Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Ted Rall is slipping - or is he?

Is Ted Rall slipping? Ted Rall, the racist cartoonist who sees a Bush conspiracy behind every tree. His latest column is unusual in that it has somewhat decent reasoning, in this case expressing his opposition to the death penalty. I can certainly respect his atypical sensibility, which is a far cry from his usual nonsense. He asked, "Is a 17-1/2-year-old murderer so different from an 18-year-old that the former should have his life spared while the latter should not?" Actually, almost all supporters of the death penalty believe that 17-year-olds like that monster Roper do deserve to die, just like adults. We hold that the death penalty was not "inherently inconsistent and therefore intrinsically irrational" until the courts started overstepping their authority and said that you can't execute minors.

There's something curious about Rall's column. Akin to the children's puzzle abcdefghijkmnopqrstuvwxyz, there's something missing. Can you see it? There's none of his usual witless diatribe against President Bush. There's nothing against "right-wingers" or Republicans, either! Wow. Rall is a foaming-at-the-mouth liberal who recently accused private corporations of censorship (there really is no such thing, because censorship is strictly a government action). He ludicrously claimed a couple of weeks ago that "political blogs are dominated by the hard right" -- so who, then, are Brad DeLong, Atrios and DailyKos? And just last week, he marveled, "You know things are complicated when the right-winger stands up for the little old lady and his liberal counterpart favors the interests of the rich developer." Actually, Ted, it's almost always been liberals who have supported anti-property measures like zoning restrictions and abuse of the Endangered Species Act. Thomas Sowell has written extensively on that nonsense of "preserving open spaces" and "minimizing the impact" of someone who just wants to build a house.

So when I didn't see Bush-bashing in Rall's new column, it wasn't my eyes after all (I do have an appointment tomorrow at Lenscrafters). However, Rall makes up for his latest column's quasi-rationality with his "cartoons," if you can call them that. His latest are a straw man, an even bigger straw man, and complete cluelessness about a current issue. And of course, he hadn't been sufficiently puerile, so he drew some "Bush is Hitler" nonsense. I won't even dignify the last frame by describing its claptrap, but I will say this last thing.

Reality check, Rall: Hitler was appointed, not elected. So much for your history degree, Ted. Where was it from, the Dan Rather School where you learn to make things up?

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