Back in the 1980s, the Wall Street Journal editorial page's most effective and devastating right-wing columnist was left-wing nut-boy Alexander Cockburn: everyone (well, almost everyone) reading his columns would think, "If that's the left, I belong on the right."
Now comes the Washington Post pulling the same trick: hiring Ben Domenech--a man with no policy or analytic or reportorial qualifications save a couple years as a right-wing speechwriter, an unarmed man in a battle of wits--to be its right-wing weblogger. It's funny:
Red America: Since the election of 1992, the extreme political left has fought a losing battle. Their views on the economy, marriage, abortion, guns, the death penalty, health care, welfare, taxes, and a dozen other major domestic policy issues have been exposed as unpopular, unmarketable and unquestioned losers at the ballot box.... [T]he mainstream media continues to treat red state Americans as pachyderms in the mist - an alien and off-kilter group of suburbanite churchgoers about which little is known, and whose natural habitat is a discomforting place for even the most hardened reporter from the New York Times.
During the discussions about the launch of this new blog, the good folks at washingtonpost.com spent far too much time in sessions with markers and whiteboard, trying to settle on a name for the column. The suggestions were all over the map - but one suggestion provided a reminder of the sociopolitical divide in this country. "What about 'Red Dawn'?" said one helpful editor.
"Well, only if you want to make people think it was a gun blog," I said, to puzzled faces.
"Red Dawn? You must know it - the greatest pro-gun movie ever? I mean, they actually show the jackbooted communist thugs prying the guns from cold dead hands."
Any red-blooded American conservative, even those who hold a dim view of Patrick Swayze's acting "talent," knows a Red Dawn reference. For all the talk of left wing cultural political correctness, the right has such things, too (DO shop at Wal-Mart, DON'T buy gas from Citgo). But in the progressive halls of the mainstream media, such things prompt little or no recognition. For the MSM, Dan Rather is just another TV anchor, France is just another country and Red Dawn is just another cheesy throwaway Sunday afternoon movie...
Hate to break it to you, Ben, but "Red Dawn" is just another cheesy throwaway Sunday afternoon movie--and one that's not nearly as visually interesting as "Dirty Dancing." "Red Dawn" is currently #2883 with a bullet among amazon DVDs, behind such wonders of the cinematic art as "Don Knotts 4 Movie Reluctant Hero Pack (The Ghost And Mr. Chicken / The Reluctant Astronaut / The Shakiest Gun In The West / The Love God?)," "Simple Life 3 - The Interns," and "Arrested Development--Season 2."
This is going to be fun.