Brooks's latest column is so, ugh, Brooksian. Billed as a short history of Deanism, it tries and fails to connect Howard Dean to the breakdown of fraternal orders. Or something. I'm really not sure, but I do know that PZ Myers did an excellent job gutting it:

Ooh, there [Brooks] goes, treating some nice words as if they were smutty slanders. "Secular" is a virtue: we live in a secular state, which means it carries out its functions without requiring specific religious beliefs of its citizens. It does not mean that we hunt down and persecute Christians, much as the religious right would like you to think it is so.

"Embodying the educated class" is also a lovely advantage to me. He makes it sound like some narrow, weird group of people with freakish habits, but I think he's just trying to play that divisive red-blue state game. Guess what? Alabama is full of educated people! So is Idaho! And Florida! Even Texas, although I understand they have to hide in armed enclaves. Those people we're electing to the Senate and House of Representatives and White House? Educated. Judges? Educated. Even Republicans go off to universities to learn things.

So I guess I don't understand Brooks' game. He seems to be declaring the Democrats and especially Howard Dean's clan to be the party of really smart people who like to learn things. What does that make the Republicans?

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