He’s in love with getting stoned whoa

I’ve been laughing at “Rand Paul: Hipster Hero” thing without realizing just how idiotic it is.

Marvel was the dominant emotion on cable TV last week during the discussions of Paul’s excursion to lefty land. Ruth Marcus of The Washington Post effused in print Sunday about Paul’s performance, limning everything from his opposition to the surveillance state to his jeans to his hair to his accent. I forget exactly which one of those last three lent Paul a certain “stoner quality,” but it was one of them, or maybe all three of them, and in the context it was intended as high praise. Then Mike Allen gave Marcus’s column the in-crowd stamp of approval by featuring it prominently in his daily Playbook email. Allen has lately taken to referring to Marcus as Ruth “the Truth” Marcus, a moniker that surely makes the average Playbooker take her musings all the more seriously.

Maybe we’ll have to ask Dennis Rodman to know for sure, but is North Korean state propaganda this stupid?

125 replies
  1. 1
    HinTN says:

    NK propaganda is far more self aware.

  2. 2
  3. 3

    Rand Paul? Ron’s kid? Self-certified doctor guy? The guy with the toupee? “Lefty Land”? “Stoner Quality”?

    Fuck this, I’m going back to bed for the rest of my life.

  4. 4
    Death Panel Truck says:

    Fond of the Clash, is ya?

  5. 5
    Ruckus says:

    is North Korean state propaganda this stupid?
    Less truthful? Maybe, but this stupid?

  6. 6
    DougJ says:


    Margaret Cho may be the funniest person in the world.

  7. 7
    DougJ says:

    @Death Panel Truck:

    The only band that has ever mattered.

  8. 8
    Death Panel Truck says:

    @DougJ: No argument here.

  9. 9
    Trollhattan says:

    Maybe he only has to present himself to the center of the known hippie universe in order to gain “see, he talks to BOTH sides” cred with the party bosses. Just a year ago he notched an encounter with “the blahs” by going to Howard University.

    Serious as a serious thing is R Aqua Buddha.

  10. 10
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    It’s a perennial theme with columnists to come up with the reason why the youth is turning Republican. Doesn’t matter if it’s actually *so*, it’s just a given that needs explaining. So the fact that the kids are all broke and not spending money REALLY means they’re being fiscally conservative and will therefore vote Republican, that sort of thing. This Rand Paul horseshit is just another one of those.

  11. 11
    geg6 says:

    Ruth Marcus? Seriously? Fucking Ruth Marcus? Does anyone but Mike Allen read her shit?

    Boy, I sure hope Ruth didn’t call Rand a dudebro. He might cry like so many dudebros have been lately. But I’m thinking that “stoner quality” must be the polite way of saying it. Maybe all the crybaby dudebros will find that more acceptable.

  12. 12
    NotMax says:

    Flavor of the month minute.

  13. 13
    IowaOldLady says:

    Why aren’t these people embarrassed?

  14. 14
    Citizen_X says:

    So a “stoner quality” is a good thing now?

    I’m gonna wake and bake the rest of the week before going to work and let y’all know how that turns out. (Hint: no, I’m not.)

  15. 15
    Anoniminous says:

    Rand Paul: just another prick on the Mall.

  16. 16
    MattF says:

    I think what we have here is a measure of the Village desperation towards the prospect of Hillary Clinton running in 2016. In fact, there’s really no Republican who poses even a remotely acceptable alternative to Clinton– so an alternative is being whipped up out of thin air. But, folks, Paul is no hipster and suggesting that some significant fraction of ‘those young ‘uns’ would vote for him is sheer delusion.

  17. 17
    Ash Can says:

    I guess that, to the pundits who are getting all wee-wee’d up over Rand Paul appealing to millenials/hipsters/young voters/lefties, the fact that he may have support from anyone who isn’t white and over 60 is newsworthy. The fact that Rand’s base is actually made up of the usual white male misogynists/racists doesn’t faze them — it’s the fact that these are white male misogynists/racists who also like weed that they find amazing, new, and refreshing.

  18. 18
    Hunter Gathers says:

    If he ends up getting the nom, I’ve going to enjoy enjoy watching Hillary Clinton cut his nuts off every day for three months.

  19. 19

    This is some Applebee’s Salad Bar shit right here. National journalists are convinced they’re ordinary folks, just the ordinary folks who succeeded the most because they’re inherently the best. They do love to tell America what they’re sure we think, and they come off as the most dippy and clueless rich old guys imaginable.

  20. 20
    Cacti says:

    50-something lady gushes about the “youth appeal” of a 50-something dude.

    Nothing better than watching a couple of stuffy Baby Boomers pretend that they’re still hip, and understand youth culture.

  21. 21
    Cassidy says:

    @DougJ: I’m just glad M.I.A. was able to class up there song a bit by sampling it.

  22. 22
    Cacti says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    If he ends up getting the nom, I’ve going to enjoy enjoy watching Hillary Clinton cut his nuts off every day for three months.

    The youngs are all sure to love his “life begins at conception” bills.

  23. 23
    cokane says:

    it’s a weird obsession because young people are the group least likely to decide the 2016 Republican nomination. Even if it was true, it wouldn’t mean shit.

  24. 24
    catclub says:

    Since this thread seems semi-open, I want to point out the NPR reporting of the coming disaster in November ( not quite as rhymed as the thrilla in manila). I remember, for good or ill, NONE of that in 2006. Maybe it was just unknown, maybe it was being totally snowed by Turdblossom on the numbers.
    Unknown is a possibility, because no one was expecting that sweep of both House and Senate.

    I am guessing 538 did not do year 2006. Otherwise I would have heard of their predictions.

  25. 25
    scav says:

    @Cacti: Fifty. It’s the new Sweet Sixteen. And the Boy Bands!

  26. 26
    FlipYrWhig says:

    He’s in love with getting stoned whoa

    I thought it was “He’s in love with getting stonewalled.”

  27. 27

    It takes very very little to peel off some emoprogs.

  28. 28
    Hunter Gathers says:

    @Cacti: Not to mention his stance on the 1964 Civil Rights Act, that hilarious time he compared gay marriage to bestiality (it was a joke, brah), his former staffer The Southern Avenger, and the neo-confederates he inherited from His Daddy. But he goes and lectures black students for not being angry about teh drones, so he’s a shoo-in.

  29. 29
    srv says:



    Is this a magical wingnut or glibertarian code word?

  30. 30
    catclub says:

    @Cacti: Of course, in many things ‘the youth’ means up to about 25, if not younger.

    In voting, it probably means up to about 40. She could still be out of touch, but not quite as badly.

  31. 31
    catclub says:

    @srv: fancypants word for outline or delimit (getting fancy myself)

  32. 32
    dr. bloor says:

    to his hair

    Best testament ever to Ruth Marcus’s casual relationship with reality.

  33. 33
    Mike in NC says:

    Has Chris Matthews said yet that he gets a thrill up his leg when he hears the sound of Rand’s voice?

  34. 34
    dr. bloor says:


    Prerequisite: self-awareness.


  35. 35
    max says:

    is North Korean state propaganda this stupid?

    No. It’s simply more blatant. Here they are trying to sound serious when talking about the awesomeness of Paul.

    @geg6: Ruth Marcus? Seriously? Fucking Ruth Marcus? Does anyone but Mike Allen read her shit?

    I do! Mainly so I can find what bullshit how ostensible Democrats who dig Third Way are putting out this week. I missed the Marcus column on Paul. It’s possible they’re trying to blow Paul up or possibly they’re doing him a favor for going against his old man on the Ukraine. Who knows (and who cares)?

    Paul is arguably the least awful of the R candidates for Prez, so that means he’ll have to take a dive on everything or he won’t win. (He won’t win anyways, but he could make a show of it.)

    [‘What they need is a presidential candidate whom the hyper-wealthy endorse, and who also can satisfy the base with the hating on whomever. A tough mix, and Paul isn’t the person to pull it off, unless in actuality he is so psychopathic he makes Chris Christie look like a dewy-eyed hippy vegetarian. Which would make him the most awful candidate in the field.’]

  36. 36
    Cacti says:


    In voting, it probably means up to about 40. She could still be out of touch, but not quite as badly.

    I think most of the major pollsters cut the “youth” vote off at 29 or 30.

  37. 37
    danielx says:


    Yup, ranks right up there with citing Pink Floyd, Domino’s Pizza (Domino’s, I ask you) and Monica Lewinsky as modern cultural touchstones. I reckon I qualify as an old these days, but at least I don’t pretend to know what people in their twenties regard as hip – although I’m reasonably sure Pink Floyd isn’t on their top ten list. Come to think of it, if that douche waffle Scott Greenberg is a typical example of Rand’s intended audience, I really don’t want to know what they regard as hip, cool, badass….whatever.

    Also, too – Ruth Marcus is 56 years old, for chrissakes, and you have to wonder when was the last time she spoke at length with anyone (besides her kids) who a) is under thirty years old and b) has an income of less than six figures a year. What the fuck would she know about what 20 year olds think?

  38. 38
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @srv: “Limn” means “sketch,” basically. Much favored by humanities grad students.

  39. 39
    Ash Can says:

    @Hunter Gathers: Exactly. Because he embraces the usual GOP policies, he’s alienated blacks, women, Hispanics, gays, and any straight white men who don’t support treating any or all of those groups like trash. That leaves him with a support base of straight white male racists/misogynists/xenophobes — in other words, the usual GOP voting base. But people like Ruth Marcus miss this because all they can see is the blue jeans. Stop the presses, he’s not wearing a tie!

    These people need to get out more.

  40. 40
    bemused says:

    It’s a marvel to me how rightwingers ramp the pr hype so over the top trying to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. They’ve done this as long as I can remember although this does reek of more desperation than usual as someone else pointed out.

  41. 41
    Cacti says:


    Paul is arguably the least awful of the R candidates for Prez,

    There’s about a thimble’s worth of policy difference between Paul the lesser and Santorum.

  42. 42
    muricafukyea says:

    Just a friendly reminder that Comrade Cole thinks Rand Paul has some good ideas and totally drinks his ‘dronezzzz are bad’ horseshit koolaid like any easily led former Republican half wit would.

  43. 43
    Anton Sirius says:

    Mike “Take a Hike” Allen

  44. 44
    kindness says:

    I’ve seen Rand go both ways on Cannabis. I’ve seen him say it should continue to be illegal and I’ve seen him imply it should be decriminalized. I don’t think he has ever said it should be legalized.

    Rand corners an issue by being on all sides of it and the CW beltway applauds.

  45. 45
    Liquid says:

    If Rand Paul gets the nomination I’ll buy a hat and then eat it.

  46. 46
    Seanly says:


    NPR can go pound sand up their perfect enunciating rear ends. You too could be an NPR stenographer of CW on All Things Considered if you can spout the latest Republican talking points like every word is 6 syllables and pause for a breath every 3rd word.

  47. 47
    srv says:

    DougJ, you are just so naive. The Second-Wave Libertarians are going to wash over the voting booths with their millinial masses.

  48. 48
    danielx says:


    What they need is a presidential candidate whom the hyper-wealthy endorse, and who also can satisfy the base with the hating on whomever.

    I thought they had that last time (okay, grudgingly from the base), in the person of the Marquis du Mittens. Which worked out so well for them.

  49. 49
    ulee says:

    Harry Golden had the answer in his 1950s essay on the “Vertical Negro.” Point was that white people have no problem with a standing negro, but sitting with one was out of the question. Rand, in his good world, would leave these issues up to the states.

  50. 50
    Hungry Joe says:

    I know, I know, I know, I know, I KNOW, goddammit! Everything everyone’s saying about how Rand Paul is hapless, lame, idiotic, phony — whatever — is true and beyond. But I’m here to tell you that I was there to see it: In the ’60s and ’70s Reagan was every bit as big of a joke. Not a threat on the national level, no siree. Hollywood B actor — are you kidding me? “Medicare is socialism and will destroy America” — are you kidding me? “Bedtime for Bonzo” — are you kidding me?

    I’m not trying to play Chicken Little here, but I do want to point out that the sky has, in the past, been known to fall. Rand Paul’s nascent candidacy may indeed turn out to be a joke, but in the meantime, none of this is funny. Not to me, anyway: been there, plotzed that.

  51. 51
    ulee says:

    @Liquid: I hope you’re hungry.

  52. 52
    Bob says:

    What? Why no – Our Failed Media Experiment? Or however it’s phrased.

  53. 53
    Anton Sirius says:

    @Hungry Joe: The difference is, Reagan was able to climb up the scaffolding Goldwater had already built within the GOP.

    The libertarians haven’t even had a Goldwater yet, so at best Paul might get to play Goldwater to Hillary’s LBJ in ’16, and twenty years down the pike then we’ll see the dudebro equivalent to Reagan. Maybe.

  54. 54
    WaterGirl says:

    I think we give way more print space to Rand Paul than he deserves. The thing that bothers me about that is that all this talking about Rand Paul promotes Rand Paul as someone we should be listening to.

  55. 55
    Kay (not the front-pager) says:

    The hair?!? You mean the incredibly bad perm-look rug that he wears like a particularly ugly hat? Is that what Ruth Markus thinks makes Rand Paul look like a hipster? Oh dear. I think she needs to go have a drink with Peggy Noonan.

  56. 56
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Kay (not the front-pager): Well, a lot of hipsters do favor the “willfully ugly” look.

  57. 57
    chrome agnomen says:

    if rand would put on a flight suit and a codpiece, he might jump to the leader of the pack.

  58. 58
    ulee says:

    Beatles sure knew what they were doing. Exacted their craft in Hamburg. Then Lennon was murdered by a sick person with a gun. Forty years old. Fucking guns. I’m sick of the murder.

  59. 59
    IowaOldLady says:

    I just got a phone call from a funeral home asking if I’d given any thought to preplanning my funeral. At least they didn’t ask if Mr IOL was planning it.

  60. 60
    chrome agnomen says:


    those fuckers are too young to be baby boomers.

    /baby boomer-not letting them in the tent

  61. 61
    EconWatcher says:

    Sometime, somehow, the “eternal war” element has to be purged from the Republican Party. It is extremely dangerous to have one of the two major parties ready to go to war for no apparent reason, having learned absolutely nothing from their prior debacles.

    I don’t think enough was said in the 2012 cycle about Romney’s foreign policy team, who all thought the Iraq adventure was excellent and couldn’t wait to pull that s#!t again. In a two-party system, there is always a chance that the nutjobs will win the brass ring.

    So if Rand Paul can help in the purge, then he might serve a worthwile purpose, even though he is personally worthless.

  62. 62
    Trollhattan says:


    Suspect li’l Rand has been busy hiding his true beliefs and feelings, and what we do know, while sufficiently frightening on its own, is only the tip of the iceberghead-weasel. Ted Cruz is openly a barking lunatic whose ego assures he’ll always squeak his mind; Rand’s far more conniving.

  63. 63
    Trollhattan says:

    Nice. “Yes, I shall be ripping drunk–thanks for asking.”

  64. 64
    Woodrowfan says:

    I used to read the DPRK press (in English). it’s actually a LOT like Fox News (no surprise.)

  65. 65
    JustRuss says:

    @Hungry Joe: But Reagan could sell like nobody’s business, he had serious charisma. I don’t see that in Paul, no matter how much the media fluffs him.

  66. 66

    I love a good multi-generational con.

  67. 67
    Dave says:

    @Hungry Joe: I think the difference though is that the swing and backlash was coming that would favor reactionaries. I’m fairly sure we are currently on the other side of the pendulum. Which is of course oversimplified and events can take over and I can understand why living through that swing would make someone nervous.

  68. 68
    Roger Moore says:


    the center of the known hippie universe

    Is UC Berkley still the center of the hippie universe? I know it was held up to be that back in the 1960s, but it’s not at all obvious that it’s the center of hippie thought* anymore. I would think the center would be in some kind of Occupy protest these days.

    *To the extent that hippie thought has a center. I thought hippies weren’t well enough organized to have a center of thought.

  69. 69
    Hungry Joe says:

    @Anton Sirius: You’re right, of course … as far as it goes; I just hope it goes far enough. I would not put it past this country to elect Rand Paul president. Ronald Reagan, anybody? George W. Bush? I think we just got acclimated to them, in a perverse sort of way, and lost the sense of how truly preposterous they were. Rand Paul is at their wacko/dumbshit altitude, but not above and beyond it.

    @JustRuss and Dave: You guys are probably right, too. But I have to put that “probably” in there. Because it’s real. And boy, is it scary.

  70. 70
    Liquid says:

    @ulee: The pot should help with that.

  71. 71
    ulee says:

    @Liquid: Just watch for the feds. For some insane reason, they frown on the pot.

  72. 72
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Allen has lately taken to referring to Marcus as Ruth “the Truth” Marcus, a moniker that surely makes the average Playbooker take her musings all the more seriously.

    Jeebus H Christmas. Who are these fucking people? I gave up on Ruth Marcus years ago, but from what I remember and when I see her on TV, she’s for people who find Cokie Roberts and Mark Halperin too edgy and complicated.

    And has anyone pointed out that, assuming all 1,000 of the “kids” who showed up to hear Captain Awesome were Berkeley students, that’s out of a student population of (per Wiki) 35,0000? How many Howard students were in the room when he asked them in a sing-song Mr Rogers voice if they knew that the founders of the NAACP were Repubilcans? I don’t think “showing up” means “voting for”

  73. 73
    AnonPhenom says:

    I’m so confused….I thought the Hipster Elites were the enemy of conservatives. Who took my scorecard? How’m I suppose’ta tell the playas without a scorecard?

  74. 74
    MomSense says:

    I’m just sick of it. Most of what passes for journalism now is just the musings of assholes. Most of them are spectacularly ill informed. They just repeat the gossip and conventional wisdom of their closed little loop, and they lack the ability to prioritize the importance of the stories that “win the day”.

    Rand Paul is a joke. He should be mocked or ignored.

  75. 75
    cokane says:

    btw im just calling it now for posterity, Santorum will be the 2016 nominee

  76. 76
    ulee says:

    @MomSense: The Republican party should be mocked and ignored. But they are likely to take the Senate this year. And then they will impeach Obama for no reason at all. Remember that McCain is supposed to be a reasonable voice in the
    Senate and he voted to impeach Clinton.

  77. 77
    NotMax says:

    I’ll grant Rand Paul one thing – not just anyone is willing to tell his barber “Give me the Bomba the Jungle Boy.”

  78. 78
    Feebog says:

    Well, the Republicna have to nominate someone, right? Corpse Christie is now radioactive slag, and the money guys have already figured out that Marco Rubio is an empty suit. What it comes down to is the least spoiled fruit left in the barrel. So yeah, Paul may get the nomination. Winning the general is another matter.

  79. 79
    Hungry Joe says:

    @cokane: The fact that what you just wrote isn’t delusional strikes me as very sad, indeed. Santorum isn’t my call,* but I wouldn’t bet heavily against him.

    * yet

  80. 80
    Hungry Joe says:

    @NotMax: I read that four times and laughed every time. No way it’ll work a fifth time. Will it? Let’s see …

    Damn you!

  81. 81
    muddy says:

    @Kay (not the front-pager): Looking at the way he wears his hair makes me think his mom overpraised his beauty whilst patting his blond curls when he was a kid. And probably well into adulthood.

  82. 82
    Chris T. says:

    @Roger Moore: No. It never really was (because, as you note, there’s not much of a center in the first place) but it lost much of what remained in the 1990s, and even by the end of 1989 a lot of it was well-eroded.

  83. 83
    MomSense says:


    There is no reasonable voice in the Republican Party–not one. They seem to hate the foundational principles of our nation. They talk about Christianity but they reject all of Jesus’ teachings. What we are seeing is a bunch of sociopaths whose religion is Reagan’s letthemeatcakeonomics and who justify it with a perverted form of Christianity.

    I don’t know WTF is in their version of the bible or US constitution. The “miracle” of the loaves and the fishes is that people followed Jesus’ example and shared with each other. Who would Jesus let go hungry?

  84. 84
    Hungry Joe says:

    @MomSense: Since you asked … Paul Ryan.

  85. 85
    ulee says:

    @MomSense: I agree. Paul Ryan says that subsidised school lunches leave children with a full stomach and an empty soul. You really have to be a fucked up individual to mess with kid’s nutrition in the name of Jesus.

  86. 86
    ulee says:

    @Hungry Joe: You beat me to it.

  87. 87
    MomSense says:

    @Hungry Joe:

    HA! He probably makes me the most crazy since he has personal experience with suffering a family tragedy and benefiting from Social Security survivor’s benefits. The decency and compassion of the American people as expressed by our government helped support him so he could go to college.

  88. 88
    Roger Moore says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    I don’t think “showing up” means “voting for”

    A very important point. This wasn’t a Rand Paul election rally; it was Rand Paul trying to convince skeptical people that he’s actually OK. They may have been willing to listen to him, but that doesn’t mean they accepted what he had to say. The only thing that makes this interesting is that Paul is using a strategy beyond rallying the base.

  89. 89
    srv says:

    @Roger Moore: Oakland was an OWS center, and they’re smashing google buses.

    But the techies will probably roll over them eventually.

  90. 90
    Roger Moore says:


    Most of what passes for journalism now is just the musings of assholes.

    No. Most of what passed for opinion journalism is the musings of assholes, but that’s generally been the case. There is still a lot of good factual journalism out there. The thing that’s different now is that we’ve lost a lot of the diversity of the assholes who are given an official platform.

  91. 91
    Ruckus says:

    How the hell would rughead know what a soul is? He has no frame of reference in himself or his family.

  92. 92
    srv says:

    Santorum wins as the most rational, non-hated guy in the primaries.

  93. 93
    MomSense says:


    Kids with hungry bellies can’t focus on their schoolwork and that is the least of the problems. There are physical, emotional, and cognitive consequences to living with food insecurity and malnutrition. It is a disgusting ideology that Paul Ryan is advocating. I have come to realize that cruelty towards other human beings is a sign of seriousness to the villagers so I don’t expect him to be called on his BS any time soon.

  94. 94
    MomSense says:

    @Roger Moore:

    There is still a lot of good factual journalism out there.

    You are probably right but the problem is that you have to have a lot of time and inclination to find it.

  95. 95
    ulee says:

    @Ruckus: He’s trying, just like the rest of us, but he is getting it wrong. And a lot of people are cheering him , just as long as he isn’t Obama.

  96. 96
    Trollhattan says:

    @Roger Moore: @srv:

    Berkeley-Oakland are effectively contiguous and yeah, if I were to aim a visitor to a “California urban hippie haven” I’d point them thataway. Notable more isolated outposts could include, say, Santa Cruz and Arcata.

    That John Yoo professors on at UC Berkeley blows my mind, man. At least he could have teamed up with Ole Perfessor at Tennessee.

  97. 97
    RaflW says:

    Wow, Ruth Marcus, the 55 year old Harvard Law grad – she knows hipster when she sees it!

    For the love of Pete, we need a new media. And most probably not Vox, thank you very little.

  98. 98
    Roger Moore says:


    But they are likely to take the Senate this year. And then they will impeach Obama for no reason at all.

    And they still won’t get him out of office, because they need 2/3 of the Senate to convict and they aren’t going to be within a country mile of getting it.

  99. 99

    Dude, where’s my bro?

  100. 100
    gorram says:

    @kindness: That’s the centrist perspective on it from what I’ve seen actually – basically all of the benefits of decriminalization for wealthy and White people, but let’s maintain enough criminalization that people of color (especially when poor) continue to be dumped into prisons. It can mobilize a certain White-straight-male voter demographic that can and often does treat drug policy as a divining rod without alienating, for example, the prison industrial complex of election donors.

    It’s about triangulating a way to remain electable without pissing off the rich and powerful backers.

  101. 101
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @MomSense: also, Beltway/Pundit CW seeps in to regular media coverage, the top-of-the-hour, Your Action 7 News that people passively absorb while in the car or waiting for the local weather forecast. Or, as the Simpsons had it with their automated DJ twenty-odd years ago “Those clowns in Washington…. What a bunch of clowns” (“How does it keep up with current events like that?!”)

    Today in the car I flipped though NPR’s “On Point”, not a show I listen to so I don’t know who the host was, but he was interviewing someone about Obamacare, the deadline, the penalty, and the host said “So you don’t have to get Obamacare [to avoid the penalty], just some kind of coverage?”

  102. 102
    ulee says:

    Clarence Darrow would educate these fools, but they don’t want to be educated. They want to remain superstitious morons.

  103. 103
    gorram says:

    @srv: The second guy in that video (who looks younger, but still older than the average millennial) said, “We no longer have the threat of communism as an ever present concern, we’re able to tackle attacks on liberty from many different directions now.”

    Translation: with the threat of communist revolution gone, we don’t need the welfare state to maintain order right? The only reason we were okay with that was because it allowed us to remain stable while the USSR crumbled. It wasn’t doing anything right?

  104. 104
    MomSense says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    “So you don’t have to get Obamacare [to avoid the penalty], just some kind of coverage?

    Wow, really sad that NPR has sunk so low.

    That is the problem with FOX as well. The memes they push become discussion on the other networks so they are constantly shaping the way “news” is framed.

  105. 105
    Roger Moore says:

    I suspect that a big part of the difference in our perspectives is that I get most of my news from written rather than spoken media. In a newspaper or web site, it’s fairly easy to recognize and avoid opinion journalism in a way that just isn’t possible with radio or TV news. That, and written media doesn’t have the need to fill up air time that seems to create the demand for endless bloviating opinion journalists.

  106. 106
    Chris T. says:

    @Trollhattan: Berkeley as a whole, and parts of Oakland, yes; but UCB itself, not so much these days. The UC system (like all of California’s colleges) is suffering terribly from the damage inflicted starting in, well, 1981 (“Reagan Revolution”) might make a good marker, but I think the problem really began with the passage of Prop 13 (1978).

    There has been some improvement since the D’s took over the CA legislature, but the fundamental problem remains: due to Prop 13, property that does not change hands is terribly under-taxed, eroding the tax base for funding universal education, including the UC system. Prop 13 needs to go, replaced by some sort of tax-relief-for-poor-seniors (some do exist after all) that’s done on a case-by-case basis rather than allowing businesses that live forever to keep paying 1978 taxes on all their real estate holdings.

  107. 107
    RaflW says:


    they are likely to take the Senate this year. And then they will impeach Obama for no reason at all.

    They may take the Senate. There’s plenty of Village narrative pushing for this electoral outcome.

    But I think if they vote to impeach Obama, the Republican party will be effectively destroyed at the national level for a generation. Yes Lindsey Quiverwaddle Graham will still win as long as he manages to keep the boys stuffed in the closet, but outside of the South, impeachment will be very toxic.

  108. 108
    MomSense says:

    @Roger Moore:

    The line between opinion journalism and reporting is increasingly blurred. I suspect that many of us here at B-J are doing a decent job of keeping ourselves informed. Like you, I get most of my news from written sources and I also read a number of foreign newspapers to get different perspectives and to get international coverage. This is not the case for most people.

  109. 109
    Liquid says:

    @gorram:That reminds of Bernie Sanders saying he should have been screaming about single payer during the Clinton years.

  110. 110
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Allen has lately taken to referring to Marcus as Ruth “the Truth” Marcus,

    Yup, the tumbrel manifest for these two is in indelible ink.

  111. 111
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @RaflW: It’s a short-term version of abortion. They (Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, and I assume they’ve explained it to Boner in that two or three hour window between still-drunk-hungover and starting to drink again) want to talk about the lawless president in their fundraising letters, but only the nutters actually want to draft articles of impeachment. I’d say there’s a small chance that the establishment types will get dragged into it by the real whackos. I doubt it. As to the Senate, hell, legend has it that Trent Lott said to Henry Hyde in ’97 “You’re not gonna dump this shit on my desk”. Also, too, as Strom Thurmond mumbled to a White House aide during the actual trial, they’d never get two t’urds.

  112. 112
    Trollhattan says:

    @Chris T.:

    Agreed, the parallels between UCB of the ’60 and ’70s versus today are thin, indeed. Takes a GPA of eleventy-five and something like $25k/year to even break into the joint.

  113. 113
    RaflW says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist and @MomSense:

    “So you don’t have to get Obamacare [to avoid the penalty], just some kind of coverage?”

    Look, I’m frustrated with the slide of NPR towards middling mush. But I don’t think the host was stupid (I was listening in the car), I think he was playing the role of ‘average listener’ in his questioning. It’s a technique. Maybe he did it poorly, or maybe below the level we expect from an NPR audience.

    But maybe you and I are not, in fact, their average listener. We might be closer to their average donor, but that’s a very small, elite subset of smarty pants (I’m extrapolating here…)

  114. 114
    RaflW says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Yeah, my implied stance was that the taking of the Senate has decent odds, the impeachment is much harder to call. Quite a few GOP pols know how toxic that would be to the “brand.”

  115. 115
    Svensker says:


    “Limn” means “sketch,” basically. Much favored by humanities grad students.

    Also Hollywood Reporter headline writers

  116. 116
    Josie says:

    @cokane: I agree. It is his turn, according to Republican tradition. If he can discipline himself to stay with a safe message and use the Republican populism that he espoused the last go round, he could do it. I think the big boys in the party know it and are scared to death he might win the primaries. That is why they are so busy fluffing Jeb, Rand, Chris, and/or anyone else they can think of. The base, however, will probably not be deceived again and will want to go with the “true conservative.”

  117. 117
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @RaflW: We might be closer to their average donor
    Heh. I do still donate, as exasperating as they can be.

    I’m glad you heard the same thing I did, and I’m willing to concede that it was his clumsy way of saying “you don’t have to go through THE DREAD WEBSITE OF DOOOOOOM!” But it was at best lazy to the point of incompetence.

  118. 118
    snoey says:

    Walter “the Truth” Berry, Paul “the Truth” Pierce, Ruth “the Truth” Marcus

    One of these is not like the others.

  119. 119
    Calouste says:


    “The Truth” in various languages was a popular moniker for Communist Party newspapers. Pravda being the leading example. Using that name gives a good indication of what not to expect.

  120. 120
    cokane says:

    @Josie: I think Santorum has probably learned some tricks too, to appear as the likeable populist conservative. He’ll probably position himself as anti-Romney a la, “I would never make the 47 percent remark”. He’s right square in the current Repub mainstream on every single issue — taxes, guns, abortion, gays, foreign policy, social welfare.

    Going back to 76-80 all but one Repub primary confirms this trend of the runner up getting his shot. 76 runner up was Reagan. Then you had Republican incumbent prez’s, so not counting those. 2000 was an exception, but only in that Buchanan was 96’s runner up and didn’t run and wasn’t ever much of a serious candidate. Dole won 96 by a huge margin, there effectively was no opposition. McCain was Bush II’s runner up, and Romney was McCain’s. not a huge data pool I know, but there it is.

  121. 121
    Lyrebird says:

    @Anoniminous: Nicely played!

    And thanks Doug J for reading what I couldn’t stand to!

  122. 122
    Roger Moore says:

    @Chris T.:

    Prop 13 needs to go, replaced by some sort of tax-relief-for-poor-seniors (some do exist after all) that’s done on a case-by-case basis rather than allowing businesses that live forever to keep paying 1978 taxes on all their real estate holdings.

    How about allowing the property tax limitation only on the California residence you use to file your taxes? That would give ordinary people who are owner/occupiers of a single home the same treatment they get today while eliminating a whole host of abuses. I’d even be willing to allow farm properties to get the same treatment, so actual family farmers who live on their farms would get favorable treatment relative to big factory farms. I can also see allowing some kind of break that would allow retired people to keep favorable tax status when they move.

  123. 123
    hitchhiker says:


    That’s it right there. Perfectly said.

  124. 124
    Chris T. says:

    @Roger Moore: Might work. Classic example of bad side effect occurred with a friend of mine. His parents died, he inherited the house, he now lives there because the taxes are on about $40-50k instead of the actual $400+k value, so even though it’s a terrible commute and ridiculous urban planning, it’s worth living in that house.

  125. 125
    mclaren says:

    Obligatory response.

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