December 31, 2015

Earlier in 2015.

"Great style and substance. We looked at this one and talked about it for 15 minutes," I said last May, about this:

And here's something else I had last May, "Masculinity is hard," about an Elspeth Reeve TNR piece called "No Campaigns for Manly Men," which took the position, as I put it, that "without the broad, loud-mouthed, bullying Chris Christie in the presidential race, we have no 'manly men.'"
You might want to challenge that characterization of Christie, but that's the way Reeve presents him as she sets up her argument that the real men are gone.
Who’s the manly man’s man of the right? It’s not a politician like Ted Cruz, who exudes “televangelist” more than “cowboy.” It’s not a pundit like Glenn Beck, who cries over the Constitution and sells premium dad jeans. Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Bobby Jindal—they’re all kind of cute, and certainly non-threatening. Jeb Bush is selling himself as the Smart Bush.
It was so pre-Trump back then. 

Actually, Trump is mentioned in the Elspeth Reeve article. She consults the linguist Geoff Nunburg and he found it "hard to think of manly men," so he switched the subject to assholes:
Assholes do very well on the right in particular. I wrote a book about assholes, I feel like an expert on the subject. And they do very well on the right. I mean there was a period in which Donald Trump was leading the Republican polls. And it isn’t as if there is anybody in America who doesn’t think Donald Trump’s an asshole. But he’s like, our asshole.
Our asshole. It's not exactly a campaign slogan, but think about it. 


Gahrie said...

Our asshole. It's not exactly a campaign slogan, but think about it.

This has been the Democratic strategy going back to at least Goldwater.

Rick Turley said...

So it may all boil down to your preference of an asshole or a vagina, then.

traditionalguy said...

The Donald is only offensive to people that think a smart, eloquent, good looking man with a warrior's heart is cheating. But he cannot help it.

Lyssa said...

Our asshole. It's not exactly a campaign slogan, but think about it.

The Democrat's donkey symbol goes back to Andrew Jackson, who, when called a jackass, liked it so much he decided to adopt it.

Michael K said...

So, Ted Kennedy, Chris Dodd and Barney Frank don't qualify as "assholes?"

Who knew ?

Barney, of course, is in a special category.

hombre said...

"Our asshole" seems likely about Trump. It also fits the Clintons. It is perplexing to try to come up with more sleazy grifting assholes than the Clintons, who top Obama in that category.

Should we be embarrassed because there are "not Democrats" who support "our asshole" while Democrats revel in support of their asshole[s]? Maybe not.

Or, is it reprehensible to support someone BECAUSE he is an asshole, but not so to support an asshole while DENYING she is an asshole? Maybe not.

Donald Douglas said...

I think Elspeth Reeve's an asshole, heh.

averagejoe said...

"Assholes do very well on the right in particular."

Yeah, no assholes on the left, right? No Al Frankens or Harry Reids or Elijah Cummings's or Barney Franks or Bernie Sanders or Howard Deans or Debbie Wasserman Schultz's or Hillary Clintons or Keith Ellisons or Tony Weiners or Bob Filners or Sheila Jackson-Lees or Dick Durbins or John F Kerrys or Barack Obamas! No assholes at all in the democrat party, otherwise that would mean that those smug self-satisfied assholes like Geoff Nunburg(who wants you to know that he wrote a book on assholes, so he considers himself an expert) who only vote for democrats are not the morally and mentally superior people that they imagine themselves to be. And yet, democrat party assholes like Nunburg get such a kick out of it when one of their elected representatives acts like an asshole, like when Hillary said What difference does it make about an attack on our consulate? Or when John Kerry said if you don't go to college then you are stupid and will end up in the military. Or when Barry Obama scratches his nose with his middle finger and says "I won". That kind of shit makes assholes like Nunburg cream his shorts in delight... the asshole!

JAORE said...

Sure she's a lying, money grubbing, criminal enterprising bitch. But she's OUR bitch. Think about it.

Michael in ArchDen said...

I think it's a great slogan. Maybe "An Asshole to Make America Great Again"

David said...

If you feel like you are an expert on assholes, you may know the least about the one you see in the mirror.

Birkel said...

So Elspeth Reeve has a fabulous husband and she is anti-GOP. This qualifies as a large yawn.

eric said...

You need an asshole to get all the shit out.

Quaestor said...

Trump is not an asshole. Trump is a dick.

Geoff Nunburg is a walking contradiction, a linguist who doesn't understand colloquial English. How goddamned useless is that?

Skeptical Voter said...

Looks to me like the "expert" linguist is doing a little projection there. He may or may not be an expert linguist, but he's definitely an expert asshole.

David said...

Rahm, Harry Reid, Schumer, Wasserman-Schultz, Anthony Weiner aka Carlos Danger, Kerry, Pelosi come to mind

Just a quick list off the top of my head.

Ann Althouse said...

@Quaester That's exactly what Meade said to me 20 minutes ago, with exactly the same pop culture reference.

Sebastian said...

Better our dick than their [fill-in-the-blank-for-O].

Quaestor said...

That's exactly what Meade said to me 20 minutes ago, with exactly the same pop culture reference.

What is that they say about great minds...?

Phil 3:14 said...

"(Trump is) smart, eloquent, good looking man "

Now that's some crazy shit right there.

Carter Wood said...

Denis Leary, Asshole, suggests Quaestor is correct that Trump is more a dick. Trump does not match the following:

I'm just a regular Joe with a regular job.
I'm your average white suburbanite slob.
I like football and porno and books about war.
I've got an average house with a nice hardwood floor.
My wife and my job, my kids and my car.
My feet on my table and a Cuban cigar.

But sometimes that just ain't enough to keep a man like me interested (oh no) no way (uh-uh). No, I've gotta go out and have fun at someone else's expense.
(oh yeah) yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah.

I drive really slow in the ultra-fast lane,
While people behind me are going insane.
I'm an a**hole (He's an a**hole, what an a**hole)
I'm an a**hole (He's an a**hole, such an a**hole)

Fernandinande said...

Peeve Shelter.

Mid-Life Lawyer said...

Well, maybe "Our son of a bitch", but yeah. The great unwashed want a son of a bitch on our side.

Gojuplye said...

Were you born an asshole
Have you been one all your life?
All your friends are assholes
Cuz they've known you all your life.
I bet when you go home at night
You have an asshole for a wife.

I believe its called the I-95 song. Was sort of popular in the mid 80s or so.

Sam L. said...

The Dems already have two.

Alan Anderson said...

"the Clintons. It is perplexing to try to come up with more sleazy grifting assholes than the Clintons, who top Obama in that category."

You racist: give the lad a chance, the Arkansas mafia were at it for at least 20 years before Barry.. he need time to catch up..and he will...

n.n said...

Transgender vulgarity. A microaggression.

dwick said...

And then we have those on the left perpetually whining about the coarsening of our politics and political debate...

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Eh, I dunno if I want to read blog posts about how our asshole got schlonged....

Amanda said...

"In the halls of the Pentagon, there is a different plan afoot for the Trump presidency. Here, officers are privately contemplating what they would do should Trump become their commander-in-chief. And more often than not, they proclaim they will leave.

“By 2016 I will have my 20 years in and can get out of here,” one military official said, referring to the amount of time a service member needs to collect retirement pay.

Spend enough time with a service member, and the topic of Trump comes up, always unsolicited. It is far less political than it sounds. Trump’s attack plans for the so-called Islamic State widely known as ISIS—his call to ban Muslims from the United States, his suggestions that cutting off the flow of information through the Internet can protect the homeland—many said, are an affront to the values they vowed to die to defend.

Each one of them took an oath to defend the Constitution, which protects the freedom of speech and gives Congress, not just one person, the power send the nation to war. They also swear to “obey the orders of the president of the United States.”

This Daily Beast correspondent has heard such sentiments from at least a dozen commanders in the past few months. Such conversations can also be heard at common areas—in cafeteria lines and around lunch tables.

And so in the course of conversation, plots of a different kind emerge—contingencies in case Trump really is elected to the White House.

“By 2016 I will have my 20 years in and can get out of here,” one military official said, referring to the amount of time a service member needs to collect retirement pay.
“This is not the country I joined to defend.”

“I am turning in my papers.”

“I’m moving to a farm.”"

Gahrie said...


Given what Obama has done to our military and its leadership while he has been in office, that is a feature not a bug.

The military is turning recruits away, and involuntarily separating officers...let the Obama drones go and good riddance.

StephenFearby said...

Harold Bornstein, MD is an expert on assholes and their plumbing. He's the NYC gastroenterologist who wrote Trump's amazing medical report, which noted Trump's “astonishingly excellent" lab tests, a conclusion supported by the release of a single test result, the Trump 0.15 PSA. Which, like the Trumpster himself, is now deemed unreliable:

Not explained is why his still visually overweight patient has to take a statin.

Since Trump's doctor makes his living examining assholes, it is no doubt fitting that he has written an asshole report for an asshole patient:


Trump's Medical Report Is More Insane Than His Campaign Somehow

Donald Trump’s doctor released a medical report so silly that when we asked the American Medical Association about its language, their spokesman started to laugh.

BN said...

"I am moving to a farm."

I love you city folks. Bless yer hearts.

The "farm" will eat yer fuckin ass alive! After it makes you cry and pray fer mercy. LO fuckin L.

BN said...

"So, Ted Kennedy, Chris Dodd and Barney Frank don't qualify as "assholes?"

Who knew ?"

Uh... who didn't?

mikee said...

By asking us to support "our asshole" the premise of Trump being an asshole is presumed, without supporting evidence, and thus uses the same technique as Trump, moving the argument from whether he is an asshole or not, to why we support him when he is an asshole. Well played, vile Democrat.

Hillary has the personality of a Mafia Don's wife and the morals of a Mafia Don's mistress, yet still has support from Dems. (See what I did there?)

It is a wonderful technique, moving the discussion from an assumed extreme, to a question about something else which is contingent on supporting that extreme. And it is a technique every bit as annoying as Barry Obama's repeated use of straw men arguments from 2008 to the present, where "some Republicans say some crazy thing" but his policy is more sensible than that crazy thing, which oddly enough no Republican ever actually said.

Still, Hillary just outright lies to the public, and gets caught, and shrugs, so there is some entertainment value there for the next 5 years.

mikeyes said...

I'm not sure what you really mean by "asshole" except that the term is something you say when you don't like the person called that, but the President of the United States does need to be an unrepentant bastard who is willing to make tough decisions that will cost lives and maybe political positioning. The security of this country is too precious for a "nice guy" (say, like Dr. Ben Carson) and the position of President often dictates actions that may not be in the ideological wheelhouse when push comes to shove and these decisions come with incomplete information most of the time. If a person can't do that, he or she should not be President.
Ike is a good example of someone who had to make tough decisions. The possibility of nuclear confrontation was close when he was President. We had just wiped out two Japanese cities (with no regrets) and had weapons much more powerful than those in the early 50s. The USSR threatened to take over more of Europe including Berlin and many politicos on both sides were willing to start WWIII to halt the Commies. Ike stopped that nattering by the peanut gallery by simple saying no, a tough thing to do in the circumstances. This is not the decision of a weak man and while he didn't go to war, he stopped one which is much harder when everyone else is willing, damn the consequences.
Ike made the decision to sacrifice thousands of troops to take Europe, he was a leader who knew the costs but was willing to take them when it counted and had the perspective that allowed him to make decisions that were best for the country when the specter of atomic war was facing us. A lot of people thought he was an asshole at the time for not going to war. Think about this when calling someone an asshole.
(On the other hand, McArthur was an asshole and no one wanted to put him in office )