The mob turned me into a NEWT! And I didn’t get better!

This is something new to me: a satirical video op-ed — in the Gray Lady, no less!

mobI loved it. It was accompanied by some text. Having read it, and followed the links, I’ve concluded that as just as these mobs have always been with us, they’re probably not going away any time soon — mainly because the current culprits are immune to irony.

Even President Obama’s gentle attempt to speak to them as a grownup should got the mob howling at him. As the subhed of one piece taking exception to his plea says, “Old, powerful people often seem to be more upset by online criticism than they are by injustice.”

Speaking of Barack Obama. Yeah.

I’m guessing that if cancel culturists see this video, when a character says, “Our anger makes us qualified,” or “I‘m a peasant, and I’m offended,” they don’t get the joke. In fact, they may even get… offended.

Anyway, to add to the fun, here’s the original:

148 thoughts on “The mob turned me into a NEWT! And I didn’t get better!

  1. Doug Ross

    I guess you don’t see the irony/hypocrisy of Obama — the hope and change guy – who is now for “steady as she goes”. Guess it helps when your net worth increases 30-fold just by being President for 8 years. Much easier to ruminate on the silly concerns of the little people from your $15 million Martha’s Vineyard summer house or your $8 million home in D.C. When he gets $400K for a one hour speech, he knows he better give some excellent advice to those who can’t afford to buy food.

    It’s crazy how Democrats only hate people who get rich building up businesses that employ thousands of people but idolize people like Obama and the Clintons who create NOTHING and get rich off it. If you want a President of the people, vote for someone who isn’t using the position to become a millionaire (or is one already like Elizabeth Warren).

    Reply
    1. David T

      I guess Joe Biden can forget about all those million dollar homes now that he’s declared marijuana a gateway drug. I wonder how many votes that’ll cost him in the primary.

      Reply
      1. Doug Ross

        Joe’s gateway drugs are Botox and Metamucil. His views on pot are going to make him look even more like a relic of bygone days.

        His campaign is like a balloon with a small leak in it.. every day, a little more air is let out. He’s drifting down in Iowa and NH to where 4th place is more likely than 2nd.

        Reply
        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          And if that’s the case, there’s no hope, Captain Bringdown.

          You know what is a relic of bygone days? Marijuana.

          It is SO retro, so been-there-done-that, to hear kids who were born more than a generation after the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers go on and on about such a passe, everyday drug — assuming this is 1971 or something…

          Reply
            1. Norm Ivey

              I had to ask Google who they are. I recognized them, but I did not know the name of the comic. Thanks for the memories.

              Reply
              1. Bob Amundson

                And “Fritz the Cat.” I am a child of the late 60’s – early 70’s. My loss of brain cells is due to aging, not due to illegal substances, which OF COURSE I NEVER USED!

                Reply
          1. Doug Ross

            Joe should ask his buddy Barack whether pot was a gateway drug to the presidency…

            Seems like crack is also the gateway drug to getting a high paying job as a “consultant” for a Ukrainian corporation.

            As for being a downer on Joe, all I’ll ask you to do is tell me what the highlight of his campaign has been so far? What have you seen that indicates he is on the rise? His BEST polling numbers sho 2/3 of Democrats think someone else is better. What will change that perception? Being anti pot?

            Reply
            1. Brad Warthen Post author

              For Joe, the “highlight of his campaign” is any time he gets to interact with a voter. Or with a bunch of voters…

              VOTER

              BUNCH OF GUYS

              SELFIE

              In retrospect, I kind of wonder how Joe got through the day every day before there were selfies.

              I guess he had to make up for them with extra handshakes and hugs…

              Reply
            2. Brad Warthen Post author

              Oh, and I don’t need him to be on the rise. I just need him to hang on and outlast the rest.

              Which is a lot to ask, but I know he’ll do his best.

              Remember, I’m not asking Joe to change the world or do anything remarkable at all. I just want him to be president, and return NORMAL.

              What happens after that, we can take one step at a time.

              I just want my country back. I want to be able to look at the White House without feeling deeply ashamed.

              Far as I’m concerned, as soon as he’s in office, all he needs to do is fill his administration with normal, rational, decent human beings who know what they are doing in their respective jobs, and then he can take long naps every day, like Reagan.

              Not that he would, but that would be fine by me…

              Reply
              1. Norm Ivey

                I just want my country back.

                I wish you hadn’t said that.

                Brad, I agree with maybe 60-70% of your views, and I respect your reasoned expression of the rest, but this grates. It’s OUR country. There’s no one to take it back from. There is only we, the people.

                Reply
              2. Mr. Smith

                Problem is, at this time Joe shows no more sign of bringing together the so-called “Obama coalition” than do any of the other candidates. That may be a product of the crowded field. But it may be a product of his own shortcomings. Biden is not automatically the inheritor of that coalition simply by virtue of being part of the former administration.

                Reply
                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Yeah, of course that’s not why I support him. I was for him before 2008.

                  But I think it’s a reason why he appeals to a lot of people, especially here in SC…

                  I don’t want Joe to restore the Obama administration. I want him to restore the presidency, as it was from Washington through Obama…

          2. JesseS

            Yes, I remember my dad’s comic collection along with Fat Freddy’s Cat.

            Pot is a a passe, but not as nearly as passe as sending someone to jail over it, let alone trotting out the gateway drug argument. That’s passe.

            Reply
            1. Brad Warthen Post author

              And in fact, as I said earlier, you could take the gateway drug argument and use it to justify decriminalization:

              You could also say beer is a gateway drug, especially if you start drinking when you’re underage. Because there are two dynamics at work — the physical effects, but also the tendency to be willing to break rules.

              Once you’ve drunk a lot of beer when you’re 16 and haven’t gotten caught, the natural adolescent tendency toward legal as well as physical risk-taking gets another little push as you become more convinced of your invulnerability.

              What I’m saying here, of course, could be used as an argument for decriminalizing cannabis. If it’s not illegal, then using it is somewhat less likely to lower your inhibitions about breaking the law with other drugs.

              You might smoke dope, seeing it as a harmless habit, but hold yourself back from experimenting with illegal drugs.

              So I can see that argument as reasonable.

              But, as I concluded, it is absolutely NOT BS to speak of it as a gateway drug. It may not be fashionable, but it’s not bull. It’s a reasonable way of looking at reality…

              Reply
    2. Brad Warthen Post author

      No, I don’t see any irony or hypocrisy whatsoever in a man who has always dealt with other people in a civil, respectful, thoughtful dignified manner asking people to stop participating in angry, irrational mobs.

      And I can’t imagine how anyone would.

      Not one thing you just said bears in any way upon the validity of what President Obama had to say…

      Reply
      1. Doug Ross

        Yeah, look what he accomplished with his too-cool-for-school demeanor. Nada. Promised hope and change and delivered more of the same (plus a mediocre insurance program).

        People who want single payer don’t want to hear Obama say “stay cool, my people”.

        Reply
  2. bud

    Cancel culture is mostly a myth conjured up by moderates who oppose liberal ideas. We live in a free society where free speech is a right. Moderates who don’t like are free to suggest their own ideas. And if they are chastised for those ideas so be it. That’s what our country is about. The blue dog scolds need to get over themselves. They don’t have exclusive rights to expression of opinion.

    Reply
    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Oh, come on. Of course “free speech is a right.”

      So speak freely. And allow other people to speak freely, without you and a bunch of others forming a mob to try to destroy their lives for saying it.

      Surely you can see the difference.

      Where there are mobs bent on tearing apart anyone who displeases, there is no freedom…

      Reply
      1. bud

        Oh come on yourself. No one is forming a “mob”. That’s just hyperbole. What this is really about is you don’t like the form liberals free speech is taking. So you call it a mob. If anyone is forming a mob it’s the moderates trying to stifle freedom of speech. Moderates have been on the wrong side of history lately like with DOMA, marijuana laws and don’t ask don’t tell. So rather than scolding liberals why not listen to what they have say?

        Reply
  3. Brad Warthen Post author

    As I suggested above, going after cancel culture with humor is probably doomed to failure. The people who need to hear the message don’t speak that language.

    Which reminds me of my second-favorite lightbulb joke, which I’m sure I’ve mentioned here before:

    Q: How many feminists does it take to change a light bulb?
    A: THAT’S NOT FUNNY!

    Reply
    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      And what is my FAVORITE light bulb joke?

      I’m glad you asked:

      How many Charlestonians does it take to change a light bulb?

      Ten. One to change the bulb, and the other nine to sit around talking about how grand the OLD bulb was…

      Reply
      1. Bryan Caskey

        I thought the Charleston version was:

        How many Charlestonians does it take to change a light a light bulb?

        One. He holds the light bulb still and waits for the world to revolve around him.

        Reply
  4. Brad Warthen Post author

    Being an old editorial-page editor, I’d love to know how this item came into being.

    Did someone on the editorial board say, “This would be a fun way to comment on this. Let’s find someone who is game to do it.”

    Or did the creators of the video, Nick Boshier and Jazz Twemlow, create it and pitch it to the editors?

    This kind of thing is right up my alley. It’s why I dove into blogging with such enthusiasm, because it allowed me to play with video and audio and images on my own at a time when everybody else was still focused on putting out the dead-tree version. (It was a venue without limits — or rather, one in which I was only limited by time, since I still had the more-than-full-time job of doing all the old stuff.)

    Beyond that, I made a little use of multimedia, such as doing little video monologues for the website when we were unrolling a major endorsement or something. But I didn’t get the chance to take it nearly as far as I would have liked. Certainly not this far, which I think is great fun.

    I’m not jealous of people who still have to crank out all that content on a never-ending deadline. But I do envy them the wider technological environment in which they operate…

    Reply
    1. bud

      With this ridiculous gateway drug BS, it’s time for the Democrats to look elsewhere for an alternative to Joe Biden. Folks in Iowa seem to be discovering just what a deeply flawed candidate the former VP is. Mayor Pete could be the guy if he can somehow break through with Africa American voters.

      Reply
      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        There’s nothing ridiculous about cannabis being a gateway drug. I know from tragic family experience how it can be the first step toward deadly consequences.

        Of course, Doug and Bud will scoff because I can’t do a mathematical proof of a relationship. But we intuitive types have no problem with it.

        It simply makes sense. People tend to take smaller risks before they decide to take larger ones. Cannabis is relatively safer than heroin or cocaine or synthetic opioids; you try it and you don’t get caught and you decide you might take larger chances for possibly greater psychoactive rewards — if you have the right kind of addictive personality.

        You could also say beer is a gateway drug, especially if you start drinking when you’re underage. Because there are two dynamics at work — the physical effects, but also the tendency to be willing to break rules.

        Once you’ve drunk a lot of beer when you’re 16 and haven’t gotten caught, the natural adolescent tendency toward legal as well as physical risk-taking gets another little push as you become more convinced of your invulnerability.

        What I’m saying here, of course, could be used as an argument for decriminalizing cannabis. If it’s not illegal, then using it is somewhat less likely to lower your inhibitions about breaking the law with other drugs.

        You might smoke dope, seeing it as a harmless habit, but hold yourself back from experimenting with illegal drugs.

        So I can see that argument as reasonable.

        But it is absolutely NOT BS to speak of it as a gateway drug. It may not be fashionable, but it’s not bull. It’s a reasonable way of looking at reality…

        Reply
        1. David T

          You sound like California. Beer is a gateway drug to marijuana. What’s the gateway to beer? Soda, and what’s the gateway to soda, apple juice, and the gateway to apple juice is breast milk. My God!!! Our mothers are trying to kill us all!!!

          Reply
          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            Yeah, that argument is pretty old and moldy. You forgot to say chewing gum. Usually people say chewing gum.

            If you can’t see how it’s different after what I just said, I can’t explain it to you.

            Reply
              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                Then it’s not old and moldy to you.

                But I’ve been hearing it since the 60s.

                Normal people don’t go around arguing about stuff like this, I guess. I’ve spent decades arguing public policy, so I’m probably not as tolerant as I should be to arguments I’ve heard before…

                Reply
        2. Doug Ross

          “Of course, Doug and Bud will scoff because I can’t do a mathematical proof of a relationship. But we intuitive types have no problem with it.”

          That wasn’t intuitive, it was anecdotal. Do you realize how many people are actively, legally or not, using marijuana now without any foray into harder drug? Millions… . People who move onto harder drugs do so for reasons unrelated to where they started. There are basic psychological reasons why people abuse drugs. The drugs aren’t the problem, the people are.

          This falls into the “damn the statistics, full speed ahead” style you frequently settle on to prevent you from modifying your opinion.

          Reply
          1. Doug Ross

            Let’s start with basic fundamental statements that Joe Biden SHOULD support:

            No one should ever be arrested or fined simply for ingesting, smoking, or using a plant based product.

            All drug use offenses should be expunged from everyone’s records.

            No cop should ever be allowed to search a car because they smell marijuana.

            Reply
            1. bud

              “Of course, Doug and Bud will scoff because I can’t do a mathematical proof of a relationship. But we intuitive types have no problem with it.”
              -Brad

              I scoff because this is so scoffable. I agree with Doug it’s high :) time marijuana is decriminalized at the federal level. Whatever else you want to say about pot it is clearly not particularly dangerous.

              Reply
            2. Brad Warthen Post author

              It would never occur to me to pick a candidate based on position on such a relatively minor issue. I seldom choose based on ANY issue, but certainly not on that.

              That said, I’m grateful that Doug voted for James last year based on that issue.

              It takes all kinds to make a world. Which is a GOOD thing…

              Reply
          2. David T

            I think we should ban Narcan use for all but true emergencies and first responders. Handing it out at free needle clinics is counter productive. When drug dealers realize they’re killing their customers they’ll dial back on what they add to the heroin.

            Reply
          3. Brad Warthen Post author

            No, it was intuitive.

            I didn’t base the statement on anecdotes; I based it on what one might reasonably expect to happen, based upon my understanding of humans and the way they think and behave.

            What statistics am I damning?

            Your assertions are irrelevant. We can stipulate that “Do you realize how many people are actively, legally or not, using marijuana now without any foray into harder drug? Millions…” without damaging my argument in the slightest.

            Ditto with “People who move onto harder drugs do so for reasons unrelated to where they started.” (I’m assuming you mean “a lot of people,” like with your other point. If you mean that NO people who move on to harder drugs for reasons related to where they start, well that’s just crazy.)

            Those points only work if this is a ones and zeroes thing. You know, if everybody does everything for the exact same reasons — as though humans are like lightbulbs that go on or off depending on whether a switch is in the on or off position. People aren’t like that. My position admits that fact; yours does not.

            What are we arguing about, anyway? You say, “There are basic psychological reasons why people abuse drugs.” I say, “if you have the right kind of addictive personality.” What’s the diff? The next thing you say, though, is where the libertarian approach breaks down: “The drugs aren’t the problem, the people are.”

            And my answer is, if you take away access to the drugs, the people with problem don’t have that problem. So yeah, it’s the drugs.

            This argument isn’t about the stupid dope. It’s about worldviews. You don’t want any government to be able to tell any person that they can’t do something. You’re a switch that’s always in the off position. The subject at hand is just a distraction from that main point.

            Whereas I have no problem in banning a substance that will be a stumbling block for 1 out of 10 people. The other nine don’t need the substance (we can have a medical cannabis argument separately; my remarks here bear on recreational), so I see no reason to grant them access at the expense of the 10th person.

            Paternalistic? You bet. I’ve been a father for most of my life, and that’s how I look at the world.

            Reply
            1. bud

              Whereas I have no problem in banning a substance that will be a stumbling block for 1 out of 10 people. The other nine don’t need the substance
              -Brad

              What an absurd, utterly un-American thing to say. What’s more it is not in any way persuasive because you just through random numbers out as though YOUR intuition matters to any other person. Well to be clear IT DOESN’T. Who is it for YOU to say someone doesn’t need this or any other safe substance. What’s next, banning coffee because the caffeine it contains could lead to strong amphetamines? Or do we ban beer because it could lead to folks sipping grain alcohol? Do we ban soccer because it could lead to dangerous sports like football or perhaps as in the Deerhunter people will resort to something more thrilling like Russian roulette?

              But to the main point why would we want to go backwards with a man like Biden who will throw away the baby with the bathwater? Sure we need to get rid of Trump. No question. But with Biden making these completely idiotic statements, one after the other, does it not occur to you that voters are going to stay home with an indifferent attitude? Put yourself into the mind of a liberal voters. We want to move forward. Many will just not vote for Biden is he’s the candidate. And it’s getting harder and harder for me to convince them to vote for Biden regardless of his many, many, many flaws.

              Reply
              1. Doug Ross

                What if the number you clearly made up is 1 out of 1000 instead of the very unlikely 1 out of 10?

                You completely ignore the fact that access to marijuana is not a problem whether it is illegal or not. Those who want it get it and can get it with no trouble at all. Same for any other drug. The fact that it is illegal only adds a tiny bit of risk to the equation for the consumer.

                Crack became pervasive because some people wanted it. Same with meth. Supply meets demand.

                It is a people problem… it’s why some people huff paint, drink Sterno, inhale from whipped cream aerosol cans. There are people who are pre-disposed to wanting to get high. Access to legal, controlled, marijuana would likely have the effect of REDUCING the number of other drug related deaths.

                You seem to be focused solely on the gateway drug aspect of this issue while discounting all the potential benefits. That isn’t very intuitive.

                Reply
                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  “What if the number you clearly made up is 1 out of 1000 instead of the very unlikely 1 out of 10?”

                  First of all, you say “you clearly made up” as though accusing me of trying to pass it off as something else. I did no such thing.

                  I suspect, though, that the 1 in 10 is closer than 1 in 1,000. But who knows?

                  I don’t have a number in mind that would mean I’d say, “Sure, let everybody get stoned even though it ruins X number of people’s lives.”

                  I just don’t. But I do know that no one NEEDS recreational cannabis. So banning it doesn’t bother me in the slightest.

                  As I said yesterday in a comment that crashed and I didn’t feel like retyping it…

                  This is not an issue that I care passionately about. I know that it matters a LOT to you (and again, I thank you for voting for James on the basis of it), but it’s just not on my radar screen in terms of being a make-or-break issue — especially not in an election for POTUS.

                  But this is another one of those issues that are not a priority to me, but is something you and Bud feel passionately about, so I end up in extended arguments with you about it, out of proportion to my own interest in it.

                  Like Blue Laws. I said something along the lines of, “Aw, Blue Laws aren’t so bad” once and y’all have been indignant about it ever since. You act as though I’m crusading to bring them back, which is about as far from being the case as you can get.

                  My problem is that I can’t keep my mouth shut when I think people are going overboard on something. I’ve always thought objections to the simple matter of taking a day off from commerce are WAY out of proportion. And occasionally, I can’t resist saying so.

                  Ditto with this. I thought Bud’s reaction to Biden’s innocuous comment was just out of all proportion, as though Joe were a heretic or something. So I spoke up.

                  Believing cannabis is a “gateway drug” is a perfectly reasonable thing to believe, whether you or I agree or not. It makes little sense to get bent out of shape and condemn someone for believing it…

                2. Brad Warthen Post author

                  “You seem to be focused solely on the gateway drug aspect of this issue…”

                  That’s because I was reacting to what Bud said about that. He said that was ridiculous. I was disagreeing…

                3. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Here’s something that’s closer to your 1,000-to-one scenario, and I have to say I’m torn about it.

                  I wonder whether it’s a proportional response to ban peanut-butter sandwiches from schools because of the extremely small number of kids who could go into anaphylaxis just by being in proximity to it.

                  And I say that as someone who has had an anaphylactic reaction and knows how awful that potentially life-threatening experience can be.

                  I say it someone with grandchildren with celiac disease so severe that one has been hospitalized with it, and has to eat from a kitchen that has NO gluten in it.

                  I fully sympathize. But I still wonder whether banning peanut butter is proportional. Of course, I can fully understand school officials not wanting to take chances.

                  There’s a different dynamic at work here than with the other issue. For most kids, peanut butter is nourishing and healthful, and sometimes the only thing a picky eater will eat, among the things you can conveniently send him or her to school with.

                  Contrast that with recreational marijuana, which doesn’t nourish anyone and which no one NEEDS. It makes a big difference…

                4. Doug Ross

                  Marijuana was illegal across the country until a few years ago. People who wanted it, got it. The vast majority of people who have tried it never moved on to harder drugs (including multiple Presidents).

                  How many more people do you think are sitting at home WAITING for it to be legalized before they try it and then become reefer madness victims?

                  How much do you know about the legal pot world these days? I have a close relative who works in a legal dispensary. It’s closer to a Whole Foods than a crack den. The varieties and potency (and purity) of the products is far superior and controllable in that environment. Edibles appear to be very popular with varying effects depending on the levels of THC.

                  Me, I’ve never even inhaled. I’m just staying true to my belief that the government has no right to decide what a person puts into their body. Now, if someone is under the influence of any intoxicant does something that affects another person, then the government has every right to step in and punish that person.

                  We don’t need people like Leon Lott acting high and mighty about a photo of Michael Phelps with a bong while at the same time giving a job to a real drug abuser like Randy Scott.

                5. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Yeah, I don’t think Randy Scott was hired for being a drug abuser. I think he was hired because he had worked for Leon before, and he was willing to take another chance on him…

                  If I remember correctly. It’s been a long, sad saga, so some of the details and the sequence of events may escape me.

                  About all I remember about the Phelps thing was that after it happened, Leon spoke to my Rotary and got THREE standing ovations

                6. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Oh, by the way, I once took Randy Scott to breakfast (or maybe lunch) at the Cap City Club, and (I think) encouraged him to join.

                  Does this make me a bad person?

                7. Brad Warthen Post author

                  By the way, Doug explains the difference between us pretty much the way I do:

                  Me, I’ve never even inhaled. I’m just staying true to my belief that the government has no right to decide what a person puts into their body. Now, if someone is under the influence of any intoxicant does something that affects another person, then the government has every right to step in and punish that person…

                  Only I would finish the thought of that last sentence and add “and every responsibility to take steps to prevent it from happening with other people.”

                  And we can quibble over the details about how to go about that.

                  But the real difference is, I see that as a legitimate function of government, and Doug does not. It’s not really about dope…

                8. Brad Warthen Post author

                  By the way, I call it dope because that’s what we settled on in the 70s after several years in the 60s of calling it all sorts of other names, many of them rather cutesie.

                  “Pot” was a term that very rapidly came to be known as the word that unhip people used trying to sound like they were in the know. It was like “groovy” in that regard. How square was it? They even made “pot” jokes on “The Beverly Hillbillies.” (Granny was going to “smoke some crawdads,” but first she needed to “get a little pot,” she told the officers before her arrest.)

                  Then there was “grass” and “Mary Jane” and “ganja” and “herb,” and “loco weed” and the one that kids today seem to think is hip and with it, plain “weed.”

                  Then of course there was the less cute “shit.”

                  But in the 70s we just went with the plain, blunt and ironic (because it seemed to be a pejorative that detractors might use) “dope.”

                  I felt that we had finally arrived at a term that worked, one that was cool enough without seeming to TRY to sound cool, and haven’t seen a need to change since then…. It works if you thing it’s cool, and also if you don’t…

                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  In fact, I’ll point out that my formula that no one NEEDS recreational marijuana does NOT apply with regard to coffee.

                  If we banned coffee today, and I mean EFFECTIVELY banned it so that there was none available tomorrow, we’d probably be faced with quite a few traffic fatalities tomorrow…

                2. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Which reminds me… when is Starbucks going to create a second line for those of us who want COFFEE, and want it NOW, not after some twit has selected several snacks that have to be warmed in the microwave, AFTER spending five minutes thinking out loud about which sweet flavorings he wants injected into his dairy-bar drink?

                  I’ve seen it done at ONE Starbucks — at White Station and Poplar in Memphis, just a hundred yards or so from the Corky’s I recommended to you some time back.

                  I wonder if they still do that. I’ll be in Memphis next week, so I’ll check it out…

                3. David T

                  “Which reminds me… when is Starbucks going to create a second line for those of us who want COFFEE, and want it NOW”

                  Now I believe you when you say you don’t go to Chik-fil-A. The one at USC has two rows and is about a 30-40 minute wait from 11:00 – 2:00. The new one in Lexington has a drive thru that is wrapped around the building for most of the day.

                  Fun Fact: I’ve never been in a Starbucks.

            2. Bill

              “And my answer is, if you take away access to the drugs, the people with problem don’t have that problem. So yeah, it’s the drugs.”
              Brad

              No.It is the opposite.GIVE people access and THEN they don’t have the problem.Addiction is the problem,whether it’s sex ,drugs or religion…

              Reply
              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                You remind me of a psychology professor I had in college. She said drug addiction wasn’t a problem, it was crime resulting from not being able to afford the addiction. She pointed to Sly Stone as a high-functioning addict — because, she said, he could afford the drugs.

                Yeah, well — tell that to Jimi Hendrix. Drugs are not simply an economic issue.

                That same instructor told us flatly that cocaine was not addictive. I believed that for years. (In her defense, I think she was using the term “addictive” in a very narrow, technical sense that would work in a medical textbook — as in, it’s not addictive in the SAME WAY as heroin — but it was still a hell of a thing to tell a bunch of kids.)

                Reply
                1. David T

                  I had a college professor who admitted to smoking pot on a daily basis. He said the only problem he’s ever had with pot is finding it. I bombed a midterm in his class one semester and dropped his class before talking to him. He saw me one day and asked me why I dropped his class, he said all I had to do was show up and he’d have given me a B in the class.

  5. Barry

    It is a bit odd today to watch conservatives angry at Chick Fil A for narrowing the groups they give money to and cutting out any groups that opposed gay marriage. (I wasn’t for gay marrriage myself btw)

    I’ve now heard about a dozen conservatives on right wing talk radio say they aren’t going to chick Fil a anymore (no way they can stay away)

    I guess cancel culture works both ways,

    My stance remains as it always was- if I like the product, I’ll buy it. If I don’t, I won’t. I don’t care about the politics of a company.

    Reply
    1. bud

      If a chic fil a boycott keeps the line down I’m all for it. But so far, given the looooong lines this effort has been an utter failure.

      Reply
        1. David T

          I’ll take your word for it. I’ll take my money to the Chik-fil-A which is clean, the service is fast and courtious. Plus I don’t have to worry about getting shot by customers or stabbed by employees at Chik-fil-A.

          Reply
    2. Brad Warthen Post author

      Me, neither.

      I’ve always boycotted Chick Fil A and I always will.

      I’m allergic to chicken, you see. And I don’t hold with any company that engages in that trade… :)

      Reply
  6. Harry Harris

    As an older guy, I’ve decided I should never trust a fart or a Republican politician. Great danger both ways. Either one can create a real mess while promising to be innocuous at worst and seeming so until unleashed.

    Reply
  7. bud

    I will (reluctantly) vote for Biden if he’s the Democratic nominee. However, I urge the true Biden believers to understand one very important fact. Biden absolutely MUST stop making these idiotic comments that only alienate liberal Democrats. This crazy gateway drug comment only hurts his general election cause. Folks like Brad are just blind to just how damaging this comment is. This is important because the moderates incorrectly assume liberals will fall in line behind Biden regardless of what he says or does. NO! That is just not the case. I’m trying to hold on to the left flank of the electorate but damn this makes it hard. The election is far too important to keep making these unforced errors.

    Reply
    1. Doug Ross

      Exactly. If Joe somehow makes it to the finish line, he’s not going to inspire the 20% of the Democrats who want Bernie. Joe isn’t going to drive turnout like Obama did. What make Joe MORE electable than Hillary was? Not being Trump is a claim everyone can make.

      Tonight’s debate will be another pivotal moment for Joe. He’s still lucky that with so many on the stage, his chance of talking long enough to say something dumb is decreased.

      Reply
      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        I don’t WANT anyone who inspires the Bernie Bros.

        It would be nice if they were mature enough to show up and help vote Trump out of office, but a candidate who will INSPIRE them will turn off a far larger group of people.

        And I’ve had enough with the game of “can we catch Joe in a gaffe” game. It’s ridiculous. He’s the most qualified candidate, period, and the presidency isn’t a reality show game of “trip up the president.”

        Would it be great if someone were in his 50s instead of 70s? But this is what we’ve got, and there’s no one with that combination of traits running. There’s just Joe, and a bunch of wannabes.

        Everything else is noise….

        Reply
        1. David T

          What I’m asking myself at the moment is whether or not the Democrat voter reaction will be the same or worse when Trump is re-elected. Will we again witness the total meltdown of screaming, hysterical crying and actions that area typically associated with a 2 year old toddler? This blog will be the same old, “we gotta do whatever is necessary to get this man out of office”>

          Reply
        2. bud

          It would be nice if they were mature enough to show up and help vote Trump out of office
          -Brad

          First Bernie supporters are nihilists. Now they are immature. Insults aren’t helpful. You need to just acknowledge that Biden says really stupid stuff. He sniffs girls hair. He has a big issue with his son in the whole Ukraine debacle. Then there’s the Iraq vote, the Clarence Thomas hearings. And on and on. Plus he’s old as dirt. People that see these things aren’t immature they are instead pragmatists who have legitimate issues with this man. Other than Trump and perhaps W he’s the most cringe worthy candidate for POTUS I’ve seen in my lifetime. So rather than insulting those of us who recognize these shortcomings why not support a more reasonable candidate? Or at least not be so dismissive of these concerns. My intuition tells me that would be the mature thing to do.

          Reply
          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            I’ll stop being dismissive of those concerns when I can afford to be — which is to say, when there’s another candidate as qualified as Joe who I believe can win the general election.

            Until then, the objections to Joe seem pretty thin to me. He sniffs girls’ hair? Let’s focus on someone who actually assaults women and brags about it, and concentrate on getting him out of office.

            And you don’t think nihilists can be immature?

            Reply
            1. Doug Ross

              45 minutes into the debate and the general consensus is that Joe had stumbled badly repeatedly.. it’s reaching embarrassing levels. Rambling, stuttering, going of on tangents. And remember this is the best he will be in the next five years.

              Reply
                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Now see, THAT was more of a flub — not the African-American member of the Senate thing, which was nothing. Just unfortunate. He should make a note to avoid “punch” in the future, and just say “fight” five times every minute like Elizabeth Warren.

                  Nobody except me seems to give her a hard time for that…

        3. Mr. Smith

          “Everything else” is the democratic process.

          And: those who sneer at inspiration have grown too old in spirit to be of much use.

          Reply
  8. bud

    OMG! Biden just committed the single most spectacular gaffe in American history! This man is not right. Anyone that can’t see that is living in LaLa land. He just said he had the endorsement of the ONLY black woman ever elected to the United States senate! With Kamala Harris standing 5 feet away! How do you say such an incredibly stupid thing? Of course the Biden sycophants like Brad will say something like “that’s just Joe”. We should just ignore his gaffes because he has all this experience. NO. That doesn’t cut it. The man’s not right. I guess Tulsi Gabbard should be thankful for that moment since it overshadowed her horrendous performance. She actually accused Mayor Pete of suggesting a military invasion of Mexico. What a night. Anyway, for what it’s worth here are my rankings:

    1. Corey Booker – Very good night for the senator from NJ. Not sure why he’s polling so poorly.
    2. Amy Klobuchar – Steady night. She deserves another look.
    3. Pete Buttigieg – Another good night for Mayor Pete. Really good exchange with Gabbard.
    4. Kamala Harris – Solid performance.
    5. Andrew Yang – I like this guy but is he presidential timber? He’d make a great congressman.
    6. Tom Steyer – Nothing terrible but he really doesn’t seem convincing.
    7. Elizabeth Warren – She is just not persuading me on her big ideas. Perhaps she should dial it back just a tad.
    8. Bernie Sanders – Typical Bernie performance. I’ve seen this so many times it just doesn’t resonate any more.
    9. Joe Biden – The former VP was probably 6th or 7th until the end when he had his meltdown moment.
    10. Tulsi Gabbard – Can we finally see the end of this terrible excuse for a presidential candidate? Just a dreadful night.

    Reply
    1. Doug Ross

      Tulsi was fantastic. My favorite politician of my voting life. She crushed Harris who looked like a drunken Aunt at Thanksgiving and held her own with Pete.

      Biden was somehow worse than all house other debates combined.

      Reply
      1. Doug Ross

        Klobuchar was shaking so badly throughout the night it was distracting. She has zero personality.

        I would vote for Gabbard, Pete, Booker, or Bernie. No one else.

        Reply
        1. Doug Ross

          Boston Globe assessment of Biden’s debate performance:

          Former vice president Joe Biden

          Grade: D

          Biden was the Admiral Stockdale of this debate: who is he and what is he doing here?

          Who he is, of course, is the national Democratic frontrunner and the former vice president. But he ended up being a total non-factor and did nothing to stop the bleeding on his early state poll numbers or his campaign cash.

          Biden constantly makes the argument he is the best Democrat to be on the debate stage with Donald Trump. However, he has yet to have a good debate, and in every debate he said something that was just weird, or he had a bad moment.

          In Wednesday night’s debate, he was unsteady. He said he had the endorsement of the only African-American woman who was ever elected to the Senate. But there was a second African-American woman elected to the Senate — Kamala Harris — and she was standing on the stage with him.

          Then there was his repeated use of the word “punching” when speaking about domestic violence.

          Yikes.

          Reply
          1. Barry

            Representative Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii

            Grade: C-

            Harris offered a brutal take-down of Gabbard, painting her as a disloyal member of the Democratic Party. But in an odd way, the moment may have actually help cement whatever small niche Gabbard has among more conservative-minded Democratic voters. When Gabbard launched a late minute attack on Buttigieg, he successfully punched back with easy lines about her relationship with Syrian leader Bashar al Assad, and the fact she met with Donald Trump to possibly discuss a cabinet position.

            Some context: Gabbard’s best moment in the campaign was when Hillary Clinton launched an attack on her, suggesting that Russia was grooming her to be a third-party candidate. Gabbard responded forcefully against Clinton and as a result, she qualified for a spot on this stage. Looking into the poll numbers, she did best among conservative Democrats and men.

            Gabbard is hoping to get two more polls with four percent support to secure a spot on the December debate stage. She now may be well on her way. That’s enough for C- instead of a D-.

            Reply
            1. Doug Ross

              So, better than Joe, right?

              I’m fine with Tulsi not meeting the requirements of liberal Democrats. Her difference is why I support her. She has the intelligence and demeanor to be a very effective leader.

              Pelosi met with Assad in 2007. Obama sent one of his foreign policy advisors to meet with Assad in 2008. Seriously, this is the extent of the criticism of Gabbard…. that’s the entire narrative that comes from spoon fed liberals.

              Reply
              1. Doug Ross

                Did you get your morning thrill with your post to try and “get” me? You really need to go to Ross-Haters Anonymous.

                The 12 Step program starts with not reading my comments and ends with coming out of the shadows to post under your own name. Best of luck!

                Reply
              2. Doug Ross

                “Obama, 2007: I’d be “willing to meet, without precondition, during the first year of [my] administration, in Washington or anywhere else, with the leaders of Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea, to bridge the gap that divides our countries.”

                Democrats, like Republicans, are hypocrites.

                Reply
              3. Barry

                Presidential candidate Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) declined Sunday to say whether Syrian President Bashar Assad is a war criminal, and did not answer whether she would trust her own intelligence community if elected commander in chief.

                Reply
        2. David T

          “Klobuchar was shaking so badly throughout the night it was distracting.”

          Well that’s not exactly a positive trait for the leader of the free world. I wonder if she’s related to Don Knotts.

          Reply
        3. Brad Warthen Post author

          OK, I’ve GOT to hear why Doug would support Bernie.

          It can’t just be because he voted against war with Iraq BOTH in 2002 AND 1991.

          Surely the policy positions that make you dislike Warren would also apply to Bernie…

          Reply
          1. Doug Ross

            Bernie is anti war. That’s the first thing for me. Second, he’s at least consistent in his views and always has been. Warren is a phon y intellectual RICH person ($12 million net worth) pretending to be for the little guy. Her “plans” are a joke. Even Booker called her out on her ridiculous wealth tax.

            The whole native American incident speaks volumes about her character. She’s like Hillary in that rather than admit she did something wrong, she goes overboard trying to cover it up.

            Reply
            1. Brad Warthen Post author

              “Bernie is anti war.” I suppose you could say that. What I would say is, “Bernie doesn’t give a damn about international affairs.” Remember how upset his campaign was in 2015 when a debate was changed at the last minute to be about national security?

              He’s all about remaking the United States in his ideological image. It’s all he really thinks about. And the things he wants to do seem quite inconsistent with what you would want.

              Reply
              1. bud

                For those of you at home keeping score here’s a summary of Brad’s ad disparaging remarks about the distinguished senator from Vermont:

                1. He’s a nihilist
                2. He’s immature
                3. He wants to make the USA into his ideological image

                For someone who asks for civil discourse in the blog this is really pretty much at odds with that directive.

                Reply
              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                Oh, and I’m descended from someone whose sister was married to someone who was at another time married to Pocahontas…

                Which is to say, my many-great aunt was, like Pocahontas, married to John Rolfe.

                Still, I don’t think it’s enough to get me into the Identity Politics game (although it puts me ahead of Warren). I’ll try to deal with the disappointment…

                Reply
                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Actually, let me try…

                  How does Kamala Harris do it? Oh, yeah… “I was that little girl!”

                  So I would say, “I was that great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandson of Mary Pierce of Jamestown, whose sister married a guy who…”

                  Oh, never mind. Never fit on a bumper sticker…

    2. Brad Warthen Post author

      Oh, come on! Obviously, he meant the woman who was, when elected, “the only African American woman ever elected to the Senate.”

      Or maybe he doesn’t think of Harris as “African-American” in the same sense as Carol Moseley Braun, on account of her being the child of a Tamil woman and a Jamaican man — not the typical cultural touchstones shared by most people we call “African-American.” Maybe his mind categorizes her more as “second-generation immigrant,” or something like that.

      But I doubt it was that, and we certainly don’t need to get off on a tangent about who is “black enough.” I just think he meant what he said he meant. He didn’t SAY “first” the first time — he was mistaken on that point — but it seems clear to me that’s what he meant. And only people looking for excuses to jump all over him — which is pretty much everybody, it has seemed for the last few months — would make a big deal of it.

      And it in no way changes the point he was trying to make.

      Reply
      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        If anyone else had said that, Harris would have eagerly jumped in to correct him or her, but everyone would accept what he or she had meant.

        But since everyone has decided to pounce on any evidence that Joe is the “confused old guy,” they all have to have a cow about it…

        Reply
        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          By the way, I apologize for not putting up a post on the debate for y’all, but I was worn out last night, and didn’t watch to the end. I was so tired that, with the thing starting at 9, I almost didn’t watch any at all. And I didn’t even Tweet — even once.

          I’ve sort of got election fatigue along with impeachment fatigue. Just the same things over and over, with no one seeming to grow any wiser.

          I’d just like both processes to be over — with an ending that is good for the country. Then we can move on to stuff that doesn’t make me feel so weary…

          Reply
          1. Doug Ross

            It will be over for Joe in about three months. Might be best to select an alternative candidate. By the time he loses in Iowa and NH, he will be on a Hillary in 2008 trajectory.

            Last night’s debate performance was another step toward defeat. His only hope now would be an Obama endorsement… But since Joe’s from the black community, maybe it doesn’t matter.

            Reply
            1. Brad Warthen Post author

              “It will be over for Joe in about three months.” If that proves the case, the country will be in a dire strait — unless Bloomberg or Deval Patrick catches fire, which I’m sort of doubting.

              “By the time he loses in Iowa and NH, he will be on a Hillary in 2008 trajectory.” No. Hillary lost South Carolina. Joe is going to win South Carolina.

              In 2008, you had a lot of black voters in SC who were for Hillary because they didn’t think white people would vote for Obama. When Obama won in Iowa, they switched.

              Don’t expect them to similarly switch to Buttigieg when he wins in Iowa. They WANTED an excuse to switch to Obama. I don’t see such a dynamic at work this time…

              Reply
              1. Doug Ross

                Are you saying you would support Bloomberg or Patrick?

                I’d go for Bloomberg if he were 10 years younger. Patrick is just playing games for name recognition.

                Reply
        2. bud

          If anyone else had said that, Harris would have eagerly jumped in to correct him or her,
          -Brad

          Uh, that’s kinda the point. No one else did say something that stupid.

          Reply
      2. buf

        See what I mean. It was just a cringe inducing moment that should not happen. Biden’s age along with the rigors of the campaign are showing. He has no business being POTUS. Koolaid anyone?

        Reply
        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          Is that you, Bud?

          Anyway, I’ll say again what I’ve said before. NOTHING in the job description requires the kind of skills that help a person do well in these “debates.” Nothing. A president gets elected, does the job for four years, and won’t encounter anything like a campaign debate until he runs for re-election. And even then it will just be one-on-one, instead of one of these ridiculous crowd scenes with 10 people trying to trip you up and mock you for being the “out-of-touch old guy.”

          They have always been a bad way for anyone to make up his or her mind about a candidate.

          And if I’ve ever said otherwise, please show me because I’d like to see what I said.

          I’ve dreaded these debates from the beginning, for the simple fact that Joe was the frontrunner, and all a debate can do for a front-runner is damage him. Oh, he might come through unscathed for a debate or two (but not five, with more to come), but he will gain nothing. The whole thing is a minefield.

          And I knew from the beginning that the game everyone would play is, Can we catch Joe in a gaffe? And everybody wants to do so very much, and so any small slip on his part will be blown out of proportion.

          That’s happened, in debate after debate, starting with that Identity Politics play by Kamala Harris in the first one, which everyone thought was such a huge hit on poor ol’ hopeless Joe… and then, as the days went by, people started to realize that Joe hadn’t said anything wrong, and that Kamala essentially hadn’t said anything — she hadn’t made a point. Just like when she chortled at him in this last debate, when everyone perfectly understood what he had meant; he just didn’t say it quite right.

          All this stuff just makes me tired. I guess because I’m so old and out of it…

          Reply
          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            This brings me back to the decline of political parties.

            Y’all know I hold parties in low esteem, but even I can admit that once upon a time, they had a function, and that function is now just completely gone.

            They did the job of screening candidates, asking “Who sent you?” and if it was obvious they had just sent themselves (which is the case with most candidates these days), they got turned away. Oh, there were some primaries, but the decision of who the nominee will be was made by the party leaders at the convention.

            If parties still performed that function, we wouldn’t be dealing with Donald J. Trump. He wouldn’t have had a prayer of getting the nomination. And Hillary Clinton wouldn’t have been damaged by a guy who isn’t even a Democrat holding on so long.

            The Bernie Bros complained loudly that party bosses were in her corner. Well, they SHOULD have been. But they don’t have clout any more.

            And this time around, Joe would have been anointed right away as soon as he announced, and the party wouldn’t be encouraging all these debates, letting Joe rest up for the real fight, against Trump. They’d be building him up rather than tripping him up.

            And if there was anything like the Republican Party of yore, well, as I said, we wouldn’t have Trump. But if we did, they’d be working to groom a strong candidate to oppose him for the nomination…

            Reply
  9. bud

    The situation has gotten so bad with Joe Biden I’m hoping someone, perhaps Obama or Jill Biden, will conduct an intervention to persuade him to give up on his presidential run. Many people have noticed Trump slurring his words and rambling over the course of the last year or so. Biden hasn’t gotten to that point. Yet. But the signs are there that he is just not mentally up for the job as he nears his 80s. Absent this intervention Democrats must understand how important it is to elect a person with a clear head and a strong, youthful vigor. This election is too important to risk it on a man who is clearly not fit for the job. Heck, Doug and I disagree about much but it seems that both of us could support Corey Booker or Pete Buttigieg. Either would be vastly superior to a man who has served his country well but at the end of the day just needs to retire. Just ask Jimmy Carter.

    Reply
  10. Doug Ross

    Biden’s demise will happen naturally when the money starts drying up. He already had to backtrack on taking PAC money because people may like Joe but not enough to throw their money away.

    After Iowa, NH, Nevada, and South Carolina comes super Tuesday in early March. Which of these states are we sure Joe will win? And if he wins, which will he get more than 40%?

    Alabama primaries
    Arkansas primaries
    California primaries
    Colorado primaries
    Maine primaries
    Massachusetts primaries
    Minnesota primaries
    North Carolina primaries
    Oklahoma primaries
    Tennessee primaries
    Texas primaries
    Utah primaries
    Vermont primaries
    Virginia primaries

    Reply
    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      “Which of these states are we sure Joe will win?”

      Good Lord, I have no idea. How would I know that — about any candidate in any election year, especially at this point in the process? And I wouldn’t venture a guess. I don’t mind predicting what I think will happen in SC because there’s ample evidence for it, and fewer variables and unknowns — but that could change, too. And I won’t be embarrassed if that happens, because I have NEVER set myself up as a prognosticator. I’ll just be very, very sorry for the country — because if he doesn’t win here, it seems that would likely be it.

      Remember that at about this point in the process in 2007, everybody had written off John McCain. (Oops, I checked, and it was actually three or four months earlier than this.) He had started out as the frontrunner, and run out of steam. Joe is in way, WAY better shape than he was.

      But McCain came back, won South Carolina and won the nomination.

      And don’t come back with, “But he lost the election.” He was up against Barack Obama, probably the most charismatic figure of his generation, and the election was held several weeks after the economy had crashed. Any Republican was going to lose under those conditions…

      Reply
  11. Barry

    This explains a lot..

    “Gabbard isn’t exactly gaining traction in the polls, she does appear to have a loyal following. The vast majority of her support comes from male voters, according to FiveThirtyEight. She’s also more likely to attract support from Democratic primary voters who supported President Donald Trump in 2016.”

    Reply
        1. Doug Ross

          Like Sherry Lydon, the Trump appointed u.s. attorney for South Carolina, soon to be a federal judge?

          Define mysogynist.

          Reply
  12. Doug Ross

    You can’t make up how bad the Biden campaign is..I thought this was an Onion parody story:

    CEDAR RAPIDS — With 75 days until Iowa’s first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses, former Vice President Joe Biden is planning an eight-day, 18-county “No Malarkey” bus tour of the state that includes a stop in Cedar Rapids.

    It’s part of his effort to “work harder than anyone else to earn the support of Iowans,” according to Biden for President campaign manager Greg Schultz.

    ——–

    No Marlarkey??? What’s next, the Jumping Jehosafat Jamboree? Tippecanoe and Biden too? Dames and Broads for Biden?

    Reply
    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      I love it. It’s so Biden, and I love that about Biden.

      You have to understand that it’s not that he’s old and out of it. He would have done this when he was young, in the 70s, and if anything it would have seemed even more corny and old-fashioned then. We were very much about being cool in those days.

      I’m reminded of a bit of dialogue from my favorite Clint Eastwood movie:

      FRANK HORRIGAN: Stop this cockamamie shit.
      Come on, pal, I need you.
      Please.
      HIS PARTNER AL: Okay, Frank.
      FRANK: Cockamamie. That’s a word
      your generation hasn’t embraced yet.
      You ought to use it once in a while
      to keep it alive.
      AL: Cockamamie!
      FRANK: Yeah.
      AL: Oh, God!
      FRANK: Well, it made you laugh.
      AL: You kill me, Frank.

      Reply
      1. Doug Ross

        Of course you love it.. but I hate to tell you, people who weren’t adults in the 70s are going to laugh at it. Doubling down on appearing old and of of touch is not a winning strategy. But maybe I’m wrong.. Maybe there will be a groundswell of nostalgia for the good old days of 1972.

        He’s toast. Three time loser running for president is not a great Wikipedia bio.

        Reply
        1. Bill

          Maybe there will be a groundswell of nostalgia for the good old days of 1972…
          What you talking about ?

          Heading for the overload
          Splattered on the dirty road
          Kick me like you’ve kicked before
          I can’t even feel the pain no more

          Reply
        2. Brad Warthen Post author

          Being vice president of the United States is an awesome bio.

          And that’s the thing here, Doug, and a large part of why I’m for Joe. He didn’t have to do this. He didn’t have to run this gauntlet at his age. He’s led a good life — one with a lot of personal tragedy, but a good life — and has certainly served his country fully and well. There’s a man who could rest on his laurels and enjoy his grandchildren without a look back.

          But he sees the country’s need, and sees a field of people with thin resumes, and he’s willing to put himself out there once again, to suffer all the slings and arrows including the scorn of Doug.

          And for his willingness to do that, my respect knows no bounds…

          Reply
          1. Bryan Caskey

            “Being vice president of the United States is an awesome bio.”

            That reminds me of one of my favorite lines from the musical Hamilton. While Hamilton is Secretary of the Treasury, he’s working on getting his plan of the federal government assuming states’ debts through Congress. It’s a big job getting this legislation through a resistant Congress, so he’s really busy. However, his wife (Eliza) and her sister (Angelica) want him to take a break for the summer. In her argument to have Hamilton leave his work, Eliza makes the point that Vice President John Adams doesn’t work all summer:

            [ELIZA] Angelica, tell this man John Adams spends the summer with his family.

            [HAMILTON] Angelica, tell my wife John Adams doesn’t have a real job anyway.

            Reply
              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                Actually, that’s not exactly what Garner said.

                But anyway, it’s a pretty good way to end a long and distinguished career in the Senate.

                Of course, you don’t think that’s an accomplishment, either. I forget to whom I am speaking.

                Anyway, this is one of the most absurd conversations I’ve had in awhile. Think about it: If the only way you can not be a failure in life is to get elected POTUS, then all but 44 men in U.S. history have been failures…

                Reply
                1. Doug Ross

                  Your logic is baffling. Doesn’t reflect anything I said. Biden failed at running for President.. There’s a reasin for that. For a variety of reasons he has lacked the ability to inspire people across the country. His eight years as vice president resulted in what? Being a cheerleader for Obama? Every cabinet member did more than Joe.

                  Whatever he “accomplished” as a politician is no more substantial than what any number of people accomplish on a daily basis. I’ll take Bezos over Biden every day of the week.

        3. Brad Warthen Post author

          Oh, and I think you misunderstood me:

          “Maybe there will be a groundswell of nostalgia for the good old days of 1972.”

          Surely you don’t think “malarkey is a 1972 word.

          What I was saying was that in 1972, “malarkey” would have been seen as even LESS cool than today. Kids today probably haven’t even heard the word. To us, it was something corny that our parents or grandparents would have said — not our thing at all.

          Do you see what I’m saying?

          My point in bringing up those times was to say that it’s not that Joe is somehow out of touch today. I see him as a guy who was that corny even when he was young.

          But I like it, because it’s Joe, and there’s no pretense to Joe — no effort to be cool, thereby “>making the world a little colder.

          What Tom Vilsack said about Joe over the weekend is true: Joe is “a man who has the heart of a president.” Amen. And that’s what I’m looking for…

          Reply
            1. Doug Ross

              He also couldn’t remember the names of any of the four women he claimed he would consider for vice president.. not even Stacy Abrams who was all over the place at the debate last week.

              He’s not going to be any better a year from now.

              Reply

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