‘I can see Russia from my house!’ tops Yale list of top quotations from 2008

DocJess of DemConWatch passes on the “Most Notable Quotations of 2008,” as selected by Yale Book of Quotations editor Fred Shapiro:

1. “I can see Russia from my house!” — Comedian Tina Fey, while impersonating Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on “Saturday Night Live,” broadcast Sept. 13

2. “All of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years.” — Palin, responding to a request by CBS anchor Katie Couric to name the newspapers or magazines she reads, broadcast Oct. 1

3. “We have sort of become a nation of whiners.” — former Sen. Phil Gramm, an economic adviser to Sen. John McCain, quoted in The Washington Times, July 10

4. “It’s not based on any particular data point, we just wanted to choose a really large number.” — a Treasury Department spokeswoman explaining how the $700 billion number was chosen for the initial bailout, quoted on Forbes.com Sept. 23

5. “The fundamentals of America’s economy are strong.” — McCain, in an interview with Peter Cook on Bloomberg TV, April 17, 2008.

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.” — the Treasury Department’s proposed Emergency Economic Stabilization Act, September 2008.

7. “Maybe 100.” — John McCain on how many years U.S. troops could remain in Iraq, response at town hall meeting, Derry, N.H., Jan. 3, 2008.

8. “I’ll see you at the debates, bitches.” — Paris Hilton, video responding to John McCain ad attacking Barack Obama as a celebrity, August 2008.

9. “At a time of great crisis with mortgage foreclosures and autos, he [Barack Obama] says we only have one president at a time. I’m afraid that overstates the number of presidents we have.” — Barney Frank, remark to consumer advocates, Dec. 4, 2008

10. (tie) “Cash for trash.” — Paul Krugman discussing the financial bailout, New York Times, Sept. 22.

10. (tie) “There are no atheists in foxholes and there are no libertarians in financial crises.” — Krugman, in an interview with Bill Maher on HBO’s “Real Time,” broadcast Sept. 19.

DocJess adds two of his own favorites:

• “Barack, he’s talking down to black people. … I want to cut his nuts off.” — Rev. Jesse Jackson, overheard over a live microphone before a Fox News interview, July 6, 2008.

• “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.” — commentator Donald Luskin, the day before Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, The Washington Post, Sept. 14, 2008.

Got any favorites? Add them and discuss in the comments below.

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Ernest Luning

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