Jaybird Bait


Tod Kelly

Tod is a writer from the Pacific Northwest. He is also serves as Executive Producer and host of both the 7 Deadly Sins Show at Portland's historic Mission Theatre and 7DS: Pants On Fire! at the White Eagle Hotel & Saloon. He is  a regular inactive for Marie Claire International and the Daily Beast, and is currently writing a book on the sudden rise of exorcisms in the United States. Follow him on Twitter.

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54 Responses

  1. Avatar Alan Scott says:

    I think it works when the two candidates have very different views on issues.  Two candidates arguing makes a vastly superior show to a line of them agreeing.

    But a press conference?  What’s the point?Report

  2. Avatar Jaybird says:

    There’s a theory out there that Cain ain’t running for president as much as he’s running for Palin.

    He wants to get his own show on Fox, he wants to be a commentator on Sunday morning talk shows, he wants to get a lot of money to speak publically. Running for president makes that a lot more likely.

    Gingrich might actually be running for President. He’d benefit a great deal from having a debate with the “front-runner”.

    Both guys get benefits under this view.

    I see no other reason that a “front-runner” would otherwise agree to a debate (even a so-called “debate”) with someone from the back of the pack.Report

  3. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    Given that they’d be 69 and 67 years old (respectively) at the inauguration. I think that campaigning for the presidency is replacing golf and chasing kids off your lawn as a retirement pastime.Report

  4. Avatar trizzlor says:

    This debate structure was clearly meant to get away from the American Idol image but fails in a different way – by not putting <i>enough</i> pressure on the candidates to address each others’ weaknesses. Is there a middle ground? Are there any two candidates who you <i>would</i> like to see in this kind of setting?Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

      Absolutely, trizz.  If I could choose my dream debate from the current candidates, I might actually have Gingrich (who I think excels at this kind of stuff – or at least more so that the others) v. Obama.  If they could do a “middle ground” in terms of not agreeing with one another, but staying away from personal jabs and treating one another with respect and dignity, well… I might pay to see that.Report

      • Avatar DensityDuck says:

        The problem is that if you take away the personal campaign, then Obama is left with either performance or smarts, and there’s no way he can beat Gingrich on smarts (and Christ knows he can’t point to performance!)Report

        • Avatar Jesse Ewiak says:

          It’s amazing that conservatives still believe Newt is this genius. He’s really not. Sure, he can throw in some reference to an election in 1874 and a general in the Prussian Army, but even Romney sounds smarter about actual policy. When you look at all of Gingrich’s “ideas” he’s come up with, most of them are pure crazytown or warmed over standard conservative fare.

          Also, as far as performance goes, I’ll take being elected as President as a black guy with Hussein as a middle name less than a decade after Muslim terrorists attacked this country all as a fairly liberal politician over managing to be Speaker of the House for two years, then getting thrown out on your butt after you pissed off most of your own party in the process.Report

          • Avatar DensityDuck says:

            Howard Stern told me everything I needed to know about the “triumph” of Obama getting elected when he ascribed McCain’s positions to Obama and people responded “yeah those are good positions and good reasons to vote for Obama”.

            In other words: They were voting for A Black Dude and nothing else mattered to them.Report

            • Avatar Jesse Ewiak says:

              Yes, people vote more on emotion than cold hard logical facts. News at Eleven. I could just as easily said, all conservatives are just Voting for A White Dude to Get Rid of the Black Dude and Stop Giving the Black and Brown People Free Money.

              See how easy that was? This insane idea among conservatives that being black was a positive for Obama at anything but the margins is just that – crazy. A non-cheating John Edwards who won the nomination would’ve gotten probably 400 EV’s.Report

            • Avatar Mike says:

              Funny. You can take a long list of Obama’s positions, attribute them to a Tea Party candidate, and get the same “Yeah, that’s why we have to get that uppity n****r out of the white house so we can get our stuff done” response out of your fellow Tea Partiers.

              [Edit: semi-redacted word I don’t want on my posts; apologies to Mike in advance. -TK]Report

              • Avatar Jaybird says:

                If you’d like to use racist slurs, could you please go somewhere else entirely?


              • Avatar Mike says:

                When the TP’ers stop using racist slurs, I’ll stop calling them on it.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Mike, I think you’re misunderstanding JB’s point.  I don’t think he has an issue with you disagreeing with Density Duck’s claim that the only reason people voter for Obama is because he was black.  (Which btw you should totally take him to task for; it is a silly argument, obviously.)

                I think it’s using terms like “uppity n****r” on this site that he, and I think everyone else, would ask you to refrain from using on this site.Report

              • Avatar Mike says:

                When the Republicans/Teapartiers in my area stop using that phrase, I’ll stop calling them on it.

                No sense sanitizing it when I’m quoting them verbatim.

                Admittedly, in the last week, it’s been more about disgusting slurs towards women while insisting that sexual harassment “doesn’t exist” or that physically assaulting/groping a person applying for a job “doesn’t count” as sexual harassment.

                But that’s the right wing for you. Slowly passing the one working brain cell around the circle jerk – and the primary job of the one working brain cell is to tell the holder to keep his mouth shut for a day.Report

              • Avatar North says:

                Seriously Mike, I think the TP are as crazy as catfish and as a general rule I’d vote for a painted monkey before I voted for a republican but I’d like to echo Jaybird and ask if you could please up your game a bit and put some thought and class into your commenting?

                It’s not just concern for the level of discourse here (though it is also that and I prise it). I don’t mind it when conservatives do it, they’re only hurting themselves. But when you do it you’re hurting me.Report

            • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

              Duck – Moving past Mike’s slur, is something that you’re really going with?  That anyone that decided not to vote for McCain and Palin (almost 60% of the country, btw) were only doing so because they don’t like white people, or whatever your point is?

              Come on.  That’s just reaching way too hard to get to where you want the conclusion to be.Report

          • Avatar JG New says:

            Concur re Newt’s alleged “genius.”  People are always touting his (brief) academic career – but it was not at a first- or even second-rate college and he never achieved tenure.  Moreover, although he’s considered an “ideas man” many of his ideas are bad, if not just outright crazy (abolishing the Ninth Circuit, say).

            But, most importantly, he has no intellectual discipline.  He’s essentially one of those dorm-room BS artists, spinning off crazy, diffuse ideas late into the night without any sort of coherent framework upon which to hang his ideas.  Ironically, hhe’ll never be popular with the Tea Partiers and their ilk, who are solidly anti-intellectual and (wrongly) lump the Newt into that crowd.Report

            • Avatar Kolohe says:

              <i>But, most importantly, he has no intellectual discipline. </i>

              This strikes me as the most trenchant and accurate critique of Newt, and he’s definitely no Jack Kemp.  It’s also the primary reason why I think he won’t be able to sail into the void of the anti-Romney – he’s got a record that goes back to the 80’s but can’t keep enough coherence to maintain a consistent narrative.

              (I remember thinking in one debate,  I can’t remember which one, and I can’t remember the exact idea – I think it had to do with college education costs, maybe it had something to do with loan forgiveness for STEM majors – but in any case, I remember thinking that Newt would be scary good if he were actually a *Democrat*.  He would be able to balance out a technocratic bend with some practical political jitsu on a fulcrum of intellectual honesty)Report

              • Avatar North says:

                Not to mention there’s probably all of three women in the country who’d be willing to vote for the unabashed serial cheating bugger.Report

              • Avatar Kolohe says:

                I thought Clinton won the womens’ vote in both his Presidential contests.Report

              • Avatar North says:

                Indeed he did. Setting aside his personal magnetism for people of all genders (I know women who never liked him as a politician who were positively giddy after meeting him) Clinton did not addess his infidelity to his first wife by replacing her. For that matter he didn’t address his infidelity to his second wife by replacing her with a third wife. We don’t know what exactly went on between Bill and Hill but he’s still with his first wife. I’m not a woman myself but I would assume that contrasts very sharply with Newt.Report

        • Avatar Mike says:

          Spoken like a true Tea Party Brainwashing graduate.Report

      • Avatar Tom Van Dyke says:

        Mr. Kelly, Gingrich and Cain had a cozy in-depth debate just 3 days ago.  Nobody cares.


      • Avatar Koz says:

        I get your point, but why? Given that context, what could President Obama say at this point that’s worth our attention?Report

        • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

          Well, he is running for POTUS, so I think just about anything is worth having a listen to.  Plus, un-thrilled as I am about Obama’s performance thus far, the GOP seems to be going out of it’s way to nominate a candidate that’s going to make me vote for him again.Report

          • Avatar Koz says:

            I don’t get how there can be such a candidate. We don’t have to guess at Barack Obama’s policy intentions or performance as President. We know what they are, we know they’re bad. We know the Republican party is the way is the way out. Ay bee cee. Tic tac toe.Report

            • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

              But we disagree on both of your assumptions.  I don’t agree that all of Obama’s intentions and performance have been poor.  Also, some of the things that I think were cluster**ks, such as the debt ceiling fiasco, I blame the Rs as much or more than I do the White House.  Lastly, I do not believe, from what I have seen from the GOP during this campaign, that any of the options on the table now represent the ability to effectively govern.  (Though I do hold hope that Romney ends up being someone that could earn my vote by 2012.)Report

              • Avatar Koz says:

                Well, we agree on Romney then. I have found the rest of the GOP field to be less than impressive, especially over the last month or two. Given what’s happened, I think it’s plausible that Romney will win the nomination without losing a significant primary or caucus.

                But still, this is President Obama we’re talking about. Do we really think Newt or Herman Cain or Michele Bachmann would do a better job? In a heartbeat we do.Report

              • Avatar RTod says:

                Well, you guys might, but not me. Newt does not seem a serious or disciplined enough candidate to make me want to vote for him. Bachmann is quite possibly bats**t crazy, and can’t seem to keep a chief of staff for longer than a few months without quitting in disgust – not a confidence-raising sign. And Cain? His lack of knowledge about just about everything he needs to have a handle on, coupled with the whole abuse of power thing, makes him the very last guy I would vote for now.Report

  5. Avatar JG New says:

    Coincidentally, Newt and Callista were sitting in the row in front of me (in coach, no less) on my flight from Houston to DC yesterday.  The FAs were quite gaga about it.  At one point I went aft to use the head and, coincidentally, he came up behind me, also waiting.  I turned and he gave me this big smile and a nod of the head, as if to say “Recognize and acknowledge me,”  but I couldn’t do more than give him an expressionless nod and turned back.  When I came out of the head, he had his arm around one of the FAs, getting their picture taken.

    And I hesitate to say this, lest it be construed as ungentlemanly, but his Mrs. Newt v. 3.0, is a wierdly robotic-looking person in real life as well.  Not a hair out of place, not a wrinkle in her clothes, not a light in her eye.  Deeply unsettling.Report