Out Of Her Mind

I am really trying to be nice to Hillary supporters, because I know how down they feel and I really don’t want to pile on during a tough couple of weeks, but one of the saddest things to happen this primary is to watch Jeralynn Merritt slowly lose her damned mind. Today, Obama spoke about Vietnam veterans in Charleston:

One of the saddest episodes in our history was the degree to which returning vets from Vietnam were shunned, demonized and neglected by some because they served in an unpopular war. Too many of those who opposed the war in Vietnam chose to blame not only the leaders who ordered the mission, but the young men who simply answered their country’s call. Four decades later, the sting of that injustice is a wound that has never fully healed, and one that should never be repeated.

Most of us would agree with that sentiment, and I would argue that even if it was just one person mistreating vets, that is too many. Jeralynn, on the other hand, has another translation:

Obama Disses Boomers Who Opposed Vietnam War…

In other words, Obama intends to battle the war-hero McCain by throwing us under the bus.

Yeah. She really said that. Her update continues the idiocy, and she gets pissed off because Obama said Vietnam veterans “answered their country’s call.” In Jeralynn speak, being drafted and serving honorably is not “answering your country’s call.”

At any rate, this English to Jeralynn game looks like good clean fun for us to try at home. Let’s try it with the Gettysburg Address:

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Run through the English to Jeralynn translation machine, that comes out:

Flabber dee gidgit wibbity wop. ZOOP ZOOP. Vietnam war protestors sucked. Flusbachoon weezgahorn flurpity doo.

Is this the longest god damned primary ever?

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243 replies
  1. 1
    A.Political says:

    I emailed and talked (through comments) with J about how she seems to be losing her focus, no small thanks to Big Tent Traffic Monger Armando…..I think there’s still hope for her.

  2. 2
    Desert Rat says:

    Really, Talk Left has become a sanity-free zone since Super Tuesday.

    It seems Jeralyn and Pup Tent Democrat (what Democrat hasn’t he pissed off in his years blogging, including getting run off the front page at the Great Orange Satan) have really flipped since Obama started rolling off the string of victories on Hillary in February.

    It’s pretty sad, actually. She used to have a pretty good blog. However, it is going to be very hard for the folks at Talk Left and Corrente in particular to walk back from all the over the top support of Hillary, particularly since they have burned a lot of boats with regard to what were pretty good fans of her blog.

    I go over there about once every 3-4 days, just to see if maybe they’ve stepped back from the stridency a bit. No sign of it yet.

    Of course, I know of a few blogs that have been unabashedly pro-Obama. They will also need to dial it back eventually in the name of comity once this thing gets settled.

  3. 3
    Incertus says:

    Every election cycle, there’s a term that just wears out its welcome, and this year, it’s “thrown under the bus.” I’m about ready to start kicking people in the junk just for writing it.

  4. 4
    A.Political says:

    But then again Big Tent Divisiveness is clever, he continues to groom…

  5. 5
    A.Political says:

    Incertus Says:

    Every election cycle, there’s a term that just wears out its welcome, and this year, it’s “thrown under the bus.” I’m about ready to start kicking people in the junk just for writing it.

    Damn that bus has run over enough, it must need some strut work done, and it better damn well be a hybrid cuz it’s got some mileage

  6. 6
    Lit3Bolt says:

    The most hilarious thing about this primary is if Obama was the sole candidate (ie, in some bizzaro universe Bizzaro Hillary Clinton divorced Bizzaro Bill and moved to Monkey’s Eyebrow, Kentucky) every single of these self proclaimed centrist Democrats and feminists and “real” progressives et al. would be dancing in the fucking streets, celebrating the candidacy of the first real possible African-American president.

  7. 7
    A.Political says:

    Lit3Bolt Says:

    The most hilarious thing about this primary is if Obama was the sole candidate (ie, in some bizzaro universe Bizzaro Hillary Clinton divorced Bizzaro Bill and moved to Monkey’s Eyebrow, Kentucky) every single of these self proclaimed centrist Democrats and feminists and “real” progressives et al. would be dancing in the fucking streets, celebrating the candidacy of the first real possible African-American president.

    Lit3Bolt, please. You’re obviously clinging to some kind of alternate reality where the roolz don’t matter and goalposts have legs.

  8. 8
    Conservatively Liberal says:

    Well John, you warned yourself that if you went over there, you would have to comment on anything stupid Jeralyn says. So you said that you were avoiding it. I am glad your better sense (or curiosity) has taken over, and you will comment on teh st00pid. No matter who it is, stupid is stupid.

    She should be called out on this. I was against the VW, but I have nothing but respect for those who went and did their duty. It is not their fault that they were where they were, they simply believed in the job they were doing and that is the end of it. Sure, there were some horrible things that happened, but war is war. Atrocities happen in war because it can bring out the worst in some people.

    But tarring all soldiers with that brush was too much. Blaming them for the failings of their leadership was wrong. What Jeralyn is doing is manipulating what Obama is saying so that it fits her frame of mind. That is a political tactic, and it is sad to see her go that route. I hope she has not gone so far around the bend that she has forgotten who she was.

    Sad, really sad.

  9. 9
    Josh says:

    Hillary had been thought to have jumped the shark but it turns out the shark was in her wheelhouse leaving the bus to kick her in the junk and, and…where was I?

  10. 10
    dopealope says:

    I’ve started going to Talkleft almost everyday: I just can’t take my eyes off the trainwreck that the site has become. And the above referenced post has to be one of the most unglued of recent days, and that is saying a lot.

    Speaking out my ass only, of course.

  11. 11
    Desert Rat says:

    >Conservatively Liberal Says:

    >I hope she has not gone so far around the bend that she has >forgotten who she was.

    Sadly, that ship sailed sometime ago, I’m afraid. The question is whether she can regain her bearings once the trumpets fade, and Hillary makes the concession speech/endorsement of Obama.

  12. 12

    I was reading that thread this afternoon, and the part that saddened me the most was the comment that said “that’s absolutely not what Obama said. Shame on you, Jeralyn.”

    And Jeralyn responded “that’s a personal attack and is not allowed here.”

    And as I expected, I just checked now and it’s no longer there.

  13. 13
    A.Political says:

    Desert Rat Says:

    >Conservatively Liberal Says:

    >I hope she has not gone so far around the bend that she has >forgotten who she was.

    Sadly, that ship sailed sometime ago, I’m afraid. The question is whether she can regain her bearings once the trumpets fade, and Hillary makes the concession speech/endorsement of Obama.

    Seriously, Armando is like Cheney/Rumsfeld once were (Cheney still is) to Bush…he whispers in her ear, telling her what she wants to hear and then controls the field for his own purposes.

  14. 14
    crw says:

    Actually, I’m sensing more than a little cognitive bias there. Obama’s a bad bad person so anything he says must be a slight to someone, right? It’s a self justifying loop of outrage. I honestly don’t know how you pull someone out of it, or if you can.

  15. 15
    myiq2xu says:

    The question is whether she can regain her bearings once the trumpets fade, and Hillary makes the concession speech/endorsement of Obama.

    Keep hoping. She’s not dead yet.

  16. 16
    BethanyAnne says:

    Yeah, I commented to her, too. I tried really hard to be nice, but I honestly think she’s lost her mind. She views anything he currently says in the worst possible light.

    As the poster said, “Shame on you, Jeralyn”.

    Her reply to me was that she had agreed with him on a couple of issues in the past, and said so. The implication was that this somehow makes her currently not bat-shit insane.

    I’m not sure how those are related, but whatever.

  17. 17
    Maggie says:

    I didn’t encounter TL ’til after super Tuesday, so my only experience of Jeralyn is that she’s a woman who couldn’t think her way out of a paper bag. There are not one, but two, blogginhead dialogues in which she gets her clock cleaned, and shows no signs of even recognizing that her dialogue partners gave up conversing with her a few minutes in and were humoring her the rest of the way through. But she was a respected blogger once, right?

    I stand in amazement.

  18. 18
    Lit3Bolt says:

    You’re obviously clinging to some kind of alternate reality where the roolz don’t matter and goalposts have legs.

    A reality where rules matter and goalposts don’t have legs? Now THERE’s a Bizzaro universe.

    Me am small Hillary supporter! Me think Hillary big chance to win, but me encouraged anyway. Hillary fighter, me am not be fighter as well! Me am blow racist dog-whistles very very softly!

  19. 19
    A.Political says:

    myiq2xu Says:

    The question is whether she can regain her bearings once the trumpets fade, and Hillary makes the concession speech/endorsement of Obama.

    Keep hoping. She’s not dead yet.
    May 12th, 2008 at 8:33 pm

    Hey!!! myiq, good to still see you thrashing about…been catching you and P.luk getting ravaged on the majority of the internet, really, everywhere you get called out, good work, it’s a first in terms of roundly being debunked on almost every IP that exists. Guy, Tim Berners-Lee has even heard of your prolific lameness and acknowledged it’s stature!

  20. 20
    cleek says:

    her odious ODS has made her jump over da shark.

  21. 21
    Nikki says:

    I saw that BetanyAnne. She knows she can’t justify her attack because he didn’t say what she claims he said. But she can’t back down either.

    I saw her do the same thing during the Schiavo incident. She said Michael Schiavo’s actions were as questionable as the family’s because he had moved on with his life. I called her on it and she ignored me. When others at GOS said the same thing, she ran there to defend herself.

    She really should stick to crime blogging.

  22. 22
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Oh, now I get it. Well, not really.

  23. 23
    Captain USA says:

    “We need to keep our eye on the bus, because if we don’t keep our eye on the bus, that bus will come back and attack us.”

  24. 24
    nightjar says:

    What Jeralyn is doing is manipulating what Obama is saying so that it fits her frame of mind.

    I think this is correct CL. There are more liberals than one might think that secretly have the mindset that any one who joins or is drafted (like I was) is furthering the war effort and should do the noble thing and not join or go AWOL. They usually keep it to themselves these days cause blaming the troops is no longer tolerated by most Americans.

  25. 25
    guyermo says:

    There’s only one thing that can summarize this primary season. Guess which part represents Hillary?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....re=related

  26. 26
    A.Political says:

    Maggie Says:

    I didn’t encounter TL ‘til after super Tuesday, so my only experience of Jeralyn is that she’s a woman who couldn’t think her way out of a paper bag. There are not one, but two, blogginhead dialogues in which she gets her clock cleaned, and shows no signs of even recognizing that her dialogue partners gave up conversing with her a few minutes in and were humoring her the rest of the way through. But she was a respected blogger once, right?

    For a great guffaw, do a search on the comments for when Althouse is held up as an angel when she supports a Hillary position, but when it’s non-Hillary related she is vilified as a right-wing nut-job in the bloggertv debates when Althouse disagrees or shows her true nature…it’s a study in intellectual dishonesty. And of course, when pointed out people are marginalized and then banned. It’s really surreal.

  27. 27
    Incertus says:

    I’m surprised Jeralyn hasn’t taken this story and spun it into an endorsement of Obama by Mike Huckabee, which is proof that Obama is really a religious conservonut who wants to bring about the rapture.

    Maybe I should just give her time.

  28. 28
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Seriously, Armando is like Cheney/Rumsfeld once were (Cheney still is) to Bush

    Didn’t he say in the comments he was a “Centrist Hawk”? Where I come from, we call that a pro-choice Republican.

  29. 29
    Ugh says:

    every single of these self proclaimed centrist Democrats and feminists and “real” progressives et al. would be dancing in the fucking streets, celebrating the candidacy of the first real possible African-American president.

    But that uppity ni@@er wouldn’t wait his damn fucking turn!! How dare he! It just goes to show how powerful the patriarchy is!!!

  30. 30
    Lavocat says:

    Talk Left started circling the bowl waaaaay back, especially when BTD started posting his batshit rants. Jeralyn’s antics have only gotten worse from there. Any disagreement, however slight, is viewed as a “personal attack” and is removed within the hour.

    Very Stalinesque, really.

    She actually started out as a very rational blogger in the vanguard of blogging. And now her site is shite.

    Still, not a bad site for quick legal analysis of topical issues.

  31. 31
    AkaDad says:

    Jeralynn should check her bearings, periodically.

  32. 32
    A.Political says:

    Just Some Fuckhead Says:

    Seriously, Armando is like Cheney/Rumsfeld once were (Cheney still is) to Bush

    Didn’t he say in the comments he was a “Centrist Hawk”? Where I come from, we call that a pro-choice Republican.
    May 12th, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    Honestly, he is a traffic/ego monger and an exquisite ass, he is beyond contempt. I’ve engaged him in numerous debates on TL under various accounts, and every time I paint him in to a corner and every time he bans me regardless of the content or context. He is weak and a parasite. And I’m being nice.

  33. 33
    myiq2xu says:

    Hey myiq, good to still see you thrashing about…been catching you and P.luk getting ravaged on the majority of the internet, really, everywhere you get called out, good work, it’s a first in terms of roundly being debunked on almost every IP that exists.

    I’ve gone viral?

    Guy, Tim Berners-Lee has even heard of your prolific lameness and acknowledged it’s stature!

    Who?

  34. 34
    A.Political says:

    myiq2xu Says:

    I’ve gone viral?

    No, you’ve gone pathetic

    Guy, Tim Berners-Lee has even heard of your prolific lameness and acknowledged it’s stature!

    Who?

    I rest my case.

  35. 35

    I would recommend anyone who was old enough to serve, but did not, go take a walk by that shiny black granite wall in DC. The pictures don’t do it justice. Everyone on that wall answered the call.

  36. 36
    Incertus says:

    Honestly, he is a traffic/ego monger and an exquisite ass, he is beyond contempt. I’ve engaged him in numerous debates on TL under various accounts, and every time I paint him in to a corner and every time he bans me regardless of the content or context. He is weak and a parasite. And I’m being nice.

    It probably pained him to no end that he didn’t quite have that power at the GOS–and while I’ve disagreed a fair amount with Kos over the years, he sure made the right call when getting rid of that twerp.

  37. 37
    jake says:

    The next person who uses TutB in a non-ironic fashion is going to wind up with a set of heavy duty tire tracks across their back.

    And can we fast forward to the bit where Scooby Doo and the gang rip off Without Merritt mask and Zoinks! It’s Michelle Malkin!

  38. 38
    Lit3Bolt says:

    Actually something crw said made me think.

    Obama’s a bad bad person so anything he says must be a slight to someone, right? It’s a self justifying loop of outrage. I honestly don’t know how you pull someone out of it, or if you can.

    This happens to both Clinton and Obama supporters I think. It’s as if liberals have given up actively hating Bush, since he’s so shameless and Washington so complacent there’s no point in it anyway. So the hatred of the past 7 years is being channeled into any political opponent now, and people think that the opposing candidate is the Antichrist. It’s intellectually lazy politics, but as an opposition party, Democratic activists have had it pretty easy since the current Republican administration was so blatant in its evil. You could simply oppose every position they took, accuse them of lying every time and you’d be correct 99.99% of the time. Do you see what I’m saying? All you had to do was to do the opposite of whatever Bush did, and you’d be morally right. No thinking about issues required, and even if you did bother to do a minimum of research into their activities, it would simply confirm your prejudgment (“Yup, they lied again and are doing something unspeakably evil for political gain. Wow this is easy.”)

    Now left leaning people are attempting to transfer that same simple, good vs evil logic to PEOPLE IN THEIR OWN GODDAMN PARTY (sticky caps to emphasize the stupidity it all) and bridges are being nuked left and right, but it doesn’t work, and you see the logic fray apart such as in this example because there’s nothing that’s spectacularly evil to condemn. Yes, maybe Obama is buying into the myth that Vietnam vets were called “baby-killers” (many weren’t), but at the same time, he’s right that the country did not go out of its way to do the vets any favors after the war. Getting that Obama hates anti-war boomers from that is a long reach.

    What do you think? It’s a rough and ready theory, but I can’t think of many other explanations for this irrational hatred of one Democratic candidate versus the other.

  39. 39
    Martin says:

    BTW, it’s always interesting to see people like Jeralyn in person. A lot doesn’t come through in writing.

    Unfortunately, she comes off as a Big Brother candidate to me.

  40. 40
    John Cole says:

    I can’t keep my eyes open I am so tired and am going to bed, but I don’t want to wake up tomorrow morning and see people going overboard attacking Jeralynn.

    What she said in this post is beyond stupid, and it is ok to mock it (I sure did), but jeralynn is a genuinely sweet, nice, decent person. Try to remember that, as it is why this is so sad.

    Please won’t this damned primary end.

  41. 41
    Ted says:

    and while I’ve disagreed a fair amount with Kos over the years, he sure made the right call when getting rid of that twerp.

    Why DID Kos get rid of him?

  42. 42
    johnbpt says:

    Wait, I’m confused: why did Hillary throw that poor shark under the bus?

  43. 43

    Yeah. Talk left is what it is. You don’t gotta to go that site if you don’t want to. I checked on this site when the blogosphere was new and hadn’t been back till recently. It has not changed.

    No new dragons to slay here. After all that is why the remote control was invented for the TeeVee. Go enjoy something else.

  44. 44
    Keith says:

    I’d be almost content if I just never had to hear the term “thrown under the bus” again. Why the obsession with using metaphors? When did single, multi-syllabic words fall out of vogue? It’s not like Middle America is incapable of understanding a point unless it’s associated with a down-to-earth analogy, and even if MA *was* incapable, I’m pretty sure they can handle other examples.

  45. 45
    Jake says:

    BTW, it’s always interesting to see people like Jeralyn in person. A lot doesn’t come through in writing.

    Unfortunately, she comes off as a Big Brother candidate to me.

    Everyone reading this thread should watch that, at least the first five minutes. It was the day after the PA primary. Kleiman starts off predicting everything that just happens. Jeralyn starts off in total denial mode.

    She really does not appear all that bright to me, at least not based on that video.

  46. 46
    crw says:

    This happens to both Clinton and Obama supporters I think.

    Of course both supporters do it. It’s a natural human trait. Once we’ve formed an opinion about something, all further evidence gets filtered through the lens of that opinion. Look up confirmation bias at some point.

    You may well be right that part of this is intellectual laziness brought on by years of GOP mendacity. But my point is it’s human, all too human, to succumb to bias and misinterpret someone’s statements, or to selectively remember or perceive certain facts. It’s part of the inevitable noise that impedes human communication and understanding. Overcoming it is a challenge and requires a great deal of self insight and brutal self-honesty that many people find difficult. Such as the kind our dear host showed regarding Iraq.

  47. 47
    Jake says:

    Also, I hate to say it, but… bad dye job, bad lipstick. Yikes.

  48. 48
    Marshall says:

    I think that you English to Jeralynn translation machine is broken. Mine comes up with

    Lincoln disses peace loving Tories who opposed the revolution.

    In other words, he intends to battle the confederates by throwing Canada under the bus.

  49. 49
    Ninerdave says:

    Flabber dee gidgit wibbity wop. ZOOP ZOOP. Vietnam war protestors sucked. Flusbachoon weezgahorn flurpity doo.

    Cleek needs to come up with a filter that does that.

  50. 50
    Ninerdave says:

    The question is whether she can regain her bearings once the trumpets fade

    Ageist.

  51. 51
    Ninerdave says:

    Why DID Kos get rid of him?

    I thought he left to do his own blog and got outted.

  52. 52
    Jake says:

    Watch the bloggingheads part about which state is more important: Indiana or NC.

    Kleiman absolutely owns her. It’s ugly.

  53. 53
    fahey says:

    Jeralynn is Rita Skeeter

  54. 54
    myiq2xu says:

    Ageist.

    At least he’s not a racist

  55. 55
    Zuzu says:

    I can’t believe the sheer illogic of this.

    First of all, the vast majority of those who served in Vietnam – including Al Gore and John Kerry – were volunteer Army, Marines, Navy, etc. I guess that’s not “answering their country’s call” either.

    And I guess she thinks Gore and Kerry threw all us antiwar folks under the bus in 2000 and 2004 when they repeated similar sentiments.

  56. 56
    Incertus says:

    Why DID Kos get rid of him?

    He was outed by a right wing site while he was posting as Armando–he hadn’t quite turned into the superdouche he is now. He came back as BTD, and made such an ass of himself that Kos just couldn’t take it anymore and tossed him, and that takes some major work.

  57. 57
    nepat says:

    When does “under the bus” get to be thrown under the bus?

  58. 58
    Soylent Green says:

    A commenter at Taylor Marsh:

    I am so worried that Obama may have some plans to cheat in tomorrows West Virginia primary. I think he has it down pat now on how to have many dead or phony people cast votes to boost their total votes. Why else is he not campaigning?

    John, since you are helping get out the vote in West Virginia, there must be some dead people you can call. As they say, leave no headstone unturned.

  59. 59
    John Cole says:

    Watch the bloggingheads part about which state is more important: Indiana or NC.

    Kleiman absolutely owns her. It’s ugly.

    If I remember correctly, they had to film that bloggingheads episode three times because they kept having computer problems , so it probably may not be their best efforts.

    That being said, I felt Kleiman pretty consistently had better arguments.

  60. 60
    Jon H says:

    Another person whose brain was eaten is the person who comments at Delong’s place as ‘anne’.

    She’s been reduced to posting things along the lines of:

    Don’t hurt her. Don’t hurt her. Don’t hurt her. Don’t hurt her. Don’t hurt her.

    There was one thread where her comments consisted only of repeated phrases like that. It’s rather sad.

  61. 61
    A.Political says:

    nepat Says:

    When does “under the bus” get to be thrown under the bus?
    May 12th, 2008 at 9:42 pm

    Well said!

  62. 62
    Adam says:

    He was outed by a right wing site while he was posting as Armando—he hadn’t quite turned into the superdouche he is now.

    As I recall, he was outed as a lawyer working for Wal-Mart (or a firm representing Wal-Mart?) while simultaneously posting anti-Wal-Mart posts at DKos. Does anyone remember it better?

  63. 63
    John Cole says:

    I am so worried that Obama may have some plans to cheat in tomorrows West Virginia primary. I think he has it down pat now on how to have many dead or phony people cast votes to boost their total votes. Why else is he not campaigning?

    We could have every person who died in the last 6 months vote for Obama and Hillary will still win by 10-15 points. there are only 1.8 million people in the whole state.

    These Hillary bloggers are really certifiable. I feel like I am watching a mirror image of myself from 2002-2005.

  64. 64
    Janefinch says:

    She’s lost it, plain and simple. I don’t care how nice and sweet she is as a person….this is tripe, and revisionist tripe at that. And when you put your trip out in public for all to mock, don’t be surprised when people do.

  65. 65
    A.Political says:

    Adam Says:

    As I recall, he was outed as a lawyer working for Wal-Mart (or a firm representing Wal-Mart?) while simultaneously posting anti-Wal-Mart posts at DKos. Does anyone remember it better?
    May 12th, 2008 at 9:46 pm

    Yes as I remember it, he was – and is – an exquisite ass.

  66. 66
    flyerhawk says:

    I post somewhat frequently at TL. On straight horse race stuff they are only mildly deluded.

    But if you want to watch a complete feeding frenzy, check out what happens when some new faux sexist accusation comes about.

    It is truly surreal. It’s A-Ok for them to constantly talk about how we need a woman President but god forbid someone references her femininity in some negative way. Pure sexism then.

    I also enjoy the fact that the rules are “No accusing anyone of racism. Accusations of sexism are fine”. And they wonder why people don’t treat sexism and racism equally.

  67. 67
    A.Political says:

    Not to go too far off-topic, but Taylor Marsh and Lambert beat them all in best of the crazy category.

    Honorable mention to Larry Johnson et al.

  68. 68
    John Cole says:

    He was outed by a right wing site while he was posting as Armando—he hadn’t quite turned into the superdouche he is now.

    He was outed by Steve Spruiell at NRO. Even though I hated Armando at the time, I thought it was bullshit. If I remember correctly, my honest to god first reaction when he was outed was being shocked that his real name was Armando.

    Talk about deep cover.

  69. 69
    Notorious P.A.T. says:

    I always figured the “liberals” who hated on Viet Nam vets ended up morphing into neocons. It makes perfect sense: most of them used to claim to be liberals, and they don’t seem to like people who have actually fought in actual wars. Real veterans kind of make neocons’ pretensions to warrior status look as foolish as they really are, and tend to hate war (having actually seen it) and that just won’t do either.

  70. 70

    […] IMHO, everyone needs to chill out a little bit, give up on the Obama-as-Messiah theme (Yo! Arthur! Has Obama ever suggested he was a Messiah? I can’t remember him doing so; feel free to correct me), and give up on the gender-based tribal politics of Taylor Marsh or Jeralyn Merritt, and try to find out a way to move this country forward, even if only incrementally. […]

  71. 71
    flyerhawk says:

    A.Political,

    Larry Johnson and the rest of the No Quarter loonies deserve their own category. While I am willing to chalk up TL, Corrente, and even Taylor Marsh to being lost in the passion of politics, No Quarter is certifiably insane at all levels.

  72. 72
    Aaron says:

    “Too many of those who opposed the war in Vietnam chose to blame not only the leaders who ordered the mission, but the young men who simply answered their country’s call.”

    I disagree. Back then people had common sense and knew what it meant that there was a draft. They didnt ‘blame the young men who simply answered their country’s call’.
    THIS IS A BULLSHIT REPUBLICAN BULLSHIT TALKING POINT AND I DONT BELIEVE IT AND OBAMA SHOULDNT BE SAYING IT. (yes twice bullshit). THESE ARE THE LIES THAT REPUBLICANS TELL TO DISCREDIT THE LEFT AND OBAMA SHOULDNT BE TELLING THEM.

    The fact is that the people who were pissed at our troops at that time were the VFW members who were pissed that they had won their wars (WWII and Korea) and were pissed that a bunch of drug abusing hippies were loosing theirs (‘Nam). I think Forest Gump, while obviously fictional, has it right. Any nam vet who showed up in uniform wouldn’t be shunned- they would be given a sign, or a mic and would be put right out in front of the event.

  73. 73
    CBD says:

    A good little Jingo never questions another’s service.

  74. 74
    r€nato says:

    I am outraged that Jeralyn would use the metaphor, ‘thrown under the bus’ in the context of an African-American! Hasn’t she ever heard of Rosa Parks?

    Hey, this is fun! I can get outraged about anything if I try hard enough!

    Ai kin haz Hot Air nao?

  75. 75
    r€nato says:

    When does “under the bus” get to be thrown under the bus?

    As soon as it jumps the shark.

  76. 76
    Aaron says:

    To be clear the “drug abusing hippies” comment was meant to be the VFW members opinion of Vietnam vets overall.
    Vietnam vets didnt join the VFW in numbers for quite a while afterwards.
    Obviously, individual opinions varied.

  77. 77
    flyerhawk says:

    BTW, for an example of the double standard at TL check this comment out by Jeralynn…

    Women are not interchangeable. In fact, it would be rubbing salt in the wounds of her already disappointed supporters. Like showing off the new girlfriend to the jilted one. I think millions would stay home.

    How is it like showing off a new girlfriend? We aren’t dating Hillary. Just a few days earlier they went nutso over the Hillary is the psycho ex-girlfriend but apparently this is an acceptable form of gender talk.

  78. 78
    r€nato says:

    Jeralynn should check her bearings, periodically.

    yeah, I think that’s also known as, ‘step away from the internets, go outside, get a breath of fresh air, go for a walk, smell the flowers and realize that most of the world doesn’t care about blogging or blogosphere inside-baseball.’

    A little of that would be really healthy for all bloggers and commenters.

  79. 79
    jake says:

    I can’t keep my eyes open I am so tired and am going to bed, but I don’t want to wake up tomorrow morning and see people going overboard attacking Jeralynn.

    You kids settle down! Don’t make me pull this blog over!

  80. 80
    KCinDC says:

    One of the bizarre points about Jeralyn Merritt’s ODS is that Obama is somewhat better than Clinton on criminal justice issues (of course both are far better than McCain).

  81. 81
    John Cole says:

    yeah, I think that’s also known as, ‘step away from the internets, go outside, get a breath of fresh air, go for a walk, smell the flowers and realize that most of the world doesn’t care about blogging or blogosphere inside-baseball.’

    I walked a solid 6-8 miles today through hilly terrain. Does that count?

  82. 82
    John Cole says:

    One of the bizarre points about Jeralyn Merritt’s ODS is that Obama is somewhat better than Clinton on criminal justice issues (of course both are far better than McCain).

    I am going to flat out beg that we do not adopt the acronym ODS.

    Remember, that is based on a right-wing frame that stated anyone who disagreed with Bush had BDS. I parroted it for years while on the kool-aid.

    Even if Hillary supporters can not be rational about about, avoid using ODS. It validates the use of BDS, which is utter bullshit.

  83. 83
    cbear says:

    We could have every person who died in the last 6 months vote for Obama and Hillary will still win by 10-15 points. there are only 1.8 million people in the whole state.

    Has anyone seen any polling on which candidate the sexually-active sheep are supporting? That could be a game changer.

  84. 84
    Martin says:

    She really does not appear all that bright to me, at least not based on that video.

    My take was that she’s in her alliance and she’s gonna protect her place there as much as possible. Some people are just wired to be in a tribe.

  85. 85
    Jon H says:

    “One of the bizarre points about Jeralyn Merritt’s ODS is that Obama is somewhat better than Clinton on criminal justice issue”

    Yep. Obama got IL to videotape interrogations, and Clinton… proposed an anti-flag-burning amendment, and, when crack sentences were equalized with powdered coke sentences, she didn’t want to release prisoners who had been in prison longer than the new, shorter sentences. Which makes no sense.

    Really, I think the Clinton campaign is the last-gasp effort of the core Baby Boomers to screw everything up, because it’s All About Them.

  86. 86
    Jon H says:

    “I am going to flat out beg that we do not adopt the acronym ODS.”

    How about Ponyphobia?

  87. 87
    1jpb says:

    I think this is a tough time for the HRC folks at TL. I saw that thing about the vets today, and it seemed very odd. It looked like BTD was trying to politely say he thought Jeralyn was way off.

    Anyway, TL suspended me a few days ago. There was no warning or explanation. And, I’ve really like a lot of those folks, even if that wasn’t always obvious because of my sharply pro-BHO comments.

    But, I will say I do really like this site, and since I’ve been banned at TL I’ve been reading everything here. I’m sure that I’ll keep up with y’all even after they (hopefully) reinstate me over at TL.

    P.S. I didn’t comment in your post about possible additions to your blog list. I’d agree with all those who mentioned The Field. And, I like Bloggingheads. Come to think of it; I’d like to see John Cole do Bloggingheads with BTD.

  88. 88
    Zuzu says:

    I just try to imagine the landscape after the first week of June.

    Sigh.

  89. 89
    myiq2xu says:

    How is it like showing off a new girlfriend? We aren’t dating Hillary. Just a few days earlier they went nutso over the Hillary is the psycho ex-girlfriend but apparently this is an acceptable form of gender talk.

    Why don’t you try giving the quote in context?

    Jeralyn was discussing the idea of Obama picking a woman (other than Hillary) to be his VP in order to win over Hillary’s supporters.

  90. 90
    Punchy says:

    Holy shit. I just noticed that my extremely neutral comment about Obama was deleted by TL on Saturday.

    They’ve officially crossed into the “if it aint praising Clinton, it’s deleted”.

    Unreal. Fuck Jeralynn and her bullshit.

  91. 91
    Notorious P.A.T. says:

    Jeralyn:

    Women are not interchangeable. In fact, it would be rubbing salt in the wounds of her already disappointed supporters. Like showing off the new girlfriend to the jilted one.

    “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go make plans to vote for John McCain, who dumped his first wife when her looks were ruined and routinely appears on TV with his younger, prettier, richer second wife.”

  92. 92
    myiq2xu says:

    Has anyone seen any polling on which candidate the sexually-active sheep are supporting?

    Are you being baaad again?

  93. 93
    John Cole says:

    Come to think of it; I’d like to see John Cole do Bloggingheads with BTD.

    I have a face for radio, and I don’t think you could get a half hour show out of:

    “Fuck off, Armando.”
    “No, you fuck off, Cole.”

  94. 94
    flyerhawk says:

    myiq2xu,

    How does that change the fact that she refers to being a jilted ex-girlfriend?

  95. 95
    nightjar says:

    1jpb Says:

    I think this is a tough time for the HRC folks at TL. I saw that thing about the vets today, and it seemed very odd. It looked like BTD was trying to politely say he thought Jeralyn was way off.

    There is a commenter at TL with the handle of Squeaky, I think, who is a HC supporter but has kept his head screwed on straight. I read a long thread with him trying to talk down some of the folks there from their delusions. It was fascinating to read the interplay between him( or her) and them . If someone could clone squeaky and send them out to all the hilbot blogs we might could bring them back from the brink. Some might even join for Obama. Oh well, wishful thinking I guess.

  96. 96
    Incertus says:

    Jeralyn was discussing the idea of Obama picking a woman (other than Hillary) to be his VP in order to win over Hillary’s supporters.

    Is that supposed to make the comparison better somehow? People rightfully got twisted when Wil Wheaton compared Clinton to a psycho ex-girlfriend, but it’s okay when Jeralyn compares her to a jilted girlfriend being faced with the new girlfriend?

  97. 97
    Martin says:

    I disagree. Back then people had common sense and knew what it meant that there was a draft. They didnt ‘blame the young men who simply answered their country’s call’.
    THIS IS A BULLSHIT REPUBLICAN BULLSHIT TALKING POINT AND I DONT BELIEVE IT AND OBAMA SHOULDNT BE SAYING IT. (yes twice bullshit). THESE ARE THE LIES THAT REPUBLICANS TELL TO DISCREDIT THE LEFT AND OBAMA SHOULDNT BE TELLING THEM.

    Actually, it’s not.

    Like so many things, reality lies between the perceptions of both sides. Soldiers and cadets that hadn’t deployed really did think that people would spit on them. It only takes 1-2 anecdotes of that happening for people that feel emotionally under siege to accept it as true in a broad way. It’s not that they necessarily believe that it’s true, but it gives them a physical thing to attach the emotional issue to – and people don’t like to just let emotional issues hang around unattached. It gave them reason to not wear their uniforms in public, to not talk about being in the military, to have to answer difficult questions about whether they agreed with the war, etc. So, the idea that people were spitting on troops gives them a crutch to use.

    On the flip side, people weren’t actually doing that in a large sense, though we all know there are a handful of people that *would* do that. But there certainly was a lot of heat directed toward the leaders of the war and for them, to get soldiers to side with them is a rather strong moral victory. It really does put the troops in an impossible position because they are, in a sense, being attacked *to take a position*. So this new reality gets created that doesn’t match what’s really happening.

    You see it in the primaries and on the pundit sites (like this and Kos) where Clinton things get blown out of proportion in order to reinforce a certain idea or position, and Jeralyn or Jerome does the same thing with Obama stuff.

    But it’s not a bullshit point if the people at the time did feel as though the actions described were likely to happen to them. That stems from something and that something is no less real than when it happens to people on the left – such as when people say that hippies spit on troops, when almost certainly that *did* happen, or things like it happen, on a small scale.

  98. 98
    John Cole says:

    There is a commenter at TL with the handle of Squeaky, I think, who is a HC supporter but has kept his head screwed on straight. I read a long thread with him trying to talk down some of the folks there from their delusions. It was fascinating to read the interplay between him( or her) and them . If someone could clone squeaky and send them out to all the hilbot blogs we might could bring them back from the brink. Some might even join for Obama. Oh well, wishful thinking I guess.

    The thing to remember is how few people are actually commenting on blog comment pages, and those are only the most radical and committed, generally. Hell, on a given day here, we will get 700-100 comments, but only about 50-100 unique commenters (and 20 of them are probably DougJ). Compare that to an average of 15000 unique visitors. The vast majority of people are just not freaking out like the majority of commenters.

    When this is all over, Humpty Dumpty will be quite easy to put back together again. Think about it- the GOP candidate refuses to support a GI Bill. It will not be hard to rally the troops.

  99. 99
    Notorious P.A.T. says:

    Why don’t you try giving the quote in context?

    Jeralyn was discussing the idea of Obama picking a woman (other than Hillary) to be his VP in order to win over Hillary’s supporters.

    That would be horrible of Obama!

    Yet, somehow, I get the funny feeling that if he doesn’t pick a woman as his VP, Hillary’s supporters will view that as a slight as well.

  100. 100
    vwcat says:

    I’ve noticed the decline into madness of many of Hillary bloggers and the supporters. Paranoia is one of the most obvious. I’m guessing soon they will shut off their lights and only use a flashlight to look out the window at any sound thinking the agents of Obama are out there to get them.

  101. 101
    vwcat says:

    If you want to read some really wild stuff, the comments on Hillaryis44 is outright bizaar. Some people on Kos have posted some comments from there and it’s really strange stuff. Alot of conspiracy stuff about Obama taking over the blogs and shutting down things and taking over the world. They really believe this.

  102. 102
    Leo says:

    Remember, not too long ago people like Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter were publically condemning John McCain. Somehow, these things have a habit of working themselves out once a nominee is choosen.

  103. 103
    Genine says:

    flyerhawk Says:

    BTW, for an example of the double standard at TL check this comment out by Jeralynn…

    Women are not interchangeable. In fact, it would be rubbing salt in the wounds of her already disappointed supporters. Like showing off the new girlfriend to the jilted one. I think millions would stay home.

    How is it like showing off a new girlfriend? We aren’t dating Hillary. Just a few days earlier they went nutso over the Hillary is the psycho ex-girlfriend but apparently this is an acceptable form of gender talk.

    I don’t even try to reason through that anymore. The double-standard some women have shown throughout this election has really pissed me off. It’s disgusted me so much, I don’t even use the label of feminist anymore. I am for sexual and gender equality, mutual respect, dignity, autonomy, and women having rights to their own body, also a whole host of other things. But I am no longer a feminist. I’ve met far too many feminists who fight against sexism, unless its sexism they approve of.

    It’s been disappointing to say the least. But, its all good. There are some feminists I still respect and support. However, I consider myself more egalitarian then feminist.

  104. 104
    John Cole says:

    BTW- I would like to also point out that several of you, when directed to the bloggingheads thing, felt the need to make comments about Jeralynn’s appearance, but no one mentioned what Kleiman looked like.

    Not to get all preachy and the like, because I can be just as bad, but when the Hillary bloggers complain about sexism and double standards, they are not always wrong. I don’t think it gets any clearer than that double standard, right here.

  105. 105
    The Other Steve says:

    Why don’t you try giving the quote in context?

    Jeralyn was discussing the idea of Obama picking a woman (other than Hillary) to be his VP in order to win over Hillary’s supporters.

    I’ve got a radical idea.

    How about we nominate someone who will do a good job?

    I know. Totally unthinkable, but I can always hope.

  106. 106
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    nepat Says:

    When does “under the bus” get to be thrown under the bus?

    The bus will get thrown under itself when it closes the deal with real hard-working Americans by turning the corner on the light at the end of the tunnel which is a freight train running over the shark over there so it doesn’t have to over here so we can mail in our keys and just walk away during the 7th inning of the mortgage meltdown which transcends the horserace because it is going all the way to the convention.

    Why do you have Bus Derangement Syndrome, anyway?

  107. 107
    Genine says:

    John Cole Says:

    BTW- I would like to also point out that several of you, when directed to the bloggingheads thing, felt the need to make comments about Jeralynn’s appearance, but no one mentioned what Kleiman looked like.

    Not to get all preachy and the like, because I can be just as bad, but when the Hillary bloggers complain about sexism and double standards, they are not always wrong. I don’t think it gets any clearer than that double standard, right here.

    That’s a very good point.

  108. 108
    1jpb says:

    John Cole says:

    I don’t think you could get a half hour show out of:

    “Fuck off, Armando.”
    “No, you fuck off, Cole.”

    Well, that sort of thing worked for Penn and Ickes. Oh wait, I guess that didn’t work, I stand corrected, you’re right.

  109. 109
    rachel says:

    Holy shit, but that talkleft post is full of fail. I thought Jeralyn was supposed to be the sane one, but she seems to have lost her ability to comprehend English where Obama is involved.

  110. 110
    Notorious P.A.T. says:

    However, I consider myself more egalitarian then feminist.

    I always thougt “humanist” was a good choice. And since women are humans. . .

    no one mentioned what Kleiman looked like.

    Hehe. That’s the first thing I noticed when I saw that clip. “Hey, what is an Amish man doing debating on the internet?”

  111. 111
    myiq2xu says:

    The Obamamaniac Behavior Guide

  112. 112
    Soylent Green says:

    Jeralyn was discussing the idea of Obama picking a woman (other than Hillary) to be his VP in order to win over Hillary’s supporters

    I’ve noticed that any woman who is mentioned on TL as a possible VP for Obama other than Hillary gets immediately raked over the coals, labeled a token, called a Judas, being used by Obama to humiliate Hillary…

    Touchy group.

  113. 113
    r€nato says:

    I walked a solid 6-8 miles today through hilly terrain. Does that count?

    hell yeah. I should take my own advice.

  114. 114
    nightjar says:

    day here, we will get 700-100 comments, but only about 50-100 unique commenters (and 20 of them are probably DougJ)

    The vast majority of people are just not freaking out like the majority of commenters.

    I guess it’s easy to exaggerate the numbers of the most ardent Hillary supporters. On the other hand, 20 DougJ’s is a kind of scary.

    And I’m truly not worried about MCcain. If this was 2000, maybe, but not now.

  115. 115
    Kevin says:

    I walked a solid 6-8 miles today through hilly terrain. Does that count?

    I would love to be able to do that, but I keep having problems with my feet.

  116. 116
    Martin says:

    If this he was 2000, maybe, but not now.

    Yeah, he’d be a bigger concern if he were a thousand or so years younger.

  117. 117
    Martin says:

    but I keep having problems with my feet.

    Me too. The fucking things won’t get off the ottoman.

  118. 118
    MM says:

    BTW, it’s always interesting to see people like Jeralyn in person. A lot doesn’t come through in writing.

    That was painful.

    Kleiman: Here are some facts.

    Merritt: Big states! 2.5 million! On a roll!

    Kleiman: But what about the facts I listed?

    Merritt: Florida! Ohio!

    Christ. Put sunglasses on her face and a six pack on her belt and it was like he was debating with Duffman.

    “Duffman needs to see all delegates get seated! Oooh Yeah!”

  119. 119
    Harley says:

    Jeralynn may be a nice person. But the authoritarian streak she’s shown during the last three months — all disagreement will be deleted!! — is as surprising as it is sad. I’m not sure she comes back from this. Talkleft certainly won’t.

  120. 120
    Harley says:

    Wow. Sorry for two in a row, but just hopped over to watch Kleiman and Jeralyn. Ouch. She talks like someone just smacked her in the face with a two by four. Not looks, mind you. Talks.

    Okay, the glazed, thousand-yard stare didn’t help. But it’s what she said, and quite frankly, how she said it, that makes one cringe.

  121. 121
    Adam says:

    Jeralyn has been really bizarre lately. The other day I followed a link from memorandum to a thread where she suggested that Obama should take the AG spot in the upcoming Clinton Administration… like that would be his consolation prize or something.

    Even Armando was incredulous about that one. He actually deleted his own comment on the thread as over the top. That’s some real Twilight Zone weirdness right there.

  122. 122
    Delia says:

    Well, TalkLeft may be nuts, but it’s not as nuts as No Quarter. Here’s what Susan, who used to be intelligent and rational, is writing now.

    we’ve got some dirt-diggin’ to do, folks! HERE’s HOW:

    The prissy, “Oh I love Hillary” blogs ain’t gettin’ it done. The posts about Hillary on Mother’s Day are sweet, but don’t give her another single vote.

    Let’s hit Obama Inc. where it hurts.

    Ideas welcome! EXPRESS THEM BELOW!

    GUEST POSTS ARE ALSO WELCOME.

    (Caveat: Please, oh please, if you wish to write something for us, put it in a format that we can easily transfer into a blog post. Do the basic HTML code. If you need simple instructions on how to do it, e-mail me and I will explain that to you. It’s SO simple, but it makes our lives so much easier if you have a post that we can simply copy and paste and publish!)

    A SUGGESTION: Some of the material out there against Obama tends to be arcane and complex. Do not get caught up in the minutae — keep it really simple! Dumb it down so it’s easy for all to understand!

    That’s right, Susan. You don’t want anything too complex for your voters to understand, do you. Keep it simple and dumb, just as Hillary likes it.

    And I’ll just add one post to show the level of tinfoil thinking and asshat smear stories they’re trying to get cooking over there:

    Comment by Deep Truths | 2008-05-12 15:35:23

    Hi I’m new but have been lurking for a couple months. I’d like to contribute to this project.

    My working hypothesis is that BO, along with all the other one-degree separation (i.e. Rezko, murdered gay choir director, Iraqi gov’t scams) I believe Obama helps to manipulate oil prices through his involvement with Nigerian rebels who mysteriously create havoc just when oil prices stabilize.

    How else can you explain this headline:
    “Nigerian oil rebels considering Obama truce appeal”

    (Source: Reuters 04 May 2008
    http://www.alertnet.org/thenew.....445785.htm)

    And when did Obama get a job in the State Department? Anyway consider, opine, and triagulate the following:

    1)Senator Obama lunches with Dick Cheney first year
    2)Oil prices skyrocket due in part to demand and instability in oil regions
    3)Senator Obama votes yes on energy bill written by Dick Cheney
    4)Nigerian rebels attack oil fields when oil prices are ebbing

    Oil currently hovering at $125 dollars per barrel.

    I have no doubt that Obama Hussein (yes, that’s your middle name) Obama is the most dangerous individual without an indictment or impeachment over his head.

    Even more frightening is the total silence of our so-called free press who have defacto responsibility to report these crimes to government and the people.

    We need to regulate and license news organizations in this country. How hard is it to get objective neutral, fair and balance reporting?

  123. 123
    Justin says:

    What she said in this post is beyond stupid, and it is ok to mock it (I sure did), but jeralynn is a genuinely sweet, nice, decent person. Try to remember that, as it is why this is so sad.

    That’s kind of you John, and it’s nice to seeing you attempt to moderate the discourse here a little. But remember that from the other side, you appear immersed in an irrational hatred of Hillary Clinton that is matched only by your starry-eyed embrace of Obama. Where’s the unity? Where’s the attempts to understand the other side? Many of us spend time wondering why you worship Sen. Obama and have given him such a pass on the experience issue, while Clinton is “the psycho ex-girlfriend” of the party.

    Jeralyn is trying to figure out what Obama’s governing strategy is going to be like. Hmm…that might be important, yes? And from the early results it appears that Obama will ‘throw under the bus’ his supporters, and in this case that includes the anti-war crowd who thought Clinton was too hawkish and voted for a blank slate instead.

    And sure, many liberals did NOT accept as adequate the claim that “I was just following orders.” That was one of the principles of Nuremburg, that following orders was no justification for war crimes. Jeralyn was not offering up judgment on this issue, simply pointing out that in this critical ‘change’ election, Obama is increasingly seen as running a campaign against his own party. That might sound good if you’ve hated the Democratic party all along (and are simply ‘focusing on John McCain”) but remember how fragile that awful ‘white working class’ support for Dems has been in previous elections, and throwing them under the bus, or throwing AA’s under the bus, could have lasting consequences that would empower Republicans in ways much bigger than winning in 08. Can Obama hold it all together based on what you’ve seen in this primary? The answer is demonstrably no.

    Please won’t this damned primary end.

    Why should the primary end now? It’s just now getting interesting. You think this is bad? Wait til October.

  124. 124
    nightjar says:

    Justin the spoof. Say’s the same thing over and over. It would be nice if you could mix it up just a little with something new. Just an idea.

  125. 125
    Kevin says:

    Me too. The fucking things won’t get off the ottoman.

    good thing for you the problem isn’t physical.

  126. 126
    Zuzu says:

    And from the early results it appears that Obama will ‘throw under the bus’ his supporters, and in this case that includes the anti-war crowd

    See, that’s one reason why you guys aren’t being taken seriously.

  127. 127
    Punchy says:

    I’m not sure she comes back from this. Talkleft certainly won’t.

    She’s banned anyone with whom she or Big Dick Democrat doesn’t like. She may have to drop the pro-Clagina shit eventually when she’s finally shown the door, but her audience will be soley composed of fuckheads and lackeys. All the reasonable, moderate commentariat will be long gone.

    And they aint coming back.

  128. 128
    Rick Taylor says:

    1jpb Says:
    Anyway, TL suspended me a few days ago. There was no warning or explanation. And, I’ve really like a lot of those folks, even if that wasn’t always obvious because of my sharply pro-BHO comments.

    They suspended you?!?

    I’m floored. I’m absolutely floored. When I was visiting Talk Left, I made a point of reading your posts, because you were unusually well informed especially about health care, and you generally supported your arguments. You even made that post how you were faithful to Talk Left, because you liked to be challenged. I’m just completely floored.

    I’m glad to see you here; we’re lucky to have you. I’ll do my best to challenge you when I see you on.

  129. 129
    Andrew says:

    OBAMA IS HITLER. OR AXEL THE ROD IS HITLER. SOMEONE IS HITLER. MAYBE ONE OF THEM IS GOEBBELS.

    Vote Hillary ’08!

  130. 130
    Andrew says:

    Sorry, I just wanted to see what being a No Quarter commenter felt like.

  131. 131
    Rick Taylor says:

    There is a commenter at TL with the handle of Squeaky, I think, who is a HC supporter but has kept his head screwed on straight. I read a long thread with him trying to talk down some of the folks there from their delusions. It was fascinating to read the interplay between him( or her) and them . If someone could clone squeaky and send them out to all the hilbot blogs we might could bring them back from the brink.

    The last sane Clinton supporter I saw on Talk Left was suspended. I’m serious. I saw this person, and thought, oh, she supports Hillary, but she’s accepting the electoral reality of what’s likely to happen with Michigan, what else has she posted. . .oh, oh well.

  132. 132

    […] At Talk Left we see Obama being accused of throwing the sixties generation under the bus, prompting John Cole to observe: […]

  133. 133
    Beej says:

    Aaron and Martin,

    It did happen. War protestors did spit on returning soldiers and the pictures got played and replayed on the evening news. There was a popular song back then called “The Universal Soldier”. The chorus went: “He’s the universal soldier and he really is to blame. . . .” A segment of the anti-war movement took it quite literally and acted accordingly. The pictures were shameful and ugly and most Americans, anti-war or not, did not approve of this kind of behavior, but the small proportion that did got tons of publicity. The pics are probably still out there somewhere.

  134. 134
    Beej says:

    Found the lyrics to the song. It was written by Donovan.

    Universal Soldier

    He’s five foot-two, and he’s six feet-four,
    He fights with missiles and with spears.
    He’s all of thirty-one, and he’s only seventeen,
    He’s been a soldier for a thousand years.

    He’a a Catholic, a Hindu, an Atheist, a Jain,
    A Buddhist and a Baptist and a Jew.
    And he knows he shouldn’t kill,
    And he knows he always will,
    Kill you for me my friend and me for you.

    And he’s fighting for Canada,
    He’s fighting for France,
    He’s fighting for the USA,
    And he’s fighting for the Russians,
    And he’s fighting for Japan,
    And he thinks we’ll put an end to war this way.

    And he’s fighting for Democracy,
    He’s fighting for the Reds,
    He says it’s for the peace of all.
    He’s the one who must decide,
    Who’s to live and who’s to die,
    And he never sees the writing on the wall.

    But without him,
    How would Hitler have condemned him at Labau?
    Without him Caesar would have stood alone,
    He’s the one who gives his body
    As a weapon of the war,
    And without him all this killing can’t go on.

    He’s the Universal Soldier and he really is to blame,
    His orders come from far away no more,
    They come from here and there and you and me,
    And brothers can’t you see,
    This is not the way we put an end to war.

  135. 135
    Elissa says:

    1jpb — I’ve read a bunch of your comments on TL as well. You did a great job of standing your ground (and not flipping your lid) in response to some pretty nonsensical and undeserved condescension from BTD.

  136. 136
    cain says:

    , Obama is increasingly seen as running a campaign against his own party. That might sound good if you’ve hated the Democratic party all along

    No, he’s changing the party. From whiny ass party to something with some leadership on some progressive goals. You need to wake up, moveon.org, Dean, Obama, and others ARE changing the party molding it. You’ll note moveon.org is funding the candidates that they want, not what the DLC wants.

    So yeah, it’s happening. Get over it. The old democratic party is going the way of the dodo, and I for one say ‘good riddance’. There’s pontificating on issues especially since they’ve taken over has been pathetic and then backing down when it came to a real challenge is going to change. I realize the Senate doesn’t always have enough votes to get things done, but when they can’t even get members of their own party to vote towards clear and moral goals then something is fucked up.

    cain

  137. 137
    Rick Taylor says:

    In the interests of fairness, there’s at least one pro-Obama blogger that’s flipped his lid as well. John Aravosis’s Americablog, where he’s featuring the Hillary nutcracker, praising Maureen Dowd’s latest screed, awarding “Monicas” for bad behavior, and ignoring the Obama supporters in comments telling him, dude, I support Obama but you’ve got to calm down!

  138. 138
    Jon H says:

    Justin wrote: “And sure, many liberals did NOT accept as adequate the claim that “I was just following orders.” ”

    Clue: The vast majority of German soldiers from WW2 were not tried or punished for fighting in the war. Fighting in a war is not, in itself, a war crime.

    Is it your position that every soldier in Vietnam is a war criminal, from Al Gore, to John Kerry? How about Hugh Thompson the chopper pilot who intervened at My Lai, landed his chopper between the villagers and the soldiers who were slaughtering them, and ordered them to fire on the American soldiers if they tried to continue attacking the villagers? Was he a war criminal?

    Don’t be an ass.

  139. 139
    El Doh says:

    Yeah, that nutcracker’s pretty nasty.

    It’s not like there’s not a wealth of legitimate material to disagree with Hillary on, without resorting to that kind of pathetic crap.

  140. 140
    Martin says:

    The Democratic party needed change. The last few elections were lost due to their own hubris. The elitism charge is at least somewhat warranted. Dems largely ignored the red states – and many of them still want to.

    Yeah, we won’t win Kansas, but oddly enough, we win Nebraska by showing that we care about Kansans to fight there.

    I’m glad that Obama is changing that.

  141. 141

    I tried to read TL a couple weeks ago, the post wasn’t anything particularly good or bad, a little hyperbolic but typical political posturing and then the comments… It only took a few before somebody decided to up the ante, and wound ’em up good. It went from a little silly to way over the edge in a heart beat and continued for 200 or so comments.

    I wondered if some of those weren’t “personas” winding it up just to see where it would go. It is kind of sad to watch people be so earnestly ridiculous. I do not mean the pro-Hillary ideas, I mean the anti-Obama hatred. When you reach the conspiracy theory level where it seems reasonable that Obama is a time traveling space alien who assasinated JFK to successfully run against Hillary in ’08 you’ve lost something you might need, later.

  142. 142
    Genine says:

    Rick Taylor Says:

    In the interests of fairness, there’s at least one pro-Obama blogger that’s flipped his lid as well. John Aravosis’s Americablog, where he’s featuring the Hillary nutcracker, praising Maureen Dowd’s latest screed, awarding “Monicas” for bad behavior, and ignoring the Obama supporters in comments telling him, dude, I support Obama but you’ve got to calm down!

    Wow, that sounds pretty bad. I haven’t read Americablog in a long time, so I had no idea. But I don’t like any divisive, unhinged bullshit like that, whether its Americablog or TalkLeft. Both extremes are really screwed up.

  143. 143
    AnotherBruce says:

    I’m sorry, but Jeralyn is right here. It’s not the Dirty Fucking Hippies that threw the Vietnam Vets under the bus, its the WWII vets, the Korean War Vets and the United States Government Issuers that trashed the VietNam vets for not “winning” the Vietnam war. I’m surprised that given the current war that people on this blog can’t understand that and frankly Obama who opposed the Iraq war can go fuck himself for not understanding that. I’m tired of the “hippies” getting shat on for the sins of our stupid wars. This is a right wing frame from 1972. Surely some of the people here can understand that dynamic.

    Can someone please produce one photo of a DFH spitting on a Vietnam returning troop? Try to google “Hippies spitting on US troops” and see what you get. I’m supporting Obama in this race, mainly because he talks to the average voter as an adult. But this shit is just insulting. And I’m also sick of this “boomer” crap. Every generation has it’s share of good people and assholes, and Obama’s generation will be no different.

  144. 144
    Jon H says:

    John Cole wrote: “Not to get all preachy and the like, because I can be just as bad, but when the Hillary bloggers complain about sexism and double standards, they are not always wrong. I don’t think it gets any clearer than that double standard, right here.”

    On the other hand, Jeralyn’s the one we’re pig-piling on in this thread. Primed like that, it’s no wonder Kleiman wasn’t mocked.

    I’m sure if the roles were reversed, and the thread was about *Kleiman* acting like an asshat, it would be his appearance being raked over the coals.

  145. 145
    socraticsilence says:

    Delia- I gotta be honest if that’s guy was right, I’d be more apt to back Obama, I mean damn, he’s not the Unity Pony, he’s Keyser friggin’ Soze, he’s Bondian Suipervillian, hell his manison probably connect to some old Capone-era tunnels and then to his secret Obamacave under Lake Michigan, man if their paranoid fantasy Obama was real he’d catch Bin laden in about 30 seconds. I’m actually a bit tempted to go over to No Quarter and post about Obama’s links to the African nation of Wakanda (points to anyone who gets the reference and why they’d freak out about it).

  146. 146
    Jess says:

    How about Ponyphobia?

    YES!!!1! We have a winner!

  147. 147
    Jess says:

    Delia- I gotta be honest if that’s guy was right,

    I’m pretty sure that was DougJ she was quoting.

  148. 148
    Jon H says:

    “where he’s featuring the Hillary nutcracker”

    So? That’s about her personality. She claims to be a fighter, after all. And the people she would be fighting would be men. Seems to me some Hillary partisans might well think the Hillary nutcracker is a positive symbol, not a negative. They called Tom DeLay ‘the hammer’, after all. Which is frankly less of an imposing image than a ballbreaker.

    I think the only reason Clinton partisans don’t like it is because she’s losing. If she’d beaten Obama to the nomination, and McCain in the general, Jeralyn would probably be proudly selling the nutcracker on TalkLeft.

  149. 149
    Jess says:

    I have a face for radio, and I don’t think you could get a half hour show out of:

    “Fuck off, Armando.”
    “No, you fuck off, Cole.”

    Hey, I’d tune in for that. I imagine it would be kinda like Imus slapping himself around the studio.

  150. 150
    Jon H says:

    “. I’m actually a bit tempted to go over to No Quarter and post about Obama’s links to the African nation of Wakanda”

    If he cuts off the supply of Vibranium, women will be *pissed*.

  151. 151
    AnotherBruce says:

    “Too many of those who opposed the war in Vietnam chose to blame not only the leaders who ordered the mission, but the young men who simply answered their country’s call.”

    Once again Barack, where is the evidence for this? Maybe you were too young to understand the early 70s.

  152. 152
    cbear says:

    Just finished watching the traitor Feith on the Daily Show and, well I really don’t know what to say other than I hope that miserable cocksucker contracts some dread disease and dies a horrible lonely death. I fervently wish the same fate for all his buddies too.
    And yes, I really do mean that.

    How is it that these people are still able to walk among us, and go on TV, and sell books, and go about their lives with such a complete and utter lack of consequence for their actions?
    How does a society reach a point where it condones the crimes of such people?

    Obviously, I know the answers to those questions, but sometimes the sad realization of all we have lost as a country overcomes my ability to cover that despair with my normal sophomoric attempts at humor.

  153. 153
    Zuzu says:

    AnotherBruce Says:

    I’m sorry, but Jeralyn is right here. It’s not the Dirty Fucking Hippies that threw the Vietnam Vets under the bus, its the WWII vets, the Korean War Vets and the United States Government Issuers that trashed the VietNam vets for not “winning” the Vietnam war.

    I wonder how many people know that it was John Kerry who in the late ’70s co-founded the Vietnam Veterans of America for that very reason. In fact, the group’s motto is: “Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another.”

    VVA history

    Can someone please produce one photo of a DFH spitting on a Vietnam returning troop? Try to google “Hippies spitting on US troops” and see what you get. I’m supporting Obama in this race, mainly because he talks to the average voter as an adult. But this shit is just insulting. And I’m also sick of this “boomer” crap. Every generation has it’s share of good people and assholes, and Obama’s generation will be no different.

    Well, according to an academic who’s researched it and even written a book about it, you can find pictures of anti-war protesters, including plenty of VN vets, getting spit on and beat up by pro-war thugs. But he couldn’t find a single photo, news story, or credible account of a returning vet being spit on:

    Debunking a Spitting Image

    I think subsequently someone did come across a TV news account of a young man claiming he was spit on at an airport, but one could say that actually points up the dearth of real-life examples. Did it happen other times? Possibly. But not at anywhere near the rate claimed.

  154. 154
    Zuzu says:

    AnotherBruce Says:

    “Too many of those who opposed the war in Vietnam chose to blame not only the leaders who ordered the mission, but the young men who simply answered their country’s call.”

    Once again Barack, where is the evidence for this? Maybe you were too young to understand the early 70s.

    Well, I was there.

    Of course there were plenty of anti-war folks who criticized guys who went and fought. There is no denying there was a pervasive anti-military aspect to the anti-war movement, but typically it was directed at the institution. Still, you had demonstrators dumping garbage on an aircraft carrier passing under the Golden Gate Bridge as it returned from VN with the soldiers in their dress whites.

    On the the other hand, there were plenty of efforts to reach out to active duty and recently returned vets.

    Sir! NoSir! archives

    In fact, some of the peace groups were the only ones helping the vets find out their rights and get their benefits.

    I’m just saying you can’t paint with broad brush strokes one way or the other. But Obama was not wrong in saying that some – some – who opposed the war also blamed the soldiers, making the larger point that one can oppose the war but support the soldier.

  155. 155
    Zuzu says:

    Sorry, sailors in their dress whites. Not soldiers.

  156. 156
    bago says:

    Just because we are promogulating false beliefs doesn’t mean we aren’t deceiving you.

  157. 157
    Conservatively Liberal says:

    Justin the spoof. Say’s the same thing over and over. It would be nice if you could mix it up just a little with something new. Just an idea.

    It is all DougJ’s fault. He has spoiled us with top notch spoof, and people like Justin come in and fart. Sigh…

    regarding some sage advice for Justin:

    Don’t be an ass.

    Too late.

    I am one of those ‘dirty hippies’ from the late 60’s/70’s. Hell, I still have the hair that goes to my waist, and have always had. I grew up in a poor neighborhood, one kid out of seven in the house, and I learned all kinds of shit that most people never see or hear about. The seamy side of life, so to say.

    I remember the anti-war protests very vividly, the “Jail to the Chief” rallies against Nixon and the other fun of the time. There were haters on all sides at that time, hippies, establishment types, former and current military and so on. One side blamed the soldiers for failure, the other blamed them for murder.

    But, and this is the important point, it was not a through and though type of thing. Some protesters directed their hate against the soldiers as they were the easiest target. Even though very few incidents happened, some did and there is no denying it. I am not talking about spitting, just showing no respect for them and blaming them for the chaos.

    Up to that point in our history, the public had stood behind the soldiers at war. But not in this case, because people on all sides of the war were angry and wanted to take it out on someone.

    It was shocking (at the time) to hear that soldiers were being treated disrespectfully, and what were a few incidents were conflated into a full blown attack against all soldiers. ‘Patriotic’ people hated the ‘hippies’ for their evil deed, and the war backers pushed it for all it was worth.

    The important point I took away from all of it was that even one soldier being disparaged for their service is too much. They are all brothers in arms, and when hate is directed at one, they feel that it has been directed at all of them.

    I can understand that, and I agree with Obama saying what he did to the vets.

  158. 158
    Prospero says:

    John, since you are helping get out the vote in West Virginia, there must be some dead people you can call.

    That’s just silly. Deathknights are only being added in the next expansion.

  159. 159
    scarshapedstar says:

    Most of us would agree with that sentiment, and I would argue that even if it was just one person mistreating vets, that is too many.

    Oh, for fuck’s sake. I hate arguments like this. Yes, and “some said” that everyone in the World Trade Center deserved to die. “Some said” that they wished they’d have bombed the buildings themselves. “Some say” that they like seeing soldiers die. “Some say” pretty much anything you want to use to make a cheap rhetorical point.

    But how the fuck does it accomplish anything? Oh, right, it helps bring in the deluded asshats and Ann Coulter fans who think that the hippies lost Vietnam. Great! That’s exactly who we need to pander to. Yes, if the Democratic Party needs anything from our awesome nominee who was against the Iraq war, it’s… a cheesy blanket condemnation of the antiwar movement based on nutpicking bullshit!

  160. 160
    Xenos says:

    That stems from something and that something is no less real than when it happens to people on the left – such as when people say that hippies spit on troops, when almost certainly that did happen, or things like it happen, on a small scale.

    A certain number of ultra-chauvinists exist in every movement, whether anti or pro-war, for feminism or cultural consevatism, or whatever. As noted above, some people are just wired that way — the technical neurological term is ‘asshole’. Former anthro majors like me call them ‘manicheanists’, but ‘assholes’ works just fine.

    A critical personality trait of assholes is that they are convinced that everybody else is an asshole, so the asshole has license to lie, smear, and even kill with abandon. See Nixon, Cheney, Bundy.

    While it is generally not fair to condemn a movement by focussing on the assholes in their midst, some movements are driven by assholes and characterised by overall assholery, and some movements and leaders are effectively anti-assholistic.

    The GOP, for example, has been taken over by assholes and is now a Grand Asshole Project. Obama seems to be running as an anti-asshole, while H.R.C. is showing signs of being a crypto-assholist who is revealing her status to her former allies.

  161. 161
    Conservatively Liberal says:

    Well shapedscar, I can care less what Ann Coulter or any other foaming at the mouth wingnut has to say about this. I do care what the servicemen think though, as does Obama. I guess we see this differently.

    Oh well. It ain’t the end of the world.

  162. 162
    D-Chance. says:

    John Cole Says:

    Come to think of it; I’d like to see John Cole do Bloggingheads with BTD.

    I have a face for radio, and I don’t think you could get a half hour show out of:

    “Fuck off, Armando.”
    “No, you fuck off, Cole.”

    Springer’s made a damn fine career for himself airing full hours of stuff like that…

  163. 163
    Dave_Violence says:

    Flabber dee gidgit wibbity wop. ZOOP ZOOP. Vietnam war protestors sucked. Flusbachoon weezgahorn flurpity doo.

    That’s quite a nice translation, lucid, cogent and all them big words apply.

    Good move on Obama’s part. Giving veterans a fair shake is not expensive and I would hope that a president BO would come through for them.

  164. 164
    cleek says:

    but “ODS” is a natural pun! don’t toss it under the _ _ _ !

    and holy crap… never been to NoQuarter before, but wow. what a bunch of lunatics! everything there is a conspiracy; there are “hidden connections” between everyone and everyone else which only they can see: Obama’s a front for Big Oil, the Muslims, the mob, the GOP, the black power movement, Big Business, everything.

    it’s a bit sad, really. those people seem mentally ill.

  165. 165
    Svensker says:

    I was a hippie and I hated the soldiers. Felt sorry for draftees, but in my youthful arrogance, thought they should have gone to jail or to Canada rather than fight. It wasn’t rational, but then hatred for the war and Nixon was high and feelings were running high as well. If you wore a uniform and weren’t part of the antiwar side, then you were the enemy.

    Pretending that the “anti-soldier” folks were all VFW is dumb. Maybe Seattle was a hotbed of anti-soldier hippies, and freaks in the rest of the country thought they were A-OK, but I doubt it.

    The whole argument is dumb. And I don’t feel like Obama “threw me under the bus”.

    Can Hillary please gracefully retire to the sidelines and get her crazed supporters calmed down?

  166. 166
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    I never was spat on nor did I ever meet an actual Vietnam vet who was. The people my age at the time were sympathetic and welcoming. On the other hand, I found it impossible to get hired. One guy, finally told me that employers were leery of us because “You guys, you know, go off. You’d make my other employees nervous.” It was believed (In 1972) that Vietnam vets were all on a short fuse and would suddenly turn violent. I eventually got a job with one of the local school districts. The state would subsidize the pay if they hired a vet. Other than the job part, the only shit I ever caught was from middle aged and older guys who were convinced that we, the troops, had lost the war. I guess that it was unimaginable to them that America could possibly lose to some little guys in black pajamas and flip flops. It will be equally inconceivable to a segment of the population that we could lose to a bunch of Arabs in Iraq. Obama was right to caution against blaming the troops. There are likely plenty of otherwise good people who will look for someone to blame and they will be loathe (As they were in Vietnam days) to blame themselves for voting in the pack of idiots who started the war.

  167. 167

    […] Out Of Her Mind Is it ok to say that a particular woman is being hysterical when she’s actually being hysterical no matter what her gender is? Because this is a hysterical person. […]

  168. 168

    Not much to say about the TL Experience. I’m just one of the growing number of people banned from there.

    Don’t know how old Jeralyn M. is but the whole Lefties hated the Vietnam vet is an overplayed right-wing myth. I left active duty in 1973 and I never experienced the slightest negativity or bad behavior against me during or after service. I was stationed for a year and a half in Massachusetts, the only state that voted for McGovern, and I could’ve been a prince the way I was treated by all the lefties there. Took night classes at Northeastern. My buddy took night classes at Harvard. People would buy me drinks in Cambridge.

    I worked at the VA hospital in San Francisco from ’74 to ’79, working with thousands of vets in the most liberal city in America and never saw or heard of any of this. What I saw was a functioning, caring medical system under the strain of aging WWII vets and returning Vietnam vets. But I never saw or heard of any mistreatment of vets in the community.

    My point is that somewhere someone mistreated a returning vet, but I was in and around places where it would have happened over and over if it were a common occurrance and I never saw or heard about such incidents at the time. It was a right-wing myth circulated to somehow conflate anti-militarism with being anti-soldier (of course, Max Clelland was the best damned head of the VA). So what does Jeralyn use to attack Obama? A right-wing myth. A daily perusal of TL will give every recirculated attack on Obama and way too many of them are right-wing crap.

    That’s what I find so discouraging about Jeralyn. She thinks she’s a liberal but she sounds more and more like a Republican.

  169. 169
    Pug says:

    I never was spat on nor did I ever meet an actual Vietnam vet who was. The people my age at the time were sympathetic and welcoming.

    The whole spitting on returning veterans thing is an urban legend. It was never reported contemporaneously in the media and, if it had happened, I’m sure there would have been some “hippies” brutally assaulted. I think those returning Marines and soldiers were perfectly capable of defending themselves.

    Almost all the young anti-war people of that time had absolutely nothing against the guys who, after all, were drafted to fight. In fact, they thought they were fighting for the soldiers, to bring them home.

    On the other hand, as one boomer to another I’d like to tell Jeralyn to get over herself. All us boomers should. There were deragatory things said and written by some anti-war activists about the troops. One small example would be the song “The Univeral Soldier” by Buffy St. Marie: “He’s the universal soldier and he really is to blame, For without him all this killing can’t go on”. Some carried the flag of North Vietnam at demonstrations. They chanted “Ho Ho Ho Chi Minh”. Those kinds of things should not have been said and done.

  170. 170
    Nikki says:

    In the interests of fairness, there’s at least one pro-Obama blogger that’s flipped his lid as well. John Aravosis’s Americablog, where he’s featuring the Hillary nutcracker, praising Maureen Dowd’s latest screed, awarding “Monicas” for bad behavior, and ignoring the Obama supporters in comments telling him, dude, I support Obama but you’ve got to calm down!

    I stopped reading Americablog right around the time Aravosis gushed all over Katherine Harris, then started deleting comments and banning his commenters when they took offense.

  171. 171
    Soylent Green says:

    Well, I was there.

    Of course there were plenty of anti-war folks who criticized guys who went and fought. There is no denying there was a pervasive anti-military aspect to the anti-war movement, but typically it was directed at the institution.

    I was there too, with my fellow long-haired, draft-deferred, smug and contemptuous pals. We didn’t spit on anyone but we sure as hell gave the stinkeye to any soul we ever saw in uniform, any rank, anywhere. Gave them the finger sometimes, sneered as they walked by. There might have been a nasty exchange of epithets sometimes. But no spitting. I’m sure that’s just an urban legend.

  172. 172
    Jake says:

    I suspect many heads over at TalkLeft are about to explode over this finding:

    With one week until the primary, a new SurveyUSA poll in Oregon finds Sen. Barack Obama leading Sen. Hillary Clinton, 54% to 43%.

    Key finding: “Though the results are only slightly more in favor of Obama than SurveyUSA’s most recent track point, released 11 days ago, before results of North Carolina and Indiana were known, there is movement in Oregon among women. 5 weeks ago, Clinton led by 7 among Oregon women. Today, Obama leads by 7.

    http://politicalwire.com/archi.....regon.html

  173. 173
    nightjar says:

    Of course there were plenty of anti-war folks who criticized guys who went and fought. There is no denying there was a pervasive anti-military aspect to the anti-war movement, but typically it was directed at the institution.

    I think this is the most accurate way to describe the situation back then. The individual acts of some anti- war protesters (more than a small number, but less than many) got magnified, with help from the press, by a pervasive anti-military atmosphere throughout the country. The pro-war folks added to this atmosphere also, in their criticisms of losing the first American war.

  174. 174
    Soylent Green says:

    That’s what I find so discouraging about Jeralyn. She thinks she’s a liberal but she sounds more and more like a Republican.

    Justin, you guys are very very good at projecting onto us what you and your candidate are doing. I think you must be privately embarrassed by some of her tactics and by the increasing absurdity of the the diatribes on your blogs. We have seen this behavior before, on the Republican side, for years. Your worst offenders have stirred Hillary supporters into such an anti-Obama lather that they now represent a genuine risk toward a Dem victory in the general. You are responsible for whatever views you hold (and entitled to them) but you can stop trying to pin them all on us. It’s a transparent cover for the fact that your side lost.

  175. 175
    Original Lee says:

    I have one cousin who went to Canada and another cousin who is still MIA, so I guess you could say the divide went straight down the middle of my family. I think the spitting thing was originally intended metaphorically, because going to the PX with my uncle (who was also active duty at the time) was something of an adventure – we never knew if the car would be surrounded by yelling college students as we approached the base, or if the car would get rocked at the stoplight, or something of that nature. Nobody actually spit on us, but sometimes it felt as if they might as well have. I also think the reaction to vets was kind of a local thing – some communities would be supportive than others. My home town seemed to hold the Air Force and Navy vets in higher esteem than the Army vets, but I have no idea why – just my perception.

  176. 176

    Like I said, I spent almost five years with thousands of vets and I NEVER heard of anyone getting mistreated for their service, much less spit on. IN SAN FRANCISCO.

    On the other hand, there were a lot of vets who were physically and emotionally scarred by their service and needed a lot of care. That’s another reason why the current administration is so odious, the way the use up and abandon our soldiers once they’re back stateside.

  177. 177
    Harley says:

    AnotherBruce,

    I was there, too. And a lot of venom — not spit, mind you, but venom — was directed at returning soldiers. The heroes, so it went, were those who refused to serve. I know this becuz it was my own deeply held opinion. And not one that i’m proud of in retrospect. (The My Lai massacre was a tipping point in this regard, IMO.)

  178. 178

    John, those hikes in the hills are some of the best exercising in the world. I’m going up Montara Mountain this morning.

    Regarding spokespeople in Hillaryland, I notice that eriposte over at The Left Coaster has disappeared for over a week now. I had suggested in a comment that he really needed to get away from things to get readjusted to the world outside the bunker. I hope it’s that.

  179. 179
    libarbarian says:

    Flabber dee gidgit wibbity wop. ZOOP ZOOP. Vietnam war protestors sucked. Flusbachoon weezgahorn flurpity doo.

    Rabbity-gibbet John Zerbeop Cole, ferrgit disses ippity-gibbip people drakkhiz with frazzle crazy jovvum speaking hizzzowwww impediments.

  180. 180
    libarbarian says:

    We didn’t spit on anyone but we sure as hell gave the stinkeye to any soul we ever saw in uniform, any rank, anywhere. Gave them the finger sometimes, sneered as they walked by.

    My father wan’t a vet, he was a Coast Guard Academy cadet, and he was hassled by morons like you when wearing his uniform – even though that uniform is more closely associated with rescuing drowning people than dropping bombs on.

    Why are you proud of being a spoiled self-absorbed little prick in your youth?

  181. 181
    The Other Steve says:

    As Dennis – SGMM noted, there were a lot of fallout towards Vietnam vets, in terms of being demonized, shunned, or neglected that came from quarters of the nation that weren’t war protestors.

    I was born in ’68, and wasn’t around at the time, but even by 1980 or so as a child I “knew” Vietnam vets were unstable and easily enraged. How did I know? Well, I had friends whose fathers fought, and they told me because they “knew” too.

    Rambo First Blood script wasn’t created out of thin air. You don’t create a story like that without some small basis in perception.

    Obama’s quote probably could have been more clear, but I see nothing in there about spitting on soldiers and I see nothing in there that lays this guilt solely on the backs of war protestors.

    I’m always amazed at how outraged people get towards politicians who speak the truth. Ohwell.

  182. 182
    Jon H says:

    Another Bruce wrote: “Once again Barack, where is the evidence for this? Maybe you were too young to understand the early 70s.”

    The Buffy St. Marie song would seem to be adequate evidence against your case. Obama said nothing about spitting, after all. Bringing that up is just moving the goalposts.

    Personally, I’d find it *very* odd if Kent State hadn’t resulted in at least some animosity towards soldiers. (Sure, those were Nat. Guard, but I doubt that distinction would matter for much.)

  183. 183
    Jim says:

    I dunno, I have to give the wackiest pro-Hillary website to Taylor Marsh. The commenters there make the TL folks seem reasonably sane.

  184. 184
    MNPundit says:

    I would like to point out that while Talk Left is collectively nuts, that returning soldiers SHOULD bear some consequences for actions they took that violated Geneva Convention rules.

    However Obama is completely right in that the focus should have been on the leadership more than the individual soldiers and that focusing on the individual soldiers the way presumably Jeralyn did back in the day was actually counter-productive to ending the war and changing policy.

  185. 185
    Z says:

    My dad served during the Vietnam war. He has nasty stories to tell about anti-war protesters.

    But the tenor of this debate is the point to me. Boomers hate to have it pointed out that SOME of them are absolutely divisive and responsible for the shameful state of politics today, but here it is. You have people getting into shrieking hysterics at the VERY IDEA that some anti-war protesters acted badly! An attack on the bad actors is an attack on the whole movement! How dare it be suggested that a few of them really sucked and actually deserved right wing criticism.

    And then you here the same kind of stuff from the right wing. Don’t EVER suggest that maybe the Vietnam war was a really bad idea. That maybe all the domino theories about communism were completely bogus and that either we never should have gotten in or should have gotten the Hell out when the French did. Because if you do, you’re just the like the dirty hippies! How dare you not support a mission soldier’s died for! How dare you suggest that maybe some of the hippies actually had a valid point!

    Pot meet kettle.

  186. 186
    Pug says:

    I dunno, I have to give the wackiest pro-Hillary website to Taylor Marsh.

    Better check out NO QAURTER before you make a call.

  187. 187
    Richard Bottoms says:

    Your worst offenders have stirred Hillary supporters into such an anti-Obama lather that they now represent a genuine risk toward a Dem victory in the general.

    You know what smells good: Victory.

    The Democrats smell it and Obama is going to have all the cash and support he needs to kick McCain’s ass.

  188. 188
    Richard Bottoms says:

    You have people getting into shrieking hysterics at the VERY IDEA that some anti-war protesters acted badly!

    Horrors. You don’t think for a moment that Republicans are posting on these blogs and pretending to be Democrats do you, because I just don’t see how they could stoop so low.

    /snark off

  189. 189
    Tax Analyst says:

    John Cole Says:

    These Hillary bloggers are really certifiable. I feel like I am watching a mirror image of myself from 2002-2005.

    I didn’t start coming over here to Balloon Juice until late 2004 (as a reader only for quite a while), but I don’t remember you as being that bad, although I did disagree with quite a few of your positions. What I did notice is that you were willing to let other points of view have their say. That’s why I kept coming back.

    I also like that you occasionally take time to defend the lame and stupid now and then when they are folks you know and perhaps agreed with in some ways in either your earlier Republican mode or since your reincarnation as a Democrat.

    I haven’t gone over to look at TL and I don’t really have any reason to do so. I leave it to others to bring me selected droppings from places like that. It’s much easier on my brain to do so.

  190. 190
    liberal says:

    John Cole wrote, Most of us would agree with that sentiment, and I would argue that even if it was just one person mistreating vets, that is too many.

    (1) I started the primary season not all that impressed with any of the Dem candidates.
    (2) I agree with your sentiment that Hillary jumped the shark a long time ago.
    (3) I agree with your sentiment that a lot of these Hillary supported are deranged and deluded.

    However, I simply must disagree with you here.

    (4) People talk all the time about how war opponents were hostile to returning vets, but don’t seem to back it up with statistics. I would reckon that society as a whole wasn’t welcoming them, because we didn’t “win” the war. But it seems unfair to single out war opponents in this vain.
    (5) “…even just one person…”: in the realm of politics, society, and whatnot, that seems like a strange way of putting it, given (again) that the antiwar folks (then as now) were right. If your _practical_ ethics, political activity, etc, is driven by “…even just one person…,” you’ll get tripped up. How does “If even one member of the US Armed Forces commits a war crime in Iraq?” sound? What would be the consequence of such a statement? What conclusions could we reasonably draw? This line of thought could just as well be applied to any “…even just one person…” statement. “If even just one person attacks opponents of the war in the Vietnam with ill-conceived arguments…”

    Most importantly, I think Obama’s dead wrong here. He’s contributing to the “stab in the back” myth. The notion that war opponents “disrespected” the troops then and now is one of the things keeping us in Iraq. The confused notion that we can’t question US military adventures because that would be “not supporting the troops,” when held by enough of the populace, is one of the drivers of unnecessary war.

  191. 191
    Xenos says:

    Obama is not contributing to the myth, he is disarming it, acknowledging the power of a myth he is trying to move beyond. You can argue facts and anecdotes all day long (I was born in 1966, so I am agnostic on the issue), but the right has been pushing the spitting hippie meme for years. Arguing whether there was one, three, five or five hundred spitting hippies is not going to get us anywhere.

    What matters is blocking this from being an issue WRT to the Iraq fiasco. That is what Obama is doing here.

  192. 192
    Zuzu says:

    But the tenor of this debate is the point to me. Boomers hate to have it pointed out that SOME of them are absolutely divisive and responsible for the shameful state of politics today, but here it is.

    I turned 18 in 1968. Graduated from high school between the MLK and RFK assassinations and just before the Chicago convention debacle.

    It was enough to completely disillusion me, and even though I wasn’t old enough to vote then, I joined the many others of my generation who sat out the political process for a good long time.

    The result? Two terms of Richard Nixon. Six more years and tens of thousands more deaths in Vietnam.

    That’s one reason I want to scream when I see people threatening not to vote out of pique.

  193. 193
    Zuzu says:

    The notion that war opponents “disrespected” the troops then and now is one of the things keeping us in Iraq. The confused notion that we can’t question US military adventures because that would be “not supporting the troops,” when held by enough of the populace, is one of the drivers of unnecessary war.

    To be fair, Obama took pains to point out that one can oppose the Iraq war and support the troops:

    Allegiance to these ideals has always been at the core of American patriotism – it’s what unites a country of so many different opinions and beliefs. It’s why some of us may disagree on our decision to start this war in Iraq, but all of us stand united in our support for the brave men and women who wage it. That’s how it should be.

  194. 194
    liberal says:

    Xenos wrote, Obama is not contributing to the myth, he is disarming it, acknowledging the power of a myth he is trying to move beyond.

    He might be “taking the sting out” by bringing it up now—yes, that’s a type of disarming. But IMHO he’s clearly acknowledging and agreeing with the stab-in-the-back story. The effect of that is to effectively concede a large amount of rhetorical ground to those pushing pro-war memes.

  195. 195
    liberal says:

    Zuzu wrote, To be fair, Obama took pains to point out that one can oppose the Iraq war and support the troops:

    Fair enough. But by conceding the other point about Vietnam’s aftermath, I still think he’s strengthening the stabbed-in-the-back myth, and doing so unnecessarily.

  196. 196
    liberal says:

    Z wrote, But the tenor of this debate is the point to me. Boomers hate to have it pointed out that SOME of them are absolutely divisive and responsible for the shameful state of politics today, but here it is. You have people getting into shrieking hysterics at the VERY IDEA that some anti-war protesters acted badly! An attack on the bad actors is an attack on the whole movement! How dare it be suggested that a few of them really sucked and actually deserved right wing criticism.

    You miss the point—completely, I might add.

    If someone utters fair criticism, that’s great. Honest criticism means holding people responsible for their actions, in rough proportion to the moral impact of their actions.

    Attacking the antiwar movement because some unspecified fraction of them weren’t nice to returning soldiers, while giving a pass to the people whose actions and political support led to the deaths of tens of thousands of US soldiers and literally millions of Indochinese is not fair, honest criticism. It’s rather a rhetorical device to ensure that criticism of militarism is out of bounds.

  197. 197
    Zuzu says:

    Fair enough. But by conceding the other point about Vietnam’s aftermath, I still think he’s strengthening the stabbed-in-the-back myth, and doing so unnecessarily.

    But given how many examples given just on this thread, it can’t be said it didn’t ever happen. And there’s no getting around the fact that many, many vets still feel bitter that they weren’t always treated fairly.

    I just don’t see the problem with making the distinction between the two eras, especially in a speech dealing with the need to ensure full veteranss’ benefits for those returning from this war.

  198. 198
    Rick Taylor says:

    Fair enough. But by conceding the other point about Vietnam’s aftermath, I still think he’s strengthening the stabbed-in-the-back myth, and doing so unnecessarily.

    I actually agree. This is part of Obama’s unity shtick that annoys me a little, putting distance between himself and the more shrill opposition to conservatism. He’s done it consistently for a long while, it’s nothing new. It’s mildly annoying but not nearly enough to loose my support. So I sort of understand Jeralyn’s point, except that the fact she’d pull that one bit out of a much larger piece and focus entirely on that, as well as taking offense to Obama’s describing those who served in Vietnam as answering their country’s call, shows she’s obsessed with finding whatever fault she can with Obama. I hope she gets tired of that after he’s officially won the nomination.

    It’s kind of funny, because in the past they’ve trashed Obama for alienating more conservative Democratic voters, with his bitter-gate comments and Wright and so on. But then when he makes an attempt to reach out to those voters, he’s giving the back of the hand to us on the left.

  199. 199
    Delia says:

    Well, you have to give Sully his due on this one. He said way back when that a big reason he was supporting Obama was because he got past the whole boomer mired-in-the-past thing. And it’s amazing how many of these fake issues that people keep dragging up to try to bring him down are precisely that. Vietnam. The Weather Underground. And that’s the reason young people are supporting him. They’re sick to death of these things. And yes, I’m a boomer, too. And no. I never harassed a Vietnam vet. Hell, I lived in Utah. I’d have been insane. Even though I was a member of the antiwar movement in Logan, Utah, such as it was.

    And BTW. Donovan wrote that Universal Soldier song, huh? Well, no wonder it’s so bad.

  200. 200
    Jon H says:

    liberal wrote: ” is not fair, honest criticism”

    Good thing he didn’t do that.

  201. 201
    Daniel Koffler says:

    I suspect many heads over at TalkLeft are about to explode over this finding

    Jake, they’ll just ignore it. For Christ’s sake, there wasn’t a single mention of Clinton’s “hard working Americans, white Americans” riff outside the comments there, and I’d bet any comments that referenced it have since been deleted.

  202. 202
    liberal says:

    Rick Taylor wrote, I actually agree. This is part of Obama’s unity shtick that annoys me a little…

    Me, I did vote for Obama in hte primaries, and really don’t like Hillary based on her behavior, though would vote for her over McCain in a heartbeat. Also gave considerable $$ to Obama after only he and Hill were left.

  203. 203
    kindness says:

    I used to read TalkLeft and Taylor Marsh daily.

    I can’t any more. I’ve tried to comment in threads on TalkLeft but it became apparent some time ago that unless you were a full blown Kool-Aide Clintonite, you might as well be cheering for dubya & Darth. The commentors go out of their way to get their panties tied up in bunches. I’ve been threatened and had comments that weren’t angry nor out of line deleted. It’s definelty gone to their crazy lil heads.

    And Taylor Marsh…..I don’t even read the front pages any more.

    It’s sad.

  204. 204
    Z says:

    The effect of that is to effectively concede a large amount of rhetorical ground to those pushing pro-war memes.

    I don’t agree, and I think statements like this are a large part of the problem. The fact is that quite a number of Vets (my Dad, for one) remember being treated badly after the Vietnam War. That isn’t conceding ‘rhetorical ground,’ that is acknowledging reality. Sure it wasn’t as widespread as the right likes to say, but denial on the left and exaggeration on the right are too sides of the same tribalism coin.

    Now you might quibble with using Vietnam as an example, because war boosters did cause a LOT more objective harm, that’s fine. There are other examples where the liberals of the era caused real harm, even if it took a while for that harm to be obvious. As someone who has watched several friends struggle with drug addiction and have at least one who is HIV positive, I can say without reservation that the drug and free love culture had some nasty, damaging consequences. While I’ve heard plenty of discussion about that from the right wing, I’ve heard next to none from the left.

    And before you even go there, its not like I’d like to return to the 50’s. But it would be great if both sides weren’t, for the most part, so frickin’ rigid that they could actually see where the other side was coming from.

  205. 205
    liberal says:

    Zuzu wrote, But given how many examples given just on this thread, it can’t be said it didn’t ever happen. And there’s no getting around the fact that many, many vets still feel bitter that they weren’t always treated fairly.

    I’m not saying it never happened. I’m saying that any moral calculus for which these “unwelcoming” acts by antiwar people is even in the same league, let alone worse than, the actions and beliefs that led to the slaughter and murder of Ameircan soldiers and Indochinese is a completely screwed up moral calculus. It doesn’t matter who holds it. If a vet holds it, it’s understandable, but still completely screwed up.

    I just don’t see the problem with making the distinction between the two eras, especially in a speech dealing with the need to ensure full veteranss’ benefits for those returning from this war.

    What useful distinction would you draw?

  206. 206
    Zuzu says:

    I just don’t see the problem with making the distinction between the two eras, especially in a speech dealing with the need to ensure full veteranss’ benefits for those returning from this war.

    What useful distinction would you draw?

    Look, the point of the speech was that he wants to see vets get their due, and he supports their rights completely. And this is not in any way contradicted by the fact that he and many others have opposed the war. Acknowledging that there are left-over feelings from last time, and making the distinction, is not a horrible way to underscore your point.

    What useful distinction would I draw? Well, probably a pretty similar distinction, but being on the weaseley side, I would probably couch the whole thing in passive terms: “Too many times not only the leaders who ordered the mission were blamed, but the young men who simply answered their country’s call.”

    But that’s just ’cause I’m a bit of a weasel.

  207. 207
    liberal says:

    Z wrote, Now you might quibble with using Vietnam as an example, because war boosters did cause a LOT more objective harm, that’s fine.

    A lot more objective harm? That’s putting it mildly.

    The US murdered—yes, an accurate term, since it was a war of aggression—_millions_ of Vietnamese. Not to mention sending tens of thousands of GIs to their deaths.

    On the other hand, some war protestors treated some returning vets badly.

    If, in your moral universe, those two are even remotely comparable, your moral sense is completely screwed up.

    As someone who has watched several friends struggle with drug addiction and have at least one who is HIV positive, I can say without reservation that the drug and free love culture had some nasty, damaging consequences. While I’ve heard plenty of discussion about that from the right wing, I’ve heard next to none from the left.

    First, you’re trying to change the subject—the argument here is this bit about vets and war protestors, not the merits of “right” versus “left” in general.

    Second, if you think there’s never been a discussion on the “left” about the ill effects of free love and drugs, you either don’t read very much, or have a very narrow view of “the left”.

    As for HIV, I don’t follow the argument. Liberals/leftists have argued for safe sex and treatment of IV drug addicts. What morally superior solution to the problem are you alluding to?

  208. 208
    John Cole says:

    The point of the god damned speech was to show veterans that he understands they have been shit on in the past, and that despite his talk, John McCain will fuck them as President as he is fucking them now with the GI Bill he refuses to support.

    That Jeralynn and others decided to take the speech and decide it was a coded message to attack anti-war protestors is a problem Jeralynn needs to fucking sort out. Not Obama, not the commenters here.

    Any other interpretation of the speech is just bullshit.

  209. 209
    liberal says:

    Zuzu wrote, Look, the point of the speech was that he wants to see vets get their due, and he supports their rights completely.

    Unless you’re prepared to enumerate such rights, it’s a meaningless statement.

    For example: suppose a returning vet runs for Congress. Does he have the “right” to claim some kind of moral high ground because he’s a vet?

    Acknowledging that there are left-over feelings from last time, and making the distinction, is not a horrible way to underscore your point.

    Incoherent. On the one hand, we have mass murderers (again, a few million Vietnamese and tens of thousands of GIs) and their supporters. On the other hand, we have some people who were “mean”. Why would anyone crafting a morally appropriate point even bother mentioning the latter?

  210. 210
    liberal says:

    John Cole wrote, The point of the god damned speech was to show veterans that he understands they have been shit on in the past…

    The vets of Vietnam are not the same as the vets of Iraq. Former included many conscripts. Latter, none.

    That Jeralynn and others decided to take the speech and decide it was a coded message to attack anti-war protestors is a problem Jeralynn needs to fucking sort out.

    I agree—it wasn’t a coded message. It was an explicit message.

  211. 211
    Hypatia says:

    But it’s not a bullshit point if the people at the time did feel as though the actions described were likely to happen to them. That stems from something and that something is no less real than when it happens to people on the left – such as when people say that hippies spit on troops, when almost certainly that did happen, or things like it happen, on a small scale.

    I take your point, but it does seem opportunistic for Obama to be pushing this guff now. It’s not as if he’s taking a bold stand against the legions of folks out there today who are celebrating such actions. I understand he’s under fire for being a crazed lefty and he has to do some maneuvering, but cheap shots of dubious accuracy are not the way to go. It seems to me there are other, more solid ways for him to ingratiate himself with a certain class of veterans, and I understand he has a fair amount of military support already. Our vets of today and yesterday need a lot of help that they’re not getting. Let’s focus on that.

  212. 212
    liberal says:

    Of course, I meant On the one hand, we have mass murderers (again, whose victims include a few million Vietnamese and tens of thousands of GIs) and their supporters.

  213. 213
    liberal says:

    Hypatia wrote, I understand he’s under fire for being a crazed lefty and he has to do some maneuvering, but cheap shots of dubious accuracy are not the way to go.

    Exactly.

    Anyone who sees this as anything other than “no, I’m not that radical, I can criticize the actions of Vietnam-era antiwar activists, too!” is willfully blind on the topic.

    It’s fine to say that such posturing is forgiveable, or that other parts of Obama’s message are important (e.g. vets benefits), but to claim that his phrasing of it isn’t benefiting the stabbed-in-the-back story is silly.

  214. 214
    Z says:

    That Jeralynn and others decided to take the speech and decide it was a coded message to attack anti-war protestors is a problem Jeralynn needs to fucking sort out.

    I agree—-it wasn’t a coded message. It was an explicit message.

    Shorter liberal: Any criticism (no matter how valid and even if it is based on genuine concerns of current and former veterans) of some people in the anti-war movement is an attack on the entire antiwar movement and is bad, bad, bad. Besides, conservatives are worse.

  215. 215
    liberal says:

    Z wrote, Shorter liberal: Any criticism (no matter how valid and even if it is based on genuine concerns of current and former veterans) of some people in the anti-war movement is an attack on the entire antiwar movement and is bad, bad, bad.

    Not-so-shorter Z: I have such a pathetic moral sense, I don’t understand that murdering millions of Vietnamese and sending thousands of GIs to their deaths is at least a wee bit more problematic than a few “mean” antiwar protestors.

    Nor do I have even the faintest clue of the point here—if this is genuine, well-deserved criticism, then where’s the criticism in the campaign of those who executed the Vietnamese war, or those who supported it? Or—perish the thought—is criticism of the 1960s war movement politically acceptable, yet criticism of the 1960s pro-war faction verboten? If so, why, and why should this be tolerated?

  216. 216
    Ed Drone says:

    And BTW. Donovan wrote that Universal Soldier song, huh? Well, no wonder it’s so bad.

    Actually, it’s that bad because it was written by Buffy Ste. Marie. But one thing in its favor is that it doesn’t put the blame on “others.” The last stanza says,

    “… his orders come from far away no more.
    They come from him and you and me,
    And brother can’t you see,
    This is not the way we put an end to war.”

    It’s for this reason that I sing “Where Have All the Flowers Gone” with a change:

    “When will we ever learn? When will we ever learn?”

    (The original had it “When will they ever learn?)

    Ed

  217. 217
    Zuzu says:

    The point of the god damned speech was to show veterans that he understands they have been shit on in the past, and that despite his talk, John McCain will fuck them as President as he is fucking them now with the GI Bill he refuses to support.

    YES !!

  218. 218
    Zuzu says:

    Zuzu wrote, Look, the point of the speech was that he wants to see vets get their due, and he supports their rights completely.

    Unless you’re prepared to enumerate such rights, it’s a meaningless statement.

    For example: suppose a returning vet runs for Congress. Does he have the “right” to claim some kind of moral high ground because he’s a vet?

    Yeah, how about a vet claiming he can turn “right” on a red light? Not that that would be a misconstruction or anything.

    Here’s exactly what rights Obama enumerated in his speech, which is, after all, what we’re talking about:

    At the same time, we must never forget that honoring this service and upholding these ideals requires more than saluting our veterans as they march by on Veterans Day or Memorial Day. It requires marching with them for the care and benefits they have earned It requires standing shoulder-to-shoulder with our veterans and their families after the guns fall silent and the cameras are turned off. At a time when we’re facing the largest homecoming since the Second World War, the true test of our patriotism is whether we will serve our returning heroes as well as they’ve served us.

    We know that over the last eight years, we’ve already fallen short of meeting this test. We all learned about the deplorable conditions that were discovered at places like Fort Bragg and Walter Reed. We’ve all walked by a veteran whose home is now a cardboard box on a street corner in the richest nation on Earth. We’ve all heard about what it’s like to navigate the broken bureaucracy of the VA – the impossibly long lines, or the repeated calls for help that get you nothing more than an answering machine. Just a few weeks ago, an 89-year-old World War II veteran from South Carolina told his family, “No matter what I apply for at the VA, they turn me down.” The next day, he walked outside of an Outpatient Clinic in Greenville and took his own life.

    How can we let this happen? How is that acceptable in the United States of America? The answer is, it’s not. It’s an outrage. And it’s a betrayal – a betrayal – of the ideals that we ask our troops to risk their lives for.

    But it doesn’t have to be this way. Not in this country. Not if we decide that this time will be different. There are many aspects of this war that have gone inalterably wrong, but caring for our veterans is one thing we can still get right. When I arrived in the Senate, I sought out a seat on the Veterans Affairs Committee so I could fight to give our veterans the care they need and the benefits they deserve. We fought to make sure that the claims of disabled veterans in Illinois and other states were being heard fairly, and we forced the VA to conduct an unprecedented outreach campaign to disabled veterans who receive lower-than-average benefits. I passed laws to get homeless veterans off the streets and prevent at-risk veterans from getting there in the first place. I led a bipartisan effort to improve outpatient facilities at places like Walter Reed, and slash red tape, and reform the disability process – because recovering troops should go to the front of the line, and they shouldn’t have to fight to get there. I passed laws to give family members health care while they care for injured troops, and to provide family members with a year of job protection, so they never have to face a choice between caring for a loved one and keeping a job.

    But there is so much more work that we need to do in this country.

    It starts with being honest about the sacrifices that our brave men and women are making. For years, this Administration has refused to count all of our casualties in uniform. In Iraq alone, tens of thousands of troops who were injured or fell ill have not been counted in our casualty numbers, going against the military’s own standards from past wars. It’s time to stop hiding the full cost of this war. It’s time to honor the full measure of sacrifice of our troops, and to prepare for the cost of their care.

    That’s why I’ve pledged to build a 21st century VA as President. It means no more red tape – it’s time to give every service-member electronic copies of medical and service records upon discharge. It means no more shortfalls – we’ll fully fund VA health care, and add more Vet Centers, particularly in rural areas. It means no more delays – we’ll pass on-time budgets. It means no more means-testing – it’s time to allow every veteran into the VA system. And it means we’ll have a simple principle for veterans sleeping on our streets: zero tolerance. As President, I’ll build on the work I started in the Senate and expand housing vouchers, and launch a new supportive services housing program to prevent at-risk veterans and their families from sliding into homelessness.

    I’ll also build on the work I did in the Senate to confront one of the signature injuries of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – PTSD. We have to understand that for far too many troops and their families, the war doesn’t end when they come home. Just the other day our own government’s top psychiatric researcher said that because of inadequate mental health care, the number of suicides among veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan may actually exceed the number of combat deaths. Think about that. Think about how only half of the returning soldiers with PTSD receive the treatment they need. Think of how many we turn away – of how many we let fall through the cracks. We have to do better than this.

    In the Senate, I’ve helped lead a bipartisan effort to stop the unfair practice of kicking out troops who suffer from them. And when I’m President, we’ll enhance mental health screening and treatment at all levels: from enlistment, to deployment, to reentry into civilian life. We also need more mental health professionals, more training to recognize signs and to reject the stigma of seeking care. And we need to dramatically improve screening and treatment for the other signature injury of the war, Traumatic Brain Injury. That’s why I passed measures in the Senate to increase screening for these injuries, and that’s why I’ll establish clearer standards of care as President.

    We have called on our troops and their families for so much during these last years, but we haven’t always issued that call responsibly. Yes, we need to restore twelve month Army deployments, but we also need to restore adequate training and time at home between those deployments. My wife, Michelle, met with Army spouses the other day in North Carolina who told her about the toll it takes to watch your loved one serve tour after tour of duty with little to no time off in between. And they told her something we all need to remember: “We don’t just deploy our troops overseas, we deploy families.” That’s why we also need to provide more counseling and resources to help families cope with multiple tours.

    And when our loved ones do come home, it is time for the United States of America to offer this generation of returning heroes the same thanks we offered that earlier, Greatest Generation – by giving every veteran the same opportunity that my grandfather had under the GI Bill.

    There is no reason we shouldn’t pass the 21st Century GI Bill that is being debated in Congress right now. It was introduced by my friend Senator Jim Webb, a Marine who served as Navy Secretary under President Ronald Reagan.. His plan has widespread support from Republicans and Democrats. It would provide every returning veteran with a real chance to afford a college education, and it would not harm retention.

    Acknowledging that there are left-over feelings from last time, and making the distinction, is not a horrible way to underscore your point.

    Incoherent. On the one hand, we have mass murderers (again, a few million Vietnamese and tens of thousands of GIs) and their supporters. On the other hand, we have some people who were “mean”. Why would anyone crafting a morally appropriate point even bother mentioning the latter?

    Obama speech

  219. 219
    Zuzu says:

    Sorry, last part of comment got included in speech blockquote.

    Treating it separately here:

    Acknowledging that there are left-over feelings from last time, and making the distinction, is not a horrible way to underscore your point.

    Incoherent. On the one hand, we have mass murderers (again, a few million Vietnamese and tens of thousands of GIs) and their supporters. On the other hand, we have some people who were “mean”. Why would anyone crafting a morally appropriate point even bother mentioning the latter?

    Because he wasn’t talking about the entire context of the Vietnam war. He was talking about how veterans were treated – or perceived their treatment – by the public upon returning from Vietnam, and how they are treated now.

  220. 220
    Jon H says:

    liberal wrote: “Anyone who sees this as anything other than “no, I’m not that radical, I can criticize the actions of Vietnam-era antiwar activists, too!” is willfully blind on the topic.”

    Because, as we all know, boomer anti-war protesters are freaking saints before whom we must all bow and scrape and genuflect for all goddamn time.

    Get over yourself. You protested Vietnam? Who gives a shit – your generation rose to power, but hey, Kissinger’s still walking around free, so what was the fucking point? You all lost interest and went chasing coke and weed and money for the next 30 years.

    You can all bite my taint.

    Some protesters were assholes, and when that’s acknowledged you can just suck it up.

  221. 221
    Jon H says:

    liberal wrote:” I have such a pathetic moral sense, I don’t understand that murdering millions of Vietnamese and sending thousands of GIs to their deaths is at least a wee bit more problematic than a few “mean” antiwar protestors.”

    The issues would appear to be orthogonal. You might have a point if Obama was saying that protesters had mistreated LBJ, Nixon, Macnamara, and the other policy makers.

    But hey, if you think the best way to lash out at those who murdered millions was through some hippie’s incoherent vituperation at a returned draftee, then you’re a just a moron.

  222. 222
    Z says:

    Liberal,

    I don’t think you get what I am saying at all. So I am going to list it out line by line, in hopes that you will stop with the strawman crap.

    1. The Vietnam War was a horrible mistake. This is a foregone conclusion of most of the people in my generation.
    2. The soldiers who fought in that war were not at fault for that war. The were doing their duty. They should be commended for that.
    3. The anti-war movement did a good thing by ending the war.
    4. However, some individuals in the anti-war movement treated returning soldiers badly. This added insult to injury, as being in that war was a difficult and horrifying experience for many of those soldiers.
    5. That behavior of those individuals should be condemned, as the war wasn’t the soldier’s fault.

    Now unless you think the soldiers SHOULD have been held responsible for the war, there is no way in Hell that this is a criticism of the entire anti-war movement. However, the hyperbolic, raw tribalism you displayed by acting like any criticism of SOME of you, is a criticism of ALL of you and EVERYTHING you stood for, is typical of many members of your generation (liberal and conservative), in my experience. And it is that very reactive tribalism that still has liberals and conservatives fighting over the 60’s, 40 f**king years later, instead of actually rolling up their sleeves and solving the VERY REAL problems we have TODAY.

  223. 223
    Zuzu says:

    Get over yourself. You protested Vietnam? Who gives a shit – your generation rose to power, but hey, Kissinger’s still walking around free, so what was the fucking point? You all lost interest and went chasing coke and weed and money for the next 30 years.

    Oh please.

    I wrote above that the fact that so many of us wilfully removed ourselves from the mainstream political process probably ensured 8 years of Nixon and all that entailed, I am proud of the many productive changes we brought about or were part of.

    It’s arguable that the antiwar movement brought an end to the VN war more quickly.

    It’s factual that my generation ushered in a time of “alternative politics” or grassroots organizing that thrives today: the ecology movement, women’s rights, participatory community planning, attitudes in and about education…

    And most of us willingly gave of ourselves to the community. I’d hope that we passed a lot of those values on to our kids. I know I did.

  224. 224
    Zuzu says:

    Correction: BUT I am proud of the many productive changes …

  225. 225
    libarbarian says:

    People talk all the time about how war opponents were hostile to returning vets, but don’t seem to back it up with statistics.

    Are you naive or disingenuous?

    Speaking as a statistician, to have meaningful “statistics” requires that we have something to measure/quantify first. Since most disrespect of the troops people in almost any uniform was done off the cuff and at times and locations where there wasn’t a census official on-hand to record it, exactly what are we supposed to use to compile these statistics that you expect to “back up” stories?

    This is like some neo-confederate asking for statistics regarding how shitty the life of slaves was. We can compile some rudimentary statistics from death records and such things that were recorded, but since we know that the majority of punishments, beatings, rapes, other indignities that were committed on slaves were NEVER recorded, we also know that most statistics are going to paint a systematically biased picture that underestimates the brutality of the system.

    Likewise, most incidents of hassling vets and other people in uniforms, are not normally going to make the papers or otherwise be recorded anywhere but our memories.

  226. 226
    Soylent Green says:

    libarbarian Says:

    We didn’t spit on anyone but we sure as hell gave the stinkeye to any soul we ever saw in uniform, any rank, anywhere. Gave them the finger sometimes, sneered as they walked by.

    My father wan’t a vet, he was a Coast Guard Academy cadet, and he was hassled by morons like you when wearing his uniform – even though that uniform is more closely associated with rescuing drowning people than dropping bombs on.

    Why are you proud of being a spoiled self-absorbed little prick in your youth?

    Read my post again before you get all righteous. I’m embarrassed by my youthful behavior and sorry I displayed it. When is calling oneself “smug and contemptuous” a sign of pride? I said we were self-absorbed little shits. Your irony detector needs some fresh batteries.

    Sorry for the late response, just got home from work.

  227. 227
    4jkb4ia says:

    I am glad that someone can stay classy. I am sprinkling all my gripes against the Hillary supporters on Kos and FDL.

  228. 228
    4jkb4ia says:

    There is a hockey game on *g*

  229. 229
    4jkb4ia says:

    Aravosis is praising Maureen Dowd!? I wondered who was doing that.

  230. 230
    libarbarian says:

    Read my post again before you get all righteous. I’m embarrassed by my youthful behavior and sorry I displayed it. When is calling oneself “smug and contemptuous” a sign of pride? I said we were self-absorbed little shits. Your irony detector needs some fresh batteries.

    1. My apologies I must have missed that part. For some reason I thought you were reveling in the old days.

    2. I’m not “all righteous”. I may have given you the impression that I was offended because of some slight offered to my father but that is not the case. Rather, I am mostly offended at the stupidity of spitting on the one armed service whose main mission has always been saving lives and not taking them.

  231. 231
    Soylent Green says:

    Thanks, libarbarian. I could have been clearer. The point I was trying to make was that trashing the returning servicemen was accomplished without spitting.

    One thing to add. In those days, we wouldn’t have known the Coast Guard from any other uniformed personnel. Baby killers all. That’s how asinine we were.

  232. 232
    Aaron says:

    Earlier Beej responded to my complaint that this whole ‘some vietnam war protestors hated the troops and may have spit on them is republican bullshit’ and beej responded:

    It did happen. War protestors did spit on returning soldiers and the pictures got played and replayed on the evening news. There was a popular song back then called “The Universal Soldier”. The chorus went: “He’s the universal soldier and he really is to blame. . . .” A segment of the anti-war movement took it quite literally and acted accordingly. The pictures were shameful and ugly and most Americans, anti-war or not, did not approve of this kind of behavior, but the small proportion that did got tons of publicity. The pics are probably still out there somewhere.

    Next Beej posts the lyrics for Universal Soldier as proof.

    Okay the song was first written in 1964-before the commitment of US soldiers as combat troops and I cant see how this song is not proof that members of the antiwar movement hated or spit on the troops at the time…

    And where are these ‘spitting’ pictures?

  233. 233
    liberal says:

    libarbarian wrote, Speaking as a statistician, to have meaningful “statistics” requires that we have something to measure/quantify first. Since most disrespect of the troops people in almost any uniform was done off the cuff and at times and locations where there wasn’t a census official on-hand to record it, exactly what are we supposed to use to compile these statistics that you expect to “back up” stories?

    Uh, you mean it’s not possible to actually interview a random sampling of Vietnam-era vets?

    We can compile some rudimentary statistics from death records and such things that were recorded, but since we know that the majority of punishments, beatings, rapes, other indignities that were committed on slaves were NEVER recorded, we also know that most statistics are going to paint a systematically biased picture that underestimates the brutality of the system.

    (yawn)

    Wrong. There are, I would wager, quite a few records for example that give a picture of slave sales, which would give a good picture of how often slave families were broken up.

    As for returning vets, for really nasty treatment, there are assault records. For “he sneered at me!” one could survey vets.

  234. 234
    liberal says:

    Z wrote, However, the hyperbolic, raw tribalism you displayed by acting like any criticism of SOME of you, is a criticism of ALL of you and EVERYTHING you stood for, is typical of many members of your generation (liberal and conservative), in my experience. And it is that very reactive tribalism that still has liberals and conservatives fighting over the 60’s, 40 f**king years later, instead of actually rolling up their sleeves and solving the VERY REAL problems we have TODAY.

    I was born in 1965. I rarely attend protests. So it’s not exactly my “tribe.”

    I’m simply pointing out the fact that Obama felt free to condemn relatively innocuous acts of antiwar protesters, yet AFAICT hasn’t uttered a word about Nixon, Kissinger, and the rest of the gang who are responsible for actual monstrous crimes. Nor have any other candidates.

    Again: why is it proper for candidates to condemn relatively innocuous acts of antiwar protesters, yet nary of word of condemnation for the butchers that sent GIs to their deaths?

    BTW, it’s hardly about tribalism from the 1960s. Look at the disapproval when MoveOn attacked Petraeus. In fact, they were roundly condemned by an official Congressional measure. When has an attack on someone opposed to the war led to such righteous anger?

    So: then, as now, attacks on antiwar elements is “OK”. Attacks on military and government officials responsible for heinous acts are “not OK”.

    See a pattern there? IMHO it’s not 20/21st century American red/blue conflict—probably the same crap was going on during the Peloponnesian war.

    If you’re too stupid to understand the obvious sociology of the suppression of dissent, you’re too dim for me to help.

  235. 235
    liberal says:

    Jon H wrote:

    liberal wrote: ”I have such a pathetic moral sense, I don’t understand that murdering millions of Vietnamese and sending thousands of GIs to their deaths is at least a wee bit more problematic than a few “mean” antiwar protestors.”

    The issues would appear to be orthogonal. You might have a point if Obama was saying that protesters had mistreated LBJ, Nixon, Macnamara, and the other policy makers.

    Are you really that stupid?

    The question is pretty simple: why emphasize the relatively minor transgressions of antiwar protesters, and maintain complete silence about real, butchering criminals?

    I suppose such a subtle distinction is completely beyond you.

    But hey, if you think the best way to lash out at those who murdered millions was through some hippie’s incoherent vituperation at a returned draftee, then you’re a just a moron.

    Please point to where I wrote that personal attacks on returning vets were either effective or morally correct actions.

    Rather—again, for someone as slow as you, I’ll have to repeat myself—the point is one of proportionality. On the one hand, some people sneered, or perhaps spit at someone. On the other hand, some people committed serious war crimes. Yet in our current political culture, it’s appropriate to discuss the former, but not the latter.

    If you can’t see what’s going on, you’re truly dense.

  236. 236
    libarbarian says:

    As for returning vets, for really nasty treatment, there are assault records. For “he sneered at me!” one could survey vets.

    They have. Many report incidents of being hassled. The people who say it was a myth respond by saying “interviews from vets mean nothing because their memories are false memories from 30 years of propaganda about hippies spitting on vets” and then demand “statistics” and “hard data”.

  237. 237

    […] The same applies to characterizing those whose opinions differ from yours as insane (John Cole: Out Of Her Mind). I am equally guilty of this practice, but there’s been a little bit of a change: I stopped doing it. The fact is that after a while, the smoke clears. These people for whom we stump don’t even know what it is we do for them, and he friendships we have fostered online are, quite frankly, not worth losing because of a difference in opinion as to which incompetent fools deserves to be in the White House next year. It’s such bittersweet irony to watch the supporters of a man who wants to run a non-mean campaign descend into meanness beyond measure. […]

  238. 238
    carl says:

    you stupid pinko fucks are so dim-witted. reading all of that stupid crap which people have been saying for forty years. all you dumb fucks do is point fingeres and do nothing. what a bunch of cowards. I hope one of you fuck with the wrong soldier someday

  239. 239
    Tom in Texas says:

    Jeez man try commenting on a post written in the last two weeks. Or do you enjoy talking to thin air?

  240. 240
    carl says:

    all you libs do is sit around and jerk eachother off. what a bunch of loosers!!!!

  241. 241
    carl says:

    you people are so stupid you eat your own. That is why you will loose in Nov. eat shit tom in texas.

  242. 242
    carl says:

    you people are so stupid you eat your own. That is why you will loose in Nov. eat shit tom in texas.

  243. 243
    Tom in Texas says:

    Carl:

    I’m not going to be as rude to you as you are begging someone to be. If you are looking for vitriol, I recommend the front page. Any of the last few posts usually have a few readers, and they aren’t nearly as nice as I am. For instance, I approved your poisonous drivel to be posted in the first place. I’m not checking this post again, so if you are looking for a conversation, look where the people are. If all you want is the last word, try to at least spell it right.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] The same applies to characterizing those whose opinions differ from yours as insane (John Cole: Out Of Her Mind). I am equally guilty of this practice, but there’s been a little bit of a change: I stopped doing it. The fact is that after a while, the smoke clears. These people for whom we stump don’t even know what it is we do for them, and he friendships we have fostered online are, quite frankly, not worth losing because of a difference in opinion as to which incompetent fools deserves to be in the White House next year. It’s such bittersweet irony to watch the supporters of a man who wants to run a non-mean campaign descend into meanness beyond measure. […]

  2. […] Out Of Her Mind Is it ok to say that a particular woman is being hysterical when she’s actually being hysterical no matter what her gender is? Because this is a hysterical person. […]

  3. […] At Talk Left we see Obama being accused of throwing the sixties generation under the bus, prompting John Cole to observe: […]

  4. […] IMHO, everyone needs to chill out a little bit, give up on the Obama-as-Messiah theme (Yo! Arthur! Has Obama ever suggested he was a Messiah? I can’t remember him doing so; feel free to correct me), and give up on the gender-based tribal politics of Taylor Marsh or Jeralyn Merritt, and try to find out a way to move this country forward, even if only incrementally. […]

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