Thursday, August 25


I'm old. I may have blogged about that before, but, hey, I'm old. I forget.

Another round of World O'Crap's Wingnut Island, another loss for The Team That Name-Checks Edmund Burke. Not that it wasn't deserved; the loser, Armstrong "Your Message Here" Williams was a foregone conclusion of a loser when he was called in as a last-minute replacement for David Brooks, who probably would have gotten tossed if he had shown up.

Even so, I was a bitter, bitter man. It was obvious from the comments--and this time it wasn't a bunch of people following a link from Atrios, it was the very cream of a very creamy collection of commenters. And it's obvious they refuse to do my bidding.

I'm old, and I'm concerned about incontinent nostalgia. Maybe I've blogged about that before. But in my day, a wingnut wasn't prized for his nuttiness. He wasn't prized at all, come to think of it. Now those were good times. But if he had been it wouldn't have been for his nuttiness, but his wingy goodness. They had faces then, and they were all screwed up like they'd just eaten something sour. In a Grant Wood painting.

So, okay, it's a young man's game. To be popular, today's wingnut has to have a fire in his belly and nothing in his head, and that fire must be fueled by improper potty training and a lifelong grudge against everyone who had sex in high school, or even a date. Railing about "the 18th Century Enlightenment" is so 19th Century. I suspect that even knowing there was an 18th Century is horribly passé.

On the other hand, it's not as if Bobo Brooks or George Will were getting more tail than Burt Ward, back in the day. So they're a little more graceful, okay, a lot more graceful, about not revealing the depths of their psychosexual issues with every utterance than, say, the Corner Kids. Does it make them any less wingnutty? But then again, maybe I'm the one who's got the wrong end of the telescope here. Maybe the public is right, and the finest wingnuttery is the stuff that looks like the picture on the wrapper and not the pathetic, real candy bar underneath.

Then I thought, "Hey, what's that throbbing just above my left eye?" And it occurred to me, I have a blog! And while popular culture is not exactly my strong suit, it seems to me that all the people who get voted off reality shows get their own shows, or guest-star shots on WB sitcoms, or they get to do panel on the late night show with the guy who replaced the guy who Jon Stewart replaced. And is there a blog anywhere more equipped to welcome Z-list celebrities? Probably. But I called dibs.

So why not invite the losers over, let 'em sit on the couch, lie on the couch, whatever's comfortable, and see what we can do to shake up the old image, bring out that inner 3rd chair violist, and whip this team into shape, whaddya say? Are you with me? Yeah!

Aw, well, this is probably gonna wind up in the garage with all my other half-finished projects.


D. Sidhe said...

I'm with you!
Frankly, it's a shame that we have to vote anybody off at all. They're all keepers, to my mind. Or at least, "keep-them-away-from-actual-people-ers".

Honestly, Williams really had to go. I'm sorry, but there it is. If it helps, I think Krauthammer's got what it takes to go most all of the way. Swank is a sentimental favorite, but let's face it, he's also a nobody.
Does batshit insane count when nobody knows who you are beyond the voices in your head and the demons in your toilet? I don't think so.

doghouse riley said...

Yeah, I do understand why people want the Ultimate Wingnut to be the Most Irrational as well. I was just working the refs a little, 'cause if it comes down to Coulter v. Swank, what do you say? "That's nuts!"? I was pretty embarrassed when s.z. addressed my "criticisms"; I thought, shit, now I'm a party pooper.

To me the real nuttiness is that the Times prints Tierney's paean to oxycontin or Bobo's defense of the worst excesses of the religious nutcase while pretending he and his party are above it, not some prematurely senile goat with an internet connection ranting about how the UN fluoridated his water.

KathyR said...


You can't be any older than my husband and it is not possible that I am married to an Old Guy. Therefore, you are not old.

I don't have a horse in the Quien es mas Wingnutty race.

Pepper said...

O lost track in the Wingnut Island race. I don't think I voted because I couldn't decide. Shame on me.

I think that intellectual fraud matters, and Brooks and Co. should be called on it. If you invite that puffball on your sofa, trick him into saying "eighteenth-century englightenment," and then hit him in the face with Locke's "An Essay Concerning Human Understanding."

Those MFs get Burke wrong anyway and have never read him, 'cept maybe the Marie Antoinette passage from "Reflections on the Revolution in France." They should talk to Dr. Pepper sometime - he'd give 'em a sound tongue-lashing.

PS, as my comment grows ever-longer - you aren't old, and I have learned pop culture from you! How else would I have known about the "Where Are They Now Battle of the Bands" featuring Loverboy???

D. Sidhe said...

Worry not, Doghouse. You're a well-respected sort of cantankerous.

It really is a valid point. I mean, Rush Limbaugh would not be half so offensive if so many people weren't listening to him every day.

Swank is basically an uninhibited Pat Robertson, but odds are good none of Swank's followers feel they are called upon to be the Hand Of God and bomb women's clinics or beat gay people senseless. I wouldn't make that bet about Robertson's flock.

VDare is *supposed* to publish Steve Sailer, the same should *not* be said of the NYT.

Dave Neiwert talks about "transmitters", the somewhat respectable ones who pass along to the mainstream ideas that would otherwise be regarded as the territory of racists or other extremists.

So, your point was well made, and I think well-taken. What makes someone's ideology frightening is about half what he's saying and half who's listening.

On the other hand, within the confines of WoC, it seems pretty much a given that we're all using different methods to decide who's the wingnuttiest.
And I find that to be part of the charm.

jackd said...

I have no idea if having no standard for the voting on Wingnut Island was s.z.'s original idea or if she's just going with the flow, but that's certainly how it's turned out.

Seems to me that what Our Host is arguing for is something I'd go along with. If there's a measure, it's a combination of 1) prominence, 2) respectability, and 3) jaw-dropping idiocy, especially when #3 doesn't seem to have any impact on 1 and 2.

So the Rev. Swanks don't make the cut for #1 or #2, but the #3 score is out of this world. The Coulters, Malkinses, and Limbaughs rate pretty good on prominence but low on respectability. Victor Davis Gaius Valerius Agamemnon Hanson gets pretty good respectability scores, but prominence? Nah.

This is obviously going to favor the real high-profile crowd, like George Fwill or Charlie Cabbagemallet. But that's the real fun, isn't it? Pointing where the folks who are supposed to be Serious Opinion Leaders are just Grant Swanks with better grammar.