Squaring the Culture

"...and I will make justice the plumb line, and righteousness the level;
then hail will sweep away the refuge of lies,
and the waters will overflow the secret place."
Isaiah 28:17

08/11/2009 (8:09 am)

Well Dressed Men

I’m back in “writing” mode for a few days, having to finish up the “Miracles” thing, but while you’re waiting for more incisive commentary on culture (how I do flatter myself!), here’s an entertaining lampoon of Barbara Boxer’s silly “well dressed protesters” comment.

Naturally, how a person is dressed is not a predictor of what sort of political connections he or she has. However, this just emphasizes how utterly silly Boxer’s complaint was. She was trying very, very hard to tie the town hall/tea party phenomenon to leftist delusions regarding the 2000 election in Florida, where Democrats created the illusion that Republicans stole the election, whereas in reality it was Democrats who tried but failed to steal an election they knew they had lost. She beclowned herself. I have a hard time taking Barbara Boxer seriously as anything but a junket-loving, graft-gulping Valley Girl, though I’m sure she’s got her dangerous, vindictive side.

In related news, Patterico has the definitive take-down of Nancy Pelosi’s and Steny Hoyer’s execrable accusation that town hall protesters are “un-American.” It seems that Ms. Pelosi has used “un-American” quite a few times, while vocally approving far more disruptive tactics from the left as “protected.” Like incipient racism, this sort of anti-intellectual resort to mindless jimgoism needs properly to be recognized as the common foible of leading Democrats, who use it far more, and far more unsoundly, than any respectable Republican ever has.

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August 11, 2009 @ 11:44 am #

You know, their comment about being too “well dressed” brings up another thing that is sad about these days- the fact that the level of dress has gone steeply downhill since the 50’s.

You take a look at any picture from the 30’s or 40’s, no matter what season it is, and most men are wearing a suit.

I do not have as much trouble with the change in women’s fashion, simply because that is mostly a change of style, not of intent.

As an example, we had a company wide seminar that most of management went to. All of the higher ups were to be there and it was at a local hotel meeting hall. I instantly figured “dress casual”, so I went with a button shirt and set of khakis. I deliberated over wearing a tie, but thought it might be too much. I was right, I had at least three people come up to me and say they did not realize we were supposed to “dress up”.

There is something in this that speaks to a loss of self respect. Not just a loss in how you want the world to see you, but also how you see yourself.

It also seems to me to be more than just a change of fashion.

Sorry if this is not exactly the point of the post.

August 11, 2009 @ 1:05 pm #

Name calling is the typical juvenile response when there is nothing of substance to say in response.

August 11, 2009 @ 1:52 pm #

Horatius, I agree that standards in dress have fallen. I work at a small chemical firm, and I’m wearing shorts and a T-shirt right now. In fact, I wear T-shirts everywhere, including to church. I almost never vary my “wardrobe”. I suppose this may say something about me that is unflattering, but I have always felt uncomfortable being dressed up, as we used to say. I like the new standards, although I can see your point, and may even agree with it entirely.

August 12, 2009 @ 11:16 am #

Re the dress standards thing. Good point – and actually not off topic in this sense, I think: Chris’ comment reflects the standards of many of today’s workers. You’re at work, you want to be comfortable. So – who wears suits? Politicians. Suits are their work “uniform”.

Hence Boxer’s comments – they’re too well dressed. She’s confusing the political uniform with a generation gap – many of those attending these meetings are the average joe who’s well over 50, and by the dress standards they were raised with, they wear “Sunday go to meeting clothes” when they go somewhere official like a town hall meeting. It’s a “meeting”. But Boxer is accustomed to the casual dress of today – where a suit or dress is part of the “uniform”. So she assumes that therefore, the people in suits and ties, and dresses are also politicians of some sort. Republican politicians, I assume, since SEIU definitely doesn’t come in suits. They’re the _real_ grassroots, you see!

In other words, it’s a class difference we’re seeing expressed.

August 12, 2009 @ 12:46 pm #

A very good point suek.

Do you think that also gives a bit of insight into how Boxer views the “commoners”? I.e. commoners must be slobs. The huddled, unwashed masses?

Sad really.

August 12, 2009 @ 5:29 pm #

>>Do you think that also gives a bit of insight into how Boxer views the “commoners”?>>

Certainly a possibility. To be honest, we were assigned to Germany for some 4 years in the late 60s, early 70s. I remember when we came back that I was shocked at the state of “undress” of Americans as they went about everyday life. I don’t remember if the difference was one of having forgotten how Americans normally dressed, or if it was just a cultural thing because the Germans were always a bit more formal. You have to remember that Boxer is from the San Fran area of California, and maybe that’s a part of it. You have the people with class, and you have the slobs who frequent the streets generally. Maybe not so many in the middle.

But to actually answer your question – yes. I think she’s a snob.

August 14, 2009 @ 2:20 pm #

“Boxer is from the San Fran area of California, and maybe that’s a part of it.”

Your words are truer than you think. I live in CA, in the Central (bring water) Valley and she considers this part of CA to be backwoods farm serfs.

Word has it that her poll numbers are dropping here in CA. Hopefully we can get her and Pelosi out. They truly embarrass me as a Californian.

August 14, 2009 @ 4:52 pm #

I don’t think it’s possible to get Pelosi out. Boxer, maybe.

There was something on the radio yesterday about Obama and assassination…I’ve forgotten what it was. I remarked to my husband that if I were inclined to such violence, I’d go for Pelosi, not Obama. Too much protection for Obama, and he’s only likely to be in for the 4 years. Pelosi could be there indefinitely. My husband said something to the effect of “she’s not really that smart, she’s just a b*tch” or some such. He may be right about the smarts, but whatever it is that she’s got – even if it’s just a little black book of destruction on each HR member – it’s too much. And those idiots in San Fran are just _not_ ever going to vote for anyone else as long as she runs.

Congress is more powerful than the Pres, these days…like in the old cowboy and indian movies – always shoot the leader first!

August 14, 2009 @ 5:35 pm #

I think what you heard on the radio about Obama assassination is probably this:


Atwater, is just 20 min. North of me…
Not sure how I stand on it. He certainly shouldn’t have been using city email to send this crap, but on the other hand entertainers get paid to say far worse things…

August 15, 2009 @ 12:26 am #

Rather than speculating about violence done to political figures, maybe it would be better to simply wish that one or the other could simply be thrown out of office. Unfortunately, no one ever seems to get thrown out of office for stupidity (if we did, really how many politicians would we have left?)

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