Open Thread

Gov. Chris Bag O’ Donuts on Warren Buffett and the “Buffett Rule”:

“He should just write a check and shut up. I’m tired of hearing about it. If he wants to give the government more money, he’s got the ability to write a check — go ahead and write it.”

Because nothing enshrines the concept of meticulous policy debate in a representative democracy like SHUT UP WARREN THAT’S WHY.

Open thread.

92 replies
  1. 1
    Kane says:

    At campaign events in Michigan, I continue to hear Romney repeat the line, “This is personal for me.”

    The line sounded so familiar, but I couldn’t place where I had heard it before. And then I finally remembered. It is exactly the same thing that Hillary Clinton tearfully said days before the New Hampshire vote in 2008 when she was trailing in the polls. Coincidence or Luntz wordsmithery?

  2. 2
    Bruce S says:

    Quote of the day, from Rick Santorum: “I was basically pro-choice all my life until I ran for Congress.”

    Also, at that link, don’t miss out on the Santorum quote about how because of his professed great admiration for Dr. King he wants to “get blacks working again” by cutting welfare. I hate this little shit.

  3. 3
    MaxxLange says:

    The “it snowed so that disproves global warming” of fiscal policy. These idiots actually seem to think that this is some knock-down argument.

  4. 4
    Gravie says:

    In other words, “My side can blather on as much as it wants about anything it deems important. Everybody else should just shut up.”

  5. 5
    pragmatism says:

    So this is what a fat blowhard scraping the bottom of the barrel sounds like.

  6. 6
    BGinCHI says:

    No, fatass, we are going to make you and your cronies all write checks to the government. The salad days of concentrating wealth at the top and wrecking the economy are over. Let’s just get this little election over with and then we can get to work salvaging our country from you selfish, stupid hacks.

    Now do me a favor and fuck off.

  7. 7
    Schlemizel says:

    Well, it probably works with the morans they need to get to the polls. The same morans that think Reagan’s tax cuts made their life better because it gave them more money and Dumb-bell-you’s didn’t cause the deficit.

  8. 8

    Oh that’s great, cuz I’m tired of hearing the people in Gov. Sandwiches party complaining about abortion, birth control pills, every TV show and movie they don’t like, and on, and on, and on. If you don’t like it, don’t use it/read it/watch it/listen to it.

    How ’bout it, nutbars? Will that work for you?

  9. 9
    El Cid says:

    No kidding — you can hardly walk down the street without some fucking billionaire walking up to you and whining about how unfair it is that you’re paying so many more taxes as a proportion of your much smaller income than he does. It gets old.

  10. 10
    Zandar says:

    And now Romney wants a 20% across the board tax cut. But limiting deductions will pay for it.

    Good luck with that.

  11. 11
    Ash Can says:

    I object. No fucking way can Chris Christie dance this well.

  12. 12
    BGinCHI says:

    @Zandar: Is it going to get scored by the CBO?

  13. 13

    what? that’s how i won all my debates in high school. and with the rebuttal, johnsmith1882: ‘shut up, you’re stupid’.

  14. 14
    Zandar says:

    And ya know, calling him “Gov. Chris Bag O’ Donuts” was probably over the line. “Gov. Opportunistic Cowardly Troglodyte Asshole” should suffice in the future.

  15. 15
    Comrade Dread says:

    You know, I was going to say that you should just call him Gov. ***hole, instead of a moniker that mocked his weight, but then I realized that could apply to at least five GOP governors I can think of off the top of my head.

  16. 16

    I think it’s a tiny bit more complicated than that. He wants to talk about what Buffett could do if he thinks he personally is paying too little in taxes rather than the more general issue of whether it’s fair to tax capital gains at a lower rate than salary. It’s the same general trick as complaining that Al Gore shouldn’t talk about global warming because he has a big house and flies on airplanes. The Republicans always want to talk about personal action, which lets them criticize others as hypocrites, rather than collective action, which shows how destructive they’re being.

  17. 17
    chopper says:

    he says this to the dude who’s leaving 50 billion dollars to charity when he dies.

  18. 18
    JMG says:

    You know, if Warren Buffett opened up his checkbook in the New Jersey Governor’s race in 2013, Chris Christie’s political career could come to a screeching halt.

  19. 19
    slag says:

    @Southern Beale: I like it! Except taxes are about providing for the public good. Reproductive choices are made for personal reasons. I’d like us to keep this private-public line in existence and not give it over completely to the nutters, if we can avoid it.

  20. 20

    And that’s the reason I want it called “The Romney Rule”

  21. 21
    kindness says:

    One day someone who Christie verbally abuses is going to walk up to him and pop him really good in his face. The big dude is going to crumple like a sack of potatoes and I will toast the guy that night.

  22. 22
    chopper says:

    of course governor stay-puft is pretty pissy over the GOP’s chances this year. think about it, the only way the GOP does well is if the economy takes a shit. the three morons running for the GOP ticket don’t care because all of them have been out of government and have no jurisdiction that would suffer if that happened. the marshmallow man does. he knows the only way his party wins is if his state takes a huge shit this year and he gets it in every chin if that happens.

  23. 23


    Is it going to get scored by the CBO?

    Best guess: no. For it to be scored by the CBO, it would have to be a concrete policy that spelled out exactly which deductions he was going to eliminate. That would require spelling out winners and losers, which always makes a policy less popular. As long as it’s too vague to be scored, everybody can imagine that they’ll pay less because their rate will go down but nobody would touch their favorite deduction.

  24. 24

    That’s the problem, Chris, isn’t it? Even if Buffett voluntarily gives the government a pile of money, YOU will still be skipping out on YOUR fair share of taxes like the parasite you are.

  25. 25
    sally says:

    Ha! I was just coming here to find an open thread or some place I could bitch about this. A Facebook friend of mine – irony of ironies, a glibertarian who is starting a federal government job in a few weeks – just posted a link to this interview with some approving comments.

    She’s a highly intelligent person in so many ways, an engineer with 2 master’s degrees, but she really thinks “shut up” is a bold talking point? And all her glibertarian buddies are nodding their heads and clicking “like” to her post, as though something insightful has happened here. When really, Christie has responded like a 3rd grader.

    I look greatly forward to Christie’s next persuasive bit of public discourse. Maybe he’ll go with “I’m rubber, you’re glue.”

    On the plus side, though, well, this is the best they have to give. Temper-tantruming “shut up!” because they don’t have any real arguments.

  26. 26
    scav says:

    Put your money where your mouth is patriot!

  27. 27
    BGinCHI says:

    @Roger Moore: As I suspected. Fucking worthless bullshit. Big surprise.

    Ummmm, Politifact? Maybe make yourselves useful?

  28. 28
    Brian says:

    @MaxxLange: Unfortunately for at least 27% of the country it is. Christie is a fat idiot plain and simple… see what I did there, I just straight won that argument boooyyyzzzz. Sophomoric is what our politics has become.

  29. 29
    Seebach says:

    @sally: How do you not mock a libertarian that works for the federal government? I wouldn’t be able to look at her without laughing.

  30. 30
    Gin & Tonic says:


    And ya know, calling him “Gov. Chris Bag O’ Donuts” was probably over the line.

    No it wasn’t.

  31. 31
    MattF says:

    But, you see, Christie doesn’t care what BJ commenters think– talking back to Buffett means he’s brave and truth-telling, etc., just the kind of guy wingers like. Not that Christie would evar say anything in a politically calculated way, oh, no. No, no, no.

  32. 32
    kindness says:

    Anyone else here read Dan Savage? I do via the Village Voice web site. Today he ends his column with this and I think it’s really good:

    ‘HEY, EVERYBODY: You know how Mormons “baptize” dead people who weren’t Mormons — including Holocaust victims — because Mormons believe they have a right to choose Mormonism for the deceased? And you know how the Mormon Church says that being gay is a choice? The same church that doesn’t think you should have a choice about being posthumously baptized? Well, now you can choose homosexuality for dead Mormons! Just go to, enter the name of a deceased Mormon or ask the site to find a dead Mormon for you, and—presto! — that dead Mormon gets to have a gay afterlife!’

    Now just watch their heads start to explode.

  33. 33
    PeakVT says:

    @Ash Can: That’s awesome. And you’re undoubtedly right about the dancing.

  34. 34
    Frank says:

    He should just write a check and shut up. I’m tired of hearing about it. If he wants to give the government more money, he’s got the ability to write a check—go ahead and write it.”

    Rather appalling comment from the guy who took a helicopter at taxpayers’ expense to his son’s little league game…

  35. 35
    artem1s says:

    I believe Buffett should write that check when they all STFU, go Galt and move to Somalia.

  36. 36
    chopper says:


    that is straight-up fucking awesome.

  37. 37
    amk says:

    mitt/jersey cow fatso 2012, anyone?

    Come on, a perfect set of ws klowns.

  38. 38

    @kindness: that is genius. begs the question though: why can’t our politicians message as effectively as our sex columnists?

  39. 39
    chopper says:

    if i were buffett i’d put up some commercials in NJ offering to give the state 5 billion dollars if they recall christie’s ass immediately.

  40. 40
    artem1s says:


    I saw this and immediately sent it off to my BGFF who was raised in a fundy household out near Mormon land. He will get such joy out of a couple of meaningless mouse clicks. It seemed like a nice ‘have a happy day’ gesture.

  41. 41


    Ummmm, Politifact? Maybe make yourselves useful?

    Yeah, right. In any case, Politifact would have the same problem CBO would have. He’s not making a real proposal that could actually be scored and checked against his rhetoric. As long as he restricts himself to platitudes about what he’s going to propose, he can only be accused of vagueness rather than actual dishonesty.

  42. 42
    danimal says:

    Um, Governor, your talking point is obsolete.

    Their attacks are so poor, I wonder if they’re even trying anymore. Shut up, indeed.

  43. 43
    Bruuuuce says:

    If the folks in New Jersey ever vote for a Republican governor with “Christie” in his or her name again, the entire state should be lined up and shot. After Ms. Whitman and this putz, that’s a Big Red Flag that the idiot’s an idiot.

  44. 44
    c u n d gulag says:

    I draw my consolation from the thought that Krispy Kreme Christie, Karl Rove, Glenn Beck, Roger Ailes, and Rush Limbaugh, are all a couple of double-cheese-and-bacon burgers, with extra-large fries and gravy, away from meeting their maker.
    And boy will they be in trouble when they meet HER!

    I suggest we start a movement, to hasten their demise:
    “Buy Burger-meals For Fat Fascists!”

  45. 45
    Benjamin Franklin says:

    When the wealthy whine about taxes (% vs actual dollars=bull) I like to think
    of Dilbert’s boss, who opined he could go to the movies twice as much by laying off an employee.

    Think of the Koch Bros who could have a dozen more cubanos every week along with another 5th of Louis the VIII.

    The unfairness of it all

  46. 46
    slag says:

    @kindness: Hmmm…I just converted Ann Davis. Kind of a generic name–makes me wonder if this thing isn’t really converting dead mormons into dead gay mormons. Not only that, how do I know the dead mormon wasn’t gay in the first place, and I just inadvertently converted them nongay? Is there a money back guarantee on posthumous mormon homosexual conversions?

  47. 47
    John PM says:

    And ya know, calling him “Gov. Chris Bag O’ Donuts” was probably over the line.

    Not at all. I personally am waiting for him to eat “one thin mint” and then explode (preferably in Romney’s presence).

  48. 48
    Steve says:

    @kindness: Holy crap that’s funny.

  49. 49
    Legalize says:

    This is just more confirmation that Dems should keep talking about it.

  50. 50
    David Fud says:

    Sounds like we need to start saying to various Republicans: “If that armchair general wants to go to war, he is welcome to it. We would like to buy his gun, buy him a one-way ticket, and let him personally start his war with Iran. Until he gets the war started himself, he needs to shut up.”

    Goose/gander and all that.

  51. 51
    RSA says:

    @Roger Moore:

    The Republicans always want to talk about personal action, which lets them criticize others as hypocrites, rather than collective action, which shows how destructive they’re being.

    Unless it comes to saber rattling on Iran (why doesn’t Jennifer Rubin just send a check to the Israeli government and shut up?) or gay marriage (why doesn’t Newt Gingrich defend his own marriages and just shut up?) or… It’s a very selective perspective.

  52. 52
    Soonergrunt says:


    Ummmm, Politifact? Maybe make yourselves useful?

    Hahahahahahahahahaha! (Breathe) Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!
    (Wipe tear from eye, breathe) Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!

  53. 53
    a.j. says:

    Know what I just realized?

    “Chris Christie”

    “Eric Ericson”

    What is it with these people?

    Just sayin.

  54. 54

    And the hilarity ensues! Democrat Proposes Naming GOP Pro-Life Bill ‘The Ronald Reagan Impose Your Beliefs on a Woman’s Womb Act’. Second choice was “The Tea Party Determines What Rights a Woman Has Act.”

  55. 55
    BGinCHI says:

    @Soonergrunt: If you will it, Dude, it is no dream.

  56. 56
    jibeaux says:

    They always say that — “nothing stopping him from writing a check!”
    /eyeroll Because that’s Buffett’s point, that we can run a government on donations. How ’bout we all just pay what we think is fair and see how that goes?

  57. 57
    sally says:

    @Seebach: It’s a challenge for sure. But my friend will be working for a defense-related agency and she notes the irony but also somehow she thinks that’s different. Because remember, however terrible big government is when it’s providing services, it can funnel unlimited funds into killing people. Sigh.

    My friend is also in a terrible marriage and I’m hoping she’ll come around to sanity after that cancer is out of her life. Maybe it’s naive, but I’m hoping the radical politics are some kind of coping mechanism.

  58. 58
    scav says:

    @kindness: For a cheap thrill, it is a lot of fun. As they quote, I’ve got six little black Cordelias now. One woman, which makes me feel even better.

  59. 59


    Out of curiosity, how did YOU respond to what your friend said? I don’t mean to rag on you in particular, but I’m just really tired of anecdotes about “what my silly glibertarian and/or Repuke friend said on Facebook” which imply the poster didn’t say anything to contradict the silly glibertarian and/or Repuke friend because the poster didn’t want to “hurt anyone’s feelings.” Personally, I’ve just reached the point where I don’t hesitate to point out abject stupidity on the part of right wing Facebook idiots.

  60. 60
    MaxxLange says:

    Everything is so simple! The top 1% of income earners should pay 1% of federal income taxes! Anything else punishes them for their success.

  61. 61
    Culture of Truth says:

    The debt is a big problem, right? So let conservatives write a check and shut up.

  62. 62
    trollhattan says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Found myself thinking in terms of “Gov. Containerload of Little Debbies.”

  63. 63
    Culture of Truth says:

    Romney’s plan would set a permanent top tax rate of 28
    percent for individuals from 35 percent now, cut corporate taxes to 25 percent from 35 percent, eliminate the estate tax and scrap the alternative minimum tax.

  64. 64
    redshirt says:

    “I love my dead gay Mormon son!”

  65. 65
    David Fud says:

    @jibeaux: Starting with the citizens of New Jersey, hopefully.

  66. 66
    Ming says:

    In all fairness, I doubt Christie was debating Buffet; my guess is Christie was directing his comment to the folks who think taxes are anathema. They feel they have *earned* their money fair and square — whether through hard work, or smarts, or willingness to risk capital — and they resent Buffet for trying to tell them what they should do with it.

    That’s why Elizabeth Warren’s statement about how no one gets rich in this country all on their own is so important…

  67. 67
    ksmiami says:

    @c u n d gulag: No no, just have President Obama come out and say how bad triple bacon cheeseburgers are for you and they’ll all load up for the triple bypass specials…(just to piss off liberals, mind you) I am working to hasten their demise…

  68. 68
    David Fud says:

    @Culture of Truth: Exactly. Whatever their pet peeve of the week is, let them write a check for it. It would be nice to see Dems use Republican language against Republicans and their FU implicit message for once instead of taking them seriously.

    ETA: Need a border fence/moat/wall? Write a check for it, we’ll get busy! Need a better military? Write a check while we downsize to a peacetime military, and we’ll expand the empire! and so on…

  69. 69
    joel hanes says:

    No one saw this ?

    Buffett called the Republicans’ bluff a month ago. Buffett has pledged to match 1 for 1 all such voluntary contributions made by Republican members of Congress, also saying “And I’ll even go 3 for 1 for McConnell.”

  70. 70
    The Lodger says:

    @a.j.: I think his last name was originally spelled “Creosote.”

  71. 71
  72. 72
    trollhattan says:

    @Culture of Truth:

    Yikes–thus ensuring budget deficits ’til the end tymes.

    Speaking of which, if we have a balanced budget when the end tymes come (and what wingnut doesn’t believe that’s happening, like, anyday now?) does that get us brownie points, or are we better off running our Chinese-held debt up to astonishing proportions then yelling a final Nelson Muntz “Ha-ha!” whilst being raptured?

  73. 73
    Culture of Truth says:

    To pay for the cuts and reduce the federal budget deficit, Romney said he’d trim $500 billion in spending by 2016.

  74. 74
    Soonergrunt says:

    @kindness: As long as he has NJSP bodyguards, Chris Christie will be an asshole. He’s just like the bullies in every junior high school in the country. They always have somebody nearby to protect them.

  75. 75
    scav says:

    Oh dear, another bubble bursting Out of Eden: when the private prison bubble bursts

    Last week, it emerged that the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) had sent a letter to 48 states offering to take their prisons off their hand in exchange for a quick infusion of cash. The only small catch was that the states would have to sign a contract guaranteeing 90% occupancy of those prisons for the next 20 years
    . . .
    In 2000, the town of Littlefield, Texas borrowed $10m to build the Bill Clayton Detention Center, which was operated by the for-profit GEO Group Inc. For nearly eight years, the prison did well (in financial terms, that is), and employed around 100 people. Then, in 2009, in the wake of several scandals involving inmate mistreatment and suicide, the state of Idaho withdrew all of the inmates they had sent there, leaving the prison with a lot of empty beds. Shortly afterwards, GEO announced it was pulling out, too. And so, the town was left to pick up the tab.

  76. 76
    Soonergrunt says:

    @redshirt: ???
    EDIT: Google is my friend. “Heathers”.

  77. 77
    trollhattan says:

    @Culture of Truth:

    Heh, while building up the Navy to the ship count of 1910. I do love me some wingnut ‘rithmetic!

    Poor Mittens can’t use his bidnez acumen to read the graphs that show the future defecit growth is primarily the product of the Bush tax cuts. Didn’t we already try the MBA preznit thing?

  78. 78
    AA+ Bonds says:

    Christie’s response is a good one if you’re too stupid to know how taxes work

    I mean if you think what happens is that everyone writes checks to the government equal to or more than their taxes for that year and then the IRS sits around and counts up those checks and that’s the “revenue” number we use for planning, then what Christie says makes sense to you, and also, you shouldn’t vote because you don’t understand how the government works at all

  79. 79
    redshirt says:

    @Soonergrunt: Indeed. Great movie back in the day.

  80. 80
    trollhattan says:

    For the open thread, the blues came to the White House last night.

    Can’t wait for the broadcast.

  81. 81
    AA+ Bonds says:

    As a gesture of good faith I would like all Republican Congresspersons and Senators to give up their salaries as well as all other expenditures such as franking privileges

    It’s not like they could become any more corrupt

  82. 82
    SenyorDave says:

    @Zandar: And ya know, calling him “Gov. Chris Bag O’ Donuts” was probably over the line. “Gov. Opportunistic Cowardly Troglodyte Asshole” should suffice in the future.

    Both would suffice, but Christie and Bag O’Donuts just go together so well.

  83. 83
    SenyorDave says:

    Maybe Christie is really upset because when he first heard about Buffet, he thought they were discussing a buffet, and when he realized that it wouldn’t be all he could eat, he just couldn’t ever forgive the man.

  84. 84
    ruemara says:

    @johnsmith1882: Because sex columnists are columnists-bully pulpit included along with communication skills. Politicians, are not.

  85. 85
    chopper says:


    but romney’s going to eliminate the mortgage deduction for super rich people like him. see, he’s really hitting the rich where it hurts. i’m sure his mortgage is really huge. he has a mortgage, right?

  86. 86
    DanielX says:

    Chris Christie: Because fuck him, that’s why.

  87. 87
    Calouste says:


    If I were Warren Buffett, I’d also put a New Jersey detective agency on retainer.

  88. 88
    Mister Papercut says:

    Oh look, Governor McDonnell has finally weighed in an decided that Virginia’s transvaginal ultrasound requirement as a condition for getting an abortion could stand to be a little less rapey.

  89. 89
    Whatsleft says:

    Why would Warren Buffett want to give more money to people that r too stupid to see how destructive their policies are? Doesn’t it make more sense to give/pay the money to people that see the need for the increased rate? That’s what I’d be saying to those dickheads.

  90. 90
    Bullsmith says:

    Taxation is voluntary now, according to Republicans?

  91. 91
    xian says:

    he’s tired of hearing about it because he’s tired of losing.

    republicans love to work the ref– it’s how they salvage losing. obama’s a wimp or he’s a mean thug. it’s the same few effective moves over and over.

  92. 92

    […] Offended at the use of the names of two civil rights heroes, Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) offered his own titles for the bill: “The Ronald Reagan Impose Your Beliefs on a Woman’s Womb Act” and “The Tea Party Determines What Rights a Woman Has Act.” (h/t Southern Beale) […]

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  1. […] Offended at the use of the names of two civil rights heroes, Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) offered his own titles for the bill: “The Ronald Reagan Impose Your Beliefs on a Woman’s Womb Act” and “The Tea Party Determines What Rights a Woman Has Act.” (h/t Southern Beale) […]

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