I’ve been cynically amused over the past couple of weeks at how efficiently the Laptoperati and Twitter-fixated media Powers That Be have swung to “Russia Bad-Ukraine Brave & Noble!!! Eleventy!!” since the Russian invasion-attempted-occupation-re-occupation of the place began in a big way nearly two weeks ago. How can it now be World War III already, when we still have our Covid-19 decorations still up? Watching practically every media outlet swing into action in being all sympathies for Ukraine and all-hate on Russia is … astonishing. All the parties who would have been lighting candles, holding vigils for peace, and lecturing us about how war is not good for children and other living things, and no blood for oil have changed tune without missing a beat, hardly. Suddenly Vladimir Putin is the enemy of all that is good and decent, and everyone is rushing to declare sympathy with and support of the Ukraine, declare anything Russian to be double-plus-ungood, and throwing Russian cats out of cat shows, Anna Netrebko out of the Met, and vodka with a Russian-origin brand-name down the drain. Celebrity fools with pretensions to adequacy issue hysterical demands that Russia be thrown out of NATO, or that NATO enforce a no-fly zone over the Ukraine – never mind that Russia wasn’t a member of that organization and instituting a no-fly zone would almost instantly involve the United States. The turn-around is purely astonishing to behold; a hashtag/social media war on steroids.
It reminds me of the last time there was a grand virtue-signaling rush on social media – Kony 2012, anyone? Bring back the Chibok girls. It also reminds me of a minor running jest in Angela Thirkell’s early wartime Barsetshire novels. A pair of elderly spinsters keep renaming their pet dog after the leader or national hero of whatever nation that Hitler had just lately overrun as a pathetically useless gesture of support for plucky little (insert name of country here) which likely left the poor little dog terribly confused, as there were quite a few countries or regions invaded by the Nazis in the late 1930s and early 1940s. But that was just light fiction.
About the last time the American public went in this heavily for round of ostentatious wartime virtue-signaling, it involved re-christening sauerkraut as Liberty cabbage, throwing stones at dachshunds, and a lot of German-Americans legally changing their surnames to something less identifiably Teutonic. It also contributed to wishing Prohibition on us, which might suggest that ostentatious virtue-signaling is not a wise choice when it comes to suggesting national policy.
Was the signal sent out officially, by some version of Journolist, or is it just a matter of all the birds in a media flock pivoting and turning independently in response to hints that the Biden administration may be in deep doo-doo? My daughter just yesterday saw gas at almost $4.00 – and last week, it jumped ten cents in a single day. In San Antonio. These costs cannot continue without resentment and protest. Neither can the cost of basic groceries, or their erratic delivery to the store shelves. I can’t think that whoever is pulling the strings in the Biden administration deliberately fomented a war with Russia as a means of distracting Americans from the various disasters building; inflation in the costs of practically every commodity on the market, catastrophic crime rates in red-run cities and farming and transportation woes. We may safely assume, though. that the Biden administration powers-that-be are taking full advantage of, and even encouraging the Ukraine-Russian war to that end. Discuss as you wish.