The Monday Morning Teaser

It’s always a dilemma for me when a Nothingburger story gets hot. If all I’m going to do is point out that this story doesn’t deserve the attention it’s getting, then I have become part of the problem: I’m drawing your attention to something that doesn’t deserve it.

The alternative is to go meta: Of all the Nothingburgers in the world, why has this one turned into a Big Mac? Who is pushing it? Why does it serve their purposes? How have they managed to distort it into something it’s not?

You’ve probably guessed where I’m going with this: Dr. Seuss. Mr. Potato Head. Some private companies did some completely innocuous rebranding, and the whole conservative media went wild. Hang on to the cat in your hat, because the “woke mob” is banning the icons of your childhood! “This is fascism!” Glenn Beck announced, as if piles of Green Eggs and Ham and plastic potato parts were being doused with lighter fluid and set aflame.

I couldn’t let that go, so I went meta. The featured post this week is “Silly Season in the Culture Wars”. First off, I’ll tell you something Tucker Carlson never will: exactly what happened and who did it. In particular, I won’t use “they” or “them” without an antecedent, as Trump Jr. did when he said, “They’re canceling Dr. Seuss.”

Then comes the meta part: Conservative media needs to invent outrages like this, because in the post-Trump world, they have no ideas to discuss. There was no 2020 Republican platform, there is no conservative legislative program, and they don’t even have a coherent critique of what Biden is proposing. If not for an endless series of outrages-of-the-week, they’d have a lot of dead air.

The form of an outrage-of-the-week is that liberals are trying to take something you love away from you: your guns, your job, your freedom, your son’s masculine identity, … something. So a story about liberals taking away your fond childhood memories fits right in. The fact that it isn’t true is just a detail to work around.

Anyway, that’s ready to post, so it should be out soon. The weekly summary then has the week’s actual news to cover: The Covid relief bill is getting close to Biden’s desk. Other important bills are in the pipeline, and the moment-of-truth on the Senate filibuster is approaching. Vaccinations are accelerating. Covid case-numbers have started going down again, but are still so high that Texas is crazy to end all restrictions. The Senate held hearings on the Capitol insurrection. Andrew Cuomo’s future is in serious doubt. Plus we have bioluminescent sharks, an excuse to link to my favorite Weird Al video, and one very enthusiastic beaver. I should have that out before noon.

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  • MB Gapinski  On March 8, 2021 at 9:03 am

    Let’s not forget The War on Christmas, the most prevalent holiday Nothingburger, that is trotted out yearly without fail!

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