Glenn Greenwald has a new book (congrats) and a new post titled "The Importance of Speaking In Inflated, Absurd Generalities" (note to self - might want to double-check that).
Like every other idea Greenwald has ever written, uttered, or thought, his latest post is long on generalizations and short on evidence. I have noticed that this propensity to leap past facts to untenable conclusions is typical of all lefties with a "G" in their name - it has something to do with "Generalizations" and "G", or at least, that is my current theory until I think of a new one.
Do you suspect me of having a pre-disposition in this tussle? My own ghastly history with Greenwald started with his notion that Bush followers are Authoritarian Cultists.
I mocked it, mocked it again, finally got a reply, and mocked that. We do have our fun around here! Greenwald scaled the comic heights when he explained that James Taranto and myself were engaged in "intellectual cowardice" by deferring judgment until we saw some evidence. Evidently in Greenwald's corner of the Reality Based Community, facts are for cowards.
As to the "Authoritarian Cultist" theme itself - the Republican Dubai rebellion overtook it, and it became clear that the cult in question couldn't extend much beyond George, Karl, Laura, and *maybe* the twins.
As to the broader question - sure, generalizations are inevitable. Hyperbolic generalizations are optional. But for a certain type of market appeal, they are a great option.
Decision '08 has similar thoughts on Greenwald's screedifying. For folks who have not been following the links, here is a proto-typical bit of Greenwaldian "analysis":
As much as anything else, Bush defenders are characterized by an increasingly absolutist refusal to recognize any facts which conflict with their political desires, and conversely, by a borderline-religious embrace of any assertions which bolster those desires. It’s a world-view which conflates desire with reality, disregards all facts and evidence that conflict with the decreed beliefs, and faithfully embraces any assertions and fantasies, no matter how baseless and flagrantly false, provided that they bolster the mythology.
Yeah, yeah, yeah - when that is set to music, it will go to Number One - wth a bullet.