In the year after Barack Obama was elected president, Sam Tannenhaus, editor of the New York Times Book Review, came out with a book of his own. It was called The Death of Conservatism.
Tell me when you stop laughing. What’s he going to call his next book – The San Francisco Giants Will Never Win the World Series?
Okay, I know it’s a tad unfair to make fun, since conservatism looked dead as a doornail in the wake of Mr. Obama’s election – at least from where Mr. Tannenhaus was sitting in the New York Times building on the west side of Manhattan.
But Tannenhaus isn’t the only one who (if I were gloating might say) is looking ridiculous today.
Ever hear of Richard Belzer? He’s a comedian and actor who plays a quirky detective on one of the Law & Order shows. In real life, he’s a far left Hollywood type who like so many other far left Hollywood types fancies himself a political scientist. A few years ago he penned a piece for the Huffington Post, in which he said: “Conservatism is in its last throes if you will, twisting in the wind, dying like communism did because neither philosophy works by definition — they both operate from the fraudulent premise built around contempt for and control of the people.”
I told you he was a comedian.
And then there were the fevered lefties of the worldwide web, like the guy who wrote this gem on the Daily Kos site: “There is a certain audacity in declaring the near-permanent death of a political ideology, so allow me to be perfectly clear in my meaning: Republicanism is not dead–far from it–but American ‘conservatism’ as we have come to know it is. Kiss it goodbye; it’s gone, and it’s not coming back.”
I almost feel bad dredging up this nonsense – especially given what we know today, the day after yesterday’s election. And I hate using clichés, but taking potshots at these astute political observers is like shooting fish in a barrel. And I never, ever steal someone else’s great line, but the reports of the death of conservatism have been greatly exaggerated.
As for the death of honest journalism – that’s another matter.
Did you notice how many times the word “angry” popped up right before the word “voters” in news reports about the mid-term elections? Voters were angry, that’s why they were throwing the Democrats out. How else to explain it?
Oh yeah, they were also irrational. After all, no rational person would vote for Republicans over Democrats.
And they were acting like little brats.
In September, two months before the election, Eugene Robinson, the Pulitzer prize winning columnist at the Washington Post, ran a column under the headline, “The spoiled-brat American electorate.” This is how it began: “According to polls, Americans are in a mood to hold their breath until they turn blue. Voters appear to be so fed up with the Democrats that they’re ready to toss them out in favor of the Republicans — for whom, according to those same polls, the nation has even greater contempt. This isn’t an ‘electoral wave,’ it’s a temper tantrum.”
Interesting, isn’t it, that if you listen to liberal journalists the voters are always angry and stupid when they’re tossing Democrats out. But they’re high-minded and caring when they’re giving Republicans the heave-ho.
You may recall that in 2006 and 2008 when Democrats took over both Houses of Congress, it was those high-minded, caring “soccer moms,” looking out for the welfare of their families, who went to the polls to vote for Democrats. They were never described as “angry” or “irrational” or “throwing a temper tantrum” — even though they were cleaning house just as the voters did yesterday.
So let’s review: As far as liberal journalists are concerned, when the American people vote for Democrats it’s because they’re full of hope and want positive change and care about their little kiddies. And when they vote for Republicans, it’s because they’re angry, stupid and irrational.
Good thing there’s no such thing as liberal bias in the media.
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