Things I’m Supposed To Love, But Can’t Stand: Ideological Excess

Don’t get me wrong.  I have nothing against being wealthy.  In fact, all I really want is the chance to prove that money can’t make me happy.

But maybe it’s because I grew up one generation removed from the Dust Bowl in a place where wealth was something people kinda kept to themselves.  Perhaps it’s all the baggage of my obsessively-modest Scandinavian anscestory.  It might be that family life on a single middle-class income doesn’t allow for much in the way of excess.

But I’ve never much cared for conspicuous consumption.  And I suspect that even if Premiere Radio hired me to replace Limbaugh in 2016 (which would be a swell idea, if any Premiere execs are reading this!), I wouldn’t change a whole lot.

And by the opposite token, while I do like the environment (especially on weekends like thsi past one in the Twin Cities), the environmental movement is pretty much out of control in this country; the Global Warming scam is only the latest of the con games they’ve played to try to wrest control of society from  the democratic process (for a detailed chronology of the various scams, just look up Paul Ehrlich’s bibliography).   I believe mankind would have to work very hard indeed to destroy the environment.

But that doesn’t mean he should try.

In recent years, conservatives have found some wry ways to stick fingers in the eyes of their liberal nemeses.  I participate (enthusiastically) in things like National Ammo Day, the Tea Parties, and of course Talk Radio (which proves every day that liberals only care about the First Amendment when it comes to saying naughty things and waving ones’ privates in public).

And so I get the spirit behind things like “Carbon Belch Day“, and groups like “Minnesotans For Global Warming” – with a nudge and a wink.

But I get the impression that there are more than a few conservatives who miss the “nudge and a wink” bit.

Look – wealth is good.  Indeed, in the long run wealth, spread over the world, is the only thing mankind can do that will positively affect the environment.  Remember forty years ago, when the same crowd of people who are ramming “Global Warming” down everyone’s throat were doing the same thing with “overpopulation”  (I do.  It gave me nightmares when I was seven years old), and demanded the same sort of response (global government action)?  And yet the only thing that actually slows population growth is prosperity; when people don’t need to have kids to ensure their own survival, they have fewer of them.  Likewise – even if we assume that mankind does have an effect on global temperature, it is only generalized prosperity that will prompt the parts of the world that are doing the actual polluting (China and India) to worry more about smog and less about feeding their populations.

Still – and I’m going to take a moment to enforce my theocratic constructs on you – God does ask us all to be good stewards of His creation.  When you’re out hunting, not only should one not slaughter wantonly (state fish and game rules notwithstanding), but one should dispose of their beer cans and jerky wrappers properly.  Likewise, just because one can wreck something, doesn’t mean one should wreck something (a lesson that’s hard to get across to teenagers, but should be quite this hard for adults).

I talked with one “conservative” a few years ago who said it was every conservative’s duty to buy a Hummer, keep their homes at a constant 68 degrees, and create as much trash as possible.

I demurred – not so much because any of them “cause global warming” as…:

It’s expensive as hell, and when it comes to money, I put the “Conserve” into “Conservative”; Hummers are a lot of money that I’d much rather spend on other things. I don’t even have AC; at any rate,the free market has a way of moderating this sort of behavior, at least for me; it’s expensive as hell.

And excuse me but, um, why?  I mean, if spending money and time for the hell of it brings you joy, then knock yourself out, I guess, but I never quite got it.  I’m not going to tell you not  to do it, but it really has less to do with politics than with finding a high-sounding justification for “gluttony”, in the “seven deadly sins” sense of the term.  And naturally, since we have free will, you have every right to be a glutton.  Just tread carefully when trying to ennoble it with some higher purpose it doesn’t deserve.

After 9/11, as the US got ready to go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq,the left launched any number of deeply stupid symbolic protests; “Naked Unicyclists for Peace” and the like.  As if unicycling naked – by any definition more of a narcissistic attention-getting exercise than an actual political act of any use – was somehow raised to a form of high political purpose by tacking “…for Peace” onto the end of it.  In other words, it falsely ennobled narcissism and self-centeredness (with, usually, hilarious-yet-nauseating results).

So in all honesty, what makes gluttony-dressed-up-as-politics any better (other than “not having ageing ex-hippies riding unicycles in the nude, of course)?

82 thoughts on “Things I’m Supposed To Love, But Can’t Stand: Ideological Excess

  1. Kermit said: “Well I recall many months of steady growth over several years. Hundreds of thousands of jobs being added, month after month.”

    1,001 and counting…

  2. 1,001 and counting…
    Congratulations! You got the comma in the right place this time.

  3. This chart:
    Shows non-farm employment increased from 132,530,000 in Feb 2001, to 138,152,000 in July of 2007.
    I think Flash reads too many Union newsletters or something. They use weird economic measures in order to buttress an ideological argument that they are making.
    Simple common sense should tell you, Flash, that Mexicans were flowing over the border, S to N, from 2001 until sometime last year. They must have been working somewhere. It’s a lot cheaper to live without a job in Mexico than it is in the US.

  4. Hmm. 5 million jobs more over a six year period. And the slump started when Nancy and Harry took control of Congress. Just more wingnut fantasy. Damn the numbers, full speed ahead on the ideological excess!

  5. This Bush v. Obama argument assumes (at least on the part of Flash) that fiscal conservatives count G.W. among our ranks.

    We don’t (for the thousandth time).

    Got it?

    Bush spent money like a typical liberal. Obama is no typical liberal. He has done more damage (albeit in concert with Congress) to our country’s financial position in a few months than any other President has done in two full terms.

  6. I agree with JRoosh. One of the reasons I am _not_ a registered republican is that it implies that you have signed on to the party’s agenda. Often this agenda is other than conservative.
    It seems unconscionable to me that the government (or the party in charge of it, at the moment) can whine that we need money for this-and-that while they shovel dollars into pork. A hundred million dollars is small change to the federal government these days. A hundred million bucks could give 1,000 poor students gold-plated scholarships to the Ivy League college of their choice.

  7. I’ve gotten the Martin Mull comparison before.

    My numbers, as linked, come from the Department of Labor. You go ahead with your EconoMagic, works well for ya.

  8. I guess one of the reasons I’m not a fan of the “buy a Hummer for freedom!” crowd is because it gets too close to conceptual artists painting with their butts (please don’t GIS) to examine the relationship between the artist and their instrument. It’s not about art, it’s about the “look at meeee!!” thinking that fuels this type of stuff. It’s the same thing that PZ Myers does to make up for being stuck in a state school in the sticks by jumping up and down and making sure he gets noticed more than what he believes. I think desecrating a communion wafer is on par with a Carbon belch day. Both seem like stuff a 9 year old does because it annoys their teacher.

  9. Flash, your numbers and mine are the same. The difference is in time frames. Your ppt shows a net job loss throughout 2003/2004, then a recovery. Economagic (or whatever it’s called) uses the same source for its numbers but carries them through 2008.
    You’ve already lost on your ‘Bush’s tax cuts robbed the federal government coffers of revenue’ deal. You are revealing yourself as someone who calls himself a moderate, but really just wants to spend the money other people have earned with their labor. In other words, a typical liberal. Do you really want to continue this?

  10. Angryclown fired his girl for the typo, Kermie. And his research staff, who failed to update the bio of the legendary Charles Rocket have been sacked! (Please keep me abreast of any career moves for Brad Hall or Denny Dillion, won’t you?) Yet you still live in a bizarre wingnut dreamworld in which elections are controlled by a scary foreign currency trader and Bestest President in the World Bush kept the economy growing year after year after year, world without end, amen.

    Say, did New Orleans flood in Kermie world too, or do you just think of Hurricane Katrina as the day gumdrops rained from the sky as Louis Armstrong sang “What a Wonderful World”?

  11. Terry, the point of the numbers games was Kermit’s comment:

    “Six years of steady job growth ”

    I think we both agree that was a false statement.

  12. It’s funny to read two commenters reading from the Gospel of Anti-Bush while contantly accusing others of fantasy. Anything to avoid discussion of our current president or the topic at hand, I suppose. *shrug*

  13. Yes Clownie, New Orleans flooded and two Democrats, Nagin and Blanco botched it horribly.
    But you keep blaming Bush. You are a one note symphony after all.

  14. The irony to me is Shot in the Onion is the definition of Ideological Excess and it is laughable for ‘mitch’ to even attempt to claim it is a thing he is ‘Supposed To Love, But Can’t Stand’ when SitO wouldn’t exist without it.


  15. Shot in the Onion is the definition of Ideological Excess

    Er, OK. I’ll bite. What is “excessive” about writing a blog?

    This oughtta be interesting.

  16. I think we both agree that was a false statement.
    Job losses after 9/11 were horrible, esp. in the tourism/leisure business. I’m on record as saying that I think all US economic growth, post dot-com bust, has been an illusion. It was all based on inflated real estate.
    The difference between you and I, Flash, is that I don’t blame Bush & the GOP for this. Globalization destroys high paying jobs, and that’s a feature, not a bug, so it’s hard to fix. The dems have been running the show in Washington since 2006. They haven’t had any more luck in making our economy grow than Bush did.


    Aw, Flash. Even after the 1,594,471st time you throw out that phrase, it just doesn’t get old!!

    And the constant references to ‘mitch’??? Pure comedy gold!!!

  18. Flash is refering to visits and comments from Peev. This place wouldn’t be ANYTHING without his appearances.

  19. Speaking of Peev, anyone think he’s down at the Staples Center in L.A. right now, waving a Bic lighter?

  20. “lies like a fucking dog.” – Flush

    Do you allow that language on your blog Flush?

    Once again you have shown us how much of a hypocrite you really are, Flush.

    Moderate? Centrist? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

    Grace the moonbat is a bit left of Flush.

  21. Make sure to get the comma in the right place, Kevin. And don’t sign it Charles Rocket this time.

  22. Hahahahaha! Still smarting over that George Soros spanking you got from Angryclown, eh Kerm?

  23. OK. I”ve asked once nicely. I’ll ask once more, nicely.

    Please take the interpersonal sniping and the nastiness elsewhere.


  24. Come on Mitch, just one more, like the threats on Flushblog to question your employer and get you fired!!!! Yes, that does happen on Flush’s blog.

    “lies like a fucking dog.” – Flush
    Do you allow that language on your blog Flush?
    Back on topic:
    I agree, Mitch, I am not a so much onboard with the “Carbon Belch Day“, and groups like “Minnesotans For Global Warming” – even with with a nudge and a wink… but it is fun to jerk loony liberal chains… nothing personal flush/peeve/DG…

    As an avid snowmobiler; I am against global warming.

  25. K-Rod says:
    “but it is fun to jerk loony liberal chains… nothing personal flush/peeve/DG…”

    Yeah, but you can be nice too. Thanks for the kind and encouraging words over on Penigma today.

    July 7th, 2009 at 10:13 am
    (flash says:)”Shot in the Onion is the definition of Ideological Excess”
    Mitch Berg Says:
    “Er, OK. I’ll bite. What is “excessive” about writing a blog?”
    This oughtta be interesting.

    A small point; idealogy can be more or less extreme; excessive, not as appropriate a term.

    As to what is excessive about writing a blog?

    That it can involve you in reading and writing…to an excessive degree in terms of time and effort, and perhaps passion? That it can generate more than 80 comments on the subject of ‘things I’m supposed to love… ‘?

  26. Thanks, DG, keep up the good work. But let’s keep that “nice” stuff to a whisper, wouldn’t want to change hypocrite Flush’s premisconceptions.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.