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Bloggingheads
04-18-2008, 07:43 AM

osmium
04-18-2008, 08:08 AM
i had pushed play but hadn't really started paying attention yet, and here (http://www.bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/10317?in=00:00:50&out=00:0054) i snapped to and wondered what on earth they were talking about. oh i get it, where's my mind? happy friday.

rcocean
04-18-2008, 09:38 AM
Love it when these two guys Diavlog. They just get along well together & are interesting even when when wrong (IMO).
Their comments on Barrack were fascinating.

Please more Glenn & John and fewer cookie-cutter lefties like Greenwald.

ohcomeon
04-18-2008, 09:52 AM
Over at TPM this morning a story is breaking about the woman who asked Obama about his lack of reverence for the flag. It will be an interesting story to follow as it reveals how these "citizen" questions are selected and used. The suggestion is they are used to ask questions too stupid for a real "journalist" to ask. I think that is the point. It is not that the talking heads are asking difficult, uncomfortable questions. That IS their job. It is that they are asking trivial and stupid questions that are therefore difficult for the candidates to answer.

For Democrats I think the real worry is that in the general the stupid questions to Obama will be about his lack of reverence for the flag, etc. while the stupid questions to McCain will be something about the difficulty inherent in being a true patriot while serving in the midst of idiotic politicans in Washington.

JoeK
04-18-2008, 10:11 AM
My guess is that Glenn's (some whould say) tolerant attitudes towards (violent) criminals rubbed Mr. Wright the wrong way, so he sent Heather Mac Donald to kick Loury's ass. I believe Bob is one of the lock'em-up-and-throw-away-the-key crowd. (Note to the programmers working at this joint: I should be able to do textual search through archived transcripts and as a result I should get dingalinks to the video). There is nothing wrong with that, and from the bloggingheads.tv editor's point of view, it was great move since the show was good, Glenn was very good and Heather was brilliant. But Glenn should look into it.

uncle ebeneezer
04-18-2008, 12:07 PM
Not related to anything particular from this diavlog, but I thought I'd throw this out there for your Friday enjoyment. Obama's response to the pile-on debate and irrelevant questions the other night:

http://matthewyglesias.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/04/dirt_off_your_shoulder.php#comments

For the record, I'm not voting for Obama BECAUSE he has a higher "coolness" factor than most politicians, but I don't think it's unreasonable to say that having a candidate that is a little more in touch with younger generations and different segments of the population than most of our old, white, male career politicians should not be an attractive notion for many voters. It's not the ONLY issue, but it's not completely unworthy of consideration. It's refreshing to have a candidate who takes a different political approach and comes from a different place (culturally, ethnically etc.) from what our political system usually offers us in potential candidates. Incidentally I found this comment by "Jake" to be priceless:

When we look at Obama, we see who we want to be.

When we look at Clinton, we see who we are. And we're douchebags.

Happy Friday- Uncle Eb

Sgt Schultz
04-18-2008, 01:32 PM
Enjoy this BhTV-oids.
http://tinyurl.com/52dswg
Now start counting the votes he lost.

popcorn_karate
04-18-2008, 01:54 PM
SGT Schultz - all I can say is wow. I followed your link and i have to say this is some of the weakest crap i've ever seen.

get a grip, buddy! If you hate Barak, you can do way, way better than that. step it up, you are making your side look like petty, whiners with way too much time on their hands.

come on, some of you intelligent republicans (i know there are a few at least that post on this site) help this guy out!

Jyminee
04-18-2008, 02:31 PM
Sarge:

You're obviously somewhat confused, so here's a video of someone actually flipping the bird, just so you can see what it really looks like.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=YVynnbx1Xsc&feature=related

Eastwest
04-18-2008, 02:43 PM
I love it when these guys do their DVs.

Sooo nice to hear their uniquely honest discussions so seldom throttled by the constraints of being so forced to be lock-step "PC" in all things.

Glad to see them both cop to the relevance of Shelby Steele's analysis of the Obama phenomenon.

Especially right on was Glenn's very thorough explanation of why he still supports Hillary and why he does not support Obama, especially as regards: 1) Competence; 2) Experience; 3) Ability to Do All Things Political with a Sensitivity to Nuance.

Thanks to both.

EW

thouartgob
04-18-2008, 02:51 PM
I am only 1/2 way through but another great diavlog.

I would quibble with a few things Glenn said about Hillary being the superior candidate and/or president. She has more experience to be sure it is a double edged sword. On the one hand she is somewhat less likely to make certain mistakes that obama has made and over the years she has created more political connections that will be useful in the coming years. On the other hand her experiences have calcified her and her image. She is tough to be sure but her mindset is that of playing on side off of another ( triangulation ) and to rely on older american political tropes ( pandering ). She tries to beat the republicans and their own game and by using their rules, rules that have been laid down since the early 80's. Her white house experience is a plus to be sure but I feel that she was more of a voyeur to power (at least after the health care issue) as opposed to wielding it (I don't know enough about the fused clintonian coupling to know if this is truly the case). Looking at how things have progressed over time she seems more likely to react to changes as opposed to responding to them. That tendency given her popular image can be problematic.

Obama is more deft and more likely to be able to reframe debates as opposed to being caught up in them ( not perfect of course ).

I do agree with Glenn that sexism is more problematic than racism. A woman elected to be president (specially in this country ) would be a transformative event that in many ways would overshadow a black president. Hillary however isn't a transformative figure. I believe if obama is nominated he is more of a "game changer".

There are issues about who would be better against McCain etc. but that is another post.

As a side note the diavlogs between glenn and john are the best discourses on race relations I have probably ever heard. When I first heard them they were interviewed separately ( a day apart ) by Christopher Lydon for his late lamented podcast that followed his tenure on the late lamented Connection radio show. I am sure he is completely jealous since these guys work great together.

look
04-18-2008, 04:03 PM
Not related to anything particular from this diavlog, but I thought I'd throw this out there for your Friday enjoyment. Obama's response to the pile-on debate and irrelevant questions the other night:

http://matthewyglesias.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/04/dirt_off_your_shoulder.php#comments


Happy Friday to you, Eb.

I saw this last night and laughed out loud it was so funny. But looking at a lot of the other comments at Matt's, I think there is potential for this to do some damage. Some posters there are concerned that it will be associated with a gangsta rapper, and some anti-female lyics were posted. Since it was released yesterday, and was viral this morning, I'm wondering how the week-end shows will treat it. You know O'Reilly and Rush will run with it.

Also, I think it plays eerily well into Glenn and John's discussion of masking and deal-making with white Americans. His mannerisms in the clip do have an air of traditional black performance to them, such as that displayed by Louis Armstrong, that Shelby Steele discusses.

Thus Spoke Elvis
04-18-2008, 04:13 PM
come on, some of you intelligent republicans (i know there are a few at least that post on this site) help this guy out!

Okay, here's a few reasons why I very likely won't be voting for Obama, even though I think I basically like the guy on a personal level. I'll describe my disagreements in very general terms:

1.) He's proposing a heck of a lot of new government spending programs. On a cultural/moral level, I want less government management of society, not more. On a policy level, his proposals are going to cost a ton of money; money we can't afford to be spending. Even if you rescind the Bush tax cuts to pay for your brand-new national health care program, you still aren't doing anything to reduce the deficit brought on by existing programs. We're spending a ton of money in Iraq, but we'll continue to spend tens of billions even under Obama's "redeployment" strategy (even a limited strategy in Iraq, according to most experts I've read, would require stationing tens of thousands of troops in and around Iraq).

2. He'll appoint progressive judges to the Supreme Court and federal courts. I strongly prefer significant changes in social policy to be based on changes made by the legislature, not from jurists who take an expansive reading of the Constitution to reflect current liberal attitudes regarding fundamental "rights" (e.g., the death penalty, due process, the territorial application of the Constitution). I really like Justices like Alito and Roberts, whereas Obama voted against both of their confirmations.

3. He lacks significant foreign policy experience, and it seems like he will rely on lots of Clinton-era foreign policy advisors. I'm not a great fan of this Administration's foreign policy, but I found Clinton's foreign policy to be middling and incoherent, and I'm skeptical whether those policies can work in a post-90s world of growing multipolarity and areas of conflict. They were at least as sloppy handling various foreign policy issues as the Bush Administration has been (the Bosnian genocide dovetailing into the Kosovo conflict, Somalia, Haiti, Rwanda, and arguably North Korea), but luckily didn't have as many chances to have a foreign policy crisis blow up in their faces as this Administration has had. Obama's stated position on trade also sucks, but I think he's probably just pandering to working-class voters and will embrace free trade.

4. I disagree with his stance on immigration issues. He has the same position as McCain's, so that's arguably a wash. The only difference is that I think Obama might be willing to push legalization more forcefully than McCain, as McCain won't have the support of his party.

There are many things I like about Obama, including his stance on environmental issues and federal funding of stem cell research. But those positions are largely similar to McCain's, while McCain doesn't carry the same baggage on some of the other issues I care about.

Bloggin' Noggin
04-18-2008, 04:36 PM
A while back, I took the position that a woman becoming president of the US would be a bigger breakthrough than a black man becoming president. Wonderment thought I was nuts, plausibly citing other Angela Merkel, Benazir Bhutto, Margaret Thatcher et al. But that didn't change my mind about America -- not sure quite why, though my guess is that it's because the American president is a) not just the leader of the governing party as in the parliamentary system, b) specifically identified as "commander in chief" of the armed forces makes, and c) head of the sole superpower.
I'm glad to hear John has the same feeling

I agree with everyone else that this is one of BHtv's greatest pairs -- if not the best.
However, I think the best discussion on BHtv of "Bittergate" was the Marc/Reihan diavlog, where Marc laid out all the possible interpretations and evaluated them all.
Mickey was helpful in pointing out that the original context was actually an attempt to explain small town PA to San Francisco ueber-liberals to get the latter to approach the former more sympathetically when they were canvassing. This context (plus the quite sympathetic preceding remarks) makes it hard to see the bit that has caused the firestorm as the candidate indulging in condescending and bloodless sociology. Ham-fisted and possibly mistaken he may have been, but I don't he was "formulating" PA voters "sprawling on a pin".

In any case, Hillary doesn't seem to be in a very good position to criticize Obama's "condescension" here -- see this post (http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/2008/04/17/what_she_said/).

And insofar as John himself endorses the Cosby view, doesn't he himself "condescend" to certain black families? Obama accepts some of this Cosby view of some aspects of "black culture", and he's actually quite forthright about these things when he addresses black audiences. Why isn't this "condescension" when applied to African Americans, when attempts to diagnose what's going on with certain white voters is? That question goes treble for Mickey Kaus, by the way.

I thought the most illuminating moment in the current diavlog was Glenn's take on "white supremacy" -- where a kind of status quo bias can be seen as a form of passive white supremacism. I am inclined to think there are better terms for this very general feature of human nature -- lottery winners are sure to think they just picked their numbers more skillfully than anyone else and George W Bush probably thinks he made his money and got to be president through his own skill alone. It's those the game is rigged against who notice the rigging. Nevertheless, it's a good point that this natural bias can have many of the same effects as a more overt racism.

I was delighted by Glenn's charming and disarming explanation of why he favors Hillary, by the way. I'd watch these guys as often as BHtv has them on: intellectually stimulating AND extremely personable and charming.
I do hope that John will be paired with Heather McDonald sometime -- it could be quite illuminating to see where he would disagree with her.

a Duoist
04-18-2008, 04:37 PM
If we Americans vote likeability, Mr. Obama clearly wins. If we vote for partisanship, Mrs. Clinton wins. But if we vote for 'boring,' Mr. McCain sweeps.

Bloggin' Noggin
04-18-2008, 04:48 PM
If we Americans vote likeability, Mr. Obama clearly wins. If we vote for partisanship, Mrs. Clinton wins. But if we vote for 'boring,' Mr. McCain sweeps.

I don't see that. His press corps clearly find the guy delightful on a personal level, and I doubt they would if he were truly boring. I understand he delights them with stories of his tomcat behavior and derring-do during his fighter jock days. He has a sense of humor and, even if his name for being a maverick is based upon policy incoherence (as Matt Y claims), he is isn't all that predictable.
At worst, the suggestion that he's boring is an ageist stereotype. More charitably, I'd guess you are reacting to the hero-hagiography of his campaign, which, of course, is rather boring

Wonderment
04-18-2008, 05:43 PM
They also exhibit the virtue of being more personally revealing, honest and open than other D-vlogers.

A lot of it is the chemistry between them (they're less candid when paired with others), but it's very admirable and intimate: the best use of the Vlog medium.

Bloggin' Noggin
04-18-2008, 05:50 PM
Michele is not a bargainer, but I found her pretty charming when I saw her on Colbert. She's not a charmer in Obama's way, but she has a down-to-earth quality that charms without setting out to charm, or so I thought on the basis of a few short snippets.

David Thomson
04-18-2008, 05:51 PM
“Barry” and Michelle Obama are race hustlers. They are playing the game for all it’s worth. This nonsense has put a lot of money into their wallets and helped them acquire enormous power. These two hustlers will set back race relations back minimally two decades. At the end of the day, Barry Obama is tacitly running a “get whitey” presidential campaign. He has every intention to especially stick it to white men. They are supposedly obligated to pay for all the past racism in American society. Hustlers like the Obamas have no intention whatsoever to help our country become “post racial.” Nope, the present situation pays too well. They want the good times to roll on forever.

AemJeff
04-18-2008, 06:00 PM
Heh. (http://bloggingheads.tv/forum/showthread.php?p=74320#poststop) Nothing more need be said.

Wonderment
04-18-2008, 06:33 PM
He has every intention to especially stick it to white men.

"Paranoia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paranoia)is a disturbed thought process characterized by excessive anxiety or fear, often to the point of irrationality and delusion. Paranoid thinking typically includes persecutory beliefs concerning a perceived threat. "

David Thomson
04-18-2008, 06:52 PM
“Nothing more need be said.”

Something tells me that the above comment is not meant as a compliment. Such is life. Nobody told “Barry” and Michelle to deliberately choose to move to Chicago and join a “get whitey” church. Is there something I perhaps missed? Did somebody point a gun at their head? I don’t think so. These two race hustlers then “earned” tons of money manipulating the white guilt stuff for all it’s worth. Michelle Obama, for instance, is paid thousands of dollars per hour sitting on corporate boards representing “diversity.” If Obama becomes our next president---the race hustling industry will really go nuts! We will see so many affirmative actions programs that our heads might explode.

I am not sure if Shelby Steele and I are completely on the same page. Nonetheless, I do believe that only a conservative "person of color" can be elected president. “Barry” Obama is a Democratic Party candidate and has to kiss too much of the behinds of the radical crazies. The middle of the road voters won’t go along with this nonsense. If Senator Obama held the political views of either Shelby Steele or Thomas Sowell---he would win by a landslide. He is not going to be rejected in November because of the color of his skin, but because of his weird values.

TwinSwords
04-18-2008, 09:06 PM
Thank you, Mr. Wright, for providing a platform for these two outstanding individuals — Glenn and John — and providing us (the audience) with the pleasure of listening to them expound.

I feel like I should be payng for BHTV by the credit hour. :-D

Baltimoron
04-18-2008, 09:06 PM
David Brooks discussed the symbols issue on the Online Newshour (no transcript yet). According to Brooks, the flag is a political symbol people can grasp and by which judge a candidate. Moreover, according to him, Obama has revealed himself as a professor.

I think The West Wing dealt with this issue. Toby used to rant about "Uncle Fluffy". I recall the fourth season episode where President Bartlet thrashed the GOP candidate in debate. And then some character talked about why his advisors told him to go hard. Basically the reasoning was, if Bartlet is going to be perceived as arrogant, because he's a brainy WASP, we might as well take no prisoners, and win.

Obama needs that kind of arrogance. The Clintons have it, and McCain is just angry.

seyoyo
04-18-2008, 09:15 PM
Both these eggheads completely missed the point about Obama's response to the Weather Underground question. Obama's point is that he can not be asked to account for the views of people he only knows tangentially. His retort to Clinton about the pardon, was solid because it buttresses his point. Nobody questions her about her links to the Weather Underground because her husband pardoned some of their members.

bjkeefe
04-18-2008, 09:15 PM
Baltimoron:

I think The West Wing dealt with this issue. Toby used to rant about "Uncle Fluffy".

I remember that well, and remember applauding and wishing the real world could be more like that.

Do you remember the WW episode where Pres. Bartlet was trapped in a meeting with people trying to win him over to support a Constitutional amendment to prohibit burning the flag. I'll never forget one bit -- someone is droning on about what the flag means to him or her, Bartlet is looking more and more heavy-lidded, Josh comes into the room, whispers to Toby ...

Josh: How's he doing?
Toby: I think he's thinking about ways to kill himself.

(me: applauding and wishing, op. cit.)

Baltimoron
04-18-2008, 09:24 PM
Good remarks!

1. How can Americans actually debate about more vs less government, etc. AND read symbols like flag lapel pins?

2. Presidents are figureheads, leading a cabinet of politicians who administer bureaucrats selected for professional, not political, qualifications. Regulatory agencies operate regardless of campaign season, congressional sessions, and executive terms. There's really very little to cut. So, presidents are America's lead diplomat and the cheerleader-in-charge. Schmitt and Salam made a great point about how little previous administrations have done for voters, but I would argue that it's impractical to ask the president to do too much.

Baltimoron
04-18-2008, 09:28 PM
Yes!

And, even though I often took issue with the views the Bartlet staff expressed, I adored their attitude! There was also the Fourth Season sequence in Orange County with Sam running for office. I'm a moderate, and I resented how the DNCC tool was portrayed, but I loved the "Damn the Torpedoes!" attitude Josh and Toby had.

Again, Obama needs to thrash!

bjkeefe
04-18-2008, 09:36 PM
Elvis:

Thanks, once again, for providing an answer from the right that is more than slogans or downright vitriol.

On your point 1, I can't disagree with very many specifics, since I don't know the numbers well enough. I would say that rolling back the tax cuts for the wealthy is a good place to start as far as getting the deficit back under control. I also think a reduced presence in Iraq could mean some savings as well. I think that the list of programs that Obama wants to put in place is more of a wish list, or at least, a starting point for negotiating. I'm a pretty severe deficit hawk myself, and it is my sense that the Democrats like that they have won that title a bit since the Clinton years, and are not about to go back to wild spending on social programs. Plus, I doubt the Senate will become at least 60-40 Dems, so the filibuster will always be there to keep the breaks on.

On your point 2, we just plain have different values. Not much to be said beyond that, except that I really think a Court stacked with anti-choice judges could do some real harm.

On your point 3, I would say that it's been a long time since anyone did a good job in foreign policy. Clinton had some successes and some failures, I think, and I agree that he suffered from being "middling and incoherent." (I would say that coherence carries its own risks, too, as evidenced by the current administration.) I'm perfectly happy with Obama's freshness getting an approach, since Clinton is definitely going to be advised by Clinton advisors, and I don't see McCain as much different from Bush on either kneejerk hawkishness or superficial understanding.

On your point 4, immigration is not a principle concern of mine. I also fail to see how the president has much he can do here -- I expect this is much more Congress's bailiwick. I don't see any of the three candidates as being particularly xenophobic, nor particularly forward-thinking, so I think this one will remain fairly static no matter who wins.

bjkeefe
04-18-2008, 09:41 PM
BN:

At worst, the suggestion that he's boring is an ageist stereotype. More charitably, I'd guess you are reacting to the hero-hagiography of his campaign, which, of course, is rather boring

I think a Duoist is right about this: McCain is boring, and not just for the reasons you cite. I've watched him being interviewed, in debates, and giving speeches, and he always comes off the same: "My friends, mumble mumble, my friends, empty platitude, mumble mumble, vague homily about service, mumble mumble, my friends, mumble mumble."

In the few town-hall-style clips I've seen, he comes off better.

All that image aside, though, his policy ideas, to the extent that he has any, truly are boring. They really are nothing more than warmed-over GWB.

Wonderment
04-18-2008, 09:50 PM
His press corps clearly find the guy delightful on a personal level, and I doubt they would if he were truly boring. I understand he delights them with stories of his tomcat behavior and derring-do during his fighter jock days.

It may just be that the press corps is susceptible to good-old-boy war stories. It's interesting that the only flap we know about on his plane was with a female reporter, presumably less impressed by macho swagger.

That said, I don't think McCain is boring; he's too infuriating and dangerous to be boring.

brucds
04-18-2008, 09:54 PM
Since Glenn is my favorite Hillary-supporter, I was relieved that none of his arguments were compelling. At all. Among other things, the Presidency isn't a tenure track. And if she were as skilled and competent and experienced and smart as Glenn believes, she'd still be the front-runner. Also two words - "I-rack!"

look
04-18-2008, 10:11 PM
On the other hand her experiences have calcified her and her image. She is tough to be sure but her mindset is that of playing on side off of another ( triangulation ) and to rely on older american political tropes ( pandering ). She tries to beat the republicans and their own game and by using their rules, rules that have been laid down since the early 80's. Her white house experience is a plus to be sure but I feel that she was more of a voyeur to power (at least after the health care issue) as opposed to wielding it (I don't know enough about the fused clintonian coupling to know if this is truly the case). Looking at how things have progressed over time she seems more likely to react to changes as opposed to responding to them. That tendency given her popular image can be problematic.

Obama is more deft and more likely to be able to reframe debates as opposed to being caught up in them ( not perfect of course ).

One reason I voted for Obama was Hillary's past history, e.g., her handling of setting up a health care initiative. No matter how much knowledge she has, if she can't apply it properly, it's of no value. She is so hated by conservatives, and apparently alienated enough Dems who ended up supporting Obama, that I can foresee a very negative administration. As you note, I think Obama will be more relaxed and flexible and even if he doesn't accomplish much, I don't think she would either.

Here's a Tabbai article that predicts Hillary would have Nixonian bent...it's worth checking out just for the caricature of her.

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/story/18074823/the_new_nixon

brucds
04-18-2008, 10:42 PM
Glenn - if Hillary were as skilled, experienced and smart as you assume she is, she wouldn't be blowing the primaries. And if she were a trustworthy Democrat she wouldn't be making McCarthyite attacks on the guy who's gonna be facing off with John McCain.

Also, the presidency isn't a tenured position. As Hillary noted in re: both "white trash" and "Democratic activists", Screw her ! No tears. We're all gonna be better off.

Also, I'm a boomer and I'm so sick of "us." Overweening claims of entitlement aren't pretty.

Wonderment
04-18-2008, 10:45 PM
Also, I'm a boomer and I'm so sick of "us." Overweening claims of entitlement aren't pretty.

Didn't the boomers already have two presidents for the past 16 years?

AemJeff
04-18-2008, 10:46 PM
One reason I voted for Obama was Hillary's past history, e.g., her handling of setting up a health care initiative. No matter how much knowledge she has, if she can't apply it properly, it's of no value.

look, I can think of plenty of valid reasons to prefer Obama to Hillary; but blaming her for the failure of Hillary-care would be last on my list. The ferocity of the right-wing smear campaign directed against the initiative makes it really hard for me to believe that its ultimate failure ought to blamed on the planners.

harkin
04-18-2008, 10:51 PM
I feel like I should be payng for BHTV by the credit hour. :-D

There's an idea Bob, Bloggingheads Select - Frank Rich and Mo Dowd can tell you how to set it up.


Note to Glenn - the lady who is showing you such 'toughness' and is today telling Barack "If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen".....is the same woman who complained about being asked questions 'first' in debates and staked her chances in New Hampshire on the quality of her weeping.

bjkeefe
04-18-2008, 11:04 PM
brucds:

Since Glenn is my favorite Hillary-supporter, I was relieved that none of his arguments were compelling.

Good point. He did make an impassioned argument, but what it came down to in substance was mostly entitlement (she's worked her whole life for this) and "experience." To the latter, it's highly debatable how much she has, and to the extent that she has any, it's dubious that this should be allowed to equate to "accomplishments." I think she's experienced at playing the political game, and is well-informed and has thought a lot about policy issues, but I don't see how any of this translates into good leadership. Certainly, she has not demonstrated much of that lately.

bjkeefe
04-18-2008, 11:07 PM
look:

I love Matt Taibbi and frequently miss him since he doesn't have a dedicated RSS feed. Thanks for the link.

And you're right -- great caricature.

bjkeefe
04-18-2008, 11:11 PM
look, I can think of plenty of valid reasons to prefer Obama to Hillary; but blaming her for the failure of Hillary-care would be last on my list. The ferocity of the right-wing smear campaign directed against the initiative makes it really hard for me to believe that its ultimate failure ought to blamed on the planners.

You've got a point, Jeff, but I wouldn't excuse her completely, nor do I think it goes to the bottom of the list. The way that plan was hatched involved a lot of secrecy (or the perception thereof), there was no plan for selling it, and there was no preparation for what should have been recognized as the inevitable blowback. I grant that even I was staggered by both the ferocity of the attacks and how successful they were, but given that the Clinton '92 campaign had mastered the "War Room" principle, I wonder why that wasn't ready to be used again. I'll also agree that as an unauthorized party, HRC didn't have a whole lot she could do as far as selling and defending the plan, but since this is one of the centerpieces of her "experience" claim, I think it's legitimate to ask her to at least share the blame.

look
04-18-2008, 11:14 PM
look, I can think of plenty of valid reasons to prefer Obama to Hillary; but blaming her for the failure of Hillary-care would be last on my list. The ferocity of the right-wing smear campaign directed against the initiative makes it really hard for me to believe that its ultimate failure ought to blamed on the planners.

The story I've heard around is that the planning was very secretive, Republican input wasn't invited, it was very complicated, and it didn't pass in a Dem Congress (House?)

look
04-18-2008, 11:20 PM
look:

I love Matt Taibbi and frequently miss him since he doesn't have a dedicated RSS feed. Thanks for the link.

Yeah, he's evil.

Wonderment
04-18-2008, 11:24 PM
He also made the argument that gender trumps race.

look
04-18-2008, 11:30 PM
He also made the argument that gender trumps race.
It's an argument for another day, but I'll just ask, who got the right to vote first? Black men or women? 'Night.

bjkeefe
04-18-2008, 11:32 PM
It's an argument for another day, but I'll just ask, who got the right to vote first? Black men or women? 'Night.

In theory or in practice? (he asked rhetorically)

AemJeff
04-18-2008, 11:40 PM
"Last thing" might have been a little hyperbolic, but I'm grateful to her for at least trying. Putting the point a little more explicitly - I think the magnitude and competence of the push-back against Hillarycare makes assigning blame problematic.

AemJeff
04-18-2008, 11:49 PM
The story I've heard around is that the planning was very secretive, Republican input wasn't invited, it was very complicated, and it didn't pass in a Dem Congress (House?)

It's true. It was the Senate actually where the effort seems to have been lost - Moynihan particularly didn't seem to like the idea. I'm pretty sure that the Clintons felt blindsided by that. Still, the insurance industry and the Republicans mounted an amazingly well coordinated, multifaceted, at-all-cost-this-must-be-defeated pushback that was, of course ultimately successful. If Hillary, et al, could be faulted - and doubtlessly they share the blame - I'm still glad they made the effort.

bjkeefe
04-19-2008, 12:13 AM
"Last thing" might have been a little hyperbolic, but I'm grateful to her for at least trying. Putting the point a little more explicitly - I think the magnitude and competence of the push-back against Hillarycare makes assigning blame problematic.

Yeah, I can go along with that. However, while the campaign is still going on, I will not say so publicly.

Oh, wait.

brucds
04-19-2008, 12:42 AM
Tonight before 35,000 people in Philadelphia Barack said: "Her message comes down to this: We can't really change the say-anything, do-anything, special interest-driven game in Washington, so we might as well choose a candidate who really knows how to play it."

brucds
04-19-2008, 01:23 AM
He's famous. Here's James Wolcott on this estimable intellect:

"Unintentional humor is supplied by chronic commenter David Thomson, whose mini-diatribes always read as if they were written with a bayonet clenched between the teeth. It doesn't take much to set him off, the three bees in his bonnet--'Barry Obama;' white liberal guilt; and Harvard--creating a din in his head that can only be relieved with dark prophecies such as: 'An Obama presidency will relentlessly "stick it to whitey." ' "

brucds
04-19-2008, 01:28 AM
Thomson: "If Obama becomes our next president...our heads might explode."

bkjazfan
04-19-2008, 02:20 PM
Oh, I get the "Barry" bit, he used that name until he went back to Barak as an adult or something like that. No, I didn't read his books.

I do wonder too if a dyed in the wool liberal can be voted in as president. Supposedly his voting record is to the left of Kennedy. In the general election he will have to scramble more to the middle or else it would be difficult for him to win.

I wonder what percent of the population believes that the government has the solution to all our problems? If a high amount does then the dem should win.

John

thouartgob
04-19-2008, 02:57 PM
I do wonder too if a dyed in the wool liberal can be voted in as president. Supposedly his voting record is to the left of Kennedy. In the general election he will have to scramble more to the middle or else it would be difficult for him to win.

I wonder what percent of the population believes that the government has the solution to all our problems? If a high amount does then the dem should win.
John

I think it isn't that people think that govt. can fix ALL problems. Peoples lives are full of problems that no govt. is gonna fix. I think one of the major issues for people and their relationship to govt. Do voters understand or believe that they are the govt. to one extent or another (if you believe you are in a democratic republic) ? Either their votes count or they don't, either they are satisfied with what they are getting or they are not. That is not a govt. can fix all of your problems mindset per se that is a goods and services argument. That isn't a govt. isn't the only solution that is what am I in relationship to govt.

In the end both republicans and democrats, rich and not so rich get things from "public" sector just as they get things from the "private" sector. This brings up the argument of how much you think that "public" and "private" sectors are distinct entities and how much influence will you allow one or the other or both on your lives.

bkjazfan
04-19-2008, 06:03 PM
thouartgob,

You brought up some good points. You are probably more estute at politics than I am.

In the state of California where I live the government pretty much runs the schools, K-12. In the area of Los Angeles where I live all the middle and high schools are doing poorly. In fact, in a number of areas within the public domain the performance is less than average. Perhaps, I am simplistic but I think that before we add new government programs the ones we have should be improved then expand or add new ones.

Watching the 2 democrats for president debate sometimes gives me the impression that they are up there just to promise this, that, and the other "to the people."

Being a veteran I go to a vets hospital. Now, there is an institution that needs improvement. Luckily, my health is good and I don't expect much from them. I have already built a "low expectations outlook" in regards to healthcare. If I had a lot of money than it would be different.

I agree with your statement that the government can't fix all ones problems. Sometimes when talking to people I get the impression that they think it can. From my vantage point life is an inside game mostly and people should help themselves as much as they can. Also, the family should come before the government in regards to receiving aid. Unfortunately, the family is falling apart to some degree in the U.S. so people have to turn to Uncle Sam.

Thanks for your response.

John

David Thomson
04-19-2008, 08:04 PM
“He's famous. Here's James Wolcott on this estimable intellect”

James Wolcott at least spelled my name correctly. Sigh, the small things do count. I also noticed that Wolcott did not attempt to address any of the issues I raised. Such is life.

I should also add something to my previous distinction between hard and soft science degrees. In the harder variety 2+2=4 and that’s the end of it. It is only in the soft sciences where you might encounter idiots arguing that 2+2 equals 4 ---or 5,6, or whatever. Somehow if one is black, female, or some other sort of minority---you have the right to your “own truth.” There is occasionally some silly stuff going on in the hard sciences. At the end of the day, however, most of the idiots are graduates of the liberal arts. Please note that the late intellectual mediocrity Jacques Derrida was a philospher.

tmiller
04-20-2008, 06:27 PM
As a result of listening to this great diavlog I sent an email to Glenn Loury and received a gracious reply almost immediately. I am sharing the email exchange with you as he requested.

First my email:

Hello Professor Loury -

I just listened to your recent bloggingheads.tv discussion with John McWhorter with great interest. I have enjoyed many discussions in this series and enjoyed this particular dialog very much and as always I learned a great deal from the experience.

However, since I am sure that truth is important to you, I would like you to know some facts about the relationship between Barack Obama and William Ayers. You mentioned several times that Ayers is a 'personal friend' of Senator Obamas. Also you said that Barack has a 'personal relationship' and a [presumed] 'liking' for Mr. Ayers. None of this is the case, at least based on the known facts of their actual relationship, which probably cannot be called even a 'casual friendship' according to an article by Noam Schreiber.

http://blogs.tnr.com/tnr/blogs/the_stump/archive/2008/02/22/parsing-the-ayers-allegation.aspx

Many other newspapers and journalists have reached the same conclusions. A list of such references can be found at

http://factcheck.barackobama.com <http://factcheck.barackobama.com/> /

I feel, as you obviously do, that a person's character is to some extent indicated by the friendships that person has formed. Therefore it is important to know when a canard is being promulgated relative to a friendship which doesn't exist, especially in such an important matter as this.

Thanks for your attention.

Trudy Miller


and his reply:

Trudy Miller:

I really appreciate your e-mail. It appears that I have, unwittingly, been contributing to the propagation of false information about Senator Obama. (The sources you directed me to are unambiguous in support of your points regarding the nature of Barack Obama's relationship with Mr. William Ayers.) By way of further setting straight the record, I would urge you to post your correction on the www.bloggingheads.tv website.

Rest assured that I will NOT repeat those claims in the future. Thank you for writing me. Best, GL

bkjazfan
04-20-2008, 06:40 PM
Sean Hannity is going ballistic on this William Ayers deal. Frankly, I think it's much ado about nothing.

The Reverend Wright situation is different for me. Having sat through church services that dwell on such things that Wright does I don't know how Obama could stomach such nonsense for all the years he did. I know when it came up in services I went to I stopped going to the particular church it occurred in. Yes, I know it only happened sometimes but that would be enough for me.

John

bjkeefe
04-20-2008, 07:08 PM
Thanks for the effort, Trudy. And Glenn, if you're reading this, thanks to you, too.

Wonderment
04-20-2008, 07:49 PM
Kudos to Trudy for fact-checking and knowing how to reach out to Glenn without insulting him, and kudos to Glenn for quickly admitting publicly his mistake. That's a sign of a rare intellectual honesty that confirms my impression of Glenn as a wonderful human being.

On to Ayers: The problem for Obama is that the Repubs will be hitting him with the Wright-Ayers double whammy.

The argument will go that he knew that Ayers basically bragged about bombing the Pentagon (never mind the details, that's what they'll argue) and Obama stayed silent, even after 9/11. Wright denounced the US of KKK and gave an award to Farrakhan and Obama stayed silent. They will argue that Obama is comfortable around "traitors" and anti-American "racists."

I think it's good for Obama that this stuff is coming out now as opposed to later. He will be "vetted," as Hillary likes to say, before the general election. The bad news, however, is that the Wright video will never lose its "charm."
I agree that Wright is ultimately 10 tens as bad as Ayers for him, but Ayers helps reinforce the Wright message that Obama is a closet radical.

TwinSwords
04-20-2008, 08:00 PM
As a result of listening to this great diavlog I sent an email to Glenn Loury and received a gracious reply almost immediately. I am sharing the email exchange with you as he requested.

Nice work, Trudy! Kudos to you. And Kudos to Dr. Loury for his intellectual honesty and transparency.

Jim Pinkerton could learn a few things from both you and Glenn.

deebee
04-20-2008, 08:18 PM
EastWest: Especially right on was Glenn's very thorough explanation of why he still supports Hillary and why he does not support Obama, especially as regards: 1) Competence; 2) Experience; 3) Ability to Do All Things Political with a Sensitivity to Nuance.

I totally agree with this assessment -- and John's assertion that Obama is "good enough" is not good enough for me. With the multitude of extreme challenges at our doorstep that now includes global warming, a faltering economy and the prospect of worldwide social instability due to rising food costs, etc. how can we not want something more than a rookie Senator to lead the world?

bkjazfan
04-20-2008, 08:39 PM
David Ignatius of the Washington Post has an article today about why Obama has relationships with such characters as Jeremiah Wright and specifically Tony Resko. His conclusion is "he is loyal to a fault."

John

whalleywhat
04-25-2008, 01:51 PM
I liked the point they made about the difference between someone like Colin Powell winning the office of the President and someone with Barack Obama's life experience winning it. The success of making any sort of move towards healing the racial wound in America isn't to have a black President who is more like white people, and thus less scary, but to have a black President who is clearly connected to and aligned with the "black experience," thus proving that that's nothing to be afraid of.
John Stewart made the joke to Obama about "Promise you won't enslave the white race." Is that what people are, at the base of this, afraid of? Is it that it will become accepted that thinking the way a Jeremiah Wright thinks is alright? I don't understand.
As for Glenn's comments about the Hillary's war vote, I have a similar lack of understanding about people who claim it required some sort of foresight or prescience to be against the war before it started. The writing was on the wall amongst everyone I knew, and I can only assume it was the same for Hillary and in the circles she ran in. The entirety of her campaign has reinforced my notion that she approaches politics in a crass, "power broker" manner, where the ends justify such ridiculous means that the ends become confused and lost. Beyond that, while threatening to obliterate Iran and latching on to Republican talking points against your opponent is one thing, voting to authorize a war because you're fearful, for the sake of your political career, that you'll appear soft on National Security is something else entirely.

tarajane
04-29-2008, 11:14 AM
They are also my favorite pair. Reflecting their tone with each other, though I avidly support Hillary, I feel at my most generous toward Obama when I listen to their discussions.