Sunday, December 6, 2015

From Jonah's world

Jonah-in-the-Whale, via WhatWouldSpideyDo.
I wouldn't presume to know what happened in San Bernardino on Friday, but I think we can be pretty confident it isn't as Jonah Goldberg suggests:
I think the “hybrid” attack theory is still plausible to me. I suspect that the original target wasn’t the Christmas party. My hunch is that Syed Farook went to the party and Bob from accounting stole his stapler or told him the ice-cream cake wasn’t halal and, in a rage, Farouk called an audible. He ran home, told his mail-order jihadist bride, “It’s go-time!” After a brief detour to drop their baby girl off at grandma’s and inscribe themselves in the Book of Worst Parents Ever, they went and murdered a bunch of innocent people. The willing suspension of reason about this is just amazing.

TASHFEEN: But honey, you promised we could blow up Norton Air Force Base. I bought the bombs and everything!
FAROOK: You know how it is with us Oriental dudes, my sweet, when our honor is attacked. I have no choice, and if I did have a choice, I have no impulse control.
TASHFEEN: Well, I'm coming with you then!
FAROOK: But—um—what about the baby?
TASHFEEN: Oh, we can drop her off with mom on the way over. It'll be fun! Sort of...

I love how he says "I think this is plausible to me" meaning "I don't even know whether I think this is plausible, but somebody might." And then preemptively accuses critics of a "willing suspension of reason".

The object, of course, isn't so much to reconstruct the dreadful event as to introduce a key rightwing talking point into the idea of such a reconstruction, quickly, before we get too much information, that we are in much greater danger than our hapless authorities want us to realize, from the terrorists in our midst, and it's all Obama's fault. I suppose he was writing the usual "why won't Obama say 'terrorism'" piece in his head when Obama went and said "terrorism", leaving poor Jonah little to work with when he got to his keyboard beyond a sour kind of bothsiderist resentment:
Other than the actual murder and maiming, the thing I hate the most about mass murderers of all stripes — be they psychopaths, jihadists, white supremacists, Luddites, gangsters, or a radical faction of “Up with People” — is the mad rush by observers to yoke the slaughter to a political agenda. I’m not excluding my own side, or myself, from this indictment.
But duty is duty, and after a certain amount of kvetching he comes out and does it anyway.
It turned out — this time — that the murderers had Muslim names. And they were terrorists. And the disappointment in some quarters is almost palpable. I caught some of Morning Joe from my hotel room before I left for the airport. The caption for one discussion was “Were They Radicalized?”
Almost palpable, but not quite. Luckily, Jonah has some of that extrasensory perception. And the Da'esh, of course, is prepared to back him up, anxious to take "credit" as they say for an incident that certainly has raised a lot of fear, though you'd think they'd be embarrassed at such remarkably pointless cruelty. What's important to them, I imagine, is asserting that they do have this reach and control. That's what "terrorism" means—we can strike you anywhere at any time, for not even any reason that you can figure out. And that's what suits Republicans as well.

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