Monday, November 8, 2010

Words of (Conventional) Wisdom from Graydon Carter

The editor of Vanity Fair is in dudgeon over last week’s election. Let’s call it the middle dudgeon of a well-dressed (and beautifully coiffed!) domesticated ungulate who receives the information upon which he bases his declared opinions from the rest of the herd of scribblers and celebrity-hounds who ruminate alongside him (nor should the excogitations of the actor/celebrities who flock to his parties be dismissed—they think things about things, too, and they have all the emotions). They heard this wave of Dem/lib defeats was coming, but it’s just possible they didn’t really believe it: How, after all, could it happen? Eight years of suffering—war, torture, lies, and oh, that mangled language—ended with the advent of Obamunism. Now they have to relinquish their antibiotic-free ranging and go back to huddle in their Robert Couturier-decorated pens? And all because of an enraged, pitchfork-bearing, brimstone mob of Tea Partiers? They don’t know anybody like that! Those people live elsewhere, in the great unwashed middle, as Katie Couric so deliciously put it, and aren’t they really just too dumb to vote, anyway?

If you share the herd’s fine politics and good clothes your emissions will pass muster: You don’t need to know anything at all about your subject to expound upon it—your fellow bovines will swallow it as their own cud. Thus is Mr. Carter’s analysis of America’s flaws not much more than the pre-digested grass regurgitated daily in the pages of the New York Times, the Atlantic, and The New Republic, among others: “The general anti-Obama rage out there is palpable.”

But it’s no more virulent than the anti-Bush sentiment that has pervaded the country for much of the past decade—although this being America, there’s an attendant hatred for Obama that has more to do with race than anything else. What makes today’s fury more worrying is the fact that angry right-wing extremists tend to carry guns in disproportionate numbers to their liberal counterparts.

Interesting choice of words—“anti-Bush sentiment”—putting delicately what could fairly be described as some of the most vicious “discourse” ever to emanate from the stalls of “journalism” and academia. And who, while we’re on the subject, could the liberal counterparts of angry right-wing extremists be? Surely he doesn’t mean Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers? Or the stick-wielding Black Panthers menacing voters at a polling place—twice?

But it’s the casually tossed-off “this being America, there’s an attendant hatred for Obama that has more to do with race than anything else,” that really catches the eye: Mr. Obama has been president for nearly two years; Mr. Carter suggests we great unwashed ones have just now noticed he’s black, and have rushed to empty our gun cabinets. He gives himself away, though. Dumb (and armed) as we may be, we get the message: “This being Vanity Fair, there’s an attendant hatred for America that has more to do with class than anything else.”

And you can take that to the butcher.


  1. Very nice job of taking a hypocrital snob to the woodshed. I recenty read an ariticle about Art and Bush -- whole exhibits of horrific paintings such as one showing Chency slitting the throat of the American Eagle as he rode it. The Obama art section? The HOPE poster and how supposedly thousands of fans are making their own versions of it and other "devotional art" in his name.

    Plus, he projected repeatedly. The one slamming the door and saying "whatever" is the Democratic party -- no rock start black men on the ballot? Whatever. WE are the immature teen-agers adn WE throw tantrums? Even he must see the projection in such statements.

  2. Sorry. Make that "rock star."

  3. I see in the on-line New York Times this morning: "Debt Plan Ideas Draw Scorn of Liberals and Tea Party". I'm pretty certain that Mr. Carter knows that not anti-Obama sentiment emanates from the right.

  4. Look, I'm sorry to be such a groupie, but when you're playing these guys like Bud Powell taking Ornithology for a stroll in the park, I tend to get kind of elated. Are the Bad Rachel t-shirts coming? Is there some production snafu in some horrid little sweatshop? Or shall we be forced to make our own with spray paint and stencils? Your deadly beautiful writing thrills me. Expect love-sick poems from me, and flowers are a possibility. Yours quite seriously, and fondly, 喬