Matt Damon Agrees with Lincoln Chafee

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It’s clear that Matt Damon agrees with former Senator (and former Republican) Lincoln Chafee who said this about Palin:

I do think she is dangerous for the future of the country having such limited experience and sharing that aggressive, belligerent approach to the world.
That’s not in our long term best interests. It’s a dangerous planet — nuclear weapons — a tremendous capacity of destruction exists.
It’s going to take some wisdom and ability to see gray sometimes, and lessons of the Cold War are that sometimes containment can work.
New generations come along, the Gorbachevs come along — and we haven’t fired missiles at each other and killed each other.
That’s the lesson of the Cold War we seem to have ignored, Lessons that worked.

— Steve Clemons

Comments

51 comments on “Matt Damon Agrees with Lincoln Chafee

  1. George says:

    Matt Damon is obviously about as bright as Lincoln Chafee too. Which, for you star-struck sheep…ain’t sayin’ much.

    Reply

  2. Sybil30 says:

    John McCain chose Sarah Palin strictly so his wife could remain in Arizona and he would not have to hire an escort service to hostess formal dinners. He has a stand-in, whom a lot of Americans just adore, who will vote to break Congress ties as he tells her and it only costs Americans the same.
    She only needs decent looks, adequate intelligence and the ability to double-talk. Experience not needed.

    Reply

  3. rich says:

    Bill R.,
    Why would I equate crazy and irrational? As the son of a retired pastor, I’d be the last person to lump religionists of any sort into one category. As a linguist, I’ve somehow got a handle on basic definitions. I adjusted my words to satisfy your complaint and for precision, pointing out that my analysis still holds true. Looking back, though, it appears I need to reinforce the point, as using ‘crazy’ as a stand in for ‘extremist irrational religionists’ just didn’t get through to you.
    Marginalizing someone you dislike by scapegoating them and putting down their faith as “extremist” or “irrational” or “crazy” is a function served equally well by all three descriptors. I used a broader nontechnical term to accurately communicate the function of your characterization.
    Plenty of fundamentalists hold views that radically depart from scripture. Few have been scrutinized on those points, and it’s unlikely that the media, the electorate, or Republicans will start now. I applaud those who do—but it’s an especially ineffective way to win an election.
    What’s more, few fellow religionists of the ‘rationale’ stripe are willing or able to apply reason, meaningfully, to Faith and Practice. By any objective measure, Muslim religionists far surpass us in both the reason and the forgiveness categories.
    Back to the fundamenatalists, though. Could it be that, having used the evangelical voting bloc, moderate Republicans feel free to toss them aside like yesterday’s news? Not if you’re running for Prznt, I guess.
    My question for you, Bill R., is this: Is it the fundamentalists who’re to blame? And not moderate Republicans? See, Bush was an corporate East Coast moderate—he needed their support, but wasn’t an original fundamentalist.
    I just didn’t see any pushback from moderate Republicans for the past 8 years. Isn’t the intransigence of the Bush Admin on the moderates who couldn’t influence one of their own? Looks like you’re scapegoating the voting blocs who got you where you are today.

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  4. Bill R. says:

    @ rich
    “I wouldn’t put it past him. Would you?”
    It’s first on their agenda.
    You appear to be lumping all religionists into the irrational category. As a retired member of the mental health profession I can state with assurance that crazy and irrational are not at all the same thing.
    Most religionists are not irrational and are willing to subject the theological assertions of the fundamentalists to not only reason but also to orthodox theological scrutiny. They distort and mislead with scripture and religious teaching. It has to be challenged.

    Reply

  5. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Oh lordie.
    Now the terrorists attacked us “because of our ideals” in Sarah Pablum’s twisted little world view. Perhap’s Limbaugh’s disciple, Tahoe, will explain that one to us as well.
    I wonder, do you have to be a fat oxi-contin addict to live in Limbaughland, or is extreme stupidity acceptable as a prerequisite for citizenship?
    GIBSON: We talk on the anniversary of 9/11. Why do you think those hijackers attacked? Why did they want to hurt us?
    PALIN: You know, there is a very small percentage of Islamic believers who are extreme and they are violent and they do not believe in American ideals, and they attacked us and now we are at a point here seven years later, on the anniversary, in this post-9/11 world, where we’re able to commit to never again. The only option for them is to become a suicide bomber, to get caught up in this evil, in this terror. They need to be provided the hope that all Americans have instilled in us, because we’re a democratic, we are a free, and we are a free-thinking society.

    Reply

  6. rich says:

    Bill R.
    No distortion. If you don’t like ‘crazy’, just substitute in “extremist irrational views based on religion” (your words). Then apply my analysis same as before.
    I agree with you on the religion issue.
    The question is, are you going to convince anyone—anyone who needs convincing—by condemning Sarah Palin’s religion (or her family life and personal decisions)?
    I don’t think so.
    What’s more, the attitude of the media and various corporate actors has been to turn a blind eye. Don’t think it can’t happen again. Palin was picked to appeal to people with extremist irrational views.
    Same idea goes for DonS and questions on the experience issue.
    WigWag and innumerable Republicans and Hillary Clinton repeatedly said Senator Barack Obama was “a nobody,” he’s “nothing,” he’s “not about America,”—he has “no experience” and has really “never done anything in his life.”
    Now, liberals are flaying Sarah Palin for having “no experience,” asking in wonderment “who IS this person?”—including no less a personage than Matt Damon.
    It displays a provincialism peculiar to the halls of power and unseen in far-flung locales, where people read up on Governors Spitzer, Vilsack, Doyle, Richardson, Sibelius and Palin. Not that we all don’t want to learn more.
    And it doesn’t mean we like what they see—Schwarzenegger was qualified to rule Collifornia how? Just that minimal awareness is not quite that hard to come by.
    Liberals who tear down Sarah Palin on ‘experience’ or ‘qualifications’ repeat the totalizing, marginalizing slams used, dishonestly, against Barack Obama.
    Erase him: “he’s nothing”; “he’s a nobody.” Erase her: a “mayor” who’s “done nothing” and only served as Governor for “20 months.” A “child-endangering’ “extremist” with “irrational” views on religion,’ even.
    If ‘experience’ meant anything, if meeting lots of foreign leaders meant anything—Dick Cheney would’ve done a much better job. If ‘experience’ and deportment and coherent answers in debates and interviews were a truly viable standard—then George Bush would never’ve been Prznt.
    Transparently substandard Vice Presidents have been the rule since time immemorial. Was Ford chosen to insulate Nixon against impeachment? Was Dick Cheney? How about Sarah Palin? Would President John McCain go hell-bent-for-leather into Iran, knowing no one would dare impeach him when swearing in President Palin is the only option?
    I wouldn’t put it past him. Would you?

    Reply

  7. Bill R. says:

    @rich
    You are distorting my argument.
    I didn’t say Sarah Palin was crazy. I said she had extremist irrational views based on religion. We elected George W. Bush without vetting his extremist irrational views. And we ended up with his version of “faith based presidency” with someone who claimed to be the avenging sword of God. And we and the world paid the price. It’s important to expose extremism, especially when it is couched in religious language.
    Just as the extremists in Islamic countries need to be opposed by rationally based religious and secular people in their countries, we need to do likewise here. By ignoring their appeal we allow those ideas to become accepted and mainstream.
    Most Americans do not believe in bringing on the end-times through the use of military force. But the religious right does. Listen to Chuck Hagee or Rod Parsley. If that extremism is not confronted and exposed, it grows. This is about what Al Gore calls the “assault on reason.” I happen to be a person of faith as well, but my denomination has a teaching of a faith based on scripture, reason, and tradition. Most churches accept that reason is God-given and don’t make claims to be avenging angels of God’s will, nor to have the inside track on implementing some idiosyncratic notion of what the book of Revelation means. That kind of irrationality should be held to scrutiny because it leads us all to mass destruction.

    Reply

  8. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Well, perhaps our resident not-a-troll Limbaughmination, Tahoe, will expand on Sarah Pablum’s following statement, and tell us exactyly how her comment squares with reality….
    “[W]e’ve got to keep an eye on Russia. For Russia to have exerted such pressure in terms of invading a smaller democratic country, unprovoked, is unacceptable.”-Sarah Pablum
    Or, failing that, maybe Tahoe’s deep patriotism will prompt him to explain to us why he endorses putting just another RW liar in as VP.
    Go ahead Tahoe, lets hear you explain the premise that Russia “invad(ed) a smaller democratic country, unprovoked”.
    Bottom line Tahoe, just because your fellow constituency in Limbaughland is ignorant enough to fall for this horseshit, don’t expect the rest of us to be.
    Ya know, Tahoe, I’ve got no evidence of it, and there is absolutely no reason for me to draw this conclusion, but aren’t you a wife beater?

    Reply

  9. Mr.Murder says:

    Damon is speaking the Truth to Power, something that artists have creative license to do.
    Of course it means he could get blackballed, but this is about more than one’s career choice.
    Marvin Gaye asked a lot of people “What’s Going On” during the Civil Rights era. Matt Damon should be celebrated for asking that we raise the bar of scrutiny on candidates.
    Who wants Matt Damon to give up his free speech rights?
    Let him who is without sense cast the first stone….

    Reply

  10. rich says:

    Merely saying “But that’s crazy!” isn’t enough.
    Bill R. @ 11:23AM wrote:
    >>
    “The point here is, Sarah Palin is on the record as believing that the earth was created in six days and is six thousand years old. She is on the record as interpreting present day history through the eyes of the most irrational fundamentalist preachers . . .”
    And?
    That didn’t stop Republicans from taking George Bush and Pat Robertson seriously. It didn’t stop the media from taking DeLay and Jerry Falwell and Rick Santorum seriously.
    Rick Santorum! Do I really need to say it?
    The media and Republicans bowed and scraped at Bob Jones University, and took the wildly irresponsible prognostications of Pat Robertson seriously (Saddam Hussein is the Anti-Christ?). And kept a straight face.
    What makes you think they’ll deal any more harshly with Sarah Palin? Unless they’re motivated to get back in the good graces of the electorate, it’s not gonna happen. It’ll make a great excuse to bring up Rev. Wright again, though.
    Merely saying “But that’s crazy!” isn’t enough: Republicans bought into George Bush—thank you veerrry much, BillR.—so perhaps you need to take a second look at what qualifies as ‘cogent’.
    It’s likely Bush/Cheney just pushed the Republican Party too far, and the electorate just can’t get fooled again.
    But it’s equally likely McCain can use the same Rovian-Reaganesque playbook one more time. Why is that?
    Because our ‘marketplace of ideas’ didn’t work.
    It wasn’t able to provide reasoned, sound debate; nor was it able to move policy or influence decision-makers. It didn’t work when the Park Service replaced signs on evolution with creationism-based text at the Grand Canyon. It didn’t work when the American people questioned the intel and the cause for undeclared war against Iraq.
    They did it before, BillR., and they’ll do it again. Sarah Palin is about as forthright as Ronald Reagan or George Bush; she may even have more appeal. If memory serves, Charlie Gibson and Tim Russert kept on telling us, ad nauseum, just how likable both men were—as though that had any bearing on their fitness for office—totally ignoring their plainly radical views on science, health, religion—the Constitution. But hey, even that’s “just a G—–n piece of paper” in George Bush’s eyes.
    Point is, a lot of people, moderate Republicans included, just let all that go for 8 years. Unaccustomed to responsive governance, I guess.
    NOW, you’re saying “It can’t happen here.” Why, that’d be crazy. Problem is, it already did.
    Sarah Palin’s appeal is visceral, her selection was designed to be culturally reassuring in a way John McCain could never be. I think enough moderate Republicans have opened their eyes to swing the election, but a complaint about how ‘crazy’ Palin is (as though John McCain has ever been terribly rational) when the issue is broad cultural appeal just misses the boat.
    It’s just not cogent.

    Reply

  11. rabbit says:

    The truth about the supposed hatred of celebrity opinions is, celebrity opinions are hated when they are not agreed with.
    Name one single time a conservative told Charleton Heston he needed to keep his mouth shut.

    Reply

  12. DonS says:

    I see that others have been similarly impressed at Gov Palin’s lackof foreign policy knowledge. Sorry for the redundancy
    Maybe we should just move on to her opining that a military confrontation between the US and Russia might just be necessary. Or, should I just say that maybe John Q Public should mull the full implications.
    http://www.americablog.com/2008/09/video-sarah-palin-on-declaring-war-on.html

    Reply

  13. Jim says:

    For better or worse Palin’s comments in the ABC interview are consistent with what much of mainstream American believes, whether they reflect reality or not.
    As for health care, I don’t think either McCain or Obama have much to offer to date. In my simpleminded way, any plan which doesn’t include “universal” or “single payer” falls short of the mark. Every developed nation but America has a health plan which purportedly provides quality universal coverage at a lower cost than we do..Why don’t we, as a start, survey those plans and possibly adapt one to best meet our needs rather than reinvent the wheel?

    Reply

  14. DonS says:

    If anyone neeeds more proof that Sarah Palin is not ready for prime time, much less to be Vice President of the United States, this clip of the Gibson interview is persuasive.
    Gov. Palin is patently igonrant of the “Bush Doctrine”. Clearly this is an individual (I would say “woman but, hey, someone would be bound to accuse me of sexism) who is not familiar with the broad outlines of US foreign policy, even over the last decade.
    http://thinkprogress.org/2008/09/11/after-bashing-%e2%80%98community-organizers%e2%80%99-last-week-mccain-will-appear-at-public-service-forum-tonight/

    Reply

  15. rich says:

    Steve @ 11, 10:58AM –
    Agree with you on all points.
    I hardly suggested denying Damon a voice, merely noted that a CBS interview shows he’s already got a voice, and a microphone—and I respect him for using it.
    Will it be celebrities first, and last? Not say, Prof. Paul Barclay?
    Maybe my point is, Who has real access to and continual participation in our marketplace of ideas? Markets function when regulated; is fame and familiarity the EZ-Pass for entry into the core American Common Property Resource? Maybe it’ a pet peeve, but isn’t that the flaw in Bill Maher’s schtick?
    Like the ‘Hyperventilating Left’—and more to the point—Matt Damon doesn’t counter Sarah Palin’s appeal effectively.
    It doesn’t matter which cherished beliefs held by liberals Sarah Palin violates. (And I too find them repugnant.) It matters whether Palin can turn out the base, dead-enders, evangelicals, and Red-Staters in significant numbers.
    Reagan pulled this off masterfully, and Damon only echoes the objections raised by liberals then. It’s a visceral strategy, not a policy argument.
    And it’s been a pattern. The media and politicos didn’t bother to vet Ronald Reagan adequately. The media and politicos didnt’ bother to vet George Bush adequately. So the outcry over Palin seems awfully naive and disingenuous when no one heard any complaining in mainstream media or D.C. insider circles then.
    So if they rake Sarah Palin over the coals now, it won’t be because of her qualifications—and it won’t matter because Palin’s appeal and charisma, if authentic, can easily overcome her radical politics and ignite a large turnout of the Republican base. There’s a whole template. Witness Repubs gathered in Virginia (last night’s NewsHour) around a leader reciting this years’ incantation: “Barack Obama is not about America. He’s not like us.”
    I actually think Palin’s more dangerous than Damon realizes. She could easily go down for real reasons: corruption, abuse of power, or McCain campaign incompetence. But she’s very tight with old-guard Republicans and corporate circles—oil and corruption included—yet had the political acumen to put some distance between herself and Ted Stevens’ & Co.’s unbelievably brazen greedhead burlesque of pork & corruption. Maybe not completely, but clearly enough to maintain her political viability. And if Dick Cheney can stonewall, never quit regardless of how much Halliburton obscenity spills into public view—so can Sarah Palin. After all, official Washington has given her a model. Get ready.
    I think her social policies would be disastrous, particularly after the last 8 years, but it’s just like Karl Rove to up the ante and double down. With voter caging, voters thrown off the rolls because their homes have been foreclosed, with Hans Von Spakovsky ‘working on’ voting rights, get ready for a replay.
    Sarah Palin’s likable, witty, attractive, and culturally reassuring—and I don’t really like her. Yet she could pull a huge volume of votes for the same reason Ronald Reagan did.
    I don’t think any liberal put-downs about qualifications or complaints about violated beliefs are going to sway those conservatives already inclinded to vote for her.
    We need a different strategy here. If Sarah Palin’s sizzle sputters, it’ll be because even she can’t overcome John McCain’s poor campaign skills.
    Although, would Mitt or Joe be any better? Reeally? It’s not the resume, as Dick Cheney so ably proved.
    >>
    “rich — matt damon is not in line to be president of the united states. as a citizen . . .
    palin deserves tons of scrutiny and public challenge because she might be president. and i’m happy to hear Damon’s rather surprising, sensible review.”
    >>

    Reply

  16. questions says:

    big, fat resume = very very bad???
    I do believe unprovoked = Georgia is innocent victim???
    They’re our next door neighbors and you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska, from an island in Alaska. = seeing is believing??
    the Bush doctrine = rid this world of Islamic extremism = whatever happened to pre-emption??
    we must not blink = ????????
    So her foreign policy is to stare at Russia???

    Reply

  17. questions says:

    GIBSON: Have you ever met a foreign head of state?
    PALIN: I have not and I think if you go back in history and if you ask that question of many vice presidents, they may have the same answer that I just gave you. But, Charlie, again, we’ve got to remember what the desire is in this nation at this time. It is for no more politics as usual and somebody’s big, fat resume maybe that shows decades and decades in that Washington establishment, where, yes, they’ve had opportunities to meet heads of state.
    GIBSON: Let’s start, because we are near Russia, let’s start with Russia and Georgia.
    The administration has said we’ve got to maintain the territorial integrity of Georgia. Do you believe the United States should try to restore Georgian sovereignty over South Ossetia and Abkhazia?
    PALIN: First off, we’re going to continue good relations with Saakashvili there. I was able to speak with him the other day and giving him my commitment, as John McCain’s running mate, that we will be committed to Georgia. And we’ve got to keep an eye on Russia. For Russia to have exerted such pressure in terms of invading a smaller democratic country, unprovoked, is unacceptable and we have to keep… GIBSON: You believe unprovoked.
    PALIN: I do believe unprovoked and we have got to keep our eyes on Russia, under the leadership there.
    GIBSON: What insight into Russian actions, particularly in the last couple of weeks, does the proximity of the state give you?
    PALIN: They’re our next door neighbors and you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska, from an island in Alaska.
    GIBSON: Do you agree with the Bush doctrine?
    PALIN: In what respect, Charlie?
    GIBSON: The Bush — well, what do you — what do you interpret it to be?
    PALIN: His world view.
    GIBSON: No, the Bush doctrine, enunciated September 2002, before the Iraq war.
    PALIN: I believe that what President Bush has attempted to do is rid this world of Islamic extremism, terrorists who are hell bent on destroying our nation. There have been blunders along the way, though. There have been mistakes made. And with new leadership, and that’s the beauty of American elections, of course, and democracy, is with new leadership comes opportunity to do things better.
    GIBSON: The Bush doctrine, as I understand it, is that we have the right of anticipatory self-defense, that we have the right to a preemptive strike against any other country that we think is going to attack us. Do you agree with that?
    PALIN: Charlie, if there is legitimate and enough intelligence that tells us that a strike is imminent against American people, we have every right to defend our country. In fact, the president has the obligation, the duty to defend.
    PALIN: In order to stop Islamic extremists, those terrorists who would seek to destroy America and our allies, we must do whatever it takes and we must not blink, Charlie, in making those tough decisions of where we go and even who we target.
    http://abcnews.go.com/print?id=5782924

    Reply

  18. Jim says:

    More information on Palin’s firing of the librarian can be found here http://www.factcheck.org/elections-2008/sliming_palin.html

    Reply

  19. questions says:

    I think McC want to end the employment subsidy so that there’s no employment tie to insurance, which could be fine were we to switch to single-payer, but he wants it TOTALLY market based because subsidies “distort” the market and that is “bad”. So we become individuals in the market trying to collect information and unable to do a great job of it. The theory is that web sites and services will pop up to tell us how to buy our insurance. Of course, nothing useful in terms of clear info came out of the Medicare Rx program — what a mess that is to negotiate. Employers are in a much better position to negotiate for us. They have cost concerns, a desire to do well by their employees (or risk losing them), and a tax break to get it all done. If we’re going to have corporate insurance, it surely helps to have large players in the middle dealing with them.
    McC’s “plan” is a cobbled together mess near as I can tell. And it’s too complex to talk about something real when we can do all Palin all the time.
    Again, if anyone has a clearer picture of McC’s insurance plan, please post! (Tahoe????)

    Reply

  20. Billl R. says:

    Sarah Palin now says (interview with Gibson of ABC News) that war with Russia may be necessary. Oh yeah.. she’s ready for prime time.. Like I said, these religios nut cases who want to help us all toward the end times..

    Reply

  21. Yikes says:

    Wasn’t Matt Damon fucking Sarah . . . Silverman?

    Reply

  22. chophouse says:

    Regardless of the math, I’ve seen nothing from the McCain camp on what the rationale or expected benefits are of taking this approach. What’s the argument for going this way as opposed to just leaving the whole thing as it is???
    As Klien rightly points out, it’s these types of discussions we need to be having, not who called who what. And I really lay it at the feet of the media of this country that we are not having these discussions. It is completely (wholly??) within their power to force the narrative back to the issues.
    When the history of the 2000-2010 era is written, the failure of our national media, protected by the 1st amendment, and granted usage of the Public airwaves, to fulfill their function as a guardian of public information dissemination will be seen as the lever by which the republic was lost.

    Reply

  23. questions says:

    I’m not sure this answers your point or not…. Under McC’s proposal, you will have to use your regular income to buy health insurance. Employers are likely to drop the benefit (they lose the tax break they have) and not raise salaries commensurately and then you’re buying insurance individually rather than as a group. so on top of everything, your premiums will go up, not down.
    So you lose an $8,000 dollar benefit (75% of the $12K family plan). You are given $5K to buy a $12K plan that you’ve been paying $4K for, while your employer has covered the other $8K. That would seem to put you out $7K unless you get a much cheaper plan. If you’re lucky, your employer won’t discontinue the company plan, or will raise your salary enough to cover the new costs. (And a married couple is likely to have a cheaper plan than $12K — that’s the average for family coverage — incl. kids.)
    Also, you are taxed on whatever pay raise you get, or on the cost of the premiums, so there’s the 28% problem.
    I could be wrong about some of these details to be honest. If someone knows better, please post.

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  24. chophouse says:

    I’m about as far from a McCain voter as can be, but Klien’s article on McCain’s benefits tax has a serious flaw in it. Namely, equating a tax credit with a tax deduction. If a married couple has $24,000 in benefits taxed, at 28%, that’s $6,720 of which $5,000 is erased by the offsetting credit.
    True, there is now a $1,720 tax liability where there used to be none, but the article evades the math and implies that the tax would be much higher. It seems to imply that the $24,000 cost would be reduced by $5,000 leaving $19,000 as taxable income for a significantly higher tax burden.
    I think it would be much more effective to make the point that McCain proposes to ADD $1,720 in taxes to the existing cost of health benefits for an average married couple.

    Reply

  25. varanassi says:

    tahoe:
    mika?!?! who???
    and btw, can you perhaps follow the lead of your dear leader and respect the sanctity of this day?
    …don’t worry, you and your republican/neocon crew can get back to destroying our country tomorrow..

    Reply

  26. questions says:

    Above is from Glenn Greenwald.
    Below is Joe Klein:
    A new rule here: Rather than do the McCain campaign’s bidding by wasting space on Senator Honor’s daily lies and bilge–his constant attempts to divert attention from substantive issues–I’m going to assume that others will spend more than enough time on the sewage that Steve Schmidt is shoveling and, from now on, try to stick to the issues.
    Today’s issue: health insurance. John McCain wants to tax your employer-provided health care benefits. He wants to replace those benefits with an insufficient tax credit–$2500 for individuals and $5000 for families (the average cost per family for health insurance is $12000).
    There is a positive, progressive tax aspect to this: wealthier people should have to pay for health insurance themselves, without tax breaks from the federal government.
    But make no mistake: this plan will do little or nothing for those who do not have insurance now–unless they are young and healthy–and it may well hurt a fair number of workers, especially unionized workers, who get gold-plated benefits from their employers.
    It will certainly do nothing for families with members who have pre-existing conditions or children with special needs–because it makes no provision to regulate the insurers, forcing them to cover all comers at “community” rates that don’t discriminate against the people who need health insurance most.
    It is amazing to me that Obama campaign has let things go this far without pointing out that McCain–who opposes the energy bill because it would increase taxes on oil companies–is actually proposing a tax increase on health care benefits for American workers. But that is precisely what the Senator from Arizona is doing.
    http://www.time-blog.com/swampland/2008/09/mccains_health_care_tax_increa.html

    Reply

  27. Tahoe Editor says:

    “I’m not sure why we care what he thinks. I don’t want to hear it.” —Mika
    “To call her life and her service ‘absurd’ — I don’t know. I think, if you want to compare the budget she ran in Alaska with the budget that Barack Obama ran. Do we really want to talk about absurd, paper-thin resumes? Obama supporters don’t want to go there.” —Joe S.
    “Do you want to diss all the moms of America who attend the sports events of their children? It’s stupid, and nobody wants Hollywood personalities to tell America what to do. We’ve had enough of that.” —Mort Zuckerman

    Reply

  28. Mr.Murder says:

    Maybe Damon can hold her lip-schtick for her.
    Is he qualified enough to do that? Does he have to live in a trailer w/a pit bull and watch hockey?

    Reply

  29. questions says:

    “Eight years ago, complaints about charging rape victims for medical exams in Wasilla prompted the Alaska Legislature to pass a bill — signed into law by Knowles — that banned the practice statewide.
    “There was one town in Alaska that was charging victims for this, and that was Wasilla,” Knowles said
    A May 23, 2000, article in Wasilla’s newspaper, The Frontiersman, noted that Alaska State Troopers and most municipal police agencies regularly pay for such exams, which cost between $300 and $1,200 apiece.
    “(But) the Wasilla police department does charge the victims of sexual assault for the tests,” the newspaper reported”
    http://www.mcclatchydc.com/homepage/story/52266.html
    questions comments:
    Anyone worrying about sexism, here’s the real thing people….
    It’s not the incorrect and nonsensical lipstick stuff and it’s not the fish thing (where did that come from….) (There was a whole Reagan era “fish stink from the head” thing going around about the USSR…. Much more likely the writerly thought.)
    Opposing Lily Ledbetter law is sexist. Lack of health care reform is sexist. Anti-choice policy is sexist. Banning books is sexist. Calling your wife a c*** is sexist. “Selling” her at a motorcycle convention is sexist. Divorce McCain-style is sexist. Acting 24 when you’re 44 is sexist. War is sexist. The sex-ed ad is sexist. And forced pregnancy is sexist. (I’d like to say teaching creationism is sexist, but in fact it’s just ignorant and stupid and a sign of an inability to understand what science is concerned with.)
    COME ON PEOPLE get it straight.
    McCain shows little or no respect for those who suffer. Both McC and P have no tolerance for dissent. Neither is particularly honest. (It looks like the plane on e-bay thing is ever more full of it….) They have no decent policy positions, nothing to argue for. So they make things up. They externalize their own flaws and project them onto O/B — think about it. It’s the Rovian way.
    (And RG, you’re too much! Marxism/socialism is something along the lines of the government’s seizing the means of production and large pools of capital — kind of like the Fannie/Freddie thing. Oh, wait. Bush did that. Hmmm.)

    Reply

  30. Nobcentral says:

    Matt Damon is just as qualified to opine on the Palin Pick as any of the regular nobs on this board. Nothing he said was particularly controversial or new (it doesn’t take a genius to realize that Palin is the least qualified VP pick since Quail).
    You’re just bitter he has a camera in front of him and you have virtually anonymous webposting to espouse your radicalism. Somehow, I hardly think that he’s overly concerned that a nutter like you who thinks that Obama is a Marxist Terrorist won’t watch his movies anymore.

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  31. Ron Gaudreau says:

    I will never, never, never see another film by Matt Damon. He is not qualified to carry Sarah Palin’s pocketbook.
    When he endorsed Obama, Barack had less than 2 years in the Senate.
    A senator does not make the decisions that a governor needs to make.
    Obama has now flip flopped on dozens of his own points.
    Obama is the Last wimp I want facing Putin in the future. He is a Marxist, socialist.
    I dont want a friend of American Terrorist Bill Ayres to decide what is good for me.

    Reply

  32. Bill R. says:

    I appreciate this forum, Steve, and the issues you raise here. Selecting a VP candidate who doesn’t believe in science and who has an extremist fundamentalist world view is a pertinent topic of discussion, whether it’s stated by Matt Damon or someone else. Sometimes 90% of the posts are simply trash talk or trolling so I wish posters could respond in a more cogent manner.
    The point here is, Sarah Palin is on the record as believing that the earth was created in six days and is six thousand years old. She is on the record as interpreting present day history through the eyes of the most irrational fundamentalist preachers who present us a view of the present day world through the lens of their apocalyptic war with Satan. Irrational deluded people should not be in positions of power. The Republican Party has become a party of anti-intellectualism, anti-science, and religious fundamentalism. It’s a party that believes that embryos in petri-dishes are human beings.
    The choice of Sarah Palin is the complete capitulation to that sector of the party. I come from a state (Oregon) that used to be a center of moderate Republicanism. We had progressive governors like Tom McCall and Mark Hatfield. Now the Republican party is out of power here, in large part because of its capitulation to militant religious fundamentalism. Fortunately a majority of Oregonians believe in a semblance of rationalism and pragmatism still.
    As in the Middle East here in America the struggle is with our own religious zealots and extremists who welcome war as the gateway to the rapture. I want to keep Sarah Palin and other politicians who use the power of religious zealotry, away from the nuclear trigger, thankyou.

    Reply

  33. Steve Clemons says:

    rich — matt damon is not in line to be president of the united states. as a citizen, commentator on occasion, and someone interested — he has as much right as anyone to post his concerns and his key questions that are important in his assessments of trustable leadership.
    if matt damon’s commentary was uninformed or silly — or disengenous — it would be obvious in the public marketplace and would be discounted. because his comments make a lot of sense on their own merits — those arguments are worth considering.
    don’t count out anyone in this debate. we all have views and share them with others — and clearly, most americans have little foreign policy expertise. but engaging in smart, civil, informed discussion — actor, janitor, unemployed, blogger or not — should be embraced.
    palin deserves tons of scrutiny and public challenge because she might be president. and i’m happy to hear Damon’s rather surprising, sensible review.
    best, steve clemons

    Reply

  34. rich says:

    Matt Damon is about as qualified to opine on matters of national security and federal policy direction as, well, Sarah Palin.
    As much as I agree with him, Palin actually has experience as an elected official, whereas Damon has none. Palin is about to turn out the Republican base, and Damon’s legitimate concerns won’t influence a close election. It didn’t stop Ronald Reagan, and if McCain can hold the middle, Palin’s policy views will not deter those who find her appealing or reassuring.
    I, too, find Matt Damon to be clean and articulate, not to mention thoughtful and sincere. But his opinion is less important and not more incisive than that of the average dairy farmer or graduate student.
    Sorry, less celebrity worship; more participation for ostensibly average citizens. Don’t get me wrong: I share Damon’s concerns, find him likable, etc. But a bright citizen will invest more time assisting policy wonks where they are welcomed into think tank circles, do a better job, and transform institutional resources, relationships and products in the process.
    What’s more, celebrities are easy targets for derision; and Hollywood liberals pitted against hockey moms will only exacerbate the culture war—which’ll play right into the hands of Karl Rove.
    Showcasing a real hockey mom—one who believes in evolution, God, sex ed, health care and a balanced budget—would go a lot further in winning over independents and conservative voters.
    Unless winning them over to the Obama/Biden ticket isn’t the point.
    Hyperventilate? Or tactical effectiveness? It’s an easy choice, as long as dogmatic complaints from the ‘Left’ aren’t mistaken for an adequate or effective response to Sarah Palin’s appeal. She might go down for prosaic political reasons (record in office, corruption, legal violations)—but she won’t go down because she’s a hockey mom. She might go down because John McCain couldn’t run a campaign if God directed him Himself—but she won’t go down because of her conservative beliefs or family values.
    I know a few hockey moms who believe in evolution and aren’t radical evangelicals. Showcasing them and their reassuring cultural values and support for Barack Obama would do far more good than another vanity video of Matt Damon doing his civic duty.
    If Washington D.C. was so all-fired concerned about the scientific training of elected officials (as was Damon), we would have seen a much higher standard applied to current office-holders, from Bush to Helms to Graham to DeLay to Reagan to McCain (email?!). Unfortunately, that just hasn’t been a major standard when the media light shines bright, and it isn’t likely to be the reason Palin receives negative coverage now. It’ll be driven by other agendas, even if it’s part of the conversation. And even if it’s part of the conversation, it won’t deter many of her supporters.
    Conservatives may vote Obama, but it’ll be because they see Obama/Biden providing fiscally responsible policies, a more limited government, and a more secure nation.

    Reply

  35. liz says:

    Steve…. they say McCain campaign stopped an investigation. How do they get that type of power?
    And I believe the McCain campaign may have stopped my problems from being investigated. I hold a fraudulent Inspector General report that looks like a drunk eighth grader wrote it, issued by SSA. Agents told me it wasn’t in their computers, then all investigations got stopped.
    I’m loosing my home as a result of the uninvestigated problems at SSA. I believe there are tremendous money issues originating in the Columbia SC SSA offices, possibly accounts going into a pot to fund Republican candidates. We are talking significant amounts of money being stolen in people’s names and probably kickbacks to the Part D Medicare company, Community Care Rx.
    I ain’t gonna be quiet no more….. I am being destroyed by the Republicans and you are at risk too….. Everyone needs to remember, if they pick on sick people, they’ll pick on you too.
    And the FBI and DOJ are closed to me too.

    Reply

  36. ckrantz says:

    Watching the election from Europe where im seeing lots of reports like this.
    So far McCain seems to have done a better choice for VP then Obama. Any chanting dems clamoring for Joe?
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/sep/11/uselections2008.johnmccain
    For a few minutes yesterday, amid the thousands of cheering supporters, John McCain could at last feel like a political star. If he could only ignore the chanting: “Sarah, Sarah”.
    That is the sting of reflected glory, but if McCain is suffering a damaged ego at being overshadowed by his vice-presidential running mate, Sarah Palin, he showed no sign of it.
    The hockey mum turned Alaska governor has replicated among Republicans the kind of excitement that Democratic activists had for Barack Obama.
    Yesterday, with the Obama camp on the defensive against Republican attacks and on the slide in the opinion polls, it was the Republicans’ turn to ride a surge of popularity with McCain attracting the biggest crowds since he began his run for the White House.
    McCain, who has struggled for months to attract more than a few hundred people to his events, seemed overcome by the sight of so many people spilling out over a lush green Virginia lawn. “I am so grateful for this turnout,” he shouted.
    But the crowds, with their Republican red T-shirts and “No-bama, Go-mama” badges, were not entirely there for McCain. Some admitted they may not even have bothered to go out to vote for McCain in November if he had not chosen Palin as his running mate. “She definitely for me makes it a slam dunk,” said Brian Sullivan, a photographer. “He was already my pick anyway, but this makes it a slam dunk.”

    Reply

  37. Mr.Murder says:

    Yes, after my post it reappeared.
    The refresh function was not doing it, something in the way settings work did an effective refresh function after a post.

    Reply

  38. Mr.Murder says:

    Steve, your wonderful Damon link is no more. Who killed Jason Bourne?
    I always “The Bourne Conversation” to emerge. He lives on in exile as a combination hacker/blogger who appears at critical junctures to higlight various scandals or geopolitical events.
    Only to submerge once more as a journeyman dissident on self imposed exile….

    Reply

  39. DonS says:

    Tahoe, you know there is absolutely no comparison between Obama’s route to the nomination and Palin’s. Right? If you insist on being that obtuse I’m force to conclude you are only engaging in polemic.
    And, hey, the thread is on Palin. You dissemble!

    Reply

  40. Tahoe Editor says:

    Sarah Palin is no more a Hail Mary Pass than the Democrats’ nomination of Barack Obama with their “once in a generation leader” (who just happens to have no leadership skills) B.S.
    Except a Hail Mary Pass on the top of the ticket is desperation times 10.

    Reply

  41. DonS says:

    Tahoe, while your supposition may have merit, can we agree that the whole Palin thing is a Hail Mary pass, a fraud, a gambit, a degradation of the already degraded political process?
    It strikes me — and I am a political agnostic — that the political process continues to be an accumulation of images and popular assumptions projected into the future. E.g., republicans have capitalized the image of strait laced, middle-upper class, convinced, upright people. Democrats have been cast as lower class, loose, flexible-therefore-confused people. Republican: assertive. Dems: defensive. Repubs: patriotic. Dems: inclusive of “others”
    Problem with all this is that you don’t ever break the stereotype in one cycle, or even one generation.
    It’s a crock, isn’t it. Sadly, the qualitative aspect of candidates is lost and we are reduced to something resembling a reality show or a food fight. Not to mention any serious appraisal of issues.
    Can we agree? Palin is an embarrassment to the Union?

    Reply

  42. Tahoe Editor says:

    This is the kind of pure fantastic hysteria that keeps Democrats out of the White House election after election after election.

    Reply

  43. Bill R. says:

    Sarah Palin is a religious extremist who believes that human history is struggle by the pure believing Christians with Satan and we are now in the end times. History ends with a final apocalyptic confrontation by military force with all those who don’t accept Jesus in Armageddon. The unbelieving Muslims, Jews, heretical liberal Christians, gays and other refuse of history will be subjected to eternal damnation. In her world view all political opponents are instruments of the devil can can only be opposed, not appeased. She believes that wars of invasion, like Iraq, are the will of God. Imagine such a person with her finger on the nuclear button, anxious to bring on the culmination of the end times.
    She is like John Hagee, anxious to begin WWIII to bring about the fulfillment of the book of Revelation as they believe it to be. Imagine such a person with the power of the presidency, and the nuclear football at their side.

    Reply

  44. Mr.Murder says:

    One person does not the button rule. If that were the case Cheney would have already bombed Iran.
    Now, some of the ones who do control part of the sequence to the button might have been a bit too close to some of the ideological excess that is being cultivated at the Air Force Academy, etc.
    That doesn’t mean they are the sole arbiters of the decision.
    If it came to that there would end up being some way of finding Palin unable to take the promotion to the Oval Office as well.
    Another Gerald Ford would be found out there somewhere. Probably Mr.Chaffee himself.

    Reply

  45. Tahoe Editor says:

    1. Matt Damon sounds a lot like Democrats in 1980.
    2. Matt Damon?

    Reply

  46. andrew says:

    TWN:
    What do you make of Biden’s comments on Wednesday calling Hillary Clinton “possibly a better VP pick” than himself?
    Potentially damaging? False modesty? Foot in mouth? A play at winning over female supporters?
    WTF TWN?

    Reply

  47. Mr.Murder says:

    She’s been vetted almost as much as was President Barack.
    That isn’t saying that she was vetted very much.

    Reply

  48. Pending Comment says:

    TWN makes the news, drives the news. I love it.
    Steve got 2,000 people to watch the Chafee tape.
    It’s not a million, but still a lot.

    Reply

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