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  • « NYT calls for Rangel to step aside | Main | Obama and McCain on the financial crisis: hello? »

    September 15, 2008

    Financial Times to Dems: You're in a hole. Stop digging.

    Posted by: Kevin

    Ftdems_inholeClive Crook, of the Financial Times of London, joins in urging the Democrats to stop digging themselves deeper in the hole their in:

    For Mr McCain to win the election against the odds that faced him pre-Palin – with the economy in the tank and the incumbent Republican president setting records for unpopularity – would be sensational enough. For this to happen because of his vice-presidential pick, a decision that is usually of next to no consequence, beggars belief. The Democrats had to bring all their resources to getting themselves into this fix. They proved equal to the task. ...

    Certainly, the Democrats can see they are in a hole. Somehow, though, the word has gone out: “Keep digging.” Mr Obama is also urged to be less cool and lose his temper. Voters adore an angry candidate, you see. “Dig faster, and be more angry,” is the advice coming down from the political geniuses who decided it was a fine idea to laugh at Ms Palin in the first place. A recurring television image in the past few days has been the split-screen contrast between a serenely smiling Republican operative and a fulminating red-faced Democrat about to have a stroke.

    Efforts to smear the governor proceed at a frantic pace. ... Of course, they will find things. They may even find something important. But the sheer swarming zeal for trivial malfeasance and family embarrassments is rapidly raising the bar for impropriety. I think that many voters – and not just committed Republicans – find this whole spectacle disgusting, so on top of everything else Ms Palin is now getting a sympathy vote.

    Democrats will deny it, but they opened this new front in the culture war by their response to the Palin nomination. The mess they are in is their own fault. They still seem intent on driving significant numbers of women and moderates over to the other side and Mr McCain’s political instinct is doubtless to help this rift in the electorate widen further. It could be a winning strategy. But good politics is not the same thing as responsible leadership. I intend it as a compliment to Mr McCain when I say that if his means to victory in this election is to divide the country, it is a victory he should not want.

    Read the whole piece.  Crook is not a GOP fan at all, but a very incisive British observer in Washington.  I'm still undecided in this election.  And I think that unless things change direction in the Obama camp, this will indeed be another 1988 and not another 1980, no matter how I vote.  Frankly, Crook is speaking for me when he says many voters find the current spectacle disgusting.  I'd hoped this would be an unprecedentedly issues-driven, honorable race.  Now, I'm tuning out.

    If you're an Obama fanatic, it does your cause no good to continue operating in a fog of denial.  Pull yourselves together, people.  You're blowing this election.

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    Comments

    1. Hawyer on Sep 15, 2008 11:58:18 AM:

      Kev:

      I couldn't agree with you more!

      Obama has all but conceded the election due to three strategic miscalculations:

      1. Not swallowing his galactic ego and picking Hillary as his veep.
      2. Not being prepared for the unrepentant depravity of the Republican spin machine, which has elevated swiftboating to an article of faith.
      3. And most importantly, being born a Negro.

    1. Strict Scrutiny on Sep 15, 2008 12:28:29 PM:

      Hawyer,

      You have got to stop with this whole "Negro" bit. This is at least the second time you've used this racist, highly offensive term, which has no place in any modern discourse. It's not a "legitimate" word, as you contend. Just stop.

    1. Hawyer on Sep 15, 2008 12:48:31 PM:

      Kev:

      In my enthusiasm to agree with Prof. Cook - I vehemently disagree with him on one point: "Democrats will deny it, but they opened this new front in the culture war by their response to the Palin nomination. The mess they are in is their own fault."

      Come on now, The Palin nomination was a hail Mary play by the RNC (don't think for a minute McCain was consulted on the move) to reignite the culture wars - famously deemed by liberal talkster Randi Rhodes as the "one fetus into the end zone pass, wide reveiver Alaska #1 Sarah Palin.

      Her nomination was so cynical, so off-the-wall, such a pure-political shenanigan; she is so unqualified, so unvetted, so shallow, so fucking infantile in her world view; she is a religious nut case who has never contemplated the constitutional pluralistic democracy in which she was born; and that is just at first blush.

      Democrats who thought the culture war had cooled to the point of political irrelevance were nonplussed at how seamlessly the Miss Alaska runner-up could play them like a piano.

      I had hoped America would not have to hit bottom before voters held an intervention, but apparently we in for four more years of a rudderless neocon free-for-all.

      God help us if McCain's 72-year-old heart gives out.

    1. Hawyer on Sep 15, 2008 12:55:18 PM:

      Strict Scrutiny:

      Get over your sensitive self and read what I wrote. I used the term Negro for literary emphasis - as that is incontrovertibly the lens in which Obama is viewed by a broad spectrum of the Republican electorate - especially that formidable swath of Southern Democrats which were coaxed into the GOP by Nixon's Southern strategy. Racism is alive and well in the US of A - so don't blame the messenger.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Sep 15, 2008 3:31:29 PM:

      Oh, it's getting even better; now we have Obama supporters writing editorials in national newspapers claiming that people who live in the Pacific Northwest are intolerant racists.

    1. Scott on Sep 16, 2008 7:30:34 PM:

      No, no, no. Obama supporters need to spread his message and expose McCain and Palin. Stop writing messages on liberal websites and go to the places where it matters. As an example I have visited the ABC News blogs since the beginning of the year. In the primaries Obama supporters flooded the websites with messages. Now it's about 50-50 Obama-McCain supporters. Obama supporters have retreated from getting his message out.

      Palin's favorability ratings have dropped this past week from 52% to 45%. Her unfavorables increased 37% to 44%. People on the internet need to keep exposing McCain and Palin.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Sep 17, 2008 3:21:48 PM:

      Agreed; Obama supporters should continue to spread his message, just as they're doing.

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