Monday, December 20, 2010

George Will, No Labels, and irony

George Will goes all gangsta on the No Labels crew:
As the new political group No Labels convened in Manhattan, a judge was issuing a decision that illustrated why the group's premise is preposterous and its pretense is cloying. The premise, obscured by gaseous rhetoric, is that political heat is inherently disproportionate. The complacent pretense is that it is virtuous to transcend the vice of partisanship.[...]

The perpetrators of this mush purport to speak for people who want to instruct everyone else about how to speak about politics. Granted, there always are people who speak extravagantly, and modern technologies - television, the Internet - have multiplied their megaphones. But blowhards, although unattractive, are easy to avoid.[...]

No Labels, its earnestness subverting its grammar, says: "We do not ask any political leader to ever give up their label - merely put it aside." But adopting a political label should be an act of civic candor. When people label themselves conservatives or liberals we can reasonably surmise where they stand concerning important matters, such as Hudson's ruling.

Aside from his obligatory swipe at liberalism and odd use of the recent Hudson decision as a hook to hang his opinion on, Will isn't really wrong when he calls out No Label for its feel-good 'bromides' and 'banalities'...broken clocks being right twice a day, and all that...

However, George Will lambasting anyone for their 'sanctimony' or 'gaseous rhetoric' is, well, ironic. My 5-Minute Google for Will pulls up more than a few examples...such as his hissy fit thrown at Senator Jim Webb for not being polite enough to George Bush or this column, in which he whines about Cindy Sheehan not being polite enough to George Bush (among other bits of prissyness and failed predictions), using the situation as a hook to hang his opinion.*

I would argue that Will could have ranked higher on Salon's 'Hack List', but the rationale War Room provided is spot on:

George Will is a sanctimonious moralist, a pretentious hypocrite, a congenital liar and a boring pundit, to boot. In these days of red-faced screaming weirdos like Glenn Beck and obvious dolts like Sean Hannity, Will can seem like a harmless throwback to a calmer era in political discourse, but don't let his demeanor fool you: The guy's as utterly amoral as the loudest talk radio shouter, and he's a living example of the truth that there's never any punishment for bad behavior in punditland.

 At least the No Labels crew haven't proved themselves to be hypocrites (yet). George Will, on the other hand...

*sensing a pattern yet?

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