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What in the hell is going on in Clintonland?

This is just getting weird, isn't it? To me, it really seems like the Clinton camp is embracing racially charged language in its attacks on Obama. Why is that? It seems to contradict what Clinton stands for (except maybe when she was campaigning for Barry Goldwater at 17). She - and her husband - should be better than that.

Here's the latest. A "Clinton advisor," as quoted in the Guardian:

If you have a social need, you're with Hillary. If you want Obama to be your imaginary hip black friend and you're young and you have no social needs, then he's cool.

Do they hate Obama that much for running against her? So blinded by that rage that they think it's ok to embrace the kind of tactics that have paid such dividends for the Republican party over the years?

You probably find it hard to believe. So do I. But the evidence is becoming compelling. Bill Clinton calling Obama a "kid." Dismissing his media image as a "fairy tale." And don't forget this from Senator Clinton on January 7:

I would point to the fact that Dr. King's dream began to be realized when President Lyndon Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, when he was able to get through Congress something that President Kennedy was hopeful to do, the president before had not even tried, but it took a president to get it done.

Their supporters are getting in on it, too. Here's a good one from New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, a Clinton surrogate:

It's not a TV crazed race. Frankly you can't buy your way into it ... You can't shuck and jive at a press conference.

I don't like that, either, and I'm not the only one. Here's Clinton ally Donna Brazile on the comments by President Clinton:

For him to go after Obama, using a 'fairy tale,' calling him as he did last week, it's an insult. And I will tell you, as an African-American, I find his tone and his words to be very depressing

And here's James E. Clyburn (D-SC), the highest-ranking African-American in Congress, who has to date remained neutral in the primary race:

We have to be very, very careful about how we speak about that era in American politics ... It is one thing to run a campaign and be respectful of everyone's motives and actions, and it is something else to denigrate those. That bothered me a great deal.

And don't forget the Clinton campaign's reference to Obama's teenage drug use, and suggestion that maybe he actually dealt drugs, too (don't all black youth?). Maybe it's desperation, maybe it's coldly calculated. Or maybe it's nothing - just people like me over reacting in support of our candidate. But I'm having trouble believing that the Clintons, with their decades of experience at the top of Democratic politics, don't know what they're doing by sprinkling a little race-baiting rhetoric on the primaries.



i suppose that's the way the game is played, or rather, a small taste of the general election if Obama is the nominee.

btw great op ed in NY Time today

United We Fall


Krugman dings Obama again.

On the Democratic side, John Edwards, although never the front-runner, has been driving his party’s policy agenda. He’s done it again on economic stimulus: last month, before the economic consensus turned as negative as it now has, he proposed a stimulus package including aid to unemployed workers, aid to cash-strapped state and local governments, public investment in alternative energy, and other measures.


The Obama campaign’s initial response to the latest wave of bad economic news was, I’m sorry to say, disreputable: Mr. Obama’s top economic adviser claimed that the long-term tax-cut plan the candidate announced months ago is just what we need to keep the slump from “morphing into a drastic decline in consumer spending.” Hmm: claiming that the candidate is all-seeing, and that a tax cut originally proposed for other reasons is also a recession-fighting measure — doesn’t that sound familiar?

Anyway, on Sunday Mr. Obama came out with a real stimulus plan. As was the case with his health care plan, which fell short of universal coverage, his stimulus proposal is similar to those of the other Democratic candidates, but tilted to the right.

For example, the Obama plan appears to contain none of the alternative energy initiatives that are in both the Edwards and Clinton proposals, and emphasizes across-the-board tax cuts over both aid to the hardest-hit families and help for state and local governments. I know that Mr. Obama’s supporters hate to hear this, but he really is less progressive than his rivals on matters of domestic policy.


I can't deny that I find Krugman to be very persuasive. His critiques of Obama reinforce my comments earlier about Obama, that he's appropriating right wing soundbites to try to appeal to everyone and that his candidacy fits very well with the republican play book of campaigning on social issues but then focusing on economic policy, to the detriment of the middle classes.

Obama knows who he is and where's he from, but does he know where's he going? From what I've seen and read, it's back to corporate Clintonomics.

The Clintons? Engage in morally reprehensible tactics to acheive their goals? Did you forget about Rickey Ray Rector, the guy Clinton executed during the primary season? The Clintons? Using the issue of race in a cynical way? Shocked, I'm shocked

Rector's prison guards called him "the Chickman" because he thought the guards were throwing alligators and chickens into his cell. He would grip the bars and jump up and down like an ape. On the night of his execution, Rector saved the slice of pecan pie to be eaten before bedtime, not realizing his death would come first. He also told his attorney that he would like to vote for Clinton in the fall.


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