P.J. O’Rourke’s Divorce From Reality Was Not Amicable

I’m just gonna rename this whole blog Stupid Republican Tricks. Via Kos, I see to my disappointment that P.J. O’Rourke is no longerfunny or intelligent. Has wingnuttery infected everything? You’d think they’d have learned.

Mind you, they won’t live in Hyde Park. Those leafy precincts will be reserved for the micromanagers and macro-apparatchiks of liberalism–for Secretary of the Department of Peace Bill Ayers and Secretary of the Department of Fairness Bernardine Dohrn. The formerly independent citizens of our previously self-governed nation will live, as I said, around Hyde Park. They will make what homes they can in the physical, ethical, and intellectual slums of the South Side of Chicago.

The South Side of Chicago is what everyplace in America will be once the Democratic administration and filibuster-resistant Democratic Congress have tackled global warming, sustainability, green alternatives to coal and oil, subprime mortgage foreclosures, consumer protection, business oversight, financial regulation, health care reform, taxes on the “rich,” and urban sprawl. The Democrats will have plenty of time to do all this because conservatism, if it is ever reborn, will not come again in the lifetime of anyone old enough to be rounded up by ACORN and shipped to the polling booths.

Number one, as someone with a great deal of loyalty to the South Side, fuck you hard, P.J.Hyde Park is on the South Side. Dumbass. Have an intern bring you a map along with your fourth scotch of the morning. And we can talk about “slums” when we talk about where you presently reside. I’m willing to bet it isn’t anyplace crack dealers ply their trade, nor within spitting distance of public housing of any kind. The South Side encompasses miles and miles and miles of city, including black and white neighborhoods, rich and poor neighborhoods, and to this day having worked in all of them at one time or another I can tell you ain’t nobody ever describedtheir own place as a “slum.” Bitching about liberal elitism while writing off half the population of an entire American city as crap = such classic fail. It’s unworthy of you, P.J. Unworthy.

Number two, what the hell? It’s like he threw Red State in a blender and this is what came out. “Blargle blargle flap flap AYERS blargle!” Conservatism has failed, objectively, because for the past 20 years at least all conservatives wanted to talk about was presidential blowjobs, phony associations, windsurfing, faux-scandalous land deals, and people with askeery names. Conservatism has failed because for the past 40 years all y’all have done is bitch about hippies that have hurt exactly nobody, Ayers and Dohrn notwithstanding, Peej, instead of focusing on things that make people’s lives better and run government usefully and well.

That’s why it sounds like radical socialism when Barack Obama, a reasonably centrist Democrat, says things like, “If you earn your pension you should be able to keep it.” Department of Peace? Department of Fairness? Whose election was he watching? I expect a certain amount of glib and phony bullshit from online squirrel nuts trying to justify their existences to their pathetic investors, from the wannabes that popped up in the past five years to wave their big R thundersticks around, but I expected better from someone my father’s age. I expected, at the least, not to have to tell him to grow the hell up.

I can’t believe I own this man’s books. Time to find a prison library to donate them to, one with wobbly tables that need propping up.


18 thoughts on “P.J. O’Rourke’s Divorce From Reality Was Not Amicable

  1. It wasn’t just conservatives who wanted to talk about presidential blowjobs, windsurfing, and faux-scandalous land deals. The “Liberal Mainstream Media” did an absolutely bang-up job of talking about that stuff all by themselves.
    TheNew York Times created the phony Whitewater “scandal.”
    Every newspaper and cable-news channel in the country panted over the Monica Lewinsky affair like so many dogs in heat.
    TheBoston Globe andThe New Republic were responsible for the gallons of ink spilled over John Kerry’s windsurfing hobby.
    Campaign 2008 was the first time in over a decade that the “Liberal Mainstream Media” didn’t do much of the RNC’s work for them.

  2. Uh, I could go for some “department of peace” and “department of fairness” and you know what–bernardine dohrn would do a fucking bang up job at the d o’ f. Jeebus on a pogo stick look at her resume after she came up from underground. She’s done more for children and families than P J o’rourke ever did.

  3. I will be dipped. You finally saw through this overrated hack.
    Welcome to the reality-based world, Athenae.
    You know you’re a better writer than Gonzo yourself, don’t you?

  4. I caught that “south side” stuff too. Jeez, even northsiders aren’t buying that and haven’t for awhile. Why, northsiders even know they won’t be attacked going to a Sox game, at least outside of the park. If they behave themselves, they won’t get attacked inside either – all that kind of action takes place at Brewers/Cubs games these days. I haven’t read PJ’s stuff for awhile, when did he stop being funny?

  5. Median Household income, US [2003]: $45,016
    Median household income, Hyde Park [2003]: $44,412
    The right liked Hyde Park well enough when Milton Friedman was alive and when cultural literacy meant knowing what old dead white elites knew and nothing else. I wonder what changed?

  6. WHY, oh WHY is taxing people FAIRLY to carry their FAIR SHARE of the CIVIC BURDEN considered “SOCIALISM”!?!? Really!??! Like that homeless dude last week I mentioned… Um, having the high mucky mucks ACTUALLY kick in from their largesse is bad??? HOW? It’s not taking over and putting 5 families in a 5 bedroom formerly-private mansion and taking the former owner’s bank accounts and the hidden bouillion from the snooker parlour… It’s reasonable and just taxation. Jeebus H!!???
    And P.J., P.J., P.J…you finally stuck your head in the Kool-Aid bowl…dammit!!! But just as well – as one of your fans that I used to be close to turned into a raging pus-filled a-hole, I have been less inclined to your material, so not a big loss.
    But anyone out there want to buy a signed first edition of “Bachelor Home Companion”??? Seriously…it was a gift for the former friend, but he never came back to reality land from his six-figure lifestyle. I don’t want it.

  7. I didn’t think PJ was funny since the mid-80’s. Somewhwere in my childhood at that point I gave my Dad one of his books for Christmas or birthday; I remember reading the first 10 pages and thinking that this guy wasn’t funny, he was just mean. Why Dad would prefer this to Dave Barry was beyond me.

  8. …well, I need the shipping address for that prison library (and I hope there are enough wobbly tables to go around), because I’ve got a stack of his books needing to be gotten rid of, too (although I’ll probably keep one or two, likeHolidays in Hell)…
    O’Rourke seems to have been overcome with creeping conservative curmudgeon-ness and just isn’t interesting to read anymore. He doesn’t seem to even try much of the time to try to inject some lame sense of conservative “humor” into a lot of his writing…

  9. A, please don’t donate those books to a prison library.
    Prison’s hard enough as it is, and I believe there’s some sort of rule against cruel and unusual punishment.

  10. O’Rourke’s political work has always been hack work. Even in the end of this piece, when he’s talking about how maybe the conservatives shouldn’t have made such a big deal of teh gay, or hating black people, or presidential blow jobs, he’s only saying it after the fact. He’d never have stood up and expressed those views during, oh, the past thirty years or so. The money for being a bitchy conservative “humorist” was too good.

  11. You should also take a look at this other example of Republican loser crackpot logic. This time by John Hinderaker. It reminded me immediately of “Your President Speaks”.
    “Power Line advises Obama to be just like Bush when he speaks publicly”
    The Importance of Being Careful
    Obama thinks he is a good talker, but he is often undisciplined when he speaks. He needs to understand that as President, his words will be scrutinized and will have impact whether he intends it or not. In this regard, President Bush is an excellent model; Obama should take a lesson from his example. Bush never gets sloppy when he is speaking publicly.
    “He chooses his words with care and precision, which is why his style sometimes seems halting. In the eight years he has been President, it is remarkable how few gaffes or verbal blunders he has committed. If Obama doesn’t raise his standards, he will exceed Bush’s total before he is inaugurated.”

  12. Elspeth,
    simple answer: Fairness is in the eye of the beholder.
    Those with higher incomes see the regressive sales tax as fair.

  13. Ditto to all the other comments, plus did anyone else notice the use of quotes around “rich?” Am I supposed to infer that this jerk-noodle rolls his eyes at the notion that anyone making $250,000 can justifiably be terned rich??
    I’m already exhausted by the mass post-election wingnut freakout and it’s NOT GOING TO STOP.

  14. A friend of mine gave me a copy ofHolidays in Hell. I didn’t think it was funny; I thought it was…yeah, just kind of mean and bitchy in a sort of Oscar Wildian kind of way (especially when Wilde was talking about women). If I’m going to read political humourists, I prefer Stephen Leacock. A little dated these days, but oh well…

  15. MapleStreet – my shock came from the homeless dude (that is, unless he is faking it and making a kingly sum utterly tax free…) being afraid of a ‘socialist’…?!?!?
    It’s a crazy world we live in, n’est ce pas?

  16. I thought Holidays in Hell was funny, if somewhat acerbic.
    His early stuff for Car and Driver was good.
    But PJ only had a handful of funny ideas. With his humor-impaired right wing audience only interested in him reinforcing their anger and ideology and deaf to wit, he has made a career of lazily recycling the same handful of schticks, getting angrier and less funny every time.
    Another example of how conservatives make shitty ‘artists’.

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