Patterico's Pontifications


All Is Not Well in Sullyland

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:37 pm

At Andrew Sullivan’s blog, he has published a post that reads in its entirety:

“”Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muß man schweigen” – Ludwig Wittgenstein.


Steve translates for me:

“What we cannot speak of we must pass over in silence.”

What we cannot speak of we must pass over in silence. Let me translate from English to Moronese: I have been told in no uncertain terms to chill out from my savaging of the Palin family, and posting every single unvetted leftwing conspiracy that I get fed, or possibly lose this gig altogether.

Ace’s theory certainly has more to commend it than the nutty theories Sullivan has been floating lately about Sarah Palin. At a minimum, Ace’s diagnosis of passive-aggressive behavior on Sullivan’s part seems on target, and belies the notion that all is hunky-dory in Sullivanland — as does his other post of the day, which is titled “Mental Health Break,” and wordlessly embeds this video:

Cue Twilight Zone music. Exeunt Omnes.

P.S. No tears here, Andy. Forget Sarah Palin — Levi Johnston alone has suffered more at the hand of your million-hit-a-day mockery than any imaginary little torture you imagine you’re suffering.

P.P.S. Sullivan does explicitly deny that he has been told not to write anything in this post.

P.P.P.S. So it’s clear, I’m not insinuating Sully has been fired, necessarily. It would be more likely that he’s getting ready to stomp off in a huff, for reasons unknown. All I know is, he’s acting weird. er.

32 Responses to “All Is Not Well in Sullyland”

  1. And insulting one’s employers is generally not a very smart idea.

    Eric Blair (2708f4)

  2. How can the Atlantic go wrong by firing this guy?

    He attacked innocent people. He gave insane theories a huge audience. He’s full of hatred and dishonesty. He’s got nothing constructive to say, refuses to engage the blogosphere in discussion, and has earned a terrible reputation among nearly everybody.

    And for millions of people, Andrew Sullivan is all we know about The Atlantic. The Atlantic should find another prominent blogger, someone a little more intelligent but perhaps not too serious (an Althouse or something), and pay them to replace Sullivan.

    Juan (1a3792)

  3. If Sullivan really believes that the “Christianist” ticket of McCain/Palin is the grave terrifying threat to America that he’s claimed, then, if he’s been asked to tone it down, he should stand on principle and defy the request. He should either continue posting on the subject, or quit The Atlantic and go back to his own blogging domain. The prestige and pay he gets from The Atlantic isn’t nearly as important as saving the world, is it? If he simply clams up, it proves he was unserious about his warnings and worries.

    gp (78ea4b)

  4. I think you’re giving TNR’s management too much credit.

    Beldar (8a23eb)

  5. You don’t have to be explicitly told to “not write anything.”

    Rather, much like NBC and MSNBC, the proprietors of The Atlantic needn’t have said more than:

    “We think the Daily Dish” might be a more appropriate fit over at FireDogLake if you really want to pursue this subject in the manner in which you have done so over the last 10 days. Why not take a couple days and think about it.”

    WLS (26b1e5)

  6. Sully and Hamster – a match made in Hell.

    Dmac (e639cc)

  7. I’m also suspicious of the fact that he says “I spend PART OF THE DAY YESTERDAY ….” when his blog shows his Sunday evening post re the NYT article going up at 11:15 pm, but nothing on Monday until 1:28 pm.

    That would seem to suggest that when he got up yesterday he might have found a communication in some form from The Atlantic management wanting to discuss the situation. In a huff, he posts nothing and spends the afternoon with his guy.

    Now we get this from him today.

    Its freaking hilarious.

    WLS (26b1e5)

  8. I think he should release his doctor’s / therapist’s records since clearly that would dispel all of the vicious rumors about his silence.

    Andy (53ef0d)

  9. I can see him and Keith Olberman sucking down warm beers together muttering about “that woman,” LOL.

    Patricia (ee5c9d)

  10. I agree, Patricia…

    Their heads whipping around at each tiny noise, terrified that Rove has come to get them, or that Cheney is just behind the couch, listening… Waiting…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  11. Isn’t this an interesting meta-lesson about Palin?

    When all is silent, rumor and bullsh** abound. Sullivan going on radio silence let the media fill the void. Palin’s absence did the same thing.

    I think “Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muß man schweigen” can be read in this manner. Hard facts are absent here, so metaphysical poppycock finds a stage.

    R. Pointer (c88943)

  12. My guess is he’s headed for Alaska to stalk Palin and Charlie Gibson during the taping of this week’s ABC interview (though I doubt Sully’s gone into full Travis Bickel mode here)

    John (4a5dc5)

  13. hey dmac,

    Ever been to moonbat central before it closed shop? Are you the one that used to post there?

    peedoffamerican (389cf6)

  14. more than likely it has to do with the Atlantic opening up their site to suggestions the other day. I know a lot of former Atlantic subscribers like myself must have weighed in about how horrid Sullivan has been for their brand (him and that no talent assclown Fallows), still, it looks like the mass response must have jarred management.

    gabriel (180095)

  15. The Ludwig Wittgenstein quote? Typical Sullivan melodrama and pretentiousness. Meh.

    That Other Dana (084de8)

  16. Over at Ace’s, Ace points out that Desperate Housewives had a plotline involving a mother faking a pregnancy to protect her daughter.

    It seems like more passive aggressive drama queen antics from Mr. Milky Loads.

    Daryl Herbert (4ecd4c)

  17. Huffpo could use another shill. Or maybe Hysterical Andy could audition for ‘the View’.

    furious (56af6d)

  18. Heh..he even quoted in the German- nice touch. We feel for ya Andy, we really do.

    Guvner (9af536)

  19. Let’s not assume this just deals with the wall-to-wall Palin smears.

    Could be the Jew-baiting.

    Karl (1b4668)

  20. I think he should release his doctor’s / therapist’s records since clearly that would dispel all of the vicious rumors about his silence.

    Comment by Andy — 9/9/2008 @ 6:42 pm


    Hope lots of people are demanding that of Mr. Poor-me Passive-Aggressive. He’s richly earned it.

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  21. He’s a highly trained ass. OTOH, didn’t Michael Kelly work for the Atlantic?

    Curtis (e21caf)

  22. I’ve been reading Andrew for YEARS. I don’t always agree with him but I like his style. And I have to agree that since Palin was named he has come completely unhinged like I’ve never seen before. I’ve sent a number of emails to him and The Atlantic. I’m not one for name calling..I respect Andrew…but I couldn’t resist calling this latest incarnation Andrew “show-me-the-stretch-marks” Sullivan. He is to be congratulated for his increased traffic….he has turned into a tabloid.

    John (0fb832)

  23. Ace pointed out something I hadn’t noticed: Sullivan has a link off of Drudge. Being on Drudge’s link list is a bzillion-hit bonanza that pays off each and every day. The Atlantic doesn’t otherwise have a link.

    That probably gives Sullivan MAJOR clout…and running room.

    S. Weasel (c8b083)

  24. Sullivan, in the last two days, has been at his best. If he keeps it up I would be willing to hit his tip jar again.

    Natalie (08d9f5)

  25. Quick question: are we still considering the Enquirer a reputable news source? Because if so . . .

    SEK (072055)

  26. Given the track record of the entire media thus far, I’d say this has a better than 60% chance of being blown out of the water factually by Friday.

    Either way, let me ask you this: Are you telling me that you think the drug use of a son of the VP candidate is a bigger issue than the drug use of an actual Presidential candidate?

    Sean P (e75832)

  27. The proofs of the translation and the version of the original which appeared in the final number of Ostwald’s Annalen der Naturphilosophie (1922) have been very carefully revised by the author himself; and the Editor further desires to express his indebtedness to Mr F. P. Ramsey, of Trinity College, Cambridge, for assistance both with the translation and in the preparation of the book for the press.

    No particular reason to present them in the original German, then.


    The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.

    The right method of philosophy would be this: To say nothing except what can be said, i.e. the propositions of natural science, i.e. something that has nothing to do with philosophy: and then always, when someone else wished to say something metaphysical, to demonstrate to him that he had given no meaning to certain signs in his propositions. This method would be unsatisfying to the other — he would not have the feeling that we were teaching him philosophy — but it would be the only strictly correct method.

    Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.

    Because many of Sullivan’s claims are non-falsifiable, they are metaphysical. Being metaphysical they are senseless. We can only speak about what can be spoken about clearly.

    Thus, Sullivan, because he wishes to speak philosophically, he wishes his claims to be either true or false, must remain silent.

    Fritz (6f6601)

  28. Philosophy is, for Wittgenstein, that ladder which we climb and then discard when we’ve reached our destination.

    Fritz (6f6601)

  29. So Sullivan is back to posting. And without linking, it is amazing stuff. He feels that the “pig lipstick” business is proof enough that McCain isn’t competent to be President.

    And of Obama? Here is Mr. Sullivan’s advice:

    “My only advice to Obama: stay calm; stay cool; focus on the issues; behave like the president you want to be. They are trying to get into your head. But you are so much smarter and more decent than they are. Patience. And steel.”

    Those last two words? Eeeewww. Paging Dr. Freud. It sounds like Obama should get a restraining order.

    Time to write another suggestion to The Atlantic, I think.

    Eric Blair (2708f4)

  30. Have you noticed, as I have, that Ramesh Ponnuru, David Frum, Rick Brookhiser and John Derbyshire have been totally silent about Sarah Palin for quite a while?


    Who the hell are those people?

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  31. Eric:

    I have absolutely no desire for an Obama Presidency and suddenly I’M worried about his safety. If he wins, the Secret Service should memorize Sully’s picture and eject him on-site if he tries to get within 1000 feet of Obama.

    Sean P (e57269)

  32. Sully has a mouthful of The One.

    JD (5f0e11)

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