I still don’t understand this

MoDo quotes Leon Wieseltier of the New Republic saying:

“The Internet is like closing time at a blue-collar bar in Boston. Everyone’s drunk and ugly and they’re going to pass out in a few minutes.”

I get the drunk and ugly part and I understand why the patrons of the bar in Boston might be ready to pass out, but why are bloggers ready to pass out? I thought about this all day yesterday, but I still don’t get it.

Someone’s started a contest
:

The reader who completes the phrase “The New Republic is like ______” with the most amusing line wins a free PBR at Solly’s on U Street.

All I can think of is I may be drunk but tomorrow I will be sober, but the New Republic will always be the magazine that endorsed Joe Lieberman for president in 2004.






35 replies
  1. 1
    Balconesfault says:

    And helped promote the careers of Fred Barnes and Charles Krauthammer …

  2. 2
    eric says:

    I sure hope TNR has its own laugh track. The word douchbag was actaully created just to describe those asses.

  3. 3
    MikeJ says:

    The New Republic is like goatse. You know you don’t want to look at it but people insist on linking to it for some reason.

  4. 4
    Keith G says:

    As to the Wieseltier quote, there’s nothing to understand except that some don’t appreciate this almost new, gate keeper free, wild west of opinions. They let the messiness veto the idea that its very useful.

  5. 5
    Jude says:

    They’ll also always be the magazine that ran Betsy McCaughey’s factless screeds the last time health care reform was on the table.

    Oh, and let Andrew Sullivan gush about The Bell Curve.

    Nice legacy there.

  6. 6
    Sputnik_Sweetheart says:

    Sigh. As a native Bostonian, I think I should be offended.

  7. 7
    Incertus says:

    but why are bloggers ready to pass out?

    I suspect he was going for some slam at bloggers being unable to close the deal politically (i.e. win elections) and was trying to link that to passing out before hooking up with one of the other drunk patrons. That he’s wrong about bloggers is no surprise–he works for the New Republic, after all. That he would let us in on his own sexual failings is another thing altogether.

  8. 8
    phasearth says:

    The full quote is: ““The velocity and volume on the Web are so great that nothing is forgotten and nothing is remembered. The Internet is like closing time at a blue-collar bar in Boston. Everyone’s drunk and ugly and they’re going to pass out in a few minutes.” The drunk and ugly part refers to “nothing is forgotten” and passing out part refers to “nothing is remembered.”

  9. 9
    Mojotron says:

    …a writing desk.”

  10. 10
    JK says:

    I hate broad, sweeping generalizations. Saying “the Internet is” is like saying “radio is” or “television is”. Undoubtedly, there are plenty of blogs where the entire discussion consists of personal attacks and character assassination. There are plenty of blogs where the atmosphere is civil and there is a vibrant free flowing exchange of ideas and opinions with no malice whatsoever .

    Maureen Dowd is a coward. She can dish it out but she can’t take it. If she can get paid lots of money to write snarky columns where she routinely dismisses and insults people, she should be able to withstand criticism from anonymous readers.

  11. 11
    cleek says:

    i don’t know if it took mine or not. but it was:

    The New Republic is like Megan McArdle: vapid and obnoxious, but for some unknown reason, people still want me to know what it said.

  12. 12
    fishbane says:

    TNR is like that brother-in-law the accountant who has to disagree with anything anyone says at the holiday table just to prove how smart and clever they are.

    But that doesn’t quite work; there’s a reason the brother-in-law keeps getting invited back.

  13. 13
    dmsilev says:

    When describing things like the Internet, I much prefer the classics:

    “Usenet is like a herd of performing elephants with diarrhea — massive, difficult to redirect, awe-inspiring, entertaining, and a source of mind-boggling amounts of excrement when you least expect it.”
    Gene Spafford, 1992

    Replace ‘Usenet’ with ‘the Internet’ or even ‘the blogosphere’, and it’s still got far more truth than anything MoDo has typed out in the last several years.

    -dms

  14. 14
    El Cid says:

    Does this mean the New Republic still gets to lecture ‘teh left’ on how they are disingenuous and dismissive towards the working classes?

  15. 15
    Scott says:

    TNR is like that magazine that’s run by a really over-the-top racist ass, has employed multiple plagiarists, fabricators, and sockpuppeteers, threw a soldier correspondent under the bus because wingnuts were mad that it didn’t support their war propaganda, and has been steadily losing readers for years.

  16. 16
    ricky says:

    You lost me at “MoDo quotes.”

  17. 17
    Zifnab says:

    The TNR: you get about five seconds in before you realize you’re looking at stupid shit people were laughing at five years ago, like getting Rick Rolled by an old folks home.

  18. 18
    Da Bomb says:

    I think I would have to drop out of the contest because of the PBR. PBR tastes like piss.

  19. 19
    ricky says:

    @Zifnab:

    Your wonderful post reminded me how timeless good humor can be. Looking at stupid shit by an old folks home has always made me ROTFLOL.

  20. 20
    Parole Officer Burke says:

    . . . the New Republic will always be the magazine that endorsed Joe Lieberman for president in 2004.

    Does this mean that Balloon Juice will always be the blog that endorsed George W. Bush for president in 2004?

  21. 21
    Chris says:

    The New Republic is like picking through your toddler’s poop to find a $39.97 earring that he *may* have eaten. Sure, you might find something of marginal value in there, but wouldn’t it just be easier to flush the $39.97 down the toilet and not get all that shit on your hands?

  22. 22
    gnomedad says:

    @JK:

    I hate broad, sweeping generalizations. Saying “the Internet is” is like saying “radio is” or “television is”. Undoubtedly, there are plenty of blogs where the entire discussion consists of personal attacks and character assassination. There are plenty of blogs where the atmosphere is civil and there is a vibrant free flowing exchange of ideas and opinions with no malice whatsoever .

    Exactly right. And if you’re only interested in demonstrating your brilliant point, you just jump from link to like-minded link and “discover”, by God, what “the Internet is”.

  23. 23
    thomas says:

    @Parole Officer Burke:
    not fair, balloon-juice has caught up with reality. TNR has been caught with its head up the anal orifice (for about the last 25 years)
    I’m so old I can remember when it was actually sort-of liberal, then it became the house rag for Likud, and now…

  24. 24
    gnomedad says:

    @Chris:
    Thread winner, although I think a TNR subscription is actually $29.97.

  25. 25
    Joshua says:

    @Sputnik_Sweetheart: Everybody knows that when the bar closes, you just stumble to your friend’s place in Allston to drink some more. Whoever wrote that sentence doesn’t know jack about partying in Boston. ;)

  26. 26
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    TNR is like cold pizza for breakfast the morning after you came home from the bar. Only that’s not pizza you’re looking at, it’s actually the nasty black and organge and red and green spot on the rug where everybody who manages to stumble in the door at 3 am stops to hurl before passing out, and they keep hitting the same spot every single time, and no matter how much carpet shampoo you use you can’t ever seem to make that spot go away. So you just live with it, because what else are you going to do?

  27. 27
    chopper says:

    get the drunk and ugly part and I understand why the patrons of the bar in Boston might be ready to pass out, but why are bloggers ready to pass out? I thought about this all day yesterday, but I still don’t get it.

    well you can pass out from hyperventilating, and there’s a lot of that in the blogworld.

  28. 28

    TNR is like the storytellers at funerals. Sometimes some good stuff, but nothing they’d ever tell you in real time when it could have made a difference.

  29. 29
    gonzone says:

    The New Republican is like farting in public. Totally embarrassing and stinks too.

  30. 30
    bob h says:

    In 2000 Martin Peretz wrote the TNR endorsement of Al Gore that was one of the most beautiful pieces of writing I had ever seen. So much so that I subscribed for a few years, only to realize eventually that Peretz is a rather big bigot.

  31. 31
    jl says:

    The New Republic is like toilet paper that does not work.

    Sorry, that was blogggy and shrill and vulgar. I mean ‘bathroom tisss-ssue’.

  32. 32
    liberal says:

    @Parole Officer Burke:

    Does this mean that Balloon Juice will always be the blog that endorsed George W. Bush for president in 2004?

    TNR’s evil way predates the Loserman endorsement. Basically goes back to Marty Peretz’s purchase of the mag in the mid-1970s.

  33. 33
    Person of Choler says:

    According to Mickey Gilley, the girls all get prettier at closing time. I guess that’s not Ms. Dowd’s experience with closing times. This may explain why she is so crabby and snarky most of the time.

  34. 34
    jl says:

    I used to read TNR, but I value the publication getting the basic facts right very highly in terms of deciding what to read. Years ago I quit reading TNR.

    Now I read Balloon-juice. You take what you can get these days. Plus recipes, The Tunchinotor, and Lily. And RAMPS! TNR never had those.

  35. 35
    jl says:

    Sorry, I meant TunchinAtor. Don’t sic him on me, please.

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