October 2, 2008

"He's just a nerd with natural Xanax in his blood."

Andrew Sullivan, awed by the marvelous -- and not cool! -- calm of Obama.

ADDED: My take on this has long been that Obama is phlegmatic.

"Natural Xanax in his blood"... it's the modern -- pharma-doused -- version of the old-school belief in the four humors.

Xanax ≈ phlegm.

47 comments:

bleeper said...

It's not Xanax, it's menthol.

MadisonMan said...

At some point, Obama will disappoint Sullivan, just as Bush did. Until then, it's (again, as with Bush) like reading about a crush he has on a Politician.

Memo to Andrew: Grow Up.

bleeper said...

And, it's not cool, it's Kools.

Could explain the production of phlegm. Snot that there's anything wrong with that.

rhhardin said...

Cool can also be had with beta blockers, as concert violinists know. Just enough to keep the heart from speeding up; the mind takes cues from the heart rate, and if the heart is calm, everything must be okay, the mind figures.

madawaskan said...

Andrew:

It's-Xanadu!

{I'm pretty sure Sully has reached the point where he can smoke a cigar through his ear.}

rhhardin said...

I had a smile-and-keep-quiet boss once.

Apathetic Citizen said...

It's interesting to speculate how many national politicians take antidepressants, sleeping pills, Red Bull, and other newfangled brain drugs. 22 million prescriptions issued last year for Prozac alone.

Obama does have a temper. Remember that article by the guy who covered him in the Illinois legislature, how Obama went ballistic on him after he wrote a negative story....Here.

"It's not quite eight in the morning and Barack Obama is on the phone screaming at me."

"The morning after the story was posted online, I arrived early at my new offices. I hadn't taken my coat off when the phone rang. It was Obama.

The article began, "It can be painful to hear Ivy League-bred Barack Obama talk jive."

Obama told me he doesn't speak jive, that he doesn't say the words "homeboy" or "peeps."

It seemed so silly; I thought for sure he was joking. He wasn't.

He said the black legislators I cited in the story were off-base, and that they couldn't have gotten the bills passed without him.

I started to speak, and he shouted me down.

He said he liked the other story I wrote."

sean said...

Isn't it unreal, how Sullivan used to rhapsodize about Cheney's male organ, and now has this rather ludicrous love for Obama? But he is never going to go for a breeder like Clinton or Palin.

former law student said...

Cool head main t'ing -- old Hawaii saying.

But thinking of Obama keeps bringing me back to this:

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you
But make allowance for their doubting too,
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream--and not make dreams your master,
If you can think--and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings--nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much,
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And--which is more--you'll be a Man, my son!


--Rudyard Kipling

Tari said...

Oh boy, a candidate with the equivalent of one of the most addictive perscription drugs in history in his bloodsteam. What a stellar recommendation.

Lorelei Leigh said...

At some point, Obama will disappoint Sullivan, just as Bush did. Until then, it's (again, as with Bush) like reading about a crush he has on a Politician.

Memo to Andrew: Grow Up.


Could not have said it better myself.

I used to really enjoy reading Andrew Sullivan's blog, even if I didn't agree with him. Now, I don't enjoy reading it, even when I do agree with him. I wondered for a while whether it was Andrew or myself who had changed. I think it must be me. I outgrew him.

rhhardin said...

Constitutional question

Neighbors of Andy Lacasse said the sign, which reads "Obama Half-Breed Muslin [sic]," breaches the fine line between free speech and inappropriateness.

Fred4Pres said...

Andrew Sullivan logic really makes no sense. Now he is fauning over the Dear Leader. How about thinking what a totally Democratically controlled House, Senate and Whitehouse really means.

Meanwhile we have leaders who should be run out of town on a rail making statements like this:

WHAT THEY SAID ABOUT FAN AND FRED: The Wall Street Journal rounds up some pre-meltdown quotes on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from the likes of Barney Frank, Maxine Waters, and Charles Schumer. My favorite: "Rep. Frank: I do think I do not want the same kind of focus on safety and soundness that we have in OCC [Office of the Comptroller of the Currency] and OTS [Office of Thrift Supervision]. I want to roll the dice a little bit more in this situation towards subsidized housing."

Well, roll the dice we did . . . .

Barney Quotes

Henry said...

He's just a nerd with a Teflon demeanor.

Sullivan quotes Joe Klein:

His demeanor has rendered foolish all the rumors about his alleged radicalism.

His demeanor?

Is Obama running for president or running for figurehead?

(I actually think the latter, which means that an Obama presidency will look an awful lot like the Democrat Majority in congress but with even less rudder.)

erniecu73 said...

Sullivan will be within the scond wave of exiles. I'm predicting this.

OT, Lorelei, sorry, every time I read your name, I hear Julie Andrews yoddleing in my head...

sonicfrog said...

Chip Ahoy really needs to do a flash animation of Andy and Barry, kissing in a tree...

Methadras said...

Little Miss Sullivan once again confers his seminal adulation for his one true God, Mr. Barely. How cute.

erniecu73 said...

Sully, Couric, Gibson, Iffill, Matthews, Olbermann et al always remind me of the story of Miguel Angel Quevedo. He was the owner of perhaps the most widely circulated magazine in Cuba, Bohemia
He was one of Castro's most outspoken supporters, and most of his journalists as well. However, in 1969 he killed himself in exile, leaving behind a very damning testament. It is reproduced in English at the link.

I learned about Quevedo and this letter in Miami directly from its recipient.

integrity said...

Andrew Sullivan has been doing a beautiful job. His millions of hits are well deserved and earned. I'd be careful party people, Sullivan has a good shot at becoming an exalted blogger for the work he has been doing since his awakening from his meta-corruption.

Your envy is very unattractive. Let's see one of the kool-aid drinking right-wingers even attempt the level of integrity Sullivan is demonstrating.

Saw "Taxi From The Dark Side" last night and wept like a baby. Shame on the people that have done this to the United States, you've done this stuff in my name and should be sitting here groveling at Sullivan's feet. Learn from him, many here need redemption in a profound way.

Apathetic Citizen said...

madaw--

Here's the movie Xanadu

I think the elderly man roller skating is Gene Kelly.

You have to wait about :30 secs for tigress Olivia Newton John.

Later in the clip he asks her how she likes kipling.

EDH said...

King size man crush.

MadisonMan said...

It's interesting to speculate how many national politicians take antidepressants, sleeping pills, Red Bull, and other newfangled brain drugs. 22 million prescriptions issued last year for Prozac alone.

Is there a reason we should expect politicians to be real healthy? They have high-stress jobs. I'd be surprised if they aren't on some kind of drug. And it doesn't bother me if they are. Drugs do help people function.

Apathetic Citizen said...

mad man--

I agree.

But if I were running for office, I would not want it to be known I was on Xanax or any mood-regulating potion. Too big of a potential negative.

But I'll bet in 20 years politicians will boast about it.

jdeeripper said...

What we really need in a President is someone who is sanguine.

Alex said...

I've noticed that vbspurs hasn't posted in several days. I hope she's ok.

Lorelei Leigh said...

OT, Lorelei, sorry, every time I read your name, I hear Julie Andrews yoddleing in my head...

How dreadful. I apologize that my name would call up something so horrific in your mind.

Alex said...

Sullivan = pre senile dementia.

integrity said...

Alex said...
I've noticed that vbspurs hasn't posted in several days. I hope she's ok.


Probably upset about Kathleen Parker et al throwing in the towel on Palin. Plus all of the negative numbers surrounding Palin would be depressing to one of her biggest cheerleaders. I figured Ann's defense of Palin today would lure her back.

Alex said...

Victoria, if you're reading this forum please don't go away! There is more to fight for then the McCain/Palin ticket.

Mitch H. said...

That fact that a non-medicated adult can look at a Barrack Obama and see "If" is just another datapoint in my "Glorious Mirrorball" theory. You see those hopes or fears that you yourself project upon the mirror.

Sullivan sees a paragon of manly post-sexual virility. FLS sees "If". I see a moral coward who will never commit himself to any action which requires he stand firm. Freddeso sees a needy, abandoned child.

Only the individual inside the mirror shell knows what he is. But I fear what'll happen when he no longer can hang back & take his cues from a surrogate Daddy. Perhaps we'll get a shadow President - Axelrod or whomever becomes chief of staff. Or we'll get no president at all - just a airy, arid void behind the desk in the Oval Office, as all around him the whirlwind screams, slowly scouring the silvering off the mirrored surface.

Alex said...

Only the individual inside the mirror shell knows what he is. But I fear what'll happen when he no longer can hang back & take his cues from a surrogate Daddy. Perhaps we'll get a shadow President - Axelrod or whomever becomes chief of staff. Or we'll get no president at all - just a airy, arid void behind the desk in the Oval Office, as all around him the whirlwind screams, slowly scouring the silvering off the mirrored surface.

12:37 PM


I couldn't have put it better myself. President "Nothing There".

madawaskan said...

Apathetic Citizen_

Holy gawd-

Gene Kelly on roller skates!

Oh and the lyrics to Xanadu I think I'm going to be ill!

A place where nobody dared to go
The love that we came to know
They call it Xanadu

And now
Open your eyes and see
What we have made is real
We are in Xanadu


Man I was outta the country at the time-I think-Thank Gaia!

Alex said...

Obama = the emptiest suit.

Paul Zrimsek said...

If you can keep your head when Wright, your mentor
Is losing his, and blaming it on Jews...

sydney said...

From Sullivan's quote of Joe Klein:

"His demeanor has rendered foolish all the rumors about his alleged radicalism. This guy is the furthest thing imaginable from an extremist."

That's about the silliest assumption you could ever make about anyone. I wonder if Joe Klein gets conned much? ("But he seemed like such a nice person...")

I thought top journalists were supposed to be more sophisticated in their understanding of human nature. Don't they require a certain degree of skepticism to do their jobs well? This is how a republic is lost, when its public is conned by a smooth talker.

Alex said...

Didn't they say to use "don't be fooled by Bush's nice guy demeanor, he's a fascist". But with Obama, 180 degrees.

AJ Lynch said...

I wonder how old Gene Kelly was in that flick?

Triangle Man said...

Alex,

Victoria is still blogging up a storm.

Fred Drinkwater said...

There's a variation on "If" that goes more like this...

If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs,
it's likely you haven't grasped the situation.

Obama is the Butterfly, flitting prettily above the dirty fray.

Marcia said...

"I wonder how old Gene Kelly was in that flick?"

DOB: Aug. 1912
Xanadu: 1980

So 67-68

Smilin' Jack said...

the old-school belief in the four humors.

In this context the word is always spelled humour.

Some things are more important than politics.

Cedarford said...

sean said...
Isn't it unreal, how Sullivan used to rhapsodize about Cheney's male organ, and now has this rather ludicrous love for Obama? But he is never going to go for a breeder like Clinton or Palin.


I was done with "Excitable Andy" two years ago.

-------------------
The military had a bad run in WWI and WWII with generals of phlegmatic nature that they thought made better leaders because they kept their heads and did little or nothing without considerable "reflection", while others were losing theirs (literally).
One infamous moment was when British and Australian forces made it to the top of the ridge commanding the Gallipoli battlefield and urgently called for Royal Marine reinforcements from the phlegmatic Admiral in charge. They were told the Admiral was waiting on his dinner and wanted a good nights sleep before meeting with his staff to discuss the matter. While on the Ottoman side, the decidedly unphlegmatic Kemel Attaturk raged and worked through the night to drag every reservist and cannon within 40 miles to launch a counter-assault.
At about the time Attaturk was killing off the breakthrough Allied contigent of mostly Aussie diggers, and driving them from the high ground, the phlegmatic Admiral was meeting with staff. For a hearty breakfast of tea, scones, and cold bully beef to determine what might need to be done.

This somewhat fits with Obama, who has participated in one national security exercise. While purely informal, one participant, a Republican Congressman, said Obama was calm as heck throughout, but appeared to lack a sense of urgency and hemmed and hawed on making critical decisions.
Because he failed to make decisions in a timely manner, the security exercise spun out of control.
It was a learning experience for Obama, it was said..that the decision-making time frame for an executive is completely different than a court lawyer doing things in relative leisure.

In Obama's defense, he has surrounded himself with people making fast, nimble decisions on the Presidential primaries and the Presidential campaign.

That is hopeful news, because at this point, all polls, and all odds are shifting to him being the likely next President.

-----------------
Paul Zrimsek said...
If you can keep your head when Wright, your mentor
Is losing his, and blaming it on Jews...


From the early 1900s until the late 60s, Jews had set up, funded, and ran institutions, unions, legal arms, and neighborhood power centers to advance the cause of blacks. This beneficent role, they thought, was because blacks were like poorly educated children, unable to manage their own affairs.

When blacks completely shifted their opinions in the 60s, following patterns of de-colonialization, they began systematically ousting Jews from control of groups like the NAACP, the SCLC, the running of local school boards. Jews did not want to relinquish political and economic control of black neighborhoods and national movements and fought back until the weight of black numbers overwhelmed the Jewish political influence and the lawsuits seeking to block black control "because Jews knew best what was good for blacks".

The bitterness of those years of the struggle for black self-determination linger in black communities. And Jewish communities. Both sides still accuse the other of "betrayal, ingratitude, racism, anti-semitism"..

Henry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Henry said...

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and showering praise on you,
If you can trust yourself when pundits love you
But make allowance for their loving too,
If you can glow and not get tired of glistening,
Or hearing songs of praise, don't join 'neath your breath,
Or being preached to, don't admit to listening,
And yet not bore the rest of us to death:

...

If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sentiments ideal and orotund,
You'll get the votes, just keep on being present
And--so it goes--you'll surely be the One!

Kevin said...

Since Sullivan is remotely diagnosing Palin with all kinds of mental ailments, I too diagnose him with bipolar disorder.

Now can we get Sullivan on some medications?

Michael_H said...

Sullivan will calm down when he realizes he's at the wrong end of the media's very long 'I'm gonna get laid by Obama' line.

Sullivan's affliction is known as the Eleanor Clift Syndrome, which was observed during the presidency of W. J. Clinton.

bleeper said...

Eleanor "Biden's no more a plagerist than I am" Clift started doing presidents back when she "covered" LBJ. Obama will just be another notch on her, er, belt...