February 12, 2004


Christopher Hitchens on master condescender Howard Dean:

It's always interesting when people don't seem to feel shame or embarrassment -- and it's often not a very good sign -- so when Mr. Dean went on about his black roommates in college he was as toe-curlingly awful as when he condescended to those who display the Confederate flag. To be crass about both groups in a matter of weeks is quite something.

Howie sure achieved a lot during his brief time in the spotlight. Imagine alienating even the Hate Bush crowd:

There are, clear across the country, people who sincerely cannot stand the policies or the personality of the president. When they say "ABB" (Anybody but Bush) they say it as if they really mean it. But there are limits, and Mr. Dean managed to find them in only a few weeks of cocky, half-baked and spendthrift posturing. This is not a time when the United States can afford even to flirt with the idea of an insecure narcissist and vain windbag as president. It's good to know that many liberals and leftists recognize that fact and act upon it, even when it costs them something.

Posted by Tim Blair at February 12, 2004 11:37 PM

From the Hitchens article:

"Mr. Dean was simply appalling when he spun a yarn about a preteen girl supposedly impregnated by her father, and used it against parental notification of abortion."

I would have thought a better argument against parental notification of abortion would have been the behaviour of radical Muslim parents who have a tendency to "honour"-kill daughters who so much as flirt with members of the opposite sex, let alone get knocked up by them. But I guess that wouldn't have played so well with Dean's chosen demographic.

Posted by: Michael W at February 12, 2004 at 11:55 PM

One of our clever columnists in Canada has a better culprit for Dean's demise than himself. Are you ready? The right-wing media!

How did the media do it? By telling scary stories, mostly about Howard's ugly temper, as decision time drew near. "ALL THE RAGE" read Newsweek's cover. It ran selected quotes from his own website: "Dammit, tell him to get his mouth under control!" etc. Time magazine had "Anger Management 101." The New York Times headlined: "As the Race Turns Hot, What About Dean's Collar?" on "the impression that he is a man with lots of anger, an attribute that repels many voters."

But as anger repels some, it attracts others. It can even be a relief, especially when conflict is being suppressed or denied. So why does it get suddenly invoked as an overriding negative? I mean, why not suddenly focus on George Bush's ease in approving 152 executions in his six years as Texas governor, often with a smirk or a joke?

Posted by: Bruce Gottfred at February 13, 2004 at 12:43 AM

Um, in my previous comment, everything after the initial paragraph is part of the quote. My mistake.

Posted by: Bruce Gottfred at February 13, 2004 at 12:45 AM


I have two questions for you:

1) With 152 executions to choose from, surely you can provide us with a link to a single example of then-Gov. Bush joking about an execution as he "approved" it?

That would be quite a feat, as by law Texan governors are unable to "approve" (or cancel) executions. Their powers are limited to granting a single 30-day stay of execution.

2. Given that last item, should we assume that you're merely ignorant, or deliberately being a dishonest troll?

Posted by: Don Eyres at February 13, 2004 at 01:57 AM

No Don, Bruce isn't being a troll. He said himself (in his second post) that the final paragraph of his first was part of the quote, not his own words. The one you should be going after is the ``clever Canadian columnist.''

Posted by: Annalucia at February 13, 2004 at 02:17 AM


Fair enough. Please replace "Bruce" with "clever Canadian columnist" in my post above.


Please redirect my tart comments towards some modest Canadian columnist who clearly has much to be modest about, and accept my apologies.


Posted by: Don Eyres at February 13, 2004 at 03:19 AM

Time and Newsweek are right-wing media? That Canadian columnist is a whackjob.

Posted by: Rick C at February 13, 2004 at 05:08 AM

The really interesting thing is that apparently all the negative Dean ads were funded by a shadow group affiliated with TA DA KERRY!!

Posted by: rabidfox at February 13, 2004 at 06:58 AM