We need to see ourselves more clearly!


Dullest knives in the drawer: The important news report was published by the modern incarnation of Slate. 

People who clicked to read the report had, in effect, been Schwedeled:

Why yes, Tiffany Trump's Wedding Was the Most Tiffany Trump Event of All Time

The report was posted at 8 o'clock last night. In our view, the posting of this dimwitted pseudo-report helps us see who we are.

That utterly brainless report was posted last night. A few hours earlier, Slate had published these reports:

My Husband’s Gardening Hobby Has Spiraled Out of Control

Help! I Got Accused of “Stealing” Clothes I Don’t Need at the Thrift Store.

Slate produces this bullshit all day long. Starting at 5:55 this morning, it rapidly added these deathless reports:

My Mom Friends Think I’m Nuts to Trust My Daughters

Help! My Mom Has Devised a Plan for Spying on Us at Our Family Cabin.

How To Make A Life-Changing Decision In Under 60 Minutes

My Nieces Keep Telling My Kids Our Lifestyle is Gross and Weird

Earlier this morning, Slate had also posted a half hour-long Decoder Ring podcast:

The Truth About #TheDress

In the podcast, a group of Slatesters conduct an utterly pointless discussion of the famous 2017 event in which people couldn't decide whether a certain dress was actually blue and blue or was possibly white and gold. Our gang still debates this today!

In its present incarnation, Slate marbles in some traditional news reports, sometimes under inaccurate headlines, but continues to cram its larder with dimwitted "human interest" / gossip material. Increasingly, this seems to be the only way our blue tribe publications can attract enough of our eyeballs to pay their current bills.

The online version of the Washington Post has entered the same downward spiral. Based on what the Post was offering this morning on its online front page, it's clear that the Bezos operators think we readers are very dumb and extremely self-involved.

What did we find at today's online Post? The usual array of self-help piddle preceded the paper's WORLD news section. 

When we finally reached that section, we found five WORLD news reports. One of the five was this:

King Charles, who talks to trees, poses by ancient oak for birthday photo

There's nothing so trivial or so dumb that these publications won't rush to distract us with it. We would suggest to our blue tribe members that this tells us something about us.

Our blue tribe is famous for believing that we're the smart, brilliant, highly intelligent, "well educated,"  deeply moral segment of the population. 

It should be clear by now that this tribal self-assessment may not be perfectly accurate. If we hope to produce a more potent politics, we need to understand this basic fact about our imperfect selves.

The Sarah Cuauros slog in the mud we display who we actually are and what we actually care about. So-called Great Awakenings have come and have gone in our national history.

Leaving the religious component aside, could it be time for another?


  1. tl;dr.
    "In our view, the posting of this dimwitted pseudo-report helps us see who we are."

    So, now you know that your fellow tribesmen are brain-dead zombies? Congrats! Finally.

    ...but do you realize that you, dear Bob, aren't much different yourself? Half-brain-dead? If even that...

    1. Mao turning on Bob is a good sign, but which on is Trump and which is DeSancdamonious?

  2. "Schwedeled"?
    Is Mao, now, writing the posts at TDH?

  3. Slate is a liberal publication? Is this a joke?

    1. Somerby will use any opportunity to bash liberals.

      Liberals are not responsible for the NY Times, the Washington Post, Slate, CNN, or MSNBC.

      We are also not responsible for articles about Tiffany Trump or any other inane subject Somerby wishes to complain about, including sports reporting about obscure Texas colleges 200 miles south of Dallas.

  4. how many times does Bob repeat the same things? we get it, Bob. also, every time I look at the WaPo front page, I see political news, then the opinion section, then world news (right now news about Ukraine). I think Bob is seeing "soft" news because of some things he's clicked on in the recent past. Also, I'm starting to agree with mh: if news orgs are struggling to pay bills, and "soft" news helps them stay in business, then so be it, as long as in addition to the soft news they continue covering more important topics. Bezos thinks a news org can and should be able to support itself and shouldn't rely on charity. Btw Bob, I know you don't like the rich, but Bezos has donated billions of dollars to good causes and says he intends to donate the majority of his wealth before he dies. As decent a person as you are, you won't come close to having the impact Bezos will have.

    1. You claim to have been here a while and yet you are just now noticing that Somerby repeats himself?

    2. Hi Church Lady. Nope. Noticed it long ago.

    3. And yet you asked: "how many times does Bob repeat the same things?"

      I am not Church Lady. You won't make any friends here if you, like Cecelia, insist on calling every commenter you dislike by the same derogatory name.

    4. Mike, go pick a fight with Mao. He is more your size.

    5. “ You won't make any friends here if you, like Cecelia, insist on calling every commenter you dislike by the same derogatory name.”

      Otherwise, the anonymices would be my bosom buddies.

  5. Young voters massively rejected the Republicans in this election.

    There was no historic shift of Hispanic voters away from the Democrats.

    A “red wave/red tsunami” was widely predicted by the media. Some predictions showed 54 senate seats for the Republicans. Instead, Democrats retain control. Democrats lost 54 and 61 seats in the House under Clinton and Obama respectively (1994 and 2010), both quite popular presidents who had substantial wins in the Electoral College.

    US Representative Mayra Flores, profiled a while ago by Somerby as an example of someone the Democrats “lost”, lost her seat to Vincent Gonzalez, the Democrat, by 8.4%.

    Democrats took control of the legislature in Michigan, land of myriad right wing nut jobs, thanks to the hard work of the state’s Democratic Party.

    “We” do need to see ourselves more clearly, but that includes the successes, and the “we” should also include Somerby.

    1. And women (and their allies) came out strongly in favor of choice.

  6. "Our blue tribe is famous for believing that we're the smart, brilliant, highly intelligent, "well educated," deeply moral segment of the population. "

    Liberals don't go around saying this about ourselves. Somerby uses these terms as accusations against us, as if it were bad to be smart or moral. He never quotes any liberals saying any of this stuff.

    As noted by Haidt, morality resides in both parties, but the two parties have different values. Republicans claim to care about family values, often defined as traditionalist, and religious morality. Democrats claim to care about justice, fairness, equality of opportunity, kindness toward others, and humanistic morality (not always secular).

    Democrats understand these distinctions but Somerby appears not to, despite his philosophy courses on ethics and morality.

    Democrats want to widen educational opportunities for all who seek them. Republicans prefer to maintain their advantage in college admissions based on tradition and wealth. But both have valued education.

    In their recent turn to populism, Republicans have abandoned their support for education and have attacked the value of colleges and universities. They have increased a longstanding mockery of intellectualism (going back to our nation's founding), portraying Democrats as effete, snobbish elitists. Meanwhile, Democrats as a demographic tend to be slightly better educated than Republicans, while Republicans are slightly better off financially.

    With the deliberate use of demagoguery on the right, the appeal to anti-intellectualism has dominated Republican identity, especially among MAGAs, and been emphasized in their campaigning. That doesn't mean Republicans do not value intelligence. That appeal has produced some deeply stupid ads and public statements. The lack of concern for Trump's deficits in education and intelligence has further that appearance of stupidity, but this is instrumental (a means to an end of attracting less educated voters). Stupid is as stupid does, and the Republicans have been very stupid recently. That doesn't mean the Democrats are extoling their own intelligence, whenever they point out the right wing stupidity.

    If Republicans take every educated statement as saying "Look how smart I am," when the Democrats are actually saying "we need to deal with climate change" or "junk food is bad for your health", then that is on them, not us. I don't see any Democratic candidate saying "I have the best brains" or "I have the best words" or "I am a stable genius" as Trump did. But we're the ones who claim to be super intelligent?

    Why does Somerby engage in spreading Republican propaganda like this? He can't actually believe it, can he?

    1. i wouldn't worry about it

    2. Anonymouse 1:32pm:

      “Liberals don't go around saying this about ourselves. Somerby uses these terms as accusations against us, as if it were bad to be smart or moral. He never quotes any liberals saying any of this stuff.”

      She then spends the next seven paragraphs saying exactly what Bob said she says about herself.

  7. More low-hanging fruit as Bob continues to sulk. What do we tell the children?

  8. The right wing grievance machine is in disarray at the moment, so Somerby reverts to “we’re dumb, lazy, we exude a moral squalor and nobody likes us!”

  9. What’s so important about this is that Fox, etc.,
    works so hard to appeal to the highbrow, intellectual Right. Why can’t we be more like them?
    Anyway Bob, sorry the election didn’t work
    our for you.

  10. "The Sarah Cuauros slog in the mud we display who we actually are and what we actually care about."

    What does Somerby think about this and what does he care about. With all his smarmy talks about the world's most beautiful child, it is unclear whether he was mocking her or slobbering over her. Nabokov's Humbert couldn't have said more. How does Somerby generalize from that to the rest of us? In the absence of any discussion of asylum policy, Somerby comes across as a creepy old man. And today he tells us that is us? No way. Somerby owns what he wrote, 100%.

    1. So now you’re implying Bob is a pedophile because he’s moved by this child’s story and dismayed by the reflexive hustling illustrated in putting it along side self-help tips and specious clickbait?


    2. Nah. Bob's being accused of being a pedophile, because this is how you criticize your political enemies, ever since Newt, Rush and the AM radio boys, and Fox News wrote the book on it.
      One of the great things bout TDH is that we can come here and find people like me and you, who both know that.

    3. No, the thing we both know is that you are a dishonest and nasty piece of work.

      That’s a fact and you don’t have enough pointing fingers to distract from it.

  11. The woods are lovely, dark, and deep.

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