Kulturkampf Lunacy, Courtesy of National Review Online
Whaddya know--apparently someone at the National Review has noticed a startling omission at this here blog. Via Matthew Yglesias, here's NRO's Jim Geraghty, noting the silence, I suppose, of the lefty blogosphere over the fact that Fahrenheit 9/11 wasn't nominated for a Best Picture nomination:
Nothing (so far) at Eschaton, Daily Kos, James Wolcott, Josh Marshall, Kevin Drum, Matthew Yglesias, Tapped, The Left Coaster… Did I miss some [Michael] Moore fans? I realize most of these guys are policy wonks, but none of them has any take or opinion on Hollywood's elite giving the thumbs-down to the most prominent anti-Bush piece of work from the past year?
I can't speak for the other Left Coaster bloggers, but I don't care about the Academy Awards period, just as I don't care about the Golden Globes, People's Choice awards, Emmy awards, et al. Thus, the fact that F9/11 wasn't nominated didn't even cross my mind until Geraghty pointed it out.
But I think his response gives us an insight into the CPUSA-like mentality (ironic, innit?) of contemporary right-wingers. Wading through NRO, and in particular Geraghty's colleague Jonah Goldberg, is like reading an old issue of the New Masses in that seemingly innocuous movies, books, and other pop cultural ephemera are zealously studied in order to discern whether they are "conservative" or not. Although Moore's film is obviously a political work, the fact that Geraghty obsesses over something as inconsequential as the Academy Award nomination demonstrates how ridiculous this ceaseless hunt for ideological validation in the trivial world of pop culture can become. Roy Edroso, who has been noting this right-wing compulsion for some time, has the appropriate response:
Imagine needing the comfort of popular approbation so badly that you would voluntarily comb through movie award nominations in search of comforting zeitgeist pellets! Yet these guys do it all the time. They sit around figuring out which movies are conservative. Hell, they'll even tell you what sorts of paintings and unread-gift-books are conservatively correct.
As their mania accelerates, I expect they will start identifying conservative desklamps, picture-frames, hubcaps, and brands of dental floss. Maybe they should start a tab at National Review Online called "What's Right, What's Blight!"