***UPDATE for the benefit of National Review The Corner readers -- the point of the post below is that Ann Althouse regularly picks blogfights in a passive-aggressive and often dishonest fashion in order to drive traffic; this is why she was so upset recently when she got Andrew Sullivan's attention and then he didn't link to her directly, the cad. Hence, when J. Goldberg wonders why Althouse came after him aggressively in their Blogginheads thing -- that's why. She's all about the attention (read her posts about this -- they're all meta, about how she deliberately chose to engage him in order to provoke him). Anyway, that's probably the only point in here that NRO people will care about; the rest of the post is our usual Liberal Blogger mix of invective, Savage Calumny, and Dripping Contempt for All You Hold Dear. Read on if you choose, but it's mostly snark. Well-written, though.***
The occasion of their savage sniffing was their mutual attendance at a Liberty Fund conference honoring Frank Meyer. Apparently some people enjoy this sort of thing. Apparently some people bought Creed records.
Longtime observers of Althouse will recognize the pattern, and so will relatives of substance abusers. They have their inane conference, and then Althouse goes home and writes a vapid yet passive-aggressive post about how great she is and how everyone else is teh suck because they believe in things and she doesn't. Althouse feels things, and these things are terribly important:
I am struck -- you may think it is absurd for me to be suddenly struck by this -- but I am struck by how deeply and seriously libertarians and conservatives believe in their ideas. I'm used to the way lefties and liberals take themselves seriously and how deeply they believe. Me, I find true believers strange and -- if they have power -- frightening. And my first reaction is to doubt that they really do truly believe.
One of the reasons 9/11 had such a big impact on me is that it was such a profound demonstration of the fact that these people are serious. They really believe.
The problem with this is that it is self-aggrandizing pap, complete with a silly observation about 9/11. It's a strategy. It's a move in a game, the claim to be above playing it. Also, it's annoying. And beyond that, it's a confession that she's labored under conditions of appalling ignorance for years, particularly insofar as after, say, the USS Cole incident, she thought Al Qaeda was just kidding around. Though that does explain her affinity for the Bushites -- ignorance and hubris, wheeeeeee. Dumbass.
But the really fun part of the post is that there is no way to disagree with it, if you commit the error of doing anything besides laugh at it. I particularly enjoy the insinuation that if you approve of Frank Meyers you're as bad as OSAMA BIN LADEN. Which I'd agree with for snark purposes, but probably isn't exactly true. After all, for Al Charlie, his idea of R&R is cold rice and a little rat meat. For the National Review libertarian/ fusion/ whatever crowd, it's, well, this. (Sorry.)
Hehindeed. Anyway, Althouse does make me feel a bit sorry for Jonah Loadenberry, though not that much. Look at this plaintive little bleat from his response:
my conversation with Ann Althouse is up at BhTV. It got a little heated in the begining and I've been trying to figure out why Ann and I had such a problem talking to each other about Frank Meyer, state's rights etc. Ann's a nice and reasonable person, after all.
You noob. She set you up. Which is not too hard, as Jonah is none too bright, and also hopelessly tied to a very familiar type of infantile conservative identity politics, as in the assumption that Movement Conservatives embody a certain type of Homo Americanus, when really they're just geeky internet geeky geeks supported by wingnut welfare grants supplied by a bunch of true-believing suckers.
But the real comedy? You want to hear the real comedy? Althouse in full loony sail:
I see something wrong with the style of thinking that entails latching onto ideas as ideas. I have a problem with the fundamentalists and ideologues who don't keep track of how their ideas affect the real world and who don't maintain the empathy and the flexibility to adjust and correct their thinking in response to what they see.
What a hoot!
UPDATE: Or you could just watch this.
I suggest that you not. You have been warned.