Friday Evening Open Thread: BoBo Brooks Stripped Bare

Trespassing on DougJ’s turf, for your amusement: Jon Chait in NYMag explains that “David Brooks Is Now Totally Pathological“:

Moderate Republicanism is a tendency that increasingly defies ideological analysis and instead requires psychological analysis. The psychological mechanism is fairly obvious. The radicalization of the GOP has placed unbearable strain on those few moderates torn between their positions and their attachment to party. Many moderate conservatives have simply broken off from the party, at least in its current incarnation, and are hoping or working to build a sane alternative. Those who remain must escape into progressively more baroque fantasies.

The prevalent expression of this psychological pain is the belief that President Obama is largely or entirely responsible for Republican extremism. It’s a bizarre but understandable way to reconcile conflicting emotions — somewhat akin to blaming your husband’s infidelity entirely on his mistress. In this case, moderate Republicans believe that Obama’s tactic of taking sensible positions that moderate Republicans agree with is cruel and unfair, because it exposes the extremism that dominates the party, not to mention the powerlessness of the moderates within it. Michael Gerson recently expressed this bizarre view, and the pathology is also on vivid display in David Brooks’s column today.

Brooks begins by noting that the Grand Bargain on the deficit, which he has spent the last two years relentlessly touting, is not actually possible. Why is it impossible? Because, he writes, “A political class that botched the fiscal cliff so badly are not going to be capable of a gigantic deal on complex issues.”

Oh, the political class? That’s funny. In 2011, Obama offered an astonishingly generous budget deal to House Republicans, and Brooks argued at the time that if the GOP turned the deal down, it would prove their “fanaticism.” Naturally, they turned it down…

What Obama should be doing in response, Brooks argues, is push for policies that provoke no opposition even from the craziest of the Republicans: “We could do some education reform, expand visa laws to admit more high-skill workers, encourage responsible drilling for natural gas, maybe establish an infrastructure bank.” Brooks argues that these issues would be uncontroversial enough to “erode partisan orthodoxies and get back into the habit of passing laws together.” Then, maybe we could pass some laws under a future president.

Note that solving actual problems is besides the point here. Brooks is almost explicit about this. He begins with the need for initiatives that he thinks will lead to happiness and comity between the parties in Washington, and then comes up with policies that might fit the bill. Not surprisingly, viewed from the standpoint of an agenda designed to make life better for Americans in some way, shape or form, Brooks’s proposed agenda is strange….

Seriously, y’all need to go read the whole thing, becasue the fisking is entertaining as well as epic.

Apart from pointing & mocking, or perhaps implementing one’s inaugural party plans, what’s on the agenda for the weekend?

190 replies
  1. 1
    cathyx says:

    I don’t want to picture Brooks stripped bare, please, let’s not go there.

  2. 2
    Corner Stone says:

    Apart from pointing & mocking, or perhaps implementing one’s inaugural party plans, what’s on the agenda for the weekend?

    I plan to find ways to use the word “orifices”, plural, in conversation.

  3. 3
    Suffern ACE says:

    Not one of those areas is free of controversy. Maybe if school reform was eliminating head start and all references to black history month curriculum. But where exactly does Brooks expect democrats and republicans to agree?

  4. 4
    The Dangerman says:

    …implementing one’s inaugural party plans…

    Keeping it simple; no specific plans beyond dropping to my knees to give thanks we aren’t inaugurating the Other One.

  5. 5
    Darkrose says:

    I’m kind of stressed because some fuckwit emailed saying I “threatened” him because I said, “If you continue to use profanity, I’m going to have to terminate the call.” (And yes, I appreciate the irony of me calling anyone on their language.) Now he’s claiming that he’s going to sic the ACLU on us. Obviously, it’s bullshit, and my boss knows it, and I documented the call six ways from Sunday, but it’s still upsetting me for some reason.

    Good thing I didn’t say what I was thinking when he tried to impress his importance on me by saying that he was a doctoral student in Anthropology: “So, your life ambition is to be a barista? Cool!”

    I need a drink, and then I’m going to spend the weekend gaming.

  6. 6
    Raven says:

    @efgoldman: My favorite troop has an online order system!

  7. 7
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Buy them (not from us). Support your local troops.

    I always do.
    :: dances happily at the thought of Thin Mints :: 

  8. 8
    Raven says:

    @efgoldman: They are working on this cool project:

    “We are making pillow case dresses to send to little girls in Liberia. You can help these girls feel pretty and important by donating materials for a pillowcase dress. Girl Scouts in Historic Georgia has a goal of making 1,000 dresses by February 25, 2013!”

  9. 9
    The Dangerman says:


    …a benevolent pasta…

    I think Divine Spaghetti would be a fine product name (probably been taken, but I’m too lazy to google).

    ETA: Yup; Divine Pasta Company.

  10. 10
    Baud says:



  11. 11
    Raven says:

    @efgoldman: Did you know the Girl Scouts were founded in Savannah?:

    “Juliette “Daisy” Gordon Low assembled 18 girls from Savannah, Georgia, on March 12, 1912, for a local Girl Scout meeting. She believed that all girls should be given the opportunity to develop physically, mentally, and spiritually.”

    and her house:

    “The Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace—a Girl Scout national center in Savannah, Ga.—has something to offer everyone. It is the birthplace of Juliette Gordon Low, founder of Girl Scouts of the USA, who was affectionately known by her family and friends as “Daisy.”

    And, as a kicker, they can’t sell cookies there!

  12. 12
    Alison says:

    I started reading that Brooks column today, just for kicks, but when I got to this line:

    I may be earnest, but I’m not an idiot.

    I just LOL’d and turned the page. Oh, David. Both/and, both/and!

  13. 13
    lamh35 says:

    Just watched the Series Finale of Fringe on FOX. As a diehard fan, IT WAS AWESOME. It’s definitely gonna be on my list of favorite Sci-fi series finales. Heck it’s gonna be on my list of favorite all time finales too.

    Welp, first, Star Trek:The Next Generation, then, The X-files, now Fringe. WTF sci-fi program am I supposed to watch now? Here’s hoping there are more new sci-fi shows like it next season.

  14. 14
    Gwangung says:

    Tonight, watching some brothers in the sketch comedy fraternity (and it IS brothers….my group is the only group that has more than one female in the group) and being unnaturally jealous. Ten, tomorrow night, a SAG actor friend is showing off two or three screeners of Best Pixture nominees.

    Not a bad plan for the weekend.

  15. 15
    Valdivia says:

    that article was delicious to read. I need a cigarette.

  16. 16
    MikeJ says:


    Maybe going to see “Lincoln,” while we wait for 150 cases of Girl Scout cookies to be delivered.

    Perhaps you want to go to imgur and comment on this. Also too on reddit.

  17. 17
    Baud says:

    Then, maybe we could pass some laws under a future president.

    They can’t all be black from here on out…

    Can they?

  18. 18
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    Need to read the whole article but:

    The prevalent expression of this psychological pain is the belief that President Obama is largely or entirely responsible for Republican extremism.

    It is entirely the presidents fault: He’s black and yet won’t get angry.

    “We could do some education reform, expand visa laws to admit more high-skill workers, encourage responsible drilling for natural gas, maybe establish an infrastructure bank.”

    Hey, Brooks, they’ve already been proposed by Obama, and already shot down by the Republicans.

  19. 19
    Baud says:

    Ezra is talking about Chait’s theme right now on LOD.

  20. 20
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Baud: We need a Hispanic president next, maybe a Hispanic female.

  21. 21
    Baud says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    Maybe that lady from Modern Family. She’s cute.

  22. 22
    Little Boots says:

    I think we might actually be in the end times of crazy. people really are catching on. it is no longer okay to bring the cray-cray to every congressional debate.

    may be wrong, of course, but really, the signs are there. the loons are exposed, and people actually are starting to notice.

  23. 23
    Anne Laurie says:


    we wait for 150 cases of Girl Scout cookies to be delivered. mrs efgoldman is the “cookie cupboard” for the town

    Forget about the gun collectorz wailing that the bad men might show up to steal their awesome weaponry — I wanna burgle your house!

  24. 24
    Mnemosyne says:

    Just sent my dad’s obituary off to three different publications (fortunately, I only have to pay one of them). Thinking about having some mini corn dogs for dinner.

    Tomorrow, G is taking his car in for a tune-up, and I’m thinking about taking a look through the Toyota showroom when I go to pick him up. I adore my RAV-4, but it’s 15 years old and I’m starting to get nervous about my safety if some idiot in an SUV decides to t-bone me. The fact that I know two different people (including Soonergrunt) who walked away from totaled cars last year because they had the latest safety equipment is forefront in my mind.

  25. 25
    Little Boots says:

    i love how disjointed this site is.

  26. 26
    Baud says:

    @Little Boots:

    i love how disjointed this site is.

    I’m just happy we still have a site after what happened earlier today.

  27. 27
    Anne Laurie says:

    @MikeJ: Awesome. If I use this image in a future post (“Buy more GS cookies, they support empowering young girls to make smart choices!”) is there someone I shoud, uh, “credit”?

  28. 28
  29. 29
    ulee says:

    My agenda is to remain tethered to my electric blanket. It is cold here in Maine, and my cord reaches from the computer to the kitchen and to the living room. It doesn’t reach to the bathroom, but those excursions are necessary to preserve the Republic.

  30. 30
    General Stuck says:

    Sometimes it is hard to fully appreciate the wide chasm of different world views between the wingnuts and liberals. Then a little nugget of information pops up that really shines a light on the paranoid mean spirited world that conservative republicans live in.

    From Redstate. A shocking example of the evil dimensions of the cult of Obama. Liberals being duped into making dubious incantations all in order to worship at the alter of Barack.

    You can see for yourself the evidence posted by the Trike Force Patriots, exposing once and for all the ugly fetishism of liberal thinking and devotion to dear leader.

    Obama Fetishism – The Hollow Evil of Tactical Adoration Teh tactical horror.

  31. 31
    Little Boots says:

    wow, what happened, baud?

  32. 32
    Little Boots says:

    oh, damn that’s funny.

    but I would so miss this site, although John hates me, it is not reciprocated.

    plus, omnes.

  33. 33
    Baud says:

    @Little Boots:

    See link at # 37.


    I wish! Although all the good stuff here happens when I’m working or sleeping, so I tend to miss the fun.

  34. 34
    ulee says:

    @efgoldman: electric heaters are death machines. Not a day goes by when I don’t read in the newspaper–electric heater burns down two story home or more often, electric heater alights mobile home. Thanks for the recommendation, but those little bastards can’t be trusted.

  35. 35
    Rosie Outlook says:

    I will spend an exciting weekend sitting around mainlining chicken soup and antibiotics, recovering from walking pneumonia. Whee.

  36. 36
    Little Boots says:

    good lord, people, comment.

  37. 37
    Maude says:

    @Anne Laurie:
    If the photo is on a website, there should be something either in the caption or at the bottom of the page called terms of use. If isn’t a CC license or states plainly it can be used, I’d steer clear.

  38. 38
    Johannes says:

    @lamh35: the Doctor will see you now….

  39. 39
    ulee says:

    @Little Boots: Cut back on the working and sleeping.

  40. 40
    ulee says:

    @Rosie Outlook: Rosie, yes, the flu is nasty this year. All the more reason to stay away from human beings as much as workable.

  41. 41
    Little Boots says:


    can’t cut back on the working.

    that leaves only … yes.

  42. 42
    Splitting Image says:

    Martin Luther on David Brooks:

    You moderate enforcer and eulogizer of moderation. You are one of those bloody and deceitful people who affect modesty in words and appearance, but who meanwhile breathe out threats and blood.

    Lutheran Insulter

  43. 43
    lamh35 says:

    @Johannes: I did watch Doctor Who for a while, but I drifted away from it when David Tennant left. I just wasn’t interested in the Matt Smith evolution.

    Now I was a bigger fan of Torchwood, but I’m assuming that the Showtime show did not do well enough for them to pay for another series of it.

  44. 44
    Mnemosyne says:


    I concur with Johannes — if you haven’t tried “Doctor Who” yet, give it a shot. You should be able to start with the Christopher Eccleston reboot of the series on Netflix streaming.

    Or just jump in on BBC America. Matt Smith is dreamy.

  45. 45
    Little Boots says:

    Is David Brooks Satan?

    It is possible.

  46. 46
    lamh35 says:

    @Mnemosyne: yeah, like I said above, I did watch Dr Who during the Tennant incarnation, but just haven’t been interested in the Matt Smith versions.

    Question, has Captain Jack from Torchwood been on the Matt Smith series?

  47. 47
    the Conster says:

    Bill Maher was great tonight. “Between Jody Foster, Lance Armstrong and Manti Te’o, it was a bad week for the clueless.”

  48. 48
    Mnemosyne says:


    I guess it’s all a matter of taste — I really prefer Matt Smith’s doctor to David Tennant’s. Or maybe I just have a girl crush on Dr. River Song.

    I don’t think Captain Jack has been on, but I can check with G. He’s my go-to source on all things Who. I got him this for Christmas this year.

  49. 49
    ulee says:

    My house is freezing. Time for the knit hat and scarf. I’ve got the thermostat on 58 but it’s 9 outside. Usually I keep it higher but no income means I’ve got to conserve.

  50. 50
    MikeJ says:

    @Anne Laurie: I don’t think most of the people on either site were likely to fall victim to that particular nonsense (although there is plenty of bullshit of various types swallowed there.) Happily the person who posted it said she was supporting GSA more because of it. No idea where she got other than random facebookery.

  51. 51
    Little Boots says:

    so cold. soooo quiet.

  52. 52
    piratedan says:

    I can recommend the new Whitechapel series on BBC America. Then again, I’ve always liked Rupert Penry-Jones from his time on MI-5 too

  53. 53
    Little Boots says:

    still miss omnes.

  54. 54
    eric says:

    gotta work all weekend and travel to central illinois for a week of depositions then race back and prepare for a two day trial in a different case; write a post-trial brief in a different case and two motions in two other different cases all by feb 1….in other words, there is much suckage in my future

  55. 55
    Jewish Steel says:

    @Darkrose: Mysterious threats from a disembodied presence are a total pisser. Shake it off. Guy sounds like a total whack-job. Probably harasses people on the phone for sport.

  56. 56
    ulee says:

    @efgoldman: ef. I think you’re right. But they make me paranoid. I have a new electric heater my uncle gave me but I do not use it. I’m a worse case scenario kind of person. Electric Heaters spike my symptoms. I won’t go into the specifics, it’s wearying enough to live with them.

  57. 57
    Dee Loralei says:

    @lamh35: There’s Merlin on SciFi, I like it. Warehouse 13 will be back soonish also. There’s that new The Following, but that looks too creepy for me. RipperStreet is starting on Wed on BBC, that looks interesting.

    But yea, for SciFi, I think we’re outta luck. If you have Netflix or Amazon Prime you can stream some of the stuff you missed first time around. I recommend Max Headroom. Sorry I’m not more helpful. I haven’t watched Fringe yet, twitter says I’ll cry and be very pleased with the way it ended.

  58. 58
    Little Boots says:

    merlin is fun.

  59. 59
    eric says:

    @Dee Loralei: i enjoyed Merlin very much….

  60. 60
    BillinGlendaleCa says:

    @Mnemosyne: A 15 year old car. I call that a new car. I bought mine when St. Ronnie was pres. After my wife’s accident in April, we paid a visit to the Toyota dealer to look at the Prius. We liked it a lot, but because she doesn’t drive that much; she didn’t think it was worth the price premium. She ended up with a Hyundai and is happy.

    Also, sorry to hear about your dad’s passing. I saw a comment from you about it in a very old thread so didn’t think a comment there would be noticed.

  61. 61
    Linnaeus says:


    Good thing I didn’t say what I was thinking when he tried to impress his importance on me by saying that he was a doctoral student in Anthropology: “So, your life ambition is to be a barista? Cool!”

    Well, if the guy was a fuckwit, I can understand, but as a humanist myself, I can’t join in on the Everyone Must Be An Engineer/Business Major that’s passing for conventional wisdom these days.

  62. 62
    Corner Stone says:


    I’ve got the thermostat on 58

    58? Why don’t you fire up the brick oven for a bit to warm the area?

  63. 63
    Dee Loralei says:

    @piratedan: I thought that was called Ripper Street? I too have a thing for Rupert Penry Jones.

    And I’m with Lamh, David Tennant is my Doctor, but I like Matt Smith just fine. And actually the Matt Smith stories are more interesting.

  64. 64
    SatanicPanic says:

    PARTY! is the agenda.

  65. 65
    Suzanne says:

    @Raven: My Girl Scout, aka Spawn the Elder, went to Savannah last summer with her troop. They sold enough boxes of cookies to all fly out there.

    She’s selling them this year, too. God help me. I cannot say no to a Samoa.

  66. 66
    Anne Laurie says:

    @Maude: It’s not a “photo” like that, but a image-suitable-for-forwarding-to-all-your-FB-friends warning that the Girls Scouts supports Planned Parenthood’s “socialist agenda” of telling young girls they have the right to make their own choices about sexual activity, the horror!

  67. 67
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    I can only click over to Brooks’ column by poking a stick at the keyboard. Scan the wretched refuse and get the hell out of there before Doug J catches me at it somehow. Today was different– the Stooopid was SO thick and ripe. Bobo’s reached some kind of escape velocity-degree of self-parody this week.

  68. 68
    Dee Loralei says:

    @eric: 4th Season started a few weeks ago. So it’s still ongoing.

  69. 69
    Little Boots says:

    well, he’s no omnes, but at least cornerstone.

  70. 70
    Todd says:

    Going through “Sons of Anarchy” reruns and drinking Basil Hayden straight.

  71. 71
    eric says:

    @Dee Loralei: i knew it was coming back, but i did not know it was back…so now i am behind….argh

  72. 72
    Corner Stone says:


    I cannot say no to a Samoa.

    Lennay? Is that you?

  73. 73
    Suzanne says:

    Spawn the Younger has a double ear infection. Doctor scratched her ear scraping wax out of it, and she’s bleeding. I am still getting over the plague. Mr. Suzanne is also sick. This sucks donkey balls.

  74. 74
    Suzanne says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Lennay? Is that you?

    To where shall I deliver your Internet, sir?

  75. 75
    Anne Laurie says:

    @efgoldman: Don’t tempt me, you fiend!….

    Seriously, tho, thanks for the reminder. Since I no longer work in an office with multiple parents-of-GSs, I have to hunt down my cookies in the wild. Which, the local district’s website informs me, means going to the mall in early February and seeing if they’ll sell me Thanks-A-Lots(tm) by the case. :)

  76. 76
    Little Boots says:


    don’t encourage the arrogance.

  77. 77
    mclaren says:

    The spectacle of watching the Republican party go insane and disintegrate may prove delightful…until you realize that this political Hindenberg disaster covers up and legitimizes Obama’s and the Democrat party’s veer into extremist lawlessness not seen since the days of Pol Pot’s Year Zero.

    Aaron Swartz’s murder offers just the latest example of Obama and the Democrats’ demented abandonment of the basic foundations of western jurisprudence — foundations which have underlain Western society since the Magna Carta.

    While everyone giggles and snickers and points at the Republicans’ implosion, none of you (other than Corner Stone) seems to be pointing with the horror it deserves at Obama’s ever-increasing drone murders of innocent women, children, and aid workers who go to rescue to mutilated children. Murdering rescue workers after the initial strike is an atrocity former used only by terrorists like Hamas and Carlos the Jackal. (“U.S. Drones Targeting Rescue Workers, Mourners,” Slate, 5 February 2012.) Now, courtesy of Barack Obama and his totalitarian sidekick Joe Biden (original author of the precursor to the USA Patriot Act), these atrocities are part of “normal” foreign policy.

    Under both the Republican and Democratic parties America has descended into an abyss of extrajudicial murder, torture, kidnapping and the paramilitary police brutalization of anyone who dares dissent against these barbarities.

    “There is no one in the United States over the age of 18 who cannot be indicted for some federal crime,” said John Baker, a retired Louisiana State University law professor… “That is not an exaggeration.”

    And if a prosecutor should turn his righteous all-powerful gaze on you, you’re done for. (…) Where’s the accountability? What about crusaders for “justice” with half their minds on their next career in politics?

    As a foreigner, I’m surprised that Americans aren’t more alarmed by the workings of their criminal justice system. I don’t know what ought to scare me more about living in the United States–that I might be the victim of a crime (which happens), or that this ferocious prosecutorial system might one day turn its wrath on me. I’d rather be mugged than threatened with years in jail for something I didn’t even know was a crime. Is this justice system actually on my side? I’m by no means sure–an astounding state of affairs.

    At a conference I attended recently, I vented my preoccupation with rogue prosecutors, an ever-proliferating criminal law and the vanishing rights of the accused on a fellow attendee–a lawyer and former prosecutor. When I’d said my piece she said, “But you have to remember that nearly all of the people who are prosecuted are guilty.” For half a second I thought she was joking and I started to laugh. But she wasn’t joking.

    Source: “The death of Aaron Swartz,” Clive Crook, The Atlantic magazine online, 15 January 2013.


    Amendment IV

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    Amendment V

    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

    Amendment VI

    In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

    Amendment VIII

    Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

    All these basic constitutional guarantees have now be wiped out by Bush and Obama and a bipartisan coalition of Democrats and Republicans who agree that 900-year-old foundations for a civlized society, like being accused of a crime before your government murders you, are superficial frills unnecessary in the brave new world of 21st century America.

    Secret laws…secret trials…torture…kidnapping by the government…unlmited imprisonment in secret prisons…murder of our own citizens without even accusing them of a crime…and a public proclamation that the President need not even explain to anyone why he is murdering his own citizens — a power that not even William the Conquerer claimed (when he tortured and murdered his own subjects, William the Conquerer at least agreed that he owed his barons an explanation of why each subject was being murdered).

    And even this is not the most horrifying part of living in Shithole America in 2013.

    No, the most hideous and monstrous aspect of dwelling in the United Snakes of Amnesia in 2013 is the realization that anyone who quotes from the Bill of Rights is now showered with acid ridicule as “a purity troll” and “off his meds” and “telling us that Obama is barbecuing Martians on the South Lawn.”

  78. 78
    ulee says:

    @Corner Stone: The butler smashed the brick oven in a fit of consternation. I still don’t know what his problem is. Needless to say, I had to let him go.

  79. 79
    piratedan says:

    @Dee Loralei: ahhh well, you have your MI-5 leads confused… Matthew MacFayden is the lead for Ripper Street, which is a period piece set back in victorian times, he was the first lead on MI-5. He was followed by Rupert Penry-Jones, who was the 2nd lead in MI-5 and he’s moved on to a BBC police procedural called Whitechapel. haven’t seen Ripper street yet, so it’s an unknown quality although I last caught MacFayden in the original Death at a Funeral.

  80. 80
    Suzanne says:


    Aaron Swartz’s murder

    Have a Lithium.

  81. 81
    Little Boots says:


    and you think this started a few years ago?


  82. 82
    ulee says:

    @Little Boots: Omnes has fled the country. He spoke of you Little Boots. He said, “Tell Little Boots I have fled the country.” I wish I could tell you more, but his flight was a shock to us all.

  83. 83
    Corner Stone says:

    @ulee: Hmmm. Well, surely you have the overweight women from the local McDonald’s to keep you warm then?
    I mean, what has it all come to? After all this time, what has it all come to?

  84. 84
    Little Boots says:


    dammit. not again.

    how’s Doug?

  85. 85
    Citizen_X says:

    @MikeJ: And like all good Marxist thug organziations, the Girl Scouts are ruthless to those who oppose them.

  86. 86
    Roger Moore says:

    @Splitting Image:
    That’s pretty cool. I got

    People of your sort are hirelings, dumb dogs unable to bark, who see the wolf coming and flee or, rather, join up with the wolf.

  87. 87
    kindness says:

    Sure hope I don’t run into any nut jobs celebrating Gun Appreciation Day tomorrow.

  88. 88
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    @mclaren: Thank you so much for your comments! We are now guilty and radicalized– Mission Accomplished! However, this is Balloon Juice–perhaps your pets would like to post something?

  89. 89
    eric says:

    @Sawgrass Stan: you dont own animals, you co-habitate, so they are not his/her pets.

  90. 90
    Viva BrisVegas says:


    I’ve got the thermostat on 58 but it’s 9 outside.

    It’s about 96 outside here in sunny BrisVegas. I’m afraid to go outside for fear of bursting into flames.

    What a pity we can’t setup a small wormhole from your place to mine and exchange calories.

  91. 91
    ulee says:

    I am weary of the electric heaters. I am weary of Omnes’ flight. I am weary of the destruction of the brick oven. I am weary of the overweight women at the local McDonald’s. I am a sick man. I am a spiteful man. I fear my liver is diseased.

  92. 92
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    @eric: @eric: Sorry, missed that, I was arguing with Eightball-the-cat about who’s turn it is to bite the rat.

  93. 93
    Roger Moore says:

    Maybe you should try one of the oil filled radiator types. They don’t ever get as hot as the hot air blowing ones do, and they even have thermal fuses that will shut them down completely before they get too hot for safety. I just had to replace the thermal fuse in one because it had gotten over 144C (about 290F), which isn’t hot enough to set anything on fire.

  94. 94
    eric says:

    @ulee: I shot a man in reno just to watch him die.

  95. 95
    mclaren says:

    @Little Boots:

    and you think this started a few years ago?

    Where do you get this from?

    Where did I say that?

    Obviously it’s been getting worse and worse ever since Nixon abandoned the rule of law. With each new president in the White House, we seem to pass a new threshold for lawlessness…that’s what proves so scary.

    Nixon: “If the president does it, that means it’s legal.” Warrantless wiretapping, burglary of political opponents, bribes, obstruction of justice. (But at least Americans agreed it was illegal and unconstitutional.)

    Reagan: “Facts are stupid things.” Signing statements, illegal arms-for-hostages deals, massive corruption and bribery, bills written by lobbyists.

    Clinton: “It depends what the definition of `is’ is.” Extraordinary rendition. The Clipper chip.

    Bush: “The constitution is just a piece of goddamn paper.”
    Lying us into an illegal war of aggression. Torture. Worldwide secret assassination squads. Pre-emptive arrest of non-violent political protesters on terrorism charges before they could even protest. Warrantless wiretapping. Massive corruption, bribery on a scale never seen before in American politics. Cronyism, insider trading, thievery on a monumental scale. Secret prisons. Secret evidence in secret trials so unjust that the lead military prosecutor at Guantanamo resigned in protest.

    Obama: “Some have argued that the president is required to get permission from a federal court before taking action against a United States citizen who is a senior operational leader of Al Qaeda or associated forces. This is simply not accurate. “Due process” and “judicial process” are not one and the same, particularly when it comes to national security. The Constitution guarantees due process, not judicial process.” — Attorney General Eric Holder

    Continuation of the secret prisons and torture used in the Bush administration, continuation of worldwide secret assassination squads, continuation of extraordinary rendition, continuation of warrantless wiretapping. Refusal to punish any of the massive bribery and corruption and thievery of the previous administration. And the new one: Obama asserts the right to make war anywhere he wishes without congressional authorization or restriction (Libya) and Obama also asserts the right to murder American citizens without charging them with a crime…and without having to explain why, to anyone.

    Anyone notice a trend here?

    America is in a supersonic powerdive toward collapse, and the most you people can think of to do is make fun of the crazy flight crew.

  96. 96
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    @ulee: ulee, the only way to strengthen your liver is by exercising it. I’m doing four-pound liver-lifts and double vodka shots.

  97. 97
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    @eric: me, too. Then I met a gin-soaked queen in Memphis. Tried to take me upstairs for a ride.

  98. 98
    eric says:

    @Sawgrass Stan: and when i tried to go home, the said you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave

  99. 99
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    Well, I left without checking out, but it showed up on my card anyway. Got to know when to fold ’em.

  100. 100
    Corner Stone says:

    @ulee: Weary? The fuck you’re weary.
    When was the last time you faxed your credenzas to anyone? When did you last see the helicopters laughing at you? How many sex toys have you shipped across the states for the pleasurement of those possibly less deserving?

  101. 101
    eric says:

    @Sawgrass Stan: yup, and I’m a cowboy, on a steel horse I ride; I’m wanted dead or alive

  102. 102
    mclaren says:


    Mnemosyne is right. The new Doctor Who is in many ways much better than the old series, and well worth checking out. Eccleston was too much of a soccer hooligan for my taste, but the scripts for the first 2005 season of the new Who were outstanding, and David Tennant and Matt Smith are both great in their own ways.

    A lot of the old Doctor Who series boiled down to “magical journeys” with tons of filler. Even excellent episodes like “The Dalek Invasion of Earth” or “The Web Planet” (both with the first Doctor) suffered from lots of padding induced probably by a low budget and the half-hour serial format.

    In just about every way, the new Dr Who series is superb. You really owe it to yourself to check it out.

  103. 103
    Narcissus says:

    @ulee: Get one of those bed warming stones.

  104. 104
    mclaren says:


    Have a lithium.

    Don’t you mean “Have a soma”?

  105. 105
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Little Boots: Honestly, I am not sure whether Corner Stone or I should be more insulted.

    @Corner Stone: Well fucking played.

  106. 106
    eric says:

    @Corner Stone: young girls they do get wooly….

  107. 107
    Corner Stone says:


    Get one of those bed warming stones.

    I don’t think so. Unless ulee is a really cute petite redhead. Or blonde. Or brunette.
    Ok, unless ulee has two XX chromosomes.

    Ok, ok. Just invite me in and let’s call it a night.

  108. 108
    mclaren says:

    @Sawgrass Stan:

    Thank you so much for your comments! We are now guilty and radicalized– Mission Accomplished! However, this is Balloon Juice–perhaps your pets would like to post something?

    Are you sure your pets aren’t posting?

    Let me get this straight: if I protest the ongoing breakdown in the rule of law, I’m preaching to the choir and wasting my time. Meanwhile, if I don’t protest the ongoing breakdown in the rule of law in America, then I have no right to object because I’m not, you know, actually speaking out.


  109. 109
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    @eric: …and he said “R.U. (insert name),” in a very deep voice, and I said, “Yeah, Sheriff, and that’s your WIFE on the back of my horse!” A rescue horse, of course, of course… with sex toys for the undeserving, and underserved, Corner Stone & Yulee

  110. 110
    Narcissus says:

    @Corner Stone:

    XX chromosomes

    Why limit yourself is what I say

  111. 111
    MikeJ says:

    @Citizen_X: Disaster girl is not used enough any more.

  112. 112
    Dee Loralei says:

    @piratedan: Yea RipperStreet with MacFayden starts Wed, and I am watching Whitechapel also on BBC. So yes, I was confused when I typed the comment. Because I like MI5 too, LOL. And yea, I liked the Brit Death at a Funeral a lot. And I am also a fan of Rupert Penry Jones. Thanks for straitening me out.

  113. 113
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Citizen_X: Awesome.

  114. 114
    Yutsano says:

    @MikeJ: Girl Scouts should be professional assassins. Lord knows they can be ruthless enough to pull that shit off.

  115. 115

    @Little Boots: Read some of the articles about the bank in Texas that’s welcoming concealed carry because Yankees keep robbing them.

  116. 116
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Yutsano: You may recall that my idea of Obama using teenaged girls as negotiators was decreed to be a violation of the Geneva Conventions.

  117. 117
    Corner Stone says:

    I think, beyond the ridiculous premise, the part I enjoy the most of The Fast and the Furious movie is where the ADHD car genius slides the floppy disk into the 386 proto computer and cool 3D displays start happening.

  118. 118
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    @mclaren: Yes.

  119. 119
    ulee says:

    Omnes. So you have returned. Little Boots has been asking for you and so I will leave that between the two of you. Omnes, I am glad you can text and tell us your story.

  120. 120
    Corner Stone says:

    @Narcissus: I’m still only attracted to females in actual life at this point. But I do have to say I recently had a vaguely disturbing dream with Tyler Florence prominently displayed.
    I knew it was wrong in some respect but he’s a celebrity chef! What was I supposed to do?

  121. 121
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    I’ve said this before, and I’ll no doubt say it again: the sooner David Brooks’ broken, exsanguinated body is found in a dirty back alley, the better.

  122. 122
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @ulee: I wasn’t gone; I just haven’t been here at times when others are here. Also too, you aren’t ready for my story.

  123. 123
    Yutsano says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I think it had something to do with underutilising their skills. Or burquas. I forget the exact details now.

  124. 124
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Well, you are a master of the obvious.

    @Yutsano: Too cruel.

  125. 125
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: better for the Times, maybe but what about the alley?? Somebody think of the alley!!!

  126. 126
    piratedan says:

    @Dee Loralei: hey, just happy to know I’m not the only one watching! Always glad to meet another fan of quality tv.

  127. 127
    ulee says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: We were just joking around. Omnes, I wouldn’t expect you to tell me your story. I would never diminish your experiences and I was just being foolish and silly.

  128. 128
    Donut says:


    As a former professional musician, I resent, er, resemble that remark.

    Well, at least I used to.

  129. 129
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @ulee: My story is my story; it can neither be diminished nor augmented by others. It may, however, be influenced by them. I am currently open to having my story be influenced by tall, yet lithe, straight-haired brunettes. If possible, French ones. Just saying. The French thing is not a deal breaker.

  130. 130
    Yutsano says:

    @Donut: You were a lot more gutsy than me. But I got just enough of a peek into the business to say uhh never mind. I’d still kill to be the English horn player for the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.

  131. 131
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Yutsano: I was never more than a third chair first violin. And first chair viola just isn’t the same as Concert Master, is it?

  132. 132
    ulee says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I am thinking language is not a deal breaker for you or any other guy.

  133. 133
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @ulee: Pourquoi? Je parle Francais.

  134. 134
    Corner Stone says:

    I, for one, am getting really fucking tired of Al Gore.

  135. 135
    Suzanne says:


    Don’t you mean “Have a soma”?

    I mean, “Shut the fuck up.”

  136. 136
    Yutsano says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I’m an oboist. Concert masters go with my pitch or I bulldoze them into oblivion. There’s a reason everyone tunes to me.

    I personally think cor anglais sounds even more magical than hautbois. But YMMV as with all things.

  137. 137
    Steeplejack says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I know you, my brother, and I know your story is good and straight and fine and true. It is the story of us all: that we are all fucked but we are all right as long as we do not know it.

  138. 138
    Corner Stone says:

    @Steeplejack: I thought his story was about love and neglect and loss and self delusion?
    Maybe we’re saying the same thing.

  139. 139
    ulee says:

    @Omnes Omnibus<@Omnes Omnibus: I guess it all comes down to whether you are a kind person.

  140. 140
    Darkrose says:

    @Linnaeus: I was planning to get a PhD in Renaissance History, so I’m a fan of the humanities. I’m becoming less and less of a fan of grad students, though, because too many of them deal with their lack of status by punching down to the only people who are lower than they are: the staff.

    That’s true across all disciplines. Humanities students are usually not too bad, but social scientists are defensive about not being in the hard sciences. MBA and law students tend to be arrogant jackasses who aren’t half as smart as they think they are (surprise). The engineering and CS types are as smart as they think they are in one extremely narrow area but usually can’t configure their mail clients properly or figure out how to use Google.

    …it’s possible that I’m a little bitter and cynical. Working in tech support will do that.

  141. 141
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Yutsano: Me dad played oboe. Me mum played violin. Mom and I differed on violins of choice. Hers is modeled on a Guanerius and mine on a Strad. Personality diffs, I guess.

    OTOH I want one of these. I can’t play it at a level that justifies having it. But I would work to get there.

  142. 142
    Yutsano says:

    @efgoldman: You should know as well as anyone you can’t march a double reed. Well theoretically you could but I really don’t recommend it. When double reeds shatter it ain’t pretty. This might explain the two tuba mouthpieces on the bar of my kitchen.

    Murray Gold writes awesome English horn solos. I covet.

    @Omnes Omnibus: It was always worth it to be second or third oboe because that meant I got my paws on the cor. But orchestral winds are a bit less competitive than strings. Some of those rivalries get downright violent.

  143. 143
    Darkrose says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: For some reason, possibly involving listening to a lot of Apocalyptica lately, I’ve been wondering if 42 isn’t too late to learn to play the cello.

    (Then I remember the flute and guitar in our storage cupboard neither of which I’ve touched in years.)

  144. 144
    Steeplejack says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Yes. It is all nada. I nada in the depths of the nada.

  145. 145
    Corner Stone says:


    I was planning to get a PhD in Renaissance History

    And then make a living sharpening fake swords at traveling Ren Fest troupes?
    Or were you going to read towne proclamations in Olde English once a year and spend the rest of your time working with Al Bundy selling shoes at the mall.

  146. 146
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @efgoldman: Long time ago.

    @Steeplejack: Do you box?

  147. 147
    JasonF says:

    Brooks is right. The Democrats should focus on something thoroughly noncontroversial. How about hurricane relief. I mean, what kind of psychopath could possibly oppose that?

  148. 148
    Yutsano says:

    @efgoldman: Mon Dieu. Oboe players make the best tuba chicks in existence. Giving them a clarinet? Insanity I tells ya!

  149. 149
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Corner Stone: It’s a fucking fascinating historical period. Transitional from medieval to modern times.

  150. 150
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @efgoldman: I married someone who liked Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan, and Nickelback. In my defense, she was really hot. It lasted only seven years. Nickelback should have been a sign.

  151. 151
    ulee says:

    I play the guitar.

  152. 152
    Yutsano says:

    @efgoldman: This is forgivable ONLY if you give them mallets and they have keyboard experience. Otherwise college snare players run them out on rails.

  153. 153
    Corner Stone says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Well, my balls are pretty fucking fascinating as well. And I can guarantee you that you’d make a better living studying them than getting a PhD in Ren History.

  154. 154
    Steeplejack says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I box and then I drink, as it is supposed to be.

    ETA: And I, too, play(ed) the guitar. That Gibson link set my heart aflutter as I checked out a couple of dream guitars. For me it would be the L5 CES (Wes Montgomery) or the Byrdland.

  155. 155
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    As long as we are on music, dig this. Just found it.

    @Steeplejack: That is good and clean and true in the rain.

  156. 156
    Darkrose says:

    @Corner Stone: I would probably do exactly what I’m doing now: get a job based on my technical skills that has no relation to my degree. Or go off and teach somewhere about race in Renaissance Italy.

    Then I realized that I’d have to be around the same annoying faculty that I bitch about now–and worse, I might become one of the annoying faculty that I bitch about.

  157. 157
    Corner Stone says:

    I’ve always wondered – why didn’t Ludacris become a major movie and TV star actor?
    Oh, wait. No, I never wondered that.

  158. 158
    ulee says:

    I should say I played the guitar and piano. But I was never very good. I could play rythym and I wrote alot of songs, which I think are good but I never went anywhere with them because I am very isolated. But my lyrics are good. I’m 47 and I’ve got a trunkload of them. I always liked the combination of lyrics of melody and the way that lyrics could mean as much as word when they are just making a sound. To me, it’s Dylan, or the Beatles, or Nirvana.

  159. 159
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Corner Stone: I think we both would be happier if I studied Ren Hist.

  160. 160
    Steeplejack says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Man, that Stones bit is from seriously deep in the archives.

    While I was over at YouTube I picked up this: Wes Montgomery, “Four on Six.”

  161. 161
    Corner Stone says:

    @ulee: You ever think about writing opening musical sequences for shows on Nickelodeon?

  162. 162
    Donut says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I bought my Les Paul in 1998 for $1,000. It lived with me on the road for the next several years. It has survived smokey punk rock dives, alcohol spills, buckets of sweat, some blood, extreme temperature changes, getting dropped and kicked over and slammed down on stage in disgust. That ’59 remake is a beauty, for sure. But it hasn’t lived. I wouldn’t trade my ’98 Les Paul for anything.

    Save my family, there is no thing I love more than that guitar.. Well, except my ’94 Tele. That one went around the world with me.

  163. 163
    Corner Stone says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Well, you may be happier, but that wasn’t what I said.
    And what of my balls? Would you forsake them for your selfish desire for happiness?

  164. 164
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Steeplejack: the version of “Waiting on a Friend” is interesting, given the later hit. But, for me it was worth it just for “Drift Away.”

  165. 165
    ulee says:

    @Corner Stone: No, I had not@<a href="#comment-4147944" rel="nofollow: CornerStone. I know you are being funny but you don’t know what you are talking about.

  166. 166
    Corner Stone says:

    @ulee: What do you mean? If not Nickelodeon then maybe Disney XD?

  167. 167
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Donut: I just want a cherry burst Les Paul. Doesn’t have to be the ’59 replica. I am not good enough for one with a real history though.

  168. 168
  169. 169
    Steeplejack says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    “Waiting on a Friend” is probably my favorite “later period” Stones song.

    (Later period = after they went into “Dead at 30, buried at 80” fossil mode.)

  170. 170
    ulee says:

    Jesus, that response is a mess. Corner Stone. I’ve got a bunch of songs that I’ve written over the years and I’ve never attempted to have them published or perform them because of my extreme social anxiety. It’s a drag and I’ve learned that it is alright that I cannot do that. It’s just something I’ve learned to live with. I’ve lost my job due to this disorder, if I can call it that. Whatever. I can write it, but cant deliver it. Oh, Well.

  171. 171
  172. 172
    piratedan says:

    @Steeplejack: I dunno, I thought “sparks will fly” was pretty good for a bunch of old farts…

  173. 173
    Steeplejack says:


    They average about one or two good songs an album. My choice from Voodoo Lounge would be “Sparks Will Fly” as well. But the bad songs are so bad that it almost calls into question their earlier work.

  174. 174
    Corner Stone says:

    @ulee: Hmmm, well maybe kid’s networks aren’t your style then. It seems like the major networks roll out new shows every season. Maybe they need some new material.

  175. 175
    piratedan says:

    @Steeplejack: I’d agree, but considering the quality of the older stuff (i.e. my faves were 12X5 and Out of Their Heads) anything that resembles it is a bonus. Hell by the time VL was made, they had to be 30+ years in the biz and 20+ albums or so, sometimes it’s hard to find that spark.

  176. 176
    ulee says:

    Corner Stone. Thanks for your understanding. I’ll do the best I can.

  177. 177
    Donut says:

    I get ya, I’m just saying I always want to gravitate to instruments that have marks of character. I would be scared to really play hard on that ’59 remake. I would be afraid of damaging it. It’s too pretty.

    Soeaking of finishes, my first guitar was a cheaply produced Gibson Melody Maker that I got for $100 in 1987. I traded that in, with a whole lotta cash, for a stunnig and lovingly worn in 68 Gibson SG with the most beautiful deep starburst finish I’ve ever seen. And it was in great shape, the finish had held up beautifully over 20 years. The thing was three years older than me. I stupidly traded that in, in the early 90s, for a really nice, brand new Strat, when I was tired of the SG temporarily and wanted to round out my options. I was scared of that new Strat, like I would be that remake. It needed to go out in the world and get some bruises from someone else. We were mis-matched. I regret letting that SG go, though I probably still would never play it even if I owned it, and I have not played for money on a regular basis for 10 years now.

    God, this must be boring to read. I’ll stop now.

  178. 178
  179. 179
    Steeplejack says:


    True dat.

  180. 180
    Linnaeus says:


    it’s possible that I’m a little bitter and cynical. Working in tech support will do that.

    *nods* Oh, I get it. Any sort of job that entails, for lack of a better word, “customer service” can wear on you.

  181. 181
    ulee says:

    You can tell Mary I quit my job again
    You can tell May I say good luck
    You can tell Mary I’m playing dead again
    You can tell Mary you knew damn well that I was
    a possum before you picked me up

    You were in the city with a friend or two
    I was in the country just building bombs
    You can tell Mary what I do to you
    You can tell Mary that I was fast asleep
    when the battle lines were being drawn

    Well, I been thinking about you day and night and I decided that I’m not impressed.
    You can tell Mary that the lies were flying fast and furious when I confessed.

    You can tell Mary she gets your night and day
    You can tell Mary she gets your heart
    Slip into the city, go and grow old, thats your penalty,
    forward march

    Well, I been thinking about it night and day and I decided that I’m not impressed.
    Be sure to be tell Mary what you were thinking about when you and you’re friends were undresssed.

  182. 182
    ulee says:

    You put that to a punk rock melody(I’ve got it down) and it’s one of the best songs you’ve ever heard. Put that in your condescending sock and stuff it, Corner Stone.

  183. 183
  184. 184
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @mclaren: The spectacle of watching the Republican party go insane and disintegrate may prove delightful…until you realize that this political Hindenberg disaster covers up and legitimizes Obama’s and the Democrat party’s veer into extremist lawlessness not seen since the days of Pol Pot’s Year Zero.

    Wow, it’s like the perfect mclaren post. The zen if you will.

    McLaren, if you are still at university, they have counselors you can go see for free when school is in session. I think you really, really need to talk to one. (They’re not just there for students with suicidal ideation.) I’m really worried about you.

  185. 185
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @eric: When my cat pays a bill, I will call that cohabitating.

  186. 186
    kay says:

    I think Republicans are kidding themselves thinking their base will go along with a 180 on immigration.
    Republicans here are still specifically and vehemently anti-immigrant. They’re not shy about revealing it, either. The powers that be may have decided that immigration reform is the way to a national majority but the base are still in 2006, ranting about amnesty and how immigrants are “taking” all the social services.

  187. 187
    xian says:

    @Darkrose: “terminate the call” is a threat? did you say “…with extreme prejudice”?

  188. 188
    xian says:

    @Suzanne: yeah, I’m starting to be able to tell when it fully abandons its meds. the rhetorical flourishes go to 11.

  189. 189
    Kropadope says:

    David Brooks lies about Democrats’ willingness to reform entitlements and pretends Republican craziness was a political decision by Democrats to win the House back at all costs. This is news?

  190. 190
    mainmati says:

    @Darkrose: Appreciate your situation and agree the other guy is a jerk. That said, Anthropology is a very viable income-earning field, especially those who choose to go into international development working in countries where anthropological methodologies are very useful. Barista or bartender is not at all the inevitable outcome of an Anthropology degree.

Comments are closed.