February 9, 2008

"Democratic superdelegates may have the legal right to thwart the will of Democratic primary voters and caucus goers..."

"... but they do no not have the moral right to do so," writes Chris Bowers, threatening — like Donna Brazile — to quit the party if the superdelegates determine the nominee. What's morally wrong with following the rules that everyone knew all along? Parties aren't morally obligated to use a purely democratic approach to picking a nominee. The Democrats set up a system with some delegates who were there because of their position in the party and not as representatives of people who voted in primaries or caucused. They were authorized to exercise their independent judgment about who the party should nominate, in what looks like a check on freewheeling democracy. Why should they now be told to subordinate their independent judgment?

What's the matter with Kansas?

Get with the program, people!

Pimp.

"Pimp" at Stinky Cheese

Just something I happened to see today when I stopped into Stinky Brooklyn, that store on Smith Street.

"As the red light atop the camera went dark... there was still much more I wanted to say to Chris Matthews, much more that I needed to say."

Ridiculous, humorless self-dramatizing from Kate Michelman. [Click the "Enter Salon" box in the upper right corner.]

I can't find the video clip, but from Michelman's own account, it seems that Matthews was just phrasing the question provocatively to set up her response:
Knowing that I had just announced my support for Barack Obama for president after having earlier supported my old friend John Edwards, Matthews had me on his show Monday. His first Hardball to me was one of his typical zingers: "Kate Michelman, how does it feel to have abandoned the cause of your life?"

The simple answer, Chris, is that I haven't -- in fact, my endorsement of Barack, just like my earlier embrace of John Edwards, is all about exalting the causes of my life. Not about repudiating them...
Blah blah blah.

Of course, I completely agree with her that women don't have to vote for Hillary to be true to feminism.
Matthews' other Hardball, which also deserved more time than the red light gave me, was:
"How can you pass, Kate, on the opportunity to support a woman for president when this may be the last chance for that to happen in your lifetime?"
I don't think that's a different "hardball." Sounds like he had a hook for the segment and you didn't take the bait vigorously enough to justify having you on, so he tried again. It was pretty mean of him to insinuate that you're really old, but you do sound awfully fusty. You don't need more time. You need to take advantage of the opportunity given by the question and slam your point home. Not seethe and go write a wordy, grim Salon piece about it.

The 2,000-car, 12-hour traffic jam on I-90.

In Madison. From the 911 call transcripts:
7:25 p.m.

Caller: You've got people ... been sitting out here since 11 o'clock this morning. They're out here taking craps in the middle of the highway because there's no place to go. I talked to two guys that's diabetics. No food. Where in the heck is the road commissioner or somebody? Ain't doing nothing for nobody out here.

I've never had a dog.

But if I were to get a dog — is it crazy of me after all these years to think of getting a dog? — what kind of dog would it be?

NBC wimped out over "pimped out."

David Shuster said — about Chelsea Clinton — "Doesn't it seem like she's being pimped out in some weird sort of way?"



Now, MSNBC has suspended him, after pressure from the Clinton campaign:
Behind the scenes, Phil Griffin, senior vice president at MSNBC, took the criticism over Shuster's remarks from the Clinton camp especially seriously, and Tim Russert helped mediate the situation, according to sources.

But one high-level NBC source told Politico that apologizing was an act of cowardice on behalf of the network.

"This is at least the second time they've caved to the Hillary Clinton campaign," a source told Politico, referring to Chris Matthews' recent apology over remarks he recently made about Clinton that were widely denounced as sexist. "What does this do to journalism?"
Really, how bad is it to say "pimped out"? Is it "nappy-headed hos" bad? Did anyone think Shuster was literally calling Chelsea a whore or even making any reference to her womanly virtue? "Pimped out" is a common colloquialism these days. According to the Urban Dictionary, which gives a good read on how young people use words, the connotations having to do with exaggerated fashion and style predominate.

Even if the clear associations with prostitution remain, we often make figurative references to prostitution in speech, and the cause of feminism is not served by requiring special limitations when we're talking about women. We ought to be able to call a female publicity hound a "media whore."

I've never watched "Tucker," the show Shuster was guest-hosting when he made the supposedly offensive remark, but if the conversation there is casual and slang is the norm, then saying "pimped out" about Chelsea should be taken in stride. Otherwise it looks as though NBC caved to the Clintons.

ADDED: Ugh! Here's Shuster groveling:



"All Americans should be proud of Chelsea Clinton"? Why? Because, sublimely privileged, she went to work for a hedge fund? And, generally, why should anyone be "proud of" someone else's children? Plus, Chelsea isn't a kid anymore! I think saying "All Americans should be proud of Chelsea Clinton" is offensive. Please fire David Shuster.

AND: Out in the real world today, I had an encounter with the word "pimp." Plus, the dominant meaning of the word today — relating to style — may be the original meaning, according to the Online Etymology Dictionary:
pimp

1607, perhaps from M.Fr. pimper "to dress elegantly" (16c.), prp. of pimpant "alluring in dress, seductive." Weekley suggests M.Fr. pimpreneau, defined in Cotgrave (1611) as "a knave, rascall, varlet, scoundrell." The word also means "informer, stool pigeon" in Australia and New Zealand and in S.Africa, where by early 1960s it existed in Swahili form impimpsi. The verb is attested from 1636. Pimpmobile first recorded 1973.

MORE: The Moderate Voice has a big roundup of the commentary, which does not just break down along partisan lines. For example, Jane Hamsher said:
It may surprise everyone but I actually wasn't bothered by [what Shuster said]. The phrase is ubiquitous, I use it all the time and although it is a loaded term my initial impression was that in the wake of all the truly awful sexist stuff that's come down the pipeline from MSNBC over the course of this campaign, much of which I have personally railed about, this just didn't fall into that category.

At first I thought it might be because I know Shuster and don't think he has the women's issues that many on MSNBC seem to have, and maybe that was affecting my assessment of the situation. But I wrote a post recently about Ben Affleck appearing at a press conference for the SEIU in Boston, and shortly after it went live someone involved in helping me put together the story sent me an email wondering what the hell I was thinking linking to a headline that said something on the order of "Boston Mayor Pimps For Healthcare Workers." I wasn't sure what they were upset about either at the time, but after a moment I realized that the term probably didn't strike others as being as inert as it did me so I changed the link.

I understand that this situation is different, we're talking about a young woman and Hillary Clinton has been on the receiving end of a lot of really misogynistic and disrespectful shit from MSNBC and that on the heels of that, a comment which overtly compared her daughter to a prostitute probably did not sit too well. Still, if you asked me, I'd say that while I certainly understand that others might feel differently, for me this was a minor infraction.
And if anyone thinks my comment here is partisan, remember that I just defended Randi Rhodes (and I've been arguing the free speech side of nearly every dispute over the 4-year life of this blog).

February 8, 2008

I have made a photograph of the way I feel.

The telephone pole that wants to be the Manhattan Bridge

(The title of this post is an movie allusion that perhaps only I understand, but if you do, my virtual embrace goes out to you.)

Fujita, grilled?

The other day I disparaged the pathetic Madison, Wisconsin newspaper, The Capital Times, for its inane letter publishing policy. I must continue the theme. On January 26, 2008, it published a long letter from area 9/11 conspiracy theorist Kevin Barrett. Excerpts, with my boldface:
I am out of a job because The Capital Times and other mainstream media outlets refuse to report the news....

Along with hundreds of other scholars, engineers, architects, and former high-level military, intelligence and executive branch officials..., I have pointed out that the official story of 9/11 is a ridiculous fairy tale....

Last week, the probable next prime minister of Japan, Yukihisa Fujita, grilled current prime minister Fukuda for half an hour about the controlled demolition of the World Trade Center and the staged events at the Pentagon and asked whether the Japanese police could arrest George W. Bush for his complicity in 9/11. Why wasn't that front page news?....

[M]y reputation has been ruined, at least in the eyes of the fewer and fewer people naive enough to believe the mainstream media...
Today, we see this hilarious response:
Dear Editor: I am Yukihisa Fujita, a Japanese MP who was mentioned in a Jan. 26 letter to the editor by Kevin Barrett. I wish to correct two points in his letter:

1. I can never be the probable next prime minister because the prime minister of Japan has to be elected among Lower House MPs, while I am an Upper House MP! I do not have any position in the shadow Cabinet in the Democratic Party of Japan.

2. I never asked the Japanese police to arrest President Bush.

Yukihisa Fujita,

Japan
Some things aren't in the news because — unexciting as it may be to the mind of the conspiracy buff — they didn't happen.

How I feel today in New York.

Trapped in DUMBO

It's a real phenomenon: conservatives for Obama.

There's something strange going on. You see it in this caller to yesterday's Rush Limbaugh show (subscriber link):
CALLER: But, Rush, what I wanted to say was (sigh) I'm a Christian conservative and a loyal Republican. I voted every year, every election cycle since 1984. So I'm pretty depressed today because this is the first time that I found myself in a position where I will not vote for the nominee. In fact, hell will freeze over before I'll vote for McCain -- or Huckabee, for that matter. I'm going to sit home this year, and my husband says he is, too. I also want to say that, it's really true what you said about Obama. He doesn't scare me. I'm not afraid of him. In fact, I may even vote for him against McCain.

RUSH: You won't do that when you find out what Obama's policies are.

CALLER: Well, you know what? I know that he's very liberal. I know that.

RUSH: Just think of a nice Hillary Clinton, in terms of policy.

CALLER: You're right. You're right.

RUSH: Maybe even worse, if that's possible.

CALLER: But he's very likable.

The man has powers. Obama, I mean. Rush too, but not the same way. He's got to see this is a real problem. Conservatives voting for Obama. What's that?

Let me add that next line to that exchange: After the caller's "But he's very likable," Rush says, "Yeah, and that matters in a television age." I hear a wistfulness there from the man who is so big on radio but not so much on TV.

ADDED: It wasn't that long ago that Barack Obama said, "I want some Obama Republicans, some Obamacans."

Bill Clinton, in self-reflective mode.



Are you perceiving sincerity here? If so, are you thinking: Sincerity — if you can fake that, you've got it made?

Did McCain say he'd pick judges like John Roberts but he draws the line at Samuel Alito?

Dahlia Lithwick examines the question:
[W]hat McCain reportedly said makes no real sense, given that (1) McCain neither knows nor claims to know much about courts and the Constitution, and (2) Justice Alito was never seriously believed to be more conservative or even more overtly conservative than John Roberts. It's also worth pointing out—as did professor Stephen Bainbridge—that McCain has been solidly pro-Alito from day one.
But Lithwick says it doesn't matter whether McCain cared about some distinction he thought he saw between Roberts and Alito:
[W]hen McCain constructs his legal team, he will have just one institutional framework from which to pick—the same movement conservatives that produced Roberts and Alito. The only thing that really matters now is that McCain has already agreed to fall in line.
I'm sorry, Dahlia, but that doesn't make sense to me. McCain has embraced the generality of a conservative judge, but within that category, there will always be an array of judicial minds. Once he is elected, he'll be choosing from that array, and it remains fair to wonder whether he will pick more flexible pragmatic judges like O'Connor and Kennedy.

In fact, I think that is the line he probably perceived between Roberts and Alito — if he said what he's reputed to have said. I think people at the time did see a distinction like that, and even if McCain doesn't have a deep, lawyerly knowledge of law, he very well may have heard talk that Alito was more of an ideological conservative and Roberts had a instinct toward moderation and consensus.

But this is not a criticism of McCain. It makes me more willing to trust him to pick judges. I think Lithwick, on the other hand, would like moderates and liberals to turn away from McCain. She portrays him as an instrument of a monolithic conservative "institutional structure that has become the only game in town," because — I suspect — she wants us to vote for the Democrat.

This makes me want to look back to one of the conference calls McCain did with bloggers, in which I asked him about Supreme Court appointments:
I got my question in just now, which was to invite him to talk about what sort of person he would put on the Supreme Court, and specifically if he would strengthen a conservative majority or if he would work with liberals and others who care about preserving the balance that we've had on the Court for so long. He said he wanted, above all, a person with "a proven record of strict construction." This is "probably a conservative position, but," he said, "I'm proud of that position." He wants judges who won't "legislate." Then, he added that "this is new" and something we may not have heard: he'd like someone who had not just judicial experience but also "some other life experiences," such as time in the military, in a corporation, or in a small business. He would like to see "not just vast judicial knowledge, but also knowledge of the world."
I wish I'd written more at the time, but if I recall correctly, he kept going back to the idea of "strict constructionism," and I could not get him to break that down into any preference that had to do with outcomes. It's safe but opaque to assert that you want judges who won't legislate. Virtually every judge will insist — and probably even believe — that he or she does not legislate and properly says "what the law is."

Yet this idea of appointing a justice with "knowledge of the world" suggests that he would favor judicial minds that are more flexible and pragmatic and not woodenly ideological. And perceiving a line between Alito and Roberts is about exactly the same thing.

"So, was it good for the Mormons?"

Libby Copeland asks:
Romney seemed so Mormon, so squeaky clean, so Pollyanna-ish, even. (Remember when he went to Michigan and said he could bring those lost jobs back?) Romney's seeming normalcy isn't the norm anymore. Maybe we understand better those who've strayed or failed and recovered -- or, for that matter, those who aren't fabulously successful and can't put tens of millions into their own campaigns. Maybe we relate to the family lives of other candidates, candidates who have been divorced, who have blended families, whose children don't all campaign with them (and may not even like them). Sure, they're messier, but messy is authentic.

There was more to it than that, of course. Some evangelical voters -- who don't want messy -- see Mormonism as something other than Christianity. Mike Huckabee, an evangelical and former pastor, was speaking to them when he said, "Don't Mormons believe that Jesus and the Devil are brothers?"
That is, we saw 2 kinds of prejudice — one for each end of the American cultural spectrum.

"Oh don't. Stop it. Stay true to your tradition. You're CNN. Don't do it!"

Angelina Jolie shames CNN.

(And now that I'm linking to Gay Socialites — which, by the way, promotes Hillary Clinton after each post — and because I've got the theme of masculine beauty and comedy going this morning, look at this — maybe not if you're at work.)

(Bonus question: Why do gay men love Hillary?)

"Governor Huckabee of Arkansas, the new President of Texas!"

Nice.

"I'm totally ready for a President Obama vs. Romney race in 2012."

My son John IMs.
Barack-Mitt match '12!

Joking about Mitt Romney.

Incredibly bad jokes from David Letterman. His writers are on strike, right? Is that the problem? I couldn't watch that clip to the end, it was so bad, but it seems the only idea they had was that Romney is a blandly good-looking man.

(Why didn't his good looks help Romney more? Is there something about male beauty that disturbs us — some of us? Think of the reaction to Dan Quayle and to John Edwards. Some people seem to get almost angry at a man for being good looking. Is it some paranoid form of homophobia?)

Meanwhile, lots of bloggers are up in arms about this comic bit that aired on the Randi Rhodes show yesterday:
ANNOUNCER: "... If John McCain is the Republican Presidential nominee, it will destroy the Republican Party. We’re Romney supporters and we know. Cause, if you vote for John McCain, we’re going to go on a killing rampage. Hey, better dead then moderate.”

REPUBLICAN CHARACTER VOICE: "Look, I for one don’t want to die in a hail of gun fire from crazed Mitt Romney supporters, but it’s better then nominating a man who opposed the Bush tax cuts. Hell, John McCain spent years in a North Vietnamese prison. A prison? That doesn’t make him a hero. That makes him an ex-con.”
It goes on. You can read the whole transcript at the link and listen to it. It's not very funny, but I understand why it's supposed to be funny. Rush Limbaugh and others have been over-the-top these past few weeks exaggerating how terrible John McCain supposedly is. How do you parody something that already feels like a parody? The idea they went with — lamely — was that McCain's opponents would go completely insane, and the stereotypical thing completely insane people do is go on a killing rampage. The writers could have brainstormed a little longer and come up with something more creative, but this is what they cranked out.

Does it outrage you? I'm sure Randi's happy if it does, so why don't you join me in saying that this is just embarrassingly badly done comedy?

February 7, 2008

Third-grade boy wants to go to school dressed and treated as a girl.

The school — in Colorado — will accommodate him:
"As a public school system, our calling is to educate all kids no matter where they come from, what their background is, beliefs, values, it doesn't matter," said Whei Wong, Douglas County Schools spokesperson....

Wong says teachers are planning to address the student by name instead of using he or she. The child will not use the regular boys or girls bathroom. Instead, two unisex bathrooms in the building will be made available.

Sources say Romney will quit.

Time.com reports.

ADDED: They removed the "Sources" intro to the headline, which now says outright: "Romney to Quit Race."

UPDATE: The speech:
I disagree with Senator McCain on a number of issues, as you know. But I agree with him on doing whatever it takes to be successful in Iraq, on finding and executing Osama bin Laden, and on eliminating Al Qaeda and terror. If I fight on in my campaign, all the way to the convention, I would forestall the launch of a national campaign and make it more likely that Senator Clinton or Obama would win. And in this time of war, I simply cannot let my campaign, be a part of aiding a surrender to terror.

This is not an easy decision for me. I hate to lose. My family, my friends and our supporters… many of you right here in this room… have given a great deal to get me where I have a shot at becoming President. If this were only about me, I would go on. But I entered this race because I love America, and because I love America, I feel I must now stand aside, for our party and for our country.

"It's like a man is in a car and the car is old and the man gets out of the car and rolls the car into the water into a lake."

The filmmaker David Lynch talks about death on the occasion of the death of his guru, the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

What does it mean to you that Maharishi is dead?

Well, Maharishi dropped his body. It's like a man is in a car and the car is old and the man gets out of the car and rolls the car into the water into a lake. Do we feel sorry for the man? The car is gone but the man is there. No problems for Maharishi. People are sad because that voice of wisdom is gone.
Did that car image come from the Maharishi himself? It made me think of this song lyric (audio) from George Harrison, another devotee of the Maharishi:
I got born into the material world
Getting worn out in the material world
Use my body like a car,
Taking me both near and far

Met my friends all in the material world...

I’m living in the material world
Living in the material world
I hope to get out of this place
By the lord Sri Krishna’s grace
My salvation from the material world
Do you think of your body as a car that you're driving, and death as a matter of getting out of that car? When you see a dead body, do you think of it as a car wreck or an abandoned car from which the driver emerged unscathed?

Do you hope they got a new car, or do you — like Harrison, apparently — hope they took to walking from then on?

"Is the job of Vice President to a Clinton worth having?"

Michael Duffy asks.
Al Gore learned that being No. 2 to Bill was really more like being No. 3 after you factored in Hillary, who had an office in the West Wing and a larger suite of rooms down the hall from the Veep in the Old Executive Office Building. Gore watched his priorities often take a backseat to hers in the first term—and his future run aground as they fought successfully to avoid impeachment and conviction. While she joked with David Letterman on his show that there is no doubt "who wears the pantsuits" in her house, there is little doubt that the Clintons intend to work as a team if Hillary is elected. "I'll be there, talking her through everything," Bill said in Napa Valley, Calif., last month, "like she did with me." One unaligned party wise man said, "Obama may look at the Clintons, at both of them—at that whole thing they have—and say, 'Jeez, that's just way too [messed] up to be a part of. That's just no place I want to be.'"
It's clear that Obama should not subordinate himself to the Clintons. He doesn't need it to set up his next run for the presidency. Vice Presidents haven't been doing too well running for President these past few decades. Obama will have already distinguished himself as the frontrunner. It would be a comedown for him, and he'd be saddled with whatever goes wrong in the Clinton presidency — or her failed campaign for it. And Obama's distinctiveness is that he offers a clean break from the politics of the past. Why on earth would he want to connect himself to an icon of the politics of the past?

And would Hillary Clinton agree to run for VP under Obama?

Obama and McCain "exemplify 'post-partisan' politics."

Perhaps. And if so, it's clear — isn't it? — that Obama is the stronger opponent for the Republican's presumptive nominee. George Will lays out this theory well:
Forewarned, Democrats now are forearmed -- not that they will necessarily make sensible use of the gift.... Will their purblind party now nominate the most polarizing person in contemporary politics, knowing that Republicans will nominate the person who tries to compensate for his weakness among conservatives with his strength among independent voters who are crucial to winning the White House?
Will briefly alludes to something else, which is going to be important when the 2 party nominees appear side-by-side. McCain is quite old. He admits it and laughs about it, but it's a fact and it affects perceptions on a deep psychic level. Can a President be that old? Will voters have doubts? Hillary Clinton is old enough to neutralize the age issue or at least reduce our anxiety about it. Barack Obama will make us to think about it constantly.

"The man of the moment is an urchin, a wraith or an underfed runt."

Fashion designers design for the ultra-skinny man. Fascinating pictures at the link of very thin male models.
[E]ven those inured to the new look were flabbergasted at the sheer quantity of guys who looked chicken-chested, hollow-cheeked and undernourished....

[M]odels like Stas Svetlichnyy of Russia typified the new norm. Mr. Svetlichnyy’s top weight, he said last week, is about 145 pounds. He is 6 feet tall with a 28-inch waist.

“Designers like the skinny guy,” [model agency director Dave Fothergill said.] “It looks good in the clothes and that’s the main thing. That’s just the way it is now.”
It wasn't that long ago that male models were expected to be well-muscled. But somehow, as one designer put it: "The eye has changed." A well-built man can't fit into the clothes the designers want to make. He only fits in clothes that look "boxy," and boxy looks so wrong right now. So, the designers must design not only the clothes that look right, they must design the person inside the clothes.

Pity the poor fashion designer! It is not his business to make ordinary people — have you seen these horrible ordinary people? — happy and comfortable and reasonably good-looking in their clothes. He must realize a vision. Yet he is continually hitting up against the limits of human anatomy. He must put a human being inside his beautiful work, and these human beings are so hard to reshape into what looks new. It's not as if you can rip them apart at the seams and resew. So maddeningly frustrating.

February 6, 2008

Just as Hillary reveals that she's loaned her campaign $5,000,000 of her own money...

Obama lets it slip that he's raised $4,252,184 in the last day. And here they are facing the coming weeks needing to fight for every delegate all over the country.

ADDED: But the money is flowing into the Clinton campaign too.

Area man believes inane theory.

Local newspaper defends inane letter publishing policy.

IN THE COMMENTS: Pogo summarizes:
So the Capital Times is concerned that Ann Althouse - who is "from their area"- ripped on (huh? What are they at CT, high schoolers?) Kevin Barrett who is also "from their area", so they "let people have their say"?

Baloney.

They are nutters, and support a fellow loon.

MORE IN THE COMMENTS: Quoting the letter at the link from the Capital Times opinion editor Judie Kleinmaier — "Are you suggesting that we should believe everything our government — the government of George Bush and Dick Cheney — tells us?" — Tibore writes:
(*Sigh*)... Judie, instead of making it all about "what the government tells us", how about you consider "what the evidence, science, and engineering" tells us? Then maybe you'd see why 9/11 conspiracy fantasy is so baseless.

Yet another person who'd probably say to me "Put aside the physics for a minute, consider what Bush..." yadda yadda... sheesh...

Palladian writes:
What will these people do when Bush and Cheney aren't running the government anymore, yet the "official" version of 9/11/01 doesn't change?

Henry responds:
That's spot on. The fact that Judie Kleinmaier thinks her argument is enhanced by qualifying who the "government" is reveals a profound level of ignorance about science and actual, unbiased, journalism...

ADDED: Area Woman Rips Area Opinion Editor.

Does Michelle Obama hate Hillary?

"There's an edgy attitude. Not toughness. Not meanness."

It's Betsey Johnson, talking about fashion.



Several points:

1. I used to buy Betsey Johnson clothes when they were at Paraphernalia (which she left in 1969). Does anyone else remember shopping for clothes at Paraphernalia in the Betsey Johnson days? I loved that stuff.

2. I love the version of "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" that plays at the end of the video.

3. Betsey has worked out a really nice image for herself as an aging woman. It's almost clownish, but it suits her. I could get my hair cut like that. What stops me?

4. "She lived in the Chelsea Hotel in the late '60s. Edie Sedgwick was her house model. She became a friend-of-Andy. She designed the costumes for 'Ciao, Manhattan.' She made velvet suits for the Velvet Underground. She made Lou Reed's pants too big in the crotch, provoking his anger. She married John Cale, making matters worse. She shocked the fashion establishment. She hung out at Max's Kansas City. She shocked the fashion establishment at Max's Kansas City. She played Yoko Ono to Lou Reed's Paul. She broke up the Velvet Underground."

5. She reminds me a little of Susan Estrich.

"The Republican presidential candidates explain their judicial philosophies."

That is, they try to tip us off on who'd they'd put on the Supreme Court.

I'll analyze the language later this evening, but I thought you'd enjoy chewing over it.

ADDED: As I expected, these statements are pretty much the same, but there are some subtle differences. McCain goes first, so I'll list the 4 basic things he does, and then we can see how the others deviate from the McCain model:

1. Assert a strong belief that judges should only interpret the law as written and not usurp the role of the legislature by declaring that the law is what they want it to be.

2. Imply that you nevertheless expect them to reach outcomes that you like by pointing to the outcomes you expect the judge to reach.

3. Refer to separation of powers and federalism.

4. Invoke the name "John Roberts" and one other Justice who represent the judicial ideal.

Romney omits #2 (the most dubious point), but lest conservatives think he's not going to give them what they want, on #4, he invokes John Roberts and adds not just Samuel Alito (McCain's other Justice) but also Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas.

Huckabee omits #2 and 3, and, like Romney, he names all 4 conservative Justices.

(I'm ignoring Ron Paul, who seems as though he might want to repeal the 14th Amendment.)

Come on, everybody, pay attention to Wisconsin.

Ours — on the 19th — is the next big primary. The Cap Times marshals the historical evidence of the importance of the Wisconsin primary:
  • As upstart contender Franklin Roosevelt did when he beat previous party nominee Al Smith in the 1932 Wisconsin Democratic primary.
  • As Willkie did with his audacious but failed 1944 bid.
  • As backers of Gen. Douglas MacArthur did when they tried unsuccessfully to build a boomlet for the Milwaukee native with an unsuccessful Republican primary bid in 1948.
  • As backers of Dwight Eisenhower did when they upset the campaign of conservative Robert Taft in the state and created an opening for the general to enter the contest for the Republican nomination of 1952.
  • As Massachusetts Sen. John Kennedy did when the state put him on track for the party nod in 1960.
  • As Minnesota Sen. Eugene McCarthy did when his anti-Vietnam War challenge to President Lyndon Johnson forced the incumbent to quit on the eve of Wisconsin's 1968 Democratic primary.
  • As South Dakota Sen. George McGovern did when the state gave him a critical Democratic primary win in 1972.
  • As liberal Mo Udall did when he narrowly failed to derail Jimmy Carter's bandwagon in the Wisconsin Democratic primary of 1976.
  • As liberal John Anderson and moderate George H.W. Bush did when they tried to block conservative Ronald Reagan's candidacy in the intense Republican primary of 1980.
  • As Mike Dukakis and Jesse Jackson did when they fought the essential battle of the 1988 Democratic nomination race in Wisconsin.
  • As Bill Clinton did when he used a slim win in the state to prevent challenger Jerry Brown from threatening his "comeback kid" status in the campaign for the 1992 Democratic nomination.
If you need something to fill your empty hours as you wait for the 19th, may I recommend the documentary "Primary," which shows John F. Kennedy campaigning here in Wisconsin in 1960, fighting off his rival Hubert Humphrey. This is a very low key but highly-regarded film by Robert Drew. It's nowhere near as fun as "The War Room" and "Journeys with George," but it's specifically about a primary, and it takes place in Wisconsin and it's got John F. Kennedy.

ADDED: A test to see if you know your blogger: Is Althouse voting in the Wisconsin primary? If so, will she choose to vote in the Republican or the Democratic primary? If she votes in the Republican primary, who will she vote for? If she votes in the Democratic primary, who will she vote for?

AND: Another question. Assume you're a filmmaker, making a documentary about one of the candidates in the 2008 election season. Which one do you wish you'd picked? That is, knowing what you know now, which campaign would have yielded up the footage for your idea of the best documentary?

The market on Huckabee and Romney has completely crashed.

They are near zero this morning.

"Crack Found in Man's Buttocks."

It's a real headline. (Via Language Log.)

Who are the best actors to have won the best actor Oscar?

Answers here. And the worst to have won? Here. (Via Throwing Things.)

I agree that Al Pacino was a terrible ham in "Scent of a Woman." (And I love Al Pacino. "Dog Day Afternoon" Al Pacino.) Was Dustin Hoffman really terrible in "Rain Man"? He was certainly annoying, but wasn't that the point? You know who was even more annoying in "Rain Man" than Dustin Hoffman? (I ran across it on TV the other day, so this is fresh in my mind.) Valeria Golino. I was going to watch that movie again, but she drove me up the wall. Sorry, that's off the topic of actors, but I just wanted to nail down that one little point of personal opinion, and I get to do things like that because I'm blllllogggggggingggg.

"After his week of immigration-based Hispandering, Obama didn't even mention those issues (or Latinos) in his laundry-listish Election Night speech."

Mickey Kaus seems pleased that Obama's tactics didn't work too well in California.

"We're still on our feet, and much to the amazement of many, we're getting there, folks, we're getting there."

Huckabee reemerges.

He won the South. Did he win it because of something about the South, or because he has so little money that he had to concentrate it somewhere?
Ed Rollins, Huckabee's chief political strategist, said he would be astonished if Huckabee has spent more than $10 million on his candidacy....

But Huckabee focused his limited resources almost exclusively on the Southeast, with old-fashioned, retail politicking. He presented himself as the only true social conservative in the race, jabbing at Romney as a flip-flopper as he pulled conservatives disenchanted with McCain into his orbit.

"Conservatives had the opportunity to pick a real conservative in the South," Rollins said. "And they did."

Even as McCain was claiming the mantle of front-runner in his victory speech last night, he was compelled to congratulate Huckabee on his sweep of the South. "Not for the first time, he surprised the rest of us," McCain said.
So McCain is handling this gracefully. Meanwhile, Romney has been a clod about Huckabee:
Over the past weeks, Romney has said repeatedly that Huckabee was more a nuisance than a threat, a candidate who should drop out of the race and leave it to the only two Republicans who could reasonably claim to be contenders for the nomination. Huckabee complained during last week's California debate that he was being treated as a third wheel....

Romney supporters and aides continued to show Huckabee little respect despite the Super Tuesday victories....

"He deserves credit for hanging in there and being the winsome personality he's been. We've all enjoyed him," said Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), a Romney backer. "But everybody knows Mike is not going to be in the final two. That hasn't changed."
Coming from a campaign that isn't doing very well, that haughtiness is ridiculous. "We've all enjoyed him"? That's so patronizing. It's got to push the religious conservatives even more strongly toward Huckabee. And it gives Huckabee more material for his folksy jokiness:
"I've got to say that Mitt Romney was right about one thing — this is a two-man race. He was just wrong about who the other man in the race was. It's me, not him."

"This is the nuttiest thing in the freaking world. It's not propaganda. It's not part of a campaign."

"There's no corporation behind it — the record company couldn't get involved. I did it on my own. The only thing behind it is the people. And that's like, wow!" Will.i.am exclaims about all the love for his Obama song, "Yes We Can."

Do you have a "work spouse"?

23% of employees in some poll said they did — they had someone at work who plays something like a spousal role, someone who's a source of "mental and emotional support" and even "bickering." And sex? Well, according to the article, they know where to draw the line, and they keep it "platonic." If you've got one of those relationships, here's the test:
• Would you behave the same way if your romantic partner were standing next to you?

• Are your flirtations consistent with the way you normally behave?

• Are you thinking about your "work spouse" while not at work?

• Do you compare your "work spouse" to your real romantic partner?
Those questions are from Heidi Reeder, associate professor of communication at Boise State University in Idaho, who thinks it's good to have a work spouse (who doesn't cross the line): "It's an esteem booster for both men and women to have a little flirtation in their day -- it makes them feel a little better, gives them a little more energy."

Surely, we can think of some better questions.

Does everyone in the office think you're having an affair?

Do you find yourself thinking: Thank God, it's Monday?

ADDED: Another question I thought of for the test:
  • Does this person look like someone you'd date if you were free?

The White House belongs in Smith Center, Kansas.

So thought the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:
He called for the demolition of all toxic buildings and unhealthy urban environments, even the demolition of historic landmarks if they were not built according to “Vedic architecture in harmony with Natural Law.”
There are so many interesting things you can think up and purvey when you're a self-styled spiritual leader. A guru. There was a time when we Americans didn't use — hadn't heard — the word "guru." That was before the Maharishi, who had to be some kind of genius to have figured out how to use that most sensational vehicle for reaching the minds of everyone in the world: The Beatles:
Maharishi, what have you done?
You made a fool of everyone.
Maharishi, ooh, what have you done?...

Maharishi, how did you know?
The world was waiting just for you...
Maharish, oooh, how did you know?

Maharishi, you'll get yours yet
However big you think you are...
Maharishi, ooh, you'll get yours yet.
And so, Maharishi finally has got his. Dead in Vlodrop, Netherlands, at an age somewhere beyond 90.

Super Super Tuesday Tuesday Fat Bowl.

I abandoned you, dear readers, last night. It was Super Tuesday, yet also Fat Tuesday, and for many here in New York it was still the Super Bowl — or Super Bowl afterglow. So: Super Super Tuesday Tuesday Fat Bowl.

Where was I when you were driving up the comments number in last night's post?

I'd love to say that I was out carousing with fans who lined the Canyon of Heroes for the big parade yesterday. Or that I was fabulously costumed and celebrating Mardi Gras. But I was calmly re-ensconced in my Brooklyn Heights apartment, eating 2 bowls of Golean Crunch cereal and drinking C-Boost.

It seemed, after all this blogging about the 2008 Campaign, that I should be supremely excited about watching the election returns, but my attention wandered, and I found myself talking on the telephone and watching "American Idol." (I don't care much about "American Idol." It's just cozily familiar.) After agreeing to do some TV commentary, I was glad it got canceled.

I think there's something about me and voting returns. I tend to lose interest. I like following the campaign, but why?

I'm really not very interested in politics. I'd be moderately satisfied having any of the major candidates as President. I write about politics because I'm absorbed by the dynamics of the fight and the rhetoric. (I feel much the same way about Supreme Court cases.) I'm not actually rooting for anyone, and so the news of who has actually won bores me a little. I can read it in a second on-line at any point. I don't really need to see Wolf Blitzer dramatize it for hours on end.

And yet, somehow, I feel that it's my role to dramatize the election returns for you (or — God help me — for some TV audience). This morning, it's staring me in the face that I'm not that kind of person at all. I'm not going to rise to this occasion. It was obvious — why do I keep denying it? — that I'm this way back in November 2004 when I was watching the election returns. All I wrote here that evening was one post:
Yes, I care a lot about the outcome of the election, and I'm sitting here waiting for the news to come in, sampling the dribbled out exit polls, and fretting. But at the same time, I feel complete assurance that as soon as the outcome is known, I'll fully accept it. Either man will make a decent enough President. I think Bush deserves to continue in office, but if it is to be Kerry, Kerry can handle the job too. Both of my sons support Kerry, and shouldn't I want them to be happy? Despite all this political blogging, I'm not really all that political. Note the subheading above. ["Feeling a strange, nervous equanimity."] It will be nice to break loose from the grip of politics that has held us for so long. As I blogged long ago, I've had preferences in presidential elections going all the way back to 1960, and only one man I've supported has been President. (In case you've forgotten or are not a long-time reader, that man was Bill Clinton.) I'm accustomed to spending election night seeing my man lose. I've even had the experience before of supporting an incumbent who loses when I did not support him the time that he won. (For new or forgetful readers, that would be Jimmy Carter.) Basically, I am a grand supporter of losers. My support is the kiss of death. Oh, no! Have I gone all pessimistic? No, no. It is equanimity that flows through me. Time for a nice glass of win, a plate of pasta with Bolognese sauce, and a calm absorption of reality.

UPDATE: "A nice glass of win" -- ah, so hope does live on! Time for a nice glass of wine and toast to hope! A glass to be refilled later, perhaps, in a quenching of sorrow!

ANOTHER UPDATE: 10:53 p.m. Maybe I am going to get that nice glass of win after all. I'm really surprised. I let those exit polls affect me. Then I called up my sister in Florida and ended up talking with her for a long time, just watching the numbers on the TV screen with the sound off, so I wasn't getting any punditizing and wasn't drawing conclusions about much of anything. I got off the phone, and it took a while for me to absorb it, but eventually I got the message that everything was trending toward Bush.
So there you have it, the Althousian viewpoint. I keep forgetting this is the way I am. There I was doing it again last night.

I need to remember myself and not create the impression that I'm another one of these political bloggers. I'm really not like them. My C-Span appearance got canceled because the blogger on the other side — I was told, late in the day — backed out. Side? I hadn't even been informed that I was booked to take a side. But — I protested, after it didn't matter anymore — I'm not on a side. I'm not able — I'm not willing — to hold up a side. My stress about going on the show was retroactively intensified. I had no business agreeing to do that.

So my relief felt like even more of a crash. Have I had a migraine headache for days? Or am I allergic to something in that Golean Crunch? What the hell is in that anyway? Chicory root! Should that be in cereal? I took a hot shower and curled up in bed. I was thinking maybe I'll analyze the rhetoric of the various speeches in the morning blogging but I don't need to know the results now. Why stay up, when all the news will be there to read in 1 minute when I get up? I fell asleep.

This morning, looking for that old 2004 election night post, I also found this, written the next day:
I know they can't help it, those people who are gearing up for '08. I got into my car to drive to work this morning, clicked on the radio, and the first thing I heard was some talk radio guy raving against Hillary Clinton in '08. How absurd! And then there are those pro-Kerry websites that want to keep fighting out the futile battle of the Ohio provisional ballots. Ugh! I'm not going to tell you dyed-in-the-wool politicos to give it a rest. For you, it is like breathing. You must go on. But many of us are glad to have a chance to return to normal life. Politics is part of life, but the election fight is over now. It's already taken too much time.
Ah, I need to get my bearings and keep them. It's Lent now, and a good time for reflection.

Am I giving up politics or just Golean Crunch? I'm giving up my forgetting the true nature of my interest in politics. I need to be careful to do only what I want to do, to write what I want.

UPDATE: I've rethought my suspicions. I don't think it's the Golean Crunch with its chicory root that is making me feel poisoned. I think it's the C-Boost, with its Echinacea, Astragalus and Maitake Mushrooms — ingredients that seem vaguely medicinal — and with its camu camu fruit, acerola cherries, and — not least of all — mango. Mango, you know, contains urushiol, which is the poison in poison ivy.

ADDED, 6/10/08: I was just writing this post and I gave it the tag "Albert Camus," and so then, following my usual practice, I did a search in Blogger for all the old posts with "camus" and added the "Albert Camus" tag to all of them. I clicked the tag to see all the Camus posts on one page and read this post again. It's interesting, but what on earth has it got to do with Camus? Ah! It's the camu camu fruit! Blogger helps you out by grouping plurals and singulars together. I find it charming to put the old French writer together with the fruit I was so suspicious of, so I'll leave the tag here.

February 5, 2008

Watching the Super Tuesday results.

We're about to hear a lot of news as the polls close in 5 minutes in many states. Stay tuned.

ADDED: Oh? Am I underblogging today? Sorry. I'm tired. I was up at 4 to catch a flight from Madison to New York. Our plane had a near miss coming into LaGuardia, but I was napping and didn't notice the slowing and speeding and slowing maneuver. I woke up to hear the pilot describe it after the fact, and at that point, it's no scarier than something that happens to someone else. Aptly, class today was the right to die. And there was all that stress over the TV show that I didn't do. I was relieved to get off the hook. I've hit the wall. To tell you the truth, I'm watching "American Idol" — and just checking the primary news on line as I go. That Lushington girl was pretty cool. Love the name.

TV alert. UPDATE: Cancelled.

I'm going to do some Super Tuesday commentary tonight on C-Span, some time between 8 and 9 ET. Help me think up some things to say.

UPDATE: Well, now, I can settle back and luxuriate in the flow of results and commentary, because we aren't going to do it, for various reasons.

"For Republicans, there's only one candidate of hope: Hillary Rodham Clinton."

Says Rich Lowry.

"Hence we shave our beards that we may seem purified by innocence and humility..."

"... and that we may be like the angels who remain always in the bloom of youth."

The history of shaving and religion.

"I'm giving up giving a rat's ass about the Presidential race, for Lent."

It's not just Super Tuesday. It's Mardi Gras. Last night, the subject of what to give up for Lent came up. That is, one commenter started a digression with: "Hey Althouse: What will you be giving up for Lent?" (I've asked to be called "Althouse," so that's not as rude as it looks.) I said "Give me some ideas. I won't give up blogging. Maybe food." Anyway, the title line is what Revenant said.

Hillary Clinton on Letterman.

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

February 4, 2008

"I blog for the hell of it, to express myself, and to figure out the world as I go along, the best I can."

Andrew Sullivan explains his motivation for blogging. He gets paid too (a lot, I've heard), which he also notes. I like that description of the motivation for blogging, though I don't quite buy Sullivan's denial that he's trying to affect real-world policy.

"'Well, I said I would not tear up; already we're not exactly on the path,' Clinton said with emotion..."

Oh, no. Not again....

IN THE COMMENTS: Suggestions for a new Hillary theme song. Here's mine:

Do you give a damn who Maria Shriver endorses?

I consider this the most boring news in the world. Because first ladies are insubstantial figureheads.

Hmmmmm.....

"I hope this gets you fired, you're obviously stupid.... There's plenty of proof 9/11 was an inside job. Try reading, if you know how.....lololol."

I've got a feeling conspiracy theorists are out to get me.

Super Tuesday is tomorrow.

What will you be looking for?

IN THE COMMENTS: Beth answers my question from New Orleans: "Zulu coconuts. Marching bands. Hip hop brass bands. My friends in outlandish costumes. A clean public bathroom."

When Puddles became Panchito.

The mayor was disgraced.

February 3, 2008

"The only time I feel all right is by your side."



Hanne Hukkelberg... Norwegian... doing Kinks.

ADDED: Is YouTube down?

AND: It was. It's back up, and so is the embedded video.

"You may rest assured that I, and hundreds of supporters, will continue to contact you, by email, phone, and perhaps in-person requests...."

An excerpt from the most recent email received from a 9/11 conspiracy theorist.

UPDATE: Comments from a 9/11 conspiracy website (which I won't link to). They're reacting to my statement ("I don't know why the University of Wisconsin has not rehired 9/11 conspiracy believer Kevin Barrett to teach a course on the history of Islam. But if we know a person believes something truly nutty, are we not entitled to use that as evidence of his intelligence, judgment, and trustworthiness?") and to my rejection of a proposal that I debate Barrett (to which I responded, by email, that I would no more debate a 9/11 truther than I would a Nazi or a Klansman).
It appears that Ann Althouse is deranged. How can UW employee her? She insults Kevin Barrett's position on 9/11, but refuses to debate him. This is not rational behavior....

Why does UW continue to employee the increasingly incoherent Ann Althouse? She obviously has some type of mental disorder. The evidence of 9/11 as an inside job by people high in this administration is overwhelming. It only takes a modicum of research to understand that.....

Anyone as incoherent as Ann Althouse has no business teaching at a state university.

***

As a Wisconsite [sic] who is proud of our tradition of fair playing regarding all points of view, I questioned her conduct and told her I thought we had left Joe McCarthy's way in the world in our past.

I invited her to consider moving to another state where this kind of conduct in someone in her position would be seen as appropriate.

Maybe if she...and her boss...get a few more of these from those who pay their salaries, they will think twice about this.

***

Personally, I feel, it's time to push back--well past time!

Ms. Altman [sic] is a one-sided narrow-minded hippocrit [sic].

...and don't believe her!
Most recent email from a 9/11 "truther" —
You are the one defending the Fascist Nazi like regime we unfortunately call America these days. Turning a blind eye to the truth and calling people looking for the truth Nazis is truly the most deplorable position I know of. For those you defend will not a rats ass about you in the end. May you forever rot in the hell you have earned and rightly deserve.
AND: Another email:
I can't wait for you to debate the 'official' bullshit 9/11 lies, ass! I hope this gets you fired, you're obviously stupid. Do you read, books? There's plenty of proof 9/11 was an inside job. Try reading, if you know how.....lololol.

MORE:
there are only three choices for you girly..
1) You suffer from a severe case of cognizant dissonance (I hope);
2) you are an evil troll-shill for the perps who carried out the evil plan (most likely);
3) or you are just plain stupid(higly probabable), and you know absolutely nothing about controlled demolition, conservation of momentum(and the laws of physics in general), the effects of the transfer of heat though metal structures, load bearing, avionics, flight data recording interpretation....AND who really runs this world.

In any event you should not be permitted to teach anything to anyone...
those that carried out 9-11 will eventully be brought to the harshest form of acceptable legal justice, including their punk-ass neo-con supporters (like you). You think you know "law" now???...just wait. It will take a while to get to you lower level operatives but they will get to you. People like you are only ten minutes between this world and a better one.
YOU SUCK!

I'm not watching the Superbowl.

Sorry, I just don't care. Except I heard that one team cheated. So I hope the other team wins. I did just hear Arlen Specter on C-Span radio talking about how Congress ought to investigate that cheating team because football is so important to America. My tax money is supposed to go into making sure some people playing a game don't cheat? Why doesn't he check out whether people playing Scrabulous on Facebook are using Scrabble Helper? God forbid he should confirm some judges or something more tediously congressional.

UPDATE: Actually, I'm watching now. Checking out the HD camerawork and the commercials — which are strangely appealing to women and look terrific in HD. Hey, Charlie Brown got the Coke. That's nice! Anyway, I was amused to see the lineup on the other channels. It's so obviously things they think will appeal to people who don't want to watch the Super Bowl. Like "Music of Seal on Ice." That is not a joke. UHD is showing "Music of Seal on Ice." Hilarious! Let's see. What else? "Auntie Mame," "Sense and Sensibility," "Legally Blonde,""The Parent Trap," "Indigo Girls: Live at the Roxy"...

Ooh! Touchdown Giants! I approve.

ADDED: Hey, I'm enjoying this.

AND: That was pretty cool. Love the 1 second thing....

+: NY!

"Not only will I won’t quit, I can’t.”

Not only will I won't make fun of Huckabee talk, I don't want to. I think it's cool... and probably Southern, and I'm guessing Southerners will won't appreciate it.

A trace of ass cleavage: obscene in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

I'm sure Abercrombie & Fitch is loving the publicity.

ADDED: Related Flickr group (NSFW).

"You know what charm is: a way of getting the answer yes without having asked any clear question."

Obama's appeal to Republicans.

The "charm" quote is from Albert Camus. (Does Camus warrant his own tag here on the Althouse blog? Click on it and see!)

Anyway, getting beyond the "charm" point, there's more (from this WaPo column by Peter Wehner): Republicans don't like the Clintons. (Let's ignore Ann Coulter's latest stunt to get FoxNews to aim cameras at her.) And why shouldn't Republicans want the President, if he/she is to be a Democrat, to be someone who offers to bring us together?

His biggest problem winning over conservatives and moderates is that he's a big liberal. Is that going to change? Wehner thinks it could, especially if Obama learns from... Bill Clinton.

If Romney won a caucus in the extreme northeast...

... and nobody noticed, would it mean a damned thing?

Mitt Romney never wins, because every time he does, it doesn't seem to count. What a loser!

ADDED: You know, the new Zogby poll has Romney ahead in California. That's after Schwarzenegger endorsed McCain. The McCain campaign has been good at creating the impression that McCain is inevitable. Would that tend to make Romney holdouts get in line in the name of party unity? There are a lot of Republicans that hate McCain so much they don't even want the party that he would lead. But quite aside from that, I think it's awfully strange for McCain to be perceived as the clear favorite when his polling and vote count numbers are only in the low 30s. They are much lower than the second-place candidate on the Democratic side. Speaking of the Democratic side, the inevitability theme didn't work too well for Hillary Clinton. The trend in the primaries this year is for the people in each new state to make their decision without looking back to the states that have gone before.

AND: The NYT has no story of any kind on the Maine caucus. Not even a squib.

"They stopped what they were doing and stood... like frozen."

This is very cool. I have a low tolerance for performance art. I'm old enough to clearly remember when these things were called "happenings." I also remember be-ins and love-ins. So don't get cute, don't get in my face with your art. I think you are annoying... most of you. But this one charms me.

(Via The Anchoress.)

Hillary Clinton copies Barack Obama's chants.

Yesterday, I was listening to the radio — XM's "POTUS" channel — and I heard Hillary Clinton giving a speech at a rally. I was surprised to hear the crowd start chanting "yes we can." "Yes we can" is a chant that Barack Obama very conspicuously got started the night of the New Hampshire primary. I couldn't imagine why Clinton or her supporters would think it is to their advantage to evoke Barack Obama like that.

And the weird thing is, she's ripped off his slogan before:





An emailer tells me that the Clinton chanters aren't saying "yes we can," but "yes she can." A news report confirms it:
Throughout the rally, supporters waved Hillary signs, wore shirts with logos such as, "Got experience?," and chanted, "Yes she can."
My emailer snarks:
[It] kind of sums up the difference between their two candidacies (hers is about her, his is about us).
That's funny, but in fact we are electing a President. "We" are not going to be doing the job, that one individual is. The only thing we are going to do is pick the person who will take over the immense job of running the country. So Hillary's phrase really is more apt. It's just lame to copy Barack. And she's done it (at least) twice. As we make our choice, it's true that experience counts, but so does judgment, and on this small point of copying chants, Hillary's judgment was poor.