PZ reacts to probably the three zillionth moronically off-kilter “article” he’s seen in WingNut Daily with a plaintive question: “Is this actually a parody site?”
Indeed, it remains tempting to think such things in spite of a steady and discomfiting stream of hard evidence that huge numbers of people — all of them columnists or bloggers for some beshitted and mendacious outfit or another by this point — are just as misinformed and resistant to rational thought as they appear. And this seems to be getting worse.
My half-ass theory as to the continued downslide:
What’s happening is that huge groups of ignorant or just plain stupid “conservatives” who were already clanking along at around a 30 on the Global Assessment of Functioning scale before the November elections have decompensated completely in the wake of the voting results, and are now in feces-as-crayons territory.
Previously, thanks to the fact that a rip-roaring persecution complex is a sine qua non of the kind of votership who put and kept the Bushies in office, the sorts of people whose chief sources if “information” in recent years have been FOX News and Michelle Malkin were thoroughly convinced that everyone was out to screw them — a strange idea, considering fact that at no time in recent history had any U.S. Congress and its president together been more friendly to religious-nut interests.
Their griping was as legitimate as, say, the AMA complaining that the average U.S. citizen was becoming too skinny, and hearkened to the fact that religious people given a smidgeon of influence quickly come to believe that anything besides unchallenged authority represents a “marginalization” of their beliefs. Either their brains never passed second grade, or they realize that second-grade bully tactics are the most effective tactics of all when dealing with proud “moderates” who think that giving equal weight to all opinions is always the most desirable approach, the proven historical failure of this ethos notwithstanding.
Now that the Democrats really have gained more influence, the craziest of these f*ckers have completely lost or purposely shed all pretense at coherence, and have annihiliated the thin boundary that formerly existed between their output and hysterical self-parody. Systematic paranoia will do this. They’re like the Old Man of the Mountain was at the time it collapsed (only less stately): held up — barely — for a while by all manner of struts and beams and reinforcements, but finally unable to withstand the wind when it rose from a passing breeze to a gust. And the crash, though long in the making, was loud and ugly indeed.
Interestingly, the dissapearance of the final traces of near-rationality from some of the blogs I used to frequent for fun, like Kerwin’s and Stop the ACLU, has made them that much less interesting. If it’s screaming satire I want, I’ll get it from places where people can write not only in passable English but delightfully, such as Jon Swift’s blog or The Onion.
I could be wrong, but what difference does it make? I can’t be any more asea as a social commentator than Kirk Cameron is as an evolutionary biologist.