Thursday, January 03, 2008

Zombie Lies, Conventional Wisdom and Whiners

From the Department of If Youda Ast Me, I Coulda Tolja.

Arianna Huffington: I Am Conventional Wisdom: An Unstoppable Zombie Wreaks Havoc On America - Politics on The Huffington Post:
"In this real-life horror, the conventional wisdom about the war in Iraq came back from the dead, reasserting the absurd notion that the more wrong you were about Iraq, the more credibility your opinion has about anything having to do with terrorism, the Middle East, Islam, or national security.

Accordingly, conventional wisdom has it that the main 'beneficiaries' of the turmoil in Pakistan are Rudy Giuliani, who has yet to utter a critical word about the Bush strategy in the Middle East, and Hillary Clinton, the Democratic candidate who took the longest to separate herself from that strategy.

You might think that the one positive thing to come out of this tragedy would be the opportunity it gives us to reassess not only our strategy in the Middle East, but the conventional wisdom that gave rise to this strategy and continues to sustain it.

But, sadly, you would be wrong. Because the conventional wisdom is composed largely of what Atrios calls 'zombie lies.' They cannot be stopped. For a moment or two, it may seem like you've killed them, but back they come over the horizon. Again and again and again."
Such as the yearly trope of the "war on Christmas" by Godless Atheists (and of course blacks with their Kwanzaa and Jews with their Hanukkah). God forbid we should note with a cheery "happy holidays" that few indeed of us are actually at work, and that whatever one's religion or the lack, one ought to be happy, considering how much good food and family there is about to happen. (Or for some of us, how few of our family show up!)

The Zombie Liars and Conventional Wisdomeers are particularly evident in response to all things Ron Paul, who I'm following primarily as an anomalous phenomenon pointing to a brave new informed consensus reality. It's amusing to see their heads explode as Paul starts to look good for making serious primary gains - or perhaps even taking Iowa.

Atrios's deft framing of the obvious oversupply of Big, Obvious Lies as "zombie lies" and watching the inept, screaming frustration of those invested in dismissing Ron Paul share one important factor.

Unlike in the days of my youth, when it was possible to control the media so closely and pervasively that it was impossible to really notice, the lies of commission and omission by various authorities and authoritarians have become unavoidably conspicuous.

It's not that the zombie lie technique is new. It's that the stench is newly conspicuous.

This new informational commons advantages truth-tellers over liars, for lies only work if you can't easily fact check. Well, anyone with computer access can fact check the hell out of anyone these days, and that's why the "conventional wisdom" - one part lie, two parts guess, three parts sheer ignorant bliss - seems suddenly so foolish. It always was, of course. But it took a lot of heavy lifting to prove it.

Not so much these days. (Atrios)

Why We Say "Fuck" A Lot

Jane has more on the latest nonsense from the Post. The problem really is that no matter how many times we try to kill right wing horseshit (or as Media Matters delicately calls it, "conservative misinformation") it keeps coming back to haunt us. It infects the media bloodstream. We politely ask for corrections. They don't happen. We start screaming for corrections. They still don't happen. Eventually some half-assed weaselly blame-the-uncivil-critics statement is released. We scream louder. And, then, the horeshit pops up again on CNN.
I think you meant to say "whoreshit," big guy...

Even when you wish to agree with the conventional wisdom, it's difficult to pretend - despite all the yammering to that effect - that the conventional wisdom is anything other than the minority wishful thinking of culturally privileged spoiled brats.

It's whining - and if there's anything us "Ahumurikins" hate even more than "socialism",
it's whining.

Yesterday in Des Moines, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee hosted an event thanking “roughly 700 bloggers who, he said, were responsible for keeping his campaign alive.”

Calling them his “secret weapon,” Huckabee urged the bloggers to “clog” up the wireless system in Des Moines so that reporters couldn’t file any more “bad” stories about him. He added that by blocking the free press from doing their jobs, bloggers were “doing the Lord’s work”:

Actually, that's even worse. That's Preemptive Whining. "The bad old media is going to say bad things about me. WHO will rid me of this troublesome media?*"

I am not suggesting, of course, that all seven hundred of the blogger supporters Huckabee credits for keeping his campaign afloat are such daft and depraved sorts. Nope. I merely point out that in expecting them to be willing to commit such an unethical, immoral and frankly Un-American act, he shows that HE believes that of them - and also that his ideas aren't up to being seriously examined by the "unwashed and unconverted."

Since he isn't sure about "owning" the MSM, he's trying to create a pocket MSM, or possibly a perfectly loyal and uncritical counterpart to Ron Paul's volunteer hordes.

My unconventional wisdom says that you don't want to draw to an inside straight when there's a high pair showing. That's the hand that Huck seems to be playing - and moreover, in pulling a stunt that seems to be ripped from the Libretto of The Music Man, we start to grasp on a national basis how he earned his nickname: "The Huckster."

Illustration: End Conservative Whining by webcarve Get this custom shirt at Zazzle

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