December 17, 2003

The latté is the politics

One of the frustrations of being a "warblogger" is that the anti-war types will snipe and sneer endlessly, but won't debate. At least not using dead-white-men-of-ancient-Greece-patriarchical-homophobic tools like, you know, "logic," or "facts." At least I've never had a real debate�perhaps i'm too minor a weblogger. (Though I've noticed that if I make some trifling mistake in an otherwise impeccably [I think] logical argument, the epee is often embedded in my gizzard with blinding speed, with the rest of the stuff still ignored.)

A subset of this frustration is when you ask some leftizoid: "OK, you don't like the President's plans. At least they are bold attempts to take on big problems. What's your big vision?" What's your plan? "...And answer came there none."

I think this article, The Bike-Path Left suggests a reason why...

....He's [Dean] full of anger.

But only for peripheral issues. Ask him serious questions about the president's key responsibilities--national security and foreign policy--and the passion drains away as it did with Chris Matthews. David Brooks, visiting Burlington in 1997 in search of what eventually became his thesis "Bobos in Paradise," concluded that the quintessential latt� burg was "relatively apolitical." He's a smart guy but he was wrong. All the stuff he took as evidence of the lack of politics--pedestrianization, independent bookstores--is the politics. Because all the big ideas failed, culminating in 1989 in Eastern Europe with the comprehensive failure of the biggest idea of all, the left retreated to all the small ideas: in a phrase, bike paths. That's what Bill Clinton meant when he said the era of big government was over; instead, he'd be ushering in the era of lots and lots of itsy bits of small government that, when you tote 'em up, works out even more expensive than the era of big government. That's what Howard Dean represents--the passion of the Bike-Path Left....

....For hard-core Democrats, the whole war thing is an unwelcome intrusion on what large numbers of people had assumed to be a permanent post-Martian politics. When you're at a Dean get-together, you realize they're not angry about the war, so much as having to talk about the war....

Posted by John Weidner at December 17, 2003 1:55 PM
Weblog by John Weidner