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it's about the ego, stupid

So it wasn't about the oil after all. It wasn't even about freedom for the Iraqi people or stealing antiquities or world domination.

It was about making the middle class white males of America feel good; a rah-rah morale builder for that portion of the American population who who needed more white male heroes because all their favorite sports teams have been taken over by minorities.

Well, that's the way it is in Norman Mailer's world.

There were, however, even better reasons for using our military skills, but these reasons return us to the ongoing malaise of the white American male. He had been taking a daily drubbing over the past 30 years. For better or worse, the women’s movement had had its breakthrough successes and the old, easy white male ego had withered in the glare. Even the mighty consolations of rooting for your team on TV had been skewed. There was now less reward in watching sports than there used to be, a clear and declarable loss. The great white stars of yesteryear were for the most part gone, gone in football, in basketball, in boxing, and half-gone in baseball. Black genius now prevailed in all these sports (and the Hispanics were coming up fast; even the Asians were beginning to make their mark). We white men were now left with half of tennis (at least its male half), and might also point to ice-hockey, skiing, soccer, golf, (with the notable exception of the Tiger) as well as lacrosse, swimming, and the World-Wide Wrestling Federation — remnants and orts of a once-great and glorious centrality.

So, women can blame themselves for this war as well. After all, if we didn't go out and get jobs and wear pants and drive cars, the American male wouldn't have been made to feel so weak and feminine and we would have no need for war so they could prove their muscular worth.

Perhaps we should blame Jackie Robinson for breaking the color barrier in baseball. After all, if he didn't pave the way for other black players to enter the major leagues, Bush would have no need to send our troops out to war to prove how fierce and dominant the white man is.

This all leaves me a bit confused, because I thought the mantra of the left preceding this war was that so many minorities would die because the American armed forces is made up mostly of poor black and hispanic soldiers.

Yet here is George Bush, sending all those people out to war because the white man needs to be emasculated.

Now you know. The war in Iraq was set up because Iraq was a weak opponent who would go down without too much of an effort on the part of the American team. Our armed forces - the white power hitters and quarterbacks and slam dunkers our nation was pining for - would sweep their way to victory and once again, the white male could claim dominance over everyone else, our banners would wave, our cheerleaders would do cartwheels and the scoreboard would explode with fireworks.

I wonder if Mailer really believes his own idiocy or if he just had this fantasy after drinking too much bourbon and decided that he would pass it off as truth?

As a matter of collective ego, the good white American male had had very little to nourish his morale since the job market had gone bad, unless he happened to be in the Armed Forces.

So relax, kids. It wasn't about the oil, after all. It was just one of those self-esteem lessons for depressed white men. Of all the crazy, conspiracy theory, fantasized theories the left has come up with to determine what this war was really about, this is by far the dumbest.

Perhaps Norman Mailer is the real white American male in need of a morale boost, and this column was just a way to get the left to put him back up on the pedestal of hero worship again.

We're on to you, Norman.

Comments

As a matter of collective ego, the good white American male had had very little to nourish his morale since the job market had gone bad, unless he happened to be in the Armed Forces.

Damn, someone pinch me... a liberal mentioned the bad job market without taking a second to blame Bush and his 'nonelection'... An obvious sign of a particularly sick moonbat.

I hate to be obvious, but the word "projection" comes to mind. How many years has it been since Normy had a best-seller to nourish his ego?

Does he sit around with Vidal and Vonnegut and Pinter and Albee griping about the has-been status of Other White Males?

The long march to irrelevance must be humiliating. If his ego derives nourishment from political success, it has been a lousy half-century for Norm and the rest of the hate-America Left.

So, since Mailer is a middle-class white male, I guess he feels great about this war? I'm confused indeed.

has reynolds wrap gone out of business? these tin-foil hatted people are just getting weirder as things grow more distant from the world-as-they-know-it

It's sad to watch Mailer sink into a liberal tinted version of senile dementia, but, at the same time, it's a good sign.

As he and his ilk grow more and more disconnected from reality the opinions that seep from his(and their) rotting cerebrums will become less easy for the more addle headed of our generation to emulate.

i agree that it seems a bit too far to the left, but after reading "War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning" (C. Hedges), which discusses the mass psychological reasons for entering war, and what war does to the human psyche, i'd say Mailer has some valid points at least. his presentation of those points may be a bit hard to swallow, however. i never did like his writing.

"collective ego" - let's play spot the contradiction.

Complete, total m**h*rfu**er. Yes, there can be (and were, in this case) "good" reasons to wage war, but assuaging bruised white-male egos of emasculated Modern Middle-aged Middle-class Man is not one of them.

Jonathan... there is a good song about you by Wendy and Lisa. If you are the same Jonathan as is Wendy's dead brother, that is.

[In] mourning, it is better to err on the side of grief than on the side of formality.