Two Sunday Interviews

 I saw John Brennan on MTP today.  I misjudged the man.  There is nothing trivial about him.  He is too solemn for his own good, but, that is a minor failing.  The intensity and obvious hostility towards many members of Congress and the media were palpable.  He resents the media's constant whoring after sensation.  Fair enough.  i would resent it as well.  I do think he is a little gullible.  Yemen, a trustworthy partner?  Count your fingers, John.  Count your fingers.


And then there was Sarah Palin being interviewed by Chris Wallace on FNS. Frightening.  Can this woman really be as empty headed as she sounds?    At one point she said that she "would never make people feel that she knows better then they…" What are we to make of that?   Do we really want the chief executive of the United States to be no more intelligent nor better informed that the average citizen?  At another point she said that Obama offends her because behind a podium  he looks like a law professor and not a "commander in chief."  Well, what I understand from that is that she does not know that the office of president and the function of commander in chief are different.  The president is commander in chief of the armed forces of the United States, not commander in chief of the United States.   The president has to "earn his way."  It sounds as though she would prefer a dictator (roughly "commander in chief" in Latin).  She also is offended by what she and others call "giving American constitutional protections to terrorists."  Does she and the others who say this not know that it is a long settled principle of American law that the Bill of Rights applies to all those in US custody except enemy soldiers.  The "undie bomber" is not an enemy soldier.  John Yoo was wrong about this.  Finally, she implies that "the generals" should be allowed to do what ever they think best and given whatever resources they think best.

I am coming to the conclusion that this woman is an emerging mindless tool of people like Bill Kristol and a danger to republican government pl

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46 Responses to Two Sunday Interviews

  1. Ronald says:

    “I am coming to the conclusion that this woman is an emerging mindless tool of people like Bill Kristol and a danger to republican government”
    I believe it was Kristol and his ilk that pushed her to the McCain campaign in the first place. Without him, she would likely still be governor of Alaska. An empty suit (or head) is exactly what the neocons desire, I suspect. In her case, ignorance is not a “bug,” but is a feature.
    I also think her ignorance is endearing to some of her supporters. But perhaps saying that makes me an elitist.

  2. Arun says:

    Well, the appearances are that the edumacated folks haven’t run the country very well.
    But all we can do is to try to get competent and honest people in office – and Palin isn’t either.

  3. par4 says:

    G W Bush wasn’t?

  4. Buzz Meeks says:

    Fascism raised its ugly head here in the 1930’s and it has now fully emerged. It has been very patient, all the the players have now been put in place.
    Ronald you are not being elitist, they are proud of their ignorance which been shaped by Fox/Goebbels News and the Christian right wing. They don’t even realize their ignorance.
    Wait till Fox starts making campaign contributions, thanks to the Brethren, and reports on election news.
    Probably time to start screening “Our Hitler, A film from Germany” around the country.Perhaps Michael Moore will take it care of distribution.
    Buzz Meeks

  5. batondor says:

    I read Garry Wills’ new book, “Bomb Power”, over the past couple of days and would recommend it to all even if much of the history involved is common knowledge to most of your readers…
    For my own part, I was unaware of the speech that Ed Meese gave at Tulane in 1987 because I was preoccupied overseas at the time…
    I don’t know if you will have the time to read his account of the rise of the modern presidency (and I have a feeling you already dislike him for his harsh critique of the American involvement in Vietnam), but his synthesis of the durable growth of presidential prerogatives is powerful…
    … and it’s all the more striking that I thought of all this while watching Henry Paulson, Alan Greenspan, and Tim Geithner on the Sunday talk shows this morning…
    The remaining dilemma, of course, is how to “undo” this unfortunate circumstance that makes if virtually impossible for the Chief Executive to explicitly defer responsibilities both specific and general to the legislative branch where it belongs in the most explicit constitutional terms…
    PS: I happy to see that you are apparently recovered from the flu…

  6. Robert in SB says:

    I would be interested to find out who is writing all her op-eds. There is a big difference between her half baked chatter and inconsistencies and the policy nerd stuff that has her byline. She appears to be an even more artificial creation, a brand name being produced and manufactured, like Olestra and Aspartame.

  7. Lysander says:

    Very well spoken, Col. Alas Mrs Palin recently endorsed Rand Paul for senate in Kentucky. Should a Ron Paul fan rejoice or weep?

  8. Arun says:

    Andrew Sullivan tells us to “know fear”. He may have a point.

  9. walrus says:

    “I am coming to the conclusion that this woman is an emerging mindless tool of people like Bill Kristol and a danger to republican government ”
    As Ronald so aptly put it ignorance is a feature, not a bug. It is quite clear that at least some of the supporters of a Republican Party would like America to elect a blank canvas on which they can write large.
    An empty headed narcissist who would be totally dependent on their advisors fills the bill very nicely. I think George W. Bush, while not a narcissist, also filled that bill.
    I’m not sure yet if the same thing can be said about President Obama.

  10. Jackie says:

    Thank you for watching Palin and reporting on what she had to say. I’m sorry, I just can’t watch her because I cringe when I hear her voice.
    I do believe Kristol and crew would love a blank slate like her, just as they had with G.W. Bush.
    (OT-I’m glad you got plowed out from the major snow storm. The media made it sound like the end was near.)

  11. Patrick Lang says:

    we are still hip deep in snow. I am waiting for a neighbor’s son to come dig the two cars out. pl

  12. ISL says:

    Dear Colonel, I share your concerns. To my mind, forward looking of the current administration (the biggest disappointment) suggests the next (Petraeus/Palin?) will inherit a system of a president above the law. Crossing the Rubicon seems to have been in silence.

  13. curious says:

    Palin cought reading and answer from cheat sheet written on her palm. (She is degenerate to middle school level of trick now.)
    I for one think she should be replaced with a computer graphic and auto content text generator. (I got to push the surrealist pig-latin button.) Your very own personal talking head.
    But she seems to sell a lot of book. So the joke is on the public.!%29-HandPrompter-Hilarity:-Read-The-Words-on-Palins-Hand

  14. Charles I says:

    You had culture wars. Now you’re going to have elite ignorance wars.
    The danger is not the beard, whoever,she/he be today, although the glint in her eye as she wags a censuring finger in a WaPo picture today is scary.
    It is that the brains, the money, that has patiently manipulated your country to this sorry pass since Fox and PNAC took up arms, have done so virtually unopposed, judging by the results to date. It is that the meat of American exceptionalism, so glorious of heart, so generously exported, is so gloriously ignorant – the world seen as sets in a play, PL wrote below.
    It matters not whether some ultimately toil for Jesus, Y****H, or Mammon. One’s god wants all the ME, one’s wants it blown up and redeveloped for a 1000 year plan, and the latter don’t care because it all pays handsomely and comes with health insurance. None of them wish to reduce military spending or reconfigure your foreign policy or economy for public domestic benefit.
    They certainly don’t toil for you, or your Constitution. Americans already seem inured to the gigantic permanent war national security state part of the social contract, antipathetic to those bits dedicated more, er, socially. Keep them scared, broke and angry, and a mob no posse of pointy headed liberal elites could ever shout down will deliver you what Fox scripts and the Supremes consecrate.
    Regardless of Palin, this has been in works for generations. The fact that the analysis is centered on tea parties and Palin/Fox rather than on serious informed debate over pressing issues over at PBS speaks volumes, at volume, ad nauseum.
    Stopping the recount in 2000 was the subjective Rubicon to me. Re-electing Bush, well, the scope of my ignorance of America, so gross as to be hardly creditable, was dolorously confirmed. All the rest’s been seemingly ineluctable political and social entropy for my side.
    You are in danger, no doubt about it, have been for some time. Which of course, is PNAC’s,the Bible’s,and Netanyahu’s meassge. I’m not one of you, but I beg you please work against it, and prevail, missionaries and all

  15. grae castle says:

    i’m not always, or even often, right. but damn – i wish i had time to sit down and have an honest discourse with a palincheneybushlibbywolfowitzkristolite. gawd, we know they exist, and unfortuntately, we are all too aware that they have some (i’m being intentionally “naïve” here…) influence in geo-domestic polibidness mastersoftheunderverse machinations, but DAMNIT – how do the keep their believers believing.
    i’ve sipped that koolaid – it’s not that tasty…
    as always, you’re putting your fingers on the sensitive spots. please keep at it. perhaps someones with super abilities are listening and doing.

  16. different clue says:

    I don’t think her head is entirely empty. Her head is filled with spite, vengeance, and wounded pride. And so she is a vessel for the discontent of millions of people whose heads are filled with the same.
    I know all that snow must be a severe inconvenience, but there are places and people who wish they had some fraction of it. I spent yesterday digging up our latest snowfall from off my yard to pack onto my garden. We got a whole inch of snow! With three inch snow drifts in places!
    If your region gets a heat wave in the next few days, all that snow melting at once could cause some flooding here and there. Hopefully the authorities are prepared. Anyone with a house in a low spot with a lot of upslope snow right around them should prepare to exclude a bunch of water from their basement; or prepare to handle it if they can’t exclude it.

  17. Patrick Lang says:

    We have the local weakness for animals. All this snow is difficult for the rabbits, deer and other creatures about. We have spread cabbage, carrots and other comestibles in the back garden for them pl

  18. AW says:

    Palin’s rise in politics reminds me of H.L. Mencken quote
    “As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

  19. SAC Brat says:

    While I watched the Palin interview the thought that kept coming to mind was how easy Hillary Clinton could make her cry in a debate, if a debate was allowed by Palin’s handlers.
    I’m getting fed up with Democrats who are afraid of their own shadows and Bizarro-World Republicans with their audacious lies. It’s to the point where I’d like to see Bernie Sanders of Vermont run on the “Cut The Crap” platform or anyone else who can help the populists jump the more difficult mental hurdles in cognitive thought without injury.

  20. jonst says:

    “Fascism raised its ugly head here in the 1930’s and it has now fully emerged” wrote Buzz M.
    Perhaps….but if forced to bet I would go with Nihilism. Nihilism is emerging in the guise of Sarah Palin. Perhaps people, I would call fascists, think they can harness and ride Nihilism. But it did not work so well the last time it was tried by them. See Berlin 1945.

  21. She was “discovered” and pushed by the Neocons.
    Read my book “Dark Crusade: Christian Zionism and US Foreign Policy” (London: Tauris, 2008) for background on Fundis, Zionism, and the Republican and the Democratic parties…and Fascism in America.

  22. jamzo says:

    the sarah palin phenomenon is not unprecedented
    some call sarah “bush-lite”
    karl rove mentored GW
    sarah has rupert murdoch, roger ailes, and fox news as mentors

  23. johnf says:

    “Last week, speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, John Brennan, the White House’s top adviser on terrorism, described the outlines of the Obama administration’s new counterterrorism strategy. During his appearance, which drew several hundred people to the basement conference room at CSIS, I had a chance to ask Brennan about US policy toward Hezbollah and Hamas. In his response, Brennan opened the door a crack to the idea of a new US policy toward the two groups, and his comments stirred some unhappiness at the State Department…..”

  24. johnf says:

    “Last week, speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, John Brennan, the White House’s top adviser on terrorism, described the outlines of the Obama administration’s new counterterrorism strategy. During his appearance, which drew several hundred people to the basement conference room at CSIS, I had a chance to ask Brennan about US policy toward Hezbollah and Hamas. In his response, Brennan opened the door a crack to the idea of a new US policy toward the two groups, and his comments stirred some unhappiness at the State Department…..”

  25. Andrew says:

    As a Canadian who has watched the Bnai Brith groom, and produce the actual Canadian Govt. composed of a bunch of degenerate, simpleton nutjobs. I would suggest that you learn to love President Palin.

  26. J says:

    One word describes Mrs. Palin and her politics — NEOCON.

  27. Matthew says:

    Col: Didn’t she also say that if Obama didn’t bomb Iran, he would not be reelected.
    Maybe I live in a bubble, but I don’t know anyone (except some hardcore Zionists) who claim Iran is a determinant issue.

  28. N. M. Salamon says:

    Charles I noted that there is no serious discussion…
    There is, such as:
    But the elites from both sides disregard the warnings, and like ostriches prefer to keep their head in ther sand!
    The few sane voices [as the Colonel and most guests here] can not prevail over the misinformation avalanche consciously perpetrated by the war monger, eternal economic growth, and scientifically illiterate crowd – who are willing to sacrifice the USA and the whole wrold to gain their personal power!
    A different and far more dangerous sceniaro is depicted by Mr Kunsler in:
    We’re Weimar at
    My analysis is that fascism has reached the USA not later than Bush II, but if not, then the te party crowd [or rather their backers] will establish same with the help of the Supremes.

  29. curious says:

    Fundis, Zionism, and the Republican and the Democratic parties…and Fascism in America.
    Posted by: Clifford Kiracofe | 08 February 2010 at 07:57 AM
    Hey is it me or Bibi and his crews are not welcomed in DC? I mean they come every other weeks in DC before. now, nada.
    But the european scene is all Israel all the time. They are there every other week.
    Bush era news pattern is showing up all over europe. “odd side news, followed bigger outrage, then visit by Israel dignitaries”. Neocon signature work. As easily readable as al qaeda hack jobs.
    Germany right now is a neocon hacking project. Israel wants that freebie submarine and corvette so badly. They are throwing all holocaust card they can think of. I wonder what merkel is thinking. (I can’t read her at all. She is good at keeping her actual move.)
    Italy (that country is a neocon banana republic for sure. Big kiss and hug photos. Good thing nobody cares about italian government.)
    China (It is very interesting that no israel dignitaries acts like they own the place in there. No visit, no announcement, no acting out. Israel-Iran matter seems to be pure State dept. action.)
    Russia. (They just cancel International Conference of the Jewish Agency. Putin says no to their attempt to back billionaire Leonid Bnzlen.)
    Turkey (Anybody know what that entire ‘ergenekon’ purge/coup rumor/trial? I can’t decide if it’s real failed coup attempt, some external conspiracy plot discover, or some kind of political show. They read like bad spy novel plot. My first take, it has something to do with israel, erdogan party, right wing faction of turkish military.)
    Interesting time we live in. without internet, I would never be able to see these pattern.

  30. Patrick Lang says:

    She was wearing her flags pin. The Israelis understand that people like her are waiting for the rapture to come and the 1000 year reign of God when there will only be 25,000 unconverted Jews, but they don’t care because they think religion is bunk or Christianity is bunk, or both. pl

  31. Patrick Lang says:

    I will go into hiding and become the occulted colonel. pl

  32. confusedponderer says:

    Read my book “Dark Crusade: Christian Zionism and US Foreign Policy” (London: Tauris, 2008) for background on Fundis, Zionism, and the Republican and the Democratic parties…and Fascism in America.

    I have just ordered Dark Crusade (paperback) and I very much look forward to reading it after carnival, that is, after Ash Wednesday. Carnival is a thing we Colognians take very seriously.
    Thus, first things first, and a hearty: Kölle Alaaf. 🙂

  33. “Every civilization carries the seeds of its own destruction, and the same cycle shows in them all. The Republic is born, flourishes, decays into plutocracy, and is captured by the shoemaker whom the mercenaries and millionaires make into a king. The people invent their oppressors, and the oppressors serve the function for which they are invented.” Mark Twain

  34. Charles I says:

    Andrew, please do more than watch. Take active measures within your circle to discredit and rid us of our degenerate simpleton nutjobs, maybe we can defeat the pricks this time. If you just sit and watch this gang, well, I can’t love you. Your country needs you to annoy, er, inform friends, mp’s editors of the insidious bullshit that passes for governance with this crowd, and enlist them in putting an end to it.
    please, N. M. Salamon, I meant serious debate in the msm, I’m periodically whinging that here we speak to the converted, etc.
    Everybody read Cliff’s Book Dark Crusade and then read Jeff Sharlett’s The Family for a peek under these crazy tents, these people want VERY BAD THINGS
    re local weakness for . . . other creatures about. We have spread cabbage, carrots and other comestibles in the back garden for them.”
    I knew you’re a dog man, but good on ya, ya crusty old bugger. Haitian distemper aside, you’re my kind of other creature. . .

  35. Paul in NC says:

    At one point she said that she “would never make people feel that she knows better then they…”
    I don’t think we have to worry about that.

  36. BillWade,NH says:

    Lots of folks are saying that if President Obama attacks Iran (including Patrick Buchanan who I find hard to take) he can be re-elected. I think the whole Palin thing is to thwart the Ron Paul movement – the much smarter/humbler wing of the Rep Party. I’m hoping against all odds that Paul, Dean, and Kucinich can set aside idealogy aside and form a new 3rd party which would have the best interests of the USA first and foremost.

  37. Patrick Lang says:

    Charles I
    I like you, too, but the typical Canadian smugness, radiating from up there in your icebox is hard to take.
    Haiti. Are you relly so in love with your “virtuous” belief in national sovereignty and dignity in the midst of an absence of government, universal money corruption, starvation, incredible poverty, etc., that you dare to speak with a superior air of my impatience with the Evelyn Waugh farce on that wretched island? pl
    Oh, by the way, I continue to think that you morally superior Canucks and Germans should take charge of Haiti so that we can leave. pl

  38. lina says:

    Are you in Koln? I was there last year at Carnival time. I was the only one walking the streets without a beer in my hand. Additionally, I was pissed because the Picasso museum was closed. You guys know how to party.

  39. optimax says:

    Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich are ignored by the msm and aren’t as telegenic as Palin, who is being groomed by Roger Ailes (we share the same alma mater), the king maker, to be the next president. Unfortunaqtely, the ability of the media to manipulate public opinion may once again succeed. Palin reminds me of the down-home, con-man celebrity Andy Griffith played in “A Face in the Crowd.” It would be beneficial to our democracy if there is a Patricia O”Neal character brave enough to sabatoge the image Fox is creating, as there was in the movie.
    To back up her tough talk she should form an A-Team with Beck, Rushbo and led by Chuck Norris, to rescue the missionaries jailed in Haiti. W could pilot the copter. She would then be unstopable.

  40. EL says:

    Col. Lang:
    Adam Smith said: “There is a great deal of ruin in a nation.” Sarah Palin prove how smart Smith was.

  41. different clue says:

    N. M. Salamon,
    There are actually quite a few serious discussion venues here and there on the
    internets, plus many sites which have serious little facets of broader fact or discussion. An interesting blogger writing about problems of survival amid decay is Colonel John Robb of Global Guerillas. (Though
    I sometimes wonder whether he isn’t actually trying in his small way to create and increase the sort of global disorder which would be good for private security bussinesses like his security consultancy). Still, he seems to be addressing some real issues.
    Another one is Colonel Jeff Vail, findable under his own name, who is blogging about ecological economy sustainability issues and how to create and
    build small-scale social resiliency to disturbance or shortages of inputs.
    I enjoy reading James Kunstler. Its lots of fun. But he has some self-blinding prejudices. He is antisouthernitic, antiruralitic, and antisuburbanitic; if I might coin a few words. And he tends to count his freudes before they schaden.
    Suburbia may turn into a zone of neo-peasant villages, but it isn’t going to disappear no matter how hard Kunstler wishes it would.
    As I think about Palin, the Tea Party people, and the Republican Party; I begin to think about the little I have read about the Weimar-to-Nazi transition. von Papen and the other German big rich leaders thought Hitler was a manipulable empty headed leader of a manipulable empty headed movement. So they thought they would make him Chancellor and he would be their Disney animatronic robot. He surprised them. In the same
    way, the Republican Party thinks it will lead Palin to various high positions and guide her actions; and through such guidance, guide her movement. I think
    the Republicans are playing with chunks of highly enriched political uranium. And the Republicans are performing their political Palin experiments without any control rods or moderators or instrumentation of any sort.
    And no containment either.
    Colonel Lang, I have neither been to Israel nor talked to any Israelis here, so the only things I know about what they might be thinking are what I read.
    I wonder whether the center-leftward 2/5ths of the population there really think any less or differently of Christianity as against Judaism as religious belief-systems. I suspect that center-left 2/5ths neither approve of the Palinites nor especially welcome their support for the Outlaw Settlements project. I can’t claim to really know, but I do have to wonder. As to the right to far-right
    3/5ths of the population; I should think (or at least hope) that they can see the sharp discontinuity between Catholicism/ Eastern Orthodoxy/ basic Protestantism as against the
    Darby-Rapture cults and cultists. If they do see that sharp discontinuity; perhaps it is only Darby-Rapture cultism which they dismiss as bunkum? Even as they think to exploit its accolytes? (If that is the case, then the Darby-Rapturites will have the last laugh, especially if Palin is elected President. Because they are, and would become even more so, able to engineer Israel into a nuclear war designed to transform most of the Israelis into ionized plasma in the belief that Darby’s chosen 25,000 will survive. Bill Krystol will be just as surprised as von Papen was).
    If I am wrong about all that, I hope that you or others will find the nicest possible way to correct me.
    Finally, I hope those animals are properly thankful for the food you are giving them. One hopes they will show their gratitude by respecting your garden starting in spring, and keeping their damage therein to a reasonable minimum. (We used to feed birds when I was a kid, and I would do so now if I weren’t so inert about it).

  42. ked says:

    I am heartened that a number of commenters recognize a crucial fact about Palin & much of the TP movement – one thoroughly lost on mainstream analysts.
    They’re Christianists – politicized radical Christians animated by end times indoctrination & a reactionary-authoritarian church culture. Their Faith far transcends modern America. Most dangerously, they are self-anointed Chosen Christians. Certainty in this special status justifies any means – deception comes easily to them – and imbues them with substantial drive. Ignorance and calculation within our broader society has been their ally. They make great political soldiers (ask the RNC staff or AIPAC) – other types as well, excited to take part in the End.
    They are our Nation’s Enemy Within.

  43. Thomas says:

    Sarah Palin will not be President of the US. This woman is heading for a public crash and burn that has been delayed due to MSM protecting their favored son John McCain for not properly vetting her.
    If I am wrong (won’t) I will buy our Committee of Correspondence a last drink at an Arlington tavern prior to our arrest as un-American fifth column terrorists. The Colonel won’t be there since he will be occulted to come back and decisively defeat the Queen of Babble-on.

  44. confusedponderer says:

    yes, Köln it is. There will be a lot of singing in the local dialect, silly costumes of course, dancing, unruliness and many a Kölsch, our local brew, will be drunk. And then, of course, on Rose Monday there will be the parades, where costumed people throw sweets into cheering crowds.
    The only thing that might draw down the fun a bit are the foreigners who come here for a few days to get wasted. They don’t get the dialect, and not what carnival is about for Colognians: Local identity.
    So they stand by and just get drunk. Not that Colognians don’t get drunk, to the contrary, they only do so in a more meaningful way 😉

  45. Thomas says:

    A Follow-up to my previous post.
    Democracy is a messy business but its openness allows pent up frustations, ambitions, and fears to be expressed. A vital and necessary relief valve for a political system to sustain itself. The US has in essence three political parties; Democrats and Republican as the formal ones and independent/unaffiliated as the informal one providing an electoral balance for extremism in the other two.
    Even the Nazis had to get elected before taking over. We (US) are not done yet.

  46. John Waring says:

    What does his choice of Palin for VP say about John McCain? She was as empty headed then as she is now. This complete non-entity, one heart beat away from the presidency? Our politics have left the realm of farce and have entered the domain of burlesque. I’m all for Howdy Doody time, but not in the White House. I’ll take my dime and go to channel nine.

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