McCain to Pick VP This Week: Romney or Jindal?

McCain\'s VP Choice: The two finalists?Bob Novak is reporting that John McCain is planning to announce his vice presidential choice this week, presumably in an attempt to grab the press spotlight back while Barack Obama is being feted overseas. He notes that “Mitt Romney has led the speculation recently.”

Meanwhile, Chris Cillizza says “McCain will huddle with vice presidential aspirant Bobby Jindal during a trip to New Orleans later this week” which suggests that Jindal “is under serious consideration.”

Both men would be popular with conservatives (although I still haven’t figured out why, exactly, that’s the case with the more-moderate-than-McCain Romney) and have qualities that would help the ticket with moderates. They both have their drawbacks, too.

Romney’s got significant executive experience, is reasonably charismatic, and shores McCain up nicely on the economic front. There is the ever present “Mormon question,” but that’s likely a much lesser problem for the number two spot. The biggest obstacle here is that the two men seem not to like each other very much and there are plenty of sound bytes from their campaign against each other that could be played in the Fall.

Jindal is, as Joseph Lawler puts it, “the Right’s version of Barack Obama: young, a minority, articulate, and appealing. Only, Obama doesn’t have Jindal’s long list of accomplishments.” He helped revamp Medicare as a 24-year-old and turned around Louisiana’s university system before he turned 30. On the other hand, his belief in things like exorcism might not play so well outside that state. Morever, as I’ve argued previously and Cillizza reiterates, Jindal’s “foreign policy resume is at least as thin as Obama’s,” undercutting McCain’s chief argument.

Romney would be the much more conventional choice while Jindal would be more exciting.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2008, US Politics, , , , , , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. markm says:

    …Ouch. I like Jindal but that puts the binders on calling out Obama’s lack of experience to some degree. I also think Romney has run his course, to wishy washy, and he won’t be able to deliver Michigan if that’s what they are thinking.

  2. William d'Inger says:

    I sure hope it’s not Jindal. Jindal is turning out to be a disaster of a governor. He simply has no concept of what the job requires. He appears to be the kind of person who stumbles from one mistake to another hoping things will work themselves out. I say this as a voter in Louisiana who has to live with the results of Jindal’s inexperience.

  3. Michael says:

    The biggest obstacle here is that the two men seem not to like each other very much and there are plenty of sound bytes from their campaign against each other that could be played in the Fall.

    I’d bet there would be plenty more sound bites in the fall too. A smart Obama VP could probably provoke Romney into grand-standing against McCain’s own policies in a VP debate. His ego would make him a dangerous pick.

  4. Hal says:

    McCain/Jindal ’08: Because The White House Needs An Exorcist!

  5. Alex Knapp says:

    Jindal’s “foreign policy resume is at least as thin as Obama’s,” undercutting McCain’s chief argument.

    I’m sorry, but when did McCain get a “thick” foreign policy resume? Has he ever negotiated a treaty or wrung concessions out of a foreign power? He may have handled some foreign policy issues in Senate committees, but that’s a far cry from actually dealing with foreign governments.

    Anyways, that’s a discussion for another time. The real point is this:

    On the other hand, his belief in things like exorcism might not play so well outside that state.

    Um, yeah. That’s an understatement. Jindal is kind of crazy. Romney is not. Romney is the better choice.

  6. Not just a belief in exorcism, btw, but as Hall alludes, Jindal claims to have performed one.

  7. Hal says:

    I can’t, for the life of me, see Jindal being picked – as much as I’d love to see it for the comedy value alone. It’d be a straight pander to the evangelicals and bizarro part of the base which isn’t in the mood to be blatantly pandered to – well, maybe they don’t care anymore, as Dobbson seems to have thrown in the towel anyway for example.

    Romney? The guy literally towers over McCain which simply can’t be a good image for the campaign to be projecting. Further, as Michael points out, it seems highly likely that he can be easily provoked into attacking McCain for the dems. Maybe he’s more disciplined than that, though. Still, his liberal record is going to make McCain even more unpalatable to the base, and I doubt a more centrist appeal is going to make up the deficit from the independents. Then there’s Romney’s Mormonism, which is going to suck all the life from any evangelical support – and probably more than a few “social conservative” types who see Christianity as their basis.

    Either seems like an incredibly lousy choice, frankly.

    Still, I’m rooting for Jindal. Romney has his own comedy appeal, but Jindal truly is late night comedy gold.

  8. […] James Joyner notes that the Evans-Novak Political Report is predicting a veep-pick by McCain this week with Mitt Romney at the head of the list. Speculation about Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is seen to be at the top of the list as well. […]

  9. Beldar says:

    Alex:

    Actually, John McCain and John Kerry — more than anyone in the Clinton Administration — led the discussions with Vietnam, and then the debate within the Senate, which led to the normalization of relations between Vietnam and the U.S. That was no small feat, and unusual even for members of the Senate. McCain in particular took political heat from those who insist that the Vietnamese have never “come clean” about American POWs. But his efforts on that project are exactly the kind of “bipartisan leadership” experience that Barack Obama claims (and actually entirely lacks).

    McCain is also the ranking member on the Senate Armed Services Committee, and as such has had access to and significant contact with foreign military leaders. And he’s the second ranking member on the Senate Commerce Committee, which of course includes international trade among its responsibilities. I agree that Senate committee experience isn’t a perfect substitute for prior executive branch foreign policy experience. But it’s probably better preparation than being a border-state governor, and vastly better experience than any foreign policy experience which can be claimed by an Illinois state senator.

    Short of a former secretary of state — who is not a principal, but, after all, a secretary who’s supposed to be an agent for his principal, the Executive — I think McCain can fairly claim to have as much foreign policy experience as anyone who is not already running for re-election as POTUS.

    Can you offer a specific example of substantially different or better foreign policy qualifications among any of the serious 2008 presidential candidates of either major party?

  10. Beldar says:

    Steven Taylor:

    Please don’t spread grossly false information. Gov. Jindal wrote of having attended an exorcism, during which he joined others present in saying Hail Marys — not having performed one himself. He wrote of it as being an impressive spiritual session, but didn’t discuss, much less vouch for, the still-conventional Catholic Church doctrine which accepts exorcisms as legitimate and sometimes vital.

    Regardless of whether he becomes the Veep nominee, you owe him an apology.

  11. Alex Knapp says:

    Beldar,

    I had forgotten about McCain’s role in opening up relations with Vietnam, which is an embarrassing oversight on my part. I’m not entirely convinced that service on Senate committees really gives one a significant amount of foreign policy experience, though.

    Also, I obviously don’t question that Obama’s foreign policy experience is thin.

    As for 2008 candidates with greater experience than John McCain, I think the crown is quite handily won by Bill Richardson, who was my preferred candidate until he decided to run the worst presidential campaign in recent memory.

  12. Hal says:

    Regardless of whether he becomes the Veep nominee, you owe him an apology.

    Is there some objective criteria you can point to where we can judge such? It’s pretty clear from reading his article that he was very much involved in the exorcism. Whether that makes him an exorcist or not is pretty much beside the point as a political issue.

    An apology? Geebus. Y’all really seem to have the thinnest skin imaginable. Wake up and smell the coffee, dude. This is politics and politics of the presidential kind. If this kind of ribbing offends you then y’all are going to be in for a real treat in the big game.

  13. Beldar says:

    Let me be more precise (having now sprung the $1.50 necessary to read the entire article that was only briefly excerpted in the TIME blog post I previously linked.

    Here’s how Jindal actually describes his role in a group session with many religious friends, one of whom believed she may have been possessed by a demon (emphasis mine):

    Knowing that I was doing Susan no good, I quickly retreated to the opposite side of the room. Susan proceeded to denounce every individual in the room, often citing very private and confidential information she could not possibly have known on her own. It was information capable of hurting individuals — attacking people, as she did, by revealing their hidden feelings, fears, and worries. The night was just beginning!

    The students, led by Susan’s sister and Louise, a member of a charismatic church, engaged in loud and desperate prayers while holding Susan with one hand. Kneeling on the ground, my friends were chanting, “Satan, I command you to leave this woman.” Others exhorted all “demons to leave in the name of Christ.” It is no exaggeration to note the tears and sweat among those assembled. Susan lashed out at the assembled students with verbal assaults.

    Though I attempted to maintain a stoic attitude and an expressionless face, my inner fear must have been apparent to all present. I was the only one present who remained silent and apart from the group.

    I repeated to myself that such things do not happen to normal people. I had attended a charis­matic church once, out of curiosity, but had merely seen a congregation dance wildly, pray enthusiasti­cally, and speak in a language that sounded like gib­berish. I wondered how the horror unfolding before my eyes could make any sense. I desperately wanted it all to end, but could not leave.

    Then the fear and doubts began. Though I have experienced the normal periods of questioning, I have never come so close to abandoning my faith as I did that night. I could not pray to God. I tried as hard as I could, but I couldn’t. Out of desperation, I called upon the saints to articulate my prayers and rescue me from this living nightmare. Though I had never prayed with the saints before, I began to understand the Church’s teaching of the unity within the One Body. I pleaded with the saints in Heaven to offer God the prayers I was unable to formulate.

    Does that sound to you like he “performed an exorcism”?

    Jindal goes on to describe his own attempts to relate to the situation, his own efforts to pray, and his contemporaneous feelings that he was finally beginning to understand the Catholic faith’s reverence for and practice of praying to the Virgin Mary.

    His friend, and others who were present, clearly came away with a firm belief that some important spiritual change had occurred during the session, but no priest was in attendance, and it was not a formal “exorcism” in any sense. As for Jindal’s conclusions, here’s how his essay ends:

    I left that classroom with a powerful belief in Mary’s intercessions and with many questions about spiritual warfare; I also learned a lasting lesson in hu­mility and the limits of human understanding. Was the purpose of that night served when so many indi­viduals were inducted into the Church? Did I witness spiritual warfare? I do not have the answers, but I do believe in the reality of spirits, angels, and other re­lated phenomena that I can neither touch nor see.

    Now you may mock him for his faith if you wish. You may mock the Catholic faith for believing in things like holy water and transubstantiation of communion wafers if you wish. You may mock him for “belief in the rality of spirits, angels, and other related phenomena,” but if you do so, in fairness, you should not that he disclaims any ability to “touch or see” them.

    But don’t claim that Jindal claims to have performed an exorcism. That would be a lie.

  14. Beldar says:

    Alex: We agree that Richardson ran an awful campaign. We disagree that he has any real accomplishments in foreign policy, but yes, he was the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations for something under two years. It’s very hard to point to anything of lasting significance that Richardson accomplished in that position — certainly nothing comparable to McCain’s work in the Vietnam normalization of relations, which was indeed the last chapter of the Vietnam War. And Richardson was, in that position, not even a first-level agent of Bill Clinton, but rather a subordinate of another agent, the Secretary of State (Christoper and Albright, neither of whom I would rank among the particularly effective Secretaries of State in American history). He took orders; he read position papers; he was a functionary, not a leader, in an institution remarkable mostly for its dishonesty and ineffectiveness (by which I mean the U.N., although I don’t blame those who might have thought I meant the Clinton Administration).

  15. Hal says:

    I sprung for the same (anyone can read my clipping here).

    Does that sound to you like he “performed an exorcism”?

    As I said, it doesn’t matter. That’s the perception. If you want to whine about perception, then you’ll be whining into the wind as far as politics are concerned. As Obama about whether he’s perceived to be a Muslim if you want to argue about perception.

    But don’t claim that Jindal claims to have performed an exorcism. That would be a lie.

    Again, where’s the objective standard you can point to where we can judge whether someone “performed” an exorcism or not? Jindal claims, in the article pointed to, that he percieved he was “attacked by Satan”. He certainly participated in the exorcism – by his own admission. Whether he actually “performed” the exorcism seems a matter of semantic argumentation.

    Again, seems like arguing about what the word “is” means.

  16. Beldar says:

    Hal: It’s the difference between respecting the truth, and lying outright.

    You’ve shown us how well you understand that distinction; I’m unsurprised, which is why I didn’t bother to suggest that you might apologize for your initial crack.

    I have a higher opinion of Steven Taylor, and hope he will admit to having been misled about the facts.

  17. Beldar says:

    By the way, Hal, yours isn’t a clipping, but a total appropriation, including the artwork. You apparently have the same regard for the copyright law concept of “fair use” as you do for the concept of “truth.”

  18. Hal says:

    You’ve shown us how well you understand that distinction

    Really. So, if I participate in an exorcism, I’m not actually performing the exorcism?

    Seriously, dude. If I participate in a play, I’m part of the performance. If I participate in a war, I’m part of the prosecution of the war. If I participate in the a trial, I’m part of the trial.

    Again, you have no basis to back up your claim. None. You have nothing more than your assertion that he didn’t “perform” the exorcism, and you have nothing to show what would distinguish someone who “performed” the exorcism as opposed to merely witnessing it.

    Jindal was an active participant, by his own admission. He wasn’t a passive observer.

    Accept it and move on.

  19. Hal says:

    You apparently have the same regard for the copyright law concept of “fair use” as you do for the concept of “truth.”

    And you apparently have no concept of fair use and what the Evernote service is all about.

    Keep attacking me, moron. It’s a great way to have an argument.

  20. PD Shaw says:

    And Obama was a practicing Muslim, or was he just observing prayer? Or is it the perception that matters?

  21. Hal says:

    Or is it the perception that matters?

    So if I bow my head in respect during a Christian prayer, even though I’m an atheist, I’m a Christian?

    Wow.

    Don’t know what you’re getting at here, but by Jindal’s admission, he was a participant in the exorcism. He wasn’t just idly watching and standing around taking notes.

  22. Beldar says:

    I would say remaining “silent and apart from the group” — while the group is chanting “Satan, I command you to leave this woman” — is a pretty objective indication of non-participation.

    Of course, he does admit to praying.

    If that’s key, then John, Robert, and Ted Kennedy, Tip O’Neill, and John Kerry have all personally transubstantiated communion wafers into the flesh of Jesus Christ. After all, they were in the room when it happened. They prayed. By your logic, that makes them priests of the Catholic Church.

    Look, “dude,” you exaggerated, and you’ve been caught in it. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt that you were only parroting what someone else said before. But now you’re actively lying.

    And you’re right that I don’t know anything about the Evernote service. I do know that copying someone else’s copyrighted text and artwork in its entirety, and posting it on webspace that you control (thereby depriving the copyright owner of a potential subscription/access fee), isn’t “fair use” under the copyright law. It’s stealing. Now, although I’m a practicing lawyer, I don’t represent the New Oxford Review. But if you posted your link on my own blog, and some other commenter brought to my attention its obvious copyright infringement, I’d certainly disable your link.

  23. Michael says:

    Of course, he does admit to praying.

    The difference seems to be that while he was praying at an exorcism, he was not praying for the exorcism. A difference Hal should have been able to pick up on.

    If that’s key, then John, Robert, and Ted Kennedy, Tip O’Neill, and John Kerry have all personally transubstantiated communion wafers into the flesh of Jesus Christ. After all, they were in the room when it happened. They prayed. By your logic, that makes them priests of the Catholic Church.

    They just might agree with you on that, actually. This wasn’t a very good analogy.

    I do know that copying someone else’s copyrighted text and artwork in its entirety, and posting it on webspace that you control (thereby depriving the copyright owner of a potential subscription/access fee), isn’t “fair use” under the copyright law. It’s stealing.

    I think the courts have decided that producing a backup copy of a legally obtained work, for personal use, is covered under fair-use. Essentially Hal showed you his personal backup of the article. Whether or not posting a link to allow public access changes the “personal” status of that copy, however, would probably be in question.

  24. Michael says:

    So if I bow my head in respect during a Christian prayer, even though I’m an atheist, I’m a Christian?

    Hal, how would that be different from praying to Mary for personal help while your friends are praying to God/Jesus for the exorcism of someone else? Jindal was no more participating in the exorcism than you would be praying to Christ by bowing your head.

  25. Boyd says:

    You seem to have loosed your bonds to reality, integrity and objectivism here, Hal. Just sayin’ as a former sparring partner.

  26. Hal says:

    A difference Hal should have been able to pick up on.

    Hmmm. Isn’t the whole mechanics of an exorcism based on prayer? Unless you’re telling me that there’s some micro biological basis, like the Star Wars “force”, that we’re supposed to be believing is responsible for the exorcism, it’s pretty well understood that an exorcism is done by God’s will alone, and that the exorcists are merely praying by beseeching God to exorcise the demon.

    I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt that you were only parroting what someone else said before. But now you’re actively lying.

    Wow. Love to hear it. Keep it coming. Meanwhile, you have yet to actually substantively answer my points. Advantage, you!

    I do know that copying someone else’s copyrighted text and artwork in its entirety, and posting it on webspace that you control (thereby depriving the copyright owner of a potential subscription/access fee), isn’t “fair use” under the copyright law. It’s stealing.

    As Michael points out, I’m showing you my back up copy in an argument where the content is relevant.

    In any event, if you aren’t a lawyer and don’t represent the Oxford Review, then WTF are you whining about? Oh yea! It’s an ad hominem attack on me to distract from the fact that you can’t substantively answer my arguments and rather have to resort to attacks on my person.

    Classy.

  27. Beldar says:

    Michael: I’m not a Catholic; my analogy may indeed be flawed; and I don’t know how the Pope would opine on whether Jindal “participated” in the exorcism or not (and I gather that he did express some opinions on exorcisms when he was merely “Cardinal Ratzinger,” before he became Pope, but I don’t know any details at all). On religious matters, I’m only giving lay opinions, I ought to have made clear.

    Posting a link here so that everyone who reads this post can read the entire copyrighted Jindal article is entirely inconsistent with the personal-backup copy (aka “Betamax defense”) to copyright infringement claims. If the copyright holder sends Hal’s service a proper DMCA notice, they’ll zap it in a New York minute; were I their lawyers, I’d advise them to cancel his account. I’ve already offered my free legal advice to Dr. Joyner about the link, but I’m not his lawyer either.

    As a policy matter, I’d hope the copyright holder would waive its rights and release the entire article into the public domain. It’s actually a very interesting, very articulate discussion of someone grappling with very subjective issues of faith. I don’t regret the $1.50 it cost me to read the whole thing.

    And I have zero doubt whatsoever that were Jindal to become McCain’s Veep nominee, and were the netroots to continue to harp on this issue, Jindal could very effectively shame them for doing so with every American who has an ounce of decency and an ounce of respect for the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment, regardless of their personal religious beliefs.

  28. Michael says:

    Hmmm. Isn’t the whole mechanics of an exorcism based on prayer?

    It’s based on prayer for the exorcism of demons. If I pray for ice-cream during an exorcism, I’m not a participant.

    As Michael points out, I’m showing you my back up copy in an argument where the content is relevant.

    Only you’re not just showing him, you’re making it available to anybody on the internet. That distinction might put you on the wrong side of copyright law.

  29. Hal says:

    Jindal was no more participating in the exorcism than you would be praying to Christ by bowing your head.

    Again, the mechanics of exorcism are precisely that of prayer. So, it’s like saying that someone merely shot a gun, so how could they be participating in a war.

    Bowing my head in respect isn’t praying. It’s showing respect for someone’s religion rather than making a big show of how I don’t believe in it. Praying to Mary for support during an exorcism is like supplying bullets to the front line. I guess you’re not actually shooting the gun, but logistically you’re still part of the war effort.

    Further

    Whenever I concentrated long enough to begin prayer, I felt some type of physical force distracting me. It was as if something was pushing down on my chest, making it very hard for me to breathe. Being a biology major at the time, I greeted this feeling with skepticism and rational explanations. I checked my pulse for signs of nervousness and wondered what could cause such a sensation. Shortness of breath is a common symptom that can mean very little or may signal the onslaught of a fatal stroke. Though I could find no cause for my chest pains, I was very scared of what was happening to me and Susan. I began to think that the demon would only attack me if I tried to pray or fight back; thus, I resigned myself to leav­ing it alone in an attempt to find peace for myself.

    By Jindal’s own admission, his prayers were considered to be part of the attack on the demon – i.e. it was reacted to by teh demon as part of the effort.

    So, it’s hard for me to understand how he didn’t participate in the exorcism and was simply a passive observer.

  30. Hal says:

    If I pray for ice-cream during an exorcism, I’m not a participant.

    But he wasn’t just praying for ice cream. As my quote shows above, Jindal believes he was attacked for his prayers by the demon. Why would he believe this if he didn’t think his prayers were part of the exorcism. Further, in a previous part of the article, he describes taking part of a “group” prayer, which is what triggered the demon’s reaction.

    Again, he clearly believed he was a part of this exorcism.

    And I must emphasize again, no one has come out with some objective criteria by which we can determine what “participation” in an exorcism means.

    That distinction might put you on the wrong side of copyright law.

    Maybe. I await the DMCA take down notice. Until then, it’s completely immaterial to the argument, no?

  31. Michael says:

    I’ve already offered my free legal advice to Dr. Joyner about the link, but I’m not his lawyer either.

    James is probably okay here, wasn’t there a recent ruling that website owners were not liable for the legality of the content users post on their site? Of course if James got a DMCA take down and then didn’t comply, then there might be trouble for him.

    As a policy matter, I’d hope the copyright holder would waive its rights and release the entire article into the public domain. It’s actually a very interesting, very articulate discussion of someone grappling with very subjective issues of faith.

    Not public domain, but certainly freely available (public domain would allow for the distribution of modified versions, which would not be ideal). This was the first I’ve heard the details of the event, and it cleared up my misgivings about it, and showed a very favorable side of Jindal. Why he hasn’t been more public with it I don’t understand.

    And I have zero doubt whatsoever that were Jindal to become McCain’s Veep nominee, and were the netroots to continue to harp on this issue, Jindal could very effectively shame them for doing so with every American who has an ounce of decency and an ounce of respect for the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment, regardless of their personal religious beliefs.

    Lashing out at the nebulous “netroots” would be a waste of effort, and would only keep the meme around as a current topic. McCain isn’t running against the netroots, he’s running against Senator Obama. I doubt the Obama camp would try and run with something like this, they’d have little to gain and much to lose.

  32. Hal says:

    James is probably okay here, wasn’t there a recent ruling that website owners were not liable for the legality of the content users post on their site?

    Um, gee. Where’s the content posted on here? It’s a link. The content is on Evernote’s site. I just found out that Beldar really is a trial lawyer, so I’m not surprised by this, but really. If I posted the entire content in a comment, that might be cause for a DMCA takedown. But a link to somewhere else?

    Geebus. It’s no wonder the IP laws in this country are completely mad.

  33. Michael says:

    Again, the mechanics of exorcism are precisely that of prayer. So, it’s like saying that someone merely shot a gun, so how could they be participating in a war.

    If they shot a duck during a time of war, I certainly wouldn’t suggest that made them a participant in the war, would you?

    Praying to Mary for support during an exorcism is like supplying bullets to the front line. I guess you’re not actually shooting the gun, but logistically you’re still part of the war effort.

    No, it’s like shooting a duck. While the two actions may appear similar on the surface, the intent and the target are what makes them completely different.

    By Jindal’s own admission, his prayers were considered to be part of the attack on the demon – i.e. it was reacted to by teh demon as part of the effort.

    If a duck hunter gets shot by a soldier, that still doesn’t make him a participant in the war (though he would be a casualty, the same can be said for Jindal).

    But he wasn’t just praying for ice cream. As my quote shows above, Jindal believes he was attacked for his prayers by the demon.

    Your quote above also makes clear that Jindal was not praying against the demon. In fact, it explicitly says he decided not to pray against the demon.

    Again, he clearly believed he was a part of this exorcism.

    As a casualty, not a participant. Again with the duck hunter analogy.

    And I must emphasize again, no one has come out with some objective criteria by which we can determine what “participation” in an exorcism means.

    How about this: “Making at attempt to remove a demon from a possessed host”? By Jindals’ own admission, which you quoted approvingly, he was making no such attempt.

    Maybe. I await the DMCA take down notice. Until then, it’s completely immaterial to the argument, no?

    Yes it is, I was just attempting to clarify for both you and Belder.

  34. Michael says:

    Um, gee. Where’s the content posted on here? It’s a link. The content is on Evernote’s site.

    The “making available” theory isn’t entirely dead yet.

    If I posted the entire content in a comment, that might be cause for a DMCA takedown. But a link to somewhere else?

    Plenty of link sites have been taken down, and their operators prosecuted, for doing nothing more than providing links to illegal copies for music and video.

  35. Beldar says:

    Hal: It won’t be you that gets the DMCA notice. It would be Evernote. You, the New Oxford Review could just sue outright. I don’t know how to point out that you’re violating, and ignorant of, federal copyright law without you interpreting that as an ad hominem argument, but I will agree that it’s not central to the question of whether Bobby Jindal is, or has ever claimed to be, an exorcist.

    You fault me for lack of specifics. To the contrary, my first post included the first specifics of this whole thread, when I included a link to the TIME blog post that contained an excerpt. Then I included a more pertinent excerpt, regarding him standing silent and apart while others chanted, which I took the trouble to bold-face, and then to repeat in a later comment. But you continue to ignore those things too.

    I’ll indulge in one more brief excerpt from Jindal’s article (boldface and italics again mine):

    Susan [the allegedly possessed subject] still struggles with the theological implica­tions of her experience. Though she recalls nothing of what happened that night, the tidbits she hears from others terrify her. Can a Christian be “possessed”? What precipitated her attack and will it happen again? Susan has talked with ministers, charismatic pastors, and others. It took months before we could reestablish our friendship and she was able to trust me. Though I do not have the answers she desperately seeks, I have provided comfort and support whenever Susan has fears or doubts. With holy water and blessed crucifixes, I have even given her physical protection from the de­mons that have only once reappeared, and then for a mere moment. We have resolved the tension in our relationship and I am developing the ability to selflessly care for others.

    Now, I don’t know for sure whether in the next to last sentence Jindal was referring to a literal demon or a metaphorical one. In the concluding paragraph of the essay, which I quoted earlier, he says he believes in “the reality of spirits, angels, and other re­lated phenomena that [he] can neither touch nor see.” Were I to guess, I’d guess from the context that he was giving her the benefit of the doubt about her perception that “demons” had briefly returned.

    But as to whether “a Christian can be possessed,” we know that Jindal very clearly insists that “[he] does not have the answers she desperately seeks.”

    That simply cannot be squared with the assertion that Jindal is an exorcist, or considers himself to be one, or has represented that he has performed an exorcism.

    This article, so far as I know, is the sole basis for anyone to make those claims about him. The article doesn’t just fail to support the claims, it disproves them. Anyone who’s read the article — not just you — and nevertheless continues to make these claims is, therefore, a liar (at least on this occasion and on this topic).

  36. Michael says:

    But as to whether “a Christian can be possessed,” we know that Jindal very clearly insists that “[he] does not have the answers she desperately seeks.”

    I may be going out on a limb here, but based on my experience such a question, given the person asking it, is less about whether she was really possessed by a demon, and more about whether she was really a Christian. That may be the question Jindal doesn’t have the answer to.

  37. sam says:

    On the other hand, his belief in things like exorcism

    Hey, don’t leave out creationism.

  38. Hal says:

    It won’t be you that gets the DMCA notice. It would be Evernote. I mean, duh. I said “I await it”, I didn’t say I was going to receive it.

    You, the New Oxford Review could just sue outright.

    Again, I await the lawsuit. My lawyers are standing ready at the breach.

    I will agree that it’s not central to the question of whether Bobby Jindal is, or has ever claimed to be, an exorcist.

    Again, to be blunt, then why the hell bring it up at all? Seriously, just stick to the issue and forget the personal attacks.

    But you continue to ignore those things too.

    No, I don’t. It matters not whether he was “standing apart” for a while. It’s quite clear from his account that he actively participated, felt attacked for his participation. His article is a description of the struggle with his own faith and his own self admitted participation in the exorcism.

    As to “specifics”, what I requested and still have not received, is any objective measure of “participation” in an exorcism. Heck, forget the “objective” part and just show me something that defines what it means to “take part” in an exorcism.

    But you continue to ignore those things too.

    You keep asserting that, but I don’t see any evidence – of course I’m biased. But hey, I’m not the one who’s throwing about accusations of lying and wondering off into DMCA arguments that have nothing to do with the argument at hand.

    Seriously. He claims to be attacked for his prayers during the exorcism. He certainly strongly implies that his prayers were part of the exorcism, which is what his whole “struggle with faith” theme that he’s pushing is all about. He was part of the “group prayer” that triggered the whole event.

    I mean, just tell me what your criteria is for participating in an exorcism and perhaps we can start from there.

  39. Beldar says:

    Michael: However literal or figurative “Susan” was in her questioning, Jindal put the word “possessed” in quotes, and followed that by saying he didn’t have the answer. Someone who believed himself to be an exorcist, or to have successfully performed an exorcism, could not answer that question “I don’t have the answer” under any interpretation of its literalness.

    Regarding my unpaid, unsolicited advice to Dr. Joyner: the Digital Millennium Copyright Act was intended to give those controlling websites a safe harbor, but that’s worked out to be less clear in practice than was originally hoped. My advice that he disable the link is conservative advice based on the trivial ease with which that can be done, as compared to the risk (whether great or small) of future expense, inconvenience, and potential liability. I don’t mean to imply that he would definitely be liable for Hal’s copyright infringement. Nor, on my own website, would I wait for a DMCA notice before zapping something that I thought even implicitly condoned stealing others’ intellectual property, but that’s partly a moral judgment. A counter-argument would be that by zapping the link before getting a DMCA notice, one is implicitly acknowledging potential liabilities that one would rather insist on denying, or setting a bad precedent, or establishing a greater degree of control over or assent to commenters’ actions than actually exists. I acknowledge those arguments, which is why I’d characterize my advice as “conservative.”

  40. Beldar says:

    Hal wrote,

    I mean, just tell me what your criteria is for participating in an exorcism and perhaps we can start from there.

    Okay. From Dictionary.com‘s definition of “exorcise”:

    1. to seek to expel (an evil spirit) by adjuration or religious or solemn ceremonies: to exorcise a demon.

    2. to free (a person, place, etc.) of evil spirits or malignant influences.

    I would cite as an example of “seek[ing] to expel an evil spirit” the chanting of phrases like “Satan, I command you to leave this woman,” or “We exhort all demons to leave in the name of Christ.”

    Being in the room while that happens, or failing to interfere with it, or wondering whether it’s working and whether demons really can possess someone, I would not characterize as “participating in an exorcism.”

    I would characterize standing apart and silent while others are so chanting as demonstrating one’s non-participation in their attempted exorcism. I eagerly await your alternate explanation of why and how standing apart and remaining silent is every bit as participatory as standing together and chanting.

    I would not characterize contemporaneous prayers directed to any other purposes than to “seek to expel … a demon” or to “free a person … of evil spirits” as being participation in an exorcism.

  41. Michael says:

    Michael: However literal or figurative “Susan” was in her questioning, Jindal put the word “possessed” in quotes, and followed that by saying he didn’t have the answer. Someone who believed himself to be an exorcist, or to have successfully performed an exorcism, could not answer that question “I don’t have the answer” under any interpretation of its literalness.

    Perhaps, I’m unsure of how to read the quotes around “possessed” in his quote. But I would think that:

    With holy water and blessed crucifixes, I have even given her physical protection from the de­mons

    is a pretty clear admission of his belief that the demons physically possessed her.

  42. Hal says:

    I eagerly await your alternate explanation of why and how standing apart and remaining silent is every bit as participatory as standing together and chanting.

    I, like many other students feeling the effects of the night, was swaying from exhaustion. I was mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually drained of everything I possessed. I was ready to give up. I rubbed my hands over my face and through my hair in an attempt to stir hidden reserves of energy. Though her eyes had been closed the entire time and I was kneeling several feet away, Susan must have sensed my actions. Addressing me for the second and last time, Susan told me to leave because I was tired.

    gave up all attempts at prayer and admitted conditional defeat.

    It may have been I was trying too hard to pray and be there for Susan

    Maybe she sensed our weariness

    Strangely, I found myself repeating the Hail Mary until it became a chant.

    Though I had never before prayed a Hail Mary in my life, I suddenly found myself incapable of any other form of prayer.

    In the same breath that she attacked Christ, the Bible’s authenticity, and everyone assembled in prayer, Susan would suddenly urge us to rescue her. It appeared as if we were observing a tremendous battle between the Susan we knew and loved and some strange evil force. But the momentum had shifted and we now sensed that victory was at hand.

    Stacy, a freshman I hardly knew, asked about my welfare. I was startled that anyone would be of­fering me assistance when Susan should have been the focus of attention.

    With holy water and blessed crucifixes, I have even given her physical protection from the de­mons

    You did read the article, didn’t you? It’s pretty darn clear he actively participated in the event. He did not “stand apart” and “remained silent”.

    I would not characterize contemporaneous prayers directed to any other purposes than to “seek to expel … a demon” or to “free a person … of evil spirits” as being participation in an exorcism.

    It’s pretty clear that he did precisely what you describe as participation in an exorcism.

  43. Beldar says:

    Knowing that I was doing Susan no good, I quickly retreated to the opposite side of the room….

    Though I attempted to maintain a stoic attitude and an expressionless face, my inner fear must have been apparent to all present. I was the only one present who remained silent and apart from the group.

    Hal, in my own judgment, you’ve revealed yourself as an anti-religious bigot who’s incapable of distinguishing between, for example, a prayer for the preservation of one’s own faith and a prayer for a demon to depart someone’s body. Yes, that’s an ad hominem attack, as my summation of both you and your arguments.

    I’m bored with arguing with you, Hal. You’re not even beclowning yourself in new ways anymore, you’re just repeating yourself, and you’ve got me repeating myself. I will content myself with the silent verdict of any such readers who may have gotten this far down this thread as to the truthfulness of your original clever remark.

  44. Hal says:

    Yes, that’s an ad hominem attack, as my summation of both you and your arguments.

    Glad we cleared that up. It’s been pretty much your entire argument.

    I will content myself with the silent verdict of any such readers who may have gotten this far down this thread as to the truthfulness of your original clever remark.

    Well, alright then.

  45. Jim says:

    I see McCain and Obama as Diet Pepsi with Lemon and Diet Pepsi with Lime. I won’t vote for Obama, but the only way I’ll vote for McCain is if he changes course on illegal immigration or picks a VP candidate who is willing to take a tough stand against illegal aliens.

  46. Hal says:

    I forgot to post this YouTube video of Beldar’s defense of Jindal and his demand for us to apologize.

    But that would just prove my anti-religious bigotry, my cruel misunderstanding of the word “stoic” and my inability to distinguish between the finer states of prayer.

  47. Michael says:

    But that would just prove my anti-religious bigotry, my cruel misunderstanding of the word “stoic” and my inability to distinguish between the finer states of prayer.

    It would also demonstrate your lack of understanding when an argument is over.

  48. Hal says:

    It would also demonstrate your lack of understanding when an argument is over.

    Dude, the argument was long over the moment he started flinging the word “liar” about and resorting exclusively to ad hominem attacks.

    Here, Michael, this one’s for you.

    Geebus.

  49. BeldarBlog says:

    Did Bobby Jindal claim to have performed an exorcism?…

    In comments to a post on Outside the Beltway entitled McCain to Pick VP This Week: Romney or Jindal?, someone commenting under the name Hal quipped: McCain/Jindal ’08: Because The White House Needs An Exorcist! Now, that’s typical moonbat twaddle tha…

  50. anjin-san says:

    Is Jindal really dating Linda Blair?

  51. Watching Bobby Jindal debate whomever will be entertaining, educational, and utterly superfluous to the final result. Senator Obama, please pick John Edwards. Oh please.

  52. Shelby says:

    Romney rocks and we need him so much to help with our tanking economy! McCain/Romney UNBEATABLE!

  53. Shelby says:

    “Is Jindal really dating Linda Blair?”

    anjin-san….That is too funny! If Jindal were to be elected, maybe he could perform an exorcism on all the Dems in congress. 😉

  54. William d'Inger says:

    If Jindal were to be elected, maybe he could perform an exorcism on all the Dems in congress.

    At this point, I would be happy if he’d just exorcise Hal.

  55. Hal says:

    I would be happy if he’d just exorcise Hal.

    Sorry. 7 years in a private, non-denominational Christian school couldn’t do the trick. I doubt Jindal would stand a chance.

  56. Floyd says:

    Every time the subject of faith is breached on this forum, it is accompanied by a cacophony of “whistlers passing grave yards!”[lol]

  57. Bithead says:

    OK, here it is, Gang.
    I like Jindal, but Romney is the safe play. We’re in a tight race, near on 50/50 as no matter. Jindal at this point is the type of player you bring in when you’re way behind, and need to take chances. McCain isn’t way behind. He’ll go with Romney.

  58. Bithead says:

    Oh, and Beldar… You too?

  59. […] his Vice-Presidential candidate this week. Speculation as to who that pick might be is focused on Romney or Jindal. Right now, all eyes are on Bobby Jindal as McCain will be in New Orleans on Wednesday to meet with […]

  60. Beldar says:

    Me, too, what, Bithead? I’m a fan of Gov. Jindal; he’s my second choice, behind Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, as a potential Veep choice. Romney is probably my third choice, and I tend to agree that he’s the most likely at the moment. But I won’t be a bit surprised if McCain defies everyone’s advice and expectations and picks someone like Lindsey Graham. Were you asking about that, or something else?

  61. Grewgills says:

    After reading the full article it seems that Jindal believes he witnessed an actual exorcism and that he intended to participate until he was scared away by her saying “Bobby, you cannot even love Susan.” This apparently struck home to the insecure and withdrawn Jindal and he retreated and prayed for himself rather than try to help his friend. I don’t know if that is better or worse than actively trying to exorcise a demon.

  62. anjin-san says:

    Romney, eh? Strap the family pet to the roof of the lobbyist express bus and off we go!

    It does have vast comedic potential…

  63. Beldar says:

    Grewgills, I doubt anyone’s still following these comments, but if they are, let me say:

    Your reading comprehension skills suck, or you’re just a bald-faced liar. I suspect the latter.

    Not a single line in the essay so much as hints that Jindal knew there was going to be an attempted lay exorcism attempt before he went, nor that he intended to participate. Characterizing him as lacking compassion for his friend at any point is also completely inconsistent with the text. There’s enough in the blockquotes I’ve previously provided to refute your claims, but if you’d care to make a wager as to how any fair-minded impartial reader would evaluate them, I’d be glad to put up $1000 and let Dr. Joyner be the stakeholder.

  64. Hal says:

    Beldar, you need to have this playing when you lay down dramatic bets on the ‘tubes.

  65. Grewgills says:

    Beldar,
    I’ll leave the ad hominem aside, but please refrain in the future.

    Not a single line in the essay so much as hints that Jindal knew there was going to be an attempted lay exorcism attempt before he went

    True, but immaterial.

    nor that he intended to participate

    Here we disagree. He clearly believed that there was a demon and that an exorcism was taking place. After some initial discomfort he moved in to give support and participate before he was rebuffed by his friend.
    The following passage clearly shows that he felt he was in spiritual warfare with a demon and found it too difficult and so temporarily gave up, moved apart, and focused on himself.

    Though I could find no cause for my chest pains, I was very scared of what was happening to me and Susan. I began to think that the demon would only attack me if I tried to pray or fight back; thus, I resigned myself to leav­ing it alone in an attempt to find peace for myself.

    I gave up all attempts at prayer and admitted conditional defeat. The effort succeeded and I felt relief immediately. There were no more mysterious forces and I was able to watch the proceedings with the security of an outsider, beyond the immediate reality of the frenzied action I was witnessing. It may have been I was trying too hard to pray and be there for Susan; however, the sense of fear and dread felt like more than mere anxiety at the time.

    He clearly said that he felt a demon was attacking him when he attempted to pray for Susan and that he found it too difficult to continue and so gave up and focused on himself. If he did not feel that he was participating in the exorcism why then did he feel that the demon was attacking him when he prayed?

    after some more activity by the other students,

    Surely Crusade’s experienced leader would be able to rescue us and reaffirm our faith in Christ, the Bible, and everything good. Even I felt confident enough to approach God once again; Susan’s lunge for the door awakened and invigorated me. Strangely, I found myself repeating the Hail Mary until it became a chant.

    This is either participation in the exorcism or prayer for himself. It seems more likely to me that he was attempting to participate here.

    When he says,

    It appeared as if we were observing a tremendous battle between the Susan we knew and loved and some strange evil force. But the momentum had shifted and we now sensed that victory was at hand.

    While Alice and Louise held Susan, her sister continued holding the Bible to her face. Almost taunting the evil spirit that had almost beaten us minutes before

    it indicates that he felt that he was part of the exorcism. If he did not feel a part of it surely he would have said them rather than the inclusive we and us.

    After going back through the article I am more convinced that he felt he participated in the exorcism.

    I also find it more than a little odd that he was not comfortable having real conversion or physical contact with the person that he considered his best friend.

    All of this is really unimportant since Jindal has clearly stated that he will not be on the ticket with McCain and I don’t plan on living in Louisiana.