Kausfails

10Apr10

Heh:

“I wake up every morning and say, ‘Why am I doing this again?’ And then I remember,” Kaus told me over the weekend. “I’d carved out a stress-free life for myself—and this is not that.”

Hyperbole or not, I’d say this is just about everything wrong with the American media distilled into one statement. For those who don’t know, Mickey Kaus is a blogger for Slate, who wrote and beefed with Andrew Sullivan during the New Republic of the early 90s. The famously liberal magazine, under Sullivan’s tenure, rebelled against traditional Democratic politics. Sullivan even published a story by Betsy McCaughey against Bill Clinton’s health care proposals, although it’d later be revealed that McCaughey was on the payroll of big tobacco, who would have been taxed under Clinton’s proposals. She’s also known for finding the non-existent death panels in Obama’s bill, which Sarah Palin pushed so gleefully.

Anyway, Kaus blames unions for just about all of the country’s economic problems, and believes that rounding up and booting out all 12million+ illegal immigrants will solve the remaining discrepancies. He decided to challenge Barbara Boxer in a Democratic primary for Senate, on what appears to be a whim. He knew he had no chance, and claimed his goal was to appear in an attack ad.

The fact that he finds running for office so challenging is one issue. It shows he never really paid attention or covered in-depth any political campaign, let alone one as important as a Senate race. It’s hard to take seriously someone whose been in the industry for over 20 years and does not appreciate the difficulties of a running for office, let alone from the position of an outsider. But more importantly, he’s a writer with an enormous platform in Slate.

For what it’s worth, I get very nervous before I put up a post here. I fear that one of my Facebook friends is going to call me out on some unforgivable inaccuracy. I think some more prominent blogger will come across a post here and humiliate me, literally, in front of the rest of the world. I guess that’s largely paranoia, but I’ve had some incredible comments left here, some critical, some neutral, some in praise. In many cases I don’t know how it happens, but it does, and it makes me realize just how accessible even a WordPress blog is.

So the fact that Mickey found his life as a blogger “stress-free” is troubling. He is read by thousands of people a day, and apparently does not give a damn what any of them think. He doesn’t care how many times he’s called out in the Atlantic, or the National Review, or the New Republic, or even his colleagues at Slate. He shows up, writes stuff to get page views, collects his pay check, and spends the rest of the day doing whatever he wants. He’s running for Senate now, and  he’s finding out how other people’s opinions matter, and I’m sure that must be very hard for him.

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