Jonah Goldberg On Kathleen Parker’s “G-O-D” Shame

by Melissa Clouthier | November 19, 2008 11:55 am

Kathleen Parker[1] revealed her hip happeningness yet again today:

As Republicans sort out the reasons for their defeat, they likely will overlook or dismiss the gorilla in the pulpit.

Three little letters, great big problem: G-O-D.

I’m bathing in holy water as I type.

To be more specific, the evangelical, right-wing, oogedy-boogedy branch of the GOP is what ails the erstwhile conservative party and will continue to afflict and marginalize its constituents if reckoning doesn’t soon cometh.

Simply put: Armband religion is killing the Republican Party. And, the truth — as long as we’re setting ourselves free — is that if one were to eavesdrop on private conversations among the party intelligentsia, one would hear precisely that.

Jonah Goldberg[2] responds by saying, “Quit it. Kathleen”:

I don’t know what’s more grating, the quasi-bigotry that has you calling religious Christians low brows, gorillas and oogedy-boogedy types or the bravery-on-the-cheap as you salute — in that winsome way — your own courage for saying what (according to you) needs to be said. Please stop bragging about how courageous you are for weathering a storm of nasty email you invite on yourself by dancing to a liberal tune. You aren’t special for getting nasty email, from the right or the left. You aren’t a martyr smoking your last cigarette. You’re just another columnist, talented and charming to be sure, but just another columnist. You are not Joan of the Op-Ed Page. Perhaps the typical Washington Post reader (or editor) doesn’t understand that. But you should, and most conservatives familiar with these issues can see through what you’re doing.

Besides being patronizing and noting a problem (which has at its core a very debatable premise), Ms. Parker lacks solutions. In part, I agree with her assessment about the God talk,[3] but her obvious prejudice, and that of her media pals is an even bigger problem[4] for Republicans. That is to say, that the description Ms. Parker writes of conservative Christians is a classic caricature and reveals her ignorance of the diversity that makes up that constituency. Because of her narrow-mindedness, she cannot formulate helpful solutions for addressing this typically Republican voting block. Likewise, it is obvious that the Republicans, and the conservative movement generally need to reach other constituencies–ones who tend to vote Democrat.


Perhaps Ms. Parker could gather her formidable wit and way with words and formulate a solution rather than destroy what isn’t really a problem. Dehumanizing, demeaning, and really, demonizing the whole base of the Republican party seems counter-productive for someone who is in the same party. When the foundation crumbles, the house will fall on Ms. Parker, too. Unless, of course, she’s really not part of the house anymore, if she ever was, and has already moved in spirit (and one could say, in body, considering her employer) to another home. If that’s the case, she should admit to herself and to her readers her new home.

David Frum, Kathleen Parker, Chris Buckley, David Brooks and the rest, have become experts at demolition. They need to refocus their efforts and consider what it will take to rebuild their house. Or have they already moved and don’t know it?

Cross-posted at[5]

  1. Kathleen Parker:
  2. Jonah Goldberg:
  3. God talk,:
  4. an even bigger problem:

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