Saturday, June 25, 2005

Geese & Guttersnipes: some apologies just aren't worth it

Remember when you were a kid and some other kid said or did something less than nice to you (which was bad enough) and then his mom or dad made matters worse by dragging the kid over to apologize to you? Remember how you pretty much knew the kid was lying on both counts when (s)he said "I'm Sorry, it won't happen again"? Amanda, Norbiz & The other Jew must remember these experiences as well, because they think asking for an apology from Karl Rove for, well, being Karl Rove is a bad idea. The more I think about it, the more I agree with them.

The conservatives (Rep leadership, conservapundits and the "I love my neighbors so I can point my finger and stand in judgement of them (because I'm allowed to choose which scripture is accurate and holy) Christianacists" absolutely love to watch the liberals foam and demand apologies in a bad imitation of themselves. Their adoration of this exercise is based on one well known fact: What is good for the Republican Goose is not good for the Democrat Gander. Try as they might, Democrats just cannot get away with that behavior or demands for retractions/apologies for Republican partisan guttersniping no matter how incendiary and dangerous the statment was. The more the Democrats try to get away with decidedly Republican behavior, the more they resemble a Dave Grohl imitation of Britney Spears (which might bring a smile to some of our faces) or, worse yet, a Madonna attempt at acting.

We see it time & time again: someone from the "Religious Right", Republican Leadership and/or one of those talking heads incapable of a statement emanating from anywhere but the right side of their mouth (or a southern orifice) says something that is at best inane, at worst dangerous and always incendiary followed by liberals heightening their orgasm by responding and/or demanding an apology. The only thing the right wing might enjoy as much is the the foam they whip up when a liberal makes a statement of dissent/criticism (even a credible one) especially since they can occasionally achieve a multiple by pointing out they own G-d and that liberals are a bunch of pansy-lovin' pagans who must capitulate to the rules of those bound for Heaven despite the pre-determined destination of all liberals to Hell.

The media, of course, plays into the cat-fights because they helped create this environment when they dumbed down what used to be considered NEWS coverage and journalism into ratings-grabbing middle-brow Infotainment (middle-brow because the male anchors still do the shirt and tie thing and the women don't show bare midrifs or belly rings). These all too frequent to be even marginally entertaining distractions also help main stream media types avoid focusing on headier issues like those raised by DSM and supplementary documents; why are troops are further endangered by [still] being ill-equipped; the fact that the US has finally admitted to torturing prisoners at US detention centers in Iraq, Afghanistan and at Gitmo; and some important domestic issues as well. I always thought the folks doing the fluff pieces were jealous of the news guys, I guess I was wrong, maybe they really just want to write for the next Aaron Spelling jiggle-a-thon. . .

In any regard, insincere apologies/retractions are a waste of time and effort. Anyone who faces the "gaper delay" while trying to get somewhere knows its sole utility is to prevent a driver from getting to his/her destination and this country desparately needs to start focusing on the road instead of inhaling the exhaust. In order to do so, I suggest that in the face of the next stupid yet incendiary Repug statement (and mark my words, there will be another one), Democratic leadership respond with a curt comment along the lines of the following:

"The statement was inappropriate, inaccurate and something we'd expect from an adolescencent trying control his junior high classmates. At this point, we're tired of these sophomoric shenanigans and think it best if government officials focused on running the country and the media focused on legitimate news. Now if you'll excuse me, I have work to do."

Edit 25Jun04 11:14 - Count Ron Jr. among those who agree with the lack of utility of political apologies and credit him for the sheer beauty of stating the obvious.
"This Administration’s dishonesty is matched only but its incompetence. Memo to the Democrats: Pointing that out doesn’t require an apology."

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