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Richard Cohen Simply Does Not Care For Those BlackBerry Machines

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It's been a while since we've checked in on the musings ofWashington Post in-house coot Richard Cohen, who's hated every single development in American culture since 1958. Earlier this year he spent a whole column ranting about the kids and their tattoos ("I simply do not care for tattoos"), another about Amazon's Kindle ("I simply do not care for the Kindle"), and, of course, another about Barack Obama's age ("I simply do not care for the age of Barack Obama"). Basically, all Richard Cohen wants in life is a few twigs to rub together and some of grandma's licorice stick. All a man really needs. In today's column he tackles a new devil, that con sarn BlackBerry telephone machine. He simply does not care for Obama's BlackBerry telephone, especially when there are perfectly good print newspapers out there that perform the exact same functions, and women are also awful.


Richard Cohen was actually President of the United States for six terms in the "Roaring Twenties" -- terms were only 8 months long in those days, see, and they didn't call them "terms" then, they called them "dickies" -- so he knows him a thing or two about Obama's new job. He opens with some advice for the little skunk:

Barack Obama seems to have a recurring nightmare. In it, he is president of the United States, the most powerful man in the world, but cannot vanquish the one force that has bedeviled all presidents: The Bubble. It can swallow a presidency, isolating the chief executive from both the news he should know and the opinions he should hear, and ensuring that he goes through his day attuned to the comforting chirping of yes men -- the siren song that serenaded George W. Bush as he plunged us into the muck of Iraq.

All of this can be blamed on Obama's BlackBerry:

For some odd reason, Obama has fastened on to his BlackBerry as an antidote to The Bubble. It won't work. When the BlackBerry is valued for e-mail, it is no different from staff. It will be only as candid as the people on the other end. The First BlackBerry will lie.

Good god, here we go...

There is a remedy of sorts.

Oh Jesus Christ...

It is called The Newspaper.

MAYDAY MAYDAY WE ARE IN FREE FALL SEND IN A RESCUE CREW, THIS IS A NOSEDIVE AND THERE ARE CHILDREN ON BOARD

It's somewhat antiquated and often awkward to use, but it will bring news to the president he does not want to hear. The paper is not written with him in mind. The paper does not set out to please him, and it is not seeking a job. The paper will give the president more policy options than his staff will, and more news as well. In 1956, President Dwight Eisenhower responded to a question at a news conference by saying, "You are telling me things about my administration that I have never heard." This is what a newspaper does.

AS FOR WOMEN, FUCK THEM TOO

A BlackBerry is of limited utility. You cannot have a hearty family breakfast with everyone gathered around the BlackBerry. But with a good newspaper, the president could read the hard-news section, the first lady could adhere to gender orthodoxy and read the softer sections, and the kids could chuckle at the comics. Just as in the old movies, papa could explain things, like what's the purpose of NATO anymore. (I'm dying to know this myself.) Not all newspapers have comic sections, but even those that don't usually have sports pages and business columns.

THE BLACKBERRY SIMPLY DOES NOT CARE ABOUT LEAKS -- IT DOES NOT CARE ABOUT ANYTHING

A high-quality newspaper is a repository of leaks. Presidents don't care for leaks, but like awful-tasting medicine, leaks are good for presidents. Leaks are an important way that one part of the government can communicate with another. An assistant Cabinet secretary cannot pick up the phone and call the president. His boss won't let him. His boss might block something the president should know. This is where leaks come in. The low-level guy leaks the information to a newspaper and the president reads about it at breakfast.

THE BLACKBERRY IS A DEMON BUBBLE AND OBAMA ITS SHREW

This cannot happen with a BlackBerry.

$@#$@#$@#$@#$TT#$$#R#$@#

Everyone OK?

(Oh, and Richard, you can read full newspapers on a BlackBerry. It has Internet access and everything.)

UPDATE: Yes AND ALSO it should be noted that Obama does read print newspapers, frequently, because newspapers and BlackBerrys are not mutually exclusive. So the real question is, why doesn't Richard Cohen read the pool reports?

Piercing the Bubble of Presidential Isolations [Washington Post]

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Arkansas Republican Senator and evil Pinocchio turned into a real live boy Tom Cotton appeared on CBS's "Face the Nation" to discuss the attacks on oil tankers on the Gulf of Oman. And while the world is still trying to confirm IF Iran perpetrated the attacks due to conflicting accounts (the US says it was Iran with mines; the Japanese shipping operator says it was a “flying object"), that hasn't stopped GOP politicians like Cotton from trying to turn this into the justification they've been looking for, for great good glorious WAR.

MARGARET BRENNAN: You have long been defined as a hawk on Iran. You see these recent attacks, these are commercial vessels not military installations. What kind of response is warranted?

COTTON
: Well Iran for 40 years has engaged in this kind of attacks going back to the 1980s. In fact Ronald Reagan had to reflag a lot of vessels going through the Persian Gulf and ultimately take military action against Iran in 1988. These unprovoked attacks on commercial shipping warrant a retaliatory military strike.

BRENNAN
: Are you- you're comparing the tanker war in the '80s to now and saying that that's the kind of military response you want to see?

COTTON: We can make a military wreck- response in a time and in a manner of our choosing. But yes, unprovoked attacks on commercial shipping warrant a retaliatory military strike against the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The goddamn “Tanker Wars"?! Oh ... you mean when, during the Iraq-Iran War, we waited until Kuwait formally asked for our assistance to escort Saddam Hussein's oil? When Reagan, without approval from Congress, reflagged Kuwaiti vessels? When Reagan got us involved in the Iraq-Iran War leading to a daylong naval battle between Iran and the US, known as Operation Praying Mantis? The conflict we jumped into that led to our mistaking an Iran Air commercial jetliner for an Iranian F-14, shooting it down and killing all 290 people onboard, including 66 children? That's what you want to repeat, Tom Cotton?! Also, whatever happened to our ally, Saddam Hussein?

They say that those who don't learn from history repeat it. Tom Cotton is here to prove Republicans never learn. Watch the video below for yourself:

Cotton says "unprovoked attacks to oil profits" from Iran "warrant a retaliatory military strike" www.youtube.com

While Tom Cotton was justifying a war with Iran on CBS, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was having a surprisingly harder time on “Fox News Sunday" than he did on CBS when he transparently insinuated what the Trump administration really cares about with Iran ( "Texas Tea").

Pompeo: Trump doesn't war with Iran but will "defend American OIL interests" www.youtube.com

Seems Pompeo was upset that his “beating the drums of war" shtick was being interrupted to have to answer about Trump admitting (more like bragging) it was okay to take foreign assistance (and then walking it back when all the killjoys said it was illegal). After playing the ABC News clip, Chris Wallace asked a very pointed yet direct question. Pompeo's answer, however, was far from both:

WALLACE: Is accepting oppo research from a foreign government right or wrong?

POMPEO: Chris, you know you asked me not to call any of your questions today ridiculous ... You came really close right there. (awkward giggle) President Trump has been very clear. He ... he clarified his remarks later. He ... he made it very clear. Even in his first comment. He said "I'd do both." He said he'd call the FBI ...

WALLACE: He said "Maybe I'd do both."

POMPEO: President Trump has been very clear. That he will always make sure that he gets it right for the American people and I'm confident he'll do that here as well.

It was at this moment Pompeo thought he was golden because he's on Fox News and they never follow up! But clearly he forgot Chris Wallace doesn't play like that.

WALLACE: At the risk of getting your ire, the President told "Fox and Friends" on Friday, and I agree, he kind of walked it back...

POMPEO: He didn't walk it back.

WALLACE
: Yes, he did. Because he said "maybe" on Thursday. And then on Friday, on "Fox and Friends," he said "he'd listen first AND then if the information was bad that he would take it to the FBI or the Attorney General." But he also made it clear to George Stephanopolous that he did not see this as "foreign interference." And I want to play a clip of the President's own words ...

Then Wallace played ANOTHER clip of Trump's idiotic words back to Pompeo. Then he asks Pompeo one more time:

WALLACE: He says "it's not interference, it's information." The country, sir, and I don't need to tell you, has a long history dating back to George Washington in saying that foreign interference in our elections is unacceptable. POMPEO: Chris, President Trump believes that too. I have nothing further to add. I came on to talk about foreign policy and I think that's the third time you've asked me about a Washington ... piece of ... silliness. That's just, that's just a story that's inconsistent with what I've seen from President Trump do every single day.

After an awkward pause and visible anger in Pompeo's face (really, do watch), Chris Wallace calls it a day ... but remembers to remind Pompeo he's a thin-skinned baby:

WALLACE: I will leave it there. I think I only asked you twice but that's alright Mr. Secretary. Thank you. Thanks for your time and Happy Father's Day, sir.

Watch the video below for yourself.

And that's all for this week in Trump's collusion and "wag the dog"/Saudi oil interest war chants. So let's end with a couple of pictures of my new puppy, Harley Quinn!

Might as well have one last nice thing before our next war or stolen election. Have a week!


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