New York Times’ Ross Douthat, socket-orbed neckbeard of penetrance, will talk the logic right out of you. If, mind you, you let him.
So why let him? Don’t do it. He makes no sense. Like dogs don’t make dinner. Like mosquitoes don’t make friends. Like don’t never gonna happen. Not likely, as if. You are incorrect, sir. Take your coat? Fine, I throw it upon the fire.
In Ross’ eyes, and I’m seeing cannon balls at the bottom of abandoned smokestacks, there gapes a wind-blown void between the post-Sandy Hook political sides. The tower of Wayne LaPierre, weapons-warlock, stands to one side, and the monument of Michael Bloomberg, mayorship-connoisseur, looms upon the other.
Why is there no logic to be found between them?
Unfortunately for our country, the Bloomberg versus LaPierre contrast is basically all of American politics today. Our society is divided between an ascendant center-left that’s far too confident in its own rigor and righteousness and a conservatism that’s marched into an ideological cul-de-sac and is currently battering its head against the wall.
LaPierre would have us purchase hundreds of thousands of guns to weaponize our schools. Strangely, neither he nor his armament industry clients will pay for the massive program because, you know, billions in profit. They won’t even foot the bill for the students’ emergency room visits or funerals, sadly. Here we have Ross’ cul-de-sac, hip-high in blood and money.
Conversely, Bloomberg is mayor of a town where there are over a thousand shootings a year. He’s calling for a fresh dollop of gun control. That’s a rather unpleasant tone you’ve taken with America, Mayor. O Where Has Reason Gone? There the stacks go, filling with brine. S-l-o-w-l-y.
On issue after issue, debate after debate, there is a near-unified establishment view of what the government should do, and then a furious right-wing reaction to this consensus that offers no real policy alternative at all.
You think this is funny? Douthat seeing both sides of a single side? Why can’t a titmouse shake hands with a rattlesnake? Have you two even talked? Sincerely: Your friend, Ross. For me, though, it’s the following that rates the money quote. Watch him take us to the political shed:
The establishment view is interventionist, corporatist and culturally liberal. It thinks that issues like health care and climate change and immigration are best worked out through comprehensive bills drawn up by enlightened officials working hand in glove with business interests.
God no! Faced with problems, smart people look for a consensus and legislate. Call the cops, it’s government! Out to do things! Ahem:
“Whereas it is in the national security interests of the United States to restore international peace and security to the Persian Gulf region: Now, therefore, be it Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States…”
The Iraq War resolution. A comprehensive bill legislated by liberal interventionists after building a consensus. (Oops — let us not forget the unfunny truth, the votes of our current Secretary of State, the next Secretary of State, etc. . .). The same goes for all of Ronald Reagan’s glorious tax cuts, and the Voting Rights Act, and whatever ancillary hell the government raises. That’s a pretty big bone to pick, with Federalism. This is not exactly a sober opinion, Moonflower. But then, well . .
As for a conservatism with a serious program, and a real understanding of the challenges facing America today — well, hopefully it will surface by the 2016 presidential campaign. Till then, it’s the hubris of Bloomberg versus the humbug of LaPierre. Merry Christmas, America.
In other words, our Ross: I don’t consider your side. Well, then just say so.