Kristol: Obama, Hitler, blah, blah,blah.

kristol_pieThere’s a theory about Bill Kristol and his brief tenure as columnist for the New York Times (and before you object to my use of the adjective “brief,” please note that a root canal typically only takes about a half hour to an hour even though it feels like an eternity, and that William Safire, by contrast, spent 32 years as a Times columnist). The theory is that Kristol actually viewed his Times column with contempt; that he put little if any effort into his writings, “phoning them in,” as it were, and picking up a handsome paycheck for an average of fifteen minutes of work per week. Let’s call this theory the “laughing all the way to the bank” theory of William Kristol.

But there’s another theory about William Kristol’s output during that time, that I’d like to call the “no, you see, Kristol really is that stupid” theory. According to this theory, William Kristol did, in fact, devote himself to his column with an admirable sense of dedication and due respect for the position he had filled as one of the Times two regular conservative columnists. It’s just that he’s really, really stupid.

Now, as with most debates the truth of the matter may lie somewhere in between these dueling positions, but I think Kritstol’s latest column in his new home, the Washington Post, tends to lend more credence to the second… a lot more. The column is titled “A World Without Nukes — Just Like 1939” and really, you don’t need to read any further to grasp the full depth of just how awful the rest of the column is. In fact, from now on I’d probably recommend that Kristol just come up with a snappy, incredibly asinine title for all his future columns and cut and paste a random article from Wikipedia into the body of the piece because… I mean, really… for fuck’s sake Kristol: “A World Without Nukes — Just Like 1939”? Are you serious? Couldn’t you think of something a bit less preposterous, like, say: “Barack Obama is Hitler’s Clone.”

Now, as much as I’d advise those whose time has actual monetary value attached to it to not waste it reading Kristol’s column, it must be noted that in passing it over you will be missing gems like this:

The war that began in that nuclear-free world led to a crash project to develop nuclear weapons. It ended with America’s use of them — something Obama alluded to: “As a nuclear power, as the only nuclear power to have used a nuclear weapon, the United States has a moral responsibility to act.”

It’s not clear whether this statement implies disapproval of our use of nuclear weapons in 1945. It’s telling, however, that Obama never referred in his Prague speech to the Second World War. Instead, he called the existence of thousands of nuclear weapons “the most dangerous legacy of the Cold War.” This framework makes it possible to think of a world without nuclear weapons as a logical response to the end of that conflict: “Today, the Cold War has disappeared but thousands of those weapons have not.”

You see, while it’s true that the Cold War is by any reasonable definition of the term “over,” the Second World War is most decidedly not and unilaterally disarming would just invite an attack by Hitler’s android-mecha army from deep within the South American jungle where the Nazis have been regrouping and researching a new generation of futuristic, secret weapons.

Plus we have other enemies to think about, too, and Obama is clearly not ready to deal with them either. Not only is he not invading North Korea yet (And why not, Mr. Obama, when every U.S. president before you invaded that country at least twice within his first 100 days?) but there’s also Iran to consider:

“We want Iran to take its rightful place in the community of nations, politically and economically. We will support Iran’s right to peaceful nuclear energy with rigorous inspections. That’s a path the Islamic Republic can take. Or the government can choose increased isolation, international pressure, and a potential nuclear arms race in the region that will increase insecurity for all.”

Obviously, Obama recommends the first path. But notice what he didn’t do. He didn’t say that a nuclear armed Iranian regime is unacceptable. He didn’t express a commitment to preventing such an outcome, or confidence that the United States and international community will prevent such an outcome. He simply suggested that it wouldn’t be optimal for Iran to choose that outcome.

You see, Obama’s the kind of guy who, if a terrorist threatened to blow up a school bus full of first graders would be all: “Do whetever you want, my friend, but blowing up the school bus probably isn’t your optimal strategy.”

At least that’s what he’d say if Kristol got to write the script.

73 comments:

11:14 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Certainly, in the time that’s passed in the world outside Bill Kristol’s head since 1939, things have changed. For instance, the entire concept of an organized, armed military invasion, anywhere, is now nearly ludicrous. And obviously nuking all the jihadists who are hiding among civilians is an appropriate response. Sure Bill, we need to hold onto the nukes, because we might need them some day.

11:15 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

I think this will create the final rift in the GOP between the two camps: the “Obama is Hitler’s Clone” camp and the white supremacists who think Hitler was misunderstood and are offended that the black Mooslem is being compared to their hero.

11:17 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Please. You made me think about Kristol. I thing I rarely if ever do. I subscribe to the really he is that stupid school. But at least he didn’t write about something really important like the English language. Safire didn’t understand the first thing about English.

But if you think that Kristol is a fool try reading the output of its theatre dept.

11:21 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

BREAKING HARD: Vermont legislature overrides governor’s veto; gay marriage legalized. M0re head asplosions imminent.

11:24 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Kristol Meh forgot to mention Aliens. Without nookulars we won’t have anything to defend ourselves from Mars Attacks Martians, Lizards from V, those lame Independence Day guys, the Scientology Psychlos or V’ger.

11:24 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@rptrcub: Now that’s news we can believe in.

11:25 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@rptrcub:

Wheeeee! Freedom is on the march. And by “freedom” I mean actual freedom, not theocratic gloom.

11:27 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

rptrcub: And, notably: there would be no state-line marriage chapels. Vermont has no billboards, you see, pursuant to state law; thus, picking out the chapel from, say, the store or the post office would be fairly hard to do. Drives down business.

Gov. Jim Douglas has always impressed me as being an old-school, moderate type, like Jim Jeffords. (Maybe my theory’s based solely on the fact that both of them are named “Jim.” Huh.) But he got smacked down anyway. Nicely done.

Maple syrup for everybody!

11:30 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Incidentally, check out the video of the vote at the Burlington Free Press. When I get my banana republic going, I’m going to have my token legislature outfitted to look like that. Regal, yet flinty. Oh, New England!

11:36 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

To my earlier point about Jim Douglas: he appeared to be a bit wobbly on the veto message. Perhaps that was an honest assessment of the matter, or a political calculation. Either way, he could have manned up and signed the thing, but didn’t. Anyways.

11:40 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

We got civil unioned in Vt right after they made it legal. In a hotel in Bennington. The JP appeared in bermuda shorts. He was taking a break from delivering the mail. Everybody was very welcoming and very nice.

11:43 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Q: Does Vermont have a California-fuckedup-esque referendum process?

11:59 am • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau: I ordered some 3-year Shelbourne Farms cheddar today out of respect for the great state of Vermont. Also, it’s Grilled Cheese Month.

12:02 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

rptrcub: A: It wouldn’t surprise me if they did. This is the land of Town Meeting Day, of course. It’s old-school direct democracy. (Of course: the last couple of Town Meeting Days have featured referenda on impeaching Cheney and Dubya. So there’s that.)

Rules that I actually know about: Legislature is biennial and, once they are done meeting for this year, do not come back until 2011. Town Meeting Day doesn’t happen again until March. So you could see a groundswell of activity on this next year.

12:03 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Dodgerblue: Grilled Cheese needs a month? Anytime is a good time for Grilled Cheese!

12:06 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

“What’s the ug-liest pa-art of your body? What’s the ug-liest pa-art of your body? Some say your nose…some say your toes. I think it’s your mi-ind!”
– Frank Zappa/Mothers of invention

I fucking KNOW it’s your mind, man! Punditry is the last refuge of a scoundrel, and the preferred occupation of the conservative. Sorry, Charlie! Even if all the insight in the world were swept into a pile, you lot wouldn’t have any idea what to do with a pinch. Kristol, you’re through. You blew a chance to establish some kind of foothold in a world requiring thought, responsibility, and ideas. Based on what I’ve seen of
your career pre- and post- NYT, you had no chance (zilchville) of making
any kind of mark for yourself or your running-dog henchmen of the right.

12:12 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

DEVELOPING HARD: Reuters says that GM is in “intense, earnest” preparations for a bankruptcy filing. Hang on, everybody!

[ADD: Moody’s says that survival of Chrysler now down to about 3:1 against. But we knew that, really.]

12:24 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Dodgerblue: Don’t know them, but any excuse to stock up on Cabot Seriously Sharp is ok by me.

12:29 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau: Oh oh … better not put a deposit on that Camaro SS. I can’t decide whether it’s the automotive equivalent of a mullet.

12:50 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Dodgerblue: I think I will stand up in solidarity with my Vermont friends and buy a pint of Ben & Jerry’s for dinner tonight. And then listen to one of Mr. SFL’s Phish shows.

@rptrcub: I posed your question to a friend who lives in Middlebury, will let you know the answer. But check out Five Thirty Eight and Nate Silver’s analysis of various states’ voting trends on gay marriage.

1:02 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau:

Shame, because I really like the new Challenger. Seeing quite a few of them around, too.

If you want to know why the auto industry is in such a mess all you have to do is observe what happens whenever an American dares to criticize his own country. Inevitably the response is (a) why do you hate America and (b) if you don’t like it why don’t you leave. Unfortunately (c) how can we make it better, doesn’t seem to be a viable option. As in politics so it has been in economics. The result is we bathe in a sea of ignorance and arrogance as the rest of the industrialized world over-takes us, building products that put our complacent asses to shame.

1:02 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@SanFranLefty: At least it might come to Georgia by 2019, barring a SCOTUS intervention in favor and/or regained right wing control of guvmint.

1:15 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@rptrcub: Okay, I have the answer to your question. In Vermont, voter referendum come about only when the Legislature votes to refer it to the voters to decide. Given the Legislature just passed a veto-proof bill, needless to say it is highly unlikely they will turn around and pass a referendum referral to overturn how they voted.

So it’s solid, baby!

1:18 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

DEVELOPING [yaaaaaawn] HARD: Final votes counted in Coleman/Cornyn/Etc. v Franken/DFL/Etc. Franken gains votes, and is now 312 votes to the good. And so the dance of the appellate system begins in earnest. Ya.

1:18 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@rptrcub: Without double-checking, my vague recollection is that the Vermont referendum process is full of molasses. There’s no initiative: the legislature has to propose a ballot measure, the voters have to approve it, and then the legislature has to vote on it again. Something like that.

This one’s locked in, at least for a few years.

(Or you could just go with SFL’s reading.)

1:23 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@SanFranLefty: @nojo: Awesomeness! Anyone know of any Vermont maple syrup-flavored alcoholic beverages? If not, I could come up with a recipe for a sticky sweet celebration cocktail…

1:33 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

And let me get a little ahead of the curve here: The Mormons wasted their money. They saw California as a Maginot Line of gay marriage: If Prop 8 was defeated here, the nation would soon follow. Seems Iowa and Vermont don’t care about our collective opinion.

1:37 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@nojo:

Of course, the cherry on the top of that sundae would be if the California Supremes overturned Prop. Hate… but alas, in my heart of hearts, I fear it is not to be.

1:39 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@rptrcub: Nope, though I did have a revelation this weekend vis-à-vis mint juleps (that is, to replace the simple syrup with honey). Only three-and-a-half weeks to Derby, y’all!

1:43 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Tommmcatt the Wet Sprocket: They’ll let it stand, since the legal case against it is something of a stretch, and not presented very well by Jerry’s kid. But if someone can get it on the ballot again, I think the results will be different.

1:45 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@rptrcub: Ooh, I like the instructions on this one:

The Maple Leaf

2 oz Bourbon
1/2 oz Maple Syrup
1/2 oz Lemon Juice

Shake and strain into a cocktail glass filled with crush ice. Drink on a porch with an old dog.

1:50 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

I just like that the AP article actually quotes a guys whose job is to collect sap to make maple syrup. I mean, you think the gays are stereotyped?

2:18 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@homofascist: At least they’re not subject to jokes about cornholes like Iowans.

@mellbell: I’ll have to try that one. Sitting on a porch, however, is not an option today, where it fucking spit snow. In Atlanta. In April.

2:19 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Speaking of Wimpy Appeasers:

“Our people would cheer if we got rid of the missiles.”

Ronald Reagan, Reykjavik.

2:20 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Oh, mellbell — that sounds delightful.

Stinque Fun Fact of the Day: 460,000 voting age people live in Vermont, and there are 150 members of the lower house. That comes to, roughly, 3000 voters per member (not all of whom vote). So: getting into the State Legislature is not that all that hard, all things considered.

But getting bounced is, in theory, surprisingly easy. If you piss off just one voter, that could spell real doom. Seriously. In an off-year election with 50 percent turnout (assumptions, assumptions), a one percent swing on the margin turns on the votes of fifteen people. If you get two hundred people to switch, the last election’s laugher could turn into a wild upset. A concerted effort, then, across the state could spell trouble.

But anyways.

2:23 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

homofascist: Get Uncle Bureau in Vermont to talk about the dairy industry. First he’ll tell you all the ways in which you don’t know what you’re talking about, and then sit back with a cup of coffee for about five minutes, because he will lay it down for you, line by line. (And put lots of butter on your bread — “attaboy, help out Vermont farmers!”)

2:23 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau: True, but everyone was fretting over whether the Vermont House would have enough votes to override the Guv. That came in at 100 – 49.

No telling whether there’ll be a Sap Party over this, but it seems a lot of political calculations were in favor of marriage equality.

2:28 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

nojo: No way the wingnuts would create a “Sap Party.” The use of this name could only be possible if the hard-core thumpers who would organize such a beast had a sense of humor about anything.

(Incidentally, after the vote was finished [but the result was not yet officially announced], one of the dead-enders stood up to explain her vote, and went off on what she perceived as anti-religion, anti-Catholic bias in the chamber. Noted. Not worth very much, but noted just the same.)

2:32 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@rptrcub: Right. Maple syrup doesn’t really work as lube.

2:35 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

And a question to the larger Stinque audience of people smarter than me: what is the read on the Stevens case being dismissed in Alaska? Why would the Bush Justice Department have gone after him and committed such misconduct? And how with the wingers try to blame Obama/Democrats? And, seriously, isn’t he a little sleazy?

2:37 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Oh, lookee here: Per (another) vote today, D.C. recognizes same-sex marriages done elsewhere. This is wonder–

Wait. (Checks book filled with laws and stuff.)

So sorry. Congress holds the purse-strings. Coburn, Cornyn, Inhofe et al will bottle up D.C. appropriations over this for so long that it will pick up a rick, oaky flavor with hints of chocolate, cherries and apples. Home rule FAIL.

2:40 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau: Notwithstanding Arlen Specter, Olympia Snowe, and Susan Collins actually doing the right thing.

2:42 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@homofascist:

I say back-room payoff. And not the kind we like, lil’ cowboy.

2:47 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

rptrcub: Well, Arlen cannot be counted on. He basically got a free roll on EFCA from the unions, and apparently still will vote no on it. And I think that Olympia and Susan are wobbly on this.

But you can be sure that this goes into the fundraising letters in re Block Franken By Any Means Necessary.

[ADD: There’s also the anonymous hold thing that Senators can do, still. That’s immune to any sort of, you know, voting.]

3:02 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau: Ah, yes. On the one hand, the ban on needle exchange funding was lifted in 2007. On the other hand, the voting rights bill (2009 redux) was chugging along just fine until the usual suspects derailed it. (The Fairness Doctrine, Sen. DeMint? Srsly?)

3:07 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau: When will Franken actually be seated? When Mississippi legalizes gay marriage in 2024? (Link stolen from SFL… thank you dahling.)

3:17 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

“Only three-and-a-half weeks to Derby, y’all!”

Q: Is Mellbell our new Queen of Sport?

3:25 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@homofascist: Bushies who screwed up Stevens case in big trouble.

WASHINGTON — A furious federal judge on Tuesday took the extraordinary step of ordering that the prosecutors who bungled the case of former Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska be investigated for possible criminal wrongdoing.

Judge Emmet G. Sullivan dismissed the charges against Mr. Stevens, which was expected given the way the case has disintegrated since the conviction in October. But the judge went well beyond that step, declaring that what the prosecutors did was the worst “mishandling or misconduct that I’ve seen in my 25 years.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/08/us/politics/08stevens.html?hp

3:27 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@redmanlaw: We did an ad hoc Derby liveblog at CP last year, when Raging Monk kept raising the subject. Now that Mellbell’s bringing it up, I guess we should make it a tradition.

Damn thing’s over in a minute, however. Maybe we should open the bar an hour early.

3:29 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@nojo: The Stinque Derby blog is decadent and depraved.

3:30 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

rptrcub: Oh, Nate Silver. Is there no number you can’t crunch?

3:37 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@nojo: Two minutes, thank you very much.

3:41 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@mellbell: With this crowd, that equals twice as much drinking.

3:41 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau: Nate blew the Oscars, so the answer is Yes.

3:58 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@chicago bureau:

“…a one percent swing on the margin turns on the votes of fifteen people” – cb

Well that explains it. Clearly some of my libertarian brethren got lost on the way to New Hampshire and have skewed the Vermont demographics. An easy mistake. I’ve not spent that much time in NE, but I could see how it could happen. I mean – unfold the map the wrong way and you are in the wrong state. No one could tell the difference.

I never bought into this FSP strategy. Any location with a sufficiently small population base is likely to be unfit for human habitation most of the year.

Why do the socialists get all the temperate and tropical geography? It just does not seem fair.

BTW CB – I note the Cubbies are undefeated so far this year, and the Bears have a real QB. This could be the golden age of Chicago sports.

And yes – I am reaching for anything to avoid finishing my taxes.

4:04 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@redmanlaw: Just re-read the Page 2 column HST wrote just after the towers fell on 9/11. Dude still had it, hermano.

@nojo: Combine it with a Jam (hats!) and a Derby pool, and you have a winner.

@libertarian tool: Sweden has a temperate climate?

4:05 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@libertarian tool: Said QB having been freed of his bondage with the Broncos.

4:12 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Nabisco: If I’m not mistaken, the Derby is May 2 — the first Saturday of the month, or Jam Day. So we’re covered there.

And if Mellbell can find a Derby pool online, I’m all for promoting it. Anything to embarrass Tommcatt even further.

4:14 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Nabisco: So long as people are ok with the luck of the draw (traditionally determined by pulling slips of paper out of a comically oversized hat).

4:20 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@mellbell: My first and only one of those I got upset because I arrived thinking I’d get to “wager” on the horse I really wanted! Of course my slip of paper lost, while my real horse won.

If we’re planning ahead, anyone interested in a Tour de France pool? 21 days of cycling fever folks!

4:27 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Nabisco: Them’s the breaks!

4:34 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

We have foot races on May 3 at my home Pueblo for Santa Cruz Day. No wagering permitted, however.

4:46 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@nojo: That “Loser: Tommcatt” sitting at the top of the site for a month (poor guy–good thing he had a cute puppeh at home to console him) is exactly the reason I will never participate in Stinque’s March Madness pool…or any others, for that matter.

4:49 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@flippin eck: Yes, but I set that up thinking I would be wearing the dunce cap. Tommcatt stole my glory.

5:19 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@nojo: @flippin eck:

That’s what happens when you fill out a bracket by closing your eyes and clicking randomly on the screen.

5:20 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@nojo:

This time, research.

5:24 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@nojo: I’m so traumatized from last year’s Derby (or was it two years ago) where they had to kill the horsey after the race that I don’t think I can watch this year’s.

5:53 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Tommmcatt the Wet Sprocket: A friend who was a stringer for The Daily Racing Form said they basically made all their reports up from all the shit ass tracks out in New Mexico and other such places.

6:26 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@redmanlaw:

See, that same kind of spirit infuses all of my attempts with involvement in sport.

6:57 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@mellbell and @rptrcub: Re: drinks with maple syrup. I have to share with you one of my favorite websites, created by a friend’s husband….
CocktailDB. Type in any ingredient and a multitude of recipes come out. It offered me 16 different recipes that use maple syrup, but I think these are the top two contenders:

“The Old Vermont”
Shake in iced cocktail shaker & strain
1 1/2 oz gin (4.5 cl, 3/8 gills)
1/2 oz maple syrup (1.5 cl, 1/8 gills)
1/4 oz fresh lemon juice (6 dashes, 1/16 gills)
1/4 oz orange juice (6 dashes, 1/16 gills)
1 dash Angostura bitters
Serve in a cocktail glass (4.5 oz)

or

“The Wedding Night Cocktail”
Shake in iced cocktail shaker & strain
1 3/4 oz light rum (5 cl, 7/16 gills)
1/2 oz maple syrup (1.5 cl, 1/8 gills)
1/4 oz fresh lime juice (6 dashes, 1/16 gills)
(Optional – more lime juice & less maple syrup)
Serve in a cocktail glass (4.5 oz)

7:07 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Send a thank you to the leaders of the Vermont legislature here. Don’t want them to only hear from the fundies.

8:20 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

@Serolf Divad:

For future reference, I prefer my ignorance and arrogance to have a eucalyptus scent.

“we bathe in a sea of ignorance and arrogance”

9:17 pm • Tuesday • April 7, 2009

Best. Graphic. EVAR. I knew that we had a Homofascist Army, but an air force, too?

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