Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Savage postal scrotum!

Scott writes:

Hi Kevin,

Re: (the Savage diatribe), you wrote, "(Savage): We shouldn't be spending a nickel on this, as far as I'm concerned. ... I don't want one nickel of my money going over there. ... I am sick of being bled to death by every damn incident on the earth.
(Kevin): This takes some fucking nerve. Burn in hell, Savage."

Putting aside Dan's whining about God and Islamic hippies dying, his first point was/is a point of contention in the US - and that's about all the money being sent. Private donations from US citizens total *almost* as much as the tax money Bush gave away. I'm all for forced charity, but the reaction to the tsunami has shown that private folks (citizens, churches, charity organizations, et al) are more than willing, able and ready to respond when needed.

What also got Savage riled up was the UN and it's constant whining that it's the only appropriate organization to help (read: bullshit). But while the UN is bitching about being 'undermined in it's efforts to help the victims', real aid is being delivered by the folks who do the heavy lifting (national militaries operating outside the blue-helmet goofball & rape squads).

I'm all for the US going in and fixing the problem, a la the carrier group now there with the equipment needed to deliver supplies to damaged areas. And it's great that other countries (like Team Japan) are jumping in with huge amounts of get-the-job-done. But even ordinary Americans get tired when:
- Beggars who really shouldn't be choosers (namely the affected gov'ts) are declining aid from certain specific people (read: the Israelis),
- The UN is being a petulant 5-year-old child because the rest of the world won't wait for the UN to get it's impotent self in gear.

So yes, Savage is an ass. But he's got a point about all the bitching going around with respect to how things are getting done. Because yet again, the USA is stepping up in a big way - and largely getting a big raspberry in return.


I don't listen to Savage's broadcasts and have no idea what his larger argument is, but I felt his rant was completely out of line. It's also not consistent with what his fellow conservatives have been saying and doing. I saw one conservative repudiation of Savage here. A noteworthy quote:

This chucklehead is called a conservative. There's nothing conservative about this idiocy. A joyless, hyper-libertarian sect might make such statements, but not conservatism.

After all, it's conserving the mores of the Western, Christian heritage. The sacredness of human life, the duty to help the helpless, the justness of giving to the needy, this healthy humanism is what we're preserving. Find the Good Samaritan ethic anywhere in Savage's comments.

Conservatism shows respect for the collected wisdom that's accrued in custom and tradition over the ages -- what C.S. Lewis calls the Tao. Compassion, aid to the needy and the preservation of life run through the Tao. Savage jettisons this in favor of Ayn Rand's cold-blooded new morality. Fortunately, the rest of the conservative world has been very proactive in supporting tsunami relief.

Conservatism is warmer, deeper and more human than the sterile individualism Savage is selling. Allowing him to be one of our spokesmen both perverts the movement and plays into every false stereotype the critics make about us.

We justly critique the Left for embracing the fabrications and betrayals of Michael Moore. But we need to keep our own house in order as well.

[link found at Satan's Anus]

As I survey my own blogroll, I see almost unanimous agreement from all parts of the political spectrum that the victims of the tsunami are worthy of aid. Disasters like this represent times when most of us put aside petty differences and chip in however we can. Sure, we have to deal with our own resentment, because we know our efforts won't be fully appreciated by the recipients of the aid we give. In this particular case, we also have to worry about whether we're helping people with an anti-American agenda. I think we should worry about that later. The people need help now, and we have to hold out hope that, among the bad eggs, some will see the light and respond to what we do with gratitude. Or we could be cynics like Savage and tell the world to go fuck itself.

I don't deny the importance of the issues you're raising, Scott, and I'm glad we agree Savage is an ass. He simply pissed me off because he's out of line, and because he quite obviously doesn't represent the majority of conservatives.


No comments: