Oh. My. God.

Andrew Sullivan:

“I’m struck too by his Niebuhrian grasp of the inherent tragedy of wielding power in an age of terror – a perspective his more jejune and purist critics simply fail to understand.”

Don’t even be tempted to read the rest. Life is short. Shoot carpet staples into your gums, instead. You’ll be better off.

Ok, gonna pull An Almost As Lazy as Atrios maneuver here, and ask my readers to provide in comments the most egregious BRIEF examples of fawning/lying/credulity/stupidity/fuckery over Dear Leader’s war speech they can find. I am looking for one or two lines, fairly big names, and a link. Tweets are definitely allowed. Consider it Biggest Asshole Lite. My regular readers know exactly where to start looking, so this shouldn’t be too hard.

Sully is going to be hard to beat, but that’s also what I said about Rebecca Solnit and we know how that turned out.

Commenters who just want to mock these assholes are, as ever, most welcome. Extra points for withering contempt and wanton cruelty.

Ok to use html in comments to create pretty links. Otherwise, just provide the URL. Providing the URL for a tweet with no embellishments will nicely embed the tweet. Be brave; I’ll fix your fuck-ups.

We’ll vote on Twitter when it seems appropriate to do so.

Everybody play. No sitting on the sidelines.  Leave your wet blanket at home. Things outside the playful spirit might just get deleted.



People who are mystified that their helpful examples of good post-speech commentary, or defenses of bad speech commentators cannot be found here should re-read the rules.

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42 Responses to Oh. My. God.

  1. eamonpmurphy says:

    ‘One first impression left by President Obama’s much-anticipated speech re-casting U.S. counter-terrorism policy is that of the contrast between Bush’s swagger and Obama’s anguish over the difficult trade-offs that perpetual war poses to a free society. It could scarcely be starker.’ –Jane Mayer

  2. p-squared says:

    here’s a spate from Speechboy in the “what’s left unsaid, but obviously present between the lines, is coincidentally exactly what I claim to want to hear” category:

    bonus: mike’s response to the heckling moment!
    “This woman yelling is wrong . . . and should listen to the next sentence of the speech”
    “This woman really needs to be kicked out.”
    “This is atrocious. I can’t believe this woman is being allowed to interrupt POTUS.”


  3. ohtarzie says:

    • ohtarzie says:

      Holy Crap!!! Free speech!!! For an antiwar protester!!! OMG OMG OMG!

      Fucking clown.

      • Fitzwhillikers says:

        Also note how Dear Leader patronizingly referred to a 60 year old as “young lady.”

      • ohtarzie says:

        He’s frequently very patronizing with women in public settings in ways Hayes would bake him for if Republican. White House is said to be a terrible environment for women.

  4. Brendan Moody says:

    I’m beginning to think Obama could kill and eat a live puppy in the course of a speech, and liberals would be OK with that, provided he said that of course he’d PREFER a strict vegan diet, but some puppies are asking for it, and he’s haunted by their deaths. Then he’d close by saying he wanted to have a national discussion about the vexed issue of puppy-eating.

    “The inherent tragedy of wielding power in an age of terror.” Words keep failing me. Has there ever been a clearer demonstration that people will accept even the most obviously staged display of contrition if it comes from someone they’re predisposed to like? I bet if Obama told them he didn’t even WANT to be president but felt a moral obligation, they’d believe that too, and think it mattered.

    • Tom Allen says:

      But, but — Mitt Romney would have eaten two live puppies, and only a purist would refuse to at least pick up a fork.

      Charles Pierce, of course, blames the voters for not being good enough for Obama:

      “A long time ago, I wondered if this president wasn’t offering to let the country off easy for the crimes it committed against itself out of its rage and its fear, but which also had committed fundamental misdemeanors long before that rage and fear drove it to the more serious crimes….

      “We are the people who strung the tightrope on which he now walks, and on which every president after him will walk as well. That’s why half the speech defended what he’d done, while the other half tried to define the limitations of what he can do.”


      • redscott says:

        I saw that too. The standard defense of Mr. O is that he couldn’t have accomplished anything more (on any issue), and one of the variations of that argument is that heart really, really is in the right place and could produce miracles if not for the fallen, benighted citizens surrounding him. I was disappointed to see Pierce do it, though. He’s not afraid to criticize Obama, and I was a little surprised to see an argument that effectively says that Obama’s failures here are because he’s better than we are. It’s pretty boot-licky when you think about it.

      • ohtarzie says:

        “He’s not afraid to criticize Obama, and I was a little surprised to see an argument that effectively says that Obama’s failures here are because he’s better than we are.”

        Surprised? Blaming we, Obama’s terrible children, for Obama’s faults is his WHOLE shtick. It’s his thing.

    • ohtarzie says:

      Hi Brendan:

      I was so busy scanning for quotes that I missed this when you first commented. This is great stuff. The first paragraph had me laughing out loud. More please.

  5. Jeff Nguyen says:

    What was the Guatanamo detainees’ reaction to Obama’s speech?

    Per Jane Sutton, Huffington Post, “Detainees follow all coverage of Guantanamo closely, including today’s speech, and the post-speech commentary, analysis and editorials,” said Navy Captain Robert Durand, a spokesman for the Guantanamo detention operation. “There is interest and discussion, but no discernible reaction,” he said.

    I guess it’s hard to have an in-depth discussion when you’re starving and being force fed.

    • Jeff Nguyen says:

      Edit: Meant to say, “I guess it’s hard to have an in-depth discussion when you’re on a hunger strike and being force fed.

  6. The Medea mocking by the cool kids is too easy so I’ll go with the, “Obama didn’t shoot her on the spot! He listened! That proves we’re all in this together!” tact taken by Maddow, Hayes, and Sir Stephen Walt:

  7. I’m not going to read this and I have no idea what a Bob Dreyfuss is so it probably doesn’t meet the big name standard. Still, this is such a perfect Nation headline: Global War on Terror, R.I.P

    • ohtarzie says:

      That is a most excellent entry and I certainly can’t fault you for not reading it. I appreciate when they top load the assholery so I don’t have to go digging.

  8. alhambralahomo says:

    Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CODEPINK, tried to derail President Obama’s counterterrorism speech by rudely interrupting him.

    As he spoke about wanting to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay and mentioned being limited by Congress, Benjamin interrupted.

    “Excuse me, President Obama, you are commander in chief … it’s you, sir,” she shouted. As she continued, shouting about the hunger strikers there, Obama tried to keep speaking.

    It’s a miracle no speeches were derailed by the attempted speech derailer. One wonders if a president will ever be able to implement any changes liberals want, if they keep interrupting him before he can even announce them.

    • Satchel Paige says:

      Try to remember that “Medea” and her pal Jodie Moore stumped for Obama’s Afghanistan Maneuver (invastion, destruction, murder) because it was “good for Afghani women’s rights.”

      • ohtarzie says:

        Yeah, I vaguely recall that. Was contemplating a piece on Medea and if I do ti, will include that.

        She’s problematic, for sure.

  9. alhambralahomo says:

    If it ain’t irrationally partisan Rethuglicans who are preventing him from ending “the war”, it’s irrationally anti war hecklers. Speech hecklers and Republicans, two unassailable foes.

    This is kind of an ED version of phallic power worship. A what might have been mourning. Not so much, look at his glorious muscles and ballet murder jumps, look at him thrust into and out of liberty. More, how can a man be expected to make love to a 1k-ton statue? Or, that little lady keeps henpecking him! He’ll never get it up! He can’t make love to her with his liberal agenda if she won’t even let him take his suit off.

    They’re all just projecting the memory of their over correcting mother from their childhood, onto medea. If she would have made obscene air licks with her tongue and googoo eyes at Obama, they wouldn’t have found it remarkably different from their own gestures.

  10. That whole thread is precious nonsense about respect. Seder points out the interruption is part and parcel of an extreme power asymmetry. Maxwell doesn’t seem to engage on that point at all. Because you know, it’d undermine her completely.

    The whole “respect the office of the president” genre of idiocy just makes my teeth grind.

    • ohtarzie says:

      “The whole ‘respect the office of the president’ genre of idiocy just makes my teeth grind.

      Yeah. It’s obvious that they see themselves as courtiers and not journalists.

  11. alhambralahomo says:

    From a man who until his president’s lips said otherwise, never heard of an unlawful detention or drone strike, or war, for that matter, by democrats, that he didn’t vocally adore

    insane rage is bad so,

  12. alhambralahomo says:


    HAROLD KOH: He said that Congress had declared war against a very narrow group on Sept. 2001, al-Qaida, the Taliban, and associated forces. And he said he wants that war to end, and that at the very end of the speech, which is far and away the most important part, he said because the state of perpetual war distorts freedom, he wants it to end.

    HAROLD KOH, Former State Department Official: I think there were two important things.

    The first was that he made the speech at all. This is a time when lot of other things are going on. He could have avoided it. But what he did was, he not only owned it, but he framed it and explained the strategy he needs going forward.

    The second thing was, he rejected the construct of a perpetual, global, boundless war on terror. And he narrowed it to what we’re really trying to do, which is to fight and defeat al-Qaida, the Taliban, and associated forces.


    The Taliban. Un-“defeated” after a decade. Liberals should never talk of defeating arch conservatives, at home or abroad. Only of converting them to hedonistic porn merchants. That’s all they want anyway. It’s not enough to subdue them with weapons or elections or economics. If they aren’t posing for your porn, they might still be up to something. Also, if there’s one bomb, back in the aircraft carriers will have to go!

  13. alhambralahomo says:

    It’s one thing for psycho conservatives to claim we need to crush arch conservatives abroad. But I think liberals are more willing to accept that it is a just and necessary war, to fight for the right of women in repressive societies to walk around topless, while it is just plain old silly to insist that people have the right to be newd and lewd in public, in our free society. That’s just rude.

  14. ohtarzie says:

    • ohtarzie says:

      David Corn never met an anti-war protester he couldn’t hate. He even did it under Bush. Clearly doesn’t even know who Medea Benjamin even is.

      • Here’s Corn’s long-form genuflection: http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2013/05/obama-speech-drones-civil-liberties

        “By handing responsibility for drone strikes to the military, Obama is helping CIA chief John Brennan, who would like to see his agency move out of the paramilitary business and devote more resources to its traditional tasks of intelligence gathering and analysis.”

        Which is either a patent lie or our overlords are all schizophrenics. Brennan is one of the guys who helped para-militarize the CIA! This was another theme of the day yesterday, of both the speech and the turd-polishing: that there are two people in the Oval Office, both named Barack Obama. One hates what the other is doing, but can’t stop it. Paints a picture of a government with a dissociative disorder.


        “The civil libertarians will scoff at half measures. But Obama, at the least, is showing that he does ponder these difficult issues in a deliberative manner and is still attempting to steer the nation into a post-9/11 period. That journey, though, may be a long one.”

        The fantasy continues.

      • ohtarzie says:

        It’s shit like this that just makes clear that at least many of these people are not simply deluded fools in a system that rewards deluded fools. They’re fucking liars. This is a fucking liar at the peak of his powers. The CIA’s “traditional tasks of intelligence gathering and analysis.” Are you fucking kidding me? It’s a good thing his readers are SO FUCKING STUPID.

    • alhambralahomo says:

      I love me some overly aggressive crowd control. I love the part where they start controlling the crowd. I hope it’s coming up soon, this crowd seems a bit stale without that great controlling. That meeting was so shit, it didn’t even have control and the crowd was there for the whole thing, uncontrolled. I always get a little scared when I don’t see security guards in sufficient number to perform crowd control on the audience. That old lady, what a crazy crowd she was…they just let that crowd get outta control, she was all like, uncontrolled, I’m so uncontrolled, by any security guards.
      This one may have bowel, bladder or boner issues, too.

  15. gRegor says:

    This is not exactly what you asked for, but I loved Medea’s response to Huffington Post:

  16. alhambralahomo says:

    This one sucks and I’m only putting it up because I actually bothered to look it up. (really trying to avoid obligations)

    Also, she actually stole that model from Owillis. She was inspired by another one of his she retweeted. This is what she came up with on her own. The problem with utter morons is they don’t fall from as high.

  17. alhambralahomo says:

    It is depraved that someone who wants to be taken seriously, however out of it, as sully does, would ever use the word jejune, after it had finally been buried by Blossom for showing a starry eyed naive teen girl (Blossom) using it with her mentally challenged brother Joey.
    I had to look up what it really means. I got as far as wiktionary.
    Regardlesss of jejune’s own jejune meaning, its etymology does have something useful.

    From Proto-Indo-European *Hyeh₂ǵ-yu-, adjectival form of *Hyeh₂ǵ-ye/o- (“to sacrifice”). Cognates include Sanskrit यजति (yájati, “he worships, he sacrifices”), Ancient Greek ἅγιος (hágios, “sacred, holy”).

    For the naive more Catholic than the Pope Catholic in Sullivan, a liberational conservative who can’t make up his mind so falls back on bushism while claiming to do the opposite, the unappreciated ironies of his independent arrivals at commonplace conclusions always yield. They always yield.

    If the president’s mindlessly worshipful purist critics would only see him as an aristocrat touched by divine legitimacy, they’d realize that his fall from grace is also his destiny and prostrate to his journey of impossible redemption, unlike critical minded Sullivan, who actually, really gets the man. As Niebuhr intended.

    Maher may have a point. There’s really no getting in between a man and his religion. The more he falls, the more he loves.

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