July 7, 2022

"Always love your photos, the rising and the setting. How about you take a stab at D Millbank(sic, maybe)’s defense of Biden in WaPo today."

"I trust your judgment enough to want to know what you thought…. Is this the denial stage then, or a shot off the bow to start it?"

Wrote Rhonda, in the first post of last night's open thread (which had a few sunrise photos).

I'm glad to hear from Rhonda. Why, only 5 days ago, I commented — in a post about pinkness — that the name Rhonda means "the noisy one." The name Rhoda means rose — pink. One letter makes so much difference.

But here's Rhonda making noise about me possibly blogging a Dana Milbank column that I'd already skimmed and deemed too dumb to blog: "Give Biden a break." Give me a break.

Tim in Vermont said "Before inflation, Althouse said it was one thousand dollars to get her to write whatever she wanted on a topic of your choosing, but maybe she writes about what Democratic shill Milbank wrote today in the three letter disinformation clearinghouse that is the Washington Post."

I don't know what "three letter" refers to, and I don't remember making that offer, but I do accept $1,000 donations — see the PayPal link in the sidebar — and you can leave a note about the topic. Remember though that what you get is whatever I want to say and that I'm the final arbiter of what counts as "on topic." To give an obvious example, this post you're reading right now, is already a post on the topic of Dana Milbank's column.

But the truth is that I'm blogging this now not because of Rhonda's prod, but because I got a second prod. My son John wrote about it on Facebook: "This piece makes no sense. It quotes Democrats complaining that Biden hasn’t had enough of a sense of urgency on abortion and other issues. Then the author (Dana Milbank) tells them to shut up — why? Because Biden has made a lot of strongly worded *statements*. But that’s just talk — that’s not taking action."

What I see in Milbank's column is another plea — I'm seeing these pleas everywhere — for people to please please please refrain from hurting Democrats' chances in the next election. It's so dismally weak. Here's what jumps out of that Milbank column for me:
For weeks, Democrats have arrayed themselves in traditional circular firing formation, complaining about the president’s failure.... Accompanying this hat trick of own-goal scoring by Democrats were [etc. etc.].... The fratricide is likely stoked by the press, which likes a “Dems-in-disarray” story and would love a presidential primary. Democrats are habitually more self-critical than their Republican counterparts....

So shut up, lest you help Republicans, and keep voting for Democrats. 

57 comments:

tim in vermont said...

Well it can't be because he is a lousy president.

tim in vermont said...

BTW, "three letter" is FBI, CIA, DoJ... You know, basically the guys who 'leaked' us into the Iraq War by whispering disinformation into the ear of various WaPo reporters.

Joe Smith said...

The press writes glowingly of dems because they have 'good intentions.'

They only do evil things, and evil things (inflation, border invasion) are the result of bad policy.

But their intentions are good; give people pandemic dollars, help asylum-seekers, etc.

But conservative voters want to see their politicians actually do something.

Unfortunately, the R gang in DC (Graham and Romney being the worst examples) are all about speeches and sternly-worded letters...

AlbertAnonymous said...

It’s Dana Milbank. ‘Nuff said.

But, please, pass the popcorn…

Jamie said...

For weeks, Democrats have arrayed themselves in traditional circular firing formation, complaining about the president’s failure.... Accompanying this hat trick of own-goal scoring by Democrats were [etc. etc.].... The fratricide is likely stoked by the press...

So many metaphors, so little substance.

John Althouse Cohen said...

Any Democrats criticizing a Democratic president are a “circular firing squad.” (Notice how the media uses that kind of repellent imagery to try to evoke an emotional reaction from you.) But when a Republican president is criticized by Republicans, that’s inspiring and brave.

Buckwheathikes said...

"three letter disinformation clearinghouse"

NSA/CIA/FBI

The Washington Post is their in-house blog, where they post disinformation narratives they wish to have promulgated by the rest of the media.

TreeJoe said...

Dana Milbank has, somehow, continued his downfall of intellectual honesty.

Why are Democrats in a circular firing squad?

Because that's what happens when you have no leaders, your policies are failing, and those elected to executive positions (i.e the President) are broadly seen as ineffectual and/or liars. And while Trump combined the bad habits of lying, being wrong, and making figurative statements that were often used to illustrate a point but frequently re-framed to try to discredit him, Biden just constantly lies, makes up historical situations, and says things (in writing and verbally) that are easily disprovable. And for him, that's a 4-5 decade trend as a politician.

In other words....Democrats are rightfully so eating themselves because they have no leaders.

gilbar said...

Actually, there is one (and, i'm Pretty sure; Only ONE) person that could save the democrats..
She'd save them in 2024; but, if They WANTED her to.. She Could start saving them RIGHT NOW!
If they got behind her, it'd make a HUGE difference this Nov. And, they be IN CHARGE by 2024.

The Problem (Their Problem?) They will REFUSE to be saved by her. Even though, they'd be able to get most of their plans done with her at the helm.. They WON'T Have her.. Because, She's Pretty.
She is Tulsi Gabbard, and she could (easily!) rally the country behind her..
Except the democrats won't let her

Buckwheathikes said...

"three letter disinformation clearinghouse"

NSA/CIA/FBI

Adding: You've probably heard of one of their most famous bloggers. His name was Mark Felt.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Accompanying this hat trick of own-goal scoring by Democrats were...

This is where I would have expected your on-topic to take you.

Mr Wibble said...

"Three-letter" refers to "three letter agencies" like the FBI, CIA, NSA, etc. In other words, the WaPo is a mouthpiece for the bureaucracy.

My suspicion is that the WH leaked the Dobbs decision, and that it was a short-term attempt to keep Dems united behind this admin. It may also have backfired spectacularly by making the admin look impotent and incompetent. They had two months and were unable to shift the court votes, nor prepare a legal response to a decision which they knew was coming.

My longstanding theory is that Biden was expected to get BBB, Afghan withdrawal, and COVID vaccines as his big accomplishments in his first year. This would allow him to be seen as a "successful" president by the left. After that he'd fade into the background and let Harris be the face of the admin until after the midterms when he'd resign. As the failures piled up I've been expecting the Dems to turn on Biden for a while. I expected it to occur last Nov/Dec, in preparation for a SOTU in which he was praised but followed by an announcement that he was resigning for "health reasons." However, Biden is refusing to go and so we're starting to see the groundwork laid for more extreme measures. I wouldn't be surprised if there was another Hunter Biden leak, and Dem leadership in Congress were to suddenly hold a press conference and soberly announce that the latest news compels them to call for a special prosecutor to investigate.


Carol said...

That circular firing squad trope sure gets old. You see, they're all shooting at each other! Haha!

And right wingers say the same exact thing about the GOP! Whaddya know!

And none of them have been to a central committee meeting in their life.





born01930 said...

The Last Days of Pleas

Wa St Blogger said...

The fratricide is likely stoked by the press, which likes a “Dems-in-disarray” story...

I want some of whatever he is eating/smoking/drinking. It's more like they hate them, but when things get to a point they cannot ignore them and have to run some sort of story, mostly designed to say how it's really the Republican's fault.

wildswan said...

"When a true love dies
Smoke gets in your eyes"

A song from a far-off country that began to run through my head as I tried to see through the clouds of comments to what Dana Millbank said. As far as I can tell Boris Johnson just resigned over in Britain which I think has sparked off jealous agonies among US Dems. That's what the Brits can do - when the Exec becomes terminally useless or unpopular, BLAM, he's gone. He doesn't have a term of office to serve out. Biden is perched on the shoulders of the Dems like the Old Man of the Sea till January 2025. I'd laugh if it weren't that he's damaging the country as well as the Dems. But this country needed to find out what socialism really is - not the gush, the youthful dream, but the reality. The reality is: criminals and incompetents harming everyone, doing the worst to the weakest, while at the same time preening themselves as compassionate, progressive and non-racist. Exhibit A - the Teacher's Union which preferentially closed schools in minority areas and set back education there by years - not a smidgeon of self-knowledge has been acquired. However, I think the country is painfully acquiring insight.

Narr said...

I think Joe Rogan should interview Biden, and if he doesn't I won't like him any more and will call him names.

Lem Former Twitter Aficionado said...

What JAC said. 👆🏽

Hunter Biden's tax payer funded Hooker said...

"Circular firing squad"
- geez.

Jefferson's Revenge said...

Does anyone here know any person, either personally or in the media, who supported/voted for Biden and who now admits that they made a mistake? I do not but I do not travel in leftish circles.

I am still waiting for someone to say that they were wrong in their policy and personal trust in Biden. Crickets.

Yancey Ward said...

I suspect, though Tim can answer for himself, that the reference is to the FBI.

mikee said...

My problem with Dana Milbank articles is that the only other Dana I've ever known was a lovely and vivacious collegiate undergraduate coed with truly magnificent breasts. My mind automatically chooses to envision her instead of this guy whenever I hear or read the name.

This mistaken ID is only a problem for me if I try to think about the guy's writing, which doesn't happen because I think of the busty female Dana instead of him. The potential problem is thus self-resolving. So really I have zero problems with Dana Milbank articles, and enjoy hearing or reading her first name. Thank you, brain.

Yancey Ward said...

Oh, I see Tim had an even broader meaning.

Milbank reminds me of that meme of the guy crying, "Leave Britney alone!!!!"

It has got to be gutwrenching for big Biden supporters to be witnessing the colossal failure that President Shit For Brains has become. It is almost too much schadenfreude for me to handle.

Yancey Ward said...

But here is the thing- Biden isn't the guy in charge- any fool should be able to understand this. All Biden does is what he is told to do by, at a minimum, his shit-for-brains wife, and probably Ron Klain. Seriously, haven't all you seen the picture with the cue card Biden was carrying a few weeks ago- that wasn't a photoshopped photo- it was the real instructions his handlers gave him for that event. They were the sorts of instructions you give a 6 year old who has just started to read.

Rollo said...

Silly, silly me. I assumed Rhonda was talking about David Milliband, the British politician. His take on Biden might actually have been interesting. With Milbank analyzing Biden's comments it's just piling bullshit on horseshit.

You have to cut out a lot of fumbling to make Biden sound decisive, but the big problem is that he's exhausted his political capital and his energies. People don't respect him. Those whose eyes are open recognize that he's not going to become dynamic all of a sudden. He won't change course and he can still do much harm, but he's not going to become a superhero.

madAsHell said...

Interesting, Milbank's opinion piece has been up for over 12 hours, and it has zero comments.

rcocean said...

Milbank, like other veteran MSM Reporters and TV talking heads, posed for years as "objective" newsman. Now, they've come out of the closet to show who they really are: Democrat party hacks and extreme Leftists.

If you remember, Milbank made a big fuss about being kicked out of the WH Press Corp Question sessions by Trump. Why he was the big reporter man, the WH press guy, who was speaking "Truth to power" how dare Trump! And then got an opinion column/blog and set about proving he was Nancy pelosi's best friend forever, and a Unpaid DNC member.

A lot of these MSM guys on Twitter sound like AOC or Adam Shithead.

Gusty Winds said...

It's sad to see rich white liberals tell loyal inner city minority voters to just shut up and take it.

Gas and food prices too high? Shut up and take it...Ukraine is more important than you. Your public schools suck? Shut up and take it...Teachers Unions are more important than you. Too many drugs rolling into your communities? Shut up and take it...the open border to turn Texas blue is more important than you. Too many murders in your neighborhood? Shut up and take it, were trying to defund the police.

I'm firmly convinced that wealthy white liberals are the most racist people in our country.

Jersey Fled said...

But their intentions are good; give people pandemic dollars, help asylum-seekers, etc.

I used to think the Democrats were the party of good intentions. I don't think that way anymore.

Give people pandemic dollars? Make them dependent on big government handouts

Help asylum seekers? Import reliable Democrat voters because the ones we got don't like them anymore.

The list goes on. Every good intention comes with a curse.

William said...

It's better to light a candle than curse the darkness. Here are some effective steps that Biden can take to sidestep this abortion imbroglio.....Indian Reservations are to some extent sovereign nations. That's why they're allowed to build gambling casinos on their land. Biden should encourage the building of abortion centers on these lands and maybe even provide federal funds for their construction. Win win for everybody. Pregnant women. Their boyfriends. The Indian nations.... Perhaps the reservations could encourage twofers. Have an abortion there and get a fifty dollar credit for use in the casino. Instead of fretting around in the waiting room, the hubby or boyfriend could spend a fun couple of hours in the casino.....Abortions are frequently dour occasions. They needn't be. Biden, if he took these steps, could be the midwife of abortions as a festive event. His re-election would be assured if he took such steps.

rcocean said...

The MSM never gives Biden any tough questions, and gets angry and upset if anyone at Fox asks a question that's the least bit difficult. Issues that hurt him, like the Open southern border and refusal of Biden to enforce the immigration laws, are buried to the greatest extent possible.

How many stories on Hunter Biden have been in the WaPo/NYT lately? How many about the devasting effects of inflation or gas prices on the average American? Have you seen anything there on the Netherlands farmers protesting and getting violent? Have seen anything that reflects badly on Zelensky or the Ukraine?

If you have, its very minimal. under Trump it was an army of investigative reporters trying to ferret any possible ethical or legal lapse by the TRump admnistration. Anything that could damage Trump was given sreaming (fake) headlines. With Biden, no interest at all in anonymous sources. If there's any criticism of Biden, its that he's too conservative, and not attacking the Right enough.

traditionalguy said...

The green new deal has worked its destruction faster than the marxists planned. Now we want that Bad Orange Man Trump back to fix things…but not a second longer.

Kevin said...

"Dana Milbank or Jen Rubin?" would be a fun game.

Kai Akker said...

Numerous Althouse posts have for days, probably weeks, called out for a "Left's crack-up" tag.

It is karma at work after the "fortified" election. Here is what they got out of that fortification. And all of us must suffer with it, wherever the idiots will take it.

Democrats seem headed to a similar fate as the American Whigs. Neither in ideas nor in personalities do they have anything to offer the present, much less the future.

Michael K said...

Remember when we used to call Biden "Obama's impeachment insurance policy?" Now, he has cleverly installed his own impeachment insurance policy with Kamala.

It would be funny if they were not destroying the country with insane policies.

Howard said...

This is a DNC MSM DAVOS problem trying desperately Not to Lose rather than Going for the Win.

Jerry said...

Blogger Jefferson's Revenge said...
Does anyone here know any person, either personally or in the media, who supported/voted for Biden and who now admits that they made a mistake? I do not but I do not travel in leftish circles.

My sister in law... she HATED Bush. Thought Obama was wonderful, until he started doing some ridiculous stuff and then it was "Oh, I don't want to talk about politics." Put up with that for 8 years, then "Oh, I LOATHE Trump, because of what he did in NYC. He's so corrupt. He's got to be, he succeeded in NYC real estate." Pointing out that he was loved until he started his campaign didn't work. Pointing out the good stuff that was documented BY THE MEDIA before he started his run didn't work. She was convinced he was racist and evil.

And Biden - oh, lord. She was actually dubious about Biden - but she couldn't bring herself to vote for Trump. He was such a blowhard, he had mean tweets, ect.

Since then? She won't talk about politics, at all. She grumbles about the economy, but... well, I don't see the point in trying to pry at her to get her political views now. She MAY have learned that the Dems don't give a crap about their promises once they get into office, she MAY have learned that the vaunted 'experts' they've got don't have a blasted clue - but as long as she gets her news from the media and televised campaign commercials she's unlikely to ever vote for an R. Best I can hope for is that she sits out the next election...

Rocketeer said...

"...Democrats are habitually more self-critical than their Republican counterparts...."

If by "more self-critical" he means "spend more time driving out heretics" then yeah, he's right.

effinayright said...

Carol said...
That circular firing squad trope sure gets old. You see, they're all shooting at each other! Haha!

And right wingers say the same exact thing about the GOP! Whaddya know!

And none of them have been to a central committee meeting in their life.
*********

Carol, have you ever been to a central committee meeting? What was it like?

MikeR said...

What are the liberals saying about gasoline prices? I thought they really really wanted high gas prices? Now Biden is doing something, bring those prices down somewhat, and it's clearly for politics and the midterm, and they must be livid.

mccullough said...

I agree that “circular firing squad” is hackneyed. JAC makes a good point about the repellant imagery but the metaphor is not only dead it’s decomposed. I never even conjured the image in my mind until he pointed out its impropriety.

Dana tries to circumvent the circular image through verbosity: “Arrayed in traditional circular firing squad formation.” First, there is no “traditional firing squad formation.” Its a cartoon image. Second, it’s concise to say Dems formed a circular firing squad. And “arrayed” is a tired word. No one sounds more erudite nowadays using “array” instead of “arrange.” And the martial etymology of “arrange” at least provides some humor to the “circular firing squad” decomposed mates phone.

The “own goal” metaphor is decomposing. Dana mulches it by trying to save the moribund hockey “hat trick” metaphor.

A good writer can mix decomposing mulch metaphors with decomposed metaphors for humor. But Dana is dull.

Yeah Right Sure said...

"Own-goal hat trick." I like it. Any putz can accidentally catch his goalie unprepared. It takes Bidenesque levels of incompetence to do so thrice. Far more evocative than the trite "circular firing squad" cliche.

Pity poor Milbank. His job of obsequious ass-kissing Dems must have gotten much harder since Biden's election.

alanc709 said...

Several Indian leaders have already said they will not allow abortion centers on their land. They actually want positive growth numbers in their population.

Narayanan said...

Dem leadership in Congress were to suddenly hold a press conference and soberly announce that the latest news compels them to call for a special prosecutor to investigate.
==========
I say bring back Mueller : surely he is the best one : seasoned and well rested and = FJB in brain activity

Joe Smith said...

'The list goes on. Every good intention comes with a curse.'

Kind of my point.

Probably should have used a sarc tag...

MadisonMan said...

I sitting here wondering now if "Hat Trick" is a plural noun. After all, it means three goals. Hmm.. Google says it is singular (the plural is Hat Tricks -- not Hats Trick).

Gunner said...

The Democratic 2004, 2008 and 2020 primaries were mostly focused on complaining about Bush or Trump. Dems barely attacked each other compared to the Republican primaries of 2008, 2012 and 2016. How does that make Dems more self-critical?

Narayanan said...

“circular firing squad”
========
hope the guns have extra large magazine : to balance actually bad shooting skills and firearm discipline

Carol said...

"Carol, have you ever been to a central committee meeting? What was it like?"

It's just the party volunteers trying to recruit candidates and get them elected, and raising money. Not talking policy or knocking their own party's candidates. Leave that to the pundits.

But maybe Dana Milbank's local committee is more exciting.

Mr Wibble said...

A Joe Biden Hat Trick should be an own-goal, assisting another party member in making an own-goal, and getting into a public fight with a fellow party-member.

Dave Begley said...

“Distinguish the man of words from the man of deeds…. To retain their worth, words must be backed up with deeds” Baltasar Gracian, S.J.

“Words and deeds make a perfect man….Words are wise, deeds are mighty.” Baltasar Gracian, S.J.

The only thing that Joe Biden has ever done in his life is to get elected and make himself and his family rich from corruption.

Biden is incapable of doing anything good for the American people. FACT.

Narr said...

My D and lefty F&F pretty much don't want to talk about politics, though they were vocal up until a few months ago. I don't much want to talk about politics either--not with them anyway--so it's all good.

I gloat quietly, with few exceptions. On J6, an old friend I rarely hear from texted me that Trump was now exposed. I replied that the whole system of imperial DC was exposed, and that we are no longer a serious country. I texted him a few months ago--after the latest FJB fiasco (I forget which!) and the Uke invasion-- to rub it in.

The Democrat Party is the longest-running criminal enterprise in the Western world.

Michael K said...

Blogger MikeR said...

What are the liberals saying about gasoline prices? I thought they really really wanted high gas prices? Now Biden is doing something, bring those prices down somewhat, and it's clearly for politics and the midterm, and they must be livid.


Biden is draining the strategic Petroleum Reserve and selling the oil to China.

Seems pretty much in line with Democrat strategy.

Skeptical Voter said...

Give Biden a break? As they used to say in the Army, "I'm fresh out of TS chits--go see the Chaplain." Dana and his friends thrust this geezer on us--and now they want us to give the geezer a break? Ain't gonna happen

The prospect of either the Kackler or Pelosi sitting in the Oval Office is almost too horrible to contemplate---but I'm getting to that point. Hard to see how either one of them mess things up more.

Bunkypotatohead said...

Milbank has always been a lousy writer. Even if you agree with his sentiments, every paragraph is a blend of cliches and mixed metaphors. I doubt an original thought has ever emanated from this guy.

It says a lot about the Post that he's considered one of their prestige contributors, rather than a former employee.

MadTownGuy said...

John Althouse Cohen said...

"Any Democrats criticizing a Democratic president are a “circular firing squad.” (Notice how the media uses that kind of repellent imagery to try to evoke an emotional reaction from you.) But when a Republican president is criticized by Republicans, that’s inspiring and brave."

The circular firing squad metaphor is true to a point, but is more descriptive of the Tragically Woke, who encircle anyone of their number who dares stray from the Narrative, whatever it is that day.

Stephen St. Onge said...

        Given Biden a break? OK.  Which bone?