July 20, 2008

"We have sort of become a nation of whiners. You just hear this constant whining."

The quote that wrecked Phil Gramm, now out as a McCain campaign co-chairman.

We need to make a list of quotes in the 2008 campaign season that were deemed so bad that it made more sense to boot the quotee that to try to explain the quote. I think of Samantha Power calling Hillary a "monster."

Help me collect them all.

At some point, we're losing something, aren't we? People are expendible, and thinking more deeply about statements has become a luxury no one believes we can afford anymore.

On the other hand, Phil Gramm can't complain. He'd be whining.

No whining!

Eh, I'm sick of the whining about whining. Many complaints and criticisms are justified. The "no whining" retort is itself shallow and suggests that thinking more deeply is a luxury we can't afford anymore.

20 comments:

Ron said...

Perhaps we need a term for people ousted in this way -- "Powerized"?

Let's hear Phil whine about the sales of the porn films he funded! That'd be funny at least.

Lets have "kvetch" replace "whine," which now sounds, well, too whiney.

Bissage said...

Mrs. Bissage makes a beef pot pie that is red whiney just right.

It's more of a winter thing, though.

She tried it once or twice with imperial stout.

Not as good, by far.

Just saying.

rcocean said...

Maybe Phil was talking about the UBS stockholders.

Outis said...

People are expendible, and thinking more deeply about statements has become a luxury no one believes we can afford anymore.

This assumes several things that aren't necessarily true.

First, that we used to think deeply about statements at one time. I'm not sure that the mass electorate ever did. I'm not sure that most of the "elites" ever did either. No doubt that certain individuals HAVE but I imagine that they're rarities and that they probably also have lapses.

Second, it assumes that we CAN think of statements more deeply. That doesn't seem to be the case. Stuoid slogans have been the order of the day my entire life. (b. 1968) From "Turn on, tune in, drop out" to "Bush lied, people died" it seems like it has been one stupid slogan after another. "Whip Inflation Now" is one my favorites from the other side of the isle.

Third, it assumes that the statements in question deserve to be thought about deeply. Some probably do (e.g., Jesse Jackson's complaint that Obama is talking down to black people) and some don't (e.g., Jesse Jackson dropping an "n"-bomb, Power calling Hillary a "monster") and some are borderline (Gramm's comment).

But we certainly don't need to think about ALL statements deeply, or even most of them.

Simon said...

For the life of me I can't see what Gramm said that was inaccurate.

Bill said...

Which of Jeremiah Wright's comments was the last straw?

Meade said...

Wasn't it the one where he called Obama a big fat slice of phony baloney?

"Help me collect them all."

How about the one where Jesse Jackson said he wanted to extract Barako Obama's gonads with a sharp unspecified surgical instrument?

William said...

"Words matter." This is the kind of phrase that could turn around and bite most politicians in the ass. Not so with Obama. As he further refined his position during the Wright controversy, words matter unless they are sound bites, taken out of context, and do not reveal the true character and deeds of the man. Or, as he observed a bit later into the controversey, words that damage me matter and have no place in our political system....The Obama campaign claimed that they did not have sufficient seating to take the New Yorker reporter with them on this trip. Maybe the appropriate cliche should be thrown off the plane instead of under the bus.

rcocean said...

"For the life of me I can't see what Gramm said that was inaccurate."

And I don't see that it was accurate.

"Blue is the best color".

I don't see how that statement is inaccurate either.

Cedarford said...

The "no whining" retort is itself shallow and suggests that thinking more deeply is a luxury we can't afford anymore.

Maybe not so. Recent events do seem to show we are now incredibly indulgent on a professed "victim class" that moves around based on who whines the loudest about "their tragedy" - then says government and the rest of society OWES them what they want so they can finally reach "healing" and achieve "closure".

1. We have parents screaming that government must do something about their fat kids, the kids not being motivated in school....

2. After 230 major hurricanes impacting the USA, several major earthquakes, 4-5 near-biblical floods in the Mississippi Valley, and thousands of town-destroying tornados were dealt with by locals with little or no Federal help. After we see 3rd Worlders behave like 1st World civilized people when the 8 million in the city of Mumbai was under water and rebuilt it themselves in 4 months, whole Columbian villages aiding adjacent villages in dealing with thousands of deaths from volcanic mudslides....

......We got Katrina and NOLA and endless whining...

"Wheh the Government! I've been sitting in my own garbage near two days! Where are the new free sneakers? The hot meals owed us? Who will change my chillun's diapers. Course there was lootin'. We was starving to death after 8 hours and needed flatscreen TVs to trade for necessities. Who gonna give us nice hotel rooms till someone builds us newer, nicer houses??"

Joined by reaffirming whining from media and opportunistic politicians. "Yeah! Where are the diaper-changers and new sneakers for the heroic victims of NOLA, Feds!! Bush, you are killing these victims!

3. WTC? Endless whining and demands for money and nothing be done with the place until agreed to by by all the "victimhood stakeholders".
7 years later? Still whining and a billion overbudgeted Pit, along with demands for another 400 million to rescreen all Pit debris because some "sacred artifacts and bone bits needed for "victim closure might have been overlooked.

Pentagon? Intense mourning allowed for a little while, then no whining allowed as they had a job to do. Completely rebuilt in under a year. Nice memorial that cost the taxpayers under a million located on the grounds.

4. Endless whining about global warming followed by endless whining about energy & food prices from doing nothing but whine for 30 years.

5. The whining about killing "innocent enemy civilians and children in the same car as terrorist Daddy" started before the 1st bomb landed in Afghanistan. Followed by 6 years of endless whining about light casualties, historically, as the people that despise the military as losers and atrocity-committers, seek them being banned from activities at school and colleges let out an unrelenting barrage of "Oh, the Humanity of our Mommy's little duped, helpless children in Marine uniforms being murdered by Bush!"

6. Congress now believes it it politically more advantageous to hold news conferences whining about things than do any work to fix the things they whine about.

7. Many people not inclined to be whiners are now waking up to the fact that organized whiners in special interest groups...rather than being about democratic assembly and petition are functioning more like the little kid who screams until they get the video game they want or the ice cream....And the screamers and whiners are getting the taxpayer money and "advantages" that more stoic, go about helping yourself before asking others" type Americans are missing out on. Except those stoic and self-reliant people aren't stupid, and see how "whiners rule!!" And are slowly turning to the whining behavior that is so richly rewarded.

From a nation of "no excuses, get it done, now!" people to a nation of whiners begging others..

Hoosier Daddy said...

How about the one where Jesse Jackson said he wanted to extract Barako Obama's gonads with a sharp unspecified surgical instrument?

My guess is that Michelle did that years ago.

amba said...

A classic on whining about whining.

amba said...

From the preceding link: "Every single worthwhile thing that has ever been accomplished since the dawn of time has been done in response to whining, bitching, criticizing and nagging. Is it just me or is this meat cold? Is there some reason we can’t invent fire? Is a nice medium rare too much to ask?"

AJ Lynch said...

I agree with Phil Gramm - too much whining. Biggest whine I hear is "we are so busy today".

Not true IMO. For instance, is a working mother today busier than a working mother from the 1960's? No way. Impossible - micowaves, takeout food, bigger fridges & freezers, food lasts longer, smaller families, two cars - heck Mom drives today. Has ATM/credit cards/ bank on the internet, etc.

blake said...

1. We have parents screaming that government must do something about their fat kids, the kids not being motivated in school....

Really? I always thought Other People's Kids were the problem!

Salamandyr said...

Since man first climbed down from the trees, took a look around and said "all this open space, it'll have to go", the old have complained that society is going to hell in a handbasket. Old farts in ancient Sumeria sat around drinking soaked tree bark and bitched that "they just don't know how to make a ziggurat anymore. Why in my day, we could build three ziggurats and a pyramid before these young whippersnappers get done with breakfast"

If we, as a society have become so sensitive that the comments of curmudgeonly old coots hurts our feelings, then by God we are a nation of whiners.

Charles Noland said...

Geraldine Ferraro had a nice one -

"If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was a woman (of any color) he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept."

Texas Tom said...

To quote Sammy Geezenslaw:
"There's too many fools
Make too many rules -
That's one thing you
Can't say about us.

We all get along
When we sing the same song!
There's only one thing
T'cause a fuss -

We've got a five dollar fine
For whinin'."

Revenant said...

Jonah Goldberg pointed out, regarding Graham, that the press likes to yammer on about "straight talkers" who address the hard truths -- but when somebody actually DOES engage in straight talk, they pounce on them and tear them apart.

We are a nation of whiners. Not as much so as most other western democracies these days, but it is still an alarming trend.

Zachary Paul Sire said...

Ann,
I took your suggestion and collected my favorite gaffes of the season, so far. I'm sure I missed some...but my list is up, here.