As I prepare for Christmas while simultaneously reading Dante's "Inferno," which is not a combination I would normally recommend, I decided to come up with a short list of people in the news whose presence would not be missed. (Running through my mind is a tune from Gilbert & Sullivan.)
I don't wish these people any harm, just that they would vanish from my orbit of awareness and be ignored by the mainstream media. I picture them in a new, 10th circle of Hell, a much-needed addition to the old nine cirlces, this one just for ignorant, self-promoting bastards (ISBs).
SOME PEOPLE I WOULDN'T MISS:
1. Glenn Beck, who claims to reveal new, inside (secret) information to his gullible followers but who, in fact, re-channels John Birch Society ideas from the 1950s about how we must get rid of the socialist (Communist) menace, currently personified by Obama. Beck is one of those who opposes the Federal Reserve on the basis of a fantasy that it's an unAmerican conspiracy of Jewish bankers. See Sean Wilentz's recent piece on all this.
2. Sarah Palin, a clueless cheerleader for herself.
3. Rand Paul, who has stated that greed is good and essential for capitalism. A follower of the misguided Ayn Rand.
4. Howard Stern, whose latest vile outburst and greed were cited in today's news.
5. Christopher Hitchens, who despite his intelligence, believes that "religion poisons everything."
6. Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh, perpretators of the malicious journalism of hate and self-promotion. They are paired in the Dantean style (see Ulysses and Diomede in canto 32).
If it weren't for the holidays, usually a time of good cheer, I would add more. This is a good start as the year nears its end and we prepare for a new beginning.