Hey, it’s our last free show! Dinesh D’Souza stops by to discuss this hit documentary Obama: 2016. Then, pollster, prognosticator, and provocateur Pat Caddell brings his usual sunny optimism to his view of the state of the campaign. And later, a rousing debate amongst our hosts about the effect of the media, and of course, “The Big Story of the Day.” See you on the other side, folks. Join today!

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  1. Profile Photo Inactive

    Promiscuous Tertiary Syphilis?  Has someone been peeking into my confidential medical history?

    I got it from Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s father , I’ll  have you know.

    That dates me, doesn’t it.

    There can be only one!

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    You guys been reading my Pink Floyd posts?

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  3. Profile Photo Member


    Remember these old things?

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    Pat is on fire! He is always so much fun on the podcast.

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    This was one of my favorite podcasts, it was the subject: it’s good to question how much credit we give the media; my liberal friend laughs whenever I bring things like that up, what do I think fox news is? He has a good argument, the other side sees us just as we see them, it’d be nice to stand back and admit that most people who tune into the news do so to vindicate beliefs already held.

    The best part about the heated argument though, in my opinion, was when everything de-escalated nicely. Listening, I felt no “oh god, what’s happening and what am I listening to?” instead I got the emotion but none of the backlash from arguments that get loud and can get sour.

    I would have liked more time spent talking about the events yesterday though, that was much of the reason I had been keeping an eye on the podcast release. I was hoping for less political and more “what do we do?” as a country discussion. I don’t think the presidency is as important as I thought just a few days ago, now I’m concerned about more.

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    Hey James, I was looking forward to hearing Another Brick in the Wall Part One at the end. You guys played Part Two. Part One is the slower one that’s 2 tracks earlier. I’m particular about my Floyd. Great podcasts gents. I await the next one eagerly.

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    Answers to some of the things Peter Robinson was talking about.

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    You know that legendary (but likely mutated) statement by Pauline Kael to the effect of “how could Nixon have won in a landslide; I don’t know anyone who voted for him”? Well the modern equivalent would involve not knowing anyone whose vote will count and/or being surprised that Romney and Obama advertise on tv.

    I don’t remember what 1980 felt like, or even 2004, for that matter, but I am certain that a winning GOP campaign in 2012 doesn’t feel the same way. 

    If you’re not in a swing state  (and I’m on another planet in NYC) a winning campaign, particularly for a GOP challenger, will be almost completely invisible, and “feel” like it has no weight.  But that was true of the 2010 election, and look what happened.

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    James Lileks:  My rant about the media is still banging around in my head – we may say they don’t matter, but […]


    I spend some time over on NewsBusters (sorry, I’m two-timing Ricochet), and their model is to combat media bias by exposing it. You’d think they’d run dry on stories and examples after a few years, but they’ve had a steady stream of material, every day, without fail. Tim Graham, Noel Sheppard, and the gang do a nice job showing how often and in how many places the media distort the news while claiming to be neutral and objective. 

    Of course, liberals dominate the media, but they also dominate the academy and bureaucracy. The news is just part of their unfair advantage.

    I agree with Rob that we can’t stop fighting to make excuses, but I see nothing wrong with pointing out the bias while we keep fighting as hard as we can. The good thing about an intellectual battle is that you can fight on several fronts at the same time.

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    You know we live in desperate times when Peter finds it necessary to resort to Jack Benny impersonations.

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    Caddell is very entertaining, but if he was ever a sage assessor of things, he’s not in an age without three major tv networks, and all the other trappings of the 1980’s or 1990’s.  The problem is that if Romney was more like Caddell recommends, no one would notice.  How do I know this?  Because Romney is saying much of what Caddell suggests, and no one, at least if the polls are accurate, is noticing.

    I think what Caddell is stuck on is a top-down campaign, and this will not work for a 500 channel, social media world in which the remaining big media is in the tank for the other guy.  Team Romney knows this, which is why their strategy is a grass roots , Tea Party-esque campaign of  aggregating localities in swing states; this actually dovetails with Romney’s LDS missionary wiring.  It’s not a dumb strategy, but it feels frustating if you don’t live in a swing state zone.

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    Pat Caddell… Whew. 

    Well now I understand what sent Peter out on the ledge earlier this week.

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    Pat Cadell puts the “over” in over the top.  This guy was spouting more nonsense than I can address in a 200 word post.

    Romney’s campaign is the worst ever?  Worse than Mccain 2008 or Dole 1996? Really?  Perhaps if Cadell ever listened to Romney’s stump speech he would see that Romney regularly mentions most of what Cadell is ranting about. 

    Pat has crossed the line into buffonery and the silence of our 3 hosts during his rant pretty much confirms that this is the last we will hear from him on a Ricochet podcast.

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    Pat is right. Attack is the best way. It works. Look at Clint. Then, as Rob says, have enough to say. The Canadian media is saying Obama campaign is better at the social media with Google.

    I hope someone is looking at Stephen Harper’s campaign. He had televised chats with an audience of hockey and soccer mums all discussing their lives and how government could help them raise their children. Think Oprah.

    It was just chat and Harper chatted back but it showed a man listening.  The opposition were painting Harper as cold too.

    Men on the campaign need to understand female psychology, we just want to vent but we do not need a solution. So be SEEN to be running a conversational event with soccer, football and hockey mums and it will go a long way with women.

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  15. Profile Photo Coolidge

    The new Lileks-Long UFC cage match will supplant Mollie Hemingway’s Fight of the Week. Count on it.

    • #15
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    Immediately after this podcast finished, I listened to the segment with Dinesh again just to float in the warm, milky liquid of that bubble; “Everything is clear to everyone now, right?”

    I think the argument over the media was not necessary (though entertaining).  The reason you don’t know where Romney is is because if anyone did, SEIU people would be bussed in there to scream, break windows and pee on things.

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    With Pat Caddell there’s just too much oomph. It isn’t that he doesn’t have good solid valid advice to offer; it’s that his comments are so absolutist that they make you feel liberated and constrained at the same time—like you’ve been tied up and tossed out of an airplane. I wish someone had asked him to explain his comment about losing Congress. If the Republicans lose the House is that really Romney’s fault? Or the fault of Romney’s campaign? I don’t think so. If Romney/Ryan lose and the Republicans lose the House and fail to regain the Senate, it’s the fault of the American electorate. Pure and simple. It will mean that this is what the majority of Americans want. Sure, a campaign can have an impact on such things—much as the mainstream media does, I would say.

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    Sorry, Pat Caddell is the guy who tried to galvanize voters to write in Hilary Clinton’s name as a primary candidate against Obama.  He is operating in a different era.

    If he had been listening to Dinesh D’Sousa prior to coming on, and maybe that is the drawback of podcasts – no Green Rooms to watch previous guests, he would have been unable to tie his perspective to the reality of D’Sousa’s extremely successful documentary and what it means at the grassroots level.  Knowing that people are seeing that film is extremely heartening to me. 

    I do like what Indaba says about taking notes from Harper’s campaign and filming Romney talking and, more importantly, listening to people’s concerns and frustrations.  But after events  this week, I fail to see how Obama remains up in the polls.  Anyone paying attention to the news in the ME knows that this rest on Obama’s shoulders.  He simply cannot blame the Bush administration, then go jetting off a fundraiser.

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    I find it frustrating too that we don’t know where Romney and Ryan are going to be.  I want to go if they are anywhere reasonably close.  I see your point though.  I also wonder if they are deliberately keeping things hush hush to stay fluid, like the brilliant visit to Louisiana right after the RNC convention.

    Gojira’s Hejira: Immediately after this podcast finished, I listened to the segment with Dinesh again just to float in the warm, milky liquid of that bubble; “Everything is clear to everyone now, right?”

    I think the argument over the media was not necessary (though entertaining).  The reason you don’t know where Romney is is because if anyone did, SEIU people would be bussed in there to scream, break windows and pee on things. · 25 minutes ago

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    Dinesh D’Souza for Secretary of State.

    • #20
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    Leslie Watkins:  . . . you feel liberated and constrained at the same time—like you’ve been tied up and tossed out of an airplane. . . .

    I’m gonna steal that line someday.

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    Great podcast!!  My take from it— we need REAL passion from Romney about something.  Passion is something the left and the media can’t distort!  It resonates with everyone and is the requisite for a leader!

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    Fluidity is important, too.

    Also Rob points out that big media has never mattered less.  I think that is true overall, but I’m willing to guess it matters more to  the “great undecided”. I doubt they are scouring blogs and alt media.  If you’re in the dark at this point, I bet you get your political info during commercial breaks for Dancing with the Stars or Status updates and John Stewart or Onion videos posted to Facebook.

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    Pseudodionysius: The new Lileks-Long UFC cage match will supplant Mollie Hemingway’s Fight of the Week. Count on it. 

    Will there be wagering involved? Of course, I ask merely for information.

    • #24
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    A minor point about the Lileks/Long discussion about the media and the ’92 election:

    Yes, the media was in the tank for Clinton/Gore.  But what killed Bush was Perot siphoning off “Reagan Democrats” and allowing Clinton to win a plurality. 

    By the way, I agree with James (while acknowledging the truth of Rob’s point).

    • #25
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    Caddell was certainly a lot more fired up then when he’s on Cavuto.  What he said about Romney needing a condensed 3-point “Here’s what I going to do” talk is right.

    The fact that he doesn’t seem to have it makes me wonder if the campaign reads and digests any of the columns, pod casts, etc. that we regular folks do.  Peter mentioned that he has been contacted by Ryan folks (I believe), so they obviously are aware.  But do they pay attention to the message?

    How hard is it to spend an hour every day reading Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, Mona Charen, Ann Coulter, and Jonah Goldberg, and then condensing it all down to a few key ideas and rewriting it in your own words?

    The marketplace of conservative ideas provides great arguments to frame things like RomneyCare, Bain, TARP, the GM bailout, etc., but I never hear any of it stated as clearly from the campaign itself.

    I don’t get it.

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    Best intro ever, and always good to hear from Pat Caddell.

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    I’ve listened to every flagship podcast.  

    The intro was brilliant.  D’Souza was compelling.  But the Pat Caddell segment is the first I’ve turned off.  I love Rob. He was an early Mitt supporter. But when Caddell criticizes and Rob’s nose moved magnetically to the Caddell derriere, it was more than I could bear (and I can bear a lot).  

    Worst segment ever. Caddell is a has-been windbag. Kaus is a Democrat, but is at least interesting.

    The Ricochet podcast is the best, but if Caddell is the best it can do, we’re mucking around in the dregs.

    I’ve heard promises about Walter Russell Mead and David Mamet. When are they scheduled?

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    I liked this episode!  It was feisty!  The hosts were yelling at eachother and everybody hated the guest because he had bad news!

    Yell more!  Have more guests you disagree with!

    • #29
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    I agree with Caddell in some areas. E.G. Obama presents budgets that get zero votes, even from his own party. The Dem. Senate is on its 4rth year sans budget. Sec Interior defies court orders on Gulf drilling to keep energy prices high. Energy loses billions on bad investments. Everytime CBO looks at Obama Care the price goes up. There should be no Republican remotely close to a mike hat does not ridicule any premise that the Democrats can speak intelligently on the economy.

    Ditto foreign policy: treatment of Israel/UK/forcing Mubarek out to have our Embassy trashed/Syria a “reformer” etc.

    If one chooses not to believe willfull destruction, then  how can you avoid ridicule of the amazing incompetence displayed. There is no way the Democrats should not be on the defensive on these and many more.

    I also agree with him on leadership, E.G. the Republican House. Appropriations that allow trillion plus deficits, no zero based budgeting, continued funding of Justice in spite of contempt. They are wimps, violating the spirit of the 2010 election.

    I still think we will win, but am afraid that this will only slow the train wreck.

    • #30