I’ll show you the lite of the mind

Good stuff readers sent me or mentioned in the comments recently:






118 replies
  1. 1

    The prize for the David Brooks parody contest is … a David Brooks book. Way to provide incentive, guys.

  2. 2
    freelancer says:

    I saw Balko’s link. Why does he think that every single one of your critique’s of Glib, thoughtless, unironic, and unexamined libertarianism applies to HIM?

    I sense a blog-feud in the near future.

  3. 3
    Hunter Gathers says:

    Didn’t know that a front pager who gets eviscerated in the comments in 9 out of 10 of his posts gets to be ombudsman. Guess it pays to be glibertarian.

  4. 4
    fasteddie9318 says:

    Thank heavens ED is going to be able to serve as a conduit between our glibertarian superiors and us teeming masses of dependent, unRandian ignorance.

  5. 5
    Suck It Up! says:

    So uhm, msnbc just suspend Joe Scar.. for political contributions.

  6. 6
  7. 7
    Catherine D. says:

    The “Lite of the Mind” is sort of a U of C inside joke. This contest appeared in the most recent alumni magazine and inexplicably described Bobo as “evenhanded”.

    The only conservadroid idiot I ever knew at the U of C was Norman Podhoretz’s snotty daughter.

  8. 8
    A Duck says:

    Isn’t it about time to tell ED Kain to take his disingenuous hackery and go DIAF?

  9. 9
    Suffern Ace says:

    Ten teams and my Brewers still won’t probably be one of those teams. The higher the number of teams in the playoffs goes, the more it actually sucks to root for one of the hapless teams…

  10. 10
    me says:

    @Suck It Up!:

    (CNN) – MSNBC has suspended anchor Joe Scarborough for two days without pay due to eight contributions he made to political candidates between 2004 and 2008, according to a statement from MSNBC president Phil Griffin.

    Scarborough is an asshole but this is just stupid. Can we expect him back Tuesday?

  11. 11
    Tonybrown74 says:

    Not that anyone should care, but it’s being reported that now, Joe Scarborough has been suspended for 2 days without pay because he did not get permission for contributions made in 2004 and 2008.

    Not that I am a fan of Mornin’ Ho, but MSNBC’s president is starting to look really ridiculous now.

  12. 12
    debbie says:

    National Book Awards: Patti Smith wins and the news comes out that Franzen didn’t even make the short list. There is justice in this world!

  13. 13
    fasteddie9318 says:

    Somebody better put Mika on suicide watch. Two days without the object of her creepy obsession are going to be difficult to survive.

  14. 14
    Suck It Up! says:

    @me:

    It is stupid, but I won’t be signing any petitions to get him back. Not that I signed any for KO.

  15. 15
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @A Duck:

    I don’t know about that, but I do wonder why someone with such obvious contempt for the site doesn’t have his keys taken back.

  16. 16
    Alwhite says:

    I’d like to volunteer if BJ ever decides it should have an ombudsthing on staff.

    I can tell people to f off in several different languages and methods all the while making light of their concerns and reinforcing whatever stereotypes Mr. Cole feels need repeating.

    I would consider it an honor (as well as possible training for a real gig at the WaHoPost!

  17. 17
    geg6 says:

    @Tonybrown74:

    Well, he pretty much had to suspend him once it was discovered that Joey Scar lied about how many political contributions he’s given since he’s been on MSNBC. He owned up to two that he apparently got permission for. Turns out there were another 5 or so that he failed to report to the network.

    Seems to me that this is a much more egregious breach of the rules than what Olbermann did. Keith admitted up front all his contributions. Joey Scar admitted only to what the network already knew about and lied about/hid/”forgot” about the others, even after knowing what happened to Olbermann.

  18. 18
    eemom says:

    as a public service to the blog, I hereby quote below the complete words of condemnation from our glibertarian True Libertarian overlords:

    Meanwhile, Balloon Juice reaches new depths of libertarian-bashing hackery. It’s probably better to first read Julian Sanchez’s thoughtful post before reading the Balloon Juice reaction, which is really the intellectual equivalent of sitting in the back of the room and flinging spitballs. Note that in the comments DougJ, the post’s author, acknowledges that maybe Julian does good work, “but I just can’t support anything to do with the Koch brothers anymore.” How mature. At least he got the headline right.

    from the commenters:

    Just a humble suggestion: maybe it’s time to stop reading Balloon Juice. They were exciting a few years ago, when the owner was still in transition politically, but I don’t get the sense they’re all that influential, and their writers are mostly subpar. E.D. in particular is excluded from that criticism, but otherwise…

    New depths of libertarian-bashing hackery” is misleading because it implies that what certain BJ authors, and certain of their fawning commenters, are bashing is actual libertarianism, as opposed to their malicious and fatuous strawman version of libertarianism.
    The anti-libertarians of BJ are like the guy at the rally with the “Obama Seekrit Commie Mooslem Negroid” sign. They don’t care if their attacks bear any resemblance to reality, because that’s not the point. The point is to vent at people they hate. It bears the same relationship to an actual critique as the girls-bathroom stall graffiti at Hot Topic.

    kind of in the mood for a good blog war, I am….

  19. 19
    Keith G says:

    What is this basabol of which you speak?

    I am always happy to pimp Chris Hedges’ Death of the Liberal Class. Parts of it need to be committed to memory, such as:

    The inability of the liberal class to acknowledge that corporations have wrested power from the hands of citizens, that the Constitution and its guarantees of personal liberty have become irrelevant, and that the phrase consent of the governed is meaningless, has left it speaking and acting in ways that no longer correspond to reality

  20. 20

    MLB should just have a round-robin tournament at the end of the year and give everyone a participation trophy. I’m sure Cub fans would appreciate it.

  21. 21
    Rosalita says:

    @eemom:

    ruh roh!

  22. 22
    eemom says:

    @fasteddie9318:

    seems we iz just too stoopid to be libertariyuns.

    we iz fit fer nuttin ‘xept being “fawning commenters” to “subpar” posters.

    my feefees iz hurt. : (

  23. 23
    Corner Stone says:

    ED Kain is about as useful and intellectually honest as any ombudsman I’ve ever read.
    So he’s got that going for him. Which is nice.

  24. 24
    evinfuilt says:

    @eemom:

    Ahhh, so they’re going for the no true-scotsman defense, how original.

  25. 25
    A Duck says:

    fasteddie9318: Yeah, sorry. I do get intemperate that way, and I know that gives the Ombudsman the vapors. Fortunately the only penalty is a sniffy comment in a few hours about how he knew that he would be rejected by liberals who never really think about anything the way libertarians do.

  26. 26
    geg6 says:

    @fasteddie9318:

    What I find offensive about the whole thing is the idea that he seems to think he’s the libertarian ombudsman, here to explain to all us dimwits the wonders of libertarianism. And the commenters there are nothing short of everything I ever guessed, let alone knew from personal experience, libertarians are. Talk about your self-deluded idiots. I think I recognize one or two of them who have had their asses handed to them here when they come to spout their Galtian fantasies.

    I think I hate libertarians even more than I hate GOPers and Teabaggers. Probably because they always seem intelligent right up to the point that you figure out they are libertarians and have no idea how the real world works.

  27. 27
    Corner Stone says:

    @fasteddie9318: Page views. It’s all about the page views.

  28. 28
    RosiesDad says:

    @me: Wednesday

  29. 29
    Silver says:

    @freelancer:

    Probably because he feels a bit of shame everytime Koch flexes his hand and twists his insides.

    I really like Balko for civil liberties, and agree with him most of the time. When he gets pissy about observations re: his employer, methinks the lady doth protest too much.

  30. 30
    PeakVT says:

    The regular-season schedule will almost certainly not be reduced from 162 games.

    If they want to add another round, April has to go. I refuse to care about any sport more than 6 months each year.

  31. 31
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @PeakVT:

    I refuse to care about any sport more than 6 months each year.

    That’s easily fixed; become a Pirates fan, and you only have to care about baseball 0 months each year.

  32. 32
    kdaug says:

    Aaaand – away we go!

  33. 33
    geg6 says:

    @fasteddie9318:

    become a Pirates fan, and you only have to care about baseball 0 months each year

    Heh. Indeed. Gotta admit, it’s nice to have a season off after the Pitt football, Steelers, Penguins, and Pitt basketball seasons are over.

  34. 34
    sherifffruitfly says:

    Stupidest thing of the day: Only 1 endzone will be used in the Northwestern U college football game this weekend.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/chic.....id=5824661

    What a bunch of fucking idiots.

  35. 35
    PeakVT says:

    @fasteddie9318: I’m an Orioles fan, so I have plenty of opportunity to not care already. Thanks for the suggestion, though!

  36. 36
    BGinCHI says:

    @debbie: Yes. A full measure of justice this year in the Nat’l Book Awards.

    Gordon’s novel is excellent and I urge everyone to read it if you’re interested.

  37. 37

    @eemom: Complaints about critics not taking on serious libertarian thought remind me of complaints directed to atheists that we don’t consider “sophisticated theological arguments”; they’re always just over the next hill. The one the sun hides behind, where the rainbow ends.

  38. 38

    @geg6: Whatever helps you sleep at night ;)

  39. 39
    Nied says:

    10 team playoffs? Lord that’s a terrible idea, if only because it would make the Red Sox and/or Yankees a near permanent fixture of the playoffs.

    I’m a Red Sox fan and I’d find that boring.

  40. 40
    BGinCHI says:

    @The Grand Panjandrum: Hey!

    Oh, yeah, we would.

    Prolly nickname the playoffs “The World Series.”

  41. 41
    cleek says:

    @sherifffruitfly:
    so, if there’s an interception, does everyone stop, rotate their positions 180deg, move to the opposite side of the field, then resume the play ?

  42. 42
    J sub D says:

    And I’m sorry to slip such a weighty topic into light-hearted discussion, but it looks like we’re headed towards having ten teams in the baseball play-offs.

    I can see the headline now. World Series delayed til April due to winter.

  43. 43
    El Tiburon says:

    Thanks E.D., glad we have an adult now to supervise us little ones.

    Exactly who does E.D. think his is ‘ombudsmaning’ for?

  44. 44
    BGinCHI says:

    @sherifffruitfly: It’s one more than either team needs.

  45. 45
    JPL says:

    @eemom: I saw that also, too. If Ed were around, I’d ask him, which democratic country he would aspire to emulate.

    New depths of libertarian-bashing hackery” is misleading because it implies that what certain BJ authors, and certain of their fawning commenters, are bashing is actual libertarianism, as opposed to their malicious and fatuous strawman version of libertarianism. The anti-libertarians of BJ are like the guy at the rally with the “Obama Seekrit Commie Mooslem Negroid” sign. They don’t care if their attacks bear any resemblance to reality, because that’s not the point. The point is to vent at people they hate. It bears the same relationship to an actual critique as the girls-bathroom stall graffiti at Hot Topic.

    This particular comment is awarded the strawman, hackery, medal of the day.

  46. 46
    Sentient Puddle says:

    @evinfuilt: I remember reading somewhere (I forget where exactly) a libertarian addressing some point John made here by saying that we should stop knocking them because libertarians are really all about the local issues.

    Then shut the fuck up about things like the macroeconomy?

    That struck me as another “no true Scotsman” moment. As far as anything that resembles local issues go, the only thing in recent memory that I can think of that libertarians raised a big stink about is the TSA. And I’m not sure that counts because everybody hates the TSA right now. Oh, and something about hair cutteries that I didn’t care enough about to pay enough attention to (or that might’ve just been Yglesias).

    Otherwise, the only things I really hear out of the mouths of self-proclaimed libertarians are things like the stimulus made things worse, health care reform is communism, reinstating the gold standard, and a general worship of some dumbass simplification of what a free market is that demonstrates that these people can’t be arsed to think more than three minutes about macroeconomic policy.

    And as long as the libertarian blogosphere is up in arms about that shit, I’m all for mocking the fuck out of them.

  47. 47
    jl says:

    So, we should email Kain when we want pet pics from Cole?

    I think the last Tunch pic (Tunch in orbit) was recycled, and last we saw of Cole’s cute damn little dogs, it was novelty act, with the laser eye beams.

    That stuff won’t cut it.

  48. 48
    me says:

    @RosiesDad: Yeah, I skipped over the words “two days”, guess I should read closer.

  49. 49
    BGinCHI says:

    In the movie version of Balloon Juice, the part of ED Kain will be played by Paul Rubens using his Pee Wee’s Funhouse voice, speaking to the other contributors as if they were talking chairs or windows.

  50. 50
    Corner Stone says:

    Any time I read the comments section at The Agitator, I get the overwhelming feeling that 90% of the commenters are wearing a monocle as they type.

  51. 51
    Kiril says:

    I’m liking that Dolphin Kazoo, thanks for the tip.

  52. 52
    DougJ says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

  53. 53
    A Duck says:

    Hey, I just wish Kain would sack up and throw some elbows here instead of running off to some sympathetic audience to cry about how uncivilized we are, what with our potty-mouths and our faliure to automatically genuflect everytime someone mutters ‘free market’.

  54. 54
    bemused says:

    If there is such a person as an ombudsman here, I like the guy, who on occasion when seriously annoyed, tells us to knock it off or get a life.

  55. 55
    cleek says:

    @Suck It Up!:
    so, they gave him an extended T-giving break.

    sweeet!

  56. 56
    burnspbesq says:

    @A Duck:

    “Isn’t it about time to tell ED Kain to take his disingenuous hackery and go DIAF?”

    No.

    Simple solution: don’t like it, don’t read it.

    If you can’t handle the occasional challenge to your smugly closed-minded worldview, that’s you problem, not ours. You own it. Deal with it.

  57. 57
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @themann1086:
    Arguing with libertarians is like chasing pigeons in the park and trying to catch one with your bare hands. Whenever you get too close they flit off in every direction imaginable (and some that aren’t). You’re never going to catch one and even if you did, what exactly do you plan on doing with it?

    This is an activity which is great if you need the exercise and like to get flushed in the face and out of breath just for the sheer hell of it. Otherwise, why bother?

  58. 58
    Skipjack says:

    That is particularly humorous. And yet, it goes unsaid here in comments that DougJ was wrong and ED was right, as was Balko and indeed Sanchez. If an ombudsman keeps writers honest, then they should step up on the page where corrections are needed. Come on ED, underline it on BJ and then there’s no politicking.

    It’s not particularly libertarian or weenie to wish to smite people who break into your home with furious vengeance, or have them hauled into court and tell them you are smarter than they are.

  59. 59
    shortstop says:

    @Ken Thanks. You know, I sort of feel like perhaps my proper role there is as ombudsman. I’m still figuring it out myself. I still write a lot more over at The League.

    Oh, what a revolting guy this is. He is so utterly without self-awareness. Just zero idea how he comes off to others.

  60. 60
    Peter says:

    I heard Chris Hedges on CBC Radio a few week ago talking about his book. He pissed me off so badly that I was practically frothing at the mouth. He talked about how shit is all fucked up in the US, and WITHOUT SAYING A WORD about the right wing machine and wealthy interests that caused it to get fucked up, he placed all of the blame on the failure of Liberal institutions to prevent it. As if it was just a force of nature with no human input, and dem Liberals were entirely at fault.

  61. 61
    Alex S. says:

    If this site has an ombudsman, it’s probably Just Some Fuckhead.

  62. 62
    shortstop says:

    @BGinCHI: So fabulous.

  63. 63
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Skipjack:

    It’s not particularly libertarian or weenie to wish to smite people who break into your home with furious vengeance, or have them hauled into court and tell them you are smarter than they are.

    I think the point is that libertarians scream about the “police state” and the oppressive hand of the government right up to the point where they themselves benefit from that oppressive hand.

    See also self-described libertarians who work for the government.

    @shortstop:

    Oh, what a revolting guy this is. He is so utterly without self-awareness. Just zero idea how he comes off to others.

    In other words, he’s a true libertarian. ;-)

  64. 64
    burnspbesq says:

    @A Duck:

    “Hey, I just wish Kain would sack up and throw some elbows here instead of running off to some sympathetic audience to cry about how uncivilized we are”

    The fact that you’re uncivilized isn’t the problem. The problem is that you see it as a feature, not a bug, and feel yourself entitled to inflict it on everyone.

  65. 65
    MattR says:

    I think the proper response to the Joe Scarborough suspension is whatever the term is for the exact opposite of a boycott. I think it would be great if “Morning Joe”‘s ratings spike the two days he is not there.

  66. 66
    DougJ says:

    @Skipjack:

    It’s not particularly libertarian or weenie to wish to smite people who break into your home with furious vengeance, or have them hauled into court and tell them you are smarter than they are.

    When it involves a missing Playstation and an obsession with surveillance, then, yes it is particularly libertarian. I said nothing about anyone being a weenie.

  67. 67
    shortstop says:

    @burnspbesq:

    If you can’t handle the occasional challenge to your smugly closed-minded worldview, that’s you problem, not ours. You own it. Deal with it.

    I don’t give a damn either way if Kain posts here another hour or another decade, but this made me laugh. It’s so utterly like what burnspbesq comes up with about once a week to convince himself that he’s not a towering ass; others here just can’t handle the challenge of being confronted with his radically moderate thinking.

  68. 68
    BGinCHI says:

    I thought an ombudsman was a guy who wore a Bud t-shirt, had a worn Dale Jr. Bud #8 hat, only drank Bud, and called people who drink Miller “fags.”

    Whadimiss?

  69. 69
    fasteddie9318 says:

    It’s not ED’s opinions or arguments that are the problem. I just find something distasteful about a guy who is a front-page poster here but goes off and rips this place in other forums. There’s something unseemly about that.

  70. 70
    A Duck says:

    Ahhhh, Burnsey. Always mistaking the persona for the person. Top notch legal mind you are. Remember to wipe your mouth and dust off the knees whe you are done for they day.

    Got enough money to keep the kids out of public school yet? Wouldn’t want to let them rub elbows with the middling sort, would we?

  71. 71
    eemom says:

    I’m kind of surprised that E.D. or anyone else would want to claim the title of “ombudsman.” Cuz, you know, it’s kind of a funny word, and probably most people don’t even know what an ombudsman is.

    ‘Sides, isn’t the concept of an “ombudsman” itself kind of anti-libertarian, if you think about it?

  72. 72
    Paula says:

    @Peter:

    Well, I saw this discussion on naked capitalism, and there are a number of commenters who point out that Hedges lacks the theoretical and historical arguments (stemming perhaps from a lack of knowledge) to actually make any deep insights and perform any intellectual interventions into the phenomenon he wants to describe. There’s a lot of history to be mined in the classification “liberal” as well as a lot of different ways that political theorists have idealized the word. For ex, in the current American context, our definitions of “liberal” would include a number of ideas mined from both JS Mill and Antonio Gramsci. But Hedges sort of uses the “mainstream” definition of liberal without actually questioning it, and therefore fails to question why this whole class of people would do the things they do and instead spends a long time just writing about how wrong these people are.

    Interesting comment to highlight from “Valissa”:

    Hedges as an M.Div. from Harvard’s Divinity School. His moralistic approach to liberalism is typical of liberalism’s decline into mere theology and away from worldly power. This and your other critique’s of liberalsim as actually center-Right are some of the reasons I no longer consider myself a liberal… along with the fact that I completely intellectually reject the one-dimensional Left-Center-Right paradigm as a ridiculously inadequate model of political thought and analysis. Having studied religion quite extensively myself, the dangers of dualism and good vs evil thinking that pervades the L-C-R model make it the perfect mental frame for controlling the masses via propaganda.

  73. 73
    geg6 says:

    @eemom:

    Personally, I’ve always considered DougJ our ombudsman. Especially since he is the one who ombudsmans (say that five times fast) for us to the WaPo ombudsman. ED never does that.

  74. 74
    Davis X. Machina says:

    What I find offensive about the whole thing is the idea that he seems to think he’s the libertarian ombudsman, here to explain to all us dimwits the wonders of libertarianism

    Any self-respecting barabrian tribe pops the first couple of missionaries straight into a pot.

    Anybody got any aromatic vegetables?

    I think the point is that libertarians scream about the “police state” and the oppressive hand of the government right up to the point where they themselves benefit from that oppressive hand.

    My pet peeve: their overarching belief that there is no coercion except state coercion…

  75. 75
    ChrisS says:

    Re: what the Ombudsman was replying to:

    “New depths of libertarian-bashing hackery” is misleading because it implies that what certain BJ authors, and certain of their fawning commenters, are bashing is actual libertarianism, as opposed to their malicious and fatuous strawman version of libertarianism.

    You know, real libertarianism has never even been tried! I wish they would focus their comments on that and not the half-assed libertarianism that’s used to justify shitty, half-baked policies that only benefit 1% of the country. Of course, I disagree with that libertarianism. But that’s not a valid a reason to vote for someone that will raise my taxes.

    Or something like that. Real libertarianism is fucking retarded, too.

  76. 76
    geg6 says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    My pet peeve: their overarching belief that there is no coercion except state coercion…

    Exactofuckinglutely.

    I think it is this exact belief that explains why so few women are libertarians. We KNOW better.

  77. 77
    DougJ says:

    @geg6:

    Just wait til my post about how we should take Andrew Breitbart more seriously. ;)

  78. 78
    Ailuridae says:

    @El Tiburon:

    It seems to me that much like the word ‘monopoly’; E.D. Kain doesn’t understand what ‘Ombudsman’ means.

  79. 79
    geg6 says:

    @DougJ:

    See!!! I knew you were our real ombudsman!

    Take that, ED Kain!

  80. 80
    JWL says:

    @J sub D:

    As was pointed out to me recently, one simple solution to ridiculously extended seasons is for each team to schedule double-headers on a regular basis throughout the season. The owners won’t go for it, of course, unless they could double the ticket prices. Too bad, too. When I was a kid, they were staple.

    And MLB ought to just get it over with, and appoint David Stern their commissioner.

  81. 81
    Lost Left Coaster says:

    @Nied:

    That’s exactly right, and that’s why they’re doing it. This really makes me mad. It’s like this is a reaction to the fact that two “uninteresting” (in my opinion much more interesting) teams made it to the World Series this year.

    There is no reason to make the playoffs longer! They are long enough, for god’s sake, we already have the World Series stretching into November already.

  82. 82
    JPL says:

    @DougJ: Dear Ombudsman, If I never took Andrew Breitbart seriously, can I take him more seriously?

  83. 83
    Corner Stone says:

    @A Duck:

    Got enough money to keep the kids out of public school yet? Wouldn’t want to let them rub elbows with the middling sort, would we?

    Heaven forfend! Not…public schools !!
    You should be more courteous and warn burnspbesq before you mention such a vile and unthinkable issue!

  84. 84
    Corner Stone says:

    @burnspbesq:

    The fact that you’re uncivilized isn’t the problem. The problem is that you see it as a feature, not a bug, and feel yourself entitled to inflict it on everyone.

    Simple solution: don’t like it, don’t read it.

    If you can’t handle the occasional challenge to your smugly closed-minded worldview, that’s you problem, not ours. You own it. Deal with it.

  85. 85
  86. 86
    Bob L says:

    @eemom: Those are no TRUE libertarians being bashed here.

    I have to say that is what is so delightful about Libertarianism as a target of scorn. The utterly plastic nature of its philosophy that allows it be twisted and contort into what ever the self declared libertarians wants at the time. It’s really nothing more than a political exercise in the True Scotsman fallacy – when ever Libertarians fail in practice the rest of the Libertarians simply denounce them as no True Libertarians and smugly talk about the coming utopia when their ideas are truly enacted.

  87. 87

    @A Duck: Precisely. Say what you will about the [Obots/firebaggers] (pick one! or both!), neither “faction” here on BJ is afraid to mix it up with other people. Has Kain responded in the comments here? Ever? For all of the talk above about the BJ commentariat fearing some “challenging” [ha!] ideas, it’s Kain who’s too cowardly to actually respond in an unfriendly comment section. I could understand if it was heavily (and unfairly) moderated, but come on…

    ETA @Bob L: As Glenn Greenwald said, conservatism cannot fail, it can only be failed.

  88. 88
    Brachiator says:

    @geg6:

    I think I hate libertarians even more than I hate GOPers and Teabaggers. Probably because they always seem intelligent right up to the point that you figure out they are libertarians and have no idea how the real world works.

    I found this little tidbit in the comments section of the Reason magazine blogs, from a 2007 piece on the magic of free markets:

    Look at Ireland in the 21st Century. They cut regulation and taxes and became the “Celtic Tiger”.

    I wonder how the libertarians explain Ireland’s current fiscal problems? Or how they explain missing the obvious, as a recent NY Times piece reminded people?

    As my colleague Landon Thomas explained early last year, Ireland’s slow-motion economic catastrophe did not take everyone by surprise. Morgan Kelly, who teaches economics at University College Dublin, “began sounding the alarm of a coming real estate crash in late 2006, the peak of the property boom,” Mr. Thomas writes.
    __
    For his efforts, Mr. Kelly was assigned the nickname Dr. Doom, accused of “the worst kind of economic scaremongering” by a colleague and encouraged to kill himself by the country’s prime minister.

    Also, too, I love the irony of these two recent stories:

    Dell’s Earnings Beat Forecasts: The computer company said that revenue saw strong gains in every unit except consumer products.

    An Unsealed Lawsuit Indicates Dell Hid Faults of Computers: A court case against the computer maker was unsealed, indicating that customers were sold defective equipment and the criteria the company used for fixing the problems.

  89. 89
    Corner Stone says:

    @Bob L:

    The utterly plastic nature of its philosophy that allows it be twisted and contort into what ever the self declared libertarians wants at the time. It’s really nothing more than a political exercise in the True Scotsman fallacy – when ever Libertarians fail in practice the rest of the Libertarians simply denounce them as no True Libertarians and smugly talk about the coming utopia when their ideas are truly enacted.

    You know, it’s funny you should mention that. Kinda reminds me of something…

    Conservatism is “formless” like water: it takes the shape of its conditions, but always remains the same. This is why Russell Kirk calls conservatism the “negation of ideology” in The Politics of Prudence. It is precisely the formlessness of conservatism which gives it its vitality. Left alone, the spirit of conservatism is essentially what T.S. Eliot calls the “stillness between two waves of the sea” in “Little Gidding” of his Four Quartets. Conservatism is both like water and the stillness between the waves—the waves are not the water acting, but being acted upon; stillness is the default state of conservatism

  90. 90
    geg6 says:

    @Brachiator:

    I remember getting into a huge argument in a bar with some dimwit libertarian who kept screaming at me with spittle-flecked vehemence that the evidence that libertarian ideas WORK was that very “Celtic Tiger.”

    I hope I run into that asshole some day soon. Every time he opens his mouth, even if it’s just to take a sip of beer, I’m going to say “Celtic Tiger” and then laugh my ass off.

    Edited to add: Of course, understand that this guy is a “safety consultant” for BP who I know for a fact was on the Deepwater Horizon about a year ago doing his “consulting.” Maybe I’ll alternate saying “Celtic Tiger” with “Deepwater Horizon.” I’m sure he’ll see the humor.

  91. 91
    Corner Stone says:

    @Brachiator:

    An Unsealed Lawsuit Indicates Dell Hid Faults of Computers: A court case against the computer maker was unsealed, indicating that customers were sold defective equipment and the criteria the company used for fixing the problems.

    What’s even funnier about that lawsuit is that the law firm that defended Dell used Dell computers. And the computers fizzled. And Dell refused to admit there was a problem or fix the law firm’s computers for a long period of time.

  92. 92
    Comrade Kevin says:

    @ChrisS:

    You know, real libertarianism has never even been tried!

    It’s amazing how often those “libertarians” demonstrate just how similar to hard-core communists they really are.

  93. 93
    chopper says:

    @eemom:

    The anti-libertarians of BJ are like the guy at the rally with the “Obama Seekrit Commie Mooslem Negroid” sign.

    i’m LOLing. i clicked that link not knowing i was asking to get slapped between the eyes with some cask-strength stupid.

  94. 94
    BGinCHI says:

    @geg6: I’m sure someone has said this before, but let’s imagine the capitalist system to be an automobile. The market and all of free enterprise is the engine; without it you go nowhere and it’s what makes all the noise and gets the attention; it can be made more efficient and more powerful and so on. Government is the brakes. You can make sure they work properly but there isn’t much you can do to make them sound cool, or look sexy or perform in any way other than the simple stopping they provide. But without them you fucking crash and die and smash the whole thing.

    That’s why Libertarian ideas are simplistic.

  95. 95
    gil mann says:

    Yeah, about that Dolphin Kazoo post.

    Jon and Steven will be second rate critics so long as they keep poking fun at bumbling individual capitalists and ignore the underlying systemic problems. The accumulation of wealth at the top skews the balance of power and disables democracy. The only way to rebalance the power is to take the money away from the capitalists and return it to the people producing the wealth.

    Here’s the thing about socialists: they make a lot of excellent points about production, but I’m not sure they’d make very good producers.

  96. 96
    shortstop says:

    I could use some late-afternoon caffeine. If we actually had an ombudsperson here, the Coke machine wouldn’t always be broken. Doug, I’m looking at you.

  97. 97
    MattR says:

    @Corner Stone:

    What’s even funnier about that lawsuit is that the law firm that defended Dell used Dell computers. And the computers fizzled. And Dell refused to admit there was a problem or fix the law firm’s computers for a long period of time.

    That is truly fantastic. I am glad to see karma is still alive and kicking.

  98. 98
    morzer says:

    I have heard wicked rumors that ED Kain is really Andrew Alexander under an ingenious pseudonym and a burnt orange mohawk, but that can’t be true, can it?

  99. 99
    Cheryl from Maryland says:

    @debbie: Hurray. To quote Michael Chabon from a Simpsons episode, “Your nose needs correcting Franzen!”

  100. 100
    Brachiator says:

    @geg6:

    I hope I run into that asshole some day soon. Every time he opens his mouth, even if it’s just to take a sip of beer, I’m going to say “Celtic Tiger” and then laugh my ass off. Glad to be of assistance.

    But I am fully in agreement with you that libertarians don’t understand how the real world works. They never let reality or history interfere with their philosophical reveries. Worse, they never go back and re-examine their assumptions or consider evidence that might contradict their beliefs.

    By the way, one of my favorite myths to debunk is the fallacy that small government is always better, less corrupt, etc than “big government” (and how “big” is big?).

    Especially in American history, one can easily find examples of the worst cases of corruption and political influence in state and local machines. Out here in Southern California, we have the sad example of the City of Bell:

    In this city of fewer than 40,000 — 90 percent Latino, with an income well below the national average — the tiny political class took advantage of the residents’ lack of civic engagement to create a slop-filled public trough for elites while cutting services and laying off workers.
    __
    Thanks to the Los Angeles Times, the public learned that city manager Robert Rizzo was making nearly $800,000, or twice that of the president of the United States, while his deputy was paid $376,000. Police Chief Randy Adams was pulling in $457,000, 50 percent more than Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck. Since the exposé last week, they’ve all resigned.
    __
    The City Council (including the mayor), meanwhile, was quietly paying itself nearly $100,000 per year for what are part-time jobs….
    __
    To help pay the exorbitant salaries, in addition to cutting services and laying off workers, the city devised a cunning scheme to raise revenue. In its working-class neighborhoods, the parking rules in front of apartments and homes make Santa Monica’s seem inviting. Bell City Hall reaps big ticket revenues by restricting its residents from enjoying overnight visitors, and ticketing and towing when they do.

    And Bell is almost an oasis compared to the city of Vernon, a tiny city controlled by the same family for 85 years, which has fought of every attempt by local and state officials to deal with its endemic corruption.

  101. 101
    Anne Laurie says:

    @Comrade Kevin:
    __

    It’s amazing how often those “libertarians” demonstrate just how similar to hard-core communists they really are.

    Ladies and germs, I present to you… David Horowitz!

  102. 102
    Steeplejack says:

    __

    [. . .] we’re headed towards having ten teams in the baseball play-offs.

    Oh, hell to the no! That way lies madness the NHL or the NBA, where the regular season is used just to weed out the bottom 20 percent or so. Ugh.

    ETA: And with 10 teams in the playoffs, we’d probalby be having the World Series run through Thanksgiving.

  103. 103
    Byfuglien (pronounced Bufflin) says:

    @The Grand Panjandrum: Hey, screw you. We made the playoffs twice last decade…

  104. 104
    Ash Can says:

    @freelancer:

    Why does he think that every single one of your critique’s of Glib, thoughtless, unironic, and unexamined libertarianism applies to HIM?

    To libertarians, everything is all about them.

  105. 105

    @Comrade Kevin:

    It’s amazing how often those “libertarians” demonstrate just how similar to hard-core communists they really are.

    Have you ever read Eric Hoffer’s The True Believer. It’s a brilliant examination of this phenomenon.

  106. 106
    gil mann says:

    #29 | E.D. Kain | November 19th, 2010 at 6:06 pm
    So ‘ombudsman’ is not the word I was looking for. I’d say ‘in-house critic’ is more like it.

    I always thought you guys were too hard on Kain. I was way off.

  107. 107
    Brighton says:

    Thank you all for the record number of hits on Dolphin Kazoo today. And thanks for the link, DougJ.
    I’ll try to write worthwhile posts as often as possible.
    Here’s today’s post on marijuana law reform.

  108. 108
    Stacy says:

    I’m starting to get a little embarrassed for Balko. Maybe I’m a bit biased as a regular lurker on BJ, but I’m a regular lurker on the Agitator as well. It just seems every time he’s pointed out some critique of the blog he’s been off, this is no exception. How is calling out a self-identified libertarian blogger for wanting to embrace the surveillance system some sort of hackery? He’s not making any sense at all. Sanchez actually justifies his own argument in the lamest way possible:

    People in my neighborhood are afraid because there have been so many break-ins and muggings around here recently. I’d kind of like the people responsible to be caught. Sorry if that offends you.

    So it’s not like he has some “thoughtful” article about his struggles with the desire to do it, which I would understand – he actually wants to do it.

    And in my opinion, Balko threw away the “mature” card in his first post slamming BJ, in where I offered up an civil explanation as to why fans like myself were upset with Reason, and he ignored it completely in favor of some flame bait so he could rip on BJ some more. Physician, heal thyself.

    There is nothing “mature” about this blog “war”. Balko’s feelings are hurt because some people have the audacity to point out that Koch funds Reason, and the Tea Party, and it just so happens that Reason has gone against what they describe as core principles of libertarianism in order to slobber all over the Tea Party. Full stop. That’s Balko’s demon to deal with, not John’s, not Doug’s.

    /rant

    Back to lurking. Sorry, had to get it off my chest. Not even going to start on Kain’s future Reason prospects.

  109. 109
    LarsThorwald says:

    Come on, DougJ, you think you know pain?

    You think I made your life hell?

    Look around this dump.

    You’re just a tourist with a typewriter.

    I live here. Don’t you understand that?

    And you come into my home

    ..and you complain that I’m making too much noise.

  110. 110
    13th Generation says:

    FU Kain. Ombudsman my ass. I used to defend your right to exist around here. Not anymore.

  111. 111
    timb says:

    @debbie: whatever. Freedom is awesome

  112. 112
    timb says:

    @burnspbesq: I like this answer. I just don’t read ED; it’s not like he’s gonna convince anyone here, or anyone of us will convince him, or like he will espouse a theory that works in the real world, so what’s the point.

  113. 113
    Hawes says:

    I’ve enjoyed reading ED’s posts, because there’s fuck-all chance I’m headed to Reason. My computer can handle the occasional porn, but the disc would be irretrievably corrupted by Reason.

    I’ve never had a problem with him expressing his opinions here, and they have helped clarify what I believe.

    But that was a douche move.

  114. 114

    Hey. I am already the late-night doyenne, so whyfore I cannot be ombudsman? And, I’m disappointed in Kain. I thought he was better than that.

    @jl: Cole posted a pic of Tunchie on Tuesday. When I was gone. Like he always does. Bastard. And, he posted a pic of Rosie and Lily yesterday. Right before I came back.

    Baseball: Fuck no. The season is long enough as it is.

  115. 115
    BombIranForChrist says:

    @Hawes: I agree, it was a douche move. It was already an eye-roller for this guy to be invited on here, and now it’s just ridiculous. I sometimes get the feeling that Cole is just kind of bored with the blog and doesn’t really care that much anymore.

  116. 116
    mclaren says:

    The David Brooks column parody contest seems pointless. How could anyone tell the difference twixt a parody and the real thing?

  117. 117
    sparky says:

    interesting that the critiques of Hedges here don’t engage with what he is actually writing. one might be tempted to say that the response rather proves his point:

    The liberal class refuses to recognize the obvious because it does not want to lose its comfortable and often well-paid perch.

  118. 118
    AhabTRuler says:

    @sparky: I am a liberal, and I am neither particularly comfortable nor well-paid, and I still think that hedges can be a bit of a presumptive ass. That being said, I am not familiar with his latest work, but I did find War is the Force . . . to be somewhat lacking.

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