February 24, 2008

Random thoughts on the campaign

Clinton is apparently using Captain Kangaroo's suit designer.

Obama is left handed and clutches his pen/pencil between his thumb and forefinger.

In a typical Midwestern manner, Obama pronounces the word "to as "ta". As in "We need ta bring lower costs ta health care."

The press is determined to denigrate and dismiss Clinton at every opportunity and ascribe calculating or negative motives to literally everything she does, says, or even appears to be doing or saying.

Pundits nauseatingly leaped on her for the touching moment at the end of the most recent debate in which she sincerely professed how honored she was to be running along side Obama, immediately suggesting that it must mean that she had given up entirely and was resigned that she'd lost the race, or saying that it was all just an act, a calculated move to generate "pity" votes.

And these were the same pundits who have whined long and loud demanding that Clinton be "more human" and show her "real" side, connect to audiences and stop being so scripted.

And this is what happens when she does.

It's truly gross in it's cynicism and unfairness. There seems to be a rule that you must NOT give Clinton a break.

In the foggy distant past (11 days ago) the day after the Potomac primaries and when Clinton still held a slight lead over Obama, I flatly stated that Obama would win both the nomination and the presidency. I still believe what will be the case, but a part of me enjoys the thought of Clinton actually becoming the nominee.

Not because I think she will be, but because it would prove literally ALL the pundits and people in Democratic politics dead wrong.

Almost across the board, they share a secret fear that Clinton, with her high negatives, would galvanize the right and rally the Republicans into a massive effort to defeat her, with a good chance that they would.

But this is utterly wrong-headed, as has been previously proven.

The idea I secretly relish is that Hillary and Bill would be right out there in their faces as the Democratic nominee.

This would most certainly inspire a near rabid reaction from the right, to be sure. On this they're right.

But what they fail to realize is that the Clinton's literally drive the right OUT OF THEIR MINDS.

Through decades of hate campaigns and the circulation of stories and myths matched in their utter fiction only by the level of hateful gullibility with which they've been adopted as fact by the mouth-breathing right, these people would literally come unglued if Hillary were poised to take the White House.

We all know what this would mean.

It would mean that they'd go way, way, WAYYYY overboard, be unable to resist putting out things that were SO ugly, SO unbelievable, SO preposterous and hateful, that it would blow up in their faces.

Hillary, of course, would sail along above it all, and with every salvo of increasingly insane attacks they'd launch, the more she'd serenely and confidently brush it aside and continue to focus on winning.

And every time she'd escape their rabid unhinged attacks, they'd only spend MORE millions and get MORE extreme and literally insane in their rage and hatred.

And in the end, the public would reject these efforts by rich, radical nut-cases, and soundly and clearly reject their negative and hateful "politics of the past" which treats them like idiots, and the American voters would elect Clinton president of the United States, partly as a clear rejection of the cynical and demeaning Republican style of division, distortion, and lies.

Yeah, that would have a certain deliciousness.

Too bad it won't happen.

Ralph Nader announced that he's running for president for the third time around this morning on Meet the Press.

I'm not sure how I feel about it at the moment, but I will say something radical, which is that Ralph Nader is most definitely NOT a radical. He's perfectly rational, his issues are perfectly important and relevant, and he has every right to put them forward if none of the two party candidates wants to do so.

I share his sense of outrage at the clear efforts of the two parties to raise artificially high bars to allowing third party candidates to either get on the ballot, or if they achieve that, to participate in debates.

The transcript of a portion of Nader's own words from today's Meet the Press appear below.

In the meantime, you can find out everything you ever wanted to know about Nader and what he's fighting for at www.votenader.org.


At 2/25/2008 8:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When Mrs. Clinton was campaigning in Iowa my 5 year old son turned to me and said "That lady needs to go on "What not to Wear" on tv". I could not have agreed with him more.

At 2/26/2008 12:12 AM, Blogger tiz said...

As you said, it won't happen. But if Hillary gets the nom she will lose to McCain for reasons that have been beat to death (tearing her own party up to get the nom and all). But let's assume she did pull it off and became president. You're right - the far right would go absolutely apeshit. We would see a replay of the 90s complete with some uber-conservative blowhard capitalizing on the rabid hate to win in 2016.

I'm not saying this would not happen if Obama won but I'm willing to give him a shot. I don't agree at all with the thinking of the far right but I do know they hate the Clintons every bit as much as us progressives hate W.

The reason the press has a field day with HRC is because she's a phoney. The lady in NH who asked the "tear" question ended up voting for Obama because of the way Hillary flipped back immediately to candidate mode. When she lost here in Iowa it was because people who work at night couldn't caucus. When Obama got union support in Nevada her surrogates went to court to stop at-work caucuses. Her campaign has pulled the "Muslim" shit at least twice now behind the scenes and then has a nice scripted "touching" moment at the end of the debate. Obama is a politician too and has gotten his fair amount of below the belt licks in but Hillary is quickly becoming the Democratic answer to Mitt Romney. The press (and McCain for that matter) ate old Mitt alive because he is a phoney, and so is Hillary Clinton. Hillary hasn't flip-flopped nearly as much on issues but I think there's a lot of similarities in how their campaigns have been run.

Speaking of Nader, I am afraid if the above scenario plays out he will most likely have my vote. I've *tried* to learn to like Clinton again but don't see myself getting there. It would suck because I would have to explain all of this to my daughter someday.

I guess what I'm saying is I wouldn't share in your enjoyment. Apologies for the rant. :)

At 2/26/2008 11:28 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...


Rants that are well put and have a point are welcome. Don't sweat it.

And again, the right would massively overplay their hand, reveal their horribly hateful nature, and turn off the entire country.

I'm not sure their millions could effectively cut Hillary down to the point where she lost support.

If anything, it would sicken so many people, people who are clearly ALREADY tired of their brand of non-sense, that I don't see them having a leg-up at gaining back the White House in 2012 simply because of a boomerang effect against Hillary.

Your thoughts about Clinton made me realize this as well...

If someone as established, very popular, and viewed as the enevitable Dem nominee for nearly a decade now simply pales, sputters, and is reduced to half her size by simply being in a race against Obama, just imagine what McCain will look like by comparison?

In other words, if Obama has enough wattage to cause Hillary to lose traction and implode, just imagine what it will be like when voters are presented with McCain and Obama side by side.

It could potentially be a rout.

At 2/26/2008 2:06 PM, Blogger Benton Harbor said...

Dope... first off, I loved the Captain Kangaroo costume designer reference! Perhaps we're both showing our ages.

Now, about HRC getting the nomination, I agree with Tiz about HRC being a phoney. Although there are plenty of examples to look at, the best evidence was this past Sunday on Meet the Press. Referencing Hillary's blasting of Obama about plagiarizing parts of his speech, Russert showed Hillary doing the exact same thing. While is was fairly close to Edwards' "good-bye" verbage, it was an almost word-for-word duplication of a speech her husband gave. Talk about "the pot calling the kettle black!" Granted, anything goes in love, war and politics... and that's exactly what this whole season has been.

Yes, the extreme right will have a field day should Hillary get the nomination. But I'm sure the extreme left is ready to unload on McCain when he's "officially" the Republican candidate.

I agree with you that whatever action is taken by the right will probably not erode Hillary's support. But I think her own actions have, and are, doing that. And the fact that her campaign has "mis-managed" her message and image hasn't helped either.

My own feelings are that America is tired of Washington insiders. Hillary and McCain are exactly that. While I'm not totally sold on Obama, and I don't agree with a few of his "changes," I like the fact that he is bringing new thoughts and voters into the fold. His record, or perhaps lack of a record, will certainly bring on the attack dogs, though.

Nader makes sense with much of what he's said about Washington NOT listening to its constituents. Is he electible? I don't think so. But then, I didn't think Jesse Ventura would get elected as governor of Minnesota, either.

It certainly is going to be an "entertaining" few more weeks. I'm looking forward to watch the Ohio debate.

At 2/27/2008 12:23 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Well said, BH. And indeed the Ohio debate should be interesting.

At 2/27/2008 6:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

All progress is change,

but not all CHANGE is progress.

At 2/28/2008 12:38 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 6:43

Thanks for your deep thought.

Your point is...???

At 2/29/2008 7:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The point is that everyone is jumping on the Obama bandwagon - because they are sick of Washington/ politicians and they want CHANGE.

Unfortunately, Obama's change is extreme left - left of Teddy Kennedy - what little of his change that he has actually stated. His change likely will not be 'progress.'

It'll be interesting to see where Nader fits in, as he now is the candidate about real - CHANGE. As McCain goes head-to-head with Obama and defines (which Obama's record clearly shows) him as left of Teddy (which Hillary cannot do) - and a face is put on 'CHANGE'...

At 3/01/2008 2:47 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

You know what anon 7:54,

I'd bet my last dollar that you, despite your rock solid assertion and repetition of the dubious claim that Obama is to the left of Ted Kennedy (whatever the hell that's supposed to mean) that you couldn't produce any demonstration or evidence to clearly show that if someone had a gun to your head.

You're simply parroting something you read and believed without having seen one single shred of evidence, aren't you?

This entire crazy tactic by Republicans leaves me perplexed.

First of all, what exactly makes Ted Kennedy the supposed liberal of all liberals? Because he's worked for health care for all? Or rather that he's stood up to the right wing for so long and therefore they need to tar him as something?

What exactly makes Ted Kennedy the most raving liberal in the Senate? Again, I'd bet the farm you really can't say.

So since you aren't even familiar with Kennedy's record, you're just trying to use him as some evil radical liberal, which he clearly isn't and has never been.

Then you're taking it one step further and trying to tar Obama with the same brush, again without the slightest idea what you're talking about.

I'll take that all back if you can point to enough evidence that shows clearly that Obama is any more liberal than half the Senate or Congress, much less THE most liberal Senator. (which is simply laughable.)

Again, you're both falling for, and trying to spread, the Republican boogie-man bull crap about anyone that would oppose their failed policies which benefit the very few at the expense of the many.

And even making the enormous leap required to believe that Obama is some sort of flaming liberal, the most liberal senator in America.....

Then it must mean, as I've always believed, that Americans are WAY WAY WAY WAY WAAAAAAY more "liberal" than most people, and especially political pundits and consultants, think.

If he's "Mr. Liberal", then there are one hell of a lot of liberals out there.

At 3/03/2008 8:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What there are - is a lot of people that have bought into the 'PR/ Rock-Star' gig.

It'll be a fun campaign, because Obama speaks of 'no red-states, no blue-states' but his votes, when indeed he does vote, are 100% along party lines. It is McCain that gets grief from his Party for voting against their positions.

Obama talks non-partisan - McCain acts in such a manner.

Obama talks change, yet produces none. McCain, again, to the chagrin of many - acts upon change.

And when all is done and said, Iraq is going well and likely will continue to go well. This will show tremendous 'judgement' for McCain being for the Surge - and Obama was against the Surge (poor judgement).

It will indeed be interesting when Obama finds a campaign when the other side can actually throw punches (which Hillary cannot).

At 3/03/2008 11:22 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 8:01.

Why you're wrong.

First, Obama is pledging to work towards change, not saying that he's changed things in his short time in the senate, which, after all, would be impossible. He has, however, worked on a few bills which have changed things a great deal, such as ethics reform.

Secondly, if you buy the line that things are going well in Iraq, you're simply not paying attention, period.

They are NOT going well, despite the fact that Republicans will try mightily to move the goal posts and lower the standards of "success" so low it's ridiculous.

The country is still far, far worse off than it was before our invasion, and shows no signs whatsoever of approaching anything resembling any sort of stability or progress.

This simply will not change anytime soon, and I personally believe it never will unless the U.S. presence in Iraq is fundementally altered.

The Bush approach is a miserable failure, and McCain simply represents continuing with that same failed approach.

Bring on that debate, which Obama will win every time.

McCain is "non-partisan"' in your view? That's a laugh.

Just because you see that the policies of your party are incredibly wrong, crooked, greedy, or simply immoral doesn't make you somehow magically "non-partisan". It simply indicates that there are many aspects of the Republicans actions that even John McCain can't stomach, much to his credit.

If more Republicans had stood up to the extremist loons, economic, foreign policy, and religious, that have messed up the party, then they wouldn't be poised to lose everything this year.

But advocating wasting countless more BILLIONS on a useless and unjustified war vs. working to find a way out, with the economy tanking and nearly everyone feeling the pinch?

Don't bet on McCain. Just sayin'.

At 3/04/2008 7:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

TID, if you believe that things are not better in Iraq since the Surge, then you are not worth having a discussion with.

Everyone understands this - even the Democrats, even CNN. Even Obermann. Violence is down, deaths are down, there is far greater control.

Is Iraq better off than before the war - of course, that is a matter of perspective, a matter of opinion. But the fact that things are better after the surge - sorry, you are just too great an ideologue and no better than Rush Limbaugh that will defend your Party on anything.

At 3/04/2008 9:23 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 7:35

You're dead wrong, don't know the facts, and are lying. How's that?

Name any Dem or quote from Olberman that says "the surge is working"?

If you consider a temporary lull in violent death that will immediately jump back up the minute the troops are withdrawn to be a "success", you're nothing but a brain-dead Republican dupe.

There has been NO progress in any sort of reconsiliation, NO progress politically, NO progress at moving even an inch towards a stable government or power sharing.

In short, there's been no success at all.

So violent deaths went down maybe 10% because troops are all over a few neighborhoods in Bagdhad. So the hell what?

As soon as they leave, it's back to business.

THIS is why you blindly believe the "surge is working"????

I'm not basing this on any ideology, but rather something you're all too willing to ignore, namely, reality.

Reality as in facts. As in accepting what is actually happening, as in believing what you see with your own eyes and hear with your own ears.

Based on facts provided by the military, those actually THERE, and soldiers themselves.

It is NOT a success in any way, yet you persist in trying to convince the unknowing into believing something that is patently false.

Are you proud of this habit?

In nearly 7 years, the country has been destroyed, blown apart, millions of refugees have fled and are suffering, hundreds of thousands of bodies litter the country and millions have been maimed and psychologically damaged for the rest of their lives.

And you point to a temporary lull in bloody violence and proclaim that we're winning?

Don't you have any shame?

Frankly, you're a joke.


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