Conservatism

Friday Mini Book Review: Conservatism in America

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The Mini Book Review is back. See many old ones.

Conservatism in America: Making Sense of the American Right, by Paul Gottfried (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007). Gottfried's outlook on a topic oft-addressed by many writers (this is, in fact, his own second book assessing the American right) is at least a rare and bracing one: a paleo-rightist himself who thinks most of the popular and successful manifestations of the American right have sold out its own values–quite literally sold out, in pursuit of foundation cash and job openings controlled by neocons. This is most certainly a book for deep-insiders–you couldn't really make much sense of it if you weren't already versed in reading and thinking about, in, and among the American right–but for those types, its perspective is necessary.

The heart of Gottfried's thesis? Conservatism "has developed a talent not only for presenting takeovers as the serene march of the past into the present but also for treating a general retreat from its original positions as a progression of victories." The American right has retreated from a genuine oppositional intellectual movement to one with "a situational function, that of framing policies for the Republican Party and contributing to the administrative staff of Republican administrations."

He grants, with consummate fairness and a great deal of truth, that a conservative movement more to his liking–one that "stood where….Ron Paul…does today, might well have opposed the liberal Left even less effectively than the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute do today."

Gottfriend distinguishes the classless and unrooted, purely intellectual, American conservatism from any European roots; laments the passing of Russell Kirk (though he has his reservations about him as well) as a prime right-wing influence in favor of Jaffa and Strauss; traces the subtle shifting and occasional precarious combinations of dueling systems of "value conservatism" within the movement (while noting that nowadays it's easier for value conservatism to forgive being tolerant of gay marriage than being intolerent of endless wars for democracy); and ends with sadness that that global crusade for "democratic values" has inhabited the shell of conservative institutions, all the while tracing this more to cashflow than idea flow, and denying any modern conservative triumphalism that claims their neo-conservatism is more intellectual or ethically purer than the old variety they superseded.

In the end, noting intellectual conservatism's lack of any mass social or class base, he declares it mostly "contrived" and a "media phenomenon," and darkly suspects it functions well as an ally to left-liberals in keeping more paleo-cons, like himself, safely segregated from the public conversation. For a book undergirded to some degree by anger at what he sees as a conspiracy to subvert true conservative values, it remains dispassionate enough that even those who disagree with his thesis can do so without feeling embattled. Gottfried leaves you room to consider his thesis, even be enlightened by it, without agreeing with it, a refreshing rarity in interested assessments of political movement and theory.

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  1. This is why we need to support Sarah Palin. McCain aside, she’s the first real conservative since Reagan that’s made the White House ticket, and she’s a sign that the Clinton/neocon era is over and the GOP is rediscovering its roots. Of course, if B. Hussein Obama wins, it will fall further into chaos.

  2. “This is why we need to support Sarah Palin. McCain aside, she’s the first real conservative since Reagan that’s made the White House ticket, and she’s a sign that the Clinton/neocon era is over and the GOP is rediscovering its roots.”

    Maybe’s she’s the conservative Buddy Christ.

  3. while noting that nowadays it’s easier for value conservatism to forgive being tolerant of gay marriage than being intolerent of endless wars for democracy

    FDR and JFK would be shocked that the Wilsonians are all pretty much on the right today.

    You know, we didn’t have to provoke Japan into war. Then we invaded a country that hadn’t even attacked us, and because we went in without a plan, half of Europe ended up in thrall to Communism.

    War is a series of catastrophes that end in victory. Once upon a time, people who understood that still thought freedom was thought worth fighting for.

  4. Follow the money

    Hurry up and wait
    Troops idle in the kill zone
    Our USN as ducks in a bathtub

    Nader/Gonzalez
    McKinney/Clemente

    Honor
    Ron Paul
    Mike Gravel
    Dennis Kucinich
    JFK RFK MLK Malcolm

  5. “This is why we need to support Sarah Palin. McCain aside, she’s the first real conservative since Reagan that’s made the White House ticket”

    What exactly has she done or espoused that makes you come to that conclusion?

    “and she’s a sign that the Clinton/neocon era is over and the GOP is rediscovering its roots”?

    You’re confident enough in her foreign policy positions to make that statement?

    This is a person that has had exactly 3 – 3! – TV interviews in which to make her views known to a national audience. (And one of them was with Sean Hannity so I don’t think it counts)

    Here’s an example: This is an interview she did with Time magazine. Please read it and tell me if you gain any insight at all into her overall philosophy on gov’t and governing.

    http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1837536-1,00.html

  6. Neocon logic: The conservative movement has been co-opted by Wilsonians and New Dealers, and “This is why we need to support Sarah Palin.”

    “You know, we didn’t have to provoke Japan into war.”

    Neocons have a perpetual feedback loop of the Rape of Nanking and the Munich Accords playing in their pathetic excuses for brains. They can’t even get an erection unless they’re jacking off to a copy of Winston Churchill’s *Gathering Storm.* American soldiers, and foreign men, women and children, pay the price.

  7. FDR and JFK would be shocked that the Wilsonians are all pretty much on the right today

    You underestimate the lure of foreign interventionism to the left (esp once actually in power; Weigel covered it pretty well earlier today). And underestimate (but less so) the schism on the right that Bush’s wilsonianism has caused. There’s always been, and always will be, a little bit of team blue team red cheerleading that determines a ‘just’ war

    But, the most important element, as Patton, or at least George C. Scott said, is “Americans love a winner and will not tolerate a loser”

    Mexican, Spanish American, World War 2? Gulf War 1? Good wars

    Vietnam? Bad war.

    1812, WW1, Korea? Meh Wars.

    100 years of Latin america interventions? There was a War?

    Iraq? TBD War.

    (not necessairly saying my personal judgement, just the conventional wisdom – which is of course what counts in politics and elections)

  8. Palin has no fixed philosophy. Her “libertarian” record is simply a reflection of her political calculations in libertarian-leaning Alaska. She doesn’t have any coherent, organized political worldview, even moreso than McCain (who at least has his proto-fascist obsession with gov’t-led national greatness) The only thing that matters to her is fame and power. She’s a political genius and a policy idiot, and even if McCain wins I rate her chances of ever becoming President as much lower than average for a VP. And it’s not because of her gender.

  9. I like Gottfried, a truly academic conservative. One thing you can’t say about him is that he is a hired gun or a hack…

    “And underestimate (but less so) the schism on the right that Bush’s wilsonianism has caused.”

    Maybe among pundits and such, but is that true for rank and file folks who consider themselves “conservative?” I though they backed the War on Terror (Bush verion) strongly. I notice McCain strummed that chord and became the nominee.

  10. Andy, well said on Palin. An empty skirt.

  11. When exactly did this Republican Party exist? I would love to know, since so many fiscal Conservatives lament its passing as if it actually existed outside of an Ayn Rand screed.

    Republicanism, in its modern incarnation, has always been propped up by the Religious right, and not too long ago, by straight up racist ideologues. Some would even say that it still has legs with the “white man’s burden” angle.

    Even Ron Paul understood this in his newsletters, and adjusted them accordingly to try and attract an important demographic.

    Palin was brought in to counter the “progressive” image of Obama’s campaign, but she has absolutely played up the robotic, Conservative roll of being all about God, Guns, and Log Cabins.

  12. As free-market fundamentalism bites the dust, it’s fitting to retreat into theolgical ruminations. Leave Palin to the masses. We libertarian intellectuals have other fish to fry. We have to get our bearings, to regain some ideological certainty. It won’t be easy, but we will keep the faith intact. Onward Libertarian soldiers!

  13. Even speaking as someone who identifies most with Gottfried’s brand of conservativism, I still think it’s a bit intellectually lazy to insist that the explanation for the rise of big-government and pro-war conservativism is due to the formation some conspirational workings with liberals to keep paleo-conservatives disempowered. It’s the whole “What’s the matter with Kansas?” argument for libertarians: that people have identified with the Republican Party only because they’ve been snookered, rather than because they’ve come to see the world as a dangerous place, with nobody putting forth a reliable plan (yes, that includes libertarians like myself) for grappling with distinctly modern dangerous, such as increasingly easy capacity for developing nuclear weapons. Although I don’t really identify with the types of conservatives of which he writes, I hope to see more analyses from people who treats their arguments and ideas with seriousness.

  14. “I hope to see more analyses from people who treats [sic!] their arguments and ideas with seriousness.”

    I hope to see more people who understand verb/subject agreement.

  15. Maybe among pundits and such, but is that true for rank and file folks who consider themselves “conservative?” I though they backed the War on Terror (Bush verion) strongly. I notice McCain strummed that chord and became the nominee

    Strictly, you are right. But I think the people who consider themselves ‘conservative’ has dropped considerably.

    It depends on what an updated version of this table says.

    If those “slightly conservative” and “conservative” numbers are lower like I think they are, then I think my point stands. If not, then you’re right, it’s just among ‘opinion leaders’.

    I think, but cannot find, that the big drop off you see between ’02 and ’04 in ‘conservative’ continued, and that uptick in ‘slightly conservative’ over the same period gave up its gains and also declined.

    And Giuliani and Romney and Huckabee (really everyone but Paul) strummed the cord as strongly, McCain was just able to play GWOT Guitar Hero a little better, being a hero and all. (and I do not think that it was the principle reason he was the last man standing, but it helped)

    “and Log Cabins.”

    I thought ‘Log Cabin Republican’ meant something very different. Although it would certainly be another game changer if Palin was a switch hitter. Or to use the metaphor from the appropriate sport, if she plays like Bill Durnan

  16. Andy, well said on Palin. An empty skirt.

    Wow, how substantive! Dazzle us with that mean intellect.

  17. Andy, well said on Palin. An empty skirt.

    Wow, how substantive! Dazzle us with that mean intellect.

    Yet, since you apparently could think of nothing of any importance to share, you do something just as dumb, dazzle us with arrogance. Lovely.

  18. Lefiti, I’ve since noticed that I made a few other grammatical errors in my post. However, you better catch them quickly. So many other spelling and grammar mistakes all around the internet that demand your corrections! Good, productive work, thus far!

  19. What’s the Matter with Kansas? I wonder that every time Sebelius speaks.

    My problem with Sarah is that she now has the mantel of the presumptive 2012 nominee and will likely get in the way of a very talented individual Bobby J. down Louisiana way.

    If Obama wins and governs according what is coming out of his mouth at this time (a huge assumption, he is likely more shrewd and pragmatic than that), he’ll get four years, and an opportunity for a younger generation of Republicans to have a fresh start. Palin with her demonstrable acquiescence to the NeoCons, can only stand in the way.

    I don’t know what value the term ‘Conservative’ has at this time. B. D. goes into the schism between paleoconservatives and neocons, but their is also one between the libertarians and the evangelicals. What connection can an anti-collectivist libertarian have to the Mike Huckabees in the GOP?

    I caught his speech at the convention where he repeated a favorite story describing a teacher (obviously psychotic) who started a class without any desks and to shame the kids into submission she had military veterans walk in with the desk in their hands. Congratulations Teach, you have reduced American patriotism to the thoughtless synaptic impulses of any damn resident of any other damnable nation, and you completely misunderstood this nation’s founding in the process.

    How to make common cause with those who bend their knecks before the office of the presidency (so long as it is GOP) and obey their government without question?
    You can’t.

  20. Hey adina, tell him to deduct it from whatever he is paying you.

    He use to go under another name and write poems with lines like, ‘our free market, thou art in wall street’, but I would have to go back to the archives, it was pretty much forgettable as well.

    Did you catch the homonyminal error in my post above? I’m sure you did. Go with Marketspeed, good man.

  21. homonyminal

  22. Brian, good to see you back. Were you on sabbatical or something? Why the long absence?

  23. Ditto on the “Welcome Back” sentiment, sung in John Sebastian’s voice.

  24. Lefti, while you were busy correcting grammar, I was getting laid. Ponder that, fucktard.

  25. Here’s a question for you free-market fundamentalists: how old is the earth…oops, no, the question for you is the following:

    In the current financial crisis, if we let the market punish those who acted irresponsiblly, everything is so intertwined systemically, won’t the market inevitably punish nealry everybody, including those who did nothing irresponsible? Sorry if this long question has left you with sore lips.

  26. This is why we need to support Sarah Palin. McCain aside, she’s the first real conservative since Reagan that’s made the White House ticket, and she’s a sign that the Clinton/neocon era is over and the GOP is rediscovering its roots.

    Tell that to Paul Gottfried.

  27. “In the current financial crisis, if we let the market punish those who acted irresponsiblly, everything is so intertwined systemically, won’t the market inevitably punish nealry everybody, including those who did nothing irresponsible?”

    No. If we go forward w/ what the gov’t wants to do, and is doing, then not only will people that had nothing to do w/ this mess get punished, but people who did do something wrong will get off the hook. Take me for example; I pay my bills on time, whenever I’ve applied to take out a loan or line of credit I’ve read the terms very carefully. Then, I’ve taken the time to reflect on whether these terms made economic sense to me and whether or not I can afford them. Alot of people it seems did not do this. Yet those people who blindly signed on the dotted line are essentially being let off the hook while everyone else has to pick up the tab. If these idiots hadn’t signed on for mortgages that a monkey would have known they couldn’t afford, all this bad debt wouldn’t have been able to filter into the financial system leavign us where we are today – with the gov’t being the final repository of a massive amount of IOU’s.
    So the market didn’t really punish anyone that acted irresponsibly, which is what it should have been allowed to do in the first place.

  28. Sorry if this long question has left you with sore lips.

    lol

    people who have that “the ‘market’ will punish them” attitude are teh silli.

  29. Conservatism in America?

    There’s hardly enough material there for a decent short story.

  30. Andy wrote “even if McCain wins I rate her chances of ever becoming President as much lower than average for a VP. ”

    Nah, if he wins, I bet the GOP base starts agitating for McCain to step down – but not until Palin would be eligible to finish McCain’s term and still run for two of her own. (Assuming there’s some kind of restriction on that and McCain can’t just step down the day after the inauguration.)

  31. It isn’t clear from Doherty’s book review whether Gottfried gets this, but the fact that modern conservatism is “contrived” and a “media phenomenon…a situational function, that of framing policies for the Republican Party and contributing to the administrative staff of Republican administrations.” was a deliberate project begun in the late 60s. The effort to create a “counter-intelligensia” in the form of phony think tanks and publishing houses – which is where most modern conservative thought comes from – was quite openly described by its architects.

    It turned out to be a good move politically, as it helped to win elections and build a movement, but it’s left the Right intellectually bereft. They don’t bother to ask “What is true? What is right?” anymore. They just put out propaganda for whatever the party line is at the moment.

  32. They just put out propaganda for whatever the party line is at the moment.

    Not to mention providing hilarious John Stewart clips. Remember the juxtapostiion of Karl Rove dissing Delaware as being puny and inconsequential and then a few weeks later expounding on the awesomeness of Wasilla?

    BTW, I would like to welcome Edward/MK2/Leftiti back to Hit and Run. There is a rule of thumb that a guy who keeps changing his name on a message board is probably full os hit; the only way he can get people to listen to him is to change his name and start fresh. I ask my fellow HNR denizens to not apply this rule the EML. Because

    1) His posts are teh funny,
    2) Having acquired Urkobold by means of his vicory in the libel lawsuit, Edward could shut them down in a fit of pique.

    The potential loss of Urkobold worries me most. How else will I keep up on the activities of monkeys, Mr Sulu, and the evil physics types?

    So really Edward.. I mean Leftiti, we love you baby. Please don’t go away.

  33. Neocons have a perpetual feedback loop of the Rape of Nanking and the Munich Accords playing in their pathetic excuses for brains. They can’t even get an erection unless they’re jacking off to a copy of Winston Churchill’s *Gathering Storm.* American soldiers, and foreign men, women and children, pay the price.

    Mad Max, we disagree a lot, but that comment wins.

    Notice how they totally wipe any lessons that might be gleamed from July, 1914 out of their brains as well.

  34. Or, for that matter, October 1962.

    TallDave would have been like Curtis LeMay and begging Kennedy to start invading Cuba.

  35. At least all us proles get the chance to line up for urine purity tests, so teh evil dope fiends can’t get a job to pay taxes to bail out the lying, greedy cocksuckers who took our nation for trillions (thousand billion) of dollars. Hooray for free markets national socialism.

    Privatize the profits and socialize the losses so the bastards who sold our nation down the river can renew their country club memberships and buy some expensive wines. At least they weren’t smoking cannabis, so it’s OK.

    This is the only reason I’m glad I’m underemployed, I’m paying a fourth of what I did 2 years ago in taxes. It’s a struggle, but I didn’t destroy anyone’s life like these bastards and I can sleep at night.

    I voted Libertarian every election since 1992, but the nomination of Bob Barr has caused me to question my loyalty to people who do not care about individual liberty. These sorry cocksuckers have convinced me to vote for Obama.

    I don’t make enough money to pay much in taxes, so I’m willing to take handouts from the government, It’s good enough for the pin stripped bandits, it’s good enough for me.

  36. @zig zag man:

    Typical loser Obama supporter. Since when did teenagers get the right to vote? Have fun buying dope with my tax money. Idiot.

  37. @The Recording Angel:
    He seems to agree that Palin is a good candidate. Maybe she was selected to win back a certain demographic that had been lost. That’s politics. (Picking a candidate that appeals to voters – imagine!) Weren’t you paying attention when Obama suddenly came out of nowhere, with no real ideas, just because he was selected by the Illinois machine and the media? At least Palin has libertarian principles. I am a libertarian, and I think she’s a hell of a lot better than Barr.

    Palin is the governor of Alaska, the most libertarian state in the nation. She’s strong on guns, defense, self-reliance, family, offshore drilling, and freedom to believe what you want, even if it’s – gasp – Christianity. If you buy the whole “white-trash nutjob” scenario, you’ve bought into another liberal smear campaign. She may not be “seasoned” like that corrupt idiot Biden, but she’s a true outsider, and that’s what we need in Washington. What’s wrong with a candidate that resonates with the south and the heartland? Are we all “white trash”?

    @gmatts:
    Do you even watch Hannity?

    Listen, granola munchers. We didn’t start the war on terror, al Qaeda did, and we can’t just call it off. We’re in Iraq, and no matter what BHO thinks, we need to win this thing. This war against Islamic fascism will get a hell of a lot more expensive if we decide to lose it. McCain is a military strategist, and Palin is a military mom. Unlike the Obamabots, they both want to win quickly and with honor.

    McCain isn’t the best Republican candidate, but Palin is excellent, and anything is better than Obama. We need to realize that we ARE conservative. We are the future of the conservative movement. This is our time, and, as the Palin nomination shows, things are going our way. But if we can’t back a winner, we’ll end up in Obamastan. Your conspiracy theories have nothing on the reality of the damage that idiot would do to our country.

  38. Palin’s swirling the bowl. It’s funny watching the people most given towards the assumption that they represent “real Americans” end up so marginalized from what actual Americans think.

  39. We didn’t start the war on terror, al Qaeda did, and we can’t just call it off.

    O rly? At the risk of being seen as anti-American or un-Patriotic or what-the-fuck-ever, I think untangling cause and effect and fault and first movement on “Terror” is too difficult to just say “IT’S ALL THEIR FAULT! RRAUGH!”

    America has been fucking with small countries for a long time. We depose unfriendly democratic rulers and replace them with friendly (to us, not to their people) dictators. It would be *shocking* to me, as a historical thing, if someone from one of those anthills hadn’t by this time came over and tried to bite us in the heel.

    This does not in any way mitigate the evil of terrorists, blah blah blah, standard disclaimer and all that. But it shocks me just how much historical ignorance goes into a statement like “We didn’t start the war on terror, al Qaeda did”. I don’t think it is a helpful habit to be in if one wishes to actually confront terrorists and win. It is always nice to know what *Actually* motivates one’s enemies, what grievances they nurse in their black little hearts.

  40. joe,

    Idiot redneck trailer trash are Americans too. Your comment seems to argue that they aren’t, and that’s no more fair than saying that latte-sipping limp-wristed green obsessed Vermonters are not also American.

    😉

  41. Do you even watch Hannity?

    It’s a sad world when O’Reilly can outclass you on decent interviewing of candidates.

    Compared to O’Reilly’s grilling of Obama, Hannity’s brown-nosing performance with Palin was disgraceful.

  42. Miller is the new Neil, right? Hit & Run has definitely honed my fake poster alert skills.

    And is anyone else annoyed by Gottfried’s article on Palin–and also the Buchanan one that was linked? They call her Sarah like she’s their fucking sister or something. Show some fucking respect and call her by her goddamn last name.

  43. since when did teenagers get the right to vote?

    Um, July 1, 1971?. Some of them, at least.

  44. “Typical loser Obama supporter. Since when did teenagers get the right to vote? Have fun buying dope with my tax money. Idiot.”

    What constructive criticism. I am in awe of your articulate response and await more of your wisdom on how the Republicans are going to allow the economy to fix itself with its hands off approach to the market give handouts to all of their rich corporate contributors.

    I’m 46 years old, not some teenager, I served 8 years in the service, got a Masters of Science Degree and held a job for 15 years after that.

    I’m sick of the damned republicans telling me that they are the party of smaller government and no handouts while saying that a non-violent, victimless activity that I enjoy makes me a criminal. At least with Obama, you know what you are in for, bigger government (like we don’t have that already) and more taxes for the rich cocksuckers who can damn sure afford it.

  45. McCain is a military strategist, and Palin is a military mom.

    This cracks me up. I’ll give McCain some credit as I think he went to a war college as most officers that achieved his rank do.

    But ‘military mom?’ So, everything she knows is from her son’s basic training experiences retold at Christmas dinner?

    Miller, keep up the good work. Although the Hokies didn’t blow it this time, so I didn’t need the cheering up, I might need it when they choke in the future.

  46. We are the future of the conservative movement. This is our time,

    Oh, your that dude from Goonies. Weird, I thought you’d be left of center.

  47. but she’s a true outsider, and that’s what we need in Washington.

    Unlike McCain?

    Oh, that’s right, you put McCain aside, the dude that is *actually* running for president of these here united states.

  48. Oh, that’s right, you put McCain aside, the dude that is *actually* running for president of these here united states.

    To be fair, everyone has been distracted on both sides of the aisle by that lustrous empty object, Sarah Palin. Next to her, it really is hard to pay attention to McCain again. Watching her is like watching a really nice sports car crash into a tree in slow motion.

  49. The McCain campaign insisted they change the rules of the Vice Presidential debates to make them easier for Sarah Palin.

    You know what’s funny? Nobody has accused me of panicking in days.

  50. “Andy, well said on Palin. An empty skirt.

    Wow, how substantive! Dazzle us with that mean intellect.”

    OK TAO, I’ll expand: she’s uneducated and not very bright, offering no well thought ideas of her own to the race. Does that help?

    And, uh, the comment was agreeing with Andy Craig who set out the substantive point I was agreeing with about three posts above mine you quote. I know you are an intellectually lazy man TAO, but certainly you can figure out how to scroll up…

  51. “The McCain campaign insisted they change the rules of the Vice Presidential debates to make them easier for Sarah Palin.”

    joe that is like, sexist or like elitist or something. Reform! First dude! I’ve shot a gun!

  52. MNG
    A 4 year degree from a State college is “uneducated”, no matter what she has read and learned outside an educational institution?

    Kind of elitist aren’t you?

  53. Yeah, anti-“elitism”! That’s the ticket!

  54. I’m sure calling anyone without a graduate degree
    “unqualified” will go over real well with the American voters. They revere their betters and don’t want any commoners making decisions for them.

  55. SIV, the day the Republican Party endorsed John Edwards-esque populism with Sarah Palin is the day they jumped the shark.

  56. “I’m sure calling anyone without a graduate degree “unqualified” will go over real well with the American voters. They revere their betters and don’t want any commoners making decisions for them.”

    SIV
    Unlike yourself I’m not trying to shill for the Dems or anyone here, I don’t think my comments are going to sway anyone to vote for who I prefer. So I can just honestly say what I think about someone like Palin, namely that her educational accomplishments are less than impressive.

    About 1/3+ of Americans have a B.S. That does not make Palin stand out much, now does it?

    But to be honest I don’t think she’s dumb for that reason alone, plenty of intellectual giants have had less formal education. But when you hear her talk do you really think “wow, that lady is a thinker?” I mean, Lynne Cheney, that’s a smart conservative woman. Palin? Get real.

  57. MNG, you’re a snobbish elitist! ELITE!

  58. Episiarch—Yup, I was on a sabbatical from March-Sept, writing a book on the Heller case that will be out in November, Gun Control on Trial. Pre-order now!
    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1933995254/reasonmagazinea-20/

  59. “@gmatts:
    Do you even watch Hannity?”

    Yeah, occasionaly I do. And sometimes I’ll even put his radio show on if I’m in my car and am in need of a laugh. If you’re a big Hannity fan – maybe you’re even “Hannitized” – perhaps you can help me sort something out about him. I’m having a hard time deciding which line of questioning of his I like more. Is it a) the way he asks a 2 minute question and then demands a yes or no answer, as if he’s conducting a Scantron exam. Or is b) the way he has the answer he desires first, then just has to work on the questions?

    You’re a great American.

    “Listen, granola munchers. We didn’t start the war on terror, al Qaeda did, and we can’t just call it off. We’re in Iraq, and no matter what BHO thinks, we need to win this thing. This war against Islamic fascism will get a hell of a lot more expensive if we decide to lose it. McCain is a military strategist, and Palin is a military mom. Unlike the Obamabots, they both want to win quickly and with honor.”

    I think that my JV football coach in high school gave me that same type speech many years ago.

  60. If McCain wins Sarah Palin is next in the line of Presidential succession.After the Alaska Governor is the likely Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.Can anyone argue that Ms Pelosi is any more “intellectually qualified”?

  61. Pelosi went to Trinity University IIRC. But hey, she was the daughter of Baltimore Mayor Tommy D’Alesandro, the most politically crooked SOB this side of the Mississippi. That must qualify her for something!

    Seriously, D’Alesandro was the Team Blue Spiro Agnew.

  62. And sometimes I’ll even put his radio show on if I’m in my car and am in need of a laugh. If you’re a big Hannity fan – maybe you’re even “Hannitized” – perhaps you can help me sort something out about him.

    I agree that the show is funny, but probably not for the same reasons you do. It’s a tough crowd, and lot of lightweights can’t take it. His questions are long because he needs to let them know that he understands their positions. (Most of them come on the show thinking he’s an idiot.) Then he goes in for a quick kill. He’s an attack dog. I don’t always agree with him, but he’s got a point of view, and substance. And he’s a big success because of the free market. Can you say the same for the “objective” liberal (N)PR?

    As for the Palin interview, do you really think calling her a “pinup queen” is objective journalism? No politician in our time has EVER gotten as much flak as Palin. (I wonder why?) I’m glad someone finally gave her a platform without a trap door.

    I think that my JV football coach in high school gave me that same type speech many years ago.

    Did you listen?

  63. “No politician in our time has EVER gotten as much flak as Palin”

    Really? She’s been on the nat’l stage for about 5 minutes and has made no attempt to make her views about things known. Perhaps your definition of “in our time” would be of use.

    “I’m glad someone finally gave her a platform without a trap door.”

    After watching Hannity interview Palin was there anything new that you learned about her, or more importantly her positions (besides her desire to “shake things up” and “ruffle some feathers”)?

  64. Conservative, Liberal, Republican, Democrat, Whats the difference. We need a proven leader that can LEAD the country. All we have are politicians that LIE, cheat and STEAL. When are the Sheeple going to say enough is ENOUGH?

    Jiff
    http://www.anonymize.us.tc

  65. Miller=Neil. No one else is willing to fellate Hannity that willingly.

  66. Free market fundamentalists of the world unite! You have nothing to lose.

  67. His questions are long because he needs to let them know that he understands their positions.

    Man, I can’t even think of anything clever to put in the name field, that shit is so funny.

  68. A 4 year degree from a State college is “uneducated”, no matter what she has read and learned outside an educational institution?

    Fair enough. I mean, didn’t she just dazzle us all with her impressive intellectual scope during that Charles Gibson interview?

    Can anyone argue that Ms Pelosi is any more “intellectually qualified”? Yes, rather easily. It takes about five minutes worth of video showing each of them speak. It is a testament to your blinders that you would consider it good idea to draw that comparison.

  69. Oh come on joe, Palin showed a lot of brains in this answer.

    If you can’t see how brilliant she is there, you must be one of those EasternElites Mitt Romney talked about

    /sarcasm

  70. BDB
    I tend to think that when someone is on the campaign trail speaking every day even the brightest people will fumble now and then and in our media scene it will be caught and played over and over, and so such moments are not very defining.

    But man, that was funny! Thanks

  71. MNG–

    That wasn’t a slip up (“fifty-seven states”), that was called Bullshitting. And she’s not very good at it.

  72. I once shit the bed at a public event like that, and my boss had to come up and rescue me. He looked exactly like John McCain did in that video clip – he had exactly the same expression on his face.

  73. I need cock! Mmm Mmm! Cock! *sucking sounds*

  74. Joe-

    Yeah, but were you speaking on a subject you had been touted as an “expert” on?

  75. No, BDB, I was a rookie being sent out for my first test run, and not in any sort of senior position at all.

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