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Filet Of Keillor

Lileks practices his fine art on his fellow Minnesota scribe, once again:

",,,I want to see my man excited by the prospect of victory and not shrink from it as so many Democrats do. They've read too many books about heroic dissenters and it makes them nervous about being in too big a crowd."

I have no idea what he's talking about. Seriously. Perhaps in Pasedena there's some alternate-universe Barnes and Noble where the shelves are stacked high with books praising the administration and shouting the myriad & infinite glories of America the Perfect, but I was at B&L today and there was a table six feet long heaped with books about how we're screwed and broke and lied to and misled and all the other merry sentiments that abound in the land these days. I don't think any of the authors are worried about selling too many books, and ending up in too big a crowd. If he's saying that the Modern Brave Soul automatically questions his principles if they're accepted by the masses - the loutish, stupid, cat-strangling masses - then he seems to have missed that portion of the internet that practices Heroic Dissent on a daily basis. Or maybe he spends all day reading the Daily Kos and wonders why these people are so timid and gunshy.

Let's keep going with that crowd idea:

"The huge crowds that Barack draws are stunned by the fact that someone like him, with that interesting name, is - hang on now - a mainstream candidate for President of the United States, and that he is, on close examination, One of Us."

That's the line that pinged out at me, and made me file away the column for future fiskery. One of us. Never mind the gabba-gabba-hey connotations, or the "mainstream" line - I'd love to hear a Woebegon ep in which Rev. Wright brings his race-based rhetoric to a small Lutheran church. ("Think twice about who you put your arm around, Senator McCain," the Scout cautioned in another column, back in the olden times when associations were relevant..) No, by "one of us" Keillor, I suspect, means the "us" of the smart set, the people who read the New Yorker even if one out 52 covers offends, the people who went to college for real instead of floating by with frat-boy grins, the people who protested the war instead of fighting it, the people who grapple, you know, with issues, seriously, and express a certain soulful anguish at the complexity of it all, and file away the details about zoning disputes with neighbors to be worked into a novel six years hence, when the whole incident has ripened into a metaphor.

Lots more where that came from.


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Mike James wrote:

There's an extra '2' in your link--this URL works:

practices his fine art

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on July 23, 2008 5:18 AM.

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