March 26, 2005

Brave non-conformists...

Quote from KC Star (copied from OJ because I can't endure to fill out another one of those registration forms.)

Conformity rocks across America these days while dissent keeps losing its voice.

That condition emanates from the White House, and it's spreading across the country like a cancer. Gone are the voices of reason and caution such as former Gen. Colin Powell. He stepped down as secretary of state when President Bush began a second term.

Powell was replaced by Condoleezza Rice, former national security adviser and close Bush confidant. What Bush unilaterally wants goes.

The same go-along-to-get-along infection grips the GOP-dominated House and Senate. The wrongheaded legislative action they took with Bush this week to send the Terri Schiavo feeding tube case to federal court is the latest example.

It's as if many in government have signed loyalty oaths such as those required in the McCarthy era when alternative stands weren't tolerated...

This reminds me of the way one becomes a "nonconformist" by joining a nonconformist group and and conforming to their ways. Just put on your beatnik outfit and you can stand in brave dee-fiance of 1950's conformity!

But really folks, the idea that conforming to the left-wing position is "non-conformity" (and "brave" and "dissent" and "speaking truth to power") is so silly I'm amazed these people keep pushing it. This piece is particularly goofy because it equates "reason and caution" with non-conformity. Huh? Colin Powell?

And: "...the McCarthy era when alternative stands weren't tolerated." No no. Being a Communist wasn't tolerated. (And the Communists were in fact a group that enforced stifling conformity.) There were lots of people taking alternative stands in that era, contrary to the myth.

I guess the whole schtick about Lefties being non-conformists comes from the 60's when long-haired rebels supposedly defied crew-cut middle-American conformity. But I WAS THERE, and I tell you that that's pure baloney. I went to Berkeley during that time. Those "60's rebels" were conforming to a fad. Totally. The clothes, the hairstyles, the patter, the causes--all out of the same cookie-cutter. You could drop into any big campus and see the same types, the same faces, and be able to just guess what they thought and believed. They were conformists then, and they still are! It's the 21st Century, but they are still pretending it's 1972.

Posted by John Weidner at March 26, 2005 7:37 PM
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