Friday, February 26, 2016

David Brooks' Life When It Is Written Will Read Better Than It Lived

The Liar in Winter.

Future Historians, gleaning the rubble of our civilization looking for clues as to how our free and fair press was smothered by frauds with pillows made of money, will find no more perfect example of what we call a "David Brooks Paragraph" than this fella right here:
Over the past generation we have seen the rise of a group of people who are against politics. These groups — best exemplified by the Tea Party but not exclusive to the right — want to elect people who have no political experience. They want “outsiders.” They delegitimize compromise and deal-making. They’re willing to trample the customs and rules that give legitimacy to legislative decision-making if it helps them gain power.
Mr. Brooks would like to write another column about how the Republican Party has lost its damn mind. Unfortunately, Mr. Brooks is a Conservative -- arguably the most famous and ubiquitous Conservative in America -- who has spent his entire career in the service of the Republican monstrosity his Party has become.  It's his child and he has spent most of his adult life feeding it, wiping its ass, covering up for it and bailing it out of jail over and over again.  He and his powerful friends had a decades-long agreement to look the other way as it grew from a bratty child to a full-blown fire-starting sociopath, while Mr. Brooks used his privileged position in the media to deflect any criticism of his devil baby and to mock the shit out of anyone who told the truth about it.

And then the beast -- now full grown, breathing fire and stomping every silly little Burkean antique on Mr. Brooks's knick-knack shelf to atoms -- came home.  And Mr. Brooks stood on the lawn of his burning house -- a house his thousands of lies about his bastard child had paid for -- and declared that he had no sons.

He had three whiskered things but he disowned them.

You're not mine!  We're not connected!  I deny you!  None of you will get my crown, I leave you nothing and I wish you plague! May all your children breach and die!

And thus we come to the main, load-bearing lie at the center of Mr. Brooks' column.  The same lie he has been getting rich peddling for years.  The one from which he will hang all the little lies which pad out his latest Both Siderist drivel
These groups — best exemplified by the Tea Party but not exclusive to the right — want to elect people who have no political experience.
No, Mr. Brooks.  There are no terrible and powerful but somehow unnameable "groups" out there on Left who are certifiably insane and have sworn blood oaths to never compromise and to scorch the Earth if they don't get 100% of what they want.  That is a coward's lie and you damn well know it.  There is also no "Tea Party".  In fact, there is no one out there smashing up the place except the same unhinged mob who have always been out there: the rage-drunk, paranoid, bigoted base of your Republican Party, behaving in exactly the way they were taught to behave by the big brains in your Conservative movement.

But this fact is the Weirding word for "death" in the Beltway Xanadu where Mr. Brooks and his collaborators reside, so it must never, ever be spoke aloud.  Which is why Mr. David Brooks -- the world's most ubiquitous Conservative Public Intellectual, globe-trotting lecturer on character and humility and Patient Zero of Republican Detachment Disorder -- managed to write an entire fucking column about the madness which has killed his Republican Party...

...without mentioning the word "Republican" at all.

They want “outsiders"

They delegitimize...

They’re willing to trample...

they don’t recognize other people...

They suffer from a form of political narcissism...

they don’t accept the legitimacy of...

They don’t recognize restraints.

They want total victories for themselves and their doctrine.

The antipolitics people elect legislators who have no political skills or experience...

The antipolitics people don’t accept...

They make soaring promises and raise ridiculous expectations...

The antipolitics people refuse compromise...

Ultimately the fault for all of this does not with David Brooks, who is nothing more than a weak and cowardly man who has found success by groveling on behalf of the plutocracy more diligently and devoutly than the rest of his peers.

The fault for all of this lies with everyone else in the media who does not laugh in his face, take away his keyboard and cut off his mic every time he starts to blather his drivel, and those in the general public who lovingly retweet this journalistic syphilis hundreds of times, passing it along as if it were the received wisdom of the Gautama Buddha.


bowtiejack said...

It appears that Mr. Brooks suffers from the "Pronoun Syndrome" variety of psychological projection (aka "blame shifting") whereby "humans defend themselves against their own unpleasant impulses by denying their existence while attributing them to others."

However, in Mr. Brooks' super-improved version the blame is shifted not to named individuals or real organizations but to untethered pronouns ("they", "them") and amorphous fantasy creations ("the Tea Party", other groups "not exclusive to the right"). Then (as you so perfectly deconstruct) in a perfect feedback loop, we learn that the "they" are people who do these things and that the people who do these things are the "they" - again though no names or home addresses or attribution to the original source:
“When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean - neither more nor less.” Alice in Wonderland

On a separate topic, in the Wikipedia entry on Psychological Projection, there is the following excellent example:
"For example, a person who is rude may constantly accuse other people of being rude."
Which could have been lifted right from Il Douche's resume!

waldo said...

Hey DG, you're really pumpin' out the product here, hard to keep up.
And man, it's cuttin'. But a few columns ago you wrote get ready for the ugliest election you have ever seen..
Hasn't that been a given ever since Forrest Trump's *disgusting harangue* campaign announcement 'speech'?

There's actually a list of his insults...
and that's just on twitter! His aggressive sales techniques having been honed by long years of bullying his way through meetings with clients who are impressed with bluster, braggadocio and bling, and his Mussolini pouting and posturing perfected for reality TV; why would he change now? And yes, put Hillary against him and he will (with able assistance from your favourite media persons) shred her to her composite iota.

But, there's a way to beat him and, really, to have him beat himself. And that answer has always been to present a candidate who's impervious to the Gimp's bile; to present a candidate whose career, political and personal ethics and personal life are beyond reproach; an experienced, issue focused candidate whose sole reason for being in politics is a genuine concern for his fellow man and a drive to achieve the best outcomes for the ordinary person, the poor, the disadvantaged and minorities; and a man whose record of achievement in politics is second to none.

So, DG, do you feel the Bern yet?

MCPlanck said...

I literally did not get past your first sentence.

"The liar in winter."

I need to spend another few minutes marveling at the f*cking awesomeness of that.

So, so, so perfect. The imagery is just... perfect.

It has always been a bloody crime that Brooks has a NYT column and you don't; but your four words are wiser, cleverer, and more eloquent than everything that useless hack has ever written.

Now I am going to go back to the article and try to stop reading just the first sentence. No promises, though.

MCPlanck said...

You missed one:

"We’re now at a point where the Senate says it won’t even hold hearings..."

The Senate! The Senate! The Senate says this! Not the Republicans, not the Judiciary committee, not the lunatics - the Senate!!!

If Mitch McConnell stood in a frog pond and shouted "The South shall rise again," Brooks would write, "Amazing! Frogs can speak!"

Batocchio said...

I have a friend who linked the Brooks piece approvingly -- and who blamed "both sides" but *did* also say the "political right" was worse. If Brooks can break through to some people who wouldn't have opposed Trump and the other Republican candidates otherwise, great -- but those of us who've followed him know what a self-serving hack he is.