August 22, 2002

TAPPED doesn’t like Josh Chafetz’s piece on Maureen Dowd. Josh is being too “literalist.”

Well, one of the many objectionable things about Dowd’s writing is that it always has this layer of I-was-just-joking-around deniability to it. (Kinda like Ann Coulter, who doesn’t get that benefit of the doubt). But I don’t think Josh was confused about what Dowd was saying. I think that Dowd was confused about what Dowd was saying.

And I’m pretty sure that Josh, who’s an American student at Oxford, is of draft age. Though, of course, that’s kind of a meaningless term since there’s no draft. — Damn! Now I’m getting carried away with the literalism!

UPDATE: Reader Gerard Vanderleun writes:

I find this little statement of “obvious fact” rather ill considered:

“The only people hot to fight this war are a bunch of nerdy chickenhawks brandishing grandiose plans to remake the Middle East.”

It has the overwhelming aspect of being, from the get-go, utterly untrue. I could introduce TAPPED to a number of New Yorkers of all ages, sexes, and classes whose only problem with the war is that it is not killing enough of the right people quickly enough. And that’s just New York. You start wandering around in what passes for the heartland and the incidence of American flags starts to go up as well as the bumper stickers and other visible forms of opinion proliferate. Perhaps TAPPED means the count of people in favor of the war is low within the circles in which they lunch and dine. From my own experience, this is not an unusual reality filter [their] environment. They really need to get out more. After all, they are actually taking Dowd seriously.

Ah well, TAPPED has failed to learn from the Book of Eastwood: “A man’s got to know his limitations.”

Vanderleun hosts this website, which shows where he stands. And good for him.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Bill Quick’s site has an extended discussion of the whole “chickenhawk” line — currently being substituted for actual argument by a number of antiwar bloggers — and pronounces it an antigay slur.

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