The Weekly Wrap

Friday on the Dish, Andrew demolished the image of Palin-as-naif some saw in Game Change, knocked down Mitt's fantasy foreign policy, and addressed a challenge to his view of Romney as-weak-candidate. We guessed Romney might run the world like Clinton, noticed some glitches in Mittbot's Southern programming, watched him rise in Mississippi, saw Alabama tighten, charted Santorum's unlikely path to victory, and listened to an argument that the horse race was effectively over. Some candidateds got better bang for their buck than others, most independents weren't really independent, Kucinich wasn't missed, and the economy put Obama's long-game policy accomplishments on the firing line.

Andrew also thought through Derrick Bell's influence on Obama, applauded TNR's new owner Chris Hughes, and defended his "cocksucking" label for metzitzah b’peh and a similar Afghan practice. We checked on the web reax to the job report, worried about a coming slowdown, puzzled over the GOP's big meh about Eisenhower, noted some ridiculous chutzpah from Johns Yoo and Bolton, pushed back against the idea that left commentators don't take hits from feminists for misogyny, and aired a revealing story about physicians and marijuana from our Urtak on the Cannabis Closet. The prohibition lobby protected police profits, prescriptions for birth control stigmatized the pill, and a judge sentenced a man to Facebook apologies. #Kony2012's leaders fired back at critics, marriage evolved, and Cartman-style parenting failed. CPAP became affordable, films became too nakedly expensive to be fun, and PETA comment threads were always predictable. Hewitt Nominee here, a really revealing Chart of the Day here, VFYW here, FOTD here, and MHB here.


By Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty Images

Thursday on the Dish, Andrew read the above cartoon as harbinger of a nasty campaign to come (fouler follow-up here), mocked Bachmann's lunatic attack on health care, picked out the insurance mandate as an issue Santorum could get traction on, advised Newt to get out to get back at Romney given the former's polling, and flagged Obama's rising numbers versus Mitt. We rolled our eyes at Mitt's faux-policies, explained why his "Southern Problem" was really a national problem, listened to an argument for Rick's front-runner status…in 2016, and assessed the Breitbart "bombshell" about Obama's past met principally with derision. Moderates were overrated, heath care may have cost the Dems the House, and SuperPACs couldn't really make up for campaign fundraising deficits. Ad War Update here.

Andrew also rubbished an Iran war on just war theory grounds, caught an egregious instance of theo-Catholicism producing a made-uptheological argument to attack health care reform, noticed another problem with traditional male circumcision (follow-up here), and wondered if Tony Woodlief was the face of a Koch-run Cato. We wondered if Obama lost by winning on Iran, cautioned against a Syria intervention to spite Iran, and surveyed the discussion on and backlash to the #Kony2012 campaign. Readers responded to the Urtak poll on the Cannabis Closet in droves and pushed back against Andrew on Limbaugh. Libertarians were challenged on the consistency of their opposition to the Kochs, homophobia wasn't natural, hate crime laws were ineffective, and sodomy laws were about criminalizing gayness. TSA scanners failed, journalists experimented with 99 cent pricing, apologies seemed like status symbols to some, wine conoisseurs had crazy-sensitive taste buds, and freezing cold beer tricked you into thinking squirrel piss – er, PBR – tasted similar to quality brews. Yglesias Nominee here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here.

Wednesday on the Dish, Andrew endorsed Santorum as the best candidate to heighten the GOP's contradictions, explained how Romney – and not Obama – wanted to make the US into Europe, guessed that lying was Mitt's first resort, and wondered what would happen if Newt actually followed through on his pledge to quit if he lost Alabama and Mississippi. We pulled reax to Super Tuesday (hilarious follow-up here and above), examined whether the media would start calling Romney out when he lied, connected Romney to Rush, unearthed a new explanation for why Santorum turned off Catholics, played the sucker's game of predicting Newt's next move, and saw Paul's delegate strategy struggle. The popular vote mattered, the GOP was likely screwed without more Hispanic voters, campaigns struggled with text messages, and the election of 1896 was craaaazy. Ad War Update here.

Andrew also reflected on his (long since rejected) offer to join Opus Dei, stood his ground on the Limbaugh boycott (follow-up here), peered into Netanyahu's psyche, and flagged some concerns about ruling out a containment policy for Iran. A brave Iranian girl uploaded some subtle resistance against the regime to YouTube, the Republican Persian obsession excluded other nuclear threats, and drones did more than you think. We watched Rush stroll into a trap on contraception, noted some parallel misogyny on the left, charted one way that the pill's price might rise, updated you on the rising marriage equality tide in Maine, aired more reader debate on posthumous baptism, and tracked with the Kochtopus tentacles reaching for Cato. The GOP caught up on prison reform, high gas prices weren't so bad, and the food stamps for soda discussion moved forward. The iPad helped construction, tablets spread far and wide, apps outsourced chores, a YouTube guy broke down viral videos, unfriending on Facebook surged, and the web photoshopped Michelle Obama. Quote for the Day here, AAA here, Cool Ad here, Yglesias Nominee here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here.


Crockett, California, 11 am

Tuesday on the Dish, Andrew liveblogged Stupor Tuesday's election returns, previewed Mitt's nastiness, and delved into Romney's Christianism. We wondered if Paul's failure to win a state actually hurt him, found a defense against the anti-caucus consensus, looked at the primary from China, and were wowed by Obama's Latino and organizational advantages. Ad War Updates here and here.

Andrew blasted the Emergency Committee for Israel's campaign against dissenters and worried that Netanyahu had already decided to go to war. Analysts hoped diplomacy could head off the rush to war with Iran, "Going the full Cantor" on Israel became a thing, Obama went on offense on Iran, Eric Holder sorta clarified when Obama could kill you, and the Anglosphere did well for itself.

Finally, Andrew weighed in on a recent debate on the social construction of race and expressed some concerns about the Boycott Rush campaign. Readers disputed the size of Limbauh's audience and the implications of the pill for women's equality in the workplace were extraordinary. We surveyed the debate over the Cato vs. Koch libertarian throwdown, accounted for ridiculous American healthcare spending, performed a similar maneuver for skyrocketing college tuition, and took in advice from Eeyore intended for Bernanke. Money corrupted, Football violence shocked (some), post in-vitro embryos puzzled, academics googled, and a hippo pooped. Chart of the Day here, AAA here, Yglesias Nominee here, Quote for the Day here, VFYW contest winner here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here.

Monday on the Dish, Andrew started a "Big Lies of Mitt Romney" feature, pointed out Joe Scarborough's delayed acknowledgement that Andrew was right about the birth control debate, (unfavorably) compared Romney's polling to John Kerry's, and connected Romney's polling slump to the contraception contretemps. We saw the establishment line up behind Mitt, heard Santorum's bankruptcy plea, examined the GOP's viability with independents, and discovered that Republican support among both female and single voters was in jeopardy. We geared up for Super Tuesday (delegate count explained here), Romney seemed poised to win big enough, and Mitt met Mr. Burns.

Andrew also weighed in on the Koch hostile takeover at Cato and kept an eye on the AIPAC conference and prospects for war with Iran – here, here, here, here, and here. Putin blatantly stole Russia's election and Saudi women were banned from Olympic competition. We broke down Dittohead demographics as GOP leaders became suddenly mealy-mouthed, continued the food stamps and soda debate, wondered if abortion could be merciful, and aired a dissent on posthumous baptism. TV joined the Internet age, big corporations loomed, people of the future looked likely to lie to their iPhones, food sensors told you if your dish had gone bad, jeans were amazing technology, and a reporter exposed the sordid reality of online shopping. People remembered faces well but not so much names, Faulkner eulogized Camus, whaling economics were a hot topic, and mixing up routines generated creative results. Marriage depended on monogamy, the art trade was rigged, jury duty was often worthwhile, and the Chevy Volt failed to meet high expectations. Cool Ad Watch here, Malkin Nominee here, AAA here, Quote for the Day here, Hewitt Nominee here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here

– Z.B.