Skip to comments.Whack-A-Pol: The Sport Of Bloggers
Posted on 01/11/2006 8:55:38 PM PST by formercalifornian
This week's Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Judge Samuel Alito appear to have given rise to a new sport in the blogosphere: Whack-A-Pol.
Here's how the game is played: Every time a senator pops up with a comment on Alito, bloggers whack 'em down with a rhetorical hammer. But unlike the game Whack-A-Mole, where the nimble moles often avoid the blows by ducking into their holes, no senator -- regardless of party or popularity outside the realm of mouth-to-mouth combat over judicial nominations -- can escape the jabs of bloggers. Even worse, bloggers tend to prefer hammers of the sledge variety to the padded pummeling tools used on those carnival rodents.
Read the potshot John Aravosis of Americablog took at Lindsey Graham, for instance. Aravosis apparently once thought that Graham might be different from his colleagues, but then he heard the South Carolina Republican address the issue of court reviews of "enemy combatants" being held in the war against terrorism.
"I'm disappointed to see that he has an evil, dishonest, political side just like most Republicans in town," Aravosis said.
That dig was tame compared with the one Markos Moulitsas Zuniga of Daily Kos leveled at Tom Coburn, R-Okla. "OK, Tom Coburn really IS a loon," he wrote after Coburn ranted about sodomy, prostitution and abortion.
Armando, another Daily Kos contributor, dismissed "Box Turtle Cornyn" -- that's John Cornyn, R-Texas -- as a mouthpiece for the Republican Party line. As near as I can tell, the box-turtle reference is to a much-maligned 2004 quote from Cornyn about rearing children "in a world where that union of man and box turtle is on the same legal footing as man and wife." But in any case, it's definitely not a compliment.
Bloggers on the right have been even more brutal in bashing Democratic senators who dare to speak at or about Alito's confirmation hearings.
Ed Morrissey of Captain's Quarters called Russ Feingold a "jerk" for his "outright insulting" suggestion that Alito may have been prepped for the hearings a bit too much by White House staff. And National Review Online's Bench Memos accused Patrick Leahy of Vermont, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, of being a demagogue for questioning Alito about the search of a suspected drug dealer's 10-year-old daughter.
Sometimes the senators' names alone lend themselves to attack. Alliterative headline references to "Buffoon Biden" and "Demagogue Durbin" (as in Dick Durbin, D-Ill.) are hard to resist. And when a senator like Joe Biden, D-Del., asks a question that takes more than three times as many words as Alito's answer, that just begs for commentary.
What it all comes down to is the reality that many bloggers (and many Americans, according to polls) just don't respect members of Congress.
Although he spoke only of Senate Democrats at the time, Mark Noonan of GOP Bloggers actually represented that general contempt of Congress quite well when he wrote this: "On behalf of all Americans, I'd like to apologize for making Judge Alito put up with a bunch of pontificating, partisan political ignoramouses (sic) as they preen themselves for the TV cameras. ... It is a farce. Why don't they just say 'we're going to vote on our pre-conceived desires' and allow Alito to go golfing instead of listening to this nonsense."
That about says it. And they sure don't like senatorial circus acts, either.
````This week's Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Judge Samuel Alito appear to have given rise to a new sport in the blogosphere: Whack-A-Pol. `
hell, we've been doing that right here for almost 9 years.
they act like 'blogs' are the be all end all of everything.
and half the time blogs get their stuff from here with NO credit.
That's true. And I think some even call FR a blog occasionally!
sets my teeth on edge.
Exactly! They don't ask questions they give speeches and lectures!
Alito is probably sitting there quietly thinking "Not this S*** again!"
Gee, you mean bloggers, newsgroups, bulletin boards and other websites actually skewer politicians? Wow! National Journal, you've really got yourself a scoop this time!! /sarcasm
Uh oh. Now someone will post that picture.
I like that picture. :)
do a picture search on yahoo or google for "not this S*** again" but dont use *
I knew it.
thats the one! :P
I want to make a t-shirt with this picture!! That is great.