I was so certain that the first postings about the sudden death of Andrew Breitbart on the ‘Bigs’ last week were some kind of prank – that someone had hacked his Twitter feed, or his email, or even the website itself. Unlike many other a blogger from the conservative-libertarian side of the blogosphere, I can’t even say that I knew him, personally or by email … but I have read the ‘Bigs’ every day for months, which in blog-time must equal to years – and always derived a lot of amusement from his various projects. He fought the good fight passionately, aiming true and never backing down. His style was piratical, swashbuckling and fearless. I am fairly certain that he had a brass pair so large they probably clanged like Big Ben when he walked down the street.

So many of us who blog about politics do operate these days in – if not fear, then at least some apprehension; bloggers who tackle controversial issues do tend to attract animus from commenters, at the very least. The tall dogs in this field do draw the fleas. It’s the price of having opinions, though – and one shouldn’t mind it, too much – but still… I remember being absolutely horrified at seeing some of the threats that someone like Michelle Malkin gets all the time, and even Ann Althouse got some very scary, and very specific threats at the height of the Madison ruckus this last year. It was heartening to watch someone who was not the least bit intimidated or discouraged by that kind of reaction to go on swinging. As I said – solid brass pair. He will be missed. Conservatives and Libertarians don’t have a particularly deep bench.

Conversely, Rush Limbaugh is the other big hitter on the Conservative-Libertarian bench – and he also had a bad week. I’ve never had much interest in following him – or Glenn Beck, either. Just not my cuppa; I managed to not know who Glenn Beck was, all the way up to the first big San Antonio Tea Party rally in 2009. And it looks like el Rushbo did manage to miss the whole point of the Sandra Fluke/Georgetown Law imbroglio. Can’t blame him, really – that a thoroughly modern co-ed at a very expensive uni has the need of $1,000 worth of birth control during a single year is pretty risible. (What? She can’t find the nearest CVS pharmacy or Planned Parenthood? I thought there was an app for that…and it doesn’t cost all that much.)The real point was that the innocent and dewy-eyed 20-something co-ed was actually a thirty-ish career activist whose mission was to force a Jesuit-sponsored institution to take a course of action counter to their firmly-held principles. That she was wheeled out there and touted as the innocent and dewy-eyed 20-something co-ed in spite of considerable evidence in the public domain to the contrary … that’s the part worthy of scorn, derision and contempt.
The administration is attempting to force Catholic institutions to provide a particular health service option which is antithetical to their principles. That’s the issue – and instead, we have another round of lefty squealing about civility. Which, considering some of the things that those very same lefties said about Breitbart … is most ironical.