Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Politics, Polls, and Polar Bears

Paul the Spud (Shakespeare's Sister) is justifiably saddened by the plight of polar bears. As the earth heats up, the ice floes break up, and the bears have to compete for declining real estate and diminishing resources: "Not only won't they have anywhere to stand, they're also unable to find food."

It's a little like living in Manhattan, but many New Yorkers can and do move off the island or away from the city altogether. Folks in the Big Apple, however, are not yet this desperate:
Polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea may be turning to cannibalism because longer seasons without ice keep them from getting to their natural food, a new study by American and Canadian scientists has found.
But one doesn't have to travel all the way to the Arctic Circle to witness this sort of heartbreaking and gruesome behavior.

Instead, one can just visit any of a number of right-wing blogs, where pajama-clad pundits and virtual-reality chickenhawks have begun feasting on each other. In recent months, they've chewed up and spat out a smorgasbord of former heroes--including such tasty morsels as Michael "Heckuva Job" Brown, Katharine Harris, and even His Eminence George W. himself.

The most recent delicacy served up at the Neocon Cafe is, believe it or not, Ann Coulter. According to a diarist at Daily Kos, other members of her species have begun to smother her with A-1 sauce.

Coulter's antics are hardly anything new; as Digby says (providing plenty of examples), she's been spewing crank-enhanced invective for years, "saying the most vile things imaginable and making a good profit at it." Yet, suddenly, a veritable pack of omnivorous Ursus timidus are distancing themselves from the Ice Queen's latest attacks on September 11 widows.
So what has precipitated this new wingnut sensitivity? Republican popularity, that's what. That's when the movement starts casting its dead weight overboard.
Things are heating up for the right, and their little islands of ice are gradually shrinking. (For conservatives, of course, this will inevitably mean that women and children will be tossed out first.) And this is bad news for someone like Ann:
When someone becomes a bother they are no longer conservative --- no matter that you've spent your whole life doing exactly the same disgusting thing to great acclaim by all these people. You've been voted off the island.
An increasing number of the GOP's paunchiest have a message for the Ice Queen: go get your own floe. It's the inevitable bottom line of the moral calculus we call Coulter's Crystal Methematics.

There is, of course, one major and obvious ethical difference between what's happening to the polar bears and what's happening to their equally white primate counterparts:

I feel sorry for the polar bears.