By the Books
By: Thomas Lindaman
One of the characteristics of a faux liberal is that you think youâ€™re a lot smarter than you actually are, but that your political affiliation makes you morally and intellectually superior to everyone else. And they areâ€¦until they go out into public amongst real people who donâ€™t nod their heads at everything they say like a Barry Bonds bobble-head doll during a 6.2 on the Richter Scale.
But that doesnâ€™t stop the faux left from â€œprovingâ€ how smart they are. A recent Associated Press-Ipsos poll shows that people who consider themselves to be liberal read more books than conservatives. And who does the Associated Press quote first in their story? Former Democrat Representative from Colorado and current president of the American Association of Publishers, Pat Schroeder.
The Karl Roves of the world have built a generation that just wants a couple slogans: â€œNo, don’t raise my taxes, no new taxes.” It’s pretty hard to write a book saying, â€œNo new taxes, no new taxes, no new taxesâ€ on every page.
Schroederâ€™s point, much like her House career, falls short of relevance. I know itâ€™s cool to mention Karl Rove when attacking everything from the war in Iraq to having to pay an extra quarter for a Super Duper Quadruple Mocha Latte from Starbucks, but Rove didnâ€™t have anything to do with the number of books liberals and conservatives read. If he did, wouldnâ€™t you think heâ€™d make it so conservatives read more books than liberals?
The whole notion behind the poll is silly to begin with. Does it really matter in the grand scheme of things that liberals read more books than conservatives? Not really, and itâ€™s not really explained in the poll or in the resulting story as to why thereâ€™s a difference. Is it because liberals are unemployed, so they have more time to read? Is it because conservatives are tackling books like The Reagan Diaries while liberals are getting through the ever-so-tricky The Cat In The Hat? We donâ€™t
And hereâ€™s the twist. Reading books doesnâ€™t make you smarter. True intelligence comes from the application of knowledge gained, whether it be from life for from the pages of a book. Then, it becomes a matter of testing that knowledge against changing circumstances.
This is where the faux left so often falls flat. Take global warming for example. Once Al Gore talked about the â€œfragile ecosystem,â€ the faux left repeated it without asking essential questions. When Al Gore talked about the â€œhockey stickâ€ model of warming, the faux left talked about it non-stop. When Al Gore came out with â€œAn Inconvenient Truth,â€ the faux left fell asleep. After all, it is Al Gore weâ€™re talking about here.
Yet, as scientists who actually do research came out and said Gore was wrong, Gore and the faux left swung into action and proclaimed the people who disagreed with them â€œglobal warming deniersâ€ and proclaimed â€œthe debate is over.â€ Another sign of intelligence is being able to intelligently debate those who disagree with you, letting the strength of your arguments win the debate. Last time I checked, declaring â€œthe debate is overâ€ when itâ€™s still going on isnâ€™t in the Lincoln-Douglas rules.
At its heart, the AP-Ipsos poll is an attempt to shore up liberal spirits, and letâ€™s face it, after the past few months, they need it. Air America is continuing to tank like Michael Dukakis. Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid have taken Congress in a new direction: down. And when you consider the great white hope of your movement is Cindy Sheehan, itâ€™s a wonder that we havenâ€™t had a major Prozac shortage in this country. So, they need something to help boost their spirits. And itâ€™s the Associated
Press to the rescue!
Unfortunately for the faux left, the poll in question only affirms what they already believe about themselves without actually establishing that their beliefs are founded in reality. Of course, thatâ€™s never stopped them before, but in this case itâ€™s a serious problem because it enables their addition to themselves. The first step to beating any addiction is to admit you have a problem, and you guys have a serious problem if youâ€™re buoyed by a poll that shows you read more books than
But judging from Pat Schroederâ€™s comments, it doesnâ€™t appear as though theyâ€™re ready to take the first of the 12 steps they need to beat their addiction. Before I go, I did want to take issue with her comment about conservative writers merely repeating slogans. Thatâ€™s intellectual elitism at its finest, but itâ€™s absolutely not true. Conservative writers donâ€™t need to rely on slogans to make their points.
Thomas Lindaman is a Staff Writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. and NewsBull.com. The New Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets. He is also Publisher of CommonConservative.com.
New Media Alliance Television (www.nmatv.com)