Sean Penn, sliced and diced
One of the most ridiculous public figures of our age, Sean Penn, should have great utility for conservatives. He exemplifies the incoherence of the Hollywood Left, and doesn't know when to keep his mouth shut. Even better, he thinks that he can write - that his stream of consciousness, when transcribed, makes sense, and is even persuasive.
Michael Moynihan, writing in the Daily Beast (not exactly part of the vast right wing conspiracy), examines the thoughts of Chairman Sean, and nudges along the process of making Penn into a laughingstock.
Reading Penn's journalism is not unlike consuming a Castro speech: it's unbearably long, always rambling and tedious, and frequently incoherent. Take this latest dispatch from Penn's Huffington Post blog, where he coughs up this furball: "Ostreicher, whose innocence was maligned by an arrest where only vague illusions to money laundering have been shown to be fabricated by corrupt officials within the Bolivian judiciary, whose motivation has proven to be extortion."
Or how about this stew of words, which is apparently related to the shootings in Newtown, Conn.: "This can, and is, being very easily exampled with newly invigorated discussions with attention on the recognition and treatment of mental health, and certainly that is a priority. And to be responsible to that priority, we too have to recognize its applicability to the mental health of our American community at large."
It's difficult to improve upon the brutal verdict of New Yorker writer George Packer, who wondered why "someone like Penn think[s] he can do this job [journalism], which isn't his job?" Criticizing his sycophantic dual profile of Castro and Chavez, published in The Nation, Packer concluded that "Perhaps because he can write down and relay the words of famous people to whom his own fame gives him access, and because certain thoughts pass through his mind while he's writing them down."
While the media occasionally give Castro and Chavez a rough time, Penn might acknowledge that they play slow-pitch softball with him. Bill Maher didn't flinch-or ask a followup question-when he demanded journalists be sent to the gulag for questioning Chavez's democratic bona fides.
The entire essay is rewarding and even thought provoking at times, so do take the time to follow the link.
The Alynskyite Left has long used the careless words of conservatives they wish to demonize as an effective tool in creating a negative brand identity for their opponents, and even winning elections, as in "legitimate rape." But obviously shallow and ridiculous leftists have enjoyed immunity from the progmedia. Our crucial leverage point is the internet, and the viral distribution capacity of social networking. The picture of Penn in his "Bolivarian" tracksuit is potentially rich fodder for ridicule, and there is much, much more. Penn is the classic true believer in the Church of Redemptive Left. His numerous flaws -- this wealthy Marin County-dwelling, domestically violent, muscle-car driving, gun toting, ex-husband of Madonna - do not get in the way of his pretending to be a humanitarian, a compassionate lover of the underdog, and nther4efore, a good, maybe even a great, human being.
The fact that Penn is often incoherent in print, and doesn't need a tricky questioner leading him astray, makes the target all the riper.
Conservatives understand that the Left is full of fantasy, contradiction, and self-righteousness. Our task is to include these characteristics in the broader public's understanding of what the Left is. We must tarnish their brand, and we have the preponderance of the media dead set against this. As Alinsky counseled, we must use thei8r strengths against them, an d force them to live up to their own standards (which they can't), and mercilessly ridicule them.
In a sense very different from Lenin's use of the phrase, Sean Penn is a useful idiot.