Thursday, September 27, 2007

Hope harder, you bastards!

I see Harry's Place have recruited another dozen new bloggers; surely at some point they will need to hire a dedicated human resources department. Standing out for me is this piece of dispiriting crap which epitomises that Tinkerbell tendency of the Decent Left which I hoped had been beaten out of them:

A few weeks back I was discussing the consequences of the surge with a couple of anti-war Eustonites. One in particular was disturbed to find his beliefs in solidarity with everyday Iraqis better represented by neo-conservative writers than those on the left

A note in passing. This is kind of like saying "A few weeks back I was talking to Bill Oddie and he mentioned that he was keen on birdwatching". Yes, no shit sherlock. Note from the next paragraph that this unnamed Eustonaut is "anti-war" in the sense that he supports continuing US military occupation of Iraq and was in favour of the escalation of the US military presence earlier in the year. In this sense, I supposed, I am "anti-cheese-sandwiches", because I like them and want more of them.

, illustrating his frustration at current Democrat "cut-and-run" policy with the example of a presidential hopeful essentially calling General Petraeus a liar. His despair at Democrat foreign policy being dictated more by short-term political gain than a sense of responsibility to the people of Iraq made for uncomfortable listening.

Ahhh the siren song of Decency. If things are getting worse rather than better in Iraq, then General Petraeus is a liar. If General Petraeus is a liar, then how on earth can it be a display of "responsibility" or "solidarity" with the people of Iraq to not call him on it? Given that things are very bad in Iraq, if somebody is trying to tell the US government that their current strategy is working, and it isn't, then that person's doing something very dangerous and irresponsible to the people of Iraq.

Of course it's the classic Nick Cohen rhetorical move; to define anything except "stay the course" as de facto anti-Iraqi. From the point of view of the Decents, to even discuss whether we're making things worse rather than better is evil and irrational. On the basis of no evidence at all. They still from time to time try to pretend that the Johns Hopkins/Lancet team, whose one and only priority was to measure the scale of the disaster in Iraq in the hope that something might be done, were not on the side of the Iraqis.

I like to pretend, if only for the sake of continued hope in the future of democracy, that views like this are only typical of the more moronic element of modern Decency, and that there are more sensible Decent arguments about the future of the democracy-building project. But really, are there?

9 Comments:

Anonymous matt w said...

Note also that the use of "Democrat" as an adjective, as in "Democrat foreign policy," sends a signal -- that the speaker is an asshole.

9/28/2007 02:05:00 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

They were pretty clever on HP though in their choice of the original contributors, as it's not like you ever think 'oh I wish Marcus Laughton' was back.

They do seem to be taking the 'meeting place of the Decent Left' thing a touch literally though. But really, why do you still read it - is it merely your desire to please the readers of Aarowatch?

9/28/2007 07:22:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why did you ever read Harry's Place? Surely watching Dave, Nic, Norm, one of the Alan Johnsons, Brivati and Kamm is enough to keep the readers happy.

9/28/2007 11:07:00 AM  
Anonymous bruschetaaboy said...

point taken. I haven't Watched Aaro for quite a while and will attempt to remedy the ommission

9/28/2007 12:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Phil said...

You should probably watch the other Alan Johnson as well, just to be on the safe side - I'm not aware that he's exhibited any Decent tendencies to date, but you never know.

9/28/2007 12:42:00 PM  
Anonymous dd said...

The "other" Alan Johnson? Do you mean the Scottish footballer or the former BBC Gaza correspondent and kidnapped slaphead?

9/28/2007 04:10:00 PM  
Blogger ejh said...

Ah, I was thinking of doing that gag but I thought "why nick jokes off the Flying Rodent?"

9/28/2007 05:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Simon said...

"as it's not like you ever think 'oh I wish Marcus Laughton' was back."

Has Marcus gone again, then? I gave up reading HP about a year ago when he came back.

9/28/2007 10:00:00 PM  
Anonymous dd ("plagiarism"? it's the internet, mom) said...

because it's easier and funnier than making them up myself.

9/29/2007 01:34:00 PM  

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