Sunday, December 12, 2004

Our Dutch Uncle Republicans

Two themes conservative columnists seem to love are explaining to their readers what liberals think and telling liberals how we ought to conduct ourselves. The first is the raison d'etre of Ann Coulter, who has manufactured a career out of ginned up straw-man liberal arguments. Fortunately for Ann, it has not occurred to her legion of readers that if they really wanted to know what liberals think they could read the writings of liberals. That tells you a lot about Ann's readers.

The other theme, telling us what we ought to do, has always struck me as arrogant, patronizing and more than a little disingenuous. Does anybody really believe that Jonah Goldberg and George F. Will have the best interests of the Democratic Party or American liberalism in mind when they tell us that we ought to take up the standard of Peter Beinart and essentially adopt the George Bush world view of the terrorist threat? Which brings up another question; in his article Beinart says the Democrats must purge themselves of the likes of Michael Moore and MoveOn, the softies that he feels keep us from being taken seriously on the issue of national security. I'm not of the mind that anybody ought to be kicked out of the party, though some clearly ought to be marginalized. Do you suppose though that Beinart will take the time to reflect that opposition to his ideas has been widespread across the Democratic Party while they have been embraced by Republicans? Perhaps he ought to consider that if might be easier to just join a party that he agrees with than to convert a party he is out of step with.

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