Democrat Blogs Reluctantly Condemn Brian Schweitzer

by lizard

The whoring DiFi analogy and gaydar comments Brian Schweitzer made recently forced two Montana Democrat political blogs to half-heartedly condemn The Brian’s antics, which made for some entertaining reading.

At Intelligent Discontent, Don Pogreba kept it short and tried feebly to minimize the impact of Brian’s indiscretion by saying essentially those meanie Republicans have said worse:

Former Governor Brian Schweitzer apologized for his insensitive sexist and homophobic remarks about Dianne Feinstein and Eric Cantor, suggesting, at least, that the former Governor knows he was wrong. There is no defending what Schweitzer had to say, but the spectacle of Montana and national conservatives falling all over themselves to condemn Schweitzer when they’ve not only said worse, but enacted legislation that put bigotry into practice, certainly makes it difficult not to be a cynic about politics. It’s also especially cynical for former Baucus staff member Jim Messina, who was responsible for the profoundly homophobic Mike Taylor ad to be quoted calling Schweitzer the “most overrated pol (in) memory,” and [saying] that “offensive comments and bolo ties don’t get you (the president of the United States).”

I know it’s difficult for Democrat loyalists to criticize one of their own, especially when our former Governor was their best chance at holding the Senate seat vacated by perennial corporate whore and destroyer of single payer health care, Max Baucus. But the fact Brian crammed both feet into his mouth by being “insensitive” to both women and the LGBT community made some sort of response necessary.

Over at the MT Cowgirl blog that necessary response is even more hilarious. Claiming to be a “feminist” blog, the “Cowgirl” had to address their former boss political champion who once delighted with antics like veto-branding on the steps of the capitol. Here is how the post begins:

Two days ago, it was revealed that Brian Schweitzer said his “gaydar” detected something in Eric Cantor and that it might have been the reason conservatives voted against him; that southern men are often “effeminate sounding;” and, that Dianne Feinstein’s willingness to give the NSA a blank check, coupled with her later criticism of the NSA, is the equivalent of a hooker saying she’s a nun.

Not Schweitzer’s finest moment and comments that must here, on a feminist blog, be condemned. The remarks about Cantor and southerners are not appropriate; the Feinstein remark is not exactly a wise or feminist thing to say about a female politician.

Can you hear the reluctance? I certainly can. But to maintain the Cowgirl brand, this post had to be written. But don’t worry, Brian lovers, the Cowgirl won’t take “her” kid gloves off:

I do suppose calling a politician a whore is a unisex thing too: you do hear the phrase uttered all the time equally about male politicians who sell themselves to the highest bidder. Nevertheless, had a GOP member said these things I’d have enjoyed slamming him, so here must we too must too denounce the democrat for the utterance. That said, those who know Schweitzer know that his record bears no resemblance to these remarks, something that has not been remarked upon in all the coverage. He has always been a social progressive and especially so on women’s issues. So the incident has a strange asymmetry to it.

They have often said that Schweitzer’s strengths are his weaknesses, and lately he is certainly the victim of what has often been a great strength: always trying to serve up a new, different, provocative and fresh dish to the voter and the consumer of politics. But the customer, this week, got a bad piece of fish which is being returned to the kitchen. The chef has apologized. He went on Facebook yesterday to do so, and I suspect we’ll see him reiterate early and often, as media personalities must do these days.

This part of the post offers an interesting feminist perspective on the use of the term “whore” in politics. It’s a unisex thing, says the Cowgirl, which I helpfully preempted by accurately referring to Baucus as such. Then the Cowgirl dishes up a culinary analogy drenched in weak sauce.

To sum up the post, the Cowgirl explains why so many people, including some Democrats, are enjoying watching Schweitzer crash and burn:

Schweitzer has also taken his lumps inside Montana, with state legislators and political activists of both parties expressing their disappointment on Facebook and Twitter. The piling on is not surprising at all. Schweitzer played a zero-sum game as governor in which you either had to join him or beat him, and if you lost he liked to squish you like a mosquito on the wall. It was what made the administration successful and also good political theater, but it also earned him many enemies. I can’t wait to hear what they say about it all at the Montana GOP convention this weekend.

So conservatives, but also the various democrats in the orbits of Jon Tester and Max Baucus who never warmed to Schweitzer and were never happy about the amount of water he displaced from the pool, are today enjoying some Big Sky Schadenfreude*. Now we will see if Schweitzer can recover and return to form.

It’s funny to watch this “feminist” blog try to depict Brian’s comments as having a “strange asymmetry” that somehow deviates from his usual form. My hunch is Schweitzer enjoyed some of that whiskey he likes talking about, which led him to express sentiments he has the good sense (when sober) not to articulate.

Regardless of the fallout, Schweitzer has too big of an ego to just ride off quietly into the sunset, especially when there are political whoring opportunities to take advantage of.

  1. Craig Moore

    Remember Cowgirl’s own “gaydar” moment?

    • Craig Moore

      Then there was Jamee Greer’s response,


      • larry kurtz

        Craig the tolerant: what a joke.

        • Craig Moore

          Remember Cowgirl’s knee-jerk response to criticism over her “gaydar” post? “… Yawn.” Even the Montana press took issue with CG and raised CG’s connection to Schweitzer. What’s that about apples not falling far from the tree?

          • larry kurtz

            a comment from an anonymous blogger in contrast with one from a former governor, the chairman of the largest single revenue source in montana and erstwhile politico: just spell his name right?

            • Craig Moore

              Sounds like you are defending gay slurs coming from the progressive side, Schweitzer and CG, so long as Montana makes money. Just how much money does it take for you to sell out the likes of Jamee Greer who took pointed exception to CG’s “gaydar” remarks?

              • larry kurtz

                gaydar a slur? gafg, craig: we all use it but aspiring politicos in the context in the way the gov did it is unacceptable bohunkery.

                having said that and liz knows where i am on this: schweitzer is exactly the practice Secretary Clinton needs to piece that last glass ceiling.

                you fux.

              • Craig Moore

                kurtzie, how does one “piece” a glass ceiling you remarked about? BTW, best you counsel Schweitzer, as he is the one who apologized for the gay slur reference. Perhaps he would share a bowl with you.

              • larry kurtz

                i put up a post about schweitzer’s gaffe fest and his throwing the cannabis wishes of montanans under the bus, craig. but know this: if he gets on the primary ballot in new mexico i will send him some money even if i don’t vote for him.

        • lizard19

          says the dude who supports a sociopath who celebrates news of Gaddafi being executed with unbridled glee.

  2. lizard19

    thanks for the links Craig!

  3. A Big Fan

    Just curious how you would compare Schweitzer’s apology to yours for your anti-Saudi and anti-Arab stereotyping? Given your unique ability to measure the sincerity of an apology and the reluctance with which one criticizes another’s remarks, I’m curious how your apology measured up?

  4. evdebs

    First I have to admit that I’ve used the unisex term “Koch ‘ho’s” on occasion, which aptly describes so many scoundrels that have poisoned the national landscape from DC (especially the “corporations are people” Gang of Five in the Supreme Court) to Montana (i.e., Tim Fox, Denny Rehberg, Max Lenington, Jason Priest, etc.) lunatics, but I’ve been cautioned by even progressive women friends that I shouldn’t be so casual about it. I’m looking for an alternative, but not confident that I’ll find one.

    On the other hand, when deprecating Democrats Liz has gone to the poisoned well to use calumnious material excreted by the likes of uberreactionary hit man Floyd Brown, his “Wall Street Daily,” and the “Free Beacon,” none of which have any legitimate reason to continue to use up finite resources such as paper, fossil fuels, food, water and oxygen.

    Surely, if his targets have done something amiss, he can find sources that are substantially less execrable and more reliable. than Brown. Whom will he enlist next? Joseph Farah? Terry Jones? Jerome Corsi? Ann Coulter? Sarah Palin?

    • lizard19

      I appreciate your perspective, but I will continue to link to a variety of sources which will elicit a variety of criticism.

      for example, Turner once told me explicitly I should stop reading Counterpunch articles. and why do you think he said that? because the sad remnants of the leftist perspective are themselves deprecated by Democrats who think electing better Democrats is even possible in the current political climate.

      and that climate is fascism. here, a quote from a Counterpunch article:

      Fascism is not a dirty word, it is 21st century America. Since we live it, we should own it. Given the US corporate structure, wealth concentration, record of intervention, polity-saturated militarism, disdain of world opinion and international law, disparagement of equality as a structural-economic proposition, we give ourselves little wriggle-room for the democratization of what cannot be democratized, a system of power predicated on global expansion, capitalist internal features of commodity-worship, alienation, and habituated submission to authority (economic, political, military alike), and now, with American capitalism experiencing a stage of evolving decay, accompanied by a sense and spirit of desperation to reverse the decline in its own right as well as relative especially to world historical forces, themselves becoming more capitalistic, the striking out, full-blown counterrevolution, to arrest the process of social change.

      this reality can’t be addressed by sending better Democrats to DC (which won’t stop me from voting for better Democrats locally). people obviously sense that, if you take the sad showing at the polls as indicative of currents of deep cynicism, which I do, but maybe that’s just because I am deeply cynical.

      as to “reliability”, I guess that’s up to each person reading this blog to determine what they think is reliable for themselves. personally, I find a blog like Moon of Alabama to be more reliable than CNN, but all sources have biases and angles and paymasters representing competing interests.

      anyway, thanks for commenting, it livens the place up.

    • Just a guy

      Do you consider the Helena IR to be “execrable?” This political whoring by our former governor stunk to high heaven:

      • evdebs

        Okay. I read the whole thing. I’m not a big fan of Lee newspapers, but thought this wasn’t a bad article.

        However, if you think it demonstrates bad and conspiratorial behavior by Schweitzer, I think you’ve missed the mark.

        Try saying “Benghazi, Benghazi, Behghazi,” and clicking your heels, if you’re trying to get there.

        • lizard19

          ah yes, the old conspiracy as pejorative routine. if you didn’t use Benghazi as a method of ridicule, maybe you could step back from the partisanship and ask why the CIA would operate under the diplomatic cover of a consulate?

          • evdebs

            Why? Seriously?

            I don’t think they were in the consulate, but were nearby. Correct me if I’m wrong.

            In April 1983, six months before the truck bombing of the marine barracks at the Beirut airfield, the U.S. Embassy in Beirut got hit, killing 67 or so people. If memory serves, it was admitted that CIA employees suffered most of the casualties.

            The barracks truck bombing killed about 241, all but a few marines. I’m not looking this up but I’m sure I’m close.

            There was a very superficial investigation, which found, for instance, that the barracks sentries were not allowed to man their posts with loaded weapons. Had they been prepared, there’s little chance that anything remotely near that fatality toll would have occurred.

            Reagan’s response? Within 48 hours, he invaded Grenada, putting an end to all those commies sipping pina coladas.

            Wag that dog!

            • Steve W

              true that, but we also have a Democratic President who often venerates Reagan. So now what?

              • evdebs

                I was a very involved anti-war activist in California and Viet Nam (where I had very little company) and hated Johnson.

                I was there, listening to the radio, when he made his intent to withdraw from his reelection race in ’68. I asked those other Americans who were listening, “I wonder what that son of a bitch is up to now?”

                I adored Gruening and Morse for having the balls to stand up against the Gulf of Tonkin horseshit.

                As the years have passed, my opinion of Johnson has moderated. He did a hell of a lot of good things, and a few awful ones. He escalated what Kennedy had done and JFK had previously escalated what Eisenhower had done there. He continued the Cuban insanity.

                So now there are the obligatory paeans to Reagan, whom I also hated back in the ’60s.

                It’s like wearing a flag pin, saying the pledge, singing the Star Spangled Banner. It’s like pretending to believe in God, because it’s almost impossible to get elected in the U.S. if you don’t make that claim or indulge in that pretense.


                So do I think that Obama respects Reagan? I’m not convinced. How could anyone respect he who allowed and facilitated the carnage in Central America, who lied about Iran-Contra, who appointed that perjurious racist Rehnquist as Chief Justice?

                However, when you compare Ronnie Raygun to the lunatic fringe that now controls the House of Representatives, you have to grudgingly give him a little bit of leeway.

  5. It always interests and amuses me when one uses “reluctance” as an indictment against sincerity. Slightly to the side like, weren’t you “reluctant” to bring a lethal firearm into your home, Lizard?

    What Schweitzer said was, no doubt, wrong, depending on what moral metric one uses. Both ‘the Cowgirl(s)’ and Pogie were very clear about that. Attacking them because they did not do so with the smug assurance you require from others is pointless, idiotic and self-contradictory. To be blunt about it, one of the reasons that ‘progressives’ continue to lose on issues and often appear extremist is that they foolishly set their own desires and angst above that of others who agree with them. ‘Reluctant’ or not, both quoted blogs point out the harm and damage that Schweitzer did to ideals and to himself. So, save that you are so much better than they are, what’s your beef about that? Oh, that’s right, they are “Democrat” blogs and must be lying … ~sigh~

    • lizard19

      my own desire is to not see the total corporate takeover of the globe. party politics is nearly a complete lost cause, thanks to corporate money. and how party politics is played trickles down to partisan attack blogs trying to downplay the behavior of their pols while relentlessly attacking the pols on the other team. so yeah, I point that out.

      thanks for commenting Rob.

  6. Big Swede

    Look on the bright side.

    At least he didn’t use the term “squaw”.

  7. larry kurtz

    Quick reminder: Joe Biden is very much in.

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