Thursday, April 03, 2008

2006: Harry Taylor Outed Naked Emperor

Harry Taylor For Congress 2008

Anonymoses has an anniversary tribute to Harry.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

That's My Boy

I'm stepping out of my political slippers for a moment to post my boy's graduation montage. Where do the years go? Later this year, Johnson and Wales will be training a young man bound for a dream of culinary greatness! [And the empty nest syndrome is already seeping in].

Maureen Dowd Suggests How Dems Can Lose

Maureen Dowd:
"One of the most valuable lessons the gritty Hillary can teach the languid Obama — and the timid Democrats — is that the whole point of a presidential race is to win.

It’s not to share power, or force the squabbling couple into an arranged marriage. The winner wins, even if it’s only by a fraction of a percentage point or one Supreme Court justice. Winning has no margin of error, as the Democrats should have learned by now. And the winner gets to decide his or her running mate."

...An expected overview of the law of the political jungle....a perfectly acceptable look at how it could all work out (if you don't particularly care about the chances of actually winning this time)......

....and then we realize just how many voters are going to pick up all their marbles and go home....and stay home on election day [or worse, vote for McCain or Nader] without a unity ticket.

For this season, my friends is not your father's Democratic primary season.

It would be the pity of all pities for the Democrats in 2008 if the record-breaking numbers of voters and the never-before seen levels of excitement were only to have been recorded during the primary season....

...and then the candidate who barely edged their way into the nomination using every ugly trick in the book against the other, causing party division that defies healing in the short time between winning the primary and November picks a VP with dulling dud-value ...

..a sudden bore mixed with hard feelings that could fill a tome.

...a recipe for electoral doom.

Note (with a sigh): If there wasn't enough room for a Unity ticket due to the overcrowding of one candidate or the other's tremendously sad ego, in this blogger's opinion, John Edwards, Al Gore, and perhaps Wesley Clark could be considered as non-dull VP candidates.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Richardson: I'm No Judas; I'm Loyal to Country

Inspired by: Loyalty to My Country by Bill Richardson [Washington Post]

My thoughts: What was amusing to me in Richardson's op-ed was the way in which Gov. Richardson defended his loyalty to country. James Carville called Richardson a "Judas", which is a whole lot different than calling him a Benedict Arnold!

Jiminy Pelosi Says to Superdelegates...

Clinton is ahead with just the superdelegates, but about 40% of them have yet to announce their choice. That means that the superdelegates -- office-holders and party officials -- will likely cast the deciding votes in the nominating process. - Michael Muskal, LA Times

Halperin Creates Clinton Race-Card Scenario

Political analyst Mark Halperin is a journalist in a position to be heard and trusted by many people. You'd hope he'd be responsible in his reporting. He should know better than to place divisive race-laden words into a Presidential candidate's mouth while admitting she never once said those words. [Watch him on FOX News in the video above].

Mr. Halperin on Mrs. Clinton's alleged strategy to win over Superdelegates:
"What she's hoping, although she wouldn't say this to me, I tried to press her on it -- is that the exit poll that Fox and others do in Pennsylvania show that white voters are turning against Obama in Pennsylvania, even more than Ohio."
Mr. Halperin adds building blocks to his irresponsible framing of Senator Clinton's alleged race-based gamble in seeking the Democratic nomination. Halperin sets it up,
"Now, that is the biggest challenge to getting elected President as a Democrat is winning enough of the white vote. She hopes to show, perhaps based on what's happened with Reverand Wright, perhaps based on Obama's appeal in Pennsylvania, she hopes to be able that to superdelegates: 'look at what happened on Ohio, look at what happened in Pennsylvania, this guy can't win'. That's the mindset, that's the argument."
If you read this carefully, you'll see that, by claiming Hillary's too politically correct to admit she's betting on racism as a strategy toward winning the Democratic nomination, Mark Halperin just created a frame that is not based on any statement from Hillary Clinton or her campaign. This is how conventional wisdom grows (with no particular homage paid to the value of truth). This is what I truly hate about politics. Mr. Halperin should be ashamed. I'm ashamed for him. A person in his position should be reporting the facts and, at the very least, being careful about how he approaches the topic of race in this primary contest. He can be as non-PC as he wishes....but I firmly believe that stuffing words in Clinton's mouth while saying she refused to say the words herself our of PC-concerns is a violation of ethics in his line of business.

Out of the many reasons there are for Clinton to truly believe she'd be a better President, Mark Halperin chose the race card for her.

Isn't that special?

UPDATE: A recent development shows that Clinton campaign strategist Harold Ickes freely admits that the Reverend Wright issue has been discussed with Superdelegates. Ickes says that the Superdelegates have what he feels to be genuine concerns about voter reaction in the aftermath of Wright's decidedly startling comments..Obama's speech notwithstanding... and he felt it was appropriate to listen to those concerns. Mrs. Clinton has reacted:
Hillary spokesperson Doug Hattaway offered some clarification to ABC News: "She was and is unaware of anyone on the campaign pushing [the Wright] issue with superdelegates. She wants anyone who is talking to superdelegates to focus on our message, which is that she's best prepared to be president and beat John McCain."
Should Mrs. Clinton tell Harold Ickes to never talk about the Reverend Wright issue again? I'm not sure we should be muzzling any frank behind-the-scenes discussions about the political realities and the potential for the kind of swift-boat damage that the 527 groups so easily placed into the minds of American voters in the 2004 contest. Is it racism or is it staring into the abyss of cold hard reality? Is it worth going into denial mode for the sake of political correctness? Is it honest or is it racist to talk about the risk of loss of cross-over voters in November over Reverend Wright's statements and the public perception of Obama's long-term spiritual relationship with him?

I still hold to the belief that Mark Halperin took the lazy path to reporting this in the frame of the race-card when the issue goes much deeper in political reality.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Dems: Unity Ticket or Risk Loss

Seen at Talk Left:
"I strongly believe a Unity Ticket is necessary for Dems to have a good chance in November."

- Big Tent Democrat

Mario Cuomo thinks so (even though he and his idea are apparently being ignored).

I've been saying it (and cartooning about it) for a while now.

It's the only way to end this chaos and the only path to a possible win against John McCain.

I honestly believe anything else other than Clinton/Obama 08 (or vice versa) will be a loser by the process of party division.

Who Played The Race Card Game First?

Philadelphia Inquirer
Obama was the first to play the race card

by Sean Wilentz, Sidney and Ruth Lapidus professor of history at Princeton University

Frank Rich Gores Hillary Clinton

I thought that Frank Rich made some interesting points about the YouTube political generation in his latest column, yet I'm disappointed to see that he thinks it's Hillary Clinton who will suffer most from what he sees as a new brand of politics. His critique of her Bosnia-story mistake is reminiscent of what Mr. Rich and Maureen Dowd did to Al Gore in 2000, which was to look (or to be) clever by creating this lasting media caricature of Mr. Gore as a foolish braggart while we got Bush in the White House for eight years. So much for the "inevitability" of the not-so-different politics of 2000.

They're doing it again.
Hillary is being Gored.

Politics may have become more hip, but politicians certainly haven't. Here's my biggest fear: Hillary Clinton will be harmed irreparably, as Gore was harmed, from the hip/mocking media and late night talk shows over something relatively trivial..and that will politically advance Obama and McCain...and there will be a heck of a lot more hip/modern-techno-political damage done to Obama with the Reverend Wright issue from the Right (yeah, they know how to use YouTube, too) than I think any journalist whose center of the universe is Manhattan could understand right now.

Recent polls with limited and temporal glimpses into who-knows-whose minds aren't your Uncle Larry or your cousin Susie-May or old square Bill and Betty from Fumbuck. The Reverend Wright issue is like a tornado that left as quickly as it came. People outside the storm's path will see it on the news and forget about it quickly, but for those who were directly shaken, the storm's mark will permanently remain. There a a lot of average Americans who are not racist by extremist standards who just can't shake the words "God-damn America" out of their minds. The Right's going to play with this like a Red, White, and Blue bouncing ball in their padded room of 527 delight.

The polls also fail to reflect the Hillary-supporters who I see becoming more and more disillusioned with their party by the day. They see her trashed in the media and by the decidely nasty young-bloods in the Democratic party [a bitter division of the netroots at the once-productive Daily Kos is only a symptom of a greater illness within the party].

They're seeing self-interested politicos like Pat Leahy trying to cut off small-d democracy, which is totally antithetical to the idea of the big-D philosophy of fairness and justice. It's all too reminiscent of Florida 2000, but this time it's due to the dysfunction of the party itself. We can't even blame the Republicans for this one!

I think of the daughters who are coming of age..the ones who are pulling for Hillary..hoping to see the first female President... and only seeing how the old boys still think they can play (and win) the game. To use dated commercial jargon, I've come a long way myself, baby...and I have to say that, for all my years of observing politics, there are a lot of boys out there who still like to play games to maintain the integrity of that precious glass ceiling of theirs.

I have this nagging feeling about what's likely in store for us Democrats in this YouTube generation of politics. I think it's all about to backfire on us as we prepare for the General Election. For whatever reason. I think that many Democratic strategists are snatching division and chaos from the once-easy-flowing river of victory.

Some of my readers won't like what I'm saying here..they won't like it at all... but I'll be perfectly willing to meet them back here at this blogpost in six months and we'll revisit my current opinion, which has been borne of tough love. I think we shouldn't fool ourselves into thinking Hillary's character is weak any more than Al Gore's character was weak...whether or not people can play rotten and underhanded tricks on YouTube.