Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunday Question for Conservatives

It's gonna be the Johnny Rotten question: Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

(Hey, it's new continuing feature!  Lots of interesting and thoughtful comments last week, so I'm trying again).

At least a couple of liberal bloggers reacted to the various recent miniscandals by noting that conservatives talk show hosts and other opinion leaders basically treat their listeners/readers pretty badly.  Here's TAP's Mori Dinauer: "Sometimes I wonder if the conservative media has more contempt for liberals or for the intelligence of its followers."  I think there's a lot of truth to that.  Speaking as someone who doesn't by any means think that conservatives are stupid or foolish or think that most conservatives have "authoritarian personalities" that predispose them to be sheep, I really don't know why conservative movement politics these days seems to attract so many snake-oil salesmen such as Newt Gingrich or Andrew Breitbart

So, the question: ever get the feeling you've been cheated?  Or, perhaps, speaking to intelligent conservatives who presumably see through the charlatans: what do you make of all of this?  How do you explain, or how do you think about, the evident success of so many snake-oil salesmen on your side of the aisle?


  1. I first noticed that because I subscribe to emails. I kept getting all these "get-rich-quick" schemes and concluded Considers Its Readers Gullible Idiots and then later, that they clearly still did. I wrote this at the time:

    >One thing that puzzles me is the sheer number and seeming shady-ness of the “investment opportunities” that TownHall sends out. You have to wonder what they think of their audience as they send out these quasi-scamming get-rich schemes every week. It makes you look at their political posts – which likewise seem to be geared towards gullible idiots – a bit differently. I mean – if you’re willing to mislead your readers, who have trusted you with their email address, with shady get-rich quick schemes offering “exclusive information” (sent out to millions no doubt) – and your readers put up with it – it creates a rather odd dynamic. I can’t imagine a liberal site getting away with any similar.

    Anyway...long time reader of your blog, first time commenter...

  2. "I really don't know why conservative movement politics these days seems to attract so many snake-oil salesmen such as Newt Gingrich or Andrew Breitbart. "

    Because that is what millions of people want to hear. There are plenty of more intelligent people on the right out there but they do not get the audience of people like Breibert. The talk radio crowd does not care to discuss policy details much. They are more interested in attacking the left. I think Levin is giving his listeners what he thinks they want.

    "ever get the feeling you've been cheated?"

    The Sherrod affair does somewhat. Racial matters like affirmative action/diversity programs is an area I would like to be debated more. I also think the public does not like how these programs operate in practice. There are good critics of these programs like Steve Sailor's articles on the Ricci case but they don't get the attention that Breibart does. Breibart is giving a bad reputation to diversity program critics.

    I am happy that James Webb has written a good piece about it last week.

  3. "Breibart is giving a bad reputation to diversity program critics," you say, but you label the race hustler Steve Sailor as a "good critic?" His long history of pseudo-academic racism should add him to the charlatan list.

  4. Wow. Crickets... No charlatans on the right, apparently.

  5. I do wonder whether there would have been more responses had I phrased it the way I did the liberal question (who do you think is a charlatan, as opposed to how to you feel about all the charlatans).


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