"I have long written about tie color!"


Our highest elites at work:
Because it deserves to live forever, we're going to give you David Leonhardt's statement to Rachel again. Here's what the Timesman actually said on Monday night's Maddow Show:
LEONHARDT (1/7/19): And, look, I'm not the biggest fan of George W. Bush's presidency, but George W. Bush remained a competent president to the end and he had none of the ethical issues that Trump does. And if you think about what Bush did in his last two years, he managed the disaster in Iraq responsibly, and he managed the financial crisis extremely responsibly.

I'm not saying he doesn't deserve blame for what happened before. But imagine Donald Trump trying to manage a natural disaster or a war or a financial crisis. I find it frightening and I worry we would look back and say, "How did we not get rid of him beforehand?"
Bush remained competent to the end! After all, he managed the disaster in Iraq responsibly—the disaster he himself caused!

Leonhardt said it, and Rachel just smiled. So it goes on the highest platforms maintained by our fallen elites.

Leonhardt is typically sold as one of the brightest players at the New York Times. What else gets said at the New York Times? This very morning, on page A2, Vanessa Friedman says this:
"I have long written about tie color, especially during debates..."
She has long written about tie color! Out of this manifest inanity, the possibility of Trump was born.

Just for the record, Friedman has been the fashion director and chief fashion critic for the New York Times since March 2014. Sadly, she "received her undergraduate degree from Princeton," her company bio reports.

In today's essay, Friedman is defending her recent articles about Nancy Pelosi's clothes. On line, her fiery piece appears beneath these pugnacious, street-fightin' headlines:
Why Covering Nancy Pelosi’s Hot Pink Dress Isn’t Sexist
Our chief fashion critic says not to cover the speaker’s style choices would be irresponsible.
You see, Friedman has been criticized for frisking Pelosi's clothes. This morning, her act of self-defense starts off like this:
FRIEDMAN (1/11/19): Last month, when Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator Chuck Schumer, the Democratic leader, first met with President Trump about funding for a border wall, I wrote an article about the burnt orange MaxMara coat Ms. Pelosi wore when she exited the White House, which had set social media aflame.

The story reached a huge audience, but not everyone was happy. One irritated reader tweeted, “Would a man’s suit get this much ink?”

Given that I have written about President Trump’s suits, Jeb Bush’s shirtsleeves and Marco Rubio’s shoes, my answer is yes.
As she continues, Friedman defends herself against charges of sexism by noting the fact that she also wastes everyone's time with endless, brain-damaged ruminations about male politicians' clothes. That brings us to her defining claim:

"I have long written about tie color." Also, about various male politicians' shirtsleeves, suits and shoes!

She's written about tie color for years! According to that pair of headlines, it would be "irresponsible" not to.

In fairness to Friedman, let's start with a comment about the readers who charged her with sexism. Simply put, it isn't true that writers like Friedman restrict themselves to the wardrobe selections of our female pols.

No one's wardrobe ever got frisked more extensively than that of Candidate Gore. His boots, his suits, his polo shirts; the height at which he hemmed his pants; the fact that one of his suits was "earth toned;" the number of buttons on his suit jackets; the obvious fact that three-button suits constituted a sick approach to female voters—all these ridiculous claims, and more, were advanced by the criminal minds who sent George W. Bush to the White House, where he performed so well.

How sick are these prehuman stars, who run on the fuel of Professor Harari's gossip and fiction? Below, you see a Washington Post Pulitzer winner after Gore and Bradley staged their first Democratic debate in October 1999.

The candidates focused on health care. Children are dead all over the world because our nation's highest elites function in this puzzling way:
MCGRORY (10/31/99): Vice President Albert Gore came to his fateful encounter with newly menacing challenger Bill Bradley carrying heavy baggage. He was wearing an outfit that added to his problems when he stepped onstage at Dartmouth College: a brown suit, a gunmetal blue shirt, a red tie—and black boots.

Was it part of his reinvention strategy? Perhaps it was meant to be a ground-leveling statement—"I am not a well-dressed man." It is hard to imagine that he thought to ingratiate himself with the nation's earliest primary voters by trying to look like someone seeking employment at a country music radio station. Maybe it was the first step in shedding his Prince Albert image.
The debate had focused on health care, including the nation's sick children. The slugs who pose as the nation's journalists could only respond like that.

(How had they behaved in the press room at Dartmouth? Thanks in part to a phone call from Hanover immediately after the debate, we were able to tell you! To acquaint yourselves with the soul of the beast, you can just click here.)

Readers swore that writers like Friedman only discuss the clothing of female pols. That's because they themselves are pre-rational beings. They work live and direct from tribal narrative (Harari's "fictions"), not from observation of real life as actually lived here on Earth.

Meanwhile, our meritocratic elites live and die with their ultimate piffle. Bush was competent to the end! Meanwhile, the Friedmans will be writing like this until the advent of Mister Trump's War, the war they created in thirty years of utter drivel and meritocratic failure.

This is who our elites actually are. When our new year starts at this site, we'll be examining this phenomenon from a wide array of angles.

"I have long written about tie color!" Friedman's statement should go on the tombstone, the one our disordered president is fashioning for our failed western world.

Also this: Was it the best sex you ever had?

That was multimillionaire Diane Sawyer, asking Marla Maples, long ago, about getting it on with The Donald.

This is who and what they are. This is what they care about. We leave you today with the coming year's question:

Are they "rational animals?" Or is that Aristotle's error, committed long ago?


  1. "I wrote an article about the burnt orange MaxMara coat Ms. Pelosi wore [...] but not everyone was happy"

    Of course they aren't happy. In the paper filled with the phrase "ORANGE MAN BAD" endlessly repeated on every page, they run into "orange MaxMara coat Ms. Pelosi wore" and they get confused, poor things...

    1. "The buck stops with everybody" - Donny J. Chickenshit, Acting President of the US

      "I have been pleasantly surprised by his performance as Prexy…" - morally bankrupt lying sack of shit treasonous bastard

  2. " until the advent of Mister Trump's War"

    I'm sorry you're suffering so much from Mister Trump's Peace, dear Bob. As time goes by, your exploding head condition ain't getting any better, eh?

  3. “Friedman has been the fashion director and chief fashion critic for the New York Times since March 2014.”

    Therefore, it should surprise no one that “She's written about tie color for years!”

    Or, to put it another way, what does Somerby expect she would write about?

    1. I'm OK with Friedman writing columns about politicians' fashions. I'm not OK with presenting those columns as if they were serious poltical commentary.

  4. “Out of this manifest inanity, the possibility of Trump was born.”

    Interesting that, in Somerby’s world, it is always the fashion pages that lead to these bad results. Funny how it’s never the vast amount of sports coverage.

    1. I would call that sexist given that both fashion and sports tend to be gendered activities irrespective of exceptions in both domains.

  5. “That was multimillionaire Diane Sawyer, asking Marla Maples, long ago, about getting it on with The Donald.”

    To be fair, The Donald was keenly interested in her answer.

  6. So the corporate-owned media's only real job is to distract the populace away from the Right-wing smash and grab of anything that isn't locked down.
    I'm sure the time travelers from the 1980s appreciate the insight.

  7. Maybe media write about clothing because they don't know how to cover actual serious issues. E.g., in their response to Trump, Schumer and Pelosi proposed an alternative to wall involving various high-tech gizmos. I have seen no articles analyzing the effectiveness of their approach or even the exact details. Instead I've seen analysis of how good an impression they made.

    1. fuck you Comrade. First let's see the detailed plan for the "wall" or "barrier" or is it "slat" today. You racist prick.

    2. mm - glad to see you agree with me about the media's poor performance. Yes, the media should also do a better job of analyzing Trump's plan for the wall.

    3. he has no fucking plan, you dumb fuck

    4. mm - this article is critical of the wall, but it includes some of his plans. https://www.texasobserver.org/map-trump-border-wall-locations-texas/

    5. bwahahaha!! hey, maybe Donny J. Chickenshit, fucking moron in chief and Acting President of the U.S. should pass that cartoon map on to Speaker Pelosi. He can attach his health care plan for replacing the ACA along with it. Maybe we should put Javanka in charge. Let's get 'er done, you know what I mean you fucking racist prick? Anyway why aren't you out there raking the forests like your good little Fuhrer suggested?

    6. Looks like mm is off the meds again.

    7. Yeah, a bit agitated. I figured, they, at that mental institution, only let them use internet once a week. So has to spit it out fast. I hope it's therapeutic...

    8. One thing we all can agree on is black people are horrible drivers. Mm you have to concede that.

    9. mm, you go boy. Here’s a link we can all enjoy. I fear Dave and Mao won’t get it.



    10. mm is one of those faggot liberals. Probably like Wes Anderson movies.

    11. DavidinCal,
      Let's get back to you supporting an 80% top tax rate so we can fix the black on black murder crisis.

    12. Black on black and white on white homicides peaked in 2001 and have been declining since then. Black on black homicides were down 8% last year. Such homicides are driven largely by gang activity in Chicago, Baltimore and Washington DC. The shutdown isn't going to help that problem much. Maybe David should have a talk with Trump and/or McConnell about it.

    13. @Anon 2:30 -- When you say 'last year" which year do you mean? I am guessing you mean 2017 Can you provide a link please?

      I do know that the number of black murder victims increased by a staggering 1,800 per year between 2014 and 2016. If the number did decrease in 2017, that was from a very high level in 2016.

      BTW the increase in gang activity happened because of a decrease in aggressive, effective policing. That in turn was driven by the black lives matter movement and unwise policy by the Obama Justice Dept.

    14. Gang activity is a reflection of systemic poverty in communities. Instead of less unaccountability to the community from police officers, large-scale investment (healthcare, housing, education, job opportunities, etc) in these communities, would be much more effective and provide a way better return on the investment.

      All it takes is to stop using the black on black murder crisis as a cudgel to beat minorities, and instead use it as an opportunity to raise the living standards of our fellow Americans.

    15. Correction: "less unaccountability" should read "less accountability" in the 6:02 PM reply.

    16. @6:02 -- We have tried this approach ever since LBJ. Today we do spend a fortune providing healthcare, housing, and education. It's the right thing. People shouldn't be deprived of these basic needs.

      But, the sudden jump in inner city crime between 2014 and 2016 didn't happen because people became suddenly poorer. It happened because police protection became less effective, especially in cities where the Obama Justice Dept. took significant control over local police activity.

      BTW providing jobs is different from providing housing, healthcare, etc. To provide jobs, employers must be encouraged to expand and to hire people. Raising corporate taxes and increasing burdensome regulations are counterproductive. They discourage corporate hiring. The Republican approach of cutting taxes and regulations is working. It has produced near record unemployment for black and Hispanic Americans.

    17. "Economic anxiety" led to the election of an immoral, grifting, business failure, and self-admitted sexual predator as President of the United States, yet it had zero effect on inner city crime.
      Funny that.

    18. "...burdensome regulations are counterproductive.."

      Let me know when your grandkids lives are sacrificed for the good of the Establishment Elites. Until then, I reject the "socialism" of the rest of us paying corporate America's external costs.

    19. "Today we do spend a pittance providing healthcare, housing, and education."
      Fixed it for you.

    20. "To provide jobs, employers must be encouraged to expand and to hire people. Raising corporate taxes and increasing burdensome regulations are counterproductive. They discourage corporate hiring."

      Unless employers are economic know-nothings, they need demand for a product or service they can sell before increasing investment and job opportunities at their business.
      If you have a factory making widgets, and a warehouse full of widgets you can't sell (due to lack of demand) paying a low corporate tax rate is a terrible reason to increase jobs at your business.
      OTOH, when your widgets are selling like hotcakes and you can't keep up with demand, you should still increase investment and hire more employees to meet the demand, even if your corporate tax rate is 35%.

      Based on my experience, i'm not surprised you don't understand this. I've heard their arguments, and I'm confident Conservative's don't understand anything about business.

  8. “This is who our elites actually are.”

    Without denying the power of money and corporations, there’s a slippery slope here. Somerby often accuses liberals of telling themselves pleasing tales to make themselves feel virtuous; the right-wing term for that is “virtue signaling.” But there is a similar danger when constantly viewing the world as a conspiracy of “them” vs “us”. It can be a pleasing tale that “we” (Somerby for example) tell ourselves. We become the heroes in a world of villains. And it can lead to a sort of self-righteous doing of nothing except railing from your basement or shaking your fist at the heavens. Inaction becomes justified because you convince yourself of the hopelessness of your cause.

    Somerby went to Harvard along with his roommate Al Gore. Does that make either of them “elites?” Al Gore is wealthy and was a powerful politician. Does that make him elite?

    Is the “elite” a monolithic faction, or are there differences of opinion? If they are not “rational”, are we?

    And, does it ever occur to Somerby that maybe Gore was a weak candidate, just like he accused Hillary of being? A winner usually manages to win, despite a couple of dumb remarks about the buttons on his coat.

    And if the goal is to fight the elite, then the focus should be on efforts to do that, rather than an endless and ineffectual repetition of outrage.

  9. Somerby seems to feel that the election of Trump is a dire result, caused by the horrible elites.

    I would venture to guess that many Trump voters don’t feel that way. Would Mr Somerby care to explain how his above-stated view jibes with his oft-stated demand that “liberals” respect The Others? Or is he saying we must respect their reasons *for making a big mistake*?

  10. Clothing communicates social status and economic class standing. That makes it very important to people who inhabit dominance hierarchies delineated by socioeconomic status. People care about this because they care about where they stand in their communities.

    Somerby would have to be autistic not to understand this fact of human life that transcends time and place. To define it as trivial makes him about as tone deaf as anyone can be.

    Then there is the FACT that New York City is the center of the fashion industry in the US. Someone who writes about fashion is writing about the major industry (second perhaps to finance) of the area. It matters, just as the entertainment industry matters in Los Angeles, and tourism matters in Alaska and oil and gas matter in Wyoming and cattle matter in Utah (where there are ads for farm singles).

    Somerby doesn't think before he writes any more.

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  12. Go brush yer teeth, mm. Yer comments literally stink like shit.

    1. "Like shit", but not "actually shit", so no chance mm's comments will be a Republican Presidential nominee.

  13. "That was multimillionaire Diane Sawyer, asking Marla Maples, long ago, about getting it on with The Donald."

    At the time, Donald Trump wasn't running for office. He was a celebrity solely because of his social life. His high profile divorce was the only reason he was being interviewed at all. It isn't as if Sawyer were ignoring the important things about him in order to focus on sex. There was nothing important about the man. He himself was using sex to gain the public spotlight. Why blame Sawyer and why is this any kind of example of the press ignoring political issues in order to pursue sexual questions? It isn't.

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