Democrats & Liberals Archives

Barack's celebrity: It's just code

Inspiration is a funny thing; it can be the smallest mannerism, a gesture, a word or in larger sense, a shared experience. And when Barack Obama gave his historic acceptance speech at the Democratic convention thousands, if not, millions of people were positively inspired. Unfortunately, some in the media were inspired in another way.

Instead of being inspired like the millions and millions of children of color that now see a pathway for greatness; some saw and described Barack Obama’s inspirational and generationally important speech as just another concert event.

Instead of praise for a new type of populist leader, cable news outlets began, almost immediately following the speech, insinuating that Barack’s display was nothing more than another example of his celebrity.

Tossing out words like ‘celebrity’, to the untrained ear, is all about rock star status or film credibility; but it’s not. Ronald Reagan certainly was a celebrity before went into politics, but media outlets weren’t claiming his celebrity status when he was running. But when the media uses celebrity to describe Obama, they do so in a disparaging manner.

Diminishing Obama’s message by reducing his speech to just another concert event or tying Obama with the likes of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton is code. For in Barack Obama’s case, when the media mentions ‘celebrity’ it is merely code for subtle racism.

What they are actually saying is that black Americans, no matter how credentialed, no matter how intelligent, no matter how educated and socially dedicated, that black Americans, as Barack is one, will be nothing more than just an entertainer. No more than Michael Jordon. No more than Bill Cosby. And no more than O. J. Simpson.

What a shame that the political process has evolved to this level of racism. The evolution from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s ‘I have a dream’ speech in 1963 to Barack Obama’s inspirational Presidential acceptance speech in 2008 should be heralded for its historical context.

Unfortunately, for some in the media, they found a different subtle message.

Inspiration is truly a funny thing.

Posted by john trevisani at August 29, 2008 9:55 AM
Comments
Comment #259982

>The only think Obama supporters can come up with and have been using for the past 6 months is that anyone who disagrees with Obama must be a racist?Two posts in a row with the same talking point…

F*** YOU. And to call upon King while pushing this racist theme is a slap in the face of what he stood for.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 29, 2008 10:01 AM


I wonder how many times you have disparaged others for remarks like this in threads all over this site…

You cite nothing to back up your attack, and you use general attack terms, and you use vulger words. How hypocritical…

Posted by: Marysdude at August 29, 2008 11:10 AM
Comment #259983

john,

That celebrity thing has worn pretty thin. It was a political lie to begin with, but like the Swiftboaters of yore, it just keeps circling, like a freaking vulture…

Posted by: Marysdude at August 29, 2008 11:13 AM
Comment #259985

Marysdude,

See it how you like, I could care less. The ugly tactic of calling anyone who doesn’t agree with you a racist is the only tool the progressive party has left apparently.

I am done with being called a racist. And now I am more done with the Democratic party than I ever thought possible. In fact, because of this, I may just abandon my vote for Barr and give it to McCain to defeat it.

I know how Bill Clinton and Ferraro felt. I don’t blame them one bit for their anger. It’s the worst of the partisan slime, something that I was told just days ago in this forum was something only Republicans do.

Congrats.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 29, 2008 11:17 AM
Comment #259989

“I may just abandon my vote for Barr and give it to McCain to defeat it”

I have been pondering that myself Rhinehold, for the exact same reasons.

Posted by: kctim at August 29, 2008 11:30 AM
Comment #259990

Now the Race for President of the United States of America is truly Historic.The 18 million cracks in the ceiling will be shattered by a White Female Republican Vice President.Thank you Barack Obama,Thank you Hillary Clinton,Thank you Bill Clinton.Now all races has something to be proud of.Bye Bye Berry.

Posted by: John at August 29, 2008 11:32 AM
Comment #260002

Yes, Rhinehold, vote for anyone you want, especially out of pique. It is your right.

Posted by: womanmarine at August 29, 2008 12:26 PM
Comment #260005

What you hear and smell from the right wing is:FEAR. They know that in no way can they top what the dems did this week. What positive things can they possibly say about the last 8 years.

Rhinehold, you do not have to agree with John but he has a right to post as he sees it on this site just as you do. Resorting to cussing people out because you do not agree does not belittle John but belittles you.

John, I am not convinced it is racism but agree that it is sad. I think it is fear from the corporations that own the media. Fear that this year they may not be able to steal the elections like they did in 2000 and 2004, fear that their televised lies will no longer work and fear that they can no longer motivate people to vote against their own interests by insiting fear. It is a desperate attempt by the right wing corporations who own the media to stop the unstoppable.

John, Being white I know that I am not always able to recognize racism when I see it (although i try to be cognizant and aware) so I will strongly consider what you have said. I certainly do not want to be like the right wing and possibly like Rhinehold who want to pretend that racism doesn’t still exist and that white business men wouldn’t resort to racism to win an election.

Posted by: Carolina at August 29, 2008 12:46 PM
Comment #260009

just to clarify my responses are to John T not the other John that I see slinking around.

Posted by: Carolina at August 29, 2008 12:49 PM
Comment #260022

Carolina:

John, I am not convinced it is racism but agree that it is sad. I think it is fear from the corporations that own the media.

i understand your opinion.

i just don’t see the fairness. Ronald Reagan, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Fred Thomspon (who, btw, ran in this election and had just 2 years more ‘experience’ in the senate longer than Barack and yet he wasn’t vilified in the media about his lack of experience), they made their names in the entertainment industry before entering politics. One could claim that they even USED their name or brand to help get themselves elected. It’s not the same from Barack. Yet, when they use the word celebrity they use the word in a disparaging fashion only for Barack.

Barack’s history is remarkable. For in a nation that founded itself on the principals of the great melting pot, he is truly a product of the new American dream. He is and should be (as Hillary and now, Palin will be) looked upon as beacon of hope and promise.

Posted by: john trevisani at August 29, 2008 1:25 PM
Comment #260023

I thought that Obama answered the “celebrity” question pretty well last night. Not sure if I think it was a racist code word or just the lame GOP slapping labels on progressives because they can’t think of anything more imaginative to smear them with. I’m sure racism will rear its ugly head sooner or later in this campaign. Hell, W even did it to McCain in 2000 - I don’t see the right wing smear machine not sinking to depths that they have gone to over and over again (Willie Horton in ‘88, McCain-SC in 2000, Harold Ford in 2006).

As to those of you who will change your vote from Barr to McCain because of this thread. That is silly. Then again, Bob Barr is about as libertarian as George Bush. They must’ve really been hurting for a candidate this year.

Posted by: tcsned at August 29, 2008 1:29 PM
Comment #260033

Tom
Does the left like being called traitors because they do not agree with President Bush? Hell no, you guys have complained about that from day one and many decided that “anybody but Bush” was the way to vote.
Well guess what, we do not like being called racists simply because we are not inspired by Obama or believe in his policy, so maybe we should take the lefts cue and vote based on an “anybody but Obama” belief.

As far as celebrity, it is your own fault for giving the Republicans that ammo to use against your guy. The leftys couldn’t just show up at a rally and show support, no, they have to show up and act like 1960’s Beatles fans. The media couldn’t just cover his campaign, no, they had to make it Obama 24/7. The media couldn’t ask specifics, no, they had to push one word, “change,” over and over and over, again and again. Jackasses like keith oberman couldn’t offer fair coverage, no, they had to put Obama up on a pedestal and spread the message of fear that anybody who doesn’t think so, is unintelligent or a redneck racist or both.

The left made Obama a celebrity and seeing them blame racisism for their own mistake is sickening.

Posted by: kctim at August 29, 2008 1:59 PM
Comment #260034

tcsned,

I would not think it racist automattically either…but, when the reference was punctuated with the pictures of two blond white celebrities…welll…it did bring racism to mind.

About Palin: I heard one of the talking heads on Faux Views gushing about how well McPain and Palin would work together…yeah…Dick Cheney in drag, and the guy that titters when a backer refers to Hillary as a bitch and speaks of his own wife as a cunt…you bet they’ll work well together.

Posted by: Marysdude at August 29, 2008 2:00 PM
Comment #260037

F*** YOU.See it how you like, I could care less.

Rhinehold, how easy it would have been for you to act like an adult in this situation and just make your point.

I don’t agree that “celebrity” is code for “racism”. On the other hand, 5% of those over 60 have said that “America is not ready to be led by a black man.” Racism is a factor, of course, in the first presidential campaign of a black man.

Posted by: Max at August 29, 2008 2:05 PM
Comment #260043
Rhinehold, how easy it would have been for you to act like an adult in this situation and just make your point.

You are correct, I should not let my personally insulted feelings to get the better of me.

Unfortunately, they do. I suppose I am just human…

As for 5% over 60, to me that is a success, not a failure. What is the number under 60? What is the trend that this country is going in? Where have we come, as a society, in the past 80, 60, 40 years?

Instead of celebrating, we focus on the few remaining self-loathing racists and use them as reasons to smear political opponents as John and Ray did this morning. And how a lot of liberal talk show hosts do every day. I love being told that because I don’t support Obama that I must be a racist, it is heartwarming in this day and age for those who are successful AND black (more successful than I) to then tell me how much of a racist I am. Especially when I don’t believe race actually exists.

So yeah, we can focus on me losing it. That could be the story. In fact, if that was the only thing said in this comment section, that I was over the top and hypocritical, then fine. But then we read others supporting the insinuation that racism is leading the news, code words are hidden everywhere, racism is rampant, etc… Well, it’s probably best I stay away from the left for a while, my humanness might spill out again.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 29, 2008 2:19 PM
Comment #260048

Rhinehold,

You are not a racist if/when you disagree with ‘O’ or his party. But many of the tactics used by the right either are or border on racism. Denying that doesn’t make it go away.

My old man was fond of telling me (when he didn’t care for the company I was keeping), that I shouldn’t be surprised by the fleas if I insisted on laying with dogs.

Any democrat who disagreed with this travisty in Iraq, or Viet Nam have been asked to ‘love it or leave it’, called traiter, accused of treason. But we were NOT laying with unamerican dogs.

You who do not ask your party (the other party) to stop with the stupidity of inserting racism into campaign ads, etc., ARE laying with racist dogs.

Posted by: Marysdude at August 29, 2008 2:24 PM
Comment #260055

Rhinehold:

smear political opponents as John and Ray did this morning. …I love being told that because I don’t support Obama that I must be a racist

This is first and only time i’m going to directly address Rhinehold on this subject: (i chose to leave the profanity as part of the thread as it represented some real honest anger, even if it does violate the board’s comment policy)

Please read my original post. In nowhere, even in your vivid imagination, do i call you a racist.
While you’re reading the original post, please notice that i did not ‘smear political opponents’.

If you merely scroll-up a little, you’ll see that i referred to the media. So unless i was watching you report on CNN or FNC last night, i doubt it very much that i called you anything.

Cheers!

Posted by: john trevisani at August 29, 2008 2:49 PM
Comment #260063

John,

I understand that you weren’t addressing me as Ray did in his post (though not directly, it was still inclusive of me) and I apologize for going off the reservation, as it were. I also thank you for leaving it there, I am not about to hide from anything I’ve written. I am a human being with emotions and feelings, just like everyone else, and I find that many on the left often forget that when they start throwing out things like ‘racist’ and ‘evil’ with little concern about the humans they are addressing.

However, I do, and will alwaysw, react objectionally when I see people trying to invent or insert the idea of ‘code words’ into normal language as an attempt to scare someone into being quiet by intimating that they are racist. Are they? Perhaps, but saying that Obama has rock star status is not a behind the scenes attempt to call him ‘black’, no matter how you attempt to spin it that way. No matter if you state it as fact.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 29, 2008 3:07 PM
Comment #260064

John

People seem to be able to find racism almost anywhere these days. It all comes down to how one defines it. You could probably talk to half a dozen individuals and ask them what racism means to them and you would come up with a dozen different views.

Myself, I don’t see the racism aspect in the celebrity claim. I think it is nothing more than an attempt to paint him in relation to his largess to that of just an entertainer with no real significant governmental abilities. You must remember that in conservative circles any celebrity other than a conservative celebrity is seen largely as an insignificant person with too much money and no real right to voice an opinion. Do you remember Jack’s views on celebrities? The claim appeals only to right wing extremists with rather shallow views on most everything. Anyone with the ability to think for themselves will see right through it.

Posted by: RickIL at August 29, 2008 3:07 PM
Comment #260066

kctim - I don’t think that anyone who is against Obama is a racist. He is, after all, a Democrat, I don’t expect any Republican or conservative to support him. Voting against your interests isn’t racist - it’s stupid. That is not to say that there aren’t plenty of racists out there who have a platform and enough supporters to get ads on TV. I’m sure we’ll hear from them soon enough. It’s naive to think that those people don’t exist. America has come a long way but we ain’t there yet.

For our part, those of us who support Obama can’t fall into that false choice thing that if you don’t support Obama you are racist (we heard enough of this from W - if you don’t support my policies you side with the terrorists - bs). But when the racist ads start flying we need to be there to call them out and denounce them.

Race has always been a difficult issue for the US - many of our founders owned slaves and created institutional racism to explain why they should be allowed to own humans in a country that professes to be about individual liberty. We fought a terribly destructive civil war to resolve the issue of human property. Then we lived through 100 years of Jim Crow where the amount of pigmentation in your skin still was a measure of how much freedom you could enjoy. Hell, Loving v. Virginia was decided when I was 1 year old. In my life time we have gone from whites only signs to a black man nominated to be president. It just hasn’t been that long since the days of dogs and fire hoses. So there is good reason to believe that racist forces are going to come into play in this campaign.

Posted by: tcsned at August 29, 2008 3:09 PM
Comment #260078

RickL:
Perfectly understood.

The African-American community has been complaining for years (and IMO rightly so) that images portrayed in the media and entertainment are negative toward their community and unequal to that of other ethnicities.

Obama’s current image is a role model for all children of races. He embodies the true spirit of the new American dream. It’s a role model to protect, not knock down.

In placing Obama in celebrity status, (ref: Hilton and Spears)they are attempting to reduce and objectify Obama to some transient entertainment value. That entertainment value has been challenged by the African-American for years as a way to keep the community down, keep the community contained and keep the community away from positions of power.

Posted by: john trevisani at August 29, 2008 3:27 PM
Comment #260079

Words have power. I think we all know that here.

If the word “uppity” was used no one would doubt the racism.

The use of celebrity as a demeaning characteristic has been used in this campaign. I think commentators note the enthusiasm in the crowds responding to Barrack.

I suspect coming from a politico it might have one meaning, but since it is used by the media, it is convenient, perhaps by plan, that it has another connotation.

I can see both sides of the argument here, but denying that racism exists in America is absurd, perhaps wishful thinking.

I just hope no “Red Men” were offended when we went “off the reservation”.

Posted by: googlumpugus at August 29, 2008 3:30 PM
Comment #260098

Tom
Nobody has said racists do not exist, but they are not hiding behind every door either. Ignoring racism is wrong, but looking for it everywhere or creating it in everything, is worse.

Race is such a difficult issue because so many cling to it in order to hold back others or advance themselves.

Not voting for Obama is voting against ones interests and is stupid? That “we know whats best for you” kind of thinking is exactly why Obama has not already run away with this election.
I am not dependent on govt, so voting for Obama would be voting against my interests. I am neither racist or stupid.

Posted by: kctim at August 29, 2008 3:48 PM
Comment #260101

john -

You mention a bunch of other names in your article, but the one I think is most instructive is Dr. King’s. King was famous, and still is. But he was never accused of being a celebrity. Why? Because he stood for something much more meaningful than his own personal advancement. He suffered to get where he was (and paid the ultimate price for getting there).

There’s no racism is judging people by the content of their character. I, for one, would be more inclined to vote for Mayor Cory Booker of Newark for president (maybe in 2016) than for Obama. Both are brilliant black politicians, but Booker is the one who has taken a tough road and held himself accountable to goals and to his constituents. I don’t see the accomplishments, the public service, or the bigger-than-himselfness in Obama that I see in the politicians of any color whom I really admire.

Maybe he can prove me wrong and be a great president, doing the right thing even when it’s unpopular or costly. But for now he’s himself, and doesn’t stand for anything greater.

Posted by: Chops at August 29, 2008 3:54 PM
Comment #260110

Frankly, if I were a moveon.org liberal I would be highly disappointed by Obama’s speech last night. Did you get the “red meat” you expected? What I heard from the lips of Barry was mostly old failed Gore and Kerry party positions.

The tired old party litany of bigger government, more spending, we’re for the little guy bullshit didn’t work for them then and it won’t do much for Barry.

The moveon.org liberal folks have every right to be pissed off. They paid a dear price to get to last night and their payoff was not forthcoming. Did Barry hit hard on the issues I hear mostly discussed on this blog by liberals, I don’t think so. Y’all wanted some red meat rhetoric and instead got some left-over, dried out, tripe.

Posted by: Jim M at August 29, 2008 4:03 PM
Comment #260117

kctim - I think you misunderstood what I am saying. I was agreeing with you that there is nothing wrong with not voting for Obama if voting FOR him would go against your interests. That would be stupid. I am not asserting that anyone who would vote against Obama was voting against their interests. I could give a long list of reasons why I am supporting him and why it is in my interests to do so - but that’s another story. I certainly don’t think you are racist or stupid and was not saying that.

Posted by: tcsned at August 29, 2008 4:16 PM
Comment #260127

John and Carolina, I think you’re both right. To me, it seems like Racism combined with the Fear that is simply oozing from the corporations.

Rhinehold:

And now I am more done with the Democratic party than I ever thought possible. In fact, because of this, I may just abandon my vote for Barr and give it to McCain to defeat it.

kctim:

I have been pondering that myself Rhinehold, for the exact same reasons.

Heh. Yeah. Brand New Developments — so there!!!

Rhinehold:

So yeah, we can focus on me losing it. That could be the story. In fact, if that was the only thing said in this comment section, that I was over the top and hypocritical, then fine. But then we read others supporting the insinuation that racism is leading the news, code words are hidden everywhere, racism is rampant, etc… Well, it’s probably best I stay away from the left for a while, my humanness might spill out again.

I personally never have an issue with Humanness, it’s Perpetual Narcissism that really pulls my chain.

Posted by: Veritas Vincit at August 29, 2008 4:34 PM
Comment #260143

Is John McCain and Sarah Palin romantically involved?
Is that true???

http://art-of-politics.blogspot.com

Posted by: John at August 29, 2008 4:58 PM
Comment #260149

Um, no?

Is that what you have to add in an attempt to drive traffic to your site, John? Posted on more than one comment section?

Posted by: rhinehold at August 29, 2008 5:02 PM
Comment #260152

Because I want the answer

PS
That is not my blog

Posted by: John at August 29, 2008 5:08 PM
Comment #260158

John:

“Tossing out words like ‘celebrity’, to the untrained ear, is all about rock star status or film credibility; but it’s not. Ronald Reagan certainly was a celebrity before went into politics, but media outlets weren’t claiming his celebrity status when he was running. But when the media uses celebrity to describe Obama, they do so in a disparaging manner.” I have a couple of things on this part of your article. First of all, as I remember it President Reagan had ran for and been elected as Governor of California and when he ran on the national ticket; he had a record as a Chief Executive to run on. Also as I remember it, he was dubbed “just a B rate actor” and that issue came up often(Jerry Brown paid to have “Bedtime for Bonzo” episodes aired, if my memory serves). Was this racist?

“Diminishing Obama’s message by reducing his speech to just another concert event or tying Obama with the likes of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton is code. For in Barack Obama’s case, when the media mentions ‘celebrity’ it is merely code for subtle racism.” To this I must ask you to show some proof. Calling someone a racist, or to accuse someone of racism, is a major accusotory statement. I sir challenge you to back your opinion with fact. If you cannot, IMHO you are practicing the same smear and character assination you are accusing the conservatives of.

“What they are actually saying is that black Americans, no matter how credentialed, no matter how intelligent, no matter how educated and socially dedicated, that black Americans, as Barack is one, will be nothing more than just an entertainer. No more than Michael Jordon. No more than Bill Cosby. And no more than O. J. Simpson.” Senator Obama has been elected to both State and Federal Legislatures, which is an achievement. My question is what did he do with these offices? What bills, initatives has he pushed through? What bills have he authored?

“What a shame that the political process has evolved to this level of racism. The evolution from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s ‘I have a dream’ speech in 1963 to Barack Obama’s inspirational Presidential acceptance speech in 2008 should be heralded for its historical context.” Now we are at the point that if anyone criticizes his speech for any reason, that person is a racist? How convienent, how intellectually honest.

IMHO, this is what many on the left have resorted to tactically and it is all covered in the world of political correctness, the conservatives are racist and sexist. I ask you this, if 93% of white America were to vote for Senator Mccain, would that be racist?

Posted by: submarinesforever at August 29, 2008 5:14 PM
Comment #260162

Jim M

Your post is exactly what I would expect to hear from you. I do not mean that in a demeaning way. It is just that you heard only what you wanted to hear last night.

I heard the red meat, I heard compassion, understanding and an honest assessment of realities. I saw desire, passion, empathy and the pains and futilities of a person who genuinely wants to do what is right for the people of this nation. I saw a man who is capable of uniting people to pursue a cause. A man with an actual plan to help us successfully move beyond eight years of irresponsible government. I did not see a celebrity. I saw a human being who many many people are willing to put their faith in not because he is a messiah or celebrity, but because to them he simply presents our best chance at something better. Rhinehold would say that I bought into the hype. That simply is not true. I have held Obama’s same views for a long time.

I suspect, and yes I realize I may be wrong here, that you are a person who does not need something better. You are probably very comfortable and feel at odds with Obama’s taxing plan. I can understand that if it is the case. That does not mean I have sympathy for your situation. I do believe it is time for a re balancing of the tax structure. Since the advent of the Bush administration the wealthy have made huge gains in furthering their portfolios while the rest of us have faced stagnation and in many cases loss. This is the result of poor economic policy which includes our current tax structure under Bush. It has evolved into a no win situation for the little guy and a no lose situation for those at the top. If I have mis characterized your situation I apologize.

Posted by: RickIL at August 29, 2008 5:19 PM
Comment #260171

Rhinehold

I am done with being called a racist. And now I am more done with the Democratic party than I ever thought possible. In fact, because of this, I may just abandon my vote for Barr and give it to McCain to defeat it.

I for one have never thought of you as a racist. I have thought that you were perhaps a little over the top and maybe a bit overly persistent in implying racism, but never a racist per say.

Are you saying that you would compromise your principles just to spite a few liberals? I can’t say that I agree with all your principles or approach to issues, but I can say that I have always felt you are one of the most principled people who frequent this site. Convicted in your principles to the point that it actually becomes very annoying. At any rate this liberal is wishing you a good weekend. Hope it is happier for you than today has been.

Posted by: RickIL at August 29, 2008 5:38 PM
Comment #260194

“This is the result of poor economic policy which includes our current tax structure under Bush. It has evolved into a no win situation for the little guy and a no lose situation for those at the top. If I have mis characterized your situation I apologize.”
Posted by: RickIL at August 29, 2008 05:19 PM

Thanks RickIL for your heartfelt summary of your hopes for the Obama/Biden ticket. Perhaps I have heard too many campaign speeches by liberal Democrats telling the folks that only government can lift them from their economic plight.

RickIL, we have been hearing about the need for big government since the New Deal. Whatever problems we as a nation faced the liberal answer has always been more government and less individual freedom. Perhaps all the attempts to solve problems were well-intentioned, but the continuing string of failure to achieve stated goals has proven that huge government agencies spending vast sums of money can not replace or duplicate individual responsibility, hard work, diligence and initiative.

The war on poverty hasn’t won anything of substance. Establishment of social security, Medicare and Medicaid has failed to provide a secure retirement or better, less costly health care. Federal government involvement in education, housing, and crime has had a limited impact and much of that impact made the problems worse.

Government is very good at collecting tax dollars, impeding progress with unnecessary regulations, attempting to direct social engineering, and interfering in our every day lives. The federal government has gone way beyond the powers enumerated in our cherished founding documents having usurped many of the rights of the individual states.

I argue on the side of a small federal government operating within its constitutional boundaries knowing that it is at the local and state level where citizens can best express their desires for their needs.

Liberals attempt to control our lives and conservatives attempt to free our lives from an oppressive federal hand. Every time a citizen, local government, or state government is asked to give up power to the national government we loose part of our freedom. Little by little we give up more freedom in exchange for some perception of “fairness” or security and get neither.

Barry and Joe speak of solving problems and fairness thru the vast, unyielding, costly, oppressive, and ineffective machinery of Washington. As always, the liberal idea of “if a little is good, a lot must be better” is put forward as a solution. And as usual, the more Washington tinkers in our lives the worse the illness becomes.

I know what a Obama/Biden administration wants. It wants more control over my life, more taxes from my wallet, and less power by me to control how I live, think, and act.

My sense of McCain is that he is more willing to leave me alone. He is more willing to let states and local governments seek solutions for its citizens needing help. And John McCain and I understand that while all men are created equal, no power on earth can guarantee equality of results for each of us. We understand that as individuals we do have the freedom to succeed or fail. We understand that some of our citizens will need help and we gladly give it…but are not convinced that our help needs to be filtered thru Washington nor our freedom be exchanged for promises.

Posted by: Jim M at August 29, 2008 6:41 PM
Comment #260215

I was watching Palin in the doctor’s office today. From a distance she looked like Tina Fey. I can’t wait to see the skit. I thought, for a moment, it was one. Decrepit McCain, Crazy Palin singing,
‘hot for teacher”.

Posted by: googlumpugus at August 29, 2008 7:34 PM
Comment #260218

Jim M,

Wasn’t that Bush’s song and dance? Look where THAT got us.

Posted by: googlumpugus at August 29, 2008 7:37 PM
Comment #260223

“Jim M, Wasn’t that Bush’s song and dance? Look where THAT got us.”
Posted by: googlumpugus at August 29, 2008 07:37 PM

Goog, exchanging a poorly executed conservative song and dance for a promised liberal shout and hustle gains us nothing. I am hoping this time around we’ll have a better singer and hoofer.

Posted by: Jim M at August 29, 2008 7:51 PM
Comment #260231

I’d be happy with some leadership instead of a show.

Posted by: googlumpugus at August 29, 2008 8:13 PM
Comment #260236

The Obama Decline: From Agent Of Change to Hesitant Politician.

http://newt.org/tabid/102/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/3663/Default.aspx

Posted by: Jim M at August 29, 2008 8:28 PM
Comment #260243

Jim M

Our government is what it is. Neither side of the aisle has been any better than the other at restraining government. It seems to me that conservative principles have been no more effective than liberal principles. As for conservatives trying to free our lives well, I feel more manipulated and owned under this administration than I ever have under any other. Government at this point in time under a conservative president is larger and more out of control than it has ever been.

No one can rightfully deny that our country is in a mess of unparalleled magnitude. Much of that mess the result of procrastination on moving responsibly into the future. I think that despite your perception of what government should be, we will never in actuality realize it. We could debate forever the effects of putting more responsibility on the states and in the hands of the people. But the fact is our population and its needs are now just too vast to think that the simple government philosophy can be effective in todays age. I do think downsizing of government from time to time can be effective at cleaning out the garbage which bogs it down.

Accountability in government would go a long way towards effecting responsible governance as would allowing voters to determine if a legislator is worthy of a pay raise or not. These are just a few of my thoughts here Jim. I am well aware that we are a long ways from instituting true government reform. Politicians know that so long as the voters are fighting amongst themselves they will have little time or effort to make demands on the way they do business. Once again it is a no win situation for the citizens of this country.

All this aside a person does need to make a choice as to who will best represent their interests. From time to time a flip flop is necessary to put things back in proper perspective and bring our politicians back to earth. That imo is where we are at now.

Posted by: RickIL at August 29, 2008 8:46 PM
Comment #260281

Checking in with reality, BHO was originally chosen by the Pritzkers, Newton Minnow, and others, because of the “celebrity” quality that is now being claimed as derogatory. It’s what got him the nomination with a paper thin resume. It didn’t really help him that much in Illinois politics, but people could see that it would help him in a national campaign, where he could give speeches, while others could claim accomplishments for him, which all boil down to, “he’s a man who likes talking”.

If you don’t like the comparisons to BS and PH, how about Robert Downey Jr., and Shia LeBoeuf, talented actors capable of giving a good performance, but not very capable away from the stage, or podium in this case.

The story no one wants to hear, and most likely will not get into the MSM, is that there are black people who do not like BHO at all. Some object to his mixed parentage, some have other objections similar to the far right, and others have objections that everyone wants to ignore. They are not being heard because they are black, and are politically incorrect. All black people must have the same view of BHO as Obamagirl, or cheer when he brushes his shoulder, or blows his nose.

Posted by: ohrealy at August 29, 2008 11:10 PM
Comment #260338

RickIL,

I am done with being called a racist. And now I am more done with the Democratic party than I ever thought possible. In fact, because of this, I may just abandon my vote for Barr and give it to McCain to defeat it.

I for one have never thought of you as a racist.

Thank you

Are you saying that you would compromise your principles just to spite a few liberals? I can’t say that I agree with all your principles or approach to issues, but I can say that I have always felt you are one of the most principled people who frequent this site. Convicted in your principles to the point that it actually becomes very annoying.

RickIL, again, thank you and there is a difference between saying that I may do something in a fit of anger and actually doing it.

No, I have no real desire or plan to vote for McCain. He as at odds with my views as much as Obama is so it would make no sense. But the way that many Obama’s supporters are acting just infuriates me, especially when they acted indignant for being treated almost as bad by Bush supporters four years ago. You would think they would have remembered how that felt…

At any rate this liberal is wishing you a good weekend. Hope it is happier for you than today has been.

Again, thank you. Unfortunately this weekend is being spent at a funeral home for the first part of it. A mid 20s cousin decided to get off the wagon and OD’d earlier this week, his father is already battling cancer and that famliy was already going through more than anyone should. The outpouring of emotion that accompanies this is pretty intense. That is perhaps why I was so close to the edge yesterday, but it is no excuse, I should have held it in check better.

In fact, I think I’ll be taking some time away from here for a few days at least, it is obvious that my emotions are running too strong and close to the edge.

Again, thanks for showing that not all liberals are playing by the same rules, it gives some of us a little bit of hope that no matter who gets elected we might be able to keep communicating civilly. I just wish the others that comment on your side would follow your lead and show the compassion and understanding that they profess to have.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 30, 2008 9:31 AM
Comment #260349

Rhinehold:

You and yours will be in my prayers.

And thanks for realizing that not all liberals are the same. Nor are all Obama supporters the same. Some of us sit back and really do try to take in all sides, which is why we read and respond in all the columns here at watchblog.

May you find peace and comfort, your comments will be missed while you are away.

Posted by: womanmarine at August 30, 2008 10:54 AM
Comment #260352

RickIL says, “As for conservatives trying to free our lives well, I feel more manipulated and owned under this administration than I ever have under any other. Government at this point in time under a conservative president is larger and more out of control than it has ever been.”

Two counterpoints RickIL, liberals tend to deal with “feelings” and conservatives with reality. How you feel does not make it true. How exactly have you been manipulated? And, I would not characterize President Bush as a conservative in his governing philosophy as he surely is in his social philosophy.

RickIL also states, “But the fact is our population and its needs are now just too vast to think that the simple government philosophy can be effective in todays age.”

I reject this self-fulfilling prophecy…more people requires more government. We have invented new needs (translated as “rights”), way beyond those found in our constitution, for government to address. Our government is vast and complex by our own intentional doing. By looking to government for all our solutions to problems it must necessarily grow. Having endless government entities to address every aspect of our lives has led to the complexity you speak of. As evidence I present our tax code. Can anyone justify the thousands of pages in the code as necessary, or is it merely an attempt to manipulate and obfuscate?

The levy and collection of taxes is simple…the use of the tax code to reward and punish is complex. Governance is simple, the use of government to achieve outcomes for political purpose is complex.

Posted by: Jim M at August 30, 2008 11:18 AM
Comment #260354

Rhinehold

My deepest sympathies. I think we all know how difficult it can be losing family and friends. Especially when they are so young. I lost a cousin who was 28 when he passed from a brain tumor. It was very difficult.

We are all human and as a result our responses sometimes tend to reflect what sort of day we are having. This is a rather small community here on watchblog, the result being that we get to know each other well enough that even over the net we can recognize when someone is having a bad time.

I to have to take some time off from here once in a while. After a while all the opinion and back and forth quips muddles my mind and prevents me from having clear unbiased thought. Looking forward to your return, no matter how aggressive and annoying it may sometimes be. :-)

Posted by: RickIL at August 30, 2008 11:25 AM
Comment #260363

Jim

Two counterpoints RickIL, liberals tend to deal with “feelings” and conservatives with reality.

Feelings are a large part of reality. They are an aspect of human nature that directly affects how we view and deal with reality. One can not make reasoned decisions based solely on reality without entering the equation of feeling. As an example I feel that your simplification of the defining parameters between liberal and conservative is inadequate. Conservatives also support entering the equation of religion into politics. They feel that there faith in a deity is valid and as a result use that belief to justify their feelings about mixing theology and politics. The differences are not so much a distinction between feelings or realities as they are to approaches to the issues. After all, we all share the same issues. We just do not agree on the priorities of those issues and how to handle them.

I feel manipulated in that this administration has gone to great efforts by virtue of non recognition to exclude any and all liberal philosophy or policy from it’s agenda. Bush and his administration have attacked our civil liberties and are much too secretive and narrow minded to have been good for this country. The results of the last eight years are all the validation needed on that point.

I agree on the tax issue 100%. The whole system imo is a ridiculous absurdity that needs to be revamped in a more simplistic manner that will insure that every person, business and corporation pay their fair share.

As for the rest, well I guess we will have to agree to disagree. No matter what sort or size of government we have the same humanitarian, national, and international concerns will still exist. I think a large part of the problem has been that working class people put little faith in their employers, neighbors, cities, townships, etc to insure that they are being treated properly and not taken advantage of by would be not so honorable entrepreneurs. Since we don’t have the organizational abilities or money to look out for those who take advantage of and use us we rely on a less than respectable institution to give us some oversight protections. It is a very complex situation and a catch 22 at at the same time. It has grown into a huge franchise of us against them, numbers versus wealth. Unfortunately neither side wants to lay down and die. Or even find compromise for that matter. Each feels they are validated in their stances. The only factor leveling the playing field is that there are many more of us than them. The result is that they must rely on government to reach deeper into our pockets. We must rely on government to keep them out of our pockets.

For what it is worth Republicans look out for them and pander to us. Democrats look out for us and try to reason with them.

Posted by: RickIL at August 30, 2008 12:21 PM
Comment #260378

RickIL, sorry to read that for you it has come down to them and us. Your statement, “I think a large part of the problem has been that working class people put little faith in their employers, neighbors, cities, townships, etc to insure that they are being treated properly and not taken advantage of…” is really sad to read. To imagine such despair as causing folks to trust politicians more than those you mention is a very sad commentary.

Is it because we have been told to demand more “rights” than those outlined in our founding documents that makes for discontent or is it that government has overstepped the bounds of its duties in promising more than it should and can deliver?

I contend that it is the demanding of new “rights”, not found in our constitution, that is causing complexity, confusion and discontent. We have discovered we can legislate new rights and then demand that government fulfill them. If people want more “new rights” they obviously will look to a national government as the only remaining entity that has the ability to print more money to pay for them.

We have found “new rights” as an excuse for our national government to squander huge sums in ways never intended by our founders. And, these “new rights” are red meat for politicians of both parties. It’s what gives them power and influence. If we tell folks they have a right to a three-bedroom house in the suburbs then we have an obligation to provide that house. If we tell people that they have a right to succeed, a right not to fail, then we must ensure that outcome.

Government then no longer becomes the umpire insisting upon an equal playing field, but instead, becomes the guarantor of the outcome. And that, my friend, is just not possible under any form of government.

Posted by: Jim M at August 30, 2008 1:51 PM
Comment #260394

Rhinehold, I too will join the others with my condolences. I lost my daughter at 26, and there are no words that change that….only time.
We’ve butted heads on here, but I still have a soft and caring side to me….. find peace.

Posted by: janedoe at August 30, 2008 4:29 PM
Comment #260398

I am trying to figure out why my comments are posting-not here but under the most recent topic. Thought I would come here and see if my post goes through.

Posted by: carolina at August 30, 2008 5:07 PM
Comment #260399

I meant not posting

Posted by: carolina at August 30, 2008 5:08 PM
Comment #260452

Jim M

It is sad but it is what we have. And what we have is probably better than most. Not even close to perfect and it most assuredly requires checks and balances from your side and mine to keep it somewhat accountable.

If we tell people that they have a right to succeed, a right not to fail, then we must ensure that outcome.

Much like the recent bailouts for a few of our financial friends and a guarantee of success for Fannie and Freddie. I personally have a problem with government using my money to insure that wealthy institutions which have been mismanaged can not fail. It seems that now days there are no risks for the wealthy. The government freely uses taxpayer money to fund and bond these folks and lets them start over or walk free in spite of deceptive practices. Can you really blame the working class for feeling disenfranchised? I know it is a bit more complex than what I can put here in a paragraph. But the fact remains there is not an even playing field. It is a struggle to keep it close. We are so caught up in that struggle that there is no time or available means to correct the cause, which is as you say a government that is too large. And as I say too corrupt, greedy and self serving to face accountability. There is no party, president or legislator at this point in time that is going to take a serious approach to reform. Sad, but true.

Posted by: RickIL at August 30, 2008 10:26 PM
Comment #260571

RickIL, you’re right, the “red meat” and “new rights” I speak of are addressed not only to individuals but also to corporate America.

At one time Politics was described as the Art of Compromise.

Today, Politics can be described as an Act of Deception.

Voters were once free-thinking individualists.

Voters today are merely sheep occupying space in one of the many flocks of interest.

Posted by: Jim M at August 31, 2008 4:48 PM
Comment #260694

In my opinion he was diplomatic at that speech and some people find it funny too.
————————
jasmine

Blazeinfotech

Posted by: jasmine at September 1, 2008 6:07 AM
Comment #260700

Rhinehold,

Sorry to hear about your cousin. I wish you and his family the best.

Posted by: googlumpuugus at September 1, 2008 8:08 AM
Comment #261651

What About Obama & The Unseemly Mr. Rezko
Barack Obama still considers Tom Rezko a friend. Tom Rezko by the way is under investigation by Federal prosecutors, who accuse Rezko of trying to use his connections to Gov. Rod Blagojevich to demand kickbacks from companies wanting to do business with state government. This is the same Mr. Rezko that Mr. Obama purchased some land and a home from.
We need to demand that Mr. Obama promise that if he becomes President, he will not pardon his old buddy Tom!

Posted by: pom pom girl at September 5, 2008 7:50 AM
Comment #261988

The Barack Obama Prophecies

(August 17, 2008) Legend has it that Migel Nostrildamous, a seer of the 1500s, could smell the future. He predicted the 2008 U.S. Presidential race between Barack Obama and John McCain.

Nostrildamous claimed there were two parallel universes, one in which McCain would win and one in which Obama would win. Although he could not clearly see which universe was ours, he gave an amazingly detailed account of the outcome of the Obama presidency.

What Nostrildamous saw was startling. In 2015, after winning a second term, Obama will find himself in a large room being grilled by angry senators ready to impeach him.

This was Nostrildamous’ vision:

Senator: President Obama, you were supposed to be the President of change. What happened?

Barack Obama: Well, I believe I did give you change …

Senator (interrupts angrily): … Mr. President, we’re missing New York! It got nuked right out of our midst. That’s not the kind of change we were looking for!

Obama: Senator, I’ve been saying for years, Canadians have been slipping through our northern borders …

Senator: … Canadians had nothing to do with this! Iran was the culprit!

Obama: Is there a basis for this allegation?

Senator: The plane was highjacked by Iranian nationals, the nuclear weapon was carried on board by Iranian diplomats, the bomb’s components were manufactured in Iran, Ahmadinejad took responsibility for the attack, and, a day before the attack, the highjackers were invited to Columbia University for a robust debate on the ethics of dropping a nuclear bomb on a populated city if it has an impact on the environment and the caribou reindeer in Alaska.

Obama: You know … that’s an interesting point. You see, Ahmadinejad assured me his nuclear program was strictly for peaceful purposes.

Senator: And you believed him?

Obama: I had no reason not to. In our last meeting he articulated how much he loved the caribou reindeer.

Senator: Mr. President, we can’t afford more catastrophes.

Obama: We could’ve avoided this one.

Senator: And how’s that?

Obama: Well, when I asked Americans to inflate their tires …

Senator (bangs down angrily with his gavel): … What on earth does this have to do with inflating tires?!

Obama: If you’ll let me finish, senator … (pauses for a moment) I thought you were a Democrat.

Senator: There are no more Democrats and Republicans. There’s only one party now — the Damnangrycats (pronounced damn-angry-cats). What’s your point, Mr. President?

Obama: Well, as I was saying, when I asked Americans to inflate their tires, they laughed at me. Ahmadinejad wasn’t laughing. He had his people inflate their tires. With the windfall profits from saved money on gas, they were able to speed up their nuclear program by leaps and bounds. Had we inflated our tires first, we wouldn’t be in this situation today.

Senator: With all due respect, Mr. President, this is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. How would inflating our tires first have saved us from this situation?

Obama: Well, while we were busy laughing, they were busy building. While we were busy stagnating, they were busy progressing. While we were looking back, they were looking forward. While we were accepting a bleak future, they were beaming with optimism. While we were …

Senator: Okay okay, I get it.

Obama: It seems absurd to judge a presidency on only one act.

Senator: We’re not. We’re judging your presidency on several acts. Have you forgotten about your wide open border policy on the south?

Obama: Of course not. My strongest voter base is from Tijuana.

Senator: Don’t you find that a little disturbing?

Obama: Disturbing? I’ll tell you what’s disturbing. When Americans drive around on flat tires …

Senator: … stop with the tires already …

Obama: … you’re not letting me explain my position.

Senator: I’ll wait till you flip-flop on that position another fourteen times, and then I’ll listen to the final explanation.

Obama: When you attack my people …

Senator: … they’re not your people. They’re Mexicans.

Obama: I’m President to all people. All people have the right to dreams. All people have the right to equal comfort zones. All people …

Senator: … they overwhelmed Texas and California, seceded from the union, and renamed the two states The United States of Juanitos. Is it me or is there something wrong with that picture?

Obama: I’ll say there’s something wrong with that picure. The “Runners Republic” would’ve been a more appropriate name.

Senator: Mr. President, under your watch we’ve lost three states.

Obama: Three? (laughs) Senator, aren’t you making a mountain out of a molehill?

Senator: Am I?

Obama: What’s the big deal? We still have fifty four states.

Senator: We only had fifty to begin with.

Obama: When did we lose the other seven?

Senator: We never had fifty seven, Mr. President. Can you name all fifty seven?

Obama: You know … that’s an interesting point. This country was founded on unity, not numbers. Washington never counted states. Lincoln never counted states. I may not look like all those presidents on the dollar bills, but I’m not going to count states either.

Senator: Washington and Lincoln also never flipped-flopped an issues the way you do. Your energy policies have been disastrous.

Obama: I lifted all drilling restrictions.

Senator: After how many flip-flops?

Obama: Why didn’t the oil companies drill between flip-flops?

Senator: Because your flips were shorter than your flops.

Obama: The coast of Florida has been open for drilling for a long time now.

Senator: By the time our oil companies were allowed to drill, the oil was gone. China pumped it all. They’re selling gas all over China in ninety-nine cents stores. Chinese farmers are driving around in stretch limos.

Obama: I’m not denouncing China, and I’m not interested in people who want me to denounce China. It’s not a China worthy of denouncing.

Obama: Thank you for that insight, Mr. President, but this isn’t about China. It’s about your waffling on all positions. You even flip-flopped on drilling in the “Arctic National Wildlife Refuge” in Alaska?

Obama: We had to stop. After drilling began, a caribou reindeer slipped on an oil slick and fractured an antler. The animal-rights people threatened to bring me before a tribunal for crimes against humanity.

Senator: But they’re not human.

Obama: I know, but they’ve got a lot of clout in Washington.

Senator: I was talking about the reindeer.

Obama: Ah … look, caribou have the same feelings we do.

Senator: And how would anyone know that?

Obama: The reindeer with the fractured antler recently developed social anxiety disorders. He no longer sucks ice with the rest of his family.

Senator: Your record of not standing up to environmentalists is absolutely unforgivable.

Obama: Gentlemen, you’re forgetting, Congress now has three chambers: The Senate, The House or Representatives, and the Environmentalists. And the Environmentalists can overrule the other two chambers and the President.


As Nostrildamous’ vision began to fade, he saw the environmentalists eventually lifting drilling restrictions on the east coast, but only if all equipment are driven by solar energy and all fish within a 20 mile radius of drilling sites are moved deeper into the ocean.

Consequently, oil companies will drill during the day and catch fish at night. On heavy overcast days, instead of using heavy drilling equipment, oil companies will send down skin divers with fork hoes.

By 2030 oil companies will realize that selling fish is more profitable than drilling for oil and halt all oil exploration.

By 2035 all cars will be replaced by horses, buses will be replaced by stagecoaches, and hay will become the hottest commodity on the stock market.

As companies compete to improve the quality of hay, it’ll open up a new multibillion dollar “Hay Tech” industry. Most of these companies will be concentrated in an area in California called Fertilizer Alley.

One company will develop a breakthrough process that will improve many different types of plants. The process, called Multi-Fertilizing, will make a trillionaire out of it’s CEO, Gill Bates, and make his company, ExtraSoft, the most profitable in Hay Tech history.

Nostrildamous tried looking into the future of the McCain presidency, but his “communications” broke down. So he called tech support. His remains are still on hold.

by Josh Greenberger

Posted by: Josh Greenberger at September 6, 2008 11:24 PM
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