April 10, 2020

"America has a history of settler colonization and capitalism that ruthlessly exploited natural resources and people, typically the poor, the migratory, the black and the brown...."

"What this crisis has revealed is that, while almost all of us can become vulnerable — even corporations and the wealthy — our government prioritizes the protection of the least vulnerable. If this was a classic Hollywood narrative, the exceptionally American superhero, reluctant and wavering in the first act, would make the right choice at this turning point. The evil Covid-19 would be conquered, and order would be restored to a society that would look just as it did before the villain emerged. But if our society looks the same after the defeat of Covid-19, it will be a Pyrrhic victory. We can expect a sequel, and not just one sequel, but many, until we reach the finale: climate catastrophe. If our fumbling of the coronavirus is a preview of how the United States will handle that disaster, then we are doomed."

Writes Viet Thanh Nguyen in "The Ideas That Won’t Survive the Coronavirus/Covid-19 is killing off the myth that we are the greatest country on earth" (NYT).

182 comments:

hawkeyedjb said...

Today's example of Why America Was Never That Great.

More to come.

Nonapod said...

Yet another America is awful and needs to be destroyed and remade article. The only difference here from the zillions of similar pieces written before it is that this time it's the coronavirus that has "revealed" this "truth" somehow.

MadisonMan said...

How is American history any different from that of any other region or country? How is the American response vis-a-vis wealth any different from the response in any other country?

MadisonMan said...

Meade, I have to ask: What is going on with those posts of yours that have nothing in them that appear and vanish?

mikeski said...

You know what was never that great?

The fucking New York Times.

chuck said...

Another pre-written article. The Times has a million of them.

MayBee said...

Imagine feeling this was what you needed to write, and then imagine this is what you thought you needed to publish.

It is nice for the Good People of New York to be able to read this and find something to hate themselves over and bathe themselves in their therapeutic tsk-tsking over their catastrophe porn.

Bay Area Guy said...

Who is this Leftwing idiot NYT opinion writer?

Perhaps, I am being redundant.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

It is always fair to ask, when criticising America, the West, or indeed any other people: Compared to whom?

Pardon me, I have to go do my nails. I'll check in for the answer when I get back.

MayBee said...

MadMan- I was wondering if Meade was sending a message because yesterday Ken B was accused of being Meade because he always comments first.

Jim Gust said...

Ha! Excellent point, mikeski.

Luckily I was not sipping my coffee as I read it.

FleetUSA said...

These guys put hate in the NYT to get more invites to prog parties and events. Maybe even some paying speeches to incite their low life.

traditionalguy said...

Do I hear the ring of jealousy that since the early 1700s the bad Americans have fought Empire after Empire to claim the USA and all of its resources for ourself and not for yours. We Scots Irish are not surrendering. Why would we ever do that? The Chinese Empire has just made the same mistake as the others.

Jupiter said...

You know, Althouse, we can't read these things, because they're behind a paywall and we are not going to send money to the Times.

"He came to the United States as a refugee in 1975 with his family and was initially settled in Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania, one of four such camps for Vietnamese refugees. From there, he moved to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where he lived until 1978."

Hey, sorry he doesn't like the service around here. Maybe he should crawl back to the shithole he is named after and see how he likes the Cong Flu.

D.D. Driver said...

Is the coronavirus teaching us that all the things we believed before coronavirus were true?

narciso said...

it's henry ford's you can chose any color as long as it's black,

narciso said...

he mainlined his howard zinn, with a chaser of jill Lepore,

Abdul Abulbul Amir said...

Time to sing that clown a hymn.

Him, him, screw him.

zipity said...



"He came to the United States as a refugee in 1975 with his family..."



Wow. Talk about an ungrateful POS. Perhaps he should avail himself of some other "perfect" country on this rock.

Let me know when he's found one.

MadTownGuy said...

More evidence that the official response was not about mitigation of COVID-19 as much as it was about restructuring the economy. See also: Green New Deal."

"It is important to remember that only a handful of the proposals in the Green New Deal involve climate change, and that they are simply the fig leaves covering up the naked socialist takeover of the U.S. economy that is being proposed. Free college? Check. Free home remodeling? Check. Massive federal investment in mass transit and other infrastructure? Check. Guarantee of high-paying jobs for everyone? Check. Free health care? Check. Free housing? Check."

Meade said...

"Meade, I have to ask: What is going on with those posts of yours that have nothing in them that appear and vanish?"

Contact tracing.

Lurker21 said...

You may be giving a skewed view of the world and encouraging some unsavory feelings by posting articles like this.

My got wants to say to Viet Thanh Nguyen, "You won the war. Now go home."

Admittedly, my gut is one nasty SOB.

As long as I give him food every two hours, I can usually keep him under control, but you don't want to be around when he acts up.

Mark said...

Still exposing yourself to the NYT contagion, I see.

Sorry, I'll socially distance myself from it.

Freeman Hunt said...

Like a tidally locked moon, climate catastrophe seems locked eternally in the near future.

robother said...

The "migratory"? So those evil Amerindians were oppressing the migrating Western Europeans? That, at least, is a fresh take from the New York Times. As someone who grew up a short distance from Little Big Horn battlefield (at which one Irish forebear was killed), it never occurred to me to see this as pure xenophobia on the part of Sitting Bull. Thanks for opening my eyes!

Fred said...

So the solution to our problems is to "Make Colonization Great Again".

gilbar said...

okay, living on the very edge of the buffer zone* between the Sac and the Sioux; i have to Wonder

IF there were never any terrible white people here in iowa;
would the Sac and the Sioux have put down their differences, and lived peaceably together?
Maybe they could have united, in their genocide against the Winnebago??
Or, would they have continued their endless war against each other; killing Winnebago separately?
Of course, the Ioway would have been killed off, one way or the other


buffer zone* Fourth Treaty of Prairie du Chien

John Cunningham said...

Yo Nguyen, if it's so horrible here, how about you get the f*ck out of here and move your yellow *ss home?

MadisonMan said...

I've been to two open stores on Monroe St today, but I will not wait in line to go into Trader Joe's. So I've been in Contact with (thinks) 3 other people today. Four, if my wife is included. (I define 'in Contact' to be within 10 feet for more than 2 seconds)

bleh said...

How exactly are we prioritizing the least vulnerable when the least vulnerable are forced to stay at home unemployed or risking unemployment for the sake of the few most vulnerable?

Original Mike said...

I've got to stop reading your NYT posts. I don't read it because its identity fixation is both vile and depressing. But it just dawned on me all the second-hand NYT reading I'm doing.

Mark said...

I will not wait in line to go into Trader Joe's

I skip the bread lines too. But I did go into a Safeway yesterday and saw that they are going Soviet-style in their own way with all the empty shelves.

rhhardin said...

The Vietnam "train driver" videos are much more interesting than the American equivalent on youtube.

Dave Begley said...

"We can expect a sequel, and not just one sequel, but many, until we reach the finale: climate catastrophe."

This guy didn't get the memo. The covid19 models were wildly wrong and the CAGW models are even worse. The CAGW scam is over!

Josephbleau said...

This article is part of a defensive first strike to support warming. The Times knows that warming is holed below the waterline due to the failure of cronodeath modeling in the present pandemic. A reaction is needed to retain possession of conquered territory.

Char Char Binks said...

ESL;dr

Dave Begley said...

And I do love how the Left makes *everything* about class and race. The struggle!

What a bunch of opportunistic fuckheads.

Robert Cook said...

"It is always fair to ask, when criticising America, the West, or indeed any other people: Compared to whom?"

Compared to ourselves, compared to our national aspirations, (as represented by the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution), compared to the tales we tell ourselves about ourselves, compared to what we could or should be doing.

This is true of any society. It is childish and neurotic for any nation's people to passionately declare their own "greatness," and suggests they fear it is not really true.

BUMBLE BEE said...

Try to make it real, compared to what? Goddamnit.

Tommy Duncan said...

Fuck off, Viet Thanh Nguyen.

narciso said...

the French occupied his country for 80 years, round numbers, how have they been handling things,

YoungHegelian said...

@Assistant Village Idiot,

It is always fair to ask, when criticising America, the West, or indeed any other people: Compared to whom?

Yes, that is always the question. Most often the failure comes when the historical experience of the US is weighed against some imaginary standard that exists in the mind of the Left. Or, it's some strange history of some relatively minor & always very white country (The Left -- "Sweden" -- The Swedes --"Wait, we're not Socialists!").

Never, except on the very far Left, is it an actual Marxist regime, and, even then, rarely said in public.

Dave Begley said...

This pre-emptory piece in the NYT tells me the Left is really worried about models and the CAGW scam. People aren't stupid.

Churchy LaFemme: said...

Try to make it real, compared to what? Goddamnit.

Nobody gives us rhyme or reason
Have one doubt, they call it treason

h said...

Can't we just have one article repeated day after day with various authors that has the text, "The corona virus pandemic proves that everything I always thought is correct."

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Hey ingrate, go back to the shit-hole your family fled.

Leland said...

The NYT continues their series that the US stands apart as historically racist and thus never great. I'm not with the boring newspaper.

YoungHegelian said...

@Robert Cook,

Compared to ourselves, compared to our national aspirations, (as represented by the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution), compared to the tales we tell ourselves about ourselves, compared to what we could or should be doing.

But the Left holds those documents to be flawed, racist & imperialist in their essence.

Why should they be surprised when they produce anything else?

Sorry, RC, this is what the Left does. On the one hand, it's America as the racist hegemon & then, when they've got to reach out to the rubes, it's "Let America be America again" (Obama), quoting, of course, a poem by a black communist.

Robert Cook said...

"How exactly are we prioritizing the least vulnerable when the least vulnerable are forced to stay at home unemployed or risking unemployment for the sake of the few most vulnerable?"

I think you misunderstand the statement, even as you restate it. The most vulnerable are those "forced to stay at home unemployed or risking unemployment...." They are not the least vulnerable.

Ken B said...

Young Hegelian
Check out the link I posted on the St Louis thread. Evidence about the rate of infection you were talking about.

Dave Begley said...

I just reply on Viet's twitter feed. I told him the CAGW scam is over. Only 7 replies so he'll probably read it.

Glowing praise for his NYT piece. One reply, "I've always hated the notion of American Exceptionalism."

His Twitter profile reads, "Writer. Refugee. 1st gen college student. Affirmative action beneficiary. Pulitzer, Guggenheim, MacArthur, ACLS...."

I hope that ACLS isn't Lou Gehring's disease. I knew of a guy from Blair, Nebraska who died of it. Terrible.

Gahrie said...

It is childish and neurotic for any nation's people to passionately declare their own "greatness,"

Perhaps you could point out the successful nation where the people declared "we suck!"?

Shouting Thomas said...

Everybody’s claiming that, whatever the outcome might be, their bias will be proven to be correct and irrefutable.

Lurker21 said...

He often enjoyed reading literature about the Vietnam War, preferably those from the Vietnamese perspectives, which were rather rare at the time in comparison with the overwhelming amount of the American narratives.

That's not so surprising given how he turned out. I wonder why his parents didn't try to straighten him out.

English and Ethnic Studies major at Berkeley. His whole life has been spent peddling racial grievances.

Roughcoat said...

This is a bullshit post. Althouse is just stirring the pot. Not being helpful, or interesting.

bagoh20 said...

Some actual unmitigated examples of what is not great about America:

1) The totally biased, lazy, and incompetent press we have.
2) That half the nation is supporting a man for President who is obviously mentally impaired.
3) That a majority of the nation voted for a woman for President that was proven to be morally and honesty impaired.
4) That millions of Americans support a man for President who defends and admires dictators, and economic policies that have destroyed entire economies, and cultures, and murdered millions of people.
5) That so many Americans want to be coddled and supported, even at the cost of their liberty.

America has great goals and principles, but Americans don't all support them. The nation can only be as great as we are, and many of us are not even trying.

Lewis Wetzel said...

"Already we are seeing a racist blowback against Asians and Asian-Americans for the 'Chinese virus.'"
Bullshit.

Dave Begley said...

Viet teaches English at USC and went to a Jesuit high school in CA.

Doesn't have Lou Gehrig's disease. A regular on PBS. Liberal.

Ken B said...

Begley: “ His Twitter profile reads, "Writer. Refugee. 1st gen college student. Affirmative action beneficiary. Pulitzer, Guggenheim, MacArthur, ACLS...." I hope that ACLS isn't Lou Gehring's disease. I knew of a guy from Blair, Nebraska who died of it. Terrible.”

It isn’t, and of course you knew that. My second wife died of it. Classy of you to so subtly wish that on a political opponent. Angling for the Philip Gourevitch prize? You win.

Robert Cook said...

"2) That half the nation is supporting a man for President who is obviously mentally impaired."

Hahaha! Good one! Both halves of the nation support a man for President who is obviously mentally impaired.

narciso said...

how about something from d'nesh D'Souza, who has actually spoken truth to power, and suffered for it, or dr. zuhdi jasser, an Syrian immigrant and former navy doctor,

what of mayor bane and his health protocols redolent of 14th century genoa,

bagoh20 said...

"Vulnerable" is a very flexible word, which is useful when you want to make your own truth.

mezzrow said...

Feeding the base what they want to hear.

Insufficient self awareness to imagine the impact should the meme break out among boomer rubes like old mezz = disbelief in November. It'll be racism that reelects Trump too, they'll say.

Nailed on.

MadisonMan said...

But I did go into a Safeway yesterday

The times I've been to Sentry (Metcalfe's, Hilldale) have been pleasant. I miss getting deli meats sliced while I wait though. I've yet to see a shortage of anything.

Lurker21 said...

There's a legitimate case to be made for national pride, especially in a country that is at once very diverse and fragmented and required to play a major role in the world. Denmark can just be Denmark and Latvia can just be Latvia because they know who they are and no special demands are put upon them to be anything more than a minor player on the world stage.

Insecurity may be the flip side of national pride and self-assertion, but maybe it's more like the price of aspiring to be something more than just contented with modest achievements and a modest role. We aren't going to be Denmark or Latvia, so we have to put up with wanting to be something more and fearing that we are less than that. It's the same through history with Britain, France, Germany, Russia, China ...

Robert Cook said...

"3) That a majority of the nation voted for a woman for President that was proven to be morally and honesty impaired."

And a minority voted for a man for President who is morally and honesty impaired.

"4) That millions of Americans support a man for President who defends and admires dictators, and economic policies that have destroyed entire economies, and cultures, and murdered millions of people."

Wait, I'm puzzled. Who in the race for President does this not describe?

RK said...

Forget American national pride, what really ticks me off are the Minnesotans who crow about "Minnesota Nice". What bullshit!!!

Lurker21 said...

American Council of Learned Societies. They gave him a fellowship.

Either that or he is certified to give Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support.

Dave Begley said...

On Twitter, I invited Professor Viet to visit the Althouse blog and the comments.

Nothing like the adversary system. No fawning praise here!

Shouting Thomas said...

Jesus Christ, Cook, will please stop prattling about morality as if you had an inkling what it might entail?

You’re a fucking commie.

RK said...

I bet the author believed the hopeful rumors that the Wuhan Flu was going to kill off all the old white people, and now he's just pissed that it didn't happen.

Michael K said...

Cook is all in on the hate America stuff.

The vast majority of Vietnamese refugees were from south Vietnam and settled in Orange County CA where I knew a lot of them,

I remember we had a guy apply to the medical association one time, about 1978, whose background check revealed he had been convicted of kidnapping. He was an orthopod but this was weird even for them. We asked him about it. He was in Vietnam as a young medical officer and ended up marrying a Vietnamese girl. He brought her back to the US but when the NVA took over and won the war, he learned she was a communist and an NVA activist. He hired a couple of south Vietnamese guys to kidnap her and take her to Thailand and drop her off on the border.

We accepted him in the medical association, This writer sounds like her brother.

Birkel said...

How are all the Nguyens who stayed home doing compared to all those who came to America.
Rinse and repeat for every American subgroup.

This guy is an idiot trying to answer poorly reasoned questions.

Bay Area Guy said...

@Cook,

If your hypothesis is correct, then 130 Million American voters are wacky, with the possible exception of Robert Cook!

Make distinctions, my friend. You can do it.....

Big Mike said...

You know, Cookie, President Trump has been doing everything in the federal government's power to overcome the ineptitude of de Blasio and Cuomo to keep a worthless turd like you alive. You might demonstrate that you are worthy of membership in h. sapiens by showing a little gratitude.

Big Mike said...

Viet Thanh Nguyen is welcome to emigrate to any country he thinks is greater than the US of A.

And he can take Cookie and ARM with him.

Shouting Thomas said...

Cook is a rotten, immoral, half mad advocate of communism.

Cook pontificating about morality is like Stalin sermonizing about loving your enemy.

Temujin said...

"We"? Who is the we in the "...then we are doomed."?

We are not New York. We will be just fine. New York has been feeling the effects of the virus since 2016. Except now there is death and, if this is possible, even more gloom.

Not where I live. And not where I'll be doing my work again come May or June.

Dave Begley said...

I had never heard of ACLS before today. I see where Lou Gehrig's disease is just referred to as ALS today. I thought it was ALCS.

I meant no ill will towards Professor Viet. ALS is terrible.

I'm not up on all these fancy academic awards. I made a mistake about an acronym.

Viet is obviously an educated and smart guy as he went to a Jesuit high school. He's just very liberal and all bought in on intersectionality. Wrong headed. CAGW is a total scam and its now over.

Birkel said...

MayBee,
What you wrote is false. I said Ken B was either
1) waiting for Althouse to post, constantly refreshing so he could comment first, or
2) was Meade

Nobody accused Meade of anything. That is false.

In fact, if Meade were Ken B that would be the charitable interpretation. The other explanation makes Ken B look awful.

Dave Begley said...

I really made a stupid mistake above. Per a standard rule of statutory construction, if the list includes Pulitzer, Guggenheim, MacArthur and ACLS then ACLS is some kind of prize; not a disease.

I at least learned that at Creighton Law.

mikee said...

American exceptionalism is largely misunderstood. It doesn't mean the US is the greatest nation on earth. It means the US is different than everyone else. The basis of our government is the consent of the governed, who have inalienable rights protected against infringement by limitations on the government. Or so it used to be.

I suggest there is a better chance in the US for individual rights to make a bigger return to prominence than collectivist authoritarianism following this event, especially considering the very problematic role played by the communist government of China in starting this worldwide pandemic.

Kai Akker said...


"I've always hated."

Dave Begley, that quote you cited could have stopped here, and it would have been even more accurate.

Lewis Wetzel said...

People usually don't go to commies for advice on moral matters. This is because of all the innocent people they have murdered.
In Stalin's Russia, for example, they would imprison women in one camp, separated from children in another camp by a wire fence, so that mothers were forced to watch their children starve to death.

We were always looking under our feet for something to eat. We ate grasses, roots, licked pebbles. We really wanted to give the cat some sort of treat, but we didn’t have anything, so we’d feed it our spit after dinner—and it would eat it! It would! I remember how another time, my mother tried to pass me a piece of candy. “Anya, take this candy!” she’d called to me through the wire. The guards chased her away…she fell down…They grabbed her by her long black hair and dragged her through the dirt. I was so frightened, I didn’t have the slightest idea of what candy was. None of the children knew what candy was.


Svetlana Alexievich,_Secondhand Time: The Last of the Soviets_

Fernandistein said...

I sure hope nobody looks at, or speaks harshly to, this so-called Viet Thanh Nguyen, because then he'd get his name in the paper again.

RichardJohnson said...

Viet Thanh Nguyen's parents fled Commie North Vietnam for South Vietnam in 1954, and once again fled the North Vietnamese commies in 1975. I would suggest that Viet Thanh Nguyen try living under the regime that his parents fled TWICE, criticize the Vietnamese government, and compare how that compares to criticizing the government in the US.He might also compare how multi-racial children are treated in Vietnam compared to the United States. Then tell us how living in the US is just as bad as living under the Commie regime in Vietnam.

Ray - SoCal said...

Especially Black Ones:
>compare how multi-racial children are treated in Vietnam compared to the United States.

Michael K said...

ACLS is some kind of prize; not a disease.

One meaning of ACLS is Advanced Cardiac Life Support, which requires recertification every two or three years. I kept mine up, after I retired, for years but haven't since they separated BCLS, the Basic Cardiac Life Support, from ACLS. It was just to make some more money as BCLS is only the ABC stage of ACLS.

ACLS is pretty interesting as the drug protocols change from year to year,

Lewis Wetzel said...

The story from _SecondHand Time_ could only come from a commie paradise. The NKVD had a quota of the wrong-thinking to round up every month. The victims were pretty random. The men were housed in one camp, the women in another, and any children a couple might have had were placed in an orphans camp, so they could be raised by the state, unpolluted by the influence of their mothers.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

“If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and man.”

― Mark Twain

robother said...

If Viet Nguyen really cared, he wouldn't be publishing these screeds in the NYT, preaching to the irredeemable racists of the USA. He would be back in Asia, spreading the word about what an evil, racist place the USA is, dissuading Asians from immigrating to this racist hellhole. Same with the other minority SJWs. The only noble thing for them to do is dedicate their lives to warning Africans, Muslims, Latinx populations to stay away from the USA at all costs. Perhaps we could create a new version of the Peace Corps (the No Justice No Peace Corps?) to draft and send all these angry SJW to places where they could some good.

Tomcc said...

I read the excerpted passage then saw the name of the author and thought "it sounds like he was educated in California".
What do I win?

Jupiter said...

Shouting Thomas said...
"Cook is a rotten, immoral, half mad advocate of communism."

Actually, I have never seen Cookie advocate anything. Cookie's approach is to criticize, not to praise. In this manner, he manages to never have to defend anything. Which makes sense, because according to Cookie, everything that has ever happened was a reprehensible outrage. It does seem like his critique is mostly from a Marxist perspective, but try to find him advocating Communism. I haven't seen it.

Jupiter said...

Wow. Train driver videos. Who knew?

Not Sure said...

Before looking this guy up I assumed he was one of those high-school SJWs based on his prose style.

Truly depressing that a hotshot English prof at a semi-legit university like Nguyen would proudly publish something so utterly jejune.

hombre said...

Each day I have to tamp down my astonishment that adults read this drivel from the NYT. The infantilism and hypocrisy of the leftmediaswine is a given, but it saddens me that there is a market for this junk.

So our handling of the CCP Virus defines our greatness or lack thereof? Truly, it boggles the mind! And somehow this is also about exploiting “the poor, the migratory, the black and the brown?”

Somehow it always gets back to identity politics and cultural Marxism with these NYT pinheads.

I'm Not Sure said...

It's probably a good thing America sucks so badly. Can you even imagine how many more people would be trying to get here from all around the world if this was a nice place to live?

Owen said...

David Begley @ 11:27: "...the Left is really worried about models and the CAGW scam..." I hope you're right.

As for this op-ed writer, from your and others' posts it seems his education is in English and Grievance Hustling, I mean Ethnic Studies, so he is perfectly suited to write bilge like that discussed here. At least, most of it falls within his scholarly remit of whinging and recycling Marxist tropes. But where does he get the skill to talk about climate change?

This is what riles me just a bit about these lectures from my betters. They couldn't explain atmospheric physics in any degree. Hadley cells? Adiabatic lapse rate? Albedo? The Stefan-Boltzmann law? Navier-Stokes?

Need we go on? How about explaining how a cherrypicked sample of Siberian yew tree cores gives a perfect and precise record of temperature across the entire planet 1000 years ago? And why the predicted melting of the Antarctic ice cap has not only not begun, its mass is increasing?

Long story short, he is speaking out the wrong end.

I Callahan said...

Both halves of the nation support a man for President who is obviously mentally impaired.

This is so typical of you, RC. Drop a witticism in the middle of a thread that you know the other Commies in your hive would laugh at.

Doesn't share RC's philosophy <> "Mentally Impaired".

Thus endeth the lesson.

wholelottasplainin' said...

Viet's anti-American attitudes are highly ironic, given that the Vietnamese today openly like and admire Americans. Every tourist who goes over there speaks very highly of their friendliness and hospitality, most strongly in the South, of course, but overall country-wide.

Otherwise, why would Vietnam be welcoming our aircraft carriers into the port at Da Nang?

Kai Akker said...

Despite that guy's misguided thesis, The Times has a great idea there.

I would offer this contribution -- One idea that won't survive the coronavirus is leftwing hatred of all things American. And this is not just my opinion but an actual fact. Well, traces will survive, of course, but a large antiseptic wipe from outer space is scheduled to arrive on Nov. 3, according to astronomers, and its chief effect will be to eliminate lefty lunacy as a viable part of American politics.

n.n said...

He means progressivism, or monotonic change, with a liberal (i.e. divergent) order, including retributive change (e.g. Hutu vs Tutsi, Mugabe, post-apartheid South Africans lynching blacks), redistributive change (i.e. single, central, dictated), social justice (relativistic justice, or injustice), diversity (e.g. racism, sexism, genderism), ethics or relativistic ("Pro-Choice") religion, and planned populations (e.g. selective-child, cannibalized-child) with a politically congruent twist.

Ralph L said...

The parents of the biggest leftie student (later Rhodes scholar) at my alma mater had fled Hungary in 1956. Perhaps they were Trotskyites--I believe they both worked at Voice of America. Last I heard, she was a college president.

I Callahan said...

In this manner, he manages to never have to defend anything. Which makes sense, because according to Cookie, everything that has ever happened was a reprehensible outrage

That's the typical pattern for just about all lefties, in all honesty.

Tomcc said...

He's doing a swell job of distinguishing himself from all those grateful second gens. Tenure track?

n.n said...

The SARS-CoV-2 or Wuhan virus, that is the source of Covid-19 disease, spread through liberal globalist and immigration policies without responsibility, exacerbated by a social contagion and deception that forced mismanagement of resources.

Not Sure said...

Dear Newly Arrived "Not Sure":

Would you mind adding a "2" or something to your name to avoid confusion?

TIA

JPS said...

Not Sure 12:48:

"Truly depressing that a hotshot English prof at a semi-legit university like Nguyen would proudly publish something so utterly jejune."

That's what I was thinking! It's at least as hackneyed as the classic Hollywood narrative he lampoons.

n.n said...

Viet Thanh Nguyen in "The Ideas That Won’t Survive the Coronavirus/Covid-19 is killing off the myth that we are the greatest country on earth" (NYT).

So, NYT is a first-order forcing of the social contagion. Americans are prudent and bold, and their success will follow. We need to lose our Pro-Choice, selective, opportunistic religion, and the mortal gods and goddesses that expect our submission.

robother said...

Bob Dylan captures the demonic energy of these types:

I pity the poor immigrant
Who wishes he would've stayed home
Who uses all his power to do evil
But in the end is always left so alone
That man whom with his fingers cheats
And who lies with every breath
Who passionately hates his life
And likewise, fears his death

I'm Not Sure said...

"Dear Newly Arrived "Not Sure":

Would you mind adding a "2" or something to your name to avoid confusion?"


Done. I'm sorry- no offense intended. I didn't know the name was taken already. Kind of surprised the forum software allows duplicate ids.

Bilwick said...

So he's not going to be happy until the US is transformed into another third-world-type, statist sh-thole?

Michael K said...

Can you even imagine how many more people would be trying to get here from all around the world if this was a nice place to live?

Yes. Somebody should hire this guy to write for Voice of America, Central America edition.

I used to interview applicants for UC, Irvine medical school. One was a Vietnamese girl who was a grad student in molecular biology. She told me of how her father had lifted her from her bed at age 9, taken her to a canoe which then paddled offshore out of sight. They then met a fishing boat that took them to a refugee camp in the Philippines where they spent two years. They were luckier than 500,000 other refugees that died at sea, many at the hands of pirates.

I have a feeling this NYT writer got out much more easily.

Ken B said...

Kai Akker 12:17

Thank you.

RMc said...

Jesus Christ, Cook, will please stop prattling about morality as if you had an inkling what it might entail?

For the Cookies of the world, America will never be good enough. (Indeed, nothing will ever be good enough, except for their own unquestioned brilliance.)

Kevin said...

If this was a classic Hollywood narrative, the exceptionally American superhero, reluctant and wavering in the first act, would make the right choice at this turning point. The evil Covid-19 would be conquered, and order would be restored to a society that would look just as it did before the villain emerged.

So the greatest society would never learn from beating a foe, making itself stronger in the process?

It wouldn't even change in ways that help it prevent the next attack, or know it was coming sooner than the last time?

Uh, no.

Ficta said...

"Brown" Ugh. I hate this attempt to create more racism by creating more races. It used to be that when the mind controlling aliens made Kirk kiss Uhura it was American TV's first interracial kiss; but by today's standards, Lucy and Ricky were a "mixed race" couple. This is progress? Screw that nonsense. Hell, I get pretty damn brown if I stay out in the sun. With the possible exception of actual albinos, every body's a little bit brown. We need fewer races, not more.

RichardJohnson said...

Michael K
I remember we had a guy apply to the medical association one time, about 1978, whose background check revealed he had been convicted of kidnapping. He was an orthopod but this was weird even for them. We asked him about it. He was in Vietnam as a young medical officer and ended up marrying a Vietnamese girl. He brought her back to the US but when the NVA took over and won the war, he learned she was a communist and an NVA activist. He hired a couple of south Vietnamese guys to kidnap her and take her to Thailand and drop her off on the border.

Coincidentally, Viet Thanh Nguyen's book, The Sympathizer, deals with a Commie who infiltrated a refugee group.

It is April 1975, and Saigon is in chaos. At his villa, a general of the South Vietnamese army is drinking whiskey and, with the help of his trusted captain, drawing up a list of those who will be given passage aboard the last flights out of the country. The general and his compatriots start a new life in Los Angeles, unaware that one among their number, the captain, is secretly observing and reporting on the group to a higher-up in the Viet Cong.

It would be interesting if he wrote a novel about the infiltrator you discussed- who got kidnapped and dropped off inside the Vietnamese border.

Skeptical Voter said...

Well I think the gentleman is worried about the world ending in 12 years--he's caught the AOC Climate Virus. and as far as the US is concerned he and his family have only been around here for 45 years or so. Not to say that he's "short" but the first in my family (leaving aside the possibility that I've got more Cherokee blood than Senator Warren) arrived in Virginia in 1610.

There have been a lot of crises that members of my family have seen--they fought in the Revolutionary War; they fought on both sides in the Civil War (now both of those wars are ways ro remake a society); they came out with Fremont and fought in the Bear Flag War to bring California into the United States [I think they missed the Mexican War in 1847] they guided people along the Oregon Trail and pioneered a cutoff on the trail to California; they drove some of the first herds up the Chisholm Trail; I lost a potential uncle to the Spanish flu in 1918; they went through the Great Depression,and fought in WW II.

Somehow I worry less than Mr. Viet about the US's ability to weather a crisis. But if he wants to run around like a brainless ninny listening to AOC's gloom and doom, why heck he's just background noise. The rest of us will get on with things.

Caligula said...

"Another pre-written article. The Times has a million of them."

I dunno about "pre-written." But I don't see why these couldn't be written by software: just type in "corvid-19", "privilege" and about how many words you want and, here's your article!

And, no, that's not "AI" software, as such software need not simulate any actual human thought process to produce outputs that requires no thinking.

ALP said...

JEEBUS where to begin? The US is a sprawling, massive system that contains many many complex urban subsystems. We couldn't HOUSE all citizens before this - and humans have been building shelter for centuries. Urban systems are reactive - did you expect anything else?

I am tired of people opining that we didn't have ready, quick, organized response before this given what the US is. For fuck's sake even a small team in white collar office has conflicts. The logistics are complex - why do so many expect a simple, swift solution/reaction to things like this?

Howard said...

You Cucks are pathetic weak-as sob-sisters. If you truly thought America is great, you wouldn't get apoplexy from criticisms. Therefore, you deplorables actually hate real American exceptionalism. No wonder you whoreship Donald Gump.

Jon Ericson said...

Cranky people are funny.

Iman said...

Get bent, howee.

One can't trust what's written in the NYT. But one can trust the NYT to be the NYT.

Ken B said...

Howard, I won’t go along with deplorables but you make a serious point. The panicked denialists fretting that a few weeks stagnation will shatter the American economy beyond repair have, implicitly, a low opinion of American enterprise and ingenuity, free markets, and Donald Trump's leadership.

Roughcoat said...

Otherwise, why would Vietnam be welcoming our aircraft carriers into the port at Da Nang?

Otherwise ... because the Viets and the Han (Chinese) have been enemies since the beginning of recorded history. Even when they were allies hey were enemies. They have always hated each other. Their hatred for each other is perfect. Believe you me, we want the Viets on our side in this struggle with China. Have you heard that the Viets are very good fighters? I wouldn't mind at all having a Viet in my foxhole covering 180 degrees of perimeter. Of course the Viets now want us on our side. Interesting that the symbolism of a U.S. aircraft carrier visiting a Viet port went uncommented on, unnoticed, by our crackerjack media. Interesting, but not surprising. You want to know which way the wind is blowing, what the weather report is? East Wind, Rain. Or something a lot like it.

Roughcoat said...

Correction: "The Viets now want us on THEIR side."

Roughcoat said...

With the possible exception of actual albinos, every body's a little bit brown.

Not me. When I'm out in the sun I turn from white to red. Nothing in between.

That said: I am mixed race: half Irish, half German.

lb said...

"panicked denialists" it's interesting to watch projection manifest in real time over several weeks.

Jon Ericson said...

I guess a few people liked the Eddie Haskell character.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Isn't claiming to be a "brown" person just a way of positioning yourself as not one of those Black people?
As in "Blacks are a criminal under class because the White people oppressed them, but I am neither a member of a criminal under class nor an oppressor! I am a "brown" person!

Known Unknown said...

Let it be known a yellow man does not believe the U.S. has not exploited yellow people.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Commies gonna commie.

Francisco D said...

Howard said ... You Cucks are pathetic weak-as sob-sisters. If you truly thought America is great, you wouldn't get apoplexy from criticisms. Therefore, you deplorables actually hate real American exceptionalism. No wonder you whoreship Donald Gump.

I am starting to wonder if Howard has multiple personality disorder.

Krumhorn said...

Lefties are nasty hateful little shits. It cannot be said often enough.

- Krumhorn

Phidippus said...

Sounds like he might be happier back in Vietnam.

Door's open, dude.

bagoh20 said...

Do you wonder how many people are dying from the regular flu this year? The CDC website says 24K-62K so far this season.

39 Million - 56 Million cases so far.

https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden/preliminary-in-season-estimates.htm

Krumhorn said...

Take a look at this. It will brighten your day.

- Krumhorn

robother said...

Caligula: "no, that's not "AI" software, as such software need not simulate any actual human thought process to produce outputs that requires no thinking."

Kind of like "Ken B" who simply labels anyone with a different position a "denialist"? Or ARM repeatedly posting the same four line NYT paragraph? I find it more depressing if it turns out they are actual human beings.

Larvell said...

I want to see the article about the country that wasn’t expansionist and that prioritized the poor. Probably China or Russia.

Howard said...

I'm a ♊

chickelit said...

Althouse seems to feed on the sort of bigotry regularly published in the NYT.

Is that called helping?

Narr said...

Mister Shoulda Been Left In Saigon.

Narr
We're all pink on the inside (some more than others)

Robert Cook said...

"For the Cookies of the world, America will never be good enough."

Well, no. Why should we accept just "good enough"?

Howard said...

The apex of American patriotism is holding her to the highest standards. The slavish jingoism is over-compensation for weakness and low self-esteem of dilatant Americans. Excuse makers and macho fakers.

KellyM said...

Dear Viet Thanh Nguyen:

You're not an American. You need to go back.

Howard said...

Satisfaction is the end of desire.

Josephbleau said...

All the cray supercomputers were solving 5th order differential equations for climate models, so there was no time left to do nonlinear likelihood models on covid-19 infection data.

Josephbleau said...

"Satisfaction is the end of desire."

Satisfaction is the end of desire. For about 2 hours.

Robert Cook said...

"You Cucks are pathetic weak-as sob-sisters. If you truly thought America is great, you wouldn't get apoplexy from criticisms. Therefore, you deplorables actually hate real American exceptionalism. No wonder you whoreship Donald Gump."

Howard says it in terms more inflammatory than I would, but he's right. Such emotional outbursts at suggestions that our government falls short in many areas in serving its people--we, who it purportedly represents--bespeaks an infantile mindset. Our government, as any, is a political structure of power relationships. Some have power, others don't; some benefit from that power and how it is used, many don't. It's not daddy (or mommy), not Jesus, not a "City on a Hill," but just another complex society of humans with its own virtues and faults that requires constant maintenance and repairs.

"Satisfaction is the end of desire."

Satisfaction is the end of growth, it is stagnation and apathy, and ultimately, decadence, corruption and decline.

Earnest Prole said...

Shorter version: Now that we’ve got this whole coronavirus thing going on, maybe they’ll be more receptive to my very sensible ideas about socialism, veganism, and enemas.

Robert Cook said...

"Dear Viet Thanh Nguyen:

"You're not an American. You need to go back."


Yes, he is, and he is doing exactly what Americans should: contantly examining his nation to diagnose its ills, the better to attempt to remedy them.

"The apex of American patriotism is holding her to the highest standards."

Yes.

Nichevo said...

RichardJohnson said...
Viet Thanh Nguyen's parents fled Commie North Vietnam for South Vietnam in 1954, and once again fled the North Vietnamese commies in 1975. I would suggest that Viet Thanh Nguyen try living under the regime that his parents fled TWICE


His parents must be dead. I hope his parents are dead, so they don't have to see what he has become. He has forgotten the face of his father.



Actually, I have never seen Cookie advocate anything. Cookie's approach is to criticize, not to praise. In this manner, he manages to never have to defend anything.

He's just a misanthropic crank. No contributions whatsoever to the human race.




Howard said...
You Cucks are pathetic weak-as sob-sisters. If you truly thought America is great, you wouldn't get apoplexy from criticisms. Therefore, you deplorables actually hate real American exceptionalism. No wonder you whoreship Donald Gump.

Can't criticize your wife and kids, they can all suck a golf ball through a garden hose.

Nichevo said...

"The apex of American patriotism is holding her to the highest standards."

Yes.



The apex of American patriotism, which blogging and commenting is not, is actually going out and doing stuff, not running your cockholsters. Howie at least claims to have served his country, in the classic sense. What has Cook ever done but to look down on guys like Howie?

Drago said...

Francisco: "I am starting to wonder if Howard has multiple personality disorder."

Howard is essentially a blue collar type guy who walks on egg shells constantly because his kids apparently did well in school and are part of the "elite" that Howard lauds constantly. Howard has also moved from CA to the land of Blue bloods and he is, in my opinion, very aware of his surroundings and that he doesn't exactly "fit" there.

Deep down, Howard knows he is not, and never has been, part of this "elite" group to which he is so deferential.

So he compensates for his own massive insecurities about his status by lashing out and projecting his issues onto others.

The Godfather said...

Nguyen says: "But if our society looks the same after the defeat of Covid-19, it will be a Pyrrhic victory." No, it will be just a plain old victory, and it is what virtually every decent American is hoping for. Let's get together and work that.

rcocean said...

The New York Times is owned by a Mexican and has readership which spits on America 1.0. To them, american patriotism is for losers. Its hilarious that - according to the NYT/Wapo billionaires - we can't criticize China, but we can call the USA every name in the book - with elite approval. Its like living in Bizzaro world.

Known Unknown said...

" It does seem like his critique is mostly from a Marxist perspective, but try to find him advocating Communism. I haven't seen it."

Yeah, I like Cook. I really do. I like having his voice here, but he does seem to offer a lot of criticism without solutions.

I'd have to check my own commentary to see if I do the same. I can't tell. Mostly I just write dumb faux-pithy things.

rcocean said...

Many 'muricans don't mind, They love being martyrs. That the people they've invited into the country are ungrateful, and attack their adopted home, somehow makes them happy. It just proves how super-nice and unselfish they are.

rcocean said...

I'm just glad Cook is here and gives people something to write about.

Robert Cook said...

"Actually, I have never seen Cookie advocate anything."

You're not paying attention, (not that I assume you should). I advocate for tax-payer funded National Medical Health Care system; I advocate removing all our forces from overseas; I advocate closing all our military bases in other nations, I advocate slashing our military budget by at least 75%, (as a start); I advocate shutting down virtually all of our intelligence agencies and strictly constraining the functions of what remains; I advocate holding powerful people in government and corporate boardrooms to account for their corruption and crimes; I advocate stricter regulations on corporations, the banks, Wall Street (and that they be enforced); etc., etc.

Robert Cook said...

"What has Cook ever done but to look down on guys like Howie?"

What does that mean, "guys like Howie," and how do you know who I look down upon?

Wince said...

But if our society looks the same after the defeat of Covid-19, it will be a Pyrrhic victory.

I think these clowns are starting to realize nobody beside a doctrinaire Marxist is going to take their bullshit seriously for a long time.

Or be willing to pay for it.

JPS said...

Howard:

"The apex of American patriotism is holding her to the highest standards."

Necessary, but not sufficient. You also have to believe she can live up to them, and hope she will yet.

Holding her to the highest standards and constantly pointing out with glee, or at least satisfaction, that she falls short, is something different than patriotism.

Not suggesting you do that, and I don't believe Robert Cook does. But some lefties of my acquaintance take a real told-you-so satisfaction every blessed time they get to point out our falling short, yet again, of our ideals.

Bilwick said...

Cookie doesn't advocate anything? You definitely haven't been paying attention. Cookie loves him some statism--actually not "some" statism, but more--always more--statism. He is the perfect serf.

Rusty said...

Howard:

"The apex of American patriotism is holding her to the highest standards."
No. The apex of Americam patriotism is holding yourself to the standards set by our constitution and agreeing those constitutional guarantees belong to everyone. " Holding her" to a higher standard got us Bush and Clinton and Obama. Try living your life like you deserve to be here. Then vote for people who don't want to fuck everybody over.

Matt said...

I'm really getting f'ng tired of being lectured by all these goddamn minorities and foreigners about the shit that has occurred everywhere else on planet Earth and has been done by every f'ng group of humans to ever exist on planet Earth but is only bad when America does it.

Every day with this unoriginal, tired, whiney, pedantic handwringing horseshit. If you are not from here, if you don't like it here, if everybody treats you like shit, then maybe you don't f'ng fit in and its time for you to leave.

Get.
Out.

There's plenty of others waiting to take your place.

Who we also don't need, of course.

Not Sure said...

@I'm Not Sure,

Thanks. I love paradox.

Fernandistein said...

Colonizers are just successful migrants.

Howard said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lewis Wetzel said...

"The apex of American patriotism is holding her to the highest standards."

"The apex of loving your family is holding your family to the highest standards."


Real American said...

It's killing the myth that our government ought in charge of anything important because it's too big to function properly by humans. Health care, manufacturing, education, travel, the economy, elections - it doesn't really matter. Just about everything is too important to let government be in charge of it. It doesn't create shit except problems.

Gahrie said...

I am starting to wonder if Howard has multiple personality disorder.

Close. It's a lack of personality disorder.

Martin said...

This new series coming right after The 1619 Project--wow, they REALLY hate this country at the NYT. The only question is why they are still here in what they obviously believe to be the seat of all evil in the world.

They say they want to hold America to a high standard but that is just a lie, they want to set a standard no one can meet and then apply it to only one place... well, two places if you include Israel.

glacial erratic said...

The phrase "ungrateful bastard" comes to mind.

Josephbleau said...

Was there not a movie “inglorious bastards?”

McCackie said...

A total pathetic trying to pump themselves up as heroes.

Murat BATTAL said...

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Murat BATTAL said...

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Grafik tasarım
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Kurumsal Kimlik Tasarımı
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evden eve nakliyat
istanbul evden eve nakliyat fiyatları
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şehiriçi evden eve nakliye
antalya pedogog
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Siirt klima servisi
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roesch/voltaire said...

I wonder how many here have actually read the article. There is little mention of the events discussed here and it ends on a hopeful note of examples of how people are stepping up to solve the problem. Oh I know the easy right response is just to call him a commie, or lefty and end the debate.

Bilwick said...

"Oh I know the easy right response is just to call him a commie, or lefty and end the debate."

And of course in "Liberal" World--where denial ain't just a river in Egypt, where the laws of economics are merely suggestions, and where statism actually brings prosperity and happiness and not poverty and death--there are no commies and lefties, just misunderstood humanitarians.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger roesch/voltaire said...

I wonder how many here have actually read the article. There is little mention of the events discussed here and it ends on a hopeful note of examples of how people are stepping up to solve the problem.


What "problem"?
The author is a person priveleged far above his abilities. It takes no courage or genius to repeat cant.