Thursday, January 31, 2008
This should raise a red flag with voters about what else is out there about the Clintons that could come to light in the future.This and other potential scandals could put in jeopardy the Democratic Party's chances of winning the presidency in November if Hillary Clinton ends up being the nominee? And does this latest allegation about Bill Clinton underscore the slime ball track record of the Clinton's political dealings in general?
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Where ballots were counted by hand, Clinton averaged 34% and Obama 38%. Although the recount was conducted after a request by Dennis Kucinich it was not completed because he could not afford to pay for it.
via: The Progressive Populist
Jimmy Carter has never endorsed a presidential candidate prior to the nomination since leaving the White House. When ask about the presidential race he said this about Obama. See video via WSJ below.
"Obama's campaign has been extraordinary and titillating for me and my family."
"We have four children with their spouses, we have eleven grandchildren, four or five of them are married, and all of them, except one, are for Obama."
"I think that Obama will be almost automatically a healing factor in the animosity now and the distrust that relates to our country and its government."
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Many of the votes she received were cast by absentee or long before Obama's latest bounce coming out of South Carolina. Voters making up their minds in the last week broke heavily towards Obama.
The probability of arriving at the August convention in Denver with the nominee still undetermined due to a lack of enough delegates now seems plausible, 2025 are needed. The importance of the excluded delegates from Michigan and Florida therefore loom extremely large. Florida has 210 potential delegates and Michigan 156, and if they are reinstated they represent enough delegates to possibly tip the balance and determine the eventual nominee.
Hillary Clinton realizes this clearly as demonstrated by her recent overtures to get these banned delegates reinstated. The Obama camp has resisted the temptation to involve itself with these delegates and so far has pretty much played by the Party rules previously agreed to by all the candidates, including Clinton.
But true to the Clintons moral compass readings it is apparently acceptable to cheat if it means you’ll be victorious in the end. Party leaders must stop this apparent attempt to circumvent the rules that could lead to a stolen nomination.
Even though it is a violation of her pledge not to campaign in the states involved in the controversy she has been doing just that, and demonstrated by her efforts this week aimed at influencing the vote in Florida and her trips there where polls show she leads by a large margin. In fact she is planning a victory rally tomorrow in Florida.
In the Michigan primary held on January 18th Clinton received 55% percent of the vote and uncommitted received 40%. Obama was not on the ballot but the uncommitted vote maybe an indication of his voter support in Michigan. The most recent polls in Florida breakdown is Clinton at 50% Obama at 26%. Clinton almost daily pandering aimed at the voters in Florida may have raised her popularity there while Obama has been slow to develop a public strategy to deal with the problem.
This is why the DNC needs to act now to create a fair way to determine who will eventually be awarded these outlawed delegates before it actually becomes a potential black eye to the party by ending up in a bitter floor fight at the convention or worse.
Florida and Michigan will be important states in the fall general election. It will be crucial that the DNC not alienate the voters in these states further by not allowing for some sort of compromise over the participation of their delegates in the nominating process.
I suggest a round of caucuses in June or July be held where the candidates will have time to actually fully campaign beforehand. Then the delegates should be awarded based on the outcome.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Kerry started out with a handicap in the eyes of voters in what turned out to be the red states. He represented just another Northeast snob liberal.
It became the paramount concern of Democrats to find a candidate who was electable. Not necessarily the best, in their estimation, simply electable. So Kerry’s experience and military service seemed like a smart move for voters based on the anticipated national security theme the Republicans telegraphed they were going use as bludgeon on the head of the Democratic challenger no matter whom it turned out to be.
Remember that goofy salute thing he did the night of his acceptance speech. Reporting for duty! It was like badly staged vaudeville.
Later on Kerry, a honorable and well intentioned man, seemed to have problems articulating his vision to the masses. During the presidential candidate debates Bush even seemed to hold his own. Something Democrats found hard to believe at the time. Kerry had the propensity to a long-winded and rather esoteric speaking style that left many wondering when he finally finished just what he meant to say.
Kerry was intelligent but apparently unable to really communicate a clear vision to the masses of what his election would do to protect and better the nation. This hampered him throughout the campaign.
The Kerry campaign was not prepared for the dirty tactics of the likes of Carl Rove and his surrogates and allowed the Republicans to turn his image as a Viet Nam War hero into that of a malingering yellow cowardly opportunist and flip flopper. Actually flipping the truth that to this day astounds anyone who saw it happen right in front of their eyes. Bush of course was the real malingerer not Kerry but those facts somehow got overlooked or failed to resound. From this form of character assassination the term “swift boating” was coined. Many say Kerry did not respond quickly or strongly enough to the lies.
Really wasn’t the 2004 election really about how fear was used by the Republicans so effectively against a confused and fear ridden Democratic Party base.
Soon after Kerry was nominated Democrats began to have buyer’s remorse about him. But it was far too late. The argument being that they probably should of stuck with Dean or perhaps even Edwards. We should of gone with our gut feelings it went. Instead we were forced into the lesser of two evils predicaments. I don’t like either of them but oh what the hell.
Remember the fear that transcended America that election year? Terrorists everywhere, war in Iraq, and 9/11 fresh in our minds. Fear ruled us. The Republicans used this fear to their advantage. The democrats were unable to play the fear card for they feared they would seem weak, a habit they still fall into today in the Congress. Even after gaining seats and majorities in the 2006 Congressional elections they are still often paralyzed by fear of appearing soft on terrorists, immigration, crime or you name it.
“I accept chaos. I am not sure whether it accepts me. I know some people are terrified of the bomb. But then some people are terrified to be seen carrying a modern screen magazine. Experience teaches us that silence terrifies people the most.” Bob DylanIt’s a fear to stand up to fear or reject fear or afraid to appear afraid. Their self -reliance has failed them over and over again. Maybe this is why the approval ratings of the Congress are at historic lows. They simply lack the courage or their convictions. if they really have any.
Fast forward to the current nomination process and once again we see fear as a factor. Clinton saying in so many words that the terrorist we’ll get us if you don’t elect me. But she calls it the experience factor. Once again many Democrats who support her are quick to point out the commander in chief ready on day one Clinton rhetoric when indicating why they support Hillary. A false argument basically. For both Obama and her are at least equally experienced, to deal with terrorists. But Clinton subtlety injects the fear card to make her point.
I think if you are the fearless type you are naturally driven to Barak Obama, The visionary, the healer, the coalition builder, the future and who the young understand intuitively. Life is not worth living if you must live it in fear.
Things always turn out badly when your fear makes your decisions for you.
Will fear once again make Democrats choose their nominee badly? Will we again choose someone who tells us to be fearful of the future? Or will we have the courage to reject fear.
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Saturday, January 26, 2008
A president like my father, Kennedy labels Obama.
Unfortunately there are many well meaning and sincere women out there that are hypnotized by the quest for the holy grail of electing the first woman president. Even though their reasons for doing so are base predominantly on gender and not on her character, electability, leadership, or vision, or her well known negatives.
Can you say President John McCain? Nominate Hillary and you'll probably have to learn how.
Many of these women have probably not focused on much more then the fact that Hillary has a vagina just like they do and somehow that's enough to qualify her for the job. But, of course, that shouldn't really have anything to do with being elected president should it?
The truth perhaps is that Hilliary Clinton's time has actually passed and that she is not the right person for the job or the times in with we live today. She's so sixties.
Another thing. One of the most annoying things progressive women, who are under the spell of Hillary, should be asking themselves is why has Hillary allowed Bill to dominate the campaign to the extent he has. I think it is more than just arguable that there was a backlash against Bill's acting out in the South Carolina. Perhaps a sign of what to expect
from a first husband Bill if she actually is electable.
His behavior marginalizes and diminishes her stature as some one who wants to be the first woman president. Plus no one is really voting for Bill Clinton's for president are they?
This was a good old country boy ass whipping folks.
The South Carolina exit polls show that Bill and Hillary Clinton’s subtle attempts to make Barak Obama into another Jessie Jackson stereotypical BLACK candidate or bring him down in the political mud where the Clintons reside has failed and perhaps evened backfired.
I think it is because vast numbers of Americans in 2008 apparently don’t care about Obama’s race or care anymore for Bill Clinton’s outdated political campaign shenanigans. Or for that matter for what the Clintons really represent; the past, dirty politics, lying if necessary to get someone to vote for you and political slash and burn divisiveness.
So wake up if you haven’t already and smell the new coffee people!
History may look at this night as the turning point and beginning of the begining of the end of Clinton machine presidential aspirations and the leadership of the Democratic party and the rise of Senator Barak Obama's star as the true, legitimate and viable candidate that actually represents the REAL generational and political change America is demanding in these troubled times.
Friday, January 25, 2008
Saturday, January 26
Location:Vashon Public Library
17210 Vashon Hwy. S.W .
Vashon, WA 98070
Come and meet other supporters who live on Vashon Island! Learn what you can do to help! This is a follow-up to our initial organizational meeting. We will be checking in on our progress towards the goal of making sure that the Vashon precincts get a decisive Obama turnout.
Meanwhile in South Carolina...
Thursday, January 24, 2008
I guess everyone going to get a tax rebate check this summer if they paid taxes last year and didn’t make over a certain amount of money. Of course, I’m not about to look a gift horse in the mouth in an election year either am I? But isn’t this just a form of massive pandering to potential voters by both ineffective no ideas political parties. I guess studies show that these cash giveaways help but aren't there better ways to stimulate the economy?
Like thousands of long-term high paying jobs that would be created by a massive repair and upgrading of the nation’s infrastructure. It pretty much agreed that the country’s infrastructure is falling apart. Think about the bridge in Minnesota that fell down as being just the tip of the deteriorating infrastructure iceberg. How about the Viaduct situation, the 520 bridge or mass transit in and around Seattle.
How about all those roads, bridges, ports, docks, drinking water facilities, solid waste facilities, waterways, locks, airports and mass transit systems ad infinitum nationwide? There has been some political rumblings by Senator Dodd and Hegel already.
Don’t we need some sort of massive “war on the infrastructure” program? Wouldn’t it created thousands of high wage jobs for a sustained period of time and therefore be killing two birds (sorry vegans) with one stone by stimulating the economy and pumping billions of dollars into the hands of businesses and their workers while at the same time repairing the nation’s crumbling infrastructure.
This has got to at least compare in scope to the promises the presidential candidates are making about creating all those new green jobs WHEN we becoming energy independent. So why not do both. I can hear the Republicans yelling it's Socialism already.
So America lets roll up our sleeves and put everyone back to work getting paid real money from real jobs so they can buy real buliding materials at the Home Depot. Not to oversimplify, but wouldn't it beat dropping bombs on people in Iraq or arming the Saudis?
I wouldn’t need your stinking rebate and I’d be really stimulated for sure.
So Harry Reid’s schedule is more important then your constitution rights according to Senator Useless.
Reid threatens to make the Democrats opposing FISA “really filibuster” the bill if they persisted. Something he never required of the Republicans on Iraq or children’s health coverage bills that were before the Senate previously. This guy is a gutless telecom lobby and Republican shill. Why didn’t Reid ever hold the Republicans to such proceedural strictness or make them actually filibuster Democratic proposals? Here’s the back story and the link so you can tell Reid what you think.
Next question is: How do you go about getting a new Senate majority leader?
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
- Blatantly misrepresenting or misstating facts
- Withholding truth or not saying what needs to be said
- Delusional lying or inablility to recognize the truth from a lie
The 935 lies certainly add credence to the argument that Bush and Cheney should of been impeached by now. It's hard for the congressional pot to call the kettle black I guess. Dishonesty is so rampant in government today. But to standby and do nothing in the face of all the breaches of trust seems pitiful especially since thousands of people have actually died because of it.
I guess it would be what is lied about isn’t it? How many lies does it take to destroy a nation’s faith in its government? One or millions of lies?
To keep it totally fair they could do a study of all the lies told by all the members of the Congress followed by a study of all the federal agency heads then slowly begin to work their way down to the state level and finally finish up at the local city council level.
No, perhaps they’d finish up with the Port of Seattle.
Or we can just save the time and money and take it for granted that most of these phony assholes are lying or misrepresenting total sacks of shit in the first place. Like the old joke, how do you tell if a politician is lying? Their lips are moving!
History shows us that the fear of not being reelected makes liars of most political types.
Now there are some honest politicians out there and I'd appreciate if you list their names for me in the comments section. When we discover one we practically canonize them as living saints because the species is such a rarity. We name bridges after them, the town square, the playfield and the sports stadium. Oh I guess they don’t do that with sports stadiums anymore. Of course, that’s only if they are only telling little white lies that are construed later to be for the taxpayers own good.
As most of you have probably gathered if you every read my blog I like Barak Obama. Why you may ask yourself? I think we have reached critical mass in the lying department as a people and probably are at a point in our nation's history where we should at least make some small effort to identify politicians who are honest or at least demonstrate some character.
I think Obama is closer to actually being honest then, lets say, the pathological lying Bill or Hillary Clinton. So SHIPOOPI! Like that guy in the Vern Fonk commercial says. God even John McCain seems more forthright than them. McCain dishonesty is more of the delusional variety (see above) although lately Bill, the white house husband to be, has sort of gone off the board in that area.
The Clintons lies so much that they don’t even realize that they are in fact lying sometimes.
Part of Obama’s appeal is he promises to be honest with the American people. Because of this I think he’s the leader that we need to begin to cut down on the dishonesty we have running rampant in government. All this lying has got to stop or we aren't going to have a country worth a shit in short order.
Obama’s predicament is that he only lower himself in stature and perception when he attempts to get down in the dirt and fight the two-headed dragon that Hillary and Bill Clinton represent. Entire libraries of books and commentaries have been written about the especially insidious skill of the Clintons when it comes to destroying their political opponents. This is why right or wrong they are so vilified by the right and mistrusted by those of us who now seek a NEW political paradigm and narrative for America.
I believe that Obama and Hillary Clinton are basically the same when it comes down the major political issues of the day, all the hair splitting by the Clintons and Obama aside. This is why the real choice is really about integrity, character, leadership, vision and who really offers the change everyone is apparently seeking.
If Obama is to have any chance he must continue to take the high road with his idealistic message of hope and change. He must continue to offer the outline for a new coalition of voters made up of Democrats, independents, the young, minorities and disenchanted Republicans.
As Obama often says, “There are no blue states or red states only the United States.”
Obama should take his message to an even higher level of idealistic political discourse that’s far above the run of the mill Clinton message below. The Clintons are not capable of competing at this idealistic political altitude, they just play like they do on TV. They’d rather make Obama respond to the exaggerations and outright fabrications being made against him down in the dirt. When they do this successfully they frame him as just another politician. Which is exactly what the Clintons embody and is the turf on which they can compete and probably eliminate Obama.
If they are successful in bringing Obama and his message down to their level the Clintons will win the nomination.
The Clintons represent the contemporary democratic machine politics at it’s best and Obama is not on a level playing field. Bill and Hillary are a political team par excellence and have been planning their political dynasty in one form or the other since they first met in law school. I think that this is why Hillary appears so upset with Obama.
How dare Obama even challenge her birthright and ascendancy to the office of the president of the United States at this time? Hillary arrogantly emanates the belief that it’s her turn to be president in every facial expression and thing she does. The Clintons are very much joined at the brain when it comes to polities. It certainly should makes one think what that premise represents if Hillary actually becomes president. Who will really be running the show?
What is Obama to do now?
Obama must attack the institutional nuance politics, including the subtle use of race, (re: slum lords, drug use) in which the Clintons and the right often wallow. He must explain in idealistic terms how this damages everyone of us. The Clintons would love to reduce Obama to another Jessie Jackson black candidate. Not the generational and racially transcendent person that he actually represents.
Obama must attack the general acceptance of lying if it’s necessary in the name of getting elected that the Clintons represent and refuse to participate in it himself. He must emphasis and condemn the use of a divisive narrative that the Clinton’s phony patronizing and pandering represents and for which the Clintons are the model.
Obama must admit that really he would agree with Hillary on most issues and is really offering a new alternative movement away from the divisive nature of the Clintonian school of Democratic Party establishment divisive and ineffective political history and discourse.
He must emphasis his ability to think big, differently, outside the acceptable boundaries and political norms. He must put his dreams into words and programs that will make them a set of ideals that America can work to make a new reality. He must continue to clarify his vision of a new broad political coalition for the future.
He must continue to show us the way to the new day and a generational changing of the American political landscape.
Monday, January 21, 2008
His attacks on Obama demonstrate very clearly the divisive nature of the Clinton long used practice of the Southern style of good old boy political attacks. Where getting elected is the ultimate goal not necessarily telling the truth when attacking your opponent. The attacks are done in a way where Hillary can deny the collusion completely, call it unfortunate, or just claim ignorance.
"Im not making this up" is the tag line that Clinton likes to use to end an attack du jours on Obama. The problem is that he is usually the one making it all up as he goes. Whether it's an out of context attack on Obama because of his observation on Ronald Reagan, the big fuss Bill made about the caucus voter suppression operations by certain labor unions in Nevada, the MLK controversy, teen drug use, (with it's racial stereotyping), electing Obama would be "rolling the dice" or the big fairy tale comment misrepresenting Obama's record on the Iraq war that he made before the New Hampshire primary.
Most of these statements by Bill were made so late in the particular campaign that it was impossible for the Obama camp to refute them before the actual voting took place. After the election when the damage has been done the accusations are discredited in the press.
The other question that should be asked is who are we really voting for Hillary or Bill? I guess if you want Bill to have a third term your not to concerned about it.
Hillary let's her candidacy be demeaned by letting the potential first husband Bill do all the heavy lifting. Is she really up to being the first woman president or is she too weak to do her own political dirty work in defense of her own political positions? It also raises the question about what role Bill will actually play in a Hillary white house. Will she be able to control him or is he really going to be the shadow president?
Saturday, January 19, 2008
Thursday, January 17, 2008
When it comes to real political change many progressives are often extremely intransigent. This often makes them appear cynical and hypocritical to independents and moderates and to younger voters. If you asked a progressive or liberal, about this apparent dichotomy they would probably deny it even exist. Liberals tend to consider themselves open-minded, creative, better educated, more intelligent and cutting edge when their core beliefs are compared to those of their conservative brethren.
This is why so many artists and creative types are often more likely to be liberal then conservative, or tend to be more left leaning then right. It a important part of their creative comfort zone.
Change is good then isn't it?
Apparently change is not good with this crowd. Progressives with superior self-images can be easily spotted. The left wing truth squads. Changing voters one bumper sticker at a time. Change is our mantra. Look at the back end of the vehicles they drive. These are cars with all the high-minded morally superior bumper sticker messages. Frankly they often drive me batty. So much for a waste of free speech.
I’m a teacher and I vote. Godless Liberal. I think therefore I am liberal. Keep your theology off my biology. And my personal favorite, Warning: Driving causes air pollution, global warming, road, sprawl, loss of habitat, traffic jams, accidents, malls and is linked to resource wars. Whew! Perhaps nobody really cares what your political positions are during the middle of rush hour.
My case in point about change is Clinton versus Obama. You'd have to admit something old and something brand new.
Hillary represents the party establishment and old school politics. She also represents to a greater extent the political battles of the sixties. The biggies like civil rights, the feminist movement, abortion rights, and the environmental movement. She also represents Bill Clinton’s baggage and it’s divisive style of centrist politics. This is why she remain so controversial with many voters.
Obama represents an attempt to build a new left wing coalition. One made up of the young voters, moderates, minorities, Democrats tired of an ineffective party, independents, and dissatisfied Republicans. Obama offers A NEW DIRECTION FOR LIBERAL AMERICAN POLITICS.
Why are many progressives so opposed to this obvious change for the better? Either you are for change or not or open to trying new ideas or not. As many of us claim to be.
Often you hear so called progressives employing the usual democratic establishment talking points and positions when arguing for Clinton. You also hear the underlying and subtle FEAR of change based on the big bad boogieman out there in the world going to get us in these anti Obama arguments. The argument goes like this. Hillary is more experienced and therefore will be better prepared to deal with terrorists on day one. This is the same argument she is putting out there and then conveniently denies when accused of using fear to get votes. Liberals have quickly blamed the right whenever they used fear to gain political support. Apparently many progressives don’t see that they are letting fear rule them when it comes to their choice of a Democratic standard bearer.
You got to get past the fear folks.
I simply don’t see it as a viable argument when you are trying to compare Obama against Clinton on the issue of who can better provide for our security. Both are equally competent. This is a straw horse argument. As are many others about experience versus change. It should be more about judgment and character.
So we have progressives who talk about being open to change and when it comes down to it are really not for change. We have the same people saying we shouldn’t be ruled by fear and using fear to justify their support for the status quo.
Isn’t it time we started to practice what we preach, embrace real change reject fear, and move the political system forward into a brand new future?
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
"Disgraced today throughout the four corners of the globe, America would in a single leap resume its lost grace, its capacity to inspire the imagination, that combination of myth and reality that makes it the country of all possibilities – the democracy par excellence that has such power of seduction and likeability, despite all of its gaping flaws."
The complete translation of the article that appeared in Liberation France can be found here at Worldmeet.US.
The initial questioning proved that most of these nitwit so called news commentators are more interested in conflict based personal attack politics and the ratings they think that will bring them then any real debate on the issues.
The debate then proceeded to an impressive discussion of the candidate’s positions on major issues. What immediately became apparent is that the candidates differ little. Whether it be healthcare, Iraq, the economy, national security, veterans, etc..
Their proposed personal style of leadership was what really was on display for me during this debate. As far as winners and losers the outcome appears to comes down to who do you trust to be the best qualified to inspired and lead the country in a new direction. I preferred Obama’s "Sidney Poitier" intelligent higher ground new direction approach to Hillary’s rather status quo establishment ready on day one rhetoric. But that’s my take.
One thing I saw in this debate is that I think Obama is really ready to be the leader we need on day one. I think he showcased his intelligence, spontaneous nature and his outstanding grasp of the issues extremely well. It eliminated most of my fear that he wouldn't be able to hold his own against a tough Republican challenger. This guy is good and I think will get even stronger if he actually wins the nomination.
After the debate per the usual format Chris Matthews and the rest of the regular MSNBC talking heads and experts discussed the debates supposed outcome at nausea. Matthews who has been under a massive attack lately from all angles for his misogynistic comments about Hillary Clinton seemed to be offering a make up call for her by going on endlessly about how she looked so regal and presidential and had reestablished herself as the front runner once again. To Matthews she was shrewd and in control. Something I didn’t see. I saw a competent Hillary in the style of the Hillary we all know and love. It’s a wonder that steam doesn’t come out her ears because of the speed you know that brain is going trying to triangulate things.
Later on one of my favorites Keith Olbermann was disappointing when he complained that the debate seemed a bit too “wonky”. Much of the discussion about the debate by the assembled was along the lines that the debate was not very entertaining because the participants had been too civil towards each other and for some unknown reason refused to let the debate degenerate into a race or gender battle royal. How boring! Can your imaging candidates being civil and debating actual issues.
Air America’s Rachel Maddow help damper down Matthews Hillary “love fest and I feel good all over" performance by making a few points about how she thought that Obama and John Edwards had in fact held their ground against Clinton.
Perhaps Obama had even done better than Matthews thought was her observation. Thank god she was there. In another demonstration of how the Republicans would prefer to face Hillary Pat Buchanan started to echo Matthews praise of Clinton’s performance. But Maddow once again countered that she thought Obama had certainly held his own. Next thing Buchanan goes off on a tangent about how anyone of the Republican candidates would “eat Obama for breakfast in the general”. Maddow demanded that Buchanan name one. They quickly went to station break leaving Buchanan in full stammer.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
In light of the shenanigans of the Clinton Campaign in the last few days I think the above account says worlds about Hillary and Bill today. I think that there is no doubt that they have adopted this style of gutter campaigning and character assassination that is Rove’s trademark, used so effectively to destroy his political opponents.
I acknowledge that politics is a full contact sport. I also realize that there are many in the Democratic Party who actually want the party to co-opt Rove's Republican election tactics if it means wining elections.
But is such a move ethical or would we just be selling our souls to the devil?
Barak Obama has identified as a positive campaign issue the appeal of a candidate who offers a change from this type of divisive political discourse. He has based much of his campaign on the theme of change and breaking from the past. He’s offering a new kind of politics and an end to the era of Bush Clinton Bush Clinton political sickness. He is certainly not without fault, but he offers something promising, bright and above all new.
dog-whistle politics n. a concealed, coded, or unstated idea, usually divisive or politically dangerous, nevertheless understood by the intended voters. Also dog whistle issue.
The most notable Rove tactic was one of planting unsubstantiated accusations, categorizations or smears of the opponent in the press or in the public sector. Often surrogates or political operatives were used, but some were simply started by rumor, or by using some other anonymous source. One of the most well known being the smearing of the Democratic Governor of Texas Ann Richards who opposed George W Bush for re-election. Richards a progressive, who was unmarried, had appointed several gays and lesbians to different state positions. Rove started rumors that Richards was a lesbian. The accusations put her on the defensive much of the time and unfortunately stuck and led to Richards losing enough bigoted independent votes to swing the election to Bush and Rove was crowned the boy genius.
"Even Hillary Clinton's campaign manager, Patti Solis Doyle, seems to agree, effectively vowing to run her operation much as Rove did his two successful national campaigns. "She expresses admiration for the way George W. Bush's campaign team controlled its message, and, given her druthers, would run this race no differently," Michelle Cottle writes in New York magazine. "'We are a very disciplined group, and I am very proud of it,' she says with a defiant edge."
The candidate caught in these Rove style attacks ends up defending themselves or denying the rumors or smears instead of talking about the real issues of the campaign. The rumors are given legitimacy when repeated in the press or otherwise widely reported. Meanwhile the campaign that is behind the smear response is that they know nothing about the source of the rumors or that they find them "unfortunate". They emphasize that they are simply trying to run a issues oriented campaign.
Does this all sound familiar?
In the Rove method of good old boy power politics winning is everything. It transcends party and even the common good. This needs to stop now. This is why this country so badly needs a new political narrative that shouldn’t include anyone named Bush, Clinton or Rove.
Monday, January 14, 2008
January 13, 2008
PRESIDENT BUSH: Doctor Aida, thank you very much for the kind introduction. Ministers, members of the diplomatic corps, and distinguished guests: I am honored by the opportunity to stand on Arab soil and speak to the people of this nation and this region.
He speaks prominently about the oligarchy and royal ruling families of the Middle East who hold power over the people through control of their countries military and oil reserves. Woman are subjugated and others beaten and hanged by these tyrants for no more than minor violations of social or religious based laws.
Throughout the sweep of history, the lands that the Arab people call home have played a pivotal role in world affairs. These lands sit at the juncture of three great continents _ Europe and Asia and Africa. These lands have given birth to three of the world’s major religions. These lands have seen the rise and fall of great civilizations. And in the 21st century, these lands are once again playing a central role in the human story.
A great new era is unfolding before us. This new era is founded on the equality of all people before God. This new era is being built with the understanding that power is a trust that must be exercised with the consent of the governed _ and deliver equal justice under the law.
With two of the elections to office of George W Bush legality still very much in question this claim is at best disingenuous. Bush should ask the prisoners held at Guantanamo what they think of America’s equal justice or why he has illegally eased dropped on millions of Americans communications or when he will restore habeas corpus. All these violations directly opposing the rule of law and the country's constitutionally guaranteed rights and liberties.
And this new era offers hope for the millions across the Middle East who yearn for a future of peace and progress and opportunity.
Free of American bombs, armies of occupation and plundering of their natural resources.
Here in Abu Dhabi, we see clearly the outlines of this future. Beginning with the revered father of this country _ Sheikh Zayed _ you have succeeded in building a prosperous society out of the desert. You have opened your doors to the world economy. You have encouraged women to contribute to the development of your nation _ and they have occupied some of your highest ministerial posts. You have held historic elections for the Federal National Council. You have shown the world a model of a Muslim state that is tolerant toward people of other faiths. I’m proud to stand in a nation where the people have an opportunity to build a better future for themselves and their families. Thank you for your warm hospitality.
In my country, we speak of these developments as the advance of freedom. Others may call it the advance of justice. Yet whatever term we use, the ideal is the same. In a free and just society, every person is treated with dignity. In a free and just society, leaders are accountable to those they govern. And in a free and just society, individuals can rise as far as their talents and hard work will take them.
Only the most conservative jingoists in the United States would currently speak in such terms. No one believes that freedom has march a inch since Bush’s started his ill-fated preemptive war with Iraq. He has managed to destabilize most of the middle east including Pakistan and through his preoccupation with Iraq he has place progress made in Afghanistan in jeopardy.
For decades, the people of this region saw their desire for liberty and justice denied at home and dismissed abroad in the name of stability. Today your aspirations are threatened by violent extremists who murder the innocent in pursuit of power. These extremists have hijacked the noble religion of Islam, and seek to impose their totalitarian ideology on millions. They hate freedom and they hate democracy _ because it fosters religious tolerance and allows people to chart their own future. They hate your government because it does not share their dark vision. They hate the United States because they know we stand with you in opposition to their brutal ambitions. And everywhere they go, they use murder and fear to foment instability to advance their aims.
Violent extremist like Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and the neocons who hijacked Iraq by fabricating a reason for war while their real goal was to gain control of the vast deposits of oil to fuel America’s gluttony for petroleum and reward their oil industry friends.
Bush and Cheney used America’s military to bomb and dismember the country of Iraq without any real plan to rebuild it after doing so. In the process they have killed or displaced hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. The surviving families of Iraqis who have suffered during the Bush administration debacle will hold America in contempt for generations.
One cause of instability is the extremists supported and embodied by the regime that sits in Tehran. Iran is today the world’s leading state sponsor of terror. It sends hundreds of millions of dollars to extremists around the world _ while its own people face repression and economic hardship at home. It undermines Lebanese hopes for peace by arming and aiding the terrorist group Hezbollah. It subverts the hopes for peace in other parts of the region by funding terrorist groups like Hamas and the Palestine Islamic Jihad. It sends arms to the Taliban in Afghanistan and Shia militants in Iraq. It seeks to intimidate its neighbors with ballistic missiles and bellicose rhetoric. And finally, it defies the United Nations and destabilizes the region by refusing to be open and transparent about its nuclear programs and ambitions. Iran’s actions threaten the security of nations everywhere. So the United States is strengthening our longstanding security commitments with our friends in the Gulf _ and rallying friends around the world to confront this danger before it is too late.
Cut off and demonized by Bush the Iranians have become more aggressive towards us. Our unfair and unbalanced support of Israel has blocked any just or fair middle east policy concerning the formation of a Palestinian State. This has created a breeding ground for the growth of radical groups like Hezbollah. Al Quaeda in Iraq was a byproduct of Bush's war. The destabilizing of the country creating a political vacuum there which radical and violent groups like al Quaeda were more than happy to fill.
The other major cause of instability is the extremists embodied by al Qaeda and its affiliates. On September 11, 2001, al Qaeda murdered nearly 3,000 people on America’s home soil. Some of the victims that day were innocent Muslims. And since then, al Qaeda and its allies have killed many more Muslims here in the Middle East _ including women and children. In Afghanistan under the Taliban, on Iraq’s Anbar Province, they ruled by intimidation and murder. Their goal is to impose that same dark rule across the Middle East. So they seek to topple your governments, acquire weapons of mass destruction, and drive a wedge between the people of the United States and the people of the Middle East. And they will fail. The United States joins you in your commitment to the freedom and security of this region _ and we will not abandon you to terrorists or extremists.
Bush fails to see, as do most narrow minded Americans, that although al Queda can never be justified for attacking the US, we sowed many of the seeds through our own ill advised foreign entanglements going back for years. These misguided interferences in the internal affairs of other nations eventually manifested itself as blowback in the attacks of 9/11.
How many innocent children has been killed as collateral damage by American forces with our bombs and bullets. If you kill someone by crashing a plane into a building is it any different that dropping a bomb on someone’s home in Bagdad during “shock and awe”? Is it okay for us to blow up innocent civilians numbering in the hundreds of thousands and argue somehow that it is acceptable simply because we are righteous America?. Both sides in the argument are equally to blame for the use of terror as a weapon.
The fight against the forces of extremism is the great ideological struggle of our time. And in this fight, our nations have a weapon more powerful than bombs or bullets. It is the desire for freedom and justice written into our hearts by Almighty God _ and no terrorist or tyrant can take that away. We see this desire in the 12 million Iraqis who dipped their fingers in purple ink as they voted in defiance of al Qaeda. We see the desire in the Palestinians who elected a President committed to peace and reconciliation. We see this desire in the thousands of Lebanese whose protests helped rid their country of a foreign occupier. And we see this desire in the brave dissidents and journalists who speak out against terror and oppression and injustice. We see this desire in the ordinary people across the Middle East, who are sick of violence, who are sick of corruption, sick of empty promises _ and who choose a free future whenever they are given a chance.
Sure Iraqis voted in great numbers but after years of war they have little progress to show for their efforts. Sectarian violence still is a daily issue. A broken government still is the trademark of Bush’s form of American imposed Iraqi democracy. Al Queda only exists in Iraq today because Bush created the conditions for it to thrive with his delusional rightwing Christian driven philosopical war.
This statement is at the heart of the Bush fantasy. If the idea of liberty is more powerful then bombs and bullets why does Bush use only bombs and bullets to force his ideals down the throats of other nations and cultures instead of an America that could be the moral beacon of the world that others look to for moral leadership and as an example to emulate.
God knows that US citizens are especially sick of the widespread corruption and incompetence that has become a metaphor for the US government under the leadership of George Bush and Dick Cheney. How dare he tell other nations how they must live or be governed. Isn't this just more American hypocrisy?
Saturday, January 12, 2008
By Joe Gandelman
Isn’t this the kind of thing Democrats (and we’ve done posts on it and decried it) denounce when Republicans do it to keep Democratic voters away from the polls?
Nevada’s state teachers union and six Las Vegas area residents filed a lawsuit late Friday that could make it harder for many members of the state’s huge hotel workers union to vote in the hotly contested Jan. 19 Democratic caucus in Nevada.
This is ANOTHER one of these stories that has a strange coincidence: if you read it, there is a link to supporters of New York Senator Hillary Clinton. Read on:
The 13-page lawsuit in federal district court here comes two days after the 60,000-member Culinary Workers Union Local 226 in Nevada endorsed Senator Barack Obama, a blow to Mrs. Clinton. Mr. Obama addressed the Culinary Union at their hall earlier Friday.
The lawsuit argues that the Nevada Democratic Party’s decision, decided late last year, to create at-large precincts inside nine Las Vegas resorts on caucus day violates the state’s election laws and creates a system in which voters at the at-large precincts can elect more delegates than voters at other precincts. The lawsuit employs a complex mathematical formula to show that voters at the other 1,754 precincts would have less influence with their votes.
And — here we go again — here’s yet another coincidence. It appears that some of the folks involved support the campaign of New York Senator Hillary Clinton:
The at-large precincts are being established because thousands of hotel workers cannot leave work to participate in the midday caucuses in their home precincts. The Nevada State Education Association has said it would not endorse any Democrat, but some of its top officials have endorsed Mrs. Clinton. The association’s deputy executive director, Debbie Cahill, for instance, was a founding member of Senator Clinton’s Nevada Women’s Leadership Council.
“This could shut down those precincts in the casinos and keep culinary members from voting,” said Jon Ralston, a political pundit with The Las Vegas Sun, who broke the story on his blog. Mr. Ralston said it is unclear whether there are ties between the lawsuit and the Clinton campaign but, he predicted, “Even if they’re Hillary supporters, the campaign’s going to say they had nothing to do with it. It is unclear when the court will hear the matter.
FOOTNOTE: I’m an independent voter registered here in CA. I just got my absentee ballot. I can and will vote in the Democratic primary. I want to see elections that are UNFETTERED by coincidences such as:
–The possibility that members of a union that endorsed Obama may not be able to vote or be in any way hampered from voting their choice by a group that has Clinton supporters.
–The unnamed Clinton camp member who suggested to a reporter people who vote for Obama do so because they want a cool black friend but if they vote for Hillary, they’re voting for change. The official should be fired by Ms. Clinton. If a Republican said that to a reporter, he/she would accused of playing the race card.
–Senator Bob Kerrey, saying later he was only trying to compliment Obama, raising repeatedly Obama’s Muslim ties. With friends like these….
–The “shuck and jive” comment later explained as not referring to Obama by New York’s Andrew Cuomo (explained well).
–The attempt to get reporters to write more about Obama’s admitted early drug use. The official resigned, but the story was shoved into the news cycle and even the resignation stories got what the official wanted into the news cycle.
–Comments former President Bill Clinton had to apologize for as he faces a backlash from some blacks. Bill Clinton has an excellent record in terms of the black community. But by raising this and then denying it, the issue of race is again injected into the campaign. Aren’t there enough ISSUES around for Hillary and Barack (and Bill) to discuss? Some wonder if there is an actual racial strategy at play here.
If the Clinton camp was SMART, they will move heaven and earth to ensure that these Nevada voters who want Obama will be allowed to vote.
If not, no matter how it is denied, even if the denial is 100 percent correct, it will be seen by many non-Hillary Democrats as voter suppression. Applying the same standard applied to questions about Republicans, there could be no other conclusion — even if the Clinton camp has proof it is not involved.
All of these events that on the surface smell of old-style, sleazy politics (coincidence or not) are truly a pity. Because Ms. Clinton is coming into her own as a campaigner:
(1) She was on television here in San Diego in a live broadcast from Bonita, about 20 miles from the San Diego-Tijuana border. She truly HAS found her voice. She looks relaxed, telegenic, and now has a way of coming across as someone who is involved in a conversation with voters one-on-one, rather than reading talking points. So her campaign technique and skills are on the scent.
(2) She is winning some admirers, and not just among women. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich has praised her, saying some of the things we’ve noted here:
After Clinton’s third-place finish in the Jan. 3 Iowa Democratic caucuses, “it would have been very easy for her to have broken, accepted defeat,” Gingrich said in a weekly podcast e-mailed to supporters.
“Instead, starting on Saturday night, she fought back with greater and greater intensity, and she opened herself up,” Gingrich went on. “She talked as a person, without all the protection, without all the discipline, and she became more and more appealing.”
Gingrich said that shift demonstrated “the courage to learn” and enabled the New York senator to grow “in the space of three or four days to a much more attractive, much more aggressive and much more appealing candidate.”
As a result, he posited, New Hampshire voters who made up their minds at the last minute “were going to Sen. Clinton, were affected by her campaign, by her integrity, by her openness.”
And if you look at the list above, it makes a case for independent voters who truly want to see campaigns waged on the discussion of issues and not peppered with coincidences that on paper seem to fit a pattern decide to cast a vote AGAINST a kind of politics.…rather than a vote FOR or against any particular candidate.
Via: The Moderate Voice
Friday, January 11, 2008
The Fox News commentators, who are really in love with the sound of their own voices, followed the Fox News modus operandi by offering as many hypothetical softball warmongering wing nut jingoistic questions as possible to the assembled jar heads in the time allowed.
“Senator Thompson, the governor (Huckabee) says the 12 million people would be looked at individually. How would you find them? And could you do it faster than he would, sir?”
“Governor Huckabee, did the American commander in the Strait of Hormuz the other day make the right decision by responding passively when approached aggressively by Iranian fast boats believed to be from the Revolutionary Guards? He also received, as you know, a warning that said that the American ships might be about to blow up. Did he make the correct call, sir?”
Senator McCain just about blew a carotid artery waiting his turn to answer that last one. Huckabee’s answer ended with a reference to the Iranians last vision being one of the “gates of hell” and Thompson reaction ended with: “I think one more step and they would have been introduced to those virgins that they're looking forward to seeing.” Both answers were followed by the assembled audience of hillbillies applauding and back slapping and high-fives like they were at a Charlotte Speedway NASCAR infield party.
Ron Paul the court jester of the debate was generally ridiculed by his fellow Republicans. His responses often caused a slack jawed look from his rivals and drew the consternation of Fox’s Bret Hume and the anti Paul supporters in the large audience. The faces of the Fox commentators and the other participants were the highlight of the debate for me running from that of look of extreme constipation to one of someone being goosed whenever Paul responded. Like this answer about the middle East peace process:
I think if we'd have been out of there a lot sooner, there may well have been a much different settlement after the Kuwait invasion, because Israel was quite capable of working with moderate Arab nations. They tried to. None of the Arab nations wanted Saddam Hussein in Kuwait and I think they could have taken care of Saddam Hussein back then and saved all the mess that we have now, because I think there are so many unintended consequences and way too much blowback.
The overall impression when watching one of the GOP debates is that these yoyos are stuck in the 1860’s. McCain gets so wound up when talking about why he thinks the surge is working that he sort of does a cartoon character Hulk transformation thing. It would seem to appear to me that McCain
would be the most viable candidate against either Obama or Clinton.
But I also think that if Obama is nominated the contrast between him and McCain will be extremely sharp. Basically Obama's youth, hope and the possibilities versus McCain’s old, curmudgeonly out of date same old shit smoke and mirrors speak . Frankly I don't think that any of the other Republican candidates can beat a Democrat nominee given the steamer trunks of baggage they all seem to carry.
Underlying this of course is the question of whether American voters can overcome their unwarranted and exploited fear of international terrorism and the war in Iraq and be willing to trust a new generation of leaders to protect them with new ideas and approaches to the problem of getting along with other people in the world.
Wednesday, January 09, 2008
Women Fear The Bradley Effect A Good Cry And A Fairy Tale Help Clinton Political Machine Survive Elimination
Women in New Hampshire apparently finally got the memo that Hillary needed their help if she was to continue her attempt at becoming the first woman president. Girls got to stand together even if they’re supporting a divisive political hack I guess. A vast majority of women apparently help create the upset and come from behind win for her in Tuesday night’s primary. Women in Iowa who ended up voting mostly for Obama didn't do it in New Hampshire. When all seemed lost and most pundits predicting a large Obama victory Clinton was able to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat and stop the possible extinction of the Clinton political machine for now.
Something I would personally favor because it's time to move on into the future people instead of reliving the past over and over again. Especially since it isn’t working anymore. Move over and let the kids run things. We fucked it up enough. Shouldn't the sixties thing be finished once and for all?
Why were the polls so wrong? Apparently because of something called the Bradley Effect. Named after former LA mayor Tom Bradley. That’s where white people being surveyed apparently lie to the pollsters because they think that they will be perceived to be politically incorrect if they say their not voting for an African American. Weird, shallow and dumb but some professor apparently has dedicated his life to proving it’s real when the worlds align and your also doing a poll before an election where there are black people running for office.
Democrats I’ve talked to like to rail on about all the fear that Bush and his gang use to manipulate their lives. But apparently fear of another attack by terrorists motivated Democrats into voting for Clinton. I suppose because they bought into the Hillary narrative that somehow she’d be tougher than Obama on the terrorist if and when the attack comes.
Hillary had a good cry on Monday too, which got massive play in the mainstream media.
Some accused her of acting. Some say it showed she wasn’t a robot after all and some said she should have been crying every chance she got from the beginning of the campaign. Well it apparently worked. The big cry apparently brought out the needed sympathy vote from women who felt her pain because of their empathetic feelings stemming from experiences having to live with all those dominate males.
Finally there is Bill Clinton’s speech on Monday night about the Obama phenomenon being a fairy tale. In many ways it is a fairy tail, but I thought this would backfire on Clinton because I saw it as a rather positive type of fairy tale. But Bill was of course referring, in a round-about way, to the Clinton talking point that Obama lacked the needed experience to be president immediately and it was risky to buy into the dream that maybe things could really CHANGE for the better if Obama became the nominee. I rather agree with Obama’s position on it when he says that Hillary may have experience but it the wrong kind based on what she’s done with it.
Hillary counts the eight years she was first lady in the white house as foreign affairs experience. I agree with one pundit who said that based on that analogy the pastry chef at the white house during the Clinton years would have as much experience as Hillary. But Bill’s reference to the Obama momentum as a fairy tale was apparently the right metaphor for a fear-ridden electorate of submissive women because they bought into it in sufficient numbers to effect the outcome of the election ever so slightly in Hillary's favor.
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
Missing the surge of grassroots support for Obama and especially his appeal to independents and moderate Republicans crossover voters shows that the blogs are often distracted by their own particular predetermined party driven agendas. In many ways the blogs are so partisan they have obviously lost their perspective of what is happening right in front of them in the street outside. Blogs are co-opted so that their roles have been reduced to that of the wonky apparatus of a legislatively ineffective out of touch and stagnating political parties controlled mostly by the special interests, party hacks and limited issue oriented political fringe groups.
Like Hillary Clinton’s campaign the blogosphere has become an aspect of the divisive status quo partisan style of politics that this country has been suffering under for a quarter of a century or more and that the large number of average present day voters, as demonstrated by the recent election results, apparently hold in high disdain. Obama’s and Huckabee’s success in capturing the mantle of outsiders for CHANGE has resonated with the electorate. Especially a change in the tone of politics from that of extreme partisanship to general cooperation to achieve the common good.
Average folks are apparently feed up with party partisanship period. Especially when it blocks progress or does not address the glaring major problems and issues of the day and even threatens our existence as humans. To a certain extent reaching this point of renewal was expedited by Bush, Cheney, Newt Gingrich, Carl Rove and Tom Delay’s style of divide, conquer and destroy Republicanism. Not to mention the general government incompetence exhibited during the last eight years. The Democrats by their inaction, ineffectiveness and inter party bickering, much of it perpetuated by the blogosphere, certainly can claim their share of the blame for fueling the pent-up feeling for change in the country.
Obama and, to a certain extend, Huckabee as outsiders have hit on a mother lode of this pent-up frustration with the status quo, and if the machine doesn’t work don’t fix it mentality in the other Washington. But bloggers must admit they have worked to reinforce the partisan themes and the "it’s us against them mentality".
A large number of political types led by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Senator Chuck Hagel met in Oklahoma City this week to address what they see as a dysfunctional government and extreme partisanship. One of the themes that Obama has hit a cord with and that has become a central appeal of his campaign with voters.
Meanwhile lefty bloggers continue to pump out the same old tired partisan crap in a rather mechanical ways. Apparently aware that perhaps something is happening here but not really sure what it is yet. Blogs are rather ill prepared or open-minded enough to see themselves as part of the problem. They see themselves as being above the fray. By their continuing support of partisan political themes they seem unwilling to see that the tide is perhaps turning on them. They are unable to leave their comfort zones even when the train has apparently already left the station.
Monday, January 07, 2008
Friday, January 04, 2008
"There something happening here what it is I'm not exactly sure". Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young
I am in awe listening to the music of this man speaking.