Patterico's Pontifications

3/30/2010

Piling On the Republicans (Updated)

Filed under: Politics — DRJ @ 6:05 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Jim Treacher says too bad if the Conventional Wisdom says right-wing websites shouldn’t pile on when Republicans make mistakes … because The DC is covering the story about how the RNC entertains at a WestHollywood bondage-themed night club anyway:

“Sorry, rightosphere, but if the GOP is going to be the party of fiscal responsibility, it needs to get a handle on this kind of stuff. If one of our reporters finds a story that might make Republicans look bad, we’re under no obligation to sweep it under the rug. Then we’d be no better than media outlets that try to hide what they know about Democrats. Not that they’d ever do that…

P.S. Not to tell Michael Steele his business, but “I couldn’t have been spending exorbitant amounts of donor money at that bondage-themed nightclub in LA, because I was spending exorbitant amounts of donor money flying back from our winter retreat in Hawaii” might not play as well as he hopes.”

They are also reporting that RNC Chairman Michael Steele wanted to use RNC funds to buy a private jet for his use.

– DRJ

UPDATE: Prof. William Jacobson at Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion is not happy with The Daily Caller:

“… the only story of “substance” broken so far by the Daily Caller was the expense of $2000 by the RNC at a strip club, for which a staffer has been fired.

While this may be a legitimate news issue, it hardly fits the Daily Caller’s mission statement, to balance out the lack of journalistic examination of the Obama administration.

The mainstream media and left-wing blogosphere (including Huffington Post) are all over every move the RNC and Republicans make, while ignoring and covering up any and all possible problems in Democrat land.

Daily Caller may have earned a news cycle by piling on, but it hasn’t earned any respect. From anyone.”

That’s a valid point but this is one of the few times I disagree with Prof. Jacobson about something. Holding Republicans accountable is as important to the future of the GOP as holding Democrats accountable, especially now that the Tea Party movement is watching both parties.

97 Responses to “Piling On the Republicans (Updated)”

  1. I concur — sunlight is the best disinfectant.

    And who does Michael Steele think he is … a Kennedy?

    Tragic Christian (28a938)

  2. All well and good . . . as long as what is being reported is the truth, minus any hyperbole or exaggeration.

    Icy Texan (28de63)

  3. it looks like a neat place and it also looks like they maybe got out of there pretty reasonably.

    happyfeet (71f6cb)

  4. but I’d rather see Team R pile on Princess Lindsey and his bondage-themed climate bill than get in a twist about some bar tab really

    happyfeet (71f6cb)

  5. VOYEUR’s signature cocktail menu includes sugar–free, all organic creations including watermelon jalapeno, blueberry mint and cucumber olive shots. Guests will enjoy simple, small-bite hors d’oeuvres from Chef Micah Wexler (formerly from Craft), including smoked salmon and cucumber tea sandwiches, prime beef sliders and a signature crispy shrimp cocktail.*

    Craft is my favorite one here in LA so far.

    I think this place is much more classy than the dirty socialist media would have us believe. Much much more.

    happyfeet (71f6cb)

  6. I just want to know where my velvet handcuffs went…

    Now the Democrats can say the Republicans got spanked in 2010

    Steve G (7d4c78)

  7. The “wilderness” years have calendars full of landscapes.

    DCSCA (9d1bb3)

  8. It’s almost a shame they even brought up Voyeur (and thus, the sex scandal that isn’t). The real problem is that Steele is really not focused on running a tight efficient ship.

    Many of the things he does don’t seem wise or clever or helpful. A real leader would be able to shape some kind of strategy out of the amazing fall the democrats have taken in the public eye. Steele’s staff send the worn out email every week and go off to junkets.

    Say what you will about Howard Dean, but he was a real leader and he had ideas about strategy, organization, and vision. He led the democrats, despite many complainers, through a 50 state strategy that built up, a Secretary of State strategy that helps control the ballot box, and simply running a maneuverable effort.

    I’m amazed he didn’t wind up in the cabinet, but the only real reason is that Obama has a hard time being upstaged by real leaders.

    Steele’s doing a terrible job, and some think we are married to him by racial politics (I really don’t care about that issue, or anyone’s race). This is a gift, because it will focus us on Steele’s personal enrichment at the expense of his obligations. I sure hope we get Mitt Romney into that job, but that’s a ludicrous pipe dream.

    dustin (b54cdc)

  9. Paul Ryan needs to take over Mr. Steele’s job, or someone very much like him

    happyfeet (71f6cb)

  10. happyfeet – Their menu sounds great.

    JD (9d8cb8)

  11. Republican violence and Republican immorality are fighting to see which will be this election’s Larry Craig/ Mark Foley.

    My money’s on the violence, but I’m willing to be surprised.

    Maybe immorality can score the hat trick.

    snips (6a0094)

  12. Such a rock solid intellectual, is Andrew!

    Eric Blair (7d5c97)

  13. Hey snips, seriously, what did the Jews do to you? You never answer the important questions.

    Ag80 (f67beb)

  14. Paul Ryan needs to take over Mr. Steele’s job, or someone very much like him

    Comment by happyfeet

    I sorely would like that. I’m really not worked up about some idiot staffer using the credit card on something stupid. Happens in every organization of any size.

    But Steele’s heart just isn’t in it.

    Appearing on Sean Hannity’s nationally syndicated show the same day his new book, “Right Now,” hit store shelves, Steele said the GOP is set for “nice pick-ups” in the House. But, he said, at the moment there aren’t enough candidates to take out enough Dems.

    “I can’t give a number [of seats the GOP will win] yet, because like I said, we’re just now beginning to look at the races,” Steele said. Asked if GOPers will take back the House, Steele confessed: “Not this year.” [...] “If we do that, are we ready?”

    I know he backed off those comments, but this is our head cheerleader? He’s too busy selling his book to be ready to win the House back? He’s a jerk. Plain and simple.

    dustin (b54cdc)

  15. the joint looks like just another over hyped, over priced, over rated LA flash in the pan…. in a year or two it will me something else just as unremarkable…..if they wanted to play “high-roller” they should have gone to the Pacific Dining Car and asked for their own area. better food, better booze and much higher class. instead, they just went out and acted like dems.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  16. He said they were “just now beginning to look at the races”? Really?? Because I thought the Dems have been rigorously analyzing those races way back when they were weighing out whether the YES vote was worth the risk of losing their seats! Great of Steele to give the impression the GOP is a day late and dollar short.

    Paul Ryan is really needed on the front lines, not in the head PR-cheerleader position. That would be a waste of some serious brain power.

    He’s a jerk. Plain and simple.

    Heh. I was going to warn you, Dustin, to watch that racism – but then I remembered that it only counts if there’s a D after the name…so you’re off the hook.

    Dana (1e5ad4)

  17. Ah yes, Snips.

    Yet another troll spewing non sequiturs as profound truth.

    Yawn

    Icy Texan (28de63)

  18. Paul Ryan is really needed on the front lines, not in the head PR-cheerleader position. That would be a waste of some serious brain power.

    That is a good point, but we really need someone like that. I would personally like Mitt Romney, because we really need to get the ship righted (this probably comes across as a scheme to keep him out of the White House, but I don’t think he stands a chance there anyway). Steele fired a lot of people from the RNC who had nothing to do with the lost elections. Financial people, staff people. He had to repay a lot of crony favors.

    I’d be delighted if some CEO took over, with no political record at all. Or Karl Rove. Really, I’ve got no specific list. I want someone who can lead instead of sell their book. Hell, just shut the operation down if you’re going to run it the way Steele is running it.

    dustin (b54cdc)

  19. “I want someone who can lead instead of sell their book. ”

    He can’t even do that.

    His book’s at 108,000 on Amazon’s bestseller list.

    snips (6a0094)

  20. And Pelosi’s book?

    True, Bill Ayres’ book did pretty well.

    Eric Blair (ea0564)

  21. Hey, I wonder if the percentage scores will go up 4 or 5 percent, snips? I mean, since you like statistics and all.

    Eric Blair (ea0564)

  22. Yeah, I should quit picking on snips. I mean, that foolishness yesterday claiming that Obama had “rock solid” support, coupled with his statement that Joe Biden is a smart guy?

    You have to feel sorry for snips. Truly.

    Eric Blair (ea0564)

  23. Oops. I forgot to leave a comment noting that I updated the post. It was about 30 minutes ago, I think.

    DRJ (daa62a)

  24. I agree completely, DRJ. If something is wrong one way, it is wrong the other.

    One of the problems with our current system is the “…but that’s different…” nonsense.

    Eric Blair (ea0564)

  25. There needs to be a wholesale house-cleaning at the RNC:
    Chairman, Committee, and Staff – replace them all!
    This is just the sort of thing that will drive the TEA Party voters towards third-party candidates who will only insure the re-election of Dems.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a2cec7)

  26. Daily Caller is a joke. Tucker Carlson seems to want to be TOO much like HuffPo, complete with endless GOP bashing. I like Treacher, and I know he has to defend the actions of his boss, but the site as a whole, so fair, is an epic fail. I totally agree with Jacobson.

    East Coast Chris (ded5f2)

  27. 23,000 soldiers died in Normany before the Army swallowed their pride and sent George ashore…

    An iron curtain went down over Europe because we refused gasoline to the third army in September so our allies could “catch up” and we and the result was that Patton Could have been in Warsaw by November and their might not been a cold war after all

    Oh well, glad to see we are not buying a plane so a chairmen, who actually goes and takes the fight to the street can spend hours upon hours upon hours in airports wasting time – because its important

    EricPWJohnson (924880)

  28. Michael Steele is not George Patton. He is George McClellan.

    nk (db4a41)

  29. Its worth tearing down those who spend money traveling constantly giving speeches whipping up resistance – after all – its IMPORTANT to the DEMOCRATS that we hold people accountable

    Yep, like Janet Schakowskys husband who has served prison time for Acornesque crimes is back to his old games building another political machine in Chicago – but HEY! we need to worry about a strip club expense, a fired staffer, taking private jets (news flash – its cheaper than business class most of the time)

    And all private cabs are called Limosines – its a marketing thing

    Lets make a new resolution – that all RNC chairmen must wait hours in airports, fly coach, take the bus and travel by bycycle –

    there problem fixed….

    EricPWJohnson (924880)

  30. It’s probably true that The Daily Caller hasn’t yet fulfilled its mission to be a conservative Huffington Post, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t merit in exposing GOP problems. And I guess I view Steele the way nk does. I don’t think Steele is very effective so I don’t see any benefit in paying so he can travel faster.

    DRJ (daa62a)

  31. I like Treacher, and I know he has to defend the actions of his boss

    No, actually, I don’t have to.

    Jim Treacher (d3d761)

  32. Private jets are cheaper than business class plane travel most of the time?

    Really? Maybe in some very rare occasion is this true, but most of the time?

    The limousines were just private cabs? Like the kind I take for $10?

    I think EPWJ has this quite wrong. I’m not asking the RNC to travel by bicycle. Just handle themselves like they are fiscally conservative. A lot of major donors are pissed off at what they perceive as ridiculously fancy travel. Politico had a story about it, and I won’t link because Politico sucks, but it named names.

    This isn’t just about the Voyeur club. That’s the RNC spin. It is about how the RNC is not performing well right now. This is one of many examples. And it’s the lame scapegoating of the lowly staffer (she’s barely an adult and this isn’t just her fault).

    I loath moral relativism. People bringing up ‘acornesque’ crimes and Chicago’s political machine are missing the point. Ignoring this story because the democrats do bad stuff? That’s sick.

    The kinds of donors who are pleased by this kind of crap are going to want to expand government to get a return on investment. The patriotic donors do not expect to be given AAA treatment, and in fact are turned off by it.

    EPWJ claims Steele takes the fight to the street, but I know better. He’s too busy selling his books and charging for speeches to take the fight to the street, and he’s the reason the organization’s in disarray.

    I was annoyed that the Daily Caller implied Steele was at the club, but they have cleared that up and proved they repeatedly tried to interview Steele and others for details about these expenses and were denied information. That’s really the RNC’s fault.

    Daily Caller is doing a good job from my perspective, but I don’t see their job as helping the GOP win elections by leaving good material for the MSM to cover.

    I am not going to accept this RNC behavior. The cat is out of the bag, and I’m not a Republican if this is what the party is about. I don’t really give a shit what letter is next to someone’s name. I want people who are good leaders, unlike Steele, who value conservatism, unlike Scozzafava, and are honest about their own side’s problems. The GOP really has to choose between EPWJ and me, with all due respect to him.

    This kind of crap makes clear that Obama, Pelosi, and Reid was only worse by degree. I am confident we can win elections without clowning around in Hawaii promising earmarks to assholes for some donations.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  33. And where have the detailed exposes been of Princess Nancy and flying booze hall? Not one word in the same media that is flogging the GOP incident. Note, the GOP aide wasn’t a leader and got canned. Pelosi keeps flying her cronys and the booze keeps flowing, and her tab is more than $2K per flight.

    PCD (1a283e)

  34. PCD, that’s a great story too. I don’t think it’s a legitimate reaction this this story, except that democrats crowing about it are living in a dream world.

    Will the Daily Caller expose democrat operations the way Breitbart does? Let’s hope so while appreciating the fact that they are making the RNC a better organization with a little sunlight.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  35. Dustin,

    Than business class in many cases – yes – when you add in the time and expense they rent from 1000 to 5000 dollars an hour depending upon the equipment, destination etc.

    Sure we dont like Steele :) , but he is an effective, quite effective leader who is working towards the ultimate goal – he wasnt a clown like Haley Babour, whose only method of party building was appearences on Fox News.

    I’m not bringing up Chicago’s political machine for moral relativeism, its a real threat Schakowskys political machine isnt just Chicago, it stretches from Indiana, Ohio, to Wisconsin. These are critical and crucial states.

    But thats okay that Babour HAD a private airplane, lets make Steele sit in coach, ride bikes, and generally treat those that are entrusted with rebuilding the faith

    EricPWJohnson (924880)

  36. NK

    George was considered the best Union General by the confederates, many top Civil War Historians credit McCellan with saving the Union as Britain was sure to intervene had Lee sacked Washington.

    With a green army of drafted recruits McCellan not only made an offensive that sapped much of Lee’s rifle strength against Richmond, he stopped them at the Sharpsburg in the bloodiest day in American history, this is after the professional army had been routed twice by lee in the 9 months previously.

    Like the Daily Caller, Lincoln rashly, unwisely at the most crucial time in American history, criticised his own and let McClellan go. Lincoln let his anger with the confederates actions cause him to blame his generals, the first Union general to actually defeat the Confederates in Battle.

    His replacement then slaughtered at Fredricksburg the core of those that McClellan trained dooming the war to last three more years instead of coming to a political solution within months if not weeks.

    Thanks for bringing McClellan up!

    EricPWJohnson (924880)

  37. “Prof. William Jacobson at Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion is not happy with The Daily Caller:”

    This is particularly amusing.

    imdw (017d51)

  38. They should put Palin in charge of the RNC and she can put their stuff on ebay. And build a new arena.

    imdw (017d51)

  39. Yes we know about Robert Creamer, and his strategy for ‘Transforming America’ thanks to Glenn Beck,now it does seem like a hit job, go to pg 1781 of a FEC report, focus on Steele with Brown and Moyer(sic) were the officials involved. There does seem that there was an undue drawdown of funds, without that much to show for it, and lets not forget the 900K to Dede Scozzafava,

    ian cormac (349188)

  40. “There does seem that there was an undue drawdown of funds, without that much to show for it, and lets not forget the 900K to Dede Scozzafava,”

    That would have helped Boehner in his ‘hell no you can’t’ moment. Good move.

    imdw (c5488f)

  41. Still think this a Republican thing versus a Democrat thing?

    Sounds like two kids fighting – “he hit me first.”

    The Federal Government is chock full of corrupt people. Both parties have plenty of bad eggs. And you focus on one or the other while both rob you blind. All the while the LSM and FOX gin up the rhetoric.

    Corwin (ea9428)

  42. Mmm, I will say several things about this.

    First, jacobson is, in his limited sense, right. Carlson said their goal was to get democrats, not eat their own.

    But patterico is right to say that it does republicans no favors to give them a free pass.

    But on the third hand, do you really think that there is less waste in the dems? my feeling is that this is one of those situations where dems do this sort of crud all the time but because its got salacious sexual issues involved the dems pretend that republicans are the only bad actors under the theory that it is hypocritical. republicans going to a lesbian bondage strip club is supposed to be news, but not democrats. When democrats do that, the theory goes, its dog bites man, aka not a story.

    So my gut feeling is that this is ultimately an unfair story, where republicans are supposed to be as pristine as new fallen snow, and dems are given a free pass. That’s not to say that this expense is justified. it is not. But i do find it annoying that a site dedicated to balancing things out seems to be joining in on something that smells unfair and disproportionate.

    A.W. (e7d72e)

  43. the fact they focused the laser on Steele, when clearly he wasn’t at fault, in this instance, indicates there was a grudge involved, not unlike
    the wardrobe issue, during the campaign, that was dredged up, and misrepresented to use as as issue against Palin. And true the party of Rielle Hunter’s
    daddy, and the prospective Client No 9, really shouldn’t get a pass

    ian cormac (349188)

  44. “But on the third hand, do you really think that there is less waste in the dems?”

    The source for this was a public filing by the RNC. Anyone can look at the one from the DNC.

    imdw (e57370)

  45. imdw

    yeah, assuming they were honest in the first place. i mean right now Edwards is close to being indicted for funnelling money to his babymomma.

    A.W. (e7d72e)

  46. Better get retracto on it, Steele didn’t authorize it, he wasn’t at the club, there are other issues
    that proved to be true, in terms of expenses, but they weren’t ‘sexy’ enough to really highlight,

    ian cormac (349188)

  47. The underlying issue is with Steele’s overall attitude regarding his job’s performance requirements – if he wasn’t already suspect in that area, this story may never have seen the light of day.

    Dmac (21311c)

  48. I sort of have mixed feelings about this one.

    On the one hand, I have no problem with people going to bondage clubs, if that’s what they enjoy, and think that a lot of the outrage about this has to do with people’s discomfort with bondage clubs.

    On the other hand: dude, you don’t pay for the trip to the bondage club with your employer’s money. That would get me fired; it’s a totally irresponsible and stupid thing to do.

    [Note that i'm assuming that the reports that it's a bondage club are true. I don't care enough to find out; I'm not donating to the Republican party, so it's not my money at issue. I'm just watching the story from the sidelines and being kind of uncomfortable with it, because I think most people are reacting to "bondage club! icky eew!"]

    aphrael (73ebe9)

  49. Dustin: I have several times ended up riding in a limo at corporate expense because the corporate travel department looked at the options for transporting a group of employees and found that the limo was cheaper than the alternatives.

    I never looked at the finances – I was a software engineer, not a financial guy, and at the end of the day for this sort of thing I did what corporate told me to do – so I don’t know if they were right. But I kind of assume it’s the sort of thing they wouldn’t blow, since none of them were in the limo, either.

    aphrael (73ebe9)

  50. When democrats do that, the theory goes, its dog bites man, aka not a story.

    For me, it depends. When an individual – say, Eliot Spitzer – who is preachy about his moral superiority, and who makes an issue of other people’s sex lives, does it, then it’s a story. If, for example, Rick Santorum showed up at a bondage club? It’s news.

    If, on the other hand, someone who isn’t preachy about his moral superiority, and who doesn’t really make an issue of other people’s sex lives, does it, then I don’t care. Richard Cheney in a bondage club? Ok, it’s curious and kinda amusing to think about, but it’s none of my business and it shouldn’t be an issue.

    I’m certainly not claiming that the media adhere to this standard, but I think there’s an element of it – the difference is that many media outlets make the unfair presumption that “Republican” equals “preachy about moral superiority and makes an issue of other people’s sex lives.”

    they should stop doing that.

    but the general principle i’m outlining is, I think, a valid one.

    aphrael (73ebe9)

  51. Dustin: I have several times ended up riding in a limo at corporate expense because the corporate travel department looked at the options for transporting a group of employees and found that the limo was cheaper than the alternatives.

    (Aphrael)

    Of course, this doesn’t conflict with what I’ve said, or the need for people to scrutinize these expenses. You’re referring to a Towncar style service, probably, which I’ve used too a couple of times and is a valid expense on many occasions. Let’s go ahead and compare this to use in the past, see if it’s valid. As the recent financial people for RNC and many major donors are saying spending is out of control, and RNC is attacking the messenger without providing details about its spending, I think it’s fair to say they are losing this argument at this point.

    But of course, it’s possible for an occasional private jet or occasional limo to be totally great use of money. Strange that is wasn’t necessary nearly as much in years past, if the complaints are valid (And if people are lying about that, we should know about that too).

    There’s more to it, of course. Steele said the Republicans may not be ready to lead, and has failed to inspire the right or take advantage or plan anything impressive. IMDW mocks Palin’s famous spending thrift, but she has that and has the much more impressive ability to lead. She’s doing more with her lame facebook page than Steele is doing with an entire political party.

    If Steele were some hot shot with great ability to bring in donors, organize races, point out candidates, and shape the narratives, few would care if he lavishes crap on himself and his staff follow his lead (I still would).

    Another point: it’s not contradicting a mission of scrutinizing democrats to also scrutinize massive problems on the right. Steele has been a constant massive problem, as has the leadership of many other GOP committees. I wouldn’t bother with Daily Caller’s criticism of the left and democrats (of which there is a fair amount, btw), if they were strictly partisan.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  52. Comment by Dustin — 3/31/2010 @ 3:13 am

    Dustin, since you’re one of those who throws good people in the trash at the first sign of bad press, I’m going to ask you the same question I asked DRJ not too long ago. And it is this: Who will stand behind YOU when you say or do something that represents the GOP/Conservative Movement that gets bad press? Are you going to say “That’s the breaks”, or are you going to use your best Blanche DuBois routine when everyone throws YOU in the trash?

    DRJ never provided a satisfactory answer to this. You’d gain a lot of goodwill by giving an honest answer to my question.

    Brad S (9f6740)

  53. Just to let you know, that’s my comment up there.

    Brad S (9f6740)

  54. Dustin,

    Palin has 1,512,077 fans on her “lame” Facebook page.

    Dana (1e5ad4)

  55. “When an individual – say, Eliot Spitzer – who is preachy about his moral superiority…”

    At this point I think it’s safe to assume that any public figure who is preachy about their moral superiority is a superfreak.

    snips (6a0094)

  56. Brad, I don’t throw good people in the trash at the first sign of bad press. I’ve been irritated with Steele for many months now, because he’s been hawking his book and charging speaking fees, instead of meeting the expectations of his job.

    He also fired a lot of good people just to install his own set. A lot of these folks were instrumental in a very money effective organization, and had nothing to do with the GOP’s problems in 2008 and 2006. In fact, I’d say Steele is the kind of person to throw good people in the trash, and that’s part of why I’m not standing behind him (though at this point, it’s been so many months of constant reminders that Steele is not doing his job).

    No one is going to throw me in the trash, Brad, except people who can’t handle me saying what I mean. I admit my mistakes when I make them, and correct course as best as I can. I certainly don’t abandon people on the right when they get a single bad story.

    I’m not surprised DRJ hasn’t satisfied you on this issue, because I think you are asking for something most honest people are unable to give you. Feel free to hate my guts, though. I’m still a committed member of the GOP, who has worked many elections very hard and has earned my right to ask for better leadership in this CRITICAL period.

    That’s my honest answer.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  57. Comment by imdw — 3/31/2010 @ 5:44 am

    Check the vote count again. Someone else would’ve voted in Bill Owens’ place had DeDe beaten him.

    Brad S (9f6740)

  58. Also, didn’t Steele completely screw over Erik Brown and that young lady staffer instantly? Erik’s a sunday school teacher who didn’t want to go to that club, but agreed to pay for it when someone’s credit card was declined (at the promise of an expensed payment). He had a business and a reputation that are destroyed because of Steele.

    Is Brad S being coherent here? Steele is far more guilty of his ‘abandon people at the first sign of trouble’ than I am. I’ve had months to be angry at Steele. If you haven’t heard many calling for him to be replaced for a long time now, you haven’t been paying attention.

    Brad S said I’d earn a lot of ‘good will’ with him for explaining ‘who would stand behind [me] when I get the GOP some bad press’. Why would that earn me good will? People have stood behind me for far worse, but I don’t see how naming them makes any difference. I have friends who would let me get away with murder… is that a reason to respect my criticism of Steele, or is Brad just freaking out?

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  59. Oh, dear Lord. Snips, did you actually write:

    “…who is preachy about their moral superiority is a superfreak…”

    Well, we have a new name for you.

    I don’t think this person even remembers what they post! Hilarious!

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  60. So Dustin, I take it from your comments that you’ve had months to be angry @ Steele. This means, of course, that you lost what little patience you had with him all that time, and have been wanting to throw him in the garbage all that time. And you bring up Erik Brown and the young staffer solely to try and defend your “in the toilet you go, RINO!” mentality.

    Again, who’s going to defend YOU?

    Brad S (9f6740)

  61. Dustin,

    Palin has 1,512,077 fans on her “lame” Facebook page.

    Comment by Dana

    And I’m one of them. But it’s just a simple webpage, and the fact is, Steele has a lot more to work with and is accomplishing far less. Palin is setting up candidates, shaping the message, reacting to Obama, and all with some facebook page (And I think facebook pages are pretty damn lame as a basic law of the internet, despite her effective use of hers).

    Brad S, the vote margin was 3 ahead for the Health Care Bill. Jefferson said he would have voted No except if the margin was more than 1. I know this is retarded, and there’s no reason to trust him, but that’s the basis for the claim that Owens winning was enough to change the outcome of that weekend vote. Strange story.

    [note: released from moderation. --Stashiu]

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  62. So Dustin, I take it from your comments that you’ve had months to be angry @ Steele. This means, of course, that you lost what little patience you had with him all that time, and have been wanting to throw him in the garbage all that time. And you bring up Erik Brown and the young staffer solely to try and defend your “in the toilet you go, RINO!” mentality.

    Again, who’s going to defend YOU?

    Comment by Brad S

    I brought it up because if you apply your own standard, it means you should also be upset with Steele. As I’ve said many times, the club itself is a symptom of loose spending, but isolated examples of this happen everywhere and don’t justify the outrage.

    ‘been wanting to throw him in the garbage the whole time’. I’ve been wanting good leadership in this crucial period the entire time, but I don’t really care about Steele’s reputation or career being harmed somehow. I just see that this isn’t the place for him. He’s a terrible leader and not selfless enough for this.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  63. By the way, Brad, I have you an honest answer, so I expect to be feeling the good will any minute now.

    To be more clear, I don’t expect a political party to allow me to run it like Steele’s run the RNC.

    Again, who’s going to defend YOU?

    I already answered this question. You don’t seem to want to answer my points, though. I guess it’s easier to pretend your question has some logical relationship with this topic, and also pretend I haven’t answered it.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  64. Lets be real. Does anyone really believe that some form of this story would not have come out some how some way even if Tucker had not broken it first? I think in the long run the R party and the right leaning media looks better and is stronger because the issue did come out there rather than through a gossip column or a lefty blog. Geez have you people ever seen a secret stay secret in Washington?

    And Treacher, if you’re still reading the comments on this thread I think DC appeals to, and reaches, a younger hipper Republican and Libertarian audience than most other right leaning blogs and that is a really good thing. The headlines and content have personality. And you and Labash are usually very funny while often making serious and important underlying points.

    elissa (0b5e29)

  65. Aphrael

    > but the general principle i’m outlining is, I think, a valid one.

    I couldn’t disagree more. Elliot Spitzer sleeping with a prostitute is always a problem, so long as he is in the public eye.

    I don’t know why we have come to believe that hypocrisy is the worst sin. My best explanation is that we have become such moral relativists that we are not willing to condemn a person according to our own moral code, but instead according to theirs, only. But while hypocrisy avoids the messy step of setting moral standards of your own, I do not believe it is the worst sin.

    Let me take an extreme example. Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson was a massive hypocrite, preaching against slavery while keeping slaves.

    But does that make him worse than the unapologetic slaveholder? I don’t think so. At least he didn’t tell people it was a good thing. At least when he wrote the declaration of independence, he wrote words so clearly condemning slavery that it probably set it on the ultimate course to destruction. Jefferson was a hypocrite, but that hypocrisy was what saved him from just being another evil slaveholder. Obviously I would have preferred him to be a consistent advocate and practitioner of freedom, but if the option is to be a hypocritical advocate of freedom, or a non hypocritical advocate of slavery, clearly being hypocritical is the way to go.

    Spitzer was engaged in criminal conduct. He was the attorney general and then the governor of a state. He put himself in a position where he could be blackmailed, and he harmed those who loved him, particularly his wife. His behavior was contemptible independent of whether he himself condemned that conduct in others.

    I will add that his behavior led directly to Patterson becoming governor, so there is another reason to despise him.

    Hypocrisy can matter in certain contexts obviously. When thousands of officials fly in private jets to a climate change summit, it is relevant, but not so much because they are contradicting themselves as it suggest they don’t really believe in man-caused climate change, or at least it is not half the emergency they hold it out to be. And we might be able to say that in other situations, although I am always hesitant to question a person’s sincerity in sexual morality because they couldn’t live up to it, just as I am hesitant to question a person who says we should eat healthy, but gives in to a craving for pizza.

    A.W. (e7d72e)

  66. AW, of course, knows that when Eliot has a secret prostitute, that he can easily be comprimised.

    This is how Chicago works. Everyone has a stake in everyone else’s scandals.

    This isn’t nearly what Steele’s problem is. A few idiots expensing a party at an elitist version of Hooters is not the problem, here. I thinkSteele’s an honest man who isn’t blackmailable, but is ineffective.

    Still, I wonder what Obama’s old cocaine dealer could get if he threatened to write a book.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  67. Thanks, Elissa! I’ll let Labash know he finally got a compliment.

    Jim Treacher (43a6fc)

  68. Problem is that the prostitutes are largely the MSM, right Mr. Treacher, or has the WaPost reformed and fired the people who lied about you?

    PCD (1d8b6d)

  69. Dustin,

    > This isn’t nearly what Steele’s problem is

    I think I was unintentionally implying I thought that was the problem. First, its not Steele’s personal fault. And I 100% agree that Steele’s real problem isn’t that some staffer paid to see boobs, but the fact he is himself a giant boob.

    I was just trying to say that how I feel about a person going to a strip club is not dependant on whether they have condemned the practice. If this expense showed up on the DNC accounts, I would… not really care, either. And the only extent to which I would get outraged would be the waste aspect of it. But again $2000? Well, I guess its a lot for a strip club visit, but in the scheme of things, if the party in power only wasted $2,000 that would be a massive improvement.

    And btw, don’t take that as me being 100% cool with visiting those kinds of places so much as me feeling we just have to let some immoral crap go.

    A.W. (e7d72e)

  70. jim

    btw, while i am critical of your site right now, see above, i will say in general i actually like the site. and i liked you back into the “mother, may i sleep with…” days.

    also, how is the knee doing? did the tools at state ever at least say, gee sorry about that?

    A.W. (e7d72e)

  71. AW, I thought you were pretty clear, actually.

    There’s the issue of sex scandals, and there’s the issue of Steele’s terrible leadership. They are almost completely unrelated.

    Eliot would have been just fine in Illinois, and also separately (yet relevant) I’m pretty disgusted by those on the right who want to emulate the MSM’s bury-anything-bad-for-our-side.

    William Jacobson says that the Daily Caller is a failure, despite this being a legit story, and they earn no respect from anyone. What an idiot. Who does he think he is, to tell news sources not to report legit news?

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  72. A.W-

    My reading of aphrael was that he was describing how things work in the US today, not necessarily how things should work or what be morally right.

    To that extent, I agree with him. Obama having used cocaine in his youth was no big deal to many people voting for him, while many of the same people would have made a big fuss if something was uncovered about McCain or Palin.

    Is it hypocrisy? Absolutely. Is it admirable? Absolutely not. Is it the reality of what stories get traction in the press? Yes, for “they” decide what the news is.

    MD in Philly (59a3ad)

  73. Dustin

    > Who does he think he is, to tell news sources not to report legit news?

    Well, i have said for years that I wouldn’t be half as annoyed with the liberal media if they would just admit it and stop pretending they are neutral. so i don’t have an objection to a media outlet saying, “look, we are not fair, we are biased and you can either like it or leave it.”

    And Tucker Carlson did seem to say he didn’t want to tell both sides of the story. But Jacobson wants to hold him to it like a contract or something, and i don’t agree with that. So i am not opposed to all negative reporting on republicans.

    my thing is i think its holding the republicans to a much higher standard than dems. I think the story is 1) small potatoes no matter what, and 2) holding republicans to a much higher standard than dems.

    A.W. (e7d72e)

  74. Yep, I don’t mind that Daily Caller is biased to the right (And it clearly is). They are upfront about it. That doesn’t mean that have to be purely exclusively serving Michael Steele’s spin on everything.

    And it’s not like Huffpo doesn’t occasionally report things that are bad for Democrats.

    The caterwauling that Tucker would dare bring this up is damn embarrassing.

    I disagree that this is holding the RNC to a higher standard that the democrats. While the democrats have plenty of scandal, Howard Dean wrote the book on how to run a national party effectively. They didn’t blow it. Their 50 state strategy, their SecStates program, their messaging, their serious approach to elections… that was effective.

    The democrats have not always been that effective, but they are today. Obama’s operation managed to organize protests over Michigan delegates and corner Bush on the bailout. From a strictly tactical POV, the democrats did a damn good job in the areas Steele is failing (though Steele didn’t run the effort in 2008, I realize).

    This is a lot like criticizing the coach of your favorite football team. It is actually a form of bias favoring that football team to focus on that issue.

    Now, the democrats are full of scandals of the normal variety, and the Daily Caller seems to be discussing that too. And they ought to, or they really do fail.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  75. Well maybe if they had gotten it right, which they still haven’t, some high poobah in the GOP, not Steele, not Meyers, not Brown, authorized this transaction, Steele was nowhere near the place. This and Cornyn’s move not to move toward repeal
    are just ‘unforced errors’

    ian cormac (349188)

  76. ian, they asked Steele and the RNC for answers several times. Steele was nowhere near the place because he was burning cash on a party in Hawaii, but Steele was asked for several interviews and refused.

    How are they supposed to ‘get it right’, when the RNC is covering it up? Seems like blaming the highest person aware of the problem, when the problem is being covered up, is as close to getting it right as possible. This is totally Steele’s fault, since the problem is the lack of leadership and control over spending, and not the sex scandal that isn’t.

    What does this have to do with Cornyn and Obamacare? Nothing. If a journalist has a legit story and reports it, that’s no error.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  77. “That’s a valid point but this is one of the few times I disagree with Prof. Jacobson about something. Holding Republicans accountable is as important to the future of the GOP as holding Democrats accountable, especially now that the Tea Party movement is watching both parties”

    I think it’s hardly ever a valid point. If it’s newsworthy, it (whatever “it” is) should be objectively reported regardless of whose ox is gored or who is getting the benefit of a positive bit of reporting. Of course, being objective does not preclude putting news in proper context.

    Ira (28a423)

  78. Dustin – a couple of points …

    “As I’ve said many times, the club itself is a symptom of loose spending, …” – given the nature of the establishment, it would seem, rather, to have been more restrained spending …

    “Howard Dean wrote the book on how to run a national party effectively” – I haven’t researched it yet, but I have to wonder how much of Dean’s success was a result of learning from what Newt Gingrich did that got the GOP back in control of the House of Representatives after how many decades of being the minority party there ?

    With that said, isn’t it time for “Contract With America II” – starting with the same beginnings – that federal legislators shall be subject to the same laws as the rest of us (which, if I recall correctly, was Speaker Gingrich’s HR 1) … and continuing with at least a moratorium on earmarks for *any* reason … and going on to a commitment to Tort Reform (“Loser Pays”?) …

    Alasdair (e7cb73)

  79. I am on the email list of Legal Insurrection and am sorely disappointed in Professor Jacobson’s comments.

    L.N. Smithee (0931d2)

  80. Alasdair, of course Howard Dean did not innovate everything that made him a great party leader.

    That’s a major aspect of being a great leader. I agree with you strongly: we need some kind of major banner under which the GOP sells itself and reforms itself. Steele is sending out those emails asking for money (or rather, his staff is), but he’s more focused on his awesome lifestyle, selling his book, making speaker’s fees, and other things that are simply not appropriate activities for the leader of the party right now.

    I don’t begrudge the man getting rich and selling stuff. But the party leader is supposed to focus on the party.

    I think the message the RNC needs is that it is not asking the TEA party to join the GOP because the GOP is joining the TEA party and making sustainable spending the top priority, replacing its chairman with a TEA partier, and seeking candidates of like mind. Many of your points, such as legislators being subjected to their own laws, fit in very well with this message.

    Anyway, while Howard Dean is a raving lunatic, that passion was brilliantly directed in getting the democrats all kinds of power.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  81. Howard Dean???
    Perhaps what the RNC needs for leadership is…….
    Sarah Palin?

    The base of the Party supports her, and (for the most part) so do those that gather under the banner of the TEA Party.
    Plus, it would put her into the leadership role that could undo some of the damage that was inflicted upon her by the Dems in Alaska.
    You know, after Howard performed his great melt-down in IA-04, who among us would have thought that he would be able to guide the DNC back into relevance?

    The GOP could do worse, and has.

    AD - RtR/OS! (6f84de)

  82. “The base of the Party supports her, and (for the most part) so do those that gather under the banner of the TEA Party.”

    I proposed this several comments ago. Make sure you have a good contract though.

    imdw (89ba95)

  83. “Howard Dean???”

    Hey, I didn’t say I liked the guy. :)

    I would be happy with Palin chairing the party. Despite what the trolls say, she is willing to take tremendous flack and not quit. That governor resignation is a great testament to her character, though I realize the left doesn’t agree.

    She has experience taking retarded expenses and making things a little more sane. I think Mitt Romney is a more skilled money getter, and he’s fixed broken crap before. Since both of them are running for president, I guess they are out, but I’d be happy with either, or both.

    Another idea is to take an effective CEO with little political ambition.

    [note: released from moderation. --Stashiu]

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  84. Yes, but you were being sarcastic (eBay comment, et al).
    I think it would be a serious move, made for serious reasons, to convince serious people -
    such as the major donors that Steele has chased away.

    BTW, did you see the new, daily, Gallup numbers?
    Obama at 50% DISAPPROVAL!

    Just makes my little heart flutter.

    AD - RtR/OS! (6f84de)

  85. “Yes, but you were being sarcastic (eBay comment, et al).”

    No I seriously think she should get on the RNC, ebay its shit, and then build a hockey arena.

    “BTW, did you see the new, daily, Gallup numbers?
    Obama at 50% DISAPPROVAL!”

    Maybe you mean something else, but looking at today’s numbers at gallup.com I see a 50% approval (up 2) and a 43% disapproval (down 1).

    [note: released from moderation. --Stashiu]

    imdw (6eb217)

  86. IMDEEDOUBLEDOOO continues to whistle past the graveyard of the Democrats’ 2010/2012 prospects.

    GeneralMalaise (c1b78b)

  87. No, GM. He is just trying to emulate his buddy snips, with the funny business about the “rock solid” support that the President commands.

    I don’t think these people understand polls.

    They just understand “D.”

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  88. I submit there’s never been a pair of weaker sucks than Ms. Snips and IMDEEDOUBLEDOO, EB.

    Never.

    GeneralMalaise (c1b78b)

  89. Sorry for pointing out President Obama is as popular today as he was last July, GM.

    snips (6a0094)

  90. The netroots entered the DNC like the pods in “Body Snatchers” under the Dean tenure, and all the whiletheir disturbing nature was ignored. The left fearsan analogous situation with the tPM and the GOP, hence their attempt to scorch the ground on which they stand. Sessions held a fundraiser at another such club, are we going to fire him too

    ian cormac (349188)

  91. Pete Sessions is such a douchebag. Martin Frost was a lot worse, but damn, what an ugly campaigner. Anyway, I doubt Sessions really held a fundraiser at a place like Voyeur. Interesting story, though, if it’s true.

    I don’t understand where Ian’s coming from though. Does he REALLY think the Daily Caller is part of a vast left wing conspiracy? Like it or not, but this stupid event occurred, as has the pattern of stupid spending and lackluster leadership. Shoot the messenger, and get nowhere.

    But yeah, Dean appealed to the netroots. The passionate folks are the donor and volunteers, though, so this makes a lot of sense. Let the actual candidate bother with appealing to the middle (and I don’t mind an RNC that can do both, too). Steele isn’t that appealing to the people the RNC counts on for all sorts of things. That’s one aspect that the Dean lesson teaches us.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  92. Oh, I just read about Sessions having a fundraiser in a building that is also used for slutty stuff. But he was just using the space, free of any sluttiness. Total non-issue.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  93. Research, Ms. Snips… research…

    Posted July 1, 2009 – Kenneth T. Walsh
    Strategists Worry Obama’s Popularity is Dropping
    Some worry Obama’s honeymoon with the public and the media may be over
    By Kenneth T. Walsh

    http://www.usnews.com/articles/news/obama/2009/07/01/strategists-worry-obamas-popularity-is-dropping.html

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Wednesday, March 31, 2010
    The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that 33% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Forty-one percent (41%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -8

    GeneralMalaise (c1b78b)

  94. Comment by ian cormac — 3/31/2010 @ 1:45 pm

    In reading John Cornyn’s statement, it seems to me that he is trying to protect the Rightosphere from making its own “unforced error.” Namely, that of over-focusing on Repeal.

    He’s telling us to tie the Obamacare bill that was passed with the economic situation that’s been neglected this whole time. Cornyn’s absolutely right, and it’s a crying shame that too many on the Right want to avoid going for this jugular.

    Brad S (cf15cd)

  95. Why, GM, you seem to have left out the very next paragraph:

    This is the first time since February 4 that the President’s Approval Index rating has improved to negative single digits. It’s the first time since September 24 that the number who Strongly Approve has reached 33%.

    Even Right-wing Rasmussen knows President Obama is on a roll.

    snips (6a0094)

  96. There’s a certain logic in that, however, this bill allows Sibelius to write any regulation, and this
    provides an enormous overhang on business activity, cap n trade, card check, it’s like a hydra of bad
    options

    ian cormac (349188)

  97. “Some worry Obama’s honeymoon with the public and the media may be over”

    People better bank on a honeymoon ending.

    imdw (19cd35)


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