Eventually the smug get their just deserts
‘The left wing fears the right, but the right wing doesn’t fear the left.’ Vincent Bugliosi made that statement in an article I just read in The New York Times. A Los Angeles prosecutor and author with a good reputation, he was the subject of an article about his new book which suggests that President Bush should be prosecuted for murder concerning the deaths of American soldiers in Iraq. His publishers and the author himself didn’t expect the media to invite him for tea and crumpets, but they also didn’t think they would be sent to Coventry either. Not one news or talk show has picked up on this book, even though word of mouth has made it No. 13 on The Times Bestseller list.
He is being ignored. Interesting. Why is the left afraid of the right and not vice versa? That’s a good question.
In order to be fearful, you must first acknowledge that there is something out there to fear. The left is afraid of the right because first of all they recognize that the right exists with all the characteristics of its conservative philosophy. The left has a certain amount of respect for the ways and means of a worthy adversary, which the conservative right has proven itself to be. It takes two to tango in the political arena, and the left assumes that it has a partner who wants to dance. However, when your partner isn’t interested in making eye contact, it tends to make one nervous.
As for the right, they don’t recognize that there is anything to fear. No one exists for them to fear on the left because they just continue to ignore the left. Picture the right wing of Washington as a bunch of righteous tin soldiers who walk the rose garden path complacent in their self-satisfied suits shooing away those irritating little gnats and flies of liberalism. Fear? It wouldn’t enter their minds. They are much too smug.
Smugness is a very under-examined trait. To be smug, you must be, by definition, offensively self-satisfied. You are so self-satisfied that you not only think you are better than those around you, but you are not even aware of those around you. Smug individuals have a protective force field of righteousness that bounces your comments back to you unexamined and unacknowledged.
They are certain of their opinion, confident that they are performing in life the way God or society admires, and have the absolute certainty that they have gained the knowledge that it takes to bring the rest of us along with them if we would all just listen. Or not. It doesn’t matter. For example, the neo-cons continue picking democracy off the menu for the Middle East, with a healthy dose of the American way of life on the side. Their smugness keeps them from noticing that many other countries at the table would like to place their own orders. But thanks anyway.
Do not confuse a smug person with a bully. They are not at all the same thing. Bullies are fully aware of all those around them. They have sized them up and can zero in on their weaknesses. You can fight a bully, but you cannot fight a smug person. Rumsfeld was a bully, but he wasn’t smug. He’s gone. Cheney is a bully and smug; he takes a lickin’ but keeps on tickin’. There is good reason for the frothing at the mouth when any Democrat wails about Cheney. You bet we are afraid of him.
To be ignored is by far the most destructive and maddening injury that can be inflicted on a person. It makes them crazy. The Columbine High School shootings, or any of these seemingly over-reactive actions taken by the ignored, are, in my mind, reactions to the smug qualities of some group of individuals that were either religious (a huge justifier for smugness), wealthy or successful in sports.
It is no mystery why Vincent Bugliosi and his book are being ignored. He is just another one of those Bush-bashing lefties who keep trying to make some point about something or another. So tiresome. Be gone, ye irritant.
Sadly, you must wait a while for the smug to get their comeuppance. The universe moves slowly in its payback. They will fall and fall hard this time, I am afraid. In fact, the descent may be happening as we speak, whether the right is paying attention or not.