The Pleasures of Not Reading George Will

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In Remus’ posting below, he’s fairly apoplectic over the Washington Post’s backing of George Will’s specious column on global warming.*  I’ve only tangentially followed the story, as I haven’t read George Will in over twenty years.  Ol’ George has this reputation as being the thinking man’s conservative, but that’s only because he’s very intelligent and articulate.  He is not, nor ever has been, thoughtful.  (Except about baseball.  I have to admit back when I got a daily paper I would check to see if his column was about baseball before I ignored it.)  What he is, is an intelligent and well articulated hack.  He is Truthy.  He purveys BS in the Frankfurt sense – words and facts marshalled to defend a pre-existing position with complete indifference to their truth, accuracy or relevancy.

Normally I ignore Will and most blog posts about him.  The reason this one bubbled to my consciousness is the fact that the Post backed him.  Remus hit the nail right on the head here, because that is just another downward step in the Posts jouney to become the equivalent of a well articulated tabloid (the whole paper as George Will, as it were).  Although their investigative reporting is still excellent, their opinion pages are full of conventional tripe.  And their slant is often to decieve by omission, frequently reporting without comment on things that have been shown false, as if the accuracy of a fact is of little importance to a newspaper.  And their “ombudsman position” was and is a joke, little more than an apoligist for the editors.

Since I only read to keep myself informed and not to “keep current”, I don’t feel any obligation to read Will, or Drudge, or Daily Kos or Politico, Huffington Post or any one of the other sites I see mentioned as “must reads” or “agenda setters”.

And truth be told,  I can’t think of any higher pleasure than starting out my day by not reading George Will.

*The column did the Op Ed equivalent of the old Movie promoters trick of taking a few selected words from a review such as “This movie is at the best, a piece of sh*t” andturning it into “This movie is… the best”.  The post “verified” that the phrases he (or more likely, other members of the right wing crazy machine) cherry picked were actually present in the article and then put the full faith and treasure of the Post behind him.

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