Thursday, November 26, 2009

I Dunno...


Alexis-Charles-Henri Clérel de Tocqueville (29 July 1805, Paris – 16 April 1859, Cannes), truest witness to the greatest incarnation of America

Q: Whatever Happened to Tocqueville's America?

A: There was a war.

31 comments:

J— said...

Okay, I just watched the video. He jumps from the time Tocqueville visited to the Progressive Era. The Civil War has no role, at least in his summarized explanation in the interview. It sounds like a fancy version of Liberal Fascism.

Substance McGravitas said...

To be fair, the constitution also developed some lady trouble at some point last century.

That's, like, the voting base doubled in a moment and some of those people want to SHARE CHORES.

Truly, the golden age is over.

M. Bouffant said...

I did not need to know that NRO has a tee vee section.

None of these clowns have noticed that the United Snakes is no longer composed of farmers, cowboys & residents of small towns.

Or that emailing spreadsheets to each other is what passes for economic activity these days.

Substance McGravitas said...

Also: free land. Something of a subsidy there.

Smut Clyde said...

What was wrong with people then, that they cared two tugs on a dead dingo's dick for the opinion of some effete French tourist?

Fortunately you are now a strong self-confident nation.

Substance McGravitas said...

What was wrong with people then, that they cared two tugs on a dead dingo's dick for the opinion of some effete French tourist?

Gullible Americans had heard of these exotic dead dingo dicks but were not sure which kind of foreigner held the tasty treats.

ckc (not kc) said...

...why two tugs?

Substance McGravitas said...

One well-crewed tug does not have the pulling power required by today's dead dingo dicks.

J— said...

What was wrong with people then, that they cared two tugs on a dead dingo's dick for the opinion of some effete French tourist?

Burke didn't make it across the pond to write a travel account, so our contemporary right-wingers have to settle for the French guy.

mikey said...

Seems to me that the first tug on the dead dingoe's dick would likely seperate the dick from the dead dingo, rendering the second tug somewhat superfluous.

If the dingoe's dick can withstand the first tug and, indeed, remain attached to the dingo throughout the second tug, it is highly possible that the dingo isn't, in fact, dead.

Run. Run for your lives...

Smut Clyde said...

The fact is that Australian law places strict controls on who can tug on a dead dingo's dick. Basically, indigenous tribes have the first refusal, in order to preserve the traditional crafts of carving the penis-bone or baculum. Dingo bacula were the most convenient source of bone of a certain size for carving into a number of implements or ornamental artworks in the millennia before the arrival of Europeans, and so these crafts evolved.

The baculum is at its best state for this purpose -- acquiring a kind of greenish-blue patina that is much sought-after among connoisseurs -- if the dingo's carcass has decomposed to the point that the dick comes off after two tugs. If a single tug is sufficient, it has past its best and the resulting carving will probably end up in one of the tourist shops catering for people who don't know any better.

I was about to adopt the Explaining Voice to tell you about the specific colour words that exist within various Aborigine languages to describe this special hue, but SHUT UP SMUT

Another Kiwi said...

When bacula were exchanged for salt, a new chapter in mankind's ceaseless striving...for... something something something.

Another Kiwi said...

Someone left de Tocqueville out in the rain

tigris said...

Oooh, someone to add to the time-machine lover list! Hotcha!

Wiki seems to provide what might be at least part of de T.'s answer for this supposed loss of self-reliance: growing income inequality caused in part by large inheritances creating a de facto aristocracy. Obviously we need to impose heavy inheritance duties and become again "so enamored of equality that [we] would rather be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom." Maybe salary caps in addition to much higher taxes on the wealthiest. I also can't see him being happy with lower taxes on capital gains, which reward wealth rather than work.

J— said...

More longing for that perfect antebellum democracy from Rahe: He positively compares the teabaggers with protests against the 1828 tariff.

Substance McGravitas said...

de T.'s answer

Come on, it's complicated sorting that stuff out. It's enough to know that he said some nice things about America when nobody really had meaningful rights and you could starve to death in perfect liberty.

Substance McGravitas said...

I cannot think of any anti-government protest on this scale in the United States since the eruption against the Tariff of Abominations in 1828.

The Missing War cannot be found.

tigris said...

The Missing War cannot be found.

Wars. Anti-Vietnam and anti-Iraq demonstrations were larger and longer. They also didn't need a nap and a nitroglycerin tab to finish.

Substance McGravitas said...

There are indeed a lot of 400 pound gorillas obscuring that elephant.

Smut Clyde said...

As your own words make clear, those were protests against specific wars rather than against the government, so NO COMPARISON.

Someone left de Tocqueville out in the rain
And his furniture has verdigris.

Smut Clyde said...

In time of warfare, the elephant is so precious that she should always be attended by a bodyguard of 400-lb gorillas.
Churchill said it. Or was it Orwell?

Substance McGravitas said...

This page of elephant quotes contains no such thing. Jackie Kennedy's is nice though.

Smut Clyde said...

Nor does that website have any quotations about dead dingos' dicks, which I think demonstrates its incompleteness.

Substance McGravitas said...

But but... dead dingo dicks are on the lips of nearly everyone these days!

ckc (not kc) said...

...dead dingo dicks are on the lips of nearly everyone...

...perhaps photographic documentation?

mikey said...

Aaarrrrgggghhh. There you go again. Does 'dead' modify 'dingo', or 'dick'?

Indeed, I think at this point it's critical that we determine just precisely what it is that's dead, and the actual state of the dingoe's dick.

Unless it's Schroedinger's Dingoe's Dick, known politely in historical science as "Schroendinger's Dingo"...

Another Kiwi said...

"There is only one thing worse than being a dead Dingo's dick, and that is being a dead Elephant's dick" -Oscar Wilde

J— said...

What now? We bury the dead dingo dicks and feed the living dingo dicks.

—Marquis de Pombal after the Lisbon earthquake of 1755

ckc (not kc) said...

... and the zombie dingo dicks, what about them? They're not on anyone's lips.

ckc (not kc) said...

LAST!

Substance McGravitas said...

Very well then, I grant you the last comment.