Monday, January 12, 2015

The Left Hand of Gormless


David Brooks raids a 40-year-old science fiction classic --
Maybe you’re familiar with Ursula Le Guin’s short story, “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas.” It’s about a sweet and peaceful city with lovely parks and delightful music.

The people in the city are genuinely happy. They enjoy their handsome buildings and a “magnificent” farmers’ market.
-- to explain (oh Lord) why his decades of calculating, loathsome, immoral career decisions weren't really that bad after all:
The rest of us live with the trade-offs. The story reminds us of the inner numbing this creates. The people who stay in Omelas aren’t bad; they just find it easier and easier to live with the misery they depend upon. I’ve found that this story rivets people because it confronts them with all the tragic compromises built into modern life — all the children in the basements — and, at the same time, it elicits some desire to struggle against bland acceptance of it all.
I do wish Andrew Rosenthal would keep his diarrhetic mutt the hell outta my backyard.

Also, Mr. Rosenthal, if you want to see this sort of thing done right, here are a few examples
If This Goes On -- 
"Christ, what an imagination I've got!" 
The Day The Icicle Works Closed 
The Hollow Men Who Rule Us


bowtiejack said...

Mr. Rosenthal's father (gee, is there a pattern of nepotism at The Gray Lady?) used to have an editorial page column called "On My Mind".

I have been privileged to know some of the worker bees at the NY Times, where the column was referred to as "Out of My Mind". And if you ever read it, with good reason. Just saying.

Mike Lumish said...

Rule Number One: Every moral degenerate considers himself the hero of “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas.”

Corollary: Every moral degenerate considers himself the hero of “The Second Coming."

Lemma: Every moral degenerate considers himself the hero of ...

Christ on a Pogo Stick, we are a self congratulatory and unreflective people.

dinthebeast said...

I would be somewhat reluctant to throw DFB into a wood chipper (either direction; it would only take a second or two) out of concern that each chip might slither away and grow a new DFB.
I know it's a long shot, but in an abundance of caution I suggest he be buggered to death by a sheep. Or even better, by one of those ducks with the huge, corkscrew penises. Just imagine his Wikipedia page afterward:
David (fucking) Brooks, who was fatally sodomized by a duck, used to spew his centrist twaddle on the pages of the New York Times, claiming that both sides were equally to blame for his rise from wingnut carnival barker to inexplicably respected columnist.

Doug in Oakland