Open Thread

Is it wrong that the Buzzfeed political section doesn’t piss me off? It’s the same kind of over-the-top or insider bullshit as Politico, just more honest. Buzzfeed isn’t pretending to be anything other than a link-baiting/link-whoring enterprise.

At any rate, check out this one from Buzzfeed. Bless your heart, Ben Smith…

90 replies
  1. 1
    Ash Can says:

    Fuck you, Cole.

    Warning to everyone else: DO NOT click on that link.

    Ronald Reagan, first on the list. Christamighty. How disgusting.

    I need a fucking drink.

  2. 2
    Wag says:

    Gotta admit it. If I were a gay Republican, I’d hit GHW Bush

  3. 3
    Wag says:

    @Ash Can

    Hey, if you go to the bottom of the list they give you an opportunity to hit First Ladies, too.

  4. 4
    Hann1bal says:

    I know Harding had at least two or three extramarital affairs, and possibly an illegitimate child, so apparently there were some women who would hit that.

  5. 5
  6. 6
    Redshirt says:

    Buzzfeed rules.

    Kittens, lists, recipes, and gossip. The Killer App.

  7. 7
    General Stuck says:

    Wingnut biology 101

    “When a physician removes a child from a woman, that is the largest organ in a body. That’s a big thing. That’s a big surgery. You don’t have any other organs in your body that are bigger than that.”

    — Alabama state Rep. Mary Sue McClurkin (R), in an interview with the Montgomery Advertiser, defending her sweeping anti-abortion bill.

    It was only a matter of time

    The Obama administration is planning a decade-long scientific effort to examine the workings of the human brain and build a comprehensive map of its activity, seeking to do for the brain what the Human Genome Project did for genetics.

    Obummer mind control. And don’t fall asleep. Never fall asleep.

  8. 8
    Alex says:

    #LiberalTips2AvoidRape is the latest topic to trend in twitter. It’s split between staring at the train wreck and conservatives treating it very seriously. Because, you know, guns.


    And Jennifer Rubin has hopped on the “criticizing Ted Cruz is the real racism” bandwagon started by

    Her entire column is insane. The best quote from it is “The lack of interest in what the president was doing on the night of the Sept. 11, 2012, Benghazi, Libya, attacks, which is highlighted by multiple interviews in which no reporter asked him about it.”

  9. 9
    Steeplejack says:

    DVR Alert!

    TCM is showing Peter Weir’s The Year of Living Dangerously (1982) at 4:00 p.m. EST tomorrow. I haven’t seen this one in a very long time, but I think it should hold up pretty well, if you can forget while watching it that the young, hot, brooding Mel Gibson would later go ape-shit crazy. It’s also got Sigourney Weaver in her prime and Linda Hunt in a stunning (and Oscar-winning) role as a male photographer. Maurice Jarre’s score is excellent too.

    Oh, yeah, takes place in Indonesia in the ’60s. Trailer here.

  10. 10
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Hann1bal: I remembered Harding had a reputation as a womanizer, so I thought this anecdote was about him, but it was the Coolidges

    … an old joke about Calvin Coolidge when he was President … The President and Mrs. Coolidge were being shown [separately] around an experimental government farm. When [Mrs. Coolidge] came to the chicken yard she noticed that a rooster was mating very frequently. She asked the attendant how often that happened and was told, “Dozens of times each day.” Mrs. Coolidge said, “Tell that to the President when he comes by.” Upon being told, President asked, “Same hen every time?” The reply was, “Oh, no, Mr. President, a different hen every time.” President: “Tell that to Mrs. Coolidge.”

  11. 11
    srv says:

    Can we get that asteroid to make a U-turn?

  12. 12
    Joseph Nobles says:

    Anything is better than the current conservative Twitter hashtag toy: #LiberalTips2AvoidRape. No, I’m not lying. No, you really don’t want to go look. Trust me on this.

    ETA: Sorry, Alex, you beat me to it.

  13. 13
    jamick6000 says:

    I just went to the front page of the Politico. The big headline is “OBAMA, THE PUPPET MASTER”

    I wish the lord would take me now.

  14. 14
    Anya says:

    Speaking of good looking, yet horrible presidents, I’ve discovered today that through my maternal grandmother, I am related to Franklin Pierce.

  15. 15
    max says:

    It’s the same kind of over-the-top or insider bullshit as Politico, just more honest.

    SB ‘with vastly fewer words’.

    Buzzfeed isn’t pretending to be anything other than a link-baiting/link-whoring enterprise.

    A curated SEO page! It’s hard to be dumber than cable TV news but by God they’ve pulled it off and good for them. The Great Link Loop Singularity hasn’t happened quite yet, but they’re almost there.*

    At any rate, check out this one from Buzzfeed.

    Well, that was unfortunate.

    [‘As always, Buzzfeed is pushing links to a bad transcription of a description of the sizzle of spoiled steak.’]

    * If an actual singularity were to develop, it would be just that: a black hole. Of self-referential stupidity.

  16. 16
    David in NY says:

    That link has the only bad picture of Jackie Kennedy that I’ve ever seen.

    And did Grover Cleveland cheat on Frances, or did he meet her after he became the “Pa” of the old political jibe?

    And the best comment I got to on Buzzfeed was, “I don’t have sex with dead people.”

  17. 17

    Zod damn it. I feel dumber for having clicked that link. Me go drinky stuff now. Beer gud.

  18. 18
  19. 19
    lamh35 says:

    Yeah BOYYYYYYY (in my best John Witherspoon voice)!!!!
    thanks to my daddy and his TITAN, I can say good bye to the damn air mattress that had a slow leak, so I had to pump that bish up ev’ry damn night!!!! Also Thank u President’s Day sale at Mattress firm! Now I can just buy furniture pieces as I see ’em. I got a place to sleep and a place to watch tv in the living room. I can live with that right now.

  20. 20
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Anya: Um…. you know which other president that makes you related to….? No offense, you can’t pick your 14th cousins, thirteen times removed.

  21. 21
    Face says:

    @Joseph Nobles: I domt get it. Is it liberals not getting raped or quotes from liberals about rape or is it about Pete Rose and chicken fingers?

  22. 22
    cmorenc says:

    The most puzzling result is that NANCY REAGAN was the most hit-upon of all the first wives in the survey @75%, although Michelle Obama did respectably at 66%. OK, so the picture shown was of the young Nancy Reagan, but um…maybe more folks (especially conservative folks) have a waif fetish than we thought.

    Yes, the “who’s hot” poll of several past Presidents and First Ladies is sort of idiotic, but OTOH it’s kind of morbidly fascinating to view the poll results as a mirror of people’s attitudes on appearances.

  23. 23
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    @Anya: So was Barbara Bush IIRC.

  24. 24
    Funkula says:

    Buzzfeed is just about the Worst Thing Ever. However, it has strong competition from those “Content Around the Web” boxes featuring links to a dozen or so awful sites like Newsmax, Cafe Mom, and Bossip. I see them a few places (Wonkette being a prime example) and they piss me off every time.

  25. 25
    Anya says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: OMFG! I’ve just discovered this today and now I am reading wikipedia. From now on, I will only claim my African side.

  26. 26
    Joseph Nobles says:

    @Face: It’s lib-shaming and slut-shaming all wrapped up in goatse gift paper.

  27. 27
    Emma says:

    @General Stuck: canonically, it’s “don’t blink” but that works too.

  28. 28
    JGabriel says:


    The most puzzling result is that NANCY REAGAN was the most hit-upon of all the first wives in the survey @75%, although Michelle Obama did respectably at 66%.

    I saw that too, and it made me wonder: Who are the sick fuck 16% (minimum) who must have voted for both of them?

    I just don’t get it.


  29. 29
    Comrade Mary says:

    Nixon looked unexpectedly hawt in his Buzzfeed photo. I think it was the Superman kiss curl.

    I now want to burn off my fingers for typing that.

    To atone, here is a video of the goddamn cutest thing in the universe.

    (Warning: may perturb any pets in the vicinity. Not to be elected president.)

  30. 30
    MikeJ says:

    Reagan was a Democrat when that picture was taken.

  31. 31
    kindness says:

    I’m not gonna ask how John picked that article over all the ones thrown down by Buzzfeed today. Did the title drag you in John?

  32. 32
    mai naem says:

    @Anya: You realize that means that you are related to Barbara Bush? That Robert Wuhl history show on HBO mentioned Barbara Bush being related to Franklin Pierce.

  33. 33
    hilts says:

    Fox News dirtbag and White House Correspondents Assn president Ed Henry outdouches himself

    “Speaking on behalf of the White House Correspondents Association, I can say a broad cross section of our members from print, radio, online and TV have today expressed extreme frustration to me about having absolutely no access to the President of the United States this entire weekend,” Henry said in a statement, relayed in a White House pool report. “There is a very simple but important principle we will continue to fight for today and in the days ahead: transparency.”


  34. 34
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    Fuck Buzzfeed with the rustiest of rusty farm implements. Read the tongue bath the NYT style section gave to Ben Smith Sunday and tell me it doesn’t make your skin crawl. It is a compendium of everything unoriginal, uninspired and wrong with Internet “journalism.” It makes HuffPo look brilliant by comparison, and that, my friends, is saying quite a bit.

  35. 35
    mai naem says:

    Hate to ask the obvious but how come JFK wasn’t on the list? He is undoubtedly the hawtest modern president to date. I think Obama would be second. GHWB looks good in his picture too.

  36. 36
    Mike E says:

    @Steeplejack: Great flick. Loved the way Linda Hunt’s character would wind up his Bell & Howell with a kerchief. Well acted, even with Sigourney Weaver’s disappearing British accent. Peter Weir rules.

  37. 37
    Suffern ACE says:

    The only one I would have done is Nixon. I think I could have changed him for the better.

  38. 38
    Shortstop says:

    @Mike E: agreed; tremendous flick.

  39. 39
    Shortstop says:

    @Suffern ACE: possibly the funniest thing ever said on a blog known for its hilarity.

  40. 40

    @kindness: The possibility of being sweetly ravaged by Ronnie Raygun?

  41. 41
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @ranchandsyrup: Peggy Noon publicly fantasized about stealing his shoe to use as an instrument of auto-erotic pleasure.

  42. 42
    ruemara says:

    meh, it’s a site for stupid fun. Reading anything else into it is silly.

  43. 43
    Anya says:

    @mai naem: I know. I guess she’s not as horrible as her son. She’s like a harmless grandmother.

  44. 44

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Of course Nooners did. That lady is a laugh a minute.
    Just think of the jelly-belly flavored kisses.

  45. 45
    Ash Can says:

    @Comrade Mary: Thank you. That’s a great antidote to John’s vomitrocious (h/t Muffy) link.

  46. 46
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    Thanks for that nightmare, Cole. Who the hell knew Rutherford Hayes was hot in his youth? ::Fans herself:: Though he does have that not quite right look to his eyes that Richard Manuel always had. Hayes got the most votes of presidents too. The First Ladies votes were a bit disturbing, as mentioned previously.

  47. 47
    Steeplejack says:


    Don’t blink for Doctor Who, don’t go to sleep for Invasion of the Body Snatchers. As a mature gentleman, Stuck is a classicist.

  48. 48
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @ruemara: It’s run by Young Republicans. They are clumsily trying to make Republicans “cool” all the time. Like an anti-Gawker (except Gawker doesn’t really have an agenda, they just happen to be urbanites and the blog entries reflect their views, which vary from person to person but certainly don’t align with the pronouncements of the 147th GOPintern.

  49. 49
    PsiFighter37 says:

    The NYT did a profile on Ben Smith recently. Quite revealing to know that nepotism, a passing fancy with politics, and familiarity with acronyms that make you sound like a teenage girl can get you that far in life. Now I understand why I disliked him so much when he was wanking at Politico.

    Bring on the meteor, bitches!

  50. 50
    askew says:


    I love that article. It is so deluded:

    The president’s staff often finds Washington reporters whiny, needy and too enamored with trivial matters or their own self-importance.

    There’s the classic weekend document dump to avoid negative coverage.

    They are also masters of scrutiny avoidance. The president has not granted an interview to print reporters at The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, POLITICO and others in years. These are the reporters who are often most likely to ask tough, unpredictable questions.

    I love that they think those print reporters will ask tough ?s. How deluded. And the fact that they are mad that the WH uses the Friday night news dump which is so common among multiple WHs that is was a plot point on the West Wing.

  51. 51
    MaryRC says:

    @a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): I noticed Mr. Hayes too, looking somewhat … intense. But are both his eyes looking in the same direction? Hard to tell in that faded photograph.

  52. 52
    Roger Moore says:


    Who are the sick fuck 16% (minimum) who must have voted for both of them?

    The kind of guy who will sleep with any woman who will have them. I think that must make up at least 16% of the population.

  53. 53
    Maeve says:

    I’d totally do it with James Madison (same height as me – 5′ 4″ !)= and Dolly could join in if she chose

  54. 54
    artem1s says:

    how odd, gerald ford looks like Frankenstein’s monster, a la Karloff.

  55. 55
    Redshift says:

    @General Stuck:

    “When a physician removes a child from a woman, that is the largest organ in a body. That’s a big thing. That’s a big surgery. You don’t have any other organs in your body that are bigger than that.”

    And what would childbirth be in this twisted worldview? A huge growth falling off by itself?

    I’m just marveling at the extreme stupidity of tying legal rights to the size of the fetus, which then requires even more fervent dependence on the anti-abortion movements lies about how developed it is in the first trimester.

  56. 56
    PIGL says:

    Dang….during the recent site meltdown I drunkenly followed some instructions that had to do sith disabling some plugin. Ever since, flash won’t work in chrome (works in firefox, but who uses that?)….and nothing seems to help.

    Does anyone have any clue what I might have done, or how to undo it?

  57. 57
    jamick6000 says:

    @askew: The last part (“masters of scrutiny avoidance”) is such a joke/huge cop out. It’s like Politico thinks the only way to scrutinize the President is to personally ask him an unpredictable question.

    Also, the whole idea that Obama is uniquely extreme in manipulating the media is deluded, like you said. Anyone remember when W was taking questions from a GOP operative pretending to be a White House reporter? Or when they gave big contracts to conservative pundits to promote Bush’s agenda?

    But the White House tweeted a picture of Obama shooting a gun, so both sides do it.

  58. 58
    scav says:

    @Redshift: Actually, isn’t skin the largest organ of the body? So much for all that plastic surgery too I guess, especially if some religion somewhere has a position against enhancing all that sin-tempting enhanced physical beauty. No appendicitis ops even to save the life of a woman bearing toxic organs bigger than a breadslice? Who knows where they’ll stop.

  59. 59
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @PIGL: Hire a Jedi?

  60. 60
    Mark S. says:

    Another day, another stupid article about how establishment goopers are going to kick the teabag goopers to the curb. Of course, they’re never going to actually do that, because without the religious nuts, racists, and paranoid shitheads, they’d only get 10% of the country to vote for Randonomics. Also, as Booman says,

    Well, the management at Fox News could make some decisions about what kind of information they want the Republican base to have. Do they want them more angry and paranoid, or less? Is the network about making money or giving power to the right? For a while, those two objectives were not in conflict. They seem to be in conflict today, however. As for politicians, they shouldn’t feed anger and paranoia to the base if they don’t want them to behave like wingnuts. That means that they should stop appearing on some hate radio shows and that they should disavow some of them.

    After watching the Romney campaign, I’m convinced all these Republican operatives are grifters who only care about conning their next mark. They may hate all the losing, but they aren’t going to adapt.

  61. 61
    Katie5 says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: Ugh. Buzzfeed was the go-to content aggregation source for me after I deserted HuffPo over its screw-the-volunteer-contributors merger. Love Buzzfeed for the animal videos. But Buzzfeed has gotten so much more troll loving freakonomics f@!$%k the world over time.

    I like the Gawker empire, especially io9, but it doesn’t have the sheer spread of content. Wonkette’s too much snark, even for me (and I hate their multi-click mobile interface). Anyone have an alternative?

  62. 62
    Mark S. says:


    It’s an appendix, not a choice!

  63. 63
    Anya says:

    @askew: They are delusional. I just hate how full of themselves these assholes are. They’re shameless. They just wanted to see a picture of the President and Tiger Wood to sell ads. What tough questions do they ask at the press briefing? They ask about the newest Wingnut fixation of the day or palace intrigue type questions. Do any of you remember any substantive question any of these self involved douchebags ever asked the president or his people?

  64. 64
    master c says:

    buzzfeed you get me.
    Love that shit.

  65. 65
    GregB says:


    Jeff the Cannon Gannon.

    Who could forget.

  66. 66
    Suzanne says:

    @Anya: Weird. My husband is supposedly related to a brother of Washington.

    They left off the sexiest President. Teddy Roosevelt was a hottie badass. I’d have hit that.

  67. 67
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Suzanne: I’m going with young Harry Truman.

  68. 68
    piratedan says:

    a couple of things….

    tyvm TRMS for Hubris… yeah I knew it all already, but nice to have the timeline laid out and to actually marvel at how well the R’s spin the media (helps that they’re nominally in their pocket ‘natch) to employ that lie by omission. Oh yeah, it’s in the report and those names are mentioned and that’s all you need to know. We’ll be helpfully providing the context for you.

    and a shout out to our usual media stalwarts who continue to act as the press release gang of the Republican Party. Wouldn’t any of you like to ask the question about how a President can simultaneously have a plan be leaked about Immigration reform and then in the same sentence of being accused of not having a plan or showing leadership. It’s like having an empty beer can beside the chair and claiming that you didn’t drink it much less know how it got there and belching while making the statement and having the other person just shrug and move on.

  69. 69
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:


    I think the guys who were attracted to Nancy were more interested in boning her because they would be able to get their dicks as close as possible to Saint Ronnie’s.

    Nancy’s snatch is as close (to Saint Ronnie’s dick) as it gets for these guys!

  70. 70
    Yutsano says:

    @Odie Hugh Manatee: Eww. Just…eww.

  71. 71
    CaseyL says:

    Ah, journalism! What lofty heights are achieved by it!

    Hayes is gorgeous.

    I’ve never seem a photo of him as a young man before. Not only would I totally hit the young Mr. Hayes, he is the very image of a guy I lusted after during most of high school and college. We never connected, and I still think about him from time to time.

    Poor Hayes. All I ever knew about him was that he won the exceedingly messy and disputed Presidential election in 1876, and people called him Rutherfraud for it.

    Reading Wikipedia, it seems his entire Administration was one crisis after another, one fight with the Southern Democrat-dominated Congress after another, over major issues. He was a progressive who let himself be forced over and over into retreating on his principals, and doing the opposite of what he believed to be right.

    Does anyone know more about him?

  72. 72
    burnspbesq says:

    @Comrade Mary:

    That thing’s not cute. That thing is the Joe Pesci of frogs.

  73. 73
    burnspbesq says:

    I rarely see the hard-copy NYT any more, but the hotel in Seattle dropped a copy in front of my door on Sunday morning, and I harvested the magazine and book review for the flight home. Glad I did, or I would have missed Jacob Heilbrunn’s evisceration of Amity Shlaes’ new book about the wingnut intelligensia’s new crush, Calvin Coolidge. Money quote:

    …Shlaes suavely dismisses the notion that Coolidge bears responsibility for the Great Depression and suggests his work was “complete, ready as a kind of blessing for another era.”

    This is flapdoodle.

  74. 74
    Steeplejack says:

    Slow blog night. Been watching a Finnish detective show (Vares), but now the housecat is insisting that I go to bed. Night-night, all.

  75. 75
    Yutsano says:

    @Steeplejack: My kitteh is quite pissed off at me, but in her defence it is my fault. I did abandon her for the long weekend. Oopsie.

  76. 76
    Steeplejack says:


    Hope you make it up to her with heavy cream. That always works.

  77. 77
    Mnemosyne says:

    @David in NY:

    And did Grover Cleveland cheat on Frances, or did he meet her after he became the “Pa” of the old political jibe?

    IIRC, he was the designated legal “Pa” by agreement because all of the woman’s other boyfriends were married and Cleveland was single, so he must have met Frances afterwards.

    That link says that Frances was his friend’s daughter and his former ward. Eeeew.

  78. 78
    Yutsano says:

    @Steeplejack: She’s next to me purring now, so I am temporarily forgiven. I shall indeed make it up to her in the coming week, perhaps with bits of salmon cake since I just got a good deal on canned salmon.

  79. 79
    NotMax says:


    Brother of a long-deceased friend happens to be one of the (if not THE) premier experts on Hayes.

    Would suggest seeking out any or all of his books covering the Hayes era.

    Here’s Ari Hoogenboom’s Wikipedia page.

  80. 80
    NotMax says:


    Oh, also too, couple of Hayes C-SPAN video linkies:



  81. 81
    liberal says:

    Much-hated Glenn Greenwald did have a really funny tweet related to this: “Politico needs a gossip section like the Washington Post needs a neocon section.”

  82. 82

    @Mark S.:
    Bear in mind, each Republican congressman is devoted to his OWN reelection first, and the party second. That is the truly pernicious power of a primary process owned by a small number of lunatics. Each congressman is terrified that if he denies the conservaclowns their next fix they’ll kick him out for a new dealer. Every fix makes them more hooked and gives them a bigger sense of power over their supposed leaders.

  83. 83
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:


    That’s conservatives for ya, just eww. :)

  84. 84
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Steeplejack: That was a great movie. I was floored when I found out that a female played the role of the male photographer. Didn’t learn that until after watching it.

    I don’t hold Mel Gibson’s current craziness against his earlier roles. He once was a pretty good actor. Seemed to go downhill after The Passion of the Christ.

  85. 85

    Stolen from Mike McCurry upstairs:

    When I talk to White House reporters now, they say it’s really tough to do business with people who don’t see the need to be cooperative.

    Buzzfeed’s Katie Notopoulos:

    How bone-able are these presidential h0tties?

    After 8 years of the Bush Agenda, Teh Stoppid is all that’s left. Why does the WH even bother with pressers for anyone not working for McClatchy?

  86. 86
    Cheryl from Maryland says:

    I have often thought Nixon wouldn’t have turned to the dark side if he had kept his hair.

  87. 87
    ellie says:

    @CaseyL: I don’t know much about him, but I have been to his house in Fremont, OH. My parents took my brother and I when we were young.

  88. 88
    Warren says:

    @JGabriel: according to Kenneth Anger, Nancy Davis was known in her starlet days as the best cocksucker in Hollywood.

  89. 89
    Warren says:

    @JGabriel: according to Kenneth Anger, Nancy Davis was known in her starlet days as, let’s say, the most orally talented actress in Hollywood.

  90. 90
    Kathy in St. Louis says:

    Wow. Haven’t seen Buzzfeed in years. I had forgotten what a hard hitting investigative site it was. What could possibly be more cutting edge than crap like this?

Comments are closed.