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David Poland

By David Poland

Self-Loathing Dems; Part II

I was struck by Nora Ephron’s “McCain Won The Debate Because Obama Didn’t Slap Him Hard Enough” piece on Huffington Post. She was hardly alone. But what a bunch of whinny, self-destructive babies we on the left have become. We are so used to being under the thumb of conservative aggression that we’d rather get in our punches than win an election… or rather, we don’t really believe we can win, so we need our young, black, frontrunning presidental candidate to express our rage rather than to be the ideal we profess to see as so superior.
It’s the old “a conservative is a liberal who’s been mugged” thing. And I hate it.
The one thing that wrongheaded conservatives have is that they believe… even when, as now, they would be embarrassed to win with such a terrible team running.
Obama is not an attack dog. If he pretends to he one, he will lose. Yes, we could all write quips to throw at raging granny McCain. But it’s about winning, not the rush of a beatdown. And whether you were watching the meter on CNN or reading post-game polls, the key voters, the Independents, are turned off by the negative crap. And we cannot delude ourselves into thinking that it’s because we are right and the other side is wrong.
You could see it on SNL last night when they tried to be more than even-handed by making Obama the butt of the nastiest crap thrown at him… a few laughs… but McCain’s stuff got bigger laughs because people get that and figured it out on their own, much as with Palin.
So calm down… stop obsessing… change isn’t easy… but it’s on the way. Don’t, as Grandpa would say, snatch a loss from the jaws of victory. Obama is smarter than the elders of our party. He’ll take his 6 point win and never have to bloody an opponent who is so good at bloodying himself.

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80 Responses to “Self-Loathing Dems; Part II”

  1. Cadavra says:

    I’m guessing that last sentence is supposed to be “embarrassed to WIN with”…?

  2. mysteryperfecta says:

    I don’t think McCain won the debate, and I don’t think that a more agressive Obama would have helped him “win” the debate. I thought both candidates did pretty well; both made some compelling arguments, both had a couple solid counters, and both articulated their points well. I thought Obama was noticeably stiff at the very beginning, but he loosened up soon after. I would have liked to seen just a little bit of that trademark incredulity from McCain; he had one passionate response late in the debate that was one of his better moments. Overall, I thought the debate was a draw; at this point, I think McCain needs to be winning these debates.
    The best part of the debate was that the crowd remained quiet. I like that.

  3. IOIOIOI says:

    I took her column as being the response of an older lady, that belives real leaders act like McCain. When the fact of the matter is: one of them acted presidential. While the other simply acted “mean”.
    He’s the ideal. That’s what he has become. I am simply shocked that so many in this country have no idea what the IDEAL means. Nor do they understand how the world sees a president being, and he/she sure as hell are not supposed to respond to their opponent with such repulsion.

  4. mysteryperfecta says:

    DP- I’m struck by how you just highlighted a column from a conservative who criticized Palin, but you’re appalled by a liberal criticizing OBAMA. Somehow that’s being a self-destructive baby.

  5. christian says:

    Here’s the thing: Obama looked like a smart, thoughtful PRESIDENT. McCain was petulant and kept his side to Obama, refusing to even look him in the eyes. Is that the kind of graceless hothead we want in charge?
    We all wish Obama would zing. But that ain’t his style and won’t be. But maybe America is over this “cowboy diplomacy” one-upmmanship and are ready to be talked to in ideas not instincts.
    Obama won the debate by showing he is more than ready to stand his ground against McCain and still show courtesy — how McCain thinks he can be bi-partisan with his attitude didn’t fly with the country.
    I mean, Nora Ephron wrote YOU’VE GOT MAIL.

  6. Tofu says:

    You know, this was supposed to be McCain’s strong debate. The other two are toss ups for him. And then he does everything he can to get out of it? And then delivers a performance that (at best) works as a tie for him? In that regard, Obama wins. A lot of people were impressed Friday, since they may have been expecting an empty suit, but instead got a calm, responsible future leader.

  7. David Poland says:

    I’m not sure if you think I am being self-destructive or if Ephron is, mystery, but she writes about being the most optimistic person in that room and I hear the same whining elsewhere.
    I added to this iPhone’s entry for more clarity on my point. But Obama can take criticism. Those of us who never saw Obama as some deity get this… and I believe that includes Obama.
    The greatest danger for Obama right now is Biden humiliating Palin instead of letting her do it for herself.

  8. frankbooth says:

    Yeah, whatever, Nora. According to the polls, a majority disagree.
    Obama can’t appear to be the scary, angry black man. We want somebody cool and poised to guide us through this mess, and that’s how he came across. He could have said “I agree” a bit less, but he came across as more likable, more in control, and a hell of a lot less cranky.
    McCain is Gore this time. The eye-contact thing in particular made him look either too arrogant to acknowledge his rival, or too afraid of the alpha dog. The fact that he tried to weasel out, got called on it and came slinking back had him on the defensive from the beginning, and it showed. He didn’t want to be there.

  9. Blackcloud says:

    Self-Loathing Dems pt. II? More like pt. II thousand.

  10. mysteryperfecta says:

    “I’m not sure if you think I am being self-destructive or if Ephron is”
    I can see how my wording might have been confusing. I was commenting on how YOU think Ephron is being self-destructive, while at the same time highlighting Rod Dreher’s criticism of Palin (which I assume is “enlightened”?) Wouldn’t Dreher’s comments be self-destructive?
    And now we have you on record: Obama by 6. We’ll see.

  11. L.B. says:

    This eye-contact thing is getting a lot of play and deservedly so. The thing that got me was that McCain didn’t even look at Obama when he was shaking his hand. My grandfather would have had a conniption over that. It’s just so ungentlemanly.
    I know. Not the thing you should base a vote around, but as things come down to the strength of individual character, McCain really put his character in the worst possible light the other night. Disagree all you want to. Even believe that the other person doesn’t have as much of a right to be on par with you in this election if you have to. But you’re an adult with the same title as the other guy and you’re campaigning for the same job having met the achievement requirements set by your individual parties. The least you can do is give them the basic respect ordained by social mores. I know he was raised better than that. There’s no way an admiral raised his kid to look off to the side when greeting anyone.
    I’m clearly partisan here and may be overlooking any number of things on our side. But this really was one of those unnecessary sleights. It earns you no points and it makes you look small and mean.

  12. Martin S says:

    McCain doesn’t look at his opponents unless they are friends, like Rudy or Huck. He never looked at Romney, especially when it was down to just the two of them. It’s based on two things; it helps him focus on what’s being said instead of what’s being attempted and it agitates. Romney had the exact same response Obama did, except since Mitt and McCain were sitting, Romney was able to pivot exactly at him, barely a foot away, which almost got McCain off message.
    Obama did as well as he could. He swallowed the stammering and brought up a valid, over-looked point about Chinese presence in the third world. If he had more details like that, especially about Pakistan, it would have served him well.
    The bracelet comment was forced and something his handlers must have told him to try and get out before McCain…The Bush III argument is about dead…If Obama wanted to be Poland, he could have cracked McCain over the Ms. Congeniality line but that would have cut both ways as it would have reminded people of the “you’re likable enough” moment.
    Barack’s problem is now economics, contrary to media belief. He pushes a populist line that needs a massive re-tooling after tomorrow because it now sounds exorbitant. He tried to be a cost-cutter, but no one buys it because of Pelosi and Reid. If he finds a credible angle, he’ll win.

  13. Martin S says:

    …And if the Russians do something in the next 35 days, McCain will win easily.

  14. IOIOIOI says:

    Sure Martin. You keep defending your tax bracket, chuckles.

  15. David Poland says:

    There is a difference in the mindsets, mystery.
    Yes, I think that the far right has now turned back on McCain, sensing a loss. I’ve written that.
    But the left has Loser’s Syndrome in a big way, which sometimes merges with Arrogant Ass syndrome, so the arguments start flying that we’re going to lose and it’s because the campaign isn’t doing what I would do. It’s bullshit and it’s self-defeating.
    As for setting my number… cute… yeah… an over/under on this… that’s what it’s all about…

  16. IOIOIOI says:

    Mystery is a fucking conservative in the 21st century. History will be riddled with books mocking him and anyone like him in 20 years. Let alone 50. So let him mock you, Heat. You at least are not antiquated.

  17. L.B. says:

    I for one am glad the Obama campaign isn’t doing what I would do and the McCain campaign is. The rest is between me and my therapist.

  18. cobhome says:

    Wonder what new bizarre drama the McCain camp will come up with next – big lead for Obama in the polls – expect something truly weird or dirt in the vein of “teaching kindergarteners sex”

  19. IOIOIOI says:

    Next week on McCAIN: Episode 45910 – CHEESE!

  20. scooterzz says:

    mc cain’s ‘october surprise’ will be the alaskan shotgun wedding …. there won’t be a dry right eye in the house…..

  21. movielocke says:

    nah, the next big announcement on wednesday night or thursday morning will be that Trig has suddenly taken ill, or that Bristol is suddenly having complications with her pregnancy, necessitating Palin to call off the debate for family reasons.
    The october wedding (BIGGER THAN DIANA&CHARLES’ SET YOUR TIVOS NOW!) won’t happen until the second to last week of october, but we’ll have a week before the wedding of the news primarily covering the wedding preparations. Palin will be asked hard hitting questions about how her executive experience has helped her coordinate her daughter’s wedding on such incredible such notice. Noone would have thought that she’d want to get married BEFORE the election, it was such a surprise when Bristol told us that’s what she wanted.”

  22. jeffmcm says:

    The bracelet comment was not ‘forced’ by Obama. McCain has been using that line everywhere he goes because he panders. Obama rarely, if ever, brings up his bracelet thing. Oh, and obviously since McCain wasn’t wearing a flag pin, he hates America. And the ‘Bush III’ argument might not be working with Martin, but it sure is effective with America as a whole since Bush is down to what, 19% approval?
    And what are the Russians going to do in the next 35 days, invade the Crimea? Nonsense. Them doing a mysterious ‘something’ may or may not help McCain – if he looks bellicose and makes more of his trademark rash decisions, he’ll look bad. It is no longer possible for McCain to win ‘easily’ unless Obama turns out to be feeding secret intelligence to Bin Laden or Biden turns out to be gay.

  23. Stella's Boy says:

    Now that more and more people are saying Obama won the debate and is pulling ahead by a larger margin (, expect very familiar attacks about how America is less safe with him as president.

  24. mysteryperfecta says:

    “As for setting my number… cute… yeah… an over/under on this… that’s what it’s all about…”
    You have to admit that your prediction is incredibly smug.
    “The bracelet comment was not ‘forced’ by Obama.”
    It sounded forced because he seemed unfamiliar with the name. Of course he has the right to bring it up. And how do you know how often McCain and how little Obama bring up the topic of their respective bracelets? Are you listening to every stump speech both give?

  25. Stella's Boy says:

    First lapel pins and hand over heart during the pledge. Now bracelets. Awesome.

  26. Martin S says:

    The bracelet comment was forced, I don’t expect Obamaites to see that. He lunged at McCain’s story, stopped, fumbled and then got to it. That’s a sign of unfamiliarity, especially for a guy who knows his angles down pat.
    As for not bringing it up, it appears the family of the soldier believes otherwise.
    Bush’s approval rating has nothing to do with what is working on the stump. “More of the same” has run its course. Sorry. It’s now moving to a broader approach. If approval numbers were such barometers, Obama wouldn’t have a prayer because he’s a memeber of Congress, which has been lower than W since the Dem’s took over. Blame whoever you want, but that’s the number.
    Obama was lost on Russia. If something happens – they haven’t left Georgia yet – it’s shows prescience by McCain. That’s been Obama’s argument over Iraq and the same one he made at the debate.
    Most of this doesn’t matter, truthfully. The bailout bill is a nightmare. The hedge fund meltdown begins in two weeks. Gas is up while the barrel is down. There’s a mass nationalization coming with the next administration. Giant corporations like GE have wanted a Chinaesque realignment for a number of years and it looks like they’re going to get it.
    Anyone on the lower end of the spectrum are going to spend the next several years as a ward of the state.
    Regarding film, there’s going to be three, possibly four, studios left. I’ve spent the past few weeks grading every possible combination because entertainment is still considered recession-proof. The difference now is the technology flux and international money which never existed. Depending on who the buyers are, we could see an unprecedented mass decentralization of the industry, whereas the studio in name only is in LA. I can’t rattle off names, but anyone using outside liquidity to produce are on the precipice.
    If you have under a 100k in the bank, leave it because it’s insured.

  27. Stella's Boy says:

    All this fuss over a damn bracelet?
    Soldier’s mother ‘ecstatic’ about Obama’s bracelet
    DINESH RAMDE | September 28, 2008 08:09 PM EST |

  28. christian says:

    Martin, I love you but when you parrot Drudge/GOP quick-smear talking points like:
    “As for not bringing it up, it appears the family of the soldier believes otherwise.”
    But the truth was already out there. I mean, I don’t quote Kos (as he’s an idiot).
    And we can thank the right-wing free-market anti-regulation heroes for a chunk of the mess we’re in. As if McCain is going to buck the game. To paraphrase Bill Hicks, do you kinda sorta look around and think that maybe the system doesn’t work? That we haven’t gotten to the really great ideas yet?
    But thank Gawd entertainment is indeed recession-proof. As Carl Denham wisely said, “The public must have a pretty face.”

  29. jeffmcm says:

    I just want to agree with Christian that Kos is an idiot, plus he thinks we’re stupid.

  30. Stella's Boy says:

    Now that it is not just the left criticizing Palin, Republicans are blaming elites of their own party.
    “In defense, Republicans say the complaints are coming from ‘intellectual’ conservatives — not Main Street Republicans, who they insist love the ‘hockey mom,’ from Alaska, as Palin describes herself.”
    From this:

  31. christian says:

    “intellectual’ conservatives”
    Insert oxymoron joke here.
    But would that be Bill Kristol, the Wrongest Man Alive, who thinks that somehow Palin is being “handled” and not set free to share her infinite wisdom with the masses?

  32. Stella's Boy says:

    It just strikes me as such a desperate, pathetic defense of the mounting criticism from conservatives. “Well, yeah, but remember so and so is an intellectual conservative.” First it’s elite liberals, now it’s elite conservatives.

  33. LYT says:

    The SNL debate skit was surprisingly poor — the only semi-decent joke in it was McCain’s continual “maverick” proposals. Armisen’s had all summer to work on his Obama impersonation and it’s still terrible. Hammond has McCain’s voice down, but he doesn’t seem to care about the other obvious mannerisms like the constant blinking, jaw-clenching, not making eye contact, etc.
    And Russia probably won’t do anything in the next 35 days because their economy tanked worse than ours right after the Georgia incident.

  34. jeffmcm says:

    Martin, that mention you made of congressional approval ratings seems to me to be a generally meaningless statistic. They were in the 20s in 1994 when the Republicans took over, but they’re even lower now – and the Democrats are going to gain, not lose, seats in both houses this time around.

  35. mysteryperfecta says:

    “And we can thank the right-wing free-market anti-regulation heroes for a chunk of the mess we’re in.”
    Wrong as wrong can be.

  36. jeffmcm says:

    ‘Wrong as wrong can be’ is 100% wrong. That above statement is at least 10% right.

  37. mysteryperfecta says:

    “‘Wrong as wrong can be’ is 100% wrong. That above statement is at least 10% right.”
    Damn you, jeff. What I meant to say was, “Wrong as Wong can be,” which refers to an old college professor of mine who was wrong 90% of the time. But nothing gets past you.

  38. David Poland says:

    Yeah, mystery… so how are bubbles like this created? How did Enron happen?
    Just checking to see if you have a position on this.

  39. mysteryperfecta says:

    “Just checking to see if you have a position on this.”
    You mean I can’t just call “bullshit” like you, and move on to a topic of my choice? No fair!

  40. David Poland says:

    You know, mystery… nothing could be more disingenuous than trying to argue that I won’t stand by and support ANY argument I make about ANYTHING in here.
    We may disagree, but if anything, I am known for being too detailed in making my arguments.

  41. jeffmcm says:

    I hate to be the asshole here, but ‘detailed arguments’ and ‘good arguments’ are not necessarily the same thing.

  42. Martin S says:

    Christian – I had no idea Drudge covered it. I read it at ABCNews. As for parrotting, the vast majority of the argument found here is distilled from Huff Post.
    LYT – that’s true, but they are still in a holding pattern.
    Re:free markets – I’ve never said it didn’t hold blame. Of course it does, but the fed holds much more because they dictate the rules of the game. Greenspan cut the rate to nothing. Private sector timebombs of Fannie & Freddie, deregulated energy markets. Federal govt is not the victim of lobbyists, they collude with them. Enron, Mr. Poland, was a byproduct of Clinton’s energy deregulation of the mid-90’s. If he didn’t pass that, they would never be.
    As for “great ideas”, what a typical zero-experience argument. The closer a country moves to socialism, the higher the unemployment.
    Jeff – when the GOP Congress shutdown in ’94, yeah, it wasn’t popular. You’re the guy who keeps touting the presidential approval numbers, which is still higher than Congress.
    As for picking up seats, that’s the MSM wisdom.

  43. Stella's Boy says:

    “As for picking up seats, that’s the MSM wisdom.”
    My understanding is that even most Republicans are worried about losing more seats this year. Is that not the case? Just this morning I heard a story on the news concerning a lawsuit in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. For the first time in 30 years there are more registered Democrats than Republicans there. Apparently this was of great concern to the Republican party (they are accused of moving a polling place to suppress voter turnout). I imagine Republicans nationwide share this concern.

  44. mysteryperfecta says:

    “You know, mystery… nothing could be more disingenuous than trying to argue that I won’t stand by and support ANY argument I make about ANYTHING in here.”
    Oh, but I can give examples. Like when I asserted that Obama’s positions share many characteristics with socialism. You replied, “Bullshit,” said that America is a centrist country, and then went on to some other topic.

  45. christian says:

    Can somebody let the Birchers of America know that we already are a socialist country? Who pays for all those street lights and roads, police and fire stations, and all the billions flowing to the endless maw of the military….

  46. Blackcloud says:

    Christian, that’s not at all what socialism is. So either you’re being saracastic or have no idea what you’re talking about. Which is it?

  47. christian says:

    The definition of socialism changes depending on what side you’re on, doesn’t it?

  48. Joe Leydon says:

    Actually, Blackcloud, you might be surprised at how many people in this country actually do believe public schools are socialistic. No kidding.

  49. Stella's Boy says:

    My father-in-law is one of them Joe. Hardly a day goes by without him stating as much.

  50. christian says:

    Michael Medved rails against school lunch programs.
    Why? The Road to Socialism!!!!

  51. Joe Leydon says:

    Speaking of politics (sort of): I know “An American Carol” is supposed to open this weekend, but I’ll be darned if I’ve seen any print or TV ads for it yet in my neck of the woods. (Just a trailer and a lobbhy poster.) And, frankly, I would have thought Texas would be a target market for this flick.

  52. Stella's Boy says:

    I have seen one or two TV spots for An American Carol within the past few days. If Michael Moore fat jokes strike you as hilarious satire, you will be pleased.

  53. Joe Leydon says:

    As I posted elsewhere: Even the posters for this one look awful. And the trailer? Troma bad.

  54. Stella's Boy says:

    If Fireproof can open to almost $7 million while playing in about 800 theaters, can An American Carol find an audience with a release double that?

  55. storymark says:

    I’ve been seeing LOTS of ads for An American Carol.
    I have absolutemy no desire to see it, but I just found out a guy I made a (very, very, very, bad) movie with right out of college plays JFK. So, I miiiight just check it out.

  56. Blackcloud says:

    “The definition of socialism changes depending on what side you’re on, doesn’t it?”
    No. What one thinks the definition of socialism is might change depending on what side one is on, but not the definition itself. Someone may think government spending on defense is socialism, but that merely proves they have no idea what they are talking about.

  57. Joe Leydon says:

    But the thing about Fireproof is, they primed the pump with an e-mail campaign that started months ago. (As I posted elsewhere, I assume I’m on their mailing list because I reviewed Facing the Giants.) On the other hand, did anyone here notice Forever Strong also opened last weekend?

  58. L.B. says:

    Lots of CAROL ads on Comedy Central. The short one with nothing but the fat guy getting hit by multiple objects and then getting slapped by O’Reilly. Running a lot during Daily/Colbert, which may not be the audience they need.
    In any case it will be interesting to see how it does. It being crap won’t disqualify it from making lots of money. So, we’ll see how many show up for a right-wing comedy.

  59. Stella's Boy says:

    I saw a poster for Forever Strong at the theater when I saw Burn After Reading, but I didn’t know when it opened.
    Is there a similar campaign for An American Carol, something to get out the word among conservatives?

  60. Stella's Boy says:

    Maybe they’re just hoping to make a few bucks before it’s on DVD in three months. Like a Larry the Cable Guy movie.

  61. Joe Leydon says:

    I wonder if Carol will outgross Religulous (which, BTW, I quite liked)? It looks like a pretty damn crowded weekend coming up. But, truth to tell, I’m actually most geeked to go see Appaloosa again.

  62. Stella's Boy says:

    This weekend is pretty crowded. Plus, I imagine An American Carol’s target audience will be more interested in MLB playoffs this weekend.

  63. jeffmcm says:

    Martin S., Congress wasn’t shut down in 1994. The Republicans took it over in 1994, then they shut down the government in Nov. 1995-Jan. 1996. And yes, it was highly unpopular. Still not sure what your point is. Mine is that unpopular Congressional ratings seem to be worthless unless attached to a particular leader (Gingrich, Pelosi), as unpopular ratings led to the Dems losing power in 1994, but not to Republicans losing power in 1996, and that very low approval ratings for Congress this year will be reflected in Democratic gains in both houses. And yes, that is the mainstream wisdom, which will also be correct. Hedging my bets, Democrats will gain 3 seats in the Senate and 10 in the House, that’s a mild and safe guess.

  64. L.B. says:

    I’m with you, Joe. Appaloosa is top of the list. I told my girlfriend that we needed to see it. She hadn’t seen anything about and asked why. I said, “Viggo and Ed Harris in a Western where they go up against Jeremy Irons.”
    She said that was all that need to be said.

  65. L.B. says:

    I’m with you, Joe. Appaloosa is top of the list. I told my girlfriend that we needed to see it. She hadn’t seen anything about and asked why. I said, “Viggo and Ed Harris in a Western where they go up against Jeremy Irons.”
    She said that was all that need to be said.

  66. L.B. says:

    Damn you, Hot Blog, and your devious way of making me double post!

  67. christian says:

    So if you want to go by the definition of socialism, then you could equally say that America is not a capitalist nation. What with all our socialism.
    But let Republican David Brooks speak:
    House Republicans led the way and will get most of the blame. It has been interesting to watch them on their single-minded mission to destroy the Republican Party. Not long ago, they led an anti-immigration crusade that drove away Hispanic support. Then, too, they listened to the loudest and angriest voices in their party, oblivious to the complicated anxieties that lurk in most American minds.
    Now they have once again confused talk radio with reality. If this economy slides, they will go down in history as the Smoot-Hawleys of the 21st century. With this vote, they

  68. Joe Leydon says:

    Also: Adapted (quite faithfully) from a novel by Robert B. Parker (who has already written a sequel. I’ve already seen it twice — once as a rough cut before I did interviews, again at Toronto — and I enjoyed it enough to actually purchase a ticket for a third looksee.

  69. L.B. says:

    That’s valid, Joe. But I’m in less danger of her dumping me for Parker than those other two bad-asses. (Though, hell, I’d consider dumping her for them as well.)

  70. Joe Leydon says:

    L.B.: Renee Zellweger is sexier (if not downright sluttier) than she’s been in quite some time. There’s actually some fleeting nudity, but I think that might have been a body double. I’ll have to look real, real close this time to make sure. (Damn, I’m sounding a bit like I’m trying to steal LexG’s shtick here. Well, at least I didn’t do a JW and ask Ed Harris if he had any on-set photos.)

  71. L.B. says:

    Joe: Dude, we’re all well aware of your inner-Lex. The flesh may be older, but the spirit has a raging BONER.
    Sorry for derailing a poli thread to talk movies (sort of).

  72. Joe Leydon says:

    L.B., now you have me worried. I mean, what if there really isn’t a LexG, and I’ve been unwittingly carrying on some kind of Fight Club split personality thing here? I mean, I invited the guy over for a drink last time I was in L.A. — but he didn’t show up. Uh-oh.

  73. Joe Leydon says:

    BTW: Just in case Renee reads this thread and seriously considers kicking my ass: I meant you were playing slutty, not that… well, you know. OK?
    Hell, I saw Cold Mountain, and I know this gal likely could drop me like a bad habit if she had a mind to.

  74. Blackcloud says:

    “What with all our socialism.”
    I still don’t see any socialism, unless you’re still talking about public works and the defense budget. Which, again, aren’t socialism by any accepted definition of the term.

  75. Martin S says:

    Christian – I was wondering how long it would take you to quote Brooks. As I’ve stated before, the day he represents center-right norm, is the day we becomes the Democratic party.
    Jeff – Pelosi is the Mommy Dearest of this Congress. She’s the poster-girl. She has more notoriety than Delay ever did.

  76. Stella's Boy says:

    What does Brooks represent? Is he one of those darn conservative elites?

  77. Martin S says:

    But thank Gawd entertainment is indeed recession-proof.
    I meant to comment on this earlier; My point was that even Big Media is going to get pulled under. It will not be as recession-proof this time as it has in the past, because the industry is no longer self-sustaining. Production is going to contract, IMO, by 25%.
    Here’s the first shoe. The obvious one.
    Here’s the second, a marriage attempt by NCBU management, aka Zucker, before GE entertains offers.
    Usually, this would provide a great opportunity for the independent scene or independent media, but it won’t be in theatrical exhibition.

  78. jeffmcm says:

    Martin re: Pelosi, I’m sure you’re right (it helps that DeLay cleverly managed to run the show while never taking the title of Speaker of the House) but my point is, I don’t see a lot of traction out there from Republicans running against Pelosi the way Clinton managed to run against Gingrich.

  79. Martin S says:

    Jeff- totally right. It’s always been the strength of the Dems to focus culpability onto a person. The Repubs have never understood this. I think it’s born from the ideological difference; group v individual. Dems want to see a person held responsible for the actions of a group, while Repubs can’t make the linkage.

  80. jeffmcm says:


The Hot Blog

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon