Monday, November 5, 2007

Conservative Idiot of the Day: Rich Lowry of the National Review

The race for "biggest idiot in the conservative blogosphere" is something akin to the race between the Miami Dolphins and the New York Jets to see who can lose the most games this year: it's a race, but not something you want to see. There are so many worthy candidates for the honor that it becomes a chore to say all the names, much less go to the effort of actually visiting their blogs to witness the horror firsthand. Nevertheless, a special favorite of mine is National Review's "The Corner," which is home to a rotating cast of luminaries like Kathryn Jean "K-Lo" Lopez, Jonah Goldberg, John "J-Pod" Podhoretz, Byron "Superhair" York, and John "Crazy Racist Englishman who only talks about English things and how he's a racist" Derbyshire. In our race to find the thickest of these particular fools, however, we can't overlook the sheer genius of Rich Lowry, whose offering today shows that no matter how hard he tries, he just can't. quite. understand. the nuances of international policy. Everything, and I mean everything has to be shoehorned into his "it's teh evil Islam!!!!11!!!1!!" view of things. Witness his ramblings on Pervez Musharraf's dictatorial outrages in Pakistan:

The Pakistan situation is another sign that what we face is a global insurgency with many different fronts from Karachi to London. I'm not a big fan of the "world war" terminology because that cues people to think in terms of conventional powers arrayed against one another in a hot or cold war (although such conflicts obviously can have guerrilla wars within them). What we have now is pretty much entirely guerilla wars. Musharraf is fighting one that is probably going to get worse before it gets better.
Well, ok, that's complete rubbish. I know it's tempting to take Musharraf's word for it, and believe that his blatant seizure of power is something he's doing to strike back at those evil Al Qaeda guys (the same ones his own intelligence service, the ISI, has been rather blatant about helping). However, do take his word for it overlooks one key facts: everyone he's arrested since his imposition of martial law this weekend has been either a judge, a reporter, a lawyer, or some member of his political opposition.

I know it's tempting to view everything through the Rumsfeldian lens of "OMG we're surrounded by teh terror!" but in this case you run the risk of looking like an idiot, as Lowry does, when you confuse a petty dictatorial power grab for an earnest effort to combat terrorism.