Sunday Evening Open Thread

Ahhh, memories. Gail Collins:

There’s a national accord that thin is generally better than fat. However, it’s hardly the biggest issue when you’re picking a governor. There are citizens all over the country who would trade their more compact leaders for Christie in a second. Just ask somebody in Pennsylvania. Or Illinois. The guy in Florida has the physique of a greyhound and the state is totally miserable.

In 2006, New Yorkers elected Eliot Spitzer, a man who could not possibly have looked fitter. We probably had the best B.M.I. in the National Governors Association. Just over a year later, he was gone in a sex scandal. You had to wonder if exceptional leanness might occasionally be accompanied by exceptional friskiness. As we all know, a governor in South Carolina once vanished for what his staff claimed were body-toning hikes on the Appalachian Trail when he was actually committing adultery in Argentina.

Being a governor is not normally a physically demanding job. You certainly have your crises — Christie got through a terrible one during the Sandy storm. But day to day, week to week, the effort level is often pretty much what you choose to make it. “Getting to be governor is the hardest part,” former Gov. William Weld of Massachusetts once told me. “I used to go on vacation for a week at a time, and I wouldn’t even call in.” After the Spitzer scandal, New York was virtually governor-free for several years, due to one thing or another. It wasn’t terrific, yet we got along…

I lived through Bill Weld’s tenure, and he’s right — at least in a weak guv/strong lege state like our beloved Commonwealth, there’s only so much harm a ‘disengaged’ governor can do. (Heck, that’s how we got through Willard Romney’s stint in the Corner Office, most of which he spent setting up to run for president.) Weld’s only the second Republican I ever voted for (against this guy, who combined all the worst features of Larry Summers and Rick Santorum) and probably the last one I ever will… but now y’all can understand why Mr. Bill just declined to run in the upcoming Senate race.

***********

Speaking of premature nostalgia, I understand there’s a Grammy broadcast later this evening. Are we all going to be keeping score of the semi-deliberate nip-slips and butt-flashes, or are there more productive uses for the end of the weekend?






74 replies
  1. 1
    Knockabout says:

    Keep it up, guys! A few more posts and this clusterfuck of a post will be off the front page!

  2. 2
    Thlayli says:

    My office is closed tomorrow. The roads are clear right now, but supposedly it’s going to rain tonight and they’re worried about ice.

  3. 3
    Suffern Ace says:

    Hmmm. I wonder how Spitzer’s receding hairline fits into this. And I do think we had a governor. Just not one that she liked all that much.

  4. 4
    gene108 says:

    Need moar Open Thread. Where’ s Doug or mistermix to put another up?

  5. 5
    sb says:

    Currently watching the story behind “Quadrophenia”; very cool one hour documentary on one of the greatest concept albums ever.

    Grammys? GTFOML!!

  6. 6
    Knockabout says:

    Oh Zandar should put up about 5 of them.

    You guys should really come down here, it’s lots of fun.

    Sadly, I believe it will be Zandar’s last post here.

  7. 7
    Redshirt says:

    Oh the drama.

    On another note, I still yearn for a world of pneumatic tubes. Messages going “ZOOM” all over town in a series of tubes.

  8. 8
  9. 9
    Mnemosyne says:

    What’s wrong with the governor of Illinois? I was under the impression that Pat Quinn was pretty inoffensive.

    I mean, sure, there’s a higher-than-average chance that he’ll end up going to prison for corruption given the track record of the previous three governors, but why drag Illinois in as a problem state when you’ve got Scott Walker just across the border in Wisconsin?

  10. 10
    Steve says:

    NJ is not a weak-governor state. But setting that aside, yeah, let’s have more of our “liberal media voices” like Gail Collins write columns that take for granted that Chris Christie is a good governor. You’re really doing the Lord’s work here, Gail.

  11. 11
    WereBear says:

    I find the relative avoirdupois of any given candidate an exceedingly moot point.

    But when a person cannot even walk across a ball field, I think their brain is being deprived of oxygen.

  12. 12
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jeffreyw:

    G and I both have colds, so I’m making baked potato soup for dinner tonight. This recipe is pretty close to the one I’m using.

  13. 13
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    I wouldn’t trade Quinn for Christie if you threw in a million bucks. Quinn’s nothing special, but ‘nothing special’ is better than anything the GOP has to offer.

    Speaking of Scott Walker, the one time I can remember Pat Quinn doing something interesting is when the Democrats of the Wisconsin State Senate skipped town in order to prevent the Republicans from having a quorum, and Quinn (indirectly) offered to give them asylum as long as they needed it.

  14. 14
    NotMax says:

    or are there more productive uses for the end of the weekend?

    Yes. Yes there are.

    Next question?

  15. 15
    jeffreyw says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’m a fan of baked potatoes and also a fan of potato soup. What’s not to like? Also, Bacon!

  16. 16
    WereBear says:

    Holy pasta fazzoli, that was weird. A red arrow snuck over the left side of the screen where I was about to click, so I inadvertently clicked on it, and they wanted me to take a survey.

    I know I didn’t imagine it.

  17. 17
    cathyx says:

    There’s a $1million reward for Dorner.

  18. 18
    Raven says:

    Illinois doesn’t hit a bucket in the first TEN minutes of the half and they are ahead at halftime!!!

  19. 19
    JWL says:

    Wow. You have voted republican?

    There’s a Seinfeld episode in which an emotional Kramer tells Elaine (something like), “You USED to be up here [hand above his head] But now?!…” [drops his hand down as far as it can go].

  20. 20
    Baud says:

    @JWL:

    We’ve all done things we’re ashamed of.

    @cathyx:

    Time to get the old posse together.

  21. 21
    gene108 says:

    @Steve:

    But setting that aside, yeah, let’s have more of our “liberal media voices” like Gail Collins write columns that take for granted that Chris Christie is a good governor.

    I think that’s Christie’s greatest strength. No matter what he does or he pisses off, no one makes the connection that it might not be a good thing to do or make him a bad politician or governor for having done it.

    I think Christie’s a latter day Reagan, with the same level of Teflon coating and media adoration.

  22. 22
    Baud says:

    @gene108:

    It’s like during the election, when some reporter said Ohio had to be a swing state because Romney couldn’t win without Ohio. Christie has to be a good governor because the GOP needs to have a an office holder whose not crazy.

  23. 23

    “Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome” bests the flipping Grammy’s by a significant margin, imho. 8pm ET on the Syphilis Channel.

    Otherwise, tonight is all about drinking home brew, reheating some frozen turkey burgers, and slowly beginning to despair at having to return to work in the morning. Yuck.

    As one e-card stated, can we skip over the freezing part and jump right to bitching about how hot it is?

  24. 24
    Baud says:

    @Baud:

    Ugh. That’s “who’s.”

  25. 25
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @gene108: I think he’s more like the new Giuliani. Nobody liked him, then there was a crisis and everybody likes him, but what nobody liked is still there. As I forget who said first, nobody wants to vote for President Eric Cartman. Sooner or later somebody’s gonna notice that all his public tantrums have been directed against women

  26. 26
    Cacti says:

    Christie is a sensible centrist…

    Who goes to closed door retreats with the Koch brothers, and vetos minimum wage increases supported by 80% of his state’s voters.

  27. 27
    Suffern ACE says:

    @WereBear: it seems very medieval to have to come up with a defense against arrows. Did you get a glimpse of the archer? If he was mounted, you’re in for a lot of trouble.

  28. 28
    dmsilev says:

    @JWL:

    Wow. You have voted republican?

    She voted against John Silber. An entirely rational and indeed common activity at the time.

  29. 29
    Schlemizel says:

    The Motor City Meathead only has 60 days left to keep his promise!
    http://countingdownto.com/countdown/176293

    ”If Barack Obama becomes the president in November, again, I will be either be dead or in jail by this time next year.” – 4/12/2012

    Come on Teddy, are you a man of your your word or just another loud mouthed asshole with a tiny penis and a big gun?

  30. 30
    dmsilev says:

    This weekend’s productive activities amounted to slugging down ibuprofens and staying in bed. @#$# ice patch gifted me with a bruised and/or cracked rib and a sprained rotator cuff.

  31. 31
    Mnemosyne says:

    @gene108:

    I think Christie’s a latter day Reagan, with the same level of Teflon coating and media adoration.

    I just took a tour of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library (not entirely of my own volition, it was for work) and it was really striking how much of Reagan’s political success was due to luck, not to some magical force of personality. To a great extent, his election was a reaction against a lot of the economic events of the late 1970s (oil crisis, inflation, etc.) and he was lucky enough to be able to offer a different (though ultimately stupid) path.

    I’m eagerly awaiting Rick Perlstein’s upcoming Reagan biography because I think it’s going to do a good job of explaining how much of Reagan’s success had to do with ongoing political clashes and not all that much to do with the man himself.

    Shorter me: Reagan’s charms are overrated, especially in hindsight.

  32. 32
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Downton.

  33. 33
    Schlemizel says:

    oh for fucks sake!

    I accidentally used the adult work for dick, pee-pee, wang, root, joint, rod, fuck-stick, boner, meat missile so of course I am in moderation while this post with all the juvenile words will sail along unmolested

    FYWP!

  34. 34
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    @Knockabout: please rearrange these words into a well known phrase or saying – off fuck. thank you.

    ps i need help with a computer problem. whenever i type in upper case using the shift key my browser reverts to the previous screen i have viewed, i must have screwed up something on my settings but i have no idea what. can anyone help

  35. 35
    Baud says:

    Mnemosyne:

    I obviously prefer Obama to Reagan, but Obama’s path to power could be described the same way.

  36. 36
    Schlemizel says:

    The Motor City Meathead only has 60 days left to keep his promise!
    http://countingdownto.com/countdown/176293

    ”If Barack Obama becomes the president in November, again, I will be either be dead or in jail by this time next year.” – 4/12/2012

    Come on Teddy, are you a man of your your word or just another loud mouthed asshole with a tiny dick, pee-pee, wang, root, joint, rod, fuck-stick, boner, meat missile and a big gun?

  37. 37
    efogldman says:

    @Knockabout:

    Oh Zandar should put up about 5 of them

    OK, you want to troll a particular front pager, I don’t understand it, but its a free web.
    Now go away and leave the rest of us the fuck alone.

  38. 38
    Cacti says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Reagan’s charms are overrated, especially in hindsight.

    Rosalynn Carter had Reagan’s appeal pretty well nailed down when she said “he made us [white people] feel comfortable with our prejudices.”

    There isn’t a big enough cracker vote to make Reagan’s formula a winner again.

  39. 39
    David Koch says:

    IOKIYAR

    Can you imagine how the corporate media would be hammering a Democratic party presidential candidate if he/she were morbidly obese.

    As it is, the Broderites never missed a chance to whack Clinton for being chubby, Al Gore for having a pouch, and Hillary for having “cankles”.

  40. 40
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Baud:

    Oh, I agree. I think Obama is well aware of it, too, since he has made the comparison himself. Unfortunately, some people on the left don’t seem to understand that he’s comparing his ability to change minds and policies to Reagan’s, not saying he wants the same policies as Reagan’s.

    That’s why I frequently apply the old saying, “Luck favors the prepared” to Obama. He got to where he is partially through luck, but he was fully prepared to take advantage of that luck once he was there.

  41. 41
    max says:

    Speaking of premature nostalgia, I understand there’s a Grammy broadcast later this evening. , or are there more productive uses for the end of the weekend?

    Well, as in 1983, 1993 and 2003, Good Lord, why? Are these people doing penance? Truly, there is only one award show worth watching and that’s the Oscars, and that’s only for the five or six minutes it takes for desire to stab oneself in the eye to develop.

    Are we all going to be keeping score of the semi-deliberate nip-slips and butt-flashes

    In this modern world, we have the internet, so if I want to see something like I can wait til tomorrow, when the strange little people who keep breathless track of this sort of thing explain the best bits, or I can type certain search terms into Google and I’m off to the races.

    it was really striking how much of Reagan’s political success was due to luck

    I think all presidents have been beneficiaries of enormous luck. Reagan happened to be lucky enough to lose to Ford so he was there to get lucky when Carter had problems.

    Of course, a lot of that luck was due to the machinations of rich people, so there’s that.

    max
    [‘It was inevitable that someone would attempt to use the southern reaction to roll back any economic advances we had made.’]

  42. 42
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    Cocktails and Blow. The movie you silly fucks. Mr. Q gets to look at Penelope Cruz and I get to look at Johnny Depp.

  43. 43
    Baud says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    This exactly. And this:

    He got to where he is partially through luck, but he was fully prepared to take advantage of that luck once he was there.

    is what 11-dimensional chess is really all about.

  44. 44
    David Koch says:

    @a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): Penelope Cruz’s S&M scenes are hawt.

  45. 45
    Chris says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    I just took a tour of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library (not entirely of my own volition, it was for work) and it was really striking how much of Reagan’s political success was due to luck, not to some magical force of personality.

    I think a lot of politicians take the credit or blame for things that were beyond their control, and Reagan definitely is a prime example. Everything you mentioned, plus being able to retroactively claim credit for ending the Cold War.

    Also, Reagan was lucky enough to run for office at a moment when the “lazy welfare queens” and “law and order” platitudes got you a “silent majority.” He wasn’t smarter or better than McCain and Romney – those two are just unlucky enough to live in a country where the same messages Reagan spouted are becoming third rails instead of crowd pleasers. It’s been pointed out more than once that if racial demographics now were the same as in the eighties, those two would’ve won big just like Reagan.

  46. 46
    askew says:

    In what crazy world is Christie a better governor than Illinois? Is this another example of both sides do it?

    As for the GRAMMYS, I’ve heard a rumor of Chris Brown and Rihanna dueting together. That makes my skin crawl.

  47. 47
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    @max:

    People like watching the performances and can’t get tickets? I dunno. I mean I won’t be watching either but I really don’t get why some people get so snobby about awards shows. I watch the Oscars, although I turned them off the year James Franco stunk up the joint as host, and I’m not confident in MacFarlane being any better.

  48. 48
    Suffern ACE says:

    @David Koch: because republicans are fat in a way that says steak dinners and cigars are back in style. Democrats are fat in the way that says sissy earth tones and failed lentil diets. I could write most columns in the NYT for the past twenty years using that “fresh perspective.”

  49. 49
    Hill Dweller says:

    @Cacti:Who goes to closed door retreats with the Koch brothers, and vetos minimum wage increases supported by 80% of his state’s voters.

    Unemployment hit a 32 year high in Christie’s 3rd year in office. He was caught lying about Race to the Top and the tunnel project’s costs. He blocked same sex marriage legislation and an increase of the minimum wage. ALEC wrote several of his legislative proposals. Some of the tax subsidies he awarded to donors are shady.

    Like Ryan and Rubio, Christie’s failed policies are waved away by the Village, who need to promote Republicans for “balance”.

  50. 50
    Steeplejack says:

    @Steve:

    There’s nothing in Collins’s column that says Christie is a good governor. She says that he is popular, which is demonstrably true but not the same thing.

  51. 51
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    @Schlemizel:

    I accidentally used the adult word for dick, pee-pee, wang, root, joint, rod, fuck-stick, boner, meat missile

    Schlong?

    (That’s the best one, by the way. Much like what it describes, it just feels good in the mouth.)

  52. 52
    David Koch says:

    @askew:

    I’ve heard a rumor of Chris Brown and Rihanna dueting together

    Word is they’ll be singing “Saturday Night’s is Alright for Fighting” and “I Get a Kick Out of You”.

  53. 53
    Steeplejack says:

    Nip-slips are so last decade. Side-boob is where it’s at.

  54. 54

    The last time I watched the Grammys, the Carpenters were up for several awards.

    Now excuse me while I go chase those darn kids off my lawn.

  55. 55
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Steeplejack:

    Side-boob is where it’s at.

    One wonders what will be next. Undercleavage?

  56. 56
    IowaOldLady says:

    Christie would be enormous (see what I did there?) fun to watch during the pressure of a national campaign. The guy would shout at press and public alike. That jovial guy on Letterman would be gone.

  57. 57
    SatanicPanic says:

    @askew: That’s in bad taste. Regardless of what Chris and Rihanna want to do, that should never have been greenlit.

  58. 58
    raven says:

    And the Illini knock off the #18 Gophers in the barn!!!!!

  59. 59
    David Koch says:

    @Steeplejack: Exactly. Michelle Dockery rocked the SAG awards with her gravity defying side-boobies

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/ho.....wards.html

  60. 60

    @David Koch: I saw “Battleship” last night wherein [spoiler alert] Rihanna kicked serious ass. Of course, she have some serious ordnance to go with it, but just sayin’. Chris, watch yourself.

  61. 61
    IowaOldLady says:

    @Mustang Bobby: Hey, the last fun thing I remember watching at an award show was Sacheen Littlefeather turning down Marlon Brando’s award.

  62. 62
    Chris says:

    @Cacti:

    Rosalynn Carter had Reagan’s appeal pretty well nailed down when she said “he made us [white people] feel comfortable with our prejudices.”

    I think there’s a similarity between the Reagan revolution then and the teabaggers today. Same basic principle of “conservatism just disgraced itself like nobody’s business, oh well, let’s just sweep it all under the rug, pretend it never happened and embrace a true conservative movement.” (Substituting segregation, Vietnam, COINTELPRO, Nixon and all the other uglies of the sixties and seventies for George W. Bush).

    In fact, I think the teabaggers were probably a very conscious effort to imitate that, hence all the comparisons between Obama and Carter.

  63. 63

    @IowaOldLady: Was that the one where they had the streaker and David Niven quipped, “It’s too bad that the only thing that man will be remembered for is taking off his clothes and revealing his shortcomings,” or words to that effect?

  64. 64
    IowaOldLady says:

    @Mustang Bobby: Could have been!

  65. 65
    Schlemizel says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:
    Yeah, I should have included that one too but I figured I had to stop somewhere
    blue veined porridge gun
    leader of the sack
    goat filler
    100% all-beef thermometer
    Bigus Dickus
    21st digit
    Admiral Winky
    trouser snake
    one-eyed snake
    one-eyed spitting cobra
    Jake the one-eyed snake
    Chief of staff
    Bald monkey
    Beard splitter
    Cherry poppin’ daddy
    Beef Bayonet
    Beef baton
    Clam digger
    Crank
    Custard cannon
    purple-helmeted spartan of love
    Dicksicle
    Dingus
    dong
    brain down south
    skin flute
    flesh cigar
    WIlly
    John Thomas
    love gun
    love torpedo

    I could go on but the only one we are not allowed to use by WP is Pea-Nuss because that would just be so wrong!

  66. 66
    Steve says:

    @Steeplejack: Maybe you take “there are citizens all over the country who would trade their more compact leaders for Christie in a second” as solely a reference to popularity but I think it pretty strongly implies competence.

  67. 67
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Steve:

    I’m still wondering what Collins has against Pat Quinn, fer goshsakes.

  68. 68
    gbear says:

    @David Koch:

    Maybe they’ll invite Frank Ocean to sing with them. Hope that the audience cuts loose and booes Chris Brown’s ass off the stage.

    And for something almost completely different: Carl Wilson’s 1981 song about how much he appreciated winning a Grammy.

  69. 69
    JS says:

    I’d be willing to swap Pat Quinn with Christie only to see how many consecutive days of getting the finger from Mike Madigan it takes to put Mr. Doughnut in the hospital with a stroke.

    [It’s not like the IL House Speaker-for-Life (30 years so far) is letting Quinn do anything, and Madigan’s nominally a fellow Democrat.]

  70. 70
    WereBear says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’m eagerly awaiting Rick Perlstein’s upcoming Reagan biography

    Dang, sounds HOT. Now I am too!

  71. 71
    David in NY says:

    OMG. I’d have voted even for the Old Romney over Silber and Weld for sure. I had no idea that was who opposed Weld.

  72. 72
    Randy P says:

    Just ask somebody in Pennsylvania.

    I live in Pennsylvania. I don’t want Christie.

  73. 73
    Scotius says:

    @David in NY: I lived Maine at the time, but I remember anti-Silber bumper stickers that said “I’m mad, but I’m not crazy”.

  74. 74
    Steeplejack says:

    @Steve:

    I think you are misreading Collins’s sardonic style. YMMV, of course.

Comments are closed.