Friday, January 13, 2006

James Wolcott...

I haven't been over to Wolcott's site lately. Wolcott's complaining about Pajamas media, and frankly I thought all the bloggers complaining about Pajamas media was a tempest in a teapot- who cares about them anyway? They're not like they're the Huffington Post, which has the difference of bringing to the blogosphere famous celebrities just to confirm the fact that your opinion's probably better than theirs - whatever the position in political hyperspace in which you find yourself. They also do have that CIA guy and that militant atheist guy... but I digress.

Do wish Wolcott still had a trackback...

Anyway, the above link is simply great writing.

I don't do "fisking," because I refuse to take in vain the name of that brave, outspoken, iconoclastic journalist Robert Fisk. But I will offer a few notes.

1) Actually my head would be a delightful place to visit. So much going on, so many streaking comets of enlightment. I should charge admission so that everyone could enjoy my thoughts.

2) The "Earl Grey pinkie" wheeze at humor by Fumento is evidence of the envy taking tiny bites out of his brain. Two nights ago I attended Vanity Fair's belated New Year's dinner, a joyous bash (imagine one of the livelier orgies in Fellini's Satryicon, multiply by three, and subtract two eunuchs and a retired gladiator, and you have the general atmosphere), which brought my colleagues Christopher Hitchens, Nick Tosches, Annie Lebowitz, Michael Woolf, and so many others under the same pulsating ceiling. Does anyone in their right mind picture Hitchens or Tosches sipping Earl Gray under Graydon's watchful eye and fearing they might spill a drop? I understand Fumento's jealousy of Vanity Fair. Like so many rancorous rightwing underachievers, he resents a magazine--any magazine--that is successful on its own and carries actual advertising rather than being bankrolled by some billionaire madman or non-profit think tank itself dependent on corporate slush funds.

3) I was an opponent of the Iraq War as soon as I understood what the neoconservatives were up to and heard the scaremongering exaggerations and began to fear an invasion and occupation would result in a tragic debacle, and I see no reason to revise my opposition, considering the mess the Bush administration has made and the misery it's caused.

Fumento: "[H]aving stirred up the readership at Little Green Footballs, he refers to them not as a hornet's nest or some such but rather a 'disorganized Nuremberg Rally.' Apparently nobody informed him that labeling your critics Nazis went out of fashion at about the same time as narrow neck ties."

Me: Actually, what's as dated as Maynard G. Krebs' goatee is calling me or anyone else a "defeat-nik," or any other kind of "nik." I thought this went out with Joe Pyne, Al Capp, and other Sixties relics. Fumento probably thinks campus protesters still wear love beads and practice "free love."

In a puzzling accusation, Fumento writes, "Wolcott would not acknowledge a single decapitation in Iraq." Which makes it sound as if I took some defiant stand. I know there have been multiple beheadings in Iraq that have been broadcast on Al-Jazeera and streamed over the internet; everyone knows that. I was using "Daniel Pearl" as shorthand because he is the most famous representative example of this horror, and the name the warbloggers themselves most frequently cite. Relatedly, I called Daniel Pipes a patronizing little shit because a) he is, and b) he set himself up as a higher authority than Pearl's own father in judging the sincerity of Muhammed Ali's condolences.

Fumento: "If his objection is that the decapitation stuff seems a bit crude, perhaps it's because sawing off a living person's head is also a bit crude. In addition to showing the monstrousness of the enemy, what Wolcott's 'headhunters' are saying is: 'I'll bet you wouldn't like it if this were done to you' and chances are Wolcott wouldn't, insofar as it might interfere with his next wine-and-cheese party at the Ritz."

Me: There is no Ritz in New York. There are Ritz-Carlton hotels, but no one but a rube would refer to any of them as "the Ritz."...

Yeah, I still say, if they don't like being called Nazis, Brownshirts, and fascists, it's time they stopped acting like them.

It's pretty simple actually.

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