April 29, 2008

Obama’s Cross to Bear

Filed under: Toon — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — Volt @ 7:09 am

March 7, 2008

It’s Not Over ‘Till…

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March 2, 2008

Frank Rich: McCain Channels His Inner Hillary

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , , — Volt @ 3:07 am

Frank Rich, The New York Times, March 2, 2008

Before they were sidetracked into a new war against The New York Times, the Rush Limbaugh posse had it right about John McCain. He is a double agent. Some Democrats do admire and like him. So does Jon Stewart, and so do many liberal editorial boards and card-carrying hacks in the mainstream American press. So, in fact, do many at The Times, including myself. As long as I don’t look too hard at the fine print.

You’ve got to love a guy who said a few years ago that he regretted likening Mr. Limbaugh to “a circus clown” because of all the complaints from circus clowns insulted by the comparison. “I would like to extend my apologies to Bozo, Chuckles and Krusty,” Senator McCain told a rather startled Neil Cavuto of Fox News.

What’s more, Ann Coulter and Tom DeLay aren’t entirely wrong when they bluster that a vote for Mr. McCain amounts to a vote for Hillary Clinton (or, for that matter, Barack Obama). The Arizona senator’s otherwise conservative record is closer to the Democrats on immigration, campaign-finance reform, stem-cell research, global warming, oil drilling in Alaska, waterboarding, Gitmo and, until a recent flip-flop, the Bush tax cuts. In The New Republic, Jonathan Chait concluded that Mr. McCain’s Senate votes made him “the most effective advocate of the Democratic agenda in Washington” during the first Bush term.

All of which should make Democrats more nervous than the clowns of the hard right. Might Mr. McCain so blur distinctions that he could grab enough independents to triumph? He won even among antiwar and anti-Bush voters in New Hampshire. A Mason-Dixon poll last week found Mr. McCain beating either Senator Obama or Senator Clinton in must-win Florida.

The good news for the Democrats so far is that whatever Mr. McCain’s sporadic overlap with liberals, he is emulating almost identically the suicidal Clinton campaign against Mr. Obama. He has mimicked Mrs. Clinton’s message and rhetorical style, her tone-deaf contempt for Mr. Obama’s cultural appeal, and her complete misreading of just how politically radioactive the war in Iraq remains despite its migration from the front page.

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February 29, 2008

Ted Rall: Ralph Nader… Hope You Can’t Vote For

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Ted Rall,, February 28, 2008

“What,” editorializes U.S. News & World Report, “does Ralph Nader bring to the political dialogue this year? Answer: nothing except for his own inflated ego.” Dimestore psychoanalysis was the standard reaction to Nader’s third third-party presidential bid. “An ego-driven spoiler,” the Des Moines Register called him. “He seems to have a pretty high opinion of his own work,” jabbed Barack Obama.

You see, other politicians who seek the presidency are like the Dalai Lama, humble and self-effacing. Obama and Hillary? Two sweeties. Not an ounce of ego between them.

Even our former colonial masters put in their two pence. Nader’s “egotism and cult of left-wing purity has been an utter disaster for the values he affects to espouse,” railed the UK Independent. Nader’s values would fare better, apparently, were he to shut up and keep them to himself.

Is Ralph really a spoiler? To answer “yes,” you have to buy three assumptions:

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February 28, 2008

From Day One…

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February 27, 2008

Obama’s Farrakhan Dilemma

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Earl Ofari Hutchinson, New America Media, February 27, 2008

Here’s what a spokesperson for Democratic Presidential contender Barack Obama said when he got wind of former Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan’s virtual endorsement of Obama’s White House bid, “Senator Obama has been clear in his objections to Minister Farrakhan’s past pronouncements and has not solicited the minister’s support.” Farrakhan made the glowing tout of Obama at the NOI’s annual Savior’s Day confab in Chicago. Obama’s denunciation of Farrakhan was blunt and pointed. But he did not reject Farrakhan’s implied endorsement.

Even after Hillary Clinton publicly demanded that he forcefully reject Farrakhan’s endorsement, Obama waffled. He weakly said after more Clinton cajoling that he rejected the endorsement. He still did not mention Farrakhan by name. A candidate shouldn’t need to be prodded by his opponent to emphatically reject the endorsement of a controversial, and in the case of Farrakhan, much vilified figure. Obama, of course, does not endorse Farrakhan’s views, politics, or his organization, and he has made that clear on more than one occasion.

Yet his failure to flatly say he does not want his endorsement is no surprise. Farrakhan may be a controversial and much vilified figure but he is not a fringe figure within black communities. He is still cheered and admired by thousands of blacks. They are also voters too and most have embraced Obama with almost messianic zeal. This zeal has been a driving force in powering Obama’s surge past Clinton. Many blacks are exhilarated by the prospect that a black man will sit in the Oval office. In other words, Obama is a racial fantasy come true for many blacks.

Few blacks publicly demand that he assume the role of a black leader. They have made no demand that he tell what he’ll do to boost civil rights protections, fight the HIV/AIDS plague, or take strong positions on the other pressing social issues. It’s just as well they haven’t since his image is that of the new generation African-American elected official who thinks and speaks as a unifier and consensus builder, not a racial crusader.

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February 26, 2008

Robert Parry: Why the War on Obama?

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Robert Parry, Consortium News, February 26, 2008

While some cynics still view Barack Obama’s appeal for “change” as empty rhetoric, it’s starting to dawn on Washington insiders that his ability to raise vast sums of money from nearly one million mostly small donors could shake the grip that special-interest money has long held over the U.S. government.

This spreading realization that Obama’s political movement might represent a more revolutionary change than previously understood is sparking a deepening resistance among defenders of the status quo-and prompting harsher attacks on Obama.

Right now, the front line for the Washington Establishment is Hillary Clinton’s struggling presidential campaign, which has been stunned by Obama’s political skills as well as his extraordinary ability to raise money over the Internet. Obama’s grassroots donations have negated Clinton’s prodigious fundraising advantage with big donors.

Powerful lobbies-from AIPAC to representatives of military and other industries-also are recognizing the value of keeping their dominance over campaign cash from getting diluted by Obama’s deep reservoir of small donors. It’s in their direct interest to dent Obama’s momentum and demoralize his rank-and-file supporters as soon as possible.

So, neoconservatives and other ideological movements-heavily dependent on grants from the same special interests-are now joining with the Clinton campaign to tear down Obama by depicting him as unpatriotic, un-vetted, possibly a “closet Muslim.”

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