In contrast with Rick Warren’s depressingly prosaic, tone deaf, sectarian and artless invocation, I thought Elizabeth Alexander’s poem was a genuinely spiritual moment during the inauguration—a “prayer,” if you will—and a moving affirmation of human work, longing, and the supremacy of love—and “walking in that light”:
Naturally, Rush Limbaugh delighted in hating Alexander’s poem, proud of his ignorance and anti-aestheticism, telling a caller who tried to explain the poem to him:
I’m really glad that you have the ability to interpret gobbledygook. It’s something that I have never, ever been able to do. I recognize BS when I hear it, and I know it’s BS, but the exact meaning sometimes eludes me. Same thing with gobbledygook.
There was once a time when conservatism appreciated elite literary culture, and cared about figurative language, and understood its value (T.S. Eliot, for example, was a conservative).
Today’s know-nothing conservatism is a sign that the movement has entered a decadent phase.