Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Bang the Drum, Slowly

Kevin Drum has decided to go all Lanny Davis on us and tar the "liberal blogosphere" as sexist. He frames a quote wherein McArdle claims to be the victim of sexism with these words:

Megan McArdle writes about sexism in the blogosphere:

[McArdle quote]

One of the most inexplicable tropes of the liberal blogosphere is its howling disdain for Megan. I guess it all goes back to the moronic "two-by-four" controversy, but it really ought to stop.

Lanny Davis, you will recall, waxed indignant in the pages of The Wall Street Journal about "the hate and vitriol of bloggers on the liberal side," whose sites were rife with anti-Semitic "bigotry and hatred and sanctimony" against Joe Lieberman. Davis' quotes were from comments by pseudonymous persons at The Huffington Post and Daily Kos, not from bloggers or "the liberal blogosphere." Hacks like Bill O'Reilly and nominally more sane folks, like Nat Hentoff, spread Davis' fraudulent charges with gusto, smearing left-leaning bloggers and the left as bigots.

Similarly, the perceived insults referenced in the McArdle excerpt Drum quotes are from "commenters" who McArdle suspects were coming from "both left and right." Perhaps Drum feels the need only to scold the left, but he doesn't explain why the liberal blogosphere is to be faulted for what McArdle's commenters say at McArdle's site or in e-mails to McArdle. Drum doesn't post the portion of McArdle's rant which discusses the thing which set her off -- Roy Edroso's hilarious Village Voice article which ridiculed 10 right-wing blogs, including McArdle's. Perhaps Drum realizes he couldn't repeat McArdle's gripe against Roy with a straight face, or on a full stomach, while simultaneously feigning ignorance of any reason for disdain of McArdle. (Roy dismisses McArdle's spluttering self-pity with good humor here.)

Drum concedes that McArdle is often wrong and/or obtuse. So apparently he knows where the line between legitimate criticism and sexist criticism rests, unlike those unidentified pigs who comprise the liberal blogosphere. (Drum also asserts that McArdle "ain't" Michelle Malkin, but fails to divulge whether sexist statements about Malkin are thereby okay with him.)

When I bash McArdle in the future, I'll send my critiques to Kev beforehand to make sure I don't offend. Sure, that would involve employing a double standard, and a sexist one at that, but I know Kev, like Lanny, has got the best interests of the liberal blogosphere at heart.

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