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Bloggingheads
03-23-2008, 10:48 PM

Mensch
03-24-2008, 01:08 AM
Good Diavlog. It's unfortunate it was recorded prior to Obama's speech on race. Why did it take 10 days to post this?

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 01:13 AM
I have a slightly different take and that is;thank the lords of technical glitches,I ass_u_me, that we finally have a diavlog not about the "speech."

Wonderment
03-24-2008, 02:35 AM
Remaining -- after all these horrific years -- a Bush sycophant and an apologist for the war is apparently not enough for the shameless David Frum.

In addition, at approx. 20:30 he has the amazing, off-the-charts chutzpah to evade Jacob's question and try to pass the buck to.......... Al Gore!!!!!!!

That's really, really despicable, David. No one asked you to what-if Al Gore. Jacob asked if Bush was wrong to initiate the Iraq holocaust. Your weaseling non-answer is as disturbing as your participation in the criminal enterprise in the first place.

Eastwest
03-24-2008, 03:41 AM
Even when one disagrees with the statements or views of a DV participant, I really don't get how it's either appropriate or effective to make ad hominem character judgments.

Frankly, there's no place for it.

The discussion was a good-natured exchange of ideas carried on reasonably intelligently. I disagree with both Weisberg and Frum on too many things to list. Still, appreciate the opportunity to plumb their mindsets.

Weisberg's sipped quite a bit of the Obama cool-aid and Frum (who politically, I have almost zero sympathies for) was correct to challenge this by noting that Obama is keeping so much under his hat that he's unreal and opaque in his public presentation and could be either very good or a complete disaster.

As Weisberg acknowledges, Hillary, even for all of her "charisma suboptimals" is at least fairly well guaranteed to be at least "very competent."

Hate to gamble on job applicants when we'll all be deeply affected by the most hazardous and challenging presidency in a century.

And so the circular firing squad primary race continues...

As for the book topic (Bush's mind), we already know enough not to waste time dwelling on that.

EW

Wonderment
03-24-2008, 04:37 AM
You have a point. Let's not indulge in ad hominem attacks. Let's just tell the truth and appropriately apportion accountability:

As of Sunday, March 23, 2008, at least 4,000 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the Iraq war in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count.

nojp
03-24-2008, 04:47 AM
Ole D Frum never disappoints.
He always employs some logic, no matter how twisted, convoluted, or fantastical. David, ever the nice guy has always has been most shameless.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 04:47 AM
A recent study by Healthgrades found that an average of 195,000 hospital deaths in each of the years 2000, 2001 and 2002 in the U.S. were due to potentially preventable medical errors. We must quickly retreat from providing health care to patients as we are butchering them by the 100,00s of thousands each year.

deebee
03-24-2008, 08:48 AM
It would be interesting to see these two update their observations post-Jeremiah-Wright world, particularly regarding the "Race as Shield" topic.

I do believe that race was first interjected into the campaign arena when Obama's minions reacted in their over-the-top way to the LBJ-MLK analogy and the fairy tale remark. Unfortunately Bill Clinton's Jesse Jackson comment gave real or imagined credence to their argument and we are where we are.

I also agree with David Frum (with whom I seldom agree) that there has been a minimal amount of negativity in this Democratic primary and I believe that its perceived nastiness may merely reflect the raw sensitivities that arise whenever race and gender are the elephant (or donkey in this case) in the room. I really wish that we had avoided all this by nominating a more traditional candidate this time around and waited for this experimentation when less was at stake.

deebee
03-24-2008, 09:58 AM
An interesting article appeared in Slate in February that discussed the personality traits of the candidates based on the Keirsey testing model at
http://www.slate.com/id/2184696.

Apparently both Clinton and McCain fall within recognizable Presidential categories but Obama does not. Hence the vexation and discomfort expressed in this diavlog regarding exactly what type of President Obama would be since there has never been a President of his personality profile before. Obama's type is generally a leader of a movement and not an office holder.

It is obvious that Obama is a movement leader of some sort, but it's certainly a strange one unlike King's Civil Rights etc. Could it be that Obama is a leader without a cause other than his own aggrandizement and a "lets all get along" theme which ultimately begs the question "what exactly is he trying to do"?

brucds
03-24-2008, 10:59 AM
"Obama is keeping so much under his hat that he's unreal and opaque in his public presentation"

It's funny because THAT's the real "Obama Kool-Aid." I hear people say stuff like this about Obama all the time. It's a form of "conventional wisdom" that's utterly indefensible when analysed in the context of Obama's speeches, campaign, policy papers, etc - which are as detailed as anyone's. The guy gave three speeches in three days last week. He's the only presidential candidate in memory who has written a memoir that's something other than calculated campaign blather. No one speaks with the degree of honesty that Obama consistently musters - yet he's the guy who is "unreal and opaque in his public presentation." Good god - have you listened to McCain or Hillary. Please tell me what McCain hasn't been "unreal and opaque" on other than "100 years of more war." What does Hillary Clinton actually stand for in the context of the Democratic party spectrum ? (I say that given her still strong ties to the DLC in contrast to her conveniently populist primary rhetoric.) People who claim that Obama is "just another candidate" only more clever may right. I doubt it and don't share the willful cynicism on the basis of much evidence that he's something - at least a bit - more than most. But to suggest that as a presidential candidate he's uniquely "opaque and unreal" is bizarre. It's difficult to even imagine what candidate and what campaign anyone who claims such has been following. I think it says more about the folks who repeat that one than it does about Obama.

brucds
03-24-2008, 11:17 AM
"Could it be that Obama is a leader without a cause other than his own aggrandizement and a 'lets all get along" theme which ultimately begs the question "what exactly is he trying to do'?"

No. Try paying attention and skip the gibberish. Anyone who asks "what exactly is he trying to do" is demonstrating some combination of ingrained bias and, perhaps willful, ignorance. A much bigger question is "what exactly is Hillary trying to do" other than get elected. At this point her (doomed) efforts are simply damaging the party. The sense of entitlement and hubris demonstrated consistently by the Clinton campaign - and its failure on the ground, combined with the denial that persists - suggests that Hillary's good intentions and her assumed "competence" as a leader are vastly overstated.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 11:21 AM
Mr. Carroll may be correct in this. If you went by the Myers Briggs personality types you will often find Nixon listed as an ENFP the same type as Obama as per deebee above.

brucds
03-24-2008, 11:22 AM
"David, ever the nice guy has always has been most shameless."

Yeah - funny. He's one of the nicest utterly disgusting and dishonest human beings I've ever encountered.

brucds
03-24-2008, 11:26 AM
There's nothing like second-hand psuedo-science done long-distance by amateurs, is there piscovorous ? The CAPS help your case, of course (no pun intended.)

What wankery...

Mensch
03-24-2008, 11:30 AM
I have a slightly different take and that is;thank the lords of technical glitches,I ass_u_me, that we finally have a diavlog not about the "speech."lol

You do have a point there.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 11:37 AM
Obama, Emil Jones and Earmarks (http://www.talkleft.com/story/2008/3/23/224059/069)

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 11:43 AM
brucds:

"Obama is keeping so much under his hat that he's unreal and opaque in his public presentation"

It's funny because THAT's the real "Obama Kool-Aid."

That's a nice way of putting it. David Frum's entire case against Obama boils down to this: pick an issue (war, foreign policy, economy, race) and insert it into this sentence: "Sure, we've never seen any evidence of Obama having crazy views on , [I]but how do we know we won't once he gets into the White House?"

To be fair about it, the Kool-Aid goes further than Frum evinces. Think how often you've heard someone say about last week's speech: "That 'honesty' thing proves what a phony he is."

Is there some Kool-Aid behavior among some Obama supporters? Undoubtedly. One need only think of Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush, JFK, or George Washington for that matter, to realize that there will always be a few people who want to canonize their man. But you're absolutely right about the inanity of this kind of Obama bashing. There is just no rationality involved.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 12:10 PM
Jacob Weisberg say that winner take all primaries are big no-no to the Democrats because they believe in proportionality. Given the popular vote of 13,345,318 for Senator Obama and 12,634,376 for Senator Clinton and respective delegate counts of 1,414 and 1,247 means that Senator Obama only had to get 9,438 votes for each delegate where as Hillary has had to get 10,132 to earn hers. It may have something to do with the inane caucus rules that dictate delegate assignment. A good example of this is Texas where Senator Clinton won the popular vote by around 100,000 but the delegate assignment went 98-94 in favor of Senator Obama. Not quite my understanding of proportionality.

rigger
03-24-2008, 12:24 PM
Frum needs to study a few more biographies of our presidents. Theodore Roosevelt was not self-reflective? We have had few presidents who were more self-absorbed and at the same time suffered from self doubt. Pick up a copy of Morris' biographies on TR. Frum is just spouting the party line.

brucds
03-24-2008, 12:25 PM
Texas was a split primary/caucus. Hillary won the primary vote - Obama won the caucus vote. Not too difficult to understand. I don't know that caucuses are "inane" - they are a format designed by the locals in Texas, Iowa, etc. Maybe they are in some sense to an outside observer, but I'll defer to the experiences and judgement of the folks in the state parties who have worked those things out over the years. I'm kinda conservative that way...

brucds
03-24-2008, 12:27 PM
"Frum is just spouting the party line."

Ya think ?

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 12:30 PM
I didn't call caucuses inane but the "inane caucus rules that dictate delegate assignment". I can understand that a concept that spans all of 7 words ma be hard to grasp but surly even you can do this. The Office of the Secretary of State (http://enr.sos.state.tx.us/enr/mar04_136_state.htm) vote count I ass_u_me includes both the primary vote and the caucus totals as there is no breakout.

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 01:09 PM
pisc:

It may have something to do with the inane caucus rules that dictate delegate assignment. A good example of this is Texas ...

You're partly right about this, but in the case of TX, and some other states, another somewhat peculiar aspect is that (primary) delegates are assigned with a weighting system per district that relates to turnout in the previous election, or something close to that.

There's no doubt that there's a lot of strangeness about a lot of the details from one state to the next, and I'm undecided about caucuses vs primaries, but I do like the proportional assignment of delegates in general. The thing about a winner-take-all system is that it's too easy for a candidate to eke out wins in IA and NH and maybe SC, and wrap up the nomination right there. The thinking behind proportional assignment is that it gives the chance for there to be a longer race and less advantage to the perceived front-runner. This allows more states to have a say, which is probably the thing of most concern in the primaries.

stup3715
03-24-2008, 01:22 PM
I think that both of discussants miss one very important factor that pervades Bush's makeup. He is recovering alcoholic. He admits this freely. Recovering alcoholics have very distinctive character traits. One that is almost always present is an exaggerated sense of there own importance. This is usually discussed in the medical literature as "grandiosity." Anyone who has been associated with alcoholics will recognize this. If you are not acquainted with it just Google "dry drunks" and or "grandiosity" and you will get several good descriptions of the syndrome. It does not explain everything about him, but it goes a long way. Without this knowledge some of Bush's bizarre ideation is difficult to understand.

Otherwise this was an interesting diavlog.

graz
03-24-2008, 01:24 PM
[QUOTE=Eastwest;72301]Even when one disagrees with the statements or views of a DV participant, I really don't get how it's either appropriate or effective to make ad hominem character judgments.

Frankly, there's no place for it.


EW:
That a howler. Have you reviewed your last 20 odd posts.

You have attempted to eviscerate Obama based on his hand movements at the podium, his posture and alternating between his anger displayed and his subterfuge of hiding his real anger by keeping it in and lecturing his scolds.

Now if that isn't the pot calling the kettle - what's that color?

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 01:27 PM
I really have no particular preference but it seems that the Democrats system is trying to slice the bread too thin and it is now falling apart in their hands.

brucds
03-24-2008, 01:30 PM
But the caucuse and primary voting are two different processes - so conflating the popular vote of both makes no sense. I don't know what caucus rules you are referring to. The problem you attribute here is a function of the inherent difference between caucuses and primaries. Perhaps caucuses are "unfair" in some sense because they reward party activists over casual voters. There's an argument that party activists have more invested in the nomination process than casual voters, but I'll leave that to the locals. I live in a primary state, but there's something very compelling about watching the Iowa process every election cycle or reading about the Vermont "town meetings." Very retro in our cynical "mass society" where politics - when we care at all - is as much a spectator sport as professional football or American Idol. Proportionality of delegate assignments based on past voting totals in districts actually makes sense, even though it may not seem to have been accurately calibrated in a year when turnout rates are vastly increased. Of course the "inane" rules would presumably recalibrate the weight of different districts for the next election. Of course, you probably know better how Texans or Iowans could better fulfill the promise of the Democratic Party. (No doubt you were up in arms at the horror of Florida 2000's shaky election process overriding the popular vote and subjecting us the worthless little shit for 8 years.)

deebee
03-24-2008, 02:13 PM
Caucuses by their very nature exclude certain demographics such as the infirm and elderly. For example, my mother had to vote by absentee ballot for several of her last years of life but she never missed the opportunity to do so. Participating in a caucus would not have been an option for her. I really don't know what is meant by the term "a casual voter" -- a voter is a voter. Others who may be disenfranchised are blue collar workers who work second shifts or other odd-hour such as nurses, waiters, young mothers with children who would have to get and pay for a babysitter for a longer period of time than for a primary. Without the option of absentee voting, they are out of luck!

Just look at the difference between the spread between the Washington State caucus vote and the mail-n vote a short time thereafter. Obama would still have won, but with a significantly lower margin. Party activists, after all, are NOT the only ones who will vote in a general election, so a primary is in my estimation a much clearer and fairer account of what is out there.

deebee
03-24-2008, 02:35 PM
Regarding brucds comment that "A much bigger question is "what exactly is Hillary trying to do" other than get elected. At this point her (doomed) efforts are simply damaging the party":

Since we still don't know what the fallout from the Wright controversy will be or what other potential scandals loom, it would be premature and even irresponsible for Hillary to leave the race just yet. What if it becomes apparent that Obama is unelectable after he becomes the nominee?

The Press has been reluctant to examine Obama's past until recently, even though it would have been incredibly easy to order a few Wright tapes etc. I know that the Obama supporters are anxious to wrap this thing up before anything else surfaces, but we should be glad that a light is being directed toward him right now rather than during the general election when it will be too late. I say give it some time and let the people have their say, even though I won't have mine since I live in Florida.

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 03:38 PM
I really have no particular preference but it seems that the Democrats system is trying to slice the bread too thin and it is now falling apart in their hands.

That's a legitimate interpretation. Nonetheless, I'll take it. Neither system is perfect, and as I said, the thing that puts proportional allotment in the lead is the chance for more states to have meaningful votes.

Despite all the handwringing of this year's unusual race, there are still nearly six months till the general election, so it's not a disaster yet. I would like to see the superdelegate mini-convention (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/19/opinion/19bredesen.html) in June, though, if the race still isn't decided. Going all summer with nothing to do but snipe at each other would be harmful, and probably even fatally so.

brucds
03-24-2008, 03:40 PM
Unreported scandals cut both ways. In fact there's a much larger probability that the Clinton's will disappoint us on that score than Obama. The business of Bill cavorting in Kazahkistan with some sleazebag seeking oil deals who then greased Clinton with $30 billion to his foundation and met with Kazahik officials in the Clinton livingroom - although it was inititially denied by the campaign - points in a rather fertile direction for our imaginations. Try using yours with a bit wider lens than Obamaphobia.

brucds
03-24-2008, 03:41 PM
That last was for "deebee"

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 03:42 PM
brucds:

... $30 billion ...

That seems high, by several orders of magnitude, even for an oil baron.

Wonderment
03-24-2008, 03:54 PM
David Frum's entire case against Obama boils down to this: pick an issue (war, foreign policy, economy, race) and insert it into this sentence: "Sure, we've never seen any evidence of Obama having crazy views on , but how do we know we won't once he gets into the White House?"

From this conversation Frum's view was, "..[I].since he's black, how do we know he won't turn on us once elected?"

deebee
03-24-2008, 03:57 PM
TO: brucds: If there are things about the Clintons that should come out, then let them come out too. But Fair is Fair -- let's not limit our investigations to one side only. By the way, on Meet the Press last week, David Broder also stated that Hillary should not get out yet and he definitely is no friend of the Clintons.

deebee
03-24-2008, 04:01 PM
Additional comment regarding the Briggs and Kiersey personality tests:

Quoting from Emily Yoffe’s Slate article: “Such personality testing is often derided by academia, but it's used widely by corporations, the military, and government to understand different leadership styles and the dynamics of working in groups.” So take that for what it’s worth – or not. In reference to the Nixon/Obama connection mentioned by Pisco..., I don’t recall seeing that in the article but it's interesting that this very analogy came up in this diavlog re: how the two of them were both introspective types.

I do remember from the article (or perhaps one of the links) that Obama would be the first “Idealist” President that we have ever had, which is probably why David Frum intuitively felt that Obama seems an unusual choice for that particular job. In the end an Idealist President may prove to be a good thing or a bad one – we just don’t know. It sounds like a good thing but what remains to be seen is whether or not he is a doer as well as a thinker. There is scant evidence that Obama has been much of a doer although he obviously thinks a great deal.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 04:13 PM
While it has been noted that this primary campaign so far is not overly rancorous, to which I for the most part agree, it is the nature of the race itself that is causing so much damage. As Senators Obama and Clinton are not at all far apart , on the issues and priorities, it is boiling down to a campaign solely based on personality and character differences. This almost insures that the longer it is contested the more personal it will get. While generally this type of campaign is not good, for the eventual winner, Senator Obama still has an opportunity to project himself as being able to not jump headlong into that particular mud pit; it is a fairly common perception that Senator Clinton is quite at home there. From what I see Senator Obama has now gotten knee deep in the mud, mostly attack through surrogates, but has began to personally respond and attack thus heading towards the deep end of the pit which will eventually wear at his image of bing a different kind of politician. While this was bound to be exposed, somewhere in the general election, to lose that cloak; it would have played play to his advantage to maintain that image ong as las possible.

It is better to pick a winner before the cut of a thousand knives mortally wounds the candidate, the benefit of winner take all primaries, vs the we got the most acceptable candidate as the winner got 50% + 1 vote of the highly sliced proportionality primaries.

Wonderment
03-24-2008, 04:35 PM
Regarding brucds comment that "A much bigger question is "what exactly is Hillary trying to do" other than get elected. At this point her (doomed) efforts are simply damaging the party":Since we still don't know what the fallout from the Wright controversy will be or what other potential scandals loom, it would be premature and even irresponsible for Hillary to leave the race just yet. What if it becomes apparent that Obama is unelectable after he becomes the nominee?

I support Obama on character grounds (I don't think there's much difference on the issues). But I think it would be nuts for Hillary to quit now. Her path to the nomination is not as difficult as pundits are making it sound.

The pundits are divided into Obamaphiliacs and Clintonophobes, so it's hard for her to catch a break in the media. But all she needs is:

1) Impressive victories in the key remaining primaries on the calendar

2) A dive in the polls for Obama

3) A plausible argument that she can construct a winning electoral college scenario in November and he can't.

If this comes together for her, she can still win. If it doesn't she should get out after the Puerto Rico primary and before the convention.

zookarama
03-24-2008, 05:18 PM
There is a sublime pleasure to be felt while watching Frum, time after time, get called out after winding his way up yet another logical dead end. Think I'll watch this one again. :^)

uncle ebeneezer
03-24-2008, 05:47 PM
Thank you Graz, for writing the first thing that came to my mind.

Incidentally, I still fail to see how we know that Hillary will be "very competent." I still have yet to hear or see any record of the so-called "experience" edge that she has been running her campaign on. I raised that question a while back and all that I have seen since then is: the recently released FOI report of her White House years (highly redacted) which limitted her foreign policy experience to meet-and-greet style PR photo-ops. And the Bosnia story where she went in under sniper fire, which was then proven to be "not true" with video footage on Youtube. In her defense she apparently "mis-spoke" (according to her campaign reps)...several times...and in her book. If Bill's presence in the White House is the guarantee of "very competent", fine. But aside from her husband's experience I still see no edge for HER competency to be President. But maybe all the answers are hidden under the blacked-out sections of the FOI report, along with the mentions of Whitewater, Monica, Kazakhstan, and NAFTA fundraisers.

If "character" is such an issue on judging Obama re: Pastor Wright, I would think that completely fabricating a tale of sniper-fire in order to present a distorted image of foreign policy expertise should be worth considering. If she can't tell us the truth about the things that happened when she was in the White House BEFORE, do we have any reason to think she'll be more honest next time?

graz
03-24-2008, 05:54 PM
I support Obama on character grounds (I don't think there's much difference on the issues). But I think it would be nuts for Hillary to quit now. Her path to the nomination is not as difficult as pundits are making it sound.

The pundits are divided into Obamaphiliacs and Clintonophobes, so it's hard for her to catch a break in the media. But all she needs is:

1) Impressive victories in the key remaining primaries on the calendar

2) A dive in the polls for Obama

3) A plausible argument that she can construct a winning electoral college scenario in November and he can't.

If this comes together for her, she can still win. If it doesn't she should get out after the Puerto Rico primary and before the convention.

Wonderment:
Every point you made about the possibility makes sense.
But it also seems to me that the delegate math argument is as persuasive.
Leaving aside the good of the party rationale for Clinton staying in or bowing out, how does your second point about polls really matter?
Short of the straw-man supposition that in the ensuing months Obama might be caught in flagrante delicato or tokin' on a crack pipe.

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 05:58 PM
Pisc:

Again, your case is not unreasonable. But picking a nominee too soon has its downsides, too. Think John Kerry.

I still think Dean could have beat Bush, and I certainly liked him better.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 06:06 PM
There is a 50/50 chance that an answer to that question will be answered this fall. If Senator Obama wins there will be no further illumination of the answer as there is nearly unanimous agreement that conditions are such the Democratic nominee should prevail in the fall. If McCain wins it should provide some measure of light into the dilemma.

brucds
03-24-2008, 06:14 PM
That $30 billion was $30 million...

Incidentlaly, has anyone seen much on this story beyond the original Times piece.

The "Clinton shouldn't get out" argument needs to be balanced by the question, does anyone really believe that if the tables were turned and the math was a hopeless for Obama he'd have been purged from the race by now. Let's get real about what this race is about - it's not small policy differences but what the balance of power is in the Democratic party going forward. If the Clinton wing prevails - with all of the grotesque baggage evidenced in her campaign (the Mark Penns, Terry McAuliffes, DLC operatives and other party hacks of the worst sort) - the Democratic party will continue to be the wretched mess that it's been and the country will continue to be screwed. As an example, did anyone see Hillary's crackpot corporate Dem proposal that a "working group" comprised of guys like Alan Greenspan and Robert Rubin deal with the current meltdown. That's crazy - these are the guys who denied the problems as they were building. This kind of thinking is on order of the New York Times asking all of the crackpots who got us into Iraq for suggestions on a path forward. The Clintons are "Night of the Living Dead" Democrats IMHO. Let's grow up and move on from the Clinton personality cult.

brucds
03-24-2008, 06:15 PM
That should have read "does anyone believe if the math were reversed Obama WOULDN'T have been purged from the race by now" - sorry.

brucds
03-24-2008, 06:19 PM
"I would think that completely fabricating a tale of sniper-fire in order to present a distorted image of foreign policy expertise should be worth considering. If she can't tell us the truth about the things that happened when she was in the White House BEFORE, do we have any reason to think she'll be more honest next time?"

Again, if Obama were caught in that level of fabrication he'd be eviscerated mercilessly. Sort of like McCain's "misspeaking" on Iraq - where it became clear via the repetition that five years in the guy's as bclueless and delusional as he was on Day One.

graz
03-24-2008, 06:29 PM
Thank you Graz, for writing the first thing that came to my mind.

Incidentally, I still fail to see how we know that Hillary will be "very competent." I still have yet to hear or see any record of the so-called "experience" edge that she has been running her campaign on. I raised that question a while back and all that I have seen since then is: the recently released FOI report of her White House years (highly redacted) which limitted her foreign policy experience to meet-and-greet style PR photo-ops. And the Bosnia story where she went in under sniper fire, which was then proven to be "not true" with video footage on Youtube. In her defense she apparently "mis-spoke" (according to her campaign reps)...several times...and in her book. If Bill's presence in the White House is the guarantee of "very competent", fine. But aside from her husband's experience I still see no edge for HER competency to be President. But maybe all the answers are hidden under the blacked-out sections of the FOI report, along with the mentions of Whitewater, Monica, Kazakhstan, and NAFTA fundraisers.

If "character" is such an issue on judging Obama re: Pastor Wright, I would think that completely fabricating a tale of sniper-fire in order to present a distorted image of foreign policy expertise should be worth considering. If she can't tell us the truth about the things that happened when she was in the White House BEFORE, do we have any reason to think she'll be more honest next time?

Uncle ebeneezer:

I think it is fair for anyone to question the likely approach or response of any of the candidates to potential presidential moments. It seems that we show our hands (or preferred choice) when we stretch the projection beyond credulity. For instance, your examples illustrated above are "reasonable." I'll let the unreasonable ones stand as offered by some other forum participants. The differences should be clear to the fence-sitters.
This is why I am so looking forward to face-offs between McCain and Obama.
I have full confidence that Obama will win on the merits as easily as style points. While his detractors are resorting to the tactic of attributing secret motive and agenda to his stated positions and responses, let the evidence stand. Call me a fool, but as much as I believe that a likely percentage (45% or so) will pull an opposition lever automatically, the important remaining small margin is going to be swayed by taking the full measure of what is at stake... as remarked on by you in previous posts - Iraq, race matters etc...

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 06:30 PM
brucds:

A big part of why the (no) sniper story isn't going to get legs is that Faux News and their ilk have no interest in tearing HRC down. They'd much rather run against her than Obama. And without the right-wing noise machine to push the story, the MSM will be too timid to "cover the coverage" of the story, the way they have with the Wright nonsense.

The second part of the problem is that a Clinton playing around with the truth is not exactly a man-bites-dog story.

But, in faint hopes of fanning the flames, here is my contribution to the Google web crawlers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=It6JN7ALF7Y

Wonderment
03-24-2008, 06:31 PM
Leaving aside the good of the party rationale for Clinton staying in or bowing out, how does your second point about polls really matter?

All I'm saying is, if (and it's a big if) CNN/Gallup/Rasmussen, etc. are showing good numbers for HRC and bad numbers for BHO...

Superdelegates would then have the decision: Should I support the delegate count and nominate a likely loser in the general election, or should I override and support a likely winner?

Clinton's argument has to be all about electability, and the polls provide the only guidance in that regard.

brucds
03-24-2008, 06:33 PM
"There is scant evidence that Obama has been much of a doer"

Yeah, among other things he "thought" his way to beating the Clinton machine in the primaries. Hillary hasn't had it this rough since she "thought" she was running through sniper fire in Yugoslavia.

graz
03-24-2008, 06:41 PM
All I'm saying is, if (and it's a big if) CNN/Gallup/Rasmussen, etc. are showing good numbers for HRC and bad numbers for BHO...

Superdelegates would then have the decision: Should I support the delegate count and nominate a likely loser in the general election, or should I override and support a likely winner?

Clinton's argument has to be all about electability, and the polls provide the only guidance in that regard.

I've got to say that I am always unsure what to make of polls.
Pols on the other hand are clearer. Make no mistake all three candidates are guilty as charged.
Yesterday's Iraq green zone attacks seem to fly in the face of polls showing that the so-called "surge" has turned the tide on escalating violence.
I see the flaw in my logic, but the value of polls still leaves me asking for more info.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 06:50 PM
I think we finally agree on something. Both of their records are rather thin and the both are trying t embellish their minor accomplishments. The thing I find troubling, in this embellishment, is that if a conservative candidate did this the MSM and many of the commentors here would call them lies which in reality they are.

graz
03-24-2008, 07:15 PM
I think we finally agree on something. Both of their records are rather thin and the both are trying t embellish their minor accomplishments. The thing I find troubling, in this embellishment, is that if a conservative candidate did this the MSM and many of the commentors here would call them lies which in reality they are.

Piscivorous:

Allow me to jump in on your reply to brucds
Without commenting on which side is more likely to be treated kindly by the MSM, I agree that an argument for embellishment is fair. So factoring in the difference between the candidates self-portrayal and there real accomplishments is a tricky calculus.
Just because MCcain has been at it longer does not make it clearer how he will govern or respond under fire.
You have been particularly dismissive of the notion that Obama is somehow offering a new and different sort of politics. I have to grant that your case for this is arguable, as evidenced by all the examples you have previously offered.
But I don't think that the candidates best case for our vote requires us to take it on faith alone. It is a long political season, with more than enough chance to read, listen and examine the details. As you have remarked, so much of this forum debate about the speech has lapsed into predictable patterns. So the only hope I have to win you over to my preferred choice - not that you have clearly stated yours - is to continue to argue and cajole. Why bother? Stakes is High. Sure, countering every charge and sometimes resorting to crying foul or asking you to check for cobwebs or rocks in your head is unfair if not rude.
But I must say, you seem up to the task of playing along.

uncle ebeneezer
03-24-2008, 07:33 PM
There's also the point that MY made very well, a ways back, that at least as far as foreign policy goes, MOST candidates have extremely thin resumes. Unless you are a VP, or serve on an important security board, odds are that you have little to no experience in foreign policy. Even McCain doesn't blow me away in that regard if you take away his service in Vietnam 40 years ago.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 07:46 PM
I know that many here will find this hard to believe but I have not yet made up my mind. There is a short list of personal characteristics that I feel import for a candidate to have. In no particular oder, as it is difficult to put them in an ordered list but more a blend, relative honesty for a politician, judgment, communication skills, the ability to grasp the larger picture as I see it, my judgment about the candidates ability to make a decision in a trimly manner and then to see it through the hard times, the ability to get things done (compromise where necessary) and last but not least the elusive and ephemeral judgment of likability. These should not be surprising for someone that is an INTJ Myers-Briggs Type.

As I have believed for quite some time, since the democratic nomination contest is one based on personality, the general contest will be between Senator Obama and Senator McCain and I honestly think it will be an interesting race.

graz
03-24-2008, 08:00 PM
[QUOTE=piscivorous;72368]I know that many here will find this hard to believe but I have not yet made up my mind.

Woo-hoo. No I do not find it hard to believe. I am pleased to hear it though, in light of your relentless, fine-toothed comb, magnifying glass, nit-picking, literal-minded interpretation straining to expose and explode the dems. And Florida is in "play" after all.

AemJeff
03-24-2008, 08:05 PM
I'd love to know on what basis David Frum rests this assertion (http://www.bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/9546?in=00:26:46&out=00:26:57).

Both the hypothesis about how the Afghan war would have gone in an alternate universe and the prediction of Democratic attitudes toward the war in his counterfactual. Most Democrats I know, myself included, supported the Afghan invasion. The support of people from both parties tends to flag as wars continue, and probably Democrats more so than Republicans, but it was clearly a justifiable (I'd argue necessary) action. The lack of justification for the Iraq invasion (and the spectacular mendacity with which it's apparent justification was framed) is the primary reason most people are opposed to it.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 08:19 PM
Yes but there is so little of it done here. Should I just become another part of the echo chamber? Will my growth and understanding of the candidates and the issues be enhanced by that, or yours for that manner if it is all about reinforcing ones current beliefs. There are obvious differences as to my personal opinions on the Iraq front in the "GWOT" or whether the global warming that has been occurring is anthropogenic or a natural phenomena and I don't apologize for arguing those topics fiercely for the decisions that this two issues demand are very important to me, but politics, at the national and global level, is the "art of the devil" and playing the devils advocate to increase my understand and knowledge, in this game of politics, on this particular BB I find useful.

Wonderment
03-24-2008, 08:36 PM
Both the hypothesis about how the Afghan war would have gone in an alternate universe and the prediction of Democratic attitudes toward the war in his counterfactual.

In my alternate universe, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Powell, Rice, Wolfowitz and Perle are indicted as war criminals for their roles in the invasion of Iraq.

Frum, as a war-mongering White House insider and propagandist, is called as a material witness. If he tells more little lies about the big lies, he gets busted for perjury and deported to Canada.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 09:00 PM
I'd love to know on what basis David Frum rests this assertion (http://www.bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/9546?in=00:26:46&out=00:26:57).

Both the hypothesis about how the Afghan war would have gone in an alternate universe and the prediction of Democratic attitudes toward the war in his counterfactual. Most Democrats I know, myself included, supported the Afghan invasion. The support of people from both parties tends to flag as wars continue, and probably Democrats more so than Republicans, but it was clearly a justifiable (I'd argue necessary) action. The lack of justification for the Iraq invasion (and the spectacular mendacity with which it's apparent justification was framed) is the primary reason most people are opposed to it.

While the premise, in bold, above has some validity it falls short of the reason why support of the action has fallen from 65-72%, depending on which poling data one choses to accept, at the start, of the Iraqi campaign, to their levels they are currently at it only explains it in part. If one looks at the current poling trends the support levels for continuing are rising indicating that some of the lost support is returning now that the actual progress is being made. So some of the lost support must be attributed to the perceived facts on the ground. They poling data also indicates that a substantial majority, at this point in time, believe that the the initial decision was a mistake, I am not one of those, but this is not golf and you get no Mulligans; so I don't have much empathy for those that have changed their minds and now feel so conflicted.

Note: Please be aware of my general attitude towards the usefulness of poles.

AemJeff
03-24-2008, 09:17 PM
Well Pisc, I have to admit that you have a point. I should have the the reasons I stated were why most people whose support hasn't flagged based on the venture's lack of success have been opposed.

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 10:11 PM
Note: Please be aware of my general attitude towards the usefulness of poles.

They're handy for batteries and dandy for dancers.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 10:20 PM
if only I ever dollar back that I have donated ot poles I could probably retire.

bjkeefe
03-24-2008, 10:39 PM
if only I ever dollar back that I have donated ot poles I could probably retire.

I dunno. I've never given a one, and I ain't rich.

piscivorous
03-24-2008, 10:41 PM
Yea but I've been in the money a couple of time in my years of existence and it flowed out as easy as it flowed in.

bjkeefe
03-25-2008, 04:06 AM
Pisc:

I do know that feeling. Think you'll hang onto more of it the next time around? I keep telling myself I will.

thouartgob
03-25-2008, 11:09 AM
I think the political leaders that the current crop of nominees and potential nominees think were effective or want to emulate would also say something about them and their presidential trajectories.

1.) Obama - Reagan: I think this pairing is something that might just work. Obama looks to "re-frame" ( I bored with that word too ) issues as well as use his Gob given charisma to work the retail end of things. I have a suspicion that he might just as successful but we shall see.

2.) Hillary - Johnson : Here I think the pairing works to some extent. I think that she would like to think she could emulate Johnson in wholesale end of politics by trying to jam whatever she could through a relatively hostile congress by whatever means she could politically afford. I don't think she would be nearly successful ( civil rights vs health care etc. ). We need "re-framing" not "triangulation" I think.

3.) McCain - Teddy Roosevelt ? : Based on what I have skimmed. I really don't think he will do anything nearly like TR though. He would like to think that he would be but I get the feeling he, like Bush, believes what he wants to believe. Like that he was practically alone and safety walking the streets of Baghdad last year, with just a few hundred soldier friends and a couple of black-hawks taking vacation photos for him.

Any other suggestions ( less snarky ones maybe ) ?

bjkeefe
03-25-2008, 11:18 AM
thouartgob:

Apart from the fact that the Senator from Arizona has billed himself as "a footsoldier in the Reagan Revolution" about fourteen quintillion times, I think the most accurate match, based on his latest set of stances, is summed up in one word: McSame.

I know you asked for less snarky answers, but really, there's nothing but truth there.

thouartgob
03-25-2008, 12:12 PM
thouartgob:
I know you asked for less snarky answers, but really, there's nothing but truth there.

Well I can't help my own snarkishness so I guess it is somewhat hypocritical of me to ask but it is early in the political season. It will only get worse the closer we get to November :-)