The world in black and white

Does some of the criticism directed at Obama have to do with race?  Undoubtedly.  Does that mean the people from whom it issues are frothing at the mouth KKK-style racists?  No, obviously not.  Someone please tell David Brooks.  Here he is describing his experience last week at the 9/12 protests: You wouldn’t know it to … Continue reading The world in black and white

Play their game

From Eric Alterman at the Nation: A week before his 2009 inauguration, President-elect Barack Obama chose as his first high-profile social engagement a dinner party at George Will’s house, where he was joined by William Kristol, Charles Krauthammer and David Brooks. Obama no doubt intended to demonstrate his desire to reach across the ideological divide and … Continue reading Play their game

You don’t say

  Today I want to borrow something particularly interesting from No More Mister Nice Blog.  Much of our work here, as we head into our ninth year, involves pointing out the flaws in people’s arguments.  I still think that’s an important job after all the years.  But here, thanks to NMMNB, is an instance in … Continue reading You don’t say

Thought flatulence

Sentence of the day, Jason Linkins of the Huffington Post: And The New York Times' Thomas Friedman has aided this delusion by blundering around in a fog of his own thought-flatulence, wondering where the "grand bargain" was. (The "grand bargain" was always available via download.) I have read no more descriptive phrase of the Brooks-Friedman … Continue reading Thought flatulence

You can fool some of the people all of the time

Here's David Brooks in 2009: You wouldn’t know it to look at me, but I go running several times a week. My favorite route, because it’s so flat, is from the Lincoln Memorial to the U.S. Capitol and back. I was there last Saturday and found myself plodding through tens of thousands of anti-government “tea … Continue reading You can fool some of the people all of the time

Opposition party

The other week I was going to post something about how Obama reads criticism closely and takes it seriously.  This, I think, is a praiseworthy intellectual habit.  Perhaps the following item, however, means that he is taking it too far: Barack Obama took the next big step in his Republican charm offensive on Tuesday night, … Continue reading Opposition party

Foro Italico

The low cost of energy, federal subsidies in the form of expressways (but not public transportation) fueled (!) a migration of people out to that land of autonomy, low taxes, and self-sufficiency, the suburbs and exurbs.  Now of course people have realized that those place are soul-crushingly monotonous places to spend one's days.  David Brooks … Continue reading Foro Italico

Blooming Idiocracy

Oftentimes, there's something inspiring about a person so rigidly dedicated to a particular ideology that not even the existence of contrary facts can sway them. In that vein, there's a movie line that's always stuck in my mind: "Uncompromising men are easy to admire." Nothing could be more apropos of that sentiment than today's sycophantic … Continue reading Blooming Idiocracy