Wednesday, March 31, 2004

More David Brooks: Noam Scheiber offers a half-hearted defense of Brooks over at TNR. He offers the same defenses I did (though he seems more convinced of their power to inoculate).
But you see where I'm headed: Issenberg is guilty of the exact same thing--ignoring the broader point that Brooks is basically right. Yes, there are pockets of Blue in Red states, and pockets of Red in Blue states. But, by and large, there do seem to be some stark cultural differences between the kinds of people you find in one type of state versus the other.
This was my point about changing the scope of view in order to pick at technicalities. But Scheiber also admits that Brooks is guilty on a number of counts, and that being a serious journalist who uses humor to make points is not license to selectively analyze or ignore inconvenient facts.

I guess what I like most about Brooks is that the picture he draws traces my experience of the red/blue divide. That is to say, as Scheiber does, he's generally accurate. But I'd rather have him be specifically accurate (and I'm not asking for PhD candidate sophistication), even if it means making the picture a bit more complex.

No comments: