Knight Of The Mind

I'll do my best to present a philosophical and generally conservative look at current events and life, the universe and everything. Readers are invited to take all that's posted herein with a grain of salt. or if they prefer, a grain of salt, a slice of lime and a shot of tequila.

Location: Alexandria, Virginia, United States

Greetings and welcome. My name is Steve, I'm 35 years old and I work for the US Army as an Operations Research Analyst. Hence my blog title Knight Of The Mind.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Susan Sontag: Priestess Of The Cult Of Anti-America

Susan Sontag's death brings grief and sadness to all those who were close to her and is thus a very sad occasion. It is only fitting to begin even this anti-eulogy with a proper expression of condolences to those stricken by her passage from the terrestrial vail of tears. So for those who loved Susan Sontag, I hope they find solace in their grief.

What looms sadder and more grievous than the attenuation of her lifespan is the meaning Susan Sontag gave to her life. If John Paul Sartre speaks the truth and we really become the summation of all that we do, than what Susan Sontag did to herself as a writer and a leading intellectual figure of the latter half of the 20th Century remains impardonable, even with her final demise.

Sontag pioneered the black art of intellectual anti-Americanism. More than Gertrude Stein, Earnest Hemingway or even Alan Ginsburg or William Burroughs, Sontag directed the American counterculture beyond the mere rejection of our nation's ideas. Stein and Hemingway may have expatriated themselves and Ginsberg and Burroughs may have drugged up and hit the road, but none of these prior countercultural figures actively rooted for the demise of modern America.

The four aforementioned rebellious figures certainly disliked some aspects of the America they lived in, but none spewed the bilous and conspicuous hatred for our people that tinged the vile writing of the late Susan Sontag. Her extant works mark a point of divergence and crossover from America's previous countercultural figures. Earnest Hemingway certainly opposed and hated the entire concept of war and probably felt the US lacked any justification for engaging in high intensity combat even with Hitler, but he drew a line at denigrating the mean who actually wore our uniform.

Sontag perhaps combined a certain ideological courage with her hatred. Her essay following the attacks of 9/11 is a hate America first screed for the ages. Richard Grenier recorded her vituperations in one of his columns so that future generations could truly understand intellectual hatred and national self-loathing when they read it. Her aspersions follow below.

The disconnect between last Tuesday's monstrous dose of reality and the self-righteous drivel and outright deceptions being peddled by public figures and TV commentators is startling, depressing. The voices licensed to follow the event seem to have joined together in a campaign to infantilize the public.

There is the acknowledgment that this was not a "cowardly" attack on "civilization" or "humanity" or "the free world" but an attack on the world's self-proclaimed superpower, undertaken as a consequence of specific American alliances and actions? How many citizens are aware of the ongoing bombing of Iraq?

And if the word "cowardly" is to be used, it might be more aptly applied to those who kill from beyond the range of retaliation, high in the sky, than to those willing to die themselves in order to kill others. In the matter of courage (a morally neutral virtue) whatever may be said of the perpetrators of Tuesday's slaughter, they were not cowards. -World Net Daily

Sontag's fulminations over 9/11 were not the first instance in which she rooted for America's enemies the way good Catholics from Indiana root for Notre Dame. John Miller of NRO offers us some other examples of insight from Susan Sontag.

On John McCain's torturers: "The North Vietnamese genuinely care about the welfare of hundreds of captured American pilots and give them bigger rations than the Vietnamese population gets."

On Castro's Cuba: "The Cubans know a lot about spontaneity, gaiety, sensuality, and freaking out. The increase of energy comes because they have found a new focus for it: community."

On red-state America, circa 1969: "To us, it is self-evident that the Readers Digest and Lawrence Welk and Hilton Hotels are organically connected with the Special Forces' napalming villages in Guatemala." - The Corner on NRO.

So there you have what so many intellectual Americans pay tribute to. A woman who hated her country, revered it's mortal enemies, cheered when thousands of our citizens were slaughtered and deemed the American people somewhat psuedosapient in their belief in all that she personally despised. Sontag may no longer walk the verdant fields of Earth, but the ideology she abetted continues to pollute our culture and politics.

Perhaps the next time DC101 blasts "American Idiot" by Green Day, a tip of the cap is order to Susan Sontag who articulated the philosophical premise behind the punk rock drivel. Every time I hear that song I wish the idiots in Green Day would catch the next cab to San Francisco's international airport.

There they could book transport to one of the other 161 nations of the world and decrement that country's average IQ with their presence rather than ours. At least then they would have their wish of no longer being American idiots. Susan Sontag has left us at last. It is time for Noam Chomsky, Howard Dean, MoveOn.Gore members, and the caterwauling cranks of Green Day to do likewise. The friendly skies do beckon , unless 21 more terrorists display the late Susan Sontag's version of courage, which she found until the end to be morally neutral.

Update I: Little Green Footballs also notes the passing of our intellectual enemy. They do, however, find her defense of Salmon Rushdie somewhat redeeming. Perhaps fair is fair and no person can really be completly evil.

Update II: Leather Penguin won't be sending a bouquet to her funeral.


As you may or may not already be aware, members of the Watcher's Council hold a vote every week on what they consider to be the most link-worthy pieces of writing around... per the Watcher's instructions, I am submitting one of my own posts for consideration in the upcoming nominations process.
Here is the most recent winning council post, here is the most recent winning non-council post, here is the list of results for the latest vote, and here is the initial posting of all the nominees that were voted on.

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