Cheeseburger in Paradise

Like many of you, I think the reason there is so much distance between the Ryan/GOP plan to dismantle Medicare and Medicaid and send that money to Charlie Sheen and the Obama plan is because they are simply incompatible viewpoints. They are quite simply competing visions in which there can be very little common ground.

But I am a lowly blogger, and as such, have a jaundiced view of things. Far more beautiful minds, such as David Brooks at the NY Times, have other reasons for the distance between the two men and their visions for America:

President Obama and Paul Ryan are two of the smartest, most admirable and most genial men in Washington. It is sad, although not strange, that in today’s Washington they have never had a serious private conversation. The president has never invited Ryan over even for lunch.

And, should they decide on a neutral location, I suppose they could always choose the Applebee’s Salad Bar.

87 replies
  1. 1
    FFrank says:

    I’m not sure if he’s a real murrican…

    President Obama slips up and reveals details on budget talks

    Still a damn good president.

  2. 2
    dr. bloor says:

    Elitist that he is, I would imagine the President prefers dining with companions that are smarter than their tossed baby greens.

  3. 3
    danimal says:

    I don’t care about whether they meet for lunch or a midnight tryst or never cross each other’s path for the rest of their lives. Their only importance is in the laws that they pass. Ryan’s proposal has evil effects on millions of poor, helpless and elderly citizens. His dining schedule is the least of my concerns.

  4. 4
    eemom says:

    But I am a lowly blogger,

    oh suuuuure. A “lowly blogger” who was quoted by Paul Fucking Krugman today in the New York Fucking Times. False modesty much?

  5. 5
    danimal says:

    I don’t care about whether they meet for lunch or a midnight tryst or never cross each others’ path for the rest of their lives. Their only importance is in the laws that they pass. Ryan’s proposal has evil effects on millions of poor, helpless and elderly citizens. His dining schedule is the least of my concerns.

  6. 6
    sukabi says:

    you want to change the conversation? the first thing you have to do is change the messenger…

    Brooks is a class-warrior, beltway “Common Wisdom” propaganda machine… and because he gets paid for this, he will NEVER change his tune…

    way past time to figure out a way to either totally discredit these assholes, or to find a way around them.

  7. 7
    patrick II says:

    Brooks:

    As a result, both men are misinformed about the other, and both have developed a cold contempt for the other’s position. Obama believes Ryan wants to take America back to what he sees as the savage capitalism of the 1920s …

    How is that being misinformed about Ryan’s position?

  8. 8
    Shoemaker-Levy 9 says:

    The president has never invited Ryan over even for lunch.

    He should invite Ryan over for beer. As Obama sips his raspberry wheat microbrew and Ryan chugs six Old Milwaukees they can solve this budget thing.

  9. 9
    dmsilev says:

    @patrick II: It’s deeply misinformed. Ryan wants to go back to the 1890s.

    dms

  10. 10
    WereBear says:

    Perhaps we can “all get along” if one side wasn’t trying to kill the other, hmmmm?

  11. 11
    Stooleo says:

    We need to re-introduce the tern “Voodoo Economics” back into the political discourse. Supply side economics was a gimmick in the 80’s and it is a gimmick today. Unfortunately, our current crop of Republicans believe it as God’s honest truth. Fire up the re-education camps.

  12. 12

    Well I just knew the Ryan plan had to be Obama’s fault somehow! Thank you David Brooks for showing us how!

  13. 13
    Uloborus says:

    It’s quotes like that which make me so fond of Bennen’s ‘Cult Of The Savvy’ interpretation of our media. Both sides are completely equal, policy is unimportant, and it’s all a game. Some journalists want to see it played Marquis of Queensbury, some want to see it played Marquis de Sade. Any other view of politics means you’re just not smart enough to be a Serious Person.

  14. 14
    rikryah says:

    lmao….

    oh, bad POTUS..not inviting an assclown to lunch

  15. 15
    Chinn Romney says:

    What’s the point? They are too far apart. Mr Ryan recognizes soy growing in the field, and Mr Obama may or may not consider soy a form of prisoner torture, to be mildly condemned at some unspecified later date, maybe.

  16. 16
    danimal says:

    @FFrank: Love that audio. I wonder if it was an accident or an “accident” that he was caught on tape.

  17. 17
    p.a. says:

    If only Sherman had invited Nathan Bedford Forrest over for some coffee and hard tack.

  18. 18
    j low says:

    @FFrank: I don’t think that was an accident.

  19. 19
    Violet says:

    OT – The “Birther bill” is on Jan Brewer’s desk, waiting for her signature.

  20. 20
    piratedan says:

    ohhhh I dunno, I don’t have much of a problem with the Commander in Chief treating these folks as “unserious” or even with a modicum of disdain. It’s not as if the Republicans are really serious about governance. they’re busy playing in their ideological sandbox, taking directives from their Galtian overlords to continue to allow them to do whatever is necessary to allow them to keep as much as their money as possible and in return, they’ll get some corporate board placements when they retire and a gold club membership somewhere.

    If these “fiscal conservatives’ were actually in the game, like debating cuts to the military, talking about a change in foreign policy (do we like dictatorships or actual democracies or republics) or even going for the brass ring and attempting to control the rest of the world by means militarily, culturally or financially, then we could have luncheons and perhaps compare notes. As it is, they’re more concerned about the rights of the fetus, but only as a means to control half of the citizenry and keep them distracted from their hands on the collective wallets and pocketbooks of America.

  21. 21
    Countme In says:

    Vermin murderous parasite Paul Ryan wants me to pay for lunch?

    Dagny Taggert would skewer Eddie Muenster on a gleaming Objectivist dildo created with Orc-mined alloys if she found out that theft.

    What should happen to murderous subhuman Republicans who threaten to murder tens of millions of Americans?

    Not lunch.

  22. 22
    j low says:

    also too. 2.47 people in the United States attempted suicide while the President was “accidently” detailing Republican jackassery during budget negotiations.

  23. 23
    patrick II says:

    @danimal:
    I’m voting “accident”.

  24. 24
    biff diggerence says:

    What did Taiibi write recently?

    Jerks like Ryan sleep in their ties and dress hosiery when performing their bi-monthly duties with the wife.

    He just can’t be that innarresting.

  25. 25
    aimai says:

    @patrick II:

    Patrick is correct. What would knowing Ryan personally add to actually reading and understanding the plan? Surely the plan speaks for itself.

    Brooks is really a sickening person. Also, IIRC when Obama went to the Republican Caucus and kicked them in the face sans teleprompter lo these many months ago he expressly praised Ryan for his thoughtful work and indicated that they had met, personally, at some point. Plus he signed autographs for all the mob howling for his blood so I think he’s done enough on the politesse front.

    aimai

  26. 26
    martha says:

    @patrick II: I’m voting “accident” as in “ooops, I accidently ate that entire pint of Cherry Garcia last night…”

    Oh darn. ::yummy::

  27. 27
    El Cid says:

    Even for a pseudo-intellectual conservative-ass-kissing middlebrow hack, he’s a fucking weirdo.

    Hopefully, though, he’ll be invited on more TV and radio shows ’cause he talks all nice and stuff.

  28. 28

    @eemom: Holy crap!! I didn’t read it last night. Cole has hit the big time!! ;-)

  29. 29
    comrade scott's agenda of rage says:

    David Brooks is just one more reason never to give the NYT a dime of my money.

  30. 30
    JCT says:

    @aimai: Strong agree. Brooks gives new meaning to the term intellectually disingenuous — just another privileged schmuck trying to whack the poor and disadvantaged when he thinks no one is looking (or is fooled by his “thoughtful” nay, SERIOUS prose.)

    Pathetic.

  31. 31
    biff diggerence says:

    Here’s something else.

    Main Line Fops like Brooks aren’t that innaresting either.

    I’d rather eat alone.

  32. 32
    georgia pig says:

    Like the president has to do lunch with every congressperson that has a half-baked “plan.” The president does lunch with the House and Senate leadership, with heads of state or with groups in preplanned events that have some particular purpose larger than massaging someone’s ego. But Brooks thinks that just because he thinks Ryan is relevant, the president should be kissing his ass. Brooks treats national politics like its a dinner party he’s throwing at his house. He’s the heir of Sally Quinn.

  33. 33
    maya says:

    Speaking of food, shouldn’t Ryan’s budget be properly called the Let Them Eat Cake, plan?

  34. 34
    Jay C says:

    David Brooks really should have titled this Op-Ed the “David Broder Memorial Lecture”; for a lamer, self-blinkered “why can’t we get some bipartisanship” whine I have seldom seen in print. Even on the New York Times‘ Op-Ed page!

    Even for Brooks, this is an amazingly stupid piece: not merely for the simpleminded “he believes/he doesn’t believe” crap (how do you KNOW that, Mr. Brooks? Pres. Obama and Rep. Ryan fill out questionnaires for you?) – cleverly crafted, I notice, to put the President on the “negative”, i.e. “wrong” side – or the bland acceptance of the benificence of “markets” as a catchall fallback position for the proposed ravages of Ryanism; never mind the potential abuses.

    But, of course, David Brooks deserves his column space; he is, after all, a Serious Thinker: devoting that magnificent brain of his to the Great Serious Issue Of Our Time: “Why can’t we all get along“??

  35. 35
    biff diggerence says:

    @maya

    I’d substitute Eat Shit and Die Plan.

  36. 36
    Stillwater says:

    The president has never invited Ryan over even for lunch.

    Not even for a lil ole lunch? Never? How long has the WH been covering up this scandal ?

  37. 37
    Joel says:

    Just for the record, DougJ is much better with the song-themed post titles.

  38. 38
    El Cid says:

    Even for a pseudo-intellectual conservative-a**-kissing middlebrow hack, he’s a f***ing weirdo.

    Hopefully, though, he’ll be invited on more TV and radio shows ‘cause he talks all nice and stuff.

    [Repeated for moderation escape.]

  39. 39
    Sharl says:

    Here is Sasha Issenberg’s 2006 “Boo-boos in Paradise” in phillymag, discussing Bobo and his gaps in knowledge regarding chain restaurants for reg’lur folk. {Via commenter in this SN post}

  40. 40
    Tsulagi says:

    the Ryan/GOP plan to dismantle Medicare and Medicaid

    Yeah, it’s pretty much the Slow Death by Voucher plan. Granny and grandpa’s future voucher amounts determined/adjusted by how much very serious Rs want to transfer to real Americans that matter like the Koch brothers. Trickle down health care.

  41. 41
    Gregory says:

    Brooks is still trying to promote the notion — and really, this is his main job — that the Republicans are acting in good faith out of a sincere concern for what’s good for America.

    He’s also trying to counteract the accurate public perception that the Republicans are far, far more partisan than Obama.

    Nice try, Brooksie, but no sale.

  42. 42

    Gastritis ate Make Lynas’ calculator. Read the correction on his Los Angeles Times op-ed. I think he forgot to carry the 1.

  43. 43
    slag says:

    @dr. bloor:

    Elitist that he is, I would imagine the President prefers dining with companions that are smarter than their tossed baby greens.

    See…that’s because, unlike Brooks, you bother to check out what’s beneath the dressing.

  44. 44
    dmsilev says:

    OT: Nancy Pelosi and her team come very close to making the GOP look even more ridiculous and extreme:

    What was supposed to be a routine vote in the House — to knock down an amendment authored by conservative Republicans — turned into pandemonium on the House floor Friday, as Democrats tried to jam the plan through, and hang it around the GOP’s necks.

  45. 45
    joeyess says:

    And, should they decide on a neutral location, I suppose they could always choose the Applebee’s Salad Bar.

    Cole, you’re a bitter, bitter man. You simply can’t let a well heeled, disconnected, village resident live down his one rhetorical mistake, can you?

  46. 46
    DonkeyKong says:

    David Brooks will always be the Applebee’s salad bar sneezeguard against “incivility” to me. (draws a heart in the air with fingers.)

  47. 47
    Sentient Puddle says:

    Slightly off topic, but this is pretty hilarious:

    In an attempt to highlight deep divides in the Republican caucus. Dems switched their votes — from “no” to “present.”
    __
    Panic ensued. In the House, legislation passes by a simple majority of members voting. The Dems took themselves out of the equation, leaving Republicans to decide whether the House should adopt the more-conservative RSC budget instead of the one authored by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan.

    In case you’re wondering, the RSC budget is the Ryan budget set to 11.

  48. 48
    esq141 says:

    I think that there is a form of dementia that creeps up on people who are so insulated from insurance premium hikes, the vagaries of being self-employed or just about anything that the 90% of us who aren’t independently wealthy have to deal with on a daily basis that precludes them from understanding that having an extreme idealogical difference is going to make it tough to even get through a salad course at Applebee’s without a few uncomfortable comments.

  49. 49
    YellowDog says:

    If only Obama would emulate his betters. You meet at the club for lunch and have a serious conversation about how the world really works. Obama would see that smart and courageous people–the people who produce and therefore matter–will coalesce around the Ryan plan. GFY Bobo.

  50. 50
    Loneoak says:

    @dmsilev:

    NANCY SMASH!

    What an awesome prank they just pulled.

  51. 51
  52. 52
    Served says:

    @Sentient Puddle: Glad to see the Ryan plan has embiggened the Democrats. That’s 119 campaign ads right there, even if the districts are safe R strongholds.

  53. 53
    Mike in NC says:

    The president has never invited Ryan over even for lunch.

    The White House should mail Ryan a shit sandwich with mayo on week-old bread. Just to get his attention.

  54. 54
    Svensker says:

    @dmsilev:

    OT: Nancy Pelosi and her team come very close to making the GOP look even more ridiculous and extreme:

    And to think I used to think Nancy Smash was a dull girl. Heh, indeedy!

  55. 55
    AAA Bonds says:

    It’s becoming clear that Brooks has taken Friedman’s advice and “rebranded”.

    Since he’ll never be the guy who knows what normal people do in their daily lives and he’s been repeatedly embarrassed on that front, he’s now actively pushing himself as an ironic David Broder – you see, he’s an ass-licking sycophant, but he’s AWARE of it!

    Because clearly, that line about lunch is a calculated attempt to infuriate his critics.

    Maybe we should just stop caring about him, or, I don’t know, burn his house down with petrol bombs.

  56. 56
    JCT says:

    @Loneoak: Nancy SMASH! indeed.

    My g_d she runs rings around Boehner and his bozos. Hilarious.

  57. 57

    @Sentient Puddle:

    There’s a more conservative budget than the Ryan budget?

    Jesus. What, does it require everyone earning less than $250,000 work in the salt mines?

  58. 58
    Poopyman says:

    @Countme In:

    What should happen to murderous subhuman Republicans who threaten to murder tens of millions of Americans?
    __
    Not lunch.

    “To Serve Republicans”

  59. 59
    Comrade Javamanphil says:

    Dear Paul Ryan (and David Brooks),

    I’m sorry the cool kid didn’t invite you to his 10th birthday party even though you are totally smarter and funnier than him. Get over it.

    Sincerely,

    All of us

  60. 60
    Poopyman says:

    @Phil Perspective:

    Holy crap!! I didn’t read it last night. Cole has hit the big time!! ;-)

    Yeah. As in “cue the trolls”. Sigh.

  61. 61
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Southern Beale:

    does it require everyone earning less than $250,000 work in the salt mines?

    Pfft. A _True_ Conservatives wouldn’t allow Mexicans to get any of those sweet salt-mining jobs!

  62. 62
    cyntax says:

    OT, but TPM is reporting some hilarity going in the House right now. Seems the Dems switched all their votes to “present” on the uber-conservative RSC budget plan, forcing the Repubs to change a bunch of their “yes” votes to “no,” otherwise they’re on record for even more tax cuts to the wealthy funded on draconian spending cuts for everyone else.

    Good times.

    Oops: dmsilev beat me to it.

  63. 63
    superking says:

    This seems to me to be something that David Brooks asked Paul Ryan about. Probably something like, “So, what’s your personal relationship with the president? Have you met him?” And then it somehow gets to the fact that they’ve never had lunch. And somehow it’s the President’s fault. As if Obama needs to hold hands with every member of the Republican caucus. I have plenty of people I work with on a professional basis and not a one of them has ever invited me to lunch. David Brooks’ expectation that the pres would invite some random member to lunch is just fucking weird.

  64. 64
    slag says:

    @aimai:

    Also, IIRC when Obama went to the Republican Caucus and kicked them in the face sans teleprompter lo these many months ago

    Ha! I had forgotten about that. I think the day after that day was the day my optimism died. If we were going to ever engage in any reality-based discourse, it would have been the day after that discussion. When even the lowest Bobos among us should have seen through the absolute joke that these people tried to pass off as an agenda. But no reality-base discourse ensued. Not gonna happen.

  65. 65
    Citizen_X says:

    @AAA Bonds:

    he’s now actively pushing himself as an ironic David Broder – you see, he’s an ass-licking sycophant, but he’s AWARE of it!

    I’d like to play along, but I can’t bring myself to believe Broder Brooks has that much self-awareness. A lifetime of Smug takes its toll, after all.

    Edit: Brooks, Broder, I can’t keep those guys serparate.

  66. 66
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Randroid shitstain Ryan admirable?

    Only if you worship assholes.

    Well, it is David Brooks…

  67. 67
    Sloegin says:

    Brooksey just wants us to all amiably agree and quietly hand over everything we’ve paid into Soc Sec, Medicare & Medicaid to rich folks in the form of new tax breaks. Very reasonable. Very civil. Very bipartisan.

    Get with the program already. They are our betters don’tcha know.

  68. 68
    Martin says:

    @Loneoak: Indeed. And this isn’t even Ryan’s plan that they voted for. Ryan’s plan is the “moderate” one the GOP intends to pass.

  69. 69
    rea says:

    Remember Gingrich back in ’95? Shut down the government (by his own account) because he was mad at being made to sit at the back of the plane, riding with Clinton to Rabin’s funeral in Israel?

    Same old Republicans.

  70. 70
    dogwood says:

    Why doesn’t Paul”one of the smartest men in Washington” Ryan boldly, courageously, and SERIOULY make the first move. He could invite Obama to one of the Ayn Rand seminars he holds with his staff. Obama may be smart, but there are obvious gaps in his understanding of the great philosophers of the 20th century. Afterward, the President could invite Ryan to the White House for a special screening of Atlas Shrugged. I think this might lead to a real bipartisan deal. And to prove to people like Brooks and Sullllvan that they are really, really, really serious, they should seal the deal by marching arm in arm up to the residence and throwing Michelle’s mother out the window.

  71. 71
    sublime33 says:

    Question – How many times was Nancy Pelosi invited to dine with George W. Bush at the White House? Mr. Brooks should have that figure readily available.

  72. 72
    superking says:

    @patrick II:

    Because Ryan doesn’t want us to return to the savage capitalism of the 1920s. He wants us to return to the savage capitalism of the 1880s. Duh.

  73. 73
    slag says:

    @Elia Isquire: Oh. My. God. My optimism may be dead, but I can apparently still get a thrill up my leg. And that audio did it for me. Holy crap. I honestly didn’t think they had it left in them. But I’m starting to feel like Al Pacino in Godfather III. Just when I thought I was out.

  74. 74
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    Based on the Beltway’s reaction to Ryan’s budget plan, I’m beginning to think that human suffering is no longer a means to an end, but and end in and of itself. Ryan’s budget and Obama’s budget cut similar amounts from the deficit, but Ryan’s is better because people will suffer.

  75. 75
    PeakVT says:

    @Poopyman: Maybe, but Krugman’s trolls may not want to pass up the opportunity to finally submit that one special post that gets Krugman to change his mind and admit the folly of his ways. Trolling Cole’s blog doesn’t have the potential of such a reward.

  76. 76
    DonkeyKong says:

    C’mon you heartless monsters, “Atlas Shrugged” just wants to be “Atlas Hugged” (cue baby kitten withholding productivity)

  77. 77
    joeyess says:

    @sublime33:

    Mr. Brooks should have that figure readily available.

    That figure would be non-germane to the fact that Applebee’s has a salad bar.

  78. 78
    patrick II says:

    @aimai:

    Perhaps Brooks thinks Obama would be able to appraise Ryan as completely from Ryan’s choice of apertif as Brooks is able to so deeply understand Obama from his condiment choice of dijon mustard.

    A 75 page budget plan calling for removing a century of social gains and returning us to the free-for-all capitalism of the 19th century while leaving people without health care cannot possibly tell Obama as much about Ryan as his choice of a fine limoncello.

  79. 79
    Bokonon says:

    Shorter David Brooks: oh no! The GOP looks bad right now! I need to rush to their rescue and wave my hands around in everyone’s face, while pretending to be objective and nonpartisan!

    Seriously. The supercilious and mealy-mouthed nature of this article masks its partisan intent.

  80. 80
    salacious crumb says:

    Ryan can bring his underage kids as well. Thanks for corporate benevolence, underage kids can now be served alcohol at Applebee’s

  81. 81
    Suck It Up! says:

    Gah! I am so tired of the “Obama doesn’t show me enough attention” bitching.

  82. 82
    NonyNony says:

    @Elia Isquire:

    From Obama’s quote in the article:

    “When Paul Ryan says his priority is to make sure, he’s just being America’s accountant … This is the same guy that voted for two wars that were unpaid for, voted for the Bush tax cuts that were unpaid for, voted for the prescription drug bill that cost as much as my health care bill — but wasn’t paid for,” Mr. Obama told his supporters. “So it’s not on the level.”

    Now see, I don’t know if it was an accident or an “accident”, but this is something that needs to be the fucking message of the entire Democratic party right now. Hell someone needs to cut an advertisement using this as the basis.

    This is what should have been out there day in, day out every day for the last few weeks. Ryan is not serious about cutting the deficit because look at his own goddamn record. He’s already made it personal by kicking the poor and the elderly in the nads, so why not shove it back in his face?

    Clearly the guy at the top KNOWS that this is a good message – he’s using it with his donors after all. So why doesn’t the rest of the party get on message?

  83. 83
    dogwood says:

    @NonyNony:
    This wasn’t an accident. If the party wants to win they need to take this message and run with it. Wer’e a long way from real campaign events where the President can say these things directly to the American people day after day. But the democratic Congresscritters don’t have to spend most of their time in front of the White House podium speaking as head of state as well as head of government. They should be in campaign mode 24-7 from here on out. Doubt it will happen, but we can dream.

  84. 84
    BGinCHI says:

    Late to this thread.

    But, fuck. Obama went to Harvard Law, was on law review, then was a prof at U of Chicago.

    Paul Ryan went to Miami of OH, then worked in politics for virtually the rest of his life.

    I’m sorry, but the difference is clear: Ryan learned his ideology by working for Brownback and Kemp and others, which is a HELL of a lot different than learning a discipline (law) and having to think through matters outside the political context.

    Brooks is such a fucking upper class tool.

  85. 85
    lllphd says:

    well, surely NOT to defend brooks, but i hate to tell ya, applebee’s USED TO HAVE a salad bar.

    i know this quite certainly because about 15 or more years ago i ate a salad from said bar in said applebee’s (in memphis, to be precise), and bit down on a walnut shell, cracking my tooth down below the gumline, requiring surgery and a crown.

    i doubt that was why they dropped the bars, but they did once have them. i guess brooks has not ventured into an applebee’s any more recently than i have.

  86. 86
    bob h says:

    Brooks is indulging in some inflation here: while Obama is a great man, Ryan is a lightweight hack by any standard.

  87. 87

    […] Plenty of ink has been spilled on David Brooks channeling of poor little Paulie Ryan’s bruises. All of the scorn and ridicule is fair.  David Brooks is an innumerate hack propelled by some actual skill, but lots more good luck and well timed sychophancy into a position of influence in which he can do real damage. […]

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  1. […] Plenty of ink has been spilled on David Brooks channeling of poor little Paulie Ryan’s bruises. All of the scorn and ridicule is fair.  David Brooks is an innumerate hack propelled by some actual skill, but lots more good luck and well timed sychophancy into a position of influence in which he can do real damage. […]

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