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Shoes thrown at President Bush in Iraq
December 14, 2008 1:07 PM   Subscribe

Shoes thrown at President Bush in Iraq. As America prepares to give him the boot, President Bush was forced to do some atypical sole searching during a press conference in Iraq when an Iraqi television reporter flung both shoes at him. HuffP has MSNBC video without ads and adds: "In Iraqi culture, throwing shoes at someone is a sign of contempt. Iraqis whacked a statue of Saddam Hussein with their shoes after U.S. marines toppled it to the ground after the 2003 invasion." This is a "gross insult in the Arab world." Value added video.
posted by xorry (286 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Surely, by "shoes" they mean "flowers and candy".
posted by LordSludge at 1:09 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


Is there anyone left who still wonders why Jon Stewart is going to miss this guy?
posted by shii at 1:11 PM on December 14, 2008


Surely this...
posted by From Bklyn at 1:12 PM on December 14, 2008


I sense a growing trend in the force.
posted by buzzman at 1:12 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


In Iraqi culture, throwing shoes at someone is a sign of contempt.

In American culture, contrariwise, it's a sign of love.
posted by kenko at 1:13 PM on December 14, 2008 [13 favorites]


This is/will be the highlight of Bush's "secret last visit" to Iraq. Not what he was expecting, since it will likely be recalled as he continues to try and build his legacy.
posted by ericb at 1:14 PM on December 14, 2008


kenko: Iraqi children giving American troops thumbs ups, on the other hand, is hilariously confused here in the west.
posted by amuseDetachment at 1:15 PM on December 14, 2008 [9 favorites]


So this is how liberators are greeted!
posted by orthogonality at 1:16 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


His press secretary, Dana Perino, sustained a back-eye as a result of being hit by a microphone in the scuffle to apprehend the journalist who threw the ("This is a goodbye kiss, you dog") shoes.
posted by ericb at 1:16 PM on December 14, 2008


Is there anyone left who still wonders why Jon Stewart is going to miss this guy?

I can't wait to see Leno, Letterman, Stewart, Colbert and SNL next week regarding this event.
posted by ericb at 1:17 PM on December 14, 2008


Wow, how embarrassing for the journalist. I mean, imagine having to walk home in your socks.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:17 PM on December 14, 2008 [13 favorites]


ericb writes "as he continues to try and build his legacy."

By searching for it at the bottom of countless bottles of scotch. His liver will last fewer years than the Iraq War has.
posted by orthogonality at 1:18 PM on December 14, 2008


As much as I don't like the guy, I'm really looking forward to the time (so very soon!) when every little insult directed Bush's way isn't deemed worthy of an FPP.
posted by googly at 1:18 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]


Awesome. Pretty good aim, too.
posted by Manhasset at 1:18 PM on December 14, 2008


Wow, how embarrassing for the journalist. I mean, imagine having to walk home in your socks.

What? He's been rendered off to Gitmo, as we speak.
posted by ericb at 1:18 PM on December 14, 2008


nice dodge.
posted by saul wright at 1:19 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


imagine having to walk home in your socks
Sadly, his feet won't touch the ground.
posted by Abiezer at 1:21 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]


By searching for it at the bottom of countless bottles of scotch.

Exactly ... and as he realizes that his approval ratings are for shit, as he leaves offices.

01.20.09 -- The End of an Error!

Finally!
posted by ericb at 1:21 PM on December 14, 2008


...every little insult directed Bush's way isn't... worthy of an FPP.

Insults, no. Shoes? Fucking hilarious.
posted by rokusan at 1:21 PM on December 14, 2008 [14 favorites]


Who throws a shoe? Honestly.
posted by louche mustachio at 1:21 PM on December 14, 2008 [36 favorites]


http://james.nerdiphythesoul.com/bennyhillifier/?id=M8GOrc0-Ygg
posted by xorry at 1:23 PM on December 14, 2008 [11 favorites]


At least Nikita Khrushchev didn't let go of his shoe!
posted by ericb at 1:24 PM on December 14, 2008


Ya missed me, bitch!
posted by ColdChef at 1:26 PM on December 14, 2008 [10 favorites]


"No no no, I said take him out back and have him SHOD, dammit!" /old horse joke
posted by Ron Thanagar at 1:26 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


Should've been jackboots.
posted by Curry at 1:27 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


What's the penalty for doing that?

I would've yelled either "Sic semper tyrannis" or "Fuck you, Mr. Bush."
posted by Bort at 1:27 PM on December 14, 2008


I can only imagine what those shoes would fetch, if auctioned off on eBay.
posted by ericb at 1:28 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Shoes seem kind of violent, really.. I like the pie tradition more :)
posted by Chuckles at 1:30 PM on December 14, 2008


Wow, Bush really did react with great reflexes. Must have been sober. Still looking for pictures of Perino's black eye. Christmas came early, bitch.
posted by Curry at 1:30 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]


That is a man who has clearly had things thrown at him before.
posted by medea42 at 1:30 PM on December 14, 2008 [75 favorites]


Boot to the head!
posted by ColdChef at 1:32 PM on December 14, 2008 [12 favorites]


I can't wait to see Leno, Letterman, Stewart, Colbert and SNL next week regarding this event.

Stewart and Colbert had their last shows of the year last week, so for them, you'll be waiting a few weeks.

This isn't quite as bad as the time they managed to be on vacation when Cheney shot a man in the face, but it seems pretty close.
posted by sparkletone at 1:32 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


The Preemptive Love Coalition.

Buy shoes, save lives.
posted by netbros at 1:32 PM on December 14, 2008


That clip, wow. What percentage of people in that audience were secret service? Was Agent Smith anywhere nearby?
posted by JHarris at 1:33 PM on December 14, 2008


Throw your shoes
Light the fuse
Can you use
Them old U.S. Blues?
posted by fixedgear at 1:33 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


What's the penalty for doing that?

Official Iraqi response: Attempted assault. 30-days in jail; 300 hours community service.

Unofficial Iraqi response: Thank Allah someone had the courage to tell Bush to suck it. A new home, a year's supply of kebabs, adas bil hamod, yalanchi, ma'mounia, khubaz, quzi, kibbe and whatever else he desires.
posted by ericb at 1:33 PM on December 14, 2008 [12 favorites]


http://james.nerdiphythesoul.com/bennyhillifier/?id=M8GOrc0-Ygg
posted by xorry at 10:23 PM on December 14

Good one, xorry! :)
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:34 PM on December 14, 2008



As much as I don't like the guy, I'm really looking forward to the time (so very soon!) when every little insult directed Bush's way isn't deemed worthy of an FPP.


I'm really looking forward to the time (so very soon!) when people in powerful places, heads of state and media personalities will no longer feel it politically imprudent to say what they really think about this sorry shit stain of a man. I sincerely believe he will never be able to show his stupid grinning face in public again, and it's a better fate than he deserves.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 1:35 PM on December 14, 2008 [11 favorites]


While I can't speak for the entire Arab world, I know that in Islamic culture, feet/shoes (because who knows what you could have stepped in) are considered very dirty. That's why you never wear shoes indoors. I grew up wearing slippers inside and anyone who came over to our house had to take their shoes off as soon as they entered the door.
posted by nikitabot at 1:35 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


That clip, wow. What percentage of people in that audience were secret service? Was Agent Smith anywhere nearby?

Same thought here -- though I'm not sweating bullets worrying over our outgoing shitty president's well-being, I'm astonished the guy was able to throw both fucking shoes without getting taken down. Sorta puts me in mind of this.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 1:37 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


Asymmetric warfare strikes again! Secret service is probably prepared for every threat towards the president, except somebody throwing their shoes at him. A powerful weapon too: you don't even have to hit him to score against the image. Way to go!
posted by Free word order! at 1:38 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


Maybe some of the agents, assigned to him for years, secretly agreed with the journalist?
posted by woodway at 1:39 PM on December 14, 2008


googly writes "As much as I don't like the guy, I'm really looking forward to the time (so very soon!) when every little insult directed Bush's way isn't deemed worthy of an FPP."

I think you're missing the point. Modern presidents are as isolated from the public as Louis Quatorze. Bush 43's father, 41, famously didn't even know what a supermarket scanner was, much less the price of a gallon of milk.

43 knows he's unpopular, but insulated as he is by ring after ring of lackeys and PR men, I doubt he understands how deeply unpopular he is. Even Barbra Streisand, a fierce critic, unwilling to upset the decorum of the Kennedy Center Honors, warmly embraced him. A journalist breaking the norms and decorum expcted at a press conference -- and in so doing risking being shot by the Secret Service -- serves to bring home to Dumbya just how much he's despised, even by the Iraqis he credits himself with "liberating".

I have a deep respect for the office he occupies, and I don't advocate throwing anything at him. But once he leaves office, I think the only honorable thing for patriotic Americans to do, if they encounter him in his retirement, is to just silently turn their backs on this guy. Just as he's brought untold pain and suffering to Iraqi, he's brought America low, morally, and he's squandered our treasury and our power and our future.

We, as a country, need to make that clear by showing him the respect he's earned: precisely none.
posted by orthogonality at 1:40 PM on December 14, 2008 [56 favorites]


Waiting patiently for the (a) Flash based game (b) a YouTube video mashup (3) shoe throwing meme to follow Bush everywhere he goes for the rest of his life.
posted by jaimev at 1:40 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


The animated GIF version.
posted by sparkletone at 1:42 PM on December 14, 2008 [40 favorites]


Truly, today we are all shoeless.
posted by octobersurprise at 1:42 PM on December 14, 2008 [14 favorites]


I can only imagine what those shoes would fetch, if auctioned off on eBay.

He could, if he were a competent businessman, spin this into a lucrative second-hand shoe business. Indeed, they wouldn't even need to throw the whole pair, as he's worked so hard to personally boost the market in the United States and Iraq for single shoes.
posted by Grangousier at 1:42 PM on December 14, 2008


If you want to understand a man, walk a mile in his shoes. That way, he'll be a mile away and you've got his shoes.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 1:42 PM on December 14, 2008 [8 favorites]


It seems accountability isn't the only thing Bush is adept at dodging.
posted by defenestration at 1:45 PM on December 14, 2008 [14 favorites]


I agree with everything you say, ortho, but I respectfully disagree that I'm missing the point. I was commenting on the fact that this FPP is pretty thin gruel, and is little more than more outragefilter fodder for the Bush-haters (of whom I am one) in MeFi to pile on with one-liners about how awful the guy is. I think that the back-turning should begin now, not later.
posted by googly at 1:46 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


Truly, today we are all shoeless.

I am Spartacus "Shoeless Joe Jackson!"
posted by ericb at 1:48 PM on December 14, 2008


I can't help but wonder if the reaction times of the Secret Service agents are in inverse proportion to POTUS's approval ratings.
posted by Joe Beese at 1:50 PM on December 14, 2008



The animated GIF version.


I could watch this for hours.
posted by cazoo at 1:51 PM on December 14, 2008 [5 favorites]


All our journalists ever toss him are softballs.
posted by Captaintripps at 1:52 PM on December 14, 2008 [13 favorites]


http://james.nerdiphythesoul.com/bennyhillifier/?id=M8GOrc0-Ygg
posted by xorry at 10:23 PM on December 14


Awesome thread convergence!
posted by grouse at 1:53 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


In Russia they throw you at the shoes.
posted by Sailormom at 1:53 PM on December 14, 2008 [7 favorites]


Too bad one of those shoes didn't fucking slam into his smirking failure-face
posted by longsleeves at 1:54 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


I think that the back-turning should begin now, not later.
posted by googly at 10:46 PM on December 14 [+] [!]


But then we're denying ourselves the fun and laughter we need to cope with the horrific legacy of the faustian Bush Administration. If we can't make sense of or understand it, we might as well have some fun at its expense.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:56 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


I can't wait to see Leno, Letterman, Stewart, Colbert and SNL next week regarding this event.

Also, SNL is a repeat next week. What awful comedic timing.
posted by piratebowling at 1:58 PM on December 14, 2008


Unofficial Iraqi response: Thank Allah someone had the courage to tell Bush to suck it. A new home, a year's supply of kebabs, adas bil hamod, yalanchi, ma'mounia, khubaz, quzi, kibbe and whatever else he desires.

As a vegetarian who loves food of Middle Eastern origin, I can say that you have done me more good with your comment than you can possibly imagine (even though some of the dishes named have meat in them). Thank you!
posted by lord_wolf at 1:59 PM on December 14, 2008


It's my impression that George W. Bush doesn't care what anyone thinks about him, and he wouldn't care until he actually stood under the shadow the guillotine with the rest of his cronies and enablers.

Of course, since modern American isn't 19th century France, he, his cronies, and his enablers will never see the guillotine or anything remotely similar. Rather, they will be given book deals, and multi-million dollar speaking tours, and last-minute pardons.
posted by moonbiter at 2:00 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Bush's first dodge was actually pretty good.
posted by gsteff at 2:00 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Secret Service Directive no. 768: From now on all Presidential press conferences will be held barefoot and nekkid. Okay, maybe you can wear a tie, because that would be hard to throw.
posted by storybored at 2:02 PM on December 14, 2008


It's also my impression that the impression I described above is true of most people who choose a career in politics.
posted by moonbiter at 2:04 PM on December 14, 2008


orthogonality: I think you're missing the point. Modern presidents are as isolated from the public as Louis Quatorze. Bush 43's father, 41, famously didn't even know what a supermarket scanner was, much less the price of a gallon of milk.

I don't know about the gallon of milk, but the supermarket story has been debunked.
posted by sbutler at 2:07 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


You sort of get the feeling that the secret service has decided that Bush is on his own.
posted by srboisvert at 2:07 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


The Iraqi people just wanted to give him an early Christmas gift to show thanks for how much he has done for them.
posted by lilkeith07 at 2:09 PM on December 14, 2008


What? He's been rendered off to Gitmo, as we speak.

It wouldn't be the first time he'd been kidnapped.

I hate to think what's going to happen to that poor guy.
posted by homunculus at 2:11 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


storybored: maybe you can wear a tie

...so long as it isn't long enough for a lynching
posted by woodway at 2:11 PM on December 14, 2008


Bush's first dodge was actually pretty good.

I like how he's smiling pretty much the whole time. Not fake president smiling, but hey-I'm-having-fun smiling.
posted by Jairus at 2:11 PM on December 14, 2008 [9 favorites]




I think what we're overlooking is the importance of the podium on American culture.
posted by Green With You at 2:13 PM on December 14, 2008 [12 favorites]


I suspect that if the recipient of the two projectiles had been Obama, the commentary here would be vitriol directed at the Secret Service.

I'm no stealth supporter of George Bush. I voted for Obama, but frankly I'm a largely apolitical person.

I became fascinated with the Secret Service in 1985 after seeing Friedkin's masterpiece To Live and Die in LA. While I was more fascinated with the aspect of counterfeiting, I was also a JFK assassination buff for a while.

Forget for a moment the politics of the president. What we see here to me represents one of the most egregious failures of Secret Service protection since 1963. What if those shoes had contained explosives, à la Richard Reid? What if he had thrown some other seemingly innocuous projectile, that had become "weaponized"?

I've personally been hit in the eye with a thrown rock. The guy then attacked me and I pulled guard. Both of us were too drunk to do any real fighting... He went to jail and I went home. Thankfully the size, shape, and trajectory of that rock was such that today I can still see with both eyes. Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

I was glad to see Obama behind that huge sheet of clear material at his victory rally. I'm sorry to sound pessimistic, but I'm afraid that today the president faces an unprecedented (and emerging) set of threats.
posted by Tube at 2:14 PM on December 14, 2008 [9 favorites]


I was commenting on the fact that this FPP is pretty thin gruel

It's a symbolic event, at the end of his presidency, in a country he claims to have liberated.

It's not the most important news of the day or anything, but there's something here. It's not just a "x thrown at y story" considering the context.
posted by jragon at 2:18 PM on December 14, 2008 [5 favorites]


Did Tube seriously just say "I pulled guard" while talking about a drunken fight?

This is why I hate MMA. That and all those assholes in Affliction shirts.
posted by Jairus at 2:22 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]


Only one pair?
posted by stonedcoldsober at 2:22 PM on December 14, 2008


Tis a pity that this didn't take place in Norther France or Belgium back in the olden days (as my 7-year-old likes to say about any time more than 7 years ago). You see, back then, they wore wooden shoes - a wooden shoe would be termed asabot - the use of which to cause disruption or merriment would be sabotage in the vernacular. Now that would be a nice way to sabotage Bush's farewell tour.
posted by Nick Verstayne at 2:24 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


President Bush was forced to do some atypical sole searching during a press conference in Iraq

Ohhh...funny. I misread that. I thought he actually did some soul searching. I would pay good money to see that. Seriously, I would love to see this guy falter for maybe a just a second and stop and think "What does this mean?" Just for a moment, because then I could point to one specific point in time where this guy wasn't merely just woodenly portraying some kind of alpha dog know-it-all asshole and that he was a human who used critical thinking skills.

That's what I wanted to see.
posted by P.o.B. at 2:24 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


OK some typos there, but you get my drift. Anyway, all of the above may be bullshit, I'm just going on what Edward Abbey said.
posted by Nick Verstayne at 2:26 PM on December 14, 2008


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

Only if he already had a hook hand, a talking parrot, and a peg-leg.
posted by Balisong at 2:26 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]




This is/will be the highlight of Bush's "secret last visit" to Iraq. Not what he was expecting, since it will likely be recalled as he continues to try and build his legacy.
"... since he's completely divorced from reality."
posted by Flunkie at 2:28 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


There are still several front page NY Times stories that no one has posted to Metafilter today. Is the flu going around or something?
posted by LarryC at 2:29 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

Funny? No. But it'd be a start.
posted by Manhasset at 2:32 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


I support that brave Iraqi journalist and I'd like to see this shoe throwing taken up by all citizens sickened by this administration's venality and incompetence. We could organize artists to provide effigies of Bush at local malls for shoe throwing and then mail boxes of thrown shoes to the White House. Maybe raise a little money on the side to support our local legless vet or a family losing their home through foreclosure. Who wants first dibs on throwyourshoesatbush.com?
posted by trii at 2:33 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


How's the secret service supposed to take a bullet for the president if they can't take a shoe?
posted by jewzilla at 2:33 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Does anyone wonder where the secret service were? Aren't they supposed to jump in front of him when this happens? I'd like them to be able to protect Obama.
posted by bananafish at 2:34 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


I mean, imagine having to walk home in your socks.

I don't think he's going to have to worry about walking any where ever again. IRAQI JOURNALIST LIBERATED FROM THE TYRANNY OF BIPEDALISM

Once I wanted a new pair of shoes. Until I saw what they did to that dude who tossed his at Bush.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 2:35 PM on December 14, 2008


Two-shoe salute for Bush at farewell visit

It's a global comedy goldmine!

unless you lost family or friends to the murderous cur. In which case, it's an encouraging demonstration of what a small and accessible human he really is.
posted by davemee at 2:38 PM on December 14, 2008


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

I wouldn't laugh, but I wouldn't lose any sleep over it. Sometimes, sometimes, vigilante justice reaps the karma a man sows. Bush losing an eye over Iraq....I'm not one to judge, but maybe it's fitting. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have lost their lives as a consequence of this man's actions. Maybe, just maybe, Bush with one eye would garner sympathy for him, and the world could kinda sorta call a stalemate with all of the Bush hatred.
posted by zardoz at 2:40 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


I watched the video and was surprised at how quickly Bush managed to duck the shoes. Usually he is late for events. Hope he gets to keep the shoes as a momento of his trip to Iraq, a nation that he liberated from evil. He can put them in his presidential library.
posted by Postroad at 2:40 PM on December 14, 2008


I was commenting on the fact that this FPP is pretty thin gruel

It's a symbolic event, at the end of his presidency, in a country he claims to have liberated.


I agree. This will become an iconic symbol of Bush's departure from office.

Folks will recall it -- and the intent behind the Iraqi journalist's intention -- in the future as they do other "symbols": e.g. Kruschev's shoe-pounding at the U.N. (as mentioned above), The Nixon-Khrushchev kitchen debate, JFK Jr. saluting his father's coffin, etc.
posted by ericb at 2:42 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


he should have thrown a bag of pretzels
posted by pyramid termite at 2:42 PM on December 14, 2008 [8 favorites]


To ease my nerves, I will assume that the Secret Service has abandoned Bush and that his detail has been re-assigned to Obama, on top of the team already protecting the President-elect.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:43 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

"Blind me once, shame on you. Blind me twice... won't get blindeded again."
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 2:43 PM on December 14, 2008 [24 favorites]


I hate to think what's going to happen to that poor guy.

What can they do to him that hasn't been done to his fellow countrymen? If Americans had 1/10th of this guys conscience and balls we wouldn't have criminals running our country because they would be too afraid. Greece had 8 days of riots because ONE fucking kids was killed - One. There is something to be said when a country's elected leaders and corporations actually have something physically to lose if they defy the law with impunity.
posted by any major dude at 2:44 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

Bush passes three-pound kidney stone

Now that's funny.
posted by fungible at 2:44 PM on December 14, 2008


Forget for a moment the politics of the president. What we see here to me represents one of the most egregious failures of Secret Service protection since 1963. What if those shoes had contained explosives, à la Richard Reid? What if he had thrown some other seemingly innocuous projectile, that had become "weaponized"?

Well, it wasn't some random dude, but rather a veteran reporter for a TV station (but one that broadcasts from Cairo, I guess it's too dangerous to broadcast in the city). And furthermore, what exactly could the secret service have done to prevent this? If the shoes had been weaponized, they likely could have stopped them by using those explosives detectors.
posted by delmoi at 2:48 PM on December 14, 2008


"Bush's first dodge was actually pretty good."

Yes, it kept him out of Vietnam and everything.
posted by An Infinity Of Monkeys at 2:50 PM on December 14, 2008 [45 favorites]


I suspect that if the recipient of the two projectiles had been Obama, the commentary here would be vitriol directed at the Secret Service.

Not if Obama had invaded a sovereign country on false pretenses, slaughtered tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of innocent people, burned down the US treasury in the process AND managed to lose that war and another war besides. Not to mention vacation while an entire US city god damned drowned.

If Obama does any of that consider a Fluvog boot in play.
posted by tkchrist at 2:52 PM on December 14, 2008 [16 favorites]


He should have thrown cleats. 3 at once.
posted by Liquidwolf at 2:56 PM on December 14, 2008


is it just me or did bush enjoy that a little too much for his own good? - i swear, there's something in that man that wants people to hate him
posted by pyramid termite at 2:57 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Awesome. Pretty good aim, too.

Unfortunately, not good enough.
posted by chillmost at 2:59 PM on December 14, 2008


It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye. And then it's just funny.
posted by kaibutsu at 3:00 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


I suspect that if the recipient of the two projectiles had been Obama, the commentary here would be vitriol directed at the Secret Service.

Of course we would. The difference is that protecting Obama is important.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 3:00 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


I had a mother that would throw a shoe at you at the drop of a dime. And fuck you up wherever she was aiming. So by the time I was like ten, my mother was like Clint Eastwood with a shoe...
posted by porn in the woods at 3:01 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Sadly, now I respect that bastard a little bit more than before.
posted by fleacircus at 3:03 PM on December 14, 2008


It's all fun and games until the President loses an eye.
posted by rokusan at 3:07 PM on December 14, 2008


If this follows the usual response I guess we can look forward to shoe racks manned by unsmiling security guards outside shoeless political rallies and shoeless press conferences.
posted by fingerbang at 3:09 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


This is why I hate MMA. That and all those assholes in Affliction shirts.

Funny.

I love MMA. But I also hate Affliction, Bad Boy, and Tap Out. ESPECIALLY those three embarrassing clowns from Tap Out. In my experience the first red flag of douchebag in any gym are dudes wearing that shit (unless they are getting paid to - which I understand).

I question the wisdom of guard flopping from rock throwing range. Or was he pulling guard on the rock? That would be bad-ass choking out a rock. I would never fuck with a dude that would choke out a rock. Now I once sub'd a stick with a gogoplata but that is not nearly as bad-ass
posted by tkchrist at 3:09 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Man, in that video he almost seemed to expect the shoe.

"Mission Accomplished! Let the shoe throwing begin!"
posted by grapefruitmoon at 3:11 PM on December 14, 2008


I can't wait to see Leno, Letterman, Stewart, Colbert and SNL next week regarding this event.

I can.
posted by Zambrano at 3:12 PM on December 14, 2008


...Bush was forced to do some atypical sole searching...

Yeah, I guess Iraqi markets and restaurants are generally low on sole. I'm sure Bush found some other tasty fish somewhere, though.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:13 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Perhaps this guy was a Bush supporter who misunderstood the American system of two terms max. In a desperate attempt to keep him in power, this guy was trying to vote for him but a certain metaphor got completely mangled in translation.
posted by popcassady at 3:15 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


orthogonality: We, as a country, need to make that clear by showing him the respect he's earned: precisely none.

How about, in the same spirit as the folks who wanted to name a sewage treatment plant after him in SF, a D.C. based George W. Bush shoe bank for the homeless/shoeless? I'm guessing there would be plenty of donations.

Done with heart, but named for a heel. Just like the FBI building.
posted by timsteil at 3:15 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


i consider shoe-throwing to be very unsophisticated compared to the Antikythera Mechanism.
posted by Substrata at 3:16 PM on December 14, 2008


Announcer: A liar traveled halfway around the world while the truth was finally taking off his heavily trod shoes today ...
posted by madamjujujive at 3:19 PM on December 14, 2008 [7 favorites]


And to think they say good old-fashioned shoe-leather reporting is a lost art.
posted by enn at 3:21 PM on December 14, 2008


I bet the shoes were laced with some stuff.
posted by amuseDetachment at 3:24 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


From the January 2009 Harper's Index:
Factor by which an Iraqi in 2006 was more likely to die than in the last year of the Saddam Regime: 3.6
Factor by which the cause of death was more likely to be violence: 120
Chance that an Iraqi has fled his or her home since the beginning of the war: 1 in 6
Portion of Baghdad residents in 2007 who had a family member or friend wounded or killed since 2003: 3/4
I can see why some people would want to throw at least a shoe.
posted by mullingitover at 3:24 PM on December 14, 2008 [18 favorites]


More than Bush's dodge of Shoe #1 - which was pretty impressive, I have to say - what really surprised me is he resumed his stance, staring right at the guy, as yet another shoe was thrown at him. Who knows, maybe he had a dodgeball flashback.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 3:24 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


is it just me or did bush enjoy that a little too much for his own good? - i swear, there's something in that man that wants people to hate him

Maybe he should call Vince McMahon and see if he has any openings. I have no doubt George W. Bush would make an incredible heel manager. Seriously, Vince, even if you can't get the real W., you need a hated ex-president character. It would be like printing money.
posted by MegoSteve at 3:25 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


I always thought Helen Thomas would be the first one to do that, BTW.
posted by MegoSteve at 3:26 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


Flash mob of people hurling their shoes on to the White House lawn in 3... 2... 1...
posted by defenestration at 3:31 PM on December 14, 2008


Helen Thomas should have done this years ago. And you know what? She wouldn't have missed.
posted by grounded at 3:31 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Who else thinks Bush has been working out on the Wii Fit?
posted by ColdChef at 3:31 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


I love MMA. But I also hate Affliction, Bad Boy, and Tap Out. ESPECIALLY those three embarrassing clowns from Tap Out.

MMA itself can be pretty awesome. It's all the people who like it and the things that surround it I can't stand.

I recall feeling similarly about Marilyn Manson as a teenager.
posted by Jairus at 3:32 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


I bet the shoes were laced with some stuff.

Shhh. Don't tell a sole.
posted by jonmc at 3:35 PM on December 14, 2008


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

Absolutely hilarious.
posted by pompomtom at 3:36 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


When the reporter asked him about the incident he could have saved a little face and admitted that some people ( millions) aren't so thrilled about how the war has gone down. Instead he failed yet another test of his character and was like: "Gee, what's that guy's problem? He must've got up on the wrong side of the tent this morning."
Equating it with a guy who flicks you off in traffic? That's pretty insulting to the whole idea of protest and humanity in general. Bush is either a seriously clueless or a seriously heartless bastard.
And I think that annoying smile thing he does all the time is some sign of nervous energy, not actual glee. Kind of like when chimpanzees smile when they're mad, or scared or something.
posted by Liquidwolf at 3:38 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

No, but I have temporarily changed my profile picture in honour of this journalist.
posted by fleetmouse at 3:43 PM on December 14, 2008


I like this story but I'm also a little disappointed. When I read the headline From Iraq, Bush Defends Invasion, Ducks Shoes, I read "Duck's Shoes" and was asking myself, why is he defending shoes for a duck? What do a duck's shoes look like? Who is questioning this duck's shoes?
posted by pracowity at 3:46 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


> It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye. And then it's just funny.

No, then it's all fun and games with no depth perception.
posted by xbonesgt at 3:47 PM on December 14, 2008


Who is questioning this duck's shoes?

I dunno, but he accused them of being quacks.
posted by jonmc at 3:51 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?
"Blind me once, shame on you. Blind me twice... won't get blindeded again."
In the land of the blind, the one eyed man... won't get fooled again!"
posted by Flunkie at 3:55 PM on December 14, 2008


"Mission AccompliaaAAAAHHH MY EYE!"
posted by Balisong at 3:59 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Richard Engel, NBC Iraq War reporter, just mentioned on the Nightly News that he knows the shoe-thrower. He's a well-known, respected journalist who lost family, friends and relatives and was himself kidnapped during the war. Engel surmised that he (obviously "snapped" at something Bush said, triggering his outburst.
posted by ericb at 4:01 PM on December 14, 2008 [17 favorites]


It's all fun and games until the President loses an eye.

Then it's fun and games without depth perception!
posted by aihal at 4:01 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


"LAME DUCKS SHOE"

The headlines just write themselves sometimes.
posted by Ron Thanagar at 4:05 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]


Hmm, those shoes could have dangerous, they could have been laced with something. Sorry...
posted by ob at 4:07 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Bush is either a seriously clueless or a seriously heartless bastard.

Now, to be fair, he could he both.
posted by regicide is good for you at 4:08 PM on December 14, 2008


Bush is a genius! He's worked up a means to get us out of the depression. Charge people to throw shoes at him. At five dollar a pop and six billion people in the world...
I just realized a trillion is a lot of money.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 4:11 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


Is there some sort of legal fund I can donate to for the journalist?
posted by gman at 4:13 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


This made my day. I haven't even watched the video yet. I'm bookmarking it to watch when I need a little mood boost.
posted by vibrotronica at 4:14 PM on December 14, 2008


well, you know how republicans are always saying that people in oppressed countries will vote with their feet ...
posted by pyramid termite at 4:14 PM on December 14, 2008


Is it just me or did that reporter take his second shoe off really quickly? He must have practiced beforehand.
posted by erpava at 4:35 PM on December 14, 2008


Is it just me or did that reporter take his second shoe off really quickly? He must have practiced beforehand.

Terrorists usually do dry runs.
posted by gman at 4:39 PM on December 14, 2008


Is it just me or did that reporter take his second shoe off really quickly? He must have practiced beforehand.

Maybe he was wearing loafers for the poetic justice?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 4:43 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


Now, that's what I call Giving Bush The Boot.
posted by spirit72 at 4:49 PM on December 14, 2008


i think the lions have their new quarterback
posted by pyramid termite at 4:51 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


Terrorists usually do dry runs.

So you're saying Bush dodged so quickly because he practiced beforehand? Makes sense.
posted by Mikey-San at 4:59 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


lame duck
posted by pyramid termite at 5:09 PM on December 14, 2008


This was totally staged. A skit like this serves as a pressure release valve for the massive Iraqi (and world) resentment against him.

He knew it was coming, as did dude beside him, who just stands there unmoving. If the thrower had wanted to hit him, he'd have thrown down, and to the right.

Fakity fake fake fake.
posted by chronkite at 5:10 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


From the HuffPost link: (Bush) "I don't know what the guy's cause is."

SERIOUSLY?
posted by desjardins at 5:12 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Terrorists usually do dry runs.

On bare feet?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:12 PM on December 14, 2008


Fakity fake fake fake.

It's a press conference, not pro wrestling.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:13 PM on December 14, 2008


Hurling shoes at someone, or sitting so that the bottom of a shoe faces another person, is considered an insult

Attending a concert by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, back in the day, when he wasn't so well known here in the US, and the venue was just an art gallery, the place was overfull. I found a spot sitting on the floor up front in the aisle, kind of lying on my back propped up on my elbows. Right in the middle of an ecstatic passage, he stopped the music, and asked me to kindly not point the bottoms of my feet at him, as it was distracting his concentration.
posted by StickyCarpet at 5:15 PM on December 14, 2008 [5 favorites]


Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?

Funny? No. Biblical? Yes.
posted by grounded at 5:16 PM on December 14, 2008


Bush: It's like driving down the street and having people not gesturing with all five fingers.

Somewhere in the cold depths of Alaska, Palin is furiously scribbling notes.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:19 PM on December 14, 2008


At the rate of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, what the fuck will Bush be left with?
posted by gman at 5:26 PM on December 14, 2008




Is it just me or did that reporter take his second shoe off really quickly? He must have practiced beforehand.
posted by erpava at 6:35 PM on December 14 [+] [!]


obviously, he honed his shoe throwing skills in some camp on the edge of pakistan. probably took steroids and lsd too.
posted by lester at 5:32 PM on December 14, 2008


At the rate of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, what the fuck will Bush be left with?

35% interest + late fee.
posted by R. Mutt at 5:33 PM on December 14, 2008



It's a press conference, not pro wrestling.


Tomato, tomahtoe.
posted by The Whelk at 5:41 PM on December 14, 2008 [6 favorites]


Richard Engel, NBC Iraq War reporter, just mentioned on the Nightly News ...

Richard Engel/NBC video.
posted by ericb at 5:43 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Italian moms are great at this shit, too.
posted by The Straightener at 6:02 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


that dude should try out for the fucking mets.
posted by erikvan at 6:13 PM on December 14, 2008


Maybe this will be enough to stop the inane procedure of removing shoes for screening at airports. Now that footage (teehee) of the incident is all over the internets, I'm sure it's made people more aware of the capacity of their footwear to serve as projectiles.

I feel like there's a Les Misérables joke in here somewhere. Sabotage.
posted by emelenjr at 6:24 PM on December 14, 2008


damn! the weapons of mass destruction turned out to be a pair of size 10 wingtips?
posted by jcworth at 6:29 PM on December 14, 2008


It's a symbolic event, at the end of his presidency, in a country he claims to have liberated.

Yes it is. And it's a highly important one, one Bush can feel very proud of.

Virtually everyone here is missing the true meaning of this event. So consider what would have happened to that reporter if he had tried to do the same thing at a government press conference in Baghdad 8 years ago.

He wouldn't have dared to do it, because he would have known that if he had, he'd have disappeared in the night, and his tortured corpse would have been found later, or not at all. His reward for throwing his shoe at a government spokesman in the year 2000 would have been a slow and painful death, and an unmarked grave.

In 2008, however, he felt no such concern. He was able to express his hatred of the government of Iraq and the President of the United States secure in the knowledge that he would live to see another day. He won't be killed for what he did. There's a good chance he won't even be detained for long.

That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

George Bush has every reason to be proud of what happened today, because of what it really means about just how much Iraq has changed for the better.
posted by Class Goat at 6:32 PM on December 14, 2008 [12 favorites]


Oh man, shoes at The End of the Error. Icing on a shit cake. Good Ol' Shoe - In Creation [from Wag the Dog]

In 8 awful years I didn't see a single photo of the Howdy Doody Rove puppet without that sociopathic smirk, except right after dodging the shoes. Finally, something that got the filthy smirk off his mug.

Bravo to the journalist, Muthathar al Zaidi, who expressed the rage that billions around the planet would have liked to show. He will likely pay with his life or years of torture for this. But since over a million of his fellow Iraqis died due to the Bush/Rove invasion he may well be remembered with an interesting martyr statue. Maybe something like this one. The shoe thrower as a young boy.
posted by nickyskye at 6:37 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


The Splice video version, so you can play the exact seconds of the shoe flinging segment over and over.
posted by nickyskye at 6:43 PM on December 14, 2008


That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

I'm sure the shoe-tossing journalist would give you a thumbs-up in agreement, but he's probably on his way to Abu Ghraib-style accommodations at the moment, where American and Iraqi jailors usually cut off digits, as a show of the mutual spirit of freedom and democracy shared between our great nations.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:47 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


His reward for throwing his shoe at a government spokesman in the year 2000 would have been a slow and painful death, and an unmarked grave.

In 2008, however, he felt no such concern.


Or maybe he has little left to loose.
posted by Balisong at 6:49 PM on December 14, 2008 [9 favorites]


Its disrespectful and I empathize with Bush as I did with Nixon when he was ostracized as well. . But then again blood on their hands. Pre-invasion Iraq was a highly civilized country with more professionally degreed females than in the US I heard. I guess we need presidents that are not easily manipulated by power brokers. .
: (
posted by celerystick at 6:56 PM on December 14, 2008


In 2008, however, he felt no such concern. He was able to express his hatred of the government of Iraq and the President of the United States secure in the knowledge that he would live to see another day. He won't be killed for what he did. There's a good chance he won't even be detained for long.

That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

George Bush has every reason to be proud of what happened today, because of what it really means about just how much Iraq has changed for the better.


Oh, for heaven's sake: in 2000, presumably his family was still intact, none of them had been murdered and he hadn't been kidnapped. Maybe THAT had something to do with what he did today and it had nothing to do with American perceptions that Iraqis value freedom above everything else. They didn't ask us to go over there and kill them.
posted by etaoin at 6:56 PM on December 14, 2008 [11 favorites]


That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

Except for the hundreds of thousands of dead ones. Because of George Bush.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 6:57 PM on December 14, 2008 [16 favorites]


That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

so when do they get to have leaders they don't detest?
posted by pyramid termite at 7:03 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]


Don't you guys know an opposing viewpoint that will result in an angry and pointless discussion when you see one!? ABORT!!!!
posted by palidor at 7:13 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


"Would we think it funny if Bush lost his eye?"

Yes, actually. I'd laugh pretty hard at that. In fact, I think it's a loss for the world of comedy that it didn't happen. I'd bask in the irony of sympathy Bush would get and muse on that as well. And the scumbags who pick and choose tragedies to co-opt and cobble some sort of identity for themselves. So - funny? Hell yeah. It'd be a fucking circus riot.

As it is I think he's damned lucky he wasn't shot. Asshead went to a war zone. He's the president. He went to a place and went out in public in an area where a war is going on. War. Zone. Where there are many highly motivated trained people with guns who are now very well seasoned in fighting U.S. troops (incidentally - it's not just a secret service failure - I assume this took place at a consulate or embassy or some other such building, it would be in part various intelligence agencies doing background checks, but mostly the Bureau of Diplomatic Security, they tend to be the lead agency for international terrorism and whatnot, so the DSS should have checked this guy out.)

Anyway, Shit-for-brains says: "So what if the guy threw his shoe at me?"
You see, in a war, people die. Many people. On both sides. On the one hand, as an American I'm offended because he makes light of this with his statement as many Americans are in harms way and would likely prefer it be shoes. So the tough guy rhetoric doesn't cut any ice with me.
On the other hand, I'm ashamed since, again, as an American this fucking idiot doesn't seem to clue in that maybe his hands are covered with Iraqi blood and maybe some folks don't exactly see eye to eye with him on policy.
At the very least he should recognize that. But no, the guy apparently just wanted 'attention' by Bush's statements.

Now I don't think he deserves to lose an eye. If I thought that I'd go about taking one out of him myself. And I don't like the idea of "the President" being harmed at all.
But on the other hand, he's so out of touch with reality it is in fact comical. And the decision to head out to Baghdad and speak publicly, even in the 'Green Zone' - is not only appallingly bad and downright f'ing stupid from a security standpoint (and I doubt anyone in the Secret Service would, in fact, take a bullet for him much less a shoe - and I strongly suspect they advised him against going) it's the height of hubris and arrogance on par with asking (well, demanding actually, and looking for evidence of such) troops in the field to pray for him.

Only in this case he ups it a notch by providing a huge motivation for every suicide bomber and his brother to attack his position and puts even more weight on troops who have been called back so many times and heard so many stories about their wounded comrades being fucked over in Walter Reed they wouldn't trouble to piss on him if his chest was on fire much less enjoy the extra duty his visit places squarely on their shoulders.

No, you go into a war zone, you only fucking wish it's only a shoe gets thrown at you.
He doesn't apparently even understand that. Doesn't even comment "Well, guys in the field are getting worse than shoes - blah de blah" Hell, *I* know that's better politicking - so it must be he couldn't care less.

Lose an eye? He's damned lucky he wasn't killed. Far as I'm concerned he was fair game the moment he crossed that border.
And, granted, I don't like the son of a bitch, but I'd say that were it any other top-level leader who's got this much venom out for him.
They should really stay out of high profile positions if they go into a war zone unless they have to or unless there's something with the words "peace" and "talks" and "finalize" in the title and his safety is guaranteed.
That could have turned out to be a shooting gallery and it wouldn't have been the secret service or the DS' fault at all.
posted by Smedleyman at 7:16 PM on December 14, 2008 [8 favorites]


Can we talk about the fact that during the interval between shoe one and shoe two--several seconds, which is an eternity from a security standpoint--the shoe thrower wasn't thrown to the ground or otherwise immobilized, and Bush was left alone at the podium? In Iraq?

Does anyone else NOT want this same Secret Service detail "protecting" the next guy in line for the job??
posted by availablelight at 7:20 PM on December 14, 2008 [2 favorites]


Box up and mail your own unwanted pair:

The White House,
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Might get there for Christmas.
posted by marvin at 7:47 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


Can we talk about the fact that during the interval between shoe one and shoe two--several seconds, which is an eternity from a security standpoint--the shoe thrower wasn't thrown to the ground or otherwise immobilized, and Bush was left alone at the podium? In Iraq?

Does anyone else NOT want this same Secret Service detail "protecting" the next guy in line for the job??


There's an interval of about 2.5 seconds between the first and second throw (and the guy looks like he's going down pretty much immediately after the second throw). What exactly do you expect the from the Secret Service? Yeah, they could have shot at the guy, but he's in a crowd, he's standing and crouching rapidly, and for good measure the walls appear to be made of stone, and while I know nothing about guns I wouldn't want to be the agent who tried to shoot an assassin and had the bullet ricochet and kill the president — and, again, he's down in two and a half seconds (apparently pulled down by fellow journalists rather than security).

Maybe they could have tackled Bush and hustled him out, but there's only so fast anyone can move, even Secret Service agents. Additionally, I'm sure everyone at an invite-only press conference at which the president is present in Iraq has already been searched and screened six ways from Tuesday, so I would think they were relatively sure it wasn't anything explosive. Bush stood right back up and looked at the guy after ducking the first shoe, so I'm guessing it was pretty clearly just a shoe to anyone there in person.
posted by enn at 7:47 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Can we talk about the fact that during the interval between shoe one and shoe two--several seconds, which is an eternity from a security standpoint
It was two seconds or less. Probably about one and a half. How fast do you expect the Secret Service guys to get to him, honestly? Especially with no direct route (there were lots of other reporters).

Secret Service agents are not magical.
posted by Flunkie at 7:48 PM on December 14, 2008


It should have been a female reporter. Wearing Manolo Blahniks.


Because, damn, those shoes iz POINTY.
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 7:52 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


It was two seconds or less. Probably about one and a half. How fast do you expect the Secret Service guys to get to him, honestly? Especially with no direct route (there were lots of other reporters).
I keep thinking back to that clip of the attack on Reagan and it does seem to me that the agents moved more quickly to grab Reagan, shield him (too late) and throw him in the car. And then when Bush waves the agent off--that seemed odd. At least on the West Wing on other movies/TV shows, the agents don't take no for an answer.
For what that's worth.
posted by etaoin at 8:02 PM on December 14, 2008


When does Bush wave off the agents?
posted by typewriter at 8:04 PM on December 14, 2008


As my wife said, its lucky for us it was just a shoe, who wants 40 days of Cheney with nothing to lose?
posted by bystander at 8:05 PM on December 14, 2008 [21 favorites]


Hinckley fired his gun six times, over a span of time greater than you're complaining about.

And uniformed cops, not Secret Service agents, got to him.
posted by Flunkie at 8:30 PM on December 14, 2008


Can we talk about the fact that during the interval between shoe one and shoe two--several seconds, which is an eternity from a security standpoint--the shoe thrower wasn't thrown to the ground or otherwise immobilized, and Bush was left alone at the podium? In Iraq?

The Secret Service is why it was just shoes and not something else.

And frankly, if something had happened, I would have blamed the person who did the act and Bush himself for being dumb and cocky enough to go into a warzone, risking not just himself but those around him.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:38 PM on December 14, 2008


Awesome
posted by Balisong at 8:42 PM on December 14, 2008


Ladies and gentlemen, I give you The Future President of Iraq.
posted by spock at 8:56 PM on December 14, 2008


I only feel sorry that the other journalists tackled the guy, instead of following his lead.
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:06 PM on December 14, 2008



Box up and mail your own unwanted pair:

The White House,
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Might get there for Christmas.


I really hope to wake up tomorrow with news stories about PILES OF SHOES all over the White House lawn!!!

(dirty ones, especially)
posted by Surfurrus at 9:26 PM on December 14, 2008


From Informed Comment

Thoughts on the Middle East, History, and Religion

Juan Cole is President of the Global Americana Institute

Sunday, December 14, 2008
Two BBC Stories 5 Years Apart: Leaders and Shoes

A journalist, Muntazir al-Zaidi of Baghdadiya Television, aimed two shoes at W. during a news conference in Baghdad during which Bush attempted to justify his invasion of Iraq. Baghdadiya, based in Cairo, Egypt, supports the Sunni Arab insurgents fighting the US and the al-Maliki government. Al-Zaidi shouted "This is a farewell kiss!" as he launched his size tens, then kept shouting "Dog, dog!" (In Arabic, it would be ibn al-kalb or son of a dog, equivalent to English s.o.b.; for color you can say 'son of a thousand dogs!')

If you search shoes and Iraq, here is how google shows two BBC stories on December 14, five years apart (they came up together like this at the top of my search):

BBC NEWS | World | Middle East | Iraqis celebrate Saddam capture
Dec 14, 2003 ... women ululated and crowds beat pictures of Saddam with shoes. ... where the Saddam statue was toppled at the end of the war, ...
news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/3317637.stm - 46k

BBC NEWS | Middle East | Shoes thrown at Bush on Iraq trip
Dec 14, 2008 ... President Bush's farewell visit to Iraq is marred by an incident in which two shoes are thrown at him during a news conference.
news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7782422.stm - 8 hours ago

posted by jaronson at 9:35 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


Virtually everyone here is missing the true meaning of this event. So consider what would have happened to that reporter if he had tried to do the same thing at a government press conference in Baghdad 8 years ago.

Sorry we are all not as enlightened as yourself but my feeble sheepish mind thought that this was about some guy hating Bush enough to throw his shoes at him.

George Bush has every reason to be proud of what happened today, because of what it really means about just how much Iraq has changed for the better.

I gotta quote Jimmy from South Park on this one. "Oh come on." Are you serious? Bush should be proud of this? He should be proud that America has lost the entire world's respect? We all know that this war didn't start to "change Iraq for the better." If Bush was that much of a humanitarian than Africa would be doing a lot better than it is. I'm sorry but that's the biggest load of bullshit on this thread, Bush should be proud for getting shoes thrown at him? You're reading way too into this, it's just a plate of beans.
posted by BrnP84 at 9:52 PM on December 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


If George Bush lost an eye to a flying shoe I wouldn't have thought it was funny, but I would've agreed that it was some small justice. I don't get why we always have to play nicey-nice to leaders or politicians or bureaucrats or whomever it is that has the barely-checked power to completely fuck up the lives of the electorate/population. And I do mean completely fuck up.

Fuck that noise. Bush is a soulless jerk and I hope a big heavy cedar tree falls on his smug ass one day while he's playing with his chainsaw on his goddamned ranch.
posted by illiad at 10:16 PM on December 14, 2008


Had it connected everyone would be calling Bush "Old Leatherface".
posted by bwg at 10:21 PM on December 14, 2008


You do realise that this is the closest anyone ever came to whacking Bush.
posted by bwg at 10:23 PM on December 14, 2008


"his goddamned ranch"

Bush actually just sold the Crawford ranch now that he doesn't have to play cowboy any longer. He's moving to a gated community in Dallas.

Our fake president can live out his remaining Scotch-soaked days in comfort without having to clear any brush.
posted by bardic at 10:32 PM on December 14, 2008


It's too bad that Oliver Stone put out his biopic so early. The footage is an instant classic. "Back, and to the left. Back, and to the left."
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:57 PM on December 14, 2008 [4 favorites]




I'm going to have to explain how this jagoff got elected twice to my kids someday. If I ever have kids.
posted by bardic at 11:04 PM on December 14, 2008


You do realise that this is the closest anyone ever came to whacking Bush.

Yeah, those Georgians have crap throwing arms, and their munitions aren't even up to snuff most of the time.
posted by FatherDagon at 11:05 PM on December 14, 2008


If George Bush lost an eye to a flying shoe I wouldn't have thought it was funny, but I would've agreed that it was some small justice. I don't get why we always have to play nicey-nice to leaders or politicians or bureaucrats or whomever it is that has the barely-checked power to completely fuck up the lives of the electorate/population. And I do mean completely fuck up.

Fuck that noise. Bush is a soulless jerk and I hope a big heavy cedar tree falls on his smug ass one day while he's playing with his chainsaw on his goddamned ranch.


If you feel this way, I would urge you to watch Clearcut. A forestry executive is flayed alive in that movie. More here and here.

In short, we have to be careful what we wish for...
posted by KokuRyu at 11:19 PM on December 14, 2008


No connection intended, btw, between the forestry theme and the cedar tree/chainsaw in your post.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:20 PM on December 14, 2008


Why was Bush smiling as he dodged? Why did he dodge so well? I think he may be back on the cocaine.
posted by tehloki at 11:58 PM on December 14, 2008 [3 favorites]


When will this happen to Bush and his cronies within the US? So much so that they think twice about attending any event or going out to do their shopping, and their children are shamed and change their surnames.

Sometimes voting out is not enough. There are still millions who love him and would have voted for him a third time (even today, just shy of half the country). He will soon move to red, Republican, repugnant, rural Texas to live out his retirement. He will be paid huge amounts of money for his memoirs and speeches. His cronies will get jobs as advisers to corporations, become lobbyists, join think tanks, or even become professors at leading institutions. When will Americans in the civilized, urban, blue parts not just "turn their backs" but throw pies or tomatoes (or whatever is locally customary and available) at this ignominious leader, a stain on American history? In my view, turning your backs on him is not enough. He is way more thick skinned than that.

Spit on all of them, I say. Each one that you meet related to these past two administrations. Again and again, until they shrivel and are living in abusive assisted living facilities.
posted by Azaadistani at 12:07 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]


Holy Crap, how did I miss this!!

In a show of support, I just took my shoes off and threw them at the wall.
posted by mannequito at 1:55 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]


'Fuck that noise. Bush is a soulless jerk and I hope a big heavy cedar tree falls on his smug ass one day while he's playing with his chainsaw on his goddamned ranch.'

If you feel this way, I would urge you to watch Clearcut. A forestry executive is flayed alive in that movie.


as long as he lives through the flaying. if it causes him to die, then he gets off to easily.
posted by memnock at 4:37 AM on December 15, 2008


err.
'too easily'
posted by memnock at 4:41 AM on December 15, 2008


Why was Bush smiling as he dodged? Why did he dodge so well?

If I was Bush, and I was visiting Iraq, of all places, then I think I'd be quite primed to duck and dodge incoming projectiles during my whole visit. And if all I had to dodge was a shoe or two, then I'd probably be smiling too.
posted by Skeptic at 5:17 AM on December 15, 2008


Bush is a soulless jerk and I hope a big heavy cedar tree falls on his smug ass one day while he's playing with his chainsaw on his goddamned ranch.

To be fair, I think the only trees in Crawford Texas that could be described as big and heavy would be cottonwoods.
posted by Pollomacho at 6:18 AM on December 15, 2008


Knowing his sense of humor I'm surprised he didn't say "Shoe fly, don't bother me" after it was thrown.
posted by dasheekeejones at 6:30 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]




In Mideast, Arabs hail shoe-hurling journalist -- ‘Bush, Bush, listen well: Two shoes on your head,’ Iraqi protesters chant.
posted by ericb at 7:02 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


"Palestinian journalists in the West Bank town of Ramallah joked about who would be brave enough to toss their shoes at Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, another U.S. official widely disliked in the region." *
posted by ericb at 7:03 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


Slowmo + Bush's words which follow.
posted by gman at 7:18 AM on December 15, 2008


What's especially poignant that I don't think has been addressed in the media is what the guy stepped in just before the press conference.

Here's a hint: the same thing coming out of Bush's mouth.
posted by Pollomacho at 7:22 AM on December 15, 2008



OK, youtubers are on it ("Slowmo + Bush's words which follow")! Now, where are the mash ups --- and, especially, the thought bubbles for the un-stunned, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, who doesn't flinch an inch through the whole thing??
posted by Surfurrus at 7:56 AM on December 15, 2008


Video: Witness on 'surreal' shoe-toss.
posted by ericb at 8:22 AM on December 15, 2008


Well, Bush did once say "Bring it on!"
posted by ericb at 8:23 AM on December 15, 2008


In high school the debate club i was in got tickets to a public debate between Molly Ivins and William Kristol. As he was being introduced by the moderator, some joker stands up, takes off his shoes, and throws them one at a time at Kristol as hard as he can (screaming at him the whole time). Molly Ivins was clearly disappointed at the breach in decorum but also trying not to laugh. Bill Kristol may be an asshole, for sure, but he's also apparently really damn agile - he dodged the first shoe and caught the second one. Saw it with my own two eyes.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 8:26 AM on December 15, 2008


bardic : I'm going to have to explain how this jagoff got elected twice to my kids someday. If I ever have kids.

Treat it as a learning opportunity for your children; "First, develop your throw, make sure you have both power, and accuracy. Second; wear good, heavy, solid footwear."

They will thank you if they ever unexpectedly find themselves face to face with former President Bush one day.
posted by quin at 9:19 AM on December 15, 2008


The Architect Of Abu Ghraib
posted by homunculus at 9:52 AM on December 15, 2008


Exclusive in prison photo of the alleged shoe hurler
posted by ElvisJesus at 9:57 AM on December 15, 2008


A satisfying version over and over and over. Makes me wish the journalist had more than 2 feet, more shoes.

The first thought that came to mind is that ducking the shoes is the first skillful thing I've ever seen George W do and then wondered how the hell he got to be skillful at ducking, is that something he learned as a kid? And now that ducking has been his only skill as a President. His idiotic, oblivious, smug words after the incident, "One thing is for certain, he caused you to ask me a question about him." Say wha? Somehow all his words and gestures seem automatically to lead to a fratboy yuck-it-up. He's brain damaged or the most bizarre Manchurian Candidate ever.
posted by nickyskye at 10:54 AM on December 15, 2008


I suspect fowl play.

by LuckyTV, I youtubed it because the nav there is kinda sucky
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:59 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


nickyskye: "A satisfying version over and over and over."

A boot stomping hurled at a face, forever.
posted by hangashore at 12:08 PM on December 15, 2008


Video: Witness on 'surreal' shoe-toss.

To quote verbatum from the link at 43 seconds: ...and I thing that for the first few seconds between the first shoe and the second shoe being thrown everyone was in complete shock and awe.

Oh, irony, is there nothing you can't make great.
posted by Pollomacho at 12:33 PM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]


That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

Yeah. There's no use crying over every mistake. You just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake Iraqis.
posted by Justinian at 12:39 PM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


And they say reporters don't know how to do follow up questions.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:45 PM on December 15, 2008 [3 favorites]


Now see, if he followed his dream as a rock star, he could have had panties thrown at him.
posted by dasheekeejones at 1:14 PM on December 15, 2008


And they say reporters don't know how to do follow up questions.

If this had been Les Kinsolving, he would have started with shoes, and then start throwing shirts, pants, cufflinks, ties, boutoniers, cumberbuns, corsets, ascots, a fez, girdles, spats, suspenders (slingshot style), and a cane.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:27 PM on December 15, 2008


That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

Correction: About 200,000 fewer Iraqis have the opportunity share in this so-called freedom. Because they are taking an extended dirt nap.

Not to mention the nearly 3 million Iraqi refugees and homeless people free to not have homes.

But hey. Can't make Omelettes without bombing the fuck out a few helpless defensless eggs, right?
posted by tkchrist at 2:00 PM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]




That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country.

Waitaminute - weren't Iraqis under Saddam already free to detest your leaders?
posted by hangashore at 2:59 PM on December 15, 2008




Why did he dodge so well?
If I was Bush, and I was visiting Iraq, of all places, then I think I'd be quite primed to duck and dodge incoming projectiles during my whole visit.
That's merely because you have some reality-based understanding of the situation that George Bush has created. On the other hand, I've yet to see anything that indicates that George Bush does.
posted by Flunkie at 4:08 PM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


except the dodge.
posted by Balisong at 4:18 PM on December 15, 2008


'This is a gross insult in the Arab world". I think this is one of the more tiresome lines the Western media has been pursuing with this (otherwise very amusing) story. Throwing your shoes at someone while calling them a murdering dog is a gross insult in any part of the world, and I don't think we need the wise, culturally-informed reporters of our media to get that message across.

Imagine the king of Saudi Arabia visiting Washington, whereupon a crazed, petroleum hating hippie flings a pot of shit on him. Would the folks back home need Al-Jazeera to tell them that 'having a pot of shit dumped on you is a gross insult in the Western world'? I don't think so.

It's all part of the fake local knowledge that Western reporters put on display when they tell us about the supposedly cryptic Arab world. Mostly it's to cover up the fact that (a) they don't speak the language, and (b) don't understand the Arab world at all.
posted by jackbrown at 6:05 PM on December 15, 2008 [6 favorites]


Ha! I enjoyed that comment, jackbrown.
posted by Toecutter at 6:26 PM on December 15, 2008


In an obviously anemic attempt to achieve solidarity with Muthathar al Zaidi, there is now a pair of shoes hanging from my trailer hitch.
posted by wrapper at 7:00 PM on December 15, 2008


jackbrown, of course throwing your shoes at someone while calling them a murdering dog is a gross insult anywhere, but that's in the sense that throwing your fill-in-the-blank at someone while calling them a murdering dog is a gross insult anywhere.

I don't think it's unreasonable to point out that, in addition to that, shoes specifically are associated with insults in this particular culture, if in fact that is true. Various reporters may be phrasing that point poorly, but that doesn't mean it's not valid to note it.
posted by Flunkie at 7:54 PM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


of course throwing your shoes at someone while calling them a murdering dog is a gross insult anywhere, but that's in the sense that throwing your fill-in-the-blank at someone while calling them a murdering dog is a gross insult anywhere.

Is that why all those news reports also helpfully point out that being called a dog is a specific insult in "their" culture too?
posted by Chuckles at 9:11 PM on December 15, 2008


"Mr. Zaidi was subdued by a fellow journalist and then beaten by members of the prime minister’s security detail, who hauled him out of the room in his white socks. Mr. Zaidi’s cries could be heard from a nearby room as the news conference continued."

My god, that is just the limit. That is literally sickening.
posted by stinkycheese at 9:17 PM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]


That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

Repeated for juxtaposition.
posted by Chuckles at 9:24 PM on December 15, 2008




Is that why all those news reports also helpfully point out that being called a dog is a specific insult in "their" culture too?
(A) I'm not sure why you're putting the word "their" in quotes.

(B) I've seen several instances, in regards to this recent shoeing, of people saying that shoes are particularly associated with insults in Arab culture. I haven't seen any saying a similar thing about calling people dogs. I'm not claiming they're not out there, but I haven't seen any.

(C) Regardless of whether there are such instances, "this is a silly thing to point out when it's about calling people dogs because calling a person a dog is almost universally an insult" does not imply that "this is a silly thing to point out when it's about showing someone the sole of your shoe because showing someone the sole of your shoe is almost universally an insult".
posted by Flunkie at 10:25 PM on December 15, 2008






They gave him back his shoes today.

But they had cut out the tongues.

* scary music *
posted by pracowity at 3:14 AM on December 16, 2008


Virtually everyone here is missing the true meaning of this event. So consider what would have happened to that reporter if he had tried to do the same thing at a government press conference in Baghdad 8 years ago.

The brother of the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at US President George W Bush has said that the reporter has been beaten in custody.

Muntadar al-Zaidi has suffered a broken hand, broken ribs and internal bleeding, as well as an eye injury, his older brother, Dargham, told the BBC.

posted by EarBucket at 6:49 AM on December 16, 2008


8 years ago this guy would be dead. See, already there is improvement.
Somehow after reading about this guy for the past few days, I get the sense that this was a pretty self serving act. I wonder if he is wishing he had done things differently now.

the previously little-known journalist
Not so unknown now is he?
Next step: PROFIT!
posted by a3matrix at 7:23 AM on December 16, 2008


Iraqi TV is reporting that he's been transferred to US custody at Camp Cropper.
posted by EarBucket at 7:52 AM on December 16, 2008


Muntadar al-Zaidi has suffered a broken hand, broken ribs and internal bleeding, as well as an eye injury, his older brother, Dargham, told the BBC.

Also: "TV al-Sharqiya in Iraq reported that the al-Zaidi had 'signs of torture on his thighs.'"

Plus ça change...
posted by ericb at 8:03 AM on December 16, 2008


“My god, that is just the limit. That is literally sickening.”

That, is the secret service failure right there. This other stuff - hell, they’ve said it themselves, no one can stop a determined assassin who’s willing to die. As it is, I think it was a good move not to shoot him.
I’d like to question him. Get an idea of where he’s coming from.

But no. Beaten in custody. God damn disgusting.
Not only is that completely unprofessional, not only is that a gross violation of his rights (violence in apprehension might be necessary, violence once a subject is under your control is inexcusable), but it martyrs him you f’ing dolts.
Could we send a clearer message that “hey we’re the bad guys!”?
Can we castrate him next without a trial maybe?

Every time I think I’m not an ‘A’ level mofo who knows better than almost everyone else I see this half-assed b.s. and I realize - damn, they really don’t have a clue. They really are monkeys in suits. Bush really is just some shit-kicker from Texas who is dumb as a bag of hammers.
(And that’s not ego, I’d rather see anyone from about 95% of metafilter in charge than this guy)

Y’know, I half believe the secret service were dragging their feet anyway, I think Bush has this whole machismo thing going on (you can always tell the guys who are tough ass because they’ve never actually been shot at), but beyond all that - it’s like they (Bushco) *want* to stir up trouble.
Like, yeah, let ‘em take a shot at me, throw shoes, whatever. Let’s agitate the fuck out of people before we leave office, maybe give us an excuse to drop a nuke or something.

And I don’t buy this “Cheney in charge” crap. Reagan had the same ‘bad-ass’ rep - like the Iranians were so ascared of him they let the hostages go. Uh huh. We all know him and Bush the greater cut a backdoor deal.
This ‘Cheney’s bad ‘cos he’s crazy’ doesn’t fly. Hell, Pee wee Herman backed by the U.S. military is a hard mother.

If I’m a fanatic, that’s exactly the approach I want - reckless abandon on the part of my enemy.
I want Cheney overreacting, killing innocent people - hell that’s been the last 8 years anyway. Bush did more for OBL than he’d have accomplished on his own.
A methodical, measured approach from the moral high ground, treating prisoners with due legal consideration would have driven the whole organization into the footnotes of history by now.

As it is, you get three teenagers in some jerkwater villiage somewhere call themselves “al-qaeda” and they get the attention of the world on them.
Great, thanks George. Want to torture them too? Maybe set even more people against us and adopting the name of what’s come to symbolize opposition to you?
posted by Smedleyman at 9:00 AM on December 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Muntadar al-Zaidi has suffered a broken hand, broken ribs and internal bleeding, as well as an eye injury, his older brother, Dargham, told the BBC.

Also: "TV al-Sharqiya in Iraq reported that the al-Zaidi had 'signs of torture on his thighs.'"


but ... but ... but ... he's got FREEDOM!!! - classgoat says so!

---

Iraqi TV is reporting that he's been transferred to US custody at Camp Cropper.

that's probably because someone in the u s realized that the iraqis are going to kill his ass if they're allowed to keep him - you know, like saddam used to do to his prisoners

things haven't changed at all
posted by pyramid termite at 9:08 AM on December 16, 2008


that's probably because someone in the u s realized that the iraqis are going to kill his ass if they're allowed to keep him -

Yes, that is called 'extraordinary rendition' eh?

The US knew what they were doing when they turned him over to the Iraqis.

After all, a new revenge "attack on our freedom" from some angry group would make Bush's legacy complete -- and allow the defense industry profiteers to continue their never-ending war(s).

One man stood up; we ALL should have demanded a stand down.
posted by Surfurrus at 9:30 AM on December 16, 2008


Duck, Duck, Bush!
posted by ericb at 10:20 AM on December 16, 2008


Late-Night's Shoe-Throwing Joke Bonanza (Conan, Leno, Letterman and Ferguson) -- video.
posted by ericb at 10:27 AM on December 16, 2008


After he threw the shoes, Mr. Zaidi was subdued by a fellow journalist and then beaten by members of the prime minister’s security detail, who hauled him out of the room in his white socks. Mr. Zaidi’s cries could be heard from a nearby room as the news conference continued.

That last part should be audible on the news conf video shouldn't it? Any body able to confirm?

I wonder if he was screaming "Don't tase me bro!"

If this guy thought he was going to throw his shoes at the POTUS and Iraq's PM and not get his ass kicked, then he is an imbecile.
posted by a3matrix at 10:59 AM on December 16, 2008


I wonder if he was screaming "Don't tase me bro!"

I'm guessing this was supposed to be funny or something.

If this guy thought he was going to throw his shoes at the POTUS and Iraq's PM and not get his ass kicked, then he is an imbecile.

He could expect to tackled and wrestled to the ground. He could expect to be arrested and charged. He can probably expect a conviction. But beating a man in police custody is over the line. At least, you know, in supposed democracies the world over, anyway.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 11:10 AM on December 16, 2008


My point is, he knows the country he was in. He knows how they deal with things like this. He had to know it was not going to go well. Pretend democracy or not. He is lucky they didn't cut his feet off. There was a point in that whole thought process when he should have asked himself if this really is/was a good idea.
I still think he did it for more self serving reasons. Trying to make a name for himself.

He could expect to tackled and wrestled to the ground. He could expect to be arrested and charged. He can probably expect a conviction. But beating a man in police custody is over the line. At least, you know, in supposed democracies the world over, anyway.

We can't even expect that here in the US sad to say. The don't tase me comment was supposed to be more of a contrasting statement, to show that almost the same happens here in the US. But if it is funny than so be it.
posted by a3matrix at 12:29 PM on December 16, 2008


There was a point in that whole thought process when he should have asked himself if this really is/was a good idea.

There is a difference between expecting to get the shit kicked out of you and something being a bad idea. I'm sure he fully knew what could happen if he did this, but he decided that the consequences of demonstrating the hatred felt for Bush was more important. His (mis)treatment is also further exposing the sham of "Iraqi Freedom"

So he got tortured. So he got some physical injuries. The results of his actions may have been well worth the effort.
posted by Pollomacho at 12:38 PM on December 16, 2008


The results of his actions may have been well worth the effort.

Well only time will tell that tale. Hopefully no part of the beat down leaves him crippled or disfigured.
I give him this, it takes balls of steel to do what he did, whatever the reason. His heart must have been racing. His aim was spot on, too bad GW is a crafty one and is still quick on the reflex. A learned trait? hehehehe
I am still a bit leery of his true intentions. Providing he survives the ensuing events, he is a celebrity and will probably write a book or something. Its almost like he watched Jerry Springers show or something like it.
posted by a3matrix at 12:57 PM on December 16, 2008


Cheney Confesses To A War Crime
posted by homunculus at 1:01 PM on December 16, 2008


Schuhedenfreude: unseemly pleasure taken from observing shoes thrown at the president.
posted by Soliloquy at 2:00 PM on December 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


I am still a bit leery of his true intentions ... Its almost like he watched Jerry Springers show or something like it.

Or maybe you have watched too much.

There are people in this world who still take bold actions against power -- even knowing the consequences.



... ever wonder why americans don't understand 'the terrorist mind' ?
posted by Surfurrus at 2:18 PM on December 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Very fun new flash game, using the shoe throwing at bush theme. Bush Boot Camp (ha!).
posted by nickyskye at 2:38 PM on December 16, 2008


Also: Sock and Awe
posted by pompomtom at 3:36 PM on December 16, 2008


bold actions

You're kidding right?
posted by a3matrix at 4:13 PM on December 16, 2008


“The results of his actions may have been well worth the effort.”

Or, indeed, the point of the effort.

“to show that almost the same happens here in the US.”

Not as a matter of established policy. Even so, it’s inexcusable when it happens here as well.
It should never happen. For a wide variety of reasons ranging from pure idealism to hard headed practical reality.

Y’know, it’s funny how authority works. When I walk into a room, I typically am the ‘guy in charge.’ This is not a function of stature, size, bearing, rank, etc.
This beating, were I in that room, would not have taken place.
Or, were I to have entered the back room, it would have stopped.
If I had to actually do something physical to enforce my will I would have done so the the utmost of my ability.

My career? International incident? Pfft.
I would have made sure it stopped whether it meant the end of my, or someone else’s life.
If I couldn’t push it that far there and then (they neutralized me) I’d follow it up later. But at least I’d try.

We all know it’s wrong. And not for “oh don’t hurt the poor suspect” wimpy reasons either.
We know right from wrong. They’re wrong. And I would have stopped them, or tried to, because it is right. Period.
They are not going to beat a man they have under control and in custody anywhere near me. And if I couldn’t stop it, I’d find a way to make them accountable and I’d make it stick.

Now, as it so happens, I’m not the President of the United States. Nor am I the lead on his security detail. Nor am I on his security detail. Nor am I connected with any of his....you see where this is going...

So, ok. I’m just me. No lightweight, to be sure, but still, not in that rarified air.

Place Obama in your mind. Think he’d stand for that happening? Think members of his security detail might have acted differently?
Again, he’s a smaller guy (physically) than me.
He fills pretty much any room he’s in. He filled Grant Park. He’s not the type of guy to not get his way.

Authority’s a funny thing. No matter what the source, the state, religion, popular vote, whatever -
Some people derive authority from moral principle.
Some people derive it from feigning helplessness or making pretense towards necessity.

Just something to think about next time you see someone endowed with delegated authority.

Pretty easy thing to see from just a few minutes observation too.
(Sometimes, in some folks they’re mixed, depending on the subject or situation at hand)

All that to say - I don’t know what speaks worse of George Bush, that he wanted the beating to happen, or he didn’t want it to happen but it happened anyway or he didn’t know about it.

Coming right down to it, I’m just a guy on Metafilter.
He’s the President of the United States.
posted by Smedleyman at 5:03 PM on December 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Shoe-hurler sparks chaos in Iraq's parliament -- "Speaker quits amid debate over whether 'beaten' journalist should be freed."
posted by ericb at 8:17 AM on December 17, 2008


From ericb's link:
Al-Zeidi's family went to the Central Criminal Court expecting to attend a court hearing for him, said his brother, Dhargham. He added they were told the investigative judge went to see him in jail and that they should return in eight days.

"That means my brother was severely beaten and they fear that his appearance could trigger anger at the court," he added.
Disgusting. Heck of a job, Bushie!
posted by grouse at 8:25 AM on December 17, 2008


Whatever happened to Tianamen Square guy?
posted by Artw at 12:33 PM on December 17, 2008


Al-Zaidi, Injured, Pleads Guilty
posted by homunculus at 12:45 PM on December 17, 2008




I thought that I could just ignore this, and let it go, but I have to quote it: because this must be the single most delusional post I've ever read on Metafilter. Seriously, if this is any reflection of what the right is hanging on to in some kind of attempt to rationalize the war, then they're even more out of touch with reality than I ever thought.

Virtually everyone here is missing the true meaning of this event. So consider what would have happened to that reporter if he had tried to do the same thing at a government press conference in Baghdad 8 years ago.

He wouldn't have dared to do it, because he would have known that if he had, he'd have disappeared in the night, and his tortured corpse would have been found later, or not at all. His reward for throwing his shoe at a government spokesman in the year 2000 would have been a slow and painful death, and an unmarked grave.

In 2008, however, he felt no such concern. He was able to express his hatred of the government of Iraq and the President of the United States secure in the knowledge that he would live to see another day. He won't be killed for what he did. There's a good chance he won't even be detained for long.

That freedom to detest our leaders and to publicly express that hatred is one of our most cherished rights here in this country. And now, because of George Bush, the people of Iraq share in that freedom.

George Bush has every reason to be proud of what happened today, because of what it really means about just how much Iraq has changed for the better.

posted by jokeefe at 1:00 PM on December 18, 2008 [2 favorites]


Rove & Friends Laugh Off Shoe-Bomb.
posted by ericb at 2:32 PM on December 18, 2008






Weaponized footwear.
posted by Tube at 10:07 AM on December 20, 2008


Clearly for idea presidential shoeing some kind of cluster-shoe weapon needs to be developed, possibly full of robeez.
posted by Artw at 12:29 PM on December 20, 2008




Ghoul's Glossary: Shoewhack

Shoewhack (v.) To assault someone with footwear in such a way as to humiliate that individual, especially at a moment of supposed triumph or obvious hypocrisy. A shoewhacking generally involves an element of surprise. It is especially appropriate for individuals guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors who have for reasons of wealth and power nevertheless escaped any other punishment for their iniquity.
posted by homunculus at 12:46 PM on December 20, 2008




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