The Light Goes On For Nooner

One of the things that is so irritating about Peggy Noonan is how sometimes she seems extremely perceptive and full of insight and I am very interested in what she has to say, and other times she just seems like the dumbest person in print. I truly do not understand it. At any rate, watching her on MTP this morning, I was stunned to hear this from Noonan as she discussed Sarah Palin’s debate performance:

NOONAN: I, I will tell you, I, I feel increased concern about her, I think, what she thinks of populism, as her populist approach. There are two ways—you know, her stuff about “I’m Main Street, you’re not, you’re the elite. I’m not the East Coast, I’m Joe Six-Pack.” She actually says, “I’m the Joe Six-Pack candidate.” This left me thinking, “Gosh, would Lincoln say, ‘I represent the backwoods types?’ Would FDR say, ‘Yeah, the New York aristocracy deserves another moment in the sun. Vote for me.’” It—there’s something weird about it. But there’s also something, for me, concerning populism as a tactic is justified often in politics. “I need this program, the people want it.” Populism as a strategy, “We’re the good guys, you’re the bad guys,” is not good, and, and if that’s the road they’re going, that’s not a good road to be on. It’s not helpful to the country.

Where has Peggy Noonan been for the past thirty years? For goodness sakes, someone send her a copy of Nixonland. Did she miss the last eight years of “you’re either with us or against us?” Did she miss the the last decade of accusing every Democratic candidate for every office of being either a traitor, treasonous, or a terrorist coddler? Does she have no concept of what it means to sneer at “elitists” and the “ivory towers” and “east and west coast elites?” Has she not noticed as the Republicans and this administration have done everything they could to delegitimize and attack anyone who actually know something. Send her a copy of The Republican War on Science, too. Christ on a crutch, if Noonan thinks Palin is going down the wrong road with her populism schtick, she is going to faint if someone explains why Phillis Schlafley and the rest of the cro-magnon right have been running around sneering at “San Francisco Liberals” for several decades.

In a related vein, I see that many bloggers are linking to this report of a poll of economists, who in general seem to support Obama. I will let Hilzoy give a rundown:

It’s even more striking when you look at some of the internals. The economists rated Obama’s plan to deal with the housing and economic crisis 1.1 points higher than McCain’s, on a five point scale; economists who describe themselves as not affiliated with either party rated it .6 higher. Economists as a whole rated Obama’s tax plan nearly 1.1 points higher than McCain’s; unaffiliated economists rated it nearly .7 points higher. On fiscal discipline, economists as a whole rate Obama a full point higher; unaffiliated economists rate him .55 points higher.

Predictably, Obama dominates on topics like reducing income inequality and reducing the number of people without health insurance. But he also crushes McCain on reforming financial regulations: economists as a whole rank him 1.3 points higher than McCain, while he leads among unaffiliated economists by nearly a full point (and is almost tied with McCain among Republicans.)

I love Hilzoy, but it is almost as if she doesn’t get it either. The Republicans and the McCain campaign and Bible Spice don’t care about this stuff. These are academics. Who can trust them? I doubt many of them can shotgun a six pack while lighting their farts on fire during the NASCAR race. Get back to me when you have some compelling biographical info about an economist gutting a moose while riding a snowmobile.

Then I will know you have a real American we can trust.

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71 replies
  1. 1
    cyntax says:

    Seems to me Peggy Noonan’s inconsistencies are very easy to explain: sometimes she’s truthful.

    It’s not often but when she’s making sense, it’s because that week she just happened to get her intellect back from Republican pawnshop of party dogma where it normally resides. Just compare what she’s written about Palin to what she told Chuck Todd when she didn’t know her mic was on:

    CTodd: Yeah, I mean is she really the most qualified woman they could have turned to?

    PNoonan: The most qualified? No! I think they went for this — excuse me– political bullshit about narratives —
    link

  2. 2
    SGEW says:

    Where has Peggy Noonan been for the past thirty years? For goodness sakes, someone send her a copy of Nixonland.

    Peggy Noonan has been in Nixonland for the last thirty years. Or, in other words:

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."
    -Upton Sinclair

  3. 3
    Polish the Guillotines says:

    I was stunned to hear this from Noonan as she discussed Sarah Palin’s debate performance:

    It’s those doggone rats, dontchaknow, and because, also, the ships are sinkin’, so it’s just jumpin’ right off there, goshdarnit.

  4. 4
    The Moar You Know says:

    Noonan, being the architect of quite a bit of the divide and conquer rhetoric, is not nearly so stupid as you make her out to be, John. She’s simply changing her tune (a little) because the handwriting for her team’s effort this election cycle is on the wall, and she would like very much to be on the side of the winners.

    Peggy hates losers.

  5. 5
    Comrade Jake says:

    I love Hilzoy, but it is almost as if she doesn’t get it either. The Republicans and the McCain campaign and Bible Spice don’t care about this stuff. These are academics. Who can trust them?

    You do have to hand it to the GOP. They’ve managed to convince millions of people that they can’t trust experts, they can’t trust the media, they can only trust the party. It allows them to explain away virtually anything.

    Sarah Palin seems like an idiot you say? Well, it’s only because the left-wing MSM edited her interview. Yeah, that’s it, that’s the ticket!

  6. 6
    Polish the Guillotines says:

    she would like very much to be on the side of the winners

    But most certainly not the Democrats. I think "winners" in this sense means country club vs. country bumpkins. She wants to see the bumpkins go down.

  7. 7
    SGEW says:

    Noonan has now slipped the surly bonds of earth . . . and touched the face of Palin.

  8. 8
    gbear says:

    I think "winners" in this sense means country club vs. country bumpkins. She wants to see the bumpkins go down.

    Apparently some of the ‘bumpkins’ in rural Missouri want to see Sarah go down. They hate her.

  9. 9
    Mike says:

    Get back to me when you have some compelling biographical info about an economist gutting a moose while riding a snowmobile.

    It’s called a snow machine you snob.

  10. 10
    Soylent Green says:

    Get back to me when you have some compelling biographical info about an economist gutting a moose while riding a snowmobile.

    But the Palins display plenty of economic expertise when it comes to using a snowmobiling hobby as a tax dodge. From the AP:

    For the 2007 tax year, Todd Palin’s self-employment brought him $66,893 in gross receipts — $49,893 from fishing and $17,000 from snowmachine racing. But, the returns show, he claimed so many deductions that he reported only $15,513 net profit from the fishing operation and claimed a $9,639 loss from his racing, leaving him with an overall net income of only $5,874.

    The self-employment deductions left the Palins, who have four dependent children, with a 15 percent tax rate for 2007 and a rate of less than 10 percent for 2006. Todd Palin also deducted for the business use of their home in Wasilla. A fifth child was born to the couple this year.

    Todd Palin offset his $17,000 gross receipts for snowmachine racing by claiming $10,858 in depreciation, $2,425 for car and truck expenses and $1,559 for supplies. An additional $11,405 was claimed for "other," which included fuel, entry fees, equipment parts, repairs and maintenance, cell phone, memberships, "sponsorship apprec" and "gear."

    The governor’s husband claimed $34,380 in deductions for his fishing business — more than two-thirds of the gross receipts. He claimed $12,245 in crew share payments, another $2,953 for car and truck expenses, $5,866 for depreciation, $4,181 for supplies.

    But wait, there’s more. Having trouble making ends meet, Americans? Just charge the taxpayers $17,000 a year in per diems for living in your own house.

  11. 11
    slammin' sammy says:

    we’re getting dangerously close to real-life trailer trash candidates at the presidential level. Palin’s daughter is an unwed pregnant teen, and the father of the child is a high school drop-out who boasts on his myspace page that he is "a fuckin’ redneck".

  12. 12
    Polish the Guillotines says:

    The Republican War on Science

    shotgun a six pack while lighting their farts on fire during the NASCAR race

    Well, John, I think you inadvertently stumbled onto a way to reverse the trend: Science for Rednecks. You’ve got fluid dynamics, chemistry, physics…

  13. 13
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    The Drill, Baby, Drill crowd falsely claimed that Katrina had caused no oil platform related environmental effects. Here’s an AP piece about the petroleum-related damage done by the less-powerful Ike.

    WASHINGTON – Hurricane Ike’s winds and massive waves destroyed oil platforms, tossed storage tanks and punctured pipelines. The environmental damage only now is becoming apparent: At least a half million gallons of crude oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico and the marshes, bayous and bays of Louisiana and Texas, according to an analysis of federal data by The Associated Press.

    Drill, Baby, Drill! Lie, Baby, lie!

  14. 14
    Comrade VidaLoca says:

    John,

    One of the things that is so irritating about Peggy Noonan is how sometimes she seems extremely perceptive and full of insight and I am very interested in what she has to say, and other times she just seems like the dumbest person in print. I truly do not understand it.

    Look at it like this: it’s class warfare. Noonan’s on the other side. She’s on the other side every bit as much as, oh, say, the Kristols are. The only difference between Nooner and the Kristols is that Nooner doesn’t practice good message discipline: actually message-wise she’s kind of a ditz. So sometimes shit slips out of her that you wouldn’t see slipping out of other hacks similar to her. That’s what happened this time. It’s interesting only insofar as it sometimes reveals that there is no wizard behind that curtain.

  15. 15
    chrislrob says:

    If the lights gone on, it’s shining on Peggy Noonan’s soul.

    This is all as much her doing as anyone’s. Her candidates, her party, and her heroes have been neck-deep in all of this.

    I saw her this morning, pushing her high-toned book, and I kept waiting for her to take some blame for how we got here.

  16. 16
    Ed Marshall says:

    It’s called a snow machine you snob

    In Illinois it’s a "sled". When an adult says they are going sledding this weekend they are probably going snowmobiling.

  17. 17
    RoonieRoo, dontcha know says:

    Trust me, the bulb will burn out again before Nov. 4th.

  18. 18
    srv says:

    Peggy’s world is where you blame Deep Throat for 3 million dead Cambodians.

    All that carpet bombing, destabalizing Prince Sihinouk, supporting Lon Nol, etc, not so much.

  19. 19
    Brachiator says:

    Where has Peggy Noonan been for the past thirty years? For goodness sakes, someone send her a copy of Nixonland. Did she miss the last eight years of “your either with us or against us?” Did she miss the the last decade of accusing every Democratic candidate for every office of being either a traitor, treasonous, or a terrorist coddler? Does she have no concept of what it means to sneer at “elitists” and the “ivory towers” and “east and west coast elites?”

    It’s as though the GOP has internalized Nixon’s paranoid need to have permanent enemies. And most of all, his ruthless cynicism. After all, it was New York ivory tower type Bill Safire who gave Nixon VP Spiro Agnew the phrase "nattering nabobs of negativism," one of the most famous attack lines against supposed elites.

    But Noonan is also a Wall St Journal conservative. She fears Palin’s faux populism (as she fears the more authentic populism of Mike Huckabee) because it is unpredictable and uncontrollable. McCain double downed when he selected Palin. She is woefully under-prepared to serve as VP (or, heaven help us, as president), but she also appears to be in tune with McCain’s independent, erratic temperament.

    Dubya pretended to be a populist, but he was a dues paying member of the American elite. There are not a lot of Joe Sixpacks in Yale’s Skull and Bones. In the end, Noonan is not concerned that Palin’s populism might prove divisive, but that it might falsely signal that the GOP actually cares about "those people."

  20. 20
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    I saw her this morning, pushing her high-toned book, and I kept waiting for her to take some blame for how we got here.

    You bring up what is to me one of the most amazing aspects of the financial crisis: No named person is responsible and no named person should have prevented or mitigated it.

    It’s as if a giant meteor suddenly struck the economy. "Whoa, didn’t see that one coming!" WTF?

  21. 21
    jenniebee says:

    Her consistency is that she’s never thought much of populism but was willing to use it if it could be used to her advantage. Palin is like the inverse Huckabee – he really means his populism, and she really is the hoi polloi. Peggers can’t exactly say "populism’s all well and good in its place but if Lincoln hadn’t risen above and out of that log cabin he’d have made a lousy president" (I can, but she can’t). The dig at FDR – she’s either saying that he’s a faux populist or a class traitor there, take your pick – is just icing on the cake.

    They’ve been gushing about "authenticity" for years, but it’s always been the J. Peterman kind of authenticity. Palin’s authenticity is a little too real.

  22. 22
    airmail says:

    Heh, Bible Spice. She can rock the flute like is nobody’s business.

  23. 23
    ThymeZone says:

    I think Palin is a brilliant populist move. The problem for McCain is, this is not an election what will move on populism.

    They think it is, but it isn’t. It is moving on competance, on the ability to trust and have confidence in institutions. On calm, rational leadership.

    When McCain lowers his standard to that of Joe Sixpack, he convinces the non Joe Sixpacks that faux populism is what got us into this shit in the first place. Joe Sixpack is a fun character, but he’s outnumbered. He doesn’t move the middle voter this cycle. That’s why the middle is tipping rapidly away from McCain. And Palin is the mover, and if you look at the poll trends in the last month, you can clearly see the effect she has had.

    Palin was a great choice for the Obama-Biden ticket. Best one McCain could have made ….. for us.

  24. 24
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:

    All media is starting to walk it back, finally. This is Peggy’s attempt to do so. McCain thought he had friends in the press but he lost them when he starting dating Sarah Palin.

  25. 25
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:

    Palin was a great choice for the Obama-Biden ticket. Best one McCain could have made ….. for us.

    Yup, and it’s too late to turn the clock back on that decision now. ;)

    Eat it McCain!

  26. 26
    Martin says:

    The Drill, Baby, Drill crowd falsely claimed that Katrina had caused no oil platform related environmental effects

    Oil spills aren’t environmental problems. Oil is all-natural, dontchaknow, put there by God for our economic benefit. It’s like calling snow an environmental problem.

  27. 27
    AkaDad says:

    Obama isn’t like us Joe Sixpacks, who eat mooseburgers and shoot wolves from helicopters, donchaknow.

  28. 28
    srv says:

    Peggy on Bush:

    Mr. Bush is the triumph of the seemingly average American man. He’s normal. He thinks in a sort of common-sense way. He speaks the language of business and sports and politics. You know him. He’s not exotic. But if there’s a fire on the block, he’ll run out and help. He’ll help direct the rig to the right house and count the kids coming out and say, "Where’s Sally?" He’s responsible. He’s not an intellectual. Intellectuals start all the trouble in the world. And then when the fire comes they say, "I warned Joe about that furnace." And, "Does Joe have children?" And "I saw a fire once. It spreads like syrup. No, it spreads like explosive syrup. No, it’s formidable and yet fleeting." When the fire comes they talk. Bush ain’t that guy. Republicans love the guy who ain’t that guy. Americans love the guy who ain’t that guy.

  29. 29
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:

    But Noonan is also a Wall St Journal conservative. She fears Palin’s faux populism (as she fears the more authentic populism of Mike Huckabee) because it is unpredictable and uncontrollable. McCain double downed when he selected Palin. She is woefully under-prepared to serve as VP (or, heaven help us, as president), but she also appears to be in tune with McCain’s independent, erratic temperament.

    McCain was playing Omaha style poker with two jokers and thought there was no way he could lose, but Obama was holding the natural cards to a royal straight flush!

  30. 30
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:

    I apparently need moderation. Hmmmm!

  31. 31
    Soylent Green says:

    The Light Goes On For Nooner

    Just like the one inside your refrigerator. Then she remembers who signs her paychecks.

  32. 32
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    McCain thought he had friends in the press but he lost them when he starting dating Sarah Palin.

    I can’t help but think that McCain’s alienating a fawning press is a sign of just how deeply disturbed and thoughtless he is.

  33. 33
    Greg says:

    Wrong. There are named persons and party. The reps have anointed Carter (CRA). Clinton (1995 FM, FM rules changes), Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, and BO (blocking FM, FM reforms, ACORN) as the culprits.

  34. 34
    NR says:

    I think the best evidence that McCain is in deep, deep trouble is how scarce mixu2’s been around here lately.

  35. 35
    Stuck in the Fun House says:

    Peggy Noonan has been in Nixonland for the last thirty years. Or, in other words:

    Noonan has by and large has been one of, and at times the chief Turd Polisher in the conservative movement. She has been their in-house intellectual and ideological filter during that time, and part of her schtick is to mildly criticize wingnut candidates and leaders in a way that seems humanizing and honest. Populism is something wingnuts fear most coming from the left because it is the political arrow aimed straight at the heart of what their really up to– and that is to snatch up the lions share of wealth in this country from the middle class. They believe it’s theirs to begin with, but for Marxist/liberal wealth re-distributors picking their pockets to give it to the rabble workers. I could well be wrong, but when Noonan goes after Palin as a populist (but less evil wingnut model) she’s obtusely attacking dems who are the real class warriors in her/their opinion. She’s making a bipartisan case trying to negate Obama’s "Change message" in a a too clever by half way. It’s how she operates.

    Today is conspiracy theory Sunday at the Funhouse.

  36. 36
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Here’s my take on Noonan.

    I think she’s pretty taken with Obama, his speechmaking skills, his speechwriting acumen, his broad appeal. She wants to be part of that but it’s unfortunately the other party. So her sniping about her own candidates comes from an envious place: why can’t our folks be as awesome as Obama, Reagan was, hey Obama reminds me of Reagan, fuck fuck fuck Obama is the bad guy, must.. fight.. it..

  37. 37
    Capelza Gradenko says:

    gbear at # 10

    "For the 2007 tax year, Todd Palin’s self-employment brought him $66,893 in gross receipts — $49,893 from fishing and $17,000 from snowmachine racing. But, the returns show, he claimed so many deductions that he reported only $15,513 net profit from the fishing operation and claimed a $9,639 loss from his racing, leaving him with an overall net income of only $5,874."

    I hate to do this, but fishermen are self employed (the vast majority anyway), even crew are considered self employed for IRS purposes and get 1099s instead of W2s. Netting 15 K plus on nearly 50K is not that out of whack. I understand that Palin has his own fishing site in Bristol Bay, and assuming he hired any crew, they are paid out of that 50K, not to mention supplies, travel..which is very expensive, which can cost a bundle. If he is self-employed..the income shows as the gross for his fishing business if it isn’t incorporated. We aren’t either…and if you were to look at our gross versus our net, it would look something similar in percentages.

    The snowmobiling, I don’t know about.

    This doesn’t mean I am defending or approving of the Palins. But commerical fishing is a high cost industry.

  38. 38
    Comrade Napoleon says:

    About 3 or 4 years ago I was dating a woman who worked in Noonan’s office in the Reagan administration. She would even pal around with her and baby sit her kid, so she knew her on a little better on a personal basis then your typical office relationship.

    Anyways I forget all the details but while I was seeing her Noonan wrote a particularly wingnut column or something like that, that, I think, if I am remembering correctly, caused others to write something to the effect that Noonan was nuts. Anyways I used it an opportunity (I think I emailed her the links to the articles or commentary) to see if I could get her to offer me an opinion on Noonan. Although she put it very diplomatically, and it was clear she personally liked Noonan and praised her for being very smart, in effect she said that Noonan has a very weak grasp on reality at times, and in my mind basically confirmed the “she’s nuts” story, but she didn’t want to say it that bluntly.

    I sure hope that woman doesn’t read this blog. Since I bet she could guess who I am (And by the way I would love to ask her what she thinks of Palin as a regular moderate, Episcopalian type Republican that my grandpa would have recognized).

  39. 39
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    The snowmobiling, I don’t know about.

    That’s where ya drive an appropriately-designed personal vehicular craft from one point to another in the snow. Oftentimes, like-minded individuals will set up competitions with prize money being awarded to the top finishers. It’s kinda complicated.

  40. 40
    jcricket says:

    The Republicans and the McCain campaign and Bible Spice don’t care about this stuff. These are academics. Who can trust them?

    I don’t disagree with you John, but there’s something subtle shifting out from under the feet of Republicans that hurts their long term prospects. First, the whole "with us or against us" philosophy makes enemies faster than friends.

    Scientists are now enemies. Soon economists. Judges that don’t rule their way. Teachers. Unions. Immigrants. Gays. And so on.

    Secondly, who is going to provide "cover" in the form of working in a think tank, or being a sympathetic journalist or pundit? Sure, you can get anyone to work at Fox News, but if you increasingly make the media, science & facts your enemy, there’s going to be no one to provide any sort of "back up" for ridiculous statements made by Hannity, Limbaugh, etc.

    I don’t doubt there will still be 20-30% of people nationally on board with this party mentality. And that in some areas the percentage will be higher. But it’s not a demographically wise strategy.

  41. 41
    ninerdave says:

    VP debate in a minute, I love these things:

    link

  42. 42
    Zuzu Hussein's Petals says:

    Maybe Noonan picked up the latest Newsweek:

    Yes, she won the debate by not imploding. But governing requires knowledge, and mindless populism is just that—mindless.

  43. 43

    […] to cover for that ever since, and then finally venting a bit earlier today on Meet the Press, as John at Balloon Juice noted (with some appropriate scorn). To quote her: She is a natural. I, I will tell you, I, I feel […]

  44. 44
    jcricket says:

    BTW – Here is Yglesias with the same line of thinking regarding the economists (aggregate) increasingly leftward tilt:

    The overall leftward tilt of the profession goes somewhat against the image of economics as dominated by free marketers and, I suppose, in part reflects the conservative coalition’s steady alienation of educated professionals everywhere.

    I’m going to get a Godwin’s law smackdown, but it’s like the famous poem by Rev. Neimoeller (first they came for the…). Republicans didn’t stop with their hatred of "communists". They have made hatred their central tenet, and fear their primary motivator. It’s no wonder the list of enemies has grown.

  45. 45
    David says:

    That’s where ya drive an appropriately-designed personal vehicular craft from one point to another in the snow. Oftentimes, like-minded individuals will set up competitions with prize money being awarded to the top finishers. It’s kinda complicated.

    ….but that’s not important right now.

  46. 46
    Jim says:

    She was in the same place you were for 28 of those years John. Why rag her just because she’s late to the party?

  47. 47
    Anne Laurie says:

    Don’t forget the sexism angle. Noonan’s spent 30 years playing King Lear’s Dutiful Daughter — cheerleading every nasty, wrong-headed, short-term-goal-oriented attack on the Reality-Based Community. She’s been the Go-To Lady Intellectual for the fReichtard/Robber Baron points on the GOP triangle coalition, working tirelessly to keep the "Daddy Party" in power, happy to sell her soul (or at least her intellectual integrity) for a pat on the head from this year’s Big Poppa Reagan avatar. And after all these years & all these efforts, Daddy McCain chooses his idea of the perfect female Republican… and she’s a perky, half-bright, vicious little rodent with a big beauty-pageant grin, a bottomless sense of entitlement, and a string of trailer-park relatives. In Noonan’s political soap opera, Palin has shown up as the Evil Trophy Wife/Stepmother who turns Big Daddy’s head with her meritricious charms as she schemes to destroy the GOP Family Brand for her own benefit & that of her witless, trashy kinfolk.

  48. 48
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    Anne Laurie@47. Damn, wish I’d written that. Nicely and thoughtfully put.

  49. 49
    John Cole says:

    @Anne Laurie: I just wanted to chime in and state this is one of the greatest sentences this election:

    “And after all these years & all these efforts, Daddy McCain chooses his idea of the perfect female Republican… and she’s a perky, half-bright, vicious little rodent with a big beauty-pageant grin, a bottomless sense of entitlement, and a string of trailer-park relatives.”

    That was a thing of beauty.

  50. 50
    DougJ says:

    I’m not a fan of Nooner but it is striking to me that so many openly conservative commentators — Krauthammer, Will, Brooks, Noonan, Parker — have been fairly harsh (and at times even honest) in their assessment of McPalin while the so-called centrist ones — Broder, Cokie Roberts, etc. — continue to worship at the altar of the two great mavericks.

  51. 51
    Stuck in the Fun House says:

    she’s a perky, half-bright, vicious little rodent with a big beauty-pageant grin, a bottomless sense of entitlement, and a string of trailer-park relatives.”

    Palin in a wingnut shell!!

  52. 52
    John Cole says:

    @DougJ: That is because as masters of the dominant narrative, their true ideology is Beltway Insider.

  53. 53
    Comrade Peter J says:

    You do have to hand it to the GOP. They’ve managed to convince millions of people that they can’t trust experts, they can’t trust the media, they can only trust the party. It allows them to explain away virtually anything.

    Also, don’t trust anyone that doesn’t have those precious small town values or anyone that has connections with pesky foreigners.

    Which brings me to this:

    The Khmer Rouge government arrested, tortured and eventually executed anyone suspected of belonging to several categories of supposed "enemies":

    anyone with connections to the former government or with foreign governments
    professionals and intellectuals – in practice this included almost everyone with an education, or even people wearing glasses (which, according to the regime, meant that they were literate)
    ethnic Vietnamese, ethnic Chinese, Cambodian Christians, Muslims and the Buddhist monks
    Homosexuals
    "economic sabotage" for which many of the former urban dwellers (who had not starved to death in the first place) were deemed to be guilty of by virtue of their lack of agricultural ability.

    Just saying.
    I guess thanks to Sarah Palin, people wearing glasses has nothing to fear.

  54. 54
    Brachiator says:

    And after all these years & all these efforts, Daddy McCain chooses his idea of the perfect female Republican… and she’s a perky, half-bright, vicious little rodent with a big beauty-pageant grin, a bottomless sense of entitlement, and a string of trailer-park relatives.

    Conservatives have always been attracted to perky, vicious female avatars, e.g., Michelle Malkin or Ann Coulter. Palin is actually less frightening than these two in many respects.

  55. 55
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:

    Anyways I forget all the details but while I was seeing her Noonan wrote a particularly wingnut column or something like that, that, I think, if I am remembering correctly, caused others to write something to the effect that Noonan was nuts.

    So Much to Savor?

  56. 56
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    Conservatives have always been attracted to perky, vicious female avatars, e.g., Michelle Malkin or Ann Coulter.
    It’s because those women have more testosterone than they do.

  57. 57
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:

    I think she’s pretty taken with Obama, his speechmaking skills, his speechwriting acumen, his broad appeal. She wants to be part of that but it’s unfortunately the other party.

    Personally, I think people like Noonan are so used to being on the winning team and like that feeling so much that they are getting buyer’s remorse because McCain ain’t it.

  58. 58
    priscianus jr says:

    "Where has Peggy Noonan been for the past thirty years?"

    Peggy Noonan has been in a dream world of her own devising, where it’s morning in America again. What we may be observing here is, possibly, her dawning realization that maybe it’s not morning in America again. I wonder if she’ll ever come to realize that it never was morning in America again.

  59. 59
    Comrade Napoleon says:

    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII, good example of Peggy in la la land, but as I think about it it would have been spring/early summer of 04 I would have been going out with her, so it was some other column sent in from fantasy land.

  60. 60
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:
    Conservatives have always been attracted to perky, vicious female avatars, e.g., Michelle Malkin or Ann Coulter.

    It’s because those women have more testosterone than they do.

    Well that’s obvious. When fear is the main engine that drives the party, testosterone is obviously severely lacking.

    I have more testosterone than conservatives and I’m a very feminine female.

  61. 61
    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII says:

    CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII, good example of Peggy in la la land, but as I think about it it would have been spring/early summer of 04 I would have been going out with her, so it was some other column sent in from fantasy land.

    Well, she visits there quite often. Savor just seemed to be one of the crazier ones.

  62. 62
    charlotte says:

    Peggy = The Eternal Ingenue.

    And writer of some of the most rococo bullshit out there.

  63. 63
    bluespapa says:

    When Republicans were bailing on Bush and claiming he wasn’t "really" a conservative or a Real Republican, Glen Greenwaldd marshaled a bunch of quotes from them supporting their hero, and pointed out that there was nothing about what Bush had done they didn’t support except begin his losing streak, dragging the rest of them with it.

    Polish the Guillotines is right–it’s rats off the sinking ship. She’s leaving just enough to grab hold and claim to have been right about Palin for the next fifty years. She killed, it was Sarah Palin night–and it’s dangerous populism. Her bets are covered.

  64. 64
    Brachiator says:

    @bluespapa:

    Polish the Guillotines is right—it’s rats off the sinking ship. She’s leaving just enough to grab hold and claim to have been right about Palin for the next fifty years.

    Hillary Clinton appears to be engaging in her own odd form of bet hedging ("Hillary Clinton praises Sarah Palin"):

    HILLARY CLINTON, Barack Obama’s defeated opponent in the Democratic primary, has infuriated his supporters by praising Sarah Palin, the Republican vice-presidential candidate, for her performance in last week’s television debate.

    “It is amazing, you know, she’s been thrust in the spotlight with very little national preparation and I think, all things considered, you saw a very composed and effective debater,” Clinton said.

    Her husband Bill recently issued some compliments of his own. “I come from Arkansas, I get why she’s hot out there,” he said.

    Her husband’s lukewarm endorsement of Obama was parodied on Saturday Night Live, the satirical show that has become must-see television after the deadly accurate portrayals of Palin by Tina Fey, the comedian.

  65. 65
    hilzoy says:

    John: I get it. But Sarah Palin and her fans are not, I imagine, among my readers anyways. If I knew how a latte-sipping east coast faculty brat like myself might convince them, I’d try it. But alas…

    btw, nice site redesign.

  66. 66
    daveinboca says:

    Noonan is an Upper East Side resident who wants to stay in touch with her Upper West Side polital commissariat members.

    Rather than rococo bullshit, I think she peddles a sort of lace-curtain Irish disdain for those sad folks on the side of the tracks that doesn’t consume NY bullshit while believing it’s Hershey Bars.

    She’s a snob, an elitist’s elitist, and simply ’round the bend about what former Reagan Democrats now feel and need. She’s got hers and to hell with the hindmost.

    Especially if they have an irritating accent and have not been divorced. And had five kids. How annoying.

  67. 67
    Batocchio says:

    Well, Hilzoy’s not writing about the reality-challenged community, or pitching to them (doh, just noticed she responded herself). As for Noonan, Roy Edroso probably has the best posts on her. She, Brooks, some of the the smarter conservative columnists will trot out a piece of insight now and again to bolster their cachet, and sell themselves as "reasonable conservatives" to the reality-based. But they’re hacks. Noonan praised Bush, then condemned him when he was a failure to try to protect the brand. Noonan can make conversation, to be sure, and her hackdom is sometimes fairly skillful (Krauthammer is the same), but it’s not as if she or her circle have ever had much intellectual integrity.

  68. 68
    Ash Can says:

    "Where has Peggy Noonan been for the past thirty years?"

    This is what gets me. Anytime I hear of her criticizing Bush or any of the other leading assholes of Republicania, I think, "What the hell is she complaining about? She was one of the people who, starting with Ronald Reagan’s first successful bid for the presidency, got us where we are today. Everything she’s helped set this country up for has come to pass. She should be thrilled."

    And BTW, isn’t she the Famous Person who claimed that Palin omgKILLED in the debate?

  69. 69
    amocz says:

    AManOfConstantZorro here, with a query regarding the proper application of internetiquette, for the New Guardians of Such Things:

    Q: How many "internet traditions" does one violate by linking to (a.k.a. "pimping") one’s own comments on the topic of a given thread, that were left a another thread, on a different blog, as opposed to using ^c^v to multiply what may have been one pile of crap there, into many POC’s salted around the web?

    A: All of them.

    Yeah, I was afraid of that. Oh, well… in the immortal words of Emily Litella:

    Never mind.

  70. 70

    […] You really have to read this Noam Scheiber piece, and once you do, you will begin to understand better the divisive populism that so disturbed Noonan yesterday: […]

  71. 71
    Marshall says:

    There are not a lot of Joe Sixpacks in Yale’s Skull and Bones.

    Not unless the A/C needs work.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] You really have to read this Noam Scheiber piece, and once you do, you will begin to understand better the divisive populism that so disturbed Noonan yesterday: […]

  2. […] to cover for that ever since, and then finally venting a bit earlier today on Meet the Press, as John at Balloon Juice noted (with some appropriate scorn). To quote her: She is a natural. I, I will tell you, I, I feel […]

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