David Brooks finally looks out his window

Yesterday the New York Times played host to a strange event. In a piece communicated as a sort of public service message, commentator David Brooks declared that the Republican Party has become “naïve,” “cynical,” “bumbling,” and most of all, “incompetent.” From his piece:

Politics is the process of making decisions amid diverse opinions. It involves conversation, calm deliberation, self-discipline, the capacity to listen to other points of view and balance valid but competing ideas and interests.

But this new Republican faction regards the messy business of politics as soiled and impure. Compromise is corruption. Inconvenient facts are ignored. Countrymen with different views are regarded as aliens. Political identity became a sort of ethnic identity, and any compromise was regarded as a blood betrayal.

There is nothing in his typically literate and insightful assessment that I disagree with. What makes this column, like the rest of his work, so frustrating is this burning question: “Where the f%$# have you been for the past decade?”

Through an endless string of Mission Accomplished’s and Terry Schaivos and Rev. Wrights and Sarah Palins, through climate denial, and mortgage crisis denial and deflation denial and apology tours, past gold-buggery, the Amero, FEMA camps, and Jade Helm, through hearings on Fast and Furious, the IRS, Benghazi, and Planned Parenthood; all of a sudden NOW the GOP is nuts.

There is a strange detachment experienced by established Republican figures in DC and New York circles. Out in the provinces the pace of events has been dizzying. These folks seem largely unaware that they are no longer driving the bus.

Every political organization has its share of weirdos and extremists. Conventional wisdom dictates that engaging those characters directly is fruitless. A healthy organization can overwhelm the will of a few oddballs merely by remaining on task.

There are exceptions to that rule. Sometimes, as in a patient with a compromised immune system, otherwise ordinary pathogens turn lethal. Out in flyover country this dangerous condition has been apparent for a long time while our “thought leaders” on the East Coast twiddled away, dismissing concerns. If David Brooks is finally noticing that there’s a problem, then it is probably too late to reach the lifeboats.

To his credit, Brooks has a least taken a different path from his ideological predecessor, George Will. In fairness to Will though, the difference may be marked more by a generational divide than any particular personal insight. As the GOP has raced over a cliff Will has dutifully followed, becoming that obnoxious bigoted uncle at the Thanksgiving table. Brooks is still clinging to the ledge, trying not to become a cartoon while the party leaves him and others like him unrepresented and despised from all sides.

I wish him luck. We all need it. These are difficult times for sane conservatives. Even if the party were in a healthier state, the accelerating pace of technological and social change would make credible conservatism uniquely challenging – and more valuable than ever.

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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136 comments on “David Brooks finally looks out his window
  1. flypusher says:

    “There is nothing in his typically literate and insightful assessment that I disagree with. What makes this column, like the rest of his work, so frustrating is this burning question: “Where the f%$# have you been for the past decade?”

    Always sucks to be Cassandra. The TP fringe has been pretty honest about their desire to disrupt things, I’ll give them that. No doubt the establishment was thinking of all those other revolutionaries who were going to change Washington (remember 1994?), only to get assimilated into the system. This batch isn’t going this usual route, and hopefully they’re not too late in this realization.

  2. 1mime says:

    This piece clearly displays the hypocrisy of those Republicans in the Freedom Caucus. They are publicly basing their obstructionism on the basis of “party rules” but their long game is so much more than that. The Politico Article provided a link to their DEMANDS of any member who wants their support to be Speaker (now 38 members – two have resigned – any candidate that wants to receive a pure Republican majority without requiring Dem votes, must have their support. I’m going to say it again: it ain’t just rule changes that they want, it’s much, much more. The rules are simply the means; the issues are laid out in questions 11-18.

    If Paul Ryan cedes to their demands as a condition of support, we are forewarned about his Presidential platform, not to mention immediate threats of government shut down, etc. This is really a defining moment for the traditional Republicans in Congress to decide if they will stand up to this group. I have to believe that more Freedom Caucus members can be picked off if some of the reasonable rules changes are separated out from their real agenda, which is to force more of their colleagues into hostile gerrymandered competition, fed by their principled stand against the hard right FC members.

    http://www.politico.com/story/2015/10/justin-amash-freedom-caucus-house-republicans-214819

    http://www.politico.com/f/?id=00000150-49be-d501-ab5d-6dbf7cd70000

    • 1mime says:

      Another excellent indepth analysis of the Freedom Caucus, their goals and strategy.

      An excerpt: “in the near term, America should brace for chaos — with Republican infighting jeopardizing not only the nation’s credit, but funding for our roads and bridges, our veterans and the most vulnerable among us. Boehner was a unique politician: the son of a barback, most at ease at the country club. “He had unique skills bridging irreconcilable groups of Republicans and averting utter disaster,” says Ornstein, the congressional scholar. “Nobody else, starting with Kevin McCarthy, has the ability to do it.” The Freedom Caucus members have been emboldened by their coup, and anti-establishment presidential candidates will egg them on. This tiny band of radicals — who have built careers on hatred of government — won’t be deterred until they’ve shaken the very foundation of the people’s House.

      Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/meet-the-right-wing-rebels-who-overthrew-john-boehner-20151006#ixzz3ofVvgoCr
      Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

  3. Turtles Run says:

    On topic.

    This is what passes for credible Republican candidates now. Huckabee was interviewed by conservative host Jan Mickelson and they discussed the merits of reintroducing slavery into our society.

    Jan Mickelson has previously suggested turning undocumented immigrants into slaves as well and has posed that nothing is wrong with slavery.

    Where are the deafening cries of condemnation by the other presidential hopefuls on the Republican side or from the party?

    http://www.rawstory.com/2015/10/huckabee-agrees-with-pro-slavery-radio-host-sell-poor-criminals-as-property-instead-of-jailing-them/

    • Crogged says:

      Why would you do that when anonymous liberals write comments on blogs?

    • flypusher says:

      “Jan Mickelson has previously suggested turning undocumented immigrants into slaves as well and has posed that nothing is wrong with slavery.”

      Some of them already are slaves, technically speaking, when scumbag employers can steal their wages and subject them to unsafe working conditions, because there’s always more to take their place, and who are they going to complain to without risking deportation?? Back-handed kudos to these two for admitting it.

    • Crogged says:

      Can’t comment on this because I’m a futurist bent on conforming you. These pastists are a creative bunch-have to give them credit.

    • 1mime says:

      Turtles, This reported today by the SPLC:

      https://www.splcenter.org/news/2015/10/12/fifteen-confederate-%E2%80%98flaggers%E2%80%99-indicted-terroristic-threats-and-gang-activity-georgia

      And, there is any wonder WHY Black people don’t vote Republican? Why Black people are afraid, even when they are on private property, with children and families? And, why Black people and others, myself included, think many Republicans are racist?

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        More of the same Mime.

        Even racists realize overt racism is not a wise strategy.

        They call the racism behind the Civil War “States rights”. Today they call it protecting ” heritage “.

        They’re not fooling anybody.

  4. BigWilly says:

    David Brooks, palace eunuch. He’s not one of those bad, bully boy, conservatives in Congress. He’s safe for dinner conversation with any sane, reasonable, liberal who wants to discuss the eventual eradication of mank…the Christian Right. Feel free to toss him under the bus.

    Ben Bernanke-seriously? The establishment GOP is more interested in cordial relations with its executioners.

    Brave New World is a wickedly funny book, I’ve read it and Brave New World Revisited several times. Even thought it can be humorous its really quite terrifying, especially when you begin to see how deeply we’re in it.

    You guys with the contraception deception, Promiscuity is your duty so f-off. How far removed are we from hatcheries? Just think, the pain of childbirth will be felt no more (and you’ll always be pneumatic).

    We will all become wards of the state. Gan, what a nightmare.

    Free to be whatever society wants me to be. Think about this. You have no integral value as a human being. You are nothing, a nobody, essentially worthless, unless you conform. You present democratic socialism as a benign tyranny, but I don’t believe there is anything benign within tyranny. It’s a corrosive and anti human system. Nothing good can come of it.

    It’s a change I will not willingly make.

    • 1mime says:

      BW, I’m glad I don’t have your view of the world. Despite my frustration with many things within our democratic society, I have never felt that I had to conform “just” because society demanded it “if” that conformance (or cooperation, as I prefer to label it) is not just, or valid to my own needs and values. Certainly that can be challenging, but in the end, one has to live with oneself. I rather like who I am even while I know I am imperfect and probably not liked by all others. In the end, self-respect is more important to me than group respect (which is nice when it aligns (-:) We each have a role in life as individuals and as part of the group we have chosen to live within. There are trade-offs for sure, but a balanced life means being able to find more good and happiness than despair. Politically, I find that the Democratic Party best meets my personal needs and values but I recognize that there is another point of view and respect the right of others to choose a different model. When their model begins to negatively impact my life or value system, I have the right to object and support my own views – which is the very essence of democracy.

      • Tuttabella says:

        We have a problem when conformance is legally mandatory, OR when lack of conformance is seen as a legitimate excuse to harass or humiliate people in this age of the internet, when “public information” is so accessible and so easily transmitted, and privacy has lost all meaning.

      • 1mime says:

        All true, Tutta, but rational conformance for safety and order is necessary in a civilized society. Humiliation in whatever form is always wrong, and those who practice it are despicable people. My problem springs more from lack of tolerance and respect for other viewpoints, as well as those who exploit them and demand compliance with their own views. I am certain you know what I mean. Ridicule and humiliation via the anonymity of the internet is cowardly and wrong. I’m sure we are all guilty of this from time to time because we are not having to look the intended recipient in the eyes, but it is still wrong and unnecessary. Intelligent people should be able to make their point without being insulting or demeaning, though I admit to being both on more than one occasion which is more honest than polite disagreement.

      • BigWilly says:

        You will vaccinate!

      • 1mime says:

        You will vaccinate!

        Please explain this, BW.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Legally mandated to carry fetus to term because of someone else’s religious beliefs?
        Forced transvaginal ultrasounds without doctor recommendations?
        Required “information” to abortion recipients that is scientifically/medically inaccurate?
        Shaming of welfare recipients by publishing their names or requiring drug tests?
        Teaching of religion in science classes?

        Yeah…it is the problem of liberals and non-Christians forcing people to conform in a country where 75% of the population claims to be Christian.

    • EJ says:

      I was born into a religious household; I’m a secular liberal now, living in a country whose laws (I imagine) horrifies you. I always found that the pressure to conform and the reminders of personal worthlessness were vastly worse under religion than they have ever been under secularism.

      If, as you say, the establishment GOP are wishing to eradicate that, then I wish them godspeed.

      • 1mime says:

        One of Barbara Kingsolver’s best books is “The Poisonwood Bible”. Hope you’ve read it. It clearly, sadly portrays the disintegration of balance through religious zealotry. Great read.

      • BigWilly says:

        I’m self-made. My religious instruction consists of self-study, divine revelation, and 12 hours of theology at a Franciscan University. I think you have a different conception of the whole thing because it was handed to you, rather than earned. I’m a relentless seeker of God, not of human approval.

        I moved back to MKE, WI for approx. 1 year before I moved back to TX. I had forgotten how much I hated that place and its trenchant liberalism. I had a choice. I left.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        BW, I honestly think you have deep seated issues. You should seek help.

      • EJ says:

        The Poisonwood Bible is an amazing book. I recommend it very highly.

      • BigWilly says:

        Mark 8:33

        “Get behind Me, Satan; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”

    • Crogged says:

      Wasn’t contraception deception a Schoolhouse rock song? Exactly what ‘pain of childbirth’ did you feel after the shot of rainwater and pure grain alcohol asked all women…………

    • flypusher says:

      “You guys with the contraception deception, Promiscuity is your duty so f-off. How far removed are we from hatcheries? Just think, the pain of childbirth will be felt no more (and you’ll always be pneumatic).

      We will all become wards of the state. Gan, what a nightmare.”

      That’s not a slippery slope, that’s a free fall off a cliff.

    • Griffin says:

      Is this what happens when nihilism meets right-wing populism?

    • dowripple says:

      “Even thought it can be humorous its really quite terrifying, especially when you begin to see how deeply we’re in it.”

      Did you forget your dose of Soma today?

      • BigWilly says:

        Oct 15th, drop dead day for most of you. Soma will be arriving shortly from Moscow, via Hackensack. Wodka sounds strangely like water when you hear it in Russian.

      • 1mime says:

        BW, you know a lot about things that I have never heard of….I’ll just have to trust you that you’re keeping me safe (-:

    • Titanium Dragon says:

      The Christian Right is pro-theocracy.

      The reality is that all governments which serve the people are intrinsically socialistic; the question is how much socialism they engage in. Do they just provide for the common defense? Do they engage in public works and infrastructure projects? Do they have programs to keep people off the streets? Public education? Health care?

      Where different people draws the line varies, but any government which serves the people does at least some of those functions.

      Who cares how children are born? Why would it matter?

      The idea of the Brave New World is a caste-based society, but that’s not what you’d see in reality – as civilization has become increasingly advanced, rather than needing more lower-caste people, we’ve needed FEWER. There’s no reason to produce them.

      The government tries to make sure you don’t fall off the wagon or try and push other people off; it doesn’t really care that much beyond that.

  5. rightonrush says:

    OT

    Another GOP congressman says Benghazi panel meant to hurt Clinton
    Dan Merica-Profile-Image

    By Dan Merica, CNN

    Updated 7:43 AM ET, Thu October 15, 2015 | Video Source: CNN

    GOP congressman: Benghazi committee was political

    Las Vegas (CNN)Another Republican lawmaker says the House Select Committee on Benghazi is meant to go after the reputation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

    Rep. Richard Hanna, R-New York, said Wednesday on New York’s’ WIBX 950 said “Sometimes the biggest sin you can commit in D.C. is to tell the truth.”

    “This may not be politically correct, but I think that there was a big part of this investigation that was designed to go after people and an individual, Hillary Clinton,” said Hanna, who is not a member of the committee. “After what Kevin McCarthy said, it’s difficult to accept at least a part of it was not. I think that’s the way Washington works. But you’d like to expect more from a committee that’s spent millions of dollars and tons of time.”

    http://www.cnn.com/2015/10/14/politics/hillary-clinton-benghazi-committee/

    • 1mime says:

      I researched Rep. Hanna and he comes from a farming background, which usually is accompanied by good common sense. He was elected in 2011, so has only been in office two years and obviously is an independent thinker and has not be co-opted by the hard right. Republicans like this are the hope of the party. I hope he runs for re-election although his honesty may cause him to be primaried. Let us hope his constituents are as smart as he appears to be.

      Good find, RR.

  6. Off topic for this post, but I’d like to get your comments on an article in Reuters using historical modeling to predict with “reasonable certainty” that an R will win in 2016.

    http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2015/10/14/forget-what-you-saw-last-night-two-simple-reasons-a-republican-is-likely-to-win-in-2016/?utm_source=Facebook

    • goplifer says:

      Reminds me of the models that credit rating agencies were using to predict housing prices prior to 2007. A model based on history works until it doesn’t.

      Barring a zombie outbreak, catastrophic meteor strike, or Sanders winning the Democratic nomination, no Republican can gain enough Electoral votes to win in 2016.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        From your mouth to God’s ears, but in the back of my head, I keep hearing the 538 folks saying that the signs point to a very competitive race that would easily tip to the GOP (with the assumption that they nominate someone sane).

        Granted, the 538 folks are building off historical trends (e.g., no incumbent or VP running, weak economic growth, low presidential popularity, etc.), and to your point, historical trends only work until they don’t.

      • 1mime says:

        Having all three branches of government (four if you add SCOTUS) in the hands of one party defeats Democracy, and I don’t care which party. Democracy requires checks and balances, of course it also requires sanity…..

    • Titanium Dragon says:

      The main problem with the idea that the public switches parties every time is that it doesn’t.

      Let’s look at the 20th century.

      McKinley -> Teddy Roosevelt -> Taft (4 terms of Republicans, ended by Teddy running against Taft)
      Wilson (2 terms of Democrats, ended by aftermath of World War I)
      Harding -> Coolidge -> Hoover (3 terms of Republicans, ended by Great Depression)
      FDR -> Truman (5 terms of Democrats)
      Eisenhower (2 terms of Republicans)
      JFK -> LBJ (2 terms of Democrats, ended by Vietnam)
      Nixon -> Ford (2 terms of Republicans, ended by scandal)
      Carter (1 term Democrat, ended by bad economy)
      Reagan -> Bush Sr (3 terms of Republican, ended by bad economy)
      Clinton -> Gore (3 terms of Democrats, ended by Supreme Court decision)
      Bush, Jr (1 term of Republican, ended by bad economy and general incompetence)
      Obama -> ? (2+? terms of Democrats)

      Contrary to what is claimed by the article, we’ve actually seen a lot of long stretches of rule by a single party, and generally speaking, what causes a change is something bad happening – only Truman -> Eisenhower -> JFK weren’t marked by some major issue happening in the last administration, and that’s arguably because Eisenhower was a war hero (and as it turned out, one of the best presidents ever) and thus too popular to beat (Adlai Stevenson’s best piece of advice ever was “Don’t run against a war hero.”) I suppose Clinton -> Gore also counts, but the Republicans actually lost the popular vote there, and it was decided by a SC decision in the end (and it is notable that Eisenhower -> JFK was also an election of very narrow margins). So really, it seems like the general trend is that the party in charge of the white house gets kicked out when something bad happens on their watch – either party infighting (Teddy vs Taft), wars (World War I, Vietnam, arguably Iraq and Afghanistan in 2008), economic downturns (Hoover, Carter, Bush Sr, Bush Jr), or scandal (Nixon, debatably Bush Jr.).

      More or less, barring some major disaster in the next year or so, there’s actually a not unreasonable chance that the Democrats will hold onto the white house – they probably have better than even odds, especially if you consider Bush Jr. to be an “exception” in the same way that Wilson and Eisenhower were.

      Another problem with any such model is considering the reality that most of the time, when an incumbent who is eligible for re-election doesn’t run, it is because they’re deeply unpopular (Truman, LBJ); the same is likely even more true in other countries which lack term limits in many cases. This makes it disproportionately likely that situations without incumbents are that way because the incumbent got embroiled in some scandal that tended to tar any potential successor (see also: Ford).

      • 1mime says:

        Interesting ideas, Titanium. Apply the same thought process to major candidates for the presidential nomination might be apropos about now as Hillary engages with the House Select Committee on Benghazi. The “would have been” candidates……and there are many….that “might have been” except for poor decisions and/or political scheming…a la “swift boat”, “Benghazi”….

  7. 1mime says:

    I wanted to report back on the female shooter in the Home Depot lot. Charges have been brought against her, although I haven’t read the details. She could have killed someone.

    The other point I want to make is that the Justice Department announced today the creation of a position within the Department who will supervise domestic terrorism and violence. One person for an entire nation is minuscule but it is a start. This individual will have the authority to coordinate investigations and pull together evidence in events such as mass shootings.

      • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

        Speaking of liability of gun distributers and sensible gun control legislation:

        Could the tide already be truly be turning? I think we should all stay tuned to the following story and future developments.

        Apparently “Cops Lives Do Matter”… quite a lot.

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2015/10/14/the-multimillion-dollar-wisconsin-gun-store-verdict-that-could-reverberate-in-the-gun-debate/

      • 1mime says:

        This is a tough one for me. You know that I am deadly serious about gun violence, and, I do agree with gun store liability if there is a “direct’ sale to someone who was legally unqualified. As much as I hate to say this, I think it is unfair to place blame on the gun store if the sale met all legal requirements on both sides of the transaction. The fault lies with the individual who did the shooting. I think this will be reversed on appeal. There are many legitimate, patently clear areas to target for change. I just don’t see the logic here.

      • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

        It is a shame that it takes the maiming of two police officers (the result of a gun store allowing a straw purchase to take place) to get any traction in the fight to hold gun makers/distributers liable for helping arm the criminal element (or the mentally deranged).

        But I guess to get anything positive done on this issue I’ll take what I can get. But make no mistake, thousands of young lives have been lost to weapons that made their way into communities via blatant straw purchases. Those senseless deaths are apparently not as compelling or threatening to the Gun Lobby as two grievously injured police officers in Oregon.

        Perhaps Badger Guns is the NRA’s “Todd Akin” it so richly deserves.

        excerpts from Salon.com:

        “Badger Guns, then known as Badger Outdoors, was once the top seller of guns later used in crimes in the whole country — selling 537 guns that were recovered from crime scenes in 2005 alone, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.”

        http://www.salon.com/2015/10/14/the_nra_is_finally_put_on_notice_gun_shop_held_liable_for_illegal_gun_sale/

      • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

        I hear where you are coming from on this issue, 1mine. My problem is the clerk at the store was clearly complicit in a gun purchase that was a fraudulent, illegal gun purchase.

        “When 18-year-old Julius Burton was looking to get his hands on a gun in 2009, he grabbed a 21-year-old friend and headed to Badger Guns where a sales associate helped his friend correct the paperwork for purchase of a semiautomatic pistol. The friend had correctly marked the box indicating that he was purchasing the gun for Burton, who was underage. Such an exchange, known as a “straw” purchase, is illegal and the Badger Guns shop clerk helped Burton’s friend cover up that slip of honesty, as seen on footage from the store’s surveillance video from that day.”

        Again, it was a compelling video of the event that made the difference during the trial, just like with police shootings. Nothing seems to convince Americans that things like racism or police brutality exist in this country until they see (for example) a video of a handcuffed black suspect shot in the back, gasping for air while a cop yells “Fu** your breath!”

        This is probably not the first time this has happened with the store, that clerk clearly had some approval or indifference from management to these kinds of purchases… all to make an extra buck.

        “Badger Guns, then known as Badger Outdoors, was once the top seller of guns later used in crimes in the whole country — selling 537 guns that were recovered from crime scenes in 2005 alone, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.”

        Businessmen (in the gun industry) can lie, cheat and be as corrupt as any street criminal or any amoral low-level bureaucrat. The only difference is they can better insulate themselves to prosecution/civil liability because they can afford better legal representation. Imagine what stores like Badger Guns has gotten away with because they knew Big Daddy NRA would more than likely go to bat for them in Washington or in the court room (if they ever faced class action lawsuits).

        For stores like Badger Guns I would tell civil attorneys for crime victims and federal/state prosecutors to do one thing… keep digging.

        If we chased after morally bankrupt (and law breaking) gun stores like Badger Guns with same vigor Trump proposes we do for illegal Mexicans, we might make actual progress on that whole drug dealing/murdering/raping problem.

      • 1mime says:

        Then the sale was fraudulent. As I indicated, where I have a problem is with a business being held responsible for a sale of an item that was then used improperly when that business had completed its transaction legally and in good faith. This is obviously a breach of that process and sadly two people were shot as a result. I understand what you’re saying, Sir Magpie.

      • Well, magpie, look at it this way. Let’s say the folks at Planet Ford (a local Ford dealership) sell you a brand spanking new F-150 pick-up. You then go out, get falling down drunk, climb behind the wheel of your shiny new pickup, and plow into a Prius carrying a family of 4, killing them all. You are charged with DWI and vehicular manslaughter, and convicted; you go to jail.

        Surviving extended family members wish to assuage their grief by filing suit against someone. Who is liable for the deaths their loved ones? Ford Motor Company? the Planet Ford dealership? Or you, personally? Common sense (and a long, long tradition of English common law and U.S. law) holds that only you, personally, are responsible. The truck manufacturer can not be held liable for your personal conduct and actions (including your unlawful acts), nor can the retailer who sold you the truck.

        The 2005 Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act merely codifies the long held standard of jurisprudence described above. In that sense the act is entirely redundant. It serves only to further discourage frivolous harrassment suits by the anti-gun lunatic fringe.

        In the Colorado case that Martin O’Malley so shamelessly brought up in the Dem debate, the complainants (the Brady Center and the Phillips family) filed suit not against the Aurora murderer, but against the retailers that lawfully sold the murderer the ammunition (and other equipment) that the murderer used in his heinous rampage. The court promptly hoisted the complainants on their own petard, as was entirely proper and just. As the losers in the case, under Colorado law the complainants bear the court costs, to the tune of $220,000+. That is also entirely proper and just, and will hopefully serve as a rejoinder against further legal shenanigans of such a despicable sort.

      • Crogged says:

        Tracy is right-long codified for other industries, understood generally in common law, legally binding and no moral dilemma at all for the good people selling guns or cigarettes or alcohol. Buyer beware, where’s the hand washing basin and when can we shut down Planned Parenthood and the contraception deception? No wonder BW sometimes comes across as crazy, you have to pick your battles-can’t fight all of them.

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        Tracy – Your analogy is BS. And it is obvious that the comparison hurts your case.

        If the seller of a pickup sold to an underage person that was visibly intoxicated, that would be closer to the facts in this case. But to make it better, Ford and other manufacturers would be fighting successfully to stop licensing of drivers and removing all liability of the manufacturer and the seller and the customer. All the time denying that the carnage on the highway matters, and “Oh well, stuff happens”.

        Now that I think about it, the auto industry has just as much or more reason to fight these constrictive laws and regulations. After all, the god given right of freedom of movement is just as self evident as the right to self-defense.

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        Of course, I’m talking about the Wisconsin trial.

      • objv says:

        unarmed, I believe we have two scenarios going on here. One would be liability of a seller after a legal purchase to an unimpaired customer and the second would be liability after a purchase made to a clearly impaired customer.

        Selling a car or a gun to a buyer who is clearly impaired and hurts someone should be grounds for prosecution of the seller no matter what.

        However, some are calling for liability of the seller or manufacturer based purely on the basis of a gun being dangerous and used in a future crime. Thus, Tracy’s example of someone buying a potentially dangerous, killer Ford F-150 is perfectly valid.

        BTW, have I mentioned that my husband and I love, love, love our new F-150? However, any accidents, not due to any manufacturing defect, would be our fault.

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        Yes, you are right. But only to a certain extent. I did add that my argument applied to one specific case. But it applies generally to the other also. My analogy makes much more sense that his.

        Try to imagine an auto industry using the same logic and tactics.

        After I typed the above line, I rethought it and realized it isn’t the gun manufacturers that fight tooth and nail against gun safety. Evidence is that a couple of manufacturers did implement features in an effort to make a safer gun. But they were ostracised by certain groups and removed these features from later models.

        And I maintain the auto industry has the same right (or lack of) to do so. And to say that the 2nd amendment doesn’t mention autos minimizes the self evident right of self-defense. Your right to self defense does not guarantee a right to gun. Just as your self evident right to mobility does not guarantee the right to drive a Ford F150.

        Can we get together and start the NFA. (National F150 Association). You own one and have never killed anyone and you have warned your children not to touch. So we need to get rid of all these infringements like titles and transfer of such and liability insurance. After all our God Given right to movement is paramount.

    • unarmed, I’m not up to speed on the Wisconsin case. Assuming the retailer knowingly colluded in a (illegal) straw purchase, that retailer would correctly be treated as an accessory to any downstream misconduct by actors using the illegally sold goods – kinda the same deal as your example of the dealer selling the pickup to a drunk 15 year old. I wouldn’t read anything further into the Wisconsin case, assuming the facts are as publicly stated.

  8. n1cholas says:

    Brooks wasn’t MIA for the past 10 years. He was an enabler. And before he was an enabler, he was an official mouthpiece of Bill Kristol’s The Weekly Standard, attacking Democrats as the party of lunacy, and describing Bush and his buddies as the sane, compassionate conservatives who were required to operate the machinery of State.

    His shtick, chronicled by the blogger Driftglass, has been as an enabler who screams loudly and proudly that BothSidesDoIt™, enabling the lunatics on the right to have anonymous, equally-as-bad foils so that the lunatics could continue being lunatics without anyone in the media having to point out that one party was batshit insane.

    The only reason Brooks isn’t spouting his BothSidesDoIt™ BS now is because the Republican party has been rubbing their own shit in their hair in public and are trying to argue that if you aren’t also rubbing your own shit in your hair, that you’re just a lib-tard (h/t Driftglass, who has, literally, chronicled this in nearly encyclopedic quality over the years).

    And Brooks, being Brooks, safely tucked away in his DC mansion, has an aversion to rubbing his own shit in his hair in polite company.

    Give him a week or two, and he’ll be back to pointing out that while sitting Republican Congressmen, Senators, Governors, and Presidential candidates are batshit insane, there are also liberal commenters posting anonymously on websites on the internet, therefore BothSidesDoIt™, you see.

    • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

      In other news:

      Dennis Hastert, founder of the now sorta creepy “Hastert rule”, is facing actual prison time, John Boehner is trying to rush a debt-ceiling bill at the last minute that everyone will hate and the “Super Amazingly Pure, Fresh and So Clean Faction” (other wise known as the Really Real Conservative Caucus are pouring fresh glasses of haterade in Paul Ryan honor as the establishment does nothing in his defense to bolster his bid for Speaker.

      http://www.politico.com/story/2015/10/paul-ryan-house-republicans-speaker-conservatives-214806

      Now Mr. Ryan, why haven’t you decided to pursue the Speakership while you can? Think of all the fun you will have… like these guys!

      • 1mime says:

        I hope you read the piece by The Weekly Sift on the back story on the Speaker. This guy gets it cold. He further lists a few of the “special” demands, aka “stipulations” that the Freedom Caucus say any speaker they support must adhere to. It will wreck government as we know it.

        Read it and let me know if you feel differently on the speaker issue. Politico’s piece was weak in comparison.

  9. tuttabellamia says:

    Mime, I like Kathleen Parker of the Washington Post.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Darn. The last shall be first.

    • 1mime says:

      Most of the time, I do too. She can get snarky but she does offer an interesting point of view. I like Collins because she is able to skewer a point with humor and be very clever in the process. The series between she and Brooks was interesting. If you didn’t follow it while it was appearing, you can do a search in the nYT for the combo and enjoy their repartee in the rear view looking glass.

  10. Ah, David Brooks, the NY Times’ pet “conservative” (using the term “conservative” in its most expansive sense). In the spectrum of politic thought, Brooks hangs in there at about 5,100 angstroms. He’s the “G.” in Roy G. Biv.

    Mr. Brooks has to exercise a certain diffidence towards liberal shibboleths, lest he be spanked by the hand that feeds him. I’d put this most recent editorial in that category. Frankly, I don’t pay much attention to Mr. Brooks.

  11. objv says:

    Tutt, I hope you have more success watching (or listening) to the debate than I did. I tried watching the second showing on CNN last night and was asleep within fifteen minutes. It was a real snooze fest as far as I was concerned. 🙂

    • Griffin says:

      In fainess to the Democrats a political debate should generally be a “snooze fest”, as opposed to a reality tv-esque trainwreck one can’t look away from.

      • objv says:

        Griffin, sigh, your racism is showing. The Republican debate was lively and diverse. With two Hispanics and an African-American leading in the polls, the composition of the candidates was more reflective of the American public. In comparison, the Democrats on stage looked like vanilla pudding. Can’t the Dems come up with any candidates more appealing than liar, liar pantsuit on fire Hillary; avowed socialist Bernie or three old white dudes hardly anyone has heard of?

      • Griffin says:

        And wingnuts say liberals race bait.

      • objv says:

        Griffin, sorry to be picking on you. After eight years of liberals insisting that Republicans’ dislike of Obama was based purely on race, it feels good that the shoe is on the other foot now. Ben Carson is respected and admired by Republicans despite the purported racism attributed to the party. 🙂

      • Titanium Dragon says:

        Yeah, but as the Democrats will note, they found a black person who doesn’t like other black people very much. 😛

        People forget its only like, 15-20% of Republicans who are actively racist. Its not really a majority within the party; it just sounds that way because they make lots of noise and “person doesn’t make inappropriate racial remark” isn’t exactly news.

    • objv says:

      Oops. Wrong place. My comment should go below Tutt’s way at the bottom.

      Hmmm, maybe the debate made me more drowsy than I realized. I should have recorded it to use for insomnia.

    • vikinghou says:

      You must have become bored because they were behaving like adults.

      • objv says:

        Viking, the only one not behaving like an adult was the Donald. That said, he definitely added to the entertainment value of the debate. 🙂

    • tuttabellamia says:

      OV, you know me. The sight, and especially the sound, of people bickering upsets my delicate sensibilities. 🙂

  12. Griffin says:

    I get why center-right pundits like Brooks took so long to understand the extremism of the Republican Party, namely denialism and hanging out at too many dinner parties where he interacted with mainly other wealthy, well-educated Republicans who can project sanity and self-restraint.

    By why does the mainsteam media play along with them as well? CNN was practically going easy on the Republicans in their debate in comparison to how they were with the Democrats, and the toughest questions they asked had them using the other candidates as “middlemen” to ask it (“Mr.Trump say about you”… “Mr. Bush says about you”… etc.). It’s basically another way of saying “some people say…”

    And then there was them going along with the Planned Parenthood video nonsense, not bringing up they were proven hoaxes, and seemingly agreeing that social security would go “insolvent” tommorow if something radical wasn’t done today. What would it take for them to treat the GOP like the radical political party it is?

  13. stephen says:

    Yes I read David Brooks piece. I read the NYT everyday electronically. I also read a number of other newspapers and news magazines. I have often shown up at political meetings to plead with my elected leaders to abandon the crazies and do the peoples business. But as long as sane conservatives do not vote in the primaries and the crazies do to survive politicians will support the crazies agenda.

    I agree with David’s definition of conservative.

    “By traditional definitions, conservatism stands for intellectual humility, a belief in steady, incremental change, a preference for reform rather than revolution, a respect for hierarchy, precedence, balance and order, and a tone of voice that is prudent, measured and responsible. Conservatives of this disposition can be dull, but they know how to nurture and run institutions. They also see the nation as one organic whole. Citizens may fall into different classes and political factions, but they are still joined by chains of affection that command ultimate loyalty and love.”

    My how we (GOP) have drifted from this. There are only handful of conservative writers who write anything consequential or reality base currently. You are one of the few Lifer. I have to read more progressive writers usually to get anything useful.

    As you have written our task if we should choose to accept it would be reforming our party and that means a hostile take over. Difficult but not impossible.

    • 1mime says:

      Boy, let’s parse that definition of a conservative more specifically by lifting the more salient points:

      intellectual humility
      steady, incremental change
      reform rather than revolution
      respect for hierarchy
      precedence, balance and order
      tone of voice that is prudent, measured and responsible.
      can be dull, but they know how to nurture and run institutions
      see the nation as one organic whole

      When taken individually, this definition is the antithesis of the GOP organization.

      I’ve been reading several pundits who say that Wall Street is much more concerned about the probability that government will be shut down this time. End of the year in the market is when fourth quarter dividends and capital gains are paid….not to mention bonuses for market brokers. Hitting them in the pocketbook (irrespective of the complete idiocy of defaulting on America’s debt that is already approved and obligated “just” as a ploy to achieve over highly controversial goals) is getting their attention. The other undeniable factor, of course, is the complete structural breakdown of the republican party. Too many risk factors, no one capable of fixing it.

      • stephen says:

        I have money in the stock market. But I would be willing to take a licking just to have the big wigs of Wall Street to get the crud kicked out of them. This problem would of never happen if they had not funded the Chaos. Could not happen to a more deserving bunch.

      • 1mime says:

        I agree about culpability of WS but there are a lot of innocent and retired people whose life savings could be hurt and no salaries coming in to replace the lost $$. There is also the fact that America has real financial obligations and should not hold them hostage to this bunch of undeserving men (F.Caucus, TP). It’s a game with them, Stephen, they couldn’t be having more fun than if they were in Vegas at the slots. That’s how little respect they have for the financial integrity and stability of our nation. And, that’s wrong.

      • n1cholas says:

        When I read those salient points you listed, I find that the Democratic party fits those points perfectly.

        Of course, in conservative delusional reality, the Democratic party is just a bunch of communists, which is why we now have universal health care, and the means of production have all been seized and given to the poors so there are no more wealthy people able to buy politicians and write laws through them.

        Also: Benghazi.

      • 1mime says:

        And, “emailgate”.

  14. briandrush says:

    Hmm . . .

    Chris, I’m going to offer a somewhat paranoid explanation for Brooks’ apparent change of heart involving a conspiracy theory. It’s always proper to view such ideas with deep skepticism, and I don’t suggest you make an exception, but toss this out for consideration just the same.

    Pundits on the right serve a paid purpose. That purpose is to serve the interests of the corporations that pay them. Until recently, those interests and the political interests of the Republican Party were more or less conjoined. The party followed a strategy of using — not serving — the anger of the Confederacy, mining it for votes, giving lip-service to its rage, but never seriously acting on it. It was a big bait-and-switch in which Republican politicians pretended to become the party of the social right, racists and homophobes, misogynists and bigots, while in reality serving the same capitalist interests that the GOP has always had near its heart.

    As we both know, that hasn’t worked out so well. The party is in the process of being taken over by the Confederates in a classic ride-the-tiger dilemma. I predicted a while back that the GOP establishment would either mount a counter-revolution and retake the party, or else abandon it and form a new one.

    I see this as evidence that the first course is being attempted. Brooks does not serve the Tea Party insurgents; he serves the GOP establishment. If he’s recognizing the danger of the insurgency and calling the situation as it really is, then that’s a sign the GOP establishment has come to its senses — possibly the turning-point event was Boehner’s resignation — and is mounting that counter-revolution.

    We’ll see how that works out. But the Tea Party can’t get anywhere without its alliance with the Republican Party’s capitalist wing, so whether the counter-attack succeeds or fails, this is the beginning of the Confederacy’s final end.

  15. Frustrated in Texas says:

    Brooks has been pointing this direction for many years and has been one of the few columnists I can read on a regular basis.

    It’s funny – the title of this blog is so true. As frustrated as I become with my own party, when I read folks on the left, I know I DEFINITELY can’t go that direction….. As Jeb! said (before running for president) – my positions have stayed the same, it’s the party’s that have changed. We used to find conservative solutions for real world problems. Now “we” just say that those problems don’t exist.

    • BigWilly says:

      “Why is it important for you to understand the subject of the Hegelian Dialectic? Because it is the process by which all change is being accomplished in society today. More importantly, it is the tool that the globalists are utilizing to manipulate the minds of the average American to accept that change, where ordinarily they would refuse it.

      The Hegelian Dialectic is, in short, the critical process by which the ruling elite create a problem, anticipating in advance the reaction that the population will have to the given crisis, and thus conditioning the people that a change is needed. When the population is properly conditioned, the desired agenda of the ruling elite is presented as the solution. The solution isn’t intended to solve the problem, but rather to serve as the basis for a new problem or exacerbate the existing one.

      When the newly inflamed difficulty reaches the boiling point of a crisis, it becomes the foundation upon which arguments may again be made for change. Hence, the process is repeated, over and over, moving society toward whatever end the planners have in mind.

      It’s also important to understand that as this process is being driven, arguments are created both for and against certain measures of change. All arguments are controlled. The presented solutions — each with varying levels of unadornment — are “debated” publicly by the manipulators or their minions. This is done until a perceived compromise has been reached on the best measure to take in route to solving the crisis. Then, the outcome of the “debate” — which purportedly weighs the concerns of the public with the mandate to do something — is enacted as public policy.

      Such is a summary of the Hegelian Dialectic. Though few in American society have ever heard of it, still fewer have not been profoundly impacted by its use in the effective neutralization of opposition in the formation of public policy.”

      It’s important to keep this in mind so that you are not stampeded. It’s commonly known (Hegel’s dialectic) in certain circles. Just look at the pervasive Marxist rhetoric expressed here.

      “They seem willing to die on almost any hill” By the way you have the weapon pointed in the wrong direction.

      • BigWilly says:

        http://www.amerikanexpose.com/hegel/ a reference for the above.

      • Crogged says:

        Infowars. Germans. Woodrow Wilson. Secular Humanists. The Planners.

        “What role does Barack Obama play in that struggle? A rather small one, as this book unintentionally shows. Had the Supreme Court overturned the Affordable Care Act, the right’s fever would not have dropped one degree, nor, I predict, will the patient come to its senses if the president is defeated in November. Is there a doctor in the house? Conservatives need a psychological specialist, someone at the level of the great Jewish sage and sometime physician Maimonides. In the late 12th century Maimonides received a letter from a group of rabbis in Marseille who had worked themselves into a frenzy over astrological predictions of the End Times. His prescription — I translate loosely from the Hebrew — was, Get a grip! “A man should never cast his reason behind him,” he warned, “for the eyes are set in front, not behind.” Excellent advice then, excellent advice now. And it sounds even better in German.”

      • dowripple says:

        Bravo Willy, very McCarthyesque. My take away from your Hegel site in the context of this thread: change bad, misogyny/racism/bigotry good. Or, “these so-called problems got us this far, didn’t they? Why change now?”

      • BigWilly says:

        Word salad is on the menu today.

        “It was a big bait-and-switch in which Republican politicians pretended to become the party of the social right, racists and homophobes, misogynists and bigots, while in reality serving the same capitalist interests that the GOP has always had near its heart.”

        So you say that the GOP has a heart? Look at these choices; I’m either social right and mebbe a racist, homophobe, misogynist, bigot, or worse, a Christian, or I have the equally tantalizing option of serving the same, cough, capitalistic interests that the GOP has always had at its heart.

        At least I’m not a total lying sack o’ merde like you.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Willy, as someone said, “never let a crisis go to waste.”

      • Crogged says:

        So I went around the world in a few clicks-beginning with the (sp) Amerikan expose. From a site in Oklahoma-a quote from the blessed John Adams. Rather feverish stuff everywhere, but then:

        ‘In 1818, some 42 years after declaring independence and at the age of 84, John Adams reflected on the American Revolution saying,

        “But what do we mean by the American Revolution? Do we mean the American war? The Revolution was effected before the war commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people; a change in the religious sentiments, of their duties and obligations… This radical change in the principles, opinions, sentiments, and affections of the people was the real American Revolution.” – John Adams

        It wasn’t Hegel or any Europeans who killed God and destroyed any possibility of self directed living without interference from some do gooder in an office far away.

        Good ol’ Americans did it.

        You’re welcome.

    • 1mime says:

      “now we just say that those problems don’t exist”……or, don’t matter.

    • 1mime says:

      What is it about those speaking from the left that you disagree with ?

  16. This is how parties die. They will likely split into two with the ultra-crazies on the right becoming the Tea Party (party) and the establishment GOP. Where the loons who want to carry on the culture war fit in is beyond me–probably with the Tea Party as they seem willing to die on almost any hill.

    The country needs at least two functioning parties. While I am a Democrat, I don’t think one-party rule is ever a good idea. There needs to be a balance, as Brooks notes in his column.

    The sooner the break-up happens, the better. In the meantime, the House Republicans had better learn to make common cause with the Democrats or there is going to be serious trouble from which we may never recover. McConnell should also keep his powder dry on nixing the filibuster as there’s a good chance the Republicans will be back in the minority in the Senate sooner rather than later.

    • 1mime says:

      Another blog I follow, The Weekly Sift, has a splendid post on what the Speaker crisis “really” is all about. He suggests the real reason isn’t a “who” but a “what”. Lots of good deep thinking in this post about a very clever game of political chess. He suggests that Obama and Boehner should really just do what they gotta do, saying “Aw, fukkit”.

      “The ultimate goal of the Tea Party isn’t to defund Planned Parenthood or even ObamaCare, it’s to complete their takeover of the Republican Party. They’re playing a long game, and even a defeat in the speakership battle could work to their advantage.”

      http://weeklysift.com/2015/10/12/what-the-speakership-battle-is-about/

  17. Tuttabella says:

    I enjoy reading David Brooks’s column in the New York Times, probably because it tends to be apolitical. He’s referred to as “conservative columnist David Brooks,” but his column is more cultural than political, with articles about character, simple living, meritocracy, and the like.

    The fact that he said anything about politics is a surprise.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      And his cultural articles don’t seem like they are meant to be particularly conservative, either. They are just the musings of a perceptive, observant, but detached writer. That’s been my impression.

      • 1mime says:

        Brooks has always been a political journalist but always jocular. Lifer is right to call him out for failing to acknowledge the problems of the GOP. Of course Brooks is not alone among conservative commentators who have been ignoring the serious problems within the Republican Party. The GOP emperor has Wanted to remind u that today is Barrett’s birthday. He’s w Paul so u can reach him that wayno clothes, that’s for sure.

      • 1mime says:

        Sorry about the cut and paste error. Computer out so having to use phone.

      • objv says:

        That’s OK, Mine. I hop u can find Brarret’s wayno birthday suit. (-:

      • 1mime says:

        Amazing how those things happen….not used to using my phone for the blog and can’t type or paste easily on it. I found a great tech guy who figured out my computer problem – video card had died………better that than the computer. He fixed that an lots of other “stuff” that I didn’t even know was a problem…..As for my fourteen year old carrot red-haired grandson, I would never forget him.

      • objv says:

        Mime, red hair has always been my favorite hair color, but neither of my kids or I have red hair. I will have to take consolation in seeing my red-haired nephew next month.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Ladies: Don’t forget your red-headed stepchildren!

      • objv says:

        What a blessing that I have no delicate sensibilities to upset. 🙂

      • objv says:

        Well, I’ve done it again – sorry, wrong place, Tutta!

        As far as having red-headed step-children, I’d probably favor them, but alas, my husband doesn’t carry the gene for red hair. I’m a carrier and so is my sister (and her husband) which explains my nephew’s delightful hair color.

        I’ve always wondered why there’s a prejudice against red hair. Like discrimination based on skin color, the persecution of “gingers” is ridiculous.

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        To combine this thread with BigWilly’s, I found divine revelation in the arms of a redhead in the early 60s.

  18. BigWilly says:

    Who gets to decide who a “credible” conservative? You’ve jumped into bed with every hair brained liberal “inevitability” so many times in the past I’m beginning to think you’re probably a fat lady in Xinshang paid by the PRC to disseminate anti-Republican propaganda.

    It is in this alternative reality, created wholly within the media, that we find any expression of any kind made by a Republican will be vetted immediately for suitability for use as either “racism” or “racism.” Or by extension “racism.”

    If you don’t find the “transformative” leadership coming out of Washington deeply alarming, well you’re just a fat lady having a tea party in China. You’re culturecidal.

    • goplifer says:

      Tell me more about this voluptuous woman in Xinshang. Stay on the line. Ignore the sirens and screeching tires outside…

    • 1mime says:

      BW, you actually support the antics of the hard right in C ongress? You don’t see the danger in shutting down our government and defaulting on Americas debt?

    • EJ says:

      “For every age is a dream that is dying
      And one that is coming to birth.”
      – John Nephew

      Culturecide isn’t a bad thing if it’s practised by the members of that culture. Americans get to choose what it means to be American, after all, just as we Europeans get to choose what it means to be European. We have chosen to put away the aristocrats and the empires and the tank divisions and embrace a world of computers and soy lattes and financial analysts. America gets to do the same. Everything that we currently do will, one day, be discarded. That’s fine. That’s natural.

      Insisting that everybody stick to a way of life that is outmoded, on the other hand, may not be culturecidal but it will harm the nation vastly more. The future is coming. Do you want your people to live in it or not?

      • 1mime says:

        The challenge EJ, is prodding indolent and intellectually lazy Americans into assuming their responsibility to determine what kind of nation is best. I can state unequivocally, that the hard right does not represent a lifestyle or set of values that I can live with nor ones that I feel will take America into a strong future.

      • BigWilly says:

        EJ, I have no desire to live in your future. If that isn’t abundantly clear I don’t know what more to do.

        It’s obvious, to me, that the only choice I have is to fight for it now. I will support the Freedom Caucus, the TEA Party, and any other willing parties, in order to save my culture from the evil to come.

      • texan5142 says:

        What evil? please specify.

      • BigWilly says:

        “What evil? please specify”

        Not you.

      • n1cholas says:

        BigWilly;

        The rest of the civilized world is moving in a relatively similar direction, and dragging your feet simply makes the US transition that much more painful.

        So, you think we need to burn the village to the ground in order to save it?

      • EJ says:

        BigWilly, sadly you can’t save your culture from itself. I can’t save mine either: they’re in the hands of our children. At most we can delay the change until we ourselves die, but sooner or later the culture is going to be what the children want to make it.

        If you want to help, then instead of fighting change you should embrace it and help lead it somewhere that you think will be productive.

    • Crogged says:

      A conservative complaining of an ‘alternative reality created wholly within the media’. Good, clean, fun.

  19. vikinghou says:

    I’ve also noticed Brooks’ last few columns and noted his sudden dismay concerning the GOP. Certainly he hasn’t been oblivious to the direction the party has been headed. I wonder which straw finally broke the camel’s back? No doubt Brooks will be denounced as a super RINO. Perhaps this is one more piece of evidence that the party is going to split.

  20. csarneson says:

    Brooks also seems to accept no amount of the blame for his participation in the ruin of the party. I don’t seem to recall him speaking up each week in his column as the GOP picked yet another crazy issue to make a “principled” stand on. In fact he was often there subtly encouraging them.

    • 1mime says:

      I’m still waiting for Chris ladd’ to accept the futility of the Republican Party and form a new one.

      No mention here of the Democratic debate. I couldn’t help notice the civility and substantive discussion as compared with the circus of the GOP debates. The viewership was smaller than the GOP debates but much higher than expected. Those who took time to watch saw debate as it should be. Viewers had an opportunity to learn vs being subjected to theatrics.

      I do know this, if the leadership (?) of the Republican Party allows this nation to default on raising the debt ceiling, I can only hope that the party will feel the total disgust of the American people and soon. We really can’t wait until 2016 to get things to begin functioning.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Do you have to have cable TV these days to watch the debates? I don’t have cable.

      • easyfortytwo says:

        It’s not hard to find videos of the debate(s) on the internet (eg youtube). There are transcripts available also. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7L9IvVv1lNs

      • rightonrush says:

        Tutt, it was lived stream. Most of the debates etc can be watched without cable via the internet. http://cnnpressroom.blogs.cnn.com/2015/10/08/cnn-facebook-democratic-debate-live-stream/

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Thanks to you both.

      • Kitty says:

        Tuttabellamia – I watched it online at CNN

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I think there was a time when a live debate could be found on broadcast, on all 3 national channels — ABC, CBS, and NBC — at the same time. You couldn’t escape it.

      • dowripple says:

        “I don’t have cable.”

        Glad to know I’m not alone Tutt. I’ve been “unplugged” for 2 years now and my sanity/bank account are much better for it.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Dow, I had cable TV for only one year, in 1987, just so my mom and I could watch the Spanish language channel (SIN, now Univision), but once it went broadcast we canceled cable, and I have never looked back. I would love to cancel my internet service as well. I will keep you posted.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Off topic, but how do people watch the Astros and the Rockets these days without cable? The games used to be available on broadcast TV, at least the away games, and the home games were on radio only.

        Now I have to depend exclusively on radio, which is cool, because there is something very special about listening to games on the radio.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I guess I am showing my age (nearing the big FIVE-OH).

      • 1mime says:

        Tutta, I have enjoyed the dual journalistic pieces in the NYT between Gail Collins and David Brooks. I’m convinced it was Gail who brought David to his senses (-: !

      • dowripple says:

        I get my money’s worth for the internet, but I couldn’t say the same thing about cable. Cool story! I wonder what you paid in 1987, that was before I was in college. I remember my parents complaining about the cable bill, and I think it was in the $40/month range (no HBO of course). 🙂

      • dowripple says:

        “how do people watch the Astros and the Rockets these days without cable?”

        I don’t, I listen to the radio… 🙂

        (Full disclosure, I will be at my icehouse tonight for game 5)

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Dow, I know the service was Warner Cable, it was basic service, without the 3 movie channels (HBO, TMC, and the third one which started with an M), and yes, it was about $40/month.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Dow, radio is my TV. I listen to NPR, BBC News, BBC 4 and 4 Extra, which specialize in plays and dramas. And I love audiobooks. I am a big fan of the spoken word.

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