Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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September 6, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

DEBATE WRAPUP....I didn't watch the Republican debate last night — Federer-Roddick seemed like a better bet to me — but it sounds like it was a doozy on the Iraq front. Read Klein and Klein for more. Your choice is apparently between "lying," "out to lunch," "deeply misinformed," and "confused."

Kevin Drum 1:56 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (25)

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This post has been up 16 minutes without comment. Kevin that should tell you just how interested we all are in the Republican "debate."

Posted by: corpus juris on September 6, 2007 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

I watched Federer-Roddick as well. Unquestionably this was a better bet than the debate!

Posted by: Tennis fan on September 6, 2007 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

Your choice is apparently between "lying," "out to lunch," "deeply misinformed," and "confused."

—Kevin Drum

If the past is prologue, the candidate who can put together at least two of these strengths will be next president.

Posted by: Econobuzz on September 6, 2007 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

Econobuzz, I was going to simply comment that the current office holder conveniently packages all three in one.

Posted by: Keith G on September 6, 2007 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

I flipped back and forth between the "debate" and the Dodger game (which also should perhaps be set between quote marks) until it became clear that the Cubs were going to win, at which point I left it on Fox. My 21-year-old son, about to start his senior year in college but pretty perceptive nonetheless, joined me on the couch. Consensus in the Ozhead household: what a bunch of turkeys. At least Ron Paul, scary-looking as he is, was there to provide SOME relief from the rest of those gobblers.

Posted by: Ozhead on September 6, 2007 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK

Well one thing we found out from the debate is that Mike Huckabee, despite his sweet Baptist preacher's disposition and warm smile, is a closet fascist. "We have to be one nation under God." So when the Republicans opposed Bill Clinton on so-called "Kosovo War" were they not following the script or were they opposing a stupid war? So what's the difference between opposition to Kosovo and opposition to Iraq?

Why not just say "Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Fuhrer!" Governor? It sounds so much more to the point of your argument.

Thank God there's still one candidate who still belives in freedom: Ron Paul.

Posted by: Sean Scallon on September 6, 2007 at 2:28 PM | PERMALINK

One other thing my son and I agreed on: Best Hair was a tie between Huckabee and Romney. And Rudy has BY FAR the biggest ears.

Posted by: Ozhead on September 6, 2007 at 2:34 PM | PERMALINK

Sean Scallon:Thank God there's still one candidate who still belives in freedom: Ron Paul.

Thank God for Ron Paul there are still a few people willing to overlook his procedural vote record and dealmaking with Repubs (which of course enabled rampant abuse of civil liberties), his anti-choice stance and oher instances of his highly select libertarianism--and still attribute to him a general love of liberty he patently does not possess.

God, save us from people who correctly point out our mainstream candidates are corrupt and untrustworthy, and then attempt to explain with straight faces that their guy is the real deal.

Ozhead: the Dodger game (which also should perhaps be set between quote marks)

Not from my perspective, enjoying a hot dog on a fine summer night at Wrigley. I think craigie owes me some money, though.

Posted by: shortstop on September 6, 2007 at 2:43 PM | PERMALINK

When I drifted down to this post, my eye snagged "lying," "out to lunch," "deeply misinformed," and "confused" and I thought it was all about Al.

h

Posted by: hancock on September 6, 2007 at 2:51 PM | PERMALINK

I really felt for Roddick last night. I've never seen him play so well, but there was never any point where I thought Federer was in any danger of losing the match.

Posted by: Mac on September 6, 2007 at 3:01 PM | PERMALINK

I am surprised everyone was not watching the AZ Diamondbacks pummeling the best pitcher in the NL last night.

Senator McCain's whole political career is based on the lie he is a war hero. Because the man was punished for dropping bombs on people, he is able to exploit his crime and punishment as a heroic mythology.

Posted by: Brojo on September 6, 2007 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

And Rudy has BY FAR the biggest ears.

He evolved those so that he can hear the front door opening while in the throes of passion with his mistress du jour.

Posted by: Disputo on September 6, 2007 at 3:19 PM | PERMALINK

Michael Sherer in Salon posted this wrap-up:

97 minutes. Hume says, "That is it for us tonight." Fox cuts to Hannity, who is now, inexplicably, wearing a blue tie. Hannity introduces pollster Frank Luntz, who has a focus group of 29 Republican voters at a restaurant in New Hampshire.
99 minutes. Luntz asks the voters to raise their hands if they think the candidates exceeded their expectations. No hands get raised. He asks how many were disappointed. They all raise their hands. "This is not a good night," Luntz concludes.
Posted by: Nemo on September 6, 2007 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

He evolved those so that he can hear the front door opening while in the throes of passion with his mistress du jour.

Ha! And presumably his rat-like countenance reflects his habit of skittering under beds and into closets when the lady's husband arrives home unexpectedly.

Posted by: shortstop on September 6, 2007 at 3:28 PM | PERMALINK

Nemo - why didn't they go to a Democratic functionary with a Democratic focus group. Or do the media only poll Republicans, like they did for the Democratic debates?

Posted by: anonymous on September 6, 2007 at 3:50 PM | PERMALINK

Perhaps Roger Federer could be our next president. I know he isn't 35 and he's Swiss, but dammit, the man has attained a zen like perfection on the court that just has to translate into mad transferrable skillz of some kind.

We couldn't do worse. Could we?

Posted by: Klein's Tiny Left Nut on September 6, 2007 at 5:44 PM | PERMALINK

Brojo says: "Senator McCain's whole political career is based on the lie he is a war hero. Because the man was punished for dropping bombs on people, he is able to exploit his crime and punishment as a heroic mythology."

Brojo, I'm no McCain fan, but this is just crap. While ejecting from his plane he broke both arms and a leg. On the ground, while he was pretty much helpless, a mob spat on him, kicked him, and stripped him of his uniform. North Vietnamese soldiers crushed his shoulder with a rifle butt, bayoneted his foot and abdomen, and took him to the "Hanoi Hilton." He was interrogated daily, and when he refused to provide information he was beaten unconscious.
He was offered a chance to be repatriated when his captors discovered that his father was the commander of all U.S. forces in Vietnam, but he turned it down because he would accept it only if every man taken in before him was released as well. He spent 5-1/2 years as a prisoner.

I don't know that any of this makes him a "war hero." I don't know whether it constitutes "heroic mythology." But it shows that when he was a young man he was pretty balls-up. And it goes far toward explaining what he said in last night's debate about why the U.S. shouldn't engage in torture.

Brojo, it seems to me that you have a lot of fucking gall to demean McCain on this basis. The "chickenhawk" meme is bullshit -- and I say that as a veteran, which I'm guessing you're not.

All that being said, I wouldn't vote for McCain on a bet.


Posted by: Ozhead on September 6, 2007 at 7:29 PM | PERMALINK

It's truly sad when a foreign tennis player is more popular than any of the Republican candidates for president. I'm laughing my butt off about it!

Posted by: MarkH on September 6, 2007 at 7:32 PM | PERMALINK

Ozhead: "And it goes far toward explaining what he said in last night's debate about why the U.S. shouldn't engage in torture."

Well written, Oz, and many good points, but we still must wonder why the good senator didn't oppose torture in any legislative way.

Posted by: Kenji on September 6, 2007 at 9:06 PM | PERMALINK

40 years ago McCain seems to have been rather heroic.

Today he is one of many powerful men and women who did nothing of consequence to stop the US from institutionalizing torture.

Posted by: jefff on September 6, 2007 at 9:11 PM | PERMALINK

"...we still must wonder why the good senator didn't oppose torture in any legislative way."

Well he did author that bill, and allow the white house to water it down to meaninglessness.

Sure made him look like a man of conscience to people who were not paying much attention though.

Posted by: jefff on September 6, 2007 at 9:13 PM | PERMALINK

I opted for the tennis match, too. Much better use of time.

Posted by: Mazurka on September 6, 2007 at 11:19 PM | PERMALINK

Ron Paul won that debate according to a text messaging poll

Posted by: Ya Know.... on September 6, 2007 at 11:31 PM | PERMALINK

Al Haig commanded all forces in Vietnam, not Admiral McCain.

Posted by: merlallen on September 7, 2007 at 4:58 AM | PERMALINK
40 years ago McCain seems to have been rather heroic.... jefff at 9:11 PM|
40 years ago, McCain became a POW and did what so many before and after him did: he endured. Since, he traded up

...- Family troubles: McCain has a reputation as a politician who has difficulty keeping his pants zipped, according to Republican sources. He acknowledges that his adultery broke up his first marriage. His second wife Cindy, the daughter of a wealthy Budweiser beer distributor, was addicted to prescription narcotics and even stole hard drugs from a medical charity that she ran...
Later, he was one of the Keating Five.

Posted by: Mike on September 9, 2007 at 4:55 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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