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Thurber questioned "Die like a dog," proposing "Die like a duck" instead.
As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods; They kill us for their sport.
"dropping like flies" is racist for obvious reason.
The simile dropping like flies reminds me of the idiom read the riot act.WV: moddig
Obama LIED, and now Democrats are dropping like flies.
ABC is now a Republican mouthpiece????
Obama LIED, and now Democrats are dropping like flies.Not really. They're just perched on manure like usual.
Obama LIED, and now Democrats are dropping like flies.If you say so.
Incumbents are dropping like flies, if you read the linked-to article. (smile)
What we really need are some of those sticky fly strips that hang down from the ceiling. That way we can just dispose of a bunch of them all at one time.
"Dropping like flies" is not racist. it is speciesist.
I'd love to know what's been said to Dodd in particular to get him to bow out. Frankly, vulnerable democrats getting out of the way early is bad for the GOP. Kicking Dodd's ass, for instance, in that particular race would have been a cakewalk. Now they have to deal with one of the most popular democratic politicians in CT...one who has already stated a desire to run for a senate office.
The issue is not how many retirements, but how many incumbents disliked.Right now, it looks like the Demos are out in front.
I wonder if Dodd will retire to his Irish cottage?
Dropping like this only not as tidy or well mannered.
It's not about the “who” or the (R/D) - It's about “why” and the strategy.The democrats are dropping out because they are behind in the polling.Cynically, the democrats are strategizing to keep the seat. Generally, I think, Republicans get out and move on because that was their plan anyway... Not to stay in politics forever.Some actually respect the founder's philosophy of representative government that periodically changes hands. The whole Senator-for-life crap, is just that- CRAP.(yes - both parties partake in the "for-life" deal.)
Oh please. This is normal off-year election stuff, that is being catastrophized by the media. They need to talk about something, until the next bomber, fire, disaster, or divorce comes along.
As similes go, "dropping like flies" is a cliche that never made much sense. Do folks at ABC studios (in NYC, LA or similar elsewheres) or even in Madison, see flies dropping out of the air with some regularity? My experience of flies is that they don't drop at all, but instead buzz around annoyingly and then fly away. They're quite good at surviving attempts to swat them down. The phrase might have captured an aspect of daily life when folks stepped out their back doors into a barnyard or some such place -- but I'm just guessing, never having lived anywhere near one.
My experience of flies is that they don't drop at all, but instead buzz around annoyingly and then fly away. They're quite good at surviving attempts to swat them down. That is because you are trying to swat them down. When I have a problem with flies, I use this poison spray -- Home Defender, I think it's called -- that can shoot out a strong jet of insect poison. It knocks the flies right out of the air, just from the physical impact. I have never successfully swatted a fly with a newspaper, but with this spray, they really do just drop out of the air.
If you very slowly bring your hand down to the fly, they set their wings and freeze, for some reason, and you can easily smash them. Works every time.
As similes go, "dropping like flies" is a cliche that never made much sense. Do folks at ABC studios (in NYC, LA or similar elsewheres) or even in Madison, see flies dropping out of the air with some regularity? My experience of flies is that they don't drop at all, but instead buzz around annoyingly and then fly awayActually, they do drop or suddenly die all at once. When the weather changes from warm to cold or cooler in a sudden snap, the flies will gather on the south facing wall of our workshop and cling to stay warm and eventually just drop to the ground or do the same inside in the window sills. This gross phenomenon usually, and thankfully, only lasts for a few days in the fall.More about flies than you wanted to know. I'm sure.
Are Democrats "dropping like flies"? Oh no, not another Democrats drop their flys joke. That's so 1990s. Just look at the data: Republicans are more likely to drop their flies, downward.I wonder if their labellum and pseudotrachea are almost as big as their aedeagi.
Maybe he'd prefer, "dropping like feces"?Works for me.
I believe what he meant to say was that 'Democrats are like fly droppings'.
Thinking of the health care bill: on full disclosure, Democrats are zipping like flies.
Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
Attention, please. Your friendly reference librarian wishes to impart knowledge of this phrase to you:Dropping like fliesMeaningFalling down ill or dead in large numbers.OriginThe origin of this phrase isn't known. It is clearly a simple allusion to the transitory and fragile nature of an insect's life. It is known from around the turn of the 20th century. The earliest printed version I have found is in The Atlanta Constitution newspaper, May 1902: "I saw men and women rushing back and forth within the flames. They would run along, then came the choking smoke and they would drop like dead flies."In the early 19th century the Brothers Grimm's published 'The Brave Little Tailor', which is a cautionary fable of a child who easily and thoughtlessly kills numerous flies. It seems that they chose flies as being synonymous with something even a child could kill with little effort. The phrase doesn't appear in that text. If there's any knowledge to be gained from this entry, it's this:"[T]the transitory and fragile nature of an insect's life".Cheers,Victoria
Scott wins the thread. Any Groucho Marx quote wins any thread.
Let's see.Dodd, who should and could be defeated, retires.Dodd replaced as Democratic candidate by Blumenthal, the Spitzer look-alike/clone, who will likely be elected.This is not progress for Republicans.
Ask your pollster if retirement is right for you...
I think DBQ's got the right etymology of the term "dropping like flies". You won't see it in a heated environment, but in a building like a workshop that is only heated as necessary, flies start staggering and dropping when the temperature gets too low. If there's an entomologist around here, perhaps they might know what that temperature is.
This is not progress for Republicans.Whenever a crook in power bites the dust, it's a good day for America. And AMERICA is what Republicans care about.Cheers,Victoria
Hey does this mean Bill Clinton would be a Spanish Fly?
Sic transit Peoria.
Obama is the last gasp of the Woodstock generation.His one credible legislative feat: he legalized marijuana.
As the article says: "exactly the meme Republicans want the media to embrace."And what do you know, Althouse takes up the cause!!
If there's any knowledge to be gained from this entry, it's this:"[T]the transitory and fragile nature of an insect's life".Since they are numerous amount and variety that is a good thing otherwise we would be their slaves. It is strain enuff that we must contend with 535 congress critters.
Lautreamont"Here is the most expeditious, though not the best, way to kill flies: one crushes them between thumb and forefinger. Most writers who have treated this subject thoroughly have calculated with great plausibility that in a number of cases it is preferable to cut off their heads."
Dropping like flies? Democrats should more be worried about being picked off like flies.Dodd: Jumped, dropped, or was he pushed?
And what do you know, Althouse takes up the cause!!Ahh. The sweet sound of exasperated liberals unable to control the memes.I keep thinking -- would it have been better to stagger the announcements by Dorgan, Ritter and Dodd, or like it happened in the space of a few hours in one night?The conclusion has got to be the "dropping like flies" allusion would've been easy to make either way, and certainly had it been three Republicans, every liberal journalist and blogger would've been making.
From Insta:“The healthcare bounce was showing no signs of making an appearance. The imminent passage of the behemoth bill is hardening, not easing, the public’s hostility to incumbents.”
"Obama is the last gasp of the Woodstock generation."In spirit, perhaps. But Obama was presumably born in Hawaii on August 4, 1961. The Woodstock Music and Art Fair began on August 18, 1969; and little Barry would have just turned 7.Our president came of age in the 1980s -- the "me" generation. And it shows, doesn't it?
Ahh. The sweet sound of exasperated liberals unable to control the memes.Sounds a lot like flatulence to me.
Our president came of age in the 1980s -- the "me" generation. And it shows, doesn't it?So did I but I learned to despise communists.
My experience of flies is that they don't drop at all, but instead buzz around annoyinglyEliot Spitzer is not dropping, like a fly.
BTW thanks for the props Victoria. :)
Kylos --"If there's an entomologist around here, perhaps they might know what that temperature is."Long about the high thirties is where most insect activity shuts down. I used to raise exotic mantids and the fruit flies to feed them. When I wanted to transfer fruits, I simply put them in the fridge and they were immobilized until they warmed. In the winter, if i had too many, I'd walk outside and open a vial. They would fly in loops for maybe three or four seconds and then drop. An interesting exception are the Grylloblattodae (cricket-roaches) who live on cold terrain and actually won't reproduce if the temp gets even into the fifties. wv: plocksid - an insect that has frozen in mid-flight.
Ahh. The sweet sound of exasperated liberals unable to control the memes.Yep, only 1 Presidency, 40 House seats, and 11 Senate seats to regain control of congress, coupled with dreadful polling on the Republican brand. We're back baby!
"An interesting exception are the Grylloblattodae (cricket-roaches) who live on cold terrain and actually won't reproduce if the temp gets even into the fifties."Norwegians are like that too.@Oligonicella: Thanks for your expertise. Just wondering: Do fruit flies, in fact, like a banana?vw: eshes, i.e. what the famous Dutch graphic artist was after he was cremated.
Scott -- I raised my fruits on a combination of banana mash and yeast. Yes they do.
If there's an entomologist around hereFly comes from German Fliege.
rhhardin -- That's funny on two levels.
Happy New Year, Scott. :)Also, I agree with you that Obama is only peripherally aligned to the Woodstock generation. As an Althouse commenter quoted once, you're not a real Boomer if you can't remember Kennedy being assassinated.But also, I don't think Obama is really a product of the 80s. That's Palin -- molded by Reagan, schooled by Thatcher, shaped by the Cold War, of taking the fight to America's enemies.He's much more tied to the 70s of his mother's generation: to the ERA/NOW movement feminists and to the dying embers of the Yippie movement, which espoused violence in search of peace. His political references were Ayers and Dohrn (and Alinsky). They are cynics who work for American destruction in comfortable yuppie surroundings. The kids of the 60s are coming into their own right now, a little prematurely. I have no doubt that if it had been JFK Jr. going for Hillary Clinton's vacated Senate seat, and not Caroline, that he would've gotten it. He knew how to play the game much better than his sister.Cheers,Victoria
Oli: Thanks. I just had to know!wv: utereen (and I won't go there)
A tureen of uteruses. A KD Lang specialty.
wv: joking! That made me really L.O.L.
Victoria: I was in 2nd grade when Kennedy was assassinated. I came of age toward the end of the 1970s. But I've never found an age I've been comfortable with. When Libertarians are elected in significant numbers to Congress, then that will be the age I will call my own.
Now that Dodd is a confirmed Lame Duck, why isn't he pulling a Palin and just leaving before his term ends?Here in WI, Feingold is up for re-election, but it seems like the stronger (read that as well-known) Republican Candidates are more interested in the Governor's race (and to whomever is elected Gov here I say Good Luck with the Budget).
But I've never found an age I've been comfortable with.My dad, who was born in the early 40s, says the exact same thing, Scott. Too young to remember the war, too developed to dance to Elvis, too old to be a hippie, too liberal to enjoy the conservative greedy 80s. Perhaps only the 90s fit best, because they were all things to all people. Could that apply to you too?(I challenge anyone to come up with a "look" which was universal to all people in the 90s, as longer hair and mini-skirts were to the 60s)Cheers,Victoria
Now that Dodd is a confirmed Lame Duck, why isn't he pulling a Palin and just leaving before his term ends?Because he's not bogged down by lawsuits from his political opponents.Don't worry, though. Dodd isn't resigning. He's reloading.
New AP Headline:"Obama prods Congress to pass health bill quickly"ugh. What a corrupt nightmare.
"Perhaps only the 90s fit best, because they were all things to all people."Yuck. When you're all things to all people, then you're nothing.I like '70s R&B and pop music. The era was also a golden age for American cinema. I even like the clothing. I am the proud owner of two pairs of rare 1970's era English-made platform boots -- one with 6" heels.But the politics of that era sucked; and I learned to revile the left at the University of Minnesota for its sloganeering, groupthink, conformity, and intellectual violence.So, I haven't found my home yet. And I may never.
I like '70s R&B and pop music. The era was also a golden age for American cinema. Earthquake! The Poseidon Adventure! Towering Inferno! Rocky! Not good representatives of any Golden Age.I'll grant you The Sting though.
Yuck. When you're all things to all people, then you're nothing.That's why grunge was so popular. And unlike MadMan, many people would agree with you about American cinema -- an unbelievable golden age for the kind of cinema previously only enjoyed by Weimar Germans or Nouvelle Vague Frenchmen. The cinema of Nashville, McCabe and Mrs. Miller, of Pretty Baby and Taxi, and the best kinds of Godfathers. Wajda was around, and so was Fassbinder.Sure, we remember Spielberg's Jaws or Lucas' Star Wars, and the birth of the weekly blockbuster, but all told, I'd give anything to bring back that innocent sophistication.
@Scott, at least you didn't go to Wisconsin, where the leftist radicals murdered a physics postdoc to express their love of peace and brotherhood.
OT: Will Althouse write a Best of 2009 books blogpost? I need some Kindle book tips from anyone who wishes to give them.
Like flies, more will just take their place until we take away the bait. Term limits either in law or practice, I don't care which and I don't care who, Rs or Ds.
@Big Mike: Does anyone on the left have enough reflective power to realize how much they suck?
When the critters retire or are ousted, will they be subject to the same Obamauncare health package as proposed for the great unwashed, or do they receive a lifetime congressional healthcare plan as well as other 'cash for clunkers' benefit package?
David said... Let's see.Dodd, who should and could be defeated, retires.Dodd replaced as Democratic candidate by Blumenthal, the Spitzer look-alike/clone, who will likely be elected.This is not progress for Republicans.You may be right. The powers that be determined that Dodd was unelectable and asked (or demanded) that he "do a Torecelli".1. Dodd of course will end up with his "prestige" largely undiminished inside the Imperial City and join Big Pharma Billy Tauzin and Federal loophole greaser Daschle as a multimillion dollar a year lobbyist-powerbroker. Dodd will primarily serve those he has served ably while in office - the banking and insurance and Open Borders lobbies.2. Dropping out will allow his replacement to tap Dodd's huge warchest from fatcats.3. Blumenthal, his replacement, is supposedly a popular AG in CT - he inherited the title from Lieberman. I do know that Blumenthal can command huge funds from the trial lawyers as reward for all he has done to enrich them with his various class action lawsuits - like with the tobacco settlement. He also commands ample greenmail ability from the NYC financiers and hedge fund operators that paid huge sums to him each election so he would stay off their back, a la Spitzer. He also commands loyalty from the Israel Lobby, Greenies for all his lawsuits on their behalf, and a number of other state's AGs he aided who have since moved into lobbying, the Senate, or Obama Admin posts.4. Blumenthal, rare for someone like him (very rich family, Harvard Law), is also a Vietnam Vet...which somewhat counters the war record of his most likely challenger..an ex-Congressman and Vietnam Vet/CIA officer named Simmons. His other challenger is likely the wife of a pro wrestling magnate named Linda McMahon. Looks like the Dems now have to be favored to keep that seat.
@CedarfordI agree with your logic in any other election cycle I've ever witnessed. I'm not so sure here.Unlike Perot in '92, there's a significant and muddy factor in the tea partiers, for lack of a better faction name. Largess for the two main parties is at an all time high. In a political environment where the GOP should be cleaning the DNC's collective clocks, they appear somewhat listless and, certainly, leaderless. There's some dark horses there to be sure, but I'm not so sure Steele knows wtf he's doing.My point being that standard political calculus doesn't necessarily apply this cycle. I agree that the DNC may carry CT and said so earlier, but for the Congress in general, who knows how that third faction is going to play out?
Never post while working...That should have read, regarding Perot, that the possible third faction is anything but predictable at this point. Regarding the largess I mentioned, it should have read that it was all but gone.My apologies. Now back to your regularly scheduled blog, already in progress.
Does anyone on the left have enough reflective power to realize how much they suck?There's a vampire joke in there somewhere.
@Scott, after reading David Brooks' column yesterday, I'd say that the answer is negative. I was particularly stunned at paragraphs 4 through 6, which Brooks worded to imply that the main reason we the people are moving away from the ideas he holds near and dear is not that we've looked them over for ourselves but merely a childish reaction to our betters -- what he calls the "educated class." The very title of his column suggests that we're merely acting out the way that high school students react to their much wiser parents.I showed the column to my wife -- the former nuclear scientist -- and she was gobsmacked that not only would someone think that way, but would go so far as to publish it widely.(Thanks to Victoria and other Brits for adding "gobsmacked" to my vocabulary.)
Scott and vb,Barry is a 60s kid by virtue of Mommy, who was born around '43 IIRC. She was a flower child all her life (I think she lived long enough to get her PhD in Basket Weaving or whatever) and transmitted that to The Zero.As for Boomers and JFK, demographers do distinguish between the big Boom (roughly the end of WWII to the end of the Korean War) and a couple of Boomlets (one, I believe, was the late 50s). But I know what you mean.It was a little weird growing up on a block where every kid was in an age range from three years older to three years younger, although there were always enough for both sides of a baseball game.garage mahal said... Yep, only 1 Presidency, 40 House seats, and 11 Senate seats to regain control of congress, coupled with dreadful polling on the Republican brand. We're back baby!Half right, which is closer than usual. RINOs are still unpopular, so a lot of people are going to be looking more carefully than usual. If the Tea Party crowd and the indies find people they like, Congress could look a lot more different than garage, once he comes back from whistling past the graveyard, would like.Politico notes 5 seats, in addition to CT and ND, in trouble for the Demos. Add to that the problems Maatha is having in the People's Republic (even the Lefties don't like her), and you could be looking at a six or seven seat gain. The House is in the same spot.And, yes, garage, that's how the Demos did it - in 2 election cycles.
The DemonRats are desparate to enact their death Panel loaded government health care plan ASAP before the Tea Party voters can come together as a panel to vote a political death to those wild and crazy Senators that attacked their health care system for measly cash bribes.
Once one learns basic statistics and critical thinking, almost everything one reads in the media seems around the level of TMZ. My own view about how the midterms will go is to look at unemployment numbers a month before the elections. Everything else is just people making stuff up for entertainment and profit.
Politico notes 5 seats, in addition to CT and ND, in trouble for the Demos. Add to that the problems Maatha is having in the People's Republic (even the Lefties don't like her), and you could be looking at a six or seven seat gain. The House is in the same spot.Did Politico list the Reps in trouble? I bet it never occurred to them. Politico has been banging the Republican "comeback" for 3 yrs now, except it hasn't show up anywhere.
Fact is GOP is even MORE in trouble for 2010. The Dem majority if 100% safe.
re: Brooks and the Educated Class.It may be part of the whole that somefeller was on about the other day, that the entire explanation was mass hysteria in the form of inferiority complexes proven (proven!) by the fact that people don't think that anyone is better than they are and refuse to defer. That one could not be a Tea Partier without an inferiority complex. That one could not possibly support Palin unless one had an inferiority complex.Instapundit linked to some advice to Democrats facing tough races, to start now portraying their Republican opposition as the Tea or Sarah Palin party in order to marginalize them. Glenn pointed out that the Tea Party and Palin are polling higher than Republicans are.It seems like the push to marginalize and dismiss the Tea Party by convincing everyone they are irrelevant has worked to convince people who oppose the Tea Party to believe they are irrelevant.Brooks, bless his heart, doesn't insist they are racist, just reflexively against anything promoted by the Educated Class.Which means that the Tea Party, bless their hearts, or anyone else so annoyingly contrary, doesn't care what the Educated Class thinks of the relevance of the Tea Party.(And frankly, picking the opposite of whatever the Educated Class proposes seems like a better than random chance of coming up with the right answer.)
"Fact is GOP is even MORE in trouble for 2010. The Dem majority if 100% safe."Likely true. The Republicans need more spankings.It's Tea Party economic philosophy... better to hurt now and get it over with than continue to do what got us in trouble in the first place, only more, and expect different results.
i ll have you know i resentthe tenor of this conversationflies are awful it s truebut all this talk of killing insectsis just terrible terribleand anyway democrats are notlike flies they're like ants or atleast they want you to live likeants it takes an anthill you knowrepublicans are the ones like fliesreal individualistsand generally full of shit
"Are Democrats "dropping like flies"?"No, they're getting teabagged.
"It was a little weird growing up on a block where every kid was in an age range from three years older to three years younger, although there were always enough for both sides of a baseball game."Edutcher, I loved your observation! Can't wait to pass this along to one of my old friends from the neighborhood.
Sadly, I've become so jaded about our legislators that when I see they are leaving their political thrones, I assume they are doing so before some wrongdoing is uncovered.
Vicky and Scott, I still place BO with the 60s crowd even though he was a kid. His mom was so 60s, and he got the baton. I'm with Edutcher on this.The Weather Underground was born in the late 60s, even if they didn't do most of their damage until the early 70s.The main thought is that America is an imperialistic nation that must be brought to its knees by any means necessary. Marijuana, rampant sex, taking over the economy, devastating the banking system, a thousand Mogdishus, all in the name of world peace.One can even use religion, as long as it enables the 60s mentality, instead of barring it, or laying it bare. The 60s were essentially an all-out assault on Calvinism: the work ethic, the marriage ethic, the notion of honesty, all of it would be replaced by pagan Marxism in which marijuana was the new national flower.Obama inhaled deeply, and has held it for decades.
garage mahal said... Politico notes 5 seats, in addition to CT and ND, in trouble for the Demos. Add to that the problems Maatha is having in the People's Republic (even the Lefties don't like her), and you could be looking at a six or seven seat gain. The House is in the same spot. Did Politico list the Reps in trouble? I bet it never occurred to them. Politico has been banging the Republican "comeback" for 3 yrs now, except it hasn't show up anywhere.The big story (journalistically, speaking) is about how the Demos are about to blow their super-majorities through their own corruption and greed. Undoubtedly, there are RINOs in trouble, also, but, except for a few Senate seats, they've been pretty much vetted. The point I was trying to make, which you seem to be striving to avoid (surprise!), is that the Tea Partiers and indies will play a big part in the Republican primaries, ergo, the Republican Party may be about to undergo a big metamorphosis.PS Politico was in the tank for Barry for 2 years. Talking about a Republican comeback was often another way to rub salt in the wound. I know being part of the echo chamber can be unnerving, but the law of political averages kicks in for everybody, the irony here is that the Demos are being hoist on their own petard in the most literal fashion.Alex said... Fact is GOP is even MORE in trouble for 2010. The Dem majority if 100% safe.You seem to be the only one who thinks so.
Sadly, I've become so jaded about our legislators that when I see they are leaving their political thrones, I assume they are doing so before some wrongdoing is uncovered.I don't think there's much cover on Dodd's wrongdoing even now. That's why he would have been defeated had he run for another term.
Fact is GOP is even MORE in trouble for 2010. The Dem majority if 100% safe.I'm guessing the Dems will certainly lose their razor-thin supermajority in the Senate, but hold on to a majority. Only a third of the seats come up in any given election.In the house it's gonna be close, but if they don't find a politically palatable way to strangle Obamacare they'll lose their majority.
Don't be fooled, the flies are just a distraction. They're hovering around the dog pile that's just been deposited on the lawn. The Dems are your neighbor who's high-tailing it out of there before you spot it and expect him to clean it up.
Nahhh. they are all hovering around the dung pile that is the republican party....ya'betcha
How wonderful, as if these imagined, foregone elections will be held tomorrow. Because that's the only way we'll stop this country from going down the socialist toilet. By November next, and next, we'll be a nation of dwindling hosts dying from voracious parasites - and retired politicians imbibing at Dodd's Irish cottage.
@Kirby OlsonI still place BO with the 60s crowd even though he was a kid. His mom was so 60s, and he got the baton.Doesn't hurt that he was in Indonesia from '67 to '71. He missed all of that post Summer of Love nastiness. Not hard to see how he could be bitterly clinging to his mama's love beads and hash pipe.
Well hey, the Thurber quote ("Die like a duck") in turn me me think (as a completely unrelated tangent) of "The Duck of Death", so now I'm laughing too.
Big Mike wrote:I showed the column to my wife -- the former nuclear scientist -- and she was gobsmacked that not only would someone think that way, but would go so far as to publish it widely.I have been mulling this attitude over since around the time Palin came on the national landscape.Of course, it was present and visible for a long time before that -- the need to marginalise the white working classes as that oafish, bullheaded, woefully CONSERVATIVE strata of society which refuses to accept liberal betterment even for their own good, an attitude that has been around in America since Jane Addams set up shop in Hull House (1889). David Brooks is the inheritor of the Whiggish Victorian desire to improve what he sees is wrong around him, through political means. But contrary to modern-day belief, it's not tied to politics, as can be seen by his self-professed conservatism. It has always been tied to higher education. Teddy Roosevelt had the same impulse on showing up at journalist Jacob Riis' office in NYC after having seen the photographs of the urban poor in Riis' "How the Other Half Lives", by laying down his top hat on his desk and saying simply, "I am here to help".You see, that's what educated people do. They HELP. Those who do not actively help are a hindrance to the betterment of society and consequently, must be ridicularised as stupid (read, uneducated).Unfortunately, since the time of Lewis Hines, Riis and Addams, society has grown and changed. I am not sure the Brooksian disdain has much to do with class. It's to do with shared paths.What do I, David Brooks, Barack Obama, Ann Althouse, and a slew of her commenters on this blog have in common? We're all highly educated people, with diplomas from old universities to prove it.So how come we don't all have the same impulse to look down on people who are not brimming with these hallowed pieces of parchment?Because education, for me at least, has very little to do with common sense and certainly not anything to do with ideology. And you can't be in David Brooks' team if you have too much of the first, and too little of the latter.When Barack Obama won, it was a colassal win for the educated classes, and no one else need apply thankyouverymuch.Cheers,Victoria
One other thing, Big Mike. Your wife is seeing something I am too -- perhaps this is what President Obama meant by transparency: Mary Landrieu flat out BOASTING that she had been bribed with 300 million dollars of goodies for her vote, and Brooks ripping the veil off and revealing himself to be a flat out intellectual snob with utter contempt for those less educated, regardless of politics.The Vanguard Party dreamt up by Lenin, filled with leaders who tell others how they must live their lives because they are the chosen few who "get it", is not too far away from David Brooks ideological need for smarties to rule the dumbies of society. Woe is he finding out no matter how powerful his side gets, that the "dumbies" still outnumber them.
Ah, I see our resident exoskeletonist has weighed in. My friend, let me apolize on behalf of my fellow-humans here for all the rankly speciest talk in this this thread.
Colossal. Arrgh. Sorry, but I hate my typos.
Victoria - just because David Brooks writes a snarky articles doesn't mean he has any real influence. It's just that we're all political junkies and we KNOW about it. Believe me, 98% of the people have never even heard of this guy. More people get their political commentary from Jon Stewart then they would ever get from NY Times or blogs.
Kirby O wrote:The Weather Underground was born in the late 60s, even if they didn't do most of their damage until the early 70s.I don't disagree with that, but I believe he's much more ideologically in tune to the violence of the Panthers in the 70s, to the movement feminists who were still students in the 60s, but started reaching powerful positions in the 70s, to the Weather Underground who as you say, came into its own in the 70s too.In short, what the 60s birthed, the 70s matured. You can see that in his mother, Stanley's, path as "just" an Indonesian housewife in the 60s, but a Ph.D. candidate in the 70s.
PNAC are far more dangerous to this world then 60s hipster liberals could ever be.
Victoria,Your 4:51 comment was wonderfully well said. The image of TR removing his silk hat as he stooped to conquer -- brilliant, evocative, apt. Cheers, JohnU.C. Berkeley '77
Oh look, it's "Fugue State" Alex! The guy who can pretend to be both liberal and conservative about 100 times in a single comment thread and no one seems to notice.
I know being part of the echo chamber can be unnerving, but the law of political averages kicks in for everybody, the irony here is that the Demos are being hoist on their own petard in the most literal fashion.Count me as one of those who thinks today is a very good day for the Democrats, who seem to be getting the message of the tea-party movement better than the Republicans. If this trend continues, the Dems can offer lots of new faces to the electorate, folks who are not freighted with the Dodd baggage. These new faces can claim that they are the change agents. The reasons they will be able to do this are:a) the tea party movement is populist more than ideological. There are pieces of it that Dems can embrace if they get over their obsession with seeing the movement as crypto-racism. Obviously, it will take several leaps for them to get there, but they are closer to it than the Republicans because...b) The GOP seems to think it can offer the voters the same team that got tossed out in '06-'08, and that the tea party movement represents a desire to give power back to John Boehner, Mitch McConnell and Dick Cheney. This is crazy, but it looks like that's their strategy. The trajectory of 2010 just changed.
"The trajectory of 2010 just changed."Back to the Democrats? You must be joking.Of course you were fooled by Barack Obama, "the change agent", but why do you think that everyone else will be so gullible after the colossal screw-up of 2008?People are not going to keep settling for one or the other brand of the same corrupt, bankrupt mediocrity offered by the two parties in our system. There will be a breaking point. And hopefully out of the wreckage will come a phoenix, not another undead donkey or elephant.
The image of TR removing his silk hat as he stooped to conquer -- brilliant, evocative, apt. Thanks so much, John. :)I confess, that image of TR has haunted me since I heard of the incident in a PBS documentary. As you say, one can almost visualise the simple, yet dramatic removal of the shiny topper by a flawlessly starched white gloved hand, revealing a head of thinning reddish-brown hair by a man who knew about personal pain, but never had fear of want, hunger or filth. It is a gesture elegant, but humble all at once. Perhaps Brooks and his ilk see themselves like that. Not aristocratic, to be sure, but noble and fine just the same.When Brooks spoke of the sharply creased trouser leg of Barack Obama, it was Teddy's silk topper that he had in mind. That undeniable panache of the crusading classes.Cheers,Victoria
no one seems to notice.It's like a train wreck, Palladian. Some rubberneck, some don't, but most don't say much about the tragedy before us.
"It's like a train wreck, Palladian. Some rubberneck, some don't, but most don't say much about the tragedy before us."We're past the tragedy and well into the farce.
Interesting analysis, Victoria, but here's where things get a little dicey for Brooks and his "educated class." The problem for Brooks is that when he says "educated" he means "educated in an Ivy League university" (they'll sometimes condescend to accept Northwestern, Wisconsin, Berkeley, and a few of the better sort of small liberal arts colleges), where they've been "educated" to believe that if reality disagrees with the latest consensus theory then what's wrong is the perception of reality, not the theory and not the "educated" consensus.But reality happens to be real, whether he and the (allegedly) "educated" accept it or not.One of the things that Brooks and his "educated" classes can't bring themselves to do is to question their assumptions, and to wonder how their ideas can go wrong. If he designed computer systems for a living, as I do, his designs would probably turn out to be worthless becuase one has to do both -- ruthlessly question assumptions and continuously ask how things can go wrong -- or the system simply won't work.I'll sign off with two thoughts:(1) George W. Bush had two Ivy League degrees -- from Yale and Harvard, no less. The Harvard degree was an MBA, and a Harvard MBA degree carries a great deal of cachet.(2) If you want to get really rich buy an Ivy Leaguer for what he's really worth, and sell him for what he thinks he's worth.
PS: WV is "swated," which is just one letter off of being very appropriate for this post
It's like a train wreck, Palladian. Some rubberneck, some don't, but most don't say much about the tragedy before us.Prove it. There is no tragedy except in individual circumstances.
John Stodder said... I know being part of the echo chamber can be unnerving, but the law of political averages kicks in for everybody, the irony here is that the Demos are being hoist on their own petard in the most literal fashion. Count me as one of those who thinks today is a very good day for the Democrats, who seem to be getting the message of the tea-party movement better than the Republicans. If this trend continues, the Dems can offer lots of new faces to the electorate, folks who are not freighted with the Dodd baggage. These new faces can claim that they are the change agents.Don't hold your breath on any of that. People will be looking a lot more closely at candidates and Republicans will be vetted a lot more carefully with the country having gone for Barry's Hopenchange fantasy. As I've said, there's a lot of whistling past the graveyard by the Lefties today.In the case of the Nutmeg State, Blumenthal may be "popular" simply because not that many people in Connect-The-Dots really know him. There's an interview with Glenn Beck where he comes off as a mindless, big government slug (I know, distinction without difference). Count on that interview getting a lot of play.
Oh look, it's "Fugue State" Alex! The guy who can pretend to be both liberal and conservative about 100 times in a single comment thread and no one seems to notice.I thought it was two different people posting under the same name.
Back to the Democrats? You must be joking.As of today, yes. It could change. Big difference between my being taken in by Obama as a candidate--which reflected my weariness of the GOP regime, my hope for something better, and my misplaced faith that his enthusiasts were privy to knowledge about qualities that would make him a good president--and my speculation about the significance of all the Democratic retirements. This isn't causing me to wish Harry Reid well. But it's my analysis that the Democrats who are pushing these candidates under the bus are being shrewd, while the Republicans, who just think power is going to fall back into their laps because Obama/Pelosi/Reid have been so awful, aren't doing much of anything that would answer the charge that electing them in 2010 would just re-empower their old crowd. I know a lot of you think I'm a right-wing Republican because I get into more pissing matches with the Democratic cheerleaders on this site, but in fact I'm not. I have no loyalty to the Republican party whatsoever. I've never been one. It seems like a lot of mediocrities rise to the top of that organization. The GOP position on a range of issues is absolutely asinine. They happen to be aligned with me on a few very important issues, but I have no faith that when push comes to shove, they would stick to their alleged principles on anything. So, in my analysis, if a fresh-faced, unburdened Democrat who can credibly distance him or herself from the pork-barrel leadership is pitted against a Tom Delay clone singing the old GOP tune, the Dem will win. Now, it's true, that hypothetical Dem might be a big fat liar, but how do you prove it? Dodd and other old-timers can't change their records, but a candidate without a record can paint himself any color he or she wants. The Republicans are going to have to work a lot harder to effect the big change everyone is forecasting for them. That's my point. And the current leadership doesn't seem particularly imaginative or intelligent enough to know what to do if the stars aren't all aligned in their favor.
George W. Bush had two Ivy League degrees -- from Yale and Harvard, no less. The Harvard degree was an MBA, and a Harvard MBA degree carries a great deal of cachet.Good post, BM. I agree he and others are thinking Ivy League when they speak in shorthand of "educated classes". It puts me to mind of the owner of a blog who was being slagged off by former commenters. Now I don't like this guy anymore, but I found the criticism of him as being "merely the graduate of East Jacksonville University" (or whatever) to be strange, and elitist. How come that never impeded them from commenting at his site before? Suddenly they have to bring it up now when he's turned political coats?One has to be very wary, regardless of one's politics, not to fall into the Brooksian trap of pining for "the educated classes".The whole Bush thing, well, it's strange. I have thought and thought and thought about this -- Palin isn't so very different from Bush politically (though she's closer to Reagan). Now, both Brooks and people like Andrew Sullivan at one point LOVED GW Bush, but they cannot stand Sarah Palin.Could the reason be, apart from shifting perspectives (and mental deterioration in Sully's case) that Bush quite frankly belongs to the "educated classes" on paper, and Palin does not? I mean, is the answer that stunningly simple?Cheers,Victoria
It's true the country has rejected the GOP tired, old ideas. If you can call those even ideas! Take from the poor and give to the rich, that's a real winner in 2010!
There's an interview with Glenn Beck where he comes off as a mindless, big government slug Please, the man has fascist tendencies. This should come as no surprise to anyone who has listened to him.Hey, did anyone catch the Tuesday episode of "The Good Wife"? The subject was a Fox News-a-like Glenn Beck-a-like conservative talk show host on the dock for spreading lies and libels.I was actually cheering on the libs to win.
Could the reason be, apart from shifting perspectives (and mental deterioration in Sully's case) that Bush quite frankly belongs to the "educated classes" on paper, and Palin does not? I mean, is the answer that stunningly simple?That's one reason. Two others are:--The fact that W's father was president.--The fact that he ran as a genteel conservative centrist. As he became more like Palin in office, more conservative, more "country," more loudly patriotic, a lot of elite types who had figured he wouldn't be any worse than his father realized they'd made a big mistake, or been had.Actually, the parallel between Bush and Obama is striking. Both basically ran bait and switch campaigns. It was said repeatedly about Obama in '08 and Bush in '00 that they were centrists with bipartisan leanings. In both cases, a portion of the electorate will never forgive them for that core dishonesty.
In both cases, a portion of the electorate will never forgive them for that core dishonesty.Would Dubya have been a centrist, if there had been no 9/11? I think so, as can be evidenced by the ridiculous big government measures of "No Child left behind" and the Medicare prescriptions thingie. And how can one forget his (and Rove's) idea of being soft on illegal immigration? And TARP, etc etc. I can only imagine what would've happened domestically, had the two fronted wars not interrupted his plans.Bush WAS more of a centrist than Reagan, but since to liberals the worst failing a Republican can have is to be defensive of the United States, and not a globalist like Clinton or Obama, that damned him forever in their eyes.Obama is an amateur. He can't get things passed that were a slam dunk for a president like LBJ. That doesn't mean he's not a stark raving progressive inside, IMHO.And I totally agree that Bush being the son of a president meant a lot to these people.
"I thought it was two different people posting under the same name."I did too for a while but it's not. He actually bragged about trolling at one point. What he does is classical trolling, by the way, posting intentionally disruptive, disingenuous comments in an attempt to damage legitimate conversation. The term has unfortunately been used too loosely against people who are simply annoying or have different political ideas from the general community.I periodically mention this troll to warn the infrequent or new commenter who may actually mistake "Alex" for a commenter in good faith.But as I'm not supposed to comment about trolls, I'll shut up.
Palladian - it's for more interesting to be disruptive, a virtual needle in the eye then spewing the same talking points over and over again. My mission statement - NEVER BE BORING!
Some of us manage to never be boring and yet honest and forthright at the same time. You might try that, because your current duplicity is as boring as a tax seminar.
I went to elite universities (including the same one as the Messrs. Bush), but for all the wrong majors and reasons so I suppose I don't get to be one of the educated elites. Maybe the "real" educated elites can tell that I was born to a single mother who was a factory worker and that I spent several of my formative years living in a mobile home. Of course President Barry Sotero had a similar biography, but he had the advantages of being sort-of-black and the ability to pretend he was competent by doing nothing specific or notable.I got where I got through being good at what I do and I made a lot of noise and enemies and mistakes along the way. Barry knew the game and wanted to play. I saw right through the game and refused to play. That's a big no-no in the entitled educated elite world.
I went to elite universities (including the same one as the Messrs. Bush), but for all the wrong majors and reasons so I suppose I don't get to be one of the educated elites.Nonsense. Yes you do. If ever you need to be invited on a panel or a talk show to comment on any topic, no one will be asking you if you grew up in an unheated trailer with women around on wash day with chapped-red hands. All they need to hear is "Yale", and you're their guy.That's probably what they like about Ivy League credentials. It makes everyone uniformly acceptable.
Ugh, I won't link, but Sullivan today commented on Rahm Emanuel's supposed remark of being sick of the Israelis and Palestinians.He said this of Israel:I'm sick of having a great power like the US being dictated to in the conduct of its own foreign policy by an ally that provides almost no real benefit to the US, and more and more costs.That, my friends, is the particular logic and phrasing of anti-semites everywhere. WE ARE SICK OF THE JOOS TELLING US WHAT TO DO.Ugh, please tell me this man was never a conservative.
Not to defame your mother country, Victoria, but isn't casual antisemitism the norm among the "educated elites" of dear old Blighty?
Ugh, please tell me this man was never a conservative.Andrew Sullivan was never a conservative. He was just a front-runner, and remains so. He's desperately afraid of being alone. When it appeared after 9/11 that the neocons would lead us to glory, he was a neocon. When, a year or so later, the cool kids had turned on the neocons, Sullivan disowned them and began his campaign of vituperation against them. When the even cooler kids started talking about this magic fellow Obama, he swooned over him. I suspect if Obama's loss of popularity is permanent, Sullivan will be looking for the exits. He's already made a few feints in that direction from what I can tell. Wherever he can feel like a part of the crowd.
Good job Palladian, take your football home so no one can play. Can't you also pretend you are competent?Somebody call the Whaaaaambulance.
" Good job Palladian, take your football home so no one can play. Can't you also pretend you are competent? Somebody call the Whaaaaambulance."Where did you go to college, honey?Jesus, you can't even make up your own insults. How long has that stupid "whaaa-mbulance" line been around?Why are you attacking me anyway?Oh, I said something bad about President Sotero...Anyway, cough up those college credentials! As an educated elite, I have a right to know if I should deign to speak with you!
Back in from advising old and new clients whose pattern is now a common problem among the upper middle class and the middle class out there. There is no way to make the money to support their standards of living and any Hope is fading fast. Their situations are in most cases requiring a careful planning for a debt work out plan and possible Bankruptcy a year later. These folks are all strong and hard working men and women who have always believed in the American opportunity for success for hard work. Among them the Democrats are being universially blamed for fiddling with the fake Global Warming while the American economy burns and nothing is being planned to put out the deadly fire. If the GOP will wake up from its coma and start preaching conservative based economic recovery plans, like they mean it, and just tell the truth in public no matter how bad it is, then the GOP will not lose a single contested election 10 months from now. That is what has Brooks and his brothers of educated intellectual bent in a sudden panic mode...the soft talking intellectual theory boys are seen as worthless when reality has become the only demanded commodity. This amazing Deep Freeze weather now is a daily reminder to these voters of how many massive lies these intellectual theory boys have stood up for until they see them as irrelevant fools. Just the facts Mam, said Joe Friday.
"Count me as one of those who thinks today is a very good day for the Democrats, who seem to be getting the message of the tea-party movement better than the Republicans."John Stodder, we're in total agreement on this. I live in a blue state, and can't help but notice that at least the LANGUAGE of the dems is increasingly conservative. Do I think they will vote more conservatively? Not really, but at least they are saying what people want to hear. The downside is that this language change may be enough to convince voters that those who use it are mavericks or independents within the party. I think that will suck votes away from any true independent as well as from republicans who would have gotten a vote just because it was time to vote the party in power, out of power.If there is a silver lining in all of this, and I believe that there is, it's that no matter who wins, because of the tea-party people, the nation's dialogue has made a shift toward the right, and toward much more fiscal responsibility.That's a BIG deal!
Whether or not Dodd and other Congressional Dems run again in the fall, they will still be in place long enough to try to pass Universal Voter Registration this spring. Considering the impact of questionable registrations on the outcomes of some '08 elections, I'm wondering just how much it will matter who runs where.
Not to defame your mother country, Victoria, but isn't casual antisemitism the norm among the "educated elites" of dear old Blighty?Can I hide behind the opinion that "it's complicated", Palladian?You are right, of course. It's especially true of the Foreign Office types, who seem to suffer from overly romanticised visions of Arabs (perhaps bred into them at public school by having to memorise Scheherazade's stories) as opposed to the "pushy" Jews they know like the socially ambitious Rothschilds or the less fortunate ones in the East End. I don't know if I'm making the "familiarity breeds contempt" argument, but if I am, I feel ashamed of having to phrase it that way. That's not the angle I'm aiming for.But the fact is, the British are splendidly bigoted towards EVERYONE. It's different from outright prejudice, because it's layered, contradictory, and often subject to reversal in one generation.But the anti-semitism does remind me of the god-given birthright of every Briton to dislike America and Americans. Some of the most bigoted things I have ever heard of were directed towards you guys -- and reflect a kind of acceptable national hatred, practised from high to low. And yet, and yet, the British are the first to defend American interests, and they not so secretly admire American culture, accents, spunk, lack of stuffiness, etc.I suppose what rankles the British about the Jews is the same thing that rankles them about Americans -- the fact that they do not see themselves as losers, that they are perceived to have untold benefits even if they're underprivileged, that they are ubiquitous in society, and achieve most everything they have via their own talent.If there is one thing you need to know about the British is how very jealous they are towards another person's good fortune. It seems UNFAIR, and that's a deadly sin in our culture. (Contrast this to the similar Russian attitude of being resentful of another person's good fortune, though. The British are not resentful. It really is just plain jealousy, which is solved if they get something of their own. The Russians seem to want to PREVENT the others from getting anything)
Wherever he can feel like a part of the crowd.Why is it that Sullivan gives off these fumes of desperation of wanting to be part of the in-crowd, whereas Hitchens (a self-promoter if ever there was one) doesn't?Hitchens, in fact, reminds me a little of Winston Churchill (don't laugh), who was anything but a saint. You know he's a showboater, and opportunist -- but there seems to be a core element deep inside him that is rather splendid.Sullivan lacks that completely.
Of course President Barry Sotero had a similar biography, but he had the advantages of being sort-of-black and the ability to pretend he was competent by doing nothing specific or notable.Dye your skin black, change your name, SSC, and/or everything you need to change your identity to Black Palladian. Give that a go for a few yrs, and get back to us how much farther you made it in life based soley on that built-in Black advantage. Hell, with that built-in Black advantage, with your talents as a white male who's talents can't be noticed just because your white, I would think president of the United States would be the absolute minimum you should shoot for.
Hey? Remember the movie, "Soul Man"?"To achieve his dream of attending Harvard, a pampered white teen poses as a young black man to receive a full scholarship."
Victoria, your 9:28 reminded me of a passage from War and Peace where Tolstoy summarizes the character of various nationalities. Contrast your take on the British and Russians with this passage:The Frenchman is self-confident because he considers himself individually, both as regards mind and body, irresistibly captivating to either men or women. The Englishman is self-confident through his absolute conviction that he is a citizen of the most fortunately constituted kingdom in the world, and because, as an Englishman, he knows always and in all circumstances what it is requisite for him to do, and also knows that all he does as an Englishman is correct beyond cavil. The Italian is self-confident because he is excitable, and easily forgets himself and others. The Russian is self-confident for the precise reason that he knows nothing, and wishes to know nothing, because he believes that it is impossible to know anything. But the German is self-confident in a worse way than all the rest, above and beyond all the rest, because he imagines that he knows the truth, -- the science which he himself invented, but which for him is absolute truth!
LOL, Henry. Very nice! I suppose human beings have sought refuge in the easy and oft-wrong art of deciphering nationalities forever.
While I harbor some faint hope for the electorate, Brooks may be right but only in that a populace so easily fooled as to vote for a socialist=fascist like BHO will quite easily be fooled twice and thrice, whether for for DEM or GOP flavors of statism.
Oh, I said something bad about President SoteroOh, Palladian, are you on the "Sotero" bandwagon? What a letdown. Were you hanging with the Freepers during your absence from Althouse, or perhaps even dallying at World Nut Daily?Well, at least you're an honest to God teabagger. Just jesting - I'd use those damned smiley icons if I knew how, and if I didn't hate them.
no one seems to notice [re "fugue state Alex"Love the description, Palladian!But we do notice - we've stopped reacting. It got boring, is my guess.
How to drop a fly.You rest the side of your hand against the side of a wall, just behind a fly. Sweeping the hand quickly across the wall against the fly, timed with a closing of the hand (but not to a fist), maximizes the chance of capturing a fly in the cavity within your hand.You then throw the fly against the wall. First it bounces. Then it drops.-- Largo: The Childhood Years
rhhardin: As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods; They kill us for their sport.Killing flies is sport only if it involves running, or aerobic endurance, or developing a fine physique. Otherwise it is only a game: like darts -- or Parcheesi. Everybody knows that.
WHOA! Deja Vu!palladian,john stodder,beth, victoria, pogo, rhhardin, madison man, garage, and meade himselfWhat happened!All meaty, pithy and substantial comments from the cream of the Althouse crop. This is undoubtedly the MOST fascinating, intellectually worthwhile thread since . . . well, since a post that included palladian, john stodder, beth, victoria, pogo . . . AND - we get back stories on several of the greats (Harvard? Yale? Berkley?)Folks, grab it and appreciate while you can.WV: arsheAs in, Eliza Dolittle yelling "Move yer bloomin' arshe!"
And did I fail to list:hoosierdbqas part of what is a thread of what may turn out to be nothing short of historic in the annals of Althouse.Seriously. I am totally amazed at the sight of this collection of regulars reemerging here.Completely invigorating!
I swear, if Bruce Hayden, Chip Ahoy Freeman Hunt, and Trooper Yorkshow up here as well, I will take the day off and take the wife out to lunch at Flemings.And if Simon shows up . . .I will mark my calendar and take the wife to the Mission Inn for an overnight celebration.Every year.WOW! What a day!
Just pretending to be competent....sounds as thoughyou have a complicated relationship with "elites"....you must love Sarah P.....oh wait, where did she get her degree?
That was a rather grumpy haiku, master cylinder; it seems composed of random thoughts heard in passing at a Manhattan diner. I hope you left a good tip; the waitstaff are underpaid.Chase, great to hear you again!
Democrats are dropping like teabags into the mouths of warm cups of water.
Or maybe,Democrats are dropping like teabags into the mouths of cups of warm water.Yeah, more better. You betcha!
I always have/give good tips.grumpy indeed.
Good for you. I used to bus tables and wash dishes. Man, I hated those jobs; plus, no tips. Not until I was older did I understand how service jobs like that can be transformative. All I could see was "underpaid at $2.90/hr".20% seems fine. My sister once had an old lady give her a stick of gum as the tip for a lunch of 6 women. 'Here Honey, this is for you. It wasn't meant to be mean, I don't think.I am going to hell for the crap I gave waitresses when I was in high school, though. Upside down uncapped salt shakers alone buys me 1000 years with Bill Maher in the Steam Room, no doubt.
20% seems fine. I'll tip that and some if the service is good. The ones who get a quarter are those that drop off my food and you don't see them again until its time to pay the tab.Hot babes get 30%
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