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  #1  
Old 03-20-2008, 08:39 PM
Bloggingheads Bloggingheads is offline
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Default If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

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  #2  
Old 03-20-2008, 08:57 PM
Eastwest Eastwest is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Just finished listening to Glen Loury's initial "spiel" (his word).

He nailed it.

This just goes to show the correctness of Shelby Steele's most recent take wherein he points out that there is an implicit "deal" inherent in the Obamaphiles agreeing to be bought out of their white guilt, but only in return for Obama not being a "challenger" (in the mold of say Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton), but rather instead agreeing to be one willing to "pass" so-to-speak by remaining largely agreeable and two-dimensional.

I knew that if Obama was allowed to have to keep campaigning after Texas and Ohio, he was almost certainly bound to allow his third dimension to surface. (This is the so-called "kryptonite" of Black anger which he seemed only barely able to contain in his speech, having toned it down to sanctimonious sermonization mode.)

EW

Last edited by Eastwest; 03-20-2008 at 09:42 PM..
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  #3  
Old 03-20-2008, 09:40 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eastwest View Post
Just finished listening to Glen Loury's initial "spiel" (his word).

He nailed it.

This just goes to show the correctness of Shelby Steele's most recent take wherein he points out that there is an implicit "deal" inherent in the Obamaphiles agreeing to be bought out of their white guilt, but only in return for Obama not being a "challenger" (in the mold of say Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton), but rather instead one willing to "pass" so-to-speak by remaining largely agreeable and two-dimensional.

I knew that if Obama was allowed to have to keep campaigning after Texas and Ohio, he was almost certainly bound to allow his third dimension to surface. (This is the so-called "kryptonite" of Black anger which he seemed only barely able to contain in his speak, having toned it down to sanctimonious sermonization mode.)

EW
EW:

I must respectfully and in a cool-headed mode -note no Black anger here- disagree with your characterization of the "speak" (sic) as sanctimonious and a sermon. It's funny how we seemingly speak and understand the same language yet, what I heard as brave and inspiring you hear as the exact opposite. I also view him as nearly diametrically opposed to Sharpton and Jackson.
Any chance we can meet in the middle of the compass?

Last edited by graz; 03-20-2008 at 09:51 PM..
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  #4  
Old 03-20-2008, 10:00 PM
Eastwest Eastwest is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

RE: GRAZ's

Quote:
disagree with your characterization of the "speak" (sic) as sanctimonious and a sermon. Its funny how we seemingly speak and understand the same language yet, what I heard as brave and inspiring you hear as the exact opposite.
Oh, I believe it was "brave" (but perhaps suicidal).

I can also see why some would find it "inspiring."

Still, listen to Loury's "spiel" again and closely. Obama finally had his stratagem blow up on him, got into trouble on account of it, and chooses to try and get out of his trouble with this lecture.

(BTW, you may care to watch and listen to Obama's speech again at some point: mostly unsmiling, stern, nearly monotonol compared to his usual style, thumping the podium over, and over, and over. Fine, an important and useful speech which perhaps might have had a place after his election to the presidency.

But frankly he was talking down to his audience, not quite with a set jaw, like a mildly peeved professor, to students in need of instruction.

In short, the right speech, but given at the wrong time on the wrong occasion, and for the wrong reasons.

EW

Last edited by Eastwest; 03-20-2008 at 10:07 PM..
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  #5  
Old 03-20-2008, 10:16 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

EW:

I going to give you the benefit of the doubt and acknowledge that you really believe this "reading of the events." But, I have to say that you seem to be reading to much into an interpretation based on "style points." Let both the words alone and then the actual viewing speak for themselves. This reprises an earlier debate yesterday between Bob and Mickey.

Mickey:" The speech was a disaster."

Bob:" Well since it was so well received by so many, your analysis might be off the mark"

Alsworth coined the name - Kausmind - to explain an interpretation that flies in the face of reason and facts.

I hope it is not contagious.

Peace
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  #6  
Old 03-21-2008, 09:10 AM
Bloggin' Noggin Bloggin' Noggin is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
This just goes to show the correctness of Shelby Steele's most recent take wherein he points out that there is an implicit "deal" inherent in the Obamaphiles agreeing to be bought out of their white guilt, but only in return for Obama not being a "challenger" (in the mold of say Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton), but rather instead agreeing to be one willing to "pass" so-to-speak by remaining largely agreeable and two-dimensional.
Apparently there were some white people who answered polls a few weeks ago that they would vote for Obama who now answer polls saying that they won't. As far as I'm aware it's a few percentage points so far.
Most of these people were probably not "Obamaphiles" in any meaningful sense -- the level of support indicated by the poll is just that you would be inclined to pick Obama over the other person if the election were held today. NOT an indication of real support.
What then is the evidence that white "Obamaphiles" are abandoning him in droves because they wanted him to be black without being black? I count myself as even more of an Obamaphile after that speech.

As for the lack of table thumping, let me let you in on a little secret of oratory: it is possible to match one's tone and demeanor to the occasion and to the words one is actually speaking. Obama understands this -- one of those (to you) mysterious elements of his oratorical appeal. Besides people like you would surely have capitalized on his resemblance to Jeremiah Wright if he had thumped the table. There's no way Obama can win with you -- that's clear enough. Fortunately he doesn't have to win you over. I just hope he can get a majority of the voting electorate in November
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  #7  
Old 03-21-2008, 03:32 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
There''s no way Obama can win with you -- that's clear enough. Fortunately he doesn't have to win you over. I just hope he can get a majority of the voting electorate in November.
Well, that's the big question, of course. How much will this hurt him in November? And if he seriously tanks in polls, Hillary could have a case before November.

This is a polarizing event.

Obama supporters, like those of us who post on Bheads, will be more deeply committed to him because we now see him as under attack by the bigots of Fox News, etc.

Obama opponents will see the specter of Wright behind his every word, have their prejudice against his wife reinforced, and mistrust him henceforth.

Will the election be decided by undereducated "independents" who are so out of touch that they're susceptible to the most subliminal fear inducing ads? Obama the Muslim didn't work. But Obama the covert Black Panther may. Stay tuned.
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  #8  
Old 03-21-2008, 03:42 PM
brucds brucds is offline
 
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Default Sorry Elvis

That comment was the one above yours - from "duoist."
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  #9  
Old 03-21-2008, 03:54 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
Well, that's the big question, of course. How much will this hurt him in November? And if he seriously tanks in polls, Hillary could have a case before November.

This is a polarizing event.

Obama supporters, like those of us who post on Bheads, will be more deeply committed to him because we now see him as under attack by the bigots of Fox News, etc.

Obama opponents will see the specter of Wright behind his every word, have their prejudice against his wife reinforced, and mistrust him henceforth.

Will the election be decided by undereducated "independents" who are so out of touch that they're susceptible to the most subliminal fear inducing ads? Obama the Muslim didn't work. But Obama the covert Black Panther may. Stay tuned.
Stay tuned indeed.
It is almost as if they planned to leave us hanging on for more when at the end of the diavlog Glenn was unable to respond to John's question about why he still endorses Clinton?
Taking Wonderment's point about a Clinton resurrection to its extreme, can most Obama supporters make the jump?

And now if you will excuse the paranoid fantasy... Did the interference that John and Glenn were experiencing on their phone line raise any red flags? Party lines do not exist anymore do they? What kind of technology do the bhtv'ers use to connect?
Ok - here is the fantasy part - The lines were infiltrated by the same operatives who breeched Obama's passport files.
Just kidding, but does anyone think that either of these things was weird or possibly nefarious?
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  #10  
Old 03-21-2008, 05:51 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

graz:

Quote:
Stay tuned indeed.
It is almost as if they planned to leave us hanging on for more when at the end of the diavlog Glenn was unable to respond to John's question about why he still endorses Clinton?
My very thought, when that moment occurred. This suggests that it was Bob Wright who was jamming the call. And I bet we'll have to sit through commercials before we get to see Part 2.
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  #11  
Old 03-21-2008, 06:24 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
Originally Posted by bjkeefe View Post
graz:
My very thought, when that moment occurred. This suggests that it was Bob Wright who was jamming the call. And I bet we'll have to sit through commercials before we get to see Part 2.
And I'll bet that Bob will make us sit through another slog with Mickey before the pleasure of Loury/McWhorter. Maybe Bob isn't a nice man after all.
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  #12  
Old 03-21-2008, 06:46 PM
uncle ebeneezer uncle ebeneezer is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

My first thought was that Glen was just trying to avoid answering the question. Then I thought maybe John's arguments had been so strong that Glen was feeling doubt and considering switching to Obama. Then I remembered the technical difficulties they had been having throughout.

Your theory of "Bob interrupting" is more interesting.

When it's all said and done, this speech HAS prompted a discussion (at least with people of the BH mentality who LIKE discussion) so that's a pretty good thing.

Happy Friday!!
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  #13  
Old 03-21-2008, 06:58 PM
brucds brucds is offline
 
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Default What would Jesus say ?

Yeah, I'm not up to the "Jesus" standard. I'll let him speak for himself. Meanwhile, I refuse to suffer fools lightly, i.e the hypocrites feigning hysteria over this - or who willfully and malevolently refuse to engage Obama's speech with even minimal standards of honesty and intellect.

bjkeefe - I'm an arrogant asshole but I'm not sure I'm up to the "political consultant" standard...yet.
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  #14  
Old 03-21-2008, 07:05 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: What would Jesus say ?

brucds:

Quote:
bjkeefe - I'm an arrogant asshole but I'm not sure I'm up to the "political consultant" standard...yet.
Don't forget: every campaign needs a few attack dogs. You could be the one that goes on Fox and forces Bill O'Reilly to cut your mike.
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  #15  
Old 03-21-2008, 07:10 PM
uncle ebeneezer uncle ebeneezer is offline
 
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Default Re: Good Friday

An interesting and entertaining post from Charles Pierce via Eric Alterman's blog:

For those of us of the Papist persuasion, Good Friday services always came as two hours of existential dread. Purple swatches all over the sanctuary. Gloomy hymns. Latin intoned with an extra-special kind of lugubrious Lugosiness. More to the point of the past week, the Good Friday liturgy was a carnival of anti-Semitism, an extended exercise in Jew-bashing so egregious that even the Vatican came to notice it several centuries on. Now, I know I sat through this. I know Russert, and Matthews, and Maureen Dowd, and Pat Buchanan -- and JFK and John Kerry, as well -- also did. This wasn't the improvised rhetoric of one pastor in one church. This was the formalized celebration of Christ's Passion, performed in exactly the same way in front of millions of people in thousands of churches all over the world. So here's the thing, Mo and Tim and Chris. (I leave out Buchanan because, hell, he probably thinks the liturgy was too diverse.) Did sitting through this make you anti-Semitic? And to what degree? And have you ever rejected and renounced 2,000 years of popes -- to say nothing of the church over which they presided -- because they authorized this dangerous thooleramawnery? if you haven't, you should probably lay off Barack Obama and his minister, is all's I'm saying.
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  #16  
Old 03-21-2008, 07:21 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: Good Friday

Nasty LIEbruls through MSM and Pope under the bus!!!11!
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  #17  
Old 03-21-2008, 08:56 PM
January January is offline
 
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Default Best Diavlog ever!

Please bring these two thoughtful gentleman on as many times as they are willing to talk.

Like John, I've been wholly saddened by the response to Obama's speech. Some whites seem to be shocked to find out that not all has been forgiven in the black community. I can live with Obama's candidacy failing because he may not be as skillful as the other guy. But if it fails because whites can't get past their own self-admiration at having gotten past racism, I won't blame black voters for staying home in disgust, come this November.
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  #18  
Old 03-22-2008, 12:21 PM
bkjazfan bkjazfan is offline
 
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Default Re: Good Friday

As a lapsed catholic it didn't make me anti-semitic but I did find it to be dull and boring. Oh, I think Pat Buchanan is happy since the Latin Mass has been approved by the new pope. The traditional catholics as they like to be called attend these services.
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  #19  
Old 03-23-2008, 03:56 AM
laurelnyc laurelnyc is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
Originally Posted by graz View Post
Stay tuned indeed.
It is almost as if they planned to leave us hanging on for more when at the end of the diavlog Glenn was unable to respond to John's question about why he still endorses Clinton?
Taking Wonderment's point about a Clinton resurrection to its extreme, can most Obama supporters make the jump?

And now if you will excuse the paranoid fantasy... Did the interference that John and Glenn were experiencing on their phone line raise any red flags? Party lines do not exist anymore do they? What kind of technology do the bhtv'ers use to connect?
Ok - here is the fantasy part - The lines were infiltrated by the same operatives who breeched Obama's passport files.
Just kidding, but does anyone think that either of these things was weird or possibly nefarious?
Uhm, yes, you're PARANOID!!!! Btw, Obama's files weren't the only ones which were breeched. All three candidates' were breeched so - NO CONSPIRACY!

One other thing that not many talk about is that many Clinton supporters will not be able to make the jump to support Obama either so both Dems are screwed (both Obama & Clinton camps did their parts in slandering each other and the fans/supporters were happy to go along with the lies). Btw, I am a Clinton supporter who initially liked Obama, but for many reasons (long before Wright issue), I decided that there is no way that I'll ever vote for Obama. And from the talk of Obama fans, I hear similar things about Clinton, which is why I've resigned to the fact that POTUS #44 = McCain.

I will say that one thing that turned me off Obama is the hatefulness of some of his fans (not here on BHtv). I'm continually amused that the candidate of "hope & unity" has some of the most divisive fans I've ever known in my short political life (essentially 2 elections). The last time I faced this type of hatefulness was when I was a Kerry fan talking with a Bush fan. Maybe all political elections brings this side out of people. I guess I'll know one day. I'm sooooooo sick of this whole race that by now I'm almost relieved that neither Obama nor Clinton will be POTUS because if either wins, this Dem in-fighting will last for another 4 years, especially with the whole FL/MI controversy.
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  #20  
Old 03-23-2008, 12:10 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Laurelnyc:

Yes that is why I followed paranoid with fantasy. I was just hoping to start a thread about privacy and remark on the coincidence of the interruption of the diavlog. And tie it in with the Clinton vs. Obama compatability issue.

Thanks for playing along, I have to go take my meds now.
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  #21  
Old 03-23-2008, 01:23 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

laurelnyc:

Quote:
One other thing that not many talk about is that many Clinton supporters will not be able to make the jump to support Obama either so both Dems are screwed ...
I don't agree. Sure, there will be some supporters of both candidates who will retain their sour grape attitude through November, but overwhelmingly most will eventually cool off, at least to the extent of being able to hold their noses to vote against the worse choice.

Quote:
I will say that one thing that turned me off Obama is the hatefulness of some of his fans (not here on BHtv). I'm continually amused that the candidate of "hope & unity" has some of the most divisive fans I've ever known ...
Don't miss the forest for the trees, is all I can say to this. Passions run high in any election, and those with the loudest and most extreme voices tend to get the most attention in any slice of life. I would also say it's just as much of a canard to think that the occasional expression of negativity, particularly by someone not even involved with the campaign, somehow completely refutes the genuineness of Obama's message. And finally, it's not as though we haven't heard the occasional bit of hysteria from Clinton supporters, nor is it as though the Clinton campaign itself hasn't indulged in its own share of attack politics.

Quote:
I'm sooooooo sick of this whole race that by now I'm almost relieved that neither Obama nor Clinton will be POTUS because if either wins, this Dem in-fighting will last for another 4 years, especially with the whole FL/MI controversy.
You think losing the election is going to make the Dems all join hands? As someone with a bit more experience watching the circular firing squad in action, I can only say that there is a singular lack of evidence to support this idea. And it is always useful to keep in mind what Will Rogers said.
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  #22  
Old 03-23-2008, 01:59 PM
bkjazfan bkjazfan is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Laurelnyc,

In one of the previous diavlogs between Glenn and John both admitted that talking about race is getting to be "old hat." Glenn in particular noted his college students aren't as receptive to this type of discussion as they were in prior days.

I am glad they brought up the point of Hispanics so that it is no longer a dialog about whites and blacks. Having lived in Los Angeles almost my entire life where Hispanics are at least 40% of the population I know first hand how this is the case.

At 60 years of age I am tired of talking about race. Personally, my interests tend to lean more in the economic, education, and political science fields. Oh, and I love to read fiction whether it's hard boiled mysteries or classics.

Anyhow, thanks for posting.
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  #23  
Old 03-25-2008, 04:56 PM
mpg77 mpg77 is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

I wonder, do you think the event was polarizing -- or do you think it revealed a division that was already there? I personally don't think many people interpreted this event through new lenses. Note how many Obama opponents brought up Farrakhan, Sharpton, Jackson, and hating America. It's not reasoning, it's parroting.

I'm sure Obama supporters are doing the same. I just can't see that as clearly as it doesn't seem to be as catchphrasy.
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  #24  
Old 03-25-2008, 08:10 PM
harkin harkin is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Earth to Glenn, Barack not only didn't 'break off' from his Pastor, he sat there and refrained from even challenging him. Is that the kind of leadership you want in a Presidential candidate?

If Barack Obama truly WAS NOT equating his grandmother with Rev Wright, why did he use them in the same context in his speech (disownership)? He clearly was using his own grandmother to soften the harshness of Wright's invective, which was both ridiculous and shameless.

The most hilarious part of Glenn's misdirection here is that people who have a problem with Obama's speech are expressing 'fury'. No Glenn, not fury, just calling out a candidate who has put himself forward as the leader of unity but who never once thought to call out his own Pastor for spreading racist hate.

Congratulations Barack for maintaining your 'intimacy' with someone who was spouting conspiratorial racist rants yet never once (or at least until your candidacy was threatened) having the nerve to express an opinion on them.

Lastly, I hope no one here thinks I'm disagreeing with Glenn just because I am a 'typical white' man.
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Old 03-25-2008, 08:30 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

[QUOTE=harkin;

Lastly, I hope no one here thinks I'm disagreeing with Glenn just because I am a 'typical white' man.[/QUOTE]

No, the reason why I think you are disagreeing with Glenn is that you have not acquainted yourself with a fair assessment of the facts in question. As many times as you claim that Wright is guilty of charges that most would not concede, or attribute motives to Obama that have not been entered into evidence, you simply do not have a case... just a rant
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  #26  
Old 03-26-2008, 02:35 AM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

harkin:

Quote:
Lastly, I hope no one here thinks I'm disagreeing with Glenn just because I am a 'typical white' man.
I hope not, too. I would hate to think the typical white person is as misguided and clueless about race as you are. And don't try to deny it. The fact that you're still obsessing about one line in a speech, a week later, gives you away.

The truth is, people like you are delighted to have this Wright issue to gnaw on. Gives you cover for all those racist things you've been wanting to say for so long.
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  #27  
Old 03-25-2008, 04:52 PM
mpg77 mpg77 is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

This is not true of everyone, but my clearest and most pointed remarks come when I get a little "fired up." In my opinion, the deal is that whites want to keep benefitting from something we never dismantled -- a racially imbalanced social structure -- but also be told that actually it's not *that* disadvantageous. That's the only way that Rice, Powell, and (I fear) Obama can be understood as American instead of "black." It actually doesn't matter how eloquent, educated, Christian, or talented one is: When a black person looks at the evidence s/he is supposed to conclude "whatever I'm seeing can't be racist." I say from experience that to say otherwise suddenly wipes out all those credentials that got me in the door in the first place-- the college degree, the poise, the austere sexuality, frugal spending, the guarded tongue and rigidly perfect English. I've been cast out of more than one organization and called stupid because I mentioned that their real goal was to integrate black people into the instutition the way it always had been while they were saying blacks were too stupid, lazy, and immoral to join.

The accusation of being "angry" has nothing to do with word choice or tone; it has to do with white fear that the overdue reckoning might be here. I don't blame them, the majority of whites have never been in a position secure enough to risk their own money and status. I would hope that would make them angry enough at corporate elites to join with angry black people.

Here's to the audacity of that hope!
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  #28  
Old 03-20-2008, 09:02 PM
cjsmith cjsmith is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

First off, these guys are both excellent. Maybe the best pairing on the site right now imo.

On Glenn's point towards the beginning where he lists the litany of episodes where the Clinton camp directly or indirectly was accused of racist stuff--e.g. Bill saying Obama is just like Jesse Jackson, Hillary's comment on LBJ vs. MLK, Geraldine Ferraro, etc.

I think he is right that those did get overblown in terms of race. But he misses a deeper point I think. I was very angry at those comments (I'm white if that info is important) not due to the racial element per se but because it was so dismissive of his candidacy period. It is part of Hillary having run as the inevitable candidate who deserves the nomination. She thinks it's her time and can not understand why someone like me wouldn't support her campaign.

So Bill says Obama's position on Iraq is a fairy tale. Ferraro says the country is caught up in a concept. As I see it, the Clintons just can't seem to grasp that he has (to date) run a much more disciplined, better organized campaign, has a better message, frankly is a better politician than her imo.

Now when that establishment mindset I think comes across from the Clinton camp, the fact that they are white and he is black and they seem to be saying in no uncertain terms, "wait your turn/it's not your time", then I take Glenn's point, but how does that not come off (in terms of the optics) as racial? Again I'm not saying it is intended as such, but I can't see how it doesn't appear that way nonetheless.
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  #29  
Old 03-20-2008, 10:04 PM
Jay J Jay J is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

I suppose John could be right about the reaction of many white people to this recent Rev. Wright mess. Clinton and McCain both lead Obama nationwide for the first time.

If anyone was interested in Barack Obama because he was black in the first place, then they were building on a sandy foundation. What I mean is that it's not the best reason to begin with. As for me, I don't care that so many black people support Obama, or that some hypothetical white leftists support him because he's got black skin, I support Obama because I happen to think that he's the best candidate. There are many reasons I believe this, but it can be summarized by saying that he's the best candidate in the field, nothing more, nothing less.

If this recent mess is what's changed people's minds, then that will be very disheartening.

I'm not as forgiving as many on the hard left, meaning I think it was important for Obama to at least say that he disagreed with Rev. Wright's comments (at least the most incendiary ones). Once he did that, it was enough for me.

I'm also not too big on having a big conversation about what I as a white person need to do. My views are pretty close to Obama's, not because of what I think about black people or race relations in America, but rather because of what I think about people in general.

I sympathize with the predicament people have in finding spiritual homes for themselves and their families, and that sometimes leaving this place because of this or that political stance will be to trade in all the spiritual benefits gained from membership. Not all churches are equally equipped to provide what each family needs...different strokes for different folks.

This is why I'm usually pretty hands-off with people and what church they belong to, whether it's seen as black or white, left-wing or right-wing. What they do in the world is more important to me.

And none of this has anything to do with needing to have a nuanced understanding of the roots of Rev. Wright's frustration in order to say that he went overboard, and that I wish for my President to not revel in attitudes which can be expressed by the words "God Damn America." So long as Obama doesn't agree with that tone, that's enough for me, then it's not all that important to me any more what Jeremiah Wright thinks.

Last edited by Jay J; 03-20-2008 at 10:31 PM..
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  #30  
Old 03-20-2008, 10:13 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Happy Good Friday!

This was a really brilliant dialogue on many levels -- so many insights into this disturbing controversy. I wish John and Glenn were getting the millions of downloads that the Wright soundbites are.

As long as we're indulging in the Christian metaphors, the Jeremiah Wright controversy -- which I'm guessing will sooner or later destroy Obama's chance of getting elected president -- strikes me as an obscene right-wing crucifixion story.

The right wing wouldn't rest until they could find a way to transform Obama into a subversive enemy of the Empire, to make the story a racial narrative, to pull a Willie Horton out of the Internet ether and discredit Obama. Where's the crazy black dude? Where's OJ? Where's Rodney King? Oh there he is: Jeremiah Goddamnamerica Wright.

Of course, this is a double crucifixion. Rev. Wright also gets hung up on the cross. It's worse for him, since everyone in the MSM has vilified him, including all the Obama supporters.
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  #31  
Old 03-20-2008, 10:37 PM
StillmanThomas StillmanThomas is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

This is one of the best diavlogs I've ever seen on BHTV. I love Dr. Loury, although his (to me) somewhat cynical support for Hillary Clinton has bothered me a bit. A few months ago he was dismissive of Barack Obama, saying in effect, "I'm supporting the adults" in this primary fight. It's good to see that he's finally coming to appreciate Obama's brilliance and uniqueness, even if he's not going to switch his support.

All of this blather about race is understandable I suppose, but frustrating nonetheless. I'm a white male in my late 50s. I remember when Jimi Hendrix came on the scene, I was absolutely floored by his talent. He was electrifying, a genius, who took guitar playing to a level never before seen or heard. Did I love him because he was black? Not at all. In spite of the fact that he was black? Not that I know of. I loved his music! It's as simple as that. I knew that I was hearing something that I had never heard before, and I couldn't turn away.

Some years later, Stevie Ray Vaughan came on the scene, and in some ways, played better than Hendrix. But he got there by imitating Hendrix! It took me awhile to understand where he was coming from, but again, I loved his music, heard something I had never heard before. Was it because he was white? Not at all. When you close your eyes and surrender to the music, it doesn't matter what color he was.

That's the way I feel, and have always felt about Obama. I'm hearing something from him, a virtuosity, that I've never heard before. I love his music. I don't care what color he is. I know that Bessie Smith's blackness informed her music, but it's her music that I love. So, Obama's black-whiteness informs his genius. But so what? I'm not a musicologist, I'm a music lover.

So, gentlemen, with all due respect and a love for you both, can't we all just shut up about race, close our eyes and listen to the music? It's magnificent!
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Last edited by StillmanThomas; 03-20-2008 at 10:41 PM..
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  #32  
Old 03-20-2008, 10:47 PM
Jay J Jay J is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Man, and I thought I was post-racial. Next to you I'm a Critical Race Theorist.

BTW, that line,

"I'm not a musicologist, I'm a music lover,"

I love that.
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  #33  
Old 03-20-2008, 10:48 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Bokonon:
Thanks for the reminder. Jimi or Stevie?
Your right, no need to argue, just listen... sweet music indeed.
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  #34  
Old 03-21-2008, 12:13 AM
Glaurunge Glaurunge is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

To be honest, this seems like one big contrived controversy to me. It's almost unbelievable how obtuse so many right wingers are. When you try asking what exactly Obama's pastor said that was so abhorent, they either can't articulate anything specific, or they say something completely untrue such as "he believes in black supremacy." Thus, I think they object to the style of Wright more than anything else. He seems to be very flamboyant and animated in his sermons, and I think a lot of Americans just can't comprehend that other varieties and flavors of Christianity manifest themselves in different ways from one cultural group to the next.

They also seem to conflate Wright's acknowledgment of racism's mere existense in America with some kind of ant-white black seperatism that is itself racist. Racism exists whether we like to admit it or not. Refusing to ignore that fact doesn't make one "divisive" or "racially charged" in any way, shape or form. It's a factual statement, albeit one that Wright choose to express in a very colourful way.

The worst are the Fox News types who can't get it through their thick troglodyte skulls that a society with legally enshrined racism for a hundred years would likely reflect those same racist values in their churches. They'll ask, "But what if John McCain belonged to a white church?" The fact is, again whether one wants to acknowledge it or not, that America is a basically white society, and institutions like churches reflect that society. So there is no need to identify any church as "white." Doing so would be redundant because "white" is already the default setting to begin with. Therfore, explicitly advertising a church's whiteness can only be for the purpose of emphasizing white exclusivity. However the same is not true of black churches.

Admittedly, Wright's statment about AIDS was crazy but not out of the bounds usually aforded to religious ideas about science. Again, this is why I think the "controversy" is more about style than substance. We do after all have a President who doesn't believe in evolution and wants "both sides" taught in schools. But if one doesn't believe in evolution then AIDS couldn't have arisen by means of natural selection, in which case it might indeed seem reasonable to suspect it had an "intelligent" human designer, right?
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  #35  
Old 03-21-2008, 12:55 AM
beve83 beve83 is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

I love John and Glen's diavlogs! I'm sending this viral! Talk about an adult conversation that really looks to the hear of whats "uncomfortable" to talk about in regards to race. You guys are great, I hope you do more.
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  #36  
Old 03-21-2008, 05:24 AM
benjy benjy is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Much as I love Bob and Mickey and their loving banter, Mickey should be forced to listen to and ponder this diavlog--the quality of this discussion is just so much higher than Bob and Mickey's analysis yesterday. Of course if we were discussing evolutionary psychology Bob would be in his element and if Mickey were discussing....what exactly is Mickey's element again? I would just point out that if Mickey or anyone else is so caught up on a line about Obama's grandmother, etc. and whether he's equating her statements with Wright's (which he clearly isn't as pointed out in this diavlog) or how could Obama not repudiate Wright for expressing anger in such a way, they're missing the depth of Obama's speech and not, either through lack of effort or lack of ability, sufficiently understanding where the feelings behind Wright's words are coming from--not to justify Wright's statements, and clearly in the ones we've seen played over and over he's being a demagogue and saying things for shock value...and clearly some of his statements aren't supported by evidence and aren't more than far-fetched conspiracy theories stated as fact, and he should be more careful in a public forum and given the influence he has over especially the younger members of his church. But as Glenn expressed in the diavlog, clearly there are many things wrong with America and that we have done wrong, and its a shame that because Wright expressed them sometimes unartfully we can't discuss the facts all the same--if someone can't admit that there are problems and injustices in America as everywhere they're simply wilfully blind, and while politically statements like those made by Wright are suicide, a discussion of America's ills and wrongs is a discussion of simple fact. But of course as Barack said in his speech there are also many things right with America--of course in any country there's good and bad mixed together, but that's so obvious it surely doesn't have to be stated on Bloggingheads comments, yet of course continues to be a controversial statement out in some parts of the world (really abroad most of our wrongs are caused by us having too much power, not whether Americans are somehow worse or better people than others, but I digress) And we aren't voting for Wright for president, and Obama doesn't say things like this--what we're talking about is how could Obama (and why should we) at least understand where the sentiments and anger are coming from...and as Obama often talks about, what it really comes down to at the end of the day is whether we make an honest attempt, as flawed and often self-centered human beings, to apply the golden rule. Of course this is extremely difficult, and probably none of us is perfect at it, maybe not even St. Obama himself But Ashley's wanting to help her mother in her nine year old way and the man who said he was "here because of Ashley" is such a moving story precisely because its an expression of the golden rule, which is what at its best is what's at the heart of Obama's candidacy, and is where we start on any issues of fairness and caring and love (gets me every time ) But on average, at this point at least, and just as John hated to say it so do I, (and I would qualify it that there are always exceptions and more open or closed-minded people in any socioeconomic group, and downstate Illinois and in Iowa etc. there were clearly many exceptions and there will be hopefully even more in the future), but demographically it is an issue of education level and political views as to which whites understand and empathize with what Obama was saying in his speech and are more open to the types of arguments and nuance in general in understanding complex issues. It sure would be nice if people were smart enough to discuss things as adults on a truly deep and complex level, but as John and Glenn said we'll have to see how this plays out. But don't be too depressed, John--Kristof's and Cohen's piece as well as the Times' editorial were all great, and there's a huge group of people out there who care and were greatly moved by Obama's speech, as we have been so many times before....this is what I really care about about Obama--when he talks about things on a deeper level--when you say its as if the speech were written by God, its true that when someone has a gift you're basically seeing God through that person or their deeds (I say this as an atheist, but I speak metaphorically for myself) And what's interesting when you've followed Obama long enough, its not in the least surprising that he wrote the speech so quickly and it was great--he's basically just putting down the core of himself on paper, and he knows himself so well and has written about himself and his thoughts and development so extensively that its surely fairly easy for him to write the speech he gave this week--he's done the work for it his whole life, so the work this week is just organization, phrasing, which points to make or leave out and how, etc... And also John, don't think that all whites (or hopefully even most, although I have no data beyond my fairly homogenous anectdotal evidence) only like Barack when he's transcending race--what happened this week and Barack's speech and the discussion, at least the deeper level discussion, which has ensued is far more interesting to me than hearing Fired Up, Ready to Go for the ten-thousandth time--any complexity and going deeper into issues is always satisfying, and if we really do it, healing. Not that I'm perfect either of course, but anyway this weeks events absolutely make me feel more connected not less to Obama. Anyway, John and Glenn you are both so smart, its such a pleasure to listen to your discussions--its just so satisfying to hear arguments made so well and fully fleshed out and explored in depth, and language used so well in service of those arguments and a true dialogue... One slight criticism I've had recently of the political discussions is what I've considered an excess of inside the beltway type discussion and too few diavlogs discussing the underlying moral, philosophical, cultural, etc. issues that go deeper into the issues and why they're important--as Barack puts it, not only how to win an election, but why one side or the other should (he says why WE should of course) Alright, as I stay up far too late listening to diavlogs (you guys are hurting my sleeping schedule!!), I'll just say thank you again, and hope I didn't make too many typos
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  #37  
Old 03-21-2008, 11:33 AM
Thus Spoke Elvis Thus Spoke Elvis is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
Originally Posted by benjy View Post
Much as I love Bob and Mickey and their loving banter, Mickey should be forced to listen to and ponder this diavlog--the quality of this discussion is just so much higher than Bob and Mickey's analysis yesterday.
I preferred John and Glenn's diavlog to Mickey and Bob's as well. But in defense of Mickey, the diavlogs were approaching the speech from two different perspectives. John and Glenn were analyzing the speech from an intellectual perspective, discussing the merit of the ideas it raises and postulating why the people from different backgrounds would have different reactions to it. Mickey and Bob, on the other hand, focused primarily on the speech's political implications. Mickey himself said he thought it was in many ways a great speech, and I'm guessing he'd agree with much of John and Glenn's intellectual analysis. But his argument was that it would not be a politically effective speech -- an opinion McWhorter, at least, appears to share.
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  #38  
Old 03-21-2008, 02:23 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Re: If Obama Wasn't Black Before, He Sure Is Now

Quote:
It's almost unbelievable how obtuse so many right wingers are. When you try asking what exactly Obama's pastor said that was so abhorent, they either can't articulate anything specific, or they say something completely untrue such as "he believes in black supremacy."
There's nothing there, but the right-wing media has every progressive in America apologizing for nothing and shunning Wright. After reviewing every sermon every taped, they've come up with one dumb comment about AIDS. Period.
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  #39  
Old 03-20-2008, 11:14 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Glenn's final question

The hope.

My response: More than worthy, Glenn. Whether you and John are polarized on a topic or running in parallel, I always find your diavlogs instructive. Not to mention enjoyable.

Regarding this one specifically, there's a difference between being in agreement and just agreeing with each other. In the first case, there is still the opportunity for a lot of ideas to be brought forth. That's what you all did.
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  #40  
Old 03-21-2008, 02:58 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default "God damn, America!"

"God didn't call America to engage in a senseless, unjust war. . . . And we are criminals in that war. We've committed more war crimes almost than any nation in the world, and I'm going to continue to say it. And we won't stop it because of our pride and our arrogance as a nation. But God has a way of even putting nations in their place."

Martin Luther King, Jr., Feb. 4, 1968

As quoted by EJ Dionne in today's WPost.
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