Going for the White vote…

Newt_GOP-Confederate logo_sm

Folks wonder how Newt plans to build a base for his run for the White House. After all, he has a thirty-plus year record as a complete fuck-up to deal with–but to be fair that record has been sold with word strings clever enough to fool the pundit class into thinking they are rooted in ideas. Still, support from his Beltway pals would never put Newt over the top.

What might help is catering to White anxiety and fear over a changing world–this is especially true for white males. Racism has a role to play in this, but one can make blatant appeals to this fear without being personally racist. Gingrich is building his campaign on making these appeals to fear–and in doing so he will come to the line of racist rhetoric. And from time to time he will cross over it. But that will be OK for Newt because he is a Republican.

Take his statement in the opening days of his campaign. In a speech back down in Georgia, he expressed his Republican Confederate Party credentials by telling a White Southern audience that:

I believe the gap between where the people in this room and the vast majority of the people of Georgia would take America and where President Obama would take America is so enormous that this will be the most consequential election since 1860.

Newt is bonding with his audience by letting them know that he agrees that the threat posed by Barack Obama is just as bad as the threat posed by that Black Republican, Abraham Lincoln 150 years ago. And there may be some truth to this fear if your concern is to preserve White Supremacy. Exploiting that fear is what Newt’s code talking campaign is all about.

Newt also brought out the lazy young bucks on food stamps meme of his early years in Congress with this bit:

You want to be a country that creates food stamps, in which case frankly Obama’s is an enormous success. The most successful food stamp president in American history. Or do you want to be a country that creates paychecks?

And for good measure he called for the return of the literacy test that needs to be passed before you could vote:

“You know, folks often talk about immigration. I always say that to become an American citizen, immigrants ought to have to learn American history. But maybe we should also have a voting standard that says to vote, as a native born American, you should have to learn American history.”

What could possibly go wrong if Americans had to pass a history test designed and administered by wingnuts before they could vote? Boy oh boy, that Newt is just full of ideas straight out of the Jim Crow handbook.

And that’s no surprise because Newt is a code talker. He has been doing this “politics of grievance” shit for 40 years. There has never been a base for his policies, his Party or for him, but there a lot of white folks in America who can be scared, fooled and enraged–and if you put enough of a scare in ’em these white folks will do almost anything. There may even be enough of them voting in the GOP primary to give Newt the nomination if he can mobilize this White Fear into his base. And judging from the opening days of his campaign, that looks exactly like what “The Professor” has planned.

He was lightly called out on this strategy today when he was on Meet the Press. David Gregory played the “Food Stamp President” quote and asked Newt:

MR. GREGORY: First of all, you gave a speech in Georgia with language a lot of people think could be coded racially-tinged language, calling the president, the first black president, a food stamp president.

Newt–of course–took offense and played the white victim card in a response that kept the code talking front and center (extra points for spotting them):

REP. GINGRICH: That’s, that’s bizarre. That–this kind of automatic reference to racism, this is the president of the United States. The president of the United States has to be held accountable. Now, the idea that–and what I said is factually true. Forty-seven million Americans are on food stamps. One out of every six Americans is on food stamps. And to hide behind the charge of racism? I have–I have never said anything about President Obama which is racist.

MR. GREGORY: Well, what did you mean?

REP. GINGRICH: Well, it’s very simple. He has policies–and I used a very direct analogy. He follows the same destructive political model that destroyed the city of Detroit. I follow the model that Rick Perry and others have used to create more jobs in Texas. You know, Texas two out of the last four years created more jobs than the other 49 states combined. I’m suggesting we know how to create jobs. Ronald Reagan did it. I was part of that. We know how to create jobs. We did it when I was speaker. And, and the way you create jobs is you have lower taxes, you have less regulation, you have litigation reform. When the New York Stock Exchange puts its headquarters at Amsterdam, Holland and, by the way, follows 40 other companies in the last year; when General Electric pays zero in taxes; there’s something fundamentally wrong with the current system. The Obama system of the National Labor Relations Board basically breaking the law to try to punish Boeing and to threaten every right-to-work state. The Environmental Protection Agency trying to control the entire American economy by bureaucratic fiat. The Obama system’s going to lead us down the path to Detroit and destruction. I think we need a brand-new path. It’s a path of job creation. And one of the central themes of this campaign is going to be paychecks vs. food stamps.

Newt Gingrich may or may not be a racist, but he is doubling down on the code-talking and has promised to make if the theme of his campaign. But I doubt Newt is a real White Supremacist because he is first and foremost a grifter–and a grifter doesn’t really believe anything. He will say whatever helps him to con the mark. And for “The Professor” the marks are are white voters fearful of a changing world. Newt will give them people to blame, fear and hate for change with the hope that he can ride their wave of rage all the way to the White House.

Newt’s not crazy. Mobilizing White fear is a potent and sometimes deadly political tool. It had proven to be a well worn and successful political path over the last 150 years of American History. In 2012, whomever does the best job of mobilizing White fear will become the Republican Confederate Party candidate for President. Newt knows that winning the White Supremacy Primary is the key to the nomination. When wingnuts ask themselves “who can save us from that nigger?”, Newt is betting that they’ll think of him in the voting booth.

And his Beltway media pals will sell his campaign as being “intellectually seriousness”.

Go figure.

Cheers






167 replies
  1. 1
    fhtagn says:

    But maybe we should also have a voting standard that says to vote, as a native born American, you should have to learn American history.

    To be fair, this is probably just Newt’s way of booting Bachmann and Palin out of contention.

  2. 2
    jrg says:

    What might help is catering to White anxiety and fear over a changing world—this is especially true for white males.

    Between you and ABL, I’m getting really sick of this shit.

  3. 3
    Mark S. says:

    Geez, how hard could one of these tests be?

    Ronald Reagan:

    A) Saved America
    B) Ended Communism by telling Gorbachev to “tear down this wall”
    C) Presided over 8 years of budget surpluses
    D) Reinstated the military after Jimmy Carter had abolished it
    E) All of the above

  4. 4
    Robert M. says:

    So, let me get this straight: when charged with using racially charged language in Georgia, Newt’s response was “I just meant he’s going to turn the country into Detroit, which is incidentally inhabited by many poor black people.”

  5. 5
    Linnaeus says:

    Well, it’s very simple. He has policies—and I used a very direct analogy. He follows the same destructive political model that destroyed the city of Detroit.

    Last time I checked, the city of Detroit was still around and had about 800,000 people living in it. Sure, the town’s been hit hard, but Obama’s “political model” (whatever that is) had little to do with it. In fact, I’d say that it’s precisely the political and economic policies that Gingrich advocates that had a hand in putting Detroit in the state it’s in.

    Plus I hate seeing the area where I grew up being used as a punching bag…again. Fuck Gingrich.

  6. 6
    Marc says:

    @jrg:

    Not as sick as folks like me are when we watch vile racism coupled with people outraged about the plague of calling racists …racists.

  7. 7

    @fhtagn:

    To be fair, this is probably just Newt’s way of booting Bachmann and Palin out of contention.

    No, it’s his way of saying “accept our view of history or you don’t get to vote”. It’s also intended to disproportionately disenfranchise voters from lousy school districts, who just coincidentally happen to be browner and more Democratic than the population as a whole.

  8. 8
    Mark S. says:

    Bill Clinton

    A) Ran drugs out of Mena, Arkansas
    B) Murdered Vince Foster
    C) Married a lesbian
    D) Was a rapist
    E) All of the above

    I’m sensing a pattern here.

  9. 9
    furioso ateo says:

    I feel like Dennis G. is going to have a lot of fun following Newt this election cycle.

  10. 10
    JordanRules says:

    Mixing dogwhistles…on the one hand Detroit is code for black, but on the other hand I thought what happened to it is exactly what they wanted to happen to it…
    Now he’s saying I’m going to stop Obama from doing what we did to the black city to your white cities??

  11. 11
    Nellcote says:

    Point taken on wingnut authored history tests but I do think that congress critters should be required to pass the standard citizenship test given to new immigrants.

  12. 12
    fhtagn says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Well, yes, Roger, I did actually understand that. Do I have to mark every joke with JOKE?

  13. 13
    Nellcote says:

    The downfall of Detroit can clearly be blamed on all those union jobs saved by the auto bailout.

  14. 14
    jrg says:

    @Marc:
    The fact that Gingrich panders to racists has fuck-all to do with me as a white male. He panders to white racists, but that is incidental. If he could gain by demogauging against people in wheel chairs, he probably would.

    In other words, if you think that “white males” are the problem, guess what… You’re the problem.

  15. 15

    I have a very strong reaction to Newt Gingrich–it has everything to do with when I formed my political conscience and how appalling I find him–and he hasn’t really changed from his early ’90’s bomb-throwing techniques. But I think the world has–here’s my somewhat optimistic take:

    Gingrich lets these dog-whistles out thinking that the demographic that will respond favorably towards him will be larger than the demographic that is put off. I think he’s thinking about who we all were 20 years ago. I think the defnition of racist as well as bigot have shifted (in that people are more ready to call’em out when they see’em)–and the code has been broken by some parts of the media–if not all.

    Reason I say that–the person who put the “racially coded?” question to him was David for crying out loud Gregory. That really was a mainstream (albeit far too gentle) call-out. Meaning it’s recognized, even if still too easily tolerated. My guess is this will resonate and catch on, though. It has to if David-fricking-Gregory is going to try it–Here’s a narrative : “Newt Gingrich, relic of the ’90’s, tries to wage a campaign oblivious to Youtube. Thinks he can hustle select audiences without offending others. What dumb, antique talking point will he trot out next?”

    I think his whole “secularism” joint is a spin-off of older-people fears about “godless Commies”. He needs to get challenged on relevance. If he’s hit on this shit enough, younger people will peel off: I think he will lose a bunch on his stupid anti-marriage equality blathering, for example. What used to be scary is getting mainstreamed–and someone like Newt might get seen for the repellent parasite he is for trying to reawaken the fear over things that actually aren’t scary.

  16. 16
    fhtagn says:

    @jrg:

    Demographically, the Republican coalition is heavily white and heavily male. That’s just how it is. Speaking as a white male myself I am not happy about the facts, but there’s no point in denying them. And no, I didn’t think much of that infamous post by ABL either.

  17. 17
    JordanRules says:

    Bad day for jrg and Althouse I see. We shall overcome.

  18. 18
    JordanRules says:

    @Vixen Strangely: The fact that he can still say sh*t like this doesn’t quite give me the sense of optimism even with Gregory asking the race question. And the fact that folks on this blog are pissed because it’s pointed out who he’s aiming those whistles at is wierd and even more discouraging to me. But Trump fizzled so I’ll just have to enjoy the 2 steps up 1 step back, then reverse and repeat dance we seem to be doing.

  19. 19
    gnomedad says:

    But maybe we should also have a voting standard that says to vote, as a native born American, you should have to learn American history.

    No worries! All you need is a little edumacation.

  20. 20
    Yutsano says:

    @furioso ateo: He’ll be very disappointed when Newt barely survives Iowa. In fact, I can’t think of a single primary state that would be an instant lock for him. Not even Georgia.

  21. 21
    fhtagn says:

    @Yutsano:

    At least he’s got a ready-made theme song:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cDm_ZHyYTrg

  22. 22
    handy says:

    Since the goal is taking on Obama, couldn’t this post also have been titled Going For The One?

  23. 23
    jrg says:

    @fhtagn: I’m not denying that Gingrich is a scumbag. I’m not denying that race-baiting white rednecks is (and has been) a big part of the GOP’s strategy. I’m not denying Dennis G’s thesis that the GOP panders to the vestiges of the failed state that was the confederacy.

    I’m just saying that blanket statements like “What might help is catering to White anxiety and fear over a changing world—this is especially true for white males.” don’t help… That’s a blanket, racist statement.

    @JordanRules: Focus, moron. Address my argument.

  24. 24

    @JordanRules: Yeah, I hear you–but I chalk Gingrich’s saying that stuff out loud and where people can hear on his own cluelessness, and on the MSM’s reluctance to banish people they’ve accepted as “part of the club”. Take Pat Buchanan (please!). He’s “part of the club”, but he’s clearly got some deep-seated racialist hang-ups. But yeah–it is taken for granted that playing to a white male audience when trying to get votes is an accepted strategy, when there are so very many people in this country that are not white, or are not male, or are neither white nor male. Which statistically should favor liberals, you’d think.

    You’d think. (And then I consider all the intersections that make various people reluctant to vote or skeptical of their voting power, and get really bummed. But still–Gingrich–well more obviously an asshat than in 1994. We didn’t even have the word “asshat”, then!)

  25. 25
    fhtagn says:

    @jrg:

    What might help is catering to White anxiety and fear over a changing world—this is especially true for white males.

    I don’t see how that statement is racist. Gingrich is pandering to older white voters and he’s playing them the same old racist mood music,which has gained some purchase because of the ongoing demographic changes in America. Most of the voters he’s targeting are white and male. Them’s the facts. Not all blanket statements are racist, you know.

  26. 26
    Splitting Image says:

    What might help is catering to White anxiety and fear over a changing world—this is especially true for white males.
    __
    Between you and ABL, I’m getting really sick of this shit.

    I don’t think the issue is that white males are more racist than white females. The issue is that when Gingrich marks off a group of whites to try out his message on, it is frequently true that the men in the audience are not only afraid of the dark-skinned people outside the room, they are afraid of the women on the other side of the room.

    So Newt’s first salvo is a dog whistle about food stamps, and the second is a wink towards the male half of the auditorium that says “Don’t worry; they’re next”.

  27. 27
    Sophist says:

    I believe the gap between where the people in this room and the vast majority of the people of Georgia would take America and where President Obama would take America is so enormous that this will be the most consequential election since 1860.

    This isn’t a dogwhistle, this is a fucking megaphone. How can you pretend this has more that one interpretation?

  28. 28

    @jrg:

    Address my argument.

    And respect his authoritah!

  29. 29
    Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason says:

    Just posted this in the Open Thread, but maybe it’s better suited here:

    Campaign literature from South PA that I saw today: “XXX supports working families and seniors”. OK, sounds good, but let’s flip it:

    “XXX does not support families where the breadwinners are unemployed, nor does he support children.”

    Here’s my question: is this more Southern Strategy dogwhistle, or just the buzzwords that the Village and the Heartland are expecting to hear, without assuming that unemployment and kids are evil?

  30. 30
    JordanRules says:

    @jrg: I like fhtagn don’t see the statement as racist or oppressing you, but if Dennis adding the words ‘probably’ or something like that will make you feel better then I’m all for it so we can get back to what Newt said, you know…focus.

    Edited for clarity.

  31. 31
    Ash Can says:

    @jrg: White conservative males are the backbone of Newt’s party, so that’s who Newt’s going to be pandering to most. And it’s these conservative white males who have given today’s Republican party its Confederate zeitgeist, with its racism and all. There’s nothing racist about saying so, it’s simply fact.

  32. 32
    Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason says:

    But maybe we should also have a voting standard that says to vote, as a native born American, you should have to learn American history.”

    You know, if we’re shutting down the vote, I prefer Robert A. Heinlein’s version: You have to serve your country in order to vote. Either military or some other scutwork job which is assigned to you. Neither of which you have any choice over.

  33. 33
    fhtagn says:

    @JordanRules:

    Help! Help! I am being repressed.

  34. 34
    Lysana says:

    Oh, I knew the sensitized ones would get twitchy at this post. Well done. Afflict the comfortable!

  35. 35

    If one believes — as many, many people incorrectly do — that rights and social standing are a zero-sum game, then the group with the most to fear from a changing world are white males. Is that not the case?

  36. 36
    Mike Kay (Chief of Staff) says:

    I’m shocked!

    I’m shocked!

    And to think, a couple of days ago, a couple of idiots on this blog were angry with me for saying GOP candidates would play the race card in the up coming election cycle.

  37. 37

    @jrg–don’t be pissed that people are insinuating that Newt is trying to recruit white males with racist dogwhistles–be fucking offended that he’s the one assuming that you are racist! If you aren’t, then the fact that he thinks this is a winning strategy should be really creepy to you also, right? And if he’s playing to what he thinks are the fears of white males–?

    He could be targeting any voting demographic, but he’s targeting white males specifically–this is less to do with you as a part of his demographic target than about what he thinks is valuable. Saying “this is his target” isn’t a judgement on you. It’s a judgement about how he sees non-whites and women as less valuable votes. It’s not to put white males down, so much as deride what Newt thinks peope meeting your description actually value–but I will concede that if you are posting here, you are more aware than Newt’s perspective of who you are–yes?

    What I’m very gently trying to say is–Newt’s the one sterotyping you. Be pissed at him.

  38. 38
    Dennis G. says:

    @jrg: Well, at least I’m in good company.

  39. 39
    jrg says:

    @JordanRules: Yes, I think a qualification would have helped. No, I’m not oppressed.

    My issue is with the fact that labeling this kind of racist dog-whistle as a white phenomenon only addresses the proximate cause, not the ultimate cause… Which is that a contemptible pol like Newt can propose no feasible solutions to the actual problems that vex us, but coast on racist claptrap, instead.

    This stuff needs to get called out. I’m glad Dennis does. I wish more did, particularly in the MSM. I’d just rather we look beyond the race of the people falling for it… Otherwise it will happen again, and again, and again.

  40. 40
    Mike Kay (Chief of Staff) says:

    The other day on Hardball, someone from Politico insisted that Newt’s race baiting doesn’t necessarily make him a racist.

  41. 41
    fhtagn says:

    @Mike Kay (Chief of Staff):

    Someone from Politico said that? I am shocked, I tell you, shocked!

    I presume their next trick is to explain that setting fire to orphanages doesn’t make you a bad person, much less an arsonist.

  42. 42
    micah616 says:

    @jrg: So how do you go about addressing the “ultimate cause” while minimizing or ignoring the proximate causes?

  43. 43
    Caz says:

    No credit for balancing the budget in the mid-90’s?? Please don’t tell me you’re giving Clinton credit for that. Newt led the charge to balance the budget, showing not only that it CAN be done, but that Newt has the experience, knowledge, and intention of doing so. With such bad economic times persisting, one would think someone who actually helped provide the best fiscal program in the last quarter century would get some credit from those of you who put the economy at the top of important issues for 2012. Perhaps he’s disqualified though because he’s a conservative, err, I mean racist.

  44. 44
    Origuy says:

    When the New York Stock Exchange puts its headquarters at Amsterdam, Holland….

    What is he talking about? NYSE merged with Euronext in 2006, but the HQ of NYSE Euronext is still in NYC. Unless he’s referring to the buyout by Deutsche Börse, which hasn’t completed, yet. DB’s HQ is in Frankfurt, not Amsterdam.

  45. 45
    JordanRules says:

    @jrg: I just don’t understand why that was your first line of engagement with the post then because we agree the stuff needs to be called out and you lose no power in being called out as the target, in fact, as the one targeted you have more power to call it out. And in order to point out the ultimate causes folks like you who are the target are especially needed to do that and instead I heard (and I admit I may have read more into it) a retread of the old ‘why is it always about race, I’m sick of this shit and I didn’t enslave anybody argument’. Reading less into it, I still find it odd that the dogwhistle got no attention from you.

    As Vixen Strangely said, I think you’re pissed at the wrong people.

  46. 46
    Ash Can says:

    @jrg: It already happens again and again and again, because it’s effective. And the race of the people falling for it is an enormous clue to why it’s effective.

    It seems to me you’re getting cause and effect confused here. This kind of racist dog whistle is by definition a white phenomenon. None of these pols would be coasting on racist claptrap if their audiences weren’t receptive to that kind of message.

  47. 47
    Nellcote says:

    Maybe Newt is counting on the gooper voter supression agenda currently in vogue so that the only people left to vote will be white.

  48. 48
    Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason says:

    He follows the same destructive political model that destroyed the city of Detroit.

    And Perfessor Newt follows the same destructive political model that destroyed the city of New Orleans.

  49. 49
    fhtagn says:

    @jrg:

    As far as I can see, you are lamenting that human nature is imperfect, and saying that this is the ultimate cause, and therefore the proximate cause isn’t that important. Not that I can see why you got so upset about all this in the first place. At most, Dennis expressed himself somewhat inartfully, but even then his point was clear enough, and simply wasn’t racist.

  50. 50
    JordanRules says:

    @micah616: Good inquiry.

    I’m pissed that it is okay for Newt to say this and I know it’s only going to get worse. And yeah, they’re not really even dogwhistles anymore.

  51. 51
    Mike Kay (Chief of Staff) says:

    Nina Totenberg said on Inside Washington that “the press is kind to him because they don’t discuss [his baggage] in detail.”

    The point she didn’t take up is why.

  52. 52
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @jrg:

    Your whining is of no concern to me.

    As for Gingrich, he’s made his position clear: he embraces a flag of treason and open, avowed racism. Fuck him, and his followers. With an unlubed, diamond studded chainsaw with reverse looping action.

  53. 53
    jrg says:

    @micah616: I’m not saying we should minimize or ignore the proximate cause.

    Look, It’s not anti-German to say that the Nazis were a German political party. That’s a statement of fact, just like it’s a statement of fact to say that Newt (and the GOP) panders to white, American racists.

    I’m saying that it’s a mistake to dwell on the fact that the Nazis were German, because that leads people to believe “we’re better than that”, without requiring any sort of introspection or analysis of cause besides “German-ness” or “White-ness”.

  54. 54
    Ash Can says:

    @Caz: Fuckin’ economics and history, how do they work?

  55. 55
    eemom says:

    Between you and ABL, I’m getting really sick of this shit.

    Oooh, check it out: white male is REALLY SICK of people pointing out that his demographic are the dogs to which the dog-whistles are targeted.

    I mean, fuck the fact that dog whistles WORK: fuck the fact that every day of the two and a half years since the first AA President took office have revealed how very much alive and well in this country is the filth of racism; fuck the fact that the vermin who stoke its hideous fires are serious contenders for the presidency in 2012.

    What’s REALLY important is that we stop hurting the fee-fees of innocent white males with this “guilt by association” stuff. I mean it’s gotta stop NOW, cuz don’t you see? Until innocent white males stop getting their fee-fees hurt, NOTHING’s GONNA GET BETTER!

  56. 56
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Caz:

    Um, fuckwit, the budget wasn’t balanced in the mid 90’s. It was balanced in the late 90’s.

    After the shitstain Gingrich had been given the heave ho by his own party for nearly losing the House in the ’98 midterms.

  57. 57
    fhtagn says:

    @jrg:

    But actually Nazism grew out of very specifically German roots. You can find its origins in anti-Semitism that was going strong in Bismarck’s time, as well as the bitterness experienced by Germans in defeat. That isn’t the whole story, but you can’t separate Nazism and German history. We ought to dwell on the fact that Nazism emerged from Germany, precisely because Germany was among the most cultured, best educated, scientifically advanced nations in Europe. It matters immensely to see Nazism as a German phenomenon, and to see why it happened, and why it persists to this day.

  58. 58
    Mike Kay (Chief of Staff) says:

    @fhtagn: what’s next: “Newt’s collection of kiddie porn doesn’t necessary mean he’s a pedophile.”

  59. 59
    JordanRules says:

    @Mike Kay (Chief of Staff):

    The point she didn’t take up is why.

    Sounds about right. Geez they’re lazy fuckers.

  60. 60
    Yutsano says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: I wouldn’t bother Vil. He never bothers to stick around or defend his positions, he just flings poo. Then whines when we throw facts back at him by saying we call him mean names.

  61. 61
    micah616 says:

    @jrg: The problem with your analogy, of course, is that the (actual) Nazis have been gone for 60 years. Germany and the overwhelming majority of today’s Germans want nothing to do with the Nazi legacy. Meanwhile, white American racism has dictated the politics and direction of this country since before there were even states to unite and will continue to for the foreseeable future.

    And de-emphasizing the “white” part is a minimization, no matter which crappy analogy you want to use.

  62. 62
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    @jrg: Oh, poor thing. Is racism starting to be a drag for *you*? People of color (and allies), please STFU. You are making people uncomfortable. And they couldn’t possibly skip the post to minimize their discomfort. They need you to shut up.

    That is all.

  63. 63
    fhtagn says:

    @eemom:

    I think jrg is wrong in his arguments about this thread, but he does have a wider point. The solution to racism is not to extend its scope by adopting an anti-white racism in turn. It’s much too easy for people who are angry at white racism to overbalance into an anti-white racism of their own. I understand why the temptation is there, and I don’t defend southern racism or white racism at all, but embracing one’s own form of racism as a response will just make matters worse, and ABL’s infamous last thread with that most unfortunately captioned image entered into racist territory in a regrettable way.

  64. 64
    Mike Kay (Chief of Staff) says:

    I think Bachmann has a good chance at the nomination.

    She doesn’t have newt’s baggage, yet she race baits with the worst of them.

  65. 65
    jrg says:

    @eemom:

    Until innocent white males stop getting their fee-fees hurt, NOTHING’s GONNA GET BETTER!

    Jesus Christ… Read much? How about responding to my point instead of putting bullshit words in my mouth.

    @fhtagn: Yes, I recall reading points similar to the one you’re making in “The Arms of Krupp”… But strains of authoritarianism, nationalism, and racism exist in one form or another all over the globe. No culture is immune.

  66. 66
    fhtagn says:

    @Mike Kay (Chief of Staff):

    I thought that Romney might still win the tainted prize, but this week’s battering of him on healthcare makes him look destined for failure. I can’t see him surviving months of being hammered for his signature achievement that was. I am guessing Pawlenty will grasp the poisoned ring in the end.

  67. 67
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    @fhtagn: Or to put it this way, the GOP’s memes are anti-black, anti-woman, anti-gay, and anti-immigrant. But to say that they do this because it works on white men is *racist* man.

  68. 68
    fhtagn says:

    @jrg:

    True, but Nazism evolved in a specifically German context and with specifically German motivations. You can’t divorce it from its starting-point, any more than you can understand Chinese Communism outside its Chinese context.

  69. 69
    fhtagn says:

    @Barb (formerly Gex):

    Well, that’s a somewhat different thing from saying “white men are the problem”. I see where Dennis was coming from, but it wasn’t the most helpful way to phrase it. I don’t think it was racist, but I can see why jrg wasn’t happy with it being put that way.

  70. 70
    jrg says:

    @Barb (formerly Gex): I’m not going to waste my evening arguing with morons who refuse to even attempt to understand the point I’m making. I have better things to do. Good night.

  71. 71
    Yutsano says:

    @fhtagn:

    I am guessing Pawlenty will grasp the poisoned ring in the end.

    For the sake of peace in my life I hope to the FSM you are wrong. If T-Paw gets the nom she will asplode, then when she reincorporates she will go on a months-long tirade. My only hope is to focus her energy on his humiliating defeat.

    BTW is anyone else smelling brokered convention? I sure am.

  72. 72
    RareSanity says:

    @jrg:

    I’m just saying that blanket statements like “What might help is catering to White anxiety and fear over a changing world—this is especially true for white males.” don’t help… That’s a blanket, racist statement.

    I don’t think racist means what you think it means…

    “[T]his is especially true for white males”, simply means that of all of the demographics in this great melting pot of ours, white males will be disproportionately open to Newt’s suggestions.

    That’s all, and it’s true. There is not other demographic in this country that will be as susceptible. If you want to use additional adjectives to make yourself feel better, be my guest. But the fact remains, there will be white males, that aren’t “rednecks and racists”, that will find some “comfort” in what Newt is selling.

    Seems to me that you are being either naive or presumptuous, to think that it’ll only be pickup driving rednecks, that will find Newt’s words positive.

  73. 73
    Jewish Steel says:

    @jrg:

    In other words, if you think that “white males” are the problem, guess what… You’re the problem.

    Ah ha, yes, but, now follow me here, if white males are the problem then it is you who have, or, has the problem. Or rather a problem. A white male problem.

    Clear?

  74. 74
    fhtagn says:

    @Yutsano:

    I think T-Paw is probably just compromised and officially crazy enough for the GOP to grudgingly congeal around, but still retains just enough rags of respectability for the MSM not to instantly blow him out of the water. What might be intriguing is to see who he takes as VP. I could see Gollum Daniels slithering forward for his moment of glory.

  75. 75
    JordanRules says:

    @fhtagn: No doubt the oppressed have become the oppressor throughout history but I don’t think we have any sustained and large enough offering of such from black folks in America to take that seriously at this juncture. The power differential is still so wide as to almost make it laughable.

    And I do say that without wanting to minimize the feelings of folks that really took issue with the pic and caption in that thread…yet not ignore the fact that the power components of race still mean subjective anti-white and black racism usually play out very differently in the real world.

  76. 76
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    @fhtagn: Well if DG had said that white men were X instead of Newt is targeting white men with X, then he’d have a point.

    The phrase “There may even be enough of them” seems to be enough admission in post that it is some, not all white men.

  77. 77
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @fhtagn:

    I might point out that one of the problems for modern fascists is that the German version of fascism badly damaged the brand. Mussolini wasn’t heavily into antisemitism, and the Italians only went along with the Nazis because, well, they had to, the Nazis insisted, and the Nazis were the senior partner in the Axis. Plus, the Italians owed them, for bailing Mussolini out of his idiotic attack on Greece from Albania in ’41.

    Nazism is in many ways a distinct and unique form of fascism with racist features that were tailored to aspects of the German culture. Antisemitism has a long history in Germany, and there are specific cultural touchstones that made it particularly virulent in the German fascist movement.

  78. 78
    Ripley says:

    Perhaps he’s disqualified though because he’s a conservative, err, I mean racist.

    Yes, exactly.

  79. 79
    Jamie says:

    Why are they still calling him Rep. Gingrich? He hasn’t held that job for ~13 years

  80. 80
    Fred says:

    @jrg: As a white male around Obama’s age I do NOT resent that remark. But it is also quite true. The vast majority of all this bullshit getting in the way of Obama getting stuff done is the result of white males over 50 scared of non-old white male boogeymen around every corner and under their bed threatening to take away their political voice…errum I mean FREEDOM!.

  81. 81
    Jamie says:

    Do they still call John Edwards Senator Edwards?

  82. 82
    fhtagn says:

    @JordanRules:

    I am not talking about the black community going racist. I am often amazed at their restraint, frankly. That said, there is a certain type of anti-white rhetoric that sometimes crosses the line into racism among certain “liberal” groups of every race. It’s deeply regrettable, but it exists. I think when you put up an image of a white man, and proceed to attribute all manner of hateful thoughts to him, you are coming perilously close to the way in which the GOP have stereotyped black men, or Hispanics. I don’t think this is something liberals should want to be in the business of defending or advocating, and I don’t see that it benefits anyone in the long term.

  83. 83
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    @jrg: You found “racism” where there is none. When DG says “there may be enough” to get Newt the nomination, he’s clearly acknowledging that it is not all white men.

    But it seems like you were ready to just call him out without looking for any moderating terms. He’s saying Newt is using dogwhistles, targeted at white men, and hoping there are enough of them to get the nomination. Where is the blanket condemnation of white men in that?

  84. 84
    fhtagn says:

    @Barb (formerly Gex):

    I think we basically agree that Dennis wasn’t saying anything racist. I don’t think he expressed himself very artfully, and jrg was upset by that, but equally, I think jrg read something more into it than he needed to. Either way, defeating the protean evil of the GOP seems more important than going around this mulberry bush, so to speak.

  85. 85
    JordanRules says:

    @fhtagn: Agreed and it’s easier to stop before it becomes too pervasive and, I hope, because we’re liberals.

  86. 86
    Fred says:

    @jrg: As a fellow white male I got news for you. White males ARE the problem. Just not me and I am assuming not you. It’s just that white males over 50 are pretty much the only demographic the Rethugs have NOT chased away with their 3 ring circus. That’s just a fact. A point that seems lost on you.

  87. 87
    RadioOne says:

    I think the main reason why the GOP base is so angry about the current crop of Republican candidates is because they want and expect an Obama-like 2008 candidate to emerge this year, but on their side. They want a media star who blows the cable news pundits minds, like candidate Obama did in the 2008 election.

  88. 88
    furioso ateo says:

    @Jamie: It’s generally accepted practice that someone retains the title of their highest elected office for the rest of their days. Yes, it’s still Senator Edwards just as it is still Governor Huckabee.

  89. 89
    JordanRules says:

    @Fred: The ability to see who the target is, even if you’re one of them, without succumbing to a knee-jerk ‘well NOT me and stop saying it’s me’ is important. That reaction let Newt off the hook so he goes on to the rest of the targets who are ready to take the bait instead of fighting off demands from targets who know what he’s doing because frankly they’ll have more clout in addressing it with him then I ever will.

  90. 90
    handy says:

    @Jamie:

    Did everybody wag their finger at Newt when he divorced his cancer-striken wife?

  91. 91
    Nick says:

    Good grief, read the disclaimer! Food stamps, poll taxes, and Detroit are racial dogwhistles to appeal to RACIST older white male Southern Republicans.

    DISCLAIMER: If you are non-racist… you could be a 98-year old white male from Macon, Georgia and the dogwhistles would not appeal to you.

  92. 92
    Keith says:

    Credit where credit is due: Newt didn’t try to claim what he said isn’t racist because he is/was friends with one or more black people.

  93. 93
    Yutsano says:

    @Keith: Well at least he elected to not descend into the theater of the absurd. Too far, anyway.

  94. 94

    @eemom:

    you don’t get to be the party of the circular firing squad and have dog-whistles too.

    i mean i get it, the white male thing, is something of a dog whistle meant to mean republicans, while attempting to pretend not everything about politics, or maintaining the higher ground that there are things more important to us than politics, so we can decry the politicization of certain things,without sounding nakedly political ourselves.

  95. 95
    Mark S. says:

    @Keith:

    Newt knows that no one would believe him if he claimed he had any friends.

  96. 96
    fhtagn says:

    @Mark S.:

    Even Newt’s imaginary friend doesn’t like him much.

  97. 97
    JordanRules says:

    @Yutsano: Plenty of time, plenty of time…

    Newt has been known to kinda lose focus and come across as frazzled and POTUS seems to amplify that into a Trump roast.

  98. 98
    dww44 says:

    @fhtagn:

    Gingrich is pandering to older white voters and he’s playing them the same old racist mood music,which has gained some purchase because of the ongoing demographic changes in America. Most of the voters he’s targeting are white and male. Them’s the facts.

    @Fred:

    It’s just that white males over 50 are pretty much the only demographic the Rethugs have NOT chased away with their 3 ring circus. That’s just a fact.

    As a resident of the city where Gingrich made his “food stamp” remark a coupla days ago, my unscientific observation about the gender make-up of the present-day GOP is that there are as many white women as there are white men and all of them are NOT past the age of 50.

    Gingrich was here only because the State GOP convention was in session here on Friday and Saturday. Interestingly, the two candidates vying for chair of the State party were both white women. The newly elected governor (male) backed a tea party candidate from the western Atlanta suburbs (she was also endorsed by Sharon Aingle) against the two term incumbent female chair. When the Governor stood up to speak to the attendees he was greeted with not insignificant booing by the supporters of the incumbent female.

    When it comes to race identity politics, don’t shortchange the females. My female conservative relatives are MORE prejudiced than the male ones. They are certainly more emotionally invested in them. Both groups together constitute the overwhelming majority of my relatives.

  99. 99
    ruemara says:

    @fhtagn:

    This is antiwhite rhetoric?!

    Wow. How are we ever to get anything done when you can’t call statements meant to cater to a white male patriarchal demographic as meant to cater to a white male demographic? And this bruises you to step past the actual point of the post but to argue over the painful history of white males being tarred and feather with accusations of racism because some white males were avowedly racist? Wrong weekend to stop huffing glue. Again.

  100. 100
    JordanRules says:

    @dww44: I think the focus on males speaks to how the GOP is anti-woman as well and how they intrinsically deal with them on a level that infers they have no power.

    But yes, there are plenty of XX’s and XY’s that the Southern Strategy caters to.

  101. 101
    fhtagn says:

    @ruemara:

    You are attacking the wrong person. I have said, repeatedly, that what Dennis said was not anti-white. As for the ABL post, yes, in my opinion the image with it was racist, just as it would be racist to post an image of a black man or Hispanic man and attribute hateful thoughts to him as a black or Hispanic man. I wish you a pleasant evening.

  102. 102
    Ruckus says:

    @jrg:
    As a white male I don’t like being associated with racists either.
    So what? Many of our fellow white males are racists. So are many other people in this world. That doesn’t make the racist, white males in this country any less racist. And the demographic for the conservatives is heavily weighted towards old, white males. Without them the conservative, racist bullshit this country deals with would be, if not insignificant, much lessened.
    So until the old, white, male conservatives die off, I’ll put up with being lumped in with them, based on the color of my skin because it causes me no real or lasting harm. If it can help bring the problems that conservatives bring to the table, especially the racist problems, out into the open so that we can grow as a country and as humans, I’m all for it.

  103. 103
    JordanRules says:

    @Ruckus: Word.

  104. 104
    Chris says:

    He’s going to make America like Texas, by setting it all on fire and then begging for outside help.

  105. 105
    Mike Kay (Chief of Staff) says:

    Roman Polanski named new head of the IMF

  106. 106
    JordanRules says:

    @Chris: Yeah, I’d like to know more about his revisionist history of Deadtroit and Texatopia.

  107. 107

    @Mike Kay (Chief of Staff):

    does this mean students at roman polanski jr. high will get an assembly in the gym, or do they get the whole day off?

  108. 108
    eemom says:

    my opinion is that anybody who thinks that demonizing white men is a “problem” that anybody should give a shit about is full of shit. At best.

    YMMV.

  109. 109
    Ruckus says:

    @JordanRules:
    The power differential is still so wide as to almost make it laughable.

    The only way to make the case here is that racism is all about hurt feelings. And of course that is the very most insignificant part of racism, if it can be counted at all. This country has a race problem. It is better than when I was a child, but it has a long way to go. I am an old white male, and even though I don’t feel my parents were racist, they sure were products of their times. I feel that I look at race with a much better attitude than my parents but I too am a product of my times. But many whites in this country still live in the past. And that past was filled with white racists. These people are a product of their time as well.
    The point for me is that we have a long way still to go and if pointing out that the vast majority of racists in this country are white and that the conservatives are targeting them with racist dog whistles helps bring that out into the open, my feelings are of no consequence.

  110. 110
    Console says:

    I can understand getting upset at the idea that white anxiety is something that can translate into votes, if said translation were some novel idea. But it isn’t so who cares.
    Hell, I even understand the political implications here. Dennis G manages to paint anyone that agrees with Newt as a racist. The problem is that racist people don’t think they’re racist so they get hurt fee-fees when it’s implied that they are. But who cares if people hear something they don’t want to hear if it’s true.

    However I don’t even remotely understand what JRG is bitching about. If the base eats the redmeat, why the fuck is Dennis the bad guy from pointing out who the base is and why the keep eating it?

  111. 111
    Ruckus says:

    @Console:
    It’s OK jrg doesn’t understand what he is bitching about either. That’s what allows him to bitch about it.

  112. 112
    Mike Kay (Chief of Staff) says:

    by the way, I’m a white guy, and some of my best friends have been white. And yes, a significant percentage of my brethren have less than inclusive attitudes.

    Now they don’t think there should be separate drinking fountains, but nevertheless you hear white collar professionals wringing their hands about the mexicans taking all the jobs, yet there isn’t one brown face in the entire building.

  113. 113
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @jrg: Oh, for fuck’s sake, who is Newt targeting? Black women? Hispanic transexuals? No, he is targeting white men who are having trouble dealing with the the fact that the world is changing. As an almost translucent person, I am not taking offense because I know Dennis G isn’t talking about me, but, at the same, I do know that a lot of people with my pigmentation and gender are not adjusting particularly well to changing demographics. Jesus, man up and deal with it.

  114. 114
    DPirate says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Yeah, yeah, they get a pass because it’s “You people” in reference to whites instead of blacks.

  115. 115
    Allan says:

    Excellent work, jrg. You made the thread about you when you derailed it at comment #2, ensuring that as little time as possible was spent on the actual topic.

    I especially enjoyed the spin about how Dennis’ bad writing failed to properly shield your fee fees from the suggestion that you might harbor racist thoughts or motives, and bringing in BJ’s African-American female team member for further opprobrium was a bold, though not unexpected, move.

    Kudos to fhtagn for his supporting work.

  116. 116

    Jeebus, people.

    Talk about getting hung up on words.

    Newt is appealing to BIGOTS. There. Now that you’re freed of the chains of skin color, you can actually talk about something substantive.

    You’re welcome.

  117. 117
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @DPirate: No, they get a pass because it is a factual statement.

  118. 118
    kay says:

    Detroit, of course.

    Why don’t Newt Gingrich and media focus their concern on white rural poverty? White rural public schools? White rural teenage parents? White rural substance abuse “epidemic”? There’s a LOT of problems there, and that’s where the conservative base lives, and where conservatives represent people, at both the local level and the national level. I think conservatives should speak to that.
    It’s interesting how media and Newt Gingrich continue to pretend these places don’t exist, and how they don’t offer any wonderful conservative “solutions” to the HUGE problems in their own districts and states, among poor and working class white people.
    Conservatives have been running impoverished white rural areas for 60 years, and the people in these areas are losing ground on every measure. Why don’t they start at home, and fix all the problems there, instead of worrying about Detroit?
    We need a national discussion on why white rural people are still poor, and getting poorer, under conservative governance, because that’s fact. Newt Gingrich could lead it.

  119. 119
    aimai says:

    People get their feelings hurt when it turns out they belong to a group that can be easily parodied, assaulted, or manipulated. Its painful to grasp that someone, maybe many people, regard your group (with which you identify) as being bad or at least stupid enough to fall for some fairly obvious political tricks.

    But the people to be angry with are those who are doing the manipulating, or those in your group who are making the sterotypes live and breath, not with the people calling this shit out.

    I’m white and its quite embarrassing for me, to the extent that I see myself as representative of my entire race, that Newt Gingerich and Sarah Palin think that I’m easily manipulated, easily fooled, extremely racist, and extremely stupid and ill informed. But since I don’t think of myself as representative of their actual target market and since I’m not any of those things I really never worry that other people–say, DougJ or Barack Obama–think that I’m the problem.

    To Jrg I’ll say this, directly: if you don’t want to be seen as part of the problem, be part of the solution. Its quite easy. Don’t align yourself with Newt’s target racists. Don’t worry about the word “white” or some picture somewhere of some white guy with parody captions. Just keep fighting to isolate Newt and his merry band of followers. Don’t waste time telling *us* that you think White people are better than being suckered by Newt. Attack Newt and his followers directly and write him a letter and ABC etc… letters saying “I reject Newt and all his lies personally, as a white guy of a certain age. I reject the notion that there are two countries: a good white country and a bad black country.” Oddly enough that’s precisely what Obama said during his 2004 convention speech. It was aspirational at the time and it will remain aspirational but we are only as good as what we aspire to be.

    aimai

  120. 120
    kay says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I sort of disagree. He’s targeting white women, too. There’s an electoral advantage for liberals and Democrats among white women, but it can (and does) disappear periodically.
    We could have a whole discussion on why white women respond to dog whistles, or (on another topic) why women (in general) respond to anti-abortion messages, but we often don’t, and I don’t know why. I’m fine with talking about it, because I think it’s fact.

  121. 121
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @kay: Yeah, let’s call it white people who can’t deal with a changing world. Still, Newt is reaching out to these people, not with a message of hope or to encourage them to embrace and become a part of the the changing world, but rather with a message that appeals to baser instincts and he asks them only to hold onto, cherish, and vote their perceived grievances. He panders to the worst in human nature, and I despise him for it. That is why it is annoying to have someone respond to Dennis G calling Newt out for this by airing a petty grievance about my fellow white people’s feelings.

    N.B. I am tired and perhaps cranky after getting up stupidly early to launch my wife on her trip to the Dominican Republic.

  122. 122
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    @jrg: Welcome to my world, motherfucker, where every black professional is automatically considered incompetent and the biggest fucking ninnehammer in the fucking company is perfectly capable as long as he shows primarily northern European genes.

    You don’t fucking like it? Talk to some of your white male friends, the same way they’re always trying to get guys like me to “talk to your black brothers about crime and drugs and out-of-wedlock-births and how black culture is poisonous and…”

    Welcome to my world, motherfucker.

  123. 123
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ivan Ivanovich Renko: … and I assumed you were Russian. I suppose there is a very bad joke stolen from the cowboy bar scene in 48 Hours in there.

  124. 124
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Naah, just a dangerous combination of Tom Clancy novels and Rocky and Bullwinkle episodes…

  125. 125
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ivan Ivanovich Renko: Explosive mix.

  126. 126
    kay says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Yeah, let’s call it white people who can’t deal with a changing world.

    I feel as if it’s important as a practical matter because in my experience conservative women do all the grunt work for people like Newt Gingrich. The local Tea party “organizer” is female, and she’s probably mid-thirties. I’m not trying to be “fair”, I’m trying to be accurate, and the fact is, it’s not all white men.

  127. 127
    Svensker says:

    @Yutsano:

    He’s gotta be a spoof. It’s just not possible to be that dumb and predictable and be a real person.

  128. 128
    shortstop says:

    @kay: It is important as a practical matter–over the past few years (something happened and I can’t quite put my finger on what; somebody was elected to some high office), it seems that white female racism has swelled and/or jelled and, as you say, made the white female vote far less solid than it was for Dems. I believe Tea Party stats are still heavily male, but not as much as we like to think, and as you note, the grassrooting is mostly done by the XXs. No one ever discusses this changing local angle, so quick are we to note (correctly) that the GOP power structure, at least at the top, is so thoroughly male.

    I don’t mind having conversations every day about how uncomfortable many white males are with demographic change–they quite simply are–but we have meat for about 100 unheld discussions on why so many white women are currently choosing race over gender and establishing themselves as players in a party that openly despises them.

  129. 129
    kay says:

    @shortstop:

    it seems that white female racism has swelled and/or jelled and, as you say, made the white female vote far less solid than it was for Dems.

    I don’t like to get so broad, and say it’s all racial dog whistles, because I don’t know. That’s IN there, but it’s not all of it.
    I do think there’s something unspoken behind how pundits always portray swings in white women voters (D to R) as “security” related. I know we’re all supposed to think “national security” but “security” means a lot of different things, ie, not just physical safety.
    Broadly, “security” means “response to fear”, right? So, maybe physical safety but also economic security or “fear of being in a minority”, I would think.

  130. 130
    Dennis G. says:

    @fhtagn: Adopting “Anti-White racism”?

    What the hell is that? That’s playing the white victim card and that is the standard playbook. It may be uncomfortable for whites to think about, own and comes to terms with their privileges and their fears. And it will even be hard to come to terms with how White Supremacist activity has been and is a key part of the White American experience. It is uncomfortable to have this pointed out, but it is not and never will be “Anti-White racism”. Even when it is done–as ABL did–dripping with sarcasm, it is still weak tea to whine about “Anti-White racism” as a subject deflector.

    This is a white problem. It is especially a white male problem. And until we own it and then deal with it, this problem will continue to fuck up this world.

    Cheers

  131. 131
    rikryah says:

    Newt is just like Foghorn Leghorn – he’s nothing but a CAC in a suit.

    plain and simple.

    Yes, Newt is a mofoing RACIST to his core.

    White folks tiptoe around it; as a Black person, I shall not.

    Yes, his ass is a racist.

  132. 132
    KatinPhilly says:

    kay – you should write a post on this.

  133. 133

    As a white male, I’m not sure if my fee-fees will ever recover from that one innocuous sentence in this post. DG’s pointing out a simple demographic fact shook me to my very core. I now understand what it was like for those little children as they walked into that Little Rock schoolhouse for the first time.

  134. 134
    Slowbama says:

    Can we please stop saying fee-fees all the time?

    THX in advance

  135. 135
    Tone in DC says:

    @jrg:
    So stop reading it.

    Try foxnews.com

  136. 136
    geg6 says:

    @Dennis G.:

    I love you, dengre. Just love you.

  137. 137
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    @fhtagn: In which case, maybe having a white guy come in and tell non-white guys that this thread is reverse-racist isn’t particularly helpful. That’s what the GOP does. Any criticism of racist tactics becomes reverse racism.

  138. 138
    xian says:

    Newt is going after all those Haley Barbour voters.

  139. 139
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    @aimai: JRG chose to take this thread and in turn just call all of us a bunch of racists. That’s helpful, right? We all need to get right on the protect the fee-fees of white guys who have trouble coping with their demographics’ history. To the point where it is more important to protect the fee-fees of this white male over dealing with the racist bullshit being spewed far and wide by a presidential candidate.

  140. 140
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    @kay: True. But the GOP doesn’t win the female demo. There’s only one demo they win. And it is verboten to say which demo that is because that would be racist. And apparently sexist too.

  141. 141
    grandpajohn says:

    @jrg: As one who has tried a couple of times here tried to argue that it is better to try and win friends by using Dean’s 50 states strategy rather than castigating and demeaning those whose votes we are trying to win , I can say you just made the correct decision, once the wagons are circled, any attempt to make a reasoned argument to explain your point will be lost in the blare of the trumpets of rightousness.

  142. 142
    shortstop says:

    @Barb (formerly Gex): In this past election, the GOP did win the female demo–49-48%, a large drop from the 55% we had in 2006. Half of white, unmarried women voted Republican in November. That blows my mind.

    I have no problem with continually pointing out how well racist dogwhistles work among white males–it’s something we need to confront without regard to attempts at derailment and false equivalences–but an increasing number of white women appear to be motivated by racism as well. Enough that we should be talking about them, too, while not minimizing discussion of the white patriarchy.

  143. 143
    grandpajohn says:

    @eemom: well yes when one is trying to convince members of a certain group that maybe they should vote for their candidate then one should be careful about which members of that group they chose to villify rather than throwing out blanket accusations. It does seem that as a party we have forgotten about the success of Dean’s 50 state strategy

  144. 144
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    By the way– y’all shouldn’t dis “rednecks” the way some do. Just because a man is a “redneck” does NOT mean he’s also a white-supremacist asshole.

    Hell, some of my best friends are rednecks!

    (I’ll admit there’s a fairly high correlation, but I really do know some
    self-described “rednecks” who are good men and true that I consider friends.)

    I also know some upscale white men who are every bit as white supremacist as the former Representative Grinch.

    (yeah, I said it– that fat-faced fucker also longs for the days when “the nigras knew their place.”)

    edit: because some of my best friends are rednecks!

  145. 145
    Josie says:

    @kay: You have put your finger on it. Many were ok with voting Democratic until Obama’s win in the primary and in the election made the diversity in our population painfully obvious to them. Hillary (and I actually have come to respect her) gave them permission to vote their racist feelings in the primary and then Sarah picked up the thread in the election. It didn’t work either time, and that was new and scary to them. I’m not sure we’ll ever get them back.

  146. 146
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @grandpajohn: Dennis G wasn’t vilifying anyone. If we are not aware of certain facts, for example, white people (especially older males) are more receptive as a group to a particular message than other demographic groups, we cannot find ways change those facts to something else.

  147. 147
    Feudalism Now! says:

    The point of saying ‘white males’ is that those same white males do not think of themselves as racist. The dog whistles work, but they see themselves as post racial affronted white folk. I am white and I find all sorts of ways my privilege shows up every day. I will until the day I die because our society rewards white Christian males in a myriad of stupid ways. There is cover provided in ‘it’s not all white males, I’m not like those hillbilly southern white trash’, except the racism is not overt but it’s still there. Suck it up, buttercup, if you are white you have a problem with race, you just don’t have to notice. That is the true privilege, the option not to worry about your race, gender, sexuality or religion.

  148. 148
    Jay C says:

    @fhtagn:

    I presume their next trick is to explain that setting fire to orphanages doesn’t make you a bad person, much less an arsonist.

    No, but their next trick will probably be to seize on the possibility that the fire was actually started next door, and point out, in Very Serious tones, of course; how partisan, biased and irresponsible it is to assume any intention of arson, or intention of harm to any orphans, and tut-tut about the Awful Shame of liberals trying to exploit the plight of burned and homeless orphans for political gain. And ignoring the economic benefits that the mall which will be built on the site of the destroyed orphanage will bring.

  149. 149
    dww44 says:

    @kay: dww44

    A point I tried to make at about 2:30 this a.m in this thread. Looking around me in this totally red state, the women are indeed very much are part of the GOP infrastructure. They just don’t get elected to high public office as often. But there is no way the GOP as currently constituted is all about past 50 white men. The women here are just as enamored of dog-whistle politics as men are.

    Seriously, I blame the whole problem in these parts on the move to private schools from public ones 40 years ago. Too often it was the women who made the decisions about where their kids went to school, no matter that a coupla of these secondary schools cost as much as the public university and many could ill afford them. We now are making our way into the 3rd generation of students who’ve not gone to school with people of a different race. Racism isn’t as blatant as 40 years ago, but it is still very much present and it isn’t dying out with the old folks like me.

    We won’t have an inclusive society if our public schools aren’t reengineered and reenergized. Too easy in these parts for people to demonize our public schools. Among all the threats posed by the retrogressive Republican party, this is potentially the most damaging. That, and the rewriting of our history books.

  150. 150
    grandpajohn says:

    @kay: True, Here in the south there are just as many women teabaggers as men. What is not being addressed however isl how do we quell their fears of a changing world, how do we get them to see the other side? how do we get them to change their minds and vote for our candidates? I don’t think that villification and ridicule of entire groups is the way to convince them that we are right and they are wrong

  151. 151
    kay says:

    @dww44:

    A point I tried to make at about 2:30 this a.m in this thread. Looking around me in this totally red state, the women are indeed very much are part of the GOP infrastructure. They just don’t get elected to high public office as often. But there is no way the GOP as currently constituted is all about past 50 white men. The women here are just as enamored of dog-whistle politics as men are.

    I saw your comment, and I agree with you, but I was too lazy to find it again.
    Our Dem county chair in ’08 had, um, issues with race, so it’s (sadly) not even limited to conservatives. let alone limiting it to gender. He came around, but it was not great or inspiring or anything. It was reluctant and grudging..
    I DO get that the predominate audience is white males, though. I think that’s true. I just want to make it more inclusive, and I think women are in this :)

  152. 152
    grandpajohn says:

    You should read more carefully,I never said he did, but that there are some here who do for groups that don’t think their way, and I also know that the wagons have been circled so There is no point of me continuing on either.

  153. 153
    shortstop says:

    @grandpajohn:

    You should read more carefully,I never said he did

    Um, okay, but when you mutter darkly about your supposed “vilification” in a thread in which someone has already laughably accused the blogger of being too mean to white dudes, people are naturally going to assume that you, too, mean the blogger. So instead of clearing up the point of whom you’re talking about, you double down with a weaselly “there are some here who do” and storm out.

    If you won’t stand your ground and make your point clearly, don’t get mad at people for not getting it.

  154. 154
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @grandpajohn: I ted to think that groups who have been disadvantaged have aright to be pissed off and air their grievances. Look, I think I am a reasonably enlightened guy on racial and gender issues, but damn, if I haven’t lived a life that has been soaked in a metric shit ton of privilege. Because I look, dress, speak, and act in certain ways, I give off signals that I might be someone important (I am not). These signals of upper-middle/upper class white maleness have let me do things in front of cops that would get many other people arrested. I don’t get followed when I am in a nice store, except by the lady who wants to start a fitting room for me. i didn’t do anything to earn this, and the fact that I get it and others don’t is, frankly, wrong. These privileges will probably outlast my life and the lives of my children, when I have them. They won’t last much longer than that though, and that is a good thing. We lily white folk have two options; adjust to the new world or rage against it and be left behind.

  155. 155
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: FYWP. I should have permission to edit my own comments. This is an example of the Man keeping a white man down.

  156. 156
    Ash Can says:

    Oh for fuck’s sake. Singling out white males as the generic group most likely to be receptive to a racist message, or posting a graphic caricaturing a white guy as a fat racist cracker, isn’t an offense. It’s pushback. Historical and social context is everything.

  157. 157
    fhtagn says:

    @Dennis G.:

    Dennis, it is extremely naive to think that only white people can be racist, which is where your comment is heading. Some of the nastiest racism I’ve seen was in material from China (magazine articles and so forth, for mainstream consumption) that discussed black people as if they were sexual animals responsible for AIDS. I’ve heard black people discussing Hispanics in terms that would delight the GOP. Racism is not just a white problem, but part of a national problem here in the USA. Did white people get the ball rolling? Yes. Are they responsible for a majority of the hateful comments we see daily? Yes. Are they the only racists. No. Is the solution to the problem to make it all about white people? No. Is it constructive for the left to lurch into anti-white racism, as we do sometimes? No. Producing a racist image, as ABL did, does nothing to solve racism, it simply adds to the fire. Nor is it impressive when you dismiss people who want an honest discussion about racism as simply peddling a “standard playbook”. I will say this: I showed my co-workers – a group of roughly 20 people around 55% white – the image ABL created, and 90% of them, black and Asian people included, thought it was racist and most likely created by the GOP to smear Democrats as “the real racists”. No-one thought it was remotely funny or sarcastic. There is a world beyond this little corner of the internet and we need to recognize that fact. Bomb-throwing and reverse-racism may seem fun and legitimate so long as it is done by one of “our side”, but that doesn’t make it a helpful contribution to a tormented and profoundly emotionally complex debate for all sides.

  158. 158
    Feudalism Now! says:

    Acknowledging that white males are the targets of racist dog whistles is not Caucasian racism, it is fact. You don’t sound dog whistles for the AA vote. And the dog whistle is even better because there is the delusion that ‘you are not racist but that Gingrich fellow has a point’ and if you someone dares accuse you of responding to dog whistles you can claim the oppression of being linked to honest racists out there. Win-win!

  159. 159
    Brachiator says:

    What might help is catering to White anxiety and fear over a changing world—this is especially true for white males. Racism has a role to play in this, but one can make blatant appeals to this fear without being personally racist.

    No, you can’t. This is a distinction without a difference.

    @fhtagn:

    Dennis, it is extremely naive to think that only white people can be racist, which is where your comment is heading.

    Yawn. As much as I disagree with Dennis G on many points, this is not what he is saying. Nor is “who can be a racist” anything more than a side issue.

    The whole point of the racial anxiety felt by some (not all) conservatives, especially Tea Party People, is reflected in their yearning for a “good old days” when legally codified white racism was buttressed by socially sanctioned white racism.

    That your feelings were hurt by some dumbass image is really, absolutely trivial, and trivializes what real racism is all about.

    And by the way, it is by no means “all about” white people. It’s about the stupid and fearful vs the not so stupid and hopeful. Always has been, always will be.

  160. 160
    Dennis G. says:

    @fhtagn:
    In nothing that I have ever written have I stated or implied that “only white people” can be racist. This is your projection. It is a great deflection to avoid dealing with any issues I raise. Yours is a complete strawman of an argument and hardly worth responding to.

    What I have said–many times–is that white people in America have a responsibility to honestly talk and think about race. And that a big part of that responsibility is to be aware of the unearned privilege you enjoy by virtue of being white. I also said in this post (and quite a few others) that because many white folks have anxiety over a changing world they are receptive to dog whistles of racism and appeals to white supremacy. That is what the Confederacy and Tea Party movement are all about. When folks like Newt say American Exceptionalism they really mean White Exceptionalism.

    Your invented outrage that I somehow said that only white males can be racist can only be the result of poor reading skills, projection, trolling or some combination of the three.

    Have fun with that.

  161. 161
    fhtagn says:

    @Dennis G.:

    You know, it would be a lot more mature if you actually constructed an argument, rather than simply throwing tired insults at anyone who disagrees with you. I realize that you and the other front-pagers would rather defend a racist post than admit that ABL got it wrong, but in so doing you are willingly participating in racism. How do you expect to have an honest discussion like this? All you are doing is defending a politically correct rationalization of the fashionable “let’s bash white blue-collar southerners” attitude that allows Democrats to present themselves as somehow uniquely virtuous, while constructing an easy hate-group to target. This is no way to advance the national discussion. All you are doing is simply thinking like a tribal Republican, someone who doesn’t care what the merits of his argument may be, but simply repeats it loudly and in an abusive and bullying tone of voice. If you want to keep making Balloon-Juice a stopping place for people who just want to bash white blue-collar men, go ahead. It’s your problem, not theirs.

  162. 162
    Mnemosyne says:

    @fhtagn:

    Some of the nastiest racism I’ve seen was in material from China (magazine articles and so forth, for mainstream consumption) that discussed black people as if they were sexual animals responsible for AIDS.

    Sorry, what does the racism of people in China have to do with people in the United States? I mean, other than the fact that our (predominantly white) culture has exported those anti-black attitudes to them.

    I’ve heard black people discussing Hispanics in terms that would delight the GOP.

    Which, of course, has absolutely nothing to do with the way the right wing has been demonizing illegal immigrants as the source of all of our problems for the past couple of decades. Nope, it’s something they came up with all by themselves that just happens to dovetail perfectly with Republican memes about Latinos that are constantly repeated in the media.

    Racism is not just a white problem, but part of a national problem here in the USA.

    It’s not “just” a white problem, but it’s MOSTLY a white problem, because white people are still the cultural gatekeepers. Black-on-Latino racism isn’t very influential in the wider culture, but it’s been influenced by the wider (white) culture.

    Yes, it’s true, no one is immune from racism no matter what their ethnic background is. But pretending that racism in the United States is not a mostly white problem is ridiculous.

  163. 163
    Brachiator says:

    @fhtagn:

    All you are doing is defending a politically correct rationalization of the fashionable “let’s bash white blue-collar southerners” attitude.

    Can you say hoist on your on petard?

    You back yourself into a corner twice over. By you own words, you admit that what is mocked here is an attitude, not any attack on white blue-collar southerners as human beings. Unless, of course, you want to assert that attitudes and beliefs are somehow based on ethnicity.

    And what, exactly is a white blue collar southerner anyway?

    But keep barking up that wrong tree. It seems very important to you.

  164. 164
    les says:

    Some of the nastiest racism I’ve seen was in material from China (magazine articles and so forth, for mainstream consumption) that discussed black people as if they were sexual animals responsible for AIDS….Racism is not just a white problem, but part of a national problem here in the USA.

    I’m not sure I get the relevance of this exposition, to a post about what audience the Newtster may be appealing to. Unless you’re just trying to miss the point?

  165. 165
    Lisa says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Stands up and cheers.

  166. 166
    rf80412 says:

    @TooManyJens: It’s not an incorrect assumption: more rights for someone means fewer rights for someone else. The rising tide cannot lift all boats because there’s only so much water – the tide can only rise in one place if it’s falling someplace else – but the vast majority of people could care less if the rich don’t have enough water to sail their superyachts.

    The problem is the rights that conservatives are trying to defend: i.e. the right of the rich to do as they please and stick the rest of us with the bill, all while they demand that we love them for it. The conservatives are lying like rugs about it though. If they were telling the truth about what they’re for, they’d be politically irrelevant or we’d be a fascist dictatorship. If they were trying to promote the rights of ordinary Americans regardless of color or creed, then white men wouldn’t be complaining either.

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