Occasional blogging, mostly of the long-form variety.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Rorschach Blots and Pirates

(Stare into the blot. Do you see – Bloody Courage?)

It's hard to keep up with the right-wing grumble du jour on the pirate incident. We've covered it at BH, Jill at Brilliant at Breakfast offers "Obama scores an early military victory -- and the wingnuts are going crazy" and Sadly, No also has a good post. Meanwhile, if you're not reading Roy Edroso, you really should. All followers of wingnuttia should at least read his weekly roundups for The Village Voice. From this week's installment:

To prove their superior Republican toughness, some rightbloggers offered their own fantasy-camp ideas of how to handle piracy. Jules Crittenden suggested a scorched water policy, destroying all boats on or off Somalia's coast. Later Crittenden admitted this would take innocent lives, and so proposed a more targeted Plan B which involved "decoy ships to ambush and kill pirates in the act," gibbets, and imaginative disposal of pirate bodies ("Drop from altitude into the middle of suspect villages and piracy bases"). Still later he suggested "a kind of biblical terminology. Fire and brimstone, wailing of women and children, that kind of thing."

Any readers who found his fantasies "a little too 18th century," and "consider all this violence abhorrent," Crittenden assumed would also believe that "the pirates are simply victims of dysfunctional society themselves." So if you don't see the utility of dropping pirate bodies on African villages -- which would make a totally awesome video game -- you are a caricature of a bleeding-heart liberal; you are, in the ancient warblogger usage, objectively pro-pirates! And so is Obama, whose pirate policy Crittenden said was all about "human rights lawyers and an excess of concern for the well-being of the larger pirate community." So what if it was effective? It wasn't badass like what Crittenden acted out in his bathtub.

I commented over at Jill's post that I think for wingnuts, the only purpose the news serves at this point is as Rorschach blots for diagnosing the flavor and extent of their insanity. And that was before I was laughing at the military brilliance and ferocious courage of dropping bloody pirate bodies from "altitude." Roy basically sums up the entire right-wing blogosphere:

Get the story straight, comrade: rightbloggers would rather display absurdly reflexive hatred of the President than give any impression that they would ever approve of something he did. We're not sure how that's supposed to work on voters who aren't already rightwing lunatics, but maybe it's not meant for them; maybe it's some sort of test of loyalty and message discipline. If so, it was indeed a great success. Now all they have to do convince normal people to pay attention to them.

To bring us full circle to Buck's post (the first link), Rush Limbaugh is attacking his fellow conservative hack Jonah Goldberg for daring... to compliment the President of the United States. Even a rare display of class must be punished, lest the children get the wrong idea or the dittoheads have a thought not fueled by constipated, misplaced rage. These people deserve to be mocked, but this long-standing hyper-partisanship and sheer insanity from the GOP has not been a good thing for America and won't be in the future. Still, if these rabid scallywags would at least stick to sinking their own party and not the entire country, we'd all be better off.

(Cross-posted at Blue Herald)

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