Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Top 10 List of Memorable Quotes You Will Soon Forget

The folks over there at the Yale Book of Quotations have compiled a list of the Top 10 Quotes of 2008. In other news, there is a Yale Book of Quotations. And the number one quote was something that wasn't said by the person who was supposed to have said it and the person who did say it isn't really that person. Did you catch all that? If not, don't worry, it will all make sense by the end of this post. (And if it doesn't make sense by then, I don't know what to tell you. I didn't say it was a magic post.)

Now, although it's a "Top Ten" list, there are three quotes that tied for tenth. I am not a fan of the tie; neck or things that are the same. I find it odd that it was the last spot on the list that they had trouble narrowing down the final candidates for. They just couldn't bear to leave at least two of those three off of the list. Let's see if they did the right thing (I'm guessing they did not).
  • Number 10: "Anyone who says we're in a recession, or heading into one, especially the worst one since the Great Depression, is making up his own private definition of 'recession.' Those words of incorrect wisdom from commentator Donald Luskin on September 14. Oh, and that was the day right before Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy. You know, because of the recession that we're not having.

  • Number 10 - AGAIN: "Cash for trash." That came from Paul Krugman on the topic of the bailout of the financial companies on Sept. 22.

  • Number 10 - YET AGAIN: "There are no atheists in foxholes and there are no libertarians in financial crises." That's Paul Krugman again. (Did he compile this list? They had to have two quotes by the same guy tie for Number Ten??) He was being interviewed by Bill Maher for HBO's "Real Time" which was aired on Sept. 19

OK, nothing personal Yale Book of Quotations That We Never Knew Existed Guys, but those kind of sucked. I know they were Number Ten and all, but they weren't great. They were far from memorable. I mean, all I'm going to remember is that they kind of sucked and somehow I don't think that's what you had in mind.

  • Number 9: "Barack, he's talking down to black people. ... I want to cut his nuts off." That was July 6 when Rev. Jesse Jackson learned that he should always make sure his mike isn't live before he starts making comments that he think won't be heard on the air at Fox News.

Now we're talking! That was memorable! Next!

  • Number 8: "I'll see you at the debates, bitches." How hot was Paris Hilton when she made that video in response to one of John McCain's TV ads for his campaign. Probably pretty hot, but only because it was in August.

  • Number 7: "Maybe 100." That was John McCain on Jan. 3. Would you like to take a guess as to what he was referring to? No, not his age. He was speculating at the number of years that US troops could continue to remain in Iraq. (Ouch!)

  • Number 6: "Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency." Allow me to translate that: When the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act was proposed by the Treasury Department in Sept. 2008, what they were saying was one guy will be in charge of the $700 billion and he can do with it whatever he wants and no one can say any different, including the Federal Government or the Supreme Court. (Be prepared to see that quote in the list of Top Ten Most Frightening Quotes of 2008 when it comes out.)

  • Number 5: "The fundamentals of America's economy are strong." What would have been even more memorable after John McCain said that during an interview with folks at Bloomberg TV on April 17 would have been if he had explained himself instead of letting people think he was a moron for saying that. What he was saying was and is correct. America's economy has a solid foundation. That doesn't mean it won't falter. But the fundamentals of what builds our economy are strong. You just don't say things like that when every other house in the country is being foreclosed on. And you don't do that because why? Because you'll look like an idiot, that is correct.

  • Number 4: "It's not based on any particular data point, we just wanted to choose a really large number." Why, yes! I did mock that particular quote in an earlier post! Anything that ridiculous deserves to be mocked (and by people who are a lot better at it than I am). That little gem was brought to us by Forbes.com on Sept. 23. Now if Forbes.com would only do a follow up article explaining what else they do over at the Treasury Department that seems to involve little more than throwing a bunch of darts at a board with big numbers on it. (I hear they take shots at a pinata when they're trying to figure out what to do with the prime interest rate.)
  • Number 3: "We have sort of become a nation of whiners." That was one of John McCain's former economic advisers, former Sen. Phil Gramm as quoted on July 10 in The Washington Times. (Number 3 Most Memorable Follow Up Question: "SORT OF?!?!?")
  • Number 2: "All of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years." OK, that one was pretty good! A one Governor Sarah Palin was describing what newspapers and magazines she reads after she was asked the question by Katie Couric during an interview in which Gov. Palin seemed barely able to utter a coherent sentence, as evidenced by the quote above. The cringe-worthy interview was aired on Oct. 1.

  • And finally, the Number One Memorable Quote for 2008 is: "And I can see Russia from my house!" Ah...the brilliance of comedy imitating life. That was a very funny one Tina Fey during the first Saturday Night Live skit where she played Gov. Sarah Palin opposite a very funny one Amy Poehler in the role of Sen. Hillary Clinton. Fey/Palin was responding to the Poehler/Clinton statement, "I believe that diplomacy should be the cornerstone of any foreign policy." That instant classic aired on NBC on Sept. 13, but you can view it below. The Number One Memorable Quote for 2008 appears right around 1:25 into the classic bit.

And those are the Top Ten Memorable Quotes for 2008. "Can you believe it, Hillary?"

"I can-not!"

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