The New York Times: Circling the Drain

Academics have, for centuries, looked far back in time as they argued and speculated about why the Roman Empire fell, but we now have an opportunity to observe in real time the accelerating decay of that imperial gatekeeper of liberal conventional wisdom, the New York Times.

A pair of op-eds from August 27th illustrate this sad phenomena as its writers invent a new stage in the Kübler-Ross grief scale inserted somewhere between “denial”, “anger” and eventual “acceptance”: “delusion.”

The first op-ed is by congressman and civil rights legend John Lewis, whose work in the Sixties makes it awkward to have to point out that he is entirely full of it, having morphed from an anti-establishment hero into just another establishment hack. Sadly, he seems totally oblivious to his sad transformation over the last five decades even as he keeps milking his past in order to block any kind of critical look at the nonsense he is peddling in the 21st Century.

His op-ed is entitled “A Poll Tax by Another Name,” which is a problem because what he is whining about – mostly laws that require voters to prove that they are who they say they are – is neither literally nor figuratively a “poll tax.”

Poll taxes are, well, taxes charged voters for the privilege of voting. Voter ID laws, in contrast, are requirements that people identify themselves before voting. Nope, not the same. Not even close.

“Despite decades of progress, this year’s Republican-backed wave of voting restrictions has demonstrated that the fundamental right to vote is still subject to partisan manipulation. The most common new requirement, that citizens obtain and display unexpired government-issued photo identification before entering the voting booth, was advanced in 35 states and passed by Republican legislatures in Alabama, Minnesota, Missouri and nine other states — despite the fact that as many as 25 percent of African-Americans lack acceptable identification.”

Those GOP bastards, forcing people to prove they are who they say they are before voting in an election! It’s almost a Robert Byrdian level of racism!

Wait, I should show more respect for this Democrat icon. After all, Byrd was a kleagle.

Let’s leave aside the dubious notion that a quarter of all black adults lack a photo ID – which would mean, among other things, that a quarter of them can’t drive. Or cash checks. Or fly on an airliner. Or get a job, not that this would be a big issue in the miserable Obama economy.

Let’s also leave aside the even more dubious (not to mention patronizing and utterly obnoxious) idea implied by Lewis that these citizens lack the basic competence to obtain such ID. It’s interesting that hardcore conservatives have a significantly higher opinion of African-Americans’ ability to function than those liberals who loudly claim their leadership, but it isn’t surprising. Liberalism is an ideology based upon low expectations.

Also left unsaid is why we should be concerned that someone of any race who can’t fulfill the basic function of obtaining a photo ID isn’t voting. If voting isn’t important enough to you to spur you to make the effort to go get an ID, you probably shouldn’t be voting in the first place.

Lewis (like the rest of the liberal establishment) can’t seem to find any evidence of voting fraud – and the Times staff made no effort to help him. For both their benefit, let me point out that there’s this thing called “Google,” but you can save yourself the trouble and just review Michelle Malkin’s overview of some recent voter fraud cases.

Instead of confronting the issue, Lewis pooh-poohs the necessity of such laws, dismissing the idea of voter fraud with such insights as “in Kansas, there were far more reports of U.F.O. sightings than allegations of voter fraud in the past decade.”

Yeah, we can all agree that rural Republican states are not hotbeds of voter fraud. The problem is urban Democratic areas like Chicago, Milwaukee and so forth – places Lewis’s deeply dishonest screed ignores – where voter fraud in support of liberal candidates is endemic.

At the heart of this is one sordid fact. Lewis and the Democrats – and the Times – are not concerned that voter ID laws won’t work to prevent voter fraud; the liberals are terrified that they will.

Oh, and you can almost see Lewis’s Times editor’s face contort into a rictus of horror at Lewis’s observation that in Texas, a concealed weapons permit is considered valid voting ID while a student ID is not. Well, kind of by definition, a person getting a CCW has undergone a background check more rigorous than one required for getting a passport or a driver’s license – though when the Constitution mentions the right to bear arms there doesn’t seem to be a footnote saying that the Second Amendment only applies when some bureaucrat signs off on it.

On the contrary, I bought a lot of beer with the fake student ID my pal, who worked in the UC San Diego office where they made them, got me. Thanks for the hazy, intermittent memories, suckers!

Times regular Charles Blow’s op-ed is similarly reality-challenged. It’s called “Falling Forward,” and it makes you wonder if Blow has been in a cave for the last three years. Actually, he kind of has – the walls of willful ignorance surrounding the liberal world of the Times are more impenetrable than yards of granite when it comes to keeping out facts that undercut the liberal narrative.

Blow is outraged by what he claims is a huge increase in unintended pregnancies, and he has identified a cause.

Republicans are limiting access to abortions.

Well, you gotta give him that – killing their babies would solve the problem of unintended pregnancies. But then, so would these women deciding to limit their mating to men they are actually married to instead of every random dude who comes along with a bottle of booze and a smile.

Oh, wait, that’s judgmental. We can’t have that. See, “[w]e have to remove the stigma and judgment around sex.” That’s the real problem – people feel so judged and stigmatized for having sex that they, well, have sex with everyone in sight. Wait, did I read that right?

Now, savor the magic of Blow’s prose – prose that got through the vaunted Times editorial process:

“This is what we’re saying: actions have consequences. If you didn’t want a child, you shouldn’t have had sex. You must be punished by becoming a parent even if you know that you are not willing or able to be one.

This is insane.

Even if you follow a primitive religious concept of punishment for sex, as many on the right seem to do, you must at some point acknowledge that it is the child, not the parent, who will be punished most by our current policies that increasingly advocate for “unborn children” but fall silent for those outside the womb.

This is not how a rational society operates.

Wait, so let’s see if we can puzzle this out. Someone who breeds out of wedlock is “punished by becoming a parent?” Apparently, Blow does not know the difference between a “punishment” and a “consequence.” I guess someone who drops out of high school is being “punished” by not getting a diploma, and someone who doesn’t show up for work is “punished” by not getting paid.

This is a great illustration of how liberals seem to believe that bad things that stem from stupid behavior aren’t easily anticipated consequences of poor decisions but are, instead, the result of some malevolent conspiracy by evil conservatives to cause misery to innocent losers for reasons that are not readily apparent.

Oh, and not thinking like Blow is “insane.” Doesn’t someone at the Times own a dictionary?

Moreover, people who think you probably shouldn’t kill an unborn child because he is inconvenient practice a “primitive” religion – you know, like Christianity and Orthodox Judaism. And, remarkably, it is the child who is “punished” by not being aborted. But we’re the ones who aren’t “rational.”

And, wackiest of all, Blow states that “Now is when we need government to step up and be smart” – like that’s ever happened. If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results, than liberals like Blow and the Times staff are certifiable.

And so, the once mighty New York Times keeps spinning around the bowl. Around and around it goes, and when it finally darts through the figurative drain, there won’t be any argument about what finally flushed it away. Nonsense like these superficial, silly op-eds will be Exhibit A.


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