Wednesday, August 18

This Is Your Brain Frying On The Sidewalk.

SO it takes Gregg "Some of My Best Friends Are" Easterbrook more than a thousand words before this year's initial Tuesday Morning Quarterback gets to the really big off-season story: Al Gore's divorce. Not really sure what caused the delay, but he makes up for it by including a picture of The Kiss, which leads to another of those brilliant insights which only Gregg "Saying There's No Such Thing As Global Warming Doesn't Mean There's No Such Thing As Global Warming" Easterbrook believes he has:
In retrospect, could that nationally televised kiss have been more evidence that everything about Al Gore is phony?

Now I dunno about you. I'm not the world's biggest Al Gore fan; I do think he doesn't receive anything close to enough credit for actually doing what everybody else claims they want done, which is reducing government expenditures, and, absent everything else about Gore and his history as a public figure, I think you kinda gotta scratch your head about that one, or conclude that the country is chock-a-bloc with lying assholes; regular readers are familiar with my choice in the matter. Remember that in 2000 Al Gore is Wooden! trumped George W. Bush is a Barely Literate Kleptomaniac by a factor of fifty. Al Gore's a Liar! Al Gore's a Phony! Assuming you, as I, occasionally survey the major players on the national political scene, is, or has it ever been, Al Gore you would single out as the paragon of those traits? Would you even bother pointing that shit out at all? Reader, if you need more than one hand to tally all the public figures in this country, of whatever stripe, whom you believe to be Genuine, either you know a lot of celebrities I've never heard of, or you're missing several fingers.

Okay, The Kiss was staged. So was Saddam Hussein's nuclear arsenal. Which one's still bothering you a decade later?

I haven't piled on Easterbrook. I grew up reading the columns of Indianapolis Racist Beacon (at that time the Birch Society Weekly Denouncer and Fluoridation Report) sports editor Bob Collins, and the syndicated West Coast legend Jim Murray, neither of whom could go 800 words in the Sixties without mentioning Muhammad Ali's religion or Joe Namath's Fu Manchu. So I've got a sort of built-up immunity. Easterbrook was a Global Warming denier until 2006, when he decided to half-bow (not the Full Obama) to the the scientific consensus which had suddenly appeared. I don't really care. It's been obvious all along that bigger and more powerful idiots are controlling the tilt of the table on this one. Easterbrook's position on Global Warming, Space Weapons, and Feminine Pulchritude are just things you have to strain out to get to the plankton of those columns of his.

Two things do bother me, though. The first is the assumption of superiority based on being wrong first, on the grounds that this proves your skepticism. (It's notable how often this attitude correlates with a lifelong religious belief.) The second is how the original belief, like the Fog, pads along on little cat feet. I've trained a lot of cats, to some extent or other, and usually not much. If you get a cat to halt at a line, and go no further, it will not be long before the first paw is on the line, then half over the line, and then both are on the other side. Thus Easterbrook, formerly dead wrong by his own admission:
Check this recent researchers' statement in Science magazine. I'll exempt the statement from my normal complaint about science papers with an unrealistic numbers of authors -- it's signed by 255 people! -- since it is intended as a political declaration. The statement shows there is a strong, but also mild, scientific consensus: Climate is changing in part owing to human action. That's not the doomsday view beloved on the left, nor the denier view beloved on the right, but is a reason to begin greenhouse-gas regulation.

So "The Left" was correct because it loves it some Doomsday. And moderates like, oh, Gregg Easterbrook--moderates who just might happen to have a book out arguing that Everything Is Always Getting Better But We Won't Admit It--are More Correcter Still, because they only want us to treat the Doomsday potential, without all the celebrating.

And without, presumably, The Spice, though first I'd like to suggest that if modern life is Two Scoops of Triple Chocolate Fudge Ripple at Affordable Prices, that the well-born and well-off Easterbrook simply renounce all his belongings and income above the American average, and have himself a ball.

Now then: the locals in Boone County have discovered Spice, the herbal "incense" and secret Marihuana substitute which is turning our nation's children into a pack of drooling imbeciles when it doesn't kill them outright. They banned the stuff Monday, so, effective next week, teenagers will have to smoke real pot, or buy it online, or drive ten miles to the next county.

They apparently learned about the stuff from local Channel 8 which, mired in a ratings slump coupled with a stable of "talent" that makes Fox and Friends look professional, has decided that Screaming Sensationalism is the one idea sure to put 'em back on top.

They gave the story to Deanna Dewberry, apparently on the grounds that she was the only anchor out of two-dozen who hadn't yet sacrificed every last shred of decency in the cause. Dewberry came to the market five years ago as a reasonably competent teleprompter reader, something which was almost refreshing, considering. It took 8 about two months to correct that. She now gives the impression of auditioning for the Bette Davis role in some dinner-theater musical version of Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? In the last couple weeks she's added a lunge to her repertoire, which came in handy for this forty-year-old retread of Dragnet. I swear to God, yesterday she reported the stuff contains THC. My Poor Wife and I have a friendly bet on the next escalation: she's going with the classic "Jumped off a building thinking he could fly"; I'm going with "Got high, stared at the sun until their eyeballs melted". That leaves "Put the turkey to bed and the baby in the oven" open, if anyone's interested.

3 comments:

drip said...

strong, but also mild,. Just how I like my coffee.

Anonymous said...

You might think Greg Easterbrook has only kissed his one true love throughout his entire life. If so I'm sure his mother appreciates it.

Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. said...

She now gives the impression of auditioning for the Bette Davis role in some dinner-theater musical version of Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? In the last couple weeks she's added a lunge to her repertoire, which came in handy for this forty-year-old retread of Dragnet. I swear to God, yesterday she reported the stuff contains THC. My Poor Wife and I have a friendly bet on the next escalation: she's going with the classic "Jumped off a building thinking he could fly"; I'm going with "Got high, stared at the sun until their eyeballs melted". That leaves "Put the turkey to bed and the baby in the oven" open, if anyone's interested.

My mom just asked me why I've fallen off the couch in uncontrollable laughter.