Two or Three (.net)

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. - Jesus


All your strawmen are belong to us

by Aaron Earls [+/-] show/hide

With the death of Terri Schiavo and the Pope, I have been wondering when we will get back to the real work that needs to go on in America - making up fake people to bash conservatives and Bush's judicial nominees. Now that is getting back to work for the American people.

Washington Post columnist Art Buchwald, who apparently has turned a schtick of talking to imaginary people into a very lucrative profession, writes of a conversation he has with his conservative friend Sam Sampson (definitely not this Sam).

Sam it seems is just your average conservative guy. He is mad that the liberals in the Senate are holding up the President's judicial nominations, so mad that in fact he expreses a desire to kill all the liberal judges. You know, just like every good conservative. Sam is afterall the conservative everyman.

Not only does he want to kill them, Sam argues that some judges are "nonhuman" and only "our people" can tell the difference between human judges and nonhuman judges by "read[ing] their decisions and watch[ing] their body language."

Not only does Sam have violent tendencies and the strange ability to tell a nonhuman from a human, he is also an idiot that cannot construct an argument for the defense of the death penalty, while maintaining a pro-life (on abortion) stance and whose idea to fix the judicial system is to "file a friend-of-the-court brief on cases we like, and an enemy-of-the-court on cases we don't."

Of course Sam goes on to describe why he doesn't like the ACLU (because "they're always taking flag-burning cases") and why having the Ten Commandments "on court property so everyone can read them" was exactly what "our founding fathes had in mind." Because doesn't every conservative argue that an essential part of our nation should be the requirment that every courthouse has the Ten Commandments, not just that this issue should be decided upon by the people (specifically the people of the area), but that everyone courthouse should be ordered to have a monument to the commandments?

Why am I suddenly hit with the thought that Sam is not, in fact, a real person? Why does this remind me of film critic Pauline Kael of the New Yorker and her infamous quote after the 1972 Presidential election? Maybe becauase I think Art might as well be saying "How can that be? No one I know wants conservative judges."

Hat Tip: Chris at Patterico's

Update: Thanks to Ace for the link, even though he bashes the blog name for lacking sizzle. So maybe we could be Two or Three of Spades HQ, would that add enough sizzle? We go for substance over, style (which apparently includes fake retirements and numerous fake guest bloggers including a time traveling sandwich). It's all about the substance, the sometimes sporadic, contradictory substance.


  • It's called satire. It's supposed to be over-the-top. The fact that it got under your skin means it was successful.

    I've heard and read plenty of conservative "unfairness" towards liberals. What's the matter, can't take it?

    By Blogger Louis, at 4/06/2005 10:09 AM  

  • It didn't get under my skin and yes I can take it. I just didn't think it was done very well. The satire did not work because (if for no other reason) the characature that he painted is the person that most liberal media think of when they think of conservatives. It is not over-the-top enough for many liberals who have no contact with actual conservatives to think it is somehow inaccurate.

    I think Maureen Dowd could write something more coherent and worth reading, which is saying a lot.

    By Blogger Aaron, at 4/06/2005 11:09 AM  

  • I have mixed feelings about the satirization of conservatives.

    On one hand, satire is a great way to highlight problems and encourage social change.

    However, in the hands of a bafoon, it merely raises tensions between already polarized groups, creating "more heat than light."

    Arguably, that's what this author was doing - creating straw men and resorting to ad hominem arguments rather than a reasoned approach.

    On the other hand, the more liberals act in such an obviously childish manner, creating obvious straw men (although I suppose hyperbole is often part of satire), they are further alienating themselves from thinking moderates and liberals.

    I expect at least a gain of 2 seats for Republicans in the Senate next election time, based on this type of behavior, exemplified by Mr. Dean, the new loudmouth, er, mouthpiece of the Democratic party.

    By Blogger papa, at 4/06/2005 2:27 PM  

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