Taking note of the Duck Dynasty fracas, Mark Steyn wrote what we expected – a witty and devastating critique of a culture being bound hand and foot by liberal fascist control freaks. To illustrate his point, Mr. Steyn noted a couple of old jokes from ancient times (ie, the 1970’s):
…Here are two jokes one can no longer tell on American television. But you can still find them in the archives, out on the edge of town, in Sub-Basement Level 12 of the ever-expanding Smithsonian Mausoleum of the Unsayable. First, Bob Hope, touring the world in the year or so after the passage of the 1975 Consenting Adult Sex Bill:
“I’ve just flown in from California, where they’ve made homosexuality legal. I thought I’d get out before they make it compulsory.”
For Hope, this was an oddly profound gag, discerning even at the dawn of the Age of Tolerance that there was something inherently coercive about the enterprise. Soon it would be insufficient merely to be “tolerant” — warily accepting, blithely indifferent, mildly amused, tepidly supportive, according to taste. The forces of “tolerance” would become intolerant of anything less than full-blown celebratory approval.
Second joke from the archives: Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra kept this one in the act for a quarter-century. On stage, Dino used to have a bit of business where he’d refill his tumbler and ask Frank, “How do you make a fruit cordial?” And Sinatra would respond, “I dunno. How do you make a fruit cordial?” And Dean would say, “Be nice to him.”…
This caused the editor of NRO – Jason Steorts – to first make a tut-tutting criticism of Mr. Steyn for not understanding that being a meany is bad and then, when massive criticism was directed at Mr. Steorts, he just doubled down:
The point is basic courtesy, Mark. It’s that you could mount your opposing argument without insulting people. Sure, you have the right to insult people, but I can’t sympathize much with someone who exercises that right just to prove it exists, which seems to have been part of your rhetorical strategy. What I would like to de-normalize is boorishness, whatever its content…
And this, in turn, prompted a small comment from me:
No, Mr. Steyn cannot mount an argument against the left without insulting them. To disagree with them is, in their view, to be insulting. We’re not dealing with rational people, here. We’re dealing with people who are, in the largest sense of the word, insane. For crying out loud, they really think that its ok to kill a baby! When you’re dealing with that sort of irrationality, trying to keep it polite is the least of your concerns. Our job, as sane people, is to drive these people entirely out of power. We won’t do that if we try to pretend that lunacy has a proper place in the debate.
I don’t know Mr. Steort from Adam – until just yesterday, hadn’t the foggiest clue who NRO’s editor was, or that they even had one. But the fact that someone like Mr. Steort is editing the on-line descendent of the magazine William F. Buckley founded to “stand athwart history yelling, ‘stop!” speaks volumes about how low we’ve fallen. Per the comment at Red State, that has now been changed to, “Standing Athwart History, Yelling Okay Go Right Ahead (We Don’t Want to Offend Anyone)”. Red State also noted that Mr. Steort is in favor of gay marriage, but that isn’t as important as the discovery, by me, that in reading Mr. Steort’s article in favor of gay marriage, I also discovered that he’s in favor of insanity, as well. To quote:
…Romantic attraction is a unique type of desire in which a person is wanted in his or her unity and totality, and sexual activity is the unique expression and bodily dimension of such desire. The desire is thus unique in both its “inner” (“subjective,” “mental”) and its “outer” (“objective,” “bodily”) dimensions, and its fulfillment is intrinsically good…
If this is conservatism, then we’re in trouble. Its basically a statement that “if it feels good, do it”…and its good. As G. K. Chesterton noted, the purpose of Progressives is to go on making mistakes, and the purpose of Conservatives is to go on preventing the mistakes from being corrected. A Progressive comes up with a completely stupid and insane idea and immediately puts it in to effect – when it all falls apart and destroys everything in its path, here comes the Conservative to say, “we can’t change it; it is part of the sacred inheritance of the past!”. Mr. Steort exemplifies this. I really can’t say this is a matter of stupidity, however; Mr. Steort is clearly not a dumb man. But he just as clearly doesn’t want to offend against the liberal world view. That would be bad. It would get liberals mad and they’d say nasty things about you. And, so, I’ll put it down as cowardice. Much easier to write pretend-conservative pieces where you essentially concede the liberal argument while making small asides which claim you still respect and honor that old time religion.
As I noted in my small comment, liberals are essentially insane. Not in the clinical sense where we could diagnose and treat them, but in the fact that what they propose flies in the face of facts and logic. That what they propose, if really and fully implemented, would utterly destroy human life on earth. People who think that babies can be killed, that tax increases cause prosperity, that crony-capitalism is a good idea, that government employees are altruistic, that a small elite can better decide things than people on their own; that a hack, Chicago politician is a new messiah – these are not rational views to hold. Added to their irrationality and completing it is a mercilessness which knows no bounds. You can rely on it that no matter how nice and polite we are, the left will still seek to destroy anyone who dares to dissent. This is not a call for us to start being mean and merciless – but for pity’s sake, don’t just sit there and be a punching bag. Hit back. And keep on hitting because until we completely remove the left from all ability to effect policy in this nation, we will not be able to reform and save it.