With apologies. This is a great little movie, by the way. I think it's Jim Carey's best performance. Ever. Ditto Kate Winslet. Even Elijah Wood does well in a supporting role.
Tbogg has a nice extended post on Jason Mattera, the " surprisingly fresh face of conservatism" who isn't really all that fresh, or really conservative. What makes it worth recommending is the absolute cluelessness the young man displays. Whether it's kicking a liberal journalist out of the YAF meeting ("Because I said so") or whining about race-based private scholarships ("There's a group of students on campus, a large group of students on campus who are handicapped and they're at a disadvantage. And they're at a disadvantage because of their Caucasian descent.") or even displaying a certain, um, fogginess about his sexual orientation (“If you were with The National Review, I’d get you a seat right up front and have one of my interns give you a nice massage, and grab you a cup of Sunkist.” . . . “I would give you my business card,” he quips as I turn to leave. “But you would probably just hit on me.”), Mattera is the very model of the modern major conservative. Displaying equal parts intellectual dishonesty, a rough exterior that only exists because some powerful folks have his back, and the kind of lack of awareness that comes from any serious exploration of life outside the cozy bubble in which he exists.
I don't like criticizing him because he supports the military venture in Iraq without ever entering the military. In a time of an all-volunteer military, he is perfectly within his rights to make those particular choices, and I think it improper to make more of that than there is.
When an absence of any serious intellectual, moral, or political integrity is raised to an art form, as it is here, it is a wonder to behold. As the power and influence of conservatism wanes (although it will, obviously, never disappear), it is nice to see the lighter (it isn't quite a torch) being passed to a new generation as gruesome as the one that is passing in to history.