Thursday, March 26, 2009

Political Orcs

Who does the left see as the biggest threat to their quest to keep their grip on government power and turn us into Sweden? The key to answering the question is to see at whom they've been aiming their fire and who is the target of their most despicable attacks. For a while it was Rush Limbaugh. Now it's Sarah Palin:

The people who are doing this to Governor Palin are shameless, unprincipled Machiavellian Leninists who are determined to destroy anyone who stands in their way. They don't care about the Constitution, they don't care about truth, they don't care about law, they care only about acquiring and keeping power. Here's what Lenin himself said in a speech in 1920:

"We repudiate all morality that proceeds from supernatural ideas that are outside class [socio-economic class] conceptions. Morality is entirely subordinate to the interests of class war. Everything is moral that is necessary for the annihilation of the old exploiting social order and for uniting the proletariat."

The modern left and its tool the Democrat party have adopted Lenin's political pragmatism. For them whatever works is right. If it helps to neutralize a political threat to their power by hounding a good woman and her family with lawsuits, if it means ridiculing her because her daughter doesn't live by the values the mother does, if it means reporting every bit of embarrassing news about the family that can be dug up, then that's what they're going to do.

When power is your summum bonum you can justify almost any behavior, no matter how contemptible. Palin's persecutors are, in my opinion, the political equivalent of Tolkien's orcs in the film version of Lord of the Rings.


Overseas Contingencies

The Washington Post blog reports that the Pentagon has been advised that we must no longer refer to the global war on terror as the global war on terror:

The end of the Global War on Terror -- or at least the use of that phrase -- has been codified at the Pentagon. Reports that the phrase was being retired have been circulating for some time amongst senior administration officials, and this morning speechwriters and other staff were notified via this e-mail to use "Overseas Contingency Operation" instead.

"Overseas Contingency Operation" sounds like a project to deliver relief aid to some third world basketcase. And what, exactly, does the word "contingency" mean in this context, anyway? Why do bureaucrats feel the need to obfuscate everything they can until no one knows what the heck they're talking about? Pat Buchanan says the new bureaucratese reminds him of the old CIA term for killing the enemy. It was not called "killing," it was called "terminating with extreme prejudice." I don't know which formulation is a greater offense to intelligent people - the current Pentagon jargon or the old CIA construction.

Anyway, I was kind of getting used to calling the war on terror the Global War on Man-Caused Disasterists. I don't know why we can't just stick with that.


Happy Birthday, Flannery

If you're a cynic about human nature, if a wry smile flickers across your face when you're exposed to progressive flummery about the inherent goodness of man, if you think that life is indeed a tale told by an idiot and is mostly sad, if you have a deep appreciation for a writer who is able to paint word pictures with extraordinary artistry, and if you have a somewhat off-beat sense of humor, then Flannery O'Conner is your gal. I love her work, so you know what that says about me.

I'm not alone, though. Millions of others do, too, among whom is Ralph Wood of Baylor University. His brief essay on O'Conner on the anniversary of her birth (3/25/1925) is worth reading. He begins with this improbable opening:

Flannery O'Connor is an offensive writer. Readers who haven't dipped into her stories and books sometimes don't know where to begin with this author, who was born on this day in 1925.

It is almost impossible to read O'Connor without revulsion - so frequent are the deaths, so maniacal the characters, so uninviting the fictional world. There we encounter, for example, a club-footed delinquent who lies and steals because, he says, he's good at it; a little rich boy who drowns himself in search of the salvation his parents hold in contempt; a baptizing backwoods prophet who has spent time in an insane asylum and who deafened his own nephew with a shotgun blast; a failed white liberal writer who contracts a lifelong disease while seeking to celebrate a secular communion with black dairy workers; a mass-murdering misfit who guns down a complacent grandmother while complaining that Jesus has "thown" everything off balance; and a self-satisfied farm wife who thanks Jesus daily for making her both white and prosperous - until she is slugged in the head with a psychology textbook thrown by a Wellesley student.

All true, all true, and yet she's the best short story writer I've ever read. Happy birthday, Flannery. I'm sure the angels are amused by your wit and amazed at your wisdom.