February 19, 2008

What the...?!

I was watching yesterday's episode of "Hardball" when Chris Matthew's began the show by introducing the topic of the Clinton campaign's rather desperate attempt to cry plagiarism against Obama for having used some catch phrases that had also been used by his close friend and ally and Massachusetts governor, Deval Patrick.

Patrick issued a statement saying he didn't mind a bit, that he and Obama often trade thoughts and ideas and that he'd used some of Obama's phrases in the past. The Obama campaign also cited several instances of where Clinton had cadged phrases that Obama had used first as well.

As a matter of fact, Obama is shown on tape on at least one occasion actually saying, "as my good friend Deval Patrick puts it...." before he uses the phrase about "just words" that are in question.

This didn't stop Pitchfork Pat from trying to insist that this was just as bad, just the same, as when Joe Biden was caught plagiarising nearly word for word a huge chunk of a speech from British labor party leader Neil Kinnock. This happened early into Biden's previous run for president, and it sunk his campaign.

One, borrowing a phrase from a close friend and supporter, one directly stealing the written words of a politician you've never met. Yes, there is a difference.

Now with visions of Biden dancing in their heads, folks like Buchannon, who knows better, and the Clinton campaign, who knows better too, are trying to make this phoney charge stick.

It wasn't unexpected for Matthews to discuss the issue, but the graphic shown to introduce the topic sure was.

Later in the show, Matthews briefly said the graphic was "a mistake" and appologized.

Gee, ya think? But seriously, what's going on at MSNBC? That's one hell of a "mistake". Was the graphics editor drunk? The obviously got the text correct, so who's idea of funny was it to put up Osama's picture?

Oh, I get it, Osama.... Obama... hey, they sound alike. VERY funny. Oh, make them stop.

Kind of ironic that as Matthews and Pat Buchanon were raking Obama over the coals for what amounts to a big nothing burger, saying he should be more careful about making mistakes, Matthew's own show is getting this slopppy.

But later in the show, Matthews made up for any misdeeds by running this picture and heroically refraining from any snide remarks.

Finally, Bush getting the respect he deserves during his tour of Africa.


At 2/19/2008 11:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that Karl Rove had it correct..."it's not a big deal, it just shows that he (Obama) got a little lazy."

At 2/19/2008 12:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, this is a minor issue - a silly oversight.

I think the bigger issue when one speaks of 'words' is the comment that Michele Obama made...



Understand that this was a scripted comment made at a rally. This was undoubtedly a comment that was looked at, if not written, by the campaign.

Words mean something - especially when you are the frontrunner, or the nominee.

At 2/19/2008 6:37 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

So now it's a sin to not be proud of your country's government?

That'll be news to the millions who aren't and haven't been for some time.

At 2/19/2008 8:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for writing what's been on my mind.

As you pointed out, there's a huge difference between outright plagiarism and simply quoting someone else. In the writing world, we see it every day; we are aware that when we give credit to the original poster, writer, etc., it means those words (or phrase, paragraph, etc.) belong to someone else, however as you know, when we steal written or verbal words from an article or a speech without giving credit, we are (as writers or bloggers) taking credit for something that doesn't belong to us, thus leaving our readers believing we are the original authors. Obama did nothing of the sort - he gave credit to the original source. There's no "scandal" here at all.

As far as Chris Matthews and the "mistake" go, this was by far, no "mistake" at all. In fact, the entire act reeks of a lack of journalistic integrity.

At 2/19/2008 8:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To never have been proud of your Country?

Were you not proud when millions of people came to the aid of the victims of 9-11?

When thousands upon thousands of Americans traveled and millions donated to help the victims of Hurricane Katrina?

When we freed Kuwait after Sadam attacked?

(Whether or not one agrees with the war in Iraq presently) When the statue of Sadam tumbled?

When hundreds of thousands of Iraqiis voted in a Democratic election, with purple thumbs held high - because of our efforts?

When we came together as a Country after 9-11.

How we went into Bosnia?

Nothing to be proud of through the 8-years of the Clinton Administration?

Are you telling me that Michele Obama (and others) cannot find one of these issues to gain even just a smidge of pride in the United States?

Goodness - if this is the case, why live here? Why not go somewhere where one can find reason to have pride in the country.

The problem that this creates (and your debating the issue makes it far more than perception) -

The perception that liberals really do not love the United States. And your comment of 6:37 doesn't help the liberal cause in this respect.

At 2/19/2008 11:33 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 8:26,

Let's see... pround of my government...


Definitely no, the government was attrocious in providing aid, and still is.

Rescuing billionaire shieks who preside over a dictatorial country with slave labor and where women are treated worse than cattle? Not so much.

No. The statue being pulled down was a dumb PR stunt. It was later proven that what looked like crowds was only a handful of Iraqi's rounded up to stage the event. They were also seen at other similar events. Also, when the soldier draped the U.S. flag over Sadaam's head, it served more to inflame resistance than anything else.

It was a dumb PR stunt and did nothing to make me proud of my government whatsoever, especially in light of the fact that thousands of innocents had been slaughtered in order to stage this little stunt so folks like you could swell with pride.

No, definitely not proud of my government there. As has been proven, those elections weren't worth the ink they dipped their fingers into. It again was trumpeted as proof that we'd brought democracy to Iraq. That's utterly false as everyone knows.

You're repeating yourself, and no, that had nothing to do with our government. As a matter of fact, Bush and Rove decided to squander all this good will and a once in a lifetime opportunity to draw the country together in favor of cravenly exploiting the deaths of thousands for their political gain.
I was not only not proud of my government, I was appalled and ashamed that they did nothing to bring us together in that moment, but rather got busy creating divisions and trying to scare us.

A little. That seemed to be a just humanitarian mission. And as we've seen, it was a great success.

I'm sure there were a few things worthy of being pround of our government for, perhaps Clinton's mission to Africa and AIDS relief, etc.

I'm not Michelle Obama. Sorry.

Good question. One that many people have asked themselves more than once since 2000.

You can use that bullshit arguement all you want, and just have. If you insist on engaging in blatantly ridiculous over-simplification and exageration, then have at it. People are sick to death of it, and that's why you and your party are going down the tubes.

The fact remains that if the Dems didn't love their country, they wouldn't give a damn and would likely just meekly go along with every idiotic and destructive measure Bush & Co. have taken, much as you do.

Why do you hate America and not want to improve it? Why do you sit still while your government feeds you an unending line of bull and refuse to call them on it and demand better? Why do you sit in approval as they rip the constitution to shreds, thumb their noses at congress and the concept of balance of powers, and run the country as if they own it and it's none of our damn business what they do?

That's not patriotic in the slightest.

At 2/20/2008 7:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Justify all you want, but the quote the specific statement from Michele Obama was -


And you defended the comment.

Again, this points directly to the perception/ reality that Liberals do not like their country and that they are nothing more than complainers and haters.

At 2/20/2008 6:38 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon, 7:51

You can stick your fingers in your ears and go "naayah nyahhhn nayaaah" all you want and keep trying to distort the meaning of Michelle Obama's remark, but it's still dead wrong.

Secondly, you're a total boob for somehow suggesting that MY opinion therefore reflects the thinking of every single liberal in the country.

Really, when you have to make that extreme a reach, you've already lost.

I'd also point out that you have to take a phrase out of context to try to make your ridiculous suggestion.

In order to try to make something out of nothing, you neglect to notice that what she was talking about at the time was the enormous and REAL excitment and momentum, the record shattering turnout, both at rallies, as well as at the polls, something that is absolutely unprecidented in her adult lifetime.

She was proud of her country for getting involved and motivated and for casting aside issues of race and answering Obama's call for a new way of conducting politics.

This is clear to anyone, but it's far easier to take it out of context and jump on someone simply because she made a slip and choose the wrong words to express herself.

And if you want to play that game, I suggest you think twice. You're the one who thinks Bush is brilliant and your party has a guy like McCain out there, who's justifiably famous for saying really nasty and semi-crazy stuff, and as opposed to Michelle Obama, there's no doubt about what he meant.

At 2/20/2008 9:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Distort Michele Obama's comments? She was very clear and very deliberate in what she said. She said,


I can certainly appreciate why you want to pull the revisionist history and turn this into 'proud of my government' - but that is not what she said.

At 2/20/2008 10:37 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

You know what, moron? I'm about THIS close to simple ignoring every single dumb-ass argument for argument's sake comment.

I've long since tired of your utter deafness to anything anyone else has to say, and your utterly stupid insistence on repeating yourself as if I'd never refuted or completely wrecked your argument.

This is the last time I'm going to try to help you out, little Jimmy.

AS I SAID BEFORE, you can't make your phoney B.S. argument without taking one phrase out of context.

Contrary to your bone-headed insistence on pretending that Michelle Obama got up before a crowd and uttered ONE SENTENCE, which you now are trying desperately to distort, what she actually said, IN CONTEXT, is this:

"What we have learned over this year is that hope is making a comeback. It is making a comeback. And let me tell you something -- for the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country. And not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change. And I have been desperate to see our country moving in that direction and just not feeling so alone in my frustration and disappointment. I've seen people who are hungry to be unified around some basic common issues, and it's made me proud."

As someone so mindlessly frustrated by your belief system falling down around you, you've long since lost the moral ability to be honest when attempting to lash out at whatever today's perceived threat might be.

I plainly explained that when taken in context, it was clear what she was trying to say.

Your response was, "BUT SHE SAID BLAH BLAH!!!"

Yeah. But without any context to infer meaning, your little quote doesn't mean what you hope to mislead people into thinking it means.

You're grasping at straws, my man.

You utterly ignore my pointing out that in context, the line didn't mean she hadn't had pride in her country at all.

But that's what people do when they don't have a damn leg to stand on. They just keep yelling the same stupid thing, ignoring the facts, and hoping that someone might be stupid enough to fall for it.

You're just following the same tactic the Republicans have used for over a decade.

Sucks for you that people are finally on to it.

Michelle Obama, as clearly shown by her actual words in context, meant that for the first time in her adult life, she was proud of what the country was doing, that they were finally engaged, and participating and ready to make the country more hopeful, more positive, and to climb out of the moral muck that Bush and the Republicans have drug us down in to these past 7 years.

She could have said it in a better way, obviously.

It seems clear to me, and to anyone with an open mind, that what she intended to say is that she'd never been MORE proud of her country, but instead she said it the wrong way.

For a guy who backs a president who shows barely a passing familiarity with the English language, you'd think you'd be more forgiving.

For instance, what did Bush mean when he said, ""Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." —Washington, D.C., Aug. 5, 2004

According to you, I should just keep braying, Bush said, THEY NEVER STOP THINKING ABOUT NEW WAYS TO HARM OUR COUNTRY AND NEITHER DO WE!!!!!

Would I be really responsible or honest if I seriously sat here and tried to insist that Bush really never stops thinking of ways to harm our country? (He probably delegates that chore.)

In short, you're nothing but a dim witted pest, and you've long ago ceased bringing anything to the table.

And if you keep wasting your time and readers by sending in crap like this, expect to be ignored.


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