I was a Mark Steyn groupie!

Mark Steyn, Canadian national, Bush idolater and giddy acolyte of the disgraced Conrad Black, writes prose that's the mental equivalent of candy floss - it's great to look at; it's very enjoyable while you're consuming it; and it's both gone and forgotten in seconds.

One of his more celebrated escapades was taking an unescorted tour through western Iraq in the summer of 2003, as a result of which he wrote an article entitled 'Come on over, the water's lovely'; an article which, if he possesses a working conscience, he should force himself to read and re-read at least once an hour. A couple of relevant quotes:

"Hundreds of thousands of dead civilians? Never gonna happen. Hand-to-hand street-fighting as Baghdad morphs into Stalingrad? Dream on."

"As a general rule of thumb, when two non-government organisations, the French foreign minister, Dominique de Villepin, the BBC and the New York Times agree that the whole powder keg's about to go up, it's a safe bet that things are going swimmingly."

Well, maybe that's just the smack that's put out for the neocon folks, the folks his old boss loved to suck up to. When he has to raise his game, Mark can move and shake like the most polished UN bureaucrat, such as when he parachuted in to act as Papa Conrad's court jester cum handbag carrier at the Bilderberg Group 2003. Oddly enough, I don't think that adventure ever made it into an article. One is sure that it might just have been over the heads of the plebs who read the smack and pay the wages; there are some things they're just too stupid to understand.

Here, one must make full disclosure - I was a Mark Steyn groupie; in fact, I wasn't an ordinary groupie - I was a super-groupie; he even gave me a prize! One becomes a Mark Steyn groupie by falling under the spell of the dazzling prose, until you realise this is a guy who goes to Bilderberg, which means he's a mouthpiece for the interests of big money, the 'global economy' and rich international trash. I mean, folks, let's get real - have you ever seen a Steyn piece on the impact of illegal immigration in Southern California? Or Georgia? Or about outsourcing?

Or about the arrest of Larry Franklin?

It's much easier to write thumbsucker ra-ra pieces on sweeping themes like the Muslims and the Euroweenies than about anything which might actually impact upon the lives of his readers.

However, as a discalced Steynian who has drunk deep of the Kool-Aid and lived to tell the tale, there are times when it's easy to catch him out recycling the same smack - as he does in today's London 'Daily Telegraph'. Permit me:

"The American constitution begins with the words "We the people". The starting point for the EU constitution is: "We know better than the people."

Now compare and contrast with this passage from his essay 'The Slyer Virus', which appeared in the February 2002 issue of 'The New Criterion':

"The principle underpinning the EU is not “We, the people” but “We know better than the people”—not just on capital punishment and the single currency, but on pretty much anything that comes up."

Or was that quote not from an article in 'The Spectator' that the gloriously named Borzoiblog linked to in December 2001? Money quote:

"As we've seen yet again, the principle underpinning the new Europe is not "We, the people" but "We know better than the people" - not just on capital punishment and the Treaty of Nice and the single currency, but on pretty much anything that comes up, including national elections."

Whoops! Never mind - while he's out playing Davy Crockett in New Hampshire, American soldiers are still being killed day in, day out in a war for which he was a prominent cheerleader, while his old patron was helping himself to his shareholders' money.

Maybe somebody will turn it into a musical.


Blogger Dennis Mangan said...

"Discalced Steynian": I like that. But I believe having a "discalced Steynian" "drinking deep of the Kool-Aid" is an extremely mixed metaphor.

1:48 PM  
Blogger The g-Gnome said...

Everyone's a critic

9:54 PM  
Blogger dave in boca said...

When Katie Couric today said that Michael Richards should "say an act of contrition," I think Catholic metaphors are beginning to seep into public discourse to an alarming degree.

Steyn himself claims to be a baptized Catholic, then a Zionist Jew [I believe], and now is a born-again Christian.

I may not have all these rattings and re-rattings straight, but didn't Conrad Black write a great book on FDR before renouncing his knighthood or lordship and reverting to Canadian citizenship? And rifling his shareholders' shareholder-value big-time?

BTW, I have several of Christopher Hitchens'books of collected articles [Love, Poverty & War] and CH has mined his own quarries again and again, so Mark is not alone.

Another former aquaintance and friend, Fouad Ajami, has moved all over the spectrum in his search for answers. And repeated a few of his own tropes, in the process.

I like Mark's "America Alone," but recognized some of his best lines being recycled.

10:45 PM  

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