October 1, 2008

"If I were dictator, which I always aspire to be..."

McCain humor. Do you find it funny?

59 comments:

erniecu73 said...

Definitely not his best material. And the geeks at ThinkProgress should not take it seriously either.

I thought his quip about being "a bit tied up" during Woodstock was pretty good.

Simon said...

Not funny. But not to be taken as seriously as those po-faced anoraks at TP.

Can Ben Armbruster explain to us how he justifies putting quotation marks around a phrase that is not in fact a quote?

knox said...

The comments at that link are what's funny.

Synova said...

I don't think it was a *joke*, or he'd have paused for the funny.

But of course he doesn't really aspire to be a dictator, but who doesn't ever think about the difference between the answer you know is the right one and the answer that you're forced to accept because you have to take into account other people?

It's an important point and a vital consideration. And I think that part of the divisiveness and polarization of our politics is that we insist that every hill needs dying on. We just can deal with the concept that the system is designed to accommodate chaos. "Good" isn't good enough. Anything less than "best" is a disaster.

We do this with our child rearing, too. I'd say it's pervasive in our culture. It's evident in all the ways that government and schools and communities try to assert control and just how much fear a person notices when you insist on privacy and autonomy in any particular part of your life.

AJ Lynch said...

I like McCain's dry sense of humor- it matches mine. I myself am shooting for Emperor of The World btw.

His "poison speech" is very apt.

Ben (The Tiger) said...

Bush has made a joke or two about aspiring to be a dictator.

Is it funny? Maybe not very, but there's a bit of the gallows humour here of being a politician on the political right -- your opponents are always accusing you of fascism anyway, so why not make light of it?

It's rather like if a politician on the centre-left made a joke about nationalizing everyone's stuff. (I might laugh at that.)

former law student said...

knox said...

The comments at that link are what's funny.

Yup. I snorted when I read this comment from "spencer's mom," the more so because it was posted by a commenter named "x's mom."

When McStain thinks he’s made a good joke, he always pauses and flashes that smarmy “look, mommy, I pooped in the big boy potty” grin.

I would say that McCain has made that "dictator" wisecrack several times before, so that it just came out automatically.

Buford Gooch said...

McCain has a wonderful sense of humor. The left has little to no sense of humor. That's why they take his humor as seriousness.

bjm said...

It's a lot funnier than the chilling Dear Leader child sing-along.

Triangle Man said...

Sure it was a joke, but he has a tin ear for humorous content and his delivery sucks. He sometimes comes across as sinister when he is trying to be funny.

Too many jims said...

I don't think it was meant in seriousness and the hyperventilating is kind of silly. That said, can you imagine if Obama had made a similar comment? Commenters here already throw around the word "fascist" with him. I suspect that if he had said it it would be used as evidence of his nefarious plot.

MadisonMan said...

Funny? Eh. I've heard worse jokes. And even worse presentations. That someone takes the clause seriously is very strange.

And I'll echo what tmjims says: What if Obama had said this? I'd probably have the same reaction.

erniecu73 said...

MadisonMan, possible, but not from most over here. Perhaps Cedarford, but I think a great majority would recognize it as a bad joke.

How come I can't remember any jokes made by Obama?

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

I see FLS quotes a ThinkProgress commenter who had a similar idea to mine: what's funny is that in speeches and debates he stop and takes on a shit-eating grin when he uses a good line and knows he delivered it OK. He doesn't do that here.

Where I don't go is this: That means he meant it. He really does aspire to be dictator. I knew it! He was evil! He must be stopped at all costs!

Meade said...

"Do you find it funny?"

If I were a lefty, which I always aspire to be, I would probably not laugh at it.

former law student said...

he stop and takes on a shit-eating grin when he uses a good line and knows he delivered it OK. He doesn't do that here.

McCain neither meant the dictator line seriously, nor was he trying to get a laugh with it. Although, he probably did expect a laugh when he first started saying it. The line is threadbare, stale, to him now.

He's just whimsical, like the Beach Boys' Barbara Ann reference showed.

Apathetic Citizen said...

Mo' Moe!

chickenlittle said...

ROFLMFAO!

Shanna said...

I think it's mildy funny and not objectionable in any way. All he's saying is what anybody honest would say, the only way to get this many people to agree is to compromise. It's not a perfect bill, for him, but his perfect bill wouldn't pass. No big deal.

Lorelei Leigh said...

How come I can't remember any jokes made by Obama?

"You're likeable enough, Hillary."

Oh, wait. You probably meant a joke at his own expense.

chickenlittle said...

LL wrote: You're likeable enough, Hillary.

How come that's only joke anybody ever comes up with?

chickenlittle said...

/the

EDH said...

I've always understood the "if I were dictator" subjunctive to describe a politician's unfettered first choice, as opposed to the legislative compromise he actually confronts having to make or reject.

Is this expression really new to anyone?

EDH said...

...I take the "which I always aspire to be" as his self-deprecating humor at being a politician -- any politician.

erniecu73 said...

If I were michael, which I always aspire to be...

veni vidi vici said...

"The line is threadbare, stale, to him now.

He's just whimsical, like the Beach Boys' Barbara Ann reference showed."

Alternatively, he's just (becoming increasingly) threadbare, stale, like his recent dull and tone-deaf political performances showed.

When I heard his response to the Gwen Ifill book news this morning on the radio, it sounded like he's cashing out his chips and going the Dole way. What the hell is going on in that campaign?

Lorelei Leigh said...

How come that's only joke anybody ever comes up with?

I guess Obama's just not all that funny.

Rich B said...

Well I understood perfectly well what McCain said. If he had power to write the bill exactly the way he wanted, it would be different. However, he should realize that some of our citizens are a bit dense and he should precede any such statement with an explanation so that they don't go off half-cocked.

The Bush dictator comment was edited down to 8 seconds for effect. These were not isolated instances of willful distortions - it's rather typical of our friends on the left.

Triangle Man said...

Rich (and MDH),

but it was the "which I always aspire to be" comment that was supposed to be funny. Was there some set-up for this (a running dictator gag for example) that was not made clear?

Verso said...

Ahhhh. Wingnuts:

"Kathleen Parker is getting hate mail for telling the truth about Palin:"

Parker: "The picture is this: Anyone who dares express an opinion that runs counter to the party line will be silenced. That doesn't sound American to me, but Stalin would approve. Readers have every right to reject my opinion. But when we decide that a person is a traitor and should die for having an opinion different than one's own, then we cross into territory that puts all freedoms at risk."

This may be Parker's first exposure to the rage of the lunatic Republican Party. but those of us who are genuine moderates, and the liberals, have been enduring the terror of offending our conservative neighbors for many, many years. If you live in a conservative community, you simply don't express yourself if you want to feel safe.

Threats by email are bad enough, but Republicans are much worse in person.

Trevor Jackson said...

"The Bush dictator comment was edited down to 8 seconds for effect. These were not isolated instances of willful distortions - it's rather typical of our friends on the left."

Wait, wait. Typical of whom?

Jim said...

Verso -

After the last 8 years of liberal hate directed at everyone in sight who isn't in line with the latest dKos marching orders, your entire post is laughable in the extreme. Violence, vandalism, spittle-flecked diatribes in pretty much every newspaper proclaiming that Republicans are the second-coming of the Nazis, etc. is well-documented. Your fevered imagination is engaged in some serious projection.

When you rejoin the real world, let us know. The anti-psychotic meds are on the counter, now go take them and lie down. Your fantasy world is evidently a very scary one....

Jim said...

trevor -

Even the NYT is calling BS on 5 - count them FIVE - of Obama's ads. Do you really want to play this game?

AJ Lynch said...

Have any liberal pundits said Obama lacks sufficient experience to be president?

If not, why not? Why is there universal certainty about Obama among the liberal punditocracy? It defies the odds when there is unanimous concensus. Obama must be so lucky he should play the lottery.

Simon said...

Trevor, I think the more glaring thing about the ad you linked to is that it's dumb - it makes far too many assumptions about what its audience knows. They needed to show the original McCain line, Obama's criticism of it and the line where Obama comes around (if indeed that's representative of his point).

Either way, though, the answer to your question is that it's characteristic of the left. A classic example is where they cut a seven second rhetorical question out of Sarah Palin's July interview with Larry Kudlow and slapped the label "OMG!! Palin admits she doesn't know what the veeo does?!" on it. (Excessive puncutation is another hallmark of the left these days, it seems.)

Trevor Jackson said...

Simon, dumb is right. I'll allow that the using Kudlow-Palin interview as evidence of her ignorance of what the VP does, but it sure did give us a highlight of her interviewing skills.

I'll even allow the "100 years in Iraq" ads were a distortion of what McCain was saying. (What he was actually saying was more ludicrous, but required more explanation.)

Still this is politics. My point was to slap down Rich B's idea that it only comes from the left.

Jim, that might be a good project. How many McCain ads have been filled with distortions vs. Obama's? Gotta use the same source for the debunking though. Factcheck.org OK with you? I'll get back to you.

knox said...

I guess Obama's just not all that funny.

Why does that not surprise me.

Pastor_Jeff said...

The comment was mildly humorous. He waws poling fun at himself as a politician and at the very paranoid leftists who took him seriously.

What as much funnier was this phrase from the blogger:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) so-called “partisan” floor speech on Monday

The guy apparently thinks no rational person could possibly categorize Pelosi's rant as 'partisan.' Now that's funny!

Kirby Olson said...

McCain and the right poke fun at themselves.

The Obama song would be great if it offered just a tad of a hint of iota of self-parody.

Democrats are too full of themselves either to use this kind of humor, or to understand it in others.

Hooray for McCain. He's human.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Geez. People need to lighten up and get a sense of humour. It's a common saying.

When I'm Queen of the world I'll.....

When I'm King it will be this way.....

Emperor of the Universe etc

No one is really expecting to be Queen of the Cosmos.

Chip Ahoy said...

Dry. Deadpan. Yes, I find that funny. Please, more of that.

rhhardin said...

Absolutely ordinary joke.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

My god, you people are so insensitive! The man was a POW for 5 years. He sustained injuries that make it painful for him to use a keyboard or write with a pen or pencil.

Of course he aspires to dictate.

zeek said...

What do you call a man with a potato penis?

A dick tater.

Peter V. Bella said...

Gee Verso,
I guess it is alright for Obama to use the coursts and sheriffs to stifle freedom of expression for airing critical ads of him. Just think what he and your progressive facists will do when they get in. Eliminate the first Amendment.

Peter V. Bella said...

Have any liberal pundits said Obama lacks sufficient experience to be president?

If not, why not?


He has all the experience and qualifications the Liberals demand:

Community Organizer
Corrupt Machine Politician
Takes bribes- oops- campaign contributions from the right criminals.
Associates with racist ministers and terrorists- Weathermen, Black Panthers, and FALN.

Elliott A said...

Deep down, they are all jealous, insanely jealous of Putin. He's actually in charge.

somefeller said...

When you rejoin the real world, let us know. The anti-psychotic meds are on the counter, now go take them and lie down. Your fantasy world is evidently a very scary one....

Too funny for words, considering the prior paragraph.

McCain's comment was mildly amusing and otherwise not particularly worth talking about. However, if Obama said something like it, one can be sure that conservatives (including some who like to post here) would be quick to talk about how this was indicative of looming Liberal Fascism/Stalinism/someone took my strawberries-ism.

AlphaLiberal said...

Picking Sarah Palin for VP was a bad joke.

The McCain-Palin campaign clarified Gov. Sarah Palin’s (R-AK) remark from last week that “Putin rears his head and comes into the airspace of the United States of America.” The campaign told CBS News, “Russian incursions…inside the air defense identification zone have occurred.” But as the Associated Press reports today, no such incursions have occurred ‘in recent years’:

The air defense identification zone, almost completely over water, extends 12-mile past the perimeter of the United States. … However, no Russian military planes have been flying even into that zone, said Maj. Allen Herritage, a spokesman for the Alaska region of the North American Aerospace Defense Command, at Elmendorf Air Force Base. “To be very clear, there has not been any incursion in U.S. airspace in recent years,” Herritage said.


They should have her well-trained in the dark arts of deflection by tomorrow night. McSame has been focusing his staff on getting her ready.

She's pulling the campaign down. Bad choice, McCain. Thanks.

McCain will soon go really negative, start inventing new Republican victimizations to be outraged over.

AlphaLiberal said...

Bush's popularity is at 22%.
70% of the American people - a new record - disapprove.

Republicans are drowning. Quick, someone throw them an anchor.

amba said...

I thought it was funny. Not ROTFLOL funny, but wry and self-deprecating, more an admission of powerlessness (to even much influence this fractious democracy) than an expression of lust for power. It's not to be taken seriously just because a politician happened to say it. Not only politicians say it -- anyone nostalgic for infantile omnipotence (and who isn't) has said something like it -- and I see it as McCain talking as an ordinary person, forgetting for a moment that he could actually soon become the most powerful human being on the planet. (To which he might add, "Which isn't saying much.")

Trevor Jackson said...

Jim, you still want to know how many more distorting, misleading, or outright lying ads each candidate has produced?

FactCheck.org has a round-up of the big ones of the year here.

My rough count gives McCain well over 20 dings and less than 10 dings for Obama.

Mr. Forward said...

"This may be Parker's first exposure to the rage of the lunatic Republican Party. but those of us who are genuine moderates, and the liberals, have been enduring the terror of offending our conservative neighbors for many, many years. If you live in a conservative community, you simply don't express yourself if you want to feel safe."
Verso

Try growing a pair.

hdhouse said...

Didn't George the Idiot utter the famous words about being a dictator that it would just make things so much easier....

MickyCain wants to be a dictator....well he is halfway there...he has the dic part down pat.

hdhouse said...

Didn't George the Idiot utter the famous words about being a dictator that it would just make things so much easier....

MickyCain wants to be a dictator....well he is halfway there...he has the dic part down pat.

MadisonMan said...

A dick tater.

You want fries with that?

Jay in Eastern NC said...

I snorted. Look, everyone in DC would like to be a dictator because each and every one of them thinks they and they alone have the right answer.

The Clintons certainly suffered from "Everything Would be Fine If Only I Was The Only One In Charge" Syndrome.

And Obama once noted in an interview that each morning in DC 100 Sentors looked at themselves in the mirror and said "Why not me?" in reference to his running for President. They ALL think they should have the big job.

Given the divide in the parties, it is a wonder ANY business gets done in DC.

The Left is simply deranged while the right is demoralized. Nice combo.

Of course I am just a regular guy, but if I could be in charge for just a day I could fix the whole mess. . . .

Stop sniggering we ALL do that once in a while but reporters can't play gotcha with regular folks as there is no attaboys in it for them.

Rich B said...

I see that TJ responds to my comment by citing Factcheck.org's evaluation of ads. I wasn't talking about ads, I was talking about lefty websites. I regularly check references when they are cited by some of the regular lefties here and usually I find that the quote either doesn't exist in a verifiable form, or it has been misconstrued. I think the latest example was the citation of the Republican ad (once again, cited by one or more lefty blogs) released prior to the House bailout, and supposedly undermining that effort. I viewed the ad and it did not such thing - it quoted the $700B cost with a clear indication that this was an incredible amount.

BTW - factcheck.org may have been a reliable arbiter at one time, but not now. I checked out your list and found it rather tendentious and not very solidly resarched. No gold standard there.