John Tierney, who lives in Manhattan, phones it in this morning with a tired juxtaposition of Laura Bush's comedy routine and liberal condescension towards red staters. To hear the Times token libertarian tell it, us Democrats are still trying to pick our jaws off the floor from Mrs. Bush's ability to tell a racy joke, and we're doing it because we believe folks in the red states don't tell racy jokes, think racy thoughts, or have racy relations.
Tierney would be 1/3rd right, if he meant race relations. Instead, he's invented a whole new stereotype. If you could find me one single liberal who thought Bible thumpers lived lives of ascetic purity, I'd disown evolution. As it is, blue state irritation with red state "moral values" stems not from the beliefs, but from the hypocrisy therein. It's hard to respect a cultural backlash driven by the same folks clamoring for the culture. It's worse to be accused of impiety and religious ignorance by states whose safety nets are so ripped and tattered that you can barely makes out the bodies of all the needy who fell through them. That's why Tierney's effort rings so false. When he closes out his column with one last monumental attempt to channel red state truth for blue state edification and informs us that red staters weren't shocked by Laura's "Dollar Bill Cheney" joke because red staters have gone to strip clubs and wasted dollar bills at them, it's hard to do anything but snigger bitterly.
Yeah John. We know.