For Obama

I am not voting today, and things more than likely will be over by the time I get to vote (May sometime), but I thought I should at least note where I stand. I intend to vote for the unity pony.

I wish Dodd had been given more of a chance, but that just didn’t happen. Absent that, I am left with Clinton and Obama as my only realistic choices. Either one (and in the case of Clinton, this is truly depressing for me to state) will be a radical improvement from Bush, and either one will be better than the GOP candidate that is upchucked from the bowels of the “conservative” base. Both have very similar positions on many issues.

So why am I then choosing Obama? A number of reasons, starting with why I am not voting for Clinton, and don’t think you should, either:

1.) Over the past few weeks I have grown weary of the Clintons, and weary really is the right term. They are tiring to the bone. Everything is calculated, nothing is what it seems to be, and they are just too cynical for even me (despite my cardinal sin the past few years being a resounding lack of cynicism and skepticism). Every time I hear her name, every time I hear her voice, I think to myself- “God, I am so sick of the fucking Clintons.” It may be unfair to vote against Hillary because of the din created by her opposition, but I would be lying if I did not admit the role that has played in my decision making. I am just tired of the fuss, the noise, the animosity- I have no doubt the right wing will manage to make Obama public enemy #1 if he wins the nomination, but at least it will be something new. Everything with the Clintons is so recycled, so old, so tawdry. Yes, Hillary, I do need a change.

2.) There is nothing in the Clinton past that makes me believe they will end the war in Iraq, and additionally, I can see her engaging in military adventurism just to prove she is strong on defense.

3.) I don’t see her rolling back (at least willingly) the executive over-reaches of the past 8 years.

4.) I don’t trust her. I just don’t. Flame me all you want, but I think she has the capacity and willingness to be just as secretive as the Bush administration.

5.) I don’t like the company she keeps. Mark Penn, anyone?

Why then, choose Obama?

1.) I trust his judgement. He has been using this to great effect during the campaign, but it is true- on one of the most important foreign policy judgements of my lifetime, Obama was right. This war has been a disaster, should never have been launched, the junior Senator was right, Hillary was wrong, I was wrong.

2.) I like his wife. A lot. Tough, no nonsense, can relate, yet still charming and witty and beautiful. Another point towards Obama’s judgement. Hillary, on the other hand, chose Bill.

3.) I like the company he keeps- his list of national security/foreign policy advisors includes a group of clear-thinking, pragmatic folks.

4.) I like the impact he has on people. I am a cynical bastard, but I really have enjoyed the fact that he really does seem to inspire people. I have somehow been immune to his charms (and mocked them), but I am not oblivious to the impact he has had on others. That is a good thing.

5.) He is young, and from a new generation. It is time for new blood.

So there you have it. Some rational reasons, some irrational reasons, but all reasons nonetheless. I intend to support Obama for the nomination, and should he lose, I will hold my nose and vote for Hillary.






148 replies
  1. 1
    DougJ says:

    I’m voting for Obama for pretty much the same set of reasons. His 3) is big for me. I realize he may not have had a lot of foreign policy experience but the things he says about foreign policy are the smartest of any of the candidates.

  2. 2
    Punchy says:

    News that makes me smile.

    The thought that millions of Evangellys will sit on their mitts on Election day simply because McCant’s dropped an F-bomb or two is friggin music to my ears.

    This is salvo #1 in the coming Civil War that will be the Batshit Insane Social Connys vs. The Somewhat Moderate Realists. Party IMPLOSION in 3….2…..1….

  3. 3
    Anna says:

    Agreed. In fact – so sick of the Clintons – I don’t think I could even hold my nose to vote for her.

  4. 4
    Elvis Elvisberg says:

    I feel more or less the same way.

    That said, your point that the policy differences between the two are not that huge is important. There’s no sense getting all upset, as a reality aficionado, if she is the nominee, even if I do feel a stronger pull toward Obama.

    It is pretty sad and bizarre that the centrist Clinton era was marked by huge political polarization, while the radical (in substance and process) Bush era hasn’t really seen much in the way of opposition from Congress.

  5. 5
    dAVE says:

    Yep, me too and Wisconsin may yet mean something. I think our nation needs inspiration and it won’t come from another Clinton. I think Obama bring in new blood, a new generation and has an appeal to young people that may help bring in new voters. It’s time for a change!

  6. 6
    Gabe says:

    I really like your reasons for supporting Obama. I feel the same way.

    Year after year we hear candidates fashion themselves a ‘breath of fresh air’, but I truly believe Obama is that. American needs new energy. Obama is it.

  7. 7
    Jake says:

    2.) I like his wife. A lot. Tough, no nonsense, can relate, yet still charming and witty and beautiful. Another point towards Obama’s judgement. Hillary, on the other hand, chose Bill.

    WTF? This one is beyond irrational and deep into stoopid. I can say Laura Bush is charming, witty, intelligent and attractive without changing my opinion that her husband is the biggest dick in the universe.

  8. 8
    NonyNony says:

    Yeah I came to the same conclusion once both Dodd and Edwards dropped out – for pretty much the same reasons, though my ordering would be different (#2 for Clinton is my #1 reason for not voting for her, for example).

    Your #5 for Obama is interesting – a new generation already? It says something that we’ve had exactly two presidents from the Boomer generation and people are already looking for someone younger. I’m not sure what it says exactly, but it’s worth considering what that means.

  9. 9
    Chris says:

    I’d like to expand on the issue of trust. Clinton has a clear trust problem. Obama, on the other hand, has a clear record of favoring greater transparency in the federal governemnt. It may be a cliche, but there really is no disinfectant quite like sunshine.

    And I know this will rub some the wrong way, but as a feminist, albeit a male one, I have a hard time getting enthusiastic about a woman who has essentially co-opted her husband’s record and experience as her own. I’d rather our first female president be a woman who runs on her own accomplishments.

  10. 10
    Ninerdave says:

    You’re supporting Obama, but not voting.

    How is that supporting Obama?

  11. 11
    Wilfred says:

    Well said. With you all the way, John.

  12. 12
    demkat620 says:

    I have no problem with Senator Clinton, but I am exhausted by candidate Hillary. Mark Penn(scuzzbucket), Howard Wolfson(pitviper), and Terry MacAuliffe(asshat) turn my stomach.

    I like her just fine where she is in the Senate.

  13. 13
    Carnacki says:

    I endorsed Cthulhu even though I’ve got a Draft Carnacki for President instead of Bloomberg campaign. I guess that makes me Cthulhu’s stalking horse.

  14. 14
    Jake says:

    Ninerdave, Only the Republicans vote in West Va. today. And they have delivered their delegates unto Huckabee. It might be worthwhile checking RedState for some fine whine.

  15. 15
    John Cole says:

    You’re supporting Obama, but not voting.

    How is that supporting Obama?

    OK. I will hold my official personal Democratic primary today and I cast my vote for… OBAMA! OBAMA WINS, 1-0.

    Non-snark response: The Democratic primary is in May in WV. Only the Republicans convention was today.

  16. 16
    Zifnab says:

    Honestly, I think 1) is a cop-out of an excuse when picking a President. 2-5 more than make up the gap however.

    WTF? This one is beyond irrational and deep into stoopid. I can say Laura Bush is charming, witty, intelligent and attractive without changing my opinion that her husband is the biggest dick in the universe.

    Oh boo! You can’t honestly be comparing Barak Obama to George Bush. Is a guy not allowed to look at his Presidential Candidates and say, “Hey! Not only do I like Candidate A’s policy and platforms, I like his wife’s attitude and charisma! Bully for her.”

    I know a few people who objected to John Kerry based on Terrisa, and while I thought it was silly to decide a vote based purely on someone’s spouse, its equally silly to dismiss the future First Lady in one’s calculations.

    Ironically enough, I’ll be voting in the Republican Primary this March, backing an ex-school teacher and parent of a friend down here in Texas. So I’ll be voting Ron Paul for President, assuming he sticks around in the race.

  17. 17
    Ninerdave says:

    OK. I will hold my official personal Democratic primary today and I cast my vote for… OBAMA! OBAMA WINS, 1-0.

    Non-snark response: The Democratic primary is in May in WV. Only the Republicans convention was today.

    Yeah I’m a fuckin’ idiot. Realized that you don’t vote until mid May as a Dem in WV.

  18. 18
    Pooh says:

    John Cole!

    Warms my heart to see an old crank do the right thing. Well played, sir.

  19. 19
    Snark Based Reality says:

    So John,

    How does it feel to be supporting MoveOn.org’s candidate of choice? :P

  20. 20

    […] John Cole gives five good reasons against Clinton and five good reasons for Obama. I agree 100% on all 10. […]

  21. 21
    TheFountainHead says:

    I think there are a lot of Americans who feel just as you do, John. America has a lot of fatigue. Hillary not only brings some of that with her, she has embodied it in this campaign at times. Obama may not be the Magical Unity Pony we’d like him to be in a perfect world, but his optimism is as useful to us now as it is infectious.

  22. 22
    Bubblegum Tate says:

    It is pretty sad and bizarre that the centrist Clinton era was marked by huge political polarization, while the radical (in substance and process) Bush era hasn’t really seen much in the way of opposition from Congress.

    Excellent point.

    Clinton kinda bugs me, too, but if she ends up getting the nod, I’ll be able to vote for her without too much nose-holding.

  23. 23
    Chris says:

    John, looks like Huckabee’s taken your home state (and my birth-state). McCain/Huckabee is looking like more and more of a sure thing.

  24. 24

    I’m going to caucus for Obama on Saturday, not because I prefer his positions — I prefer hers where they differ — but for John’s reason #5. She hasn’t shown the ability to take a position in conflict with her husband’s advisers, and, in particular, with Mark Penn. Sorry, Hillary, that’s not working.

    (And TOS? I checked — McAuliffe is running her campaign.)

  25. 25
    Jake says:

    Oh boo! You can’t honestly be comparing Barak Obama to George Bush. Is a guy not allowed to look at his Presidential Candidates and say, “Hey! Not only do I like Candidate A’s policy and platforms, I like his wife’s attitude and charisma! Bully for her.”

    I used Bush as example to show no matter how you slice it, it’s bullshit anti-logic. Who knows why Person A decides to hook up with Person B (in some cases decades ago)? I don’t.

    I heard people express reservations about Gore because of Tipper’s Censorshit crusade and it was around then I decided spouses got nothing to do with it. One reason I don’t care for HRC is because she keeps waving WJC around like a talisman. Gag and also puke.

  26. 26
    Mr Furious says:

    I can say Laura Bush is charming, witty, intelligent and attractive

    You can, but you’d be lying. Unless you think Paxil-induced hazes and Jokeresque smiles are hot, and marrying an alcoholic cokehead after three months is a sign of wit and intelligence.

  27. 27
    empty says:

    1.) Over the past few weeks I have grown weary of the Clintons, and weary really is the right term. They are tiring to the bone. Everything is calculated, nothing is what it seems to be

    I remember thinking that way about Gore. God it was so tiring to hear about one more lie: Love canal/internet/love story/texas fires/ Still voted for him because Bush scared me. Last seven years man would I have liked to be tired by Gore.

    2.) There is nothing in the Clinton past that makes me believe they will end the war in Iraq, and additionally, I can see her engaging in military adventurism just to prove she is strong on defense.

    I agree. Nothing in Obama’s present says he will either.

    3.) I don’t see her rolling back (at least willingly) the executive over-reaches of the past 8 years.

    Nobody willingly gives up power. She won’t and Obama won’t. Unless they are forced to by Congress. And as this time the republicans will want to roll back the power I am sure Harry Reid will be accommodating.

    4.) I don’t trust her. I just don’t. Flame me all you want, but I think she has the capacity and willingness to be just as secretive as the Bush administration.

    Can’t argue against faith.

    5.) I don’t like the company she keeps. Mark Penn, anyone?

    I suppose I could list some homophobe for Obama

    Why then, choose Obama?

    1.) I trust his judgement. He has been using this to great effect during the campaign, but it is true- on one of the most important foreign policy judgements of my lifetime, Obama was right. This war has been a disaster, should never have been launched, the junior Senator was right, Hillary was wrong, I was wrong.

    He was right. As were most people who actually thought about the issue. He is definitely intelligent. Though I am not sure he would have voted any different from Hillary in that vote. He has a capacity for “keeping his options open” which makes me suspect he would have voted in the same wrong way.

    2.) I like his wife. A lot. Tough, no nonsense, can relate, yet still charming and witty and beautiful. Another point towards Obama’s judgement. Hillary, on the other hand, chose Bill.

    See Jake above.

    3.) I like the company he keeps- his list of national security/foreign policy advisors includes a group of clear-thinking, pragmatic folks.

    Dennis Ross? Ivo Daalder? Anthony Lake?

    Though to be fair there are several people in his group I like. And there are several people not named Madeline Albright in her group that I like.

    4.) I like the impact he has on people. I am a cynical bastard, but I really have enjoyed the fact that he really does seem to inspire people. I have somehow been immune to his charms (and mocked them), but I am not oblivious to the impact he has had on others. That is a good thing.

    His impact on others scares the shit out of me. The fact that he is a conniving politician is par for the course. But that he convinces people that he is the second coming – man that sends shivers up my spine. And not in a good way.

    5.) He is young, and from a new generation. It is time for new blood.

    !

  28. 28
    Doubting Thomas says:

    Well, hell, now this site’s gonna be as boring as Daily Kos…

    It’s a long time till November. I don’t think I can take much more unity.

  29. 29
    billw says:

    THAT was GREAT. John Cole speaks for me. Every word. Every word except for the not voting today part that is. I’ve got about 3 1/2 hrs till they open the doors, and I can’t wait.

  30. 30
    MNPundit says:

    4.) I don’t trust her. I just don’t. Flame me all you want, but I think she has the capacity and willingness to be just as secretive as the Bush administration.

    I agree with you that she will be secretive, but I think that is largely the result of the insane attacks against her in the 90s–and let’s be honest, no one has ever fired the hatred of the rightists as much as the Clintons. No one. She had to adopt that kind of mentality to survive.

    And while I respect that she did survive, I agree. I want done with secrecy it’s the only way we can salvage a government of and by the people.

  31. 31
    Andrew says:

    I can say Laura Bush is charming, witty, intelligent and attractive without changing my opinion that her husband is the biggest dick in the universe.

    You could say that, but then I’d wonder why you did because she’s a weirdly cold and creepy automaton with a crazy smile that gives me the willies.

  32. 32
    Daniel Munz says:

    3.) I like the company he keeps- his list of national security/foreign policy advisors includes a group of clear-thinking, pragmatic folks.

    Yeah. A corollary here is that while the Dubya years have taught us to see “inexperienced” and “dumb as shit” as one and the same, I don’t think they are. While Obama is relatively inexperienced on the international stage, all the evidence points to his being smart as living fuck. You don’t get to be the (first black) editor of the Harvard Law Review by being a huge incurious hick.

  33. 33
    chris says:

    Aww, you brand new Democrats are sooo cute, with your rational reasons and all.

    Just want to pinch your cheeks.

    I’m voting for Obama too, but I’ve been a Dem since ’92. I’ve gone native, so I don’t need no rational reasons anymore.

  34. 34
    ThymeZone says:

    Wow. A great post, and a great choice, for great reasons.

    Congrats.

  35. 35
    seaMD says:

    Would people please stop saying that Obama was right about the Iraq war? Lots of us were, but we weren’t in Congress at the time and neither was he. How has he voted since then? And how many politically sensitive votes has he skipped since becoming a Senator?

    Read eriposte at http://www.theleftcoaster.com for a better analysis of the two remaining candidates. John’s reasons sound more like choosing a class president than President of the United States.

  36. 36
    Zifnab says:

    Vote Obama! because, I mean, did you see him in that picture of People Magazine? I’d hit that!

  37. 37
    maxbaer (not the original) says:

    Great lists. As a resident of the Empire State, I did my civic duty for Obama today. I’m perfectly happy to have Hillary as my senator from now to eternity, but she’d be a little scary as prez. Altho, obviously not as scary as any of those freaks on the Republican side.

  38. 38
    Tsulagi says:

    2.) There is nothing in the Clinton past that makes me believe they will end the war in Iraq, and additionally, I can see her engaging in military adventurism just to prove she is strong on defense.

    Of course it’s simply a matter of personal perception, but I see the opposite. I see nothing that keeps me from thinking the Unity Pony could be led by The Tards on the other side of the aisle just as easily as the Dem congress has since the midterms. He wants to transcend politics. Go beyond all that. Create true bipartisanship to craft a new way forward.

    Kumbaya bullshit. I’ll take one Dodd hold over any number of months of transcendy talk Obama can deliver. I think Obama is a decent guy, but I think he’s too naive.

    Hillary on the other hand is no innocent. She has no illusions as to those in the Party of Bush. When needed, I think she would stick a knife in them, and probably get some satisfaction in doing so, while Obama would be trying to work the charismatic transcendy talk toward “can’t we all just get along?” Just as tired as anyone else should be always hearing the names Clinton and Bush, but that’s not a reason for me to vote Obama.

  39. 39
    Davebo says:

    Empty said

    I agree. Nothing in Obama’s present says he will either.

    I suppose if he personally carved this into your forehead it might sink in.

    Q: Is Petraeus correct when he says that the troop increase is bringing security to Iraq?
    A: There is no doubt that because we put American troops in Iraq, more American troops in Iraq, that they are doing a magnificent job. They are making a difference in certain neighborhoods. But the overall strategy is failed because we have not seen any change in behavior among Iraq’s political leaders. That is the essence of what we should be trying to do in Iraq. That’s why I’m going to bring this war to a close. That’s why we can get our combat troops out within 16 months and have to initiate the kind of regional diplomacy, not just talking to our friends, but talking to our enemies, like Iran and Syria, to try to stabilize the situation there.

  40. 40
    Creamy Goodness says:

    Megan McCardle of The Atlantic has this to say about Obama in her endorsement today, which seems like it might appeal to the denizens here:

    He’s slightly to the left of Hillary on goals, but he’s well to the right of her on process. His goal is not more government so that we can all be caught up in some giant, expressive excercise of collectively enforcing our collective will on all the other people standing around us in the collective; his goal is improving transparency and minimizing government intrusion, while rectifying specific outcomes.

  41. 41
    feral1 says:

    #1 Reason- I don’t think Hillary can win a general election.

    #1B

    John’s #2 There is nothing in the Clinton past that makes me believe they will end the war in Iraq, and additionally, I can see her engaging in military adventurism just to prove she is strong on defense.

  42. 42
    TheFountainHead says:

    Read eriposte at http://www.theleftcoaster.com for a better analysis of the two remaining candidates. John’s reasons sound more like choosing a class president than President of the United States.

    Cause when I think analysis, I think theleftcoaster.

    And no, he wasn’t in the Senate at the time, but he was in a position of visibility and guess what, he stood up and said something about it. And the rest of his votes since then, which are in line with Hillary’s in lockstep stem from the following reality:

    “You break it, you bought it.”

    We have soldiers, our own sons and daughters, dying over there on a near daily basis, you want Obama to make a principled stand that will count for nothing more than principle on War funding when our men and women need body armor and transportation vehicles that aren’t deathtraps?? Yeah. Okay.

  43. 43
    Z says:

    Well, John, I’m just glad you took the bag off your head and admitted that it was you, all along, sitting next to us on the the Magical Unity Pony.

  44. 44
    Jeffro says:

    Zifnab funny!

    I’m voting for Obama because of the severe case of buyer’s remorse I expect I’d feel if Hillary was the nominee. Or to put it more accurately (since I’m not voting for or ‘buying’ her) – it’s more like a severe case of “stuck with” if she manages to win the Dem nomination.

    And McCain would beat her, I have no doubt. She has nowhere to go nationally but down. Even my Republican dad is thinking about jumping on the Obama bandwagon. Only ‘thinking about it’, but it’s a start…

  45. 45
    Calouste says:

    Your #5 for Obama is interesting – a new generation already? It says something that we’ve had exactly two presidents from the Boomer generation and people are already looking for someone younger. I’m not sure what it says exactly, but it’s worth considering what that means.

    Well, the Boomer generation was born from 1945-1960, that’s 15 years. They have now had the presidency for 16 years with Clinton and Bush II, so they have had their share, and people feel it’s time to move on.

  46. 46
    Jake says:

    Unless you think Paxil-induced hazes and Jokeresque smiles are hot, and marrying an alcoholic cokehead after three months is a sign of wit and intelligence.

    Attractive and Hot are not synonyms. From what little I’ve heard her say she’s got a fuck of a lot more brains and heart than the Cokehead-in-Chief.

    I’m willing to bet that if you sat down and thought of all the people you know who are witty, intelligent etc, etc, you’d be able to come up with at least one who is in a relationship with a dumb, ugly brute. Who the fuck knows why people get in and stay in relationships? I don’t. But when someone runs for office, I don’t care.*

    *I wouldn’t vote for him anyway, but if a candidate is running as a protector of family values and has a collection of wives and wet suits I reserve the right to snark.

  47. 47
    Jen says:

    I just wanted to say that I have always pictured the Pony looking like this (it’s really a unicorn). This is a hilarious book that I have, and my judgment is completely uncolored by the fact that McSweeney’s once web-published me. (I have very low standards, obviously.)

  48. 48
    Pelikan says:

    What Calouste said, plus, if we’re lucky we won’t ever have to hear a bunch of gasbags rehashing Vietnam and the fucking hippies again.

    The war was wrong, communism was bad, a bunch of young people did stupid things. Enough already.
    At least with Obama, we won’t have to watch a bunch of pathetic old men arguing about what happened in that tropical hellhole decades ago, and frankly, I don’t see the democrats running jet pilot veterans for truth against McCain.
    God, I hope I don’t eat those words.

  49. 49
    Stooleo says:

    Hillary, on the other hand, chose Bill.

    I never really thought about it in that way, but its really telling. I was listening to NPR’s “on the media” last weekend and they were discussing Hillary’s appearance on Tyra’s Banks Show. On the show she was asked why she stayed with Bill after the whole Monica Affair. So she gave some BS answer about in her heart she knew it was the right thing to do. The NPR show commentators then stated that it was pretty common knowledge among the Clinton biographers, that Hillary had no allusions about Bill’s behavior before getting married and knew that it, (Bill’s cavorting) should be expected.

    So who is she, a faithful wife who forgave her philandering husband or a woman with and unstoppable thirst for power who even let her own dignity get in the way of her goal.

    BTW. My wife and I have a deal where if we ever get the opportunity, we can have sex with a famous person. Mine is Penelope Cruz. She just switched hers from Bill Clinton to Barak Obama.

  50. 50
    Neal says:

    Jen:

    I just wanted to say that I have always pictured the Pony looking like this (it’s really a unicorn). This is a hilarious book that I have, and my judgment is completely uncolored by the fact that McSweeney’s once web-published me. (I have very low standards, obviously.)

    Dude, that is so awesome. I bought the fiance a unicorn puzzle book for Christmas. She got me a unicorn beanie baby recently. This is an ongoing joke amongst us and our friends.

  51. 51
    TheFountainHead says:

    If you need another reason to think Hillary will do or say anything to play things in her favor, here’s one.

  52. 52
    binzinerator says:

    I never understood Hillary Hate — it’s so obvious it springs from personal psychological reasons that I’m immediately put off by it (it’s only reason why I no longer read Sullivan’s blog, and it used to be an everyday ritual) …. BUT even though I don’t hate Hillary …

    All of what John said, except for the spouse thing.

    Although I think Bill Clinton does have some of those traits (He doesn’t relate to people? He can’t be charming or witty? News to me.) I need to learn more about who Michelle Obama really is before I can agree fully with that statement.

    But oh yes, I think she’s beautiful. And sexy too. Off the top of my head I’d say Obama’s got damn good taste in women, and if she’s all that John says she is, Obama’s married the kind worth marrying.

  53. 53
    chopper says:

    during any other time, i’d really consider pulling the lever for clinton. the clintons are really good at running the show when the country is in good shape (such as the 90’s). not very effective at all when major housecleaning needs to occur.

    while i don’t see obama magically turning around absolutely every crappy policy put in place by the bush administration, i see him doing much more than clinton would, especially when it comes to overreaching executive power.

  54. 54
    Jen says:

    It’s a great book, Neal, if your humor tends to the absurd. It is also tilted in favor of unicorn lists.

    Test: Do you enjoy lists like:

    Things You Don’t Hear At An Art Gallery Opening
    3. Who do I have to fuck to get a Capri Sun over here?

    There are so many. A really long list of logical questions posed by the “Devil Went Down to Georgia”…(“How much could a golden fiddle possibly be worth, anyway? Maybe eighty grand? For your IMMORTAL SOUL?”)…Things that Bush Administration has done that if they were done in a movie you’d say “No, they can’t do that”…

  55. 55
    Yawb says:

    ‘Tough, no nonsense, can relate, yet still charming and witty and beautiful.’

    Beautiful? Man you need to have your eyes checked. Great figure, yes, but not beautiful.

  56. 56
    Punchy says:

    You can, but you’d be lying. Unless you think Paxil-induced hazes and Jokeresque smiles are hot, and marrying an alcoholic cokehead after three months is a sign of wit and intelligence.

    Furious comes out swinging!!

  57. 57
    jonst says:

    By god you are right…..I am soooooo tired of the Clintons! The only groups I am more tired of are the MSM types who try and pick the Dem nominee, time and time again. And the types are give a shit what Bill does re his sex life. And what Hillary should do about it. Stay? Go?……but short of those two groups, i am tired of the Clintons. And then you posted that list of advisers….and I thought, shit, Clinton has the worst list of advisers a Dem could possibly come up with. Screw them. I’ll go with Obama. He just made the sale.

  58. 58
    Digital Amish says:

    I agree with all of John’s bullet points, even point 2 (shows good judgement). I’m a little old to get all fuzzy about any candidate but I have a feeling that Obama could make good use out of the bully pulpit. Better use than urging us to go shopping in response to national crisis, anyway. It would be nice to tune into a presidential address and not react with rolling eyeballs and an imediate search for Seinfeld re-runs.

  59. 59

    I have voted in every election since 1972. Today was the first time I actually felt proud of my vote. I voted for Barack Obama.

  60. 60
    Jen says:

    “Who’s judging this contest, anyway? It’s the devil, right? How is that a fair contest? Is Johnny maybe mentally handicapped?”

    Damn, that’s a funny book. I’ll quit talking about it now. Thanks for your patience.

  61. 61
    myiq2xu says:

    It may be unfair to vote against Hillary because of the din created by her opposition, but I would be lying if I did not admit the role that has played in my decision making.

    They attack her and Bill relentlessly for 16 years and (partially) on that basis you want to vote for someone else.

    So if Obama wins who are you voting for 4 years from now?

    Quitters never win John, and winners never quit. Ask Eli.

  62. 62
    Perry Como says:

    How does it feel to be supporting MoveOn.org’s candidate of choice?

    Anyone know who Cindy Sheehan has supported?

  63. 63
    Spaceman Spiff says:

    John, I think point 5 is all I need. Don’t get me wrong, I think HRC is certainly qualified to be president, and I will likely be resigned to vote for her should she be the Democratic nominee. But I think the lifeblood of democracy is, well, *fresh* blood. We need new ideas from new people from new generations–not just more virtual political dynastic succession.

    I feel the same way about McCain. Had the Republicans been smart, they would’ve pushed for new blood as well and given conservatives a real choice this year between more of the same or starting over fresh (and by starting fresh I don’t mean Jeb Bush). That is, someone who is not a usual suspect, who has new ideas, and who just might make conservatives reevaluate their priorities and actually give Democrats a run for their money on *ideas* and not just hate. But then again, conservatives by definition don’t want change, do they? Well, I’m at least trying to give the benefit of the doubt here. Maybe I’m just too naive.

    Even though I feel conservatives are largely responsible for the bitter tone of political discourse over the last 20 years, HRC is in my mind, rightly or wrongly, a casualty of all that intense hatred. I just don’t think I could stand another 4-8 years of spiteful conservative attacks on a Clinton as I might be able to do so on someone new. I want something more, and better, and different.

    (Sigh)

  64. 64
    Joy says:

    Exactly why I changed my vote to Obama. You put it into words better than I could. I think there are a lot of people like us out there.

  65. 65

    Cindy Sheehan is going to endorse the McCain/Nader ticket this fall.

  66. 66
    myiq2xu says:

    I remember thinking that way about Gore. God it was so tiring to hear about one more lie: Love canal/internet/love story/texas fires/

    But Gore DIDN’T lie, they did.

    If Obama wins the nomination the GOP noise machine and the lap dog media are going to attack him worse than they did the Clintons.

    Maybe we should quit while we’re ahead.

  67. 67
    Chris says:

    I’m ready. Michelle Obama can be America’s Claire Huxstable.

  68. 68
    myiq2xu says:

    How does it feel to be supporting MoveOn.org’s candidate of choice?

    How did Obama vote on the MoveOn/Petraeus resolution?

    I believe the answer is “not present”

    HRC voted against it.

    Isn’t it ironic?

  69. 69
    ThymeZone says:

    Anyone know who Cindy Sheehan has supported?

    Cesar Chavez?

  70. 70
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    I’m voting for Obama today. I’ve voted in one more election than The Grand Panjandrum so I’m not at all starry-eyed. I’m voting for Obama because he represents a clean break with the politics of the past. I’m voting for him because he doesn’t tell me what he can do he tells me what we can do.

  71. 71
    Graeme says:

    I agree 100%. I’m an erstwhile GOP voter. I hate Hillary, and I simply won’t vote for prez if she’s the nominee.

    I already voted for the unity pony here in CA. I trust his judgment more than I trust anyone else in the race. If I were going to vote GOP, I’d vote RP. But I can’t reward this party with a vote yet.

    I like that Obama’s got good ideas on the tech front, I like that he’s sorta talking about decriminalizing dope, I like that he wants to start to roll back our asinine policy on Cuba, I like that he doesn’t want to mandate that I’ll buy health care (even though I buy it now, myself), etc.

    I love that he favors transparency. I know they’re making sausage in the legislature, but I think we should all learn more about the ingredients. If they can mandate something fucking stupid like SOX, let’s see that they have the same sort of transparency/oversight in the legislature.

    Maybe that’s just a revenge fantasy, but… That’s the biggest reason I ain’t voting GOP no matter what this year: I will not reward them for this stupid war! Or all this stupid debt. The GOP never cleans house. They just point fingers and whine about how the Donks are worse.

    Fine. I’m voting Donk to see if that’s really the case. After this disaster of an administration, I doubt it will be.

  72. 72
    Jen says:

    Dennis converted! The kool-aid was yummy, wasn’t it? Strawberry!

  73. 73
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    Dennis converted! The kool-aid was yummy, wasn’t it? Strawberry!

    Oddly enough, it tastes like hope and optimism.

  74. 74
    Davebo says:

    If Obama wins the nomination the GOP noise machine and the lap dog media are going to attack him worse than they did the Clintons.

    Maybe, maybe not.

    The question is, how will the general public view those attacks? And could the attacks backfire when aimed at Obama but perhaps gain footing when aimed at Clinton?

  75. 75
    eric says:

    Jake-
    Although you’re point about Laura being nice and her husband being an asshole is well taken, here are some key differences:

    Laura:
    Inspired by her second grade teacher, she earned a bachelor of science degree in education from Southern Methodist University in 1968. She taught in public schools in Dallas and Houston. In 1973, she earned a master of library science degree from the University of Texas and worked as a public school librarian. In 1977, she met and married George Walker Bush.
    Note: this is from the presidential website, so this is her “best foot forward” biography.

    Michelle Obama:
    Michelle’s impressive resume includes: Former associate dean at the University of Chicago; a member of six boards of directors including the prestigious Chicago Council on Global Affairs, the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools and Tree House Foods; and Vice President, Community and External Affairs at the University of Chicago Hospitals. In this position she was responsible for all programs and initiatives that involve the relationships between the hospitals and the community as well as management of the hospitals’ business diversity program.
    http://www.squidoo.com/michell.....-biography
    This is probably a bit gushy, but again, this is “best foot forward” level.

    A schoolteacher/librarian vs. a lawyer that has held numerous positions with city organizations. Also, Barack is clearly not as stupid as Bush. Just saying.

  76. 76
    Con Mhac says:

    Oddly enough, it tastes like hope and optimism.

    Personally I like the taste of hope, but optimism just makes me twitch.

  77. 77
    Gus says:

    Megan McCardle is for Obama? That makes me second guess myself. I’m torn. I think either Obama or Clinton could make a decent president. I’d rather Obama win because I, too am pretty sick of the Clinton’s, but it would almost be worth Hillary winning just to watch heads explode across the right. Sully’s meltdown would be especially delicious.

  78. 78
    myiq2xu says:

    The question is, how will the general public view those attacks? And could the attacks backfire when aimed at Obama but perhaps gain footing when aimed at Clinton?

    Or vice-versa?

  79. 79
    The Other Steve says:

    Agreed. Same reasons. We really need change, fresh blood, a new direction. I don’t see that with Hillary.

    I like the company he keeps- his list of national security/foreign policy advisors includes a group of clear-thinking, pragmatic folks.

    This is interesting. I didn’t know Richard Clarke was advising. That’s big. Clarke’s book Against all Enemies was incredibly interesting to me. I recommend it, if you really want to understand what happened between 1988 and 2002.

  80. 80
    The Other Steve says:

    I’m fairly certain Cindy Sheehan would be a Ron Paul supporter. Maybe Mike Huckabee.

    After all the Democrats are responsible for the IRS, all wars of the 20th century, and the evil gold standard.

  81. 81
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    I just read that Clinton has accepted a Fox News sponsored debate scheduled to air February 11th. Clinton campaign pollster Mark Penn stated in a conference call today that the Clinton campaign would like to see a debate between her and Obama once a week until the end of the contest.

    Aside from the nausea quotient of doing anything for Fox News, I thought that the Democrats took a pledge last Spring to appear only in DNC sponsored debates.

  82. 82
    JL says:

    After casting my vote for Obama today, I smiled. It felt good and although, I don’t think he’s the answer to all our prayers, I do think he has better judgment when it comes to foreign affairs.

  83. 83
    Dug Jay says:

    Like so much else of Obama’s campaign – it’s a fantasy based on the hopes of saps like Cole that his coronation would usher in an idyllic era when the Democrats and Republicans would join together in harmony and do….what? Why enact liberal policies, of course? But we’ll feel happy doing it because Saint Barack is in the White House. His campaign is based on a fantasy….

    Amen.

  84. 84
    NonyNony says:

    The question is, how will the general public view those attacks? And could the attacks backfire when aimed at Obama but perhaps gain footing when aimed at Clinton?

    Never count on a candidate to be covered with Teflon. Ever. When the attacks come, some percentage of the population will believe them.

    The danger with Obama is that a lot of his support comes from young, new voters. It’s a demographic that traditionally doesn’t come out and vote because they’re usually disappointed in having to pick between the “lesser of two evils”. If Obama is the nominee, then expect a good chunk of the Republican campaign to be about depressing that vote. Not converting them over to vote for the Republican, but convincing them either that “there’s not a dime’s worth of difference between the two parties” or that Obama is a big fat power-hungry phoney. It’ll be months of slinging mud, calling out everything in his past in as negative a light as possible, and turning penny-ante land deals into the Teapot Dome scandal.

    Count on it – the GOP is keeping their powder dry right now because they’re tearing into each other and they hate Hillary something fierce. But when the knives come out it will be nasty, bloody and brutal – and designed to convince idealists to stay home.

  85. 85
    Carol says:

    My primary isn’t until the 4th of March, but I will vote absentee for the Unity Pony. Before, I would have probably held my nose and just voted for the winner (I was yearning for Gore). But now, I want Gore to endorse him! That says something about the taste of the new Kool-Aid.

  86. 86
    Jamey says:

    Both candidates would be equally adept at building a legislative consensus. Their policies aren’t poles apart (I think Hil’s better on health care; Obama fuming about the Social Security “problem” was just triangulation) What I’m concerned about is building a consensus among the electorate, specifically, a Chief Exec who won’t make those who voted against him or her feel like they’ve got neither a say in matters, nor a stake in the president’s successes. Bush and Rove pretty much rat-fucked all but the 50%+1 who voted for them. So we need a daddy, a mommy, and a nanny to put us at ease. Obama could better fill those roles.

    Obama seems much more likely to mend the sundered fabric of our nation. Hillary would be great at the functional parts of the presidency, but miserable at the symbolic ones, at least domestically. I think she’s been treated unfairly, but that she bears some responsibility for ongoing abuse because of the way she’s responded to her critics.

    Obama.

  87. 87
    Davebo says:

    But when the knives come out it will be nasty, bloody and brutal – and designed to convince idealists to stay home.

    But will it work?

    I just don’t see young idealist voters who attended an Obama rally and jumped on board suddenly getting depressed and staying home because of something Sean Hannity said.

  88. 88
    SmilingPolitely says:

    I don’t think I could even hold my nose to vote for her.

    I’m now at that point. Her crawling to Faux News to hold a debate is the last straw.

    Even if she wins the Democratic nomination, I’m staying home.

    If Barack agrees to this bogus debate on Faux, fuck him, he will lose my support.

  89. 89
    Andrew says:

    Shit, McCardle is endorsing Obama? That’s enough to make me reconsider.

    Well, no, not really. It just feels good to say that.

  90. 90
    Jess says:

    I was skeptical about Obama for a long time, largely for the reasons Empty offered:

    His impact on others scares the shit out of me. The fact that he is a conniving politician is par for the course. But that he convinces people that he is the second coming – man that sends shivers up my spine. And not in a good way.

    I changed my mind over the weekend for much the same reasons as John. What finally decided me was the part in the last debate when he calmly and firmly stated that we are scapegoating illegal immigrants, and blaming them for unemployment isn’t going to solve the problem.
    Clinton in contrast gave a wishy-washy answer calculated not to offend the immigrant haters. That bit of political courage on Obama’s part, and yet another example of Clinton’s political cowardice, was the last straw that got me out in the nasty weather to vote for the MUP this afternoon.

    That said, I still have a great deal of respect for both the Clintons, and will have no problem supporting her if she wins the nomination. We all know the right has done their best to destroy them both as political figures, and it’s clear to me that’s because of their strengths, not their sins.

  91. 91
    Wilfred says:

    Her crawling to Faux News to hold a debate is the last straw.

    Obama should be able to read this with his eyes closed – they will try to bury him if he shows up. Clinton is McCain’s best chance to win and Obama is the right’s nightmare. Bit desperate on her part, I think, strange bedfellows and all.

  92. 92
    Cain says:

    I think what John’s trying to say about Michelle is that a woman of that calibre would not be easy to attract and woo if she didn’t see something in Obama that matched her own strength. It’s not just about attractiveness but people like Michelle aren’t going to just pick anyone to marry. Sh

    If Obama can attract someone like Michelle that says something about Obama.

    The Clintons have something else going on. It’s a marriage of mutual exploitation. It works for them, I imagine. Nobody really knows the real Hillary except her inner circle. So everything is just speculation.

    cain

  93. 93
    PeterJ says:

    Megan McCardle is for Obama? That makes me second guess myself.

    Ann “Batshit Crazy” Coulter is for Clinton.

  94. 94
    Jess says:

    Obama seems much more likely to mend the sundered fabric of our nation. Hillary would be great at the functional parts of the presidency, but miserable at the symbolic ones, at least domestically. I think she’s been treated unfairly, but that she bears some responsibility for ongoing abuse because of the way she’s responded to her critics.

    Word.

  95. 95
    Svensker says:

    Jonathan Schwartz at A Tiny Revolution has a piece up today about Obama and Clinton’s differing reactions to Israel’s bombing of Syria a few months ago:

    Here’s Clinton:

    CLINTON: [W]e don’t have as much information as we wish we did. But what we think we know is that with North Korean help, both financial and technical and material, the Syrians apparently were putting together, and perhaps over some period of years, a nuclear facility, and the Israelis took it out. I strongly support that…there was evidence of a North Korea freighter coming in with supplies. There was intelligence and other kinds of verification.

    And here’s Obama:

    OBAMA: Now, we don’t know exactly what happened with respect to Syria. We’ve gotten general reports, but we don’t know all the specifics. We got general reports in the run-up to the Iraq war that proved erroneous, and a lot of people voted for that war as a consequence.

    Reason #6 to vote Obama. Which I did this morning and it felt great!

  96. 96
    Denise says:

    Dick Cheyney has effectively immunized Bush from impeachment. If he wins the primary, Obama might think of doing the same: immunizing himself from wingnuts. Who better than Hillary? Rush and his ilk would throw themselves on a grenade to keep her out of the Oval Office. Perhaps that was in the minds of Californians who applauded that suggestion?

  97. 97
    myiq2xu says:

    Count on it – the GOP is keeping their powder dry right now because they’re tearing into each other and they hate Hillary something fierce. But when the knives come out it will be nasty, bloody and brutal – and designed to convince idealists to stay home.

    The lap dog media is part of the GOP noise machine. They have their Hillary-Hate on right now, even with the distraction of the GOP circular firing squad. But once there is a GOP nominee, they will give their undivided attention to the Democrats.

    Ask yourself why the media are attacking Hillary but not Obama. Could it have something to do with who the GOP would rather face in November?

    The noise machine turned boring, straight-arrow Al Gore into a habitual liar and a smarmy know-it-all. He was so disgusted he quit politics. They turned Kerry, a bona fide war hero, into a coward and a phony.

    Look at all the attacks and allegations against the Clintons during the last 16 years and then ask yourself:

    What did they really do to deserve it?

    Bill Clinton campaigned as a moderate. but the wingnuts claim he is an ultra-liberal. The Clintons didn’t go to Washington to get rich or to help their friends get rich. They went there because they wanted to help and serve the people of this country.

    Were they ambitious? Hell yes, it goes with the territory. Everyone who runs for high public office is ambitious, including the Obamas.

    The Clintons are called “divisive” and “polarizing” not because of anything they’ve done, but because the right-wing hates them. I understand that they are hated, but I never understood why. The wingnuts hated Bill and Hillary long before they found “reasons” for their hate.

    The whole “triangulation” meme is based on the idea that Bill and Hillary took positions that were calculated to be between the extremes, i.e “the middle.” (That’s why the lefties hate them, they think the Clintons sold out.)

    There were wingnuts talking impeachment before Bill ever took the oath of office. It was Gingrinch, Limbaugh and the GOP/VRWC that used wedge politics and political hate speech, not the Clintons. The Clintons have never demonized or tried to destroy people.

    Bill Clinton is a “good ole boy” from Arkansas and the wingnuts foam at the mouth hating him and Hillary. They accused Bill of rape, multiple murders, drug dealing as well as numerous lesser offenses based on nothing. Reverend Jerry Falwell was selling videos on his church programs allegedly proving some of these charges.

    Google “Mena airport” and see what floats up out of the septic tank. Mike Huckabee released Wayne Drumond, a convicted murderer and rapist, from prison because the Clinton haters claimed (without proof) that Bill framed him. (Drumond went on to rape and murder some more.)

    Ken Starr spent years and $70 million trying to find something on the Clintons, and the only thing he ended up proving was that Bill lied about getting a blowjob from an adult woman who wasn’t his wife. But the wingnuts hate Hillary for that too. They hate her because they claim she is a lesbian, hate Bill for cheating on her and hate her for staying married to him. WTF?

    Now we’re supposed to believe that Obama can transcend the politics of personal destruction and bring everyone together with the force of his personality. Do you really think they will treat Barack and Michelle better than they did Bill and Hillary?

    I voted for Hillary today mostly because I don’t want to let the haters win.

    But if Obama wins the nomination I’ll be riding the Magical Unity Pony.

  98. 98
    Nicole says:

    It makes me crazy when people say they oppose Hillary because they can’t take the idea of 4 or 8 more years of Clinton-bashing by the right-wingers. All that means is the right wingers don’t need to prove a case to persuade you; they just need to yell loud enough and you will do what they want you to. And we’re mad at the Democrats for kowtowing in Congress? Basically, they’re doing the same thing- doing anything to try to stop the shouting.

    Don’t vote for her because you don’t like her policies; f*ck what the right-wing media is going to say. Welcome the hatred.

    Of course, I proudly voted (via absentee) for Edwards last week, five days before he dropped out, so take from that what you will. :(

  99. 99
    Jamey says:

    What more can the RWNM throw at “Hitlery” (that they have’t yet)? Besides, I think that strategy will backfire: people will have Hitlery-bashing fatigue, or just plain bashing fatigue, since Sir Straight-talks-alot likely will get shit on worse–possibly by the same people who are trashing Hil (Rush, Hannity, and their ilk fear more for their position in the GOP firmament than they do a Democratic president: The former deprives them of relevancy; the latter just gives them more material to work with).

    I just feel that, rightly or wrongly, public opinion is hardened against Hillary, and that she’d be yet another polarizing force in the White House.

    Gee, I guess this is kinda like electing a prom king/queen.

  100. 100
    myiq2xu says:

    Don’t vote for her because you don’t like her policies; f*ck what the right-wing media is going to say. Welcome the hatred.

    Conservatives hated FDR too. Still do, in fact. He was partisan, divisive, and polarizing.

    It took conservatives nearly 50 years to recover.

  101. 101
    myiq2xu says:

    As I see it, the big difference between Obama and Hillary is that he’s black, male, younger and is a better speechifier.

    I like to poke fun at the concept that Obama has transcended race, politics, etc. Hence, the “Magical Unity Pony.” What a crock of shit!

    Obama is a lawyer and a politician. Not only that, he is a product of Chicago machine politics. Expecting him to be pure and innocent is like looking for a virgin in a whorehouse.

    Truthfully, my biggest issue with Obama is I don’t think he’s ready for prime-time. He was only a Senator for two years when he decided he was gonna run for the top spot.

    The Big Dog wasn’t ready for prime-time when he got to Washington either, which is a lot of the reason his first 4 years were such a cluster fuck.

    The other thing that bugs me about Obama is his tendency to echo right-wing meme’s. Maybe that’s just for show, but he doesn’t have enough of a track record to be sure. I’d hate to see him get elected and then set up office in Wingnuttia. If he is really a liberal and can unite people, why not unite them over here on the left?

  102. 102
    Jon H says:

    “If Obama wins the nomination the GOP noise machine and the lap dog media are going to attack him worse than they did the Clintons.”

    Maybe, maybe not.

    My theory is that they’ll side with whoever will be more fun to write about for 4-8 years. They were *bored* with Gore, so they threw him over the side. They didn’t like Kerry, and there was always the possibility that the Bush administration would implode in term 2.

    I would think they’d side with Obama because he’d be more interesting than a geriatric ward.

  103. 103
    LarryB says:

    Elvis Elvisberg Says:
    It is pretty sad and bizarre that the centrist Clinton era was marked by huge political polarization, while the radical (in substance and process) Bush era hasn’t really seen much in the way of opposition from Congress.

    This pretty much sums up what is wrong with the Democratic party. The Right is radical, focussed, uncompromising, and ruthless. The Left is pretty much in the weeds, with most Democrats hovering just to the right of “liberal” and just wanting to get along. You describe the results of “bipartisanship”, when it comes from only one side. The Glenzilla has the stats if you don’t believe me.

    This gets me to my basic Hillary/Obama quandary:

    On the one hand, Hillary hatred is a feature, not a bug. Whoever is the Democratic nominee will get the exact same treatment. The Clintons at least have been there, done that, and have frequently come out on top. What other modern Democratic figure can you say that of?

    On the other hand, the Swift Boaters have to start pretty much from scratch with Obama. Unlike with HRC, they don’t have decades of false smears established in the minds of voters they can revive and leverage. Maybe that will give Obama the breathing room he needs to get his footing in D.C.

  104. 104
    myiq2xu says:

    I would think they’d side with Obama because he’d be more interesting than a geriatric ward.

    Do you have any empirical evidence to support that theory?

    Do you really think the LDM and the VRWC decide on their own what to do?

  105. 105
    myiq2xu says:

    On the other hand, the Swift Boaters have to start pretty much from scratch with Obama. Unlike with HRC, they don’t have decades of false smears established in the minds of voters they can revive and leverage. Maybe that will give Obama the breathing room he needs to get his footing in D.C.

    That’s what’s called a “blank slate.” They can create any picture they want to.

    Al Gore and John Kerry had long public careers including military records. That didn’t stop the noise machine from sliming them.

    Obama is an virtual unknown without much of a record.

  106. 106
    Jon H says:

    “Do you have any empirical evidence to support that theory?”

    Bob Dole, 1996. 72 year old war hero. Lost to Clinton, badly.

  107. 107
    myiq2xu says:

    Bob Dole, 1996. 72 year old war hero. Lost to Clinton, badly.

    And in 1996 the RWNM was pro-Clinton and anti-Dole?

    Clinton won in 1996 because he took on and beat the RWNM and the VRWC.

    That’s what really pisses of the wingnuts – The Clintons are the only Democrats since 1980 they can’t beat. They threw everything including the kitchen sink at them and the Clintons keep winning.

    Can you say “electable?”

  108. 108
    Jon H says:

    “Can you say “electable?””

    Hillary is not Bill, and 2008 is not 1996.

  109. 109
    Zifnab says:

    That’s what’s called a “blank slate.” They can create any picture they want to.

    Al Gore and John Kerry had long public careers including military records. That didn’t stop the noise machine from sliming them.

    Obama is an virtual unknown without much of a record.

    And when the noise machine can’t get any actual slime, they’ll just make shit up.

    That said, this is not 2000. People have had eight years of slime campaigns and the “I Hate Gays! I Hate Muslims! I Hate Liberals!” platform isn’t what it used to be. I’ve already seen crooksandliars showcasing a “study” suggesting that Obama is the most liberal Senator currently presiding in the Senate. This isn’t the insult it was in ’00 or ’04. What are the Republicans going to whine about? Another round of “cut and run” bullshit? More “madrassa”? Bring it.

  110. 110
    Z says:

    myiq,

    I posted this on another website regarding Clinton. I think if you haven’t spent a lot of time arguing with Republicans you love (like most of my family), you just don’t get how they think. Its not nearly as important how the Redstaters or pundits think, it is how the baby-boomer Republican voter across this country thinks that is the real issue.

    The typical Republican on the street hates her. The reasons for that are complex, but that is just a fact. You can blame the right-wing noise machine, if you want to, but that isn’t the whole of it. The Clinton’s carry a huge amount of 1960’s baggage. The right-wing attacks work, BECAUSE of that baggage. It was the same with John Kerry. All it took to get my dad frothing at the mouth about the evils of John Kerry was to flash that picture of him sitting a few rows back from Jane Fonda at an anti-war rally. To my mom, Hillary is the living embodiment of the feminist women who condemned stay-at-home moms, like her. The occasional snide comment from Hillary reinforced her view. She absolutely hates her. My parents reflexively distrust anything the Clinton’s do and anyone they work with, and they are certainly not alone in that attitude. When a big chunk of the PUBLIC, not just the pundits, has that attitude, how are you supposed to get anything done? It’s impossible!

    Now take Obama… neither of my parents dislike the guy. He isn’t carrying around those highly emotional 60’s buttons. He doesn’t talk ideology (which boomers completely fixate on), he talks about specific issues and the need to solve specific problems in a way that is respectful to the other side. When the right-wing noise machine starts pummeling him, they are just going to look mean. Kerry and Clinton handed them a huge pile of generational ammunition, but with Obama, they don’t have a whole lot to work with. They can disagree on issues, and ramp up the rhetoric there, but that’s it!

  111. 111
    Doubting Thomas says:

    The only groups I am more tired of are the MSM types who try and pick the Dem nominee, time and time again.

    And they are doing it this time as well, surely you see that. Obama is the media’s choice until the conventions, then they’ll turn on him in favor of McCain.

    Hopefully, he’ll be ready.

  112. 112
    Carol says:

    The young voters who vote for Obama are unreachable by the VRWC. They don’t listen to Rush, Hannity. The demographics for the VRWC are retired and up, the angry Reagan Democrats angry about race and diversity. These kids have lived all their lives in a rainbow world, multiracial, multicultural, and increasingly open to gays and people of no faith. They don’t watch the TV preachers either.

    They listen to Ipods, surf the net, listen to Net Radio and YouTube-as long as they feel like it. They are not the great-grandparents who listen faithfully all day long passively to someone telling them what they should think.

  113. 113
    Nicole says:

    Conservatives hated FDR too. Still do, in fact. He was partisan, divisive, and polarizing.

    It took conservatives nearly 50 years to recover.

    :) I especially got a kick out of the movement to take his face off the dime and put Reagan’s on it.

  114. 114

    The demographics for the VRWC are retired and up, the angry Reagan Democrats angry about race and diversity.

    Um…no. This is something I know about far, far too well, and…no.

    The VWRC has a far different audience than you realize, and kids make up a bigger part of it than you imagine.

  115. 115
    Zifnab says:

    And they are doing it this time as well, surely you see that. Obama is the media’s choice until the conventions, then they’ll turn on him in favor of McCain.

    Hopefully, he’ll be ready.

    I honestly don’t know. This may be a perfect storm for Obama, where everyone coalesces around him as a candidate. I can definitely see the star-struck media fawning over the young, handsome, passionate, soul-man over a red-faced bitter old man.

  116. 116
    Z says:

    There is the Jesus camp kids and the home-schooled, but they are a minority.

  117. 117
    myiq2xu says:

    I posted this on another website regarding Clinton. I think if you haven’t spent a lot of time arguing with Republicans you love (like most of my family), you just don’t get how they think.

    I am going to stop reading and respond now because you’re waaaaay wrong. Not only am I related to several, like John Cole I used to be one.

  118. 118
    jimbo says:

    Hate Clintons? Well, fuck you. John, when I first read you I thought how refreshing, a winger who saw through the bullshit. But you brought with you all the limbaugh hatred for the Clintons you should have left at the door. By expressing it here you have opened the door for a bunch of jerkoff trolls whose deepest fear is that the Dems will have a candidate who says and explains what she is for, unlike Obama. I’ll vote for Obama when I can hear him say what he is for, or when he’s the last one standing.

    Clinton hatred came about because of pieces of shit like limbaugh and the dirty tricksters in the repugly party. How many years before this country will be in the same shape it was when bush took over? No wars, budget surplus, shrinking national debt, on and on. HRC has stated priorities like getting the troops out of Iraq, making sure children have healthcare and better educational opportunities, on and on.

    You’re disappointing me, John. Are you a troll? Everyone knows bush is a failure. You don’t have to restate. But our future depends on getting a strong candidate, and you’re hatred toward Clinton does nothing to further that possibility.

  119. 119
    jcricket says:

    Conservatives hated FDR too. Still do, in fact. He was partisan, divisive, and polarizing.

    As Greenwald has pointed out recently, partisan, divisive and polarizing are good things if the other side is full of young-earth-creationist, torture-enabling, war-mongering, voodoo-economic-supporting nutjobs.

    How hard would it be for the leading Democrats to start saying, “Bipartisanship is only the right way to go if your opponents make sense. But since Republicans no longer do, we’ll have to go it alone”. And hammer that kind of point home. Don’t engage in substantive debate with people who have no intention of doing the same. The same people have no intention of meaningful compromise either, so point that out too.

    That Democrats haven’t even tried to paint the Republicans as out-of-touch obstructionists, despite 2x the record for filibuster-like tactics in the Senate is telling.

  120. 120
    jcricket says:

    There is the Jesus camp kids and the home-schooled, but they are a minority.

    Sadly, the number of women and children who come out and vote GOP is much higher than you might think. I’m always shocked at the percentages.

    I know that might change in 10-20 years time, as the “rainbow world” kids come of age, but only if those same kids actually vote.

  121. 121
    jcricket says:

    You’re disappointing me, John. Are you a troll? Everyone knows bush is a failure. You don’t have to restate. But our future depends on getting a strong candidate, and you’re hatred toward Clinton does nothing to further that possibility.

    I dunno. I’m voting for Clinton (during primary season), but will happily vote for Obama (no nose holding required) if he’s the nominee. I don’t think John’s naive enough to be one of those Obama supporters who thinks he’s immune to the attacks, although that’s the one thing that worries me.

    I think the examples of the smearing of Gore, Dean and Kerry should be great reminders of how far the GOP will go with any Dem nominee. They’re good at it and very well funded, and so far we suck at responding. If Obama doesn’t learn those lessons, he could be in big trouble, despite the tidal wave of “world events” on his side this time around.

  122. 122
    John Cole says:

    Hate Clintons? Well, fuck you. John, when I first read you I thought how refreshing, a winger who saw through the bullshit. But you brought with you all the limbaugh hatred for the Clintons you should have left at the door. By expressing it here you have opened the door for a bunch of jerkoff trolls whose deepest fear is that the Dems will have a candidate who says and explains what she is for, unlike Obama. I’ll vote for Obama when I can hear him say what he is for, or when he’s the last one standing.

    I am sick of the bickering associated with the Clintons. Fucking sue me.

    If she wins the nomination, I will vote for her, gladly.

  123. 123
    AkaDad says:

    My biggest reason after the war vote, was electability. She has more baggage than Logan Airport, and she will unite the Republicans like no other Democratic politician.

  124. 124
    myiq2xu says:

    The Clinton’s carry a huge amount of 1960’s baggage.

    Explain.

    All it took to get my dad frothing at the mouth about the evils of John Kerry was to flash that picture of him sitting a few rows back from Jane Fonda at an anti-war rally.

    A war hero decides the war is wrong based on his personal experience. He sits near someone else at an anti-war rally. Ignore the fact that they were right.

    To my mom, Hillary is the living embodiment of the feminist women who condemned stay-at-home moms, like her.

    Who were these feminist women? Names please. I guarantee Hillary wasn’t one of them.

    My parents reflexively distrust anything the Clinton’s do and anyone they work with, and they are certainly not alone in that attitude.

    True, but whose fault is that?

    It’s impossible!

    No, it’s not. Yes we can!

    Now take Obama… neither of my parents dislike the guy. He isn’t carrying around those highly emotional 60’s buttons.

    Not yet, he isn’t.

    He doesn’t talk ideology (which boomers completely fixate on), he talks about specific issues and the need to solve specific problems in a way that is respectful to the other side.

    Give me an example of Hillary talking ideology and of her talking about a specific issue in a way that isn’t respectful of the other side.

    When the right-wing noise machine starts pummeling him, they are just going to look mean.

    Will they look kind and gentle telling lies about Hillary? It already backfired in New Hampshire.

    Kerry and Clinton handed them a huge pile of generational ammunition,

    Not really, they made it up.

    but with Obama, they don’t have a whole lot to work with. They can disagree on issues, and ramp up the rhetoric there, but that’s it!

    You expect them to tell the truth about him? Why would they start now?

  125. 125
    empty says:

    I suppose if he personally carved this into your forehead it might sink in.

    Move aside Jack Bauer – Davebo is here! The cult of Obama gets down to brass knuckles (behind their keyboards).

    Q: Is Petraeus correct when he says that the troop increase is bringing security to Iraq?
    A: There is no doubt that because we put American troops in Iraq, more American troops in Iraq, that they are doing a magnificent job. They are making a difference in certain neighborhoods. But the overall strategy is failed because we have not seen any change in behavior among Iraq’s political leaders. That is the essence of what we should be trying to do in Iraq. That’s why I’m going to bring this war to a close. That’s why we can get our combat troops out within 16 months and have to initiate the kind of regional diplomacy, not just talking to our friends, but talking to our enemies, like Iran and Syria, to try to stabilize the situation there.

    So before you poke my eye out could you tell me
    1. How is that prescription different from Hillary?
    2. Where does it say Obama is going to take the US military out of Iraq. Not just “combat” troops. You might notice he makes damn sure to keep that “combat” qualifier in his speeches.

    Regardless of who gets elected, unless the Iraqis force us to do other wise the occupation will continue.

  126. 126
    myiq2xu says:

    The young voters who vote for Obama are unreachable by the VRWC.

    Proof?

  127. 127
    Z says:

    Ok, myiq, I misjudged you. I apologize for that. What I know is WHY my family hates Clinton, and I know that it wasn’t just the Right Wing Noise Machine (RWNM). The things that got them in a froth about Clinton won’t work on Obama. They were willing to believe the slime about the Clintons and Kerry because they had their own issues with them. Issues that had to do with grievances stretching back to the 60’s, when Obama was born.

    What’s more the RWNM has over-played their hand, which is why you are seeing on-the-street Republicans ignoring them and coalescing around McCain. So, I’m sorry. I’m not afraid they are going to sink his candidacy. They aren’t the reason I’m an Obama supporter. He is simply a better candidate.

    And I know I join in the teasing about the MUP, but I think his approach is just better. Coalition building and addressing the other sides concerns works. I’ve seen it work, where going on the attack doesn’t. The Republicans are weak right now. They don’t have Delay to force them to march lock-step and punish them if they step out of line. They are very vulnerable to being peeled off to work on specific issues. Granted, it is going to be very, very hard to get them to budge on the war (no matter who gets elected), but things like passing spending bills, funding infrastructure, cap and trade, etc. These are the things he will have a much better shot of actually addressing. Too many people focus on their own specific issues. There is a lot of the regular business of government that has been neglected because of partisan grand-standing. That has GOT to stop.

  128. 128
    myiq2xu says:

    I am sick of the bickering associated with the Clintons. Fucking sue me.

    So they get smeared, slimed and relentlessly attacked, and you’re sick of it so you’re going to vote for someone else.

    Who are you going to vote for after they’re done trying to destroy Obama?

  129. 129

    Indeed, Hillary Clinton has indicated she would roll back presidential power. In October and sometime more recently but I can’t find the link there.

    (From link above):

    “I think you have to restore the checks and balances and the separation of powers, which means reining in the presidency,” Clinton told the Boston Globe’s editorial board.

    Although Bush has issued hundreds of signing statements, declarations that accompany his signature on bills approved by Congress, Clinton said she would use the statements only to clarify bills that might be confusing or contradictory. She also said she did not subscribe to the “unitary executive” theory that argues the Constitution prevents Congress from passing laws limiting the president’s power over executive branch operations.

    Vote for whomever, but perhaps be more informed than looking to politicians for your better self.” (gag)

    – Temple

  130. 130
    Z says:

    myiq,

    Look, I agree that Kerry took a principled stand, but I am not my father. As far as he is concerned, he thinks Kerry aligned himself with the hippies spitting on soldiers, with Hanoi Jane. This isn’t rational, it is emotional, and it is REAL. My mom has the same sort of emotional reaction to feminists. Granted, she raised me to be whoever I wanted to. But when Hillary made that comment about, I think, not staying home and baking cookies or something, that punched her right where she was sensitive. That isn’t a fake grievance either. My mom attended plenty of work parties for my father, and she remembers every one of the woman who asked what she did for a living and made a contemptuous comment when she said she stayed at home. She remembers every time feminists in the 70’s made comments about how women who stayed at home were betraying their sisters, all that crap. The RWNM gets their issues, and that’s why their attacks worked.

  131. 131
    myiq2xu says:

    The things that got them in a froth about Clinton won’t work on Obama. They were willing to believe the slime about the Clintons and Kerry because they had their own issues with them. Issues that had to do with grievances stretching back to the 60’s, when Obama was born.

    What gets them in a froth? Being anti-war? Using drugs? Feminism?

    What exactly did the Clintons do to deserve what they’ve been put through?

    BTW – The Clintons, Obama and me are all baby-boomers. the Clintons are just a few years older. (I’m a year older than Obama.)

  132. 132
    Hypatia says:

    He is young, and from a new generation. It is time for new blood.

    Why? He is also inexperienced. Inexperience hurt Kennedy. It hurt Clinton in his early years in office. I’m not saying experience is everything, judgment is at least as important, but this ‘time for new blood’ stuff is silly. Hillary is about sixty. Not exactly time to buy the farm or check in to the old folks’ home.

    You like his wife? Support the guy, sure, but do try to come up with something better than this. You sound worse than poor Todd Gitlin.

    A schoolteacher/librarian vs. a lawyer that has held numerous positions with city organizations. Also, Barack is clearly not as stupid as Bush. Just saying.

    Laura Bush comes of a different generation and background than Michelle Obama. Bright, well read girls became schoolteachers and/or librarians as a rule, not lawyers. Two honorable lines of work often held by intelligent, dedicated people, even if most of them happen to be women.

    Bush is not stupid. I loathe the man, but he is not dumb. He’s ignorant and incurious, but it’s not the same thing.

  133. 133
    myiq2xu says:

    Coalition building and addressing the other sides concerns works. I’ve seen it work, where going on the attack doesn’t.

    Give me examples of where either Bill or Hillary didn’t try to build a coalition and address the other sides concerns.

    (That’s exactly what her 1992-93 health care fiasco was an attempt to do.)

    Then give me examples where they (either one) “went on the attack” instead.

    She remembers every time feminists in the 70’s made comments about how women who stayed at home were betraying their sisters, all that crap.

    And how is that going to affect Michelle Obama? As John Cole pointed out, she’s hardly the epitome of a 60’s stay-at-home mom.

  134. 134
    myiq2xu says:

    And how is that going to affect Michelle Obama? As John Cole pointed out, she’s hardly the epitome of a 60’s stay-at-home mom.

    Let me add that all woman politicians will have the same career woman vs stay-at-home mom dilemma.

  135. 135
    myiq2xu says:

    As far as he is concerned, he thinks Kerry aligned himself with the hippies spitting on soldiers,

    That’s a straight up right-wing myth. Give me a specific example of a “hippie” spitting on soldiers.

  136. 136

    myiq2xu, I largely (though hardly completely) agree with you but you’ll be easily tuned out if you don’t take the pleading down a notch – and a few less posts.

    – Temple

  137. 137
    myiq2xu says:

    myiq2xu, I largely (though hardly completely) agree with you but you’ll be easily tuned out if you don’t take the pleading down a notch – and a few less posts.

    Sorry, but I’m heavily outnumbered. Care to help?

  138. 138
    myiq2xu says:

    “If Hillary wins, she will have done so against the insurmountable weight
    of 16 years of being the target of misogny and hatred that have focused
    into a narrative that has also been appropriated by many of the “left”
    to take her down — and certainly by the media.”
    — Jane Hamsher

    What she said.

  139. 139
    Duane says:

    So all this time you’ve been savaging Obama across the threads, myiqq2xu, you’ve actually been supporting Hillary? I recall you clamed to be an Edwards supporter.

    Apples don’t fall too far from the tree.

  140. 140
    Duane says:

    And when Obama wins the nomination, maybe you will turn out to actually be a Republican..?

  141. 141
    The Raven says:

    Caw! You’re picking a real conservative. Caw!

  142. 142
    Jess says:

    Sorry, but I’m heavily outnumbered. Care to help?

    myiq2xu,

    It’s not a pillow fight–it’s a discussion. And the people you’re arguing against aren’t even here (Z’s parents, for example). I get your frustration about the irrationality of the hatred directed towards the Clintons, and believe me I share it, but Z is trying to explain the dynamic, not justify it.

    I appreciate the explanation because I’ve been trying to understand it since ’92. The Clintons are exceptional but flawed people, have made mistakes but have sincerely tried to better the lives of average Americans, even the ones who hate them. They are ambitious and enjoy their power, yes, but seem pretty consistent about working for the greater good. They aim high and fall flat on their faces at times. I have never seen them overtaken by hate; Bill in particular has shown himself to be a humane and generous man. And somehow this particular package of good and bad evokes not just disagreement, but insane hate from their opponents. That’s just the reality of the situation, and unfortunately we need to work with that reality.

    I’ll happily support whoever gets the nomination, but I’m hoping it’s Obama. Not because it’s fair, but because I think it will be better for the morale of the country. I’ll be really happy if he picks Clinton as his running mate, though.

  143. 143
    empty says:

    It’s not a pillow fight—it’s a discussion.

    The kind of personal crap that has been flung at myiq2xu says that for many Obama fans it is a pillow fight.

  144. 144
    Beej says:

    John, your #3 is the top priority as far as I’m concerned. I will vote for whichever candidate will restore the Constitution to its place of primacy. Unfortunately, I haven’t heard any questions on this subject asked of either Clinton or Obama at one of the debates. Have you? So I guess it’s just blind faith that makes me think Obama may be more willing to live with Congressional oversight, warrant requirements, and the duty to enforce laws enacted by Congress rather than skirting around them with signing statements. Oh well, sometimes blind faith is all you have.

  145. 145
    myiq2xu says:

    So all this time you’ve been savaging Obama across the threads, myiqq2xu, you’ve actually been supporting Hillary? I recall you clamed to be an Edwards supporter.

    I was, but he dropped out.

  146. 146
    Blue Jean says:

    And somehow this particular package of good and bad evokes not just disagreement, but insane hate from their opponents. That’s just the reality of the situation, and unfortunately we need to work with that reality.

    Unfortunately, insane hatred will be whipped up against ANYONE who wins the Democratic nomination. The day after the primary fight is over, the new nom will become Public Enemy Number One, regardless of whether it’s Obama or Hillary. Yes, the reasons may be different, but not the reaction. They did it to Dukakis. They did it to Clinton. They did it to Gore. They did it to Kerry. And yes, they’ll do it to Obama too, much as they may be singing his praises now.

    I know Hillary can take the inevitable heat. I’m not sure Obama can.

  147. 147
    Sharon says:

    I gotta agree, the slime machine will slime, that’s it’s reason for existing.
    And though I like both Obama and Hillary, yesterday I voted the top slot for her, kind of as a poke in the eye to the haters. They’ve demonized her (and Bill) for years, mainly because the Clintons made it to the White House. That was their biggest sin, everything else was just chaff.

  148. 148
    shaker o salt says:

    Let’s face it, John. You’re not voting for Hillary because she’s a woman and you obviously have woman hating issues, k?

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