Tuesday, May 9


What is it with pundits and columnists that they can't take criticism or disagreement with their positions? Richard Cohen is the latest to whine about the mean old lefty blogs, which he labels a "digital lynch mob."

I think it's mostly a matter of ego. After all, they're being paid big bucks for their opinions, so until the "internets" provided an easy platform for readers to respond, they assumed their opinions were more important than those of the hoi polloi. Getting thousands of critical e-mails hurts their tender feelings, so they fire back by declaring the responses first "epistolary spitballs" (oh, that's a clever term!) and then likening them to rocks thrown by anti-war protestors at demonstrations. Cohen goes on to warn that such people will lose the election for Democrats in the same way that the anti-war movement "elected" Richard Nixon in '72 and thus prolonged the Vietnam War. Cohen's real stretch, though, is his prediction that we "haters" will be responsible for prolonging the Iraq War:

Institution after institution failed America -- the presidency, Congress and the press. They all endorsed a war to rid Iraq of what it did not have. Now, though, that gullibility is being matched by war critics who are so hyped on their own sanctimony that they will obliterate distinctions, punishing their friends for apostasy and, by so doing, aiding their enemies. If that's going to be the case, then Iraq is a war its critics will lose twice -- once because they couldn't stop it and once more at the polls.

Right. We have a right to be angry, but not at HIM. He's a "friend" and by criticizing him we aid the enemy.

That's the language and sentiment of Bush and the DLC, that's what lost us the '04 presidential election, and that's a "distinction" Cohen and his ilk "obliterate" themselves. The Rethuglicans would call it "appeasement" -- and we're not going to take it anymore.

I actually agreed with Cohen on one point: that Stephen Colbert's attack on Bush at the White House correspondents dinner wasn't funny. Of course I didn't set myself up, as Cohen did, as an expert on comedy; I merely said that though brilliant, and warranted, and much appreciated by me, the subject matter was so serious that it hurt too much to laugh. If Cohen had said something like that, he wouldn't have gotten all the "vituperative" responses he decries. He didn't.

Come on, Richard, grow up. "Stick and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me." What a wienie.

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