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Ed Driscoll

Roll Over Ol’ David, and Tell Trudeaupia the News

September 17th, 2013 - 5:18 am

Appearing on his natural home turf of PBS, David Brooks sneeringly describes Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) as “Ted Cruz, the senator from Canada”:

On PBS’s “NewsHour” on Friday night, New York Times columnist David Brooks warned that Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz and similar legislators’ rise to prominence threatens the traditional Republican Party.

Brooks insists the motives of Cruz are less about legislation and policy and more about the politics of undermining the Republican establishment.

“What’s going on in the House, and a bit in the Senate, too, is what you might call the rise of Ted Cruz-ism,” Brooks said. “And Ted Cruz, the senator from Canada through Texas, is basically not a legislator in the normal sense, doesn’t have an idea that he’s going to Congress to create coalitions, make alliances, and he is going to pass a lot of legislation. He’s going in more as a media-protest person. And a lot of the House Republicans are in the same mode. They’re not normal members of Congress. They’re not legislators. They want to stop things. And so they’re just being — they just want to obstruct.”

Just as a reminder, David Brooks cut his teeth at National Review and the Weekly Standard, but has moved so far from his conservative roots that he no longer understands, or simply doesn’t care, that he’s railing against William F. Buckley’s slogan of “Standing Athwart History, Yelling Stop.” Not to mention that he must be the first employee of the New York Times to describe being “the Senator from Canada” as a pejorative, given that the Gray Lady, and Barack Obama, her ideological offspring, view the liberal Canada of the late ‘60s and ‘70s, aka “Trudeaupia,” as the starting point for all of their leftist visions. (You know, the notions that first WFB and later the Tea Party stand athwart.)

Brooks intended Bobos in Paradise to set the collective mood of the late 1990s into context in the same fashion as Tom Wolfe’s “The ‘Me’ Decade and the Third Great Awakening” did for the 1970s. But unlike Wolfe, Brooks desperately seeks approval from the same Bobos that he analyzed. In sharp contrast, Wolfe’s white suit sets him apart from everyone who interviews him when he’s on the promo circuit, and more subtly, his notion of reportage being done as “The Man from Mars” deliberately sets him apart from his subject matter, when he’s out in the field being the interviewer. Contrast Brooks pitifully trying to be the Good Liberal Republican on PBS, with Wolfe explaining how he documented the comings and goings of the freaks who populated The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test in this 1987 NPR interview:

Wolfe said that Kesey would often test visitors and try to determine who among them was a “weekend hippie” and who actually followed the hippie lifestyle.

“He would say, ‘All right, let’s everybody get naked and get on our bikes and go up Route 1,’ ” recalled Wolfe. “They did. This separated the hippies from the weekend hipsters very rapidly. I didn’t have to worry because I was in my three-piece suit with a big blue corduroy necktie and the idea that I was going to take any of this off for anybody was crazy.”

The suit, he said, functioned to differentiate him from the people he covered in his pieces — and made it clear to his subjects that he was not one of them.

“I have discovered that for me, it is much more effective to arrive in any situation as a man from Mars than to try and fit in,” he said. “When I first started out in journalism, I used to try and fit in. … I tried to fit into the scene. … I was depriving myself of the ability of some very obvious questions if I fit in. … After that, I gave it up. I would turn up always in a suit and just be the village information gatherer.”

In contrast, having written Bobos in Paradise, Brooks produced a nicely written field guide to the new Left, and then afterwards, cashed in by going to work for those very same Bobos under the aegis of the New York Times, and in the process, became one of them. The result has been a series of spectacular judgment errors, most legendarily, falling in love with the senator from Cook County because of his trouser creases, but later viewing the former governor of Alaska, the Tea Party, and now Sen. Ted Cruz as all falling into the infra dig category of “Not Our Class, Darling.”

Occasionally, Brooks comes to his senses — he admitted in a 2011 New York Times column that “I’m a sap, a specific kind of sap. I’m an Obama Sap.” Well, no kidding, David. But to keep the paychecks rolling in, Brooks must continue to toe Pinch’s party line.

Which helps to explain his Canadian formulation to insult Ted Cruz. It isn’t just going birther; Brooks is trekking very close to the same “White Hispanic” Siberian territory where the Times had previously dispatched George Zimmerman last year. Which is a reminder that, to paraphrase Frank Burns on TV’s M*A*S*H, as far as the Gray Lady and its employees are concerned, tribalism is fine, as long as we all do it together.

Update: Welcome Instapundit and Mark Steyn readers. As Mark writes, unlike Brooks, his fellow Canadian immigrant, “It doesn’t have to be this way. I have a dream that one day my children will live in an America where they’re judged not on the color of their skin but on whether they’ve got an aunt in Saskatoon.”

Mark’s post is titled “The Last Phobia,” and while I would hate to risk arguing against the presumptive GOP senator from New Hampshire, I suspect the Times’ collective oikophobia causes the Great Lady to get a case of Marget Dumont-level vapors (vapours?) over all sorts of phobias, far beyond the growing Phantom Canadian Menace.

(Thumbnail on PJM homepage originally created for Roger L. Simon’s 2012 post, “David Brooks’ Odd Blindness.” And no, I’m not sure why Roger chose the singular case, either.)

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
If Brooks is correct, and Ted Cruz is threatening "the traditional Republican Party", I say "BRAVO! Keep doing whatever you're doing, Ted!"

The traditional Republican Party has given us over five years of disastrously ineffectual, inept leadership, and allowed Obama and his evil minions to run roughshod over this country. It deserves to be destroyed and replaced by people like Cruz. I hope he and others like him seize political power, and guide us back to the kind of country we can be proud of once again.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Ted Cruz and similar legislators’ rise to prominence threatens the traditional Republican Party.

Bug or feature?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
A bit amusing since Brooks was born in Toronto. Maybe he can dub himself "the New York Times columnist from Canada".
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (36)
All Comments   (36)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
test comment
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
hello
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Thank you PJM for enabling my commnetary. This is just a test.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The pathetic nebish Brooks pretends not to be able to understand that who a child's parents are and where he spends his formative years is far more important than where he is born. Pretending is stupid but lucrative.

If Cruz is the Senator form Canada, then Obama is the son of two commies who is irredeemably from Indonesia.

Joe Scarborough and David Brooks make a lot of money playing conservatives in the liberal run media. It's a toss-up as to which one is more risible.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
If Brooks is correct, and Ted Cruz is threatening "the traditional Republican Party", I say "BRAVO! Keep doing whatever you're doing, Ted!"

The traditional Republican Party has given us over five years of disastrously ineffectual, inept leadership, and allowed Obama and his evil minions to run roughshod over this country. It deserves to be destroyed and replaced by people like Cruz. I hope he and others like him seize political power, and guide us back to the kind of country we can be proud of once again.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Five years? I'd say twenty four with some exceptions here and there. I haven't seen a real Republican decide anything since Ronald Reagan returned to his ranch. Oh that we could bring back to life his bones! What would he say to those leading the party today?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Anyone who could say the following with a straight face is an "intellectual" moron, who should be laughed off the public stage at every opportunity:
“I remember distinctly an image of–we were sitting on his couches, and I was looking at his pant leg and his perfectly creased pant,” Brooks says, “and I’m thinking, a) he’s going to be president and b) he’ll be a very good president.”
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
What a buffoon. I hope he never lives that down.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The conspiracy continues with its latest players.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEaFLdK_e64
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Brooks doesn't like the apple cart upset because he likes things the way they are. He's sort of friendly with the Republican establishment, sort of friendly with the Democratic establishment. They return his calls. And NPR and PBS like his castrato-like opinions, none felt very deeply. He can go part of the way on his public policy issue you care to name. I remember in his first year or so on PBS when he looked like a scared nerd hoping for approval. Now he's lost hair, put on weight and smugness. Can't stand him.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I remember seeing this roundtable discussion with Milton Friedman & David Brooks:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wRXEk7su62w

Brooks was taking the social democrat position, which is pretty far to the Left. Friedman very much challenged his ideas and forced Brooks to rethink them, which to his credit, he did.

I think he then wrote a slightly satirical piece on Bill Buckley which caught Buckely's eye and he got a job.

I doubt he identifies much with the upcoming Republican resurgence against two progressive terms. I'm not sure his heart was ever there.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Brooks is a light-weight turd floating about as pond-scum - going whichever way the wind blows him. Its all about money with those types - I doubt he's got an ounce of moral character within him.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Please don't hold back - tell us how you really feel about him.

;-)
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
What gets me about people like Brooks, McCardle, Noonan, Chris Buckley and Althouse is that they supported Obama because they saw him as "one of them" -- i.e., a member of the "intellectual class." In reality, Obama is the intellectuals' "Mascot of Color," who literally gets a pass despite mediocre acomplishment, and is most definitely NOT "one of them." White liberals, in the meanwhile, were ecstatic because they finally got a "Negro" (what they secretly call African-Americans in the back of their soft-bigot minds) who wasn't Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton or Marion Barry. Remember those insulting quotes from Biden and Reid? That's what I'm talking about. For 30 pieces of PC silver, they all sold the country out.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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