Tuesday, November 01, 2016

David Brooks Has Time Enough At Last


I admit that I showed off a little last week when I got up in front of an audience of literally dozens of readers to demonstrate the third most useless superpower in the world: accurately predicting how Mr. David Brooks of the New York times is going to react during any given week as the depraved political party and ideological movement to which he has devoted his entire career collapsed around him.
This week, I am forced against my better judgement to give myself extra-credit for today's column by Mr. David Brooks of the New York Times wherein he changed to a slightly different rocking chair on the same fucking porch to whittle and treat America to some of his patented pseudo-rabbinical argle bargle as he exhorts his readers to look away, look away, oh please look away from the scary sight of the complete collapse of Mr. Brooks' depraved political party and ideological movement and instead read more Martin Buber and be nicer to each other, damn it!:
Read Buber, Not the Polls!

David Brooks NOV. 1, 2016
So this first line has to be a joke, right?   Something a disgruntled intern slipped in?
If America were a marriage we’d need therapy.
Because who in their right mind would be taking marriage counseling advice from a guy who spent most of his career hectoring The Poors on the Perils Of Broken Families And Disordered Communities ... while coping with his own marriage going Boom! by simple refusing to speak about it at all and relying on his cronies in the media to never mention it until that one time when Brian Lamb did?

But then again, I am one of the Poors and I do come from a broken home and my community (or at least my living room) is somewhat disordered, so what do I know?

Anyway, moving on from the appetizer to the fish course, how about a big, reeking portion of Both Siderism, pan-fried in hubris and rotten from the head down?
There has been so much bad communication over the past year: people talking in warring monologues past each other, ignoring the facts and using lazy stereotypes like “elites” and “Trumpeans” to reduce complex individuals into simplistic categories. Meanwhile, our main candidates are poor connectors. We’ve got the self-enclosed narcissism of Donald Trump and, to a lesser degree, the mistrustful defensiveness of Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
And then the main course, in which Mr. Brooks -- safe in his bubble of wealth and privilege and far from any personal or financial consequences of the collapse of his depraved political party and ideological movement -- gathers together that handful of New York plutocrat shut-ins who underwrite his career and reads aloud to them the happy-happy stories they want to hear:
As an antidote for all this, I’ve been reading the work of Martin Buber, the early 20th century Jewish theologian who dedicated his career to understanding deep intimacy. Buber is famous for the distinction between I-It relationships and I-Thou relationships.
And now we're off to the fucking races:
I-It relationships come in two varieties...

I-Thou relationships, on the other hand, are personal, direct, dialogical — nothing is held back... 


Some people go through life with a detached posture, trying to self-differentiate themselves and be more sophisticated than others... 

Others adopt a guard-down posture that is openhearted and open-minded...
Like Mr. Henry Bemis, Mr. Brooks now looks out upon the rubble of the world and sees a chance to finally catch up on his reading.


But unlike Henry Bemis, Mr. Brooks was not an inconsequential little man working in an inconsequential little job, taking his breaks in the vault so he could read undisturbed.

Instead, Mr. Brooks has been one of the foremost architects of the disaster from which he is now in full retreat. It is no exaggeration to say that Mr. Brooks has worked his whole professional life for the Republican Party and Conservative Movement and profited hugely thereby.  He helped them built the mighty engines of ideological destruction that are tearing up to bits.  He helped bolt them together and polish them up.  He gave Conservatism's shitty ideas and maniacs in Brooks Brother's suits all the  respectability they needed to get in and good and close so they could wreck the country from the inside.

And now, sitting high above the ruins. Mr, Brooks wants to burble on about Exodus and Martin Buber and what "Americans" need to do to fix the mess he made.

You know, as a man of peace, Poor and Disordered, though I may be, I do not wish for Mr. Brooks to come to any physical harm.

But I do wish that, once and for all. his glasses should fall and shatter into one million pieces.





Behold, a Tip Jar!




10 comments:

Jack Wibbe said...

You are hereby banned from writing any more articles on David Brooks, both-siderism, and I-told-you-sos.
This in the Internet Police.
Step away from the keyboard and nobody gets hurt.

And by the way, the FBI is stealing the election. Comey has hit Hillary on emails, hidden the Russia/Trump probe, and has now hit BILL Clinton on the Marc Rich thing. Might want to take a look.

Lawrence said...

"Like Mr. Henry Bemis, Mr. Brooks now looks out upon the rubble of the world and sees a chance to finally catch up on his reading."

What I'm getting is more like Steve Martin at the end of The Jerk, collecting random things as he leaves the house he's been evicted from while still dressed in a bathrobe.

Jack Wibbe said...

You are hereby banned from writing any more articles on David Brooks, both-siderism, or I-told-you-sos.
This is the Internet Police. Step away from the keyboard and nobody gets hurt.

By the way, the FBI is stealing the White House. After sandbagging Hillary on Huma's emails, and covering up the Russia/Trump story, Comey has now hit BILL Clinton on the Marc Rich case. Might want to take a look.

Hubert Vale said...

"Pseudo-rabbinical argue bargle" -- best line ever!

trgahan said...

Bothsides Brooks Rides Again! Where was this masked man of evenly-divided-America from 1980 to 1992 and 2000 to 2008...maybe that farm upstate where they store the DeficitHawks?

Meanwhile, I heard an actual journalist lament on a podcast:

"I am so sick of having to pretend this nation is divided 50/50 on every issue. Take the wall with Mexico. Maybe, at most, 20 percent of Americans actually want a wall built but I am not allowed to write that fact or my editor will say I am not being objective."

Gloucon X said...

A Superb post. Thanks.

PshootR said...

President Trump will be great for all forms of media. He will drive far more interest in news and events than any other recent president, more even than Ronald Reagan did. If you are in the news or media professions you should be supporting Donald Trump for President.

Unknown said...

People shouldn't do jobs they find unethical.

Habitat Vic said...

PshootR has brought sound logic to this liberal blogger hell-hole regarding the benefits of a Trump presidency. But not just the media would benefit. No sir. Let's go a step further.

tRump would significantly increase the likelihood of nuclear war, most likely a limited exchange - say in the Middle East. In the following years there would be world-wide tripling/quadrupling or more of cancer & related illness; particularly thyroid, luekemia, and so on (including children with cancer & birth defects). This would be a boon to oncologists and the healthcare industry overall. For example, my goddaughter is a radiologist. Just think of the increased demand - and salary! - due to all those people getting scanned for tumors. Good times! Good times, indeed.

That, my liberal friends, is the Randian beauty of the Free Market. I, for one, bow down to our new Fascist Overlords.

Neo Tuxedo said...

Meanwhile, at the point where far-left ecology meets far-right feudalism, we find John Michael Greer, former Archdruid of the Ancient Order of Druids in America, now founding Archdruid of the Order of the Celtic Golden Dawn:

http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com/2016/11/the-last-gasp-of-american-dream.html

The money quote, having just laid out the scenario of the USA suffering a Soviet-style collapse: "It’s by no means certain that a Trump presidency will stop that from happening, and jolt the United States far enough out of its current death spiral to make it possible to salvage something from the American experiment."

Isn't it a daisy? No, it's by no means certain, in the same way it's by no means certain that driving into a car crusher will jolt your car far enough out of its current death spiral to make it possible to salvage something drivable. It's by no means certain that Trump will stop the collapse of the United States in the same way it's by no means certain that cutting out your own intestines and wrapping them around your own neck like a fucking four-in-hand tie will jolt your body far enough out of its current death spiral to make it possible to salvage something of your health.

(I'm not going to post this comment, or if I am, I'm going to leave out the F-word, as the one thing guaranteed to get me not posted.)

This guy lives in Cumberland, MD, within driving distance of me, and I'm occasionally tempted to drive over there and show him some of the things Donald Trump has actually said, and also the discrepancy between what he says and what he does. But it wouldn't help. He's even further along the autism spectrum than I am, incapable of recognizing emotional reactions and possibly incapable of having them himself.