Orwellian Joe

Why do I even bother blogging about Joe Lieberman? Honestly, there’s no good answer to that question.

Perhaps the sheer extremism of his foolishness and inanity attracts my attention.

And here’s the latest, via Think Progress:

Appearing on ABC’s This Week, Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) used the foiled terror attempts in London to call for greater domestic spying here in the United States. Lieberman said, “I hope these terrorist attacks in London wake us up here in America to stop the petty partisan fighting going on about… electronic surveillance,” in apparent reference to the Senate Judiciary Committee’s subpoenas for documents related to Bush’s NSA warrantless wiretapping program.

He apparently wants the U.S. to be like London, where there are cameras everywhere (which is true, and deeply troubling, and why the U.K. could do with a formal bill of rights) — this is “common sense,” in his view, but what about civil liberties? What about the Constitution? No matter, it would seem. Lieberman has reached a point where he regularly plays the fear card, just like any good authoritarian: Give the government more power, or else the enemy will be upon us. Allow the government to use that power to protect the people, or else the enemy will vanquish the people. But who or what is this enemy? Is it an enemy that requires such a response, that requires that freedom be given up in the name of freedom? Not to dismiss the genuine threat of jihadist terrorism, but the war on terror, such as there is one (however defined), will not be won by turning America (or Britain, for that matter) into a neo-Orwellian state.

But that is too much for Lieberman, too complicated. He would rather play the fearmonger — and not so much for partisan gain (for what is his partisanship now, other than to kiss the collective GOP ass while trying to stick it to the Dems?) but because he actually believes that the Orwellian response to terrorism — or to the threat thereof — is the right one. Which aligns him with many of the world’s worst tyrannies past and present — including that one in Germany back in the ’30s and ’40s.

Aside from this, Lieberman was just plain wrong on a couple of key points. Steve Benen explains at TPM.

Libby Spencer has more over at Cernig’s place.


And, as if to show just how far removed from reality he really is, he said this about Iraq: “The surge is working.” Again, why do I pay attention to such nonsense?

For more on Lieberman’s delusional views on Iraq, see here.



  1. See the reply to Joe.
    - Hide quoted text -


    On 7/3/07, Michael van der Galien wrote:

    I really consider this to be a non-debate. Jason made a call – we, Joe and I, support Jason. Comments are not easily deleted, but there is a limit to what we can accept in a give thread. People have compared me to nazis for instance.

  2. MIchael:

    when one is invited anywhere, it is incumbent upon the host to be fair and gracious.

    Jason was not, and if he was not in my case, SteveK and others are likely going to have similar complaints about similar ungraciousness.

    Let this exchange, however, stand as a reference point, so that in the future, when Jason again deletes a comment, people can know that SteveK and I , and a few others, were treated in this fashion before them.

  3. cosmoetica,

    Still Michael and Jason chose to dance around what you and I are talking about. This is not about abuse of TMV policy… it’s about Jason censoring opposing opinions and covering his own butt.

    Jason’s claim that:

    I have deleted or edited comments merely because they disagreed with me is completely false. I have deleted three comments total, two for vulgarity and one as spam.

    is patently false.

    It was his choosing to “delete” of his own comments rather than reply and apologize for trying to strong arm David Schraub in David’s stoty, We Can’t Do It Alone, that broke this proverbial camels back.

    Just read David’s comments 1 and 2 (ORIGINALLY comments 3 and 4); domajot’s comment 7; and, SteveK’s comment 5 to get a drift of how Jason was coming across and why he removed his own comments.

    Had Jason acknowledged and addressed the concerns expressed by David Schraub (TMV front pager), domajot, and myself, in the posting I linked to above, OR his overzealous actions against cosmoetica comment this issue would not be what it has become.

    I’m sorry that Joe, David, and others involved by this brouhaha haven’t chosen to comment.

  4. The thing is that I can only guess at what might have been said, and if there was something objectionable.

    In my case, it was one word- holes.

    That hardly is in league with the F or N word (and in dealing with adults I feel a bit ‘silly’ to even have to use those euphemisms.

    The very reason euphemisms and entendre exist is because of thin-skinned folk like Jason. That he is now ‘moderator’ is ridiculous, since, he’s the least moderate TMVer around.

    Before bloga even started I used to have comments from emails that I would post on my site. Within a fe months I had to scrap that because people who knew each other (in real life) were posting obscenities and death threats, and I had several threats of lawsuits for libel on things I wrote (which were true, but unprovable- but in no way profane- they merely highlighted some bad personal actions by others), or which others wrote, and which I might have liability for. I consulted a lawyer, who was shocked- again, this is pre-blog (2001). He said take it all down and start from scratch. I did, to avoid lawsuits.

    There simply are people who cannot disconnect themselves from their emotions, and actually get emotionally involved in these sorts of things. Jason, is an obvious example. I was reading a similar brouhaha at Dean’s World between him and Ali Eteraz. Dean is another emotional child.

    Then, if you state that their actions are childish or wrong, you are attacking them. It’s silly. The truth is I know no one at TMV in person, only their online personae. I take NOTHING personally. I’m a rare thing- an ‘adult.’

    But there are too many children. On the plus side, I just reviewed an advanced copy of Steven Pinker’s latest book, and the review will be online tomorrow. I’m interviewing him in September, and he spends a large portion of the book talking about euphemism and taboo language- a whole chapter on Carlin’s 7 words.

    Here is a quote from Pinker:

    ‘While taboo language is an affront to common sensibilities, the phenomenon of taboo language is an affront to common sense. Excretion is an activity that every incarnate being must engage in daily, yet all the English words for it are indecent, juvenile, or clinical. The elegant lexicon of Anglo-Saxon monosyllables that give the English language its rhythmic vigor turns up empty-handed just when it comes to an activity that no one can avoid. Also conspicuous by its absence is a polite transitive verb for sex- a word that would fit into the frame Adam verbed Eve or Eve verbed Adam. The simple transitive verbs for sexual relations are either obscene or disrespectful, and the most common ones are among the seven words you can’t say on television.’

    I’m actually gonna use this post as an example of what he writes about.

    Go to http://books.monstersandcritics.com/ tomorrow, and I would say you should get Pinker’s book. He pisses everyone off because he’s a straight shooter who is not an extremist.

    That Jason did what he did is like a child giving the finger and, again, saying, ‘What did I do?’

    It’s up to adults to discipline people like that, and perhaps a few more dressing downs will shame Jason a bit.

    Gee, shaming, isn’t that a forgotten virtue?

  5. Jason Steck- on Steve K’s linked post:

    ‘I edited nothing. I only deleted my own comments on this thread.’

    Big Brother LIVES, and he’s in Minnesota!

  6. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry that the two of you are still talking about this. Anyway, keep the complaints limited to this thread – if it spoils over into other threads, they will be edited / deleted.

  7. … if it spoils over into other threads, they will be edited / deleted.

    You’ve got a deal Michael… your input and response to the concerns expressed here has been unvaluable.

  8. SteveK

    You can email me at my website. Go to the contact page.

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