Re: Inane in the Membrane

1

Is there anything more asinine than the insistence that America never, ever, be sorry?

Claiming that a bird is a dinosaur, obviously.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 7:52 PM
horizontal rule
2

"The United States takes this as seriously as if this was our own citizens and our own children who were murdered," Mr. Obama said, in his first public remarks since the shooting took place on Sunday. -- NYT


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 7:54 PM
horizontal rule
3

On-topic-ish, ABC's calling Mississippi for Santorum.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:01 PM
horizontal rule
4

||

Speaking of inane, say hey, if you guys want to listen to a kind of half-assed mix I did on my DJ doohickey instead of feeling sad about our role in the world (and/or continuing to talk, implausibly, about dinosaurs), gosh, have at it.

|>


Posted by: Beefo Meaty | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:06 PM
horizontal rule
5

The line from the insipid 70's movie with Ryan O'Kneel book by the guy the wrote about a seagull... War Story. Thats it! War means never having to say your sorry.


Posted by: Bob Savage | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:20 PM
horizontal rule
6

3: As in most close 3-way races , the maps (border states 1968 presidential election for instance) are interesting for Mississippi and Alabama. Some hints of the patterns seen here, but not that striking.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:44 PM
horizontal rule
7

Looks like Santorum wins both.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:50 PM
horizontal rule
8

Them urban/suburban Republican loves fears them some Romney Santorum and Gingrich.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:56 PM
horizontal rule
9

7: not just that, but looking at the numbers over at TPM, it appears that Romney will finish third in both. That said, who cares? He's still going to be the nominee. And the fact that the fire-eating neo-Confederates hate him makes me like him a bit more.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:57 PM
horizontal rule
10

I presume Gingrich will drop out at this point. But then I think, eh, he's kind of a dick. Maybe not.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 8:57 PM
horizontal rule
11

His camp is making lots of noises suggesting that he won't drop out for some time. Of course, that's what campaigns always say. Still, there are moons to be blown up, buffalo to be wrestled, and Mormons to be ratfucked, so maybe he'll stick around.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:00 PM
horizontal rule
12

Again, it's not like it matters.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:00 PM
horizontal rule
13

12: True, but no one wants to talk about the actual post topic either, so we're stuck with it.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:01 PM
horizontal rule
14

10: He's probably getting some kickbacks from the big money boys to stay in and peel off some of the lunatics from Santorum.

Mormons to be ratfucked

Do you think he's helping or hurting Romney at this point? (Give your answer in rat orgasms.)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:02 PM
horizontal rule
15

13: but no one wants to talk about the actual post topic

I'd like to apologize on behalf of the commentariat.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:04 PM
horizontal rule
16

15: Appeaser!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:06 PM
horizontal rule
17

13: I tried! I linked to the Paper of Record and everything!

14.2: I can't be bothered to care enough to try to game it out. Romney is getting the nomination. Full stop. It was, for a few days there, marginally interesting to ponder how much Republican voters hate him and whether that hatred might be meaningful, but then he won Michigan and Ohio. After that, Gingrich's tantrums became a very dull sideshow. It's sad, really, but there it is.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:07 PM
horizontal rule
18

16: Explicitizer!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:07 PM
horizontal rule
19

arginally interesting to ponder how much Republican voters hate him

But I assume no truth to the rumor that he contemplated changing his first name to 'Not".


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:09 PM
horizontal rule
20

14.2: I mean, if you can figure a way that Romney might not be the nominee -- short of claiming that birds are dinosaurs, I mean -- I promise to get interested again, okay? But until then, I feel like there's not really any way that I can care.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:09 PM
horizontal rule
21

I mean. I'm mean. I am the mean. Mean I. Meanie. Miami.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:10 PM
horizontal rule
22

13 (con't): Also tough when right off the bat in comment 3, someone starts down a tangent.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:10 PM
horizontal rule
23

Oh, yeah, the Afghanistan thing: gross. What's there to say? In war there will be massacres. It's awful and bad for everyone. Mitt Romney will fix things.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:12 PM
horizontal rule
24

20: Sure he'll be the nominee--but I just like seeing the motherfucker sweat a bit. But he knows some people who own deodorant manufacturers.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:12 PM
horizontal rule
25

What is a bit of a surprise to me is how little the Mormon thing has seemed to matter, and how the narrative is that Romney's just straight-up uncomfortable in his own skin. The height of the trees thing. The cheese grits thing. He's Captain Awkward.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:16 PM
horizontal rule
26

What is a bit of a surprise to me is how little the Mormon thing has seemed to matter, and how the narrative is that Romney's just straight-up uncomfortable in his own skin. The height of the trees thing. The cheese grits thing. He's Captain Awkward.

Well, he's just such a fucking weird guy, and the stress of the campaign seems to be bringing that out more and more.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:18 PM
horizontal rule
27

And to VW, yeah, I don't see any way he doesn't get the nomination at this point. Nate Silver had a post a few days ago showing that Romney's so far ahead in delegates that there's no way anyone can beat him that way, so the only way to stop him would be a brokered convention. At that point the necessary chain of events gets so implausible that it's not really worth trying to game it out.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:20 PM
horizontal rule
28

The point of talking about is, it's fun to watch Republicans squirm.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:22 PM
horizontal rule
29

He's probably getting some kickbacks from the big money boys to stay in and peel off some of the lunatics from Santorum.

And I thought I was cynical for thinking he was waiting for the best drop-out offer.

Are there no more primary debates? Those were wonderfully, publicly bad for the Republican brand as a whole.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:23 PM
horizontal rule
30

I know I could easily look this up, but haven't recent polls shown Obama's approval going down? The Republican field is so bad that I can't even enjoy watching the squirm; Romney might still become President.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:27 PM
horizontal rule
31

29.2: Maybe after the general election they could have a debate reunion tour. What was your favorite lineup?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:28 PM
horizontal rule
32

30: Yep


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:29 PM
horizontal rule
33

how little the Mormon thing has seemed to matter

Two Catholics and a Mormon are the lead contenders, and the right-wing rallying cry de jour is "religious freedom."

Bringing up the Mormon thing in public is very, very likely to backfire. But I'm pretty sure that it's been part of the background chatter. A few evangelical movers and shakers have made remarks that got on the record.

Sane Republicans want to keep the Western states in play, as "Dixie Now and Forever" is not going to be winning strategy going forward -- and I think they know that Obama is likely to be re-elected.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:31 PM
horizontal rule
34

What was your favorite lineup?

I enjoyed the additions of Bachmann and Perry for their unpredictability. Cain was boring until the harassment scandals starting breaking.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:36 PM
horizontal rule
35

Are there no more primary debates?

Hello, Oregon!

Despite the news that Governor Mitt Romney has declined to participate in the Oregon Presidential Primary Debate, the Oregon Republican Party announced today that it is prepared to move forward with the debate between the three remaining candidates: Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul.

March 19th.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:37 PM
horizontal rule
36

And I betcha a nickel Romney jumps in.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:38 PM
horizontal rule
37

23

Oh, yeah, the Afghanistan thing: gross. What's there to say? In war there will be massacres. It's awful and bad for everyone. Mitt Romney will fix things.

Maybe he will by getting out. It was Obama's bright idea to escalate.

It's strange, if a cruise missile (or something) malfunctioned and killed a bunch of civilians no one would care but if a soldier malfunctions and kills a bunch of civilians it's a big deal.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:38 PM
horizontal rule
38

The Republican field is so bad that I can't even enjoy watching the squirm; Romney might still become President.

This. This a hundred times. Also, I do wonder if Obama's numbers have started to come down because the Republicans have had the good sense to stop having televised debates.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:41 PM
horizontal rule
39

if a cruise missile (or something) malfunctioned and killed a bunch of civilians no one would care

Except for a bunch of dirty fucking hippies who have been talking about the problem with relying on automated weaponry for decades now.

if a soldier malfunctions and kills a bunch of civilians it's a big deal

If a "malfunctioning" soldier has a mass-murdering "malfunction," this is also a big deal. We pay for psychological testing for soldiers in part because it's important not to have lunatics out in the field, fucking everything up, and in part because we have a responsibility to these young people who volunteered to do this job.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:57 PM
horizontal rule
40

Teo, can you bring us no news of the Iditarod?


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 9:58 PM
horizontal rule
41

30, 32: Answer hazy, try again later.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:18 PM
horizontal rule
42

Teo, can you bring us no news of the Iditarod?

Youngest winner ever.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:22 PM
horizontal rule
43

VW, I'll have you know that because you brought him up, I went and looked at Tre/vin/o's Twitter feed the other day. I hold you personally responsible for the psychic damage I've incurred as a result.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:34 PM
horizontal rule
44

42: I thought maybe you had the inside scoop.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:34 PM
horizontal rule
45

43: you should friend him on facebook. He's a really broken guy. Still, what can I say? He was interesting in the radio interview.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:35 PM
horizontal rule
46

44: I don't know what would have given you that idea.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:35 PM
horizontal rule
47

46: in the same way that there are only seven Canadians -- me, MC, and five other people who drift in and out of the lives of Americans at various times -- I assumed that you must know the other person living in Alaska.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:36 PM
horizontal rule
48

I don't know Sarah Palin either, in case you're wondering.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:38 PM
horizontal rule
49

When Mississippi and Alabama agree on something (much less Republicans in those two states) you can be pretty sure it's not good.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:39 PM
horizontal rule
50

48: fine, play it that way. Whatever.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 10:40 PM
horizontal rule
51

Other Alaskans I don't know: Lisa Murkowski, Don Young, Jewel.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-13-12 11:03 PM
horizontal rule
52

It's strange, if a cruise missile (or something) malfunctioned and killed a bunch of civilians no one would care but if a soldier malfunctions and kills a bunch of civilians it's a big deal.

Well, actually, I think you find that if you go and argue your thesis over in Afghanistan you'll rapidly notice people there will disagree with you on that.

They'll also disagree on whether these things are "malfunctions" or just the predictable outcomes of invading a country in the first place, but rule number one of American interventions is that you have to pretend that any bad thing happening is an accident, not a deliberate policy or consequence of same. Unless you're the people it happens to; than you're still dead.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 12:44 AM
horizontal rule
53

37: yeah, Shearer, if you think people haven't been getting upset about civilians being killed by accident due to malfunctioning equipment in Afghanistan, you really haven't been paying much attention.

In fact it doesn't happen very often. Seldom does a shell or missile aimed at a bunch of bad guys go wrong and hit a bunch of civilians instead. Far more common seems to be the scenario where the missile hits the bad guys you aimed it at and they then turn out not to be bad guys after all.

On a related note, it's interesting that Predator drones attract so much attention from ethicists as a Big New Question, when people have been using completely autonomous killer robots by the hundred thousand in Afghanistan for decades - and they frequently make mistakes and kill civilians instead of enemy. They're called "land mines". No man in the loop for a butterfly mine.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 2:27 AM
horizontal rule
54

On a related note, it's interesting that Predator drones attract so much attention from ethicists as a Big New Question

Other Big New Questions: selective abortion, euthanasia.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 2:31 AM
horizontal rule
55

Well, selective abortion has been an issue for decades, though, ever since it became possible as an alternative to selective infanticide.
But when Predators started flying, suddenly everyone was wondering about the ethical issues involved in autonomous killing machines, regardless of the fact that Predators aren't autonomous or even close, and the fact that non-mobile autonomous killing machines have been around for ages.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 3:54 AM
horizontal rule
56

The thing we need to emphasize is that this guy who shot 16 civilians--like the "Kill squad" who hunted Afghans for sport and the team of guys who pissed on the bodies of the people they killed and the guy who authorized burning copies of the Koran--do not represent American values and are not typical American soldiers.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 5:41 AM
horizontal rule
57

20
14.2: I mean, if you can figure a way that Romney might not be the nominee -- short of claiming that birds are dinosaurs, I mean -- I promise to get interested again, okay? But until then, I feel like there's not really any way that I can care.

I assume that at this point Santorum goes to bed every night and kneels down and prays with his wife and their 17 children all in their little footie pajamas for Jesus to reveal the light and truth to Mitt Romney so that he willingly steps aside and makes way for a true servant of the Lord like Rickie, either that or they all pray for a video to surface of the sexual depravity they just know Romney was involved in as a Mormon from Massachusetts.

As for Gingrich, it's a book tour.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 5:44 AM
horizontal rule
58

Is 56 sarcasm?


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 5:52 AM
horizontal rule
59

The "wackier" side of Santorum has certainly come out in this campaign, but after an initial burst of that when he first came to the Senate he operated as standard Republican pragmatic grifter. So I'm not so sure it's not a book tour for Santorum as well, or at least a stab at "I can too haz political relevance" (i.e. conusulting dollars) rather than just be the guy who lost his Senate race by a record margin for an incumbent.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 5:55 AM
horizontal rule
60

56:As evidence, we must be sure to ignore the monthly school shoot-ups or office killings back here in the states, in order to be able to say that it is war that creates killers, not America. Or maybe it is guns that kill people, not Americans.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 5:59 AM
horizontal rule
61

The purity of our good intentions are not marred by the occasional slip-up in implementing them. Onward!


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:07 AM
horizontal rule
62

53

37: yeah, Shearer, if you think people haven't been getting upset about civilians being killed by accident due to malfunctioning equipment in Afghanistan, you really haven't been paying much attention.

What I meant is the current incident has gotten a lot more attention.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:12 AM
horizontal rule
63

http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/baucus-u-s-combat-troops-should-exit-afghanistan/article_09999754-6d80-11e1-b37a-0019bb2963f4.html

I guess this isn't really any kind of milestone, but when the policy has lost a guy like Max to the extent it seems to have, it's pretty far gone. I guess it becomes a military question about the rate at which troops can be safely withdrawn (or, I guess, not replaced as their 6 month tours end).


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:28 AM
horizontal rule
64

What is a bit of a surprise to me is how little the Mormon thing has seemed to matter, and how the narrative is that Romney's just straight-up uncomfortable in his own skin. The height of the trees thing. The cheese grits thing. He's Captain Awkward.

I bet the Mormon thing matters. I bet preachers and pastors give dog-whistle comments to their congregation.

I'm surprised that no one has said anything so overtly anti-Mormon that the media could run with it, but I bet it's a big problem for him.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:29 AM
horizontal rule
65

Is 56 sarcasm?

Oh no, no no. Not at all. I would never do something like that.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:32 AM
horizontal rule
66

Part of the aversion to apologies is that once you apologize the question of restitution may come up. That's a hell of a slippery slope, what with slavery and the theft of nearly the entire country from the previous inhabitants.

Perhaps I'm ascribing more thoughtfulness to a bunch of mouth-breathing jingos than is warranted, but I did see intimations that an apology for slavery is a first step towards reparations back when I had a higher tolerance for reading right wing blogs.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:35 AM
horizontal rule
67

58, 65: That would be un-american! Are you accusing rob of being un-american?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:35 AM
horizontal rule
68

64 -- I, on the other hand, think that while there might be a hard kernel of anti-Mormonism here, the real problem is political. Everyone knows that Romney is going to tack towards the center to the maximum extent he can get away with for the general. You know it, I know it, all of the Village knows it, and every neo-Confederate fundie knows it too: and it very well might work.

Santorum not nearly so much: he actually believes that crap. He may feint to the center, but would govern, to the extent he could, from where he's campaigning in places like Kansas and Alabama.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:38 AM
horizontal rule
69

If nothing else, the Mormon thing matters because it sharply limits Mitt's ability to demagogue the subject of religion. That's a big handicap in Mitt's party.

I may have missed it, but I didn't see anybody pick up on the slam against Romney that was implicit in Santorum's attack on JFK.

Romney, like JFK, would like you to believe that his religious beliefs shouldn't disqualify him from the presidency. Santorum, meanwhile, knows that he has the right religious beliefs for the presidency. Santorum must have been bitterly disappointed that Romney didn't pick up that particular gauntlet.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:43 AM
horizontal rule
70

69 -- So long as it remains clear that Obama is trying to create (or recreate) a greater caliphate, for example by cutting and running in Afghanistan, the religions of the Christians trying to take the country back won't matter.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:46 AM
horizontal rule
71

If only Romney were a Christian ...


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:47 AM
horizontal rule
72

I bet "Mormon" and "Muslim" tap a similar fear-center to frothy tea partiers. Not that they've got the same set of stereotypes. But they're both not Saved.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:49 AM
horizontal rule
73

I stepped from tea partiers to evangelicals there, but it's all a big mushpot.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:49 AM
horizontal rule
74

I thought I was cynical for thinking he was waiting for the best drop-out offer

I think Gingrich is pretty much a pariah within the GOP establishment, so I doubt anybody's offering him anything. He's just angling for a Fox News show in 2013. It's hard for me to express how much more I hate Gingrich than almost anybody else in that party. Everything about him makes me want to give him a solid kick in the yams. I am a little fascinated at his inability to address any issue, political or otherwise, without saying "elite media" at least three times. It's almost Tourette-level, though I'm pretty amused at a former Speaker of the House and multi-million dollar lobbyist with a half-million-buck credit line at Tiffany's for his trophy wife sneering about "elite" anything.

No, wait, I'm not amused. That too makes me want to kick him. Kickkickkickkick.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:51 AM
horizontal rule
75

I'm feeling a little humorless about 56 et seq. I have friends in the military and they are more pissed about the things listed than my liberal friends thanks in part to the fact that they are the ones who get the honor of dying over these things. Tarring over a million people with the acts of a few dozen is unfair to put it mildly.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:55 AM
horizontal rule
76

Not that they've got the same set of stereotypes.

Mormon=Muslim has been a common line of attack for about 150 years.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:56 AM
horizontal rule
77

Yeah, I dunno, clearly we're all damned and damned utterly. I think Romney could overcome the Mormon thing. I'm hoping that Obama has a bunch of October Surprises up his sleeve, even though a big part of me feels it would serve everyone right if he lost the election. If Romney did somehow pull it off, the 2014 midterms will be a very, very interesting election. Things are already going to be interesting at a state level with all the anti-union stuff. Do Repugs not realize that they've been coasting for 30 years on the perception among the white male working-class that their interests are somehow aligned because they both hate black welfare recipients and Mexicans? How much longer can that last with the class war politics becoming so obvious? Maybe a long time. Nobody ever went broke overestimating the stupidity and gullibility of the US electorate after all.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:57 AM
horizontal rule
78

it sharply limits Mitt's ability to demagogue the subject of religion.

I think that's right, and I think it's also creating some of the sense that he's so weird and awkward. I wouldn't be half surprised if part of the weird and awkward is that he can't go for a warm folksy religious reference without risking freaking out anti-Mormon bigots.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:57 AM
horizontal rule
79

What is a bit of a surprise to me is how little the Mormon thing has seemed to matter, and how the narrative is that Romney's just straight-up uncomfortable in his own skin. The height of the trees thing. The cheese grits thing. He's Captain Awkward.

Well, to be fair, it's been a bit of a surprise to me quite how uncomfortable Romney is in his own skin. I don't remember this from his last run. His ability to jam his foot in his mouth on even the simplest of political subjects - some of my best friends are NASCAR team owners, seriously? - has been spectacular. Plus I suspect that tying Romneycare to Obamacare is viewed as being the most productive line of attack by the other candidates, and they're probably right in the primary.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 6:59 AM
horizontal rule
80

Mormon=Muslim has been a common line of attack for about 150 years.

Has it really?! What's it based on, beside "other" and the letter M?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:08 AM
horizontal rule
81

Worshipping false prophets, I suppose.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:09 AM
horizontal rule
82

75: I don't know if it will help or hurt things if I make my point without insults or sarcasm, but I want to try.

At this point there is enough of a pattern of bad behavior that it indicates a cultural problem within the US military. The fact that soldiers from joint base Lewis-McChord are frequently involved in this sort of thing seems significant.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:09 AM
horizontal rule
83

What is a bit of a surprise to me is how little the Mormon thing has seemed to matter...

Two Catholics and a Mormon are the lead contenders, and the right-wing rallying cry de jour is "religious freedom."

I've come to think that now, after a generation of bluenose alliance-making, sectarian friction has lost most of its relevance in national elections. After all, the Deep South and countryside are going for Catholics now! If Romney talked like more of a religious extremist, I think he could win the exact same votes Santorum and Gingrich are.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:10 AM
horizontal rule
84

some of my best friends are NASCAR team owners, seriously?

And then on Monday, he went and said it again, only about football.

He's getting tired and a little panicky.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:11 AM
horizontal rule
85

75: This is, of course, my mother's main point, as an Army veteran, about the military: It's a big place, and there's virtually no generalization you can make that will stand up to any kind of scrutiny. At the same time, I would point out that we're not really talking about "typical American soldiers" here. We're talking about "typical front-line combat troops", a very much smaller set that DOES, I think, admit of some generalizations. The experience of being an REMF, even if you're piloting drones in North Dakota or something, is vastly, vastly different than that of actually being in the position of firing shots in anger personally, right there, where you can see and smell and hear the enemy because they're only a few feet away.

The other thing, of course, is that all but the most naive members of the military have to acknowledge, at some level, that they are directly implicated in prosecuting the war. And war itself is the abomination. I don't think that makes them evil. I don't even think "evil" is a very useful term to use in discussing these issues (except in regards to Dick Cheney). This sergeant with the two kids at home who murdered all these folx: why did he do that? Just to be mean? Or because the experience of being around so many other murders broke his psyche in some important way? Obviously, the latter. But of course the lying politicians would like you to believe just the opposite. I would argue that this fellow IS a 'typical American soldier', in that he is a human being who could not do the things he was ordered to do without some pretty awful psychological consequences. Yeah, not everybody in his position flips out and kills a bunch of civilians, but the desire to do that is not so alien to them as people would have you believe either. Thankfully, most of them are not broken so completely.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:11 AM
horizontal rule
86

link


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:11 AM
horizontal rule
87

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/war_stories/2012/03/the_massacre_of_innocent_afghans_by_a_u_s_soldier_has_destroyed_the_trust_that_was_necessary_to_succeed_.single.html

The thing that struck me about this story is that Al's drama club friend is getting shut down. Holy crap what a difference that is going to make.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:12 AM
horizontal rule
88

And obviously there are still plenty of movers and shakers to whom sect matters, possibly more among the elderly, but even they, it seems, can put that aside when it comes to shared goals.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:12 AM
horizontal rule
89

80
Mormon=Muslim has been a common line of attack for about 150 years.

Has it really?! What's it based on, beside "other" and the letter M?

I hadn't known that, but now that I think of it I can see why.

* History of polygamy, even in the present day in disreputable offshoots, even though no one in the "respectable" churches would ever admit to practicing that.
* Weird dress restrictions.
* They say they revere all the same holy men as Christians and just have a few more of their own, and they say they're just another branch of [Christianity]/[people of the book], but there really are some fairly big differences, like unique rituals and a few extra books that no other Christian cares about.
* They live in the desert.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:39 AM
horizontal rule
90

Has it really?! What's it based on, beside "other" and the letter M?

That, and the whole, "angel appears to a dude who writes a new book of scripture to restore the "true" faith and then takes up polygamy".


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:47 AM
horizontal rule
91

Maybe Romney could make inroads in the South by emphasizing the LDS history regarding black people.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:52 AM
horizontal rule
92

85 is sensible.

On the Mormon thing - A lot of evangelicals are going to suddenly decide that Mormons are at least tolerable once the issue comes down to Romney vs. Obama. It's hard to overstate the degree to which Obama is hated by fundies. I just got an invitation in the mail to a lecture on the end times which seems to imply that Obama is not just a Muslim but also some sort of pre-Anti-Christ.

The most virulently anti-mormon people are the same ones who are virulently anti-Obama. Romney will be able to get a lot of them to hold their nose and pull the lever for him, especially once the megachurch pastors start stumping for him.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 7:56 AM
horizontal rule
93

Polygamy has always been odious among the northern and western nations of Europe, and, until the establishment of the Mormon Church, was almost exclusively a feature of the life of Asiatic and of African people . . . we think it may safely be said there never has been a time in any State of the Union when polygamy has not been an offence against society, cognizable by the civil courts and punishable with more or less severity. In the face of all this evidence, it is impossible to believe that the constitutional guaranty of religious freedom was intended to prohibit legislation in respect to this most important feature of social life. Marriage, while from its very nature a sacred obligation, is nevertheless, in most civilized nations, a civil contract, and usually regulated by law. Upon it society may be said to be built, and out of its fruits spring social relations and social obligations and duties, with which government is necessarily required to deal. In fact, according as monogamous or polygamous marriages are allowed, do we find the principles on which the government of the people, to a greater or less extent, rests. Professor Lieber says, polygamy leads to the patriarchal principle, and which, when applied to large communities, fetters the people in stationary despotism, while that principle cannot long exist in connection with monogamy.

Reynolds v US, 1878. Chief Justice Waite seems to have been a little optimistic with that last bit.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 8:01 AM
horizontal rule
94

I just got an invitation in the mail to a lecture on the end times which seems to imply that Obama is not just a Muslim but also some sort of pre-Anti-Christ.

Dude, the Obama is the Anti-Christ theory probably predates the Obama is a Muslim theory.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 8:04 AM
horizontal rule
95

I originally de-lurked in a thread about unions, asking something like, "Isn't there an argument to be made that [X]?" To which LB replied, "Yes. Do you care to make that argument?"

And then I felt foolish, realizing my tone had been trollish. Not foolish enough to be dissuaded from further commenting, of course.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 8:08 AM
horizontal rule
96

Oops. Wrong thread.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 8:08 AM
horizontal rule
97

94: Certainly. The point is that it's still out there and most evangelicals would rather have a Mormon president than the Anti-Christ.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 8:18 AM
horizontal rule
98

97: Ah, but some will nonetheless reject your lesser-of-evils thinking. Where, I ask, is the Christian Nader?


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 8:42 AM
horizontal rule
99

haven't recent polls shown Obama's approval going down?

Some have, some haven't. I'm not sure there's much of a trend to be identified.

Romney might still become President

Anything's possible, of course. But again, the polling is all over the place.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 8:57 AM
horizontal rule
100

It appears that crazy-ass Roy "Ten Commandments" Moore is going to be the new chief justice of Alabama's Supreme Court.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 9:29 AM
horizontal rule
101

100: Shit, I meant to look for that last night. He was going to ride a horse to the polls.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 9:35 AM
horizontal rule
102

100: This must be the mirror image of how California looks to everyone else. Like the electorate deserves its government.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 9:45 AM
horizontal rule
103

89: also, not drinking. And associated with secret orders of assassins.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 10:01 AM
horizontal rule
104

Ah, I was wondering when "Obama is the Antichrist" was going to reenter the political discourse. This is probably an opportune time to start to spread the rumor that Mitt Romney is the Hidden Imam.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 10:52 AM
horizontal rule
105

100: Shit, I meant to look for that last night. He was going to ride a horse to the polls.

I'm surprised he didn't ride a donkey.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 10:56 AM
horizontal rule
106

89: also, not drinking. And associated with secret orders of assassins

Alcohol is frowned upon by quite a few American Christian sects.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 10:57 AM
horizontal rule
107

Their views on assassins vary.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 10:59 AM
horizontal rule
108

107: See Judges iii.12-28, for a Bronze Age Day of the Jackal.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 11:02 AM
horizontal rule
109

Well, to be fair, it's been a bit of a surprise to me quite how uncomfortable Romney is in his own skin. I don't remember this from his last run.

Since McCain ended up wrapping things up surprisingly quickly in 2008, we didn't see as much of Romney back then, plus a lot of airtime went to Giuliani and Fred Thompson and the like, plus there was a Democratic campaign, plus inequality wasn't a huge campaign issue so we didn't hear as much about Romney's wealth. But Romney always showed the potential to be the candidate he is now - see his "who let the dogs out" thing from Florida 2008 and some other stuff I don't remember anymore.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 12:19 PM
horizontal rule
110

23: Keep telling yourself that war creates the violence.


1 reported dead, 4 injured in Beaumont, Texas today, in a courthouse shooting following the courthouse shooting in Tulsa March 7th that left 4 injured.

Did I say once a month?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03-14-12 4:22 PM
horizontal rule