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He'll Be Back

Karl Rove's departure is an affirmation of the physics of presidential politics: What goes up must come down. Rove was the crucial aide in the launching of George Bush. Now Bush is in free fall. There's nothing for Rove to do at this point but take a flying leap (to safety, and surely -- just guessing here -- to a nice slot on Fox News as a commentator, and maybe a regular column in the WSJ, and loads of lucrative speeches to corporate audiences and the annual conventions of such groups as the National Gibbet Association).

He says he's done with politics. But political strategists never go away. They've got the fight in their blood. They dream of poll numbers. They know how the electorate is trending in every congressional district in the country. To give up politics would be like giving up eating, breathing, or lying.

(Has there been a strategist who went cold turkey? Doesn't Pat Caddell still pop up here and there? Ed Rollins? Carville? Begala? I am pretty sure some of them wind up running elections in exotic foreign climes. For generous compensation.)

What jumps out of the Paul Gigot interview is that Rove doesn't perceive that he and his boss have made any mistakes over the past 7 years. Regrets? Hardly a one. It's nice to be always right:

What about that new GOP William McKinley-style majority he hoped to build -- isn't that now in tatters, as the country tilts leftward on security, economics and the culture? Again, Mr. Rove disagrees. He says young people are if anything more pro-life and free-market than older Americans, and that, despite the difficulties in Iraq, the country doesn't want to be defeated there or in the fight against Islamic terror. He recalls how Democrats thought driving the U.S. out of Vietnam would also help them politically. "Instead, Democrats have suffered ever since on national security," he says.

Mr. Rove also makes a spirited defense of this president's policy legacy, sometimes more convincingly than others. On foreign affairs, he predicts that at least two parts of the Bush Doctrine will live on: The policy that if you harbor a terrorist, you are as culpable as the terrorist; and pre-emption. "There may be a debate about degree," he says, "but it's going to be hard for any president to reverse that."

He's less persuasive on Medicare, where he insists that market reforms and health savings accounts are building a "critical mass" of popular support that will make them unrepealable. Yet Democrats are even now trying to kill Medicare Advantage, blocked only by the promise of a veto. If Mrs. Clinton wins in 2008, the Medicare drug expansion may prove to have been all spending and no reform.

He also insists that Social Security reform was worth the failed effort, and that Mr. Bush's ideas will be adopted inevitably by some future president. I ask if, given Mr. Bush's falling approval ratings in 2005 due to Iraq, he shouldn't have pushed for something less ambitious. Not a chance. "You cannot advance on the fronts you want to advance if you're playing mini-ball," he says, once again sounding like Mr. Bush.

Lots of reaction around the blogosphere as you can imagine, such as at DailyKos and The Politico, where we learn that Rove will spend a lot of time supervising his carbon footprint:

'For now, according to friends, Rove will split his time among Washington, where he and his wife Darby are keeping their house; Florida, where they have a resort place that they have put a lot of effort into decorating; and Texas, where their son is in college and they maintain a country house.'


Transcript: Rove talks to the media aboard Air Force One. Denies being "evil genius."


Who was it who said a while back that Rove was not a believer? You know, that he doesn't have the gift of faith? I bring this up only because of Rove's comments at the end of his press avail this morning with Bush:

ROVE: ... I look forward to continuing our friendship of 34 years, to being your fierce and committed advocate on the outside, and to the next journey we might make together.

At month's end, I will join those whom you meet in your travels, the ordinary Americans who tell you they are praying for you.

Like them, I will ask for God's continued gifts of strength and wisdom for you and your work, your vital work for our country and the world, and for the almighty's continued blessing of our great country.


Lots of Rovestorming on Firedoglake.

And here's Arianna: "... does Rove really think that the old "I've got to do this for the sake of my family" line is going to fly? Is he that unaware of how ludicrous that sounds -- how spit-your-milk-back-through-your-nose mockable the cliché has become?"

Now this, from Joshua Green's story in The Atlantic on "The Rove Presidency" (thanks to LittleFish in the boodle):

It's not clear why Bush abandoned the moderate style that worked with No Child Left Behind. One of the big what-ifs of his presidency is how things might have turned out had he stuck with it (education remains the one element of Rove's realignment project that was successfully enacted). What did become clear is that Rove's tendency, like Bush's, is always to choose the most ambitious option in a list and then pursue it by the most aggressive means possible--an approach that generally works better in campaigns than in governing. Instead of modest bipartisanship, the administration's preferred style of governing became something much closer to the way Rove runs campaigns: Steamroll the opposition whenever possible, and reach across the aisle only in the rare cases, like No Child Left Behind, when it is absolutely necessary. The large tax cut that Bush pursued and won on an almost party-line vote just afterward is a model of this confrontational style. Its limitations would become apparent.


Beyond the Front Page dept.

Microsoft wants to rule the world even more than it already does.

Here are the results of the Iowa Straw Poll (yawn): Who the heck is Cox??

[Now, via Federal Document Clearing Houses, comes this excerpt from an NBC interview this morning with Romney, in which Romney deploys his Magic Reagan Cloak:

QUESTION: ...Mike Huckabee was asked if he thought you'd be a risky nominee because of your position -- the way that you've changed your position on abortion. There was a time not so long ago, 2002, when you said that you would support a woman's right to choose. Now you are pro-life. And when asked about it, he said, "If we think that the Democrats won't come and use that against him, should he be the nominee, we are kidding ourselves." What can you say this morning to voters, sir, that will convince them that your positions are real and authentic, as opposed to politically expedient?

ROMNEY: Well, you know, I took exactly the same path that Ronald Reagan took. And Democrats, I'm sure, tried to use everything against him, but it didn't work.

(Now we wait for the first GOP candidate to say, "Governor, I knew Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan was a friend of mine. Governor, you're no Ronald Reagan.")


Now this from Dean Barnett on Hugh Hewitt's blog:

'When all the frontrunners bailed on Ames except for Mitt Romney, the straw poll instantly became a freak show for fried-Twinkee craving political obsessives....

'The Brownback campaign has been a vile little thing, attacking other candidates from way back in the pack, violating the 11th Commandment constantly. Sam Brownback appears to be a deluded man, laboring under the impression that he actually has a chance in this race and that the ends therefore justify the means. Yes, the same Sam Brownback who switched his vote on McCain/Kennedy in a span of minutes to be on the winning side, an act caught for posterity on C-SPAN, actually thinks he has a chance to be the next President of the United States.'


The Space Shuttle has a potentially serious problem. Via NasaWatch, here's an image of the damaged tile.

A quick note on Tiger Woods: I'm a big Tiger fan but have to admit that his victory yesterday at the PGA was

rather undramatic, even with the late charge by Els and Austin. The challengers played great, but started too far back. And they got no help from Woods. In a major tournament the pressure is usually equal to a couple of strokes against par, which is to say, the leader will usually get a little jittery and drive the ball of a sponsor's tent a la Mickelson. But Tiger Woods is different, as Sally J. pointed out the other day. When he's on his game he's a machine, says Ms. Jenkins:

'To properly appreciate Woods's performance here, you better enjoy dictatorships because that's what his reign as the best player in the world has turned into. Woods has reached the point where he can apparently quell an entire field with an imperious look.'

Before Stephen Ames teed off yesterday you could have marked him down for a 6-over-par round. There was zero chance he'd break par. Tiger's playing partner is always lucky to break 80.

In his 13 major victories, Tiger has had to withstand a ferocious challenge only a few times (Garcia way back when, Bob May, and that Masters a couple of years ago when Tiger hit the best shot of all time). Surely Jack had to work harder for his first 13.


Wow: Weingarten and Chatwoman forced to pay for their own polling software! I've had the same problems here on the A-blog, where I've been forced repeatedly to pay for my own valet, chauffeur and sommelier.

By Joel Achenbach  |  August 13, 2007; 8:11 AM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: John McQuaid: Rebuttal of Outlook Rebuttal
Next: Disagreeableness From All Over


I guess we won't have Karl to kick around any more. Also, something regarding a "screen door" comes to mind.

And as for the "Bush Doctrine." I agree that the technical distinction between sponsoring terrorism and harboring terrorist organizations has been greatly reduced. As it should be.

I strongly believe, though, that the odious and noxious idea of preemptive war has been relegated to that dustbin of history. As it should be.

Given the intense rancor and uncertainty over interpreting the events of the past, who in their right mind is going to believe that we can infallibly predict the future?

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 13, 2007 9:16 AM | Report abuse


According to reporting by the Washington Post, Karl Rove is quitting the White House to spend time, perhaps writing a book, in his two cottages in Ingram, Texas, that together total just over 800 square feet? If I told you that today is Christmas, would you hang up your stocking?

Select Kerr County. Enter the info. And you'll see their "home", worth $57k, registered under "River House LLC." Karl and Darby - if you live there, then why is it a company? The property is reported to be a lovely pair of cottages, totaling 814 square feet.

Yeah, right. And Rove wants to be closer to his family? A young college kid needs his papa around? Young Andrew Rove attends San Antonio's Trinity University, according to what this young blogger wrote in April 2006:

The comics are up early this morning. Here's a site with a humorous bit about how Rove quit to be closer to his iPhone. Even the Wiki site has been updated with this morning's news.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 13, 2007 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Actually, there are days when I think the *ideal* time to cut back on my working hours is when my son has left for college.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 13, 2007 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Way off-topic: Is it just me that's totally freaked about the 3.5" gouge in the shuttle tiles?

Can these guys just give up on the teacher thing per Pete's sake? I mean please, take a plumber or something next time!

Posted by: Error Flynn | August 13, 2007 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Error - yes, it's very worrisome. I was listening to NPR this a.m. about it. Don't like the sound of it at all.

I think JA is right. No big conspiracy in Rove's resignation. As awful as I think he is, I don't think he's dumb. He needs to just get out now because there's no way his dreams of a Republican majority for the forseeable future can be salvaged at this point.

I guess it's too much to hope for but I wish that his *retirement* will be burdened with many dark night's of the soul. That man has a lot to answer for in regards to the bitterly divisive country we live in today.

Mudge - should there be an apostrophe in the *night's* And thanks for setting me straight re: Melquiades. I surely mangled that must have been the pre-concert glass of wine muddling me.

Posted by: Kim | August 13, 2007 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Having the kid at college leaves plenty of time for empty nest boinking. Try to bleach that image out of your mind.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Kim.. no apostrophe. If you'd said you hope he never has a good night's sleep... then you'd have the apostrophe.

How were the Allman Brothers? I remember seeing them in Roanoke in 1975. They had a big sheet behind them on the stage that declared in spray paint: "Be Smarter. Vote Carter."

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 9:52 AM | Report abuse

EF: I haven't read or listened to anything regarding the damaged tiles on the shuttle. From what little I've seen and understand about current capabilities, NASA needs to direct the crew to repair the damage. Hopefully the new repair proocol will be effective. Spacecraft reentry of any kind is scary enough.

Mr. Rove's departure, to me, is akin to having the most ill behaved child in a classroom absent. He'll be back, and be just as before. Hopefully the legal system can be used in such a way to compel him to testify about the many misdeeds that have accumulated at his feet.

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps he was not all that fond of his child. Now that the spawn is in college it may just be safe to be home. Heck he just finishing failing at raising one evil spawn.

Posted by: NYC | August 13, 2007 10:01 AM | Report abuse

I should post something about the tile on the shuttle. On the TV news last night they mentioned the possibility of staging a rescue mission with a second shuttle -- as though this was as easy as hailing a cab.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 10:05 AM | Report abuse

I believe I am the new kit causer of all time. I post a long note, and something comes popping out of Joel. BAM!!!!

Hello everyone. Sorry to be a stranger, but time issues caused cuts in certain activities.

Miss you all.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | August 13, 2007 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Joel, I am interested in what they may do to analyze the risk of having a tile problem on the second recovery shuttle? Then there would be, maybe a crew and a half up there and a bunch of us down here creating the largest Estes rocket known to man.

You think they would go up there with a sawsall, a couple cans of spray-on Asbestos and some super glue.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | August 13, 2007 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Random thoughts:

Rove says he reads about thimgs he's alleged to have done, and he laughs. I read about things he's done, and cry.

martooni, wouldn't it be "Guano de Flor"? (I never had Spanish either.)

Maybe Rove is about to become campaign manager of the Cheney for President in 2008 committee.

yello, your 9:51 is going to leave a mark. I'm seriously thinking of throwing the flag on that one and penalizing you 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct.

scotty, whatcha doing in Suthin' Merlin today/tonight? Goin' down to Calvert Cliffs nuke plant? I won't be home until 8 myself or I'd invite ya over for dinner.

Sometimes ya gotta admire the Chinese. When they screw up, at least they know how to take responsibility for it. (Are you listening, Ken Lay? Michael Brown? Paul Wolfowitz? Bill Kristol? You might want to take notes for future reference):

By Edward Cody
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, August 13, 2007; 7:22 AM

"BEIJING, Aug. 13 -- When Mattel Inc. recalled nearly a million toys manufactured by Zhang Shuhong's company, he fought hard to find a way to resume sales to America. They were the lifeblood of his firm, Lee Der Industrial Co., Ltd., and its lucrative share of the export boom driving China's economic growth.

But as Zhang's factories in the southern city of Foshan lay idle, workers started drifting off, fearing they would never start up again. Then Chinese authorities sealed Zhang's ruin by announcing Thursday that he was prohibited from exporting toys until further notice because of the defects denounced by Mattel.

Zhang was found dead in a company warehouse two days later, colleagues said Monday, apparently having hanged himself in despair."

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Dolphie... that was a great rant in the old boodle. You should copy it here. Most of it applies to the potential Rovestorm.

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Morning, morning. I saw the news report about the tile on the shuttle, and it is scary. I'm sure we don't want to see another incident with the shuttle, but don't these folks know there is a problem with the tiles. I mean, enough of them have fallen off during the lift off. Should someone realize by now, hey, this isn't working? I refuse to get a headache about that this morning. Perhaps they're using what they got.

I know most of you are not going to believe this but I'm going to share it with you anyway. A little off topic, but that isn't strange around here.

While sitting in church yesterday afternoon, it came to me that someone was going to enter the church with a gun through the front door. I saw myself leave the sanctuary through the side door, and then exit the church at a rear door(in my mind's eye). Then it came to me, God is able to protect His church, so I toss the thought out of my mind. Later after getting home, I'm watching the news and there has been a church shooting in Missouri. Scary.

Karl Rove has left the White House. Every one has claimed that this guy is the President best friend, and his enabler. Yet he's jumping ship. And I'm sure no one believes he's going home and twiddle his thumbs. Right.

And I'll also bet this guy (Rove) doesn't have nightmares about his involvement in any of those things that have touched our lives, and touched them horrendously. He probably thinks he's a genius.

It's still hot here, and going to get hotter. I can't tell that we had a break from the heat. Of course, the rain was good, and I am thankful. I do hope your weekend was good, and your week even better.

It is so quiet here. I love it.

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Posted by: Cassandra S | August 13, 2007 10:24 AM | Report abuse

The damaged tiles on the shuttle are right beneath the aluminum superstructure of the right wing. IIRC, the initial failure that was the consequence of damaged insulating tiles was on the leading edge of a wing. The damage in question is also in the vicinity of a wheel well. Duh. Fix it.

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 10:25 AM | Report abuse


These Chinese have a long way to go before they catch on to all our business practices. An American factory owner (an endangered species if there ever was one) would declared bankruptcy, sell all the assets to a shell company and then have the shell company hire all the former employees and liquidate the pension plan in the process. He'd be back in business the next day with a big bonus to boot.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Michael, great to hear from you.

I've added some material to the kit.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 10:30 AM | Report abuse

There's nothing to worry about re. the shuttle. A Canadian is on board and I'm sure they have a good supply of duct tape. The really good metal stuff, not the crappy grey crap.

Posted by: Boko999 | August 13, 2007 10:43 AM | Report abuse

If I really wanted to be cruel I would have posted a link to a GoogleImage of Darby Rove, but that is just dirty pool. Spouses are off limits unless they are public figures in their own right.

Just imagine the chandelier shaking that must go on in the Carville/Matalin household. The role play dirty talking alone must peel the wallpaper.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 10:47 AM | Report abuse

there is nothing left for rove to do, so he needs a vacation before the next election cycle. what role he'll have in it is unclear, but he will have a role.

i heard about the shuttle problem right after they docked. what's not clear to me is to what degree repairs are possible by astronauts. can they replace a whole tile? it sounds like they need to.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | August 13, 2007 10:48 AM | Report abuse


I popped by earlier, when there were zero comments on the kit. Didn't think it would be right to post after being absent all weekend. Sorry to have missed the discussions on food-wearing, dog training, crabs, Watkins Glen, etc.

I'm sure Rove has a plan in mind, something that will become very clear to us in time. Sit in a cottage and write books? Not for long.

And when is someone at NASA going to slap themselves on the forehead and say "We've got a real problem here with them tiles!"

Posted by: Raysmom | August 13, 2007 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Maybe it's just me, but would it kill Paul Gigot to refer to HRC as "Sen. Clinton" instead of "Mrs. Clinton"? I mean, she IS a senator, there are only a hundred of them. Give her the title.

Golf- feh. Guess I'm too young to appreciate golf. Let's see, there's lots of guys in funny clothes walking(!) around hitting a little ball (that's not moving!) into a hole. In absolute quiet, no one should cheer God forbid. My mother thinks watching golf is great. She's eighty six.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | August 13, 2007 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Or, Raysmom, "Wow, I could've had a V8!"

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I'd be interested hearing something about tile repairs to previous shuttle missions. Are there flaws that are less likely to cause failure? Or is it a case of no flaw will go unrepaired?

Posted by: dr | August 13, 2007 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Maybe Rove will end up working with Karen Hughes as our Middle East envoys. {sarcasm}They'd be so good at it! {/sarcasm}.

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Boko: Do you mean the Red Green brand of tape? I've heard it rocks.

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 10:55 AM | Report abuse

The "Bush Doctrine" isn't worth the paper it's written on. Bush Jr. and Republicans have all but burned the Constitution, in their attempt to create a Neo-Nazi state. Warrentless spying and access to personal library records? It's like something out of "1984." How about pre-emption? Bush Jr. has definitely made America weaker and and less respected than any other president in U.S. history has. At least more people now know how much influence the NeoCons and groups like PNAC have on America's policies. Unfortunately, the so-called "liberal media" hasn't been doing its job for quite a while, and have utterly failed to report the real reasons why America went to war with Iraq in the first place. Of course, it had nothing to do with 9-11 or Saddam, and everything to do with multi-millionaires/billionaires like the Bushes trying to obtain a monopoly on Iraqi oil.

On domestic issues, Bush Jr., Rover and co. have done nothing except promote their radical social agenda, whose mantra is, "Uhhhhhhhhhh, ignorance is bliss."

Aside from being in the White House when 9-11 happened, and then, er, attacking the wrong country, Bush Jr.'s legacy of divisiveness, dogmatism and populism, is nothing for Rover to brag about. The 30% or so who support the president are the radical rightwingers who would support him under any circumstance. For the other thinking 70%, there's still 2008.

There's optimism and there's pigheadedness. Dems took Congress last year because the majority of the country is sick and tired of the Republicans' corruption, cronyism, partisaniship, indolence, and extremism. The very fact that centrist and social-conservative Dems did very well in the elections--proves that point. If Karl Rove had been more concerned about improving America, instead of winning elections by any means necessary -- perhaps he wouldn't be stepping down in disgrace. But more importantly - he wouldn't be such a reviled man outside of hard-right Republican circles.

Posted by: BlueDog | August 13, 2007 11:03 AM | Report abuse

The Rovestorm has started. *Headed for the bunker with the Cheez Its*

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 11:09 AM | Report abuse

You are 100% right. And with that I'm taking a case of Fredo® Chili Cheese Flavored Corn Chips down to the bunker, because I think it only heats up from here. Like tornadoes in Brooklyn, RoveStorms hit hardest when they are least expected.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 11:11 AM | Report abuse

TBG - The Allman Bros. concert was great. LOTS of interesting people. It was a perfect evening for an outdoor concert. Derek Trucks' guitar riffs were quite literally mesmerizing, not to mention that he is cute, cute, cute! Or in the language of today's youth, hot, hot, hot. See, I'm trying to banish yellojkt's unfortunate 9:51 visual.

Posted by: Kim | August 13, 2007 11:12 AM | Report abuse

jack beat me to the steps. Scotty, are the spare keys still hidden in the flower bed?

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Isn't Derek the one married to Susan Tedeschi? I thought he had his own band.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 11:17 AM | Report abuse

As for Tiger

I'm sure some that call his recent victory dictatorship, others just might call it, "kicking butt". Big time. And I cannot tell you one thing about the game of golf. Not one little thing. I know absolutely nothing about golf. Just know it involves a ball, a tiny ball.

Posted by: Cassandra S | August 13, 2007 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Kim: My bro caught the same show in charlotte over the weekend. He said that it was sad to see Jaimoe's physical condition and that Derek Trucks could really wail. See you in the bunker. Oh, and please bring some Dean's French Onion dip.

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Yes, yello, I believe he is married to Susan Tedeschi. She's wonderful as well, altho I've got nothing on how cute she may or may not be....

I think he had his own band when he was younger, he became quite well known as a guitarist at a very young age. He can't be any older than 28-30 now.

Posted by: Kim | August 13, 2007 11:20 AM | Report abuse

response to: (yellojkt | August 13, 2007 11:11 AM)

Yeah, Rove's leaving the White House and DeLay leaving Congress seem like good things at first. But not necessarily. In many respects it's better to have them in public life, where they're more visible. Once they start getting behind the scenes in Repub "think" thanks, the lobbyist game, etc. there's less coverage and accountability of their evil doings.

Posted by: BlueDog | August 13, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Yeah.. but this time the Rovestorm winds will likely be blowing the same direction as ours.

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Bluedog's right... it's a little harder to subpoena the Rove family AOL account.

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 11:24 AM | Report abuse

I'm also picturing the gang at the White House just howling about using the term "spend more time with his family."

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Joel, TGB!!!!

Thanks for the kind words. It is way too long to plop it in this boodle. May it rest as a Bush-like period on the the last boodle.

BlueDog, I am wondering if we (you and I) are doing a disservice to our causes by focusing on "often handy" labels. I think we need to focus on the fact that, in the past and maybe more true today, you can go issue by issue and solution by solution, and get a large majority supporting proactive federal actions, but then lose an election to voters who sacrifice those all important issues for soft "American Pie/"Let's creat an America that never was" spin issues.

We all have a tendency to be easily swayed to take the "eye off the ball" when it comes to voting our own personal values.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | August 13, 2007 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Yes, but jack, did he say if he thought Derek was cute?

Posted by: Kim | August 13, 2007 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Here's one for the Hippy
Karl Rove Arrested

Now that's what I call a link.

Posted by: Boko999 | August 13, 2007 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Last night's show was not as spectacular as it was Saturday. There was a thin cloud cover last night and I only saw about 20 in 2 hours. Still it was quite nice sitting at the overlook enjoying a summer night.

Had neighbors over for crabs and it went well, although as the host I was constantly busy.

One neighbor less then a half a mile away said he had a 400 lb Black Bear, take down his bird feeders. He said and I quote" a Chipmunk scared the bear away"

Off to Baltimore to catch Ravens/Eagles game tonight.

Posted by: greenwithenvy | August 13, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Susan Tedeschi has an Eeyore sticker on her guitar which just about defines cute. She had to overcome severe hardship, including a Berklee College of Music degree and being heir to a grocery store chain fortune, to establish her bona fides as a blues singer channeling the throaty rasp of Janis Joplin.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of great shows, we drove up to a ridgetop at one of our regional parks last night and watched the Perseid meteor shower for a couple of hours. The sky was very clear, and the 50 or so people there made is sound like a 4th of July show, with all the 'oohs' and 'aahs'. Fun times!

As to Tiger, we discussed this yesterday. My boyfriend contends that Tiger actually has a much tougher time than Jack did. Tiger has to play a much deeper pool of talent - golfers from all over the world (isn't Ames from Trinidad-Tobago?) than Jack ever did. In any event, my favorite is John Daly - the anti-Tiger in every way!

Posted by: Slats | August 13, 2007 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Oh, that's great. Just great. I was just hours away from completing a story with Mr. Rove (as usual) a central charactor, and he up and quits. That's was procrastination does to you. Let this be a lesson for us all. OK, I'll try to get the story done this week. But it just won't be the same.

Posted by: CowTown | August 13, 2007 11:42 AM | Report abuse

off topic - if romney does win the republican nomination, i'm so looking forward to audiences waving flip flops.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | August 13, 2007 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Slats Stephen Ames is from Trinidad, but married a Canadian (from Calgary) and has since taken Canadian citizenship - and we are very happy he did!

Tiger is an immense talent by I am an old Lee Trevino fan, I really admire athletes with talent and who can entertain.

Posted by: dmd | August 13, 2007 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Oh, Boko, you're such a tease. They have a name for people like you.

Bunker's been open for business since sunrise, when I broke the news. FedEx and UPS guys have already come by for the morning pickups, and Dominos has made a delivery already: two pizza supremes. We're about to do the lunch orders momentarily.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 11:50 AM | Report abuse

"If you harbor a terrorist, you are as culpable as the terrorist." This, according to Rove, is the immortal part of the Bush doctrine. No one has informed Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.

Posted by: Con Foozed | August 13, 2007 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Apparently the *real* Rovestorm is here...

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Weingarten's chat has reinstituted the poll.

Posted by: omni | August 13, 2007 12:17 PM | Report abuse

I think I joined the Boodle shortly after the very first Rovestorm. IIRC, WaPo didn't have comments on the news stories back then. It sure makes for a nice lightning rod now. I'd hate to be the guy with the finger on the delete key today trying to figure out where on the Rovestorm swept beach is the line in the sand between acceptable discourse and comments that are "libelous, defamatory, obscene, [or] abusive".

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Paul Gigot's editorial simply amplified Rove's view of what precipitated his departure. Read instead the fine work of Joshua Green in the September issue of the Atlantic, "The Rove Presidency." This is the best analysis of Rove's role in George Bush's failed presidency yet written, bar none.

Posted by: LittleFish | August 13, 2007 12:21 PM | Report abuse

This ain't no way to treat your wife:

Darby about Karl's competitive personality: "Even in croquet he'd be hitting my ball so far I was crying on vacation."

This website (link, above) seems to be more accurate and more detailed than the Daily Kos report about the extent of the Roves' property in Ingram, Texas. Apparently one of the cabins is 814 sq ft, the other is 494 sq ft. That clarified, I still think that you can bet the ranch and all the cattle (and all the mineral rights on the ranch) that Rove is not going to spend much time, if any, in lil 'ol dinky Ingram (west of Kerrville).

Darby is two years older than Rove, a breast cancer survivor. Apparently, according to this site, Rove's first mariage was short-lived, the guy just not around the house very much.

Posted by: Loomis | August 13, 2007 12:23 PM | Report abuse

The Atlantic article is premium content. I wonder if Joel has any pull with Andrew Sullivan and could get him to put it outside the firewall.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 12:31 PM | Report abuse

C'mon, Loomis, be a sport. Ya gotta admire a man who can live the simple, Thoreau-like life of contemplation and moderation in a nice, comfortable 814-square foot shack without such modern fripparies such as, ya know, indoor plumbing, or windows, or furniture, or electricity, of cooking appliances and utensils, or the ability to refrigerator food stuffs, etc. etc. I've always thought Rove had certain monastic, monk-like qualities. I mean, really, you don't suppose that when Darth Vader goes home at the end of the day in Star Wars XBLMCIII: R2D2 and CP3O's Excellent Adventure, he just takes off his helmet and cape and kicks back in his 19-room mansion with the billiard room, the conservatory, the music room, the gardening room, the spacious industrial-quality kitchen, and the 700-square foot living room with double-wide staircase and cathedral ceilings, do you? Nah. Your true evil genius just goes back to his little bat cave and hangs upside down from a closet rod all night until he thinks up his next evil deed. Leisure and trechery generally don't mix.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Cool Loomis. For a second there, I had a feeling that your last line should have been 'that's a good thing.'

I found this significant.
"Although Karl Rove attended several colleges (University of Utah, the University of Texas at Austin and George Mason University), he never graduated from any of them." Maybe he likes jumping the boat, or maybe he's a little ADD?

Posted by: dr | August 13, 2007 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Derek Trucks has played with Eric Clapton, too - I think he was with him on the most recent tour, and at Crossroads a few weeks ago. I love slide guitar, and the Allmans - should give him a listen, I guess.

Rove - good riddance - but yeah, I'm afraid we'll hear from him more than ever.

*waves to DM and Slats!*

Oh, and I had another Boodle dream - this one involved bc sending me a book, urging Curmudgeon and Martooni to do something. Bizarre - this must stop.

Posted by: mostlylurking | August 13, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Come to think of it, perhaps a photo spread of Chez Rove may soon appear in Bitter Gnomes and Gardens magazine.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Just e-mailed myself the Rove article & the one on Gerson, but the way they've set up the links makes it impossible to put them here without my name.

If you'd like an e-mail copy (tonight), let me know which you'd like.

Posted by: dbG | August 13, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Looks like the shuttle tile problem won't end up as a Big Deal, but the time and effort needed to inspect and (sometimes) repair tiles eats into the already limited time that astronauts have available to do anything other than caring for the shuttle. The International Space Station seems to be a model of reliability, but has been scaled back enough that its main purpose seems to be to serve as incredibly expensive housing for its housekeepers.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | August 13, 2007 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Haman has left the building.

Posted by: JB | August 13, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

One of the reasons Rove kept college jumping (other than avoiding the draft) were, ironically enough, his duties on the staff of College Republicans.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Mudge writes:
C'mon, Loomis, be a sport. Ya gotta admire a man who can live the simple, Thoreau-like life of contemplation and moderation in a nice, comfortable 814-square foot shack without such modern fripparies...

See for yourself, kiddo. The Rove shacks are on one end of this resort property. I see the resort has an opening the night of our wedding anniversary on the 19th, but it requires a two-night stay. Loomispouse would go ballistic to think I'd picked a get-away spot just to snoop around.

Posted by: Loomis | August 13, 2007 1:02 PM | Report abuse

dbG, thanks for reminding me about the potential Gerson scandal. Gerson sure got lucky that the Rovestorm took a lot of the spotlight from him. Wonder what if anything the WaP opinion/outlook staff are gonna do about him now?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Mrs. Rove, according to that link from Loomis earlier is on the board of directors of the 'Lodge'

How so yjkt?

Posted by: dr | August 13, 2007 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Not if I have any editorial control, Mudge.

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 1:08 PM | Report abuse

We're among the headliners on the front page, top o' the column.

Kim, my bro didn't mention cute. Just that he can make his instrument REALLY sing. I think he said "...kicks *you-know-what*...".

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 1:11 PM | Report abuse

The Gerson story (which is also premium content on The Atlantic. If I weren't so lazy I'd take the trial issue offer just to get temporary online access) doesn't seem to have legs in my mind. It's waaay too inside baseball.

I've watched enough episodes of West Wing to know that the speechwriter's bullpen is an odd mix of collaboration and back-stabbing. Nothing seems to pin Gerson to openly stealing something that didn't exist outside the rooms he was in charge of.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, the Outlook staff, of which I am a part at the moment, does not have any interaction with, knowledge of, or contact with Mr. Gerson, just so's you know. Outlook is separate from the Editorial Page operation.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Backboodling, and I must say...

Weemoway? Weemoway? Mudge, Wilbord how could you. Now I'm gonna have a tune cootie all day.

Nice work, Mudge on the back story to the song.

Posted by: dr | August 13, 2007 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Ah, thanks for that correction, Joel. I wasn't quite sure where the boundaries were in Outlook versus Edit Page. (I know about the line between editorial page and news, though.) (But hey, what's the office scuttlebutt? You can tell me; I won't tell a soul...)

So, Loomis, you're telling me that Rove essentially lives in (and worse, votes from) a Texas motel room?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Slipping in this garden note to 'Mudge about a boodle-quote from Henry Mitchell. HM does not think black-eyed Susans are as lovely as say, other flowers. So this is a question of personal aesthetics.

This is the HM quote from _One Man's Garden_:
ure, is why people grow them. Can't think of any other reason."

I sorta agree, in this way. I do not lay awake at night and dream about black-eyed Susans as I might the lovely nodding lily of Korea (Lilium cernum) or owning a hedge of old roses, including Madame Hardy, Great Maiden's Blush, Lady Banks, or taking a nap in a bower of pinxterbloom native azaleas.

But the homely sturdiness of black-eyed Susans has a peasant and stolid beauty, deserving a place in our garderns.

Now, to connect the kit. A Rovian garden
could begin thusly:
Ageratina (snakeroot)
Helleborus foetidus (stinking Hellobore)
Convolvulus (bind weed)

But Mudge, Wilbrod serves on the editorial board of _Gnome and Garden_ and will never permit a Rove piece.

Posted by: College Parkian | August 13, 2007 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Rove will find some way of perpetuating his villainy. He thinks it is his duty.

On Diane Rehm last week it was pointed out that having a conversation with anyone outside the US includes any help desk, such as in India. So anyone who ever used such help is now subject to warrantless wiretap as well as data mining. What was not mentioned, but I assume, is that anyone using such help desk is also subject to advanced NSA spyware being placed on their computer, without warrant. Don't you love it?

Pondering Ron Paul's near 10% showing at the straw poll. Interesting, to say the least. Also pondering a hypothetical Gore - Obama ticket. It has the "don't kill me, or look who'll be President" advantage they all strive for. And other good things to say about it also.

Posted by: Jumper | August 13, 2007 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I didn't mean to sound defensive in my earlier comment. The editorials and op-eds do appear in the Outlook section but are not under the supervision of the Outlook editor, who works on THIS side of the news/editorial firewall.

Your question is a good one: Will the Editorial folks do anything about Gerson? I have no idea. Haven't spoken to a soul about it. But fyi, my reading of that Peter Baker story indicates that Gerson isn't accused of anything that constitutes plagiarism, just that his close colleague thinks he was a publicity hound. That's not a firing offense in this town (otherwise half the city would be out of work).

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I added to the kit, fyi.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Correct, although your garden idea is so brilliant, we could do a piece on
"Gardens of Evil" to discuss landscaping ideas that reflect the owner's personalities.

We could also include reviews of the best gnome and garogoyle suppliers, as well as folk carvers that specialize in evil-looking sculptures. And we could include another mini-article on the eternal question: wood vs stone?
Wood, of course, is great if you plan on going up in flames and smokes when you're finally cornered by the forces of good and won't go without a fight, bwa ha ha.

Dang, this magazine idea could actually be workable ;).

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 1:52 PM | Report abuse

It is common lore that George HW Bush kept a hotel suite in Houston as his official address thru his vice presidency and presidency for legal and tax reasons. Rove seems to have picked up on the same strategy. The same shenanigans affect Cheney's residency in Wyoming where for years he officially carried Texas as his home until that pesky Constitution got in the way.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 1:54 PM | Report abuse

I agree that "Bush's Brain" is unlikely to simply disappears into private life. In his interview with Gigot, Rove revealed that he is into the 2008 campaign, that he believes his party can hold on to the White House, and even how to prevail: continue to divide the congressional Democrats (he mentions FISA)and go after the "fatally flawed" likely Democratic Party's presidential nominee (perhaps swift boat her?). I agree,too, that he may want to spread his message via a column and/or political talk show. I posted on this at:

Posted by: Brigitte N. | August 13, 2007 2:01 PM | Report abuse

>until that pesky Constitution got in the way.<

An affliction that no longer seems to bother them, yello.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse

"I've had the same problems here on the A-blog, where I've been forced repeatedly to pay for my own valet, chauffeur and sommelier."

I've never been paid for my sommelier services. Mudge, has Joel paid for your valet services? bc, do you get paid as chauffeur?

My second reaction upon hearing of Rove's resignation was "Oh crud. The boodle's going to be on-topic today." Although CP did masterfully weave in a bit of gardening.

Posted by: Raysmom | August 13, 2007 2:06 PM | Report abuse

So, Loomis, you're telling me that Rove essentially lives in (and worse, votes from) a Texas motel room?

No...well, maybe...kinda...

Hierholzer spent more than three weeks investigating the claim, which centers around Karl and Darby Rove's status as property owners and voters in Kerr County Precinct 4. The sheriff said Wednesday that he was asked to investigate whether the Roves falsified their application to transfer their voter registrations to Kerr County in 2004.

The Roves address for voter status is listed as Texas 39, west of Ingram, where they own two small houses at River Oaks Lodge, which operates as a bed-and-breakfast. Hierholzer said the question that had to be answered was whether the Ingram property could be considered the Roves' residence or if their house in Washington, D.C., is their home.

"The Roves own real property in Kerr County, wherein they have a small residence containing personal belongings," Emerson said. "The residence is suitable for habitation. The Roves sold their Travis County home in June 2003 and applied to transfer their voter registrations to Kerr County in April 2004."

Hierholzer described Rove, whom he spoke to by telephone, as cooperative during the investigation.

"On the date he signed the (voter) application, what was his intent?" Hierholzer said his question was concerning whether Rove intended to make Washington, D.C., his residence. "He said his intention was to return here to Kerr County."

According to Emerson, the Texas Election Code defines residence as a place of habitation to which one intends to return after a temporary absence.

"The facts indicate that Mr. and Mrs. Rove are Texans living in Washington, D.C., during Mr. Rove's service to the federal government," Emerson said.

"The feeling at the River House is pure relaxation," says the Web page for River Oaks Lodge, which appraisal records show the Roves bought in 1997.

Records indicate the Roves divided the site and sold the main lodge, a 3,863-square-foot structure, and 0.72 acres in 2003. The new owner is listed in county tax records as Estadio Partners LLC, of which Darby T. Rove is listed as a director.

Kathie Thomas, one of the lodge's new owners, declined comment when asked how often the Roves stayed there.

"I'm not going to discuss anything," she said.

More from the same link:

The two small stone cottages owned by Rove and wife Darby are part of a bed and breakfast complex overlooking the Guadalupe River outside Ingram.

When the Roves aren't there--which locals say is most of the time--they are rented to guests of nearby River Oaks Lodge, which the Roves once owned as well.

The nearest neighbor, Bill Petty, estimated he'd seen Karl Rove there about five times since 2000, mostly near holidays.

"We see him out walking around getting a signal on the cell phone more than anything," said Petty, 65.

Former lodge manager Linda Day said Rove had visited "infrequently" in the past year but declined to be more specific.

Posted by: Loomis | August 13, 2007 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Karl Rove isn't going to disappear. He's like Stefano di Mera, or the T-1000 in Terminator 2, or litter in the catbox: virtually indestructible, unpleasant and/or dangerous, and guaranteed to come back...

Posted by: byoolin | August 13, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Joshua Green's comments about the difference between running a campaign and running a government ring true. As I recall, this was the same criticism levied against Erlichman and Haldeman. They simply brought their philosophy of dirty campaigning to the White House in the same way that Rove brought his polarizing style.

Heck, I think even Clinton's team might have sometimes confused the White House with the Campaign Trail. It seems that as long as all successful candidates insist on "rewarding" their campaign staff with positions in the government, this problem will remain.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 13, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

I see Weingarten has once again allowed himself to get sucked into the maelstrom of morbid philosophical speculation. I'm getting a little worried about him. Oh well. At least he has a dog.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 13, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse


Pardon the response delay, but yer darn close there, pardner. I'd come over too, if I had my own car.


Posted by: Scottynuke | August 13, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Question 4 of Weingarten's poll is the basis for the Edward Albee play "The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia?" which played DC a few years ago and was also staged recently on Broadway.

The fifth question is clearly a cry for help requiring an intervention.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

And Weingarten discussed questions 1 and 2 in last week's chat. So we know what he thinks the "right" answer is.

Broadway play or not, #4 is intriguing. I actually imagined myself having that conversation with a neighbor and thinking about what I would do. I'm not sure I could tell anyone because a) I might not be able to stop laughing and b) they probably wouldn't believe me. But I'd at least tell Raysdad. He likes a good laugh, and there is the attorney-client-like privilege between spouses wherein they're sworn to secrecy, right?

Posted by: Raysmom | August 13, 2007 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Duchovny has a new show -- says there's lots of nekkid people.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 3:12 PM | Report abuse

I'd probably at least say to the wife, "Gosh, he spends a lot of time with that goat, doesn't he?" And yes, I'd definitely laugh in private.

However, if the goat seemed unhappy or abused otherwise I'd probably put in a word to animal control.

It could be unlikely, I don't exactly know a lot about bestality, but you never know if it could progress to S&M caprices...

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 3:12 PM | Report abuse

And not getting into the fact that keeping a goat is probably against county ordinances. Maybe you could disguise her with a nice dress and hat. "Gee, honey, have you seen Jim's cousin Sylvia? Maybe I'm being uncharitable, but there's something not quite right about that girl."

Posted by: Raysmom | August 13, 2007 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Bestiality is usually considered de facto animal abuse regardless of the level of commitment or consent. I have no idea who is guarding the public morals on this front now that Santorum is gone.

I bought a house from a guy that was keeping some goats in the backyard. I accidentally let the kid in the house during one lookover. He was quickly caught and taken back to mama. After closing, I closely read the covenants and livestock was clearly excluded.

According to WaPo's OFF/beat blog, the goat issue is more common than I would fear:

'And while we're on the subject of hard-to-live-down excuses, Arthur Lawton of Pierce County, Washington, stands accused of having sex with a goat -- but Lawton says he was just "trying to milk it." Now, that's dedication! Lawton works at the Eatonville's Pioneer Farm Museum, where the incident took place last May. The Associated Press reports that he is "the second person charged in the county since the Legislature made bestiality a crime in response to the fatal injury to a man having sex with a horse in Enumclaw."'

But at least this one ended happily:

Pet goat and owner were reunited because snipped goats weren't what the thief wanted. Spay and neuter your dogs and cats and goats.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Raysmom, I have never been paid money for my chauffeurage, but I'm open to the idea.

To be fair, I have been compensated in other ways.

I'm chauffeuring someone this upcoming weekend, come to think of it...

Reposted from this morning:

"Seriously, though.

What does a political gun, er, operative of Rove's caliber, do next?

I note that his son (an only child) is 18 years old, and would likely be heading off to college at this point. No changing diapers or teaching his son to read or taking kids to soccer practice for Mr. Rove, I should think.

Perhaps it's rude of me to throw water on the idea that Mr. Rove is simply going to retire, but the few players I know who've decided to retire start to get itchy when they feel like they're "out of the game" for very long. Pretty soon they start thinking about a comeback, thinking that they're not *done* and that they can Do it Again.

Someone will call at the right time, with an intriguing offer, and he'll be back, like Rumsfeld, Michael Jordan, and Joe Gibbs, just to name a few.

Sometimes it's as simple as "we're putting the band back together" (noting that Jeb Bush will only be 59 in 2012 and 63 in 2016)."

"How about Karl hosting a competitive cooking show on Fox?

'Rove's Kitchen'

Oh, @#$%, oh, @#$%, oh, @#$%."


Posted by: bc | August 13, 2007 3:35 PM | Report abuse

This family lost their case to keep their pet goat:,0,2914928.story

It seems in Bawlmer, a tenth of an acre doesn't cut it for a goat.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 3:37 PM | Report abuse

what's all this crap about how the democrats tried to pull out out of vietnam for political advantage and its hurt them ever since? I was around then, and never heard a word from anyone on either side of the spectrum that we were pulling out of vietnam for the democrat's political advantage. I seem to recall the Republican Party being in power, some guy named Nixon, when the pullout was done?

Revisionist history for poltiical advantage -- gotta love it.

Posted by: charlie | August 13, 2007 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Joel, they keep tinkering with the Rove headline on the WaPo home page, and the current one says: "Rove Steps Away From Political Career." I think I'd argue that is inaccurate, or at best speculative. Yes, he's leaving the White House--but we have no reason to believe he's leaving his political career. He could become a consultant, campaign manager, whatever. We don't know WHAT his new career will be. He's only leaving the White House. (We should all be so lucky he's leaving his political career!!)

I'm not interested in seeing Duchovney nekkid. His wife, the delectable Ms. Tea Leoni, yes indeedy. (The premier is tonight, BTW--10:30 p.m. on Showtime channel.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 3:43 PM | Report abuse

And exactly what part of the horse is the Enumclaw. Sounds like it would hurt.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 3:43 PM | Report abuse

bc IS an awfully helpful fellow, it's true...


Posted by: Scottynuke | August 13, 2007 3:43 PM | Report abuse

GW Poll #4 question reminds me of the set up of about 500 Texas Aggie jokes, none of which can be repeated here. I answered "no", (what goes on in the barn, stays in the barn.)

Posted by: kurosawaguy | August 13, 2007 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm quite proud of quickly we got off topic from Rove to unspeakable acts with goats.

It seems quite fitting somehow.

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I saw that, too, Charlie, and smoke started coming out my ears. But I was pretty ticked off by that point anyway, so it kinda faded into the background. I'm hard-pressed to see how it was to the Dems advantage to be shot at at Kent State, tear-gassed in Chicago, divide the Democratic party in half, and loose the elections in 1968 and 1972. We must not have done something right.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Check to see if "Unspeakable Act With Goats" is still available as a boodle handle.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 3:54 PM | Report abuse

"I'm quite proud of quickly we got off topic from Rove to unspeakable acts with goats."

And the difference is....?

Posted by: Raysmom | August 13, 2007 3:55 PM | Report abuse

This is a comment-maximizing strategy I forgot to list yesterday: you are really on a roll when you can get people to post their comments from OTHER blogs/chats/discussions on YOUR blog.

Joel, I really think you should bring this up at the meeting, if they EVER try to mess with your "oeuvre." Your "chef d'oeuvre," I might even say.

Posted by: kbertocci | August 13, 2007 4:01 PM | Report abuse

"Unspeakable acts with Rove" is actually a Googlenope...

Posted by: Scottynuke | August 13, 2007 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps that's not surprising, what with 82 pages of comments on the Rove article...

All his acts have been spoken, it seems...

Posted by: Scottynuke | August 13, 2007 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Sure, you former roomie gets paid a boatload of bucks and gets to hang around nekkid people. However, you are making the World a Better Place. And you get to hang out with us.

'course we're not nekkid. At least I hope not.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 13, 2007 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I suspect Rove's been too busy running things to have a nice retirement. Maybe he should join Linda Chavez's family of political causes.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | August 13, 2007 4:17 PM | Report abuse

The goat is prettier, Raysmom?

By the way.. was back-reading Gene's chat.

"Rochester, N.Y.:... You, Dave Barry, and Joel Achenbach (sic) are just about the only three newspaper people whose writing genuinely amuses me. And you all used to work at the Miami Herald...

Gene Weingarten:...Dave taught Joel and me a lot about being funny."

Now, given Gene's sense of humor I'm wondering EXACTLY how this teaching was going on, and whether the movie would be aptly called

a) The Prime of Mr. Dave Barry
b) Goodbye, Cow Chips
c) Mr. Barry's Flatus
d) Stand-up and Deliver
e) Dangerous Humor
f) Dead Humorists' Society
g) To Sir with Slovenliness
h) The Satrical Worker
i) Nonchalance Man
j) Music of the Armpit
k) The Pottymouth Kid
j) Slack bored Bungle
l) A Mohel and the Bris
m) Up the Down Crossword
n) Caffeine on me

(Bonus points for recognizing all the teacher movie titles thus parodied).

I wonder which title Joel would vote for.

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 4:19 PM | Report abuse

No bonus points for movie titles, Wilbrod. Just too easy.

Posted by: Yoki | August 13, 2007 4:24 PM | Report abuse

My son and I watched 'The History Boys' this weekend. I hope Dave's teaching techniques didn't inspire that one.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 13, 2007 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Yes, they're all easy, although I wasn't sure l and n would be immediately familiar.

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 4:40 PM | Report abuse

The Hysterical boys would be a good one, Yello. Whether Dave's peep-agogy deserves such a comparsion is not for me to say.

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Joel, I seem to recall that this morning your blog entry led off with a comment about how "spending more time with family" is a funny reason to leave a job when your kid is away in college already.

I'm sure I'm not the only one of your faithful readers who is wondering what happened to that perceptive (but, ahem, inflammatory) remark.

Posted by: ruminant | August 13, 2007 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Speak for yourself, RD.

You never can tell when someone's Boodling naked.

That's part of the fun, isn't it?

BTW, great line from Rove today:
"'I'm Moby Dick,' he said,"

I think Mudge would say that he's at least partially correct.


Posted by: bc | August 13, 2007 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Well, it's taken two years, but finally the bestiality story made it to the Achenblog:
Sigh. Enumclaw (EEE-num-claw) is about 45 miles southeast of Seattle - on the way to Mt Rainier (one of the ways, that is).

I went out and bought Jane Austen books, knitting books, a book of short stories in Spanish with the English translations, and yarn. Beautiful sunny, blue sky day here - supposed to rain later in the week.

Posted by: mostlylurking | August 13, 2007 4:56 PM | Report abuse

He don't look moby to me, bc.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 5:08 PM | Report abuse

You don't know Moby.

Posted by: Jumper | August 13, 2007 5:13 PM | Report abuse

I actually spent a few days in Enumclaw many years ago. There really isn't much to do there. But still.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 13, 2007 5:24 PM | Report abuse

*I* don't know Moby? Me? You gotta be kidding. Moby is practically my middle name. It's Dick I don't know. (Ask bc; he tells me that all the time.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Jumper, I can affirm that Mudge is Moby, Ishamel, Captain Ahab, Starbuck all rolled in one robert-redfordish frame.

I'm sure his coworkers race to batten the hatches when he's in a bad mood.

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Karl quits, death shall have no dominion, snowballs in hell, instantaneous travel...

Posted by: MedallionOfFerret | August 13, 2007 5:32 PM | Report abuse

And Mudge and BC take turns being Queepeg...

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 5:35 PM | Report abuse

So now Rove is praying and invoking the Almighty? I thought just a few months ago he was confessing (unlike so many of his White House compadres) he didn't believe in God.

Posted by: Vulture Breath | August 13, 2007 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Queequeg. Or Pequod. Or Peleg. All were in the book. No Queepeg. Or Shoepeg. Tho there was one peg leg.

Don't call me Ishael. Or Shirley.

Funny Moby-Dick should come up; I watched the Patrick Stewart version the other night, for the first time. Not bad. I liked Ted Levine (Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs, Stottlemayer on "Monk") as Starbuck. All except the part about eating whale blubber with fava beans and a nice chianti. That was a little over the top.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Glad you took my Moby alley-oop to the hoop, Mudge, Jumper & Wilbrod.

I'm still giggling over the idea of Rove as the Great White Whale.

*That* would make a helluva story.


Posted by: bc | August 13, 2007 6:20 PM | Report abuse

And Ahab telling the helmsman to "Engage, Mr. Sulu," every d--n time they spotted a whale. And then he'd run down to the holodeck with Dr. Crusher and...oh, never mind. Can't say it here. Fill in your own joke.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 6:22 PM | Report abuse

VB, he doesn't say which god. Perhaps Ares?

Posted by: LostInThought | August 13, 2007 6:23 PM | Report abuse

kurosawaguy. I know you have said it before, but for someone new to Kurosawa's movies, Rashomon or...? Ran? Dersu Uzala? I'm skipping the Seven Samurai only because I believe I once saw it long ago and far away, and I will be able to borrow the movie I give later from the giftee.

Help me, Obi-Wan Kurosawa-be; you're my only hope.

Would you believe most reliable source?

mostly, did you see the movie Becoming Jane yet? Has anyone? Should I wait for the DVD? Or is it worth the upfront purchase full bore no discount new dvd movie sticker price?

I really should call myself 'too cheap to pay full price' with respect to movies.

And a recommend for those interested. Miss Potter. A really nice little movie, not a full sticker dvd price movie, but yes if you buy it previously viewed or discounted. Heartily so. You can knit to it.

Posted by: dr | August 13, 2007 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Moby is my first name

Posted by: Grape | August 13, 2007 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Yes, by all means: thanks to bc for the great set-up.

Homeward bound now, methinks. Avast, ye lubbers.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Ruminant, there was some editing, if you can imagine. I know: Crazy! But that line was supposed to appear later and got lost in the shuffle. Whatever, it was kind of obvious.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 6:32 PM | Report abuse

I'm thinking of going to see Becoming Jane at a matinee (that's even expensive these days). I've seen mixed reviews of it, but I'm probably not knowledgeable enough about Austen to be put off by its inaccuracies. And I like James McEvoy. So if it rains, that's where I'm likely to be. I'll have to rent Miss Potter. I don't like Rene Z much, though.

Derzu Usala is very good. Saw it many, many years ago in a theater. I always forget that's Kurosawa. And I don't remember the plot. Will have to watch that one again.

Posted by: mostlylurking | August 13, 2007 6:33 PM | Report abuse

I wish to thank you, Mr. Achenbach, for alerting us good readers to the fact that there be that television program called "Californication" what has nekkid folks. On account of that be what's wrong with 'merica nowadaws. Too many dang nekkid people right there on the television. It just ain't right. Plus, I hear it costs extra.

Now in my day there weren't near so many nekkid people. Heck, you had to hang out at the Quicky Mart sometimes for hours before sneaking a peak at a "Playboy." And for years the ladies in there weren't even proper nekkid. And then, just to be mean, they would pull a fast one and not be nekkid at all. Remember that Charlie's Angel lady what had the hotsy poster and all them blonde hairs? Why she weren't even nekkid even though she was right there on the cover. Course, I done heard that now that she be practically a grandmother type she done finally got all nekkid. Now what kinda sense does that make?

These days seems like everybody in 'merica be nekkid. Heck I read on this here blog that even that fine 'merican Mr. Karl Rove might be getting nekkid. And even one of them mainstream media type fellers like yourself must realize that's just wrong, wrong wrong.

Now take them foreign countries like Canada. I bet they ain't nekkid near so much. Partly, I imagine, it's because of the cold. But also it's because they be decent folk. Like that Celine Dione woman. She ain't never been nekkid. Or at least if she has I can't find no pictures of it. Not even on that Google thingie where you can find near anybody nekkid. And that's the problem. While we 'mericans be sitting around nekkid as jaybirds them Canadians is all snug and warm in them furry coats they wears and is plotting to come get us. And when they do we won't even be able to properly defend ourselves.

Cause you can't rightly carry a hidden weapon when you're nekkid.

Posted by: Right Decent Patriouk | August 13, 2007 6:43 PM | Report abuse

How do you open a banana?

My daughter just discovered that it's much easier to open from the non-stem end ("the bottom"); you just pinch and peel.

She tried doing it that way when she found out that's how monkeys open them.

Here's an interesting article from Slate about how economists view the "controversy."

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 6:55 PM | Report abuse

The first time I was out in LA I bought some t-shirts for a friend. One of them said, in script, Cali-effing-fornia. My friend said her mother was not happy to see that t-shirt. I liked it and so did she.

Posted by: pj | August 13, 2007 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Butch Trucks still has his own band. I think, although I can't confirm this, he also plays with Gov't Mule, which is Warren Haynes's non-Allman group. Maybe he has just done some dates with that group. It amazes me that those two guys can play at such a high level for two different groups.

Butch Trucks, by the way, was born in Jacksonville.

Posted by: pj | August 13, 2007 7:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm nekkid under my clothes.

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Jacksonville, Oregon?

Posted by: bh | August 13, 2007 7:38 PM | Report abuse

One tends to concede to the monkeys. If Necessity is the mother of invention, then Laziness is the father.

Posted by: Jumper | August 13, 2007 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Shh TBG. That's just the kind of secret information the Canadians are waiting to uncover.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 13, 2007 7:43 PM | Report abuse

They're all bananas, bananas! I say...

Mudge, you got your cap'ns mixed up, but I forgive you.

Patrick Stewart's Captain Ahab kept saying, "Make it sushi".

While Willam Shatner's Captain Ahab would no doubtless say...

"There's something on the wave!!!"

and later,

"Moby Dick! Moby Dick! I'm not imagining it, he's out there! Don't look, he's not out there now. He dives deep whenever anyone might see him, except me."

... "He's not out there Bones, he's in here (tapping his heart)."

Later, when it resurfaces after a failed harpoon attempt:
"It looks quite well for a whale that's been 'utterly destroyed', Mr. Starbuck."

Now I actually kind of want to see a Shatner Moby Dick with ample Star Trek references now... ;).

Posted by: Wilbrod | August 13, 2007 7:47 PM | Report abuse

I actually jumped back here to ruminate over my impressions of the Olberman Democratic thing I saw last week. (I thought Olberman did fine.)

Lately I have noticed Biden likes the loud, fiery oratory. He gets pumped up and shouts his speech. This is okay in the general historical sense. But the other day, I perceived that after he spoke, something happened somewhat like how you can, by whispering, make the other person in the conversation lower their voice also. It's near to hypnotic suggestion; a crowd-dynamic sort of undertow that overtakes a scene. In this case, in reverse direction, in that after Biden spoke, all the candidates raised their voices, too, and when it came time for Clinton to speak, well of course she was loud, as well. I actually saw it as a natural progression of the tenor of the evening. My neighbor says, "ooh, she should be careful about seeming 'shrill.'"
I disagreed, outlined my perception of the shoutfest. It was a Roman Senate kind of night, where they all demonstrated their ability to address multitudes, in large halls, microphones not needed, dang it! Old time politickin' by gum. A Howard Beale competition of sorts.

One hopes they have all exorcised the Roman Senate they are channeling, or perhaps it is some sort of voudoun spirit which was riding them; and I look forward to examples of a more reasonable. nuanced sort of conversation next go-round.

Posted by: Jumper | August 13, 2007 7:56 PM | Report abuse

If true, OJ's book will be published, with commentary by the Goldman family (profits going to them and the foundation in their son's name).;_ylt=AiAdEI2rkyB.RuN0vsbGT1Cs0NUE

frosti, there's also an interesting article in Atlantic Monthly on the B-2 stealth bomber (I know I've left out some adjectives there). If you'd like me to e-mail you a copy, luciecutterunderscore3hyphendayatcomcastdotnet

Posted by: dbG | August 13, 2007 8:38 PM | Report abuse

You've gotta watch those B-2 stealth bombers. They'll take out the boodle justthatquick!

Posted by: dbG | August 13, 2007 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Wow, you really did it this time, dbG.

Posted by: Kim | August 13, 2007 9:57 PM | Report abuse

hmmm- I posted a perfectly innocuous jest and it didn't show up...testing, testing

Posted by: Kim | August 13, 2007 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Here's the transcript of Rove with the press corps on Air Force One, heading to Texas today:


Q Do you think the public has a misconception of you?

MR. ROVE: I'm not certain I understand what's -- other than that I'm the evil genius, yes.

Q "Bush's brain."

MR. ROVE: Well, that is -- that's not me. That's an attack on the President. That is the critics of the President trying to be cute. This guy is a Yale undergraduate and history major, a Harvard MBA, and one of the best-read, most thoughtful people I know. Now, I know he likes to play sort of the Midland/West Texas -- but he is smart. And the "Bush's brain" was, interestingly enough, a construct of two journalists as a way to diminish him by suggesting that he wasn't capable of developing his philosophy or his approach or his ability to win elections; somebody had to do it for him, which is incredibly demeaning and really stupid. And I don't mind saying that the two guys that coined it are stupid in their characterization.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 13, 2007 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Scanned that press release while watching the Broncos and 49ers pre-season game (hey, there's new Bronco backup QB Patrick Ramsay, still gunning in some nice-looking interceptions. 49ers backup QB Trent Dilfer's picks look more like ordinary bad passes), noticed that in the release Rove says he does not engage in "naval-gazing."

I'm sure the Secretaty of the Navy is relieved at this news.


Posted by: bc | August 13, 2007 10:24 PM | Report abuse

If you take all of Rove's answers in that press release and turn them upside down, you might have something approaching the truth. It's how he operates and always will. There was speculation on Olbermann tonight that Rove will be in charge of smearing HRC until she's unelectable and another Repub will win the White House. I hope the Dems grow a spine and associated other appendages between now and September, but I'm not holding my breath.

The meteor shower was a bust for us. In about two hours viewing over two nights we saw five. I've done better than that on a normal night.

Posted by: Bad Sneakers | August 13, 2007 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Alas, holiday is over and we head back to the schoolhouse on the morrow. I think that rest is in order, accompanied by a rasher of school dreams. Yikes. At least the year will be off to a relatively healthy start as I visited the doc for a semi-annuaal check up and my bp was 98/62. It's sure to change upon darkening the doorway of our building. If my PSA and cholesterol numbers are in line I think I'll make it, lest a 500# weight comes crashing about my cranium. G'night, all.

Posted by: jack | August 13, 2007 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Howdy y'all. We are back in the land of sudden extreme and intemperate heat. Y'all should give props to Tiger; best golfer in the world or not, it takes something to shoot that kind of score in this kind of weather.

I am furiously backboodling but started with this Kit and I just want to know: while we were out of Internet & TV reach, with no newspapers handy, for nine days, did anything ELSE happen? Is Torqueberto still bumbling along? Imagine our delight at the Rove resignation, coming as such a surprise. Perhaps I should be out of touch more often.

Posted by: Ivansmom | August 13, 2007 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Welcome back Ivansmom! There was something I was going to post for you the other day and now I can't remember what it was...

Oh yeah... One of the winners of the International Physics Olympiad is from Oklahoma City... Gold Medalist Haofei Wei (teacher: Shayne Johnston). I believe he's recently graduated from the Science & Tech magnet school there?

There was a cool multimedia-kind of thing on the other day but I can't find it now. Showed pictures and bios of the kids on the American team.

Anyway... I thought of you. Did you have a great vacation? Is The Boy ready for his new school now?

Posted by: TBG | August 13, 2007 11:10 PM | Report abuse

The Daily Show is leading with Karl Rove bits, especially liked Rove's bluebird of happiness being shot by Cheney, and Rove leaving by umbrella, a la Mary Poppins.


Posted by: bc | August 13, 2007 11:11 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, if you could go away again and that would mean Torqueberto would resign, I'm sure the Boodle would chip in and pay your airfare anywhere you wanted to go.

On Jon Stewart's show tonight, correspondent John Oliver reporting on Rove's resignation said he knew where Rove was going next: to teach.

Stewart: At a college or university?

Oliver: Inner city high school.

Stewart: He's gonna teach civics? History?

Oliver: Tango.


It's bedtime, peeps. 'Night, all.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 13, 2007 11:17 PM | Report abuse

I'll take that offer, Curmudgeon. Just go ahead and pay the airfare in advance -- better yet, send me a check -- and I'll wander off. I'm sure Torqueberto's departure won't be far behind.

We had a lovely time in nice cool mountains, I am ready to go back to work (cough cough) and the Boy truly is excited about his new school. He's just over halfway through the Hobbit and must finish it by Tuesday. Fortunately he's become interested in it.

It is good to be back, and I'll see y'all tomorrow. Time now to turn in after the long road home. Vaya con queso, and fondue.

Posted by: Ivansmom | August 13, 2007 11:23 PM | Report abuse

No late-night chatters? Everybody went to bed early? Must have been the Rovestorm tuckered everybody out. Well, there's plenty more where that came from.

Let's start with Eugene Robinson's column, "Goodbye, Boy Genius," this morning--boy, do I like this column. Here's the first two grafs:

"Buh-bye, Karl Rove. On your way out of the White House, don't let the screen door hit you where the dog should have bit you.

"I can't say that I'll miss George W. Bush's longtime political strategist -- the man Bush used to call "Boy Genius" -- because, well, that would be such a lie. And anyway, to quote one of the great country song titles -- "How Can I Miss You When You Won't Go Away?" -- I don't believe for a minute that Rove really intends to withdraw from public life. I predict he'll be writing op-eds, giving interviews to friendly news outlets and calling Republican presidential candidates to warn them not to abandon Bush, no matter how low his approval ratings slide. Rove's new job will be to put lipstick on Bush's hideous legacy -- and, in the process, freshen up his own."

Hideous legacy--Robinson calls 'em like he sees 'em. And I like how he ends it:

"'I'll be on the road behind you here in a little bit,' Bush said to Rove as the two men faced reporters yesterday.

"Not soon enough."

And we have the hed of the lede story: "Rove's Plans for Lasting GOP Majority Fall Short"

Fall short? I'd say "fall short" is someting of an understatement. I'd say "lie in crumbling ruins." But OK, I can live with "fall short."

4th graf: "But few people -- including his Republican allies -- believe Rove succeeded in what he set as his ultimate goal: creating a long-lasting GOP majority in the country that could reverse the course set 70 years ago by President Franklin D. Roosevelt."

In other words, he over-reached...and he failed. I like the sound of that, linking Rove's name forever with failure.

The WaPo editorial page concludes its essay: "The GOP's wipeout in 2006 would suggest that Mr. Rove did not achieve this goal 0a long-lasting or permanent GOP majority], notwithstanding his brave parting words about Republican victory in 2008. And if the manufactured polarization of the Bush-Rove years did not even serve its ostensible purpose, then what was the good of it?"

Even Novak has mixed opinions on his hero (not worth quoting). Even the rightwing tax fanatic/nutjob Grover Norquist has a dumb column lukewarmly praising Rove (and of course still predicting GOP gains and eventual dominant success). You can skip that one, too.

OK, later, folks.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 14, 2007 6:19 AM | Report abuse

Got a hunch scotty's tied up this morning and may already be on the road, so just in case hecan't make it this morning, I'll try to pull off a few lackluster Grover waves...

OK, that's it for the Grover waves. I've seen Queen Elizabeth wave with more pizazz. But what the heck, I gave it a shot. I expect Cassandra will be along shortly with the morning benediction. 'Morning, Cassandra.

I'll open the bunker just "in case," and lay out some cinammon-raisin bagels and cream cheese (lite).

*wanders off aimlessly, in search of food*

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 14, 2007 6:26 AM | Report abuse

Morning, Mudge. Welcome home, Ivansmom, glad to hear you had a nice vacation. Hey, Cassandra. Happy Tuesday, everybody!

I'm on my way to the bunker with beverages, Mudge. Regular coffee for you? I just finished my hot tea, but I've got juices also...

We got in from the mountains after supper last night. It's still hot here. I dreamed about yellow jackets. With five nests within 25 feet of the front door of the mountain place, we are going to be fighting them for a while.

Posted by: Slyness | August 14, 2007 7:11 AM | Report abuse

I'm guessing power outage, on the boodle shut-down. Power failure. Check to see if the boodle's microwave has a PF instead of the time.

Or it could be that everyone has gone on vacation. Speaking of which: I'm going on a short vacation later this week but am lining up a guest blogger or two.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 14, 2007 7:19 AM | Report abuse

It's August. Everyone is at the beach. Even while sitting in a cubicle.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 14, 2007 7:38 AM | Report abuse

Everyone is at the beach indeed. Just got an e-mail from Witch no. 1 who says she just learned to milk goats. She's the one living on a farm perched in the Austrian Alps while I'm looking at mountains of papers here in the Capital. There is something wrong with that picture but I can't quite put my finger on it.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | August 14, 2007 7:48 AM | Report abuse

Hey Shriek, hope you had a great vacation. Wanted to thank you for your museum recommendations. We took the kids to the Museums of Civilization and Science and Technology. They enjoyed both (as did we). The Imax film on The Eiger is very good. There is also an exhibit at the Science museum called the "Anatomy of a Murder" that the older child really liked. There was a chamber music festival when we were in Ottawa and the National Youth Symphony and Choir were at the Civilization Museum it was amazing to hear them in that facility.

Posted by: dmd | August 14, 2007 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Rove based his political approach on the notion that it is better to invigorate the base by vilifying the opposition than to seek consensus and compromise. Anyone who wants a Democratic victory in 2008 needs to be worried that these tactics are not adopted by the left.

If the Democrats don't try to seek some reconciliation with those who reluctantly supported Bush, they might end up alienating many crucial voters. For I don't think a Democratic victory in 2008 is a given. This is still a very, very conservative country.

And if the Dems lose because they refuse to reach out, well, that would be Rove's greatest revenge.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 14, 2007 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Ever notice that something you consider just screamingly funny when you first think of it seems considerably less mirthful after a good night's sleep? I think there's a moral there somewhere.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 14, 2007 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, friends. Mudge, I did laugh out loud when I read Eugene Robinson's piece this morning. The man had me in stitches. All of it so true. It is refreshing to read the truth.

Ivansmom, whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaazzzzzzzzzup? It is good to have you back, and glad your vacation was good. Now if I could just have that same experience. I know, one needs money for that, right. Oh well, I'm having a good time any way. Glad you're back, we missed you.

Are any of you familiar with the tradition of revivals in the African-American churches? I went to my church's revival last night, and boy, did I have a good time. The singing and preaching was so good. I came out singing and praising God. I was also hungry, and everything was closed. I did find a place open, and got a nice salad.

Well, it is still hot here, and predictions by the weather person say the temps will be in the hundreds for the next three days. Water, we need water.

Try to keep cool, folks. And check on your elderly neighbors and those that live alone. Seniors have a hard time with the heat. Many times they don't realize how hot it is, and that can be a problem. So don't forget to check.

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Posted by: Cassandra S | August 14, 2007 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, you of all people should know that in those days Royalty didn't have good professional PR advisors. I'm sure Queen Elisabeth II is a much more enthusiastic waver than Queen Elisabeth was.

Posted by: Boko999 | August 14, 2007 8:14 AM | Report abuse

I also read the Novak eulogy and it positively reeked of brimstone, sulphur, and faint praise. I wonder just how many bridges Rove has burned while he was fiddling with the gears of state.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 14, 2007 8:19 AM | Report abuse

Proper Royalty wave etiquette is to keep the elbow fixed and slowly rotate the wrist along the vertical axis as if were a NORAD radar.

Anything more than that is just cheeky.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 14, 2007 8:27 AM | Report abuse

One of the most disturbing days of my blogging career was when I got a GoogleHit for 'Jordan Todosey naked' (without the quotes). For those of you without kids between the ages of 8 and 14, Ms Todosey is a twelve-year-old actress on the Disney Channel.

Part of the insidious nature of Google is that Joel will now get hits for this phrase as well. BTW, "yellojkt naked" is a GoogleYup with two links to the Achenblog. Doing a Google search for 'yellojkt naked' (no quotes) gets 1,250 GoogleHits. The same search for GoogleImages gets 115 hits with SafeSearch on. Good luck if you try it with SafeSearch off.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 14, 2007 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Don't forget the frozen smile RDP, it is an absolutely mandatory requirement for the proper Royal Wave. I still have this image of ER II waving at empty sidewalks in Montreal in 1976. She came in to open the Olympics and some brains made the parade go east of St-Laurent boulevard, the great English/French divide. The crowd thinned out rapidly past the Main and Lizzie ended-up bravely waving at nobody. Reportedly, The Queen in Right of Canada was not amused.

dmd, glad you enjoy your Ottawa visit. I'm just back from Charlevoix, I went to visit my folks. I managed to see whales without going whale watching which was cool. Minke whales were frolicking in Tadoussac harbour. One came close enough to see her eye clearly then she did some kind of inverted loop and showed her white belly and splashed water all over. Of course the camera was off and in the case when the whale showed up.
The Minke are small but cool whales. We've also seen a small group of "marsouins" (belugas) but they were quite far away. The blue whales had not shown up yet, this is unusual.
The usual cubicle fauna of August, fruit flies, have shown up in the office though.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | August 14, 2007 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Good morning Boodle! Welcome home Ivansmom.

RD, it was screamingly funny. Of course, I'd just gotten off the exercise bike after a marathon ride, so I may have been a little hypoxic, but still.

Posted by: Yoki | August 14, 2007 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Shoot, just read in Whale News that I missed the blue whales by a day or too.
Here's the Minke whale anyway.

RD Padouk, the nekkid piece was funny. As a former government employee supervising contractors I can confirm that this is indeed an unsung heroic undertaking. Got to do the work myself now, much less fun and I must pay for the coffee too. Sheesh.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | August 14, 2007 9:10 AM | Report abuse

RD - Your 8:12 cracked me up!

Ivansmom - welcome back. The Hobbit is sitting on my son's night table, waiting...waiting....

Guest bloggers..hmmm, very intriguing.

I thought this article was interesting. Kind of ties into yellojkt's musing about what one finds when one googles...

Posted by: Kim | August 14, 2007 9:10 AM | Report abuse

>Are any of you familiar with the tradition of revivals in the African-American churches?

Cassandra, those revivals are one of the things that makes me wish I were more of a believer. Looks like a great time, and I love the music.

Maybe there's some hope for me yet, eh? :-)

Posted by: Error Flynn | August 14, 2007 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Kim!

Although that article left me profoundly depressed. When I Google my real name I get from between 4 and 7 hits, depending on if I include the middle initial or not. All of them me.

Not only am I not famous. I'm not even redundant.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 14, 2007 9:28 AM | Report abuse

What a day for talent:

1959 - Marcia Gay Harden
1960 - Sarah Brightman
1965 - Emmanuelle Béart
1966 - Halle Berry
1968 - Catherine Bell

All share a birthday today.

It's also National Creamsicles Day here in the U.S.

Posted by: omni | August 14, 2007 9:30 AM | Report abuse

>When I Google my real name I get from between 4 and 7 hits

Funny, when I do that I get 84,100,000 only 4-7 of them actually me. (I'm not making that number up, that's really what comes up.)

I wonder which is preferable.

Posted by: Error Flynn | August 14, 2007 9:33 AM | Report abuse

RD, it was funny in the morning, too. A friend who had done homecoming queen duty (yet remains a very nice person) explains the Royal Wave as "turn the lightbulb; wash the windshield." And thank you for your 8:03.

Welcome back Ivansmom. I thought of you on Sunday when I saw Tiger sweating in the Oklahoma heat. Hope you were able to escape it.

Lots of hits when I google myself; none of them are me. Looks like my attempts to fly under the radar are succeeding.

Posted by: Raysmom | August 14, 2007 9:46 AM | Report abuse

If I quote my name I get 8 hits, only two are me, and one of those is redundant. Follow either link and it has my place of employment at the parent company in another city in another state.

If I use my middle initial, which I do on everything I fill out or sign, I get zero hits.

My short handle gets over 50 mil. long handle: 347.

OK, I'm done

Posted by: omni | August 14, 2007 9:50 AM | Report abuse

RD and Error - I have never googled my name before this morning. I suspect the reason is that I knew it would send me into some kind of existential funk...TWO! That's it...Two hits. What the heck have I been doing with my life?

Omni - I bet I haven't had a creamsicle 20 years. I think it's high time that I get one. Thanks for the tip!

Cassandra - I've never been to a revival, I'm sorry to say. My husband went to a funeral of a very elderly lady at an African American church last year and said it was one of the most spiritual and uplifting experiences of his life. Uplifting, I said? He said, Yep! It seemed to him that the overwhelming emotion was happiness that this nice lady had gone home to her reward. What a lovely way to send someone on their way.

Posted by: Kim | August 14, 2007 9:51 AM | Report abuse

And, while we're at it, omni, let's add my father, whose 99th birthday would be today (he's been gone for a bit more than a couple of decades now). Next year, the centennial, I thought I'd do something special. Always an excuse for a get-together, you know?

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | August 14, 2007 9:52 AM | Report abuse

I guess I should fess up that the 2 hits weren't exactly accomplishments, either. I was in a magazine article once and on a genealogy that some Dutch guy did on my husband's family. Woohoo.

Posted by: Kim | August 14, 2007 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Hey Mudge!

Thanks for the abridged version of ER's piece. The Young Turks' Wes Clark Jr. made the point that Rove only served Bush, not the Republican Party. By demonizing the Dems, he reflected and I concur, there is no way the Republican can work with the Democrats on anything.

The policies for the rest of the Bush pResidency is to hold ground. That's it. In fact, we are clearly in a legislative stalemate position where the Democrats can't put a veto-proof majority together and the President can't and has really no interest in pushing any legislation.

He is just the steward of the Iraqi Occupation. That's it. Oh, yes, he is protecting his homies by standing in the way of tax increases for the super wealthy Americans (back to pre-deficit levels).

Toss in protecting those larger corporations who have yet to run off-shore.

The dark side (in more ways than one) may come with Rove's absence in the discussion about action aimed at Iran. With the now viral spread of the video clip of Cheney's April 15, 1994 explanation of why Bush I didn't and shouldn't have entered Bahgdad to "get" Saddam because it would extract a large toll on our military and destablize the region (Cheney was nice enough to tick off all the things that would have happened and now have or may NOW happen) ... who knows if Cheney really cares about telling America what WILL happen when he ratchets up actions against Iran.

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | August 14, 2007 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Ah, Emmanuelle Béart. "Jean de Florette" & "Manon of the Spring" are a pair of wonderful movies on the theme of the evil deed recoiling on the doers. Béart appears (wow, does she!) only in the second film, but you need to see both to really get the full effect. Great cast- Yves Montand, Gerard Depardieu, Daniel Auteuil, as well as Béart- in a wonderful story stretched over two features.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | August 14, 2007 10:03 AM | Report abuse

One interesting dog that didn't bark in all this Rove-farewelling is the complete lack of discussion about any role he had in invading Iraq. Reading between the tea leaves, it makes Cheney's role as the master string puller all that more apparent.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 14, 2007 10:19 AM | Report abuse


I guess Rove gets full credit for devising the victory in '04. I guess that also puts him in charge of the voter caging in multiple key states where Rove designed a plan to cage votes of deployed troops and minorities. Those lists were going back and forth to the White House. Good thing voter caging isn't illegal, otherwise justice would be all over it.

I heard that Greg Palast is walking around with proof of this, but the only one that Justice has gone after is ... oh, no, Greg Palast.

Could it also have been his White House phone number that was used to direct the illegal phone bank clogging four years earlier?

I guess that's what architects do?!

At any rate, it may sound strange, but I would settle for a fair election in 2008. Is it asking too much? In the 1980's, the Republicans agreed in a decree not to ever use caging again to deny citizens the right to vote.

Can we get back to one person, one vote?

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | August 14, 2007 10:27 AM | Report abuse

On a slightly different topic, we may be finally looking at the Stagflation Moment of realization that I mentioned a couple months ago.

Just a guess, but, with the Walmart sales numbers not where they were to be; retail prices rising; and 10 year treasury rates rising; who knows.

Will this be the move through 13,000?

This past week, we saw heightened volatility, which can be the precursor. I think that I am right to say that, amazingly, after the end of last week's closing days, the week was actually up.

AND, the world central banks have been pumping billions into the credit market to maintain the credit systems. I find it hard to believe that investors are going to leave their "money on the table" under those circumstances.

Watch out downstairs!

Posted by: Dolphin Michael | August 14, 2007 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Funny thing about that permanent Repugnant majority. If the elections in 2000 were fair...

Posted by: omni | August 14, 2007 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Rove is the latest in a long and proud tradition of GOP Dirty Tricksters. He all but cackles over the SC McCain smear. It was his crowning triumph. Someday the smoking gun linking Karl to the Swiftboaters will emerge.

Suppressing voter turn-out is a time honored Repugnantcan tactic that goes back to swinging potential voters from trees. I for one am glad they are much more subtle nowadays. But then I've always had a theoretical fondness (like Will and Safire) for literacy tests (but not poll taxes). It's a shame they are packed with so much historical baggage.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 14, 2007 10:47 AM | Report abuse

As Wal-Mart goes...

I'll post a new kit in half an hour or so, just so's you know.

Posted by: Achenbach | August 14, 2007 10:51 AM | Report abuse

DM - Thanks for those two very interesting posts. I had never heard of "voter caging" before.
And I share your concerns about credit collapse.

Posted by: RD Padouk | August 14, 2007 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Local speculation about Rove's activities once he settles back in Texas. Do you recall how I said about a month ago that Texas Sen. John Cornyn--Bush's water-carrier in all things--was politically vulnerable and how the state Dems were whooping with glee?:

Rove recently was featured at three fundraisers for U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, whom he helped elect to the Texas Supreme Court and to the attorney general's post in the 1990s, a sign that he may plan to help Cornyn in his upcoming re-election race.

"I don't see him taking on any sort of regular efforts, but I do plan on calling him from time to time and asking his advice," Cornyn said. "He's a friend and somebody whose advice I welcome."

(Froomkin's take yesterday, echoed in the same article):

Rove's friends expect him to play a major role in establishing President Bush's library for the sake of shaping the president's legacy.

(More than one book?):
And though Rove said he will write a book, Olsen said he is convinced Rove will write more than one about his political experiences, in part to further promote his view of Bush's legacy.

How can Rove be termed the architect when eveything that he has worled on falls down or apart and goes "Boom?"

Hard to be chatty from here in the heat--yesterday being the hottest day of the year thus far. We had a power out at 5:25 p.m. that I missed because I was napping. All I knew was that the house was getting progressiely hotter as the day wore on. In the evening, the downstairs was 85 degrees, upstairs it was 89 degrees (90 at bedtime, at which time I opened doors and windows and set the master bedroom ceiling fan to Cat 5 hurricane strength). Loomispouse checked the unit for our upstairs that was not working when he arrived home. No loose wires, everything mechanical checked out O.K. We spent the night minimally dressed, to say the least. Were in the community swimming pool this morning before 6:30 a.m., before the break of dawn. Today, he had the presence of mind to check the breaker, which was the culprit. This morning, I'm back in the relative cool, if you can call it that.

Watching a bowling ball of moisture forming up off the tip of Cancun and heading our way. Heavy rains expected late Wednesday through Friday--thank goodness. Also watching the path of TD Four, now past the Cape Verdes, probably to be named Dean before too long.

Keeping an eye on Britain, since FMD has a 14 day incubation period. Just when Surrey seemed to be in the all clear, the British government has set up a watch at a farm in the neighboring county or shire, in Kent, with a herd that looks to have suspicious symptoms. Of course, Britain is just waiting for the other shoe to drop, watching African bluetongue spread across the European continent and anticipating its jump across the Channel, spread not by wind or close contact, but by midges.

Posted by: Loomis | August 14, 2007 10:59 AM | Report abuse

RDP, I'm reminded of the Monty Python episode The Bicycle Tour, which starts simple and stupid, and then for 25 minutes gets more crazy and hilarious in a steady crescendo, all on the same theme. Just when you think they can't top that one, they do. I thought of it the next morning and broke out laughing again.

BTW, the original of your saying might be this one, from Winnie the Pooh --

When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.

Posted by: LTL-CA | August 14, 2007 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Dolphin, I'll be happy to ride out the next 16 months with legislation stalemate. I don't WANT Bush proposing any legislation, and I don't much trust Congress to do the right thing about it (which would probably be to defeat anything Bush might propose). So stalemate is fine by me. That *&$#@%$# NSA wiretap thing comes up again in about 5 months; the Dems screwed the pooch on it last time.

Anything the Dems propose will get vetoed, so what's the point? Much rather have everybody gearing up (slowly and quietly, please) for the 2008 slugfest.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | August 14, 2007 11:12 AM | Report abuse

RD, I'm still giggling at the idea of nekkid Canucks. Just the idea even.

Exceptfor one thing, I'd believe you. Ever wondered what Canajuns do during all the dark hours we get up here in winter?

Posted by: dr | August 14, 2007 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Googling myself comes up with 5-7 hits. I was actually talking with someone about this yesterday. The worst part is when someone with the same name including any slightly unique spelling appears to be much more interesting than yourself.

There's probably a market for improving people's Google-image. One could hire a fast runner to do a couple charity runs at a good pace in your name, or maybe start an on-line paper devoted to making puff-pieces about people for hire.

CP, I read the Penguin Classics edition, which I understand to be the more recent translation (Tullaby?). The note from the translator said how the formal language had been updated - I was imagining the use of "thee" and "thou" as in For Whom The Bell Tolls in the prior edition.

There's a question for SD: if you were translating to English, how would you communicate the switch from "vous" to "tu"?

Posted by: SonofCarl | August 14, 2007 11:34 AM | Report abuse

So, dr, what DO Canajuns do during the dark hours?


Posted by: Slyness | August 14, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse

It's a state secret or something. All I know is the memo I got said ixnay on the ekkidnay.

Posted by: dr | August 14, 2007 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

Busy day, just checking in.

I'll wait for the new Kit to post anything else.


Posted by: bc | August 14, 2007 11:39 AM | Report abuse

I am faxing as much cool overnite weather south and east as I can. I don't think the fax can handle it. There's this odd screeching sound coming from the fax. Maybe cool weather is too much for the mighty fax.

Wait a minute I'll go outside with some fans. wouldn't it be nice if that would work?

Posted by: dr | August 14, 2007 11:44 AM | Report abuse

JA needs to post 'is own SCC here. ABout that erroneously placed half in 'is last post.

Posted by: omni | August 14, 2007 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Joel promised a new kit to keep us from talking about Googlin' nekkid pictures of ourselves. Makes me wonder what he has to hide? Fortunately "Joel Achenbach naked" and "Gene Weingarten naked" are both Googlenopes.

Posted by: yellojkt | August 14, 2007 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I do like the URL of this current Kit, though, don't you?

Posted by: TBG | August 14, 2007 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Oh, thank God, yello.

LOL, dr...

There is an Irish artist with my name, as well as an Australian professor. I'm glad to say that I'm not a Googlenope, based on an article I co-wrote for a fire journal several years ago.

Posted by: Slyness | August 14, 2007 11:59 AM | Report abuse

seems to me hell is here now

Posted by: omni | August 14, 2007 12:00 PM | Report abuse

SOC: //There's probably a market for improving people's Google-image. //

There are companies that will do this for you! I'll see if I can find the article later. . .

RD, that was hysterical last night.

Yoki, impressive. :-)

Out of 1 meeting, into another shortly. With little sleep for 3 nights, I find myself fantasizing again about standing up and dumping a crystal pitcher of ice-cold-process coffee over myself. Somehow this bears no resemblance to the fantasies of even a month ago. It did help that we kept muting the phone so we could laugh and pound the table at the vendor's claims. Bonus when someone fell out of their chair laughing at a particularly egregious claim.

Mudge, thanks for the TedL linkage. I'd no idea.

Posted by: dbG | August 14, 2007 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Of course, the prior fantasies to which I refer were all centered on winning the lottery. :-)

Posted by: dbG | August 14, 2007 12:06 PM | Report abuse

New kit.

Posted by: dbG | August 14, 2007 12:16 PM | Report abuse

New Kit!!!

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