Friday, November 12, 2010

I Love David Brooks

only because he provides me with such an easy hit. In his op-ed (brought to my attention by Dean Baker in his Beat the Press blog, which you should all be skimming, at least, every day) last week, he was rattling on about what President Obama needed to do to win back disaffected voters. And he seriously makes the argument that people are not concerned about mundane things like jobs and incomes, but about values. And then, of course, he raises the fiction that Americans are addicted to debt and spending, unlike our forefathers and foremothers who, with grim rectitude, spent their evenings checking their balance sheets. But Americans have seen the light, and decided that Republicans are better able to keep us all on the path to debt-reduction.

But he doesn't stop there. It's not just debt-reduction. More values come into play, causing deep distress among the populace. So we find that Obama should:

"demonstrate that even though he comes from an unusual background, he is a fervent believer in the old-fashioned bourgeois virtues: order, self-discipline, punctuality and personal responsibility.

Gee, aside from the creepy semi-fascism of the list, I just haven't noticed a lot of concern on the part of the populace that the President is late for appointments. And I'd like to think that the populace is smart enough to figure out that whether or not we're on time would have little impact on the financial meltdown we suffered.

And I don't think Brooks is terribly concerned about the personal responsibility of, for instance, bankers. Otherwise they'd all be heading off to serve long prison terms.

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