As Steve Benen notes, pretty much everything is “Obama’s Watergate” to Republicans: going on vacation, eating a hamburger, brushing his teeth, and he possibly may have farted once HISTORY’S GREATEST MONSTER ahem sorry. This week’s Watergate, according to the American Spectator, is…Media Matters.
They’re comparing the paranoid President Nixon’s private investigators hired to find anything they could on his political opponents to…a media watchdog group. See, a media watchdog group that calls out Republicans on their lies HAS to be working for President Obama, who HAS to have an “enemies list” just like Nixon! Q.E.D.!
And former Reagan official Jeffrey Lord spends 8 pages on this tortured logic. Well, really, he spends 5 and a half pages rehashing Watergate itself, and the rest on that bastion of journalistic freedom, Tucker Carlson, and his hit jobs on Media Matters at the Daily Caller.
Media Matters head David Brock wrote a book: The Fox Effect: How Roger Ailes Turned a Network into a Propaganda Machine. And of course, the Obama White House HAD EVERYTHING TO DO WITH THE BOOK because of course the CIA and the FBI and the NSA and every other intel agency in DC had to have illegally mind-controlled the patriots at FOX to say bad things about the President because…umm…CHICAGO WAY! WHITE HOUSE THUGS! KENYAN TYRANT! No way these guys are journalists who cracked the unknown secret that FOX News doesn’t like Democrats!
Investigations are needed! Questions must be asked! And Jeffrey Lord says the President must be shamed into resignation because this is the WORST THING A PRESIDENT HAS EVER DONE. Just the fact that Media Matters exists is central to his point! It is irresponsible not to speculate!
Seriously. 8 pages of this. It’s hysterical. There’s Obama Derangement Syndrome, and then there’s American Spectator, where tinfoil is a way of life.
They need a Sassy Gay Friend to sit them down and tell them, “look at your life, look at your choices.” Too bad they’re homophobic creeps.
The smoking gun appears to be some context-free, third-person reported remark of some guy that works at Media Matters, presumably referencing the fact that International Consolidated Evil Murdoch Minions Inc. got nailed following people, hacking voicemails, etc. and saying they same thing all of us probably did: [Tacit: Hey, if they think its OK,] we should do it to them.
Tip to Spectator guy: the reason Segretti, G.Gordon Liddy, etc. got in trouble is not because they made occasional offhand remarks about doing things like this. It’s because they actually did them.
So….is (fill in name of any president) Derangement Syndrome going to become the norm phrase for every president going forward? Can we come up with something catchier? ODS? Because its….”odious”? Thats the best we got?
From the Spectator article:
And we’re done. Nobody who still uses AOL has anything useful to say.
If only they used aluminum foil, they might have a clue.
Didn’t David Brock used to be on staff at the American Spectator?
Belafon (formerly anonevent)
It sounds like they chew on tin, not wear it. With fillings.
As someone said yesterday, there is something that really bothers them about this president. I hope someday they tell us what it is.
The article gets pretty funny at the end. Two lines:
Yes, “incredibly” is the right word. And
Tucker Carlson. Right.
‘American Spectator’ magazine has been around for a while and has always had the ‘rich guy paying the bills’ aura about it. “Well, Jeffrey, go write that takedown of Media Matters, and then get my suit from the dry cleaners. OK?”
@Jacobi: Aw, man, now I want to know if he has one of those phones with just the ten giant buttons for the digits and an on/off.
So according to my FB feed, another Republican friend of mine has given up on the race. I don’t think he’ll ever switch sides, but he’s announced that he’s just not bothering this year.
I suppose I should feel sorry for him.
@Jacobi: Okay, okay, I’ll switch. But I hate gmail, and I’m none too fond of yahoo. What do you recommend for free email?
@honus: Yep. He said he was never fact-checked on anything until he started writing for other publications. Which is how we got The Real Anita Hill.
He also noted that in the crop of conservative pundits who came of age in the 80s and after, there were no intellectuals or idea people – like the Buckleys and Kristol Srs. of the previous era. And referred to Jonah Goldberg as Lucianne’s “insipid son.”
So they’ve got a bone to pick with him, even more than with others, because he was once one of theirs.
Every administration has their scandals. Some more than others, but each has their share. So it’s quite remarkable that the Obama administration has been virtually scandal-free. For those on the right who have been searching nonstop to find anything on President Obama, this must be a bitter pill to swallow.
It can not be stressed enough, 2 Republican voters sitting the election out is just as good as getting one to vote for Obama instead of the Republican that they always vote for.
OT, but not really: I got sent a chain email from my sister-in-law–a highly educated woman–that talks about some woman who saved Jewish kids’ lives during WWII has been rejected the Nobel Peace Prize, losing one year to Al Gore, and then again to Obama–FOR HIS WORK WITH ACORN!
If I asked my SIL if she had a problem with black people, she’d vehemently say no, and be offended at the charge. But she’ll spread around a chain email that basically might as well just call the President the N word. After all, that’s the subtext.
@rob!: The desperation smells slightly nutty….
@deep: I do feel kind of sorry for my Republican friends, because they feel so lost and betrayed by this pack of crazy assholes.
Then, of course, it passes, and I laugh.
@Punchy: There really is no true Obama Derangement Syndrome. In this case it is the syndrome known as:
There is a blackity, blackity, negro, blackity, blackity, ni**er, blackity, blackity, ni**er in the white house.
Oh, it’s completely nutty. It’s amazing and sad to me how generally normal, okay people suddenly become race-baiting Michael Scotts once there’s an African American president.
@rob!: Not to mention apparently trapped in 2009…
And this is exactly why my fellow liberals have lost so much over the last 30 years. You do realize that the “pack of crazy assholes” is a self-inflicted wound that your GOPer friends gave themselves? Your Republican friends who have turned St. Ronnie into an equal of their god and his son? Your Republican friends who have encouraged and courted and enabled every religious nut on the furthest edges of religious nuttery? Your Republican friends who cheered a stolen election and called those who screamed foul traitors and enemies of America? Your Republican friends who elevated the Deserting Codpiece to savior-like levels when he lied us all into a war and put America into the same torturing business as the Spanish Inquisition? Your Republican friends who would cut taxes on the 1% to nothing even if it means their own families go hungry?
I realize I am taking my frustration with this sort of thinking out on you and I apologize for seeming to blame you. But too many liberals do this and we have got to stop it. We have to quit feeling sorry for people like this who are only too happy to see us and our allies crushed and destroyed, regardless of the fallout to themselves, the country, and the world.
it truly KILLS them that Barack Obama understands quite clearly that he’s a Black man in America, and has made sure that his team is about as clean as can be.
IT KILLS THEM.
Jeffrey Lord is also the guy who said that Shirley Sherrod’s relative wasn’t lynched because a sheriff did it so that’s okay. The man isn’t what you’d call an intellectual heavyweight.
West of the Cascades
@Napoleon: And if they stay home for the Presidential race, they don’t vote for the undercard in the House, Senate, and state races. And we need depressed GOP turnout because the GOP has been oppressing voting rights for likely Democratic voters.
@geg6: I also told that guy that Ron Paul said we shouldn’t have fought WWII. “No, he really did, look it up.” I’d rather engage someone and make a change. We can bitch until we’re blue in the face on our blogs, but it won’t make any difference.
Also, it’s entirely possible to feel empathy for someone without doing anything to enable them.
Nope. He is either a bigot or willing to enable those who are.
@jibeaux: Although I have just thought of something a little more desperate than that. You know that awful, unfunny cartoon, Mallard Fillmore? That cartoon was, very recently, trying to make hay out of Biden saying, before he was the VP nominee, that Obama was clean and well-spoken or whatever dumbass thing it was that he said. I mean, ok. So you’re talking about 2008. You’re talking about Biden saying something inartful about Obama, which Obama is clearly not that damn upset about because he subsequently picked him to be his veep candidate. I mean, the best possible spin on whatever the hell that argument is, is that Joe Biden is racist against black people, ergo a vote for Barack Obama is vote for racism against black people. VICTORY!
I’d agree with this if it was 15-20 years ago. I honestly don’t think it’s possible with anyone still left in the GOP. They are who we think they are and nothing you can possibly say will ever sway them. They may act rational around you and seem to consider other view points, but I can guarantee that the minute your back is turned, they are pointing and laughing at you and your “facts.”
I have given up on them. The people we should be working on aren’t GOPers. It’s the Indies. That’s where I’m concentrating my efforts. They are basically lazy people (probably why they are Indies) and don’t want to make a lot of effort with politics. But you can give them facts and they will accept them if properly attributed. You can reason with them. They can be educated. That’s the sweet spot where more liberals should be working this election season.
Sargent Pepper's Spray
David Brock wrote a book. You know who else wrote a book? Exactly!
its Conservative Magical Thinking.
they honestly believe that if they can get rid of Obama everything will back to the way it was before, when America was a superpower and the America middle class was the overclass of the world.
Before Peak Oil and social media.
Want to understand republicans, juicers?
First you have to understand evolution.
But ask a “reasonable Republican”: both sides do it! A fire hose and a sqirtgun both shoot water, so they’re exactly the same thing!
@Samara Morgan: You assume that they want or care about an American middle class.
Shawn in ShowMe
Which is why I don’t buy this “George Romney was an honorable man” narrative. What’s honorable about aligning yourself with bigots and sociopaths? We don’t need “I was brainwashed” mea culpas. We need for people to act on principle when it could actually do some good.
What’s with all the hating on tin foil? It’s inexpensive, very useful and not hazardous at all.
Tin foil is a great means to shield electronic circuits from radio signal interference. Perhaps that’s why you hate it so?
Or perhaps it’s the fashion industry, using tin foil for all sorts of flashy and interesting clothing?
My haberdasher swears by tin foil.
@Howlin Wolfe: No! Not aluminum foil! That’s a liberal plot, you must use real tin foil. Let’s look at the facts: The abbreviation for aluminum is Al. Really? Al as in Gore? And the atomic number is 13! Need I say more?
@Shawn in ShowMe:
I don’t know nearly enough about George Romney, but it seems to me that back when he was a politician, Republicans weren’t automatically bigots or sociopaths.
Hurricane Katrina called. She’s offended she’s been downgraded beneath Watergate.
Democratic Nihilist, Keeper Of Party Purity
@Shawn in ShowMe: Historical perspective is needed. Pre-1964, the party of “bigots and sociopaths” was the Democratic Party.
George Romney fought a war for the soul of the Republican party, as to whether they’d go down the path that Goldwater had laid out for them or whether they’d decide to stay part of mainstream society and make sure the bigots and the sociopaths were homeless forevermore. He lost.
Speaking of tinfoil being a way of life, check out this latest crazy crap spewed by Rick Santorum. These idiots swallow the most amazing amount of bullshit on a daily basis.
Isn’t it interesting how quite a number of Reagan’s former advisers have seen the light and come to the conclusion that the modern Republican party’s tactics, policies and beliefs are destroying the country. Bruce Bartlett and David Stockman are just two examples I can think of off the top of my head.
Then there are a few who have probably gone further off the deep end… although most of them, like this guy, seem to be more of the magical racist variety. I think it’s possible to imagine in 1979-80 that a reasonable person might have thought that voodoo trickle-down economics of the laffer curve would work. Anyone who was there and has seen that its made the country decline for 30+ years and still goes along with it is obviously a hopeless case.
This fucking asshole is visiting the office where I work today. Just watched him pass the coffee machine, 20 feet away.
Somehow, I didn’t get an invite to his townhall meeting (only selected senior management will attend). Which is too bad, because I have some great questions for him about his voting record…
@Democratic Nihilist, Keeper Of Party Purity: And I’m sure he’s on whatever the Mormon heaven planet is called right now, looking down on his son and perhaps wishing like hell that the Mormons didn’t take your every last relation in on planet heaven.
@Shawn in ShowMe:
Sorry, but George McGovern actually was an honorable man at a time when there actually were honorable Republicans. I’m old enough to remember him and I can tell you that it was so.
Romney actually didn’t align himself with the bigots and sociopaths. He condemned the far righties of the time like the Birchers. He famously started an income tax in Michigan. He was a big supporter of the Civil Rights Act and movement. As Secretary of HUD under Nixon, he tried hard to implement more housing for low income families and for open housing in the suburbs (effectively, a desegregation program). He was one of the good guys, as much as a Republican can be.
As for the brain washing remark, it was in regard to how he was misled by the military brass as what the situation in Vietnam was. He ended up anti-war in regard to Vietnam.
He really didn’t deserve the son he got.
The thing is Fox, via Roger Ailes, really is a direct descendant of Nixon and by making blatantly false, divisive partisan propaganda an acceptable form of ‘news’, they really have undermined democracty in America. Media Matters does a tiny, tiny bit to compensate for that, so it’s not surprising they need to be attacked and taken ‘out of the mainstream.’
amen. crush those fuckers like bugs.
yeah, i’ve stopped feeling sorry for the fuckers too. if your best friend develops a heroin problem you feel sorry for him. after 5 years’ worth of seeing him fucking up, dealing with him breaking into your house and stealing shit to hock for junk, bailing him out and walking up to your house to find your car is missing you stop feeling sorry for him.
Shawn in ShowMe
I respectfully defer to my elders on the matter of George Romney. Thanks for the history lesson.
Peak wingnut is a fucking mirage. It keeps shifting furthah and furthah.
Back when he was a polititian more Republicans voted for things like the civil rights bills then Dems.
@Shawn in ShowMe:
Jeebus. I actually called him George McGovern, not Romney, in my first sentence. Let’s just call that a senior moment. ;-)
@Soonergrunt: not my point.
before Peak Oil, the free market functioned just fine….for Americans. Americans were the overclass of the world.
now under resource starvation, the free market has begun to cannibalize the middle class. the free market is WAI, jobs flow to cheaper labor like china and india.
republicans dont explain to their base that this is the natural evolution of a market-based global economy, they pretend that getting rid of Obama will fix the middle classes problems.
its a scam.
And you are correct….republicans dont care about the middle class– they just care about their votes.
And then Goldwater came along and said hey, we like bigots! We want all the bigots! And the bigots (for the most part, anyway) left the Democratic Party and that’s how we got the GOP of today. Lesson over. LOL!
@amk: there is no peak wingnut.
there is only the Wingularity.
and we are already at the knee of the curve.
The primo justification offered by conservatives for their underhanded actions (when they try to excuse them) is always “we’re certain Democrats are doing this even though we have no evidence, so we have no choice but to do it ourselves or they’d have an unfair advantage!”
gabble gabble one of us.
@Democratic Nihilist, Keeper Of Party Purity:
Eh, I know what you’re getting at, but you really need to backdate that to before Joe McCarthy gave his infamous speech at Wheeling, WV.
After reading that and getting a headache from trying to figure out how you get a relationship between the activities detailed in the Watergate transcripts and the fact poking done by modern day Media Matters, it occurred to me that Sammie Morgan comes up with more lucid prose on a daily basis.
Then I had a sad, because this was the sort of word salad that all those brilliant Reagan operatives came up with routinely, and which helped create the atmosphere of confusion that led me to vote for the mendacious, senile old fuck both times around.
@geg6: IMO, the guy I was talking about is more what the tea partiers would call a RINO. Where I live there’s a long tradition of Republican moderates (think Jim Jeffords) and a lot of people who are just waking up to the fact that the party has left them behind. It’s sad and frustrating that it’s taken so long, but there it is. If all I do is help convince them to stay home, that’s fine with me. I have to live and work here, I’m not going to scream ‘bigot’ or whatever any time someone tells me they’re a Republican. It’s not going to get me anywhere.
The truly bizarre thing is that wingnuts are always talking about a Watergate or a Katrina for whatever Democrat needs to be taken down, constantly keeping those scandals current and reminding everyone that each was a really big deal. For crying out loud, Watergate happened before quite a few of the current wingerati were born.
Democrats never look for “Bush’s Whitewater” because we know that whole thing was bullshit. The last serious scandal involving a Democratic president was… what? About the only one that ever gets talked about is JFK sleeping with a lot of women, and that’s just scandalous (tinged with envy), not an actual scandal.
They just don’t seem to realize they’re reminding everyone that Republican presidents are often incredibly corrupt, and Democratic ones aren’t.
I agree with what you said about engaging indies and not wasting time on the goopers, but we need to be careful about how we characterize Indies. I think there are any number of reasons for Indy folks to be Indies: Politics bores them and they don’t connect public policy to their daily lives; some may not feel qualified and look for guidance from people who do follow politics, either people like us or the Rethugs; some might prefer after a long day of work to spend time with their kids and watch a ball game or a reality show. Calling them lazy or treating them with condescension isn’t going to reach them, and I’m sure that’s not how you would approach them geg6, but I think we need to be mindful not to insult. Just saying. But like I said about reaching the righties, you’re spot on.
Democratic Nihilist, Keeper Of Party Purity
@Chris: It’s well to remember that before Johnson’s civil rights legislation, that the Democratic Party was an unstoppable juggernaut because it combined both working-class populism and cross-burning racism. Everyone save the Southern Democrats knew that was an arrangement that was going to have to come to an end sooner or later, and sure enough, it was a Southern Democrat who ended it.
Johnson famously said when signing his legislation that the Democratic Party was going to lose the South for a generation. He was, in retrospect, wildly optimistic. I also suspect he thought racism would die on the vine, and that the Republican party, having been the party that had fought against racism for over a hundred years, would not give those pissed-off Southern Democrat racists a home. He never saw Reagan coming, I guess.
So now the GOP is an even more unlikely coalition of unredeemable racists, lunatic apocalyptic Christian cultists, and their traditional coalition of big-business suckups, and it is currently splitting on all three lines in this primary. We live in some interesting times. It will be worth it if the lunatic fringe can be split off from the GOP and rendered impotent.
YES. Identifying as Republican is a choice, and one that is affecting me and everyone around me. I have Republican friends, but if it ever happens that the policies they vote for ruins their life- that shit will feel good and I plan on savoring it. If you can’t revel in the destruction of your enemies, then really, what’s the point?
Well, I guess we now have been given insight as to Issa’s next HUKA investigation.[House Un-American Kenyon Activities.]
Villago Delenda Est
The American Spectator is utter garbage. It’s a journal of fiction. They have invented “stories” out of whole cloth. R. Emmet Tyrell is as much a “journalist” as Julius Streicher was.
@Persia: Yeah, I’m with you. Tribalism is a very strong thing. Yes, it’s true that they enabled some horrible things, but the ones who can still be turned are the ones who wouldn’t have done that if they accepted that’s what they were doing. I’ve got a couple of prospects myself.
We continue to have major battles for votes to fight, and some sacrifices have to be made. I’m willing to sacrifice condemning individual Republican voters for the actions of the Republican Party if it gets us another vote or a Republican no-show.
Nah, you should get them to vote for that black guy. That’s is the only way they can get back their party that was.
@Samara Morgan: you mean, we hit the saturation point shortly ? I doubt it at this point.
Well, technically, the GOP had its assortment of bigots for much longer than that. As a party I think they stopped caring about civil rights pretty much the moment Reconstruction ended. But they still kept a liberal, civil-rights contingent during that time, and meanwhile, the Democrats were usually worse.
We also shouldn’t confuse independents and moderates/centrists. Independents just means people who won’t affiliate with one of the two major parties, and a ton of these people are that way not because they’re in the center but because the Democrats/Republicans aren’t left/right wing enough for their tastes.
Moderates and centrists, that’s something else (and I agree that it’s what we need to be appealing to).
This should be celebrated.
The Right has a big, stinking, steaming pile of NUTHIN to run on, so they are making shit up. Solyndra. Media Matters. Freedom of Religion. All manufactured bullshit.
Fox News a propaganda arm of the Republican Party? Who knew?
I don’t disagree with that, either. I have an acquaintance who is apparently a libertarian or something, and will periodically echo annoying conservative arguments. She’s been unemployed for about a year and a half, maybe, and underemployed for longer, and I felt bad for her travails. She recently popped up in a discussion of the millionaires’ tax, arguing against it because the amount of money wouldn’t be significant, “just a drop in the bucket.”
If you’re going to argue against the government having more money to work against the “we can’t afford it” argument against helping the economy more, no more sympathy for you!
But on the other side, if we have potential defectors, we have to try to bring them along if we want to win, not put on our own little show trial for their past crime of being a Republican.
@Democratic Nihilist, Keeper Of Party Purity:
I think Johnson was hoping that the Civil Rights Act would lead to a more tolerant America (including the South), not right away but at some point down the line. So that eventually, it wouldn’t matter if the economic royalists had managed to corner the racist vote, because the racist vote would become too small to matter.
And he basically gambled that the liberals would be able to hold the line against the elitist/racist coalition until that time came. Jury’s still out on that one.
@Waynski: there arent any true “indies”.
there are just tails in the bi-modal distribution of political affiliation.
the doom of the GOP is the demographic timer…..minorities that have natural conservative tendancy but have been alienated from the republican party.
Villago Delenda Est
Brock is an apostate, and these guys are worse than Saudi Imams when it comes to apostates.
@The Dangerman: what they are really running on is white christian nativism and american “exceptionalism.”
Culture of Truth
What happened to Obama’s Katrina?
I followed the link and was going to comment over there. Then I decided why bother? The place is filled with crazy people who actually believe the crap they spew. It’s scary and sad.
Roger Ailes has hurt America more than he could ever have imagined. How will he pay for his crimes?
Culture of Truth
also, Obama’s 9/11, Obama’s Tora Bora, Obama’s WMD, Obama’s yellowcake, Obama’s aircraft carrier, Obama’s Iraq, Obama’s Afghanistan, Obama’s US Attorney’s, Obama’s recession…
Moderates, yes, centrists, I’d be a little more careful. I would characterize what we’ve seen over the past couple of decades as establishing that moderates are people who whose views are closer to the other pole than most of your party, but who are willing to work with you and go along. Centrists are people with similar views who are willing to work with you as long as you adopt their position.
Backed by prominent columnists who are sure that the “center” of politics is always halfway between the Democrats and Republicans no matter how far right the Republicans fly, centrists can be dangerous to having a party that actually stands for anything other than compromising with the other side.
When I posted on this log for the very first time, I used Media Matters as my blog link, and still do.
I remember in 2004 quoting Media Matters to the shit-spewing warmongers who thought George Bush farted cold coins and roses, and it made them apoplectic to read their own shit back to them. So of course I was a terrorist-sympathizer because I was quoting MM and, so, shut up, that’s why.
David Brock still irritates the living shit out of me, but MM is a force to be reckoned. And how about that time machine the President is using? Bouncing back to ‘aught-four, just to give Jeffy “O have mercy on me” Lord something to go with his Metamucil.
So donated $50. heh.
@amk: the event horizon of wingnut specific gravity is already expanding the schwartzchild radius and deforming reality.
i think we are being engulfed in the leading edge, but the true Wingularity will not arrive until Nov 2012.
@Culture of Truth: I think you’ve answered your own question there. Since they’ve decided to pretend that Bush II never existed, none of his scandals exist either.
Jesus H. That article and the comments thread that follows it is a primer on every conspiracy theory currently making the rounds with regards to President Obama, President Clinton, LBJ, and every other Democrat from time immemorial.
I need a drink to clear my head. Yes, it’s that bad.
@Chris: Good point on centrist/moderate.
@Samara Morgan: Also a good point. Perhaps, “persuadables” is a better term for the people we’re talking about whether they’re self-identified Indies, or low-information Republicans by habit, which seem to be some of the voters other folks were talking about in this thread.
Well spotted. Never thought about the “moderate/centrist” distinction.
Yup, but if you measure everything on a binary ruler, oh! look! there are only two kinds of people in the world.
And, oh OT Looky, the NYPD is really running off on it’s lonesome with the surveillance: NYPD built secret files on NJ, Long Island mosques
@The Dangerman: You fergot Fast and Furious. Which they’re pursuing to get rid of that other uppity nigra. But not as hard as if Obama were directly involved.
My theory on Beltway centrists is that the centrism is strictly to keep the status quo. As long as hoi polloi stays “civil” (i.e. shuts up), and the parties don’t do anything to cause any big domestic reaction, the current power structure won’t be upset. This means that they’ll keep their six-figure-plus sinecures and dinner party invitations, and that’s pretty much the only thing they give a shit about.
Well, where I live there are no more sane Republicans. Most of the sane ones left during the Reagan years and the Shrub chased the rest of them out. It’s pure Teabagger Fundie madness around here. Rick Santorum will be reeling them in easily. Hell, they were the only ones that voted for him back in ’06.
Well, of course I don’t call them lazy to their faces. But in talking to too many of them, that is what it comes down to. They simply don’t want to be bothered to learn about issues until the presidential election rolls around every four years. But I’m happy to be educating them if that is what it takes.
comrade scott's agenda of rage
This is why I think they’ve tried – even if halfheartedly – to gin up a “scandal” over the Solyndra bankruptcy: except, as usual, Republicans have a ton-load of their own “crony capitalist” BS rattling around in the memory hole (including some in “alternative energy”. The “Fast and Furious” “gunwalking” flap also had some little amount of traction, but fell into the yawning chasm of public indifference; so what’s a diligent GOP scandalmonger to do?
I swear, in 2009, the Kenyan leprechauns must have sneaked into the White House and sown the Rose Garden with a whole sward of four-leaf clovers: Barack Obama has to be one of the luckier Presidents…..
comrade scott's agenda of rage
I somewhat disagree. Yes, the specific target of the Republican Derangement Syndrome means the Derangement Syndrome amplifier is turned up to 11 because of the aforementioned blackity bits, but, the Derangement Syndrome was shoved to 10 during the Clinton years, you don’t impeach a popular sitting president for only the second time in the country’s history unless the Derangement Syndrome isn’t in full force.
Culture of Truth
I know some moderate Republicans (i.e., ardently pro-choice). They’re as obsessed with race as the others. Maybe more so.
Yes, these people. It can work on them. Hell, my John and I proved it the other night. We were at the local VFW (we are members for the cheap drinks!) and something came on the tv about Mexicans and immigration. And people started to get all anti-immigrant for a second when John jumped into the conversation, acting all indignant like everyone else, but talking about how un-American this sort of thing is and how we all came from immigrants and we should be proud that America is where all our ancestors wanted to be and we should feel the same way for the newer immigrants, regardless of how they got here. And by the end, the whole bar was practically singing “America the Beautiful” and people were talking about how their family got here (some of them through less than legal means) and cheering on the Mexican immigrants. It was beautiful.
Yep. I’ve noticed that my dad has lost a lot of his enthusiasm for tweaking me about politics, even though he still watches Fox News religiously. W was a huge disappointment, though he’d never openly admit that. He just kind of stopped talking about him.
It’s easy to cut off people who aren’t important to us, but it’s a lot harder to cut off the people we still love even though their politics drive us up the frickin’ wall.
@geg6: It’s also learned behavior not to bother with paying attention to anything until the elections. For probably a good portion of their lives, there wasn’t enough practical difference between the parties to matter, they’d sort of backed themselves into the center like the Hotelling / Ice-cream-seller-on-the-beach example. (Explaining the difference between Ds and R to Europeans was notoriously amusing.) That, and with all the not-voting as rigid blocs made for entirely different a political environment. People are probably going to have to unlearn the habit, which they will do when it smacks home, but then there’s the old horse to water problem.
The smartest move of Dubya’s political career: after he left the White House, he (mostly) shut up. His biography turned into a big nothingburger that barely sold, and other than that he pretty much disappeared.
I think this was my favorite part:
Let’s start with Anthony Ulasewicz. Or,[sic] “Tony” as the late New York City cop turned private investigator turned Watergate figure was known.
I love how he tried to use the fact that a guy named Anthony was better known as Tony sound sinister with the use of scare quotes. It’s so hilariously overwrought. I can just imagine him doing it for every other name: “Let’s start with Jonathan…or ‘John’ as he is known.” Or maybe even “Let’s start with Richard Santorum…or ‘Rick’ as he is known.”
@Yutsano: Yup. I’m grateful for shrub’s deafening silence since 2008.
@Democratic Nihilist, Keeper Of Party Purity:
Historical perspective is needed. Pre-1964, the party of “bigots and sociopaths” was the Democratic Party.
Even more historical persepctive is needed. Pre-1964, bigots and sociopaths were spread throughout both parties. The Democratic Party was the home of the Southern segregationists, true, but it was also the home of FDR, Harry Truman, labor unions, tenant farmers, and the big city working classes. The Republican Party had not spread out the welcome mat to the Southern crazies by that point, but it was already the home of McCarthyism and Richard Nixon.
I think it is important that we not let them shove Boy Blunder down the memory hole. I love how they now want to claim he was not a conservative. So then I ask them to name a single initiative W proposed that all the conservative in the House and Senate did not get behind and pass. Name a single appointee a Republican official opposed or a single bill that did not get to the Presidents desk in the form he wanted. Name one of the talking heads from hate radio or the cable cabal that opposed the reverse Midis touch of W.
A very tiny minority may remember the attempt to kill social security as the single issue where the Republican Congress separated an inch from Boy George. But that is easy to counter as Republican voters are not THAT stupid.
Boy Blunder was the pinnacle of conservative thought while in the WH. NEVER let them forget it & never let them pretend otherwise
Sure, I think we pretty welcoming on this side. I mean, we’re on a former Republican’s blog.
I recently had a friend start to switch sides after a long history of being a libertarian. Part of it was, I think, OWS really making people think that our side had some energy and some passion to it. No matter how nuts your side is, it’s really hard to jump to the losing side just based on principle and/or logic.
edited for additional accuracy
@Chris: I think perhaps the 2008 and (based on what I see on the horizon) 2012 elections will ultimately prove Johnson correct, though it’s been a lot longer coming than he might have expected. The massive tilt toward Democrats among young voters, specifically on these cultural/racial matters, tells us the future is going to be less favorable for the bigot-courting vote than it’s been over the last half-century. The South will be ever more isolated in its bigotry, and even it is being altered slowly (in states like FL, VA, NC) by people moving in from other parts of the country.
Something to speculate on: had the Dems not split over Vietnam (and the side issues it carried with it), might this rapprochement have come a bit sooner? Remember, the Civil Rights Act had already passed when LBJ trounced Goldwater, so the backlash that enabled the Southern strategy (which ought to be more accurately called the Southern plus northern near-suburbs strategy) didn’t arise immediately. The cultural divide that the 60s produced added alot of juice to the resentment of older Americans, beyond merely the Civil RightAct, and may be the reason it was such an enduring coalition (and one Republicans found worth cultivating with its decades of dog-whistles).
I’ve been working hard on a work friend who is an Indie. Just little discussions of current events, pointing out what each side is focused on, no hard judgments but lots of fact she can look up later. She knows I’m a skeery, skeery liberal Obot, but she knows enough to know that the other side is even skeerier. All this climbing into people’s uterii is pretty much sealing the deal. She told me yesterday that she’s not telling her husband the truth about who she votes for in November. That’s what I call progess.
It’s interesting, though — my dad was never really a big fan of any of the Bushes, junior or senior. Even his support for W was based on getting all whipped up about Al Gore “stealing” the election. I can’t think of any actual policy of Bush’s that my dad liked, and that includes the Iraq War. My mom is big on supporting the troops (she does care packages and stuff like that) but she’s not a fan of the war itself, either.
But, as other people have said, it became a tribal thing, and the tribal marker for their group of friends in Arizona was Hating Democrats. They spent a whole lot more time criticizing Democrats than they did praising Bush.
ETA: Which is probably one of the reasons I get Obotty sometimes — I want to make it clear that I actually like Obama’s policies and think he’s doing a good job, not just that I hate Republican policies. I am a Democrat because I think we’re right, not only because the other side is wrong.
OT – you should read gopolitico’s top ten ‘white’ knights for rethugs. Hilarious.
@Yutsano: They can’t be too hard core about that. Gun Walking was something that was done under the previous administration, and Fast and Furious was proposed and greenlighted under the previous admin. It didn’t start until after the Obama admin took office, but it was primarily a show run by the career civil servants in DOJ and ATF.
They have to be very careful lest they fratricide themselves here.
You should be able to demonstrate for your mom that the GOP loves war but hates the troops. They sure don’t treat them like they deserve when thy get home.
NOW they don’t spend time praising Boy George but ask them to show you anything from the right during his term in office that was less than praise, that objected to his policies. When they try to pretend thats all in the past ask them how they know the latest edition (Willard, Salamander, Frothy) would be any different. How can they be sure every Republican wouldn’t follow along if those guys turn out to be not “true conservatives”?
I didn’t even tell you the funniest part — for all of her whining about the horrible Democrats, my mom is very proud of the fact that she’s never voted in her life. Not once. She was a paranoid libertarian before it was fashionable and didn’t want the government to be able to “track” her.
I took her opinions a lot less seriously once I found that out.
Ahh. Cheap drinks. The top soil of common ground.
That makes my day! The fewer people who might vote for something like W that actually do vote the more I like it!
I like this story a lot. It’s good to hear something encouraging for a change from the insanity.
True, but I really wish we had not given the GOP such a broadly advantageous foundation in the 2010 elections for erecting a wide array of sturdy structural impediments by which they can slow much of the effect of the demographic/attitudinal tide for up to an additional decade in many respects. The best example is the state-level legislative and gubernatorial control the GOP won in numerous states, enabling them to control the congressional redistricting process. Look at how vigorously Scott Walker and the GOP legislative minority are in both erecting structural barriers and tearing down basic foundations (beyond just congressional redistricting) that will be difficult to dismantle until the Dems control both legislature and the governorship at the same time, which will be made more difficult by state-level legislative redistricting. If on the national level the GOP does somehow win one last hurrah by taking the Presidency and winning both houses of congress for even two years, it may take two decades to undo the damage before we can go forward, and we may lose SCOTUS for the next twenty to thirty years if a GOP President gets to name the replacement for one of the more moderate justices.
In the mid and especially long term the GOP as it’s currently constituted is doomed to drown in the sea of profound demographic change, but the monster can inflict enormous lasting damage in its death throes.
It is. I’m more worried about what it’s going to take to build up (or rebuild) economic liberalism than the racial and cultural kind, actually. A lot of that trickle down/freedom = capitalism/government-is-always-the-problem bullshit’s imprinted on the minds of the general public in the last thirty years, including a lot of these guys who might be liberal on cultural and racial issues. Hopefully, the 2008 crisis and the Goopers’ absolutely batshit insane reaction to it will help blunt the appeal.
Its kinda amazing how the Republicans have evolved into a group which thinks “party==country==party” and thus anything outside is traitorous by definition. Amazing how much they’ve come to resemble what they hated: a hardline, “the party is the people and can never be defeated” leader-worshipping, “the rapid dogs against us shall have their skulls crushed by the boot of the people” communist party. All they need is Reagan in a glass coffin inside some oppressively white wedding cake of a building where silent worshipers gather and the cycle would be complete.
Obama gets much of the racist vitriol, but imagine if the boring, inoffensive, wooden John Kerry had somehow managed election in 2004. The vitriol would have been the same, in tone, with a different set of insults used. Kerry would still be the greatest agent of Satan and worst traitor to America ever known, just as Obama is.
Georgia Democrat proposes state ban on vasectomies. Her logic is unimpeachable:
It’s hard to ague with that.
Bill in Section 147
@geg6: Yes. But That George was also an honorable man.
It’s all about separating stupid people from their money. One of Palin’s most endearing traits for example.
I approve of this.
Stupid people should not be trusted with guns or money.
@geg6: Nice work! I enjoy seeing my enemies crushed, but seeing them defect is much more satisfying
Sister Machine Gun of Quiet Harmony
Peak wingnut is an asymptote.
It’s worse: the full thing reads “Party == Country == God == Party.” That whole line in the Bible about not serving two masters (let alone three) comes to mind right about now. I find it funny how they claim to follow God’s word above all things, but somehow, “the will of God,” “the will of the Party” and “what’s good for America” always seem to align perfectly and never come into conflict.
I think it’s possible to feel a bit sorry for some and politely but firmly countering the Fox lies they’ve been told at the same time.
I told my Republican Rep’s young female staffer (in her later 20’s) how much I disagreed with the House efforts to defund Planned Parenthood. I was shocked to hear her say she was planning to stay celibate and she didn’t want to pay for some teenager’s birth control. She didn’t quite know what to say when I told her I would pray for her.
“Cut! That’s not the script! I’m supposed to be the one saying that!”
Yes, people need somewhere to jump TO. Somewhere that feels right – emotions count. That’s one of the good things OWS has done — defining a tribe that’s not a conventional party and has positions that resonate with people.
Exactly! She was stumped. I almost started giggling.
Well, one of the things I sussed out of my mom in her very hesitant admission she may vote for Obama if Santorum is the nominee is something I knew before, but now know in a bit more detail.
She’s 65 – so she’s right in the sweet spot of Fox News demographics, and of the Tea Party. Her introduction to politics was right around 1968. She sees everything more or less still against that backdrop. The fallout from civil rights was continuing. Vietnam was a clusterfuck. The left was all over the map spending about as much energy creating chaos as creating order. As things settled down, we rolled straight into the bad economic shit of the 70s, through Watergate, through the hostage situation and the Soviet fun with Afghanistan, boycotting Olympics, lots of troubling government changes around the world, and finally onto Reagan. Reagan is revered not because of what he specifically did, but because the country and the world did finally seem to unfuck itself right around that time. Well, more accurate, the first derivative of fuckedness seemed to go from negative to positive – whatever downward spiral it seemed we were on turned positive, and Reagan just lucked into a lot of if, or sweet-talked us into not noticing.
To my mom, she learned to associate most of the bad shit with Democrats. The insanely stupid regulation around transportation and unions that was ultimately unpacked (that it was put there by Nixon and taken away by Carter is a detail that doesn’t stick), she thinks that the social programs that Dems championed had an unintended negative consequence when they combined with Civil Rights. She doesn’t necessarily think they were bad ideas, but poorly implemented and a lot of bad shit resulted. I think if she had been left leaning while watching these things play out, she’d have formed exactly the opposite view – which is what my dad did, he’s gone full bonkers left, much moreso than my mom went right – and blamed everything on Nixon and Reagan and so on.
My point is that she’s inclined to oppose unions because in the 70s, some protections given to unions were insane overreaches and seriously hurting the economy, and she sees all union debates against that backdrop. She’s oversensitive to the gas price issue because she was 26 with a 5 year old in the back seat sitting in line for 3 hours to buy gas that we couldn’t afford to begin with in 1973, and then repeated that again a few years later – and she can’t really ever shake that. On a policy and implementation level, she’s extremely distrustful of Democrats in general, and Fox News is fantastic at tapping into her historic apprehensions and reliving them over and over and over. Iran coverage taps into the emotions she had over the oil embargoes and the hostage situation.
On top of that, Nixon left her cynical of all politicians at a personal level, and the modern GOP actually taps into that as well. ‘Small government’ is as much a crusade against politicians, which they assume are all corrupt or at least corruptible, by eliminating the temptations of power. And so even if Obama isn’t corrupt and appears not to be easily corruptible, she already has baked in that it’s inevitable with him, so why invest in him personally, so she instead treats him like any other Democrat, like Clinton who was corruptible, and so on.
It’s really kind of interesting how a relatively small difference in initial viewpoint has been continually magnified and refined not so much into strong support for the GOP but a strong opposition to Democrats.
“There’s Obama Derangement Syndrome, and then there’s American Spectator, where tinfoil is a way of life.” and then there’s Utah, where Obama Derangement Syndrome is a way of life. See the Utah governor (Gary Herbert) facebook post about “Washington-Lincoln’s Birthday” (because we don’t want to honor any of those icky presidents like Carter or Clinton, nor certainly not the current one, as he points out).
I’m still floored that they’re conceding that Watergate actually happened and may not have been Nixon’s finest hour. When I get over the shock of that, I’ll move on to being gobsmacked over the idea that an current-events-opinion website is exactly the same as Watergate (which, if that’s true, really wasn’t so bad, but is bad enough to remove a president for THE STUPID, IT BURNS! THE GOGGLES, THEY DO NOTHING!)
Sister Machine Gun of Quiet Harmony
My mom is basically the same way.
@RSA: Now now, it’s not The Daily Tucker’s fault that “Beat up Waiter” was already taken.
And THAT is Faux News and the modern GOP in a nutshell.
Writer (and liberal Christian) Anne Lamott says that you know that you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.
@Sister Machine Gun of Quiet Harmony:
peak wingnut is still far away. but like any commodity, the closer we get the more and more of the lower-quality wingnut ends up getting mined.
@Martin: It’s also interesting that, whatever the current issue, everything about conservative politics today is still actually about the Johnson administration and its fallout. Ergo, Santorum complains in 2008 about Woodstock and the conservative crazies don’t look at him and ask “why is this shit relevant?” To them, it resonates, it makes sense to still be pissed about a 40-years past concert nobody told them about until it was all over.
Leave it to these people, and we’d have to put a suicide watch on Reality.
The real sin of Media Matters, the thing that really gets them, is that Media Matters is fucking exciting and the Media Research Center is fucking boring
I am glad that everyone on BJ is finally giving Brock his due after months of me ranting about how he’s St. George to Ailes’s Dragon
No offense, but she sounds like she was ready for cops to break heads in 1968 and nothing has changed, and the rest is a bunch of rationalization
I only hope that this particular temper tantrum (and as far as Ailes/Carlson/etc. go, this is maybe the 15th or 16th anti-David-Brock assault wave that I’ve counted) will help Democrats understand how absolutely crucial Media Matters is to understanding the country and planning for success
That is, the left has its own advantage over the right: they consume our media and are unable to relate, which stirs anger and motivates them;
however, we are (supposedly) able to imagine their mindset–
which means if we see how these sources market to them, we can fool them, demoralize them, exploit their structures for our gain
But MANY people on the left, and ESPECIALLY liberals/Democrats, are actually very afraid to think like conservatives and divorce themselves from it by conjuring up caricatures without real motivations
According to my hard-right brother, Media Matters is in charge of MSNBC and CNN and dictates talking points to all “liberal” media such as CBS and NBC. But he himself “watches Fox, CNN and MSNBC and then makes up his own mind.”. That ‘s also what my Glenn Beck-worshiping father boasts as his claim to rugged individualism. I shake my head at the self-delusion.
Well, I don’t think she was so much ready for it, but she was 22 and witnessed it, and formed whatever explanations around that which she needed to make sense of it. I don’t doubt that it was an imperfect rationalization, but keeping in mind that I was born in 1968, she had other things to attend to.
And we have imperfect rationalizations that are no different in nature than hers, but driven by other forces. I think the Obama/Hillary fight illustrated that clearly enough.
Conservatives have been fighting a war against the 20th Century, everything from the New Deal to the Civil Rights era to Vietnam. They see modernity and even the Enlightenment as a huge wrong direction away from a Christian nation chosen by the Deity, with Ronald Reagan and Sarah Palin as Twin Pillars of Common Sense Real American(tm) values.
Oh yes. There is no such thing as overdosing on schadenfreude, you simply can’t have too much of it. Although watching Rick Santorum wallowing in santorum over the past week, I have had to dial it back a little bit. I’m starting to wonder when he’s going to call for burning infidels at the stake, infidels being anyone who doesn’t follow his script down to the last bit of doctrine. To paraphrase, he seems to be haunted by the fear that somebody, somewhere, is having fun in a way he doesn’t approve of.
They don’t just wear the hats, tinfoil is their total diet.
I see you filthy liberal O-bots have taken the farting story at face value. What you’re forgetting is that after this momentous fart, he had skidmarks in his underwear.
THIS IS THE LEADER OF THE FREE WORLD, AND HE SHIT IN HIS PANTS! Do you want a leader of this nation who shits his pants? At least 34 – this is a conservative (I bet you hate that word!) estimate – of our Presidents have been fully toilet trained, including, by general acclamation, George W. Bush.
But you want to disregard this. What if he’s meeting with Iranian President Ahmadinejad, with no preconditions, and shit his pants on the world stage? He would diminish the standing of the United States and elevate a brutal dictator above us!
Those of us old enough to remember the Clinton insanity know that the Spectator engaged in EXACTLY the same rhetoric, so Obama’s race may be a suffcient explanation, but it’s not a necessary one.
I don’t have any republican friends. A couple of relatives, but no friends. My relative who is a R’pug had a serious head injury on a construction site, then went to law school.
But NO friends.
As my Mom gradually died of OCPD smoking Pall Malls, the thing that she lived for – after being a Republican all her life – was to vote against the anti-choice Republican persidential candidates.
She swore me to secrecy, “Don’t tell your Dad!” but those hateful bastards helped keep her alive 6 years after the Doctors thought she would be gone.