The Further Adventures of Peggy Noonan

Anatomy of a Column


eggy Noonan swanned into the Upper East Side Bevmo to purchase a few stocking stuffers and some refreshment for Santa-baby when he slides down her chimney tonight.

In her mind she was already hearing the sleigh bells, or perhaps the merry tinkle of ice in the shaker. Christmas was everywhere!

Noonan marveled at the selection of Jamaican Rum, London Gin, and Russian Vodka (“it’s the United Nations,” she giggled to herself) and said a small prayer of gratitude under her breath about the miracle of the supply chain fixing itself, no thanks to the current president!

Noonan grabbed a shopping cart (“without a wobbly wheel, another miracle!”) and set forth to conquer the world. A couple of lowly minimum-waged, essential workers (as we used to say at the start of the pandemic when we were grateful for their service in a time of danger!) appeared in her blurry vision and they merged into one as she approached to ask them for help locating her favorite brands. “Mental note: get eyes checked.”

“I don’t work here, lady,” said the callous youth. “I don’t know what Navy Strength means.”

Noonan sized up the insolent young buck, gave him a frosty glare and declared:

“I wonder if a lot of people aren’t worrying that there’s been some quiet but fundamental shift in expectations set in place during the pandemic—that you don’t really have to work anymore, or if you don’t like your job you don’t have to stay until you get a better one; you can just leave and one way or another get the support you need through benefits, programs and government assistance.”

The manager showed up and asked if he could help. Noonan pointed at the other shopper and declared:

“People are wondering right now about the implications of the Great Resignation. More freedom, more enjoyment of life, less scrambling in a rat race—maybe that’s the right direction. But is it sustainable in the long term? Will it have some effect on what used to be called the national character? “

“Ma’am, please don’t shout at the other customers, or I’ll ask you to leave.”

“As a people we’ve always known how to grit through and suffer when history takes a turn. What will we be like when we don’t, and history gets more demanding?”

Moments later, out on the sidewalk in the rain, Noonan stared, unfocused, into the near distance. “As God is my witness,” she vowed, “I’ll never be thirsty again!”

She spied a thousand points of light, or maybe a bodega sign down the street. It was Morning in America.

(New Readers: The Further Adventures of Peggy Noonan is a sometimes feature of lo! many, many years where we parody the much-quoted Reagan hagiographer Peggy Noonan to try to understand the genesis of her Declarations column in the WSJ. We do not know if Noonan really leaves out refreshment for Santa, but to paraphrase the Great Writer herself, “Is it irresponsible to speculate? It would be irresponsible not to.” – Bacardi Lifetime Achievement Winner, Peggy Noonan, Wall St. Journal, April 2000.)

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13 Responses to The Further Adventures of Peggy Noonan

  1. Wesley Sandel says:

    Noonan is just another neo-liberal who has been dead wrong about everything for four decades but who much of the media still insist on having on their talk shows.

    Liked by 1 person

    • tengrain says:

      Noonan is the official hagiographer for the Republicans since Saint Ronnie first spotted a Cadillac-driving welfare queen way, way, way back.

      Sadly, she matters.



      Liked by 1 person

      • Redhand says:

        I’ll never forgive her for plagiarizing — i.e. without any hint of attribution, which could easily have been put in the speech — the phrases “slipped the surly bonds of earth” to “touch the face of God” from John Gillespie Magee’s poem “High Flight,” in St. Ronnie’s “Address to the Nation” after the “Challenger” disaster.

        Except in Air Force circles, Mcgee is largely a forgotten figure, a footnote to history. A reference to him in the Address would have honored a pilot poet who also died in an aviation accident while providing continuity in U.S. Aerospace history with the loss of the “Challenger” crew. But no, Noonan decided to put Mcgee’s words in Reagan’s mouth as if they were his own. A form of “stolen valor” IMO.

        It enraged me then and it still angers me.

        Liked by 3 people

      • tengrain says:

        yeah, somewhere in the noonan archives that Magee story is referenced. I think that’s the speech mentioned in her Pulitzer Prize citation, too, which only makes it worse.



        Liked by 1 person

      • Redhand says:

        I don’t know how I managed to misspell Magee’s name in the comment at one point. “Blinded by anger” I guess. But to me, the misappropriation of Magee’s words is a true mark of Noonan’s character, as in, she doesn’t have any. She’s all raw, elitist entitlement, so much so that intellectual theft is A-OK. Hardly the type with standing to castigate Bubba for a blowjob.


  2. Thanks Santa, this was exactly what I wanted! Happy Yule to you too!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Big Bad Bald Bastard says:

    When history gets more demanding? Lady, almost a million Americans are dead, within a two-year span!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Martin Pollard says:

    Dear Santa, if you can make Nooners crawl back into her Chardonnay bottle and never come out again, I promise I’ll never, ever ask you for anything else for the rest of my life, I swear.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. She is blearily aware that all those oh-so-generous benefits were turned off months ago, right?


    As a people upper class masters, we’ve always known how to beat the peasants to grit through and make them suffer when history takes a turn

    FTFH…she’s not suffered anything worse than a hangover in her life…

    Liked by 3 people

  6. YellowDog says:

    How dare the proles demand anything, especially fair wages, benefits, and respect. They should be grateful for whatever their betters give them, and say “Thank you. ma’am.”

    Just hearing her name makes me want a martini.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. moeman says:

    ‘Peggy blows !’ ~ Ronald Reagan

    Liked by 1 person

  8. ming says:

    Tis the reason I’ve been lurking around for the last 15 seasons!

    Happy Whatevers T.G.

    Liked by 1 person

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