How dumb is Lawrence O’Donnell?

FRIDAY, JULY 13, 2012

Inquiring minds hate to ask: How dumb is Lawrence O’Donnell? Last night, he started his program like this:
O’DONNELL (7/12/12): Mitt Romney has told more lies than any presidential campaigner I’ve ever seen, and he’s been caught at more lies than any presidential campaigner I’ve ever seen, including another big one today.

And so what did Romney decide to do after one of his biggest lies got exposed? He calls President Obama a liar. And so tonight, this entire program, every word of The Last Word will be about the lies of Mitt Romney.

Oh, and have I mentioned that his first name isn’t really Mitt?
Lawrence loves to talk about lies. He plainly thinks that this daring word choice makes him tougher than all the rest.

Unfortunately, the last time he thought he had spotted a liar, the liar in question was Candidate Gore. Lawrence kept the bullshit going right through October 2000.

George Bush ended up in the White House. For unknown reasons, we liberals are willing to accept this big fool as one of our fiery leaders.

Last night, Lawrence went off on the alleged lies of Mitt Romney. By paragraph 3, he was saying this: “Oh, and have I mentioned that his first name isn’t really Mitt?”

That’s how dopey this guy is. What do you think a typical voter would think about brilliance like this?

Last in the show, Lawrence returned to this theme. First, he put Dr. King to use, revisiting a stupid old claim involving whether George Romney marched with Dr. King.

Pretty much, the answer is yes. Then, the children started to play. We rubes were treated to this:
WOLFFE (7/12/12): No wonder [Romney] is a fan of Bill Clinton. It’s really—Clinton has—

O’DONNELL: It’s way wilder than Clinton. Yes you know, I mean, Clinton at least understood, “Here’s the stuff they can check. OK, I’m not going to say that.”

WOLFFE: It’s in the dictionary. What do you want?

O’DONNELL: Steve, this lying pattern with him— You know look, I don’t like my first name. I’m wicked jealous of my brother, Michael, who got the good first name in my family.

But I feel there’s something—it would be kind of a lie if I just didn’t tell you my first name, if I claimed my first name was “Mitt” when it’s “Willard.” It begins there with this guy.

BALL: If anyone on this panel was going to change their first name, I might throw it out there that I would be the one. But I stick with it.

O’DONNELL: We share something. We share something, the integrity of what we got stuck with. But there is something— I’ve never seen anything like this in a politician.

KORNACKI: I like that you used the word "wicked" there, our shared Massachusetts roots.
As you can see at the start, O’Donnell never tires of his jihad against the lies of Clinton and Gore. It’s astounding that a dope like this is now a liberal hero.

The toady Wolffe helped him out, of course. By the rules of cable news, each channel must have one such Brit.

But truly, how dumb does someone have to be to play this “What’s his real first name” card? Lawrence opened that way, then returned to it later, letting us know that he himself doesn’t like his first name.

(The children played along. Sadly, it’s required.)

Please do not be fooled; Lawrence is truly a dope. The last time he knew he had spotted a liar, that liar was Candidate Gore. And by the way: Did Romney “get caught in another big one” yesterday? Did “one of his biggest lies get exposed?”

As we noted earlier, the basic reporting isn’t necessarily going that way. For the New York Times report, just click here.

We’ll wait to see how this topic turns out. But when true believers believe very truly, they sometimes leave other voters behind. That’s especially true when the top true believer is really a corporate-owned clown.

Lawrence spots the lies of Gore and praises Bush for his tax cut: As late as October 2000, Lawrence was still denouncing the troubling lies of Candidate Gore. Three weeks before the nation voted, he made a major bungle on the McLaughlin Report, trashing Gore for a lie Gore simply hadn’t told.

Lawrence sat in one of the program's “liberal” chairs as he falsely trashed Candidate Gore. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 6/3/05.

Be sure to note Lawrence’s other complaint on that McLaughlin program. Since his income was over $120,000, he wouldn’t be getting a tax cut from Candidate Gore’s budget plan!

Also note his complaints about Gore’s make-up at the first Bush-Gore debate, in which he quoted Rush Limbaugh. And note his praise for Bush’s tax cut.

Bush’s tax cut was better than Gore’s. Everyone would get a break, even high earners like Lawrence!

Lawrence O’Donnell is pure world-class crap. What kind of “liberal world” puts someone this hopeless in charge?


  1. When I started reading you I found you views refreshing, however I've been reading you long enough to come the realization that you have an irrational hatred of MSNBC and it's commentators. You also live too much in the past.

    1. Irrational hatred? O'Donnell is quite the swell and always the willing whore.

      The sad moral of the story is you just can't trust media controlled by big money. Liberals started losing it when they gave up any semblance of class consciousness, and then increasingly began viewing authority as "friendly".

    2. You're right. Bob has truely gone over to the dark side. Instead of commenting on the lame interviews the networks did with Romney tonight; he's beating a dead horse over events from more than decade ago.

    3. Having a memory that lasts more than eighteen months is not the same thing as "living in the past". Maybe the reason we have so much trouble holding media figures accountable is because their past misconduct is allowed slip down the memory hole time and again. And the media misconduct during 2000 campaign is definately not a "dead horse". Its consequences are alive and well, and the media has changed little since. I don't think that having a little historic perspective is a sin, nor do I think the intellectual ADHD that characterizes our discourse is particularly desirable.

  2. When I think of all the paid hacks, er, pundits, that vacillate between political positions, I imagine that, in their heads, the refrain from Bohemian Rhapsody is constantly playing:

    ...any way the wind blows, doesn't really matter much to me...

  3. Noone, I don't think Bob has yet adequately or sufficiently made his argument about Campaign 2000, the first campaign in US history to be filled with lies, distortions, distractions, and superficial, clownish media coverage. It's going to take at least 800,000,000 more words to drive the point home.

    1. LOL, Confused. Yep, Bob and his band of merry men actually think that what happened to Gore was unprecedented.

      After all, the "wilding" of Naomi Wolf, for example, was brutal and vicious, compared to, say, the attempt to define Bill Clinton as a womanizing, draft-dodging, lying, tax-and-spend liberal.

      Never mind that political campaigns are pretty much always won by the candidate who defines his opponent rather than allowing his opponent to define him.

      What happened to Gore in 2000 has never been seen before in U.S. poltics. We know this is true because Bob says so. Often. For going in 13 years now.

    2. What the fuck are you talking about? How are those in any way comparable? The mainstream press -not politicians, not right-wing pundits: the mainstream press- managed to smear Gore for hiring a well-known and well-respected female consultant. They all tacitly agreed recite the same ridiculous story. They trashed her in shockingly sexist ways. The press had such a hard-on for trashing Gore that they had no problem going into the gutter and trashing a respected intellectual solely for the purpose of trashing Gore by proxy.

      It'd literally be unbelievable, were it not so easy to verify historically.

  4. There is a difference between calling your opponents dirty names, and pretending to be in your camp while putting words in your mouth and subsequently accusing you of lying.

    I, like Bob, watched it happen in real time.

    Of course, Katherine Harris and Clarence Thomas had much to do with putting Bush into the White House. We can't blame all of it on the media.

  5. Bob has made a case that is tough to get around. After the failed attempt to drive Clinton from Office, the Press Corp went after Gore in a way that was shameless even given the low standers of the Political World in General. They were, incredibly spiteful over Clinton's refusal to be guilty of wrongdoing in the phony scandals they had blow smoke on for years; and then they couldn't quite drive him out of office on Monica. AND this was due largely to the public's disgust with THEM. So, they took it all out on Gore in a way that was fairly shocking in it's nastiness, paving the way for perhaps the worst presidency ever.
    What Bob never mentions is that, yes, Gore made his own foolish mistakes, some of them head scratchers to this day.
    I think he's right about O'Donnell, and it's all the sadder because sometimes the guy is a likable presence who brings something worthwhile to the table. The above blather is real time waster stuff, and guys like O'Donnell do it because they don't want to do the harder work of telling us what is really wrong with Romney.
    The White House, at any rate, seems to be going with a class resentment double down. I think there research probably shows that the Republican Party can be portrayed as the shameless servants of the super rich, and that many Americans already view them that way. Perception, it would seem, has met reality.

    1. Well, the conventional wisdom that Bob sells is that Gore was the victim of Clinton's misdeeds.

      At the same time, the Clinton impeachment was horribly unpopular among the people. In the middle of that whole debacle, the Democrats historically gained seats in both the House and Senate in a mid-second-term presidency. It had been a long, long time since the party occupying the White House had done that.

      And Clinton also left office with sky-high approval ratings. Heck, I can't remember the country being in better shape than it was when Clinton left office. And he remains very popular today.

      The other idea Bob tries to sell is this silly notion that it's "the media's" job to act like a referee and make sure politics is always a fair fight. And when a candidate takes a low blow, the "media" should assess a penalty.

      Well, sometimes it works out that way. But most of the time, NOT. That's because the "media" in America has never been a monolith. It's a Tower of Babel of all sorts of conflicting voices, and these days of the Internet and twitter, etc., more so now than ever.

      In other words, when the other guy is saying mean things about you, don't expect anybody to step in and defend you. You got to do it yourself.

      And this, with the possible exception of choosing Joe Lieberman as his running mate, was Gore's most serious miscalculation. He let Karl Rove define him to enough voters to make the election close enough to steal.

    2. And as an example of the way Gore should have fought back, he should have taken the "invented the Internet" thing and ran with it. No speech should have been made without him stressing his leadership in Congress to move the Internet into the commercial domain, nor no speech should have been made without mentioning his key role in the Telecommunications Act that has put cellphones into the hands of practically ever man, woman and child in America -- and around the world.

      He should have also proudly claimed his tie-breaking vote as vice president on the 1993 Omnibus Bill --- the so-called "largest tax increase in history" --- that brought the federal budgets from record deficits to surpluses within five years, and also promised to continue PAYGO which required all new spending programs to have a funding mechanism that did not add to any deficit.

      And of course, no Gore speech should also been made without mentioning "Reinventing Goverment" which not only cut red tape, but dramatically reduced the size of the Executive Branch at the very time that the Republican controlled Legislative Branch was increasing in size.

      In other words, Gore should have put his sterling record, both in Congress and as vice president, out there for the world to see.

    3. Yes, it was easy. Gore and his team just weren't as smart as you, another of the many brilliant online leftists who were, tragically, nowhere to be found in 2000. It isn't as if anything and everything he said would have been twisted around, regardless of how he tried to spin things, and if necessary, they would have made things up just to smear him. No, he just needed to do X, Y and Z, and voile! Success.

      Years ago, I thought I learned an important lesson: whenever someone presents an easy solution to a problem, they're generally more interested in showing how smart they are, or else pushing some entirely unrelated agenda, than they are in actual problem solving. Years ago, I thought I learned that it's human nature to look at simple solutions first, and only reject them when it turns out they aren't so simple. But now I learn that I'm wrong: Al Gore spent millions on consultants, on some of the brightest political minds around, and it turns out he had an easy way to neutralize a corrupt press corps that had lost its mind, one that was actually MAKING THINGS UP AND REPORTING THEM AS FACT to smear him. That's why I love internet liberals. They find new ways to amaze me all the time.

    4. Right the media always picks the next president. That's how President McCain beat Democratic nominee Bill Bradley so easily in 2000.

      You know another sad "inconvenient truth" that Bob and his band can't quite wrap their brains around -- the fact that Gore, for all his sterling record of accomplisments and it was sterling -- was a dull and uninspiring candidate. And no, that is not a "media invention."

      You ever been in a large crowd where Bill Clinton or Barack Obama was speaking? You'd swear they were talking directly at YOU. Al just didn't have it in him to connect that way with people and inspire them.

      Yes, he was perhaps the most qualified candidate for president I ever voted for, but with the exception of Michael Dukakis, he was the least inspiring.

      And no, that wasn't because of what Maureen Dowd was writing about him or what Chris Matthews was saying.

      The guy was truly dull.

    5. Oh, I agree! His sold out tour on global warming, the Academy Award he got for a hit documentary that was nothing more than a long presentation of his -- the guy was as boring as watching paint dry! Bush, on the other hand, was a thrill a minute, an electrifying speaker who could get a morgue up dancing the conga!

      And as for media misbehavior, it isn't as if his loss could be ascribed to more than one factor, oh no! It must be all the media's fault, or all his for his myriad faults. Why, everyone says that, I know I did! Thanks for correcting me. And in return, I'm going to give you the ultimate compliment, the one every internet liberal lives to hear: You're one smart and observant person! Very sharp! I can't understand why, with geniuses like you around, we just keep losing. It's a mystery never to be solved.

    6. Well, "WE" don't keep losing. Democratic candidates have won the popular vote in four of the last five presidential elections, and gained seats in the House of Representatives and Senate every year since 1992 except for 1994, 2002 and 2010. That's six out of the last nine.

      But you keep on buying what Bob's selling. Somebody has to.

    7. I'm forced to are with you yet again. The past 30 years have been triumphant for liberalism. Look at the world, the country, the shape of the debate. Look at the wonderful strides we've made in traditional liberal areas like income equality and economic mobility, labor relations, the status of workers, look at the massive impact we've made on civil liberties and foreign policy, and to cap it all off, we got a healthcare bill passed that was written by a conservative think tank! Liberalism Triumphant, I tell you. The conservatives must be wondering what hit them.

    8. Oh woe is us that all people don't view the world exactly as we do. It must be Lawrence O'Donnell's fault. If only we had a spokesman who explained things in exactly the way we think they should be explained for all those stupid people who don't think like us.

    9. Greg, I do have to argue on one point. It wasn't the "press corps" that tried to drive Clinton out of office any more than the "press corps" had it in for Nixon and drove him from office.

      In both cases, the "press corps" was reporting stories that they really couldn't ignore, then letting the chips fall where they may. As it turns out, the people decided that what Nixon did -- all the things he did -- was pretty damned serious, and what Clinton did was hardly the "high crime and misdemeanor" envisioned in the Constitution.

      In the end, it was the people clamoring for Nixon's impeachment, and the people, by and large, begging Congress to just let the whole Lewinsky thing go. We got it. Bill's a hound dog. We knew that when we elected him the first time.

    10. Not true. Meaningless stories like "filegate" and "Graveyardgate" were not embraced by the public. This was partisan PR garbage, and "Whitewater" kept alive by terrible reporting in the N.Y. Times, who's bone stupid editor had it in for Clinton, gave us the Impeachment.

  6. Clinton managed to emerge from the pseudo scandals with the highest approval ratings in recent memory; higher than St Ronnie, at their highest during the height of impeachment. The public didn't take their cues from the media. Gore managed to squander all of his advantages and lose to Bush.

    1. Well, he did win the popular vote, but by not enough margin that they couldn't steal the election anyway.

  7. "Ma, Ma, where is Pa?" "Gone to Washington, Ha, Ha, Ha!"

    "James G. Blaine, the monumental liar from the State of Maine."

    "Rum, Romanism and Rebellion."

    Rachel Jackson "a dirty black wench" and a "convicted adulteress."

    John Q. Adams, who sold his maid as a concubine to the czar of Russian.

    And let's not forget the "secret tunnel" that Al Smith was going to build to the Vatican.

  8. Another great critique involving the day to day follies of the millionaire celebrity/prestige media/Network in-house "liberal". Always an interesting and entertaining read.

  9. The Anonymous IdiotJuly 15, 2012 at 8:22 AM

    Well, Bob I *have* tried to warn you:

    Mentioning Al Gore will bring me out of the woodwork.

    The Anonymous Idiot

  10. And your point? Nice analogy but, poignant


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