22 October 2008

2008 or 1956?

This is a deeply disturbing scene. A line of african-americans, waiting to vote, being heckled and intimidated by an angry group of white protesters. In North Carolina.

This was reported in the conservative Washington Times, of all places. Meanwhile, GOP elected officials such as Reps Bachmann and Hayes describe Obama and liberals as "anti-americans" who "hate real americans who work hard and believe in God." GOP robo-calls and mailers decry Obama as a dangerous crypto-muslim terrorist. The candidate for Vice President apparently sees a distinction between areas of this country which are "pro-america" and which are not.

Demagoguery like this is dangerous and concerning. I never thought I would see a presidential campaign get so deep in the slime. It's kind of amazing to see that McCain is now running a campaign that makes George W Bush's look principled and honest, in comparison. At least Bush had the class (or wit) to keep his official campaign separate from the slime, letting the 527s do the dirty work (and then tepidly deploring it). In this campaign, some of the nastiest cmears are coming directly from the mouths of the candidates, and their surrogates, taking a cue from the principals, ratchet up the rhetoric yet more. It makes Nixon look good in comparison.

McCain is going to lose, and he deserves to lose after a campaign like this. And worse for him, has will have destroyed his reputation in the process.


  1. I've seen parallels between certain GOP tactics and comments and McCarthyism, too.

    How shocking that someone like Bachmann would call for an investigation of all Congressional Democrats to make sure they were really pro-American.

    You'd think people would be embarrassed by their own stupidity and narrow-mindedness, but I guess you'd have to have some personal insight for that.

    I would like to add that all candidates for office should have to pass a test demonstrating they understand the basics of how our government works.

  2. Just imagine how raucous things will get once Obama loses. The horrors!

    I don't condone protests at voting places, but I think it's a stretch to accuse those people of racism btw. That argument is getting really old.

  3. Scalpel,

    You are right, to a point, and I was careful not to call these protesters racist. It's just good-old-fashioned voter intimidation (dressed up as free speech). But voter intimidation in the south has a long and sordid history, and race is the central piece of that story. It's "disturbing."

  4. "it's a stretch to accuse those people of racism btw. That argument is getting really old."

    Scalpel, I don't know what part of America you are living in but if you, for one second, even think that racism or any kind of prejudice thinking for that matter does not exist, you are in complete denial. No surprise there - for you to state that the argument of racism is "old" truly shows how ignorant you are. Time to start living in the real world Scalpel. Stop living in your little world of ignorance and denial.

  5. Politics in general has degenerated. Gone are the days of Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neil fighting it out on the issues but still respecting each other as men. The Right has no monopoly on boorishness - for every idiot Neocon I can name a Whoopi Goldberg, a Nancy Pelosi, or a Michael Moore. If you think Rush Limbaugh is hateful, try a dose of Randi Rhodes. That woman has hate in her heart for certain.

    For many years, the Left has thought of the Right as bad people, while the Right thought of the Left as merely stupid. These days, the Right is beginning to think of the Left as bad people as well.

    Bob Barr for President!

    P.S. - Doc Shadowfax, you've got a typo: "some of the nastiest cmears are coming directly"

  6. What's next--a poll tax on minorities? That video was truly sad and contemptible.

  7. Obama and his ilk are the only ones I see injecting race into the equation.

    Obama, as president, would mark the beginning of a new marxist era.

  8. I like race-baiting posts in medical blogs. It's awesome.

  9. You’ve got your history and your constitution mixed up yet again Shadowfax.

    First, in 1956, the problem was not mere heckling of African-American voters. It was active, legalized disfranchisement. Only it wasn’t perpetrated by Republicans. It was carried out by Democrats. Orval Faubus ( a Clinton mentor) was a Democrat. Lester Maddox (a Carter mentor) was a Democrat. They guys with the water hoses were ALL Democrats.

    As to “voter intimidation,” it looks to me like these people are across the street, well away from any actual voters. And I don’t see any sign that any of the voters are terribly “intimidated.” These people (the hecklers) may be boneheads, but they have the right to peacefully gather and express their viewpoint, no matter how stupid or obnoxious

    What is truly “dangerous” is your creepy desire to silence them.

  10. "What is truly “dangerous” is your creepy desire to silence them."

    I just cannot believe anyone can defend harassement at voter booths.

    Many communties prohibit it, ya know.

    Harrassing someone at a voting booth is not my definition of constitutionally defended free speech.

    Shadowfax: Thank you thank you thank you for being the voice of reason in medical blog land!


  11. I just cannot believe anyone can defend harassement at voter booths.

    You evidently have reading comprehension issues, ladyk73. No one is defending harrassment.

    As to the definition of free speech, it's not your call. That was defined by the founders. That goes for freedom of assembly as well.

    These things are not subject to limitation according to popular opinion or political correctitude. Everyone gets to talk.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.