Re: The Next Al Gore

1

It's a fake. But a cute fake. You knew that, right?

The real Sarah Palin either knows where the VP lives, or wouldn't be dumb enough to say she doesn't on the goddam internet. The real Sarah Palin knows whether Supreme Court hearings are mandatory for vice presidents.


Posted by: Nápi | Link to this comment | 08-29-08 10:13 PM
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Thanks, Nápi. You're a big help.


Posted by: Tom | Link to this comment | 08-29-08 10:27 PM
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1: Haha, Becks fooled you! (I bet, anyway.) You thought she didn't know! But she didn't fool me! (Unless I'm wrong.)


Posted by: pdf23ds | Link to this comment | 08-29-08 10:52 PM
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The real Sarah Palin either knows where the VP lives, or wouldn't be dumb enough to say she doesn't on the goddam internet.

Exhibit A: She named her oldest son "Track", 'cause he was born during track season.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:56 AM
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Too bad Michael Palin wasn't born in the U.S. He has a lot of international experience.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:13 AM
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Somebody needs to mail Nápi the URL for Standpipe's blog.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:31 AM
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Once again, this is Standpipe's blog now, Apo.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:42 AM
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You're up early, Brock. You have little kids or something?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:46 AM
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Exhibit A: She named her oldest son "Track", 'cause he was born during track season.

The version I heard was that he was conceived on the track. Heh.

The real story!:

ABC's Jan Crawford Greenburg reports: It wasn't until Sunday night that John McCain, after meeting with his four top advisers, finally decided he could not tap independent Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut to be his running mate. One adviser, tasked with taking the temperature of the conservative base, had strongly made the case to McCain that it would be a disaster for the party and that the base would revolt. McCain concluded he could not go that route.[...]
But Pawlenty's flaw -- what cost him the VP -- was that he would not have stirred things up. He was safe, and McCain was not inclined to take the safe route. The campaign secretly flew Palin into Dayton last night. [Wednesday, I think.] She and McCain met privately for a couple of hours. McCain concluded she would "shake up the system" and was "a maverick," qualities he believed Lieberman would have brought to the ticket. But she also would appeal to conservatives -- which Lieberman most certainly would not have done. After their meeting, McCain concluded he was comfortable with his choice.
Forget about her! Surely the above is proof, proof I tell you! that McCain is guy I want with his finger on the button. Because he's, ya know, experienced.

max
['He solidified the R base, but not his base. Frum is not happy.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:00 AM
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8: you know, I hadn't put two and two together, but I think you might be on to something here.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:05 AM
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||
Dammit, why isn't there more stuff on the internet on the weekends? I've only been up for about 90 minutes and I've already read the whole thing.
|>


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:11 AM
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There's this.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:15 AM
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12: Yabba Dabba Doo!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:30 AM
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Apparently Pawlenty's bridge-falling-down thing just made him one of the Republican gang and wasn't regarded as a negative.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:50 AM
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I like this entry. I'm glad we've got her caricature down this early. It will be harder to shake. Also, it seems like something Amy Pohler can totally rock with.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:33 AM
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11: As the father of a newborn, let me give this a hearty Amen. I finally get up to my work computer, and I'm already sick of staring at the screen.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:39 AM
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Praise Jesus! A new mouseover.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:42 AM
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Praise Jesus! A new mouseover.

New mouseover text.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:51 AM
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I'm glad that the parody site isn't sexist and shit.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:52 AM
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I'm starting to think that the Palin pick is like the William Miller pick in 1964, a sign that the Republicans have given up. Apparently Romney, Lieberman, and Pawlenty were willing to run, but McCain and Rove decided that they couldn't win. Palin seems like an incredibly long shot and I don't see how anyone could feel good about actually having her in the Presidency. She's McCain's brain fart.

Apparently the Palin groundswell started on the internet, here. A college sophomore of the familiar Young Republican type started promoting Palin a year and a half ago, when she'd just barely been inaugurated. The wise Harvard PhD Bill Kristol picked her up, and the rest is history.

On the other hand, anyone with Google can find out that she's in the midst of a scandal. Sort of a small-time, small-town scandal, but that's not a good thing when your resume is already very thin.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:07 AM
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Comments on Tyler Cowqen's site are amusing.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:15 AM
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Jesus, how many examples do people need to finally admit that prediction markets are completely useless at predicting anything?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:23 AM
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Sexist or no, that shit is hilarious.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:39 AM
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Sort of a small-time, small-town scandal

Well, remember where she's governor of. As gruber just remarked, the crowd that watched Obama's speech in Denver was 1/7th the size of the entire population of Alaska.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:01 AM
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Well, tiny Alaska did give us the Bridge to Nowhere, though they did that via the Fed -- a mere governor has limited scandal oomph. But the point is, she tried!


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:09 AM
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I think it is totally fair to make fun of her for being stupid, on the grounds that she doesn't believe in global warming.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:11 AM
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The reaction wasn't so rosy elsewhere. State Senate President Lyda Green said she thought it was a joke when someone called her at 6 a.m. to tell her the news.

"She's not prepared to be governor. How can she be prepared to be vice president or president?" said Green, a Republican from Palin's hometown of Wasilla. "Look at what she's done to this state. What would she do to the nation?"


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:16 AM
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21:

Sarah Palin is the kind of woman most feminists- hell, most AMERICANS, male or female- wish they were: self-made, sportscaster, beauty-pageant winner, Mayor, Governor on an anti-corruption ticket, wife, and mother. She makes Michelle Obama look like... well, a Equal Opportunity hire.

The class just oozes from the right, doesn't it?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:17 AM
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27 is pretty impressive.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:17 AM
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She has a very high voice, a not-ready-for-prime-time voice. I'm now unable, albeit for different reasons, to listen to either member of the Republican ticket. Maybe they'll campaign using only pantomime. Now that would be incredibly mavericky.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:22 AM
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North Pole Republican Sen. Gene Therriault, who leads the minority caucus in the state Senate, said Palin has executive experience and he thinks she's ready for the job.

Santa's endorsement is onnthe way.

"I think it's a great opportunity for the state of Alaska," Therriault said. "For us to get our message out in what the state has to offer to the nation."

Our Marketing Alaska VP.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:23 AM
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Interpretive dance, for that extra dollop of maverickosituditaciousness.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:24 AM
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They've lost Ari's vote. They're doomed.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:26 AM
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Not to make invidious comparisons, but they also seem to have lost Maureen Dowd.

You may laugh, but Dowd is a key representative of the moderate independent bozo demographic.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:28 AM
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This is the press McCain was hoping for? From the requisite what-this-pick-says-about-McCain article:

1. He's desperate. Let's stop pretending this race is as close as national polling suggests. The truth is McCain is essentially tied or trailing in every swing state that matters -- and too close for comfort in several states like Indiana and Montana the GOP usually wins pretty easily in presidential races. On top of that, voters seem very inclined to elect Democrats in general this election -- and very sick of the Bush years.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:30 AM
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I think it is totally fair

I don't think the primary concerns are about fairness.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:30 AM
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Putting a chick on the ticket was a guaranteed way to lose Dowd's vote.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:30 AM
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34: And while I find Politico hacktastic, I'm told that nearly every political journalist in the country reads it religiously. Still, I wouldn't say that they've lost my vote just yet. Remember, Obama's black.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:31 AM
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She left the little town of which she was mayor $20 million in debt, and only kept AK out of debt by imposing windfall taxes on oil companies, something that BHO proposes.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:32 AM
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Yeah, but she's a pioneer! A maverick! And hott!


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:34 AM
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39: You know what's interesting? Wingers aren't very good at governing. I mean, their pet policies, as a general rule, are really lousy and can be counted on to make things worse not better. The same is true for Republicans generally. And so, until Jesus actually arrives to save the day, the American people would be smart to vote Democratic.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:35 AM
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How could she leave something with 8,000 people $20 million in debt?


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:36 AM
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until Jesus actually arrives to save the day

Aw, but I'll miss you when that happens!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:37 AM
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How could she leave something with 8,000 people $20 million in debt?

Ask the trustees of Antioch College.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:37 AM
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42: The supercolliding superconductor was pricey. But worth it. She loves science that much.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:37 AM
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42: Yeah, apparently a 3k per person debt.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:38 AM
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43: You say that now. But you'll be off gallivanting with a floppy-haired officer. You won't even remember my name.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:40 AM
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37 is funny.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:42 AM
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Here is a mention of the 3k/per person debt at (sigh) Politico. Most of the debt seems to come from an incompetently managed sports arena project, about which one can find a Kos diary here.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:47 AM
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I'm bad at math [insert Larry Summers joke here], but I don't understand how $3k/person in a town of less than 8,000 equals $20 million in debt.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:52 AM
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36: Like I said in an earlier thread, there are still some things we won't stoop to, we aren't Karl Rove. In this case, I'm happy to use the bimbo stereotype to bring out the ways she is stupid, the same way I was willing to use the frat boy stereotype to bring out the ways GWB was stupid. I don't want to say that simply being pretty or being a beauty queen makes you stupid or ineligible for office. But by denying global warming, she has totally opened the door for all stupid attacks.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:53 AM
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she has totally opened the door for all stupid attacks

Attacking her as a bimbo, rather than on the merits, would indeed be very stupid, rob -- not to mention totally out of character for you, right? Fortunately, I don't think you'll be charged with coordinating the Obama camp's rejoinders to the Republican convention.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:55 AM
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50: Well, it would equal about 24 million in debt, but apparently there are closer to 7000 people in Wasilla.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:58 AM
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53: Fair enough. I think I've been to Wasilla. It was very beautiful. And it didn't look any more debt-ridden than other small towns in Alaska. So I'm not sure what people are complaining about.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:02 AM
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Attacking her as a bimbo, rather than on the merits, would indeed be very stupid, rob -- not to mention totally out of character for you, right?

I'm envisioning an attach that combines the merits with the stereotype to create the funny. Perhaps I am compromising my feminism here. This is certainly a less principled feminist stance than I was taking yesterday.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:03 AM
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I'm bad at math

Yes you are.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:03 AM
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I don't want to say that simply being pretty or being a beauty queen makes you stupid or ineligible for office.

I am relieved to learn that you do not want to say that.

Anyway, she doesn't fit the bimbo stereotype. Bimbo stereotype = enter a beauty pageant, marry a state governor. What Palin has done: entered a beauty pageant, become a state governor.

But it's okay. Obama is going to win.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:03 AM
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This is certainly a less principled feminist stance than I was taking yesterday.

We all sell out every day, Rob.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:04 AM
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Perhaps I should just stick with saying that I thought it was mean when people on the other thread were calling Palin "Miss Congeniality" and stuff, but that I think the Sarah Palin Blog is really really funny.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:13 AM
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Yeah, she's really not coming across as a bimbo. I know, I know, she was in a beauty pageant in high school. (And in high school, you were...?) She just seems like a garden-variety conservative Christian. Dumb on science, dumb on rights, with a bit of Alaskan nuttery thrown in.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:14 AM
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Sarah Palin is the kind of woman most feminists- hell, most AMERICANS, male or female- wish they were: self-made, sportscaster, beauty-pageant winner, Mayor, Governor on an anti-corruption ticket, wife, and mother. She makes Michelle Obama look like... well, a Equal Opportunity hire.

Combine this with a guy who couldn't commit to a relationship until he finally hooked up with a BEER HEIRESS, and you've got the sitcom American dream, yuk yuk!@


Posted by: Satan Mayo | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:17 AM
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56: I briefly majored in physics in college. It didn't work out.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:19 AM
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I don't think that people call Yulia Tymoshenko a bimbo even though she's way hotter than Palin. Or Benazir Bhutto.

They are/were heavies -- important, rather corrupt players. With Palin the problem is that she's pretty lightweight in everything except the looks department. It's hard not to say something about that.

Again, I don't recognize small-town mayor as relevant experience, and even as a small-town mayor she seems to have overreached.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:21 AM
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62: Ari, you are like the 3d historian I know who started out as a physics major.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:22 AM
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Actually, the 'kind of woman most women wish they were' thing doesn't seem to be all that far off, except for the obvious point that Michelle Obama's life looks pretty sweet, too. Calasis #3, who doesn't really care about politics, was watching the news yesterday and excited about Palin, because, five kids and being governor and being pretty and being picked for VP? Sounds pretty cool. She'll vote for Obama anyway, on the grounds that 'pretty cool' doesn't beat 'the other guys fucked up so bad they made it impossible for a white man to become president', but it's interesting how compelling she thought Palin was.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:24 AM
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64: I actually wanted to study philosophy (shameless pander to w-lfs-n and others here), but I found the reading too difficult. History has the word story right there in their in the subject heading!


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:24 AM
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Again, I don't recognize small-town mayor as relevant experience, and even as a small-town mayor she seems to have overreached.

Look, say you've been elected mayor of Cullowhee, North Carolina and you're hoping to become president of the US within a decade. The only way that's going to happen is if you become a celebrity of some kind, and breaking the world record for municipal debt is one way of using your office to accomplish that.


Posted by: peter | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:25 AM
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So this is great fun, too.
The Public Safety Commissioner who claims he was fired for refusing to fire Palin's ex-b-i-l has emails sent to him from Palin on the subject that he is giving to investigators. (Of course she's already been caught in a bald-faced lie on this subject.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:26 AM
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Every goddamn social science there is is infested with failed physicists. They're like one of those ethnic groups that's always taking things over.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:27 AM
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how compelling she thought Palin was

This makes me sad, but what doesn't, these days?


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:27 AM
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Not that there should be a pogrom or anything. Just a quiet warning to the physicists that they should keep a lower profile.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:30 AM
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54: I think I've been to Wasilla. It was very beautiful.

Wasilla is a Wal*Mart dominated exurban shithole with an Alaskan twist. (Just about every populated place on a road in Alaska is a shithole. Shitholes in surroundings so fabulous that they leave me weak with envy, but shitholes just the same.) Apparently about 35% of the workforce makes the 43 mile commute in to Anchorage.



Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:31 AM
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You know, it doesn't make me all that sad. Ignoring issues, 'rising star 44 year old governor whose husband takes care of the kids*' sounds pretty good. Calasis isn't terribly political, and she still managed to get to 'voting for Obama anyway.'

*I think the mother thing is important.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:31 AM
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72: Having now pulled out some old maps, yes, I've been there. And the weather was great the few days I was in and around Anchorage: mid to high 60s and sunny. It was breathtaking. Not the WalMart, which I don't remember, but the setting.

73: Her biography, absent her issue profile, is incredibly compelling.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:39 AM
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It's the pretty part being important and the part where it's not relevant that she's not actually any good at being governor, as well as the degree to which it really is a story of "she got picked!" rather than "she succeeded," that make me sad.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:40 AM
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I do appreciate the appeal of the mother thing, though. It's the Country Bunny story, after all, which I love.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:42 AM
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Ari, you are like the 3d historian I know who started out as a physics major.

I wonder how many go the other direction?


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:46 AM
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really this is all premature. we are going to have to see how see actually operates on the campaign trail. My impressions of her have done, like, five 180 degree turns since she was named, as new pieces of information get publicized.

One thing she's going to need to project is the idea that she is a "quick study." There was an NPR piece on Obama's brief stint on Wall Street. The angle on the story was that he walked into a job where he didn't know much, picked it up really quickly, but then left because he decided it wasn't for him. The idea that Obama is a quick study does a lot to counter the inexperience charge.

(Of course, I don't know if Obama is actually a quick study. But he has succeeded in projecting that image. )

(Also, why are people using Truman as an example of an inexperienced president who turned out to be ok. He made a catastrophically wrong decision about using the bomb.)


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:47 AM
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In fairness to my sister, nobody knew anything about whether Palin had been good at governor yesterday morning. We're still not all that sure, because she's only been governor for about nine minutes.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:49 AM
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I wonder how many go the other direction?

Perhaps the most influential physicist of his generation, for one.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:56 AM
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27 is a gold mine. That Lyda Green thing rights itself, but there's also:

State House Speaker John Harris, a Republican from Valdez, was astonished at the news. He didn't want to get into the issue of her qualifications.

"She's old enough," Harris said. "She's a U.S. citizen."

Also, Pat Buchanan went on the record yesterday saying that she was a fundraiser for him in 1996, which I'm sure is going to make a bunch of Jewish senior citizens in Florida very happy. This pick was a good way to shore up the base and win the news cycle, but I think it'll show itself to be a bad move in the long run. (On the other hand, if McCain concluded that none of the safe picks were going to close the gap for him, why not chose someone with a 30% chance of putting you over the top and a 70% chance of being an overall negative?)


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:59 AM
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rights s/b writes. I banish myself to the Bridge to Nowhere.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:00 AM
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He made a catastrophically wrong decision about using the bomb.

Should we have this fight? And if so, on what terms?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:01 AM
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Like I said in an earlier thread, there are still some things we won't stoop to, we aren't Karl Rove. In this case, I'm happy to use the bimbo stereotype to bring out the ways she is stupid, the same way I was willing to use the frat boy stereotype to bring out the ways GWB was stupid.

I think you're still referencing some sort of fairness metric, which I think is a mistake. We care about something like effectiveness for converting voters not already in one camp. A few of points:

1. It's not clear to me that the bimbo stereotype is equivalent to the frat boy stereotype, for more or less the same reason that I don't treat Insty's whining about it being OK to make fun of white males (or fathers or whatever he's on about for the day) as similar to complaints about shots at Obama's race (or women as crap at math, or whatever). The people under attack are differently situated.

2. There are types of attack that worry members of the same tribe even when they think it might be fair in the specific instance, because they worry about the attacks bleeding out of that category and being deemed appropriate in the general case.

3. Related to the above, there are types of attack best left to members of the same tribe.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:01 AM
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Dumb on science, dumb on rights, with a bit of Alaskan nuttery thrown in.

That's it. Though who knows how dumb she is, really, on, say, science? That's why I like Colbert's concept of truthiness. I have no doubt she's a practitioner of truthiness, Alaskan-style.

And though I certainly wouldn't vote for her, I damn well do admire a woman who enters a beauty pageant to win a college scholarship, and ends up first a mayor and then a state governor, while still finding time to bring forth five children and go moose hunting with her First Dude of the Northern Frontier husband.

(And the notion that this pick represents an "insult" to the women of America is really beyond funny).


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:02 AM
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Should we have this fight?

No.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:02 AM
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||
OT: I hear some dude made a really good speech or something like that the other day. Anyone know what that was about?
|>


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:04 AM
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I think that the "Hail Mary" theory and the "No Hope" theory overlap. They're a little different, though. Goldwater's William Miller was an unexciting nonentity who agreed with Goldwater and was willing to run, after the big names had all turned the VP nomination down. In this case McCain could have gotten a big name, but Rove convinced him he couldn't win with Lieberman or Romney, and McCain thought Pawlenty was too tame.

My bet is that without the pretty good chance of McCain croaking, Lieberman and Romney would have been much less interested.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:05 AM
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Also, because these aren't my posts, I feel only slightly embarrassed noting that people can look here and here for more on Palin.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:06 AM
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86: But I'm sure we could have a productive and fruitful discussion and that everyone would walk away feeling good about themselves.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:08 AM
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(And the notion that this pick represents an "insult" to the women of America is really beyond funny).

I disagree.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:09 AM
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And the notion that this pick represents an "insult" to the women of America is really beyond funny

I agree with 'women of America.' Conservative women are going to love it. I disagree that it's not insulting to younger Clinton supporters, who are pretty much all over the Internet wondering if McCain thought they wouldn't notice the whole pro-life thing.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:16 AM
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Yeah, certainly the idea that HRC voters care more about plumbing than issues is insulting.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:18 AM
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93: One reasonable (it seems to me) reading is that plumbing is one of the issues, and might reasonably be prioritized over the others.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:23 AM
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care more about plumbing than issues is insulting.
i'm with MC, it's great that a woman, young mother one of the common people can raise to govern
and if you are a feminist you'd if not to support, then at least not insult her calling her pick insulting


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:26 AM
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94: I think that assuming that HRC voters care only about her gender and not her lifetime devotion to a certain core set of issues is insulting. As insulting, say, as the GOP's running of Alan Keyes against Obama in the IL sen. election.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:31 AM
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Should we have this fight?

Which fight? Whatever fight, absolutely yes. Always.

93:Cite. Show me where McCain said that.

As I said, I think it is more about the base than PUMA's, although the wingnut base will get even more excited about sticking it to HRC & Dems with a woman.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:32 AM
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44 is funny if slightly cruel.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:33 AM
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"Does Jesus have a baby sister?"

Does anybody remember Dory Previn? The wife conductor Andre dropped for Mia Farrow, and a very smart/funny/feminist songwriter of the early 70s.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:36 AM
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Maybe she's the next Kobe.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:37 AM
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The veep choice was foolish, because they can't help candidates much, but they can hurt them. It probably won't matter that much though.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:38 AM
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As insulting, say, as the GOP's running of Alan Keyes against Obama in the IL sen. election
i don't know who is Alan Keyes, looks a black man
how is it insulting, that a black man should run against another black man? or that Obama is above that? how is it different if someone else, someone white according to your logic, were running
the word insulting is insulting


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:41 AM
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96: I think at least one of those core issues was the promotion of women up the ladder of power, and so it becomes an issue of ordering and weighting those issues. (And I certainly don't think this was pitched to all or even most HRC voters.)


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:41 AM
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Those Obama/Keyes debates are pretty fun to watch. You can just see how Obama's barely able to mask his outrage and contempt at that point. He's much better at it, now.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:46 AM
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104: It is amazing to have watched him mature. He was on the Daily Show when he was first elected senator, and he got all wonkishly excited about a change in the tax code. Jon had to coax him into putting things in layman's terms.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:50 AM
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I think it is beyond question that the Palin pick was aimed in part at picking up disaffected HRC voters. McCain, who chuckled along at and approved of the question, "How do we beat the bitch?" and who opposed the Lily Ledbetter Act, and Sarah Palin, who wrinkled her nose at HRC's "whining" now have nothing but winged words for her historic struggle and 18 million cracks in the glass ceiling.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:50 AM
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And Here is Palin chuckling along as some Alaskan dj's call her colleague, a cancer survivor, "a cancer," and "a bitch," and make what is apparently a fat joke.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:53 AM
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As much as I love Obama's gesture at 7:32 here, it's probably best for him that he's learned to suppress it.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:56 AM
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Palin may have some potential to help w unattached female voters, but this would be equally true if Clinton never ran for president.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:57 AM
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108: Don't mock those who might accidentally have sex with their siblings, Bear! It's not funny!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:59 AM
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Check out how, in the debate linked in 108, Obama gives what is basically an evasive answer, and the moderator pressed him on it. (He gave the same evasive answer again, but wev.) And a followup question! Good lord. It's almost as if it's not a stunt.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:59 AM
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111: Chicago Tonight does not fuck around, Ben. (I am serious. I loved that show.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:01 AM
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110: Indeed, it's potentially tragic.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:01 AM
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111: Actually, that gesture at 7:32 reminded me of you, Ben. But yeah, that interview is almost like a real interview in which the interviewer wants answers to questions. Who is this guy? Can he get a national job doing this?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:02 AM
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I'm afraid that Gustav could make a bigger difference than Palin.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:02 AM
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106:And I see all your points as about stroking the base.

I asrgue this in part in an attempt to undestand the wingnuts. Let us, hypothetically, posit that McCain had chosen a black man with Palin's qualifications, like Jindal.

Democrats would see it as an effort to take a few black votes from Obama. But Republicans would see it as just fucking with Obama & Dems. Democrats and wingnuts think differently.

The assholes are insular & tribal. They don't want you.. Republicans certainly could have had a more successful outreach to minorities & women, with just some slight concessions. They didn't want to.

This is a key difference, and one the Rethugs enjoy. Consider Obama's post-partisan outreach, compromises, caves. He, and most other Democrats don't understand tribal identity (purity & loyalty) and wouldn't approve if they did.

No Palin is not about picking up Democratic women. Repubs don't want them at their party.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:04 AM
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No question McCain is pandering. And? Lots of voters want, even expect, to be pandered to. I don't know, there's something a bit off to me about the idea that women, to the extent that they self-identify as a voting bloc (which they generally don't, btw), have to have such incredibly high standards of ideological and representational purity that the very act of promoting a woman who fails to meet these standards represents an "insult."

I mean, right now Palin is being held up to the standard of Hillary Clinton, against which standard she is deemed to fall well short. Fair enough. But during the primaries, I saw lots of op-eds and bloggy pieces from female Obama supporters who argued that the election of Hillary Clinton (now the standard, of course) would represent an actual setback to the women's movement because Hillary wasn't a "real" feminist, or a good-enough feminist or whatever. Well, okay, it was a tight race, and in the heat of the moment people will say all kinds of stuff in promotion of their own candidate. But still. That struck me as not a very winning strategy for women to pursue.

It's not that I don't agree about the importance of issues. But, as SCMT puts it, the promotion of women to power is in itself one of the issues. And even when I'm not prepared to actually support the candidate who has been put forth, I'm not going to be insulted by a move in that direction. If you want to make it normal to have women on electoral tickets, then the more women on electoral tickets the better.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:06 AM
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Actually, that gesture at 7:32 reminded me of you, Ben.

All it takes is that tiny gesture for me to show my contempt for you: the ignorant.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:07 AM
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outrage and contempt
at what? hopefully not at that he's debating a black man instead of debating someone white and more like respectable?
so he's matured since then, matured?
or was that Keyes involved in incest, so he draws universal contempt, then how it is possible for him to run for the senate
a yr ago maybe not many knew about Obama
like now people know not that much about Palin i guess
just if you believe in some principles, feminist or any other, shouldn't people stick to them
not changing those according to the party affiliations


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:08 AM
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114: That's Phil Poncé. He was a guest host on Lehrer all the time, but I think gave the gig up to do CT.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:10 AM
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119: Contempt at Keyes for being a moron, not for being black, of course. Keyes plays this really irritating "I have logic and philosophy on the side of my homophobia" line when he clearly doesn't have even the most basic grasp of logic.

Obama has matured since then, in that he can show a lot more grace in the face of his competitors' stupidity.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:11 AM
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Read, much of your confusion might be put aside with a quick Google search on Alan Keyes.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:12 AM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:12 AM
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118: I was hoping you'd link to that.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:13 AM
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have to have such incredibly high standards of ideological and representational purity that the very act of promoting a woman who fails to meet these standards represents an "insult."

It's not about ideology, it's about basic competence. She's almost comically underqualified. The Keyes comparison is fitting (Clarence Thomas works too).


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:13 AM
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If you want to make it normal to have women on electoral tickets, then the more women on electoral tickets the better.

I don't disagree with this in theory. But to the extent that SP is held up as a replacement for HRC (and this is certainly being done by the McCain campaign) that is insulting. And I have my doubts about how well SP will serve the end of normalizing the idea of women on national tickets. We'll see how ready for prime time she is soon enough, I suppose.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:14 AM
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incredibly high standards of ideological and representational purity

Here's the thing. The incredibly high standard here is 'not rabidly pro-life.' Palin doesn't even support a rape-and-incest exemption for abortion. I get the sense that that is not why most women were supporting Clinton.

While I think it's a great thing that we're to the point where having a woman on the ticket is considered an asset, I can certainly see why a Clinton supporter would feel annoyed by this. It's not just a pander, it's a pander that really misses the point.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:20 AM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:22 AM
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As a feminist voter, I'm not voting for the candidate's vagina; I'm voting for mine.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:23 AM
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129: I too am voting for Bear's vagina. Comity!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:23 AM
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...in the face of his competitors' stupidity.

If we continue saying wrong opinions are mistakes that can be educated away, we will continue to lose.
If we refuse to recognize wickedness when it slaps us in the face, we will lose.

Jim Crow & racism was not "stupid" and we didn't end it with the enlightenment of its proponents. We named it the evil that it was, and sent troops to end it.

Alan Keyes, and AK's homophobia, was/is not a mistake. It is a sin and should be a crime.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:25 AM
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When Republicans go after the women's vote or the Jewish vote or the black vote, they're not trying to win it. They're just trying to split off a bit. 20% of the black vote, 35% of the Jewish vote, or 47% of the women's vote would be enormous victories. (Your numbers may vary, but you get the idea.)


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:26 AM
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If you want to make it normal to have women on electoral tickets, then the more women on electoral tickets the better.

I think this is right. This might have been a poor choice for McCain--and I don't think that's clear at all--but it was a good choice (gawd help me) for America. If both parties have to compete for women on pro-ass-kicking-women grounds, that can only be good for both women and the country. And I think that both parties have now effectively conceded that being a woman isn't itself a bar to the highest office. That's good for America. And I assume that next round of elections, you'll see more women running for President on both sides. (If McCain loses, Palin might be one of the top draft choices.)

I think a lot of the disagreement here might be grounded in expectations. If you are more confident about women's chances in electoral politics in the future, you may feel the space to discriminate among women. (Obv. not a woman, but those expectations match mine.) If you're less confident about future chances, you might take wins where you can get them. I think (but obv. do not know) that some of the die-hard PUMA-types take the latter sort of view of the future.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:28 AM
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127,129

Okay, whatever. It's all about you.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:28 AM
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134: Actually, as an individual voter, my job is to choose the candidate who is best for me and my values, not yours, and not to flatter the candidate herself or make an empty symbol of her while she dismantles everything that matters to me.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:30 AM
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133: I don't like our future chances much if Roe gets overturned, is the thing. Maybe the PUMAs disagree, but I think not (they weren't anti-choice during the primaries.) Judging from history, women benefit from the presumption that they can control their fertility even if they never need an abortion.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:33 AM
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If AWB's vagina choose to run, I'll vote for it!

Or her? Are vaginas female?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:33 AM
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If McCain loses, Palin might be one of the top draft choices.

Do you really think this? Rob was talking of her as our first woman president yesterday, and this astounded me. I may be hugely naive, but this woman is deep, deep wingnut. As in is opposed to abortion, even in cases of rape and incest. As in is opposed to birth control -- even for married couples. Are we really that far gone?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:33 AM
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Unattached female voters are probably dispropartionally pro-life.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:34 AM
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There seems to be a bit of talking past each other on this. There is no contradiction between supporting more women running for high offices, questioning what this particular woman brings to the table as VP, and even finding the idea that she is held up as a `replacement' for Hillary for any voters as insulting since they have little in common except their sex.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:35 AM
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138: No.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:36 AM
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Unattached female voters are probably dispropartionally pro-life.

What are you basing this claim on?


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:36 AM
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139: By "unattached" do you mean . . . unmarried? Or?
Unmarried female voters are, I'd bet, largely in their 20s, and I'm guess again, more likely to be pro-choice.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:37 AM
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but this woman is deep, deep wingnut

I think she would probably run for the Republican nomination. And I think she would adapt her position on the issue, or her presentation of her position, as necessary.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:37 AM
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Are we really that far gone?

Ask me after November. It isn't so clear these days.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:37 AM
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And though I certainly wouldn't vote for her, I damn well do admire a woman who enters a beauty pageant to win a college scholarship, and ends up first a mayor and then a state governor, while still finding time to bring forth five children and go moose hunting with her First Dude of the Northern Frontier husband.

I agree. She's far better qualified in terms of character and temperament than Dubya was when he was tapped for the GOP presidential candidate. I disagree with her on a whole bunch of issues, and I'll be actively campaigning for her opponents, but she's clearly got intelligence and drive. I'm hopeful that her attacks on corruption were motivated by sincere concerns rather than being merely politically convenient ways to take out her opposition.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:39 AM
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No, I mean swing voters. But I'm not sure at all if I'm right.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:40 AM
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Most people, men and women, think abortion should be legal. Even among those who believe it should be illegal, very few actually desire it to be criminalized and enforced; they just don't want the government to act like it's "morally OK." My mom is a rabid pro-life activist, but her group "does not use the M-word" (murder), and is dedicated to providing social services to help women find doctors, get baby clothes and food and child care, rather than picketing clinics and yelling "slut." She claims those people are in the minority of pro-lifers.

I think she's wrong, in that voting for a pro-life candidate does not mean a candidate who, like her, thinks every woman should have the social support she needs to carry a baby to term and raise it. Pro-life candidates tend to be of the "fuck the sluts and ban BC" criminalization type.

All I'm trying to say is, not only are pro-lifers a minority, but they're not exactly the most ideologically homogeneous group, though they vote that way. It would be a great service to women everywhere to get them to realize that they and their candidates do not want the same things.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:45 AM
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The idea is that unattached voters are mostly low information, and that low info voters might be disproportionally pro-life. Also, socially conservative, fiscally leftwing voters are mostly female.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:47 AM
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"but they're not exactly the most ideologically homogeneous group, though they vote that way."

They don't.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:48 AM
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She's far better qualified in terms of character and temperament than Dubya was when he was tapped for the GOP presidential candidate.

She almost got subjected to a recall drive when she was mayor of her city of 8000 when she fired the police chief, head of the library system, and city historian for supporting her opponent, and she left the town $20 million dollars in debt after blowing huge sums on constructing a sports arena. The parallels writ small are actually kind of striking.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:49 AM
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150: I would like to see more evidence of this. My experience in the Baptist community has been that they don't care about taxes, wars, social policies, or any of that, as long as the candidate is rabidly pro-life. Somehow, every other position a pro-life candidate holds gets cast as the true and right Christian position, because the pro-life thing, for many of them, is the only litmus test. They're wary about McCain solely because he used to be kinda pro-choice.

These people should be ignored by Democrats.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:53 AM
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152, I should add, is especially about pro-life women. Palin sews them up because they don't give a shit about whether she's qualified in any other way.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:55 AM
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Posted by: - | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:55 AM
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Yes, but plenty of people who aren't part of the Christian right are still pro-life. You seem to be talking about the much smaller group that (like Palin apparently) oposses birth control and things like that.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:57 AM
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155: Really? I haven't met any pro-life non-Xians (or at least non-nominal-Xians). (I don't doubt that they exist, but all my experience of life has been among Xian wingers and then liberals, so I've missed out on the middle.) What's their reasoning?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:01 PM
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I damn well do admire a woman who enters a beauty pageant to win a college scholarship, and ends up first a mayor and then a state governor, while still finding time to bring forth five children and go moose hunting with her First Dude of the Northern Frontier husband.

I don't admire this woman who did that, any more than I admire Rick Santorum for his career trajectory.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:02 PM
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The Republican Party has changed.

History.

Reagan picks Bush to appeal to moderates.
Bush I picks Quayle because he doesn't give a shit.
Bush II picks Cheney as a partial insult.
McCain picks Palin to say:"Fuck you."

McCain couldn't care less what some pro-choice woman thinks.

Gilliard always used to say that Republicans didn't want to steal voters from their opponents, they want to depress the opponent's turnout.

Rovism isn't really new. Lenin & Hitler also knew that intensity and committment beats comity any day.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:04 PM
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What's their reasoning?

I'm pretty sure it's essentially the same as that of the Christians--it's a life--but without the Christianity. I wonder if there are any studies indicating how people with other religious background react to the issue of abortion. (I wouldn't be surprised if the religious among them were more anti-abortion than Christians as a whole, though that's based on nothing except burkas.)


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:05 PM
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I don't know, I just telling you what the polls say.

I believe real fundies are mostly well off, moderate social conservatives are mostly or disproportionally working class.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:07 PM
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I misread 156 a bit. I'm sure non-fundie prolifers are mostly christians, lots of them black or hispanic, the rest probably mostly white working class.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:11 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:12 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:16 PM
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Independents are more pro-choice than the average American and women are more pro-choice than men.


Posted by: beamish | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:21 PM
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151. Was this debt or deficit? It looks like these were bonds approved in the usual fashion. I found a story from 2006 that says she pushed for a tax increase to back the bonds. It also says the sports center cost 15m so it could well be wrong on other things.

Me, I am in favor of government debt to build parks, bike paths, sewer systems, and that infrastructure stuff. From a Norquist POV, she isn't so hot.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:22 PM
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I think that Norquistians are considerably less hostile to local than to federal spending. But the people back home are apparently not too happy with the debt load, at least some of them.

Oddly, Palin also raised taxes on oil companies. Poorly vetted? Or a maverick?

Alaskans are all crazy, and the ones who hate her are probably as crazy as the ones who love her.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:31 PM
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I think that Norquistians are considerably less hostile to local than to federal spending.

I don't think that's true. Wasn't there a case in Colorado--a governor raising or wanting to raise taxes?--that is apposite?


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:42 PM
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how it is possible to look at everything and judge everything depending on one problem only i don't get
that the whole abortion problem should be political is strange for me, it's a matter of discussion of the woman in need and a doctor, it's private imo
what one does with one's life is no other people's concern, the woman decides whether to give birth or that she can't afford to have a baby
but if she gives birth, she is responsible for the baby's well-being, it's so simple morally and practically
if the state tries to impose compulsory birth-control or bans abortion altogether, that's absolutely bad
just remove abortion and birth-control from the state regulated issues and it will get regulated itself like medically and socially imo


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:42 PM
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Welcome to the pro-choice position, read.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:46 PM
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i wanted to oppose to the 'she's pro-life she 's not worthy' opinion


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:48 PM
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165 - Regular old bonds, but Palin's mayoral administration dramatically mishandled the purchase of the land, costing Wasilla -- which has an annual budget of less than $7 million -- over a million dollars in legal fees and interest; notably the town is now having some budget shortfalls and has cut back on capital spending.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:49 PM
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ob was talking of her as our first woman president yesterday, and this astounded me.

I was following bob in thinking McCain would win and then die in office.

My political brain hasn't been working well for the past few days.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 12:51 PM
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i wanted to oppose to the 'she's pro-life she 's not worthy' opinion

It has nothing to do with her own choices not to have an abortion and everything to do with her desire to make abortion illegal for others.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:00 PM
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167: There was Bob Riley in Alabama, and the right never really forgave Huckabee either.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:01 PM
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171. Thanks for the links. That eminent-domain taking won't go over well with some GOPers. Sounds like a tangled case.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:03 PM
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Also, Bob's 116 seems right to me. If, as a woman, you find Palin's appointment an insult, that's because it was intended as such. But not to women generally, just to the women they know aren't going to vote for them anyhow. There are plenty of pro-life women who would like to see a female VP.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:15 PM
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Pat Buchanan seems to be sandbagging Palin, saying she was a fundraiser for him in 1996. If Obama's people aren't planning to carpetbomb South Florida with fliers about that, I'd be shocked.

I think the fact that the Washington Post talked to the guy fired in Troopergate -- and he has emails from Palin contradicting Palin's representation of the case -- is going to prove more of a problem of a problem than the Wasilla stuff. I know someone who lives in the bush, and some of the things she says about the corruption where she lives would curl your hair. That sort of thing seems to just be how small-town Alaska rolls. But I think the Troopergate thing just isn't going to play well in the harsh glare of national media if they pick up the story.

It rallied McCain's base and got Obama's speech off the front pages for the weekend, so as an immediate tactical move, it was a win. But when Mark Halperin and Fred Hiatt and Ogged's favorite paraplegic Charles Krauthammer start saying that the pick calls McCain's judgment into question, you have to wonder how much of his potential endgame McCain just sealed off.

People are saying that Palin is a good campaigner and good on t.v., so maybe it won't end up crippling McCain, but I still think this was a knock-over-the-board move made by someone who knows he's likely to lose.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:22 PM
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I like to wander over to Volokh to see what their commentards are thinking (together with the dumber posters, like Lindgren), and I get this. Nice.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:31 PM
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know someone who lives in the bush, and some of the things she says about the corruption where she lives would curl your hair.

Like what?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:36 PM
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The fact that she's a mother with an infant, particularly one who probably requires more time and work (I don't know how severe the baby's Down syndrome is) is going to be a big issue for some conservatives. She's "pro-life" enough to have the kid, and then is putting her career ahead of taking care of him.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:39 PM
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178: Good gravy. I'm surprised, but shouldn't be, since the Volokh commenters are still braying for Obama's Harvard transcripts, since they think it will prove he ought never have gotten in.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:41 PM
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178: Yeah, no matter how sexist I imagine the hard-right guys will be, they always surprise me. Never underestimate turds for bad smell.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:42 PM
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Like what?

I'm not actually comfortable providing details in a public forum, since she's on a public payroll and it could potentially get her in trouble. Nepotism, blithe disregard for basic tenets of civil service and election law are the big things, some genuinely weird-sounding interactions between her town and the local Native Alaskans.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:44 PM
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182: Sadly, we wouldn't have to look too hard to find men of any political persuasion who would at least joke about that.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:44 PM
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. She's "pro-life" enough to have the kid, and then is putting her career ahead of taking care of him.

I thought from the pro-life side, hordes of neglected or unwanted children were really not much of an issue. It's the symbolic politics of the family that matters: just as they don't really want to jail women who have abortions, they don't care too much about supporting women who choose to have the kid. At the level of national politics and policy, at any rate -- obviously there are a few loons with the former and a some charitable groups with the latter goals, but politically it's all about stigma and informal social control on the one side, and praise of mamas with no practical follow-through on the other.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:46 PM
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Ponnuru over at the Corner is claiming that Wassila has more people than Delaware. Zwa?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:53 PM
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185: Just because some anti-choicers might oppose welfare or subsidized day care doesn't mean that they don't also believe that a mother with young kids shouldn't work outside the home if she doesn't have to. (I should probably revise that to avoid the quadruple negatives, but.)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:54 PM
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Delaware is far more populous than Alaska.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:55 PM
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Ponnuru over at the Corner is claiming that Wassila has more people than Delaware. Zwa?

More real people. More pioneers. More mavericks.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:55 PM
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He fixed it already:

Update: oh how very embarrassing. A typo in the site I was looking at--totally wrong, by a factor of a hundred. Ouch.

Delaware's only about 200,000 people more populous than Alaska, though.

187: Yeah, to be honest I have no strong sense of how those kind of commitments translate into voting behavior.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:57 PM
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It's the symbolic politics of the family that matters: just as they don't really want to jail women who have abortions, they don't care too much about supporting women who choose to have the kid.

Stanley Cavell on abortion: "There is just one definite thing the convservative does not want done to this embryo, and nothing at all, or nothing more, he can want done for it. … Evidently I abhor other things more than I do abortion. What these things are is anything but original, yet important to specify. Unjust laws, for example; in this case, ones that discriminate against the poor and the uneducated and the abandoned. And, for example, the facts of unwanted or neglected children. That legal abortion is an alternative to unjust laws and neglected children is a matter not of good logic but of bad institutions. If, for a start, society were so arrnaged that adopting a child were no more difficult to cause than having a child; and that children were adopted only be people who will continue to want them and will care for them, and that there are enough such people to care for all the children who need them, and that one knows how to tell who these people are; and that any grain of shame or discrimination attached to bastardy or to the fact of unwed motherhood or to parents who give their babies up for adoption were itself seen to be shameful; and, supposing that contraception is known to be physically harmless to those who practice it, that it were conscientiously practiced; and that women were supplied with expert and congenial help during pregnancy and the father entitled, with the mother, to parent leave from work, so that abortion need be sanctioned only if, and would always be granted if, there were a definite and dire physical or psychological risk to the mother (the psychological risk should by now be confined to a terror of pregnancy and childbirth themselves); then my liberalism on the issue of abortion would fade, my abhorrence of abortion could flower … The upshot of these considerations is that the abortion argument, so far as it is based on the status of the human embryo, not only cannot but must not be won. Voluntary abortion is less bad than its criminalization is; but it is not therefore all right. The more terrible one takes it to be, the more terrible one should take its indictment of society to be. It is a mark of social failure, not unlike the existence of prisons." (Claim of Reason, pp 373–5)


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:58 PM
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He fixed it already

But how effing stupid do you have to be not to instantly know that Delaware has more than 8000 people in it?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 1:59 PM
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Pretty effing stupid.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:01 PM
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Volokh commenters are still braying for Obama's Harvard transcripts....

William Kristol and Jerome Corsi both are Harvard PhDs. The credential means nothing at all. (Point: McManus!)

Any Harvard grads here, BTW? I ask merely for information.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:02 PM
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I didn't get in.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:03 PM
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The Wasilla wikipedia site is already getting edited for lulz.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:04 PM
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191: There are any number of people who have a severe case of bastardy, and I ain't talkin' about their mommas. (Otherwise, that shit gives me a headache. Why not just say that if society actually supported children and mothers and contraception were universally effective he wouldn't be so keen on choice?)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:05 PM
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Wow, I didn't realize Wasilla is also an Ossetian god.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:05 PM
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Any Harvard grads here, BTW? I ask merely for information.

Yes, but you'll have to travel to the Louvre, the Vatican, and Rennes-le-Château to get the list... and the shocking revelation it contains.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:06 PM
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Any Harvard grads here, BTW?

Blume.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:07 PM
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Why not just say that if society actually supported children and mothers and contraception were universally effective he wouldn't be so keen on choice?

Because that would be clearer. I had a similar experience the other day trying to read some Bernard Williams. Smart guy, but Christ the endless throat clearing, preparatory qualifications, subordinate modifiers, stage-setting, and general pettifogging about.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:07 PM
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well, her career path is laid out for her.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:08 PM
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(Otherwise, that shit gives me a headache. Why not just say that if society actually supported children and mothers and contraception were universally effective he wouldn't be so keen on choice?)

I don't think that's what he actually thinks, for one thing.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:12 PM
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Has Blume graduated?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:12 PM
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Harvard grad school students are pretty different from the undergrads. BG was an undergrad, I believe, as was KR.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:13 PM
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201: You misspelled "w-lfs-n."


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:13 PM
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203: I had dinner with him once. The dinner where I was one of 3 who weren't MacArthur Fellows and the only woman not to have attended Brearley.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:14 PM
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He taught a class at chicago the year after I graduated :(


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:16 PM
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The dinner where I was one of 3 who weren't MacArthur Fellows

Including or not including Williams? If the former, hey, something to bond over! You didn't get one either, Bernie?

There were three places I didn't get admitted to for grad school that subsequently offered me a job, which at the time was quite gratifying in an I'm-a-shallow-person kind of way.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:17 PM
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Any Harvard grads here, BTW?

I think John knows perfectly well there are Harvard grads here.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:17 PM
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well, her career path is laid out for her.

German Lit Veterans For Wahrheit?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:19 PM
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Williams was neither a resident nor a citizen of the US, so it's not very surprising that he wasn't a MacArthur Fellow.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:19 PM
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re: 201

A friend of mine used to house-sit for Williams. They became quite close, I think. I never met him, unfortunately.*

The whole ex-fighter-pilot turned philosopher thing set the bar a bit high for everyone else as well. Bastard.

* and won't now, obviously.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:20 PM
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207 refers to Cavell, no?


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:21 PM
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Williams was neither a resident nor a citizen of the US, so it's not very surprising that he wasn't a MacArthur Fellow.

See, then the interaction would have had the added bonus of creating the potential for an embarrassing gaffe. What's not to like?


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:21 PM
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214: yes.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:21 PM
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The whole ex-fighter-pilot turned philosopher thing

I knew a guy who's career path was test pilot -> inventor of logic gates -> semi-retired ultra-rich dude with a jet. He always had much better stories than anybody else.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:22 PM
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You expect basic reading comprehension from a social scientist? Now I am living the reality of 215.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:23 PM
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I know a guy whose career path was college dropout -> computer dude -> college student -> computer dude -> confuser of "who's" and "whose", and he's got some pretty good stories himself.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:23 PM
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That last position listed in 219 didn't pay very well, but I hear the work was easy.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:25 PM
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Harvard grads: confess! We'll treat you fairly if you confess!


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:28 PM
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If you don't want to throw up, don't read the comments at Talk Left right now.


Posted by: blugh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:30 PM
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Anything in partiuclar that we should avoid?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:32 PM
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220: and the ladies love it.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:32 PM
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Nobody (or nobody but a wanker) ever confesses to being a Harvard grad, Emerson. When pressed, the non-wankerish Harvard grad will mumble something about having gone to school in Cambridge.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:33 PM
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222: Does that mean that if I do want to throw up (which I do), I should read the comments at Talk Left right now? I never quite got the hang of that "logic" thing.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:33 PM
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Nobody (or nobody but a wanker) ever confesses to being a Harvard grad, Emerson. When pressed, the non-wankerish Harvard grad will mumble something about having gone to school in Cambridge.

No, this is actually a form of the Higher Wankerism, because it is designed to elicit further questioning about where in Cambridge, Boston, MA, or New England the person went, and thus can the H-Bomb be dropped.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:36 PM
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the non-wankerish Harvard grad will mumble something about having gone to school in Cambridge.

I believe that the canonical, if perhaps less accurate, mumble concerns having gone to school in Boston.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:37 PM
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-


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:37 PM
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227: Yes.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:38 PM
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225: No, the "I went to school in Cambridge" tack is undoubtedly worse. It's rank condescension: "I know that my brilliance will likely make you uncomfortable, so I'll graciously avoid revealing the name of my alma mater."


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:39 PM
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Digby makes a case that Palin has some things going for her. While she's religious right, she also has a populist streak. For example, she hasn't been a rubber stamp for big oil.

Talkleft is doing a detailed examination.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:40 PM
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You know, some "I went to school in boston" types might be wankers or even Wanker Adepts, but I've known some people who say it not because they think that their brilliance will make people uncomfortable, but because they're aware that saying "I went to Harvard" actually can make people uncomfortable. It's not unreasonable, nor is it guaranteed pretension, to be aware of, and react to, that.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:41 PM
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Talkleft is doing a detailed examination.

This doesn't seem like a terribly detailed examination of Palin's stance on abortion, given that she's on record elsewhere as opposing abortion in any case unless the life of the woman is at risk.


Posted by: blugh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:44 PM
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Is there a secret handshake so, if you meet Corsi or Kristol, he knows you're one of his? I realize that you don't want to tell strangers.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:44 PM
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231 - I wonder if anyone's ever asked, "Oh, did you take a First?" on being presented with that little locution.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:44 PM
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Given that the only other university of any particular prominence in Cambridge is MIT, you aren't really buying yourself much.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:44 PM
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she hasn't been a rubber stamp for big oil.

This is sort of misleading. She raised taxes on oil profits, but is just about the most pro-drilling politician imaginable. Her position is based on getting as much money for the state of Alaska as possible from the oil companies.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:44 PM
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Given that the only other university of any particular prominence in Cambridge is MIT, you aren't really buying yourself much.

Which is why everyone I've ever heard has just said "Boston".


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:46 PM
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Blume concurs with 233, and adds that the reaction so reacted to is not hypothetical.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:47 PM
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238: right, what I gather is that she's pushing them to drill more than they want to.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:48 PM
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Couldn't she just say "Ohio State"? That would shut people up.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:49 PM
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239: yeah it makes a lot more sense. I should start saying "oh, I went to school in Boston." It's true, I did!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:49 PM
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237: Every once in awhile you might run into an alumnus/a of Cambridge College.

In all seriousness, though, ben's point is fair and I was being overly strident. A Harvard education is a cross to bear, even if it is a gilded and highly useful cross.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:51 PM
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237: Right. "Cambridge" is kind of a stupid response. ben gets it right in 233.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:51 PM
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Yeah, see if people ask where you go to school, they often, say, want to know where you go to school. So answering "Boston" would just lead folks to say, "Yes, but where in Boston?' And now you have made them ask not one but two questions in order to receive their answer.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:52 PM
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Yeah, see if people ask where you go to school, they often, say, want to know where you go to school. So answering "Boston" would just lead folks to assume that you're dodging their question and leave you alone.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:53 PM
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If you are smart enough to figure they are dodging the question, you are smart enough not to fall over in a faint when they answer Harvard.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:54 PM
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Actually, some people also ask where you went to school as a mere politeness or a conversation starter, and in fact aren't as interested in the answer as in hearing something that will stimulate further conversation. "Boston" actually works well for that purpose.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:56 PM
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If you are smart enough to figure they are dodging the question, you are smart enough not to fall over in a faint when they answer Harvard.

I'm not that smart. On more occasion than one, I now realize, I've been totally taken in by the Higher Wankerism.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:57 PM
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Anyway, I think part of the point is to avoid seeming overhasty to announce that you went to Hahvahd. If you initially put your interlocutor off, then even if they do press you, you can (fairly!) act is you've been pressed to say you've gone to Harvard. Obviously this too creates the possibility of new, more creative kinds of pretension, but there's nothing to be done about that. The real solution is not to attend Harvard in the first place.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 2:57 PM
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Yeah, see if people ask where you go to school, they often, say, want to know where you go to school. So answering "Boston" would just lead folks to assume that you're dodging their question and leave you alone.

So now I have make the inference you went to Harvard and tell myself not to ask any more because you are kindly sparing my feelings?


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:00 PM
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The real solution is not to attend Harvard in the first place.

Very true. A solution many of us stumbled into!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:02 PM
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249: But of course if your interlocutor is an academic type, he or she may wish to know exactly which institution you attended, because he or she may be comfortable making small talk about the character of the institution or who else was there at that time. So the answer, as always, is "know your audience."


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:02 PM
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I was on an airport shuttle once and this Where-did-you-go-to-college interaction happened between a hopeful guy and a good-looking woman in her early 20s, with the woman saying she went to Harvard. Then this middle-aged guy next to me (I was not middle-aged at the time) says, "I went to the Harvard of Ohio."


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:02 PM
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Just drilling them with a steely-eyed thousand-yard stare should end the questioning. Ted Kacynski went to Harvard too.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:03 PM
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True Sports: Upon receiving the telltale "Boston" answer, start guessing individual colleges. "Oh, Boston College?" "Uh, no." "Boston University?" "No--" "Tufts? Or is that the one in Louisiana?" "No, that's the one in Boston." "So you went to Tufts?" "No." "Huh. U Mass?"

The really, really dumb version of this is to name a residential college of your university: "Oh, I went to Silliman College. It's small. It's in Connecticut."


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:04 PM
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The real solution is not to attend Harvard in the first place.

This is the funniest part. 'Oh, thank you, I'm most gratified that I might attend your worthy institution, but really, I'd never be able to live with myself, so I must decline.'


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:05 PM
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"Oh, I went to Silliman College. It's small. It's in Connecticut."

I think you're supposed to write it C=O=N=N=E=C=T=I=C=U=T, actually.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:07 PM
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The Boston-not-Harvard thing is funny to me mostly because of how badly such a move would work for the rest of the Ivies. "Uh. New Hampshire."


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:12 PM
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'Oh, thank you, I'm most gratified that I might attend your worthy institution, but really, I'd never be able to live with myself, so I must decline.'

I just found out that someone I've known for several years turned down Harvard. I was surprised at how touched I felt -- it was like a sign that she was comfortable enough with me to say that, knowing I was unlikely to read it as a sign of Something Deeper.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:15 PM
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No one is impressed by whatever school it is you're thinking of, Cala.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:15 PM
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Ted Streleski apparently did not go to Harvard, but to Stanford instead.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:16 PM
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Weirdly, I used to get a lot of people asking me if Brown was in Ohio.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:18 PM
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Is 259 supposed to represent picket fences?


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:19 PM
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261: I'll bite. Where'd she go?


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:19 PM
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Sigh.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:20 PM
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(Seriously, though, it's always interesting to me how often these conversations come up. I am sure some sociologist has researched this, but in all honesty other than job interviews -- where it is obvious on the resume anyway -- this is really, really not an issue that comes up very often in my daily life. Not with colleagues, not with friends, not with dates. Now obviously I don't hang out with a lot of people who work in the academic world, and it would be natural for it to come up a lot more often in that case, but still. I'm racking my brains to think of the last person who asked me this question, and all I can think of is a few of the young folks I work with, and that was in the context of their own confusion/terror about higher education, not at all about me.)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:20 PM
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264: I had someone who went to Brown pull the "I went to school in Providence" on me. I was like, Seriously, dude?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:21 PM
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W-lfs-n went to some Baptist college in the Midwest.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:21 PM
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I had someone who went to Brown pull the "I went to school in Providence" on me. I was like, Seriously, dude?

My brother went to Providence College.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:21 PM
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"I went to Harvard" actually can make people uncomfortable

Oddly, sometimes there are similar responses to the names of schools in California the Bay Area Berkeley and Palo Alto.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:22 PM
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Heh. If people are actually talking about Annapolis, MD, I will sometimes offer, "Oh. I went to school there." Then I get a long, slow look which invariably means, "You don't look ex-military."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:22 PM
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It would be funnier if it were picket fences.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:22 PM
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The people Witt dates ask her SAT scores and then deduce where she went to school without a follow-up questions. They're that good.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:23 PM
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It would be funnier if it were picket fences.

That's not true.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:24 PM
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Oddly, sometimes there are similar responses to the names of schools in California the Bay Area Berkeley and Palo Alto.

Pfft, as if anyone would be intimidated by a state school.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:26 PM
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I wonder if there's a blog out there with no connections to Unfogged where everyone would get all of ben's references. Totally unrelated via the Valve-Timber-Weblog crowd.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:26 PM
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278: Waste, I suppose.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:28 PM
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I don't get 270. Was Rockefeller a baptist?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:28 PM
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Evidently he was! Problem solved.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:28 PM
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271: I once asked a woman who'd told me she'd gone to school in New Haven, "Oh, did you go to Yale?" Before she said no, the look on her face told me that she'd had that conversation many times before and was not happy about it.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:29 PM
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280: Yes.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:29 PM
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-


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:29 PM
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Wrongshore said "no connections to Unfogged", Gonerill. That whole reading comprehension thing seems to be giving you problems again.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:29 PM
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279: A blog that no one on Unfogged reads is not the same as a blog with no Unfogged connections.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:29 PM
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Wrongshore said "no connections to Unfogged", Gonerill. That whole reading comprehension thing seems to be giving you problems again.

The point, Young Ben, was that no-one reads your blog.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:30 PM
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Yes, I understand that, Gonerill. But someone does write it.

We ought to strive to make jokes that at least make some sense.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:31 PM
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288: We should not.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:32 PM
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It did make sense as a set-up for 286. Thank you, Gonerill. Did I tell you there's a new Irish cop walking my beat?


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:32 PM
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Anyway, at least one of gonerill's countrymen has taste.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:32 PM
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I think this is something that college students are more concerned about than anyone else. At least the last time I remember hearing school name evasions was just after I finished college.

I've heard versions of "went to school in Connecticut" twice. Once it was an evasion of a certain Ivy name*; the other time it was because the person had gone to a private high school in Connecticut that I'd never heard of. I wouldn't be surprised if people from the Northeast had heard of it.

*I wanted to ask, do you mean Qunnipiac? But I decided not to be insufferable.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:33 PM
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I'm unable to find out where Streleski did his undergrad work.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:33 PM
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264: I had someone who went to Brown pull the "I went to school in Providence" on me. I was like, Seriously, dude?

I have actually said this BUT, in my defense, only in circumstances where Providence or its environs was the subject on the table.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:33 PM
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291: Or the capacity to tell lies, anyway.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:34 PM
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My harvard-grad coworker when I was a legal ass't claimed that having gone to harvard, or anyway saying "harvard" when asked where she had gone to school, confounded her romantic pursuits, even though she was hot.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:34 PM
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295: !

No!


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:35 PM
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I am wounded full sore, over here.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:36 PM
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My harvard-grad coworker when I was a legal ass't claimed that having gone to harvard, or anyway saying "harvard" when asked where she had gone to school, confounded her romantic pursuits, even though she was hot.

The same is true of the University of Chicago, but -- sadly -- word is it also applies while you are actually attending it.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:37 PM
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Pfft, as if anyone would be intimidated by a state school.

This is what "oddly" refers to. You wouldn't think anyone would be intimidated by a Junior College University, but it happens.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:37 PM
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I seem to be the only one here interested in talking about educated psychotics and scumbags. Hmph.

Ahmad Chalabi: BA MIT, PhD Chicago, Math.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:39 PM
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294: Yes! That makes complete sense. This person was pretentious, and aiming for mysterious voodoo educational cred.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:40 PM
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When Kacynski left Berkeley's Math Department, the faculty apparently put a presentation together to try to get him to stay. His student evaluations were not great, though. (This is all from my memory of the NYT coverage.)


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:42 PM
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W-lfs-n has never heard that U of C was built by Baptists to teach Jews Catholicism?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:44 PM
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Back on topic:

Wow, I didn't realize Wasilla is also an Ossetian god.

I was wondering if this is partly Russian influence. Wikipedia is inconclusive.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:50 PM
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Interesting!

These numbers pretty much speak for themselves, but men have a favorable impression of Palin by a 35-point margin, whereas women have a favorable impression of her by an 18-point margin. Conversely, by a 23-point margin, women do not think Palin is ready to be President, whereas Palin lost this question among men by a considerably smaller 6-point magrin.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 3:51 PM
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But Pawlenty's flaw -- what cost him the VP -- was that he would not have stirred things up. He was safe, and McCain was not inclined to take the safe route....McCain concluded she would "shake up the system" and was "a maverick,"

This is what I've been thinking. It was driving McCain INSANE to be the candidate of safe, establishment, trustworthy experience vs. the candidate of change. He wanted to shake things up, crash something into something else, do a barrel roll in his jet campaign, etc.

Jesus, how many examples do people need to finally admit that prediction markets are completely useless at predicting anything?

They are *markets*, Apo, and therefore they are automatically smarter than you. Shut up and obey the market!

I wonder how many go the other direction?

Historians with a secret desire to be physicists become economists. It's social physics, you know!

I've only read the first 80 comments, so apologies if I'm already pwned.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:02 PM
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Yes, but where in Boston?

Dorchester and JP is my answer. Boston Public represent!


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:04 PM
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Actually, Palin's husband sounds really cool. I like it that he's championing job training for non college bound kids. Blue collar!


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:06 PM
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PGD is loving McCain's remake of "Mr Smith Goes to Washington." Now in technicolor! With chick flick content for the laydeez!

Yeah, the First Dude does sound cool. He's photogenic, too.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:27 PM
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People from the tundra and steppe like Palin.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:31 PM
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311: You know, I was reading some of the Canadian papers to get a sense of their reaction to McCain's pick, and they were quoting people who had met with her on matters relating to oil and fisheries and such, and it occurred to me that, prior to yesterday morning, there might actually have been more Canadians than Americans who had ever heard of Sarah Palin. And if you count Canada (which maybe you won't: its entire population is not much bigger than that of Delaware's), it's really not true that she has no foreign policy experience (if you count matters relating to oil and fish, that is).


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:41 PM
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What's her stand on Hans Island -- the defining issue of the twenty-first century?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:45 PM
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I hate to say this, but "Hans" sound pretty Danish to me.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:46 PM
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I hate to say this, but "Hans" sound pretty Danish to me.

Which is exactly why we've renamed it "Mackenzie's Last Outpost."


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 4:57 PM
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The link in 309 is both informative and interesting, even discounting a certain amount as gloss and/or newspaper ignorance. Certainly if this quotation is accurate he sounds like he has a bit of a head on his shoulders:

For those of us who learn by touching and tearing stuff apart and for those who don't have the financial background to go to college, just being a product of that on-the-job training is really important," Palin said one morning over pastries at an Anchorage coffee shop, before meeting with trainers at several companies and trade groups in Anchorage and Wasilla.

On the other hand...

Palin was born in the western Alaska town of Dillingham to Jim Palin and Blanche Kallstrom, who is a quarter Yu'pik Eskimo.

...I would have expected better from a Los Angeles newspaper on ethnicity. What's the other 7/8, LAT? Not worth mentioning because by default we assume that everybody's white?


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:15 PM
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233

"You know, some "I went to school in boston" types might be wankers or even Wanker Adepts, but I've known some people who say it not because they think that their brilliance will make people uncomfortable, but because they're aware that saying "I went to Harvard" actually can make people uncomfortable. It's not unreasonable, nor is it guaranteed pretension, to be aware of, and react to, that."

But by doing this they are implying they think their questioner is the sort of insecure loser who is uncomfortable around people who went to Harvard which is worse.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:17 PM
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If people are actually talking about Annapolis, MD, I will sometimes offer, "Oh. I went to school there." Then I get a long, slow look which invariably means, "You don't look ex-military."

That's funny. St. John's?


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:18 PM
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Btw, and speaking of "blue collar," Canada's second Prime Minister, Alexander Mackenzie, was a stonemason from Perthshire, Scotland, who followed his childhood sweetheart to Canada and helped build the Canadian Parliament buildings. He had sort of a "rights of the working man" vibe, and it's a bit surprising he ever made it to PM, really, even though it was only in the provinces, and nobody paid much attention to the provinces back then.

Canada's first Prime Minister, John Alexander Macdonald (now best known as Sir J.A), from Glasgow, Scotland, was a notorious drunkard who once responded to a motion in the House [of Commons] by, well, throwing up all over it. He was frequently "ill," if you know what I mean, and "not present" for the vote, though he drove a hard bargain over the railways. He had a compelling 'devoted father to a child of special needs' story which has really only come out well after the fact. Media matters were a bit different back then.

Just trying to get you up to speed for your citizenship test, Emerson.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:20 PM
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318: Ayup.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:24 PM
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they think their questioner is the sort of insecure loser human being who is uncomfortable around people who may pass judgment on them for not going to went to Harvard, which is worse.

It certainly is.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:25 PM
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Is the comment-deletion some sort of 'do not feed the troll, thing?', if so, sorry for feeding the troll.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:27 PM
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237: Every once in awhile you might run into an alumnus/a of Cambridge College.

Or of that college in England.

Hey, great new mouseover text!


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:32 PM
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ttaM was a naughty working class unit.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:33 PM
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The same is true of the University of Chicago, but -- sadly -- word is it also applies while you are actually attending it.

If only it were as easy as blaming circumstance.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:34 PM
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321: which is worse.

I'm unclear on this. Which is worse? That many people are uncomfortable around people who went to Harvard, or that people who went to Harvard tend to keep it quiet because they know many people are uncomfortable about it? Or that people fear that those who went to Harvard may pass judgment on them? Or that people who went to Harvard know that some people will fear that the former will pass judgment on them, so they keep it quiet?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:42 PM
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Which is worse?

Yes, sorry, I was less than clear. What is worse is that we live in a society where it is realistic for people to worry about being ridiculed or looked down on for which college they went to, or whether they went to college at all.*

*No, I am not claiming that college reputation is meaningless.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:47 PM
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.I would have expected better from a Los Angeles newspaper on ethnicity. What's the other 7/8, LAT? Not worth mentioning because by default we assume that everybody's white?

You're expecting too much.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:48 PM
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327: Agreed.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:51 PM
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326

"... Which is worse ..."

It is worse to assume your questioner is the sort of insecure loser who is uncomfortable around people who went to Harvard than to assume they are a normal person who is not uncomfortable around people who went to Harvard.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 5:57 PM
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330: I just really don't know what to say about this, James.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:01 PM
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326: No, no, no! What this thread is about is Ted Kazynski, Jerome Corsi, William Kristol, and others of that ilk. Harvard grads. PhDs. Harvard PhDs.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:11 PM
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It is worse to assume your questioner fellow blog-commenter is the sort of person insecure loser who lacks the interpersonal intelligence to gauge how their conversational partner may be reacting to the content and direction of the conversation is uncomfortable around people who went to Harvard than to assume they are a normal person who is not uncomfortable around people who went to Harvard..


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:13 PM
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See, if you went to Harvard you're in an ilk with Kazynski. Nothing you can do about it.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:13 PM
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332: You're one to talk, Reedie.

(What do they call people who went there, anyway? I have no idea.)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:14 PM
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I am in an ilk with no known serial killers. Reedie is about right, and it's in the Urban Dictionary.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:20 PM
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My policy on dropping the H-bomb is as follows.

If someone asks me where I went to school it's usually because they want to make small talk. If it's in a vaguely academic context that probably means they want to start out by playing the "do you know X"-game, in which case I'll say Harvard. If it's in a non-academic context then saying "Harvard" will immediately (or even worse 5 seconds later after they asked me what I studied) result in 30 seconds of them saying how smart I must be. This is obviously terrible for small-talk. If I say "Boston" then there's some hope of something like "oh, I grew up in Boston" and then you can talk about the Sox or something.

The other time it might come up is if I'm talking to people I've recently met and something actually relevant to Boston comes up. Perhaps we're comparing public transit systems in different countries, maybe we're talking about baseball stadiums, or blue laws. In that case Harvard vs. BU is irrelevant to the discussion and I say "when I was in college in boston, yada yada yada." If you say "while I was at Harvard yada yada yada" the person you're talking to really does decide you're an asshole.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:20 PM
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My mom is still bitter that I refused to even look at Harvard. Rory, however, has firm plans to go when she grows up.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:27 PM
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-


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:28 PM
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I am in an ilk with no known serial killers.

Maybe no serial killers, but we shouldn't forget the spy, murderer, and amateur sinologist Dr. Yu Tsun.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:28 PM
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I am in an ilk with no known serial killers.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:29 PM
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338: This may be a dumb question, but did Rory end with that pseud because she wants to go there or is it just a coincidence?


Posted by: Tiny Hermaphrodite | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:35 PM
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I refused to even look at Harvard.

Why's that, Di? Do you mind if I ask?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:38 PM
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342: Coincidence. Or maybe subconscious influence?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:38 PM
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To go back to our "complaints about the media" thread of yesterday:

Exhibit A:

Camarero called Zapatero "an armchair feminist who does not listen to women," and argued that the law is for the élite, because "it doesn't confront the real problems," which she did not specify, "and is not ambitious enough."

Exhbiit B:

Ms. France-Kremin, 36, who lives nearby in Dublin, an affluent suburb of Columbus, likewise has qualms about the seasoning of Mr. Obama, a first-term United States senator after eight years as a state senator. But she also strongly favors abortion rights, and Ms. Palin -- more prominently than Mr. McCain -- does not.

Emphasis mine, in both cases. And no, the latter is not mitigated by use of the word "staunch" later in the article. You still don't know the actual extreme of her position after you read the NYT piece.

Confounding factor: Parenthetical from above-linked NYT article that provides a nuggest of actual information:

(At the Republican convention, male delegates will outnumber women by more than two to one. The majority of delegates at the Democratic convention that ended Thursday were women.)

Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:40 PM
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343: Damned if I even remember anymore. It seems entirely plausible that I refused to consider it because my mom REALLY wanted me to. Troubled times... I'm told that my expressed opinion at the time was to the effect that the Ivies were too stuck up. I probably also secretly feared I wouldn't measure up...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:41 PM
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The Rory of Gilmore Girls ended up at Yale. I do not know this.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:41 PM
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likewise has qualms about the seasoning of Mr. Obama

Easily solved with the application of a little vegetable oil and a hot oven.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:42 PM
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Or maybe the concern is that his water content is too high?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:43 PM
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347: But only after a lifetime of persistently dreaming of Harvard. She also lived up to her grandmother's hopes and dreams in all the ways Lorelei never could.

Not that I identify with a silly little TV show in utterly unhealthy ways, of course...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:44 PM
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346: I did something similar. I applied under protest, and they twisted my arm (my teachers, my parents, and my boss at the municipal library). It was weird. What I don't forget is my reaction to that acceptance letter: not the slightest hesitation. It was a learning moment, hey!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:48 PM
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When I hear that someone went to Harvard, what I think is not that this person is part of a scary meritocracy who looks down on me as a plebeian, but that this person came from a family rich enough to afford to pay for Harvard, and then was smart enough to not fail out. Although maybe the person is just in an incredible amount of debt, that itself indicates that they were deemed to be a good enough financial risk to give student loans to.

That message is sent by the mention of several hundred other extremely expensive colleges as well. But the more selective the college is, the more likely it seems that the typical student didn't get financial aid, since people would be willing to go into more debt to go to a more selective place.


Posted by: Ardent reader | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:53 PM
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351: I'm glad where I landed, regardless. I'm a small pond kind of fish.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:53 PM
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his person came from a family rich enough to afford to pay for Harvard, and then was smart enough to not fail out.

This is what scares me most about Rory's Harvard talk. Though she is very educated on the cost. Today she was admiring a Lexus convertible in front of us, and when I told her it probably cost $50K, she replied, "That's like the cost of a full year of the best education in America!"

Anyway, time to go pick her up from Lane's house!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:57 PM
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340: We used to have Leopold and Loeb's yearbook pictures on the door of the Classics lounge. They were Classics club members in good standing.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:57 PM
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The nice thing about Berkeley is that you have the option: say "I went to Cal" and people associate you with the football team. And "Berkeley" for the snobiteriat.


Posted by: zz | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 6:57 PM
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Maybe there should be a Truth and Reconciliation Criticism / Self-Criticism steps program for Harvard grads, so that they can redeem themselves.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:05 PM
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For the fact is, no one is intrinsically and inescapably evil; anyone can reform themself, if they have the will.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:06 PM
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332

"No, no, no! What this thread is about is Ted Kazynski, Jerome Corsi, William Kristol, and others of that ilk. Harvard grads. PhDs. Harvard PhDs."

Well if you conceal the fact you went to Harvard because you are embarassed about it and don't want other people to think less of you that's a bit different. But this seems a little unlikely as people aren't forced to go to Harvard.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:07 PM
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352: I realize that's what people think. That place decided for whatever reasons to take a chance in my own case, and waived something like 50% of tuition. Add on student loans and work study. I surely didn't look like an astonishing package going in, at least in my own eyes, so I have no idea why they did what they did.

I'm not sure whether the extreme expense of some colleges these days is commensurate with the expense in the early 80s. Tuition then was, if I remember, $16,000 to begin with, going up $1,000 each year to end around $20,000 in 1986. How my parents managed their portion I am not sure.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:09 PM
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353: I'm glad where I landed, regardless. I'm a small pond kind of fish.

Yeah, that's what I meant about a learning experience. Big fish/small pond is a ready preference. The big pond is scary.

I apologize to all; beginning to indulge in nostalgia and a bit of the maudlin. Done now.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:13 PM
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352 is dumb. Although it is true that lower-tier schools are more likely to have merit based scholarships, all of the top schools have extensive need-based financial aid. At Harvard any family making less than 60K/year has to pay nothing at all. When I was there the threshold was a bit lower, but my parents paid $1K total over 4 years ($500/year for the first two years, nothing after that) and I graduated with under 7K in student loans (again now it would be less than that).

Now it is nonetheless true that most Harvard students come from rich families, but this is a combination of a lot of factors one of which is that too many people think like AR and don't know to tell poorer kids that they will get free rides at any large endowment college they can get admitted to.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:15 PM
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356 is both right and awesome.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:16 PM
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354

"This is what scares me most about Rory's Harvard talk. ..."

I believe Harvard itself has significantly improved its financial aid for middle class students. You need to worry she doesn't make it to Harvard and ends up wanting to go somewhere slightly less prestigious which is just as expensive and which doesn't have Harvard's endowment and can't offer as much aid.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:18 PM
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359: James, Ididn' go to Harvard. I didn't want to be associated with mass murderers and winger hacks. But not everyone was so principled.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:22 PM
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I was disappointed to learn that Sqeaky Fromme was not a Reed dropout, as I'd previously been told.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:29 PM
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We can keep telling people that.

Mike Davis was a Reed dropout, whom I met. Ry Cooder. Larry Karush the avant-garde musician.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:30 PM
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Half the "Reed dropout" Googles are Steve Jobs.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:33 PM
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Glory-stealing fucker. Didn't he go for just a semester?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:37 PM
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Not long.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:39 PM
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2 kids in my dorm my first year at Reed got put on academic suspension for having too many Cs and Ds. They both transferred to Harvard.

They were from lots of Boston money. Still a good story, supporting Emerson's very right position.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:43 PM
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Huh. Jobs' Reed calligraphy teacher baptized my daughters.

371: You were a Reedie/Reedite too? When?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:45 PM
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372: I graduated in 01. You know, the last year of Old Reed.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:50 PM
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You graduated? How strange.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:52 PM
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it was considered stylish at the time


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:55 PM
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OT: Eek, y'all, this Gustav situation looks really really bad.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 7:58 PM
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Wow, holy shit people. Palin may be lying about the maternity of her son Trig.

This is gonna go well.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:03 PM
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Fun stuff about Palin's religion.

This piece really gets into the weeds of Dominionist theology and splittism. It's the Republican version of Trotskyism.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:03 PM
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U of Chi-town? That's where like the finance and econ. swine who can't get into IvyLeague or Steinford hang.

I think Chicago undergrad is special, perhaps because of the core curriculum. And the reputational difference attracts different types. In my experience Chicago undergrads are very different than Ivy students. They seem to care more deeply about ideas, be more genuinely intellectual. Perhaps this has changed over the years.

This is what scares me most about Rory's Harvard talk.

It should scare you that she's hung up on college brands. That can be a recipe for being confused and directionless later on.

rich enough to afford to pay for Harvard, and then was smart enough to not fail out.

It's very difficult to fail out of Harvard, you really have to try.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:11 PM
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Don't feed the troll, PGD.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:14 PM
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Was he a troll? Sorry. I thought Emerson or McManus had been temporarily driven mad by the reputation of the Chicago econ department.

Everyone go to Cecily's blog if you want to see a sadomasochistic makeout session with a lovebird.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:17 PM
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this Gustav situation looks really really bad.

Yeah. I was very modestly cheered to see that the evacuation process seems slightly better than three years ago. But having been in New Orleans recently, it seems horrendously sad to think of the city getting punched again. When I was there in July, I was shocked at how devastated it still was.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:18 PM
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I had a friend who raised lovebirds. You have to watch them closely because they kill each other. (Relationships, you see).


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:20 PM
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It's very difficult to fail out of Harvard, you really have to try.

Yeah, this was an eye-opener for me as a johnny-come-lately grad student at an Ivy school. Given the desire to have the class graduate as a unit (for fund-raising purposes later, and for U.S. News fake stats in the present), it was amazingly difficult to fail out, not least because of a support system that employed people like me as writing tutors, etc.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:23 PM
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I think people mostly drop out rather than flunk out. Still, I think things have changed since my days, as there were not such things as writing tutors. Or maybe you could find one, but it sure as hell wouldn't help you with your philosophy papers.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:29 PM
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377:Go for it HP, Destroy the 16-yr-old daughter, that'll be good feminist politics.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:30 PM
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Re Gustav. The center is on a line to pass about twenty miles north of Dallas, and after 2-3 months of constant near 100 heat indexes, I would really welcome a good rain and cool spell.

Does this make me evil?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:35 PM
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386: I'm not the one ashamed of the daughter's teenage pregnancy, bob.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:36 PM
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386: 377:Go for it HP, Destroy the 16-yr-old daughter, that'll be good feminist politics.

Considering that Palin apparently opposes contraception and favors only abstinence education, I think it's fair to hold her family up as an example of the success of the policies she would legislate.


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:36 PM
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373: It was 1992. I was there. I saw it die. Fucking tragic.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:36 PM
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389: Oh, god, I know the cruelest, cruelest way to play this.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:46 PM
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388,389:Lovely. Palin wil survive, even if you succeed in driving her off the ticket.

The minor who has her discreet pregnancy, and it isn't yet certain that it's true, discussed on the evening talk shows may not be as strong.

Hey, I would say it is none of my business; that minor children are out of bounds; and that the decision should be left to the women...but I am a sexist pig without class.

You are the moral ones.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:48 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:48 PM
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377 seems like BS to me.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:50 PM
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You are the moral ones.

Watch that plural!

Anyway, I agree with 394.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:55 PM
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On the question of 377 - Downs Syndrome is correlated with the age of the mother; the older the mother the higher the probability of having a Downs baby. That doesn't mean a 16 year old can't have a child with DS, but it does mean that the chances of a 46 y.o. woman having a child with DS is much higher than the chances of a 16 yo having a DS baby. At this point I'll put my money on Palin Sr. being the mom. If I'm wrong, this will turn out to be the most awesomely awesome presidential election fuckup in living memory, if not *ever*.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 8:58 PM
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394: Me too—a fit woman can easily go 7 months barely showing. Still, it would be kind of awesome.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:00 PM
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397: the whole flying-at-8-months-and-flying-back-8-hours-plus-a-couple-hour-drive-in-labor thing is, to my superficialness, a little startling. Do people usually do that?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:07 PM
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I believe 377 is quite possible. Daughter is missing from school for eight months? Palin isn't even remotely showing, distressed, or obviously in labor while on a plane for eight hours, and goes to a remote hospital? I've seen shit like that happen a lot in super-conservative families. Teens in our church are regularly finding out that "Mom" is actually "Grandma."

That said, I'll wait to hear it confirmed by the National Enquirer. According to Beyerstein, the NE is famous for having pretty rock-solid evidence before they publish a story. (Their bad reputation is because they follow the nastiest stories.) It's going to be a disaster, a real ugly groaner, but something Obama and Biden can stay above.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:07 PM
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It does look like Palin is wearing baggy clothes in most of those pictures. Certainly I wouldn't peg outdoorsy-kinda-jacket as the obvious fashion choice for an executive.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:08 PM
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396: Amongst many other reasons to be skeptical: It's one thing to have no-one notice you're pregnant (because you're not) till seven months. It's another thing to announce you're pregnant at that point and fake the remainder of the pregnancy to the satisfaction of everyone who is now looking at you.

It would be the biggest background check failure evah, of course. But right now, given the lack of any real evidence at all, its presence on DKos etc just seems kinda vile.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:09 PM
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McCain is really going to wish he had learned how to use the internet.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:10 PM
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401: well, we know they didn't background check worth a damn.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:11 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:11 PM
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Also, fuck vile. Fuck some rats, as well.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:11 PM
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397: the whole flying-at-8-months-and-flying-back-8-hours-plus-a-couple-hour-drive-in-labor thing is, to my superficialness, a little startling. Do people usually do that?

Yes. All this stuff about needing a doctor's note to fly is just BS that hasn't been true for years.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:12 PM
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Seriously I give better than 50% Palin's pulled an Eagleton by next week.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:12 PM
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406: I... really? There's no down side?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:13 PM
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I might get my Mittens after all!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:15 PM
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408: In the Good Ole Days you had to get your certificate of confinement (still awesomely called that in Australia) and then be removed from society. But these days airline policies are kinda all over the map: some have no policy, some say no flying within a week of your due date, and some say within some vague time in the last 4 weeks. As long as you're not within a week of your due date, are flying somewhere with medical care at the other end, and you have a letter from your doctor saying you're in good health and there are no complications, you're set.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:17 PM
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410: okay, but flying in labor, not telling anybody, and then driving well over an hour (believing the dkos here, which could bite me) at the other end, to deliver a premature baby; that's not weird?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:20 PM
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"My daughter made a mistake, and I was just trying to protect her as a mother always does. I considered it a deeply private matter, and had no idea there were people out there who would try to hurt a very vulnerable 16-yr-old in such a cruel partisan manner.

I have always known there were people out there who would hate me for my religion and values, but I never thought I was putting my family in danger. I thought there were some rules and standards, even among Democrats. I don't regret trying to serve my country, but I now realize that the current atmosphere of hate & destruction makes it impossible for me to serve. I take full responsibility, I was not completely honest, but I don't regret trying to love my daughter, but only that national politics has descended to a place where decent people can no longer play a role."


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:24 PM
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That's beautiful, Bob. *sniff*


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:26 PM
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401: Its presence on DKos etc just seems kinda vile.

I agree that this looks pretty speculative at this point and seems unlikely and not a great thing for anyone partisan to be pushing. However, given the structure of the Great Orange Satan, your comment borders on the kind of "MoveOn made an ad comparing Bush to Hitler" BS, this is not prominent nor being pushed at Dkos. Here is a more grounded list of Palin problems from there.

I will admit that I did consider that her little "troopergate" thingie gives McCain a kind of ready made no fault (other than pandering and bad vetting) escape clause if she doesn't pan out for any other reason (my odds are longer, but I am a bit with Sifu on his prediction). And Hey! at least she made everyone shut up about the speech by that articulate guy the other night.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:28 PM
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406: I... really? There's no down side?

There's a downside. Doctors just don't care anymore, not like back in my day when the GP knew all his or her patients' names and family history off by heart.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:29 PM
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410: okay, but flying in labor, not telling anybody, and then driving well over an hour (believing the dkos here, which could bite me) at the other end, to deliver a premature baby; that's not weird?

OK, flying while actually in labor is not exactly standard practice. That would be weird, especially seeing as if it were Baby #5 you'd expect the labor to be over pretty quick.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:38 PM
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413: That's beautiful, Bob. *sniff*

Made even more so by the fact that, in the very unlikely event such a speech will need to be made, it will be made by a women who while in the midst of "protecting" her daughter was actively pursuing a position where she knew that she and her family would be put under intense scrutiny.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:39 PM
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But absent any evidence this is all just McCain and his black children type stuff.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:42 PM
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I will admit that I did consider that her little "troopergate" thingie gives McCain a kind of ready made no fault (other than pandering and bad vetting) escape clause if she doesn't pan out for any other reason

Yeah, but that happened in the past. McCain would look pretty foolish ditching her over that; it would be tantamount to saying that he picked her at random.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:43 PM
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419: Actually it is happening right now. Ongoing coverup has been unraveling *this* month. New developments might come any day.

||
Have people heard about the bullshit "preemptive" raids going on in the Twin Cities. I'm hoping Minnepolitan is OK.
|>


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:50 PM
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Overheard: older woman reading the New York Post, on a commuter rail line leaving NYC a few hours ago: "Look, she named her son Bristol! How wonderful! I liked her already, now I like her even more!"


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 9:55 PM
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I was never one of the "Dumb Karl" people. Rove knew the Palin nomination would make the Democrat's ( & MSM & elitist country-club Repubs) heads explode and bring out their very worst tendencies, besides firing up the wingnut base.

Yglesias has what, 15-20 posts on Palin in 36 hours. Fucking why? Jesus, leave her alone. This is killing us already. Even if she drops out and is replaced by bland, it will be remembered by the base. The point is to decrease the opposition turnout, not fire them up.

And Hutchinson would have been better? Why, because of the letters after her name, her millions, her decades of power lunches, her connections with lobbyists and foreign dictators? I guess America isn't a place where anyone can aspire to high office; there remains a corrupt class system at least as bad as the ancien regime.

A Senate of millionaires, but Palin, or someone like her, isn't "qualified". She doesn't sit on panels with O'Hanlonlike Yglesias, Not one of us.

Well, the people no longer rule. The millionaires and their paid stooges have created a closed club.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:00 PM
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In 421 "son" s/b "daughter".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:18 PM
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There's no down side?

Not as long as the baby's staying put, not really. Most of my friends didn't fly anywhere in the last month, but those that did usually had a doctor's appointment the day before to make sure they weren't too dilated.

Teens in our church are regularly finding out that "Mom" is actually "Grandma."

One of my friends found out, at age 25, that she wasn't actually her mother's first child.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:38 PM
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Don't want to be an ageist, but at 44, aren't most all pregnancies considered high risk by most all doctors?


Posted by: TJ | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:50 PM
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So is there any actual sourcing for the claim that Bristol was out of school for 5 months? Without that detail the rest is all extremely circumstantial.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 10:58 PM
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I am with Gonerill on this. Except I can't help thinking of Grover Cleveland-like slogans people might use if it turns out to be true. I think this makes me a bad person.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:04 PM
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The nice thing about Berkeley is that you have the option: say "I went to Cal" and people associate you with the football team. And "Berkeley" for the snobiteriat.

Among the amusing things about this are that a fair number of people think "Cal" is a southern California school and others think that Berkeley isn't even in Division 1. I think fewer people thought of the football team back when Cal was consistently terrible. But you could always mention basketball and Jason Kidd (this also helped prove that Berkeley was in Division 1).


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:07 PM
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I'm with Gonerill too, for the slightly more cynical reason that Bristol just would have had an abortion. It's not like she'd be the first kid with Republican parents to have one.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:07 PM
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377 strikes me as complete bullshit & sleazy bullshit at that. (I especially like the quasi-scientific analysis of how Bristol totally looks 7+ months pregnant in that photo. Um, no, she really doesn't, and unlike her mother she is not wearing multiple layers of not-especially-tight dark clothing &/or standing behind a desk.)

The labor story strikes me as a little odd, but I'm neither an Ob-Gyn nor a midwife nor a rugged frontierswoman, & I'm not sure how faking early labor in front of Rick Perry helps with this elaborate ruse.


Posted by: Katherine | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:27 PM
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There are all sorts of legitimate ways to attack Palin; why resort to one that attacks her family's private life? It's slimy and voyeuristic, and the gleeful tone of the DKos post creeps me out.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-30-08 11:58 PM
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Also, there's more than one way to fuck a rat; planting a false rumor like this one with some semi-plausible evidence which could later be exposed as utterly bogus (and thoroughly mean and sleazy) would be a great Rovian move.


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:27 AM
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I am told by the expert in the house that Desperate Housewives had a subplot for the entire last season of a mother covering for her daughter's pregnancy, including three different sizes of fake bellies.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 3:17 AM
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Waters breaking doesn't automatically mean contractions and so on. Labour might not start for a day or two (NICE guidelines say it's ok to wait up to 96 hours) - but you can't tell that things WON'T get going. So she wouldn't necessarily have been in active labour on the plane, though it does seem like an odd choice.

That picture of Bristol is bollocks though - I see teenage girls every day with bellies like that, and even in Reading they're not all pregnant.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 4:22 AM
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Okay, I admit it. I'm the mother.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:30 AM
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435: So that means apo's the father. Wow, these North Carolina hounddogs!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:35 AM
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A quick peruse of the 'net shows that this one is going "full tabloid", so there will be plenty of outlets for "information" for those who want that fix.

Never mind the rumor, in light of several recent Unfogged discussions, I enjoyed these two quotes from the Anchorage Daily News article which reported on the surprise announcement that she was pregnant.

"I've always been a believer that God's not going to give us anything that we cannot handle," [Sarah] Palin said.
"I'm really excited," he [Todd Palin] said. "Every child you get from God. The more the merrier."

Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:42 AM
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Anecdotal good news on one front on the impact of the two VP selections. My wife talked to elderly family members (traditionally Democrats) in Palm Beach County who had been wavering and firmly in McCain's camp respectively. I knew that some fundamentalist unknown from Alaska would not sit well with them, so I had prepped my wife with the "Palin was a Buchanan supporter" talking point. Turns out there was no need, the Biden pick and McCain being an all-around dick had already moved them both firmly to Obama. And the Palin pick did appall them.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:58 AM
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The Great Baby Cover-up stuff is gross and pushing it makes one sound like the "seekrit Mussulman birth certificate" nutters.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:04 AM
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pushing it makes one sound like the "seekrit Mussulman birth certificate" nutters

Oh well!

Seriously I think the whole story (you got on a plane in labor?) is kind of odd, but it's probably not a smear I'll keep it-would-be-irresponsible-not-to'ing about. Troopergate is bad (and funny) enough, and true! Sweet.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:12 AM
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I think getting on a plane in labor is plenty weird, but I also think that this woman is insane. Maybe she had to get home to be on her special Jesus birthing stool or something.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:16 AM
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And look! A better, longer, more detailed article on Troopergate from McClatchy!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:20 AM
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441: And the whole Alaska machismo bit is real and ongoing. A doctor friend spent some time serving a lot of non-road-accessible bush communities in Alaska—hair-curling stories galore. Finally burned out though on the grisly monotony of it; majority of work was two kinds of cases: effects of chronic alcoholism and effects of acute alcohol use (booze, snowmobiles and chainsaws, an unholy triumvirate).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:26 AM
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Am I alone in thinking this story a) sounds totally plausible, and b) regardless of truth, is a horrible thing to discuss about a teenage girl who did nothing to put herself under this scrutiny?

Yeah, if it's true it makes Palin a particularly distasteful hypocrite in certain ways (and a particularly protective parent in others, cf. Bob's impressive channelling of how this would be spun). But as tempting as it is to say "This is the natural result of the policies you espouse!" it feels really unpleasant to drag the teenager into it.

Politicians' spouses can be considered to have signed on for the duration. Politicians kids' -- and Chelsea Clinton was the first one I really noticed with this -- did not. Let them alone.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:26 AM
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One of my friends found out, at age 25, that she wasn't actually her mother's first child

A friend of mine has two half-brother/cousins. Two children by one brother, two by the other. One brother was away at the war. (Not a hillbilly family ethnically, but way out n the boonies. Not from metropolitan Wobegon.)

Not really a happy story. The mom is like a character from a Richard Thompson song -- an old, resentful woman with a lurid past. There was a child by a third man, and screwing around with one of her son's friends, etc.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:27 AM
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445: Among my friends, there was a wave of "lost siblings" that showed up as we went off to college. Dads who had knocked up their high school girlfriends, moms who had given babies up for adoption . . .


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:30 AM
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Despite my principles, I think that speculation about the daughter, etc., should be off limits. While I believe in the politics of personal destruction, this does seem too Rovian.

Even the troopergate story might backfire. What Palin did was illegal and small-town, but if the guy really did drive his cruiser sucking on a beer, he probably should have been fired. That was the least of the accusations, and the fully verified one, and Palin, as sil, was in a poition to know the guy pretty well.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:36 AM
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442: And look! A better, longer, more detailed article on Troopergate from McClatchy!

Yes. I will add the detail that apparently the illegal moose hunt that the estranged husband was accused of was one from happier times and included Palin's father.

And is this classic McCain campaign whining/paranoia for story running full tilt when they picked her and is continuing to do with as far as I know (and hope) no impetus from the Obama campaign.

"The Governor did nothing wrong and has nothing to hide," the McCain/Palin campaign said in a statement, blaming the issue on the campaign of the Democratic nominee, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama. "It's outrageous that the Obama campaign is trying to attack her over a family issue.

Actually the *only* thing I think the Obama campaign should do on this for now, is to aggressively rebut the claim that they are pushing this with some snide dig at the transcendental exercise in whinerdom that has become the McCain campaign.

"Sarah Palin abused the powers of her office. But, but John McCain was a POW."



Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:43 AM
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Around here, as long as I remember, people might gossip a bit about brides who give birth too close to the wedding, but no one really cares as long as there's a marriage. Mostly because probably 25% of the marriages here are of that description.

That's sort of the hidden rational factor in the whole birth control / sex argument. Conservative rules are pretty well fitted for societies where it's normal to marry at 16 or so. (Especially if you bend the conservative rules to allow contraception). But in our society early marriage usually drags you down and consigns you to poverty, and very large poor families have trouble taking good care of the children.

The country-club Republican alliance with the religious right is especially contemptible, because they know all that stuff and are more or less the same as elite liberals on those questions as far as their own lives go.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:45 AM
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448: And is this classic McCain campaign whining/paranoia for story running full tilt when they picked her and is continuing to do with as far as I know (and hope) no impetus from the Obama campaign.

WTF? And this is classic McCain campaign whining/paranoia for a story already running full tilt when they picked her and is continuing to do so with, as far as I know (and hope), no impetus from the Obama campaign.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:47 AM
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if the guy really did drive his cruiser sucking on a beer

As far as I can see from the McClatchy article, that accusation was from a friend of the Palin's and was never substantiated.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:49 AM
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There were three witnesses to the beer story. "Never substantiated" means what? Bureaucratspeak.

I assume that half the cops in Alaska drive around sucking beers, just like half of everyone else there, and that this indeed is a vendetta singling out a particular individual for other reasons. But I bet Palin has a case.

On the other hand, considering that Palin is being slagged on even by some Alaska Republicans, it doesn't sound lie she's a conciliators who works with people and builds bridges. (Except to nowhere. Ha! Ha!)


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:57 AM
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Her approval ratings, which were 90% shortly after she took office, have already dropped to 67%. That's some Bush-level squandering of opportunity.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:59 AM
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268: This is a regional thing. In New England (but not upstate New York) people ask all the time. I'm told that in DC, the important thing is to work for an important person.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:01 AM
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I should add that people who move here from other parts of the country are often surprised by this.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:02 AM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:07 AM
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||

Bush has been trying in various ways to lock in a lot of extra-constitutional executive powers. (Or: lock in an authoritarian interpretation of the constitution).

How to fight this? Easy. Obama starts using these powers against Republicans. Republicans ally with civil libertarian Democrats to stop him. Then Obama says "Ha ha, fooled you."

Pure fantasy. It assumes that Obama wants these powers reduced, for one thing, and that this issue could be finessed without hurting Obama.

Or maybe he could just explain to Republican leaders what he was capable of doing.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:11 AM
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452: Jesus Emerson, you pathetic softie, it's not the crime, it's the cover up, you know that. 88% of Alaskans thought she was lying about her role when the recorded phone call broke in mid-August. Obama campaign should stay away (it already has legs), but *we* all should push this one.

444: and a particularly protective parent in others, cf. Bob's impressive channelling of how this would be spun)

Witt, I agree with most of your points, however, in the very unlikely scenario that it is true, bob's creative spin is indeed what will be spun. However, it will soon be overtaken by the fact that if indeed you are parents already involved in such a high-risk scheme to "protect" your daughter and one of you continues to seek the position of vice-presidential candidate then YOU ARE MONSTERS.

Choose whatever reason you like, I am now joining Sifu in giving even odds of her pulling (being forced into) an Eagleton.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:18 AM
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Yeah, but most Alaskans agree that driving drunk is a constitutional right, as do Wyomingans and Montanans. At the national level Palin might be able to pull it off.

Firedoglake has a lot on police harassment and arrests in the Twin Cities. Based on what I've read, we can't assume that Minneapolitan and Frowner are safe. A theatre they're affiliated with (Bedlam Theatre) is involved though it hasn't been closed down or raided. I just sent them an email.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:26 AM
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See, Alaskans are Canadians without the mildness. They're not like us.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:27 AM
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I was going to comment in response to MC yesterday that shiv would not consider Palin to have foreign policy experience, not because Canada isn't really a separate country, but because Alaska isn't really part of the states.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:31 AM
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OK, so now McCain has said that Palin is: ""a partner and a soul mate."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:39 AM
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That's a little faster than it took with Cindy.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:40 AM
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"We are all Alaskans now."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:42 AM
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459: Maybe we could have a front-page post on thse things? Please?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:44 AM
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Firedoglake has a lot on police harassment and arrests in the Twin Cities. Based on what I've read, we can't assume that Minneapolitan and Frowner are safe. A theatre they're affiliated with (Bedlam Theatre) is involved though it hasn't been closed down or raided. I just sent them an email.

Let us know what you hear from them.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:48 AM
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Around here, as long as I remember, people might gossip a bit about brides who give birth too close to the wedding, but no one really cares as long as there's a marriage. Mostly because probably 25% of the marriages here are of that description Jesus' mother did it so it's cool.


Posted by: disaggregated | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:19 AM
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No, that's not the reason.


Posted by: Fatman | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:20 AM
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Geraldine Ferraro reminds us why we hate her.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:40 AM
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Choose whatever reason you like, I am now joining Sifu in giving even odds of her pulling (being forced into) an Eagleton.

Has a presidential campaign ever come back from a running mate do-over? Have there been pre-Eagleton Eagletons?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:47 AM
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McCain evaluates his VP pick.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:47 AM
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471: May I just say that this sort of thing makes me extremely irritable. Some friends over elsewhere decided last night to riff on how brilliantly witty the acronym VPILF was, declaring an intention to blog it, for sure, and to look for some nudie pics of Palin in the meantime. Sure, guys, and you are my friends again why?

As the Palin story develops, it becomes sheerly painful; a national embarrassment, if you will. That this should have at least as much to do with the fact that Palin is attractive as with her qualifications for office is doubly embarrassing.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:05 AM
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You might talk to McCain about this.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:16 AM
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Parsimon, I think most of those who are still talking about this here are saying how unlikely it seems and that we shouldn't bother with it (for a number of good reasons). Yeah, that has the effect of continuing to talk about it, but I don't think the intent was to smear. Me, I'm gonna return to silence.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:22 AM
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Samantha Bee explains why she is voting for McCain.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:23 AM
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MoDo is horrible. Today she is mostly aiming at Palin, but she is still bad.

It's easy to see where this movie is going. It begins, of course, with a cute, cool unknown from Alaska who has never even been on "Meet the Press" triumphing over a cute, cool unknowable from Hawaii who has been on "Meet the Press" a lot.

Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:28 AM
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474: Oh, md, I don't include anyone here in this. Not at all. I'm appalled, rather, at the extent to which people I otherwise consider friends are descending to gawking.

473: John, in an ideal world, McCain should be able to pick an attractive female VP running mate without her looks becoming a significant part of the story. The fact that this is so, in this world, brings any number of things into relief: that the measure of an attractive woman is very narrow, that such women rarely find their way into public office, such that it's considered worth remarking, and so on.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:39 AM
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It's like the good old days in the SDS -- you can feel good about supporting the black guy, and the women are there to look good, and bring you coffee as you discuss strategies to change the country for the better.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:47 AM
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Besides being attractive, there's something about Palin's style of being attractive that invites ridicule. She reminds me of Michele Bachman that way. I think of it as being the prosperity theology version of the Stepford Wives, with the fixed smile, peppy optimism, and retrograde ideas and stupidities.

She'll be effective in some parts of the country. I really doubt she'll bring in new voters, though. She mostly secures the base. Maybe in this election we can push McCain down to the base alone, which is about 30-35% of the electorate (the crazification demographic).

I do try, but ridicule and contempt have their own law, and from time to time I'm going to slip.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:50 AM
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478: Something like that, though it hadn't occurred to me in terms of the SDS. I'd like to smack a few people in any case.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:54 AM
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MoDo is horrible. Today she is mostly aiming at Palin, but she is still bad.

Ha! Someone asked me recently (frostily, even) just what was wrong with Dowd, after all, in a general way, seeing as how she's been one of the strongest public voices against GWB over time, and he's never heard anything negative about her before.

I couldn't frame an answer that went beyond a general observation that she assembles snarky talking points, says nothing new; I just passed on the question otherwise. If anyone has an answer that might pass muster, you could write it for me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:11 AM
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Someone asked me recently (frostily, even) just what was wrong with Dowd, after all, in a general way, seeing as how she's been one of the strongest public voices against GWB over time, and he's never heard anything negative about her before.

She's a misogynist who, even more than Frank Rich, represents the decline of political commentary to what you might see in a half-decent Variety gossip column. And her Pulitzer and place of prominence -- she's by far the most famous woman political columnist in the country, right? -- means that her success influences others to treat serious political discussion the same way we do yawp about who made the ugliest dress on Project Runway.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:23 AM
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I have the feeling that the Times editors said to themselves at some point "They want us to hire a woman? We'll hire them a woman, all right!" and went out and got the most stereotypical, catty, "intuitive", fluffy woman they could find.

In 1982 they got rid of Molly Ivins, who was better than anyone male or female they've ever had since then. Dowd was hired in 1989.

Their getting rid of Ivins wasn't causal, but it was a pretty good indicator of what was happening to the Times and the country.

Officially she wasn't fired, which probably means that they gave her a hefty severance for pretending that she'd left by mutual agreement.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:29 AM
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482: Good, thanks! Permission to reprint it in a small private email discussion list? (I can defend it on my own, obvs.)

The addendum to the frosty challenge was: oh, and please don't tell me that she's not progressive enough, so we shouldn't listen to her.

I'm torn between thinking that this is really a sidebar to anything one might take seriously, and thinking that people who are otherwise liberal aren't paying attention, and need a smack. It bugs me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:34 AM
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Ivins has said that she didn't fit the Times' formal style, and that it was probably a good parting for both, IIRC.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:35 AM
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John, thanks for posting the links to the RNC raids. I was very involved in that stuff during the Clinton years, but it has fallen off my radar since then.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:38 AM
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I went to work in local government shortly after the LA DNC. One of my early meetings was with a policeman who was complaining about the "vegetarian terrorists" he had to evict from a squat.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:41 AM
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I don't think MoDo is a misogynist so much as she inspires misogyny in others. She's wildly selfish and appears driven by some weird kind of personal envy / schadenfreude about politicians rather than using her public role to be thoughtful about what's good for the country.

With that said, she never really fell for the Bush cult, and deserves credit for that.

The Palins appear like the kind of nice couple you'd enjoy having as neighbors, where you could agree to disagree about politics, but really don't want ruling you. I actually sympathize strongly with McManus's arguments about experience (as I said in another thread, in our current system experience / credentials can be an active negative). But the problem with inexperienced people is that they are often *more* likely, not less, to listen to bad establishment advisors, since they feel uncertain about their own credentials and judgement. (I worry about this with Obama and foreign policy, an area he seems uncertain in and where he has been unwilling to question certain orthodoxies).

The key is the ability to see through the bullshit. I like the Palin's solidity and ordinariness, but nothing makes me think that will allow her to see through the bullshit. And the fact that her first experience is being indoctrinated in McCain's nutty foreign policy beliefs makes it likely that she'll turn out to be an active bullshit enabler.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:50 AM
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Also, I'm coming around to the view that the Palin pick makes McCain look like something of a loose cannon. And the more confused and at sea Palin looks during interviews/debates, the bigger that effect will be.

Obama never has that problem.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:53 AM
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I don't think MoDo is a misogynist so much as she inspires misogyny in others.

If misogyny is defined as hatred for the feminine, writ large (ability to give birth, messiness of menstruation, social permission to have feelings and emotions and such) and small (girly shoes! girly voice! makeup!), Dowd epitomizes it as perfectly as any mainstream political writer I can think of.

And she doesn't inspire it in others, she's like the girl making slut jokes who gives boys permission to do it too.

(N.b. Opinion based on a large sample of her NYT writings from ca. 2000-04.)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:09 PM
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Ivins has said that she didn't fit the Times' formal style, and that it was probably a good parting for both, IIRC

This may be true, but it amusingly raises the question of how well Dowd fits the Times' formal style, or how well the Times fits hers. What if the entire paper were written in MoDo's style? Could you read it without screaming?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:31 PM
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MoDo's misanthropic. Plus the way she does it is misogynistic. More from today's piece:

And she was tougher on the basketball court than the ethereal Obama
previous Miss Congeniality types Dan Quayle and W.

Her writing is very superficial and ad hominem. I can't recall the last time she wrote about policy. It is all about her "impressions".


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:37 PM
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(Those are not nested blocks. The last line is not MoDo's.)


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:38 PM
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To me it just means that they made her so miserable that she was glad to leave.

Politics aside, I've always found the stuffiness of the Times overpowering, to the point that it really bothers when they try to cover pop culture, or sports or jazz, or even classical music.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:38 PM
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490: ha, good way to put it, I was thinking more about whether she targets men or women more as people. But she does have a very fucked-up relation with femininity in general. She seems to target male and female politicians equally, but she always does so by spoofing male politicians as effeminate. And many of her anti-male comments seem driven by the idea that men like feminine qualities, which she associates with weakness. (E.g. all her stuff about how she can't get married because men only want to be with submissive inferiors, etc.). Adding to the confusion, her personal affect and style is extremely feminine. What an odd person.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:43 PM
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Well, you can say a lot against her, but MoDo is not stuffy.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:46 PM
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What if the entire paper were written in MoDo's style? Could you read it without screaming?

Hey, JMcQ, thanks for that. I needed a laugh.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:47 PM
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Pithily pwned in 492 -- MD 20/400 has a good way of putting it. MoDo has a misanthropy driven by misogyny. The "feminine" is broadly implicated in human life -- men are emotional, vulnerable, messy, and flirtatious too.

Emerson's right that the Time's pop culture coverage can be hilarious, like someone writing a thesis on why the plebs might enjoy such-and-such a phenomenon. That's changed a bit with the Style section though, which truly participates in pop idiocy rather than simply noting it from a distance. There, the annoyance doesn't come from the old pomposity, but from the smug narrowness of wealth and privilege.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 12:50 PM
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ridicule and contempt have their own law

As Woody Allen might have said: The snark knows what it wants.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:15 PM
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and what it wants is a Baker.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:22 PM
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Maureen Dowd is a critic of politics as stagecraft who is oblivious to the fact that she's not writing about substance.

Moreover, she's a crappy critic who views her job as reducing everything to a stereotype. She couldn't make it in movie criticism.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:26 PM
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She couldn't make it in movie criticism.

Hence, politics.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:41 PM
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I say "i went to school in chicago"

sometimes people assume i said "at [the University of] chicago"

i just don't want to talk about college is all


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:42 PM
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477: Its not like the last few days are the first time candidates appearances have been prominently discussed in this campaign. And I don't mean the 'clinton's cleavage' bit.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:53 PM
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503: whereas sometimes when I say "at Chicago", people say "oh, Northwestern?"


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 1:57 PM
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||

Republican National Convention arrests: I've posted something here: http://www.seeingtheforest.com/archives/2008/08/police_at_repub.htm . Mostly it's just links for people who want to track the situation, which could get nasty. Firedoglake and Glenn Greenwald are on top of things.

I'm pretty sure that Frowner and Minneapolitan haven't been seriously affected yet, though they haven't emailed me back.

If it works out that way, maybe a bail fund could be an Unfogged project.

|>

Front page post?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 2:35 PM
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shiv would not consider Palin to have foreign policy experience, not because Canada isn't really a separate country, but because Alaska isn't really part of the states.

That's great!

The baby story is quite vile and vicious.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 3:13 PM
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-


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 3:14 PM
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Since "Alaska is close to Russia!" is apparently a Palin selling point, I feel compelled to point out that I was already on top of things a year ago.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 4:34 PM
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I'm beginning to think there's only one safe ground on which to attack Palin: her callous disregard for the cute polar bears.

Seriously, going after her on the issues is the only way to go. The experience argument raises uncomfortable questions about Obama's experience (and, more specifically, about the order in which the two teams have placed their 'experienced old white guy' candidates and their 'dynamic, young, historic breakthrough' candidates), while reeking of regional and class snobbery. The "token hire" angle is a potentially disastrous mistake which could alienate a not insignificant number of women.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:37 PM
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My partner at "Seeing the Forest", Dave Johnson, calls the Palin selection a "grievance trap". If the Democrats play it wrong they might offend women, Westerners, rural Americans, attractive middle-aged women, lower middle-class women, etc. Even Canadians.

Conservative Christians are lost to the Democrats, but those other groups aren't.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:45 PM
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Art of The Luring Jim Henley To Other Things has a good debunking of the grievance trap theory.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:54 PM
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510: Surely the firing scandal is something legitimate to go after?

In a sane world being a global warming denier would be automatic disqualification from holding a key office in this country. Oh well.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:55 PM
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I am increasingly thinking that Mary Catherine is, like PGD, mcmanus, and dsquared, one of the people from whose contrary opinions I can gain confidence in my own.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:56 PM
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Sorry, 514 referred to opinions on domestic politics. The arrogant tone was... well, was intended, embarrassingly enough.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 6:57 PM
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I agree with Johnson about the grievance trap. But no way can Hillary Clinton do what he wants her to do without committing an act of gender treachery. What?! The older, seasoned veteran of these electoral-politcal-gender wars denouncing the younger, historic breakthrough candidate as a 'token'? No way can Hillary Clinton do that! Her statement the other day showed Dems the only way to go: recognize the historic breakthrough angle while emphasizing that, while it's great to finally see a woman on the GOP ticket, this is the wrong woman because of her support of Bush-McCain policies. See, you can push the Palin as wrong candidate line, and push it hard, without falling into the "token woman" trap.

Also: some women (and even some Canadians!) are a bit irked by the Hillary as Housekeeper notion. It really isn't her job to clean up the mess made by sexism. Or, even if you could convince me that it is part of her job as unity ambassador to clean up some of the mess made during the primaries, what's happening now is that the liberal-political blogs are making a whole new mess of misogyny...and no way is Hillary responsible for that.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:07 PM
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The experience argument raises uncomfortable questions about Obama's experience

I'd say Obama's got a tad more on his resume Mrs. "I was mayor of Moosenuts, AK, a town with the population of a large high school."


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:11 PM
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In a sane world being a global warming denier would be automatic disqualification from holding a key office in this country.

I've just gotten off the phone with my brother (a Democrat), who knew a fair bit of Palin's biography, but did not know that she's a global warming denier, pro-life, anti-birth-control, favors creationism, and so on.

The mainstream media is letting us down.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:12 PM
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The whole "experience needed for the toughest, most complicated and powerful job in the world" schtick is kind of vitiated by the jackass currently holding the position.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:23 PM
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I am increasingly thinking that Mary Catherine is, like PGD, mcmanus, and dsquared, one of the people from whose contrary opinions I can gain confidence in my own.

I'm delighted to play a part in the enhancement of your self-esteem.

I guess you don't much like having your own opinions countered by the opinions of others, eh? That's okay, Sifu. Just human nature, really, and none of us do.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:28 PM
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I'd say Obama's got a tad more on his resume Mrs. "I was mayor of Moosenuts, AK, a town with the population of a large high school."

Who cares? McCain has conceded the issue and, as it cut against him, Obama ought to let it stay dormant. Better to go after her on issues; we expect both Obama and Biden to do well there, and any problems with her experience should manifest themselves there. It also helps frame the "experience" issue as "knowing what the hell you're talking about," which helps against both Palin (we think) and McCain.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:29 PM
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514: Sifu, you're very versatile. Those are four very dissimilar people.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:35 PM
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I guess you don't much like having your own opinions countered by the opinions of others, eh?

No! I very much do. But, like anybody else, I apply an internal weight to those counters when considering how much, and in what direction, to weigh them. Some people, on some subjects, if they disagree with me, it implies to me that I'm on the wrong track. Some people, on some subjects, if they disagree with me, it makes me feel like I must be getting something important, here. At the current moment, when speaking purely of domestic political considerations, I find myself putting you in the latter category. This says nothing about you, particularly, only about me, and if you happen to find my political judgment often wrong, might even strike you as reassuring.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:37 PM
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522: very true, yes.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:38 PM
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Who cares?

Honestly, yes, exactly. For fuck's sake, Palin can stand or fall on her own. Maybe she'll fall on her face in a debate with Biden, or maybe he'll feel compelled to pull his punches against an attractive younger woman (this possibility is what chiefly annoys me).

This really feels to me like one to just leave alone. Don't say a word. Let her just do whatever she might do, and if it's outrageous in some way, respond, but otherwise, strategizing in advance seems, in this case, a waste of energy.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:40 PM
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I think the 'know what you're talking about' theme helps make Palin look like bush too, not ms. maverik.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:42 PM
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I'm a bit hurt, Sifu.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:43 PM
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McCain has conceded the issue and, as it cut against him, Obama ought to let it stay dormant.

It's not going to stay dormant. McCain's going to continue to portray himself as the steady voice of experience, and I don't think it's nuts for the Obama people to point out that he picked a small town mayor and borderline retard as his backup.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:44 PM
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For fuck's sake, Palin can stand or fall on her own.

Ah yes, let's just have a nice little policy campaign on the merits of the issues. That's worked just peachy in the past.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:47 PM
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528: If that happens, that happens, and decisions get made. But the agreed upon story in all the media I saw, with supporting quotations from anonymous Republicans, was that by picking Palin, McCain had taken experience off the table. So McCain will be fighting more than the Dems; he'll be fighting his own media base.

If McCain continues to raise it, maybe Obama goes after Palin's experience. But even then, I'd use Palin's experience as a bridge to a discussion about McCain's age and health, and the possibility of Presidential dementia. McCain's the one Obama's running against, after all.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:50 PM
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527: it reflects poorly on me that I often agree with you, I admit that.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:50 PM
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I'd use Palin's experience as a bridge to a discussion about McCain's age and health, and the possibility of Presidential dementia.

Word.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:53 PM
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McCain demented? How would you tell?

/yuk


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:55 PM
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531: Aw, feel the love.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:56 PM
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Call me a wimp, but while I think 'small-town mayor' is perfectly fine, 'borderline retard' is probably not the best phrasing.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 7:59 PM
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'borderline retard' is probably not the best phrasing.

Too late, I've already ordered the bumper stickers.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:04 PM
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Really, I think all we need to do with Palin is talk about global warming and abortion. Her positions are, while attractive to her base, a serious turnoff to the vast majority of "It's historically important to have a woman as VP," crowd that would otherwise vote Democratic. I wonder where she is on evolution -- if someone can find a clip of her saying something creationist, or get her to say it now, we're in good shape.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:04 PM
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536: borderline, but the border's with Russia!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:06 PM
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I wonder where she is on evolution

I'm losing track of where I've read what, but I've seen several references to her support for teaching creationism in schools.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:08 PM
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538: She made comments in 2006 that sounded sympathetic to intelligent design, but I'm not sure that evolution is ever an electoral winner, even when it should be.


Posted by: Gabriel | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:08 PM
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She's pretty hard core on evolution.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:09 PM
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Do we want to risk a near-Canadian President? I say no. She'd be serving mooseburgers at state occasions.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:12 PM
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The whole "experience needed for the toughest, most complicated and powerful job in the world" schtick is kind of vitiated by the jackass currently holding the position.

No it's not. Obama arguing "Bush=bad" is Obama arguing "experience needed for the toughest, most complicated and powerful job in the world" because Bush's experiences in life are a series of entries on failblog. McCain could arguably push this and appear a better option to both Bush and Obama at the job for both republicans and a bunch of moderates. He'd be damning his party's leader, but that could be cool on account of Bush's unfavourables exceeding his favourables even within his party.

I wouldn't do it if I were McCain, but it's doable. By a maverick.


Posted by: disaggregated | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:12 PM
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447- Hey, we all know he's guilty, just because due process and administrative procedures couldn't pin it on him doesn't mean he shouldn't be punished. Sometimes you have to take the law into your own hands. Sounds like exactly the kind of person to be on the Republican ticket.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:12 PM
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537: I'm pretty sure she's on record saying that she supported the teaching of creationism along with evolution in schools; but then later amended to say that she wouldn't mandate this. It's unclear to what extent the later amendment can be dubbed one of those horrid flip-flops. And I don't remember where I saw this, but it can't be far away.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:13 PM
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Gawd willing, the media will do its job and kick the tires on Palin. They've done it to everyone else involved (though less with McCain than I'd like), and that's the "experience" that matters.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:14 PM
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547

It's not that creationism will hurt her with her base -- I'm just surmising that most of the initial positive reaction to her has been "mediagenic feminist success story -- pistol-packing Governor with kids and she's pretty too!" Creationism moves her out of "mainstream feminist appeal" and into "wingnut".


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:15 PM
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Palin and evolution:

http://scienceblogs.com/afarensis/2006/10/27/intelligent_design_and_the_ala/


Posted by: Gabriel | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:23 PM
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The campaign of John McCain has sent a staff of eight people into Alaska to conduct background checks and vetting on Governor Sarah Palin.

Tee hee.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:24 PM
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547: Right. That was my point in mentioning the conversation with my brother earlier. Though he'd not vote Republican in the first place, he was completely unaware that Palin is a wingnut.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:29 PM
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I'm pretty sure she's on record saying that she supported the teaching of creationism along with evolution in schools; but then later amended to say that she wouldn't mandate this.

Conviction sans executive overreaching is exactly what the doctor ordered for the republican party. Someone was self-dubbed a compassionate conservative on this account once, but...oh forget it.


Posted by: disaggregated | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:34 PM
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549 becomes funnier when one heads over to the official McCain site and sees that the sum total of what they have on Palin appears to be the text of her acceptance/hello speech. No bio at all.

(Frowner, I'm glad you're OK.)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:47 PM
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The campaign of John McCain has sent a staff of eight people into Alaska to conduct background checks and vetting on Governor Sarah Palin.

UR DOIN IT RONG


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:58 PM
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Do we want to risk a near-Canadian President? I say no. She'd be serving mooseburgers at state occasions.

For real, my (Canadian) parents like Palin.

Oh, they think she's a wingnut, of course. But since their view of Americans has largely been formed by sensationalistic (and grossly unfair, of course) exposures of the true craziness of (some subset of) our neighbours to the south (docudramas on infant beauty pageants and the like), they're sort of de-sensitized on that score.

Well, she seems like a good person, and isn't she a lovely mother? And imagine being the mother of five children while serving as governor of the state of Alaska! (the human to bear ratio of Alaska's population doesn't automatically strike them as an argument worth pursuing: they're from one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world, after all). They're even, as good Catholics, willing to forgive Palin for whatever kooky non-RC sect she might happen to belong, because the Americans are just like that, after all, and how admirable of her to give birth to that child, God love his heart, when there's some out there who might have done differently, if you know what I mean, and isn't she a lovely mother, and nobody's fool, either, sure, didn't she take on corruption or something, I think I might have read something in the Globe and Mail...

Not saying my parents' impressions are anything to worry about, they're not even citizens of this once-great republic, after all. Can't help suspecting the Dems underestimate the appeal of Palin at their own peril, though.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 8:58 PM
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Unless Palin's swallowed up by a scandal, MC, I you're right.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:07 PM
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think you're right


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:08 PM
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the Dems underestimate the appeal of Palin at their own peril

Peril. Peril. Well, then, let's skewer her. Just to be safe.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:11 PM
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It just occurred to me: you know how you scare a barracuda* if you're face to face with one (I have been)? You blow air at it: a burst of bubbles. So surprising that is that it hurries off. True.

* Palin's nickname was Sarah the Barracuda.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:23 PM
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I have had moose burgers and caribou burgers with a bunch of stoned and drunk Canadians and eleventy googleplex mosquitos, in the Yukon, on the Arctic Circle, on the summer solstice. The Canadians then left the remaining moose and caribou meat, raw and uncovered, just yards away from where my friend and I had pitched our tent. An act of blatant provocation in grizzly country, of course, but we escaped unscathed. We also visited the home of a beauty-contest contest winner somewhere around Bethel, Alaska, who was not Sarah Palin.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:34 PM
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Damn you, Google. Googolplex.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 9:37 PM
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I am increasingly thinking that Mary Catherine is, like PGD, mcmanus, and dsquared, one of the people from whose contrary opinions I can gain confidence in my own.

Well, my belief that people were overreacting in their view that THE CLINTONS ARE CRAZED EVIL RIGHT-WING BASTARDS LOOKING TO DESTROY THE PARTY SPLUTTER JUST YOU WATCH SPUTTER GAG BLEARGH turned out to be 100% correct.

Most of what goes on around here is about the narcisissm of small differences, personalities rubbing up against each other, and different styles of emotional venting in response to the traumas of the Bush years. Hardly considered judgements. I'm actually not sure what Sifu's political views are, except that I'm pretty sure he would love to see a Democrat punch a Republican in the face on live TV.

He's reliably very funny, though, which is more than I can say for me.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:15 PM
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* Palin's nickname was Sarah the Barracuda.

BBC headline yesterday: 'McCain Unveils the Barracuda.'

I have to admit, I laughed out loud at that headline, even if it means Sifu flunking me out yet again on the ideological purity test. That some nickname earned by some nobody at some high school that nobody has ever heard of, was now being dignified and reified by the attention of the BBC: well, it's a funny old world, after all, I guess, and some shit is just purely amusing even when it's not all that funny....


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:18 PM
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100% correct.

It's odd that the Clintons can't keep their surrogates from trashing Obama, isn't it? Or do you think that W-lfs-n, Ferraro, Davis and others are all freelancing?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:19 PM
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People freelance a lot more in DC than you might realize; especially on the Democratic side, people tend to be free agent consultants who come together temporarily for campaigns.

Anyway, Ferraro is freelancing for sure; she's been off the reservation completely for some time. As for W-lfs-n, have you seen his editorial in today's WaPo? I wouldn't call that "trashing Obama".

Have no idea about Davis, I don't follow the cable news chat stuff hardly at all, it tends to make me sick.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 10:39 PM
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If I were the campaign, I'd hammer her on the issues, and hammer McCain's judgment in picking her. Not that she's inexperienced, or unfit to lead, no, no, but that for all the attention McCain paid, she could have been married to a polar bear. And that shows he doesn't care about the U.S., just about getting elected, etc., etc. VP choices are mostly irrelevant anyway.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:16 PM
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PGD is no doubt amongst the sanest to ever post here, which surely raises questions about his judgment and fundamental basic sanity.

And Ari, what the fuck? It's no coincidence that...you're going to start sounding like a wacky conspiracy theorist if you start taking on board some of the best-loved locutions of the crazy wacky conspiracy theorists! C'mon, mavourneen, you know I love you like a fellow fan of Budge McFarland, and wasn't it just easier when it was just the Buffalo team against the boys from Napanee, and we kicked their sorry arses for certain? But it's just not like anymore, and probably never was, and it's not the fault of Bill or Hillary Clinton.

The liberal blogger boyz really need to let go of the Hillary Hate (now easily transferred to Sarah Palin, so: bipartisan or post-partisan, or whatever we're now supposed to call it, contempt for women: progress!). They hate a woman in a pantsuit more than they love whatever it is they profess to hold dear, and they may well cost Obama this election. If they lose, you know damn well they're going to blame it on Hillary.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:42 PM
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566: You should listen to a recent Fresh Air discussion with Josh Green about the friction between the Clinton and Obama camps. It's available on podcast, I think. Apparently, as the convention approached, HRC wanted to hold on to her voters in some fashion as leverage within the party, which is understandable if, apparently, not the standard operating procedure. This was not well received by the Obama camp. (Green also believes, and believes everyone in the political world believes, that Clinton wants to run again.)

This stuff may get blown out of proportion--people fight over power, and are often dicks about it--but it isn't made up out of whole cloth.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:50 PM
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566: Who are the 'liberal blogger boyz' of whom you speak? Maybe I just haven't been reading enough blogs the last few days, but most of the criticism I see of Palin is completely legitimate, not misogynistic or some sort of transference of attitudes toward Clinton. I mean, Palin is just a complete wingnut (global-warming denier, anti-abortion, creationist). The was-she-pregnant-or-not talk disturbs me, but has been pretty limited.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-31-08 11:57 PM
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It's a wacky conspiracy theory to suggest that people who have spent over a decade representing first Bill and then Hillary Clinton on television and in print media are still representing the Clintons on television and in print media?


Posted by: Gabriel | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:04 AM
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566: there's also a bunch of "what kind of mother..." piety & a smattering of speculation on whether she was pregnant with her first kid when she married her husband, cracks about beauty queens & VPILFs, etc. More in comments, Kos diaries, etc. than in posts by prominent "liberal blogger boyz", but it is really, really gross.


Posted by: Katherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:06 AM
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566: I don't know what to say, MC. I understand your position; you've articulated it very clearly. What it has to do with me, though, I've never quite understood. From the first, I've said that the Palin choice was probably, given the options, a very shrewd one. And before the Clintons began race-baiting in the primary, I was exclusively pro-Obama and never, to my knowledge, anti-Clinton. That said, I still think it's noteworthy that many of Senator Clinton's highest-profile surrogates have been tepid, at best, in their support of Obama.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:06 AM
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A scene from northern life. (From what I remember, the music isn't very good.)

I wonder if the campaign site is going to include recipes for moose turd pie.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:09 AM
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The liberal blogger boyz really need to let go of the Hillary Hate (now easily transferred to Sarah Palin

Are you saying that this is what is happening or suggesting that this is what is possible? If it is the former, you gotta be kidding. Granted, it's not her fault, any more than it was Harriet Myers when she was nominated for the Supreme Court, but Palin doesn't have the experience to be prez and even her conservative supporters have suggested that were McCain to pass away in February 2009, it would be prudent for Palin to appoint a qualified vice president immediately and then resign shortly thereafter.

Both conservatives and liberals are addressing Palin's inadequacies; but it's somehow wrong for liberal male bloggers to do so FTW?


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:13 AM
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566: I forgot to mention two things. First, if you ever hear me saying anything about Palin that is sexist, call me on it. Like you, I think gendered attacks on her are both wrong and likely to backfire. Second, if Obama loses, which I really don't think is going to happen, there will be plenty of time for post-mortems. But, in fairness to your argument, I would say, as of right this second, that the Clinton campaign will and should come in for a fair bit of criticism. If that makes me a conspiracist, so be it. Even paranoids have real enemies.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:15 AM
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Who are the 'liberal blogger boyz' of whom you speak?

Well, Josh Marshall, for one, who leaves out a few pertinent facts in his rush to judgment on "troopergate," and whose site, once highly respected, is now a place where people speculate wildly and freely, and with no apparent commitment to reality, so far as that term is understood by me, on the meaning and significance of Sarah Palin's amniotic fluid. I'm not even kidding, there's currently a discussion (hosted by Josh Marshall!) on Sarah Palin's amniotic fluid. There's a general consensus in that thread that a demand for DNA tests would not be out of line, and could somebody please work up a timeline? They're convinced this is "AN IMPORTANT ISSUE!" The fate of the republic in the hands of a woman, and so on and etc.

Name names? Well, yeah, I guess I could do that, if pressed. It's not as though I don't have a shortlist! It seems a bit Stalinist of you to demand full disclosure though...


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:38 AM
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Yeah, because TPM now has reader diaries, and like every other fucking site in creation to allow reader diaries, people post a bunch of crap. To blame Marshall for that is total bullshit. As is the discussion of Sarah Palin's amniotic fluid.


Posted by: Katherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:45 AM
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to blame Marshall for that is total bullshit.

No, it really is not.

And you're tripping hard if you truly believe otherwise (which I very much doubt that you do, btw, but I don't want to raise issues of just basic honesty and integrity). Whatever Marshall allows to be posted under his name/brand, I'm going to hold him responsible for that. Total bullshit to pretend he doesn't have ultimate authorial control, imho. He allows the speculations about amniotic fluid, because he went over to the dark side last March or so (the insider-y joke on the Internets is: 'Who kidnapped Josh Marshall, and couldn't we just pay the ransom already?'). He is no longer a reliable source of information for me, he's a whore, basicallly, is what I'm saying, and since I'm old-fashionedly not at all genderly-benderly in support of whoredom, to say that I think he's fillthy is to tell you what I think. And please don't email me with your vehement and indignant objections: I'm a wife and a mother, and I really don't have time for your shit.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:21 AM
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The kid stuff is horrible and way out of bounds. But the more I think about it, it's a big long-term loss for the Republicans that Obama is no longer the most inexperienced candidate on a ticket this year. Regardless of how charming her bio is, after discussing Palin for a while, Obama feels like a seasoned vet. As the campaign wears on, the contrast will be great for Obama.

And before the Clintons began race-baiting in the primary, I was exclusively pro-Obama and never, to my knowledge, anti-Clinton. That said, I still think it's noteworthy that many of Senator Clinton's highest-profile surrogates have been tepid, at best, in their support of Obama.

Neither Hillary nor Bill have been "tepid" in their support of Obama. As for the "surrogates" you named above (and I think the notion that "surrogates" exist outside the campaign context is seriously oversimplified), the influence of their disappointed mutterings on low-viewership cable chat shows is totally negligible, obscure inside baseball stuff, compared to what Hillary and Bill have been saying.

Also, did you even read the W-lfs-n editorial I linked in 564? If you want to look for something done at Hillary's behest, look to that (a considered statement of party unity in the high-profile establishment press), rather than what some cable interviewer can get them to say by way of trying to salvage their rep as good consultants.

You're a historian. Name a primary loser truly close to taking the nomination who gave this level of support to the nominee and behaved with such grace prior to and during the convention. Maybe Hart in 1984, who was lobbying for the VP slot? He was young and had every expectation of being the nominee in future years.

I also don't accept the "race-baiting" thing, but let's not reopen that.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:25 AM
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I don't want to raise issues of just basic honesty and integrity [...] I'm a wife and a mother, and I really don't have time for your shit.

Now might be a good time for you to step away from the computer for a few minutes.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:29 AM
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Actually, Ari, let me apologize for and redact 578. Not that it's so offensive or out of bounds, but I've come to feel that not letting the other guy get the last word is a subtle dimension of impoliteness around here. This is an insoluble dispute that is A) a matter of perspective and not fact, B) no longer a very important dispute anyway, to the point that one might wonder what exactly is being disputed.

As I said above, the narcissism of small differences. Democrats love to argue.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:49 AM
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I'm a wife and a mother an asshole, and I really don't have time for your shit just pissed away what minimal credibility I ever had around here.


Posted by: NickFranklin | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:51 AM
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You raise a fair question about other candidates who have come this close, PGD, and I don't have a good answer. But in the end, I'm not sure it matters. My issue, above, related to the here and now. That there may be a historical precedent for this kind of behavior seems plausible. Again, though, that's not really the issue for me.

As for the WaPo piece, I read it. And? W-lfs-n also described the Palin choice as potentially appealing to many Clinton voters. Although that may be true, why say it? And why now? Why right after the convention? Ferraro, I'll admit, is a wild card. But again, you don't think that Senator or President Clinton could call her and say, "Please, Gerry, could you just shut up between now and November? We really can't lose this election. And you're fanning flames that are best left to die." Davis is another similar case. "Lanny, you're taking a job on Fox News right now? Why? You have plenty of money. You have other options. Why make that choice?"

Maybe the answer is that Bill and Hillary have much less influence over their loyalists than I suppose. But I think that's the purest form of nonsense, particularly because she remains one of the most powerful people in the party, a woman who well might run again four or eight years from now. And I'd add another thing: we're not talking about mid-level campaign staffers; we're talking about top people. I'm confident that past failed campaigns have seen staffers go on to criticize the party's nominee. But have the critics been people as close to the candidate as those folks described above? Again, I don't know. And it's probably not relevant to the issue at hand.

Finally, just as you don't accept that the Clintons engaged in race-baiting, I increasingly don't accept that either Bill or Hillary have been ironclad in their support of Obama. And while we're not talking about race-baiting, how, in light of the e-mails from the Clinton campaign, can you sustain your position?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:51 AM
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Nick, I don't know you. And it's likely that you're a terrific person who's much more established around here than I am. But given that MC was talking to Katherine and me, why don't you stay out of the argument? Or at least please be clear that you speak only for yourself.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:53 AM
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580: You are, as (almost) ever, a peach.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 1:54 AM
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And while I know that it's totally deprecated to post serially, as I'm now doing with a vengeance, I want to add that my initial query was directed at PGD's 561.2. I was just pointing out that his claims of total victory in a longstanding argument seem somewhat overblown to me. That was all.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:01 AM
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"And please don't email me with your vehement and indignant objections: I'm a wife and a mother, and I really don't have time for your shit."

the hell? have I ever emailed you, to defend Marshall's honor or otherwise?


Posted by: Katherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:02 AM
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583: I have virtually no established reputation here, ari, certainly far less than you. And I'll respect your request. I was expressing my personal opinion that Mary Catherine's 577 crossed an important and ugly line.


Posted by: NickFranklin | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:03 AM
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Also, I don't actually think HRC can fairly be held responsible for controlling what former campaign employees/consultants say once they start taking paychecks from Fox News instead of her campaign.


Posted by: Katherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:05 AM
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Yeah, the last line of 577 is bit much, and I wish could take it back, or rewrite it or something. What's funny, though, is I'm pretty sure everyone here knows I'm not even a citizen and don't even have a vote. In American electoral-political terms, I don't mean shit, I don't even have a dog in this fight. And why anyone should want to listen to me is beyond my ken. And yet, I feel still vaguely harrased or something, just for not automatically falling in line, just for not quite thinking the groupthink quite enthusiastically enough.

Crazy, eh?

I predicted Sarah Palin two months ago, btw, and Christ how I now wish I had posted to that political predictions blog to get some credit for it! I knew she was coming, I said so in real-life time only to be dismissed as unrealistic or something. I think I might know how to undermine her authority while not alienating miilions of Clinton voters, but I'll keep it to myself, what do I know?


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:10 AM
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589 in response to 579.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:16 AM
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587: That's fine, Nick. And I didn't mean to jump on you. I just wanted to be clear, especially in light of my quasi-involvement with the Stras/Namond situation the other night, that MC's credibility remains unchanged in my eyes.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:16 AM
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MC, as another non-voting non-citizen, I think you're pretty much right on with all of that. I don't really understand the vehemence of people's response. There's been a lot of fairly despicable misogyny around from a lot of people who should know better, and denying that puzzles me no end (and to be honest, makes me question my own judgment a little).


Posted by: wispa | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:19 AM
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'borderline retard' is probably not the best phrasing.

Too late, I've already ordered the bumper stickers.

Ha! Good to see you around again, gswift.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:27 AM
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591: Fair enough, ari, and no problem, though I appreciate the clarification. For the record, the vehemence of my initial response had far more to do with the vitriol of 577 than its politics. I don't deny the presence in recent liberal bloggy discourse of "despicable misogyny," to borrow wispa's phrase, one bit.


Posted by: NickFranklin | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:30 AM
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I really wasn't disagreeing with MC about what's being said about Palin. The Clinton supporter I know best totally agrees with her, & I think she's absolutely right--speaking as a pregnant lady, it's really, really, really gross for the liberal blogosphere to be passing judgment on or making crap up about Sarah Palin & her family & her medical decisions. Gee, how many months pregnant do Daily Kos diarists think I look? Am I a bad mother for staying up late working on a brief for all of labor day weekend? Would they like to express opinions about my bodily fluids? etc. Our only disagreement is over which & what % of liberal bloggers are responsible for the grossness. I'm not sure why my comment generated the most personally hostile response of the various ones on this thread, other than my long history of being a dishonest "post-feminist" traitor to my gender etc. etc. etc.


Posted by: Katherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:39 AM
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I was expressing my personal opinion that Mary Catherine's 577 crossed an important and ugly line.

Jesus Christ, please tell me what important and ugly line I crossed (I'm baffled! frankly, but honestly intrigued...) before I go on back where I belong to Renfrew County. You cosmopolitan types are a bit much for me, maybe, and you play a deep game. No, don't hold back! I'm pretty sure I can take it, I'm not some citified sissy-boy after all. But I'm not just another pretty face on the internets, either, I hasten to add, and I'm going to hold you to some minimal standard of narrative coherence, whilst making all due allowance for the impulse toward truthiness. Out with it, Comrade!: Tell me for what sin of commission or omission you would have me officially denounced.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:43 AM
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y'all all need to chill out. I'm trying to think how ogged would handle this. um...suddenly be nasty to bitchphd for no reason? no, wait, swimming post that reveals some deep-seated neurosis we can all argue about?


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:44 AM
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597: You're more than welcome to be nasty to me. I'm mired in self-loathing as it is, so why no pile on?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:50 AM
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596: Seriously, after 577, you're accusing me of being sanctimonious? I'll bow out here, thanks.


Posted by: NickFranklin | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 2:58 AM
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an important and ugly line

That line's important and ugly like Henry Kissinger, Ariel Sharon, and the Pope.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:05 AM
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c'mon, people, get into the spirit with me! wwod?


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:11 AM
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BitchPhD is banned!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:12 AM
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let's all reflect on where this discord could finally end up: with ari trying to cut off his arm in a denny's in modesto. and none of us wants that.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:14 AM
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Not in Denny's, no. Maybe in some artisanal slow-food restaurant with an artisan's homemade slow-cutting tools.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:16 AM
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wwod?

Quit the blog?

Wait...do you think we should all quit the blog? Should we quit all of our own blogs as well? I mean, I'm game. But I need a bit more guidance, a firm hand on the tiller. Specifics would be helpful. A bulleted list, maybe.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:18 AM
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Tasering a guy who's already stabbing himself also seems to be crossing an important and ugly line.


Posted by: NickFranklin | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:18 AM
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I'm ready to put my firm hand on your tiller, ari. Just say the word.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:20 AM
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A tiller is a cashier, right?


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:24 AM
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Your offer will be my last thought as I drift off to sleep, ben. I'll see you in my dreams.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:24 AM
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grabbed a butter knife off a customer's table and began stabbing himself in the right arm near the biceps

Trying to cut off one's arm with a butter knife implies that one has not carefully weighed the available options. I really don't think this guy has the judgment to be president.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:26 AM
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At least the dude considered the butter knife before, like, Thermonuclear War. I say qualified.


Posted by: NickFranklin | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:32 AM
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I'm mired in self-loathing as it is, so why no pile on?

Ari, you haven't even earned your self-loathing, imho, and with all due respect to your grandmother, until you've failed to recite the words to Irving Layton's angry, beautiful paean to his mother and to the very condition of mortality (am I crossing another ugly line here?, to gesture toward the existence of Jews in Montreal, and of Irish shantyboys in Renfrew County? Oh well, I'm just bigoted like that, I guess, and that's how we roll up in Canada).

Love this so much, and I have it on tape, where he sounds so justifiably angry:

When I saw my mother's head on the cold pillow,
Her white waterfalling hair in the cheeks' hollows,
I thought, quietly circling my grief, of how
She had loved God but cursed extravagantly his creatures.

Also the "proud carnal assertion" of "the toss of her gold earrings": so heartbreakingly esxellent.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:32 AM
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but would we even be having this discussion about the butter knife if he had been a woman? I don't fucking think so.

and anyway, if barack obama, who has never even tried to cut off his arm with anything, even a wobbly plastic knife from the take-out window, is qualified to be president, then surely this man is. real americans don't care about your fancy-pants knife decisions, "oh, he should have used a circular meat-saw!" "he should have used the medium-sized cleaver I saw recommended in cook's illustrated!" no way. this is the type of real american whose life story, and willingness to rush into denny's and begin just getting on with what needed to be done is going to resonate with the voters.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:36 AM
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I think that credibility is one of the things to think about here. In this case I don't exactly agree with MC and am personally inclined to let the venom flow, but on the other hand she's probably my oldest internet friend. Others with great credibility who have expressed similar views are Digby, Melissa McEwan, and Jeralyn Merritt. So maybe we should take this as an opportunity to learn.

I think that MC is right (and this is the practical, useful part) that if the pileon gets too nasty, Palin might draw some sympathy votes even from people who don't agree with her and maybe even from people who wouldn't really want her to be President. A lot of women, looking at Palin and her life story (and her success at looking good at every point in her life), will be totally sympathetic and admiring. My good, non-PUMA sister will vote for Obama, but she would have loved to have had Palin's life.

The black / woman comparison is apropos. Most people show a fair amount of restraint in talking about the very few black Republicans, whereas people tend to let go more when it comes to Republican women.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 5:10 AM
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NPR continues the horrible reporting on Palin. Lots of gushing. Not many actual facts.

Although in the midst of the gushing, the host did get this exchange in:
Reporter:
"She is really tough on the oil industry!!!"

Host:
"Tough because she wanted them to develop faster?"


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 5:56 AM
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Yeah, what we really need to do with Palin is back away from her crotch, and from her gender generally, and just talk issues. At which point she's really not that formidable -- I think a lot of people who would never vote for her may end up kind of liking her because she's got an appealing biography, but she's far enough out there politically that she's really not going to peel off the kind of swing voters that are strongly concerned with seeing more women in power.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 6:01 AM
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616: Actually, for the time being I think the Obama campaign should pretty much back away from her entirely. Wait and see. Given the current state of the race it is not a move that they should feel "forced" to respond to in any significant way. So nothing really needs to come from the campaign on "experience" or "judgment" or 'troopergate" (it has its own legs), or even really very much on her take on the issues. McCain might even get a small poll bump out of it. Let it all go, there is plenty of time. And anything they do feel the need to say now should be cast in terms of McCain. So far I think the Obama campaign has done this fairly well.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 6:20 AM
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I think that Obama shouldnt address the issue of her last pregnancy, but I do think it illustrates her horrible attitude toward reproductive issues.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 6:25 AM
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It's not total madness to assert that some former Clinton associates are still pushing against Obama, and it's not just liberal boyz who are doing it.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 7:54 AM
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The annoying thing about it isn't objecting to what, e.g., W-lfs-n or Ferraro are saying, it's the attributing it to a Clinton plan, even in the absence of any obvious good it does her. They were associates of Clinton's, they are being assholes, but that doesn't mean that everything they do is her fault.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:04 AM
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Sure. I'm somewhat persuaded by Ari's point, above, that HRC ought to be able to rein them in, and it's troubling that she hasn't.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:11 AM
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I've speculated that her team is breaking up now that they realize that she'll just be a Senator for at least the next four years. So she's starting all over again, and so are they. I presume that her former loyalists are persona non grata now at the DNC.

I don't think that anything that comes from her ex-lackeys should be regarded as coming from her (look at Dick Morris), but one of the the thinks I hate mostabout the Clintons is the people they brought into the party: Morris, Penn, Davis, W-lfs-n, McAulliffe.

As PGD points out above, though, W-lfs-n seems to be getting behind Obama. The whole statement is better than the excerpt floating around.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:21 AM
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Speculating about what she ought to be able to do to control people seems out of place unless the lousy things they're saying make sense as service to her, which they just don't. If she were trying to kneecap Obama, she'd be trying harder. People say things: Gerry Ferraro has been in politics for a lot longer than Clinton has, and I can't see any reason to think that she's a totally controlled marionette.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:22 AM
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They were associates of Clinton's, they are being assholes, but that doesn't mean that everything they do is her fault.

It's a less stringent standard than:

(a) holding the Bush 2000 campaign responsible for the "illegitimate black baby" rumors in South Carolina, or
(b) holding JMM responsible for things said by diarists on his site.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:25 AM
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I'm going to guess that if W-lfs-n's working for Fox News now, Clinton probably doesn't have all that much control over him these days. Ferraro's been a loose cannon for a while now. Clinton just needs to do what she has been doing: "why'd you support me? the issues, right?'

I can't see what good it would do Clinton to try to beat an incumbent McCain/Palin in 2012.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:27 AM
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(a) holding the Bush 2000 campaign responsible for the "illegitimate black baby" rumors in South Carolina,

No it's not, and thinking it is is nuts. Bush was actively running against McCain when those rumors were being circulated -- they were directly related to immediate electoral advantage for Bush. To tell a story where Ferraro's latest comments do anything useful for Clinton, you need a four-year plan with a whole lot of crazy long-shots in it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:29 AM
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||

Gustav downgraded to Grade II. Ari was Heebie-like.

|>


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:31 AM
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The Ferraro thing is interesting, because if I told you about two women, one who was voting for the Democrats because of concerns about the Supreme Court and reproductive rights, and one who was voting for the Republicans because all that SC and abortion stuff wasn't really relevant, and I told you to put a label on the one you thought must be 'post-feminist'.....


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:38 AM
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I predict the National Enquirer will take care of the mess of contradictions surrounding the Palins' baby, and that the right wingers who so vehemently stood up for the NE's credibility during the Rielle Hunter mess will suddenly discover that it's just a grocery store tabloid. As with Edwards' (and Clinton's and McCain's) affairs, I don't think it has the slightest bearing on someone's qualifications or fitness for office, but it's too weird a story to just go away.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:41 AM
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Gustav downgraded to Grade II. Ari was Heebie-like.

Yeah, but now W and McPalin get to tromp around in light rain and claim credit for the non-destruction. If they're lucky, a Nat Guardsman will shoot a looter dead, too.
.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:42 AM
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To tell a story where Ferraro's latest comments do anything useful for Clinton, you need a four-year plan with a whole lot of crazy long-shots in it.

The crazy long-shot being that she wants to run again? That she'll be able to get a team together to mount a credible campaign? We disagree to what extent those are long-shots.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:44 AM
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No, the crazy longshot being that some half-hearted sniping at Obama would change anything in a way that would make her more likely to be elected president. Although running another credible campaign strikes me as a longshot itself, if not a crazy one.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 8:46 AM
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unless the lousy things they're saying make sense as service to her

Who benefits from continued complaining that Obama didn't choose her as his running mate? The way I see it, it benefits McCain in the short term and, arguably, Hillary in four years.

I don't think the Clinton folk are encouraging people like W-lfs-n, but there must be some reason he's saying what he's saying. If it's just out of longstanding loyalty to the Clintons, a simple, "Howard, enough already," ought to do it. If she's already said this, and he's still saying it, then I hereby absolve Hillary Clinton of all wrongdoing.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:00 AM
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Howard W-lfs-n in this morning's Washington Post.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:00 AM
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633: Thing is, Clinton has to know that fairly or not, if her people go around undermining the Democrats this year and they lose, she's going to get blamed for it and the following four years. She'd have to have a very high opinion of her political skills to think that she'd be able to recover from that.

Plus, one would have to think that she cares less about her issues than the average politician.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:09 AM
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W-lfs-n was better than expected, and my opinion of him has improved:

No one in recent history had attempted this kind of a political conversation with 75,000 people. Barack Obama pulled it off.

This isn't exactly wrong:

Progress in America is never cheap, and even today history exacts a price for Obama's victory -- the dreams of electing the first female president, the dreams of so many who rushed toward Hillary Clinton on rope lines across America and refused to give up her hand and their hopes. Today these dreams are giving way to another kind of progress.

HOWEVER (as I've been saying for months):
as soon as Edwards dropped out, two of the loyalest Democratic constituencies went head-to-head, and it was a structural fact that one of them had to lose. Neither had ever gotten that far before, but nonetheless, one was sure to lose. This was a wonderful thing with a booby trap hidden inside. A lot of people seem to have been unaware of the booby trap.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:09 AM
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As best as I can reckon, W-lfs-n is being vilified for having said that Palin might peel away some Clinton voters and Edwards' presence in the race aided Obama.

Could it be that W-lfs-n was just offering his genuine opinion? I mean, the first point is dubious, but it's obviously McCain's calculation, and people on this very thread argue that Dems must be careful how they treat Palin, lest they encourage people to support her.

The latter opinion, about Edwards, is pretty clearly wrong, but so what? You've never heard someone make bogus excuses for failure? You've never done it yourself?

The problem with Hillary is she employed people like Penn and W-lfs-n in the first place, but it seems odd to me to question her loyalty to the party or Obama at this point.

Tim proposes that if Obama loses, Clinton supporters are offering a counter-narrative that will aid Clinton in four years, but this is nonsense. There will be several years to offer that narrative and (in Tim's alternative universe), the stronger Clinton's support is now, the greater credibility that narrative will have.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:15 AM
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In no way did I mean to denigrate the ND flood plains. Indeed, it was precisely because of their critical importance that I proposed that they be intensively studied.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:24 AM
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Whoops.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:26 AM
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No, the crazy longshot being that some half-hearted sniping at Obama would change anything in a way that would make her more likely to be elected president.

1. It's probably worth noting that there is a continuum that runs from directing allies' statements to not reigning allies in, and a range of options in between those two points.

2. People probably always credit too much the effects of individual events on an election: the illegitimate black baby rumors, the Swift Boat Vets, the Willie Horton ad, the picture of Dukakais in a tank, his response to Shaw's question, etc.

3. I believe that professional political people run out hits. That's what makes them professionals, and why they engage in things like the illegitimate black baby rumors, e-mail campaigns about Barack HUSSAIN Obama, etc.

4. The relevant issue, I think, is what Clinton thinks is a long-shot (or, alternatively, what level of long-shot her team is willing to act on). The best proxy for measuring that, at least that I can think of, is the team's behavior in the closing months of the campaign, as regards seating MI and FL, etc. My understanding is that the released memos indicate that her team saw those as long-shots, though I might be wrong. (I'm not arguing about whether any of her behavior was illegitimate.)

5. The effect doesn't need to be very large, as it's a close election. Indeed, it's best if it's small, because that makes it easier to deny.

All that said, I don't have a problem with any of Clinton's own recent behavior, and I think people complaining about that are mistaken. And, at this point, it's Obama's problem: he's the candidate, he has people in positions of power in the party, and his team needs to be sufficiently skilled to shape the behavior of potentially wayward allies. (Of course, pointing out that the such allies will be blamed for a loss seems like the most obvious enforcement mechanism. What are you going to do?)


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:33 AM
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There will be several years to offer that narrative and (in Tim's alternative universe), the stronger Clinton's support is now, the greater credibility that narrative will have.

First things first. And the first thing is for Obama to lose.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:35 AM
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Eh, I give up. You'll believe she's plotting against him regardless of what she says or does from here on out.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:39 AM
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Ha! Good to see you around again, gswift.

Thanks!

Yeah, what we really need to do with Palin is back away from her crotch

No doubt. I imagine that thing is called The Barracuda for a reason.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:43 AM
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642: I'm not sure it's specific to Clinton or this election. I think we just have different opinions about how hyper-ambitious people behave.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:45 AM
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644: Yeah. Mine aren't so much shaped by my high opinion of people's morals (although there's some of that -- I do think even the very ambitious serve their ideological beliefs as well as their personal ambitions to some extent), as of my low opinion of how subtle a plan can be before there's any sense at all to trying it. I'm trying to figure out whether you're very naive about what sort of plans are practical, or whether you're personally a mindbogglingly successful Machiavellian plotter who thinks everyone else is as skilled as you.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 9:52 AM
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about what sort of plans are practical

I think that it's a mistake to conceptualize it in that way. I assume most projects, including campaigns, are--like the people associated with them--messy, with conflicting goals and a sense of uncertainty about what the next best step is. And pursuit of the goal of the project is often fairly catch-as-catch-can. You do what seems necessary tomorrow and assume that you'll figure out the rest on the fly. I think that's particularly true of--in increasing order, probably--political projects, political campaigns, and the Clinton campaign that, back to Bill's first run, had a reputation for being fierce, rapid, and organizationally loose. And so you end up with behaviors that seem to run into each other, with neither being a particular mistake because they reflect the contradictory instincts of the people in the campaign and even the candidate herself.

I would have thought that this was a pretty common experience in life. Most of us, thought I, have had a friend who was one day unbelievably supportive and next undermining, and we've all spent time trying to figure out what that person was up to. Some of us have probably even been that friend at some point in our lives.

you're personally a mindbogglingly successful Machiavellian plotter

Gawd, I sincerely wish. But I think you're overestimating the complexity and rarity of what's going on. While I'm not very good at it, I have a sense that I've attempted something similar to what's being described above in the past. (I suspect that it involved a woman, and that I failed. (Fucking Jesse.) Ah, youth.)


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 11:58 AM
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Well, this ought to calm down the Palin talk around here.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:51 PM
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Oops. Way to read the other thread, big guy.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 12:52 PM
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Senator Barack Obama, the Democratic nominee, was asked at a brief press conference in Monroe, Mich., about the suggestion by some Republicans that Democrats - particularly liberal bloggers - were trying to advance rumors about the Palin family.

"Our people were not involved in any way in this and they will not be," Mr. Obama snapped, his voice raised. "And if I ever thought there was somebody in my campaign that was involved in something like that, they'd be fired, O.K.?"

Mr. Obama said the pregnancy "has no relevance to Governor Palin's performance as a governor or her potential performance as a vice president." He added that, "my mother had me when she was 18. How a family deals with issues and teen-age children - that shouldn't be the topic of our politics."

"So," he added, "I would strongly urge people to back off these kinds of stories."

This kind of thing is why I love Obama. He's way classier than I am.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 3:56 PM
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my mother had me when she was 18

Obama's kung fu is strong.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 1-08 5:16 PM
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When it rains, it pours: another woman claims she, not Sarah Palin, won Miss Congeniality that year.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 2-08 12:13 AM
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642

"Eh, I give up. You'll believe she's plotting against him regardless of what she says or does from here on out."

First I think it is obvious that Clinton has a better chance of becoming President eventually if Obama loses this time.

So to the extent that Clinton still wants the Presidency she is acting against her interest in supporting Obama. Many people find it hard to be selfless in such situations. And of course it would be easy for her to be bitter about her close loss in the primary.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09- 2-08 12:18 AM
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The headline for the link in 651 is quite generous, given the content.

Asked whether she would support Palin because she knows her, Gwin said: "I wouldn't support her if she was my very best friend. I support Obama and don't share any of her (Palin's) politics. She's very shallow."

Is that congeniality we can believe in?


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09- 2-08 12:46 AM
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Red State Update on Palin.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09- 2-08 1:49 PM
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