Just Like Bush!

I don’t know why anyone ever wants to be President. At any rate, Sullivan is furious (FURIOUS!) no one is being fired in the wake of the failed bootiebomber attempt:

In the end, Obama is like Bush in this respect. In the struggle between citizenry and big government in ensuring basic competence, big government always wins, and always, always protects its own. Just as Obama has protected government officials who committed war crimes, he is protecting those who failed in basic responsibilities. This guarantees that reforms won’t work.

Change we can believe in? Nah. Just big government covering its own ass yet again. I guess we can merely be relieved that all the people who failed us were not given Medals of Freedom.

I’ll play. Who does Sullivan think should be fired? For what reason? He even seems to understand that systemic failures mean the SYSTEM failed. Had the review shown that individuals were the problem, they would not be changing the system, they would be firing the individuals. But they discovered it was a systemic failure, and, as such, they are engaging in a systemic overhaul.

And if he trots out that weak Napolitano shit because of an interview AFTER the damned attempt, I’m going to laugh. Look- the wingnuts spent the previous year claiming Obama was ruthless because of all the people he has thrown under the bus. Now, because he won’t fire someone for no reason, Sullivan is calling him just like Bush.

Again, I have no idea why anyone in their right mind wants to be President. All you do is work your ass off for insane hours every day and have to deal with poo flinging monkeys the entire time.

As an aside, as far as over-the-top hysterical posts go, this from Sullivan is almost good enough to be a template for all aspiring PUMA’s:

Just like Bush- check
sarcastic “change” reference- check
claiming to speak for the citizenry (hint- you are speaking for yourself)- check

If he could have thrown in something about “hope” and maybe invoked Hillary, it would have been a perfect work of performance art.

*** Update ***

Why stop with a symbolic firing? I demand virgin sacrifices! Unless and until 5 virgins are thrown from the Washington monument, Obama is just like Bush. Bring me the head of Brennan’s first born!






103 replies
  1. 1
    freelancer says:

    And heif trots out that

    dyslexic qwerty, u haz one.

    /pedant

  2. 2
    Ann B. Nonymous says:

    Sullivan isn’t interested in reason. You called him a “heater” yourself — but there’s no enlightenment in his fire.

  3. 3

    He does it because he hates America and Americans. Pretty obvious, innit?

  4. 4
    The Main Gauche of Mild Reason says:

    Is “poo clinging monkeys” supposed to be a combination of “poo flinging monkeys” and “pearl clutchers”?

  5. 5

    I LOVE your typo “heif” for if he, in your third para. Please leave it. It seriously made me snort. Because I ask you John Cole, what is Andrew Sulliven but a big ole “heif”?

  6. 6
    valdivia says:

    but but firing people will make Sullivan feel safe, even if it does *nothing* to fix what went wrong. And Napolitano should go, because clearly she pissed Sulli off or said something wrong or something.

  7. 7

    It’s because we’ve bought into the idea that someone HAS to be responsible. it’s easier to blame one person than to accept that a systematic failure means that a Band-aid won’t solve the problem. In addition, we (the collective we) are addicted to grand gestures rather than actual solutions. Look, something was actually done in response to a situation! In that way, Sully is acting like he WANTS W. back because he (Sully) is demanding an action, any action over doing something that actually is effective and a meaningful solution.

    @freelancer: I liked that because I thought at first that Cole was calling Sully a heifer, which is funny to me.

  8. 8
    gopher2b says:

    Personally, I’m not going to vote for Obama again. At the very least he could fire the Amsterdam screeners. Shit, he was just in Copenhagen two weeks ago. He could have easily stopped in to deliver the news face to face like a man.

  9. 9
    Mike Kay says:

    There are lot of Edward “PUMA”s as well.

    Almost ALL of the BIG whinners at GOS were one time Edwards hagiographers. Only they’re structurally inhibited from saying “if only the cancer fucking ‘populist’ had won”.

  10. 10

    LOL and leave the poo clinging monkeys too, because those damned heif’s cling to their poo.

  11. 11
    freelancer says:

    nevermind that AN HOUR AGO, he posted THIS:

    http://andrewsullivan.theatlan.....ay-iv.html

    and yesterday, we noted that he posted a “know hope” themed missive calling Obama “The UnBush“.

    He must be dizzy today.

  12. 12
    Sad_Dem says:

    I think she should be fired for not deregulating the airline security apparatus. Everything works better when it’s deregulated.

  13. 13
    willf says:

    Sullivan’s record make Joke Line’s look sober and serious by comparison. What reason exists to read him or link to him at all?

  14. 14
    demkat620 says:

    You know who should be fired?

    Sullivan for crimes against the body politic and incompetent logic.

    He never says who, just somebody. Anybody. He doesn’t care, just somebody needs to be fired to appease Sully.

  15. 15
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    Just heard the reason the undie boomer was given a Visa to enter the US was a clerical error in spelling his name. Apparently a single misplaced letter caused him to slip past the watchers. Defazio says that department is operating with 18 century technology, though that seems like a slight exaggeration. I guess we could fire non existent technology, or maybe just fix it. Coulda been a secretary’s fault, maybe a GS 5 with two kids and no hubby, or something. That oughta show we are serious.

    Or just fire congress for not appropriating the money to upgrade. I like this one.

  16. 16
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    I demand virgin sacrifices! U

    Now let’s not get carried away here. Besides, I doubt we’d find enough virgins in this country to get the job done.

  17. 17
    mistersnrub says:

    Off with their heads! Burn the heretics! Rabble, Rabble, Rabble!

  18. 18
    beltane says:

    @Mike Kay: I always get a kick out of Edwards’ supporters calling the president “naive”. The irony is delicious.

  19. 19

    @General Winfield Stuck: If you include men, I bet we could find five. Just check Craigslist.

    Cole! You changed the typo, damn you. And, PUMAs or PUMA (s implied).

    /pedantic pedant.

    @WereBear: Best. Answer. Evah!

  20. 20
    WereBear says:

    Sullivan apparently thinks it’s entirely proper and expected to have someone fired when something is screwed up.

    And himself a Catholic.

  21. 21
    Gwangung says:

    Defazio says that department is operating with 18 century technology,

    as always, no matter how powerful the technology, it’s going to be operated by humans (1st Century vintage).

  22. 22
    DCPlod says:

    What exactly is Sully expecting Obama to do? He’s forgetting that this is not a solely American failure – Dutch and Nigerian security both failed to detect the explosives on his body. Should he call up Amsterdam and Abjua and demand that their airport security staff be fired too?

    It may of course have something to with Sully’s British roots. Here in the UK, you have people baying (successfully a lot of the time) for the Transport Secretary’s blood every time there’s a train crash.

  23. 23

    Sullivan is a hysterical shrew, an idiot. Why do people pay attention to him at all?

    God damn(tm) The Atlantic.

  24. 24
    stevie314159 says:

    Maybe Sully thinks Obama should have said:

    “The buck stops with me. But John Smith, GS-7, in Room 203A, really screwed the pooch on this one, and I’ve fired him.”

  25. 25
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    Obama is just like Bush in the sense that James Brown is just like Pat Boone. I mean they both charted, right?

  26. 26
    Violet says:

    Couldn’t agree more. Thanks for an excellent post.

    The system needs to be fixed. If there are people in the system who are dragging their feet and refusing to participate in fixing it, then fine, get rid of them. But if the overall system is the problem, why fire the people trying to make it work? Use their knowledge and input to improve it.

    Sully is just angry because he knows he was wrong the first time with the whole “Fire Napolitano” crap and he’s doubled down and wants someone’s head to roll so he can be proved right. It’s about him, not what the best result is for all of us.

  27. 27
    Amy says:

    Given how the Bushies tried to block any look back — remember the 9/11 Commission was something they did not want — Obama is clearly taking a very different tack.

    What this reminds me of is JFK taking responsibility for the Bay of Pigs (which was far more his responsibility than this was Obama’s; after all, the operation happened on JFK’s orders). The thing is, after JFK did that, his approval numbers soared. Even those who voted against him recognized that he had acted like an adult. I doubt if Americans today on the other side can bring themselves to acknowledge that.

  28. 28
    MobiusKlein says:

    Remember the Challenger explosion. CFs occur on many levels, and the blame in an organization does smear out. And yes, sometimes there is a single guilty party, sometimes a culture of ‘eh’. Sometimes it’s an oversight failure.
    Figure out which, do right thing.

    A.S. is just shooting from the hip, which nobody here ever does.

  29. 29
    Jay in Oregon says:

    @demkat620:

    You know who should be fired?

    Hitler!

    …did I get the punchline wrong?

  30. 30
    Lev says:

    @DonBelacquaDelPurgatorio: Nah, he has his good moments too. And he’s generally supportive of Obama. It’s just that his bad moments are really, really bad, and usually spring from the same sources as his good moments: his monomania and obsessiveness, basically. He doesn’t really think on the fly, just afterward.

  31. 31
    Mike Kay says:

    @beltane:

    I’ve always thought a big part of the hatred at GOS was sour grapes by the “populist”. They really freaked out that they didn’t get their way.

  32. 32
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    On the whole Napolitano thing, I’m wondering if Sully just has a personal problem (i.e. psychological issues) with women in positions of authority. First Hillary, then Palin, and now Napolitano – how many times does he have to go off the deep end re: a female authority figure before there are enough dots to play connect-the-dots with?

  33. 33
    DCPlod says:

    @DonBelacquaDelPurgatorio:

    Sullivan is a hysterical shrew, an idiot. Why do people pay attention to him at all?

    His blog is literally, and I mean literally, the only place you can get decent coverage of Iran (though yes, he does go OTT on that too) and his posts on torture/Cheney are superb – he is trying his damnedest to make sure we do not forget what horrors were perpetrated in our name.

    But Sully’s constant knee-jerking on most other topics IS extremely irritating, to say the least.

  34. 34
    El Cid says:

    I kinda think this is about Sully needing to think he, Sully, has the power to get someone fired. That he doesn’t enrages him.

  35. 35
    Brachiator says:

    I’ll play. Who does Sullivan think should be fired? For what reason?

    I’ll play. Maybe the CIA chief, Leon Panetta. And probably some folks at State. It’s not just the December bomb attempt that failed. It’s also about the successful attack on the CIA agents in Afghanistan. Who in hell thought that things were so cozy that you could have a bunch of agents conveniently located in one place?

    I don’t see how you fix a systemic failure without putting people in place who understand how to run an intelligence shop.

    I’m not even that pleased with John Brennan, counter terrorism man, after hearing him respond to a question about a failed attempt to kill a Saudi leader by a bomber using material similar to that carried by the Undie Bomber. Brennan admits that his folk didn’t think that a group using that type of material to kill someone up close and personal would also think about using it to try to blow up an airplane.

    Napolitano and DHS weren’t even in the loop on this, and had information or ability to do anything about the bomber.

    That said, I am glad that Obama is avoiding the political grandstanding of rolling heads just to roll heads.

  36. 36
    jacy says:

    You have to remember that Sully is an openly gay man who is both a devout Catholic and a “Conservative.” Why, he absolutely thrives on the type of cognitive dissonance that would crush lesser men flatter than a pancake.

    Sometimes I just want to drag him aside and sit him at a table and explain reality to him using colorful pictures and very small words.

  37. 37
    Mike E says:

    @asiangrrlMN:
    Damn, McFly–how do you cite people in future (#20) comments? I want ur flux inhibitur!!

  38. 38
    freelancer says:

    I just sent him a kick in the pants email, here’s hoping it makes dissent of the day:

    Do you want heads on plates simply for their trophy value here? Obama is pretty viscerally pissed off about this failure, because any idiot can see the optics (I fucking hate the word “optics” in this context) of another attempt (perhaps a successful one) and how that will reflect on his presidency now that he’s explicitly said that he’s holding himself accountable? You don’t think the batshit right is going to use that to start ranting about impeachment next time some mall (or factory workplace) has a shooting? I’m usually able to follow your rationale, and your emotional intelligence is at most times, relatable. But seriously, Sully, how many pounds of flesh do you need? Is this perhaps another instinctive knee-jerk Britishism in the same vein as your (slowly) walking back calling for Napolitano to fall on her sword a week and a half ago?

    In the words of the inimitable Bill Hicks: “Shut up, and smoke that!”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qZqYV9KKOZQ
    “[inhales] … Oh, Sorry, I was taking life seriously!”

    Cheers,
    Nick

  39. 39
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    Sully is just angry because he knows he was wrong the first time with the whole “Fire Napolitano” crap and he’s doubled down and wants someone’s head to roll so he can be proved right.

    Just add Napolitano to Sully’s female enemies list. The person he really wants to fire, of course, is Palin but she went and resigned on him.

  40. 40
    Roger Moore says:

    I said it on the other thread, but I’ll repeat it here. Sullivan wants a ritual sacrifice to the Gods of Accountability. What he’s forgetting is that accountability is as much about acquitting the innocent as punishing the guilty. Firing somebody who didn’t do anything wrong just to make it look like you’re holding people accountable is actually a sacrifice to the Gods of PR, but Sullivan is too blind to see it.

  41. 41
    Comrade Jake says:

    When did Obama have Palin’s baby?

  42. 42
    Lev says:

    I don’t know if Sullivan has ever had a “real” job, but I have. And I can tell you that there are bosses who fire people whenever some bad shit goes down, regardless of whether they were responsible.

    The technical term for this is called, “asshole”.

  43. 43
    joes527 says:

    @gopher2b: That would be brilliant. Incent individual screeners to check everyone’s underwear for fear of losing their jobs.

    Hilarity would ensue.

  44. 44
    Ash says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

    I’m wondering if Sully just has a personal problem (i.e. psychological issues) with women in positions of authority.

    No need to wonder. There’s plenty of evidence to show that, at the very least, he’s uncomfortable with women being in charge of anything.

    It explains a lot.

  45. 45
    silentbeep says:

    Oh gosh how I disliked that piece by Sulllivan i defend him occasionally here but that post was just pure silliness and calls for theatrical hysteria. Oh please. Obama took responsibility, something Bush never did during his presidency, for anything. What ever happened to the stiff-upper lip approcah from his homeland? You do what you have to do and carry on and not let the enemy dictate the boundaries of engagement. Confident non-hysterical people in charge don’t act like the way Sullivan is advocating which sounds like some Queen from Alice in Wonerland approach “off with her or his head!” I can’t take him seriously when he acts like this. Blech.

  46. 46
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    The other thing idiotic about Sully’s “heads must roll” jihad is that if you are trying to construct an organization able to respond and adapt to a changing set of circumstances (i.e. the never ending, constantly mutating task of guarding against terror attacks), the last thing you want is a pervasive organizational culture such that lower level people are constantly afraid of being selected as scapegoats for failure. That is as good a way as I know to make an organization brittle with respect to change.

    Firing folks at the first sign of a problem is another way of saying you don’t expect anybody to learn from their mistakes. You can do that in a situation where we are working with a stable, well-defined problem that never changes. But if learning is the key to success, not so much.

  47. 47
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    It’s not just the December bomb attempt that failed. It’s also about the successful attack on the CIA agents in Afghanistan.

    From what I can gather about what happened there, it seems the people who screwed up have already paid a high price for this failure. 7 with their lives, and others with grievous wounds. It was an on site violation of basic tradecraft by some highly experienced agents, as far as I can tell.

  48. 48
    Lev says:

    @Ash: To be fair, he has gushed enthusiastically about Margaret Thatcher many times.

    For whatever it’s worth.

  49. 49
    Ash says:

    @Brachiator:

    It’s not just the December bomb attempt that failed. It’s also about the successful attack on the CIA agents in Afghanistan.

    Really though, that guy was a TRIPLE agent. I feel like someone should make a movie about it.

  50. 50
    gopher2b says:

    @Brachiator:

    It’s also about the successful attack on the CIA agents in Afghanistan.

    This was far more egregious and someone should be fired over it (assuming he or she wasn’t killed)

  51. 51
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    Yeah, I don’t get this fire-somebody-for-the-sake-of-firing-somebody meme. As if it’s more important to look like you’re doing something than to actually do something.

  52. 52

    @Mike E: See, I’m ahead of y’all in time by about thirteen hours so I just turn back the clock…actually, I just use the edit function and add the additional blathering after I post my original comment. Neat, huh?

    @General Winfield Stuck: Taiwan. Will be going back to MN in about eight hours. A sixty-eighty degree weather swing. YAY!

    Mike E, see? Like that.

  53. 53
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    @asiangrrlMN:

    Where you at again?

  54. 54
    Lev says:

    @whoever: I’ve found another way…

  55. 55
    CalD says:

    “I’ll play. Who does Sullivan think should be fired? For what reason? He even seems to understand that systemic failures mean the SYSTEM failed.”

    Then it’s obvious. The SYSTEM must die.

    Death! Death to the SYSTEM!

  56. 56
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    @CalD: LOL

  57. 57
    Mike E says:

    @Lev:
    Thatcher is a MAN, baby! Yeah!

  58. 58
    Ann B. Nonymous says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

    I’m wondering if Sully just has a personal problem (i.e. psychological issues) with women in positions of authority.

    Oh hell yes.

    He strikes me as the type of gay man who likes to make woman-hating jokes about queefs. There’s his mum, and Maggie Thatcher — who would have hated him — and that’s it for acceptable superior women in Andrew’s world.

  59. 59
    Violet says:

    @Ann B. Nonymous:
    Yeah. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him say much positive about a specific woman, other than Thatcher and his mum, or women in general. Perhaps the occasional post, but no clear pattern for sure. I’m not sure he “hates” women, but there’s definitely some kind of issue there. Fear?

  60. 60
    Mike E says:

    @asiangrrlMN:
    (Awe-struck, mouth agape) Ur whip is WHOA!

  61. 61
    mai naem says:

    First, it’s 72 virgins not 5 virgins. Second, Sully’s attacked Napolitano before. Napolitano’s probably dissed him at some stupid cocktail party or something. Also too, don’t forget Napolitano worked in the Clinton admin. and we all know how much Sully disliked all things Clinton.

  62. 62
    Brachiator says:

    @General Winfield Stuck:

    From what I can gather about what happened there, it seems the people who screwed up have already paid a high price for this failure. 7 with their lives, and others with grievous wounds. It was an on site violation of basic tradecraft by some highly experienced agents, as far as I can tell.

    The price is indeed steep. I read somewhere that one of the agents killed was a station chief. There is also of course the propaganda victory for successfully killing supposedly expert intelligence officers, and people who may have been involved in selecting targets for predator drones as well as directing other operations. I doubt that it will be easy to quickly replace the expertise that was lost.

    Around that same time, there was another successful attack:

    In a separate attack, four Canadian soldiers and a journalist died when their armoured vehicle was blown up in the southern province of Kandahar.

    The Canadian team was also working on community reconstruction projects.

    In one swoop intelligence agents were killed, and people working to supposedly help civilians were killed, even as the US had recently announced a coming increase in American and allied sources in the region.

    The people behind this surged first, sending a signal that they are not concerned about increased American forces. And they are signalling other Afghans that the US ain’t gonna be able to help them.

    This is a mess by any standard of measure. It also suggests that there are military and foreign policy people in the government who are still under estimating their opponents, not a good sign whether one thinks we should pull out entirely or support the president’s plans.

  63. 63
    schrodinger's cat says:

    OT: Making home-made pizza right now, with red potatoes and red onions, baby bella mushrooms fresh mozzarella cheese and yesterday’s left over butter chicken served with a salad of baby greens, grape tomatoes and lime vinaigrette.

    BRB after dinner..

  64. 64
    El Cid says:

    @mai naem: Second, it may very well be “72 white raisins,” not ‘virgins’.

  65. 65
    Annie says:

    I think Obama should immediately hold a press conference and fire all the “poo flinging monkeys.”

  66. 66

    @schrodinger’s cat: WANT! Pics!

    @Mike E: Yeah, my whip is DEFINITELY whoa. Hm. I don’t think we’re talking about the same thing.

  67. 67
    recusancy says:

    I think Sullivan knows he came out looking for scalps a little to early but he isn’t accountable enough to admit it and let it go. So he keeps making week arguments and digging deeper.

  68. 68

    Read Sullivan’s very next post. I’m getting fucking whiplash here.

  69. 69
    Mike E says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:
    I wanna know where the pizza ends and the salad begins…
    Sounds yummy, though.

  70. 70
    Karen says:

    A person would do good finding 5 virgins, much less 72, without raiding the grade schools, which are off limits.

    No people from the monument party today.

    I stopped reading Sullivan last year. He gets too hysterical for me.

  71. 71
    RSA says:

    I am morally certain that someone, somewhere in the U.S. government, was fired today. I don’t know exactly for what, but that doesn’t matter, does it? We can say that person was fired for the underwear bomber incident, and that should satisfy Sully, because he wants a firing, even if there’s not good specific reason for any particular firing.

  72. 72
    schrodinger's cat says:

    @Mike E: Sorry, sloppy punctuation. Pizza ends at the chicken. Waiting for husband cat to get home, I has a hungry. Will have to start eating if he doesn’t get here in 5, 4, 3…..

  73. 73
    aimai says:

    Its all part of the binary thinking that people like Sullivan use: if, when Bush didn’t fire Brownie that was ” no accountability:” then when Obama doesn’t fire anyone its also “no accountability.” Actually, the problem with Brownie wasn’t that he wasn’t fired, its that he was hired in the firstplace. Firing him after he turned out to be no good would only have meant anything if Bush could have/would have replaced him with someone who knew his fucking job. Similarly, firing “someone” for a screw up that belongs to multiple people and organizations is the opposite of thoughtful managerial style, its purely reactive and showboaty. But that won’t stop Sullivan from demanding that it be done because its all about simply doing the opposite of Bush–or rather the last thing that Bush did that ticked Sullivan off. Bush was white? Obama should be black! So far this opposite thing has worked out.

    aimai

  74. 74
    schrodinger's cat says:

    Drama queen says off with their heads.

  75. 75
    schrodinger's cat says:

    @asiangrrlMN: Battery needs to be charged, so no pics, may be next time. Have a safe trip home.

  76. 76
    Ella in NM says:

    I just think that Sully simply can’t comprehend how frigging BIG the whole system is, and that because of that there are almost infinite opportunities for error. Why he is not ragging on Bush& Co as the culprits here, I just don’t know: the current administration inherited a system set up by him, underfunded by him, and destined to fail us eventually. It’s the only way his administration ever did anything–half-assed.

    Quite frankly, I see this near miss as a huge blessing and opportunity. It was the real time equivalent of a fire drill. We now know so much more about our weaknesses and strengths than we would have by a “systematic review” of our Homeland Security policies. We have good people throughout, chomping at the bit to make things better. Now, hopefully, they have a chance.

    With Obama in charge, as well as the well qualified heads of these national security agencies, we WILL get change, and it will save our asses. I’m absolutely confident of that.

  77. 77
    Malron says:

    A vlittle more info about that system is in order. I can’t quote the entire post from Steven D. at Booman Tribune, appropriately titled “Republicans Ruined Intelligence Community”, but its a must read:

    The enormity of information being collected by American spy agencies is staggering — and there simply aren’t enough human analysts to go around. […][O]nly a very small slice of the information stored at the center in southern Salt Lake County will ever be scanned by human eyes. And that’s the reality for most of what is collected by the nation’s other spy agencies as well. In a report commissioned by the Department of Defense last year, the Jason defense advisory group warned that the millions of terabytes of data coming into U.S. spy agencies through ever-improving sensors are being wasted. “As the amount of data captured by these sensors grows, the difficulty in storing, analyzing, and fusing the sensor data becomes increasingly significant,” the report concluded. It cited Massachusetts Institute of technology defense expert Pete Rustan, who complained that “70 percent of the data we collect is falling on the floor.” […] That’s a problem that Utah Guard commander Brian Tarbet is all too familiar with. […] “We simply vacuum up more information today,” Tarbet said. “That’s more information from which you have to separate the wheat from the chaff. But how much of that is good intelligence? That’s the trick.” When your own experts are telling you that 70% of everything you collect is never going to be processed, read, understood, or examined, doesn’t that suggest to you that our vast intelligence community is engaged in the greatest exercise in the theater of the absurd humankind has ever attempted?

  78. 78
    gwangung says:

    I just think that Sully simply can’t comprehend how frigging BIG the whole system is, and that because of that there are almost infinite opportunities for error.

    99% of the country can’t comprehend how big the system (and problem) is.

    There are an awful lot of idiots on this.

  79. 79
    kay says:

    I think Sullivan was just really rattled by it.

    I sometimes like him, and I’ll continue to read him, but this is now the second time he’s completely lost his head after a terrorist attack, and started advocating hitting back blindly at the first person (or country) that crosses his field of vision.

    Two strikes, indeed, Andrew. Get a grip.

  80. 80

    Andrew Sullivan: A sound and fury signifying nothing.

  81. 81
    Blue Raven says:

    Sully really needs to quit being such a damn stereotype. The fainting couch, the shrill hysteria, the woman-hating. If he lisped and minced when he walked, it would merely be painting the lily. His politics are not a counterbalance, they are an excuse. He needs to stop being a 1940s movie character and start being an adult.

    Why, no, Sully doesn’t get under my skin. Why do you ask?

  82. 82

    @Lev:

    Nah, he has his good moments too.

    Well, you know who else “had good moments?”

    Heh.

  83. 83
    mousebumples says:

    Watching Rachel Maddow right now, and she said that due to a misspelling in the undie-bomber’s name, the program/system cross-checking the incoming international passengers against the terrorist watch lists didn’t catch that he was a potential terrorist.

    Per her reporting, if his name had been spelled right, he wouldn’t have been allowed to board the plane.

    I presume, now, that Sullivan would like to have Webster’s Dictionary (or at least the alphabet) held responsible for this massive failure?

  84. 84
    Leelee for Obama says:

    @DonBelacquaDelPurgatorio: Well played! And true, too. Also.

  85. 85
    burnspbesq says:

    @General Winfield Stuck:

    Between the Catholic University of America and that crazy college for home-schooled wingnut kids whose name I am forgetting, you might be able to find five virgins. But it’s likely to require a long and dilligent search. Care to volunteer?

  86. 86
    ruemara says:

    @General Winfield Stuck:

    I work in government. Our systems have been upgraded around 2002. I am in broadcast. We still use SVHS tape playback and analog connectors for timing. Our top of the line video camera was top of the line 12 years ago and our second top of the line is a small prosumer job that was fine-for a mom-8 years ago. Our booking system for athletic events and classes is still dos based and our school district tv controls are also 80’s terminal program based.

    Believe them when they say they are behind. You should all be terrified at how out of date your federal, state and city tech is at a time when we’re trying to get actual jobs & businesses to grow in America.

  87. 87
    JAHILL10 says:

    I stopped reading Sullivan around the time he had his revelation that “Gee whiz, people who sought late term abortions might actually have real, gut-wrenching, heart-breaking reasons for doing so.” Just the fact that he could attain the age and status he has and not realize this until hundreds of such stories were left at his doorstep told me this man is not serious and he’s not empathetic and he’s not to be read on a regular basis.

  88. 88
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Why yes, for service to the Empire, I could find time for such a noble cause. I had some experience with this in my youth.

  89. 89
    General Winfield Stuck says:

    @ruemara: Yup. used to work for the feds years ago, doesn’t surprise me a bit they are that far behind.

  90. 90
    fraught says:

    Risking homophobia here, but here’s Lewis Carroll :

    “I pictured to myself the Queen of Hearts as a sort of embodiment of ungovernable passion – a blind and aimless Fury. The Red Queen I pictured as a Fury, but of another type; her passion must be cold and calm – she must be formal and strict, yet not unkindly; pedantic to the 10th degree, the concentrated essence of all governesses!”

    Remind you of anyone’s schizoid postings lately?

    Submitting: The guy with the charcoal testicles seems to be the one who got fired.

  91. 91
    ds says:

    Dude, this is the same guy who thought that the appropriate response to the crackdown in Iran was for bloggers around the world to change their font color.

    He has insane over-expectations about the power of symbolism.

  92. 92
    ds says:

    I stopped reading Sullivan around the time he had his revelation that “Gee whiz, people who sought late term abortions might actually have real, gut-wrenching, heart-breaking reasons for doing so.” Just the fact that he could attain the age and status he has and not realize this until hundreds of such stories were left at his doorstep told me this man is not serious and he’s not empathetic and he’s not to be read on a regular basis.

    It just proves that unlike 99% of smart conservative commentators, he’s not some cynical, mean-spirited manipulator who’s just spouting the talking points to the rubes in order to get his wingnut welfare.

    He actually believes their bullshit. He truly does. This despite being neither stupid nor indifferent to politics.

    That’s what makes him fascinating. Every few months he has this deep revelation where he discovers another level of the bankruptcy of modern conservatism, and is dumbfounded by it.

    What?! You mean that the libruls aren’t taking 9 month pregnant teens down to the abortion clinic so they can fit in their prom dress? How about that!

    I’m pretty sure in a year or so he’s going to have a freakout when he finally finds out that there weren’t really welfare queens driving Cadillacs to pick up their nightly food stamp t-bones.

  93. 93
    silentbeep says:

    @JAHILL10:

    Oh I was floored that he had to have readers tell him about the horrible state of American healthcare in his “view from your sickbed” series of posts, in order for him to support any type of hcr.

  94. 94
    russell says:

    I don’t understand what Sullivan brings, or ever brought, to the table that justifies the gig he has. My two cents.

    I also don’t understand why a sophisticated intelligence apparatus is necessary to keep guys like Abdulmutallab off of planes.

    Young guy traveling alone walks in and pays $3,000 in cash for a ticket from Nigeria to Detroit. Gives no address or phone number. At checkin he brings one shoulder bag, no checked luggage.

    Nobody thinks maybe they need to take this guy aside and have a chat?

  95. 95
    Apsaras says:

    Someone was murdered in New York City last night.

    I eagerly await the impending sacking of the police chief and all officers from that area.

  96. 96
    sheiler says:

    Well Sullivan seems to have some power with his blog, and when he insists that someone get fired, and for other people to pst such things in their blogs, it works. Or it worked. Two vague memories: insisting that Lyndie England get fired/jailed for her role in Abu-Ghraib instead of going after someone responsible for the policy (Rumsfeld? Cheney? Bush? England’s commanding officer?). And also calling for the head of FEMA after Katrina. Who had been reporting to Bush while Bush was on vacation. FEMA had previously worked under Clinton. Bush gets into office and, after Katrina, people are talking about a failed system rather than the incompetence of one or two people.

    Sullivan is going for the quick fix by insisting that someone get fired for the underpants bomber, because this system never worked under Bush. And Obama’s still kind of new to all of the problems left to him.

    Sullivan’s latest tirade seems to me to be counter-intuitive for a self-described, slow to act/react conservative.

  97. 97
    gelfling545 says:

    Mr. Sullivan speculated earlier on whether this need to see someone fired was a result of his British upbringing and maybe it is. There’s a firm literary tradition of this (see Alice in Wonderland -“Off with his head!”) Since we, however, have a president rather than a Queen of Hearts, this doesn’t seem to be an option here.
    I may say I have more confidence in an executive who doesn’t fire people in a reflexive response to problems or just to make himself look good to the media.
    I read Mr. Sullivan fairly often and he seems better balanced in general on all things Obama that the many of the more liberal sources but he does appear to have an overdeveloped overreact button.To his credit, he often reconsiders his initial reactions.

  98. 98
    tom.a says:

    The only failure was the folks at Schipol airport security to flag the guy’s name from the TIDE list. Everything else went according to how it’s supposed to go.

  99. 99
    lol says:

    @russell:

    Except paying in cash is par for the course in that part of the world, for obvious reasons.

  100. 100
    russell says:

    Except paying in cash is par for the course in that part of the world, for obvious reasons.

    Yeah, I get that. Except I think cash ticket purchases are supposed to be some number of days before the flight, and are supposed to be reported back somewhere.

    I think Abdulmutallab bought his ticket back in August or September. It appears that somebody dropped the ball on the “reporting back” side.

    That’s from the information I’ve been able to dig up, anyway.

  101. 101
    michael says:

    Bush gave all the idiots medals of freedom, i can’t understand why, for some, the last 8 years don’t factor into current critiques…

  102. 102
    JohnR says:

    “Unless and until 5 virgins are thrown from the Washington monument,..”

    Alright, Cole – now you’ve gone too far! Virgins are far too precious to be casually wasted in this manner (even virgins of the rather unpleasant Erick Erickson ilk – there’s always hope that they may dicover sex and therefore become closer to God.)
    I demand you retract, repudiate and rewrite that offensive comment so that it refers to Senators or Op/Ed Writers or Talk-show Yammerers, or some other group which is equally repulsive in the eyes of the Lord. Like blog commentators.

  103. 103
    elisathon says:

    @ds:

    Dude, this is the same guy who thought that the appropriate response to the crackdown in Iran was for bloggers around the world to change their font color.He has insane over-expectations about the power of symbolism.

    Do not forget he’s Catholic. Ever.
    Seriously, symbolism, the form of things, rituals, is embedded at the cellular level.
    Not meant as bashing – I say that as one born into it & who attended convent school ’til high school, though it didn’t ‘take’ with me.

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