All the jim jims in this town

I’ve never followed New York City politics much, but the discussion of Ed Koch put me in mind of this fascinating New York magazine piece on Eric Breindel, a neocon heroin addict who trashed “homeless people, poor people, gay people, the mentally ill, single mothers” in his New York Post column in the 80s and 90s.

Everyone’s in this piece: Pat Moynihan (Breindel sucked up to him while at college and became one of his staffers — remember Saint Pat was tight with neocons back in the day), Jim Cramer (who beat Breindel out to become editor of the Harvard Crimson), Rupert Murdoch (whom Breindel convinced to support Giuliani in the 1993 mayor race), Arianna Huffington (who used to lunch with him), Katharine Graham’s granddaughter Lally (whom Breindel married), Roger Ailes, Barbara Walters, Charlie Rose (all at his funeral).

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42 replies
  1. 1
    schrodinger's cat says:

    The MSM is certainly an inbred lot, like European royalty of yore.

  2. 2
    The Dangerman says:

    …a neocon heroin addict…

    This would explain quite a lot.

    I’m probably repeating from posts in dead threads, but we’ve finally hit peak wingnut (Nazi’s = sense). I wonder how many Jewish voters took notice?

  3. 3
    shortstop says:

    And I guess that I just don’t know.

  4. 4
    PeakVT says:

    Never heard of Breindel before, but this list of clowns is one of his legacies.

  5. 5
    Doug Galt says:

    @PeakVT:

    That is cruel. Even a neocon heroin addict deserves better than that.

  6. 6
    Steeplejack says:

    @Doug Galt:

    [. . .] Pat Moynihan (Breindel sucked him to sucked up to him while at college and became one of his staffers [. . .].

    Fix’d? Not sure what you were going for there.

  7. 7
    WereBear says:

    Small circles, indeed. And I am familiar with NY lunching.

    Really, sticking up for the Nazis? At long last, have they no shame?

  8. 8
    Bokonon says:

    I think you want to say that Breindel “sucked [up] to Moyniahn while [Breindel] was in college”.

    Please … just change that. Quickly. While Pat would probably be very amused by the typo, it certainly creates a bad implication.

  9. 9
    BGinCHI says:

    Everyone in that second paragraph has their name in Satan’s book. Or iPad, or whatever he uses.

  10. 10
    liberal says:

    …Katharine Graham’s granddaughter Lally (whom Breindel married)…

    IIRC, she dated Alexander Cockburn, strangely enough.

  11. 11
    WereBear says:

    @BGinCHI: I am convinced Satan uses an Android.

  12. 12
    The Dangerman says:

    @BGinCHI:

    Or iPad, or whatever he uses.

    I’m thinking he’s a Microsoft guy (hey, wouldn’t you be pissed, too, if you got locked into Zune).

  13. 13
    Violet says:

    Pat Moynihan (Breindel sucked him to while at college)

    A passed out Pat Moynihan brought to by Breindel polishing his knob? Ick.

  14. 14
    PeakVT says:

    @Doug Galt: A heroin addict certainly does. But after reading a couple pages of his obit, I think that collection of mendacious hacks is entirely appropriate for Breindel.

  15. 15
    Violet says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    The MSM is certainly an inbred lot, like European royalty of yore.

    Yes they are. It’s sad they are the gatekeepers of what passes as news. I wish I could we we deserve better, but I’m not sure that’s true. I wish we had better newspeople.

  16. 16
    Citizen Alan says:

    That’s a whole lot of electrons wasted on a story that could have been summed up as “Charming Neocon Sociopath Dead at 42.”

  17. 17
    WereBear says:

    @Citizen Alan: The one good thing about that headline; my own life, thus far, beats the pants off that one!

    I’ll take what I can get.

  18. 18
    schrodinger's cat says:

    Speaking of MSM hacks, did anyone catch Jeffrey Brown’s interview of Al Gore? It was hostile, Brown grilled Al Gore, it was an unfriendly and an adversarial interview. I have never seen anyone else get that treatment on snooze hour before.

  19. 19
    schrodinger's cat says:

    @Citizen Alan: Sounds like a male and more sophisticated version of Sarah Palin. The neo-cons sure seem like a gullible lot, will fall for anyone purty who speaks nice to them.

  20. 20
    BGinCHI says:

    @WereBear: Let’s leave Mitt Romney out of this.

  21. 21
    BGinCHI says:

    @The Dangerman: Bill Gates is Satan?

    I’m not denying it’s a possibility.

  22. 22
    NonyNony says:

    Pat Moynihan (Breindel sucked him to while at college

    There’s an image that I will never get out of my head now.

    @Violet:

    A passed out Pat Moynihan brought to by Breindel polishing his knob? Ick.

    Yes. That’s the image.

  23. 23
    Bulworth says:

    @Citizen Alan: Yeah.

    And this:

    After a period of rehabilitation, for his body, his psyche, and his reputation, Breindel signed on at the Post’s editorial page in 1986. And immediately, he came out shooting bullets. Homeless people, poor people, gay people, the mentally ill, single mothers. All were subjected to Breindel’s uncharitable lashings. There were never even subtle shadings in his writing that indicated he was someone who knew what it was like to stumble, to give in to temptation, or simply to suffer from some common human failing. Given his own frailties, even some of his friends had trouble with this.

    I probably should have stopped reading there. We’re told later in the piece that he “stood for something”. Sure. He stood for sticking it to the most vulnerable members of society.

    Good riddance.

  24. 24
    BGinCHI says:

    @Bulworth: I thought the obit just could have been:

    Asshole dies. Funeral rotten with assholes.

  25. 25
    WereBear says:

    @BGinCHI: Bill Gates is Satan?

    It would explain so much.

  26. 26
    kindness says:

    I never read the Post, was out of NY by 77 so much of this is out of my range. I grew up around many kids just like him though. It’s sad he was such an asshole after getting clean.

    Such is life I guess.

  27. 27
  28. 28
    Sly says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    The MSM is certainly an inbred lot, like European royalty of yore.

    To get an entry-level job in “elite” journalism, you’re going to have to live in New York or Washington, D.C. for three to six months while on an unpaid internship. The New York Times offers a paid summer internship, and NBC News recently announced that they’re going to start offering them, but they’re the outliers.

    Not many can afford to live in a major metropolitan area with no income for upwards of half a year and, what’s more, no guarantee of a full-time job when the internship is completed. A significant chunk of those who can’t are going to be legacy hires.

    On an important side note; think of all the groups to which these positions are accessible, and the kind of person who is the target consumer for “elite” journalism starts becoming very clear.

  29. 29
    Boots Day says:

    If I recall, Breindel was also a protege of Martin Peretz at Harvard.

    He supposedly used to tell girls, “You just slept with the first Jewish president.” Too bad he died, or he would have been the first junkie president too.

  30. 30
    Valdivia says:

    too late to the thread but Lally got around. She had a thing with Bibi at some point.

  31. 31
    dr. bloor says:

    Ugh. Thanks for that. I had successfully repressed any memories of Breindel’s existence…now I get a heaping helping of Pricks in the Media Past as well as the ongoing dose of Pricks in the Media Present.

  32. 32
    Jay S says:

    @WereBear: If that’s the case why does *nix have daemons while Windows have services?

  33. 33
    Mike in NC says:

    @PeakVT: Sort of forgot about Michael Kelly. He became a big Bush fan after 9/11 and eagerly covered the invasion of Iraq, where he died in a traffic mishap.

  34. 34
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    Hmm…conservative asshole, drug addict, died young…did he reincarnate as Andrew Breitbart?

  35. 35
    Jay S says:

    @Jay S: Android is a Linux derivative that has its deamons as well.

  36. 36
    Doug Galt says:

    @Mike in NC:

    Kelly’s the worst.

  37. 37
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    From the NY Mag piece:

    Under different circumstances, the mix would have made for a terrific party

    On Satan’s social calendar perhaps. With all their contacts in his ipad

    @Boots Day: Yup, and unsurprisingly:

    All of the speakers, even the pols, kept to the imposed three-to-four-minute time limit. Except Marty Peretz. Distraught over the loss of his friend and unhappy about sharing the moment, the Harvard professor and owner of The New Republic went on for nearly half an hour. When he finished, people were literally fleeing. Pete Hamill whispered to Post columnist Jack Newfield, “Marty Peretz can empty a synagogue faster than a PLO bomb threat.”

  38. 38
    Will says:

    Brendel did the local NY political shows on Sunday mornings, his voice which the article describes as “tremulous” was very distinctive. reminded me of someone during a bad Katherine Hepburn.
    The article also reminded me of Papa Cuomo helping Murdoch getting his license to run the Post again, typical Democrat always playing the frog to the Republican scorpion and always being surprised when they get stung

  39. 39
    woodyNYC says:

    How am I doing?

  40. 40
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @Sly:

    To get an entry-level job in “elite” journalism, you’re going to have to live in New York or Washington, D.C. for three to six months while on an unpaid internship.

    There are a surprising number of paid internships in NYC and DC. But your point is close to the truth. It’s also amazing how many in the elite media are members of the Harvard/Yale good old boys axis, extended out a few schools.

  41. 41
    Sly says:

    @arguingwithsignposts:

    But your point is close to the truth. It’s also amazing how many in the elite media are members of the Harvard/Yale good old boys axis, extended out a few schools.

    Probably because a lot of the entry-level gigs of major publications used to be only offered to Ivy League graduates, and a lot of the ones who got into the business at an early age based on that criteria are still there.

  42. 42
    am says:

    Good article to share, finally got through reading. Useful reminder of how things work.

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