“Some people…”

In this week’s Mailbag, Stewart Mandel takes a page out of the George Bush debate playbook.

You know how the Prez likes to take that whole straw man approach to justify some grossly unpopular stand or policy he wants to push – “Some people…” W will say, “some people think it’s OK if the Jihadis take over the entire world… but I say that’s wrong and that’s why I’ve got to be allowed to spy on anybody I want to without a court looking over my shoulder…” [Ed. note - It seems it's necessary to point out that this "quote" is presented as a rhetorical device and doesn't represent an actual statement by GWB.  Please see the links in the comments for actual straw man arguments made by the President.  Sheesh.]  Never mind that these “some people” only exist in the mind of his speechwriters, he’s gonna roll with it regardless.

Well in much the same way, here’s what ol’ Stew’s got to say about Georgia’s opening game:

Having heard non-stop for the past eight months how undeniably superior their conference is to all others, it’s time for the Southern powers to back it up. In addition to Cal-Tennessee, the conference hosts two other high-profile matchups in Week 1: Kansas State-Auburn and Oklahoma State-Georgia. After all that bragging, I’m going to be highly disappointed if I don’t see at least three-touchdown margins in both.

Er, um, pardon me, but exactly who has been bragging? Mark Richt? Damon? Matt Stafford? (We know it’s not the offensive linemen – Searels has them under a gag order.) Not that it matters; this is just a convenient excuse for Mandel to write about the Dawgs any way he feels is justified should they win by a margin he finds insufficient.

This is what passes for expertise from college football pundits these days, I suppose…

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9 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

9 responses to ““Some people…”

  1. Ally

    Mandel sux – both he & May are the antithesis of legitimate sports journalists.
    For God sakes, if anyone’s been bragging it’s been OKSU!
    Love the site, btw, I check it several times a day. Keep up the good work!

  2. Ally, thanks. I posted a link to your site here. It’s a good read.

    One thing I’ll say in his defense is that I doubt Mark May considers himself a journalist.

    Mandel, on the other hand…

  3. Ally

    I guess you’re right – sorry, my disdain for Mark May runs deep.
    And thanks for the link. I’ll be posting more about Georgia football during the season, but sometimes it’s just crap about my life!
    Thanks again – Go Dawgs!

  4. kckd

    Well, Stewart seems to have put words in someone’s mouth that hadn’t spoken such a thing.

    Now who else does that? Hmmm. I’m looking for that quote from Bush but I can’t find it anywhere.

  5. Jeez, man, there’s this really neat thing called Google. If you search the phrase “George Bush straw man argument”, you can find all sorts of stuff.

    Like this: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/03/18/politics/main1419363.shtml

    And this:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A4757-2004May31.html

    And this:

    http://www.kuyd.org/blog/index.php/archives/2006/03/18/george-w-bush-a-strong-leader-in-the-global-war-on-straw-men/

    Yes, my quote was a rhetorical exaggeration. But not much of one.

  6. kckd

    Take it easy. But seriously, do you think deep down, Bush really wants to spy on people for other reasons besides terrorism. This kind of stuff kills me. We’ve got talk show hosts who believe he and Giuliani brought the buildings down themselves. And people take them as credible. I’m not trying to get off the subject, but we have far more troublesome things to worry about than phone taps.

  7. scdawg

    That’s not the point, kckd. You argue Bush would only want to spy on people who are terrorists, but they won’t and/or can’t tell us who they’re spying on, how long it’s been going on, or what they’re learning. They argue there can be no oversight by anyone except us.

    Your argument is essentially that Bush would never abuse this power. However, it is human nature to abuse power, and someone will eventually (if they have not already) use those taps not just for foreign surveillance, but for domestic surveillance and, later, against political opponents. Deep down, maybe you really believe Bush is responsible and will only use these powers for good (I don’t-just so we get that bias out of the way). But, think about your least favorite person running for president- whether that person is a republican or democrat-and assume they get elected and have this power. Deep down, does that make you feel comfortable?

    Safety is important, and lots of people will sacrifice all the liberties you want them to sacrifice if you convince them they won’t be safe unless they agree. I am willing to accept a little more risk in my life to preserve liberties that I believe are important. I want the government to leave me alone, and to the extent it needs to perform tasks for security, I want the executive branch to have SOME checks on its powers, even in time of war or other crisis.

    I would also point out that prior to the instant conflict, wars ended at some measurable point. It can be argued that terrorism will never actually end; therefore the war on terror will never end and liberties taken away based on the emergency of the war on terror will never be returned, unlike the case in WWII.

    I still don’t understand why republicans and libtertarians continue to support these policies.

    Sorry for the rant, which is truly off topic. Go Dawgs!

  8. kckd

    My argument is Bush may be stupid, but to think he is some evil, conniving man, like a Hitler is just ridiculous. And that’s where the argument seems to be going. That he has ulterior motives and is only using the jihadists as a cloak.

    My point is if the Senator wants to take your argument and run with it, that’s fine. But that is not what he’s insinuating.

    But I will say this, the world changes. Our constitution gave rights to bear arms, the same kind of weapons that the military themselves would use to go to war. Should civilians be allowed the same access to this today?

    We should always be careful when our rights as citizens are concerned, but we also have to use commen sense at times too. I’m sure there is some middle ground that can be reached here.

  9. Y’all are reading way too much into my post.

    All I was doing was giving an example of a straw man argument with my Bush reference.

    Like his politics or not, kckd, GWB is well known for this “some people” crap, as the links indicate. It’s a shabby way to make a point, as any first year debate club member would tell you.