Re: When did you hate Bush most?

1

The Mission Accomplished aircraft carrier speech. Seeing him strut down the deck like a First World Idi Amin with nukes to me represents one of the low points of US Presidential history. (And it would have been just as bad, if not worse, even if subsequent events had not unfolded as they did in Iraq.)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 3:59 PM
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I hated him most when he was addressing the nation telling us that his stupid war had begun.


Posted by: Adam Kotsko | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 3:59 PM
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"To the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee."



Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:04 PM
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Let's not get hasty. We've got another couple months' worth of fuckups and evil deeds before we can really start to make a reasoned judgment.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:05 PM
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1 brings up a good point, in terms of it being worse if he'd actually succeeded in Iraq -- since Bush is such an obvious failure and just as obviously oblivious as to the reasons, it's very difficult to avoid contaminating one's hatred with some admixture of pity.


Posted by: Adam Kotsko | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:07 PM
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I don't think it's possible to choose just one moment.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:07 PM
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I think I hated him the most the day after he was re-elected. I was near catatonic with 7 different kinds of rage and loathing.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:08 PM
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That hearing that wasn't under oath with Cheney by his side to help.


Posted by: Mo MacArbie | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:08 PM
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4: You're right, it's got to be all over before you can say it was the best time you ever had.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:11 PM
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Katrina. Fucking incompetent thug.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:11 PM
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The Mission Accomplished aircraft carrier speech.

Nah, that was a silly moment and I really had the impression at the time that it was going to be downhill for him from there. He still got re-elected and all that, but my fury had peaked back during the March to War when it seemed like I was the only person in the country who opposed invading Iraq.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:16 PM
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The nicknames, I think. I still feel a revulsion at anyone so consistently arrogant, bullying, and cruel as to force nicknames on those essentially powerless to protest. Obviously unforgiveable, and I have yet to ever hear of anyone else in a power position, including Hitler & Stalin, who felt they could get away with it. Someone who will do that is definitely liable to personally torture a victim, again, something I doublt Hitler would find as easy as Bush.

Bush wasn't worse than Hitler only because circumstances didn't permit it.

So the campaign of 2000 is when I started hating Bush.

I started hating all those who voted for Bush, and those who covered for Bush or enabled excused Bush, including especially those who focused on that horribly mistaken idealist Cheney, after abu Ghraib.

The distinction is important. Cheney would torture for reasons. Bush just got off on it. The signs were there from the beginning, and quite obvious.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:17 PM
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Yeah, I have hated Bush since the McCain "black baby" thing in early 2000, but the peak of my throwing-things-and-cursing rage may have been Abu Ghraib.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:19 PM
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10: Ugh. Yes.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:21 PM
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1 is good. So is 8. 10: "Heckuva job, Brownie" is particularly biting. I'm inclined to go with 1 in the end. The swagger, the machismo, the smugness, all the elements I despise about people like him.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:24 PM
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13: See I did not hate him quite so much during Abu Ghraib because I thought he was going to lose in a few months.

Nah, that was a silly moment
My rage was twofold, seeing him reduce the Presidency to such farce, followed by the realization that such militaristic farces by political leaders have been the face of so much evil throughout history.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:25 PM
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Tangentially, the moment in which I felt the most contempt (as opposed to hatred) for Dubya was the Angela Merkel backrub incident. What a goddamn douchebag.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:26 PM
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I will say that my Mission Accomplished rage was simultaneously stoked and rechanneled to ridicule by watching the likes of Sean Hannity and Chris Matthews pop boners over the whole thing.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:29 PM
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I think the CHIP one got to me somehow because of the puppy-dogs-and-buttercups-ness of providing healthcare to low income children. It was like he was vetoing wiping children's tears away. And then, to claimthat the reason was because he was extra-concerned about the children's tears. "I'm so extra, extra concerned about the tears, that I don't want to risk helping just some of the children."


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:30 PM
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The nicknames were so important to me, a shock & revelation.

AFAIK, Hitler flattered his subordinates and was kind to those a level down from that. Hitler wouldn't call Goehring "fatty" at every meeting, Adolf would understand that the constant humiliation would not only be detrimental to Goehring's performance, but that the accumulated resentment might eventually cost Hitler his life. Bush understood that many options available to the Nazi High Command weren't available to his cabinet. And Bush didn't really care about performance, even for achieving his misbegotten goals, the important thing was his ego.

Idi Amin wasn't this bad. I have difficulty thinking of anyone this bad. Ivan the Terrible wasn't this bad.

Bush is even more astonishing that we yet realize.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:31 PM
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Either the Angela Merkel moment or when he went on Iraqi TV and told them repeatedly that they "must understand" that America does not torture, right after every newspaper in the world had printed photos demonstrating that America does indeed torture.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:32 PM
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The SCHIP thing got to me because our local Representative was one of the lead defenders of the veto, and I thought SURELY THIS WILL GET HIM VOTED OUT OF OFFICE. But alas, the CA Democratic party in its wisdom has long decided that this is an unwinnable seat and doesn't bother to put much in the way of resources behind it. Which they may be right and all, but so. irritating.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:33 PM
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Decisive Turn Toward Loathing (when I realized he was something orders of magnitude worse than I'd first understood): The first occasion on which he was caught flatly lying about what IAEA reports had to say about Iraq, and his office had to back down when the IAEA publicly rebuked them. There was a dawning awareness that for all their vaunted "message discipline" his outfit didn't care about its image as a competent government.

Most Grotesquely Loathesome Moment: In the wake of 9/11, when he first started using the attack as (literally) a punchline at fundraisers. After that, nothing surprised me, including his playful mugging just before he announced his invasion.

Most Surreally Loathsome Moment: The "Mission Accomplished" photo-up stunt, where I was struck forcefully by the impression that he looked like an adolescent playing dress-up.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:38 PM
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See I did not hate him quite so much during Abu Ghraib because I thought he was going to lose in a few months.

I felt sure that Abu Ghraib was an irrecoverable-from blow.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:41 PM
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hm, the Katrina where he goes and set up a photo op to hand out water, then shutting it down as soon as they finished the photo op sure is close to the top


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:41 PM
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The disrespect and contempt openly showed toward Paul O'Neill, wildly successful CEO of fucking ALCOA, was astonishing. Couldn't O'Neill possibly, treated with flattery, have been useful to Bush?

Bush didn't care.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:44 PM
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Bob, by your standards i know lots of people as bad a bush. Being a dick to people around you is really common. go to a club and watch people talk to the bartender sometime.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:44 PM
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"This is an impressive crowd. The haves, and the have-mores. Some call you the elite. I call you my base."


Posted by: Cryptec Nid | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:47 PM
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Secondary hatred moments:

Everything everyone else has mentioned.

All through the 2004 debates, probably peaking at "You want some wood?"

The "humorous" search for the WMDs.

Seeing him speak at the Repub Convention in New York knowing the despicable political calculus that went into deciding to hold the convention there.

When I -- when I said those words four years ago, none of us could have envisioned what these years would bring. In the heart of this great city, we saw tragedy arrive on a quiet morning. We saw the bravery of rescuers grow with danger. We learned of passengers on a doomed plane who died with a courage that frightened their killers.

When I learned that he blew off the daily briefer in August 2001 by mocking him for "covering his ass".


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:51 PM
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The turn towards loathing: when the DMN published a bootlicking profile about Poppy's boy outreach to evangelicals.

Hrmmm. All the really profound bits of Bush hatred have always come listening to some neo-con fawn over the stupid ghit's decisiveness or similar crap. Being reminded by direct encounter via the TV that the tool in question is a completely clueless fuck sorta damps down the feeling of pure utter loathing.

max
['Which is then replaced by near-hopeless despair.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:52 PM
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31

I think the moment I really knew I hated Bush personally was when he started talking about how the Afghanistan war (aerial bombardment and proxy fighting) was going to be really awesome for the poor oppressed women of Afghanistan.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:53 PM
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Katrina. I was so angry that I wanted to chew and then spit nails. But didn't, because I didn't have healthcare! Good times.


Posted by: Rooster | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 4:54 PM
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28: Isn't that from the Al Smith dinner? He gets a bye there.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:00 PM
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It's amazing how much this thread is elevating my blood pressure. I'm viscerally agitated right now, and was in a good mood only a few minutes ago.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:00 PM
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I thought Bush was unbearable from early 2000 on, as soon as it became obvious that he was a moron.

I admit to thinking in 2000-2001 that competent, old-school advisors (like Cheney and Rumsfeld!) had a reasonable chance of reigning in the boy-prince and creating a well-run, if right wing, administration along the lines of GHWB's. Jesus Christ did I ever bet wrong!

I think sometime during 2002 I gave up completely on the belief/hope that there was some core of rationality somewhere in the White House, and I settled into total loathing of everyone and everything involved with the Bush Administration, but I can't place the exact date or event. Definitely before the start of the war, though.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:02 PM
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36

Yeah, I'm gonna go with JM's 31.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:03 PM
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37

I am fairly sure that as long as I am looking at the man speaking, I hate him the most. It doesn't really matter what he's doing or what he's saying at the time.

I suspect that I arrived at this point somewhere around the aftermath of 9/11.


Posted by: DL | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:06 PM
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38

I think what 34 was trying to say is that I hate Bush the most right this very minute. And every time I think about the last eight years, I hate him even more. And when I said "it's amazing", I meant I'm bemused by that fact. I wonder when the feelings will start to fade.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:07 PM
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27:People in public power positions are usually constrained and calculating enough to fake noblesse oblige, even if they don't feel it.

Bush's calculations can be understood with the anecdote about him demanding his old school friends, in private, call him "Mr President."

34:Brock, if you did vote for Bush, I believe you knowingly voted for someone worse than Idi Amin. I cannot remember a single act of kindness, generosity, or magnanimity attributed to Bush since birth. There was never any question about Bush's monstrousness.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:10 PM
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The "humorous" search for the WMDs.

For me, this. "Ha ha ha! I killed tens of thousands of people and destroyed a country for no good reason at all! Ha ha ha!"

If I could have made him burst into flames at that moment, I sure would have.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:13 PM
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I remember hoping at some point that I thought maybe he really meant the compassionate conservatism thing and wouldn't be *too* evil. And that shortly after that I got to the point where I couldn't stand listening to his voice on the radio, ever. But not the catalyst for the transition.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:17 PM
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42

I've been at 11 the whole time. I couldn't get matter without seriously losing it.

On 9/12 I realized that we were in for an indefinite number of America's most horrible years. Everything during the next seven years confirmed that. I feared that it would be far more than seven.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:30 PM
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Sometime in the buildup to the Iraq war, I just turned him off. I've avoided radio and TV news for the past five years for fear of having to watch his smug ratty little face (the net made it possible to actually be better informed using this strategy).

But I don't think I ever quite hated *him*. He was such an obvious fuckup and mediocrity and asshole, he was just following out the destiny encoded in his nature and background. The horrible, insidious thing was that knowing the country was behind this guy. That made you hate *America*. Which is much worse.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:40 PM
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On 9/12 I realized that we were in for an indefinite number of America's most horrible years.

After 9/11 I had a period of feeling togetherness, patriotism, and a belief we might turn this event in a positive direction somehow. Then I gradually realized that my left friends had been correct about U.S. imperialism all along.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:42 PM
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"madder"


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:44 PM
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I think the "mad at Bush" thing presumes there are still some expectations to be disappointed. I mean, after a certain point I was consistently relieved that Bush hadn't actually started bombing Iran yet.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:47 PM
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On 9/11 I knew immediately that we were probably about to do some really stupid violent shit. The month-long lull before we actually started to do so sort of fooled me into half-hearted "maybe it won't be so bad"-ism. It's been downhill since.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:48 PM
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I was eating lunch at a patio type cafe on the shore of Lake Titicaca. There were a bunch of guys working on the building with the radio blasting "Estadios Unidos" this, "tormento" that, etc... Awkward. I remember thinking, after hearing the word, "violaciones", "Isn't torture a violation in and of itself?" Good times.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 5:49 PM
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When he appointed a man who had mocked me and my tiny agency department in a public meeting to be Assistant Secretary at Interior, I knew it was going to be bad.

I probably hated him before I knew that he mocked (?) Karla's plea for clemency and her life as a governor of Texas.

But there was never a moment, ever ever, where I could stand listening to him.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:00 PM
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The "humorous" search for the WMDs.

Agreed. This.

44: Then I gradually realized that my left friends had been correct about U.S. imperialism all along.

That's right, you're a fairly recent convert, aren't you? Bummer, isn't it?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:04 PM
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37: I am fairly sure that as long as I am looking at the man speaking, I hate him the most. It doesn't really matter what he's doing or what he's saying at the time.

Same here, realized that is why the debates make my list even though he did not debase himself any more than usual. Just that by then I never listened to him for more than a minute, but I felt compelled to watch all of the debates.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:08 PM
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Actually, when Bush kicked off his 2000 South Carolina campaign at Bob Jones University, I knew then and there he was going to engender burning hatred in me for the rest of his career. That proved to be entirely on the money.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:09 PM
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I still don't know why he didn't bomb Iran. We didn't have ground troops to do more than that, but that's not the kind of thing he would care about. I've dreaded war with Iran since about March 2006, and I won't quit worrying until January 21.

I suspect that there will be some booby traps planted in the American military for Obama when Bush leaves. People weren't kidding when they said that Obama would face a military test.

I still believe that Bush I's pointless troop landing in Somalia was intended to ratfuck Clinton, and maybe the Waco raid too.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:13 PM
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When I heard he had beaten Ann Richards. A tiny amount of hate crept into my heart.
But after the last eight years I think it's important to remember his good qualities too: can you imagine how much damage he could have done had he been remotely competent, and had been able to maintain his popularity?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:16 PM
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Usually people who are hated reflexively by huge percentages of Americans engender sympathy in me, at least a little bit. But I have never felt any pity or sympathy for Bush at his low points, or his most embarrrassing moments, or the times when he was trying but failing to negotiate with smarter people. Nothing but hatred. I really could not imagine someone worse for the job of president. Anyone less qualified would have not been allowed to get to that point by the powers that be in the Republican Party.

Now that I say that, there were two points in his life when I felt not hatred, but some admiration. First was when he took part of the time in a speech after Sept. 11 to tell people not to blame Muslims en masse. Second was when that giant Hawaiian marine park thing was created, not that I really understand what that is, but it actually did not seem to be a giveaway to any industry or crony. I still don't know how that latter thing happened.


Posted by: Cryptec Nid | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:17 PM
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Mocking Gore for using "fuzzy math" to point out that his tax cuts would increase the deficit.


Posted by: Gabriel | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:17 PM
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But Gabriel, that whole debate was just a snorefest between two interchangeable candidates. Fuzzy math! Lockbox! Fuzzy math! Lockbox! Fuzzy math! Lockbox! Fuzzy math! Lockbox! Fuzzy math! Lockbox! Fuzzy math! Lockbox! Sheesh, where are the Muskies d'antan.


Posted by: Chris Matthews | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:19 PM
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Hating Bush. I dunno. I kinda hated his dad worse. But that was when I had better politics. I guess a lot of GWB stuff is probably more hateworthy if you don't connect it to all of its ideological forebearers. Batista, Somoza, Peron, Nixon, Pinochet, Duvalier, Fujimori, -- it's like there's an evil spirit that wanders around the Americas, stopping every once in awhile to fuck things up in one country or another. It's not really "surprising" that the Cheney mob could get together and bumrush the country. It's not even surprising that so many people were cool with that. It is a little surprising that instinctive proletarian anger is welling up now. When I came in to work this morning a woman from another department -- an ordinary woman who you'd pass on the street every day and think "there's a stolid, white, lower-middle class suburbanite" (and you'd be right) -- was holding court in the breakroom, regaling a rapt audience of four or five of our coworkers with tales of the perfidy of the Big 3 chairmen from their congressional testimony. And she was really, really angry. I tell you, give the average American a class war narrative that makes visceral sense to them -- an executive flying in a private Learjet to ask for billions of tax dollars -- and watch out! We'll see, I suppose, I've been fooled before.


Posted by: minneapolitan | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:20 PM
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I've dreaded war with Iran since about March 2006, and I won't quit worrying until January 21.I suspect that there will be some booby traps planted in the American military for Obama when Bush leaves.

Like maybe for example a (not-so) secret ongoing proxy war with Iranian dissident groups? For the ultimate ratfuck, let's postulate a "Bay of Hormuz" operation in the works for, say, March 2009.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:22 PM
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I still believe that Bush I's pointless troop landing in Somalia was intended to ratfuck Clinton, and maybe the Waco raid too.

Ruby Ridge was Bush, Waco was Clinton.


Posted by: Cryptec Nid | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:23 PM
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The important energy in the opposition to a GM bailout comes from anti-labor, anti-union feeling. It's much like the attempt to blame the entire financial crisis on home loans to minorities. The private jet part is just PR. (Presumably most of the finance bailout people also had private jets.)


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:24 PM
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Yes, but the first Waco raid happened five weeks after the inauguration, before Clinton and Reno had their feet on the ground., and before Reno had even been confirmed. I'm convinced that the plans were made under Bush, and that whoever made the plans was happy to shank Clinton.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:28 PM
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Wiki: Janet Reno (born July 21, 1938) was the Attorney General of the United States (1993-2001).[1] She was nominated by President Bill Clinton on February 11, 1993, and confirmed on March 11.

The Waco Siege[11] (also known as the Waco Massacre[12] ) took place on February 28, 1993 when the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF)

So she had been in office, de facto only, for 17 days.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:41 PM
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What a goddamn douchebag.

Someone should submit the Bush/Merkel pic to hot chicks with douchebags.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:42 PM
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That's right, you're a fairly recent convert, aren't you?

I reached complete cynicism circa 2002. It's not like I couldn't tell stuff like Vietnam was wrong, but I didn't see the systemic connections too well.

Bummer, isn't it?

yes.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:44 PM
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I stand corrected.

I thought it was already enough of a departure from conventional wisdom for me to be aware that Ruby Ridge could not be blamed entirely on Clinton!


Posted by: Cryptec Nid | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:45 PM
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55: I really could not imagine someone worse for the job of president.

Are you sure?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:52 PM
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I still don't know why he didn't bomb Iran.

Last December, when the National Intelligence Estimate came out saying that Iran had stopped developing nukes, I was very optimistic that the game was up.

Bush (or perhaps Cheney) accomplished what he did by bullying the bureaucracy. Had the CIA, the other intelligence agencies and folks like Colin Powell not knuckled under, we never would have invaded Iraq. Once that NIE came out, it was clear that the intelligence bureaucracy had recovered a modicum of professionalism - or, from Bush's point of view, had gone rogue.

That said, I'm certainly in complete agreement with this sentiment:

I've dreaded war with Iran since about March 2006, and I won't quit worrying until January 21.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:57 PM
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55: I really could not imagine someone worse for the job of president.

67: Are you sure?


He doesn't do trolley-car problems, Parsi.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:58 PM
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67: Someone who would be approved by the Republican Party power brokers, anyway.

Cheney? Not worse.
Palin? Would not be approved.


Posted by: Cryptec Nid | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 6:59 PM
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I'm with Ari in 10, because Katrina was the biggest fuck up that can be pinned most directly on Bush. Abu Ghraib was more of an outrage, but my fury was partially directed toward sociopaths like Charles Granger. Katrina was pure Bush.

That said, I am happy to say that my anger in general has abated for a while. I don't think about Bush much at all. It is not fun to be angry.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:06 PM
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I gotta go with oudemia in 7. I haven't hated Bush any more than I did the day after that election.

Though, as with Emerson's 42, I haven't hated Bush any less since then, either.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:17 PM
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Palin? Would not be approved.

I have to believe this. It appears they're beginning to battle it out even now; there's a lot of time for things -- not just Republican party internecine battles, but world events -- to fall out in the next few years.

So, nah, I'm not worried.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:20 PM
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Returning to the question of why we haven't bombed Iran, I predicted the result in this thread.

I provide this link not merely for purposes of self-congratulation, but to commemorate the one moment in the last eight years that I was:

1. optimistic
and
2. correct.

(Correct so far, I mean. January 20 can't get here quickly enough for me.)


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:30 PM
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74: That's the only explanation I can think of. I didn't predict it, though.

Hopefully the inside story will come out before I croak.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:36 PM
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I still don't know why he didn't bomb Iran.

It will be by proxy, via Israel. Best times would be dark of the moon, perhaps November 26,27,28 or December 26,27,28. The resulting spike in oil prices due to Iran closing the Straight of Hormuz and possibly striking Saudi oil facilities will drive the global economy into Mad Max level depression. Backlash against Obama for failing to fix the problem fast enough will sweep Palin/Gingrich into power in 2012.

The reason oil prices were so high over the summer was anxiety over the possible blowback from a strike against Iran, logical given the way Bush was talking. Perhaps the fall reflects accurate information about the reduced likelihood of that happening. Perhaps it just reflects the fact that the administration has stopped talking about it since Bush visited Israel with "good news" that some speculate was the go-ahead for an Israeli strike.

Most likely everything will be fine, though.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:45 PM
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I keep saying "Buch!" in my head. It's fun!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:50 PM
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since Bush visited Israel with "good news" that some speculate was the go-ahead for an Israeli strike

What? I seem to have missed this.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:54 PM
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Katrina made me so angry that I actually called the White House (something I had never done before, and have yet to do since) to rant and rave at some switchboard operator at the other end, who, I'm fairly certain, was not empowered to act in a decision-making capacity.

But my hatred of Bush dates from the time (well, I don't have a date, actually, but it was years ago, I guess) when I read of how he mocked Karla Faye Tucker's plea for clemency. Ugh.

I no longer hate him, though. Nowadays I merely despise him.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 7:59 PM
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78 - He said some coy things about having good news when he visited in Jan of this year. Some of the wingnut blogs creamed their pants on the assumption it was a go ahead for an attack on Iran. I suspect it wasn't but the paranoid who timeshares my consciousness thinks that it was basically a go ahead for after the US election, since the oil price spike would really hurt McCain's prospects.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:07 PM
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Mary Catherine hates all Americans, Englishmen, and Protestants, and Bush is all three. As am I.

On the positive side, her husband was a big player in Boumediene v. Bush, which was won today.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:11 PM
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Franken-Coleman is down to 129 votes. If trends continue the difference could be less than 100 votes.

Things look fairly good for Franken. The wingnuts are shrieking.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:13 PM
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Batista, Somoza, Peron, Nixon, Pinochet, Duvalier, Fujimori, -- it's like there's an evil spirit that wanders around the Americas

I like this, not least because it doesn't locate the United States upstream from every single perfidy. It reminds me of Eduardo Galeano. It may have been in his writing that I saw a Latin American object to the portrayal of the CIA as uniquely responsible for fucking up the hemisphere: "Our bastards are just as bad as their bastards."

That's not letting anybody off the hook, of course.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:20 PM
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I don't know- he was down 215 before recount, after recounting 46% of votes he gained 86 votes, or 40% of what he needs. Not quite catching Coleman at that pace, could be within ~20 votes. Of course, Franken's people say Coleman's are making unfair challenges that will be overturned at the next level of review, so he might make up more then.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:26 PM
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If Franken loses by one vote, any Minnesotan Democrats who were too lazy to vote this year will feel very guilty. Emerson?

Just to depress people -- Obama's intelligence transition team


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:29 PM
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The upcoming counties are more favorable than the counted counties, and there are the challenged votes and rejected writeins to consider.

700 or so votes out of 2.5+ million (the original report) is incredibly close, and it's quite possible that the final count will be considerably closer, one way or another. Right now it's at 129, so it would have to move 500+ votes one way or 800+ the other way in order to make the margin more decisive than it was.

Someone here pointed out that most coin-flipping simulations are less close than this.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:32 PM
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Coleman's team hasn't quit talking about the "lost" 32 votes even though that story has been debunked for days. Even Republican Governor Pawlenty agrees that there's no there there. Coleman seems to be committed to a Rovian scorched-earth policy directed at the national media. It makes me wonder whether he knows he's lost.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:36 PM
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Mary Catherine hates all Americans, Englishmen, and Protestants, and Bush is all three. As am I.

Oh yes, you would bear an uncanny resemblance to Bush, John, if only you would perfect your effortlessly, not to say cluelessly, entitled Ivy League fratboy sneer. Which I think you really do need to work on, if you don't mind my saying so, if you ever hope to pass as the genuine article.

But you have grossly distorted and misrepresented my biases and prejudices, of course. I like English Anglicans, for example. Just so long as they're English. And Anglican.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:38 PM
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Someone here pointed out that most coin-flipping simulations are less close than this.

Most? I suspect you'd have to run thousands of coin-flipping scenarios until you came up with one this close. Somebody should figure that out.

I'm lazy, so I'm not going to work this out, but I think elections should be closer than coin flipping scenarios -- the coins aren't trying to win, Heads doesn't adjust policy positions to try to eat into Tails support.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:40 PM
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MC is a "wet" Fenian. There's Brits, and then there are High Church Anglicans who are really perfectly nice people.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:41 PM
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Oh, Mary Catherine, Parsy and I figured out the other day that I went to college with your husband. Although I don't remember him, and I'm sure the same is true the other way. I knew some of the guys he hung out with, though, I won't say their names here for anonymity reasons. Email linked above if you're curious.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:42 PM
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Minnesota's distributed intelligence has defeated chance. We're precisely divided between supporters of creepy, evasive, opportunistic, lying Republicans and admirers of sort-of-OK moderately-liberal comedians.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:45 PM
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I'm not really a hater.

Couldn't think less of the guy, of course. And each day brings a new reason to think even less. Today it's his inability to hear the bell toll from 3d and Constitution. Or to give a shit, if he does hear it (or if one of the little men in his employ have come to tell him about it). He only employs little people.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:49 PM
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Mr. MC introduced himself to me not long ago. I've been happy to celebrate his news all day.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:52 PM
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||

I'm watching the women's slalom from Lappland -- and just learned that the German team trains in Dubai. It's a strange world.

|>


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 8:54 PM
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The blogger "The Talking Dog" has also done Guantanamo work. I visited him last time I was in NYC.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:01 PM
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92: Un coup de dés jamais n'abolira le hasard.


Posted by: Mallarmé | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:06 PM
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If Coleman and Franken are separated by less than 1 vote, can they both take office, and just have one of them take Ted Stevens's place?

Honestly, how liberal is a Democrat from Alaska really going to be? We're better off in the long run if they have only one senator.


Posted by: Cryptec Nid | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:11 PM
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Emerson, it's a bit unsettling how you just channelled my paternal grandfather in 90. Not that I'd know anything about the Fenians, of course. Don't know nothing about O'Neil; only related, if at all, by marriage; and don't know a thing at all, really.

PGD: really? Six (or maybe four, or even three?) degrees of separation. I bet he does remember you, though, he has a mind for times and dates and places.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:14 PM
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From upthread: radio blasting "Estadios Unidos" this, "tormento" that, etc... Awkward. I remember thinking, after hearing the word, "violaciones", "Isn't torture a violation in and of itself?"

I suspect they may have meant violación as "rape", not that it makes it any better, mind you.

I keep saying "Buch!" in my head. It's fun!

Some Chileans say his name as "Bootch", which, by way of a segue: I loathed him most in the drum-up to the Iraq war. I was living abroad and had to explain to every single person I met that, yeah, there were some of us that opposed this whole thing, and sorry, and, no, really, seriously, we're just as upset about it as you are. It was really frustrating.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:25 PM
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96 -- I think the Talking Dog has done an invaluable service in preserving a small piece of the history of this episode. He's well represented in this summary.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:39 PM
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Something that cranked up my overall level of hatred (or whatever) of Bush was seeing clips of him from his father's 1988 campaign that were part of the Lee Atwater bio. Captures him at his smirking frat boy worst.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:45 PM
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I think the "mad at Bush" thing presumes there are still some expectations to be disappointed.

That's a weird definition of "mad."


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:49 PM
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100+OT: I had a meeting with two vendor reps today, one of whom was named Kobi (I think he was an Israeli). Kobi was the technical guy so the salesy dude was continually "Kobi what about this?" or "How does that work, Kobi?". I found it stupidly distracting. Thanks, Unfogged.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 9:53 PM
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From the Minnesota recount:

"Oh for cripes' sake. We've lived here for five years and voted in every election. We've never had any problems before. This is crazy. Honest to Pete, there's no wonder they're having problems counting the ballots."


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 10:02 PM
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Those sample challenged ballots are enough to make one lose one's mind. How does anyone vote that poorly? Oh, I'll just make a checkmark over here and a squiggle over there, and maybe I'll circle the edge of the page instead of filling in any bubbles, and then write in "Lizard People" for the hell of it.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 10:20 PM
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The votes for Lizard People were not "for the hell of it."


Posted by: I wish I knew a Sleestak's name. | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 10:25 PM
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Those sample challenged ballots are enough to make one lose one's mind. How does anyone vote that poorly?

Actually, I thought most of them were pretty clear-cut.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 10:27 PM
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Actually, I rather like Lizard People.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 10:29 PM
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108: Clear-cut in intent, yes, but why not just fill in the bubble next to the name, huh? Is it so hard?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 10:41 PM
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110: This is a country where the people who make reflective windshield sun screens feel it necessary to put a warning label instructing people not to drive with them in place.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 11:02 PM
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Most? I suspect you'd have to run thousands of coin-flipping scenarios until you came up with one this close. Somebody should figure that out.

So if we go with the pre-recount results, we have N_c = 1,211,590 votes for Coleman and N_f = 1,211,375 votes for Franken. That's N = 2,422,965 votes.

The probably of getting at least x heads with an unbiased coin and N flips is F(x; N,0.5), where F(*) is the cumulative distribution function of a binomial distribution. So unless I'm mistaken, we want 1 - (F(N_c; N,0.5) - F(N_f; N,0.5)). This is equal to 0.8901. In other words, you'd expect that 89% of coin flipping experiments would have margins larger than the one observed in the initial vote count.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 11:16 PM
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111: that's totally a scam, though. Have you ever driven with one in place? Cool and comfortable! They're just trying to get you to burn through more gas running the AC.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 11:16 PM
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112: I know all that stuff! I was just smart enough to wait for someone else to show off by doing the work. It's a higher form of intelligence.

Although my claim that it would take "thousands", as opposed to, say, ninety, coin flipping experiments to come up with that margin or less certainly shows my instincts were off.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 11:30 PM
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Wait, Otto, what's with the fakey 0.5 parameter? You didn't do the factorials? Cheater.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-20-08 11:44 PM
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115: My Turing Machine does my factorials for me.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:01 AM
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We can't believe your normal approximations! PGD: there's still time for you to do the work!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:05 AM
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Now that Mukasey isn't dead I can admit that my first thought on hearing about him was, "Good Lord, what can Bush et al get away with now?"


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:13 AM
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Worse than Bsuh, the people who voted for him, those I hate. Eight years of evil and incompetence and you still got almost half the country lining up for another shot with McCain.

Dutch voters ain't much better, willing to vote for Harry Potter no matter how much he fucks things up.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:48 AM
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You can't hate people for being stupid, Martin.

I mean, you can, but they won't get it.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 1:01 AM
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Libby commutation. I'm still furious about it, and none too happy that he suffered no penalty for it.


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 1:07 AM
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I found Bush pretty repugnant from the first time I saw him. The whole 'regular guy you'd want to have a beer with' schtick was so obviously false [he radiates 'epic prick' on a scale that I can barely remember being exceeded by any public figure ever] that even his first election seemed to reflect pretty badly on those who voted for him.

However, my real hatred is reserved for Blair. It's hard to overstate just how much I hate him.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 1:48 AM
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122.1 gets it right. 122.2, in its concern for lesser asholes from the territories, is touching.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 1:51 AM
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I don't think Blair is a lesser asshole.

Lesser in the sense of less important politically/globally, yes.

But not less of an asshole. Unlike Bush, Blair doesn't have the excuses of being either i) American or ii) really fucking stupid.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 1:56 AM
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124: but what has Bush achieved with his assolishness? If Bush hadn't been an asshole -- my god. If Tony hadn't been an asshole, well, Bush would have been more of an asshole.

The last vestiges of American exceptionalism; at this last, unfortunate margin, we reserved the right to be the dickhead.

Actually, back up.

Being American is an excuse?

I'm not sure I should write this off.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 2:02 AM
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Being American is an excuse?

I just mean that there's a combination of factors that make some of the post-9/11 US behaviour excusable in a way that Blair's was not.

i) genuine pain/thirst for revenge after a huge terrorist attack
ii) the whole exceptionalist thing -- which I've argued at length here before is really pernicious but which informs politicians of all stripes and which renders certain types of behaviour explicable even if they aren't actually exculpated.
iii) a very different political/media climate -- a US president, even a strong and well-intentioned one, would have struggled after 9/11, I think, to articulate a multilateralist and primarily non-military response.

I can go on, but I just mean that Blair should have known better and had options that any US President (even one not a total asshole like Bush) would not and could not have had.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 3:26 AM
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Obviously unforgiveable, and I have yet to ever hear of anyone else in a power position, including Hitler & Stalin, who felt they could get away with

I think Stalin did do this (of course "Stalin" was itself a nickname). He certainly humiliated subordinates for fun; I seem to remember that he occasionally played the spoons on Khruschev's head.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 3:39 AM
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re: 127

Yeah, there's a fair bit of that in 'Young Stalin', iirc.* There's speculation in Young Stalin that he took his nickname from one of his lovers.

* of course, in that, he comes across as quite exceptional in other ways -- brave, smart, resourceful, ruthless, committed, charming -- which could not be said about Bush.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 3:46 AM
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of course "Stalin" was itself a nickname

As were Lenin (Ulyanov), Trotsky (Bronstein), Zinoviev (Radamyslsky), Kamenev (Rosenfelt), Molotov (Scriabin), etc. But they were nicknames they chose themselves, not that they had wished on them by the big wahoonie. Anyway, "Stalin did it first" is hardly exculpatory in my book.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 3:52 AM
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Someone who will do that is definitely liable to personally torture a victim, again, something I doubt Hitler would find as easy as Bush.

Bob is giving Hitler too much credit. I don't know if Hitler ever personally tortured anyone, but he is said to have viewed with sadistic relish the film footage of the executions (by slow strangulation with piano wire) of the conspirators in the July 20 plot to assassinate him.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 5:46 AM
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121: Libby commutation. I'm still furious about it, and none too happy that he suffered no penalty for it.

Yes, how could I have forgotten that one. And we almost certainly have Act II "The Pardon" coming in January to spike my hatred function.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 6:53 AM
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124: Blair at least managed to achieve some positive things in domestic policy; as noted above, with Bush it's the Hawaiian marine park and that's the lot. But that's orthogonal to his holishness.

I seem to remember that he occasionally played the spoons on Khruschev's head

I know about him forcing Khrushchev to dance a Cossack dance for him ("danced like a cow on ice", one eyewitness remembered) but playing the spoons on his head? That's brutal. Also very funny.

I think what 34 was trying to say is that I hate Bush the most right this very minute.

Like Peter Gibbons. "Every day of my life is worse than the day before. So whatever day you see me on, that's the worst day of my life."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 7:02 AM
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re: 132

I get pretty cynical even about his domestic achievements. There were some good things done in the first term but I'm not sure how many of them were Blairite and how many were existing manifesto commitments he inherited from Smith. I can't really think of anything much post-2000 or so. Certainly I'd already made the choice not to vote for him again quite a while before the 2001 election as I'd already become really quite angry with some of his policy choices.

He's clearly not an idiot, and I think some of the stuff he has done was well-intentioned, but it's heavily outweighed by the rest for me.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 7:09 AM
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131: The coming pardons will be the death of me. Perhaps we should start a pool?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:03 AM
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Wow, can't believe no one has mentioned "Lucky me, I hit the trifecta."

That was soon enough after 9/11 that - even though I never, for even a moment, had given him any credit for being non-suck around 9/11 - it hurt emotionally. What kind of monster looks at 9/11 and thinks, "lucky me"?

That was also a powerful moment of realization that the press would protect him no matter what.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:04 AM
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a US president, even a strong and well-intentioned one, would have struggled after 9/11, I think, to articulate a multilateralist and primarily non-military response.

I go back and forth about this. I think any president I can realistically imagine would have bombed Afghanistan. But would that have led to a ground war there? Not at all sure. Would it have led to everything else, starting with Iraq? Quite possibly (probably?) not.

I was grateful that Bush spoke up against hate crimes against Muslims after 9/11. It doesn't make up for everything else, but it inspired in me a small crumb of appreciation.

I tend to feel grief, shame, sadness and pity more than anger towards him. I'm a lot angrier at people I perceive to have more intentionality for what they did.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:04 AM
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This was a full year after the invasion. I guess it would have received more press if, uh, the journalists hadn't laughed it up so much.

At a black-tie dinner for journalists, Mr Bush narrated a slide show poking fun at himself and other members of his administration. One pictured Mr Bush looking under a piece of furniture in the Oval Office, at which the president remarked: "Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be here somewhere."After another one, showing him scouring the corner of a room, Mr Bush said: "No, no weapons over there," he said.And as a third picture, this time showing him leaning over, appeared on the screen the president was heard to say: "Maybe under here?"

Posted by: asl | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:14 AM
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Oh yeah, 121 got under my skin, too.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:15 AM
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I hated him most when he was addressing the nation telling us that his stupid war had begun.

Indeed. My best and longest friend was there. Every shot on the TV or clip on the radio of bombs exploding rattled me through and through. She's fine, she assured me before she left that, really, honestly, her particular post was not one that would be putting her at risk. Even so, every shot and clip got to me and hate that little worm a little more.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:23 AM
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The thing about Blair is that so much of the worst domestic stuff - the whole ID cards/asylum/surveillance/urban space privatisation complex, the shameless bullshit in general, the dodgy party donations, abandoning his European policy, the weird obsession with pulling public services apart and putting them back together - comes after he signed on with the neocons in the spring-early summer of 2002. In a sense, the last good thing the government did was seize Railtrack in the spring of 2002. He drank the koolaid and there was no going back.

Bush? I've despised him as long as I've known of his existence. I'm sure the intensity must have varied though.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:24 AM
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by slow strangulation with piano wire

How does this work? I learned, with great surprise, in college that piano wire is really fucking stiff, and uncuttable without good quality tools.

he is said to have viewed with sadistic relish the film footage of the executions ... of the conspirators in the July 20 plot to assassinate him.

I'd have to guess that I would not mind watching the killings of those who tried to kill Hitler. Remember, they weren't tragic heroes to him.

Unless, by sadistic, you mean, "while masturbating." That would not be me.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:24 AM
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141.1: Well, it does bend pretty well...


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:25 AM
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Unless, by sadistic, you mean, "while masturbating."

I'm going to mentally define all instances of "sadistic" in this way. I think it will make my life a lot happier and more interesting.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:27 AM
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Oh, I have a candidate; the 7th of July, 2005, about 10am.

I remember vividly the Abu Dhabi TV footage of the first night of heavy air raids on Baghdad, two days into the war. Especially that the street lights were on and the traffic lights were changing; it was as if the people were gone and the machines had taken over. I said to my partner, "These are the images that will inspire the next terrorists." (Damn, I really should have started the blog earlier, no?)


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:29 AM
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I have trouble knowing what I think of Blair, because I don't understand why he went all neo-con. For people in the Bush administration, it makes perfect sense -- blowing up everything in sight was a source of immense domestic political advantage, and a chance to hand out crony-capitalism financial goodies. Any belief that the Iraq war was actually going to be a good thing from a humanitarian/geopolitical point of view was so strongly supported by the corrupt motivations that it didn't have to make any sense in itself.

For Blair, I don't see what the similar corrupt motivations were. This may just be my not understanding UK politics, but going to war isn't the same kind of political winner there that it is here, I don't think. Which leaves me thinking that he actually believed the war was a good thing from a humanitarian/geopolitical point of view, and for a generally recognized as intelligent and well-informed world leader, I find that so incomprehensible that I can't really judge him.

Bush, I can't empathize with enough to have strong feelings about. I've got hostile feelings toward the Bush Administration, but I can't personally care about an individual I don't get at all. Colin Powell I despise, because he's a real enough person to me that I can blame him for things. Bush, I just can't make real. If I knew him, I'd probably feel differently.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:42 AM
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No president has done more for human rights than I have. -George W. Bush


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:52 AM
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It's especially weird because he had a very specific example of not doing what the Americans wanted; Harold Wilson carefully avoided getting us involved in Vietnam, despite being put under enormous pressure by LBJ and Nixon. And y'know what? Nothing happened. None of the terrible costs of standing up to them actually existed. Similarly, Thatcher disagreed with Reagan on various lesser issues and made absolutely no pretence of keeping it quiet.

Mind you, it's not like Wilson got any thanks over that. One thing that Blair certainly fell prey to was a horror of being thought a DFH.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 8:54 AM
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Of all the hatred-inspiring moments of Bush, none beats "Lemme put it this way: they are no longer a problem for the United States of America." I think he said this with cotton balls in his mouth so he could sound even more like _The Godfather_.

That was in the last State of the Union I watched, either 2002 or 2003. He also said, in that speech or one around that time, that extra-judicial assassination represented "the true meaning of American justice."

I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just.


Posted by: rm | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 9:08 AM
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God, the "war has begun" speech. Do you remember him saying that he'd like to address the Iraqi people for a moment, and then telling them not to set the oil fields on fire, because they'd be punishing the wrong people? Or something like that.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 9:14 AM
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||

Does anyone know how one would find out how much of the cost of low-income health insurance programs goes to eligibility determination?

There are so many different plans for different groups. If we just had one low-income category for lower prescription drug co-pays, applications would definitely be a lot simpler for the applicant, but I can't help thinking that there'd be a huge administrative savings.

|>


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 9:23 AM
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my latest guess is rm is the newest commenter or ogged


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 9:36 AM
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"Now watch this drive!"


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 9:49 AM
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I've got disgust for Bush but little hate. The time I did actually hate him was personal. Before the 2004 election the local HS's 'Young Democrats' sponsored a forum and debate over the election. My daughter was a senior and presented the pro-Kerry side during the debate. Her opponent was also a senior, who presented a pack of lies and smears against Kerry and said little pro-Bush. The 'Young Republican' was a female who had already swallowed the entire religious right-wing BS hook, line, and sinker and was enjoying her public shaming of Kerry, Liberals, and the 'Democrat party.'

At that time I hated Bush for polluting the minds of our children and setting us against each other in mean, vicious ways. Setting us against each other in ways that are not easily undone. I hated him for making me feel hate for a child.


Posted by: Tripp | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:04 AM
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read, I am not ogged. I lurk here off and on. I'm around enough to know something happened to ogged, not enough to know what it was, enough to be afraid to ask (not actually asking, here). Not sure if I violated commenting aesthetics in some way.

I think I first wrote here about a year ago when someone wanted to know why anyone would read _Harry Potter_.

I don't follow the advice to get a better username (random moniker? radioactive monkey?) because I like the anonymity.

End meta.


Posted by: rm | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:15 AM
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aha, cool
i know ogged had cancer and recovered and met a girlfriend and left and refused once to meet me which i think led him to leave the blog
though it seems it was not that cause, i mean the main cause, but my version of the story goes like that


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:20 AM
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Does anyone know how one would find out how much of the cost of low-income health insurance programs goes to eligibility determination?

Good luck. IME all social-service programs spend a significant amount of time and money to ensure that nobody Undeserving gets access to benefits. Because the constituency is by definition less powerful, false negatives are much more forgivable than false positives. That creates a powerful incentive for denying people and/or for being so scrupulous in paperwork requirements that even eligible people are not accepted into the program.

Predictably, a lot of the data on exactly how much these requirements cost is collected by advocates, who have an obvious bias. Most of what I've seen is fuzzy and speculative to the nth degree.

Probably somebody who reads GAO reports for a living would have something more useful to give you, but here's a press release titled New Surveys Show ID Requirements Cost More than They Save:

According to the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, Colorado will need approximately $2.8 million in additional county administrative dollars to keep an estimated 200 people off of the Medicaid rolls -- 170 of whom are children. HCPF estimates this would save the county $170,000. The cost estimates are based on the five extra minutes that [staff] would need to spend per application on the new documentation requirements.
However, as the new data shows, [the staff] are spending an additional 23 minutes per application on the new requirements -- more than four times longer than anticipated, meaning Colorado could be spending more than $12 million because of this new law.

Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:23 AM
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IT"S ALL ABOUT ME!


Posted by: OPINIONATED UNIVERSAL COMMENTER | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:29 AM
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I think my hatred flamed into radiant fury around the time I realized that they really had deliberately lied their way into a war that killed hundreds of thousands of people, bankrupted the U.S. for a generation, put the pursuit of the 9/11 malefactors on the back burner, and were going to get away with it. If it were up to me, these people would be tried a la Nuremberg and once convicted, hung by the neck until dead.

Instead, I'm really looking forward to taking a road trip in 20 years or so, traveling the country to piss on all their graves.

I may excessively carry grudges.


Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:32 AM
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Wow. Looks like Bush's lifetime sentence has begun. He knows and cares, too. Look at his shoulders sag. Wonder if Laura will leave him. I wonder if he'll drink himself to death.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:34 AM
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Or maybe not.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:39 AM
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IT"S ALL ABOUT ME!
sure, i once happened to think what a pity i miss home so much when i'm abroad and when i'm home i miss me being faraway
then i thought, i'm not that self-centered person, at least not that, narcisstically, coz i don't know anyone more modest and humble than me in my life
i think this thread about Mr. Bush is very Bush-centered and hatred-filled and i'm indifferent to beers and weddings so have to comment here
but i'm already going to work


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:40 AM
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If it were up to me, these people would be tried a la Nuremberg and once convicted, hung by the neck until dead.

Yes, except for the hanging bit. But tried, convicted and jailed forever, yeah.

Instead, I'm really looking forward to taking a road trip in 20 years or so, traveling the country to piss on all their graves.

I may excessively carry grudges.

I fully intend to celebrate mightily when Thatcher dies.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:44 AM
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In other words, you'd expect that 89% of coin flipping experiments would have margins larger than the one observed in the initial vote count.

The initial count was a 700 vote spread, but the way it's been going the final recount spread could be less than 100.

In the end it all will depend on the challenged ballots, the rejected absentee ballots, the court cases, and finally the Senate decision, so the first recount spread really isn't critical. But I have trouble seeing the phase we're in now coming up with a spread than 700 votes.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:52 AM
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"Troll" scientifically defined


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 10:56 AM
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160: Did people really not understand that? It just looked funny.

"The fact the incompetent and thin-skinned Bush is not well liked by the world's leaders is easy to understand."

This I rather doubt. I think they rather like him fine, but think he's a loser. Their own values are out of wack.


Posted by: David Weman | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 11:00 AM
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I don't think Bush is the type to really carry the weight of his failure as President (unlike someone like LBJ, who was crushed by Vietnam, and made a good tragic hero). And the idea of Laura leaving is very far-fetched. He'll hang out in Texas we're he's popular and enjoy his (eventual) grandkids and serve on some corporate boards.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 11:03 AM
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i know ogged had cancer and recovered and met a girlfriend and left and refused once to meet me which i think led him to leave the blog

Actually, read, he told me it's my fault.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 11:19 AM
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He'll come back when the Bass Playing Librarian gets tired of him.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 11:25 AM
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He'll come back when the Bass Playing Librarian gets tired of him.

Doesn't the anti-Ogged have to arise first, and then someone has to have a red cow, or some such thing? Where are the experts in eschatoggedy?


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 11:40 AM
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i'm happy to see the shadow of his shadow
and it's posted just three days ago, i didn't visit flckr so long time


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:16 PM
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Instead, I'm really looking forward to taking a road trip in 20 years or so, traveling the country to piss on all their graves.

20 years? Optimist. You'll probably have to settle for Cheney and Rumsfeld; Bush and Rice will probably still be around then.


Posted by: Gabriel | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:22 PM
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You should read Left Befogged to find out.


Posted by: rm | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:24 PM
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The Anti-Ogged will captivate us all, and win sole front-page privileges, by posting a 2,000-line list of every commenter ever, without a cut.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 11-21-08 12:55 PM
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serve on some corporate boards

I actually wonder about that. I mean, I spent much of the week before last with a roomful of C-level execs, and everyone without exception was terrified of another Republican presidency. I mean, nobody on God's green earth would hire him as an executive, with actual responsibilities, and can you really see him as a nonexec director - a grave, supervising party pooper/wise man archetype figure? I mean, the world is full of terrible nonexecs, but there are limits.

Sarkozy's remark to Putin ("If you do that [hang Mikhail Saakashvili] you'll end up looking like Bush") is more than telling. The fact Putin apparently took it to heart is even better.

I suppose something like AEI will find him a sinecure, though. The union buries its dead.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 4:43 AM
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i was planning to put up a long thoughtful post about what watching oliver stone's "w" made me realise on this topic -- except now i find i have have to time to, beyond what hurriedly follows:

bush has another, deeper characteristic, which is very well masked indeed by his epic prickdom™: and that is a level of haplessness remarkable in someone who has reached his level of apparent achievement, which has throughout his life embroiled people against teir better judgement into empowering him

i think it does two things: it tempts otherwise quite shrewd people -- including and especially quite shrewd ultravillains with solid evil fiefdom in the upper tranches of the gop -- to convince themselves that something that they don't quite understand is gong on there (otherwise how has he lucked through to where he's got?) and if only they, with their tried-and-attested shrewdness-for-evil, can make up for that apparent (in fact very evident) lack, and coax this hapless kid into best realisation of what he seems to have (that they don't quite get) then REPUBLICAN DOMINATION FOR A GENERATION and related sinister foolishness. The second is, that quite unlikely people feel inappropriately sorry for him and aggressively defensive on his behalf: the increasingly self-deluding ferocity of the noise-machine (i think) somewhat derived from heavy hidden awareness that the requirement for extreme defence was intense; plus "the thing mr hapless had" being (as they felt) mysterious and hard to define, the only way to protect it and nurture without having to analyse it is to surround it by bombastic hewitt-esque rhetoric in lieu of analysis or public reason (which they are anyway quite bad at)

and the more obvious it became that what mr hapless had was in fact advanced not to say contagious haplessness, the more helplessly angry his defenders became, because they knew -- or anyway half-intuited -- that they TOO had been gamed, to no workable purpose whatever, by the greatest twit of the age

(all the above, as i say, largely masked by his epic prick-dom: the upper tones hiding the deep tones, as a pretentious winetaster would say)

(lucky you that i only had time for this much eh?)


Posted by: tierce de lollardie | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 5:37 AM
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He'd got a hideout in Paraguay in the Golden Triangle. He's also welcome in the Gulf States and China. He doesn't need us.

Though maybe, now that he's powerless, his friends will all dump him.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 5:50 AM
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Yeah, I don't know if Bush has any particular affinity for the USA as opposed to various other places where family friends live and hold power. But he hasn't done much to help the rest of the Bilderbergers, so who knows.


Posted by: Cryptec Nid | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 5:56 AM
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Not a single, solitary, actual dyed-in-the-wool progressive has, as far as I can tell, even been mentioned for a position in the new administration. Not one.

I'm not terribly surprised. But it's very troubling to be completely frozen out. People act like the left-liberal blogosphere wants total control and is demanding the moon, but we're not. We'd really just like recognition as an essential part of the coalition instead of being treated as dubious outsiders.

Getting Bush out of there is Mission Accomplished. But we still have to deal with a hostile Democratic Party. We should put all our money and energy into primary campaigns from here on out.

The best thing that's happened so far is Waxman, and that was the House Democrats.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 6:25 AM
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174: There's boards and then there's boards. KBR will be looking for different "qualities" than, say, Dell.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 7:31 AM
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178. The problem with that article is that it simply constitutes whining unless he comes up with a list of dyed in the wool progressives who would actually be more competent than the people nominated.

Yes, disappointing for everyone, inside and outside the United States. but BHO is not facing a situation on any front in which he can play games, and if he judges the progressive candidates to be lightweights, he won't appoint them, and rightly.

Which said, I have to notice that the Blair comparison is rapidly spreading through the British blogosphere. Late adopters include my former MP, who was too decent a guy to stay in politics long.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 7:47 AM
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I don't think that's really true. Why the guy in the comments didn't name anybody, I don't know. Maybe he doesn't watch comments closely. (As for "not playing games" -- WTF? That's what politicians do. He's playing the "ignore the liberals" game right now).

Schakowsky, Waxman, maybe Nadler, deFazio of Oregon, Blumenauer of Oregon, Wexler of Florida from the House, and Harkin, Feingold, and Leahy from the Senate all strike me as possible worth at least a trial balloon. I'm less familiar with the governors, but there are some sharp ones out there.

I think that it's a combination of the same old Democratic flinch and cringe, combined with Obama's own caution and doubts about liberals, combined with a realistic fear of the idiot media. But the absence of even any friendly signals was pretty striking.

In the case of foreign policy, it's more that no one believes that the military / intelligence / foreign policy establishment would ever respect, obey, or allow to remain alive any President who was not a realist or a neocon. A realistic fear.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 8:08 AM
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Perhaps he wants those people in Congress. I might. What strikes me more forcibly is the lack of theoreticians. One of your compatriots blogged this somewhere, but I can't go looking for it now. It's all doers and no thinkers. The academy, generally, is on the outside with the radicals.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 8:20 AM
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See, what's striking to me is the absence of even a polite nod or a trial balloon. That's what the Nation guy was saying. No progressive has even been mentioned. That's a pretty clear message: stay in the back of the bus.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 8:29 AM
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I agree it's a bit self defeating if, as he well might, he needs to mobilise his base again for any reason. Perhaps he simply calculates that the Republicans are going to be poison for long enough that he can afford to ignore them. After all, there's no evidence he's remotely a progressive himself, and he might be indulging himself by appointing people (apart from the ones with the big IOUs) he's comfortable with - he said he would govern from the centre, and by god he's delivering on that.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 8:58 AM
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Some British blogger observed the other day that Obama is a conservative (old/anywhere-but-America style) who has realised that change can no longer be resisted.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 9:00 AM
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One thing, though -- Obama's base was not the liberal blogosphere. He has his own netwrok and own organization. He doesn't need us us as much was we sometimes think.

We're more like the shock troops who softened up the enemy and worked on public opinion. He came in later with a new bunch of people.

Nonetheless, it was a pretty insulting message.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 9:54 AM
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Unlike LBJ, who helped promote revolutionary change (mostly social) by actually helping the poor, and of course like FDR, Obama will try to sustain the current oppressive militaristic social structures with sops to the bourgeois that do not hurt the rich.

Newberry is of course correct. HooverbamaReagan is the last gasp of neo-liberal neo-feudalism, an attempt to freeze the current inequality in place...forever. Will he fail? No. Hope will die.

After going thru a depression, led by a black democrat, and emerging into a 2nd Gilded Age, there will be no further delusions for progressives.

And as we skraelings watch thru the plate glass window rich women, blacks, hispanics eating their arugula and drinking micro-beers, the liberals will be selling signed copies of the banquet menus. Isn't the equality wonderful? Almost like being at the table ourselves, they will say.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 10:17 AM
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70 years after Social Security, and 40 years after Medicare, here we are with massive inequality and a financial train wreck and 2+ wars.

Watch carefully. Yes, healthcare is important. What is equally important is who pays for healthcare.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 10:30 AM
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187: And as we skraelings watch thru the plate glass window rich women, blacks, hispanics eating their arugula and drinking micro-beers, the liberals will be selling signed copies of the banquet menus. Isn't the equality wonderful? Almost like being at the table ourselves, they will say.

OK, bob, this one was pretty inspired. But of course at the end of the day the skraelings will still be there after the soft bloated feasters inextricably caught up in their status games and refined tastes have destroyed themselves. Take heart.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 4:13 PM
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rich women, blacks, hispanics eating their arugula and drinking micro-beers,

You missed the welfare queens driving Cadillacs and the little list of single mothers who get pregnant just to beat the housing list.

Bob = yesterday's rightwing horseshit today.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 5:04 PM
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To defend Bob, loony though he is (skraelings?), I read "women, blacks, hispanics" in that sentence as identifying a demographically inclusive overclass, not to imply that white men were getting squeezed out. My understanding was that it was meant to indicate "Even once all the identity-politics battles are won and race and gender do not determine access to money and power, there will still be an underclass and an overclass, and we will still be the underclass looking in at the oligarchs feasting while we starve."

Which, overstated and weird, but nothing to be ashamed of and certainly something I've heard from saner sounding people in the past.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 5:22 PM
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Skraelings: name the early Norse gave to natives they encountered in Greenland. I thought it rather imaginative and apt.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 6:12 PM
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To quote TNH:

Just because you're on his side doesn't mean he's on your side.

Obama was never one of us. None of them were. It was just that he was preferable to the others.


Posted by: jim | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 6:42 PM
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This is relevant.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11-22-08 6:53 PM
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Remember when Bush said that the GOP "shouldn't try to balance the budget on the backs of the poor?"


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11-23-08 10:28 AM
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Remember when Bush said that the GOP "shouldn't try to balance the budget on the backs of the poor?"


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11-23-08 10:29 AM
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Remember when Bush said that the GOP "shouldn't try to balance the budget on the backs of the poor?"


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11-23-08 10:29 AM
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It was starting to come back to me after 196, but then I lost it.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 11-23-08 10:45 AM
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