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About That “Liberal” Sense of Humour…

Just to be clear at the outset, the “Liberal” in the title doesn’t necessarily just refer to the Liberal Party of Canada, although it has to be said that they’re not exactly a barrel of monkeys these days. Okay, maybe that wasn’t the best figure of speech, all considered, but you know what I mean.

It’s a well known fact that “conservatives” aren’t funny. This is something that my more learned friends have assured me can be scientifically demonstrated, if it only it were possible to determine exactly what the nature of this mysterious “conservative” creature might be in the first place so that potential test subjects could be reliably identified. It seems differences of opinion vary widely on the matter. So, we have a bit of a sticky problem actually proving this to be the case, although we’re confident in our bones that it must be so given the mountains of anecdotal evidence at hand seeming to confirm this assertion. As just one example, take the attempted comedy stylings of two noted “conservative” thinkers (hillbilly heroin addict Rush Limbaugh and “perfected Jewess” Ann Coulter) on Fox’s late, unlamented and tragically unfunny “Half Hour News Hour” show. Even sentient right-wingers agreed their performances were painfully awkward, juvenile and mean-spirited. Imagine!

But I want to challenge that accepted tenet of faith a little, or at least attempt to balance off the smug self-righteousness of the Left on this point by drawing your attention to the travails of kindred soul-mate Jon Swift in his recent attempts to lend some assistance to the good but “misguided” folks at The Democratic Daily who wanted to run an ad whose purpose was to generate traffic for a group of smaller liberal blogs. Being the magnanimous conservative that he is, Jon not only acceded to the request, but did a lot more; embellishing the ad with an eye-catching graphic. To be specific, one of the delightful LOLcats creations from his scathing piece a while back on The Doughy Pantload’s new book Liberal Fascism. The picture in question featured a “liberal fascist cat in full Nazi regalia” captioned with the words “I is a librul.” (Just as an aside, there is actually an entire site devoted to cats that resemble Adolph Hitler. Really. They call them “kitlers.” How cute.)

The revamped ad was a big hit with the folks at TDD and even Markos at Daily Kos agreed to run it. Somewhat disingenuously, Jon goes on to say: “I was sure it would be very popular with the readers of the Daily Kos, who are renowned for their great senses of humor and their remarkable ability to laugh at themselves. Unfortunately, I was mistaken.” The ensuing storm of righteous indignation, offended sensibilities, and utter cluelessness, is absolutely hilarious. Not intentionally so, but high comedy nonetheless.

Almost as soon as the ad began running a Kossack named CMFoster began a campaign to have the ad removed entirely. “All I am asking is that for once we get rid of the offensive material and make the advertiser realize they need to be more responsible for the content they place on this or any other site. To make a cat look like Hitler just make Liberals look worse than we are sometimes already portrayed to be,” wrote CMFoster. He was soon joined by a Kossack named Man is 5, who wrote, “Ummm — what the hell is that ‘Support Liberal Blogs’ ad on the front page? Did you just not notice that the cat looks like Hitler? Am I missing something here? Seems to me Hitler was a fairly conservative individual. And I’m not so sure that promoting liberal blogs with his image, even in adorable kitty form, is such a good idea. What concepts did the client reject?” You might think that they would be in favor of supporting small liberal blogs or that they might have had better causes to put their energy into but instead they decided to hound poor Ms. Leavey, who put a lot of very hard work into this campaign, until she decided that she had no other recourse than to remove the offending graphic. Eventually, she replaced it with another, less provocative picture, my “Librul Treehugger” LOLcat and the Kossacks turned their attention to more pressing matters like whether the New Hampshire primary was rigged by Hillary Clinton and Diebold.

There’s a moral to be had there about generalizing over much, I suppose. On the other hand, if you read the rest of Jon’s piece — and I’d urge you to do so — it becomes abundantly clear that while the Right may not have an absolute monopoly on being utterly humourless, they’re certainly market leaders in this particular field and charging ahead all the time. This is evidenced by the catastrophically dopey reactions of Ron Paul supporters to Swift’s speculative doubts about the actual existence of “Ron Paul” owing to the fact of having never heard of him until recently and that he’s never mentioned by the media. Check it out. You’ll be glad you did.

3 comments to About That “Liberal” Sense of Humour…

  • Read the comments A Tad Late, post by Scott. You of all people will see the humour in the fact that I am the stereotype for your post.

    I like Martin Rayner much better than Red Tory. I have been wanting to blog to improve myself and get new ideas, so far it has been a failure.

    "There is always hope when people are forced to listen to both sides; it is when they attend only to one that errors harden into prejudices, and truth itself ceases to have the effect of truth, by being exaggerated into falsehood." John Stuart Mill

    When I comment don’t just bash me, help me grow.

  • On a semi-related note to this post, it seems that Jon got "Swiftboated" by the folks at Google for his original  posting on Jonah Goldberg’s hilarious new book "Liberal Fascism"  because of a purported "Google-bomb" gone awry.  It’s kind of funny, but there’s a somewhat serious point associated with the incident as well. Read more, as they say.  

  • I won’t trouble Scott with an update on this, but I just went and checked out the Kos Poll to have the “Hitler Kittie Ad” removed and the vote was actually 51% in favour of keeping it, but still sweet, amiable liberal that she is, Pamela caved to the pressure and removed it saying, somewhat implausibly, in an email to the petitioner: “I didn’t even realize when I added it what the kitty had on. “ Yeah, right. Totally missed that iron cross, Wehrmacht cap and distinctive Hitler mustache. “Went straight by me… Honest!” Heh.

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