Before they blow up the world

When I say that professional centrists frighten me much more than wingers, I am being completely serious. Let’s look at this passage by Jim VandeHei that Anne Laurie highlighted this morning:

Exploit the fear factor. The candidate should be from the military or immediately announce someone with modern-warfare expertise or experience as running mate. People are scared. Terrorism is today’s World War and Americans want a theory for dealing with it. President Obama has established an intriguing precedent of using drone technology and intelligence to assassinate terrorists before they strike. A third-party candidate could build on death-by-drones by outlining the type of modern weapons, troops and war powers needed to keep America safe. And make plain when he or she will use said power. Do it with very muscular language—there is no market for nuance in the terror debate…

And let’s remember this David Broder classic:

Here is where Obama is likely to prevail. With strong Republican support in Congress for challenging Iran’s ambition to become a nuclear power, he can spend much of 2011 and 2012 orchestrating a showdown with the mullahs. This will help him politically because the opposition party will be urging him on. And as tensions rise and we accelerate preparations for war, the economy will improve.

Say what you want about the tenets of wingnuts, at least they don’t suggest starting wars for purely political reasons. It’s one thing to be an honest, earnest bedwetter who thinks we need to bomb the world to be safe, it’s quite another to suggest that presidents, or mythical third-party unicorns, start exploiting fear and killing people for purely political reasons.






109 replies
  1. 1
    Chris says:

    When I say that professional centrists frighten me much more than wingers, I am being completely serious.

    I don’t know if they frighten me more. I’d say they certainly frighten me as much, and it’s because by and large they’re the same people pushing all the same beliefs and memes. The notion that they’re somehow more “moderate” than the Trump and Cruz voters is completely unearned and false, as people like Kasich happily prove every time they open their mouths. (“Well, we don’t want the District to vote because they’d all be Democrats!”)

  2. 2
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    President Obama has done such a good job in the last eight years, he’s made it safe for all of the Village Idiots to start talking crazy shit all over again.

  3. 3
    Cermet says:

    Like a certain bush wack-job under his boss, bloody-hands cheney did against Iraq?

  4. 4
    MattF says:

    Speaking of FOX news, their ex-‘national security’ expert is scheduled to change his plea.

  5. 5
    Jeffro says:

    @Chris: Seconded on every point here.

    It’s amazing how utterly blasé these folks are with other people’s kids in wars, with other families’ wealth during bubbles and the aftermath, with other people’s voting rights when they happen to be Democrats and/or poor. And I guess you could extend that to how blasé they are about exploiting their fellow citizens’ fears in order to bring about their Third-Way Dystopian nonsense. How would THEY like it?

  6. 6

    @Chris: They frighten me more, because totebaggers and swing voters pay attention to them and give them the benefit of the doubt they wouldn’t give a Limbaugh or a Hewitt.

  7. 7
    FlipYrWhig says:

    How many pundits are there whose shtick is I AM WHITE MONEYED AND FRIGHTENED SOMEONE HOLD ME AND HURT THEM? A hundred?

  8. 8
  9. 9
    NickM says:

    VandeHei writes: “People are scared. Terrorism is today’s World War and Americans want a theory for dealing with it.”

    I think this is yet another class thing. Most people I know are kind of scared a lot of the time, but scared that the back pains might be cancer. Or that they’re going to need back surgery. Or that their kids’ weird habits might be more than just weird habits. Or that they haven’t been productive enough at work lately. Or that their in-laws are going to need a loan or have to move in with them. Terrorism is there, I guess, but isn’t mentioned as much. The only people I know who express a lot of concern about it are old, retired people who are comfortable and watch a lot of Fox News.

    Lord VandeHei doesn’t have to worry about the other real-life concerns, and boring poor people do have to worry about them. Health care and retirement policy are not as much fun as military Hardware, muscular policy, intriguing drone strikes and blowing up shit. So he’s “scared” of terrorism.

  10. 10
    aimai says:

    I think that people underestimate how much of an imperial, or royal at any rate, court all of Washington is, especially for the permanent residents. Every four years, potentially, all the relationships shift as a new King comes in with a new court and new connections matter, or old ones are revived. The thing they hated about Clinton was he came from outside and brought other outsiders, and they really hated that about Obama because: black and young. He had black and young supporters.He had an inner circle and they knew they weren’t going to be part of it.

    This is especially a problem for professional hacks because they thrive on crumbs of gossip dropped from the head table, and they need to always be able to show that they have connections, that they know things first, that their phone calls get answered.

    In an election cycle like this it gets very hard. Obviously they aren’t going to have any good history or connections with Bernie, and Hillary and Bill have their inner circle and their administrative staff interests probably all sewn up. While Trump is a huge embarrassment and not to be relied upon unless they suck up to him even more than Christie did. So the logical thing to do is to begin fantasizing out loud about the creation of a third candidate or third party candidate where the talking heads can get in on the ground floor (to mix my metaphors) and where their “early money is like yeast” approach to the nomination can actually win them some points down the road.

    I have a cousin who was fairly well connected during the Clinton years.I bet he is hoping and dreaming that when she gets in he goes back to having access so he can jump start his journalistic career. The Obama people froze out the Clinton people pretty effectively (not that I’m complaining, they did the right thing). But a lot of people just live and die over these changeovers in power.

  11. 11
    Germy says:

    The Brand New Congress movement:

    Some of the technology activists who were key to the Dean, Obama and Sanders campaign have a new, audacious program: they’re going to run 535 bipartisan candidates for office in the 2016 election, backed by a single website for fundraising, grassroots organizing and messages, based on Bernie Sanders’ political platform.

    A recurring criticism of Sanders’ platform is that without a Congress and state-level governments to support him, President Sanders would just be one voice (albeit a powerful one). This hasn’t escaped the attention of activists who worked on the campaign. With Brand New Congress, progressives will have the chance to work together, across the country, in solidarity, to replace the incumbents who owe their jobs to the rich and powerful with new entrants who owe their jobs to the people and have sworn to fight for “a unified economic, social justice, and climate change platform.”

    http://boingboing.net/2016/04/.....rogre.html

    One of the reader comments:
    “Sounds like a rather ingenious plan to suck votes away from from Democrats and keep the GOP in power in Congress.”

  12. 12
    Chris says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    How many swing voters are there actually that are swayed by what the Villagers say, especially nowadays with traditional media hemorrhaging audience members? At this point their primary audience is each other.

  13. 13
    Ex Libris says:

    @Jeffro:
    I think that’s just it – it’s related to that lack-of-empathy gene all wingers seem to have. Language like “build on death-by-drones by outlining the type of modern weapons, troops and war powers needed to keep America safe. And make plain when he or she will use said power” is just playing a video game for your own amusement using real people and places and things that won’t bother you when they get blown up.

  14. 14
    Geeno says:

    @Germy: This is what I wanted to see to come of the Bernista movement! This needs to be a democratic type initiative – recruit and support YOUR candidates in the dem primaries, etc. This – if that’s what it is – makes me hopeful that things can be pushed leftward. It’s not going to happen in one election cycle, though. I hope they’re setting up for the long game.

  15. 15

    @aimai: Its pretty apparent that the Beltway media behaves like they were courtiers at the modern day Versailles. BTW I have been to Lincoln ME,its up north from Bangor ME and its not even on the coast. Its not representative of ME, forget the entire country. Van De Hai is an idiot. Apparently, the other Villagers think he is cute. God alone knows, why.

  16. 16
    MattF says:

    @aimai: K Street is very much the Avenue of Courtiers. A few years ago, I read a couple of volumes of Saint-Simon. The tale of how the King dealt with his military losses but was not deterred from meddling with Spanish politics was instructive.

  17. 17
    Germy says:

    @Geeno: What confused me was their choice of the word “bipartisan”

  18. 18
    Ayn Randy says:

    @NickM: You hit the nail on the head here. I’m more worried about long-term job security. I don’t understand why the Villagers are always so eager to pound the drums of war. It’s not like Jim VandeHei or any other Washington hack is going to embed himself and cover the war up close. It just doesn’t make sense.

  19. 19
    Scott S. says:

    It’s not so much fear of terrorism as it is fear of not having a war-boner all the time.

  20. 20

    I get the disdain for the two existing parties, but when I look at Maine, the third party enthusiasts scare me. Multiple parties can work in a parliamentary system where plurality winners have to form alliances in order to form a government, but in our system, I fear you’d just wind up with minority rule. (cf. George W. Bush)

  21. 21

    @Chris: Anecdata, I have friend who is greatly influenced by her surroundings and what she sees on TV, especially “neutral” CNN. When she lived in ME she was an independent, a raging liberal when she lived in a college town and now a right wing loon who lives in a blood red state. Just thinking about her ideological somersaults gives me a whiplash.

  22. 22
    Geeno says:

    @Germy: Yeah – if they’re trying to set up a left wing “third way” – it’s going to fail, and get some republicans elected that shouldn’t be.

  23. 23
    p.a. says:

    Today’s TPM has 2 important articles on vote suppression; N.C. and Kan. Despite Repub potential self-immolation, this election is no gimmee. Assume nothing!

  24. 24
    MattF says:

    And the whole business of starting wars for political reasons is a key point in the Straussian mindset; see e.g., Bill Kristol. You’ve got to keep the proles busy and out of the way– otherwise they’ll notice, eventually, who’s in charge.

  25. 25
    sherparick says:

    @aimai: I agree completely that over the last 35 years the residents of the media Village in D.C. and New York have become courtiers in an imperial court, an imperial court run like a high school.

  26. 26
    JMG says:

    With war, pundits can see themselves as influential insiders of the capital of the world’s mightiest empire, observing and commenting on great deeds that are the stuff of history.
    Without war, pundits are more likely to realize they are a declining species of hangers-on despised by those they attempt to hang on to. Obama’s cool contempt for Beltway insiderdom is one of the best traits he brought to the Presidency. A President Clinton would show even more overt contempt. A President Trump more overt still.
    So the pundits want war led by a white man who treats them like they matter. They want G.W. Bush back.

  27. 27

    @MattF: I am reading Guns of August, and I find a remarkable similarity between the neocons and the military thinkers of Imperial Germany.

  28. 28
    Chris says:

    @Ex Libris:

    To be fair, this is, to a large extent, how the entire American population relates to war. We used to be at least sort of connected to the reality of war by the number of people who served in the military (the draft) and the sacrifices we used to have to make for the war effort, even if that was already much more toned-down compared to what most other countries would consider a military experience. (The full military experience – meaning not only that the soldiers get sent off to fight, but that large parts of your country get to turn into a war zone for years and years and you the regular person have to try to somehow survive in the middle of all the madness – that, we haven’t had in a hundred and fifty years, and it really shows when discussing things like the Iraq War).

    But since the late seventies, we don’t even have that anymore – not with the military reduced to the All Volunteer Force (where not only do fewer people serve, but those who don’t can figure “oh, well, it’s what they wanted”) and not with wars now being coupled with tax cuts. So yeah, I think a lot of people really do see war as Call Of Duty, far beyond Official Washington.

  29. 29
    Jeffro says:

    @Ayn Randy:

    I don’t understand why the Villagers are always so eager to pound the drums of war.

    I seriously think it’s a mental ‘itch’ of theirs that needs scratching at least once a decade. They feel like they need a good war to get behind, otherwise, how will they know they’re good Americans?

  30. 30
    Chris says:

    @aimai:

    Yes to all of this. It’s Versailles for the 21st century.

  31. 31
    MattF says:

    @Jeffro: It’s also self-interest. “I started the XXX War” is a killer line on a resume.

  32. 32
    Hoodie says:

    The distinctive thing about such professional centrists as a tribe is their foundational premise that what they’re proposing is right because they are very serious people who should be taken very seriously. This is reinforced because they often hold privileged positions in society and can pose as meritorious simply because of their status, irrespective of actual merit. In truth, many of their obsessions (e.g., deficits, entitlements) are often as much or more batshit crazy than the demons conjured up by wingers, and their fuckups (e.g., wars of choice) are massive social engineering catastrophes that are far worse than any of the horrors they typically attribute to liberals. Whatever they decide to do is “the right thing” simply because the right people came up with it.

  33. 33
    Jeffro says:

    @sherparick:

    over the last 35 years the residents of the media Village in D.C. and New York have become courtiers in an imperial court, an imperial court run like a high school.

    Not being a history snob here, but you can go much further back than 35 years and find examples of the same kind of behavior (even during times like the Great Depression and WWII) from the media (in DC, NYC, and across the country) and the permanent class in DC.

    I agree with JMG @ 26 that it’s been a nice side benefit of the Obama presidency, that he has largely ignored these clowns, played them as best anyone could, and stayed focused on turning things around on all fronts after W & Co wrecked things so incredibly well.

  34. 34
    RaflW says:

    @aimai:

    This is especially a problem for professional hacks because they thrive on crumbs of gossip dropped from the head table, and they need to always be able to show that they have connections, that they know things first, that their phone calls get answered.

    The press has excoriated Obama repeatedly for his daring to just cut them out of the loop to communicate directly with voters. How dare Obama use social media, youTube, etc! I’m pretty sure that terrorizes the Villagers more than some potential shoe bomber.

  35. 35
    rikyrah says:

    Exploit the fear factor. The candidate should be from the military or immediately announce someone with modern-warfare expertise or experience as running mate. People are scared. Terrorism is today’s World War and Americans want a theory for dealing with it. President Obama has established an intriguing precedent of using drone technology and intelligence to assassinate terrorists before they strike. A third-party candidate could build on death-by-drones by outlining the type of modern weapons, troops and war powers needed to keep America safe. And make plain when he or she will use said power. Do it with very muscular language—there is no market for nuance in the terror debate…

    Like yourself, I read that section SEVERAL TIMES – with a sense of horror and disgust.
    That a muthaphucka would actually put this in print, and put his name to it, and think that it’s ok.

    PHUCK.OUTTA.HERE.

  36. 36
    aimai says:

    @Germy: Yes, why would it be bipartisan? Or even non partisan? There is no “independent/non partisan” party to affiliate with at the National level so if they did get into congress they would be caucusing with themselves or with the dems. Or splitting the dem vote. This is the part where I get really, really, pissed off at Bernie.

  37. 37
    Chris says:

    @sherparick:

    I agree completely that over the last 35 years the residents of the media Village in D.C. and New York have become courtiers in an imperial court, an imperial court run like a high school.

    Still one of the best movies that’s (unintentionally) about Official Washington is the French film “Ridicule.” Plot: a minor noble from way out in the sticks comes to Versailles to try to get some money from the crown to set up a public health project, has to learn to navigate the royal court, and learns that it runs on basic middle school rules.

  38. 38
    aimai says:

    @RaflW: It sounds like Hillary learned this lesson very well from Obama. She has routinely done very small, itimate, targeted availabilities this time around. Its annoying for generic fans but she is clearly going for deeper interactions with local leadership and locally significant people, like older women, rather than wasting time being interviewed by hostile major network people.

  39. 39
  40. 40
    RaflW says:

    Also, note this in VanDeHei’s steaming pile

    The ideal candidate would write a very specific agenda in normal, conversational language, not whatever nonsensical language today’s political class was taught to speak.

    As if Politico hasn’t been right in the damn middle of creating and propagating that nonsensical language. Fuck him for trying to now pretend that the political class has pulled a fast one on all us normal people. As one of the leading organs of the political-industrial state, Politico is deeply culpable. VaDeHei is permanently stained for it.

  41. 41
    aimai says:

    @MattF: I loved reading St. Simon! I lost my particular copy, which I got from my grandfather’s shelves after he died, on a train. I mourn it to this day. My grandfather, who was a journalist in DC for most of his life, is not buried in DC because he hated it so much.

  42. 42
    RaflW says:

    @aimai: It isn’t (always) even that major network people are hostile. They ask stupid questions about shit that doesn’t matter to voters! Obama cut them out because they suck, as much as because they have agendas.

  43. 43
    negative 1 says:

    The issue is that ‘centrist’ is a lazy tag to begin with. Most ‘centrists’ are republicans who are too socially liberal to fit into the party (racist) orthodoxy. They’re every bit of the economic conservatives that their brethren are. They talk about ‘responsible spending’ as a code to slash taxes the same as their party-mates. If there’s a difference it’s just that they want to slash taxes because they’re greedy; not because they are Atwater ‘small government’ dogwhistlers.

    Honestly, I defy anyone to try and define ‘centrist’ as it is played in the popular political media without just having fit as ‘non-racist republican’. An honest definition of centrist would end up having it play to Barack Obama, who solved problems that affect a plurality of Americans (e.g. lack of healthcare) in a way that would be palatable to the only opposition (medical industry; very rich people concerned about taxes) by using their plan (ACA, aka RomneyCare). Basically those tired old ideas of compromise to give something to everyone.

  44. 44
    Redshift says:

    @aimai:

    I think that people underestimate how much of an imperial, or royal at any rate, court all of Washington is, especially for the permanent residents.

    Er, that is in no way “all of Washington.” I get that you’re talking about the Village and the class of appointed types and suckups, but the vast, vast majority of permanent residents of Washington are ordinary people with no connection to the “royal court” other than serving as punching bags for it if they’re federal employees.

    I grew up around here, and this is one of those bugaboos that gets tossed around like “everyone here is transient, no one actually lives here.” (No, asshole, that just means you are and you’ve never gotten to know anyone except “your kind”; you think the checkout clerk at the grocery store or the guy tending bar change with different administrations?)

    The rest of the rant is righteous, just a nit.

  45. 45

    @RaflW: Word! If we replace all the Beltway journalists with high school newspaper teams, I bet they would ask more relevant questions. PBS is not better than the shouty cable channels. Just watch Washington Week. They spend most of the time smirking and giving each other high fives. Gwen Ifill and Amy Walters were giggling and smirking away on the News Hour just yesterday. Its a bloody game to them.

  46. 46
    Aaron says:

    @Doug!:

    I see what you did there in the title. Very timely (and relatively little-known) Prince lyrical reference from the 1981 “Controversy” album.

    Bonus Points!

  47. 47
    RaflW says:

    @Ayn Randy:

    I don’t understand why the Villagers are always so eager to pound the drums of war.

    Muscular foreign policy gives them a woody.

    Also, too, they love projecting power and being world cop. And it costs them nothing personally, and earns their media masters clicks and eyes. Then when the latest war all goes south, they can write 100s of columns clucking their tongues at the feckless politicians who had been so muscular and anodyne, but fell to earth and are now despised.
    Rinse. Repeat.

  48. 48
    japa21 says:

    Isn’t it time to put up the primary results thread?

  49. 49
    qwerty42 says:

    ” … People are scared. …”
    People are not f*ing scared. These nitwits are “scared” (except not really, just the rubes they imagine are doting on their every word).

  50. 50
    aimai says:

    @Redshift: I’m just sick of the phrase “the villagers.” Of course the actual residents of Washington are another story. I think that’s pretty obvious from my argument. In fact these people that I’m discussing are probably, largely, not living in Washington DC at all–that is quite expensive. However housing does turn over madly every time the old administration leaves and there is an entire permanent corps of workers and businesses that live off of that turn over.

  51. 51
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @negative 1: I think “centrists” as defined by elite punditry have a few features:

    1. “Fiscal responsibility.”
    2. Un-showy faith.
    3. “Toughness,” on both crime and war/foreign policy.
    4. “National greatness.”
    5. “Authenticity.”

    This is why their first and most lasting crush was on John McCain.

  52. 52
    Redshift says:

    @aimai: This is the same thing that really turned me off about the Democracy Spring protests. They listed a whole bunch of awful things Republicans had done or tried to do (without saying it was Republicans), and then declared that the way to fix them was to “get big money out of politics” and protested against that.

    The follow-on actions proposing to work on voting rights and stuff at the state and local level seem better, but going after a thing while avoiding going after the people responsible for it just reeks of both-sides-do-it and failure.

  53. 53
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @RaflW: Also, they want America to be the best at everything, and to show that they’re not the kinds of worrywarts who never got over “Vietnam Syndrome.” In no small part because they think Real America fetishizes The Troops and the flag, and they want to prove that they’re in touch with Real America rather than being aloof from it. They eat from the Applebee’s salad bar!

  54. 54
    Chris says:

    @RaflW:

    It isn’t (always) even that major network people are hostile. They ask stupid questions about shit that doesn’t matter to voters! Obama cut them out because they suck, as much as because they have agendas.

    I think it’s even more basic than that: Obama cut them out because there was simply no reason to keep them around. As much as they “suck,” I suspect he would’ve made more of an effort to connect with them back in the old days, but he correctly recognized that in the age of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, they’re irrelevant, unnecessary, and easily bypassed. So why would he subject himself to any more of their bullshit than he absolutely had to?

    And they still don’t get it, which is why you’ll occasionally get them saying that if only Obama invited more pundits to the White House and went to the right parties and just generally respected them more he’d be getting so much more done, when the truth is that he doesn’t do that because they don’t matter, and still haven’t woken up to that fact.

  55. 55
    low-tech cyclist says:

    Say what you want about the tenets of wingnuts, at least they don’t suggest starting wars for purely political reasons.

    Dubya wasn’t technically a wingnut, but he damned sure wasn’t a centrist. And who knows why he really went to war in Iraq. Probably because he could, and he wanted to be the tough guy, and also to show that he could do what daddy didn’t.

    But who really knows? And was that any better, or worse, than starting wars for political reasons?

  56. 56
    MattF says:

    @FlipYrWhig: And they write books containing important lessons about morality.

  57. 57
    CONGRATULATIONS! says:

    History is not going to treat the birth of American Empire very kindly. The idea that one should start a war with another nation just to get the economy moving is one of the most horrifically cold-blooded sentiments I’ve ever seen in print. By anyone. Including Hitler. At least he pretended such a step was regrettable.

  58. 58
    MattF says:

    @CONGRATULATIONS!: “War is Peace” is a first principle for empires.

  59. 59
    Chris says:

    @Redshift:

    I live and have grown up in and around Washington, which is why I always use the qualifier “Official Washington” to refer to that cesspool. But I understand that people outside of the area usually just use “Washington” as shorthand, so I just let it slide unless it’s egregious (like the Politico dude who was being commented on a couple pages threads back).

  60. 60
    bearcalypse says:

    But Libya was purely an altruistic intervention.. FOH.

  61. 61
    Ex Libris says:

    @Chris:
    That is a good point. War is not real for the vast majority. But liberals at least have enough insight to imagine that it would be bad for other people. For wingers it is all performance. They talk about anyone in uniform being a “hero” on their face book pages; they repost videos of little kids saluting soldiers and say “if only all those goddamn hippies showed as much respect as this little kid” blah blah blah. It’s reflexive and visceral – they don’t know who’s a hero and who isn’t, who is respectful and who isn’t, or even what those words mean. Probably obvious, but no less maddening for that!

  62. 62

    @FlipYrWhig: A tourist from another country on a cross country drive would have more insight into the country than these overpaid coddled morons.

  63. 63
    Paul in KY says:

    Republicans start a war for political reasons!! Perish the thought (goes to fainting couch)

    Would say that line probably gave Darth Cheney an evil chuckle.

  64. 64
    rikyrah says:

    @aimai:

    The thing they hated about Clinton was he came from outside and brought other outsiders, and they really hated that about Obama because: black and young. He had black and young supporters.He had an inner circle and they knew they weren’t going to be part of it.

    This is true. And, I love President and Mrs. Obama for treating them like the scum that they are. But, oh so politely.

  65. 65
    John D says:

    @Germy:

    Some of the technology activists who were key to the Dean, Obama and Sanders campaign have a new, audacious program: they’re going to run 535 bipartisan candidates for office in the 2016 election, backed by a single website for fundraising, grassroots organizing and messages, based on Bernie Sanders’ political platform.

    Given ballot access deadlines, that seems like a … stretch for 2016.

    And by stretch, I mean “insanely optimistic”.

  66. 66
    rikyrah says:

    @Germy:

    my lips are pursed reading this.

    uh huh
    uh huh

  67. 67
    MattF says:

    @John D: Not to mention a need for money.

  68. 68
    Peale says:

    @John D: If they were smart, they’d go to the states where republicans have a control of legislative and executive branches and change the rules.

  69. 69
  70. 70
    Peale says:

    @bearcalypse: Yeah. But it wasn’t supposed to help Obama’s re-election. It was supposed to help Cameron and Sarkozy…or something like that. I still don’t know exactly why Sarkozy was so hot for that war.

  71. 71
    negative 1 says:

    @rikyrah: People overestimate how much technology helps politics. It helps in the sense that volunteers and money are always nowhere near the levels a campaign needs, and the technology helps both be way more efficient (avoid knocking on doors of your ardent supporters or lost causes; just try and persuade those who can be pursuaded). However, there is no marketing program known to man that can spin shit into gold. I don’t care how good of a website it is; would you ever vote for Ted Cruz? Then what difference will ‘the World’s Greatest CRM Software’ make?

  72. 72
    Paul in KY says:

    @aimai: These courtiers are all quite wealthy, from writing the stories their masters want them to write. They can certainly buy in the DC housing market.

  73. 73
    Chyron HR says:

    @John D:

    You can do anything after you see a bird land on a podium. I think Thomas Jefferson said that.

  74. 74
    Paul in KY says:

    @low-tech cyclist: Fuck yes, Dubya was a ‘wingnut’!

  75. 75

    @Paul in KY: They prefer NoVa over living in DC and Maryland, unless they can find a place in Georgetown, which is quite difficult.

  76. 76
    negative 1 says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Yeah, I don’t disagree, but I happen to notice those all seem like traits the GOP cares about a whole lot more than dems.

  77. 77
    MomSense says:

    @Iowa Old Lady:

    I get the disdain for the two existing parties, but when I look at Maine, the third party enthusiasts scare me.

    As it should. We have LePage as a result.
    I voted for Angus King (strategically) but I think his campaign did a lot of damage because he kept pushing the BS that there is too much partisanship, blah, blah, blah why can’t we all just work together. The partisanship is the Republican ignorance and nihilism and economic treason. If there is a problem in Washington it is that the Republicans have become an extremist group intent on undermining our government.

    I’m also pissed at him for paycheck fairness and raising student loan interest rates. I really can’t stand him anymore and hate voting for him.

  78. 78
    Paul in KY says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: I just said they had the money to buy, if they wished.

  79. 79
    Technocrat says:

    @negative 1:

    People overestimate how much technology helps politics

    The word “technology” is doing a lot of work in that sentence. Some technologies will be marginally useful, some will be devastatingly effective. For example, social media networks are becoming so politically powerful that we will need legislation restricting their impact. Facebook is scary when even when they’re just fucking around:

    Facebook experiment boosts US voter turnout

    Just how much can activity on Facebook influence the real world? About 340,000 extra people turned out to vote in the 2010 US congressional elections because of a single election-day Facebook message, estimate researchers who ran an experiment involving 61 million users of the social network

    It shouldn’t be lost on anyone that this was an experiment to see if they could influence turnout, not an accidental byproduct of the platform. I guess because the mood control experiments were such a success, they decided to branch out.

    People are underestimating technology’s effect on politics, IMO.

  80. 80

    @Paul in KY: DC is a predominantly black city, as is Prince Georges County MD, one of the two MD counties contiguous with DC. Hence the NoVa preference.

  81. 81
    benw says:

    The candidate should be from the military or immediately announce someone with modern-warfare expertise or experience as running mate.

    Why do these guys always want the military in charge? They got all the war they wanted with a bunch of paranoid civilian armchair enthusiasts in the last WH. Christ, what an asshole.

  82. 82
    Paul in KY says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Darrnit, SC, I know that! I’m talking about the fancy parts of DC (where all the embassies are).

    I understand that many/most wealthy people choose to live in NoVA.

  83. 83
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @negative 1: They basically want a practical Republican who isn’t Ned Flanders. They’re cool with gay stuff, lady stuff, and weed, but they think it’s too easy to build a political career on promising great goodies so they prefer politicians who spite some portion of their electorate. Chris Christie was supposed to be their guy. Giuliani was their guy. Alan Simpson. And McCain made them all weak in the knees.

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    burnspbesq says:

    Just a brief drive-by to say “fuck the United States District Court for thr Middle District of North Carolina.”

    Fourth Circuit, do your stuff.

  85. 85

    @Paul in KY: Embassy Row past Dupont Circle, Georgetown, Cleveland Park etc. Bethesda is nice too. I used to live in PG county and some pplz from NoVa and DC were actually scared to come visit. I lived in a predominantly middle class area but the other side of the metro was a bit sketchy.

    ETA: My neighborhood was pretty mixed, one of the older suburbs, quite nice but not fancy and no McMansions. Lots of Senate and Congressional staffers but no media elite.

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    Paul in KY says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Why can’t their dream candidate spite all the Repubs on the moral hypocrisy/God bothering stuff?

  87. 87
    max says:

    @aimai: think that people underestimate how much of an imperial, or royal at any rate, court all of Washington is, especially for the permanent residents. Every four years, potentially, all the relationships shift as a new King comes in with a new court and new connections matter, or old ones are revived. The thing they hated about Clinton was he came from outside and brought other outsiders, and they really hated that about Obama because: black and young. He had black and young supporters.He had an inner circle and they knew they weren’t going to be part of it.

    I second all of your comment but I think part of what drives the centrist talk is the need to pull Clinton to the right. I am hoping she will have more sense then her husband and not go along. The optimistic take is that public opinion is way down on that kind of stuff unlike the 90’s and the 00’s.

    max
    [‘Fun times ahead.’]

  88. 88

    @Paul in KY: Embassy Row past Dupont Circle, Georgetown, Cleveland Park etc. Bethesda is nice too. I used to live in PG county and some pplz from NoVa and DC were actually scared to come visit. I lived in a predominantly middle class area but the other side of the metro was a bit sketchy.

    ETA: My neighborhood was pretty mixed, one of the older suburbs, quite nice but not fancy and no McMansions. Lots of Senate and Congressional staffers but no media elite. At least none that I knew of.

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    Paul in KY says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: I don’t want to harsh on you, as I like you & your posts. I was just originally giving my opinion to an aimai post that these ‘courtiers’ (the ones VDE rails against) are all wealthy to one extent or the other & could (if they wished) buy some property in any portion of DC (if any property in the tony parts was available).

    That’s all I was trying to say.

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    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Paul in KY: To a degree, Trump does that. We’ll see how the punditocrasy reacts.

  91. 91
    MattF says:

    @Paul in KY: Well, I live in downtown Bethesda, bought a condo back in 1998, before prices got to ‘ridiculous’. And it’s expensive– new condo construction across the street is asking over $1000/square foot. We’ll see if it actually sells, but I’m thinking it will.

  92. 92
    Sloegin says:

    The center-left hates getting the ‘peacenik’ label stuck on them, so they’re always going to be more bloodthirsty than the right.

    Funny thing is, it never removes the label. It only gets a bunch of people killed.

  93. 93
    daveNYC says:

    @Germy: At a guess, I’d say that they’ll be providing backing for whichever candidate in the election that they like more. If that person happens to be a Republican (ahem, LOL) then so be it. Bipartisan also is a Pavlovian happy word for journalists, plus it leaves open the option of endorsing a Republican (again, LOL) which in theory might nudge a couple of candidates a tiny smidgen to the left.

  94. 94

    @Paul in KY:Got it. I was trying to say that centrist types such Van De Hai may prefer NoVa for ideological reasons even though they could may be able to afford housing in tonier parts of DC. Also, they can’t build McMansions in DC like they can in NoVa. The politics of DC and MD are quite a bit liberal than that of most Beltway hacks. I guess we were talking past each other.

  95. 95
    Jeffro says:

    @Sloegin:

    The center-left hates getting the ‘peacenik’ label stuck on them,

    yes

    so they’re always going to be more bloodthirsty than the right.

    um yeah, good luck with that

  96. 96
    catclub says:

    @burnspbesq: Were they the ones who said that virtually all (if not all) of the NC voter suppression tools are ok?

  97. 97
    Paul in KY says:

    @FlipYrWhig: I was thinking that when I wrote it! He still gives a bit of lip service, IMO.

  98. 98
    burnspbesq says:

    @catclub:

    Yup.

  99. 99
    Paul in KY says:

    @MattF: I hope it sells & you make some great profit!

  100. 100
    Paul in KY says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: You are still a very cool person :-)

  101. 101
    Sloegin says:

    @Jeffro: The Bushes certainly wreck my earlier statement, but compare other Rs and Ds since FDR and it’s more of a wash.

  102. 102
    Miss Bianca says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: I believe a tourist named De Tocqueville may have proved your point already…

  103. 103
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Iowa Old Lady: And, notice, this guy is touting his experience in Maine, the poster child for third-party politics screwing up everything, as the basis for saying we need a centrist third party!

  104. 104

    @Matt McIrvin: Lincoln, ME is a small town by Maine standards, smaller than Portland or Bangor. I guess normal America is code for 99% white.

  105. 105
    Matt McIrvin says:

    Josh Marshall read this thing and described it as shocking and bizarre. I think it’s actually a sign of progress that it reads as shocking and bizarre, because to me it just read as old and lazy. To me it just read as the same old No Labels, Americans Elect nonsense that rich guys and techie types have been batting around since forever. Get beyond all this grubby partisanship and bickering, get all the smart genius guys in a room together and surely they’ll fix our problems! With some extra post-9/11 warmongering. Here’s the reaction from Peter Thiel.

  106. 106

    @Miss Bianca: I was thinking of him and Chinese travelers who have left accurate and detailed descriptions of India going as far back as the seventh century.

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  108. 108
    liberal says:

    And let’s remember this David Broder classic:…

    Good old DB. What a lovely combination of stupidity and douchebaggery.

  109. 109
    Bill Arnold says:

    @Germy:

    …they’re going to run 535 bipartisan candidates for office in the 2016 election…

    As described (I followed the links two levels) I don’t see how, as you say, this isn’t a plan to increase Republican dominance in the House of Representatives for at least several 2 year election cycles. If they focused on seats where they could realistically win, then it would be fine. But that’s not 400+ seats.

    @Peale:

    If they were smart, they’d go to the states where republicans have a control of legislative and executive branches and change the rules.

    LOL. I wonder if the press would ignore that.

    @daveNYC:

    At a guess, I’d say that they’ll be providing backing for whichever candidate in the election that they like more.

    No. Or at least I can’t read it that way. It appears to be a proposal for a full-up 3-d party effort, driven by technology. Drill into the links.

    Our candidates will be working people from many backgrounds and fields who:
    Are good at what they do.
    Are proven servants to their communities, families, friends.
    Have consistently passed on opportunities to sell out.
    In general, have never held or sought public office.
    Agree completely on a unified economic, social justice, and climate change platform.

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