It’s money that matters

I never like those New Yorker cartoons where it’s the rich people sitting around looking old and stuffy with a caption like “I remember when you called me Big Poppa”, but reader F sent me this one today and it seemed incredibly apropos.

It’s funny in theory, just as it was funny in that (hoax) Joaquin Phoenix video where he confronted a heckler with “I got a million dollars in my bank account, what have you got bitch?”. But we are getting pretty fucking close to a world where it’s acceptable to end arguments with “I have more money than you”.

Here’s Boston sports radio host John Dennis berating a listener via twitter.

And as I’ve said before, a lot of the conservative project is to convince people that this kind of reasoning is valid. It starts with Bell Curve-style IQ determines wealth and is genetic, so you if you’re poor, you’re dumb, then moves into high eggheads don’t create jobs and deserve contempt, and reaches its apotheosis in Bobo’s theory that the greatness of the composure class transcends intellect and only manifests itself as a sweet, sweet primal scent.

It all points in one direction: we owe our Galtian overlords everything, even if all those overlords do is run a crappy news channel or field calls from sports fans.

181 replies
  1. 1
    agrippa says:

    There is a lot of truth in that.
    We have always had that philistine pov; but, it may become more open, it is hard for me to say.

  2. 2
    MikeJ says:

    Jesus Christ, what an asshole.

    Somehow the all purpose NYer caption seems more appropriate than ever.

  3. 3
    morzer says:

    Well, if we’ve reached the hoax video stage of dinner, I propose this for your avid attention (especially Asiangrrl..):

  4. 4
    Kryptik says:

    Libertarianism and modern GOP ideology is, when you get down to it, Economic Calvinism.

  5. 5
    LT says:

    I never like those New Yorker cartoons where it’s the rich people sitting around looking old and stuffy with a caption like “I remember when you called me Big Poppa”…

    What the fuck? Really – what the fucking fuck?

  6. 6
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @morzer: That just got emailed to a lot of people, let me tell you.

  7. 7
    morzer says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    *evil chuckle*

    Gonna be a lot of people buying a Clay Matthews jersey and a bottle of scotch….

  8. 8
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @morzer: It is not as funny as that one, but few things are.

  9. 9
    freelancer says:

    This thread would be lacking without Mr. Show’s “More money means I’m better than you” skit.

    “I’m better than Van Gogh, who died poor.”
    “And I’m better than YOU, Braniac!”

  10. 10
    Yikes says:

    In a place like Texas, which has a LOT of rich folks, it’ll be interesting to see the full extent of the separation of the 1% from everybody else.

    In that most GOP of states (massive House and Senate majorities, all constitutional officers), they are on a jag to eviscerate government.

    So we’ll soon enough see what actual US feudalism looks like. I’ll probably have to visit a few times a year since my dad is in the top 5% and won’t outlive his nest-egg (well, DJI-NASDAQ willing), I’ll be visiting the gated senior community, seeing the peons serve him his cut up plates of food.

    Tragic for the bottom 70%, and a ratfucking nest of competition for the next 25%, and then the 4% who pretend, and the 1% who will be the feudal lords.

  11. 11
    MonkeyBoy says:

    It’s Prosperity Theology in action – God rewards those he favors with wealth and wealth is a sign of goodness because God saw that you were good enough to reward.

    People used to believe in trial by combat – let two guys fight to the death and God would have the most morally good person win. Somehow this notion fell out of favor among fat rich people.

  12. 12
    morzer says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    True, but it’s a worthy comrade in a good cause.

  13. 13
    catatonia says:

    Got a great big house on the hill here
    Great big blond wife inside it
    Great big pool in my backyard
    ‘Nother great big pool beside it

  14. 14
    harokin says:

    I think that New Yorker cartoon ripped off a Ziggy.

  15. 15
    ItAintEazy says:


    As a disgruntled fan living just a river away from Michele Bachmann’s district, I have to say that’s awesome :)

  16. 16
    HyperIon says:

    DougJ wrote:

    It starts with Bell Curve-style IQ determines wealth

    It started long before The Bell Curve.

    Are you unfamiliar with the taunt “If you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich?” That one has been around since before WW2.

  17. 17
    DougJ DougJson says:


    That lacked the Burkean gravitas of the principled arguments I listed.

  18. 18
    morzer says:


    Only a river between you and Wacky Bachy? That’s a lot more proximity than I could tolerate. Does your residential area come with a health warning about toxic forces being unleashed nearby?

  19. 19
    freelancer says:


    Damned Putty and his bedsheets!

  20. 20
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    reminds me of the stories about Meg Whitman’s kids

    Overheard at Charter [eating club]
    Griff Harsh (Meg Whitman’s son) throws beer in Guy’s face.
    Guy: You can’t do that to people.
    Griff Harsh (points at himself): Billionaire.

    It’s also the Bush, and now Cheney, mentality. The Romney boys seem to fit the mold, too. Meghan McCain seems to really believe she got those book contracts et al because of her awesome blog. I have a feeling we’ll see some jaw-dropping stuff about the Palins in the next decade. Say what you want about the Kennedys, they took that From those to whom much is given seriously

  21. 21
    Cat Lady says:

    Hey DougJ DougJson how ’bout a h/t? It’s such a small small game thing. Also, too.

  22. 22
    morzer says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Meghan McCain.. the GOP’s intellectual answer to Lindsay Lohan.

  23. 23
    DougJ DougJson says:

    @Cat Lady:

    I did you one better, I linked to your comment.

  24. 24
  25. 25
    morzer says:

    @Angry Black Lady:

    I do what I can, in my humble way. I am looking forward to Asiangrrl’s reaction.

  26. 26
    Zifnab says:

    I’ve got a friend in sales. He makes way more money than a guy working from his living room with Sports Center playing the background should, and he’s really not making much for a sales guy.

    Now, he’s a very moderate, very intelligent, very reasonable guy. We get along just fine. But he’s well aware that the sales jobs are where the money is largely at. He knows he’s getting paid disproportionately more than his non-sales counterparts.

    But I can see a guy in his position getting it into his head that sales guys are the be-all and end-all of the economic system. And he’ll regularly tell me about all of his much more conservative coworkers.

    So I think a lot of this “Money makes the man” thing comes from the business world and the reality that a work + luck + time can equal vast fortunes, if you’re in the right business. You’ve got guys who get into business so deep that they completely lose perspective. I’m sympathetic to their views, because they’re talking from life experience and that’s not nothing. :-p

  27. 27
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Great post.

    I can say that even though I have more money than you.

  28. 28

    It’s all part of the GOP “One dollar, one vote” strategy.

  29. 29
    Superluminar says:

    I can’t wait for matoko_chan to weigh in on this one…

  30. 30
    El Cid says:

    Looks like somebody needs to tell Al Gore again that it snowed in every state this year! Where’s his damn ‘global warming’ now?

    New Figures Confirm That 2010 Was a Hot Year
    New figures issued on Thursday in Britain show that 2010 was the second-warmest year in the historical record. That comes on the heels of reports last week from two American agencies that 2010 was tied for the warmest year in the record books.
    All three sets of numbers come from scientific programs that conduct rigorous analysis of the surface temperature of the earth, using thermometers and other instruments distributed across the globe.
    Despite slight differences in the three reports, they all show pretty much the same thing: that the earth is warming, that most of the warmest years in the historical record since 1880 have come in the past decade or so and that 2010 was so warm it came close to setting the all-time record.

    Who needs your damn ‘rigorous’ measures and ‘thermometers’ and ‘observation’ when you’ve got surveys of Americans’ worries and a bunch of people like software engineers and amateur analysts to prove all these big-head failed propagandists wrong!

  31. 31
    Bill Murray says:

    @HyperIon: more like since before Christ

    In spite of his wisdom, Thales was a poor man. The inhabitants of Miletus ridiculed Thales for his philosophy and asked him what his wisdom is good for if it can’t pay the rent.

    “He was reproached for his poverty, which was supposed to show that philosophy is of no use. According to the story, he knew by his skills in the stars while it was yet winter that there would be a great harvest of olives in the coming year; so, having a little money, he gave deposits for the use of all olive-presses in Chios and Miletus, which he hired at a low price because no one bid against him. __

    When the harvest time came, and many were wanted all at once and of a sudden, he let them out at any rate which he pleased, and made a quantity of money. Thus he showed the world that philosophers can be rich if they like, but that their ambition is of another sort.” [from “Politics”, Aristotle]

    Of course all of this after the link was supposed toe block quoted

  32. 32
    Kitty says:

    Check this out, this is a response to my 18 yo nephew who’s in college and who’s finding his way in politics and favors a liberal philosphy from his GRANDFATHER who doesn’t. It’s a little creepy!

    When you get a job maybe your opinion of government control of your life may change. To date you have added nothing to society and have only taken what has been given. When you pay for your self by working and earning a living, maybe you won’t want to pay for someone else living off of you. Our country grew on the backs of entrepenruers who have made this country great, not on back of the government. Government only sucks the lifeblood of the people, doesn’t create any wealth.

  33. 33
    Cat Lady says:

    @DougJ DougJson:

    Whoa, so you did. Seeing that fucking prick John Dennis’ name gives me tunnel vision. One can’t see that name and not immediately think of this. Jeebus I fucking hate those guys. Give me Shaughnessy any day and twice on Sundays.

  34. 34
    El Cid says:

    @MonkeyBoy: Hey, don’t you be talkin’ bout Atlanta’s own Creflo Dollar!

  35. 35
    morzer says:


    Has anyone asked grandpops where roads, bridges and clean water come from?

  36. 36
    matoko_chan says:

    No, DougJ, high IQ doesn’t correlate with WEALTH.
    High IQ correlates with high SES…socio-economic status.
    thus poorly paid teachers and firefighters and professors and social workers might still have high socio-economic status….its not JUST economics.

    egad you cudlips are especially thick today.

  37. 37
    handy says:

    @El Cid:

    My fridge can make ice cubes and I got AC. How about THEM apples! So I have one thing to say to Algore: Bring it fat boy.

  38. 38
    morzer says:


    If you think social workers have high socio-economic status, you are in for a very severe shock once you get done with junior high.

  39. 39
    General Stuck says:

    It is blasphemous, well, not really, but certainly uncool to have a thread about money grubbing and not offer a link to this.

  40. 40
    Jager says:

    John Dennis used to be a good guy, then he and his partner Callaghan on WEEI, got very politcal, big supporters of Scott Brown. Stupid move for sports talkers. Now they are getting their asses kicked by all sports WBZ FM. A few more bad rating periods and he won’t be bragging about his 1040 and Entercom will probably deny his unemployent or fight him to the death for it!

  41. 41
    freelancer says:


    egad you cudlips are especially thick today

    It’s your humility and grace that keeps winning people over.

  42. 42
    Superluminar says:

    @El Cid
    that’s because them damn scienmatists ain’t thought about them Sun Spots of course. Goddamn commiemarxistkenyans who think they know stuff when i who knows nothin about climate can prove them all wrong ergo.

  43. 43
    morzer says:


    Matoko thinks being called a narcissistic solipsist is flattery because people are comparing her to a flower and the sun.

  44. 44
    kdaug says:

    Haven’t worked through the backthread yet, but is this really a pissing match about who worships Mammon more devoutly? Is this what we have become?

  45. 45
    dj spellchecka says:

    Randy Newman – It’s money that I love

  46. 46
    J says:

    @MonkeyBoy: Except George Soros, who is pure Satanic evil in their books

  47. 47
    WereBear says:

    It’s a shortcut to worth; Mammon worship.

    What saves us is that a life of wealth and leisure creates complete and utter assholes who flame out over cocaine and bad land deals.

    Was different in the times of kings. Why we got rid of kings.

  48. 48

    I once heard right-wing Boston sports host Lyndon “L.B.” Byers shut off a caller with – I swear to God I’m not making this up – “I sit in a studio and talk for a living. Have fun getting about 37 blisters at your job!”


  49. 49
    handy says:


    Sports talk guys seem to roll Wingnut. It’s something I’ve noticed for years. Tony Bruno, Mancow’s Disease, JT the Brick, Cowherd, etc.

    Somebody here made a point the other day how Joe Sixpack is bitter because Superstar Athlete X makes Y millions, but doesn’t bat an eye when the local team ownership extorts the taxpayers for many more millions to pay for that state of the art stadium no one with a barely livable wage can afford to pay a ticket to attend a game at, and completely ignores the fact that the leagues get fat multibillion contracts with TV networks. And that’s because the radio jocks don’t spin things that way at all.

    All of this is to say these screamers have a HUGE problem with the millionaires in their industry who actually create the value, and none with the billionaires who exploit their labor. So yeah, wingnuts–all of them.

  50. 50
    CA Doc says:

    I was lamenting on a similar theme on FB today and a friend quoted Ann Richards re:Shrub, which seems apropos:
    “He was born on third base but he thought he hit a triple”

  51. 51
    matoko_chan says:

    @morzer: actually shams is my muslim name, that i took when i reverted.
    in arabic it means, “the sun”.
    but it is actually for Shams al-Nahar, the Queen of the Slavegirls in the Arabian Nights.

    DougJ, you fucking old fossil, arent you tired of bitching about a 16 yearold book by a political “scientist” that no one reads anymore?
    move on already.
    bitch about the Minnesota Twins study or the “god gene complex” if you wanna burnish your bioluddite chops.

  52. 52
    morzer says:


    We agree that you’ve reverted, that’s for sure.

  53. 53
    freelancer says:


    Very good, Louis. Short, but pointless.

  54. 54
    morzer says:


    The really depressing thing is that the Matoko bot is too poorly engineered to appreciate wit or formulate an interesting response.

  55. 55
    Cat Lady says:

    @joe from Lowell: @Jager:

    The Sports Hub’s business model is to favorably compare to the angry old fat conservative white guy demo. I listen to Tony Mazz and Felger on evening drivetime, and they’re both definitely left leaning. They NEVER talk politics, but they’ve definitely let their feelings be known about being fine with gays, pot, etc. They’re threading the needle, and it’s working because they’re kicking ass in the ratings, thank FSM. Who do they think listen to their shows? I mean, they’re in Boston. Duh.

  56. 56
    Old Dan and Little Ann says:

    It’s a Volshcstein.

  57. 57
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Bill Murray: To defend Thales the whole story goes that he fell into a cesspool, or oil-storage pithos, or something, because he was too busy contemplating the stars as he walked to notice where he was putting his feet, and only went all entrepreneurial in response — to give the lie the stereotype, apparently existing even in the 7th c. BC — that professor-types have no real business sense. He was teased into wealth.

  58. 58
    THE says:

    Matoko, I thought this was a really good article in the UK Guardian that tries to explain some of the forces that caused the market to disadvantage US workers in the last few decades.

    I’m not saying this is a complete explanation by any means.
    I believe there is the whole bankster/crony-capitalism dimension that is a story in itself,
    but this is possibly a part of the story too.

  59. 59
    slag says:

    Personally, I think money is an extremely flawed metric for success, but being someone who likes to measure things, I’d like something specific to replace it with. A Conscientious Economy, if you will. Any suggestions?

    (Using do-gooding metrics like volunteer hours are ok, but they’re kind of limited in that they’re only quantity, not quality. I’ve been trying and failing to come up with something more substantive.)

  60. 60
    freelancer says:


    Eh, I wouldn’t mind the simple-minded childishness and nuance free simplicity of her opinions if she wasn’t so balls out arrogant about them.

    It’s the whole “You cattle don’t KNOW! I’ve read science fiction, and I KNOW.”

  61. 61
    handy says:


    Uh oh. You’ve responded to it. Hope you’re wearing your trench coat.

  62. 62
    morzer says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    The full story has him being teased by a saucy slave-girl as well.

  63. 63
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Jager: Based on my Mass. brothers, all three of them registered Democrats, Brown’s winning his Senate seat has more to do with his truck, and sports talk radio, than any deficiencies in Coakley’s campaign.

    They all talked incessantly about the truck, and they all listen to maybe 35 hr/wk of Boston sports talk.

  64. 64
    JAHILL10 says:

    I have always had the same question for these evangelicals who talk about how wealth means that God has recognized your essential goodness and is rewarding you: How do you get around the whole Jesus saying “It is easier for a camel to walk through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the gates of heaven” or the parable of the young rich man who thought Jesus was really cool until he told the young man to give away all his possessions to the poor and come live like a hippie? I am not a Christian but I would sure like Christians a whole lot more if they actually acted like freakin’ Christians.

  65. 65
    gnomedad says:

    If you buy into Galtian theology and don’t have money, you can explain it one of two ways: a) you’re a loser, or b) the libruls screwed you.

  66. 66
    freelancer says:


    The full story has him being teased by a saucy slave-girl fetus as well.


  67. 67
    schrodinger's cat says:

    @THE: Is American exceptionalism really all that unique? I mean inhabitants of most countries think, that their country is the bestest evah.

  68. 68
    handy says:


    Oh you didn’t hear? Jesus got nailed to a cross and died. He’s irrelevant. The guy you’re thinking of has a mansion with many rooms. How can he not favor the wealthy people?

  69. 69
    morzer says:


    There’s a word for people who read sci-fi and think they know everything….


    Doubtless Tokie will jump up on her couch and caterwaul a few more times before she finally realizes that people are laughing at her for a reason.

  70. 70
    matoko_chan says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    Is American exceptionalism really all that unique?

    It is unique in that we send missionaries with guns to fuck you up if you dont shut up and swallow the american exceptionalism cheese.

  71. 71
    TCG says:

    I was listening the local right wing shock jock in the morning a couple of weeks ago and the host flat out stated that people that make more Money than he did were obviously smarter than he was.

    But then again people that make less than him are probably smarter than he is as well.

  72. 72
    morzer says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    I’d say that Coakley also suffered from being from the wrong part of the state as well. Of course, she did run a spectacularly sucky campaign too.

  73. 73
    Cat Lady says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    His looks, his wife, his daughter, and he had great abs ads. Also.

    The other thing no one outside of the area knows or understands either is that the special election coincided with the resignation of the third consecutive Democratic Speaker of the House for blatant corruption, and the Democratic Senator Dianne Wilkerson caught stuffing tens of thousands of dollars of cash into her bra on video. The special election ended up being a protest vote against the status quo Democratic State House machine as much as, or maybe even more than, anything to do with Scott Brown, who had never been known for doing anything or saying anything in particular. Of course the national press didn’t get it either. Shocking, I know/

  74. 74
    freelancer says:


    There’s a word for people who read sci-fi and think they know everything….

    See also Randians. (And I don’t mean readers of James Randi. I love that guy.)

  75. 75
    matoko_chan says:

    @morzer: but im not a scientologist– ima muslimah.
    أشهد أن لا إله إلاَّ الله و أشهد أن محمد رسول الله

  76. 76
    matoko_chan says:

    @freelancer: i have never read Rand.
    i loathe her.
    fortunately in catholic girls school we didnt have to.
    just St. Augustine (blech!)

  77. 77
    THE says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    I mean inhabitants of most countries think, that their country is the bestest evah.

    Yes, but Americans are the only ones who were pretty much right.

    For the majority of the post-civil-war period up until, maybe 1980 or so the US gave a better standard of living to the majority of its citizens, in many ways, than any other country. At least measured by material consumption. Personal liberty, etc.

    Of course it didn’t apply to all Americans, there were underclasses. But the majority had good reasons to feel satisfied.

    Edit: BTW I am not an American

  78. 78
    brad says:

    In case no one has posted it yet, here’s Mr Show’s take on just this topic, .

  79. 79
    matoko_chan says:


    Hope you’re wearing your trench coat.

    So he can flash me?

  80. 80
    LGRooney says:

    It all points to one thing alright, they have never accepted America as it was designed. It was always just there for the taking.

  81. 81
    morzer says:


    Then I recall to you verse 19 of the 31st Sura:

    “And be moderate in thy pace, and lower thy voice; for the harshest of sounds without doubt is the braying of the ass.”

  82. 82
    brad says:

    Oops. freelancer beat me to it.

  83. 83
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Cat Lady: My three Mass brothers join a fourth, who moved out to Marin County and voted for the Gropenfuehrer, because ‘it would be so cool’.

    Democracy is a very flawed vessel.

  84. 84
    JAHILL10 says:

    I can understand the wealthy liking this sort of reasoning, after all it justifies their obscene consumption habits, but I really don’t get the middle classers who think this way. What do they think would happen if they paid no taxes, no unemployment insurance, no social security. If they paid absolutely nothing into the system, no moochers on them, then what? They’d automatically save for unemployment, retirement, health care in their declining years, the whole bit? Seriously? Or that with their productivity freed they too would turn that $45,000 a year into millions of dollars? No one thinks their “philosophy” through. They just accept a bunch of bromides because it helps justify their resentment that they aren’t and are never going to be millionaires.

  85. 85
    WereBear says:

    Who was it… I ran across it recently and now (+2 dark rum & root beer) I can’t remember…

    It’s easy to make a lot of money; if all you care about is making a lot of money.

    It always makes me think of Martha Stewart.

  86. 86
    THE says:


    So he can flash me?

    Don’t worry Handy I have known her for a very long time through several blog reincarnations.

  87. 87
    schrodinger's cat says:

    @WereBear: How is our handsome kitteh, Tristan?

  88. 88
    freelancer says:


    A meteorite falls from the sky, and bronze-age, illiterate, tribal wanderers consider it a touchstone of heaven. They derive authority from it and to this day Billions of people pray towards an extraterrestrial rock because of the mythos that superstitious, scientifically ignorant people ascribed to it.

    It’s all Scientology.

  89. 89
    apathy says:

    href=”#comment-2382611″>morzer: Battlefield Earth is to science fiction as Left Behind is to biblical scholarship. You do see more the Randian side a lot from people who have not read nearly enough Heinlein, but just enough to get the wrong idea.

  90. 90
    Jager says:

    @Cat Lady:

    When I left Boston in 2001 for So Cal…Dennis was the guy holding Callaghan back! I was back in the “Hub” during the special election, Scott Brown was live on EVERY show the day before the election. Callaghan starting feeling his oats when he went after the Judge who was married to Steve Mindich the owner of the Phoenix. I hope BZ FM flattens them for good. Glad to see 1200 “Rush Radio” is a loser for Clear Channel. I owned it and sold it to CC in 2000, actually the Venture guys and I did!

  91. 91

    @Cat Lady: The travesty that Dennis and Callahan has become is such a shame, because when they talk sports, they are the most knowledgeable, informed, insightful commentators on the radio.

    But then they bust into a hi-larious segment about some athlete, leavened with the ever-rich vein of humor “how black people talk.”

    I had it with them when the news of Sean Taylor’s shooting was reported – a man who was shot by people who broke into his suburban home to rob it when they thought it was empty, and who were completely unknown to him – and they spent a day and a half talking about how “these guys don’t leave behind their homies,” instead of “getting out of the hood.”

    Last straw. Thank God for the SportsHub.

  92. 92
    morzer says:


    Indeed.. but I think it’s pretty clear which side of the divide matoko falls on.

  93. 93
    matoko_chan says:

    @morzer: which side would that be? i think starship troopers sukks, both as a movie and a novella– conservatives cite that Heinlein alla time….. Card is teh only conservo scifi author i know of, and he basically writes YA shit.

    i especially love Morgan, Niven, Stephenson, Bear, Teppo, Gibson, Pournelle, Herbert (did u know he was muslim?), Wheedon, among others.
    and im a Mongoliad contributor.

  94. 94
    WereBear says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Oh, he’s Mr. Happy Cat:

    Home from the vets’.

    Poor little dude had a very hard time; we had the neutering done at the same vet who evaluated him after being found, fed him, and turned him over to us for fostering. We wanted to give back to her.

    But even though he was 3 weeks old when I picked him up, he must have recognized the smell of the place; by the time I set the parking brake, he had thrown up in his carrier and gotten very quiet.

    Poor little bean. He’s so happy to be home.

    Inseparable from his big brudder.

  95. 95
    Citizen_X says:

    @General Stuck: I see you, and raise you this.

    The original, and still the best.

  96. 96
    morzer says:


    Would you care to provide evidence that Herbert was a Muslim?

    Just askin’.

  97. 97
    Cat Lady says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Gropenfuehrer. LOL.

  98. 98
    Jager says:


    What Chris Rock say…”Shaq is rich, but the guy who writes his check is wealthy”

  99. 99
    WereBear says:

    @matoko_chan: Ahh. See, if you’d said:

    Sturgeon, Ellison, Tiptree, Bester, and LeGuin…

    You might be a different, happier, more fulfilled, person.

  100. 100
    Svensker says:


    Herbert (did u know he was muslim?),

    That is complete malarky.

  101. 101
    Svensker says:

    I figured the American Experiment was in serious doodoo when the money for 9/11 families was divvied up based on the earning power of the deceased.

  102. 102
    morzer says:


    David Brin, C.J. Cherryh….

  103. 103
    schrodinger's cat says:

    @WereBear: aawwww, what a sweetie!

  104. 104
    Cat Lady says:

    @joe from Lowell:

    Yeah. There was a great Celtics win during the championship year, and I tuned in to hear they’re take on it, but they were bashing Hillary Clinton and Callahan was quoting Ann Coulter. For me that was the moment it was ovah.

  105. 105
    morzer says:


    Scully: In short, Roky showed signs of being what is known as a fantasy-prone personality.
    Jose Chung: Agent Scully, you are so kind-hearted. He’s a nut!

    Now why should that come to mind, I wonder?

  106. 106
    tim serbo says:

    i read an interview some years ago with Peter Gomes, who was (is?) the boss chaplain, basically, at harvard, and he said (i’m paraphrasing, obv.) that greed and callousness and arrogance have been with us always, but it’s only since the Reagan era that they’ve been elevated in the general culture to virtues. thought there was a lot of sense to that.

    OT: stent number two is being implanted tomorrow morning at 7:00 (eek!–and no coffee beforehand). i have the option of having it done by a robot controlled by two surgeons wielding joysticks. mulling that one…

  107. 107
    morzer says:


    Scully: In short, Roky showed signs of being what is known as a fantasy-prone personality.
    Jose Chung: Agent Scully, you are so kind-hearted. He’s a nut!
    For some reason, your dialog with Matoko brought it to mind. I can’t think why.

  108. 108
    Jager says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    I lived in Boston for almost 30 years and the only guy I knew who owned a truck was my pal Stevie, he owned a plumbing company. Nobody drives trucks in Ma unless they need them for work. I know plenty of guys like your brothers, they are the guys who take off their shirts at Pats games, right? the colder the better.

  109. 109
    Svensker says:

    @tim serbo:

    Best of luck!

  110. 110
    WereBear says:

    @morzer: Too right!

    C M Kornbluth, Lester del Ray, Damon Knight & Kate Wilhelm.

  111. 111
    WereBear says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Thank you, he is a tremendous sweetheart; even at this age (four and a half months) he loves to be hugged & kissed.

    I think he is an Ocicat; which would explain him very well.

  112. 112
    MoonBatista says:

    @freelancer: Not to mention her winning way with words. The Hamilton cartoons in the New Yorker are usually incisive but generally not too funny. The one shown above is no exception.

    Charles Barsotti’s cute little dogs, however, are another story. You can have New Yorker cartoons by category emailed daily, assuming anyone would want to face that horror, even for free.

  113. 113
    tim serbo says:

    @Svensker: thanks, bud. once it’s in i can start exercising again. i’m psyched–the cardiologist is going to prescribe me a personal trainer, basically. and yes, i’m aware how undeservingly lucky i am to have a decent health plan.

  114. 114
    morzer says:


    I was going to say that LeGuin seems to be mostly known for Earthsea, but she’s really a tremendously good sci-fi writer, and ought to be better known for it, IMHO.

  115. 115
    tim serbo says:

    @MoonBatista: life would be poorer without Barsotti’s dogs. George Price’s dogs were also, um, priceless.

  116. 116
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Jager: Tons and tons of vanity trucks, where parking is not an issue. Plymouth, Rockland, Norwell. Putting your F-150 in a cul-de-sac isn’t like parallel parking the same rig on L Street.

  117. 117
    morzer says:

    @tim serbo:

    Good luck with your op. Where are you having done?

  118. 118
    Svensker says:


    I was going to say that LeGuin seems to be mostly known for Earthsea, but she’s really a tremendously good sci-fi writer, and ought to be better known for it, IMHO.

    She’s tremendous. Very thought provoking, even if you don’t agree with her. Left Hand of Darkness one of my all time faves.

  119. 119
    WereBear says:

    @morzer: Yes, it was very gutsy of her to write under a female name (her own) at the time… because look what happened with Tiptree.

  120. 120
    tim serbo says:

    @morzer: Columbia Presbyterian in upstate Manhattan. in the new Milstein heart center. Bill Clinton is a satisfied customer. i picked the right neighborhood to live in.

    and thanks for the good wishes. you have no idea how much all the kind words i’ve heard this week have done for my morale.

  121. 121
    MoonBatista says:

    @THE: So what could we name her love child by a right wing radio shock jock?

  122. 122
    Jager says:

    @tim serbo:

    A friend of mine’s brother had a heart transplant about ten days ago, my pal was at the hospital watching the Packers game with him. They both are huge, life long Packer’s fans. The cardiac care nurse came in and told them if they didn’t settle down she was shutting it off, apparently the heart monitor was edging towards the red line! He looks great, he’s home and he said the only thing that’s bothering him are the staples in his chest. Looks like a freaking zipper

    Good luck!

  123. 123
    morzer says:


    Yes, indeed! LHOD is wonderful. The Dispossessed is pretty darn good too. I wonder if we could get a Scifi/Fantasy bookclub together, as well as the Political Bookclub? I’d nominate LHOD for sure.

  124. 124
    morzer says:


    I thought Tiptree maintained her alias pretty much until her final years. Is there another story I missed?

  125. 125
    MoonBatista says:

    @tim serbo: Good stent insertion for you!

  126. 126
    tim serbo says:

    @Jager: that’s fantastic–plus he’s going to have at least one more exciting sunday. unlike me (sob!). plus plus, he doesn’t have to shop for a halloween costume ever again. wishing him a strong recovery. the rest of us, too, for that matter.

  127. 127
    Svensker says:


    The Dispossessed is pretty darn good too.

    Yeah, I’ve been meaning to re-read that one.

  128. 128
    Jager says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    I guess the “sand yankees” would be into pickups wouldn’t they? I lived in Cambridge and the Back Bay for most of my years there, although I did live in Nah-well for a long time before I got divorced, no F-150s around when I lived there, Volvos, Saabs and American wagons, mostly.

  129. 129
    tim serbo says:

    @MoonBatista: many thanks. i think i’m going to go for the robot–it’s part of a trial the heart center is participating in.

  130. 130
    300baud says:

    This is only hazily on topic, but I think that the project to give New Yorker cartoons literal captions is much funnier.

  131. 131

    “I got a million dollars in my bank account, what have you got bitch?”

    The chance to laugh in your face because you’re an ASSHOLE! =)

  132. 132
    morzer says:


    I have seen two “personal” trucks in Somerville, one belonging to my Republican landlord, the other belonging to a Hispanic family that used to live next door, and who played the most annoyingly loud music all the time. I am broadminded, but constant polka music seems a bit too much to me.

  133. 133
    WereBear says:

    @morzer: I was thinking of the infamous Silverberg editorial; wherein he explained all the reasons the brilliance of Tiptree pointed to an Y chromosome…

    He took the reveal in good humor, though. He wasn’t called “Silverbob” for nothing.

    Actually, she wrote, and was known, from 1974–77 as Raccoona Sheldon until her untimely, (but long-delayed,) suicide. This made enough ripples in the SFsphere, at the time, that I figured it was common knowledge.

    I had to read her biography (out a few years ago) only a few chapters at a time; it was so freakin’ sad.

  134. 134
    tim serbo says:

    @morzer: you’re in somerville? i miss saturday night in davis square.

    thunderball is starting on bbc america right now. tom jones is the man!

  135. 135
    Jager says:

    @tim serbo:

    He has been really sick for a couple of years, he hasn’t been able to exercise for the last year or so. He is ready to live again! Something I didn’t know is when you get to the top of the transplant list, they put you in the hospital early during the holiday season, Ray’s brother went right after Christmas. They start a special diet and drugs to get you ready..the reason, lots of traffic accidents and one of them might be your match. Ray and I were at the Laker’s game and he got the call in the 3rd 1/4 that his brother had a match, call came at 9pm, he had the transplant at 3am and they finished at 11 that morning. Poor bastard had to be reopened 3 days later because of leakage.

  136. 136
    Svensker says:


    I was thinking of the infamous Silverberg editorial; wherein he explained all the reasons the brilliance of Tiptree pointed to an Y chromosome…

    That’s really interesting. The hub and I both like Silverberg, but he likes him a lot more than I do because some of his stories just feel completely “off” when it comes to the female characters or the relationships between men and women.

  137. 137
    morzer says:

    @tim serbo:

    Tom Jones has a lovely voice, although his tan is a bit embarrassing these days. I used to have a nice compilation of his greatest hits, including Green Green Grass of Home and others. Did you ever hear him sing the opera Matador?

  138. 138
    tim serbo says:

    @Jager: i bet he’s ready to get out there and live. and it’s wonderful the new heart is working as it should. i already feel so much better than i did before my 12/22 heart attack, i can only imagine what a rush he must be feeling.

    re putting him in the hospital during the holidays, medical people are generally really good at that kind of cold-blooded calculation. makes them fun to talk to. bracing. and it’s good to know something worthwhile can come of the idiotic highway carnage.

  139. 139
    Jager says:


    I miss Johnny D’s, Redbones and the Irish Pub just off Davis Sq…shit I miss living in a real city! On the other hand it was in the high 70’s yesterday, 60’s today and we’re going to Santa Cruz this weekend…maybe the move is okay!

  140. 140
    WereBear says:

    @Svensker: I know what you mean; Robert Silverberg was born in 1935. I don’t think he got over it.

    He did some incredible work, though; the woman who donated her eggs and had hundreds of children she didn’t know; the man who was forced to relive his past as a psycho killer of women; he did try.

    But all the women (like Kornbluth) wrote under male pseudonyms until the late sixties; it was a really chauvinist culture, whether they admitted it, or not. That’s why James Tiptree Jr (I feel the Jr was a touch of genius) chose a male pen name at the time.

  141. 141
    morzer says:


    Your story of the editorial reminds me of the infamous Story of O, which is rather unpleasant sadomasochist porn about women submitting to cruel masters, attributed to the pseudonymous “Pauline Reage”. Reams of French critical and theoretical prose established that the author could not possibly be a woman, and that this was paradigmatic “masculine” writing (brutal, abusive, sexual not emotional etc etc), only for it to be revealed that the author was in fact one Mademoiselle Anne Desclos. Much academic embarrassment followed. She had in fact written it because her boyfriend and boss had said, in her presence, that women were unable to write erotic novels!

  142. 142
    Jager says:

    @tim serbo:

    As astonishing as a transplant is to most of us, Ray said the docs and nurses treat it like changing the fuel pump on your car…professional cool. My ex is a cardiac N/P, she says the biggest problem with many heart patients is they go right back to their old habits, mainly because they feel so damn good for the first time in years.

  143. 143
    morzer says:


    I am not sure why, but I’ve never found Silverberg convincing as a creator of credible people, whether male or female. To me he seems more a writer of ideas than narrative or character. In some ways, he reminds me of Samuel R. Delany, to bring up another name.

  144. 144
    tim serbo says:

    @Jager: somehow, i’d guess that your friend won’t be backsliding.

  145. 145
    WereBear says:

    @morzer: Bwahahaha!

    Nothing like throwing down the gauntlet when you are being smug.

  146. 146
    jwb says:

    @Yikes: Funny article in the paper today about the legislature. Apparently, many of the Republicans didn’t understand that cutting the state government would mean that many of the government institutions in their districts would also be cut.

  147. 147
    morzer says:


    Oddly enough, for me the best thing about Somerville is the library up on Prospect Hill. Also, the red-tailed hawks that one sees going about their hawkly business. Well, alright, I’ll throw in Market Basket for cheap fruit and veg.

  148. 148
    tim serbo says:

    @morzer: hells no. sounds like i’d better do some rooting around on iTunes. and yes, the tan is appalling. scary things happen when a sex symbol’s looks are gone. yes, robert plant, i’m looking at you! (last two records were pretty good, mind you).

  149. 149
    WereBear says:

    @morzer: Oh yeah. Delany. He’s detached from his own emotions, all right.

    Then you find out he was a tormented African American and homosexual writer with learning and dyslexic issues, and you go “No wonder.”

  150. 150
    morzer says:


    It’s quite funny, because for a while as a grad student I worked in the school library, and the Story of O was kept under lock and key as likely to corrupt the youth. I made use of my access privileges to take a peek, and was amazed at how damn boring it was. It was one long parade of “.. and then Sir Stephen picked up the whip/flogger/electric toaster and delivered some predictable words as O shivered and so on and so forth….”.

    Alright, I made the bit about the toaster up.

  151. 151
    morzer says:


    For me, when I encountered him in my youth, too much of Delany’s writing read like an academic thesis on how certain things would be the case if you put certain types of people into certain environments. There was a coldness and artificiality to it which left me feeling that the whole affair was somehow a bit futile.

    The Nazgul, on the other hand….

  152. 152
    WereBear says:

    @morzer: Movie probably worked better for most people; but then they didn’t have to use their imagination for that!

    I was stunned by how some people (based on the “Sell this house” series of tv shows) could not imagine their hutch in this dining room; really? You have no visual imagination? Is that why everything is beige? Really?

    There was a coldness and artificiality to it which left me feeling that the whole affair was somehow a bit futile.

    Yes, that’s what you get when science geeks were encouraged to try fiction; tab A and slot B kind of emotional introspection. That’s why women shook the whole thing up, and finally got credit for adding a whole dimension!

  153. 153
    Kuvasz says:

    Don’t forget, guns are a great equilizer.

  154. 154
    Jager says:


    I miss the tapas and the sangria at Dali, riding my bike on the Charles, my mooring in Marblehead (which I still own)sailing from Marblehead to Maine in September and I especially miss our condo on Marlborough St with the roof deck we shared with our great neighbors…shitty parking, but you can’t have everything can you? I still carry my Boston Public Library card, why, I have no idea!

  155. 155
    morzer says:


    Dali is still around. Good tapas, second-rate main courses. The exterior is still a psychedelic violet color. Where in Maine? I know and like Camden very much.

  156. 156
    Jager says:


    We would go as far north as SW Harbor, that was always our destination, depending on the mood and the weather we’d make various stops along the way. I like to sail offshore, so if the winds were right I’d do the trip in one long haul. We sailed to Halifax once just for the hell of it. That was back in the days of thinking about leaving for good on the boat. I’ve sailed Palm Beach to Bermuda to Boston, did the trip on a friend’s Nelson Marek 45, on the way to Bermuda, my pal and our buddy got seasick and I ended up doing a 20 hour watch..I fucking loved it, made me wish I was by myself! if you leave So Cal the next stop is Hawaii, going north or south from here is shit sailing. I hear the worst trip you can make on a sailboat in the US is San Francisco to Seattle, either way sucks.

  157. 157
    timb says:

    @morzer: does that mean Lohan is on my side? ‘Cause that’s not a team I want to belong to

  158. 158
    junebug says:

    Now this is the type of post I was talking about! I tried to find the comment I left that asked you for this type of post, but I couldn’t (I didn’t try so hard)but this is exactly what I was asking for.

    My work draws in money from international sources and the people who pay me also rent apartments, buy cars and furniture and eat in restaurants.

    My local political radio shock jock sits on his ass and yaps and makes way more money than I do. He belittles my profession and parodies my duly elected political representatives relentlessly.

    Where is the equity in that?

  159. 159
    ItAintEazy says:


    Unfortunately, my district has to deal with that enduring pile of hog waste known as John Kline :(

  160. 160
    matoko_chan says:

    @WereBear: but i am different, happy and fullfilled.
    it just pisses me off to come here and see BJ morphed into a lowrent Atlamtic circle jerk.
    i worry that what is happening to Cole will happen to me.

    morzer, a lot of ppl think Herbert reverted– the intense use of arabic, the Kwisatch Haderach was based on the Prophet, the Bene Gesserit breeding program on the Line of the Imam.
    you shud reread Dune.

  161. 161
    matoko_chan says:

    @morzer: jeezus. Tom Jones?
    no wonder you’re so pissy.
    try some qemists.
    Dem Na Like Me should be my themesong here.

  162. 162
    morzer says:


    Converted, not reverted. And no-one thinks Herbert was a Muslim except you. Not that anyone imagines you have the mental capacity to discuss anything more complex than a Tootsie roll.

  163. 163
    Robert Rubin says:

    I’m richer than God!
    In my mansion on Cape Cod,
    I enjoy my wealth
    and drink to the health
    of DC Consensus which
    made me so very rich!

  164. 164
    Robert Rubin says:

    I’m richer than you!
    If I live ’til ninety-two,
    I’ll stay rich because
    There’s no Santa Claus
    Who can take the wealth from me
    That I stole from all of ye!

  165. 165
    matoko_chan says:

    @morzer: we say reverted, because everyone is born muslim. im charmed by how much that bugs people….also too…did you know we muslims dont give a shit if xians wanna believe in the jesusgodhead? they are all the people of the book.
    its simple set theory.
    muslim god > christian god > jewish god.
    xians say all jews are christians– jews disagree.
    muslims say all jews and christians are muslims– jews and xians disagree.
    the religion that is the newest subsumes the old religions and their constituents.
    evo theory of culture 101.
    we do care quite a lot that xians wanna MAKE us believe in the jesusgodhead too.
    fortunately, al-Islam is EGT immune to xian proselytization in situ. See Iraq, A-stan, Yemen, Lebanon, Turkey, etc. etc.
    also too….surat ikhlas.

    Say: He is Allah, the One and Only! Allah, the Eternal, Absolute;
    He begetteth not nor is He begotten.
    And there is none like unto Him.

    we simply cannot believe in the jesusgodhead.
    who can say?

  166. 166
    tworivers says:


    yeah, Market Basket in Union Sq. is the shit! I have to gear myself up to shop there (in order to deal with the crowds, insanity, narrow aisles), but the prices make the ordeal worth it.

    Two coping mechanisms I’ve developed:

    Putting my list in store order (you don’t want to have to backtrack in that place if you can at all avoid it).

    Pretending that getting around the store is a video game (ala Frogger)

  167. 167
    justinb says:

    Ignore, comment for mobile version.

  168. 168
    tworivers says:


    Callahan has been a right-wing creep/ignormaus for as long as I’ve listened (since 2004 or thereabouts). It got to the point where they were injecting politics into their sports radio show so often that i couldn’t listen to them anymore. All the unchallenged ignorance and Callhan’s smug-voiced regurgitation of far-right talking points got to be too much to bear.

    Am glad to hear a competitor’s sports show is wiping the floor with their asses. I’ll have to check it out. I would love to see Dennis and Callahan lose their drive time slot

  169. 169
    THE says:

    I’m not a Christian either, matoko, I don’t believe in any of the “Abrahamic” religions.
    At one time I used to find the word “revert” offensive.
    Now I just consider it to be anachronistic.
    e.g. I know monotheism to be a very late invention.

    Also, so much reverence for books is almost incomprehensible to me.
    But I do understand that there must have been a time when writing was a recent invention, and very rare and exotic;
    and it must have seemed very magical to earlier civilizations – containing secret knowledge – readable only to the initiated.

    Printing has made books so commonplace, that no one could easily reverence a modern book that way,
    especially since we have developed traditions of critical literary analysis now.
    And near-universal literacy has taken away the mystique.

  170. 170
    Svensker says:


    morzer, a lot of ppl think Herbert reverted—the intense use of arabic, the Kwisatch Haderach was based on the Prophet, the Bene Gesserit breeding program on the Line of the Imam.

    He visited the area once. I knew him. He was not a Muslim.

  171. 171
    matoko_chan says:

    @Svensker: how would you know?
    did you ax him?
    all one has to do is say the shahada to become one of the Ummah.

  172. 172
    THE says:

    As an alternative to Tom Jones or the Qemist, I suggest we compromise with another Muslim “revert”:
    Yusuf Islam.

    Je préfère être détestée
    pour ce que je suis
    que d’être aimée
    pour ce que je ne suis pas

    Georges Simenon

  173. 173
    MonkeyBoy says:


    Except George Soros, who is pure Satanic evil in their books

    You forgot that Soros is Jewish. The Christian God rewards good Christians with wealth. As you say, wealthy Jews are given their wealth by the Devil.

  174. 174
    Surly Duff says:


    I’m sympathetic to their views, because they’re talking from life experience and that’s not nothing.

    No, it is simply an experience that they misconstrue into believing it is a life experience that is based on a sound philosophy rather than, luck, good fortune or being in the right place at the right time. And it makes them myopic jackasses.

  175. 175
    not a "liberal" says:


    Yglesias 2002
    “After the last depressing news from the Middle East I think we have to start asking just how inhumane it would be for Israel to just expel the Palestinians from the occupied terroritories. The result would probably be out-and-out war with the neighboring Arab states, but Israel could win that.
    All forced population transfers are humanitarian disasters, of course, but so is the current situation. It’s not like there’s not any room in the whole Arab world for all these Palestinian Arabs to go live in, it’s just that the other Arab leaders don’t want to cooperate.”

    Sam Rosenfeld on Yglesias:
    “And for the record (don’t post this), Yglesias as an individual has a great, self-aware sense of humor and is much more starkly honest (if also unapologetic) about his own elitism than most liberals. Take him out for a beer and I think you’d find that.”

    Brad DeLong
    “you have to either live in the countryside or live in the city and be really rich to say that rubber tomatoes suck. For those humans who live in the city and are not really rich, rubber tomatoes provide a welcome and tasty and affordable simulacrum of the tomato-eating experience.”

  176. 176
    Svensker says:


    Making stuff up about people because of your own likes and dislikes is wrong. It is called lying. And bearing false witness.

  177. 177
    Paul in KY says:

    @matoko_chan: You need to read some Phillip Jose Farmer & Ursula K. LeGuin & Chris Rowley.

  178. 178
    Paul in KY says:

    @morzer: I’ve never been able to get thru a Delaney book. Too weird for me.

  179. 179
    Comrade Kevin says:

    This old clip from They Live seems appropriate: THIS IS YOUR GOD.

  180. 180
  181. 181
    uh... says:

    Wait a minute. Card is the only conservative SF author you know, but you love Jerry Pournelle?

Comments are closed.