Re: No Take-Backs

1

"Reportedly," eh? So. Either WJC wants people to hear that he's calling in chips and is going to lay waste to the holdouts, or Richardson wants people to hear that two cabinet positions is not, in fact, enough.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:41 PM
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So great. I feel my love for WJC reviving.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:42 PM
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Or someone overheard Clinton on the call, or Richardson told a confidante who has loose lips, or Fournier knows someone at the NSA.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:43 PM
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Given that it's Richardson, two cabinet posts is most definitely not enough.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:45 PM
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Dude no h/t? I know you read my blog. I know you do.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:45 PM
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What blog? I saw this on Drudge.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:47 PM
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It's going to be an interesting three weeks from now until Texas and Ohio.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:47 PM
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What chips does Bill have to call in these days? I honestly don't know other than gratitude and personal relationships. Hillary can threaten, if people think she's going to win, but what does Bill have?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:47 PM
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7: Boy howdy.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:47 PM
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Maybe this can be the thread for things so horrible we can never take back. I only read Northrup's posts, man.

Kidding!

I don't even read those.

Ahahaha!


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:48 PM
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This is seriously the lede of an AP article?

For years, Bill and Hillary Clinton treated the Democratic National Committee and party activists as extensions of their White House ambitions, pawns in a game of success and survival.

The fact that the press sometimes gets it right in their Clinton-hating is maddening.


Posted by: destroyer | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:48 PM
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Ah, I see it's an "occasional column."


Posted by: destroyer | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:49 PM
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10: hey, same here.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:50 PM
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? I honestly don't know other than gratitude and personal relationships. Hillary can threaten, if people think she's going to win, but what does Bill have?

His rolodex. I think some of this works because of larger community ethics. If Richardson owes Clinton and doesn't pay off, who is going to take Richardson's chit in return for a favor in the future?


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:51 PM
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What chips does Bill have to call in these days?

I imagine the number of favors owed him and all the personal relationships count for a lot, such that a Democrat would think twice about crossing him. Maybe so-and-so doesn't endorse you, maybe you lose the chance to sit down with so-and-other-so, etc. The question here would be what they could do to Bill Richardson, who doesn't really need them, and the answer seems to be, not a hell of a lot.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:53 PM
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Bill can plant stories in the press about Richardson being an ungrateful motherfucker, and unreliable to boot, and hey, maybe the primary person responsible for that Wen Ho Lee clusterfuck after all.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:54 PM
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but what does Bill have?

"Don't make me bone your wife, Congressman."


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:55 PM
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8

"What chips does Bill have to call in these days? I honestly don't know other than gratitude and personal relationships. Hillary can threaten, if people think she's going to win, but what does Bill have?"

He can threaten on Hilary's behaft.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:55 PM
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They're down! Let's kick them!


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:56 PM
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So great. I feel my love for WJC reviving.

By the way, are you serious about this? When I read this, I thought, "damn, maybe he really is as trashy as the haters say."


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 7:57 PM
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"damn, maybe he really is as trashy as the haters say."

That's why we love him, isn't it? (And I can't believe that counts as trashy in politics, but it's close enough to remind me of good times long forgotten.)


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:01 PM
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My thoughts on the subject, you bastards!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:01 PM
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I think WJC can make a difference in fund-raising, and has enough connections in the Democratic party to make peoples' lives difficult. But it's not enough if Obama wins PA or TX.

By the way, are you serious about this?

Timbot appreciates power politics. He became a huge Belichek fans after he killed Joe Gibbs' dog.


Posted by: baa | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:03 PM
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Timbot appreciates power politics.

Is there any other kind?


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:05 PM
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That's why we love him, isn't it?

Yep. Just like we love Giuliani for his tasteful and decorous handling of tragedy, George Bush for his poise and intellect, and The Crypt Keeper for his rakish good looks and subtle sense of humor.


Posted by: earth thing | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:07 PM
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Anyhoo, I was sort of hoping that the thread would turn to untakebackable things people had said in their own lives.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:08 PM
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26: You first.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:09 PM
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Richardson has a legit shot at being asked to be Obama's VP. Why should he forsake that for the memory of two cabinet posts from a decade ago?


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:09 PM
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29

Calling my friend Jared "blackie" would fall in this category for me. There might have been one other thing in my adult life, but I can't remember the details, and considering that I'd call the person to ask, it couldn't have been all that bad.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:09 PM
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I cannot say that if Obama were to pick Richardson as VP I would be pleased.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:11 PM
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31

They say we can't escape power politics

They say we can't have a government without personal favors and back room deals.

They say we can't expect a better standard of behavior from our politicians, than anyone who has power will abuse it.

And I respond with three simple words...


Posted by: baa | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:11 PM
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31: You're an Obamainiac now? Neat.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:12 PM
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...they're probably right.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:12 PM
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34

30 - Richardson, however, would be.


Posted by: Wry Cooter | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:13 PM
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35

What really cannot be taken back is this.


Posted by: Wry Cooter | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:14 PM
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36

I used false pretenses to get a girl's number from a friend, after which time he pretty much stopped being friendly with me, regardless of my attempts to apologize. The girl was a lesbian, which I always figured should count against the idea that my actions were that sinister, or disloyal.

Curiously, that guy is now friends with another person I pretty much irretrieevably pissed off -- by calling him out on being really, really boring and full of himself as eloquently as I could manage on irc -- who has since become a (minor, admittedly) internet celebrity who's work I find pretty neat, thus causing me to collapse into a shallow, largely inconsequential and very brief spiral of self loathing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:14 PM
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29: Yeah, I thought that might be one. I can't really think of one off the top of my head, though I know, from my clenched gut, that there have been many.

I would think most came in the context of relationships, when you were holding back a critique for a long, long time.

31: "Neighbor, please!" is only two words.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:15 PM
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38

I seriously doubt Obama would pick Richardson for VP. Maybe a cabinet post.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:16 PM
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39

Richardson does seem to have a perception of his own importance in the world that does not match up with my perception of his importance in the world.

Maybe he's a lovely and competent man, but during all of the candidate debates I watched (most of 'em), he was the most comically annoying of the batch.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:16 PM
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40

...they're probably right.

They are right! And yet I still like Obama. His policies are (mostly) 50% delusion and 50% error, of course. But he certainly has the inspirational gift. Given that at least a quarter of the President's job in our media-saturated age is setting national tone, that's actually not irrelevant.


Posted by: baa | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:16 PM
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41

"Neighbor, please!" is only two words.

Nice.


Posted by: baa | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:18 PM
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39: Richardson is both a very competent and accomplished guy and a comically annoying blowhard. This is one of the many reasons he will never be president.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:19 PM
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40 is the best summing up of why right-wingers like Obama that I've ever seen.

baa if you could explain that to McManus?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:19 PM
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Politics seems to attract a lot of comically annoying blowhards. Ed Rendell, for instance. Joe Biden. I can't think of any others at the moment, but there are many.


Posted by: Wry Cooter | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:20 PM
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44: They tend to end up as governors or senators. Not presidents.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:22 PM
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They also tend to be kinds of governors who appoint themselves as senators when an incumbent senator dies or something.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:23 PM
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Biden came off better in the debates, though. Maybe it was because Biden's dominant tone was that of crochety exasperation, and Richardson's was that of wheedling overeagerness.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:23 PM
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40: And 100% genius! Because Obama is 2x a normal man! Or woman!

"Obama + Antichrist + Messiah" get 15,000 Google hits.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:24 PM
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45 - Very few politicians end up as president. As yet, only 42 people have managed that, and of those 9 got the job without being elected to it (although several were elected to it later).

I'd say several VPs have been comically annoying blowhards. Spiro Agnew comes to mind.


Posted by: Wry Cooter | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:25 PM
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And, er, our current VP might be considered a comically annoying blowhard, if he weren't so obviously evil.


Posted by: Wry Cooter | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:26 PM
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51

Thanks Sifu. I think the more general point is that most everyone, Dems and Reps, are basically patriots who love America more than they love their party. When you hear someone who is not transparently full of shit (see Romney, Mitt) give a heartfelt appeal to some aspect of the American ideal, it's really very powerful and attractive. This is why many Republicans like Dick Gephardt. I mean, the guy thinks protectionism works, but he's devoted his life to government, and he will just stand up there and with no irony say that young people should get into public service because it's an important way to make America better. That's awesome. I think this phenomenon also explains why John McCain has appeal to so many Democrats. He really is humbled by the opportunity to, as he sees it, serve America and defend her honor. That may not be your favorite part of the American ideal, but it's a real part, and it resonates.


Posted by: baa | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:27 PM
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40, 43:Given that at least a quarter of the President's job in our media-saturated age is setting national tone

I would have to interrogate it. "Setting national tone" isn't content free, obviously baa likes Obama's paticular tone better than the tone a Clinton or Edwards would set. Then I suspect we would get into the usual blah blah.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:31 PM
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You know I heard a story along these lines from the bad old days of the 'hammer' and the republican congress. A moderate repub was offered a plum comittee post, but then the leadership contacted him to say he had to change his pro-choice stance to get the new assignment. He avoided the demand by claiming the press release had already gone out.

Which just to say, people didn't come up with that line about sausage and law making for nothing.


Posted by: spaz | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:32 PM
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I think the more general point is that most everyone, Dems and Reps, are basically patriots who love America more than they love their party.

The problem is that we seem to mean different things by "America."


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:34 PM
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I don't know, as a far left socialist, I wouldn't feel that just getting to table and having Obama listen to me would be all that satisfying.

But maybe Republicans have abandoned any interest in policy and just want attention and respect without influence. I suppose it's possible.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:36 PM
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The appeal of both is pure constructed personality. McCain plays the genuine guy peeking out from the political mask, which makes the press love him, and Obama has a truly impressive gift for public speaking, which would be delightful even if it hadn't succeeded eight years of wondering if Bush would get onto the next phonics book.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:41 PM
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I think 51 is mostly true --- but there are important exceptions. It would be a more heartening thought if the likes of Dick Cheney and even Bush Jr. couldn't negotiate the ranks of patriots and end up in the drivers seat with apparent ease.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:45 PM
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The problem is that we seem to mean different things by "America."

At the edges, yes. In the main, no.


Posted by: baa | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:46 PM
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The appeal of both is pure constructed personality.

I object only to "pure." This goes back to the whole "media narratives" debate, of course.


Posted by: baa | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:49 PM
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35: Is her campaign responsible for this? Does Hillary want to be president, or does she want to buy the world a coke?


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 8:53 PM
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35 actually made me a little more inclined to vote for Hillary, in the same way that you sometimes want to give somebody a big hug after seeing them really screw up. Besides, you know she must be spending her time on thinking of substantive ways to help average Americans, because she sure isn't spending any of it on song lyrics.


Posted by: PerfectlyGoddamnDelightful | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:06 PM
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P.S. on 35: did you notice how they had to disable comments on the video?


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:07 PM
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63

They are right!

I drank Obama's milkshake! So should we all! So should we all!*

*Obligatory "writers strike is over, reference a show soon to be back on" reference.

P.S. Sifu, maybe you could get The Editors to format things so that they don't break Google Reader?


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:08 PM
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Yeah, 35 made me want to put my eyes out.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:10 PM
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PGD, even after you leave office, the Powers of POTUS loom large ... in the form of Secret Service agents with unregistered handguns and no compunctions.


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:11 PM
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66

63: I will look into that.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:16 PM
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I have that fucking song going through my head now...Hill-a-ry, you and me! Hill-a-ry, you and me!....AGHHHH!


Posted by: PerfectlyGoddamnDelightful | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:16 PM
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Richardson on the ticket would bring Obama foreign policy cred, reassure leery Hispanic voters, and secure the swing state of New Mexico. Strategically, he's a strong pick.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:17 PM
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I miss Edwards already, though. Obviously, I like him for VP and am hoping whatever's going on with Elizabeth is such that he could still be in the campaign.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:20 PM
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I think Edwards was the best candidate we had, pretty much. McCain will be tough.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:20 PM
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66: Thanks. Then I could read you (over there) again.

68: That's why I'm surprised he dropped out in the first place. He knew he held a decisive body of electorate, so there's no reason he drops out that early unless he has something or other up his sleeve. (Edwards, of course, probably thought the same thing, but the way the election is breaking, it looks like Richardson was right.)


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:21 PM
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I was surprised Richardson dropped out so early too. I thought he'd stick around at least until the NM primary.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:22 PM
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72: Makes me think something's already in the bag, both with Clinton and Obama. To both's credit, it'd be the right thing to do if they did it.


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:24 PM
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71.2 - Maybe he dropped out because he was broke?


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:28 PM
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75

Cult of Obama

Sara Robinson at Orcinus. Y'all might like this one.
Trust me.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:34 PM
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"What," Bill Clinton reportedly asked Richardson, "isn't two Cabinet posts enough?"

I think it's fairly obvious that what Richardson really wants is to be a Special Emissary of the Klingon High Command. Now if Bill could make that happen--well, then, who knows what Richardson might do for him?

Offhand, though I'm sure there are many, I can't think of any untakebackable things that I've done or said.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:41 PM
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75: Clearly the Cult has fooled Sara into becoming just another deluded fascist Obamabot, eh Bob? Tragic.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:46 PM
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The fact that 70 may be true is very depressing.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 9:48 PM
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Maybe he dropped out because he was broke?

That was my mom's explanation. Sounds plausible enough.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 10:21 PM
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75: Well, I guess merely being patronizing is better than being a complete fucking troll. Yay Sara.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 10:23 PM
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I think Edwards was the best candidate we had, pretty much.

Why? How does that follow from winning one primary in two presidential bids?


Posted by: Gabriel | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 10:32 PM
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How does that follow from winning one primary in two presidential bids?

His appeal is to white men, who are the only voters who count.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 10:38 PM
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78:I'm depressed about Edwards, but I don't know that he was the best candidate.

I also did read SEK's pist, and the comments.
Three points, and I'll try to keep them short.

1) Some commenter somewhere, re housing bubble, told his dot-com story. He knew it was a bubble in 96, 97, 98, 99, and then he knew it wasn't a bubble and lost $300k of pension money.

2) Millions to tens of millions have recently bet their life savings on perpetually rising housing prices. Multiple, of not most, banks and finance companies with the best analysts in the world are in deep trouble.

3) I hang out at the stock trading sites where impressive arguments, evidence, statistics are as common as confessions of making bad decisions based on emotion. Insults are thrown back and forth daily, "You fool, look at this chart. I can't believe you're bullish." There is a sense of humour there, an acceptance that all the tools of reason are irrelevant as often than not because the markets and the world just won't fit the damn models.

I shouldn't really have to defend the thesis that people act irrationally. I understand it is easier to say that all those other people let the feelings overrule their reason than it is to admit that you yourself got sold the lemony car.

I guess I don't mind being called crazy, because I am. I really can't put my heart into marshalling evidence and argument into pretty pictures. It would be inauthentic. hypocritical, and deceptive. I do it sometimes anyway, cause I get lonely.

But there are rules and structure to unreason, and it is unreason that rules us. This is not a source of shame.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 10:47 PM
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His appeal is to white men, who are the only voters who count.

Except in South Carolina. Which, ironically, is the state he won.


Posted by: Michael | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 10:58 PM
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Also the state where he was born.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 11:00 PM
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He kept that quiet, though.


Posted by: Michael | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 11:10 PM
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83: I really can't put my heart into marshalling evidence and argument into pretty pictures.

Course not. Why bother when you can free-associate on the words "fascist," "cult" and "dictator" in complete absence of even a nod to any sort of facts, current or historical? "People act irrationally." It's not your fault.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-13-08 11:24 PM
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87:Dictatorship in History and Theory: Bonapartism, Caesarism, and Totalitarianism ....open on my desktop

How many sentences do I get for my summary? But This is what I came back to link.

GRAND FORKS, N.D. - The wheat market moved into historic ground Friday in North Dakota and Minnesota, as short-term demand from mills pushed prices up to $20 a bushel at one elevator in an after-hours scramble. Most elevators in northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota posted prices of $16.70 to $17.30 Friday, according to an Agweek survey; that's four times as high as a year ago and the highest figures ever seen...

Based on fertilizer prices, wheat prices are expected to at least double again in a year. The apocalypse is here.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:09 AM
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Based on fertilizer prices, wheat prices are expected to at least double again in a year. The apocalypse is here.

Because we spend so much of our national income on wheat? Last I checked, growing wheat was such a bad business to be in that we had to shovel tons of money at farmers to keep them doing it.

Shouldn't you be out burning shit down to protest Obama's inevitable surrender to Republicans?


Posted by: water moccasin | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:18 AM
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re 82 The strategy of the Edwards campaign was to combine his appeal to low information conservative dems (aka working class whites) with high information liberal dems (aka the type of people who hang out on this blog). Unfortunately the latter decided that charisma, oratorical skills, and pretty phrasing matter more than actual policy. Add the fact that with Obama in he was simply shut out of any black votes and he had no chance.

For the person who was asking why he dropped out - money plus the fact that he had no chance.


Posted by: tkm | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:21 AM
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89:Too busy stocking up on marshmallows, Hersheys and graham crackers.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:23 AM
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Bob, commodity grain prices are irrelevant to even poor Amerians. If you're a third world slum dweller trying to live off two bucks a day it really sucks, but that's not America.


Posted by: tkm | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:24 AM
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Just think of how much bread you can beak with a fricking bushel of wheat - with a wholesale price of four hours of net Walmart pay.


Posted by: tkm | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:26 AM
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94

You guys sure seem to like getting trolled.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:27 AM
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I mean, a comment that begins with a link to a book about dictatorship then talks about how rising wheat prices portend the apocalypse? What can possibly be accomplished by responding to that?

Pretty damn entertaining, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:36 AM
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92:What, now I have to link to Rittholz on food inflation? He has been screaming for a couple years. Help me, I don't understand how wheat prices quadrupling doesn't effect bread, macaroni, ramen noodles and is irrelevant to even poor Americans.

There's a new type of rust attacking wheat crops in Asia and Africa--there are no strains currently available resistant to the stuff and it is propogated by air-borne spores and moving.

I like bread, pasta and tortillas too and I buy mine the same place you buy yours. While I want to make money, I don't want to see people go hungry due to food shortages.

...comment from wheat farmer at Agonist.
Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:36 AM
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83: Plenty of us knew it was a bubble just fine. We took the money anyway. (I'm still paying my rent with it).

On preview: mmm..wheat.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:39 AM
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96 - It doesn't matter because the wholesale grain cost is a small portion of the retail cost of food.


Posted by: tkm | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:42 AM
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95:One of the points of the book is that dictatorship, used kinda in the Roman sense, is a consequence of democracy under stress. I would have thought the connection would have been obvious to anyone with even a minimal knowledge of the French, 1848, and Russian revolutions, or the rise of the Fascists during theGreat Depression.

Now you wanna nitpick about Russia not being a democracy, well Kerensky got rejected, and after five or so more years of some level of participatory government, Stalin gained control.

Ya know, it really is never about the facts, evidence, or arguments. It is always about the messenger, charisma, social bonding. It's always style, not substance.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:52 AM
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Kobe is made of wheat.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:54 AM
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No, that's udon. Kobe is made from buckwheat.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:56 AM
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96:Milk Prices Rising to Record Levels 2/13/08 I think

Milk prices hit a record last month in the United States, where consumers paid an average $3.80 a gallon, compared to $3.29 in January, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It forecasts prices will remain high throughout the year.

Whatever.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 1:01 AM
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Unforced error. Point: w-lfs-n.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 1:01 AM
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I would have thought the connection would have been obvious to anyone with even a minimal knowledge of the French, 1848, and Russian revolutions, or the rise of the Fascists during theGreat Depression.

With the exception of Weimar.... huh? Non-democratic regime under stress - revolution - turmoil - restoration or new dictatorship. And look at the various democracies during the Great Depression - most remained democracies.


Posted by: tkm | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 1:08 AM
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Speaking of takebacks - I'd think the Koreans might want to rethink this That's going to be one ripe smelling trip.


Posted by: tkm | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 1:11 AM
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A vote for McCain is a vote against having the media choose our president. You don't want that, do you?


Posted by: Gaijin Biker | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 2:14 AM
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re: 104

It's pretty hard to think [again with the exception of Weimar] of any that didn't remain democracies. Italy wasn't a democracy but Mussolini predates the Depression. The various former Austro-Hungarian nations either remained democratic until the Germans invaded, or were never really democracies in the first place.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 3:05 AM
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I was sort of hoping that the thread would turn to untakebackable things people had said in their own lives.

I'll indulge you with one that perhaps doubles as a cautionary tale about drunken hookups. Once upon a time, after an evening of heavy imbibing, I wound up going home with a friend of a friend. In the course of things, he looks down at me amorously and says something like, "Wow, you and me, who'd have ever thought -- how did this happen?" I looked back up at him sweetly and responded, without a moment's hesitation, "Um, perhaps because we're both completely plastered?"

I'm actually surprised I can't think of others as I know I can be particularly vicious and hurtful when I am really, really angry. I suppose once I'm angry enough to say something truly nasty, I am also angry enough to not really want to take it back.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 5:08 AM
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re: take-backs

A friend once teased me in front of my then (female) flat-mates: alleging that I was bound to be trying to pick them up, and asking them if any of them had slept with me yet. It was mildly nasty, but more awkward because I didn't really know the flat-mates well enough yet for that sort of teasing to be comfortable.

So, I tore the shit out of him. Mentioned that he seemed to have put on weight, speculated that the reason he was saying this stuff was because he was too fat, socially awkward and ugly to ever get laid himself so was vicariously living off me, etc. It was pretty nasty and unpleasant stuff. And almost as soon as I said it, I wish I could have taken it back as he really wasn't the sort of guy who could take that sort of slagging -- much too vulnerable and insecure.

He was out of order, but he didn't deserve the thermonuclear response.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 5:42 AM
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Look, can we dispense with this stupid "cult" meme? Barack Obama is no more the object of a cult of personality than Eugene McCarthy was. He's a relatively non-despicable, relatively anti-war, relatively New Deal-liking politician who's a better orator than his competitors. This is not Paris in 1848, nor Russia in 1917. This is a hegemonic world power that happens to occasionally present its subjects with a choice between absolute capitulation to vicious neo-liberal cynicism and a slightly softened version thereof. Just like I always do, I've voted in the direction that I hope will provide some modicum of extra space for those comrades who are actually trying to make real societal change from the bottom up. I'm not holding my breath for any great payoff, but I'm certainly not going to waste my time crawling back to the same people who've kicked me in the teeth most often and most severely and beg for another booting.

Anybody who uses "cult" and "Obama" in the same breath is a liar or an ignoramus or both. Horseshit!


Posted by: minneapolitan | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 6:01 AM
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109: I've got a couple of stories like that -- I was taking shit, took the gloves off in response, and hit back harder than I meant to, but nothing that I really regret all that much long term. I did learn the important life lesson that, giving each other shit or no, making fun of a teenage boy's genitalia is a poor idea if you also have kind of a crush on him. He did stop giving me a hard time, and we stayed friendly, but I'm pretty sure that conversation closed off future dating options.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 6:10 AM
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109:

So, how many did you sleep with?


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 6:11 AM
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I've said my share of stupid and insensitive things. I tease entirely too much. I have crossed the line more times than I care to remember. Not out of viciousness, because I am not a very vicious person. My regrettable comments have almost all been due to carelessness and not really thinking through before I said them.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 6:14 AM
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re: 112

None. I think that was partly what provoked the annoyance, I genuinely didn't have any designs on them, and was a bit worried that my friend was giving the impression that I did.

I did end up one mildly drunken night dancing in a cage with two of them in a gay club, but that's another story.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 6:21 AM
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So 110 is an example of the untakebackable, I gather.

I thought I had said some unforgivable things through being drunk and insulting someone'e profession (very high-powered social work; unintentional insult) and someone else's discipline (rhetoric and media studies; kind of intentional) but after several years of mutual awkwardness they seem to have forgiven me. I had always felt bad about it, but didn't realize just how bad until the euphoria of not-having-them-mad-at-me really hit.

...wait, shouldn't we be out buying wheat futures or something? If the general doom is inevitable, we should either be frivolling wildly or trying to profit off of it, I assume.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 6:28 AM
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88: wheat prices are expected to at least double again in a year. The apocalypse is here.

And of course, Obamabots are the threat, not the far right wing that has long demonstrated actual fascist tendencies and potential. No, no, no, it's okay, Bob. "People act irrationally." You don't have to be responsible for what you say or making any sense whatsoever. You're just the adorable crazy guy.

108: "Um, perhaps because we're both completely plastered?"

This is awesome, what a great friend-sex line. He wasn't charmed by this?

Untakebackable. There was the time in high school when, hanging out with a friendly acquaintance, he pulled out the hoary old "you're the whitest black man I knew" pseudo-compliment and I threatened, without a trace of humour, to punch him in the mouth. We were never quite as friendly after that. I think that's about as close as I come.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 7:42 AM
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90 sounds about right. However, since the press doesn't like Edwards for some reason, he'd be a lot less likely to win the primary even if it was just him vs. Hillary.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 8:31 AM
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90: Unfortunately the latter decided that charisma, oratorical skills, and pretty phrasing matter more than actual policy.

Edwards excelled Clinton on all these fronts, yet she's still in the race and he isn't. I think what you're trying to say is "a significant fraction of the latter decided that the usual 'safe' DLC bullshit was preferable to actual substance."


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 8:37 AM
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118: Yes, and the other significant fraction preferred charisma, oratorical skills, and pretty phrasing. Thus leaving about 10% for Edwards.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 8:41 AM
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119: If one assumes that there was a significant policy disparity between Obama and Edwards, which of course there wasn't. tkm is really peddling yet another version of the desperate, ridiculous "cult" meme.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 8:50 AM
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provide some modicum of extra space for those comrades who are actually trying to make real societal change from the bottom up

That's my program, too. Maybe we could get this printed up on bumper stickers, in capital letters with an exclamation point at the end for emphasis:

PROVIDE SOME MODICUM OF EXTRA SPACE FOR THOSE COMRADES WHO ARE ACTUALLY TRYING TO MAKE SOCIETAL CHANGE FROM THE BOTTOM UP !


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 8:55 AM
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Ya know, it really is never about the facts, evidence, or arguments.

Oh, I think you've been around enough that we're all aware of that.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 8:56 AM
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120: ?!?

I thought most of us agreed with me that the big policy disparity was between Obama/HRC and Edwards, not HRC and Obama/Edwards.

And now that Edwards is out there seems to be no policy disparity at all.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 8:59 AM
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I thought most of us agreed with me that the big policy disparity was between Obama/HRC and Edwards, not HRC and Obama/Edwards.

I think two things are being conflated. If you look at the rhetoric and policy proposals and people advising Obama (to the extent we've inquired about those people), it appears to be HRC/Obama, and then off a bit is Edwards. But if you look at past history, Obama appears to be to the left of HRC/Edwards. So it's not hard to put Obama more or less anywhere from HRC to Edwards on the continuum. I think Obama's a neolib, but I pretty much think that's all that's left at the moment, inc. Edwards. (And, as those are my tendencies, I'm fine with that.)


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 9:06 AM
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Things you can't take back: publishing a photo of a check from Hillary Clinton for President's bank account where the account number is clearly legible.


Posted by: mano negra | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 9:06 AM
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He wasn't charmed by this?

Charmed, no. I think he'd been hoping for something more along the lines of overwhelming passion, irresistible attraction, etc. But after an initial moment of apparent disappointment, he shrugged pragmatically, "Oh hell, I'll take that." I still feel very mean for having said it (true though it clearly was).


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 9:08 AM
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123: I'm not sure which "most of us" that is, but it isn't true. Edwards' major issues were poverty (on which Obama actually offered more substance), and health care, on which Obama's and Clintons' plans were extremely similar to Edwards' (as Krugman notes, because they basically built on his ideas).

The real standout on universal health care -- as in, the one who sounded like he was running in a sane country -- was Kucinich, not Edwards, but of course Kucinich was basically treated as a joke candidate. Let not the same people who dismissed him pretend that Edwards was drummed out of the race because of his Extreme Seriousness, is all I'm saying.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 9:09 AM
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Actually, most of my "untakebackables" are apologies. I tend to apologize for things I really shouldn't feel sorry for -- but by the time I realize it, it's too late. Somehow it just doesn't do it to say, weeks later, "You know, upon reflection, I'm really not sorry after all."


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 9:15 AM
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128: I think we've all been there.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 9:26 AM
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re: 128 and 129

Yes, often.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 9:58 AM
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DS, you know, I've been thinking that Krugman's gone over the top lately, but it's comments like yours that show he's got a point. Edwards was clearly to the left of both Obama and Clinton on domestic policy, hell, in this campaign even Clinton is running to his left there. It is true that pre 2005 Obama was to the left of Edwards, but he's moved sharply to the right, and Edwards to the left. And if you think that Obama's charisma and oratorical skills aren't a significant part of his appeal, I just don't know what to say. FWIW I voted for the guy over Clinton on foreign policy and the hope that he'll move to the left on domestic in office.


Posted by: tkm | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 10:10 AM
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131: tkm, the basis of my contention that all their health care plans are functionally similar, because based on Edwards', is a for-Chrissakes Krugman piece. I think Krugman is mostly right* that Edwards can be credited early on with pulling Obama and Clinton leftward on domestic policy (Obama's more specific attention to urban poverty is different, and the real reason that Edwards couldn't compete for black voters, who did not automatically embrace Obama). I think in the face of those facts, trying to pretend that there were significant policy differences between Edwards and Obama is disingenuous.

(* Krugman's subsequent criticisms of Obama vs. Hillary were valid as far as they went, which isn't as far as he seems to think, and his complaint that Obama didn't offer sufficiently populist rhetoric is basically silly.)


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 10:24 AM
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I think in the face of those facts, trying to pretend that there were significant policy differences between Edwards and Obama is disingenuous.

Which is to say, Edwards pushed the other candidates to emulate his ideas, which is to his credit, and good for him. But trying to pretend that he then lost the race because voters preferred style over substance is misleading at best. He lost because he influenced the substance of the campaign in a way that wound up painting him into a corner.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 10:26 AM
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OK, Team Clinton's "we will Burn Shit Down to win this thing" rhetoric has officially extinguished Tuesday night's moment of optimism. This is looking ugly.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 12:45 PM
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i'm glad i looked up smut
but it does not match the notakeback theme exactly
so my then best friend's then boyfriend got drunk at someone else's wedding which we all three were attending together and started to shout and cry r.! you are my only and true love etc to my great surprise and horror, it was not a joke
i never even suspected anything about his feelings so did not talk to both of them may be half a year, was so embarassed or what, despite meeting them everyday due to being classmates
which illustrates my unbelievable and regrettable stubbornness
my best friend being a better person and a prettier woman too, forgave him of course and now they have two lovely kids and we're still good friends


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 3:45 PM
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I've voted in the direction that I hope will provide some modicum of extra space for those comrades who are actually trying to make real societal change from the bottom up.

Could not agree more.

(I don't ask to take back my Nader vote in 2000, though it contravened this very wise principle. Voting in California means never having to say you're sorry.)


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 4:00 PM
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On more personal takebacks, I would not have tried on the letter jacket of the jerky quarterback's soon-to-be-ex, soon-to-kiss-me girlfriend in the tenth grade. He never knew I did it.

It stemmed from garden-variety nerd-jock resentment, and once donned it held very little power at all. I knew he did not either, and I felt ashamed.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 02-14-08 4:04 PM
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