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Does South Park Encourage Political Apathy and Moral Superiority?

Critics say the long-running satiric cartoon has created "a generation of boys" who are smug and disengaged.

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Last week, the long-running and iconoclastic cartoon South Park got dragged yet again, this time for allegedly teaching "a generation of boys…that it was always cooler to be reactionary and contrarian, and anyone who criticizes anything is 'offended' and that's the *real* problem." A Twitter thread started by novelist, podcaster, and TV writer Dana Schwartz caught enough buzz to get trending on the micro-blogging site. It's worth pausing over her critique, since it reflects past attacks and, more importantly, is fundamentally wrong in its substance.

Far from inculcating moral nihilism and a shallow "pox on both your houses" mentality, South Park traffics in a smart skepticism toward power in all of its manifestations and provides over two decades worth of lessons on how to be a decent, tolerant, smart, and funny human being despite living in a world that is casually brutal, disgusting, and indifferent to suffering (watch the 2001 episode "Scott Tenorman Must Die," a version of Seneca's horrific Thyestes if you have any doubt).

Schwartz argues that South Park traffics in moral relativism, or perhaps a form of ideological nihilism, because she believes its core message is "the only correct thing is to do nothing." In her tweets on the topic, she admits in passing that she hasn't "been watching the show in recent seasons," which helps to explain why her critique is so wide of the mark.

In the early days of the show, critics were already deriding the show as "dangerous to democracy" and "vile trash" that poisoned young viewers' minds. But as Barry Fagin wrote back in 2000 for Reason, the show was "loaded with moral content" and taught his then-10 and 12 years old kids valuable lessons, including "it's good to make fun of people who believe stupid things," "it's good to make fun of hypocrisy," and "things that happen in cartoons aren't real."

That last point was particularly important in the 1990s, when both liberals and conservatives were desperately trying to control the information explosion that came along with cable television and the internet. By representing the need for critical consumption of both expertise and information, South Park, like other shows that helped define the '90s (think The Simpsons, Beavis and Butt-Head, and Mystery Science Theater 3000) helped to develop media literacy in millions of viewers.

I'd go further still and underscore that South Park teaches at least three basic lessons in virtually every episode. The first is that people in authority need to earn our respect rather than assume it. The second is that cultural, moral, and political diversity is both the real state of nature and can only be sustained through honest and open discussion about our differences. The third is that personal responsibility is the key to a flourishing society and the foundation of positive communal action. These points are summarized in this brief video from 2013:

3 Reasons All Kids Should be FORCED to Watch South Park!

So the 19th (!) season of South Park kicked off on Wednesday. The episode nudges into instant-classic territory, managing to satirize the Patriots' QB Tom Brady, Caitlyn Jenner, and zero-tolerance-crazed school officials in a way that is both sacred and profane (but mostly the latter, thank Zog). And there's quite possibly the greatest dream sequence in TV history since Newhart's final episode in You can watch the full South Park episode, "Stunning and Brave," online for free at Southpark.cc.com.A couple of years ago, Reason TV released "3 Reasons All Kids Should Be FORCED to Watch South Park." Spoiler alert: We were being super-cereal about that. Really.Here's the text, which accompanied the 2013 video that Jim Epstein and Nick Gillespie put together.One of the longest lived and most controversial TV shows of all time – South Park – is kicking off its 17th season.Despite being a cartoon, South Park was the first weekly TV show to be given an MA rating, meaning it's intended for mature audiences. And it's certainly packed with foul language, off-color humor, and adult situations.But it's also truly educational, especially for children. So here are three reasons why all parents should make their kids watch South Park.1. Disrespect My Authoritah!Virtually every episode points out the difference between legitimate authority and the abuse of power and scare-mongering. Whether it's the show's Jew-baiting jerk Eric Cartman going nuts as a traffic cop or former Vice President Al Gore trying to scare the boys into hysteria over ManBearPig, South Park always emphasizes thinking for yourself rather than blindly following what leaders say.2. Respect True Diversitah!Today's kids are constantly force-fed hosannas to tolerance and diversity that ring hollow and false. But even when it's brutally satirizing something like Mormonism, South Park actually fosters a true live-and-let-live ethos that's sadly lacking in most K-12 curricula.3. It Emphasizes Personal ResponsibilityAmong South Park's core values is taking responsibility for one's actions. In the episode where Stan's father develops a drinking problem and seeks supernatural intervention for a cure, it's the child who lays out the case for self-control and accountability.The most enduring lesson of South Park isn't found in any given episode but in the entire show's run and the careers of its creators, Trey Parker and Matt Stone. The show grew out of early videos, including a 1995 one that pitted Santa vs. Jesus in a fight to the death over the true meaning in Christmas.Now, almost 20 years later, Parker and Stone have created one of the greatest TV shows of all time, along with unforgettable movies such as the all-puppet action thriller Team America and the Broadway smash The Book of Mormon.They're no uncritical fans of Walt Disney but their careers are a testament to his belief that "If you can dream it, you can do it."In a way that's virtually unmatched, Parker and Stone teach all our children that creativity and hard work – and an ability to laugh at everything life throws at you - eally do pay off in the long run.About 3 minutes. Written by Nick Gillespie, who narrates, and produced by Jim Epstein. Scroll below for downloadable versions and subscribe to Reason.tv's YouTube channel to receive automatic notifications when new videos go live. More at https://reason.com/blog/2015/09/18/south-parks-19th-season-debuted-on-wedne

Posted by Reason Magazine on Friday, September 18, 2015

At one point in her tweetstorm about South Park, Schwartz writes, "To be clear, I don't blame the show itself as much as I do the generation of boys who internalized it into their personalities. Which maybe isn't the show's fault!" There's no question audiences have a mind of their own and consumers of a given text routinely (and legitimately) interpret that text in ways that confound its creator's intentions. So it's possible that rather than create an audience that is smarter and more skeptical of information and power, South Park has instead simply created an army of douchebros who act more like Cartman rather than Stan or Kyle. But since South Park first aired back in 1997, the country has become vastly more tolerant toward all sorts of marginalized people and causes and no view of the show could miss what side its creators are on when it comes to out-groups ranging from immigrants to trans people to Mormons. We may indeed be more vulgar as a society, but we're also generally more tolerant and engaged too (the youth vote for the 2018 midterms was the highest in decades). South Park might not deserve much or even any of the credit, but it doesn't deserve any of the blame either.

Related: Read the 2006 Reason interview Jesse Walker and I conducted with Matt Stone and Trey Parker.

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  1. Fuck those people, they are so insufferable.

    South Park is a god damned National Treasure. It is one of the most libertarian shows ever made with strong themes of personal responsibility, insufferable power hungry nannies (the whole movie was about that), questioning authority, etc.

    South Park has done a moral good and these assholes can’t take it. Leftists have no sense of humor — people on the right, and libertarians, laugh when south park pokes a joke at them, because we can fucking laugh at a joke. With the left, the only thing that is accepted is something that validates their worldview, otherwise it is problematic.

    So yeah, the ‘critics’ can fuck right off.

    1. South Park really is a treasure. They also found the winnig formula against lefty outrage: do something totally outrageous in every episode. That way no one ever has any credible claim that “now they’ve crossed the line” since they cross the line every week. And being very popular and never apologizing helps too.

      1. Never apologize.

        1. Don’t apologize to people who don’t want it. They don’t want an apology, they want domination. It’s all power politics to them

        2. “Never explain, never complain.” Henry Ford II when caught with a pole dancer that wasn’t his wife.

      2. They depicted mohammed in an episode and they are still alive. That’s awesome.

        1. But Comedy Central refused to air it. But they have no problem airing every episode depicting Christ. Albeit leftist swear Christians are as dangerous as Islamist.

          1. That was the greatest point made by an artist in my lifetime.
            Genius + balls

    2. Yeah, South Park shows that the best choice often is to do nothing. That’s because they know that the people who want to change something aren’t, by rule, any less power-hungry or more moral than the people who are running things now. Change doesn’t mean good things happen.

      1. +1000

      2. “South Park shows that the best choice often is to do nothing.”

        Agreed!!!

        The BEST way to intelligently do nothing, in political matters these days, is to SHRINK the size of Government Almighty! And THAT is a damned fine idea! The ONLY way to do it now, is to vote Libertarian! The leftists are clearly NOT going to shrink Government Almighty… But then again, Trump and the Republican Church ain’t doin’ that right now, either!

        “South Park” is clearly of a libertarian bent… But the (“South Park”) critics here make NO serious attempt to refute the obvious virtues of the free-market, libertarian approach of respecting individual freedoms!

        1. Fuck off Mary.

          1. “Dear Abby” is a personal friend of mine. She gets some VERY strange letters! For my amusement, she forwards some of them to me from time to time. Here is a relevant one:

            Dear Abby, Dear Abby,
            My life is a mess,
            Even Bill Clinton won’t stain my dress,
            I whinny seductively for the horses,
            They tell me my picnic is short a few courses,
            My real name is Mary Stack,
            NO ONE wants my hairy crack!
            On disability, I live all alone,
            Spend desperate nights by the phone,
            I found a man named Richard Decker,
            But he won’t give me his hairy pecker!
            Decker’s pecker is reserved for farm beasts,
            I am beastly, yes! But my crack’s full of yeasts!

            So Dear Abby, that’s just a poetic summary… You can read about the Love of my Life, Richard Decker, here:
            https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/10/11/farmers-kept-refusing-let-him-have-sex-with-their-animals-so-he-sought-revenge-authorities-say/#comments-wrapper
            Farmers kept refusing to let him have sex with their animals. So he sought revenge, authorities say.
            Decker the hairy pecker told me a summary of his story as below:
            Decker: “Can I have sex with your horse?”
            Farmer: “Lemme go ask the horse.”
            Pause…
            Farmer: “My horse says ‘neigh’!”
            And THAT was straight from the horse’s mouth! I’m not horsin’ around, here, no mare!

            So Decker the hairy pecker told me that, apparently never even realizing just HOW DEEPLY it hurt me, that he was all interested in farm beasts, while totally ignoring MEEE!!

            So I thought maybe I could at least liven up my lonely-heart social life, by refining my common interests that I share with Richard Decker… I, too, like to have sex with horses!

            But Dear Abby, the horses ALL keep on saying “neigh” to my whinnying sexual advances!
            Some tell me that my whinnying is too whiny… Abby, I don’t know how to fix it!

            Dear Abby, please don’t tell me “get therapy”… I can’t afford it on my disability check!

            Now, along with my crack full of yeasts… I am developing anorexia! Some are calling me a “quarter pounder with cheese”, but they are NOT interested at ALL, in eating me!!! They will NOT snack on my crack!

            What will I DO, Dear Abby?!?!?

            -Desperately Seeking Horses, Men, or ANYTHING, in Fort Worth,
            Yours Truly,
            Mary Stack / Tulpa / Mary’s Period / “.” / Satan

            1. That kind of bullshit is a lot of ethylene you’re hated here. I guess even you figure too stupid to make a good argument or point about anything, so you beclown yourself in this fashion.

              Just another good reason to end it all. For you, it’s the most libertarian thing you could ever do.

              1. Shitsy Shitler, trying to kiss ass with Mary Stack / Tulpa / Mary’s Period / “.” / Satan is a waste of time… She may be enough of a low-life to want to fuck “Horses, Men, or ANYTHING”, but that does NOT go as low as Jimmy-Jones-worshipping Kool-Aid-Swilling death-worshippers like YOU! She is NOT going to fuck you, you lower-than-low-life! As low as Tulpa is, I have NOT seen Tulpa encouraging people to commit suicide!

                Shitsy Shitler, drinking Shitsy Kool-Aid in a spiraling vortex of darkness, cannot or will not see the Light… It’s a VERY sad song! Kinda like this…

                He’s a real Kool-Aid Man,
                Sitting in his Kool-Aid Land,
                Playing with his Kool-Aid Gland,
                Has no thoughts that help the people,
                He wants to turn them all to sheeple!
                On the sheeple, his Master would feast,
                Master? A disaster! Just the nastiest Beast!
                Kool-Aid man, please listen,
                You don’t know, what you’re missin’,
                Kool-Aid man, better thoughts are at hand,
                The Beast, to LEAVE, you must COMMAND!

                A helpful book is to be found here: M. Scott Peck, Glimpses of the Devil
                https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1439167265/reasonmagazinea-20/

                1. It’s sad how clever you think you’re being with this raving nonsense.

                  1. Do you recall the awesome enchanter named “Tim”, in “Monty Python and the Search for the Holy Grail”? The one who could “summon fire without flint or tinder”? Well, you remind me of Tim… You are an enchanter who can summon persuasion without facts or logic!

                    So I discussed your awesome talents with some dear personal friends on the Reason staff… Accordingly…

                    Reason staff has asked me to convey the following message to you:

                    Hi Fantastically Talented Author:

                    Obviously, you are a silver-tongued orator, and you also know how to translate your spectacular talents to the written word! We at Reason have need for writers like you, who have near-magical persuasive powers, without having to write at great, tedious length, or resorting to boring facts and citations.

                    At Reason, we pay above-market-band salaries to permanent staff, or above-market-band per-word-based fees to freelancers, at your choice. To both permanent staff, and to free-lancers, we provide excellent health, dental, and vision benefits. We also provide FREE unlimited access to nubile young groupies, although we do firmly stipulate that persuasion, not coercion, MUST be applied when taking advantage of said nubile young groupies.

                    Please send your resume, and another sample of your writings, along with your salary or fee demands, to ReasonNeedsBrilliantlyPersuasiveWriters@Reason.com .

                    Thank You! -Reason Staff

                    R-Mac… WHEN are ya gonna GET OFF OF YOUR ASS
                    and GET ON THE REASON STAFF!?!?!?

                2. Why isn’t this raving fvck banned?

                  1. Because I am giving the assholes what they deserve… Their assholeishness served right back to them! Learn that what comes around, goes around! If there’s no other way that you will learn, I’ll be happy to make it come back around, for you!

      3. Reminds me of Bloomberg’s latest financial transaction tax policy. How many savers or young future savers (investors) believe that tax will stay at .02% of every transaction? The sociopathic left are going after everything, including your after tax savings accounts, guns, energy grid, transportation and home. Central authoritarian planned wealth redistribution.

        Fuck Dana Schwartz, Michael Bloomberg and the entire Democrat party.

    3. Dana Schwartz=Kyle’s Mom

  2. Good if it’s true. Everyone is too damn politically engaged at the moment. Especially young people with their stupid young-people poloitics.

    1. A young recent grad-turned-teacher I work with and I were discussing politics. I didn’t let her platitudes fly about “tolerance” (of the leftist variety, mind you) and other leftist groupthink ideas. She quickly realized her ideas had jump head first into a blender. Her retort and defense was, “Well… I’m still young. I don’t know as much as you. I can’t be expected to fully understand the complexity of these issues like you.”

      At the time it seemed like a reasonable moment of self awareness that would serve her well. Only later that evening I found out she was taking part in a protest about the same ideas she just admitted to not fully understanding. That means, in her mind, she had to say “I don’t know anything about this… but I’ll be damned if I don’t go try and impose my way of life on others!!”

      She later led a professional development meeting at the school I work at about LGBTABCXYZ stuff… telling me how to think, feel, act, etc. regarding certain issues. Some of the general sentiment was fine… but as most political correctness goes there was this undertone of “And if you don’t fall in-line with no questions asked then you are LITERALLY a Nazi.” At that point I thought back to our conversation and wondered… “Who the hell do you think you are?” Turns out she’s a common leftist (no surprise).

  3. Why does anyone care what some Twitter cunt who got skewered by South Park thinks.

    Seriously Nick. It’s a moron bitching on Twitter. It literally does not matter, except when people like you elevate it in importance.

    1. “Why does anyone care what some Twitter cunt who got skewered by South Park thinks.”

      Only b/c it’s enjoyable laughing at her. Brightens my day.

      1. You know what? You’re absolutely right.

        1. No one is smarter than sarcasmic.

    2. They display an inadequate sense of “both sides!” That is what has Nick’s panties in a bunch.

  4. The essence of her complaint is that, ignoring pretty much the rest of any political satire on television, South Park dares to question leftist shibboleths. The possibility that young people might be exposed to the idea that progressive dogma is just something people like this find totally unacceptable. Young people have to be taught to only think things approved by the collective, after all!

  5. . . . she believes its core message is “the only correct thing is to do nothing.”

    Well, they’re not wrong. 99% of the time everyone involved are horrible people, you don’t fully understand what the background is, and you’re not smart enough anyway – so the best thing to do is walk away.

    A bias for ‘we must do something’ leads to ‘this is something, we must do this’ thinking. The vast majority of the harm caused by people comes from people who think they know what everyone else needs to do.

    Can anyone say things would genuinely have been worse in Russia if the Tsar had not been overthrown? Cambodia? China? Cuba? Have anti-drug and -prostitution laws made things better? Did the soda taxes actually reduce obesity?

    1. I think the core message is not to do nothing but don’t trust people who are absolutely certain what should be done. Since she is one of those sorts of people and being so is absolutely smug and expects everyone to do exactly what she thinks needs to be done, she isn’t very happy about that message.

      1. Can’t wait for them to put her in the show.

        1. She needs to be an angry librarian or spinster middle school teacher.

          1. Or Karen.

        2. BOO. Boo Dana Schwartz. BOO.

      2. My view is that if you aren’t absolutely certain what should be done you should probably leave it alone.

      3. “Smug alert” is one of their best episodes. Watch it on DVD with the commentary turned on. They skewer people like this bitch even better than the episode itself, which is hilarious, on point, and even more accurate now than when it first aired. (In ‘07 I think).

    2. “Can anyone say things would genuinely have been worse in Russia if the Tsar had not been overthrown?”

      But the Tsar was not overthrown. He abdicated and appointed his brother Michael as his successor.

  6. she admits in passing failing that she hasn’t “been watching the show in recent seasons”

    FTFY

    1. Nice catch. I doubt she ever watched at all, certainly not with any regularity.

      1. No she probably watched and applauded when they poked fun at Christians and gun owners,thinking the creators were just like her. But it began to dawn on her that they didn’t stop there, but had the audacity to poke fun at everyone. Then she began to realize that they really weren’t like her. And wrong think must be punished.

  7. It’s hard not to feel morally superior if you’re politically disengaged. I should point out though that they don’t call them “politically engaged” these days, they’re called “woke”.

  8. South Park has instead simply created an army of douchebros who act more like Cartman

    Let’s see – Cartman is powerhungry and will do, and say anything, espouse any position no matter how hypocritical or contradictor, if it gets him power over people.

    Sounds like South Park is responsible for creating the Progressive wing.

    1. Allegedly.

  9. When your politics thrives on moral panics, someone saying it is foolish to panic is the enemy.

    1. Though there are many good answers, this cuts to the chase most effectively.

  10. It’s funny to hear somebody scolding South Park for not treating politics with the respect it deserves. Even if it’s on basic cable there’s only so much they can do and treating politics with the respect it deserves would just be a 30 minute version of 2girls,1cup and nobody’s gonna want to see that week after week.

    1. SQRLSY would.

      1. And Tulpa-Mary-Mary’s-Period-“.”-Satan would threadshit all day and all night!

        Hey Tulpa-Mary-Mary’s-Period-“.”-Satan… Your threadshitting is NOT getting ANY more interesting or funny! It is predictable and BORING!!! Whoever writes your code to generate you, needs to add some complexity and diversity to the algorithm, if you EVER want to get ANYWHERE near being interesting!

        1. He really does own you, doest he?

          1. I don’t obsess… I try to fend off the influence of evil people and stupid people.

            Do you (like me) devote a tiny bit of your time thinking of the lies of (Adolf Hitler, Joe Stalin, pick your worst enemy, live or dead) so-and-so? Do you think that evil and-or stupid should be fended off, or thwarted, in any way? Does evil and stupid now “own” you? … If you don’t give a damn about ANYTHING, you might as well be a rock or a log!

            Do I own you? If not, why did you bother to comment?

            1. ” I try to fend off the influence of evil people and stupid people.”

              And yet you’re still breathing, obsessopottamus.

              1. Look, everyone! I “own” Tulpa the Tull-Pooper, who obsesses about me, all day, every day!

                Among the 7 (or so) neurons (at most) in the so-called “brain” of Tulpa the Tull-Pooper, the 3 neurons dedicated to obsessessing about me, live right next door, to the 4 neurons dedicated to thoughts about eating lama poop and llama and lllama poop, and ALL other kinds of poop, that you can shake a stick at!

                1. Obsess harder, shit eater.

                2. Look, everyone! I “own” Tulpa the Tull-Pooper, who obsesses about me, all day, every day!

                  *cringe*

                  1. “Tull-Pooper”

                    And he wonders why people call him an obsessive shit eater.

                    1. How many crazy posts does it take to prove one is not obsessed?

            2. You said you want to eat shit, he pointed it out, and you’ve been shit posting constantly ever since.

              Grow the fuck up. You said something dumb and expected it to go nowhere and when it stuck you lost your mind.

              Had you just not been an obsessive weirdo it never would have gone past day one, Hihn

              1. You can’t really blame him, the obsession and weird religiosity where he centers himself as the hero of the narrative despite being the worst offender is a hallmark of a schizoid disorder. He’s clearly very seriously mentally ill and well in the throes of his obsessive and disorder thinking patterns.

                  1. Yes, thread shit more to protest thread shitting. The guy made a joke. Two words. And you posted how many times because it pissed you off so much?

                    1. Yeah, CDSchrader, it looks like I “own” a significant part of your sub-micro-nano-picoscopic brain now! Which part of your brain is bigger now, the part that obsesses about SQRLSY One, or the part that obsesses about shit-eating?

                      THE WHOLE UNIVERSE IS HOLDING ITS BREATH, awaiting your oh-so-deep responses to these oh-so-deep questions!

                      YOU can not stop YOUR thread-shitting, can you? Who are you, a Tulpa clone among millions of Tulpa clones?

                    2. Cry more Hihn.

                    3. YOU can not stop YOUR thread-shitting, can you?

                      By your logic I’m fighting evil. Make up your mind.

                    4. And stupidity.

                    5. “By your logic I’m fighting evil. Make up your mind.”

                      Well, the difference is, you’re evil, and I’m not!

                      Tulpa (and Tulpa-butt-suckers) would MUCH rather talk about shit-eating, than the moral and ethical issues of the day! It happens again and again and again!

                      Tulpa the Trumpsucker (as shown by who Tulpa tries to poop on) is well known as a hater of illegal sub-humans. So then, if you have ANY pretenses of dealing with issues more serious than poop-eating… PLEASE answer me this:

                      I know how to treat others the way that I would like to be treated. It’s that simple. “Others” includes those that evil people like to call illegal sub-humans, and so forth. If “others to be treated as we like to be treated”, in your “ethics”, does NOT include those born on the wrong side of the railroad tracks (river, mountains, invisible lines in the sand, yada-yada), then WHERE did you get your so-called “ethics”? God? Evolution? The cosmos? Karma? Democracy? Keep in mind that our “democracy” has blessed slavery, Jim Crow, no votes for women, concentration camps for Japanese-Americans, and on and on…
                      FROM WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR ETHICS HERE?
                      I have repeatedly asked this question (especially with regards to illegal sub-humans), and I NEVER get answers from the bigots!!!

                    6. That giant wall of mental illness will definitely convince people you’re not obsessed

                    7. Once more, Tulpa (and Tulpa-butt-suckers-or-clones like CDSchrader) would MUCH rather talk about shit-eating, and call others names, instead of REALLY discussing the issues of the day! Color me SHOCKED!!!

                    8. Well, the difference is, you’re evil, and I’m not!

                      Which is of course what an evil thread shitter would say as they shat up the thread, evilly.

                      Like you have.

                    9. Obsess harder, shit eater.

                    10. And there it is, Ladies and Germs! Both CDSchrader and Tull-Poopy (perhaps one and the same) DECLINE to discuss issues of ethics (and their lack of such ethics), in favor of discussions about shit-eating and grade-school-level name-calling! HERE is witnessed, the last refuges of brainless and amoral / immoral imbeciles!

                    11. So then, it is confirmed on all fronts… Both CDSchrader and Tull-Poopy have just BARELY enough neural fire-power to discuss SOME aspects of shit-eating, and are capable of grade-school-level insults… But, when SERIOUS matters come up, they run and hide!

                      Hey people… We make fun of pretentious people who fancy themselves as being “morally superior” and-or “intellectually superior”, and smug, self-righteous people ***DO*** deserve to be made fun of! Yet… Human affairs are complicated here… Mahatma Gandhi WAS morally superior to Adolf Hitler, and Albert Einstein WAS intellectually superior to Tulpa, CDSchrader, and L. Ron Hubbard put together! Don’t let that escape you! And as we have just now demonstrated, toadstools and slime molds are both morally AND intellectually superior to both CDSchrader and Tull-Poopy!

                    12. Sqrsly seriously do you think anyone even bothers to read your post anymore? You are just as bad as Hihn and his multiple socks and Re Kirkland. We see the name and just skip over what you say to instead make fun of you. Because there rarely is ever anything intelligent. Every so often you actually make some good posts but unfortunately they get lost in your noise.

                    13. soldiermedic76, do you enjoy Tulpa’s posts more? Or those of Shitsy Shitler? Or R Mac? I’m trying to keep us out of the bottom of the gutter here! WHERE are your objections to the mindlessness of the REAL thread-shitters? Or are the Republican-Church-oriented threadshitters more palatable to you?

                      Especially, do you enjoy the clarion calls towards suicide, written by Shitsy Shitler?

                    14. No, they are boring and I’ve told them that too. But you have also pulled the same gambit on me multiple times, the first couple of times completely unprovoked so don’t try and act the martyred saint here.

                    15. Wait, what were we talking about, here?

                      Haha

                  2. Two words. Says a lot about his mental state

              2. CDSchrader, you eat shit just about every day, if you eat any processed foods!

                https://www.foxnews.com/food-drink/maggots-rat-hair-mouse-poop-and-more-gross-things-the-fda-allows-in-food
                Maggots, rat hair, mouse poop and more: Gross things the FDA allows in food

                Worse yet, you find Tulpa-poop less offensive than the poop in your food!

                1. Unlike you, however, he never said that he WANTS to. You WANT to. You said it.

                  And we can tell by your obsessive focus on it Hihn, that it’s the real reason why you obsess about me. You hate being known as the guy who eats shit. And that I outed you as Hihn, shit eater.

                  1. You WANT to be a thread-shitting empty-headed evil moron! Get a LIFE, empty-headed one! Live would be MUCH better that way! Try it some time, just a WEEE tad? For YOUR good?

                    1. Live would be MUCH better that way!”

                      Lol

          2. You can own her too if you want. It’s quite easy.

  11. My point was that South Park seemed to teach that it was always cooler to be reactionary and contrarian,

    Ah, yes, “reactionary”, the favorite accusation totalitarian socialists like to lob against anybody who opposes them; it’s usually followed by labor camps or summary execution once people using the word come into power.

    In any case, I don’t see where South Park teaches that it is “always” cooler; to the degree that it teaches that one should have contempt for people like Dana Schwartz, that’s a good thing as far as I’m concerned.

    1. Reactionary is what they call anyone who questions all their unstated assumptions.

      South Park challenges anyone and everyone.

  12. Aside from her critique missing the mark, I think her suggestion that South Park has had any effect on “a generation of boys” is off as well. The show’s viewers skew older. I find more fans that are middle-aged cynics rather than impressionable teenagers.

    1. I was pleasantly surprised my teenaged cousin and his friends have started watching south park and playing the video games.

      South Park is literally one of the only shows, if not the ONLY show, to ever truly make fun of progressives, which is why they are so mad. They want another Daily Show or whatever where it’s entirely one way and their religious cult is never questioned.

      1. The South Park Token character. Literally exposing how Lefties use Token Black people for their agendas (affirmative action). Yet in the show, Token and his family are one of the richest families in South park, Colorado.

        1. LOL the right never uses token black republicans. What fucking planet?

    2. I remember when it first came out my mother freaking out thinking it was aimed at kids and was so terrible. She sometimes can believe the scolds common misbeliefs, I mean she had a freak out when I played Dungeons and Dragons with some friends on a Knowledge Bowl trip in high school because she had seen on 20/20 or Dateline or 60 minutes that kids committed suicide or became santanist after playing D&D. I serve on my (Lutheran) church council and she watched a few episodes with us. She has since learned to dismiss the “common” knowledge. I would like to think I’ve helped her with that (to be fair to her, she learned it from my Grandma, who was lovely woman but very prudish). She so become far more open minded as she has gotten older. Once opposed marijuana legilisation and gay marriage, now sees neither would impact her and so doesn’t care.

      1. She actually now complains about the prudes (many of who happen to be on the left) at her church. She lives in a bedroom community of Moscow, ID and Pullman, WA.

  13. To be clear, I don’t blame the show itself as much as I do the generation of boys who internalized it into their personalities.

    Talk about a cry de ceur. Look lady, it isn’t South Park’s fault that people laugh at you and won’t take you seriously. Instead of blaming boys and South Park, you should try being less of a conformist shrew.

  14. The other thing is that South Park is just as brutal to conservatives and people on the right as they are towards liberals. Yet, it is only liberals who ever seem to complain about the show. It is almost like liberals are humorless assholes or something.

    1. Something isn’t funny if it’s a joke. Something is only funny if it’s unfunny and just woke.

      Samantha Bee, Trevor Noah, etc, are some of the most unfunny people you will ever see. But the seals clap because they agree with the message, not that they are funny. It’s not laughter, it’s ‘clap-ter’

      1. Unfunny is putting it mildly. In contrast, some of the funniest episodes of South Park are ones making fun of Christians and other people on the right. These idiots hate South Park despite the fact that South Park does a better job of satirizing their political opponents than they will ever do.

        1. it’s because they don’t understand humor or have any perspective, they are a cult.

          It’s why the left can’t meme. They don’t understand meme’s and the messages behind them; they think it’s just random crap or stating your opinion. So whey they meme it’s cringe and terrible, because they don’t actually know what a meme is.

          South Park can parody conservatives well because they understand them. Leftists don’t actually understand anything out of their worldview, and there have been studies to back this up, which is why all of their attempts at parody fall flat

          1. Yeah. You can’t do satire without understanding your subject. Back in the 60s and 70s, liberals understood the old establishment they were satirizing. So, liberal comics were funny. In contrast, the establishment didn’t understand the youth culture at all. So, the establishment attempts to satirize it were nearly always not funny.

            At some point in the 90s liberalism became a cult and they lost any ability to understand conservatives. And with it they lost their ability to be funny.

            1. That and the Lefty desire for control was such that the jokes write themselves.

            2. Left-wing commentary and satire has largely been a useless circle-jerk since its high-water mark with Colbert scuzzing Bush with the “reality has a liberal bias” crack at the Correspondents Dinner. These guys became way too high on their own supply and lost whatever bite they had because their colleagues in the MSM were always kissing their ass. Like I’ve said before, they’re stuck in this intellectual timeloop where it’s always 2004, and they think their commentary will still carry any weight beyond their own tribe.

              Colbert’s a great example of this, because the only time his stuff goes viral anymore is when he acts like an unfunny version of Sam Kinison, or his audience gets scolded for reacting to his soundbites the wrong way. With his muse in O’Reilly long gone and his fellow ideologues dominating mass media from news networks to , he has nothing to riff from anymore and his creativity is shot. He’s basically reduced to doing cringe-worthy Boomer jokes now.

              Like Bane said to Batman, “Peace has cost you your strength.
              Victory has defeated you.” These guys completely lost their edge during the Obama years, and thus their ability to create biting satire. That’s why even their one successful meme in the last 15 years, Orange Man Bad, was turned into a joke by the right. Parker and Stone continue to create fresh content for the very reason that they find the entire political and cultural elite that they joined 20 years ago to be a bunch of pretentious assholes.

              1. When Bush was in power they were attacking the powers that be. Once Obama came in, they just became pro government propaganda. But even before that, they had stopped being funny. They were not that funny when they went after Bush and especially his supporters. They didn’t understand either and thus couldn’t put any truth to their satire.

                1. Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy and Bill Engvall were/are such hits among rural Americans because, despite the jokes being aimed at us, they also tend to have a lot of truth and are just as much aimed at the comedians.

                  1. And Rob “Tater Salad” White reminds us of the uncouth uncle or friend every one of us have, but won’t admit to.

                    1. Ron, fucking autocorrect.

      2. Clap-ter

        I like that
        Good call

    2. FYI: They usually make a new South Park episode in less than 6 days during the regular season.
      6 Days to Air: The Making of South Park | Comedy Central Docu Review

      While every episode is not a gem, many are. That means that Trey, Matt and the SP team are so good at satire that they create a new animated episode, for probably the best cartoon show in human history, every week.

    3. There were plenty of conservatives complaining about the vulgarity and irreverancy in the early years, most of it from the Religious Right. But that stalled out right around the early 2000s, and most of the show’s viewers came to appreciate its no-holds-barred approach to politics and culture.

      1. True. But the complaints were “oh my god they have small children swearing” not “oh my God they are making fun of us”.

      2. I posted above about my mother who had a similar reaction. Truth be told until I watched it I also half believed the hype. But after about 2 or 3 episodes I fell in love with it.

    4. Most of the liberals I know love the show. This is just another case where a few far-left moral scolds are given way too much attention.

    5. The left has become a form of received wisdom, but few if any proponents can make any serious supporting arguments, yet they also don’t want to admit that it is actually a faith.

      Meanwhile people who openly accept their religion tend to accept criticism, like that from South Park, with at least some grace.

      1. Except Scientologist. But killing Chef after making him a pedophiles and resurrecting him as a Darth Vader like character was pure genius in response to Scientologist Isaac Hayes tantrum.
        Just like how blowing up that fat fuck Michael Moore (on Team America in effigy was payback for him misquoting them on his “documentary” Bowling for Columbine. I don’t think Trey and Matt have yet forgotten that, much less forgiven.

        1. They could make Team America today and change nothing but the N. Korean dictator to Un and it would be spot on 15 years later. Same liberal douchebags whining the same crap. Timeless.

          1. Yep.

    6. Bullshit, righties get the panties in a bunch just as much as lefties, don’t act like they aren’t a bunch of pussies too.

  15. The reason the “grown-ups” don’t like South Park is because it teaches young men to mock the ridiculous hysterics of the serious crowd.

    1. $5 dollars says Schwartz is a very serious feminist who has loudly opposes toxic masculinity.

  16. I’m sorry, did a Leftist just complain about the notion that “mockery is the ultimate inoculation against all criticism”.

    Does… does the Left have any other tactic besides mockery?

    1. A complete lack of self-reflection.

      1. When has it been any other way? RevKirk bitching about bigotry by being the biggest bigot of them all?

    2. How dare you!

    3. does the Right?

  17. In WHAT alternate reality are we a more “tolerant” society?

    A quick look at the passing scene would seem to suggest otherwise.

    1. Really? Take gay marriage, even many who opposed it now support it or simply don’t fucking care anymore.

      1. And the tolerance for those who oppose? You confuse (enforced) silence with agreement. We are a more divided and censorious society than at any time in my 50 years.

        There is more to freedom than sticking you dick up some guy’s ass

        1. Lol they can mind their own fucking business. A gay couple ain’t doing nothing to you. I’m glad they got the right to vote. Now even the haters gotta deal with it. I laugh every time I think about it.

          1. marry! shit!

    2. We are in many ways better from what I recall the world I grew up in and as a young man.

      The role of women and women’s rights is one example.

      Race is much better, there are still worrisome rough spots but on the whole much improved.

      Soldier brought up gay rights and gay marriage which is a tremendous civil rights victory.

      I think people who are younger think of the 60s and 70s as some bucolic past. It was not at all. It was tumultuous and game changing. Things we take for granted like a biracial kiss (the first on TV was Capt. Kirk and Ohura. It was met with shock and outrage)
      Those things are nothing now.

      Someone I always admired Sammy Davis Jr. had to enter the hotels where he was going to perform through the back door.

      Women were only expected to do certain jobs. Nurses were all female. Doctors were nearly all men and are 50% or more are women now.

      To just be gay was dangerous and unacceptable. Public figures and near all homosexuals hid their sexuality. Now we have an openly gay married man running for president.

      It is far from perfect. I don’t think we will ever get there but much better.

  18. She’s just pissed that a generation of boys didn’t grow up to be rapid progressive justice warriors. Fuck her and her conformist mentality.

  19. Dana is a towel.

    Tim-meh!

    1. You’re a towel!

  20. Pretty sure the Andy Griffith show warped my sense of reality growing up.

    – There are no black people (in North Carolina!)
    – The law is whatever Sheriff Taylor says it is
    – Alcohol is a sin and moral failing
    – Outsiders are crooks and never to be trusted
    – Women have a choice of being a teacher, nurse, or housekeeper. (The former two being spinsters desperate for marriage)
    – If you are a little boy little girls are invisible
    – There is an outside world. It is called Mt. Pilot

    Ok I actually think it was a good show up until Don Knotts left and Otis cleaned up.

    1. This woman would watch that show and decide being the down drunk was a harmless activity with no real downsides.

      1. Didn’t we see this brand of Helen Lovejoy ‘think of the children’ and PMRC with nags like Tipper Gore?

        Sheesh, fuck off already you nitwits.

        I remember when Judas Priest was being blamed for suicides.

        Fucken numbskulls.

        1. Judas Priest

          I remember that.

          And Blue Oyster Cult as well.

      2. And Aunt Bea would bring you breakfast and coffee to sober you up in the morning.

        I read somewhere that the actor who played him was pretty much a teetotaler in real life. Along with Foster Brooks one of the great drunk acts of all time.

        1. Dean Martin was not much of a drinker either. His whole always drunk on stage act was him making fun of all of his friends and the people he knew in Hollywood who had these squeaky clean images but were in fact falling down drunks most of the time.

  21. The only thing South Park has really taught is that once any ideology becomes dogmatic, its instantly insufferable and ripe for mockery.

    1. Pretty much. If there was such a thing as the ultimate answer or one ideology that answered every issue, everyone would have figured that out by now.

      1. I wonder if Eroll ‘The Pearl Clutching Fellini Documentarian Extraordinaire’ thinks South Park led to Trump.

        Who knows anymore how they think? I stopped trying to understand and quite frankly don’t give a shit.

      2. There is an ultimate answer. We know that.

        42

        Now if we could just figure out the question.

        I read that Gorsuch used to use that in his law lectures which makes me like him.

    2. The episodes with Richard Dawkins and the atheist otters were classics. So many atheist I know act as dogmatic as many Christian fundamentalist. I love when they tell me (who has actually published in peer reviewed science journals and am a tenure track science professor, off campus) that I can’t both be a scientist and a Christian because science proves God doesn’t exist. I always answer the best answer, scientifically speaking is agnosticism, because you can neither prove nor disprove the existence of God (it is a scientific impossibility to prove a negative, you can never test the null hypothesis). Anything else besides die hard agnosticism (neither believe nor disbelieve) requires faith of some sort.

      1. Correct.
        There is an equal amount of faith in “god isn’t” as “god is”
        But religious zealots tend to be poor listeners

        1. I am a believer who admits I can’t prove God exists. I admit it all based on faith (which Jesus actually states those who believe but haven’t seen are blessed).

        2. I’m an atheist who doesn’t mind at all if people believe in god. It doesn’t hurt me and it’s none of my business. But I don’t stand for that “equal amount of faith” bullshit. Believing in something for which there is no evidence takes faith. Not believing is just the default position. And I’ll bet you agree with me, without even thinking about it, when it comes to every subject other than god. Surely you don’t think it takes faith to believe that dragons and fairies aren’t real.

          1. “I’ll bet you agree with me, without even thinking about it, when it comes to every subject other than god.”

            And for every god except his own. As an atheist, I just disbelieve in one more god than Jews, Christians, and Muslims (although my Jehovah’s Witness grandparents would have said it was three less than most Christians).

      2. It’s turtles all the way down.

        I am a believer as well. I am medical. Interesting saw a recent study that 36% of scientists believe in God while 76% of medical doctors do. I mean both are highly educated and science based right?

        1. Belief in God is much higher in biologist and related fields then in physicist also. People who study living systems have a higher belief in a supreme power.

      3. “Flying spaghetti monster”?

        Even their sense of humor is so damn boring. Maybe that’s why they don’t like South Park.

      4. I don’t understand why some atheists feel they have to prove their point. I just shrug my shoulders.

        I guess the best answer I could give is a story about a famous Rabbi. Hillel.

        He was challenged by a Roman centurion to explain his whole religion while standing on one foot.

        He got up and said “do not do unto others what is hateful unto thee. The rest is commentary”

        I think if people could manage that it would be a better world.

  22. “things that happen in cartoons aren’t real.”

    This is outright realityism.

    1. So bugs bunny wasn’t actually a cross dresser? Who knew.

      1. Bugs bunny nudged Elmer towards homosexual bestiality

    2. I’m still working out my issues with Fractured Fairy Tales from Rocky and Bullwinkle.

      BEST CARTOON EVER.

      1. I’ll check it out in my way-back machine.

      2. Was Boris Trump’s Russian cut-out?

        1. Natashawas the one in the pee tape.

  23. Critics say the long-running satiric cartoon has created “a generation of boys” who are smug and disengaged.

    And? As a Gen Xer, I was smug and disengaged before it was cool to be smug and disengaged.

    1. Detached irony is a lot more palatable for these types when it only goes in one direction.

  24. I would love to see South Park do an episode on Reason’s incurable TDS, and the relationship of TDS to the growth of urban planning graduates. Reason cocktails with the nouveau urbanists at the sodosopa hipster bar in South Park.

  25. Everything started in 2016.

    EVERYTHING.

    1. Trump is everything the left fears. He’s the boogeyman who stands in the face of their childish tantrums and tells them no. Triggered does not even begin to describe the amount of angst his existence causes to their psyches every day.

  26. both sides are equally terrible so the only correct thing to do is nothing, while mocking it all from your position of intellectual superiority

    right

    1. I mean, that’s pretty objectively true.

      1. If Reason writers genuinely believe that, it explains their demented behavior, but not the logical errors it took to get there.

        1. Are you trying to say that both parts of TEAM BE RULED aren’t equally terrible?

    2. I would only remove the word “equally”.

  27. While the earliest seasons might be accurately described as a nuclear train wreck of nihilistic fuckery, for the majority of the show’s lifetime it has pushed a fairly strong message of respect and tolerance for diverse people and that they should be judged on their words and actions, not things like race and sex. The show certainly doesn’t have any sacred cows and isn’t above making fun of anyone they feel needs to be taken down a peg, but it also doesn’t indiscriminately bash people who care about things and in fact often mocks people specifically for not caring when they should. I’m left assuming that most of South Park’s critics simply lack any substantial familiarity with the material.

    1. They lack the ability and honesty necessary to understand the material.

  28. A Twitter thread started by novelist, podcaster, and TV writer Dana Schwartz caught enough buzz to get trending on the micro-blogging site.

    And here you are giving her more free exposure.

    1. Clickbait. KMW at work. It’s all about the clicks.

      The best thing they could do is win the Glibs back. They were 70% of the traffic. But to do that Reason would have to be more libertarian. Not likely. Sorry Matt, Nick, and KMW.

      1. So, no libertarian moment, is what you are saying?

  29. Political apathy and moral superiority are the twin pillars of Reason style libertarianism.

  30. Christ, what a cunt.

  31. My wife showed me a Facebook post last night of some retard on twitter bashing libertarians.

    You know the Democrats are scarred when they start going after libertarians and people in the middle like Matt & Trey.

    1. Like I’ve told RevKirk, if your side was truly winning you wouldn’t have to keep telling everyone and trying to convince them.

      1. Or:
        If your sign says “world famous burgers”, they’re not.

  32. Schwartz? Surprising.

    She reminds me of the stupid, shallow, contemptuous, arrogant teachers I had in high school..and South Park are the astute, intelligent, and honestly smarter than the teachers “smart ass” kids. Her attempt at gender disrespect “boys” exposes her cultural marxism….total woke…

  33. “(the youth vote for the 2018 midterms was the highest in decades)”

    And they voted for the candidates espousing tolerance, skepticism and leaving other people alone?

  34. It’s always the *boys* that are the problem. Funny, that.

  35. Political Apathy might just come from the facts that our only effective voting choices are team red or team blue, that the system is rigged that way and there appears to be no way to change it (and locally, our only choices are “no team labels” and absolutely nothing in candidate statements or local reporting to tell us what political bent they are – and they usually end up being nanny state assholes).

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  37. OMG. They killed Kenny! You bastards!

  38. The overriding scheme of Southpark is to be skeptical of the powers that be and think shit through. They do it in a funny way that has poked fun at both climate nazis and real nazis. Fuck those people who don’t like independence and want people to just fall in line behind them in with their pitchforks and dumbasses yelling “rabble rabble rabble dey tuk er jerbs” . Good going SouthPark, may you stay around for a long time.

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  40. I’m a fan, but i’m Trying to think of an episode of South Park where they attacked someone with real power in the United States. Have they done something to parody the military, right-wing news, the GOP. Other then employ both-sides isn, have they gone after Trump in any meaningful way? I mean yes it’s funny, but brave? No.

    1. “I mean yes it’s funny, but brave? No.”

      Salman Rushdie. The Satanic Verses. Brave, yes, funny no. I couldn’t for the life of me get into it. Midnight’s Children on the other hand is a work of the highest order. Maybe not so brave, but a fantastic look into India’s founding.

    2. You really need to switch back to your regular handle if you’re not even going to try to stay in character. This is why OBLT is so much better than you.

    3. Go after Trump in some meaningful way?

      Uh….

      Don’t comment on stuff that you have no knowledge of. It makes you look stupid.

      They spent an entire season on ridiculing Trump and only Trump. A whole season.

      They have a character that is entirely devoted to lampooning Trump. The formerly gay, formerly transgender, former school teacher turned fake politician and now President, Mr. Garrison. He ran for office as a joke, tried his best to lose. And became president.

      But nah… they didn’t have the stones to take on Trump.

      Sheesh.

  41. When given a choice between Giant Douche and Turd Sandwich, I choose to not vote.

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  43. To be clear, I don’t blame academia itself as much as I do the generation of SJWs who internalized it into their personalities. Which maybe isn’t acadamia’s fault!

  44. Postmodern irony and cynicism’s become an end in itself, a measure of hip sophistication and literary savvy. Few artists dare to try to talk about ways of working toward redeeming what’s wrong, because they’ll look sentimental and naive to all the weary ironists. Irony’s gone from liberating to enslaving. There’s some great essay somewhere that has a line about irony being the song of the prisoner who’s come to love his cage.

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  46. Dang, I missed this one!

    Well, if you stumble upon this late, I have the right answer. These people are idiots, and are too stupid to understand South Park.

    There, feel better knowing the true answer?

    South Park always turns on you. That’s their thing. They set you up by taking “your side” and then they point out why you are wrong. Usually in hilarious fashion. That’s a teachable moment. That’s why it is great.

    Most famous example: The Mormon episode. They spend the entire episode completely destroying everything about the Mormon faith. They just relentlessly ridicule it.

    And at the end, the little Mormon kid comes out and speaks to Stan – but he’s really speaking to us. And he says ” All I ever did was try to be your friend, Stan, but you’re so high and mighty you couldn’t look past my religion and just be my friend back. You’ve got a lot of growing up to do, buddy. Suck my balls. [turns around and walks off. All four boys just look at him in wonder.]”

    That is one of the best moments in TV, and it is exemplary of South Park. They take direct aim at the audience.

    That’s why South Park is funny, and the Daily Show is banal.

    1. “That’s why South Park is funny…”

      Some things are irresistibly comic. Falling off a chair, slipping on a banana peel, Mormons. Not brave, not challenging, not all that funny.

  47. Blame it on Canada.

  48. these guys are funny but when they talk, they sound like a dumb person’s idea of what a smart person sounds like.

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