That Book

First podcast of 2018 so we wanted to out our best foot forward. We’ve got Commentary’s Sohrab Ahmari on Iran and The Washington Examiner’s Byron York on The Book, collusion, and Congress. Buckle up, it’s going to be a bumpy year.

Music from this week’s show: Everyday I Write The Book by Elvis Costello

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  1. Dick from Brooklyn Thatcher
    Dick from Brooklyn
    @DickfromBrooklyn

      

    CoC Violation!!!!!

    • #1
  2. Randy Weivoda Moderator
    Randy Weivoda
    @RandyWeivoda

    Holy cow, we’re up to episode 384 already?  I remember there was a big Ricochet shindig to celebrate episode 200.  As I recall, that one was in California, where Rob and Peter live.  Any plans for doing one for #400?  If so, I think this one ought to be in James Lileks’ state, wherever that is, just to be fair.  No wait, even better, in the city where @jameslileks grew up!

    • #2
  3. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    James, old buddy, I think your Trump hate is starting to shrink your brain. It’s affecting your work, including your segues. What the heck were those today? ?

    • #3
  4. Penfold Member
    Penfold
    @Penfold

    Maybe I’m getting old and out of touch, but this book thing and Bannon feels like another non-story that we’ll all forget in about a week.  It must be like living in a “Wives Of” reality show to live within the Beltway.

    • #4
  5. JuliaBlaschke Coolidge
    JuliaBlaschke
    @JuliaBlaschke

    James, I thought your segues were great as usual and please keep speaking the obvious truth about Trump. The Trump appointees (some of them) are doing great work under trying conditions.

    • #5
  6. Barry Jones Thatcher
    Barry Jones
    @BarryJones

    OK James we get that you don’t like Trump. I am not fond of him either. STOP whining about it. you listed all the things that may (or may not) be wrong with Trump and then said something like “and the Republicans just say what are you going to do and ignore it”. Fine. Do you have any suggestions for a solution or are you just going to whine about it? It has been a year already and we get that you didn’t get a pony for Christmas…

    • #6
  7. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Dick from Brooklyn (View Comment):

    CoC Violation!!!!!

    Says a guy named “Dick.”

    • #7
  8. JuliaBlaschke Coolidge
    JuliaBlaschke
    @JuliaBlaschke

    Barry Jones (View Comment):
    OK James we get that you don’t like Trump. I am not fond of him either. STOP whining about it. you listed all the things that may (or may not) be wrong with Trump and then said something like “and the Republicans just say what are you going to do and ignore it”. Fine. Do you have any suggestions for a solution or are you just going to whine about it? It has been a year already and we get that you didn’t get a pony for Christmas…

    The solution is certainly not to pretend that all is fine in Trump land and that people like James (and me) are the problem. I will continue to whine until the voters wake up and vote like adults, which mean I will likely whine forever. It is all I can do. Whine and vote.

    • #8
  9. Romney/Haley 2020 Inactive
    Romney/Haley 2020
    @PettyBoozswha

    A question for Peter from the NeverTrumpers:

    Are you going to work for Trump’s renomination/re-election?

    If you sincerely thought he was a danger to the country as we do, would you still be saying “meh” and shrugging your shoulders?

    Would you not protest if a staggering drunk was driving a school bus, but the union said it was ok so there’s nothing you can do?

    • #9
  10. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Romney/Haley 2020 (View Comment):
    A question for Peter from the NeverTrumpers:

    Are you going to work for Trump’s renomination/re-election?

    If you sincerely thought he was a danger to the country as we do, would you still be saying “meh” and shrugging your shoulders?

    Would you not protest if a staggering drunk was driving a school bus, but the union said it was ok so there’s nothing you can do?

    But what if after a year on the job, he turned out not to be a staggering drunk but be doing a comparable or better job than the last four guys who had the job?

    • #10
  11. Richard Easton Coolidge
    Richard Easton
    @RichardEaston

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):

    Barry Jones (View Comment):
    OK James we get that you don’t like Trump. I am not fond of him either. STOP whining about it. you listed all the things that may (or may not) be wrong with Trump and then said something like “and the Republicans just say what are you going to do and ignore it”. Fine. Do you have any suggestions for a solution or are you just going to whine about it? It has been a year already and we get that you didn’t get a pony for Christmas…

    The solution is certainly not to pretend that all is fine in Trump land and that people like James (and me) are the problem. I will continue to whine until the voters wake up and vote like adults, which mean I will likely whine forever. It is all I can do. Whine and vote.

    Don’t be surprised that people like me, when faced with the prospect of listening to podcasts like “Need to Know”, decide that we don’t.

    • #11
  12. James Lileks Contributor
    James Lileks
    @jameslileks

    Barry Jones (View Comment):
    OK James we get that you don’t like Trump. I am not fond of him either. STOP whining about it. you listed all the things that may (or may not) be wrong with Trump and then said something like “and the Republicans just say what are you going to do and ignore it”. Fine. Do you have any suggestions for a solution or are you just going to whine about it? It has been a year already and we get that you didn’t get a pony for Christmas…

    I get this a lot, I know. I’m between keeping my views to myself so I don’t irritate the Trump supporters, and quitting the thing altogether. From what I gather I think the audience would prefer someone who does not criticize the president. Or at least criticizes him from a position of general admiration and approval, and does so sparingly, in the context of general endorsement.

    Maybe a poll! Shut up about it / Take a Hike

    • #12
  13. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    Barry Jones (View Comment):
    OK James we get that you don’t like Trump. I am not fond of him either. STOP whining about it. you listed all the things that may (or may not) be wrong with Trump and then said something like “and the Republicans just say what are you going to do and ignore it”. Fine. Do you have any suggestions for a solution or are you just going to whine about it? It has been a year already and we get that you didn’t get a pony for Christmas…

    I get this a lot, I know. I’m between keeping my views to myself so I don’t irritate the Trump supporters, and quitting the thing altogether. From what I gather I think the audience would prefer someone who does not criticize the president. Or at least criticizes him from a position of general admiration and approval, and does so sparingly, in the context of general endorsement.

    Maybe a poll! Shut up about it / Take a Hike

    It is the sense of glee in your criticism, the feeling I have that you’d be happy to see Trump fall on his face that bothers me. If I am wrong in reading it that way, I apologize.

    • #13
  14. James Lileks Contributor
    James Lileks
    @jameslileks

    Django (View Comment):
    the feeling I have that you’d be happy to see Trump fall on his face that bothers me.

    I would be happy to see him rise to the solemn, august, magesterial role of the office, and would take no pleasure in seeing him flail and fail. The last thing I would want to see is the wholesale lazy repudiation of conservative ideas because Trump was associated with those concepts, and flamed out.

    • #14
  15. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    James Lileks (View Comment):
    Maybe a poll! Shut up about it / Take a Hike

    First, it’s more a matter of general politesse. “If you can’t say something nice…” Second, it’s a question of what this is doing to you.

    I don’t think much of Chuck Schumer or Nancy Pelosi. But if every time I heard you speak, you had to get in some sarcastic digs, I might just start to defend them. Saying, “They voted this way, and I think that this hurts the country because…” is not a sarcastic dig. But if you have to sigh and do a verbal eyeroll every time the name is mentioned, it’s no longer about them, but about you. It’s either a form of virtue signalling, or you’re allowing them into your head rent-free.

    I know people who, every time Michelle Obama was (or is) mentioned, had to go off about how ugly she was or how she was really a guy or a thousand other things that are not true or do not matter. She was “ugly” to them not as an objective observation, but through a filter of their hatred of what she stood for. I don’t happen to like Michelle Obama as a person, but she can clean up well and present herself as a decent-looking woman. The thing that spoiled that was that she often let her own disdain and hatred of others come through. Like the people who hate her so much they have nothing good to say about their fellow human being, she can be a bit dérangée when speaking on certain subjects.

    Speaking of dérangée, I have a first cousin who goes off every time Reagan is mentioned. Before long, she starts yelling things about how “Reagan sent (her husband) to Vietnam.” No appeal to reason or history or facts can stop the bat-guano from hitting the fan when that subject comes up.

    If you had a friend who was starting to go down the path of conspiracy theories on Michelle Obama or who was starting to be like my cousin on Reagan, wouldn’t you want to take them aside and say, “Hey, buddy, I don’t think this is good for you.” That’s what this is about, James. You are coming off like an unforgiving, twisted, bitter, old man. I don’t want you to be that person. Donald Trump should not be important enough to produce that effect. I don’t react to your two-minute hates because I think Trump needs defending. I do it because I think you need to be defended from yourself. You are a better man than this.

    That also goes for others on the site. I expect more from all of you.

    • #15
  16. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    The solution is certainly not to pretend that all is fine in Trump land and that people like James (and me) are the problem. I will continue to whine until the voters wake up and vote like adults, which mean I will likely whine forever. It is all I can do. Whine and vote.

    Is it your contention that we’d have been better off with Hillary?

    • #16
  17. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Dick from Brooklyn (View Comment):

    CoC Violation!!!!!

    CoC violation? He’s acting presidential. The last guy did this a lot. Trump needs to do more of it.

    • #17
  18. Romney/Haley 2020 Inactive
    Romney/Haley 2020
    @PettyBoozswha

    Arahant, you make valid points. I will try to modify my posting accordingly.

    • #18
  19. JuliaBlaschke Coolidge
    JuliaBlaschke
    @JuliaBlaschke

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    The solution is certainly not to pretend that all is fine in Trump land and that people like James (and me) are the problem. I will continue to whine until the voters wake up and vote like adults, which mean I will likely whine forever. It is all I can do. Whine and vote.

    Is it your contention that we’d have been better off with Hillary?

    No but we would have been much better off if Trump had never come down that stupid escalator!

    • #19
  20. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    No but we would have been much better off if Trump had never come down that stupid escalator!

    Well, that may be true, but I’m not convinced of it.  I’m not sure any other candidate would have done as well his first year.

    • #20
  21. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Is it your contention that we’d have been better off with Hillary?

    There should really be a running pool on how long it takes before this question gets asked.

    Repeat after me: The election was a year ago. Hillary Clinton is irrelevant. Stop trying to use her as a get-out-of-criticism-free card.

    • #21
  22. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    Trump’s tweets responding to this book remind me of the following quote:

    “I can handle things. I’m smart! Not like everybody says, like dumb. I’m smart and I want respect!”

    • #22
  23. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    The solution is certainly not to pretend that all is fine in Trump land and that people like James (and me) are the problem. I will continue to whine until the voters wake up and vote like adults, which mean I will likely whine forever. It is all I can do. Whine and vote.

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):
    There should really be a running pool on how long it takes before this question gets asked.

    Repeat after me: The election was a year ago. Hillary Clinton is irrelevant. Stop trying to use her as a get-out-of-criticism-free card.

    How do you expect me to react when someone says something like this?  The election was a year ago.  Why don’t people quit whining?  Give it up already.  You lost.  We won.  Quit whining.

    I didn’t manage to pull the line you were reacting to.  It was something like, “Would you rather have Hillary?”

    • #23
  24. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    How do you expect me to react when someone says something like this? The election was a year ago. Why don’t people quit whining? Give it up already. You lost. We won. Quit whining.

    Yes. You won, and you’re still whining.

    • #24
  25. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    How do you expect me to react when someone says something like this? The election was a year ago. Why don’t people quit whining? Give it up already. You lost. We won. Quit whining.

    Yes. You won, and you’re still whining.

    Lol.  I’m gloating.

    • #25
  26. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    How do you expect me to react when someone says something like this? The election was a year ago. Why don’t people quit whining? Give it up already. You lost. We won. Quit whining.

    Yes. You won, and you’re still whining.

    Lol. I’m gloating.

    That’s not what I’m reading.

    Guess what. Some good conservatives don’t worship Donald Trump. Get over it.

    • #26
  27. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    How do you expect me to react when someone says something like this? The election was a year ago. Why don’t people quit whining? Give it up already. You lost. We won. Quit whining.

    Yes. You won, and you’re still whining.

    Lol. I’m gloating.

    That’s not what I’m reading.

    Guess what. Some good conservatives don’t worship Donald Trump. Get over it.

    There’s nothing to get over.  I don’t worship DJT.  I just think that when I had to choose between him and Hillary, I chose correctly.  And he’s actually been doing an OK job, so YOU get over it.

    • #27
  28. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    There’s nothing to get over. I don’t worship DJT. I just think that when I had to choose between him and Hillary, I chose correctly. And he’s actually been doing an OK job, so YOU get over it.

    Then why do you feel the need to attack those who disagree with your assessment? Why can’t you leave Hillary Clinton in the past where she belongs?

    Heck, I actually agree with you; Trump’s been pretty OK on policy, but that’s not the issue here. It’s the constant browbeating of those who are not on board, the constant use of Clinton as a get-out-of-criticism-free card that bothers me. These are not the actions of someone who has, “gotten over it.”

    • #28
  29. Richard Easton Coolidge
    Richard Easton
    @RichardEaston

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    There’s nothing to get over. I don’t worship DJT. I just think that when I had to choose between him and Hillary, I chose correctly. And he’s actually been doing an OK job, so YOU get over it.

    Then why do you feel the need to attack those who disagree with your assessment? Why can’t you leave Hillary Clinton in the past where she belongs?

    Heck, I actually agree with you; Trump’s been pretty OK on policy, but that’s not the issue here. It’s the constant browbeating of those who are not on board, the constant use of Clinton as a get-out-of-criticism-free card that bothers me. These are not the actions of someone who has, “gotten over it.”

    A certain contributor last year was constantly calling for Trump to resign on his podcast.  I eventually stopped listening to him.  Too many Trump critics have acted in a like manner.  Trump supporters have largely moved on from them.

    • #29
  30. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    Sorry, UF, I was only reacting to this, where she specifically says she’s going to whine forever.  As you say, the election was a year ago.  She needs to get over it.

    “The solution is certainly not to pretend that all is fine in Trump land and that people like James (and me) are the problem. I will continue to whine until the voters wake up and vote like adults, which mean I will likely whine forever. It is all I can do. Whine and vote.”

    • #30
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