The Worst Op-Eds of the Year


Cato's Gene Healy (see his Reason archive here) has a malevolent little piece out flinging poo at "The Five Worst Op-Eds of 2010." You'll be happy to know that Frank Rich, Al Gore, Charles Krauthammer, David Broder, and Thomas L. Friedman all made the cut.

Speaking of Friedman, I tried animating one of the two particularly crazy paragraphs in his latest effluent, but the Xtranormal system produced paranormal results. Completists can view it here.

What say you, o commenters? Worst op-eds of the year? List some suggestions, with a very brief description/critique, and I'll post some selections later this afternoon.

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  1. I’d say that any one of the anti-legalization op-eds from California would qualify.

    1. ^^^ THIS ^^^

      Although the silver lining in this shit storm was the undisputable proof that these “liberal” media hacks are actually “statist” media hacks. A point that is hopefully not lost on the majority of retards now residing in California.

      1. indisputable 🙁

  2. No doubt, Matt, you could see this one coming from a mile away, but I would hate myself if I didn’t follow through.…..n_enemies/

  3. What, was Krugman too obvious?

    1. Have you been keeping up with his latest Captain Ahab like quest to prove that Big Government is a myth? Poor Krugnuts, stuck on the high seas because he can’t even read a damn chart.

    2. Krugman is on the list of five worst editorialists.

      1. Oh, the op-op-ed

  4. I thought she was associated with reason, and yet here she seems to be passively supportive of this milquetoast centrist statism. Oh well.

    1. Should have been in reply to alan.

      1. No problem, I got it from the context. Her editorial probably doesn’t in fact make the top twenty list under the criteria in the Worst Ops article because it isn’t poorly written, nor done in bad faith, but the reasoning she engages is in the worst sense synthetic, so I’ll push it out there for nomination anyway.

    2. This seems to be an ongoing theme with former Reason contributors (cough…Weigel…cough)

      Everybody drink!!

    3. Well, whatever her view on statism, she’s a passionate supporter of milquetoast.

  5. I nominate this farrago of falsehoods:

    Even the headline is a lie: Israel Shamir is not and never has been an “employee” of Wikileaks. Wikileaks denies he’s an employee. Shamir denies he’s an employee.

    When is “editor-in-chief” Matt Welch going to publish a correction?


    2. Raimondoooooooooooooo!

    3. Hey Slobo, is this the Shamir denial you are on about? “And our collaboration began with when [Assange] sent me an email, in which he proposed to consult the WikiLeaks. Of course I said yes. Then, in the course of our correspondence, received an offer to represent WikiLeaks in CIS countries. I thought this offer very interesting, and I accepted it. Now every day becomes more interesting and fun?”

      1. Hey Cretin, no, you jerk, I mean this one on the front page of Shamir’s web site:

        “Israel Shamir is NOR a member, NEITHER an employee of Wikileaks: he is a free lance writer accredited with Wikileaks.”

        Assange has also denied this “employment” nonsense. Could you provide some evidence of this “employment”? Of course not. You’re a professional liar, and Welch is destroying what little reputation Reason has left by running your crap.

        1. Well, if they denied it, then obviously it must not be true, even if other evidence, such as their statements, contradicts those claims.

          Honestly, if people could just understand and apply this simple principle it would save everyone a lot of trouble. Look at all the time and resources we wasted prosecuting OJ.

        2. Thank you, dear Justin, for your support! I am too timid to reply them as you did, otherwise I would. This Moynihan deserves the lashes of your tongue!

        3. He’s a not a professional liar. He’s just a freedom fighter who’s hobby happens to be doing hatchet jobs on those who pose as a threat to governmental warmongers, liars, tyrants and other friends of liberty, transparency and truth.

      2. And who or what is a “Slobo”? Or is that just your speech impediment?

        1. It must be something he picked up from that Whale-song (the band, not the mammal).
          Outside of that, i’ve never heard of it either.

      3. The question is, was his relationship with Wikileaks different than the relationship between Wikileaks and, say, the Guardian?

        Being given privileged access to leaks in order to publish them in a certain region is different from acting as some sort of official spokesperson. It depends on what “represent” actually entails, as well as whether that terminology was Shamir’s or Assange’s.

    4. Me: Hey, It’s Justin Raimondo.

      Everyone: Hi Justin Raimondo!

  6. How about all the breathless op-eds about how the evul BP had destroyed the Gulf Coast forever!!1!

    1. Bought BO at $30 and change. Mmmm…

      1. Er, BP. BO cost $60 at gamestop and I don’t even play it any more.

        1. BO = Borderlands? I haven’t played in weeks myself. The Claptrap DLC was pretty weak. But for all those who haven’t bought Borderlands yet, Steam was running insane holiday deals: $80 for every 2K game there is. And that includes Borderlands and all 4 DLCs.

          1. BO = Black Ops

            Steam was also doing a huge discount on FO:NV (I want to say I read 50% off) and other Fallout related downloads.

          2. Yeah. Unfortunately I had most of them already, but I got GOTY at 50% off. A nice Christmas present for myself. Good fun.

        2. I’m sure a lot of commenters here would have given you their BO for free.

  7. Whatever the fuck Cynthia Tucker writes for Atlanta Journal-Constipation. Bitch is dumb, a complete and fucking tool of an affirmative action hire.

    1. I glanced at your second sentence and thought you were writing about Obama.

  8. Some Guy beat me to it.

    I’d say not just any of them, but all of them collectively.

  9. No Krugabe?

    I am disappoint.

  10. And Brett L reminds me: what about Little Bobby Reich’s dwarvish foot stamping about how Obama should nationalize BP?

    1. So much idiocy, so little time.

  11. The New York Times review of GM’s “Chevy Volt” gives it a thumbs-up, but every inch of the article screams “stinker.” It’s hilarious fun to pick out all the Orwell in this review. The car comes with a $7500 government payout, which still fails to make the vehicle a sensible purchase for almost any purpose.…..utomobiles
    A monstrous government boondoggle, and of big interest to anyone who equates “cars” with “freedom,” as so many Americans have traditionally done.

    1. Thanks for the link Charles–that article was the funniest thing I’ve read in a long time. They basically say that the car is an overpriced piece of shit, the brakes don’t work right, the engine doesn’t respond when you hit the gas, the hand controls don’t work, the interior is cramped and cheaply done, etc etc. But hey it’s a great car!

    2. I have a theory for this article: the was assigned to write a gush-piece to persuade yuppies to buy up the volts, and being that the writer is ultimately an honest man, he couldn’t help but unload the criticisms near the end. I don’t see how this article would leave anyone with a desire to plunk down 40k for this wuss-mobile. Chevy better hope that the superwealthy environmentalist block starts buying them up.

  12. Are Friedman’s columns some kind of group therapy thingy for him.

    Why the fuck does he think anyone cares about his moods?

  13. Does Jonathan Chait write op-eds? If so, I’d start looking there.

    But I agree with Lost in Translation (above) that Krugman has to be in the top 5 (probably multiple times). What makes Krugman such an especially abysmal bastard is that he is an intelligent, educated, and talented man, and yet he cannot rise above the most stupidly vicious partisan politics. Everything he writes is written in bad faith. One is left wondering whether some Republican kid used to beat him up and take his lunch every day at school.

    1. Agree. He’s infuriating because a writer who gets it so terribly wrong every time has to be stupid or a liar. Stupid is more forgivable, but Krugman forecloses that option every damn time.

    2. Funny, back in the 90’s when I first started reading his work, I assumed he was a Republican of the Herb Stein vintage. He didn’t seem unreasonable even in some of the dust ups that occurred then.

    3. I think getting the Nobel Prize broke his sanity. Either that, or he was replaced with a robot after he went to collect it.

      1. I think it was Bush getting re-elected that caused him to start losing it. My hypothesis is that he rationalized his descent into hackdom by telling himself that the Republicans were winning by misleading the public, so the only effective counter tactic would be to mislead the public in the other direction.

    4. It’s not Krugman’s fault, his wife writes his columns now. She even took credit for the most extreme hackery.

  14. You’ll be happy to know that Frank Rich, Al Gore, Charles Krauthammer, David Broder, and Thomas L. Friedman all made the cut

    If we cared about stupid, end-of-year lists.

  15. I nominate any random Weigel article.

    1. Another Reason alumni. Weigel, Moynihan, Cathy Young — and don’t forget Michael “Let’s Invade the Middle East” Young. What a crew. What a magazine. What a shill.

      1. Ooooooooooohhh! Buuuuuuuuuuurrrrrrrrrrrrrnnnnnnnnn.

      2. At least you have us.

      3. At least there are no fudge packers on staff. Are there?

        1. Rauch wrote some columns, but I don’t think he’s ever been on staff.

    2. Ratfucker!

  16. ooooooooohhh!


  17. Sweet- Moynihan vs Raimondo cripple fight.

    1. Best.
      Comment-section dust up.

  18. No such luck: Moynihan’s a coward. Notice how he’s disappeared: he’s probably out spending his CIA check.

    1. Everyone raise your shot glasses:

      “For a website called ‘Antiwar’…”

  19. I nominate anything involving Thomas Friedman suggesting that a pithy catch-phrase or short narrative is a solution to the nation’s woes.

  20. You fucking moron, Welch, everything you think (so to speak) is filtered through your pathetic little right-wing ideology. You are the most predictable, most boring political hack of all time. So stick your worst op-eds up your ass, you slimy little rodent-like creep And have a great New Year.

  21. How the hell did they leave me off this?

    I spent an entire column describing how I drove around to random BP service stations hassling people who were merely filling up their tanks. And the Washington Post PRINTED IT!

    So where’s my listing you myopic twits?

    1. They missed a lot of us, Court. A LOT of us.

      1. Tell me about it.

        I guess all my “the tea partiers are racist” columns just blended together and they couldn’t isolate just one for its awfulness.

        1. All those columns look the same to me.

    2. Don’t forget this one too, Mr Milloy…..-of-the-mo

  22. I nominate David Frum’s column advising Republicans to support health care reform. If only because I made Frum squirm on cspan this morning, at 47:15:…..ssionalBip

  23. These are all pretty bad, but my favorite was “The Ben Bernank”. Even if it was factually dubious, it made me laugh to the core of my dried, shriveled heart.

  24. I can’t beat that Broder one, which I think literally may be the worst op-ed column ever. I was shocked by how abosolutely awful it was when I read it, and that was taking into account that for Broder normal=terrible.

    My awful column nominations:

    Thomas Frank hates you so much he wants to inadvertently make you wealther –…..inion_main
    In addition to the plain awfulness of Frank’s mastrubatory fantasizing about underming US monetary policy to harm his political opponents, his ignorance of just about everything about monetary policy and commodity pricing results in a recommendation that would actually be a windfall for buy and hold gold investors, allowing them to get more gold for their dollar until the price shock passes, rather than a punishment.

    Cohen figures out how to make a bad Tea Party column worse –…..inionsbox1
    How do you make an anti-Tea Party column based around a thesis that has been advanced by several other equally hacky columnists despite being factually dubious fresh? Wrap it in the kind of narcissistic boomer nostaligia sure to trigger the gag reflex of anyone under 60 while using an example so grossly inapt it actively undermines your thesis even further.

    1. Thomas Frank hates you so much he wants to inadvertently make you wealther –

      OOOH, seconded. That was epically awful. I remember walking around in a daze all morning, astonished that he actually wrote it, and that the WSJ actually printed it.

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