Quotes of Note, 2004
"After Miller left the stage I hustled my way up to the seventh floor to listen to Vice President Cheneys speech in the hall itself. My first thought was, bold words for a man whose office is the subject of an on-going criminal inquiry. But apparently thats not the subject of polite conversation."
-- Josh Marshall, Talking Points Memo, 9/1/04
"Sometimes I think our friends on the other side have become the people of the Nine Commandments."
-- Bill Clinton on the GOP's lack of honesty, 8/29/04
"Had I been reading to children and had my top aide whisper in my ear that America is under attack, I would have told those kids very nicely and politely that the president of the United States has something that he needs to attend to."
-- John Kerry on how he would've immediately reacted to the 9/11/01 attacks, 8/5/04
"As the movie Outfoxed makes clear, FOX News is for all practical purposes a GOP. propaganda agency...Commentators worked hard to spin scenes [from last week's Democratic convention] that didn't fit the script. Some simply saw what they wanted to see. On Fox, Michael Barone asserted that conventioneers cheered when Mr. Kerry criticized President Bush but were silent when he called for military strength. Check out the video clips at Media Matters; there was tumultuous cheering when Mr. Kerry talked about a strong America."
-- Pual Krugman, NY Times, 8/3/04 (via Scoobie)
"It underscores the fact that the left/right with FNC thing has long since passed into comparative irrelevance in this mini-industry. FOX News is hated because they're elitists -- and the worst winners television's ever seen."
-- Keith Olbermann to CableNewser.com, 6/29/04
"Things are so bad that nobody could even guarantee the security of a single public event, which was, let us remember, supposedly the culmination of purpose for the whole invasion. What's going on right now is obviously nothing but an attempt by the Bush White House to set up someone else to take the blame for the ongoing shitstorm."
-- Bob Harris at Tom Tomorrow's Blog, 6/28/04
Shallow, phony patriotism will always draw a crowd, like dogs humping in the street.
-- MSNBC's Keith Olbermann (reacting to the [questionable] ratings showing that FOX News Channel was the [allegedly] most watched cable news outlet covering memorial events for Ronald Reagan)
If Bush had gone to AA or AlAnon, he would have learned the Serenity Prayer: "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference." From this spritual perspective, Inerrant Boy's Iraqi adventure can be viewed as a massive failure of "wisdom to know the difference." A realist would take into account what can, and what cannot, be changed.
-- Lambert Strether, Corrente, 6/19/04
"The war in Iraq is a large problem. There's a lot of what Jimmy Carter called 'malaise' around."
-- Former President George H. Bush to TIME magazine, published 6/1/04
"The president episodically poses as a healer and 'uniter'. If he president really has any desire to play that role, then I call upon him to condemn Rush Limbaugh -- perhaps his strongest political supporter -- who said that the torture in Abu Ghraib was a 'brilliant maneuver' and that the photos were 'good old American pornography,'and that the actions portrayed were simply those of 'people having a good time and needing to blow off steam.'"
-- President-elect Al Gore, May 26, 2004 (via Scoobie)
"How come no one has been held accountable [for the World Trade Center attack]? Isn't there something wrong when so far the only person to be fired because of terrorism is me?"
-- Bill Maher at the Creative Coalition dinner, May 25, 2004
Whether or not the United States views itself as an empire, it is obvious that for many foreigners and international critics, we look, walk and talk like one and they have responded accordingly.
An empire that displays weakness and is not taken seriously is in serious trouble. However, being perceived as capricious or imperious is also dangerous. The problem has often occurred when an imperial power insists on imposing a particular vision on the world.
It seems to me that in fighting the global war against terrorism, we need to restrain what are growing U.S. messianic instincts a sort of global social engineering where the United States feels it is both entitled and obligated to promote democracy by force if necessary.
-- Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS), May 3, 2004 (via Jerome Doolittle and Rodger A. Payne)
KEITH OLBERMANN: You do know that they are still going after you, right? We promoted the fact that you would be on this show tonight. Today we received three separate copies of the same e-mail with talking points from the White House, one asking a contact here "Can you please get this to the Olbermann people. Wilson is on the Olbermann show." Misspelled my name, by the way, but that's neither here nor there. Another one asks one of our producers, "I understand you have Mr. Wilson on. Can you please call me on this?"Are you surprised by that?
AMB. JOSEPH WILSON: No, I'm not surprised at all. I tell you -- this administration has tried to manage and direct the news from the very beginning. As I point out in the book, they have made the lives of journalists very unpleasant. One journalist said he was afraid to go to print because he might end up in Guantanamo, which I take to be a metaphor for being cut out. Another journalist said I've got kids in a private school and a mortgage to pay. So I'm not surprised at all.
-- Countdown with Keith Olbermann, May 4, 2004
"At this point, I think voting for Bush is a character flaw."
-- Janeane Garofalo to The Daily Show's Jon Stewart, 5/5/04 (tip o' the hat to Jerome Doolittle)
"Can you imagine being potty-trained by Barbara Bush?"
-- Colin McEnroe, WTIC, 5/5/04 (second tip o' the hat to Jerome Doolittle)
"[Jay] Severin sells himself as a straight shooter, a determined truth-teller. If he truly were that, he would have admitted that he said something morally appalling, and he'd have offered a manful apology, with no weasel words, qualifiers, or escape clauses. Instead, Severin has played the charlatan, hiding behind a Clintonesque denial and trying to fool his audience into thinking he has won a great victory in the small correction of his quote. He hasn't been vindicated, and his faux populist palaver is complete intellectual dishonesty."
-- Scott Lehigh, Boston Globe, 4/29/04 (tip of the hat to Hesiod)
"A black C student can't run no f%$#ing company. A black C student can't even be the manager of Burger King. Meanwhile, a white C student just happens to be the president of the United States of America!"
-- Chris Rock, as broadcast on HBO April 17, 2004
"In the course of about a week, Condoleezza Rice has gone from looking like the next running mate of George Bush to looking like the next cell mate of Martha Stewart. It makes perfect sense for her not to want to testify under oath, as she will have to lie to protect herself and her President, and she knows from the history of Watergate and Iran-Contra that lying in a cover-up is much more dangerous than the original crimes. The problem is that you can't simultaneously resist testifying under oath and be the ubiquitous hard-line spokesmodel for the Bush Administration position to any friendly 'journalist' who will help you spread the manure. You quickly start to look like a fool and a liar. Her situation has become so untenable that you have to wonder whether the Machiavellian hand of Dick Cheney is advising her on what to do, thus eliminating his rival for the job he wants to keep."
-- Xymphora, March 28, 2004
"George Bush is not even as subtle as Nixon. The attempt to smear Daniel Ellsberg was a black bag job, It was secret. Bush admits to wanting to ruin Dick Clarke, something that isn't going to happen. But it makes Bush look small and evil. In a week of allegations, they never denied the substance of his charges, which is that the Bush Administration neglected to take terrorism as seriously as the last two administrations did. They tried to turn Clarke's words around on him, but do they think the MIT-trained, 30 year bureaucrat, is stupid enough to write a book at variance with previous sworn testimony?"
-- Steve Gilliard, March 28, 2004
"We're spending billions on missile defense, and a measly few million on improving port security. While terrorists may obtain a nuclear weapon, they are unlikely to obtain a reliable intercontinental missile delivery system. Why bother? They just need to float into any port and push the button."
-- Atrios, March 12, 2004
"These guys [the GOP power elite] are the most crooked, you know, lying group I've ever seen."
-- John Kerry, March 9, 2004
"If the president of the United States can find time to go to a rodeo, he can spend more than one hour before the commission."
-- John Kerry, March 8, 2004
"If more social conservatives like Gary Bauer partially open their eyes and see that they've sold their vote to the economic royalists and gotten nothing but empty promises in return, then Karl Rove's fear of losing decisive margins of social conservatives might just come to pass. If that happens this election, for progressives November 2nd will be a rapturous day."
-- DHinMi, Daily Kos, 2/21/04
"It looks like the Bush administration will be handing over power to the Iraqis by June 30th... and, then they'll be handing over power to the Democrats on Nov 2nd."
-- David Letterman, 2/20/04 (via Atrios)
"The heck with the anti-Semitism -- the movie sounds like a snuff flick. But then Bush would have no problem with that."
-- Lambert, Corrente, 2/20/04
"Given the president's record as a businessman, and since he's now run the country hopelessly into debt, isn't it about time he sells the country off to some rich friends who will swallow the loss so he can move on to greener pastures?"
-- Josh Marshall, 2/10/04
"If this were the Clinton administration, we'd have a bevy of bimbos from the barbizon school of former prosecutors on Larry King 5 nights per week giving us the play by play on the real and made up news."
-- Atrios on Traitorgate, 2/9/04
"Investigations abound, and we're not settling for sacrificial lambs anymore. Nothing less than indictments will suffice. The Senate hacking scandal. 9-11 commission. Iraq intelligence "failures". Plame Affair. Investigations of Cheney's Halliburton. Cheney's energy task force. And so on. The dam is sprouting leaks, and they're scrambling to plug the holes. They will whitewash most of these investigations, but the dam won't hold for long. Something will get through and bring the whole thing down."
-- Kos, 2/7/04
"Only Fred Flintstone on crack would think Russert will rough Bush up."
-- The smarter Roger Ailes, 2/6/04
"`I want the American people to know that I, too, want to know the facts,' Bush told reporters on Friday." Uh, I thought Bush already knew the facts? And that is why he took the country to war?
-- Lambert, Corrente, 2/1/04
"You can think of the Beltway -- inside the interstate loop isn't exactly arccurate, but it is still descriptive in its own way -- as a biosphere with a different atmosphere. The air is hotter, the wit is drier and the altitude is thought of as higher. It's like Vulcan in Star Trek, except everything is done by illogic and no one's telepathy works."
-- Stirling Newbury, Daily Kos, 1/27/04
"The wooden ballot box in Dixville Notch was given more scrutiny by the national media than will be given to computerized voting systems all this year."
-- The smarter Roger Ailes, 1/27/04
"Deficits can be very, very constructive if the funds so raised are used in a productive manner, such as what brought me to Syracuse in the first place: the G.I. Bill of Rights. But when you piss the money away in useless wars and ill-conceived tax cuts, you're headed toward becoming a banana republic."
-- Martin J. Whitman, investor, Jan. 26/04
"Despite all of this stupid bullsh!t that the Republican National Committee -- or whatever the bullsh!t they call them -- that they were saying that they're all angry about how two of these ads were comparing Bush to Hitler? I mean, out of thousands of submissions, they find two! They're like f@%#ing looking for Hitler in a haystack. You now? I mean, George Bush is not Hitler. He would be if he f@%#ing applied himself.... They could have moved [Judge Roy Moore's monument of] the Ten Commandments to Bush's office -- which he needs them, desperately. Or maybe he needs a new version of the Ten Commandments -- George W. Bush's Ten Commandments! Thou shalt not steal... votes. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's... country. Thou shalt not kill... for oil. Thou shalt not take grammar... in vain!"
-- Margaret Cho at the MoveOn.org "Bush in 30 Seconds" awards ceremony, 1/13/04 (more details from Cho herself right here)
CLOTHES MAKE THE MAN:
"General Clark (who graduated at the top of his West Point class) can wear this:
But George W. Bush can 't.
"Because George W. Bush is an underachieving frat boy drunk. So it wouldn't be funny.
"And because he's not afraid of horses like the phony Cowboy Dubya...
...General Clark could wear cowboy boots and a hat when he campaigns out west without looking like a ridiculous poseur."
-- The Horse, Media Whores Online, 1/12/04
"The president of the United States makes me angry. He thinks he's right. He's one of these 'God' people. I mean, God doesn't exist to make human beings feel they're right -- that's something absolutely irreligious. If God is there, he's a mysterious being. And to take over godly powers is hubris: it's something you should never do."
-- Sir Colin Davis, conductor and music director of the London Symphony Orchestra, to FT, publ. 1/9/04
Click here for "Quotes of Note" for 2003
Click here for "Quotes of Note" for 2002
Click here for "Quotes of Note" for 2001
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