Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Hilarious Shit Andrew Sullivan Says, Ctd.


In which Mr. Sullivan surveys the wreckage that 40 years of unhinged, unbridled, Conservative slander and hate has caused, tosses $5 on the dresser, mumbles "Hope we're all cool now", and heads back out to his bright future as the emcee of the never-ending Both Sides Do It Beltway dance party:
For a conservative should not be implacably hostile to liberalism (let alone demonize it), but should be alert to its insights, and deeply aware of the need to change laws and government in response to unstoppable change in human society. Equally, a liberal can learn a lot from conservatism’s doubts about utopia, from the conservative concern with history, tradition and the centrality of culture in making human beings, and from conservatism’s love and enjoyment of the world as-it-is, even as it challenges the statesman or woman to nudge it toward the future...   
-- Andrew Sullivan, 11/13/13
After which follows a typically Sullivanesque nine-bong-paean to how awesomely wonderful his Imaginary Pineapple Ice Cream Conservatism would be if it weren't all clogged up with, y'know, actual Shitty, Ignorant, Racist, Real-As-A-Heart-Attack Conservatives.


gratuitous said...

Yanno, I can't count the number of times I've completely forgotten history, tradition, culture, and how much conservatives love the world as-it-*what the fuck*?!

Conservatives HATE the world as it is. They'd sooner gouge out their eyes than accept the changes happening around them. No, they want the world as-it-never-was, some chimerical past where they were the undisputed top dogs, and all those other people knew their place and if they didn't like it, they at least knew damned well not to make a stink about it.

I don't think nine bongs is quite enough to alter reality sufficiently to see it through Andrew Sullivan's eyes.

dinthebeast said...

"Concern with history"? As in "concern that someone may find out about it"?

-Doug in Oakland

Batocchio said...

All the positive elements that conservatives/libertarians try to claim as unique to their movements already exist in liberalism. The rest aren't positive.

It's not as if liberals don't stop to consider whether a change will be positive or not, and to what degree, and with what effectiveness and efficiency, and what the trade-offs are, etc. That process of evaluation, the drive for balancing concerns and power, the need to think-things-through are central to liberalism (just look at the best satirical pieces poking fun at it). Skepticism is valuable, but paralysis born of fear, idiocy, insanity, or greed is not. The whole conservative 'standing athwart history yelling stop!' bit was in defense of segregation. Both Ronald Reagan (Socialized Medicine!) and Friedrich Hayek (Road to Serfdom!) lived to see their slippery slope pronouncements of doom proven utterly wrong. And yet conservatives will continue to quote them as if nothing ever happened and scream that the sky is falling. They acknowledge neither their defeats nor their victories, and always press belligerently for more. It'd be great if Sullivan could actually "teach" us anything, but instead he's pulling a Douthat and whining about how vital conservatives are to the system and how we're big meanies if we don't grant them unearned respect and privilege. The proposition is that conservatives have valuable ideas to offer? Show, don't tell, buddy.

Sullivan, Frum and the lot have their moments, but they're most useful when they're telling tales of their movement and what was and is said behind closed doors. Rare exceptions exist, but generally when it comes to actual policy ideas, they possess "merit" only when graded on a curve. (The corporate media is happy to comply, to manufacture some "reasonable" conservatives and prove their open-mindedness.) David Frum is Canadian and knows the benefits of national health care, yet he's fought against health care reform in the U.S. and will insist on ideologically conservative measures. On the merits, his best ideas are worse than the dumbest ideas of the Congressional Progressive Caucus (and worse than those of establishment Democrats most of the time, too). Plus, the Frum and Sullivan block doesn't possess any actual meaningful power in the Republican Party, so it's not as if sucking up to them serves any practical political purpose.

Anonymous said...

Good morning, Mr. Glass.

Maybe, in his "let's get back to True Conservatism" thing, he's like Martin Luther...minus the part where anybody actually wanted to listen to Martin Luther.

Enjoy your day.

---Kevin Holsinger

bowtiejack said...

I got your concern with history right here.
I seem to recall that in the late Roman Empire (around 400 A.D. or something like that) everything between the Rhine and Mesopotamia (i.e everything worth having) was owned by 600 Roman families who were largely exempt from taxation.
That certainly seems to be the model for modern conservatism.
By the way, how'd that turn out for the Romans?