An October surprise?

An occasional series on the sub-standard thinking, writing, and editing that are so common at establishment conservative websites

This is the opening paragraph from “An October Surprise? Tell It to the Marines,” by Ken Blackwell, at

With the general election less than a month away and the Democrats reeling from one bad poll after another, the time is ripe for them to spring an “October surprise” in an attempt to shift the odds in their favor. This time, however, the surprise might be on them, judging from the surging candidacies of two GOP hopefuls engaged in races against two of the House’s most entrenched incumbents, Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, and Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), the House Majority Leader.

In his cleverness at having come up with his “reverse October surprise” idea, Blackwell seems not to have understood, first, that if Frank and Hoyer lose, it will be in November, not October, and, second, that the “surprise” would consist of their losing the election, not of a damaging piece of information launched by the opposing party. So there is no analogy and no parallel between an October surprise and the surprise that Blackwell hopes will occur. Constructing analogies, similes, and ironic reversals requires a modicum of intelligence and writing ability, qualities that are lacking among an alarming number of the paid writers at the “official” websites of the conservative movement, such as Andrew Breitbart’s stable of websites.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at October 04, 2010 10:12 AM | Send

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