Sunday, March 08, 2009


The left blogosphere is beginning to shower David Brooks with praise for saying this:

The problem with [Republicans in Congress] and the problem with Limbaugh in terms of intellectual philosophy is they are stuck with Reagan. They are stuck with the idea that government is always the problem. A lot of Republicans up in Capitol Hill right now are calling for a spending freeze in a middle of a recession/depression. That is insane. But they are thinking the way they thought in 1982, if we can only think that way again, that is just insane.

These aren't brilliant insights -- they're plain statements of fact. It's only in the my-goodness-aren't-the-emperor's-clothes-lovely world of the GOP that he can be deemed to have uttered anything extraordinary. And he isn't being brave -- saying these things shouldn't be any more of an act of bravery than saying "The sky is blue" or "Hitler was a bad person," especially considering that he writes for The New York Times and does commentary for PBS and NPR. What punishment could he have feared?

And let's not get carried away -- this is the same guy who, a few days ago, called Barack Obama's budget "uber-partisan," the result of "a promiscuous unwillingness to set priorities and accept trade-offs, and the work of "a party swept up in its own revolutionary fervor." He may differ somewhat with congressional Republicans on proposed solutions, but his analysis of the Obama approach is just theirs run through a thesaurus -- it's essentially identical.

So, fine -- he sees the wingnut movement as deeply flawed. That's rare on his side, but it's the least we ought to expect of any rational human being. Mere rationality is not cause for hosannas.

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