August 8, 2006

Joe and Ned slug it out

It's certain that the press will inflate the Lamont-Lieberman primary today into something like five presidential elections rolled into one.

And it's also going to be painful to hear all the bizarre opinions, uninformed pronouncements and hairbrained analysis about the role of bloggers, specifically the liberal variety.

They're already blaming some sort of evil liberal computer masterminds working for the Lamont campaign for the fact that Lieberman's campaign website went down.

A guy who knows just reported that it was a type of DOS or denial of service attack which could have been accomplished by one person anywhere in the world. All they did was go to a bulletin board or some page on the Lieberman site which had forms to fill out with name, address, etc. By entering a super long string of characters in a particular way, they can confuse the computer into allowing access which they the use to flood the site with so much data that the site shuts down. It's simply a relatively common attack which floods the system with so much information so quickly that the thing just sputters and chokes. Hardly enough to go to the press accusing your opponent of doing it. And cerainly not worthy of the massive press attention that it's getting at the moment, where they're treating it like someone was assasinated.

The fact is, THE LOSS OF THIS WEB SITE COULDN'T HAVE ANYTHING BUT THE VERY SLIGHTEST NEGATIVE IMPACT ON THE LIEBERMAN CAMPAIGN. So though predictable, the fact that Chris Matthews and the rest of the press are trying to make some HUGE deal out of this is just stupid.

The Lieberman campaign is even saying they've asked prosecutors to look into this blah, blah, blah. How pathetic.

The Lieberman camp demanded that the Lamont campaign condemn this supposed hacking of their site. So Matthews called them and passed on the demand. Of course, the Lamont spokesman calmly and rationally said that they think it's a bad thing and of course they condemn it. Oooops. End of story.

And finally, one news bunny asked the key question of Matthews. She finally had the sense to ask essentially, what difference does it make if the dumb web site is down on election day? Matthews had to admit that it really made little to none. With any luck, this dumb diversion will run out of steam.

One reporter earlier said that the web site had gone down, "just when they needed it most".

Excuse me, but a campaign website is about as useful as a campaign button on election day, or ever less. It's purpose is to communicate with potential voters, organize and attract volunteers, and collect donations during the campaign, and it's a bit late for any of that on election day.
But what do they know?

And the talking morons are busy constructing the conventional wisdom for this primary battle.

Expect to hear them spout endlessly about the "larger implications" of a Lamont win.

To be perfectly honest, you can't extrapolate anything to a national scale based on this particular primary with these particular candidates in this particular state.

It will, I believe, make it a little tougher for those who try to dismiss the influence of bloggers and their ability to raise funds, mobilize volunteers, and to be a key factor in political races, which is a good thing.

But of course, those sorts of people are the type that usually only state their case even more loudly in the face of evidence to the contrary. They usually don't let facts (or the lack of them) get in the way of what they believe.

And if a Lamont victory makes candidates finally understand that it's safe to come out and get right with reality and condemn this misadventure in Iraq in less sheepish and mealy-mouthed ways, then great.

But the fact remains that what this primary means if Lieberman loses is simply that the voters of one party (Dem) in one state (CT) were tired of Joe.

Sick of his toady-like behavior, sick of him actively undermining the party, constantly giving aid and cover to the Bush administration, and most importantly, his looney support for the phoney "war" in Iraq and insistance that things are going just fine. But perhaps even more key was his ridiculous statement on the floor of the senate. Joe pontificated, ""It's time for Democrats who distrust President Bush to acknowledge he'll be commander-in-chief for three more years. We undermine the President's credibility at our nation's peril", in effect saying that any Dems who were critical of Bush somehow endangered the country.

Go here for Charles Pierce's piece on why that quote was the straw that broke the camel's back, so to speak.

The Dem voters of Connecticut, and by extention, people across the country who can't stand Joe for the above reasons and more, simply want Joe to go. Period.

I've heard it reported that polls have shown that most voters who report they plan to vote for Lamont say they are casting their votes AGAINST Lieberman rather than for Lamont, which seems plausible.

And the third side story we'll have to suffer through is all the goofy spin from the anti-liberal blog forces out there, trying to portray bloggers as some sort of rogue, irresponsible, ...who knows.... some sort of bad scary people I guess, who somehow stepped in and sabotaged poor, poor, Joe Lieberman.


Joe sabotaged himself. All the bloggers did was see a chance to get Lieberman the hell out of congress, and worked to raise funds and organize in order to elect an opponent they felt more closely reflected their views.

Nothing sinister about that in my opinion.

But to many who don't know squat about blogging or bloggers, or to those in the print media and others who have a free-floating fear and/or resentment of blogging in general, it's a perfect opportunity to spread yet more uninformed crap to demean or denigrate bloggers. (as if they're some sort of monolithic "thing" that all think, act, and believe the same thing. Yeah, sure.)

This is not to say that bloggers can never be criicized legitmately, but rather that the carping about the role of bloggers in this particular contest has been routinely uninformed, unfairly generalized, and spurred too often by ulterior motives.

So... we'll see what the score is early tomorrow morning, and try to endure the pundits and blow-hards as they struggle to fill countless hours with the "larger ramifications" of the Lieberman-Lamont race. UGH.


At 8/08/2006 12:47 PM, Blogger Carl Nyberg said...

When Lieberman decided to run as both a Dem in the primary and an independent in the general election, he pretty much told everyone that his guiding principle was what's best for Joe Lieberman.

This move was so stupid it had to make normal people think Lieberman's judgment had become impaired. And who wants a judgment impaired Senator?

If Lieberman felt safe in the Dem primary, why raise the issue of running as an independent? And if Lieberman didn't feel safe in the Dem primary, how did he expect Dem voters to take his threat of running as an independent?

Lieberman expected to get treated like Pat Robertson did when he said God would take him home if he didn't get X number of dollars.

Dem voters who bought Lieberman's claim of being a loyal Democrat were given strong reason to question his loyalty when he threatened to bolt.

Lieberman should have done his polling and decided to run as a Dem or an independent.

He's a fool and soon Connecticut will be relieved of the burden of being represented by a fool.

At 8/08/2006 1:30 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Spot on Carl. Yet more reasons that the voters of Connecticut just have about had it with Joe.

This of course puts the "moderate" DLC type Dems into a tizzy, which I must admit gives me a degree of schadenfreude.

Their erroneously thinking that the Dem solution to everything is to continue moving to the right keeping just a bit to the left of Republicans, even though the Republicans have moved nearly off the right end of the spectrum is being shown to be the folly it is.

This might be bad for corporate Dems who perhaps reasonably believe that their only hope is in kissing up to corporate interests and the super rich even more effectively than Republicans.

But I simply think that's a horrid idea, one that the public sees right through and resents.

Dems who stand up and represent the views of so many people who've been ignored for so long will receive tremendous support.

The public is sick and tired of government by the highest bidder and wants some candidates who actually believe in something other than the almighty dollar and will start governing for the good of the many, not the fortunate few.

At 8/08/2006 3:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

TID, "schadenfreude?" I've got to admit my German is poor and when I speak it I sound like an American butchering German with a French accent, but does that mean something like "bittersweet happiness?"

The only "larger ramification" here is that Democrats in Connecticut will choose their nominee for Senate. Nothing wrong with that. Woulda been nice to have that luxury of that expression of democracy in our own congressional district.

The only ramification for Huck is that I may finally get auditory relief from Lieberman's droning uuhhhs between sentences.

At 8/08/2006 7:23 PM, Blogger nicodemus said...

Don't be naive. I agree with you in that the Democratic Party is "supposed" to be that way, but the truth is that it ain't and it will never be. To get to where you're going, we'd have to climb in the Wayback Machine and go to the old Populist Movement of 1892.

Flash forward 100 years: I attended the 1992 Democratic Convention in New York and I can assure you that the "party of the people" is rife with corporate money and influence. There are corporate sponsorships, there are luxury boxes and lobbyist swine all over the place. There was a swanky reception given by the Chicago Board of Trade.

Clinton and Gore were both products of the corporate DLC wing of the party. And it worked because the Blacks and the Poor and disfranchised actually believe Bill Clinton walks on water and he left with a 70% approval rating. (Labor conveniently forgets the fact that Bill Clinton signed NAFTA)

John Kerry and Hillary carry on the tradition of the money-inhaling "limo liberals". There is simply no getting away from "the ruling class" and the moneyed interests. And when Democrats start masquerading as populists, you better run the other way because it really is just a masquerade.

Also, I agree with you that pundits blow this computer stuff way out of proportion. After all, real working class people (and "Joe Sixpack" if you will).. they don't give two sh*ts about Blogs and Hacks and probably don't even know what they are. It's the sound we make when we get up in the morning!

At 8/08/2006 8:54 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Yep, Huck, you're right. Thank goodness the German's came up with a word for taking pleasure in someone else's misfortune or discomfort.

And I had to laugh out loud when you mentioned Lieberman's annoying drone. I've avoided bringing it up, as it is a bit petty, but oh my God, does it ever grate on my nerves. Glad to hear I'm not the only one.

At 8/08/2006 9:10 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Nico... that last line cracked me up! HA!! Good one!

At 8/08/2006 11:59 PM, Blogger Willy Nilly said...

It's been said many times "All politics are local" and that was what finished Liberman off. Sure the war is a factor, but Liberman was all about hisself and the national stage. Locals tire of that, especially in a small state like CT.

I caught Joe's consession on C-Span, the guy has no class. His speech tonight had to hurt him.

Out of touch, it gets you beat.

At 8/09/2006 6:19 AM, Blogger nicodemus said...

Even though I was for Lieberman, I don't think he should run as an Independent. In politics, I'd like to think there is such a thing as good sportsmanship and that means accepting the verdict of the voters. "You've got to know when to fold'em" (Hey, he did it in 2000, why should this be any different?)

I see a Supreme Court appointment in Lieberman's future.

At 8/09/2006 3:45 PM, Blogger Carl Nyberg said...

It is a sharp contrast between Lieberman's eagerness to give up to Bush/Cheney and his unwillingness to acknowledge defeat to Lamont.

It will be fun watching him lose again. The humiliation will be delicious.

At 8/09/2006 4:57 PM, Blogger IHG said...


Your comment about corporate (money and influence) politics is dead on. It is a shame when the cause of the people does not matter. Both parties stink. Neither party cares about the people.

We are all riding the SS-Screwjob and all they packed for us is a sh**burger sandwich.

Social Secuirty - nothing.
Healthcare - nothing.
Energy Plan - nothing.
Budget Deficits - nothing.
Border Control - nothing.

If we had half a brain, we'd throw them all out. BUT KNOW, we LOVE our own jackasses, it's everyone else' that is the problem!


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