December 29, 2005

Quotes of the year 2005 -- my choices.

After writing that last post, on the WaPo's quotes of the year, I got the idea of going through the past year of my writing on this blog to find the quotes I thought were most interesting. Here they are, beginning with a quote from back in January:

"I can't think of any examples where I said, 'Gosh, I wish I had more power.'" -- President Bush

"When you think of the New Testament, they get about 2 of the values and we get about 27." -- Howard Dean

"Christ did not come down from the cross." -- Pope John Paul II (on why he didn't retire)

"But I also know if I can get music without buying it, I'm going to do so." -- Justice David Souter (at oral argument in the Grokster case)

"I can't agree with you. 'Our laws come from God.' If you don't believe it sends that message, you're kidding yourself." -- Justice Antonin Scalia (at oral argument in the Ten Commandments case)

"Try to survive a tornado with a post-structuralist." -- Camille Paglia (speaking in Madison)

"If I should ever be in a vegetative state and kept alive on life support, please, for the love of God, don't ever show me in that condition on national television." -- Kenny in the "Best Friends Forever" episode of "South Park"

"Matt, Matt, you don't even -- you're glib. You don't even know what Ritalin is." -- Tom Cruise

"What are you, some redneck blogger pig?"-- Claire Fisher on "Six Feet Under" (to her boyfriend, when he defended the war in Iraq)

"Narm." -- Nate Fisher on "Six Feet Under."

"That's for me to know and for your to find out." -- Chief Justice William Rehnquist (responding to a question about whether he's retiring on July 11th, causing me to write "How near death can he be if he's horsing around like that?" He died on September 3rd.)

"The Supreme Court voted last week to undo private property rights and to empower governments to kick people out of their homes and give them to someone else because they feel like it." Rep. Tom Delay (on the Kelo case)

"He's crushing his testicles in tight trousers for world peace." -- John Lydon (insulting Bono)

"We have an American refugee situation on our hands." -- a Red Cross spokesperson (re Katrina)

"We perceive no reason why both parents of a child cannot be women." -- the California Supreme Court

"What dreary sentimental nonsense this all is, and how much space has been wasted on it." -- Christopher Hitchens (on Cindy Sheehan)

"If you're not on drugs, you've got problems." -- Jimmy Kimmel (to Courtney Love)

"There's loads of room for judgment. The judges do judge." -- Justice Stephen Breyer

"They will do what they think is in their interest, however they define it." -- Senator Hillary Clinton (predicting how Democrats would vote on the nomination of John Roberts)

"Would you agree that the opposite of being dead is being alive?" -- Senator Tom Coburn (asking the most ridiculous question asked at the Roberts confirmation hearings)

"By becoming John Roberts the chief justice, don't ever forget to be John Roberts, the man." -- Senator Mike DeWine (at the Roberts hearing)

"Nobody ever went to a ballgame to see the umpire." -- John Roberts (at his confirmation hearing)

"I believe the common character of the universe is not harmony, but hostility, chaos and murder." -- Werner Herzog (in voiceover in the movie "Grizzly Man")

"I haven't even run out of weed yet." -- one of the New Orleans holdouts (on not evacuating after Katrina)

"Almost all of them that we see, are so poor and they are so black." -- Wolf Blitzer (on the Katrina victims)

"Anyone can read the news to you. I promise to feel the news at you." -- Steve Colbert

"She needs more than murder boards. She needs a crash course in constitutional law." -- Arlen Specter (on Harriet Miers)

"I think with a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court, you can't play, you know, hide the salami, or whatever it's called." -- Howard Dean

"I know her heart." -- President Bush on Harriet Miers

"These baseless attacks send the wrong signal to our troops and to an enemy that is questioning America's will." -- President Bush (finally fighting back against war critics)

"It is ironic that several of these individuals, who so staunchly and proudly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the ID Policy." -- Judge John E. Jones III (in the Intelligent Design case)

"I don't expect you to support everything I do, but tonight I have a request: Do not give in to despair, and do not give up on this fight for freedom." -- President Bush (on the Iraq war)

"We will talk to each other, and we will connect with each other, and we will weave the country together like a piece of cloth." -- A voter in Iraq

"I have no friends." -- Howard Stern

"We undermine the president's credibility at our nation's peril." -- Senator Joe Lieberman

"The crimes of the United States have been systematic, constant, vicious, remorseless, but very few people have actually talked about them." -- Harold Pinter (accepting the Nobel Prize)

"I for one do not dance to dance music; disco for me is a lofty metaphysical mode that induces contemplation." -- Camille Paglia (criticizing Madonna's new CD)


chuck b. said...

Wow, it must have taken you hours to put this post together.

One of my favorite quotes from 2005 came from Hugh Hewitt...the one where he gave Bush a B+ for the Harriet Miers nomination...too funny. You blogged it but I'm not going to go look for it.

Gordon Freece said...

Harold Pinter: The Fat Elvis of literary leftism. He's so far gone in self-parody it's... it's kinda cute.

I love that "passionate committment" thing the lefties are into: The more obsessively and irrationally you hate somebody, the more right you must necessarily be. It's all about the adjectives, baby! Four in a row? Jackpot!

Left-wing tantrum-prose is fun. It's all exactly the same, but they keep compulsively writing more. Like termites building nests.

miklos rosza said...

Camille Paglia listening to disco without ever dancing to it remains something I just don't get. I try to picture her with headphones on, concentrating, but it's just too wacky a picture to keep in my head.

Anonymous said...

Gee ann, great idea. I wouldnt of had the time.
I like the lieberman quote the best. I like johnny Rotten, the least.

Beth said...

Pity poor stoner dude, please. His stash must be gone by now, and post-Katrina pot prices are high!

vienalga said...

I watched "Grizzly Man" last night, and when I got up this morning (in Latvia) and saw the quotation from Werner Hertzog, I felt a bit of a chill go down my spine. If we are passive in the face of predators, we are prey...

The Drill SGT said...

I found the Hillary quote brutally honest, surprisingly so, and also frightening in the long term. One would hope that Senators would "do what they think is in the country's best interest". I think there are a few Senators in her party that would still do that. Lieberman and Feingold at opposite ends of the spectrum come to mind. And a couple on the right as well. The rest?

bill said...

my pop culture quote is from Lost, Mr. Eki to Locke: Do not mistake coincidence for fate.

and some blog quotes

Comment left at
There's something immensely stupid about the terms "red state" and "blue state", not to mention elitist, divisive, over-simplified. I really, really, really hope we can lose this false binary system in the near future.

Michael Schaub, at Bookslut:
Who's responsible for introducing celebrities to poetry? Was it Ally Sheedy? Whoever it was, I wish I knew how to kick you.

Comment left at Websnark: I think Wikipedia's like Christianity- a wonderful idea being ruined by a pack of overzealous idiots.

Poppy Z. Brite and Christmas in New Orleans: It's like the Gift of the Magi, but with Dixie beer.

The winner, and a humorous bit of foreshadowing it was, Roger L. Simon's "Nice to talk to you."

bill said...

And if I was pulling favorite quotes or comments from Althouse, this late entry from yesterday would probably make the cut,

Thersites: Up until the hurricane, New Orleans was doing pretty swell too.

Cousin Don said...

I love the Johnny "Rotten" Lydon quote...

To borrow an Ann Coulter book title, "Bono! Shut up and sing!"

MD said...

Someone's gonna pod cast this list in a whispery voice with some chill, trance drum beats in the background, just you see....

Okay, maybe not, just playing around, just kidding! I found reading the quotes oddly hypnotic.

Ann Althouse said...

I found searching for the quotes oddly hypnotic. How long did it take to scan a year of posts to pick them out? Just over 5 hours, done very intently and going as quickly as I could the whole time. (If only I could work up that level of concentration whenever I've got a project to do!)

ottotex said...

I liked the comment left by Goesh on 12/29...

"The high and hard road of virtue is often best viewed from a safe distance."

jeff said...

I thought that John Roberts (the reporter, not the CJ) question about the Alito nomination being "sloppy seconds" should have made some list, somewhere.

MadisonMan said...

It's not clear to me that any of these quotes are as instantly recognizable -- or have entered the pop lexicon -- like heckuva job. In several years, will anyone know the speaker of any of these? Perhaps JPII. Or (alas) Tom Cruise.

A quote of the year should transport one instantly to the year it was said and why: "Mr. Gorbachev, Tear down this wall"

Heckuva job sure does that for me.

The Drill SGT said...


Madisonman has a point about memorability (sp?).

Having said that, I think you need

" You are stuck on Stupid!"

- LTG Honore

Ron said...

Ann, you should have a list of your favorite posts of 2005!

Barnstable said...

Stuck on stupid!


Line of the year.

Ann Althouse said...

Madison Man (and others): My point here isn't to identify memorable quotes, but to pick out the quotes that interested me at the time and remain interesting to me now, for whatever reason. They are just my choices, based on my standards. You can enjoy them or react to them as you like, but you can't argue with the fact that they don't belong on some list other than the one I'm purporting to make.

Prometheus said...

How about this one?
Pat Robertson: "If [Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez] thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it.";[Christian Broadcasting Network's The 700 Club, 8/22/05]
That would have been among my choices. What I think was especially memorable about this quote was how he tried to lie his way out of it. Typical.

Bruce Hayden said...

Though I might debate the fringes of what was included and not, I think you did a superb job here. Thanks.

My favorite there I think was Kenny.

A.M. Mora y Leon said...

Ann, you ignored all the rich wealth of material provided to you by none other than Hugo Chavez. How about, 'Ahhh, Condolences (he meant Condoleezza), I think she dreams of me. I should get the job done, but I won't stoop that low.'

Or, 'To get rich is wrong.'

Or, 'Bush is a pendejo.'

Or the unforgettable: 'Mexico is the lapdog of the empire.'

The possibilities from Uncle Hugo are simply endless. But no worries. He'll provide you a wealth of new material in the coming year, because he's not going away any time soon. Age seems to increase his 'quotability' and his head is getting ever bigger, right alongside his expanding mouth.