Ezra Klein is shrill:
Jon Chait did a very funny job taking apart David Brooks’s column on reconciliation. I want to do a serious job on it. The factual statements Brooks uses in his argument are wrong. Not arguable, or questionable, or suspicious. Wrong. And since everything else flows from those wrong facts, the rest of the column can’t be taken seriously.
“Reconciliation has been used with increasing frequency,” writes Brooks. “That was bad enough. But at least for the Bush tax cuts or the prescription drug bill, there was significant bipartisan support.” The outcome of letting reconciliation go from rare and bipartisan to common and partisan is that we will go from a Senate where “people are usually pretty decent to one another” to a Senate that “bleaches out normal behavior and the normal instincts of human sympathy.”
Chilling stuff, huh?
But none of Brooks’s evidence is true. Literally none of it.
I think we should cut Bobo some slack- he may have been a little tired after eating too much at the Applebee’s salad bar.
Child Typist kicking ass & taking names!
I loved Ezra for this. I am going to DC in May. I want a date with Ezra. Can anyone hook me up?
Hiatt will not let this stand.
Ah, but the point remains; over the last decade reconciliation has been used to blow up the budget by $925 billion! And of course the party which held majority in Congress for each of those votes (except for one that decreased the deficit by $750 million) was the %hack, cough, wheeze!% Excuse me, the %hack, cough, wheeze!% Party.
Yep. I give it a week before Ezra’s writing his goodbye post and his spot is given to the Freepers.
Bill E Pilgrim
Chait’s comment that it’s a template for a David Brooks column is almost exactly the same thing I had to say in my comment attached to the Brooks column early this morning when it appeared.
It really was the perfect Brooks column: Start with some meandering pseudo-sociology delivered as a turgid overwritten essay of the worst kind, then jacknife right into a Fox News talking point as the conclusion.
there was a short period of time where the Democratic offensive pointing out that nothing was happening due to the republicans was actually getting press and changing public opinion. It’s clear that tools like Brooks cannot allow that to happen.
Has Bobo called the WaPo and asked them to shut down the comments for this piece too?
Yeah, this is awesome.
Shorter David Brooks: Facts are for the little people.
when pundits fight, everybody wins!
Just saw this over at ThinkProgress, re: today’s teabagger anti-health care reform rally on the Hill:
Holding up the health care bill, Rep. Gohmert shouts, ‘I brought an abortion to show you today.’
Chait and Taibbi both have good pieces too. It boils down to this: wrong, wrong, wrong and still, Mr. wrongheaded, you are wrong.
The Grand Panjandrum
Lehrer has got to get Ezra on the News Hour opposite Brooks. I might actually watch the news again.
Belafon (formerly anonevent)
Chait’s post might almost make me take up TNR Digital again. I wonder if we could get them to allow us to contribute directly to specific writers?
Facks are too often partisan, and might make Lindsey Graham weep.
Also, since when did Bobo Prime or any other right wing / Beltway minion ever lose a dime of pay for letting loose streams of demonstrably wrong claims?
I wonder if getting a gig with Newsweak has emboldened The Ezra wrt writings at the WaPoo. At any rate, YAY! for him.
I can’t process how he can say that those bills had “significant bipartisan support”. How can that be true if you had to use reconciliation? This is a contradiction in terms.
SovietObama aggression against a lunatic mob furious that a black Democrat is Presidentan innocent peoples’ struggle for democracy will not stand!
Though inspired by a different time and place, I’m sure we’ll soon see one peaceful TeaTard attempting to face down a tank.
@matt: Well, Bobo himself gets to define “significant” however he wants. So, if there were only two, or one, Democratic votes, or even if one Democrat talked kindly at one time or other about the bill, it could be “significant”. At least, to Bobo, emotionally.
By Bobo’s measure, both the stimulus and health care reform (in the House), had significant bipartisan support.
Uh oh. Potomac Spring is apparently being
violently crushed by Soviet tanks and troopsvillainously mocked by sneering Democratic overlords:
Ba-dump-bump. He’ll be here all week, veal, etc.
I was glad to hear “smaller than expected crowd of tea party protesters” but things just went down hill from there. And I thought Shelly Bachmann had the crazy congress critter act down pat. I was waiting for a semi to roll up and this maniac to start handing out AK-47s
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) urged a smaller-than-expected crowd of Tea Party protesters on Tuesday to launch a Velvet Revolution-style uprising against the federal government, saying the parallels are striking between America’s current government and Eastern European communist rule.
Speaking to the Huffington Post shortly after his speech, King declared that a peaceful uprising, a la the successful overthrowing of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia on the streets of Prague in 1989 “would be fine with me.”
“Fill this city up, fill this city, jam this place full so that they can’t get in, they can’t get out and they will have to capitulate to the will of the American people,” he said.
“So this is just like Prague under communist rule?” the Huffington Post asked.
“Oh yeah, it is very, very close,” King replied. “It is the nationalization of our liberty and the federal government taking our liberty over. So there are a lot of similarities there.”
Earlier, King implored the crowd to bring the nation’s capital to a sort of paralysis. Warning, erroneously, that the health care bill would fund abortion and fund care for 6.1 million illegal immigrants, he demanded that concerned citizens “continue to rise up.”
“I look back 20 years ago in the square in Prague… when tens of thousands showed up there and they shook their keys peacefully and they took over their country and they achieved their freedom back again,” he said. “If you can keep coming to this city, fill up the congressional offices across the country but jam this city. If you can get on your cell phones, and get on your Blackberries and your email, and ask people to keep coming to this town. Storm this city, fill up Washington D.C., jam this capital so they can’t move. And if tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of you show up, we will win. We will defeat this bill and you will have your liberty back.”
Is it my imagination, or has Ezra been on a roll lately?
@El Cid: um, okay, so what exactly counts as treason in this country? apparently when citizens objected to a particular policy aim (the Iraq war) without any hint of wanting to take down the government, that was treason. and this? I guess it falls under the IOKIYAR/Teabagger. Jesus F. Christ.
@The Grand Panjandrum:
“Lehrer has got to get Ezra on the News Hour opposite Brooks. I might actually watch the news again.”
Lehrer will have to do so over the dead rerun body of Lawerence Welk. PBS stations think fans of Brooks’s flabby joweled conterpart are its donor demographic.
The Grand Panjandrum
Brooks’ points are Kristol clear. Leave him alone, Ezra!
Regarding the recent nonsense about how the house “is trying to pass health care reform without a vote”, this is how to deal with it:
Basically, any sort of act committed by an other-than-right-winger.
It’s in the Constitution. Look it up.
Ezra’s sexy when he’s mad.
OT, but tangentially related…
As I mentioned in another thread, I used my lunch hour to go to a rally for HCR at Jason Altmire’s local office at noon. We had about a hundred or so people there (AFL-CIO affiliated union members, SEIU members, and miscellaneous MoveOn and OFA members like me). I had hoped that a bunch of Tea Baggers would show up so we could mock them. Unfortunately, only one crazy old lady showed up in her crappy truck with an anti-HCR sign on it, honking her horn and screaming garbage at us. Then she was stupid enough to stop and yell out her window at a bunch of carpenters, steelworkers, pipe fitters, iron workers and such about what commie dupes they were and how Obama was going to kill us all. And wouldn’t stop when told to move along. So there we had a crazed old woman screaming crazy shit with her truck surrounded by about 2 or 3 dozen large, strong, pissed-off men. Happily, after telling her to shut up or give up her Medicare and Social Security checks if she’s so worried about sockialism (she didn’t seem to understand the connection…seriously), she was allowed to drive away unmolested except for aurally.
And a quick check online shows that the Pgh. Post-Gazette caught our little inbroglio with the crazy woman:
That makes it sound nicer than it was.
Did anyone see Rachel last night with JD Hayworth? She challenged his “You could marry your horse” nonsense and his statement that the MA Supremes used “the establishment of intimacy” standard in defining marriage. She repeatedly told him that phrase was nowhere to be found in the ruling, and he just kept smiling and saying, “I guess we disagree.” Must be an epidemic of drop-dead wrongness in the Republican Party.
mmmm. it will be a grand day in IA when one can shout “le roi est mort!” and then just skip the 2nd half.
Dammit. Got so excited to report my HCR rally experience that I used the s-word and am now in moderation. Oh, well. Pretty decent crowd for small town Western PA.
This is a feature, not a bug.
Bobo has directly addressed this before when called on his bullshit.
He is not bound by mere facts. He is focusing on the essence of things, not their outward appearance.
Folks who get all wrapped up in “factual accuracy” are missing the bigger picture that Bobo is delivering *revealed wisdom* to the unwashed.
Ezra is obviously too dumb to get this.
Oh. and *SNAP*
Bill E Pilgrim
@ricky: When you think that he was Robert Kennedy’s campaign manager, it boggles.
Though not that much.
I remember when he was calling Move On “not even Democrats”. I always wished he would actually stand up against the idiocy of Brooks (or Starbursts, or etc. Though Gergen wasn’t actually that bad) more strongly once in a while, but that was the first time I wanted to just punch the TV.
carlos the dwarf
Why doesn’t Ezra Klein have a column in the Times?
Well, if that’s true, then shouldn’t they have gotten their liberty back when 1.2 to 2 million of them showed up in DC for the 9/12/09 March? ;-)
I, for one, am happy the oppression is not so harsh that I can’t see Malkin’s site or listen to Glenn Beck. YET. First, they came for Christmas, and we said nothing…
Wow. There’s an ton of WIN in that Ezra post.
Hey, Dem Congresscritters – you paying attention to this? THIS IS HOW YOU DO IT.
Hey — right wingers are fed up with all these rich, elitist leukemia patients flaunting their wealth of hoity toity elitist cancerous cells in their faces and trying to ram human empathy down their throats.
Freedom’s just another word for no hair left to lose.
If only the Democrats weren’t so partisan in trying to destroy the Constitution by voting for legislation, right wing pundits wouldn’t be forced to expose cancer sufferers for the irresponsible greedheads they are.
Short Bus Bully
Damn, what a take down!
If I wasn’t in fear of a cloud of cheetos dust permanently obscuring my vision I would applaud vigorously.
Bobo should stick with what he does best – reading obscure articles, parroting them, telling us how relevant they are before they return to the mildew of some shelf.
I know this sort of historical pig-ignorance and nonsense has sadly become commonplace, but…
Remember the wingnut salad days of 2002-2006, when Americans who opposed the Bush Administration were supposed to shut up, and we’d be treated to daily cable news scoldings of various Democratic legislators who made but a peep over it? Compare that to now. Astonishing.
The Main Gauche of Mild Reason
Am I the only one a little surprised by the Yglesias/Klein inversion? First Yglesias becomes “Big Media Matt” after getting a big job at the Atlantic, while Ezra still works for TAP. Then he leaves the Atlantic, and Ezra suddenly gets a gig at WaPo/Newsweek, has interviews with Diane Sawyer, gains the ire of Joe Lieberman, etc etc etc.
It makes one wonder if there was a Blair/Brown style restaurant meeting (or maybe just a JournoList one) where they decided Ezra should be the front man.
Gateway Pundit is a white supremacist. Why the wingnutosphere hasn’t washed their hands of him is beyon…oh, who am I kidding.
Poor, poor Bobo. He doesn’t remember being served his salad at Applebys. Memory clouded by the extensive wine list, I’m sure….
@D.N. Nation: What, are you some sort of commie leukemian sympathizer?
and when he’s not…
Who finds some of the people Jim Hoft links to fairly reprehensible? Why yes.
Yeah, I remember those “considerable assets”. The claim was that since they didn’t sell their house and live on the streets, they were obviously not really in need of money to pay the medical bills.
Watching with casual disinterest on a television monitor (CSPAN?) as someone chained up most of the prominent GOP lawmakers with intricate industrial puzzles in a leaky school basement SAW-style “would be fine with me.”
@Randy P: Maybe they meant the Mom could have made extra cash streetwalking.
So, what is this “Gateway Pundit” the gateway to? Stormfront?
stands to reason — isn’t Leukemia near Czechoslovakia?
Where were you all when Potomac Spring was crushed?!
But seriously, doesn’t Potomac Spring sound like a really hideously named soap?
@Ming: It took quite a while after World War IV to round up all the Leukemian separatists.
I actually had no idea about this.
Ughhhhh. I’m imagining Old Spice and hair pommade with a faint but lingering fart smell. You know. That old man smell. Kinda like what I imagine the Senate chamber smells like.
The average commenter here has more pride in the quality of their statements than Bobo, and is subject to more scrutiny than the Times gives their highest profile columnist. What explains this? He’s not stupid, and he has access to the facts as we all do. The only answer is he’s intentionally lying and the Times is either intentionally or unintentionally letting him lie, under the guise of “it’s just opinion”. Just like the WaPo does with its stable of lying liars.
The Village needs to be burned down to the motherfucking ground.
“And our plan would have worked, too, if it hadn’t been for you meddling voters and your mangy democracy.”
@aimai: But seriously, doesn’t Potomac Spring sound like a really hideously named soap?
The soap would smell like muddy river water sitting in your basement for a week.
@Cat Lady: Just imagine if your average pundit and, for that matter, journalist, had to pass the argument and source verification required for, say, an undergraduate thesis research paper. Dozens, nay, hundreds of them would fail out. And we’d probably be better off replacing them with undergraduate thesis writers.
‘And if we could simply get 200 million of you to donate $1,000 to our cause, we’d be much, much better off, I mean, closer to victory.’
licensed to kill time
@geg6: Not the whiff of Aqua Velva and a little bit of cigar smoke?
Oh, I read that as meaning an entirely different kind of soap. I was imagining a beltway Dynasty, with Michelle Bachman and Sarah Palin as warring matriarchs. You know, shoulderpads, bumpits, and intrigue. Also.
There’s a difference between stupid and lazy.
Bobo has gotten lazy (if he ever wasn’t). He’s become very used to being treated as an expert on politics, and it’s gone to his head to the point that he treats himself as a source. At this point he believes that his musings are true and important by dint of being his musings. He knows that he isn’t going to get called on it in any serious way, so it’s now self-reinforcing.
Yes, but he sounds erudite and is oh-so-genteel. Isn’t that really all that matters?
El Cid! I’m afraid to click on any of the links at that site after reading this:
And why has no one thought up a riff on the original?
@R-Jud: I’m almost afraid to ask, but what are bumpits? Surely they can’t be . . . Naaah.
licensed to kill time
They’re those things you put under your hair to make that odd little bump at the crown. Makes you look all 60’s-ish, early Liverpool Mod. Or weirdly Mormon-lady hair. But I know what you were thinking, ha!
isn’t Leukemia near Czechoslovakia?
It is one of those Beneleuks countries where they make the much discussed soap.
Keep your government hands off my Medicare!!1!
@Licensed to Kill Time: Thanks, I finally figured it out. But yes indeed, I was thinking of something like armpits only a bit lower (esp since I think R-Jud is a Brit and would more routinely use “bum” in that sense).