Pillage the Village

Some Villager vignettes for your consideration. First up, Dana Milbank on Joe Lieberman’s sparsely attended farewell speech in the senate:

Joe Lieberman’s Sad Send-Off

It Was a Lonely Farewell for Joe Lieberman.

…A few more senators arrived during the 20-minute speech, but even by the end Lieberman was very much alone — which is how it has been for much of his 24-year tenure. He tried to push back against the mindless partisanship that developed in the chamber, and he paid dearly for it…

What a steaming load of horseshit. Lieberman was a highly partisan actor on behalf of the insurance-financial-military complex, which filled his coffers sufficiently to retain office long after the people of Connecticut were sick of the mewling, sanctimonious prick. Given the damage he inflicted with his war-mongering and petty spite, Lieberman deserved a much grander send-off, such as ejection from the chamber via catapult to a new home in a toxic waste dump.

Instead, he got away with his many perfidies, lionized by ignorant prats like Milbank for his non-existent integrity and bipartisanship, and he’ll no doubt land on K Street, where he’ll rake in millions of dollars. We’re supposed to feel sorry for Lieberman? Boo-fucking-hoo.

Next up: hair harrumphing and fat shaming:

With the exception of every minute of every single episode of Dancin’ Dave Gregory’s “Press the Meat,” this clip illustrates the vacuity of our fucked up political press corps about as well as anything you’ll ever see. George Stephanopoulis and Barbara Walters are discussing her recent interviews with Hillary Clinton and Chris Christie.

Wow, there’s a lot to discuss! You’ve got the Secretary of State in a tumultuous geopolitical time, what with much of the Middle East going to hell, etc., but the teaser for the segment is all about Hillary Clinton’s hair.

Walters apologetically notes that a man wouldn’t be questioned about his coif, but nonetheless, the public demands an answer, so Walters must ask. Clinton responds with the mocking tone the question deserves, but Jaysus, this is stupid. Clinton should have shaved her head on the segment and made a real statement, like Joan of Arc.

Next up, Chris Christie, possible GOP contender in 2016, governor of a hurricane-ravaged state, frequent pugnacious asshole and notorious Obama-thanker. Was the teaser to that segment about how a GOP primary candidate who is famous for his temper might navigate between the batshit crazies and plutocrats who control his party to offer a credible alternative to the Democrats? How about a bit on Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts and the looming threat of climate change to coastal areas?

Nope — it’s about fat Christie’s fat-fat ass and fat-fat-fat gut. Could voters see past his big fat blubber and consider electing such a fatty-fat motherfucker?

Again, Walters poses the question delicately, after making a joke about the “elephant in the room” in the intro. Jaysus. I half expected Christie to respond that if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land.

I suppose our political press corps could get even dumber, but it’s hard to imagine how unless they add Jim Hoft to the ranks. Which wouldn’t surprise me.

[X-posted at Rumproast]

54 replies
  1. 1

    ….this clip illustrates the vacuity of our fucked up political press corps….

    Not three minutes ago I walked into the bedroom where the husband has Morning Joe on the TV and I shit you not, Joe Scarborough and Chris Matthews were talking about the good ol’ days when Reagan and Tip O’Neill liked each other and had a Scotch after the peoples’ business was done.

    I shit you not.

    If anything shows the vacuity of our fucked up political press corps it’s these two waxing nostalgic about some bygone era 30 fucking years ago. GET OVER IT. THEY’RE BOTH DEAD.

  2. 2
    Joey Maloney says:

    I half expected Christie to respond that if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land.

    I wonder how many Twinkies much of a campaign contribution I’d have to give Christie to get him to use that line on her some time?

  3. 3
    PeakVT says:

    How about a bit on Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts and the looming threat of climate change to coastal areas? the decision by Christie to ignore global warming and it’s possible effects when he came into office?

    Improved.

  4. 4
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    I half expected Christie to respond that if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land.

    This.

  5. 5
    sparrow says:

    Betty you are my favorite poster now (it helps that I agree 100%). You could seriously do a comedy routine…

  6. 6
    Jennifer says:

    …it’s hard to imagine how unless they add Jim Hoft to the ranks.

    For the love of god, woman, don’t give them any ideas!

  7. 7
    amk says:

    Clinton should have shaved her head on the segment and made a real statement, like Joan of Arc.

    Why ?

  8. 8
    Jennifer says:

    Ok, I have no fucking idea what’s up with THAT, but it won’t let me edit it, either.

  9. 9
    Mark S. says:

    after making a joke about the “elephant in the room”

    I wouldn’t have blamed Christie if he walked off the set.

  10. 10
    Mark S. says:

    Jeebus, Barbara’s 83? Well, she looks pretty good, but isn’t it time to retire?

  11. 11
    sparrow says:

    My mom is an annoying right-winger (of the “It’s my tribe since birth and LALALALA I can’t hear you” variety), but even she can’t stand Barbara Walters, whom she calls “Mush-mouth Walters”.

  12. 12
    Ted & Hellen says:

    Well, he is a tad bit corpulent.

  13. 13
    Schlemizel says:

    .>
    .>
    .>

    I’d gladly give him a grand Viking send off. If we could get Babs & the dick whisperer on the ship before we set it alight that would be a thing of beauty.

  14. 14
    JPL says:

    Health care costs need to be addressed in our country and I’m not sure Christie is the one to address it.

  15. 15
    tinare says:

    Bsrbara Walters may have once been a journalist. She’s now — and has been for at least 30 years — nothing more than a celebrity interviewer. So expecting her to do some hard-hitting political interview is mistake #1.

  16. 16
    Ash Can says:

    @Mark S.: This. Christie is a dIck about a lot of things, but for any journalist, let alone a leading one, to ask about this — especially when there’s so much of substance to talk about — is unacceptable, both for Christie and for the viewers. Betty’s suggested rejoinder is pitch-perfect.

  17. 17
    JohnK says:

    Just three days until Sunday Morning with John McCain. Gah!

  18. 18
    flukebucket says:

    I half expected Christie to respond that if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land.

    That is about as good as it can get right there.

  19. 19
    Paul says:

    Lieberman was a highly partisan actor on behalf of the insurance-financial-military complex, which filled his coffers sufficiently to retain office long after the people of Connecticut were sick of the mewling, sanctimonious prick. Instead, he got away with his many perfidies, lionized by ignorant prats like Milbank for his non-existent integrity and bipartisanship, and he’ll no doubt land on K Street, where he’ll rake in millions of dollars. We’re supposed to feel sorry for Lieberman? Boo-fucking-hoo.

    No kidding. I will never forget Lieberman’s role in enabling the idiotic Iraq war. If there was any justice, Lieberman and the other Iraq war supporters (67% of the American people at the time) would be given an invoice for the cost of the war (over a trillion dollars) that they would have to pay or got o jail. Why should the rest of us have to pay for their stupidity?

  20. 20
    Amir Khalid says:

    @flukebucket:
    If Chris Christie wants to be POTUS, let him run. Either his body can take the stress of a presidential campaign or it can’t. Either way, it will be obvious to everyone, including him.

  21. 21
    Butch says:

    I thought the Milbank column about Lieberman was idiotic even by Milbank’s low standards; I believe I will spare myself the Walters interviews.

  22. 22
    cmorenc says:

    Piers Morgan, who is himelf a prime exemplar of the rotten degradation of CNN and cable news programs, nevertheless at least put Liebermann in the correct corrall a couple of nights ago when he had a simultaneouls interview with Lieberman, McCain and Graham presented with the under-caption “The Three Amigos” running through much of the interview. Now, why did I subject myself to this drivel you might ask? Actually, I only saw it because I was at the gym on the step machine and CNN was on one of the teevees in the bank of them in front of the room, but blissfully it was like a silent movie to me because I didn’t plug into the sound feed with headphones, and I was too far away to read the closed captioning.

  23. 23
    The Golux says:

    As a Connecticut resident, I can’t tell you how thankful I am that the good residents of the Nutmeg State had the good sense not to replace Droopy Dog with Linda McMahon, who would have been barely different on the odiousness scale.

    I was quite impressed that Chris Murphy earned the same margin of victory as her first opponent, Richard Blumenthal, who I supposed was much more popular statewide.

  24. 24
    leinie (iPad) says:

    Must agree with Tbogg, that Holy Joe sanctimonious Lieberman can eat a farewell bag of salted dicks. I really hate that prototype for Emporer Palpatine.

  25. 25
    ericblair says:

    Talking about issues would require research. Unthinkable. The only acceptable topics of discourse are those brought up at some Georgetown cocktail party after six or so vodka martinis. Usually you’d be talking about the woman’s weight and the man’s hair, so, hey, give them some credit.

    This also helps explain the “he said/she said” “both sides do it” crap. Say you’ve just watched a debate between two experts on the major influences in early Byzantine poetry, you have to give a summary and criticism of the debate, and you flunked ninth-grade history. What would your response sound like? “Well, they both made some interesting points, but as always the truth lies somewhere in the middle, and it’s important to have a civil exchange of views on this complex issue, arglebarglevomit.”

  26. 26
    cmorenc says:

    WordPress thinks I’m missing “argument 2” again. From “line 990” in case I’m not sure which one that is.

  27. 27
    henrythefifth says:

    Also important that you forgot to note, Stephanopoulis mentioned that Barbara got Hilary to laugh! Gravitas.

  28. 28
    danielx says:

    Milbank is indeed a Villager in good standing, but he does have occasional moments of clarity.

    Why Walters is still considered worthy of interviewing either Christie or Clinton is a philosophical question that ranks right up there with asking just why is 27% of the American electorate considered batshit crazy. When paired with that oily little shit Stephanopoulos in the same broadcast, one is compelled to wonder whether ABC doesn’t have any better alternatives in the way of broadcast journalists. Such as one of the janitors at the Upper West Side studios…

  29. 29
    Tractarian says:

    I half expected Christie to respond that if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land.

    Z-Z-Z-ZING!

    Love it.

  30. 30
    PeakVT says:

    I half expected Christie to respond that if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land.

    He’s probably kicking himself for not saying that, because that would have gone over well with a lot of men, and plenty of women, too.

  31. 31
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    Has anybody considered the possibility that the reason why these shows are still on TV after so many years of abject failure, the reason why the TV studios haven’t been stormed by angry mobs and the occupants of the green rooms hauled out and hung up from the nearest lamppost, is that a majority of the American people do not wish to be informed on the issues of the day? Not just that they don’t care or it is too much trouble to find out, but that they really DO NOT WANT to know. That ignorance is rated a positive virtue.

  32. 32
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    @JPL:

    I think Christie ought to weigh in and lay out his ponderous thoughts on the heavy questions facing our huge country with the enormous costs of our health care.

    ;)

  33. 33
    catclub says:

    Meanwhile, torture is not to impinge on our soft little heads.

    http://www.esquire.com/blogs/p.....ure-121312

    I think the gist of the ruling was: “move heaven and earth to make sure that no details of what we did, come out”

  34. 34
    marianne19 says:

    Jeez, it’s Barbara Walters–she interviewed Ben Afflack, Honey Boo Boo and the 50 Shades of Gray lady. It wasn’t supposed to be issues, just fluff.

  35. 35
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @Odie Hugh Manatee:

    I think Christie ought to weigh in and lay out his ponderous thoughts on the heavy questions facing our huge country with the enormous costs of our health care.

    Where would he start, in seeking to cut the fat out of the bloated federal budget? Which departments would be the biggest losers?

  36. 36
    Biff Longbotham says:

    …if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land

    Win!!

  37. 37

    @danielx:

    Milbank is indeed a Villager in good standing, but he does have occasional moments of clarity.

    Maybe that’s why this particular comment rankles: someone capable of having even brief moments of clarity shouldn’t say something this stupid.

    Scolding other Dems was his stock in trade. It got him out of obscurity, onto a national ticket, and got him tons of Sunday morning talk-show gigs.

    Fortunately, his primary loss to Ned Lamont more or less took him off the talk shows, since he could no longer play the part of “Democrat who criticizes everyone to his left,” since he was no longer officially a Democrat.

  38. 38
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    I’m actually surprised, I’ve been predicting for years that Lieberman’s farewell speech would be a ‘bipartisan’ love-fest to make us all how with rage. I don’t have a lot of respect for the dick-whispering mad bitch Milbank, but this is a pile of horseshit by any standard, and then you get to the nub of it:

    I’ve followed Lieberman since his first Senate run in 1988, when I was in college in Connecticut with his son, Matt

    Shit like this is pretty common. You scratch a Village story, and you get to some kind of personal connection* that they think gives them real insight. That parents weekend Dana spent with the Liebermans in New Haven is far more informative than his support of the Iraq War or his torpedoing medicare expansion (which he had previously supported) because he didn’t like Anthony Weiner.

    *Jim VandeHei’s wife is a former DeLay staffer, Mika Brezinski and Liz Cheney were in the same Mommy and Me play group (I am not making that up)

  39. 39
  40. 40
    Count Ulster says:

    The hair question was stupid. But I think Christie’s weight is a legitimate campaign issue. How good is his health? Voters certainly have a right to consider this as part of the equation. A president suddenly dropping dead of a heart attack would be a problem, no?

    And from the horse-race side of the equation, there will be voters who, because of Christie’s weight, won’t vote for him. This isn’t any different than someone passing on McCain in the primary because he’s a cancer survivor and could suffer relapse. This kind of bias may not be fair, but it’s a very real thing. It’ll be interesting to see how it plays out in the polls. How big a percentage will this be?

  41. 41
    Steeplejack says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

    (Trying again, FYWP)

    Or that TV “news” is becoming increasingly irrelevant, especially the “deep interview” stuff, and it doesn’t matter which bloviating ass the networks put on, so they might as well stick with the comfortably recognizable Baba Wawa.

  42. 42
    burnspbesq says:

    Betty being dumb:

    the people of Connecticut were sick of the mewling, sanctimonious prick

    Your hypothesis fails to account for one important datum. Lieberman got re-elected in 2006. The people of Connecticut were presented with a perfectly viable alternative to Lieberman, and rejected it. There is only one hypothesis that is supported by the data, and yours ain’t it.

  43. 43
    steve says:

    Given the damage he inflicted with his war-mongering and petty spite, Lieberman deserved a much grander send-off, such as ejection from the chamber via catapult to a new home in a toxic waste dump.

    lol.

    Reminds me of Hunter ST on Nixon:

    If the right people had been in charge of Nixon’s funeral, his casket would have been launched into one of those open-sewage canals that empty into the ocean just south of Los Angeles. He was a swine of a man and a jabbering dupe of a president. Nixon was so crooked that he needed servants to help him screw his pants on every morning. Even his funeral was illegal. He was queer in the deepest way. His body should have been burned in a trash bin.

  44. 44
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Here’s a depressing thought: The great and talented Gilda Radner is gone, but Baba Wawa lives on, in the manner of Dick Clark.

  45. 45
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    Not just that they don’t care or it is too much trouble to find out, but that they really DO NOT WANT to know.

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ: Of course this is true. Pretty much always has been, with some occasional exceptions.

  46. 46
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    The people of Connecticut were presented with a perfectly viable alternative to Lieberman, and rejected it.

    @burnspbesq: By a fairly substantial margin, as I recall. No matter how much one may despise Lieberman, and there’s no reason not to if you’re not a CT resident, he delivered high-paying defense jobs and plenty of federal cash for his state, which is what a Senator is supposed to do. Voters rewarded him for it, as voters are supposed to do.

    If he’d run this cycle he’d have won.

  47. 47
    Death Panel Truck says:

    Next up: hair harrumphing and fat shaming

    Well, at least they were bipartisan about it. Normally Republicans are off-limits when the Villagers dole out criticism.

  48. 48
    Betty Cracker says:

    @burnspbesq:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    If I recall correctly, Lieberman won that election with less than 50% after the Republicans basically threw the race to ensure he’d win. And then Lieberman was such a vindictive dick about the ACA that his home state approval ratings fell to Cheney-esque levels, prompting him to “announce his retirement” rather than risk getting trounced. I stand by my assertion that people in Connecticut are sick of the weasel.

  49. 49
    Capri says:

    @danielx:
    Time and place.
    Walters is interviewing them as part of her non-news feature show. They were selected because they are celebrities. They will be sharing the hour along with folks who got famous for singing or being beautiful.
    Neither Barbara or George are pretending anything else. Walters asked Hilary about her hair because that was the #1 question people told her they wanted to know. Ditto Christie’s weight.

    It’s a major mistake to think that Walters and George are even PRETENDING that Walters is a news person conducting a news interview. She’s not. She’s a celebrity “journalist” pimping her personality-driven, news-free special of Good Morning Fucking America, another bastion of info-tainment.

    In that context, asking some hard-hitting question about budget priorities would be sort of dick-ish. Like railing about Michelle Obama ignoring the plight of overweight Americans when she sends you her favorite Christmas Cookie recipe.

  50. 50
    ericblair says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Shit like this is pretty common. You scratch a Village story, and you get to some kind of personal connection* that they think gives them real insight.

    Not only is it irritating, irrelevant, and just confirms to people what a circle jerk Washington is, but has the bigger problem of overweighing private information. They think it’s important and useful information because only a few people know it.

    This is a big problem with actual decisionmakers as well; in war and politics, there’s way too much attention paid to some covert information about how some foreign secretary wipes his ass then what he actually says out loud to the public.

    The alternative to this sort of shit is actually reading the fucking open media and public records and devoting some time and brains to analyzing that. While the CIA does this quite a bit now, it takes actual knowledge and work, so the Villagers are never gonna go for it. Gossipmongering is way easier.

  51. 51
    PurpleGirl says:

    @Mark S.: Actually I think she’s had too much plastic surgery.

  52. 52
    handsmile says:

    @Betty Cracker: , @ Forum Transmitted Disease, @burnspbesq

    Through the miracle of Wikipedia, the results of the 2006 Connecticut US Senate race:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.....icut,_2006

    Lieberman received 49.71% of the vote, Ned Lamont (D) 39.73%, and Alan Schlesinger (R) 9.62%.

    “Exit polls showed that Lieberman won the vote of 33% of Democrats, 54% of independents and 70% of Republicans.”

    Lamont had defeated Lieberman in the Democratic primary that spring 52%-48%. Lieberman’s re-election, now as an “independent” (Connecticut for Lieberman), was secured largely through state Republicans’ decision not to support their own party’s candidate.

    Now that he will no longer be befouling the Senate chambers, Lieberman will surely be joining his pal Gramps as a constant noxious presence among the Sunday morning bobble-heads. Mewling sanctimony is a required element of the catechism for Village congregants.

  53. 53
    JustRuss says:

    I half expected Christie to respond that if a woman with a speech impediment could become a top broadcast journalist, surely a fat man could aspire to the highest office in the land.

    Yes, it would be nice to see Christie use his jerkish superpower for good instead of evil occasionally.

  54. 54
    mds says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    If I recall correctly, Lieberman won that election with less than 50% after the Republicans basically threw the race to ensure he’d win. And then Lieberman was such a vindictive dick about the ACA that his home state approval ratings fell to Cheney-esque levels, prompting him to “announce his retirement” rather than risk getting trounced.

    You do in fact recall correctly. Lieberman received 49.7% of the vote while being supported by the national GOP establishment over their own official nominee, the admittedly feckless Alan Schlesinger. Lieberman did get a majority of independents, running ads declaring “No one wants to end the Iraq War more than I do,” and basking in his No vote against Alito while conveniently omitting his vote for cloture. Post-election buyers’ remorse didn’t take too many months to show up in the polls. And yes, his endorsement of the 2008 GOP presidential candidate and his threat to filibuster health care reform didn’t help a lot. If he were going to win in 2012, he’d probably have to do it with fewer Connecticut Dems in his corner, though I suppose Chris Murphy might not have jumped in if Holy Joe weren’t retiring.

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