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May 23, 2007

“This Is The President, Reid! Step Away From The Chamber, And Keep Your Hands Where I Can See ‘Em”

Reid-Surrender

Here’s an example of the power and magic of the political picture.

In the more abstract, logical part of the mind, one understands that Harry Reid must simply be gesturing to reporters to let him speak.  However, in the cognitive neighborhood from which we tend to react to things like Dems caving in over dropping withdrawal timetables from war funding bills, there comes the tendency to interpret a picture as much in terms of story dynamics, as simple interview protocol.

This photo, in fact, manages to activate still one more property of the political picture.  Call it the “meaning in the eye of the beholder” effect.

If your a more centrist Democrat, for example, Reid’s gesture reads more like “steady as she goes.”  (That’s in the Emanuelian sense of: “[With benchmarks and reporting requirements in the funding bill,] I view this as the beginning of the end of the president’s policy on Iraq.”

To an anti-war liberal, on the other hand(s), what you’re more likely to read into Reid is plain surrender.

(h/t: japandrew. image: Doug Mills/The New York Times. Washington. May 22, 2007.  nytimes.com)

  • lytom

    Yuck!
    So it’s politics “rulez” again and not the people!
    The strange democracy in US. Hard to understand why Reid and co. are surrendering to Emperor, when majority of people are against the war!
    So what will be the elections like in 2008. Will the democrats again promise anything for the votes and hope voters will be fooled again and vote? Is there any point in voting!?
    I would not call it “surrender” BUT betrayal!!! and that makes me not a liberal!

  • mugatea

    It would be more appropriate if he had both thumbs up his hind-end. Or, his head on a tiny pillow with a brightly colored patched blanket over him, sucking a thumb. Or, he could have massaged Trent Lott’s shoulders while he sang to the press. Or, he really should have called in sick and gone to his golf club for 19 holes, because he didn’t do shit at work today, except give the Republican war machine a hand job.
    On a less emotional note, it seems the Dems are done with progress and are postioning themselves to win more seats in the next two elections. The longer the war lasts the more Republican seats will change over to Democrat. This game they are playing with lives makes me ill! It would be interesting to put a dollar figure on this decision too. They (both parties) are draining our treasury.

  • KingElvis

    One thing you have to remember with the “Democratic” Senate: Joe Lieberman.
    It is a razor thing majority. On the other hand, they could have just punted to Bush. They really could’ve just said, you don’t want timetables, you don’t get funding, period.
    So…it’s a cave.

  • Peter

    Mugatea,
    I suspect it went something like this:
    “AHA WE were inside the War Machine all along!”
    -while bursting out of the War Machine’s cake-like frame.

  • Gasho

    Bush:Gimme more money for my war.
    Dems:Ok, but it has to end at some point, (unless you don’t want it to).
    Bush:That’s too mean. No deal.
    Dems:Oh, ok. We’ll pay for your war, George. We’ll pay for it and own it. We’ll buy your war from you at the price of our dignity, common sense, and loyalty to our voters. Now that we own it, and it’s all ours, what do we do with it?
    Bush:Kill babies, make oil men rich, and loose the next election. That’s what you’ll do.
    Dems:ok.
    You can tell I’m one of the people who reads the pic as surrender. Kerry could have had the same shot taken when he rolled over immediately following the 2004 election heist. Pelosi’s “impeachment is off the table” could win her a shot like this, too.
    I sure hope they have at least some strategist who’s thinking a few moves ahead, because giving up important pieces on the chess board without gaining any advantage is STUPID.
    If this is a trial balloon, by the way, and the Dems are combing the blogs for what the public thinks – TAKE HIS MONEY AWAY, you fools!! TAKE HIM TO THE SHED and give him a big fat IMPEACHMENT whooping. I am serious when I said that you’ll OWN this whole mess if you pay for it right now. Think of what you’ll be buying into – literally. THINK!

  • tina

    I will continue to vote Democrat in 2008 because there is nothing else to do, realistically.
    I am disgusted with Reid et al.
    We are sabre rattling at Iran again, also. When will it ever end?

  • http://www.reachm.com/amstreet/ Kevin Hayden

    I think it looks like he’s holding two giant Bush butt cheeks. With his head immersed between.

  • http://www.woodka.com donna

    Exactly what I thought. I knew you would put this up, too.
    Bad, bad, move, Reid. Bad move.

  • mugatea

    Ya, Peter – he should have worn pasties
    … they were slow to respond to the elections of last year and quick to forget.

  • margaret

    There may be some sophisticated strategy going on here which we are not priviy to: makes one long for government in the sunshine, where all meeting, phone calls, etc are available for citizens to see. I believe some confidence in government would build if things were just not so secret when they hardly need to be, other than military operations in the field. We just have to hang on, here, and wait for this thing to unfold, and have a little faith that Reid holds some cards we can’t see.

  • PTate in FR

    The Democrats passed a funding bill calling for withdrawal from Iraq because they are sincere in their desire to leave. But POTUS vetoed it. What is a responsible Congress supposed to do? Let the troops go without funding?
    No, I think the Dems have achieved their political objective–they have established that they oppose the war and want to get out; If they were in charge, the US would be out of there. But they are still not in charge, and they want Americans to know that this terrible, terrible mess is brought to us by Republicans and the POTUS.
    Reid looks like he is being mugged at gunpoint. Some thug–I wonder who that would be?–has stolen Reid’s wallet.

  • cmac

    The Dems don’t have the votes to override a veto. They needed ‘Pub votes just to send the funding-with-timelines bill to the WH in the first place. (Remember, we’ve got one guy who’s out recovering from a stroke, and another guy who’s completely unreliable.) The Dems can only send the same bill back to be vetoed by that horse’s patootie as long as the ‘Pubs go along with it.
    Personally, I think they’re backing off a little too soon, but who knows what’s going on behind the scenes? Seems likely they didn’t have the votes to pass the timeline again.
    Reid’s been pretty clever in the past. Wait and see what he does with this before you start the name-calling and the chest-pounding.

  • jtfromBC

    So how do they work ? asked an AP Reporter
    Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, defended the compromise by raising his hands and explaining that the diapers we chose today are a modified adult diaper, except we just pull it up like a pair of shorts. Inside there is a chemical [sodium polyacrylate] that can absorb about 1,000 times its weight in water. The powdery material is woven into the fabrics of the diaper itself so when we Democrats use the restroom, the liquid is absorbed into the fabric and the diaper pulls it away from the skin. We are usually going to go No. 1 in the diaper and save the other stuff for when we are re-elected ”
    (The amount of bullshit it could absorb was not given)
    Alexandra Gekas helped with this report http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17034568/site/newsweek/ .

  • Cactus

    Margaret: Florida has sunshine laws and we’ve seen how well that works out.
    I’ve been hanging on for the past 6+ years and I’m now down to just one finger.
    I heard that the phone lines were jammed at the Capitol yesterday. Not only didn’t they listen, they must be deaf.
    And don’t count on Rahm Emanuel to make any waves; all he wants is to preserve the DLC and get Hillary elected. Screw everybody else. “….it looks like the desire for political comfort won out over real action,” said Senator Russell D. Feingold,” INDEED!!
    What galls the most is that piece of gar-bage in the veep’s chair mumbled a while back that the dems would give in to the W, as the smoke curled from his chair and his eyes flashed that bright red.
    I had heard yesterday that the dems were going to not vote this bill and let the repubs get it passed if they could. Does anyone know which dems voted for it?
    JTfromBC: thanks for the only laugh I’ve had since I heard about this.

  • http://ruinsofempire.blogspot.com/ Rafael

    This pic says it all…”We surrender!”

  • old lady

    just saw pan’s labyrinth. reid looks like creature that eats children and can’t see without the eyes on its hands. blindness and eating children seems fine metaphors for handing bush a blank check to kill more terrorist a-rab one-year-olds.

  • chimproller

    Don’t forget that extra Pork that Reid and Co. were able to jam into Dubya’s bill – congressional democrats can piss away money with the best of ‘em when they have the chance.

  • Bo

    The news conference of Pelosi and Dem House ‘leaders’-they’re definitely NOT-was much better at showing deeper surrender and humiliation. Pelosi stood with shoulders appearing to be slightly pulled in and sloping down lead wards, head tilting forward, and a dismal look on her face, like a whipped puppy dog, mumbling how she might vote against her own proposal! That after being leader of the Dem Honchos who created and proposed it! (Known as the ‘being for it before being against it’ gambit) It was certainly one of the most classic self-inflicted defeat moments on video. The others pulled out every phony inside-the-Beltway double-speak terminology imaginable, led by Rahm Emanuel using the most polished spin about how this gambit was in fact the beginning of the end of US involvement!

  • What!

    The Democrats allowed Bush to continue to own the war. Come September if the war is still going bad there will be hell to pay for the Bush cabal. (and yes it will still be going bad because the Republicons gave al queda motivation by their benchmark talk) If the Democrats cave then the Democrats will have hell to pay.

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