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      An enemy is someone who means you harm and has the means to inflict it. A friend is someone who has wants to do good for you, and has the means to bestow it. I once wrote primarily to predict and to change the world. I now write to help a few people, those who […]
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The Power of Narratives

The incomparable Bob Somerby at Daily Howler often talks about narratives.  His background in teaching is apparent because he repeats his lessons over and over until they sink in.  Some people never learn.

Although Somerby’s focus is on the media and the way they make up stories to force Democratic candidates into their preconceived narratives, that is not my topic here.

Narratives are a form of story-telling shorthand.  They set the stage, identify the characters and usually determine the ending of the story.  In the old Hollywood westerns, the good guys wore white hats and the bad guys wore black hats.  If the character was wearing a white hat, you knew right away that he was a brave and virtuous protector of the innocent, and that he would triumph over evil before the movie ended.

Over tha past several decades, the Republican party has been very successful in establishing narratives that give them an enormous advantage in electoral politics.  The first narrative is that Republicans are “regular people” and that they are brave and patriotic people of faith.  They also can be counted on to protect America from criminals and foreign threats.

The other narrative is that Democrats are hypocritical elitists that are unpatriotic, immoral and corrupt.  They are weak in the face of foreign aggression and they care more about the rights of criminals than they do about victims. 

I am not saying that either of those narratives is true, in fact I know that they are not.  But those narratives exist, and they affect the way people perceive events and evaluate candidates.  You can think of them as “default” settings or rebuttable presumptions.  That puts the burden on each Democratic candidate to prove that both narratives are false, otherwise the Republican candidate wins by default.

If you take those narratives and apply them to the last few weeks of this election campaign, you can see that the Democratic party and the Obama campaign seem determined to prove that those narratives are true.

First you have Senator Obama, who is the poster child for arrogance, building his own Greek temple at Invesco Field to give his acceptance speech.  After the earlier flaps over the “Great Seal of Obama” and the cult-like nature of his supporters, that was the height of political tone-deafness.  He continues to reinforce the “elitist” narrative over and over. 

Obama is trying to sell himself as a person of faith in order to court the fundamentalist vote.  But his credentials on religion are tied to Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who says things like “God damn America” and “U.S of KKK-A” which don’t appear very patriotic.  Obama’s relationship with William Ayers strongly reinforces the idea that he is unpatriotic.

The sexism and misogyny directed at Hillary Clinton from within the Democratic party reinforces the “hypocritical” narrative, and the sham roll-call vote fits the definition of “corrupt.”  The wankfest over how many house John McCain and his wife own just helped to reinforce the “corrupt” narrative because it allowed McCain to bring up Tony Rezko. 

Which brings us to John McCain.  When the angry chihuahuas of Obamanation started yapping about the false allegation that McCain plagiarized the “cross in the dirt” story from Aleksandr Solzhenisyn, they were pushing a story that involved McCain’s experience being tortured as a POW during the Vietnam War.  IOW – to attack McCain over what was at most an irrelevant lie, they reinforced the “brave,: “patriotic” and “protect America” narratives.  And now that the plagiarism issue is debunked, it turns out they also reinforced the “people of faith” narrative.

So on Friday, when John McCain announced the selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his Vice Presidential nominee, what did Obamanation immediately do?  They attacked her on issues that reinforce the narratives.

They criticized her for being from a small town in a sparsely populated states, which was a two-fer because it reinforced the “regular people” narrative for her and the “elitist” narrative for the Democrats.  They picked on the fact that she is a working mother (“regular people” and “Democrats are hypocrites”) and launched misogynistic attacks on her (hypocrites)

Then to top it off, they started a wankfest dubbed “Troopergate” where they accused her of acting inappropriately to get her abusive ex-brother-in-law fired from his job as a state trooper.  The message that the non-Koolaid drinking public will hear is that Sarah Palin will protect them, and that Democrats don’t care about victims.

So what have the Democrats and the Obama campaign done to rebut the narratives?

I’ll have to get back to you on that.

253 Responses

  1. Well I can’t wait to see the narrative of McCain and Palin rush out right after (or before) being nominated to immerse themselves in helping and recording the plight of Gustav victims!

    I realized something about the two of them together: the reason for the SYNERGY is the genuine admiration they have for eachother, and especially her deep and authentic appreciation of him. It’s an interesting phenomenon that seems to have been overlooked in talking about VP choices.

    The following is not a good example of what I’m saying, but it comes to mind–Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa. Never get to watch that, but she helps him to sparkle.

  2. It really does help to see him with someone who isn’t old and male.

    He brings experience and she brings energy

  3. I just watched their rally on CSPAN. She truly admires McCain and wants him as commander in chief because her son is in the Army. They had 15,000 at the rally there and the crowds were chanting USA, USA. Also, the country music was blaring. Ahhhh, THE NARRATIVE.

  4. There is actually a fine blog whose URL is, yes, powerofnarrative, and whose name is “Once upon a time….”

  5. I keep reminding myself, wow, there’s a woman on one of the tickets. This is great!!! Why didn’t the democrats think of that.

  6. I think another common aspect to the conservative narrative is that Democrats (and non-conservatives in general) are “dumb” and Republicans are “smart’. Republicans generally, I think, see themselves as canny, smart and not ruled by their emotions and feelings like the feely- touchy Democrats.

    As I recall the old saying goes if you’re not left-wing when you’re young then you don’t have a heart, and if you’re not right-wing when you’re older then you haven’t got a brain (think Rupert Murdoch).

    But where does that leave Obama who seems to have neither heart nor brain?

    Has anyone else noticed how much the great orator is stammering? I would swear that in his speech last night he was under the influence of something – maybe tiredness, but he stuttered quite a lot, and was very flat in his delivery.
    Could he have a neurological problem?

  7. Wasn’t Obama super-gung-ho about winning small-state caucuses? Now small states are to be sneered at?

    Hey, where’d “Cheeto” come from?

  8. Could he have a neurological problem? Yes, it’s called “John McCain trumped my once in a generation speech and I’m not over it.”

  9. Good observation, Hatshepsut. I kept noticing during her accpetance speech that McCain was looking at her like a proud father looks at his daughter.

  10. Sarah is The One the Republican party has been waiting for. She is quickly turning into a rock star in those circles. It’s a shame. The Rs actually respect a dynamic, intelligent woman.

  11. Great analysis about the narrative, myiq.

    Obama has definitely been outplayed this time. The DNC should have known better.

  12. #
    purplefinn, on August 31st, 2008 at 7:36 pm Said:

    ‘Could he have a neurological problem? Yes, it’s called “John McCain trumped my once in a generation speech and I’m not over it.”’

    Well, that’s what I was thinking. Does this suggest that he stammers and stutters under stress? I think so. For such a “cool” guy he seems to have too little upstairs to even think about being POTUS. But that’s not a problem peculiar to the Democrats – the incumbent would sound articulate stuttering. Maybe Hillary is just too smart for the Democratic powers that be who already had to suffer under another smart Democrat President?

  13. We all buy into the narrative. Lincoln and “I can never tell a lie”, Washington and the cherry tree, Kennedy with PT 109, McCain as maverick (although I kind of think James Garner was dreamy in that role!), Obama and the “welfare” years. A narrative acts to flesh out these people whom we have no reason to believe we will ever meet in real life. Fine, I can buy into that just so much.

    But to mistake what is being poured out there as “narrative” with respect to Sarah Palin is just too sick to contemplate. This is politics at its worst. The construction is beneath contempt in its portrayal. When lies and innuendo sink to this level it is time for us to step back and place a cover over that sewer. Disagree on policies and decisions, demand the best they have to offer, put their feet more firmly to the fire on first inspection, but move as far from the politics of personal destruction as we can.

    This bodes ill for all involved since it says more about the presume leadership forthcoming from this race than it does for our delight in watching the other guy get his. Not one candidate is free from discussion and examination but base it on honesty of the narrative rather than the evisceration. The dog may yet turn and bite its master.

  14. “She is quickly turning into a rock star in those circles.” ben carlson


    Maybe that’s the cause of Obama’s despondence. She’s as pretty as he is and challenges his star power.

  15. “60 Minutes” will feature a segment with Obama and Biden where “a good mother” will be uttered on Palin’s behalf. Is this all they’ve got?

  16. If You Havent Seen This You must
    P. Diddy Shows Disrespect For McCain And Palin (SAD)

  17. Bob Somerby is the best. I only wish that more journalists out there would read his website and take what he says to heart. The media is not only an absolute embarrassment but it has hurt our nation by distorting the truth and smearing the few politicians left who are willing to fight for working Americans.

    Obama and the DNC have reinforced the narrative that Democrats are arrogant and elitist so many times in this election that I’m starting to believe it too. Obama is wrong for our country during this particular time in our history when we need a fighter who actually cares about Americans other than their own family to take care of business in Washington. I don’t see Obama or McCain as a solution to our nation’s problems but at least McCain is tolerable. It’s sad when a lifelong Democrat would rather vote for a Republican because they can no longer stand listening to Obama ramble on television. Obama to me is another George W. Bush: arrogant, egotistical, petty, and ignorant.

  18. Yeah, she is much prettier than anyone near the Obama/Biden ticket. And I think in her post-feminist way enjoys the compliment. This is a woman who knows exactly who she is. All of these vicious attacks won’t unnerve her one bit.

  19. It takes a lot of chutzpah for someone who banned me from his site to come here and post comments on my threads.


  20. How does Obama know she’s a “good mother.” Maybe she’s a horrible mother with good looking kids. Ugh.

  21. lambert, that IS a good blog. Very thoughtful writing there.

  22. What’s obvious to me is that McCain isn’t afraid of strong women.

  23. Cindy McCain was on This Week with George Stepawhosis, no disrespect to Greeks everywhere I just can’t spell it.

    Mrs. McCain, whom I personally admire very much and I don’t give a damn what party she belongs to, seemed delighted with Palin as VP and happy about the choice. She said something about how the two of them clicked and I think that’s apparent when they are together now. Whether it will last or not is another question.

    Hopefully McCain doesn’t have the kind of ego that will get irritated at her getting too much attention. For now, it seems to have worked out well for the Republicans and let a whole lot of air out of the Obamacrats.

    If I was still a Democrat I might be worried about that.

  24. Here’s another narrative:

    “Democrats are divisive and highly partisan.”

    We all know about the divisive stuff. Now we see “progressives” who can’t say anything nice about the second woman ever nominated to the Vice Presidency.

    Anything and everything that McCain or Palin do or say provokes the angry chihuahuas of Obamanation to start barking and yapping.

  25. Speaking of narrative take a gander at McCain’s daughter’s blog:


  26. Count Us Out: I couldn’t finish that Diddy video. The man is ignorant and full of Obama extra strength kool-aid. He knows little about anything else besides rap music and spending extravagantly on boos and his “hos”. I don’t expect celebrities like himself to have an ounce of respect for any women much less a white woman who did something in her life other than become a prostitute, model, or porn star which are probably the only women Diddy knows.

  27. Our delight in the selection of Sarah Palin lies more in what her placement suggests to us as Dems:

    1. The Dems blew it big time! They could have had two popular candidates on the ticket which may have earned them another 16 years of party rule. Instead they put their money on the most unqualified to assuage one segment of the voting population at the expense of all others.

    2. We bridled over the sexism that Hillary endured. Instead, a party never known for having much respect for women, came forward and selected a running mate with a great storyline.

    3. McCain shoved it right into the faces of the DNC! His willingness to appoint this candidate showed guts no matter how craven the intent.

    4. Women can take heart that someone from their gender has been thrust upon the national scene who is grassroots from the bottom up.

    5. This move allows vindication of the smears attributable to Hillary Clinton from members of her own party.

    6. The hopeful destruction of the despicable DNC and their spineless candidate. This one act could very lead to that end and I salute it.

  28. Can you say the same about Obama?

    Is he a good father?

    For someone who worried openly in his book, “Audacity of Hope” about being an absentee father, how much time does he spend at home?

    I’m not saying he is or isn’t a good father just pondering aloud.

  29. The thing about narratives is that they are created – can be true, partly true, or fiction. Today’s narratives also associate with graphics and a picture is …well you know.

    It will be interesting to see what narratives come out of the next several days. Already GW BUsh is headed to Texas (near Gustav’s path, but also “home safe.”

    McCain is taking advantage of the vacuum at the top. Obama tried to look presidential in Europe, but he has not yet attacked a real problem – Biden went to Georgia for him.

    More empty suit, and I think it’s because of an empty head.

  30. myiq2xu, on August 31st, 2008 at 7:54 pm Said:

    Anything and everything that McCain or Palin do or say provokes the angry chihuahuas of Obamanation to start barking and yapping.

    Gosh I need a laugh and it reminded me of that picture of the chihuahuas…
    nip, nip, nip…

  31. Two important aspects of narrative are place and – where and when they they are instantiated, sometimes known as topos and chairos.

    A topos is a space, a site, but a special marked off site – think Obama’s stadium and Greek pillars. Chairos is a period of time set apart for the carrying out of some specific task – think McCain’s timing of the announcement of his VP pick. Both time and place can be critical in the subsequent impact of the reinforcement of a narrative.

    IMHO Obama blew his topos, and McCain succeeded brilliantly with his chairos. Now if McCain can get his topos in place he may – very soon – begin to blow Obama out of the water: blast him out of space and time. (and good riddance).

  32. Bonita: Who is to say? Anymore than he knows her capabilities of parenting, we know just as little of his. But this is his usual fluff off the shoulder remark intended to minimize another candidate. But I guess the fault lies with his staff.

  33. kenoshaMarge, on August 31st, 2008 at 7:50 pm Said:
    Cindy McCain was on This Week with George Stepawhosis, no disrespect to Greeks everywhere I just can’t spell it …

    I caught that interview too. Cindy took offense to the “homes” question being leveled at John. She went on to explain: “My father had nothing. He and my mother sold everything they had to raise $10000.” Then she ended that discussion by stating how proud she was to have what her parents left her, because they’re (her parents) story is “the American dream”.

  34. wac for hillary, at risk of sounding like one of those illogical emotion-based voters, I simply KNOW in my soul that Obama has big, big issues with women. McCain does not, despite his occasional salty language.

    This is not purely instinct on my part, as I have plenty of evidence to back it up. But nor is it solely a matter of lining up the facts and comparing, either. Part of it IS intuition, from that part of me that unconsciously absorbs tone and body language.

    Obama is very uncomfortable with strong women. He especially has a very deep-seated anger at white women. Maybe something to with his mom, I dunno, but there is serious pathology there. Obama is very uncomfortable with gay people. McCain, for all his conservatism, doesn’t seem to be at all. I do not care what WORDS are coming out of Obama’s mouth, I know what I see. And it says SNAKE IN THE GRASS to me as a woman.

    When they show you who they are, believe them.

  35. I love it that they’re attacking Sarah Palin for being the governor of a “small” state.

    Alaska is ranked the 47th state by population –after Wyoming (48), North Dakota (49) and — Ta–Da-a-ah — Vermont (50!) — home of DNC chair and former governor Howard Dean, from whence he launched his 2004 presidential bid, and spiritual home to a large # of deaniacs who have migrated over to the obama cult.

    Rounding out the 10 smallest states by population, in ascending order, with associated prominent obamaphiles: South Dakota (Daschle), Delaware (Biden), Montana (Gov. Schweitzer), Rhode Island (Jack Reed), Hawaii (The One), and New Hampshire (Jean Shaheen).

    Question: How large does a state’s population have to be for its governor or senator to be taken seriously if he is NOT an obamabot — or even if she is?

    Fun facts: Alaska is the largest state in territory (3 times the size of Texas), borders 2 major foreign countries (Canada & Russia), has the largest U.S. reserves of oil and natural gas, and has by far the longest coastline of any state — 4 times the coastline of number 2, Florida.

    Just sayin’.

  36. Pat: The usual he doesn’t take resonsibility or blame for anything.

    Exactly! Another example of how Obama doesn’t get it when he says things that offend people.

  37. WV:

    I call them “angry chihuahuas” because they have an over-inflated sense of their own power and worth.

    I really doubt the GOP is terrified by them. Hillary wasn’t.

    But I am beginning to think that Karl Rove may actually be a genius, albiet an evil one.

    So far the GOP has run a pretty clean and relatively positive campaign.

    But the blogger boiz are so pumped up for a fight, they are overreacting and making themselves look bad.

    “ZOMG! Dogwhistle! Dogwhistle!”

    It reminds me of an old Andy Capp comic, where he tells the cop “I thought he was gonna hit me, so I hit him back first.”

  38. typo: “because they’re (her parents) story is …”

    Should read: “their”

  39. Eggplant:

    In terms of imagery and media/message management, McCain is tactically superior.

    I think he and the GOP have been playing possum

  40. I agree they (Obamabots) need to be really careful about the narratives they’re playing with ’cause it looks like they’re risking getting played.

    I saw this elsewhere:

    On the elitism charge – they risk playing Sigourney Weaver to Palin’s Melanie Griffith in “Working Girl”? Certainly there’s Mr. Smith Goes to Washington mixed in there too.

    On the troopergate charge – they’re going to make Palin look like Dirty Harry. Unorthodox? Yes. Popular? Yes. And is defending domestic violence and child abuse REALLY the hill they want to die on?

    Maybe the Republicans found their Joan of Arc.

  41. It’s not just Obama who has fear of strong white women. The internets are blowing the rose-colored glasses off me that I’ve had about the Dem party. I see more clearly than ever, and it ain’t purty.

  42. count us out — I hate to sound like an elitist, but anyone who actually listens to Diddy to pick the President of the USA should not be allowed to vote.

  43. myiq2xu, I always enjoy your essays, but this one is particularly out of the ballpark. Bravo.

  44. Sharon:

    After reading allegedly “progressive” blogs, I often feel like I need a shower.

  45. UPDATE: The video was just shown on The Fox News with sub titles!!

  46. I have to absolutely agree with this. Yesterday, they had some Dem, a supporter of Obama’s, laying into a Repub, about all the many faults Sarah Palin has…. She’s too young, too inexperienced, no foreign experience, she’s ONLY been a mayor of a small town, she’s ONLY been a Gov. for 2 years, Too green to be trusted with being only a heartbeat away from the WH…..ect. And of course the Repub, was throwing it all back in the Dem’s face.

    And I just started laughing, I wonder, if after the interview the Dem would re-watch his performance, and realize how ridiculous he sounded. What the Republican’s have done, is put someone up who in so many ways IS a female version of Obama.
    Less experienced than most who’ve run for Pres. or Vp.
    New to the scene.
    She too IS an agent of change.
    And by criticizing her, with all the criticisms people have made against Obama they are making the case themselves why we shouldn’t vote for him.

    Do they simply not see this? The Republican are playing them like a dime store fiddle.

    And the only thing Obama has ever truly touted as the reason to vote for him, his “superior judgment,” hasn’t even been addressed to Palin by them.

    But perhaps the difference here is that all those faults we found in Obama that we were told were not valid, ARE valid in Palin’s case.
    But why could THAT be? I suppose the only real difference would be she’s white and she’s female.

    Ummmmm, Obama’s half white, so maybe that’s not it. Oh dear….you don’t suppose…..could this be…..*gasp*….sexism rearing it’s ugly head?????? Oh noooo!!!!!!!!!!

    Perish the thought! Surely Obama is above such a thing. Never mind, I shouldn’t have even mentioned it.

    You just have to scratch your head at this stuff!

  47. I can’t think of any examples of over-the-top attacks on Obama by righty blogs, and they won’t touch anything remotely rac*st with a 10-ft pole.

    BTW – Calling Obama “arrogant” and/or “presumptuous” is not rac*st, no matter what Digby thinks.

  48. Digby is not the boss of us.

  49. Of course I’m the one who’s racist for saying that he’s never held a full time job.

  50. ya know – there’s something that makes me smile when I visit Fox News and they always make sure the “uhhs” and “umms” are included when they post something Obama has said…
    miss Hill, miss Bill.

  51. The GOP is using politcal judo

    They are using the Democrats own energy against them.

  52. katiebird – you are so funny. What I did like about the Clintons’ speeches was that they mapped out Obie’s job description – so they (and we) would be the boss of him!

    Back on topic: I was looking to see if the Dem ticket was taking advantage of the executive vaccum in the face of the storm (they’re not – dolts!) but I found this!

    “Biden: Palin’s good-looking
    Posted: 05:15 PM ET

    From CNN Political Producer Alexander Marquardt

    Biden and Obama campaigned in Ohio Sunday.
    TOLEDO, Ohio (CNN) – Joe Biden says there are obvious differences between himself and fellow vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, but they’re not just on policy. She’s good-looking.”

  53. So, I guess we can justly call any of the Obama culties “sexist” now for not voting for an agent of change, because it’s coming from a woman.
    I know they’ll say she’s a Republican, to which I would say…”so”?

    Didn’t stop all those supposed cross over Repubs going to Obama. Weren’tTHEY voting against their party for the “change agent”? Of course no one is accusing THEM of being Democrats.
    And in THIS year, I think that’s a MUCH dirty word than Republican!

  54. myiq “The GOP is using politcal judo”

    you are brilliant if not a good tpyist

  55. #
    myiq2xu, on August 31st, 2008 at 8:22 pm Said:

    “The GOP is using political judo

    They are using the Democrats own power against them.”

    I think it’s possible they’re using (political) Aikido – do not confront an attack, do not even see it as an attack, lead your attacker where they want to go, and let them fall as they will.

  56. Still:

    He was right about that.

  57. katiebird – I just saw the remark about him not having had a full-time job – whaddaya call running for president? sheesh! Guy’s been working his tail off – oh wait – sorry, that was Hillary out campaigning for him.

  58. Yesterday Bill Clinton at STJ’s funeral made me realize what we are missing. A real leader who relates to people who isn’t afraid to take on his critics or opponents. His tribute moved me to tears.

    I cried again for what could have been! And for what? An empty suit with no real soul or love of people.

  59. Indigo:

    It’s not all about “i”

  60. myiq — I was almost offended on behalf my beloved chihuahua until you explained that:

    ” I call them “angry chihuahuas” because they have an over-inflated sense of their own power and worth.”

    Now I have to admit you hit the nail on the head. My chihuahua thinks she’s a Rottweiller — I don’t have the heart to tell her she’s not. But those idiot Obots should have more self-awareness. Someone needs to smack them on their noses with a rolled up newspaper.

  61. Yeah, but myiq – is that all guys notice? I heard comedians attacking all the original debaters on issues and answers, and then the only remarks they had about Hillary were about her looks. That’s lookism.

  62. teehee

  63. My last post in in Moderation. Someone please set it free…..

  64. Oh Never mind, it was!

  65. Bonita: “I cried again for what could have been! And for what? An empty suit with no real soul or love of people.”

    Copy. The emptiness is beginning to resound!

  66. I don’t see Rove in the Palin pick. Rove is all about the dirty, underhanded move. The Palin pick was open and aboveboard brilliant.

    There are people I disagree with who I have no respect for, generally because their claimed “principles” are a simply a cover for their real philosophy, “I got mine, fuck you.” But there are some people who, despite our political disagreements, I do respect. I don’t know Palin personally, and doubt I ever will, but from what I’ve read so far, it seems likely she’d fall into that second category.

    One of my major beefs with “pro-lifers” is that their true agenda seems to simply be wanting to dictate women’s reproductive lives. They don’t actually care about the welfare of the mothers and children – otherwise they’d be pushing for comprehensive pre- and post-natal care and guaranteed health care for children, at the very least.

    While I’d oppose her on being anti-choice and anti-contraceptive, other things Palin supports, like better reproductive education and financial assistance for those struggling to support families, are things that any good feminist liberal can agree on.

    Sad but unsurprising that supporters of Mr. “we have to reach out to and understand the pro-lifers” are attacking Palin in such a vile way.

  67. Charles:

    That part about her “lack of an Ivy League education” resonates with me.

    For a variety of reasons, I went the California State University, Stanislaus.

    I bristle at anyone who thinks they are better than me because of their alma mater.

  68. Which video, katiebird? The Fowler one?

  69. Now we know that (D) stands for Double-standard (along with doublespeak)

  70. “lack of an Ivy League education”

    Uh- as in Harry Truman?

  71. One thing I value is that your actions should match your words.

    With Palin, you can at least say she walks the walk.

    You can’t say that about Obama.

  72. Still4Hill on August 31st, 2008 at 8:24 pm

    From CNN Political Producer Alexander Marquardt

    Biden and Obama campaigned in Ohio Sunday.
    TOLEDO, Ohio (CNN) – Joe Biden says there are obvious differences between himself and fellow vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, but they’re not just on policy. She’s good-looking.”


    Oh, oh. Biden’s starting to sound like Bush. He’s an expert also at stating the obvious.

  73. To add on to RD’s post from earlier: OBAMA’S EVANGELICAL VOTE: GONE!!

    His out reach to the young evangelicals: Palin may take care of that, too.

  74. The pro lifers love her because she puts a face on the pro-life that was never there before. She’s actually made the decision to carry the child to term. And when you see the pictures of her with her baby you can certainly understand why.

  75. I think the whole idea of the so-called “narrative” is the problem. By it’s nature, a narative is at least once removed from that which it describes, reality. We’ve had enough “narrative” on both sides. It is now a battle of the narratives. What about reality?

  76. BTW, I saw a poster who is from OH who knows some in the Tubbs-Jones family say that the politicizing of her funeral by Obama has NOT gone over well there.

    She says there were family members arriving late who did not even get to see the coffin or pay respects, because they let all the Obama-supporting Congressmen GO FIRST, and kept the rest of her distant family and constituents back. . Many of those congressmen didn’t know Stephanie at all, were just there to see and be seen and pass the koolaid around.

    The relative was PISSED OFF that Obama turned her funeral into a campaign rally.

  77. Fowler – needs to move into the 21st century – never assume you are not on camera.

  78. sister:

    I don’t know if Rove was involved in the Palin pick, but Rove has lots of influence in the GOP.

    Obamnation is trying to use Rove’s playbook, but he’s writing some new pages.

    Obamanation is so determined that they won’t take any shit, they look like the agressors in this campaign.

    Which undoes all that bs about a new kind of politics.

  79. Oh My Heck! Fowler says “one cannot expect one’s private conversations to be taped surrepticiously by a right-wing nut-case.” So, I guess it is the “right-wing nut-case’s” fault that you said that the timing of Gustav is proof that God is on the Dem’s side. He also said that his remarks were “in jest” and meant to evoke Falwells blaming of the “pagans, etc” for 9/11. What a lame-o moron.

  80. Newcomers to the national scene get defined very quickly, often on their very first day.

    Democratic operatives tried desperately to define Palin– Quayle in a dress, small town mayor, troopergate. It didn’t work.

    They blitzed and blitzed but they just couldn’t sack quarterback Sarah. Now she’s marching her team up the field for the game winning touchdown.

  81. wmcb: That makes me really sad about Stephanie’s funeral. Man, I keep saying how I miss Shirley Chisholm – she’d have put them in their places.

  82. MYIQ: Another great post!

  83. “She says there were family members arriving late who did not even get to see the coffin or pay respects, because they let all the Obama-supporting Congressmen GO FIRST, and kept the rest of her distant family and constituents back. ” WMCB


    That’s an outrage.

  84. I don’t need anyone to spoon feed me a “narrative”. This ain’t hollywood or bollywood. This is reality.

  85. If I want storytelling, I’ll go to kiddie hour at the library.

  86. very good entry!
    part of the reason the Oborg freaked out so badly about Palin was that she came with a compelling…narrative on her own. Obama ran his entire campaign on “look at me – I am so unusual and fascinating – everyone else is boring ans unworthy”. And now, he has to face – a woman- yeah, one of those creatures with no penis – who also comes with a narrative…So they went wild…
    As for Fowler’s apolofy – it’s what I used to call the Republican apology “if this offended” – a conditional apology. I suggest he get a hold of a dictionary and look for the definition of “satirical”. And everyone who heard the tape knows there was no joke about it. He was gloating!

  87. myiq: “Obamnation is trying to use Rove’s playbook, but he’s writing some new pages”

    Remember Rove was trained by Segretti. Obama is taking pages out of the Howard Hunt playbook – thuggery .

    The caucus gaming was a step worse than breaking into anybody’s headquarters, though – doing the Dirty Tricksters one better.

  88. Yes, we’re very excited. At least you had Geraldine Ferraro, and that was 24 years ago. I remember when Hillary became First Lady and was aggressive, I was impressed. I listened to the “b” word being thrown around, and said I’m glad that she’s willing to jump in and fight and if that makes her a “b,” that’s fine with me. Never would have thought that I’d defend a “D.”

    No offense to you Bill supporters, but I think Hillary would have made a better president than him. Sometimes I think she was the policy maker and he was just the charming speaker.

    “ben carlson, on August 31st, 2008 at 7:39 pm Said:

    Sarah is The One the Republican party has been waiting for. She is quickly turning into a rock star in those circles. It’s a shame. The Rs actually respect a dynamic, intelligent woman.”

  89. Still:

    Most Americans do not have a college degree. Among the minority that do, only a small fraction attended Ivy League colleges.

    To plagiarize Jeff Foxworthy:

    If you think that because you attended an Ivy League college you are better than other people, you may be an elitist.

  90. I’m hard pressed to come up with another example where a gamble was this successful in politics. McCain rolled the dice and it came up a seven. I really think the narrative will be about Sarah, not for one or two days but for the duration of this campaign.

  91. WMCB, on August 31st, 2008 at 8:39 pm Said:
    BTW, I saw a poster who is from OH who knows some in the Tubbs-Jones family say that the politicizing of her funeral by Obama has NOT gone over well there.

    She says there were family members arriving late who did not even get to see the coffin or pay respects, because they let all the Obama-supporting Congressmen GO FIRST, and kept the rest of her distant family and constituents back. . Many of those congressmen didn’t know Stephanie at all, were just there to see and be seen and pass the koolaid around.

    The relative was PISSED OFF that Obama turned her funeral into a campaign rally.

    WMCB: Those were my observations as well — from yesterday’s “Fair Is Fair” thread, I remarked:

    edwardian, on August 30th, 2008 at 5:33 pm Said:

    Have been out most of the day, but did manage to catch some of C-SPAN’s coverage of the Tubbs Jones memorial service.

    Some of the speeches and testimonies I found very heartwarming and touching. Hillary and Bill’s tributes to Rep. Tubbs Jones were insightful, heartfelt and uplifting. (Bill’s “jewelry store” anecdote was both hilarious and sweet.) The musical tributes I watched — the district school choir, followed by BeBe Winans — were quite moving.

    But there were other times throughout the service (and I maybe the only one who felt this way) that I couldn’t tell if the service was meant as a tribute to the life and legacy of Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones or a pep rally for Barack Obama’s campaign. The continuous deference paid him I found too much of a distraction. Even switched the channel a few times — too nauseating.

    All in all, though, I’m glad I got the opportunity to share in the well wishes and tributes being paid to such an amazing American treasure.”

  92. I can’t trust any media to tell me anything closely resembling the truth. Sometimes, once in a while, I see Michael Ware breaking shit down, on the real, on the ground… now that, that’s the closest thing I can get to truth telling. Everything else is spin. Narrative. Commentary.

  93. I commented to my husband while watching the service how it seemed to be a campaign rally.

    The Clinton’s were a few of the speakers that I thought really talked from their hearts. HRC was visibly upset.

    I’m sure it killed her to watch what those fools did at her friends funeral. I’m glad she said STJ wasn’t a fair weathered friend. Did you hear that John Lewis?

  94. SarahG “This ain’t hollywood or bollywood. ”

    LOL – I can’t WAIT for Tracy Ullman to come back on and get him in her clutches – she’ll bollywood him.

  95. Hey, I thought this thread was about narrative.

  96. And some red meat for the Conflucians:

    One of the first national polls weighing the impact of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as the Republican vice presidential nominee shows little change in a tight presidential race.

    The CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey released tonight gives the Democratic ticket of Senators Barack Obama and Joe Biden a 49 percent to 48 percent edge over the Republican ticket of Senator John McCain and Palin.

    That compares to a tie at 47 percent each when voters were asked earlier in August to choose between Obama and McCain, without their running mates mentioned.

  97. Republican Woman, well, you’re in good company. On Bill’s stump speech he often said that he thought Hillary would be a better president than he was. Much later, when asked, Chelsea agreed with him.

  98. Sarah:

    Reality is for people who can’t handle kool-aid.

    BTW – You forgot “Dolly-wood”

    Ms. Parton is upset

  99. edwardian: It was nauseating – completely out of line. Made me sick.

  100. Republican Woman, I agree, and I adore Big Dawg. Bill is the consummate politician, and did a lot of good things, from a big big heart, but I always believed Hillary had an even bigger passion for seeing government WORK the way it is supposed to than even he.

    I think she gets the big picture better than he does. He can charm and inspire, but she will work her fingers to the bone. He has more savvy in ways, but I think she has a particular kind of wisdom that he sometimes lacks, in a way I can’t put my finger on.

    She would be a better president than he was, IMO.

  101. We only require on-topic commenting for the first 30 seconds after a thread is posted.

  102. Kwame’s mother was particularly offensive saying the America would become a third world country.

    Folks, if the polls have this race tied going into election day, The One will lose!

  103. Well if anyone doubts Obama is sexist, I’ve seen all the proof I need over on his site.
    I go by there to read almost everyday. And everyday there were just post after post of the most hate filled attacks lobbied against Hillary. From in sighting violence against her, to accusing HER of plotting to kill Obama to get him out the race, and attacks on her looks and everything else you can imagine.
    I did video on tube pointing this out, I reported much of it over on the site, and questioned WHY would Obama who has control over what is said there, allow it to happen? Because that is how HE defines “unity” through a collective hatred of the enemy. WHOMEVER that maybe with one important difference. NOTHING I saw said towards McCain can compare to what was said about Hillary, who was always their main target. UNTIL the convention that is.

    During the convention, at the beginning of it, when all the media was covering the efforts of the PUMAs and other Hillary supporters trying to assure a fair nominating process, I fully expected to see them going crazier than ever on his site. So I was surprised to go by there and see none. Not only that, but I would say the posting was down significantly. Where before there had been 500-800 posts per thread, it averaged somewhere around 75-150. I couldn’t figure it out. It was ALSO during THIS time that attacks from the culties on other sites were intensifying tremendously!
    Then it hit me, “ah-ha!” Obama had FINALLY ordered moderation to be implemented on his site. It was there all along but because they were nearing the end of the primary and knowing Hillary people would be coming by now, they HAD to stop all the attacks.
    Without their usual home to unleash their hatred, the culties were forced to take it off-site. which is why the number fluctuated in BOTH places.

    Well guess what? It’s quited down on most of the other sites I visit now. And the number of posts over on Obama’s site are back up to the 800’s in posts again. As well as the never ending attacks. Only NOW they’re ALL on Sarah Palin!

    These are not the typical back and forth of any dueling candidate’s camps. This is HATE SPEECH, and it’s being allowed by Obama to get his based once more fired up and ready to go, as they love to say, and unify again in their hated of yet another woman.

  104. myiq:
    Harry Truman did not have a college degree and he managed to end WWII without one.

  105. I can only interpret the CNN poll to mean that Palin in two days has virtually neutralized Obama’s convention bounce.

  106. Oh man, the Democrats are so f^*(ed. The have tied themselves into knots over Palin. It would be funny if it weren’t so serious.

  107. Ben Carlson: “Polls” are just another tool of the “narrative” mongers. Benjamin Disraeli said there are “lies, damned lies and statistics”. Using statistics are the last resort for a weak argument. Why even reference a poll that doesn’t show anything outside of statistical error. These purveyors of narrative are taking polls every freaking hour. They’ll take them up to the last minute, and then a minute beyond. And in the end, they mean absoulutely nothing.

  108. Still4Hill, on August 31st, 2008 at 8:49 pm Said:
    edwardian: It was nauseating – completely out of line. Made me sick.

    Clearly they’ve forgotten how well this type of hijacking went over during Senator Wellstone’s memorial service back in 2002.

  109. #
    SarahG, on August 31st, 2008 at 8:38 pm Said:

    “I think the whole idea of the so-called “narrative” is the problem. By it’s nature, a narrative is at least once removed from that which it describes, reality. We’ve had enough “narrative” on both sides. It is now a battle of the narratives. What about reality?”

    SarahG, as a math and science person I agree. There is a “but” and it is that the reality needs to be conveyed to others in some fashion. That’s where people start telling stories, constructing narratives, as simplified versions, – cartoons if you will – of their realities. as myiq2xu writes; “Narratives are a form of story-telling shorthand. They set the stage, identify the characters and usually determine the ending of the story.”

    How we tell our stories, and where and when, to what effect, can have a dramatic impact on how we convey to others our interpretation of reality. Obama seems good at (empty) rhetoric, and Sarah Palin strong on reinforcing a narrative that resonates with many people. Obama looks and acts arrogant because he is – he thinks his shit doesn’t stink. I do believe that is a reality.

  110. Republican Woman: Hillary will be a better President than Bill. I think it’s in her blood to make it happen. I only disagree in that I think they both have some serious policy intellect, but he had the charm–at least at the time–that it took to get elected. She was a lot of his political conscience and I look forward to seeing that in the White House again–after John and Sarah get through.

  111. rd – The worst part is that they didn’t see this coming. Heads in the punchbowl.

  112. edwardian: Right! You have a memory like a steel trap!

  113. SarahG:

    Narratives exist. Another word for them is stereotypes. It seems to be hardwired into our brains.

    We will never defeat narratives and stereotypes by complaining about them. We can defeat negative narratives and sterotypes by demonstrating they are untrue.

  114. And while we’re on the topic (off-topic – or maybe not) there is this hijacking narrative developing. The caucuses, the nomination, the STJ funeral – all hijacked. This is their tactic. They take events and turn them to their advantage.

  115. RD, what it comes down to, and why they are so frustrated and panicked, is because whether you agree with her or not, Sarah Palin is authentic. She is and always has been exactly what she holds herself out to be. Whether you like her narrative or not, the reality of her life MATCHES her narrative.

    That scares them shitless, because they know that the One does not match his manufactured narrative AT ALL.

    Her very existence shows him up for the fraud that he is. This has nothing to do with political ideology, it has to do with being who you say you are.

    She is, he isn’t. That has them terrified.

  116. Eggplant. The narratives have gotten so over simplified that they are useless at best, and nothing more than plain old lies at worst. We don’t need dramatic effect to get the point accross.

    When this war started, I forced FORCED myself to go to the most grisly war video and picture sites. My friends thought I was sick. I didn’t do it because I wanted to ge5t off on that sort of thing. I did it because it was so easy for everyone to have an f’ing opinion based on what their party or the media fed them. After spending some time as close as I would ever get to the sh*t, I completely changed how I argued about the war. I was much less vehement, much less positional. Much less rabid.

    Reality is dramatic enough. I don’t need any help interpreting the facts

  117. Was there any kind of sustained tribute to STJ during the convention. I saw that when Nancy Pelosi led out the women of the house of reps they said a little something, but it seemed like until Hillary introduced her son Mervin during her speech that she was being ignored. I cried my eyes out during her memorial service. Some of the people there tried to turn it into an Obama rally, but it seems like the people that really knew and loved her did a really great job of making it about her. That high school student that she mentored really broke my heart.

  118. trist, on August 31st, 2008 at 8:52 pm

    Thank you for the courage to visit the site and give your analysis. Creeps me out when I’m reminded of Obama’s vileness.

  119. #
    SarahG, on August 31st, 2008 at 9:00 pm Said:

    “Reality is dramatic enough. I don’t need any help interpreting the facts.”

    SarahG, I agree. But there are many, many people without your imagination (I mean that as a compliment). How then do you convey your reality to them?


    9AM: “Awesome, Gustav is going to wipe out the RNC. McCain won’t get any face time this week.”

    11AM: “Wait a minute. With all this talk about Gustav no one is talking about Palin?”

    4PM: “Huh? McCain suspended the convention. Bush isn’t going to speak? Cheney won’t be there? Just Laura? People like Laura.”

    8PM: “We are F’cked! Gustav is going to hit. There’s going to be tragedy of epic proportions and guess who will be giving a speech in primetime this week? ”

    9PM: “Oh wait. Gustav might not be that bad. God, really is on our side.”

  121. SarahG:

    Good for you!

    Unfortunately, not everyone is as diligent at seeking reality.

    Many of them just see the shadows on the cave wall

  122. Good article

    Thanks for putting my thoughts into words.

  123. Still4Hill: No, thw worst thing is that they *did* see it coming but they, like four year olds, still believe in magical thinking. No matter what they say, we *will* vote for Obama. No matter how badly they treated Hillary and the voters, we “will* all kiss and make up and return to the fold by fall. They KNEW what was happening but they believed, without any evidence, that they could pass off a lightweight, use misogynism as a blunt instrument and rob the voters of their right to self-determination and still get away with it. They believe that the Republicans are so bad that we would let all of that slide.
    Except *this* Republican, who isn’t actually a criminal. *This* Republican appears to learn from his mistakes.

  124. WMCB, on August 31st, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    Another Bingo!

  125. If you’re a football fan, it’s like watching a kickoff return where you realize that the runner has made it through the coverage and “He. Could. Go. All. The. Way.” Except it’s a she…

  126. Hi Maria: I think Nancy Pelosi probably like STJ as much as she likes Hillary and probably toward the end of May was twisting her arm as she did others to get Hillary to concede. I don’t think there was any love lost there – Nancy got to say a lot about what did and did not happen in Denver.

  127. myiq2xu: Well, perhaps we may defeat them by demonstrating that they aren’t true, but we also have a duty to stop creating a market for them. Just like the paparazzi and the tabloids. Neither would exist if there weren’t people who buy them. I ain’t buying, and I ain’t gonna spent time arguing with the purveyors of so-called “narratives”. If i argue with them long enough I look like and idiot for arguing with idiots.

  128. I’m sorry if this has already been posted but I am too angry to read, I’m just posting. After all of the misogyny that I watched toward Sen Clinton, now it begins on Gov. Palin. Whatever you may think of her, she’s a sister, and a mom. First the attack was that her baby who was born in April with Downs Syndrome was actually her daugther’s, concurrently they wailed that she was a bad mother to run for VP with a special needs child. Now Alan Colmes on his blog http://www.alan.com posted that it was Sarah’s fault that the baby was born with Downs Syndrome. He obviously knows nothing about the condtion or it’s causes but aside from that it’s none of his business! In his ignorant opinion Gov. Palin waited too long when she went into labor with her fifth child to get her self to the hospital. Alan believes this may have lead to hi??s being born with DS. What??? Sorry for the long post, but as a mother of a special needs child, I am livid.

  129. WMCB: That was exactly what Rush said when she was introduced. This woman has nothing to hide in her personal story. AUTHENTICITY.

  130. Charles:

    I can see how it is genetically hardwired.

    Back in the mists of time, a caveman sees a lion. He recalls that a different lion ate his cousin, and decides he should be afraid of this one too.

    Then he sees a wolf. It doesn’t look like a lion, but it has a long tail and sharp pointed teeth.

    So he avoids the wolf too, and lives to reproduce.

  131. On one of the talking head news shows this morning there was a clip of Governor Palin being interviewed about energy policy and oil drilling. She knew her stuff down COLD and she sounded very smart. The Obamabots can think she’s just a cupcake, but it was obvious that this woman is not going to roll over in her debate with Joe Biden. In fact, she called him out by name for voting against the (now accepted as VITAL to America’s energy supply) Trans-Alaska pipeline 30 years ago.

    Sarah Barracuda DUNKED on Joe Biden. It was awesome.

  132. rd – magical thinking – yuh know I’ve been seeing analogies to Disney movies through this whole thing. Did they base this election on Alice in Wonderland?

    As I write this, I can see Obama as Pinocchio. Now just who was Gepetto? There’s a Gepetto behind this whole thing.

  133. Eggplant, you mis-underestimate (who said that, for 10 bonus points) the intelligence of people. If they are too stupid to get it, then they really are just too stupid, period. But I think most people are capable, they just get bombarded by the big lie machine. And our educational machine has been dumbed down so much over the last 25 years by the anti-science idealogues on the far right, that nobody reads, or considers anything more complex that the simplest of fairy tales, but they’re still smart enough to do so.

  134. I don’t know who Gepetto is in this, Still4Hill, but I’d bet my ass all strings lead to the Chicago Combine.

  135. The misogyny is back in full force. Does the media NOT get it? The wound has NOT healed — but please keep it going because it will just push more people over to McCain / Palin on November 4th.

    I am heading the the liquor store to stock up for November 4th. Pink Puma’s all around — Simo-Fish is buying !

  136. I swear that interview on CNBC was an audition tape for her. CNBC broke the story about her first AND that interview was aired that night. McCain had to see that interview before he picked her.

  137. Bonita and Still – the emptiness without Hillary and Bill is really having a profound effect on me. They both project wisdom, knowledge, courage and grace.

    What a dichomy between them and BZero – what a terrible loss for this country and it’s future.

  138. Sarah:

    Go run a campaign where you tell people they should ignore narratives.

    Let me know how it works out for you

  139. Sarah – You do realize that most Americans are not spending the time we all are watching msm and blogging about this election. I talked to my sister today – she has no idea what’s going on – she only watches the 6 o’clock news.

    That was why it was so important that PUMA cracked that glass (not not ceiling) wall and Darragh and Will Bower got on TV. PUMA got named on TV.

  140. I agree that narrative seems to be hard-wired into us. It’s not – nor should it be – the only way we get information. But haven’t all of us at some time been moved to see a greater truth thru a well-told play, poem or novel? Or a piece of music?

    It’s a tool that can be used to convey a truth or to propogate a lie. It can be used for good ends or bad. Dem politicians over the last 40 years have mostly been effin’ stupid about conveying their ideas in a way that resonates with others. That’s why voters’ poll answers show time after time that they support Dem positions, but too often vote for Rethugs.

    Isn’t that exactly why so many of us came to support Hillary Clinton – because she had the wonkiness to understand all the facts, yet could convey them in a way that even the more unsophisticated or less educated (note I did not say stupid) voters could grasp?

  141. Simo – Thanks for that clip from The Contender a week or so ago. I watched it. Amazing predictiveness – but then this had to happen some time – like the Berlin Wall had to fall.

  142. The predictable attempt to define Palin as a female Dan Quayle failed, but as a lover of oratorical gaffes I looked up some of my favorite Quayle quotes.

    “You all look like happy campers to me. Happy campers you are, happy campers you have been, and, as far as I am concerned, happy campers you will always be.”

    And my all time favorite:

    “What a waste it is to lose one’s mind. Or not to have a mind (as) being very wasteful. How true that is.”

  143. myiq2xu:

    Dude, all these ways of describing the process have outlived their usefullness. We need to be much more rigorous with how we use the language. Campaign. Race. Narrative. This is not a battle. Or a race. Or a campaign. We don’t need oversimplified stories. If we start treating people like they are intelligent (because they mostly are, more than the media and politicians give them credit for), they’ll respond with intelligence and thoughtfulness.

    It’s ok that your sister only watches the 6pm news. The problem is what is on the news.

    The politicians and media and ant-science religious nuts want to keep everyone in the dark. It’s in their best interest.

  144. sister: “she had the wonkiness to understand all the facts, yet could convey them in a way that even the more unsophisticated or less educated (note I did not say stupid) voters could grasp?”

    I’d call it plain talk. Obama’s 2004 speech was rhetoric. That failed him Thursday night because the SD’s told him to talk tough. It was so anti-climactic, wasn’t it?

    “ENOUGH!” “Scuse me? All he proved was that he can yell.

  145. SarahG,

    the mathematician, scientist and philosopher Henri Poincare once wrote that the ultimate reality for humans beings is not objects in themselves, but relationships between things. Those relationships are highly symbolic, with many references, more so for some people than for others. That’s why we see so much clucking around with John McCain’s announcement of Sarah Palin as his VP choice: so many different people wondering what tit means. We all imagine we see the reality of it, yet we only do so from our own perspective. Than we tell stories about it, to share and confirm our views. That’s what the narratives on this blog are so important – they are affirming and building strong relationships, strong shared realities about events.

    Look, by contrast, at the description of some of the base remarks from the Obama camp: simplistic, crude, foul and barely symbolic of anything. Well told stories, with deep references, intended to point out deep relationships, are very powerful.

    Obama’s oratory in my view hides his almost complete lack of ideas. Have you heard him stumble over health care?

    Presently, his supporters seem to just love the sound of his voice. When they awaken to the lack of message, of reality in his oratory, they will, I believe, desert him in droves. But there is little to no point in directly confronting Obama’s narratives- his supporters just think we don’t get it. We need to tell our own narratives, based on our own realities, to convey to them what we see, what constitutes our reality.

  146. sister of ye:
    “I agree that narrative seems to be hard-wired into us. It’s not – nor should it be – the only way we get information. But haven’t all of us at some time been moved to see a greater truth thru a well-told play, poem or novel? Or a piece of music?”

    Poetry, novels,etc are art. By artists. Not lies perpetrated to push a political party’s agenda. Oh that the party’s would give us art. Art has truth and beauty.

  147. john – quayle quotes – priceless. I hear he is going to be on Dancing with the Stars.

  148. Whoops! I meant “it” not “tit”. Freudian slip?

  149. parties, not party’s

  150. If you are trying to win an election, you want to convince people that any negative narratives/stereotypes about your candidate/party are false.

    You do not want to reinforce the belief that they are true.

    The GOP was successful in promoting the narrative that Democrats are unpatriotic and weak on national defense. That is a fact.

    Because of that, the patriotism of Republicans is assumed, but the patriotism of Democrats must be proved.

    If you are a Democrat, you defeat the narrative by:

    1. Proving the Republican is unpatriotic

    2. Proving that the Democrat is patriotic

    3. Both 1 & 2

  151. Eggplant:

    Both parties are full of sh*t. Can we agree on that much? I think we can. So, given that, I don’t know that I can trust a word out of any of their mouths. Maybe the work to be done here is to get control of the media machine. Thanks to the telecom act of ’96 we’ve become a national info-tainment state.

  152. Eggplant: “Obama’s oratory in my view hides his almost complete lack of ideas. Have you heard him stumble over health care?”

    Uh-bama stumbles over everything that is not scripted. BTW – I read somewhere that there is to be only one debate. True?

  153. myiq:
    “If you are a Democrat, you defeat the narrative by:

    1. Proving the Republican is unpatriotic

    2. Proving that the Democrat is patriotic

    3. Both 1 & 2”
    So it might be a good idea, when the National Anthem is playing, to put your hand over your heart.

  154. myiq2xu:

    I am suggesting that this whole business of “winning elections”, this paradigm, this model is the problem in of itself.

  155. Myiq – Excellent post. I am also fascinated with narratives and how they impact the race.

    I wrote this post in February of 2008 about Hillary’s, Obama’s and McCain’s narratives. Some things have changed, and some haven’t…

  156. #
    SarahG, on August 31st, 2008 at 9:26 pm Said:

    ” Thanks to the telecom act of ‘96 we’ve become a national info-tainment state.”

    Yes! And the media clowns – by and large – control the narratives – what can and will be said and when and where, to achieve what they want. I think this website is doing a fantastic job in developing alternative forms of expression. It may be an illusion, but it’s beginning to feel powerful. (Yes we can?) Sorry!

  157. SarahG:

    We can say that everyone should always behave morallly in every situation.

    But that does not change the fact that they won’t.

  158. “#

    Uh-bama stumbles over everything that is not scripted. BTW – I read somewhere that there is to be only one debate. True?

    Three Presidential..one Vice-Presidential debate.

  159. purplefinn,
    I tell you, it is sickening, what is allowed to be said over there. I won’t say much of what I have seen. You can see it for yourself. But when comments like “Sarah only got the nod, because she slept with McCain”, or “that’s WHY he would want her as his vp”, or “How could he answer that 3am call if Sarah and Cindy are having a cat-fight in the white house”, it’s too much! Those are not campaign attacks, those are personal disgusting comments and should NEVER be allowed.
    But they will be, because that is how Obama operates!

  160. Still4Hill –

    And wear a f*cking flag pin and not pretend you’re MORE patriotic for NOT wearing it.

    And not sit in the Church of God D*mn America for 20 years.

    And not have domestic anti-government terrorists as your best buddies.

  161. madamab – You hit the nail on the head once again with that one.

    Before Denver, everybody here kept saying “we’ew making history here.” Well we are –

    madamab – your posts show a lot of foresight.

  162. Eggplant:

    The internet is a great democratizer (if that’s a word) but it’s only a matter of time before it is declared subversive and seditious. Right now, I can guarantee that the security apparatus could easily monitor everybody on this site. And without court order, by use of a “letter” get all our info from our ISPs.

    Enjoy it while it lasts

  163. Thanks, Still4Hill! 🙂

  164. madamab: re patriotism – You go girl!! Right! (He’s f*cked on this issue).

  165. BTW — My mom & dad just got here from NOLA — they and the pets are tired but fine. Thanks for everyone’s prayers & good wishes.

  166. Sarah – I’m too old to worry about that sh*t – I had bugs on my phone and my parents phone was bugged during Nixon. They can spy all they want. I don’t lie.

  167. Hi, everyone! Good to read you, again. Had an unexpected house-guest so I missed the last two days. Just getting caught up with the posts. Excellent reading, so far. Hope all the warriors are back, safe and sound, in their homes – well rested and ready to start the new leg of the resistance movement. Love and hugs abounding to all my siblings.

  168. trist, that is a big reason why I laugh in the face of the sanctimonious Dems who tell me “Obama can’t be held responsible for everything his supporters say.”

    Bull. Shit. No, a politician is not responsible for any and every incident, directly. And if it were an occasional thing, I’d give him a pass.

    But his OWN WEBSITE has been a cesspoll of misogyny, and even worse, SEXUALLY VIOLENT misogyny for almost a year. I’ve seen shit on there on a REGULAR BASIS that would make you puke. Gang rape. Bondage and killing. The works. He and his campaign staff damn well know what has been going on, and they have done zero to call it out or stop it.

    So yes, at this point I hold Barack Obama himself DIRECTLY responsible for it. Damn straight I do.

  169. Still4Hill – He was f*cked as soon as those Wright tapes came out.

    This entire primary, since that time, and the entire Presidential race between him and McCain, has been a total waste of time. Seriously. Obama should have dropped out then, when he became, as SM says, “post-electable.”

  170. “Hey, where’d “Cheeto” come from?”

    I think “the cheeto as symbol” was first associated with chickenhawks, speaking of narratives. The image of a guy between 18 and 50 living in his parents’ basement playing D&D and typing long screeds about war and traitors and fifth columnists with Cheeto stained fingers. Overgrown frat boys with poor social skills emerging from the basement with orange stained pants and yelling at mom to make them a sandwich and make it quick, that sort of thing.

  171. narratives help us define our reality. Sometimes we can fight them if they prove to be unpalatable (i.e. NOBAMA), and sometimes we can identify and embrace them because they are delightful and true (i.e. Hillary AND McCain/Palin)….

    Democrats just aren’t smart enough yet. Too much testosterone (much apologies to all the good guys) with proof positive being their failure to embrace a real winner in Hillary Rodham Clinton.

    That is NOT our fault though, and since they denied us Hillary, we will GLADLY embrace Palin. Truth sometimes cuts so good….

    McCain/Palin 2008!
    Hillary Rodham Clinton 2012 and 2016!!!

  172. Now, I must confess this:

    I will be leaving this forum to watch the one show I DO enjoy, Mad Men, on AMC. I view it as an interesting historical artifact.

    “When television is good, nothing — not the theater, not the magazines or newspapers — nothing is better.
    But when television is bad, nothing is worse. I invite you to sit down in front of your television set when your station goes on the air and stay there for a day without a book, magazine, newspaper, profit-and-loss sheet or rating book to distract you — and keep your eyes glued to that set until the station signs off. I can assure you that you will observe a vast wasteland.”

    Newton Minow – Former FCC Chairman

  173. There is a variety of troll known as the “concern troll”

    Among their other attributes is the desire for ideological perfection.

    They worry and start aguments about the way things ought to be rather than deal with the way things are.

  174. Charles,

    How is it global? Where? Sorry, but I am physically unable to watch MSM- I only tuned in for Palin’s introduction-FOX ,they are the only ones I can watch and even there have found some Obama love fest.

  175. Still4Hill:
    I’m too old to worry about that sh*t – I had bugs on my phone and my parents phone was bugged during Nixon. They can spy all they want. I don’t lie.
    Yes, I don’t care how much they listen. I’m just not interested in being declared an enemy combatant for posting on a website and then being thrown in black prison with no access to the law. Don’t think it can’t happen? It is occuring AS WE SPEAK!

  176. WMCB, while I’m not surprised by it, it IS saddening that the majority of that crap is being said by other women!

    I’ll never understand it.

  177. myiq – I, too, have noticed such a creature. And sometimes this creature issues veiled threats as well.

    Just another sweetie come to us from the wonderful world of Obama.

  178. wmcb – One thing I haven’t done is check out his website. Every time I think I might venture there, my arms get paralyzed. What you’re saying about it is scary.

  179. Rightly or wrongly, narratives and stereotypes often determine how we interpret events.

    That is the premise of the movie Rashoman

  180. WMCB, Deval patrick ran a similar campaign around “New Politcs, Mr. Clean” and gosh darn, when he saw his supporters acting in a way he couldn’t condone, if he didn’t call them out on it. And we’re taking about mild bad behavior, nothing major. If someone booed his Republican opponent, he’d stop the rally dead in its tracks and say “You’re better than that. That’s not me. Don’t do that.” You know, rather than laugh, hold up his middle finger and launch into a chorus of “dirt off the Shoulder.” Nor did he have his campaign staff out trying to gin up phony smears.

  181. myiq2xu:

    There is a variety of troll known as the “concern troll”
    And there is also the rabid idealogue. For him, a traitor to the one true cause is hiding around every corner. Are your ideas doctrinally pure? Let this man be the arbiter.

  182. ***BREAKING***

    Congressman Jones Memorial-picture of Hillary

    Psalm that was read at the opening of the memorial.

    God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah. There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High. God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early. The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved: he uttered his voice, the earth melted.

  183. trist – You know, I’ve said some pretty nasty stuff about women too. If I don’t like what they believe in, sometimes I’ll go for the cheap shot. It’s easy and soooo approved of by society.

    I’m really, really ashamed that I ever fell into that trap. No more!!!

    PUMA POWER!!!!!

  184. SarahG:

    I used the non-gender-specific “they” and you respond with “him” and “this man”

    Are you a sex*st?

  185. No, I read your mini-bio on the about us page. You wrote the original post.

  186. crokkedO – I can’t open those

  187. SarahG

    Since I no longer watch cable “news” I discovered Mad Men also. Great show, but saddened at the accuracy of women’s treatment, and how it continues today. We really haven’t gotten that far.

  188. Sarah, enjoy your show.

    Though you’re leaving for now, I do want to point out that science isn’t free of narrative. It affects how facts are interpreted, sometimes to very odd results. Certain parts of the biological science are particularly vulnerable.

    This afternoon I was watching a show on Animal Planet about prarie dogs. And the narrrator solemnly intoned how prarie dog families consist of a few females and a dominant male. We all know what that means – one strong, assertive guy who keeps those little ladies in line. When one could just as easily interpret it as the females saying, well, we need one of them around to have kids; thank goodness we don’t have to put up with more!

    And let’s not even get into anthropology!

  189. Denise:

    That’s exactly why I watch that show. I can’t believe those times existed. The one couple who can’t concieve.. the husband, he says to his wife, “get back in here” and she follows like a puppy. And the drinking and the smoking. Everyone is a drunk. Like Yoko Ono’s song, Woman Is The Nigger Of The World.

  190. Denise – You mean we haven’t come a long way baby? One reason I don’t want to watch a show about that era was that sub-plot.

    I miss Carmela Soprano.

  191. You don’t change a narrative by “creating a new paradigm”, or altering your message, or stepping back thoughtfully, stroking your beard, and saying “Hmmmm……maybe if we approach it his way…”

    You change a narrative by getting off your ass, climbing down from that ivory tower, and doing something CONCRETE that all the uneducated and poorly informed can SEE for what it is.

    For instance, if McCain and Palin do things right, they may single-handedly change the narrative that all Republicans are money-grubbing, pork-gorging party loyalists who are dirty to the bone and in bed with anyone who will give them a kickback.

    And if they do, the Dems are fucked for a long time to come.

  192. SarahG:

    What does my mini-bio have to do with anything?

    Are you treating it like a narrative?

  193. yay Angie, glad for your parents & pets!

    myiq, I’ve been fascinated for a couple of years now with GOP “framing” which I think is the same or similar to creating narratives. they name things, and name them well: clear skies, no child left behind, partial birth abortion, healthy forests, death tax, etc.

    pro-life was inspired – a lack of support for their position was “anti-life”?

    I’ve wondered for years why the GOP just got to keep doing this – naming and framing everything – and the democrats never once got in there first and claimed and defined an issue.

    lame party – they’d rather react (with outrage!) than act first.

  194. Your bio says “we don’t know what HE does for a living”. Dude, it ain’t no big thing.

  195. sister:
    “When one could just as easily interpret it as the females saying, well, we need one of them around to have kids; thank goodness we don’t have to put up with more!”

    Prairie dogs – Amazons of the underground.

  196. Holla!

  197. Sister of ye – I was watching “Super Pride,” about a pride of 22 lions in the Serengeti. The male lions were barely mentioned or shown. It was quite remarkable! 🙂

  198. Posted in the wrong thread. The effect of the hurricane – may change the narrative in a good way for the GOP:

  199. WMCB:
    You don’t change a narrative by “creating a new paradigm”, or altering your message, or stepping back thoughtfully, stroking your beard, and saying “Hmmmm……maybe if we approach it his way…”
    And maybe, just maybe, you have to be prepared to get your head busted in the street. Strap up!

  200. Holla for good, for now.

  201. SarahG:

    If you are concerned about how I earn my living, I am a freelance mortician.

    But I do accept donations

  202. edge – There’s the rub – this was the chance for the top of the dem tickets to take some step – make some gesture – carpe diem. Nada.

    And I don’t want to see Biden doing it – he’s not really the applicant.

  203. I was born strapped. When I was a little bitty girl, my grandpa pronounced me “a pistol”, and I have not changed.

  204. kiki – I think one of the reasons the Dean Democrats hate Hillary is because she is a master of framing. First she says it, then she does it. See: FISA. She said she’d vote against it, then she did.


    The experience Obama lacks is the experience of saying something, then doing something to back it up. Both McCain and Palin have that experience.

    Game over.

  205. SarahG

    I know, even though there is an undercurrent of sadness, I am compelled to watch. I’ve been watching their 2nd season marathon today, the smoking that went on!

    I miss the Sopranos also, though Carmela would get on my nerves sometimes, my favorite was Tony, warts and all.

  206. MIYQ, Dude, let it go! Gotta go. Mad Men is on. I gots to study the ancient ones!

  207. SarahG:

    Exactly how many times have you had your head busted?

    That might explain a lot.

  208. madamab, you know a while ago I was having a talk about something else that was going on in the news about attacks on another woman. Damn I can’t remember who. But I was pointing out that yes, when it comes to women it just IS more acceptable to attack them. And for some reason it’s more enjoyable. You just have to look at all the derogatory names there are for women, and compare them to how many there are for men. I’m not going to list them. But just try it. Make a list and see. About the only thing for a guy is “dog” or “gigolo”, both of which, guys tend to take as compliments. No, for a guy, the biggest way to insult HIM is to compare him to being a woman, or a girl. “you little girly man” ect.

    And then I’ll notice the subtly in which the message is delivered to society how guys should be the winners, and girls not so much.
    Like have you ever noticed that if a commercial comes on for a kids board game like monopoly or something, and the children playing are a mixture of boys and girls, even if it’s a game directed at very young children, invariably if the end of the commercial shows a boy winning, they have him jump up, yelling “I won, I won” BUT if it’s a girl, she might just sheepishly smile, almost embarrassed she beat everyone else and that’s WHEN they let her win. In fact if it’s ALL girls there rarely IS a winner, they’re all about the bonding over the game then.

    You could get into all the messages this sends to kids on many levels, but I won’t. Just something I noticed.

    Well, anyway, I think we can all try to be nicer to each other. I’m going to.
    Gotta go, but have a good night all!

  209. Sarah:
    And maybe, just maybe, you have to be prepared to get your head busted in the street. Strap up!
    A lot of us have been there before, too. Nothing changes.

  210. SarahG:

    What is the “it” you want me to set free?

  211. I’ve had the bite my tongue so much over the past 2 days. Talking w/ my Obama supporting friends and family – they are livid!!! They are besides themselves!! “The nerve of the repugs to put that inexperienced, former beauty queen one heartbeat away from the presidency.” It’s been quite a trip.

  212. Denise – I know, I loved Tony. His fav, “Senator Sanatorium” was just on w/ Hannity. I collected his malaprops.

  213. MIYIQ what ever it is you’re trippin about. Now really ,H.O.L.L.A.!!! got to go!

  214. elixir: tell ’em not to vote for her then. 😉

  215. Myiq:

    I just came around to read the entire post and it’s fantastic.

    I had a conversation with a good friend today, a lawyer who’s independent but whose parent are proud members of the Rightwing intelligentsia.

    First, they are very happy about the pick, 2nd they are more than appalled by the way the “Left” greeted this woman.
    They spent the entire lunch explaining to me how much the Left has more than confirmed the cliches of “elitists”, “arrogant”, “dismissive” towards people who don’t share their “values”, and most of all, “damn hypocrites” when it comes to respect towards women and staying out of their private lives.

    The worst part of the whole conversation was that I agreed with them.

  216. “Biden and Obama campaigned in Ohio Sunday.
    TOLEDO, Ohio (CNN) – Joe Biden says there are obvious differences between himself and fellow vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, but they’re not just on policy. She’s good-looking.”

    Condescending, sexist fucker.

  217. trist:

    You forgot the derogatory names related to homosexuality, but the intent in using them is the same.

    F*g = P*ssy

  218. New post up. 🙂

  219. madama, I think what I meant, and didn’t express so well (because I’m not a republican! ) is naming issues in a way that frames or defines them as “good” or “bad”

    a major example I didn’t even think of is “war on terror” – calling it a WAR allowed Bush to assume all kinds of powers, not to mention important title (war president) that calling it an investigation, for example, would certainbly have precluded

    and terror? it’s a concept, so a war on it lasts as long as the person who thought it up and framed it wants it to.
    it can’t be defined in terms of defeating it. we can’t define at what point that “war” is won.

  220. “The worst part of the whole conversation was that I agreed with them.” MABlue, I know the feeling.

    And damn! Isn’t this a strange position to be in?

  221. elixir: Why do they care who the GOP nominates? That’s so weird.
    That’s like Europe being in the tank for Obama. I heard that from a colleague who was over there in late May, then they had this little survey in today’s NY Times. News flash – Europe doesn’t get to vote in this.

  222. BTW – Just because they’re right about the Obamacrat wing of the Party, doesn’t mean we’re not right about the George Bush wing of the Party.

    There are extremist, hateful jerks on both the left and the right. My only shock was that we had them too – and we thought they were our friends.


  223. Now that PUMA has become a household word, maybe we should consider collecting and posting each week the 1-3 IRRESPONSIBLE/BIASED JOURNALIST INFRACTIONS, so that rather than just feel angry, we both illustrate the problem (that so many don’t get) and “out” the offender. We can name the violator(s) with clear, calm, reasons (which are already in our posts) on our webpage.
    Now that the DNC platform talks about wanting to denounce sexism (but I prefer the general heading of “irresponsible/biased jounalism” or the like) perhaps they will take note.

    Remember how Hillary got some large slew of governors(?) to sign onto a letter denouncing Obama’s “bitter, guns and God” remark? Why not identify one howler each week and get a LIST OF RESPECTED journalists/spokespeople/representatives to DENOUNCE the remark in the same way Hillary got them to denounce Obama’s remark. It has to hurt, and not be considered a joke or worse, a badge of honor.

  224. HOLLA?

    Is that anything like “Sleepy Hollow?”

    Or is it more like “Butcher Holler?”

    I wasn’t born a coal miner’s daughter.

  225. Still
    I loved the intervention they did on Christopher, remember? Everyone got together to help him out with his drug addiction
    but ended up beating the crap out of him.
    I sometimes feel that is the intervention needed to wean Obots off the Kool-aid

  226. Hi, I’ve been reading this site for a while and now have time to start posting so thought I’d introduce myself. Kudos on the site, it’s an enjoyable read. And it is good to know there are so many people as frustrated as I am.

    I’m a 30-year-old male, Independent centrist, living in Boston, a white collar professional with a graduate degree… so I don’t fit into the media stereotype of the old poor rural uneducated racist Hillary supporter (then again, who does?). I’ve spent the last eight months frustrated with the media and the Democratic party elite, and now I’m just sad.

    I’m sad because now I have to pick between an incompetent, arrogant newbie Democrat or an old pandering trigger-happy Republican with a running mate who is too conservative for me.

    I’m sad because Hillary was the best presidential candidate we have had in recent history. She consistently polled higher than the GOP candidate and received more votes than any primary candidate in history, including The Annointed One Barack Obama. And yet shewas thrown aside by the DNC and the media.

    I’m sad because a woman who has spent 35 years fighting for Americans, despite going through so much personal pain, was cast as a villain by the mainstream media and stabbed in the back by the party she and her husband elevated for the last 16 years.

    I’m sad because even though I’m an Independent, I’ve always liked the Democratic party’s advocacy of women, minorities, gays, everyone the conservatives seemingly kept down, and yet now the Democratic party elite are showing their true sexism and I feel like a kid who just learned Santa isn’t real.

    It’s clear what happened. Howard Dean, along with the other DNC Northeast Liberal Elite, hates the Clintons and wanted to stop Hillary from getting the presidency. But the media had a narrative. The first woman president, a Clinton, would take back the white house. So Howard restructured the primary order to allow South Carolina to go before Super Tuesday (citing “racial diversity” as the reason) and then Obama suddenly decided he would run. At first he was trailing behind, but then he and Howard decided to throw a bunch of cash and moveon.org money into the smaller caucuses (which are mostly attended by single young people, Obama’s base, and not Hillary’s base of the elderly, working moms or second shift blue collar workers). After that worked, the mainstream media had a lightbulb moment. A well-spoken, charismatic, young Kennedy-esque candidate who was also black? Wow! What’s better than the first female president? The first black president! And as far as ratings and sensationalism go, nothing beats a race war. So after Obama showed in Iowa (with dirty tricks, so I hear) that he was viable, the media narrative changed. Now it was “poor black kid grows up and fights racism to become the first black president.” Great. Now all that was needed was a white racist villain. So the media (and Donna Brazile) twisted everything the Clintons said and did to be racist. Every exit poll was about race (and not gender), so every state that voted for Hillary could be painted as being filled with ignorant, uneducated, rural racist rubes (say that three times fast!). Then the superdelegates were bought and pressured into carrying Obama over the finish line, despite Hillary’s lead in the popular vote (which is a raw representation of the will of the people, as opposed to a delegate count manipulated by meaningless caucuses), her winning all the important states, and her polling higher than the GOP candidate in both the popular vote and electoral math.

    Obama is a manufactured candidate. Hillary’s ability to endure the media abandoning and then attacking her every day shows that she is the real deal. And now the narrative is “unity,” yet the polls show anything but. Instead, there is division and today McCain jumped into the lead for the first time. McCain took the lead the weekend after Obama’s convention. That is a bad sign for Obama, and it throws the unity thing out the window.

    The Northeast Liberal Elite wanted the Clintons out of the party even though Bill got the party two presidential election victories for the first time since FDR and Hillary brought more people to the polls than any candidate in history. Well, that’s the type of “intelligence” that will hand the white house to the Republicans in the year when the Democrats supposedly couldn’t lose.

    McCain scares me, and I don’t like the idea of someone as socially conservative as Plain so close to the president. But if McCain wins, it will be Obama’s fault for dismissing Hillary and her voters and for not selecting her as VP. The Obamabots will try to blame Hillary, as they have already implied, but it will be Obama’s fault. And if that happens, I’d like to see Hillary as Senate Majority Leader to fight McCain and Palin for four years and the Hillary for president in 2012.

  227. no, kiki – you said it perfectly, and I agreed with every word! 🙂

    I just started riffing on what you said and going in a different direction. Sorry if I was confusing. 🙂

  228. hatshepsut:

    I do a “Clown of the Week” but that’s something totally different

  229. I am mulling things over. A lifelong democrat, I had reached the point where I was ready to vote for McCain. I was hoping for a moderate Repub vp.
    Brilliant as I think the repub choice for VP is, I don’t know if I can now pull the lever or if I will not vote the top of the ticket.

    I admire Palin and think she is very likable.
    However, my daughter raised a significant issue I hadn’t really thought thru. We may have a filibuster proof majority in congress to protect court appointments for the first TWO years. but what happens after that? If the dem lose their majority, we could have an evangelical Christian as president.
    The question I have about Palin is does she believe in the separation of church and State?

    To what degreee does she respect other people’s moral and religious beliefs as relates to some of these issues important to Democrats?

  230. Denise:

    The ass-whipping may not be necessary but it would sure help us feel better.

  231. I hope y’all don’t mind my intrusions, however, I learned of PUMA through a co-worker who supported Hillary and her and I agree about 80% of the time on issues. I guess she’s a conservative Dem and I’m a moderate Rep.

    The Dems in our County had a disastrous convention and had to shut it down and come back another day (according to her so everyone had the “message”). We had a great convention and all was well, until our State Convention, which supposedly got “hijacked” by the Ron Paul supporters and it got shut down. I say supposedly because the fact of the matter is they outwitted and outsmarted the administration every step of the way and our state would have been Ron Paul. Our party leaders tried to shut their delegates out, but the RNC stepped in and gave them 4 seats to the National Convention (which was the equivalent of the percentage of votes he received) and neither faction is happy about it.

    I digress, our Unions supported Obama. They took pictures of everyone supporting Hillary at Caucuses, and if they were Union employed, the rumors spread they were being harassed. That was the extent of what I knew, didn’t realize this was going on nationally.

    Since I’m late to all this, my question to all of you is do you believe George Soros a.k.a. MoveOn is behind the “Obama love fest”? I honestly do.

    He makes huge donations to all candidates he deems worthy, refuse to give your super delegate vote to Obama and that money will be stripped away.

    Hillary can’t and won’t be controlled by George Soros; Barack Obama is in his pocket.

    I could be wrong here, but that was my initial thoughts when things started getting ugly – that Hillary wasn’t playing by the MoveOn playbook and they were coming out in full attack mode.

    BTW, MoveOn moved her in 2004 and our politics went from contentious to downright very ugly since they arrived.

  232. I’ve noticed over the last few years that a lot of male-centric explanations in animal behavior are falling by the wayside. I believe it has to do with more women getting into science, and with a better feminist awareness overall that has given men in science a more open perspective.

    Let’s face it, a lot of basics of our science understanding was developed in the 1800s and even 1900s by upper-class European men who had the leisure to think of something other than scratching out a living. It made less of a difference in physics and chemistry, but we’re just starting to get past the worst of it in fields like anthropology and psychology.

    A couple of years ago I started watching a BBC program about gender differences that cited make-up use by modern young British women and asserted that it was something intrinsic to women back to the cave days. As if we have any real idea of what prehistoric life was like. And it totally ignored societies like early Egyptian and Sumerian where both sexes used make-up. That’s the point where I turned it off.

  233. sister of ye, on August 31st, 2008 at 9:52 pm Said:

    This afternoon I was watching a show on Animal Planet about prarie dogs. And the narrrator solemnly intoned how prarie dog families consist of a few females and a dominant male. We all know what that means – one strong, assertive guy who keeps those little ladies in line. When one could just as easily interpret it as the females saying, well, we need one of them around to have kids; thank goodness we don’t have to put up with more!

    sister of ye = that is one of the reasons I like being a beekeeper. Female society, drones only kept around till winter then escorted out of the hive, where of course they are unable to care for themselves and soon die.
    Every year I feel sorry for them, a bit. This year, maybe not so much.

  234. @MYIQ

    heh, heh

  235. Republican Woman: I have no idea who you are, or if you are even legitmate because we have “visitors” here who are undercover so to speak, but what you say resonates. We all may differ on certain issues, but the bottom line is that we area all Americans. When a primary is stolen, or votes are not counted, or when candidates are reduces to relying on regurgitated bile, the electorate, no matter party label you wear, needs to stand up and be counted.

    What happens to one can happen to all in a blink of an eye.

  236. myiq2xu, I agree the Obamabots are launching cheap attacks on Palin.

    Don’t get me wrong. I do not want Palin as vice president and certainly don’t want her as vice president. But only because she is too conservative for my taste. She has passionately fought gay rights and is an enemy of the environment and wildlife. But why not go after her on THOSE issues? Why not explain to the voters, with civility (a word unrecognizable to Obamabots), that they should be concerned about Palin because she is so right wing on the issues? I got into an argument with an Obamabot the other night who attacked Palin for running for VP with a Down Syndrome baby. This supposedly “progressive” Obamabot jackass actually said that a woman with small children should not be president. I explained to him that Obama has two lovely young daughters, and he said that Michelle takes care of them. I had to explain to him how Todd Palin could take care of the Palin kids just like Michelle takes care of the Obama girls, and that Michelle worked full time as well. These “progressive” Obamabots are so full of themselves that they don’t even realize how sexist they are.

    This election has shown us that while anything can be twisted to cry racism and the race card is very effective, sexism is not only still aliove but is very acceptable, in the Democratic party no less. And now that Hillary and Gerladine Fararro have publicly congratulated Palin on her nomination (not on her stance on the issues, just on her history making nomination), the Obamabots are out for Hillary and Geraldine’s blood again. It’s sickening.

    Palin’s record on the issues is so extremist, conservative and out of the mainstream that there uis plenty of fodder there for the Democrats. Why they feel the need to bring their attacks to a low level is beyond me.

  237. Renegade, re: the low level attacks.. I think it’s all they know how to do. Axelrod doesn’t run campaigns based on the issues, and the blogs have just devolved very quickly (the big ones) into mobs who go scorched-earth as soon as they have a target – they don’t know how to do anything else, and are pretty much in need of a new target all the time. I wonder if there might be some interesting information on the Deval Patrick v Kerry Healey race, just the tone of it, how they portrayed her.

  238. imustprotest, on August 31st, 2008 at 9:07 pm Said:

    Thank you for posting the Colmes link. I am livid as well. I posted about this on GretaWire, HireHeels, The Confluence, etc, but I wanted to contact him directly. The ACLU, the AMA, NOW, and every parents group of special needs children should be on the airwaves right now raising holy hell about his comments and Roberts’ comments on CNN. They’ve exploited a child with Downs Syndrome for political leverage. The sheer inhumanity we have seen time and again in this election is a scar and a shame to our country.

  239. One of the narratives that has fascinated me is a story that was specifically omitted from the Book of Genesis: the story of Lilith. She was supposed to be the female human created simultaneously with the first male human. But she couldn’t stand having the man try to boss her around that she voluntarily left the garden of Eden and refused to return even when angels were sent to persuade her. So the man begged the creator to create for him a woman taken from his body so that there was no doubt that she is supposed to obey him. Thus, the second version of the creation after Genesis 2:2. There is no mention of Lilith in the bible except once in the book of Isaiah, and no explanations whatsoever.

    So I think that as far as American males are concerned, many, especially those who have attained positions of power in the media, are still terrified with the notion of a beautiful, intelligent woman with guts. They showed it with Hillary Clinton and now with Sara Palin. The verbal assault, is just irrational. It is the only way I could explain it.

  240. Palin’s supporters in Alaska are called “Palinistas”.

    I guess we have Bidenists.

    MoDo’s column today has one paragraph about the Palin selection:

    “Sheer Heaven”.

    The narrative is the press is back on board the McCain Express – they are awakened, excited, and rarin’ to go. Just like we are here at The Confluence.

  241. Renegade said “Palin’s record on the issues is so extremist, conservative and out of the mainstream ”

    I have done some research and I don’t think this is correct. She is conservative and I don’t agree with her about some issues, but extremist I don’ think so. Maybe her creationsism beliefs only.

    BTW, who do you think should be VP in ’09.

  242. madamab, I knew we were on the same, or at least a similar, page.

    I read more than I comment and I hope y’all can get a cocktail party together – how cool!

    oy, why am I stuck here in Alabama?

  243. It bothers me that they (used to be we) — the Dems blew a narrative that rightly belonged to us–as the party of feminists and champions of underdogs and the disenfranchised. Gone Gone Gone.

    And that Ivy League mentality really chaps my …. (Charles, still trying to stay classy). I have always bristled at the “Best and Brightest” label.

  244. Joanie, I’m not sure we owned that narrative. I think we the hoi poilloi claimed it and thought the bigwigs had our backs, but they never did.

  245. Angry Artist writes:

    The question I have about Palin is does she believe in the separation of church and State?

    Does Obama? He’s at the top of the ticket. I think McCain does.

    Obama wants to expand Bush’s Faith-based initiatives. I trust McCain more on the church issues.

  246. Obama wants to expand Bush’s Faith-based initiatives as well, only he wants to make sure the Trinity Church receives some of that money. That’s the last thing we need. I find the Trinity Church to be racists.

    I feel really bad for anyone of color who supported HRC – can you imagine the harassment they have gone through. So sad.

  247. Hmmm….

  248. Did I screw things up?

    Sorry, didn’t mean to go off like that!

    Guess I’ll just get another gin & tonic and shut my mouth….

  249. @ Renegade,

    Your first comment should be a post in itself. Well done and I second your thoughts.

    Thanks for joining the conversation.

  250. myiq2xu
    Thanks for the excellent essay. You’ve summed up and made clear some of the things I’ve been thinking and brought up new ideas I hadn’t considered. Thanks. You all have moderated my opinion of what passes for democratic debate on the internet and restored a measure of faith in my fellow citizens.

    A genuine narrative is reality distilled. It is not a poll-tested, manufactured construct, but the essence of the thing it symbolizes.

    “Poetry, novels,etc are art. By artists. Not lies perpetrated to push a political party’s agenda. Oh that the party’s would give us art. Art has truth and beauty.”

    As a professional artist I suggest you go see Picasso’s “Guernica” and Delacroix’ “Liberty Leading the People.” A primary function of art in society is political persuasion. Don’t be lulled by pretty pictures. I won’t vote for Obama but I’ll admit that his his red-white-and-blue stylized portrait posters sure look cool.

    I’m an American and a Republican. I don’t know why I am tarred with the label “Rethug,” (even in this thread). I heard Senator Biden tell a story about how his mother sent him out to confront a neighborhood bully and “bloody his nose.”

    Not for a moment would I ever think that my wife would follow sheepishly when ordered, nor would it occur to me to try it. I admire and respect smart courageous independent-minded women: my grandmother, mother, sisters, and wife would attest to that. They’re Republicans too.

    Everyone I’ve spoken with this weekend is thrilled at Governor Palin’s candidacy. She is the first national politician I can relate to.

    My sisters both were an aggressive ballplayers in school; I know how hard they worked and what they learned about working as a team.

    I worked through high school and saved for years to attend a state land-grant university; I’m sure the University of Idaho is a fine school too and I can’t figure out how a party that supposedly is of “the people” is so snotty about not going Ivy and not being born rich.

    The impression I’ve developed over the past ten years is of an “Animal Farm” mentality in the Democratic Party — “Everyone is equal, but some are more equal than others.”

    I would not have voted for Senator Clinton by I was disgusted by the way she was treated and could not understand why anyone for a party supposedly for women’s rights would allow that treatment. I can assure you that it will not be allowed to

    continue with Governor Palin much longer. Republicans are tarred with the misogynist brush over and over, but I’ve never seen it among any of the people I know, and not in politics either. The stereotype is wrong.

    As for the “left” being tolerant, look to the response to Senator Craig’s arrest. Hypocrisy.

    Racist? The attacks on Secretary of State Rice on all fronts aren’t decent to repeat.

    A “people’s candidate” whose entire movement is based on hope for CHANGE (whatever the heck that means) selects a guy who’s been in the Senate since 1973. A Republican selects the candidate who is Alaska’s military Commander in Chief (and they have more duty in national defense than most any other state — look it up) and she is damned with faint praise as “good-looking,” and “a good mother?”

    I liked the posts about judo — give them enough rope to hang themselves. The republican campaign only has to keep the discussion on facts and real accomplishment.

    This does seem like Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, except the cigar-smoking old boys club isn’t backing the Boy Scout — she’s earned the right on her own merit! If she ever has to filibuster (she will be President of the Senate) to make sure right triumphs, THIS Boy Scout will get out his little red wagon to carry news and rally the people for her in spite of the media blitz against her. (Think about it — even back in the 30s the news media were in the pocket of the bad guys…)

  251. “The question I have about Palin is does she believe in the separation of church and State? To what degree does she respect other people’s moral and religious beliefs as relates to some of these issues important to Democrats?”

    She must swear to uphold and defend the Constitution: “Amendment I Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/bill_of_rights_transcript.html

    Obama’s attack on that radio station in Chicago make it clear to me what he thinks of the First Amendment right to free speech.

  252. “I wonder if there might be some interesting information on the Deval Patrick v Kerry Healey race, just the tone of it, how they portrayed her.”

    They didn’t do anything to her, she ran a dirty campaign with “Black man in the parking garage coming to get you” kind of stuff, and sending a bunch of people who looked like skinheads in orange jumpsuits to Patrick’s house, etc. But patrick took the high road. I’m sure that Axlerod was urging him to get sleazy, but he seems like a decent person. He pretty much focused on positive stuff about himself while she attacked him.

  253. […] Narrative Part II Posted in Uncategorized by Daniel on September 7th, 2008 This post over at The Confluence caught my attention as it was under related topics for my prior post. It is […]

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