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Bloggingheads
02-18-2008, 08:37 PM

JLF
02-18-2008, 09:46 PM
Poor Byron. The very idea that Obama might use the same campaign tactics that Crawford's Village Idiot used successfully! How dare any Democrat think he can run the country with just a single vote majority! And the very idea that Democrats aren't all flaming liberals. Imagine!

Poor Byron. If the public doesn't want a Commander in Chief on election day, there won't be any need to go vote at all.

somerandomdude
02-18-2008, 10:13 PM
Great! Love these two guys.

Christopher M
02-18-2008, 10:46 PM
York takes the prize for worst circumlocution ever on BhTV, when he reaches out for the word "presence" but, not quite finding it, refers instead to "the non-go-away status (http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/8848?in=00:35:40&out=35:51)."

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 01:40 AM
(Disclaimer: I haven't finished watching this diavlog yet, but I had to fire this one off.)

There really is only one way to really respond to this sort of nonsense (http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/8848?in=00:18:26&out=00:18:47) [truncated out of mercy for link-followers]. Mr. York: stfu.

You can drone on about "lack of substance" all you want, and I have only two things to say to you: (1) read Obama's site on the issues (http://www.barackobama.com/issues/), and (2), don't embarrass yourself by criticizing Obama for speaking in grand themes when your kind has been wallowing in necrophilia with the corpse of Saint Ronnie Teh Great Communicator for the past twenty years.

I'll add that it's patently transparent of you to attribute these "worries" to "some liberal supporters." It's clear that you're doing nothing but test-driving a trial balloon for the general election.

All in all, it was good to hear from these two old pros, but when Byron slips into his mindless partisanship mode and Mark chuckles indulgently and mostly allows him to mouth such platitudes*, I say, out with the old guard and in with the new blood.

Oh, and BTW, both of you? Treating Joke Line as some kind of authoritative source is a serious indicator that you need to leave the echo chamber once in a while.

I have been advising friends who get anti-Obama email forwarded to them to respond thus: Obama is The Messiah. Therefore, he can do no wrong. If you think you can't understand something about him, remember that he works in mysterious ways, his wonders to perform.

Do I really believe that? Of course not. But it does seem to cut down on the spam, one, and two, for the first time in my voting life, I have encountered a candidate who actually makes me believe. Clinton and McCain are known quantities: aging hacks who, at best, could win a close election and who will not be significantly different from The Current Occupant on any issue that I care about. Obama might not live up to what I hope he can accomplish, but at this point, he's the only one who offers possibilities.

=======
* [Added: Upon another listen, I now think Mark's response was more robust than I first heard. My apologies on this point.]

[Added later: Byron was lame on trying to defend McCain's equivalent lack of substantive policy, right at the end, after his earlier riff on Obama. Good on Mark for calling him on this.]

Wonderment
02-19-2008, 02:39 AM
...and who will not be significantly different from The Current Occupant on any issue that I care about.

Whatever else you may say about HRC, Brendan, she would never have given the country Alito and Roberts.

Sgt Schultz
02-19-2008, 02:40 AM
re Necrophilia - Reagan has not be dead for twenty years.
Dead Kennedy's anyone?

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 02:41 AM
Whatever else you may say about HRC, Brendan, she would never have given the country Alito and Roberts.

Good call. I confess to a bit of hyperbole.

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 02:44 AM
re Necrophilia - Reagan has not be dead for twenty years.
Dead Kennedy's anyone?

Reagan has been brain-dead since 1988, at least.

You have a little bit of a point about JFK and RFK. On the other hand, it really is the case that these names are invoked mostly as symbols of possibility, and not as deities.

deebee
02-19-2008, 08:17 AM
My sense is that Obama’s act will eventually wear thin and that he will become a self-parody – the only question is, will it happen before or after the Primaries? His recent missteps involving misogynistic comments, plagiarism and his wife’s apparent Teresa Heinz problem further contribute towards this danger – then there’s the upcoming Rezko trial, which represents a major unknown.

I personally find his rhetoric increasingly off-putting in its sanctimony and crass manipulation. I also do not see the JFK analogy since he was affable, debonair and witty in a self-effacing way. His ability to inspire was very low-key except for the occasional speech that sometimes included a memorable turn of phrase. Bobby was more fiery and intense but generally spoke to the specific needs of the common man, unlike Obama who goes out of his way to “uplift” and “inspire” in a very generic way.

In the end, this may turn out to be another case of the Tortoise and the Hare.

TwinSwords
02-19-2008, 09:20 AM
There really is only one way to really respond to this sort of nonsense (http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/8848?in=00:18:26&out=00:18:47) [truncated out of mercy for link-followers]. Mr. York: stfu. [...] I'll add that it's patently transparent of you to attribute these "worries" to "some liberal supporters." It's clear that you're doing nothing but test-driving a trial balloon for the general election.

Right on, Brendan. From now until election day we'll be subjected to more and more of these dishonest characterizations. Old man Byron was clearly trying to pump life into what he hopes is a growing meme (the frightening, cult-like quality of the Obama campaign) and he barely keeps a straight face while doing so.

He did something similar earlier in the diavlog when, with great concern, he asked Mark about the fact that black people now hate the Clintons (http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/8848?in=00:11:06&out=00:12:04), a fact he claims to have surmised from his poll of a single black individual.

Of course, only the credulous would believe that Byron actually heard this from a black person. Conservatives have been eagerly pimping this meme for over a month, so Byron's suggestion that he just picked this up from a black guy is transparently dishonest. Byron needed an excuse to inject the meme into the discussion, and inventing a random black-man-in-the-street gives the meme a semblance of authenticity while allowing Byron to maintain his facade of detached inquiry.

Subtly and deliberately injecting right-wing memes into the debate under the guise of serious inquiry is a Republican art form, and another area where Democrats cannot compete.

TwinSwords
02-19-2008, 09:33 AM
His recent missteps involving misogynistic comments,
It has been something to see Republicans suddenly discover the scourge of racism mysoginy. Anyone who has lived in the United States for more than about 4 weeks knows that the default Republican position is to dismiss these phenomena as liberal bed wetting and political correctness.



his wife’s apparent Teresa Heinz problem
This appears to be the latest invention of the right-wing public relations effort to find stuff to throw at Obama. I've heard the Michelle Obama = Theresa Heinz Kerry meme four times in the last 48 hours.

I think Kevin Drum is correct that a major anti-Obama media shitstorm is just around the corner (http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2008_02/013151.php). I fear it will make the media frenzy surrounding Howard Dean's scream seem thoughtfully analytical by comparison.

deebee
02-19-2008, 10:18 AM
Sorry guys but I am a life-long Democrat who has always been uncomfortable with mass hysteria. I really wanted Al Gore to run because of his stature, experience, brilliant assessments regarding the Iraq War, Environment, Cynicism and a wide range of other issues. I also believe that he would have had a calming effect on a battle-weary nation. Obama just doesn't fill that bill for me so I'm going with Hillary who has shown a real grasp of the issues and an excellent work ethic.

If he gets in, Obama may prove to be just a hunky-dory stand-up President, but I just don't feel like taking that chance given the horrible situations that Mr. Bush will leave for us. I think Barack Obama is a very bright and appealing guy who would make a fine Vice President because it would allow him to get his feet wet and understand what its all about before going solo. I just don't want to witness a real-life reenactment of that charismatic Robert Redford's "Candidate" movie role who wins the Presidency, then walks into the Oval Office asking himself, "What now?"

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 10:43 AM
Chances are that Barrack Obama would do just fine.

The problem is whether he would get elected.

I am not confident that the voters who will not vote for a black candidate are going to by the Mystery Factor in elections where Obama runs.

This is not justify, or condemn. But simply to say that there is "x" amount of the population who will not vote for a black. Even if he is a great candidate, they feel that voting for a black ALSO means voting for a lot of other racial positions that they simply disagree with.

So despite these polls that paint a flowery picture of an Obama candidacy, I would just like some more people to consider that if it is 47% vs. 45% against McCain, it means that Obama ONLY gets 47% of the vote (McCain ends up with 53% and wins.)

When Hillary Clinton is 45% to McCain's 47%, it means she may have an equal chance at the 8% who are not decided. (So it could be as much as Hillary 52% or 53%, but more likely something close to the razor's edge 50%.)

People who will not vote for a black will say they are "undecided", unless they are firmly for McCain.

Plus, many anti-Obama Democrats may be perfectly happy with McCain it it's Obama vs. McCain.

If the wine and brie side of the Democrats gets their way once again, and loses a "sure thing" like 2008, they should realize that they are through as a credible voice in pretty much anything.

The stakes are high. So think.

Bloggin' Noggin
02-19-2008, 10:59 AM
What misogynistic comments? What do you mean "Teresa Heinz Kerry problem"? Guess I missed, not only what horrible thing Michelle Obama did, but the horrible thing THK did to begin with.
The plagiarism charge worried me slightly until I saw just how lame it really is. Basically he borrowed an argument and a rhetorical trope from one of his supporters. Patrick said they discuss speech ideas -- who's to say it was even Patrick's idea first? Was it plagiarism when Bush officials borrowed from each other that line about the smoking gun turning into a mushroom cloud? Might as well say that President Bush plagiarized his speech writers when he read speeches they had written for him.

In addition, the standard of plagiarism for political speeches has got to be pretty high -- like the charge of plagiarism for jokes.
"Nothing to fear but fear itself" I understand is a slight reworking of a line that had been used and reworked a number of times before FDR used it. Was FDR guilty of plagiarism?

I see Obama's argument as pretty contentful, actually. He's saying: Look, a majority is in favor of liberal policies, so long as those liberal policies don't micromanage the economy or people's lives, and so long as reasonable conservative objections are taken account of -- so long as the policies are designed intelligently to avoid too many unintended bad consequences. We can get a lot of good policies enacted if we don't allow the Republicans to play conservative-identity politics. More people in this country like to see themselves as conservatives and like to see liberals as "limousine liberals" and all that crap. The Republicans have defeated a lot of popular policies by playing on people's identities as "conservatives". Obama is attempting to disarm that Republican weapon, while still taking their objections into account in avoiding some of the pitfalls of design that liberal policies have fallen into in the past.
This isn't just mindless uplift. I think he's calling on people to focus on the substance of politics (policies) and trying to get people excited about that.

The claim that he has no specific policies or that he'll be asking "what do we do now" is based, not on the facts (see his website), but on media narrative: if Obama is eloquent and Clinton is boring, then Obama MUST have less substance than Clinton (or the press narrative wouldn't be as exciting and reporters couldn't claim "balance".

deebee
02-19-2008, 11:20 AM
Interesting statistical polling assessment from Hoofin. Also want to add that I just don't trust all of those Republicans who claim that they are just drooling at the prospect of running against Hillary and have absolutely no clue as to how to approach Obama (pollster Frank Luntz included). Sorry about another hokey reference but it just reminds me too much of Brer Rabbit's lament "Pleeeease don't throw me in that Briar Patch," when all along that is exactly what he desired.

Regarding the misogynistic comments that Bloggin Noggin questions -- how does a reference to Hillary's claws coming out when she is frustrated or how she periodically gets down strike you? Thems fightin' words for women -- they just don't sit well. One can't imagine him using those phrases against Edwards, now can you.....

Also Noggins' puzzlement at the Plagiarism baffles me since the lifted riff was so much more than the short stock sloganeering usually associated with campaigning. He was obviously quoting great men (not a problem). It was what he took verbatim from Deval Patrick's speech (with or without his permission) in a statement that went on and on. Just doesn't look good for a guy whose campaign prides itself on the importance of words. Probably not a major problem for him right now but it begins to makes him look just a bit phony and could escalate if combined with other things.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 11:25 AM
Subtly and deliberately injecting right-wing memes into the debate under the guise of serious inquiry is a Republican art form, and another area where Democrats cannot compete.


As someone who would like to vote for the Democrat this time around, this other one is the meme that bothers me the most:

That for the most part, as a so-called black (even though his mother was white), Barack Obama has pretty much had the door opened for him in life, for just about everything.

As a smart kid who fit the diversity profile, his application to college, law school, life in general has been one that has been SMILED UPON all the way up. In a way that say, the White Male Christian born in the 1950's or '60's (or later) did NOT get.

And the problem about this meme, is that everyone knows it's true. And The Republicans especially know it. They know it applies to the wife even more.

And when these "suggestions" start making their way into the campaign, the Obamians are not going to be able to shut it down. The people around McCain are going to point out that Obama is a man who had it handed to him for being "black", time and again.

This is going to hit the 5-10% (or more) of the public for whom these reverse discrimination injuries have been particularly acute. And when they go to that booth, it's payback time.

I could easily see states like Pennsylvania and/or Ohio being flipped just on this fact.

It gets worse, when the insinuation will be present (and it will) that an Obama Administration will just make these special preferences EVEN WORSE.

I think the Republicans are momentarily holding back, because they want the weaker candidate. They sense it like the sharks they are. And they know to keep that swimming circle as far out of range right now as they can.

But when Mrs. Clinton is finally out of the way, all this is going to come surging forward.

EchoesOhio
02-19-2008, 11:26 AM
As an Ohio voter and fairly active Democrat preparing for March 4, I can say that Byron's point about Obama's oft repeated message of Hope is a bit played out here. For the record, I'm undecided. A first for me. But most folks I talk to here say the same. I crave the details because that's where the differences lie. But lately, all I hear is Hope, Change, Powered by Hope, Real Change - and it's empty rhetoric after having been repeated incessantly. Yes, he has policies. Policies I agree with. But if he doesn't start to articulate them regularly and start sounding like he has a plan besides 'can't we all just get along?', he's going to alienate a good portion of people who really would like to support him. His commercials have just started running in Central Ohio this week. Maybe he offers a bit more there. But if I see him hold up one baby, just one, and say the word 'Hope' again, I might just have to vote for McCain.

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 11:32 AM
EchoesOhio:

I crave the details because that's where the differences lie.

Have you ever read the issues section of his web site (http://www.barackobama.com/issues/)?

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 11:35 AM
Hoofin said:

... the 5-10% (or more) of the public for whom these reverse discrimination injuries have been particularly acute.

Another proof of my favorite Law: 87.62% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 11:39 AM
I share BN's confusion: What is this "Michelle Obama = Teresa Heinz Kerry" thing all about, and what did THK ever do in the first place?

I'd say people on the right in this country are becoming more than a little unhinged, but that'd be redundant.

piscivorous
02-19-2008, 11:45 AM
I have reproduced in full a comment from Redstate (http://www.crosstabs.org) (horror of horrors) "The Tax Subsidy May be worth it (http://www.redstate.com/blogs/rick_moran/2008/feb/16/mccain_proving_himself_a_canny_campaigner#comment-686513)" that is a pretty good look at Senator Obama's funding options

The tax subsidy for the general election, if the candidates take it, is about $85 million. It is a MUCH better deal for the general election than for the primary. That's why even Bush took the general election subsidy.

Think about it - $85 million, to spend between the end of the GOP convention on September 4 and the election on November 4. That's a healthy $1.42 million per day. By comparison, through the end of 2007, Obama had been campaigning for over a year and spent about $85 million.

Additionally, because the subsidy comes with no strings attached, there are no fundraising costs. Typically, fundraising costs can eat up about 20% or more of the funds raised. In other words, to get $85 million to spend, you would have to raise more like $100 million. Obama's total amount raised in all of 2007 was just over $100 million. At this point, he is raising about $1 million a day, but is probably spending about that much, too. Let's suppose he wraps up the nomination after March 4 (a dubious proposition), he will still need to spend probably $300K a day through the summer. If the Democratic battle extends all the way to the convention, or even June, Obama will likely have to devote all his fundraising to the primary.

Now, you can start raising the general election money now, true, but Obama is still battling Hillary for the nomination, and he'll need to raise other money to stay on the airwaves between the time he might wrap up the nomination and the Democratic Convention ending on August 28.

And it gets tougher. Even subsidized candidates can raise money for a "GELAC" account, "General Election Legal and Accounting." This is privately raised but will typically total about $20 million. McCain can certainly raise that for the general. So McCain would have to match that $20-30 million McCain raises for his GELAC, plus the $100 million for campaign expenditures, just to match a subsidized McCain in the General Election.

In short, it is not at all clear that Obama can raise enough to battle for the Dem nomination AND fund his GELAC account AND raise still more for the general in an amount in excess of $100 million, which would be about what he would need to have parity in the general election with a subsidized McCain.

In the end, I don't think this will matter a whole lot.

Brad Smith
Professor of Law
Capital University Law School
Capital University website (http://www.law.capital.edu/Faculty/Bios/bsmith.asp)
Center for Competitive Politics website (http://www.campaignfreedom.org/)


There is some side discussion here (http://www.crosstabs.org/blogs/rick_moran/2008/feb/18/former_fec_commish_brad_smith_on_obamas_federal_fi nancing_dilemma)

TwinSwords
02-19-2008, 11:56 AM
This is going to hit the 5-10% (or more) of the public for whom these reverse discrimination injuries have been particularly acute. And when they go to that booth, it's payback time.
The 5-10% who have been injured were injured by the demise of a system that allocated all positions to white people, regardless of merit, a system that denied opportunity to blacks, again, regardless of merit. I'm afraid I don't share your viewpoint that ending a system of white supremacy and racial apartheid is an "injury" to white people.

This reminds me of the debates I have with the pro-Confederate Ron Paul supporters who claim the South was "injured" by the loss of their "property," i.e., slaves. Or the same Ron Paul supporters who believe the Civil Rights Act of 1965 was an "injury" to the business owner who can no longer refuse to hire or serve black people.

But you're right: The Republicans have been and will continue to be very effective at stoking white resentment over the loss of their privileged status, and the "injury" of no longer being protected by institutionalized white supremacy.

We had slavery for 250 years on this continent, followed by 100 years of Jim Crow. We're now only half way through the 2nd post-apartheid generation. Racism is our legacy and our heritage. So, there every reason to believe that racist attacks on Barack Obama will still be extremely effective.

piscivorous
02-19-2008, 12:00 PM
...
But you're right: The Republicans have been and will continue to be very effective at stoking white resentment over the loss of their privileged status, and the "injury" of no longer being protected by institutionalized white supremacy.... It seems to me that the it is the Democrats are the ones stoking those fires currently.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 12:02 PM
Hoofin said:



Another proof of my favorite Law: 87.62% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

Ha ha! You sure do know everything.

Well, what I am seriously wondering about is that in a country with a history of what best might be termed racial tensions, no one has come out to say that they object to Obama on race.

At best, you might get some other excuse, primarily the not-experienced-enough one. But again, in a country of racial tensions, how much objection have you heard on race?

Did you think this all suddenly got cured in the last ten years?

If you don't think the figure for whom this issue would matter is 5 or 10% (espcially when you include white voters in the South), then what do you think the number would be? As little as 1/100?

And how come no one seems to be able to quantify it?

Doesn't that bother you?

I'd rather see a Democratic canddiate where you could be fairly sure that the 45% in a general who are opposed feel quite happy to say so. That leaves you 55%.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 12:03 PM
What happens when people ask what makes Michelle Obama so special?

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 12:10 PM
The 5-10% who have been injured were injured by the demise of a system that allocated all positions to white people, regardless of merit, a system that denied opportunity to blacks, again, regardless of merit. I'm afraid I don't share your viewpoint that ending a system of white supremacy and racial apartheid is an "injury" to white people.



This is the common fallacy of the race preference supporters. They seem to believe that it was "whitedom" in general that has suffered under the Diversity Policy.

But in fact, wealthy whites can always create opportunities for their children. Those small groups with a lot of money will come out well no matter what happens. Who got squeezed out were deserving, ambitious young whites who were unfortunate to "look like" the executives allegedly running all the things in America.

I don't know whether you can see the difference. But the people who were victimized by the race preferences were not the people who had been big beneficiaries. It was people who arguably equally deserving of a leg up. But instead had doors shut.

It's not a concern either way to me. I am simply pointing out, that the people who have felt victimized by Screwball Diversity, whether you think it is justified or not, are also going to make their way to the voting booth in November. No one is currently talking about it.

Is it a danger to the Democrats, or no?

EchoesOhio
02-19-2008, 12:10 PM
Yes. And that's my point. He has policies. He just doesn't say in public much what they are. He'd rather just 'hope' we get it.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 12:21 PM
It seems to me that the it is the Democrats are the ones stoking those fires currently.

I don't know how true that is, except that some comments the Clintons made were portrayed to say something different.

No one in the Democrats is out-and-out saying that Obama is the Affirmative Action Candidate, who has had it handed to him all along, and even through the screwball rules of the delegate selection, and the order of the primaries, gets a leg up.

I think it's safe to say, that there are 5-10% of the American public who can believe, that when the "Diverse" application hits the admission desk, it's treated differently. Some "one people". Some "unity".

Bill Clinton, as surrogate for his wife, isn't even talking that way. But you can be assured that that one, as well as others, will be popping up from the Repulbicans.

If they took:

a World War II air force pilot in World War II (McGovern) and made him into a wuss,

effective prosecutors before higher office (Mondale and Dukakis) and made them soft-on-crime,

a guy who had nothing to do with Clinton's shenanigans (Gore) and made him part of the problem, and a know-it-all bore as well,

AND

a guy who is still carrying lead in his body from being shot at in a war (Kerry) and made him into Frenchie-coward, Girly Man Wuss,

what do you think they are going to do to the guy who had it handed all to him because he's "black" (has a black father from Kenya)?

And what is particularly sinister, is that the Wise Ones of the Democrats won't even see it coming.

TwinSwords
02-19-2008, 12:32 PM
Is it a danger to the Democrats, or no?
Of course it is. It's been a danger to the Democrats since they lost the South for taking a principled position against white supremacy. And as you point out, having a black candidate will arouse even more white supremacism than usual. With people like you to articulate the grievances of the privileged, to remind whites that they once enjoyed even greater advantage, and to fuel white resentment by portraying them as victims, it has the potential to be quite ugly.

We enjoyed a few years of Reconstruction following the Civil War, but that system was quickly replaced by terrorist gangs (KKK) and Jim Crow. Likewise, there are millions of Americans who would like to end the Civil Rights regime that has existed in America since the 1960s. Considering our legacy and heritage, recent Supreme Court nominations, the gradual erosion of gains made in the 50's and 60's, the fact that McCain will probably be our next president, and the winning political calculus that pits privileged whites against underprivileged blacks, I think it's only a matter of a few years before Republicans roll back most or all of the gains made by the Civil Rights movement.

Bloggin' Noggin
02-19-2008, 12:41 PM
Also Noggins' puzzlement at the Plagiarism baffles me since the lifted riff was so much more than the short stock sloganeering usually associated with campaigning. He was obviously quoting great men (not a problem). It was what he took verbatim from Deval Patrick's speech (with or without his permission) in a statement that went on and on. Just doesn't look good for a guy whose campaign prides itself on the importance of words. Probably not a major problem for him right now but it begins to makes him look just a bit phony and could escalate if combined with other things.

In the Youtube excerpt, it does NOT go on and on. But that's really beside the point. Political speeches --especially campaign speeches -- are not like journal articles -- they consist often of cliches that have been "plagiarized" from generations of earlier politicians. The point Obama wanted to make was best made in just that way -- if Patrick hadn't said it already, it's easy to see how Obama could have come up with "just words" (the only words actually borrowed from Patrick) and the quite obvious examples himself.
But, since i wrote my first post, I have come across James Fallows' much better answer to the plagiarism charge here:
http://jamesfallows.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/02/on_plagiarism.php

I hadn't heard the comments you cite as sexist (I'm probably not as tied into Hillary's email network). I don't really understand the bit about "getting down" from what you say. I'll try to hunt for those comments on Google.

What is the MK= THK thing exactly?

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 12:48 PM
With people like you to articulate the grievances of the privileged, to remind whites that they once enjoyed even greater advantage, and to fuel white resentment by portraying them as victims, it has the potential to be quite ugly.



You are still missing it.

There were whites who were privileged. There were other whites who were not so similarly privileged.

Just because they did not suffer under Jim Crow or slavery (and by the way, no black alive today suffered under slavery), does not mean that there are whites who had no apparent advantage in American society. This is especially true in places where there were very few blacks to begin with, like the North.

TwinSwords, you are saying that there was a privileged white community, and a not privileged black community. (This excludes all the various ethnic groups that arose to prominence since 1965, mostly through immigration.)

But what I am saying is that there was a privileged white group, a white group that arguably was not privileged at all, and then blacks who did not need a leg up, and those that arguably did.

In the group of whites for whom Diversity did nothing but blame them and set them back for something they had nothing to do with, there is no compelling reason to support Obama. Additionally, there are many people (even apparently among the Hispanic community who were no part of the tit-for-tat between black and white over the past 45 years) who won't support Obama.

All I am saying is: here are the arguments against. I didn't create them. I don't espouse them. But frankly, they will be out there and espoused. Only delivered "swift boat" style. It won't be presented in as clear terms.

Just like Willie Horton. The Republicans didn't say, "Hey Dukakis let out this nappy haired scary black guy from the prison and he raped a white woman." They used all the suggestions and images. They didn't say "Kerry is a phony even if he did get shot at unlike Bush who played it safe thanks to his old man." They got the people who haven't liked Kerry for not being hard core on Nam and got them to make the argument. Plus used Hippie Kerry himself from the Dick Cavett show.

It would be a lot more productive for the Democrats to discuss, in whatever way they see fitting (I am an independent), how they are going to reconcile what the Repubs will throw at them. They feel they are already properly assessing Hillary. What about Obama?

Does anyone honestly think that he will continue to get free passes? Or that a number of these other arguments won't be fashioned and then sent out?

If you believe this, you can't be serious.

Bloggin' Noggin
02-19-2008, 12:48 PM
When so many voters -- and so many "journalists" (yes, those are scorn quotes) -- can't stand wonky speeches and scorn the likes of Al Gore for knowing so much and talking so much about policy, Obama's solution of talking in general and inspiring terms about what he'd like to do and leaving the wonks to follow up on the website seems like the best solution.
It seems like Obama's damned if he doesn't get wonky and would be damned if he got wonky.
Even his more general speeches talk about the people he would like to help and the things he'd like to do -- he just doesn't go into that much detail about specific policies.
The differences between HRC and Obama actually don't lie very much in their policies, as far as I'm aware -- the greatest differences lie in their approach to bringing about those policies.

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 12:54 PM
Yes. And that's my point. He has policies. He just doesn't say in public much what they are. He'd rather just 'hope' we get it.

Echoes:

Good on you for reading. I guess I remained in agreement with Mark, though -- Democrats have long tried giving wonk speeches, and it doesn't work. People who listen to speeches overwhelmingly want emotion, not policy. You can't argue with results: Obama has succeeded in ramping up interest and, more importantly, voter turnout.

I imagine if the "lack of substance" meme gets legs, he'll make adjustments, but for the moment, it seems to me that anyone who really wants details can get them, and I am happy that he can motivate all those other potential voters who clearly don't care about such things. You can't govern if you don't win, after all.

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 12:54 PM
What happens when people ask what makes Michelle Obama so special?

I don't understand the question.

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 01:00 PM
Hoofin:

I suppose I agree, somewhat, with your idea that since racism does exist, it'd be better if people were honest about it. On the other hand, sometimes a social agreement not to give voice to reprehensible feelings helps kill the disease. If it's generally agreed upon that expressing racism out loud is a bad thing, it may well keep unformed minds from latching onto the idea that it's okay to be a racist.

As for my worries about the closet racists not voting for Obama: I don't have them. I believe that the overwhelming majority of such people wouldn't vote Democratic in any case, and also, would be just as likely to reject a woman for president, too.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 01:01 PM
It probably has more to do with timing.

In the Gore campaign, he really needed to just emphasize that the good times could just keep going, without getting into unnecessary specifics.

In this campaign, if Obama comes out and says that he is basically a so-called "liberal Democrat", then the conversation quickly moves to what will be the difference and who will be more effective (a point that Mrs. Clinton might actually win!)

So rather than be the black liberal Democrat Barack Obama, he is just Democrat Barack Obama (we know he is black and not sure about what the liberal part but probably is).

This is a much stronger position for him, then to start discussing specifics. Leave those to the website, if you really want to bother.

It's a great strategy, until you get the nomination. Then, you can continue to give great speeches about hope and unity, and the rival will be the man of substance who will take a stand on issues.

By October, everyone is tired of your speeches, which are now seen as "slick" and evasive, and instead they are trusting in the steady hand of the 70-year-old who has the wisdom of the ages, no matter what he has had to say about Iran.

I still think the Democrats are better off with the power-hungry "scheming shrew" with the meddling ex-Prez husband, where most of America (but not 50% majorities!) have already made up their mind, and there are no surprises. To me, the old lady that has been around just about as much as the old man and can match him one-for-one on these points is much more of an offense than someone who will, after seven or eight months, easily and implicitly be made to seem "silly".

To me, that sounds more like reality. But I could just be wrong. We'll see.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 01:10 PM
Hoofin:

As for my worries about the closet racists not voting for Obama: I don't have them. I believe that the overwhelming majority of such people wouldn't vote Democratic in any case, and also, would be just as likely to reject a woman for president, too.

Fair enough, bjkeefe. I agree that people for whom race may be an issue, there are also people (but not maybe the exact same people) who won't vote for any candidate who isn't a man.

But I do think it's fair to air the potential nasty arguments that will revolve around race. You and I both know that they will come, although they won't be explicit, that is for sure.

Harold Ford would have been a lot better off, if at least some people beforehand would have expressly raised the possibility that some would have besmirched his campaign by sending up goofy political ads that played on racial stereotypes. Then, when---surprise---it actually happened, it may just as well have backfired.

But no one should make any mistake. This is what the Republicans will do, once they have their "target of opportunity". It is what they do.

TwinSwords
02-19-2008, 01:11 PM
In the group of whites for whom Diversity did nothing but blame them and set them back for something they had nothing to do with...
Can you describe demographically this group of whites who were "set back" by Civil Rights and the elimination of apartheid?

piscivorous
02-19-2008, 01:43 PM
So what it has been in the press now for 3-4 weeks. I guess that's not stoking the flames just poking around in the ashes I guess.

deebee
02-19-2008, 03:16 PM
To BN & Keefe re: Teresa and Michelle

The thing that they have in common is being uncommon for political wives. Yes that is refreshing in the beginning but because they are not accustomed to the culture of national political attention, they can really step in it. For example, I was initially taken by Teresa Heinz Kerry charm, but as time wore on, she really began to grate on my nerves with her yawns and fidgeting whenever her beloved spoke -- she obviously didn't want to be there and it showed. She also kept on sticking her foot in her mouth but these things were relatively inconsequential and could be brushed off -- but when she finally blurted out that Laura Bush "never held a REAL job", and I heard the beauty shop ladies express their disgust I knew that John Kerry was doomed. (Remember Hillary's "could have stayed home and baked cookies" remarks which haunted her for years?) Of course I don't blame Teresa for the loss, he certainly did his part, but let's just say she didn't help.

Similarly, Michelle Obama is quite outspoken and also "refreshing". For example, she initially made thinly veiled comments about if you can't take care of your own house, you can't take care of the White House. You could claim that it was misinterpreted and that it did not really to refer to the Clintons in a very personal way -- but come on....

Most recently Michelle said something to the effect that for the first time in her adult life she is proud to be an American because of Hope and Coming Together and that kind of stuff. Innocuous enough to most of us except that the right wing were poised to jump on it and lump it into an unpatriotic theme, along with Obama not wearing his flag pin anymore and not putting his hand over his heart during the Pledge of Allegiance. You can see where this is all going. Silly -- yes -- but they will pound at this one mercilessly, believe me. You have to also admit that it does come off as a touch self-reverential which plays along with this Cult of Personality problem.

The Clintons have been there and done that and I think can better handle such attacks. They have been used as a punching bag for so long and we know them so well that people aren't likely to pay as much attention to it when these twisted games are directed at them as they will when they land on the Obamas, who are pretty much blank slates at this point. The Press has really gone easy on The Obamas which isn't really doing them or the Democratic party any favors when it comes to the general election.

Regarding Obama's anti-feminine remarks -- I believe that since I don't generally venture into the depths of the Blogosphere that I read about the comments on Salon and Huffington Post which are not particularly pro-Hillary sites.

bjkeefe
02-19-2008, 03:42 PM
deebee:

Thanks for the detailed answer. All I can say in response is that I am not at all influenced in my choice for president by what the spouse might say in an unguarded moment. (Unless, of course, the spouse in question is a former president, and certain to be a major player in the administration.) The hubbub surrounding non-issues like this says to me nothing more than our election cycles are way too long.

As for worrying about what the right might say: there's nothing to do about that. They're going to latch onto anything that looks like a piece of mud they can sling. If Michelle Obama says nothing from here on out, they'll be screaming, "What do we REALLLY know about her? Why won't she ever share her thoughts?!!!???!!"

deebee
02-19-2008, 03:45 PM
In addition to Obama's lack of eloquence in a debate, have you noticed that when he speaks she often looks directly at him and when Hillary speaks his eyes wander all over?

This type of body language lends itself to making her look strong and he often appears intimidated by her presence.

Probably why she loves a debate and he tends to shy away from them. Don't forget folks, debates will play a major role in the general election and this is where Clinton has a definite edge.

Wonderment
02-19-2008, 04:15 PM
What misogynistic comments? What do you mean "Teresa Heinz Kerry problem"?

Obama made some comment about how HRC "periodically" gets upset and moody. I am paraphrasing, but one critic claimed that women are typically described by sexists as either "being on the rag" or suffering from menopausal "hot flashes."

On the plagiarism thing, it's a one day story. Unfortunately, for Obama, the story came out the day before the primary, putting BO on the defensive and basically costing him a day of soundbites. This was NOT Joe Biden who plagiarized a whole narrative about non-existent coal-mining ancestors.

Guess I missed, not only what horrible thing Michelle Obama did, but the horrible thing THK did to begin with.

The MO thing seemed worse to me. I saw her deliver the remarks on video, and it was a bit more nuanced than the way the rightwing will play it, but it is the kind of thing that really pisses off flag-button-wearing centrists. Won't hurt much in the primary, but could be a downer in the general election. I can see the 60 Minutes interview already. "When you said this campaign was the FIRST TIME you felt proud to be an American, ...."

Fortunately for Obama supporters, no spouse can match Bill Clinton for evoking contempt, mistrust and anxiety.

piscivorous
02-19-2008, 05:02 PM
There is also quite a bit of difference when he can us a teleprompter than when it is broken and he has to work from cards Jefferson-Jackson Dinner (http://video.on.nytimes.com/?fr_story=50c740f6d27149d773216ea63199998460d9b9bc ) Feb 9th. While the rhetorical flourishes, and tone were evident the characteristically flawless delivery was absent. It seems that he wanders of the beaten path down side streets away from his normal post partisan, conciliatory and optimistic tone to partisan carping and anger. If you've got 30 minutes to spare it's an interesting contrast.

TwinSwords
02-19-2008, 05:52 PM
Obama made some comment about how HRC "periodically" gets upset and moody. I am paraphrasing
That's not what Obama said, but it does appear to be what a lot of people heard. His exact words were, "I understand that Senator Clinton periodically, when she's feeling down, launches attacks as a way of boosting her appeal."

The "down" he was referring to was "down" in the race, losing momentum and falling behind Obama in the polls. He was not suggesting that she attacks when she is "emotionally down," but unfortunately, by inserting the word "feeling" in the statement, Obama has opened himself up to this interpretation.

In my opinion, it's simply common sense: The statement makes sense and is factually accurate when you interpret "down" to describe her poll standing and the momentum of her campaign. It makes very little sense when you interpret "down" to be a reference to her mood. (How would Obama know when Hillary is emotionally down? And why would he choose to talk about it with reporters?)

In any event, regardless of which interpretation you believe, Obama did not say she "gets upset and moody." (I realize you said you were paraphrasing.)

Here's YouTube video of Obama's unfortunately remark: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qNpeGPdhEw

This is like the John Kerry joke that was twisted into an attack on the troops. The language can be used to defend either side of the argument, which is precisely why the wingnuts decided to exploit it.

Another example is Michelle Obama's comment some time ago about how Barack Obama, as a black man, could be shot at the corner gas station, let alone running for president. Most people realized she meant that the black community is ravaged by violence. Republicans interpreted it as a suggestion that black men were still subject to violent lynching by whites, which of course caused enormous resentment among conservatives.

These are all ambiguous statements that can be interpreted in different ways, but are always interpreted in ways that serve pre-existing attitudes.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 06:02 PM
So what it has been in the press now for 3-4 weeks. I guess that's not stoking the flames just poking around in the ashes I guess.

No, that isn't what I'm getting at.

Right now the race issue is being handled in a way that I would call "Democratic style". Hillary Clinton makes the point that basically, you needed an LBJ (that is, a president who was amendable to signing Civil Rights legislation) before any of the Civil Rights movement could take fruition. Before that, it was people sitting outside the room, outside the building. Not at the table.

This got twisted into a smear on MLK.

Then the comment about "fairy tale", which is so ambiguous you can put anything you want on it, got turned into a smear.

Then the remark about Jesse Jackson and South Carolina was portrayed as a dig.

(These are just the ones I am catching from Japan. There may have been a few others that I am not including, but I do not think there are.)

There was an uproar on the one side, and then the ritual apologies and/or excuse making on the other. And I think, it seems to me, that both sides tried to put the negativity past them.

But when it will be the Republicans, playing to a demographic where African- Americans are not a concentrated voting bloc, it will be different. Indeed, not only will blacks not be a voting bloc that the Republicans would go after, they have been for the last 40 years the foil by which Republicans win election. The so-called Southern Strategy that seems to work so well at any latitude where there are a sizeable number of black people and working or middle class whites living in relative proximity (a metro area, for example.)

This discussion, for obvious reasons, is not happening in the Democratic Party right now. If it is happening, it is going on in private. To what extent will the Southern Strategy work against the Democrats when the nominee is black?

It seems to work against them when the candidate is white. Except the two times when a Southerner was put on top of the ticket. (Even then, the third time they tried one, the Southerner lost.)

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 06:17 PM
Can you describe demographically this group of whites who were "set back" by Civil Rights and the elimination of apartheid?

You have taken the quote entirely out of context. What I said was the group of whites set back by "Diversity", which to me at least when it is invoked is some sort of undefined, I dunno, "thing", that basically says we are equal but some of us are more equal than others. (And it suggests that if your ancestry is anyone who even looks northern European, you aren't "diverse" unless you are ABBA or have a continental English accent.)

I think the overwhelming number of voters were in favor of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and no one felt "set back", as you say. Just the example of my own home state of New Jersey, all 14 or 15 of the Congressional delegation of that time voted in favor (both D and R), and New Jersey had a modern civil rights statute (a '64 style statute) as early as 1945 --- one of the first states to do so.

And as far as "apartheid", the Jim Crow system was like apartheid, but few would expressly say that we had apartheid in America. In fact, as I recall, there was a big war sometime around the middle of the 19th century where I think the nominal "winning side" was in favor of no sort of society like apartheid at all.

Your equating:

Civil Rights = "ending apartheid" = undefined "Diversity" says something that I feel is very interesting.

cragger
02-19-2008, 06:31 PM
To jump in - regarding the electoral argument, I suspect that most of the relevant problem regarding affirmative action backlash is one of perception and attitude, not actual effect.

For every borderline white applicant to a college who didn't get accepted because preferance was given to a similarly qualified black applicant, there are likely many who wouldn't have gotten in anyway but who find blaming reverse discrimination attractive. Its a rare person who is actually responsible for anything, its somebody else's fault. That should probably be the national motto.

Given any unhappiness or insecurity, and a cottage industry to tell you just in case you can't figure it out for yourself, that its all somebody else's fault. This just becomes another stick to beat an Obama campaign with.

Outside political junkies, nobody reads policy papers or cares about party platforms. Most people either vote the same party regardless of the election, current candidates, or current issues, or go into the booth and just pick whoever they feel a little more comfortable with. "I Like this guy, something about that guy I don't like".

Smear campaigns work. Its why we keep getting them.

jag121
02-19-2008, 06:56 PM
From about 15:05-15:45 Byron York rips on the Democratic proportional delegate system as the ultimate expression of the liberal "they're all winners, we don't want to have any losers. Everybody on the playground can be a winner. If somebody wins he gets a little bit more than the other guy." Philosophy.

Just for fun, I redid the delegate counts in a winner-take-all system, awarding all the delegates, pledge- and super-, to whoever got the most votes in a given state. This resulted in Obama winning with 1396 delegates to Clinton's 1325. The gap is surprisingly close to that which exists in real life.

Is it possible that it's the will of the voters, rather than 'arcane' selection rules which have made the democratic competition so close?

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 07:30 PM
To jump in - regarding the electoral argument, I suspect that most of the relevant problem regarding affirmative action backlash is one of perception and attitude, not actual effect.

For every borderline white applicant to a college who didn't get accepted because preferance was given to a similarly qualified black applicant, there are likely many who wouldn't have gotten in anyway but who find blaming reverse discrimination attractive. Its a rare person who is actually responsible for anything, its somebody else's fault. That should probably be the national motto.

. . .


Smear campaigns work. Its why we keep getting them.

Like you say.

I'm not certain that with "affirmative action", which seems to be a subset of "Diversity", there is an element of people who wouldn't have made the grade to begin with, and they point to affirmative action. But on the whole, what affirmative action does is take a seat or job from someone who is equally qualified, and give it to a black person. That is what it does.

Within the Democrats you then get the moral argument. Which probably isn't meant to fit into the kinds of smear campaigns that you refer to on the separate topic, but there is an irony.

There will be voters who see the Affirmative Action Presidential Candidate. McCain won't say it, it will be said in subtle ways by surrogates.

My own bet is that the bigger draw will come from making the subtle attacks on "Diversity", most of which are well deserved. "Diversity" would include both the Affirmative Action and the Illegal Aliens issue, as well as the numerous instances where the job or school seat does not go to the white person (particularly white Christian.)

The lefties around Obama, who crow about winning states like Idaho, are going to try and sheet those who are sensitive to this issue. They will end up insulting a lot of people they really should not have insulted. And that's where it will backfire.

Once the Democratic primary-cum-sibling-rivalry-spat is over, the dynamics are going to change. And I don't see where anyone around the Obama campaign has the skill to do it any differently than this very narrow identity politics that is going on within the Democrats currently.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 07:33 PM
Is it possible that it's the will of the voters, rather than 'arcane' selection rules which have made the democratic competition so close?

It is a great point. It can just well be that the Democratic voters are split close to 50-50, and so the result.

cragger
02-19-2008, 09:31 PM
I'm not certain that with "affirmative action", which seems to be a subset of "Diversity", there is an element of people who wouldn't have made the grade to begin with, and they point to affirmative action

(If I cared more I'd worry about how to make that green. The website might change, but the lime lives on. Hmm. You know, I kinda like that. "The lime lives on". Maybe that should be an option for mugs and t-shirts. Or "lime never dies". No. "Lime never sleeps." Thats it! Don't know about anyone else but I'm scaring myself here.)

I on the other hand am quite sure that there are plenty of people ready, willing, and able to blame affirmative action for their failings. Or to blame any other group. Blame anyone but themselves for all their failings and every disappointment in their lives. Which was sort of my point. Along with the fact that those folks, some of whom have listened to a couple decades of "listen friends, its like this, its all their fault" radio, and who will hear plenty more of the same, will be a factor in the upcoming smear campaign against Obama if he is the Democratic nominee.

Yes, with what remains of affirmative action, in some instances a black candidate will be chosen over a relatively equal white candidate. Physically attractive candidates are similarly advantaged in many situations. As are job candidates who went to the same school as the interviewer. Absent any other criterion, interviewers tend to go with whoever they personally feel more comfortable with. So what? Flip a coin and somebody loses. In most cases, if the chosen candidate can't hack it they wind up replaced in the long run. So it goes, life is tough. People need to learn to grow up and move on and stop whining about how unfair it is and how its all somebody else's fault they didn't get into their first choice for college even though they spent their senior year in high school practicing their beer drinking skills and trying to get into the cheerleaders' pants.

attacks on "Diversity", most of which are well deserved. "Diversity" would include both the Affirmative Action and the Illegal Aliens issue,

The buzzword "diversity", came along a couple decades after affirmative action, which is now generally on the wane. I'm not sure what your point is there unless you are trying to express an objection to immigration. And blame that on Obama?

I think that the inevitable smear campaign against whoever is the Democratic candidate will include elements of "affirmative action candidate" and carefully closeted racism should that candidate be Obama. On reflection however, it doesn't seem certain that an Obama campaign would mount a crude return attack of "you are all racists" that would have a backlash as you suggest. It seems equally possible that a perception could arise that he is being unfairly smeared over race and that such and attack could have a backlash against the Republican candidate.

Hoofin
02-19-2008, 10:05 PM
I'm not certain that with "affirmative action", which seems to be a subset of "Diversity", there is an element of people who wouldn't have made the grade to begin with, and they point to affirmative action

(If I cared more I'd worry about how to make that green. The website might change, but the lime lives on. Hmm. You know, I kinda like that. "The lime lives on". Maybe that should be an option for mugs and t-shirts. Or "lime never dies". No. "Lime never sleeps." Thats it! Don't know about anyone else but I'm scaring myself here.)

I am not so much scared, but I entirely lose what you are trying to get at there. Are you referring to some Stateside commercial or pop culture thing?



I on the other hand am quite sure that there are plenty of people ready, willing, and able to blame affirmative action for their failings. Or to blame any other group. Blame anyone but themselves for all their failings and every disappointment in their lives. Which was sort of my point. Along with the fact that those folks, some of whom have listened to a couple decades of "listen friends, its like this, its all their fault" radio, and who will hear plenty more of the same, will be a factor in the upcoming smear campaign against Obama if he is the Democratic nominee.

I am not sure there are failings to be blamed for in these circumstances. Usually, where Affirmative Action is involved, it is usually with some privilege (like a school seat) or a economic benefit (like a job) where it is very likely that someone well-qualified gets hosed because they weren't, well, they didn't fit the profile.

There may be people who blame everything on Affirmative Action. But they are probably a small minority. I think everyone else has a legitimate beef. They didn't cause the original problem, and get no credit for having been forced to be part of the solution.


Yes, with what remains of affirmative action, in some instances a black candidate will be chosen over a relatively equal white candidate. Physically attractive candidates are similarly advantaged in many situations.

I'm surprised about how you blithely go over the very point about what offends people about Affirmative Action. People are being picked based on how they look. Not the content of their character.


As are job candidates who went to the same school as the interviewer.

So now we also compare Affirmative Action to crony corruption. A ringing endorsement.

Absent any other criterion, interviewers tend to go with whoever they personally feel more comfortable with. So what? Flip a coin and somebody loses.

Back in the day, the "personally feel comfortable with" was the excuse people used to discriminate against blacks, by the way. The idea after 1964 (really after 1865), was that this sort of thing wasn't supposed to be happening to anybody.


In most cases, if the chosen candidate can't hack it they wind up replaced in the long run. So it goes, life is tough.

How nice. I get the job because I don't quite measure up. Then, I get to make money and have a career until someone decides, if they ever do, that I can't hack it. Then, I get to be someone else's Affirmative Action candidate. Sweet.


People need to learn to grow up and move on and stop whining about how unfair it is and how its all somebody else's fault they didn't get into their first choice for college . . .

Which is exactly why merit should play a much greater role in college admissions than "diversity" (whatever that really means). Even if it means the school is a little more uncomfortably white or Asian than what other people might see as the ideal world of theirs.


even though they spent their senior year in high school practicing their beer drinking skills and trying to get into the cheerleaders' pants.

That is an awfully simplistic dismissal for the reason why many young Asians in California don't get admitted into the best colleges of their state university system.



The buzzword "diversity", came along a couple decades after affirmative action, which is now generally on the wane. I'm not sure what your point is there unless you are trying to express an objection to immigration. And blame that on Obama?

No, my point is that no one is quite sure what "diversity" means. As Shelby Steele had once said, it seems to mean that the sayer has good intentions. That's not enough for me (and wasn't for him in his essay, as I recall.)

What is diversity?


I think that the inevitable smear campaign against whoever is the Democratic candidate will include elements of "affirmative action candidate" and carefully closeted racism should that candidate be Obama. On reflection however, it doesn't seem certain that an Obama campaign would mount a crude return attack of "you are all racists" that would have a backlash as you suggest.

I would put odds on it. And I don't even bet.


It seems equally possible that a perception could arise that he is being unfairly smeared over race and that such and attack could have a backlash against the Republican candidate.

If it's anything like what happened with "the Clintons" and comments that were made by them, it's unlikely there would be a blacklash on the Republicans.

cragger
02-20-2008, 07:13 PM
The "green" musing was a reference to the pre-redesign website, and elements of the current color scheme including cut-and-paste comments as some paste them in. My way of having some fun while thinking about a previous BW/MK diavlog about picking BHTV slogans.

You seem to think there is a big pool of victims of unjustice due to affirmative action. I don't, but think that human nature being what it is, there are plenty of people willing to blame that or whatever else for any and all failings and dissapointments. Either case offers a potential avenue of attack in the upcoming smear campaign.

You also seem to want to discuss, or argue about affirmative action. I have neither attacked nor defended it as a policy, and my sole interest here is and has been the question of how that attack might play, which seemed to be the theme of the thread as I entered it.

As to your final comment on the Clintonian comments at the time of the SC primary, I took them to be first intended to discount Obama's win there in an attempt to maintain the idea of Hillary's inevitable victory. To the extent that they were or could be a coded way of saying "don't get excited about, or waste your vote on, a black candidate who can't win" in an attempt to depress any bounce or momentum, I'm at a loss to see how Obama reacted in a way that hurt his campaign. It seems instead to me that this all hurt Hillary, not Obama. He seems as of this posting to be doing pretty well.

This "race card" episode to the extent it was that, together with my view of both campaigns overall, has indicated that the meme many are trying to push of "the Clintons are slick and skilled politicans and Obama is a babe in the woods who will be fresh meat for McCain" is unsupported by events thus far.

Hoofin
02-20-2008, 08:13 PM
The "green" musing was a reference to the pre-redesign website, and elements of the current color scheme including cut-and-paste comments as some paste them in. My way of having some fun while thinking about a previous BW/MK diavlog about picking BHTV slogans.

OK - this was about Bob's change from the old BBS to this one.

You seem to think there is a big pool of victims of unjustice due to affirmative action. I don't, but think that human nature being what it is, there are plenty of people willing to blame that or whatever else for any and all failings and dissapointments. Either case offers a potential avenue of attack in the upcoming smear campaign.

Affirmative Action is a subset of "Diversity". The thing I have been talking about is "diversity". No one seems to be able to pin down what policies of diversity really mean. They divert always to something else.

I am saying that skepticism about "diversity" is going to be played on by the Republicans. And they will be good at it. It will be very 21st century, not the poo-poo responses of well placed university administrators and other liberal elites.

You also seem to want to discuss, or argue about affirmative action. I have neither attacked nor defended it as a policy, and my sole interest here is and has been the question of how that attack might play, which seemed to be the theme of the thread as I entered it.

No no. I have been talking about "diversity". There is a lot of emotionalism in those who support this vague, vague concept. The fact that Obama himself is very vague, vague about why it should be him and not her, is something that only now people who are skeptical about Obama are pointing out.

As to your final comment on the Clintonian comments at the time of the SC primary, I took them to be first intended to discount Obama's win there in an attempt to maintain the idea of Hillary's inevitable victory. To the extent that they were or could be a coded way of saying "don't get excited about, or waste your vote on, a black candidate who can't win" in an attempt to depress any bounce or momentum, I'm at a loss to see how Obama reacted in a way that hurt his campaign. It seems instead to me that this all hurt Hillary, not Obama. He seems as of this posting to be doing pretty well.

No, I didn't say he hurt his campaign. I'm saying there was a period of about four or five days where everything "the Clintons" said was being turned into code language. But when it will be the Republicans, it won't be much of a convincing campaign to take everything McCain and especially the 527s say, and interpret it as code language.

I don't think Bill Clinton hurt Hillary Clinton's campaign by the statement. Hillary Clinton wasn't going to get the black vote anyhow--that should have been clear from the get-go. She's white, running against a black who has the best shot ever to become president. I think the liberal elite creted the baiting story, and successfully. But tactics like these will backfire in the general.

This "race card" episode to the extent it was that, together with my view of both campaigns overall, has indicated that the meme many are trying to push of "the Clintons are slick and skilled politicans and Obama is a babe in the woods who will be fresh meat for McCain" is unsupported by events thus far.[/QUOTE]