They’re a year behind me in noticing, but some prominent liberals are starting to raise the “mission accomplished” banner, declaring the culture war over — even as they concede it isn’t “WON won” (because nothing’s ever really over, is it?).
Over at the DailyKos, Markos Moulitsas posits the not-so-absurd theory that this realization amongst conservatives explains why so many they “seem to carry perpetual grievances.”
To his credit, Moulitsas takes pity on his vanquished enemies. And interestingly, he seems to concede the cultural turpitude his side’s “victory” has already wrought:
For a crowd that flinches at any notion of sex [he's talking about conservatives], it’s gotta be impossible to escape sexual imagery, from advertising to media to Miley Cyrus’ latest whatever-the-hell she is doing. And seriously, don’t listen to song lyrics. I flinched hearing my six-year-old daughter sing along with Flo Rida’s “Whistle.” She was too little to understand what that song was really about, but at some point, she will. I’m not the kind of parent overly concerned with “protecting” her from that sort of thing, but if you are, it’s a tough world out there.
*CNN TV PITCH IDEA: Markos and I star in a remake of Grumpy Old Men (Call me!)…
This strikes me as telling. One would expect Moulitsas to boast about how the triumph of liberalism will provide a chance to offer Americans universal healthcare — or for more kids to go to better schools — or…whatever.
Instead, the most vivid example he can muster is moral degradation in the popular culture (and the implicit exploitation of young women by a music industry selling us sex and consumerism).
At least give him credit for recognizing that culture is more important than politics — and that politics will eventually follow the culture. Still, it seems like an awfully hollow victory. I’m left wondering what it was all for.
So liberalism won the culture war, and all we got was this lousy t-shirt?