Friday, January 03, 2014

Doobie More Clever, Dept.

Weed: Been There. Done That.
Hey, Cap'n Bringdown, you're harshing my mellow!  *ha ha*  No, but seriously, NYT columnist David Brooks writes about how he "outgrew" pot because of "embarrassing incidents"--no, not as good as you might hope--such as getting tongue-tied in English class.  See, at first, he and his equally immature boon chums would occasionally fire a fatty, blow a bone, fumarse un porro, just for shits'n'giggles, but then he and they "developed higher pleasures."  No, not the Lucky Pierre, although that was my first guess for him, too.  He repeats that they "graduated to more satisfying pleasures"--again, not the Lucky Pierre--that I have to share with you:
The deeper sources of happiness usually involve a state of going somewhere, becoming better at something, learning more about something, overcoming difficulty and experiencing a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment.
Because, you see, you filthy, unmotivated slave to that resinous scrotum of Satan, only those whose lips know not the will-sapping weed are capable of personal advancement and growth.  You are too mired in your "dubstep" and your "Adventure Time marathons" to know the joys and satisfactions of achievement and knowledge.

Even as he sneers at potsmokers for being sketchy underachievers,  Brooks (street name: What Passes for Conservative Intellectualism Nowadays Yo) then weasel-words the following:
Not smoking, or only smoking sporadically, gave you a better shot at becoming a little more integrated and interesting. Smoking all the time seemed likely to cumulatively fragment a person’s deep center, or at least not do much to enhance it.
The "only smoking sporadically" allows a lot of people in his peer or demographic group to say, Oh, yeah, we're not like total wake'n'bake losers, and lets them buy into the rest of his specious argument.  Which only applies to "those potheads," amirite, guys?

But that is an intellectually dishonest rest stop on the Speciousness Highway.  Because, really, what he's saying is POT IS BADPeriod.  No medical MJ, no nothin'.  But he has to cut you, the reader, a little slack in order to get you on his wavelength.

Brooks is known for being among the less cretinous of the conservative columnists.  But this essay wants serious rethinking and rewriting.  On "healthy societies":
I’d say that in healthy societies government wants to subtly tip the scale to favor temperate, prudent, self-governing citizenship.
In those societies, government subtly encourages the highest pleasures, like enjoying the arts or being in nature, and discourages lesser pleasures, like being stoned.
Oh, David, your conservative Whiteopia, where government is subtly interventionist.  Not all regulatin' an' whatnot, but hovering like a benign guardian angel, sky-high and translucent white against the blue horizon of American Hope, nudging us to go to Shakespeare in the Park.

I'll close with this wowser:
Most of us figured out early on that smoking weed doesn’t really make you funnier or more creative (academic studies more or less confirm this).
David, I am so with you.  I look at my record racks and see acres of music produced by abstemious men and women, strangers to intoxication.  How could the sticky ick possibly fire someone's creativity?  "Academic studies more or less confirm this"?  Yeah, I'm gonna go with "less."

There's so much to criticize, just go, read.  "Clueless Puritan Privilege Doesn't Like Something"--film at 11.