30 September 2008

They said the worst was yet to come

And, boy howdy, were they right.

It was only a few days ago that the WaPo's Howie Kurtz let slip that all the shoes had not yet dropped from Sarah Palin's cringe-inducing interview with CBS' Katie Couric.

He wasn't kidding:

You really have to see it to believe it.
COURIC: And when it comes to establishing your world view, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read, before you were tapped for this, to stay informed and to understand the world?

PALIN: I've read most of them again with a great appreciation for the press for the media, I mean...

COURIC: Like what ones specifically? I'm curious that you...

PALIN: Um, all of 'em, any of 'em that um have been in front of me over all these years, um...

COURIC: Can you name any of them?

PALIN: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news too. Alaska isn't a foreign country where it's kind of suggested it seems like, wow how could you keep in touch with what the rest of Washington, DC may be thinking and doing, when you live up there in Alaska. Believe me, Alaska is like a microcosm of America.
A microcosm of America...without print media, apparently.

She cannot name a single periodical or news source that she consults on a regular basis. I'm sure neither she nor the campaign are thrilled with her Saturday Night Live "appearances," but is the answer really to offer responses so absurd, that they're beyond satire?

We've veered into Celebrity Jeopardy territory here, folks.

28 September 2008

27 September 2008

Saturday Shuffle

Black Jesus - Ghostface Killah
Tiptoe (live) - Ani DiFranco
Locomotive - Thelonious Monk
Dock of the Bay - Otis Redding
No Awareness - Dr. Octagon
Bleed the Freak (demo) - Alice In Chains
Monkey Man - The Specials
Demonomania - The Misfits
Hypnosis - New Order
Head to Wall - Quicksand

26 September 2008

Quote(s) of the Day

Chris Rock, appearing on Larry King Live:
KING: You must be ... proud that at this stage in our history a black man is running for president on a major ticket.

ROCK: Um, you know what? I'm proud Barack Obama's running for president. You know? If it was Flavor Flav, would I be proud? No. I don't support Barack Obama because he's black.
And a close second:
"The choice isn't Republican or Democrat. The choice is you got a guy that's worth $150 million with 12 houses against a guy who's worth a million dollars with one house...The guy with one house really cares about losing a house, because he is homeless. The other guy can lose five houses and still got a bunch of houses. Does this make any sense? Am I the only one that sees this?"

25 September 2008

Demanding a coherent response is SO sexist

Words fail (starting with her, apparently):
COURIC: You've cited Alaska's proximity to Russia as part of your foreign policy experience. What did you mean by that?

PALIN: That Alaska has a very narrow maritime border between a foreign country, Russia, and on our other side, the land-- boundary that we have with-- Canada. It-- it's funny that a comment like that was-- kind of made to-- cari-- I don't know, you know? Reporters--


PALIN: Yeah, mocked, I guess that's the word, yeah.

COURIC: Explain to me why that enhances your foreign policy credentials.

PALIN: Well, it certainly does because our-- our next door neighbors are foreign countries. They're in the state that I am the executive of. And there in Russia--

COURIC: Have you ever been involved with any negotiations, for example, with the Russians?

PALIN: We have trade missions back and forth. We-- we do-- it's very important when you consider even national security issues with Russia as Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where-- where do they go? It's Alaska. It's just right over the border. It is-- from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there. They are right next to-- to our state.

This is just getting scary. Nowhere does she come anywhere near an intelligible answer to the question that Couric posed to her.

"Our next door neighbors are foreign countries. They're in the state that I am the executive of?"

Sweet, merciful crap.

Now, I don't believe Palin to be unintelligent, but she is so clearly out of her depth when called upon to reposnd with anything other than a stock campaign talking point, that's precisely the image that she projects.  An appearance like this would be an utter embarassment for any public official, to say nothing of a candidate for the vice presidency.  It's made all the worse by the unheard of media blackout the McCain camp is trying to enforce through Palin's almost non-existant press availability.  These aren't off-the-cuff responses to questions shouted from across a lobby; this is a carefully established, pre-arranged encounter.  In a setting such as that, every rambling non-answer further cements the notion that the already eyebrow-raising (and now borderline patronizing) efforts to shield her from the press, are not due to any inappropriate media scrutiny, but because any scrutiny, whatsoever, reveals her to be shockingly unprepared, if not downright incompetant. 

For the McPalin campaign, "Not ready to lead" is looking less like an attack and more like an admission, every day.

24 September 2008

The shortest of leashes

What was that about a "pitbull?" Via Politico:
McCain then looked around the room and gestured as if to welcome questions. The AP reporter shouted a question at Gov. Palin (“Governor, what have you learned from your meetings?”) but McCain aide Brooke Buchanan intervened and shepherded everybody out of the room.

Palin looked surprised, leaned over to McCain and asked him a question, to which your pooler thinks he shook his head as if to say "No."
We've long heard that the McCain camp's near-pathological aversion to Sarah Palin having any dealings with reporters (those who aren't appropriately deferential, anyway) was a response to the "sexist" treatment she received upon entering the race. Leaving aside the fact that the vast majority of questions--about experience, background, etc.--had nothing to do with gender, there was definitely a subset of people who stirred the pot with faux-concerned questions that all boiled down to "however will she balance the demands of the vice presidency with being a mother, and with a special-needs child, at that?"

Some of them, undoubtedly, were self-proclaimed progressives who, just as undoubtedly, thought they were so clever for hoisting (some) conservatives on their own anti-working mother petard.

Too clever by half.

It's a bullshit point that they'd scream bloody murder over if it was made about their candidate, and--no matter what far-right hypocrisy it may illustrate--they should be ashamed for attempting to inject it into the discourse. Nietzsche, anyone? To traffick in such dreck, for whatever the purpose, is to perpetuate textbook sexism: that line of reasoning would never be applied to a male candidate in a million years.

Which brings us back to this latest McCain campaign embarrassment.

Have you ever seen a staffer abruptly clear a room and someone actively prevent a male candidate from answering a reporter's question? It would be unthinkable. It would be a high insult; a tacit admission that the individual isn't trusted--or, worse, allowed--to speak for himself.

Yet the newly gender-conscious McCain organizaation thinks nothing of doing just that and completely infantilizing its own vice presidential pick.

Good luck courting those female voters and Clinton diehards, Johnny, I'm sure they just loved that.

Quote of the Day

"It's the longest Hail Mary pass in the history of either football or Marys."
Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) responding to John McCain's announcement that he'll suspend his campaign to grandstand "focus on the crisis" facing the economy.

20 September 2008

Saturday Shuffle

I Hate Mornings - The Exceptions
Lapdance - Paul Oakenfold
Elite - Deftones
Comin' Atcha Live/Truckin' (live) - Tesla
Mr. Brownstone (live) - Guns N' Roses
No Time to Cry - The Sisters of Mercy
Wicked Game - Chris Isaak
Sweetest Perfection - Depeche Mode
Cherub Rock - Smashing Pumpkins
I Would For You (demo) - Jane's Addiction

13 September 2008

Saturday Shuffle

U.S. Government - Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Don't Let Me Down - The Beatles
Say it Loud I'm Black, I'm Proud - James Brown
No. 13 - The Cult
Harper and the Midget (live) - Twinemen
Rosetta Stoned - Tool
Crucify [Remix] - Tori Amos
Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses - U2
Dig a Pony - The Beatles
Beside You in Time - Nine Inch Nails

09 September 2008

About Time...

Few more of these, please:

The Obama camp has been utterly derelict in their response to Johnnie Mac's commitment to go all negative, all of the time. After a convention's worth of "I respect John McCain...," and " I honor John McCain's service," it's long overdue to leave that cringing nonsense behind and focus on Candidate McCain and hit him and James Dobson's dream vice president--hard.

And, it must be noted, this was an excellent start:

08 September 2008

06 September 2008

Saturday Shuffle

By The Time I Get To Arizona - Public Enemy
Stand By Your Man - Me First and the Gimme Gimmes
I'll Be Your Jonny on the Spot (live) - Ween
The New Clean Song - Crispin Hellion Glover
Down the Line - Johnny Cash
The Sing Remains the Same - Led Zeppelin
Once Upon a Time - Robert Bradley's Blackwater Surprise
Pimpf (live) - Depeche Mode
Your Llorona - Concrete Blonde
Soundtrack to Mary (live) - Mike Doughty

03 September 2008

Ever seen a man's credibility vanish into thin air?

Thank you, Mr. "Noun-Verb-9/11".
ST. PAUL, Minn. - Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani says if Sarah Palin had been president when the U.S. came under attack on Sept. 11, 2001, he's confident she would have been able to handle the crisis.

Palin's experience as the mayor of a tiny Alaska town and as Alaska's governor for less than two years have led critics to question her readiness to be vice president in a John McCain administration - and president should he be unable to continue serving.

In an interview Wednesday on ABC's "Good Morning America," Giuliani was asked, "If she were the president on 9/11, you would have been confident?"

Giuliani responded: "I'd be confident that she'd be able to handle it. She's been a governor of a state, she's been mayor of a city."

With that utterly asinine observation, you've officially removed yourself from the list of people whose opinions should be given any weight, whatsoever.

I'm not sure whether to feel sorry that you're that clueless, or completely offended that you think we are.

Here's the wind-up...

And the pitch :
Rick Davis, campaign manager for John McCain's presidential bid, insisted that the presidential race will be decided more over personalities than issues during an interview with Post editors this morning.

"This election is not about issues," said Davis. "This election is about a composite view of what people take away from these candidates."
Looooooong Gone!:
“Which probably explains why last night when they were speaking, all these speakers [at the Republican National Convention] came up, you didn’t hear a single word about the economy,” Obama said at an economic forum in New Philadelphia, Ohio. “Not once did people mention the hardships that people are going through.”

“I guess I don’t blame them,” Obama added, “because if you don’t have any issues to run on, you want it all to be about personality. If you have got George Bush’s track record and John McCain voting 90 percent of the time in agreement with George Bush, then you probably you don’t want to talk about issues either.”
Come to think of it, that wasn't even a pitch; it was pretty much served up on a tee.

02 September 2008

The Milquetoast Maverick

Setting aside Sarah Palin's ethical problems, pork project funneling, and the laughable job of "vetting" that was done in the rush to add her to the ticket, this story is a sobering look at the judgment that that John McCain is so desperately campaigning on:

Up until midweek last week, some 48 to 72 hours before Mr. McCain introduced Ms. Palin at a Friday rally in Dayton, Ohio, Mr. McCain was still holding out the hope that he could choose a good friend, Senator Joseph I. Lieberman, independent of Connecticut, a Republican close to the campaign said. Mr. McCain had also been interested in another favorite, former Gov. Tom Ridge of Pennsylvania.

But both men favor abortion rights, anathema to the Christian conservatives who make up a crucial base of the Republican Party. As word leaked out that Mr. McCain was seriously considering the men, the campaign was bombarded by outrage from influential conservatives who predicted an explosive floor fight at the convention and vowed rejection of Mr. Ridge or Mr. Lieberman by the delegates.

Perhaps more important, several Republicans said, Mr. McCain was getting advice that if he did not do something to shake up the race, his campaign would be stuck on a potentially losing trajectory.

With time running out — and as Mr. McCain discarded two safer choices, Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts, as too predictable — he turned to Ms. Palin. He had his first face-to-face interview with her on Thursday and offered her the job moments later. Advisers to Mr. Pawlenty and another of the finalists on Mr. McCain’s list described an intensive vetting process for those candidates that lasted one to two months.

“They didn’t seriously consider her until four or five days from the time she was picked, before she was asked, maybe the Thursday or Friday before,” said a Republican close to the campaign. “This was really kind of rushed at the end, because John didn’t get what he wanted. He wanted to do Joe or Ridge.”

This is the who Joe Lieberman (consider the source, I know) thinks "is his own man?"

He threw over the people--even you, personally, Joe--that he felt were best qualified and most desirable for his administration in order to kow-tow to anti-choice zealots with someone he hardly knows, and you laud him for being "his own man?"

The makebelieve Maverick is looking a helluva lot more like Daddy Dobson's man from where I'm sitting.

Following the divisiveness of the primaries, and the exceptional speech given by HRC at the convention, the pressure for Obama to reconsider the "Dream Ticket" must've been considerable. It would've been the mother of all olive branches to the still-substanital--not to mention, still stewing--base of Clintonista voters and donors. While, admittedly, not a perfectly analogous situation to McCain's, he looked a similar moment of pander in the eye and



Do it.

Whereas Johnnie Mac did his best impression of a card table, and folded.

To appropriate a saying: No judgment. No Spine. Not ready to lead.

The boys are thirsty in Atlanta, and there's beer in Texarcana

Jerry Reed, 1937-2008

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