Re: True Fact: Released On Fontana Records

1

I nominated _Head Like A Hole_ for a campaign song, but Monday I was feeling generous:

Twenty-twenty-twenty four hours to go I wanna be sedated
Nothin' to do and no where to go-o-oh I wanna be sedated
Just get me to the airport put me on a plane
Hurry hurry hurry before I go insane
I can't control my fingers I can't control my brain
Oh no no no no no
Twenty-twenty-twenty four hours to go....
Just put me in a wheelchair, get me on a plane
Hurry hurry hurry before I go insane


Posted by: Econolicious | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 6:55 PM
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This isn't a game. Booing Bush is so far from the punishment and ostracism that he deserves for what he's done that to consider booing him to be an appropriate consequence for his actions is an insult to America.

Yeah, well, you do what you gots to do. Junior's not going to The Hague as he ought to. Might as well boo the monster.


Posted by: ed | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 6:56 PM
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I was cheered by the booing, and I hope Bush heard it. It pisses me off that TV didn't broadcast it and point out how little respect deserves. I'd rather see him impaled and fed to hogs, but, you know. You take what you can get.

Unfortunately, for 2000-2008, Bush is America. The future can be different, but that's where we are at the moment.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 6:56 PM
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OK, 2001-2008.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:11 PM
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Neighbor, please.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:12 PM
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I thought they were saying "boo-ush."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:16 PM
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I was saying "boo-ush."


Posted by: H. Moleman | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:19 PM
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The time has come to put away childish things, y'all. (The look on Obama's face in this vid makes me cringe a little, and reminds me of the parents in my neighborhood who ask their kids how they'd behave if Barack Obama were here to see them. That's the look I imagine they imagine him making.)


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:21 PM
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to consider booing him to be an appropriate consequence for his actions is an insult to America.

Well, he actually deserved to have the statue of Abraham Lincoln rise up from the Lincoln Memorial, walk across the Mall, and impale his ass (along with Cheney's et. al.) on the Washington Monument. That or the crowd should haved stormed the inaugural platform and hanged him from a fucking yardarm.

Instead the boo. Is there some other verbal or non-physical non-verbal opprobrium that could have been accomplished yesterday that he "deserve[d]"?


Posted by: Ugh | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:37 PM
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I would have preferred silence.


Posted by: Becks | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:48 PM
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Visually speaking, silence + turning away would have been hard for the coverage to ignore, but difficult to coordinate as well.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 7:55 PM
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I was at the Lincoln Memorial, and we didn't hear any of the Na Na Goodbye there. Which is too bad, because I'm juvenile enough that I would like to have joined in. There were a few boos, but mostly contemptuous silence. Which was ok, I guess.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:04 PM
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|| This is unfortunate.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:07 PM
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|>


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:07 PM
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In that context, silence doesn't communicate much.

13: What did Fox say?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:11 PM
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How can a TV sexpert not have heard of fisting?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:21 PM
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We should probably understand that the common view of Bush isn't that he is a monster, merely a miserable failure. Had the Iraq War gone more swimmingly, had Katrina not happened or been managed semi-competently, had the financial system not seized up, hardly anyone would care that Bush started a war transparently for domestic political considerations, operated torture chambers, and spied on political dissidents. Sadly, the Leno/Letterman/Will Ferrell view of Bush as a swaggering nincompoop undermined his political success more effectively than all the moral outrage deservedly directed at him. "Na Na Hey Hey Goodbye" makes a lot more sense viewed in this light; the sentiment was "ha ha, you suck" and wholly devoid of indignation.


Posted by: kth | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:24 PM
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How can a TV sexpert not have heard of fisting?

Licensing standards for sexperts have really declined lately.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:47 PM
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The American Sexpertise Association has been trying to institute a certification program, but with little success.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:49 PM
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19: See, I had heard the organization had sexcommunicated her.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 8:55 PM
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20: Rimshot.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:00 PM
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Get ready for the first conspiracy theory of the Obama years: He's not really the president, because the first time he took the oath of office he messed up the words, and for the do-over, he didn't use a bible!


Posted by: Gaijin Biker | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:02 PM
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Well, less "conspiracy theory" than "stupid claim", but you know.


Posted by: Gaijin Biker | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:04 PM
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Rimshotjob.

(That's the ASA's preferred method of sexcommunication.)


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:07 PM
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Maybe the sexpert knows something we don't. Maybe she saw them herself, with her sex-ray vision.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:08 PM
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24: It's true; anything less wouldn't meet their rigorous sexpectations.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:09 PM
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Suddenly "terrorist fist jab" sounds a lot more painful.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:13 PM
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Has everyone at this blog gone completely crazy? The booing was awesome. Not as awesome as 9 would have been, but we live in a fallen world.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 9:42 PM
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He earned it the old fashioned way.

Who on earth has any reason to read Ms. Lopez anyway?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 10:01 PM
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Yglesias, apparently. I do wonder, especially at this point, why so many liberal pundits and bloggers continue to pay so much attention to places like the Corner.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 10:22 PM
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I suppose Ygl is paid to read tripe.

I am too, I guess, but at least it's not right wing ravings on the internet.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 10:38 PM
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Speaking of "released" and "records," have any of you lawyers read the Presidential Records EO?


Posted by: TJ | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 10:47 PM
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There was a lot less booing for Bush than there was for Lieberman. I didn't boo, because I felt like I'd be booing the ceremony, a little bit. I didn't hear any "hey hey, goodbye" singing. There was an older black woman standing by us who was clucking disapprovingly about the booing, and of course I didn't want to disappoint her.

I walked around the back of the capitol afterwards to watch Bush's helicopter take off, and there was a lot of "good riddance!" and "don't come back!" which I thought was good fun.

The best crowd reaction, though, was the seemingly inadvertent sharp intake of breath/mild hiss that greeted Cheney.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:01 PM
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Cheney probably gets that reaction wherever he goes. I'm sure he's used to it by now.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:13 PM
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A thread about whether it's good form to boo Bush. Becks, Becks, Becks, what are we going to do with you. A lot of those people probably had some distance to walk, you know, it's not like they could throw shoes.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:15 PM
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35: Sifu mentioned seeing McNabb denied entry. He might have been able to throw with success, but he did have some Cardinal failings.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:20 PM
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Has the loathing of dirty fucking hippies actually worked its way to the point where we are tut-tutting at a harmless public gesture of disapproval? For goodness sake, nobody even cussed or anything. This is nothing compared to "Hey, Hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today?"

And guess what? The chanters look a hell of a lot better to me than LBJ does in retrospect.

If we aren't able to separate the institution of the presidency from this particular president, then guess what? The institution of the presidency sucks, and deserves whatever disrespect comes its way.

Me, I admit to being sentimental about American institutions. I think the U.S. presidency really could be a sacred trust. Given that view, the most respectful thing that could happen is that George W. Bush would be unable to show his face in public without being mocked and booed.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:21 PM
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He wasn't denied entry, he just gave up. He would have gotten in for sure, and I bet he hadn't waited more than an hour or two (in the insane, suffocating crush of humanity). The rest of us just wanted it more.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:21 PM
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37: I don't think it was the institution of the presidency, per se, that people felt like being respectful of. For me, at least, it was a certain reverence for the whole "peaceful transfer of power" thing. I would certainly have been happy to boo the guy any other time.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:23 PM
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"Reverence for the peaceful transfer of power"? You're joking.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:25 PM
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Hey, I like it better than the alternative, okay? Anyhow, when you're there, with all the pomp, the fact that even a shithead tyrant like Bush can be induced by the structure of government to turn over power to somebody who's committed at some length to overturning most of what he did, somebody who may well open the door to Bush's future criminal prosecution, that seemed like something to be respectful of. I dunno.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:29 PM
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I'd bet fifty bucks that Jason Campbell didn't have to wait in any crushing throng of humanity.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:31 PM
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42: that's 'cuz he didn't go.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:34 PM
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I think the only people who avoided waiting in a crushing throng of humanity were the people on the platform. And possibly Ezra Klein.

I know, for instance, that Michael Bloomberg got to deal with approximately the same level of crushing-throng-of-humanity that I did, although he presumably had his security/entourage crushing him in line rather than random strangers.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:36 PM
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Oh god damn the facts. I don't owe you fifty bucks, do I?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:36 PM
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"Reverence for the peaceful transfer of power"

Yeah, that should've been booed, coming one day after the Israelis temporarily stopped killing Palestinian children because their parents voted for Hamas.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:37 PM
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46: right that's a good call. The best thing for everybody would have been for the crowd on the mall to riot, forcing Bush to declare martial law so that Obama couldn't take power. That'd show Israel what's up.

I mean, what the fuck are you even talking about?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:39 PM
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Though come to think of it, drawing proper attention to the fact the country finally managed to inaugurate a president that was actually elected is perhaps understandable, even if it did sound like boasting that you're toilet trained.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:40 PM
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47: yeah, because booing is *exactly* the same as riots in the street.

Do you even_ look_ at what you write?


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:42 PM
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48: so are you just bitter you could never in a million years have a leader with a cool middle name like "Hussein", or what?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:43 PM
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Just because everything is better in Europe doesn't mean you have to be a dick about it.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:43 PM
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49: I'm just saying you're an idiot, is all. I'm sorry it was confusing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:44 PM
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I mean, maybe it's just me, but when you have a high official of a country blubbering on about peaceful transitions of power when she herself is complicit in making sure the Palestinians would be punished very heavily for participating in just that, that's hypocritical enough to be boo-able.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:46 PM
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53. But you'd need a big sign to let people know that you were booing at the hypocrisy of "a high official of a country blubbering on about peaceful transitions of power when she herself is complicit in making sure the Palestinians would be punished very heavily for participating in just that".
A bit wordy.


Posted by: Nakku | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:49 PM
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Dude they have fuck-all to do with each other. I mean, really. How can you boast about the Netherlands having pleasant canals when there's no right of free speech? Hypocrite.

I realize that the role the US has played in the world, including in the middle east, is deeply, deeply crappy. But that doesn't actually mean that the fact that we're getting a world-historically awful leader out of office without bloodshed is a bad thing. Even if his replacement turns out to be no prize on the foreign policy front, which, hey, I'll grant you that possibility.

I mean, seriously. "Hey, check it out, my baby learned to walk!" "Oh yeah? Well your ancestors slaughtered native Americans." SNAP!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:49 PM
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If Obama has said: "I'm not going to celebrate our peaceful transition to power, in solidarity with my brothers from Hamas," I think things would have gotten real interesting real quick.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:50 PM
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56: okay, actually, that would have been funny as shit.

When I was in line, this guy (from New Orleans, appropriately enough) was talking about how he wished Obama would pull out a Koran to swear in on, just to fuck with people. Some other guy said "or he could really mess with everybody and pull out a Torah."


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:52 PM
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52: not doing a very good job of it so far, but never mind.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:54 PM
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Also, Sifu, was "paint the white house black" played at any inaugural event/ball? I was really hoping to hear that it was. "Chocolate City" also really needs a lyrics update.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:55 PM
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59: heh, I certainly hope so. I didn't go to any balls.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:56 PM
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A) Becks, if you're up (unlikely, I know), you're just trolling, right? I mean, really, you think people shouldn't have booed so that wingnuts wouldn't be able to say that Democrats hate America? Newsflash: the wingnuts would have found a reason to say that regardless.

B) Martin, what are you talking about? Are you talking about some specific utterance of "peaceful transfer of power" or something? Because I'm pretty sure Jetpack was talking about the broader idea that power was peacefully transferred.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:57 PM
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57: I was miffed at first that he left out the Buddhists in his people-of-faith tally, but then I figured that he was including them among the non-believers, which was deeply Zen.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:58 PM
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62: It would have been great if he'd just listed the whole top 20.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-21-09 11:59 PM
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41: Maybe it was reverence for all the pomp that made someone like Bush possible in the first place, though, is kind of what I'm getting at. If you really want to celebrate the ability to peacefully transition power -- and I say this fully understanding that there were spooky signals throughout the past eight years that indicated this might not happen -- irreverence would seem like a pretty good way to go. And as much as it sucks that America couldn't get its shit together to impeach the man, it would suck even more if it couldn't get its shit together to merely express disapproval at a time that would particularly sting.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:01 AM
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Also, 61.1 is so right. If we've learned anything by this point, it's that should never, ever do or not do anything in the hope that it's going to elicit some kind of fellow-feeling for "the Left" from wingnut-America.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:05 AM
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64: hey, if I were there in 2000 I would have booed all up in that joint. I just feel like things have, at long last, worked a little bit like they're ostensibly supposed to, and that's a time to be respectful, rather than pointlessly petulant -- I mean, Bush got on his plane to Texas, and immediately held a rally featuring nothing but adoring mouth-breathers, and if you think he couldn't rationalize away the boos at the inauguration while lapping up the adoration there, you haven't been paying attention to how that fuckhead is.

Honestly, I would trade two million proudly upraised middle fingers for even one of his torturing flunkies seeing the inside of a jail cell, and the (slim) best hope of that was and is to get him the hell out of power as seamlessly as possible.

Besides, you know what probably really rankled him? Having to sit there and listen to Obama's speech about fixing his mistakes. No rationalizing that away.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:05 AM
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I know you're talking to someone else, DS, but now I'm wondering what you're talking about. I mean, I find all the royalist pageantry off-putting, and oddly out of place in an erstwhile republic, but I'm not sure how the realized expectation of a peaceful transfer of power led to Bush. Except, I suppose, that people could have staged a coup in 2000 and placed Clinton or Gore on the throne. But there's an unbad argument to be made that that would have been worse, I think.

Maybe I'm missing your point?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:06 AM
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It would have been great if he'd just listed the whole top 20.

Except that I kind of want the New Agers and Scientologists in gulags. Let's not go overboard with the religious tolerance thing.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:07 AM
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See, I didn't know that you were going to agree with my 61.1 in your 65, or I would have agreed with your 64 in my 67. They totally should have had me administer the oath of office.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:08 AM
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68: no love for loathing Eckankar?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:11 AM
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Yeah, I hate them too, but I was trying to be concise. I'd have been fine with a Wiccan doing the invocation instead of that awful charlatan.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:13 AM
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67: It's seemed to me that Bush's handlers were able to rely heavily on the props of pageantry and reflexive reverence for the pomp associated with the Presidency to enable their "Unitary Executive"/Joyride-to-Hell agenda. In this I agree with Mark Graber over at Balkinization: "The danger we need rescuing from is not simply the politics of George Bush, but a media fostered politics of celebrity." I'm happy that Obama is likelier to use these things to enable policies I agree with, but the dynamic itself is still troubling.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:17 AM
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Oh, okay. I was confusing your points about pageantry and peaceful transfer of power -- though, really, I think they're related in some important ways. Still and all, the pageantry part of the deal doesn't do much for me, even if I'm a big sucker for enduring American symbols like the Lincoln memorial. And insofar as reverence for the office of the presidency provided Bush with cultural cover, that wasn't a good thing. I'm just not ready to throw out the baby with the bath water. (I'm not even sure that cliché makes sense in this context.)


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:21 AM
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72: well, but I think in some sense he relied on the reflexive reverence for pomp on the part of Senate Democrats.

I don't know quite what I can say about Obama fighting the politics of celebrity, but if he can make his moves towards transparency stick I think a lot of the worst abuses of Bush will be much harder to pull off. Of course, I also really don't know how he'd make it stick.

By the way, about the royalist pomp of the inauguration per se, I was having feelings similar to Ari, but being in the crowd, and seeing all that pomp and deference directed towards a non-white dude was kind of great. Let's keep it up until we have a female president, and then, yeah, we can totally lay off.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:23 AM
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Golda was talking to me, dick. Mind your own business.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:25 AM
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Tweety hates the gays.


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:26 AM
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76: what? We've already had several gay presidents.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:27 AM
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75: oh now I'm totally booing at your successor's inauguration.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:28 AM
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One nice thing about Obama is that he looks good in all of the pomp/ceremony/head of state stuff, but also projects that he knows that the ceremonial stuff is bullshit and that he wants to get to work. A good combination in a president.


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:29 AM
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There better fucking be a good ceremony when we have our first openly gay president.


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:31 AM
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Gayest presidents: 5) TR (so homoerotic, so butch) 4) Lincoln (the whole Joshua Speed thing) 3) Millard Fillmore (Millard Fillmore?) 2) JFK (see TR) 1) Morgan Freeman (don't get me started).


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:32 AM
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I'm willing to bet that I could turn 81, with some minor modifications, into a six-figure book advance.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:34 AM
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I think Chester A. Arthur had kind of a bear thing going on.


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:38 AM
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82: yes, but will the film be a faithful adaptation?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:38 AM
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Oh man, 84 is going to make my Amazon recommendations eight kinds of hilarious for the next while here.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:38 AM
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82: The "Marilyn Monroe was a beard" book alone would get get you six figures easy.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:39 AM
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This has Sokal hoax written all over it. If I weren't such a gutless weenie vigorous champion of rigorous scholarship, I'd totally do it.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:55 AM
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I was annoyed at those who did, knowing this is how it would play out

Look fellers, you won. You don't need to bother with this weak Tim Burke crap any more.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 1:16 AM
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re: 88

Quite.

And with reference all the reverence bollocks... what DS said above, basically.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 3:22 AM
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It's been nearly 20 years since Thatcher relinquished power. But I still expect to have to queue for several hours to piss on her grave ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 3:23 AM
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66: Besides, you know what probably really rankled him? Having to sit there and listen to Obama's speech about fixing his mistakes.

Yes, that certainly struck me, and since I am a hypersensitive weenie, at some level it did give me a vague sense of personal unease despite my overwhelming disgust with Bush.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 3:50 AM
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One of the things I think all of us who like Obama like about him is his bone-level coolness, which seems to manifest itself in not getting shaken by petty childish taunts. (It's the opposite of, say, Palin, who has spent her entire time in the public eye slinging the dumbest mud she can find and crying foul whenever she gets splattered herself.) In the video I linked to in 8, you can see him do this almost unconscious little disapproving headshake when Biden jokes about Roberts, like, "We're not going to go there, dude." And sure, I think the whole thing about the inaugural address that was awesome was his tone of "We are going to be dignified and purposeful and that in itself is the worst kind of insult to our predecessors."

Mostly, I think he's right, in that four years of a post-Bush administration that whined about the rotten deal Bush left them would not have the intended effect of making Bush appear as obviously terrible as he was. The only thing that will ensure that the history books get it right is a sharp contrast with a subsequent administration that is competent, ethically careful, and hard-working. Taunting has no place in that environment.

But it's also important to remember that the general population is not this administration, and their booing is an expression of an understandable pissed-offedness and a feeling of powerless rage. Obama is trying to draw us into his mode of being cool and competent as the best revenge, but he hasn't done it yet, and the time for childish displays of anger is not yet over for most people.

I've said it like a billion times, but there's a difference between voters being childish and pissy and elected officials being childish and pissy. The latter have the power to do something about the situation, so their pissiness is an expression that they choose to bitch rather than fix it. The former, however? We get to bitch. I'm glad that we'll see far less bitchiness in the Obama admin (even from Emanuel, marvelous bitch though he be) than we saw from Bush, but I think the public still has some bitching to do, especially as certain amnesiac persons come to realize (as they surely will) they just wasted eight years fellating someone who spent more time complaining about how hard his job was than doing it.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 4:34 AM
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#92: I do like Obama's coolness. It's a good trait for a leader to have; Michael Corleone, rather than Sonny. Extending the Godfather analogy, that's also why I don't think the booing, shoe-throwing-in-effigy, chanting hey-hey-goodbye, etc., was appropriate. The inauguration was America putting the workings of its system of government on display to the world, and you don't take family disagreements public at a time like that.

The thing that bugged me the most about Obama's speech is that he made a big deal about including "non-believers" in his list of all the different faiths that make up America -- and then proceeded to blather about God's grace this and God-given that and how God calls on us to do stuff. I'd like to see an inauguration speech that just leaves God the hell out of it. Presumably, this would only come from our first atheist president (although why should that have to be the case?), something that I expect none of us will live to see.


Posted by: Gaijin Biker | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:02 AM
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For my money, there wasn't nearly enough booing. It should have been deafening from the first moment he was announced. I also have fantasies of him being refused service in restaurants for the rest of his life.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:18 AM
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Developing what I take to be Daniel's point, it's important that the winners act like winners now, which means that for now you have to maintain an attitude of confident expectation, whatever you actually think.

It doesn't matter whether you believe the President is actually the second coming or just another cynical centrist with a good speech writer, you have to convey to the administration in general that, as reasonable people, you calmly expect nothing less than your due (while lobbying your arses off and honing your critical faculties the while). This is an important part of "Now make me do it."

You also have to convey this to the media and to the rest of the world. Whether you can maintain this stance while going "neener" at the departing backs of the old guard is your call; I couldn't.

GB, Jefferson's first inauguration address included a single reference to "that Infinite Power which rules the destinies of the universe" in his closing remarks. I would guess that's as good as you'll get.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:22 AM
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We don't even know that the peaceful transfer of power was voluntary on Bush and Cheney's part. Maybe the people they talked to turned them down.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:25 AM
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re: 92

time for childish displays of anger is not yet over for most people.

Being angry isn't childish.

That's one of the things I hate most about a certain type of bourgeois liberalism. [not singling you out here]


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:25 AM
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I'd be behind the call for irreverence. He's a civil servant on a four-year employment contract, not the Priest-Avatar of the State, for heaven's sake.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:28 AM
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FWIW, it's entirely appropriate for the incoming regime to be all chilly and business like.

But why the general public shouldn't be allowed to vent, I have no idea ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:30 AM
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I was happy to see the non-believers part. Neither Bush was willing to accept non-believers, and they both said so (though not in their inaugural addresses).


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:31 AM
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Being angry isn't childish.

Throwing a public wobbly is. Anger needs to be controlled and used for organising to get the bastards banged up. Becks is right at 10 that silence would have seemed both more contemptuous and more dangerous.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:33 AM
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97: "Childish" modifies "displays" here, not "anger." I understand that there are different kinds of anger.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:34 AM
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"in that four years of a post-Bush administration that whined about the rotten deal Bush left them"

The ahistoricalism of Obama is a plan, a method to not reverse the neo-liberal achievements of the Bush administration but to consolidate and expand upon them. How can you reverse a policy you refuse to confront as part of history?

For example not discussing why we have forces in the ME/Afghanistan soon becomes:"Well, we have always had troops in the ME." Like we have always had troops in Germany & Korea.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:36 AM
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yeah, fair enough on 101 and 102.

Often the distinction between particular displays of anger and all displays of anger gets elided, though.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:37 AM
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Becks is right at 10 that silence would have seemed both more contemptuous and more dangerous.

No, this is the school of thought which holds that the very best kinds of anti-war protests would be those entirely made up of people wearing suits and handing in polite petitions. Jaroslav Hasek had a fine line on this with "The Party Of Moderate Progress Within The Bounds Of The Law".

Who was displaying "anger" anyway? I didn't watch the coverage on television, but in general when people are singing that song at a departing footballer or unpopular comedian, they're not angry, they're usually quite happy.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:37 AM
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Robyn Hitchcock: everybody knows that W sucks, but Rumsfeld is the anti-Christ.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:40 AM
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Few or none of the Presidents before Jackson were devout, orthodox, church-going denominational Christians. A big chunk were deists. Some were Unitarians, and many were born Episcopalians, but the Unitarians are heretics and in the South the Episcopalians are the lax Christians that the born-agains and fundamentalists reject.

The Christianists really have to distort American history and reject part of the tradition to make their claims about a "Christian Nation".


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:41 AM
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No, this is the school of thought which holds that the very best kinds of anti-war protests would be those entirely made up of people wearing suits and handing in polite petitions.

No, this is the school of thought that would have preferred Bush to have shat himself with fear of the "people of [America], who never have spoken yet", rather than comforting himself with the thought that he was regarded as a bad comedian.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:41 AM
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The point was not to communicate it to Bush; it's to communicate it to the rest of the world. Silence would not have translated over television.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:45 AM
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Boy, I think the booing was as appropriate as anything could possibly be. Remember, this is the guy who pulled all sorts of unprecedented shit to make sure that disapproving members of the public couldn't get anywhere near where he'd have to see and hear them -- what could be better than making it clear that those precautions were about protecting himself from the expressed contempt of the people he was supposed to represent?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:45 AM
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Silencing their enemies is a Republican method. I was at a Democratic inauguration celebration in the next county over, and a woman there who had done a lot of canvassing said that she was astonished when she found that Obama got 40% of the vote in her area (in Michelle Bachman's district). She had expected 10%, based on the people she'd talked to. Republicans have aggressively and noisily monopolized the public space, and Democrats and liberals have been intimidated. At this point, there's no such thing as a dignified silence by Democrats, since it can't be distinguished from a cringing silence.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:47 AM
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Plenty of singing where I was. Those not singing were smiling.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:48 AM
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there's no such thing as a dignified silence by Democrats, since it can't be distinguished from a cringing silence.

This, exactly.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:49 AM
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108: Oh come on; exactly the same rationale as "if those anti-war protests had been made up of quiet and respectful gestures by ordinary proper Americans and not DFHs, think how much more effective they would be!". Tim Burke had a whole blog made up of that sort of thing at one point and it was desperately unconvincing then.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:50 AM
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It's appropriate because W hid for the duration of his pretzeldency in his Republican-only events or used military bases as props, depriving us of our chance to say what we think and how we feel to his face until now.


Posted by: shpx.ohfu | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:50 AM
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Silence would not have translated over television.

Well if you're looking for a strong image, silence would still have been more menacing, but everybody could have turned round and dropped their pants.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:51 AM
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Mostly silence for GHWB, in marked contrast to applause for Carter and Clinton.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:51 AM
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113: or to put it as I have done before, there is a fine line between expressing aloof contempt and a determination to show that one is above petty conflicts, and simply being punked. Obama has what it takes to carry this off; most don't.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:51 AM
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Or, what LB said 5 minutes ago cos I'm a slow typer.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:52 AM
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114. Bollox. If you think a million people who had been noisily enjoying themselves suddenly falling silent and staring down the bastard would convey the same message as if one of their spokespeople tried to deliver a polite petition, you must have the thickest skin going. It's the nearest thing to pitchforks.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:55 AM
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It's like the Fanon thing. Fanon believed that after generations of cringing enforced by by random brutality, colonial peoples had to use violence themselves before they would believe they didn't have to cringe. There's been a lot of intimidation of left-liberal speech, often on grounds of "appropriateness", and that has to change.

It will be interesting to see whether the media atmosphere changes. It hasn't so far. At some point the non-winger talking heads have to start calling out and humiliating the Kristols and Goldbergs and Broders and so on.

I don't know whether that's possible, though, because the public air has all been privatized and is all controlled by big-money people with axes to grind.

It will be an interesting test of my media theory. Are the media primarily being used to promote a low-tax, pro-war agenda, or do the media just suck up to whoever happens to be in power at any given moment, or is it governed entirely by viewer numbers and ad sales?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:05 AM
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It's the nearest thing to pitchforks.

Not anywhere near as satisfying as the air suddenly turning black from a barrage of thrown shoes, though.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:11 AM
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I would have loved to see Bush running to the helicopters while security tried to hold back the crowd. That would have been a dignified, effective statement.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:13 AM
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Are the media primarily being used to promote a low-tax, pro-war agenda, or do the media just suck up to whoever happens to be in power at any given moment, or is it governed entirely by viewer numbers and ad sales?

Yes.

Freedom of the press ... is freedom to print such of the proprietors' prejudices as the advertisers won't object to.
- Hannen Swaffer
Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:14 AM
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This is nothing compared to "Hey, Hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today?"

Now, PF, if only those dirty fucking hippies had been more civil, we'd have been out of Vietnam so much sooner.

This is the pearl-clutchiest post (and comment section) ever.

On preview: oh hi, 114.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:16 AM
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I'm wondering whether Roberts' flubs indicate some kind of bad conscience. Apparently he flubbed the oath again when they repeated the ceremony in order to get the morons at Fox to shut up. Maybe Obama intimidates him.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:19 AM
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Justice Roberts of Czech descent. The immigration officer apparently didn't want to write down a name with all those Zs and haceks and so on in it.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:21 AM
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124: OFE, this is a test of my theory that they have an active political agenda and are not just sucking up to the party in power.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:23 AM
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This is really bizarre:

Yesterday I noted in a TPMDC world exclusive--theme music, please--that I had talked with someone who works with Roberts. This person noted to me about ten days ago that Roberts was studying hard for the inaugural and was taking his preparation very seriously. At the time I didn't give it much thought. But I should have asked myself why he'd need to study at all. The oath is short enough that one might easily memorize it and you could always bring notes if you didn't but it doesn't seem like the latter occurred to the chief justice.

Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 6:29 AM
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LsxxBTK-kuQ


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:00 AM
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128. Oh, they do. People like Murdoch use their wealth to advance their noisome prejudices, and their agenda is the agenda of the very rich - to safeguard their fortunes and place themselves nd their friends above the law. But they will always suck up to the party in power if they think they can use it to advance that agenda.

Frex, in Britain, Murdoch was Thatcher's noisiest cheerleader for years; then Blair had him to dinner, so he supported NuLab for another decade; now he has concluded that Brown is a busted flush, so he's gone back to the Tories. He's inconsistent, unprincipled scum, but he's got an agenda all right.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:08 AM
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Murdoch was recently reported to hate Bill O'Reilly. Possibly he's hoping to reposition Fox.

Switching from Thatcher to Blair doesn't really represent an enormous move, though. I'm sure that Blair blocked the way for a lot of people Murdoch never would have supported.

This is an old argument I've been making, that bad news reporting is never the result of incompetence or inadvertence, but is what management wants. It's just stupid to complain about Britt Hume or Chris Matthews or William Kristol as though they were principals, because they're all lackeys.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:14 AM
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If you think a million people who had been noisily enjoying themselves suddenly falling silent and staring down the bastard would convey the same message as if one of their spokespeople tried to deliver a polite petition, you must have the thickest skin going. It's the nearest thing to pitchforks.

It would work wonderfully well in a movie. Not as well, I suspect in real life.

In any case, the proper response to anyone whining about it is to point out that yes, when you run the country into the ground, people might boo you. Straightforward solution to that problem!


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:20 AM
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So, given that he deserves much worse than boos, one cannot take a mindless pleasure? To whom one cannot stab, one must remain silent? Pish.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:25 AM
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It is fully appropriate that Bush continue to be booed every time he appears in public, up to and including when his dead ass is lying in state.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:30 AM
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I do think that "Na Na Hey Hey" was a bit of an unimaginative choice of song, and that perhaps the three young men recently arrested at a Portsmouth/Tottenham Hotspur game for a wildly obscene and unacceptable chant about Sol Campbell might have been commissioned to put their talents to better use, as part of their community service.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:46 AM
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93: The inauguration was America putting the workings of its system of government on display to the world, and you don't take family disagreements public at a time like that.

Over one million dead Iraqis say that your rotten ex-President wasn't just a "family disagreement".

(They say it in a lurching, dead voice like zombies would, but loudly. And they throw shoes.)


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:46 AM
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136: I watched that match just to see what they would sing, but stupid Fox Sports tamped down the audio feed. What did they settle on?


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:48 AM
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I do think that "Na Na Hey Hey" was a bit of an unimaginative choice of song.

You probably grumble about Handel's Messiah at Christmas too.

You don't take family disagreements public at a time like that.

Bush is not in my family. The last thing I want the world to think is we Americans are all thinking "Bush may not be the best President, but he's my President, and I'm and American above all!" or anything like that.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:54 AM
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I do think that "Na Na Hey Hey" was a bit of an unimaginative choice of song,

There is a real problem with spontaneous expressions of emotion from a crowd that doesn't have time to rehearse -- the repetoire is limited to the familiar.

This is probably a reason to seed creative people in various sporting events to try and get useful chants ingrained as part of the typical American mob's useful vocabulary. We could fund it as part of the stimulus package.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:55 AM
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This sounds like a job for ... orange post titles.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:57 AM
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It was pitch perfect. Singing "Na Na Hey Hey Tell Her Goodbye" comes from South Side White Sox baseball when the opponent (the Rangers, say) doesn't have what it takes.


Posted by: Mo MacArbie | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:00 AM
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"Are you Gingrich in disguise?"
"Are you Gingrich in disguise?"
"Are you Gingrich in disguise?"
"Are you Gingrich in disguise?"


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:01 AM
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"Na Na Hey Hey" was a bit of an unimaginative choice of song

Sure, but the obvious choice is still pretty obscure.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:02 AM
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Singing "Na Na Hey Hey Tell Her Goodbye" comes from South Side White Sox baseball when the opponent (the Rangers, say) doesn't have what it takes.

Also every other sports team. And it's "Kiss Him", not "Tell Her", technically.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:02 AM
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Another obvious option


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:05 AM
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145: OK, Wiki, but still.

Write your own damn song(s).


Posted by: Mo MacArbie | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:09 AM
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You probably grumble about Handel's Messiah at Christmas too.

Well, it's an Easter oratorio, so.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:10 AM
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"Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell".


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:13 AM
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Becks is right at 10 that silence would have seemed both more contemptuous and more dangerous.

No, this is wrong. Silence would conveyed much more of a sense that the crowd was cold and tired. Because it was. How do you get 2 million to do stony silence?


Posted by: Gabriel | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:17 AM
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So, given that he deserves much worse than boos, one cannot take a mindless pleasure? To whom one cannot stab, one must remain silent? Pish.

I agree that the whole crowd starting to chant "Stab! Stab! Stab!" would have been better. While moving ever closer to Bush, of course.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:18 AM
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138: Everyone turned off the audio - it was truly disgusting. It's the same chant that Spurs fans have always used against Campbell ever since he left the team so I daresay you can find it on Google pretty easily.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:19 AM
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(it's to the tune of "Lord of the Dance" if that helps)


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:19 AM
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"Oh I'll be a good boy,
I'm trying so hard to behave
Because there's one thing I know,
I'd like to live long enough to savour
That's when they finally put you in the ground
I'll stand on your grave and tramp the dirt down."

Though the melody doesn't really lend itself to a big crowd sing-along.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:19 AM
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"Reverence for the peaceful transfer of power"

While this sentiment is unexpected from Sifu and therefore sort of charming, I am sick to death of the peaceful transfer of power being used as yet another example of American exceptionalism. While it's worth reminding ourselves that this isn't the historical norm, it's not like we've got a monopoly on it. Let's see: all of Western Europe (you foreigners would tell us if there was a coup in England, right?), almost all of the Americas, Australia, Japan, India, Bangladesh, S. Korea, Israel (with an asterisk), S. Africa, Ghana, Cameroon, Niger . . . . And, for the record, the transfer of power is peaceful in a lot of non-democracies as well. Not much violence when Raul Castro took over.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:23 AM
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Not much violence when Raul Castro took over.

That's not much of a transfer of power, though. Just a succession. But point taken.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:26 AM
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Maybe Bush could be given some kind of "Thank you for not mounting a coup" award just so the rest of the world knows how civilized we are here.

I'd still bet that Cheney and Addington, at least, brainstormed declaring a state of emergency and refusing to leave. Giuliani tried to do that in NYC after 9/11, because he was so important and people loved him so much.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:27 AM
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"Thank you for not mounting a coup" award

I would think 2000 leaves him ineligible for that one.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:29 AM
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Maybe a "Thank you for not mounting another coup" award, sort of a rehab award.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:31 AM
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155: also, most of those countries have a much longer unbroken record of peaceful transitions of power than the US. The last non-peaceful transition in the UK was, I suppose, 1688. The last one in France was 1944. The last one in Germany was 1945.
But the US had a non-peaceful transition as recently as 1963...


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:31 AM
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"Masters of War" is the obvious and most approprate choice, but probably unsingable under the circumstances.

And I hope that you die
And your death'll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And I'll watch while you're lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I'll stand o'er your grave
'Til I'm sure that you're dead


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:36 AM
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I agree that the whole crowd starting to chant "Stab! Stab! Stab!" would have been better

Or just all pointing and screaming, cf. Donald Sutherland in "Invasion of the Body Snatchers".

Silence is a shit idea. Silence is a sign of respect - people shut up when Obama was speaking, and they're silent at funerals. Plus it doesn't come over well on camera. If you see Bush walking out of the White House and you can't hear anything, you don't think "oh, everyone's treating him with dignified scorn". But if you hear hooting and jeering in the background, the message comes across.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:36 AM
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But the US had a non-peaceful transition as recently as 1963...

Useful to remind folks that there's been political violence in the U.S. in recent history, but JFK wasn't assasinated by a competing political faction.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:36 AM
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163 is a comment about 1963. Spooky!


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:38 AM
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AWB @92 and LB @110 get it exactly right (as does D^2).

One of the things about Bush that most infuriated me was his absolute inversion of the fundamental fact that the President is (as I think DS said) no more than a civil servant. Whitman said that, in America, the President lifts his hat to the citizen, not the other way around. That principle has been weakening ever since, but it was incredibly important to Bush to slay it. The man made people at his rallies sign loyalty oaths, FFS. He needs never to go out in public without hearing opprobrium.

If he wants me to explain the particulars of my complaints, I'll do so in a pleasant and reasonable tone. Until then, I'll be using rather sterner language whenever I get the chance.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:38 AM
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JFK wasn't assasinated by a competing political faction

Your naivete is charming, my deah.


Posted by: Lyndon Baines Johnson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:38 AM
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163 is a comment about 1963. Spooky!

Even spookier: JFK's Unfogged pseud was Lincoln, and Lincoln's Unfogged pseud was Kennedy.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:41 AM
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The 1975 transmission was peaceful, but it was of dubious legality, and we ended up with an appointed President and an appointed Vice President.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:42 AM
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It is fully appropriate that Bush continue to be booed every time he appears in public, up to and including when his dead ass is lying in state.

Hear, hear.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:44 AM
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JFK wasn't assasinated by a competing political faction.

You might not have considered the Communist Party or the "Fair Play for Cuba Committee[1]" to be all that credible a competing faction, but even under the "lone assassin" theory, Lee Harvey Oswald was definitely a politically motivated assassin.

[1] A very unique type of pro-Castro political association; no other pro-Castro pressure group was entirely made up of anti-Castro Cubans and funded by the CIA.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:46 AM
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168: he resigned and his VP took over. What's dubious about that?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:48 AM
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170: you'd probably be interested to know that the Communist Party cell in St Petersburg in 1908 consisted of five men, four of whom were working for the Okhrana.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:49 AM
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he resigned and his VP took over. What's dubious about that?

Ford wasn't his elected VP - Agnew had been, but he resigned first.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:52 AM
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172: ajay, it's hardly surprising that the Russkies were Commies.

/ignorant American>


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:53 AM
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173:

It's worse than that: they managed to convince everyone that Agnew resigned, but the truth is he was murdered.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:55 AM
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So is the theory that Carl Albert should have been president rather than Ford?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:56 AM
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Sorry, 170 is unclear - obviously the FPCC nationally wasn't entirely made up of anti-Castro Cubans, that would be weird, but the New Orleans cell which LHO joined was, more or less.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:56 AM
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I love the name Spiro T. Agnew. So sordid.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:01 AM
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Oh, bother. Let conservatives cry lèse majesté all they want. Pie-tossing is the last best public redress.

Where I spent the inauguration there was a great deal of singing but nothing joined to the ceremony, which we could not see or hear. I have a recording of a large crowd singing "My Girl" but replacing "my girl" with "Obama"—it will make your nose crinkle. Helps the time pass at a security checkpoint, anyway.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:05 AM
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Back to the post, I'm with Becks. You don't boo a head of state. This has nothing to do with an absence of personal dislike and everything to do with simple respect. I remember a thread here some time ago in which several people said they would refuse to shake Bush's hand, if they found themselves in a situation in which Bush's hand was offered for shaking. This strikes me as the same sort of base incivility.

Love the sinner, hate the sin and all that. Bush is a bad man, but he's still a human being.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:09 AM
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Are you objecting to being rude to him on the basis of his status as a human being, or as a head of state? If it's as a human being, I think he's done enough wrong to suffer under a little booing and refusal to shake his hand. If it's as a head of state, I think it's actively pernicious to behave as if the respect due to a head of state mandates public behavior that conceals disapproval of that same person's policies as head of government. (For someone who's only a head of state, I suppose there's nothing wrong with meaningless shows of respect.) That's exactly the problem with the US combination of the offices of head of state and head of government in the same person.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:13 AM
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Love the sinner, hate the sin and all that. Bush is a bad man, but he's still a human being.

Are we parenting Bush? He's a really bad man.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:13 AM
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171: His VP had been appointed, and a new VP was appointed for him. So we had two unelected officials in the top positions. IIRC the constitutionality of appointing a VP was quite questionable, but no one had the nerve to challenge it.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:13 AM
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You don't boo a head of state.

Would you grant the same respect to Robert Mugabe? Bush is a war criminal. If it were up to me, he'd be desperately filing appeals to prevent his hanging. He ought to be on his knees thanking God that booing is the worst he has to face because he's earned far, far worse.

This strikes me as the same sort of base incivility.

As opposed to legalizing torture and bombing a country back to the stone age for no better reason than he could. Gotcha.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:14 AM
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180: Awww, he's still a human being? You're making me misty.

Reflexive "respect" for the office is part of the problem IMO, but even if I bought into that, Bush's open disrespect of his own office would have rendered that sort of defence inoperative a long time ago. "Civility" is misplaced when its object has earned opprobrium.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:15 AM
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180: Of course Bush is a human being. That was a pre-condition for his taking office.

He is a human being who deserves to be treated with all the respect he deserves: which is to say, booed at every opportunity till the day he's extradited to face trial at the Hague. And then boo him as he walks to the plane in handcuffs.


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:16 AM
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Screw heads of state.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:16 AM
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Oh, I absolutely think Bush should be tried for his crimes. (Which won't happen.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:18 AM
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Screw human beings, too. Charlie Manson is a human being.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:18 AM
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There are lots of bad people in the world. Should we be rude to all of them?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:19 AM
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What's this "he's still a human being" business? Humans get booed—it's untouchable monarchs who don't.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:20 AM
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This properly belongs on the inauguration thread, but while you're all here . . .

The intertubes collective came up with an inaugural speech for Obama. Much of the content isn't original -- it borrows from Wilson, Eisenhower, and a former Obama speech. Some clear missteps, but it's not bad. (Having a specific reference to abortion hits the wrong note, I think, and using "long march" is ill advised.)

Here's a nice bit; no idea if it's borrowed from another speech:

This is not an oath I can fulfill by myself. In this country we elect leaders not to rule, but to serve. But we must all serve. Let us move forward together. Let us become a better nation.

Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:21 AM
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There are lots of bad people in the world.

But very few responsible for six-figure body counts.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:21 AM
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You don't boo a head of state. This has nothing to do with an absence of personal dislike and everything to do with simple self respect

Fixed. Quite apart from anything, very hard to see how the United States of America would ever have got off the ground if people had taken this attitude. Tom Paine would have been pulling his fucking hair out.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:21 AM
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181: I would argue that booing is generally accepted in sports/entertainment contexts, and is generally inappropriate otherwise.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:22 AM
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If civility is mandated in order to cover the fact that a person is a really bad person, then yes, that civility is a bad thing. I'm not clapping when the APPLAUSE sign goes on. This is America, not Regency England!


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:23 AM
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Rude to Charlie Manson? In theory, yes. In practice, that might have been Sharon Tate's mistake.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:23 AM
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190: If there's good reason to, like communicating the state of public opinion, sure. Rudeness isn't a matter of right and wrong, except insofar as it does emotional injury to people. In Bush's case, I think the morals of the situation are such that I'm not worrying about his hurt feelings, at which point whether or not to be rude is a purely pragmatic matter.

And I think it was booing him was an excellent thing to do under these circumstances.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:23 AM
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booing is generally accepted in sports/entertainment contexts

But I'm entertained by Bush getting booed.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:24 AM
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199: The greatest good!


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:26 AM
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Are you asking if I would shake Mugabe's hand, Apo? If so, of course I would. There is no hand I would not shake.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:27 AM
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There is no hand I would not shake.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:28 AM
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201 to 184. Sorry to skip around.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:29 AM
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Seriously, this is a very worrying aspect of modern political culture. Do you really have so little respect for yourself and for ordinary citizens that you don't feel you have the right to express your opinion of a Head of State when he gets up on a platform? What kind of respect do you think George W Bush has for you?


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:29 AM
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In Bush's case, I think the morals of the situation are such that I'm not worrying about his hurt feelings

That's right. I don't think the relationship transaction allows for hurt feelings. It's business, not personal, in that sense. I do not think the point of booing is to make him feel real bad, I think the point of booing is to register en masse and on the record extreme disapproval. I'm not even sure I would personally boo (I might stand clucking with Becks about it in fact) but I would not disapprove others for booing any more than I would disapprove if he were hit with a pie.

The honor the office deserves was besmirched by this man. Booing him is a way to record for the record that he dishonored the office.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:29 AM
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I think that heads of state should all be held suspect. Some of the cuddly little states like Canada and Sweden do very little harm, but states are brutal and bloodthirsty by nature.

Two heads of state whose heads were treated appropriately were Louis XVI and Charles I.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:29 AM
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206: Perhaps Oliver Cromwell was eventually taken too far, though.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:31 AM
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Screw human beings, too. Charlie Manson is a human being.

Whoa, hey, let's not get out of line here. Manson killed as many with his own hands as Bush did; Manson ordered the killing of far fewer.

OTOH, I'm not sure Bush has done anything as bad as "Cease to Exist."


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:31 AM
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201: See, that's a non-standard interpretation of the requirements of politeness. Shaking someone's hand is a recognition that they are a respectable fellow human being, and most people recognize that it's possible to forfeit your right to interpersonal respect.

Not Mugabe. Say you're walking with your toddler, and I walk up to you and smack him, hard enough to make him cry. And then I greet you and hold out my hand to shake. Are you going to shake my hand? And if you aren't, why not -- did smacking your son make me a worse person than Mugabe?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:31 AM
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Some of the cuddly little states like Canada and Sweden do very little harm

oooh, perspective of history! The Swedes were right bastards for most of the period between 1520 and the mid 18th century, even if you spot them the record of the Vikings. And as for Canada, if you take the ratio of (people actually harmed by the Canadian state)/(people who the Canadian state has ever realistically been in a position to harm), they're probably right up there with the rest.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:33 AM
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I think that if you tot up the rat orgasms over the whole util-experiencing population, on the net booing Bush was a far better thing to do than not booing him would have been.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:34 AM
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The papist victims of the Swedes had it coming to them, Dsquared. Too bad about the bystanders, though.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:35 AM
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IIRC the constitutionality of appointing a VP was quite questionable, but no one had the nerve to challenge it.

No, the 25th Amendment, ratified 1967: "Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress."


Posted by: potchkeh | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:36 AM
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212 holds for nearly any value of [negative thing] done to Bush.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:36 AM
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Manson ordered the killing of far fewer.

I'm pretty sure Bush topped Manson's count in each one of his years as governor of Texas.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:36 AM
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207: Disinterring Bush at some later date and beheading him then would be the last choice, but whateve works.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:37 AM
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Presumably, this would only come from our first atheist president

Does Deism count? If so we've already had Jefferson and possibly Washington.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:38 AM
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There is no hand I would not shake.

This seems a bizarre position to me.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:38 AM
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Further to LB's 209, I can see some justification for shaking a head of state's hand because he has been invested with the authority by your fellow citizens and insofar as he stands for your peers and insofar as you respect your peers, you wish to show him respect. But in what sense is Robert Mugabe then a head of state? Just because he says so?


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:38 AM
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I think all of this heckling of Becks' post is inappropriate and disrespectful. The reason I don't boo Becks isn't because I think her post deserves more respect, but because the great institution of Unfogged deserves respect.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:40 AM
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I do not respect my peers.

Tough shit, peers. Sucks to be you.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:40 AM
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Also, I'd like to side with the shoe throwers. Booing and singing trivializes things. Shoe throwing shows just the right amount of contempt.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:40 AM
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MY SILENCE IN THIS THREAD SHOULD HAVE SPOKEN VOLUMES


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDMA | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:41 AM
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I walk up to you and smack him, hard enough to make him cry

You've left out an important bit of information here: whether he had it coming.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:42 AM
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There is no hand I would not shake.

Brock is laying a Godwin trap here.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:42 AM
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Disinterring Bush at some later date and beheading him then would be the last choice, but whateve works.

But displaying the head on the white house lawn wouldn't really fly these days, I think.

you wish to show him respect.

Or rather, you wish to show the office respect, and sometimes you cannot separate the two, practically.

As of 12am Tuesday though, Bush no longer held that office[*], which simplifies things.

[*] and there was much rejoicing.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:43 AM
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But in what sense is Robert Mugabe then a head of state?

in the sense that they had an election and he won. The election wasn't particularly free and fair, but even the MDC count had him getting about 45% of the vote. The myth of a) Zimbabwe as a simple dictatorship and b) Mugabe as a despot with no popular support at all is one of the things which causes British (and thereby USian, who seem to more or less outsource this one to the UK press) people to constantly screw up their analysis of what's going on there. The main reason why there's no worldwide support for sanctions or military intervention in Zim is that the MDC, which is the only legitimate popular opposition movement, hasn't asked for them.

In other words; Mugabe almost certainly still has a higher public approval rating in Zimbabwe than Bush had for the majority of his second term in the USA.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:43 AM
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Really, I wouldn't shake the hand of anyone connected with the Bush White House or most of the media. It's pretty theoretical, because I've lived my life in such a way as to not have to worry about meeting people of that kind, but I would feel a degree of real horror if I happened to be introduced to one of them.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:43 AM
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Shoe throwing shows just the right amount of contempt.

The weakness of procedural liberalism, exposed yet again. *Javelin* throwing shows just the right amount of contempt.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:45 AM
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209: that's a weird hypothetical, LB, so it's a little hard to gauge how I'd react. I'd probably first try to comfort the toddler. After that, if you were still hanging around waiting to greet me, I'd hope that I would shake your hand before moving on to the "why did you smack my toddler?" talk. If I couldn't bring myself to do that (let's say you killed my toddler, rather than smacking him), I'd count that as a personal fault.

Look, I certainly understand why people booed him (or would refuse to shake his hand, whatever); it's a very natural response. You despise him, and are enraged by him. Some people probably felt they had to boo to keep themselves from throwing shoes. But that doesn't mean make booing a proper response, much less one to celebrate. It's giving in to baseness.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:45 AM
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My argument against booing is that it is a clearly *inadequate* response to Bush's deeds.


Posted by: Barbar | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:46 AM
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201: That's troubling, Brock. Is there really no hand you wouldn't shake? Mengele's after he'd finished sewing a pair of twins together? Someone whose hand was dripping with blood after having hacked off the limbs of a neighbor in Rwanda? That seems to me to be a claim not to civility but to moral cowardice.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:46 AM
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I may be somewhat atypical. I'd also feel creeped out by at least half the Democrats in Congress. The State means something different to me than to Brock.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:47 AM
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I agree with 228. I was wandering around downtown in Oct. 2006 and I saw Melissa Hart wandering around too, shaking people's hands. If she'd come up to me, I would have reacted like LuAnn Van Houten did when Kirk Van Houten asked her to rethink the divorce. Instinctively, almost.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:47 AM
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If I couldn't bring myself to do that (let's say you killed my toddler, rather than smacking him), I'd count that as a personal fault.

This is an idiosyncratic interpretation of the duties of politeness; while behaving according to your own rules here probably makes you very easy to interact with, I've never encountered anyone else, in person or otherwise, who shared those rules.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:48 AM
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One of the big things in the minds of a lot of conservative leaders is the desire to have all the trappings of respectability and respect without earning them. Lots of hurt little inner boys there (and some hurt inner girls too, I guess). It's very important to them that they be deferred to, and that they be free to scorn and denigrate others--cf. Bush's cruel nicknames, Cheney's "fuck you" and later comments, etc ad nauseum. It is, precisely for that reason, very important not to grant them any such respect. I think that they're quite happy being feared and loathed, but being scorned, ridiculed, and held in simple contempt hits them hard.


Posted by: Paige Morrow | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:48 AM
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I wouldn't hug Bush (or Mugabe), if that helps clarify my position.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:49 AM
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Jesus, Brock, handshaking is sacramental to you.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:49 AM
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And Melissa Hart is a mere cog or factotum. What if it was Santorum? Oh my god, I would just watch whatever he did with horrified fascination, as if he was a vampire.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:49 AM
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Melissa Hart

I'd never heard of this woman previously, and thought, "That chick from 'Sabrina The Teenaged Witch'?" Damn, you *are* curmudgeonly.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:52 AM
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This is an idiosyncratic interpretation of the duties of politeness

Indeed.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:54 AM
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235: I suspect you have and just didn't realize it. (How often do you have this conversation?) I'm sure I'm not alone.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:55 AM
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It is perfectly proper to refuse to shake someone's hand. It is the correct, the convenient, and the very efficient means of expressing contempt in the case that someone has committed an unforgivable offense.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:57 AM
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"in the event that," I meant to say.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:58 AM
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Interestingly, a professional acquaintance of mine was in a position pretty damn similar to being asked to shake the hand of Robert Mugabe. He participated in a academic seminar which also included Henry Kissinger.

My colleague told me he had trouble figuring out how to interact with a war criminal. In the end, he decided just to listen, so see what the man was like.

In accordance with Paige's 236, Kissinger was enormously concerned that people treat him with respect and cared most deeply about his reputation.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:59 AM
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242: Is this part of being a Christian for you?
(shake hands with everyone being your way of loving thy enemy and turning the other cheek)


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 9:59 AM
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I was actually kind of curious about the repeated references to the peaceful transfer of power. Is that normal for U.S. presidential inauguration ceremonies? I don't know, this is the first one I've seen. If it is normal, then yeah, it's stupid. It's annoying but harmless and pointless except to the extent that is reinforces American exceptionalism. But if it's not normal, then it would be hard not to read it as criticism of Bush.

Also, I'm jumping on the anti-civility bandwagon too. I can understand and accept the sentiment that booing during the inauguration ceremony was inappropriate because it's disrespectful to America, but not any actual argument for that position. Sure, I felt a tiny bit guilty to be booing a solemn, important ceremony, and maybe someone else with a different life would have felt a lot more guilty, but for me that was just vestigial inculcation to be respectful of authority and stuff. I got over it.

Rationally, the head of state is just another government job and Bush made a horrible mess of things. Booing is obviously not sufficient punishment, but there's no reason to think it'll make the real thing any more or less likely than it already is. And it's the closest chance most of the people in the crowd will have to personally voice their sentiment, so why not take it?


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:00 AM
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242: Is this part of being a Christian for you?
(shaking hands with everyone being your way of loving thy enemy and turning the other cheek)


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:00 AM
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246 & 248: Sorry for the repetition and anonymity. That was me.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:02 AM
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I think the focus on handshaking is distracting, since it seems to mean different things to different people here. (To me it doesn't mean anything about the respectability of the other, but about the common bond of their shared humanity.)

Would you go out of your way to bring Bush water to drink, if he were dying of thirst? It's obviously a more ridiculous hypothetical, but it's closer to what I'm getting at.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:04 AM
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Bush being snubbed at G20.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:05 AM
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I don't think a commitment to nonviolence requires you to shake everyone's hand. It requires you to be open and loving to everyone, but it doesn't lock you in to any one mode of expressing this.

A duty to the truth is also a part of nonviolence. Gandhi's word for nonviolence was satyagraha--holding fast to the truth. When confronting wrongdoers, nonviolence requires you to be open with them, but also truthful about what you know they have done.

None of this is compatible with shoe throwing contempt, but here my nonviolence gives way to utilitarianism. A show of contempt will be very effective here.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:06 AM
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Would you go out of your way to bring Bush water to drink, if he were dying of thirst?

Yes, but I don't know whether I could resist the urge to spit in it.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:07 AM
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250: I'm sure I speak for many in saying that I wouldn't piss on him if he was on fire.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:07 AM
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A couple St. Patricks Days ago, right after she lost her seat, I was at this schmancy party thrown by lawyers, and Hart was there. I considered it the very height of politeness that I didn't mock her to her face. I may have giggled as I walked past.

But she had been defeated for over 4 months at that point, which made it easier.

Santorum, I think I would feel obliged to talk to. In an era of exceedingly bad people in power, he stood out.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:09 AM
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246/248/249: I don't know. I don't think it's entirely "part of" or entirely separate. They're certainly compatible values, in my mind.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:10 AM
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254: The phrasing of that I generally prefer is that "If he was on fire, it's the only day of my life I wouldn't piss/spit[if my parents are in the room] in him."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:11 AM
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To me it doesn't mean anything about the respectability of the other, but about the common bond of their shared humanity

In this particular I find you unusual, as LB did.

There are many things I would not like to see happen to Bush Jr. simply because I would not like to see them happen to any human being.

Not being afforded social niceties after having behaved contemptibly isn't one of them.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:12 AM
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Would you go out of your way to bring Bush water to drink, if he were dying of thirst?

But more seriously, sure. The obligation to help a fellow person is different from the obligation to show them ceremonial respect.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:12 AM
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it's the only day of my life I wouldn't piss/spit[if my parents are in the room] in him

Kinky!


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:13 AM
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And mechanically difficult without the use of a funnel.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:16 AM
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90, 254:

OK, just to be clear:

OK to piss on the likes of Thatcher & Bush:
- in grave

Not OK to piss on like of Thatcher & Bush:
- on fire

Others? I'd like to be prepared should the occasion arise.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:16 AM
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Jellyfish sting? Isn't piss supposed to counteract the effects? (Haven't done this, but I believe I've seen it suggested.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:17 AM
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246/248/249: I don't know. I don't think it's entirely "part of" or entirely separate. They're certainly compatible values, in my mind.

Maybe it's responsible for your feeling that shaking hands is centrally about acknowledging someone's humanity, though, via the "Peace be with you" part of the mass?


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:17 AM
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Not OK if they'd enjoy it.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:17 AM
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Ah, I see that LB already extended the list.

Would you piss on him if he were dying of thirst? They say it's abiotic.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:18 AM
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264 seems possible. I'd have to think about it.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:19 AM
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As far as Democrats go, my own Congressman is a Blue Dog and the active Democrats I know in this area can't stand him. He's impossible to reach and ignored the local party organizations. So I'd be willing to shake his hand, but only in order to tell him off.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:20 AM
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Ooh, 263 & 265 are good.

OK to piss on the likes of Thatcher & Bush when they are:
- in grave
- not yet in grave

Not OK to piss on like of Thatcher & Bush when they are:
- on fire
- jellyfish-stung
- kinky


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:20 AM
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Normal urine is sterile but too salty to do any good, like sea water.

I think.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:21 AM
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Any time after noon January 20 2019, I will take Bush's hand - in a very firm grip.

Then I will yank his arm up behind his back, breathe into his ear "Citizen's arrest, chummy, you're nicked" and march him to the nearest foreign consulate where he can be charged with the crimes he has committed for which the US government has inexplicably omitted to prosecute him.


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:28 AM
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To expand on 267, there's certainly no one's hand I'd refuse to shake if they were standing next to me at mass. And in some sense I think I'm just extending that idea to the streets. On the other hand, I think I felt roughly the same way (though perhaps not nearly as adamantly) before I became Catholic, which makes me think this isn't a complete explanation. Which is why I said I'd have to think about it.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:30 AM
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Handshaking is turning into a metaphor for something like general inter-human respect, and metaphors are banned for a reason. The actual decision to shake someone's hand is based in part on respect but also also in part on pragmatism. I mean, I'm more likely to shake Charles Manson's hand than Bush's if I somehow was introduced to either of them at a party. That's not because I think Manson is a better person than Bush, it's because I think Manson is more likely to respond violently to an insult. Likewise, I'm more likely to shake Bush's hand in a crowd of wingnuts than in a crowd of normal people.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:30 AM
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271
Any time after noon January 20 2019, I will take Bush's hand - in a very firm grip.

Is that when Secret Service protection expires? I thought it was lifelong.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:32 AM
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Brock is just became a Catholic for the handshaking.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:33 AM
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Is that when Secret Service protection expires? I thought it was lifelong.

They changed it (relatively) recently. Not sure if it was done specifically to screw Clinton, but it wouldn't be surprising, would it?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:34 AM
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I saw Newt when I was in DC and didn't walk up and call him a dickhead. Clearly I am far, far on the overpolite end of the spectrum.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:35 AM
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I wouldn't boo Mugabe, I don't think, but Bush was MY president, accountable, at least theoretically to the People of whom I am one. May the elected leaders retain a little fear and respect of the masses, by God!


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:36 AM
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272: I'd be interested, while you're thinking about it, if you've got anything that falls into the 'conventional gesture of respect that it's appropriate to withhold from the not-respectable' category. That's where I put handshaking, but there's nothing special about handshaking; is there something that fills that niche for you, or does something feel wrong about having a conventionalized means of indicating lack of respect at all?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:37 AM
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I saw Newt when I was in DC and didn't walk up and call him a dickhead.

Hey! You call my boy a dickhead and I am definitely, but definitely not shaking your hand.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:38 AM
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How lovely to think it matters what kind of protest is directed at the departing W. His administration, his very existence, has communicated no message more strongly than "Who cares what you think?". Even the shoes didn't get the message across.

I'm wondering whether Roberts' flubs indicate some kind of bad conscience.

Maybe having to say 'Hussein" just freaked him out.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:39 AM
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There are lots of bad people in the world. Should we be rude to all of them?

I try. [sigh]

I was tempted to drive into someone's car today because they were parked in a really stupid and inconvenient (and disallowed) place. (My car is a shitheap, so it wouldn't bother me.) I'd love the opportunity to dent Bush's or Thatcher's cars.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:40 AM
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Maybe having to say 'Hussein" just freaked him out.

Maybe he's just not very good at what he does.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:40 AM
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280: bad Newt, LB. It was bad Newt, not your Newt.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:43 AM
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284: Perhaps large Newt/small Newt distinction


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:45 AM
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Yeah, has LB ever explained why she named her son after that awful man?

Presumably an overabundance of respect for the office of Speaker of the House.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:45 AM
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I'm still kind of annoyed, in a nerdy sort of way, that during that short period in the 90's when bad Newt seemed to be running everything that he didn't blow the whole federal budget on building orbiting space habitats or manned missions to Mars. Not that those would have been a good idea, but I would have thought they were really cool, and being able to enjoy them without taking responsibility for advocating wasting money like that would have been great.

Republicans. They can't even screw up in a fun way.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:47 AM
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Yeah, has LB ever explained why she named her son after that awful man?

Lizard, Sally[mander], Newt. There's a little reptile/amphibian confusion going on, but that was the thinking. If I had a third child, I'd be calling them Eft online.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:49 AM
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||
Update: he's given them one year to close it. Too long, IMHO, but beggars can't be choosers.
|>


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:51 AM
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Eh. Gitmo is unimportant in itself -- it's what happens to the prisoners. The only thing that made Gitmo specifically a big deal was the legal argument that being held outside the borders of the US deprived prisoners of their constitutional rights; if they're not continuing to make that argument, the location in which prisoners are held doesn't matter. (Letting them go matters, but where they are before they're let go doesn't.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:53 AM
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I saw Newt when I was in DC and didn't walk up and call him a dickhead.

Weren't you one of the people advocating the cut direct?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:57 AM
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274 - Bill and Hillary Clinton get Secret Service protection lifelong. All Presidents elected or appointed after 1997 get a 10-year limit.

So, 12:05 January 20 2019... we can all go Bushwhacking!


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:57 AM
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Which salamander does "Buck" represent? the Seepage Salamander? the Jollyville Plateau Salamander? the Blackwarrior Waterdog?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:57 AM
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get Secret Service protection lifelong

This never made a lot of sense to me.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:59 AM
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293: Don't pick at the metaphor. It leaves a nasty scab.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:59 AM
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I'm just saying, change his name to "Blackwarrior Waterdog" and the discrepancies will be resolved.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:00 AM
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Caecilids are the coolest crawly thing. Legless amphibians, sometimes called slow-worms.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:06 AM
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This never made a lot of sense to me.

Is it so unreasonable to think that having being President sets you at increased risk of being attacked? I would imagine that, failing a Secret Service detail, ex-Presidents would probably hire bodyguards. The pension isn't that good.*

* Most ex-Pres end up pretty well-off, but that's a choice - I don't think Carter has much money.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:10 AM
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291: eh?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:11 AM
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sometimes called slow-worms

They really get a lot of shit from annelids.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:11 AM
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299: I think ben was suggesting you should have circumcised him on the spot, but I'm not sure.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:12 AM
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Is it so unreasonable to think that having being President sets you at increased risk of being attacked?

Perhaps, but decreasingly so over time I'd expect.

A fixed term makes sense, as does protection at certain events.

Lifelong S.S. protection seems overkill, is all.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:14 AM
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On the topic of showing respect to presidents, Ron Howard doesn't do himself any favors by being a Nixon apologist:

"I remember watching the interviews. Being a president is an impossible job - it's naive to think someone can do the job and not bend the law here and there."

I'm feeling quite justified in my opinion of Frost/Nixon about now.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:15 AM
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I think lifelong SS protection is absolutely necessary. I'm not sure how one would even argue against it.

Now, in Bush's case, a very secure protection detail would be appropriate. One with bars and concrete and very little sunlight, and regular patrols. Maybe the Hague could set something up for him.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:20 AM
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The pagan Turks strangled their outgoing leaders. They had a limited term in office, but didn't always live to see the end of it. Think outside the box.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:21 AM
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303: Zowie. What a tool.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:33 AM
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It's one of those self-defeating / self-fulfilling prophecies. While it may be realistically and historically true that all executive leaders bend or break the law here and there, once you explicitly advocate it in principle, you get enough bending and breaking to achieve nullification via slippery slope. It's important not to think clearly about such things. Fuzzy is good.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:39 AM
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I think lifelong SS protection is absolutely necessary.

Depends on which SS.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:44 AM
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Isnt it amazing how the same people whose fantasy is always about benevolent dictators are the same people who thrash about so wildly about the government staying out of their lives?

They arent the ones being affected. Only those other people. Unless we are talking money...


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:45 AM
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279: applause? I definitely think it was appropriate not to applaud for Bush.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:46 AM
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Huh. But I meet people I regard as worthy of my respect all the time, but don't applaud them. Withholding praise is one thing, but is there any gesture you'd make to indicate that anyone (doesn't have to be Bush particularly) was someone you considered below the baseline of respect you'd accord to a perfect stranger.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:50 AM
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Depends on which SS.

True. Fat lot of good it did Hitler.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:51 AM
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a gesture I would amke or a gesture I would withhold?

(the answer might be no in either case, but I'm probably just not thinking carefully about this. it might help to have a list of some of the sort of gestures under discussion.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:53 AM
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313: Handshaking is one. Something that doesn't seem to come up much anymore, so I'm familiar with it from literature more than anything else, would be refusing to accept someone's food or drink -- if you were in Hitler's house on business, and he offered you a cup of coffee, would you drink it? Conversational pleasantries like "Pleased to meet you"?

Everything I'm coming up with is a 'withhold' -- I can't think of any active gestures, except that withholding normal social attentions looks pretty active.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:57 AM
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I don't think Carter has much money.

Carter was pretty wealthy from peanut farming before he embarked on his political career, and has written a few best sellers, hasn't he?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:01 PM
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If I was in Hitler's house on business? I'm not sure I'd transact business with Hitler. (And not just because he's dead; feel free to replace Hitler with Bush, Mugabee, etc.) I don't think I'd share a meal with him, no. And I certainly wouldn't say "pleased to meet you", unless it thoughtlessly slipped out. I'd probably have the urge to correct myself if it did thoughtlessly slip out.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:03 PM
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Wait, ramifications of politeness? How about props to the people who threw shoes at the white house on Sunday? I was glad to read that the al-Zeidi's doing OK.

Isn't the real question regarding power for mid-level people the level of acceptable co-opting? Most people's professional roles essentially pick a side in any given conflict for them-- prosecutors prosecute, programmers program, administrative people assist. How many drops of ink does it take to say "this water's dirty" is the real question, isn't it? Mark Klein, the AT&T whistleblower-- how many people would have had the spine to do that? Fantasizing about a perceptible but irrelevant social gesture seems like less fun than actually throwing a shoe onto the bastard's lawn.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:09 PM
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Carter was pretty wealthy from peanut farming before he embarked on his political career, and has written a few best sellers, hasn't he?

Semi-seriously, I bet he lost a lot of wealth from the inflation during his term. Anyway, I don't think his bestsellers are big money-makers - they're dry, they go up the lists, and come right back down. I doubt he gets million dollar advances for them.

Maybe I'm wrong; I'd just be pretty surprised if books about how Israel needs to fuck off are highly remunerative (in the general US bookmarket, anyway; they're obviously pretty big in other segments).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:12 PM
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"If I was in Hitler's house on business"?

And they say that philosophers come up with crazy hypotheticals.

Suppose your girlfriend and Hitler's girlfriend were best friends, but you and Hitler don't get along, and you have to go to a party at Hitler's house in order to avoid a fight with your girlfriend. Would you eat the finger sandwiches?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:12 PM
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Fantasizing about a perceptible but irrelevant social gesture seems like less fun than actually throwing a shoe onto the bastard's lawn.

In fairness, a lot of things are less fun than throwing shoes at Bush's WH (although some of the ones that aren't are, indeed, the subject of my fantasies).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:14 PM
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"I'm sorry, Mr. Hitler, I'm a vegan, and those sandwiches are only vegetarian."


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:15 PM
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319: "Sure, she admits he's kind of a dick at work, but he's really sweet to her."


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:15 PM
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Ooo, thanks for the update on Al-Zeidi. I'd been vaguely worried about him.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:19 PM
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Would you eat the finger sandwiches?

I wouldn't eat anyone's finger sandwiches. That's horrible.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:24 PM
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BOOOOOOOOOO.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:24 PM
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(I admit that I have enough middle-class inhibition that I probably wouldn't have booed myself and would have felt a little squeamish about it if I were there. But it's a good thing, methinks, that most of the people attending were less uptight.)


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:29 PM
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325: Is that addressed at Bush, the original post, the whole thread, Unfogged as a whole, or 324?



Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:32 PM
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All I can say is ... wtf.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:35 PM
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I don't think I can say 'wtf'. I just tried, and it didn't really work -- I ended up with sort of a voiceless spitting sound.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:36 PM
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re: 329

A few months of phonetics training and then some Czech language lessons will sort that right out ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:39 PM
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329: Don't listen to ttaM. It's a Welsh word originally, and pronounced "oo-TEEF."


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:43 PM
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I wouldn't eat anyone's finger sandwiches. That's horrible.

I refuse to eat ladyfingers. Because I'm a feminist.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:43 PM
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||
Why can't I just turn off Talk of the Nation as soon as it comes on? Perverse fascination, probably, like the kind that makes otherwise reasonable people read wingnut blogs. Yesterday they had Jonah Goldberg and Amity Shlaes; today, Douglas Feith. FFS. They should rename it Talk with Tools.
|>


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:50 PM
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I would totally stinkpalm Hitler.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:52 PM
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Hasn't Carter donated the proceeds from his books? I thought I read that.


Posted by: TJ | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:53 PM
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Hasn't Carter donated the proceeds from his books?

Not all of them, apparently.

You've written 23 books since you left the White House. What compels you to write so much?

Well, I write for a living. This is my family's main source of income.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:56 PM
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Wrong link. Should be this.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 12:56 PM
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||

Looks like KBR won't skate in the electrocution of a Green Beret in Iraq.

|>


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 1:35 PM
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338: KBR will skate. A couple of its employees will not.

In a sensible world, or at least a less fucked up one, we would have the corporate death penalty. We already have personhood for these fictional things, might as well treat them the same way we do actual flesh and blood humans. I envision the corporate death penalty as involving the shutting down of the corporation, seizure of all its assets, and public flogging of senior management and the board. If there were real consequences (as opposed to mere inconvenience) for the people who created the environment that lead to the KBR employees believing it was OK to do shitty work, they wouldn't do it.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 1:41 PM
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In about 1890 Ignatius Donnelly, speaking in opposition to the personhood which the courts had just granted to corporations, asked whether they would be allowed to marry and have children.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 1:44 PM
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I envision the corporate death penalty as involving the shutting down of the corporation, seizure of all its assets, and public flogging of senior management and the board

Why not? Of course, you just threw thousands of people out of work by seizing the assets, but what the hey. They shouldn't have been working there.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 1:56 PM
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341 is also an argument against doing anything potentially harmful to a corporation, as it might lead to the need to cut the workforce.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:01 PM
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Upon reflection a corporate death penalty that led to the sale of the assets would probably be beneficial. What if there were a time limit on the life of a corporation, say 100 years. Upon expiration, assets to be sold to the highest bidder, less a "death tax" to the government.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:05 PM
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Are we parenting Bush? He's a really bad man.

HE'S NOT A BAD MAN. HE JUST MADE BAD CHOICES.


Posted by: OPINIONATED SOCIAL WORKER | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:20 PM
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343 - interesting idea. Unfortunately the corporation in its current form is so deeply embedded in our society that it's impossible to substantially reform. Given my druthers I'd simply abolish it.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:24 PM
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Given my druthers I'd simply abolish it.

Giving up the limited liability of the shareholders would be a huge loss and shrink the economy substantially. Corporate reform is not impossible, just improbable.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:35 PM
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At least they cshould not eb allowed to marry or adopt. Can we at least get that much?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:37 PM
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Can I declare Citibank an enemy combatant?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:44 PM
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Well, corporations marry each other all the time, JE. Civil unions, but not marriage for them, like teh gays. Maybe you can be adopted by ADM, or 3M or some other midwestern giant.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 2:44 PM
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I'm OK with what corporations do in the privacy of their own homes and all, but really, do my children have to learn about it in school?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:01 PM
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If I met a corporation in their home, would I have to shake their hand?


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:30 PM
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#349: Well, corporations marry each other all the time, JE. Civil unions, but not marriage for them, like teh gays. Maybe you can be adopted by ADM, or 3M or some other midwestern giant.

That would be a great Onion headline... "Gay corporations denied right to merge"


Posted by: Gaijin Biker | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:35 PM
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311: is there any gesture you'd make to indicate that anyone (doesn't have to be Bush particularly) was someone you considered below the baseline of respect you'd accord to a perfect stranger.

Turning your back, perhaps.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 5:47 PM
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Somehow in a discussion of respect for George W. Bush, and the lack thereof, this video feels on-topic.

Should the State Department have behaved in a more subdued fashion, out of respect for the departed War Criminal In Chief?


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:23 PM
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What does Hillary want?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 7:34 PM
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Turns out she wants "robust diplomacy and effective development"

I get more optimistic all the time about regime change. It's not on camera here, but I'm pretty sure she was greeted with flowers and sweets.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 8:30 PM
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Black man upsets Karen Hughes.

There were a few sharp elbows that really rankled and I felt were not as magnanimous as the occasion called for," Karen Hughes, a longtime Bush confidante, said in an interview. "He really missed an opportunity to be as big as the occasion was and, frankly, as gracious as President Bush was as he left office."

Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 10:24 PM
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Ordinarily I'd think an outgoing president, even an unpopular one, even one from that other political party, should not be booed at the inaugural.

Bush has been an extraordinarily bad president. He has continuously shown contempt for the office, the constitution, the people, the nation. That makes a difference. Boo away.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:03 PM
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353: Turning your back, perhaps.

Gee, I always thought that the upraised middle finger (or the index finger and middle finger in a V for godless europeans) was the most excellent sign of disrespect.

"He really missed an opportunity to be as big as the occasion was and, frankly, as gracious as President Bush was as he left office."

Absolutely right. He should've done it the Bush way: a big, friendly greeting to all the loser Democrats out there, followed by trashing the preceding President by lying to the press about the transition. Because if you look in the dictionary under 'George Bush' there's a picture of a ginourmous asshole.

max
['Big man, huge anus!']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:04 PM
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Enormous, mendacious, disembodied anus (sing it!)


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:10 PM
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358 -- As indeed his senior people showed in the story linked in 357. Clueless and mean: winning combination.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:11 PM
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359: Gah, talk about missed opportunities. If only I'd thought of distributing placards across the Mall that would have shown an enormous hand flipping the bird to Bush's helicopter when people held them up. That would have been world-historically spectacular.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:29 PM
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I saw his helicopter take off, but didn't flip the bird (it occured to me) because I was surrounded by kids. Overpoliteness strikes again.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:32 PM
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The thing about a huge asshole is that it allows for the easy passage of shit. Really you want someone you hate to have a super tight asshole, so that they're in pain whenever they need to defecate.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-22-09 11:36 PM
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I envision the corporate death penalty as involving the shutting down of the corporation, seizure of all its assets, and public flogging of senior management and the board

Isn't the corporate death penalty just nationalisation? Or is that more like the corporate version of imprisonment?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 01-23-09 2:51 AM
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I'm OK with what corporations do in the privacy of their own homes and all, but really, do my children have to learn about it in school?

Word. They're not content to practice their perverted abominations in private. They want us to accept it as normal! They've got a political agenda, and when they know that our democratic institutions won't give them what they want, they rely on unelected activist judges to overrule the people.

And they try to recruit the young. Don't give me that "they're born that way" shit; if I had the urge to exploit Third World peasants or pour toxins in a river, I'd damn well choose to control it!


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 01-23-09 4:15 AM
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No more masturbating to extraordinary rendition.

"On this point, Obama is not only rolling back Bush's excesses, but Clinton's."


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-23-09 5:53 AM
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I'm frightened to think of Apo's extraordinary rendition masturbatory fantasies.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-23-09 6:21 AM
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All my masturbation is extraordinary.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-23-09 6:32 AM
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