A re-introduction and a peace offering

While I’d like to think my internet persona is such that, once experienced, it can never be forgotten, I’m willing to entertain the idea that this is not in fact true.

So with that in mind, and recognizing it’s been probably just about a year since I last guested hereabouts — then, as now, at the invitation of the inestimable Doug J — allow me to reintroduce myself.

My name is Elias Isquith, and in my free time I write about the by turns mundane and fantastic world of American politics, usually with a focus on ideology and the Left. I’m one of the lefty contributors at The League of Ordinary Gentlemen (Perhaps you guys have heard of it? I wonder if you’d get along…) and I’ve also had freelance work in The Atlantic, Salon, Jacobin, and The New Inquiry

In addition to all of this, I have a cat. Calamity Jane. You can her see below, in a picture taken during her morning routine. (It’s a grueling routine.) Please consider this something of a peace offering from your new guest…as well as a window into her very soul:

IMG 0509

Now with all the formal pleasantries dispensed with, I can focus on giving you fine people real material to yell about. In that regard, I promise you nothing less than my full effort. And if all else fails, you can always just yell at me. Everybody wins!

102 replies
  1. 1
    ellie says:

    One of my cats is always sticking his tongue out. I have yet to capture a photo of it.

  2. 2
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Declare your fealty to Obama, interloper!

  3. 3
    Comrade Jake says:

    Welcome! I’ve checked out the League of Ordinary Gentlemen a few times. It seems like a decent blog, but I don’t think it’s all that compatible with the bunch here.

  4. 4
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    In that regard, I promise you nothing less than my full effort. And if all else fails, you can always just yell at me.

    How it really works.

  5. 5
    Brother Machine Gun of Desirable Mindfulness (fka AWS) says:

    Perhaps you guys have heard of it? I wonder if you’d get along…

    No, we don’t.

    Also, your recent piece in Salon is contrary to all evidence of what the GOP’s doing, and based on the writings of a very few GOP pundits. Would you care to explain how the idea of bringing back compassionate conservatism under another name is supposed to work when they keep doing the stupid shit they are doing?

  6. 6
    mistermix says:

    Welcome and good luck!

  7. 7
    Sawgrass Stan says:

    Nice cat. Welcome (back) aboard. Now give us something to yell about.

  8. 8
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Comrade Jake: Elias isn’t the first LOOGy here. It’s been fun before.

  9. 9

    Everyone quick, sharpen your knives!

  10. 10
    Shakezula says:

    Crash helmet? Knee and elbow pads? Kevlar Underpants?

  11. 11
    piratedan says:

    so are you a firebagger, part of the poniless brigade, Freddie wannabee or Alan Colmes?

  12. 12

    Look’s like meat’s back on the menu, boys!

  13. 13
    c u n d gulag says:

    Welcome back!

    Oh, and if you ever turn your back to us commenters here, be sure whatever shirt you wear has a Kevlar back.

  14. 14
    Brother Machine Gun of Desirable Mindfulness (fka AWS) says:

    Cute cat, btw.

  15. 15
    Comrade Jake says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent): I know, I was trying to be diplomatic.

  16. 16
    Mike E says:

    Mmm, pie.

  17. 17
    Citizen_X says:


    Oh, and why is it we’re supposed to hate you, again?

  18. 18

    For some reason the name of the blog, League of Ordinary Gentlemen has always bothered me. Too exclusive, women and peasants need not apply. Judging from the comments above is EI a compassionate conservative? That’s an oxymoron and anyone who believes in it, is just a moron.

    I like your cat. She does not seem like a lady and seems to have the right attitude towards you. Plus, she has a great name.

  19. 19
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Comrade Jake: I was just looking for an excuse to type LOOGy. Your comment was my best chance.

  20. 20
    NickT says:

    The LOOG still exists? I thought it had fallen asleep in an overstuffed armchair between David Brooks and Megan McArdle years ago.

  21. 21
  22. 22

    @SatanicPanic: Jackals and hyenas don’t need knives. Fangs and claws are usually enough.

  23. 23
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Christ, that title scared me. I thought Finel or Freddie were back.

  24. 24
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: He got a gig at Bloomberg or something like that.

  25. 25
    NickT says:


    What about his legs? ‘E don’t need those….

  26. 26
    NickT says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    I think ED Kain is at Forbes, writing videogame reviews.

  27. 27
    Rosalita says:

    smart! offering the cat up front; you knew we’d ask. welcome back.

  28. 28
    Eric in nny says:

    I don’t like him already.

  29. 29
    piratedan says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: well in fairness, this can be a very tough audience. It’s great though, when I’ve been wrong (hooboy) it’s been extremely educational (tough love and all of that) and despite the OBOT claims, a lot of facets to supposedly black and white issues are exposed.

  30. 30
    ruemara says:

    Fuck you sideways. And now that the standard BJ greeting has been offered, welcome. Using that a pet as a kitty shield is a nice touch. I’m sure we are all waiting for your first real effort.

  31. 31
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @NickT: That’s right. I knew it was off somewhere.

  32. 32
    NickT says:


    Doesn’t the standard greeting include a rusty agricultural implement – or was that dropped in an attempt to be bipartisan and encourage civility?

  33. 33
    bill d says:

    Please save me some time, as I am a busy man, am I supposed to like you or hate you?

    Thank you for your time and I look forward to, or cringe at the very thought of, our futrure interactions.

  34. 34
    beltane says:

    We may hate you but we will never hate your cat. Welcome aboard!

  35. 35
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @beltane: I always thought we were more the type of people that would never hate a FPer unless we met them in person, but would trash anything they said.

  36. 36
    elisabeth says:


    LOL (literally)

  37. 37
    Mike E says:

    Reminds me of when Pete Rose tried to make peace with the bleacher bums in Wrigley by tossing them a bucketful of souvenir baseballs before playing outfield. Heh.

  38. 38
    PurpleGirl says:

    Welcome back, Elias. Nice cat, love her name.

  39. 39
    kc says:

    Nice cat!

  40. 40
    Comrade Mary says:

    Hi, Elias. You have a lovely cat. But I think my (sadly departed) trio could teach her a few things.

  41. 41
    Maude says:

    Today, in 1964, the Civil Rights bill survived the Senate filibuster.

  42. 42
    Citizen_X says:

    @NickT: Yes, I believe the standard Juicer greeting is now just a simple punch in the neck. For civility’s sake.

  43. 43
    Comrade Mary says:

    (Oh man, that link also includes a pic of the tower John’s brother and father built for Speak and Whisper. Such well-loved cats.)

  44. 44
    Tone in DC says:

    Take a guess here. Calamity Jane looks like a tuxedo cat. From what I can gather, these cats are very expressive and loyal. Whereas Tunch is just plain obstreperous.

  45. 45
    Punchy says:

    Last day for the VRA! Come Friday, you’ll need a Porsche and homes in the Hamptons to vote in Georgia.

  46. 46
    danimal says:

    Welcome. You’re a foolish idiot with crazy, impractical ideas (whatever they are), but a smart one who knows that starting a FP gig with a pet pic is very important around here.

    Looking forward to the customary hazing ritual for newcomers.

  47. 47
    Ash Can says:

    The look on Calamity Jane’s face is priceless. I like her attitude. It looks as though, if you could translate into English what was going through her mind at the time, the words would sear a hole in the computer screen.

  48. 48

    @Comrade Mary: Which link? Can you share?

  49. 49
    Dee Loralei says:

    Welcome back, love the cat and her name. My aunt has a rescue dog who has earned her name, Calamity Jane.

  50. 50

    @Tone in DC: He is not fat, he is floofy and he is in shape, round is a shape.

  51. 51
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    Welcome back, Elias. Nice cat. Now try a Google search for the words “kitten skull fuck” and see what the first two returns are.

    Good luck.

  52. 52
    Comrade Mary says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Sorry, I meant the link to the blog post where my cats showed up also showed a photo of the cat tower. Here’s the link again.

  53. 53
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: Psst — don’t use quotes for the desired results.

  54. 54
    Narcissus says:

    That cat is high.

  55. 55
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Comrade Mary:

    Hmm, okay. I always thought that quotes were required in a sentence if you are referring to a specific word or words. Is this an internet convention or has my ignorance of grammar been revealed, again?

  56. 56
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    Somebody light the matoko_chan help signal.

    She chased the last loogie off this site like a mob going after Special Tim after catching him in the shower with a ten-year old boy.

  57. 57
    Brother Machine Gun of Desirable Mindfulness (fka AWS) says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: it’s actually “skull fuck a kitten” – the exact phrase.

  58. 58
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: Your choice of quotes was perfectly valid as part of written English. [Puts on librarian hat] But English punctuation and search logic don’t always play nicely together. I’ve found that some people consider quotes to be literally part of the search string if displayed, while others ignore it.

    I just use italics or bold instead of quotes when I refer to a free text search in order to avoid causing confusion.

    EDIT: Yep. Using a slightly different string, as Brother Machine Gun demonstrated, would give great results with or without quotes. Quotes are powerful! All hail quotes!

  59. 59
    ira-NY says:

    Did you name your cat after Hamsher?

  60. 60
    Xenos says:

    @Mike E:

    Reminds me of when Pete Rose tried to make peace with the bleacher bums in Wrigley by tossing them a bucketful of souvenir baseballs before playing outfield. Heh.

    Is there a video of that somewhere?

  61. 61
    MomSense says:

    I like the cat! Welcome back although it just feels like plain, old welcome to me since I don’t remember you or wasn’t here often when you were posting.

    Speaking of infrequent posters, where did that Bernard fella go? Not saying I miss him but curious about his absence. Did Tunch eat him?

  62. 62
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Brother Machine Gun of Desirable Mindfulness (fka AWS): @Comrade Mary:

    Thank you both. Setting off a search term with bold text seems sensible. I learned the habit of dropping short words from a search term back in the days of Inktomi because early search engines automatically dropped words like “a,” “and,” “the,” from your query.

  63. 63

    The LOOG weaponized civility but Elias puts out some good work. Welcome back. Your dreams were your ticket out Elias.

  64. 64
    eemom says:

    That does it. I’m e-mailing Cole that I want toko-loko for a FPer. Who’s with me?

  65. 65
    comrade scott's agenda of rage says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    Jackals and hyenas don’t need knives. Fangs and claws are usually enough.

    I’ll just fling poo.

  66. 66
    Tone in DC says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    Uhhh… That isn’t it.
    The word means unruly, boisterous or uncontrolled.

  67. 67
    comrade scott's agenda of rage says:


    Did you name your cat after Hamsher?

    Where’s a “like” button when you need one?

  68. 68
    srv says:

    Libertarians are so boring, but oh, here’s something for Truthers can Unite on!

    here is a renewed effort to reopen the investigation that downed TWA Flight 800 off the coast of New York in 1996.

    Former investigators on Wednesday called on the National Transportation Safety Board to re-examine the cause, saying new evidence points to the often-discounted theory that a missile strike may have downed the jumbo jet.

    The Obama-Clinton Ninja Vince Foster axis to finally be toppled with the truth.

    Elias, you troll this, and I’ll redirect the truthers here.

  69. 69
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    No one expects the Balloon Juice Inquisition!

  70. 70

    @NickT: We ain’t ‘ad nothin’ but maggoty bread for three stinkin’ days!

  71. 71
    NickT says:


    Maybe hawking a LOOGie onto the front page is Cole’s way of flushing matoko_chan out of cover?

  72. 72
    NickT says:


    Yeah! Why can’t we have some meat?

  73. 73
    taylormattd says:

    @NickT: she’d never make it under cover

  74. 74
    Villago Delenda Est says:


    Oh my gawd, not this bullshit again. I remember trying to explain to fucktards on USENET that they were seriously deluded with their missile strike theory…supposedly entire ships’ crews were sworn to secrecy…like that every happens in any military organization. The fear of the leadership trying to cover things up is that some fucking private will blurt out the truth to an inspector…and usually does.

  75. 75
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    And now…the comfy chair!

  76. 76
    Joey Maloney says:

    Are you that [BONERS] guy?

  77. 77
    A Humble Lurker says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:
    We have no need for comfy chairs.

  78. 78
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Were you the ombudsman, or was that the other guy?

  79. 79
    Mike E says:

    @Xenos: No video, had to be in the 60’s before he played infield. He thot he could placate them, but only gave them things to throw at him. I guess he files this one with his Cooperstown induction speech.

  80. 80
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @A Humble Lurker:

    The soft pillows will be enough, you think?

  81. 81

    @Tone in DC: Oops, I had it confused with avoirdupois, English fail.

  82. 82

    @comrade scott’s agenda of rage: That works too.Ordinary or not I am sure, gentlemen would find that behavior horrifying.

  83. 83
    ruemara says:

    @NickT: It is prior to 9 am. One must encourage civility at such an uncivilized hour.

  84. 84
    Violet says:

    Welcome back. Your kitty is cute. Love that photo and that pink tongue.

    Can’t wait to see how another LOOGer does here. The first one self-titled himself our Ombudsman and it didn’t go so well from there.

  85. 85
    Villago Delenda Est says:


    Particularly when he posted something that was ripped to shreds by the commentariat and he eventually admitted that the ripping to shreds was fully justified.

  86. 86
    Violet says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Yeah. Was that something about a car and gas mileage or something? I vaguely remember something about that where he backtracked in segments, Sullivan style.

  87. 87
    A Humble Lurker says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:
    Nah. It was a reference to something else. Don’t worry about it.

  88. 88
    Yatsuno says:

    @Violet: ED threw up nonsense at regular intervals and got called to task for it numerous times. Of course we’re a bunch of vicious jackals so really he had zero chance. And then there was matoko-chan. She LURVED her some ED!

  89. 89
    Lurking Canadian says:

    @Violet: If I remember correctly, that was “Everybody knows liberals are always in favour of more regulations, but let me use my contrarian libertarian powers to instruct you about some BAD regulations!”

    It did not go well.

  90. 90
    Felonius Monk says:

    Said Simple Simon to the Pie-Man, “Let me see your wares.”

  91. 91
    West of the Rockies says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Maybe Freddie was a great guy, but I did find his writing very irksome. It was loaded with qualifiers, and if it was possible to say a thing in ten words, he’d do it in 40 (doing his best to send us to arcane resources for definitions all the while).

  92. 92
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @A Humble Lurker:

    Now you’ve got my curiosity aroused. What was the something else it was a reference to?

  93. 93
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Lurking Canadian:

    Like that idiot Yglesias who rails about licensing of beauticians, because he doesn’t quite grasp that they use potentially harmful chemicals that, if not applied in a specific manner that requires training, could injure people in horrible ways.

    A lot of supposedly “pointless” regulations actually have a fucking point if you’re not an ignorant ideologically driven asswipe who is too fucking lazy to do your fucking homework and find out why, precisely, these regulations were put into place.

  94. 94
    A Humble Lurker says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:
    Dr. Who. Got into it fairly recently and I’ve been watching old episodes so I’m caught up by the 12th Doctor. I know it doesn’t matter as much with this show as it might with another but eh. I’m like that.

    Anyway, the Doctor is conversing with a Weeping Angel who’s using a dead man’s voice over an intercom:

    The Doctor: It’s nice in here. Consoles, comfy chairs, a forest. How’s things with you?
    Evil Dude: The Angels are feasting, sir. Soon we’ll be able to absorb enough power to consume this vessel. This world and all the stars, and worlds beyond.
    The Doctor: Well, we’ve got comfy chairs, did I mention?
    Evil Dude: We have no need of comfy chairs.
    The Doctor: (stage whisper) I made him say “comfy chairs.”

  95. 95
  96. 96
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    You son of a bitch, you owe me money!

  97. 97
    kdaug says:

    Nice cat. Fingers strumming.

    Lighting those fuses anytime soon?

  98. 98
    Alien Radio says:

    So DougJ Is trolling the commentariat again?

  99. 99
    Alien Radio says:

    Also. I DEMAND the return of Matoko_Chan, because next thing you know EDK will be back.

  100. 100
    Cassidy says:

    So, dead thread, but Elias, this place is full of assholes, miscreants, condescending assholes, firebagger emoprogs, a couple of real c**** and a our very own pedophile apologizing, rape enabling pile of shit. So, unless you’re the lowest scoring med student in a psych program with no other choices, you should probably pass this fun house by.

  101. 101
    NobodySpecial says:

    @eemom: No one with a brain that works.

  102. 102

    I always thought Isquith’s “Paul Ryan’s Debt to Barry Goldwater—Who’d Be Mortified by Paul Ryan”, though short, was one the best, most insightful pieces written during the 2012 election season.

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