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I Love Each and Every One of You … From the Bottom of my Heart

I can recognize a fellow curmudgeon a mile away. Today I present to you Richard Cohen, who’s on a tear about false displays of affection:

We have become a nation of phonies. We blow air kisses at one another. We love everyone. We don’t merely like them or respect them or hold them in some esteem. We love th…

  1. KC Mulville

    Prove it. Provide my healthcare.

  2. katievs

    Yes to more formality.

    Yes to re-establishing gradations in familiarity.

    Yes to less sentimentality and emotivism.

    Wilberforce had it right.  We need a general “reform of manners.”

    It won’t happen as long as moral relativism prevails in the culture.  

  3. Daniel Jeyn

    Yes.  This.  Obama has been feted as the second coming of Lincoln.  We can do worse than puncture his halo by never ceasing to point out the saccharine, platitudinous, meaningless pap he dishes out.  The secret weapon of the Left is that they do this to Conservative politicians while we have not enough Mark Steyn mockery of the utter fatuousness of our ruling class.

  4. Pseudodionysius

    the existence of emoticons

    Heh.

  5. Joan of Ark La Tex

    Here in the south, saying I love you, hugs and kisses are very common. More so among ladies. Men tend to just hug.  And usually, we do mean it.  I always think of it as a cultural thing. 

  6. Leslie Watkins

    I feel he trivializes the issue (though wittily and curmudgeonly) because he fails to ask why, for example, men don’t shake hands. Fixation on germs? Society’s rejection of any kind of formality as patriarchal and therefore oppressive? Or why this ubiquitous love love love talk. Oprah? Late-twentieth-century humanities fixating on community? (which is never actually defined yet defines everything and obviously is of their and only their design.) Or why we’re all phonies—I reject out of hand his assertion of my phoniness, essentially claiming to have some fact on hand that he clearly does not have and would resent mightily my claiming to have on him. Asking these questions would lead to an answer he does not like: a sociopolitical culture motivated by cheap grace. So, instead of swinging at the ball, he throws down his bat. 

  7. DrewInWisconsin
    We blow air kisses at one another. We love everyone. We don’t merely like them or respect them or hold them in some esteem. Welovethem. We have done away with the intermediary steps of feelings less than love. Performers on the stage shout they love us. Politicians love us. Acquaintances love us. The people who actually love us still love us, but how would we know? Never mind condemning recreational sex. How about recreational love?

    Gotta be a regional thing. Up here among the stoic Scandinavians, we just don’t do that. (And we frown disapprovingly at people who do.)

    (Also, Richard Cohen is a lefty crank, and we shouldn’t celebrate anything he’s written, even using the “stopped clock” measure. )

  8. Colin B Lane
    DrewInWisconsin

    (Also, Richard Cohen is a lefty crank, and we shouldn’t celebrate anything he’s written, even using the “stopped clock” measure. )

    I do wonder how this outburst squares with Cohen’s usually rote recitation of leftist positions. Is it possible he’s really a conservative (at least a cultural conservative) at heart, and this is a cracking open of his closet door?

  9. Hartmann von Aue

    Well, German, Spanish, French and Dutch don’t have this problem. The journey from “Herr Doktor von Aue” to “Hartmann” is a long one and irreversible. So, there’s the solution. Everyone embrace one of the other languages of the United States: German, Dutch, Spanish or French. 

  10. Percival
    If I loved you, Time and again I would try to say All I’d want you to know. If I loved you, Words wouldn’t come in an easy way Round in circles I’d go! Longin’ to tell you, But afraid and shy I’d let my golden chances pass me by! Soon you’d leave me, Off you would go in the mist of day, Never, never to know How I loved you If I loved you.

    – Oscar Hammerstein II, Carousel

  11. Mollie Hemingway
    C
    Leslie Watkins: Removed. · 8 minutes ago

    Edited 6 minutes ago

    Does this make anyone else desperate to know what the original comment was?

  12. Mollie Hemingway
    C
    Colin B Lane

    DrewInWisconsin

    (Also, Richard Cohen is a lefty crank, and we shouldn’t celebrate anything he’s written, even using the “stopped clock” measure. )

    I do wonder how this outburst squares with Cohen’s usually rote recitation of leftist positions. Is it possible he’s really a conservative (at least a cultural conservative) at heart, and this is a cracking open of his closet door? · 5 minutes ago

    It’s indisputable that the worst comments on any news site in the world are the comments on the WashPost. So I read them for fun, sometimes. When I checked in on this column’s comments, they were mostly of the “omg this means you are a filthy conservative” variety. Good times.

  13. The Mugwump

    When did discriminatating behavior become a vice and indiscriminate behavior become a virtue?  We live in a world turned upside down by moral relativism.     

  14. Andrew

    My friend’s 10 year old son said this on Super Bowl Sunday.

    “Men are mean to each other and don’t really mean it. Women are nice to each other and don’t really mean it.”

  15. Kelly B

    Wow.  I think I love him.

  16. Leslie Watkins

    Ha! Ha! Ha! See #6 above.

    Mollie Hemingway, Ed.

    Leslie Watkins: Removed. · 8 minutes ago

    Edited 6 minutes ago

    Does this make anyone else desperate to know what the original comment was? · 25 minutes ago

  17. Innocent Smith
    Percival

    If I loved you, Time and again I would try to say All I’d want you to know. If I loved you, Words wouldn’t come in an easy way Round in circles I’d go! Longin’ to tell you, But afraid and shy I’d let my golden chances pass me by! Soon you’d leave me, Off you would go in the mist of day, Never, never to know How I loved you If I loved you.

    – Oscar Hammerstein II, Carousel

    26 minutes ago

    “have you ever had someone hit you… but it didn’t hurt at all?”  … also from Carousel.  Weird movie.  ;)   (Mollie, I’m standing in opposition to your ban on emoticons!)

  18. Mollie Hemingway
    C
    Leslie Watkins: Ha! Ha! Ha! See #6 above.

    Mollie Hemingway, Ed.

    Leslie Watkins: Removed. · 8 minutes ago

    Edited 6 minutes ago

    Does this make anyone else desperate to know what the original comment was? · 25 minutes ago

    1 minute ago

    I knew it would be good! Thanks.

  19. Douglas

    Who is this man and what has he done with Richard Cohen? Because this sounds like something Bill Buckley would’ve written. Someone call the FBI, and make sure Cohen hasn’t been kidnapped and replaced with a conservative. Because that’s an utterly conservative column, and thus, nothing like what Richard Cohen usually likes. 

  20. DrewInWisconsin

    How much of this “fake feeling” can we chalk up to something like Facebook — which for many is an ongoing metagame called “Who has the most (and most interesting) friends?”

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