June 28, 2007

Newsweek serves up the hot news that voters are swayed by emotion...

... and tries to sell us the laughable theory that Democrats, not realizing this blindingly obvious reality, have gone wrong by relying only on rational argument. Meanwhile, "the GOP has already mastered the dark art of psych-ops—of pushing the right buttons in people’s brains to win their vote."

Ridiculous.

The article is mainly about the book “The Political Brain: The Role of Emotion in Deciding the Fate of the Nation,” by Drew Westen:
Westen’s thesis is simple. “A dispassionate mind that makes decisions by weighing the evidence and reasoning to the most valid conclusions bears no relation to how the mind and brain actually work.” That’s true when it comes to choosing a significant other, buying a car, and choosing a president. Madison Avenue has known this for decades. Democrats haven’t.
Oh, please.
... Westen has penned powerful sound bites and mini-speeches that Dems could use to justify their core positions on perennial issues. Abortion, and bills outlawing it (as GOP platforms have long called for) or requiring parental consent? “My opponent puts the rights of rapists above the rights of their victims, guaranteeing every rapist the right to choose the mother of his child. . . My opponent believes that if a 16-year-old girl is molested by her father and becomes pregnant, she should be forced by the government to have his child, and if she doesn’t want to she should be forced by the government to go to the man who raped her and ask for his consent.” Tougher gun restrictions? How about an ad showing a parade of Arab-looking men walking into a gun store, setting their money on the counter and walking out with three or four semi-automatics each, with this voice-over: “My opponent thinks you shouldn’t have to show a photo ID or get a background check to buy a handgun. He thinks anyone who wants an AK-47 should be able to buy one, no questions asked. What’s the point of fighting terrorists abroad if we’re going to arm them over here?”
Hilariously, Newsweek claims that the reason Democrats and not Republicans are going to Westen for advice is that Republicans already know they need to use emotion. Never mind that that Westen's book is plainly speaking to Democrats and advising them on how to make their positions more emotionally appealing.

Ridiculous.

147 comments:

amba said...

Wait, don't you think that's true? That Dems are emotionally tone-deaf? Weren't you making fun of Al Gore not so long ago for his solemn screed on Reason?

Ann Althouse said...

Amba, I think purporting to appeal to reason is really an emotional appeal. Democrats deal in self-flattery, claiming to be intelligent, informed, and nuanced. This is quite emotional. Saying this is what smart people do is not a rational argument but an emotional one. Gore's book is ridiculous because of that.

And his movie does a great job of using emotion.

Ann Althouse said...

Now, they may still be tone-deaf, in that they don't do their emotional appeals well enough. Or it may be that people don't like product enough. Even the most brilliant ad for a car, stirring primal emotions, isn't going to make you buy a car that doesn't suit you at all.

amba said...

In any event, that's the Thomas Frank argument -- in What's the Matter With Kansas? -- that Republicans have distracted blue-collar and lower-middle-class voters from their own true economic interests by hitting their cultural hot buttons, their identity and sexual fears. Dems have some notion of Jeremy Bentham, utilitarian, rational self-interest. They think you're supposed to get emotional about that -- about social class. Maybe social class always was an abstract, artificial "tribe" invented by Karl Marx as a political vehicle, and now that fiction is dead -- people's true tribal identification is with symbols more tangible and colorful than numbers, which cross class lines.

amba said...

(We're cross-talking but hitting the same themes) That's why Gore appeals to the emotions of an élite -- people who feel good by thinking of themselves as smart. The Dems have trouble reaching people who feel good by thinking of themselves as good, not necessarily smart. In fact, a lot of people think too smart might just be evil.

Pogo said...

Re: "a lot of people think too smart might just be evil"
That's very true, and represents a longstanding reticence and misgiving about intellectuals. I long puzzled about that, but now see that it's often a wise approach.

As in "Too smart for (y)our own good."

amba said...

Our karate master Mas Oyama applied it to women; he would say sagely, "Lady too smart . . . no good!"

tjl said...

"Republicans have distracted blue-collar and lower-middle-class voters from their own true economic interests by hitting their cultural hot buttons, their identity and sexual fears"

And the Dems don't do this too? What about the coastal elites who wouldn't dream of doing something so culturally uncool as to vote Republican, despite the fact that their latte lifestyle is funded by investment income? The Dems do know how to hit the cultural hot buttons of people whose economic interests would suffer from the Dems' redistributionist social agenda.

Dave Schuler said...

I think it's at least worth entertaining that utilizing “a dispassionate mind that makes decisions by weighing the evidence, etc.” is a skill that is cultivated through practice and that the popular society does not encourage the practice of this virtue.

Pogo said...

Re: "a skill that is cultivated through practice and that the popular society does not encourage"

The problem is that this only works well for science. Determining the best way to cultivate plants, store food, or play music on a machine has a few definitive endpoints. (Even then, the goalposts move as science advances.) This kind of clarity is simply nonexistent for society.

How do we best address poverty? How should we educate kids? How much should we spend on it? How do we ensure and improve economic growth? How do we deal with criminals? How do we deal with groups and nations that mean us harm?

None of these have "final" answers. Most are ad hoc, requiring knowledge of essentially irrational human behavior and applying Machiavellian principles to advance one's interests, all the while trying to hold to some ethical/moral precepts.

People who presume there is definitive evidence about which a dispassionate mind can cogitate and resolve scare the holy hell out of me. People who think they have a dispassionate mind scare me even more.

A virtue it ain't.

Christy said...

that Republicans have distracted blue-collar and lower-middle-class voters from their own true economic interests

Do you find that Democratic leadership is much more likely to think of us in terms of class than we ourselves do? If we aren't rich now, most of us fully expect to be one day, don't we? How can appeal to class interest apply to us?

hdhouse said...

pick up a newsweek (or time for that matter) from 30 years ago at a yard sale. see how dumb they feel the readership has become.

this kinda tripe makes me ill. I don't even get to the content issues because all the rest looks like a dumbed down version of people magazine.

Paul Zrimsek said...

If we aren't rich now, most of us fully expect to be one day, don't we?

When and if you do get rich, you'll find out just how sincere the Democrats are about their premise that you ought to be voting your economic self-interest.

I'd go read the Newsweek article, but I've got to stay on the run if I don't want Manbearpig to get me.

Mindsteps said...

Ann:

Do you anticipate reading Weston's book?

George said...

Is this the Newsweek magazine whose current cover shouts...

181 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW NOW

?

The magazine that has on its cover photos of Jane Austen! Muhammad Ali! Barack! Osama! Jesus! T. Rex! A kitty! Tiger! John Lennon! Anne Hathaway! Saddam! And a cow!

Inside there's a 130 question quiz on global literacy, whatever that is. Where are the other 61 things I need to know. Where!

Sloanasaurus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sloanasaurus said...

Emotional reactions are often grounded in complete differences on the way things are viewed. For example, the author points out the abortion debate and wonders why people would support the government forcing a woman to have a child when she was raped.

However, pro-lifers are thinking about the child, not the woman. Thus, the author's criticism is misdirected. The people who argue over abortion are arguing over two different things. Take out emotion and you have equally compelling intellectual arguments from the child's point of view of living and from the mother's point of view of not being forced to have the child. In many ways abortion is not a left/right issue, it is a moral value issue. What moral value should we hold more precious: the freedom of the woman or the life of the child. Holding the value of freedom for the woman is more of a modern view, which is why it is rooted in the democratic party. In contrast, traditional views are more at home with the Republican party.

Appealing to emotion only works when two different sides hold a common value, for example arguing what the founders (i.e. John Adams) would do. If both sides view the founders as being godlike, then you can appeal to peoples emotions by trying to emulate the founders.

The liberal movement to discredit the founders by concentrating on their negative aspects was in fact an intellectual argument made in an attempt to wrestle with peoples emotions. If you can discredit the founders, then doing things like limiting free speech, or rewriting the constitution will be easier because there will be no traditional america to appeal to emotionally.

Fritz said...

"I had been on the run for three days and hadn't taken a shower. Looking at that photo would scare me too." Willie Horton commenting on his photo in the prison furlough political ad. Illogical policy with a perfect poster boy, rational.

Did Al Gore have to respond with a cynical attack on Bush? Having that DUI bombshell the weekend before the election did more to help Gore than a laundry list of attacks. It was an undisputed piece of evidence that triggered doubt in undecided voters, priceless.

Howard Dean in 6 words "George Bush is not my neighbor" told every Christian in Iowa that he did not understand the basic tenet of Christianity. Seems to me that voters are pretty rational.

This leftist red meat author is showing his hands, he doesn't trust people. It is clear Obama & Edwards are using his services, Cynic Inc. How did that call to Ann Coulter do for the Edwards campaign?

Zach said...

I may have brought this up before with reference to Gore, but he always reminds me a little of Robespierre (without the beheadings, obviously). There's a certain preening focus on personal virtue in both cases. Remember, Robespierre came up with the original Cult of Reason.

Many people are willing to enlist Reason as an ally of what they already believe. Few are willing or able to use it to work out what they should believe from first principles. It's not obvious that either party does this to a huge degree.

amba said...

Sloan:

You're smart! (But not evil.)

amba said...

You too, Zach!

Bruce Hayden said...

How did that call to Ann Coulter do for the Edwards campaign?

Actually, it seems to be doing about as well as expected. He hasn't really picked up in the polls, but there was an article yesterday that indicated that fund raising had picked up.

In other words, Edwards now seems to have, at least temporarily, given up on his "Two Americas" (the one he owns, and the other one), and is now basing his campaign on that Ann Coulter is mean to him.

In the end, of course, that is a strategy guaranteed to fail. Many in this country don't know who Ms. Coulter is, and how can you expect someone to survive as president, if they can't take being called maybe gay by someone on the other side, that even those of her political persuasion have often disowned.

But it is an emotional campaign aimed at a certain demographic, many of who react strongly to the mere mention of Ms. Coulter.

Too Cool for School said...

The problem is anti-terrorism. The republican solution is military, while the democratic solution relies upon intelligence, diplomacy and homeland defense. If we vote based on emotion (fear), republican wins. If we vote based on our brain, the democrats win.

And in the battle of emotion versus intellect, the intellect is winning if the 2006 congressional elections are any indication. Go brain.

Bruce Hayden said...

I, for one, have always found it hard to fathom why anyone would believe that people who were born to privilege could represent the lower classes.

Indeed, the idea that the Democratic elite represent the lower classes, the poor, weak, downtrodden, is by its very nature, ludicrous. Much of the Democratic leadership has never gone without anything in their lives, except in the case of Gore and Kerry, the presidency. Never worried about the next meal, how to cover the mortgage this month, etc.

And, yet, if we were to believe Newsweek, the voters should be following these people, and only don't because they are too emotional to do so.

Beth said...

Amba describes the Dems accurately as emotionally tone-deaf, and I likewise agree with Ann that the way they're using emotion to frame the appeal to reason.

But the rest of this thread, as it has developed, is a fine illustration of the conservative appeal to emotion--fear and fantasy. I particularly love the "one day I'll be rich, rich, rich!!!!" delusion. And the pro-lifer example nicely delineates the emotional appeals of right and left: the right loves that little zygote right up until it's born, when the left's nanny state impulses kick in.

Bruce Hayden said...

The problem is anti-terrorism. The republican solution is military, while the democratic solution relies upon intelligence, diplomacy and homeland defense. If we vote based on emotion (fear), republican wins. If we vote based on our brain, the democrats win.

That is just plain ludicrous, believing that if we were just nice, and did things the same way that we did when Saint William was in the White House, that all those nasty terrorists would just go away.

Seriously, I think that the above statement was one of the more emotionally charged ones I have heard, and is in line with the point made above that those on the left believe themselves smarter than those on the other side, that they are proud of that, and that is their emotional reason for their decisions.

Tim said...

"Madison Avenue has known this for decades. Democrats haven’t."

Indeed. There are lies, damned lies, and then there is convicting evidence of the lies:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63h_v6uf0Ao

Democrats mastered demagoguery decades ago. It just hasn't sold as well as they wish.

Internet Ronin said...

As H.L. Mencken wrote:

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.

Nuclear war, nuclear power, crime, drugs, immigration, Social Security, welfare, affirmative action, Medicare, abortion, universal health care, civil rights, global warming, gay marriage ...

It is a virtually endless list of easily documented emotional appeals by both political parties and their supporters, only occasionally interrupted by appeals to reason.

Bruce Hayden said...

But the rest of this thread, as it has developed, is a fine illustration of the conservative appeal to emotion--fear and fantasy. I particularly love the "one day I'll be rich, rich, rich!!!!" delusion. And the pro-lifer example nicely delineates the emotional appeals of right and left: the right loves that little zygote right up until it's born, when the left's nanny state impulses kick in.

Well, sorry that you don't believe that you will be able to improve your quality of life and economic standing. That must be very depressing.

But note all the emotional overtones in how Beth is phrasing her points. I find the way that she tries to phrase the abortion debate interesting. Instead of dwelling on the viable fetus, or pre-born baby, developed enough so show up and waive its arms on an ultrasound, which is where I am right now in my position on abortion, she dwells on the first couple of days, or weeks, when miscarriages are almost as likely as live births. Yes, to some extent, reductio ad absurdum, but more realistically, arguing an extreme point that is really irrelevant to most Americans.

Beth said...

Internet Ronin--great post. Now, have any examples of those "intermittent appeals to reason"? I'm sure they'll spark a memory when I see them but right now I'm hard-pressed to come up with any.

ricpic said...

The Party Of Resentment doesn't rely on emotions?

Jeff said...

Damn. Tim beat me to this!

emma said...

The Democrat Party parties hearty and warped emotions are what it's all about.

Too bad a few Republicans act the same way.

Ever been sucked into a "conservative" couple’s sick affair and tossed back and forth as a human football for their jollies? Ever try to ignore and forget them, only to be abused when they invoke your name online in a cleverly-rude way, and you’re not even a part of the conversation or “their” blog (and your friends catch it and tell you where to find the dig)? Ever see these same people moralize and preach about bad politics and the decline of civilization and then act like trash because “nobody’s perfect” or because they’re somehow exempt and anyway it’s cute when they do it and hurt others? Ever see a moody, manipulating nympho call a murdered woman a “loser” over and over on a blog?

Well, I have and it’s a bit much.

Zach said...

(To the tune of "Jesus Loves Me"

Reason loves me, this I know
For Obama tells me so
All my mindless prejudice
Is in fact analysis

Yes, Reason loves me
Yes, Reason loves me
Yes, Reason loves me
Obama tells me so

Here's my ballot neatly filled
All the D's inspire the world
I can hardly wait to see
Who will be the nominee

Yes, Reason loves me
Yes, Reason loves me
Yes, Reason loves me
Obama tells me so

John Stodder said...

Ever been sucked into a "conservative" couple’s sick affair and tossed back and forth as a human football for their jollies? Ever try to ignore and forget them, only to be abused when they invoke your name online in a cleverly-rude way, and you’re not even a part of the conversation or “their” blog (and your friends catch it and tell you where to find the dig)? Ever see these same people moralize and preach about bad politics and the decline of civilization and then act like trash because “nobody’s perfect” or because they’re somehow exempt and anyway it’s cute when they do it and hurt others? Ever see a moody, manipulating nympho call a murdered woman a “loser” over and over on a blog?

Joey, have you ever been in a cockpit before.

Have you ever seen a grown man naked?

Have you ever been in a Turkish prison?

Joey, do you like movies about gladiators?

Paul Zrimsek said...

Great minds think almost alike!

Ever been sucked into a "conservative" couple’s sick affair and tossed back and forth as a human football for their jollies?

Christmas, Ted, what does that mean to you? It was living hell. Do you know what it's like falling in the mud and getting kicked in the head with an iron boot? Of course you don't, no one does, that never happens. Sorry, Ted, that's a dumb question.

John Stodder said...

I've been a registered Democrat my whole voting life, although I vote more like an independent.

What drives me crazy is not that Democrats are "emotionally tone-deaf." It's that they are intellectually tone-deaf. The intellectual merit of the New Deal/Great Society policies -- as judged by their results -- collapsed sometime in the 1970s. The intellectual merit of the McGovern/Carter approach to foreign policy hit the shoals in the 1980s in what must be seen as a true side-by-side comparison. Carter, the man of peace, exacerbated the Cold War. Reagan, the saber-rattling hawk who so injudiciously called the USSR an "evil empire," ended the Cold War--peacefully.

Bill Clinton's success further proves the point. He abandoned Democratic economic orthodoxy, ended "welfare as we know it," promoted an expanding-pie economics, and thereby achieved his greatest success. His foreign policy was more conflicted, however, with the greater share of his advisors still attached to a Carteresque approach, and left office having accomplished very little to advance the US' position in the most challenging arenas, the Middle East and North Korea.

Is "a dispassionate mind that makes decisions by weighing the evidence and reasoning to the most valid conclusions" supposed to ignore this evidence? But that's what the Democratic party has been doing in the past five years, and what the so-called "reality based community" has been demanding of their followers in the netroots.

They don't even want their followers exposed to competing views, much less have to consider them "dispassionately." How else to explain the fact that conservatives quote the liberal New York Times all the time, but the left demands their followers shun "Faux News," and wants to use the power of the federal government to get talk radio hosts off the air?

There are plenty of "brain dead politics" on both sides of the partisan fence, as Bill Clinton once said. But for Democrats to slap the label "too smart to win" on themselves is not only pathetically vain, but a complete misdiagnosis.

amba said...

Go Bruce!! All these smart people!

amba said...

And Beth!!

TMink said...

2 kewl wrote: "intelligence, diplomacy and homeland defense."

Hmm, I thought the Democratic party was all upset about the faulty intelligence that led to our invasion of Iraq. And when you say diplomacy, you mean like the UN? As effective as that? And homeland defense, like not securing our borders?

The Republicans piss me off daily, but the thing about them and anti-terrorism is that they actually do things. Like killing bad guys. Killing terrorists is very effective anti-terrorism policy. So is supporting self-rule and capatilism in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Talking to terrorists has not produced any advances to our safety that I am aware of.

Trey

Fritz said...

Too Cool,
How self serving. When Edwards & Kerry mentioned Mary Cheney's sexual orientation, was that an intellectual argument?

B said...

HANDS DOWN, THIS IS THE MOST INTERESTING COMMENTS CONVERSATION ON AN ALTHOUSE POST THIS YEAR (and that's saying a lot!). Kudos to every poster above.

Fascinating. This stuff is gold.

Is it possible that ANYONE can take Drew Weston seriously?

Here's my question (and it does relate):

Years ago, in the 80's, I was selling food to 23 colleges in Southern California. A flush of money came into the California College and University system for a few years that even trickled down to allowing cafeterias and snack outlets to buy better quality food.

I was able to upgrade meats, cheeses, canned goods, etc, at each college during that time - most items to the level of quality purchased by higher end restaurants. And, because most of the cost increase was subsidized by state money, there was almost never a price increase to the customer (students and faculty).

Now, you would expect during that almost 4 year period of greatly increased quality that customer satisfaction would go through the roof.

Not one survey of "customer satisfaction" with any of the colleges' dining services showed any improvement during that period.

The best we(myself and college personnel) could come up with for a final explanation was that there is an overwhelming mindset about certain things, including that there is never going to be good camp food, good prison food, good college food, good school food, or good hospital food.

What's up with that?

By the way, Ann, how's the food on your campus?

Too Cool for School said...

"Killing terrorists is very effective anti-terrorism policy."

Keep holding on to that life raft!

2006 was a referendum on Iraq, not the Cold War, big government or any of the other issues cited by other posters. The democrats have the intellectual high ground in this regard, if only by virtue of their (late) opposition to the administration's policy.

John Stodder said...

The problem is anti-terrorism. The republican solution is military, while the democratic solution relies upon intelligence, diplomacy and homeland defense. If we vote based on emotion (fear), republican wins. If we vote based on our brain, the democrats win.

The problem is, this is how you Carteresque guys see everything! Every foreign policy challenge = negotiate, don't use force, don't threaten force.

Ever hear this one? "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds."

You're also making a gross factual error here. The current Administration is completely reliant on both intelligence and diplomacy in the war against terrorists. Part of diplomacy is knowing that your diplomatic partner might have to denounce you publicly while providing invaluable assistance behind the scenes.

It is not a sign of your superior intelligence that you take the anti-US rhetoric of some leaders in Europe, Asia and the Muslim world at face value. Where it really counts, there isn't really such a thing as "America's loss of prestige in the world." That's just boob bait.

You don't see that? You don't see that and yet you believe you are smarter than everyone else?

Here's another quote for you: “Nations have no permanent friends and no permanent enemies. Only permanent interests." --Benjamin Disraeli. The US' supposedly lost allies share our interest in suppressing radical Islam. They, like we, are facing a fierce jihad that poses (in Europe anyway) a much greater existential threat to them than it does to us. They will choose to work with us, despite the short-term domestic political difficulties, so long as they think we can help them. Which we have been.

Jeff said...

Surrender is an "intellectual high ground"?

B said...

Too Cool -

You keep holding on to that view so tightly it seems like you're afraid that a rational discussion of Iraq options will destroy you.

If you're confident of your rationale, why the emotional spin put-down of the opposing side?

Pogo said...

One of the most "reasonable" societies ever to be arise from the human mind, after giving the problem considerable "scientific" and historical thought, was the implementation of Marx's socialism. Few theories have had greater analysis or had more pages written about them. Multiple nations gave its precepts a try.

Total 20th century cost in human lives: 100 million (not counting the associated wars).

So much for "reason", and 'voting based on our brain'.

An Edjamikated Redneck said...

I love the idea that the Dems have not used enough emotion in their appeals for support. I have never seen anything but emotion in any argument with a Lefty, and when their 'feelings' don't sway you to their side, its because YOU "aren't intelligent enough to understand the issue- Trust me that I'm right".

When you still do not agree, the name calling and profanity starts; petulant children throwing a tantrum.

I have to go back to the old saw about if your not a liberal at 20, you have no heart and a conservative at thirty, you have no brain. How many lefties quit thinking when they left college?

Luckyoldson said...

well, based on the comments here, i guess it will be a runaway republican victory in the 2008 election.

and...based on the fine work and results the bush administration (over the past 7 years) and the republican congress (over the past 12 years have provided...why not?

how much better could it get??

what a hoot.

John Stodder said...

well, based on the comments here, i guess it will be a runaway republican victory in the 2008 election.

Well...that's probably the safer bet right now. I don't see the Republicans winning back either house of congress, but the presidency? The polls certainly suggest the Democrats are not in particularly good shape.

Paradoxically, Bush has turned out to be so bad that his negative coattails will probably be gone by next year. The voters seem to have vented the full measure of their rage on Bush in 2006. Now they see him as a lame duck, irrelevant on every issue except Iraq, where he is seen to have finally gotten things on track, hopefully not too late.

Who is running to keep the Bush legacy going? Nobody, and it doesn't seem to be hurting any of the Reep candidates. Bush 41 ran as a third term of Reagan -- and if he hadn't done that, he couldn't have won. No one is expecting Guiliani, Romney or McCain to pay Bush 43 that kind of respect now.

Internet Ronin said...

Your selective reading glasses suit you so well, Lucky.

Internet Ronin said...

John, amba overlooked you when passing out kudos, so I want to say how much I enjoy your comments.

Is "a dispassionate mind that makes decisions by weighing the evidence and reasoning to the most valid conclusions" supposed to ignore this evidence?

Unfortunately, yes. At times, it seems if it is a prerequisite.

Ever hear this one? "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds."

Yes, but little minds are incapable of detecting the pattern.

Bush 41 ran as a third term of Reagan

And once he forgot that, he lost.

Luckyoldson said...

redneck blathers: "How many lefties quit thinking when they left college?"

did you even go to college?

Christy said...

Ann, wasn't Antonio Damasio pretty clear that all our thinking goes through an emotional filter? And that we cannot make good choices when that part of the brain is damaged?

Anyone else remember a late 1970s issue of Newsweek devoted to cocaine and what a great drug it was? Just me? Okay, maybe I misremember. But it was hard to take the magazine seriously after that.

Luckyoldson said...

ronin,
"selective reading glasses?"

this is like republican suckfest on steroids.

puppet bush and master cheney's "coattails" will drag the republicans right down the toilet...and based on the horrible job they've done as the "majority," that's exactly where they belong.

Internet Ronin said...

As I said, Lucky, you don selective reading glasses while here. You think everyone who disagrees with you is a Republican, voted for George W. Bush, and supports his conduct of the war.

It seems to me you would not recognize an independent thought if it bit you in the ass. Then again, there's may be a rational explanation for that, what with you being a homophobe and all.

Luckyoldson said...

Christy said..."Anyone else remember a late 1970s issue of Newsweek devoted to cocaine and what a great drug it was?"

and, according to an article last week...its price has plummeted in the 7 years bush has been running the "war on drugs."

weird, huh?

John Stodder said...

ronin,
"selective reading glasses?"

this is like republican suckfest on steroids.


Ooh, sounds like one of those intellectual types. Lucky us! Please continue to enlighten us, oh "sun!"

Dewave said...

Democrat ideas have traditionally appealed to emotions rather than reason and logic.

It's a 'feel good' style of politics.

That's why young people, who are illogical bundles of emotion, skew heavily democratic instead of republican.

Internet Ronin said...

Everyone who comments here at Althouse contributes something, Lucky. Even you. Experience shows that whenever you appear, the intellectual caliber of the discussion drops so precipitously as to render it virtually meaningless. Given your track record of lame name-calling, it is tempting to peg your arrested development at the third grade level, but I understand that third graders are more mature than they once were.

Luckyoldson said...

ronin,
if you actually think the vast majority of the people here are "independents"...you need your head examined.

the postings today don't reflect anything of the sort.

Luckyoldson said...

ronin says: "...Given your track record of lame name-calling, it is tempting to peg your arrested development at the third grade level, but I understand that third graders are more mature than they once were."

well, thank goodness you didn't lower yourself to "name-calling."

you're a prince among men.

what a hoot.

Seven Machos said...

What I find interesting is that the left-liberal posters here are mostly relying on insult in their appeals here. Take our favorite insulter, Lucky. How many times is he going to ask people if they graduated from college? And what is that but an appeal to intellectual snobbery. I won't rehash the nastier insults.

There is a segment of the population that believes that anyone who disagrees with them is irrational and stupid. This belief is utterly irrational itself.

Bruce Hayden said...

2006 was a referendum on Iraq, not the Cold War, big government or any of the other issues cited by other posters. The democrats have the intellectual high ground in this regard, if only by virtue of their (late) opposition to the administration's policy.

I was initially going to respond sarcastically to that, but decided to ask what you thought the Administration's policy was right now in Iraq, and, in particular, what its current strategy was, and how far along in implementing it they were. Be as specific as you can, as I will assume skipping over details indicates a lack of familiarity thereof.

Seven Machos said...

What was 1994 a referendum on?

Bruce Hayden said...

A large chunk of the Republican party is now in revolt - not over Iraq, but rather primarily over immigration, but also over corruption, pork, ear marks, etc. It was a bit discouraging that it appeared that three Republican senators are trading their votes on the immigration bill for new immigration facilities - in St. George, UT and Fairbanks, AK.

Pogo said...

Re: "How about an ad showing a parade of Arab-looking men walking into a gun store..."

Is this a serious proposal for a Democrat to run? The Diversity party? I wonder what Muslim U.S. Representative Keith Ellison (MN; Fifth Congressional District) would say?

Could this guy be any more tone deaf to his own party?

P.S. Despite the insults found here, I still find it a valuable experiment for certain cities to provide computer training for the developmentally disabled.

AJ Lynch said...

IR said:

"John, amba overlooked you when passing out kudos, so I want to say how much I enjoy your comments."

That goes for me too John. You are consistently a measured and reasoned commenter who adds very thoughful perspectives.

Bruce Hayden said...

Well, it looks like the Republicans may have a chance in the next elections - the immigration bill has again gone down to defeat.

The problem with the bill, at least for me, was not its goal, which I somewhat agree with, but rather, how the Senate, in particular, was trying to enact it. It had been created in darkness, and the Senate leadership was preventing most amendments to it, as well as trying to limit debate. To this day, most of us don't know what is in it, in its entirety, and kept finding out more negative details as time went on.

As a Republican, I figure that is how the Democrats do business. But the standard is, IMHO, higher for Republicans, at least for me.

Of course, then you have a President who ignored most of his party in this matter. Someone suggested today that he has lost a lot of his support for the war due to his intransigence over immigration. Maybe, we shall see.

Internet Ronin said...

if you actually think the vast majority of the people here are "independents"...you need your head examined.

Lucky, if you think that's what I wrote, you need to get your eyes checked.

you're a prince among men.

No, Lucky, I'm just imitating your posting style.

what a hoot.

No, Lucky, it isn't a hoot. It is boring and juvenile, like you, so I'll stop soon. You can't help it, so you won't, I'm sure.

Seven Machos said...

Immigration is vastly unpopular. If the United States would only build a wall, mass amnesty would be viable. The point is to stop illegal immigration, not reward it.

Is this argument too reasonable and, therefore, likely to fail?

Luckyoldson said...

Internet Ronin said..."It seems to me you would not recognize an independent thought if it bit you in the ass."

here's a selection of today's "independent" postings:

1. That Dems are emotionally tone-deaf?

2. Democrats deal in self-flattery, claiming to be intelligent, informed, and nuanced.

3. The Dems have trouble reaching people who feel good by thinking of themselves as good, not necessarily smart.

4. When and if you do get rich, you'll find out just how sincere the Democrats are about their premise that you ought to be voting your economic self-interest.

5. The liberal movement to discredit the founders by concentrating on their negative aspects was in fact an intellectual argument made in an attempt to wrestle with peoples emotions. (except for the fact that the founding fathers were liberals))

6. This leftist red meat author is showing his hands, he doesn't trust people. It is clear Obama & Edwards are using his services, Cynic Inc.

7. Indeed, the idea that the Democratic elite represent the lower classes, the poor, weak, downtrodden, is by its very nature, ludicrous.
(right.)

8. The Democrat Party parties hearty and warped emotions are what it's all about.

9. Democrats mastered demagoguery decades ago. It just hasn't sold as well as they wish.

10. How self serving. When Edwards & Kerry mentioned Mary Cheney's sexual orientation, was that an intellectual argument? (but of course, cheney himself is against same sex marriage...that's okay)

11. The problem is, this is how you Carteresque guys see everything! Every foreign policy challenge = negotiate, don't use force, don't threaten force. (yeah, that iraqi thing is working out just fine...duh.)

12. I have never seen anything but emotion in any argument with a Lefty, and when their 'feelings' don't sway you to their side, its because YOU "aren't intelligent enough to understand the issue. (yeah, bush = intellect...clinton = emotion)

you sure can't get any more "independent" than that...

Luckyoldson said...

seven:
speaking of illegal immigration...the real problem is dealing with those who are already HERE:

do the math:

if we use the 12,000,000 number...and deport 100,000 a month...it will only take us 10 years. (use the 20,000,000 number and it will take 16+ years)..and of course, that's based on NO NEW ILLEGALS getting into the country...GFL.)

now...exactly who will oversee this massive campaign? who will do the grunt work? how much it will cost? and of course...who will support the ("legal" american mothers and kids left behind?) while the breadwinner saves up the $5,000 to get back in, who pays for their lodging, food, schooling, and medical expenses?

want to take a guess?

Seven Machos said...

As I have explained to Lucky before, I seriously doubt that anyone here listens to conservative AM talk radio regularly. I don't. I don't even have an AM radio. No one watches the bloviating on cable television from either side, either.

Also, the tone of this discussion has been wonderful and the substance insightful, except from Lucky, who can only insult. Lucky cannot argue without being a jerk. This is infantile.

Anyway, let's consider these claims:

1. Independent thought -- what Ronin actually said -- by silly leftist academic.

2. Independent thought

3. Independent thought

4. Independent thought

5. Independent thought

6. Independent thought

7. Independent thought

8. Independent thought

9. Independent thought

10. Independent thought

11. Independent thought

12. Independent thought

Seven Machos said...

Lucky -- I think any fair reading of my post suggests that I contend that there is massive support for a wall and, after the wall is built, there will be no popular movement to deport.

You don't seem to read real well, so it's not shocking that you were uable to understand this.

Internet Ronin said...

want to take a guess?

A lot of talk but little action other than the same kinds of things that have been done in the past. In other words, a whole lot of nothing.

John Stodder said...

Ronin, aj:

Thank you. I'm honored. You provide great commentary here as well, so it's quite a compliment.

John

Pogo said...

Re: "What’s the point of fighting terrorists abroad if we’re going to arm them over here?"

Not a bad argument, one I'd like to discuss. But seriously, is there anyone among the Democrats who believes that we are in a fight against terrorism? Can they explain who they think is behind the threats and attacks? Can they outline a plan of action that targets these groups, as opposed to restricting everyone at airports and restricting the weapons we need to protect ourselves from them?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

I guess Lucky is still on vacation.

:-)

Luckyoldson said...

pogo says: "But seriously, is there anyone among the Democrats who believes that we are in a fight against terrorism?"

and yet another "independent" thought.

Luckyoldson said...

wittle bunny,
own my own company.

make my own hours.

that's what being a liberal will do for you.

*and thanks again for thinking of me...but you're beginning to sound somewhat obsessive.

John Stodder said...

Geez, Lucky, are you suggesting that anyone who mentions the Democratic party critically is by definition not an independent?

I'm a Democrat, and I am frustrated to the point of rage at the current direction of my party. Are you with the netroots types who think my responsibility is to keep my mouth shut and stick to the party line -- or else I'm a traitor?

That's fine, I guess. Enforced political discipline is a strategy parties sometimes deploy. But don't confuse it with an appeal to "reason."

Luckyoldson said...

seven,
yes, i understand the term; "independent thought."

are you saying the postings i provided represent "independent thought?"

*and as for the wall...get real.

Beth said...

Well, sorry that you don't believe that you will be able to improve your quality of life and economic standing. That must be very depressing.

Bruce, I don't have the delusion that I'll be rich. Comfortably middle class? Absolutely. And so it's sensible for me to support policies that recognize the needs of the middle class, where is logically where most of us end up economically, and help us maintain a good quality of life and economic standing. Fantasizing about becoming rich leads people to ignore real issues like affordable health care, effective public education, better regulation of insurance companies and so on (it's okay, I'll pay for it all myself when I'm RICH!)

You completely misread my comment on the abortion issue. I have no idea what you're on about there.

Beth said...

Talking to terrorists has not produced any advances to our safety that I am aware of.

Northern Ireland benefited from talking. I don't propose that talking was the only factor there, only that it has mattered.

Luckyoldson said...

john says: "Geez, Lucky, are you suggesting that anyone who mentions the Democratic party critically is by definition not an independent?"

NO...that's not what isaid.

i said that the predominate view on this blog...is CONSERVATIVE...and certainly anti-liberal/democrat.

if you think this is some kind of "independent thought" driven think tank...you're dreaming.

*how many of the postings i provided would represent your definition of "independent thought"...opposed to "conservative thought?"

Seven Machos said...

If only people would stop irrationally fantasizing about money and care about the real issues. You know, real issues. Like the ones you care about. Those are the real issues.

What's the matter with these stupid people? All they care about is issues that are important to them, not the real issues which are, of course, important to you.

Luckyoldson said...

Beth said..."Talking to terrorists has not produced any advances to our safety that I am aware of. Northern Ireland benefited from talking. I don't propose that talking was the only factor there, only that it has mattered."

are you sure you're on the right blog?

Seven Machos said...

How are independent and conservative mutually exclusive terms? Are independent and liberal terms that go together?

Tully said...

Read “The Political Brain” and you’ll understand why Westen is suddenly a very, very popular guy in Democratic campaign circles.

Right up there with Lakoff and Frank in the self-delusion pantheon, no doubt. Wow, what an achievement.

Luckyoldson said...

seven,
when you say: "the tone of this discussion has been wonderful and the substance insightful, except from Lucky, who can only insult...."

which of the following comments is the most "wonderful" and "insightful?"

*Dems are emotionally tone-deaf?

*Democrats deal in self-flattery, claiming to be intelligent, informed, and nuanced.

*The Dems have trouble reaching people who feel good by thinking of themselves as good, not necessarily smart.

*Indeed, the idea that the Democratic elite represent the lower classes, the poor, weak, downtrodden, is by its very nature, ludicrous.

*The Democrat Party parties hearty and warped emotions are what it's all about.

*Democrats mastered demagoguery decades ago. It just hasn't sold as well as they wish.

*I have never seen anything but emotion in any argument with a Lefty, and when their 'feelings' don't sway you to their side, its because YOU "aren't intelligent enough to understand the issue.

rose colored glasses...

Luckyoldson said...

Seven Machos asks: "How are independent and conservative mutually exclusive terms? Are independent and liberal terms that go together?"

conservative: an adherent or advocate of political conservatism bcapitalized : a member or supporter of a conservative political party

independent: one that is independent; especially often capitalized : one that is not bound by or definitively committed to a political party

liberal: one who is open-minded or not strict in the observance of orthodox, traditional, or established forms or ways

Seven Machos said...

Criticism and insult are not the same. Anyone who cannot understand this is not worth anyone else's time.

Beth said...

Yeah, Seven, real issues, meaning issues about which we can contemplate practical solutions. Your misreading of my comment to mean that I'm saying real issues are only the ones I care about is, typically for you, specious. You know full well I'm criticizing the fantasy that we don't need government to address economic needs because we can all "fully expect" to be RICH, RICH, RICH someday!

Seven Machos said...

we don't need government to address economic needs

A lot of people would call this statement true. The fact that you believe that government intervention like like "affordable health care" and "effective public education" suggests that you are the person fantasizing. The government cannot reduce the price of a good. Price is a function of markets. This is why you immediately see shortages whenever government intervention is introduced, and severe shortages where socialist policy is introduced.

As far as regulation of insurance companies, it is difficult to see how insurance companies could be further regulated.

There is nothing wrong with wanting to be rich and left alone from government intervention. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are laudable goals, despite what our would-be leftist overlords wish.

Luckyoldson said...

seven,
so the comments i posted weren't "insults," they were merely "criticisms?"

as in, the democrats...

*are emotionally tone-deaf

*deal in self-flattery...

*think of themselves as good, not necessarily smart...

*parties hearty and warped emotions are what it's all about...

*(represent) demagoguery...

*anything but emotion in any argument with a Lefty...

now why would anyone consider any of these statements as an "insult?"

Luckyoldson said...

seven say: "As far as regulation of insurance companies, it is difficult to see how insurance companies could be further regulated."

you are truly...out of your mind.

Luckyoldson said...

hey seven,
where do you think those interstate highways you use came from?

SGT Ted said...

I can't think of any lib/left Democrat policy advocacy that is anything BUT appeal to emotions and short on facts.

Want to secure the borders and enforce existing immigration laws? You're a BIGOT RACIST!

Don't like gay Marriage? HOMOPHOBE!!

Oppose Affirmative Action? CRYPTO-RACIST!!

Gun owner? REDNECK PSYCHO!!

Want to own an SUV? EARTH RAPIST!!

Don't beleive Global Warming is settled science? YOU'RE LIKE A HOLOCOST DENIER!!!

Don't agree with wealth redistribution? SELFISH GREEDY PIG!!!

Think that spying on your enemies in a time of war is appropriate? FASCIST!!

Think we ought to develop our own natural resources with more Domestic oil drilling or building nuclear power plants? EARTH RAPER!!!!

I could go on...

Seven Machos said...

Lucky asks: are interstate highways "affordable health care," "effective public education," or "regulation of insurance companies"?

I must conclude that interstate highways fall into none of these categories.

Anthony said...

This fetish leftists have with their own supposed intellect isn't anything new, it's the same self-serving crap they've been pushing for decades. It's mostly just a prelude to installing themselves as benevolent dictators since, obviously, we poor folk are entirely unable to govern ourselves.

Luckyoldson said...

speaking of logical, realistic republicans...and having the guts to do the right thing:

Bruce Fein, an associate deputy attorney general under President Ronald Reagan, accused the Vice President of having made “monarchical claims” on power.

Fein, a self-identified conservative, follows up on these concerns and explicitly calls for the impeachment of Dick Cheney.

In grasping and exercising presidential powers, Cheney has dulled political accountability and concocted theories for evading the law and Constitution that would have embarrassed King George III.

The most recent invention we know of is the vice president’s insistence that an executive order governing the handling of classified information in the executive branch does not reach his office because he also serves as president of the Senate. In other words, the vice president is a unique legislative-executive creature standing above and beyond the Constitution.

The House judiciary committee should commence an impeachment inquiry. As Alexander Hamilton advised in the Federalist Papers, an impeachable offense is a political crime against the nation. Cheney’s multiple crimes against the Constitution clearly qualify.

Fein presents quite an indictment, describing multiple “crimes,” including Cheney’s role in creating military commissions, initiating torture policies, authorizing legally-dubious “signing statements,” engineering the warrantless domestic surveillance program, and generally usurping the power of the presidency outside the standards of the 25th Amendment.

well??

Pogo said...

Beth,
Re: "we can all "fully expect" to be RICH"
Without doubt, many many people still want to keep the opportunity to better their station, and the best hope for this remains with a less-fettered market. Slow gains and savings over decades turn people into 'the relatively well-off', not rich by US standards, but richer than any other people in the world, and richer than most humans in recorded history.

People still want to come here because those same opportunities are lacking in their homelands. Economic and social mobility are still quite possible here.

At the same time, I understand the desire to protect ourselves against the vagaries of nature, bad luck in business, disability, and old age. There are ways to insure oneself against such losses, but those methods that seek to do by hamstringing the economy end up making us all worse off.

Luckyoldson said...

seven,
the federal gov't.

you know...the u.s. highway system?

or do you think the local municipalities oversee and fund the maintainence and construction?

Seven Machos said...

I have not argued for the abolition of the federal government.

I think Althouse should institute a simple poll test.

Luckyoldson said...

anthony,
yeah, it's those damn freewheeling, liberals who make up most of the dictatorships around the world.

don't you remember how wild, crazy and "benevolent" saddam was?

what a hoot.

Luckyoldson said...

seven says: "The government cannot reduce the price of a good. Price is a function of markets."

you must be referring to the government subsidies for farmers...right?

or, hey...how about tariffs?

geeeezzzz...

Luckyoldson said...

sgt,
boy...talk about laying out the republican agenda...

good work, dude.

Luckyoldson said...

wittle dust bunny,
just wanted to let you know i'm on my way to play a round of golf.

stay in touch.

Seven Machos said...

Lucky -- Interestingly, both of the examples you cite are examples where a government rule makes prices artificially high. Of course, a government can do that; governments are very good at it. Illicit drugs, higher education, and milk are all priced higher than they otherwise would be because of government regulation.

As far as Saddam, he was no free marketeer. No one would seriously argue that. Here are some leftist tyrants, just off the top of my head: Stalin, Mao, Chavez, Kim Il Jung, Castro. Ayatollah Khomeini was a darling of the French left during his exile. I won't violate Godwin's Law by mentioning the leader of the National Socialists.

Mindsteps said...

Ann:

Could you clarify what you think is ridiculous....Newsweek's conclusions, Weston's book, both?

I read the article, however I have not read Weston's book. If Newsweek's digest version of Weston's book is complete and accurate, then I am somewhat letdown by Weston. I tend to be turned off by material that is overly partisan. As a result, his book is low on my priority of readings (and I have next to no time to read, other than say, blogs and those really indepth (?) USA today articles). I know I pay a price by distancing myself from books written by partisan authors. By rejecting highly partisan works, I probably lose out on the insights of some excellent thinkers. I will add that to the list of things I must work on.

Weston has conducted consierable research on personality development and disorders, attempting to operationalize some of Freud's and later analysts ideas for the purposes of conducting empirical research, and investigated the relationships between psychodynamic constructs and neurobiological functioning (I have learned from some of his work on the stability and modifiability of personality, especially during adolescence).

He was also instrumental in the development of a new psychological classificatory scheme relying on both psychodynamic theory and science.

Ann, you could do alot worse then to run your Freudian Clinton analysis by Weston. If he endorses your interpretations it would go a long way toward establishing some credibility for your psychological chops.

I wonder what prompted him to make politics such an important and visible part of his professional life and I wonder how effective he will be?

Beth said...

Pogo, I think we're basically on the same page, with some variance on where we see regulation being good. I'm trying to understand the "net neutrality" issue right now, for example, and it seems to me that the non-regulation side of that debate will result in a more expensive, less free internet -- in economic and speech terms. The whole "invisible hand" part of the free market vision is a farce. It's invisible because it isn't there. We regulate ourselves, and our the realm of our markets, all the time, the trick is in how and to what extent. I chafe under too many restrictions on my personal freedom, but I don't object to having to meet professional standards in order to keep being paid by the taxpayers of Louisiana, for example.

I think the fantasy that it's better to dream about being rich than to make sure a certain social safety net exists is the capitalist version of the opiate of the people.

Beth said...

are you sure you're on the right blog?

Lucky, what does that mean? I read lots of blogs, so there's no right blog for me, per se. I come here because there are some people whose comments I like to read, and whose company I enjoy. There are others I enjoy jousting with, even if I think we're pretty much thumbing our noses at one another much of the time.

Palladian said...

Lucky, you may have missed my comment to you...

How many discussions is Lucky going to ruin? I know it's hard to ignore him, considering that in a thread of 113 comments, 21.2 percent of them are his, but please try. I'm interested in reading the other comments and I'm tired of trying to fish the good comments out of the sewer.

Pogo said...

Re: "invisible hand" part of the free market vision is a farce. It's invisible because it isn't there."

I think many economists would argue that your next statement is the invisible hand, in the form of spontaneously self-organized and self-directed activities (i.e. "We regulate ourselves")designed to maximize our interests (not just our monetary profit). In this manner, as Bastiat noted, "Paris gets fed" every day, despite not a single government official decreeing it be done, or how.

And I fully agree that the trick is in how and to what extent. I fall farther on the side of rejecting the wisdom of government intervention than when I was 20. But I understand whence the impulse.

Steven said...

When Democrats say things like:

"Well, the Bush Administration's warrantless wiretaps aren't actually as big a deal as the LBJ administration's, because they're more limited in scope, and so are not an especially egregious threat to American rights. Yet…"

and

"Certainly, the Jose Padilla case is a lot less dangerous a precedent than that set by FDR in Ex parte Quirin, but…"

and

"You know, signing statements aren't actually that big a deal, especially compared to precedents like Lincoln suspending habeas corpus and ignoring Supreme Court decisions saying he couldn't. However…"

and

"Given the first sentence of Article II, the executive is actually unitary; what the Bush administration is overlooking is the legitimate rights of Congress under Article I, section 8, which…"

Then I'll believe that the Democrats are appealing to reason.

Instead, I look at the out-and-out scaremongering the Left does about how Bush is an imminent threat to American democracy, and, well…

fanofalthouse said...

Palladian,

I think Lucky may have reading comprehension issues. I was writing a moderately sarcastic comment to 7-M on a topic that Lucky and I probably agree about when Lucky called me a moron. He seems to be from the "Shoot first and ask questi ... Shoot first and ask questi ... Shoot first" school of internetting.

dix said...

Seems pretty obvious to me that liberals are the thinking rational ones. People that make their living by using reason and rational thought like engineers and businessmen are overwhelmingly liberal while the true hardcore conservatives come from fields heavy in emotion such as artists, actors and human service workers.

Chip Ahoy said...

All of my friends, all of them without exception, used hard sell emotional appeal and repel in order to influence my opinion and my one single vote.

Something inherent about Bush sent them feral. For the first time in my life I heard things like, "In my heart I know this is wrong," uttered emphatically and melodramatically. My answer, "Very well then, vote with your heart." I've had guests barge in and deliver high octane Michael Moore screeds, diatribes of one liners they memorized and collected into a verbal list that defied rational discussion. Like a catalog of grievances that gets mulled until it's delivered by rote all the way through making every discussion exactly one degree of separation from the index to that catalog. Rather like drunks do.

fanofalthouse said...

dix,

You're right. All the scientists are a bunch of liberals, too. Bill Gates? Warren Buffett? Total Democrats.

The Exalted said...

dont you ever get tired of writing generalized nonsense about "the left"? reciting lists of "leftist tyrants" advances a point, really?

as to this:

Seven Machos said...
Lucky -- I think any fair reading of my post suggests that I contend that there is massive support for a wall and, after the wall is built, there will be no popular movement to deport.



don't the polls show the opposite?

Kirk said...

Bruce,

"waive its arms on an ultrasound"

Are you trying to sneak Thalidomide into the discussion for some reason?

Luckyoldson said...

shot 102.

amba said...

I had to leave the building before John arrived (my last post & his first one crossed in the mail), so thanks for taking over the kudos, IR and aj!

Luckyoldson said...

seven,
have you discussed your theory with the u.s. steel industry?

Luckyoldson said...

The Exalted said..."don't the polls show the opposite?"

not HIS polls.

Luckyoldson said...

Palladian said..."Lucky, you may have missed my comment to you..."

i did...and i apologize.

i finally read it (and made plenty of copies) and i found it insightful, incredibly disingenuous, honest, straight to the point, non-racile, a tad homophoebic, but still...humble and something i'll never forget.

p.s. my mom read it and wants to meet you.

*god bless the universe for having you. (and i mean OUR god)

Luckyoldson said...

circumventing the "pack"...a typo:

non-racile

non-racial

my bad...

Palladian said...

"...a tad homophoebic"

I'm a homophobic queer! Who knew?!

Luckyoldson said...

hey, CHIPPER:
are you and jane dating? belong to the "i think i'm a writer club?"

pontification is fun if whoever's doing the pontificating is actually saying something.

*and i think "repel" is a verb.

geeezzz.

Luckyoldson said...

palladin,
the entire screed was...meant in jest? (as in "disingenuous"..."honest")

familair with the term?

read it again.

Hattie said...

You read Newsweek? Ridiculous.

Internet Ronin said...

No, Palladian, you aren't a homophobic queer. (But you and we already knew that.) Lucky, however, does seem to be a homophobe. He appears to enjoy projecting his irrelevant latent fantasies on to others in the midst of conversations. He tends to do it at night. Perhaps it helps him deal with his dreams.

Beth said...

Palladian, I believe it means you have a fear of women named Phoebe. That's not uncommon, and there are effective treatments. Unfortunately, they involve being strapped to a chair with your eyelids taped open while an endless loop of "Friends" episodes unfurls.

Luckyoldson said...

internet,
are you really this dumb?

Pogo said...

Beth's almost right.

I think it means either "fear the Phoebes who dress the same", or else "fear the men who dress like Phoebe".

But then my greek derivations are a bit rusty. It might instead be referring to the Titan daughters of Uranus and Gaia. Uranus? Nope. Not going there.

But it's quite possible he spells as well as he golfs and reasons, which is inexactly and with a wicked slice, and he really meant "hebephrenic" (disorganized schizophrenia), which makes sense, given the contextual clues.

Internet Ronin said...

Beth: *LOL!!!* (BTW, I'm still working on those appeals to reason you asked about earlier - if and when I finally find one, you'll be the first to know. ;-)

Lucky: No. Are you?

Pogo: Keep that up and you are going to get another lecture, you know. "Hebephrenia" sounds like an interesting subject - thanks for the tip!

LoafingOaf said...

In any event, that's the Thomas Frank argument -- in What's the Matter With Kansas? -- that Republicans have distracted blue-collar and lower-middle-class voters from their own true economic interests by hitting their cultural hot buttons, their identity and sexual fears.

I don't know much about Kansas, having never been there. I haven't voted for Democrats in awhile now for two reasons.

1. At the national level they seem to be trying to pretend Islamist jihad is some invention of the Bush administration while I believe it may prove to be the Nazism of our time.

2. At the local level I am witnessing the death of a once major city - Cleveland, OH - almost entirely run by Democrats. While Cleveland does not have car bombs going off all over the place, in every other respect it has the look and feel of a warzone. I cannot understand why Democrats such as Stephanie Tubbs Jones and Dennis Kucinich run all over the country (Kucinich running for Prez yet again, where he might get 3 votes) while the city they represent is turning into an almost complete sh*thole warzone and ghost town. I saw photographs of the Kurdish area of Iraq in Vanity Fair not a few issues back and it actually looked nicer and more on the rise than Cleveland.

So, while I don't much like the GOP, I can't imagine voting for a Democrat any time soon.

Fen said...

Democrats... have gone wrong by relying only on rational argument.

*holds Lucky up by the nape of his neck *

game set match fen

Fen said...

The republican solution is military, while the democratic solution relies upon intelligence, diplomacy and homeland defense

Uh-huh... and just WHAT is the "democrat solution" again?

Pogo said...

Re: and just WHAT is the "democrat solution" [to jihadi terrorism] again?

It's um, hey look over there, it's illegal immigration amnesty! And over there, it's national health care! Free at the point of use! And there! Bush crony indictments! See?

Luckyoldson said...

pogo and fen-fen...back together.

it brings tears of pure joy to my eyes just thinking about it.

Pogo said...

For the last time, LOS, I will not date you.

Internet Ronin said...

Pogo, no need to worry about that. Lucky is afraid that you want to date him. He likes to do his gay-baiting schtick once the comments die down and he thinks not too many people are looking.

Fen said...

The republican solution is military, while the democratic solution relies upon intelligence, diplomacy and homeland defense

No, the republican solution relies on all four, although they are weak on homeland defense [although the Left's lies about "domestic" survelliance and constant harping re habeus for illegal combatants doesn't help much]

I do find it hysterical that you attach Democrats to diplomacy. Diplomacy is ineffective if its not backed by force. Since the war started, you guys on the left have telegraphed your appeasement weakness to the Enemy. To the extent that Iran & Syria will never take a democrat administration seriously.

The Left's constant caterwauling and unwillingness to stick by hard decisions has rendered any future diplomatic initiatives ineffective. Nice going idiots.

Thorley Winston said...

It is not a sign of your superior intelligence that you take the anti-US rhetoric of some leaders in Europe, Asia and the Muslim world at face value. Where it really counts, there isn't really such a thing as "America's loss of prestige in the world." That's just boob bait.

Good point, IMO for all of the talk about America’s supposed “loss of prestige” in the world that the Left loves to trot out the actual facts suggest something different. In Great Britain, Australia, and Japan (three of our closest allies in Iraq) pro-US governments were returned to power. In Germany, Canada, and France (three countries who have publicly been our most ardent critics) the voters replaced governments that were probably the most ardently opposed diplomatically to the United States with new leaders who campaigned on strengthening ties with the United States.

Dr Zen said...

For a "moderate", this lady sure does talk some smack about liberals.