Tuesday, January 02, 2018

David Brooks Is The Worst Journalist In America

As I noted just yesterday, the toxic cult of Beltway Bothsiderism took such a brutal, non-stop beatdown last year that the Pope of High and Holy Church of Both Sides Do It himself -- Mr. David Brooks of The New York Times --  was reduced to making up staggeringly ridiculous lies (even for David Brooks) about the Obama Administration twice in one week, and hiding behind "woke activists, the angry Sanders socialists and social justice warriors"  just to keep the scam going.

So how did Mr. Brooks ring in the new year?

By wringing his hands over this (emphasis added):
...the radicalization of the Republican Party, and a new form of identity politics, especially on campus.

From an identity politics that emphasized our common humanity, we’ve gone to an identity politics that emphasizes having a common enemy. On campus these days, current events are often depicted as pure power struggles — oppressors acting to preserve their privilege over the virtuous oppressed.

The problem is that tribal common-enemy thinking tears a diverse nation apart.
And this:
This pattern is not just on campus. Look at the negative polarization that marks our politics. Parties, too, are no longer bound together by creeds but by enemies.


As I noted two and a half years ago when Mr. Brooks was beating this very same little tin drum to distract from his Republican Party's ongoing public free-fall into out-and-proud fascism --
There will always be moral fervor on campus. Right now that moral fervor is structured by those who seek the innocent purity of the vulnerable victim. Another and more mature moral fervor would be structured by the classic ideal of the worldly philosopher, by the desire to confront not hide from what you fear, but to engage the complexity of the world, and to know that sometimes the way to wisdom involves hurt feelings, tolerating difference and facing hard truths.
-- that there is something grotesquely hilarious about Mr.  David Brooks -- a powerful, incredibly privileged grown ass white male Republican pundit who lies for a living, who adamantly refuses to speak honestly about his own, well-documented history of being horribly wrong about almost everything and who confines himself to venues where no one would be rude enough to press him with any hard questions about his own sketchy moral decisions and his own ethically bankrupt writing...

...lecturing college students on their moral duty to "not hide from what you fear",  to "[face] hard truth" and to otherwise be the diametric opposite of David Brooks in every way.

On a related note, the newest Sulzberger to helm The Family Business just published his statement of principles.  So if you would like a cheap, dizzying experience like unto being hit upside the head with an empty champagne bottle from 1973, pull any ten David Brooks' New York Times columns at random from the past 14 years, lay them side-by-side with this from A.G. Sulzberger yesterday --
We will continue to give reporters the resources to dig into a single story for months at a time. We will continue to support reporters in every corner of the world as they bear witness to unfolding events, sometimes at great personal risk. We will continue to infuse our journalism with expertise by having lawyers cover law, doctors cover health and veterans cover war. We will continue to search for the most compelling ways to tell stories, from prose to virtual reality to whatever comes next. We will continue to put the fairness and accuracy of everything we publish above all else — and in the inevitable moments we fall short, we will continue to own up to our mistakes, and we’ll strive to do better.
-- and let your eyes flick back and forth between them until your vision goes gray and you pass out from cognitive dissonance. 

Behold, a Tip Jar!


dinthebeast said...

"...otherwise be the diametric opposite of David Brooks in every way."

That is at least good advice.

-Doug in Oakland

Robt said...

One of the oddest phenomenons I have been experiencing.

When meeting someone for the first time. Normally in casual functions. There are many conservatives that have a burning desire to present a first impression (or something).

They are itching and scratching for any inopportune moment in a conversation to announce (declare) there conservatism).

Why is it odd to me?
Because it used to be folks like this would have a burning to announce their religion and faith.
How the public announcement has changed from the more divine than thou to the superior political ideological mindset they now live. When indulging long enough their closer relationship with their God eventually floats to the top of ego flogging.
It is the serving two masters. Well three masters actually because wealthy donors or potential wealthy :friends" is part of their Trinity.

It is just so odd to see this trend in some folks. It is always slathered in self pride.

I imaging it provides a self elevated position the Brooks's of the world shallowly dwell in their mud puddles on the penthouse floor they look down at other from to arrive at their evaluated conclusions of the soiled masses and what is wrong with them.

bt1138 said...

David Brooks is not a journalist.

He is a practiced cultural observer and a moral and spiritual thought leader.

As is well known, there are no rules or standards for thought leaders. They simply share their thoughts and we are to marvel at how wise, moral and thoughtful they are.

Because only a wise, moral and thoughful person would have permanent employment at the Paper of Record, am I right?

Andrew Johnston said...

There's something funny about that piece. Brooks is complaining about "tribalism," that all-purpose lament of the well-heeled squishy centrist longing for those days when they still had friends. But his solution - as it's been since he gave up on his fantasy of the BernieBros becoming paleocons - is to (re)create a traditionalist society that is culturally homogenous and exclusionary of the outside world. In other words, his solution to "tribalism" is to create a much larger tribe - like that great peacemaker Temujin did.

Of course, that's more thought than he put into what is clearly another book report column. I wish I could get paid to skim a book of philosophy and summarize it in three double-spaced pages.

Jim Butts said...

Driftglass I prize myself for my advanced use of English and how to write. Everyday though I see your brilliance here and hang my head in shame. And you do it not once but frequently weekly. And I speak both of the substance and the style of your output. Thank you.

Meremark said...

'Jimmy is our prize pupil. We're giving him away next week.' -- Firesign Theater / Bozos On This Bus, We're All, I think.

Driftglass, may I ditto again what fulsome praise you have been told a thousandfold. That D.Brooks certainly sees your words on him, recognizes the truth you say his guilt is, and is scared to death and tremorous of you.
Keep it up.

As for the new Sulzberger. Patrimonial puff. Expect as some do that he'll wimp out, throw up all his hands, sell out to Murdocalyse, and walk away. Prepper billionaire.

You got that Guilt button on your desktop, too, I read. Flub-er publisher.

trgahan said...

"....we’ll strive to do better."

A goal achievable by January 3rd simply with the dropping the editorial page and firing anyone employed by it.

Because the majority of the NYT editorial page (like most papers) is for conservative subscribers to read calming fairy tales about why that page one story done by a skilled reporter who dug deep for months on end on a given subject is just liberal bullshit designed to complicate simple problems, corrupt morals, confuse the unwashed masses, slander the wealthy, and/or destroy the nation.

John said...

You know, I work at a big honking university. The notion that campus lefties there have any significance is just silly.

The real issue is polarization of wealth. It's turning everything ugly. And people like Brooks have no interest in addressing that issue by, like, taxing the wealthy and improving the social safety net. So instead they invoke culture wars.

Sure, there are a bunch of young, idealistic kids who hate fascism on campus.

But the reality is that the administrations are reliably servile in their support of the rich and their perpetuation of class privilege.

rickstersherpa@msn.com said...

Brooks & the MSM have made possible the Conservative Movement's complete seizure of Government. Trump is simply the embodiment of all the bilge that Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Bii O'Reilly, & there ilk have been pumping into Republican brains these last 30 years.