Thursday, December 18, 2003

How stupid can you get? This past January, Charles Pierce wrote a profile of Ted Kennedy for the Boston Globe Magazine that included a passage so mean it took my breath away. It still does. Here it is:

That's how you survive what he's survived. That's how you move forward, one step after another, even though your name is Edward Moore Kennedy. You work, always, as though your name were Edward Moore. If she had lived, Mary Jo Kopechne would be 62 years old. Through his tireless work as a legislator, Edward Kennedy would have brought comfort to her in her old age.

Yet, as I wrote at the time, some people - especially conservatives - just didn't get it. James Taranto, who writes the "Best of the Web" column for the Wall Street Journal's, correctly called it "pure poison." But others, including the stunningly overrated Mark Steyn, actually thought Pierce was absolving Kennedy for his criminally negligent conduct in the death of Mary Jo Kopechne.

And so it goes. A little while ago I learned that the Media Research Center, an organization that documents so-called liberal bias, had awarded Pierce its "Quote of the Year." First place! No explanation is offered, but, for connoisseurs of the MRC, none is needed. Obviously Pierce is being singled out for an extreme act of liberal woolly-headedness - for daring to suggest something so stupid and offensive as the notion that Kennedy's liberal deeds somehow offset what he failed to do that day at Chappaquiddick.

Gah! As if!

The MRC no doubt got that idea from idiot boy Bernard Goldberg's new book, Arrogance: Rescuing America from the Media Elite. I haven't seen it (lest you think that means I'm not entitled to insult him, be assured I've read his first comic book); but Pierce recently wrote during a guest turn on Altercation (no direct link available) that Goldberg, too, thought Pierce was trying to say something nice about Ted Kennedy.

Good grief. Conservatives love to complain about the state of public education. Yet, clearly, it is they who can't read.

New in this week's Phoenix. George W. Bush has a new running mate: Saddam Hussein. And that's going to cause a whole heap of trouble for the Democrats.

(Note to Bernie Goldberg and the Media Research Center: I'm not actually trying to make people think that Saddam is going to replace Dick Cheney on the Republican ticket, or that Bush secretly likes Saddam, or anything like that. Okay?)

Also, who was Robert Bartley?

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