Monday, May 12, 2008

Maureen Dowd is Like Playing Mad Libs with Someone Who Has Tourette's (Actually Strike That, That Sounds Pretty Awesome) (JM)

Is She a Trojan Rabbit?

The thing about Maureen’s titles is that they rarely make any more sense after reading the column than they do at the beginning. Let’s go ahead and see if this holds true this week. (SPOILER ALERT: It does.)



Now Barack Obama faces a true dilemma: how best to punish Hillary Clinton.

Yes, this really should be his focus. I say a lifetime of labor in the gulag for trying to win an election.

After 15 months of fighting her off, as she veered wildly from bully to victim, as she brandished any ice pick at hand, whether racial, sexual, mathematical or marital (in the form of her Vesuvian husband), Obama must decide the most efficacious means of doing to Hillary what she has been trying to do to him: putting her in her place.

This is definitely the recipe for reunifying the party, concentrating on putting Hillary in her place. I think the mere fact that she lost has put her in her place. By the way, how misogynistic would this be if written by anyone other than a woman. Hell, screw it, still weird and misogynistic as Dowd usually is. Also “vesuvian”? There are like a billion better adjectives for Bill and if you’re trying to impress us with your vocabulary, well it’s a bit too late for that I am afraid.

Her last resort is to continue to press the “Psssst — he’s a black man” tactic. She insisted to USAToday, after the North Carolina and Indiana slide, that she has a broader base, citing an Associated Press article “that found how Senator Obama’s support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me.”

This is a totally legitimate criticism and a major concern for the general election. Race is a touchy issue, but demographic bases is a legitimate discussion and should not be construed as mere race baiting.

So how does Obama repay Hillary for running a campaign designed both to unman him and brand him as an unelectable black? Is the most ingenious way to turn the screw by not choosing her as his running mate, or by choosing her?

How about making a decision on what’s best for the party. The answer is probably she would not be an ideal running mate, but then again she does very much excite her base. Someone who appeals to that base is necessary.

It is, verily, a sticky wicket.

You are, verily, a Lemony Snicket.

One top Hillary supporter who is black warns that, despite the giddy dreams of some punch-drunk Democrats, a fusion ticket could backfire because “Americans can’t handle too much change at once.”

I actually think this analysis is profoundly stupid. I suspect that people who are deterred by either gender or race are likely to be deterred one way or another. I doubt there is someone out there who is thinking, “I am okay with either a black man or a woman as president, but both? That’s just too much change for me!” This is both inane and offensive. The fact is that it is time to just get over this shit and act like this is not a big deal, because when we can treat this like it’s no big deal, well that’s the real victory.

But should Obama ignore that caution and appease Hillary fans by putting her on the ticket?

As president, he could announce that, because Dick Cheney abused the powers of his office so grievously, taking the title “Vice” literally, he intends to shrink the vice presidency back to its “bucket of warm spit” Constitutional prerogatives — presiding over the Senate and taking over if the president goes under anesthesia.

See how that might not appease Hillary fans. Why do you assume punishment is the ultimate goal here. That seems like a pretty stupid goal. Also Obama knows Hillary is a pretty good resource, if he makes her VP it will be with a fairly significant portfolio, probably health care. Anything less would be a debacle.

He might also neglect to give Bill (whose acronym would be SLOTUS, Second Lad of the United States) full White House access.

Another awesome plan, a bitter, pissed off former POTUS running around the world. Maureen, I want you to be in charge of all my life’s decisions from now on.

Aside from the delight Bill would get from living at the Naval Observatory and having a huge telescope to window-peep with, there wouldn’t be much joy in Hillaryland.

Jokes, I like them.

The lady-in-waiting would be surrounded by Obama disciples who disdained her for fighting dirty. And she would be miserable holding up the train of the young prince who usurped her dream, derailing the post-nup she had with Bill to trade places.

The first part of this paragraph is true. I am not sure what a post-nup is, but yes I buy that it would be uncomfortable for her.

As de facto veep for Bill, she had enough leverage over him, due to his shenanigans, to co-opt huge chunks of policy and personnel decisions.

Does Maureen just hate being female. Does she really believe that the only reason Hillary had any policy influence was because she had dirt on Bill. This is just preposterous. Not only is it offensive to her, it is also offense to the millions of people who are certain Hillary would be an incredibly competent world leader.

But in a return engagement with Obama at the top, could she really wake up every day in the back seat and wish him well, or would she just be plotting? (Fourteen vice presidents have ascended, after all.) Wouldn’t she be, in Monty Python parlance, the Trojan Rabbit behind the gates?

See, look, her title came back. It still makes no sense, just another silly pop culture reference to cover up for a weak, weak argument. Plotting what?! If she’s VP her only goal would be a successful Obama administration. She cannot run until he leaves office, so either way, if he wins it’s another eight years, so they better be good ones. If she’s his VP candidate and they lose that damages her terminally. If she really wants to plot, it wouldn’t be from instead the White House.

On a positive note, maybe she could bring back all that stuff she pilfered on her way out.

Umm… did Dowd just accuse Hillary of being a klepto?

Obama’s other option, laid out by Teddy Kennedy on Friday, is to go with someone who wouldn’t be a big dark cloud over his sunshiny new politics.

Teddy told Bloomberg’s Al Hunt that Obama should choose a partner “in tune with his appeal for the nobler aspirations of the American people.”

Yeah, this was a obnoxious comment, especially given that Hillary is in tune with almost exactly fifty percent of Democratic voters.

That would be smart for another reason: Hillary has a strange, unnerving effect on Obama, and whenever he is around her, he’s unable to do his best. Probably, it’s because she’s furious, always shaking his hand off her arm, ignoring him, giving him the evil eye and emasculating him, and the Golden One is not used to such rough treatment.

Hillary as enemy and Hillary as teammate are two very different things. But essentially you’re correct, if Obama is uncomfortable with her, he shouldn’t choose her. However, it’s difficult to imaging that she is like some sort of competence sucking Dementor.

In the last few days, as Hillary has deflated and Obama and the Democrats have dashed for daylight, he has been more like his old self, flashing his all-is-right-with-the-world smile on the cover of Time, joshing and charming Democrats and Republicans as he wooed superdelegates on the House floor, taking on James Carville for insulting his manhood.

“James Carville is well known for spouting off his mouth without always knowing what he’s talking about,” he told Terry Moran on “Nightline.”

James Carville will survive, this is irrelevant to the question at hand.

Obama will never be at his best around Hillary; she drains him of his magical powers. She’s Jane Jinx to him. It’s a similar syndrome to the one Katharine Hepburn’s star athlete and her supercilious fiancé have in “Pat and Mike.”

What a stupid assertion structured merely to lead in to a pop culture reference. Most people use the pop culture references to emphasize their point. Not Maureen, she uses her point to emphasize her pop culture references. She’s kind of like Rose Nyland, with stories from St. Olaf, but way less charming and way more evil.

The fiancé is always belittling Hepburn, so whenever he’s in the stands, her tennis and golf go kerflooey. Finally, her manager, played by Spencer Tracy, asks the fiancé to stay away from big matches, explaining, “You are the wrong jockey for this chick.”

“You know, except when you’re around, we got a very valuable piece of property here,” he says, later adding, “When you’re around, she’s no good, she’s dead, see?”

Movie quotations are not persuasive evidence. Thus far you have made a blanket assertion about Obama being unable to perform when Hillary is around and supported it be quoting a Tracy and Hepburn movie.

“Oh, god, he’s Hepburn.” See I can randomly quote television shows too, and to one up Maureen I am not even giving you any context or relevance at all.

The best way Obama can punish Hillary is to reward himself. He’s no good around her, see?

The best way Obama can be president is not to think like a twelve year-old girl snipping at a lunch table. Just how bad was your childhood Maureen? Really miserable I bet, you are a pretty unlikable person.

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