Friday, August 25, 2006

Update: I'm afraid there's no getting around it, you're really going to have to read all of Matt Taibbi's "The Low Post" columns


Since my earlier post, I've now read all four outings to date in Matt Taibbi's new online-only column, "The Low Post," for (also posted on AlterNet), and all I can say is:


Not only is the guy really, really smart, and not only can he really, really write, but he still thinks of himself as a reporter, doing real reporting, not to be confused with the thumb-sucking I do here. He gets out there and observes what he's writing about.

As I was reading, I found myself wanting to pass along just about every sentence. I can't do that, obviously, but let me give you a sample. First, let me give you the links again, with the titles, which I take to be the author's own (the AlterNet posts have different titles):

• "The Mansion Family: Yuppie paranoia (and David Brooks) guarantees the Democrats are still--and forever--doomed" (posted 8/2/06)

• "Hill on Fire: Hillary Clinton copulates with the ghost of Richard Nixon" (posted 8/8/06)

• "Dead Man Coming: Don't hold your breath waiting for Joe Lieberman to go away" (posted 8/15/06)

• "Off With Their Heads: The Democrats march themselves to the gallows" (posted 8/22/06)

There's also an "archive" link, which will presumably become more valuable as the columns pile up. In addition, let me throw in a link for maybe the best single piece I've read on our Joe Lieberman: what appears to be Matt's most recent "Road Rage" column (this would be from Rolling Stone itself, right?), "Bush's Favorite Democrat."

The basic position will be familiar to DWT readers: that while, yes, there are differences between Democrats and Republicans, and those differences do matter, to an overwhelming extent the parties are dual agents of corporate control.

Now for the sample I promised. This is the end of the Hillary Clinton column:

To milk the blood of soldiers and innocent civilians for the principle of rank careerism is surely lower even than sacrificing young lives for oil or money, but the Democrats will get away with it, because American voters have always been too afraid to contemplate the reality of their monolithic system of government.

The only kind of change most dissenting voters in this country can contemplate is the rejection of an openly drooling imperialist like Joe Lieberman, whose real crime was not his war stance but his refusal to participate in the kind of craven cover-your-ass posturing the Hillarys and Joe Bidens and John Kerrys have indulged in this election season. Had Lieberman merely pretended to be antiwar once things went wrong in Baghdad, he almost certainly could have counted on the pusillanimity of the American voter to carry him to yet another Connecticut landslide.

Beltway pros like Hillary have long understood that in tough times, the vast majority of disgruntled Americans would rather find a way to convince themselves that their party agrees with them than face the fact that they never had any choice at all on a wide range of crucial issues. They're willing to be swayed by a carefully scripted display of canned anger like Hillary's outburst in the Senate because the alternatives--third-party politics, grass-roots activism, dropping out of society altogether--are too exhausting and radical to even imagine. Because getting to the root causes of things is so hard and scary, they'll settle for punishing an unpopular politician, even if it means electing his accomplice.

So they'll vote, even for a factory-produced fraud like Hillary Clinton, because voting is easy. Much easier than doing something. That's the real platform the Democrats are running on this November.

Wow! I know I said that already, but what else can I say?


At 9:52 PM, Blogger Dr. Tex Nology said...

"So they'll vote, even for a factory-produced fraud like Hillary Clinton, because voting is easy. Much easier than doing something."
Wow is right. Thanks for turning me on to Matt Taibbi's reporting.
It's depressing to believe, as I do, your statement:
"to an overwhelming extent the parties are dual agents of corporate control."
But the hope I cling to, and the reason I enjoy DWT, is that some of the grassroots politicians that you support might still be idealistic enough to able to chip away at this monolithic political system.

And you have to admit that even if ousting Lieberman doesn't change anything politically, it sure as hell felt GOOD!

At 1:01 PM, Blogger KenInNY said...

Actually, I think dumping Holy Joe was a REAL accomplishment, especially if the dumping sticks in November. But already he's been shown, and the system has been shown, that THERE ARE LIMITS! At some point the people WILL take matters into their own hands.

When you look at the array of forces aligned against Ned Lamont, you know a good fight is being fought. The fact that there's a lot of scum lining up BEHIND Lamont--because they too understand that he's outlived his usefulness--is no cause for celebration, but also no cause for shame.



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