Without presuming to argue the religious questions addressed in the post, we were very interested in the conclusion of Poputonian's post at Rumproast, which takes a sharply incised line on the GOP conception of the free market.
It's like that scene in Post Office
where Bukowski's finally had enough of that co-worker who's always
muttering insults, and wheels on him only to realize that the guy is
lost in a private fog and has no awareness of him or anything else
around him. It takes a lot of the fight out of you.
It takes no particular perspicacity to note
that our holidays-without-the-holy came about not through the
secularizing efforts of "Northerners and atheists," the gangs of
post-doctoral post-modernists slavering to gnaw on the soft edges of
Christendom, but through the commercializing efforts of the various and
sundry pillars, columns, flutes, and scrolls of American state
capitalism. The gradual erosion of "Merry Christmas" in favor of "Happy
Holidays" doesn't mark a moral retreat in the face of religious
multiculturalism or anti-Christian laïcité. It marks the commerce-driven extension of a shopping season,
one that now extends from before Halloween to the post-New Year sales.
"Happy Holidays" isn't culturally inclusive; it's commercially
Which --- as the sinners of Hadleyburg remarked in a slightly different context --- has got the Hallmark on it.
by Blue | Procrustean economics major and so-called "libertarian" Megan McArdle has attracted more than her usual heaping helping of well-deserved loathing and contumely. I have collected a few of them here for posterity.
by Blue Stockings | I can't stand Sarah Palin, but the squeamishness over Turkeygate doesn't sit well with me. I said why here, but IOZ says it better. Thanksgiving Day seems like the right time to make this point.
Thanksgiving celebrates the day that Pilgrims and Indians sat down to eat together before the gay secularist
Indians divided this country and tried to foist their atheism and
savage decadent culture on the God-fearing pilgrims.
by Blue Stockings | I don't think so. But it's a meme that's emerging since the Lieberman thing and the media are running it for all it's worth. Here's a piece by James Kirchick in The New York Daily News to prove it, all "Obama isn't afraid of the raging, impotent netroots because Joe Lieberman blah blah netroots furious rah rah blah dee blah blee." Read it yourself.
by Damozel | ....wielding Jonah Goldberg's hilarious, oxymoronic diatribe as her personal weapon of choice. As chronicled by Gavin M. of Sadly, No!, this tale is (partly, though only partly) the tale "of her New York rampage, baying through the streets with book
The United States has some serious problems: an ugly war, a shaky
economy, a bad government (on the way out, at last). It's been a rough
eight years. So of course it must be someone's fault, and Daniel Henninger has a simple explanation: blame the atheists.
Especially blame the atheist's successful war on Christmas. He says, "A
nation whose people can't say 'Merry Christmas' is a nation capable of
ruining its own economy."
by Teh Puppet Mistress | I've been steadfastly ignoring this latest wingnut meme all week, but The Toot sees off the most recent attempt of wingnuts who miss blowing hard on the big bullshit horn about their superior superiority and want to feel right-eous and holler and bloviate about something. They need their fix of self-congratulatory self-righteousness.
by Teh Nutroots | This is choice. You need to read the whole thing, but here's a taste. From Ripley at Whiskey Fire:
Is it too much to ask for a Thank You from the corporations that are
receiving bailout money from us? Seriously, they're stroking the
Gov't. for a Trillion dollar-plus Happy Ending, and I haven't heard so
much as a peep from the CEOs, explaining to We the People how they'll
use this money to rectify the economic shit hole they've dug
themselves, and us, into.
by Blue Stockings | So here is IOZ, a king in the land of the disaffected, tilting back his chair and raising his eyebrow at the valiant physicians of the left trying to pump some life back into the economy while brushing a fleck of the gold standard off his velvet sleeve. In a post called Bail. Out, he writes:
Ms. Palin directed most of her media criticism at liberal bloggers,
whom she twice called, “those bloggers in their parents’ basement just
After reeling off a list the credentials of liberalism's most formidable, Hamsher asks:
How would Sarah feel if someone called her an ignorant, freeloading bubble headed piece of trailer park trash whose daddy told the AP she spent the weekend scrambling to return her stolen clothes to the RNC?
by Teh Puppet Mistress | Wingnuts all over the blogosphere are busily whipping themselves up into pleasurable extremes of terror. It's worrying---what do bloggers such as the one cited below intend to achieve, one asks?---but also, if you can preserve your detachment, exceedingly funny in a horrifying kind of a way.
I thought the news of Obama’s victory would strike wingnuts in one
of two ways. Either they’d sit, stinking and unwashed in a corner of
their room, blinking rapidly and speaking in tongues to a headless
Barbie doll — what we might call “the K-Lo Option” — or else they’d
attach a hobby horse to their computer chairs, sort of like those
Cowboy booster seats you used to sit on at the barber shop, and charge
at full gallop into the World Wide Web on a suicidal crusade of blood
and thunder, hacking at heretics and heathens and howling in rage and
agony like a gutted Mel Gibson at the end of Braveheart. It
never dawned on me that they would arise the next day, scratch their
cat under the chin, pour a nice cup of tea, sit down at the keyboard,
and in a prim, dainty, ladylike fashion, go quietly batshit insane, as
though we’d entered an alternate universe where Jessica Fletcher from Murder, She Wrote was the star of Dexter. But color me abashed, because RenewAmerica is proudly offering Mary Mostert’s latest:
As we’ve said before, this wasn’t an election, it was the world’s
longest Usenet thread, and Godwin’s Law is no longer an observation on
probability, it’s a regulation imposed by wingnuts, sort of like those
Homeowner Association bylaws that require everyone to landscape solely
from the pre-approved list of shrubs, and to paint all exterior trim a
by Teh Puppet Mistress | None of us here or at Buck Naked Politics has ever mistaken Barack Obama for a progressive---so we are not going to suffer any pangs of disappointment as he continues to demonstrate this. And make no mistake; he has already begun to do so.
At this point, I am quite prepared to be contented that we have as our president-elect a fearsomely intelligent and--not to sound like Joe Biden--amazingly articulate Democrat and also (and this means a lot as well) the first African-American president ever. Obama must certainly be one of the most intelligent presidents elected in my lifetime. For now, that's change enough and change I can certainly believe in.
I do have Obama-supporting colleagues who are already bracing in anticipation for the inevitable let-down.
Via Balloon Juice, and writing about the Rahm Emanuel pick, Daniel Larison commented: "[Progressives] are going to find themselves very disappointed to discover that
Obama is, in fact, a Chicago politician who is interested in pushing
his agenda rather than being the national psychotherapist they seem
interested in finding."
by Blue Stockings | This comes from Ken Ashford of The Seventh Sense and relates to the heart-breaking outcome of the various actions by states to ban gay marriage:
have nothing against Mormons per se, but since it was the Church of
Latter-Day Saints that funded Prop 8 in California, which isn't even
their state, I think this call for a boycott of Utah might be a good idea....
It's fine if Mormons don't believe in gays having equal rights, but.... wait, that reminds me of one of my favorite scenes from Angels in America:
Harper: I'm a Mormon.
Prior: I'm a homosexual.
Harper: Oh. [pause] In my church we don't believe in homosexuals.
Prior: In my church we don't believe in Mormons. (More)
by The Puppet Mistress |Blue Texan points out that the right wingers have suddenly raised the bar for what constitutes a mandate. All things considered, Obama's historic win was...historic.
I think a "landslide" probably should be reserved for any EV count over 400. By that measure, it wasn't a landslide. But...
Obama received the most votes of any presidential candidate in history -- over 63M, besting W's 62M in 2004.
received a higher percentage of votes (53%) than George W. Bush in '04
or '00, than Clinton in '96 or '92, and more than St. Reagan in 1980
(50%). He matches George HW Bush's mark in '88 -- and posted the
highest percentage by a Democrat since LBJ's 61% in 1964.
received more electoral votes (364) than George W. Bush in '04 (286)
and '00 (271), more than Carter in '76, and more than Nixon in '68,
Kennedy in '60, and Truman in '48.
Obama brought with him
increased gains in the Democratic Senate and House -- the first time
Democrats have extended their majorities in back-to-back elections
since the 1930s.
Bottom line: the size of Obama's win crushes
either of W's, who posted two anemic, 1-state wins, and lost the
popular vote in 2000. And this is the guy who they chriped for years
about having a "mandate" and was going to remake the country with
permanent majorities for the GOP and Peggy Noonan was savoring.
observes that the cry of "he must govern from the middle" is already
going up. But these people don't know where the middle is. The
government owns a majority interest in several heretofore private
banks, is embroiled in foreign adventures for which it cannot pay, and,
from the looks of the various referenda results, is riven with
significant cultural divisions. It looks more like Lord North's Britain
than what we usually think of as America. The new President is better
advised to seek solutions rather than some mythical center line to toe.
Have a look at the prominent conservative thinkers (I know, I know) who are working on a conservative "game plan",
trimming like little Clintons in search of the Joe the Plumber vote
that brought John McCain all the way to 163 electoral votes. They're
looking for the middle because they have nothing else to do. It's a
fittingly harmless occupation for people who are not going to be making
policy anytime soon.
The fact is, the dialogue of conservatives moved so far to the right under Bush---driven by various blowhards and nutjobs, while the more tempered conservatives kept opportunistically quiet as long as they got tax cuts for this silence---that what these people think of as "The Center" remains far to the right of even a moderate Democrat---or even some moderate Republicans. They've lost any sense of where the true center lies. On the wingnut continuum, Andrew Sullivan is a wild-eyed liberal.
I expect that everything that the (according to Paul Krugman and me) far-from-far-left Obama does while in office will cause them to fume and rage impotently. Obama wasn't my first choice---I admit I initially preferred John Edwards and then Hillary---but now I've seen more of him, I'm all for Obama. I would like for his to be a popular administration. But here's the thing: he's never going to be able to please the wingnut base and I hope he won't bother to try.
We've learned repeatedly during this campaign that the ever tone-deaf
McCain drops certain phrases like anvils. From "my friends" to "I'm a
Maverick" to "Joe the Plumber" his ability to turn quaint into quackery
has been a sight to behold.
But the oft turned phrase
"Georgetown Cocktail Parties" that McCain claims to rebel against and
set up as a qualification for Palin is amongst the dumbest.
has been a bigger fixture on "the hot-barbecued sauced weenie on a
toothpick and crab dip circuit" than John Sidney McCain the Third?
one thing we've learned about Palin, if she showed up at a party thrown
by Sally Quinn, you know she'd bring whatever random daughter who isn't
pregnant to go with her and put the whole tab on the State of Alaska.
Oh Cecilia, bless your heart. We have only been at this for two years, sweetheart. There were over
40 debates during the primaries and most recently we have had three
Presidential debates and one Vice Presidential debate. Honey, I trust
you can read. Please do because this is important. And I am not
trying to be mean or dismissive...
by The Puppet Mistress | I'm going to agree with Thers:
Pretty much all you need to know about why the GOP is losing this election is to be found in the high-fiving among "conservatives" about this interview
where a ridiculous local TV host from Orlando asks Joe Biden completely
asinine leading wingnut questions about why Barack Obama is just like
Karl Marx. Biden came across like a grownup; the interviewer looked
like, well, someone from the Onion News Network, only not funny and all too real.
The only part where I disagree is this: the self-satirizing interviewer was funny. I doubt it did Biden any harm with non-Republicans.