Saturday, March 21, 2009


Nice of Megan to take some time off, as I've been in Florida since Thursday for some family and Yankee baseball time. Saw Teixeira hit his first homer as a Yank yesterday afternoon, and we're going to a game in Tampa vs the Bosox next week. Me likey.
Heehee, Binkley just scared off a family of racoons. He is a mighty warrior defending his lands. (The back porch I'm on is screened in, he wasn't at risk.)

Anyhow, I want to call quick attention to this Katha Pollitt piece about Asshat's Douthat's NYT gig. It's mostly right, but a teensy bit wrong, maybe.

Liberal blogger men are thrilled with the New York Times's appointment of 29-year-old Atlantic blogger Ross Douthat to replace William Kristol on the op-ed page. ...
"Smart move," says Matt Yglesias. Ezra Klein and George Packer agree he's "brilliant." At, Chris Hayes calls it a "fantastic choice," and Eyal Press looks forward to "thoughtful commentary."
The underlying implication, I believe, is that the male liberal bloggers named are more concerned about promoting members of the DC elite bloggers boys' club than they are about defending liberal values. If you take out "boys'", I think she's absolutely right. The problem is, there's clearly women in this club, be it self hating women like Megan or "feminism means I get what I want" quasi-libs like theGarance (at least that's how she comes across to me, I could be very wrong, don't much care if I am). That doesn't mean it's not a boys' club at heart with a wimmin's auxiliary, but I don't think gender solidarity, even unconscious, is behind these "liberal bloggers" ignoring Douthat's hackdom so much as the pack mentality of the next generation of DC media elite. Douthat will link to Ezra from his NYT blog, and Ezra will get marginally more hits, marginally advancing his career, and this is why Ezra is happy about it.

I don't know if I'm misinterpreting Pollitt's views, and I want to emphasize this is a small nit to pick. Douthat's gender politics are obviously wrong and disturbing. I also want to make clear I'm not trying to tell Ezra or Matty Y who it's ok for them to be friends with. If they like Douthat as a person, that's not my business. But that doesn't change the sheer stupidity of the response Pollitt notes. There are plenty of liberal male bloggers mocking Douthat's rise, but they tend to be the non-professional types who don't place careerism before honesty and their political values. That Douthat is a hack is, at least to me and the vast majority of those reading this, unquestionable. His work is ass, even aside from his values. That's why he came cheap, which was probably his main qualification. To call him "brilliant" or "thoughtful" can make that next dinner party much less tense, sure, but it's simply not true, demonstrably so.

My point in all this is actually quite simple; Ezra and Matty Y and their clique are all hacks, every last one of them. They are primarily about themselves, and their careers. All else is secondary. I want to like Chris Hayes, but his appearances on Olbermann are just annoying, he's such an eager little toady. Treating Douthat like someone to be taken seriously is a great example of why we shouldn't take these people seriously. The left has smarter, better, voices in the blogosphere than these careerist twunts, and I just wish certain blogs I love *cough*LG&M*cough* would stop linking to them. And yes, I know, it won't happen. Ezra, especially, has shepherded his career to the cusp of a breakout, despite a lack of balls and integrity. Argh.


It occurs to me that part of Pollitt's point was that the maleness of the liberal bloggers helped to inure them to the rank misogyny of Douthat's work. I plain don't know if that's the case, I'm just trying to offer another, possibly complementary, option.
Also, Megan noted the maleness of Douthat in her congratulatory note ("he was so clearly the only man for the job"), but we all know about her tendency to blame her own failings on the perceived misogyny of others. It's downright funny to see her trying to be subtle about it.
Alsoalso, in case Douthat somehow happens to see this; you'd have a better chance of giving a woman an orgasm if you actually tried to do so. In addition, it'd help if you weren't afraid of letting a woman fuck you, for once. Highly aroused women don't grow penises to take you from behind with, despite your nightmares that are truly fantasies. You're here, you're queer, get used to it.


Susan of Texas said...

If Pollet is quoting Phil Ochs in the title, woot!.

You could practically see the mental gears grind in McArdle's post congratulating Douthat--how will this benefit her?

clever pseudonym said...

I'm sorry, but after reading that "I'm on the pill" excerpt everyone passed around last week, I will never, ever, EVER be able to take that guy Douthat seriously, regardless of his output.

NutellaonToast said...

Yeah, the fact that Ezra and Mattie are "famous" is a constant source of bewilderment to me. They're such fucking pussies, it's like liberals WANT people to believe the stereotypes about them.

bulbul said...

Long, long time ago, I applied for a job at the Department of Foreign Affairs. I passed the first phase and was invited to the second, which consisted of a written test and an interview. I showed up, sat down, listened to the instructions and at the designated time, took out my pen and started filling out the test. When I was done with all the bullshit questions (the structure of the EU institutions, some geography, some general law...), I noticed there was still some time left and so I leaned back and took a look around. There were about 60-70 people in there, mostly men roughly my age. And in a rare moment of clarity, I noticed that all of them looked the same - same body type (I'm fat), same short hair, same haircut (I were my hair longish back then), clean shaven (I have a beard), same glasses (I don't wear glasses), even the same dark-colored suit (mine was sorta grey) and same eager look on their faces. In short, they all look like Chris Hayes. I got up, handed my test to the supervisors, told them I won't be returning for the interview part and got the hell out of that Kafkaesque nightmare. Every time I watch Countdown and Hayes is on, I shiver and then thank my lucky stars.
Who cares about Ezra and Yglesias?

Mr. Wonderful said...

I'm with clever pseud. But now I'm sitting here asking myself what was so repellent about it.

I only read the excerpt that's being circulated. Maybe its context (in yet another who-asked-you right wing memoir of my Harvard years) is along the lines of, "I was, at the time, an uptight, ultra-repressed, possibly closeted-gay, woman-fearing prig. So much so that the following incident took place...But I grew out of it."

I doubt it, though. Rather, I think he's not confessin', he's braggin'.

In which case what's repellent about it is packaging sexual repression as an instinctual class superiority--and then, as others have noted, doing nothing much to conceal the identity of the woman he's sneering at. "On the verge of congress with a fat girl who was slobbering all over my neck! Can you imagine?"