Blame Those Dogged Liberals
Leonard Pitts Jr.
Maybe you remember Pavlov.
For those who slept through Psych 101,
Pavlov proved an animal could be trained to respond automatically to a given stimulus. American Spectator is about to prove it again.
As reported by Media Matters, the liberal media watchdog group, that conservative magazine recently sent an e-mail to subscribers, begging for
Higher paper prices? I ran that by
How much higher? "At the end of 2008, newsprint was around
And what of the role of perverse liberal incentives in that fluctuation? Woischwill laughed. Paper prices go up and down due to supply and demand, he said.
In other words, the free market at work. Imagine that. Not that I'm here to argue the price of paper. No, I'm here to parse Regnery's incantation of one word: liberal.
Conservative pols and pundits have done an astonishing job of rendering that word a synonym for a kind of birth defect that leaves one effete and nonsensical, even as they made "conservative" interchangeable with the healthy patriotism of the common folk. If you didn't know better, you'd never know liberals fought to end segregation and child labor -- or that conservatives opposed them.
This is not to say conservatives have never been right ("Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall") or liberals wrong ("Let's bomb
The byproduct of this chicanery is seen in the troubled political fortunes of
The byproduct is also evident in American political discourse, which increasingly takes place in alternate realities, spewing forth great clouds of words that say nothing.
But if these are hard times for independent thinkers and political discourse, they are boom times for politicians, pundits -- and publishers -- who have mastered the simple-minded Pavlovian politi-speak of the day: conservative, good; liberal, evil. It's telling that even liberals don't use the word liberal any more.
It's also telling that American Spectator felt no need to mount even a dubious argument about paper prices in asking readers for
And I have no doubt their readers will come through. One is reminded of Pavlov's poor dog, salivating helplessly whenever the bell was rung. Though I suppose the comparison is unfair in a way.
After all, "dogs" can't reason.
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Blame Those Dogged Liberals | Politics
(c) 2010 Leonard Pitts Jr.