Thomas Friedman’s Moustache is Curved
I don’t think much of the New York Press, but I am grateful to ALDaily for linking to Matt Taibbi’s review of Thomas Friedman’s new book. Some highlights: It’s not that he occasionally screws up and fails to make his metaphors and images agree. It’s that he always screws it up. … The difference between ...
I don't think much of the New York Press, but I am grateful to ALDaily for linking to Matt Taibbi's review of Thomas Friedman's new book. Some highlights:
I don’t think much of the New York Press, but I am grateful to ALDaily for linking to Matt Taibbi’s review of Thomas Friedman’s new book. Some highlights:
It’s not that he occasionally screws up and fails to make his metaphors and images agree. It’s that he always screws it up. … The difference between Friedman and an ordinary bad writer is that an ordinary bad writer will, say, call some businessman a shark and have him say some tired, uninspired piece of dialogue: Friedman will have him spout it. And that’s guaranteed, every single time. He never misses.
On an ideological level, Friedman’s new book is the worst, most boring kind of middlebrow horseshit. … Man flies on planes, observes the wonders of capitalism, says we’re not in Kansas anymore. (He actually says we’re not in Kansas anymore.) That’s the whole plot right there.
[Wait a second. You’re going to get a lot of guff from readers who actually follow the link to that review and see how glibly dissmissive it is. It doesn’t even get into the substance of foreign policy.–Ed.] OK, the review is not a top-drawer piece of intellectual analysis. But neither is much of what Friedman writes. From the most valued plot of pundit real estate in America he dispenses banalities that he passes off as profound because he first heard them from a hotelier in Dubai or a systems analyst in Bangalore. [Not so fast. Where do you get off expropriating Drezner’s “–Ed.” gimmick? Well, he stole it (scroll down) from Mickey Kaus, didn’t he?] Anyway, the point is, why does it fall to the New York Press to deflate the biggest, most overrated blowhard in all of punditdom? There’s still time for Leon Wieseltier to assign it to Jackson Lears, Alan Wolfe, or one of his other merciless but rigorous review-essayists….
Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and co-host of the Space the Nation podcast. Twitter: @dandrezner
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