Walking around like regular people.
They don't see each other.
They only see what they want to see.
They don't know they're dead.
Like a drunk dial from the Valley of the Dead, David Fucking Brooks' 800-word apparition ("The Oil Plume") came floating into the world of the living this morning.
It is a sad and murky piece of writing, suspended between this world and the next solely by the willpower of the author: by his fanatical desire to avoid even lightly alluding to things like “Republicans” or “Conservatives” while penning a column mourning the “nasty stasis” and gridlock that is destroying America’s ability to govern itself.
It is, in its own way, an almost perfectly fraudulent tour de force, basted loosely together out of cobwebs, detached abstractions and Bobo's own massive and barely sublimated sense of rage and panic: a strangely funereal tale populated with disembodied references to “the American people” that glide out of the oily fog of Bobo’s passive-voice and bump lazily into equally incorporeal references to “their” allegedly irrational demands and schizophrenic desires.
In Bobo's world, it is some headless mob of "they" who demand this and that.
"They" who want crazy, impossible things.
This is nothing less than David Fucking Brooks’ subconscious dropped like a turd on the page: a dusky, doomed bone-yard of hollow paragraphs and decomposing punctuation, though which he is hauling ass as quickly as possible, never daring to risk striking match or composing an honest sentence for fear of throwing around enough light to recognize that the monsters shambling along just out of view and shadowing his every step are all wearing his face.
Bobo full-well knows that the gridlock which sickens him did not just fall from the sky. Nor was the stagnation and stasis conjured by some amorphous group of “we”s or “they”s. No, sabotaging the ability of the United States to govern itself has been the central project of David Fucking Brooks’s Conservative Movement for David Fucking Brooks’ entire adult life.
A fact which he rather conspicuously fails to mention.
Bobo full-well knows that it is he and his fellow Reaganite travelers who are responsible for smashing the American public square, bunker-busting its rubble and then pissing on its ashes. And now, from Iraq to Wall Street and from a mountain of debt to a Gulf full of oil -- in this tragic, imploding world he and his fellow Reaganite travelers spent thirty years carefully crafting-- the skies are growing positively black from horizon to Deepwater Horizon with the flocks of Conservative chickens that are coming home to roost.
This, then, is the opulent Hell that professionally beige apologists for the ruling class like Brooks have built for themselves: an increasingly terrifying jungle populated by pundits who simultaneously have no discernible skills, and who desperately want to hang onto their ridiculously well-paid sinecures as Conservative Public Intellectuals without having to get their cravats soiled rolling in the pig-shit with the likes of Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh and the other, real leaders of the Conservative Movement.
And I call it a Hell, because as a writer I can only barely imagine the horror of living a life where having a permanent Op-Ed column in America's newspaper of record was not something about which I could be proud, but something I was trying desperately to white-knuckle and bullshit my way through; something ugly and shameful, to be gotten away with week after week as my lies and failures closed in around me.
The world that he made is fast becoming a place through which Bobo cannot walk like a man, but must slip like ghost, not daring to touch anything solid or true for fear it will be his undoing.
A place where David Brooks the Writer is condemned to never, ever whisper the truth, not even to himself.
A place where, every single fucking day, one more pillar of the Movement behind which he cowers collapses into blood and fiasco, leaving fewer and fewer places for truckling little fucks like Brooks to hide.
mmmmmm, that was so goooood. *lights cigarette*
I don't toss this word around the blogosphere: Brilliant dude.
PF at the end is a great touch.
ARE there any intelligent conservative pundits/columnists?
Does anyone seriously think folks like Brooks feel any kind of shame--or are capable of doing so? Shoot, I would bet good cash flow that the only thing he has on his mind as he weekly belches forth this crap is what international gated community he can flee to escape his sins. (A gated community with a still-clean beach, that is.) Nobody could be this blind without deliberation.
Damn, I had to delete the fantasy going through my head. I am getting as bad as they are.
Grilled taint, a thirty foot hole with that at the bottom and ten years of cat box contents on top.
Well done. I always wonder about the mix of stupid to evil for conservatives. Brooks has always seemed aware enough to be evil. He's fighting a rearguard action to defend his corrupt ideology, and just buying all the time he can. He's a better writer than Jonah Goldberg, and has more prestige, but he's still just a bullshit merchant. Is he self-aware enough to feel shame, or did that part of him die long ago?
David Brooks is a sociopath.
Heck, corporations have sociopathic tendencies;
why not their shills, too?
'Conservative Public Intellectuals'...At last, an oxymoron to stand proudly with 'military intelligence' and 'corporate ethics'.
Merci, M. Driftglass.
> ARE there any intelligent conservative pundits/columnists?
I can't name another.
No, he's not better than Goldberg. He's more acceptable (and I use that term very loosely) and, therefore, more dangerous. You can't have them all acting like Glenn Beck.
Although, there is the school of thought that you can't truly polish a turd... and, admittedly, he's pretty turdy.
BTW, Steve M's post on this Brooks nonsense is worth a look, too.
Thank you, Drifty.
The cognitive dissonance is strong with that tool.
Fucking Brilliant. Again.
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