Thursday, November 04, 2004

Paul Wells has left the building

Babble on.

Over at Shenanigans awhile back, I opined that Paul Wells at his best was my favourite Canadian columnist (please note that I don't include Mark Steyn in that category; there is a difference between being a columnist in Canada, and being a Canadian columnist - Steyn is the former, not the latter).

Unfortuntately, Paul is not at his best right now. And I'm not just saying that because he was hoping for a Kerry victory. Sullivan was hoping for a Kerry victory, and he's been as readable as ever. No, I'm disappointed with Wells for allowing his writing to deteriorate into a complete and utter shambles. It's embarrassing. Yes, this is the pot calling the kettle black, but I sell insurance for a living people, not my written opinions. I expect Wells to write better than I do because he's a better writer, for heaven's sake.

His recent blog entry on the Democrats' defeat is particularly poor. Angry Paul works; bummed Paul doesn't. You know we're in for some cheap prose when he starts off recycling unclever Bush-won-it's-the-end-of-the-world hyperbole:

"...the results are in. Bullets, please, and save one for me for after I log off..."

My shoulders slump, but I continue reading out of loyalty and a misguided hope the piece will improve. It does not.

The majestic Howard Dean coalition — youth, new voters, the "wired," the "disenfranchised" — remains the France of electoral coalition-building: genuinely useful, if only it would freaking show up for the freaking fight.

This from the man who short weeks ago penned these words about France-bashers in the media:

It would be just swell if the editorialists at the Globe and Mail would resist the urge to write patronizing crap about France. opposed to Wells' patronizing words of wisdom about France we're left to presume. The descent continues.

So the next time some candidate enjoys a surge of popularity among Hitherto Disenfranchised Urban Youth — especially if he claims an advantage among cell-phone users and bloggers — bet heavy against him. He's dooooooooooomed.

I guess Paul didn't get the CBS/Democratic Party memo that outlines precisely how blogs are eeeeeeeeeeevil (if he can use that many o's, I can use that many e's) puppets of the Rove White House:

DAN RATHER: One would expect that the blogging machine which the White House and the Bush-Cheney campaign has used for any number of purposes over their four years will start now, if it hasn't started already, to say, listen, Kerry-Edwards, for the good of the country, need to concede.

ED BRADLEY: I'm sure it's started already. If we could tune into the Internet we'd see that people are already saying that now. That's certainly the drum the White House is beating. (thanks to Shamrocks)

I wonder how many conservative cell-phone-owning bloggers voted in both the Canadian and U.S. elections this year Paul? When is the real commentary coming? Should I even bother continuing? What the hell, I'm getting close to the end.

Bush has pursued an unpopular war and a ruinous economic policy — cheered on, especially in the latter course, by people who used to claim they were against fiscal irresponsibility when it was practised by Canadian Liberals — and, if democracy is to have any meaning, the only lesson he can take from this election is that he must continue unimpeded in both pursuits.

I should have followed my better instincts and stopped while I was behind. So "if democracy is to have any meaning" I can't vote for a guy who's right on one issue of overwhelming importance, but wrong on another of slightly lesser weight because "the only lesson he can that he must continue unimpeded in both pursuits?" Hunh? My first-year logic professor would have chased me from the lecture hall with a yardstick if I'd tried to pass that sort of garbage off on him. Who are you, and what have you done with Paul Wells?

Lastly - and I sincerely hope I won't years from now point to this as the moment Wells jumped the damned shark - he serves up this steaming, fetid Howard Dean impersonation:

Mark Steyn threatened, in his Spectator column, to quit writing if he was wrong in his prediction of a Bush victory. I don't ever want Mark to quit writing, but I had hoped he would continue because he had reconsidered, not that he would continue because he was right in predicting a Bush victory. Arrrgh, is all I can say.

Really. A professional writer, and that's all you can say. Horsefeathers. I've seen what you can say, and "Arrrgh" doesn't cut it, buddy (with apologies to John and Dusty, who generally have plenty to say).

Next time, Paul, do me a favour and start with the primal roar. We'll have it be our own private code that lets me know you have nothing of value to share today, and I won't have to waste so much time reading uninspired pap.

Babble off.


At 6:01 p.m., Blogger Doug said...

I'm still waiting for my check from Rove. He makes a great offer, but trying to chisel it loose is donkeywork.

Maybe I can tuck away a little dosh in the meantime showing Ed bradley how to "tune into the internet". Hourly for sure, I'd get killed on flat rate.

At 6:13 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

Judging by the octagenarian appearance of the CBS anchor desk on election night, I can see why the prospect of logging on to the Internet was such a daunting task. Bradley, Rather, Bob Schieffer, Leslie Stahl! Talk about the living dead! I'll bet the heat was cranked up to about 85 F in there, and they were still cold.

At 7:12 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...


It's his blog for Heaven's sake. Lighten up.

At 2:06 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


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