Saturday, March 17, 2012

Comedy: The Last Refuge of a Scoundrel?

The fallout continues from Rush Limbaugh's ill considered verbal attack on contraception activist Sandra Fluke.

After the expected critiques from the left, conservative commentators pushed back by pointing out the double standard that governs left wing attacks on conservative women. At her website,  Michelle Malkin reflected on some of her own experiences and mentioned other noteworthy examples of liberal misogyny.  And in a somewhat surprising reaction, liberal commentator Kristen Powers over at The Daily Beast reviewed similar attacks on conservative women. The most egregious offender from the left seems to be Bill Maher.

Defenders of liberal misogyny deflect criticism by attempting to draw distinctions between Limbaugh and Maher. Limbaugh, they say, is a conservative  operative or de facto head of the Republican Party, while Bill Maher is only a comedian. Bill Maher himself takes up this defence. He claims that he is a comedian dealing with public figures and that Limbaugh attacked a "civilian."

Of course, all of this is nonsense. Fluke is no longer a civilian. She is a veteran volunteer soldier in the "culture wars." In addition, Limbaugh does not lead the Republican Party in any sense of the word. That's just another example of the "paranoid style" of politics from the left that imagines that Republicans do not think for themselves and that  Limbaugh or the Koch brothers are behind the scenes pulling all of the strings. Finally, what difference does is make to say one is a comedian? Does being an entertainer exclude one from accountability for words one uses?  I am still searching for how Maher's  premise relates to the conclusion that he can say anything he wants.

Rush Limbaugh himself admits he is an entertainer. So Rush's cases is not all that different. He and Maher are comedians and neither are very funny.

Is comedy now, "the last refuge of a scoundrel?"


CW said...

Good post, RightDetour

Rush did a stupid and frankly amateurish thing by calling Fluke the names he did. I was pretty angry with him because it seemed he distracted the country from a great opportunity to see liberalism on parade. Before he opened his mouth I think people from across the spectrum were astonished at this gal’s nerve to “testify” with a smug smile on her face about how the rest of the country needs to be footing the bill for her birth control. But Rush changed the subject before the outrage could sink in.

That said, how funny is it that the libs exposed themselves for what hypocrites they are by swooping in for the kill on Rush only to be reminded of the abundance of vile woman-bashing that passes for “comedy” on the Left? It truly shows what cocoons they all live in that they are so oblivious to their own hypocrisy.

As for the comedian excuse, of course they all know how laughable that it. But it doesn’t matter because liberals don’t need to be believable. They just need to stick together.

RightDetour said...

Thank you CW.

I did not even think about unintended consequences of Rush's remarks that you note. His remarks certainly overshadowed the issue at hand.(Because I am not a fan of Rush, I just thought that it was simply a another case of Rush being Rush.)

As to liberals sticking together, I believe it is the fact that as long as liberals close ranks around sexuality and its related issues (especially abortion), they not only tolerate but relish each other's egregiously sexist comments about conservative women.

RightDetour said...

For some examples of leftist feminist rage, see this article about the rise of conservative women in the tea party and the challenge they offer to traditional liberal feminism.