Thursday, December 20, 2007

That about sums it up...

Josh Marshall, proprietor of the TPM media empire, handicaps the primary races in today's installment of TPM tv. This quote captures the sunny state of play on the Republican side.
Who is the most likely person to still be the Republican nominee? Mitt Romney. So Mitt Romney, obviously he's in a lot of danger in Iowa, he's a terrible phony, a repeated flip flopper, but the bottom line is because he didn't have a mistress slush fund, he doesn't hang around with mafiosos, and he didn't get a serial rapist out of jail because a bunch of anti-Clinton whack-jobs convinced him that the guy was a victim of the system, you have to assume Mitt Romney is still the one to beat in the Republican nomination battle...

Even if Clinton, certainly not my preference, wins the Democratic nomination, I'll cast my vote gleefully for her. Being so happy to vote against [insert eventual Republican nominee here] makes being happy to vote for someone almost superfluous.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Translation: Eff you.

Classic. The look on Clinton's face after Obama's quip is priceless. That was one of the smoothest verbal knifings ever.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Thursday, October 11, 2007

You gotta be kidding me...

Imagine, if you will, the following scene:
A cop responds to a call from a distraught mother who has just fished the limp body of her son from the family pool. While on scene, said cop slips in a puddle and breaks her knee. She subsequently sues the family for having "negligently" left a puddle on the floor...of the house where they took the child who had just been pulled, lifeless, from the pool.
The child is profoundly brain-damaged from the ordeal and the cop was out on paid disability leave for a spell. Has anyone checked to see if she broke her head along with her knee? How does anyone this cop runs her plan by say anything but "if you sue those people, I will never have anything to do with you again"? Including her mother, her husband, her best friend, and her children. Sure, she should have the right to bring any kind of jack-assed, frivolous suit she wants, and have it tossed out of court fair and square. That's a civil right she enjoys, godblessamerica! And those of us with some sense of common decency have the right to shun her like a whore-loving puritan.
Good lord...

PS: Obligatory law-school-guy comment: I'm pretty sure her case is crap. It's called assuming the risk. And yes, this story will be turned into a thousand torts exam fact patterns come finals season. Guaranteed.

Thursday, October 04, 2007


Can I be the only one who looks at the new(ish) White House Press Secretary, Dana Perino, and thinks "Ainsley Hayes?" Ainsley Hayes, you'll remember, was the sharp, conservative young woman tapped to be assistant white house counsel for a couple of seasons on the West Wing. Played by Emily Procter, she was a mighty cute young lady and witty as all get-out to boot. And her sense of civic duty was just enchanting. I've done only a perfunctory google search to find out if anyone else has made the Perino-Hayes connection, but so far, nothin'. Really? It seems so obvious...or maybe I'm just a lecherous old liberal with a soft spot for pretty blond conservatives.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Steve Gilliard

Steve Gilliard has passed away after a months-long illness.
This is an incalculable shame. I can't add much to the outpouring of grief and tribute that has met the news, but I would be an ingrate if I didn't try.
I found Steve's blog via James Walcott of all things. It was around 2004, I think. I was immediately drawn in by his utter non-weaselly-ness. Steve never couched his opinions in the language of "it seems" or "there might" or "I think." What Steve thought is what was as far as he was concerned. I was instantaneously hooked, and before long (like within a day or two), the News Blog was the first site I went to each morning after checking my email. And throughout the day it was "check the email, then check the News Blog," without fail. And I check my email about 82,000 times each day, so I was really on top of Steve's action.
I started the Bush years as a pretty middle of the road "give-him-a-chance" sort of fella. I like to think of myself as a pretty reasonable guy, and by the time I found Steve's blog, I was still quite a bit more willing to listen to the bullshit coming from the right-o-sphere than a lot of liberals. As time and events passed, though, Steve's passionate, articulate stand against everything that Bush and his coterie represented never waned. He simply acquired more targets to fire his erudite criticisms at. And he was erudite. My god. Steve Gilliard was able to stomp a dumbass argument or idea down using analogies to history that simply blew my mind. His knowledge of military history was his great asset. More importantly, I have to say I don't recall anyone seriously questioning the conclusions he drew when he was on his military history jags. On a blog, that's profoundly weird. I don't think it's because he lacked for haters. There were trolls aplently over at the News Blog. But he was authoritative, and that's hard to argue with-even for a troll. Before long, I found that experience and common damned sense forced me to catch up with Steve in a lot of ways. When I started reading, he was a very articulate expositor of a position that I often didn't share, but could see the logic of. After Katrina, thousands more dead in Iraq, Plame-gate, ad-bloody-nauseum, I found myself naturally reading Steve's posts as a reflection of what I was thinking. Just phrased better.
He hadn't moved. I had. Not because he convinced me, either. I moved because he was right and smart and it just took me longer to get where he'd been sitting for years. Though his commentary certainly didn't slow the process.
One thing I got from Steve Gilliard, which I don't get from some other bloggers I read regularly, was the fact that he was a real guy with a real life, and not just some news consumption machine. His food posts, (with recipes included, thank you very much) were as sharp and as useful as what he wrote on politics. My experience as a newly minted soccer fan was immeasurably enhanced by his posts during the world cup. I had something meaningful to say about sports for the first time in my life, and that was all Steve.
I moved to Brooklyn in 2005, and I was able to slip into being a resident of New York City far more easily than I ever would have been able to manage without his help (I suspect that's a legacy he'd be at least a little proud of). Notice I didn't say "New Yorker." I'm not, and I won't be for some time, but when I am (in several decades, probably), I'll have Steve to thank for laying the groundwork.
Steve's blog was the first and only one I posted comments to with any regularity (under the moniker "Mr. Stoopid"). When I thought my posts were awesome, I was quickly reminded of how not-so they were when I read the brilliant (seriously, not kidding, BRILLIANT) musings of Lower Manhattanite or Driftglass, among the many other very sharp commenters over there. The News Blog was a community un-self-conscious about itself as a community and it drew some very talented people into its orbit. This was shown most clearly when Steve went into the hospital and Jen and Jim from LA were able to keep the joint cracking with guest posts from the locals. I came to know many of the commenters' situations (Hubris Sonic is a vet, Jesse Wendell is a doctor, etc...), and so did Steve. Before long, it became apparent that Steve wrote the way he did because he respected his readers, and he respected his readers because he knew them.
I've been reading the many tributes to Steve all over the blogosphere today (by Pachacutec, Jane Hamsher, Digby, and tons more, and have only now found out what a gentle, loving guy he was. But I should have known. It was there between the tough-as-nails lines.
Bottom line: I'll miss the hell out of Steve Gilliard. I didn't know him, but I knew the value he added to my life and to my mind.
Thanks Steve.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

And now that I'm back...

I realize that I have come back almost two years to the day that I last posted. I assure you that this was not planned. Also, if you are looking for a worthless online degree, in the years that I've been gone, some helpful spamming soul has loaded the comments with solicitations for just such a thing. Have at it.


So I'm back.
I haven't posted on this blog in several thousand years or so, but here I am.
In the mean time, I got rid of the crappy job and went to lawschool.
I'm embarrassed about some of my previous posts, now that I've had a couple of years of legal-learnin' under my belt, because i now recognize their essential ignorance.

Or that could just be the kool aid talking. They say you go to law school and what happens is not so much that you learn to be a lawyer (you learn that when you get a job and start working as a lawyer), but that you start thinking like a lawyer. Or they teach you to think legally, or whatever. So maybe I'm just looking at my old, very sensible posts and re-examining them with the eyes of a new convert. Or maybe I was slightly dumber then. Or maybe I'm slightly dumber now.

Either way, I'm back-for the moment at any rate. Beyond that, I dunno.