Time's Joe Klein: That's it! I Can't Pretend Any Longer!

The magazine's world-weary political correspondent announces that Republican health care politics have pushed him off the ledge: He–nay, the Republic–just can't afford to be impartial anymore.

Given the heinous dust that's been raised, it seems likely that end-of-life counseling will be dropped from the health-reform legislation. But that's a small point, compared with the larger issue that has clouded this summer: How can you sustain a democracy if one of the two major political parties has been overrun by nihilists? And another question: How can you maintain the illusion of journalistic impartiality when one of the political parties has jumped the shark? (See pictures of angry health-care protesters.)

I'm not going to try.

So I guess we can no longer expect those hard-hitting analyses of the president?

Other Klein claims, now that he's finally taken off the gloves:

Hyperbole and distortion certainly exist on the left, but they are a minor chord in the Democratic Party. [...]

the Republicans are curling themselves into a tight, white, extremist bubble [...]

There was McCarthyism in the 1950s, the John Birch Society in the 1960s. But there was a difference in those times: the crazies were a faction — often a powerful faction — of the Republican Party, but they didn't run it. The neofascist Father Coughlin had a huge radio audience in the 1930s, but he didn't have the power to control and silence the elected leaders of the party that Limbaugh — who, if not the party's leader, is certainly the most powerful Republican extant — does now.

Funny, I thought the GOP was run not by a radio broadcaster–who, by the way, has had a long mutual hate society with the Republican who ran for president in 2008–nor by a "tight, white, extremist," but by this black guy? If the party–which, please don't get me wrong, I root against on a daily basis–is indeed in thrall to snarling, hysterical, neofascist analogs, why did the last squirt of electoral success by a white-resentment candidate come 13 years ago, with the four primary states won by Pitchfork Pat Buchanan?

I do not doubt that there is a kind of madness at the hardest core of the GOP (though, I guess unlike Klein, I think the same thing about all political parties), and the Republicans' history of stoking white/majoritarian fear and loathing soured me permanently on the party back during its alleged 1980s heyday. That such a high percentage of Republicans believe that Barack Obama was not born in the United States does not, alas, probably indicate a newfound skepticism of executive claims. And yes, the best one could say about the official GOP right now is that it's massively hypocritical, crying about the modern big government era it created, declaiming end-of-life government intervention just a few years after putting all of Capitol Hill in Terry Schiavo's hospital room. 

Still, if, as the growing media narrative contends, the Republicans have devolved into a rump party of half-sane white southerners wracked by racial anxiety, why does it keep rewarding anti-racist anti-populists at the top of its presidential ticket (including, notably, the ticket that ran against a liberal Democrat black candidate), while rejecting every dime-store Tancredo with prejudice? When does this allegedly mainstream Republican pathology begin showing up in the numbers, or in the personages of those who lead the party?

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  • ||

    What a whining, childish wimp.

  • ||

    why does it keep rewarding anti-racist anti-populists at the top of its presidential ticket (including, notably, the ticket that ran against a liberal Democrat black candidate),



    And the ticket that you wrote a book against, and that Reason still has an ad on the right side of the Hit & Run page about "Current Issue Available * Would a President McCain obey the law?"

    Not that your book was unreasonable. McCain is philosophically inconsistent and prone to grandiose moralizing politics and doubting the sincerity and motives of opponents. (Hey, just like the President now, and most others!) It can actually feel kind of nice when someone moralizes free trade or the need to end ag subsidies, as he does, but it's not productive or anything.

    Still, if Huckabee gets the nomination in 2012, I'm going to hold you partially responsible for it.

  • Tacos mmm...||

    What a whining, childish wimp.



    Hey now. Whining is a mainstay of libertarian political activity.

  • ||

    FrBunny's surprised face: :-|

  • Tomcat1066||

    "How can you maintain the illusion of journalistic impartiality when one of the political parties has jumped the shark?

    I'm not going to try. "

    In equally surprising news, the sky is blue!

  • ||

    Still, if, as the growing media narrative contends, the Republicans have devolved into a rump party of half-sane white southerners wracked by racial anxiety, why does it keep rewarding anti-racist anti-populists at the top of its presidential ticket (including, notably, the ticket that ran against a liberal Democrat black candidate), while rejecting every dime-store Tancredo with prejudice?



    McCain was the 2008 version of 2004 Kerry. Total defensive pick. (Romney would have also filled this role admirably.)

    "We don't trust ourselves. Please, please don't fuck up and get all Deany / Bushy."

  • ||

    I dunno, I'm having the same problem with the GOP. I talk to people, and they still want to talk about Slam Dunk WMDs, foreign born Barack Hussein Obama (not that race has anything to do with it!), and the indisputable fact that white-ass flyover country is the "real" America. Sure, Klein is over the top and a bit of a tool. But do you really think the Sarah Palin phenomenon is a Michael Steele-coordinated effort to increase GOP racial awareness? I can't stand people who sit back and call ever GOPer or conservative a racist. But I also think the GOP (the base, not the brass) is blowing a big time opportunity. And as for nominating McCain, I think they did that because he was electable. This is the same party that was smitten with George Allen before he got too jocular.

  • Xeones||

    Shut the fuck up, Joe Klein.

  • DJF||

    Joe Klein willing to be impartial as long as everyone agrees with him. Anyone who disagrees with Klein is obviously not only wrong but evil.

  • Anonymous||

    How can you sustain a democracy if one of the two major political parties has been overrun by nihilists?

    Why are all of the Left's most strong and articulate claims about Republicans only in evidence in Democrats?

    Nihilism, taken seriously as a foundation for policy making, seems to lead to the conception of power as an ends, which gives you strong central governments and totalitarianism disguised as egalitarianism (everybody gets cavity searches, you can't complain), while those in power fancy themselves enlightened beings capable of more than the suffering slobs who put them there.

  • ||

    The Republican Party is run by a black guy? Then why did righties make such a racist depiction of him?

    Oh, wait...

  • Anonymous||

    (not that race has anything to do with it!)

    The Left said using his middle name was racist because it highlighted his differences, which indicated their discomfort with it. Fuck yes, I'm going to use it any chance I get.

  • ||

    Ezra, Joe, and Naomi... Can the whole Klein family shut the fuck up?

  • ||

    I forgot Kevin. He can stfu too.

  • ||

    And Calvin, who looks like a withered lesbian.

  • ||

    How can you sustain a democracy if one of the two major political parties has been overrun by nihilists?

    Nihilists... Fuck me. I mean, say what you like about the tenets of National Socialism, at least it's an ethos.

  • Colin||

    Klein should start signing his columns as "Anonymous," as he did with his novel. He's become a joke, just like his magazine -- which is now in The Nation territory.

  • colin||

    I, for one, am stunned that any one gives a fuck what is written in Time magazine.

  • jtuf||

    def. Racist - One who dares to vote or speak against any bill indroduced by a Democrat.

  • Michael||

    Magazine editorials that utilize Internet colloquialisms (and woefully expired ones at that) just about make me cry blood.

  • PR||

    Why bring up Father Coughlin as an example of Republican extremism?

  • ||

    "The Left said using his middle name was racist because it highlighted his differences, which indicated their discomfort with it. Fuck yes, I'm going to use it any chance I get."

    If annoying the left is more important than building the party, then the GOP is in worse shape than I thought.

  • ||

    And Calvin, who looks like a withered lesbian.

    Don't be a bitch. Some of us like that look on a man.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    And another question: How can you maintain the illusion of journalistic impartiality when one of the political parties has jumped the shark?

    I'm not going to try.



    Joe Klein was trying at some point?

    Interesting that he said "illusion".

  • ||

    Hush, ben. He's botoxed himself into a mannequin.

  • Fluffy||

    I wondered where the "nihilists" slur was coming from, but his focus on the "death panels" claim makes it clear that he is arguing a variant of the Ezra Klein position:

    If you don't trust the government to run health care, you are a nihilist. Your lack of faith in the goodness of the state reveals that you utterly lack values and don't believe in the goodness of anything.

    That's literally his argument. Because Joe Klein is a piece of shit.

    This was his argument during the Bush administration, true. "Please, please, won't you just trust the Bush administration to use unaccountable power wisely? How can you not believe in the goodness of the Bush administration? You NIHILISTS!"

    And unaccountable power is what we are talking about here. Government boards that we do not have the right to directly vote for will determine what treatments your insurance company will and will not be allowed to offer coverage for. Their decisions will not be subject to judicial review, so they cannot be sued. If I can't vote it and I can't sue it, I don't trust you to do it. Period. To Joe Klein, this lack of trust makes me a "nihilist".

  • ||

    And cue the indignant defenses of the GOP.

  • Anonymous||

    Lamar, I don't know from GOP internals, and I don't speak for them or with them. I hope it withers so people start talking about Democrats like they're the only game in town. Then the blue dogs might wake up and take the FDR and JFK paintings off their living-room walls.

  • ||

    I'm starting to think that the God's Own Party faith fueled money train is going to roll on into town. Huckabee/Palin or maybe Barbour/ Huckabee in 2012. They are gonna swing hard right in response to the left trying to go hard left. The republicans are going to realize they started getting their asses handed to them when they eased up on the God rules.

  • TallDave||

    Klein has never tried very hard to be objective.

    My suggested new GOP motto:

    "The Republican Party: Now The Lesser Of Evils!"

  • Xeones||

    Shut the fuck up, Tony. You're out of your element.

  • ||

    X, intelligent conversation?

  • Alan Vanneman||

    The political migration of Joe Klein is quite intriguing. A couple of years ago he was huffing and puffing about those damn hippies on the Internet. Now he's turned into one. Josh Marshall/Kevin Drum/Matt Yglesias, move over!

  • TallDave||

    Oh, and apparently "nihilism" now means "against government control."

    I expect a series of articles from Time rebranding free markets as "nihilist dystopias" will follow.

    OTOH, I'm not sure how that would significantly differ from the magazines last twenty years.

  • Xeones||

    X, intelligent conversation?

    Rarely possible with one as willfully disingenuous as Tony. Christ, he still thinks this is a Republican forum.

  • ||

    Every liberal I know tells me that the Republicans are run by religious fundamentalist nutcases. Now they are nihilists? Joe Klein needs to shut the fuck up and any media outlet that publishes him needs to go out of business.

    Fluffy is exactly right. To call anyone who objects to the government taking over healthcare a nihilist is flat out Orwellian. Fuckheads like Klein and his partners in the MSM are quickly crossing the line from being annoying partisan hacks to being downright fucking dangerous. Think about what Klein is doing here. He is saying that the party that controls all the elected branches of government is not only right, but the only party that is not insane. And that he is going to use his power in the media to make sure everyone understands that. Klein is saying he is going to become a state propaganda organ with the soul purpose of marginalizing any dissent against the powers that be.

  • ||

    They old line media liberals like Klein are getting desperate. They used every once of credibility and integrity they had left with the country to sell Obama. If Obama crashes and burns, they crash and burn with him. The economy is not turning around. People are pissed about Obamacare. If the Dems shove an unpopular program down the country's throat, there will be blood bath in the 2010 elections. If they don't pass anything, the hardcore left will be devastated at losing their best and perhaps best chance to get socialized medicine. It is hard to see how this ends well for Obama and the clowns who sold him to the country. At some level I think people like Klein know that and are getting increasingly desperate. Thus, they are saying increasingly crazy things about the opposition.

  • ||

    disclaimer: I really liked today's friday funny.

    Obama campaign on fixing the economy, the environment, healthcare, race relations congress, society in general and the establishment of world peace. All great intentions. He was actually voted in due to the republicans getting bitch slapped.

    I am coming to the conclusion that he is in way over his head. The dissent we are seeing is from all the voters that were spanking the GOP having buyers remorse. I am having some of it myself. Obama, like Palin, was brought up to the big show too soon.

  • ||

    "How can you sustain a democracy if one of the two major political parties has been overrun by nihilists?"

    Funny, I asked the same question when so many of my friends responded to 9/11 by decrying America's wickedness, which had undoubtedly caused the "cycle of violence" which had led to the regrettable, but understandable, attack on our imperial asses. The idea that it might be a good idea to defend ourselves against religious troglodytes was simply beyond considering; every intelligent person knew the truth as passed down by St. Noam of Jersey.

  • Brett Stevens||

    Nihilist means "not believing in inherent value."

    Nietzsche and others use it to describe fatalists who, not believing in their own ability to make something good of the world, want handouts, pity and mass religion.

    While Nietzsche is correctly describing the left, who are basically a lynch mob of insane disillusioned underachievers, I like true nihilists, who tend to be right-wing (and not just economically, like Reason-ers).

  • TallDave||

    I learned something that startled me on Modern Marvels the other day. Did you know De Beers is a diamond cartel that operates a virtual monopoly on diamonds, and as such is actually barred from transacting business in the United States?

    As a libertarian, I was deeply offended, because this means nearly all diamonds are not being sold on a free market. Every time I see an advertisement for diamond jewelry I am reminded of this. I have resolved to never buy mined commercial diamonds again. Artificial diamonds cost a tenth as much and sparkle just the same -- without propping up an illegal and unethical monopoly.

    I bring this up because the only other time I feel this ideologically sickened and outraged is watching/reading MSM coverage of health care "reform."

  • ||

    Why do so many people of all persuasions hate so many of their fellow Americans? While I share this disdain for leftists who wish to tear down the institutions that have raised up people around the world, I accept confused liberals and I even appreciate the libertarian nuts who I disagree with on some issues. We can't all be just perfect little copies of our perceived right-thinking selves. Sometimes we are wrong on stuff or foolishly overreach. Without the "nuts" our little army of same thinkers would implode and die or produce an unspeakable horror of a world. This blindness is especially hypocritical of "libertarians". I think we need the Klein's and Palins, the gun nuts, the tree huggers, the vegitarian lesbian Indian activist and the black separatist. They all keep us from going too far.

    Wanting to shut these people down is just self destructive. This diversity of opinion is a sign of health. Any society without it is a sitting flightless bird for social evolution. This is what freedom and especially the cutting edge of it looks like. Fight for you ideas, but embrace the edge, it is messy and maybe you're not the genius you think.

  • ||

    John, I really think it will depend on whether the MSM can paint the right to look worse than the left. We do love the blame game in american politics.

  • Xeones||

    You're not wrong, brotherben. The Republicans totally deserved to lose in 2008, but the Democrats sure as hell didn't deserve to win. Fuck the two-party duopoly, yo.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Obama, like Palin, was brought up to the big show too soon.

    The Joe Nuxhall of presidents.

  • ||

    "I am coming to the conclusion that he is in way over his head. The dissent we are seeing is from all the voters that were spanking the GOP having buyers remorse. I am having some of it myself. Obama, like Palin, was brought up to the big show too soon."

    Like Palin, he was VP candidate. Someone the base likes. Someone who can give a good speech and go to funerals for four years. The idea that he was another Reagan or some kind of skilled exectutive experienced enough for the job was just bizzare.

  • ||

    "John, I really think it will depend on whether the MSM can paint the right to look worse than the left. We do love the blame game in american politics."


    They have been painting the right as crazy for fifty plus years now. At some point people just tune it out. Also, they are painting with such a broad brush. They are not just saying Republicans are crazy. They are saying anyone who disagrees with Obama is crazy. They are saying a majority of voters are crazy. That isn't going to work. Also, the over the top stuff that the media puts out about the Right works in the Right's favor sometime. The media builds up anyone from the right as being both a fundie moran and a crazy evil genius all in one. Then the guy gets up and gives a speech or has a debate and looks great because the bar has been set so low.

  • Matt Welch||

    The Joe Nuxhall of presidents.

    I think David Clyde is the correct comp.

  • ||

    "You're not wrong, brotherben. The Republicans totally deserved to lose in 2008, but the Democrats sure as hell didn't deserve to win. Fuck the two-party duopoly, yo."

    The funny thing is Xeneos is that all the Dems had to do to be a long term majority was not fuck up. They could have blamed the recession on Bush. The country desparately wanted a do nothing feel good Presidency. All BO had to do was show up and say a few things like Hope and Change and he was set. But, they couldn't help themselves. They had to go on a spending and socialized medicine bender and manage to fail to meet even the low bar that was set for them.

  • ||

    You don't have to love Dems to realize how seriously fucking insane the GOP has become.

  • Amber Waves||

    The line to shit in Joe Klein's mouth starts here.

  • ||

    Stop projecting Tony.

  • ||

    I think David Clyde is the correct comp.


    Buster Douglas comes to mind.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    John: more brevity, less whining. Please.

  • ||

    Fuck you AO. I am not whinning about anything. Klein is a piece of shit who has declared himself to be a propeganda tool for the government. If you don't like that fact being pointed out, too bad.

  • ed||

    He...just can't afford to be impartial anymore

    The impartiality train left the station years ago.

  • Anonymous||

    bagoh20,

    I don't think calling out Joe Klien as describing something imaginary for some ulterior motive puts anyone at risk of groupthink.

    But I like the way you put it: "embrace the abyss edge".

  • ||

    John, Obama didn't have it in him to sit back and enjoy the ride. He wants to fix what he sees wrong. Which is basically everything. I tend to see things the same way. The problem is that you are either successful and the greatest president ever or you go down in a massive ball of flaming fecal matter. There isn't much middle ground.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    The shittiness of Joe Klein is apparent. But so is your whining. "Oh, the media's been after the right for 50 years!" The media is statist; it kisses up to government, right or left.

    Like I said, more brevity, less whining, and less victimology.

  • ||

    Tall Dave,

    Diamonds are not a rare commodity. They are pretty common actually. They should not be anywhere near as expensive as they are. The only reason they are expensive is becaue DeBeers bought up the main sources of them and controls the world market. The term "evil" is thown around a bit to freely. But when you consider Debeers' business practices and their connection to Apartheid South Africa, they are as close to being an "evil" company as you can find.

  • mark||

    Shut the fuck up Tony.

  • Wicks Cherrycoke||

    I wonder if Klein includes in his list of far-right nut jobs that well-known "fascist," Nat Hentoff, who has just posted a column on the Cato Institute site expressing deep concern about Obama's rationing of care for older Americans. I wonder if Klein considers Hentoff, a long-time civil libertarian, another racist white guy.

    What truly bothers Klein and his fellow liberals is this: It took six years for the "idiot" Bush to have his administration implode. It took Obama, the "Smartest Man Ever Elected President," barely eight months.

  • Fluffy||

    The political migration of Joe Klein is quite intriguing. A couple of years ago he was huffing and puffing about those damn hippies on the Internet. Now he's turned into one. Josh Marshall/Kevin Drum/Matt Yglesias, move over!

    I will reiterate that he hasn't changed at all.

    The reason he was huffing and puffing about damn hippies on the internet is because those damn hippies wanted transparency, accountability and due process, and Klein wanted them to shut up and allow the Bush administration to do whatever it wanted without being questioned and doubted by the citizenry.

    All that has changed is the issue and the personalities at hand. Instead of the war on terror, the issue is now health care. Instead of dirty rotten hippies, the people who won't shut up and just follow are right-wing town hall protestors. It's all the same to Klein. Any resistance to the exercise of unaccountable state power is anathema to him. Klein hasn't changed at all; the conversation has just moved on.

  • ed||

    Klein is a piece of shit who has declared himself to be a propeganda tool

    Pssst! Hey John!

    http://www.spellchecker.net/spellcheck/

    You're welcome!

  • ||

    "Oh, the media's been after the right for 50 years!" The media is statist; it kisses up to government, right or left."

    Pay attention to history. The media has been portraying the right as crazy for decades. It started with Goldwater. In the 1964 campaign the media portrayed Goldwater as a derranged war monger beant on nuking Russia. Then came Reagan. Throughout the enitre 1980s the media portrayed Reagan as senile old man who was going to get us into World War III and who was intent on throwing old people into the street. If only Reagan had been the radical free market capitalist they all claimed he was. That is what the media does. Something like 90+% of working journalists are committed Dems. Those are just the facts. Every Republican is a crazy and every Dem is a moderate pragmatist.

  • ||

    I still can't find these Republicans who believe Barak wasn't born in Hawaii. I know they are on the net, but I mean face to face. I just travelled to Dallas to visit friends, and couldn't find anyone down there either.

  • Wicks Cherrycoke||

    The following was just posted by the Washington Post. What the Democrat name-calling machine really go into overdrive now.

    "Another poll out today is cause for concern for President Obama's health care agenda as he leaves for vacation first at Camp David, then Martha's Vineyard.

    In the Washington Post/ABC News survey, 49 percent of Americans say they believe Obama will be able to drive significant improvements in the health care system, down nearly 20 percentage points from before he took office.

    As Republicans and other critics continue to hammer his health care proposals, confidence in Obama's overall leadership is also eroding, according to the poll: 49 percent of respondents express confidence that he will make the right decisions for the country, down from 60 percent at the 100-day mark in his presidency.

    His overall job approval rating, 57 percent, is down 12 percentage points from its April peak, and his disapproval number has risen to 40 percent, its highest yet.

    The national survey was conducted Aug. 13-17 and has a sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

    An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released earlier this week suggested that Obama and Democrats had lost control of the health care message as many Americans believed what critics had been saying about the proposals."

  • ||

    plutosdad, my wife works with 3 lifelong republicans that are rabid birthers. Their favorite newscaster is that Hannity fella.

  • ||

    "I still can't find these Republicans who believe Barak wasn't born in Hawaii. I know they are on the net, but I mean face to face. I just travelled to Dallas to visit friends, and couldn't find anyone down there either."

    I can't find any either. Of course you can find similar polls where a large percentage of Dems say 9-11 was an inside job. Indeed, Howard Dean said that it was a plausible theory some people hold. Yet, the Republicans are totally discredited by the existence of birthers but the Democrats are untouched by the existence of Truthers.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    John, it would seem that no one is going to disabuse you of your Fantasy Victim World.

  • ||

    Face it John, The Big Media and Me, we hate us some republicans. When healthcare fails and the economy doesn't recover, we are fully prepared to continue blaming the worthless repubs for gumming up the works and standing in the way of progress for all americans!

  • ||

    Don't respond to anything substantive AO. Don't say "well yeah, they did kind of treat Goldwater unfairly, but" or admit that 90% of journalists vote Democratic and say but what about this or that. Nope, don't do any of that. Just throw out an insult because you have nothing else to say. If you want to talk about the subject of liberal bias, let's talk. But you don't seem to want to do that. All you want to do is pretend you are right and throw out insults. Why don't you just say you have nothing to say and leave it at that?

  • ||

    Ben,

    It is a fantasy world that the MSM ever was biased towards BO or in anyway biased towards the Democratic Left over the years. AO says so and that settles it.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    John, you have been going on for paragraphs and still have nothing to say.

    Let's see, within my recent memory, I remember:

    - Every lurid detail of Lewinsky, including the semi-pornographic Starr report, printed in fulsome detail, in every major newspaper in the United States.

    - I seem to remember a short Massachusetts Greek being roundly mocked for both Willie Horton and riding in a tank

    - Oh, I almost forgot: some in the media openly questioned whether Clinton was "wagging the dog"

    Should I go on?

  • The Angry Optimist||

    ah, and your whimpering little tirades prove that your "side" is just one, big misunderstood victim, eh?

  • ||

    "Every lurid detail of Lewinsky, including the semi-pornographic Starr report, printed in fulsome detail, in every major newspaper in the United States."

    When the President is getting blowjobs from a 20 something intern in the oval office they kind of have to cover it. At best that is an example of fair treatment. Do you honestly believe they wouldn't have covered it if Clinton had been a Republican? So it is no an example of a Democrat being treated differently from a Republican and does not counter act the examples I gave of Republicans being treated in ways Democrats would never be.

    "I seem to remember a short Massachusetts Greek being roundly mocked for both Willie Horton and riding in a tank"

    First Willie Horton was an Al Gore ad. Second, they never mocked him for that when it mattered during the election. They mocked him after he lost. The coverage of Dukakis was fawning during the conventions. But once again, at best that is an example of the media treating a Dem like they would a Republican. It is not an example of them treating a Dem worse. They would have made fun of a Republican who looked ridiculous in a tank.

    "Oh, I almost forgot: some in the media openly questioned whether Clinton was "wagging the dog"

    Who other than Rush Limbaugh ever claimed that? That was never reported as news. It was reported as a crazy theory Republicans were claiming.

    Nice try though. You are doing better. You at least tried to come up with some examples and arguments, even though they were kind of weak. But that is better than just throwing out an insult.

  • ||

    TAO - In right winger world, the media didn't treat Clinton unfairly because he was guilty as hell and deserves to burn in hell for eternity. As such, the media was too kind to Clinton.

  • ||

    "ah, and your whimpering little tirades prove that your "side" is just one, big misunderstood victim, eh?"


    Ah AO. That is so disappointing. I really thought you were getting a hang of this whole rational argument thing. I really did. Then you slip back into that. Stop hanging around with Tony.

  • ||

    Rev. Wright
    Rezko
    the hippy bomber dude
    "clinging to their guns and religion"
    proud to be an american for the first time


    yup, he got like a totally free skate dude

  • ||

    "-TAO - In right winger world, the media didn't treat Clinton unfairly because he was guilty as hell and deserves to burn in hell for eternity. As such, the media was too kind to Clinton."

    That is not what I am saying at all. They covered Clinton because they had to. It was too big of a story. They ignored it at first. But once the evidence started to mount they couldn't anymore. But it is not like they treated Clinton worse than they would have a Republican. They would have been all over a Republican. So the Lewinski example is at best an example of the media treating a Democrat like they would a Republican. That is why Leftists find it so appalling. They generally have no idea what real media scrutiny is like.

  • ||

    "When the President is getting blowjobs from a 20 something intern in the oval office they kind of have to cover it."

    Yup......guilty as hell, deserves to burn....etc. Yeah, we get it. There are a thousand little reasons why dubious coverage of left wingers is completely justified, but never will there ever be a reason to say anything bad about Republicans. Don't you see that your arguments as to why day after day of Lewinsky was good coverage is the same BS rationalization that left wingers do about dubious coverage of the right?

  • The Angry Optimist||

    First Willie Horton was an Al Gore ad.



    That is a full-throated lie. Al Gore never mentioned Willie Horton.

    Right, anyway, a few examples and you came up with excuses, lies and bullshit to "explain it all away". You know what you remind me of? Black race-hustlers, always blaming whitey. Or feminists blaming the 'patriarchy'. Well righty is always blaming the MSM.

  • Kent||

    TallDave,

    You don't know the half of DeBeers' shenanigans:

    http://mygeologypage.ucdavis.edu/cowen/~gel115/115CH15diamonds.html

    "A serious challenge faced De Beers early in the 20th century. The Germans discovered diamonds in sands along the coast of Namibia, then German Southwest Africa. Large quantities of diamonds began to appear on the market in Antwerp in 1908. In 1913 De Beers decided to find out for themselves how good the German fields were. An inspection party (including Ernest Oppenheimer) went to Namibia in 1914, and found that there was every prospect of high production. So in July 1914, the German and South African Governments, the South African diamond companies, the German selling agency, and members of the syndicate signed an agreement to divide up diamond production.

    "The outbreak of World War I just a few days later voided the agreement, and one of the first consequences of the war was the rapid entry of South Africa on the British side. The South African leaders probably saw the opportunity to seize the German diamond fields for South Africa. They were able to have the territory remain under South African "protection" after the war.

    "In 1919 the South African Government arranged a new producers' agreement, and a consortium including Ernest Oppenheimer took over the fields in Namibia. By 1926 Oppenheimer and his company Anglo American felt strong enough for a showdown with De Beers, and after negotiations each company took a large shareholding in the other, with Oppenheimer essentially running both."

  • ||

    "Rev. Wright
    Rezko
    the hippy bomber dude
    "clinging to their guns and religion"
    proud to be an american for the first time"

    They gave him a free pass on Wright. They let proclaimed his ridiculous Philadelphia speech saying that Wright was just like his grandmother to be the greatest speech since Lincoln's second inaugural. And then when Obama finally threw off Wright, pretended like the Philadelphia speech didn't happen.

    The gun clingers speech was a self inflicted wound. They couldn't ignore it. But the media did ignore things like Obama admitting to the SF Chronicle that cap and trade would necessarily raise energy costs. They never even asked the guy a hard question. It was so bad during the primaries; SNL did a skit about it.

    The media also buried the John Edwards love child story during the primaries. Had Edwards cratered earlier, Obama probably doesn't win some of the early caucuses. The media did everything it could to avoid going after Edwards. And it just happened to be the case that Edwards staying in the race helped Obama. And the media just happened to ignore a really great story about a really big politician doing so out of kindness I suppose.

  • nobody||

    The guy who founded De Beers named a country after himself. Seriously.

  • Kolohe||

    Came for the Lebowski references, leaving satisfied.

  • ||

    John, I think you are more paranoid than WhackAlone. no offense intended. just an observation.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    You know when the MSM is mean to Democrats, that is really just another way they enforce the mediarchy that oppresses Republicans!

    Crafty MSM! So pervasive, so insidious - their bias is omnipresent and permeates our existence!

    Republicans, throw off the MSM! You have nothing to lose but your chains!

  • wayne||

    " I seem to remember a short Massachusetts Greek being roundly mocked for both Willie Horton and riding in a tank..."

    The way I remember these events was the MSM decrying the, "racist hatchet job" those evil GOPers perpetrated, and the, "grade-school labeling" by those evil GOPers again.

    Not defending the GOP, but it IS clear that the MSM leans to the Dems, and has done so for my entire adult life.

  • ||

    Yes AO. Al Gore never mentioned Willie Horton. He just mentioned the furlough program that resulted in the murder of two people. But he didn't say Willie Horton by name during the debate. Yeah, that makes such a difference.

    Further, Willie Horton doesn't prove your point. The Willie Horton ad was completely condemed in the media. The media tried to portray George Bush as a racist for running it. That ad didn't get one piece of positive coverage and is to this day continually held up as an example of how horrible Republicans are. How is that an example of the media being biased towards Republicans?

  • Tim Cavanaugh||

    How can you sustain a democracy if one of the two major political parties has been overrun by nihilists?

    One of the many thing I've always hated about covering politics, and still hate about covering politics, is how self-dramatizing everybody is. Not just the politicians but the journalists. Especially the journalists. Stuff like Time during Bush v. Gore putting a copy of the constitution on the cover with the title "Will We Survive?" Or the claim every four years that This is The Most Important Presidential Election of Our Lives. It's like a form of mass hypochondria, where every little ache and pain gets diagnosed as terminal cancer. I hoped that 9/11 might actually provide some perspective on how much melodrama is appropriate for a given situation, but that didn't last. And of course, it's always the newsweaklies that are the worst offenders. How can an anonymous author of bestsellers sustain any credibility at all when he makes shrill, hysterical statements like this all the time? How can a grown man even pretend to think the powerless Republicans are making democracy unsustainable? What does that even mean?

  • ||

    Let's not forget that the NY Times and Judith Miller helped GW Bush make the case for war. Liberal MSM!

  • Euler||

    DeBeers isn't barred from the US. They have shops in NYC, Beverly Hills, Houston, the D.C. metro, etc. Also, they completely changed their business model around the turn of the century and are no longer a monopoly. They have about a 40% share of the market today compared to the 80% they controlled during the 20th century.

  • ||

    "Yes AO. Al Gore never mentioned Willie Horton. He just mentioned the furlough program that resulted in the murder of two people. But he didn't say Willie Horton by name during the debate. Yeah, that makes such a difference."

    Big difference, John. Big difference.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    Lamar - that's part of the conspiracy to keep Republicans oppressed. if you don't throw the untermenschen a bone once in a while, how can you hope to maintain the mediarchy?

  • ||

    Yeah Lamar. He just acsused Dukakis of being responsible for letting a lunatic out to harm people. But he didn't accuse him of letting a black man out to harm people. Whatever.

  • ||

    AO,

    Once again you never answer the agurment. You say some smart ass remark like that is enough. Even if the Willie Horton ad was pure evil, what does that have to do with the media? The media destroyed George Bush for that ad. To this day, it is held up as the horrible example of politics. How is that an example of the media being biased towards Republicans?

  • The Angry Optimist||

    Further, Willie Horton doesn't prove your point.



    I know - cannot reason someone out of a position they were not reasoned into. For what it's worth, John, I think there is bias, too - I just don't think it's an all-pervasive, keeping-the-little-Republicans-down institutional problem the way you do.

    You blame the media for everything. No, really, you do. And that makes you the Jesse Jackson of the right.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    John, you are not presenting an 'argument'. you are mad that I attacked your faith.

  • ||

    "For what it's worth, John, I think there is bias, too - I just don't think it's an all-pervasive, keeping-the-little-Republicans-down institutional problem the way you do. "

    Neither do I. So we really don't disagree on anyting.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    Riiiiight, John. So, this:

    They have been painting the right as crazy for fifty plus years now. At some point people just tune it out. Also, they are painting with such a broad brush. They are not just saying Republicans are crazy. They are saying anyone who disagrees with Obama is crazy. They are saying a majority of voters are crazy. That isn't going to work. Also, the over the top stuff that the media puts out about the Right works in the Right's favor sometime. The media builds up anyone from the right as being both a fundie moran and a crazy evil genius all in one. Then the guy gets up and gives a speech or has a debate and looks great because the bar has been set so low.



    That was all just bullshit? When you talk about the media, you practically hyperventilate.

  • ||

    I presented a ton of arguments. I gave concrete examples of how the media portrayed Republicans in very unfair lights and in ways they would never portray a Democrat and pointed out how your counter examples are not examples of Democrats being treated more unfairly than Republicans. That is an argument. I don't mind discussing these things and I don't expect you to agree with me. But I haven't insulted you. Stop insulting me. It is stupid and beneath you.

  • ||

    Maybe the MSM "leans left", but the way that GOPers make it sound, they think the MSM is the Rush Limbaugh of the left. But then again, they also think Sarah Palin is a quality leader.....

  • ||

    Hyperbole and distortion certainly exist on the left, but they are a minor chord in the Democratic Party. [...]

    Oh. Okay, then.

    Because it's not "hyperbole" if it's the truth, right, Joe?

  • ||

    "I presented a ton of arguments."

    Could you go ahead and argue the Judith Miller/NY Times one again? It seems that whenever a counterpoint is made, it gets ignored.

  • ||

    AO,

    Last I looked Joe Klein was a pretty big MSM figure. And he saying anyone who disagrees with Obamacare is crazy. That is what the whole post is about. Yes, the media has portrayed the right and anyone who advocates small government as kooks for years. Groups like the Sierra Club and the Urban Institute are routinely quoted as unbiased authorities while any right leaning or small government organization is portrayed as an interest group. It is just the way the media opiates. Conventional wisdom is always big government and liberal and anything else is out of the mainstream and extreme. That is not exactly a bold statement.

  • ||

    "I presented a ton of arguments."

    Could you go ahead and argue the Judith Miller/NY Times one again? It seems that whenever a counterpoint is made, it gets ignored"

    Is it your position Judy Miller was biased and beant on helping Bush go to war? Or maybe it was the case that Miller had a bunch of good sources and was taken in by people? Do you honestly think that Miller is some kind of Republican operative who decided it was her duty to get the country to go to war? I think it is more likely she was a reporter who didn't know much and believed a bunch of stuff people in high places told her and printed it because she wanted a good story.

  • ||

    If you're not being oppressed, you're little people.

  • ||

    If you think Judy Miller was working for Bush and part of the NeoCon cabal, then you are more paranoid than Lonewacko Lamar.

  • ||

    "If you think Judy Miller was working for Bush and part of the NeoCon cabal, then you are more paranoid than Lonewacko Lamar."

    But the NY Times is supposed to be a "big player" in the MSM, and there they were publishing stories that didn't say George W. Bush was a kook.......at a time when they should have been calling BS. I'm not saying Judith Miller is G. Gordon Liddy in a pantsuit. It just, you know, debunks your theory that MSM is out to get GOPers.

  • ||

    Anyhow, two posts on the same subject suggests to me that the point landed.

  • Tony||

    John if the media are biased it's toward profits. That means highlighting whatever gives them ratings. Sometimes that means covering Sarah Palin as if she were someone to be taken seriously. Sometimes it means going into lurid detail about presidential semen. Sometimes it means not challenging Bush's phony war in a time of rampant, paranoid patriotism.

    In my opinion it's a good day when the news media simply reports the truth. If it so happens that truth favors Democrats over Republicans (who let's face it have a bad habit of being big fat liars), then boo fucking hoo.

    At any rate these are businesses acting freely. What do you want, affirmative action for conservative thought in the media because it's so so unfair?

  • ||

    "But the NY Times is supposed to be a "big player" in the MSM, and there they were publishing stories that didn't say George W. Bush was a kook.......at a time when they should have been calling BS. I'm not saying Judith Miller is G. Gordon Liddy in a pantsuit. It just, you know, debunks your theory that MSM is out to get GOPers."

    First, Judy Miller isn't the only NYT reporter. The NYT covered the hell out of people who were arguing against the war. You act like they only published Miller's stories. Those stories were a small part of their coverage. People who were objecting to the war got a very fair shake. Go back and look at the NYT coverage of Iraq in late 2002 Miller and all. Then compare the coverage war doubters got from the NYT to the coverage OBamacare doubters are getting today. You will find that the war doubters were treated a hell of a lot more objectively and favorably. That is what I am talking about.

  • ||

    "At any rate these are businesses acting freely. What do you want, affirmative action for conservative thought in the media because it's so so unfair?"


    It is not unfair at all. It is a free country. They can print what they like. And everyone else can call them out for it.

  • Anonymous||

    John if the media are biased it's toward profits.

    Dan Rather knows how you can fix that.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    Huh, John, what kind of bias is this?.

  • mark||

    @ Tony

    If you want to argue effectively amongst people who disagree with you, try using examples that make you look more disinterested and objective. For example, I don't think the media is interested in profit at all - no mainstream outlet was interested in vigorously pursueing the details of Bush's cocaine use or Edwards's love child. Sleaze sells, regardless of party affiliation, something the MSM tries to stay above regardless of the politicians political orientation.See how easy it is?

    And on that note, shut the fuck up Tony:)

  • alan||

    Bad Serve, Joe,

    There was McCarthyism in the 1950s, the John Birch Society in the 1960s. But there was a difference in those times: the crazies were a faction - often a powerful faction - of the Republican Party, but they didn't run it. The neofascist Father Coughlin had a huge radio audience in the 1930s, but he didn't have the power to control and silence the elected leaders of the party that Limbaugh - who, if not the party's leader, is certainly the most powerful Republican extant - does now.

    Are you really trying to suggest Coughlin was a proto-Limbaugh and proto modern Republican? I'm afraid that Goddamn commie clergy man is actually a monkey on your back, most projective of dudes. From the Wikipedia:


    Coughlin's support for Roosevelt and his New Deal faded later in 1934, when he founded the National Union for Social Justice (NUSJ), a nationalistic worker's rights organization which grew impatient with what it viewed as the President's unconstitutional and pseudo-capitalistic monetary policies. His radio programs preached more and more about the negative influence of "money changers" and "permitting a group of private citizens to create money" on the general welfare of the public.[6] He also spoke about the need for monetary reform. Coughlin claimed that the Depression was a "cash famine". Some modern economic historians, in part, agree with this assessment. [7] Coughlin proposed monetary reforms, including the elimination of the Federal Reserve System, as the solution.

    Among the articles of the NUSJ, were work and income guarantees, nationalizing "necessary" industry, wealth redistribution through taxation of the wealthy, federal protection of worker's unions, and decreasing property rights in favor of the government controlling the country's assets for "public good." [8] Illustrative of his disdain for capitalism is his statement that, "We maintain the principle that there can be no lasting prosperity if free competition exists in industry. Therefore, it is the business of government not only to legislate for a minimum annual wage and maximum working schedule to be observed by industry, but also to curtail individualism that, if necessary, factories shall be licensed and their output shall be limited." [9]


    Whatever font of enlightenment you believe yourself and your clique to be, the socialist in practice has little choice but to degenerate into nativism, protectionism, and, yes, even nationalism to protect its interest against the free market that is, non political means of social organization.

    Joe, Father Coughlin is you without the warm fuzzy mask.

  • ||

    Let's see, within my recent memory, I remember:

    - Every lurid detail of Lewinsky, including the semi-pornographic Starr report, printed in fulsome detail, in every major newspaper in the United States.

    - I seem to remember a short Massachusetts Greek being roundly mocked for both Willie Horton and riding in a tank

    - Oh, I almost forgot: some in the media openly questioned whether Clinton was "wagging the dog"



    Those things actually happened, though. At this point the MSM is simply making stuff up about the GOP. Not to mention that Clinton was no friend of the left by the time of the Lewinsky scandal.

    And if you don't think Clinton was wagging the dog with his missile strikes during the impeachment hearings, you must believe in the Easter Bunny too. The Dems immediately called for the House to call off the impeachment hearings due to our military being engaged overseas and us having to show a united front against the terrorists.

  • ||

    The gun clingers speech was a self inflicted wound. They couldn't ignore it.

    Indeed. But the part they emphasized was the "bitter" part, which was not nearly as offensive as the "cling" part (and remember, it wasn't just guns and religion they were supposed to be clinging to, but "antipathy toward people who aren't like them" as well).

  • ||

    "Huh, John, what kind of bias is this?."

    That is Fox News. Everyone agrees Fox is biased towards Republicans. Got it. The issue is that all of the other major outlets are just as biased towards the Democrats. All I am asking for is for the other outlets to be held to the same standard Fox News is.

  • ||

    "You act like they only published Miller's stories."

    So you're saying the publishes stories on both sides? I thought you were saying that they only published stories saying GOPers were kooks? And, really, I'm talking about the NY Times' assistance in building the case for war, not their coverage in "late 2002" after it was clear that GWB was full of crap the whole time.

  • ||

    Sorry John, got my dates mixed up.

  • alan||

    And on that note, shut the fuck up Tony:)

    Yes, but when he invites you to his jerk circle, why do you cum? Better off letting him beat off in the corner like other lone carbon negative wackos.

  • Elemenope||

    Rarely possible with one as willfully disingenuous as Tony. Christ, he still thinks this is a Republican forum.

    I would forgive any who made such an error, the comments being what they are.

    In the 1964 campaign the media portrayed Goldwater as a derranged war monger beant on nuking Russia. Then came Reagan. Throughout the enitre 1980s the media portrayed Reagan as senile old man who was going to get us into World War III and who was intent on throwing old people into the street.

    Whatever Goldwater's other fine qualities, at least his rhetoric was pretty deranged when it came to engagement with Russia. And for the record, Reagan was definitely old, and probably senile for much of his two terms.

    If you're going to impugn the media, I dunno, pick things they got wrong. It would help.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    Those things actually happened, though.



    Yes, Bill Clinton actually did fool around with an intern. There, one sentence, right?

    But, oh no, the whole Starr report had to be printed? As a "special insert edition" to major newspapers?

  • Tony||

    If you want to argue effectively amongst people who disagree with you, try using examples that make you look more disinterested and objective.



    Thank you ever so much for your advice. I suppose you mean I should pretend that there is some sort of equivalence between the left and right, Dems and GOPers, that a presidential blow job is just as morally abhorrent as a phony war.

    Yeah this is why John is wrong. If CNN doesn't give the GOP affirmative action in its coverage then it's obviously in the tank for Dems. Actuality has no role to play apparently.

  • The Angry Optimist||

    Shut the fuck up, Tony-bot.

  • JB||

    Klein = fetus.

  • ||

    "And if you don't think Clinton was wagging the dog with his missile strikes during the impeachment hearings, you must believe in the Easter Bunny too."

    I don't think Clinton was wagging the dog, and I don't believe in the Easter Bunny. However, I'm glad Hollywood has influenced your politics!

  • alan||

    - Every lurid detail of Lewinsky, including the semi-pornographic Starr report, printed in fulsome detail, in every major newspaper in the United States.

    Ah, those were indeed good times, for me personally. I turned off the news sometime in late January, I believe it was, due to the constant repetition of He Said/She Said. I got three dozen or so books read that I had been meaning to get to, including Mises' Human Action, and several of Rothbard's. Kept the political channels off until some time in the Summer when I could not help but notice the headline, 'Holy Shit, She Kept The Cum Stained Dress!' I have to admit that pulled me back in for a while.

  • ||

    "Whatever Goldwater's other fine qualities, at least his rhetoric was pretty deranged when it came to engagement with Russia. And for the record, Reagan was definitely old, and probably senile for much of his two terms."

    That is just ridiculous. Reagan was not senile and Goldwater was not a nut. If anyone was a nut it was Johnson, who lied through his teeth about his intentions in Vietnam. Reagan was so senile he managed to successfully negotiate with Gorbachev in Iceland. He was so senile he managed to work with Tip O'Neil and get the tax reform of 1986. Reagan was so senile he managed to be a popular President and sell his ideas to the American people throughout 8 years in office.

    You don't have to like Reagan. But to claim that he was senile is just stupid.

  • ||

    Joe Klein has a tantalizingly (is that a word?!) punchable face.

  • Tony||

    John Reagan's popularity diminished quite a bit when it was discovered he was illegally selling arms to Iran. But you wouldn't know that since there's a "Ronnie was a saint" propaganda industry that infects the lib loving media to this day.

  • ||

    "John Reagan's popularity diminished quite a bit when it was discovered he was illegally selling arms to Iran. But you wouldn't know that since there's a "Ronnie was a saint" propaganda industry that infects the lib loving media to this day."

    Yeah, he was so unpopular they voted down his boring VP in a landslide and put the Dems in 1988. That is how it worked out right Tony?

  • ||

    "Yeah, he was so unpopular they voted down his boring VP in a landslide and put the Dems in 1988."

    This is supposed to be more evidence of an MSM liberal cabal? A GOP winning is evidence of liberal bias?

  • alan||

    The way I remember these events was the MSM decrying the, "racist hatchet job" those evil GOPers perpetrated, and the, "grade-school labeling" by those evil GOPers again.

    Not defending the GOP, but it IS clear that the MSM leans to the Dems, and has done so for my entire adult life.


    Willey Horton is a bit of an exception in the '88 narrative, though. It had the sexy angle of RACE!, and if there is one thing the MSM knows how to do it is to rend the garments over anything that has a whiff of RACE! in it.

    However, overall, there was a pro-Bush bias in the tone that year because MSM perceived Bush to be the more competent man to run the big government they so love. With Dukakis there was strong risk of another Carter where the reputation of BigGov comes out tarnished once again because of the man that would be its face.

  • alan||

    ugh, thought I corrected that Willie Horton. I've always hated the name Willie, it a silly name.

  • ||

    "This is supposed to be more evidence of an MSM liberal cabal? A GOP winning is evidence of liberal bias?"

    No. I was responding to Tony. So it by necessity has nothing to do with anything. Ignore it.

  • ||

    "However, overall, there was a pro-Bush bias in the tone that year because MSM perceived Bush to be the more competent man to run the big government they so love. With Dukakis there was strong risk of another Carter where the reputation of BigGov comes out tarnished once again because of the man that would be its face."


    I can see your point. But if that is true, why on earth did they fall in love with Obama?

  • alan||

    I can see your point. But if that is true, why on earth did they fall in love with Obama?

    They were blinded by the light, like a douche that gets rolled up in the night.

  • ||

    "What truly bothers Klein and his fellow liberals is this: It took six years for the "idiot" Bush to have his administration implode."

    IIRC, Bush II's approval poll numbers during his first term were higher than Dear Leader's during his, comparatively and currently. However, Bush's number were slowly but steadily declining until 9/11, then his poll numbers took a sharp re-uptake, only to slowly but steady decline until he left office.

    I find it laughable at best that Obummer's agenda is largely indistingushable from the preceding admin, except on copious amounts of steroids and administered at MUCH faster rate; and the pundits and Dem "leadership" are stunned that the rate of implosion is directly proportionate to the speed of policy implemetation, both actual and proposed.

  • ||

    Republicans always bring out the crazies in a midterm election year mainly because they are usually low turnouts and the batshit loonies vote in full force and can swing an election. During the Presidential races, however, the money men in the GOP pick a more tempermentally moderate candidate so as not to scare off the independents.

  • ||

    I also find it sad that Klein (take your pick) glosses over how many 'czars' Obama has appointed. Polifact reported 28; essentially positions of appointment without the benefit of transparency and accountability to anyone but the Pres, as pointed out by McCain earlier this year.

    Much like FDR did during his admin.

    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2009/jun/12/john-mccain/McCain-says-Obama-has-more-czars-than-Romanovs/

  • T||

    So, John's a Republican and Joe Klein remains the assclown he's been for years now. Is that a good summary of the comments so far?

  • Joe M||

    Yes. Other than that, they're pretty content free.

  • Tony||

    why on earth did they fall in love with Obama?



    Again, it's a good story. You know, potential first black president and all. If there was genuine bias I forgive it: another 4 years of Republican rule, and a potential president Palin.... allowing that to happen would have amounted to gross criminal negligence of our civilization.

  • ||

    I also find it sad that Klein (take your pick) glosses over how many 'czars' Obama has appointed. Polifact reported 28;


    Well, there's the problem. We ain't got enough czars and czarinas.

  • ||

    You don't have to love Dems to realize how seriously fucking insane the GOP has become.

    huh? they are so disorginized the only real message i get from them is "Stop Obama!!"

    I hardly think that is an insane message considering they are The Opposition Party....

    What am i missing here?

  • Ha||

    You think Michael Steele runs the Republican Party? I don't think that guy even has signing privileges for checks over $500.

  • ||

    The GOP is Wall Street convincing the average American male that he is better off voting against his own economic interests for Jesus.

    The Wall Street GOP cares about tax cuts, deregulation and heavy subsidies. Look at Bush's major initiatives: tax cuts, 2 wars (great for Beltway Bandits), Medicare D (great for Big Pharma), Ag Subsidies, and massive deregulation. Oh, sure, it all resulted in financial chaos, but that's the price you pay for slopping the corporate trough.

    Unfortunately, Wall Street makes up 1% of the nation, so you need to convince Joe the Plummer to vote on Guns, Gays and God. Wall Street doesn't care about those issues, but how else do you get blue collar guys to vote against unions, minimum wage and universal health care?

  • alan||

    Joe M | August 21, 2009, 1:48pm | #
    Yes. Other than that, they're pretty content free.


    Yes, and your remark alone if it was pitched in print and laid out in a bird cage would have resulted in the fowl being splattered in a blood soaked burst of feathers against the tinged metal rings given the vacuousness of its content.

  • ||

    "why does it keep rewarding anti-racist anti-populists at the top of its presidential ticket (including, notably, the ticket that ran against a liberal Democrat black candidate), while rejecting every dime-store Tancredo with prejudice?"

    How do you not mention Sarah Palin while trying to make this argument? Do you think Palin represents a departure from Cheney, Kemp, Quayle, HW Bush, Dole? Come on. You don't have to like Joe Klein to admit he's right. It's nothing revelatory.

  • ||

    Um, Matt? The rank-and-file Republican voter didn't WANT McCain. The only reason they got McCain was because Romney and Huckabee split the hard-core conservative vote, giving John the opening. They didn't even think much of his campaign until put an insane woman on the ticket.

    Seriously, Welch, you used to be better than this.

  • ||

  • ||

    "But the NY Times is supposed to be a "big player" in the MSM, and there they were publishing stories that didn't say George W. Bush was a kook.......at a time when they should have been calling BS."

    Judy Miller's WMD narrative, and the sources she collected on them, were set during the 1990s. By 2003 her position could have been projected from years of stories on the issue.

    And the Democratic leadership, like everyone important in Washington, believed Saddam's possession of WMDs was thought a no-brainer.

    Democrats, particularly 'liberal' Democrats, are overwhelming represented in the press corps. It affects their coverage, and the stories they choose to promote, both consciously and unconsciously.

    That's actually a no-brainer.

  • ||

    And the Democratic leadership, like everyone important in Washington, believed Saddam's possession of WMDs was a no-brainer.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    If you don't trust the government to run health care, you are a nihilist. Your lack of faith in the goodness of the state reveals that you utterly lack values and don't believe in the goodness of anything.


    The government is as infallible on health care as it is in criminal justice, as King-Drew hospital in Los Angeles County demonstrated.

    It took Obama, the "Smartest Man Ever Elected President," barely eight months.


    Nominating a tax cheat as Secretary of the Treasury was a huge red flag.

    Can anyone remember President Carter making such a misstep in the first quarter?


    In my opinion it's a good day when the news media simply reports the truth. If it so happens that truth favors Democrats over Republicans (who let's face it have a bad habit of being big fat liars), then boo fucking hoo.


    New Questions on Bush Guard Duty

    Where NBC Went Wrong

    It is said by some that the media's role is a watchdog on American society. I would add that the only way the watchdog can be blinded is if the media lied, and they did.

  • ||

    Artificial diamonds cost a tenth as much and sparkle just the same

    Actually, they're better. No flaws.

    -jcr

  • alan||

    The rank-and-file Republican voter didn't WANT McCain.

    Colin Powell wanted McCain. Mark Shields wanted McCain. Chris Mathews wanted McCain. Guess what, they didn't vote for McCain. Neither did I (The 'stache), but I never wanted him. The standard Washington mythology was that McCain was the only 'electable' candidate on the Republican side.

    He was never electable because those who liked his Teddy Roosevelt act were liberals who would vote the donkey in the first place. Except against a very weak candidate in a very good year for Republicans, he never stood a chance.

    To be fair to the old coot, when Bernanke and Paulson pulled the October Surprise, all chance evaporated.

  • ||

    The standard Washington mythology was that McCain was the only 'electable' candidate on the Republican side.

    My take on the McCain nomination was that the Powers that Be in the party hierarchy knew that whoever ran this time was going to land on a milk carton next to Walter Mondale, and they were perfectly happy to toss McCain under that bus.

    -jcr

  • Geotpf||

    Since Obama's election, the crazies in the Republican Party (and the larger conservative movement) certainly have increased in power and in the loudness of their shouting.

    There are no moderates in the Republican Party any more. There's Arnie, and the Maine Twins in the Senate, and...that's about it. Everybody else has lost an election, retired, switched parties, or a combination of the above, and no new ones are replacing them. If one is a moderate these days, one is a Democrat by default.

    However, on the Democratic side, there are so many moderate office holders that they have a club (Blue Dogs) that is an active thorn in the President's side.

    You don't want to be the party that the general public thinks all look like rabid dogs, frothing at the mouth.

    Klien is looking for intellectuals on the right, people who make a reasonable, logical, accurate argument against the current health care proposals. Very few exist, and they are out-shouted about people outright lying about "death panels" and crap.

  • ||

    The GOP is Wall Street convincing the average American male that he is better off voting against his own economic interests for Jesus.

    So that's why Wall Street gave more money to Obama than to McCain!

    Since Obama's election, the crazies in the Republican Democratic Party (and the larger conservative lefty movement) certainly have increased in power and in the loudness of their shouting.

    He has certainly been polarizing, you have to admit.

    If one is a moderate these days, one is a Democrat by default.

    Yet, oddly, conservative Repubs complain long and loud that their party is in the control of so-called moderates (such as McCain). Of course, if you define moderate as "somewhat left of center", both Geotpf and the conservative Repubs are both right.

    Klien is looking for intellectuals on the right, people who make a reasonable, logical, accurate argument against the current health care proposals.

    I dunno about the "right", but there are plenty of people out there pointing out that the "public option" is a Trojan Horse for single-payer, and that single-payer is deeply flawed.

  • alan||

    . If one is a moderate these days, one is a Democrat by default.


    What the fuck ever. If you voted for Porkulus your claim to a moderate temperament is a flat zero.

  • ||

    "Still, if, as the growing media narrative contends, the Republicans have devolved into a rump party of half-sane white southerners wracked by racial anxiety, why does it keep rewarding anti-racist anti-populists at the top of its presidential ticket"


    .......Trojan horses dear boy, trojan horses.......backed up by a racist, populist numbskull

  • ||

    That's not our regular John

  • ||

    Is "Klein" a synonym for hysteric, clueless left-tard? Joe, Naomi, Ezra - fuck, it's almost as bad as "Kennedy" (though in that case they are all related).

  • B||

    "Hyperbole and distortion certainly exist on the left, but they are a minor chord in the Democratic Party. "


    That single fucking quote pretty much makes the rest of his editorial total and complete bullshit. It is absolutely amazing how opposition to left wing political policies is now defined as nihilism. Where and the fuck was this same outrage during the Bush years. For fuck sake, the Dems even filibustered judicial nominees.

  • B||

    You wanna know why the Dems get their asses kicked despite the repeated protestations by biased assholes like Joe Klein and dicks on this site like Tony who only know how to write in asinine generalities about the "right"?
    It can be boiled down to one or two reasons, but the following is one of the most persuasive:
    $9 Trillion fucking dollar 10 year deficit
    and


    $1.6 Trillion dollar deficit for this year


    The echochamber left can yell amongst themselves all they want about how fucking crazy the GOP has become , but the polls showing a 70% disapproval of Congress, a GOP lead in the generic ballot and a President's approval ratings that are going down faster than Bush's post-Katrina prove one thing:
    People must favor crazy over batshit out of control fucking spending and arrogance so fucking thick you can see the cloud from your fucking house.

    Like they do every fucking time a Democrat's agenda meets resistance, the media is trotting out the "the GOP is just so fucking awful" narrative, but it ain't fucking working, as every poll know to fucking man proves.

  • Nick Kaufman||

    Sorry, didn't read the comments and don't know if it was pointed out or not, but the simple reason a moderate like McCain was chosen last cycle and not a representative of the Southern, evangelical, more conservative wing of the party is because Republicans rigged the process in order to favor a northeastern moderate by establishing winner take all primaries it the northeastern, coastal states and proportional representation in the south.

    That system was supposed to help Rudy Giuliani, but it served McCain just as well.

    PS. And let's not forget how the McCain insurgent campaign which tried to redefine the party away from it's hard core base was defeated by stoking the worst fears of that base....

  • Michael Ejercito||


    However, on the Democratic side, there are so many moderate office holders that they have a club (Blue Dogs) that is an active thorn in the President's side.


    How many of the moderates hold leadership positions?

    $9 Trillion fucking dollar 10 year deficit
    and


    $1.6 Trillion dollar deficit for this year


    Bush never had deficits this high.

  • ||

    You sound "bitter".....heh.

  • ||

    Reading a lot of these comments, a funny thing came to my mind. The images often painted of "the other" by both the left and the right are of the "extremist authoritarian crazy person." There is some health to this in that it reaffirms at least a partial distaste for statism in our population BUT the truth of the matter is that the fringe-y crazies are exactly what they are, on the fringe.

    The propaganda that gets bandied about (and thoughtlessly repeated) by all sides, left, right, up, and down, is simple stereotyping at its worst. Are there crazies on all sides? Of course there are. But hey, guess, what, whatever side you're on likely has just as many as any of the other sides. We (and Mr. Klein) ought to try to get beyond this nuttiness.

    For example, both Bush and Obama are statists, that is undeniable and of course unfortunate, but neither wants to "destroy America" and their supporters aren't "dumb," "crazy," "nihilistic," or "evil" for simply supporting them.

    The messages of condescension from, let's face it, both sides (though I'm more worried by the constant haranguing of opponents by those in power at the moment than the other way around, as we always should be), is silly. People believe what they believe because they think it is for the best, that it is good and it is just. We might feel they are wrong (and indeed they very well might be wrong), but we oughtn't throw out lame accusations. This magazine is called Reason for, uh, well, a reason, let's all try to use it.

  • ernie||

    Groups like the Birch Society could never obtain the stature required to impact public policy debates because of their malicious tactics and other self-inflicted wounds. Even J. Edgar Hoover and senior FBI officials recognized the danger which groups like the JBS presented. For details, see my 90-page report on the JBS which is based upon first-time-released FBI files and documents:
    http://ernie1241.googlepages.com/jbs-1

    However, something has fundamentally changed in our country since the Birch Society came into existence. We are losing a respect for alternative viewpoints. We seem to dispute the idea that there are honorable, decent people whose views we disagree with.

    Instead, we are coming closer to adopting the JBS perspective, namely, that there is always only ONE correct interpretation of any matter in dispute, and only ONE correct public policy option to choose.

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