The Politics of Dooce

Heather Armstrong is an extremely successful blogger (so successful that her husband quit his job to be a part of her venture -- plus they have two small children to care for).

Her blog is called Dooce. It's one of those "mommy blogs" where you essentially follow along in the life of Heather Armstrong. It's like a giant soap opera, I guess -- pointless drivel that people who have nothing better to do eat up. And kudos to Armstrong for making a living at it. Smart girl. She's a capitalist all the way around.

But don't tell that to Ms. Armstrong. I don't think she'd care for that label. Here's an example of one of her posts (from last year):

I am angry. I am infuriated. And I don't think I would be if Sarah Palin were a qualified or competent choice as McCain's running mate. But the fact, the reality is that she is not. And instead of demanding better from their party, instead of going, wait a minute, no, we deserve better than this, many Republicans are contorting themselves into a denial of reality. And that right there is what has been going on for the last eight years.

And I am just so damn sick of it.

Any time I engage with one of my conservative friends or family members, or sometimes the conservative commenters on this website, it usually devolves into them screaming about WELFARE! and TAXES! and THE GOVERNMENT IS TAKING MY MONEY AND GIVING IT TO PEOPLE WHO DON'T WORK! And what they don't understand is that this is not the issue at all. What I and many of my more liberal friends want is to HELP people, not give them a free ride, but also not to ignore those who would benefit from us tossing them a life jacket.

If giving up more of my paycheck could help get a family adequate healthcare, then PLEASE. TAKE MY FUCKING MONEY.

I get the feeling that people around the world are looking at this election as a gauge to see if America is finally ready to wake up and realize that we are not the only country on this planet. They are waiting to see if we are going to put yet another fundamentalist loon in charge of public and foreign policy, someone who doesn't think that global warming is in any way caused by humans, so screw the rest of you who live here on this planet, we need that cup of oil with breakfast in the morning.

To my readers who do not live in America, who are not American, please know that there are so many of us here who are disgusted with what we have let happen in the last eight years and are doing everything we can to ensure that it stops. We are just as scared as you are of those around us who have their fingers in their ears and are going LA LA LA LA LA in an attempt to convince themselves that their behavior and their policies are not in direct violation of the teachings of the God they think put them in power.

Needless to say, the vast majority of readers agree with Armstrong -- which is fine. It's a free country. Of course, like Armstrong, none of them say anything of substance. Instead they all read like this: "Yeah! I'm so mad, too! Whenever I get near my Republican friends and family, I can't talk because I'll explode!"

Dear Ms. Armstrong and Followers:

Your portrayal of conservatives is sadly misguided. I am sorry for whatever political education you've received; perhaps you're confusing your Mormon upbringing with conservatism. Rather than being defiant, you should attempt a mature, well-researched defense of modern liberalism (if you can find one).

The problem with arguments like yours is that there is no argument. Your writing is entirely based on emotion. There is no reason, logic, or common sense. It's an emotional reaction you're having -- and it's the emotional appeal you make to get your message across. For example:

"What I and many of my more liberal friends want is to HELP people, not give them a free ride, but also not to ignore those who would benefit from us tossing them a life jacket. If giving up more of my paycheck could help get this family adequate healthcare, then PLEASE. TAKE MY FUCKING MONEY."

The idea that liberals want to help people because they're kind and conservatives don't care about helping people because they're mean is an extremely childish and shortsighted view of political philosophy. What you need to do to prove your case is explain how the policies you support will, in fact, help people. Just saying you care doesn't cut it. You hit the nail on the head when you wrote "If giving up more of my paycheck could help..." That's precisely the point: It won't help. It simply helps you feel like a good person.

If you're interested in boning up on the facts, there are scores of books that can help you. If you want to look honestly at your bias toward conservatives, may I suggest Why You're Wrong about the Right? by S.E.Cupp and Brett Joshpe.

Or you could just click on No Bull Mom every day.

TOMORROW: The Truth about Tolerance

2 Responses to “The Politics of Dooce”:

  1. Terro says:

    How wonderful that Dooce wants the government to take her "f________ money" to provide healthcare for those who are without adequate care for one reason or another.

    Apparently, not every liberal is so generous...i.e. note the incredible number of this administration's nominees who haven't paid or who have underpaid their taxes.

    From Fox Business News this morning...

    December 2, 2009 09:33 AM EST
    Growing Tax Problems of the Obama Nominees
    The number of nominees with tax problems that the White House has presented to Congress for various government posts has grown, as even more officials up for appointment to the Treasury Dept., which oversees the IRS, have been ensnared. Media reports have it at four, others at five, ever since Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner’s own tax problems almost scuttled his own appointment. Actual number: The list has grown to nine. And it has mushroomed at a time when the Obama Administration has created record deficits, as it has passed a $3.5 trillion budget, a $787 billion stimulus package, and as it attempts to pass ... read more

  2. Anonymous says:

    my letter to Mrs. Armstrong -
    If anybody is in denial it is liberals. Obama and his crew are running this country into the ground, taking liberties with the office, and illegally usurping the congress. People have less "hope" now than ever befofe and the "change" he has brought has been for the worse.
    So you want to help people, that is great! That's the beauty of this country, my dear, you can give away your entire paycheck if you so chose. You do not, however, have the right, nor does the govt, to give away my money. If you were familiar with our Constitution, you would know that.
    Generally, Americans, particularly Christians, are very generous, much more so than other countries. When I give away my hard earned money, I should be able to say to whom it goes.
    You make some reference to readers in other countries? They have nothing to do with what we do in this country. They do not live under a republic, as we do and they do not understand our Constitution.
    Didn't you get the FYI that the whole man-made global warming theory is a sham and they have been covering that up? Again, get educated, lady. You can continue on with your emototional rants that have no fact basis or you can educate yourself with regard to our Constitution and the Principals of Liberty laid out by our Founding Fathers. They warned us of this type of socialist president trying to turn the country into a big govenment run, welfare state. Get a clue liberals!