So, reading David Brooks when he is critical of the GOP is sometimes like watching a movie trailer for a bad comedy. You’re nodding along, laughing, things are going great, the narrator is saying something like “They were a perfect match, and had planned the perfect life, until…” and you hear the cheesy record scratch. Then there is, I don’t know, some kind of obnoxious kid or mean aunt or something. Maybe a really big rambunctions dog who raps. It’s not important. The important thing is that you are suddenly reminded that what you were vaguely enjoying is actually terrible.
That can sum up Brooks’s latest column about what an unbearable load Ted Cruz is. He starts with a story I had never heard, about how Cruz went to the Supreme Court to try to keep someone in jail for 16 years for stealing a calculator (he should have gotten a max of two, apparently)*. It is a perfect illustration of his unbending brutality and lack of anything relatable to human compassion. There’s even a few really good lines, like when he speaks of Cruz’s always-apocolyptic rhetoric, saying “As is the wont of inauthentic speakers, everythings is described as a maximalist existential threat.”