Free for All: 12/19/12

What’s on your mind?


99 Responses to “Free for All: 12/19/12”

  1. Alex Wagner is incapable of getting that stupid smirk off her face. These are dark days, and somebody at MSNBC needs to explain this to her.

  2. NewsBreaker‏@newsbreaker
    Obama: If we’re going to change things it’s going to take a wave of Americans…standing up and saying enough, on behalf of our kids

  3. Small favors.
    RIP Judge. … If they had confirmed Bork, Obama would be nominating his third justice and liberals would be the majority

  4. The Beltway Media never ceases to amaze me. This is why people like Joe and I were barking about gun laws last week. Because, by the time FOX and the politicos decided it was time to discuss it, the Beltway Media would manufacture a new crisis or go back to this manufactured “fiscal cliff” crisis. EVERY SINGLE QUESTION has been about the Fiscal Cliff. And close to 70% of Chuck Todd’s program revolved around the “fiscal cliff”.

  5. “Alex Wagner is incapable of getting that stupid smirk off her face.”

    This is EXACTLY what I was talking about Friday. 27 people were dead and she’s sitting there with that silly smirk on her face, politicizing the issue in world record time.

  6. Jake Tapper did ask the President “Where have you been?” regarding gun control and got a smarmy response that The President was very busy the last four years.

  7. Yeah, Andy, I gave Alex a pass on Friday without having seen it. That was a mistake. I’m sure if I had seen her launch right into gun control – especially with that stupid look on her face – I wouldn’t have been comfortable with it.

  8. That’s when I turned on CBS. Alex Wagner is too inexperienced. I mean, she thinks she has to do this cutesy routine and it’s painful at times — especially when she does it during coverage of a massacre or a hurricane that’s destroying Staten Island.

  9. EVERY SINGLE QUESTION has been about the Fiscal Cliff. And close to 70% of Chuck Todd’s program revolved around the “fiscal cliff”.

    Because the nation’s solvency (or lack thereof) will affect the average citizen more on a daily basis than whatever new gun law Obama proposes will.

  10. Timothy Geithner could stop the tax hikes tomorrow and, if he did that, Congress would stop the spending cuts the very next day. It’s a totally manufactured crisis.

  11. “Jake Tapper did ask the President “Where have you been?” regarding gun control and got a smarmy response that The President was very busy the last four years.”

    Obama doesn’t take well to actual questions. So, he just decided to tell everybody how he was busy saving the World.

  12. It’s an adversarial relationship. President’s always get clippy at press conferences; you only notice it when it’s not your guy. Yawn.

  13. ^ Yeah, that’s it. Obama doesn’t have skinner thin than most. And, he’s definitely used to be asking tough questions.

  14. Would you like some cheese with your whine?

  15. What could we discuss three days ago about gun laws that we can’t discuss today? The talk shows these past three days have been filled with conversations on gun legislation. Every one of them. The conversation is taking place.

    Whatever public policy changes we make on gun ownership wasn’t going to be done in a weekend. It will take days if not weeks of hearings before new laws are passed.

    I am simply lost as to why we needed to have a discussion of gun laws in the middle of a tragedy when we were just finding out exactly what happened.

    Didn’t we do something like this after 9/11? Rushed through a flawed Patriot Act that wasn’t properly examined?

  16. Yes, and after Oklahoma City, new laws were predicated on the idea that the attacker was “foreign”. A few years later, we were deporting twenty-somethings who got into minor scrapes with the law, because they came here as babies and weren’t naturalized citizens.

  17. The media has a 72 hour attention span. Once those 72 hours pass, they get back to what they’re comfortable covering because stories like the shooting and the hurricane, while they are major stories, they’re a distraction when you cover politics all the time.

    I totally understand why Chuck Todd spent most of his program covering the Fiscal Cliff. From the viewpoint of a viewer, it’s frustrating having that shoved down my throat. As someone who’s covered politics before, I know that he thinks the Fiscal Cliff is far more important.

  18. Tamron Hall’s show really needs to be renamed. Every other dayside MSNBC program covers more news than “NewsNation” does. The Daily Rundown, Jansing & Co, MSNBC Live with Thomas Roberts, Andrea Mitchell Reports, The Cycle and Martin Bashir all cover a much wider selection of topics than Hall’s show.

  19. The problem with waiting to discuss gun safety is that as soon as the shock of a massacre wears off, the press loses interest; the NRA ramps up their “not one single restriction ’cause slippery slope Obama conspiracy”; and nothing gets done. Something is going to get DONE this time.

  20. Is it just me, or is the fact that Columbine happened during the assault-weapon ban of any significance? I guess not. We just need to DO SOMETHING.

  21. I challenge anybody to tell me one thing, one law, one ban that would have changed what happened last week.

  22. The assault-weapon ban had over 900 exemptions (thank you, NRA bastards). One of them was the Bushmaster-type weapon which didn’t qualify as an assault weapon because it didn’t have a collapsible rifle-butt, bayonet mount, or grenade launcher.

    The point of this new push is to eliminate war weapons which have a rapid-fire capability combined with large magazines. Which, of course, I have explained repeatedly, so how about paying attention instead of slinging some meaningless crap about Columbine.

  23. I don’t think an issue has to be “white hot” for us to deal with. In fact, I’d like it not to be too hot since emotions tend to run over reason.

    Last month I watched the complete news coverage of the JFK assassinaton on YouTube. They have all of CBS’s and NBC’s complete coverage. ABC’s coverage was shockingly bad and incomplete.

    In any case, what jumped out at me was the coolness and deliberateness of the coverage. Very little speculation, no discussion about the political or electoral ramifications or about gun policy or about politics. It was straightforward hard coverage.

    Inconceivable today.

  24. ^^Thanks for that. Discuss it with yourself. I’m done.

  25. That’s how liberals “discuss” things, by the way. Can’t imagine why the rest of us are too stupid to understand.

  26. You asked a question you knew was BS because you don’t believe in gun laws. The guvment’s coming after your guns you just know it slippery slope blah blah blah. NRA apologist bullsh!t.

  27. I completely understand why the media loses interest. For me, when I would be working on story after story after story that all dealt with very important, long-term political issues, I know how frustrating it was to have to cover a major breaking story that falls in that “72 hour cycle”. It might only be in a short term cycle, but that’s a lot of time that I’ve been dragged away from in-depth and investigating reporting. So, I know how someone like Chuck Todd feels. He’s ready to get back to his normal job.

    But in the case of this fiscal cliff, I disagree with this logic.

    This shooting was Columbine 2.0. There’s A LOT of stuff that has come to the forefront that absolutely has to be discussed. The “Fiscal Cliff” is not a long term story. Covering it wall-to-wall at this juncture is nothing short of annoying… especially since they’re not doing a good job covering it at all. They interview politicos all day and think that the overwhelming majority of their viewers know what this stuff means. Well, their viewers don’t because the Beltway Media thinks everyone’s a political science and economics major. Most Americans don’t have any clue how this could affect them and, because of that, they don’t care. It’s boring and it’s annoying.

    Then there’s the way they didn’t cover Hurricane Sandy. I said, for years, that a major disaster like Hurricane Sandy would never get the kind of coverage Katrina or even the 2004 storms got. And it didn’t. If you didn’t watch the news the news until Wednesday of that week, the only way you would’ve known about that hurricane was if you went on Facebook or

  28. I see Laura’s spreading the holiday cheer around today 😀 *ducksforcover*

  29. NRA apologists keep dishing this crap about what an assault weapon is, and why didn’t the ban work better. It has been specifically stated by numerous politicians and opinionators – including many Republicans – that what we’re specifically looking for is a restriction on rapid-fire capability combined with large magazines. Which were not banned at the time of Columbine.

    If you’re not going to have a real conversation about what people are actually proposing, then you’re just a fanatic NRA shill. Your opinion is meaningless.

  30. Yes, let’s all let Joe define what a proper “conversation” is, and watch all the sane commenters drop away. No connection, of course.

  31. Damn, I need popcorn.

  32. Timothy Geithner could stop the tax hikes tomorrow.

    Pray tell: how? I mean, I realize that the rule of law hasn’t meanut much of anything to this Administration, but not even Obama’s biggest haters would dream he’d be that brazen.

  33. No, let’s pretend these weapons were already banned, then ask why nothing changed. That’s not a conversation, it’s propaganda.

  34. savefarris Says:

    In other news, apparently Sam Donaldson is still alive!

  35. I’m a propagandist and a shill for rich people. Keep digging.

  36. “Pray tell: how? I mean, I realize that the rule of law hasn’t meanut much of anything to this Administration, but not even Obama’s biggest haters would dream he’d be that brazen.”

    He can postpone changes to tax withholding amounts until a deal is inevitably made.

  37. You minimize any concern about gun safety in the name of some BS “freedom” you think the constitution grants you to own war weapons. I’m sick of hearing it, and I’m sick of being threatened on Twitter by others with the same belief. One lunatic told me civilians need as much firepower as the military so they can fight the government in a war. That is deeply sick thinking, and there’s WAY too much of it out there.

  38. I know as much about “gun safety” as you ever will, and I’ve never threatened another human being in my life. If you can’t differentiate between me and whatever nutjobs with whom you choose to associate, then you can shove that, too.

  39. ^ This is better than Hardball.

  40. ^I’m getting a tingle down my leg, that’s for sure.

  41. Might just be cramps, though.

  42. savefarris Says:

    He can postpone changes to tax withholding amounts until a deal is inevitably made.

    A deal isn’t the inevitability you make it out to be. Knowing that, Geithner’s not gonna f*#k with withholding rates only to see the deal vaporize and everyone owe a monster tax debt next April. The blowback would be incalculable.

    Besides, this entire administration is built on creating crisises then demanding swift (and liberal) actions to qwench the fires they themselves ignored right up until 5 minutes ago. Geithner’s not gonna try to make it easier to get a deal done because that’s not how this White House operates.

  43. lonestar77 Says:

    The only way to have prevented what happened would be to gather every weapon of every type, destroy them and somehow prevent people from making new ones. This insane jackass went after kids. He was locked in a room with 6 year-olds and a female teacher. Any gun of any caliber whether fully automatic, semi automatic, pump, bolt action, etc. would have done the job the same. The kids were defenseless. It may make you feel better to think that banning some clip or some gun would have changed things but it wouldn’t. It doesn’t take long to eject a clip and insert a new one.

  44. The “people with whom I chose to associate” were fans of @JudgeNap. He tweeted “They’re never gonna take our guns”, so I gently reminded that moron that nobody is threatening to. Then all hell broke loose. Buncha Tea Party Doomsday Prepper secessionist nutjobs.

  45. Good to know.

  46. From Instapundit:

    JOE BIDEN IN 2008: If Obama “tries to fool with my Beretta, he’s got a problem.”

  47. savefarris Says:

    ” I gently reminded that moron that nobody is threatening to. ”

    Joe, meet Shiela Jackson Lee!!

  48. Oh please. Shiela Jackson Lee passing her idea of a gun control bill is about as realistic as Dennis Kucinich becoming President. Try staying within the realm of what reasonable people consider possible. Which is some restrictions on firepower, and better control of gun show and internet sales.

    Even POTUS said he respected the Second Amendment right to own a gun for hunting, sport, and protection. This NRA-fed conspiracy that “they’re coming to take all the guns” is complete bull, and people like Napolitano should stop feeding it.

  49. lonestar77 Says:

    ^ Yeah, cuz our government would never go against the will of the people for “the greater good”.

  50. I kinda know what you guys mean about the Alex Wagner ‘smirk’. Yeah, she does this half smile condescending routine, and has all along during her MSNBC career. In one of the first segments I ever saw with her, she was sitting alongside Chris Hayes as guests on O’Donnell’s show. She was doing the same thing playing off Hayes, despite ostensibly agreeing with everything he said. I remember thinking, who is this Alex Wagner, acting like she knows as much as Chris Hayes forgot today?

    But I figured I, and most regular viewers, had become accustomed to it and fine with it by now. It’s her thing. Her appeal is that confident, effervescent, unorthodox approach to talking about events as conversation starters for her panels. In the segments I saw today, she actually looked like she was trying to be more sober whenever the gun issue came up. I’m not sure that does her any favors.

    Obviously it is bad judgment to leave her on during major breaking news. Phil Griffin may feel successful in proving that they could do election and debate coverage without any pretense of straight anchoring, but he’s remarkably wrong if he thinks that those lines can be obliterated for actual news as well. Still, all of the real ‘news’ of this story was reported during a few hours on Friday. I don’t see why Wagner’s show or tone has to change for days or weeks to come.

  51. And here I was worried Joe wouldn’t have anyone to tell their opinion to without me.

    Remember, he can extrapolate what “everyone” thinks from news stories, “knows” what Conservatives believe based on Twitter, and is sure what Liberal’s won’t do despite one of their elected congresswomen saying exactly that. Some guy on Twitter, is more relevant and worth listening to, than an elected Democrat.

    And on that… we might agree.

  52. Palin sighting! Vapid as ever. A segment with Rove and Morris would have more useful insight.

  53. Oh, and speaking of being threatened… I was once threatened.

    Yeah, some Liberal guy who didn’t like what I was saying.

    I wish I could remember who said that… seems so familiar…

  54. Re: the Jake Tapper question and Obama reply.

    ^^The POTUS does have a bit of a thin skin when reporters ask him snarky questions – and rightly so. The point of Tappers question was very legitimate but the way he asked it was very snarky, bordering on disrespectful. The question was more about showing how tough Tapper is than getting any real answer to his ‘question’.

    The answer was fine if a just bit snippy but I expect Tapper will be waiting awhile before he gets another shot at asking the POTUS a question.

  55. I don’t much care if they legislate weapon magazines to be smaller capacity. It’d be a minor irritant at the target range but really no big deal. I do hope those who push for this understand that the requirement would not make any difference in these situations. If smaller clips will make you feel safer I can live with that, but know that it’s a false sense of security.

    Also, don’t be too surprised if after a new ban is passed that this particular weapon is still allowed. It’s not built to take the high-energy military rounds, the first round of every clip has to be chambered, it can’t “spray” bullets – the trigger must be pulled every time unlike the police version that can “spurt” a few rounds, the barrel length is sufficient to meet general rifle standards… its appearance may be that of an assault weapon but, aside from looks, it functions as a typical high-powered rifle.

    I think everyone intuitively knows that the real factor at play in these shootings is mental health. No one seems to have a plan for dealing with it.

  56. Blue, you’re a liar. I never threatened anyone with violence. I got several such threats from your freedom loving a$$hole gun nuts. Yeah, your boys are real safe with war weapons..

  57. Revisionist history, followed by not understanding the concept. These two deserve each other:

    Greta and Sarah patted FNC on the back for covering Benghazi more than other networks, while neglecting to note that the coverage was all about an intelligence report Susan Rice relayed, and not about what was actually revealed today. That witchhunt was a complete waste of time for Fox and the Republican Party. The likely 2016 Democratic presidential nominee IS HEAD OF THE STATE DEPT., and they completely ignored her. Nice work, people.

    Then the always brilliant Sarah Palin seemed to misunderstand what the criteria for Person Of The Year is. Hitler was one. So was the Ayotollah Khomeini. It’s the biggest mover in news, not “best person”, you dimwit.

  58. I never said you threatened violence, Joe.

    Reading is fundamental.

    Oh, and why are they “my” gun nuts? “My” boys?

    Frankly, the part of your debate that surprises me the most (because I’m used to the rantings, the lies, and cowardly and false attacks) is that you’re not more involved or interested in the mental health side of it. I’d think talking about that side of the argument would be much more your speed.

    But then again, that would mean thinking for yourself. And you stopped doing that long ago.

  59. Yeah, I get your mental health talking point. It’s the right’s diversion from dealing with the proliferation of war weapons. Don’t forget the video games! The reality is I’ve discussed all three, but the only part you notice is the gun issue. Tunnel vision much?

  60. I thought this was interesting today. By Jeffery Toobin, of CNN and the New Yorker.

  61. It’s cute that you now call them “war weapons”. That sounds even more scary, scary, dangerous.

  62. Jeffrey Toobin, in the New Yorker, writing about the 2nd amendment is like Ted Nugent writing about a vegan’s diet.

  63. Better yet, Ted Nugent discussing .. nope, better not say that.

  64. “War weapons” is accurate because they are suitable for extended-fire combat, which is the purview of the military and law enforcement. It’s ridiculous for someone like you or I to be able to buy one.

    The Toobin article is fascinating. You didn’t read it.

  65. I did read it. But, it’s Jeff Toobin in the New Yorker so I discount it. He may be lawyer but he’s a partisan one. I don’t trust what he says because he has an agenda. “War weapons” is stupid.

  66. War weapons available to the public are stupid.

  67. Mark Halperin anchoring Way Too Early? What a joke.

  68. savefarris Says:

    Even POTUS said he respected the Second Amendment right to own a gun for hunting, sport, and protection.

    POTUS says a lot of things that don’t exactly mesh with his actions. You’ll forgive me if I don’t act surprised when he says one thing and does another.

  69. Joe… are you honestly saying you’ve talked (screamed) about the mental health issue as much as you’ve talked (screamed) about the gun issue?


    As for calling them “war weapons”… come on folks, we know Joe isn’t thinking for himself. Let’s not criticize “his” use of that phrase. It’s just what he was told to use, and like a good boy, he obliges.

    Where did you first hear the phrase, “war weapons,” Joe? What have you been reading, buddy?

  70. “War weapons” and “military style weapons” have been used extensively in this debate in the media since Friday. Maybe you missed the part where I said it’s being covered everywhere, and momentum to get these things off the market is on our side. If you think I presented this topic as wholly original on my part, and not part of a larger conversation, you are once again not paying attention. Big surprise.

  71. “Extensively in the media…”

    Like where? And what metric have you used to measure momentum?

    What have you been watching or reading, Joe? This isn’t the toughest question I’ve ever asked you, yet you routinely dodge it. Why is that?

  72. That sound you hear? The tide of history turning. Me, winning. Again. Enjoy the ride!

  73. Because it’s not about fixing anything, it’s about “winning”. Hence the irrationality.

  74. Just think of it in terms of healthcare. They didn’t much care about the details in that, either.

  75. Don’t be so cynical. I like winning on issues that are better for other people.

  76. And there’s nothing irrational about wanting to ban military-level firepower. We’re going to.

  77. Yup… “winning” on issues that won’t actually fix problems, but will make you feel better in the short run.

    Excellent! That’s the way to make things better!

    Short term solutions, for long term problems. WTG, dude.

  78. Thanks. I knew you’d come around. #Winning

  79. “Irrational” describes the constantly evolving argument, and the compulsive insults toward anyone who points out that it won’t accomplish anything. Spare me the condescension.

  80. There’s nothing “evolving” about it. Shut down sales of the rapid-fire large-magazine crap; enforce background checks; and crack down on unlicensed sales at gun shows and on the internet. How hard is this to follow?

  81. And what of those things, would have had any real impact in Newton?

    The kid had multiple weapons on him. If the “rapid fire” one wasn’t available, he would have used the other weapons. Are you going to say that a “victory” is 15 kids, instead of 20?

  82. For God’s sakes, Blue. Have you heard a word anyone has said on this topic? Yes, I would rather have less dead than more. More time between shots, and more time reloading, is more time for someone to stop him before more die. It’s simple math, man. I swear.

  83. So when it’s 15 instead of 20, you’ll say, “The system worked!”

    Hmm… I dunno. For me, that’s not quite good enough. And I’m pretty sure at least 15 parents would agree.

    But hey, maybe we need to check to see if this already happened. I mean, there are already weapons the public isn’t allowed to purchase or own, and had they been used, even more people would have lost their lives. So instead of saying, “20 is too many,” maybe we should just adopt future-Joe’s view, and say, “The system worked! Only 20 children dead this time! Thank goodness we did ‘something.'”

  84. Another brilliant argument from the lunatic gun lobby. It’s been almost a week. I believe that is enough.

  85. What the hell are you talking about, Joe? Is that your standard, “I don’t understand your argument, and am not smart enough to debate back,” response?

    What did I say to make you think about the “gun lobby?” What part of my comment made you think I was encouraging anything from that standpoint?

  86. “War weapons” and “military style weapons”

    These are terms used by people who don’t use guns. None of the weapons available to the general public are “military style”. None. Zip. Nada. Having to pull a trigger for each shot is not “rapid fire”.

    What’s the difference between large and small magazines to the unarmed and helpless? Nothing. Nada. Zip. Practice for a couple days and you can reload a .38 revolver in seconds.

    A ban will not make anyone safer. Who needs such weapons? Doesn’t matter because the “Bill of Rights” is not the “Bill of Needs”. More importantly, the gun debate is a side-show that, whether passed or not will not do anything toward preventing what happened last week. Meanwhile, steps that could be taken that actually would make a major difference are being ignored.


  87. Your insistence that no gun laws should be passed is ridiculous. We’re gonna slow the firing down; we’re gonna make those bastards reload more often; we’re gonna tighten licensing and background checks; and you’re gonna join modern civilization whether you like it or not.

  88. Unless you go house-to-house to confiscate those that already exist, you won’t do any such thing. You can delude yourself all day long, but the reality won’t match. It never does.

  89. And you just assume that any of that will be passed, which is not yet evident. This would be the difference between you and others commenting on the subject. I like to call it “delusions of grandeur”.

  90. No confiscation, but at least it’ll stop. Maybe a generation from now this country won’t be the violent, over-weaponized nightmare it is now. Maybe a generation from now there will be less lunatics talking about arming themselves against the government, and pretending that the Second Amendment grants them an inalienable right to whatever damn weapon of mass destruction they want. Maybe someday we’ll GROW UP.

  91. Delusions of a better country. I choose to believe. Still.

  92. I do not insist that “no gun laws be passed.” I do insist that your understanding of these weapons is sorely lacking. That thirty helpless people cornered inside of a room could be murdered within 70 or 80 seconds instead of only 60 is doing nothing more than going through the motions. A military assault rifle – which are still illegal to civilians – can accomplish the same inside of ten seconds, twenty for a novice who wastes ammunition and has to reload.

    There’s three hundred and fifty million guns in the US, most are owned by the general public. Any possibility of real gun control became a lost cause probably before any of our grandparents were born.

    In my work, and more often than I care to think about, I’ve been on the receiving end of an ambulance rushing a gun shot patient to the trauma centre. I hate justifiable shootings almost as much as I hate the senseless ones. People making all this noise about gun laws that won’t really solve anything makes about as much sense as would me suturing a knife wound on a guy’s shoulder while ignoring the bullet hole in his chest.

    If you’re angered enough to do something in the wake of a senseless tragedy, good! Just don’t waste your efforts on crap that makes you feel good but doesn’t actually accomplish anything.

  93. I don’t believe you. I think you’re a libertarian prepared to fight “the guvment”, and you’re blowing erudite smoke up my a$$ to cover it.

  94. “The guvment” sounds hilariously sophisticated with my accent.

  95. It does sound rather more pleasant that way. “Shall we take the guvment then?” ‘Well I suppose if we MUST. Perhaps a spot of tea first?’

  96. “I don’t believe you.”

    Which means, “Your educated view, conflicts with my emotional and imaginary point-of-view. The people I’ve trusted to think for me, tell me something different, so you must be wrong.”

    At least we all know where you’re coming from.

  97. I know what the deal is, Blue. “I have a right to any damn gun I want, and I’m going to obfuscate by pretending limits wouldn’t make a difference. “Wouldn’t make a difference” is not the reason you guys refuse to do anything, and I’m tired of being lied to.

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