Help Mom! There are Liberals under my Bed! Best book you've ever read: Help Mom! There are Liberals under my Bed!

By Rowlfe on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 01:06 am:

By droopy on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 02:08 am:

    howard dean doesn't want you to let those conservative bastards get away with this.

By semillama on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 10:59 am:

    Shouldn't they be more afraid of the Republicans in the closet?

By Rowlfe on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 11:23 am:

By Antigone on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 01:21 pm:

    This whole culture war is the story of Cain and Abel, writ large and small, every day.

    Conservatives say, "Oh, liberals have children's books with their propaganda, why can't we?" As if it's somehow bad to teach children to love and be happy. So they make this kind of drivel, sewing the seeds of mistrust and hate, in some sad urge for revenge.

    Cain, jealous of his brother Abel, lashes out.

By semillama on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 01:27 pm:

    The hate, venom and bile is so transparent - it's very sad.

By Antigone on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 01:35 pm:

    And speaking of a really bizzare O'Reilly flub: linky

By Spider on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 02:37 pm:

    Did anyone see Christopher Hitchens on the Daily Show last night? Can you recap?

By droopy on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 02:42 pm:

    i didn't. and i can't follow rowlfe's link. be liberal and fill a guy in.

By Rowlfe on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 03:21 pm:

By Rowlfe on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 03:23 pm:

    basically, Jon asked Hitchens to explain why the iraq war is good...
    and then Jon whipped his ass. usually he softballs most of his guests, and its not like he laid into him harsh or anything, but he schooled him good.

By Rowlfe on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 03:43 pm:

    Stewart: The people who say we shouldn't fight in Iraq aren't saying it's our fault. . . That is the conflation that is the most disturbing. . .

    Hitch: Don't you hear people saying. . .

    Stewart: You hear people saying a lot of stupid [bleep]. . . But there are reasonable disagreements in this country about the way this war has been conducted, that has nothing to do with people believing we should cut and run from the terrorists, or we should show weakness in the face of terrorism, or that we believe that we have in some way brought this upon ourselves. . .

    Hitch: [Sputter]

    Stewart: They believe that this war is being conducted without transparency, without credibility, and without competence...

    Hitch: I'm sorry, sunshine... I just watched you ridicule the president for saying he wouldn't give. . .

    Stewart: No, you misunderstood why. . . . That's not why I ridiculed the president. He refuses to answer questions from adults as though we were adults and falls back upon platitudes and phrases and talking points that does a disservice to the goals that he himself shares with the very people needs to convince.

    [Audience erupts in applause]

    Hitch: You want me to believe you're really secretly on the side of the Bush administration. .

    Stewart: I secretly need to believe he's on my side. He's too important and powerful a man not to be.

By Nate on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 03:44 pm:

    Jon whipped his ass? it wasn't a debate, by any stretch of (even the liberal) imagination.

    Hitchens made solid points for why we took out Saddam, which Jon didn't answer (he made jokes.)

    He then lectures Hitchens about how he feels the current administration has handled the war itself poorly (which Hitchens said towards the beginning of the interiew, anyway.)

    He then challenges a mischaracterization that Hitchens makes about Jon's point of view.

    Both of those lectures are forceful and articulate and represent well Jon's intellect. But there was no debate. Jon didn't counter any of Hitchens's real points. He avoided most by making a joke or (ironically, given the earlier bit) talking to Hitchens as if Hitchens was retarded.

By patrick on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 04:48 pm:

    Hitchens, never heard of this guy but did enjoy the conversation. two of the most solid points made were Hitchen's 4 pretexts for invasion and Jon's criticism of Bush's inability to answer questions from the media as Jon said.

    likewise, didnt see any ass kicking going on per se

By Antigone on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 05:03 pm:

    Just so ya'll know, you can get an HDTV rip via BitTorrent from of the previous night's Daily Show just about every day.

    And it was just about as much of a debate and one can get with Hitchens. He should have a big red H for hypocrite on his chest for his constant flip flops, from being an outspoken antisemite to criticising Cindy Sheehan for being one based on zero evidence. Misdirection is the only way to deal with such a bloviating liver shriveled whack nut. Stewart did a good job.

By Antigone on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 05:05 pm:

    And, btw, have you all seen "The Aristocrats"? If not, do, you scat munching sisterfuckers.

By Rowlfe on Friday, August 26, 2005 - 05:40 pm:

    drunk/retarded, might as well be the same thing...

    having been watching what Hitch has been saying while doing the rounds on other shows, 'mischaracterizing jon's point of view' is one of the main things he's been doing, and Jon quietly and politely took it down.

    like Tig said, how Jon handled him was way more debate than most people will get out of him. the ass whipping isn't in the traditional sense you'd see in a debate, but I saw it as one. in the traditional sense, I'd say he was at least disarmed.

    That Hitchens ran off at the end and kept getting bothered by how people clapped underscores how much Hitch knew Jon had spanked him towards the end. Jon spoke like it was about Bush, but it was really about Hitch and how he's been doing the exact same thing for a while now.

By Nate on Saturday, August 27, 2005 - 12:26 pm:

    So what you are basically saying is that misdirection and Bush v. Media style avoiding the real debate is ok when done from the left.

    That's just typical lefty bullshit. It is bad when they do it, but since we're correct it is ok when we do it. It's like a southparkian plot.

    It would be great if you guys applied your critical thinking skills to everything you hear or read, not just what you hear or read from your enemies.

By dave. on Saturday, August 27, 2005 - 02:20 pm:

    it's a comedy show, an interview show, not a debate show. i think, when you get right down to it, jon doesn't like attacking people without the cover of humor. he's not naturally mean like o'reilly or hannity. he has a conscience. occasionally, he can go for the throat, like he did at the end or like he did on crossfire.

    but you're right, nate. it irritates me when i read or see liberals use those tactics when they don't have to. i think we're basically right on nearly all of the major political and economic issues. the only reason our policies have failed historically is that they are constantly undermined by republican influence. on the other hand, the reason republican policies fail is because the public eventually comes to realize that they really only benefit a small but powerful percentage of the society -- the true republican base.

By Antigone on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 02:35 am:

    Actually, I didn't see much misdirection at all on Stewart's part. He did address Hitchen's points, rather directly at times. I just said what I said to piss you off, Nate. A litte misdirection on my part, but you're such an easy dupe when it comes to your tired "liberals are sooooooo hypocritical" meme.

    Sorry. Couldn't resist.

    Anyway, latest righty outrage: Ann Coulter says citizens of NYC would immediately surrender if attacked again by terrorists, basically calling them cowards. This includes, apparently, all NYC based soldiers in Iraq and everyone who experienced 9/11.

By Nate on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 05:38 am:

    well, ann coulter is a vapid hole.

    He didn't address Hitchen's points. as an exercise, I recommend printing out a transcript of the interview and highlighting each point and counter point. It may make it easier to use multiple colored markers. Be creative!

    In '98, congress, without exception, voted on a bill that stated removing Sadam regime should be a priority of the US. Jon's counterpoint -> c'mon, that was totally symbolic!

    Sadam was harboring and aiding serious, high ranking officers in the same organizations that caused attacks on american soil. Jon's counterpoint -> What country in the middle east doesn't? I could name 4 guys in Qatar!

    There, I did most of the work for you.

    And is it just me, or is Jon editing the interviews more since they moved over to the new set? It seems like he's actually going longer with the interviews and then editing the for time.

    Don't get me wrong, I think Jon Stewart is brilliant and a true american hero. I just think that to suggest that he handed Hitchen's his ass on a silver platter is a mischaracterization.

    when was a duped, tig? when you realized you didn't have a leg to stand on and decided to slip into the ha ha i was just joking routine?

    i'm tired of the liberals are so hypocritical shit too. so shape the fuck up. cuntbreath.

By Rowlfe on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 02:17 pm:

    "it's a comedy show, an interview show, not a debate show"

    thats it right there, he weasels out of everyone both left and right and concedes a lot to people he doesnt agree with. i'd say he willingly gets his ass kicked all the time. maybe he just doesnt feel like getting into it, maybe he just doesnt have a good argument, but it happens.
    Santorum, Goldberg, Kristol and others have had a free pass.

    When Stewart goes after anyone, its usually in an "ive had enough" breaking point halfway during an interview. its rarely ever like when he was on Crossfire. in other words, this discussion was just filler from both sides until halfway through.
    the second Jon got serious, it was over for Hitch. thats just the way I saw it..

    I think his jokes actually made a point, even if they were jokes. When someone like spunky brought up 'well clinton in 98 so blah' i dont address it, because I'm not a clinton defender, so it doesnt turn me into a hypocrite. and I really don't think Jon is either. i thought the joke was a concession to Hitch/tongue in cheek. I dont think there was a debate to be made with Jon on that point.

    the '4 guys in Qatar' though, is a "your point is moot" response. considering Saudi Arabians were the hijackers, and that theres just as many terrorists if not more in other countries, but they're ignored...
    going from WMDs and ties with Al Qaeda to a justification based on a handful of insurgents that weren't really significant until the war was brought to them isn't a strong argument, and Jon basically treated it as such.

    in other words, to me those points werent really dodged or ignored so much as he didn't feel they were worth addressing in detail in a short interview that he probably didnt see himself getting serious about. but when it got near the end, Hitch went strawman, and Jon cut him down for it, then cut to the core of everything Hitch has been saying on TV for a good long while, which to me is far more significant and noteworthy in my view of it as an asskicking than whatever points Hitch made earlier.

By Rowlfe on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 02:31 pm:

    "weren't really significant "

    to clarify here, I mean werent significant to the US as a justification for war. i'd wager that a lot of Iraq hawks still cant name the current insurgent leaders.

    i do agree that there is too much misdirection from the left in a lot of places. i think its them trying to play the republicans game, which is no justification except for the fact that when done smartly... it works.

    the bigger problem is the mass confusion. its fully engulfed the left and the seen is now planted among the right wing as well.

    the Sheehan stuff is starting to bug me now, the only sympathy i have for her is that right wingers are going overboard in how they are attacking her, she's getting a swelled head about her relevance to the anti-war movement, and she's confusing a lot of people, including me, about what the left wing's position should be about Iraq. a lot of us are saying 'pull out now' at the same time they are criticizing how much worse whenever something gets leaked about Bush's hopes to leave as soon as possible. we're not offering any solutions, and maybe its because there isn't one, and maybe its because we're too busy shaking our heads to come up with anything better than bullshit about timelines and allies. the Democrats want to have their cake and eat it too: point out the real failings and why this war could be lost and how it gets more and more comparable to Vietnam - but at the same time act patriotic like its winnable, or that things would be different right now if Kerry was running the show. they want the troops to come home one day, and say that 'we broke it we bought it, we should send 100000 more troops' the next. saying a draft would be needed to bring up troop numbers one day, but also being anti-draft.

By Rowlfe on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 02:50 pm:

    question for you nate:

    I'm sure you recognize how left wingers waffle about the daily show. when he's making big points we talk about how he's a better journalist than the real news, but when he softballs Kerry or like with Hitch, we'll say "its a comedy show". I know it frustrates people because its an easy out. But do you firmly take one side or the other about Stewarts role?

    I'm sure I've waffled in the past, and I'm just as confused now. Overall its comedy that I'll only take so seriously (since I know he'll make factual errors in order to get a punchline), but it does have enough of an influence that criticism of Stewart as a journalist is completely reasonable, which is why I don't take issue with you getting upset by him jokes to counter Hitch.

By Spider on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 04:20 pm:

    Is there a link to Jon's Crossfire appearance?

By Spider on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 04:50 pm:

    Never mind.

By Antigone on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 06:18 pm:

    "In '98, congress, without exception, voted on a bill that stated removing Sadam regime should be a priority of the US. Jon's counterpoint -> c'mon, that was totally symbolic! "

    That's "not addressing" the point? That totally addresses the point. The '98 resolution was completely symbolic because nobody thought we'd be stoopid enough to occupy the country! Bush even said in 2000 (two years later, if the math escapes you) that "we're not in the business of nation building," remember? Congress passes bullshit resolutions all the time. Why would that particular one be any different? I know you're not so naive that you think every congressional resolution is the sincere, heartfelt expression of the congresscritter's convictions. They're never geared to gather political brownie points, no! For fuck sake, man.

    "Sadam was harboring and aiding serious, high ranking officers in the same organizations that caused attacks on american soil. Jon's counterpoint -> What country in the middle east doesn't? I could name 4 guys in Qatar!"

    Stewart's comeback was quite valid. It highlights the pointlessness of that particular reason for invading and occupying the country. Though I think he could have made a better comeback, possibly this: "the terrorist training camps in Iraq, all of which we knew about, were all in the no fly zones, which WE CONTROLLED. WE COULD HAVE DESTROYED THEM AT ANY TIME WITHOUT INVADING."

By Rowlfe on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 07:55 pm:

    I was wondering why tig had a different take on 'thats totally symbolic' than I did, and rewatched the interview to try and figure out why.

    first off, fuckup by me for incorrectly remembering that first part of the "symbolic" part of interview as a joke and trying to explain it away anyways. that wasnt a joke by any stretch. heres a better recap:

    Hitch: anyone who wanted to complain about policy against Iraq should have written to their representative in 1998
    Jon: noone wrote because it was an obviously symbolic thing to do. noone thought anyone would be crazy to get into the Churchillian method of re-drawing the map the way we think it was meant to be drawn.

    I guess the reason I remembered it as a sort of passing agreement is because it concedes that Clinton didn't make it clear to anyone whatsoever that iraq was a real concern and that it was going to be dealt with. Also because after this Jon says "I agree with all your premises, I disagree that going into Iraq was the way to clarify them" or something like that.

    As for Qatar, before Hitch talks about there being terrorists in Iraq, he said that its stupid when people say that the war is what is bringing terrorist into Iraq. Which is a dumb statement in my opinion, and it prompted Jon's response. Just as Jon was going to respond something further about 'old school terrorism', Hitch himself interrupted and said his thing about how too many people are saying the mess is "our fault". cue Jon's flurry at the end that I posted already. So if you wanted more from Jon about Qatar you should blame Hitch for interrupting him.

    I guess I'm not the only one who needs to rewatch this interview. This was even more one-sided than I remembered, and the only real joke Jon made was when Hitch forgot what they were talking about and Jon did the old Looney Tunes 'rabbit season/duck season' reverse position gag

By Antigone on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 08:34 pm:

    Also, the whole "there were terrorists in Iraq before the war" line is a complete red herring. (Not only for the reasons I STATED IN ALL CAPS above.)

    It's painfully obvious now that the only thing keeping Iraq together all of these years has been Saddam's iron fist. Left to their own devices, the Iraqis, for the most part, don't want to be Iraqis. They want to be Kurds, Sunnis, and Shi'ites. And this is not a new phenomenon.

    So, when someone says "There were terrorists in Iraq before we got there," my first thought these days is "DUH!" They were just as likely there FIGHTING SADDAM as they were being harbored by him, especially if they were Shi'ite.

By Rowlfe on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 09:03 pm:

    if people are saying anything, its that the war is creating terrorists. many people that see the USA as evil and heathen, but have otherwise lived normal lives - they see their families, friends, business and homes destroyed and they snap. Basically, "the Punisher" origin story.

    Say the US was invaded and then occupied to save itself from some dictator. lots of civilian casulaties. Without question the militia groups and regular citizens would come out and attack the occupiers. it could be in a "when can take care of ourselves thanks, please leave" context, a fear that the occupation would never end unless they end it themselves, a desire to reshape a new America based on their beliefs, or any other number or reasons.

    but in Iraq we assume that all the insurgents/terrorists there intend on making chemical weapons and learning to fly planes into buildings over here, that they have aspirations beyond regaining control of their own country. I bet there are way more than just a few of the former, but by in large I think the insurgents are attacking troops for many reasons that we don't care to understand. different people, different goals.

    we underestimate these people, and only look at the thing they have in common: they hate us for being there and are willing to express it with violence.
    The valid excuse is that you can't go and hand out a questionaire to the people who are attacking you and try to reason or differentiate between them. a public poll probably isnt going to include the droves who have crossed the border into Iraq to join the fight.

    by putting them into one boat and coming up with this one 'freedom hater', 'evildoer', etc label, we have become more and more ignorant about what the situation really was before we got there and end up using justification like: "see, look at all these terrorists! we were right!" and
    "fight them over there so we dont have to fight them over here!"

    the pundits, including Hitch, have whittled everything i just said down to "you're saying its our fault? whose side are you on? why are you defending them?"

By kazu on Sunday, August 28, 2005 - 10:09 pm:

    I miss the pre-9/11 Hitch. He was still a drunken asshole
    but he didn't piss me off quite so much.

By Nate on Monday, August 29, 2005 - 02:23 pm:

    I don't really want to get into the whole Iraq war argument again.

    Regarding the 4 from Qatar comeback:

    1. the argument that we shouldn't go after terrorists harbored in iraq because there are terrorists all over the place is fundamentally flawed. Obviously we can't afford to go after everyone at once. If you have a number of things wrong with your house, and you can't afford to fix all of them at once, do you just not fix any?

    2. regardless of where there may have been terrorist training camps, there are two well accepted facts:

    --a. Saddam was publicly giving financial support to terrorists.
    --b. al-Zarqwai was using Baghdad as his base of operations.

    Regarding the resolution in '98:

    1. While arguably the only time congress make unanimous votes is on 'symbolic' bills, the idea that anything congress passes can be, subjectively, judged 'symbolic' is ridiculous. The point is, every congressperson voted up on this bill, which means every congressperson supported the US removing the Saddam regime. The outcry wasn't there then, which was Hitchen's point.

    Jon's retort basically says that the bill was largely ignored because people thought it was symbolic. In other words, the liberal left thought it was symbolic (those in favor of regime change probably figured that their congressperson was just, you know, doing what they swore to do and representing their consitituiency.)


    Overall, I understood Hitchens to be arguing that we were right to have removed Saddam, that we should have done it under Bush-the-Daddy over a decade ago, and that we've handled it all wrong.

    Rowlfe: I think Jon is a national treasure. He (and his team) think critically about everything in the news and often provide Whuh? counterpoints when the echo chamber is overwhelming common sense. I watch the TDS regularly.

    I just don't think this was a Tucker-style Jon Stewart ass-whippin'. I think Jon largely agreed with Hitchens.

By droopy on Monday, August 29, 2005 - 02:35 pm:

    i've never seen the daily show. what do you think of the kid's book that started this thread?

By Rowlfe on Monday, August 29, 2005 - 02:51 pm:

    "If you have a number of things wrong with your house, and you can't afford to fix all of them at once, do you just not fix any?:

    see tigs comment about no fly zones. also what about the matter of weighing the results vs. the costs. i dont see how anyone can see whats happened to the US military and think it's been worth it. if theres a real threat that needs to be taken care of the US is in no shape to deal with it.

    and what about the amount of money and resources put into Iraq vs. the hunt for Bin Laden? priorites - fucked.

    "the idea that anything congress passes can be, subjectively, judged 'symbolic' is ridiculous"

    the media would have been hyping up the war machine the same way they did for bush in most of 2002 if it was anything more than symbolic. i know someone would respond to that with 'pre 9/11 mindset blah' but come on, when Clinton actually did do anything he was accused by the right wing and the media of wagging the dog. if the left didnt take it seriously, the right certainly didnt either.

By Nate on Monday, August 29, 2005 - 04:02 pm:

    Regarding the first half of your post, the question isn't of priorities, it is of worthiness as an issue: Was the removal of Saddam a worthwhile cause? Definitely: not the least of the reasons being he was killing off the Kurds.

    Was it our highest priority? Where there better uses of our military and money? Where there other, better targets? I frankly don't know. And you don't either.

    Fuck, my feet are crawling with ants. But I'm determined to wrap this up.

    Regarding the second half of your post, how does what the media hypes have anything to do with congress? Are you saying congress owns the media, and therefore if they were serious about what they said, the propaganda machine would have kicked into gear? Perhaps that is true, but that's not the point: the point is, there was no outrage.

    Congress declared it a goal of the USA to remove Saddam, and no one more than squeeked. So, to make Jon's point valid, the population of the US would have to have known that this was just a symbolic vote, that held no force or purpose, just congress saying (symbolically) that we'd like to kick out Saddam, if we weren't ... so busy? such pussies? worried about losing votes in the next election?

    i fucking hate ants.

By Rowlfe on Monday, August 29, 2005 - 06:47 pm:

    "Where there better uses of our military and money?"

    well personally, i'd say Sudan.... and like I said before, if we're weighing threats to North America/the world/whoever, I can't help but think of what good that money could have done to wipe out AIDS in Africa... this is a different debate.

    I think the silence is proof of it as simply being symbolic. The public doesnt give a shit what they do, politicians realize theres no political victories to be gained by it at that time, nothing happens. The other view on this would probably be the public was simply ignorant... as for "if we werent so busy? such pussies? etc" maybe thats true, I don't know. If it werent for the Lewinsky stuff maybe it would have been taken more seriously.
    Remember Bush Sr. himself said in the mid 90s it would be crazy to go in there and think we could actually do this right. But I'm sure if he was voting he'd be in line with everyone else for that 98 vote. Political move, otherwise its "George H.W. Bush is defending Saddam!" in the media. Vote would be symbolic.
    Like the patriot act. Like the 87 billion vote. Many voted because they believed in it, many voted because they were ignorant, but a shitload of them basically supported that bill because it was just after 9/11 and its the "patriot" act, because if you dont you hate America and don't support the troops.

    The public screams, they jump to action. Would any of this stuff be happening without 9/11? Depends on what you think of Bush and his agenda. Maybe, maybe not.

By Nate on Monday, August 29, 2005 - 09:27 pm:

    shit, i imagine bush would have figured out a way to get the public behind an attack on Iraq. Perhaps something informed by Operation Northwoods?

    oh, hm. right.

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