THE FIRST ONE SET THE BAR TOO HIGH
. Too high for me, Brizoni, anyway.
5:38 PM (PST)
State of the Union starts at six! We know the President thinks we're stupid, but how stupid, exactly
? We'll find out in 30 minutes. Stay tuned.
Here we go. ABC radio has an inspirational montage to start us off. Sounds like an Oscar montage.
ABC analyst urges us to "put aside what he says" and weigh how Presidential he is saying it. Uh, no. Not how a conscious nation rolls, lady.
Stop applauding! This isn't Stalin's Russia. Get on with it.
"Maybe if I lull them to sleep in the first few minutes, they'll ignore the rest! I'm so much smarter than America!"
"You know what else they share? They share a stubborn resilience in the face of adversity." That adversity would be you, sir. You and every other official who thinks it's their business to "solve our problems." We want you to get out of our way.
I trust I don't have to inform the reader that "fear or divison" is code for partisan politics, which InstaPunk's founder defined
so deftly as "The strenuous advocacy of any political position not favored by the person on camera right now." By the same token, whenever he talks about losing touch with the American people, he's really bemoaning the fact that we idiots have stopped believing his narrative.
Muther...! No one wanted the bank bailout? To paraphrase Joe Wilson, my ass
May have blown my Joe Wilson wad too soon. He's citing numbers of jobs saved and "recovered." Any chance these numbers will hold up to scrutiny? I give them 2 hours before they're debunked. Maybe.
"Economists on the left and on the right" is a phrase of rare candor. It implies that economics isn't a settled science. Weird admission for a leftist.
Is that booing I hear for a new jobs bill? Or is my AM radio playing tricks on me? If not, good.
NUCLEAR POWER? OFFSHORE DRILLING! He's teasing my dick.
Oh, nevermind. Climate bill. As you were.
Mr. President, the only "overwhelming evidence" is for the scientific mainstream having committed the largest fraud in its history
. Republicans, it's OK to boo this clown. Your constituency doesn't want you to hold back anymore.
It's so condescending when AGW crazies defend economy-crippling clean energy proposals as a matter of competition. It'd be a little less offensive, and a little more logical, if he just declared "We need green energy because YOUR FAVORITE SPORTS TEAM RULES!"
Rhetorical shift. "Universal Health Care" is now "Health Care Reform." A savvy lowering of expectations. Lets his base save face by telling themselves this is what they wanted all along.
What did Ben Franklin say about security? It's good? Government should give us more of it? I forget the exact wording.
"By the time I’m finished speaking tonight, more Americans will have lost their health insurance." You bet. Thousands every second. Better put the government in charge of more stuff. Their fixing-things record is... unimpeachable.
Health care reform would reduce our deficit? You mean, like how Medicare is totally solvent? And isn't going bankrupt next year?
The big reneg of the night was leaked earlier, but it's still worth gloating over. Click and laugh
He called for common sense! I don't have TV. Did he say that with a straight face? The audacity of arrogance, more like.
Now he's calling for transparency
? And lobbyists
are the source so much government secrecy? And he's boasting of HIS transparency? I say this in a completely non-racist way: Nigga please!
Nuh-uh. No way. No one's so elitist he really believes the average man simply has no memory. No way this guy thinks no one's seen the video that catches his lying ass red-handed
I saw this coming. This is the new age of rhetorical warfare: Audacity as a bludgeon. The aim is to logjam the observant citizen's critical faculty with so much BS, he doesn't know where to begin, and hopefully gives up.
I'm just about there myself, to be totally honest. It's too much horsecrap too quick. What was I thinking, trying to debunk it all on the fly. Even InstaPunk didn't want to take this on.
And there it is. He just invoked 9/11. Time for me to take a 24-hour puke break.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Worth a Second Look
This clip has been kicking around for years now, re-captioned whenever
some new disaster strikes the political scene. When Eduardo tossed this
version into the Comments section, I didn't even watch it. Until today.
Now I think it's interesting. Why? Because 'Hitler' isn't Obama, which
is what I'd assumed before I watched. He's someone else. Who? Maybe the
editor or publisher of The New York
. Maybe Harry Reid. Or George Soros. All of which means
we're being asked to identify the real
left-wing power structure that's pulling the strings behind the scenes.
Besides which, the captioning is spot-on: deft, clever, and beautifully
timed. It's a keeper, this one.
Part of my resistance had to do with the inefficacy of the Hitler
analogy. Yes, I know that Hitler's national socialism was more left
than right, but nobody knows anything anymore, and I guess I've been
willing to live with that. Which leads me to a second Second Look
recommendation. Glenn Beck's documentary "The
I didn't tune in. To me it was all old, old, old. Good that Beck is
educating himself about the most horrifying leftist regimes of the
twentieth century, but anybody who pretends he doesn't know how it was
is just lying to himself and everyone else, right?
Wrong. I should have known. The people who wear the Che
have NO idea. Beck is right. The glaring, inescapable
truth about these regimes has been suppressed, even at Harvard, Yale,
and Berkeley. Soooooooooo depressing. But true. Thank you, Glenn Beck.
What's that saying about how a child shall lead them? Can't remember
it. But dead on in this case. DEAD on.
Even if you think you know the history, watch "The
." All of it. Then email the links to all
people you know you
think know the history. Admit right up front that Glenn Beck is a
maniac. Then tell them to watch it anyway.
Like I'm doing here. You see, it's not as hard as it seems. Even a
maniac can perform a public service. Like Glenn Beck just did.
Smerconish Hears the
Michael Smerconish, man of principle.
He would never pander to his audience.
Below, we say something about 'sorry
ass.' Apologies up front for that. Sorry.
On the long list of things we're tired of, Michael Smerconish
well, on the list. How perfectly appropriate that he would play along
with the latest Democrat gambit of defending Obama via sock
A letter defending Obama, over the
signature of one "Ellie Light,"
drew some attention after it became clear that the same letter had been
published in some 60 outlets,
listing different, local hometowns in different newspapers.
The episode provoked various theories
around the Internet, including
that the letter writer was, in fact, Barack Obama himself. I first published
he letter because it seemed to crystallize an argument that Democrats
were struggling to make. Light wrote:
But today, the president is being
attacked as if he were a salesman
who promised us that our problems would wash off in the morning. He
never made such a promise. It's time for Americans to realize that
governing is hard work, and that a president can't just wave a magic
wand and fix everything.
Well, the mystery may be over. A woman
who said her name was, in
fact, Ellie Light called this morning into the radio show of Michael
Smerconish, a national talker based in Philadelphia who has been
friendly to Obama, to clear things up.
"I'm only me," she said, identifying
herself as a traveling nurse
who works for 13-week stretches at hospitals around the country, and
whose primary residence is in Southern California.
"I need to own up – I did misrepresent my
home town in some places,"
Light told Smerconish. Her logic in faking the addresses is one
familiar to advocacy groups: "If I thought it was written by a neighbor
of mine, I would give it more credence."
Light mused on why the letter was so
widely circulated: "My letter
was pretty darn good. It took a long time to write. I took more
interest in honing it than most people take today."
"I don't know why others are not making
the observation that, Why
are we all abandoning the president we so adored so quickly?" she said.
Is it serendicity
again? I've been thinking about Smerconish. After
all, he's the one-time Republican who endorsed Obama to a Philadelphia
radio audience that went 95 percent to 25 percent (yeah, Philadelphia
poll watchers see DEAD people, routinely)
back in November 2008. His argument at the time was that Obama was more
serious about catching Osama bin Laden than McCain was. Right. Which is
why we thought of Smerconish when Robert Gibbs said this the other day:
You know, to us
, it sounds
like the Obama administration has come to regard bin Laden pretty much
the way the Bush administration did -- as an annoying figurehead who's
less trouble where he is than he'd be if we actually caught his sorry
ass. Yeah, McCain didn't want to capture him either, because it'd be
bad publicity if a president shot a prisoner point blank in the head
with a .45 instead of putting him in touch with a crack criminal
attorney from Chicago. Which is undoubtedly why Smerconish decided
Obama was so
much more trustworthy on all matters pertaining to al qaida and the War
on Terror. Unless it had something to do with the political
propensities of his Philadelphia radio audience instead. How's that
working out for you about now, Mikey?
We think about Smerconish because we never ever
listen to Smerconish.
He's the best living proof that moderates
are not necessarily safe or sane. They can be way creepy too. Like Smerconish
The REAL value of
Freedom from accountability
Himself. Ain't we smart?
. God knows, we've criticized
William F. Buckley here in
the past, but at least the man was consistent with his own line of
argument. Now we get THIS
which is as shocking as it is stupid:
Beast columnist Christopher Buckley procured an early
draft of President Obama’s
upcoming State of the Union speech.
My fellow Americans,
Tonight I can report to you that the state of the union, on a scale of
1 to 10, 10 being excellent, is a 9.8.
Now, you may ask—and I wouldn’t blame you for asking—how I came up with
that number. You might be saying to yourself, “Wait a minute. I’ve got
no job, no health insurance. My house isn’t worth half the amount of my
mortgage, and I just got called up by the National Guard to do a fifth
tour in Afghanistan. How the heck did he come up with 9.8?”
So it’s a good and valid question. And the answer is that 9.8 is pretty
good, considering the mess my predecessor and the Republicans left me.
Fair enough? I think so.
A year ago, I inspired the nation to have the audacity to hope that I
would change the political culture in Washington. Now, it turns out I’m
another hack politician.
I want to acknowledge some folks in this chamber here tonight. The
cipher-faced, light-skinned fellow right behind me is Harry Reid,
Senate Majority Leader, from the great state of Nevada, home of
gambling, legal prostitution, and empty nuclear-waste facilities.
Over the last year, Harry has managed to do something I wouldn’t have
dreamt possible: make me look like a total tool of the political
establishment. How did he manage that? How did I manage that?
A year ago, I inspired the nation to have the audacity to hope that I
would change the political culture in Washington. Now, a year later, it
turns out I’m another hack politician—from Chicago, where, believe you
me, we know a thing or two about hack politics.
I was going to set a new standard. Now I’m just a complicit bystander
as Harry bribes, among others, a senator from Nebraska who wants his
state to get a free pass on Medicare—in return for his vote on a
health-care reform bill that would make the Founders weep, or throw up.
What a difference a year makes. But I’m pleased to report that before I
came up here tonight, I was able to sign a contract with my publisher
for a new book. I’m going to call it The Audacity of Oops.
As you know, it is customary procedure, during a State of the Union,
for one Cabinet officer not to attend, so as to provide continuity of
government in the event someone, say, flies a plane into the Capitol
Building or sets off a nuclear bomb or what-have-you. Tonight, you will
be reassured to know that Secretary Janet Napolitano of the Department
of Homeland Security is at an undisclosed location, making sure that,
as she would put it, the system goes on working.
I can further report that Secretary Napolitano has come up with an
ingenious plan to prevent a recurrence of the Christmas bombing
attempt. From now on, all planes flying into the United States will
carry not air marshals but Dutch artists. For we now know that when it
comes to disabling well-born Nigerians attempting to detonate their
underpants, Dutch artists are proven first-responders.
Meanwhile, we must, and will, continue to strip-search 82-year-old
white, Protestant grandmothers and 2-year-olds, lest we annoy the
tender sensibilities of Muslim countries that practice, among other
time-honored religious rituals, genital mutilation of young women, live
burial of homosexuals, and stoning and beheading of adulterous women.
God forbid we should upset them. We’re Americans. We’re better than
And now, let me say a word or two about a subject that I have not had
time to address much this past year, what with arranging summits
between the Cambridge, Massachusetts, police, and aggrieved Harvard
professors, to say nothing of flying to and from Scandinavia to pick up
gold medals—namely, the economy.
Frankly, the economy is not what it should be, which is why the state
of the union is a 9.8 instead of a perfect 10.
I called in the smart folks in my administration, many of them educated
at Harvard, and I put it to them directly. I said, “Is this my fault?”
And to a person they said, “No, sir! No way!”
I said to them, “Well then, whose fault is it?” And they said, “It’s
the bankers, Mr. President. The scum-sucking, stimulus money-accepting,
bonus-awarding, self-regarding swine who inhabit the street of shame
and infamy, the harlot’s den known as Wall Street.”
I said to them, “And what are we going to do about them? We can’t hang
them all. We don’t have enough rope. And anyway, rope is expensive and
I’m trying to cut the deficit. Ideas, people. I want ideas.”
So tonight I can announce to you, my fellow Americans, the creation of
a bipartisan commission to study how to kill the bankers in an
efficient and hemp-sensitive manner.
Now, it is customary on these occasions, after offering the American
people bromides and yes, even downright lies about how well the nation
is doing, to acknowledge American heroes sitting in the gallery.
Unfortunately, no pilots have landed planes in the Hudson River lately,
so we don’t have any of them. But there are a number of Dutch artists
with us tonight…
Which sort of reminds me about the biggest hole there is in media, be
it mainstream or new: NO ACCOUNTING.
I've made predictions here, and I've been more right than not, though I
pretend -- like everyone else -- that I'm always
right. I got that from my
favorite rock band, the Rolling Stones, who started calling themselves
"The Greatest Rock and Roll Band in the World" and repeated it until
everyone consented and repeated it themselves as if it were true.
Now I'm going to beat up on Christopher Buckley. Not because he's the
only malefactor in this venue. But because he's the most evidently
odious one. He said this
in the run-up to the election:
Let me be the latest
conservative/libertarian/whatever to leap onto the Barack Obama
bandwagon. It’s a good thing my dear old mum and pup are no longer
alive. They’d cut off my allowance....
I am—drum roll, please, cue
trumpets—making this announcement in the cyberpages of The Daily Beast
(what joy to be writing for a publication so named!) rather than in the
pages of National Review, where I write the back-page column...
As for Senator Obama: He has exhibited throughout a “first-class
temperament,” pace Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.’s famous comment about
FDR. As for his intellect, well, he’s a Harvard man, though that’s sure
as heck no guarantee of anything, these days. Vietnam was brought to
you by Harvard and (one or two) Yale men. As for our current adventure
in Mesopotamia, consider this lustrous alumni roster. Bush 43: Yale.
Rumsfeld: Princeton. Paul Bremer: Yale and Harvard. What do they all
have in common? Andover! The best and the brightest.
I’ve read Obama’s books, and they are first-rate. He is that rara avis,
the politician who writes his own books. Imagine. He is also a lefty. I
am not. I am a small-government conservative who clings tenaciously and
old-fashionedly to the idea that one ought to have balanced budgets. On
abortion, gay marriage, et al, I’m libertarian....
Obama has in him—I think, despite his sometimes airy-fairy “We are the
people we have been waiting for” silly rhetoric—the potential to be a
good, perhaps even great leader. He is, it seems clear enough, what the
historical moment seems to be calling for.
Now he wants us to read him seriously as a witty commentator on the
state of the Obama presidency. Not buying. Obviously. He's the callow,
fortunate offspring of a much better and wiser man. Not at all
uncommon. Abilities do
to skip generations. His son, if he has one, may well be a force to be
reckoned with. So it's okay that Christopher Buckley is an empty suit.
I'll say no more about it than that.
BUT. In this day and age of 24/7 news coverage, new and old media, and
obsessive coverage of the media as a story commensurate with the news
itself, isn't it time that SOMEBODY started tracking the predictions
so-called pundits make?
I know Rush Limbaugh has an accounting firm on retainer for the purpose
of monitoring his predictions. He's still at 98-plus percentile
accuracy. Yet everywhere else, we're asked to give our faith to
talk-show pundits whose records of past predictions are about as
transparent as the congressional health care negotiations.
Is anybody keeping score on Bob Beckel, Karl Rove, Michelle Malkin,
Arianna Huffington, Lawrence O'Donnell, Dana Perino, Paul Begala, Dick
Morris, Juan Williams, Charles Krauthammer, Andrew Sullivan, Bill
Kristol, and all the other know-it-alls who presume to tell us what is,
might be, and will be? Wouldn't it be great if we could see, as soon as
they open their mouths, how their past predictions have fared in the
context of real outcomes and results? And the rating system should be
scaled and weighted in accordance with the importance of their
predictions and advice. (For example, a pundit who told us to vote for
Obama because he was, uh, cool
should have that prediction hung around
his neck forever.)
Especially when they tell us we're ignorant and uneducated for not
listening to their
received wisdom. Mister
What do we get instead? Smart guys who make a living from predicting
things that never happen. That's what ESPN and the NFL Network are for.
Oddly enough, they
better track of past predictions than the news organizations do. Not
as well as they should
. But better.
All in all, some accountability would be nice. Especially when it comes
down to entities that are "too big to fail." Like the federal
government. Unless you went to the right schools, of course. Meaning there won't ever be ANY accountability for what you blow out your ass. Graduates of Harvard and Yale NEVER fart. Or didn't you know that? Well... just ask Obama. I'm sure the closest he's ever come to a fart is a high-pitched squeak his Princetonian wife thought was a spontaneous expression of delight by yet another NYT columnist.
And so it goes...