March 03, 2005

Jon Stewart - Cautiously Optimistic; Nancy Soderberg - Hoping For the Worst

If you want to enter the twilight zone of liberal foriegn policy wonkery, watch the six minute clip of Jon Stewart interviewing Nancy Soderberg, author of The Superpower Myth: The Use and Misuse of American Might.

Favorite quotes (courtesy James Taranto):

Stewart: He's gonna be a great--pretty soon, Republicans are gonna be like, "Reagan was nothing compared to this guy." Like, my kid's gonna go to a high school named after him, I just know it.

Soderberg: Well, there's still Iran and North Korea, don't forget. There's hope for the rest of us.


Soderberg: There's always hope that this might not work.

Amazing stuff...

I love how the bulk of the segment was devoted to debunking the premise of the book, namely that American might has been misused by the Bush administration.

Watch the video here, click on the Nancy Soderberg clip.

Posted by doug at March 3, 2005 12:18 AM | TrackBack

There's always hope that this might not work.

wow, that's heartwarming.

Posted by: travis at March 3, 2005 12:37 AM

"Soderberg: There's always hope that this might not work."

I don't know what comes from further out in the twilight zone: That she would say something like this, or that Jon Stewart would be cautiously finding merit in the Bush people's approach.

ارقص للقرد في دولته

Posted by: abuzachary at March 3, 2005 01:47 AM

When trying to understand Soderberg's outrageous comments, we need to consider the source:

She was on the staff of Senator Kennedy before joining the Clinton Gore Administration. As number 3 on the staff of the National Security Council, she was at Clinton’s right hand during much of the malfeasance we witnessed during that time.

When she remarks about something going wrong in North Korea, she ought to know. Sec. Albright and Soderberg were among the cabal of America apologists that thought they could buy good will from Kim Jong Il… Didn’t work DID IT!

Now, Bush is cleaning up the mess these people made and all they can do is hope he does not succeed…

Very sad… Politics used to stop at the water’s edge… But power and personal bitterness seems to be more important to these folks than their own nation’s success in making the world a freer, more peaceful place.

If Kerry had been elected, she would no doubt be back in office. God forbid!


Posted by: Mike on Hilton Head at March 3, 2005 10:37 AM

ick, liberals

Posted by: Chase at March 3, 2005 05:21 PM

Umm.... Guys... Did any of you actually see the show? I did. When she said "There's still hope...", she was joking. It was obvious to anyone who saw it.

I'm sorry but I think you'll need to find someone else to crucify. (Isn't this "Crucify Robert Byrd Week" anyway?)

Posted by: LaurenceB at March 4, 2005 06:34 AM

Umm.... Guys... Did any of you actually see the show? I did. When she said "There's still hope...", she was joking. It was obvious to anyone who saw it.

was anyone in the audience watching the same show as laurence? because no one laughed.

great joke by soderberg, excellent sleuthing by laurence to pick it out.

Posted by: travis at March 4, 2005 08:39 AM

I didn't say it was a funny joke. Actually, she kind of mumbled it. But it was a joke nonetheless - nothing to get your panties in an uproar about.

Posted by: LaurenceB at March 4, 2005 01:09 PM

Yeah Travis,

I mean people just get to bent out of shape over jokes. Make a few jokes about the holocaust, or maybe about 9/11 and people just get all bent out of shape. Good thing some territory is still free from panny-bunched grandmas, such as "Let Iraq fail and Iraqis die" jokes, and "we can only hope that democracy fails in the Middle East" jokes. So come on Travis, lighten up.

Posted by: abuzachary at March 4, 2005 01:15 PM

oh... touché...
I have to agree with ya. If someone jokes about it, they are probaly thinking about it. And besides, who wouldn't believe that most liberals wouldn't love to see Bush fail? Sure, they would never publicly say that, but they would probably joke about it.

Posted by: Al at March 4, 2005 04:38 PM

OK. I give up. If you need so badly to be offended by a comedian's interview on Comedy Central, I guess I can't stop you. Enjoy yourselves.

Having said that, there was one part of the show that shocked me!

Stewart: You mean free love and that kind of stuff? [audience laughter] Like, free love, drugs?

Soderberg: If you're a terrorist, yeah.

Why would Stewart advocate drugs and free love for Iraqis? What kind of a degenerate is he? Does he hate Iraqis? And what about Soderberg's response? Clearly she feels terrorists will be receptive to Stewart's "free love, drugs" suggestion? What kind of a nutty idea is that? This lady is obviously off her rocker!

Oh, hold on... It's a comedy show!

My bad.

Posted by: LaurenceB at March 4, 2005 05:04 PM

LaurenceB: The reason I posted the link to the video is so that everyone could watch that segment of the show for themselves.

Most people seem to have come to the opposite conclusion than you re: Soderberg's comments.

The real irony though, as I pointed out in the post, has nothing to do with her apparent "I hope America fails" comments, but everything to do with how the segment was dedicated to debunking her thesis: that American power has been used ineffectually.

Or was that a comedic sketch as well, when Stewart derided the arrogance and methods of the Bush administration but admitted that the tactics seem to be working?

Posted by: doug at March 4, 2005 06:06 PM


I agree with you that the show was certainly interesting and worth posting for roughly the reasons you have pointed out - although I would have described the dialogue a bit differently than you did.

I'm sorry if it bothers you that the discussion has focused on Ms. Soderberg's off-hand remarks, but you can hardly blame that on me, right? I believe it was Travis, Abuzachary, and Mike (in that order) who started that thread. I didn't chime in until it had degenerated into "ick, Liberals."

Posted by: LaurenceB at March 4, 2005 07:22 PM
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