No Newt is good Newt

DougJ – I can’t speak for Conor. We tend to disagree as much as we agree on anything. In any case, as far as Newt Gingrich is concerned I find him neither a candidate with a very good chance at winning, or someone who I’d be comfortable having in the Oval Office. It’s not his pandering over the Ground Zero Mosque that bothers me so much (though it does); or his rather laughable attempts to paint the Obama administration as a ‘secular-socialist machine’ and to repeat that phrase as often as he can; but rather his devotion to the warfare state which keeps me up nights imagining his presidency. Actually, that keeps me up nights when I imagine any number of candidates, from Hillary Clinton to Sarah Palin to our very own Barack Obama whose own devotion to the war in Afghanistan (or is it an Overseas Contingency Operation?) will likely be one of the great tragedies of his legacy.

I’m more of a Gary Johnson guy myself. I like Mitch Daniels, too, but I haven’t been paying close enough attention to his foreign policy to say for sure. I’d vote for Johnson over any other candidate out there.

I think some conservatives view Gingrich as a guy who knows what he’s doing – a policy expert, someone who can navigate Washington, beat the Democrats at their own games, etc. I think he’s a pretty standard, boiler-plate Big Government Conservative more interested in playing war than making government work effectively. The mosque business simply confirms this. But I think at one point a lot of conservatives viewed him as the moderate, rational, wonkish leader they’d like to have instead of say, Sarah Palin. That the two are becoming more and more indistinguishable is hardly surprising, but it certainly speaks to his character.






260 replies
  1. 1
    TomG says:

    OK, you just sold me! I’m definitely a Gary Johnson fan myself.

  2. 2
    Mike G says:

    a pretty standard, boiler-plate Big Government Conservative more interested in playing war than making government work effectively.

    He’s a Rovian egotistical asshole, more obsessed with winning political games and cronyist looting rather than being an effective administrator.

    As for his “intellectual” cred, it’s a symbol of the soft bigotry of low expectations on the Repig side at the pit of the devolutionary arc of dumbassery from Reagan to Quayle, GW Bush to Palin.

    As Barney Frank once said, Newt doesn’t have any ideas, but he likes the idea of ideas. He throws around ideas like an MBA tosses around the latest shallow management fad, all buzzwords and no depth.

  3. 3
    Pangloss says:

    The GOP thinks that winning elections is all the evidence you need of public policy efficacy.

  4. 4
    Crashman says:

    But I think at one point a lot of conservatives viewed him as the moderate, rational, wonkish leader they’d like to have…

    But where did this perception come from? Back in the 90s, during the whole government shutdown thing, he came off as a whiny, grandstanding fool in my parent’s opinion, and they were conservative. That impression is really the first one I’ve ever had of Newt, so I don’t understand why anyone could take him seriously in the first place.

  5. 5
    Napoleon says:

    Who the hell is Gary Johnson?

  6. 6
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    I’m trying to think of a Dem equivalent to Gary Johnson–independent but partisan with some heterodox stances–, and the closest I can come is a pre-Iraq Howard Dean (fiscal hawk, 100% rating from the NRA, supported civil unions but opposed gay marriage, IIRC).

  7. 7
    freelancer says:

    @Napoleon:

    Who the hell is Gary Johnson?

    I think he played Lumbergh in Office Space. Or maybe one of the Bobs.

  8. 8
    Zifnab says:

    Actually, that keeps me up nights when I imagine any number of candidates, from Hillary Clinton to Sarah Palin to our very own Barack Obama whose own devotion to the war in Afghanistan (or is it an Overseas Contingency Operation?) will likely be one of the great tragedies of his legacy.

    Barak Obama walked into office campaigning against the War in Iraq. I’m hoping he doesn’t walk out as his opponent campaigns against the War in Afghanistan.

    That said, Obama is more receptive to public opinion than Bush ever was. I don’t see him cheer leading the War in Afghanistan. And given the big emphasis that has been placed on budget deficits, it can’t have missed his attention that ending these wars would do miracles for the US budget.

    The military problem isn’t an Obama problem – or even a Hillary problem or a Gingrich problem. It’s a Congress problem. They are all too willing to keep cutting big checks to military contractors. Until Congress stops writing blank checks, you’re never going to see these kinds of conflicts end. They’re simply too easy to enter and too hard to leave.

  9. 9

    @Napoleon: Former Gov of NM. His primary method of governance was do nothing, nothing at all. Don’t sign any bills nor spend a plug nickel. He about drove our dem state legislature around the bend. He was for legalizing most drugs however, after the 2001 recession, and did leave the state something of a surplus, mainly cause he did nothing and spent nothing.. He was the governor of nothing. This state relected him though due to our sometimes wreckless streak of libertarian.

    He is a Paulite of the first order.

  10. 10
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

     

    rather his devotion to the warfare state which keeps me up nights imagining his presidency

    So what is your path to a political environment where we can elect a non-warfare POTUS and Congress? What memes do we need to craft, what buttons do we need push, to make it happen?

    I have this vague hope that someday the anti-war left and the true fiscal conservative right can make common cause against the MIC (slogan: time to end a folly we can’t afford, can’t sustain, and can’t justify), but it seems like trying to get the two groups together is like sending out invitations to a combined dog and cat show. It sounds good until random barking and hissing happens, distractions ensue, and it all goes downhill from there.

    And neither side has a big media footprint. So where do we go from here?

  11. 11
    Violet says:

    From a female point of view, Newt is a total and complete hypocritical, misogynistic ass. He divorced his first wife while she was being treated for breast cancer. And he was cheating on his wife all while beating up on Bill Clinton for doing the very same thing.

    He’s a horrid toad of a man. Merely looking at him makes my skin crawl. I can’t imagine how he can win the Presidency with that kind of track record with women.

  12. 12
    El Cid says:

    Though repeated this from the last thread, I’d like to point out that Gingrich is still a hypocritical pseudo-intellectual piece of shit.

    After propagandizing on every right wing source available for a week or whatever it was against the TARP as basically a comyoonist takeover of society etc., including the very day before the 1st vote, the day of the vote obviously some powerful (presumably Wall Street rich) folks got in touch with him as it seemed like the House vote would fail.

    The very morning of the vote he reversed his week of bullshit screaming propagandizing against the Stalinization of the American economy and said, well, however bad it is it’s better than the risks we face without it.

    And the vote that day failed. And not coincidentally it was because Pelosi wasn’t dumb enough to have Democrats pass it without a majority of Republicans voting for it. No football pulling for her.

    Gingrich is no more than an utterly hypocritical piece of shit who repackages conservative mantras with as many pseudo-intellectual terms as the beloved David Brooks, but more willing to spend lots of time in wingnutville when his desired centrist audience isn’t paying attention.

  13. 13
    orogeny says:

    @Napoleon:

    He’s a Tea Party republitarian whose running for prez in ’12 on a platform of absolutely impossible “hard choices” that sound really good but have about as much chance of happening as snow in Alabama today. Things like cutting medicare and social security, adopting a flat tax, doing away with the Dept of Education, etc, etc, etc. I’m sure he’s making a nice living running for office and selling his book.

  14. 14
    srv says:

    If all that inflation Gary has been predicting is right “around the corner” for years doesn’t happen, will you still lap up his economic, de-regulation and Austerian philosophy?

    I’d guess not.

  15. 15
    freelancer says:

    @General Stuck:

    Yeah he was the only politician with any visible footprint this year in Iowa on Ragbrai. I took a look at his policy pamphlet brochure and thought, wow, another Ron Paul wannabe.

  16. 16
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mike G:

    He’s a Rovian egotistical asshole, more obsessed with winning political games and cronyist looting rather than being an effective administrator.

    aka Republican politician

  17. 17
    orogeny says:

    @General Stuck:

    He is a Paulite of the first order.

    I think he’s running this time as Paul-lite.

  18. 18
    El Cid says:

    @srv: The reason we have all this high inflation is because of the deficit. If we stop all da damn spendin’, the jobs will come back and inflation will go back down.

  19. 19
    Jim Pharo says:

    Let’s just say it: Newt is the standard bearer for the large and growing segment of the GOP that is simply dumb. They also like (surprise!) Sara Palin.

    I’m not sure which actual Republicans smart Republicans are supposed to like. The closest I can come is Obama, who’s pretty close to Ike, overall. I’m serious: name someone who is a bona fide Republican who doesn’t embrace stupidity.

    If I were a smart Republican, who could I look to to carry my banner? (And if anyone says “Paul Ryan,” I’ll be able to tell that you’re kidding.)

  20. 20
    Corner Stone says:

    @Zifnab:

    I don’t see [Obama] cheer leading the War in Afghanistan.

    So what.

    And given the big emphasis that has been placed on budget deficits, it can’t have missed his attention that ending these wars would do miracles for the US budget.

    That’s why we keep seeing requests for supplemental spending. I never hear a discussion about the budget without the accompanying “non-defense spending” term showing up.

  21. 21
    Corner Stone says:

    I’d vote for Johnson over any other candidate out there.

    wallah.

  22. 22
    EndOfTheWorld says:

    I remain to be convinced that Newt Gingrich is an actual human being and not a character from a little-known Dickens work that escaped the holodeck to cause trouble.

  23. 23
    Slippy says:

    @El Cid: I assume you are being facetious.

  24. 24
    matoko_chan says:

    our very own Barack Obama whose own devotion to the war in Afghanistan

    Not like O has a choice, creeper.
    He has to be devoted to getting us the fuck out of there.
    I think you just might want to start your tenure here by admitting that we elected a WEC moron in GW Bush so horrendously stupid that he nearly wrecked our whole country, and that Obama has to clean up the shitstorm Bush left behind him.
    The thing you can’t bear to admit, Kain, is that Bush was so dumb he didnt understand that when muslims can vote, muslims will vote for islam.
    We’ve been trying to stand up a western-style democracy in MENA for a decade…..guess what? It can’t be done.
    The Bush Doctrine was never more than a recipe for expensive bloody failsauce, and n/e one with an IQ over temperature could have seen that.

  25. 25
    Mark S. says:

    @Mike G:

    As Barney Frank once said, Newt doesn’t have any ideas, but he likes the idea of ideas.

    That’s the damn truth. When guys like Joke Line come up for air and tell us that Newt is just brimming with great ideas, they are usually along the lines of “Why can’t the death penalty be more like American Idol?”

    Here are Newt’s ideas on health care reform: tort reform, HSA’s (which he repeats about seven times to bring the number of ideas up to ten), and letting insurers sell across state lines so they can be more like credit card companies. John Boehner could have written this thing; there are no innovative ideas here.

  26. 26
    Corner Stone says:

    @Slippy: How else do you propose we reduce the deficit and start creating jobs?

  27. 27
    Cacti says:

    I’d say Newt’s chops as a politician are pretty overrated as well.

    After being swept to power in the realignment election of 1994, and with the determination to bring down the Clinton Presidency…

    Clinton romped to reelection in ’96, and Newt was out as Speaker of the House a mere four years later, discredited and defeated.

  28. 28
    Michael D. says:

    Would anyone want a president named “Newt” no matter how good he was?

  29. 29
    matoko_chan says:

    @Corner Stone: nice use of teh language.
    i sense an incipient reversion.
    ;)

  30. 30
    Michael D. says:

    Never mind. I just realized that we have a governor named Sonny.

  31. 31
    birthmarker says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ: E.D. is saying that would be a republican, dude.

    Also, as far as that Afghan war thing…would that be the one we have been in since October?? Of 2001?? Where was the call to get out during the Bush administration? Did Obama run on getting out of Afghanistan?

  32. 32
  33. 33
    orogeny says:

    @Slippy:
    Don’t you get it? If we can cut the deficit, stop all the damned stimulus spending and get any loose cash out of the hands of the proles, CEOs will regain their confidence and hire them all at minimum wage to produce things that we can export to countries whose people actually have some disposable income, putting more cash in the pockets of business folks which will enable them to hire more proles at minimum wage… and so on, ad infinitum.

  34. 34
    flukebucket says:

    @Slippy:

    I assume you are being facetious.

    I call it hilarious. Mainly because I live and work around people who say shit like that and are serious.

  35. 35
    DougJ says:

    I agree with a reasonable amount of your analysis of Newt. I don’t think he’s a policy expert, though.

    I know a little about Gary Johnson but that not that much. What I know, I like.

  36. 36
    matoko_chan says:

    GARY JOHNSON?
    you got to be kidding meh.
    that is one of the worst toupes i have ever seen.

  37. 37
    fraught says:

    I want the minute and a half back that it took me to read this post.
    I cannot believe that, on BJ, someone is actually explaining, in 2010, why he’d prefer not to have to vote for Newt Gingrich. I don’t care how well intentioned this poster is. This is not even something I’d have wanted to read in 1994.

    If this is what E.D. Kain is going to be writing about here, I’d prefer to be doing something else.

  38. 38
    Hunter Gathers says:

    I like Mitch Daniels, too

    Ah yes, Mitch “The Iraq War will cost $1.95” Daniels.

  39. 39
    schrodinger's cat says:

    Who is Gary Johnson?

  40. 40
    Aaron says:

    @Jim Pharo

    I think Jim pretty much hit the nail on the head. If you removed names and party affiliations from the equation, and just look at the person’s platforms and actions, Obama would have been called a conservative forty years ago. His health care plan was very similar to that proposed by Dole in the 90’s. His stance of wars, economics, and social issues seem pretty conservative to me as well.

    The issue seems to be that “conservatives” have moved so far to the right they are no longer actually conservative. They are social reactionaries who have traded policies for slogans and intelligence for telegenics.

  41. 41
    birthmarker says:

    @matoko_chan: Thanks. You said what I was thinking much better than I could. Can’t spend my time chatting about who makes the better presidential timber-Mitch Daniels or Gary Johnson (who I have never heard of.)

  42. 42
    SpotWeld says:

    A “warefare state” is pretty much a “welfare state” that only helps the top 10%

  43. 43
    Rosalita says:

    @Michael D.:

    Would anyone want a president named “Newt” no matter how good he was?

    I keep flashing back to the days of Murphy Brown and her relentlessly referring to him as “Newtie”

  44. 44
    Mark S. says:

    Who is John Galt Gary Johnson?

  45. 45
    Hunter Gathers says:

    @DougJ:

    I know a little about Gary Johnson but that not that much. What I know, I like.

    Don’t get your hopes up. In order to win a GOPer primary for the next 20 years, you have to come up with a way to say “nigger, spic, nigger, spic, evil muslims, nigger, spic, jew” in code or you’ll never win a single primary. Or get on the TV.

  46. 46
    cyntax says:

    @fraught:

    In all fairness Kain was responding to a question from DougJ.

  47. 47
    Michael D. says:

    @DougJ: Every time I drive home from the airport, I see a sign that reads:

    We’re Glad Georgia’s on Your Mind
    Sonny Perdue – Governor

    And it’s pronounced “Sunneh Perdooooo”

    I am the local head of an international hostpitality group, and I’m usually going to the airport to pick up guests from all over the world. When we pass that sign, I usually try to distract them from it with conversation.

    Or by pointing out the “Welcome to Atlanta, Home of So So Def Records” billboard that’s coming up.

  48. 48
    BH says:

    After checking out the Our America Initiative (if it’s our America, who are “they”?), Johnson appears to be a classic glibertarian that uses right-wing framing to propose supposed solutions to problems, but you quickly realize that these ideas have no sound reasoning or evidence behind them.

    First the Washington Examiner and now this. This new Kain guy is a real dud.

  49. 49
    roshan says:

    @Mark S.:
    I think innovation for the GOPer’s is like taking a bus ride out of Bumblefuck, USA to the nearest city. For most others it’s usually like sending unmanned spacecrafts to Mars.

  50. 50
    srv says:

    Kain, did you vote for Bush?

  51. 51
    Corner Stone says:

    @matoko_chan: I actually mean it as “what the heck nonsense is this?!”

    Gary freakin’ Johnson?

  52. 52
    JGabriel says:

    E.D. @ Top (Do you prefer E.D., Erik, Kain, or EDK?):

    I’m more of a Gary Johnson guy myself.

    Who?

    Gary Earl Johnson (born January 1, 1953) is an American businessman, triathlete, and libertarian-leaning Republican politician […] In the 2008 election campaign, Johnson endorsed Ron Paul for the Republican presidential nomination.

    Oh.

    So. What’s your take on Ron and Rand Paul? Like? Dislike? Crazy regressive crypto-racists?

    .

  53. 53
    jrg says:

    @Michael D.: They mostly come at night. Mostly.

    No Newt is good Newt

    Nice to see E.D. Kain is starting to fit in already.

  54. 54

    @DougJ:

    I know a little about Gary Johnson but that not that much. What I know, I like.

    Like Paul and his son, he is a nice guy and a number of his libertarian positions align with mine, but he is hard core in his libertine philosophy and when you dig in a little deeper he is a law of the jungle sort, especially on socioeconomic stuff. His appeal here in this largely independent voter state was that he pissed off his GOP mates almost as much as liberal ones, especially with his drug decriminalization crusade, and also anti neo connism.

  55. 55
    TooManyJens says:

    I didn’t know who Gary Johnson was, so looked him up in Wikipedia and practically drooled over this bit:

    In 1999, Johnson became the highest-ranking elected official in the United States to advocate the legalization of marijuana. Saying the War on Drugs was “an expensive bust,” he advocated the decriminalization of drug use and the concentration on harm reduction measures for all other illegal drugs. He suggests that drug abuse be treated as a health issue and not as a criminal issue.

    Don’t know anything else about him, but Drug War sanity is at least a good start.

  56. 56
    Corner Stone says:

    @Aaron:

    If you removed names and party affiliations from the equation, and just look at the person’s platforms and actions, Obama would have been called a conservative forty years ago.

    Obama would be called a conservative right through Reagan’s terms, and Bush I. They would have stopped calling him conservative when WJC became president.

  57. 57
    matoko_chan says:

    @Corner Stone: yes, that is the perfect use of wallah….it is an exclamation of gobsmacked astonishment.
    i agree.
    did you look at his website? that is one of the worst toupes i have seen.
    Obviously, Kain needs to step away from the crackpipe.

  58. 58
    eemom says:

    @General Stuck:

    is he one of those antiabortion “libertarians”? Because that, right there, is proof of being full of shit. IMO.

  59. 59
    Frank says:

    to our very own Barack Obama whose own devotion to the war in Afghanistan (or is it an Overseas Contingency Operation?) will likely be one of the great tragedies of his legacy.

    I doubt it. He has already drawn down on the war in Iraq as promised. He has, for now, made Afghanistan a priority because of Bush’s incompetence. But I have no doubt that he will also draw down on this war as well.

    Mr Steele tried to claim that this was Obama’s war. That created a fire storm from both the left but more so the right. Everybody knows that Bush started the Afghanistan war right after 911

  60. 60
    Jman says:

    Johnson wants to slash Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. He wants to eliminate stimulus spending and he talks about preventing government take over of health care. What a ridiculous excuse for another delusional conservative.

  61. 61
    TD says:

    So it doesn’t really bother you that Newt has been shilling for strategically stunted bigots in the whole NYC mosque affair?

    Very clarifying.

  62. 62
    JGabriel says:

    @Hunter Gathers

    Don’t get your hopes up. In order to win a GOPer primary for the next 20 years, you have to come up with a way to say “nigger, spic, nigger, spic, evil muslims, nigger, spic, jew” in code or you’ll never win a single primary.

    Right. And a Republican who endorsed Ron Paul for president would never do anything like that. Paul’s endorsement from, for instance, Stormfront, is completely innocent.

    .

  63. 63
    Zifnab says:

    @Corner Stone: Spending is a Congressional issue. If the Senate and the House want to pass war funding in the Defense bill, they are free to do so. You can’t seriously blame the President for requesting money.

    Congress – specifically the House of Representatives – controls the US purse strings. Obama can scale operations up or down and he can distribute troops and resources with some latitude. But Congress ultimately cuts the checks. Until you kill Congress’s war lust, you’re not going to see a serious decrease in military spending.

  64. 64
    eemom says:

    first exposure — massive OVEREXPOSURE — I got to Newtie was when he was in his heydey as “speaker” back in early 1995. My daughter was a newborn and so I watched a lot of teevee while nursing her. It was Newt and the OJ trial, 24/7. No wonder I had severe post-partum depression.

    And Newt was a fat, obnoxious, blowhard asshole then, just like he is now.

  65. 65
    tomvox1 says:

    @fraught:

    Ditto this. “Reasonable Conservative” = “Concerned Libertartian” = Oxymoron.

    I mean Mitch Daniels and Gary Johnson? Really???

    Peddle this jive elsewhere, Monsieur Kain.

  66. 66
    Cacti says:

    @Jman:

    Johnson wants to slash Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. He wants to eliminate stimulus spending and he talks about preventing government take over of health care. What a ridiculous excuse for another delusional conservative.

    OTOH, he probably supports using the police power of the State to support a business owner’s inviolable, sacred right to exclude niggers anyone he doesn’t like from the premises.

  67. 67
    Slippy says:

    @Corner Stone:

    How else do you propose we reduce the deficit and start creating jobs?

    I really can’t tell if you’re being serious. First off, the first comment was that the only way to get rid of this “high inflation” was to reduce the deficit. I’m kind of curious what high inflation anyone is talking about.

    And of course, reducing the deficit does not equal creating jobs. History in fact records that reducing the deficit is almost guaranteed to not create jobs in a slump economy.

  68. 68
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    Yup. The invocation of Gary Johnson by our new front pager tells me that I was right in my impression, from the few things of his that I’ve read before, that he is a libertarian.

    Sad, really. I could really get into talking to someone on the other side of the fence that I could respect. But there is no one I respect less than libertarians. Well, okay, that’s hyperbole. But other than al Qaeda, all religious leaders of any stripe, and the KKK, there’s pretty much no one I respect less than libertarians.

  69. 69
    Svensker says:

    @Corner Stone:

    wallah.

    Please don’t say this. It is a Pet Peeve of mine. The word is “voila.”

    Kthnxbai.

  70. 70
    JGabriel says:

    General Stuck:

    Like Paul and his son, [Johnson] is a nice guy …

    I know a lot of people believe that, but I’ve seen too much racial ugliness under the Paul names and among their supporters to put a lot of faith in that assessment.

    … he pissed off his GOP mates almost as much as liberal ones, especially with his drug decriminalization crusade, and also anti neo connism.

    Well, at least that’s probably a good thing.

    .

  71. 71
    TooManyJens says:

    @Zifnab:

    You can’t seriously blame the President for requesting money.

    When he’s requesting money for planes and weapons systems we don’t need, or when he pursues a foreign policy that requires us to spend vast sums of money we can’t afford on killing people who pose no threat to us, I kinda can.

    I’m not singling Obama out here — he has made a little progress on these fronts relative to Republicans, but that’s just not a high bar to clear.

  72. 72

    As far as mister Kain goes, upon reading some of his writings elsewhere, he seems to be straight forward and basically honest in his beliefs,

    Though I certainly disagree with his beliefs, some quite strenuously, sincerity and respect for the truth is the most important thing in pol debate for me.

    What I hate most of all in politics are polemic arguments based of ideological dogma, whether from the left or right. Or, people with a fixed belief about something that try to blow smoke up my ass with selective facts and non facts to reach a justification for those fixed beliefs.

  73. 73
    comrade scott's agenda of rage says:

    Mitch Daniels? Puh fucking leeeze.

    Just read Doghouse Riley’s blog, Bats Left, Throws Right, for a perspective on the diminutive governor of IN and how he’s no “good” Republican.

  74. 74
    flukebucket says:

    Today marks the second time I have heard of Gary Johnson. The only thing I know about him I have read in this blog post. He sounds like a Sharron Angle type to me. A fairly typical Tea Party candidate.

  75. 75
    Bill Murray says:

    @Hunter Gathers: yes, the Pocket Kreskin — his big policy seems to be to sell everything saleable and count that as a surplus. Always good to read Doghouse Riley on Daniels or as Doghouse calls him a surly megalomaniac with a Napoleonic complex

    http://doghouseriley.blogspot......0Complexes

  76. 76
    Mark S. says:

    @eemom:

    is he one of those antiabortion “libertarians”?

    You betcha!

    While Gary himself is personally pro-choice up until the point of fetal viability, he understands the proper role of government, and would return the abortion issue back to the 50 states to decide, as the US Constitution mandates. In order to put the abortion issue back under the proper jurisdiction, Gary would nominate judges who adhere to the original intent of the Constitution, so that Roe v. Wade could be overturned.

    He also gives a shout out to Ron Paul:

    Gary has stated that if Congress decides the present central banking system needs to be replaced by a free market in banking, he would sign such a bill into law. Gary also understands the arguments for a commodity-based monetary standard, and would approve such legislation. . . Gary also supports the idea of a free market in money, by legalizing competing currencies.

    Gold standard, abolish the Fed, and what? Free market monetary systems? How the fuck would that work?

  77. 77

    @eemom:

    He is officially pro choice, but not all that passionately from what I can gather.

  78. 78
    Cyrus says:

    @birthmarker:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ: E.D. is saying that would be a republican, dude.

    That level of hackish sophistry is about what I’d expect from a contributor to the Examiner, yeah.

    “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone. “It means just what I choose it to mean – neither more or less.”
    “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.”
    “The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master – that’s all.”

  79. 79
    kay says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    Ah yes, Mitch “The Iraq War will cost $1.95” Daniels

    Very good.

    Noted fiscal conservative Dennis J. Kucinich was much closer on the cost of the Iraq War than Mitch ‘Budget Master’ Daniels. Kuchinich said 1.6 trillion “worst case”, total cost: invasion, occupation and associated costs. In January of 2003.

  80. 80
    Cacti says:

    While Gary himself is personally pro-choice up until the point of fetal viability, he understands the proper role of government, and would return the abortion issue back to the 50 states to decide, as the US Constitution mandates.

    Yes, the US Constitution mandates that States and municipalities get to decide if women have autonomy over their own bodies.

    It’s in Article II, Section 4, Jackson 5.

  81. 81
    eemom says:

    This new poster has all this Cole-approved “cred.”

    I think this is a good thing. We are finally once and for all going to be able to determine whether there really is such a thing as a sane and reasonable person who voluntarily associates themselves with the republican party of 2010.

  82. 82
    Mark says:

    Newt spoke to his character decades ago when he dumped his wife because she had cancer. Anybody who changed their mind about him now is willfully blind.

  83. 83
    fraught says:

    @General Stuck: Yeah, that’s the ticket. You be the good cop, the rest of us will be the bad cops. We’ll turn this guy.

  84. 84
    Cacti says:

    @eemom:

    I think this is a good thing. We are finally once and for all going to be able to determine whether there really is such a thing as a sane and reasonable person who voluntarily associates themselves with the republican party of 2010.

    Well, since he already said that Newt’s bigoted demagoguery over the NYC community center Mosque doesn’t “bother me so much”…

    I’d say the signs point to “No”.

  85. 85
    Corner Stone says:

    @Zifnab:

    Spending is a Congressional issue. If the Senate and the House want to pass war funding in the Defense bill, they are free to do so. You can’t seriously blame the President for requesting money.

    I agree, as far as this goes. But the $34B is completely in line with President Obama’s strategy in Afghanistan. An additional 30K troops + untold contractors?
    He is clearly not outside the loop here.

  86. 86
    jacy says:

    @geg6:

    I tend to think of libertarians as basically romantic 13-year-old girls who have yet to get their hearts broken. See McCardle, Megan. They inhabit a fantasy world worthy of Jerry Bruckheimer.

    Of course you have the special class of “libertarians” like Rand Paul, who are just crypto-sociopaths who don’t want to call themselves Republicans.

  87. 87
    Corner Stone says:

    @Svensker:

    Please don’t say this. It is a Pet Peeve of mine. The word is “voila.”

    What about the old showman’s term for revealing something previously undisplayed?
    As in “Wal-lah!

    How else can I help you?

  88. 88
  89. 89
    one two seven says:

    He’s a Tea Party republitarian whose running for prez in ‘12 on a platform of absolutely impossible “hard choices” that sound really good but have about as much chance of happening as snow in Alabama today. Things like cutting medicare and social security, adopting a flat tax, doing away with the Dept of Education, etc, etc, etc. I’m sure he’s making a nice living running for office and selling his book.

    What about these things “sound really good”? Sounds like a nightmare to me.

    Balloon Juice was my refuge from the insane. If this is direction we’re heading in, I might need to start looking around for a new internetz home.

  90. 90
    Mark says:

    As for Gary Johnson, he coined the phrase “Cocaine is a hell of a drug.” It was not Dave Chappelle.

    “What I understood when I did cocaine was why people got hooked on cocaine,” [Johnson] said. “Every time I’ve done it it’s been, ‘Whoa, I’m going to get into trouble.’ “

  91. 91
    robert green says:

    if this site is going to devolve into discussions of whether or not newt gingrich is or isn’t one of the worst people in modern…anything, you can count me out.

    e.d., if you can’t figure out that every day you thought newt gingrich was a smart or relevant thinker was a day that you were being a total fucking moron, you don’t deserve to grace this site with your presence. offense intended.

    now please, stop wasting valuable blog space.

  92. 92
    Sly says:

    @Mark S.:

    Gold standard, abolish the Fed, and what? Free market monetary systems? How the fuck would that work?

    It doesn’t have to, because it is a model that depends entirely on theology. The Austrian School is the Flat Earth Society of modern economics.

  93. 93
    Hunter Gathers says:

    @kay: I never though it was possible, but Daniels has turned that state into a bigger shithole than it was when I left in 2006. Of course, anyone who travels beyond The House That Manning Built can tell you that.

  94. 94
    licensed to kill time says:

    @Svensker:

    See here for “wallah”, though I am not at all sure that most people who type it that way are doing so knowingly.

  95. 95
    eemom says:

    @Cacti:

    I’d say the signs point to “No”.

    I agree, but I’m trying to keep an open mind.

    ETA: Also I think we’re supposed to be polite to the gentleman. I could be wrong, of course.

  96. 96
    NobodySpecial says:

    @TooManyJens: You can get Drug War sanity a hell of a lot easier than looking for it in Republicans. Plus you don’t get the associated womanhate in most cases.

  97. 97
    Corner Stone says:

    @Slippy: Now you’re just talking nonsense. If we don’t do something very quickly about this unsustainable deficit we will get our bond rating cut. That will cause borrowing costs and interest on debt to go through the roof. Hence, the rise of inevitable inflation.
    As for job creation, the reason we’re not seeing more jobs come online is because business owners and CEOs are displaying a hesitancy about the situation going forward and are not investing in their companies. We need to bring stability to this situation by reducing the deficit and giving them a clear path forward.
    That will allow them to have confidence in the economy, start hiring and the new hires will have money to spend.
    It’s pretty simple really.

  98. 98
    Svensker says:

    @Corner Stone:

    What about the old showman’s term for revealing something previously undisplayed?
    As in “Wal-lah!

    That is spelled “voila”. The “v” is pronounced with the lips slightly parted, so it sounds almost like “wallah”, but it isn’t.

  99. 99
    TooManyJens says:

    @NobodySpecial: Well, like I said, I didn’t know anything else about him. Nothing I’ve heard since sounds encouraging in the slightest.

    (Although I’d love to know where I can get Drug War sanity from elected or recently-elected officials. Doesn’t seem to be much on offer out there.)

  100. 100
    MattR says:

    @Cacti:

    Well, since he already said that Newt’s bigoted demagoguery over the NYC community center Mosque doesn’t “bother me so much”

    huh? Here is what ED Kain said:

    It’s not his pandering over the Ground Zero Mosque that bothers me so much (though it does)

    Sounds like he is trying to say that is not his biggest complaint about Newt, but it is still on the list of complaints. It is kinda sad to see everyone jump all over ED for minor nits like this instead of focusing on the broader areas of agreement or areas of disagreement that are significant.

  101. 101
    orogeny says:

    @one two seven:

    Sorry…that should have been “sounds really good to the republican base”

    I’m crazy, but not that crazy.

  102. 102
    SRW1 says:

    “… attempts to paint the Obama administration as a ‘secular-socialist machine’”

    Sorry, I don’t really follow Newt’s idea factory. What kind of babble is a ‘secular-socialist machine’? Isn’t ‘secular-socialist’ a hendiadyoin?

  103. 103
    eemom says:

    Isn’t Wallah a city in Washington state?

  104. 104
    John S. says:

    @geg6:

    That didn’t take very long, did it?

  105. 105
    Svensker says:

    @licensed to kill time:

    See here for “wallah”, though I am not at all sure that most people who type it that way are doing so knowingly.

    Possible, though doubtful to me, since the way I’ve always heard it used – including Corner Stone’s use upthread — is the same as “voila”, i.e. “used to call attention, to express satisfaction or approval, or to suggest an appearance as if by magic.”

    I see “wallah” all the time now and predict that it will become a new American English word, replacing its French predecessor. But I’m fighting the good conservative fight against it!

  106. 106
    Nellcote says:

    @TooManyJens:

    He suggests that drug abuse be treated as a health issue and not as a criminal issue.

    Which is pointless without HCR…which he wouldn’t vote for.

  107. 107
    Svensker says:

    @eemom:

    Isn’t Wallah a city in Washington state?

    Deck us all with Boston Charlie,
    Walla Walla, Wash., an’ Kalamazoo!
    Nora’s freezin’ on the trolley,
    swaller dollar cauliflower alleygaroo!

    (from the immortal Pogo)

  108. 108
    Raenelle says:

    Foreign policy differences cut across party lines, and neither the right nor the left has any monopoly on smarts or character.

    The big distinction, aside from the current phenomenon of a slashed-earth GOP, is free market v. socialism. And I just don’t understand how a free marketeer can avoid the primary contradiction of capitalism–that capitalism IS private ownership of the means of production, its engine IS private accumulation, that its ethics IS private vices, public virtue, and thus when faced with a choice between my own welfare and everyone else’s, I am SUPPOSED TO choose mine.

    BP wasn’t unethical. BP is doing exactly what it is supposed to do–maximize profit and fuck everyone else. Those are the exact rules, and shoulda, coulda, oughta, has nothing to do with it. So, how do you justify laissez-faire, how do you justify opposition to government regulations and controls, when capitalism doesn’t produce public virtue, when the whole reason for allowing private vice disappears.

  109. 109
    fraught says:

    @Svensker: My hero!

  110. 110
    Corner Stone says:

    @Svensker: where do you stand on the bloodfeud that is “caddy corner” vs “catty corner”?

  111. 111
    one two seven says:

    Sorry…that should have been “sounds really good to the republican base”

    I’m crazy, but not that crazy.

    OK, your comment makes alot more sense now! I’ve just heard that phrase from alot of otherwise sympathetic people re: libertarians, “it sounds really good, but it would never work in real life.”

  112. 112
    MattR says:

    @Corner Stone:

    @Svensker: where do you stand on the bloodfeud that is “caddy corner” vs “catty corner”?

    Uh oh. I always thought it was “kitty corner”.

  113. 113
    kindness says:

    ‘Character’? ‘Character’?!?

    Here we are referring to a man who divorced two wives because he had mistresses that were better for him all the while taking the high holy moral ground and trying to impeach a sitting president for getting a blow job from a woman who wasn’t his wife.

    I won’t even go into his conversion to Catholicism wrt his love of infidelity.

    Newt has no ‘character’. Newt has no honor. Newt only has & needs Newt.

  114. 114
    Corner Stone says:

    @MattR: Blasphemer!!

  115. 115
    Svensker says:

    @Corner Stone:

    where do you stand on the bloodfeud that is “caddy corner” vs “catty corner”?

    NEVER “caddy corner”. I grew up on “kitty-corner’ which is more correct: Etymology: kitty-corner alteration of cater-corner, from obsolete cater (four) + corner.

    “Caddy corner” is like saying you “shutter” when the wind blows cold, another new and improved shift I’m seeing more and more. Not liking it much, either!

  116. 116
    MikeJ says:

    @MattR:To keep everyone arguing, a list of alternates at the bottom of this page.

    And where does cattywhumpus fit in here?

  117. 117
    taterstick says:

    “to our very own Barack Obama whose own devotion to the war in Afghanistan (or is it an Overseas Contingency Operation?) will likely be one of the great tragedies of his legacy.”

    Okay. That does it for me. You are apparently a republican Firebagger of the first order. I don’t need to read anymore.

    Fuck off, troll.

  118. 118
    licensed to kill time says:

    @Svensker:

    @matoko_chan: is the only person I have seen here who uses ‘wallah’ properly. I agree that most folks are misspelling voila. I have spent time in Arabic speaking countries where it is a common expression, mostly used in the sense of “I swear it’s true!” or sometimes in amazement, sort of like “holy shit!”.

  119. 119
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @birthmarker:

    E.D. is saying that would be a republican, dude.

    Surprisingly, I got that. I’m asking him to show his work. An anti-MIC candidate has as much chance of leading today’s GOP as Andrew Sullivan does of becoming Pope Emo the 1st. But in the longer run it isn’t impossible – stranger things have happened in American political history, like the party of Grover Cleveland producing first the Wilson administration and then FDR. So I’m asking, how do we get from where we are now to his hypothetical? I want to hear EDK’s roadmap.

    Who knows, maybe it might even be something to work towards.

  120. 120
    Svensker says:

    @MattR:

    See 112. :)

  121. 121
    Paris says:

    “Gary would be open to a non-income tax based system, and believes a flat tax may be a simpler and less expensive alternative to the current federal income tax”

    He can believe it but he would be wrong.

  122. 122
    orogeny says:

    @one two seven:

    Libertarianism is a lot like communism; they can sound good in theory and would probably be good systems to live under if it weren’t for the damned people. Throw in the human factor and they both become crocks of shit.

  123. 123
    Mark S. says:

    @Corner Stone:

    What are you talking about? It is kitty corner. Only people who think Mitch Daniels has interesting ideas (but are still a little worried about his foreign policy) would say catty corner.

  124. 124
    aimai says:

    There’s another W’allah which is an exclamation of surprise using the name “Allah.” I use that.

    But on the question of sane/insane conservatives at this point in our political history I’d actually rather deal with an honest religious and racial bigot than a soi disant libertarian. I’m anti the drug war too but to excuse every other form of lunacy espoused by this Gary Johnson guy on the strength of that is typical of modern day libertarians. Ending the drug war while also ending social security, medicare, abortion and everything else and removing regulation in order to free up large corporations is a recipe for disaster. I don’t care from what principles you think you operate. If you think that principles matter more than reality you deserve to be left alone on a desert island with only a large corporation that produces cans of food, and no way to get a can opener and no bargaining power.

    aimai

  125. 125
    Cat Lady says:

    @robert green:

    Co-sign. Newt Gingrich. Even his fucking name is a pustule on the English language.

  126. 126
    eemom says:

    Fuck off, troll.

    ok, I guess I was wrong about that “polite” thing.

  127. 127
    Svensker says:

    @MikeJ:

    And where does cattywhumpus fit in here?

    My mom always used to say that and I thought (and still do think) it was hilarious. But THANK YOU for that link — I had no idea it had the same etymology as cattycorner (which apparently is also correct as “caddycorner” so I’ll go hang my head or something).

    Also, too, Newt is a dick. Back when I was a conservative in the 90s I thought so. And, wallah!, still do.

  128. 128
    orogeny says:

    I think it started out as kitty-corner, but as the phrase matured it became catty-corner.

  129. 129
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    It is kinda sad to see everyone jump all over ED for minor nits like this instead of focusing on the broader areas of agreement or areas of disagreement that are significant.

    I should have added to my post…

    Someone will pull out the old “taken out of context” saw in 3…2…1

  130. 130
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @MattR: IIRC it’s technically “catercorner,” because you’re going from the 1st corner to the 4th corner.

    And “wallah” is totally wrong. Like Svensker says, it’s “voilà,” meaning, in essence, “See there!”

  131. 131
    jfxgillis says:

    Erik:

    GRATZ on the new gig!!!

    By the way, if I may, I’ll paraphrase the Good Doctor Johnson when I respond to John’s description of you by suggesting that the part of you that is sane is not conservative and the part of you that is conservative is not sane.

    :^{)>

  132. 132
    eemom says:

    @aimai:

    honest religious and racial bigot

    I don’t think a racial bigot can be properly be called “honest.” Innocently ignorant, maybe.

    OTOH there are religious fanatics who who honestly believe abortion is murder.

  133. 133
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Too slow again. Curse you, Svensker! I express my surprise accordingly.

  134. 134
    suzanne says:

    @Corner Stone: “Kitty corner”. Duh.

  135. 135
    MikeJ says:

    @Cacti: You didn’t take him out of context, you changed what he said. What he said was comparative “doesn’t bother me as much as…” What you claimed he said was “doesn’t bother me.”

  136. 136
    Mark S. says:

    And I’d be willing to bet a billion dollars in free market currency that Mitch Daniels is every bit as much of a neocon as every Republican not named Ron Paul. Bombing brown people is second only to cutting taxes in today’s GOP.

  137. 137
    Albatrossity says:

    Johnson seems to be talking out of both orifices re abortion rights. From an interview in Playboy in 2000

    PLAYBOY: Where do you stand on abortion rights?
    JOHNSON: It should be left up to the woman. If my daughter were pregnant and she came to me and asked me what she ought to do, I would advise her to have the child. But I would not for a minute pretend that I should make that decision for her or any other woman.

    If that is really still his position, he’ll never win a rethuglican primary in my lifetime!

  138. 138
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mark S.:

    It is kitty corner. Only people who think Mitch Daniels has interesting ideas (but are still a little worried about his foreign policy) would say catty corner.

    Well then I’m happy I say caddy corner. I would not have survived my misanthropic childhood if i had ever referred to something as “kitty corner”. I would’ve been drawn and quartered using pink granny panties as the binding.

  139. 139
    freelancer says:

    Anyone up for a game of libertarian bingo?

  140. 140
    suzanne says:

    @Svensker:

    “Caddy corner” is like saying you “shutter” when the wind blows cold, another new and improved shift I’m seeing more and more. Not liking it much, either!

    I’m more personally irritated by “free reign”, “baited breath”, and “I could care less” when you mean that you could NOT, in fact, care less.

    On the plus side, I’m seeing and hearing “feckless” a whole lot more in common discourse, and that always makes the seven-year-old inside me smirk.

  141. 141
    Midnight Marauder says:

    I like Mitch Daniels, too, but I haven’t been paying close enough attention to his foreign policy to say for sure.

    Then what you should really say is that you haven’t been paying attention period:

    Daniels was Bush’s head of the Office of Management and Budget from 2001-2003 (what happened to the surplus inherited from Bill Clinton during those years is a separate story). He was responsible for forecasting the budget in the event of a war with Iraq. His number came in at fifty to sixty billion dollars. Compared to what some experts were forecasting, it was an astonishingly low figure. But even Daniels’s projection was too much for the Bush White House, which was intent on keeping unpleasant scenarios about the war out of the public eye, and Daniels’s own spokesman, Trent Duffy, was sent out to talk the number down. Lawrence Lindsey, Bush’s top economic adviser, had said the war could cost as much as two hundred billion, and Daniels had dismissed the figure as “very, very high.” As for the cost of rebuilding Iraq, by April of 2003—with the war already under way—O.M.B. had asked Congress for the paltry sum of 2.5 billion. By the end of last year, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan had cost over a trillion dollars.
    __
    A lot of people underestimated the consequences of that war. What worries me is that Daniels’s projection was the budgetary equivalent of the Rumsfeld Pentagon’s failure to commit enough troops for the occupation. “Very, very high” reminds me of what Paul Wolfowitz said in response to General Eric Shinseki’s estimate that stabilizing Iraq would take several hundred thousand troops: he dismissed it as “wildly off the mark.” Wolfowitz and Daniels weren’t just mistaken. They were guaranteeing that the Administration wouldn’t be ready if things went wrong. They were contributing directly to the disaster that followed the fall of Saddam. And they were acting out of ideological conviction or bureaucratic loyalty rather than cold analytical judgment. In short, when the stakes were as high as possible, Daniels showed very little independence or common sense, the qualities that Douthat credits him with.
    __
    And Daniels persisted in his refusal to face reality even after the war began. In the spring and summer of 2003, with Baghdad looted and Iraq’s infrastructure disintegrating and Iraqis losing patience and the insurgency just beginning, around the Republican Palace, where the Americans of the Coalition Provisional Authority were trying to bring some order to Iraq, the name Mitch Daniels was often mentioned, without much love. C.P.A. officials faulted the O.M.B. man back in Washington for nickel-and-diming their every request for money. The Americans started out with just twenty-five thousand dollars to resurrect Iraq’s collapsed ministries, and even this meager sum came not as cash but in the form of grants that required several weeks for approval. American officials were desperate for money before the window of opportunity closed. One of them told me, “In post-conflict reconstruction, you need to have the ability to deliver the resources right away. People in a desperate situation need help. Boy, that’s a blindingly obvious insight. The next thing is that if you’re not giving them help, they’re going to go somewhere else.”

    In no way does Mitch Daniels possess any credibility on foreign policy or budgetary matters. He is as credible on these issues as Newt Gingrich is an intellectual heavyweight.

  142. 142
    Cyrus says:

    @MattR:

    Sounds like he is trying to say that is not his biggest complaint about Newt, but it is still on the list of complaints. It is kinda sad to see everyone jump all over ED for minor nits like this instead of focusing on the broader areas of agreement or areas of disagreement that are significant.

    Fair enough, Kain never said he liked Gingrich, that’s a relief. But it’s really damning with faint praise. Likewise, as someone pointed out in the thread where he introduced himself, Kain didn’t say in an editorial last week that he approves of Breitbart’s nearly libelous ratfucking, he just says “Whether or not Breitbart was right or wrong to post the video”. Kain can’t decide if Breitbart was wrong to edit something deceptively (or knowingly post something someone else had deceptively edited, but, same difference)? He thinks it’s unimportant? He thinks the end in that case is sufficient to justify the means? Or maybe Kain does disapprove, but didn’t want to say so because his audience (and editor?) would disagree?

    Which is it? Whichever you want! Who knows! Who cares! Great new contributor we’ve got here. He never comes right out and says he’d vote for Gingrich if he wins the nomination, or if he approves of deception when it’s by a Republican against a Democrat, he just leaves us guessing. There’s intellectual honesty for you!

  143. 143
    taylormattd says:

    OK, I didn’t say anything in the other threads out of respect for John, but jesus christ, really?

    Did you have to pick somebody to troll the front page with stupid fucking “well yes, I’m conservative, but I’m one of those old-fashioned ‘reasonable’ conservaties” shit?

    THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A ‘REASONABLE’ CONSERVATIVE.

    None.

    Here he is, fapping over a shitty, do-nothing, Ron Paul-like ex-governor. And talking about how “limited government” is good.

    One recommendation. If you are going to have some conservative post here about “limited government”, please let them post only about the horrors of police state tactics or the defense department.

  144. 144
    Cacti says:

    @MikeJ:

    It’s not his pandering over the Ground Zero Mosque that bothers me so much (though it does);

    Gingrich’s bigotry bothers him, just not so much.

    Go hide behind context with your new BFF.

  145. 145
    Corner Stone says:

    I actually don’t care about wallah vs voila, or the hive-inducing use of “kitty corner”.
    Just think it’s a far more relevant discussion than anything having to do with Newt or at this point anything written by Mr. Kain.

  146. 146

    But I think at one point a lot of conservatives viewed him as the moderate, rational, wonkish leader they’d like to have…

    I’m sorry, I must have missed out when the crack pipe was passed around.

  147. 147
    taylormattd says:

    @tomvox1: Thank you.

  148. 148
    taterstick says:

    @eemom: I WAS polite. I gave him time to hang himself. It’s not my fault that it only took a couple of hours for it to happen.

  149. 149
    MikeJ says:

    @Cacti: Though it does. Though it does. Though it does.

    Look, anybody who would support Mitch Daniels is an idiot, but can’t we at least be honest about why he’s an idiot? You are being dishonest. It’s not spin, it’s not shading things, it’s lying.

  150. 150
    Leo says:

    @MattR: Exactly. It’s just dishonest to interpret that sentence as saying that E.D. doesn’t object to Newt’s mosque-baiting.

  151. 151
    Kyle says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    Ah yes, Mitch “The Iraq War will cost $1.95” Daniels.

    I’m stealing that : )

  152. 152
    Corner Stone says:

    @MikeJ:

    And where does cattywhumpus fit in here?

    That’s for when the shit really hits the fan.

  153. 153
    Cacti says:

    @MikeJ:

    Though it does. Though it does. Though it does.

    It’s not his pandering… that bothers me so much

    It’s not his pandering… that bothers me so much

    It’s not his pandering… that bothers me so much

    Gingrich’s pandering doesn’t bother him so much. It does (in parentheses), but to what extent is left a mystery to the reader.

    But keep going to the mat for this equivocation if it makes you feel all Fair and Balanced inside.

  154. 154
    mangrilla says:

    I’ve been reading this blog for a few years now, and one of my favorite facets of it has been the complete lack of respect John gives to the intellectually corrupt Glibertarians. Now, I know that John used to be a conservative (I would say in high school, I described myself as libertarian, but I would also say that I spent about 5 minutes thinking about politics in the entirety of my high school career, which seems fairly typical of a libertarian), but I’d hoped that the site would stay away from that past.

    That said, it’s pretty disappointing that John’s giving the front page over to someone who obviously tows the libertarian line… Let’s take a look at Johnson’s campaign site for an insight on the man that our new front-page poster would take over “every other candidate”:

    Entitlements – “Gary understands that the federal government’s entitlement programs–Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid–are essentially bankrupt, and that immediate reforms and spending cuts must be made. ”

    Great, someone who pushes the same ridiculous “SOCIAL SECURITY IS BANKRUPT! CUT IT!” BS. I definitely love a candidate who belongs on the catfood commission.

    Taxes – LOWER TAXES! “As President, Gary would be open to a non-income tax based system, and believes a flat tax may be a simpler and less expensive alternative to the current federal income tax. ” Great! Regressive tax, fuck the poor!

    Smaller Government – “He believes that “every law passed is a little bite out of freedom,” and that removing government regulation unleashes the forces of the free market that raise our living standards.” YES! THE INVISIBLE HAND OF THE MARKET SOLVES EVERYTHING!

    I bet that old Gary Johnson, who supported Ron Paul for president in ’08, would probably agree with Rand’s recent quote: “The bottom line is: I’m not an expert, so don’t give me the power in Washington to be making rules,” Paul said at a recent campaign stop in response to questions about April’s deadly mining explosion in West Virginia. “You live here, and you have to work in the mines. You’d try to make good rules to protect your people here. If you don’t, I’m thinking that no one will apply for those jobs.” These people that push the line that government regulation is inherently bad are just outright charlatans or complete morons.

    I was interested when John said he was bringing in a rational conservative to post on the site, because frankly, I didn’t think such a thing existed. Now that I’ve seen this post, I realize that they definitely don’t.

  155. 155
    kay says:

    @Midnight Marauder:

    It’s not just the recklessness and dishonesty on Iraq.

    Daniels’ state record is already another conservative myth in the making. I mean, we’re now actually creating the myth of competence in the midst of the disaster.
    We used to wait until the person had left office to do that, right?

    This is the result of Daniels last privatization experiment in Indiana, May of this year:

    State agency, IBM sue each other over $1.3B deal
    Cases stem from welfare privatization problems.

    Indiana sued former welfare privatization partner IBM Corp. for more than $1.3 billion on Thursday for breach of contract and actions that included denying Medicaid to a dying cancer patient and a nun.
    Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM countered with its own lawsuit, asking for $52.8 million in deferred payments and equipment costs that it said the state still owed it from the technology giant’s canceled 10-year, $1.37 billion deal to automate intake for Medicaid, food stamps and other benefits
    In its lawsuit, the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration is seeking to recover the $437.6 million it paid IBM through Jan. 31, plus the costs of any third-party lawsuits, federal penalties, and state employee overtime incurred as a result of the deal.
    The state is seeking triple damages, or more than $1.3 billion, under state law. It accused IBM of intentionally denying benefits to clients to make its performance appear better and giving the state agency false and misleading information.

    Anyone may “like” Mitch Daniels, but can conservatives please stop spinning this fantasy about him? His record is decidedly mixed, and the problems are on money management issues.

  156. 156
    MattR says:

    @Cyrus:

    Likewise, as someone pointed out in the thread where he introduced himself, Kain didn’t say in an editorial last week that he approves of Breitbart’s nearly libelous ratfucking, he just says “Whether or not Breitbart was right or wrong to post the video”. Kain can’t decide if Breitbart was wrong to edit something deceptively (or knowingly post something someone else had deceptively edited, but, same difference)? He thinks it’s unimportant? He thinks the end in that case is sufficient to justify the means? Or maybe Kain does disapprove, but didn’t want to say so because his audience (and editor?) would disagree?

    To me this is another useless nit to pick. The rightness or wrongness of posting the video was not central to Kain’s point so it is not surprising that he avoid that particular controversy to make his particular point. If John Cole had written the same thing, nobody here would be jumping all over him because they know what he believes. But since E.D. is a conservative, I guess we should just assume that all of his motives are impure.

  157. 157
    Mike G says:

    @Corner Stone:

    We need to bring stability to this situation by reducing the deficit and giving them a clear path forward.
    That will allow them to have confidence in the economy, start hiring and the new hires will have money to spend.
    It’s pretty simple really.

    In other words, what Bill Clinton did.

    Then Bush came into office and pissed away all that hard, boring fiscal restraint in a drunken orgy of tax cuts, war and (don’t forget) fat increases in non-security-related domestic spending. And the Repigs loved him for it.

    The problem with doing this in a severe recession is that demand is critically low, and this will impact it. Which is another lesson in why you’re supposed to run a quasi-balanced budget when not in a recession, instead of pissing it all away, Repig-style — so you have ammunition for deficit-stimulus in hard times.

  158. 158
    4tehlulz says:

    A tad OT, but you know the GOP has totally lost its fucking mind when Alan Keyes is a voice for sanity:

    “Well, let me see,” Keyes added sarcastically, “If citizenship is not a birthright then it must be a grant of the government. And if it is a grant of the government, it could curtail that grant in all the ways that fascists and totalitarians always want to.”

  159. 159
    MattR says:

    @Cacti: So basically anyone who thinks the MIC and our constant state of war are a bigger problem than the Ground Zero mosque controversy is not reasonable or sane?

  160. 160
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    To me this is another useless nit to pick. The rightness or wrongness of posting the video was not central to Kain’s point so it is not surprising that he avoid that particular controversy to make his particular point.

    Or it could be more mealy-mouthed equivocating over right wing malfeasance.

  161. 161
    MattR says:

    @Cacti:

    Or it could be more mealy-mouthed equivocating over right wing malfeasance

    Yes it could be. But I am not going to just assume that either possibility is definitely right.

  162. 162
    matoko_chan says:

    @aimai: yeah, wallah is arabic slang for “AMG!” or “orly?” depending on context.
    entirely different from voila, which means “behold!”
    i have never seen the two confused before….im so disappointed….i thought Cornerstone was reverting.
    :)

  163. 163

    Excellent post on how the 14th Amendment forms the basis for all of our anti discrimination laws and the can of worms that will be created by repealing it…

    http://hegemommy.com/the-rise-of-the-old-south/

    Someone told me that “corporate personhood” is also based on the 14th Amendment. Anyone know if that is true?

  164. 164
    matoko_chan says:

    And….wallah….did you guyz look at Gary’s toupe?
    He can never be president– E.D. Kain step away from the crackpipe.

  165. 165
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    Yes it could be. But I am not going to just assume that either possibility is definitely right.

    Just as your new bud doesn’t assume that Breitbart was definitely wrong for leaking a doctored video.

  166. 166
    MattR says:

    @Cacti:

    Just as your new bud doesn’t assume that Breitbart was definitely wrong for leaking a doctored video.

    Except of course, that E.D never assumes that. He merely says it is irrelevant to the point he is making.

    If I say “whether you believe life starts at conception or at viability, can’t we all agree that the life needs to be protected after birth”, am I making any assumptions or declarations about when I believe life begins?

    @Southern Beale: Is anyone actually talking about doing a more comprehensive repeal of the 14th Ammendment that just the “birthright citizenship” provision? It would not surprise me to hear, I just haven’t paid enough attention to the details to know for sure.

  167. 167
    Mary G says:

    @General Stuck: This. It bothers me, as a person who reads right and left blogs, to hear all the “libtards” and “repubtards” bashing by both sides. Balloon Juice has always struck me as the kind of place with better standards of snark and insult-ery. One thing, that particularly bugs me, as a person of size, is the number of people who bash Newt because he’s fat. Fat does not equal stupid. Newt would be stupid if he lost 150 pounds.

  168. 168
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @MattR:

    So basically anyone who thinks the MIC and our constant state of war are a bigger problem than the Ground Zero mosque controversy is not reasonable or sane?

    A reasonable and sane person would IMHO rank the former ahead of the latter.

    On the other hand somebody who doesn’t seriously question whether there might be an organic connection between these two things (Militarism? Tribalism? Joined at the hip? Quelle surprise!) and thus to fight against one of them is to also fight against the other, well let’s just say that person is probably unobservant and analytically dense to the point where they drive through the McDonald’s on Free Botulism Day and their biggest concern is what kind of kids toy did they get in their Happy Meal, and is the tie-in movie is still playing in regular theaters or has it hit the dollar circuit by now?

  169. 169
    matoko_chan says:

    In google image theres before and after pictures when Gary was fat and had male pattern baldness.
    no, E.D. the SNL skit possibilties are just horrific.
    you don’t want to go there.

  170. 170
    matoko_chan says:

    @Mary G: unfortunately, fat does equate to unelectable in the age of terebi.
    like why isn’t E.D. pimping Chris Christie?
    Because that guy is repulsively obese.

  171. 171
    dmsilev says:

    @4tehlulz: I saw that. I think we’ve reached Peak Wingnut, which I will define as “Leading Republicans advocate ideas that Alan Keyes finds too extreme.”.

    dms

  172. 172
    Three-nineteen says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

    Exactly. We have to keep hating them over here so we can keep killing them over there.

  173. 173
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    Except of course, that E.D never assumes that. He merely says it is irrelevant to the point he is making.

    You mean this point:

    Shirley Sherrod doesn’t have a case against Andrew Breitbart

    Hmmm…if that’s the point, I’d say Whether Breitbart was right or wrong for leaking the video is fairly germane to it.

    Damn, this “reasonable” conservative just keeps getting better and better.

  174. 174
    spudvol says:

    At least Cole left his pets a chew toy, and no, I’m not talking about Lily and Rosie.

  175. 175
    Cacti says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

    A reasonable and sane person would IMHO rank the former ahead of the latter.

    I’d say it’s quite reasonable to find a POTUS hopeful actively fomenting religious bigotry and efforts to impede the First Amendment rights of a disfavored group to be as bothersome as objections to hawkish/interventionist policies of a candidate.

    When rights get taken away from everyone, it doesn’t start with the popular kids.

  176. 176
    asiangrrlMN says:

    @Svensker: Huh. I thought he was using the actual word wallah, albeit incorrectly. My bad.

    Gingrich isn’t even that smart. I mean, I come from a family of academics who are truly intimidating, and…oh, sorry. Slipped into my McArdle (like a girdle?) for a moment there.

  177. 177
    thomas says:

    @Mark: \
    Newt, the repug idea man. Has his piled high and deep from some east shabib state. probably wrote his dissertation on Henry VII, and took lessons on how to treat women.

  178. 178
    Midnight Marauder says:

    @MattR:

    But since E.D. is a conservative, I guess we should just assume that all of his motives are impure.

    Um…yeah. This is the United States of America. That’s generally how it plays out.

  179. 179
    jacy says:

    @freelancer:

    I read that as “libertarian bongos” after which I imagined a bunch of libertarians sitting around a hazy jazz club in berets and black turtlenecks, snapping their fingers. Which probably isn’t that far off.

    In college I was enamored of a boy of the libertarian persuasion. Alas, I knew our love was never meant to be, because by that time I had developed critical thinking. He sure was cute though.

  180. 180
    Violet says:

    @Svensker:

    Please don’t say this. It is a Pet Peeve of mine. The word is “voila.”

    Me too. “Wallah” is something entirely different as asiangrrlMN pointed out.

  181. 181
    Cyrus says:

    @MattR:

    Or it could be more mealy-mouthed equivocating over right wing malfeasance

    Yes it could be. But I am not going to just assume that either possibility is definitely right.

    First of all, as Cacti points out, if Kain honestly believes that Breitbart’s conduct is irrelevant to his own point, then he’s a moron. Second, again, he works for the Examiner; I admit I’m not familiar with Kain himself, but I am pretty familiar with that paper, and it falls somewhere between the Washington Times and Newmax on the spectrum of impartial credibility.

  182. 182
    John S. says:

    @Cacti:

    That’s an awesome article. I like where Mr. Kain asks:

    First off, should bloggers face lawsuits for posting misleading information about political figures or anyone else for that matter?

    I guess the libertarian definition of free speech allows you to just make shit up about people that leads to them suffering compensatory (or other) damages without suffering any consequences whatsoever. And here I thought the very concept of libel was anything that was maliciously or damagingly misrepresentative.

    I guess it’s just another extension of the glibertarian worldview. They want unlimited personal freedom, without any personal responsibility. Except when they claim to favor personal responsibility, unless it tramples personal freedom. Or something. I find it to be a pretty naive ideology, and my head can’t keep track of all the contradictions required of the McMegans of the world.

    I think it’s gonna be a tough road ahead for Mr. Kain around here.

  183. 183
    Alex S. says:

    @Jim Pharo:

    I guess that, for now, the smart Republican’s politician is either Mitch Daniels or Gary Johnson, with Jon Huntsman out of the picture.

    About Johnson himself, well there’s no need to make up reasons on why not to like him, because his opposition to Medicare/caid should seal the deal. His social positions are not THAT bad. He’s against late-term abortions, like Obama, and me, if that matters. He’d like to delegate a lot to the states. That could be a blessing, and a curse (for people living in unfortunate states).

    Edit: Something else, Johnson has got no chance to win the presidency. He’d have to bet it all on Nevada, I guess, because he can’t beat Romney in New Hampshire, and he surely can’t win Iowa or South Carolina.

  184. 184
    geg6 says:

    @aimai:

    I like the way you think and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

  185. 185
    Midnight Marauder says:

    @kay:

    Daniels’ state record is already another conservative myth in the making. I mean, we’re now actually creating the myth of competence in the midst of the disaster.
    We used to wait until the person had left office to do that, right?

    Anyone may “like” Mitch Daniels, but can conservatives please stop spinning this fantasy about him? His record is decidedly mixed, and the problems are on money management issues.

    You could not be more spot on with this. Mitch Daniels, more so than John Thune, is the Republican I have my eyes on like a hawk for 2012, because they have been fluffing Daniels’ accomplishments for years now. Sure, John Thune may be the pretty boy, but Mitch Daniels is the one, who, in the words of DougJ:

    I believe they will nominate some ostensibly less frightening and noxious candidate and that all the serious, intellectual conservatives will line up behind that candidate’s plan to voucherzie Social Security in a Burkean gradualist manner.

    That guy is Mitch Daniels.

    “Sane, respectable” conservatives like E.D. Kain talk about how scrupulous and principled and intellectual Daniels is; meanwhile, the following is happening in Indiana:

    A cursory glance at Indiana’s unemployment rate gives you the outlines – 10% unemployment, using the standard U-3 measure. When you look at the bigger picture, it gets even worse. Using the broadest measure – U-6, which includes “marginally attached” workers and those working part-time who would rather be working full-time – more than 18% of Hoosiers can’t find a real job. That means Indiana is worse off than our neighbors in Illinois, Ohio, and Kentucky.
    __
    Just yesterday, the Indianapolis Star ran a piece on how Indiana’s job picture is worse than our neighbors. A recent study by the Brookings Institution’s Hamilton Project shows that Indiana ranks 6th-worst in the nation when they measure declines in employment from November 2007 to May 2010. It’s simply unacceptable for the Governor of the state that ranks 44th in employment growth to be celebrating our nonexistent jobs. The objective reality is that Indiana’s employment growth trails Michigan, Illinois, Ohio, and Kentucky (and almost every other state in the US).

    Oh, and just in case My Man Mitch still had a pulse or a faint shred of credibility left:

    Indiana is one of 26 states who are in debt to the federal government because they can’t afford to pay out their unemployment insurance benefits, according to ProPublica. Indiana’s Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund has been insolvent since at least 2008, and we currently owe almost $2 billion to the federal government for the state’s share of UI benefits. Just a couple of months ago, at Mitch Daniels’ urging, the state postponed a law that would raise UI rates to start paying off that debt.
    __
    March 2010 marked 17 straight months of Indiana’s revenues falling well short of projections.

    Keep fucking that chicken, “intellectual conservatives.”

  186. 186

    Very late to the game, but agree entirely w. Aimai at 121. To give one actual example of Gary Johnson’s worthlessness as a potential national leader, I followed E.D.’s encomium to the point of looking at former Gov. Johnson’s Our America site (a test – the -water kind of production anticipating a national run).

    I looked at a couple of his issue statements: for a clean environment but against carbon tax/cap and trade and so on — typical magic pony stuff. Nothing exceptional here, except as an illustration of the emptiness of GOP claims of policy expertise (even this “best of breed” fella has nothing to say beyond happy slogans, in other words).

    But Johnson’s and I would argue the GOP’s pathology goes much deeper. Without attempting to spend the time it would take to really disassemble the fail here, I did listen to Johnson’s discussion of the Federal Reserve. An anodyne and more or less apple-pie unexceptional call for more transparency served to obscure the real anti-Fed sentiment here, which only came out at the end of Johnson’s video presentation.

    There he noted, scornfully, that between 1913 (the Fed’s founding) and now, the value of a 1913 dollar has dropped to 5 cents. I.e. — the portrait of Washington you have in your pocket would buy you what a nickel in 1913 would have.

    Johnson’s trenchant analysis at that revelation: “Yikes.” (Quoted in full.)

    Is it nonsense? Of course it is.

    Why?

    Because it omits the critical measure of per capita income changes from then to know. In the haste of an afternoon at the office, I haven’t yet dug up the full time series, but just looking at it from 1950 to 2004, US per capita income has risen, in constant 2004 dollars, from $17,077 for men and $6,333 for women to $30,513 and $17,629, respectively over that 54 year period.

    The point: Americans have grown substantially wealthier despite nominal decreases in the value of a dollar, which I think pretty much everyone here already knew.

    The deeper point: Libertarian fixations on the Fed, on the numerology of money, on all kinds of policy bear no relation to reality. Most sentient folks even vaguely literate in economics understands that mild inflation is vastly preferable to deflation, and that policies that end up with a slow increase in nominal prices make for happier economies. Inflation hawkery in the absence of actual inflation, as we see now all around us now, is one of the real threats to job creation and long term economic growth. (See KThug for much more, and or DeLong — but again, everyone here pretty much knows this stuff I think.

    But Gary Johnson either does not, or chooses not to grasp the issue. And E.D. thinks this man is the great polychrome hope of the Republic and the GOP.

    To me, he’s just one more avatar amongst the horde that prefers comfortable internal ideological consistency to testing claims against actual data and historical experience. No more of that, please.

  187. 187
    Ripley says:

    D’oh: Bad stunt double, much discontent. Scolding imminent.

  188. 188
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Cacti:

    It’s not his pandering… that bothers me so much
    __
    Gingrich’s pandering doesn’t bother him so much.

    FWIW, that’s not how I understand the use of that phrase. To me it doesn’t mean that the pandering doesn’t bother him; it simply means that other things bother him (even) more.

  189. 189
    Cacti says:

    @Cyrus:

    First of all, as Cacti points out, if Kain honestly believes that Breitbart’s conduct is irrelevant to his own point, then he’s a moron.

    A lawsuit against Breitbart will be precisely over the point of whether it was right or wrong, under existing defamation law, for him to publish the doctored video of Shirley Sherrod.

  190. 190
    Corner Stone says:

    @matoko_chan: I’m a multi-personae transhumanistic Quellist Sufi 3rd Culturist.
    Insha’Allah.

  191. 191
    scav says:

    @Violet: voila v. wallah? my crew always went for the incontestably wrong: viola!

    nah, couldn’t resist given your name.

  192. 192

    One thing, that particularly bugs me, as a person of size, is the number of people who bash Newt because he’s fat.

    This is a new one on me. I have never seen Newt bashed for being fat. Not saying it doesn’t happen, just saying it doesn’t happen enough for it to cross my radar.

    I see Newt bashed for being a disingenuous moron, and I see him bashed for dumping his cancer-stricken wife for wife number 3 while spouting “morals” crap during the Great Clinton Blow Job Scandal and I’ve seen him bashed for trying to pretend he doesn’t have a lesbian sister.

    Fat, however, is a new one on me. Frankly I never noticed his girth. Now I will have to look.

  193. 193
    Cacti says:

    @John S.:

    I guess the libertarian definition of free speech allows you to just make shit up about people that leads to them suffering compensatory (or other) damages without suffering any consequences whatsoever.

    But Breitbart’s a blogger.

    That makes it okay.

  194. 194
    geg6 says:

    @MattR:

    If John Cole had written the same thing, nobody here would be jumping all over him because they know what he believes.

    This is patently untrue. We jump all over Cole for much, much less than that.

  195. 195
    MattR says:

    @Cacti: OK. The article has a poor headline. I will admit that. It is not just about whether or not Sherrod has a case, but if such a case would be a good thing for the media in general. Here is how it starts:

    I’m not exactly surprised that Shirley Sherrod is planning to sue conservative blogger, Andrew Breitbart, but I do find the whole affair troubling. Liberals and enemies of Breitbart are excited by the news, but I think they fail to grasp its implications.
    __
    First off, should bloggers face lawsuits for posting misleading information about political figures or anyone else for that matter?
    __
    In Britain, libel laws are so lax that bloggers and others in the media are effectively censored by the threat posed by potential lawsuits. Often just the threat of a lawsuit is enough to shut down a potentially controversial report. Whether or not Breitbart was right or wrong to post the video, should he face civil penalties for doing so? What repercussions might this have on the blogosphere and the American media writ large? What does this say about the state of free speech in America?
    __
    Second, Sherrod is very unlikely to win her suit in the first place. …

    It continues with why Sherrod is unllikely to win. But the first part is solely focused on the future implications of bloggers being subject to civil penalties and the chilling effect it could have. From that point of view, the technical “rightness” of Breitbart is irrelevant.

  196. 196
    John S. says:

    To me, he’s just one more avatar amongst the horde that prefers comfortable internal ideological consistency to testing claims against actual data and historical experience.

    Sounds like the classic definition of a libertarian.

  197. 197
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mike G:

    The problem with doing this in a severe recession is that demand is critically low, and this will impact it.

    And I think at that point it’s critical to all tighten our belts a little. If I’m capable of doing it at home I’m not sure why government can take a look around and see some trimming to be done.
    We need to reduce government outlays so our budget numbers will look a little better, then pivot right into small business tax cuts as a way to re-fire the job creation engine. Small businesses are the great pool of employers across the country. We need to take the fat out of the government fire and spread it across incentives for small businesses to start hiring. Government never created one job so we need to focus on private employment for this.
    It seems pretty clear we’re going to need to do something about unfunded entitlements like Social Security as well. The most straight forward path there is to raise retirement age to 70. There just aren’t as many contributors to this broke legacy as there are entitlees.

  198. 198
    John S. says:

    But the first part is solely focused on the future implications of bloggers being subject to civil penalties and the chilling effect it could have.

    What fantasy universe is this where a chilling effect on MAKING SHIT UP is a bad thing? This is pure and utter bullshit. We’re not talking about whistleblowers or people being silenced for speaking truth to power, we’re talking about someone who selectively edited and knowingly altered footage to make an accusation against someone they KNEW HAD NO MERIT.

    Fuck, I need a drink.

  199. 199
    handy says:

    @Corner Stone:

    I hope to Wallah that was a spoof. If so, it was pretty damned good. Especially this part:

    Government never created one job so we need to focus on private employment for this.

  200. 200
    13th Generation says:

    @Mary G

    Well said. Agree with you 100%.

  201. 201
    MattR says:

    @John S.: The issue is whether the threat that someone will claim that you are MAKING SHIT UP will have a chilling effect. (see SLAPP lawsuits) It is a slippery slope argument and not one that I agree with, but it is not completely loony either.

  202. 202
    RareSanity says:

    I am not usually a rabble-rouser around here but, this:

    as far as Newt Gingrich is concerned I find him neither a candidate with a very good chance at winning, or someone who I’d be comfortable having in the Oval Office.

    is absolutely staggering…

    Wouldn’t be comfortable with Newt in the Oval Office? Not comfortable?

    I am not comfortable when my wife asks if I finished that thing she asked me to do, and I completely forgot. I am not comfortable when I think of how Matt Ryan’s season is going to turn out for the Falcons this year.

    Newt actually winning a presidential election, in the United States of America, in the year 2012, is fucking terrifying! Not just because he would be president, but, about the state of affairs in this country for him to have won the election in the first place.

    Wow. Just wow…

  203. 203
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    Whether or not Breitbart was right or wrong to post the video, should he face civil penalties for doing so?

    Whether or not Breitbart was right or wrong to post the video… Is what the Court will decide.

    Should he face civil penalties for doing so…if he what he published is found to be defamatory, he should unequivocally face civil penalties for it.

    The two ideas don’t separate from one another in the context of a civil action for defamation.

  204. 204
    Corner Stone says:

    @handy: Not sure why you would think it is spoof. President Obama has said similar.

    Listen. The bottom line is if we don’t get this deficit under control immediately we’re going to be sucked into an inflationary spiral. After we make constructive effort on reducing the deficit we can decide the appropriate tax cuts to spur long term job growth.

  205. 205
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    The issue is whether the threat that someone will claim that you are MAKING SHIT UP will have a chilling effect.

    Not an issue at all.

    Truth is a complete defense to claims of defamation.

    In defamation cases involving a public figure, the plaintiff would have to also show actual malice on the part of the publisher of defamatory information.

    These aren’t novel legal concepts. They’re covered in every first year Torts class.

  206. 206
    MattR says:

    @Cacti: Ah it is for the court to decide. Just like Prop 8 was for the court to decide. So I guess nobody should bother to post their opinions about what they think should happen in either of those cases beforehand.

  207. 207
    matoko_chan says:

    @Corner Stone:

    I’m a multi-personae transhumanistic Quellist Sufi 3rd Culturist.
    Insha’Allah.

    Brother! I embrace thee. ;)

  208. 208
    MattR says:

    @Cacti: And how much time, energy and money would it take to win that lawsuit? At what cost to the defendant’s reputation? I notice that you cut the part where I mentioned SLAPP suits.

  209. 209
    fraught says:

    @MattR:

    But since E.D. is a conservative, I guess we should just assume that all of his motives are impure.

    OK, if you say so.

  210. 210
    Tone in DC says:

    @4tehlulz:
    Keyes as the Voice of Reason. Another sign that the Apocalypse is upon us.

  211. 211
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @Cacti:
    That’s a fair point.

    My rejoinder is that insofar as these are really separate and distinct issues:

    (a) protecting unpopular groups is why we have an at least nominally independent judiciary – and unfortunately it is there rather than to the executive branch that we’ve looked in times of national peril to protect our rights. If anything, in the past WH has more often than not been on the side of the bigots,

    and

    (b) the disorganized shouting mob of bigots don’t have nuclear weapons, or JDAMs and flying chain guns, for that matter. Our military can get a lot more people killed in a hurry than any other group in the US, and there has been a greater range of behavior (from extreme interventionism to extreme isolationism) in our employment of military force over the span of US history, than there has been in the waxing and waning of popular bigotry over the years. So I’m looking for the low hanging fruit where we have the best chance of getting fewer people killed.

    That is why I view militarism as the greater threat. But I don’t think these are really separate issues – more like different sides of the same pachyderm.

  212. 212
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    I’ve been over this already.

    The public figure rule in defamation protects against abuse by requiring said public figure to show actual malice by the publisher of the defamation. That is, not only must the plaintiff show that the information was false and damaging, but that the publisher knew it was false at the time it was published.

    The rule described has been around for almost 50 years.

  213. 213
    MattR says:

    @Cacti: And so you are saying that it will cost the defendanat zero time, energy or dollars?

  214. 214
    JK says:

    @one two seven

    Balloon Juice was my refuge from the insane. If this is direction we’re heading in, I might need to start looking around for a new internetz home.

    If your need for epistemic closure is that dire, there’s always Hamsher’s place.

  215. 215
    Cacti says:

    Also, actual malice in defamation cases can be shown where there was reckless disregard for the truth or falsity of the published information.

    For example, when a certain blogger could have easily obtained the unedited speech video and compared its contents to what was in his possession prior to publication.

  216. 216
    birthmarker says:

    @Midnight Marauder: What you describe here is privatization gone mad. Big business wants to get its hooks into the big pot–taxpayer money.

    You never hear how privatization is more efficient or saves money. The really surprising thing is that the state agency was allowed to sue. Eventually that won’t be allowed because you would be disparaging a corporate product. The things produced by corporations will someday have the same libel and slander protections as people, IMO.

    Republicans exist to push the corporate agenda. Everything in the republican plan just happens to benefit big business. Less government, less regulation, less taxes–all big business desires. And it has been propagandized to us very well as being to the worker’s benefit. But the facts belie that, don’t they.

    That is why I don’t vote republican.

    I saw Daniels walk to the microphone and spew the same repub talking points of the day too many times when he worked at the White House to have any respect for him.

    BTW I was a solid C student through 3 years of high school French, and we were taught to say voila.

  217. 217
    eemom says:

    @Cacti:

    …..or acted in reckless disregard of its truth or falsity.

    Meeting that standard in a case where the falsity of the statement “Sherrod used her public office to discriminate against white people” was proved by the VERY SAME video Breitbart used to make the statement, is IMO as close to a slam dunk as one gets in litigation.

    ETA: I see you said that already.

    This issue was argued ad nauseum in a thread last weekend. I honestly don’t understand how anyone who knows WTF they’re talking about could say she can’t win this case.

  218. 218
    Scamp Dog says:

    @Corner Stone: Look, we got tax cuts under George W. Bush, and the result was anemic job creation. After the horrible, horrible tax increases during the Clinton administration we had reasonably good job creation.

    If you think there’s some underlying factor that made job creation bad during Bush’s eight years that masked tax-cut related job creation, I’d like to hear it. Heck, I’d like to see some evidence that tax cuts ever created jobs. I’ve heard it trotted out, but never backed up with anything resembling evidence.

  219. 219
    Cacti says:

    @MattR:

    And so you are saying that it will cost the defendanat zero time, energy or dollars?

    No, no, and it depends.

    Some jurisdictions allow the prevailing party to recover attorneys fees and costs.

    Additionally, bringing a defamation claim with no chance of succeeding on the merits opens the original plaintiff to a suit for malacious prosecution.

  220. 220
    Bella Q says:

    @Corner Stone: Ah, but where do you stand on whether Mr. Kain – or Newt, for that matter – is an at will employee?

  221. 221

    […] at Balloon Juice, new front pager E.D. Kain has a post up dissing Newt (fine by me) but praising the latest libertarian flavor of the month, former New […]

  222. 222
    Ash Can says:

    @Svensker: Anyone who knows the words to “Deck Us All with Boston Charlie” and thinks “wallah” looks and sounds illiterate can come sit right here next to me. :)

    And who wants to bet that people wouldn’t have said “boo” about this post — let alone pick nits to death here in the comments — if John had never identified E.D. Kain as a “conservative” to us? I mean, come on. I’ve been reading this blog for a couple of years now, and I’ve never seen a lucid conservative treated like this in the comments. This is absolutely fucking ridiculous.

  223. 223

    @Scamp Dog: Corner Stone is being, or trying to be a spoof. Should be like spotting a dung beetle rolling elephant shit a mile away.

  224. 224
    Cyrus says:

    @MattR:

    The issue is whether the threat that someone will claim that you are MAKING SHIT UP will have a chilling effect. (see SLAPP lawsuits) It is a slippery slope argument and not one that I agree with, but it is not completely loony either.

    Loony? No, but you’re the first person to mention that so it’s a bit of a strawman. Disingenuous partisan hackery, though? Yes, and I don’t see anyone saying anything else to begin with. Kain opposes a chilling effect on conservatives making shit up people in general making shit up when a conservative just happens to be the recent example in the news. What’s that tell you about him?
    @Ash Can:

    And who wants to bet that people wouldn’t have said “boo” about this post—let alone pick nits to death here in the comments—if John had never identified E.D. Kain as a “conservative” to us? I mean, come on. I’ve been reading this blog for a couple of years now, and I’ve never seen a lucid conservative treated like this in the comments. This is absolutely fucking ridiculous.

    Well, of course not, if John hadn’t identified Kain as a conservative and made him a poster here. People have indeed jumped down the throats of other right-wingers posting here, and this, to me, looks at least as justified than last time.

  225. 225
    birthmarker says:

    I’m more of a Gary Johnson guy myself. I like Mitch Daniels, too, but I haven’t been paying close enough attention to his foreign policy to say for sure. I’d vote for Johnson over any other candidate out there.

    This is not what I come to BJ for.

    DougJ – I can’t speak for Conor.

    And this is how those Atlantic circle jerk posts always start out.

    E.D. has not participated in these comments at all, has he. I have decided that he is really DougJ having a bit of fun with us today.

  226. 226
    Ash Can says:

    @Cyrus: Horsecrap. Michael D. got much more of a pass than Kain’s getting. And so the hell what if he’s a FP’er? Cole has never tried to pass himself off as anything but a libertarian-leaning former-right-winger who’d seen the light WRT the GOP in particular and the RW in general. Why should his FP have to be ideologically pure? And why should anyone think it needs to be?

    Seriously, this is what I dump on the RW for. It’s the same bullshit, only the names are different.

  227. 227
    fasteddie9318 says:

    Just a thought, but while we’re revisiting the fourteenth amendment to make sure that brown babies don’t automatically get to be citizens, can we also rewrite the damn thing to make it clear that corporations, the debacle of Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad notwithstanding, are not people?

  228. 228
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @Ash Can:
    People nitpicking and being mean in the BJ comments section? To somebody who is a n00b? Unpossible!

  229. 229
    Cacti says:

    @Ash Can:

    And who wants to bet that people wouldn’t have said “boo” about this post—let alone pick nits to death here in the comments—if John had never identified E.D. Kain as a “conservative” to us? I mean, come on. I’ve been reading this blog for a couple of years now, and I’ve never seen a lucid conservative treated like this in the comments. This is absolutely fucking ridiculous.

    For you

  230. 230
    Mark S. says:

    @thomas Levenson:

    There he noted, scornfully, that between 1913 (the Fed’s founding) and now, the value of a 1913 dollar has dropped to 5 cents. I.e.—the portrait of Washington you have in your pocket would buy you what a nickel in 1913 would have.

    This is why, even if I like some things they say, libertarians have no business being within a thousand feet of any position of power. Does Johnson think it would be awesome if we had no inflation over the last 100 years? That deflation usually means we’re in a hellish recession?

    I wouldn’t argue that the Fed has never made any boneheaded decisions, but on inflation, its record has been pretty solid. Aside from the oil shocks which weren’t the Fed’s fault, it has generally kept inflation low for the last fifty years.

  231. 231
    Midnight Marauder says:

    @Ash Can:

    Why should his FP have to be ideologically pure? And why should anyone think it needs to be?

    Ideological purity doesn’t have shit to do with talking about how awesome Mitch Daniels is, how the Obama Administration was somehow more at fault for firing Sherrod than Breitbart was in deliberately smearing her, or his total cop-out in responding to legitimate questions about his advocating the “Abortion is the same as slavery” analogy.

    His introduction here has revealed him to be a rather unserious pseudo-intellectual. Tough shit if he’s getting beat up for it.

  232. 232
    calipygian says:

    What does speak to his character? That he would divorce his wife while she’s in the hospital fighting cancer? Or that he is a serial intern banger?

    He is truely a foul piece of shit.

  233. 233
    D-Chance. says:

    @matoko_chan: A dose or two of Midol might help, chan-chan.

  234. 234
    Corner Stone says:

    @Cacti: ohhh siz-nap!

  235. 235
    Corner Stone says:

    @Bella Q: We are all at will my friend. Masha’allah none of us are promised the next day.

  236. 236
    debbie says:

    @ Violet:

    I’d bet most people use “wallah” for “voila” because they don’t know how to pronounce it or they’ve heard someone else mispronounce it. I know I’ve heard that mispronunciation any number of times here in the Midwest. Even living in NYC, I remember hearing all kinds of mispronunciations of the word “croissant” (as in croy-zant).

  237. 237
    patroclus says:

    Johnson and Daniels are lying smearing Republicans. Until and unless the Republican party and its politicians stop lying and smearing, there is no way they will ever be appealing to me. So, for so long as Johnson and Daniels remain lying smearing Republicans, they will not get my vote.

  238. 238
    birthmarker says:

    The mispronunciation of beaucoup drives me crazy. Also tonneau cover. I guess it is that high school French again.

  239. 239
    Frank says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Government never created one job so we need to focus on private employment for this.
    It seems pretty clear we’re going to need to do something about unfunded entitlements like Social Security as well. The most straight forward path there is to raise retirement age to 70. There just aren’t as many contributors to this broke legacy as there are entitlees.

    Of course government creates jobs. Who do you think funds building bridges etc?

    There are other ways than raising the retirement age. We are already spending as much on our military as the rest of the world combined. It has gotten out of hand and there is absolutely no reason for it. If we cut military spending, we could easily leave the fund entitlements such as SS and Medicare.

  240. 240
    bago says:

    236 comments and an E.D. Kain ain’t one.

  241. 241
    matoko_chan says:

    @D-Chance.: wallah….will midol bring back 6000 american soldiers from the dead? or 150,000 afghan and iraqi civilians? or will restore the trillion + taxpayers dollars we spent on FUCKING NOTHING?
    glad you think its funnie.
    the truth is Our Fabulous Judeoxian Democracy allowed us to elect a profoundly stupid person that nearly destroyed our country.

  242. 242
    neil says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ: I too hate it when Republicans hiss.

  243. 243
    Corner Stone says:

    @Frank:

    There are other ways than raising the retirement age. We are already spending as much on our military as the rest of the world combined. It has gotten out of hand and there is absolutely no reason for it. If we cut military spending, we could easily leave the fund entitlements such as SS and Medicare.

    Frank. Your patchouli sniffing dirty hippie ways are peaking back out.
    Why don’t you stop humping for ponies and just deal with the pragmatic outcome we have facing us?
    First of all, government can’t create jobs. As a soshulist hippie you should agree with President Obama when he tells us this.
    We know this to be true. That fact leads us to understand that only the private sector can create jobs and provide employment. And how do they do that? Incentives like tax cuts. Changes in regulations to allow them to make the best decisions for their employees. The ability to know what the immediate future holds so they can invest in their companies and communities.
    I’m just tired of this defeated hippie outlook that government is going to somehow make things better by spending even more money they don’t have.
    Would you do that in your household?

  244. 244
    Dr. Morpheus says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    Who is Gary Johnson?

    Who is John Garyson?

    Who is Gary Galt?

    Who are you? Who, who, who who…

    I’d like to buy a vowel.

  245. 245
    Dr. Morpheus says:

    @Svensker:

    Please don’t say this. It is a Pet Peeve of mine. The word is “voila.”

    Pushaw, that’s a musical instrument, Conerstone was right.

  246. 246
    Dr. Morpheus says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Listen. The bottom line is if we don’t get this deficit under control immediately we’re going to be sucked into an inflationary spiral. After we make constructive effort on reducing the deficit we can decide the appropriate tax cuts to spur long term job growth.

    WHO ARE YOU AND WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH THE REAL CORNER STONE?!?!

  247. 247
    DougL says:

    Voila. Wallah.
    Kitty corner. Catty corner. Caddy corner.

    Late to the party…
    Are there enough geeks around for a good, old-fashioned Emacs vs. Vi(m) crusade?

    Also.
    http://www.battleofthecheetos.com/

  248. 248
    Flugelhorn says:

    @Zifnab:

    That said, Obama is more receptive to public opinion than Bush ever was.

    HAHAHAHAH!

  249. 249
    Flugelhorn says:

    Wow. This looks like a clear case of too many assholes and not enough plugs.

    BJ had a much better “clientele” before John turned into Arlen Specter.

  250. 250
    Corner Stone says:

    @Flugelhorn: Just not sure what Cole is expecting.
    A climate denialist
    A plodding dimbulb
    A glibertarian

    What could possibly be next? People joke about Tunch guestblogging but shit…given the options…

  251. 251
    E.D. Kain says:

    @JGabriel: Hey all. A few things. First off, I’m basically locked out of comments during the day due to work and internet filters and such. And then we spent the afternoon at the doctor’s office since my wife had a bad fever. And we have a newborn. So I’ve been tied up. Balloon Juice comment threads had to take a back seat to, you know, real life.

    I’m not sure what to say after 250 comments. Some of you have willfully misconstrued what I wrote. That’s fine. Some of you have stuck your necks out to defend what I wrote. Thanks for that. Jack – you may be right. I’m not sure. MattR, much thanks.

    Anyways – I’m neither a Republican or a Libertarian. I actually favor a system similar to the Swiss model – with good, effective and competitive government (and tax rates); and sensible health care and safety nets. I really like the Dutch healthcare model and would love something like that here. I was a big fan of Wyden-Bennett during the HCR debates.

    I favor a carbon tax to cap and trade – if you want less of something, tax it. I would prefer to keep the overall tax burden low since I think that’s best for the economy, but I’m not a diehard Never Raise Taxes conservative.

    I prefer decentralization to centralization; organic society to planned society; and a limited government whenever possible. I see very little reason to place much trust in government. It baffles me that people ever do, especially liberals after the Bush administration.

    In any case, I can take a bloodbath or two or twenty. Y’all don’t scare me a bit.

  252. 252
    Yutsano says:

    @E.D. Kain:

    And then we spent the afternoon at the doctor’s office since my wife had a bad fever. And we have a newborn.

    It could be worse. The newborn could have the fever. At least your wife can tell you she’s uncomfortable and what helps. Kind of a tough first day.

    In any case, I can take a bloodbath or two or twenty. Y’all don’t scare me a bit.

    Good, cause TNC don’t play bean bag. And just as a point of order, the Swiss and Dutch health systems are both some of the most expensive in Europe. And the canon government system was part of the basis for keeping the states, but our government really is a sui generis. We’ll always have a debate about its size and its reach and I personally think that’s healthy. As long as it’s a debate and not demagoguing.

    At any rate, Balloon Juice ni yokusou!

  253. 253
    E.D. Kain says:

    P.S. – I like Johnson because I think he would be the most anti-war candidate. The rest is small potatoes. If we really want to avoid an oppressive state we need to stop the warmongers – liberal and conservative alike. I don’t agree with all of Johnson’s positions, but I like his position on the drug wars and on wars in general. That’s good enough for me (for now at least).

    Also – here’s some more stuff I wrote about Breitbart and Sherrod.

  254. 254
    E.D. Kain says:

    @Yutsano: Thanks. And while the Dutch and Swiss systems may be expensive they’ve actually made some really great market-based reforms to make them more effective – both in terms of cost and outcome.

  255. 255
    Yutsano says:

    @E.D. Kain: Biggest difference between theirs and ours (and I see this changing soon): no insurance company in either Switzerland or Holland can operate at a profit. I think that’s also true of hospitals, so there’s no skimming off the top to contend with there. Their coverage is quite excellent. My personal opinion, and I haven’t seen anything to change this yet even after HCR: we’re going to end up with a public/private system very similar to Australia’s. We already have the basic structure for how this would work here (Medicare) it would just get expanded as we go along. The Obama bill was never the end of the road, and I’m tired of hearing from folks who say this is all we’ll get.

  256. 256
    Mark S. says:

    @E.D. Kain:

    I’d be in favor of copying whatever the Dutch do:

    Premiums paid by the insured are about 100 € per month (about US$146 in Sept. 2009) with variation of about 5% between the various competing insurers.

    That’s less than $2,000 a year. However, I doubt such a system would ever work here, on account that our Congress consists of a bunch of prostitution whores who would let the insurance companies charge whatever the hell they liked.

    See, I don’t trust the government either!

  257. 257
    Frank says:

    @Corner Stone:

    I’m just tired of this defeated hippie outlook that government is going to somehow make things better by spending even more money they don’t have.
    Would you do that in your household?

    Well, unlike the Republican government, I don’t attack countries that never attacked us in the first place. So my household would still have the trillion dollar that the Republicans spent on that idiotic war.

    Unlike the Republican government I don’t take budget surpluses and turn them into enormous deficits as was done between 2001-2008.

    By the way, since you don’t think the government can somehow make things better, will you agree then to slash the military budget in half at least? After all, according to you, the government (including Pentagon) can’t do anything right.

  258. 258
    Original Lee says:

    @Svensker: Did you see where they reprinted limited edition Pogo books a couple of years ago? I thought they’d be around for a while, so I bought them one at a time, as money permitted. I only got two.

  259. 259
    Svensker says:

    @Original Lee:

    Did you see where they reprinted limited edition Pogo books a couple of years ago? I thought they’d be around for a while, so I bought them one at a time, as money permitted. I only got two.

    No! My brother got all the originals my parents had, the sneak. He does allow me to look at them when we visit.

  260. 260
    kkuru says:

    That the two are becoming more and more indistinguishable is hardly surprising, but it certainly speaks to his character.

    What character?

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