Wednesday, September 17, 2003

ABOUT LAST POST AND ABOUT LAST NIGHT. As recently observered here, there is a lot of silliness on both sides of the political divide. I do get more annoyed at the stuff on the Right because, well, that's not my side. And I get very annoyed when conservative commentators are forever challenging liberals to say something bad about ANSWER or Al Sharpton or even the more obviously bad actors like the old Politburo. For one thing, that sort of thing is just hectoring -- instead of Say You Love Satan, it's Say You Hate Stalin, and who needs it?

For another, noting these outrages are what NRO and Instapundit and a zillion other, similar outfits are for. I know speech codes are bad. You know speech codes are bad. But rather than put my shoulder to that already well-advanced wheel, I prefer to talk about Daniel Pipes and the other loons who want to regulate the content of college cirricula they suspect of anti-Americanism. Political Correctness was a cover subject in Time years ago. So sue me if I choose to join the ten or twelve guys on Pipes' case instead.

You know who my favorite web conservative is right about now? Terry Teachout. God knows he's pissed me off in the past, and will again I'm sure, but his About Last Night weblog gives me great pleasure. Sure, he's from the Right. But he's a very astute cultural observer, he knows his subjects, and he writes well.

Recently he did a long bit on Shostakovich and one of his interpreters. There's a lot in the piece about the horrors of the old USSR. That's a popular bloody shirt in some circles, and in lesser hands often causes my eyes to glaze over. But it's absolutely appropriate to Teachout's point, and he writes feelingly about it. I have to say, he ain't wrong.

It's always good to see someone pushing words together toward a greater purpose than the old nyah-nyah. Hell, I might try to do a little more of it myself.

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