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Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Third time's the charm on Texas redistricting

Last Friday, I predicted that Texas Gov. Rick Perry would call a third special session of the 78th Texas Legislature "for Monday, September 15."

Ta-da!  From today's Austin American-Statesman, we learn that "Republican Gov. Rick Perry has set high noon Monday for the start of the next legislative shootout over congressional boundary lines."

I'm patting myself on the back over getting this prediction right to the very day, but otherwise I'm in a sour mood — too sour to blog at any length tonight.  In fact, I'm going to stick the explanation for my mood into a "continuation," because I don't want to be reminded of it too frequently.

I'm too depressed after reading the back-and-forth sniping between Atrios and Tapped over "identity politics."  Specifically what depresses me is how, in the course of this "I'm holier than thou" pissing match between far left blogs, both sides can throw out casual accusations that everyone who supports legislative redistricting in Texas — what Atrios refers to as "the Texas redistrcting [sic] shenanigans" — is ipso facto a racist. 

Atrios tosses out a line like this:  "... in states like Texas and California where Fear of the Brown Horde is a steady theme of right wing politicians, it's odd to criticize the Brown Horde itself for uniting and standing up for itself."  No proof, no specific facts, no limit to the scope of who he's accusing, which at a minimum seems to include "[p]aranoid Texan politicians, from the House Majority Leader on down to the governor and the Texas Legislature." 

And nobody blogging or commenting on either website even blinks

Excuse me?  "Fear of the Brown Horde"?  As a "steady theme" of Texas Republicans?

This is so disgusting, I don't know how to even begin to address it.  It makes me angry, but it also makes me sad.  How can these people be so filled with spite and bile and corrosive venom?  I know that there are smart, articulate, and similarly delusional madmen at both far extremes of the political spectrum.  But the continuous smug condescension, the nonstop sarcasm, the casual bigotry that I read on Atrios' website literally sickens me.  If Atrios ever feels an instant of happiness or humor or love that's unconnected with insulting those who are even slightly to the political right of him, you couldn't tell it from reading his blog.  I can't imagine having a conversation with this fellow that wouldn't end with him literally spitting in my face. 

And yet he apparently has a huge following and commands the respect and admiration of a good chunk of the blogosphere.  About that, I'm just sad, not angry.

Well.  That's not at all what I meant to write about.

Posted by Beldar at 11:55 PM in Texas Redistricting | Permalink


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(1) Joshua made the following comment | Sep 10, 2003 8:55:58 AM | Permalink

Buck up, Beldar. Go consume some mass quantities and then read Mike Huemer on Why People Are Irrational About Politics (thanks to Volokh for the link). Of course, it might depress you more, but at least it ought to disabuse you of the notion that you ought to be able to expect better of people.

I happen to believe that even though being rational about politics and subjecting one's own biases to rigorous examination is a hard, uphill struggle, it's still one worth doing, and I count on your blog with its emphasis on the facts of the matter in things like the Texas redistricting battle to help me do it. So thank you, and keep on blogging.

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