Friday, October 31, 2008

I was out for part of Friday and I still hope to post my top reasons against an Obama presidency this weekend (cross my fingers). But, I just quickly wanted to mention the rogues gallery of Obama supporters who stand to be affirmed and exultant if Obama wins.

Oh, I'm not talking about those simply philosophically blinkered liberals such as the Hollywood liberals, or certainly not the decent Democrats who populate the streets. What I'm talking about are the loud and abusive jerks.

1) One most notable example would be Bill Maher, he of HBO's (which I don't have and don't want) Real Time with Bill Maher. Real?...talk about irony. Maher recently reduced his movie, "Religulous," which scorns and mocks religious people, as he reliably does personally. Listen: I have read the most thoughtful atheist that literature has and has had to offer. Bill Maher isn't one of them. He isn't even in the same ballpark. He's a clever though sometimes bawdy (why shouldn't he be?)comedian. But, he is neither especially thoughtful nor minimally gracious. I have to forgive him because he doesn't know any better. But on the face of it, he's just a Jerk (with a capital "J," obviously)

2) On the other hand, there's Christopher Hitchens, a particularly interesting fellow. Hitchens is interesting as an evolving liberal who began making a face beyond his writing in the 90's by calling Bill Clinton out for his posturing and deception. He also cut a clean break from the breathless left with his defense of the war in Iraq, again disdaining and confounding the knee-jerk left wing. Of late, Hitchens has made a mark with his publication of his book, "god is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything," and traveling to collaborate with other atheists and debate theists. It becomes clear that his animus against Muslim extremists is only the most urgent end of his hatred for all religion, which he expresses brashly, usually with a baleful face.

Contrary to Bill Maher, Hitchens is very educated and articulate. And again, you can only pity the man who spurns God out of utter ignorance of Him. But that ignorance is probably not unrelated to his arrogance and scornfulness. His ungraciousness is expressed with an infinitely more able tongue than is Maher's. But, it is so thorough that he has belittled and morally reproved the likes of Billy Graham, Mother Theresa, and C.S. Lewis. When Jerry Falwell passed away, he appeared on television to scorn "the charlatan" and say he didn't care about offense to the family, notably saying, "It's a shame there is no Hell for him to go to." Hitchens'criticism are particularly remarkable to those familiar with atheist thinkers in that the typical angle of his criticism is moral condemnation, where most thinkers have to struggle with justifying the reality of moral imperatives.

Where did morality come from Mr. Hitchens? When asked, he replies, "It evolved." The British atheist and evolution apologist, Richard Dawkins exulted that with evolution "it is now possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist." Personally, I don't think the evolution account is very compelling in light of the evidence and more so the lack of it, unless you have a priori ruled a creator out. Dawkins, Hitchens, and many other secularists have in order to account for life in all its complexity. But, Hitchens has taken morality along as a stowaway on the "evolution" ship. It really strains credulity let alone obligation. But it sure gives Hitchens' rhetoric a lot broader license.

3) Speaking of Dawkins, for a celebrated Oxford Professor and author, it is disappointing to see that Dawkins' typical resort in the face of anyone who questions evolution or atheism is the sophomoric tack of questioning their character or intelligence.

4) In case you flip around on cable television, MSNBC is the home for solid liberalism and Obama fervor. Most of them are irritating but sincere. But, there's one prime time host who is such a screeching and distorting critic of all things conservative and Republican that it's difficult to believe he's serious. Keith Olberman is a former ESPN sports reporter and a clever one. As I say, I liked him better when he was reporting the games. But, as he is on his program, "Countdown," "jerk" is an exceptionally polite word for him.

5) Arianna Huffington is a former Republican who first invaded public life as the fashion plate wife of (now estranded) Republican Senate candidate Michael Huffington. She has now found a prominent home on the Internet as the publisher of The Huffington Post, a blogging depot for wide-eyed liberals. She's really harmless, But, her naive condecension to demonstrably more intellectually equipped antagonists is annoying.

6) Frank Rich is the almost definitionally shrill editorial writer for The New York Times. But, it's The New York Times. What do you expect? At least Maureen Dowd does it with a touch higher diction and a Mona Lisa-like half smile.

7) He's surely close, but he may not even be the most liberal US Senator. But more liberal ones, even Ted Kennedy, don't stoop to Dick Durbin's cheap means of attack, like comparing conservatives to Nazis and such. He's the senior Senator from Illinois, where Barack Obama is the junior. Harry Reid is just not as bad (good?" Reid is the Senate Majority leader.

8) Speaking of injudicious rhetoric, how about the former Democratic presidential candidate and now Chairman of the Democratic National Committee who among other smears famousl said, "Unlike Republicans, we don't think children should go to bed hungry at night." Durbin blew up his presidential campaign with an explosion of unrestrained ardor. Have you noticed that the headf of the DNC is totally out of the current picture? Not even the unprecedentedly liberal presidential nominee Barack Obama wants to be identified with him.
These unpleasant people are the ones who figure to parade across television screens with arms and voices lifted if Obama is elected president. Does not even that make someone think twice?

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

You can add Chris Buckley, Ken Adelman and Larry Eagleberger to your wall of shame

Larry said...

Anonymous:

I'm guessing you mean Colin Powell. I r5ead Larry Eagleburger and thought, "There's no possible way." I'm not saying that Colin Powell is not a dutiful and atriotic man. I think he is. But, Larry Eagleburger is a little more lucid than to fall into something like that, especially when it comes to national security.

Christopher Buckley. No wonder he writes comic novels instead of political philosophy. I'm thinking he could have spared National Review and his father's memory a lot of trouble if he'd just stolen away and privately defecated on William F. Buckley's grave. Holy cow, WFB passed within the3 past year. If he weren't gone already, he would be now.

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