Sometimes you have to admit defeat

I tried to write a proper analysis of Peggy Noonan’s latest emission. I labored through her evocation of a red and white and purple-prosed America that I suspect only ever existed in Peggy’s wildest gin-dreams:

…The things that divide us are not new, yet there’s a sense now that the glue that held us together for more than two centuries has thinned and cracked with age. That it was allowed to thin and crack, that the modern era wore it out.

What was the glue? A love of country based on a shared knowledge of how and why it began; a broad feeling among our citizens that there was something providential in our beginnings; a gratitude that left us with a sense that we should comport ourselves in a way unlike the other nations of the world, that more was expected of us, and not unjustly—”To whom much is given much is expected”; a general understanding that we were something new in history, a nation founded on ideals and aspirations—liberty, equality—and not mere grunting tribal wants. We were from Europe but would not be European: No formal class structure here, no limits, from the time you touched ground all roads would lead forward. You would be treated not as your father was but as you deserved.

I chuckled at the bit where she called Obama a negative, self-obsessed, divisive hater of the rich:

Where is the president in all this? He doesn’t seem to be as worried about his country’s continuance as his own. He’s out campaigning and talking of our problems, but he seems oddly oblivious to or detached from America’s deeper fears. And so he feels free to exploit divisions. It’s all the rich versus the rest, and there are a lot more of the latter.

then was entirely discombobulated when Peggy became seemed briefly coherent*:

Specifically it is the story of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage insurers, and how their politically connected CEOs, especially Fannie’s Franklin Raines and James Johnson, took actions that tanked the American economy and walked away rich. It began in the early 1990s, in the Clinton administration, and continued under the Bush administration, with the help of an entrenched Congress that wanted only two things: to receive campaign contributions and to be re-elected.

The story is a scandal, and the book should be the bible of Occupy Wall Street. But they seem as incapable of seeing government as part of the problem as Republicans seem of seeing business as part of the problem.

but then realized it was all an excuse to insert her tongue slowly into Paul Ryan, and then wiggle it around a bit, tickling the little hairs with the tip the way he likes:

Which gets us to Rep. Paul Ryan. Mr. Ryan receives much praise, but I don’t think his role in the current moment has been fully recognized. He is doing something unique in national politics. He thinks. He studies. He reads. Then he comes forward to speak, calmly and at some length, about what he believes to be true. He defines a problem and offers solutions, often providing the intellectual and philosophical rationale behind them. Conservatives naturally like him—they agree with him—but liberals and journalists inclined to disagree with him take him seriously and treat him with respect.

My brain didn’t really start to hurt until the end, where I discovered that Paul Ryan thinks the rich and politicians are evil too:

“Why have we extended an endless supply of taxpayer credit to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, instead of demanding that their government guarantee be wound down and their taxpayer subsidies ended?” Why are tax dollars being wasted on bankrupt, politically connected solar energy firms like Solyndra? “Why is Washington wasting your money on entrenched agribusiness?”

Rather than raise taxes on individuals, we should “lower the amount of government spending the wealthy now receive.” The “true sources of inequity in this country,” he continued, are “corporate welfare that enriches the powerful, and empty promises that betray the powerless.” The real class warfare that threatens us is “a class of bureaucrats and connected crony capitalists trying to rise above the rest of us, call the shots, rig the rules, and preserve their place atop society.”

although apparently it’s not negative, divisive or rich-hatey when he says it.

I tried to read the whole thing again, and pick it apart in detail for your delectation. And frankly, I just gave up. I’m neither sober enough, nor drunk enough, to care.

So, in lieu of that, I bring you my new favorite biscuits (cookies, for those of you not of Blighty born):

Who doesn’t like a nice fruity cock or two with their morning tea?

Feel free to treat this as your open thread, although if someone could take the time to make fun of both Peggy and Ryan for me, I’d be ever so grateful.

Now where did I leave those biscuits?

* ETA: Yes, I admit that Peggy is only coherent here for a particular value of coherent, namely “not very”. As commenter geg6 noted “To blame everything on Freddie and Fannie, as she does in the paragraph you highlight, is not coherent. It is the babbling of every Teabagging, conspiracy nut, Grover Norquist knob gobbling asshole on the right.” At least Peggy got all the words in the right order. That must count for something.

131 replies
  1. 1

    I tried to read the whole thing again, and pick it apart in detail for your delectation. And frankly, I just gave up. I’m neither sober enough, nor drunk enough, to care

    Sometimes it’s best just to walk on by.

  2. 2
    Chyron HR says:

    Specifically it is the story of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage insurers, and how their politically connected CEOs, especially Fannie’s Franklin Raines and James Johnson, took actions that tanked the American economy and walked away rich.

    You know who else blamed ethnic minorities for the downfall of the fatherhomeland?

  3. 3
    Jay in Oregon says:

    but then realized it was all an excuse to insert her tongue slowly into Paul Ryan, and then wiggle it around a bit, tickling the little hairs with the tip the way he likes

    Phrasing! /Archer

  4. 4
    dmsilev says:

    But, did you know that Paul Ryan is concerned about the shredded safety net?.

    I wonder what it’s like going through life after a team of surgeons has removed one’s sense of shame?

  5. 5
    PeakVT says:

    A love of country based on a shared knowledge of how and why it began; a broad feeling among our citizens that there was something providential in our beginnings; a gratitude that left us with a sense that we should comport ourselves in a way unlike the other nations of the world, that more was expected of us

    The bullshit is packed so tightly in that column it’s a wonder that Nooners’ computer didn’t blow up while she was writing it.

  6. 6
    Plethded says:

    The things that divide us are not new, yet there’s a sense now that the glue that held us together for more than two centuries has thinned and cracked with age.

    Her history teacher apparently omitted the whole civil war thing that split America apart.

  7. 7
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Oh, why can’t a building collapse on the Noonan bint and make all of our lives better?

  8. 8
    srv says:

    The Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac focus is just a hair above the CRA and ACORN memes. They were the late dancers to the bubble.

  9. 9
    Bill Section 147 says:

    Gee Peggy, what happened? The myth of government was, by the people and for the people, and then the myth became, government is the problem.

    Pretty much that simple.
    So don’t be afraid to take some credit Peg.

  10. 10
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    we were something new in history, a nation founded on ideals and aspirations—liberty, equality—and not mere grunting tribal wants.

    Yet, the vamipire David Koch despises Obama because he’s worse than near…he’s an egalitarian. Obama doesn’t defer to some asshole who was born on third base, like David Koch. Or Donald Trump. Or George H.W. Bush. Or his loathesome spawn, the deserting coward.

    Failure to forelock tug is a serious crime to the Koch tribe.

    This is why tumbrels are necessary. For assholes like the Koch brothers. Who got their fortune from their dad, who got his from Stalin.

  11. 11
    soonergrunt says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: You win on post freaking #1.

  12. 12
    Chris T. says:

    Curious… (Nooners:)

    Specifically it is the story of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage insurers, and how their politically connected CEOs, especially Fannie’s Franklin Raines and James Johnson, took actions that tanked the American economy and walked away rich. It began in the early 1990s, in the Clinton administration, and continued under the Bush administration, with the help of an entrenched Congress that wanted only two things: to receive campaign contributions and to be re-elected.

    Focus is wrong, details are wrong. It began in the 1980s, peaked temporarily during the Keating Five era, subsided but did not go away, and then ballooned monstrously starting in 1999, when Phil Gramm and the other Republicans in Congress enabled it by sweeping away the last of Glass-Steagall.

    [Edit: that was “details”; I say “focus is wrong” because Fannie and Freddie were the tail, while companies like Countrywide and AIG were the dog.]

  13. 13

    I love it. The OWS has these palace prudes shaking in their plutocrat loafers. And Peg ties it all together with her usual flowery passive aggressive triangular bullshit that liberals suck. Stop the motherfucking presses, Nooner needs to fart underneath the national blanket. Again

  14. 14
    Commenting at Balloon Juice since 1937 says:

    “What credentials does Paul Ryan possess that makes him worth listening to?”

    “Why does Paul Ryan lie whenever he opens his mouth?”

    (its not that hard, just use the quotey character on your keyboard)

  15. 15
    Q.Q. Moar says:

    @Plethded: The Civil War was a very traumatic time in Peggy’s life, so she has blotted out the memories with booze.

  16. 16
    jacy says:

    but liberals and journalists inclined to disagree with him take him seriously and treat him with respect.

    Really, I’d like to see know who those people are, because if they really exist, I want to grab a shovel and hit them repeatedly with it.

    Also, BISCUITS!

    As you were.

  17. 17
    ed drone says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Oh, why can’t a building collapse on the Noonan bint and make all of our lives better?

    Please! Think of the poor people in the building at the time! Better would be a tree falling in the forest — there might be a sound, but no one would care.

    Ed

  18. 18
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    What was the glue? A love of country based on a shared knowledge of how and why it began; a broad feeling among our citizens that there was something providential in our beginnings; a gratitude that left us with a sense that we should comport ourselves in a way unlike the other nations of the world, that more was expected of us, and not unjustly—”To whom much is given much is expected”; a general

    So what was the American Civil War, the labor movement, J Edger Hoover and the Civil Right’s movement about Noonan? Maybe I am missing something; is “providential” a code word for “murdered the first inhabitants of the land”?

  19. 19
    Q.Q. Moar says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: I suspect that, to Noonan, ‘providential’ means ‘Reagan was a fucking saint, you ingrates.’

  20. 20
    Nemesis says:

    As expected, another thousand points of trite from Noonan.

  21. 21
    JCT says:

    Honest to g_d, I *cannot* believe you read through all of Pegger’s drunken tripe, SP&T.

    You would get more from sifting kitty litter for patterns.

  22. 22
    singfoom says:

    This reminds me of NPR pimping for Paul Ryan this morning as inequality not being so bad and all about the poor job creators. I ended up screaming at the radio about how full of shit he was.

    Oh the poor job creators, hampered by uncertainty, if only we could be certain and remove all regulations from everything, all would be fine.

    The stupid burns.

  23. 23
    Svensker says:

    I went to high school with Frank Raines and always knew he’d make it big but lost touch with him years ago. So when I saw him in the 90s at the top of the heap I wasn’t surprised. I was surprised that he was such a crook — he didn’t need to be. Very sad.

    Noonan is an idiot, though.

  24. 24
    Culture of Truth says:

    Isn’t it a little early in the morning for sorrowful inebriated paens to lost white privilege?

  25. 25
    MattF says:

    Oh, Sarah… You and I have seen what happens to those happy, easy drunks we knew in our yoot. Back in the day, it was fun to carry them home, but not any more. Not pretty.

  26. 26
    EconWatcher says:

    @Nemesis:

    Nicely done!

  27. 27
    GregB says:

    Doesn’t Noonan have a dolphin to fellate somewhere?

  28. 28
    Culture of Truth says:

    Obama is out campaigning and he hasn’t returned that Nobel prize! So divisive!

  29. 29
    scav says:

    The glue that held us together was at least in part attached to the duct tape over large portions of the populations’ mouths.

  30. 30
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Q.Q. Moar: Okay, that makes sense. In Noonan’s world, history starts in 1980, when Reagan refounded America(r) after Carter destroyed the old one.

    If you just think of her as the village shaman in some paleolithic tribe trying to explain why Sargon there gets to be chief and her writing become clear.

  31. 31
    SenyorDave says:

    Anyone who reads Noonan deserves our sympathy. Who;’s worse – Noonan or Will?

    I’m still trying to understand how Obama is divisive. Is he divisive because he doesn’t have the same political philosophy as his opponents? That is the only thing I can imagine.

    She and Will are two of a kind in that they make blanket statements that are absurd, and make absolutely no attempt to use facts in their columns.

  32. 32
    geg6 says:

    Sarah, are you off your meds?

    The parts you seem to call coherent tell me that that word does not mean what you think it means.

    To blame everything on Freddie and Fannie, as she does in the paragraph you highlight, is not coherent. It is the babbling of every Teabagging, conspiracy nut, Grover Norquist knob gobbling asshole on the right.

    But then we are talking about Peggy Noonan, the drunken hag of the tight assholed righties of the Village. The only thing she left out this time was how Paul Ryan and his magical dolphins would bring us morning in America.

  33. 33
    Culture of Truth says:

    Reagan did not campaign. Jesus Christ lifted him into the oval office on a sedan chair guided by dinosaur dolphins.

  34. 34
    artem1s says:

    @Chris T.:

    Fannie and Freddie were the tail, while companies like Countrywide and AIG were the dog.

    only if you firmly believe that the rubes at the bottom who finally got invited to the Ponzi scheme should STFU and just be happy they got to play in the first place. If the little ankle biters had just quit whining and let Shrub redirect their Social Security co-pay to the market where it belongs, the Three Card Monte would still be going full steam.

  35. 35
    Judas Escargot says:

    @singfoom:

    Oh the poor job creators, hampered by uncertainty, if only we could be certain and remove all regulations from everything, all would be fine.

    Don’t you know? Uncertainty is for the little people.

    That whole idea where the ‘risk’ you take is the justification for the profits you make is just so 20th century. Get with the times.

  36. 36
    geg6 says:

    @SenyorDave:

    I’m still trying to understand how Obama is divisive.

    He’s blackity, blackity, blackity, blackity black.

    And a Dem.

    Case closed.

  37. 37
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    I know they’re working as hard as they can to make Solyndra the new Enron, and I know they’ve gotten help from ‘non-partisan’ media. Is it playing anywhere out of my sight? Or do we not know what real Americans are thinking since Richard Cohen’s friends closed up their Hamptons places for the season?

  38. 38
    The Moar You Know says:

    Peggy Noonan is nothing more than a brain-damaged mental patient who spins stories about things and people that never existed out of whole cloth.

    The difference between her and your run-of-the-mill lunatic is that she’s paid well enough to be able to afford the services of people who will remind her to bathe every now and then.

  39. 39
    geg6 says:

    @Culture of Truth:

    Fuck, man! Are you trying to get me fired?

    And where may I deliver YOUR internets?

  40. 40
    Yutsano says:

    @geg6: You do realize that the last time our dear Sarah was sober was sometime before FDR, right? :)

  41. 41
    Nemesis says:

    @SenyorDave: Anyone who reads Noonan deserves our sympathy. Who;’s worse – Noonan or Will?

    Arent they the same person? Just look around the eyes.

  42. 42
    scav says:

    @geg6: Maybe SPAT meant no more than the internally-consistent type of coherent, a well-organized and tidy word salad with nevertheless no basis in reality sort of deal.

    But my real question is to SPAT: Are those Fruity Kocke Polish biscuits taking the Jobs of native-born Blighted Biscuits?! Haarrummph rummph rummph rrummph rump.

    ETA: mm, SP&T might have been the way to go, I am dealing with a lady. (and moved again)

  43. 43
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    What is obvious is that she cannot let go of the idea that Republicans are not wrong, or that they are no worse than Democrats. Though I’m not sure I could take her writing if she were to switch sides.

  44. 44
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    What’s with all the Noohan dolphin fetish jokes? Do tell.

  45. 45
    Andy says:

    Do you think Noonan is aware she is an idiot?
    Anyone with any level of self awareness would be embarrassed to write such utter drivel.

  46. 46
    The Moar You Know says:

    we were something new in history, a nation founded on ideals and aspirations—liberty, equality—and not mere grunting tribal wants.

    NOT A DOGWHISTLE

  47. 47
    WarrenS says:

    Your Fruity Cock called for another biscuit wrapper:

    http://i614.photobucket.com/al.....BiteMe.jpg

  48. 48
    Martin says:

    A love of country white, protestant power based on a shared knowledge of how and why it began is maintained

    Yeah, there was no appreciable love of country more than we have now. People fled to the US not because they loved the place or even the idea, so much as they were fleeing the shitholes their home counties had become. NYC, that great immigrant melting pot, remains to this day a balkanized city full of clusters of people that share a common heritage and at least a romantic allegiance to the mother country.

    My family didn’t land in NYC because they were lured by the awesomeness of America – they landed here because Ireland was starving and the British were assholes and the feds were giving away free land to anyone who could hammer 4 posts in the ground. But they didn’t exactly love the place when they arrived, as the germans and english that preceded them immediately chased them out of jobs, housing, schools, and politics. The only thing America had going for it over Ireland was that it had food, but all the other shitty elements remained just perpetrated by a different collection of hooligans. To the south were millions of American who were lured here not because of opportunity but become someone put a chain around their neck, and if there was love of country, it’s because they by some miracle managed to generate it from within, and even after Lincoln liberated them, they were still treated like shit for another century more. There was no ‘glue’ there keeping us together, rather a quite stiff and well-enforced fence to make sure that everyone knew their place.

    This revisionist attitude of a former, better America is purely a construct of white fantasies that if only we put that chain back around those people’s necks and stuck a bunch of other people back on the boat, that all would be idillic again. The only miracle that America pulled off is that after two centuries of treating the 47% like shit, we only managed to self-destruct once. And the only reason why America looks like shit now is because we’re actually recognizing the poor and underserved as actual Americans. But they’ve always been poor and underserved, and vastly moreso than now.

    Noonan’s vision of equality is that everyone gets to be a princess. Well, it doesn’t work that way. Equality comes by tearing down the princesses in order to build up the underprivileged. That, of course, cannot stand.

  49. 49
    Ben Cisco says:

    Nooners is a prima facie example of the bloated, alcohol-soaked sycophant, not only content but inappropriately giddy at the thought of everything falling to pieces around her so long as she and her fellow travelers are unscathed.
    __
    On the other hand, she is a veritable model of consistency.

  50. 50
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: Oh, how I love keeping this story alive
    Peggy Noonan kicked it off in the Wall Street Journal on Monday, with her c

    omplaint that the godless President Clinton ignored the symbolism of the dolphins who allegedly accompanied Elian while he waited for rescue. “Mr. Reagan would not have dismissed the story of the dolphins as Christian kitsch, but seen it as possible evidence of the reasonable assumption that God’s creatures had been commanded to protect one of God’s children.”

    Weird formatting courtesy of Salon.

  51. 51
    JPL says:

    Is it possible that every time the President buys the glue necessary to fix the country, Mitch and Paul have a sniffing party?

  52. 52
    IrishGirl says:

    Shorter Noonan….

    While clutching her pearls, “I do declare the dirty, unwashed have just destroyed everything and only Paul Ryan is man enough to save us!” [followed by fainting onto expensive chaise lounge in her well appointed home office in Manhattan]

  53. 53
    Mike G says:

    I guess since no-one bought their first draft propaganda line about the 1978 CRA and poor black people wrecking the economy, the new Repuke propaganda line is that eeevull govmint Freddie and Fannie did it. The corporate banks who lent out the vast majority of junk credit? Nothing to see here, move along.

    A scriptwriter speechwriter for Reagan criticizing another president for being “oddly oblivious or detached” is as priceless as a Republican denouncing “grunting tribal wants”.

  54. 54
    Nemesis says:

    Tribal grunt–tribal grunt–tribal gruuunt.

    There. Noonans next column.

  55. 55
    Mark Down says:

    What was the glue? A love of country based on a shared knowledge…

    bla, bla, bla…

    Not even a hat tip to the notion of collective sacrifice?

    The real class warfare that threatens us is “a class of bureaucrats and connected crony capitalists trying to rise above the rest of us, call the shots, rig the rules, and preserve their place atop society.”

    Otherwise known as hack journalists.

  56. 56
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Egads. Everyone knows it’s Neptune and Apollo what controls the dolphins. And sometimes Aquaman.

  57. 57
    RWW says:

    Listen up ye Villagers, Peggy speaketh again with trollish concern over the state of our Civil Discourse. Understand her nostalgic and selective gaze backward through the gauzy layer of the Reagan Era, which unintentionally makes the politics that came before it look normal. But don’t linger too longly upon that vision of America past, because Peggy must blow the dog whistle of the present and remind us of Freddy/Fanny and Solyndra. Ah, another sip of Gin Fizz and ACORN might have found its way into the message. Alas, but more room for dashing and brave Paul Ryan to have his helmet buffed so he can lead the Christian Soldiers marching as to war and tax cuts.

  58. 58
    quannlace says:

    Her history teacher apparently omitted the whole civil war thing that split America apart.

    And lets not forget the Great Depression, where America was on the verge of it’s own socialist revolution.

    Oh, and I doubt she would have liked Prohibition.

  59. 59
    dj spellchecka says:

    the ny review of books does a good job demolishing the book nooner thinks should be “required reading”

    key quote

    “The GSEs [fannie and freddie] did generate large losses, but their bad investments in housing loans followed rather than led the crisis; most of those investments involved purchases or guarantees made well after the subprime and housing bubbles had been expanded by private loans and were almost about to burst.

    Even then, the GSEs’ overall purchases and guarantees were much less risky than Wall Street’s: their default rates were one fourth to one fifth those of Wall Street and other private financial firms,

    It was Wall Street, not the GSEs, that fundamentally caused the 2007–2008 crisis, which was driven not merely by a headlong pursuit of easy profit but also by ethically dubious practices.”

    http://www.nybooks.com/article.....tion=false

  60. 60
    vtr says:

    Noonan says the divisiveness began in the early 90s during the Clinton Administration. Others might claim it began in the late 60s when Nixon and company devised the Southern Strategy which exacerbated racial tensions solely for political reasons. And with Reagan’s unforgivable trip to Philadelphia, Mississippi just to announce he was running for president. (Perhaps he thought that’s where the Declaration of Independence was signed). Is there someone, somewhere, who cares enough for Ms. Noonan to put her in a home?

  61. 61
    cat says:

    @Martin:

    Well, it doesn’t work that way. Equality comes by tearing down the princesses in order to build up the underprivileged. That, of course, cannot stand.

    This is why the left is so fractured. I’m going to paint with broad strokes and say the left all agrees on Martin’s basic point, but we disagree on how to go about how remove unearned privlidge, leveling the playing field, and how to improve the quality of life of the underpriviledged.

    For the right the political message is easy because all they have to do is point to the past and say it was better so lets roll all the social and political change back.

  62. 62
    Joel says:

    Were courtiers writing crap like this for Louis XVI in 1780?

  63. 63
    Speedy says:

    “He thinks he has half a clue. He studies his navel lint with intense fascination. He reads Cliff Notes and comic books , moving his lips with every syllable . Then he comes forward to speak, calmly and at some length, about what he believes to be true and huge torrents of stupid come pouring out.”

  64. 64

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    I think the Solyndra fell off the radar when it was revealed many of the deals were actually made during the Bush administration…

  65. 65
  66. 66
    The Republic of Stupidity says:

    I find it odd, Sarah, that for your clearly visceral, and appropriate I might add, reactions to Noonan’s high-priced drivel, you did not mention vomiting… which was my FIRST and almost immediate reaction…

    Just sayin’…

  67. 67
    RWW says:

    @Certified:
    Since when did the truth about something negate its usefulness as a wingnut dog whistle? It won’t go away until after the 2012 election has extracted full political advantage from it.

  68. 68
    John PM says:

    I get the WSJ Editorial Page e-mailed to me every morning and Noonan’s was the first article I saw. When I saw the blurb, “While Obama readies an ugly campaign, Paul Ryan gives a serious account of what ails America,” I knew that I could not read it. I was hoping that someone at Balloon Juice would post on this, and I am glad it was Sarah.

  69. 69
    sistermoon says:

    MSNBC just announced a pay-per-view debate between Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain. $1000 for VIP tickets, $200 for “regular Joes”. They are calling it “a one-time replication of the Lincoln-Douglas debates”. Date TBA.

    No, I’m not kidding.

    Will this be billed as the “Battle of the Grifters”?

  70. 70
    Chris says:

    @cat:

    This is why the left is so fractured. I’m going to paint with broad strokes and say the left all agrees on Martin’s basic point, but we disagree on how to go about how remove unearned privlidge, leveling the playing field, and how to improve the quality of life of the underpriviledged.

    Inevitable side effect of the fact that the left actually sits down and thinks about shit instead of simply believing and goose-stepping in sublime unity, as you pointed out about them in the next paragraph.

  71. 71

    @John PM:

    Paul Ryan gives a serious account of what ails America

    Anyone who considers Ayn Rand as anything but a shitty writer forfeits any expectation to be taken seriously..

  72. 72
    ericblair says:

    @sistermoon:

    MSNBC just announced a pay-per-view debate between Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain. $1000 for VIP tickets, $200 for “regular Joes”. They are calling it “a one-time replication of the Lincoln-Douglas debates”.

    They don’t even need to pretend to debate: they just need to hang up a big “This Way To The Great Egress!” sign over the exit and call it a day.

  73. 73
    Lynn Dee says:

    Quote: “but then realized it was all an excuse to insert her tongue slowly into Paul Ryan, and then wiggle it around a bit, tickling the little hairs with the tip the way he likes”

    See now this bothered me. Where exactly is she poking her tongue? His nose? His ear (and his ears are hairy)? Not his mouth. His ass? And he’s a got a couple wild hairs up it?

  74. 74
    Brian R. says:

    Speaking of stupid, Herman Cain has a new video starring Nick Searcy from “Justified.” Horrrrrrrrible.

  75. 75
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @geg6:

    This, this, this.

    Asswipes like Will do not deserve the relatively clean death of the guillotine.

    No, something much more painful is needed to properly demonstrate to them the unmitigated evil of their world view.

  76. 76
    Chris says:

    @Certified Mutant Enemy:

    Anyone who considers Ayn Rand as anything but a shitty writer forfeits any expectation to be taken seriously..

    I always thought it was fantastically appropriate that they based their economic theory on a work of fiction. It’s almost as ridiculous as if they were basing their foreign policy views on Star Wars – oh shit, they’ve done that too.

  77. 77
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @sistermoon:

    For it to be a true ultimate grifter smackdown challenge, the originator of the scam, “Ambassador” Allan Keyes, and the current reigning queen of the scam, the Quittah from Wasilla, need to be included, if only for color commentary.

  78. 78
    jhaygood says:

    OT, but last night i flew into JFK seated behind orly taitz, who was, since she was breathing, reading a birther book…

  79. 79

    @geg6:
    @Chris T.:

    You are, of course, correct. I have amended my error.

  80. 80
    Chris says:

    @SenyorDave:

    I’m still trying to understand how Obama is divisive. Is he divisive because he doesn’t have the same political philosophy as his opponents? That is the only thing I can imagine.

    They don’t accept government by Democrats as legitimate, no matter how moderate the Democrats are, and haven’t since Reagan at least – see the massive freakout you had the early nineties as well. That’s at least partly related to the fact that they fundamentally don’t see Democratic constituencies as really American, or at least as deserving of full citizenship.

    For Obama, or any Democrat to be in the Oval Office at all is divisive because it’s egregiously insulting to them: the guy just doesn’t belong there.

  81. 81

    @scav:

    But my real question is to SPAT: Are those Fruity Kocke Polish biscuits taking the Jobs of native-born Blighted Biscuits?! Haarrummph rummph rummph rrummph rump.

    Undoubtedly. But they are yummy, so I don’t care.

  82. 82

    @WarrenS:

    another biscuit wrapper

    Yay!

  83. 83
    Martin says:

    @cat: Yeah, I’d say that’s pretty true. The left has a problem with ‘who is more deserving to go first’ as well, which is why progress on women’s rights gets dismissed when gay rights proves harder to achieve legislatively. Had progress come in the reverse order, the howling from the left on how Obama failed them would have been just as loud, just from different quarters. There’s no winning because legislation is always incremental and sequential, so someone always has to go first, and everyone else then declares the right to be the victim of the uncaring usurper.

    I think the most fundamental problem the US is going to have to come to grips with is that our economic boat floated higher than everyone else’s from WWII until the end of the cold war simply due to the fact that we didn’t have a country to rebuild and half the world’s population weren’t playing in the economic pool – they were all picking rice for the cultural revolution or trying to meet some Soviet 5 year wheat plan. Now that there is quite broad global economic participation, their ships are rising, and ours is having to sink a bit, and we’re trying to figure out where to put the dam.

    It’s easy to be critical of the right for putting that dam between whites and minorities – it seems like we should be past that now. But most of the left have equally arbitrary solutions – some want to eliminate the trade deals that are lifting huge numbers of people out of poverty and desperation, but that’s bad because they don’t hold the right citizenship. Some are overfocused on the nature of the economic opportunities, and you’ll find tons of people on the left that would never suggest their kid get a job picking lettuce or laying tile, or even change career in general, or even move. Others focus on the entitlement side of the problem, that it’s unthinkable that someone should have to work past 65, or change careers because they suffer a disability, and so on.

    And so everyone picks something that is somehow dear to them and advocates for it idealistically, which obviously leads to having to tear down everyone else’s solutions rather than recognize that they’re all paths there, that an ideal will never be achieved, and that an acceptable patchwork of this and that isn’t some kind of sellout, abandonment of principles, adoption of right-wing frames or whatever bullshit gets trotted out.

    Progressivism used to be about the results, not the path. How we get there shouldn’t matter so much as that we get there. If we get there with your solution, awesome. We’re there. But that’s not what the left do. There’s really no notion of progressivism in the Democratic base – it’s a hodge-podge of idealists that in aggregate average out to a progressive agenda, but when it comes time to run an election, everyone is pissed off because they vote their idealistic agenda, not the aggregate. Progressives look like Obama. If you can get people back to work through tax cuts, so long as those don’t destroy other goals, then fine, it’s a solution – the focus is on the goal. High taxes are not a virtue unto themselves. Regulation isn’t either. Nor are tariffs, and so on. They’re tools to achieve a goal, but the left forgets about the goal and only focuses on the tools. It’s annoying as fuck.

  84. 84

    […] here for a particular value of coherent, namely “not very”. As commenter geg6 noted at Balloon Juice: “To blame everything on Freddie and Fannie, as she does in the paragraph you highlight, is […]

  85. 85
    Paul in KY says:

    @Nemesis: If those 2 had ever bred (sorry for that thought), can you imagine what a tool their spawn would be?

    He/she wouldn’t have butt cheeks, because they were so tight assed.

  86. 86
    Paul in KY says:

    @Suffern ACE: What about Seaman (heh, heh)?

  87. 87
    kindness says:

    Linked over and read the article & many comments.

    WSJ used to have cerebral comments. Not any more. Now they aren’t much different from ClownHall.

    It’s sad, but what do you expect from a Murdoch product.

    Oh…Noonan? Who the hell cares what that hag says? She can suck at the teet of Sally Quinn for the rest of her days. I could care less.

  88. 88
    Martin says:

    @SenyorDave:

    I’m still trying to understand how Obama is divisive. Is he divisive because he doesn’t have the same political philosophy as his opponents? That is the only thing I can imagine.

    I think Obama is divisive because he’s not idealistic. Idealists are comfortable because there are clear labels to attach to them which they’re voluntarily adopt. They provide nice bright lines to contrast against, so opponents can be in some way constructive while they provide contrast.

    Obama doesn’t give them that. He’s a shadow with soft edges. The only way to label him and to provide clear contrast is to project an ideology on him, try and convince the public that he’s adopted it, and then provide a contrast to that lie which you just created. You can’t do that constructively, which is why the GOP looks the way they do now. They’re simply a policy disaster because they have nothing real to push against, only their own fake edifices.

    So to folks like Noonan, Obama looks divisive for not playing the game as it’s supposed to be played and forcing the right to go through this destructive bullshit. It’s all his fault that he’s not a nice, idealistic caricature, and the losers in the whole mess (to Noonan) is the country because Obama is forcing the GOP to be assholes rather than allowing them to be constructive.

  89. 89
    catclub says:

    OT: I guess no Randinho equivalent for baseball among the Frontpagers. Last Night’s game was amazingly bad (I think the first 5 runs were unearned) and amazingly exciting
    (St Louis comes back from a two run deficit two innings in a row,[ninth and tenth, natch] after two strikes and two outs).

    Plus plenty of second guessing fodder.

  90. 90
    Paul in KY says:

    @Joel: Hell no, he had Voltaire & Rousseau. Although a Peggy-eqivilent must have come up with that unfortunate ‘Let them eat cake’ line.

  91. 91
    Martin says:

    @kindness:

    It’s sad, but what do you expect from a Murdoch product.

    Not because it’s a Murdoch product. Liberals talk on blogs, conservatives spam the newspaper comments. Even liberal papers are wall-to-wall trolls and teabaggers in the comments.

  92. 92
    Skippy the Wondermule says:

    “then realized it was all an excuse to insert her tongue slowly into Paul Ryan, and then wiggle it around a bit, tickling the little hairs with the tip the way he likes”

    Wow, you know, for the Saturday Evening Post this is a bit over the top, for a blog it is note-perfect.

    Peggy “the tongue” Noonan

  93. 93
    Paul in KY says:

    @jhaygood: Did she leave a stain on the seat?

  94. 94
    Surly Duff says:

    A love of country based on a shared knowledge of how and why it began; a broad feeling among our citizens that there was something providential in our beginnings; a gratitude that left us with a sense that we should comport ourselves in a way unlike the other nations of the world, that more was expected of us, and not unjustly—”To whom much is given much is expected”; a general understanding that we were something new in history, a nation founded on ideals and aspirations—liberty, equality—and not mere grunting tribal wants.

    Oh, if we could only harken back to those glorious days of the 1790s when liberty and equality was reserved for a few and people learned not to bitch about their lack of rights.

    While such a notion is completely idiotic, at least one positive result would result in a return to a 1790s style lifestyle. Peggy Noonan would not be employed by a newspaper and I would not have to read her bullshit.

  95. 95
    Oh God it burns... says:

    @SenyorDave: To Noonan, Obama is divisive because he does not acccept Ronald Reagan as his personal political savior, like all good black and white people are supposed to do in the modern age. Incidentally, she would call a hispanic president divisive for refusing to come over and clean her house. This is the world Peggy inhabits.

  96. 96
    LAC says:

    I don’t know what is worse. This bitch on TV trying out her latest flowery nonsense or this bitch writing this flowery nonsense. And what is with these dried up old conservative white broads and their endless fixation on Ryan? Give them a flat ass preppy dweeb and they are all a flutter…

  97. 97
    gbear says:

    We were from Europe but would not be European: No formal class structure here, no limits, from the time you touched ground all roads would lead forward. You would be treated not as your father was but as you deserved.

    Unless, of course, you arrived here from, you know, Africa.

  98. 98
    KG says:

    That it was allowed to thin and crack, that the modern era wore it out.

    Forgive me if I’m wrong, but weren’t the Founders Modernists to some degree or other? It’s been a while since I studied any sort of political philosophy, but from what I remember, Modernity started some time in the 16th or 17th Century and has run through, pretty much today. It’s changed a bit but it is still Modernity.

    Or does she mean “modern” in the sense of “contemporary”… in which case, what the fuck is she talking about?

  99. 99
    KG says:

    @gbear: or in the West, China… or Ireland…

    ETA: or in the Southwest, if your family was there before we won the land in a war…

  100. 100
    scav says:

    @gbear: Or had the incorrect mixture of Xs and Ys lingering in the genome. And the informal class system in charge of deciding what you deserved would still deliver one hell of a slap.

    ETA: Don’t forget the warm welcome afforded Eastern Europeans either.

    ETA2: And we all forgot to mention the bit where if you were here already, the rules didn’t apply.

  101. 101
    xyzxyzxyz says:

    I went to the WSJ to read the article, but then I remembered that I can just wait for the Silver Fox to bring her on Meet the Press to educate us all while George “rococo” Will looks on approvingly.

  102. 102
    smintheus says:

    AP reports on the legal run-ins of Cain’s chief of staff Mark Block. Among other things, in 2010 he was fingered on tape in a scheme backed by his employers, the Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity, to cage Democratic voters in WI. But law enforcement officials refused to investigate.

  103. 103
    Svensker says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    complaint that the godless President Clinton ignored the symbolism of the dolphins who allegedly accompanied Elian while he waited for rescue. “Mr. Reagan would not have dismissed the story of the dolphins as Christian kitsch, but seen it as possible evidence of the reasonable assumption that God’s creatures had been commanded to protect one of God’s children.”

    That is an Onion piece, isn’t it? Please tell me it is.

  104. 104
    Thymezone says:

    Great thread. From Peggy Noonan, a person who is virtually unknown outside of political obsession, and even within that sphere is widely despised, and rightly so …. to exchanges over whether “Obama is divisive.”

    Forget the latter content. It’s just standard blogfare, completely useless and made up. But … Peggy Noonan? Seriously? Aren’t there some transcripts from recent Klu Klux Klan meetings, or something else interesting? Peggy Noonan? Peggy Noonan is so full of shit, she makes Rush Limbaugh look like William F. Buckley.

  105. 105
    gbear says:

    @KG: @scav:

    Oh.. and almost forgot to include the people who were already here when Noonan’s people invaded.

    edit: oops. I see KG & scav covered that.

  106. 106
    smintheus says:

    @Svensker: Dolphins are associated with Apollo or even Dionysus. What in the world do they have to do with Christ?

  107. 107
    Svensker says:

    @Lynn Dee:

    I was wondering about this myself. Thanks for articulating it.

  108. 108
    Svensker says:

    @Thymezone:

    Peggy Noonan is so full of shit, she makes Rush Limbaugh look like William F. Buckley.

    I knew El Rushbo was rotting but who knew he was also thin?

  109. 109
    Speedy says:

    Oh, why can’t a building collapse on the Noonan bint and make all of our lives better?

    No need to collapse a building on her. I’d be satisfied having a house land on her just like the one that took out her sister

  110. 110
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @gbear: Remember, if Columbus had not stopped to ask for directions to India, he would never have known that he was the first person to discover the new world.

  111. 111
    Mike in NC says:

    Peggy needs to hook up with Pat Buchanan and toss back a few drinks while they recall those Good Old Days.

  112. 112
    CarolDuhart says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: No, they need to be the undercard, baby!

  113. 113
    El Cid says:

    Noonan didn’t blame Barney Frank, Jimmy Carter and the CRA too?

  114. 114
    Jay in Oregon says:

    Over at TBogg’s joint, it is reported that the demonization of Scott Olsen, the Iraq War veteran who was critically injured at the Occupy Oakland protest, has begun.

    http://tbogg.firedoglake.com/2.....untertops/

  115. 115
    Origuy says:

    @Joel:

    Were courtiers writing crap like this for Louis XVI in 1780?

    The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle was puffing up Alfred the Great in 891.

  116. 116
    Dee Loralei says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: I think it’s how she described it when Elian Gonzales survived coming over from Cuba when his boat sank and everyone died. Dolphins must have borne him to the safety of our shores. Or some such drivel and nonsense.

  117. 117
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Thymezone:

    Peggy Noonan, a person who is virtually unknown outside of political obsession, and even within that sphere is widely despised, and rightly so ….

    Couldn’t disagree more. Widely and rightly despised in the left blogosphere, and she probably has the same national name recognition as a second-tier senator, but she’s considered a pillar of Reasonable-ness inside the Beltway. She’s a regular on the ABC Reasonable Show, isn’t she? She may be a little gooily religiose for tote-baggers (that dolphin thing, for those who asked, not The Onion. You might also want to google Peggy Noonan Reagan Shoe if you want to see the depths of her Freudian murk), but her tenure at WSJ pre-dates, IIRC, the Murdoch takeover, and before MSNBC decided to try a mild leftist lean, she was a regular there. Tweety has almost as big a crush on her as he does John Kasich.

  118. 118
    cat says:

    @sistermoon:

    MSNBC just announced a pay-per-view debate between Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain. $1000 for VIP tickets, $200 for “regular Joes”. They are calling it “a one-time replication of the Lincoln-Douglas debates”. Date TBA.

    No really, This was on the ONN, right????

  119. 119
    Surly Duff says:

    @KG:
    iPods and The Gap commercials broke my democratic republic.

  120. 120
    Jay in Oregon says:

    @smintheus:

    Among other things, in 2010 he was fingered on tape

    Phrasing! /Archer

    (Ref: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VS4QGEQaclk)

  121. 121
    cmorenc says:

    There actually is something “providential” (or if you prefer, plain blind lucky) about our country’s origins. For example, if you read Ron Chernow’s excellent biography of George Washington, which has no ideological axes to grind and is as scholarly, factually accurate as possible and still be entertainingly readable…you realize just how close Washington came to the brink several times of his army getting unrecoverably whipped by the Brits or simply dissolving below viability as a fighting force. Or how close he came a couple of times to being captured, and just how crucially the revolutionary war effort depended on him for eight long years to hold it together.

    Or alternatively, studying the US Civil War, and the crucial battle of Gettysburg, the northern army was saved from being disastrously out-flanked at Little Round Top by a matter of just five minutes, which would have turned the battle into a disaster for the north and a huge victory for the south, instead of the the crucial turning point toward inevitable southern defeat.

  122. 122
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @sistermoon:

    MSNBC just announced a pay-per-view debate between Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain. $1000 for VIP tickets, $200 for “regular Joes”. They are calling it “a one-time replication of the Lincoln-Douglas debates”.

    Lincoln-Douglas? They’ll be lucky to approach the intellectual depth of the largely-forgotten “Harpo-Chico debates” of the 1930s.

  123. 123
    Paul in KY says:

    @fasteddie9318: I read about those. Conventional wisdom was that Chico dominated the debates, since Harpo’s character was forbidden from actually speaking. He did score points via his great harp solos (and throwing a brick at Chico when he wasn’t looking).

  124. 124
    zizi2 says:

    Noonan is just polishing Pat Buchannan’s racist turd with a frothier, slimier casing. This woman disgusts me. Which part of Native Americans’, African Americans’, Asians’ communities were included in this “of Europe” la-la land she invokes in her foggy brain?

    I had no idea that slaves who were consigned permanently to their slave mothers’ status, or Native Americans dispossessed of their vast lands and herded into Reservations, enjoyed this blatant lie of hers:

    No formal class structure here, no limits, from the time you touched ground all roads would lead forward. You would be treated not as your father was but as you deserved.

    Yeah Right. Disgusting revisionist history.

    Noonan is a genocidal maniac. I mean every word I say.

  125. 125
    phil says:

    My favorite revisionist BS…

    We were from Europe but would not be European

    Should read “we were from England but would be not English”, every other European nationality was spit upon when they came over in any number. Even when my (English) family came over in the early 1960s, we were welcomed with the following statement “you are the kind of folks we like to have come here”.
    1965 Immigration Law Changed Face of America

  126. 126
    chrome agnomen says:

    @General Stuck:

    stuck, you’re a national treasure.

  127. 127
    grandpajohn says:

    @Martin: yes what yolu describe is the real America. Evidently Loony Peggy never bothered to take a history course, the America she longs for has never existed. Ask the native Indians or the Immigrants you describe or the the workers during the reign of the “Robber Barons” the Coal miners of the 20’s and 30’s or most any other period of time since our beginning
    It must be nice to be payed well for writing crap fantasy and living in the fog of never, never land.

  128. 128
    jake the snake says:

    @gbear:

    Unless, of course, you arrived here from, you know, Africa.

    Or Asia, or Easter Europe, etc

  129. 129
    jake the snake says:

    @KG:

    ETA: or in the Southwest, if your family was there before we won the land in a war…

    Or simply stole it.

  130. 130
    Thymezone says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    I love it when people make my argument for me when they think they are refuting it.

    Noonan is a regular on an ABC show? That’s about three notches after obscurity on the impact scale. Who the fuck watches that shit? Three bloggers, and some people at a mental ward dayroom where nobody can find the remote control.

    Jesus.

  131. 131
    Paula says:

    Peggy’s article is class warfare dressed up as patriotism. I expect to hear this a lot in the election.

    Patriotism. GOP throws it out anytime they want to sell something to the masses that is not in their best interest.

    The GOP has gone off the deep-end. They have been exposed. They hate the poor and middle class.

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