Obama's favorite TV show is MASH; among McCain's is The Sopranos.

Ana Marie Cox (tip to Tim Blair):

Obama told Entertainment Weekly last month that his favorite television show is the wartime sitcom "MASH," which, while solidly entertaining, was not exactly free of heavy-handed moralizing and liberal pieties. (It's instructive to note here that McCain's favorite shows include the decidedly, and admittedly, amoral dramas "The Sopranos" and "The Tudors.")

Given the indirect (ie, nonsubstantive) nature of some of John McCain's ads, can a YouTube spot on this be only days away?

Indeed, one could imagine a funny — mock outraged — spot from either side: McCain getting his kicks watching brutal Sopranos mob hits OR Obama grooving on some particularly sappy platitudes in an outdated MASH clip. Maybe this idea would be better for one of the nightly talk shows than one of the campaigns.

Eric Muller (www):
A much funnier spot would be excerpts of Sarah Palin's 2006 talk to her church, in which, among other things, she asks God's intervention in securing Alaska a new pipeline and says that the American military efforts in Iraq are "a task that is from God."

Now that would be a hoot!
9.6.2008 5:11pm
Tony Tutins (mail):
Obama: regular rerun-watching guy
McCain: elitist premium-channel cable subscriber
9.6.2008 5:13pm
Even older guy:
That leaves Bush with Seasame Street. I am sure he enjoys intellectual level of Tickle Me Elmo.
9.6.2008 5:16pm
loki13 (mail):
Through early morning fog I see

visions of the things to be

the pains that are withheld for me

I realize and I can see...

that voting for Obama is painless

It brings on many changes . . .

and I can take or leave it if I please.

I try to find a way to make

all our little joys relate

without that ever-present hate

but now I know that it's too late, so I vote Obama anyway . . .
9.6.2008 5:18pm
Actual (mail):
Are you ever going back to your regularly scheduled programming?

Jonathan Adler, September 5, 2008 at 8:59am]

The Convention's Over: Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.
9.6.2008 5:19pm
paul lukasiak (mail):
....and people complain about the lack of serious discussion of issues in political campaigns.
9.6.2008 5:20pm
Ted the Toddler:
I distinctly recall Obama saying his favorite TV show was The Wire. Flip-flop to counter McCain's Vietnam advantage!?
9.6.2008 5:26pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):
Obama: PBS, Bill Ayers With Bill Moyers Special: "Tar, Feather, and Re-Educate the Running Dog Capitalist Lackey"

McCain: History Channel: "Attack At Greater Altitude and From Out of the Sun; Still Relevant?"

Tony Tutins: Woman's Channel: "Rosie O'Donnell Teaches Remedial Living"

Eric Muller: MSNBC, Keith Olberman: "Marxist Techniques For Furthering The Revolution; Their Limited Effectiveness and
Abject Tedium Ignored"
9.6.2008 5:30pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):
loki13: Cartoon Channel: How To Haunt Chatboards and Stamp Your Foot In Anger So Hard You Split In Two- a Users Guide"
9.6.2008 5:39pm
loki13 (mail):

I'm sorry. I didn't realize you were making a substantive point; I thought you were just being crass at other commenters' expense. Clearly I missed the fine intellectual reasoning behind your post, and instead of debating the finer merits behind the complicated reasoning, I mistook it for a joke and responded in kind.

I would be careful with you second substantive critique, however. If I were to split in two, I'm not sure VC could handle two of me. It would allow me to send myself out for pizza. Cost, benefits. I'll get back to you when I am done with the stamping. But... I'm never going to give you up, and I'm never going to let you down.
9.6.2008 5:48pm
Bill Poser (mail) (www):
This shows that Obama is the "values" candidate, right?
9.6.2008 5:48pm
loki13 (mail):

I dunno. I favor Obama in this election, and I enjoy the Wire, but revelation that he enjoys M*A*S*H makes me less likely to vote for him. Now I can only associate him with Alan Alda. Not a good thing. Could be worse- he could've said AfterMASH. That might have been a campaign killer.
9.6.2008 5:51pm
McCain's got that shotgun shine.

And Obama seems to think that infanticide is painless.

Seems like a good fit.
9.6.2008 5:59pm
Michael B (mail):
MASH was only seemingly themed within a Korean War setting. In fact and obviously enough, it served as infomercial styled social/political commentary - for the masses - on the Vietnam War and it aired from the early 70's to the early 80's, i.e. the most critical period (in the early to mid 70's) when the U.S. Congress forsook its promises to South Vietnam - at a time when virtually all U.S. troops had left that theater.

After the U.S. Congress forsook our financial and material promises to the South, post-April, 1975 somewhere in the area of 400,000 to 700,000 South Vietnamese were variously slaughtered by the North while many were glued to the boob-tube, watching episodes of MASH.

File that in the Left's and the MSM's sizeable Memory Hole - because it remains a studiously forgotten piece history.
9.6.2008 6:05pm
llamasex (mail) (www):
McCain liking the Sopranos makes sense, it helps explain how he got all the witnesses to stop talking to investigators in Palin's Troopergate scandal
9.6.2008 6:06pm
Michael B (mail):
"That leaves Bush with Seasame Street. I am sure he enjoys intellectual level of Tickle Me Elmo." Even older guy

Some, perhaps not yourself, might care to consider this, in turn focusing upon this piece by Yale Univ. historian John Lewis Gaddis. Excerpt, emphasis added:

"Presidential administrations tend not to be remembered in the same way they were regarded while in office. Proximity breeds weariness, disappointment and often contempt. Distance—if by that is meant the cooling of passions that comes with retirement, together with proximity to presidents who have followed and to mistakes they have made—tends to foster reconsideration, nostalgia and even respect."


"Presidential revisionism tends to begin with small surprises. How, for instance, could a Missouri politician like Truman who never went to college get along so well with a Yale-educated dandy like Acheson? How could Eisenhower, who spoke so poorly, write so well? How could Reagan, the prototypical hawk, want to abolish nuclear weapons? Answering such questions caused historians to challenge conventional wisdom about these Presidents, revealing the extent to which stereotypes had misled their contemporaries.

"So what might shift contemporary impressions of President Bush? I can only speak for myself here, but something I did not expect was the discovery that he reads more history and talks with more historians than any of his predecessors since at least John F. Kennedy. The President has surprised me more than once with comments on my own books soon after they've appeared, and I'm hardly the only historian who has had this experience. I've found myself improvising excuses to him, in Oval Office seminars, as to why I hadn't read the latest book on Lincoln, or on—as Bush refers to him—the "first George W." I've even assigned books to Yale students on his recommendation, with excellent results."
9.6.2008 6:15pm
loki13 (mail):
Michael B,

Two points:

1. You are correct ass far as M*A*S*H being a parable about Vietnam. They even went so far as to have the Koreans wearing the same wide-brimmed hats as the Koreans, even thought those hats weren't worn in Korea.

2. The rest of your post is the weird, 'stab-in-back' stuff that keeps getting repeated. You might as well bring up FDR and Yalta. It can't possibly be that we were fighting an essentially unwinnable war (because, you know, it was a civil war in a country were we were propping up a despotinc regime and we weren't too popular ourselves, seen in much the same light as the previous French colonizers) . . . no, we would have won if it wasn't for them liberals, and, uh, Hollywood, and, uh, any other random Fifth Column.

America- we win every war, and when we lose, we were sold out by the liberals. Is that a fair summation?
9.6.2008 6:19pm
Michael B (mail):

That's not-scandal, at least so outside of MSM/Dem circles.
9.6.2008 6:20pm
Another slow Saturday in the blogsphere? Apparently Tropical Storm Hanna didn't knock out nearly enough folks' power. Too bad.

Although in all seriousness, Loki13's rewrite of the lyrics to "Suicide is Painless" from MASH wasn't half bad (I'll leave it to others to debate if it was totally bad, instead). Since VC seems to have been derailed by election sideshow issues and/or returning to VC's "regularly scheduled programming" seems so difficult for some, how about we just try a gradual transition, perhaps with a Sunday Song Lyrics contest to rewrite popular songs as a commentary on the current election? I'll call Adler myself if you'd like.

I'm already working on a redo of Springsteen's Born to Run. Only I'm not changing anything in the line "it's a death trap, it's a suicide rap." It's too perfect...

One rule: it's illegal (and too easy) to use anything from Weird Al Yankovic...
9.6.2008 6:26pm
Michael B (mail):

You're asking if your unsupported smirk represents a fair summation?

Firstly, my comment wasn't about winning or losing in the superficial manner you're suggesting. Secondly, I can substantiate my claims at some notable length. Let's first go with the estimates of the number of South Vietnamese who were slaughtered, post-April, 1975 and before that period as well:

One million "boat people," 125,000 to 250,000 of which died at sea (some estimates are a good deal higher); approximately 50,000 Vietnamese executed by Uncle Ho and his henchmen during his "land reform" of the early to mid-50's; for context, there's Uncle Ho's service to Stalin and Mao during his ideological formative and maturing period (though he's still portrayed as a simple, humble "nationalist" by the Left and the MSM); 65,000 or more summarily executed in the immediate wake of April 1975; 250,000 varioiusly killed in Stalinist styled gulags and Maoist styled "reeducation" camps; 300,000 to 500,000 starved to death in the wake of '75; 400,000 to 500,000 South Vietnamese civilians killed by the North during the 1955 to 1975 period.

There are no absolutely authoritative numbers, but all the numbers cited are attributable to various and documented sources, for example:

+ Robert F Turner's "Vietnamese Communism: Origins/Development"

+ Al Santoli's "To Bear any Burdan" (e.g., Doan Van Toai and Nguyen Tuong Lai in Santoli's volume suggest the total massacred in the immediate wake of was as many as 200,000, hence the estimates noted above are by no means the higher number of those variously researched and reported)

+ Mark Moyar's "Triumph Forsaken"

+ Michael Lind's "Vietnam, the Necessary War"

+ Lewis Sorley's "A Better War"
9.6.2008 6:31pm
loki13 (mail):
Michael L,

First, I am all for unsupported smirk. I am also for supported snark. I am, however, on the fence about partially supported sarcasm.

As for your figures- yeah, great. Bad things happened. Whoop de doo. In context, it means nothing about whether we would have won or lost. This is similar to making true comments about our forefathers giving smallpox to Native Americans, and then claiming that we're a bad country now. Mugabe is also wasting his own people now- why not invade there? Bad things happening in other countries is not sufficient reason to waste American lives and treasure.

If you notice, I made no judgment statement about the North Vietnamese. I merely observed we weren't going to win. Your post was unresponsive.
9.6.2008 6:54pm
James Lindgren (mail):
I find it kind of pointless to comment about WHY someone posts something here at VC. One might comment on the substance of the post. Or if it's too trivial to read or comment on, ignore it. But remember, we have posted song lyrics and puzzles for years.

Our hits in the last 12 days have probably been our highest ever, perhaps by a wide margin.

People are fascinated by Palin and Obama, with good reason in my view. I think people should have tried to understand George W. Bush better in 2000. The most intellectually uninteresting thing is the binary decision of how you are going to vote. The interesting thing is what and how these people think and what they are likely to do.
9.6.2008 6:59pm
I distinctly recall Obama saying his favorite TV show was The Wire.

Me, too. But the candidates have to move to the center to win the general, so I'm not surprised he changed his answer. But such a lame choice! *M*A*S*H* is the John Kerry of 70s sitcoms—couldn't he have said Barney Miller, Sanford and Son, or WKRP? Obviously Maude is off the table...
9.6.2008 7:08pm
Eric Muller (www):
Jim, you've turned off comments for your late-afternoon post contributing to the Obama-as-elitist meme, so we can't comment there. But you wonder at the end whether Sarah Palin knows about Wassily Kandinsky or the Wassily chair.

Given that she doesn't know that the Pledge of Allegiance doesn't date from the 1790s, or that the phrase "under God" in it was added during the Cold War, I'd tend to doubt it!
9.6.2008 7:20pm
lucia (mail) (www):
I agree it's odd for readers to ask why someone posted a certain story. It's even odder for them to threaten to stop reading!

On the favorite shows angles: I find it surprising that someone's favorite shows is something that has been in reruns forever! But then again, I guess there must be people who still consider The Three Stooges and Star Trek their favorite shows, and they've been in reruns around here even longer.
9.6.2008 7:21pm
wilyveteran (mail):
I bet Obama watches MASH for Mike Farrell.
9.6.2008 7:26pm
wilyveteran (mail):

we were fighting an essentially unwinnable war

Tell me something, Loki. On this point, why should I believe you rather than Michael Lind, a writer with Bush-hating credentials at least as good as yours?
9.6.2008 7:32pm
Syd Henderson (mail):
Yes, but does Obama prefer the Henry Blake/Frank Burns M*A*S*H or the Sherman Potter/Charles Winchester M*A*S*H? These things are important to know in a world leader.
9.6.2008 7:40pm
A. Zarkov (mail):

The Vietnam war was lost because the US gave up and withdrew largely because of domestic politics. The American people were also waning in their support for WWII by 1945. This was a factor in the decision to use nuclear weapons against Japan. We might very well have ended up with a Korean-type stalemate leaving the Tojo government in place.

It's not correct to say that the Vietnam war was not winnable in a fundamental sense as you imply. Had we been willing to make a WWII type effort we certainly could have won it. But many felt the price would have been too high and perhaps it was. LBJ choose to pursue a limited war with force limitations out of fear that either China or the USSR would have more actively supported NV. That why our rules of engagement were so restrictive.

It will be a long time before we really understand what happened. Even WWII is still covered with the fog of war to a certain extent. I learn new things all the about it.
9.6.2008 7:48pm
Michael B (mail):
"Whoop de doo." loki13

Yea, that sums up your commentary rather well. And after all, those 400,000 to 700,000 (and that's post-April, 1975 estimates only) were little, brown skinned people only.

No more time today, but I will note that three (3) of the references previously provided are entirely or very largely dedicated to supporting the argument that in fact the South (we had largely left the theater c. 1973 in terms of our own ground troops) would have won if we had kept our promises, our commitments - in terms of financial and material support. Those three references are:

+ Mark Moyar's "Triumph Forsaken"

+ Michael Lind's "Vietnam, the Necessary War"

+ Lewis Sorley's "A Better War"

The two other references previously provided, among other references still, lend additional support to that increasingly accepted argument, though it's not the central thesis they're forwarding.

Beyond that, at least for the time being, I'll leave this illuminating and somewhat extensive essay by Peter Rollins, titled Neil Sheehan's Bright Shining Lie: The Story of John Paul Vann or of America's New Media Elite? It's six or seven thousand words or more, but is in fact highly illuminating as pertains to several aspects of the Vietnam conflict, including some motives of the Neil Sheehans and David Halberstams of the world.
9.6.2008 8:07pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):

Clearly I missed the fine intellectual reasoning

-not the first time, Jocko.
9.6.2008 8:21pm
Anonymous #000:
In response to the "Wasilly" post that has no comment thread, since it's about cultural preferences that have relevence to this thread:

Yeah, I wouldn't be surprised if she doesn't know about that Russian painter or the chair brand. The story behind the gaffe doesn't help counter the "elitism" charge one iota.

(And that doesn't even get us to the fact that the mayoral stint was years before the current Lt Gov/Gov, and yet he was still talking about it.)

But personally, of the shows mentioned by the presidential candidates I've seen, I don't like any of their preferences. I don't much like their politics, either, so that figures.
9.6.2008 8:29pm
loki13 (mail):
wilyveteran et al,

1. Whose word is more trustworthy- a simple writer, or a NORSE GOD? Admittedly, I'm the god of deception, but still...

2. Yes, I have concern for the "brown people". But that's not really Michael B's concern. There's "brown people" as he so endearingly calls them being slaughtered all the time, and we don't get involved. Why? Because experience has taught us that unless we have a compelling national interest, it is not worth the lives and treasure to get involved in other country's conflicts. Even our proxy successes (see Afghanistan) don't always work out so well (see, also, Afghanistan). The "brown people" are always invoked by people when they want to intervene for other reasons, and conveniently forgotten the rest of the time.

3. I will not hijack the thread further on Vietnam. I will not argue that if we fully committed, we could have won- after all, we had nuclear weapons. However, such contrafactual arguments don't really work. It's similar to "what if we let MacArthur take it to the North Koreans" or "what if the Germans hadn't broken their treaty with the USSR?" It's easy for Michael B. to play armchair historian and say we didn't do it right, and find revisionist soapbox writers who agree with him, but here's the small facts:

1. The majority of the people in Vietnam weren't with us. Regardless of whether or not it was or is a repellent ideology, the Viet Cong were considered the heirs to the anti-imperialists who drove the French out of Indochina and had a great amount of loyalty.

2. If we chose to escalate, then the Viet's foreign sponsors would have as well. That fact, while well known at the time, is conveniently forgotten by the revisionists.

So I will no longer post on this. If you cchose to continue to believe that we were somehow "stabbed in the back" by Hollywood and Libruls and a Fifth Column, feel free. But don't try selling your crazy to me.
9.6.2008 8:40pm
Blar (mail) (www):
Wow, people can't even get this right. From EW:
Q: What shows were you passionate about as a child?
A: You know, I grew up in the golden age of sitcoms. I think M*A*S*H was probably my favorite. ...
Was his favorite growing up.
9.6.2008 8:59pm
Kevin P. (mail):

Eric Muller:
... But you wonder at the end whether Sarah Palin knows about Wassily Kandinsky or the Wassily chair.

Given that she doesn't know that the Pledge of Allegiance doesn't date from the 1790s, or that the phrase "under God" in it was added during the Cold War, I'd tend to doubt it!

Wow, you make a caricature of an elitist.
9.6.2008 9:26pm
Kevin Murphy:
Seems like Obama is a bit ossified in the cultural department. M*A*S*H was, what, 1970's? Talk about being stuck in the past....
9.6.2008 9:45pm
"They even went so far as to have the Koreans wearing the same wide-brimmed hats as the Koreans, even thought those hats weren't worn in Korea. "

Actually, I think THAT was from Jospeh Heller.

loki--Vietnam is one of my areas. I agree with you *in general.* But the "unwinnable war" idea is a dodge that people created to avoid wrestling with some tougher issues. There probably *were* strategies that could bring victory, defined in a way different from the definition you perhaps have in mind. But "unwinnable" is a cop-out.

And to clarify, I'm not saying it is YOUR cop-out. It is a national "meme." Like, say, the "Sick Man of Europe" meme regrading the late Ottoman Empire, or "Only communist dictatorhip was holding Yugoslavia together." And they serve as short crib-sheets for topics that don't have such easy answers.

Full disclosure statement: I do not think that the US ought to have sent large numbers of forces to Vietnam in the mid-60s.

Final point: The BEST SHOW is, in fact, "The Venture Brothers." Saying so precludes my future candidacy for national office. But I must fight for what I believe in.
9.6.2008 9:58pm
Kevin Murphy

(Shh! He's going to include watching M*A*S*H on his list of foreign policy experiences.)

I don't know why a live-action cartoon like M*A*S*H appeals to so many people. In addition to which, the leitmotif of a war that would be ended, were it not for the stupid and recalcitrant political leaders is quite a slander against Truman. I don't think this is why Obama likes the show, of course. But as a fellow Democrat, he might want to think about this: Look how a noble act can be turned against you and undermine your legacy.

Truman's reasons for delaying the negotiated solution of the war were, to a large extent, noble. Alan Alda is a weenie.
9.6.2008 10:10pm
loki13 (mail):

I am not sure where we disagree, but I find you a temperate person who I can disagree with reasonably, so I will add this (despite my previous avowal not to post again):

1. Of course there is no such thing as unwinnable war.

2. I am more bothered by the 'stab in the back narratives' than anything else.

While there are always area of grey, our loss was multifaceted. Vietnam would have been damn near impossible had we used the best tactics, a professional army, and our full resources. Instead we had the "best and brightest", a volunteer army, and varying amounts of dedication. Looking back and saying "But we would have won if not for . . ." is the worst kind of historical revisionism; things are too multifacted for that. We can go back and say that certain things worked well or poorly, but the world is a dynamic place; had we changed tactics in one area, surely our opponents would have as well. Had we committed more resources, the Chinese and Russians might have provided more troops and more than just advisers and missiles (respectively).

In short, if I had longer hair, glasses, five kids, was the Governor of Alaska, and was a woman, I might be the GOP VP candidate. But I'm not. Seems kind of silly to argue.

(Also, ATHF and Sealab 2021 were always better then that newcomer VB)
9.6.2008 10:24pm
Anonymous #000:
12oz Mouse always tickled my brain pan the most, with VB and Sealab tying for second, but it's not everybody's cup of pixelated vomit. But Maiellaro is a freaking genius.
9.6.2008 10:28pm
Tony Tutins (mail):

couldn't he have said Barney Miller

Best cop show ever.

Beyond the pious moralizing, the trouble with MASH was that it quickly became the Alan Alda Spotlight show -- that's why Trapper John left, his role dwindled to providing reaction shots to things Alda said. But to a kid it may well have been a fascinating glimpse into a different world.
9.6.2008 10:41pm
These things are important to know in a world leader.

Dylan or Brandon? Pacey or Dawson? Brenda or Kelly? Logan or Duncan? Jane or Sydney or Kimberly?
9.6.2008 10:58pm
Dave N (mail):
I have to come to Barack Obama's defense. He and I are approximately the same age (I am 5 months older). In retrospect, M*A*S*H had some serious problems. Jackie Cooper's autobiography lays some of them bare (he directed the first 2 or 3 seasons).

But that said, M*A*S*H was mustsee viewing for people my age. It ended when Obama (and I) was finishing college (1983), when we all are often more idealistic than we are in middle age. It also was the dominant comedy during our high school years.

And when you get past Alan Alda's liberal politics and sanctimoniousness, it was a pretty funny show.

(Btw, I loved Barney Miller too—and am a huge Sopranos fan as well—but M*A*S*H was an important show for people, like Obama and myself, who grew up in the 1970s and went to college in the early 1980s)
9.6.2008 11:16pm
LM (mail):
By this test, I should be a McCain guy, so the model may need a little smoothing out around the edges. That said, I highly recommend this apolitical and frequently very funny blog by one of the writers on Mash, Cheers, Frazier, The Simpsons, and more.

What am I saying? He's a Hollywood liberal who's been working in television for 30 years. His blog can't be apolitical, whatever I may think. In fact, I'm beginning to doubt it's even funny. I'm glad I caught myself. Proceed at your own risk. YMMV, and all that.
9.6.2008 11:18pm
Sean O'Hara (mail) (www):
Eric Muller,

I've read the Palin quote about God and the Iraq War. I've read the whole quote, which makes clear that she doesn't think the war a mission from God, but she's asking people to pray that the war is God's will -- i.e., that the US isn't fighting an unjust war that God opposes.
9.6.2008 11:20pm
LM (mail):

Getting split in two could have other advantages. In the highly unlikely event you lose your bet, you could ban one of yourself and let the other one stay.
9.6.2008 11:22pm
loki13 (mail):

Lose my bet? If McCain gets more than 65% of the (white) female vote, I think I'll lose my mind.

Anyway, I'm counting down the days until I won't have The Ace to kick around anymore.
9.6.2008 11:26pm
LM (mail):

Your bet is safe. I wish I were that sanguine about the election.
9.6.2008 11:43pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):

In response to the "Wasilly" post that has no comment thread

As the post seems to be about some feeling of superiority gained by owning mass-marketed designer chairs too uncomfortable to be sat in, I don't think it's an accident, either.
9.6.2008 11:45pm
Marko (mail):
And no kind words about the Sopranos and the relentlessness of evil? Go grade some papers, boys. And then go watch "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance," to remember where you are in the real world.
9.6.2008 11:47pm
"1. Of course there is no such thing as unwinnable war.

2. I am more bothered by the 'stab in the back narratives' than anything else. "

Then we is good.

Except for your maligning of Venture Bros. ATHF was my fave for a time. But they got into gross-out humor in season four, and I lost interest. But the episode in which Master Shake becomes convinced that the schoolbus parked out front is a vampire was the high-water mark of American TV. Sealab was funny, whenever I caught it. But neither show had Dr. Girlfriend. Or a necromancer with a communications degree (minor: women's studies). Or a hero whose only real power is killing Blackulas.

9.7.2008 12:18am
loki13 (mail):

Wow, that sounds suspiciously like, I dunno, envy? Seeing as JL has owned the chair for some time, he probably enjoys it. As for being uncomfortable- well, he never mentioned that. Perhaps you harbor resentment over that Wassily knockoff you purchased a few years back.

I thought the GOP was against class warfare?
9.7.2008 12:18am
loki13 (mail):

I have but one response . . .

Department of Sensitivity lecturer: In today's workplace, even something as innocent as a coffee cup can be offensive... especially one with a swastika.
9.7.2008 12:28am
I recall those chairs, though I never knew what they were called. One of my best friends had a whole buch of them in his house. Along with one of those spherical TVs.

I've always thought of them as '70s chairs.

The seventies were awful. God-awful, to be precise. Why anyone would want to preserve that decade through their home furnishings is a complete mystery to me. But integrity demands that anyone sitting in such a chair should wear a leisure suit.
9.7.2008 12:30am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
she's asking people to pray that the war is God's will.

Our government and our military are supposed to reflect the will of the people, not the will of God. People who want to involve God in military affairs might feel more comfortable living in a place like Iran or Saudi Arabia.

If you want to go to your church "to pray that the war is God's will," I fervently support your freedom to do that. But government is not the place for that concept, and government officials should not be involved in promoting that concept.

And all this is aside from a more specific concern. Dubya was ignorant enough to use the word "crusade," more than once. Since we are a nation with a mostly Christian population, fighting against people who are mostly Muslims, the word he picked is highly inflammatory. Her approach to the subject sounds a lot like his.
9.7.2008 12:58am
Green Monster (mail):

I once had such a man crush on a chair-well you couldn't really call it a chair because the human body could not be manipulated the way the designer origami'd the modelling crash dummy-that I considered vandalizing the studio where it was being displayed in an effort to rid myself of disgusting, new emotions. Unfortunately, when I enquired as to the employ of a group of hoodlems I found chatting behind a dumpster, and expressed interest in flaming beer bottles sailing through pomo paintings, I discovered a sting operation in situ.

Needless to say, I misspoke "moltov cocktail," and was immediately arrested for prostitution, which was later dropped and replaced with a greater charge. The following unfortunate incarceration lent opportunity to study wood working and modern art. Today, I construct and insure insipid furniture useless for the scale of modern humans and hobbits, and troll alleys for vandals looking to scuff up a posh set. When the high and low class social agitators lock eyes... well, I never had a woman treat me quite like the insurance company does, but I like it anyway.
9.7.2008 12:59am
"Our government and our military are supposed to reflect the will of the people, not the will of God."

i wonder what you think you're arguing by repeating yourself in every thread
9.7.2008 1:01am
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):

Wow, that sounds suspiciously like, I dunno, envy?

that's right, you "dunno".
9.7.2008 1:07am
Dave N (mail):
Welcome Jukeboxgrad (spouter of the DU/Kos line).

Notice his post. He provides a blatant misreading of the prior post. Palin was suggesting people might pray that the war was God's will (not suggesting that the war WAS God's will at all, part of the misreading part, something Jukebox excels in).

Second, he compares Palin's religious beliefs to the Saudis and Iran--nice way to go about a drive-by smearing.

Third, he provides the linkage to President Bush--part of the tired, cliched "Bush Third Term" meme of the Obama campaign.

What I expect of Jukebox. All partisan hackery; all the time.
9.7.2008 1:08am
LM (mail):

There are artists working even during the tackiest of times. The problem is that by preserving only the best examples of an ugly era, it gets harder to distinguish it from the more aesthetically tolerable ones.

As for why some people would preserve even the tacky stuff, fashions come and go, but every day is a day somebody lost his virginity.
9.7.2008 1:15am
loki13 (mail):

Ewwwwwwwwwwww....... I don't think I'll ever be able to sit on someone else's old couch again without that thought now. You, sir, are evil- I haven't been this angry since being trapped in an elevator with someone who hummer "Copacabana" for 45 straight minutes.
9.7.2008 1:37am
Dave N (mail):

Now THAT was torture.
9.7.2008 1:39am
loki13 (mail):
Dave N,

The question I had- iven my limited knowledge of the Manilow canon, would 45 minutes of "Mandy" or "Copacabana" be worse? 45 minutes of Copacabana made me angry, but Mandy?

I might have ripped a hole in the floor of the elevator and jumped down ten stories.
9.7.2008 1:46am
"The problem is that by preserving only the best examples of an ugly era, it gets harder to distinguish it from the more aesthetically tolerable ones."

LM--We've been playing nice. But you SURELY don't mean to suggest that the '70s produced anything that was aesthetically tolerable?

And I would have to guess that no one ever lost his/her virginity on one of those chairs. If they had, that would probably end their interest in ever having sex again.
9.7.2008 1:48am
Dave N (mail):

Feel blessed that your knowledge of the Manilow canon is so limited.
9.7.2008 1:52am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
i wonder what you think you're arguing by repeating yourself in every thread

You're right, we should make sure that no one here ever says the same thing twice. I nominate you to be the redundancy police. You've got your work cut out for you.

Let us know if you actually have a substantive response to what I said (since you've had more than one chance to think about it).
9.7.2008 3:42am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
Palin was suggesting people might pray that the war was God's will (not suggesting that the war WAS God's will at all

I know that "Palin was suggesting people might pray that the war was God's will." What did I say that was contrary to this? I don't grasp what hair you're trying to split.

he compares Palin's religious beliefs to the Saudis and Iran

Indeed, because a key difference between our system and theirs is that we keep religion and government separate. At least we used to.

he provides the linkage to President Bush

The linkage is obvious. Palin is Bush with a skirt. The way she's stonewalling Troopergate is classic Bush.
9.7.2008 3:44am
LM (mail):

I like the chairs, though I agree I wouldn't get too experimental with them. And yes, aesthetically the '70s were the nadir. (Politically, 2000 was the nader.)
9.7.2008 7:35am
LM (mail):

What were you doing in an elevator for 45 minutes (aside from contemplating homicide)?
9.7.2008 7:37am
treebeard (mail):
When I was a teenager growing up, I loved MASH.

Now when I watch reruns, I find it for the most part unfunny, and full of liberal platitudes.

The strangest part for me is, I find myself agreeing with Frank Burns all the time (at least when it comes to his understanding of Communism, the Korean War, the military, etc.). That was not expected. Can anyone else here relate? Is realizing that Frank was right a sign of maturity?

Funny, I also agree with Winchester, more often than not. A great man.
9.7.2008 8:57am
Hei Lun Chan (mail) (www):
Dylan or Brandon? Pacey or Dawson? Brenda or Kelly? Logan or Duncan? Jane or Sydney or Kimberly?

Brandon is a goody two-shoes. Dawson is a weenie. Brenda is a whiner. Logan is a douche. (But in a good way!) Sydney has the lovely red hair and isn't (that) crazy. And I can't believe I've seen almost every episode of all four shows. Veronica Mars is the show I'd be proud to say I watched. The other three ... not so much.

And an oldie-but-goodie, from the Melrose Place episode on Seinfeld":

Lou: Did Kimberly steal Jo's baby?
Jerry: I don't know.
Lou: Did Billy sleep with Allison's best friend?
Jerry: I don't know.
Lou: Did Jane's finance kidnap Sydney and take her to Las Vegas? And if so, did she enjoy it?
Jerry: I don't know.
Lou: Did Jane sleep with Michael again?
Jerry: Yes! That stupid idiot. He left her for Kimberly, he slept with her sister. He tricked her into giving him half her business, and then she goes ahead and sleeps with him again. I mean she's crazy. How could she do something like that? Oh that Jane, she makes me so mad.
9.7.2008 10:33am
loki13 (mail):

Earthquake. Elevators shutdown automatically. The wild swinging back and forth was kind of fun. The 45 minute wait? Not so much.
9.7.2008 10:48am

My friend and I call it the "Spicoli/Hand Phenomenon." When you watch "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" as a teen, Spicoli is cool. Watch it as an adult, and you realize the Mr. Hand--like Shylock--actually is the victim.

Also, the naked girl losing her virginity in the dugout just doesn't get you going once you've actually had sex a few hundred times yourself.

And now *I* am Mr. Hand. And my students are little Spicolis. *Rich* Spicolis.

It's called growing up. Dammit!
9.7.2008 1:40pm
loki13 (mail):

I prefer the Spicoli/Penn dichotomy. The actor who played Spicoli became Sean friggin' Penn?
9.7.2008 2:48pm