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I'd contribute to her defense if she gets caught.
September 16, 2008 2:29 PM   Subscribe

"A few hours after the interview, an unknown woman helped herself to Schwartz's resources."
posted by sp dinsmoor (125 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Yes. This has been quite the topic of conversation on MnSpeak.
posted by Astro Zombie at 2:32 PM on September 16, 2008


The haul included a $30,000 watch, a $20,000 ring, a necklace valued at $5,000, earrings priced at $4,000 and a Prada belt valued at $1,000, police said.

And you say this thief was a woman?
posted by Dave Faris at 2:35 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


Wow. I'm usually against crime in any form, but it's hard to avoid a bit of schadenfreude when the crime victim has been quoted as saying, smilingly "Less taxes and more war".

And what the hell is a "single man" doing carting around 50 grand in jewelry on a political trip? If he was trying to get fucked, he certainly achieved it.
posted by SaintCynr at 2:35 PM on September 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


Look, I don't think much of this guy's politics either, but is MeFi really about doing this type of thing? A schadenfreude thread?
posted by never used baby shoes at 2:36 PM on September 16, 2008 [3 favorites]


She was bringing his possessions freedom and democracy.
posted by delmoi at 2:36 PM on September 16, 2008 [24 favorites]


It's embarrassing to admit that I was a target of a crime. I was drugged and had about $50,000 of personal items stolen, not the inflated number that the media is reporting from an inaccurate police report," he said. "As a single man, I was flattered by the attention of a beautiful woman who introduced herself to me. I used poor judgment."

It's called "getting rolled" Nimrod.

It's kinda like your Iraq war: She invaded your space, bombed your drink, planted her flag, and took your oil because she thought she deserved it - and you looked like a Republican chump loser who would be an easy target. Looks like she was right.
posted by three blind mice at 2:38 PM on September 16, 2008 [18 favorites]


Doesn't anyone go for the kidneys anymore?
posted by phirleh at 2:38 PM on September 16, 2008 [24 favorites]


Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.

The tag line at the end of the interview video should have read, "What idiocy looks like."
posted by chuq at 2:38 PM on September 16, 2008


Ha ha! I see your Schwartz is as big as mine!
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:38 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


MeFi: really about schadenfreude.
posted by fixedgear at 2:39 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


is MeFi really about doing this type of thing?

No. You're right. To paraphrase The Dude: This justice will not stand, man.
posted by Dave Faris at 2:42 PM on September 16, 2008


This is a pretty weak FPP; some guy whose politics are probably disagreeable to many here gets robbed, and now we gloat about it?

Seems like a pointless exercise to me. At least it's appropriately tagged "shadenfreude".
posted by Kadin2048 at 2:42 PM on September 16, 2008


WTF.Why do all these people say noocular? Bush, Palin, Schwartz. Is it a disease or what?
posted by Xurando at 2:43 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


I have nothing to contribute to this discussion.

I only posted this comment in the hope of getting some favorites from people who hop up and down and froth at the mouth when the words "GOP" and "Republican" are invoked on MetaFilter.
posted by jason's_planet at 2:44 PM on September 16, 2008 [9 favorites]


>>Is it a disease or what?

In a manner of speaking.
posted by SaintCynr at 2:44 PM on September 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


I'd hope that the police could tell that the guy in the video was drugged well before he ever got back to his room.
posted by milkrate at 2:45 PM on September 16, 2008


What, no Mel Brooks tag?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:45 PM on September 16, 2008


MAY THE SCHWARTZ BE WITH YOU
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:46 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


What. A. Douche.
posted by photoslob at 2:46 PM on September 16, 2008


And what the hell is a "single man" doing carting around 50 grand in jewelry on a political trip?

Showing off. It succeeded in making him an attractive target, unfortunately for him.

If I were a) single, 2) a DNC delegate, c) a careless fool and 4) roofied and ripped off by someone I had picked up in a bar and brought to my hotel room, the haul would have looked more like this:

A $75 watch (half off at Stein Mart!), two $120 rings, a necklace valued at $30, no earrings and a Perry Ellis outlet store belt valued at $35. Even that seems extravagant when put into the same sentence. Actually, the thief's biggest haul would have been my iPhone.
posted by chuq at 2:52 PM on September 16, 2008 [3 favorites]


And you say this thief was a woman?

women steal THIS but men steal THIS amirite??
posted by DU at 2:53 PM on September 16, 2008


I wouldn't wish a robbery (no matter how attractive) on anyone. It's rather lousy to make fun of the victim...

But given the video, his politics and his proclivity for vanity baubles (a $1000 belt!?) it's hard hold back a smile.
posted by aladfar at 2:53 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


"We She deserve[s] reimbursement."
posted by nickyskye at 2:58 PM on September 16, 2008


You people are way too trusting. There is no way his personal items are worth that. He inflated their value in the police report because he's going to file a grossly inflated claim with his homeowner's insurance.

There is a class of people who will always seek to be compensated for every hardship they suffer, even when the hardship is is their fault, and even when the compensation is taken from a thrid party who did not otherwise wrong them.
posted by Pastabagel at 2:59 PM on September 16, 2008 [22 favorites]


As much as this made me chuckle, I have to say that the current trend of political polarization and tendency to mock the foibles of one's ideological opponents does not bode well.

There are more than two sides. Or is the truth that there's one side, and pissing on others soaks you, too?
posted by SaintCynr at 3:01 PM on September 16, 2008


This is a silly post, and "schadenfreude" has a "c" in it.

Also, yeah, the guy was probably trying to float an inflated insurance claim and then thought better of it. But "Asshole gets roofied and robbed" doesn't fill my heart with joy.
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:07 PM on September 16, 2008


The haul included a $30,000 watch, a $20,000 ring, a necklace valued at $5,000, earrings priced at $4,000 and a Prada belt valued at $1,000, police said.

How these people get off calling anyone else "elitist" or use the term as a pejorative is beyond me.
posted by quin at 3:10 PM on September 16, 2008 [8 favorites]


Honestly, when he said "We deserve reimbursement", referring to his take Iran's oil comment, what did he mean? Is that a commonly held Republican idea?

His were pretty shocking, bloodthirsty statements for a young man who is "a fixture in Colorado Republican politics" and "a respected Denver attorney".
posted by nickyskye at 3:16 PM on September 16, 2008


Because I was bored grilling sausages, I googled prada belts to see what one "valued at $1,000" looked like.

It's actually quite hard to find one over $400 let alone for $1,000 (at the higher end, I found a vaguely disgusting one described as: This 'Animalier' dragon belt by Prada...depicting a dragon and snake battling it out in goldtone on black croc printed leather. It's made in Italy and the belt is 1 1/2" wide with a hooked pin closure, and the buckle itself measures 3 3/4" by 2 1/4". $436).

Maybe I looked at the wrong outlets, or perhaps his was a custom jobbie?
posted by Jody Tresidder at 3:21 PM on September 16, 2008


Look, I loves me the Omega Seamasters and stuff, so I can hang with a $30,000 watch ...

... if it can, like, beam me free porn and take me scuba diving and shit ...

... but a $1,000 belt?

I mean, was it a flight belt?
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 3:22 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's nice to see that it's still okay to blame the victim, when the victim is white, Republican, and obnoxious.

Yay for crime!
posted by Kadin2048 at 3:26 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Looks like someone put a roof[ie] over his head.
posted by blue_beetle at 3:28 PM on September 16, 2008


"... but a $1,000 belt?"

It was a replica of Bart Simpson's belt, the one with the turn signals on it.
posted by clearly at 3:29 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


An unknown woman? Are we sure of that? We are talking about an RNC attendee, here...
posted by lekvar at 3:30 PM on September 16, 2008 [7 favorites]


I guess I should have spell checked my tags.

I'm really surprised by some of the reactions to this post. Who knew that it was fine to suggest killing innocent civilians and stealing their resources, but making light of being "roofied and robbed" was a bit much?

I do wish I would have included this advertisement for Mr. Schwartz's firm in the post. I'm sure he'll have a long career of making insurance companies "see red."
posted by sp dinsmoor at 3:32 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


I only posted this comment in the hope of getting some favorites from people who hop up and down and froth at the mouth when the words "GOP" and "Republican" are invoked on MetaFilter.

Well then, you're doing it wrong.
posted by longsleeves at 3:34 PM on September 16, 2008


a necklace valued at $5,000
Fux nem gagyi, igazi kínai vercsaszí...
posted by Wolfdog at 3:37 PM on September 16, 2008


sounds like an especially charming specimen got taken by an amazingly entrepreneurial lady.

only why this is posted on mefi is beyond me. I used to think the place for gleeful crap was little green footballs, the perhaps most-aptly named site on the web.
posted by krautland at 3:38 PM on September 16, 2008


Who knew that it was fine to suggest killing innocent civilians and stealing their resources, but making light of being "roofied and robbed" was a bit much?

Perhaps I haven't been clear as to my objection. What he said was shitty. What happened to him was also shitty (whatever the value of goods that were taken). Making a post to laugh at it completes the trifecta, from my standpoint.
posted by never used baby shoes at 3:40 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


jason's_planet writes "I only posted this comment in the hope of getting some favorites from people who hop up and down and froth at the mouth when the words 'GOP' and 'Republican' are invoked on MetaFilter."

OK, favorited.

Now explain to me, at 5 and half years into a "six week, at most six month" war, after the public paying to bail out firms that made private billions, after the largest bankruptcy ever to be soon followed by one even larger if AIG goes under, with New Orleans depopulated and the Bill of Rights eviscerated, explain this to me: If I can't froth when my country gets flushed down the toilet, when exactly can I "froth"?
posted by orthogonality at 3:47 PM on September 16, 2008 [8 favorites]


This 'Animalier' dragon belt by Prada...depicting a dragon and snake battling it out in goldtone on black croc printed leather.

That belt sounds as though it would go rather nicely with the orange and black 'shooting stars' shirt that he was wearing for his interview.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 3:50 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


"It's embarrassing to admit that I was a target of a crime. I was drugged and had about $50,000 of personal items stolen ..."

Nice use of the Passive Voice there. Not, "The thief drugged me without my knowledge," not, "I was so fucking high, man," but merely, "I was drugged." The statement implies an outside force without ever claiming it outright.

Interesting.
posted by Sys Rq at 3:52 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Who knew that it was fine to suggest killing innocent civilians and stealing their resources,

Who said that? Hell, I'm not even in favor of killing GUILTY civilians and stealing their resources.

but making light of being "roofied and robbed" was a bit much?

You seem to be having trouble distinguishing "This isn't interesting or funny" from "How dare you insult this fine human being?" How can we help you do better in future?
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:55 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Also sprach Sys Rq: Nice use of the Passive Voice there. Not, "The thief drugged me without my knowledge," not, "I was so fucking high, man," but merely, "I was drugged." The statement implies an outside force without ever claiming it outright.

Mistakes were made, dude. Mistakes were made.
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:58 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yeah... Fuck this guy. I don't blame him for being roofied, at the same time I don't really care either.
posted by PostIronyIsNotaMyth at 4:02 PM on September 16, 2008


There is no way his personal items are worth that. He inflated their value in the police report because he's going to file a grossly inflated claim with his homeowner's insurance.

He'll need good luck collecting from them without photographs to prove ownership and value, at the very least. It'll be entertaining to see him try, though.
posted by chuq at 4:04 PM on September 16, 2008


Perhaps I haven't been clear as to my objection. What he said was shitty. What happened to him was also shitty (whatever the value of goods that were taken). Making a post to laugh at it completes the trifecta, from my standpoint.

But....but he's just soooo loathsome! Please, please can I enjoy his instant-karma slapdown for just a bit? I promise I'll stop giggling soon enough.
posted by longsleeves at 4:04 PM on September 16, 2008


Earrings? Who was he going to impress with expensive earrings unless he was going to give them away anyway?

There's more to this story, I suppose. Did she also steal his panties and bra?

I think this merits FPP status because it's the highest dollar rolling anyone has ever heard of (of its type), at least in Minneapolis.

That, and the schadenfreude.
posted by fourcheesemac at 4:04 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


@sp dinsmoor: Heh. I'm sure he's already salivating at the thought of suing her for psychological injury through his Hurt Hotline, and filming it for youtube.
posted by grippycat at 4:08 PM on September 16, 2008


The haul included a $30,000 watch

Yeah, just for the record if you own a $30,000 watch you deserve to have it lifted.
posted by nola at 4:12 PM on September 16, 2008


If you bought a $30,000 watch you've already been robbed.
posted by Sys Rq at 4:17 PM on September 16, 2008 [29 favorites]


Pastabagel has it, I think. (Not the swag, the insurance-fraud-related motivations and method of the swag-losing loser.)
posted by aeschenkarnos at 4:18 PM on September 16, 2008


That's Mr. Gabriel Nathan Schwartz, Esquire , plebs.
posted by hortense at 4:35 PM on September 16, 2008


Two weak posts in the span of a few minutes. Sunspots? One's already deleted. We dare hope this one follows.
posted by beelzbubba at 4:44 PM on September 16, 2008


when exactly can I "froth"?

Whenever you like, man. It's still a free country.

I was simply goofin' on the favorite-whoring that is characteristic of MetaFilter's LOLREPUBS posts. People jump into those threads to type out some variation or another on the themes REPUBS SUCK, BUSH SUCKS, etc. and they do this largely for the favorites.
posted by jason's_planet at 4:46 PM on September 16, 2008


Totally fake. You can tell it's a viral for the new Leisure Suit Larry MMORPG.
posted by Smart Dalek at 5:03 PM on September 16, 2008 [6 favorites]


i think the onion is getting more creative and elaborate than any of us expected.
posted by klanawa at 5:04 PM on September 16, 2008


But they really do suck...
posted by Naberius at 5:10 PM on September 16, 2008


I think it's pretty obvious this is a case of insurance fraud. I can't wait to see the follow up.
posted by aspo at 5:17 PM on September 16, 2008


The problem is not that they suck, but that they simultaneously condemn others who do.
posted by Sys Rq at 5:20 PM on September 16, 2008


I think this is insurance fraud. The fact that he is also an asshole is just frosting on the cake.

Waking up and finding you've been robbed? He may have paid a call girl to meet him in the bar, for CCTV evidence. The jerk isn't embarrassed, he's willing to be quoted by the newspaper. He just needed to tone down his initial inflated "loss" - He realized he had overshot a bit.

Getting money from insurance companies could be a game for him or maybe he has an expensive habit (sure seems that way in the video, him all sparkly eyed and shit).
posted by readery at 5:28 PM on September 16, 2008


If you bought a $30,000 watch you've already been robbed.

Ten favorites.

What I dislike most about MeFi, so sorry.

Artisan cheese is OK, handmade t-shirts are all right, art is good in general. Craft is not so god, and craft that requires expensive raw materials is really bad, particularly if I can't afford it/can't understand it/can make fun of it.
posted by fixedgear at 5:33 PM on September 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


The American electorate wakes up Nov. 5 with no memory of the last two months and finds the beautiful candidate it met on that September night is gone and so are its civil rights, its Constitution, its democracy, and half the value of its currency.
posted by jamjam at 5:37 PM on September 16, 2008 [8 favorites]


Craft is not so god, and craft that requires expensive raw materials is really bad, particularly if I can't afford it/can't understand it/can make fun of it.

$30,000.
posted by nola at 5:44 PM on September 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


(should have been 'good') Perspective.
posted by fixedgear at 5:46 PM on September 16, 2008


Weak.
posted by mattholomew at 5:51 PM on September 16, 2008


$30,000. Watch.
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:52 PM on September 16, 2008


Because artisanal cheese or whatever doesn't cost 3,000 times what a log of Cracker Barrel does.

I don't see anyone on here buying artisanal cheese studded with diamonds. YMMV.
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:54 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


On the one hand, "we could beat them with sling shots" and on the other hand they "threaten the world." Moron.
posted by eperker at 5:57 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


$30K.

Painting. Vase. Art glass. Cloisonne whatever. Broach. Bicycle, etc.

It's cool, people foam a little at the mouth because it's a watch, which is sort of a utilitarian object except when it's not.
posted by fixedgear at 5:57 PM on September 16, 2008


Not to derail into expensive watches but the thing that is offencive to my way of thinking about a watch that costs $30,000 is that is more than I make in a year. So yes I can't afford it/can't understand it especially when I know there are people, and not just a few in my community and around the country who make less than I do. It is without a doubt an intensely grotesque show of wealth. My parents bought their first home for 34 thousand dollars in 78. My dad raised us on construction workers pay. I'm in the same trade now that he has been in for 30 years and I make less money than he did 20 years ago, work longer hours and can't afford much of anything. Things keep getting harder for people like me, blue collar people, and seeing that some people out there are living so well that they can blow more than I make in a year on a watch makes me sick. So it's not about the craft, it's the money.
posted by nola at 5:59 PM on September 16, 2008 [7 favorites]


nola, my dad bought his house in 1958 for $19K with a VA mortgage at under 3%. I wish I could get a loan at 3%. People buy 100K sports cars, and drive them around. 100K is much more than I make in a year. It never ends, hence my point about perspective, weak as thought it may be.
posted by fixedgear at 6:07 PM on September 16, 2008


i love this story. there *is* justice in the universe after all.
posted by msconduct at 6:10 PM on September 16, 2008


Fuck that guy. I hope it happens to him many more times, in many more ways.
posted by ghastlyfop at 6:16 PM on September 16, 2008


Am i the only one assuming he overstated to get money back on the insurance, but blew it?
posted by ntk at 6:18 PM on September 16, 2008


I'm with ntk and the other posters. It's a scam. He probably lost his wallet and that's it.

If his car window got smashed, we'd be hearing how they took the gold bullion in the trunk.
posted by benzenedream at 6:24 PM on September 16, 2008


... it's a viral for the new Leisure Suit Larry MMORPG RNC.
posted by zippy at 6:36 PM on September 16, 2008


fixedgear writes "Craft is not so good, and craft that requires expensive raw materials is really bad, particularly if I can't afford it/can't understand it/can make fun of it."

I'm, essentially, a craftsman. I write code, software, for a living, and I justify charging more than some because my output is (I hope) more elegant, more maintainable, in some functional sense more "beautiful" than a more ham-handed or brute-force approach. I put more into it, and I strive to produce less, just as as an aged cheese is much less than the volume of milk that went into producing it, just as "brevity is the soul of wit".

But the key word is "functional": that's what separates art from craft. That hand-made analog watch, all the interlocking gears and springs and jewels (which in a watch are functional) is beautiful to look at, the apex of a particular technology, and worth maintaining in its own right and as an example of the best that can be done by human hands.

But a one dollar digital quartz watch keeps better time than any analog watch, no matter the rarity of the materials, the number of jewels, or the experience and craft of the artisan who makes it.

Spending $30,000 on a watch, the equivalent of eight months of pre-tax income for more than half of all Americans, is not appreciation of art or craft; it's ostentation and substitute-penis display, pure and simple.
posted by orthogonality at 6:42 PM on September 16, 2008 [5 favorites]


This couldn't be on Fark because there are multiple links. But this is little better than Fark.
posted by KokuRyu at 6:46 PM on September 16, 2008


But a one dollar digital quartz watch keeps better time than any analog watch, no matter the rarity of the materials, the number of jewels, or the experience and craft of the artisan who makes it.

And there you have it.
posted by fixedgear at 6:47 PM on September 16, 2008


Can we forget the watch and get back on subject? Here, I'll go first:

This guy is an asshole.
posted by elwoodwiles at 6:48 PM on September 16, 2008 [3 favorites]


This guy is a respected politician in CO? (long dejected sigh for my faith in humanity)
posted by BrnP84 at 6:49 PM on September 16, 2008


I thought this was a good post...If nothing else, it was a pretty stunning example of karma at work. And this guy wasn't your average ignorant asshole, he actually went on record and smugly advocated bombing Iran and stealing their money and resources.

Additionally, not living in America means I miss a lot of the political news, so I rely on Metafilter to catch smaller stories like this. I find it hard to understand why people make bold claims that this isn't what the site is 'about' ... I thought it was a community blog, therefore defined by the community's submitted content. And if you don't like it, it's easy enough to move on to the next post.

I'm also interested to know, from some Americans, where the logic of attacking Iran comes from. It seems to me like a no-win situation, and, although I've never really followed it, has Iran even made any threats towards the U.S.? My own personal experience, with Iranians here in Canada, in the U.S., and in Europe has always been positive, and I've been kind of confused on this U.S.->Iranian hostility for quite some time.
posted by mannequito at 6:53 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


I find it hard to understand why people make bold claims that this isn't what the site is 'about' ... I thought it was a community blog, therefore defined by the community's submitted content. And if you don't like it, it's easy enough to move on to the next post.

True dat, I wanted to say something about how sniding people were being about this post but I couldn't find a way to say it w/o sounding sniding myself. I think you did a pretty good job.
posted by BrnP84 at 6:58 PM on September 16, 2008


A $30,000 watch better not just tell time. It should allow you to travel backwards through it.
posted by ColdChef at 7:13 PM on September 16, 2008 [9 favorites]


Some time back three guys stopped at my street vending table, an older guy and two college age guys. The older guy took 40 minutes to buy a $20 mesh band Skagen style watch, picking up every single watch on my table. He was incredibly fussy and critical. After he bought the watch, one of the young guys with him came back and told me the old guy was an Australian Somebody who had lost his $20,000 watch while sailing. Honestly, I didn't think they made $20,000 watches but was pretty complimented he thought one of my watches was good enough.

Over-spending makes me think a person may be deficient in some other part of their life and compensating.

oooh $250. Now that's a watch.
posted by nickyskye at 7:15 PM on September 16, 2008



Not to derail into expensive watches but the thing that is offencive to my way of thinking about a watch that costs $30,000 is that is more than I make in a year. So yes I can't afford it/can't understand it especially when I know there are people, and not just a few in my community and around the country who make less than I do. It is without a doubt an intensely grotesque show of wealth. My parents bought their first home for 34 thousand dollars in 78. My dad raised us on construction workers pay. I'm in the same trade now that he has been in for 30 years and I make less money than he did 20 years ago, work longer hours and can't afford much of anything. Things keep getting harder for people like me, blue collar people, and seeing that some people out there are living so well that they can blow more than I make in a year on a watch makes me sick. So it's not about the craft, it's the money.

Unfortunately a fair percentage of the people sharing your financial boat are going to vote for John and Sarah. Especially white folk. See the Bradley effect.
posted by notreally at 7:25 PM on September 16, 2008


Dear AskMe: I just met my soulmate--the only woman I've ever met who truly understands me and shares my beliefs. Why, she even proposed nuking Iran! That's when I invited her up to my hotel room. The evening is rather blurry, but the next morning, I found all of my valuables missing; she robbed me blind, and took off. !!Which is what I was going to do to her!! I have never been so much in love in my entire life. Looking for suggestions for our next date.
posted by not_on_display at 7:25 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


I think he deserves compensation, myself. After all, he graduated in the top 33% of his class.

Lot's of spalling, grammer and punctation erros in his CV as well.....

</mockery>
posted by tomierna at 7:26 PM on September 16, 2008


Having seriously toyed with the idea of making a skeleton clock I'm pretty certain that I do understand a $30,000 wrist watch. (This is a dangerous book.)

Begging off on expensive raw materials is pure bullshit. If half the value of his watch was 14K gold it weighed a little over three pounds. With platinum, it would only weigh a pound or so. We can add some other crap, maybe diamonds at 12, 3, 6 and 9. Whatever combination of expensive raw materials you've chosen, you've already made sacrifices to it's quality as a time piece in lieu of flashyness. Realistically, the materials in his watch were worth a 1/10th of it's cost, if that.

Then there is the pure craft. It's just not that crafty. Last year I was rebuilding a metal lathe and spent a lot of time reading the work of hobbyists who had collet chucks that were like works of art and make things that spin at 10,000 RPM and, yet, don't disintegrate.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 7:33 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


notreally: I grew up in the south, am righteously proud of it and have a rebel flag belt buckle to prove it, blue collar and white. When I go into the voting booth in November I'll be casting my vote behind Obama without the least bit of hesitation, I hope I'm not the only rebel son that feels this way. ( I understand the apparent irony, but the south is full of strange irony)
posted by nola at 7:34 PM on September 16, 2008


there *is* justice in the universe after all.

no - if there was really justice in the universe, she'd have stolen that godawful red jacket he did the commercial in and burned it

for the rest of us ...
posted by pyramid termite at 7:54 PM on September 16, 2008


People buy 100K sports cars, and drive them around.

And I'd mock the fuck out of anyone who got rolled for theirs by a hooker they met at a political convention. YMMV.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:03 PM on September 16, 2008


You are free to say "More wars" and get arrested for claiming "No War", America is fucked up.

And taking pleasure about this burglary is more fucked up.
posted by zouhair at 8:15 PM on September 16, 2008


I'm also interested to know, from some Americans, where the logic of attacking Iran comes from. It seems to me like a no-win situation, and, although I've never really followed it, has Iran even made any threats towards the U.S.? My own personal experience, with Iranians here in Canada, in the U.S., and in Europe has always been positive, and I've been kind of confused on this U.S.->Iranian hostility for quite some time.

Well, I can't help you with the logic of attacking them, since I think it's a stupid move. But on the hostility... that goes back a long time. To when we supported the Shah, and then the Iranian Revolution came. And then when they held people hostage in the American embassy for 444 days. Pretty much since then there's been a lot of hostility on both sides, Iran regularly condemns the US and vice-versa. Now that they *might* be building nuclear missiles, some in the US are afraid they would target US interests (if not the US itself).

Iranians I've met in the US I've had positive experiences with as well, but I gotta believe they're not typical Iranians (since they left). I doubt I have any real idea what the "average Iranian" thinks, but that's kind of irrelevant since the dispute (such as it is) is between official Iran (factions of it) and official US (again, some factions).
posted by wildcrdj at 8:25 PM on September 16, 2008


A $30,000 watch better not just tell time. It should allow you to travel backwards through it.

Yes, indeedy; for that much dosh, not only would I want to time travel, I want Doctor Who to be real. In either his Tom Baker or David Tennant incarnations, thank you very much.

I feel for the guy in that nobody wants their stuff stolen. Other than that, aren't there hotel safes for a reason? Why wasn't he using it?
posted by droplet at 8:29 PM on September 16, 2008


Good point wildcrdj - seems to be the norm these days that the acts of government fail to represent the will of the majority, or at least of the average citizen.
posted by mannequito at 8:29 PM on September 16, 2008


That interview is so over the top...

I'm no expert on ID'ing drug users, but my first impression of Schwartz when viewing the interview was that he was either slightly buzzed or 'on something'. It wasn't what he said (which is ridiculous enough), but the WAY he said it - his body language, the way his eyes moved, the curl of his lips, and his response times to the questions.

Somebody saw an opportunity.
posted by matty at 8:36 PM on September 16, 2008


I'm in awe of the people who can't seem to fathom that this guy is a republican politician, is an asshole and is not very bright.
Where have you been living since 1980?
posted by 2sheets at 9:05 PM on September 16, 2008




Schadenfreude is a sad phenomenon when it applies to fixation on a marital murder/suicide in the suburbs. It is, though, an entirely justified reaction to this stupid story about a greedy man.
posted by kozad at 9:28 PM on September 16, 2008


>>To when we supported the Shah, and then the Iranian Revolution came. And then when they held people hostage in the American embassy for 444 days. Pretty much since then there's been a lot of hostility on both sides

It goes back longer than that.

In 1952, the US and UK overthrew Iran's democratically elected government. Why would they do something that is so diametrically opposed to their stated values? Dr. Muhammed Mosaddeq, the Prime Minister, intended to nationalize Iran's oil production. This would hurt UK oil companies and interests. The UK approached Truman about handling the coup for them, as their intelligence operatives had been shut out, along with the diplomatic corps. Truman flatly refused. The Brits then came back with the tale that Mosaddeq was a Communist, when in reality he simply had the support of the country's Communist party, and had been Time's Man of the Year in 1951 for his efforts to democratize the nation. Mention of communism did the trick. The CIA then staged Operation Ajax to oust Mosaddeq and his cabinet. The Shah was installed as a puppet. US and Israeli agencies trained the SAVAK, a secret police force, who were in many ways as brutal as the Gestapo had ever been. The Shah ruled until 1979 in a repressive and brutal fashion, when the Islamic Revolution took place, and the hostage taking and what most Americans know happened.

So, in short, the US and Britain did something they bitch about everyone else doing, interfering with Democracy, and set the stage for the people of Iran to become our enemies, because we fucked them over.

I wonder why that don't like us?
posted by SaintCynr at 9:36 PM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


Here's the thing: when you own a $30K watch, you do so because you want other people to hate you for owning it. So there's no contradiction at all.
posted by fourcheesemac at 9:50 PM on September 16, 2008


I don't see any mention of it - I wonder if she took his fedora?
posted by item at 10:21 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


You watch this guy advocate killing millions of people who've never done him any wrong - this is someone who's actually trying to put his ideas into action, too - and then some of you are complaining because he got his baubles taken?

This man deserves anything he gets. A drugging and robbing is nothing.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 10:25 PM on September 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


I just think it's funny.
posted by wv kay in ga at 10:45 PM on September 16, 2008


Wow, if all Charlie gets this Christmas is another lousy card, he's going to be pissed.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:22 PM on September 16, 2008


I'm not sure why, but I think I'd feel less of a moron for buying a $30,000 watch than I would for buying a $2 bottle of water.

Buying the watch would make me a sucker just once. But people buy bottled water day after day after day.

Sure, maybe more people can actually *afford* the bottled water, but I'm not sure that makes them any less dumb than someone who can afford a $30k watch. Perhaps someone should drug and rob all these stupid, wasteful people as well?

Also, I'm not sure what kind of $30k watch it was that he owned, but if it was a pre-owned one that had already taken the major depreciation hit, then the chances are that the purchase of such a watch would be more rational than the purchase of say, a car. In 15 years time, the car would be worth virtually nothing, but fine watches have been steadily appreciating in value recently.

Perhaps this guy isn't quite as dumb as he seems?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:25 AM on September 17, 2008


Perhaps this guy isn't quite as dumb as he seems?

Up until the point he lost it while wearing his investment and looking for an easy lay.
posted by Serial Killer Slumber Party at 2:26 AM on September 17, 2008


I doubt it was a very nice $30,000 watch.

I hate rich people. I like it when they come to harm. It's not something that's rational or even something I'm proud of.

Fuck 'em, they're rich
posted by fullerine at 3:04 AM on September 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Good!
posted by Chocomog at 4:33 AM on September 17, 2008


Up until the point he lost it while wearing his investment and looking for an easy lay.

And to be honest, I'd be surprised if this guy had the sense to buy a classic timepiece as an investment piece. It's much more likely to have been a tacky piece of massively overpriced bling by Jacob the Jeweller if the rest of his dress sense is any indication.

I hate rich people.

If this really was an insurance scam, as looks very likely, then he probably isn't anything like as rich as he'd like to be. And being continuously eaten up by avarice has always seemed to me to be a fitting punishment for those who aspire to be rich for its own sake.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:34 AM on September 17, 2008


If you bought a $30,000 watch you've already been robbed.

Ten favorites.

What I dislike most about MeFi, so sorry.

Artisan cheese is OK, handmade t-shirts are all right, art is good in general. Craft is not so god, and craft that requires expensive raw materials is really bad, particularly if I can't afford it/can't understand it/can make fun of it.


fixedgear. I am a "craftsman" or "artisan" or whatever we're calling ourselves these days. I don't make $30,000 watches, but I do make rather expensive pieces of paper for people to hang over the couch. I know a little something about that kind of thing. I understand it, even.

To construe my comment as "Fuck Craft!" is either entirely disingenuous, or entirely point-missing.

When a person buys a $30,000 watch, he isn't paying for a finely crafted timepiece. He's paying for a giant neon sign that says "I paid an exorbitant amount of money for something that does the same job as your $30 Casio." He hopes that is interpreted to mean, "I'm a swell guy," but to many of us, it comes across as, "Hey everybody, I'm kind of a jerk!"

Maybe the fine craftsmanship really is worth $30,000. I'll bet you, though, that a rather hefty chunk of that $30,000 went to the owner of the boutique where it was purchased.

Never mind that the people who dug up the crap the watch is covered in probably work in dangerous conditions for minuscule wages; never mind that there are slightly nobler ways of throwing away $30,000. Never mind all that, because you're right: He's supporting the lowly craftsman, and ought to be given a medal.

In conclusion: Dude, it was a throwaway zinger. Deal with it.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:01 AM on September 17, 2008 [2 favorites]


nickyskye: His were pretty shocking, bloodthirsty statements for a young man who is "a fixture in Colorado Republican politics" and "a respected Denver attorney".

I mentioned this story to my father-in-law, who actually is a "respected Denver attorney;" he was the Assistant DA here in Denver under Bill Ritter for a decade and has practiced law privately here ever since. (Of course, he's a Democrat, not a Republican, but that's beside the point.) When I mentioned that Schwartz was being called a "respected Denver attorney," he laughed harder than I've ever heard him laugh.

Schwartz, well, he's just this guy. Makes some noise in municipal politics, but is in no sense "a respected Denver attorney." Don't believe the hype. There is truth to him being called a "fixture," though. We have a few of these "fixtures" here in Colorado; to be honest, this place could use some remodeling.
posted by koeselitz at 9:10 AM on September 17, 2008 [2 favorites]


mmmm....sausages
posted by spinturtle at 9:23 AM on September 17, 2008


Say hey koeselitz, glad your dad got a laugh out of it.

Talking about this guy with a friend today he said it sounds like Schwartz must be a Zionist and that's why he's into bombing Iran. His rabid "Kill! Nuke 'em." attitude really shocked me.
posted by nickyskye at 9:39 AM on September 17, 2008


I don't know if the Schwartz robbery story and subsequent discussion reflect well on MeFi or not, but I will say this:

































This.
posted by COBRA! at 9:40 AM on September 17, 2008


mannequito: I'm also interested to know, from some Americans, where the logic of attacking Iran comes from. It seems to me like a no-win situation, and, although I've never really followed it, has Iran even made any threats towards the U.S.?

Good lord yes. They've been making threats since 1979. They've made particularly strong threats since the last election; and, incongruously, when they're not talking about how the United States exerts an evil influence on the world and must be stopped or putting out propaganda about how George Bush is evil, they're talking about building nuclear enrichment facilities so that they can have nice, peaceful energy. Then the next day they'll publish photoshopped images of missiles supposedly demonstrating their military might. It's a big ball of crazy.

Of course, on our end, we were the ones (well, George Bush was the one) who used pirate radio all along the border to broadcast as powerfully as possible during the last election that the election was rigged and that good-thinking people should stay home in protest of it. Now, I don't doubt that the election was rigged, but staying home in protest did nothing but make it easier to rig; the election had no international oversight, so it wasn't likely that a protest would do anything. So far as I can tell, this was part of Cheney's rope-a-dope approach to foreign policy; he was just daring the Iranians to rig the election or even to elect a violent asshole.

And, well, they did. One or the other, anyway. They elected a president who's rash, unpredictable, loud-mouthed, and angry. The presidency in Iran has always been something of a figurehead, although less so after Ahmadinejad's predecessor, but a figurehead is important, especially when that figurehead is very loud and goes on international trips to give interviews where he denounces various neighboring countries. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad could not be more different as president than the previous president, Mohammad Khatami, who may well have been the greatest president Iran ever had and who, I believe, proved that Iran is a democracy, albeit a troubled democracy, that admits of real change.

He's a good illustration of how fucked up the west's (not just the United States', although we're the ones standing at the front of the line with a red-hot poker in our hands) understanding of Iran is. He was a cleric, an Islamic religious scholar. (Ahmadinejad is most pointedly not, so he lacks the scholarly and religious inhibition which might have prevented him from being so volatile. The clerics, even the violent among them, have even expressed quiet reservations on occasion at his strident comments) That's precisely why Mohammad Khatami knew what he was doing and he did it well, with moderation and respect: because he understood the heart of Islam, the heart of submission. But such a notion is unheard-of in the west, where we know only from dark rumors that fearsome religious zealots who hate women and wish to kill all kuffah by stoning them to death. "Imagine - an entire nation where Muslims are given leadership roles - how Byzantine!" we muse. That's the attitude that led the current administration to write the government off as a complete loss; I can't think of an administration since 1979 who felt wholly different, in fact.

The fact is that Ayatollah Khomeini was an extraordinary man. He was a man who inspired incredible respect, fostered broad support among groups as diverse as the Communists, the pro-democracy factions and the Islamic clerics, and managed to orchestrate all of those groups to positive and relatively bloodless direct change. He was a man who laid down the principles for what not only could but must be the principles for any government that is both truly Islamic and truly democratic. He was, finally, a man whose skills in actual leadership turned out not only to be mediocre but to be actually disastrous, whose moral strictures finally overcame his ideas and whose notion of what is fitting in the international sphere and beneficial as far as national action was woefully inadequate to the task of leading the first Islamic democratic republic.

The story of Iran is that, ever since, very few have seen and understood more than one side of Ayatollah Khomeini. Lines were drawn. But until westerners and middle-easterners both understand not only both sides of Khomeini's character but of their own national characters, there will be war in the middle east.

In 1979, when the Shah's popularity was at its lowest ebb a few months before he was deposed, President Carter invited him to the White House for a formal dinner and a discussion about the region's politics. Then, as now, our understanding of Iran was far behind where it should be; Carter feted the Shah in grand style as is the custom, little knowing that he was seen as a tyrant and an idiot in Iran. There were even Iranian immigrants in Washington at the time, and they organized a small protest at the White House which unfortunately seems to have gotten out of hand, and tear gas had to be used. The protesters never got near Carter or the Shah, but they were downwind, so the tear gas momentarily got in their eyes, and footage of the pair with reddened eyes was broadcast on television as part of a story on the protests and the meeting.

There was no translation of the news into Farsi or Arabic in those days, although television did reach Iran. An interesting thing happened: the Iranians largely believed from this footage that Carter and the Shah were both terribly embarrassed about the Shah's position and the broad disrespect and disdain he faced in his home country, and concluded that they were weeping openly that the Shah had very little time left in office.

A pretty odd misunderstanding, yes. But sometimes I feel like we've been making misunderstandings and missteps like this ever since.
posted by koeselitz at 10:06 AM on September 17, 2008 [5 favorites]


Geez, sorry - that was huge. Guess I had an essay dying to come out there. I think maybe I should GMOB.
posted by koeselitz at 10:11 AM on September 17, 2008


I think maybe I should GMOB.

I'd read it. That was a really revelatory comment, koeselitz. Thanks.

posted by quin at 10:19 AM on September 17, 2008


The American media doesn't usually mention that we overthrew Iran's democratically-elected government in 1953 so we could get their oil, installed a dictator and the ruthless CIA-backed and -trained SAVAK secret police that tortured and murdered Iranians, and supported Iraq during the Iran–Iraq War that killed at least 700,000 Iranians, during which we shot down an airliner and killed 290 people. (We also sold weapons to Iran during the war.)
posted by kirkaracha at 10:43 AM on September 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


"If I were a) single, 2) a DNC delegate, c) a careless fool and 4) roofied and ripped off by someone I had picked up in a bar and brought to my hotel room, the haul would have looked more like this:"

Republicans get robbed like this, Democrats get robbed like this.
posted by Eideteker at 11:17 AM on September 17, 2008


kiraracha: ... we overthrew Iran's democratically-elected government in 1953 so we could get their oil...

That's true in a sense, but it's simplistic. It's true if "we" is "Britain;" the US never saw oil or even much money from Iran, as far as I know. But that was back in the days when we saw communism as a tremendous threat (well, it did) that lurked in every corner (well, probably not). It was also back in the days when we had the naive notion that it was a fine thing to step in if one of our allies had a dispute with another nation concerning financial concerns and foreign investments. It was much easier in 1953 to feel as though defending the investments and income of British companies in Iran from privatization (which is a Communist notion anyhow, right?) was the proper and fitting way for our government to respond, especially if we could do so without getting our hands dirty and whilst installing friendly governments.

The British thought this, and a few influential people in the US thought this. Truman was too smart to think this. Eisenhower, unfortunately, was not. But I don't think any of them was simply thinking gee, look at all that oil and all that money - even the British diplomats who convinced the right people to make this happen didn't have a financial stake in it. They just bought the line that was fed them, unfortunately, in a mixture of misplaced patriotism and anti-Communist feeling.

The unfortunate thing, I think, is that it isn't even that we've always been evil or cruel toward Iran. It's not that we've done them wrong, although we have. It's mostly that Iran, like every other country in the middle east, has never actually been an object of US policy. It's like every president has just seen them all as a jumble of countries; we play a different one off of the others every year. Every time any president has ever made a policy that affected Iran significantly, he hasn't been thinking about Iran; he's been thinking, "how can I fix this other situation? Ah yes, here's an unimportant country I can use for the purpose."
posted by koeselitz at 11:18 AM on September 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Wow, dear koeselitz and kirkaracha, what an awesome conversation. It's the kind of illumination and education which makes MetaFilter really valuable in so many ways. Thank you. Sometimes a thread crescendos into somebody writing an excellent, informative essay. It can be quite exciting. How wonderful you added that treasure here.

Personal anecdote: In New Delhi 1984 I met a young Irani refugee. He said most men between the ages of 10 and 65 in Iran had died in the Iran-Iraq war, in which the USA was supplying Iraq with weapons against Iran. So, naturally, since the US was arming Iran's enemy at that time, it would seem natural for there to be residual negative feelings in Iran for the USA.

So, koeselitz, please can you help me try and comprehend why certain Republicans, like this Schwartz guy, are so gung ho about bombing, nuking, Iran? And what "compensation" could Schwartz be imagining that Iran was supposed to make to the USA?
posted by nickyskye at 7:28 PM on September 17, 2008


Forget the 30,000 dollar watch; that's pedestrian. Who has a $1500 cell phone? Show me a phone that costs a grand and a half, and isn't studded with diamonds. This guy is clearly lying about the value of his goods.
posted by tehloki at 11:46 PM on September 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


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