Media

Brooks: In His New Tape, Bin Laden Sounds Like He’s Been ‘Reading Lefty Blogs’

Last night on PBS’ The NewsHour, New York Times columnist David Brooks compared 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden’s latest video message to “lefty blogs,” saying the al Qaeda head is like “one of these childish people posting rants at the bottom of the page.” He then went to describe why he drew such a comparison:

You read this thing, and it’s like he’s been sitting around reading lefty blogs, and he’s one of these childish people posting rants at the bottom the page, you know, Noam Chomsky and all this stuff.

You can’t help read it and not laugh at it, occasionally, because it is just absurd. It’s flying this way, and that way, weird conspiracy theories, and mortgages, global warming. He throws it all in there.

Watch it:

Brooks’ comments are part of an effort by prominent right-wing voices to try to tie Osama bin Laden to the left. At Hot Air, Allahpundit claimed bin Laden sounded like a “socialist icon,” invoking many of the same passages Brooks did. At Political Vindication, Uncle Seth the Noble went further, claiming bin Laden sounded like Daily Kos’ Markos Moulitsas:

Osama’s Left wing platitudes stand out remarkably in this transcript! After reading this, who do you think he is pulling for in the next election…. Republicans or Democrats? Seriously, would this not pump up the entire Democratic Party base if this speech were given at next year’s convention? I could see Markos ‘Screw Them’ Moulitsas break dancing in the background as the cheers and applauses roared in from the Democratic diehards. Can you hear them? “Osama for President!”

Frank J, a Pajamas Media blogger, concludes “Kos has to get this guy as a diarist before HuffPo does.”

Considering bin Laden’s threat yesterday to “escalate the killing and fighting against” America, Brooks and his fellow conservatives’ attempts at humor — and that’s a charitable reading of their words — are especially insulting, as it impugns not only the patriotism, but also the character and intelligence of literally millions of daily participants in the progressive blogosphere.

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Transcript:

JIM LEHRER: And finally tonight, here comes Petraeus, and other stories of the week, as analyzed by Shields and Brooks, syndicated columnist Mark Shields, New York Times columnist David Brooks.Mark, first, have a thought about the new bin Laden tape?

MARK SHIELDS, Syndicated Columnist: I guess only after listening to Judy’s discussion, two things hit me. One, there were no overt threats in it to the United States. And, two, it was quite self-indulgent, I thought, on his part, I mean, in that sense. It obviously was made rather recently, too.

JIM LEHRER: Scary in any way?

DAVID BROOKS, Columnist, New York Times: No, ludicrous. I mean, on one hand, he’s a malevolent guy who killed 3,000 Americans. But you read this thing, and it’s like he’s been sitting around reading lefty blogs, and he’s one of these childish people posting rants at the bottom the page, you know, Noam Chomsky and all this stuff.

You can’t help read it and not laugh at it, occasionally, because it is just absurd. It’s flying this way, and that way, weird conspiracy theories, and mortgages, global warming. He throws it all in there.

The one thing that leapt out — and Bruce Hoffman and the others mentioned this — was how Western it is. And a friend of mine, Reuel Gerecht, points out that there’s this argument that Western ideas never permeated into the Arab world, but in fact it’s all — I mean, a lot of the worst ideas from the West have permeated in, and he’s picked up Noam Chomsky, and he’s picked up some of the anti-globalization stuff. And that’s what infuses this.