Jay Lake (jaylake) wrote,
Jay Lake
jaylake

[politics] Semirandom observations from the progressive perspective

Thinking politics this morning, which probably means I'm not so sick any more. A few observations which have crossed my mind:

The conservative reaction to Al Gore's winning the Nobel Peace Prize is both predictable and telling. Rather than considering that such a substantial endorsement of Gore's work on global warming might merit revisiting both the topic itself and their perception of Gore's credibility, my friends on the right have simply widened their condemnation to include the entire rest of the world.

That's the kind of fixated thinking that lands individuals in the mental health care system. In politics it's called "consistency." What doesn't seem to occur to people who fetishize consistency in their political and moral philosophies is that new evidence can merit re-evaluation. I suppose this comes from the fundamentally prophetic basis of modern conservative thinking. Revelation doesn't admit of revision, at least not openly.

I can see the appeal of conservatism. It must be very comforting to wrap one's soul in the cloak of Truth and not have to worry about the fact that the real world doesn't have bright lines and sharp edges. "I don't do nuance" may as well be the primary plank of the Republican Party.

My other thought is about the oft-repeated complaint that the media has a liberal bias. This probably falls into the category of noticing the sky is blue, but I think when conservatives complain that the media has a liberal bias, what they're reacting to is a lack of sufficient congruency with the things they know to be true. I.e., the media isn't conservative enough. When liberals complain that media has a conservative bias, what they're reacting to is a well-documented overabundance of conservative viewpoints in the anchor chairs, on the mastheads, on the op-ed pages and in column inches. In other the words, the media is too conservative.

That's a nuance, of course.
Tags: politics
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