September 15, 2008

Not that pretty at all.

America needs to know a little bit about those who are asking them to place them second in line to the most powerful position on the planet.

Thus far, the Republicans have clearly thought they had the perfect choice of candidate with which they could simply make it all up, stick to their stories, and hope no one would be able to report the truth. But just in case, they launched a massive coordinated effort to pre-emptively smear and denigrate "the press" in general, and anyone who asked just about anything as "sexist" and unfair.

But thank goodness, despite the McCain campaign manager saying they wouldn't allow Palin to be interviewed by any reporter unless they showed a proper amount of "deference" and respect towards Palin, apparently laboring under the delusion that this is a monarchy, some bits and pieces of reality are seeping through.

But try as they might to tighely manage the Palin myth, some truth is coming out.

Not that Palin and McCain's staff haven't tried. As noted in this revealing NY Times piece, a suitably icey fear of revealing any information about Palin has been cast over Alaska. The McCain forces have already gotten the message to the troops, ordering anyone who had any familiarity with Palin to not speak to any reporters, instructing them to refer them to the campaign or the governor's office, or simply refuse to respond or provide documents. Websites have been scoured and cleaned up, and the effort to hide the evidence is in full swing, including smear campaigns against those who might reveal the real Sarah.

Are you swallowing the idea of Palin as a "maverick" and "reformer"? Not so fast. She surrounded herself with cronies and appointed many high school classmates who were completely unqualified to high state offices while placeing a priority on loyalty and secrecy. (sound familiar?) and has a long track record of vilifying her opponents and using her office to punish enemies and reward friends. (Like all pols do, but not this blatantly and this extensivesly.)

Read the article and see if, rather and a reformer and "change agent", Palin doesn't sound alarmingly like a carbon copy of George Bush.

But an examination of her swift rise and record as mayor of Wasilla and then governor finds that her visceral style and penchant for attacking critics — she sometimes calls local opponents “haters” — contrasts with her carefully crafted public image.

Throughout her political career, she has pursued vendettas, fired officials who crossed her and sometimes blurred the line between government and personal grievance, according to a review of public records and interviews with 60 Republican and Democratic legislators and local officials.

Interviews show that Ms. Palin runs an administration that puts a premium on loyalty and secrecy. The governor and her top officials sometimes use personal e-mail accounts for state business; dozens of e-mail messages obtained by The New York Times show that her staff members studied whether that could allow them to circumvent subpoenas seeking public records.

Rick Steiner, a University of Alaska professor, sought the e-mail messages of state scientists who had examined the effect of global warming on polar bears. (Ms. Palin said the scientists had found no ill effects, and she has sued the federal government to block the listing of the bears as endangered.) An administration official told Mr. Steiner that his request would cost $468,784 to process.

When Mr. Steiner finally obtained the e-mail messages — through a federal records request — he discovered that state scientists had in fact agreed that the bears were in danger, records show.

“Their secrecy is off the charts,” Mr. Steiner said.
Ms. Palin ordered city employees not to talk to the press. And she used city money to buy a white Suburban for the mayor’s use — employees sarcastically called it the mayor-mobile.
Ms. Palin chose Talis Colberg, a borough assemblyman from the Matanuska valley, as her attorney general, provoking a bewildered question from the legal community: “Who?” Mr. Colberg, who did not return calls, moved from a one-room building in the valley to one of the most powerful offices in the state, supervising some 500 people.

"I called him and asked, 'Do you know how to supervise people?'" said a family friend, Kathy Wells. "He said, 'No, but I think I’ll get some help.' "

The Wasilla High School yearbook archive now doubles as a veritable directory of state government. Ms. Palin appointed Mr. Bitney, her former junior high school band-mate, as her legislative director and chose another classmate, Joe Austerman, to manage the economic development office for $82,908 a year. Mr. Austerman had established an Alaska franchise for Mailboxes Etc.
Many lawmakers contend that Ms. Palin is overly reliant on a small inner circle that leaves her isolated. Democrats and Republicans alike describe her as often missing in action. Since taking office in 2007, Ms. Palin has spent 312 nights at her Wasilla home, some 600 miles to the north of the governor’s mansion in Juneau, records show.
As Ms. Palin’s star ascends, the McCain campaign, as often happens in national races, is controlling the words of those who know her well. Her mother-in-law, Faye Palin, has been asked not to speak to reporters, and aides sit in on interviews with old friends.

At a recent lunch gathering, an official with the Wasilla Chamber of Commerce asked its members to refer all calls from reporters to the governor’s office. Dianne Woodruff, a city councilwoman, shook her head.

“I was thinking, I don’t remember giving up my First Amendment rights,” Ms. Woodruff said. “Just because you’re not going gaga over Sarah doesn’t mean you can’t speak your mind.”

P.S. Frank Rich essentially repeats my contention that this election, and those who vigorously support McCain (or anyone Republican) are simply voting out of a deep-seated fear that the white power structure is fading away, and desperately trying to stop the inevitable, they lash out almost pathologically. The very notion of change scares the hell out of them.


At 9/16/2008 8:01 PM, Blogger nicodemus said...

Stop playing the race card. You're the ones with a stadium of full 85,000 people and all this momentum. Remember?
I am for McCain because he's paid his dues and he is a good solid public servant and an independent.
He should have won in 2000. We're going to get it right this time. And I don't care if McCain is 100 years old, he is still sharp as a tack and vastly more qualified than Barack Obama. And I don't care what color he is. Period.

Your position is nothing more than sour grapes: Now that your candidate is on a downward spiral, "it must be only because Obama is Black and all of us McCain supporters are just a bunch of racist troglodytes who just don't know a good thing when we see it." I have a feeling that I will be hearing a lot of this garbage come Nov. 5th, should your guy come up short. How pathetic.

At 9/17/2008 11:40 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

No Nico, you're not being honest and you know it.

First of all, you're hurling that old crap "race card" that you people do every time anyone even mentions race at all. Everyone realizes it's your style to do this in retaliation for having been, usually correctly, faulted for thinly vieled racism in many, many instances. (Willie Horton, the Harold Ford "call me" ad, etc.)

Admit the obvious Nico, the Republican party is the party of racists. Period.

If someone is a racist, which party is he going to affiliate with and support? And why do you think this is?

I'll await your answer, even though something tells me it's not the Dems.

That's not to say that there's not racists in the Democratic party. Far from it. There's probably millions of Dems who are racist to one degree or another. And that cuts against Obama as well.

I've had dependable sources tell me that high ranking union members report overt racism against Obama among their members.

Nico, you can sit there and pretend that this is all a figment of my imagination, but you know it isn't.

I can't "look into your soul" as Bush did with Putin, and I'd never attempt to declare what your motives are in supporting McCain or opposing Obama. It very well have nothing to do with race. (though your repeated use of the term "Negro" here makes me skeptical.)

But that's beside the point. I'm making a larger point, and that is that there will be millions of voters who will shy away from Obama simply because of his race.

They may not love him, and they might not agree with everything he says. But .... if he were a white middle aged politician, and all things were equal, they'd realize that the country can't afford more of the same and they'd vote for him without reservation.

Because Obama is black, many people, even those who don't consider themselves racist in the slightest, are looking for reasons to go with the white guy.

They might not even be concious of their uneasiness about a black president, and that's why they seem so willing to fall for the flimsiest possible reasons to not vote for Obama.

And here's another reason I fell that racism will be to blame if Obama is not elected. And it's the question asked by everyone on both sides....

We've had 8 solid years of utter disaster under Republican rule. Republicans have had total control of our government and have enacted their ideological theories and we've now seen once again that they're complete failures and have brung sometimes catastrophic consequences, literally around the world.

John McCain, while not a carbon copy of Bush, still represents completely the fundemental philosophy and shares the exact same outlook on economics, war, health care, and other issues which are the issues most important to voters this year.

And he holds positions which are exactly the opposite of what a huge majority of citizens favor.

So why is the race even close?

Good question. And I guarantee you that race has a large part in it.

People would literally vote to continue down a path which has lead to nothing but problems for them and the country, rather than deal with their irrational racial fears.

Are you going to tell me that's not true?

At 9/18/2008 4:26 PM, Blogger nicodemus said...

Well actually the Democrats have a great deal of racism in their history. I don't even know where to begin. It was the Democratic Party in the South who made Blacks into second class citizens (at best) through the Jim Crow Laws. It was the Democrats in the Old South who vehemently fought the Civil Rights Bill in the 1960s. It was that great "progressive" Democrat Woodrow Wilson who was against a federal anti-lynching law. Wilson believed Blacks were inferior and should be kept separate and as president of Princeton University, denied them admission based on race. Okay, FDR and the New Deal coalition was good for Blacks and everybody. I like FDR. LBJ and JFK - good for Blacks. Nixon- good for Blacks, as some Blacks have told me. A mixed bag so let's not just say that "Republicans are inherently racist and that is why Obama might lose" That is wild generalization.

If Obama falls short, don't whine about racism. Obama has a shitload of white support. No, if he loses it will be for other reasons, reasons which are obvious. That he is simply unqualified. He needs to get more experience.

Something to think about: 95% Blacks are for Obama. Some have told me "I'm for Obama, I stick with my own kind". We think nothing of that.... What if I went around saying: "I am for McCain because I stick with my own kind".

At 9/18/2008 7:11 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Before you join the Republican party, do they make you take a test to see how well you can make shit up and say it with a straight face?

It seems so.

You're telling me that you've actually spoken to a black person who told YOU, that they were "sticking with their own kind"?? whew.. that's a whopper.

Just say what you think, you don't have to put the words in some ficticious person's mouth.

Your point seems to be that there are a lot of blacks who will vote for Obama because he's partly black.

OK. Let's examine this, shall we?

Yes, there's no doubt that millions of blacks will vote for Obama in whole or in part because he's the same race.

Now, let's think a little further.

How many of those blacks would have voted for the Democratic candidate no matter if he was some paunchy white guy?

I'd say at least 95%. Why? Because they KNOW which party represents their interests and helping them achieve a piece of the American dream. Hint: It ain't the Republicans.

So there goes 90% of your argument.

Now lets examine the difference between a white person voting for McCain purely because he's white, and a black person voting for Obama purely because he's black.

This is where you seem to go off the rails. I'll try to make it simple.

How many black presidents have we had in the 241 years this country has existed?

None, correct? Ever. Not in TWO HUNDRED AND FOURTY YEARS.

How many white presidents have we had? Well, the simple answer is, all of them, but that's 43.

So you're a white guy sitting there whining your ass off about blacks voting for another black when it's the FIRST TIME IN TWO HUNDRED AND FOURY YEARS that they've even had the opportunity to do so? When thousands of their people have been lynched, beaten, jailed, and abused over two centuries, when dozens of people literally gave their lives to bring them some measure of dignity as American citizens?

And you're whining that a black person voting for a black man for the first time in history is just as bad as a white racist voting for McCain because he's WHITE??

Do you see the problem here?

Do you realize how ridiculous it is to even TRY to compare the two?

Your entire argument is ridiculous, period.

A. Most blacks would have voted Dem anyway.
B. Blacks have never had the chance to vote for a black man for president in over TWO CENTURIES.

So the sort of thinly veiled racism you defend is disgusting and your charge of reverse racism is as phony as a $3 bill.

Yeah.. pity the poor white candidate, with around 80% of the population white and nearly 100% of the ruling class both political and economic, all white.

Pity that guy. Because some blacks might want to see a black guy elected president for the first time ever.

You're arguing that a racist voting for McCain because he doesn't want a black guy as president is the same as a black person voting for Obama because he DOES want a black guy for president.

One's negative... voting AGAINST a black guy simply due to the color of his skin, while the other is positive, voting FOR a person because of their race.

One voter cast their vote in order to deny a black person the presidency, the other cast their vote to deny one more white guy from being elected president.

Now I'll gladly admit that many whites are voting for McCain for various reasons that don't have to do with race, such as the so-called pro-life zealots, etc.

But I'm talking specifically about those who, whether conciously or subconciously, are voting for the white guy because they've bought into the "scary black guy" bullshit which taps into their inner racist tendencies and fears.

So the score is so far, white candidates, every single time, black candidates, 0. And you're begrudging blacks that might want to vote for a black guy the first time they've ever had the chance?

It's mind boggling that people think that way when it makes no sense.

At 9/21/2008 8:47 PM, Blogger nicodemus said...

Well, Obama was not the first Black presidential candidate. Douglas Wilder, Shirley Chisholm, and Jesse Jackson all came before him. Shirley and Jesse actually went through the primaries and got delegates and went as far as the conventions. Blacks could have voted for Shirley and Jesse and many did. Analysts also forget how in the 1988 primaries, Jesse was starting to attract "White working class" blue collar voters as well, when he addressed economic issues.

But as Joe Biden once said, Obama is the first"clean and mainstream" Black, whatever the hell that means.

Yes, most Blacks would have voted for the Democrat in the end. Probably with less enthusiasm than Obama, as I am sure you'll agree. Yes, you are right that this because of the Democratic platform, i.e. welfare programs. But also because Blacks are a voting bloc "controlled" by big city political machines. Chicago for example is full of ward bosses, both Black and White, who tell these people how to vote and "turn out da vote" (or keep them home, depending on who pays them off).

And I know you will want to write a long diatribe over what constitutes "welfare" and you'll talk about corporate handouts and bailouts and how that is much larger. Ok, so what....I won't argue that. I am just referring to why the Blacks vote Democratic in the last 40 years.

Lynchings were a terrible thing and so was the denial of Civil Rights. It is unfortunate that Southern Democrats upheld this racist, segregationist system for so many years. That great progressive Democrat, President Woodrow Wilson who opposed a federal law against lynching.

Before the Black constituency was bought off in modern times, they did support the Republican Party, whose abolitionist heritage is something to be proud of.

I cannot speak for all Caucasians, only myself. I am voting for McCain because I believe he should have been elected 8 years ago, I think he would have been a good president then and I think he'd be good now. He is a solid public servant who has paid his dues. He is tough and he is presidential and he is an independent thinker. By contrast, I think Obama is a lightweight.

That is just my opinion. You can disagree vehemently, but my opinion has nothing to do with race. I would have easily supported Condie Rice had she run.

At 9/22/2008 3:48 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Again Nico,
I think you're overgeneralizing things.

It really is racist to, as you plainly do, assume that all blacks are on welfare somehow. That's just disgusting and backwards and frankly, kind of stupid.

The reality is that there are more whites on welfare than blacks, and that has been the case for decades. Yet you and others constantly buy into this bullshit that blacks are all on welfare and vote Dem because Dems don't want to cut off every social program that exists.

The fact remains as well that it was a DEMOCRAT who drastically reformed welfare, Bill Clinton, NOT a Republican.

And yes, there's a lot of urban blacks. But again, think of how ignorant your statements are. There are one hell of a lot more urban WHITES, yet you, in your ridiculous insistance on stereotyping blacks, seem to think that most blacks are:

On Welfare
and live in the ghettos of large cities.

Gee. Wonder why anyone would suspect you of being racist?

Could it be that attitude?

You know as well as anyone that your stereotype is utterly false and not true in the slightest.

Tell you what, Nico. Walk up to the next black you meet and ask them if they're on welfare. Ask 'em if they vote Dem because they want more welfare. And ask them if the politicians around her tell them how to vote as if they're children or pay them to vote Dem.

Then go get your broken nose fixed.

Do you see how wrong your assumptions and generalizations are?

And no, all those blacks you listed were NOT presidential candidates, they were presidential primary candidates. As I said repeatedly, and which you apparently missed, is that Obama is the first chance any blacks have had to actually vote for a black man to be president. Not just the nominee.

So all that argument is off the mark.

As is the old, tired, and entirely false argument that it's the Democratic party that's racist.

You can recite the history of the racist south until you're blue in the face, and recount all the racist, segregationist Dems of 70 years ago or more.

But the fact remains, Nico, and you certainly know better, that it was Strom Thurmond who led those very same racist assholes OUT of the Democratic convention and they moved en masse to the REPUBLICAN party.

And when Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act, he recognized that he'd just handed the entire south to the REPUBLICANS. He was right.

THE RACIST SEGREGATIONISTS all became Republicans and have been an enormously powerful bloc within the Republican party for longer than many people have been alive.

Now you've said a lot to lead me to suspect you're living a few decades behind the rest of us, but it's now the 21st century, and the Democrats have consistently lost the racist south for decades.

Trying to use evidence of racist Dems from 60 freaking years in the past is just ...well.. NONSENSE.

And you know it.

When David Duke, the grand whatever it is of the Ku Klux Klan decided to run for Governor down south, which party did he run with?

That's right.

So spare me that lame argument you folks trot out like grandma's old quilt to suggest it's not Republicans who are racist.

The entire thing is bullshit.


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