Rahm Is Not the Source

Glenn, in a piece I otherwise agree with, updates with this:

One related point about the spate of “Obama-should-have-followed-Rahm’s-centrist-advice” articles that have appeared of late: if you really think about it, it’s quite extraordinary to watch a Chief of Staff openly undermine the President by spawning numerous stories claiming that the President is failing because he’s been repeatedly rejecting his Chief of Staff’s advice. It seems to me there’s one of two possible explanations for this episode: (1) Rahm wants to protect his reputation at Obama’s expense by making clear he’s been opposed all along to Obama’s decisions, a treacherous act that ought to infuriate Obama to the point of firing him; or (2) these stories are being disseminated with Obama’s consent as a means of apologizing to official Washington for not having been centrist enough and vowing to be even more centrist in the future by listening more to Rahm (we know that what we did wrong was not listen enough to Rahm). One can only speculate about which it is, but if I had to bet, my money would be on (2) (because of things like this and because these “Rahm-Was-Right” stories went on for weeks and Rahm is still very much around).

I think you’d have to be nuts to think Rahm is behind the recent “Rahm was right” stories. It may be “friends” of Rahm who think they are doing Rahm a favor, or it may be folks in Washington playing their own political games, but no Chief of Staff in their right mind would be behind stories like this. Rahm may be a lot of things, but he is not a blithering idiot, and I’d bet anything he hates these stories as much as Obama.

The second point, that Obama is not only ok with these stories but furthermore is “apologizing” to Washington is as crazy and conspiratorial as I’ve ever seen. It makes, quite honestly, no sense. Obama is ok with spreading stories that appear to have his Chief of Staff undercutting him?

Glenn consistently mocks the 11-dimensional chess when Obama’s defenders use it deflect blame when the Obama team has made mistakes. It’s absurd to then suggest that the Obama team is now deploying 11 dimensional chess with the media in order to apologize to centrist Washington. It particularly makes no sense when you consider Obama has become far more aggressive in the past few weeks (up or down vote, the line drawn at the HCR summit).

More than likely, I’d bet these stories are coming from Rahm’s buddies who think they are doing him a favor.

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441 replies
  1. 1
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    Glenn, in a piece I otherwise agree with, updates with this:

    The person who wrote this update, cannot be believed on anything else. Just my opinion. Carry on.

  2. 2
    Cat Lady says:

    Man the battle stations; here comes another 1000 comment thread in 3…2….

  3. 3
    Something Fabulous says:

    @Cat Lady: Seriously. All this sense of knowing who-thought-what first, and some idea that any of us knows what *really* is animating any of these people to act, is so tiresome. Glenn included. None of us are INVESTIGATIVE REPORTERS, we’re all speculators. Which is fine; it’s great we nowadays have venues in which to speculate with one another, but I wish we could all remember that’s all we’re doing: speculating.

  4. 4
    Uloborus says:

    This… is why I stopped reading Glenn, and it *pains* me to do so, because the man is sharp as a whip and great about his facts.

    The problem is, the reasoning he applies to them invariably involves a straw man. Specifically, ‘This is what they must be planning….’ This is a perfect example. Cole has added a 3). I’ll add a 4). These rumors were made up by people who just don’t like Rahm or Obama, and are spiteful enough to float something that makes it sound like there’s infighting in the administration that doesn’t exist. And a 5) These rumors didn’t exist at all, and lazy reporters are making them up.

    I’ve pretty much started tuning out every unsourced leak about planning/squabbles/rumors in the white house. They’ve been coming out all last year and they consistently mean nothing whatsoever.

    Oh, and here’s a 6) Obama does like him a broad tent, so maybe there’s some people in his administration who like to gossip, and reporters blow largely innocent commentary wildly out of proportion.

    ALL of these possibilities are quite valid. Zeroing in on the two that make the administration look bad is unfortunately typical of Glenn’s persistent determination to find the worst side of anything.

  5. 5
    joe from Lowell says:

    Glenn Greenwald has a powerful mind, but he shuts it off when it threatens to tell him something he doesn’t want to hear.

    Really, Glenn? Those are the only two possible options – that the White House C.o.S. is behind a series of pieces attacking the president, or that the President himself is behind them? The possibility that the White House has nothing to do with a series of pieces attacking the White House just slipped your mind?

    Weak.

  6. 6
    srv says:

    Having left HCR on Congressional autopilot, WH eventually realizes they’re not going to deliver even an aborted pig with lipstick on it.

    I think once you’re in that situation, someone is going to have to try 11th-D solutions/blame. Otherwise, they’re just another C-SPAN audience.

    As always, centrists are the real experts in Hippy Punching.

  7. 7
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Something Fabulous: Well, there are different orders of speculation. One based on rational conclusions from related facts, and then there is the conspiratorial batshit crazy kind. Greenwald writes for a significant magazine and his supporters praise his meticulous methodology, at least during the Bush Admin.. And I was one of them. He now has glass in his head, with a dem in the WH, and his speculation is right around where the Truthers live.

  8. 8
    Corner Stone says:

    It particularly makes no sense when you consider Obama has become far more aggressive in the past few weeks (up or down vote, the line drawn at the HCR summit).

    You are just precious.

  9. 9
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    This… is why I stopped reading Glenn, and it pains me to do so, because the man is sharp as a whip and great about his facts.

    @Uloborus:

    I stopped reading him a long time ago, and it wasn’t painful, when his self-congratulatory paranoia outpaced his prolixity. And that’s sayin’ something.

  10. 10
    AB says:

    I would like to shoot whoever the hell came up with the phrase “11-dimension [variable]” as applied to politics.

  11. 11
    MikeBoyScout says:

    I’m sorry. I can’t find Glenn’s hypothesis and its likely shortcomings anything to get bent about.

    In the meantime the amount of time spent on from whom have these worthless stories come from, and which of the liberal bloggers are most reasonable should be something the Chief of Staff could put to bed on any given Sunday.

    Why hasn’t he?

  12. 12
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters: “Gosh, I used to really like Bush Critic X – until January 20, 2009, when Bush Critic X began making the same critiques about Barack Obama. Then my opinion about Bush Critic’s X character and intellect suddenly changed totally for reasons I can’t quite figure out.”

    JOHN: Leaving aside the painfully, self-evidently hilarious idea that Rahm’s friends just one day up and decided on their own to wage a massive media campaign on his behalf without telling him, Rahm did it on the record with Charlie Savage in The New York Times two weeks ago – shouldn’t you note that?

    “Mr. Emanuel and others also worried that political fights over national security issues could hamper progress on the administration’s fundamental goals, like overhauling health care, and seemed to lack confidence in Mr. Holder as an administration spokesman on the volatile issue of terrorism detainees. . . .”Mr. Emanuel, who favored a military trial for the Sept. 11 detainees, said his disagreement with Mr. Holder is rooted in different perspectives, not personalities. “You can’t close Guantánamo without Senator Graham, and K.S.M. was a link in that deal,” he said, referring to Mr. Mohammed.”

  13. 13
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @MikeBoyScout: Because as soon as he does, the liberal bloggers will come up with new ones to shoot down, and it never ends. My momma taught me to not respond to crazy people. Maybe Rahm’s did too.

  14. 14
    valdivia says:

    11 dimensional chess only exists when the person proposing it is trying to prove Obama is out to throw the left under the bus, otherwise, according to these people, it does not exist.

    And anyway Obama is in the WH only to throw the people on the left under the bus. Why have people not understood this yet? /snark

  15. 15
    Taterstick says:

    Personally, I think the entire media circle jerk regarding Rahm is a tremendous fairy tale generated by idiots with nothing better to talk about – and that number would include Greenwald.

    However, I will not be comfortable with that opinion until such time as BTD and Fuckhead step in to tell me I am wrong. Then I will rest easy in the knowledge that they are still full of shit.

  16. 16
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: LOL, if you don’t calm down, Obama will send some of his covert Ninja operatives to fix your wagon Mr. Greenwald:-)

    edit – hah. playing the Obama just like Bush card. cool.

  17. 17
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    One can only speculate about which it is

    and it would be irresponsible not to do so

  18. 18
    Napoleon says:

    I doubt Rahm personally was the source of those stories but it is more then plausible that he is behind them, even if in the “who will rid me of this bothersome . . . ” manner. As to why Obama hasn’t done anything, because he is a complete clown that could be rolled by a Girl Scout, and by now Rahm knows that. He has no fear of being fired.

  19. 19
    Corner Stone says:

    @Napoleon: Aaannnndd…we’re off!

  20. 20
    gbear says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    If it’s any consolation, some of us never liked reading you.

  21. 21
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    As for this:

    The second point, that Obama is not only ok with these stories but furthermore is “apologizing” to Washington is as crazy and conspiratorial as I’ve ever seen. It makes, quite honestly, no sense. Obama is ok with spreading stories that appear to have his Chief of Staff undercutting
    him?

    Right – it’s totally unusual for Democrats, when facing serious political difficulties, to announce that they will move to the Right in order to please establishment Washington.

    Dick Morris, school uniforms and the Defense of Marriage Act never happened – nor did this or this.

  22. 22
    eemom says:

    uh oh…….is this gonna be another 900 comment thread?

    Whatever. Personally, I am Rahmed out.

  23. 23
    Uloborus says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:
    Actually, um… yes, Glenn. Basically. You keep treating Obama like he’s Bush. The same interpretation of someone’s behavior that works on (to Godwin and use an extreme example) Hitler does not work on, to grab someone at random, Jimmy Carter.

    Bush had a proven record of twisting the constitution to the absolute limits, and possibly even breaking it. You kept us informed of just how ugly some of that was. When Obama doesn’t walk these things back the way he ought, by all means let us know. It’s why I held onto reading you as long as I did. When you leap into ‘Therefor he is cementing all of Bush’s policies in stone and is going to abuse them exactly the way Bush did.’ I kind of throw up my hands in despair.

  24. 24
    eemom says:

    @gbear:

    you are a commenter after my own heart.

  25. 25
    Max says:

    Love how the professional critic can’t take criticism and resorts to the Obama-worshiper / Obot lines.

    Funny this.

    Isn’t it time for the Oscars?

  26. 26
    Citizen_X says:

    Now that Glenn has showed up, allow me to remind everyone (including Glenn) that the bit about Rahm was an aside to THE MAIN POINT OF THE PIECE, that being the destructive results of anonymously-sourced “reporting.” Or, as GG put it,

    the reason we have to speculate about such matters [Rahm] is precisely because journalists suppress the identity of those who are doing this, leaving us with a bunch of unaccountable royal court gossip and intrigue

    Now back to rampant speculation!

  27. 27
    eemom says:

    hey Glenn — are you even capable of uttering more than two consecutive sentences that do not include the word “establishment”?

    Just curious.

  28. 28
    Mike in NC says:

    As the teabaggers might say, “Obama is Rahming this thing down our throats!”.

  29. 29
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    sniff sniff

    I love the smell of meltdown in the evening!

    Actually, I don’t. I think I’ll go finish up a few things.

  30. 30
    demo woman says:

    @eemom: Shortly the boss will put up the Oscar thread. Then the fun begins. Since John had to put up with Tunch today, he now is trying to amuse himself by starting a blog tiff. imo

  31. 31
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    The thing that bugs me most about these Rahm/Rasputin theories are that for them to have any substantial influence on this Administrations governance, you also have to believe that Obama is not capable or willing to formulate his own policy and see that it gets carried out. It is a round about way of denuding him of relevance and ultimately as being competent for being the POTUS.

    Please Obama critics. If you have a problem with the Obama administration and it’s policies, then take your complaint and fight to him, not his subordinates. It smacks of sleazy cowardice to focus on his CoS;/ And gives me a moon sized headache responding to this nonsense.

  32. 32
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    Uloborous:

    You keep treating Obama like he’s Bush. . . . When Obama doesn’t walk these things back the way he ought, by all means let us know. It’s why I held onto reading you as long as I did. When you leap into ‘Therefor he is cementing all of Bush’s policies in stone and is going to abuse them exactly the way Bush did.’

    I never said, and don’t believe, that Obama is identical to Bush. That’s why it’s a good idea to use quotation marks for what people have actually written, not what you’ve invented in your head and then attributed to them.

    But it’s undeniable that Obama has adopted multiple extremist Bush/Cheney Terrorism policies which (a) Democrats spent years railing against and (b) Obama claimed he opposed and vowed to reverse.

    And if you can find a single person who works on or writes about civil liberties and Constitutional issues who disputes that, let me know.

    Start here.

  33. 33
    schrodinger's cat says:

    I have my own theory about who is leaking these stories.
    Tunch.
    Why?
    Because he is bored, for proof, refer to the post, Tunch is shrill.

  34. 34
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Glenn = Conspiracy Theorist

    Keep fucking that chicken, glenn

  35. 35
    Sly says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    For someone who doesn’t like the constant speculation by the mainstream press about the latest piece of political theater, you sure do seem interested in the speculation by the mainstream press about this latest bit of political theater.

    I like your stuff Glenn, and would agree with the proposition that the WHCoS, or any other political operative, has absolutely no business telling the Attorney General how to do his or her job. In all but a few limited circumstances I’d extend that proposition towards the Office of the President itself. When it comes to the topic of how to try detainees in accordance with the DoJ’s legal responsibilities and traditions, the opinion of Rahm Emanuel should have roughly the same weight as the opinion of the Assistant Secretary for Information Resources Management at the Interior Department: None.

    But to ascribe some sort of sinister conspiracy to what is ultimately attributable to a bunch of gossip columnists engaged in a circle-jerk about rumors of White House infighting is a bit too ridiculous for my tastes. And whether or not such a conspiracy exists has little relevance on the veracity of the proposition stated above.

  36. 36
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: It makes about as much sense as anything else we get from the netroot fever swamp.

  37. 37
    Max Power says:

    Occam’s Razor Candidate for simplest explanation.

    1. Rahm does in fact like stories beneficial to him, and figures they will bolster his influence as the hard-headed Washington hippie-puncher.
    2. Obama doesn’t want to fire Rahm for fear that will place him left of Rahm, and make him look like a weak hippie-appeaser.

    Hows that?

  38. 38
    Corner Stone says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    not what you’ve invented in your head and then attributed to them.

    Get ready for a lot of that at BJ. You’ve crossed the Rubicon here.

  39. 39
    ajr22 says:

    Rahm gave up a whole lot to come work for Obama, it seems kinda dumb to think he would attempt to throw him under the bus after a year. Rahm seems more like the guy that if you insulted Obama in front of him, he would come after you with a bat.

  40. 40
    mr. whipple says:

    “Now back to rampant speculation!”

    LOL.

  41. 41
    MikeJ says:

    Is this lemon-lyman.com?

  42. 42
    El Cruzado says:

    Or alternatively the press could be mostly making shit up. I wouldn’t put it like them.

    And I don’t mean making things up from thin air, but rather building their favored narratives out of anything they might have heard that could be interpreted that way.

  43. 43
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    SLY – Is there something about revering Barack Obama that makes people willing to ignore unpleasant facts even when their noses are rubbed in it:

    But to ascribe some sort of sinister conspiracy to what is ultimately attributable to a bunch of gossip columnists engaged in a circle-jerk about rumors of White House infighting is a bit too ridiculous for my tastes. And whether or not such a conspiracy exists has little relevance on the veracity of the proposition stated above.

    I’ll say it again: Rahm went on-the-record with Charlie Savage to make clear that he disagreed with the decision to grant civilian trials to the 9/11 defendants, and the same language appeared in Jane Mayer’s piece two weeks before with it being made clear that Rahm also disagreed with the decision to release OLC torture memos..

    That’s “on-the-record.”

    I quoted to it and liked to it above.

    Is there something that can be done to make people stop ignoring that and pretending it never happened?

  44. 44
    Corner Stone says:

    @ajr22:

    Rahm gave up a whole lot to come work for Obama

    IMO, Rahm has political ambitions beyond this position. If that is actually true, then CoS is a great place to get a lot of powerful political people to end up owing you favors.

  45. 45
    joe from Lowell says:

    joe from Lowell

    Glenn Greenwald has a powerful mind, but he shuts it off when it threatens to tell him something he doesn’t want to hear.

    Glenn Greenwald

    Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters: “Gosh, I used to really like Bush Critic X – until January 20, 2009, when Bush Critic X began making the same critiques about Barack Obama. Then my opinion about Bush Critic’s X character and intellect suddenly changed totally for reasons I can’t quite figure out.”

    I rest my case.

  46. 46
    scarshapedstar says:

    Rahm may be a lot of things, but he is not a blithering idiot, and I’d bet anything he hates these stories as much as Rahm.

    On the contrary, I think Rahm hates these stories much more than Rahm. Or less, depending on how you look at it.

  47. 47
    John Cole says:

    I’m personally just ready for Rahm to resign so we can move on to a new supervillain. I’m sick and tired of the Rahm stories.

    I’m betting the replacement will be Plouffe or Axelrod, who have it in for progressives because they are more concerned with re-election (or insert the cause here) than they are pleasing whoever is the new annointed progressive leader du jour- it is so hard to keep up, now that even Lynn Woolsey isn’t pure enough.

  48. 48
    demo woman says:

    John put up this post because
    1) he wanted to create an atmosphere where one could carry on an intelligent debate of the most pressing topic of the day.
    In this case the topic would be who’s the biggest cheney, Rahm or his boss.
    2)he wanted to increase blog hits.
    3)he actually is the biggest cheney.

  49. 49
    mr. whipple says:

    I’m lost. Is it now:

    Rahm made Obama do all this crazy LW stuff, or

    Obama made Rahm do all this crazy LW stuff, and..

    in either case we should get preemptively angry because Obama is moving right.

    And in either case, why would the LW blogosphere, that has spent years calling Rahm a DLC centrist/corporate sellout whore put forth either postulate?

  50. 50
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    AJR22:

    Rahm gave up a whole lot to come work for Obama, it seems kinda dumb to think he would attempt to throw him under the bus after a year.

    Totally – I’m sure Rahm is absolutely enraged and devastated about the appearance of multiple articles saying that Obama’s problems are because he hasn’t listened enough to Rahm, and Obama’s salvation lies in following Rahm’s advice.

    I’m sure Rahm is absolutely furious that such articles have appeared.

    Only a Conspiracy Theorist would think otherwise.

  51. 51
    Mike Kay says:

    @John Cole:

    oh please, John, the kooky left already builds conspiracy theories around Geithner and Summers.

  52. 52
    SGEW says:

    Well, this will end well, I’m sure.

  53. 53
    srv says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    Administrations governance, you also have to believe that Obama is not capable or willing to formulate his own policy and see that it gets carried out. It is a round about way of denuding him of relevance and ultimately as being competent for being the POTUS

    Well, I’d think the dem base would be quite comfortable agreeing that St. Ronnie and GW were idiots, but the only talent required to carrying out their policy was sabotaging oversight by the rest of gov’t or media. It’s a bit different when you want gov’t to actually do something.

    This blog was filled with Obama-the-brilliant back in the day, and while I’ve always considered him a policy newb who even won me over with his big talk, I can understand why some still cling to the idea he could be great except for those surrounding him.

  54. 54
    joe from Lowell says:

    Glenn has fallen into the same lazy habit as the Beltway villagers he consorts with: the Broderesque “both sides are exactly the same” dodge.

    The problem is, this belief is every bit as much of of a partisan narrative as one that chooses one or the other party as always being right, but its adherents don’t see it that way. Rather, they believe that adhering to this particular partisan narrative is actually an inoculation against falling for a partisan narrative, so they lack even the most basic awareness that viewing things through such a lens could distort the truth.

  55. 55
    John Cole says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: I don’t understand what the on-the-record thing has to do with anything. So he is on the record disagreeing with things?

    That proves he is behind a recent spate of articles in DC (even when Dana Milbank says definitively that Rahm was not the source)?

  56. 56
    Corner Stone says:

    @joe from Lowell:

    I rest my case.

    I’d pay good money if only that were actually true.

  57. 57
    cat48 says:

    JHC, WTF is wrong with a deficit commission when the debt is $14T & the deficit $l.5T??

  58. 58
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    What’s the frequency, Glenn?

  59. 59
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Corner Stone: Actually, Rahm has only one greater ambition that everyone on Capital Hill knows, and that is to one day be Speaker of the House./ And to be sure, one way to derail that aspiration would be to give up your House seat to go work in the WH, which was why he was reluctant to take the COS job in the first place.

  60. 60
    Max says:

    @mr. whipple: I’m still stuck at (a) we want to be a big tent party that is a better representation of the country and accept that we won’t always agree with 100% of decisions made or (b) we want to be a very small tent of liberals party, which represent a much smaller portion of the country, but boy are we fucking pure.

    Not being a liberal, I hope we still want to be (a). But, I’ve no problem changing my affiliation to Indy.

  61. 61
    gbear says:

    @John Cole:

    John, haven’t you seen? Rahm is going to be replaced with Michael Moore.

    Should we shoot you now?

  62. 62
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOHN COLE:

    I don’t understand what the on-the-record thing has to do with anything. So he is on the record disagreeing with things?

    It’s the whole point.

    The theme of these articles is that Rahm disagreed with many of the controversial decisions made by the administration (such as civilian trials).

    You deny Rahm is responsible for those stories.

    Yet the NYT example is an example where Rahm did it ON THE RECORD.

    Meaning: that is evidence that he himself is going around to reporters and making clear that he disagreed with administration decisions.

    How can you deny that Rahm is doing that when, in the NYT article, he did it EXPLICITLY?

  63. 63
    MikeJ says:

    I’m personally just ready for Rahm to resign so we can move on to a new supervillain.

    After the sport got to Foster they moved on to a new target.

  64. 64
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    who did you vote for for president — Nader, Bob Barr, Cynthia McKinney, or one of the various socialist candidates?

  65. 65
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    who did you vote for for president—Nader, Bob Barr, Cynthia McKinney?

  66. 66
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @mr. whipple:

    I’m lost.

    Emmanuel has said he thinks KSM should be tried by military tribunal, which means that Obama is the secret source for Dana Milbank’s “Rahm was right” column. It was Obama’s way of apologizing to the right. Only an Obama-revering Obamabot McObama-worshipper couldn’t see it.

    Take the blinders off, man!

  67. 67
    joe from Lowell says:

    Another bad habit of Glenn’s:

    He makes and argument “X, and therefore Y,” and when people question the logic that leads him to conclude Y because of X, he pretends that people are questioning X.

    He’s done it twice already on this thread, and pretty much every one of his bitchy little “updates” whining about people who take exception to his reasoning reads exactly the same way.

  68. 68
    IM says:

    But the deficit commission and other moves to the right happened in the open. If the president wants to make the Washington Post and other bastion of conventional wisdom happy, he can directly speak to them. It is not as if a move to the right in american politics is a risky move to be hidden from a vigilant press.

    And I don’t think the speculation that friends of Emmanuel did create this storm in a pint is so absurd.
    Emmanuel after all is a DLCer. He will talk to his DLC friends from time to time.

    Now what is the first and last political instinct of a DLC democrat? Running to the press to complain about other democrats of the imaginary left category.

    Bruce Reed for example is a former co-author of Emmanuel. He is also the pope of the DLC. He probably really believes Obama is a dangerous lefty and Emmanuel the second coming of Bill Clinton. So he takes his concerns to the confession booth of a new democrat, the Washington Post. Or he talks to, say, Lanny Davis or Al From and they go to the Wapo. I mean , the Wapo thinks Dan Gerstein is an “democratic strategist”.

    So I tend to support the idiotic friends or Dana Millbank making thinks up thesis.

  69. 69
    John Cole says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Exactly. He did it on the record. Why would he go around and whisper the same damned thing when he is already on the record? The stories DAMAGE him. They don’t help him- a chief-of-staff never wants that much attention on himself, not even Rahm.

    And even though it puts me in the precarious place of having to trust Dana Milbank, he has specifically and emphatically stated Rahm was not the source:

    http://www.politico.com/news/s.....33276.html

    These stories hurt Rahm and they hurt the President, and Rahm and his team knew ahead of time they would. Yet you still insist he is running around fueling them because… I have no clue why.

    The disconnect here is you for some reason think these stories help Rahm somehow. They don’t. They hurt him, and they hurt him a great deal. They also undercut his boss. There is no reward to these stories for Rahm whatsoever.

  70. 70
    Mike Kay says:

    To sad little paranoid conspiracy theorists like Glenn, Rahm = Keyser Söze

    Glenn, somewhere Joe McCarthy and Roy Cohn are smiling at you. You guys have so much in common.

  71. 71
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOHN COLE –

    Which is it?

    Rahm would NEVER, EVER go to a reporter and say that he opposed some of the administration’s decision.

    Or he did do it, on the record?

  72. 72
    Corner Stone says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck: I’ll admit I don’t know what Rahm’s ultimate political goal is.
    I’m totally speculating that it does not end with Speaker. My guess is he does not go back to the House after CoS.
    Just a SWAG that he’s got bigger fish to fry one day, at least in his own mind.

  73. 73
    Nellcote says:

    One can only speculate about which it is, but if I had to bet, my money would be on

    This is getting into Peggy Noonan territory! “It would be irresponsible not to speculate.”

  74. 74
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @srv: I think he is brilliant, but certainly inexperienced at being POTUS, just like all those that came before him at this stage of his presidency. And he has unprecedented problems to solve in a thoroughly hyperpartisan atmosphere. Not to mention he is the first black president of this country.

    The powers against his agenda are not in the WH, though I am sure there is dispute and vigorous debate, at least I hope so. I think he is learning and adjusting pretty well considering what he’s up against. Rahm is an asshole who was hired precisely for that, but no one held sway over Joe Lieberman, and the HCR is the only thing that has run into serious trouble, just as it was expected to. But obama has regrouped brought in some new people to help him get HCR done, especially Plouffe, and it is moving forward. I just don’t agree that Obama is swayed on policy that much by Rahm, and HCR has gotten pretty damn far with Rahm as enforcer, much further than at any time the past 60 years.

  75. 75
    John Cole says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: I don’t think he would go anonymously. Again, you seem to think these stories HELP Rahm, and I can’t for the life of me figure out why? They are horrible stories for a chief-of-staff. Horrible.

  76. 76
    Maude says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Have a bone to pick with you Glenn about your “here” link.

    It is TPMmuckraker.
    It is an opinion piece.
    It presumes that the Obama Administration is lying about why they wanted state secrets kept secret.

    I am going to watch the who post Bush saga play out.
    I don’t have enough information to form an opinion on this.

    This also states facts not in evidence:
    Obama is a proven liar.
    Obama has a secret agenda.
    Obama has betrayed the American people.
    Etc.

    I think that until someone proves beyond a reasonable doubt that Obama is totalitarian, he is innocent until proven guilty.

    Good to see you here. I hope you visit often.

    You may not agree with me, but you have to admit that I’m cute as a button.

  77. 77
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    For once in your life, be a man, Glenn.

    who did you vote for for president—Nader, Bob Barr, Cynthia McKinney?

  78. 78
    joe from Lowell says:

    Glenn Greenwald, 6:48 PM:

    I never said, and don’t believe, that Obama is identical to Bush. That’s why it’s a good idea to use quotation marks for what people have actually written, not what you’ve invented in your head and then attributed to them.

    Glenn Greenwald, 7:11 PM:

    Rahm would NEVER, EVER go to a reporter and say that he opposed some of the administration’s decision.

    So, which it is, Glenn?

  79. 79
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    MIKE KAY:

    For once in your life, be a man, Glenn. who did you vote for for president—Nader, Bob Barr, Cynthia McKinney?

    It’s not a secret. I repeatedly, unequivocally advocated Obama’s election and urged my readers, including ones who were highly skeptical of him and the Democrats, to do everything possible to make that happen.

  80. 80

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    You really can’t understand the difference between making note of a differing opinion and selling a narrative that hurts the President can you?

  81. 81
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Who brought down WTC-7 ?

    C’mon Glenn, obviously you have some conspiracy theory to explain it.

    There are Birthers, Truthers, and in Glenn’s case, Rahmers.

  82. 82
    joe from Lowell says:

    John Cole

    @Glenn Greenwald: I don’t think he would go anonymously.

    Srsly, that was supposed to be an argument-winner? Pretending not to know the difference between disagreeing with the president and pushing a narrative blaming the president for all of the problems the administration is having?

  83. 83
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mike Kay:

    Who brought down WTC-7 ?

    Wow.
    What a fucking flat wanker you are.

  84. 84
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Corner Stone: I don’t know. Emanuel, whatever else you want to say about him, is smart. Temperamentally, I don’t think he’s a good candidate for higher office, and I think he’s made too many enemies to get the Speaker’s chair. I suspect his long-term ambitions are more in the Terry McAuliffe/Bob Strauss model, power-brokering millionaire eminence grise and wise elder statesman. To wit:

    After serving as an advisor to Bill Clinton, in 1998 Emanuel resigned from his position in the Clinton administration and became an investment banker at Wasserstein Perella (now Dresdner Kleinwort), where he worked until 2002.[29] In 1999, he became a managing director at the firm’s Chicago office. Emanuel made $16.2 million in his two-and-a-half-year stint as a banker, according to Congressional disclosures.[29][30]

    (Wiki) those disclosures tend to run low, don’t they?

  85. 85
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOHN COLE:

    I don’t think he would go anonymously. Again, you seem to think these stories HELP Rahm, and I can’t for the life of me figure out why?

    Now you’re completely contradicting yourself.

    If it’s so “horrible” for Rahm to have these articles appear, why did he speak to Charlie Savage and make it known that he disagreed with administration positions?

    And can you really not figure out why it’s in Rahm’s interests to have the media proclaim that Obama’s salvation lies in listening more to Rahm’s genius? You can’t figure out why that helps Rahm’s?

    You think Rahm’s secret, magic friends who went totally on their own to these reporters are just really dumb and don’t know as much as you do about what’s in Rahm’s interests?

  86. 86
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Then you’re a SELL-OUT!

    Only a DLC-center/right SELL-OUT would have voted for Obama after “he stabbed everyone in the back on FISA.”

    Feet of clay, Glenn. Feet of clay.

  87. 87
    eemom says:

    I repeatedly, unequivocally advocated Obama’s election and urged my readers, including ones who were highly skeptical of him and the Democrats, to do everything possible to make that happen.

    Yeah, if you count “he sucks, but he’s better than McCain” as unequivocal advocacy. Which I guess you do.

  88. 88
    srv says:

    @Corner Stone:

    I’m totally speculating that it does not end with Speaker.

    I’ll double-down crazy and suggest PhRMA lobbyist.

  89. 89
    Mike Kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Sure I am. But note how the Birther/Truther/Rahmer won’t answer.

  90. 90
    joe from Lowell says:

    @ Brien Jackson

    You really can’t understand the difference between making note of a differing opinion and selling a narrative that hurts the President can you?

    Exactly. Why is Glenn pretending that the anonymously-sources stories he’s suddenly so eager to believe contain nothing more than the statements of disagreements that Rahm’s on-the-record statements?

  91. 91
    No Joy in Mudville says:

    I think you’d have to be nuts to think Rahm is behind the recent “Rahm was right” stories. It may be “friends” of Rahm who think they are doing Rahm a favor, or it may be folks in Washington playing their own political games, but no Chief of Staff in their right mind would be behind stories like this. Rahm may be a lot of things, but he is not a blithering idiot, and I’d bet anything he hates these stories as much as Rahm.

    I have no idea who is disseminating these stories. But, then, neither do you. While it may strike you as “nuts” for Rahm to be the source, all I can say is stranger things have happened in Washington — and happen all the time. When dealing with monumental egos, almost anything is possible.

    More than likely, I’d bet these stories are coming from Rahm’s buddies who think they are doing him a favor.

    That sounds plausible, but why didn’t Rahm put a stop to them immediately? There may come a time when the source is less important than the damage the stories do and if and when that happens Rahm will have to go to stop the bleeding.

    I think we’re all missing important information, without which we can’t make sense of these events. Those who want (need) to apologize for Obama no matter what, will always find Greenwald unreliable (except maybe for all those times when he’s critical of the other side). Those who hate Rahm will reflexively find him at the root of every bone-headed thing the administration does. Neither group has any credibility with me (or any of my friends for that matter).

    Eventually, we may find out what we need to know to make sense of this (information does have a way of seeping out over time). I want Obama to be have a successful administration and I don’t give a shit about Rahm Emanuel. If he helps, fine. If he causes problems, he should go. Right now, whether it’s his fault or not, he’s causing problems. If this crap can’t be cleared up very soon, I don’t see the benefit of keeping him. (Of course, there’s a downside to getting rid of him as well, especially if there isn’t proof of his own involvement.) But in the end, it has to be about Obama, not Rahm.

  92. 92
    Corner Stone says:

    @srv: Not big enough to stroke the ego.
    He can make money anywhere, as he has proven.
    It’s a stated IMO with no proof – but I bet he wants more than just cash money.

  93. 93
    SGEW says:

    Can we just cut to the chase now?

    John Cole will agree with Glenn Greenwald’s underlying facts, but disagree with the theoretical conclusion, especially when it comes to assigning motives; Glenn Greenwald will defend his thesis, but acknowledge that it is, naturally, partly political conjecture based on certain assumptions. Leaving us exactly where we started.

    Some of Greenwald critics will chime in and critique his thesis; others will impugn his writing style, facilities, and integrity (both ethical and intellectual). Greenwald will respond by impugning most critics as dehumanized robots who mindlessly follows others’ direction. Tempers will flare, and cruel phrasings will be employed and directed at others with a certain puckish glee. Nobody will have their positions changed.

    Some jokes will be made along the way. The topic will be sidelined towards arguments about the Obama administration’s policies at the Department of Justice. Calls for discussion of other topics (the Oscars, Mr. Cole’s pets, etc.) will appear. Otherwise, not much else to look forward to in this thread, I think.

    Did I get that about right?

    [I suppose most of this could be a statement about almost any comment thread, but these Glennzilla vs. The Griffin ones seem particularly egregious in this manner.]

  94. 94
    taterstick says:

    Please, for the love of all that is holy, can we get a real sanctimonious prick to kick around? This Greenwald guy is nothing but shrill.

  95. 95
    Sly says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Is there something about revering Barack Obama that makes people willing to ignore unpleasant facts even when their noses are rubbed in it:

    “Oh you poor little Obamabot! Whatever will I do with you!”

    For one, you can go fuck yourself. I’m not some simpering sycophant that you can dismiss as such because I say something you disagree with, and your attempt to do so is nothing more than a very weak cop-out.

    I’ll say it again: Rahm went on-the-record with Charlie Savage to make clear that he disagreed with the decision to grant civilian trials to the 9/11 defendants, and the same language appeared in Jane Mayer’s piece two weeks before with it being made clear that Rahm also disagreed with the decision to release OLC torture memos..

    And this means… what exactly? Anonymous source tells Jane Mayer that Emanuel thinks closing Gitmo and doing civilian trials for detainees are mutually exclusive in terms of political capital. Emanuel confirms this himself weeks later.

    But I’m not seeing evidence of a conspiracy to either kneecap the President or, in some backhanded way, provide him political cover. It’s just speculation based on an extremely limited amount of facts and an entire universe of circumstantial evidence. Which is all very interesting if you like that kind of thing. I just made the assumption, based on your past writing, that you don’t. If that was made in error, fine, Glenn Greenwald likes to speculate about political gossip. I’m sure you’ll corner the market.

  96. 96
    BrighidG says:

    Greenwald has never met a fallacy he didn’t like whether it be ad hominem attacks, false dilemmas, or plain ol’ circular reasoning.

  97. 97
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Emanuel, whatever else you want to say about him, is smart. Temperamentally, I don’t think he’s a good candidate for higher office, and I think he’s made too many enemies to get the Speaker’s chair.

    I agree he’s very smart, and very driven.
    It’s just completely IMO, but I think he’s also a driven narcissist who most likely is incapable of properly evaluating how deeply disliked he is in certain circles.
    Just total speculation on my part. Nothing to argue about obviously except for fun.

  98. 98
    Mike Kay says:

    Please, for the love of all that is holy, can we get a real sanctimonious prick to kick around? This Greenwald guy is nothing but shrill.

    LOL!

    I know. We need a real target, not a Birther/Truther/Rahmer conspiracy theorist with several and critical Daddy issues.

    Love-me, Daddy! Love ME!

  99. 99
    John Cole says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: because there is a complete and total difference between going on Charlie Rose and stating you disagree with certain decisions that have been made and fueling an anonymous campaign undercutting your boss and creating division in your administration. Additionally, if he is already on record, why would he secretly be running around pushing these pieces- he is already on the record. And finally, the author of the first of these pieces, Dana Milbank, explicitly states it was not Rahm or his staff.

    And again, you are running on the misconception that these pieces somehow strengthen Rahm. They don’t. They are horrible. They pain a narrative of a chief of staff at odds with his boss, and administration in disarray. These stories are lethal to Rahm.

    Had they appeared months after he left the administration, and we got a “they should have listened to me” tour, it would make sense. Right now, it makes no sense to think he is the source, especially when the author of one of the pieces claims he is not and he is still a member in good standing of the administration.

    I’d look to people trying to get rid of Rahm (either inside or outside the WH), or maybe friends of Rahm’s who think they are doing him a favor or who are just relaying things Rahm may have said to them in confidence, but now they are restating off the record. I think it is insane to think Rahm or the President are behind these stories.

  100. 100
    ajr22 says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: I don’t understand your point, Rahm should be happy that a spate of articles have come out and undermined his President’s authority. So after Obama fires him, and Rahm has him right where he want’s him, he is going to do what? Ya he went on the record demonstrating there is a more centrist voice in Obama’s ear, I don’t see how this means its good to throw your boss under the buss to have good things written about you.

  101. 101
    srv says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    You think Rahm’s secret, magic friends who went totally on their own to these reporters are just really dumb and don’t know as much as you do about what’s in Rahm’s interests?

    This really is a stretch on John’s part. Rahm is pretty damn notorious, and the idea that his “friends” would operate off leash like this is about as logical as those of Rove or dead-ey Dick. Control freaks don’t have autonomous friends.

    It would be more plausible of John to imagine a Republican operative playing 11D with this.

  102. 102
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    John, you need to cut back on your “if the left doesn’t calm down and give Obama a chance I’m going to kill myself” posts by at least two-thirds and substitute anything that will draw Glenn Greenwald into the discussion. Much more interesting reading.

  103. 103

    @joe from Lowell:

    What I don’t get is that there have been plenty of profiles done, mostly around the transition, noting what good friends Rahm and Axelrod are, how far back they go, etc. But now I’m supposed to believe Rahm is orchestrating this campaign to basically trash Axelrod in the Beltway press based purely on speculation?

  104. 104
    Napoleon says:

    @John Cole:

    Again, you seem to think these stories HELP Rahm, and I can’t for the life of me figure out why? They are horrible stories for a chief-of-staff. Horribl

    Yes, in the world you and I live in, but people like him live in an alternative universe.

  105. 105
    Corner Stone says:

    @SGEW:

    Tempers will flare, and cruel phrasings will be employed and directed at others with a certain puckish glee.

    Somebody call me when we reach this phase.
    That’s where I really shine.

  106. 106
    joe from Lowell says:

    If it’s so “horrible” for Rahm to have these articles appear, why did he speak to Charlie Savage and make it known that he disagreed with administration positions?

    Again, conflating the contents of the anonymously-sourced articles with the disagreements voiced in the Charlie Savage interview.

    And can you really not figure out why it’s in Rahm’s interests to have the media proclaim that Obama’s salvation lies in listening more to Rahm’s genius? You can’t figure out why that helps Rahm’s?

    Are you this clueless, Glenn? You can’t figure out why being made out to be a leaking, backstabbing figure isn’t a good way to advance one’s career? You can’t understand why be set up as the alternative to Obama’s judgment harms Rahm’s standing in the White House?

    And as for the public statements of disagreement – what kind of an idiot would say something in public, and then say something very similar, but with the addition of attacks on the president and fluffing of one’s self, and think it will set one up to have greater influence? If that terrible, sneaky Rahm Emmanuel was actually going to carry out such a covert program of backstabbing, the LAST thing he’d do is make public statements along even remotely similar lines.

    I know – maybe you should strike a condescending tone and write that only Obots and naive people could possibly disagree with you, instead of answering the point. Again.

  107. 107
    Nellcote says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    Actually, Rahm has only one greater ambition that everyone on Capital Hill knows, and that is to one day be Speaker of the House./ And to be sure, one way to derail that aspiration would be to give up your House seat to go work in the WH, which was why he was reluctant to take the COS job in the first place.

    So Prez Obama saved us from Rahm as Speaker. Cool.

  108. 108
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    And again, you are running on the misconception that these pieces somehow strengthen Rahm. They don’t. They are horrible. They pain a narrative of a chief of staff at odds with his boss, and administration in disarray. These stories are lethal to Rahm.

    I’ll ask again: if stories highlighting Rahm’s diasagreement with the administration are so harmful to Rahm — “lethal,” even — why did he go on the record to Charlie Savage and say exactly that?

    Looks like Rahm doesn’t agree with you that such stories are “lethal.”

    Nor do his magic, secret friends who – totally on their own initiative — went to these reporters and caused these stories to appear.

    Why would “Rahm’s buddies” do such “lethal” things to him?

  109. 109
    Mike Kay says:

    @BrighidG:

    Greenwald has never met a fallacy he didn’t like whether it be ad hominem attacks, false dilemmas, or plain ol’ circular reasoning.

    This used to happen to me when I was in college, until I found out smoking hash and snorting poppers and meth induced mass paranoia. Once I stopped, all the paranoid conspiracy theories stopped. And I’m proud to say, I stopped without any intervention.

    Seek help, Glenn. Only you can stop the self-abuse.

    btw. Welcome to the NFL.

  110. 110
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @SGEW: I’ve seen this movie too, and acted in it. My favorite scenes, of course, are the Some jokes will be made along the way ones. The rest is reflexive blogger repeats.

  111. 111
    Mark S. says:

    @John Cole:

    Again, you seem to think these stories HELP Rahm, and I can’t for the life of me figure out why?

    Well, maybe the part about how all of Obama’s advisors except for Rahm are idiots. I can’t imagine a chief of staff being upset if people thought that.

  112. 112
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mike Kay:

    But note how the Birther/Truther/Rahmer won’t answer.

    Answer what you fucking clown?

  113. 113
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    NAPOLEAN:

    Yes, in the world you and I live in

    Is that the Obama Cult universe where someone like Rahm Emanuel is far too ethical and restrained to use anonymity to plant positive stories about himself in major newspapers?

    That’s a world I hope to never occupy.

  114. 114
    mr. whipple says:

    @SGEW:

    That’s pretty much it, and it’s why Tunch cries.

  115. 115
    joe from Lowell says:

    @ No Joy in Mudville,

    Those who want (need) to apologize for Obama no matter what, will always find Greenwald unreliable (except maybe for all those times when he’s critical of the other side).

    I have to say, Glenn’s behavior since Obama’s election has made me retroactively question the stuff he wrote about Bush, and whether I was too credulous when I read it.

  116. 116

    @John Cole:

    Also, can we get the beliefs of the Rahmers nailed down? One day Rahm’s the evil centrist corporatist puppet master who’s really calling the shots, the next day he’s got his friends running to everyone WaPo reporter they can find whining about how no one will listen to him.

  117. 117
    srv says:

    @SGEW: You need a new moniker like Debbie Downer.

  118. 118
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Shorter Greenwald: KEYSER SOZE!

  119. 119
    cat48 says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Rahm wanted to be the “first Jewish Speaker of the House.” Quotes because I actually heard him say that.

  120. 120
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Is that the Obama Cult universe where someone like Rahm Emanuel is far too ethical and restrained to use anonymity to plant positive stories about himself in major newspapers?

    You do build some fine strawmen. I give you that.

  121. 121
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOE FROM LOWELL:

    I have to say, Glenn’s behavior since Obama’s election has made me retroactively question the stuff he wrote about Bush, and whether I was too credulous when I read it.

    That’s what I was waiting to here.

    Someone who’s personal devotion to Barack Obama is so extreme that they’re willing to re-consider criticisms of Bush in order to discredit critics of Obama.

    That made my night. I seriously appreciate it.

  122. 122
    IM says:

    Pretending not to know the difference between disagreeing with the president and pushing a narrative blaming the president for all of the problems the administration is having?

    A chief of staff disagreeing with the president in public about a existing policy does create a narrative, I think.

  123. 123
    gbear says:

    @SGEW:

    Some jokes will be made along the way.

    SGEW. I’d hope that you would acknowledge that this is, naturally, partly conjecture based on certain assumptions.

  124. 124
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    This from a guy who defends blood thirsty murderers.

  125. 125
    Corpsicle says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: I’ve got no idea what’s up with the Rahm stories, although I can certainly see the benefit for him to be Cassandra. Whoever’s right, I really appreciate your coverage of civil liberty issues.

  126. 126

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    I’ll ask again: if stories highlighting Rahm’s diasagreement with the administration are so harmful to Rahm—“lethal,” even—why did he go on the record to Charlie Savage and say exactly that?

    Are you being intentionally obtuse, or do you really just not pay any attention to what other people say. It’s not the “highlighting the disagreement” that’s the problem with the stories like Milbank’s, it’s the outright trashing of people like Axelrod, Jarrett, and Gibbs, and by extension the President, as well as the negative narrative it spins about the administration that’s at issue there. I don’t know how many times the distinction has to be explained to you.

  127. 127
    Comrade Kevin says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters

    This is why I can’t take you seriously.

  128. 128
    Corner Stone says:

    @mr. whipple: Why do we scream at each other?
    This is what it sounds like when doves cry.

  129. 129
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    who do you model yourself after – Richard Nixon, Joe McCarthy, or Roy Cohn?

  130. 130
    shep says:

    Obama is ok with spreading stories that appear to have his Chief of Staff undercutting him?

    Yes and the reason is neither of the ones Greenwald offers. Most likely, Rahm is “liberal-washing” Obama. Rahm is continuing his role as the perceived force of darkness in the White House, and they’re pretending that he’s inhibiting Obama’s more liberal desires. It may make Obama look a little weak but that’s better than losing the liberal base entirely now that Obama has proved that his third-way Centrist “ideals” are all his and that he’s no liberal, in spite of playing one at times on the campaign trail. At least, that’s a better theory that Rahm’s beltway buddies giving Rahm an unauthorized reach-around.

  131. 131
    joe from Lowell says:

    I’ll ask again: if stories highlighting Rahm’s diasagreement with the administration are so harmful to Rahm—“lethal,” even—why did he go on the record to Charlie Savage and say exactly that?

    I’ve answered this question more than once. John has answered this question more than once.

    This guy is like a dog with a bone. He’s got his narrative, and not only is he not going to believe arguments that refute it, he’s not even going to acknowledge that they exist.

  132. 132
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Someone who’s personal devotion to Barack Obama is so extreme that they’re willing to re-consider criticisms of Bush in order to discredit critics of Obama.

    Or, that someone became so enamored with digging real dirt on a neocon president, is now short on dirt and is offering corruption pixie dust instead.

  133. 133
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOE FROM LOWELL:

    Is this the kind of “false equivalencies” from Beltway villagers you’re talking about? Or this one?

    Is this place at the point where TPM and Bob Herbert are considered Obama-hating Beltway villagers?

    If not, how are those stories going to be explained away?

  134. 134
    SGEW says:

    Just one critique, Mr. Greenwald:

    Calling other people “cultists” due to their political preferences or allegedly unexamined prejudices towards particular politicians is a scurrilous charge; it is a rhetorical device that should be beneath you.

    Cultism is a deadly syndrome that should be taken seriously; your use in this context (capitalization and all) can only either water down the danger of actual cults (e.g., these kinds of things) or unnecessarily insult your readers. Or both, I suppose.

  135. 135
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Shorter Greenwald: Keyser Söze!

  136. 136
    taterstick says:

    “Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters”

    “Obama Cult universe”

    Look, Greenwald. When you start off by disparaging your audience, you have already lost the battle. Go fuck yourself.
    You couldn’t hack it as a lawyer and you suck as a blogger.

  137. 137
    John Cole says:

    Glenn- Let’s try from another angle.

    I think these stories hurt Rahm because they show a Chief-of-Staff, someone who is supposed to be a behind the scenes guy, at odds with his President, unable to keep the various factions in the WH from gossiping with the press, and help create a narrative of a WH out of control and rife with dissent. They make Rahm look like a complete failure at his job, which is to make the President a success.

    You think they make Rahm look good, why? Because some stories say “rahm was right?” You really think that helps Rahm’s standing in DC? And you think Rahm is behind this even though the author of the first piece, Dana Milbank, on the record states, emphatically, that neither Rahm nor his staff was a source for the story. Why do you think this?>

  138. 138
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    When the day comes when Rahm leaves, who will be the target of you paranoid delusions? Or will just go back to being a Truther distributing street corner pamphlets on how WTC-7 was an inside job?

  139. 139
    joe from Lowell says:

    Is that the Obama Cult universe where someone like Rahm Emanuel is far too ethical and restrained to use anonymity to plant positive stories about himself in major newspapers?

    No, dimwit, for about the sixth time – it’s not “too ethical and restrained,” it’s “too smart.” Look at your little freak-out – you saw these stories, and immediately jumped to the conclusion that Rahm Emmanuel was dishing on his boss. For about the sixth time, THAT MAKES HIM LOOK BAD!

    Capice? Am I, and is John, speaking Greek here?

    That’s what I was waiting to here. Someone who’s personal devotion to Barack Obama is so extreme that they’re willing to re-consider criticisms of Bush in order to discredit critics of Obama.

    Yes, Glenn, because you’re so awesome and everything you write so incredibly fair and reliable that there can’t possibly be any other reason to find you lacking, other than devotion to my third choice during last year’s election.

    It isn’t possible that anyone could find your writing to be garbage for any other reason.

  140. 140

    @shep:

    Oh for fuck’s sake, the simplest answer is that some glorified hanger-on bumped into Dana Milbank some where, fed him a line to make himself look connected, and Milbank ran with the story. That’s pretty much the long and short of the way reporters like Milbank work.

  141. 141
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @John Cole:

    Why do you think this?>

    Because you pull one thread of the conspiracy matrix and the whole thing comes apart. Mr. Greenwald just haz to find diabolical intrigue like we used to have, and having a no drama presnit is teh monkey wrench in the DC advocate shaky pudding. So Grigiry Rahmputin is borne.

  142. 142
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    You think they make Rahm look good, why? Because some stories say “rahm was right?” You really think that helps Rahm’s standing in DC? And you think Rahm is behind this even though the author of the first piece, Dana Milbank, on the record states, emphatically, that neither Rahm nor his staff was a source for the story. Why do you think this?

    As I said, I don’t know what happened because anonymity prevents us from knowing. We can all only speculate, based on what seems most likely.

    It seems very likely to me that Rahm is worried that the administration’s political problems are being pinned on him, and he wants to salvage his reputation by making clear that it’s not his fault.

    It seems very UNLIKELY to me — to the point where I can’t believe anyone would believe it – that Rahm has a team of friends who, on their own, decided to plant these stories without talking to him first.

    You know I respect you immensely, but I can’t believe anyone would actually believe that.

  143. 143
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Why don’t you volunteer to represent KSM. It would give you the opportunity to stick it to the man, to stick it to Rahm, and to present your theory that WTC-7 was an inside job.

  144. 144
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    As I said, I don’t know what happened because anonymity prevents us from knowing. We can all only speculate, based on what seems most likely.

    And the 64 dollar question. Why do you care?

  145. 145
    Mike Kay says:

    Glenn Greenwald = the fringe left wing version of Roy Cohn & Joe McCarthy.

    Keep weaving that conspiracy, Glenn

  146. 146
    John Cole says:

    It seems very UNLIKELY to me—to the point where I can’t believe anyone would believe it – that Rahm has a team of friends who, on their own, decided to plant these stories without talking to him first.

    I find it completely plausible that reporters have talked to some of Rahm’s old colleagues, who he has confided in, and they offer up some dish off the record.

    But that is one of any number of possible scenarios. It could be blue dogs who are mad at the way things are going, trying to use the media to shift things to the right. It could be Rahm’s enemies in or outside the WH trying to get at him. It could be all bullshit, fueled by Rahm haters.

    I find anyone of those scenarios far more likely than Rahm being the source of stories that deeply, deeply damage him and his President and best friend.

  147. 147
    Comrade Kevin says:

    @Mike Kay: Your comments are about as useful as Greenwald’s “Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters” type remarks.

  148. 148

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    It seems very UNLIKELY to me—to the point where I can’t believe anyone would believe it – that Rahm has a team of friends who, on their own, decided to plant these stories without talking to him first.

    You don’t know a whole lot about DC do you?

  149. 149
    Michael Richards says:

    @Mike Kay

    If you want Glenn Greenwald to take your inquiries seriously, you should present them in a more professional manner.

    If you don’t want Glenn Greenwald to take your inquiries seriously, then I assume that your rampant commenting and refreshing is just a catharsis. If so, I encourage you to find a means of catharsis that encompasses greater physical activity or helps others in some way.

    Best wishes.

  150. 150
    shep says:

    It seems very likely to me that Rahm is worried that the administration’s political problems are being pinned on him, and he wants to salvage his reputation by making clear that it’s not his fault.

    No, Rahm and Obama are terrified that they’re losing the liberal base, for good reason, obviously. This is just an attempt to place the stink on Rahm for the policies they hate. C’mon, this isn’t rocket science.

  151. 151
    IM says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    This from a guy who defends blood thirsty murderers.

    Next stop: Complaining about defense lawyers now working for the DOJ.

    Mccarthy seems to be your role model, Kay.

    Show me on the doll where Greenwald touched you.

  152. 152
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOE FROM LOWELL – Is this an example of Beltway villagers engaging in false equivalencies?

    Is this?

    Is this place at the point where TPM (and the “consensus of experts” they quote) and Bob Herbert are considered Obama-hating Beltway villagers?

    If not, how can those things – which say exactly what I argue – be dismissed away?

  153. 153
    ajr22 says:

    As a proud Obot, I would say ya I will look past things Obama is doing that when Bush did them made me mad. Look I know I’m never gonna change the way DC runs because I say it pisses me off on a blog. Ya so Obama has carried over some Bush policies I don’t support, but it is not as if he could just snap his fingers and rid us of all these policies. He can’t even get the senate to vote on anything. I am just happy that a brilliant rational guy who i can relate to and generally think is a good person is in charge. If that means i have to shut up about some things I don’t like I am willing to do that, because attacking Obama helps Republicans, and keeping them out of that office is the most important thing.

  154. 154
    joe from Lowell says:

    Neither of those factual stories are an example of such, Glenn.

    The conclusions you draw from them, on the other hand, are and example of a beltway villager – that is, you – creating a false equivalency.

    I’ve explained this already – you’re taking facts nobody disagrees with, drawing an implausible conclusion, and then when you’re called on your implausible conclusion, pretending that it is the uncontroversial facts that people are disputing.

    You did it when you conflated “Rahm spoke on the record” with “Therefore, I conclude that he’s behind the stories,” and now you’re doing it again with “Obama took these positions” with “Therefore he’s JUST LIKE BUSH.”

    It’s what you do. It’s who you are. And yes, the shoddy, self-serving leaps in logic you make do make me wonder if you weren’t doing the same thing when Bush was president – and it takes an awful lot for me to give George Bush the benefit of the doubt.

    So, anyway, you can apologize for calling me an Obot any time now.

  155. 155
    Brachiator says:

    @shep:

    Yes and the reason is neither of the ones Greenwald offers. Most likely, Rahm is “liberal-washing” Obama. Rahm is continuing his role as the perceived force of darkness in the White House, and they’re pretending that he’s inhibiting Obama’s more liberal desires. It may make Obama look a little weak but that’s better than losing the liberal base entirely now that Obama has proved that his third-way Centrist “ideals” are all his and that he’s no liberal, in spite of playing one at times on the campaign trail. At least, that’s a better theory that Rahm’s beltway buddies giving Rahm an unauthorized reach-around.

    Greenwald, much like other Beltway pundits, is stuck in talking about who’s got power and who doesn’t because it’s a lot more interesting — for them — than talking about the fact that no one there seems capable of developing innovative ideas and implementing them.

    Instead, we get this lame no-dimensional “look for the centrist label” bushwaaa.

    And so it goes.

  156. 156
    Swardo says:

    I really like reading both Glenn Greenwald and John Cole, and I applaud Greenwald for getting into it with commenters. I hope both of these gentleman keep up the good work.

  157. 157
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOE FROM LOWELL – Is this an example of false equivalency from Beltway Villagers you’re talking about?

    Is this?

    Is this place actually at the point where TPM (and its “consensus of experts”) and Bob Herbert are considered Obama-hating Beltway villagers?

    If not, how are their pieces — which say exactly what I say about Obama – to be dismissed?

  158. 158
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @shep: Maybe some liberal activists they are losing if they ever had them in the first place. But Obama’s approval amongst rank and file democrats remains historically high. He has some problems with independents, and the GOP has gone galt on any support. But a few loud liberals, I doubt they ever thought they would have.

  159. 159
    mr. whipple says:

    IIUC: Rahm, on one occassion on the record, said he disagreed amongst other people in the administration on a policy matter.

    It’s a wonder the republic hasn’t fallen yet, with all these people disagreeing.

  160. 160
    MikeBoyScout says:

    Wow.
    Glenn sux?
    Funny, I missed the stuff Glenn’s critics have written that has been as consistently worth reading.

    And John, while I get your point, Glenn’s hypothesis is not so far fetched. Maybe Glenn is wrong, but I think if as facts come out over time to show him to have been mistaken, he’ll own up to it.

  161. 161
    joe from Lowell says:

    It seems very UNLIKELY to me—to the point where I can’t believe anyone would believe it – that Rahm has a team of friends who, on their own, decided to plant these stories without talking to him first.

    Wow. Just…wow.

    I hereby take back and disown my statement about Glenn being a Beltway villager. Indeed, I now have to wonder if he could find Washington, D.C. on a map.

  162. 162
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    I’ll leave all of you with a link to an Obama image so you can have some positive feelings after all of this – I believe this is a favorite of the kind of people participating here – no need to interfere with or comment on the Leader — He’s got this:

    Enjoy.

  163. 163
    Mike Kay says:

    @Michael Richards:

    To the contrary. I don’t view Greenwald as professional. I don’t view him seriously.

    His conspiracy theories are the mirror image for McCarthy and Cohn. Instead of a Red-Scare, he pushes a Rahm-Scare.

    Greenwald should be treated with the scorn and ridicule he’s so richly earned.

  164. 164
    Irrelevant,YetPoignant says:

    We only know what we’re against.

  165. 165
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: You are a real stinker sir, yes you are.

  166. 166
    ajr22 says:

    Glenn lets attack Obama to the point we get Mitt Romney elected, and then you can have some real wrongdoing to write about.

  167. 167
    joe from Lowell says:

    Glenn Greenwald

    I’ll leave all of you with a link to an Obama image

    Beats trying to argue a point, I guess.

    Coward.

  168. 168
    IM says:

    IIUC: Rahm, on one occassion on the record, said he disagreed amongst other people in the administration on a policy matter.

    It’s a wonder the republic hasn’t fallen yet, with all these people disagreeing.

    I still think it is a bit unusual for the chief of staff to contradict the president in public. It would have been quite normal for congressman Emmanuel.

  169. 169

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Way to prove to everyone you aren’t bitter or anything.

    Anyway, the most ironic thing about all of this is your own post. You start out very sensibly complaining about anonymous sourcing, noting that it makes the reporting completely unreliable/useless…and then you use said reporting as if it was stone cold fact to spin out your theories about it. I mean really, I like the occassional longer form blog post as much as anyone, but if you’re having that much trouble maintaining consistency, maybe you ought to split your thoughts up a bit.

  170. 170

    @ajr22:

    Well, it would be good for business.

  171. 171
    joe from Lowell says:

    I believe this is a favorite of the kind of people participating here

    This is why I have so little respect for Greenwald: when someone challenges his ideas, he doesn’t think he needs to consider what they have to say.

    He’s self-evidently right, and those who question that are the wrong kind of people.

  172. 172

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    if stories highlighting Rahm’s diasagreement with the administration are so harmful to Rahm—“lethal,” even—why did he go on the record to Charlie Savage and say exactly that?

    Let’s play “let’s imagine” here, Glenn.

    Le’t s imagine that, for some bizarre reason, you and the head honcho at Salon had a falling-out over some story your published — a falling-out that went public for some reason. In the process, said story got pulled from the site and archives (and Google, etc. Not perfect, but there you are — and please, this is just a hypothetical.)

    It’s one thing to tell a reporter “yes, we fell out over my story on Topic X, it’s pulled, and I disagree — but I’m moving on with writing here”. It may not be great strategy from a job-survival perspective, but rarely is there anything wrong with it, even in the White House. Lots of people in Administrations have gone on-the-record while working, disagreeing with other people, including Presidents, on Administration policies.

    It’s another to decide to convince others — fellow Salon writers, external writers, and so on — to write stories pitching your side of the story. To wage a covert war against Salon because the guy who cuts you a paycheck cut a story. To do, in essence, what you say is one of the options (and, in fairness, only one, but it is one you’ve been intensely defensive of, here) with the spate of Rahm stories out now.

    If it got out — and you know it would — it would be political suicide. Rahm’s already feared, WTF would make him want to convince everyone he’s a two-faced MF? And WTF in his past makes you think he’s even play that game to begin with? Does he strike you as Rove Redux, perhaps?

    We’re not saying that Rahm perfect. We’re saying the idea that a seasoned pol like Rahm would cut his own rep — the only thing you really have in Washington — in such a ham-fisted fashion Makes No Sense At All. It ties him down in a way that doesn’t give him a win now or in the future, and hamstrings him with an act that’s disloyal, from a guy who clearly feels strongly about, and who is known for, his loyalty. It’s like you’re accusing Rahm of having the purported political sense of, say, Sarah Palin or John Edwards.

    (On Edit: I see Elvis has Left The Building.)

  173. 173
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Why don’t you primary Obama in 2012. C’mon Greenwald, stop being a coward and come out and run against OBama with all you conspiracy theories. I dare you. I mean if a nazi like pat buchanan could run against bush in 1992, so could a fringe left winger. Don’t be a coward, and do it.

  174. 174
    Emma says:

    I call BS. This can’t be Glenn Greenwald. The man is a trained attorney, for crying out loud. The way he’s attacking everyone personally but dodging any questions reminds me of some of the worse trolls we’ve had around here.

    Of course, the moron in Tennessee is also a trained attorney… as you were everyone.

  175. 175
    shep says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck

    Reread the landscape you just painted and tell me that Obama can afford very many loud liberals at all. Really, it’s the most logical explanation. Rahm and Obama have been playing liberals and the media this way from the get, see: “bi-partisanship”. It’s a “watch what they do” administration.

  176. 176
    Mike Kay says:

    @Brien Jackson:

    Touché

  177. 177
    NobodySpecial says:

    @John Cole:

    You think they make Rahm look good, why? Because some stories say “rahm was right?” You really think that helps Rahm’s standing in DC? And you think Rahm is behind this even though the author of the first piece, Dana Milbank, on the record states, emphatically, that neither Rahm nor his staff was a source for the story. Why do you think this?

    Actually, given how Washington deals with ‘outsiders’ (Broder et. al. v. Clinton being the best example), I got no problem with the idea that someone who wants to ingratiate himself with the Village aligning himself with the Village’s opinion, which is that Obama sucks and can’t run anything right. So in that respect, Rahm WOULD be helped by heaping abuse on Obama – if he expects Obama to be a one-termer, he’s making himself a soft place to land.

    “Yeah, I was his CoS, but you saw him, completely off the rails. What could I do?” I don’t put that line of reasoning past Rahm.

    Also, given Milbank’s previous history, if he says it’s sunny outside, I’m grabbing an umbrella and galoshes, because the man IS a flat liar. I believe damn little of the Washington press after Judy Miller, and Dick Whisperer has done some extra stuff to make me think that he would lie about everything from his sexual preference to what kind of animal he likes.

    Bottom line for me? Both of you offer credible arguments, but I trust no wanker from the Swamp on the Coast, so I’ll keep both options open. And some of your best supporters do you no credit, Cole.

  178. 178
    eric says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: If rahm has already been on the record, why go off it now?

    Truth is that this has long been a parlor game in DC where leaks are used as policy weapons by people with competing interest. unless you KNOW the source, you can’t know the source. That is what makes anonymous sources so insidiuos.

  179. 179
    joe from Lowell says:

    So, to sum up:

    Greenwald: I think Rahm was behind the stories. Here’s why.

    Cole: I disagree. Here’s why.

    Greenwald: I don’t think your argument makes sense. Here’s why.

    Cole: But it does make sense. You’re not considering this.

    (so far, so good, on both sides)

    Greenwald: Obot cultists! If you lurve Obama so much, why don’t you marry him?!?

    I think it’s pretty clear where the argument was lost.

  180. 180

    @Emma: It’s not Glenn’s 1st go-round the “You made angry comments at me! Glenn Smash!” rodeo here, frankly.

    And he’s done it in at least one other forum I’m aware of.

    So yeah, sadly, that was very likely Glenn Greenwald, based upon past experience.

  181. 181
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOE FROM LOWELL:

    Neither of those factual stories are an example of such, Glenn.

    The conclusions you draw from them, on the other hand, are and example of a beltway villager – that is, you – creating a false equivalency.

    From TPM:

    Salon’s Glenn Greenwald wrote that the move “demonstrates that the Obama DOJ plans to invoke the exact radical doctrines of executive secrecy which Bush used.” MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann called it “deja vu all over again”. Not having Greenwald’s training in constitutional law (and perhaps lacking Olbermann’s all-conquering self-confidence), we wanted to get a sense from a few independent experts as to how to assess the administration’s position on the case. Does it represent a continuation of the Bushies’ obsession with putting secrecy and executive power above basic constitutional rights? Is it a sweeping power grab by the executive branch, that sets set a broad and dangerous precedent for future cases by asserting that the government has the right to get lawsuits dismissed merely by claiming that state secrets are at stake, without giving judges any discretion whatsoever?In a word, yes.

    BOB HERBERT:

    Policies that were wrong under George W. Bush are no less wrong because Barack Obama is in the White House.
    One of the most disappointing aspects of the early months of the Obama administration has been its unwillingness to end many of the mind-numbing abuses linked to the so-called war on terror and to establish a legal and moral framework designed to prevent those abuses from ever occurring again. . . . Americans should recoil as one against the idea of preventive detention, imprisoning people indefinitely, for years and perhaps for life, without charge and without giving them an opportunity to demonstrate their innocence. And yet we’ve embraced it, asserting that there are people who are far too dangerous to even think about releasing but who cannot be put on trial because we have no real evidence that they have committed any crime, or because we’ve tortured them and therefore the evidence would not be admissible, or whatever. President Obama is O.K. with this (he calls it “prolonged detention”), but he wants to make sure it is carried out — here comes the oxymoron — fairly and nonabusively. Proof of guilt? In 21st-century America, there is no longer any need for such annoyances. Human rights? Ha-ha. That’s a good one. . . . The Obama administration is also continuing the Bush administration’s abuse of the state-secrets privilege. The Bush and Obama view of the state-secrets privilege effectively bars any real examination of such egregious mistakes.

    It just doesn’t get any clearer than that.

  182. 182
    Instantly Moderated Commenter says:

    @Mike Kay: If scorn and ridicule are based on what one earns, where is yours? Here’s some, for just desserts: Most of the arguments you post here are risible, and are often based on falsities and insulting innuendo. Your logic is sophomoric, your vocabulary juvenile, and your tone infantile. You lessen the overall intellectual content here, yet do so without going so far as to invoke anyone’s pie filter, so as to nickle and dime the conversation down to your level. You do your own “side” no favors, and people whose opinion you should respect view you with contempt.

    Been saving that one for a while, now. Just for you.

  183. 183
    Mike Kay says:

    @Emma:

    I call BS. This can’t be Glenn Greenwald. The man is a trained attorney, for crying out loud. The way he’s attacking everyone personally but dodging any questions reminds me of some of the worse trolls we’ve had around here.

    He wasn’t much of an attorney. He’s no different than Liz Gheney — a conspiracy theorist who lobs bombs. He’s the fringe leftist version of a neo-con (ie Iraq was behind 9/11).

  184. 184
    Tonal Crow says:

    @Maude:

    I think that until someone proves beyond a reasonable doubt that Obama is totalitarian, he is innocent until proven guilty.

    It’s perilous to give any government official that degree of latitude.

  185. 185
    Mike Kay says:

    @Instantly Moderated Commenter:

    More periods, less commas.

  186. 186
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Emma: Maybe “Glenn Greenwald” was a sock puppet that someone else ran to make Glenn look bad, and the real Glenn is having a quiet evening at home getting ready for the Oscars. Or else the real Glenn got a rogue ROT-13 script stuck in his operating system that applies a different ROT-x transformation to each letter that he types, so that a restrained and logical series of comments were turned into the repetitive, vain, petty nonsense that has been posted under his name here tonight.

    Those are the only two possible alternatives. No other alternatives are possible. If you suggest any other alternatives, you are obviously not as smart as me.

  187. 187
    joe from Lowell says:

    OK, Glenn, now I’ll explain it AGAIN.

    Nobody has questioned that those particular policies are wrong, and too close to Bush’s. I haven’t. Nobody has. That’s not the conclusion you drew, that is controversial.

    Are you still with me? I’m going to stop here, because you don’t always pay attention to what people not named “Glenn Greenwald” are saying, so I want to make sure you’re keeping up before I keep going.

  188. 188
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @gbear:

    Ding!  Nailed that one dead center gbear. Excellent shot! :)

    Put this in the same category as the Milbank (hit) pieces; drop it in the round file and flush. Twice if necessary.

    Glen Greenwald: “Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters:”

    Fucking third graders can come up with better childish insults than this. Nice try at dismissing anyone who disagrees with you by using a well-worn tactic of those who have absolutely nothing to back their bullshit up. Stuff a barnacle-encrusted anchor up your ass and take a long walk off a short pier.

    Be sure to take Jane Hamster along for the walk, she can have the other side of the anchor.

    the reason we have to speculate about such matters [Rahm] is precisely because journalists suppress the identity of those who are doing this, leaving us with a bunch of unaccountable royal court gossip and intrigue

    Really Glen? Let me guess, you must sleep in a Snap-On tool chest, right?

  189. 189
    Tonal Crow says:

    @joe from Lowell: Greenwald is not guilty of those charges. Reread the second message.

  190. 190
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Emma: I had the same thought. He started in with teh “Obama Cult” stuff in his second or third comment. Surprisingly childish.

  191. 191
    Dave C says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    I tend to agree with John on this particular issue, but I nevertheless generally enjoy your writing. Having said that, you aren’t doing yourself or your argument any favors here by acting this immaturely.

  192. 192
    Tonal Crow says:

    @Mike Kay: “Fringe leftist”? What kinda pie you like?

  193. 193
    Instantly Moderated Commenter says:

    @Mike Kay: You’re a Hemingway fan, I wager.

  194. 194
    NobodySpecial says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    You didn’t actually happen to read the first few comments before his, right? I think ‘childish’ applies to both sides.

  195. 195
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @shep: I don’t really get where your coming from in this comment. All I know is an overwhelming majority of actual democrats out in the country like and approve of Obama. The whole “bipartisan” thing they do is because of two things. First it is what he promised in the campaign, and during a new POTUS’s first year, it is important to keep faith with such campaign promises, and second, the effort matters to independent swing voters who decide elections in this polarized country. It also puts pressure on the 2 or 3 gooper moderates left in the senate that come from blue states, and that he needs to beat filibusters of the future.

    The liberal left was never going to go along with this center left progressive president. And I mean the real definition of that term. He can’t please them because they are no where near the majority in this country, either overall or within the dem party. Living in the blogosphere is not an education on the us electorat on the whole. No where near it. And Obama is president of the entire country, not just DC liberal activists or those on the internet.

  196. 196
    joe from Lowell says:

    Tonal Crow,

    OK, I just reread the second comment. Greenwald did precisely what he accused the commenter of – he made up a silly straw man versions of someone’s actual statement, to attribute to him.

  197. 197
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    DAVE C –

    I tend to agree with John on this particular issue, but I nevertheless generally enjoy you’re writing. Having said that, you aren’t doing yourself or your argument any favors by acting this immaturely.

    I came here to discuss this with John and dispute what he wrote.

    I’ve seen many of the regulars here before — I don’t have respect for people whose political worldview is dominated by a deep reverence for a Political Leader and contempt for those who oppose him, and I’m not interested in pretending I do. Such people, by definition, aren’t susceptible to reasoned argument — they’re in love, not engaged in rational discourse — and so I don’t spend my time or energy trying. I’m talking about many of the most vocal and active commenters here, not all — this blog has attracted many of the hardest-core Obama loyalists for awhile.

    Ask anyone who writes about politics for a living how they have come to treat the hard-core cultists and you’ll hear much the same.

  198. 198
    Wannabe Speechwriter says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    I’ll ask again: if stories highlighting Rahm’s diasagreement with the administration are so harmful to Rahm—“lethal,” even—why did he go on the record to Charlie Savage and say exactly that?

    Maybe it’s because Obama doesn’t mind having people on his staff who will admit when they have a disagreement. Maybe this puts me in the Obama Cult (I bet you’ll put me in it) but Obama genuinely does seem to want a variety of points of view.

    I think Mike Tomasky nailed it with his comment:

    Obama needs an Emanuel-like figure around him. And he needs operate within political limits, at times. But at other times, he needs to do the right thing and not worry about what Lindsey Graham is going to say.

    While this was way overplayed before Obama’s Inauguration, I do think the “Team of Rivals” concept has its merit. Anyone who works in Washington needs to have someone who knows the pulse of that city and knows where the tall mountains lie. However, you’re right in the regard there are times when Obama needs to scale them (and when he needs to blow them up).

    What you love to do is Guilt By Association. Just because Obama has a senior member of his staff who happens to be a Washington Insider doesn’t mean Obama is constantly worrying what David Brooks or David Broder has to say. I don’t remember your extensive articles about how Andy Card was the puppet master of the Bush Administration.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Rahm’s role in the Administration is overplayed by everyone. Obama is not going to go out on a limb for his Chief of Staff (to use a “West Wing” quote-“I take a bullet for the President, not the other way around.”) I also think your crusade of Rahm as Puppet Master actually undermines your case against criticizing Obama-now when we Obama worshipers want to defend Obama, we merely have to say “It’s Rahm’s fault and Obama carries no responsibility whatsoever.” You’ve given us plenty of articles to prove our case.

    You know about as much as what Obama is thinking as I do. You’ve never spent any personal time with the President or his Chief of Staff, you’ve never had access to any personal writings (ex. diaries) of the President or his administration. You’re a brilliant lawyer but you hold no advanced degrees in psychoanalysis. When Obama breaks the laws, tell us. However, if you try and write about “what Obama secretly feels,” you have as much credibility as the Birthers or the Truthers.

    I except to hear back how I’m secretly an Obama worshiper and am a total hypocrite compared to the Bush years.

  199. 199
    Mike Kay says:

    @Instantly Moderated Commenter:

    Faulkner coulda used more periods.

  200. 200
    joe from Lowell says:

    I’ve seen many of the regulars here before—I don’t have respect for people whose political worldview is dominated by a deep reverence for a Political Leader and contempt for those who oppose him, and I’m not interested in pretending I do. Such people, by definition, aren’t susceptible to reasoned argument—they’re in love, not engaged in rational discourse—and so I don’t spend my time or energy trying. I’m talking about many of the most vocal and active commenters here, not all—this blog has attracted many of the hardest-core Obama loyalists for awhile.

    …and then, I’m just going to lump in anyone who disagrees with any argument I make into that category, and presto! I don’t have to defend my arguments logically anymore.

  201. 201

    @eemom: Even Chomsky was advocating for Obama because he knew that Obama was the better of the two choices.

  202. 202
    ajr22 says:

    Glenn your a supporter of civil and human rights no matter who is in office, and I respect you for it. However at what point is it counter productive to your goals. Is attacking Obama and hurting him for his lack of action going to achieve what you want? Maybe, but probably not, and it might just put a Republican who wants to torture his neighbor, so he’ll keep his kid off his lawn back in charge. How about we just reduce the hostility towards the good guys.

  203. 203
    PK says:

    I’ll leave all of you with a link to an Obama image so you can have some positive feelings after all of this – I believe this is a favorite of the kind of people participating here – no need to interfere with or comment on the Leader—He’s got this:

    Enjoy.

    Seriously! How old are you? This would make a stubborn five year old proud.

  204. 204
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Jeebus, you are a pompous ass.

  205. 205

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    So, how about you explain how it is that you can possibly spin a theory about who is leaking a story and what is motivating them to do so based on a story built around anonymous sources. Or just explain why it is that the two ends of your post are a complete contradiction.

    Quite frankly, you could replace “Obama” and “Rahm” with “Bernie Sanders” and “Dennis Kucinich” and my critique of you would be the same.

  206. 206
    Mike Kay says:

    @Instantly Moderated Commenter:

    Falkner could of used more periods.

  207. 207
    Dannie22 says:

    @Mike Kay: I think your posts are hilarious. Keep writing them.

  208. 208
    IM says:

    joe from lowell,

    (so far, so good, on both sides)

    Greenwald: Obot cultists! If you lurve Obama so much, why don’t you marry him?!?

    You left out the part where you called Greenwald a dimwit. But perhaps that was a term of endearment.

  209. 209
    joe from Lowell says:

    When Obama breaks the laws, tell us. However, if you try and write about “what Obama secretly feels,” you have as much credibility as the Birthers or the Truthers.

    Aw, now you’re gone and made the second part of my point to Glenn, before I could make sure he hadn’t let his eyes go out of focus and read the first as a series of “I heart Obama” epigrams.

  210. 210
    Sly says:

    @Emma:

    I call BS. This can’t be Glenn Greenwald. The man is a trained attorney, for crying out loud.

    Larry Johnson was career CIA and offered pretty sensible criticisms of the Bush administration from a military and intelligence perspective, as well as analysis on the Valarie Plame scandal.

    And also a completefuckingnutcase.

    Not drawing an equivalence. Just saying that someone who made sensible arguments and who had good credentials engaged in a level of conspiracy-mongering far more extreme than anything seen here.

  211. 211
    Mark S. says:

    I don’t really think Rahm is behind the stories. Milbank’s piece is a tongue bath, but it’s just opinion. The Estrada one quotes some blue dogs and moderate Republicans, i.e. people who probably like Rahm better than the rest of the Administration.

    I also do not think Rahm is pulling his hair out over these stories. Every single Administration that I have a passing familiarity with has had rivalries in the staff, starting with George Washington. Do you think Hamilton would have been really upset if the Philadelphia Gazetteer wrote a story about how every time Washington fucked up it was because he was listening to Jefferson?

  212. 212
    Mike Kay says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    I came here to discuss this with John and dispute what he wrote.

    You’re such a drama queen. If you really wanted to do that, you could have sent him an email. Instead you attack everyone like a leftist Liz Cheney doppelgänger.

  213. 213
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @NobodySpecial: Actually, I did. Cole said he agreed with GG’s main post, then GG added a convoluted and non-sensical (actually barely coherent) bit of mind-reading Cole critiicized. GG responded–not in his second or third post as I had remembered, but his first post, with this:

    Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters: “Gosh, I used to really like Bush Critic X – until January 20, 2009, when Bush Critic X began making the same critiques about Barack Obama. Then my opinion about Bush Critic’s X character and intellect suddenly changed totally for reasons I can’t quite figure out.”

    Greenwald intellectually masturbated into the blogosphere and got called on it (very politely and reasonably) and responded with that little tantrum, as if his silly paranoia (Obama is sending Rahm out to give anonymous interviews critiquing Obama as a means of Obama apologizing to David Broder and Tim Russert’s ghost– that was the original point addressed by John Cole) were a grand and principled analysis of government policy, stemming from “character and intellect”. I’m gonna stick with ‘childish’.

  214. 214
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Shorter GG: “Rabbits hop, as do Manx cats. That means that at one time a rabbit and a cat were crossbred.”

    Good thing you’re not a detective.

  215. 215

    @Wannabe Speechwriter: Do we really need Rahm’s writings? He’s been pretty open about his intentions if you read enough. Did you read Froomkin’s column the other day? He nailed Emanuel to a “T”.

  216. 216
    Emma says:

    Comrade Mary: LOL on the ROT-13 script. Makes as much sense as anything else.

  217. 217
    sparky says:

    @SGEW: hey! you said you weren’t going to get the hem of your garment muddy!

    Fowl! [sic]

    i gotz some pints, too:

    a. to the extent Glenn erred here, i’d say it was in offering only two options. because so much of this is speculation it is possible that there is a critical element missing. FWIW (zip) i concur with the notion above that it’s also reasonable to infer that this is a kind of washing of Obama. at least it fits with the other current narrative–everything would be peachy keen but for the obstructionists, whoever they are. is that why? i have no idea. nor, it should be said, do i care. for all i know, this story is nothing but distracting fluff.

    b. one other thing for mister G: i suspect that because of your legal training, you are a bit more oblique than others. example: when you brought up the Rose interview, i presume you were going here: when people who are careful public speakers use the same language weeks apart and in different contexts, it’s reasonable to infer an organized campaign of some sort. but you didn’t “connect the dots” in a painfully explicit fashion and consequently the drawing goes awry for some of us.

    c. it’s always fascinating to see how people perceive the world. mistah cole and mistah greenwald apparently disagree because (it seems) they perceive acts through the prism of their experiences with other humans in organizational contexts. consequently, at the whiff of an organized campaign, Glenn theorizes about why, and meanwhile John, working from a different perspective, just can’t go to the same place because he can’t see the point of a campaign that seems to undermine the WH being orchestrated from inside the WH.

    it seems eminently reasonable to me that given their differing perspectives they would not arrive at the same conclusion, and, in addition, have some difficulty in going with the other person’s.

    but it is interesting to watch. at least from the sidelines.

  218. 218
    Mike Kay says:

    @Dannie22:

    I don’t think Greenwald has been beetch slapped so hard since he was on the playground.

    And really, his “LOVE-ME, DADDY!” issues, permeate all his ranting and conspiracy theories.

    He’s no different than Liz Cheney.

  219. 219
    joe from Lowell says:

    @ Brien Jackson:

    I think Greenwald’s pieces about the problems with anonymous sourcing were some of the best things he’s ever written. It’s sad that those principles and that skepticism goes right out the window as soon as he gets a chance to stick it to Obama and the “O-bots.”

    I think all of this lashing out as those who dispute his argument as reflexive responses driven by an opinion about Obama is just so much projection. Believing the very worse about someone without evidence is really no different than believing the very best without evidence – but there is a certain class of faux-sophisticate who don’t realize that.

  220. 220
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    BRIEN JACKSON:

    So, how about you explain how it is that you can possibly spin a theory about who is leaking a story and what is motivating them to do so based on a story built around anonymous sources.

    You’re deeply, deeply confused.

    The whole point of my post is that the use of anonymity usually obscures rather than enlightens.

    The Rahm articles illustrate that perfectly – because we don’t know where the quotes are coming from, all we can do is speculate about who is behind them.

    That’s true for me, for John, for you, and for everyone else here with a theory.

    I then made clear that I was speculating about what I think is behind the Rahm stories — and I based my speculation on evidence — including Rahm’s on-the-record statements to Savage (which demonstrate he’s pushing this storyline: I disagreed with unpopular decisions); the fact that there are “we’re-turning-more-centrist” stories appearing (which I linked to); and the fact that an obvious culprit for RAHM-IS-GREAT articles is Rahm.

    John did exactly the same thing: he speculated about who was behind this story (it was Rahm’s unnamed “buddies” who did it without Rahm’s knowledge) — a major “conspiracy theory,” by definition.

    I explicitly said I don’t know and am only speculating about what happened, and did so to underscore how anonymity obfuscates. That’s what these words mean:

    It seems to me there’s one of two possible explanations for this episode . . . Of course, the reason we have to speculate about such matters is precisely because journalists suppress the identity of those who are doing this, leaving us with a bunch of unaccountable royal court gossip and intrigue, the authors of which are completely shielded by these “journalists.” That’s why anonymity more often than not obfuscates rather than enlightens.

  221. 221
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Emma: You are a very smart woman. Here, have a cupcake.

  222. 222
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    I find it completely plausible that reporters have talked to some of Rahm’s old colleagues, who he has confided in, and they offer up some dish off the record.

    Even more plausible is that Rahm is not the source in the same sense that Cheney was not the source of the Plame leak. You talk to your people and then they talk to reporters. The alternative is that Rahm blabs about inner circle deliberations to untrustworthy people.

    Horowitz’s piece made clear that some of his sources were Emanuel “allies”. So either this is something similar to the Cheney-Libby dynamic or Emanuel’s “allies” are a bunch of backstabbers. I’ll let you choose which is preferable.

  223. 223

    @Mark S.:

    I don’t really think Rahm is behind the stories. Milbank’s piece is a tongue bath, but it’s just opinion.

    I really, really don’t want to get drug into guessing how this went down, but having seen a few of these things get seeded down here, here’s my best guess (based on absolutely nothing more than having seen this scenario play out before). Someone, probably a senior hill staffer, or even a Congressman (sitting or former) bumps into Milbank somewhere and they get to bullshitting. The person almost certainly exaggerates their closeness to Rahm, but in any event, they definitely probably haven’t talked to him about this, and I’d be surprised if they’d talked to him at all in months. So in the course of bullshitting, our mysery person starts going on about how the problem with Obama is that he just won’t listen to Rahm, which sends up Milbank’s “possible column” radar, in part because it happens to contradict a recent leftie-blogosphere meme, that Obama’s problem is that he’s letting Rahm pull his strings. Milbank makes some calls the next day fishing for quotes, and after a whole day of cherry-picking, he comes away with enough material to write a column that’s sure to get him a ton of attention for a week or two.

  224. 224
    Bob Natas says:

    “Rahm and Obama have been playing liberals and the media this way from the get, see: “bi-partisanship”. It’s a “watch what they do” administration.”

    Bingo. A comment like this ought to win the thread, though I think the author meant “get go.” What you are seeing is the obvious strategy: you need at least some of the fringe left to man the phone banks in the run up to 2012, so an explanation will eventually be demanded as to why fairly important things either did or did not happen. Faith in Obama must be restored by insisting that he, really, does believe in everything that you, dear voter, believe.

    It probably doesn’t matter too much, outside of a couple of percentage points. Most voters are comfortable enough with torture, military tribunals, and whatnot.

  225. 225
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOE FROM LOWELL:

    It’s sad that those principles and that skepticism goes right out the window as soon as he gets a chance to stick it to Obama and the “O-bots.”

    Believing that Rahm is behind RAHM-IS-GREAT stories is “skepticism” (as the WP Ombudsman put it today: “assertions offered with impunity erode credibility, especially when politically savvy readers suspect that Emanuel supporters are trying to spin The Post”).

    What lacks skepticism is to believe that Rahm had nothing to do with the proliferation of RAHM-IS-GREAT stories suddenly appearing, and that instead, his friends — totally on their own and without consulting with him — just one day decided to go plant them.

  226. 226
    joe from Lowell says:

    IM,

    You left out the part where you called Greenwald a dimwit.

    Oh, was it my tone that forced Greenwald to ignore John Cole’s argument, and dismiss anyone who found his reasoning implausible as mindless drones in the thrall of a cult-master?

    A thousand pardons. Poor Glenn – the was no way he could answer John’s point about this doing nothing to help Rahm once I responded to an insult with another insult.

  227. 227
    Mike Kay says:

    And the nominees for Best Conspiracy Theorist are:

    A) Liz Cheney for “The Arabs are Coming, The Arabs are Coming”

    B) Glenn Beck for “Obama is a Black!”

    C) Sarah Palin for “Death Panels”

    D) Orly Taitz for “Obama is a Kenyan”

    E) Glenn Greenwald for “Rahm = Kaiser Soze!”

    And the Kooky goes to.. (rips open envelope) … Glenn Greenwald for Rahm = Kaiser Soze!

    (glenn runs down aisle after tripping over himself).

  228. 228

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    And that’s nice, but you’re not really disproving what I said. You were right at the outset; the use of anonymity obscures the story. Your speculation is completely useless, because it’s completely baseless. You’re making too many assumptions. For starters, you’re making assumptions about where the leak came from. Then, you’re making assumptions about how dutifully the reporters have relayed the information they got, not just that they aren’t embellishing the “Obama needs to listen to Rahm angle,” but that they aren’t ignoring people who are saying otherwise so as not to disrupt their story. And if I really wanted, I’m sure I could identify another half dozen or so assumptions of fact you’re making.

    You should have just stuck with your original thought.

  229. 229

    @ajr22: So you are saying Greenwald has the power to make Obama a one-term President?

  230. 230
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    BRIEN JACKSON

    Someone, probably a senior hill staffer, or even a Congressman (sitting or former) bumps into Milbank somewhere and they get to bullshitting.

    And how do you explain the same exact story getting planted with Jane Mayer in the New Yorker, Charlie Savage in the NYT, and Jason Horowitz in the WP?

    Did the same random staffer just so happen to bump into them, too, and start puffing his closeness to Rahm and feed them the same line?

    And all of those reporters were taken by it?

  231. 231
    John Cole says:

    The fact this thread is still going pretty much validates the main thrust of Glenn’s post about anonymous sources.

    We just disagree about the update.

  232. 232

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    What lacks skepticism is to believe that Rahm had nothing to do with the proliferation of RAHM-IS-GREAT stories suddenly appearing, and that instead, his friends—totally on their own and without consulting with him—just one day decided to go plant them.

    I can’t speak for anyone else, but I don’t “believe” anything. I just don’t know. That’s the whole fucking point! Believing anything with so little established facts is just plain stupid, whichever side you’re coming down on.

    I will say that Cole’s much more right than you are about the effect this has on Rahm though. If Rahm were spreading these stories painting a negative narrative around the President and trashing the senior staff around Obama, it would not reflect well on him at all considering his position.

  233. 233
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    BRIEN JACKSON

    You were right at the outset; the use of anonymity obscures the story. Your speculation is completely useless, because it’s completely baseless. . . . You should have just stuck with your original thought.

    I generally avoid speculating. I agree with you that it’s generally not very worthwhile. In the rare cases I do it, I go out of my way explicitly to label it speculation, and provide my basis for it — as I did here. You didn’t find my bases persuasive – fine – but I did have them, and I cited them. My speculation was therefore not “baseless.”

    Of course, John did exactly the same thing here – as did most commenters — including you.

    They INSIST that Rahm wasn’t behind the story. In fact, John’s title of the post is: “RAHM IS NOT THE SOURCE.” You made arguments backing that up.

    That’s every bit as speculative as I what I wrote. It’s also conspiratorial (Rahm’s friends went and did it without his knowing). Somehow, that speculation doesn’t bother you – in fact, you’ve endorsed it.

  234. 234

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    The “same exact story” didn’t land with Mayer and Savage, and the Horowitz story was done by the same paper after Milbank’s column, so if I’m guessing (and I don’t really care to, but if it makes you feel better), I’d guess that the Milbank piece generated a lot of attention, and the Post wanted to go back to the well. And yes, I’d imagine Horowitz talked to a lot of the same people, if he talked to anyone at all, frankly.

  235. 235

    @Brien Jackson: And do you really think Rahm cares? Look at Rahm’s history. He has a tremendous ego. He’s not afraid to piss on supposed allies. Shall I go on?

  236. 236
    Mnemosyne says:

    @eric:

    If rahm has already been on the record, why go off it now?

    This is the bit of Glenn’s conspiracy theory that he doesn’t seem to be able to explain. If Emanuel is willing to go on the record to discuss his disagreements with the president, what’s his rationale for suddenly going off the record and only making anonymous comments to reporters about the same disagreements? It’s not like anyone is unaware of where he stands, so why go anonymous after being on the record? What does it gain Emanuel?

    I’m also not quite sure how Obama’s civil liberties record proves that Emanuel is the anonymous leaker about the inside workings of the White House, but Glenn seems to have it established in his head as proven fact, so I don’t think we’ll get an answer for that, either.

  237. 237
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    At least this time I wasn’t accused of maintaining a secret slush fund and all sorts of other nefarious plots, so that’s an improvement.

  238. 238
    NobodySpecial says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Actually, I was talking about the comments before he even started posting in this thread.

    Oh, wait, I know why you don’t want to discuss that. Because even before he made his first post on this thread, some dude named Jim said:

    I stopped reading him a long time ago, and it wasn’t painful, when his self-congratulatory paranoia outpaced his prolixity. And that’s sayin’ something.

    Like I tell people all the time: Want respect? Show some. You don’t, therefore you get none. So quit acting all butthurt because he called you a bad name.

  239. 239
    joe from Lowell says:

    Believing that Rahm is behind RAHM-IS-GREAT stories is “skepticism”

    No, considering that Rahm might be behind these stories is skepticism. (not sure what the scare quotes are about).

    Concluding that Rahm is behind them, or that Obama is behind them, is not skepticism. Skepticism is a quest for more evidence, and an unwillingness to believe a theory without solid evidence.

    It’s not absurd to postulate that a Washington figure could be fluffing himself anonymously to the press, but when good counter-arguments are raised, a skeptic doesn’t dismiss them on the grounds that those making them are a certain “kind of people.”

    And those are actual quotation marks, because that’s a quote.

  240. 240

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Well I acknowledged that my speculation was based on nothing more than having seen basically this same thing play out myself before. I have no idea if that’s right or not, and I’m not spinning wild conspiracy theories about what sort of messaging strategy politicians are playing because of this. As for Cole, if you want to apply the same criticism to him, feel free. I think he’s mostly right that Rahm is hurt if the perception is that he’s trashing Axelrod and Jarrett and telling any reporter in earshot that Obama’s an idiot for not listening to him more, but obviously that doesn’t mean he didn’t do it.

    And really, if you really believe the people who talked to Milbank or whomever were literally “Rahm’s friends,” you should probably spend a lot more time immersed in DC culture. Especially if you’re going to write about it. If it suits an ambitious reporters needs, you can easily be “friends” with someone you haven’t had more than 5 conversations with in your life.

  241. 241
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @John Cole: Well then, I am glad somebody gets this thread. The only thing I got from it is a big flapping headache. Navel gazing with an electron microscpope is how i’d describe it. But being an Obot cultist naif, I will just have to live it and with all the crazy people on the internet and just blend in the best I can.

  242. 242
  243. 243
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    MNEMOSYNE:

    If rahm has already been on the record, why go off it now?

    If I sit here and discuss a topic with 50 people who disagree with me, I’ll try to answer every argument worth answering, but some will fall through the cracks. Assuming that the ones that do are ones I can’t answer is silly.

    This one is easy.

    What Rahm told Charlie Savage is a small subset of what the anonymous pieces ended up saying. He was polite and restrained in talking to Savage on the record, making it clear that he had a few disagreements with some of the Terrorism-related decisions from DOJ.

    The fact that he’s willing to say those things on the record doesn’t mean he’s willing to go all-out and say: OBAMA IS FAILING BECAUSE HE DIDN’T LISTEN TO RAHM.

    That he told Savage those things on the record proves he wants it known that he’s opposed these things.

    That hardly means he’s not pushing the much more extreme RAHM-IS-RIGHT stories.

    I view his comments to Savage as evidence that he is behind those stories, because it proves he’s eager for it to be known that he was against these things — exactly the theme of the more extreme anonymous stories from Jane Mayer, Milbank and Horowitz.

    RAHM, ON THE RECORD: I disagreed with some of Holder’s decision.

    RAHM, ANONYMOUSLY: Obama is failing because he’s not listening to Rahm.

    It’s perfectly plausible that Rahm is willing to say the former on the record, but not the letter – more than plausible, it’s highly likely.

    Nobody has explained why — if these kinds of divisions are so lethal to Rahm – he said what he said to Savage on the record.

  244. 244
    sparky says:

    @John Cole: fine, then! be that way & win your own damn thread!

    /stomps off

  245. 245
    Elise says:

    It would be awesome if one could use logic when considering who is pushing the Rahm stories. The result of the Rahm garbage is more division among Democrats….therefore Rahm must be pushing the stories?

    That’s just stupid.

    Dividing Democrats benefits one group of people – Republicans. The stories are written by Republican shills. The stories undermine the President AND his Chief of Staff – whose job it is to push the President’s agenda and get legislation passed.

    So…Glenn comes to the conclusion that Rahm is pushing the stories himself?!

    Stupid.

    I don’t think it could be more obvious that Republicans were pushing the stories.

    And just FYI, Glenn – some of us always thought you were a hack. My opinion of you didn’t change on 1/20/09. It’s been the same for years.

  246. 246
    Parole Officer Burke says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: I’m still waiting for your full disclosure on any connection you have with Salon‘s tooth-cleaning advertisements. What are you hiding?

  247. 247
    sparky says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: oscars, dude. next time will be awesome.

    edit: actually PO burke’s was pretty alsome. and popups, too!

  248. 248
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Brien Jackson: And. I . don’t. care. Added to your comment , I think we solved this mystery.

  249. 249
    mo says:

    @Glenn Greenwald

    I never said, and don’t believe, that Obama is identical to Bush. That’s why it’s a good idea to use quotation marks for what people have actually written, not what you’ve invented in your head and then attributed to them.

    This has got to be one of the most hypocritical, least self aware statements I’ve ever seen. A very significant portion of the things you write, Glenn, are what you’ve invented in your head and attributed to people, including the “Obama worshippers” you regularly criticize. Also, your Very Serious, Village people. Oftentimes, you have valid points, but very rarely are the assertions you make supported by direct quotes. Your links often don’t lead to concrete, fact-based conclusions but require significant inference and a worldview in line with yours.

    Again, I think some of the time you’re very perceptive and thought-provoking but you definitely attribute motives to people that aren’t readily apparent in direct quotes.

  250. 250
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    JOE FROM LOWELL:

    No, considering that Rahm might be behind these stories is skepticism. (not sure what the scare quotes are about).

    That’s exactly what I did. I made clear from the start that what I was offering was nothing more than SPECULATION — my whole point was that anonymity prevents us from knowing.

    It’s exactly what John did (post title: “RAHM IS NOT THE SOURCE”). Does that sound like “a quest for more evidence,” or a strong belief he has about what happened?

    It’s not absurd to postulate that a Washington figure could be fluffing himself anonymously to the press, but when good counter-arguments are raised, a skeptic doesn’t dismiss them on the grounds that those making them are a certain “kind of people.”

    Roughly speaking, there are two kinds of people who have participated in this discussion:

    (1) those who angrily hurled insults and names at me from the start; and,

    (2) those who made substantive arguments about why they thought I was wrong (including John).

    The “those kinds of people” and Obama-worshiper commenters were clearly directed at the first category.

    I’ve now spent an hour here or so responding as substantively as I can to those in the second category (including John, both here and via email) .

    Don’t conflate my responses by pretending I’ve treated everyone the same.

  251. 251
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    ELISE:

    And just FYI, Glenn – some of us always thought you were a hack. My opinion of you didn’t change on 1/20/09. It’s been the same for years.

    Any examples pre-1/20/09 where you’ve said so, in comment sections or anywhere else?. Other than the time in July, 2008 when Obama blatantly violated his pledge to filibuster telecom immunity and I (and many others) criticized him for it, I never saw any such comments in the comment section of liberal blogs until 1/20/09. Weird how that happened.

  252. 252
    Elise says:

    @Mike Kay: GG isn’t a “fringe left winger” – he’s a Libertarian.

  253. 253
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: So precious. LOL. what a fucking wasted thread.

  254. 254
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    I view his comments to Savage as evidence that he is behind those stories, because it proves he’s eager for it to be known that he was against these things—exactly the theme of the more extreme anonymous stories from Jane Mayer, Milbank and Horowitz.
    __
    RAHM, ON THE RECORD: I disagreed with some of Holder’s decision.
    __
    RAHM, ANONYMOUSLY: Obama is failing because he’s not listening to Rahm.
    __
    It’s perfectly plausible that Rahm is willing to say the former on the record, but not the letter – more than plausible, it’s highly likely.

    It’s “highly likely” that Rahm will say the exact same thing both on the record and off the record? Because, what, it would be impossible to trace the anonymous quotes back to him because no one will have paid attention to his on-the-record statements?

    That’s what I’m really not getting here. What do you think Rahm gains by saying the exact same thing both on the record and off the record? Clearly he’s not retaining any kind of anonymity since he’s repeating statements that he already made publicly, so why bother doing it?

  255. 255
    IM says:

    Joe from Lowell,

    come on. You are better than that. (You are one of the few voices of reason in the wasteland that constitutes Yglesias comments, right?)

    Nobody forced anybody. But in your little story Cole argues calmly and then Greenwald did suddenly lose his mind. But of course there were a lot of quite idiotic attacks on Grennwald from the commenters interspersed calling him everything from truther to birther to rahmer to conspiracy theorist to dimwit. So he was provoked enough. Are you never provoked?

    I don’t think he is right on the merits by the way. But that is no reason to go overboard and discount everything he did write on Bush. And as far as I understand it, he is quite right about the civil rights record of Obama.

  256. 256
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    GG: “We can all only speculate, based on what seems most likely.“

    Spoken like a true New Age Journalist.

    Damn! I have no facts so I’ll just make shit up.

    Do you buy your straw by the bale or truckload? Go for volume, it’s cheaper.

  257. 257
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @NobodySpecial: You think he was addressing me? Hadn’t occured to me, and I don’t much care. I was responding to what someone else said. I don’t care for Greenwald’s writing style. YMMV, a chacun son gout and all that. There. We’ve discussed it, even though I don’t want to. You think expressing an opinion on a writer’s writing is “childish”? My god, the universities and book clubs and newspapers are full of “childish” people.

    Do I want GG’s respect? No, any more than he wants mine. He doesn’t know me, I don’t know him. If I were looking to fling poo at him and start a pissy blog fight, I would have posted my comment at Salon. I was responding to 1) the excerpt of GG’s update that Cole posted, which I find silly and Peggy Noonanish (I don’t say that to be unkind, it’s just my reaction); 2) what another poster said about reading Greenwald. I did, in fact, use some mild snark in doing so. I very humbly apologize for my lack of awareness of the new internet tradition of Broderian delicatesse.

  258. 258
    Zipperupus says:

    I think Glenn is playing 11D Chess. He writes an intelligent article about the damage anon sources do to journalism… Then, as a journalist, proves it by interpreting a piece of DC gossip in a manner that creates an artificial dialectic.

    Amazing, Glenn. I applaud you.

    Did you know, Glenn, that the tendency to transform subjective datum into objective categories is a sign of madness?

    And then, to attack those who point out the madness as delusional is projection?

    I suggest you take a deep, cleansing breath and recognize the dark tunnel you are wandering through. Otherwise, you will transform into Ignatius Reilly.

  259. 259

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    Nobody has explained why—if these kinds of divisions are so lethal to Rahm – he said what he said to Savage on the record.

    I think your larger point here is ok, but this one is, well, easy. If Rahm is going on the record, then presumably Obama is ok with it. Why? I don’t know. Maybe it has to do with positioning, or maybe they just want to make it known that there’s disagreement within the administration. Either way, that’s much different than anonymously trashing other senior staff and telling reporters the President is failing because he won’t listen to you.

  260. 260
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    MNEMOSYNE:

    It’s “highly likely” that Rahm will say the exact same thing both on the record and off the record?

    It wasn’t the same thing – not even close. What he said to Savage was a tiny subset of what Milbank, Mayer and Horowitz all said. I explained that above.

    To Savage: I disagree with a few decisions that came from DOJ.

    Horowitz/Milbank: Obama is failing because he hasn’t listened to Rahm on health care, governing, Terorism, and Obama’s political survival depends on listening more to Rahm.

    You really think those are “the same exact thing”?

  261. 261
    joe from Lowell says:

    Nobody has explained why—if these kinds of divisions are so lethal to Rahm – he said what he said to Savage on the record.

    Actually, we’ve explained it several times, but ok, I’ll explain it again:

    The existence of those divisions isn’t lethal to Rahm. The perception that Rahm is anonymously dishing on Obama is deadly to him.

    Making those statements in the open to the press creates the impressions that there are divisions. Not lethal.

    Making those statements in the open to the press and then anonymously dishing on the president creates the impression that Obama is a backstabbing, self-serving, disloyal hack.

    I find it very hard to believe that Rahm Emmanuel would set himself up to look that bad by being an anonymous source for those stories after having already said somewhat-similar things openly. I find it hard to believe he would make it so easy to trace it back to himself.

  262. 262
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    ELISE

    GG isn’t a “fringe left winger” – he’s a Libertarian.

    Could you please notify the libertarians, the Right, and virtually every newspaper and magazine in the country, all of whom invariably refer to me as “liberal,” “leftist,” “far leftists” and “progressive”? Thanks.

  263. 263
    Glenn Greenwald says:

    I need to leave – thanks to those who disagreed substantively.

  264. 264
    joe from Lowell says:

    That’s exactly what I did. I made clear from the start that what I was offering was nothing more than SPECULATION —my whole point was that anonymity prevents us from knowing.

    When you responded as you did to those who doubted your conclusion, you went further than treating this as speculation.

    If it’s just speculation, why are those who speculate differently evil and cult-like?

  265. 265
    Elise says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Believe it or not, I don’t spend a lot of time commenting about you and I never understood why anyone else did either. I’m not into hero worship of journalists or bloggers. No one is right 100% of the time.

    I’m wondering why you have this obsession with Rahm. I mean, I know you don’t want HCR to pass, so obviously you’re not going to focus your time on that, but I do find it curious that you spend so much of your time trying to attack Democrats – considering it’s Republicans that are the source of the problem for many of the issues you’re writing about.

  266. 266
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    I need to leave – thanks to those who disagreed substantively.

    Oh, it weren’t nothin’ really. Cole summed it up early on. “nuts”

  267. 267
    Zipperupus says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    It wasn’t a secret. You were paid a salary in order to help court primary opponents. You are claiming the credit for Brian Halter. During that time before this, however, your PAC was a dead apace that offered contrributors no idea how their money was spent outside of a few operative’s paychecks.

    Personally, I speculate that the update to your PAC’s web site was in part due to the accusations of malfeasance by your supporters. But I must be too deluded by Rahmbama to speculate properly. I defer to your superior incorruptible judgment on this and all other matters.

  268. 268
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    I find it very hard to believe that Rahm Emmanuel would set himself up to look that bad by being an anonymous source for those stories

    A subset of the sources was described by Horowitz as “allies” of Emanuel. Assuming this is correct either Emanuel is speaking self-servingly through “allies” or the President’s COS has really shitty taste in “allies”.

    Even if Emanuel is blameless in this sourcing matter it would then be clear that the Administration has lost control of messaging with the DC press corps, which wouldn’t look good for Rahm either.

  269. 269
    Xenos says:

    @shep:

    No, Rahm and Obama are terrified that they’re losing the liberal base, for good reason, obviously. This is just an attempt to place the stink on Rahm for the policies they hate. C’mon, this isn’t rocket science.

    Exactly – although it is Holder who is being set up to take blame, too. Meanwhile, they allow for, and control, the rumors of dissent. Big scandal: Washington’s biggest hippie-puncher punches a hippie.

    In this case, Obama appointed an AG who can be trusted to be fairly apolitical and jealous of the independence of his department. Now Obama gets some flack about the civilian trials of terrorists so he lets his political chief mutter about how crappy it is that Holder is not swaying to popular pressure.

    Obama gets to have it both ways (bonus Machiavelli points: if things blow up it can be painted as Holder’s mistake, not his), and the narrative changes from whatever crap Cheney is spouting off about to whether Rahm is out of line, whether politics should be driving these decisions, how Holder and brave Obama have to stick to the constitutional system even though it is so damn difficult and unpopular.

    Like a typical douchebag politician (edited for reduncancy), Obama is trying to eat his cake and have it too.

    I am still an Obot, though. He may be a douchebag, but he is my douchebag.

  270. 270
    eric says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: NO, the posters here disagreed with the two very limited options you proposed and offered other equally plausible speculative theories, most remaining agnostic as to the ultimate truth. I have not one clue who is the source(s) for the stories, and it would not surprise me if it was Rahm. Even if John is right and it looks bad for him, he can still be guilty of faulty political calculation. I could also see it is an Axelrod ally who has a totally different long term agenda form himself and the President. I just don’t know. eric

  271. 271
    No Joy in Mudville says:

    @joe from Lowell:

    I have to say, Glenn’s behavior since Obama’s election has made me retroactively question the stuff he wrote about Bush, and whether I was too credulous when I read it.

    I could certainly understand that attitude in general, but in the case of Bush isn’t there adequate substantiating evidence from multiple sources independent of Greenwald?

    No one should be an unquestioned-unquestionable source of information about anything or anyone, especially just because the source conforms to one’s own principles, opinions, and preconceived notions.

    I don’t agree with everything Greenwald has written (on any subject) and I would never believe him just because his subject was Bush or disbelieve him just because his subject is Obama. But I don’t think that people who think that way are a null set (by any stretch of the imagination) here at Balloon Juice.

  272. 272
    Cedwyn says:

    mmmm….rahmentia!

  273. 273
    slackjawedgawker says:

    Wow. Threads about/involving Glenn really tend to bring out the assholes. Can someone please remind me who it was that has the pie filter? Was it cleek? Mike Kay _must_ be a troll. And Stuck, you are much more enjoyable to read when you are not obsessively bullying people – often preemptively – who dare express a differing point of view.

    Glenn and John have an honest disagreement. Reading Mike, Stuck, and Joe, you’d think those weren’t allowed here anymore. That seems to be the point of about 90% of their posts.

  274. 274
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Wow, 270 comments and no mention of Hamsher. That has to be some sorta record for you retards.

  275. 275
    Xenos says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: I think any Rahm-based pissup is always implicitly about the firebaggers, no? It hardly bears mentioning any more.

  276. 276
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    Use the Find function again but this time search for “Hamster”. ;)

  277. 277
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @slackjawedgawker:

    Actually, i thought I was behaving myself pretty well in this thread. You must have skimmed right over Mr. Greenwalds puke funnel of insults there sparky. And why should I care what you think? I can dish it out, but take it too. How enjoyable a read was this?

  278. 278
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @slackjawedgawker:

    Reading Mike, Stuck, and Joe, you’d think those weren’t allowed here anymore. That seems to be the point of about 90% of their posts.

    Hey Cole, we got a sensitive flower here. Bring out the fainting hankies.

  279. 279
    batgirl says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Actually that is the only thing Rahm is on the record with — military tribunals. All the rest is anonymous sources.

    And your response to Sly was totally uncalled for. “revering Obama” WTF! Anyone who disagrees with you is an O-bot. Not any way to have a real conversation. Nor does Sly’s reasoned response to you deserve any of that bs.

    My disappointments are large and real with Obama (and expected, welcome to politics). I regularly contact the WH to let them know as well as my congressional reps. But, hey, I’m also damn glad he is our President. The Supreme Court right now could have another Roberts or Scalia.

    I don’t know WTF is going on with these Rahm pieces and everyone’s conjecture here is as good as yours. But just because someone doesn’t buy into your theories and questions them, doesn’t make them O-bots.

    Or, fuck, maybe it does. Then I will call myself an O-Bot happily. Let me know when you get your pony. (Go Kucinich!)

    Funny thing is that I’ll continue to read you because when you are not talking about Obama you say some very smart things. However, I’ll do just the opposite. You call me an O-Bot and I’ll say that you have Obama Derangement Syndrome. My guess is that we are both much more complex that.

  280. 280
    Mahakali Overdrive says:

    My God, thank you for the reality check, John Cole. It’s nice to see hang around your haven of Rahmentia-free sanity island on the net, only a few loose coconuts tossing about, it would seem. A-men, because I’ve been saying this particular meme is batshit fucking crazy for weeks (mainly to Cenk Ugyer, who’s generally too high on something both ill-toward and illicit while posting to make heads or tails of what I’ve typed about his own hideous case of Rahm-it-is).

    Have you ever tried to kill a foot-long millipede? Well, it sort of makes a horrible screaming noise at you as you kill it piece by piece, its legs splayed out like zombified eyelashes blinking a thousand blinks, strange-colored blood spitting and spilling all over the beast’s foot-long scales.

    At any rate, that’s what it’s like to kill a millipede. It takes a while, too. And you should probably use something quite heavy to accomplish this task.

  281. 281
    batgirl says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck: Did he actually ever respond reasonably to those that disagreed with him? He seemed to respond like a 7 year old with his fingers in his ears screaming “You’re an Obot. You’re an Obot. I don’t have to listen to you.”

  282. 282
    tyrese says:

    Rahm may be a lot of things, but he is not a blithering idiot, and I’d bet anything he hates these stories as much as Rahm.

    Sentence fail.

  283. 283
    Something Fabulous says:

    @Cat Lady: Hey, Cat Lady! 280 and counting! Come claim your prize!

  284. 284
    Mahakali Overdrive says:

    @ Glenn Greenwald:

    If Elise doesn’t take up that task, you might have some other takers. Wake me up when you’re a liberal-like-your-girl-Friday, because speculation is so very boring when you leave a rather prescient paper trail.

    Zzz…

  285. 285
    Mike Kay says:

    Glenn Greenwald, dishonest left-wing hack, or complete moron?

    I vote both. And how much better would our media be if everytime someone was as bad as Greenwald or his doppleganger Liz Cheney, someone like Cole would call them on it?

  286. 286
    slackjawedgawker says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    True to form, Stuck responds to one post he doesn’t like with two of his own. What he can’t silence, he can drown out with voluminous posting.

    I agree with a decent amount of what you’ve written on even this thread, but shit like this:

    “You are a real stinker sir, yes you are.”

    and this:

    “It makes about as much sense as anything else we get from the netroot fever swamp.”

    just clog up the thread.

  287. 287
    John Cole says:

    You guys are pretty odd. If it isn’t clear by now, I like and respect Glenn. I email him all the time, think he is interesting and inciteful, and even emailed him tonight that I disagreed with him.

    You do know you can disagree with someone and still like them and think they are right on other things?

  288. 288
    Corner Stone says:

    @John Cole: Give it up Cole. These are your people.

  289. 289
    slackjawedgawker says:

    @John Cole:

    “inciteful”

    Nicely done.

  290. 290
    Cat Lady says:

    @Something Fabulous:

    The Janestown bunch may still show up. The night’s still young.

  291. 291
    JasonF says:

    I’m roughly halfway through the thread, so forgive me if this has been covered, but I am absolutely astonished that Glenn is putting so much weight on the Charlie Savage interview. That interview very clearly furthered the administration’s purposes — by floating a trial balloon and laying groundwork for moving KSM’s trial from an Article III court to a military tribunal. If the administration is considering backing off on the decision to try KSM in a civilian court, it makes perfect sense for Emanuel to make a statement that says, in effect “there were some voices in the administration going one way and some going the other, and the voices going the one way wound up winning, but the voices going the other way had some legitimate arguments.” That is a classic “We are about to reverse our previous decision” statement. But the Savage statement is a far cry from the anonymous “Obama keeps fucking everything up because he’s ignoring Rahm’s advice” statements. Trying to conflate the two seems to elide some important and basic differences and ignores a major aspect of the way things are done in Washington.

    OK, now to go back to catching up on my reading!

  292. 292
    Joseph Nobles says:

    I’m with Greenwald on this one, mostly. I think the White House is falling on its sword to get Republican support back to close Guantanamo while providing political cover for reversing course on military tribunals. They’re happy enough to be seen as this divided in order to get those things done.

    Such a reversal was always going to be seen as “Rahm-was-right.” All Glenn is saying with his option 2 is that the White House decided to use that obvious takeaway to their advantage.

  293. 293
    Emma says:

    John: Yes, I can. I can disagree with all sorts of folks and not think they’re offensive little twits. However, I draw at the line at a person whose argument seems to be : if you disagree with me, you’re a slave to your God Obama and I will consider you beneath my high and mighty intellect.

    I understand both your arguments and I have no way of establishing which one is true, although I lean to your opinion and not his. But it seems to me that of the two, only Mr. Greenwald demands agreement upon penalty of insult.

  294. 294
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @slackjawedgawker: You said I bullyed people. Does that mean you get to say what you want about me and I can’t respond.

    And the examples you listed about my alleged meanness are laughable. Clearly, not up to my usual snark and mild as can be.

    just clog up the thread.

    Again, who the fuck are you to decide what clogs up a thread? I was responding to being called a “cultist” and a laundry list of other insults that you don’t mention from GG./ Why is that?

    And furthermore whiny little brats like You and dishonest hacks like Greenwald can go fuck both yourselves with a rusty pitchfork. The only reason I didn’t get that explicit earlier, is for some reason Cole respects this lying jackass watb. I don’t. Now that’s typical Stuck.

  295. 295
    Tonal Crow says:

    @Mike Kay: Better trolls, please.

  296. 296
    hypusine says:

    having read most of the comments here, I find something critical missing: an exhaustive list of the subtext: cuisine bono?

    1. Rahm has been covered. John’s argument is compelling if one assumes that he values how others view his service to the Administration. Glenn thinks he doesn’t as much as he values how DC sees him. the truth can’t be easily known. So, whatever.

    2. The DC press. To the extent that wonk traffic drives traffic or reputations surely. But their having made this up seems unlikely.

    3. The Administration itself. Perhaps this burnishes Villager credentials. Sure, but at the expense of the precious “unified front” image. Is there something about this narrative that outweighs maintaining that image? I don’t see it.

    4. The establishment who becomes vindicated. Sure, but who is carrying this story to the press and who if anyone approved its transmission?

    5. Republicans who get to run with a time honored -and not always ninaccurate- narrative of Dems in disarray. Especially positive regarding a decently popular Administration they would like to weaken.

    Anyone else?

    Side note: the ad hominem attack is against Glenn are childish and pointless. Please stick to facts and logic based criticisms. Otherwise you are just spewing noise. Thanks in advance.

  297. 297
    Dave says:

    Don’t know why Glenn thinks his worst enemies are Democrats without any actual power. What, if Democratic voters started (continued) to write Obama off, everything would be lefty peachy?

    If you dislike Obama as a matter of course, the only place to go is to tea parties. …Which explains some things.

  298. 298
    Elise says:

    @John Cole: I actually can’t remember the last time I thought Glenn Greenwald was right about anything.

    My real problem with him is his lack of credibility. He raised money for his PAC – claiming that he didn’t get money from it – while he was taking thousands of dollars a month from those donations. No disclosure.

  299. 299
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @batgirl:

    No, he did not. And last time he was here with the bullshit about the climate scientist, I asked him a simple question about why he started his dumb attack article claiming Obama was corrupt, by asserting that the fact that the guy and Obama never made public his arrangement. When in fact they did, at least once. Just a simple question he would not answer, and it took March Wheeler to finally come by and answer it. And only then after I requested a number of times.

    These people have agendas, and part of it, the big part, is keeping their followers in red meat, that largely dried up after Bush left. So they parse, conflate, and just make shit up to keep the libtard outrage machine in high gear to perpetuate their existence on the web, and their prosperity.

    They are mixing personal business with partisan politics and calling it honest advocacy, and claiming exemption from ridicule because they claim to be dems supporting the dem president. Bullshit a thousand goddamn times and I am sick and tired of it. And this horseshit thread on horseshit allegations is a perfect example of what I;m talking about.

  300. 300
    Mnemosyne says:

    Personally, my prime suspect for these quotes is Marshall Whittmann. He always seems to be the favorite “anonymous Democrat” when it comes to attacking Democrats.

  301. 301
    Tonal Crow says:

    @Dave: Is Greenwald really urging voters to “write Obama off”? Or to become angry enough to demand that he find his balls and really fight the GOP fearmongers? From http://www.salon.com/news/opin.....index.html :

    For years, Democrats have failed to grasp the fact that they are perceived as “weak” not because of any specific policies, but because they are perceived — rightly — to believe in nothing (or at least nothing that they claim to believe). It is hard to imagine any act that could more strongly bolster that perception than to watch Barack Obama — yet again — scamper away from his own claimed principles all because the GOP is saying some mean things about him.

    Yeah, it’s over the top (most Democrats have some sincerely-held beliefs) but the thrust is dead-center: stand up and fight!

  302. 302
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    This is typical Washington DC parlor gaming. It means nothing in the real world. Who knows who the sources are, and who should care as long as they remain anonymous. And the inanity of it all is the fact all these articles had competing messages that were polar opposite of one another. One that the reason things are screwed up is that obama wasn’t listening to Rahm enough, the others he was listening too much to Rahm. I no longer trust the DC media on pure political goings on in DC. There are some good print reporters on things like national security, but the nut picking he said she said stuff is just not worth responding to, and should be summarily dismissed as pol soap opera. It has nothing to do with anything of substance imo.

  303. 303

    I’ve been reading for a while but this is my first comment here. JC has been fab these last couple months, I haven’t read a Cole article I didn’t like. Does that make me a John Cole bot?

    Glenn: I don’t read your stuff, I hope it’s better than this comment section has been. I do like the Obama photo posts, I still marvel at the fact that this man and his family are in the White House. Amazing! Still, if I thought he was slacking or lacking I’d speak right up. So far I haven’t except for my disagreement with his Afghan troop surge and his excessive push for bipartisanship. I put myself in his shoes, I look at the conservative Senate he’s up against. People have a good laugh with the 41 vote majority thing, but really there is at least a 55 vote majority of R’s and moderate or captured Ds. Add on top of that, most of the Progressive agenda is a finger in the eye of rich and powerful corporations. It’s not the type of stuff that’s easy to get done. Bush had the status quo at his back, I didn’t and don’t expect Obama to be able to push nearly as much of his preference through. It’s not gonna happen without a massive social movement or an expansion of executive power.

  304. 304
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @John Cole: “I email him all the time, think he is interesting and inciteful, and even emailed him tonight that I disagreed with him.”

    Not actually a word but if it was then I would agree with you. :)

    @JasonF:

    Basing an argument in an article on speculation because of the musings the subject has given in one unrelated interview means that it proves the point. Or something like that.

    GG and his type seem to think Rahm’s plan is:

    1: Diss Obama and make him look weak.
    2. ?????
    3> Profit!

    Somehow this makes sense to them. Then they back this up with proof that since Rahm hasn’t come out and denied it then it must be true. These suckers are the types who think a question like Have you stopped beating your wife?  is a good and honest question to ask someone. No matter what Rahm said or did they would find some convoluted reasoning that would prove he was lying. Again!

  305. 305
    John says:

    A subset of the sources was described by Horowitz as “allies” of Emanuel. Assuming this is correct either Emanuel is speaking self-servingly through “allies” or the President’s COS has really shitty taste in “allies”.

    They are Emanuel’s allies according to whom? Surely there is the strong possibility that these are “distant hangers on claiming to Emanuel’s allies in order for their whining to seem more newsworthy for idiots like Dana Milbank”?

    You do know you can disagree with someone and still like them and think they are right on other things?

    Of course. I think most of the rest of us just don’t like Glenn Greenwald or think he is right about other things.

    So here’s the beginning of Greenwald’s first post in this thread:

    Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters: “Gosh, I used to really like Bush Critic X – until January 20, 2009, when Bush Critic X began making the same critiques about Barack Obama. Then my opinion about Bush Critic’s X character and intellect suddenly changed totally for reasons I can’t quite figure out.”

    So he basically starts off by accusing everyone who disagrees with him of being an Obama-worshiping hypocrite.

    Basically, I have no respect for any supposedly “liberal” commenter who addresses any disagreement with his conclusions by accusing the people who disagree with him of being part of an “Obama Cult”, an idea which basically comes straight out of tea-party/right wing bullshit.

    For the record, I’ve never much cared for Greenwald. I always thought he was pompous, humorless, and long-winded, and generally ignored his posts except when other blogs I read linked to him. For a while he was so highly praised by people I respect that I tried to get into him, but I quickly gave up. When Greenwald was mostly arguing subjects along the lines of “Bush is terrible,” in spite of my general dislike for him, I didn’t really care, because, you know, I wasn’t going to spend a lot of time arguing with somebody who was attacking Bush, and I generally avoided his stuff anyway.

    I’ll admit that once he started attacking Obama, I took more notice, and that this is because, you know, I like Obama and tend to try to give him the benefit of the doubt. Because of that, I looked more closely at Greenwald’s arguments, and I found a lot of them to be wanting. So, sure, I’ve examined his comments about Obama more carefully than the ones about Bush. But I wasn’t simply rejecting out of hand anything negative about Obama. I’m perfectly happy to criticize Obama in a lot of ways – he’s been disappointing on civil liberties; I think he made some tactical mistakes in dealing with Congress on health care, especially the whole “let’s allow Max Baucus to delay this thing for months while he negotiates fruitlessly with Republicans” business; I thought the immediate response to the Brown victory was pathetic. But I still tend to think that, for the most part, Obama is doing what he can, within what he considers realistic political limits, to undo the damage of the Bush years and push forward with pursuing traditional Democratic goals in domestic policy. I may disagree with him here and there, but so far I’ve seen nothing to lead me to the view that he’s some kind of monstrous wolf in sheep’s clothing who really desires nothing more than to follow the lead of Joe Lieberman on everything.

    Apparently this makes me a member of the “Obama cult”. I find this insulting and obnoxious. It’s one thing to disagree with my assessment and hold a more skeptical view of Obama’s actions than I do. It’s quite another to say that those disagreements arise because I’m incapable of critical thinking and am, in fact, a cult-like worshipper of authority. When anonymous trolls in blog comments do this, I think they’re assholes. When Jane Hamsher does this, I think she’s an asshole. And since I kind of thought Glenn Greenwald was an asshole before, I’m certainly going to think he’s an asshole, too, when he does the same thing.

    Can anyone explain to me how Greenwald is substantively any better than asshole Yglesias commenters like Petey and Don Williams and the like? His posts in this thread are virtually indistinguishable from those of those borderline insane jerks. Why am I supposed to take him seriously again? Because his posts are really long?

  306. 306
    Dave says:

    @Tonal Crow: I get the point that Democrats need balls, but people who read Glenn know that already. Hell, many Democratic voters know that already. By all means, let’s have an antagonistic left, someday.

    Glenn’s choice of target, though–namely, Democratic voters–and his rhetoric toward them is fucking ridiculous. Ordinary Obama supporting voters are not responsible for his centrism or for Rahm stories in the newspaper, but Glenn pretends that people putting up Obama pictures on DKos are the worst people in the world. It sucks because on the one hand, I’m with Glenn on the media critique, but on the other hand, he can go fuck himself, cos what the fuck am I supposed to do about it?

  307. 307
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @John:

    Well said Obot John. This fellow Obot wholeheartedly agrees with you. :)

  308. 308
    FlipYrWhig says:

    Aw, I missed the whole thing, and we were even blessed to have an audience with Pope Glenn himself. Note how the only conceivable explanation for disagreeing with His Holiness is delusional power-worship. Again. And fuck Rahm Emanuel, the biggest non-story since Octomom. Why anyone cares about who’s giving quotes to behind-the-scenes views of the advisers to the President is beyond me.

  309. 309
    Cedwyn says:

    @ajr22:

    Glenn your a supporter of civil and human rights no matter who is in office, and I respect you for it. However at what point is it counter productive to your goals. Is attacking Obama and hurting him for his lack of action going to achieve what you want? Maybe, but probably not

    i think you’re making assumptions about what the goals and desires are here.

    ; P

  310. 310
    mclaren says:

    Wow. The hate puppets are dancing convulsively tonight, shrieking crazed lies about Glenn Greenwald, of all people. I’m impressed. Especially the kook who proclaimed that

    [Glenn Greenwald] now has glass in his head, with a dem in the WH, and his speculation is right around where the Truthers live.

    (General Crackpot Stuck, yet another sociopathic compulsive liar who can’t manage to actually give his real name because he’s too embarrassed by the dementia he spouts. What, pray tell, does “he now has glass in his head” mean? A glass eye? A wine goblet for a brain? What? That doesn’t even make sense. But of course rational people long ago gave up any hope that “General Stuck,” or whatever his name really is, would make sense.)

    and I especially liked this gem:

    I have to say, Glenn’s behavior since Obama’s election has made me retroactively question the stuff he wrote about Bush, and whether I was too credulous when I read it.

    Absolutely. That whole Iraq invasion thing in 2003 was just a nasty rumor. Not a bit of truth to it at all.

    You have to read the comments by the kooks and cranks and crackpots on this forum and gape open-mouthed, aghast in stupefied disbelief. It’s almost impossible to credit that live human beings could be stupid enough and crazy enough to spout the kind of gibberish we’ve been hearing all night.

    Naturally, Greenwald’s statements that Obama has cemented and reinforced Bush’s unconstitutional sociopathies are so solidly based on fact that only kooks could dispute them. The latest evidence? Obama quietly reauthorized the USA Treason Act (misnamed the USA Patriot Act) after he campaigned vociferously on rescinding and nullifying it; and, just yesterday, the backpedaling by Obama to agree to military commission trials for KSM after Obama spent many months arguing vehmently for civilian trials for the Gitmo terror suspects, and after he criticized the Bush people (and quite correctly, too) for setting up phony military show trials outside the normal judicial system.

    You kooks don’t seem to recall that the former chief prosecutor at the Guantanamo military commission trials resigned in protest back in 2008 because of the grotesque unfairness and injustice of those show trials. This is not some hippy, folks — this is the chief prosecutor assigned by the JAG office to the Gitmo trials. And he started out as a gung-ho enthusiastic supporter of the military commission system but quickly became so disillusioned by the Stalinist show-trial nature of these sham drumhead rigged military courts that he found it impossible to continue as prosecutor and resigned in protest.

    Glenn Greenwald doesn’t cite well-documented facts this these because, I’m guessing, he assumes that you people are knowledgeable enough to be aware of these facts. But of course you people are ignorant as well as demented, so Glenn should have known you’re clueless about the degree to which Obama has embraced and extended Bush’s unconstitutional violations of the Bill of Rights, just as you people are clueless about the extent of probable conniving and self-dealing and backstabbing inside the Obama White House.

    Darrel J. Vandeveld was in despair. The hard-nosed lieutenant colonel in the Army Reserve, a self-described conformist praised by his superiors for his bravery in Iraq, had lost faith in the Guantanamo Bay war crimes tribunals in which he was a prosecutor. (..)

    Vandeveld is at least the fourth prosecutor to resign under protest. Questions about the fairness of the tribunals have been raised by the very people charged with conducting them, according to legal experts, human rights observers and current and former military officials.

    Vandeveld’s claims are particularly explosive.

    In a declaration and subsequent testimony, he said the U.S. government was not providing defense lawyers with the evidence it had against their clients, including exculpatory information — material considered helpful to the defense.

    Source: Los Angeles Times article collection 12 October 2008.

    These are the rigged show trials operating outside the normal judicial system which Obama has decided to continue, in defiance of Obama’s own promise and contrary to all of Obama’s previous claims about how he disagreed with the Bush administration’s bending and twisting of the law to avoid due process.

    Also see “Guantanamo Prosecutor Quits, Says Evidence Was Withheld.” Source: Washington Post article, 25 September 2008.

    For evidence that Obama has reversed course, see “Obama advisers set to recommend military tribunals for alleged 9/11 plotters.” Source: Washington Post article 5 march 2010.

    Now compare with the headline “Obama criticizes military prosecution of 6 detainees — he prefers civilian trials…” from the San Francisco Chronicle, 13 February 2008.

    Compare Obama’s present position with his position in the debates against McCain:

    Barack Obama, on the other hand, recognized that the struggle to bring Hamdan to trial “underscores the dangerous flaws in the administration’s legal framework.” Obama rejects McCain’s willingness to detain people for years before giving them an unfair hearing, and reminds us that the path to justice is enshrined in our Constitution… (..)

    “Obama supports shutting down the Guantanamo prison and says U.S. civilian courts and the traditional military courts-martial system can handle detainee trials.

    From TalkLeft, 6 August 2008.

    The kooks and cranks and crackpots who’ve crawled out of the woodwork on this forum to launch infantile name-calling attacks on Glenn Greenwald have permanently covered themselves with such shame that no serious person can view this forum as credible henceforth. Geenwald’s statements of documented fact about Obama’s embrace of the Bush administration’s unconstitutional attacks on the Bill of Rights have been met with nothing but shrill small crackpots hurling sh*t in the frantic hope that some of it sticks.

    No facts to counter Greenwald’s evidence. No logic to rebut Greenwald’s conclusions. Nothing but name-calling and infantile hysteria.

    FACT: Obama has reversed himself again and again to deliberately embrace and extend the Bush-era attacks on due process and the Bill of Rights.

    FACT: When Glenn Greenwald has pointed this out as hard cold evidence that Obama is willing to betray his own party and turn his back on his own people and stab his supporters in the back for temporary political advantage, the festering community of tin-foil-hat wearers on this forum went berserk, hysterically hurling mud at Greenwald — but never offering a single documented fact to rebut any of Greenwald’s statements.

    LOGICAL CONCLUSION: Greenwald seems entirely sensible when he concludes that Obama has shown such nonchalance about betraying and turning his back on his own supporters and his own people so often that it cannot come as any great surprise to any sentient observer that Obama might once again be stabbing his own people in the back and turning his back on them…except this time the people might be within Obama’s innermost circle. Namely, Rahm Emanuel.

    Of course, this use of facts and logic proves so alien to the kooks and cranks and crackpots who infest this forum that pointing this stuff out is like trying to explain calculus to Tunch the cat.

    Keep on jumping up and down and shrieking envenomed verbal abuse at Glenn Greenwald claiming that his statement of these documented facts “is right around where the truthers live.” Hearing this kind of horsesh*t from you peoples’ mouths provides further hard evidence to those of us in the reality-based community that most of you are a bunch of cranks who belong on public access TV with the guys gibbering about how the earth is hollow and full of grey reptoids.

  311. 311
    gbear says:

    @mclaren: TLDR.

  312. 312
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    For evidence that Obama has reversed course, see “Obama advisers set to recommend military tribunals for alleged 9/11 plotters.” Source: Washington Post article 5 march 2010.

    Psst. You realize that no reversal has been announced, right? That all we have so far is a rumor, right?

    I mean, I know you have a magical crystal ball that allows you to see every bad thing that Obama will do at some point in the future, but the rest of us just see you ranting crazily about things that haven’t actually happened.

  313. 313
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @mclaren: I see you slipped your straightjacket again there mclaren. I’m sure Greenwald is tickled pink to have whackjob you as an ally.

  314. 314
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    The kooks and cranks and crackpots who’ve crawled out of the woodwork on this forum to launch infantile name-calling attacks on Glenn Greenwald have permanently covered themselves with such shame that no serious person can view this forum as credible henceforth.

    “henceforth”?

  315. 315
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Mnemosyne: Almost sounds like he”s hoping Obama will reverse Holder. They just can’t contain their joy for things that haven’t happened yet.

  316. 316
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    No facts to counter Greenwald’s evidence. No logic to rebut Greenwald’s conclusions

    I haven’t seen any evidence whatsoever that any fact has been proffered on this gawd awful thread. From anybody.

  317. 317
    Mnemosyne says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    I’m just waiting for mclaren to work the National Nurses United editorial from HuffPo into this thread. If he doesn’t, it will be the first time.

  318. 318
    mclaren says:

    @General Fake Name Who-Cares-What: Do you have any rebuttal at all to my facts and logic other than calling me mentally ill?

    Anything?

    Anything at all? Is that your whole shtick, the sum and substance of your arguments — to call anyone who cites inconvenient facts and uses devastating logic against you “insane”?

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: henceforth – adverb from this point on.

    It seems important to stress that this forum boasted a great deal of credibility from 2005 to 2009. The commenters here, and John Cole himself, were among the most diligent in pointing out the sociopathic illegalilty and corruption of the Bush White House. Moreover, they did in the face of great deal of contrary messaging from the mainstream media, which back in 2005 had agreed on the inside-the-beltway consensus that the Bush people were Very Serious Very Competent People and Everything In America Was Going Great and their critics were Dirty F*cing Hippy traitors who were carping about trivialities and should not be taken seriously.

    However, now that Obama has shown himself to be duplicitious in his public statements and untrustworthy in keeping his campaign promises, it seems increasingly clear that the commenters on this site are not showing the same zeal for criticizing breaches of due process and violations of the constitution and general dishonesty on the part of the Chief Executive that they did when Bush occupied the Oval Office.

    Ergo, “henceforth.”

  319. 319
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Mnemosyne: Remember how some anonymous source had “a growing feeling” that overturning Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was going to be put on the back burner?

    I still think it’s funny to pop in to defend Greenwald by saying that the people he’s arguing with are “name-calling.” How soon did Greenwald fire off the first “Dear Leader”-style remark against people who characterized his argument in a way he didn’t appreciate? In his first comment.

    Gosh, I used to really like Bush Critic X – until January 20, 2009

    A comment which also has the virtue of presuming that by default everyone likes Glenn Greenwald. Insufferable.

  320. 320
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @mclaren:

    TLBT

    The kooks and cranks and crackpots who’ve crawled out of the woodwork on this forum to launch infantile name-calling attacks on Glenn Greenwald have permanently covered themselves with such shame that no serious person can view this forum as credible henceforth.

    GG came in swinging right from the beginning with the name calling but I am sure that you noticed that.

    Nice bullet points though. ;)

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    He has to strike a haughty tone so we will see that he is serious  about this, otherwise we would never take him seriously.

    Serious.

  321. 321

    ahahahaha
    I love it, “I hate you for calling me an Obot after I spent six months proudly proclaiming my Obotism.” Who says Republicans killed irony? It’s still dying…

  322. 322
    ricky says:

    Reading through this well after sombody floated the Kool
    Aid keg reminds me of the night I got to meet an administration official a few years after his fall from actual political power and academic grace for promotion of a disastrous war.

    At the time the war still raged and my possible participation
    either in the war or in exile was becoming more real. I was as earnest and detemined a critic as any I have seen here tonight. The former official was as self righteous, disparaging, disingenuos and dimissive a human as I have ever enountered. The host took me aside later and suggested his guest had no other choice. “For him to even entertain the possibility he could be wrong would leave him no alternative but suicide.”

    Tonight Glenn Greenwald in commentary reminded me of Walt Whitman Rostow in person.

  323. 323
    FlipYrWhig says:

    Can we get Matt Taibbi to make an appearance in this thread? How about Hamsher, Armando, and maybe Lambert Strether? Kind of embracing the flypaper theory?

  324. 324
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @mclaren: You present no facts knucklehead, just a lot of mouth breathing jibberish alleging Obama = Bush , or something like that. We;ve heard it all before around here. Alleging Rahm is sourcing articles attacking himself is just crazy, and that’s all it is.

  325. 325
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @mclaren: “It seems important to stress that this forum boasted a great deal of credibility from 2005 to 2009.”

    Wow, we have lost the mclaren Seal of Credibility. Time to close up shop here John, all has been lost. We are never going to recover from a devastating loss such as this.

    The helicopters are weeping.

  326. 326
    mclaren says:

    @General Crackpot Fake Name:

    haven’t seen any evidence whatsoever that any fact has been proffered on this gawd awful thread. From anybody.

    I cited the fact that Guanatamo’s chief prosecutor resigned from the military in protest over the unfairness of the military commissions.

    I cite the fact that four other Guantanamo prosecutors resigned for the same reason.

    I cited the fact that Barack Obama citicitized the military commission process for these reasons during the 2008 presidential campaign.

    I cited the fact that Barack Obama claimed during the 2008 presidential campaign that the civilian court system was adequate to handle terror trials.

    I cited the newspaper report which asserts that Obama’s advisor are set to recommend military commission tribunals for the Guantanamo detainees. This last is an unverified report, apparently sourced from inside the White House, but cannot yet be stated to be a fact.

    I then used these facts (along with the Washington Post report of Obama’s reversal on the military commissions) to show Barack Obama’s history of turning his back on his own people.

    I used this evidence to show that Barack Obama has a history of reversing his positions and stabbing his own people in the back, and that therefore it’s not a huge stretch to suppose that Obama might be throwing Rahm Emanuel under the bus — particularly if Obama is preparing to dump Emanuel for another chief of staff, as he is reported to be planning to do.

    Do you even read this forum, General Made-Up Fake Name? Or are you just a bot programmed to accuse people by rote of being mentally ill when they disagree with you?

  327. 327
    gbear says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Hamsher has minions to do that.

  328. 328
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher: What i hate are people coming here spinning the unknown and absurd into something worth reading or commenting on.

  329. 329
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    I cited the newspaper report which asserts that Obama’s advisor are set to recommend military commission tribunals for the Guantanamo detainees. This last is an unverified report, apparently sourced from inside the White House, but cannot yet be stated to be a fact.
    __
    I then used these facts (along with the Washington Post report of Obama’s reversal on the military commissions) to show Barack Obama’s history of turning his back on his own people.

    I mean, you’ve gotta love it. mclaren admits that he’s basing his entire criticism in this case on something that “cannot yet be stated to be a fact” and then claims in the very next paragraph that it’s a indisputable “fact” that proves his case.

    I have a feeling he’s a little shaky on what a “fact” is. Hint: it’s not something that you rilly rilly rilly want to be true so you’ll grab onto any rumor floating around that might possibly confirm it if you squint real hard. A fact is something that has actually happened.

  330. 330
    gbear says:

    @mclaren fake name: You cited TalkLeft. Nobody’s going to take you seriously.

  331. 331
    Cedwyn says:

    @IM:

    Nobody forced anybody. But in your little story Cole argues calmly and then Greenwald did suddenly lose his mind.

    But of course there were a lot of quite idiotic attacks on Grennwald from the commenters interspersed calling him everything from truther to birther to rahmer to conspiracy theorist to dimwit. So he was provoked enough. Are you never provoked?

    so your defense of glenn boils down to “but he started it!”? provoked, shmovoked…everybody still has to own their shit. but i’m guessing this assortment will be returned to sender.

  332. 332
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @mclaren: What if Obama decides _not_ to go with the military tribunal approach? Will that mean that he lives up to his promises, which will somehow mean something about Rahm Emanuel, who either is being thrown under the bus or throwing people under the bus or some sort of bus-related nefarious activity only Greenwald can detect or deter?

  333. 333
    Mike Kay says:

    @ricky: That’s a good take.

    Frankly, I see Greenwald as a mirror version of Liz Cheney.

  334. 334
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @mclaren: Military commissions have been used throughout history when accompanied with adequate due process. The fact that Bush turned them into kangaroo courts is not Obama’s fault, and if revised to offer that due process, then it should be acceptable to use them to try accused persons with. The supremes have already ruled on this. And for people captured over seas for alleged crimes not on American soil, then they are the only way to try those people. Our courts do not have jurisdiction in those cases. Otherwise, it is dems in congress that are forcing Obama to reconsider, which he has not yet made a decision, and you are attacking him for something he hasn’t done yet.

    As to the rest of your wanking on Obama = Bush, you are doing just what GG does and conflate obama not yet cleaning up Bush’s messes the way you and GG want with Obama committing the same crimes. Get back to me when you have solid evidence he is torturing people, or invading countries for no reason, or violating current federal law regarding wiretapping or any other brain farts from the idiot swamp.

  335. 335
    ricky says:

    @mclaren:

    How dare convulsively dancing hate puppets to act like kooks, cranks and crackpots and call anyone names.

  336. 336
    Joseph Nobles says:

    I’d also like to point out that Glenn’s comments about Obots from the outset was in a thread where his viewpoint was ridiculed as nuts and conspiratorial thinking by John Cole in the original post. Glenn and John are friends, and very likely they are ribbing each other good-heartedly. Those taking extreme umbrage at two friends mocking each other — isn’t that kind of silly?

  337. 337
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Cedwyn: I don’t care about the name calling or who started it. I am concerned with people building false memes on the unknown and presenting them as plausible, while in this case claiming Rahm Emmanuel is sourcing articles attacking himself. And then claiming they don’t do speculation, when that is exactly what they are doing.

  338. 338
    Mike Kay says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    I don’t think Hamsher would come here. She can’t ban people and erase non-adorning comments.

  339. 339
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Cedwyn: Have you ever seen Greenwald admit he was out on a limb, much less wrong? His whole blogging career is based on the premise that he is obviously correct about everything, immediately. That can play as impressive tenacity or as spectacular arrogance.

    Yes, he got dogpiled tonight. But IMHO he asks for it because he doesn’t really believe in dialogue. He just issues encyclicals.

  340. 340
    Comrade Kevin says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Bullshit. Your very first comment on this topic started out like this:

    Shorter Obama worshiper-commenters:

    You came here to call people names, and throw a petulant fit because some people disagreed with you.

  341. 341

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:
    This WH has behaved as it has. People speculate. You speculate. I think Rahm Emanuel is a DLC prick and thirty years ago would have been working the other side of the fence. Whether that is good or bad is a matter of POV.

    Greenwald answered and got kicked for it, I like and respect Greenwald but I don’t read him a lot because he uses too many words to make a point. He does stand on principle and he does try to look farther than immediate outcomes.

    I think Obama has fucked up seriously on some things, that isn’t the same as saying “same as Bush” but it can say “not different enough.”

    I told you I’m not a ‘bot of any sort and I’ve worked for a lot of politicians. I expect them to be politicians and I expect them to be short sighted and court approval where they shouldn’t. I expect they’ll make mistakes and need to be called on it. That is somehow attempting to destroy the Administration…

  342. 342
  343. 343
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Joseph Nobles:

    I’d also like to point out that Glenn’s comments about Obots from the outset was in a thread where his viewpoint was ridiculed as nuts and conspiratorial thinking by John Cole in the original post.

    I don’t remember what the topic was, but we’ve been through this before, where Greenwald stopped by and rapidly started unloading at the “Obots” who are blindly devoted to their “Dear Leader.” That didn’t look like good-natured ribbing between friends. It looked like an attempt to ignore any potential interlocutors who were not John. I assume that’s why there were so many potshots early in the thread: bad blood from that last go-round. (I think it was on the subject of the health care bill. There may have been others I missed.)

  344. 344
    Mike Kay says:

    @Chuck Butcher: If greenwald stands on principle why didn’t he vote for Nader or Cynthia McKinney or Bob Barr?

  345. 345
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne: Crawl back to the feet of your mentor Karl Rove for some remedial lessons — you haven’t yet mastered the art of the smear.

    Thanks for telling the flagrantly obvious lie “mclaren admits that he’s basing his entire criticism in this case on something that `cannot yet be stated to be a fact’ — you’ve done most of the heavy lifting of proving yourself an ignorant liar for me.

    My “entire criticism” is that Obama now has a history of turning his back on his supporters and betraying his own people.

    That doesn’t depend on one instance. It’s a repeated history that’s now part of the historical record.

    FACT: Obama campaigned on a public option for health care as an essential part of health care reform.

    FACT: Obama then declared that the public option in the senate health bill was not crucial.

    FACT: Obama criticized the Bush administration for kindapping terror suspects without charges or a trial or due process or habeas corpus during the presidential campaign as “unconstitutional.”

    FACT: Obama reversed course and, bizarrely and hypocritically, gave an incoherent speech in the capitol rotunda in which he then endorsed “preventive detention” of terror suspects — which means kidnapping terror suspects without charges or a trial or due process or habeas corpus.

    FACT: Obama campaigned on reforming our financial system and bringing transparency to Wall Street.

    FACT: Obama’s secretary of the Treasury, Tim Geithner, invoked anti-terror laws in a frantic effort to keep the details of the government’s bailout of Goldman Sachs secret.

    FACT: Obama repeatedly criticized the war on drugs during the campaign.

    FACT: Obama’s Attorney General, Eric Holder, has requested new laws increasing the criminal penalties for marijuana possession in order (he claims) to cripple the marijuana smuggling rackets which provide the income base for the Mexican drug cartels.

    FACT: Obama criticized the USA Patriot Act as unconstitutional and repeatedly urged that its provisions be amended to introduce civil liberties protections.

    FACT: Obama as president recently reauthorized the USA Patriot Act, leaving all its unconstitutional provisions fully intact.

    FACT: Obama crticized the Bush White House for its unconstitutional warrantless wiretapping.

    FACT: Even before he became president, Obama then did an about-face and acquiesced to the FISA cave-in which retroactively legalized the warrantless wiretapping even though it remains in direct violation of the fourth amendment of the constitution.

    FACT: Obama criticized the Bush White House’s extralegal practice of sending assassination teams overseas to murder foreign nationals without charges or a trial.

    FACT: Obama then appointed the head of the Pentagon’s extralegal assassination teams, the Joint Special Operations Command, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, and the overall military commander in Afghanistan, and gave the go-ahead for expanded use of extralegal special forces assassinations of foreign nationals throughout Afghanistan. The result, predictably, has been massive numbers of murders of innocent civilians in Afghanistan, including entire wedding parties of innocent bystanders and funerals of innocent bystanders.

    You really need to get together with your mentor Karl Rove, Mnemosyne. Your smear tactics need a lot of work.

    All these documented facts show Obama’s consistent pattern of betraying his own people and turning his back on his own supporters. Obama’s reversal on military commissions is just one example — there are literally hundreds of examples by now of Obama lying to his supporters and stabbing them in the back.

    Moreover, unless you’re so ginormously ignorant and such a conspiracy theorist that you actually believe that the Washington Post would run a story about how Obama is set to reverse course on the military commissions unless the White House itself had green-lighted such a story in order to float a trial balloon, you don’t have a ghost of a clue how Washington works. This is how it’s done — a “source close to the president” leaks what’s going to happen, the public debates it, supporters of the president defuse criticism with talking points, then when the announcement is made in the White House rose garden, it’s not longer controversial and the damage of reversing course and betraying your own people has been contained.

    You need to view those old Senator Joseph McCarthy videotapes again to see how it’s done, Mnemosyne. Right now, your smears aren’t even close to being credible. Go back to Karl Rove and ask him for some pointers. I’m sure he’ll be glad to help.

  346. 346
    ricky says:

    @Mike Kay:

    I never got to spend three hours in my faculty advisor’s living room with Liz Cheney. And Liz Cheney was not one of JFK and LBJ’s Best and Brightest. She was a piece of nepotism foisted on the State Department much as Paul Wolfowitz’s girlfriend was…a must hire with a made up job.

    I think Greewald would destroy Liz in an argument. He will never match Rostow in intellect, acheivement, or damage.
    But he basically has the same opinion of the odor of what emanates from his bowels. And complete contempt for those who thinks his, like the rest of ours, may possibly, even on the rarest of occaisions, stink.

  347. 347
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher: Greenwald came hear claiming Rahm could be sourcing articles attacking himself. That is just crazy. As are a lot of his conspiracy theories of late. And has been pointed out Greenwald comes right out of the gate with the cultist crap, or worship. That’s ok, we can take it and send some of it back. But then his supporters start the whining about unfair treatment and want us to entertain nutty premises to arguments and not call it bullshit. Sorry, not going to happen.

  348. 348
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Mike Kay: I think he has principles (and knowledge) when it comes to civil liberties. I think he’s only as knowledgeable as any of us random shmoes on every other topic, but he doesn’t admit that, and instead blusters and pontificates to obscure how when you get there, there’s so very little there there.

  349. 349

    @Mike Kay:
    You need a new schtick. Weak stuff. Maybe you’re actually smarter than you indicate…or not.

  350. 350
    Mike Kay says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    Greenwald came hear claiming Rahm could be sourcing articles attacking himself. That is just crazy

    I don’t know why more people don’t call this behavior for what it is — he’s weaving a conspiracy theory.

  351. 351
    ricky says:

    @mclaren:

    My “entire criticism” is that Obama now has a history of turning his back on his supporters and betraying his own people.

    I wonder why, with this history of backstabbing and betrayal,
    he commands such loyalty from so many. Is it really the KoolAid, do you think? If so, there is only one possible source for such a brew.

  352. 352
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    Again, you seem to be a little shaky on exactly what a “fact” is as compared to, say, a “policy position” or “an opinion” but, hey, don’t let that mar your little fantasy world. Has your doctor found the implant the CIA put in your head yet?

  353. 353
    Mike Kay says:

    @Chuck Butcher: so weak that you were unable to answer my question and instead tried to deflect with ad hominem attacks. In other words, since you were unable to provide a rebuttal, I broke your argument.

    Next!

  354. 354
    slightly_peeved says:

    Has anyone got any evidence of this rapid decline in support among his base? The polls show a small, steady decline from January 2009, but that’s pretty common for new presidents.

    I think the people who think Obama’s sitting down each day and going “We have to do something about my base! They’re running away!” are overestimating their importance a tad.

    But of course there were a lot of quite idiotic attacks on Grennwald from the commenters interspersed calling him everything from truther to birther to rahmer to conspiracy theorist to dimwit. So he was provoked enough. Are you never provoked?

    If Glenn Greenwald gets into angry arguments with anonymous people on the internet because they insult him, he is obviously Not Aware Of All Internet Traditions. In particular the one known as Trolling.

  355. 355
    Mike Kay says:

    @Mnemosyne: Oh no you didn’t!

  356. 356
    gbear says:

    (edit: deleted. bad link)

  357. 357
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @mclaren: Um, sometimes the point of the trial balloon is to see it get shot down. Not all rumors and anonymous sources are preliminary dissemination of already-made decisions.

  358. 358
    ricky says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    I am sorry, but many of us still hate Truman for not trying
    Jodl in U.S. District Court in Brooklyn.

  359. 359
    Mike Kay says:

    @mclaren:

    Dude, Captain Queeq just called, he wants his marbles back.

  360. 360
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @slightly_peeved: The last polling on that that I remember was 90% approval amongst rank and file dems nationwide. It set a record for first term presidents at this stage and support from their party members. And that was just after losing the seat in Mass.

  361. 361
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @gbear: Jeebus that was loud when I clicked. Caused me to swallow a little of my Cherry Flavored Skoal.

  362. 362
    ricky says:

    @slightly_peeved:

    I really think nice professional types like Greenwald should not venture alone onto the internet at night.

  363. 363
    mclaren says:

    @Mnemosyne: Thanks for abandoning your position and running away from your provably false claim that “my whole position” is based only one of Obama’s many decisions as president.

    Now that you’ve realized you’ve been caught in a lie, you’re backsliding to calling me mentally ill rather than trying to rebut any of my facts.

    It is a fact that Obama has repeatedly reversed his policy decisions.

    The facts showing that that Obama has turned his back on virtually all of the promises he made during the 2008 presidential campaign, now that he’s president in 2010, are so well documented that you can’t deny them.

    Therefore you’re left with name-calling as your only recourse.

    Do you have anything other than lies and smears to offer in rebuttal to the documented facts about Obama’s repeated betrayal of his own supporters, Mnemosyne?

    Do you have any facts at all rebut my evidence that Obama seems to have no problem at all going back on his word and breaking his promises to his own people and hanging them out to dry?

    Anything, Mnemosyne?

    Is that your whole argument — that I’m mentally ill?

    Really? Is that it? Is that all?

  364. 364
    Mike Kay says:

    @ricky: I can’t believe Tojo’s trial wasn’t held on the Arizona memorial.

  365. 365

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:
    Horseshit, he speculated, John Cole speculated, and you speculated. I haven’t because I don’t give a fuck. I do give a damn about his boss. Obama can fire him or approve of him because that’s his job. I had hoped Rahm would be good at dealing with that bunch over in Congress – I’d say the jury is out on that.

  366. 366
    Mnemosyne says:

    @gbear:

    I had to look up the lyrics — I’m one of those “‘Scuse me while I kiss this guy” people.

  367. 367
    Mnemosyne says:

    @mclaren:

    Now that you’ve realized you’ve been caught in a lie, you’re backsliding to calling me mentally ill rather than trying to rebut any of my facts.

    No, I’m mocking you because none of your “facts” make sense though you seem desperately convinced that they do.

    You’re right, though — I shouldn’t mock someone so obviously ill.

  368. 368
    gbear says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck: Did the link work for you? I clicked on it after I posted it and only got 30 seconds of the song, not the whole 4+ minutes.

  369. 369
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @mclaren: Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?

  370. 370
    dave says:

    @mclaren: I’m bowing down before an obama poster right now. what you gonna do about it, fuckface?

  371. 371
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher: I did not speculate, because I also don’t give a fuck and stated several times this story wasn’t worth speculating about. I did offer my opinion about what is motivating people like GG, but not about who the sources for the articles were for the simple fact I have no clue, and don’t care. But I am certain that Rahm is not sourcing articles attacking himself.

  372. 372
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @gbear: The link worked but was extremely loud and I cut it off after a couple of seconds.

  373. 373
    Mnemosyne says:

    @gbear:

    The whole thing played for me — Mac user on Safari, if that helps.

  374. 374
    gbear says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Ahh, here’s the problem. It’s on lala. You get to listen to the whole thing once, but only get 30 seconds for repeat listens. Apparently that screw it up for some of you.

    Reposting: A song about facts by Talking Heads.

  375. 375
    Anya says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Just there GG, you’ve dissapointed me. I tought you were bigger than this.

  376. 376
    Mike Kay says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    But I am certain that Rahm is not sourcing articles attacking himself.

    Of course he did.

    Also Jimmy Hoffa arranged for his own disappearance and subsequent burial in Giants Stadium

  377. 377

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:
    So what, are you doubling up as Kay? I’d say Greenwald is about as transparent as anybody writing seriously about politics. Does it disturb you that he wants more from Obama than Obama has offered up? Well, sometimes people do want more.

  378. 378
    ricky says:

    @dave:

    You are really low on the Obot Totem Pole. Those of us with any rank were given the poster with the Obama who bows to us.

  379. 379
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @John Cole: John Cole:

    You guys are odd.

    To say the least. Not exactly the word I’d use but it’ll do.

    You and Greenwald aren’t actually that far apart.

    @John Cole:

    I find it completely plausible that reporters have talked to some of Rahm’s old colleagues, who he has confided in, and they offer up some dish off the record.

    So if this is vastly different from “Rahm is the source” I’d love to hear how.

    Yeah I get the point, some diabolical whispering campaign is different from just saying it to someone. Except I’m not sure how different. Anyway that’s the paper-thin difference between you and GG.

  380. 380
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    So what, are you doubling up as Kay?

    You made a false claim I was speculating and when you found out I wasn’t you come back with this smartass remark. Piss off Butcher.

  381. 381

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:
    Not speculating about GG’s motives? That Rahm didn’t source himself? Fuck you dumb ass.

  382. 382

    @Chuck Butcher:

    I don’t know, I don’t care – he has a boss who can care or not.

  383. 383
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    Does it disturb you that he wants more from Obama than Obama has offered up?

    IMO,. GG wants accolades for digging up dirt on the Executive Branch of government, and now he can’t find any Bush grade muck to rake, he offers lame conspiracy theories on Obama, and when we call him on it. His supporters come around with the “he only wants more from Obama than Obama has offered up” malarkey. So you Obots leave poor Glenn along. Doesn’t wash. It’s a lie imo.

  384. 384
    slackjawedgawker says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    you’re not the only one wondering this….

    it would help explain why 150 or so of the posts on this thread are nearly identical versions of the same “point”

  385. 385
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher: Not entertaining someone else’s fruit loop conspiracy theories is not speculating about anything. Right back at ya dumbass.

  386. 386

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:
    So you know something about GG and Rahm? OK, here I thought you were just another peon with a keyboard.

  387. 387
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    Of course I’m just another peon with a keyboard, just like you and everyone else commenting on this blog.

  388. 388

    So the blather about GG and Rahm is speculation rather than known confirmed fact? I speculate off and on and I don’t deny that I’m doing it.

    As for peon – I’m not sure I even qualify for that level anymore.

  389. 389
    NCReggie says:

    . Some quick thoughts. As one of those cult worshiping “O-Bots” (rank +70 worked as paid staff for the Obama campaign in eastern NC…crazy.) that insults does hurt; after all I only pray to a graven image of obama 5 times a day . Obviously obama derangement syndrome isn’t limited to the right. I sometimes think that some of his most hard-core critics on the left secretly hoped that he would be the second coming of Debs on the down low and were massively disillusioned that Obama turned out to be a left leaning Democratic moderate. For those guys to give him props, he would have to completely swallow their advice and solutions. Even then I’m not sure he could actually get the fire bagger seal of approval. I’m sure these guys would’ve also thought that Lincoln was a southern slave holding sympathizer/coddler, that FDR was a rabid war mongering cultist whose social programs were mainly aimed at saving disaster capitalism (interesting! just like Obamabush!!) and that Lyndon B Johnson was a butcher and southern sympathizer.

  390. 390
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Chuck Butcher I just claimed to not speculate on who sourced Rahm articles, as you accused me of doing. Nice bait and switch to GG’s motivations. I gave my speculation on that, the difference is there is no third party that is anonymous as with the sources to the Rahm articles, therefore it is just a personal opinion and no unknown middle men, as it were.

  391. 391
    AnotherBruce says:

    Fuck, what an entertaining thread, I laughed through the whole thing.

  392. 392

    @NCReggie:
    Well, you’ve qualified for the hippie punching seal of approval – got an encore?

  393. 393
    NCReggie says:

    Now I’m off to sacrifice innoncent babes to my unholy master. the witching hour draws near.

  394. 394
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    I have to go to bed now, and contemplate this Seinfeld thread about nothing.

  395. 395
    Mnemosyne says:

    I need to stop rubbernecking and walk away from the train wreck — I’ve got to work in the morning.

    I think mclaren is my Brick Oven Bill — I just can’t help trying to figure out how he’s going to work Obama into his next incoherent conspiracy theory.

  396. 396
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @Cedwyn:

    Glen dived in with the insults in his first post, which was the twelfth post in this thread, and he went downhill from there.

    Good thing Glen doesn’t have a thin skin, amirite?@

    Chuck Butcher: “I had hoped Rahm would be good at dealing with that bunch over in Congress – I’d say the jury is out on that.”

    I am in complete agreement with that sentiment. What I am sick and tired of are those who want to drag shitty ‘evidence’ before the jury in an attempt to influence it before deliberations begin. I had hoped that Rahm would be able to handle the legislative side of the government better but at the same time I realize that I am not privvy to what is happening in the White House. Maybe this mess is just that, a mess. Maybe it’s deliberate decision by Obama and Rahm is abiding by it. I don’t know. What I do know is that I am not going to worry about this until he is up for re-election.

    That’s when my jury of one will issue my verdict. Until then I will listen, read, discuss, praise and dish out shit as I believe necessary.

    Another thing that I know is that the endless Rahm touched me!  bullshit is just that. GG is basing his bullshit on nothing and he expects us to swallow it whole. In his first post here on this he starts right out by painting anyone who disagrees with his bullshit as an Obama worshiper, as if questioning his assumptions automatically makes one an Obot. Nice way to start out a substantive discussion and expect to be taken seriously, eh? Predictably, it went downhill from there but can you honestly say that GG didn’t bring the grief upon himself from post one? Too many assholes out there take any disagreement with their sacred cow as sacrilege and IMO GG was in here mooing loudly.

    I like to tip sacred cows. ;)

  397. 397
  398. 398
    Uriel says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    I like and respect Greenwald but I don’t read him a lot because he uses too many words to make a point.

    This is a fairly common reaction/ critique of Glen, and not to be picking on Chuck specifically- but I totally don’t understand it at all. I have mixed feelings about Greenwald and generally am nonplussed at the level of authority he’s often granted, but I do have to say that the one thing about him I respect is that he seems to approach fairly complicated topics with the thoroughness and nuance they deserve. Even when I disagree with his conclusions. I’d much rather take the time to read through one of his posts than wade through page after page of “heh, indeedy”‘s.

    Actually, it’s only when he’s being quipy that I really get the feeling that he looses the plot- for example, when he starts on one of his updating binges, or when he ventures into the comments sections of his or other people’s blogs. It seems like the more he constrains himself to a need for brevity, the more sanctimonious and ill-conceived his arguments become, and the more likely I am to just let my eyes switch to using their own built in”whatever dude” filters. (Which isn’t as amusing as pie or dancing badgers, granted, but effective nonetheless.) His initial forays into this thread are a perfect case in point.

    Now, admittedly, there are plenty of times when “tldr is a proper response- when writer’s are clearly trying to hide their abysmally low information to noise ratios by bowling you over with a cascade of random blathering. (Not that I have anyone in mind right now- especially not anyone who’s name might rhyme with, say, “wack sharin’.”)

    But, really, in Glenn’s case, I tend to find “tsdl” a far sounder policy.

  399. 399
    deaniac83 says:

    @ Glenn Greenwald

    Uhm. Wow, I thought you were – whatever else – at least capable of keeping a debate on the merits rather than delving into personal attacks. But I guess not. You want to talk about “Obama cult universe” and “Obama worshippers.” Do you really think that the next time you are on – say, oh I don’t know, C-Span’s Washington Journal and a caller calls – say me – and points out how YOU are ON THE RECORD name-calling people, you are going to have your credibility improved?

    And dude, please, for someone who writes for Salon, you need to clean up your spelling and grammar. “That’s what I wanted to here”??? No, “That’s what I wanted to *hear.*”

    “Someone who’s personal devotion to Obama”…

    Umm. Dude, use a grammar check or something. It should be “someone *WHOSE* personal devotion to Obama”…

    Ugh, I’m glad Salon has editors.

    I don’t give a crap about these stories, neither Rahm nor Rahm’s Democratic opponents stand to gain from the stories. The media and the Republicans do. The media especially has an interest in spreading this kind of crap wasting space and time they could be using to cover real stories with real journalism, you know. But heaven forbid.

  400. 400
    NCReggie says:

    @ chuck butcher
    actually dude I think the hippies had it right; we’d probably be alot better off if the flower children and the civil rights movement had been allowed to actually change our society. But Obama’s the only horse in this race worthing backing. The opposition is nuts and there’s no viable third pary coming in wake of the supreme’s corporate money decision unless its an actual corporation. Alot of the criticisms are valid, Geithner and the handling of wall street versus the auto bailouts. The Afghanistan escalation only because of the former soviet unions spectactular fail there. The health care bill w/o a public option tied to +5 medicare rates. But lets not tear our side down without any alternatives to replace ’em.

  401. 401
    IM says:

    Cedwyn,

    but i’m guessing this assortment will be returned to sender.

    Now you literally lost me. What does that metaphor mean?

    My argument, to retreat into my native language, was just “auf einen groben Klotz gehört ein grober Keil” or “wie man in den Wald hineinruft so schallt es heraus”. Everytime Cole mentions some opinion of Greenwald, some regular commenters here will react with “Grennwald is a kook anyway.” That sets teh tone and I don’t really exoext Grennwadl or anybody else to engage in genuine argumen with them.

    slightly_peeved,

    If Glenn Greenwald gets into angry arguments with anonymous people on the internet because they insult him, he is obviously Not Aware Of All Internet Traditions. In particular the one known as Trolling.

    So your argument is that several of the regular commenters behaved like trolls on this thread?

    Mnemosyne,

    Personally, my prime suspect for these quotes is Marshall Whittmann. He always seems to be the favorite “anonymous Democrat” when it comes to attacking Democrats.

    I already proposed Lanny Davis and Dan Gerstein. I even have a supporting reed for my speculation: Gerstein was just recently cited on the record as an “democratic strategist” by some bastion of conventional wisdom (Time/newsweek/Wapo).

  402. 402
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Chuck Butcher:

    I had hoped Rahm would be good at dealing with that bunch over in Congress – I’d say the jury is out on that.

    I said it on another thread, but I think the administration’s mistake was thinking that Emanuel was their Congress Guy when he was really their House Guy. Pelosi was able to use Emanuel to keep the House in line, but Senators decided they didn’t have to listen to some little schmuck who never got elected to statewide office like they did, and the more Emanuel yelled and screamed, the more they dug in their heels.

    The House is doing fine. They’ve passed health care. They’ve passed climate change. I think they’ve even passed a finance reform bill (though it’s getting late and I’m a little punchy, so I can’t remember). Every clog in this process has happened in the Senate, not the House. I think that’s more Pelosi’s doing than Emanuel’s, but it probably didn’t hurt to have him backing her up the way it did in the Senate.

  403. 403
    Midnight Marauder says:

    Oh my goodness, this thread is absolutely unreal.

  404. 404
    Uriel says:

    @DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):

    GG is basing his bullshit on nothing and he expects us to swallow it whole.

    Heh, indeedy.

  405. 405
    FlipYrWhig says:

    Way upstream, @joe from Lowell:

    Another bad habit of Glenn’s:
    __
    He makes and argument “X, and therefore Y,” and when people question the logic that leads him to conclude Y because of X, he pretends that people are questioning X.

    Spot on. Yes, I’ve seen him do this repeatedly, and I’ve seen his supporters here and Chez Yglesias do the same thing. He also uses Y to build a case for Z before confirming that Y has happened, and then acts as though X proves Z too. “If this is true, it’s a terrible betrayal” becomes “This terrible betrayal was evident to clear-sighted, right-thinking people all along, leading me to rue the many terrible betrayals that are surely still to come.” It’s dishonest and maddening.

  406. 406
    slightly_peeved says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Though how much of that is just structural? The Democrats have enough people in the House to pass bills relatively smoothly, and they don’t have enough to pass stuff in the Senate except via reconciliation.

    I don’t really see how any person the White House could have appointed to whip or cajole the Senate gets around the basic differences in power dynamic. The reason FDR and LBJ got more done (not that I’m sure they did in their first year, but I digress) was just having more people willing to vote for them in the Senate.

  407. 407
    IM says:

    Regarding legislation: Perhaps Emmanuel has delivered and perhaps not. His achievements and failures are too entangled with Pelosi to judge. You can’ t even say he reaches Blue Dogs Pelosi can’ t reach: That could have been Hoyer or until recently Murtha.

    But probably it is structure anyway. Thought experiment: Switch Reid and Pelosi. What would change?

  408. 408
    NobodySpecial says:

    @DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):

    Glen dived in with the insults in his first post, which was the twelfth post in this thread, and he went downhill from there.

    Got nothing for the posters before his first post, eh? You know, the ones who called him a liar and paranoiac?

    Revisionist history is not only a Bush product, it seems.

  409. 409
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @NobodySpecial:

    Talk about Y proving X…lol! If it was “revisionist” I wouldn’t have bothered to note the post position. Nor did I say that he wasn’t insulted in the first eleven posts, did I? I did sarcastically note that he didn’t seem to have a thin skin as was evident from his first response after only eleven  comments here. Those little details may be too much for you to handle without shoving something valuable off onto your mental swap file like common sense.

    ProTip: When you locate it store it in ROM.

    It’s the internet and insults are part of the action. GG wrote bullshit and was called on it with commentary that is usual for the internet. He took it personally and responded like a butthurt little boy. Mayhem ensued.

    Are you aware of all internet traditions?

  410. 410
    hypusine says:

    I honestly wasn’t looking for folks to react to my (rare) post but wow. This is a tribal bunch. Does the ad hominem tip make you feel better? Good. Would-umz like a wowwipop? Jesus.

  411. 411
    Xenos says:

    @NCReggie: As one of those guys who would love Obama to be Debs on the down low, I never expected Obama to be much more than than what he has been. Scratch that, he has exceeded expectations, except in the ‘push the Senate into doing its job’ category. I guess that makes me a self-punching hippy, which is a labour-saving type of Obot that is useful to have around.

    The opposition is nuts and there’s no viable third pary coming in wake of the supreme’s corporate money decision unless its an actual corporation.

    That is actually a pretty good idea… remind me of that when I win the powerball.

  412. 412
    Xenos says:

    @hypusine: But if you are right then most of this thread is just a mean-spirited circle jerk. Buzzkills tend to be ignored.

  413. 413
    Plantsmantx says:

    called on it with commentary that is usual for the internet. He took it personally and responded like a butthurt little boy. Mayhem ensued.

    If anything, he took it and responded in kind, so if he responded like a “butthurt little boy”, there are a lot of them on this thread.

  414. 414
    Cedwyn says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    @Cedwyn: I don’t care about the name calling or who started it. I am concerned with people building false memes on the unknown and presenting them as plausible, while in this case claiming Rahm Emmanuel is sourcing articles attacking himself. And then claiming they don’t do speculation, when that is exactly what they are doing.

    agreed. and i wouldn’t care about the name calling under normal circumstances, but I just had to flip IM some grief for whinging on glenn’s behalf about “but someone provoked him!”

    @flipyrwhig:

    that about sums it up, eh?

    @IM:

    Everytime Cole mentions some opinion of Greenwald, some regular commenters here will react with “Grennwald is a kook anyway.” That sets teh tone and I don’t really exoext Grennwadl or anybody else to engage in genuine argumen with them.

    unsinn! greenwald ist profi oder er ist nicht; es gibt keine ausrede.

  415. 415
    SGEW says:

    I’m disappointed that there weren’t more jokes on this thread. Otherwise, it went pretty much the way I thought it would.

  416. 416
    AxelFoley says:

    @Something Fabulous:
    @Uloborus:

    What the both of you said. And what makes this worse to me is that all of this bullshit is coming from the Left. Who needs the Right when the Left cannibalizes its own?

  417. 417
    taylormattd says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Wow, what a dick. Fuck you, and your pathetic “Obama worshipper” bullshit.

    Jesus Christ you are a fucking baby. For god’s sake John’s point about 11 dimensional chess is well taken, yet you not only refuse to consider the possibility that you might be wrong, you go nuts and namecall.

    Your quote proves exactly nothing. Who fucking cares? How is answering a reporter’s question undermining Obama? How is disagreeing with Holder when asked a question evidence that he planted Rahm-worshipping stories with Dana Milbank and others? It isn’t.

  418. 418
    John Cole says:

    Has it ever occurred to any of you that Glenn responded the way he did because of where we are? I haven’t asked him, but I bet he actually had a lot of fun in here throwing elbows around- kind of something the comments here are known for.

    Let’s face it. He doesn’t get to do what he did here on CSPAN or on the Bill Moyers show or the other places he normally has to argue.

  419. 419
    taylormattd says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: Wtf is wrong with you? Having fun with your stupid fucking straw men?

    There is zero equivalence behind the looney, unsourced “If-only-Obama-had-listened-to-Rahm-on-healthcare” Dana Milbank article, and the article where Rahm is asked a question about KSM and answers it on the record.

    Why do you keep pretending they are the same? They aren’t. Rahm saying he doesn’t think KSM should be tried in a civilian court is not evidence that he planted the Dana Milbank article. It just isn’t.

  420. 420
    taylormattd says:

    @John Cole: Yeah, but John, the problem is that he doesn’t even consider the possibility that he is wrong. Instead, his first instinct is to scream Obamabot / Cultist. It’s pathetic, especially when his argument does not make logical sense.

  421. 421
    AxelFoley says:

    Whoa, I haven’t had a chance to read the rest of this thread (420+ posts), but Greenawald decided grace us with his presence? LOL, take your purer-than-thou ass back to your blog, Greenie, and go Cheney yourself.

  422. 422
    AxelFoley says:

    @Napoleon:

    Little man complex much?

  423. 423
    taylormattd says:

    @Glenn Greenwald: You want us to notify media outlets about you being libertarian?

    Maybe we should email them your posts where you give that racist wingut Ron Paul a tongue bath.

  424. 424
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @John Cole: Absolutely it occurred to me, it is his fainting ninny supporters throwing rose petals at his feet that is annoying. There are no bullies in the BJ arena, only those with good left hooks, and those with glass jaws.

    I do think Glenn needs to expand his repertoire of insults though. The cultist thingy is worn, and smacks of elitist superiority and too broad a dismissal brush. A few targeted “f bombs” and “knuckleheads” would go a ways for his street cred in this brokedown palace of pain.

  425. 425
    DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal) says:

    @Plantsmantx:

    I didn’t write some widely disseminated story about Rahm and then have to back it up with facts, GG did and didn’t. He blew up after reading John’s write-up on him and maybe five of the first eleven posts that were critical of him. Rather than coming in and backing his bullshit up instead he immediately dismissed any critique of his crap as Obama worship and then  he lamely tried to get us to believe that indeed he did pull a jackalope out of his ass.

    He writes, we comment. While John is right that he can say whatever he wants to here, that doesn’t mean that it’s actually the smart thing for him to do. I’m just some nobody giving free commentary on the internet, Glen isn’t. While I am sure I didn’t impress him with anything I said, I can say that it was likewise for him with me.

    But I’m not selling anything, am I? He is. ;)

  426. 426
    MNPundit says:

    I am not a fan of Obama. I have openly stated at DailyKos that I hate him. I am also not a fan of Greenwald. I simply grew tired of a person who was constantly hysterical. He has no switch between 1 and 11!!!!1!! zOmg! Noes! at his own place. I think that’s ridiculous. I currently am not afraid of being seized in the night tortured and killed by my government. Clearly the world has not ended.

    He blogs on serious issues and can be good. But as I said, he can also be hysterical.

    Basically to be more substantive I get where both Cole and Greenwald or coming from. Why would Rahm use anonymous sources to trash the WH? He’d look bad and has already said so in the press openly. On the other hand, Rahm has already disagreed, perhaps remaining anonymous through some method (friends, aides, whatever) he is voicing more critiques. It could be because of a power play in the WH.

    Frankly I think the idea that Obama is apologizing to Republican Washington is bunk. Obama has no need to do backhanded apologizing. He can punch hippies all the live long day and people like Cole or Booman will make sure the online left just takes it. The rest of the left has limited power is too busy living actual lives to pay much attention. The unhinged craziness over at places like FDL just works against them for genuine reasons.

    Glenn always always always imputes the worst motives to people based on limited evidence. The inferences are not necessarily wrong but they are tenuous sometimes. With the Bushes this was more justified because people like Cheney and Rove should frankly, never have been born.

    There is simply a higher standard for Obama not because of blind support but because on many issues (not internal security) he is better than Bush. It doesn’t make sense to me for Rahm to be carrying Obama’s water.

    It DOES make more sense to me that Rahm is doing this and Obama simply lacks the guts to fire him. Obama has consistently shown he doesn’t have what it takes to stand up to people unless it’s the left. But that’s just speculation. The really stupid thing Glenn did was come out with a ridiculous assertion as the second of only two possibilities.

    Look I just graduated from Law School but you need to do a better job arguing if your speculation amounts to one plausible and one ridiculous assertion and you choose the silly one.

  427. 427
    liberal says:

    @taylormattd:
    Instead, his first instinct is to scream Obamabot / Cultist.

    Those instincts are pretty good, actually.

    A few weeks back I posted strongly disagreeing with some stuff I thought was BS from other commenters, only to have General “Douchebag” Stuck accuse me of being a PUMA. That’s LOL funny, given I voted for Obama in both the primary and general, and gave his campaign at least $1,000.

  428. 428
    liberal says:

    @Xenos:

    As one of those guys who would love Obama to be Debs on the down low, I never expected Obama to be much more than than what he has been. Scratch that, he has exceeded expectations, except in the ‘push the Senate into doing its job’ category.

    I never expected Obama to be Debs either; I looked up his Am for Dem Action scores long before I voted for him in the primary against Hillary.

    As far as “exceptions” go, though, you mean to tell me what he’s done on the bailout (i.e., pretty much continuing what Bush did, and furthermore picking the repellant Geithner and Summers) is what you expected? I didn’t expect him to nominate Bill Black or Brooksley Born to head Treasury, but Geithner is an attrocity.

  429. 429
    sparky says:

    @MNPundit: i’d agree with your last point, except that since it is just speculation there isn’t anything to prove, so to speak.

    somehow, here, a speculative notion somehow got converted into some great big theory that was wrong because it wasn’t supported with enough evidence. silly argument since it was just speculation. was that because so many people here dislike greenwald? or because they disagreed with his notion? dunno. maybe it’s both. either. neither. something else.

    ooh, more speculation!

    @Xenos: Q, if you are still here–how exactly has Obama exceeded your expectations? just curious as i am a horrible commie and didn’t expect much but did expect more than what we have.

  430. 430
    Will says:

    Glenn Greenwald supported the USSC Citizen’s United decision. That pretty much defines him for me.

  431. 431
    Bruce (formerly Steve S.) says:

    @John:

    They are Emanuel’s allies according to whom?

    I wrote, “assuming this is correct”. The article was written by Jason Horowitz of the WaPo.

    Surely there is the strong possibility that these are “distant hangers on claiming to Emanuel’s allies in order for their whining to seem more newsworthy for idiots like Dana Milbank”?

    Milbank’s article didn’t have any sources that I saw, anonymous or otherwise. Horowitz’s article refers to “the Rahm-knows-better-than-the-president notion, increasingly spread by his allies and articulated in a Washington Post column by Dana Milbank last month…” Since the article is heavily sourced with both on and off-the-record political heavyweights I don’t see any reason to think that this came from “distant hangers on.”

  432. 432
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Will:

    Glenn Greenwald supported the USSC Citizen’s United decision.

    We can safely say that there are only two possible explanations for this. (1) Glenn Greenwald loves corporations so much he wants to marry them. (2) The US Chamber of Commerce has bought off Glenn Greenwald, in a bankshot attempt to defend corporate oligarchy via killing health care by inducing a putative health-care-reform supporter to be rather tepid in its defense. Anyone who believes otherwise is nothing but a Glennbot deluded by their Smug Leader.

  433. 433
    Corner Stone says:

    @General Egali Tarian Stuck:

    The cultist thingy is worn, and smacks of elitist superiority and too broad a dismissal brush.

    Two of the Front Pagers here declare they are “Obots”.
    So…say what now?

  434. 434

    […] Cole starts a comment war, featuring none other than Glennzilla himself, with this comment: Glenn consistently mocks the […]

  435. 435
    lol says:

    What is it about Team Poutrage that makes them such obstinate prima donnas? Sirota, Hamsher, Greenwald, etc.

  436. 436
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @Corner Stone:

    So…say what now?

    I say we sacrifice a Corner Stone to keep the Unicorn Gawds fat and happy.

  437. 437
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @liberal:

    A few weeks back I posted strongly disagreeing with some stuff I thought was BS from other commenters, only to have General “Douchebag” Stuck accuse me of being a PUMA.

    Poor baby. cookie?

  438. 438
    onceler says:

    Ha! This thread is awesome. A bunch of silly people projecting their own fears and paranoias while claiming that GG is paranoid and all full of CTs, getting totally owned by the man himself.

    God this blog has become an embarrassment. I especially love the comment where he says to use quotes containing actual, well, quotes, instead of making crap up and then attributing it to him. Because that seems to be pretty much about 100% of the content around here recently. For shame.

  439. 439
    General Egali Tarian Stuck says:

    @onceler: You better be careful dude, Obama’s covert ninjas have long arms. And Rahm controls them from his underground bunker undisclosed location.

  440. 440
    maus says:

    Rahm may be a lot of things, but he is not a blithering idiot, and I’d bet anything he hates these stories as much as Obama.

    I don’t agree. You don’t have to be one of the firepups to see that Rahm has been spreading the mythology of himself for years before he came to this position.

  441. 441
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @Glenn Greenwald:

    I just stumbled across this thread and saw this.

    Wow. Just wow.

    Sorry, you have now lost all credibility with this reader.

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