Are you having a d-bag over to your house for a dinner party? If you are beware — d-bags hate conspicuous displays of cultural capital almost as much as they hate Islamofascism and pedophilia. Do not try to impress a d-bag with hip, current music — leave your Third Eye Blind CDs out; do not pull out a party game to pass time after dinner (unless it’s beer pong); and most definitely do not make a conspicuous display of your recycling.
Why do d-bags despise recycling so fiercely? In the words of Daniel Akst, d-bag and columnist for the Wall Street Journal, “it appears that small families, childless couples or couples whose kids are grown are the main perpetrators of these bloated ecological vanities [i.e. houses designed to be ecologically friendly], whose primary ‘green’ quality is the envy that they must induce in other affluent people who would like to claim that they too live lightly upon the earth.”
It doesn’t get any better than that! This is also why d-bags hate “gifted” children, farmers’ markets, and organic food. Being socially conscious is considered by d-bags to be “vanity” and the most bloated vanity of all is the ecological variety. Mr. Akst writes about multi-million dollar “green” houses, but it does not bother him that these are exceptions and not the rule for most people who recycle or are concerned with conservation. For a d-bag conservation is at best a personal virtue and at worst a betrayal of the American dream of conspicuous waste.
Though conservation (as well as prudence, economy, and thrift) are anathema to d-bags because it is seen as an insincere pose intended to make the rest of us feel poor in our wealth, the d-bag ideal of conspicuous waste is also, in fact, a pose. D-bags don’t hate conspicuous consumption or immoderate wealth. Far from it! As Mr. Askt says, “there’s nothing wrong with wanting a large house, lots of privacy or a vacation home.” For a d-bag, showing off your ability to waste resources other people or future generations will need to live is a sign of your power. What d-bags hate is the personal freedom represented by cultural capital — the kind of wealth that you can’t buy at a store. It is the kind of intangible wealth that comes from application, hard work, experience and maturity that irks socially aspirant lower-middle class whites whose only intangible wealth has been the skin privilege attached to their white hides. Learning a foreign language because the culture is interesting and not because it has any immediate application (obscure, dead languages like Sanskrit are the paradigm of uselessness to a d-bag), shopping for clothes or furniture that are unusual and show your cultivation of a personal aesthetic, and hiding the impact of your labor on the environment contradict a d-bag’s understanding of what power is. For a d-bag power is material (guns and bling), it announces itself immediately with wasteful, ostentatious display, and it avoids confrontation by pretending to provoke it (see illustration to the left). By contrast, white people (let’s call them what they are: upper middle class Euro-Americans) cultivate power that displays elegance, refinement and the ability to defeat opponents and show status with subtle markers of generations of successful wealth creation. Also, by letting blow hards and braggarts embarrass themselves by making promises they can’t keep.
If you want to impress a d-bag at a dinner party (though why you would ever invite a d-bag to your house is a mystery), make sure to pile the table high with enough fast food to give Rush Limbaugh a heart attack, and proclaim loudly to your guests that you got all of it for half off by clipping coupons from the Sunday Saver section of the newspaper. Make parsimonious and moralistic displays of your consumption by purchasing the largest late model, American made vehicle you can’t afford and parking it in a handicapped space. Keep your windows and doors open all summer while cranking up the AC to the “arctic blast” setting. But most importantly always throw trash (paper sandwich wrappers, empty soda bottle and beer cans, used condoms) over the fence into your neighbor’s yard. Nothin’ says “d-bag” like conspicuous waste.