Irish doctor with too many thoughts, too little time and a blog that's supposed to check in on reality.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Any article that starts with

Scene: A large room, resembling a fallout shelter or a storage bunker, containing all of the books Alec Baldwin claims to have read but hasn’t
is worth reading. Especially when it's a G-File (for those of you who did not have your conservative values formed and your funny bone tickled in the late nineties/early noughties by the G-File - it's a column by Jonah Goldberg on NRO).
In many ways it became more than a column.
Jonah returns to GFile form with a lengthy FAQ session.
Like the vintage GFile (check out bottom of this page) it's hilarious but profoundly sensible conservatism.

I'll just share one point here (but do read it!) -
The way to tell if a liberal — or a conservative — is to be trusted is to see how fairly he or she deals with the other side’s arguments. Obviously, you can’t give a full airing to the other side’s point of view or you’d be spending all your time making the other side’s case. And not every column has to be a on the one-hand, on-the-other-hand affair. But, over the long haul, you can tell which liberals actually have the intellectual self-confidence to engage with the other side’s best arguments and not just their worst ones. Meanwhile, if you look at, say, Maureen Dowd, there isn’t even an attempt to be fair to the other side. It’s all bile, snark, and sneer — which would be a good name for a law firm in mordor. Lord knows, I don’t mind bile per se, but it can only be a single ingredient, not the whole thing. Dowd's stuff is closer to fiction writing than opinion journalism. I think a lot of rightwingers have a similar problem — and I wouldn’t recommend them to liberals trying to get a fair read on the conservative point of view either. That doesn’t mean they’re not worth reading. But entertainment is not necessarily argument.

I'm half thinking of setting up a "bile, snark and sneer" section of my blogroll.


Blogger wulfbeorn said...

"bile, snark and sneer section" - LOL!

March 20, 2006 4:44 p.m.  

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