Monthly Archives: March 2012

¿ANDREW SULLIVAN O JEFFREY GOLDBERG?

Andrew Sullivan (@sullydish): Goldberg On Netanyahu: Bluffing?
“And it’s from this Olympian height that Goldblog will not even deign to review the content of Peter Beinart’s new book challenging the internal contradictions of Goldberg et al:

And to be completely blunt, I’m not that interested in debating Peter’s new book, which I’ve just finished reading, because I find his recounting of recent Middle East history one-sided and filled with errors and omissions. The Middle East crisis is complicated, except in Peter’s telling. It’s hard to argue with Peter’s work precisely because there’s so much missing.

This is the classic, condescending “You Don’t Get The Complexity” bullshit he has used on countless others when he is ever faced with actually taking a stand on the relentless settlement and de facto annexation of the West Bank, with all its hideous moral and human consequences – not least to Israel’s soul and existence as a Jewish state. Notice the de haut en bas smear: “filled with errors and omissions” which he will not produce or cite so they can be aired and debated. He is above that. Presidents and prime ministers call him on the phone.”

Jeffrey Goldberg (@Goldberg3000): A Response to Andrew Sullivan
“If I get information to suggest that I am wrong, I’ll write about it.

Andrew, however, seems impervious to the influence of new information. Also, he’s more and more incapable of expressing nuanced understanding of Middle East politics, and he’s oblivious to the existence of anti-Semitism. (Peter’s book, alas, downplays the global hate campaign directed against Israel and Jews as well). All I can suggest to Peter is that he needs to find more allies who are not widely considered to be irrationally hostile to Israel. What he doesn’t need is people who fly into rages about Israel and its dark manipulation of world politics.”
. . . .
“P.S. Andrew makes no effort at all to render my views accurately.” . . . . “But as we’ve learned over time here at The Atlantic, there’s no arguing with the guy.”

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¿IRA GLASS O MIKE DAISEY?

Ira Glass (@IraGlass): Retraction
“Ira Glass: So you’re saying the story isn’t true in the journalistic sense?

Mike Daisey: I am agreeing it is not up to the standards of journalism and that’s why it was completely wrong for me to have it on your show. And that’s something I deeply regret. And I regret that the people who are listening, the audience of This American Life who know that it is a journalistic enterprise, if they feel misled or betrayed, I regret to them as well.

Ira Glass: Right but you’re saying that the only way you can get through emotionally to people is to mess around with the facts, but that isn’t so.”
. . . .
“Ira Glass: Why not just tell us what really happened at that point?
[long pause]
Mike Daisey: I think I was terrified.
[breathing]
Ira Glass: Of what?
[long pause]
Mike Daisey: – That—
[long pause]
Mike Daisey: I think I was terrified that if I untied these things, that the work, that I know is really good, and tells a story, that does these really great things for making people care, that it would come apart in a way where, where it would ruin everything.”

Mike Daisey (@MDaisey): Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.
“Many consider this week’s THIS AMERICAN LIFE episode one of the most painful they’ve ever listened to. In particular the segment with me is excruciating—four hours of grilling edited down to fifteen minutes. I thought the dead air was a nice touch, and finishing the episode with audio pulled out of context from my performance was masterful.

That’s Ira’s choice, and it’s his show. He’s a storyteller within the context of radio journalism, and I am a storyteller in the theater.”

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¿VIRGINIA POSTREL O LINDSAY BEYERSTEIN?

Virginia Postrel (@vpostrel): Fight Birth-Control Battle Over the Counter
“[M]aking the pill available over the counter could reduce the amount of outrage and invective available for entertaining radio audiences, spurring political fundraising and otherwise amusing the American public. But the medical risks are quite low.

Partly because birth-control pills are available only by prescription, people tend to think they’re more dangerous and less well understood than they actually are.” . . . .

“Requiring a prescription “acts more as a barrier to access rather than providing medically necessary supervision,” argues Daniel Grossman of Ibis Reproductive Health, a research and advocacy group based in Massachusetts, in an article published in September in Expert Review of Obstetrics & Gynecology.”” . . . .

“Aside from safety, the biggest argument for keeping birth-control pills prescription-only is, to put it bluntly, extortion. The current arrangement forces women to go to the doctor at least once a year, usually submitting to a pelvic exam, if they want this extremely reliable form of contraception. That demand may suit doctors’ paternalist instincts and financial interests, but it doesn’t serve patients’ needs.”

Lindsay Beyerstein (@Beyerstein): Prescription Birth Control is Not Extortion
“Most doctors will happily write refills for a whole year’s supply of birth control pills at once. If it’s too much of a hassle to go to the doctor once a year, it’s probably too much of a hassle to remember to buy the pill at regular intervals and take it every day.

Postrel suggests that women are just as good as doctors at finding their own contradindications with a checklist. But if a woman isn’t seeing a doctor at least once a year, she’s probably not up-to-date on her own risk factors. Most people don’t chart their own blood pressure, for example.

One key difference between birth control pills and OTC drugs is that the other drugs are designed for short-term use. Unlike Tylenol or Plan B (which has been extensively tested to prove it is safe to dispense over-the-counter), birth control pills are typically used continuously for months or even years. Any long-term medication requires a certain amount of medical oversight.”

Virginia Postrel (@vpostrel): via In These Times comments
“Aside from introducing readers to the evidence in favor of OTC provision of birth control pills, my article has also had the salutary effect of demonstrating just how paternalistic people who supposedly support the empowerment of women can be.”

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¿DAVIS GUGGENHEIM O PIERS MORGAN?

Davis Guggenheim: The Road We’ve Traveled (Official Trailer)

Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan): youtube.com/watch?v=Nt4rGeSSF4U

PM: Most documentary makers balance these movies with the negative as well as the positive. What are the negatives in your movie about Barack Obama?

DG: Well, I mean, the negative for me was there were too many accomplishments. I had 17 minutes to put them all in there.

PM: Oh, come off it! You can’t say that with a straight face. Come on.

DG: I’m looking at you right now with a straight face.

. . . .

PM: Where do you find fault in him, personally?

DG: You know, I don’t. I don’t frankly.

PM: He’s a perfect human being?

DG: Well, no. But I’m really quite in awe of him as a leader, and the choices he’s made.

. . . .

PM: How much did it cost, and who paid?

DG: Well, I’ll let the campaign tell you that. You know, I took a pay cut to make this. But, you know, again, I make movies…

PM: I’m surprised you weren’t paying him by the sound of it. For the sheer honor and joy!

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¿BRAD DELONG O JULIAN SANCHEZ?

Brad DeLong (@braddelong):
The Kochtopus vs. Those Individuals Now Seized of the Cato Institute; or, No Libertarians in Foxholes Department
“[T]he delicious irony is that the arguments against the Kochtopus–powerful and convincing arguments–are not libertarian but rather Burkean, communitarian, and social democratic ones, and thus arguments that no true libertarian could ever possibly make.”

Julian Sanchez (@normative): Like Rain on Your Wedding Day
“I’m not arguing that Congress should intervene somehow. I’m arguing that exercising those rights as they seemingly intend to is a bad idea; that their direct control would, in itself, be damaging to Cato’s credibility; and that I’m not interested in working for the Republican talking-point factory that all evidence suggests they envision. Like rain on your wedding day and other infamous Alanisisms, that’s kind of crappy, but not “ironic” in any recognizable sense. I realize progressives think libertarianism is just code for uncritical worship of rich people, but as that’s not actually the case, the only irony here is that people think they’re scoring some kind of gotcha point when they’re actually exposing the silliness of their own caricature.”

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¿ERIC HOLDER O GLENN GREENWALD?

Eric Holder (@CivilRights): A.G. Eric Holder Speaks at Northwestern University School of Law
“Some have argued that the President is required to get permission from a federal court before taking action against a United States citizen who is a senior operational leader of al Qaeda or associated forces. This is simply not accurate. “Due process” and “judicial process” are not one and the same, particularly when it comes to national security. The Constitution guarantees due process, not judicial process.”

Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald): Attorney General Holder defends execution without charges
“In sum, Holder’s attempt to make this all seem normal and common should insult anyone with the most basic understanding of American law.” . . .

“As always, the most important point to note for this entire debate is how perverse and warped it is that we’re even having this “debate” at all. It should be self-negating — self-marginalizing — to assert that the President, acting with no checks or transparency, can order American citizens executed far from any battlefield and without any opportunity even to know about, let alone rebut, the accusations. That this policy is being implemented and defended by the very same political party that spent the last decade so vocally and opportunistically objecting to far less extreme powers makes it all the more repellent.”

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¿NEIL DEGRASSE TYSON O KATHERINE MANGU-WARD?

Neil deGrasse Tyson (@neiltyson): How Space Exploration Can Make America Great Again
“When everyone agrees to a single solution and a single plan, there’s nothing more efficient in the world than an efficient democracy.” . . . “The problem is that many people operate on the assumption that NASA should go to Congress every year with hat in hand and justify it every year. Well, I see it as the greatest economic driver that there ever was. Economic drivers don’t need justification.”

Katherine Mangu-Ward (@kmanguward): Neil deGrasse Tyson Is Wrong About NASA
“Wrong. The space program has been a laughable mess for years now, sending elderly (and occasionally combustible) space busses back and forth to an increasingly pointless space station carrying ”ant farms, recycled-urine-based finger paints, and other science fair experiments.” And now NASA can’t even do that.

This isn’t because the democratic consensus behind the space program has fractured, or because there’s not enough money. It’s because no one knows what we’re doing up there, so they fall back on exaggerating the job creating/social justice promoting/kid inspiring that the space program is supposed to be doing down here.” . . . “More wrongness: Economic drivers don’t need justification, unless they are part of our massive, out-of-control federal budget.

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¿TIMOTHY NOAH O NICK GILLESPIE?

Timothy Noah (@TimothyNoah1): What About The Democrats’ Rush Limbaughs?
“We’re hearing a lot from conservatives about how Rush Limbaugh’s attack on Sandra Fluke, offensive though it may be, occasions a second look at all the offensive things liberals get away with saying . . . Matt Taibbi calling Andrew Breitbart a “douche” in his obit, Keith Olbermann calling Michele Malkin a “mashed-up bag of meat with lipstick on it,” Bill Maher calling Sarah Palin a “cunt” and a “dumb twat,” and some guy I’ve never even heard of called Ed Schultz calling Laura Ingraham a “slut.” How is that any different?

It’s different in two ways.

First, all of the people who were subjected to verbal abuse by the liberal- or left-leaning blowhards and smart-asses mentioned above are public figures . . .”

Nick Gillespie (@nickgillespie): It’s Like Totally Different When a Liberal Blowhard Guy Calls a Conservative Woman a Twat!
“If you’ve ever needed a reason to rethink dumb attachments to the left-right, liberal-conservative Manicheanism at the heart of conventional politics, the sort of idiotic Team Red vs. Team Blue mentality underscored by Noah’s need to exonerate the misogyny of his ideological allies should give you something to ponder.”

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¿ROBERT WRIGHT O GLENN REYNOLDS?

Robert Wright (@robertwrighter): Did Andrew Breitbart Die of Hostility?
“When a 43-year-old man dies of an apparent heart attack, you look for something extraordinary that might explain it. In Andrew Breitbart’s case, you don’t have to look far.

One of the personality traits correlated with heart trouble is hostility [ . . . ] I didn’t know Andrew Breitbart, but, judging by his work, hostility was no stranger to him. David Frum wrote in an acute post-mortem appraisal, “He delighted in the enraged outburst, the shouted insult, the videotaped jab of a finger into an opponent’s chest.” Frum explains Breitbart’s “intense focus” on President Obama this way: “only by hating a particular political man could Breitbart bring any order to his fundamentally apolitical emotions.””

Glenn Reynolds (@instapundit): Perhaps The Lethal “Hostility” Came From Supercilious Schmucks Like Robert Wright. Just Sayin’ . . . .
“Really, how pathetic is this piece? When it starts out “I didn’t know Andrew Breitbart,” and then praises an “acute” observation by David Frum, the cause is already lost. Robert Wright: You should apologize to your readers, and to everyone who actually did know Andrew Breitbart. This is unworthy of you. You schmuck.”

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¿SANDRA FLUKE O RUSH LIMBAUGH?

Sandra Fluke (@SandraFluke): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xlRC0nsjtKQ
“Without insurance coverage, contraception, as you know, can cost a woman over $3,000 during law school. For a lot of students who, like me, are on public interest scholarships, that’s practically an entire summer’s salary. 40% of the female students at Georgetown Law reported to us that they struggle financially as a result of this policy. One told us about how embarrassed and just powerless she felt when she was standing at the pharmacy counter and learned for the first time that contraception was not covered on her insurance and she had to turn and walk away because she couldn’t afford that prescription. Women like her have no choice but to go without contraception.”

Rush Limbaugh (@rushlimbaugh): Butt Sisters are Safe from Newt and Rick (deleted!)
“What does it say about the college co-ed Sandra Fluke, who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex, what does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. She’s having so much sex she can’t afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex. What does that make us? We’re the pimps. The johns? We would be the johns? No! We’re not the johns. Yeah, that’s right. Pimp’s not the right word. Okay, so she’s not a slut. She’s “round heeled.” I take it back.”

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