September 16, 2004
Reminder: My Whatever
A Bush supporter, taken somewhat aback at my estimation of his being either stupid, ignorant or hypocritical, has this to say in the comment thread in the previous post:
"Are you still going to be like this next year after Bush wins?
Do you really expect me to come back? Do you really expect me to buy your books?"
My response to these questions: Possibly to the first, and I really couldn't give a rat's ass to questions two and three.
Let's expand on these in backward order. First, if you think I'm going to watch what I say here to possibly preserve a book sale or two, you're out of your hollow gourd. For one thing, I don't want readers who think they can presume to tell me what I should or should not say by holding the cost of a hardcover over my head; it sets a bad precedent. Y'all can just take a leap off a highway overpass, as far as I'm concerned. For another, I've been writing this sort of crap long before I had book sales; strangely enough, the books seem to moving out from the bookstores just fine. By personal inclination and by experience, there's no advantage in me shutting myself up. So quite obviously I don't intend to.
Besides, only a moron buys books -- particularly fiction -- on the basis of the author's politics. Author Mark Helprin has written what is far and away my favorite book of contemporary fantasy: Winter's Tale. He's also an unregenerate neocon, which has been my least favorite political flavor for some time now. Orson Scott Card, who has written two of my favorite science fiction books, is a conservative member of the LDS Church and views gay marriage as a terrible threat to our nation. As we all know, I think that's pretty silly. China Mieville, who writes lovely fictions, is so socialist (speaking of lovely fictions) that he ought to be salmon-hued. I wouldn't vote any of them into office. But I will buy their books.
I'm sure if I essayed all my favorite fiction writers, the vast majority would have politics I view as impractical, immoral or flat-out insane. And in nearly all cases, I could not care less. What I care about is whether they tell a good story and I am entertained. I can say the same thing, translating for medium, for musicians, artists, architects, actors, dancers and, hell, I don't know, circus performers. I mean, if you want to limit your cultural consumption to only the people who agree with your politics, go right ahead, and then prepared to be bored out of your gourd by Thursday.
Moving on to whether I want people to come back to my site -- I remind everyone once again to read the site disclaimer, and to pay particular attention to the part in which I discuss why I'm not particularly interested in being "fair" to people whose views are different from my own. Read them. Learn them. Love them. They will save you the sort of sputtering indignation from which this fellow is suffering.
Also, as a reminder -- just because I personally believe something doesn't make it so. Yes, I do believe that generally speaking you have to be stupid, ignorant or a hypocrite to vote for George Bush in the coming election. But I allow for the possibility that I could be wrong. I don't really see how, mind you. But there it is. If you genuinely believe you aren't stupid, ignorant or a hypocrite for voting for Bush, you're welcome to try to impress me with your intelligence, knowledge and sincerity. I'm willing to be persuaded you are the exception that proves the rule. Good luck with that. Here's a hint, though: Suggesting that you'll just walk off in a huff because you don't like what I write here or how I write it isn't a good way to do that.
But of course, if you don't like what you see here -- move on. I mean, that's what I do; I'm currently on a break from most political blogs because at the moment I'm finding the lot of them generally profoundly irritating. Therefore, if you find what I am writing equally irritating, shouldn't you stop reading me? I don't want to be a cause of pain in your life. Please, scoot, with my blessings. It's not like I'm getting paid here, you know. It's all the same to me whether I have 50 people visiting the site a day, or 5,000.
As for going after Dubya -- well, why wouldn't I? He's already the most incompetent president we've had in eight decades, and at this late date I don't suddenly expect him to get any better -- indeed, since second terms are almost invariably worse than first terms, I expect him and his administration to get a great deal worse, alas for us all. It's bad for us in general, but it'll make for good writing. So, yes, if you're going to demand a Dubya-free Whatever, you might as well bail out now, because it ain't gonna happen. So long.
I hope this clears up any lingering confusion.
Posted by john at September 16, 2004 12:29 AM
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