arm around the neck of the mainstream media and says oh, yeah, right, I meant that other thing.

I'm never a fan of the 11-dimension-chess POV where natural reactions are treated like Machiavellian gambits, notwithstanding this has become everyone's default POV in the Age of This Is Why Trump Won. And in this case, in which you have a million wingnuts screaming not only that Trump would never slander immigrants (when that is self-evidently most of his shtick and his appeal) but also that liberals are in favor of MS-13, I think it makes even more sense to step back and try to imagine: What would a normal person -- of which we have millions more in the country than political obsessives, thank God -- think about this? Would he or she really look at Trump, who's been what he's been, and the Democrats, who've been what they've been, and think: You're right, Trump's just being fair and the Democrats are openly supporting Latin American drug gangs?

If you first reaction is to say that's exactly what they think, that's an understandable mistake -- the mainsteam media is so far up Trump's ass that it daily, unthinkingly disseminates the impression that Trump is normal and all America is one big Trump rally. But neither the vote totals nor the poll numbers support this -- and neither does my, nor your, experience of ordinary people -- and I don't just mean (though I certainly don't exclude) academics and intellectuals and public union employees, but also carpenters and crossing guards and waitresses and landscapers, and other folks who are not included among the caricatures of American voters we read about in the major newspapers that tell us the Real Americans spend all days siting in Pennsyltucky diners telling New York Times reporters how Obama let the Ordinary Diner-Sitting American down -- notwithstanding that Democrats have been flipping dozens of Congressional seats since Trump got in.

In other words, the American People may not agree with you on everything, but that doesn't make them dumb -- and certainly not as dumb as wingnut crackpots want you to believe they are. So don't you believe it. Hold fast, have faith, tell the truth, and shame the devil.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018


That lady who called the cops on that black-people picnic in Oakland, got embarrassed, and cried, was pretty funny/sad, as have been the associated photoshops. But a man of God has asked that we spare a thought for the lady who called the cops -- the internet can be cruel, he says, and she must be suffering from all the negative attention, so let us HA J/K IT'S ROD DREHER so of course his brief pretense of Christian charity is really just a gimmick to get you to listen to how scared of black people he is:
Here’s a story: We lived in an apartment complex not too long ago. There were three young unmarried guys living in the flat above ours. They would get loud on the weekend. We decided that being good neighbors meant that we should put up with the banging and hooting until 10pm, but not after that, because that was bedtime. The first few occasions we went up to ask them to knock it off, they were nice about it. But then they got obnoxious, usually after they had been drinking. Finally one night, after multiple attempts to ask them to stop, we had to call the apartment security people. We didn’t want to be those neighbors, but they left us no choice.

The difference is that those bad neighbors were causing actual harm, yelling and banging on the floor and playing loud music until late in the night. The people grilling in the park were not harming Barbecue Griper one bit. Still, had the jerks upstairs been three young black guys, not white guys, I wonder if I would have said anything to them at all, for fear of them turning it into a racial confrontation. If I had called apartment security on them, like I eventually did with the white guys, after they ignored our repeated requests to stop banging on the floor, etc., would they have confronted me in the parking lot with a smartphone camera, calling me a racist, and distributing it to social media, and turning me into a racist pariah?
Too bad about that lady, but the real victim is Brother Rod who is persecuted in his fantasies by race-card-wielding black revelers who are much worse than the actual white people who gave him a hard time.

Later in the column Dreher yells at Ta-Nahisi Coates, as one does, then gives us one of his patented "Reader" "Letters" in which some guy says that first, "This lady is NOT white. It is clear to me from her facial features and body type that her racial and ethnic background is mixed " -- trust him, he's spent a lot of time on these things! -- and barbecues in Oakland are a fire hazard ("Oakland Hills fire of 1991 anyone? Google images. I survived it") and "people regularly, openly and brazenly break the law in Oakland and asking them 'nicely' to desist DOES NOT WORK" -- you Rod Dreher readers all know what he means and if you don't, he inevitably makes it clear:
Oakland, especially the area around Lake Merritt, is in a state of complete lawlessness. And no one cares. In fact, the lawlessness is celebrated as a kind of teenage, immature, passive aggressive rebelliousness. You can’t tell me what to do! Especially if you’re white – because that’s, you know, intrinsically racist. Their sad battle cry…..
It's the old story: I'm a white guy who has lived among the savages, and Breitbart says liberals all live in white places, so take it from me, they're sub-human. It's only a matter of time before Dreher moves his blog to Stormfront.

Monday, May 14, 2018


...about Bari Weiss' Intemallectual Dork Web, and all the wingnuts rushing to tell us that if we don't see how cross-partisan and free-thinking this passel of cranks and crackpots was, we're  intolerant and This Is Why Trump Won etc.

That Weiss column shook loose an avalanche of bullshit, for which I had not nearly room enough in the column, but I must make special mention of the New York Times' follow-ups -- first, Michelle Goldberg defending Weiss from a really unique perspective: Goldberg reveals she was “red-pilled” by seeing Israelis persecuting Palestinians in Hebron, and considers her “transformation not unlike the one my colleague Bari Weiss described in her recent article on what’s been called the ‘Intellectual Dark Web'...” Surprisingly, the Dark Web guys haven't rushed to thank her for this, and poor Goldberg now has to worry about being snubbed at the  good parties by Eli "Check The Ratio" Lake.

Worse still is Gerard Alexander's "Liberals, You’re Not as Smart as You Think" rewrite of his 2010 Washington Post essay. It's every whining cliche about mean liberals turning poor, mush-brained Republicans into Trump monsters, but what's most annoying is the sloppiness of his accusations: First he claims liberals have "a lot of power to express values, confer credibility and celebrity and start national conversations that others really can’t ignore" -- which doesn't sound like "power" so much as that they're the kind of "chattering class" conservatives normally like to deride as irrelevant  -- then says "but this makes liberals feel more powerful than they are," which maybe he measured with a Liberal Feelsmeter but forgot to share the data with his readers. It's like a little Strawman Punch and Judy show.

Speaking of shit that would be unrecognizable to people who live in the real world, Matthew Continetti hops fully aboard the Cultural-Marxism nutwagon:
A renascent Marxism competes with, and to a large extent has been subsumed by, the ideology of multiculturalism and its attendant identity politics. 
It is this ideology and politics that have captured America's most prestigious intellectual, cultural, and media institutions. The university, Silicon Valley, Hollywood, and increasingly formerly "neutral" and "objective" platforms such as the New York Times and the Atlantic have come under the sway of racial and sexual dogmas and attitudes that brook no disagreement.
Republicans literally control the federal and most state governments, but in Continetti's Kampfire story liberals actually run everything through movies and college. If Continetti were circulating this conspiracy theory about real people, he'd have been involuntarily committed by now. (N.B. No, this is not a threat made from my exalted position as a big wheel in America's most prestigious intellectual, cultural, and media institutions.)

Friday, May 11, 2018


Everyone's crazy for the latest member of the Intellectual Dark Web, napping black-woman monitor Sarah Braasch!
The woman who called 911 to report that a Yale University student was taking a nap in a graduate student dorm has a history of making racially charged statements, and had also previously called police on another African American graduate student in the same building... 
According to Braasch’s Yale biography, she is currently pursuing her fifth degree, an MA in philosophy, to “address the sub-human legal status of the world’s women at the source.” However, a trawl through some of her previous writings reveals some troubling examples of racist dogma. In a 2010 post for the blog Humanist, Braasch brags about how she won a middle school debate on the pros and cons of slavery — while on the side advocating it.
“I led our team to victory,” she wrote. “The pro-slavery contingent defeated the abolitionists because, in a democracy, in the land of the free, who are we to tell people that they can’t be slaves if they want to be?” Braasch goes on to mention that she is a “vehement opponent of hate crime legislation.”
I know what you're thinking -- someone has to take the bad side in debate club, and even though the members who get a liiiitttle too excited about defending slavery tend to be, um, of a certain personality type, there's no reason to assume that --
Be Careful What You Wish For (Why I Hate Hate Crimes Legislation, But I Love Hate Speech)
Never mind. More from Braasch's 2011 Pantheos posting:
I saw a woman in niqab on the UC Berkeley campus the other week. I was shocked. I didn’t approach her. I didn’t speak to her. She was with two other women in hijab, on the opposite side of a wide walkway. 
But, I was shocked. And, appalled. Here was a woman (or, at least, I assume she was a woman), in the heart of what is arguably the most politically liberal university campus and city in the US, a fount for civil rights and 60’s hippie culture, engaging in a brazen act of gender segregation and slavery in the egalitarian public space of a secular, liberal, constitutional, democratic republic...
Yeah, that's what I think when I see a Catholic nun in a habit. "You're as guilty as your oppressor!" I think, and I want to rip the slave cowl from her head, revealing the luxuriant hair underneath. I've never had the guts to do it but, like this brave free speech warrior, I can share my brilliance with you on the Intellectual Dark Web (or would if the New York Times, Washington Post et alia would publish me), which is what really counts.
For the rest of my life, if I should ever get into any kind of a dispute or altercation with anyone who claims to be Muslim, I could conceivably be prosecuted for a hate crime. My vehement anti-religion, and especially anti-Islam, ramblings on facebook, my personal blog, the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s website, and Daylight Atheism could be used against me in a court of law.
Well, one can always hope. Then she'd really be in solid with the Dork Web! Up next: A Twitter goon who likes to tell Democrats they're the real racists -- while calling himself Stonewall Jackson! The woods are full of free-speech warriors -- Bari Weiss will never want for copy!

Thursday, May 10, 2018


I'm an old fart and in many ways think like one; I am pleased, for example, when Pedro Martinez bitches about pitchers who save their pwecious widdle arms with short starts. Sure, the world and the game have both changed, but I'm an old fart, dammit, and there's not much left for me except the prospect of withering death, Gold Bond Medicated Powder, and the right to complain!

But I tell you, boys and girls: While I at first found the prospect of music and movie stars doing the Vatican drag at the Met Gala a tiny bit embarrassing -- not so much for the Church, though I am ex-Cath, as for the Met (since it's charging the little people more money to get in, I feel it shouldn't be glamming so hard) -- I was talked out of it pretty quick by all the wingnuts screaming sacrilege. Of course no one was more protective of the Mother Church than religion-hopper Rod Dreher, who starts by suggesting that one reason he became Catholic was the stink-eye he got from an old priest when he tried to touch him up for some old vestments for Halloween; the priest's "visibly shocked" refusal was "teaching me something about sacredness," says Dreher -- no doubt that it's a powerful weapon to use against the psychologically crippled.

And now we have rappers wearing mitres! Look, says Dreher, here are some dirty lyrics from a dirty, dirty Rihanna song: "Sticks and stones may break my bones/But chains and whips excite me." Gasp! Normally one only finds such disgusting sentiments on greeting cardsaprons and coffee mugs.

But Ross Douthat manages to top him: The Gala, he muses, is the fault of Vatican II.
It was the church’s own leadership that decided, in the years following the Second Vatican Council, that the attachment to the church as culture had become an impediment to the mission of preaching the gospel in the modern world. It was the leadership that embraced a different approach, in which Catholic Christianity would seek to enter more fully into modern culture, adopting its styles and habits — modernist and even brutalist church architecture, casual dress, guitar music...
And these concrete cathedrals and folk masses took the majesty out of the Magisterium:
The secular culture welcomed the church’s Protestantization and demystification and even secularization, praised the bishops and theologians who pursued it, and then simply pocketed the concessions and ignored the religious ideas those concessions were supposed to advance. Meanwhile, that same secular world maintained a consistent fascination, from “The Exorcist” down to, well, the Met Gala, with all the weirder parts of Catholicism that were supposedly a stumbling block to modernity’s conversion…
See, the plebes still go for that disused liturgy and pomp -- 'member when everybody bought that "Chant" record? And this, Douthat says, shows an opportunity for Churchy wingnuts:
Thus the only plausible approach for Catholicism is to offer itself, not as a chaplaincy within modern liberalism, but as a full alternative culture in its own right — one that reclaims the inheritance on display at the Met, glories in its own weirdness and supernaturalism, and spurns both accommodations and entangling alliances (including the ones that conservative Catholics have forged with libertarian-inflected right-wing political movements).
The future of conservatism: Bells, smells, and incels! I wonder whether Dreher or Douthat or any of the other crabby cons have considered even for a minute that what they're promoting is basically a fetish, and that what they appear to love about the Church has nothing to do with Jesus (the world's first SJW, after all) and everything to do with grandeur and power of a sort promoted by Donald Trump -- he's into all-gold stuff, too.

Tuesday, May 08, 2018


I have been writing for years about the Conservative Mood Swing -- a syndrome whereby conservatives lurch between triumphalism and victimhood: On the one hand, declaring themselves the avatars and theirs the true faith of America -- the current shorthand for this being the paternoster "This is why Trump won," and references to far-right beliefs as "center-right" and moderate-left beliefs as "far left"; on the other, declaring themselves pathetic victims of an all-powerful Left. It's how they manage to simultaneously stroke their yobbo fans, who get pissy and fall off the bandwagon if they're not constantly assured that They Are The Champions, and work the refs in the press with spectacular flops on the pitch.

Speaking of which, here's Bari Weiss at the New York Times about that "Intellectual Dark Web" that all the kids (i.e., none of them) are talking about:
Here are some things that you will hear when you sit down to dinner with the vanguard of the Intellectual Dark Web: There are fundamental biological differences between men and women. Free speech is under siege. Identity politics is a toxic ideology that is tearing American society apart. And we’re in a dangerous place if these ideas are considered “dark.”
Weiss then tells us about "I.D.W." machers like Ben Shapiro and Jordan Peterson who, despite the alleged siege upon their free speech, have enjoyed tons of mainstream attention -- see Shapiro lauded as "the cool kids' philosopher" by yet another Timeswoman, and plenty of Peterson puffery at the Washington Post. The less-well-known, like Christina Hoff Sommers, are equally awful but have yet to find that sure-fire gimmick that will launch them into the stratosphere. (Sommers did work her act in the Milo road show, but that one closed out of town).

Speaking of too-late regrets, near the end of the thing Weiss notes many of these guys actively court the yowling mobs of Alex Jones, Mike Cernovich et alia, and she even seems to dimly perceive that their contrarian shtick is essentially right-wing -- but plays it off as something they probably don't realize they're doing 'cuz it's psychomological:
One risk is what Eric Weinstein has called “audience capture.” Since stories about left-wing-outrage culture — the fact that the University of California, Berkeley, had to spend $600,000 on security for Mr. Shapiro’s speech there, say — take off with their fans, members of the Intellectual Dark Web may have a hard time resisting the urge to deliver that type of story. This probably helps explain why some people in this group talk constantly about the regressive left but far less about the threat from the right.
Sure, that's it -- the crowd liked when I beat up that hippie, so I had to find some more and beat them up too, I'm just givin' 'em what they want. Plus the Dorkwebsters mostly have anti-Trump alibis -- "There are a few people in this network who have gone without saying anything critical about Trump, a person who has assaulted truth more than anyone in human history,” says Sam Harris, in much the same way less refined but similarly duplicitous wingnuts constantly go I'm no Trump voter but [Trump position here].

The whole thing is obviously contrarian cover for bigots who have heretofore been shy about asserting their obnoxious beliefs. But I have to tell them: A dork in a Harry Potter costume is still a dork.

Monday, May 07, 2018


...about the return of Rudy Giuliani as Trump's eminence grease, and the eerie, embarrassed silence of the brethren as he goes about his goombah bullshit. (I do think they're embarrassed, but not for the reason you or I would be embarrassed if, say, Russ Feingold started acting like Nathan Detroit; rather, they're embarrassed because -- with the dumpsters flying open like coffins on Judgment Day and disgorging Rudy, Don Blankenship, incoming NRA President Ollie North, et alia -- the world is getting a good look at who they really are; in fact, maybe also because they're getting a good look at themselves.)

Wednesday, May 02, 2018


A few people have asked me about that Ross Douthat "Redistribution of Sex" column but there's not much to say. His tropes are tedious as usual. For one thing, he tries to hitch a ride on the contrarian zeitgeist by saying that the dull, middle-of-the-road types -- that is, people who found Robin Hanson's "Incels Have a Point" essay to be creepy and misogynist and creepily misogynist -- are old and tired, and that the real truth is only known by "the extremists and radicals and weirdos" -- that is, guys like Hanson.

Then Douthat pulls what he no doubt imagines is a fast one -- another enlightened weirdo, he posits, is Amia Srinivasan, whose thoughtful essay on changing attitudes toward and standards of sexual desirability he (to be polite about it) reinterprets as something about "revolutionary architects" grimly working to ensure that comes the Revolution "sex would be more justly distributed than it is today." That is, he's trying to draw a parallel between the masculinity-poisoned killer virgins and people who are sexually adventuresome -- those who believe "the greatest possible diversity in sexual desires and tastes and identities should be not only accepted but cultivated" -- just so he can say, see, you liberals want sex with fat people and cripples to be sexy because you're into "diversity" sex, well what if my revolution is I want to have sex with robots or prostitutes?  Because all you liberals (Douthat took a poll) believe that "sex work is work," maybe Douthat will dress a prostitute like Less Chunky Reese Witherspoon and do, ugh, whatever Douthat does with women -- and there's nothing you can do about it!

Douthat's upshot, as always, is to suggest we'd all be better off under a theocracy where sex is policed by the Church, while everyone else suggests we'd be better off without Douthat.

But Douthat's the least of  it. Rod Dreher:
I want to share with you the most disturbing thing I have read in a very long time. You need to know about it. 
I learned about it via the Twitter feed of a UK radical feminist. In Britain, radical feminists, including TERFs (Trans-Exclusive Radical Feminists) are taking an insane amount of abuse from transgenders and their allies. But on that issue, they’re right. This particular feminist has uncovered something shocking — beyond shocking — about how pedophiles intend to use the same strategy that worked, and is working, for LGBTs, for the sake of legitimizing pederasty.
And then he quotes at length from a document these people purport to be this pedophile group's blueprint for legal kidsex, in which they say things like "In truth, access to the media is what you need most. Without the help of liberal and progressive Hollywood, there will be no campaign." In other words, it's very obviously The Protocols of the Elders of NAMBLA -- bullshit meant to jack up people like Rod Dreher.

And oh my brothers and sisters, the updates:
UPDATE: A couple of you have written to say that this document sounds like a right-wing fake. It might well be. But for the sake of argument, how would we respond if some pro-pederasty groups and individuals adopted this proposed strategy? You can’t say, “It will never happen here.” It absolutely could. The sexualization of children and the removal of sexual inhibitions via popular culture is happening...
A few hours later:
UPDATE: Re-reading it, I doubt it’s authenticity. For me, the “tell” is how the author writes about the media. Still, the fact that even some liberal readers here are not sure that it’s real or fake tells us something about the current cultural moment, and what has become plausible...
Very like the Douthat strategy -- some of you liberals (or whatever kind of liberals hang out at Dreher's site) sorta believed this caricature I swallowed hook, line and sinker, so in a way I was onto something! But with more whining.


Kanye West is jackassing like a motherfucker -- telling the world 400 years of black slavery was a choice, then issuing the inevitable of course I didn't mean what I clearly said, how could you think that response.

As a self-promotional strategy it makes sense: West has clearly analyzed the Trump phenomenon and deduced that many Americans wish to identify with winners no matter what -- that's how they got in the habit of denying their own economic problems until it's too late. So West is looking to flatter the guys who like to think that if the slavers had come for them, they'd be too smart and strong to be taken. Just like Kanye!

Attempting to find profit for his cause from this sad case is pint-sized pundit Ben Shapiro but, in order to make it work for his readers, even the least aware of whom will have noticed by now that West is nuts, he has to assure them that he, too, finds his subject a buffoon; and, for more than one reason, this is surely the most convincing part of his essay:
It's easy to dismiss him because he's nutty. This is a fellow who tweets about antique fish tanks and fur pillows. This is the guy who calls himself Yeezus (after Jesus) and suggested that then-President George W. Bush didn't care about black people in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He isn't exactly known for his bouts of emotional stability.

And in our celebrity-driven culture, we shouldn't pay too much attention to those who haven't spent a lot of time studying policy. That's how we end up with celebrity politicians, emotion-driven policy and reality television substituting for news.
So, um, what exactly are we doing here?
With that said, Kanye West did something deeply important over the last two weeks: He opened up the debate.
Debate? Apart from the voluntary nature of the Middle Passage, I don't recall any political issues coming up at all.
Stung by the gratuitous censorship of the left, West began tweeting that Americans ought to think for themselves.
Ah, that's the propositon being debated: Can we sell our Liberals are the Real Fascists bullshit to black people? By "thinking for themselves" Shapiro means rejection of "those on the left who suggest that politics must innately follow immutable biological characteristics (i.e. black people have to be Democrats)," and... well, not much else, really:
It may just be that West, like a lot of Americans tired of being told what to think by their industry and racialists on all sides, is getting tired of being told what to do.
So: Having told us that West is a crackpot, Shapiro now tells us we should emulate his bravery. Don't let the Democrats tell you what to do! You want to play on the train tracks, or with downed power lines? Follow your bliss! BTW the Dragon Energy hats cost 49 dollars.

They're desperate to make something of it. National Review evens runs a pic of West over a Jonah Goldberg column and titles it "Vanity Fair’s Hilariously Bad Account of the ‘Red-Pilling’ of Kanye West" -- notwithstanding that West is only a minor part of Goldberg's essay (the major part is about how National Review is, too, relevant, despite the fact that conservatives are abandoning stodgy old Tory destinations like theirs for less carefully disguised wingnut garbage pits). But it's a fool's errand. Like any celebrity endorsement, it might draw a few new troops. But wait'll West finds out the Republicans won't indulge his stated goal of running for President — you’ll see the other side of the mood swing then. For, as good a fit for the Trump template of know-nothing belligerence as West may be, he's missing a credential: for the conservative base, some folks are fit for quarterbacks, and some only for mascots.

Monday, April 30, 2018


‪...about Kanye West exciting the brethren and Michelle Wolf pissing them off. As usual there's an analogy in there somewhere.

The column is packed and I'm sorry I couldn't include the RedState column by Brandon Morse, who not only declares “This Kanye, Kardashian, Trump Episode Could Be One Of The Biggest Turning Points In Our Culture," and insists "if you’re part of the elite left, you’re gripping the arms of your chair. You’re in the river on the edge of the waterfall" -- he also finds special significance in Kim Kardashian's defense of her husband: we’re all woefully aware, Kim Kardashian holds more sway in the media and the minds of many than we like to give her credit for.
News to me. Is she the inspiration for so many rich girls marrying jackasses? of the most mainstream of the mainstream just said it’s okay not to be mainstream. The woman that a good many western first worlder consider a role model, American royalty, or just a flat-out obsession gave her blessing about having right-leaning proclivities.
That’s huge, whether you think of Kim Kardashian as the modern day goddess the media has made her out to be, or you think as I do that she’s a woman who got famous by being famous for silly reasons.
That last bit is so perfect: Morse imagines Kim Kardashian letting her husband suck up to Trump is an epochal, game-changing event, notwithstanding that he also finds her silly. It sums up the rightwing idea of culture war: they have no idea why anything cultural is popular, and indeed seem to find it all ridiculous and unimportant (at least as compared to timeless pursuits such as propaganda and ratfucking) but still want to manipulate it to their advantage. This also explains why they're so bad at it.

UPDATE. There's been stiff competition for the stupidest thing written about this, but I think Jenna Ellis of the Washington Examiner is going to be hard to beat:
Michelle Wolf exposes the true, despicable agenda of the abortion industry...
In part, Wolf said on abortion , "Don’t knock it till you try it — and when you do try it, really knock it. You know, you’ve got to get that baby out of there. And yeah, sure, you can groan all you want. I know a lot of you are very anti-abortion. You know, unless it’s the one you got for your secret mistress." 
Are we really so depraved and desensitized as a culture that we are expected to laugh about “trying” abortion? As if abortion is equivalent to Saturday brunch and hey, if you didn’t like the eggs Benedict, there’s always next weekend. Have a mimosa, chill, and try abortion for fun, girls. Generally, if someone says “don’t knock it till you try it,” it’s something they enjoy and are encouraging you to try to see if you enjoy it too.
Funny how she blew right past anti-abortion men's secret mistresses and their abortions -- especially considering it has become a Republican hallmark, like flag pins and red ties -- to yell at Wolf making a joke about it. Also, I bet Ellis thinks Wolf was really "encouraging you to try" abortion the way the other outraged conservatives think she made fun of Sanders' appearance -- that is, not at all. Most of their propagandists aren't that dumb -- they're just trying to bamboozle a couple more people who are that dumb.

Friday, April 27, 2018


When I was a kid, I thought this was a Buck Owens song
because of the falsetto ba-ba-bapa-bapa-bapa-pa parts.

RedState fired a bunch of writers. Many sore wingnuts -- including former RedStater Erick Erickson --portray this as a "purge" of Trump critics, but there appears to be another factor, one that in America always matters most:
RedState writers work on contract and are paid based on the amount of traffic to their posts. 
"Those who had been under a contract with a higher per-click rate were mostly all tossed, only keeping those who were pro-Trump even if their traffic was comparable," another one of the sources said on condition of anonymity. 
"Of those who make less under their contracts, they mostly tossed those who had been openly critical of the president," the source said. "It seems to have been a cost saving measure, but the deciding factor between any two people seems to have been who liked the president and who didn't." [emphasis added]
If only these poor fellows had unionized! Erickson has invited them over to his site The Resurgent, where they will no doubt be paid in Confederate scrip. I hate to see anyone suffer so from the rapacious capitalism of our age, but I have to laugh at Erickson's huff-n-puffery about when it was all about the music, man:
When RedState started in 2004, it was about collaborating between all sides of the GOP and, after I took over, had a real grassroots focus. Since the Salem purchase of Eagle Publishing, the grassroots focus went away as did the community building aspect in favor of clickbait with analysis... 
They've really stopped driving a conversation among conservatives in the past few years as they turned to clickbait and now will really just be a clickbait site it seems.
Clickbait! LOL, The Resurgent is still mostly Angry Email Grandpa crap ("Are we governed by 535 legislators and an executive? Or by 875 unelected judges?"), and currently features no fewer than four stories about Kanye West, including one by Erickson himself ("Kanye West Thinks For Himself. Liberals Demand He Stop Doing That or Shut Up"). As I have said at length here, the rightwing web was always shit and has been devolving for a while into something even lower -- a sort of quantum shit that increasingly ditches the Great Debate MacGuffin and focuses instead on guttural prompts to stir the deepest fears and hatreds of Trumpkins. There are a few intellectual types (and their pseud equivalents) who are still putting Burkean lipstick on the pig, but Erick Erickson has always been and remains a hog-caller, and that is what animates conservatism today.

UPDATE. I just remembered that, back in his RedState days, Erickson did some purging -- or at least attempted purging -- of his own, running an anti-RINO thing called "Operation Leper" and hollering that "The GOP Establishment Must Be Purged." No doubt he'll return to his purgative roots, too, as soon as he sniffs a market opportunity in it for himself.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


Fundie wingnuts have a new HobbyLobbyhorse:
Could California Ban The Bible?
California Lawmakers Consider A Bill That Would Ban The Bible 
California Pro-Homosexual Bill Will Ban the Bible
This is, as you will have guessed, bullshit. The bill before the California lege would ban (or, rather, sharpen an existing ban on) the gay-straightening racket by specifying as illegal "any practices that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation. This includes efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex."  

It certainly wouldn't make the Holy Bible itself illegal, as fact-checkers like PolitiFact and Snopes (with the weary tone I suppose they can't avoid, the times being what they are) patiently explain -- to which the wingnut response has been to cry, as has become their habit, that fact-checking sites are liberal black magic. About the best example is at (natch) The Federalist, by Robert Gagnon, entitled (and it helps to look at Gagnon's picture and imagine him reading it out loud) "Snopes Is a Sneaky Liar About California’s Bill To Ban Christian LGBT Talk."

His opening is a masterpiece of wingnut logic and I feel I must share:
If you haven’t already lost significant respect for Snopes as an impartial fact-checker, its analysis of a bill that bans all transactions involved in stating Christian beliefs about homosexual behavior should. That bill passed 50-18 on April 19 and is being considered in the state senate. Snopes’ insistence that California Assembly Bill 2943 would not result in the Bible being banned in California is akin to Snopes calling “demonstrably and clearly false” the claim that Joseph Stalin killed everyone around him.
I know, guys, but stay with it:
True, Stalin did not kill “all” around him. Indeed, so far as we know he never personally killed anyone. But he did have a great many people killed (estimates indicate that he was responsible for the deaths of 20 to 25 million people), sent many others to the Gulag, and generally terrorized both his own country and Eastern Europe for decades.
Sure, it is virtually impossible that California will immediately attempt to ban the sale of the Bible itself. Not even the hard Left in California has that kind of chutzpah. But citations of Bible verses in the context of declaring homosexual practice and transgenderism to be morally debased could indeed get one into serious trouble with the law if it comes in the context of selling or advertising a product or service. Here are the problems with Snopes’s case.
So it's "virtually impossible" (that is to say, impossible) that the law would lead to any Bible-banning, but in Gagnon's view that's just nit-picking -- like saying Stalin didn't kill everybody which is just what you liberals would say because you love Stalin. In reality, something close enough to it would happen, says Gagnon -- "you would be violating the law if you advertise that Christ can empower people not to engage in homosexual practice... or if you offer to engage or actually engage in efforts to persuade people of Christ’s power to transform in this area..." I guess Gagnon wants to give the impression that, should nice Mr. Christian innocently say "God bless you" when a sodomite sneezed, the Liberal Fascist Storm-Troopers would take it as conversion therapy and do a Cardinal Mindszenty on his head.

I think the brethren should switch tactics and instead insist that, if the law passes, showings of A Different Story will be considered a hate crime. At least that would have the happy side effect of reviving interest in the career of Meg Foster.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018


This essay is short by Kevin Williamson standards, but let me boil it down still further for those of you who wish to limit their contact (and I'll keep it short because I'm sick of writing about this asshole):

Williamson, famously fired by The Atlantic for telling its editor he did indeed believe, as he had previously averred, that women who have abortions should be executed, later got space in the Wall Street Journal to declare The Atlantic and everyone else who got mad at him a "mob" and to suggest this his abortion prescription was just rhetorical shtick, though he coyly refrained from saying what his real prescription was.

Ed Kilgore of New York magazine asked Williamson what his real prescription was, and Williamson responded with evasions and, when Kilgore insisted on an answer, insults.

Today at The Weekly Standard, Williamson reveals that he offered New York a full column (free!) in which he would finally give The Full Monty on how he would really deal with abortion sluts, and (he claims) New York's editor told him a few sentences was "as much on the subject of your views on this matter as we want to publish." Williamson denounces New York, calls Kilgore more names, sputters about the "prevention of discourse," etc. But he still doesn’t reveal his view on abortion and execution.

I suppose this crybaby is even now stalking more liberal magazines, demanding they publish his work at length lest he insult them in the rightwing press, then running to the rightwing press to insult them. I suggest he try the Village Voice. There is precedent, after all, and I bet my editor will love his rates.

Monday, April 23, 2018


...about the Starbucks bias incident, and the training the company ordered afterward -- which offended conservatives waaaay more than the bias incident.

Among the outtakes I wished I had room for was this bit from Jonah Goldberg's America's-not-that-racist essay:
In 1958, 44 percent of white Americans said they’d move if a black family moved in next door. Forty years later, that number had dropped to 1 percent… When the Civil Rights Act was passed in 1964, only 18 percent of white Americans said they had a black friend. By 1998, that number was 86 percent.
If you’re wondering why Goldberg picked 1998, twenty years ago, as his ebony 'n' ivory golden dawn (oddly, during the Clinton Administration), it may just be that this Brookings study was easy to find, but there may be more than one reason — for instance, maybe 86 percent of white Americans had a black friend in 1998, but a 2014 PPRI poll showed it was down to 75 percent. Also, the blacks-next-door number in 2017, according to the World Values Survey, was not 1 percent, but 6 percent. (In fact Goldberg actually cites the 6 percent figure later in his essay. Well, when you get really big in his world, you don’t need editors.)

Goldberg's on a tear lately -- his next column is about how people who pretend to be transgressive and whatnot aren’t the real rebels; “a real rebel talks out loud in an Ivy League classroom about how Jesus Christ is his or her personal savior.” If you saw the scene in Where Angels Go Troubles Follows where Rosalind Russell talked down the bikers, you pretty much got the gist.

Thursday, April 19, 2018


How far has National Review come since its days as an explicitly segregationist magazine? Well, they have no fewer than three columns on Starbucks' admirable decision to hold a day of diversity training in response to a well-publicized racist incident in one of its stores. Want to guess how they feel about it? Here's David French:
There is near-universal consensus that the Starbucks employee’s actions were racially motivated. Starbucks apparently agrees, and given that the company knows more about its employees than I do, I’m not going to question its conclusion.
Sounds pretty sulky, doesn't he? Can't blame him -- everyone's bought into this racism-exists madness, even the big corporation -- and they're supposed to be on his side! French is pissed that Starbucks is "forcing more than 175,000 employees to undergo 'racial bias' training" (yeah, I bet those baristas are real upset they have to sit on their ass and get trained for a day) but especially that their training will address "so-called unconscious bias," which French calls "Orwellian junk science." Imagine -- thinking people might be prejudiced without even knowing it! Next you'll be telling him about all that stuff the eggheads say we do without knowing about it, like Freudian shits.
Starbucks is a private company and as such it has a right to make this mistake. It can shutter its stores for a day and re-educate its employees. But to the extent it’s teaching them about unconscious bias, it’s teaching nonsense, and when it comes to the fraught issue of American race relations, nonsense always inflicts a measure of harm.
French doesn't explain, but from his previous writings I guess he means if you try to make people less racist, they just naturally get more bigoted and vote for Trump, so you see it's really your fault for hassling them, you Orwellian junk scientists.

Let's see what NR's Kyle Smith has to say:
At a glance, what happened at that Philadelphia coffee shop last Thursday looks like racism. But there’s little context. Does the manager also routinely call the police on white people who loiter in the shop? If a white manager called the police on two white guys hanging around a coffee shop, it wouldn’t make the news, much less become a national obsession.
This guys are really suspicious about the incident that everyone involved agrees happened. Maybe Starbucks and the liberals are in cahoots to make people think racism exists!
The incident is making people unhinged. When the “racism” circuits in our brain get activated, we stop thinking clearly. We go out looking for someone to chastise, and one low-level staffer isn’t enough. We want a larger target suited to the strength of the frenzy. It affects our judgment the way being drunk does. This is your brain. This is your brain on race.
And you sheeple thought racism was bad! Nothing's as bad as anti-racism, except maybe drinking.

Now, Jim Geraghty:
I suspect you can trace the country’s unexpected path to this mindset on racial controversies by following the twists and turns in the career of Al Sharpton.
Shorter version: This Starbucks thing reminds me of some famous black guy I don't like.

Not content with this trifecta, National Review has chosen also to run this:
Enoch Powell’s Immigration Speech, 50 Years Later
I shit you not -- they do indeed mean the "Rivers of Blood" speech, which I believe was last celebrated in NR's pages by John Derbyshire, not long thereafter defenestrated for Making It Too Obvious. If you're guessing this new review is less obvious but highly sympathetic, collect your prize at the door. There are some mealy-mouthed qualifiers, but nothing the typical NR reader can't see through -- when author Douglas Murray says "some portions of [the speech] cannot but induce an intake of breath and a considerable wince or gulp" -- referring to the more overtly ooga-booga passages about "pickaninnies" and so forth -- you know conservatives for whom "politically incorrect" is the highest possible accolade will take it as a recommendation (and so, I assume, does Murray). And anyway, says Murray, none of these PC drags talk about the good parts -- why, "some of the questions [Powell] addressed are questions that understandably gnaw away at us still" -- f'rinstance:
...some of the issues he raised — however well or poorly — remain so pregnant. 
As I wrote in my latest book, imagine you had been a speechwriter for Enoch Powell in 1968, or an adviser or friend. And imagine if you had said to him then, “I have an idea, Enoch. Why not use your speech to say that if immigration into the U.K. goes on at these rates, then in 2011 the official census will reveal that people who identify as ‘white British’ will be a minority in their capital city of London.” Had this been said, Powell would most likely have dismissed the person as an inflammatory madman. Yet that was indeed one of the things that the 2011 census showed. And the news came and went as though it was just another detail on just another day.
London's full of sooties and wogs; the man was a prophet! Ahem, I mean "questions remain."

Welp, looks like National Review's capitulation to Trumpism and its corollary -- that conservatives can be elected with zero support from black people, so why even bother -- is complete. But then, they never really had that far to go.