I don’t think I’ve ever read anything by Thomas Friedman before (it’s hard to be sure about such things when I read so many articles online), so I don’t particularly have anything against him. However, Matt Taibbi’s hilarious critique of The World Is Flat actually makes me want to rush out and buy a copy just for the humor value. Taibbi starts well:

Name me a herd animal that hunts. Name me one.

This would be a small thing were it not for the overall pattern. Thomas Friedman does not get these things right even by accident. It’s not that he occasionally screws up and fails to make his metaphors and images agree. It’s that he always screws it up. He has an anti-ear, and it’s absolutely infallible; he is a Joyce or a Flaubert in reverse

It could be argued that a pack or pride is really the same as a herd, so wolves and lions (at least) would answer Taibbi’s implied question, but it’s still a great lead-in. The bit about reversal of flat vs. round is good, but then Taibbi gets bogged down a bit in the middle, but he recovers his form nicely at the end.

The walls had fallen down and the Windows had opened, making the world much flatter than it had ever been–but the age of seamless global communication had not yet dawned.

How the **** do you open a window in a fallen wall? More to the point, why would you open a window in a fallen wall? Or did the walls somehow fall in such a way that they left the windows floating in place to be opened?

Four hundred and 73 pages of this, folks. Is there no God?