quiet angel forget their lies

2/25/08

Oh, come on. Just when the taste of fetid political horseshit begins to leave your mouth, along comes a picture of Obama wearing the traditional robes of a Somali elder leaked by the [fill in whomever] campaign to re-stoke the fears that Barack is somehow going to make our daughters wear burqas and recite the Koran. Excuse me, is it fucking 1954 again? Because if it is, I’ll get my wife to give me a foot massage in the Barcalounger so I can daydream of lunchtime at the office when I pork my secretary.

Obama shouldn’t have to defend himself against such things, because it brings ugly, thoroughly false suggestions into the realm of possibility, but we all saw what happened with the Swift Boating of 2004. Thus each of these pathetic smears, no matter how small, should be squashed with overwhelming force. So here it is, slowly: it would take a 3rd-grader’s education to remember that many foreign dignitaries adopt the singular dress of the countries they visit – it’s a sign of “respect”, you know, like not wearing a “POPE CAN SUCK MY BALLS” T-shirt when you visit the Vatican.

If you don’t understand the picture of Obama, and it makes you think he might sympathize with terrorists, you need to find the nearest crowbar and hit yourself in the face. As hard as you can. Seriously, I’ll wait.

Here’s the simple truth: it is not George Bush’s fault he won in 2004. It is not Ralph Nader’s fault. It is not Swift Boat assholes’ fault that Kerry lost in 2004. IT IS THE FAULT OF THE VOTERS WHO WERE SIMPLY FAR TOO STUPID TO VOTE INTELLIGENTLY. Did you ever vote for Ralph Nader? I’m sorry, that was really goddamn stupid. Oh no, I get why you did it, no need to explain, I’ve heard it all before. But it was still moronic. And it wasn’t just moronic in retrospect, it was moronic at the time.

Were you swayed by the Swift Boat ads? Did you get cold feet after Bin Laden delivered his message before the 2004 election? Did you fall for all the terrorist alerts every time something good happened for the Democrats? Well, you deserved what you got, don’t you think?

As for the picture of Obama, if the Clinton campaign was behind it, they’re disgusting – and if they weren’t, they should have come out today with a strong condemnation against it, instead of guilelessly shrugging and seeing where it takes them. You can’t control the behavior of ignorant voters, who would probably vote for Huckabee, shave their heads and buy purple Nikes if a comet told them to. But you can control your own behavior, and you can certainly conduct yourself with a remnant of integrity.

0 thoughts on “quiet angel forget their lies

  1. Matt

    Calling attention to the photo for the purpose of playing upon people’s worst instincts, as it was surely designed to do, is indeed disgusting. Of course the Clintons did it. Bill certainly wasn’t above racializing the contest after the South Carolina primary, so why is this surprising?
    But saying voters are “too stupid to vote intelligently” simply because your guy didn’t win is both arrogant and childish. Furthermore, your protest of “Swift Boating” rings a bit hollow after your post praising the NYT’s anonymously sourced smear article alleging rumors of infidelity against McCain. And at least the swift boat veterans put their own names by their first-hand accounts (most of which proved true, by the way) and not under a false cloak of objectivity. Kerry could’ve defeated the allegations by releasing his navy records to the public, something he still hasn’t done despite promising to do so early in his campaign. There’s a reason for that.

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  2. GFWD

    All Obama’s supporters need to do is circulate other photos of the Clintons or Bush family doing the diplomatic thing when visiting other countries.
    It’s no different then when the President is presented with the #1 jersey from the championship team visiting the White House that day. This photo certainly didn’t lead the country to think that Bush was selling out to the Japanese:
    http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/11/images/20051119-5_p111905pm-0110-515h.html
    As for the Swift Boat stuff during the last campaign, I still think that was one the best spin doctoring of our generation. They effectively made the guy who actually went to the war look worse than the draft dodger. I can’t think of a better spin job in recent history. Genius.
    I’m not a fan of that, mind you, but Rove and his crew kicked ass on that one. If the campaigns for the remaining serious contenders for both the Dems and Republicans don’t have a spin doctor bully like Rove’s crew on the payroll, they’re idiots and they deserve to lose.
    I don’t know what Kerry’s records say, but even if they say, “and then Captain Kerry cowered in the bottom of the boat like a little baby crying for his mother”, I’d still find that more respectable than someone who stayed home.
    Out spin me once, shame on you. Out spin me twice or thrice, shame on me.
    Matt, do you have the pictures of bill and Hillary or Bush featuring them posed in similar ceremonial garbs with foreign heads of state? This is not a jab at you. I know that you are not the curator of everything political; but when presented with a challenge, you usually find great links and comprehensive research to support your plans.
    And I’ve got to get ready for a deposition . . .

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  3. GFWD

    Aside from Caveman’s reference to Willie Horton above(at least that’s what I presume you meant, since the whole tank photo was his own camp’s idea), what are some other notable tide-turning “stunts” or spin doctoring things from campaigns past? I didn’t really follow politics that closely before college.

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  4. Matt

    GFWD,
    Not to turn this thread into a different topic altogether but… I know people like to think Rove is an evil genius or something, responsible for all the bad that happens to Democrats, but the truth of the matter is he had nothing to do with the swift boat veterans. They had been around since 1975 calling out John Kerry for his slander against veterans and exaggerated tales of heroism. They were successful in the last election largely because they were telling the truth (Christmas in Cambodia, gun running special ops, etc.).
    I don’t have any pictures of funnily dressed presidents. I actually have work to do today, too, believe it or not. But I’m sure those pictures out there somewhere and we’ll be seeing them shortly.

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  5. Matt

    OK, this is a funny parody. Incredibly dishonest in the way it uses selective McCain excerpts, but funny.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3gwqEneBKUs
    I really like the part at the end: “Good luck with THAT in November.” A lot of folks are going to be genuinely shocked this fall. At times I almost feel bad for them. Other times…not so much.
    In other news, this might be the first photo ever published of Obama looking sinister (in a very unhelpful article as well).
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/us_elections/article3433485.ece

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  6. Sean

    I never wanted to vote for John Kerry, and I ended up doing it purely as a lesser of two twits. The swift-boating isn’t the problem, and neither are the underhanded tactics being used against Obama. The world isn’t fair, and politics is the very thing we use when we’re describing other situations when they get dirty and unfair like this. Bring on the attacks now so we can see how he weathers them.
    And he weathers them amazingly. If John Kerry had simply said, “I appreciate the swift boat ads because I’m excited about debating my participation in the Vietnam war with President Bush’s. In fact, let’s do a point by point comparison with how we lived in our twenties…” then… well, then we’d have had a candidate who was nothing like John Kerry. We’d have Barack Obama.
    I would just like to say that assuming that a vote for Bush could only occur because of staggering stupidity is the kind of thing that Obama would never say. It’s pathetic, it’s cringingly untrue, and it does nothing to further the very ends we are voting for when we support Obama’s candidacy.
    There are many good reasons to vote for Bush over Kerry, there are solid intellectual reasons and emotional reasons. So much so that more Americans voted for Bush than did for Kerry, and many of these people will vote for Obama in ’08. Unless too many Obama supporters come off as alienating, smug and superior.

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  7. Ian

    I try not to correct impressions in the comments section, because if everyone comes away thinking the same thing, then it means I didn’t do a good enough job in the blog itself, and I deserve to get criticized.
    However (you knew that was coming), I never said voting for Bush was stupid. I said that voting for Bush BECAUSE of the Swift Boat ads, or the well-times terrorist alerts, or similar reasons… is stupid. It’s about being convinced by campaign tricks when [the voter] ought to know better.

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  8. Matt

    I accept Ian’s explanation for what he was trying to say, but that’s certainly not the plain reading. Nor was the impression inconsistent with past blog entries. “American Coastopia,” anyone?

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  9. Lara

    Ahh, Coastopia. I still have my t-shirt, though I’m hoping I won’t need to wear it anymore after November. In Ian’s defense, I think he has said before that Coastopia and several other “ranting” blogs are done in the heat of the moment, without the benefit of reflection. And those are the ones I usually enjoy the most. Even if they may not reflect how I really feel in the long run, they sure help on days like November 3, 2004. Sometimes all you need is a good rant to make you feel that all is not lost.

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  10. grumphreys

    Since Edwards is gone, I’m in the Obama camp now. Let’s face it, something like this is only the beginning of a huge character asassination campaign that will be waged on Obama if he wins the nomination.
    Hillary has already taken her arrows, and that’s one of the reasons her negatives are so high. Negative campaigning has been working for a long time now, we’ll see if Obama is able to transcend it.
    Saw a PBS doc recently on Jesse Helms called “Senator No” – an interesting take on Helms, the modern conservative movement and the racial smear tactics they’ve used to win election after election.

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  11. Steph Mineart

    Clinton has issued a strong denial that it was anyone from her campaign.
    http://tpmelectioncentral.talkingpointsmemo.com/2008/02/hillary_spokesperson_wolfson_s.php
    Putting aside that, though, I have some problems with your train of thought even before they issued the denial.
    Did Obama not know what he was wearing? Did he not know a photo was being taken of him? If he knew both, how is this photo “leaked?” It’s only a leak if it was a secret. If it were a picture of him naked – that would be a leak. He wouldn’t have appeared in a photo in that outfit if he though there was a problem with it, so how is this an attack?
    On the other hand – this quote from Obama —
    “I understand that Senator Clinton, periodically when she’s feeling down, launches attacks as a way of trying to boost her appeal”
    Sealed the deal for me. I’m just not voting for a guy that uses sexist dog whistles to imply that Clinton (and by extension, the entire half of the human population that menstruates, including ME) is unreliable to sit in the oval office.

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  12. Lyle

    My original comment was denied (despite it being totally ‘clean’ and non-inflammatory) but I’ll try again — basically, the prob wasn’t that the photo was “leaked” but rather than it was distributed at a sensitive time when whoever sent it out knew that silly rumors have been going around about Obama’s religion, and that same someone wanted to capitalize on those rumors and on people’s fears. That’s a rotten thing to do, in my book.

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  13. GFWD

    Steph, I sincerely don’t want to step in it, but how is the quote you cited by Obama sexist? If he had said the same thing about McCain, it would read the same. Obama has a wife, doesn’t he? Don’t you think she would kick the crap out of him first if he tried to go sexist?
    If he said, “when she’s feeling down every 28 days, I might agree with your interpretation”, but I don’t get that.
    Maybe I’m naive.

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  14. Matt

    If Steph wants to sit this one out because of some percieved slight by Obama, far be it for me to talk her out of it. However, it does seem overly sensitive to take offense at the use of the word “periodically” and the phrase “feeling down.” One really has to look hard to pick up on this stuff. Very subtle, that sexist Obama.

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  15. Claverack Weekender

    You have to admit, though, that if Obama really was trying to be subliminally sexist with that quote then he is a f*cking genius.

    Reply

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