Beltway Liberals Are Such Scrotums

Here’s Jon Chait, all worried about Obama’s treatment of Jon Huntsman (via):

But what happens the next time Obama wants a talented Republican like Hunstman to serve in his administration? Does he really want that Republican to contend not only with being attacked by fellow partisans in his next race, but knowing that Obama will be collaborating in the attack? if there is a calculation here, it seems like an awfully short-sighted one.

This pearl clutching was sparked by Mark Halperin, who thinks that the Obama Administration is exerting a “death hug” by saying that Huntsman was an excellent ambassador to China.

Perhaps Obama is being clever, or perhaps Jon Huntsman was just a good ambassador to China. But even if Obama is playing 11 dimensional chess, why is it his fault that the rump of the Republican party is so nuts that a little well-deserved praise from Obama disqualifies Huntsman as a 2012 contender? I expect that kind of stupidity from Halperin, but Chait should know better than to blame Obama for the insanity of the far right.

The only “collaboration” I see here is Chait’s, because he’s embracing a stupid beltway double-bind that makes as much sense as any other blame-the-victim logic: “Mommy should have realized that Daddy had too much to drink, so it’s her fault that Daddy punched her in the face.”

If the Republican party rejects talented moderates for doing something as uncontroversial as serving as an ambassador, then let that party pay the price by running unelectable clowns like Palin and Huckabee. And don’t concern troll us by calling it “short sighted” for Obama to execute a strategy that will almost guarantee his election in 2012.

(“Scrotum” is the right word, by the way. It’s an insult to a tough, resilient organ like the vagina to compare it to the average New Republic writer.)

66 replies
  1. 1
    beltane says:

    Yes, scrotum is the perfect word. Just because there is a sac to hold testicles does not mean that there testicles to be held.

    As time goes on I grow less and less irritated by what people like Chait have to say on any subject. Once you realize that they are all playing for the other team life becomes so much simpler. The role of beltway liberals is to provide legitimacy for beltway sociopaths. Damn them all.

  2. 2
    demkat620 says:

    Dude, everything is the Democrats fault.

    Where you been for the last 30 years?

  3. 3
    Napoleon says:

    I generally really like what Chait writes, but WTF was Chait thinking when he wrote that?

    Face it, even without the bear hug it is going to be used against Huntsman and that will keep any Rep with further ambitions from working for Obama in the future. It really is blaming the victim.

  4. 4
    Tom says:

    Gee, whoever heard of such a thing. A president asks a dude to do a job, the dude does and does it well, and the president thanks and praises him for it. What has the world come to?

  5. 5

    I would compare the Beltway Libz to an anus, actually. Nothing useful comes out of them, and what’s produced usually stinks to high heaven.

  6. 6
    Cat Lady says:

    Not getting out of the boat, but this is all great news for John McCain.

  7. 7
    MikeJ says:

    Obama is supposed to make a statement that the guy he hired, the guy who carried out his policies was horrible at his job. This would make the Republicans like Huntsman.

    Incompetence is the key to success in the Republican party.

  8. 8
    dmsilev says:

    Whether Obama is playing some fancy multi-dimensional chess game or whether he’s just saying something nice about a now-former ambassador is sort of a moot point. Large swaths of the GOP primary electorate aren’t going to regard Hunstman as a Vichy sellout because Obama said nice things about him; they’re going to regard him as a Vichy sellout *because he served in the Obama administration*. As far as the fanatics in the base are concerned, the Rubicon has been crossed, the bridges burned, the die cast, etc. etc. etc. Nothing Obama says or doesn’t say after the fact will change that.

    dms

  9. 9
    General Stuck says:

    This pearl clutching was sparked by Mark Halperin, who thinks that the Obama Administration is exerting a “death hug” by saying that Huntsman was an excellent ambassador to China.

    And hence the old saying “keep your friends close, and your enemies closer” death hugging is therefore recommended.

  10. 10
    JAHILL10 says:

    The problem Chait sees is that a Democratic president knows how to play hardball subtly. The role of Democratic presidents is to be bulldozed by the ethics free, take no prisoner tactics of the Republicans. Didn’t he get the memo? If the guy wanted to run for president he shouldn’t have taken the appointment. Obama’s 11th dimensional chess move was appointing him in the first place. Duh.

  11. 11
    agrippa says:

    For what it is worth, Jon Chait does not impress me. He should a lot better.

  12. 12
    Citizen_X says:

    I’m thinking of a paraphrased Marisa Tomei, ranting at the end of My Cousin Vinny: “Can you imagine? Spending your whole life being thanked by people for doing a good job! What. A. Fuckin’. Nightmare!”

  13. 13
    Cat Lady says:

    Well, the banner ad at the top of the page wants me to Join Buddy. Apparently some assclown named Buddy Roemer thinks he can be President in 2012. I can see the bumper sticker now – The Country needs a Buddy.

  14. 14
    Mr. Furious says:

    Hear! Hear! Perfectly summed up, ‘mix.

  15. 15
    Svensker says:

    @Citizen_X:

    LOL. Yes. With the accent, of course.

  16. 16
    Superluminar says:

    Is this guy actually running for President (has he explicitly said so)? He seems pretty sensible, so surely he must know he stands no chance in the present-day Republican party for the nomination!? Unless he’s picked up some of Obama’s mad 467 m-dimensional fujitsu chess skills and is positioning for a nomination in 2016 as a moderate after a 2012 thrashing…

  17. 17
    David Fud says:

    Christian Mistermix would never talk about the sacred container of the magic swimmers with such contempt. The delicate scrotum must be protected so the fee-fees of Our Lord’s sacred swimmers are not hurt.

    Where, oh where, great Christian Mistermix, did thou goest? I misseth thee greatly!

  18. 18
    Donut says:

    The Huntsman question shall remain unresolved for me until a BJ front-pager tells me what Sully thinks about it.

  19. 19
    Anya says:

    In junior high school, if anyone hangs out with the unfortunate kid the bullies and the popular crowd decided to target, they’re targeted too. So the stupid beltway crowd looks at politics through the eyes of junior high schoolers. I am probably insulting kids in junior high school with this comparison.

  20. 20
    Kevin says:

    Revised Obama statement to appease the scrots:

    “John Huntsman was a failure as an ambassador. Instead of engaging the Chinese in our policies, he spent the past 2 years cleaning his guns, drinking tea, and preventing abortions in the Chinese country. He also found my secret Kenyan birth certificate, solved the budget crisis (the worlds, not just America’s), and as his final act, created a job (his own job, given that he resigned to run against me). I hear by resign and appoint the honourable Mr Huntsman as new President and king. Oh, he also hates Obamacare, and he convinced me that it’s bad”.

    That should please them. Because clearly, Obama owes this guy his life for serving in his administration, election be damned.

  21. 21
    Dennis SGMM says:

    Chait’s piece says more about the state of the Republican party than it does about Obama. Normal people would have said “It’s cool that Obama appointed a Republican and that he praised him for doing a good job.” Republicans, on the other hand, have whipped themselves into such a paranoid froth that both the appointment and the praise are seen as a subtle attempt to undermine their guy. If seeing everything that others do as inimical isn’t a textbook definition of paranoia then I don’t know what is.

    GOP; Grand Old Paranoids.

  22. 22
    Cacti says:

    Concern troll is concerned.

  23. 23
    Kevin says:

    Oh, it doesn’t matter anyway. The journalists avoid it, but it’s a huge issue: The teabaggers (republican base) are NOT going to vote for a Mormon. They just aren’t, no matter how rich, no matter how much he looks like the love child of Ronald Reagan and John Galt. It isn’t going to happen. And as long as they control the nomination, Huntsman and Romney are dead on arrival.

  24. 24
    khead says:

    This action just goes to show that Obama is really a commie.

  25. 25
    NovShmozKaPop says:

    What’s the big deal…I thought the original appointment was designed to keep Huntsman out of action for a while, the praise is just icing on the cake.

  26. 26
    MikeJ says:

    @Kevin: I’m not convinced. I grew up among the Republican base, and it is true that they view the LDS as a false religion. Right up there with the whore of Babylon Roman Catholic church.

    However, they hate black people even more, and if they think a Mormon can beat Obama, they’ll support him. The money wing of the party will make the decision anyway, all that will be left for the shit kickers is justifying their votes to themselves.

  27. 27
    Jim says:

    Who the hell is Chait thinking of when he says “talented Republican”? There aren’t any Republicans who aren’t already persona non grata with the GOP base who I’d want in the Obama administration.

  28. 28
    kay says:

    I love how only Democrats have to follow these rules. Have they forgotten Judd Gregg? His bizarre behavior on an Obama appointment?
    Judd Gregg shows me that no Democratic President should ever float a nomination of a conservative (let alone appoint one) or we’ll have a series of embarrassing press conferences and insane statements, and the conservative will then make it his personal mission to discredit the Democratic President, bad behavior for which he’ll be rewarded with hundreds of appearances on cable shows.

  29. 29
    Tim in SF says:

    “(“Scrotum” is the right word, by the way. It’s an insult to a tough, resilient organ like the vagina to compare it to the average New Republic writer.)”

    Calling a weak or cowardly person a pussy does not mean you are calling them a vagina.

    The meaning “weak or cowardly person” has a separate etymology. Websters 1913 Revised Unabridged Dictionary lists this version of pussy as an alternate spelling of “pursy”, an otherwise obsolete English word meaning “fat and short-breathed; fat, short, and thick; swelled with pampering …”[1] The interpretation is often misconstrued, as it contains multiple meanings which some consider derogatory.[2] In fact, when pussy appears in the earlier 1828 edition of the dictionary, this definition is presented for the word, while the older pursy is simply offered as a “corrupt orthography”.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pussy#Weakness

    Dan Savage is stupid for using “scrotum” as an insult. Please don’t follow suit.

  30. 30
    bemused senior says:

    OT, but I just saw Kevin Drum’s cat blogging photos from yesterday, and Tunch is just a sylph of a cat in comparison with Ink Blot.

    http://motherjones.com/kevin-d.....march-2011

  31. 31
    piratedan says:

    …and in a stunning nod to forming a bi-partisan cabinet, President McCain has appointed a wastepaper basket that was once in Senator Kennedy’s office as the new had of the EPA….

  32. 32
    nhdemocrat says:

    I don’t think Chait merits this type of vituperative. Is his analysis here flawed? Sure, but calling him names doesn’t refute it anywhere near as well as the rest of the paragraph here. Chait is generally right on a lot of issues (the required TNR soft-spot for Israel being an exception) and should have earned a little bit of leeway. Halperin, by all means, deserves whatever scorn available.

  33. 33
    John says:

    Man, Obama is discouraging future Republicans from serving in his administration…by, um, praising a Republican who served in his administration? This is insane.

  34. 34
    Suck It Up! says:

    Who says Huntsman is still a sane moderate Republican?

  35. 35
    cat48 says:

    The entire Obama Admin., plus friends, are getting quite good at “Death Hugs.” Ax was on MorningHo yeserday talking about how similar Obamacare & Romneycare are and how they used Romneycare for a template. Clever way for the Admin. to shiv Romney or Huntsman.

  36. 36
    sukabi says:

    come on, the only appropriate response Obama should have given about Huntsman was that he was a disaster… doncha you know that Obama is the only one responsible for making sure he has viable opposition in the next election? It was his DUTY to trash Huntsman to give him “cracker cred”.

  37. 37

    But even if Obama is playing 11 dimensional chess

    Haha ) We’re still deluding ourselves with this, are we?

  38. 38
    DonkeyKong says:

    My wingnut father-in-law just got an email today that snopes confirmed Huntsman’s hug by Obama was actually the dreaded “Kenyan reach around.”

    And snopes don’t lie people!

  39. 39
    JWL says:

    “If the Republican party rejects talented moderates for doing something as uncontroversial as serving as an ambassador, then let that party pay the price by running unelectable clowns like Palin and Huckabee”.

    That’s actually a pretty fair explanation of why the democratic party has enjoyed its run of electoral success in California over the past twenty-odd years.

    Which is not to say I’m confident the republican party will be denied the Executive branch in 2012. Far from it.

    But they’ve certainly cut their own throat time and again in this state. Rather than seek out and nominate conservative moderates who stand a fair chance at winning, they seek out and award rabidly maniacal ideologues doomed to lose. That fact goes a long way in explaining why Barbara Boxer was re-elected to her 3rd term this past November.

  40. 40
    Corner Stone says:

    Has anyone but me noticed that Ray LaHood is the only administration official who knows how to play hardball, and make it stick?

  41. 41
    geg6 says:

    Well, Dana Loesch told me last night on Real Time that Michelle Bachmann is the best GOP candidate. And I agree with Paul Begala that I would pay her filing fees. With that in mind, Huntsman is DOA this election cycle.

  42. 42

    It’s worth noting what, exactly, Chait is complaining about here: that Obama’s statement might make it harder for Obama to appoint Republicans to serve in his administration.

    Ohnoes!

  43. 43

    @cat48:

    The entire Obama Admin., plus friends, are getting quite good at “Death Hugs.” Ax was on MorningHo yeserday talking about how similar Obamacare & Romneycare are and how they used Romneycare for a template. Clever way for the Admin. to shiv Romney or Huntsman.

    Yup. How about Deval Patrick – Obama’s national co-chair in 2008 – hyping Romney’s leadership in health care reform on Meet the Press? They are willfully exaggerating Romney’s role in the bill. He went along with it because it was the best deal he could get, but they’re deliberately making him out to be the author of the bill.

  44. 44
    FlipYrWhig says:

    If Huntsman really is gearing up for a presidential campaign against Obama, do Chait and Halperin think that it’s Obama’s duty to make that campaign as easy as possible?

  45. 45

    @Corner Stone:

    Has anyone but me noticed that Ray LaHood is the only administration official who knows how to play hardball, and make it stick?

    You mean like this?

    How about we put that rail money into some highway interchanges instead?

    Fuck you. Your money’s going to Oregon.

    Gates has kicked more butt on DADT repeal implementation than I thought he would. Quietly, but firmly.

    …which kind of proves your point, doesn’t it?

  46. 46
    jwb says:

    @geg6: I’m predicting the choice will be one of our current clown midwestern governors, probably Walker but perhaps Kasich or Snyder—whichever one proves that he’s the most manly and wingnutty by the end of the summer. I’m also seeing a real possibility that the choice might end up being made on the convention floor, which would be awesome in terms of popcorn futures, not so much for the country.

  47. 47

    @FlipYrWhig: But think of the theoretical future Republican appointments!

    It’s Village Superbowl Sunday when a Democrat appoints a Republican to something. Oh, Sec. Bill Cohen, swoon swoon! What if there’s less of that?

  48. 48
    Jamie says:

    ‘Scrotum’ is perfectly used.

    In fact, that is the the proper collective noun, in general- cf ‘a scrotum of teabaggers’.

    You’re welcome.

  49. 49
    Stillwater says:

    @Jamie: ‘a scrotum of teabaggers’

    Awesome.

    Like, ‘Things are getting a little dicey down here Fred. Unions and students are trying to get into the capital building, but a scrotum of Teabaggers is blocking their way.’

  50. 50
    Social outcast says:

    I likes my scrotum. Why do you hate yours so much that you compare it to someone you dislike?

  51. 51
    Corner Stone says:

    @Social outcast: I was wondering what had happened in his life that he decided to describe the vagina as “tough” ? If he had just let it go with resilient that would’ve been understandable.

  52. 52

    Chait and Halperin are diseased, pus-filled chancres on the hairy scrotum of the Beltway journalism body politic. Both of them deserve the same kind of ending that Joe Pesci got at the end of Casino.

    Daniel Larison has been debunking the Huntsman myth over at Eunomia. You may or may not agree with Larison but I think he’s spot on about Huntsman’s chances in 2012, which are slim, fat and none and not because Huntsman served in the Obama administration but because he’s a Mormon.

    I’d love to see President Obama jam a sharp, pointy stick into Chait’s eye by doing a presser, having a friendly reporter in the audience ask him a question about Huntsman and saying

    “Look, Jon Huntsman did a great job representing America’s interests as ambassador to China. If the GOP has a problem with that then it shows how ridiculous and foolish they are. The fact is that the biggest thing holding Jon Huntsman from the GOP nomination isn’t that he served in my administration, it’s the fact that he’s a Mormon and the evangelical bigots in GOP base will never, ever, in a million years, nominate a Mormon for president because they don’t believe that Mormons are Christians.
    __
    The same goes for Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney will never win the GOP nomination for the same reason. It’s not because he flip flops all over the place and used to be in favor of gay marriage but is now against it. It’s not because he passed a health care law in Massachusetts that we based the Affordable Care Act on but is now against that law. It’s not that he used to be in favor of amnesty for illegal immigrants but is now against it. It’s not that he’s changed his positions on so many issues so many times that there’s a website called “mittromneyflipflops.com” to help you keep track of his flip-flopping. No, none of these issues matter, the real reason that Mitt Romney will never win the nomination of the Republican party is because of the evangelical bigots in the GOP base.

  53. 53

    Hmmm, I wonder why my last comment ended up in moderation. I didn’t use any naughty words such as Ⅴⅰagra, ⅭⅰaⅠⅰs or Oⅹyⅽoⅾone. Could someone please get me out of moderation Hell?

  54. 54

    @Corner Stone:

    I was wondering what had happened in his life that he decided to describe the vagina as “tough” ? If he had just let it go with resilient that would’ve been understandable.

    I’m still wondering what happened in E.D. Kain’s life that caused him to write:

    “Scrotum” is the right word, by the way. It’s an insult to a tough, resilient organ like the vagina, an organ filled with sharp pointy teeth and surrounded by stinging, razor edged tentacles dripping with noisome acidic secretions to compare it to the average Reason magazine writer, especially that simpering leather queen Nick Gillespie or his catamite, Matt Welch.

  55. 55

    @JWL:

    But they’ve certainly cut their own throat time and again in this state. Rather than seek out and nominate conservative moderates who stand a fair chance at winning, they seek out and award rabidly maniacal ideologues doomed to lose. That fact goes a long way in explaining why Barbara Boxer was re-elected to her 3rd term this past November.

    Especially since Boxer ran such a lackluster campaign. If I had been working for her she would have won the election by 25 points. Carly Fiorina has so much negative baggage from running HP into the ground that it’s a miracle that she was able to get anything more than the batshit insane 27 percent vote.

  56. 56

    @DonkeyKong:

    My wingnut father-in-law just got an email today that snopes confirmed Huntsman’s hug by Obama was actually the dreaded “Kenyan reach around.”

    I hereby propose that we replace any references to President Obama “playing eleven dimension chess” with references to President Obama “giving someone the dreaded, Kenyan reach-around.

  57. 57
    rikyrah says:

    I don’t give a shyt about a ‘ talented Republican’ being in a Democratic President’s administration. That position and any position should have gone to a good talented Democrat.

  58. 58
    piratedan says:

    well it was all part of the deal trying to soothe wingnuttia, “see, I have Huntsman, McHugh, Gates in my administration. I tried to get Gregg, so it’s not blank panther party ver 2.0, we’re really looking for bipartisan solutions” all of which was routinely ignored by the Right as they turned the volume up to 11. All we had to do was actually listen to what McConnell said, “our number one goal is to ensure that Obama is a 1 term president”. Nothing about jobs, nothing about the economy, nothing about the good of the nation, just the same old tired shit that boils down to “there’s a nigga in the white house, hide the white women and their holy vages”.

  59. 59
    Cliff says:

    See, the problem is that you’re reading Halperin.

    You’re adding an unnecessary level of frustration and strain to your life by paying attention to these numbnuts political analysts.

  60. 60
    stormhit says:

    This post was really stupid.

  61. 61
    Chris says:

    @brendancalling:

    I was thinking the taint is appropriate, but… close enough.

  62. 62
    Chris says:

    Chait lost me at “talented Republican.”

    And it’s nice that Obama wants to include people with different viewpoints (hey, sometimes you *want* to have half a plate of arsenic and tire rims), but if he steals all the non-insane Republicans, there’s going to be nobody left he can talk to.

    At least, not without providing a notarized copy of his birth certificate each time they meet.

  63. 63
    Ding Ding says:

    @Tim in SF: Interesting. I always assumed it was just an abbreviated variant of pusillanimous: “lacking in courage and manly strength and resolution; contemptibly fearful”

  64. 64
    jayjaybear says:

    @bemused senior:

    Inkblot is…impressive. “Sometimes I can and sometimes I can’t.” Can’t what? Breathe?

  65. 65
    Evolved Deep Southerner says:

    And NOW my last fucking comment is in moderation. Was it because I said P**sy? Perhaps s**tum?

    Thanks again for nothing, Mistermix.

  66. 66
    Evolved Deep Southerner says:

    @Evolved Deep Southerner: And now the whole motherfucking comment in its entirety has disappeared. Fuck all y’all.

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