The news of Brooks being fired and then arrested came via e-mail. Conservatives across the country cheered in unison that justice had been finally served on David Brooks, The New York Times ersatz conservative and full-time insult-hurler.
Alas, it was Rebekah Brooks of the other tabloid, News of the World, on the other side of the pond to whom rough justice was being ladled out. The American right is still stuck with the window-dressing rightist that no one in the Republican Party considers a Republican and no one in the conservative movement considers a conservative.
Still, his kind — along with fellow Fifth Columnist Kathleen Parker — is not new to Sodom and Gomorrah, ahem, New York and Washington.
Garry Wills, whom Bill Buckley must have regarded as a great mistake, began his life as a writer for National Review and then upon his departure made a career of taking cheap shots at Ronald Reagan and conservatives.
Wills plowed the field for Vichy Republicans like the Parkers and Brookses of the world.
What purpose do these folks serve, other than furthering their own careers by co-operating and cheering for the opposition?
Brooks and Parker never met a Republican they liked, unless maybe it was Lowell Weicker, the irritating left-winger from Connecticut who even provoked the normally pacific Reagan into calling him a “schmuck” and a “pompous, no good fathead.”
Weicker spent his career trashing conservatives. Weicker, it was said by official Washington, was an “adult.” A “grownup.” Sounds familiar.
More to the point, Brooks, Parker and the establishment they represent never met a conservative or Tea Party member they liked. Of course, neither genre is likely to be found at a Georgetown or Manhattan cocktail party. The sophisticates who presume to speak for the right simply couldn’t be more wrong.
They are in the liberal establishment to serve as window dressing, for entertainment purposes; but not to be taken seriously by their captors and certainly not by anybody on the right. They can’t stand the idea that there might be a party of the commentariat to which they are not invited.
After all, Mr. Brooks fell in love with Obama after he was impressed by the crease in Obama’s pants. He used last week’s column to trash Republicans for hanging tough on preventing tax increases. In it, he claims to be speaking for a group of people who agree with him. He suggests in parentheses, “You might call us conservatives.” You might, but not with a straight face.
Today’s column by Mr. Brooks continues in a long and boring, uninteresting and anti-intellectual line of his usual vapidness issued from his holier-than-though perch. He trashes conservative leaders for their principles; he trashes conservative talk show hosts for their principles; he trashes conservative candidates for their principles.
Okay, we get it. The first rule of getting ahead in Washington is to sell out your principles. But Brooks and Parker violate the first rule of the movie “Good Will Hunting.” They are unoriginal.
Mrs. Parker’s role began by bashing Sarah Palin. More recently, she’s spent most of her time defending Obama, as befits any good insider. On Sunday, Parker wrote about the president’s prevarications in describing his mother’s so-called problems with health insurance. “It’s likely that the president will be forgiven this exaggeration in the service of a greater truth.” Beg pardon?
No real conservative believes the truth can ever be served with a lie.
Days before the turn in the American Revolution, Thomas Paine warned against the Summer Soldier and the Sunshine Patriot. Neither Brooks nor Parker has so far as anybody knows ever taken a conservative position much less fought in the conservative wars.
They remind one of Princess Leia and R2D2 on the floating barge of Jabba the Hutt. Parker dressed and chained, captive of the liberal establishment. Brooks as R2D2 with a drink tray strapped to his head.
This is ultimately the problem with the Fourth Estate and the Fifth Columnists of America’s liberal, pseudo-intellectual elite. They are enablers of the distortion of facts. They pleasantly delude themselves into thinking people like Brooks and Parker are Republicans simply because they say so. They can’t be taken seriously by conservatives and shouldn’t be.
Craig Shirley and Diana Banister are partners of Shirley & Banister Public Affairs, one of the nation’s leading media and political strategy firms. Mr. Shirley is the author of Reagan’s Revolution and Rendezvous with Destiny, two highly acclaimed books on Ronald Reagan, and is now writing December, 1941 and Citizen Newt.