Och! Zombies! Really Stupid Media Zombies!

This Grady Hendrix review in Slate, of a schlocky Joe Dante flick that hardly anybody will actually watch, contains possibly the most ignorant and offensive collection of sentences that I’ve read in the last decade:

Today, zombies are the perfect metaphor for our soldiers in Iraq: They’re shell-shocked, anonymous, and aren’t asked to make very many decisions. Unless you personally know a soldier, the war in Iraq has been a zombie war, fought by an uncomplaining, faceless mass wrapped in desert camo and called “our boys.” We talk about them all the time


35 Responses to “Och! Zombies! Really Stupid Media Zombies!”

  1. andy Says:

    Despite disagreeing with the politics involved in it, I watched it last night and enjoyed it, if only for the send-ups of Ann Coulter and the evangelical right.

  2. anonymous Says:

    Unless you personally know a soldier, the war in Iraq has been a zombie war, fought by an uncomplaining, faceless mass wrapped in desert camo and called “our boys.”And if you do know a soldier, it’s going about as well as you could expect a war to go. As best as I can tell, that sentence is literally an admission that their opinion is based entirely on their ignorance.

  3. Beto Ochoa Says:

    Bob Hopes Best Assesment

  4. kjuzenas Says:

    Great link, Beto Ocho!

  5. Major John Says:

    Hmmm. I haven’t had the slightest urge to lurch about saying “braaiins, braaains!”

    I guess when I finish some more courses from the Command and General Staff College I’ll become a bit more living-deadish.

  6. Pixy Misa Says:

    And if you do know a soldier, it’s going about as well as you could expect a war to go. As best as I can tell, that sentence is literally an admission that their opinion is based entirely on their ignorance.


  7. Pixy Misa Says:

    Hmmm. I haven’t had the slightest urge to lurch about saying “braaiins, braaains!”

    Not even a little bit?

  8. Bruno Says:

    Hey all,

    Thanks for the link to the Bob Hope Clip.

    Come for the Clip, stay for the rest of the blog.

  9. Sgt. Mom Says:

    OMG… does anyone in the movie-producing, novel-writing, intellectual-meme creating world actually know first-hand, (or even at a remove via the milblogs) any actual real-live currently-serving members of the military at all???!!!
    Awww, jeese… dumb question. Forget I asked. Never mind.

  10. Tom M Says:

    “He got to see his youngest son at Thanksgiving, after missing eight of the first nine months of the little guy’s life ”

    I wonder if you have swerved into a P.R. campaign that might actually work for the Left. Scary thiught.

    God bless your brother for his service.

  11. Tom M Says:

    Loose crap: “thought”.
    Nothing kills a point better than a spell attack.

  12. Robin Goodfellow Says:

    Grady must be trying out for a position at MinTruth, this demonstration of his abilities in black-white and double-think is superb.

  13. Harry Says:

    Steve, that is probably the finest shredding job since Sadaam’s boys had to leave their wood chipper behind and run from the US Army.

  14. Patrick Chester Says:

    Grady’s proclaimed:
    Today, zombies are the perfect metaphor for our soldiers in Iraq…

    Perfect way to describe how the anti-war left sees soldiers.

  15. Will Collier Says:

    Sgt. Mom, I was just thinking about all the decisions a 20-year-old crew chief has to make in an average day on the flight line. The pressure and brainpower demands of any one of them would probably put our pal Grady into catatonic shock.

  16. Andrew X Says:

    “But what if they come back and they’re different? What if they come back and don’t want to follow orders anymore?”

    I wish I could remember who blogged it, but someone of late had a brilliant analysis of a big reason for the Soviet collapse, namely the fact that Soviets had been lied to that Afghanistan was going so well, and when all those soldiers began to return and spread across the country, what they personally said to family, friends, and community proved a devastating body blow to the Soviet polity.

    Blogger went on to write, what happens when the US troops begin returning en mass from Iraq? I suppose if they are all dupes and our glorious press is correct, then “they (will) come back and (not) want to follow orders anymore?”

    But what if THEY begin telling friends, family, and communities across the nation that it is the press that has been largely lying to them, or at best incompetently telling the story? What if that crushes an MSM that, ike the Soviet Union itself, is already reeling? What if, God help us, the insurgency were to triumph and our military knew, just KNEW, that it happened because of a loss of will at home, a direct result of guess-who.

    Let us imagine Mr Hindrix and his ilk being confronted with either of those scenarios. Let us consider that the MSM is already into their own ‘Bush moron, Iraq disaster’ quagmire so deep, they HAVE to see this effort fail, because God help them all if it succeeds and they are exposed across the planet as incompetent at best, frauds and liars at worst.

    Gosh, think any of this may have occured to them yet? Whether it has or whether it has not, I can’t say which of those two possibilities is worse.

  17. Mike Richmann Says:

    Well, I took one for the Gipper and watched significant chunks (there’s an appropriate word) of Dante’s “Homecoming”.

    Oh. My. God.

    Long story short, even if you agree with the politics, the piece was laughably bad. Utterly undisguised propaganda, actors who if they chewed the scenery any harder would have had their stomachs pumped, etc., etc. I should have known since both Joe Dante and Mick Garris were involved. Dante’s directed “Gremlins” for a reason and I hold Garris personally responsible for ruining the remake of “The Shining” and for seriously cripping “The Stand”.

    Excuse me but I must now hurl.

  18. also anon Says:

    On the contrary, I suspect that the author of this piece has both met and discussed the war with members of the military. Upon hearing that they disagreed with him, he leapt blindly to the only conclusion he could digest: that this person was as he described soldiers in general in the article in question. It’s the only page in the liberal elitist playbook: if they disagree with you, they are stupid. Corollaries to this axiom include “therefore, we must take some of your money to serve the greater good” and “people don’t kill people, guns kill people.”

  19. beerpundit Says:

    Don’t forget that according to the left the only reason I joined the Marines, or anyone joins the Military is that they are poor and too stuipd to do anything else.

  20. richard mcenroe Says:

    Major John

  21. SFC SKI Says:

    I don’t know, after a few months of MRE’s and the “if it’s Thursday, it must be Chili-Mac” DFAC rotation, brains might be a pretty good meal.

    When I read things like Mr. HEndrix writes, I KNOW he doesn’t know any soldiers, and I just dismiss him as another know-nothing civilian.

  22. XWL Says:

    ” I feel very secure in flatly declaring that he’d bury Grady Hendrix, or any other elitist mediot snob”

    That sounds like the germ of a great idea. Line up 3 or 4 media snobs with 3 or 4 active duty troops and have them compete in a College Bowl style battle of wits. Or even better, have multiple events with NYT fielding one team, Salon another, Slate another and have them compete against individual divisions.

    The (mental) carnage would be gratifying.

  23. Dr Victorino de la Vega Says:

    Well according to Carribean theology

  24. Nonnie Says:

    De. de la Vega–

    Is it your habit to skip from blog to blog, leaving the same inane post in every comments section you can get into? Your post above is almost exactly identical to the one you left at Dr. Helen’s place. Geez, why not come up with your own words? People might actually take you a little (but only a little, mind you!) more seriously.

    As for the writer you quote, I have little use for Thoreau – he may have been a wonderful writer, but he was also a pacifist of the first water, the kind of man who would stand by and allow all sorts of evil in the world to go unchecked because opposing it by force was against his personal beliefs, all the while hiding behind the lines of good and brave citizens who took up arms in his behalf. In short, a lot like many poser leftists today.

  25. xj Says:

    Nonnie: I’m afraid this is indeed “Dr” de la Vega’s habit. He used to troll over at Samizdata until he was banned for being a total waste of bandwidth, and even then he tried to sneak back under another name. Now that he’s finally been driven out of there he has taken to “leaving his scent” all over the rest of the blogosphere. The man is nothing more than a comment spammer and should be treated as such.

  26. monkeyboy Says:

    Vega is a bot I think, if he’s a real person, he is so close to a bot that…well, its just sad really.

    Andrew, I think that the return will be more like 1865 than Russians in Afghanistan. While they don’t have the numbers to keep America republican for half a century. The vets will be a voting block like the Grand Army of the Republic. The dems have managed to politicize the military….also sad really.

  27. monkeyboy Says:

    Oh, and there was a French movie calle “J’ Accuse!” made in 1919 that showed dead from WWI getting out of their graves to attach the political leadership.

    So its not only crap, but derivative crap as well.

  28. Steve B Says:

    MAJ John, even if you did have the urge to murmur ‘braiiins, braaaains…’, stay away from newsrooms – you’d starve to death.

  29. richard mcenroe Says:

    SGT Mom

  30. hottub Says:

    You know, somebody should just tell the truth about all this. Critics of the war, especially Hollywood critics, don’t give a rat’s ass about the soldiers. A death count of 2000+? There were training exercises during WWII that killed more Americans.

    They don’t really care about the welfare of the Iraqis either. After all, what were the alternative to this war? The embargo? Remember when UNICEF estimated that the embargo killed 1M Iraqis, half of them children? Which is better for the Iraqis – taking 100K losses in a struggle to be free, or being starved and neglected with no end in sight?

    The truth is, these critics are only trying to rescue the mythos of the Viet Nam protesters and draft dodgers. Remember them? The sons of the Greatest Generation, spoiled by the enormous success and productivity of their victorious parents, didn’t want to go and risk death in some swamp. I know, I was there – just young enough to avoid being drafted myself.

    The trouble is, saying you were against Viet Nam because you feared for your own skin sounds a little ignoble after all these years. That’s one big reason, in my opinion, why the aftermath of our sudden pullout is so rarely discussed.

    Of course, Viet Nam really was a stupid war for us – it wasn’t going to make the U.S. more or less safe no matter which way it went. But they can’t say that too loudly either. Someone might notice that it was Kennedy and Johnson who made that mistake. That would unravel the amazingly successful efforts to pin Viet Nam on Nixon!

    Far better to pretend that, somehow, after only one generation, the sons and daughters of Americas greatest warriors suddenly became so enlightened as to realize that war is always bad, and peace is always good – even if “peace” means injustice, danger, and the suffering of millions.

    No wonder the left is so angry. They got away with this sleight-of-hand for years, but now the deception is finally being exposed for the nonsense that it is.

    Iraq isn’t Viet Nam. Winning there will make the U.S. much much safer. Besides, what are the alternatives? Continuing the embargo against Iraq would have been unjust to the Iraqi people. Dropping the embargo would have endangered at least the entire Middle East – a region that even peacenik J. Carter acknowledged was a “vital National Interest”. Does anyone think that S.H. would forgive-and-forget that the entire region supported the U.S. in kicking him out of Kuwait?

    Not only that, but the American men and women fighting in Iraq are not draftees, they’re volunteers… volunteers who are re-enlisting at a record pace no less. There is absolutely no reason for anyone to protest against their deployment anywhere in the world – that’s what they signed up to do.

    The good thing about the current debate is that, hopefully, all of this will eventually be made crytal clear. Perhaps then the U.S. will finally be able to shake off the maliase caused by this deliberate self-deception, and resume it’s rightful place of leadership in the world.

  31. Three Years of Hell to Become the Devil Says:

    Well, At Least We Know Where the Brains Are in Washington. BRRRAAAAAAAIIIINNS!

    Sadly, we can never seem to put liberal fantasies about politics in their well-deserved graves. First Commander in Chief gets picked up for a full season, then a small blog-flurry has erupted over reviews in the Village Voice and on…

  32. Pixy Misa Says:

    SGT Mom

  33. Swanky Conservative Says:

    On the Antiwar Left (or known as “What Liberal Media?”)

    Two things I noticed this past week that have me convinced the American Left and the Mainstream Media are still operating in their 2004 Election mode. First was the buffoonish MoveOn ad that featured an image of British troops in an ad about our servi…

  34. Mikd Says:

    Grady Hendrix is quite a name. I hope someone eats the fucker.

  35. Julie Says:

    John Ringo is great… a word of caution, though, _Ghost_ isn’t just pornographic (and I’ve been meaning to write Mr. Ringo a stern note about it) and even then it would be okay if it weren’t for the middle part which is a BS&M primer explaining how Ghost is really not an evil, twisted person after all when we get back to the part where he’s violently raping young girls. (John, you went and opened the bedroom door and *ruined* it.) OKAY… that said… the first novelette is really quite good and rather satisfying in a bloodthirsty sort of way. 😉

    And I quite liked _Princess of Swords_.

    As for the Zombie review… I can’t tell if “unless you personally know a soldier” is a disclaimer for all of the rest or not. Certainly the review reflects a common enough attitude toward the military. Even people who think they are being large minded and accepting will come with some of this “not allowed to think for themselves” garbage.

    It’s possibly not related at all but I’m suddenly reminded of the stereotypical (movie?) Indian, stoic, unhumourus. The military is sort of good at putting on the uniform and with it a certain appearance of imperviousness… blandness.

    And now I’m reminded of a story, a couple of times removed, told by someone to whom the military was a mysterious, impenetrable thing based on absolute obedience and authority. The events of the story showed a couple of Navy officers essentially “playing for the natives.” The difference was between those who knew it was a show and those who didn’t.

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