Monday, April 30, 2007

Dan Simpson Against The World

Well, well, well. It looks like the rest of the world has discovered what I have known for over two years now: That Pittsburgh Psychosis-Gazette editor and columnist (formerly U.S. ambassador to several African and Middle Eastern nations) Dan Simpson is a raving loony. His weekly opinion pieces usually resolve around foreign affairs, and are characterized by anger and hatred directed at the current President of the United States, George W. Bush, and Republicans in general. (The discerning reader can also detect his tone in the paper's unsigned editorials dealing with Bush administration foreign policy.) At one time, Simpson's screeds provided me with ripe-for-the-picking Wednesday morning blog fodder. I got bored with him after a while. Why bother reading something when I know it's just going to piss me off? That's why I don't pay for newspapers anymore.

The column that has set the blogosphere ablaze ran in the P-G's sister publication, the Toledo Blade, last week, and appeared in this past Sunday's Pittsburgh paper. To sum up, Simpson outlines a plan for disarming the American public in order to prevent another massacre like the recent Virginia Tech shooting. The column has been analyzed to death by worthier bloggers than I, so I won't pick it apart here.

I should have been on this last week, but I didn't find out about it until Saturday afternoon when Mitch and Captain Ed were discussing it on the NARN show. (Audio archive should be available here soon.) They did a fine job of picking apart every aspect of Simpson's proposal. Some have suggested that it was clever satire. I hold that it was neither clever nor satire. Dan Simpson has not demonstrated a sense of humor in the past, and I doubt that he would suddenly become a comedian now. People take him seriously (at least they did before last week.)

Almost everyone, that is. There's another Pittsburgh daily that frequently takes exception to his columns. For the most part, the Tribune-Review is our last outpost of sanity in the southwestern PA media. That is the paper to read here.

Dan Simpson, meanwhile, is reason enough for any subscriber to stop doing business with both the Blade and the P-G.

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