Friday, April 14, 2006

Wanker du jour: David Brooks

The rolling disaster that is the inarguable legacy of the Bush presidency is now triggering an avalanche of delusional introspection, finger-pointing and revisionist history from the neocons and those who enabled their insanity.

With yesterday's column, "Exodus mindset reminds us what Iraq could become" (behind the Selective wall, but reprintined in my local paper today), David Brooks gives us the singular pleasure of the verbal equivalent of a shotgun seat for his auto-colonoscopy. As you might expect, it ain't a pretty sight.

Bobo employs a horribly trite rhetorical device to share his internal debate: he names the internal voices "Mr. Future" and Mr. Past." Anyone care to wager which of those two wears the white hat in Bobo's movie?

Bobo puts all that is reality-based in the mouth of evil Mr. Past, though he exaggerates for dramatic effect. Mr. Past opens the dialogue:
Your problem is you don't understand the limits of what governments can achieve...The central lesson of the past three years is that societies are not that malleable... We need to change our mentality, scale back to more realistic expectations.

A bit too cynical perhaps, and drawing an overbroad conclusion, but Mr. Past sounds like a reasonable man.

And in this corner, Mr. Future:
The Exodus story reminds us that human beings can transform themselves and their situations. It reminds us that people who embark on generational journeys are the realistic ones...
So, let's review. Mr. Future bases his, um, futuristic argument on the Old Testament story. I'm not big on Biblical scholarship, so in case you are as ignorant as I am about the details, here's the Wikipedia summary:
The Exodus begins after Pharaoh's consent, and the Israelites leave Rameses to go to Succoth. The nobles of Egypt object to Pharaoh's consent, and so Pharaoh gathers together a large army to chase after the Israelites, who have by this point reached the Red Sea. Fortunately for the Israelites, they are divinely guarded, and are able to escape through the Red Sea, when Moses causes the waters to part. The waters collapse once the Israelites have passed, defeating Pharaoh, and the Israelites joyfully sing the Song of the Sea (13-14).

The Israelites continue their journey into the desert, and once in the Wilderness of Sin, they complain about the lack of food. Listening to their complaint, God sends them a shower of quail, and subsequently provides a daily shower of manna from heaven. Once at Rephidim, the thirst of the people gets to them, so water is miraculously provided from a rock.

OK, got that? The future is the 3000-plus year-old Old Testament. Mannah from Heaven. Parting of the Red Sea. I guess the future does not belong to the reality-based community.

But Bobo ain't through. Aligning Dubya's criminal folly to Moses is only the half of it:
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. learned from Exodus that it is not enough to sit back and let history slowly evolve.... So of all the lessons to learn from the past three years, the worst would be to settle back into your coldhearted acceptance of the status quo.
Just as there is no ethical, moral or logical line these fools will not cross if it serves them, Bobo proves there is no rhetorical device too reprenhensible. Can you really imagine Martin Luther King cheerleading for the Iraq war? Is there no end to the variations on "Hope is a plan" these fools will try to foist upon us?

Next time, Bobo, keep the pictures of your colon to yourself.


Blogger <-<--esoder<---<----<----- said...

I can't wait for the first anti-semitic post saying you don't believe in Exodus because you hate Christians. One of my favorite ironies is how many Christians don't know that that OT is a Jewish book.

That and when Christians supporting the death penalty say, "An eye for an eye," forgeting that Jesus brought them a new law.

But wait, maybe this is metaphor - perhaps the metaphorical "Red Sea" will be parted by a tactical nuke and radioactive quail will rain down to feed the people, subsequently followed by daily petro dollars. Maybe Brooks' biblical story isn't meant to be taken literally.

11:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brooks is such a tool.

10:19 PM  

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