plastic collar
Believed to be a recent likeness of Desi Kovacz, the young boy featured in yesterday’s story. (Image courtesy of someone called buck3200, who’s not quite a whole multiple of my favourite living Canadian singer.)

As none of you would be aware, a belligerently believalist blog by the name of Daily Kos (or was it The Daily Kos?) once sacrificed hours of its time to give yours truly a free writing workshop. As soon as their post—ostensibly on the topic of how much they were ignoring CliScep—was drawn to my attention a few months later, my reaction was to wonder, “Who are these lettuce-themed stalkers with nothing better to do than ignore us all day?”

I’ve always regretted how ungracious I was in the face of the altruism of strangers. In my defense, my ego was probably piqued when they compared my style unfavorably to that of today’s greatest satirist, Jonathan Swift. (Really though, how could I be expected to compete with such bleeding-edge, better-than-any-other-example-they-could-think-of-in-history comedy?)

Well, it seems my blogging of a TIME article has provoked a fresh outburst of generosity above and beyond the preconditions for sainthood. Expanding on their unsolicited, undeserved advice to me, the Quotidian Cossacks say, inter alia:

Keyes needs to learn how legitimate parody—like Peter Gleick’s classic ‘Heartland Strategy Document’—differs from the gratuitous deception that seems to be his only stock in trade.

Proper parodists use childishly-, almost babyishly-inept imitative gropings to remove any doubt in the mind of the (adult) reader that, ‘Hey, relax, this isn’t the real thing—or anything in particular, for that matter.’

Deniers like Keyes, on the other hand, are so ignorant of the generic and ethical requirements of the form that they actually resort to competent prose, correct punctuation and English orthography! This is all but calculated to make us, the reader, feel betrayed and stupid… which is hardly conducive to enjoying their blog, is it?

And make no mistake: they do this in the full knowledge—thanks to WordPress’ powerful, flexible yet user-friendly Statistics feature—that hundreds of their hapless readers will be American.

Is this amusing? I ask you, is this amusing? To anyone?

It moves me to the point of dyspnoea that ordinary, everyday Kosses should go out of their way to help me blog the best that I can blog, not once but twice, when we at CliScep have done nothing but neglect their exertions (at best), or snicker (at worst).

After all, it would be the easiest thing in the world for them to sit back and watch us “forge ahead, oblivious to [our] own blunders,” as Napoleon put it.

Or was it Peter Gleick?

[And no, I won’t link to The Tossed Lettuce, so please don’t ask.]


  1. Yes it does appear that poorly performed humorectomies are very popular with the climate extremist mob. Keep up the good work. The moronic true believers’ (pardon the redundancy) own behavior is the best weapon skeptics have.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It took DailyKOS about two hours to ban me some years ago. I had responded to a story containing such obvious untruths as to be embarrassing to me just to be reading it. I think it was the oft-repeated claim that Republicans are rich, when most wealthy congresspersons happen to be Democrats. The result of this illumination tends to flip a switch and the next comment complains about poor Republicans sucking on the government teat, Red states consume more tax revenue than they produce.

    Anyway, I’d rather read “The Onion”. But I don’t read that either.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We live in a world reverting to the 19th Century, when the press was nakedly partisan, sensational, and referred to as the “yellow” press. In that time social Darwinism and racism were the dominant elite doctrines (actually strongly held by many “progressives”) and were peddled by the press. In our own day, multiculturalism and relativism are the dominant pseudo-doctrines and surveys show that journalists and their bosses are fully on board to a much larger extent than the general public. It took roughly a century for social Darwinism to be fully discredited. That’s a long time to wait.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. dpy6629 wrote: “It took roughly a century for social Darwinism to be fully discredited”

    It appears to be alive and well merely operating under different names. When Obama went on about taking the car keys away from Republicans he was sending a message that Democrats were wise, smart and Republicans foolish and for their own protection take away their car keys, more importantly, as if it was the Democrats right to do so. Commentary on almost any left wing blog shows the same pattern of assumed superiority.

    Darwinism cannot be escaped; the mistake is to presume upon its operation to your own benefit and detriment of others. Biological evolution takes a very long time to operate; social Darwinism operates on a time scale of one or two generations (IMO). It is social Darwinism that explains the benefits of religion; societies with religion tend to prosper as compared to those that do not (if you can find one that does not).

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Michael2, Social Darwinism was a disaster on every level. It was even cited in Supreme Court rulings benefiting the wealthy. In the hands of Margret Sanger it became the rationale for founding Planned Parenthood, which was really a tool to prevent the “proliferation” of the “bungled and botched” in the words of Nietzsche. There was never any evidence really to support it but it played into the deepest prejudices of the intellectual elites of the time. Progressives were particularly drawn to the doctrine as were malefactors of great wealth since it provided a rationale for why they had succeeded and others didn’t really matter.


  6. And Social Darwinism is a perfect example of the evils of pseudo-science being used as a guide to “policy” the favorite doctrine of our current intellectual elites.


  7. dpy6629 writes: “Progressives were particularly drawn to the doctrine as were malefactors of great wealth since it provided a rationale for why they had succeeded and others didn’t really matter.”

    Self serving, in other words, particularly when you define “success” as whatever you are and however you got there.

    I accept the existence of social Darwinism; selection of the fittest form of society. There’s also memetic Darwinism, survival of ideas that take root and kick out competing memes. The 97 percent meme is brilliant; it’s a prime number, not already taken for some other purpose (The 99 percent; nobody uses the 98 percent because it is “even” and even numbers simply don’t have the emotional kick of an odd number and “7” is particularly powerful; 7th day of creation, 7 on dice).

    Same with Mitt Romney’s 47 percent that won’t vote for him. Had he said 48 percent I doubt it would be memorable.

    Using any kind of Darwinism to justify one’s behavior seems irrelevant. Do it, or do it not. Maybe you are predisposed to behavior and maybe you are not; depends on who you ask and it seems forbidden to uncover the truth of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Loved the cartoon, but had to explain it to my better half. Strange that, and perhaps worthy of writing an academic paper (perhaps “THE CONCEPTUAL DOG CASTRATION CARTOON AS A SOCIAL CONSTRUCT: A SOKAL-STYLE ANALYSIS”). Should sail through peer review.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. dpy6629 wrote: “It took roughly a century for social Darwinism to be fully discredited”

    The only people who believe social Darwinism to be fully discredited are the same ‘Socialist’/’Progressive’ fools who proclaim that they do not believe in human nature.


  10. R., thanks—but wouldn’t I be copping flak if I were on target? Have you seen the length of the preceding article’s comments thread? That’s what I call nerve-touching, lady-doth-protest-too-much, close-to-bone-hitting crap-copping.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.