David Brooks vs. Liberal Wife and Kids

Howard Kurtz offered a profile of New York Times columnist/PBS house "conservative" David Brooks on Monday. It efficiently explained criticism of Brooks from both sides, and noted that Brooks also finds critics in his own home:

After Brooks gave a lukewarm review of Obama's convention speech on PBS, his wife, Sarah, texted him from their Bethesda home: "You are crazy. That was great." What was worse, she reported that their 9-year-old son, Aaron, had said: "For the first time, I really disagree with Daddy."

That, Brooks said, "was like a knife stuck in my heart."

Brooks was the only skeptical voice on the PBS set that night, saying he was "not wowed" by the speech as he has been by Obama speeches in the past, that "it was a mistake to go outside," that the speech was too long and was "a bit of a disappointment." But on several other occasions during his time on the PBS convention set, Brooks unloaded lines that made conservatives long for the good old days when their PBS spokesman was Paul Gigot.

-- On Monday of Democrat Week, Brooks asked Carter if Obama's failure to lead in the polls was all "race." Carter said it's a factor, but not as big a factor as hacked-off Hillary die-hards.

-- On that Wednesday, after Biden spoke, Brooks sounded panicked, suggesting the night made it clear that John McCain needed to take Joe Lieberman as a running mate: "Now I think it’s the clear answer."

-- On Thursday, before he clucked at the Obama address, he said the idea of McCain picking Mitt Romney as his running mate "scares the devil out of me."

-- On Wednesday of Republican Week, Brooks decried Romney’s speech as extreme "He drifted so far right, I’m sort of, my mind is boggling." But he said the rhetoric wasn’t genuine, just a "strategic choice" in case McCain loses. When one panelist said the Sarah Palin speech would be "a huge hit among Rush Limbaugh Republicans," Brooks insisted Palin’s humor was light with a common touch, not "biting, belittling" Limbaugh humor. On the Charlie Rose show, Brooks grew even wilder, saying of Romney's speech: "I thought it was borderline insane," and proclaiming Palin was "not ideological in a Rush Limbaugh sense."

-- Earlier that Wednesday, he lamented the presidential choices didn’t include someone who hated tax cuts: "There might be a candidate who says ‘Actually, at this time in our country we can’t afford these massive tax cuts anyway,’ but that candidate is not running for president."

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