Bobby Jindal Doesn't Even Need The Propeller Beanie
Like I said last night, I was moved by and proud of President Obama's speech. He offered us uplifting hope and he offered us a comprehensive vision of a better life. His speech strengthened the bonds that connect us as a people-- that make us feel we're all in the same boat, working together towards a common goal. And the country agrees. CBS instant poll of 500 viewers showed that 62% approved of the president's economic agenda before the speech and a mind-boggling 79% agreed after he was finished talking! CNN had similar polling results. Even conservatives, like Dave Brooks, were enthusiastic. He told Jim Lehrer that he "thought it was an excellent speech. It’s been a long time since I’ve really been able to rave over an Obama speech, but I thought this was a speech that perfectly captured the tenor of the country... The essential message was ‘no more fooling around,’ and I thought that was exactly the right tone to take… So just as a speech, as an explanation, ‘here’s what I’m going to do,’ I thought it was outstanding. It will really galvanize people.”
Well, most of the country agrees. Is clueless and somewhat simple-minded neoCon William Kristol so out of it that he was maybe expecting President Obama to declare war on Iran last night? Looking at the faces of the sour and dour, mean-spirited Republicans in the audience reminded me that we have enemies in our midst who mean us ill. Politico watched the tweets from some of the snide assholes who make up the Republican Obstructionist wing-- like Joe Barton and John Culberson. Until staffers reminded them that anyone in the world could be reading their nasty invective-- and not just David Vitter, Jim DeMint and John Cornyn, they were their nasty selves. Once they were brought back to earth... well here's a good example:
Republican Rep. John Culberson of Texas warned during the speech: “Hold onto your wallet America.” A short while later, he added: “We are at war-- seems to me honoring our troops should come on page one rather than the end of the speech.”
But just three minutes after that, Culberson seemed to get the message that his message might not be playing well outside the chamber. “This is a great privilege to be here and I will try hard to find ways to work together while preserving my core principles,” he Tweeted.
New York Congressman Eric Massa reports that some of the right-wing extremists on the Republican side of the aisle-- you know: the type who would rather see America fail than see President Obama succeed-- were acting like louts at an after school detention. "President Obama is working very hard to lead during a period of national emergency and I think he's playing pretty well with the hand he was dealt. The American people want bipartisanship in Washington, but when the President stated that the Stimulus bill contained no earmarks, which it doesn't, my friends on the other side of the aisle followed their Washington leadership and literally laughed at the President. Even though they disagree with the President's policies, I had hoped my friends on the other side of the aisle would have at least demonstrated some respect for the office of the President. We've worked very hard to work across the aisle with the Washington Republicans, but when they are making a public spectacle by laughing at the President, it's hard to be bipartisan. I would hope that the offending members on the other side of the aisle would offer an apology to the President.”
And then came Bobby Jindal, whose presidential hopes we watched go up in smoke as he made a repulsive attempt to act as though he were "just a regular guy," but came off more like someone you get on the phone from a Mumbai call center with a fake American name-- "Bobby" is common-- trying to make believe he's American. Aside from wrecking any hopes for a national career, he gave the whole country (minus one loud-mouthed, deceptive drug addict) the creeps tonight and just plain failed. Even Republican propagandists are admitting he was a disaster.
Not only did he sound like Mr. Rogers pitching an informercial, not only did his entrance inspire Chris Matthews to whisper “Oh my God” into a live mic, not only was his “government sucks/we know we screwed up but we’ll regain your trust by continuing to do what we’ve always done” messaging completely tone-deaf, but it’s very likely that the anecdote he used as the centerpiece of his “government is the problem” thesis… was completely fabricated.
Nice career you had there, Mr. Jindal. Have fun explaining to Louisiana voters over and over again why you said you’d take all the stimulus funds for your state except the ones earmarked for unemployment.
Noah stopped banging his head against a wall long enough to dash off a quick synopsis that captured the pulse of how the whole nation seems to have felt about Bobby Jindal's debut on the national stage:
Oh my freaking GOD! It would be hard to imagine a more phony politician than Piyush (now "Bobby") Jindal. This guy with the contrived name went to Brown and then to Oxford and came back looking and talking like Gomer Pyle. What a fraud! Talk about talking DOWN to your constituents! And, he replaced David "Diapers" Vitters in the House! What is it about Louisiana? It's like an old B movie western where the straight-out-of-casting politician appears in the middle of the riot or at the about to happen gun fight and says a few meaningless wimpy-ass words before he flees back inside to tremble under his desk. It's a sad testament that this guy would not be able to get a job selling on HSN or QVC, yet he gets elected governor of a whole state, and now doesn't want the money that would help his constituents. He's that insincere. I don't think I've ever seen a politician with such a staggering amount of obvious, oozing, dripping insincerity. The bar is now at a new low. This isn't a joke. It is SAD. He invokes the failure of how a Repug government failed to respond to Hurricane Katrina as an example of how we shouldn't let a new Democratic government get involved in anything. First the geezerly, curmudgeonly McCain, then the faking it Palin, then batshit crazy Steele... Now, THIS? What IS this? IT'S... "Bobby" ! The new, newer face of the Republikook Party. This one doesn't even need the propeller beany.
And it wasn't just progressives like Noah and me who found Jindal not quite up to par. Republicans are depressed. A far right GOP blogger: "I don’t care how much of a star Jindal is, America doesn’t elect somewhat-off dorks as president.” Matt Cooper: “If you’re Mitt Romney or John Huntsman or someone else contemplating a GOP bid in ‘12, you have to feel good about Jindal’s weak performance.” Ramesh Ponnuru: "I thought his delivery was weak. The content will play well with the party base but seems unlikely to expand it.” At least he can always fall back on his promising career as an exorcist.
All you ever wanted to know about Mr. Rogers: