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September 5, 2008

omg god more convention schma schma

There are all kinds of arguable policy issues contained in McCain's long, slow march through his speech last night.  But really, I don't know if it's worth going into them at this time, because the speech was just so bad.  I'm sure that it appealed to who it's going to appeal to, and the media will jump all over some post-RNC bounce that will happen, but it was a tepid speech tepidly delivered.  Even the crowd in St. Paul, which up until then had been convinced that whichever convention crowd cheered louder and longer wins the election, sat on its hands -- they were stunned into silence, and then polite applause and obligatory whooping.

And most notable was how glaringly different it was in tone and content from all the other speeches of the RNC -- it was civil.  Maybe that's why the crowd couldn't get behind it, because McCain was saying "please" and "thank you", and they had been conditioned to rewarding assholery with standing o's.

But, man, they gave him a speech that read like it was put together with masking tape, and then fed him a pint of vodka and a handful of vicodin before he went on.

The best line of the night is Jeffery Toobin's reaction (scroll down):

I thought it was the worst speech by a nominee that I've heard since Jimmy Carter in 1980.

And, I didn't see it, but apparently Cindy McCain didn't do so much better.

Posted by mrbrent at 11:28 AM

September 4, 2008

the physical appearance of mccain

So I've "made some hay" over the fact that John McCain has no neck.

Upon review, he does indeed have a neck -- but, from certain angles, especially in still photographs, his neck is masked by collar, or jowls, or just otherwise hidden.

But!  The shape of his pate combined with his mysteriously receding eyebrows make him look like an antiperspirant.  Or is that a deodorant?

Whichever.  He's knocking it out of the park!

Posted by mrbrent at 10:43 PM

rnc: mccain

This kinda counts as a "retweet", whatever that means, but I'm half watching the McCain speech at the RNC, and, even as he lies and lies and lies, I'm feeling sorry for the old cuss.  He's obviously running in the wrong century.

Sure, there's a lot of "my country" this, and "my country" that, but as he croaks out the words (and is interrupted by protesters), I'm all like, "Awww.  Should someone get him a chair?"  But, he didn't have a chair for years -- in Hanoi!!!  So old white guy stands.

After all, there was a version of him that was not odious.  Granted, it lasted about nine months, in between the whole Keating Five disgrace and the Karl-Rove-bitched-me disgrace, but still.  There were a couple hundred days that I respected the guy.

Right now, he's referencing specific anecdotes, of dudes who did this or that.  And he's not moving his lips!

But he used to have a neck.  We will crush Grampa, and, right before we dance, we will respectfully... something.  Or just dance.

Posted by mrbrent at 10:29 PM

overcompensating on palin

As long as we are all going to spend our time hating on the media, let's link up this Gawker post, and then agree with it unreservedly -- some folk been drinking the kool-aid, and they all wield microphones and word processors for a living:
We are rarely, these days, surprised by much.  Especially the behavior of the national political press. We devoted a couple paragraphs yesterday to predicting their reaction to Alaska Governor Sarah Palin's speech before the Republican National Convention last night, but this morning we are having a genuine crazy pills moment.

Are we trapped in Peggy Noonan's bubble?  Seriously, people?  The speech blew you away?  It was a generic stump speech with a couple killer lines, delivered competently.  It was the Republican equivalent of John Kerry's speech at the DNC, just given by someone America doesn't hate (yet) while the national networks were listening.

One of my more smarter friends reacted to the speech with yet another "knocked it out of the park", and I felt a little weird disagreeing, given the smarter-than-I-am nature of our friendship.  But, yeah, she managed not to puke all over herself on national television, and therefore that was the best speech in the history of presidential campaigning, ever, and in the future, as well.

And another bit relevant to the media overcompensating for their initial hateful reporting of facts would be this smarty from Roger Simon.

Posted by mrbrent at 12:34 PM

palin: out of the park

So I did watch RNC night two last night, against my will.  No matter which room of our flat I would hide in, the screechy voice of Gov. Sarah Palin would find me and then my fillings would start hurting.  It was an aggressively bar-lowering speech, packed with the applause lines you'd expect, and the crowd (which crowd apparently brought some empty seats with them) roared like they watched the DNC and were gonna show them how a crowd eats up a speech.  I especially liked the parts where she talked about how she "raised taxes as governor, supported the Bridge to Nowhere before she opposed it, pursued pork-barrel projects as mayor [and] tried to ban books at the local library".  Because you're not gonna pull one over on the American people!  Except like always.

But she did hit it out of the park!

I did watch the Giuliani, but with the sound turned off and my back to the TV -- I'm reasonably certain that I already know what the words "nine eleven" sound like (in fact, I'm still taking the terrible piano lessons of 9/11).  Best line on his speech:

With Rudy's speech, to riff on the brilliance of the immortal Molly Ivins, I think I preferred this speech in the original German.

But he hit it out of the park!

And tonight, we all look forward to the speech of the candidate, wherein there will be a park, and hitting.

Posted by mrbrent at 7:38 AM

September 3, 2008

jury duty

Good morning.

I am leaving for jury duty.  I am gonna put some shitbirds in the hoosegow.  And the righteous?  The righteous will skate, on my jury duty.

So, look out, shitbirds.

Posted by mrbrent at 7:42 AM

September 2, 2008

jerry reed

I'm not sure if this is a bonus or not, but for the first time, Twitter has actually delivered me news, and the news is shitty -- Jerry Reed has passed away.

Jerry Reed was cool enough to break my "no obits" rule -- it may sound weird, but growing up with the Jerry Reed character (all his roles were Jerry Reed characters) in the movie theater and on the television anchored the positive side of the Good Ole Boy scale.  It is because of Jerry Reed that I was always sad that I did not grow up to be tall, all elbows and knees.

He was also a helluva songwriter and performer, but that appreciation came later in life.

That just sucks.

Posted by mrbrent at 4:55 PM

what could be better than palin? bachmann talking about palin

I'm trying to stay away from endless posts about Gov. Palin, but, when God gives you lemons, you suck those lemons raw like you might never see one again, so you don't get rickets.

This is what's too good not to link -- GOP surrogates getting hammered, by a news anchor and James Carville, respectively, over the talking points defending the selection of Gov. Palin as presumptive veep-nominee.  Especially delicious is the second video, in which Carville thoughtfully discusses the issues with Rep. Michele Bachmann, long my favorite crazy politician.

As thoroughly as Carville shreds the arguments of Rep. Bachmann, the one refutation that Carville chooses not to employ is, "You, Representative Bachmann, are more qualified to be vice president than Governor Palin, and you are a person-sized bag of crazy."

The pause that clouds Carville's face before he almost regretfully launches into it is worth the three minutes it takes to watch it.

Posted by mrbrent at 12:34 PM

sarah palin -- jennifer?

Over the weekend, I thought that the most interesting thing that I could say about the selection of Gov. Sarah Palin as vice presidential candidate was, "Right now, in LA, a thousand unemployed screenwriters are throwing their spec scripts out the window, as reality steals their high concept.  Each one of the screenplays are titled 'President Mom'".

That was over the weekend, two days ago.  Then yesterday happened, which was not a good day to be the person that the McCain campaign asked to vet Gov. Palin prior to her selection, if that person actually exists.

I dunno if she'll actually step down, as some whisper she might, because having a veep candidate with specious qualifications and a variety of skeletons in the closet is nowhere near as bad as admitting that you muffed the selection of your veep, which would verify to the world that your campaign is a laughingstock.

Whichever.  May we have more interesting days, and may Sen. McCain soon perfect his new squirm that he debuted Friday afternoon.

Posted by mrbrent at 10:31 AM

September 1, 2008


This may be something that has already made the rounds, but in the course of some political attack on Obama not worth delineating, McCain campaign manager Rick Perry actually said the following sentence:
But this is business as usual in McCainworld.

Why would a campaign, to all appearances (and despite media coverage) rudderless and doomed, coin a phrase like "McCainworld"?  It is awkward and easily mocked, and its only utility seems to be for it to be used to beat the McCain campaign about the head and neck.  It is a gift to me, and it is pretty and shiny and I love it very much.  It is T minus X until the photoshop of McCain's neckless head over Yul Brynner's body hits the Net.

And actually, the attack is worth repeating, as the GOP claims that the Obama campaign is worser than the McCain campaign because Obama/Biden did not fly to the Gulf Coast and try to look busy as they stood in the way of Gustav preparations, as McCain and his ward Sarah Palin did -- another winner!

I don't want to cross the line, as some has, hammering the McCain campaign over Gustav.  But I would like to remind that the reason that Gustav is relevant is because three years ago, the Bush Administration let a hurricane take a major American city off the map, blithely and without admitting responsibility.  And the direct cause of that was the long-held tenet of the GOP that government must not only be small but filled with political cronies, and therefore incompetent.  It's the most galling act (or act of omission, as it were) of our government that I've lived through, and the fact that the people did not take to the streets at the time was a failure of the people.

And most importantly, the small-government/fuck-things-up tenet is central to the McCain campaign, and is one of the reasons, along with his ridiculous speciousness, that he should not be elected.

How would things be in McCainworld?  Hurricane Katrina.

Posted by mrbrent at 9:41 AM