The Friday Political Thread: Extra-Stimulated Edition

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The real action is tomorrow in South Carolina, but here's a quick wrapup:

Quote of the week

"Shame on you!"—Former President/respectable person Bill Clinton telling a CNN reporter to STFU about the race issue. It's unclear whether he said this before or after cutting a radio ad asking blacks to vote for his wife.

The week in brief

– The Democrats paid tribute to Martin Luther King by holding their ugliest-ever debate. We learned that Hillary Clinton started Wal-Mart, Barack Obama is a slumlord, and John Edwards is a wimp among wimps.

– The Republicans held a mostly colorless debate in Florida.

– Ron Paul scored the endorsements of Gary Johnson and Don Luskin and raked in $1.8 million in a MLK Day moneybomb.

– Dennis Kucinich teleported out of the presidential race.

– The FISA retroactive rolled on, and Chris Dodd pledged to filibuster retroactive immunity after the Senate defeated a measure that would have stripped it.

Fact-checking Rudy. Byron York does a hell of a service reporting what actually happened to the Rudy Giuliani campaign over this past month. Giuliani's campaign manager spins that the early primaries were not really winnable and York stands his ground:

Yes, Giuliani's rivals were strong in those states. But Giuliani was, at times, strong, too. According to the RealClearPolitics average of polls, he was second in Iowa as late as the first of October. He was second in New Hampshire as late as the first of December. He was leading in Michigan as late as mid-December. And he was tied for the lead in South Carolina at the same time. All those competitive positions were gone by the end of December.

The Giuliani strategy was to come in second or third in the very early states, and ad spending in those states reflects it. How they've gotten away with arguing that Rudy wanted a Florida showdown all along, I don't quite know.

Paul's Resilience.
After Fred Thompson left the race, Ron Paul's campaign site ran a triumphant image of the five remaining candidates: Paul, Mitt, Rudy, Mac, and Huck. The next day USA Today ran a cover story on the race showing… everyone except Paul. The candidate's 2nd place finish in Nevada has done nothing to break him into stories on the race, and it's virtually certain that, without Thompson and Hunter doing latrine duty, Florida will give Paul his first last-place finish.

The upside is that he still has millions of dollars—more than Huckabee—and his support in the Feb. 5 states isn't being influenced at all by the war at the top of the ballot. Rasmussen (which overestimated Paul's finish in New Hampshire) puts him at 12 percent in Georgia, a state where libertarians have usually fared well, thanks in part to the influence of radio icon Neal Boortz. Campaigners in smaller states like Montana and Alaska feel good about replicating the Nevada finish and racking up delegates. But the once-promising California primary, where delegates are awarded by congressional district, looks like less fertile ground. Polling in the Bay Area shows John McCain with a solid lead and Paul only in high single/low double digits.

Below the fold

David Frum pokes at a wobby stool.

Brad Warthen thinks Obama's young, grassroots organization will be the story out of South Carolina, if he wins.

Phil Klein witnesses the birth of Mitt Romney, populist.

And in case we're starting to lose track of what's really important, I turn Politics and Prog over to Geddy Lee and company.

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  1. The candidate’s 2nd place finish in Nevada has done nothing to break him into stories on the race, and it’s virtually impossible that, without Thompson and Hunter doing latrine duty, Florida will give Paul his first last-place finish.

    I think you mean “certain”, not “impossible”.

  2. There was no story because was a distance second place, and hasn’t been competitive anywhere else.

  3. As Reason should know, it is all about patience and education in promoting freedom for the individual. Besides we have one more debate and the release of the 4th quarter fund raising where Ron Paul will do well. Maybe the Louisiana results will get straightened out as well, which should give Paul a boost. Additionally, Giuliani will likely be out of money and drop out. Huckabee is broke but he does not need much money to stay in. Paul has the bucks and the will to keep on trucking. He will stay in. Additionally, if there is a brokered convention, there is a back up strategy to pick up Paul delegates on the 2nd and third rounds of voting when the delegates legal commitments have expired. That is why Louisiana and other delegate selection states are important. That means all of them. Keep the faith. It ain’t over until it is over. And there is always the education component. A lot of college students are hearing about libertarian principles for the first time. This all seems like a win win scenario for Ron Paul and his libertarian message.

  4. 1. If Reason would like to encourage better debates and better MSM coverage, they have it within their power to do so. As I’ve pointed out a few times here in the past, it wouldn’t cost more than $10k or so to put on one or two of these.

    2. If Reason readers would like to encourage better debates and better MSM coverage, get out there and do it yourself by asking the candidates the questions the MSM is afraid to ask, then uploading the responses to video sharing sites.

    3. In other news, if the MSM were doing their job, John McCain would be out of the race because of this: one of McCain’s outreach directors is a former official of the MexicanGovernment. Needless to say, the tranzis at Reason would probably agree with McCain’s choice.

    4. Bubba and Arnie forgot to tell you something.

    5. At least BarackHusseinObama won’t try to grab your guns.

    6. Here’s a long article about the MSM’s failures vis-a-vis coverage of my fave issue: tinyurl.com/25emdr (FrontPageMag)

    7. The U.N.’s Institute International de l’Anti-Proggue a recommendu this antidote for all prog-related symptoms.

  5. I didn’t realize how much Romney was kicking ass. I’m suprised, he has as many delegates as everyone else combined. Well close, he’s one shy from that claim. Paul has three times as many as Rudy.

    Romney – 73
    McCain – 38
    Huckabee – 29
    Paul – 6
    Guiliani – 2
    Total – 148
    Source: http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/primaries/results/scorecard/#R

  6. Yeah Romney is in front, has the money to stay in, and if he can pick up voters from the other candidates to overtake McCain will win the nomination. The race is also so wide open because of the number of winner take all states in the republican race, no one will have any idea who the nom will be until after super tuesday, or perhaps until the convention.

  7. “Second place Nevada finish for Paul”??

    Gimmee a break. He finished barely ahead of McCain. They were essentially tied. And 3 times less votes than Romney received. How is that a “victory”?

    Funny nobody in the Ron Paul campaign talks about Wyoming any more. That was the State they were “definitely going to win.”

    Not a single delegate from WY to Ron Paul.

    And now headlines all over Paulist Blogs like NolanChart.com “Ron Paul wins Louisiana.”

    Actually, he placed 3rd behind “Pro-Life Uncommitted,” and McCain. Hardly a “win” for Paul.

    Where’s Ron Paul’s win gonna come from? Strong Paul States like Nevada, Wyoming and even neighboring Louisiana have all given him the thumbs down. Hell, he couldn’t even break double digits in New Hampshire.

    (No, Paul did not get 10% in NH as his supporters report, but rather 9.7%).

  8. “[Ron Paul’s] 2nd place finish in Nevada has done nothing to break him into stories on the race.”

    Exactly! The media prefers to talk about “everyone but Paul” as if, through determined neglect, the $20 Million Dollar Man will simply cease to exist. Because, of course, if Big Media isn’t covering you, you really aren’t there, get it?

    But at what point does plausibly-deniable neglect turn into detectably-deliberate obtuseness?

    Ah, those troubling Paulites, who keep flashing their signage in the background of every other candidate’s photo op! A curse on their seemingly limitless pockets, which they keep tapping to keep their man running.

    Paul may be going nowhere… but, er, that is precisely the problem for the GOP machine bosses and the media who’d rather see him gone already. Paul just won’t get the memo: Washington and their allied punditry don’t want you, Dr. Ron.

    But many Americans do. And we’ll continue to make our presence felt, media blackout or no.

  9. The Louisiana results have been straightened out. They were straight 4 days ago.

    Ron Paul lost and lost bigtime. He didn’t even place 2nd, but rather a distant third.

    Of course, the Ron Paul kool-aid drinkers keep drumming up conspiracies under every rock.

  10. Because Paul doesn’t deserve nearly the amount of media he’s already received. He has proven nothing at all in the first 5 to 6 contests.

    His big state should have been Wyoming. He got body slammed there, not even gaining a single delegate.

    Nevada should have been his territory next. Again, disastrous defeat for him, despite cries from his supporters for days before that he would “easily win Nevada.”

    Now he’s polling 3% in Florida. But somehow his supporters will spin his 3% FL showing as a “victory.” Or, they’ll say “Florida was stolen from Paul.”

  11. Eric,

    But you can’t very well cast stones–Giuliani is not exactly shaking the pillars of America, either. McCain’s likely to win Florida, and, if he doesn’t, Romney will. Giuliani’s done if that happens.

    By the way, Jack Kemp is apparently endorsing McCain. Kemp’s got pretty good libertarian credentials (why isn’t he running?), so that endorsement was quite a surprise.

  12. Eric, how’s Rudy doing?

  13. – Ron Paul scored the endorsements of Gary Johnson and Don Luskin and raked in $1.8 million in a MLK Day moneybomb.

    Luskin is here:

    http://www.poorandstupid.com/chronicle.asp

    Hey Weigle, why doesn’t Reason like Luskin?

  14. Yeah, hows your favorite candidate doing Dondi?

  15. Really, J sub D, we must coordinate these postings better.

  16. Et tu, Cesar?

  17. “Gimmee a break. He finished barely ahead of McCain. They were essentially tied.”

    “(No, Paul did not get 10% in NH as his supporters report, but rather 9.7%).”

    So, to sum up, being precise about what happened in Nevada is somehow misrepresenting the situation there, but _not_ being precise about what happened in NH (rounding up 0.3% for fuck’s sake) is somehow misrepresenting the situation there.

    Care to explain that logic a little more, Eric? Or should I call you Hacky McHackington?

  18. Eric, don’t you see? Look at the times, it’s a conspiracy. Go here to learn more.

  19. That chick in the video has a HUGE beak. Ugly as sin ta boot.

    ->slinks away quietly in his red barchetta to worship in the temples of the syrinx

  20. Why isn’t Paul doing better in California? The answer is poor campaigning. I’ll say more in a post-mortem after the primaries are over, but it essentially boils down to the official campaign providing no leadership, and the grassroots campaign being a bunch of lunkheads.

    For a couple of months I was trying to get voter registration data for my county. The price for non-campaigns was over $500. I tried and tried to get the campaign to get it for me (it would have been free to them), but they were unresponsive and when they did reply, gave me instructions that were not applicable to my county. I finally got it, but no thanks to the campaign. Then a month later they sent out a California coordinator to teach us all how to do door-to-door campaigning. He came to our county on Thanksgiving Day morning, the worst possible time slot of the month. Overall the official campaign in California has been non-responsive, inept and scarce.

    Then there are local grassroots lunkheads. With less than two weeks to the primary, we need to be going door-to-door and telephoning every registered Republican. But more people are showing up for silly sign waving than are going door-to-door or telephoning. Meetup assistant organizers are actually telling people to wave signs instead of canvassing! Meetups aren’t discussions on how to win the campaign, but conspiracy rumor swapmeets.

    I attended the local county Libertarian Party meeting last week, and they have more organization in their little finger than all the Ron Paul meetups do combined. Sigh.

  21. Notice how Dondero always fails to respond to a challenging point.

  22. The real conspiracy here is that it only took him at most three seconds to switch guitars… if you believe the video. Unless… could the video be missing time? If so, what happened to it? Did they use the Randian Time Shifting Powers available only to 32nd Level Inducted Libertarians?

  23. Notice how Dondero always fails to respond to a challenging point.

    From my strange convoluted mind,
    Eric Dondero—>ED—>Educationally Disabled.

  24. Paul is doing well in GA despite Neal Boortz.
    Neal endorsed him back in ’88 but he is all about the %30 + VAT tax now. He has hardly mentioned Paul except to diss him.

    I’d argue that libertarian sentiment in GA has helped Neal’s career as much or more than he has libertarianism.
    I was in the geographic corner where AL, GA, and TN all meet this week and every intersection had a Ron Paul sign. Paul should do at least high single digits in most of the former “Confederate States”

  25. behind Lifeson was a roadie with the strat. he holds the guitar with the strap raised and lifeson removes the one and steps into the other. seen it with other bands many times.

  26. Ask John McCain about his Hispanic outreach director, Juan Hernandez (former Mexican government official)

    Lonewacko, now that I have your attention, this is for you.

    ?They’re coming to take me away, HA HA
    They’re coming to take me away, HO HO HEE HEE HA HA
    To the funny farm
    Where life is beautiful all the time
    And I’ll be happy to see
    Those nice, young men
    In their clean, white coats
    And they’re coming to take me away, Ha-haaa!?

    ?To the happy home
    With trees and flowers and chirping birds
    And basket weavers who sit and smile
    And twiddle their thumbs and toes
    And they’re coming to take me away, Ha-haaa!?

    Apologies to Napoleon the 14th

  27. The FISA retroactive rolled on, and Chris Dodd pledged to filibuster retroactive immunity after the Senate defeated a measure that would have stripped it

    Is it to late to support Dodd for president?

  28. The Klein article is good. Jesus, everyone knew that Romney has flip-flopped many major positions for this election, but heck now he’s flipping during the campaign. He’s a creep…But as I predicted long ago he’s got the best chance for the nomination. He’s got the money to play for every delegate and he is not consciously targetd by any of the stalwarts of the GOP coalition (NRA, anti-taxers, immigration, pro-lifers) the way Rudy (NRA, pro-lifers), McCain (immigration), and Huck (anti-taxers) are.

    Hillary really came off as a selfish d*ck at the last debate. She could not get through a sentence without attacking Obama. It seemed a bit obssessed and maniacal to me. She’s hurting whoever the eventual nominee will be…I hope she gets whupped…

  29. “Notice how Dondero always fails to respond to a challenging point.”

    I think it might be because no one who’s asked him a challenging question has used their real name, and he’s boldly taken the principled position that he wouldn’t respond to “anonymous” posters.

    Also, he’s the biggest hack who ever hacked in these here parts.

  30. “””””Second place Nevada finish for Paul”??

    Gimmee a break. He finished barely ahead of McCain. They were essentially tied. And 3 times less votes than Romney received. How is that a “victory”? “”””

    You can question the term victory but Ron Paul coming in second place in Nevada is beyond question. McCain came in third.
    http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/primaries/results/state/#NV

    “””Not a single delegate from WY to Ron Paul. “””

    Neither did anyone else but Romney. So what’s the point?
    http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/primaries/results/scorecard/#R

    Doonnnnddddddeeeerrrrrrrooooooooooooooooo

  31. Hey DONDERRRRRRRROOOOOOOOOOO hows your boy Rudy doing again?

  32. Frum’s piece started out OK, and has a decent overall premise, but really trailed off at the end.

    Some wince inducing phrases at first reading:

    Last, foreign-policy conservatives must recognize that crucial blocs of voters have wrongly but unmistakeably put 9/11 behind them (my emphasis)

    Jesus, by this time we had ‘put behind us’ the Maine, the Lusitania/Zimmerman telegram, and Pearl Harbor. By the next inauguration, about enough time will have passed for us to put behind us both Gulf of Tonkin and Lexington/Concord.

    What the Republican Party desperately needs is a domestic program that responds to the values and needs of the tens of millions of American families making around $70,000 a year.

    Overall, you’re earning more than 2/3 of the households in the country if your household income is $70,000. And based on this there are just about 15 million of your peers (+/- 10k of 70K) not 10’s of millions.

    And in the parts of country where Republicans dominate, $70,000 is considered rich.

  33. Oh, and count Fort Sumter and the Alamo as two more things it took less time to put behind us.

  34. I don’t think I’ll ever get over Macho Grande, though.

  35. David, do you consider Boortz a libertarian (I noticed you only called him a radio icon)?

    Also, on what are you basing your assertion that libertarians have fared well in Georgia “thanks in part to the influence of radio icon Neal Boortz“?

    If you’ve read my past comments, I’m sure you know where this is going (SIV has already touched on it). Just curious.

    Another topic… How come no mention of the Romney whisper?

    Dondero, for someone supposedly so interested in politics, you know very little. The Louisiana GOP has a statement on their website that says the results are unofficial. It goes on to state that, in 5 of the 7 districts (1,2,4,5,6), after the eligible provisional ballots are added to totals, the outcome in each of those districts may change.

    In Nevada, no state delegates were selected (that is why Nevada wasn’t penalized for moving up their caucus). Only precinct delegates were selected and they were selected before the straw poll vote started. No one will know how many Nevada delegates each candidate receives until March. None of the campaigns have released any info on the leanings of the elected precinct delegates but it is very possible that Ron Paul garnered a larger proportion of delegates than suggested by the straw poll (and the MSM). The Paul supporters have been trying to get a count on their own. I’m not sure how accurate this information is but if you go through the entire thread and compare the precinct numbers with the popular vote, it’s quite surprising. In some precincts where Romney got 60% of the vote, Paul got 50% of the delegates. In some Nye county precincts, 80% of the delegates are Paul supporters. Again, I don’t know how accurate this info is (it’s a public forum) but anyone who claims to know the final delegate counts for Nevada is either lying or psychic.

    A precinct delegate’s take.

    Accurate info about how the Nevada Caucus works.

  36. Going back to the beginning of the campaign, I never expected Ron Paul to win. That having been said, and in fairness to anyone who thinks otherwise, I have been extremely surprised at how well he has done. I’m impressed at his vote totals; I had originally expected him to pretty much get below 3% in most every state (because I didn’t think the Republicans would give any votes to an anti-war candidate), and he has far outperformed that expectation and continued to do so after neither winning any states nor getting much media attention. I realize that to his strong supporters, this must not be much comfort, but I think that even though there’s little if any chance he could even be a factor in the nomination, his campaign has been surprisingly successful on most levels.

    Similarly, I have been surprised at how poorly Giuliani has done. Though he is probably my least favorite candidate (yes, below Huckabee), I expected him to do well. He has instead done worse than Ron Paul in virtually every state. Unless I’m mistaken, the only time he beat the man I expected to do so poorly was in New Hampshire, where he was only barely ahead. I suppose that I expected that Giuliani’s popularity after September 11th would make him a very tough contender. I guess I knew too little about his personality for my expectations to be correct.

  37. psst… Kolohe.. it is “Mucho Grande” (at least from the movie)

  38. …I didn’t think the Republicans would give any votes to an anti-war candidate…

    My father, aunt and uncle all independently decided to vote for Paul in the primaries (they’re all long time R’s) – mainly because of he’s the only anti-war candidate.

  39. BP – that’s good to hear. Watching the news and reading the news online I think can give you a skewed view of the overall opinions of Americans, right or left.

    I don’t vote, but when I checked out the candidates’ positions, apparently I’m anti-war enough (both Iraq and drug) that the closest people to my position after Paul were Gravel and Kucinich. This is even though I disagree with both of them on almost everything economically (and with regards to gun rights).

  40. Lots of us (nominal) Republicans are against the war in Iraq, and more than a few of us (myself and RP included) opposed it from the start. However, since the Dems seem dead set on a domestic policy of socialism and their foreign policy prescriptions aren’t much better than our current situation, many of us hold our noses and vote for less than optimal Repubs (though if Huck or Rudy gets nominated, I won’t bother voting. I’ll just buy guns and ammo and drive out to the mountains to wait for either a revolution or the end of civilization).

  41. About the Romney whisper, NBC says “As far as figuring out the mystery of who or where it came from, that is being worked on, and we hope to have an answer soon”.

    Maybe it was Dondero. Didn’t he switch to Romney a couple threads back? Can anyone confirm that Dondero was not in Florida yesterday?

  42. economist –

    I’ve always disagreed with the Democrats on economics, but I’ve never really bought into the idea that the Republicans were much closer to Libertarians than were the Democrats.

    Of the three-legged stool of Reagan about which you hear so much these days, I only agree with really one of the legs. Social conservatism doesn’t really fit with libertarianism (I’d say the only point at which it’s even neutral toward it is on abortion) and neither does the security / law and order leg (every time I see an article by Radley Balko I remind myself of this). Of course the Democrats aren’t really any better. On a the civil rights angle they may have an edge (again, as long as guns don’t count) and on social liberalism is mostly in line with libertarianism, but there’s so much that they are far off on as well.

    Of course, I’ve long since given up imagining that any politician even exists that will agree with me on much of anything.

  43. Unemployaphobe: I think they’re exceptions, but there are a few out there. Right after the debate, though, the local channel had an interview with a few local voters. Included among them was some matronly hag who said she had been for Giuliani, mainly because of 9/11, but after this debate, was going to vote for Romney because she thought he looked like JFK. No, I’m not joking.

    I always get Kucinich & Gravel high up in my “preference” on those things, too, for the same reasons. One small positive about that – there are three major party candidates who are talking about ending the War on Drugs. Right now, they’re the “kooks”, but it’s still an improvement over just having the one L candidate saying it.

    Franklin – his phone number’s on his website. Give him a call and ask.

  44. “I have been extremely surprised at how well he has done.”

    Ron Paul has basically been a success story, in my opinion. Libertarians don’t normally make national news. College kids don’t normally get energized about the Federal Reserve. The ideas are out there now. And I know lots of people who won’t go so far as to vote for Paul, but are vaguely sympathetic to the message.

  45. Why and the hell is this magazine still giving any positive press at all to Ron Paul? Perhaps you are priming him to win the 1st Annual David Duke Political Courage Award.

    I guess if someone calls you on supporting a bigot, you can always just claim someone else wrote the article.

  46. Miss Teen USA South Carolina… No not the “US Americans” one, but the other one.

  47. BP: Yeah for me, I think it was that Libertarian cowboy dude who dropped out 80%, Ron Paul 77%, Kucinich and Gravel 58%, for precisely the same reasons.

    I’m still holding out for “Hypothetical Dream Candidate” though. He panders to me in a way no other candidate does.

  48. Question: Why is Ron Paul’s campaign trying to collect $5M more by Feb. 5? Wouldn’t that be too late for Super Tuesday? I mean, what’s the point? I thought he’d want the money way ahead of that date so that he can put more ads on TV. Are there important primaries after the 5th?

  49. Newsflash: Sharapova just won her 1st Australian Open. Never been a big fan, but still congrats.

  50. Ali: I think there are some people involved in Ron Paul’s campaign who probably don’t really know what they’re doing. (At least I hope that’s the case – otherwise I’d be afraid some of his campaign staff might just be trying to line their pockets.)

  51. SWDWTLHJ- Yeah, weird.

  52. “Now there’s no more oak oppression,
    For they passed a noble law.
    And the trees are all kept equal
    with hatchet, axe and saw”

    Probably says more about politics than 1000 threads here.

    It;s pretty obvious to me that it’ll be Clinton vs Romney or McCain. The only good thing about the campaign now is watching the food fight between Bill and Barack. No matter what, freedom and liberty is on the run.

    I’ll still vote for Ron Paul on Super Tuesday. It’s only because he most closely represents my political philosophy. In light of the TNR/Paul hoohaw, I’ll have to hold my nose while doing it. I don’t know how culpable Paul is in all of that, but at the very least he shows either no sense for detail or he’s just plain lazy. At worst, he’s a fellow traveler with bigots and doesn’t deserve to hold high office. My worst fear is that libertarians will become tainted with the bigotry that’s been exposed. Fortunately, Bill Clinton has come along to steal the racial angle. At any rate, Paul is a flawed candidate and the more I see him (and his followers), the less I like him.

    The best we could have hoped is that exposure for Ron Paul could help spread the message of libertarianism. I think what has happened is that we’ve found out just how hard that will be. It’s going to take someone a lot more attractive and articulate than Paul to do it.

    The worst thing that happened this week was the twinbill of the Fed interest rate cut and the bloom of bipartisanship in the form of the stimulus package. Dust off your WIN buttons. You’re gonna need up later this year.

  53. passivatedObserver-

    You sure?

  54. Reason sucks

  55. Franklin-
    Well, I know you weren’t talking to me, but I won’t let that stop me from spouting off anyway.
    I lived in Macon for two years right at the turn of the century. Boortz was the second most popular radio show of any type in the Atlanta market (limbaugh was first), so his influence is substantial. Also, Boortz has afaik always called himself a libertarian.

    So, it’s like how Ah-nold became a Republican;
    many GA Paul voters will think
    “I like what Boortz is saying, he says he’s a libertarian, so therefore I must be a libertarian. And if someone else calls himself a libertarian I will vote for them.”

    Now, when I was there, Boortz’s libertarianism was entirely self consistent because it was composed of attacks on Clinton and American liberals in general on economic matters coupled with antipathy of the Jesus wing of the Republican party and their cultural issues (forex, he was in favor of getting rid of the Confederate battle flag on the GA state flag.) And he has been quite straightforward at being against the drug war.

    Looking at his website periodically since I left, he’s taken a LouDobbsian turn over the last year or so. He’s more emphatically populist than before: He’s on the kick-em-out and seal-the-borders side on the immigration issue, and is somewhat Giulliani-esque wrt GWOT. I had left before the Iraq war run-up, so I’m not sure what he’s said about that.

  56. Kolohe – Hey, you’re right!

    I could swear it was “Mucho Grande”, I thought that was the joke. I’ll have to watch the movies again, be like the first time all over again.

  57. Rudy has morphed into Mitt Romney. When we started this campaign, Romney was a Social Conservative. Now he’s an Economic Conservative. You hardly hear about social issues any more.

    I attribute this to Romney’s campaign getting an influx of libertarian-minded supporters who’ve influenced him in that direction.

    Certainly the William Weld endorsement of Romney a few months ago helped.

    If Romney wins Florida, he’ll have an excellent shot of gaining the nomination. And libertarian Republicans will be quite pleased.

  58. “No switching” to Romney at all Franklin.

    I’ve been a “Romney-Iani” supporter since July of last year. Check the archives over at Libertarian Republican Blog.

    When Weld endorsed him, I followed.

  59. Pro Liberate, McCain is not likely to win Florida. 4 out 5 of the last polls had Romney ahead, but 2 to 3 points.

    A Romney win in Florida will be something to cheer for all libertarian Republicans and Fiscal Cons.

    (Except those on the fringe with Mr. 3% – Ron Paul.)

  60. How can a political wrapup not include the liveliest story of the week, which involved the mayor of Detroit, perjury, and spicy text messages that included use of the word “LOL.”

  61. Klein compares Romney to Herbert Hoover.

    Ouch.

  62. Just a Rush-related note: Lifeson is more clever these days. He created a stand for his acoustics to be anchored to so that he can actually play the acoustic while leaving the electric hanging around his neck. He may well have been using that on the ESL clip, but I don’t think he was.

    You can see it here at 1:15 in a nice performance of “Entre Nous” from opening night of last summer’s tour: http://youtube.com/watch?v=1utF0J-tnw8

    I’m somewhere the 9th row in front of him off to the side.

  63. Eric-forgive me if I am wrong, but it struck me that very recently you argued passionately that one of the major indicators of Rudy’s acceptability was his pro-choice stance (and I agree with you, that in itself is a reliable indicator of how likely a candidate will tell the Pat Robertson’s to go engage in relations with themselves). But now you say this:

    “If Romney wins Florida, he’ll have an excellent shot of gaining the nomination. And libertarian Republicans will be quite pleased.”

    Romney is one of the more anti-choice candidates running (well, at least NOW he is). How do you square this? I can’t think of any GOP candidate who doesn’t have at least a nominal stance of holding the line or lowering taxes and spending. But we do have some that have a better social record (Rudy and Paul) than others (Huckabee and Romney).

  64. Hell even McCain is more acceptable when it comes to social issues (if I remember he was not so strongly against stem cell research). And there is that whole “torture/detain/spy on American citizens” where Romney tends to suck butt…

  65. Oh, and don’t forget gun control…
    http://myclob.pbwiki.com/assault+weapons

  66. Crazy as LoneWhacko is, I gotta agree that it would be very cool to see the Reason Presidential Debate.

  67. MNG – Romney is a political tool who will do or say anything to get elected. DONDERRROOOOO!!! is a political tool who will do or say anything to seem relevant. He sees a like soul in Governor Morbot Goodhair, and his man-crush will not be stayed by the likes of policy.

  68. Rudy has morphed into Mitt Romney. When we started this campaign, Romney was a Social Conservative. Now he’s an Economic Conservative. You hardly hear about social issues any more.

    In other words, Romney switches to whatever position will win him votes. Wow how principled.

  69. MNG, he can’t. He told me one couldn’t be libertarian and be anti-second amendment. I pointed out Rudy is anti-gun, and he denied this despite the fact that all of New York City is a second-amendment free zone. Try getting a handgun permit there unless you’re a retired cop. You can’t.

  70. Meanwhile, over at the Wall Street Journal:

    The national catastrophe fund backed by Mr. Giuliani would allow private insurers and state pools to buy protection from the federal government, reducing the danger for any one state and limiting insurance companies’ exposure to big disasters.

    Hurricane relief is the latest local issue that has, at least temporarily, gained prominence in the presidential competition. In Iowa, nearly all the candidates embraced ethanol programs and support for corn subsidies. In Michigan, Gov. Romney used Sen. McCain’s support for higher fuel standards as a wedge with auto-industry executives and employees. Nevada successfully used its status as an early caucus state to pressure candidates to denounce a plan to dump nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain.

    One reason Florida pushed to move up its vote was to draw support for a national catastrophe fund, an idea strongly backed by Republican Gov. Charlie Crist and members of the state’s congressional delegation. Democrats Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have both said they support a federal catastrophe-insurance program.

    Many consumer groups balk, arguing it is wrong for taxpayers nationwide to subsidize beachfront homeowners. The Consumer Federation of America, which represents groups such as AARP, favors improving FEMA and the National Flood Insurance Program instead.

    The Florida Democratic Party praised Mr. Giuliani for his support, while pillorying Mr. McCain’s “inexplicable” opposition. “You wouldn’t not support it,” said Mark Bubriski, communications director of the Florida Democrats. “It’s like saying you don’t like oranges.”

    And McCain is the one who admits he doesn’t have a particularly good grasp of economics.

  71. Reason sucks

    Shouldn’t you be in church?

  72. In other words, Romney switches to whatever position will win him votes. Wow how principled.

    I’m not worried about principled, I’m worried about trustworthy. But yeah, he ain’t that either.

    Though, given two candidates who claim to support awful policies, I’ll take the one who can’t be trusted to implement them over the one who can be trusted to do so…

  73. Back to Rush again…try branching out a bit…

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=kkTFo-AZysQ

  74. As much as I dislike McCain, I’ve decided to vote for him just to piss Dondero off. Congratulations Dondero, your assholishness is really paying off.

  75. How can a political wrapup not include the liveliest story of the week, which involved the mayor of Detroit, perjury, and spicy text messages that included use of the word “LOL.”

    gadzook,

    Knowing that Detroit is always going to elect a democrat (Jeffery Dahmer, (D) would trounce Mother Theresa (R) here) I was actually warming up to Kwame Kirkpatrick. Some progress in the city has been made over the last 3-4 years.

    It isn’t be the first time somebody wasted their political capital on poontang. Expect our dysfunctional city council to take the lead in not running the city till a new mayor is elected. As I see it, the county prosecutor, Kym Worthy, has no choice but to bring charges against Kirkpatrick and his lover/chief of staff, Christine Beatty. I can’t find a silver lining in all of this. I knew Kwame had flexible morals, but I had hoped he’d be smarter than this.

  76. Ok, what exactly happened to the Mayor of Detroit? Did he pull a Mark Foley or something?

  77. They are still around that New Model Army…
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=dqFZ55iHfDY

  78. OK, everybody line up for the free govt candy:

    Fly the helicopter this way! Over here, over here!

  79. Subject: Will the disparity between black and white Democratic voters in South Carolina be reflected nationally, or is it a Southern thing?

  80. Subject: Will the disparity between black and white Democratic voters in South Carolina be reflected nationally, or is it a Southern thing?

    Its national. Hillary Clinton has successfully and very skillfully turned Obama into the “black candidate”. She will clean up with whites and hispanics on super Tuesday.

  81. Ok, what exactly happened to the Mayor of Detroit? Did he pull a Mark Foley or something?

    He lied in a civil lawsuit brought by fired cops about his love affair with his chief of staff, Then the Detroit Free Press got ahold of some text messages between the two that unequivocally demonstrates the perjury. Here is a summary of what’s going on.

  82. Ah, I thought he went after a 14-year old girl or something.

    Dirty scandal, but still nothing compared to having the chairman of your local public school board post nude pictures of himself on a gay sex site. Thats what happened down here about a year ago.

  83. Maybe, Cesar. On the other hand, this is the first contest in a state with a non-trivial black population, and it’s in the South, in the state where John Edwards grew up in a mill tahn.

    What makes you conclude that there’s something happening nationally? You saw polling results from Strom Thurmond’s old state?

  84. What makes you conclude that there’s something happening nationally? You saw polling results from Strom Thurmond’s old state?

    Its basically what the MSM has been saying for a while now.

    Obama has a big problem with hispanics also. Hispanics generally don’t vote for the black guy–at this point in time its been shown they are even less likely than white people to do it. Nevada confirms this, which makes California and other Super Tuesday states with big hispanic populations look very bad for Obama.

  85. BTW does anyone know when the polls close in SC?

  86. …still nothing compared to having the chairman of your local public school board post nude pictures of himself on a gay sex site.

    Wow. The local press must have creamed their jeans over that one.

  87. Cesar,

    Yeah, that’s what MSMBC (heh) has been saying. But once again, they seem to be drawing a conclusion about the national race purely from what’s happening in SC.

  88. Wow. The local press must have creamed their jeans over that one.

    They’re used to it. Between he and Gwen Hedgepeth its par for the course in Richmond city politics.

    Hedgepeth took $100,000 in bribes on camera from undercover FBI agents, then proceeded to say it was really a woman made to look like her by the Bush administration (!) because they don’t like “powerful black women”.

  89. I attribute this to Romney’s campaign getting an influx of libertarian-minded supporters who’ve influenced him in that direction.

    Hah hah hah hah! That’s the stupidest thing I’ve heard all week! If it’s true, then we need to fear that covert Clintonistas might “join” his campaign and influence him in the direction of universal health care. Oh wait, that already happened!

    I continue to be amazed at your Bizarro World claims that Rudy, Mitt, et al, are libertarians but Ron is not. It’s hilarious that you’ve been in the libertarian movement for so long, can drop a dozen libertarian names per second, yet you don’t have the first clue what a libertarian is! Hint: Neither Rudy nor Mitt are libertarians. They’re conservatives. Duh!

  90. I was actually warming up to Kwame Kirkpatrick.

    Fess up. It’s that “hip hop” mayor thing, isn’t it?
    Have they sold off the electric system yet? Some of my best memories are driving down dark streets where the traffic lights don’t work.

  91. Heres a subject–whats the most corrupt scandal thats ever taken place in the politics of your city? I just gave mine.

  92. Cesar,

    SC polls close at 7:00 Eastern.

  93. Fess up. It’s that “hip hop” mayor thing, isn’t it?

    Not really. But we have been getting some restoration of empty buildings, turning them into lofts and store. Particularly onlong Woodward.

    Have they sold off the electric system yet? Some of my best memories are driving down dark streets where the traffic lights don’t work.

    Nope. It gets brought up annually, shot down annually. What a waste of money. OTOH, no more city funding for the DIA or the zoo. They stubbornley continue to provide art and exotic animals to the public for viewing. If an economically rocked city like Detroit can support the cultural amenities w/o city help, your metropolitan area can do so as well.

    We still elect the city council at large vice using a ward system. The incumbents naturally like it that way. So much to do here, I’d welcome Democratic activists because the status quo sucks. Kwame it least wasn’t status quo. This perjury stuff is gonna bring him down.

  94. P Brooks:
    I know all the Democrats have come out specifically against Yucca mountain. I did not think the Republicans had, though. (and afaik only Romney and Paul actively campaigned in Nev, right?)

  95. By the way, the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Detroit Zoo are both world class operations. The DIA just finished a huge expansion/renovation, without city funding.

  96. Wow! Ron Paul raised $1,8 million on a day set aside to honor the man he called a pedophile in his newsletters.

    http://www.tnr.com/downloads/december1990.pdf

    After all, according to Ron Paul’s newsletters, King “seduced underage girls and boys,” was a “comsymp,” and should NEVER have had a federal holiday named after him:

    “What an infamy Ronald Reagan approved it!” “We can thank him for our annual Hate Whitey Day.”

    Will wonders never cease?

  97. Subject: Will the disparity between black and white Democratic voters in South Carolina be reflected nationally, or is it a Southern thing?

    joe, it is a Democrat thing and it is National.

    White Democrat voters in South Carolina are largely Yankee transplants.

  98. It would have to be a Democrat thing, SIV.

    There aren’t any black Republicans.

  99. J.C. WATTS!!

  100. I thought Hillary was married to the First Black President. Though in my experience black chicks aren’t fond of white women involved with black men.

  101. While white Democrats in South Carolina give Obama a level of support in the low twenties, a national ABC News/Washington Post survey released January 14 found that among white Democratic voters across the country; Obama does much better than among white southern Democrats.

    The ABC/Post poll showed 33 percent of white Democrats backing Obama nationally, with 41 percent supporting Clinton and 14 percent in Edwards’ corner. Nationally, there was only an 8 point spread between Clinton and Obama. Obama did less well among white voters nationally in a CBS poll released January 13, winning 24 percent to Clinton’s 42 percent and Edwards’ 13 percent. But he still beat Edwards by a solid 11 points.

  102. Some dude on Foxnews from Baron’s just said Ron Paul is the best candidate to answer voter concerns on the shaky economy. He drew parallels to Perot in ’92, but he strained it a bit by trying to equate the political effect of the current Iraq war with v 1.0

  103. So, contra the wishful thinking of some, that Obama has higher support among white Democrats nationally than among white Democrats in the South.

    The question is, there has been a trend in South Carolina, at least, that shows his relative share of the white vote dropping and his relative share of the black vote rising; is this a national trend or a southern trend?

    Most of the national polls show the race tightening, with Clinton’s lead down to the single digits. It’s unlikely that could be the result of only black voters switching to him. It is a certainty that it could not be the result of black voters switching to him while white voters move away from him.

  104. Whoa, gotta preview. That first sentence should be,

    “Contra the wishful thinking of some NON-DEMOCRATS, WE KNOW that Obama has more support among white Democrats nationally than in South Carolina.”

  105. Joe, all that says is the Clintons haven’t worked their political strategy on other states yet.

    Shes not really trying to drive a wedge between white and black voters as much as between hispanic and black voters anyway. Its the Clintons “hispanic strategy”. I bet we’ll see some racial push-polling directed at hispanics in California and New York in the next week magically pop up.

  106. don’t know about the trend in the white vote.

    But, i recall that early polls (circa sept/oct 2007) had Clinton with decisive leads in all demographics, including to the surprise of some african americans (by something like 65-35). This was attributed correctly to Clinton’s better name recognition and that Bill Clinton is held in the highest regard of just about any living politician by many (most?) african americans.

    This turnaround among African Americans from 65-35 for Clinton, to 75-25 for Obama (i’m not sure of the exact #) is striking. My guess it’s due to more exposure to Obama, many voters found they could in fact identify with him better than H Clinton. And, Iowa was a tipping point that proved Obama was electable by the body politic at large, which made Obama not a protest vote, but actually a positive one.

  107. …is this a national trend or a southern trend?

    With Obama & Clinton going after each other, it had to happen that the glow would fade from Obama. His “fairy tale” campaign was bound to be ended by the Clintons, one way or another.

    He gets attacked, and fights back – so there is going to be a segment of (mainly white / hispanic) voters who no longer see him as the shiny, happy candidate, which is a lot of what he has going for him. The AA vote might shore up around him, as a conscious or unconscious “closing ranks” mentality comes about.

    WE KNOW that Obama has more support among white Democrats nationally than in South Carolina.”

    Some of the low support for Obama is due to Edwards being perceived by white southern Dems as a homeboy. However, that doesn’t explain the relative difference in support between Clinton & Obama.

  108. Wait a second, Cesar, has Clinton not yet tried to work this on the national level, or has she been working to divide black and Hispanic voters nationally?

    And of course she’s been working her campaign on a national level. She’s spent a great deal of the last two weeks outside of South Carolina in order to campaign in Super Tuesday states, leaving Bill in SC in her stead.

    Not to mention, all of the free media about the Democrats for the past two weeks has been about South Carolina, so for the most part, the campaigns they’ve been running there ARE their national campaigns.

  109. What really beats the heck out of me is the divide between the hispanic vote and the african american vote wrt relative support for Clinton and Obama.

    Serious question what do mean by “the Hispanic strategy.”?

    I’m thinking of the Chris Rock routine that starts “ima ‘merican, yeah!” and ends with the punchline “this is where I start paying attention, because next it’s the n****** and the jews.” In other words, a hispanic strategy to try to drive a wedge between (Democratic) hispanics and blacks I would think would backfire.

  110. Kolohe,

    When discussing that turnaround among black voters, remember the “white people will never let a black man win” issue. Obama’s big victory in pasty-white Iowa seems to have gone a long way towards knocking that down.

    Baked Penguin,

    But Obama’s numbers have been RISING nationally, including over the past two weeks.

    But it is an interesting question whether Edwards’ impressive level of support among white Southern voters extends outside of his home state.

  111. I’m thinking of the Chris Rock routine that starts “ima ‘merican, yeah!” and ends with the punchline “this is where I start paying attention, because next it’s the n****** and the jews.” In other words, a hispanic strategy to try to drive a wedge between (Democratic) hispanics and blacks I would think would backfire.

    Local politicians play that game all the time in California and other states from what I understand. And they do it successfully. Its dirty and shameful, but remember we’re talking about Hillary Clinton here.

    Joe-, shes already started yes and it was very successful in Nevada. After a second place finish in SC that she will spin masterfully as “A very close second place finish!” shes going to that plan into over-drive nationally.

  112. Kolohe,

    It is entirely possible that the “cuz I know the…are next” effect only works one way.

    Black voters have shown that they don’t like it when good ole boy minority-bashing is unleashed on groups other than themselves – immigrant-bashing and gay-bashing come to mind – but I don’t know if Hispanics would rebel against the appearance of anti-black politics, or if it would have no effect, or if it would actually work for them.

    I can’t think of any previous examples of races where this dynamic happened.

  113. Joe-, shes already started yes and it was very successful in Nevada.

    OK. Based on Obama’s rising national numbers, it would appear that, if indeed she is doing that, it is either not working, or it is alienating more people than it is winning over.

    Here’s an interesting scenario: Hillary manages to do serious damage to Obama among HIspanics as Cesar theorizes, Obama wins the nomination anyway, and faces John McCain, sponsor of the comprehensive immigration reform bill.

  114. joe

    Re: your 3:17 Yes that what I was trying to say with my last sentence of my 3:09; thanks for saying it better.

  115. Here’s an interesting scenario: Hillary manages to do serious damage to Obama among HIspanics as Cesar theorizes, Obama wins the nomination anyway, and faces John McCain, sponsor of the comprehensive immigration reform bill.

    Joe-, if they Republicans had any brains they’d try to appeal to hispanics by driving a racial wedge between them and blacks. But they’d rather rant about the MexicanGovernment instead.

    Even if McCain is the nominee, the down-ticket people will alienate too many hispanics. The Republican party is stupid, stupid stupid with their nativist strategy the last few years.

  116. Obama’s rising national numbers: I am under the impression that the rate of change has slowed (2nd derivative magnitude decrease) Clinton stills has pretty sizable leads in a bunch of big states. Obama will get a bounce from a win today, but I don’t think it will be enough to close the gap prior to Feb 5.

    But, I thought Dallas would still be playing football, so who knows?

  117. Ask Rudy! about national polls and how much they mean.

  118. That should be second derivative is negative

  119. Cesar,

    It might be a difficult November for racist Latinos.

    I’m not sure if down-ticket candidates actually hurt presidential candidates, though.

  120. Kolohe,

    It’s the same dynamic in every Democratic contest this year; Obama starts out almost 20 points behind a few months out, closes the gap to a single-digit lead with less than two weeks, and then he either closes the deal or he doesn’t.

  121. Cesar
    I think I have told you that my parents live down South in Richmond, and they remind me of one Mayor Rev. Leonidas Young who they say was taking money from parishioners to pay for a penis implant…Does that scandal win?

  122. Ask Rudy! about national polls and how much they mean

    You mean the guy whose national numbers have been steadily trending downward, which has caused him to lose his lead in the one state he’s been campaigning in?

    I’m not sure how that’s relevant, unless you’re comparing him to Hillary.

  123. Joe, I think the way in which the Republican Party has ranted and raved against latinos has screwed them out of any support from that demographic for a decade at least. Meanwhile, in compensation, they’ll recieve the much sought after old conservative white guy vote. Which they had to begin with.

    I think I have told you that my parents live down South in Richmond, and they remind me of one Mayor Rev. Leonidas Young who they say was taking money from parishioners to pay for a penis implant…Does that scandal win?

    Oh God, not that idiot. Yeah, it probably wins.

  124. We once had a City Councilor who refused to resign from his job as a headmaster in the High School after being elected, despite being directed to by the state ethics commission.

    Ummmmmm, the Council gave out towing contracts to bidders who appear to have colluded.

    I think the problem is that the people who get elected in my city are too old to have sex.

  125. joe-
    I don’t put much stock in national polls as opposed to state specific ones. The national ones seem shaped by performances in the specific contests…

    I’m disappointed to see the dynamic in SC, but there you have it. It could be that the whites down there feel compelled towards some ‘racial solidarity/awareness’ due to the black vote so monolithically going Obama (as I called a couple of weeks ago).

    SIV-do you have any proof of what % of SC’s population is recently transplanted from the North are you talking out of your ass?

  126. Subject:
    Black democrats are to the Democratic Party what the Religious Right is to the Republican Party. (monolithic support, charlatan leaders who can command them to turn out in goofily high numbers, both often counted on and then taken advantage of but returning to the flock, and both making demands on the party that ultimately harm the party and thereby get the opposite party in power [which then is of course much worse for their interests]).

    It’s unuanced and I feel slimy just saying it, but there you have it imo…

  127. MNG,

    National polling can be useful for some things, such as assessing whether dynamics are playing out on a national level.

    But if you’re talking about predicting who’s going to win the next state-level contest, you’re absolutely right.

    This year, as both party’s contests seem to be shaping up to a race for delegates to bring to the convention, rather than as a race to see who can get a majority of them a few months before the convention, the national numbers are even less important.

  128. Black democrats are to the Democratic Party what the Religious Right is to the Republican Party.

    I’d amend that to say “black urban politicians are…”. Black democratic politicians in the suburbs are no worse than their white peers. They become corrupt in the cities because urban areas are basically little one-party states.

  129. I think he meant voters, Cesar.

    The Religious Right is a much larger % of Republicans – perhaps a third of all primary voters – than African Americans are – perhaps a fifth? a quarter? – of Democrats.

    Now, who was the last Religious Right candidate to gain substantial backing in the Republican primary from elements of the party establishment?

    Look at how the Republican press has been writing about Huckabee vs. how the Democratic press has been writing about Obama.

  130. Don’t say “Bush.” Bush is a business conservative who can play to the rubes, not an actual Religious Right candidate.

  131. Re SC transplants:

    Per this 39% of SC population was born out of state. Per this 3.5% is foreign born, so about 35% born out of state but in the US. Can’t find yet the mason-dixon division of this 35%.

  132. Joe-

    Easy. Huckabee is to Bush what Jessie Jackson is to Obama. Obama isn’t really an Al Sharpton/Jessie Jackson type black urban politician, but hes close enough to appeal to black voters while still being moderate enough for the establishment.

  133. FWIW, polls breaking down the white Democrat vote in SC show Obama doing best among upper-income voters, Clinton doing best among middle-income voters, and Edwards doing best among lower-income voters. It’s probably safe to say that the population of people born out of state skews towards the upper end.

  134. That doesn’t really work, Cesar.

    Obama is actually a black politician. Dubya is not actually a religious right politician.

  135. uh yes it does

    Obama is actually a half-black politician. Dubya is actually a half-religious right politician.

  136. Obama is actually a black politician.

    Hes black but hes not Al Sharpton “black”, if that makes any sense. What I mean is hes not black politician who is part of some one-party urban political machine.

    Let me put it his way: before he was a national figure I bet he couldn’t win a city council primary race in any given medium sized majority-black city. Any black politician that could wouldn’t seriously be considered by the Dem establishment for a Presidential nominee. (See: Jessie Jackson, Al Sharpton).

  137. Dubya is not a half-religious-right politician.

    Obama actually is African-American.

    Too cute, by “half.”

  138. What I mean is hes not black politician who is part of some one-party urban political machine. Neither are most black voters. A majority of black voters live in the suburbs.

    Before he was a national figure I bet he couldn’t win a city council primary race in any given medium sized majority-black city

    Oh no? Look up Anthony Williams on wikipedia.

    If you’re going to try to compare black – the racial category – voters and politicians to Religious Right – the ideological/cultural category – voters and politicians, you can’t change your argument halfway through to exclude “not really black” voters and politicians.

  139. More importantly, let’s look at what black voters want: universal health care, hate crimes legislation, strong civil rights/voting rights enforcement, anti-poverty programs, redevelopment and economic development programs in troubled cities: the Democrats deliver those things.

    Now, let’s look at what Religious Right voters want: abortion bans, the criminalization of homosexuality, religious instruction in schools, an end to the teaching of evolution: the Republicans, even at the height of their power, provided only symbolic, token victories on these fronts.

    One way to describe this is to say that Democrats pander to their black voters more than Republicans pander to their Theocratic voters. Another way to describe it would be to say that black voters’ agenda and the agenda of the institutional Democratic Party are closely aligned, while the agenda of the Religious Right and the institutional Republican Party are not.

    Either way, the situations are not really the same. And, once again, the Religious Right is a bigger segment of Republican voters and African Americans are of Democratic voters.

  140. I just went to the US Census page and in the 2000 Census 11% of S. Carolina residents said they lived in a different state in 1995.

    http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/DatasetMainPageServlet?_program=DEC&_submenuId=factsheet_1&_lang=en&_ts=

    My point about black Dem voters and the GOP Religious right voters is that both compel their party to take positions which hurt them in the population as a whole, and both often bitch about not getting enough from their party and sometimes threaten to “sit out” or back a 3rd party and screw over the party that tends to favor them (though not as much as they want).

    It’s simplistic of course, but I think there is something there.
    I can think of one big difference though between black democratic voters and religious right GOP voters: one has weird views of the world in large part because of the f*cked up views American society has and does hold about them, the other seems to have freely chosen their weird views…

  141. Dubya is not a half-religious-right politician.

    Obama actually is African-American.

    Too cute, by “half.”

    I think the analogy holds. Bush is a born again christian and takes his religious beliefs very seriously. He obviously promoted it for political gain but that doesn’t mean he’s insincere.

    The same can be said of Obama. He’s promoted his African ancestry for political gain, when he’s also half-white. It doesnt mean he’s not half-black.

    Also the point of the analogy is to represent that Bush and Obama are mainstream figures who can channel support from a small, but powerful voting bloc. Whereas Huckabee and Sharpton/Jackson cannot move beyond that bloc.

  142. Cesar | January 26, 2008, 1:52pm | #
    Heres a subject–whats the most corrupt scandal thats ever taken place in the politics of your city? I just gave mine.

    um… Mayor Daley gets up and goes to work in the morning?

  143. s the g,

    Being a Christian of whatever stripe, and taking those beliefs seriously, does not make on a member of the Religious Right. Jimmy Carter is a born-again Christian who takes his beliefs seriously.

    Once again, there is fuzzy back-and-forth movement between a politicians’ demographic description and a political movement.

    Half-black is not the same thing as whatever “half-religious-right” is supposed to mean.

  144. joe-
    I’m trying to figure out why you so resist the notion that African Americans are in many ways the mirror image of the religious right.

    I agree that the ‘racial identity’ is meaningless, but there is undeniably a strong colleration between that superficial attribute and the idelogical/cultural one. Of course it is not monolithic. But look at congressional districts. The majority of congressional districts with african american candidates are majority african american. This was deliberately done after the ’90 census to get more ‘minority-majority’ districts, specifically for the purpose of increasing the african americans in Congress. Why would they do this if there was no correlation between being a ‘minority’ and voting for one?

  145. I agree that Obama bases his political identity upon some the same political capital as Anthony Williams

  146. I think the problem is that the people who get elected in my city are too old to have sex.

    We don’t have that problem here. Google [Kwame perjury Detroit] for details.

  147. Obama also bases his political identity upon some the same political capital as Harold Ford Jr.

  148. Moose – If you Chicago people get to tell corruption stories, there’s no way anyone else can win. Also, we’ll be here all day.

    joe – where are you getting the figures about the national polls? I looked up the numbers on Rasmussen, and the story seems to be that Obama was really trailing until Iowa, when he nearly caught up. Then Clinton rebounded and has had a lead of 5 – 10% or so (until yesterday).

    I suspect that Edwards’s decline will help Clinton more than Obama. Obama’s “empty-suitedness” and high rhetoric are probably going to be more attractive to the NPR liberal looking for a new JFK than the populist working class voter looking for nuts & bolts & gov’t gravy.

  149. and now that I think about it, pre-Katrina Nagin as well

  150. Could it possibly be, Kolohe, that the theory is simply not true?

    I’ve listed a number of actual arguments, using examples of logic, to explain why I think that. Nobody has even attempted to refute any of them. Is it, maybe, within the realm of possibility that the beloved “the two parties are exactly the same” narrative isn’t always true? Naw, of course not.

    And your observation about a correlation between race and party has nothing to do with the discussion we’ve been having. Yes, African-Americans are a solid voting block for the Democrats the way that the Religious Right is a solid voting block for the Republicans. That wasn’t the question – the question was about the roles those two voting blocks play in their parties.

  151. BakedPenguin,

    I’ve looked at Zogby and PollingReport, which reports a lot of polls. My comment about Obama closing the gap nationally was meant to refer to the past couple of weeks. I’m talking about a tightening that has occurred since Clinton’s post-New Hampshire rebound. As you say, the polls have only started to catch this in the past few days.

  152. It’s this part of MNG’s theory I disagree with: both often counted on and then taken advantage of but returning to the flock Black Democrats actually do command respect from the party leadership, help set the party’s agenda, and are not merely “taken advantage of,” in a way the religious right does not.

  153. joe
    Don’t you think that the positions that each bloc foists on their chosen parties are very harmful to the parties come election day, but that both parties feel they can’t live without em and both blocs are fairly inflexible in refusing support to a candidate to who failes their respective litmus test so the parties cater and run from them at the same time? Think of how affirmative action hurts the Dems, but imagine a Democratic Pres candidate daring to say they are against it! Such a candidate would get about 1% of the black democratic vote regardless of their position on health care and the minimum wage…
    Compare the flexibility of unions in their support for the Dems to the African American bloc…

  154. I think the religious right gets respect, though maybe grudging, from the GOP…

  155. BakedPenguin:

    I’m not sure you’re right about Edwards voters going to Clinton. Let’s look at South Carolina — plenty of populist working class voters there. Obama has been rising in the past month and a half, from 26% to 43%. (These are Pollster numbers.)
    Clinton has been falling, from 39% to 28%. And Edwards is rising slightly, from 13% to 17%.
    So where are those Edwards votes coming from? They’re not former Obama supporters — Obama is surging. So Edwards is poaching off Clinton’s territory. People are dissatisfied with Clinton, and switching to Edwards. If he loses, would they switch back to a candidate they rejected?

    Obama has been painted as the Adlai Stevenson type,

  156. That wasn’t the question – the question was about the roles those two voting blocks play in their parties.

    They both:
    1) provide a solid voting block that will not readily vote for the other team
    2) cannot veto the pick of the parties candidate, but ambivelence will cause them to just stay home and thus the other team will win.
    3) are at odds economically with other core constituencies of their party (Blacks vs Hispanic immigrants, Evangelicals vs Wall Streeters, or for that matter Hispanic immigrants.)

  157. Actually, a lot of evangelicals like Hispanic immigrants because loads of them are converting from Catholicism to evangelical Christianity. This is why Mike Huckabee said things like “nobody is illegal in America” and so on.

  158. alisa – Adlai Stevenson might be a better reference point for Obama than JFK – although I don’t think Obama is seen as being as intellectual as Stevenson was. Nevertheless, Clinton would be the Lyndon Johnson type opposing them – a scheming, lying horse trader, but one who “gets things done”. Edwards would be Huey Long.

    I believe the Edwards & Clinton voters are similar in their voting characteristics for something other than race. Local mileage, as always, will vary.

  159. MNG,

    I agree somewhat with that part. I think both groups have shown themselves willing to turn out regardless of who the nominee is, just to deny the other party victory.

    Kolohe,

    joe | January 26, 2008, 5:08pm | #

    It’s this part of MNG’s theory I disagree with: both often counted on and then taken advantage of but returning to the flock

    Black Democrats actually do command respect from the party leadership, help set the party’s agenda, and are not merely “taken advantage of,” in a way the religious right does not.

  160. Cesar, excellent point at 5:29!

    I hadn’t made that connection to Huckabee’s unRepublican stance on immigration.

  161. alisa,

    I think that, like so much else, the dynamics of an Edwards withdrawal would mean something in the South than in the rest of the country.

  162. Kolohe,

    I don’t think the policy differences between African-Americans and other Democratic factions have much to do with economics.

    I think there is a fairly broad consensus on economic issues across the Democratic Party.

  163. And revisiting your 4:31

    So hate crime legislation is not token symbolic gesture? And I must have missed the Universal health care that the democrats were able to deliver in ’92-’94.

    And as far as what they want that has been delivered: tax cuts, aggressive foreign policy (with a explicitly pro-Israel component), more censorship of naughty language or naughty bits showing on TV, anti-gay marriage (at the state level), their views on birth control as it pertains to foreign aid, and to an extent NCLB.

    And one comment on alignment with the institutional party:
    On immigration African Americans are most closely aligned with the religious than either group is aligned with the institutional party, and the institutional wings of the party are more closely aligned with each other than any other combo.

  164. I did not mean necessarily in their economic views – both partys’ central organizing principles is a a broad general agreement on economic policy and that it is different from the other team. I mean that there personal economic interests are sometimes in conflict with other members of the coalition.

  165. on day i’ll get the their/there/they’re thing write

  166. It’s this part of MNG’s theory I disagree with: both often counted on and then taken advantage of but returning to the flock

    Black Democrats actually do command respect from the party leadership, help set the party’s agenda, and are not merely “taken advantage of,” in a way the religious right does not.

    Colbert had a woman on this week from Mother Jones who was sharply critical of his Sister Soulijah comment, as well as the rhetoric from the last two weeks, but nontheless is still a pretty steadfast supporter. Anecdote, not data, I know, but it’s better than the run-of-the-mill “my black friend said” because she is likely an opinion leader, no?

  167. I was going to say (before I mis-clicked)
    that Obama is a man. He leads among male voters of various incomes. He’s able to deliver emotional rhetoric in a way that would make a woman appear weak. There’s a contingent that’s serious enough about its opposition to Hillary that 33% voted “uncommitted” in Michigan. If she’s seen as a “horse trader,” then there are some who would find a horse trader in a skirt particularly repellent.

    But I do like your Stevenson/LBJ/Long breakdown.

  168. crimethink:

    Though, given two candidates who claim to support awful policies, I’ll take the one who can’t be trusted to implement them over the one who can be trusted to do so…

    This is both awesome and depressing.

    Cesar,

    Is Richmond really as crazy a place as you’re painting it? Maybe I should have accepted my job offer there.

  169. Is Richmond really as crazy a place as you’re painting it? Maybe I should have accepted my job offer there.

    The city is halfway normal. The city government, however, is completely fucked up/corrupt beyond repair/endlessly entertaining.

    I can’t think of any other place where the lead-in on the local news is “THOUSANDS OF PORNOGRAPHIC IMAGES FOND ON CITY COUNCIL COMPUTERS!”

  170. Kolohe,

    So hate crime legislation is not token symbolic gesture? No, the bills that the Democrats have passed have been almost exactly what their African-American faction wanted past. We’re talking about their opinions and interests here, remember. Not yours.

    And I must have missed the Universal health care that the democrats were able to deliver in ’92-’94. The Democrats voted overwhelmingly for that, and when it didn’t pass, created SCHIP. Oh, yeah, SCHIP, whose expansion was supported overwhelmingly by African Americans, which has now passed both housed of Congress twice.

    I think you’ve lost your aim. Let’s recall the premise: More importantly, let’s look at what black voters want: universal health care, hate crimes legislation, strong civil rights/voting rights enforcement, anti-poverty programs, redevelopment and economic development programs in troubled cities: the Democrats deliver those things.

    The Democrats actually fight for the agenda supported by their African-American faction. They deliver when they have the power, and when they are stopped, it is because the Republicans stop them. Not universally, not every single time, but to a much larger degree than the Republicans deliver and fight for the Religious Right.

    tax cuts, aggressive foreign policy (with a explicitly pro-Israel component), more censorship of naughty language or naughty bits showing on TV, those are positions of all Republicans, not positions pushed by the religious right faction

    anti-gay marriage (at the state level), their views on birth control as it pertains to foreign aid Nice qualifiers. That’s what I meant by “symbolic, token gestures They won’t do anything big, but they’ll toss them bones. and to an extent NCLB. Also not a religious-right issue per se.

    Which means I should have left out the bit about health care, because that’s a universal issue for Democrats. Which leaves us with affirmative action (check), urban redevelopment (check), hate crimes legislation (check), strong civil rights/voting rights programs (check) and anti-poverty programs (check).

    On immigration African Americans are most closely aligned with the religious than either group is aligned with the institutional party, and the institutional wings of the party are more closely aligned with each other than any other combo. Yeah, that’s a good point. I’m not sure it’s relevant to this particular discussion, but you’re probably right about that.

  171. Colbert had a woman on this week from Mother Jones who was sharply critical of his Sister Soulijah comment, as well as the rhetoric from the last two weeks, but nontheless is still a pretty steadfast supporter. Anecdote, not data, I know, but it’s better than the run-of-the-mill “my black friend said” because she is likely an opinion leader, no?

    Uh, so?

  172. Also, on respect from party leadership.

    Ralph Reed was the head of the Georgia Republican party for a bit earlier this decade.

    All the republican candidates went to the Value Voters summit, as compare to say those who showed up at Morgan State. (on the other side of the coin, IIRC all the Dems went to their Tavis Smally (sp?) debate, but none went to Foxnews – I may be misremembering details of one or both of these last two)

    I believe that most of any assymetry we see now is that Democrats and their values are politically ascendant while the republicans are declining. Thus it appears their bases have diminished power. Compare now with the late ’90s; the democrats had taken a hit, and african american political influence had dipped. Thus, welfare reform was able to be passed over the objection of the african american base (or at least its notional leadership)

  173. Uh so?

    It is unitary example of someone who was counted on and then taken advantage of but returned to the flock

  174. Ralph Reed was the head of the Georgia Republican party for a bit earlier this decade.

    And Ron Brown was head of the Democratic NATIONAL Committee.

    I’ll agree that the Religious Right hold a commanding position in some Republican state parties.

    All the republican candidates went to the Value Voters summit, as compare to say those who showed up at Morgan State. (on the other side of the coin, IIRC all the Dems went to their Tavis Smally (sp?) debate, but none went to Foxnews – I may be misremembering details of one or both of these last two)

    Fox News is not a Religious Right organization, but a Republican Party organization, close to the leadership. And showing up at debates means nothing, either way. It costs no political capital – in fact, it’s a way to increase one’s political capital with the host-group, without actually doing anything for them.

    I don’t see how any of this helps your argument.

    Now, as for the ascendant/descending idea, and how it relates to internal factions, that’s very interesting. I’ll have to give that some thought. Wouldn’t a hardcore, loyal partisan group see its influence increase in a party that’s shedding people?

  175. It is unitary example of someone who was counted on and then taken advantage of but returned to the flock

    1. It’s an anecdote.

    2. The “Sistah Souljah Moment” was meaningless political theater. On substance, Bill Clinton was the most pro-black president, and the most popular among African-Americans, in 40 years. I don’t think you’ve shown any meaningful betrayal.

  176. The Democrats actually fight for the agenda supported by their African-American faction.

    No disagreement. What I think you overstate is that the African american community is taking *leadership* on stuff like universal health care vice allying with those on which it is the most important issue. Likewise, the religious right provided electoral support for W reelection on staying the course in Iraq, without leading the way.

    The Congressional Black Caucus definitely takes the lead in democratic party on urban issues, with not as a clear counterpart on the religious right. But there’s a broader spectrum of policy options available to appear to be ‘doing something’ about urban issues, than it is right-wing cultural issues

    And you can’t have it both ways wrt hate crimes legislation. Yeah, its not important to me, but neither is it to a majority of democrats. But it is clearly a tools to deliver ‘progress’ to a base.

  177. Yes i said it was an anecdote.

    And political theater is how elections are won and lost

  178. joe-
    good talk, gotta run some errands; i’ll be checking by later

  179. I’ll be drunk later.

  180. I was actually making the opposite point, that black democrats and the religious right often force their parties into unpopular positions with the general public, and they are two of the more inflexible blocs that do this.

    If a Dem presidential candidate came out against affirmative action they would instantly recieve very little black votes. This would be so even if they took a position on health care, the minimum wage, Iraq, etc., that was popular with black democrats. There are certain positions that black democrats hold sancrosanct and they will not only NOT vote for such a candidate, they will often fanatically (or threaten to) torpedo such a candidate if they get to be the nominee. I’m thinking of Doug Wilder talking about running against Owen Pickett for Senate in VA if the Dems chose Owen Pickett as their candidate (this resulted in the Dems capitulating and choosing a less powerful candidate who then lost to a Republican who was far worse than Owen Pickett would have been in the eyes of civil rights organizations), or the threats to torpedo Cardin in Maryland because the party did not do enough for Mfume (who wold have been a disasterous candidate in the general election).

    The religious right is much the same way (look at their threats to form a third party if the GOP dare nominate a pro-choice candidate)

  181. I was actually making the opposite point, that black democrats and the religious right often force their parties into unpopular positions with the general public, and they are two of the more inflexible blocs that do this.

    Agreed Mr. Niceguy.

  182. Again compare to unions. If a Dem candidate said they were against a striker replacement ban they would certainly not automatically lose the support of unions…

    I’m not necessarily trying to disparage the black voting bloc within the Democratic party. You might say that unions are a better team player and more flexible. Or you might say that they are too “well behaved” and don’t tie their bloc to unconditional support of something important to them…

    But I imagine the GOP and Dem party heads probably think of the religious right and the civil rights establishment as that grandmother who won’t come to family functions unless her conditions are met, all else be damned, but without whom they cannot have the function…

  183. I would also note that such monolithic voting blocs may be more vunerable to charlatans (look at hucksters like Jackson, Sharpton, etc. in relation to the civil rights establishment and Robertson, Falwell, etc. for the religious right)

    Again, I think such bloc voting (and the related peril of being hoodwinked by some unscrupulous leader) are typical of blocs formed by people who are relatively lacking in power and influence. But the cause of this among the religious right strikes me as the embracing of a credulous workdview in life in general…The lack of critical thinking that leads one to think God created aids to punish gays can also prevent one from seeing the rather obvious (to others) hucksterism in a crooked leader…

  184. Dear Sir/Madam (minus The Posh English ‘Hugh Grant’ Voice You Stereotype Us With!)

    I have been following your politics for a couple of years now as to be quite frank its more interesting that English politics as it is more corrupt. (no offence) or should i say equally as corrupt but the difference is our primeministers at least come across as slightly intelligent. To vote someone in like President Bush there must be something seriously wrong with people. Me and my family have good laughs at him on youtube. surely people can see through that guy. Now im not the most intellectual guy in the world as you can probably tell by my spelling!

    But the only genuine guy in your presedential race must be Ron Paul. I Dont care if its a cool thing or the done thing to say these days because its rebellious to support him and seems like a revolution.

    In the last year or so i have realised how the media control us. I watch the news from the moment i open my eyes in the morning and i believe what they say because deep down i used to think ‘Why would they lie to us?’ but when you get deep down to the nitty gritty (English phrase sorry!) There are lots of reasons why. Now I have introduced my wife to the presedential race in your country and even she thinks the exclusion of Ron Paul is strange. She Said ‘Its funny and childish. Like a kid a kid who doesn’t want the popular kid at school to get attention’. Now i found that funny. But this is your country and you are turning into a laughing stock. Other countries report on Dr Paul but you don’t. Does that tell you something?
    Im just saying from an outside view he is the only one who is genuine and is not lying to you.

    It is written over his face (The Truth)

    I see the other candidates in debates and im sorry to say you country needs help if they vote for any of them because they look, act and come across as liars at the worst. At The best they are trained Hollywood Actors.

    From this side of the pond I have spoken to many people and they say your elections are like a gameshow. I tell them how it is and your country has been manipulted. We all believe what we see on TV.

    Im from London.

    People think about 7/7 and are scared of terrorists but i explain things to them. They were doing training excersises that day at the same stations at the same time (same as 9/11) and they are shocked. Same stations at the same time? Come on>? Thats in the billions to One!!!

    Our governments think we are stupid.

    I have woken my family and people around me to the truth.

    The funny thing is when people see the facts they know the truth.

    Truth is reality.

    Good Bless England And America.x

  185. We had the House Minority leader charged with felony sexual assault, groping a woman on a plane.

    Another male rep was caught soliciting a male undercover police officer in a public restroom (actually asking for sex, not just a wide stance).

    We’ve had numerous politicians jailed for extortion, drunk driving, you name it.

    We’re not quite New Orleans here in Hawaii, but plenty to keep the reporters hopping — and these are just the ones who got caught.

  186. “I lived in Macon for two years right at the turn of the century. Boortz was the second most popular radio show of any type in the Atlanta market (limbaugh was first), so his influence is substantial. Also, Boortz has afaik always called himself a libertarian.”

    Small world. I was in Macon around that same time (mid-96 to early-99) and have been in Atlanta ever since. You are 100% correct that Boortz has substantial influence (more so in Atlanta) and has always called himself a libertarian but David stated as much in the original post so that doesn’t really answer my question. The question was…

    “…on what are you basing your assertion that libertarians have fared well in Georgia ‘thanks in part to the influence of radio icon Neal Boortz’?”

    The assumption is reasonable (especially if you haven’t been listening to him since 9/11) but, as I’ve said in past comments, my experience in Georgia is quite different. The vast majority of Boortz listeners are Republicans and identify with him quite well. They are fiscally conservative, pro-Iraq war and, while some of them may now call themselves “libertarian” because of Boortz, they still vote Republican religiously. But Boortz’s real negative effect is that his popularity allows him to turn off many would-be libertarians that think his views align with the LP platform. Based on your comment, I bet you’d be surprised at the number of people who think libertarians are pro-empire for no other reason than it is Boortz’s position. In fact, I’m surprised you don’t remember the controversy that arose when Boortz was allowed to speak at the 2004 convention.

    Boortz is not only enthusiastically pro-war, he won’t even allow a rational discussion on the issue. He thinks the FBI has every right to surveil and investigate anti-war demonstrators and his most recent degradation of the word “libertarian” was to openly endorse Mike Huckabee (maybe one of the reasons Huck is polling so high here).

    Based on my experiences, he does a great deal more damage to libertarian rep than he does good. The number of pro-war Republicans he gets to vote “L” is severely outweighed by the number of people he scares away.

    Colbert writers disturb Congress (and one shouts “Ron Paul for President”).

  187. Actually Franklin, the “Pro-Empire” position is held by the Anti-War Libertarians. They are Pro-Empire, only Pro-Islamo-Fascist Empire. They support the establishment of a Muslim Caliphate across the Sahara from Morocco to Persia, but also to include Southern Spain, parts of Italy and the Balkans.

    They are also fine with growing Radical Muslim influence throughout Europe and even Canada and the United States.

    So, if you are a Pro-Islamo-Fascist, by opposing the War on Terror, you should call yourself “Pro-Empire.”

  188. Eric,

    Where do these growing Islamists get their recruits?

    Why is Osama bin Laden able to rally so many more people to his banner than the founder of the Aryan nations is?

    I’ll give you a hint. When the founder of the Aryan Nations says that “the Jews are looting the White Race” most people look around and laugh and only a few deluded souls believe them.

    On the other hand, when Osama Bin Laden says “the Christian Crusaders are oppressing us”, he gets a lot more traction because sane people look around and notice that the U.S. government is bankrolling the repressive Egyptian, Pakistani and Saudi governments, supporting the Iranian shah, and then when he got the boot supporting Saddam Hussein, and then bombing the shit to of the Iraqi people after he turned on the U.S. government.

    So instead of only the wackaloons rallying to his banner, the sane people start rallying too since what he is claiming is actually matching reality on many points.

    Or, as some British-educated Muslim cleric once pointed out in an editorial, “George Bush is Osama Bin Laden’s top recruiting sargeant.”

    Note, the Aryan Nations, who for the longest time wanted to overthrow the U.S. government and purge the US of those pesky jews, has been markedly unsuccessful. At this point the only thing that keeps them going are the large number of prisoners in the gang and their drug running operations. In order to attract competent membership they had to focus on things like making money and running protection rackets and to give up their dream of a white, christian, anti-zionist nation.

    The U.S. government isn’t sending B-1 bombers to bomb the shit out of Idaho. It isn’t rounding up the membership of Stormfront and waterboarding them. Yet despite the fact that the Aryan Nations are big, well-organized, have murdered hundreds of people in the U.S, what you would characterize as the U.S. government ignoring the threat posed by the posed by the Aryan nations has not resulted in the slaughter of Jews and Blacks in the U.S. It hasn’t resulted in the overthrow of the U.S. government.

    So, Mr Dondero, it’s you and your ideological companions, the faux-libertarians who believe that it is moral to kill people solely because of of their religion or ethnicity, that collective punishment is a just thing, are the guys who are driving people to support Al Queda. It is you who are making Al Queda’s ‘imperial’ ambitions possible.

    So again, Mr Dondero, even by your own criteria, it is you who is pro-empire, not us.

  189. Funny how you blame our foreign policy on Muslim hatred for the US, and not our cultural values.

    I’ve been to the Middle East. Spent 9 months of my life in Bahrain and Djibouti. I speak basic Arabic. They hate us for who we are. If you believe the crap that Leftwing America-haters spew, that they hate us for our foreign policy, you are an absolute idiot.

    Leftwingers have a stake in the War in Iraq. The War cannot be won, or else they look like huge losers. So, of course, they want to blame our foreign policy. They can’t risk the truth, that it has to do with Gays, Britney Spears, Baywatch, HBO, Hollywood movies, and Hip Hop.

    Doubt this? Go to Europe. See how Radical Muslims are throwing stones at Gay lovers walking down the streets of Amsterdam holding hands. Watch them burn down Newspaper offices who published cartoons critical of Islam. Watch them burn down hundreds of cars a night on the Streets of Paris.

    Last time I checked those “crazy” Dutch and French weren’t intervening in Middle Eastern countries. So, why the Muslim animosity expressed towards them?

    Answer: Culture.

  190. The only “faux libertarians” around are those who claim to support liberty, yet turn a blind eye to Radical Muslim oppression of Dutch libertarians like Geert Wilders and Ayaan Hirsi Ali.

    If you’re a real libertarian you’ll stand up and fight against the forces of Naziism who want to murder Geert and Ayaan.

    All for the crime of standing up for free speech rights. And the American libertairan movement stays silent.

  191. Eric,

    You collosal moron. You live in the fucking bible belt. You work among people who are complaining constantly about how the liberals with their permissive society are destroting this country. Guys who claim that Britney Spears is corrupting our youth and support laws against adultery, bans on birth control and the such.

    Yet somehow all of these people who are offended by U.S. cultural exports of sex, women’s rights and the like somehow (with the exception of a few guys like Eric Rudolph) aren’t conducting terrorist attacks.

    If it was U.S. cultural exports that was the problem, Al Queda would be the least of our worries, it would be the crusaders coming north from Orlando’s suburbs who would be the problem (once they finished destroying Disney World that is)

    Again, Al Queda and the radical clerics, just like the founder of Aryan nations are dangerous crazy bastards.

    Every society has them. The question is, how do you limit the damage they can do. Following their apocalyptic script, doing the things to innocent people that they accuse you of doing is a great way to help them recruit followers.

    I’ve been to the Middle East. Spent 9 months of my life in Bahrain and Djibouti. I speak basic Arabic. They hate us for who we are. If you believe the crap that Leftwing America-haters spew, that they hate us for our foreign policy, you are an absolute idiot.

    Wow the moron who thinks the WMD’s were shipped to Syria, the guy who claims Al Queda has the capability to sneak Scud missiles into Mexico is calling me an idiot. Ouch.

    Hey moron, I am middle eastern, and I served in the U.S. Navy too where I deployed to Persian gulf. If you had managed to avoid your trait for picking fights and acting like an “ugly American” you might have actually learned a few things there. Knowing you, you were too busy getting drunk and chasing tail to pay any attention to what was going around you.

    The source of anti-americanism is caused by the U.S. governments support for Iran’s shah, Saudi Arabia’s king, Israel, Saddam Hussein, then our starvation blockade on Iraq when we opposed Saddam Hussein, Pakistan’s dictator, Indonesia’s Suharto, the Moroccan rulers etc ad nauseam. These guys live in societies with secret police, secret prisons, the risk of being picked up and tortured at the drip of a hat, and they know whose paying for it.

    When the local government that is arresting your relatives and is torturing them is bankrolled by the U.S. and its allies, guess what? People are going to get a little bit resentful at the financiers.

    And, by the way, the French do intervene in the Middle East. There’s this place called Algeria…

    The problems in Europe with the radical islamists is quite simple – they have a huge welfare state and they have employment laws that guarantee a huge unemployed population. So you have guys who have enough money to survive and not many prospects of improving their lot, with lots of time on their hands. Couple that with a culture where everyone is trained to sit and wait for the big government to save them, and the results are quite predictable.

    You want to fight radical Islam in France, go out there and agitate for economic liberalization.

    Finance the guys translating Mises into Arabic.

    As to libertarians staying silent. Ha!. There’s enough straw in that statement to feed an entire herd through the winter.

    Eric, the way you fight the crazy people is by punishing them (and only them!) for the their acts while persuading potential supporters not to rally for their cause.

    You seem to think that unless I am calling for Mk-82’s to be dropped on their houses, I am supporting them. That is not the case. Your methods of fighting them not only don’t work, but they actually strengthen the radical islamists’ hands.

    I am sure Osama Bin Laden is grateful for your support. The longer the U.S. government fights him using the tactics you support, the more powerful he gets. He barely could afford the Keny attacks; his middlemanagement were ready to quit because they hadn’t been paid in months. Bill Clinton’s bombardment of Milk factories in the Sudan in retaliation really helped him out. Keep it up, and I ‘m sure that in a decade or so Al Queda will have those Scud missiles in Mexico that you were wetting your pants over.

    Anyway, I’m done. I have work to do. I just wish you would recognize that you are a moron and stop trying to lecture people about matters that require intelligence. I don’t tell baseball players how to hit because it would be a waste of their and my time. Similarly you should stick to whatever your core competency is because all you are doing is making youself an increasingly bigger laughing stock.

  192. Wow the moron who thinks the WMD’s were shipped to Syria, the guy who claims Al Queda has the capability to sneak Scud missiles into Mexico is calling me an idiot. Ouch.

    tarran,
    Dondi called me insane a month or three ago. I use that as indiputable evidence of my metal stabilty, and rational thought processes. You now have a clincher of a rebuttal if anyone questions your mental acumen.

    “Oh yeah, Eric Dondero called me an idiot!” Solid evidence of intellectual prowess, I’d say.

  193. I use that as indiputable evidence of my metal stabilty

    J sub D — I’ve been saying for some time that you have metal stability, that you’re really an android like the Mittster, and no one believed me. Thanks for finally coming clean.

    Not quite as good as Ali’s ass thing, and on a dead thread to boot, but comedy gold … 😉

  194. prolefeed- You call my name, and I am obliged to show up.

  195. Is it now the infamous “Ali’s Ass” thread? Cool, I am continuing the legacy of “Ali Baba”.

  196. Hey Dondero, hows Giuliani doing?

  197. Cesar- Be patient, wait two more days and not getting an answer for that question will be way more delicious. Mmmmmmm…. I can’t wait!

  198. Franklin-
    I left macon in aug 2002, so the war drums for iraq were still just a few riffs on the high hat. And do mean the 2004 Rep or LP convention? I didn’t really pay attention to either one as the former was uncontested, and I believe the latter was a resurgence of the Harry Browners looking to continue the use of the LP as their own personal jobs program. (but I could be mixing the LP one with 2000)

    I see what you mean based on what you telling me regarding Boortz’s Iraq war position. I think my process was right “I like Neil Boortz, thus I will follow his recommendations” but I had the initial conditions wrong. And I think he’s been on the fair tax bandwagon since the late 90’s, so that is probably why he’s a Hucakabee supporter. And so Boortz will probably generate support for Huckabee outside the ‘jesus uber alles’ wing (which like SC, is I believe at least 50%) of the Georgia Republican party.

  199. Oh yeah, Dondero:

    The Dutch intervened in the largest Muslim country in the world for 300+ years. Its called “Indonesia”. Moron.

  200. Oh, and in addtion to the French in Algeria, they also had colonies in:

    Morocco
    Tunisia
    Syria
    Lebanon
    Senegal
    Just about all of West Africa sans Nigeria

    And they’re all Muslim countries. You know, Dondi, if they had been smart enough to mind their own business instead of setting up colonies all over the Muslim world they wouldn’t have any immigration from those same countries now.

    Whats ironic about all of this is, thanks to your pal Bush, we’re going to end up getting thousands of Iraqi refugees because we’re responsible for turning their country into a bombed-out hell hole. You don’t like Muslim immigrants, but the very policies you advocate will probably end up bringing Muslim immigrants here. God, you’re an idiot!

  201. … God, you’re an idiot!

    In other news, the sky is blue, ice floats, and Betty Grable had great legs.

  202. Seriously though, how come Dondero never makes this connection?

    When you get involved militarily or politically in a foreign country, you usually end up having quite a few immigrants from said country.

    Its no accident some of the biggest immigrant groups are Fillipinos, Koreans, Hmong, and Vietnamese.

  203. Eric Dondero | January 27, 2008, 8:24am | #

    Actually Franklin, the “Pro-Empire” position is held by the Anti-War Libertarians. They are Pro-Empire, only Pro-Islamo-Fascist Empire. They support the establishment of a Muslim Caliphate across the Sahara from Morocco to Persia, but also to include Southern Spain, parts of Italy and the Balkans.

    If you don’t support Eric’s Big Government plan to stop X, that means you actively support X. Oh, and Eric is not only a libertarian, but a better libertarian than you.

  204. If you don’t support Eric’s Big Government counterproductive plan to stop X, that means you actively support X. Oh, and Eric is not only a libertarian, but a better libertarian than you.

    You forgot a word, joe.

    For those of you who don’t believe in non-interventionism for philosophical reasons, can you at least consider it for pragmatic reasons?

  205. Say what you will, we’re down to four candidates out of eleven for the Rep nomination and Paul is among ’em. For those of you preoccupied with trying minimalize Paul, thank you. In so doing you have aptly drawn attention to him on the net. It should be abundantly clear that he will be around for awhile, the whole time gathering strength… how much strength remains to be seen. Huckabee is a nice guy, but his pro-war stance will be his un-doing. Besides, he’s on fumes. BTW, NOBODY won any delegates in Florida. You knew that, right?

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