Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Geraldine Ferraro

I was ready to leave the Clinton campaign alone...

Am I astonished at Ferraro's recent comments? No, I've noted previously that any large system will have things run off the tracks, being composed of humans is inherently a problem and having lots of them involved guarantees some gaffe or the other. The place such a thing leaves you is how you deal with the fact that it has happened. It was pretty darn stupid to call Obama lucky to be a black man in regard to this campaign. There is no up-side to this comment, no place to go with it that is helpful to the campaign. Compounding the damage later by stating that the reaction to the statement is essentially reverse racism doesn't improve things. This is right there with calling Hillary a monster and making it ok. It is stupid.

Or, considering the Clinton campaign response - Obama is making an issue of race, maybe it is a calculated stupidity. Obama as the affirmative action candidate might play in PA. There is a delegate lead that is in all probability unassailable, only a blow out in PA and maybe IN can be used to persuade Supers to re-think delegate counts. Short of a complete implosion of the Obama campaign there is no catching him. This means whatever complete nastiness is required should be used in order to get those "big" state numbers. There is always the issue of Hillary looking like a traitor to women by tossing Geraldine. Hmm sexism or racism, which to choose? I cannot crawl into the Hillary mind and make statements, I can say what it looks like and I don't like it.

Hillary, you keep adding fuel to the fires of crappy short term campaigning in a Democratic Primary. Some of us are Democrats who actually care about the Party and the downstream candidates. Some of us have a vulnerable Senator named Smith who would be better campaigned against in the atmosphere of a popular and highly regarded Democratic Presidential candidacy. One that doesn't look like "anything goes." Trying to make a case against slippery Gordo isn't improved by having slippery at the top of the ticket. To be sure, winning is a very good thing, but how it is done also has consequences outside the simple fact of winning. It is, every passing day, more difficult to make the case that whomever the Democratic candidate is; that person should be voted for in opposition to McSame. I'll still, at this discouraging point, make that assertion. At some point it will become futile if Hillary is it, if her actions continue on this downward spiral. Perhaps she can afford to lose those voters and still win, maybe. If she actually managed the damage to the Democratic Party would be immense. Those voters will be gone for good, not just in that election and not just for Hillary. Every downstream candidate will suffer from having voters driven away. Everyone will suffer in two years and a second term Hillary run would continue the damage in the fourth year and sixth year and on. This is the Terry McAuliff version of the Democratic Party and how to lose and lose and lose.

Damn it Hillary, either play this straight up or get the hell out. Whatever happens to you, a whole bunch of us would like to still have a Party when this is done. This is important, the idea of having a well functioning growing Party. Of all the years available for this Party to expand and enlarge its influence this one is maybe the very best since FDR. Can you wrap your head around the size of the opportunity? Do you honestly want to throw this away?

If your answer is for the Clinton campaign to keep on as is, your answer is clear and it stinks.

The heck with it. Speaking of affirmative action, Geraldine & Tip and Geraldine & VP, a fine argument made by a fine exemplar.


Ben said...

I think Hillary will win PA based on Demographics alone.

Jeff Alworth said...

Ferraro is impolitic--though that IS her politics--and she should have just apologized. But there is a dark cloud over this whole discussion, which is that it appears to be verboten to discuss race in this election. Maybe I'm just misreading it, but I think EVERYONE could have handled this a little better.

Chuck Butcher said...

Her third shot at it today manages to get into a little better space. It is still exactly what it was, impolitic. Everybody knows that there is something regarding race and sex in this contest, heck, Hillary can't stop talking about being female. Since it is as patently obvious as Obama's race the continual drumbeat can have only one aim, sexism.

C'mon, none of us have missed that there is a black man and a white woman running and unless you've lived your life on another planet you're aware that ground breaking is occurring. If either candidate keeps going to that, guess what they're appealing to.

Anonymous said...

You might not like what she said but what she said is true.

Chuck Butcher said...

Oh horsefeathers anon3:08,
He obviously couldn't be a black man in any position whatever if he weren't black. The assertion is that his success is due to blackness. He couldn't be where he is if he weren't all the things he is. That is a considerably different proposition.

Welcome to a place where abject stupidity gets called out, and not on a political agenda basis.

Anonymous said...

If Obama were white, he wouldn't embody hopes of a post-racial future. If he was white he be just a man with little actual experience that was a slick speaker. So basically he be another John Edwards.

Abject stupidity is ignoring the truth as you are doing.

Jeff Alworth said...

Anon, Obama's race is obviously a major factor in this election. But that it is uniformly positive--even in the Dem primary--is a little hard to defend. Is race the deciding factor for more pro-Obama voters than anti-? Who knows? But it's clear there ARE anti-Obama voters influenced by his race.

But in no case is race the ONLY factor. Obama isn't just a "slick speaker." He's an exceptionally gifted writer who can deliver speeches eloquently enough to carry the message. He's an even-tempered pol who's style appeals to voters. He's extremely likeable and down-to-earth. He's young and good-looking. And he's black.

This discussion seems to always select one of these factors to the exlusion of others, but in what world does a candidate have only a single element of personality?

ThePoliticalCat said...

Chuck, you put your finger on it. Clinton doesn't care what she breaks to get there, she'll break us all and everything we own to win. And this type of dirty politics is just unacceptable to independents, non-political junkies, and a lot of Democrats, especially those who don't like "isms."

Chuck Butcher said...

sure is nice to not be the only one defending my point
tnx all