The NYT’s David Brooks is not one of the towering intellects of our times. If you go to that link you’ll find that Glenn Greenwald has assembled a cornucopia of David Brooks’ errors, including such gems as:
EITHER SADDAM HUSSEIN will remain in power or he will be deposed. President Bush has suggested deposing him, but as the debate over that proposal has evolved, an interesting pattern has emerged. The people in the peace camp attack President Bush’s plan, but they are unwilling to face the implications of theirown. Almost nobody in the peace camp will stand up and say that Saddam Hussein is not a fundamental problem for the world. Almost nobody in that camp is willing even to describe what the world will look like if the peace camp’s advice is taken and Saddam is permitted to remain in power in Baghdad, working away on his biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons programs . . .
So now we stand at an epochal moment. The debate is over. The case has gone to the jury, and the jury is history. Events will soon reveal who was right, Bush or Chirac. . . . But there are two nations whose destinies hang in the balance. The first, of course, is Iraq. Will Iraqis enjoy freedom, more of the same tyranny, or a new kind of tyranny? The second is the United States. If the effort to oust Saddam fails, we will be back in the 1970s. We will live in a nation crippled by self-doubt. If we succeed, we will be a nation infused with confidence. We will have done a great thing for the world, and other great things will await
I imagine that Brooks makes at least a six-figure income, writing columns for the NYT (and with his television appearances he’s no doubt a millionaire) and it must be a pretty sweet gig. Writing any fool thing that pops into your stupid head and never having to explain yourself when you turn out to be catastrophically wrong, even nine times out of ten wrong.
A big part of Brooks’s shtick is (apparently, I don’t trouble myself to read him with any regularity) how he understands how “regular” or “ordinary” US-Americans think. And he explains the common horse-sense of the ordinary god-fearin’ Amuriken to the chattering classes and the upscale readers of the NYT. Brooks’s understanding of the average US-American is, apparently, a figment of his imagination. He infamously chided the Harvard Law School graduate Barack Obama for his elitism and stated that Obama (unlike Brooks supposedly) would have difficulty relating with the regular folks at the salad-bar at an Applebee’s Restaurant. It turned out to be the case that Brooks himself would have difficulty interacting with the people at the salad-bar at this middlebrow family restaurant chain because Applebee’s doesn’t have a salad-bar.
So, we see that Brooks is, therefore, both a complete idiot whether commenting on foreign or domestic issues. Once again though, this lazy-minded incompetent no doubt commands over a million dollars a year in payment for his ignorant ramblings.
How fitting it is, therefore, that this pompous piece of shit sees fit to lecture the people of Haiti, in their hour of great suffering, on the necessity for self-reliance and hard work!
As Lawrence E. Harrison explained in his book “The Central Liberal Truth,” Haiti, like most of the world’s poorest nations, suffers from a complex web of progress-resistant cultural influences. There is the influence of the voodoo religion, which spreads the message that life is capricious and planning futile. There are high levels of social mistrust. Responsibility is often not internalized. Child-rearing practices often involve neglect in the early years and harsh retribution when kids hit 9 or 10.
Interesting Mr. Brooks. Do please go on …
We’re all supposed to politely respect each other’s cultures. But some cultures are more progress-resistant than others, and a horrible tragedy was just exacerbated by one of them.
Really? What should we do then?
Fourth, it’s time to promote locally led paternalism. In this country, we first tried to tackle poverty by throwing money at it, just as we did abroad. Then we tried microcommunity efforts, just as we did abroad. But the programs that really work involve intrusive paternalism.
These programs, like the Harlem Children’s Zone and the No Excuses schools, are led by people who figure they don’t understand all the factors that have contributed to poverty, but they don’t care. They are going to replace parts of the local culture with a highly demanding, highly intensive culture of achievement — involving everything from new child-rearing practices to stricter schools to better job performance.
It’s time to take that approach abroad, too. It’s time to find self-confident local leaders who will create No Excuses countercultures in places like Haiti, surrounding people — maybe just in a neighborhood or a school — with middle-class assumptions, an achievement ethos and tough, measurable demands.
This disgusting cretin hasn’t the slightest idea about what he’s talking about, as usual. Might it not be the case that flooding the agricultural economy of Haiti with massively subsidized US agricultural products might have been devastating to the Haitian people’s economy and their self-reliance? Might it not be the case that Haiti’s insanely corrupt ruling class would not have such an easy time of fleecing their country were it not for the fact that the USA, Canada and France and the United Nations do such efficient work of frustrating every attempt by the people of Haiti to overthrow this gang of thieves and murderers? How can we blame the people of Haiti for the mismanagement of their country when 98% of them haven’t had the chance to manage it?
David Brooks, to repeat, is an incompetent dunderhead. He is paid an exorbitant amount of money to write about foreign and domestic affairs and he is consistently wrong about pretty much everything. This jack-ass doesn’t have the right to lecture meabout the value of hard work, let alone the entire nation of Haiti. David Brooks deserves to windex the video-screens of peep-show booths. Open up your mouth David, I need to take a piss.
I’ve written about Haiti several times on my blog. Not because I can claim to be any expert on the country, but because I’m so deeply ashamed at the enormity of our crimes against these people. I’ve tried to resist talking about Haiti and the tragedies resulting from the earthquake because I sincerely believe that the focus must be on trying and convicting stephen harper for war crimes, exposing him for his cowardice and gross abuse of power in proroguing parliament to escape the discovery of his criminal policies by the Special Committee on Afghanistan.
But the brazen self-satisfied hypocrisy of North America about our “generosity” towards Haiti and contemptible, racist, hypocritical garbage from scum such as David Brooks have compelled me to write about it.