New York City

New York City Overwhelmed by Scourge of Illegal, Underground Dinner Parties

Who dares eat without government approval?


Stop-and-frisk soon to be expanded to look for whisks, candy thermometers.

Folks in the Big Apple are illegally eating things! The CBS affiliate in New York City today uncovered the scary, secret world of illegal, underground dinner parties.

No, this is not a joke or a parody, though it will really feel like one for the first few seconds of the clip. The news casters treat this situation with the same slightly amazed and shocked tone that they use when they cover the "underground world of raves." You know which story I'm talking about. Every local news affiliate runs one every sweeps period. Here's some of the text, but I can't really do the reading justice:

The diners are a mix of New Yorkers and tourists. CBS 2's undercover cameras captured one experience — eight people who didn't know each other eating a meal in a stranger's home.

That hostess, Naama Shafi, writes about food but is not a chef. [Reporter Tamara] Leitner found her through a website, which connects amateur foodies and professional chefs in 20 different countries with people who want unique dining experiences.

Clandestine dinner parties like the one Leitner attended have become more common in New York City. And insiders told Leitner they are completely unregulated.

Undercover cameras, y'all. If you've watched enough local news you should be able to hear the slight alarm in the reporter's voice in your head when she uses words like "stranger's home" and "completely unregulated." But I encourage you to watch the whole thing. It gets both funnier but also infinitely maddening when they bring in a consulting firm made up of retired health inspectors who now make a living advising restaurants on how to comply with the regulations they used to enforce. They weigh in on the illegality of the whole thing, and then the reporter returns to tell Shafi how illegal it is that she's having dinner parties. She could be fined $2,000.

(Hat tip to Fish)

NEXT: Koreas Set Date to Reopen Shared Industrial Park

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. …eight people who didn’t know each other eating a meal in a stranger’s home.

    Jesus effing Christ. AND ON NINE ELEVEN! Well, the illegal dinner party probably didn’t actually happen today, but you know what I mean. Bin Laden’s body isn’t even cold yet and here we have New Yorkers – who should know better – picking up his slack.

    1. what in the actual fuck. They going to regulate friends getting together for dinner? Inviting others the host doesn’t know. The new couple brings a bottle of wine (payment). Really it is only about city govt revenue.

      1. Control. It’s about control. Not about the money, about the submission.

        1. You don’t want people going around thinking they are free to do as they please without permission.

          1. The revenue is only sweetener then. I can accept this explanation.

    2. What about church, mosque, temple pot-luck dinners? Guv-mint Almighty gonna micro-Nanny-regulate the snot outta that kinda stuff-an’-stuff too?!?! Nah, they put RELIGIOUS FREEDOM way too high on the pedestal for that; Guv-Mint Almighty cannot STAND the idea of Righteous Religious types being more Righteous than Guv-Mint Almighty Itself (Blessed Be It’s Name), so religions are (mostly) left alone. Ya wanna have a private dinner?!?! Just call it a “Holy Last Religious Supper” and The Pigs will let you dine in peace? This idea brought to you by the Church of Scienfoology, see , and, yes, you ARE welcome? Peace and Love, Bros and Hos?

      1. Uhm, ok weirdo.

        Local governments (especially NYC) have been cracking down on church pot-lucks and school bake sales – requiring store-bought stuff to be sold instead of people making stuff at home and selling it. That’s in addition to requiring soup kitchens to either flat-out stop feeding homeless or giving them an ‘out’ by requiring them to have a commercial kitchen prepare the food.

  2. The closing line that clinches the utter evil that is the private dinner party:

    “The hosts say some are in it for the love of food, while others hope to …. turn a profit.”

    1. It is sad that we let the stupidest among us run our government, report our news, and teach our chillrenz….

    2. From Ten Years In The Future: “Area Teenager Arrested For Masturbating Without Wearing His Protective Helmet. Police Cite Youth’s Viewing Of Cisgendered, Heteronormative Porn As ‘Aggravating Factor’ Justifying SWAT Assault.”

      1. And at that point I expect they would only explicitly mention that the suspect survived said “arrest” in the rare case when shooting+execution did not occur.

        1. But what about the dogs?

          1. I suppose they would state “non-canine arrest” if dogs were not shot. Other wise it would be assumed that dogs were shot.

  3. So is it a good thing or a bad thing that they are not trying to pretend this is some public health or public safety issue?

    1. They are not? Did we watch the same video?

    2. They are not? Did we watch the same video?

  4. Supperclubs are way tooo SWPL for this to get any traction. Indeed, it will only add to the transgressive appeal.

    1. Remonds me of Mitterand’s ‘last supper’, a preparation of the outlawed and outlandish French cult dinner: the Ortolan.

  5. But some critics have concerns about these unregulated dinner parties.

    “It definitely falls into a gray area,” said Leon Lubarsky, owner of Letter Grade Consulting.

    Lubarsky’s staff of retired New York City health inspectors advises restaurants on health regulations.

    When asked if the underground restaurants should be regulated, Lubarsky told Leitner, “Yes, they should be regulated by the same system that regulates every restaurant in New York City.”

    Newsflash: Career regulator thinks something should be regulated.

    I can’t wait to hear about SWAT raids on “underground restaurants”. The video of yuppies and tourists being thrown on the ground and cuffed, chefs being tazed, the host’s dog being shot, eight week surveillance operations conducted on “suspected health code violators.”

    This is going to be so much fun.

    1. You know it is going to happen. Just like a raid on a speak easy. Crack a few skulls, shoot a few pets, spill some food. Take everyone to the pokey.

      1. The city just wants to wet its beak a little. Is that so wrong?

      2. Eateasies!

    2. I’m actually glad that I’m getting to watch the collapse of a functioning civilization from the front row.

      1. I suppose auto-demolition counts as a sort of collapse.

        But front row doesn’t really matter much when all the rows are on the inside..

    3. Lubarsky’s staff of retired New York City health inspectors advises restaurants on health regulations.

      They’ve taken the first good step by retiring, now they need to take the next, and fucking die already.

      /All of us

    4. “Lubarsky’s staff of retired New York City health inspectors advises restaurants on health regulations.”

      That looks kinda like some sort of racket, does it not?

      1. Indeed it does, particularly if they offer their services after a restaurant has been cited for violations, and “mediate” with their old friends at work.

        1. Isn’t that how ‘consulting’ works for every business that faces regulatory issues?

          1. But good old fashioned bribes are barbaric.

    5. Sure. Sal Culosi needs a sequel.

  6. They would have had coronaries over our barbecues. We serve beef brisket, pork shoulder, hamburgers and/or hot dogs. Random people bring potato salad, broccoli, whatever. In June we roasted a whole goat on a spit. In July we did a whole pig. Last time someone we didn’t even know before brought a wheel of homemade cheese; some of the best cheddar I ever tasted btw.

    1. Yes….but DID YOU CHARGE MONEY?!?!?!?!?

      Bitches don’t be holdin’ out on Big Pimp Daddy State!

    2. Does anyone every actually choose the hamburgers or hot dogs? I mean, with brisket and pork shoulder as options, it seems like a no brainer…

      1. Shred some pork shoulder, pile it on a hamburger. Two animals, one bun, Delicious.

        1. There’s a food truck close to where I work that offers a hamburger with slow-roasted pork on top. Add a fried egg and it is heavenly.

      2. If there are small children around, yes.

        1. If there are small children around, yes.

          You use the hamburgers to lure the children to the grill. Clever.

          This is why there are no libertarian toddlers.

          1. Ha! Thank you.

      3. Hot dogs and hamburgers make great appetizers.

        1. Hot dogs and hamburgers make great appetizers.

          I also will do other things like stuff some of them with pepperjack cheese.
          I also made some “potato bombs” (look up the BBQ pit boys on youtube), with hamburger meat and cheese, or with hot dogs.
          (Yeah, I know potatoes aren’t really on my diet, but I’m no good at being a puritan.)

      4. For the CHULDRENZ! In a good way.

      5. Does anyone every actually choose the hamburgers or hot dogs?

        Yeah, mostly kids and people who don’t eat pork or old folks who don’t chew well.

      6. Depends on who made the dogs, or what went into the grind. I’m partial to a goodly amount of neck for texture and cheek for flavor & fat content.

    3. hmm cheese, I had you pegged as a paleo but I guess I was wrong. WAPF or primal maybe?

      1. Cheese isn’t paleo?

        1. I’m pretty sure paleos are anti dairy.

          1. Oh cmon

            1. Paleos don’t do dairy, it’s ok with Primal. A friend of mine joined the cult of Crossfit. I’ve been getting an education.

              1. Yeah isn’t crossfit huge here in SoCal? As is herbalife, shit’s all snake oil if you ask me. I stick to the four mains: beans, bacon, whiskey, and lard.

              2. Paleo isn’t some monolithic cult. It’s like saying that all libertarians don’t believe in any form of government.

                1. Paleo isn’t some monolithic cult.

                  You’re right. It’s very like libertarians. Lots of people tell me, “You aren’t a ‘real’ paleo.” True, I’m closer to an Atkins Diet type. I’m also not a ‘real’ libertarian. I’m closer to Heinlein and Rand.

                  Admittedly, on both subjects, I’ve changed a lot over the years.

                  1. Here’s what I don’t understand (and this from someone who has contributed content to various Paleo websites): why would someone change their diet to mimic what people ate when life expectancy was about 25?

                    1. Here’s what I don’t understand (and this from someone who has contributed content to various Paleo websites): why would someone change their diet to mimic what people ate when life expectancy was about 25?

                      I understand your reaction. When I first heard the term “Caveman Diet” I made a joke about it involving chronic starvation. For the last nine years I’ve followed a similar diet, but based on modern research, not simply on the fact that the paleolithic-neolithic transition basically halved adult life expectancy.

                      Neolithic life expectancy at birth was 20 years, and by age 15 life expectancy was an additional 10 years, so total age 25.

                      Upper Paleolithic life expectancy at birth was 33, and at age 15, life expectancy was an additional 39 years, so total age 54, as good as or slightly better than Classical Rome.

      2. Cheese isn’t paleo?

        1. Cheese isn’t paleo?

          Paleolithic man didn’t keep dairy animals, so didn’t have milk, so didn’t make cheese. It looks like cheese only goes back 7,000 years or so.
          Cattle/dairy cultures like the Masai don’t suffer from our metabolic disease pattern, so I see no reason to avoid it.

        2. I’m off cheese and all dairy for a month doing paleo. Also mo nuts or alcohol. During fucking oktoberfest.

          Techinslly booze is out permanenty but thats not alife i want to live. Dairy fruit and nuts can be phaed back in. Nothing but meat and vegetables for month. Water and black coffee.

          It’s part of a crossfit challenge.

          The coach said there were 3 things that people think we need but really don’t. Grains was one. Government was the 2nd. I didn’t hear the third b/c of the gasps. And my yelp for joy.

          1. I’d love to know what that third thing is.

            I can do without booze and beer, butbutbut no milk? No cream? No cheese? No butter?
            Damn, I’d die without butter.

      3. hmm cheese, I had you pegged as a paleo but I guess I was wrong. WAPF or primal maybe?

        Think Atkins, except most people only know about the first two weeks (“Induction Phase”) or so of it, not the part where you taper back toward normal.

        I eat low carb, high fat. I avoid carbohydrates, especially sugar (including fruit juice) and alcohol. I eat a lot of high-fiber vegetables, more dairy than most people, and treat fruit mostly like dessert.

        1. My doc simplified it for me: Nothing above a glycemic index of 30. Period.
          I asked about booze, he shot me a look like “really?” but then said: “try to stick to straight vodka and no mixers.

          I am working on the booze part…slowly

          1. GI of 30 and under? Wow. Sounds like your diet might be tougher than mine!

  7. Seriously, if you live in NY you prob deserve the abuse.

    1. It’s not a good idea to get Episiarch mad.

      1. I adamantly never give a fuck… unless brilliance convinces me otherwise.

    2. The only thing I can figure is that New York City is full of masochists that want to be abused and told what to do.

    3. Seriously, if you live in NY you prob deserve the abuse.

      Seriously, this is a tired and unoriginal argument.

      1. Absolutelymostdefinitely.

      2. But still true.

  8. Holy shit, she’s not even a chef!!!!!!!!!

    1. That’s the point, man. The undercover capitalist saw an op, bro. No certs. No licenses. No papers. No swastika. Hence, hurray reporting to save NY sicko town from these fucking brutal slaves to freedom. NEVER in the history of food has such gay abandon been witnesses without the approvals from le’ gov fist.

    2. And she writes about food! The HORROR! This must be stopped for the children!

      Think about all the people giving each other recipes and there are no bureaucrats to see how much sodium is in it! Children dying in the streets, zombie apocalypse!

    3. You have to know there is probably sodium and maybe unhealthy-sized, sugary beverages being served at these things. Who knows if the calorie counts are even made available to the victims eating at these things, some of whom may even have unleashed tobacco smoke into the atmosphere.

      1. But don’t worry, our saviors, the government, are here to help!

        Soon, through the greatness of Obamacare, they will be able to get your shopping list real time from the NSA.

        An army of saintly government employees will be standing by, so that if you accidentally buy something with too much sodium or other things that are not good for you, the local swat team can be notified to swoop in quickly and save you!

        1. Fusion centers already do this, bra. And, you are correctomatic- my beer tab for a year will likely result in me serving time in an insane asylum by the loving peace hippie gov employees who think the planet should be a crystal kitten orgasm 24/7. Nothing against hippies- except the vast majority of the educated ones are tyrant scum from horrorville.

          1. Cash, always. Or make your own to supplement.

            1. Clearly, human who sweats gin.

  9. There is coming a day when the media, the bureaucrats, and their busy body minions will not be safe being seen in public. They will have to dig a hole and hide in it, and eat grubs and worms for sustenance. It has to happen, it has to!

  10. And insiders told Leitner they are completely unregulated.

    C’mon, they’re just fucking with us. This was sourced from The Onion.

  11. Why do people watch local news? Serious question. I end up having to watch it when either my mom or my wife’s parents are over, and it’s generally a torturous experience.

    1. “Why do people watch local news?”


      1. Well yes, there’s that too.

      2. “Why do people watch news?

        Maintaining a vague awareness of celebrity catastrophes is part of the social glue that keeps us from clubbing each other over the head and eating babies for breakfast. Whether you ingest this information by watching TV news or by reading a tabloids is beside the point, you have to do it.

        1. Watch The Soup

          1. I watch Sci. Morgan Freeman, Brian Cox, and Mike Rowe all talking about space stuff. I am actually impressed with the amount of content. I just watched a TTWH (Through the Wormhole) that has August updates on the new exoplanets. Gave a brief history from 51 Pegasi to a recently confirmed water world (sans Kevin Costner).

    2. I remember one of these things from when I was in undergrad. The teaser was something like “You’ll Never Believe Who’s Living in Your Attic!!!!!” It was true though, they did find some dude living in this old ladies attic.

    3. Weather. Then I switch to Tosh.0 or the ID channel.

    4. This, a thousand times this. Local reporters usually have a poor understanding of the rules of proper English, and their coverage of important stories is abysmal. They have zero understanding of the Constitutional or policy issues surrounding important topics, and tend to regurgitate simplistic and sometimes downright inaccurate narratives, which they then pass on to those poor schlubs who get the majority of their information from local news. Local news is good for weather forecasts and sports only. At least when the MSM mis-characterize a story, they are doing so out of malice, which I can endure much easier than outright ignorance and/or stupidity.

  12. I guess there’s nothing bad going on in NYC to report on?

    Good news, I suppose.

    1. Well, other than the total suppression of being a human being by a fool reporter…

  13. If I leave my wife alone for few a minutes in the evening the TV will be tuned in to the local new channel when I get back. The puppy dog look she gives me wore out a long time ago. There’s a future local TV news story just waiting happen.

    1. “One of these household products could be killing your entire family RIGHT NOW! Film at eleven.”

    2. If I leave my wife alone for few a minutes in the evening the TV will be tuned in to the local news channel when I get back.

      We must be married to women of the same phenotype. It would likely be the only TV she watched if it were up to her. I can’t even stand seeing a few minutes of local news once a day, but she’ll watch the morning, noon, evening and late night local shows. And none of these ever shows a damn thing but overhyped regional scare-the-moms crimes, unimportant local crap (don’t miss the artichoke fest!) and vox pop.

  14. Also, why is Scotty Love-Shack moving in on B. Linked-In’s turf?

    I sense an HnR gang war and this is going to be Shackford’s new theme song.

    You’re welcome.

    1. I opened that link in the background and then continued reading the comments. The song is now stuck in my head. I am not amused.

      1. listen to this instead

        1. Sigh…Not helpful, Thane.

          1. here this will get all that other stuff out of your head.

    2. “I sense an HnR gang war ”

      hmm shackford claims the market is making things better for animals and linnekin is defending foie gras… I’ll give a slight edge to shackford but best case scenario they kill each other in the fray.

  15. Well, I feel like a complete idiot because I just discovered I’ve been too stupid to figure out how to operate a Chinese take out carton for the first 36 years of my life.

    Apparently you’re supposed to unfold them to use as a plate for the food

    1. top comment:

      17jdenn 2 months ago

      the derections weren’t clear enough i got my dick stuck in? a toster

      1. You’re supposed to lubricate the toaster first, duh.

      2. Well, the directions did say to plug it in first. Duh…

    2. The “Chinese” take out carton is actually an American invention designed to hold oysters.

      When I was in Asia, take out food was either packed in a styrofoam box or placed in a plastic bag.

    3. Chinese takeouts are permissible by the state, man. We’re discussing illegal dinner parties… not illegal chinese take out cartons. Holy fuck the distractions!

  16. I’m shocked I tell you! Shocked!

  17. I promise to cook the most illegal New York feast in Ohio this weekend. Vastly illegal. Dick in the face unlicensed to the goddamned CORE! Seriously, smoking ANTI-New York brisket, New York Sucks ribs, plenty o’ New York Asshole cheesy taters and the most Fuck Yo Bloomberg and Yo Henchman Cole Slaw.

    Anymore, the government has become a fuck toy. It deserves a brutal fucking sadomasochistic hook in the ass with a hockey mask strapped on uber tight. Then my illegal New York feast will be sledgehammered into its fucking idiotic piehole. That’s how you treat a burgeoning dictatorship…

    1. Am I invited? I promise I am not an undercover Guv-Mint spy, I will be happy to take a lie-detector test, and I have NOT taken any Guv-Mint out-lawed lie-detector-evading-techniques-training… Where IS your “eat-easy” now, this new-era version of the “speak-easy”? Please do tell…

      1. Eat-easy. Imagine that, SQRLSY uno. In 2013 we jest about hiding the porked rib and the hammed hock. The coled slaw and the hammed burger. The roasted jowl and the brined fowl. Clearly NY is now the underbelly deserving of a good freedom spit. I’d slap that warm hickory laden svelte meatiness on a solid Ciabatta wrapped in a delightful heat of drunken stupor set on a trophy of middle finger.

        Yea, I’d love to serve my brother in freedom actually. Lotsa fuckya NY grease and whites bones stripped clean like a the NY clowns but at least you’d enjoy a fuckin good time in the remaining years of “Merican freedom.

        1. Motherfucker.

          This should have a trigger-warning for fatarses on a diet.

          Now I want to go down the street and get a couple of hotdogs wrapped in bacon and lathered with tomatoes, salsa, and guacamole.

          1. You havta hava license, dearly beloved Reasoner!!!!!!

            1. And you wanna know the worst part – no calorie and ingredient info anywhere to be seen!

          2. Remember, eating quasi-legal, bacon-wrapped street-dogs is a win for freedom.*

            *Not necessarily your cardiovascular system depending on family history of illness, genetics, lifestyle choices and other environmental factors.

            1. I broke down but – I’m only having one, with fries, and I forgot to mention the boiled beans and bacon, gratis with the dog.

              On the plus side, I’m ahead of where I need to be for the weight I want to lose. Next month will be brutal though.

          3. I had a Sonoran hot dog for the first time last month in Portland. Quite delicious. It is the first one listed under “Arizona”:

            1. Yeah that’s basically what I got.

              1. “Down the street”? Where?

                1. That good old backwater – Somerton, AZ

                  1. I miss AZ something fierce.

            2. Mmm. The Downtown or Danger Dog is usually the carrot friends use to convince me to hit the gay bars in Silverlake (fuck driving 40 minutes each way to have A beer).

              1. Yuma had (closed down or changed its name IDK which) a gay bar called ‘The Closet’.

                Always cracked me up when I drove by.

    1. Mexico hates br..own people!?

      1. Pretty much. Mexicans come in a range of shades from white-skinned redheads (seriously) to nut-brown and the darker you are the more you tend to get looked down upon by the whiter, richer segments of society.

        And they especially don’t like anyone browner than them or from further south.

        1. Yes, USA citizens seldom or never see white Mexicans, because they are the ones who have clothes to wear and food to eat. They rule Mexico, and have a good life. If Meerkuns do meet them, the assume they are from Europe, not Mexico. The Mexicans who come north are the poor, desperate ones with mostly Native American ancestry (Azteca, Mayan, Zapotec, etc.)

    2. Mexico’s Southern border is a lot shorter than ours, and their border guards are paid less. If we absolutely have to guard a border, it makes a lot more sense to do it there.

      1. It’s the calcite in the water. The whole Yucatan is a big calcite formation. The Maya are all about 4’9″ cause of that…or something. I was drinking during the tour.

      2. OHH you meant the border is shorter…gotcha. Probably due to the calcite too.

    3. It’s the NAFTA border.

  18. Germans import 5 million muslims, now facing some serious questions:

    A court in Germany has ruled that a Muslim girl cannot be excused from mixed-sex swimming lessons on the grounds of religious belief.

    But Germany’s Federal Administrative Court ruled Wednesday that it was reasonable to compromise between the girl’s religious freedom and the state’s duty to educate its citizens.

    1. Of course the deeper question is why someone is forced to take swimming lessons in the first place.

    2. And yet it didn’t work for the homeschooling parents.

      1. Hey, as it said, the state has a duty to educate its citizens.

    3. Germans import 5 million muslims, now facing some serious questions

      You know what other ethnic group caused the Germans to face some serious questions?

      1. The Romany?

      2. The East Slavs?

      3. The Romans?

  19. How do we prevent concern trolls from becoming reporters?

    1. Like the Simpsons said, “just don’t look!”

    2. Concern trolls ARE reporters, man. This is the human crop harvested from the fields of schtupid gravy that gets le’ jobs in modern media. People like Reason motherfuckers- writers and readers will never become the broad brush ‘cuz ‘Merican mainstream is a giant dripping vagina.

      1. I understand, but surely some reasonable restrictions on who can become a reporter are in order. Right now, it is completely unregulated!

  20. The world is going mad: Vladimir Putin has an Op-Ed in the New York Times. It contains the greatest final paragraph of all time.

    My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.

    Vladimir Putin is a horrible human being, but he just absolutely shit on a concept that needs to be shit on. I also like the stealth insult of starting the paragraph with a discussion of their growing relationship, and then absolutely tearing apart Obama’s speech.

    1. Seems a little like a victory lap. Bet Obama is just fuming in the WH as soon as he reads it.

    2. I dislike Obama with an intensity matching a mouthful of ghost peppers. Oh, you think I fuck with you… Try it, bitches and then shit without the asslips feeling rather horrid.

      Anyhoo, Putin. Yea, Putin is an Obama, Obama is a Bush. 2013 leaders seem to fucking scumbags. Life for my evolutionary genes in the form of offspring is truly fucked.

      1. It’s almost as if you are saying that power seeking murderuous thieves are similar, no matter the party affiliation, or country they seek to dominate. I’m sorry, it sounds right, but goes against all I’ve learned.

    3. Personally, my bet would be that Putin is secretly attracted to Obama, and all the recent anti-homosexual crap in Russia is just Putin desperately trying to deny it.

      1. Type “Is Putin” into a google search bar and you’ll find that’s not an uncommon conception. He’s had rumors that he indulges in teh geh follow him for quite a while.

    4. … but he just absolutely shit on a concept that needs to be shit on.

      I don’t agree. I think America is an exceptional country. It is the first country in human existence founded on the notion that the government exists solely to protect the rights of the individual. And as far as I can tell, it is the only nation in history that really owes its existence to that notion. When the nation is true to that principle, it prospers. when it abandons it in favor of “noble ideals” or “grand crusades” it suffers.

      1. I don’t agree. I think America is an exceptional country.

        Putin didn’t say America was or wasn’t an exceptional country he said, “It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation.”

        And he is correct in criticizing the idea that America is an exceptional country because it has the correct citizenry.

  21. those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy

    Tell us more Mr. Putin about democratic traditions.

    But I agree with you, Irish, I like his take on American exceptionalism, I just wish it were coming from a less hypocritical speaker really anybody else.

    1. Isn’t Putin fairly popular in Russia? His record towards ideological and religious minorities is terrible, but that’s not inconsistent with democracy.

      1. You are technically correct, but when I read “democratic traditions” I see implied the suite of post-Enlightenment freedoms we associate with modern Western democracy, not just the electoral system. That’s likely the baggage I’m bringing to my reading of the article; I’d be curious to know others’ gut interpretation of that phrase.

        1. … when I read “democratic traditions” I see implied the suite of post-Enlightenment freedoms

          That’s because you’re a hippy. I see a a mob whose hunger for free shit and persecuting their neighbors can’t be satiated.

          1. Well, gunpowder mixed with cocaine is interesting, butt nekid.

          2. That’s dark, but probably more in line with what Putin meant.

            1. I didn’t mean to call you a hippy, I’m sorry.

              1. It’s ok, I had long hair once and have a green thumb. It only stung because it’s a little true.

      2. His record towards ideological and religious minorities is terrible, but that’s not inconsistent with democracy.

        Shhhh. We’d prefer to keep that particular skeleton in the closet.

        1. Shhhh. We’d prefer to keep that particular skeleton in the closet.

          ONE MAN, ONE VOTE*!

          *to take your shit and throw you in a cage, your results may vary

          1. Do results vary in the NY, Naked? Not sure it isn’t so… Not sure…

            1. The “results may vary” line was only put in to give false hope to the loserdopians and anarchists. Can’t have a bunch of gun totin’ freaks thinking there’s no hope.

  22. Oh my God. Obama’s approval rating drops to 38% among all adults.

    The numbers that jump out to me though:

    Among all adults: strongly approve 14%, strongly disapprove 39%.

    Among registered voters: Strongly approve 18%, strongly disapprove 42%.

    1. It’s getting to Bush levels now. I can’t wait to see how low they’ll go.

    2. I was desperately hoping for this to happen before the end of this first term, before they managed to shove through Obamacare. Glad it at least finally happened now though.

  23. My hope for humanity is improved after reading the comments on the page for the report. I can hardly find a single comment that isn’t outrage at the idea that this is somehow against the law. But I think this guy put it most succinctly:

    Archduke Ferdinand ? 5 minutes ago
    Good God, crawl out of our *ssholes.

    1. In a dramatization of the libertarian struggle, I want that to be the climactic line, signifying that libertarianism has taken hold. The villain, a rising politician or bureaucrat, goes on a horrifying rant about all that he must do for our own good. After a beat, some nobody in the crowd says dryly:

      “Good God, crawl out of our assholes.”

      1. What you’ve written sounds like a prospective scene in the next Batman flick.

      2. I guess that’s the tl;dr version of Galt’s speech for the Twitter generation.

  24. OT: Obama Tells Congress “Party’s Been Cancelled”

    Lawmakers on Capitol Hill received a blast e-mail on Wednesday evening that was curt and blunt:

    Good evening,

    The 2013 Congressional Picnic has been cancelled. The president and Mrs. Obama look forward to welcoming members of Congress and their immediate families at the Congressional Holiday Ball in December. More details regarding the Congressional Holiday Ball will follow at a later date.

    Thank you,
    White House Office of Legislative Affairs

    The Congressional picnic, which had been scheduled for a week from Wednesday, is a lavish affair, with glad-handing and backslapping accompanied by live music. It is a moment when even the Louie Gohmerts of the world can put down their swords and fraternize with the enemy.

    Not this year. In June, the picnic was postponed because of scheduling conflicts. This time, it was canceled because White House officials thought Congress would be consumed in the fight over a resolution authorizing military force in Syria.

    How dare you threaten not to give me my war against Syria! Fuck you guys! Their will be no party!

    Also, a sample of idiots:

    name with held for obvious reasons usa
    the entire congress should be cancelled.

    Let me refer you to Charles I Stuart, another Head of State who believed himself above the law, and disbanded the legislature when they wouldn’t give him his way.

    1. Wait a minute. Why is the WH running the supposed Congressional Picnic?

      1. The Imperial Presidency strikes again!

      2. I guess this means that separation of powers is no more?

      3. Well, it is the White House Congressional Picnic (but we don’t have a penny left to cut).

        The emperor must f?te his nobles from time to time, to display his wealth and majesty.

  25. Holy shit, it’s going to get harder to parody the nanny state-fellating busybodies, they really will stop at nothing.

    All this rain in Colorado…must be related to all the evaporating progressive tears. Delicious tears of unfathomable sadness – you outspent us 4-1 and still fucking lost, now go fuck yourselves.

  26. I’ve been working a lot lately. I check in with Reason before I go to sleep and I read this shit.

    I really am starting to hate people. Good night all.

    1. Hate of the dying civ makes the lids heavy, reason prawn. Sleep well midst yo nightmares.

  27. Pretty soon in Bloomberg’s New York you’ll need a license to have a dinner party with more than 6 guests.

    1. NY is a conclave of negative foodery. The fatback, perhaps, that sent the bright scurrying…? I jest. The bright don’t live in NY- they barely survive.

    2. Nope. Duck confit will be fine, just don’t make burgers and soda.

    3. Pretty soon after that, you won’t be able to eat alone without a license. Anyone unable to afford the licensing fee will starve.

    4. Nope. Duck confit will be fine, just don’t make burgers and soda.

  28. Two of the last three Popehat posts are about Pax Dickinson, the self-described brogrammer and former Business Insider CTO whose unPC Twitter account was discovered by Gawker. The authors and commenters are divided about the meaning of “Tech managers spend as much time worrying about how to hire talented female developers as they do worrying about how to hire a unicorn.”

    What say you? Evidence of hiring discrimination?

    1. So far this situation looks totally retarded. Thanks Gawker, as always.

    2. Not necessarily. It sounds like he’s saying they’re rare, not that he wouldn’t hire a talented one if he could find her.

      Sounds sexist. Not evidence of hiring discrimination.

      1. So far, everyone that seems like a bro (Clark, me, you(?)) has the same reaction. Everyone who seems anti-bro (Ken, liberal commenters) interprets it as “no women are talented developers, won’t hire.” I’m interested in this for two reasons: a) the side that usually, very vocally, wants controversial statements to be understood “in the proper cultural context” has no desire for a mansplaining and 3) The psychologist Lee Jussim claims that he’s been searching the academic stereotype literature for 20 years in search of a single person who believes stereotypes apply to every person in the demographic. It continues to amaze me how many people assume this must be a Huge Problem despite the complete lack of evidence.

      2. It sounds like he’s saying they’re rare

        Rare like unicorns are rare? There’s a word for something THAT rare: “nonexistent”.

        1. Right. He should have said, “Tech managers spend as much time worrying about how to hire talented female developers as they do worrying about how to hire a Flores Scops-owl.”

          Have you considered a career as C-level twitter editor?

    3. I’d suggest that shaming people in very large, very modern social settings is a superstimulus. In the ancestral small-tribe environment it feels good to be the dealer of a joke and not the brunt. It feels good to be the social arbiter and not the social pariah. It feels good to be the cool kid and not the nerd. ?and, in the iterated version of the game, where a given person is on the shaming end every now and then and on the shamed end every now and then, everything works out.

      We’ve got the social process wired into our heads, and it works well when we’re in small groups, but it can be destructive when we’re in larger groups. Calling out the hunter in a pack of 150 who took more than his fare share of meat is one thing. Calling out the miller who took more than his fare share of flour in a village of 1,000 is another.

      ?and calling out the Jewish moneylenders as taking “more than their fair share” in interest in a modern nation of 50 million, in an age of newspapers, radio, and movies (or calling out the Tutsi merchants as taking “more than their fair share” of the economy) is another

      This is from Clark’s recent post, and it’s a really good way to think about this phenomenon of the perpetually aggrieved activist.

      1. Despite some really fundamental differences (Clark’s Catholic and anarchist), I find him one of the most consistently interesting bloggers.

    4. Evidence of hiring discrimination?

      Yes. I guarantee you a lot of larger companies will bend over backwards to hire a minority/female software developer.

    5. Did Ken sleuth out some lookist youtube commenter again?

      1. On one hand I think “cosmotarian” isn’t granular enough to have much utility for differentiating libertarian-leaning individuals. OTOH, Ken White.

  29. “They weigh in on the illegality of the whole thing, and then the reporter returns to tell Shafi how illegal it is that she’s having dinner parties. She could be fined $2,000.”

    I bet New York’s limousine liberals didn’t see that one coming home to roost.

    The problem with nanny statism is that you eventually run out of other people to nanny.

    1. “First me, then you.”

      1. Acutally it’s first you, the hopefully not me.

  30. Just imagine! At any given moment, a completely unregulated journalist might be writing stories about things happening in the world! When will this irresponsible state of affairs at CBS be addressed, so that we can all be safe?!?

  31. Chess Champion Garry Kasparov:

    “I hope Putin has taken adequate protections. Now that he is a Russian journalist his life may be in grave danger!”



    Must sleep, early flight. In morning I expect to see a Putin cooking column in Le Monde & Putin football column in El Pais.

  32. The Pope’s new wheels

    1. Contest: come up with the best bumper stickers or vanity plates for the Pope’s car

      1. Pope’n ain’t easy
        Popes up, hos down
        Keepin’ the Pope hand strong today
        I got 99 problems but a Methodist ain’t one
        Jesus fish in Papal regalia eating a boring protestant Jesus fish

        1. N-FAL-IBL.

          I Break for Nuns

          Homk if You Love Jesus. Text While Driving If You Want to Meet Him

          1. My other keys are St. Peters

            Jesus saves…with Geico car insurance!


            If he buys an American electric car he could always stick “Deus” by the model name for “Deus Volt”

            1. My other keys are St. Peters


      2. My other car is the Popemobile

      3. Pope My Ride

      4. HT – NDSNRF

    2. I want to see the Popemobile in a GTA game.

      “Grand Theft Auto: Vatican”

      1. “Grand Theft Auto: Pope Fiction”

  33. Putin saves his silly ass and then he does this:
    “White House: Russian prestige on the line in Syria”
    Check your fave AP reseller, but it’s as obnoxious as shreek’s constant ‘Buuuuuuuuuush!’
    What an idiot.

  34. Somewhat off-topic: recently got a hold of Xbeeriment Black Force One. It’s an ‘upgrade’ of their ‘Barack’, appropriately and ironically an ‘Imperial’ Stout. The Danish brewers got that one right.
    But interestingly, that had to change the name from Barack to #44 because the US Govmint said that they needed express permission from the POTUS himself to import it under the name Barack.
    So I guess Mr. Obama owns the name, Barack. I suppose a trademark logo is required.

    1. If they challenged it they would win – the NSA keeps losing court challenges whenever someone actually stands up to their bullying regarding use of their crest.

    1. what did I just watch

    2. Warty calls that Thursday.

    3. Also, ‘Bicycle Thieves’ is on TCM, so the Italians are doing a fine enough job of depressing me.

  35. That hostess, Naama Shafi, writes about food but is not a chef.

    So, she’s not even a licensed food journalist. Jesus, this entire situation is a hotbed of untaxed, unregulated activity. The mind reels.

  36. I watched the whole fucking video now I’m off to the vomitoriam. The very last line:

    Some of the hosts say they are in it simply for the love of food, while others hope to ACTUALLY TURN A PROFIT.

    Also Naama Shafi is a total babe.

    1. Ah I see this was already discussed, of course. Damn you H&R and your time-zoneism othering.

      1. Don’t forget their nocturnal othering. Those of us with “alternative schedules” are more than a little put off by their arrogant and solarcentric assumption of diurnalism.

        1. I see a class action suit in our future…

  37. Freedom means asking permission and taking orders.

  38. B-b-but. The children. Roads. Somalia. We…must…regulate!

  39. Seeing the headline of this article I thought the people were eating endangered animals like polar bear or bald eagles. Maybe human cadaver parts. Just regular stuff? BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Apparently no one from that pathetic news station has ever been to a party where a host had food and alcohol and asked for $10-20 a person. Better get SWAT teams ready to bust up Super Bowl parties this coming year.

    Then again, in my city they were requiring permits to feed homeless people. I’ve bought booze and sandwiches for homeless. I could have been fined for doing so. Big Brother never retreats.

  40. I still think it’s nonsense, but the story is leaving out a key factor in this. This isn’t just somebody hosting a dinner party because they want to share good food with good friends. It’s somebody running a business they are getting paid for.

    As I said I still think it’s nonsense, but that requires a belief that the government already regulates way too much and the entire industry should be free of it. One cannot think health codes and such are a good idea, but think it’s okay for these people to ignore them.

  41. eight people who didn’t know each other eating a meal in a stranger’s home.

    The HORROR!!

    Clandestine dinner parties like the one Leitner attended have become more common in New York City. And insiders told Leitner they are completely unregulated.


    People voluntarily gathering together, with strangers, for a high-end meal that isn’t regulated by bureaucrats in suits who have probably never set foot in a restaurant kitchen they weren’t regulating.

    Next stop: Somalia.

  42. This is hilarious! NY is way out of line here. In the South, these dinners are hosted by churches all the time. They’re called “Progressive Dinners”. Ironic name, huh? You ante up a fee and travel around from house to house to eat a different course at the host’s house. The money usually funds programs at the church that sponsors this dinner. As far as I know, the dinners are completely unregulated.

  43. If you are making money on this, or any activity for that matter, the government-mafia needs to get its “protection” money cut.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.