Boehner Jokes

One of Jon Stewart’s most outstanding moments during the Bush administration was a 2006 segment—they called it “Rambling Man”—in which he dutifully displayed the 43rd president’s hapless and constant speechifying in response to violent events in Iraq that had spiraled out of his control and the resultant collapse of his popularity. In the interest of fairness and journalistic integrity—two things are no doubt synonymous with the awesome Daily Show—Mr. Stewart has now given the 44th president the very same treatment. The result: Escapist hilarity followed by a depressing comedown.  

If Barack Obama’s personal and much-publicized attack on incoming House speaker John Boehner is any indication, we can assume the White House has finally caught up to what is certain to be the ugly result of the upcoming elections. This, Dear Readers, is what both people like me (self-aware employers of clichés) and the president (as a basketball enthusiast) must recognize as running out the clock.

The president journeyed to someplace known as Parma, Ohio, to tout three new economic initiatives. Since we know for certain that the demonstrable failure of already-implemented policies aren’t to blame for Democratic electoral woes, many in the Washington chattering class have been hectoring him to make a “hard pivot”—i.e. renewed speechifying and feckless stop-gap measures—to economic issues to shore up support for the party.

POLITICO has some salient details:

Touting his own economic plans, Obama alluded to three new proposals to jolt the struggling economy: a $50 billion federal investment to overhaul the nation’s railroads, highways and runways; a big tax break for businesses that conduct research and experimentation; and tax write-offs for companies’ expenditures on hiring, equipment and expansion.

Those measures carry a $180 billion price tag; Obama was careful to avoid calling it an economic stimulus plan, given the current national mood against government spending and the massive national debt. Republicans have nevertheless hammered the president, comparing his plan to the $814 billion emergency spending package he pushed through Congress last year – a measure the GOP leadership has declared a failure.

Tags: Barack Obama, John Boehner, 2010 midterms, George W. Bush, Jon Stewart, The Daily Show, Sherrod Brown (all tags)

Comments

42 Comments

I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

With friends like these...

by kasjogren 2010-09-08 11:26PM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

huh?

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-08 11:27PM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

It's cool, you are a front page poster and I am just a life long democrat.  Obviously we have different focuses.

by kasjogren 2010-09-08 11:30PM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

I bet we really don't. Like most progressives you probably haven't waken up to the extent of how problematic the party in Washington is. Yet. (Wait till that Catfood thing delivers its findings in December.) Alls I ask is that you keep an open mind if someone steps up to challenge the president since he's obviously failed. I mean, we're on the cusp of seeing Russ Feingold lose because of these people. Sharron Angle is about to be a senator ferchrissakes.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-08 11:36PM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

defeatism after HIR, financial reform, stim (even if small), and lilly bill is what will kill us.  We got 75% of what we wanted.  We didnt get immigration reform (yet) or cap and trade and we act like nothing happened and Obama made the top tax rate 0.

by kasjogren 2010-09-08 11:42PM | 2 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

Obama wouldn't even listen to Stiglitz and Krugman, and they were hardly the only guys saying we needed a major stimulus.

The country was crying for dramatic action and Obama gave us a half-baked half-stimulus and a YEAR of ridiculous sausage making over health reform. Sure, I'm glad we have some health reform, but Obama wouldn't even claim to take a public position on the thing for most of that year of debate. I mean come on! 

And, seriously, WTF is this Afghanistan nonsense???  Yeah, he had to talk about it in the campaign, but even Bush and Cheney had enough sense to realize that was foolhardy. All Obama needed to do was direct some additional resources there...not start some insane war against goat herders with AK-47s and a mission from Allah.

by spectator consumer 2010-09-09 12:02AM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

Wow, you really have not being paying attention this past year.

by vecky 2010-09-09 12:56AM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

Now you are defending the Afghanistan surge strategy as well?

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-09-09 01:58PM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

Defending? It was part of his campaign platform!

Overall I think it's better than the alternative - simply bombing them from the air wily nilly. Like that's worked so well over the past years.

by vecky 2010-09-09 02:38PM | 0 recs
RE: I believe the phrase you are looking for is...

YEP, you are right on.  Obama thought he was in Hollywood for his first year--i.e. Bill Clinton from 1992 to 1994, being cool, meeting starlets, etc. Then came 1994. Clinton must have be shook down to his shoes.  Obammie is about the get the same wakeup call. If/when the Republicraps take control of the House, the first guy to show up at the White House will be Ken Starr and his hatchet team from the GOP headquarters. Starr must be salviating. This time is target is an uppity black man who obviously doesn't know his place. This time Starr will have more money, more lawyers, and he knows where he screwed up with Clinton. He is also a bigoted racist (that is a matter of record -- my son took a 2nd year law course from him-he said at the time (2007) that if he gets the chance to go after Obama, he will make mincemeat of him. 

So here we go again.

by hddun2008 2010-09-09 11:21AM | 0 recs
On the money

I haven't been on this site in forever and I'm really pleased to see some decent/realistic coverage.  The analysis is spot on.  Obama has been a major disappointment, and he's not even close to being through with harming progressives.  Obama has either sold-out, was disingenuous campaigning, or is completely inept.

My personal theory is that a deal was struck with the Clintons back in the summer of 08.  Hillary didn't contest his nomination and in exchange Obama gave her the State Department and agreed to staff his WH with former Clinton people.  It's just a theory, but NONE of what has transpired is surprising given Obama's team.

Obama's/Clinton's team are the GOP's best friends. They believe in free trade, they cater big business, they hate and use the liberal base, and they aren't very good for the party as a whole.

So sad. I may never live to see another opportunity to turn this country in progressive direction.  It seems likely I'll never see the goal as open as it was for Obama. He had an open net with a goalie no where to be found and he decided to pass up the shot and kick the ball backwards. 

by spectator consumer 2010-09-08 11:30PM | 1 recs
RE: On the money

That's reasonable but one my theories is a bit different and depends on the analysis of Dick Morris (I know). When you read "Rewriting History," one thing you take away is the astoundingly bad political judgment of Hillary Clinton. This woman cautiously, callously overthinks everything--and yet she's almost always wrong. (And I say this not as a Clinton hater; I used to be a PUMA).

I struggle between the two ideas that explain Hillary's actions: 1) Either she misread the tealeaves and bought into the Obama hype herself and wanted to be on the right side of history (after all it's easy to imagine Hillary circa '69 as an Obama girl); or 2) She figured her political future would be better served if she left the Senate, thereby avoiding all the difficult votes that good people like Russ Feingold will have to eat this November.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-08 11:42PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

I knew you were a PUMA before I read your post.  It just screams "Frenemy", but that is what Jerome's blog has become since July 2008 anyway so I suppose it isn't surprising.  Just the teabaggers of the left.

by kasjogren 2010-09-08 11:48PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

I'll take what I can get. Teabagger or any other names you can think of is fine. 'Specially since we've been vindicated all over the place.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-08 11:51PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

Yea, all they have left is the name-calling.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-09-09 02:01PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

It's so regrettable. These people are what we might call Tina Turner progressives. (Except they're vicious conformists and Tina was and always will be adorable and innocent.) The ones that aren't completely in denial are steadily making excuses. They haven't yet tired of having their ass beat day after day and I'm beginning to think many of them are actually going to, like, vote for the president even if someone steps up to challenge him. Imagine that.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 02:09PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

She's smart to have stayed out of the Senate, that's for certain. But, it's easy to see how, for her, there was little upside to remain in the Senate if Obama was transformational and "The Savior" as he would get all the credit, whereas she would bear all the negativity if the economy failed to improve or Obama proved to be another Carter.

She's poised to make a primary challenge if she wants to, but, honestly, I think Obama himself isn't in that bad of shape in 2012.  He's still a very charismatic guy, plays to the middle on everything, and it's hard to hate him. Reminds me of Reagan that way...although I did manage to hate him.

by spectator consumer 2010-09-08 11:51PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

The only difference is Reagan didn't have an economic depression to deal with it. And that's a pretty huge fucking difference. Basically the whole ballgame. Obama's toast, I think. Depending on the charisma of his primary challenger, we may even see black voters desert the president (if belatedly--after all they only jumped aboard the bandwagon once he demonstrated his viability in Iowa) when things really get going.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-08 11:54PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

Hillary might be able to pull it off, and a good GOP candidate might make it close.  But, when you look at the GOP field, I have trouble imagining him losing. 

And, I think the economy is likely to pick up.

by spectator consumer 2010-09-09 12:06AM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

If it's Petraeus, Palin, or Romney, Obama's gone. Period.

And I haven't seen any indications that the economy will pick up. If anything the economic situation may significantly worsen. Partly because the political gridlock we're in for will make China's epic traffic jam look like a breezeway.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 12:10AM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

Petraeus I'll agree with you on, but Romney I can't see. Romney is human thorazine.

Palin, I have to totally part ways with you on. Palin would inspire people to come out to vote against her...she's just too nutty and too far right. 

Bush wasn't bright, in fact he comes across as a moron on most things.  Palin, however, is on a whole 'nother level of stupidity.

by spectator consumer 2010-09-09 12:20AM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

My attitude regarding Palin is simple: Remember Reagan. They said precisely--precisely!--the same things about Reagan. And incredibly, I believe Carter led Reagan in the polls until after the debate. That's a long time. End result: Reagan mercilessly blew Jimmy Carter out. A prime difference between Reagan and Palin, however, is that Reagan didn't inspire a cult of personality prior to being elected. Sarahcuda already has that. That makes her even more of a threat.

We're going to find out just how reliable the strategy of "My opponent is extreme!" is this November. It won't work. Voters largely won't hold Republicans accountable in 2012 for the mess of 2011 despite their majorities in both houses. It will be a referendum on Barack Obama, as it should be. Nothing else matters. We've gone from an amoral, clinically-depressed and alcoholic Richard Nixon, to a senile front man in Ronald Reagan, to a contemptible, unprincipled George H.W. Bush, to his semi-retarded ersatz cowboy son. Stop underestimating these people.

There's a brilliance about Sarah Palin that most--smart?--people who comprise the media elite simply can't understand. I knew she was serious when she resigned the governorship. People said she was flaky ('cause her hair was supposedly thinning and all kinds of nonsense). People said there was some other shoe about to drop. I said she wanted to be president in 2012 and needed to go to the Lower 48, earn some money and endorse candidates in order to do so. Since then she's proven her relative political acumen to many in her party. She's backed winners all over the place. She's brilliantly manipulated the media as well--old and new. Her next challenge is to convince the broad center she has a base level of competence (soft bigotry of low expectations and all). The utter collapse of the Obama presidency will handle the rest. You can write it down.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 12:40AM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

I've always been one to give Palin her due. Its amazing how dim the left bloggers have been to her star power. When she came on the scene, I was damn impressed with her skills, and blogged it, getting the typical reaction. If this wasn't obvious to you, my thinking was at the time, then I pretty much knew who has no sense at all, and whom you could do better ignoring.

Then, when she retired, it also seemed obvious that she was jumping up. But there's actually an idiot blogger out there who blogged she was then toast, to try and point out how wrong I was about her future. Uh huh, sure.

OK, I do think though that her light is gonna fade in the near future. With the GOP gaining control, she's not going to have the vacuum for her noise. And she's probably not going to run. I could be surprised, but I think her teaming up with Beck is not a good move for her, and she's moving in the wrong direction (toward theocon) when she should be moving in the libertarian direction. Just my sense of the other side, we'll see.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-09-09 02:09PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

The real Q is - did Palin help or hurt McCain? 

by vecky 2010-09-09 02:40PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

She probably helped. Her obvious flaw was that she's a bit of a, well, idiot. So in that sense McCain could have done better by selecting a veep that with the same intense base appeal of Sarah Palin but with intellectual heft. Unfortunately that option wasn't available to him. With Palin that election would have been as uneventful as the 1996 contest.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 03:02PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

Helped before she hurt.

It could be argued, and I'd nod, that with the financial meltdown, McCain had no way to win by going along with the bailout, and he had no choice but to go along.

But there's no question that without the meltdown, '08 was going to be a tight toss-up that leaned McCain just prior.

But the other thing here is that Palin doesn't really do policy well. I thought, after seeing her give the RNC convo speech, that they would roll her out doing a energy independence speech and then, a press interview after it about the policy. That instead they went the bio interview route proved to be fatal to her own framing, because she had no control in a hostile environment. That was pretty painful viewing.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-09-09 03:04PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

Which is why i think her "star power" is seriously over-rated. Sure she might be popular among the tabloids, but that's not exactly what the country is looking for. 

What conservatives are looking for is another matter. 

by vecky 2010-09-09 05:38PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

What, pray tell, is the country looking for?

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 05:46PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

Someone with the capability and gravitas to be President and Commander-in-Chief. Palin was always too much about the drama. 

by vecky 2010-09-09 06:28PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

Forgive me for sounding this way but I don't the American people are broadly interested in or knowledgeable enough to distinguish between cool libertarianism and social conservatism. It's not entirely their fault; those two sects of the conservative movement have converged. They are all convinced of the wisdom of deemphasizing the social issues. Sharron Angle doesn't even care about abortion—in the immediate future.

She's absolutely going to run because Sarah Palin, like Obama, has a super-messianic complex. Most people who seriously strive to be president of the United States and devote their lives to achieving that end have some semblance of the grandiosity that makes up the messianic complex. Obama and Palin are those rare mega-exemplars of this. With Obama his complex was nurtured over the course of the campaign. I don't think he truly expected to topple Hillary Clinton at the inception of his endeavor. Sarah Palin, I think, saw the trajectory of the Obama presidency early on and convinced herself that she was Ronald Reagan to his Chocolate Carter. I don't care what anyone says—the minute Republican voters see this hot Christian woman in her tight jeans with her hair down, flipping pancakes in Iowa, they're going to fall absolutely in love with her. The only person who may be able to stop her—or even shame her into not running altogether—is Generalissimo Petraeus. She is a Marine Mom after all.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 03:13PM | 0 recs
RE: On the money

This was supposed to appear under Jerome's post re: Sarah. Weird.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 03:14PM | 0 recs
And if the Dems do manage to save control of Congress...

I Obama lucks out and the GOP doesn't retake the House and/or Senate, I'm sure he'll take the wrong lesson from it. My gut tells me that triangulation/centrism/conservatism will be what they attribute any "success" they may have. 

But, lets be real, the House and maybe the Senate is gone.

by spectator consumer 2010-09-08 11:39PM | 0 recs
RE: And if the Dems do manage to save control of Congress...

The House and the Senate are certainly gone. Any cautious prognostications that say otherwise should remind us of '06. Remember how people were talking up Conrad Burns'--and incumbents like him--money advantage and such? Republicans tend to have killer waves because no one does cultural backlash like the conservative movement.

btw: Barack Obama is a Wall Street puppet. Because he's got substantial majorities in the Congress at the moment, his tendency has been to sell us out while spouting progressive language. The only thing that will change after November will be the rhetoric. In that sense it will be "triangulation" stuff. But the substance will be the absolute same thing. Again, wait till that Catfood thing coughs up whatever sinister thing they're cooking.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-08 11:49PM | 0 recs
RE: And if the Dems do manage to save control of Congress...

A slim victory. Say keep the House with  5 seats, with 52 or 53 seats in the Senate. That would be a hollow victory. Nothing would get done, and it would just mean '12 is very tough to run on anything other than accomplishment.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-09-09 02:12PM | 0 recs
RE: And if the Dems do manage to save control of Congress...

This is gonna be a sharp disagreement between us, brother. I've been with Dick Morris (I know) since December in predicting a loss of both houses of Congress. The overall trend, the discredited Democratic brand, the fact that the American people hate every single one of our "historic" accomplishments and the fury of the Tea Party set are what convinced me of this. John Boehner and the traditional corporate types (the ones reticent about "replace and repeal") would probably like to cooperate with the Wall Street Democrat in the White House but he will be pulled by the strident reactionary breed (Sens. Miller, Angle, Buck, Paul, et al; I don't even want to list any of the incoming House reactionaries because of my faint heart) into all-out obstructionism and investigation. These people aren't going to forget Nancy Pelosi's giddy march through the Tea Party protesters with that gigantic gavel. They're going to do their level best to bring down the Obama administration. The difference between Obama and Bill Clinton is I'm not sure Obama will suddenly look good in comparison. In the cyclical brains of most of the voting public, the failure of Obama has pushed them into genuinely broad agreement with the Republicans.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 02:32PM | 0 recs
RE: And if the Dems do manage to save control of Congress...

 I have been at a 50 seat loss in the House, and 7-8ish in the Senate, since last Nov.

But, there are a lot of blue dog dems running great campaigns in the House-- they could win still. The margin could be much tighter. I'll be pretty firm in expectations by the last week of Oct.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-09-09 03:08PM | 0 recs
The fact that Boehner is even an issue shows how awful Obama is

I mean, Democrats were at the top of the world before Obama came in and mucked it all up.  Write him off and get him of office in 2012 and maybe the Democratic party can somehow be salvaged in 2014. 

by Kent 2010-09-09 01:19AM | 0 recs
RE: The fact that Boehner is even an issue shows how awful Obama is

2014 is too far off. Barack Obama will provide plenty of instructive lessons for President Palin and as a consequence, she may succeed politically. And God help us is if it's General Petraeus who seizes the White House from the clutches of the Nicotine Man.

We have to focus on sending Obama back to Hyde Park and demonstrating that failed left-wing corporatism is not the full extent of what the Democratic Party has to offer. If that fails then we have no other recourse than to pray to God. And even He doesn't exist...

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 09:47AM | 0 recs
Jon Taplin says that the pundits are underestimating Obama

Again.

http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/09/08/let_the_campaign_begin/?ref=fpblg

by Drummond 2010-09-09 11:05AM | 0 recs
RE: Jon Taplin says that the pundits are underestimating Obama

The only reason why folk ever underestimated Barack Obama during the primary was because of Hillary Clinton's hype. There never was any serious reason to doubt a charismatic operator like Obama's ability to weave two natural constituencies--black people and "wine track" voters--together to form a formidable Democratic primary majority. In addition, Hillary Rodham Clinton--in the earliest stages when it counted the most--was an astoundingly uncharismatic and presumptuous woman. (Moreover, she stupidly failed to contest the caucus states because she had this cockamamie idea that she'd wrap everything up by Super Tuesday; her "chief strategist" apparently didn't even know Democrats don't operate by winner-take-all rules.) She inspired enormous hostility in the liberal press and among progressives who remembered the Clintons' cautious and self-serving '90s that begat the compassionate conservatism of George W. Bush.

Presidential elections are contests in which charisma, money, and narrative count for everything. Midterm elections, in a sense, are more substantive because they're almost always a referendum on the president and his economic program. Nothing else matters. The rapturous power of President Obama's romantic eloquence Hallmark-y bromides expired, I think, around the time of health care address to the joint session of Congress last September--and that's being charitable. Nobody wants to hear that tired shit anymore when we're in a badass depression and Republicans are craftily frightening people about illegal aliens and Ground Zero mosques.

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 11:57AM | 0 recs
Obama does a dance--maybe Hollywood is in his future

Now that the GOP take over of the Congress looks very much a possibility, I hope Obama is ready for what lies ahead for him. 

You can bet that all the GOP "plans" to bailout the economy is hogwash and will be forgotten entirely by the day after the election. Should the GOP have the Congress, they will get back to their plan of giving $700 billion in tax cuts (or even more) to the rich 1%.

But none of that is really important to Obama (he's well off but not THAT rich). He's probably thinking as he is prone to do that he can do that asinine idea that he has had for the last 18 months of working together with the GOP Congress. WHAT A CROCK.  Its a guarantee that Boehner / McConnell will bring back Ken Starr and really go after Obama. He should have talked to the Clinton's on many things but I will tell him he really better listen to Bill Clinton about how much money he will need for his legal team as Boehner sets out to IMPEACH him.  Obama best realize NOW that the GOP is going to look under every rock to find something that can be pinned on him. Remember all that tripe about the real estate man who was Obama's buddy from Chicago. I hope Obama is ready for that to really get blown out in the open come January and from now on.   Obama is to blame--he has a destructive ego. He is arrogant to the point where he never seems to recognize that there are Democrats who need help getting elected. More than just coming into a district or state for a few speeches and a short visit.  I am sick of that side of him. All of us remember December of 2008 and the runoff in Georgia between Dem Martin and Rep. Chambliss. Had Obama gone there to help get out the black vote, maybe Martin would have won. Ditto the Al Franken runoff in Minn.--Obama has turned his back on a bunch of good Democrats and he deserves to see Ken Starr on the White House appointments list in early January. He is so bad that a great Dem. like Russ Feingold will probably lose because of him.

All this is certainly welcomed by the Bush family. As they see it, its time for Jebbie Bush to be president.  I am convinced that the giant Bush public relations team will be in full swing with public opinion---GW Bush might even be a Saint by 2012--"Those Guys Are Good". And Karl Rove will have his team of election fixers working full tilt on rigging the Diebold Voting Machine software.

Welcome Obama, Goodbye Obama, you sure need to learn that just because a snake looks harmless--it might be a badass  'rattler.  Maybe the next Democrat president won't play so nice with Republicans.

by hddun2008 2010-09-09 11:49AM | 0 recs
RE: Obama does a dance--maybe Hollywood is in his future

You're absolutely correct about the rehabilitation of Bush. I've been trying to sound the alarm about that right here in these pages

And quite honestly, I think the Obamas are more than aware of where they're ended. They're aloof; they don't seem to care all that much. I mean, how else are we supposed to rationalize Michelle O's regal rebellion, for example?

by Jack Landsman 2010-09-09 06:00PM | 0 recs

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