38 thoughts on “Rallying Against Stupidity, Fear & Mush.

  1. No one really bothers to criticize TV “news” anymore…because…1) They are frankly irrelevant, and 2) They suck. They have shaped their own audience by their own inanity and craptaculation. Why WOULD anyone watch? To see where the latest car accident happened?

    The Strib is fast along the same path. You’ll know it’s really over for them when no one bothers to criticize them. They’re close now.

    1. PM says:

      Rob: i agree with you, especially about TV news. there simply is no content, and to discover the lack of content you are forced to listen to hours of pablum. It isn’t even entertaining!

      I really used to like the Strib. I used to think that they were one of the better papers left standing I grew up in St. Louis, and fondly remember the Post Dispatch in its glory days–now there is literally nothing to it. And the Strib seems to be going down the same path–shrinking inexorably year by year. At least it manages to carry a number of the most important articles from the NYT. And the comics are still pretty good….

      1. Have any of you watched local morning TV lately? I tuned in this morning for some weather info on this wind … craptaculation … and they had to have run 35-40 minutes of ad clutter.

  2. Dennis Lang says:

    Boy, “Country Joe and the Fish”. And, remember the “Moby Grape”, “Procol Harem”, “Jethro Tull”, hell, “Donovan”? I had them all on vinyl. Ah, memories…. Nice article–as always. Sad, depressing really, irrevocably lost our expectations for candor, enlightenment, God forbid stimulation in local journalism, but true. Looking forward to this weekends’ DC dispatches from the front: Lambert, The Professor, and of course, Ellen M..

    1. PM says:

      Someday i am planning on turning all of my old vinyl into MP-3’s……(probably about the same time Austin actually cleans out the attic)

  3. Mike Kennedy says:

    This latest rant is oddly restrained. I’m a little disappointed.

    The coming election got you down?

    I sure hope to see something soon labeling all conservatives as, Fox-loving, women hating, homophobic, racist, white, rich, Islamophobic, polluting, corrupt and generally ignorant.

    Cmon, Brian, get your game on.

    1. That’s a good list there, Mike. But judging by the goombas ‘rasslin and roughin’ up lone gals carry signs in Kentucky I’d challenge the “rich” part. Those boys look about to walk away from the meth camp if their big gummint disability checks dry up.

  4. I gave up on TV, don’t own one since circa 2002; I’ve never bothered with the daily papers…ever (not that I’m proud of that, because I was tuned out raising kids and by the time I got my life back both papers sucked).

    Which leads me to why, now that I’m tuned in, and the time investment to be even vaguely tuned in is costly…I love the internet for getting the news and the best punditry (feel free to pat your back for me).

    What I cannot understand is why does anyone bother with TV news or daily papers…I would dare people to track the moments of value they derive from either one…I’d be stunned if it was more than 5% of the time spent.

    1. PM says:

      I actually like reading something in my hands. It seems to me as if there is more choice in what i choose to look at, and i find that when, for example, i read an actual NYT and also go on the website, I get more out of the physical paper–more retention, etc. What i do love about the website is the ability to copy a fascinating article to a folder where i am organizing things on a topic/subject that interests me. Frequently I find myself reading a paper, then going to the website to find the article i read, and then copying it to a folder. (used to be i would cut out the article, and keep it in a stack, before throwing it out several years later….)

  5. I’m sure the Star Tribune is keeping its powder dry ahead of taking on the MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE THAT MINNESOTA WILL FACE IN THE COMING MONTHS…a new stadium for the Vikings. This is going to be heavy lifting in light of the facts, which are:

    1. The public is overwhelmingly opposed to it.

    2. The Vikings suck.

    3. Minnesota is flat broke.

    4. There won’t be a season next year anyway.

    5. Corporate welfare has been done to death.

    1. Oh yeah. Team Strib will take a bold stand on that baby. Since their parking lots are worth more than the paper itself, they’ll happily sell and relocate to … exurban Grant, rumor has it.

    1. Ellen: Those guys were protecting their man, and therefore all of us, from job-killing, tax-crazed, anti-Constitution elitists. What don’t you understand?

      Can you believe the part about the one moron throwing the woman to the ground while wearing a “Don’t Tread on Me” button?

      Prediction: The head stomper will be a Joe the Plumber hero within hours.,

      1. Jim Leinfelder says:

        If he makes bail. Judges tend to frown on large, doughy cowards stomping on the necks and heads of women helplessly face down on concrete, one hopes.

      2. Boo hoo.

        Where”s your stand on armed thugs outside the polling place?

        Bertram Jr and little Trip are looking forward to being “observant” during their voting next week in the exurban conclave.

  6. I just looked it up – my last march on Washington was 39 1/2 years ago. Same as you, Brian?

    I guess it’s just about time for another one. Sort of like the line from Young Frankenstein: “A riot is an ugly sink, unt, I think that it is just about time dat ve had vone!”

    For everyone who thinks American politics is just about as bad as it’s ever been, ask a boomer what it was like in the ’60s, assuming you can find one of us who isn’t suffering from terminal amnesia on the subject.

    (Hint, although it’s entirely irrelevant: Boomers who complain about the work ethic of the current “worst generation yet” are either the biggest hypocrites in history or are in serious need of an MRI.)

    1. Yeah, Dick Nixon, the “peace with honor” candidate revving up the war to end it was damned loony stuff. But as Bill Clinton and others have been pointing out, Nixon circa 1970 would be a marginalized figure in today’s Republican party. Although … Dick had a real knack for moulting into whatever life form he needed to be to win.

      1. Mike Kennedy says:



        He was one of the two worst liberal presidents of the modern era — the other one, of course, being Carter. And we had these two boobs back to back — with hapless Ford thrown in for an intermission break.

  7. Mike Kennedy says:

    Clinton should talk. Clinton II (signing welfare reform and NAFTA) would be cast into political oblivion by the far left of the Democratic Party.

    Of course, being no political idiot, he would triangulate, as he so expertly did to appeal to the 80 percent of the American public who is not on the far left.

  8. Mike Kennedy says:

    Well, study the record. Federal spending grew faster under Nixon than Johnson, exceeding defense spending. He approved massive increases in Great Society programs, expanded federal regulations 121 percent to Johnson’s 19 percent (pages of the Federal Register), inceased Affirmative Action racial quotas and pronounced himself a believer in Keynesian economics, attempting to manipulate the economy with wage and price freezes.

    Uh, I’m out of mattresses at the moment. My granddaughter peed in our bed last night (the power was out and she was afraid).

  9. John Reinan says:

    Nixon signed the EPA into law. Same with OSHA. He also imposed wage and price controls.

    Certainly not the actions of a dyed-in-the-wool conservative.

    1. PM says:

      Our definitions of what a conservative is and isn’t have changed over time. Currently, our operative definition in politics was really outlined by Goldwater, who was pretty much a marginal figure (despite winning the republican nomination, perhaps because of his stunning defeat at the hands of johnson) when Nixon was President.

      Nixonian conservatism consisted of law and order, realism and strength in foreign policy, and family values (without the religious overtones–he was a Quaker, after all–basically a rejection of sex and drugs and rock and roll and the 60’s).

      Generally, conservatism has been defined as resistant to change–look to the past for inspiration, etc. Tradition, as Burke would have (and did) put it. The idea of a radical ideology (such as libertarianism) being a part of conservatism would have been completely laughable 50 or more years ago. we have changed what we think of as conservatism…and will change it yet again.

  10. Mike Kennedy says:

    You’re right. Seems the definitions of both conservatism and liberalism have both changed greatly over the years.

    1. PM says:

      True–i didn’t mean to leave liberalism out of it. After all, “classical liberalism” (sort of a J.S.Mill/david hume mishmash)is pretty close to what we would now call conservatism.

      And one of the ways that conservative and liberal change is thru the attempts of opponents to define the terms in negative ways–sometimes that sticks.

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