Saturday, August 29, 2009

John Batchelor: Elitist

by Smitty

I have seen the face of elitism on the right, and it is John Batchelor.

In the PJTV segment linked, John Batchelor has a point: the egalitarian mindset is at odds with the elitist mindset. The modern GOP elitist mindset is as wrong now as when the Founding Fathers rejected The British Parliament's elitist mindset.
"I'm not going to pretend there is anything genuine about [the Tea Party Movement].
This is about people putting their faces on TV."
Anything, Mr. Batchelor? Anything? I've attended three Tea Parties in the greater DC area.

The media are sparse, except insofar as they're cherry-picking shots for blatant propaganda pieces. Typically, when someone builds an arugment around an absolute assertion such as "there is nothing genuine about the Tea Party Movement" my first reaction is that this is not in fact a dialogue or anything resembling an attempt to discuss a point. It's a rant.

The wife wandered by while I viewed the clip:
Mrs. Porch Manqué: "Is this parody?"
Porch Manqué: "This is self-parody."

Mr. Batchelor says at one point: "The chief idea of the party is liberty." And yet, you've conveniently labeled reasonably orderly, if raucus and spirited, dissent as "anarchy". Mr. Batchelor, how can you even play the anarchy card? All of the violence of which I'm aware has been carried out by those who oppose Tea Party Movement and its noble goals.

Mr. Batchelor on future voices of the GOP: "Right now, if I know their names, they're not the furture leaders."

Based upon the content of this clip, Mr. Batchelor, anyone you endorse is probably going to be a tool, a tool's tool, a machine tool for producing new tools. So my advice to you, Mr. Batchelor, is that your influence is best enhanced by endorsing everyone else, so that the sewage of your condescension doesn't become a stench overwhelming the aroma of your candidate.

Mr. Batchelor: "GOP is Confederacy-lite"

Get bent, John. I was just out on the Oregon coast at a family reunion. The people, while insufficiently loquacious and, no doubt, lacking the educational credentials from the 'proper' schools to show up on your radar, are pissed. And I don't mean that in a jolly, drunken British English sense. No, I mean a traditional, smelling a scam when confronted thereby, tired of having their good nature impinged pissed.

The Tea Party Movement is "We the People," irrespective of State. Your attempt at dismissive regionalism is wildly inaccurate at best. Let me attribute it to your elitism and ignorance, as opposed to wondering aloud who funds you.

Mr. Batchelor:
"Liberty requires order, and decency, and respect. Acting out, throwing signs out, getting thrown out of meetings, or making loud speeches to the television camera is not about liberty."
Let me translate: "Only I give good theater."

More importantly, who persuaded you that you are an arbiter of First Amendment employment? "To every thing there is a season," as somebody with a far greater reputation for wisdom than you once said. Every single bit of expression counts, sir. And the less constrained that expression is by elitists packing their own agendas, the better.

Restated, there is a tradeoff between efficiency and authenticity. Sure, the hand-made signs, malapropisms, and lack of coordination make you wince a bit. You'd like to give everyone a three hour course in Montesquieu before they get in front of a camera.

The Colonial Army would have also looked a pile of ass on the parade field, compared to the Redcoats.

Mr. Batchelor: "Future is about Republican party is about maintaining order and having ideas that connect with the American people."

If you mean the Rule of Law, such as it obtains under Eric Holder's Department of What?, then I can follow you. But I sense, based upon tone and content, that you may be referring to the permanent political class that has sprung up in the last century.

"One Graph to Rule them All," the Jacksoninan Party link says, combining Tolkein and something the Founding Fathers feared, and tried to engineer out of the Constitution (of which word you seem as aware as Jim Moran, I note). Are you little snobs growing fearful, not so much for your physical safety, but that a private citizen with a FaceBook page can pull back the curtain and reveal how lame you are without the megaphone?

Consider this, Mr. Batchelor. This is the Information Age. More people are tuning in, finding information, thinking independetly of your ilk, and forming the conclusion that We Don't Need You. Nautically speaking, you are a sailmaker. We are amidst a sea change away from being powered by your wind. Your sails pitch is falling flat. We will give you the shaft, and your boat will be screwed. And "We the People" will navigate away from the shoals of tyranny.

PS: As a measure of decency and restraint, I decided not to embed an abstract portrait of you. Some day you will thank me for this. I'm waiting.

This blog gets linkage and love from:John Batchelor, not so much.

Update II:
The Sundries Shack comes through with excellent reinforcements.


  1. I've noticed a disturbing trend among some of the right side blogs and sites to become infested with know nothing, done nothing but write egghead elitists.
    Pinheads who have never run anything bashing everyone from Palin to the Tea Parties to show just how educated they are.
    They can shove their sheepskins and get a real job for a few years before speaking or writing again.

  2. Hey! I like sailmakers and I like sailboats, and I is a two-fisted conservative street activist, buddy.

    If you must make a nautical reference, Mr. Batchelor is a log-canoe carver with a chipped flint.

  3. @McEnroe,
    Yes, but do your sailmaker friends sound like a bunch of petulant asses about screw-driven propulsion, or,
    are they a collection of wise old salts with whom it's fun to hang around?
    There is a significant difference betwixt the twa.

  4. Well I'll be danged, and here I thought 'abstract' meant "doesn't look like!" :)

  5. Smitty, may I take part of your transcript for a post of my own? You give a first-rate thrashing, but there's something there I must amplify tomorrow.

  6. They mostly just drink their beer and go back to work.

    They have been known to snort in amusement at a sport fisherman or cabin cruiser being towed back into harbor, though, and the words "stinkpotter" may have crossed their lips.

  7. Smitty,

    Why do you consistently refer to yourself as "Porch Manque'?" Is it an intentional reference to "porch monkey?" A literal reading of that word combination -- that you could have been a porch -- doesn't make any obvious sense.

  8. @Jimmie,
    I await your excellent follow up, sir.

  9. shouldn't there be "end of the world" music playing in the background when Sir John is inveighing?

  10. "Liberty requires order, and decency, and respect. Acting out, throwing signs out, getting thrown out of meetings, or making loud speeches to the television camera is not about liberty."

    "Future is about Republican party is about maintaining order and having ideas that connect with the American people."

    The $ word there is "order." Not impartial justice, not impartial study or observation, not love, not not lying, not not cheating, not not stealing, not not tolerating those who lie, cheat or steal ... but "order." Ordnung, isn't it?

    His words have the disagreeable ring of an edict.

    Order? Whose? How? Where? When? What?

    No doubt Jimmie will touch upon this matter.

    Not for Nothing: he is almost a dead-ringer for the immediate past President of my union local, who also hails from New York, although Upstate. During my active years I had from that chap the same posture and pretense, manifestly degrading the members' moral and material prestige, as issues from this.

    I recall returning home one evening to Morningside Heights from my Sunday intern job at a church in North Arlington, NJ via the Port of New York Authority Bus Terminal in the mid-1960s, descending towards the subway two or three abreast on a bank of fully laden side-by-side escalators and watching across the huge, packed lobby other banks of fully laden side-by-side escalators ascending, and thinking to myself, "New York is a very small town, the smallest place I have ever lived."

    Seattle is a far bigger town than New York, although it has been steadily shrinking under control of the attitude Batchelor exemplifies, albeit by the Party that needs no naming.

    He is not speaking of Republicanism but of Fascism and death.

    The biggest places I have lived were Claremont, CA in the 1940s and 50s and Wickenburg, AZ in the early 1970s (until property owners put locks on their gates because they could not trust the new dudes to reclose and reset the posts, wires or slides, thus keeping their livestock inside the fence lines).

    Claremont, too, is now a small town, ten times more residents at least than when I lived there, although the Mexicans -- who in the 40s and 50s were Americans, not illegals, and were good friends and especially star football players on our little high school's championship teams, and who lived in the town's barrio (where also stood its only Roman Catholic Church), and since have grown affluent and healthy and built and bought as most do or try to -- seem to maintain a sense of big-ness and confer that in the town that otherwise is shrunk to cold meanness by the impossible condescension of its academic elites.

    Order, indeed. That man means contraction, not order. Life is expansion. That man looks and speaks death.

    Life is not going for it. Life is order and order is expansion. I will follow and support anyone whose life and message is expansion. I will subvert and oppose anyone whose life and message is contraction or whose life and message are not one and the same, and that for expansion.

    I support order as the Hebrew word mishpat describes it, the expansion of life by doing it, which is in truth the embodiment of God, who is Being and Doing.

  11. Sounds like he's a bit peeved that Limbaugh and co. are getting all the media attention.

    I can see why -- listening to this guy for over 5 minutes is asking too much of anyone.

  12. John Batchelor = Homo

  13. Part of FISKING THE NIGHT AWAY at:

  14. Batchelor is a "pen for hire" who will passionately articulate the position of his Patron(s) as if they were his own. In the early days of the War on Terror, he was with the neocons. During the election of 2008, he was the Smearer in Chief of Obama (go to Human Events and search his name. Now, he decries Talk Radio for doing the exact same thing). Since it presently seems obvious that the GOP is unlikely to regain power due to demography, JB smells which way the wind blows and steers a course Left-ward and away from those town hall screamers who he sees make the GOP further unelectable on a nation-wide scale. This increases the likelihood that he keeps a media job. I assure you - if the Tea Parties made the GOP *more* likely to regain power, he'd be singing their praises.