Smelling Salts Watch

SMELLING SALTS WATCH….First a confession: I’m a little weary of grown men and women pretending that they don’t understand the power of profanity in written communication. I happen to be a fan of it myself, but I’m also mindful of the widely noted fact that most people consider it vulgar, shrill, and juvenile, and that it’s hard to be taken seriously if you use it relentlessly. Crackpots haranguing the onlookers at Speakers’ Corner and all that. This will undoubtedly change when the revolution comes, but in the meantime I think we’re all pretty well aware of how things work in the actual world in which we live. Right?

OK, fine. That said, is there anything more ridiculous than some wingnut counting up the number of alleged vulgarities on right-wing and left-wing blogs in order to prove…..what? Hard to say, though apparently “Yowsers” is the appropriate response.

But as it turns out, there is something more ridiculous than that: a wingnut who can’t even count the vulgarities properly. Scott Eric Kaufman, probably in an attempt to procrastinate on his doctoral research, ran the numbers himself and it looks like the wingnut is off by about a factor of ten. Plus he’s counting comments, but fails to notice that most big right-wing blogs don’t allow comments. And even if you think comments are fair game, a lot of comment vulgarity is from spam.

What’s even worse, though, is that the wingnut didn’t include me in his research. Am I chopped liver? Not at all: Political Animal delivers 6,130 vulgarities over its lifetime. Not bad! Most of it doesn’t come from me, of course, since I know my mother reads this blog, but apparently my commenters are a bunch of pottymouths. Shame on you.

On the bright side, this gives me an excuse to reprint my favorite political quote of recent years. It’s from Sir Richard Mottram, a British civil servant, commenting on a particularly embarrassing PR fiasco:

We’re all fucked. I’m fucked. You’re fucked. The whole department is fucked. It’s the biggest cock-up ever. We’re all completely fucked.

Get that man a blog! And this guy too.