Republicans are in the midst of an insurrection. Democrats are not. This vast gulf between the situations of the two parties — not some grand revolt against “the establishment” or “incumbents” — explains the year’s primary results, including Tuesday’s jarring outcomes in Florida and Alaska. (emphasis added)
Merriam-Webster‘s dictionary offers these meanings of the word jarring:
1. a. to make a harsh or discordant sound
b. to have a harshly disagreeable or disconcerting effect
c. to be out of harmony
2. a. to affect disagreeably
b. to make unstable or loose
Here is a brief resume of Joe Miller, whose victory over Senator Porkbarrel Legacy causes such apparent distress to Mr. Dionne:
honors graduate, US Military Academy; J.D., Yale Law School; M.S. in Economics, University of Alaska; recipient of Bronze Star (which is awarded for “heroic or meritorious achievement or service”); former U.S. Magistrate Judge and currently in private law practice.
Among the words that might have occurred to Mr. Dionne instead of jarring to characterize the electoral victory of such a man over an incumbent U.S. Senator in a primary election are: amazing, astonishing, astounding, blindsiding, dumbfounding, eye-opening, flabbergasting, startling, stunning, or surprising. In fact, he’d have found every single one of them in an online thesaurus, to which he would have turned if he had the slightest commitment to basic journalistic decency and the ability to detect his own latent biases. Clearly, he lacks one or both of those most desirable traits in someone so insistent on being the voice of sweet reason in the Mask-Slipping Media.
If he’s not more careful, people might start suspecting that, to E. J. Dionne, the mainstream of American opinion is the middle ground among his fellow writers at the Post.