January 24, 2020

Ah! Here's one of those crazily long sentences that make me want to say Diagram this.

"It’s the 947th case in which we see that every second you spend on Twitter detracts from your knowledge of American politics, and that the only cure to this insularity disease is constant travel and interviewing, close attention to state and local data and raw abject humility about the fact that the attitudes and academic degrees that you think make you clever are actually the attitudes and academic degrees that separate you from the real texture of American life."

From "Joe Biden Is Stronger Than You Think/Here’s why he is still winning" by David Brooks (NYT). He's talking to journalists who've been wrong about Biden's staying power. Their wrongness is, he says, "the 947th consecutive sign" that "the coastal chattering classes" have an "insularity problem."

74 comments:

Aunty Trump said...

He’s not wrong.

Ralph L said...

Needs another comma before "and raw."

Ralph L said...

And "only cure" is three things?

rhhardin said...

Subject is "It" and verb is "is." Big predicate.

David Begley said...

Why Joe is winning:

1. The others are socialists.
2. Obama carryover goodwill.
3. Next man up.
4. His longstanding corruption hasn’t been exposed by the MSM.
5. His shilling for China hasn’t been exposed.
6. He’s a straight white male and Dem voters hate women and minorities.
7. His knowledge of the spying on Trump hasn’t been addressed.

rhhardin said...

The "it is" construction is used to get complexity out of the subject and into the predicate, when you have a complex subject.

tim maguire said...

Maybe so, but what about David Brooks' insularity problem? Recognizing dangers and avoiding them are not the same thing.

tcrosse said...

The only cure is more cowbell.

Ann Althouse said...

"Needs another comma before "and raw.""

It needs the comma removed after "knowledge of American politics."

If you put a comma after "raw, " then the other commas really should become semicolons. A better solution is to pick "raw" or "abject." Why do you need both? You already have "humility." It'd get rid of "abject," because "abject" is too often paired with "humility." It's the "scantily clad" problem.

tim maguire said...

David Begley said...
Why Joe is winning:


Joe is the safe choice, the "none of the above" candidate nobody really likes, but nobody hates either.

"Joe Biden?
Ehh, he'll do."

Hagar said...

He won't, but the others are even worse.

Ralph L said...

It needs the comma removed after "knowledge of American politics."

Or a new sentence.

So it should be "data, and raw, abject", though I agree about the semicolons. But I've read too much narciso to be confident with commas these days.

Mary E. Glynn said...
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Tom said...

The dems are soooo bad that Bad Touch Biden is winning. How insane is that?

Mary E. Glynn said...
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stevew said...

947 is a rather specific number that pretends to be real. Writing one millionth would have been more effective in conveying the point.

Mary E. Glynn said...
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Roy Jacobsen said...

I've been counting, and there are more than 947 signs that "the coastal chattering classes" have an "insularity problem."

Way more.

Want to see my spreadsheet?

whitney said...

David Brooks august opinion is so valuable because he's been right about the 947 times he predicted "this was it for Trump!"

peacelovewoodstock said...

"insularity problem"? This from the guy who wrote about Obama: "I remember distinctly an image of--we were sitting on his couches, and I was looking at his pant leg and his perfectly creased pant, and I'm thinking, a) he's going to be president and b) he'll be a very good president."

I do give him credit for being half right, but he's a half-wit, so that fits.



gilbar said...

David Brooks ?

Isn't that guy? that used to jack off, thinking about Barry O'Bama's Pant legs?
I guess Masturbation is today's theme?

Rory said...

Note that he's only acknowledging an insularity regarding what others are thinking. The insularity regarding his own wrong-headedness is way down the road.

Michael K said...

Adam Schiff "Opened the door" on Biden's corruption.

Schiff has probably never tried a case. Another Harvard lawyer with no experience. Well, according to his bio, he has some but he doesn't show it.

You opened the door.

Trial lawyers live in fear of that phrase.

When a trial starts, both sides know what the allegations are. Both have had enough discovery to know what the adversary will try to prove. Just as significantly, both know what their own vulnerabilities are. A litigator spends his pretrial time not just laying the groundwork for getting his own evidence admitted by the court; each side works just as hard on motions to exclude embarrassing or incriminating testimony — evidence that would be damaging to that side’s position but that a court may be persuaded to exclude because it is not clearly relevant.


Anyway, the entire Biden family are a cess pool of corruption. Frank may be worse than Hunter.

The Arkansas stripper might just walk through that door Schiff opened.

On Tuesday, an Arkansas judge ordered Hunter Biden, the youngest son of former Vice President Joe Biden, to appear in court and explain why he should not be held in contempt for violating numerous court orders to provide financial information in his Arkansas paternity case.

Hunter is in LA driving his new Porsche and living in his $12,000 a month house.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Run on sentences are a thing that I do all the time Much of what I write on the spur of the moment is stream of consciousness. I just blurrrp all the words out at once. Upon reading the words for editing, I can then remove the ands, add commas and try to put punctuation where it should be. [I'm still uncertain about semicolons.}

I don't always succeed because....meh....it is the internet. You would think, however, that a person who is writing for publication would have an editor to clean up the verbiage.

He isn't wrong though. Most of the academics, who pontificate about The American People, are isolated from real life. Ditto for just about all of the Media and our own Government.

Amadeus 48 said...

The words "abject depravity" should go in that sentence somewhere. Also, "insularity" doesn't quite do the job. I think "smug, pompous ignorance" should go in where "insularity" appears.

Aunty Trump said...

"to appear in court and explain why he should not be held in contempt for violating numerous court orders ...”

Somebody’s above the law.

Fernandistein said...

The sentence is a bunch of false statements strung together, so it could be livened-up with some ellipses, scare quotes and square brackets.

Here are the false parts:
947th
every second
the only cure
constant travel
close attention
raw abject humility
[degrees] separate you from the real texture

JAORE said...

Physician heal thyself.

readering said...

Cure to? Cure for.

Ann Althouse said...

I could write another post just on the use of “texture.”

He’s urging journalists to get to know human beings but writing about the as if they are cloth or sandpaper.

Ann Althouse said...

Well, we know Brooks cares @bout cloth... when it’s made into a pair of pants for Obama.

Ann Althouse said...

About

Amadeus 48 said...

And this in service of the Slow Joe campaign.

HAW-HAW!

Brooks never flipped. He is a Republican deep plant. Thanks, David.

It's all part of the Reagan Plan:

"After I'm gone, get a few fellas on the Times op-ed. Sell 'em as moderate conservatives--people like that Brooks guy that Buckley likes. There's this Stephens kid, too. He's about 15 now. Get him into the University of Chicago. Connie Black told me he'll season him up at the Jerusalem Post. Maybe Murdoch will give him a job at the WSJ. Anyway, when the time is right for Trump, get Stephens to follow Brooks over to the Times. About a year into Trump's first term, have Brooks and Stephens start writing flaming nonsense at the Times. Pushing the most absurd ideas. I think Biden will still be around. Get Brooks and Stephens to push Biden as a Wise Man whose time has come. It'll drive 'em crazy. Now get out of here. I have to talk to this Schiff kid. He wants a career in politics, and he thinks he can go deep into the Dems. I have a little idea for him, too. Grab some jelly beans on the way out."

Andrew said...

If Biden is the Democratic nominee, here is what Trump should do at their first debate:

1) Immediately after shaking Biden's hand, drop down and do 50 pushups. Then say, "Your turn, fat."

2) At some point in the debate, ask Joe if he's okay because his eye is turning red. It won't be true, but it will throw him off his game. Trump should also call him "Brundlefly".

3) Congratulate Joe on his new grandson, and inquire about his name.

4) Warn people at home not to play a drinking game in which you take a shot any time Biden slurs his speech or otherwise shows symptoms of one of his five brain aneurysms, because the game could kill you.

5) Speak a memorized phrase in Russian, just for the hell of it. Make it a complete non sequitur. When a moderator asks what it means, say, "It's like jazz. If I have to explain, you'll never know."

6) Maybe do a Chinese phrase as well. If a moderator asks him what it means, say, "Is Hunter here? He can translate."

7) End the debate by saying Biden reminds him of Ol' Yeller, but clarify that he is not advocating violence.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

Agreed the sentence is "crazily long." However, Hammond awards praise for apostrophe restraint.

In the 79 word "sentence" there is only one apostrophe, that being in an unambiguous "it's"."

Brooks uses one contraction "Here's" in the linked headline. Brooks passes up two apostrophe opportunities in the two sentence clip.

He could have written "Joe Biden's Stronger..." thus needlessly burdening the reader to delay interpreting the apostrophe as a contraction or as a possessive ("Joe Biden's Stronger Campaign Team...")

Few contemporary "news" or opinion writers would have passed on the opportunity to contract the "he is" in "he is still winning" thus burdening the reader with the entropy between "he is" and "he has."

Abject drivel of subject matter aside, Hammond awards a B+ for apostrophe restraint.

Sebastian said...

"the coastal chattering classes" have an "insularity problem.""

Umm, yeah. But by preventing serious investigation, going beyond Peter Schweitzer, their insularity has aided and abetted Joe Quidproquo and his grifter family.

Bay Area Guy said...

@Begley

Why Joe Biden is winning (cont,)

8. Hasn't sniffed any woman's hair lately
9. Stopped groping woman & children
10. No more swimming naked
11. CornPop is likely dead
12. Hunter hadnt knocked up any more Arkansas strippers lately
13. "No Malarkey" Bus Tour hitting its stride

Dave Begley said...

I'm shocked none of the Dems are hammering Biden about his family's corruption as set forth in great detail in Peter Schwietzer's book. It is in their self interest to do so, but they are Swamp Dwellers.

And why doesn't CNN, MSNBC, WaPo and NYT do the same? They are supposed to be journalists.

Trump will absolutely hammer Joe with that book.

Dems are stupid not to attack Joe. They must not want to win very much.

Wince said...

Reminds me of that GRAMMARLY writing software ad you wait 5 seconds to click away from after at the start of of a YouTube video, where a run-on sentence is shown to be "grammatically correct, but it's wordy and hard to read..."

Maybe the disconnect Brooks observes at the retail level is attributable to Biden having been "insulated" from national scrutiny of scandal in the editorial suites of the MSM and not fully tested. And maybe Biden won't be until after primary votes in key states?

BOMBSHELL: NYT Reportedly Killed Story Revealing Obama WH Meeting With Whistleblower about Bidens and Burisma

Dave Begley said...

We really have a fucked up country when you look at the leading candidates of the Dem party.

Joe is not very smart, going senile and wildly corrupt.

Pete is a failed mayor of a small town.

Bernie is a near commie.

Liz is also a near commie, annoying as hell and a liar about her career.

And all of them are all in favor of the Green New Deal and open borders that would destroy this country in 20 years.

How pathetic.

DavidUW said...

Bernie is a “near commie”?

He’s a commie.

Levi Starks said...

The sickness is that Trump has been so successful in spite of the 24/7 Democratic effort to keep him out of the next election they no longer imagine which Democratic Candidate would be the best president only which candidate has a remote chance of beating Trump.

Amexpat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator'

Initially read that as "This comma has been ...".

Michael K said...

I'm shocked none of the Dems are hammering Biden about his family's corruption as set forth in great detail in Peter Schwietzer's book. I

My theory is that they are trapped. They have nobody else who looks remotely electable. Bloomberg is semi-moderate except for guns and soft drinks. But he is an annoying little twerp in public.

Bernie is a commie with crazy people in his campaign. Warren is a proven liar. Her hilarious own goal with the DNA is inexplicable.

Buttplug is a red diaper baby with no record of accomplishment. I haven't gotten to the Klobucar chapter in "Profiles" yet but it is in there,

Who do they have ? Harris and Sparticus seemed to be naturals but both flamed out early.

Nonapod said...

the only cure to this insularity disease is constant travel and interviewing, close attention to state and local data and raw abject humility about the fact that the attitudes and academic degrees that you think make you clever are actually the attitudes and academic degrees that separate you from the real texture of American life.

That's almost true. With regards to journalists, the number one thing I would recommend disengaging from Twitter completely, or if that's not possible absolutely minimizing your use if it. While traveling and visiting the dreaded "Red States" may be helpful, it may not be realistic for every journalist who isn't in the enviable position that Brooks is in. If travelling isn't possible, they should at least be more willing to hear and read other's viewpoints.

And "interviewing" seems a bit too formal. Just naturally conversing with regular people is probably more beneficial. People respond differently in interviews than they might in a normal conversation.

Basically, journalists need to endeavor to be less dismissive and close minded in their thinking. They need be willing to allow that they could be wrong sometimes. They need to remove themselves from the social media echo chambers and actually listen to what people who they may not agree with them are saying. It should be obvious by now that Twitter isn't the real world, and most of the opinions that are trumpeted the loudest their probably only represent a small minority of thinking.

rcocean said...

"It’s the 947th case in which we see that every second you spend on Twitter detracts from your knowledge of American politics. The only cure to this insularity disease is constant travel, interviewing, and close attention to state and local data. Along with a raw abject humility about the fact that the attitudes and academic degrees that you think make you clever actually separate you from the real texture of American life."

Took me 3 minutes, to make it clearer. And more concise. But then Brooks gets paid by the pound and has to fill up a column every week.

rcocean said...

Reading Trump and conservative twitter actually adds to your knowledge.

rcocean said...

You know what really separates people? Not twitter. Not Academic Degrees. Nope, its Italian gourmet cold-cuts.

Dave Begley said...

Obama ordered the FBI and CIA to spy on Trump.

Why isn't that the most important issue in America today?

When Durham starts indicting people, they will flip and rat out Barack.

rcocean said...

Lots of dumb talk about Sanders, Biden, and Warren on other websites. Biden is the front-runner. He will win unless stopped. He has the establishment and the black vote in his pocket. So, how can Bernie or Warren stop him, if they are splitting the progressive vote? They can't.

Further, Bridget may love Bernie, but Black Bridget doesn't. Blacks didn't like Bernie in 2016 and they don't like him now. That's 20% of the D party in Biden's pocket. If Bernie drives out Warren and Klobblob, it will just be a rerun in 2016 with Biden winning instead of Hillary.

Howard said...

Obamba was doing his job investigating the Trump international crime family. He didn't outsource it to Ukraine.

Howard said...

The fix is in against Bernie. Barack Hussein Obama is making noises that Bernie needs to be destroyed to save the Democrat Party. I told my TDS wife that the DNC establishment prefers that Trump wins rather than Bernie becoming the titular head of the Democrats.

Sam L. said...

I trust NOTHING in the NYT (the waPoo, too!) And David Brooks is the poop on the ice cream!

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

Andrew @8:19: Lol.

jaydub said...

"He’s not wrong."

A more accurate statement would be that he is not wrong about this particular opinion as opposed to the other dozens of opinions he espouses which are absolutely, unequivocally and explicitly horse shit.

narciso said...

He tried the case of the idiot bureau agent, richard miller, who fell for a sparrow, in a clumsy recruitment attempt gone wrong.

Birkel said...

I think Joe Biden is a sure-fire loser.
So maybe Brooks is correct.

narciso said...

Actually he did in part leschenko provided the black ledger, steele worked for deripaska akmetshin is married to a ukrainian and so on

narciso said...

Leschenkos leak was papered over by a pripyat judge (ukrainian swamp)

Kirk Parker said...

Select All
Delete

Ahhhh, that's better!

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Joe is leading the other DemocRATS because he represents pre-Obama American politics to a lot of people. He's not uber-woke like Bernie, Liz, or Mayor Pete. If he drops out there will be a lot of swing and center-left voters who will stay home in November. This is why it's vital that no one learn anything about Hunter Biden's financial dealings.

AZ Bob said...

... the attitudes and academic degrees that you think make you clever are actually the attitudes and academic degrees that separate you from the real texture of American life.

You mean the Ivy League isn't so great?

narciso said...


Brooks is the perpetual left turn at al buquerque


https://mobile.twitter.com/LeeSmithDC/status/1220733892468060160

gspencer said...

Before it was repealed, 26 USC section 341(e), on collapsible corporations, was the worst.

Michael K said...

I told my TDS wife that the DNC establishment prefers that Trump wins rather than Bernie becoming the titular head of the Democrats.

Correct and impeachment is now about the Senate, not removing Trump, which they know is impossible,

Nadler, as usual, stepped in it yesterday accusing the Senate of a coverup before they even heard the defense, Pissed off Murkowski, which is not easy to do as she thrives in the swamp.

Yancey Ward said...

Yes, it looks like all the knives are out for Sanders now on the Democrat side. I predict the anti-Sanders thing is going to backfire spectacularly.

Roughcoat said...

David Brooks?

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

ExplainMeMore said...

David Brooks is practically useless as an opposing pundit to Mark Shields on the PBS Newshour.

Rabel said...

Raw abject humility about about his attitudes and academic degrees is not what comes to mind when the name David Brooks pops up.

mikee said...

List Joe Biden's positions on foreign policy going back to the 1970s.
Count how often he was on the right side of history, and the wrong side of history.
You will see why he should never be allowed to hold any position of responsibility or authority.

readering said...

I used to watch Brooks-Shields, which is Newshour separately distributed, but stopped when it sounded same week after week. Don't care for that even when in agreement.

But I don't fault folks for discounting Biden after '88 and '08. 8 years with Obama makes the difference. Not for me.

Big Mike said...

Right after the 2016 General Election Brooks vowed to get out into the heartland and meet Trump voters. Does anyone know whether he ever got west of Newark except to fly out to California? Doesn’t seem like it.

rcocean said...

"I used to watch Brooks-Shields". I used to watch too, but didn't watch much, because it reminded me of Gergan-Shields. Their conversations used to go like this:

Shields: Those Goddamn Republicans are horrible. [Pushes Democrat talking point]
Gergan: There's good and bad on both sides. Extremes are bad -Right and Left.

Hilariously, Gergan was described as a "Reagan Republican" before he quit and went to work for Clinton.

rcocean said...

Gergan and Brooks are Moderate Republicans which means they want to lose, but not too quickly.