David Brooks is my least favorite tier-1 pundit. His columns consist of pointless drivel phoned in from his suburban Washington compound. He doesn’t even try anymore. But he is the master of the false equivalence.
Call it Brooks’s Law of Political Equivalency: For any Republican/conservative/right-wing culpability, there is an equal and opposite Democratic/liberal/left-wing culpability: If the Republicans are beset by extremism and fanaticism, then the Democrats are beset by extremism and fanaticism. If the Republicans display intransigence, the Democrats display intransigence. If the Republicans are in thrall to a discredited economic theory, then the Democrats are in thrall to a discredited economic theory. If the Republicans exist in a media echo chamber, then the Democrats exist in a media echo chamber. And so on.
What follows is an awesome list of 20 clear examples of David Brooks’ concept of “balance.” My personal favorite example? Sure…
The Democrats talk and look like a conventional liberal party (some liberals, who represent, at most, 30 percent of the country, are disappointed because President Obama hasn’t ushered in a Huffington Post paradise). Meanwhile, many Republicans flock to Herman Cain or Newt Gingrich because they are more interested in having a leader who can take on the mainstream news media than in having one who can plausibly govern. (The Two Moons: 11/21)
Republicans vote based on their perception of the candidate’s ability to propound Republican dogma. Therefore, the Democrats must be in thrall to an equal and opposite dogma, represented here by the image of a “Huffington Post paradise.” Exactly what kind of paradise that might be is immaterial, although it is an interesting topic of speculation.