The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

The Schmuck-tacular Folderol Of Brooks

Posted on | October 18, 2014 | 26 Comments

by Smitty

Via Hot Air headlines, David Brooks continues to terrify rational people with the thought that this twerp is somehow a thought leader in our society:

Low idealism begins with a sturdy and accurate view of human nature. We’re all a bit self-centered, self-interested and inclined to think we are nobler than we are. Montaigne wrote, “If others examined themselves attentively, as I do, they would find themselves, as I do, full of inanity and nonsense. Get rid of it I cannot without getting rid of myself.”

This invites the question of how Brooks got his drivel back in time to afflict Montaigne. Humans are overwhelming the scorpion in the tale of the hapless frog. That so many human frogs like to vote for scorpions can be seen as the passive aggression of Socialism bulldozing everything toward the mean.

Low idealism continues with a realistic view of politics. Politics is slow drilling through hard boards. It is a series of messy compromises. The core functions of government are negative — putting out fires, arresting criminals, settling disputes — and much of what government does is the unromantic work of preventing bad situations from getting worse.

Let’s be clear, Brooks: our homo bureaucratus infestation has metastasized into something worse, starting fires, employing criminals, engendering disputes. When Rahm said “You never let a serious crisis go to waste“, you’re a fool if you don’t think him perfectly capable of fomenting such.

Politicians operate in a recalcitrant medium with incomplete information, bad options and no sleep. Government in good times is merely dull; when it is enthralling, times are usually bad.

Hence the counter-Progressive idea that less government is preferable. Scope creep in the last century of our government has all of the appeal of scope creep in a software project. Except that, while Lois Lerner’s email can vanish in a puff of cyber-smoke, Lois and her ilk will continue to acquire and wield more administrative power until they are stopped. It’s their nature. Like the scorpion.

So low idealism starts with a tone of sympathy. Anybody who works in this realm deserves compassion and gentle regard.

Anybody who actually thinks that is a fool. Government is not parental in nature, and citizens are not children. Despite the efforts of Progress to paralyze our society with pap like your writings, Brooks.

The low idealist knows that rallies with anthems and roaring are just make-believe, but has warm affection for any politician who exhibits neighborliness, courtesy and the ability to listen.

No, Brooks: politicians are not the kindly figures you’re trying to sell here. I’m sure they put on a smile and toss out a Buckley quote for you when they pat you on the head. Nice Bobo, nice. You fling such pleasant poo in your column, Bobo. How is your ObamaCare policy doing, by the way?

The low idealist understands that those who try to rise above the messy business of deal-making often turn into zealots and wind up sinking below it. On the other hand, this kind of idealist has a full heart for those who serve the practical work of legislating: James Baker and Ted Kennedy in the old days; Bob Corker and Ron Wyden today. Believing experience is the best mode of education, he favors the competent old hand to the naïve outsider.

Aren’t you just a well-trained Bobo? That competent old hand feels good when it pats your head, no?
What we need is term limits and more frequent turnover. Ted Kennedy was not a sympathetic character. We need simpler systems that can be readily understood by competent outsiders. As Will Rogers put it:

Politicians are like diapers. They both need changing regularly and for the same reason.

Bobo, your lust for aristocracy is unbecoming an American. But so is pretty much everything you write. We all need to be our own statesmen, to our maximal ability. Govern ourselves, and quit thinking we can offload the need to grow up onto the state. The disastrous results of that surround you.


26 Responses to “The Schmuck-tacular Folderol Of Brooks”

  1. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    October 18th, 2014 @ 9:59 am

    I can’t listen, watch or read David Brooks. He creates a visceral reaction that makes me want to stomp all over him. It is not good for my blood pressure.

  2. Roy Schmalfeldt
    October 18th, 2014 @ 10:01 am

    We’d have better results by filling bureaucratic jobs with a lottery system, limiting the jobs to a short term, a couple of yearsand making it a once in a lifetime proposition, no pension, minimal salary, no perks.

  3. theBuckWheat
    October 18th, 2014 @ 10:44 am

    ““If others examined themselves attentively, as I do, they would find themselves, as I do, full of inanity and nonsense. Get rid of it I cannot without getting rid of myself.”

  4. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    October 18th, 2014 @ 11:17 am

    Either Brooks is a Democrat mole pretending to be a “conservative” or a complete utter sell out (basically a faux-conservative foil like Nicole Wallace is on the View). Either way, there is no reason to trust or listen to him.

  5. Adobe_Walls
    October 18th, 2014 @ 12:36 pm

    It’s the wanting but not doing.

  6. Adobe_Walls
    October 18th, 2014 @ 12:39 pm

    Once again no reason it can’t be both.

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  8. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    October 18th, 2014 @ 2:11 pm

    Given an opportunity, I might take it.

  9. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    October 18th, 2014 @ 2:11 pm

    He is also a f***tard

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  11. DeadMessenger
    October 18th, 2014 @ 3:49 pm

    Yes, take it! You’re a cow, stampede upside his head. He doesn’t use it anyway, and won’t miss it. He may not even notice that you even did it, except for the headache.

  12. DeadMessenger
    October 18th, 2014 @ 3:52 pm

    I’ve said that many times. If your responsibility involves spending other people’s money rather than making it, everyone would be better off with a short-term random bureaucrat than a career one.

  13. DeadMessenger
    October 18th, 2014 @ 4:05 pm

    I wouldn’t even have read this at all, except that I knew I could count on Smitty for some nice Brooks-bashing.

    Then I got to the quote about Ted Kennedy, and my brain exploded (as it does everytime somebody mentions him in a positive light). Now I’ve gotta go wipe the chunks of grey matter off the walls.

  14. Quartermaster
    October 18th, 2014 @ 4:57 pm

    It would be highly therapeutic.

  15. Quartermaster
    October 18th, 2014 @ 4:58 pm

    Such language! Alas, perfectly accurate. He’s Kweer to boot.

  16. Quartermaster
    October 18th, 2014 @ 5:00 pm

    Yes. Quickly, lest your husband ask questions you’d rather not answer.

  17. DeadMessenger
    October 18th, 2014 @ 5:49 pm

    Hahahahaha! This is brain explosion in a bad way, when somebody mentions Ted Kenne….oh, crap, there it goes again.

  18. Bob Belvedere
    October 18th, 2014 @ 6:40 pm

    Once again, Chauncey Gardiner Brooks exhibits his profound ignorance of the philosophy of Edmund Burke.

    He’s not the only one and it makes me so Goddamn angry.

  19. Bob Belvedere
    October 18th, 2014 @ 6:42 pm

    Those of us who are trying to revive Mr. Burke’s way of thinking are not helped at all by this Piece Of Schmuck.

  20. Adobe_Walls
    October 18th, 2014 @ 6:53 pm

    We certainly wouldn’t notice.

  21. Dennis Mahon
    October 18th, 2014 @ 8:20 pm

    Ah, yes…a “brown ketchup” moment…

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    October 18th, 2014 @ 9:48 pm

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  23. Quartermaster
    October 18th, 2014 @ 11:02 pm

    You would still have ‘splainin’ to do.

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  25. William T Quick
    October 19th, 2014 @ 1:50 am

    Brooks has been engaged in selling the rope with which to hang himself for nigh on half a century now. And so overweeningly proud of it!

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