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Friday: Foibles

It hasn’t been a good week for Barack Obama. He really needed momentum coming off of his humiliating defeat in Pennsylvania and it looked like he was starting to pick up a little speed again, testing the waters, ready to roll out another race baiting scheme with the help of James Clyburn, who was shocked, SHOCKED by what he’d heard about Bill Clinton. Er, actually, even that one was starting to backfire a bit. It was becoming an obvious pattern and Clyburn was hamming it up. Then Wright the Sequel, hit with blockbuster appeal. Every “journalist” was suddenly transfixed by his appearance at the National Press Club where he reduced our transcendent agent of change to just another cynical, narcissistic politician.

There’s probably a lesson in all of this but I doubt that Obama has time to learn it. The latest polls are showing him struggling, like this post from CNN Political Ticker suggests, . CNN poll: Obama losing Support.

Didn’t Wright know there were more primaries coming up? Well, it’s not like the Big Boyz of the Obama Fan Base aren’t trying to make any more primaries irrelevant but Obama still has to go through the pro forma motions before he is officially handed the crown in Denver. Anyway, the whole kerfuffle was distracting and messed with his timing, That’s probably why his appearance on Letterman last night to deliver, Obama’s Top Ten Surprises went over like a lead balloon.

This morning, it looks like the bad luck just keeps on rolling our Change Agent’s way because in Party of Denial, Paul Krugman critiques his disastrous appearance on Fox that started this bad week off last Sunday. That’s where Obama said that Republicans have some good ideas about deregulation. HAHAHAHAHA!!! Tell that to anyone who has had to rely on the FDA in the past eight years. Or how about the people who are losing their homes to predatory lenders because the Feds didn’t regulate the mortgage market that devised “instruments” to gamble away billions of dollars in speculation. Or the people who live downwind of the coal power plants who only need to volunteer to reduce emissions with scrubbers. Or… what?…I’m getting off topic? Sorry.

But Barack doesn’t have to worry too much because the math is still on his side and his Big Boyz are still doing a Haka, laughing and jeering that it is a mathematical impossibility for Hillary to catch up. They sound a little unhinged these days though since they are running out of time and their hero just can’t close the deal. And now, here comes Anglachel, who does some New Math and shows her work. She’s putting the pieces together and concludes that the ugly business of MI and FL is a no-go. Howard has to settle it for Barry to win and at this point in time, it’s not looking good.

Thank God it’s almost over and Barry can put this week behind him. I mean, what more can possibly go wrong? After this, it’ll be a piece of cake, smooooth sailing right on through the weekend – right after his campaign straightens out the literature that went out to all the mail-in voters in Oregan that reminds them of how Obama intends to work for the veterans of Pennsylvania and protect the sparkling waters of the Great Lakes. Bobbanks at MyDD tells us all about it in Change Oregan Can Believe In? but I’m sure it’s just an oversight (*giggle, snort*)

There, there, Barry, don’t cry.

Update: The Indianapolis Star, the state’s largest newspaper, endorses Hillary Clinton. The weekend seems to be getting off to a rocky start for Barry. Maybe he should consider packing it in.

51 Responses

  1. Anglachel makes good points. FL and MI will need to be dealt sooner or later or as s/he mentions they will go GOP.

    The math thing is ridiculous in my opinion and can be manipulated to fit the claims to legitimacy of either candidate.

    Question: With the Wright issue “subsiding” is there any chance BO can regain his mega-super-duper momentum in NC? Any experts in crystal ball reading out there?

  2. As for Mr Krugman…we all know he is “evil” (he sounds too smart and makes too much sense to be trusted).

    Now, regarding the need to look beyond costs and free market forces and focus on coverage denial I agree with him:

    “Now Mr. McCain has admitted that maybe a government program is needed for those who can’t get private insurance. This appears to be a response to criticism from Elizabeth Edwards, who has been pointing out that deregulated insurers would deny coverage to anyone with, say, a history of cancer — a category that includes both her and Mr. McCain himself. But the way Mrs. Edwards has rattled the McCain campaign is evidence of just how vulnerable he is on the issue.”


  3. Now THIS is the way I like to start my weekends…a day early with a Krugman reality check via riverdaughter while a glorious sunrise over the Cascades bathes the bay in golden amber.

    Good morning!

  4. @Upstate: Question: With the Wright issue “subsiding” is there any chance BO can regain his mega-super-duper momentum in NC?

    Never say never. The media is largely ignoring the fallout from Wright and how it’ll devastate him in the GE; meanwhile they show Clinton as someone who must quit. The ABC News site claims Clinton is “trying” the patience of “Democrats” (I wonder which ones) while Obama is picking up steam (Andrews).

    I definitely think he won’t be hurt in IN and NC as much as he should be simply because they’re refusing to talk about it.

  5. I watched David Gregory on MSNBC last evening. They spent almost an hour talking about how the Wright fiasco was over. I thought their premise was operationally falsified.

  6. @Get Real: BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

  7. I love Paul Krugman, but I disagree with him on one point. I think Clinton’s gas tax position is a nice piece of political ju jitsu. I steals the ground out from under McCain, and hopefully ensures that if his idea is passed she’s prevented the harm the revenue loss would cause.

    More, though, she’s put into public discussion the fact that the Republican’s cut-taxes-at-all-costs philosophy undermines programs that people really rely for our economic health and safety. You only get what you pay for, and if you’re not willing to pay taxes up front, you’ll pay with unsafe roads, tainted human and pet foods and drugs that do more harm than help.

    Or as I like to put it, roads aren’t fixed at night by magic elves.

  8. OK… Obama’s slipping a bit. Hillary’s not moving up or down. So my question is: Why can’t she close the deal? She’s been handed a golden egg, so to speak, and still she can’t get it done. She was supposed to win by 20 something points in PA – only won by half that. She was supposed to run away with the nomination. A dream…. Hillary’s fondest, aside from dying in her own arms. I’m very happy that Obama still is staying ahead of her. She’s the past and he’s the future. She’s got ‘all that baggage that people have been rummaging through’ for years. Do you think that’ll stop if she becomes President? We’ll have a continuation of the past 16 years. And, what many pundits are choosing not to raise an issue about, her attitude toward working class white people is: ‘screw ’em’ – her words in 1995.

  9. Folks, we’ve got incoming today. They might be coming from Slate. Try to be nice and ignore the worst offenders. Rude and Obnoxious comments will be removed. REALLY rude ones will be tossed in the spam filter. Polite Obama supporters are welcome.

  10. According to Gallup 76% of Obama supporters and 43% of Clinton supporters believe the extended primary is hurting the party. I think it is a safe assumption that the 43% of Clinton supporters who believe the extended campaign is hurting the party do not want her to quit. There was a 13 point jump from March to April in Obama supporters who see it as a bad thing while Clinton supporters had a 5 point decrease in the same time span.

    The CNN article also talked about a trend in decreasing “enthusiasm” for both candidates within the party. I have no idea why the article did not report any January #’s for Obama but here they are; 45/38/33 for Clinton and 45/36 for Obama. I have changed my perspective on the whole situation a bit. I used to think that intra-party candidate bashing was causing most of the problems. Now I kind of think Democrats are fucked in November no matter what choice we (super delegates!) make.

    Did anybody see Howard Dean on Jon Stewart last night? He seemed really confused. He basically did not explain anything while Stewart prodded him for answers (asking him how the Democrats were going to win without MI/FL). I cannot really recommend it because it was pretty boring (9 minutes). It is getting harder and harder for me to imagine a scenario where either candidate wins in the GE this November. Hopefully I am just a bit down because I have a couple finals today and well; I have always been imaginationally challenged. Bleh. I guess for clarity’s sake I ought to say that May could tell a different story than April so I really feel this current super delegate push is, well, just insert whatever negative adjective you prefer [here]. It would probably apply. I just cannot help thinking that the situation will deteriorate no matter what road is taken.

  11. Anyone who lumps George W. Bush’s administration in with Bill Clinton’s administration clearly wasn’t sentient during Bill Clinton’s administration.

    The children must have the day off from school, riverdaughter.

  12. New Indiana Downs Center poll: Clinton up 7 (a flip from their last poll)

  13. I agree with sister of ye on the gas tax.

    Hillary knows what she’s doing with this proposal.

  14. Great Summary, this helps me start my day.

    I have 2 points I need to make:

    1- Good Riverdaughter:

    He really needed momentum coming off of his humiliating defeat in Pennsylvania and it looked like he was starting to pick up a little speed again”

    Just the part in bold is enough to keep me off my pain medication, which I ‘ll probably end up selling to Rush Limbaugh. The hospital gave me tons of it.

    2- Bad riverdaughter:

    They sound a little shrill these days though since they are running out of time and their hero just can’t close the deal.”

    Shrill? Didn’t you mean unhinge?

    To be called Shrill is a privilege. Shrill is for people who tell the truth and are reviled by their peers. That’s why Paul Krugman is The Shrill One, that’s why Corrente is the Shrillest blog on the internets, that’s why Sugar is Shrill, pretty much the entire Progressive Blogosphere 2.0 is Shrill.

    You committed a capital offense by calling these faux progressives Shrill, but you have one major mitigating factor: You are “The” Conflucian par excellence. That’s why you’ll only have to read
    Wherefore The Shrillblog to avoid such mistakes in the future.

  15. Any working American who stops to fill a gas tank during the summer months would leap for an opportunity to save nearly 20 cents a gallon.

    When they see earnings from the oil companies at record levels and their dollars now needing to stretch further for food and utilities as well 20 cents is 20 cents. What are they drinking in DC and in the media?

  16. Try telling someone making 12.00 an hour that a break on the gas tax is not a relief. At 4.00 a gallon (it is almost that amount here in MA as of yesterday) it comes down to the difference of putting gas in the car just to get to work or skimping on food. For those in the higher up brackets it may be a pinch but one they can sustain. I am not concerned about the political side to this proposal but there a lot of people out here hurting. A small break is most welcome.

  17. Oh, and lies will also get you deleted. I’m talking to you petroman. We don’t disseminate Obama or right wing memes here.

  18. MABLue: Hope you’re feeling better soon. I made the correction you recommended. Mea Culpa.

  19. Riverdaughter,

    Great post! That Oregon thing is hilarious. What the heck is Obama doing with all that money he’s rolling in? And if he’s so “youthful,” why is he making fewer than half the appearances Hillary makes. Plus he’s looking tired, pale, and wan, and Hillary looks fantastic and full of energy.

    Anyone who thinks the Rev. Wright “controversy” is over is delusional. And today the WSJ has a column on Ayers and Dohrn and the “warm” relationship Obama has had with them for years. Until I read that, I didn’t know that Obama had announced his Senate candidacy on the front steps of Ayers house, did you? Something tells me the Republicans are not going to ignore all this.

  20. Believe Oregon, believe! Praise ThePrecious and pass the ammo to PA veterans.

  21. BB: He announced his senate run on the steps of the Ayers’ House??? How the heck did *that* slip by? Manomanoman. The hits just keep on comin’.

  22. DCDemocrat: “spent almost an hour talking about how the Wright fiasco was over.” LOL

    Uh, let’s see – Timmeh will likely gloss right over it on Sunday’s MTP. 😉

  23. wow: thats interesting….

    I just posted a couple comments about ten comments in on a kos diary and he actually deleted his OWN diary rather than expose my contrary comments including electoral polling…

    I think its time to help me let a little daylight in over there, guys…


  24. ufa: When Oregonians hear that they live by the shining big sea waters, they probably don’t know that refers to the shores of Gitche Gumee .
    It’s a mistake anyone could have made.

  25. RD: Notice how the number of “hits” has risen substantially in the last few days. Got a feeling that Vanity Fair article is bringing more newbies to the site.

  26. Pat: We are averaging about 8000 hits/day. At this rate, we should break 400K by Sunday. While we’ll never be the size of Kos, it *is* kinda surprising that we managed to get any attention at all in this little, remote corner of the blogoverse. I wonder if he regrets disowning some of us now…

  27. Goodness, what an amazing post! Krugman is great. I disagree with him on the gas tax, but he’s looking at it long-term instead of short-term. As an economist, he’s entitled to do that. 🙂

    I had to choke on my coffee when I saw Obama’s whoppers in Oregon. This is the guy who people think is running a great campaign? Who wants to stop the mindless sloganeering and talk about the issues? LOL!

    Obama is being aided and abetted by a corporate media who desperately wants this 95-pound weakling to run against their 105-pound candidate, John McCain.

    Meanwhile, HRC is the 800-pound gorilla who will crush McCain in all the states we need to win the White House. Rise, Hillary, Rise!

  28. My link is to the story url via my comment page, but then click to the main site and try and find that 5 pm thurs diary by kos, it was still up this morning when I commented, yet now its been deleted: see last night’s frontpage 5 pm stories…

  29. riverdaughter: His arrogance is boundless, but one day, he will walk the streets of his blog as the dust races up and down the avenues and wonder where everyone went.

  30. RD, Love BO’s Oregon talking points. Odd how BO screw ups like these don’t get on the radar but a typo from HRC’s camp is breaking news, hmmmm.

    “When in Oregon visit the majestic mountains, verdant countryside and the glistening Great Lakes. Our PA veterans do!”

  31. rd: You blog is polite and educating. You have set the standard for discourse. Even the opposition stays within the guidelines for the most part. And if someone errs there is usually an apology offered. You don’t find that elsewhere.

  32. RD, I’m not actually all that surprised at the success of The Confluence. A lot of people left DK, even before the big exodus. I can still remember how I felt when I read your post “An Invitation to Kossacks in Exile.” It was as if I had suddenly found an island of sanity in the sea of frustration. I loved your writing, it made me laugh, and made me feel that I wasn’t alone.

    It doesn’t surprise me at all that there were lots of other people like me seeking a refuge from the ugliness that had become DK and many other “progressive” blogs. Not only that, but you have made us all feel as if we too are contributors to the success of the blog. You are a warm and welcoming hostess.

  33. A good day To Be, Rather than to Seem. Esse Quam Videri, from gary’s excellent NC post earlier.

    Proudly independent Oregon’s state motto, BTW, is Alis Volat Propriis — “She Flies With Her Own Wings” — and legend has it that it Oregon was settled by what remained of the wagon trains after the fools among them turned elsewhere in search of gold.

    Gold, I tell ya! GOLD! Hee-hee-hee-hee!

    We’ll see how many of which kind of voters are left when the ballots are tallied.

  34. Like Hillary Clinton, riverdaughter has shown me how important it is to be strong. When I was ready to throw in the towel, riverdaughter created this place and laughed at the haka and the boyz.

    I’m one of these tried-and-true “scut work” Democrats. I had no motivation at all to do anything in the fall. But now I’m ready to roll.

    I got a robo-call from Nita Lowey’s office yesterday announcing “office hours” in her local office tomorrow. I’m on her donor/activist list. I wonder what’s up? What should I ask her?

  35. ronk: NJ doesn’t have much of a state motto. Ours is “Liberty and Prosperity. (I think my surname has a more interesting one: Celer et veritas.)
    BUT we *do* have a state dinosaur, the Hadrosaurus . How many states can say THAT?

  36. rd: How many states have a state dino? Just about all of ’em!

    Or at least a state fossil. WA geologically recent lava beds, Cascade volvanoes and glacial deposits don’t leave much room for dino farms, but we have an official mammoth.

  37. P.S. Purely-volcanic Hawaii has no official fossils, but they do have Sen. Inouye.

    (I kid. He’s one of my heroes, even despite his enduring friendship with Alaska’s Ted Stevens.)

  38. Jeralyn @ Talkleft mentioned this story yesterday and it’s really worth a read.

    The AP spent a year in NC tracking one of these unsophisticated, low-level, uninformed, low-level, racist voters who typically choose Hillary over Obama.

    A NC voter sizes up Obama, Clinton, and finally decides

    As a clinical research consultant working in North Carolina’s Research Triangle, Meribeth Howlett knows how to get to the bottom of things.

    Her latest project was deciding whether to vote for Barack Obama or Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Democratic primary Tuesday. Now she’s made her choice and voted by absentee ballot.

    The Associated Press has been keeping up with Howlett, 43, since late last year as part of an AP-Yahoo News series of polls going back to the same group of people to see how their thinking about the campaign evolves.

    Howlett’s account:

    “OK — I made a decision, but I should say up front that I’d be happy to vote for either Hillary or Barack. However, I voted for Hillary Clinton. Yes, I’ve been on Web sites and found the two to have plans that are remarkably similar and so it came down to a more philosophical decision, who do I BELIEVE will do a better job. Because Barack Obama identifies himself as the best candidate to be an agent of ‘real change in Washington,’ I was expecting to see some details outlining innovative plans to achieve change, but I did not see anything that stood out as greatly different from what Hillary proposes.

    “Hillary has deep roots in D.C. and that has pros-cons. I am viewing it as a positive in that I believe she understands how to navigate the system to make changes (as well as knowing what won’t work). Another plus for me is that she has spent more time than any of the candidates researching the health care issue and can build on what she learned back when her husband was president.

    “My husband believes Barack is less beholden to corporate ties and therefore will be less influenced by the lobbyist-corporations that heavily influence policy makers. This is the first time that we will not be voting the same way.

    “I will confess that I’m saddened that I’ll be lumped in the polls as just another middle-aged white female voting for Hillary since it has absolutely nothing to do with gender or ethnicity.”

    That last part really makes me sad. The Obama campaign and their supporters have tarred a large swath of good Democrats, who happen to be white as racists just because they dare to think Obama is not all that. Moreover, they have used us blacks as a bat to just bludgeon anyone who doesn’t join the Church of Obama.

  39. Obama tells an Indiana audience “I’m not going to give a speech or anything, I just want to stop by … and maybe get a beer.”

    As his working class metrics plummet, the ambitious young senator has mounted a transformational plan to start hanging out in topless joints and playing the $3 pull-tabs … while artfully ducking his opponent’s roving flatbed truck.

  40. “artfully ducking his opponent’s roving flatbed truck.” love it!

    turns out the Jimmy Carter diary is there again from yesterday…don’t know what happened

  41. Speaking of the pull-tabs, we have fresh Monte Carlo estimates from Hominid Views.

    Hillary, 78.8% probability of beating McCain, with 278 mean EV.

    Obama? 40.6%, 263.

    The narrowness of the margins would suggest this is a “swing” contest, not a “map changer” cycle.

  42. Charles,

    Do you have a link to those comments at Indystar? I’d love to read them. I grew up in Indiana and still have lots of family there, including my parents.

  43. BB:

    Ask and ye shall receive.

  44. Thank you MABlue,

    I’m convinced Hillary will win Indiana. I know Hoosiers, and when they actually see and hear Hillary, she will win them over. Obama dosn’t have a chance there, IMO. I just hope the trends toward Hillary continue in NC and it’s at least close. But imagine if she won there? Next would be WV and KY, which will go big for Hillary. Obama might have to drop out at that point.

  45. [Trollery involving “Vince Foster, Paul, Whitegate, etc” elided — RonK]

  46. I’ll see your foibles, and raise you a peccadillo.

    Obamanists have a “War Room” excerpt in viral circulation on YouTube, in which Mickey Kantor (a Clinton supporter) curses Indiana voters, and uses a racial slur.

    Except that original cinematographer DA Pennebaker has come forward to declare it’s a fake.

  47. Does anybody see a modest Obama win in NC and a modest Clinton win in Indiana? I think a lot of people have in the last several months had high hopes that the “latest” round of primaries would settle the whole issue, only to be disappointed after the fact. A related and broader question: is e-hostility by supporters going to be separate in voters minds after the DNC (assuming it does not increase)? It seems like that is a distinction rarely made, maybe its just me.

    Anyway about the whole gas thing, I’ve read several articles that claim the gas tax would do nothing based on the following reasoning. The lower price would raise demand, the higher demand would raise the price, the tax holiday would only lower prices for a short period of time (around a week). The higher consumption would then exacerbate current problems and lead to a larger price shock at it’s conclusion. I’m not an economist so I’m not sure whether this would be the case or not. Either way, energy (future lack of) scares me.

  48. what about the electoral college matchups?

  49. Ryan: You’re right about the microeconomic explanation on the price of gas but that is in absolute terms. Hillary plans to couple it with a windfall profits tax so presumably, there would be some incentive for oil companies to stop speculating. The other thing is the psychological impact. $30 bucks can buy a bag of groceries or buy a kid a pair of new jeans or shoes. It’s not insignificant. And if the cost is 18 cents cheaper on truckers too, the price of food and goods should stabilize. But what people REALLY need is a raise.
    Yes, yes, we need to discourage consumption but this oil crunch is hitting poor people really hard. Relief is urgently needed.

  50. “kerfuffle”

    now there is a word one does not hear everyday….

  51. i hear that word every day

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