Sunday, December 21, 2008
N. Dumbass Kristof
Regular readers know of my general lack of respect for Nicholas D. Kristof, the whiny halfwitted Times columnist. I try not to read him because whenever I do I'm moved to post about why he's an idiot. Occasional lapses are, however, inevitable. In his latest column, he says liberals are tightfisted about giving to charity, and spend too much of their giving on frivolities like the arts. He doesn't stop to consider that, by and large, liberals don't believe in charity as a useful way of organizing the safety net, whereas a fair number of us approve of running the arts on charitable donations. Depending on the precise politics, this may or may not justify not giving to charity absent a better solution, but it seems like a point that one should at least engage. There are fairly serious problems with outsourcing the safety net to Mother Teresa or the clowns who buy up Sudanese slaves to "redeem" them, not least that the semblance of activity makes it difficult to garner public support for saner and more equitable programs.