The Latest Poutrage

I can’t believe Sarah Palin hasn’t tweeted about this yet:

The backstory is that the NASA administrator was interviewed on Al Jazeera and said this:

When I became the NASA Administrator – before I became the NASA Administrator – he charged me with three things: One was that he wanted me to re-inspire children to want to get into science and math, that he wanted me to expand our international relationships, and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with predominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science, math, and engineering.”

Question: Are you in some sort of diplomatic role .. to win hearts and minds?

Bolden: NO NO, not at all. Its not a diplomatic anything. What it is – is that it is trying to expand our outreach so that we get more people who can contribute to the things that we do – the international Space Station is as great as it is because we have a conglomerate of about 15 plus nations who have contributed something to that partnership that has made it what it is today …”

If the International Space Station is good for anything, it’s outreach and other associated “feel good” bullshit, but FSM help us if Muslims take part in that.

Stay Out of My State

This is just what West Virginia needs:

Top GOP strategists are plotting ways to force WV to hold a special election this year, in hopes of giving the party a better chance to pick off the seat of the late Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV), according to several party sources.

The RNC and the WV GOP are exploring ways to bring a lawsuit that would force the Mountaineer State to hold an election earlier than planned, the sources said. That could be the best option for the GOP, which believes it can win Byrd’s seat in this favorable political climate.

But it will involve compelling the state to actually hold the contest. WV Sec/State Natalie Tennant (D) said last week that Gov. Joe Manchin’s (D) eventual appointee would be able to serve until the ’12 elections. And election law precedent appears to be on Tennant’s side, given a WV Supreme Court decision from ’94.

The RNC has already transfered money to the state GOP, according to a committee source.

I hope Natalie Tennant and Jake Glance understand the flash mob of hate that is about to descend on them, eager to inspect their countertops. Tennant is pretty much a straight shooter and is just following established law, but that won’t matter a bit.

Now There is a Hot Scoop

The Politico:

Still, Republicans have settled on a strategy of painting Kagan, who has never been a judge, as a politically driven ideologue. They insist they haven’t ruled out a filibuster, though that seems highly unlikely.

I’m sure you are shocked by this.

Potty Training By Judith Miller and Sally Quinn

If this doesn’t make you want to throw up in your mouth, I don’t know what will:

“How could we destroy our standards by hiring a guy stupid enough to write about people that way in a public forum?” one of my friends at the Post asked me when we spoke earlier today. “I’m not suggesting that many people on the paper don’t lean left, but there’s leaning left, and then there’s behaving like an idiot.”

I gave my friend the answer he already knew: The sad truth is that the Washington Post, in its general desperation for page views, now hires people who came up in journalism without much adult supervision, and without the proper amount of toilet-training. This little episode today is proof of this. But it is also proof that some people at the Post (where I worked, briefly, 20 years ago) still know the difference between acceptable behavior and unacceptable behavior, and that maybe this episode will lead to the reimposition of some level of standards.

That’s the Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, who single-handedly wrote the absolutely most factless pieces of propaganda in the run-up to the war in Iraq this side of Judy Miller, and to my knowledge has never corrected the record in detail and atoned for his sins.

That’s the same Jeffrey Goldberg who is so incapable of forming constructive arguments that he basically spent the earlier part of the year sputtering that his co-worker Andrew Sullivan is an anti-Israeli propagandist. That is, of course, until the adults at the Atlantic probably stepped in and told him to knock it off (an assertion of mine that has at least as much evidence as Goldberg’s assertions about WMD. Although it is entirely possible he just stopped because he was losing the argument).

And we could go on and on, whether the topic is Chas Freeman, Iran, etc.

If that is the kind of bile and trash that Jeffrey Goldberg thinks makes him a refined and “toilet-trained” writer, then I can only assume that every one of the adults in his blackberry and in his rolodex still shits the bed. The rules still hold true- all sorts of disgusting and bizarre worldviews are acceptable among the “toilet-trained” Beltway elites (Krauthammer, Will, Thiessen, Kristol, and many others still write for the WaPo), but don’t drink out of the finger bowl or use a four letter word or your ass is history.

*** Update ***

Goldberg is the gift that keeps on giving:

I’ve been leaked postings from JournoList before — wonderfully charming things written about me, as you might have guessed — and I haven’t had the opportunity to use them, but would be happy to if the need arose.

Followed shortly by this:

. On the other hand, I was repulsed — really repulsed — by his invitation to Matt Drudge to kill himself. I despise violent keyboard-cowboyism…

Shorter Jeffrey Goldberg: “I’m not against using my perch at the Atlantic to publish someone’s private emails to viciously destroy their character and career, but what really bothers me is if someone makes a joke privately!”

I think that pretty much sums up everything you need to know about Goldberg. I’m just done reading him. Period.

Blaming Turkey


WESTERN GOVERNMENTS have been right to be concerned about Israel’s poor judgment and botched execution in the raid against the Free Gaza flotilla. But they ought to be at least as worried about the Turkish government of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, which since Monday has shown a sympathy toward Islamic militants and a penchant for grotesque demagoguery toward Israel that ought to be unacceptable for a member of NATO.


Mr. Erdogan’s crude attempt to exploit the incident comes only a couple of weeks after he joined Brazil’s president in linking arms with Mr. Ahmadinejad, whom he is assisting in an effort to block new U.N. sanctions. What’s remarkable about his turn toward extremism is that it comes after more than a year of assiduous courting by the Obama administration, which, among other things, has overlooked his antidemocratic behavior at home, helped him combat the Kurdish PKK and catered to Turkish sensitivities about the Armenian genocide. Israel is suffering the consequences of its misjudgments and disregard of U.S. interests. Will Mr. Erdogan’s behavior be without cost?

If nothing else, you have to admire the absolute chutzpah of the Washington Post and the pro-Israel lobby. Israeli commandos storm vessels in international waters, kill nine civilians and wound several dozen others, and the Washington Post wants… Turkey to pay a price. And I’m betting the Washington Post rejects an international investigation into the mess, preferring for an Israeli-led investigation (if that), and I’m reasonably sure we can forget about the WaPo calling for sanctions against Israel. But Turkey, on the other hand. Those guys need to pay for the people Israel killed.

I wish this hadn’t been so predictable, but if you just realize that much of the media, most of Congress, and the entire right-wing of the political spectrum are operating from the perspective that Israel can simply do no wrong, you would have known why I immediately expected a blame Turkey mantra to start. As Greenwald has noted multiple times, things are so screwed up and out of whack that there is far more debate about the appropriateness of Israel’s behavior in Israel than is allowed here in the United States.

And finally, as Larison has pointed out, what is remarkable about Erdogan’s statements is not how belligerent they are, but how restrained they have been. His population is in an absolute froth, but other than some mild rhetoric and withdrawing diplomats, has there been any real action on the part of Turkey? No. Look no farther than Israel’s response to a similar number of dead- the incursion into Gaza in which they killed 1500 for a dozen or so killed in rocket attacks. Now tell me Turkey and her officials have over-reacted by offering up some moderately heated rhetoric.