I Look Forward To The Moral Awakening of Joe Lieberman

Seriously, is there something in the water this week? First Joe Kleindiscovers that Republicans are assholes. Now David Brooks (hat tip reader S)discovers that Bush’s response to Katrina kind of blew. Preceding this, Peter Beinart managed not to make a total ass out of himself and it’s been a while sinceAndrew Sullivan said anything nastier than“McCain’s calling you a cunt because he loves you!” Can the recanting of Holy Joe be far behind?

Is itWhoa The Ledge I’ve Jumped Off Looks Good From Down Here Week? InternationalWhat Am I Doing Here And Who Is This Underage Goat Day? The AnnualIt’s Not Mine Officer, I Was Just Holding This Opinion For A Friend Festival? AGeneral Asshole Amnesty perhaps, a kind ofReturn Your Used Pseudo-Tough-Guy Crap And Get Store Credit event? Is there some holiday that would explain the parade of people who have been enabling the biggest jackasses in this country to be the even bigger jackasses they’ve always wanted to be suddenly coming to the conclusion that maybe that wasn’t all such a good idea?

I’d like to welcome it. I’d like it to be a happy thing, folks like this coming to Jesus. I’d like to lionize them for their recent stands in favor of, you know, sense. I’d like to use the “even the conservative David Brooks” construct, and quote them approvingly, and say I’m glad they’ve come around. I’d like to forgive Andrew Sullivan for his cracks about the decadent left in its secure enclaves on the coasts mounting a fifth column after 9/11. I’d like to put behind me an entire book Peter Beinart wrote about how hippies are to blame for the beatings they took, which would never have happened if they had just worn ties and baked cakes for the protest marches. I’d like to let go all those times Joe Klein sat back and enjoyed the Republican rogering the country was getting because being a sardonically amused spectator at the country-razing made him a more enlightened human being than I. I’d like to ignore how David Brooks has built a brand out of making me and my friends and my family somehow foreign to “real Americans.” I’d like to let it all go, let bygones be bygones, welcome these newly enconscienced faux-moderates back to the fold of the most of us who are shocked and appalled and outraged at what we have become as a nation, and determined as hell to change it. I’d like to tell them all is forgiven, and glory in having them on “my” side at last.

I can’t, though. I’m sorry. I’m pissed off. I’ve been pissed off for seven years and I remain pissed off. I do not forgive. I do not forget. I do not WANT these people anywhere near me no matter what they’re saying now, and it’s because of what they said then, and I should be a bigger person than this, but I’m not.

And you wanna know why? Because allowing them to drift from side to side depending on which way the Manly Smelling Strong Leadership is blowing is part of what let us get into the mess we’re in. Allowing them back into the room disrespects everybody who was right from the beginning and took unbelievable amounts of shit for it from the very likes of Beinart and Brooks and Klein, everybody who was told to sit down, don’t yell so loud, you can’t say that right now, that’s unseemly, all the mealy-mouthed condescending fuckwitted nonsense anybody who had the temerity to think out loud got shoved in his face. In a way the Freepi were actually morally superior, because they, with their screaming about traitors and Dhimmi and whatever else they’re on about, at least gave the DFH’s in this country the respect of opposition. Klein and Brooks and their ilk treated anti-war activists like children, suitable for pats on the head when “appropriately” behaved and righteous spankings when speaking out of turn.

Allowing them to be our friends when they want, giving them a hand up the ladder back to respectability among the smarter human beings in the country makes it okay that they were fucking amoral assholes and it makes it okay for them to become fucking amoral assholes again next time some part of the country gets terroristed up or a war gets started or somebody scary moves in down the street. The stupidity then is part of their sensibility now, and I can’t separate the two. I don’t want to move on.

A broken clock may be right twice a day but the point of that expression is that the clock is still broken.


17 thoughts on “I Look Forward To The Moral Awakening of Joe Lieberman

  1. Testify A. Testify!
    They may be assholes but when it comes to survival they’re just as crafty as an old lion.
    Brooks and his ilk walked up to the Bus to the Future and there weren’t any seats reserved for them. So, they’re trying to say the ‘right’ things, make their prose more palatable to the very same people they’ve been haranguing for seven years.
    To that I say – Tough Tits on a Mongoose!
    When we needed them to back us up, they failed. They coddled and fawned over Bush and his crimes at every turn. They had the column space but used it to insult us and demean us and chastise our issues when they should have been bringing Bush and Cheney to account for their high crimes and misdemeanors.
    When the new administration comes to power and these tired old fucks start fawning over the new breed of leadership, we should give them the bum’s rush. David Brooks who? Joe who?
    The only legacy they deserve is a sad, lonely footnote in Wikipedia.

  2. I love you.
    Thank you.
    Remember that old science experiment that talks about how mice get MORE addicted in inconsistant reward than to constant reward or constant no reward?
    If we occassionally get a nugget of correctness from Klein or Brooks then they can maintain the fiction that they are redeemable. And we can remain addicted and keep reading him, hoping that some day he will reward us again.
    I’m seeing the same thing with a few people on RW radio. They aren’t totally pro-McCain. Hannity was talking about how he doesn’t agree with McCain. And then, when they are challenged they can say, “I’ve disagreed with McCain several times on this program in the areas of immigration!” That is supposed to burnish their indepentant credentials.
    And as the pundits and the talk radio people moderate themselves they want us to forget all the horrible things that they said. “Those things I said were YEARS ago. They are old!” Well in some cases they never apologized for it. In some cases they did, as in the “I’m sorry you were offended.” bs.
    The bit about being treated as a child really gets me.
    I’ve been there before in “real life.” with an old boss. In this case I was right. Morally, ethically, financially, and legally. They thought I was a stupid kid because I was funny and not serious.
    I was dead serious and if they weren’t going to do the right thing then it was going to hurt them. They underestimated me because they treated me as a child. Then I turned around and demanded justice. My ducks were in a row and I won the day. I also knew that I could have gone farther, but I didn’t because I had proved my point. And they never tried to pull that crap on me again. On the other hand, with some of these pundits they will never get the message totally. Because it will require them to have a David Brock level total turn around.
    One thing I’ve figured out is that fighting people in the “word biz” (like pundits or talk radio people) is hard because they will enlist people who don’t agree with them just to defend their right to talk and say anything.
    Pundits want to keep it in the relmn of “civilized debate” that they can control and alway win. Think about how Rush ALWAYS controls the box with is radio show. If they don’t control it with not allowing people on, they control it with bullying tactics. Arguing with Hannity on his radio show is hard, unless you are a professional debater who can fight in the style of the host. And each host has weaknesses. I’ve heard Hannity bested. I’ve seen O’Reilly bested. But after the besting is over they go right back to the same stuff. They have NOT radically transformed their thinking. You will never hear “You are right caller. I was wrong. I have changed my mind and I promise to never again say X about Y.” That doesn’t happen. They mock the caller who bested them when they hang up and go about saying the old thing. It’s all entertainment for them.
    And if you successful kick their ass wordwise they just dismiss you because you are not legit. Nobody who disagrees with them is legit in their mind. If they are legit they are “liberal” which as we all know is “biased”.
    And there are people who ARE legit, they let them get away with this sh*t because they don’t want to go and aruge with them. You know it would be nice of their was some university professor (the old keepers of the legit) would would ENJOY going on these shows and kicking the snot out of them. But of course if they did it once they would never get on again. Most like to be above the fray and talk with “serious people” who don’t have an audience of 16 million.
    Personally I’d like Cliff Schecter, Sam Seder, Joe Conason and Thom Hartman to take on these bozos every day. Instead of the civilized Mark Shields on the News hour, I’d like to see civilized Glenn Greenwalk argue with David Brooks and not only make a different point, but destroy Brooks every single time he opens his mouth. I think it would be more entertaining, but the “adults” in charge don’t really want that kind of discussion because it would upset their buddy Brooks.
    That is why I like to take the fight out side the content into other areas because if we talk content the media will just play “On the one hand, on the other hand”
    Like I said regarding fighting Feith, we want to fight these people we go for the area they are weak. Look at his financial dealings outside of the Georgetown contract guidelines. Because he will have protected himself on his content. Then when he is talking about how he violated his contract, which got him fired, the media can bring up other stuff, but he is not standing on a “free speech” ground or a “national security” platform. He’s just a greedy crook. A common criminal who got contracts with outside groups without getting the approval of his bosses in his department.
    Think about how they got Al Capone. Taxes.
    We know we are right and can win the argument. But if they won’t even let us onto their battlefield then we just move to another battlefield that they don’t have a leg to stand on. (I’m tempted to say, “That’s the Spocko way.” but that’s a little bit too self agrandizing. When I start referring to myself in the third person it’s time to lighten up.

  3. I wonder if Lieberman has gone too far to go back?
    You know, fool me once, well you can’t fool me again.

  4. On the other hand, (heh, heh), I used to despise Arianna Huffington, back when she was a total right wing idiot. But, today she is a very effective writer for liberal causes. So, maybe Brooks, Klein and Beinhart will some day …nah, I can’t even type that.

  5. Thought experiment time: If Noam Chomsky became a neocon tomorrow, what would the (other) neocons do with him? I’d be willing to bet he’d have to
    1) humiliate himself on international television (they love doing this to people, have you noticed?)
    2) write several books repudiating all of his earlier work
    3) resign his position at MIT (even though he teaches linguistics, not politics)
    4) publicly “kiss the ring” of whichever neocon luminaries decreed it
    In other words, he’d have to make some serious bones before they’d even consider accepting him as one of theirs. And even then, he’d still suffer from the stigma of having been “wrong” for too long.
    I think that’s instructive. Me, I still don’t trust Arianna Huffington, because she still seems to have a vast number of unexamined prejudices (she’s quite the female misogynist, for one), and I’d like her more if she didn’t give so much of her soapbox to woo-woo medical quackery. (Christ, it’s bad enough the left gets tarred with the hippy-dippy newage — rhymes with “sewage” — bullshit brush without her helping it along.)
    Pursuant to my next point, while I’m really not about ideological purity, we can afford to lose certain people. Flap-in-the-wind faux moderates, antivaccinationist dipshits and antifeminists in liberals’ clothing are right up there on the list for me…

  6. In the past, these parasites have always been forgiven, allowed to stroll back up to the trough and invited to sup once again.
    I say no more! Ban them from the discourse. Never reference anything they say or do. Shun them like a Puritan adulterer. If Bobo Brooks or Broder, or any of the other trad media tools want to spit and piss about the DFH’s ruining their afternoon suaree’ with baby goose pate’ and champagne fountains well, let them eat shi..er…cake.
    There is a price for our attention, our loyalty. We no longer merely suggest that you acknowledge the truth. Now we demand that it be foremost in your work. If our media can’t do their fucking jobs and take on any leader who can’t abide by the facts, then it is our duty to rub their collective noses right in the middle of it.
    But that’s just me.

  7. you had me at “I Was Just Holding This Opinion For A Friend Festival”…brilliant, as always.
    Gosh, I am not feeling so alone.

  8. heh
    Oh, and as for pantywaist Brooks, I am sure we can find something for him to do in the clubhouse…the latrines always need cleaning…

  9. Don’t forget Ben Stein “Rich people should pay more taxes” in last Sunday’s NY Times.

  10. Some things are truly unforgiveable and even if they could be forgiven, these fair weather ‘moderates’ could never be trusted. Well said A.

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