How Does Slate Stay In Business?

Publishing such superficial fluff as this ‘Iron Man’ ( Shell Head to his fans). Not only does the twit miss the whole point entirely of comic books (the Stiftung used to have those early Iron Man comics, btw, when they came out), the idiot also omits the impact of Tony Stark being the flawed, alcoholic hero, etc.

You Will Be Hypnotized Into False Consciousness

Comparing Tony Stark to Steve Jobs is timely in a shallow-meet-our-weekly-deadline sort of way. It is snarky. It is also 100% pure bullshit. It demonstrates profound ignorance if not willful stupidity about either (or both) fictional character or the real man. (This after Larry Ellison just got paid $197 million as Oracle’s CEO). Mere quibbles before the piece’s lazy claim that Iron Man was and is really a subliminal attempt to hypnotize young Americans into capitalism’s dark embrace (forgetting George Reeve’s earlier portrayal standing avec flag), etc. Just what is the point of the Slate exercise?

We could go on about Slate’s flatulence. And probably will after seeing the movie. (We’ve heard good things from people who, like the Stiftung, enjoy this sort of pop culture).

Doubtlessly these same grandees at Slate are also in the tank for the Crown Prince.


  1. DrLeoStrauss says

    Aldershot, that was hilarious. Fareed the Davos Man indeed. The review tried to have it all ways, a little bit Fareed, a little bit Kagan and a dash of Indian Co-Prosperity visions. We haven’t learned much from the Warlord’s reign after all.

  2. Anon says

    The amazing thing is how Bush escapes responsibility for losing Lebanon. Think of the millions spent on intelligence operartions and various ruses, schemes, and ops. All for nothing.
    Condis fingerprints are on the current setbacks.
    Leo – you wrote a while back about how dizzing the lying had become for some people.
    Poor Sinora – doen’t deserve this.

  3. Anon says

    Here’s some unintentional comedy:,7340,L-3542727,00.html

    Faisel the Saudi warns about Islamic theocracy coming to Beirut. Again, the lies are so thick and everyone is so drunk on lies and propaganda. Btw – can’t wait to see that Arab legion he puts in Lebanon.

    Bush hinted yesterday that the US would prop up the gov. There is a real danger he’ll stick troops in there and one can imagine McCain calling for it.

  4. Comment says

    re Lebanon – McCain’s accidental/intentional/both confusion of Shia/Sunni/Qaeda/Hezb/Hamas etc illustrates a larger problem on the right – What used to be a political asset of sowing confusion among voters has made it all but impossible for many in Congress – esp GOP – to understand or explain what is going on in Lebanon.
    As Hezb moves against Sunni in Lebanon’s Tripoli news stories call it the worst violence since the civil war. Down the memory hole goes both the war with Israel and last years war wit Qaeda and palestianian elements in the refugee camps.
    Jumblatt is routinely called an ally, but he used to be an enemy as recently as 2003 when he celebrated an attack in Iraq against Wolfowitz and others in that hotel in Baghdad.
    It gets so confusing – even if Bush and Condi were not overdosing on propaganda – They can’t recall what propaganda they are supposed to believe and what they are supposed to forget. The ideologues now talk about the Bekaa – forgetting that’s where they said the wmd were hidden a few years ago.
    Anyway – bad tidings ahead.

  5. DrLeoStrauss says

    Was watching that last nite after the wedding sketch and decided to watch something on the cooking or home repair channel instead. You’re right, Scotts is not enough.

  6. Comment says

    It is sort of funny – in a sad way – that Feith’s most serious interview, since Iraq was done, was just on Daily Show with Stewart.

  7. Anon says

    re Lebanon – Here’s Peretz imaginative take – We think he is only half right. Blaming Condi has its merits. But it was a sinkhole to begin with – This idea that Isreal was just about to win is belied by the fact things were getting worse by the day.. It was actually brilliant when Barak withdrew in 2000. But retreat is always a hard sell — especially when wise. Btw – of all the thinks Olmert to get in trouble over.

  8. DrLeoStrauss says

    re Lebanon, suspect you should ask our good friend Dr Hadar. Had Fallon not fallen on his sword (needlessly and to little effect in any event), we would be very skeptical of any Iran action. Now? There would be a cosmic irony for AEI to host a post-bombing event “The Audacity of Force” or the like . . .

    We’ve long ago lost the plot thread there and would call for Joss Whedon or other good script doctor to clean things up. The Olmert character is simply baffling and doesn’t seem to advance the story arc from any point of view.

  9. Comment says

    Aldershot, Imo – Obama will not pick Clark – Clark has political problems that obviate his otherwise good mil exp. We sense he will pick either Claire McCaskil or Jim Webb or Gov. Richardson. Nunn is too much part of the past – He will skew his narrative. Webb is a pol-in-progress and is not naturally gifted on the hustings, but his exp is a big stfu to McCain and company w/ their preening attitude.

    Btw – Leo, do you think this Lebanon thing will persist and connect to Iran in pre election bombing? We plan to be in the region this summer.

  10. DrLeoStrauss says

    re Iron Man — terrific flick. Four Leos out of five. (Theater filled with AARP eligible members along with the younger set). Great actors, working in unison with a good script. Drama, laughs and superb special effects. Oh, and the script actually *was 180 degrees from what this Slate twit assumed*.

    Aldershot, thanks for the vote of confidence. Together, we could all run a pretty good cruise. It would be amusing to think how we would write up our advertisement and how we would market it. If The Nation is the standard, we’d be in good shape, no?

  11. Aldershot says

    I’ll hold out for the Stiftung cruise.

    I always liked Sam Nunn. A good choice for Obama or Hillary might be Wes Clark, schmoozer extraodinaire.

  12. DrLeoStrauss says

    re Grover:

    Grover Norquist on the Next Republicanism

    Thursday, May 15, 2008
    12:15 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.

    New America Foundation
    1630 Connecticut Ave, NW, 7th Floor
    Washington, DC

    Of the two competing coalitions in American politics — the “leave us alone” coalition and the “takings” coalition — Grover Norquist argues that the “leave us alone” coalition is growing in both power and size and will continue to do so with the next generation. The debate stretches beyond the role of taxation and government to the heart of U.S. foreign policy and its role in the world.

    Featured Speaker

    Grover Norquist
    President, Americans for Tax Reform

    Author, Leave Us Alone: Getting the Government’s Hands Off Our Money, Our Guns, Our Lives


    Steven Clemons
    Director, American Strategy Program,
    New America Foundation

    Copies of Leave Us Alone will be sold at the event.

    To RSVP for this event, click on the red button, or go to the event page:


    Grover’s ability to survive and prosper in Washington regardless of environment is a testament to his savvy and skill. We recall being with him briefly in Tokyo in 1995 when he was flogging his then new book “Rock The House” re Newt’s take over, etc. He escaped scandal during the Republican Unified Government remarkably and seeks to return to marketing hi ‘libertarian’ identity.

    Interesting anti-McCain bed fellows . . .

  13. Dr Leo Strauss says

    re the ‘clean break’

    If only it were true. Alas, the Crown Prince after 2002 himself fudged on the war at least once. And whatever he may say, he never voted so it is all posturing on his part regardless.

    All behind us now. His narrow margin looks like it will be enough to allow the coronation to begin.

    What the MSM may be saying (frankly we largely stopped paying attention to all the to and fro a while ago) is that the Crown Prince is a lightweight on foreign and defense policy. It is, from our point of view, simply a statement of fact. In that case, a VP who has experience, connections and reputation in the national security arena might be a real asset against a McCain ticket — i.e., some like a Sam Nunn of his era.

    McCain’s biggest problem still remains how many Movement conservatives loathe him. The Grover thing was only minor example. It’s a funny thing. We liked him precisely because of all that. Today both sets are unhappy with him.

    Perhaps he should do a TV show and audition VPs with a viewer voting ala American Idol.

  14. DrLeoStrauss says

    Yeah, we watched Tweety and Olbermann pretending to be Huntley-Brinkley joined by Russert clearly inflated with new gravitas injections.

    As we noted in an earlier post, his coronation was already then all but inevitable. Although we did laugh out loud the other day at Vanity Fair’s thinly disguised fluffing by putting RFK on the cover (as if the Crown Prince would survive 5 minutes in a room with RFK when it was on the line).

  15. Comment says

    Btw – the media, MSM -even those favorable to Obama, still cannot pinpoint why Obama is winning when he was not even considered a serious contender a year ago. It’s all the war. We notice David Gregory and others often suggesting Obama support this or that pro war person for VP. It never occurs to these folks to tell McCain to have an anti war Veep. Because the whole Establishment was pro war – with media liberals relying on those Pollack books etc. They even now roll their eyes when pressed on the issue. But this is the quote than stole the job from HRC:

    “What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz and other arm-chair, weekend warriors in this Administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.” (Obama ’02)

    That quote shows more than a tactical pivot – It was a ‘clean break,’ so to speak.

  16. Comment says

    Leo we know you’re anti Crown Prince/ Audacity skeptic and we respect that, so rather than gloat over Tim Russsert and Drudge calling an end to HRC’s campaign, we’ll just lump Obama’s big night next to Boris Johnson and Gianni Alemanno and the general irrational spirit of CHANGE

  17. A Random Quote says

    “First let me confess that I am now and have for many years considered myself a friend of Sidney Blumenthal’s …”
    ~Joe Conason
    Salon, 5-2-08

  18. Comment says

    Btw – did you catch Michael Gordon’s ridiculous thin sourced and self-contradictory article about alleged Hezbollah involvment againt the Surge? And the Iranian links?

    We could have done a better job pushing this story if we were war hawks – There are better (albeit superficial) linkages and anecdotes that could have been used by Gordon or those who were spinning Gordon (with his consent).

    Because of Shia pilgrimages btw Lebanon and esp Najaf – A large amount of linkages could be established btw the concerned parties.

    Gordon’s very weak examples seem to indicate a slippage in propaganda quality – a loss of will – or failure to have good intel in Shia Iraq/Iran connections.

    Considering Sinora and Maliki are supposed to be Bush’s allies – they could have helped more.

  19. Comment says

    We recall a while back , when NR was doing those trips – Alterman went on one to sort expose it as some sort of joke. Ah, but the irony is how much these people all have in common.

    When will Arianna sponsor HuffPo space trips?

  20. Dr Leo Strauss says

    It’s all quite amusing to see The Nation copying what The Movement has been doing for years. These junkets make money even if “the talent” has to slum a bit among the readership. Funny what Profit & Loss will do to ideology.

    Where is Naomi Wolf? Is Third Wave Feminism somehow outre in the year of the Crown Prince?

  21. Comment says

    Dear Nation Magazine – Tell Navasky gambling is not progressive and that stinky cruise ship is just heating up the globe and exploiting the Latinos. Ah, but that dinner with Jackson and those cocktails with Katrina …

  22. A Random Quote says

    Dear Nation Reader,

    Imagine this…

    Sunday…dinner with The Reverend Jesse Jackson.

    Monday…an intimate acoustic concert with Jackson Browne.

    Tuesday…Relaxing on the beach in Curacao next to Jeremy Scahill.

    Wednesday Night…at the blackjack table with Victor Navasky.

    Thursday…cocktails with Katrina vanden Heuvel.

    What’s going on here? Did you die and go to heaven?

    No, that’s what you’ll find on this year’s Nation Magazine Seminar Cruise to the Caribbean. It’s the second week in December – you’ll be ready for some sunshine by then and you’ll be among progressive friends.

  23. DrLeoStrauss says

    A non-sequitor — an invitation from purgatory:

    Robert Kagan

    to discuss his book

    The Return of History and the End of Dreams

    Monday, May 12, 2008

    [details omitted].

    If you happen to know of any athletic individuals with an enthusiasm for jettisoning cream bakery goods for distance, accuracy and velocity, we’re just saying . . .

  24. Aldershot says

    Tom Friedman, of all people.

    “By holding himself to a rings-true standard, Brooks acknowledges that all he does is present his readers with the familiar and ask them to recognize it. Why, then, has his particular brand of stereotype-peddling met with such success? In recent years, American journalism has reacted to the excesses of New Journalism — narcissism, impressionism, preening subjectivity — by adopting the trappings of scholarship. Trend pieces, once a bastion of three-examples-and-out superficiality, now strive for the authority of dissertations. Former Times editor Howell Raines famously defended page-one placement for a piece examining Britney Spears’s flailing career by describing it as a “sophisticated exegesis of sociological phenomenon.” The headline writer’s favorite word is “deconstructing.” (Last year, the Toronto Star deconstructed a sausage.) Richard Florida, a Carnegie Mellon demographer whose 2002 book The Rise of the Creative Class earned Bobos-like mainstream cachet, nostalgizes an era when readers looked to academia for such insights:

    “You had Holly Whyte, who got Jane Jacobs started, Daniel Bell, David Riesman, Galbraith. This is what we’re missing; this is a gap,” Florida says. “Now you have David Brooks as your sociologist, and Al Franken and Michael Moore as your political scientists. Where is the serious public intellectualism of a previous era? It’s the failure of social science to be relevant enough to do it.” ”

  25. DrLeoStrauss says

    Here’s Hitch’s commentary on the “World’s Top 100” intellectuals . . . (soundtrack unrequired).

    And the Times’ response:

    The countdown of the world’s ‘public intellectuals’

    Can we rank our favourite thinkers the way we do pop-cultural trivia? Rod Liddle takes to task the sloppy thinking behind a countdown of the world’s ‘public intellectuals’

    That nice magazine for middlebrow liberals, Prospect, has just drawn up a list of 100 people from which its middlebrow liberal readership is enjoined to choose its top “public” intellectuals. Unsurprisingly, almost the entire list is comprised of thoroughly agreeable middlebrow liberals – and fair enough, you might think. After all, if that glossy fanzine for canine-lovers, Dog World, had held a readers’ poll to find its top 10 intellectuals, you would not be shocked to find Peter Purves, Barbara Woodhouse and – oh, I don’t know – maybe Pongo and Missus battling it out for the number-one spot. Lesson one: know your audience.

  26. Comment says

    Slate has become too predictable lately – Not as contrarian as they like to think of themselves. The highbrow isn’t really highbrow – Hitch is the only star and he usually phones his column in and his work only interesting on slate one third of the time he posts.

    Drop in the bucket money-wise for Gates & Co. to buy some media presence.

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