“Race”-ing Backwards

Geraldine Ferraro, long adored by the liberal elite, was quickly thrown to the wolves this week for daring to discuss race as an issue in this election.  Here’s her statement that drew so much ire from the Obama camp:

 “If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position,” she continued. “And if he was a woman (of any color) he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept.”

These remarks, of course, drew instant rebuke from Obama supporters and pundits alike (hard to tell the difference nowadays) who took to referring to Ferraro as a bigot who was typical of the Clinton campaign’s “racist kneecapping.”  Ferraro’s words were of course, interpreted for the easily gullible to mean “Obama’s lucky to be a black man.” 

As I commented on a post at Forgotten Beatitudes, that is clearly not what Ferraro said.  What she said was that Obama is lucky to be who he is, not what he is.  As in, who he is at this point in time.  Not how he got there.  Not whatever privations he may have suffered as the child of a single mother.  Not the racism he encountered along his path to success.  No, her point was that at this point in history, with so many groups of American Society feeling disenfranchised, it’s extremely fortuitous that he is so different from the current president–and yes, that includes skin color. 

Just because I happen to agree to a point with what Ferraro said doesn’t mean she’s necessarily correct.  But misconstruing her position as racist will only hurt the Democratic Party in the long run.  She obviously was not clear enough in her thought process for a nation that feeds its mind with sound bytes.  What’s truly astounding about all of this is that we cannot even discuss whether race is a factor in the nomination process without being branded as racists.  Following that line of reasoning to its logical conclusion, one should not be able to discuss whether religion is a factor, either, without being branded apostates; should not be able to discuss whether candidates personal financing is a factor, without being branded classists; should not be able to discuss anything without being branded something else

As QJ said,

Ferraro’s point [was] that long time Clinton supporters are jumping ship on the flimsiest of excuses for no other reason that Obama is black and Hillary is white. How legitimate that point is, I’m not sure, but wouldn’t it be nice if we could actually consider it instead of reaching for the long knives?

That would require a mature discussion of race in this country. 

For once, someone at the Huffington Post gets it right on this:

The great strength of the Obama campaign has rested squarely on his pitch that he’s the post-civil rights guy, with a broad based, issue driven, non-racial appeal. That’s the front door, image enhancing spin. The back door, under the table pitch is to subtly play race at every turn. Whether it’s getting Oprah to nakedly and blatantly rev up blacks on the campaign trail, or hint to black audiences about his poverty and civil rights work, or to cast a different cadence of speech when he’s talking to black groups, or most importantly to snatch at every chance to turn even the slightest reference to race by Clinton or anyone in her camp, such as Ferraro, into a federal case.
This tired act is wearing thin and thankfully a few that have not totally abandoned all sense of reason are seeing through this melodrama. In an editorial, “Obama and the Race Card,” the Wall Street Journal got it right. It blistered Obama for the wrong headed, and self-serving dictum that if anybody white dares bring up race they automatically will be branded as the second coming of David Duke (my characterization). Yet, it’s totally permissible ala the Lyndon Johnson blast at Clinton for the Obama campaign to bring up race when and wherever it’s deemed in their interest. —Earl Ofari Hutchinson

Ah, the politics of change: do as I say, not as I do.  Second verse, same as the first. 

I ask you, is it not inherently racist to say, “You can’t discuss race if you’re white?”  Because that is exactly what the essence of this boils down to. 

Geraldine Ferraro, former Vice Presidential candidate herself, congresswoman, and tireless advocate of civil rights–vetted by the Democratic party 20 years ago–painted as a racist for merely acknowleding that in the current climate, Obama’s race is helping him in the nomination process.  Yet Obama’s own pastor, a man he’s quoted as calling “a mentor” as well as a “an old uncle who sometimes will say things that I (Obama) don’t agree with,” can discuss race until the cows come home without half of the scorn from those who objected so much to Ferraro’s remarks. 

Where I think Ferraro missed the mark, however, was in failing to take her point further.  Obama’s luck isn’t merely in who he is and how he is positioned at this point in history.  His real luck lies in this country’s extreme dissatisfaction with the norm, and his mass appeal as potentially the nation’s first PC President.  And Ferraro was right: Obama would not be where he is right now if not in part for his skin color, his sex, and his age. 

We seem to forget that even in this country, African-Americans had the constitutional right to vote over fifty years before women did.  We are a nation that has been historically more sexist than racist.  Those are plain, cold facts that uppity-minded liberals refuse to admit because they’re distasteful.  Was voting easy for blacks?  Obviously not.  But no woman in the USA could vote until 1918.  The youth of today aren’t constantly barraged with messages they recognize as sexism–at least not nearly so much as those they recognize as racism.  And while neither prejudice is better or worse than the other, it is the more obvious racism that draws youth to object loudly and flock to a banner, without really recognizing the struggle that goes on for women to this very day. 

“Change” is very appealing to youth, as has been historically demonstrated by the trend of Americans to vote more liberally in their youth than in their later years.  Given the choice between two candidates, young voters will chose the one who more obviously embodies the PC solution to what they perceive as societal inequality. 

And once again the women get left behind.

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58 thoughts on ““Race”-ing Backwards

  1. How could you possibly take Ferraro’s comments as anything but racist? Also, she said the same thing about Jesse Jackson years ago.
    And what’s wrong with Oprah supporting whoever she wants? Aren’t we still living in America?

  2. Gee, Kip, if you read the post you can see how to take Ferraro’s comments as not inherently racist. Unless you deem ANY discussion of race as racist, which is patently foolish.

    I never said there’s anything wrong with Oprah supporting whomever she wants. That wasn’t the point of the quote–and the quote that mentions Oprah? Written by a black man, if you click the link.

    Those who think will understand. Those who don’t think leave petulant comments.

  3. It’s amazing to me how the Obama camp, mostly its supporters, haven’t had boo to say about race when the media shadowboxes him as “The First Black President”. Then, when Ferraro expresses her frustration at long term Hillary supporters suddenly switching sides seemingly on the basis of race (and, consequently, now that it looks like Obama has a shot), suddenly she’s a card-carrying member of the KKK and 40 years of work for the Democrat Party and progressive liberal causes is chucked out the window.

    Biggest issue with the Obama campaign? Obama supporters.

  4. Ferraro is saying nothing more than a person who points out that a black student admitted to law school who had lower grades than others, but who got points based on skin color, would not have been admitted had they been white.

    Is that really “racist” – or simply telling the painful truth, that if Obama were a white male, he would have been dumped on the curb about ten primaries ago, along with Biden et al., who were all more experienced and had better records, but who lacked the correct skin color or gender?

  5. Don’t get me started about Biden being neglected by just about EVERYBODY in the media. THERE’s the man who should be president. Foibles be damned.

    As to your comparison to affirmative action, NDT, I don’t wish to go there. I think there is a time and place for affirmative action as a necessary evil to equalize society at large–though by the very fact of Obama’s popularity, that time may be passing as we speak–but the office of POTUS isn’t the same thing. It’s voted for, for one thing, not strictly interviewed then hired.

    And the widespread portrayals of Ferraro’s expression are completely off base. Just look at the blog of Kip, above commenter, who states:

    “when former vice-presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro says if Barack weren’t black nobody would be voting for him”

    Well, that would be something, but that’s NOT what she said!

    Critical thinking seems truly damned. That’s sad, too, because I was quite proud of this particular post. Did a 2nd draft and everything. 🙂

  6. Pingback: My God « I Must Be Dreaming

  7. As I noted in my comments on Rev. Wright (Obama’s pastor), some of the inflamatory statements have some truth to them. They’re politically unwise, but they’re not necessarily false. Or at least, there’s a degree of space for debate and interpretation.

    And I think the situation with Ferraro is similar in many respects. However, just as Wright’s comments will cause an uproar against Obama, Ferraro’s analysis has gotten Hillary in a great deal of trouble.

    And since Hillary is running on 35 years of experience, why couldn’t she forsee that talking about race is a bad idea in a Democratic primary? Didn’t that disasterous incident with Bill in SC tell her something about how the Democrats would react to racially charged campaign tactics?

  8. John, the problem is that Obama has publicly claimed that Wright’s statements are wrong. So it doesn’t matter whether you can squeeze in a piece of space for interpretation.

    Whatever trouble Clinton got in over Ferraro, Rev. Wright reversed it. I think this will hurt Obama more than Clinton.

  9. And since Hillary is running on 35 years of experience, why couldn’t she forsee that talking about race is a bad idea in a Democratic primary? Didn’t that disasterous incident with Bill in SC tell her something about how the Democrats would react to racially charged campaign tactics?

    If you go back and watch how the media has played this, Hillary had no choice but talk about race. Obama himself has said that race and gender are certainly factors that come into play. But it’s the media that started asking, “will race be a factor?” And everyone started asking that question, kept asking that question, until it became a red herring that demanded addressing. Bill certainly didn’t help with his comments.

    I’m really going to hate voting for McCain, you know. I’ve never seriously considered not voting, but I am so disappointed in the choices this year that I don’t know what to do.

  10. Jamie, you’ll get objection from me when it comes to critiques of the media coverage. However, I think she could’ve handled it better.

    Certainly, television reporting of Election 2008 can be summed up thusly:

    “Martin Luther King….

    Change…

    McCain too old and senile…

    Hope…

    Hillary unelectable…

    Yes, we can…

    Racism…

    I’m Keith Olbermann in New York. Good Night.”

  11. Wow, are we really debating something as simple as this? Are Americans really this far into the dark ages in terms of a racial perspective? Lets pretend for a moment that Barrack Obama would obviously not be where he is without being Black. Even if that were true, it would still be extremely racist and offensive to publicly state such a thing! But, when we examine the evidence, it isn’t even obvious that this is the case. In fact, if you look at all the evidence, it is actually more likely that Barrack Obama’s race has served more to hinder Barrack Obama, than to help him. It is obvious to me that Barrack Obama is such a talented and articulate speaker that he has been able to get where he is DESPITE the disadvantages of his color! But who cares about that. The important thing to understand here is that publicly stating that a politician could not have achieved their current level of success without their race or gender, is simply a horribly racist and offensive thing to say, no matter how you slice it!!!!! I’ve spent a lot of time analyzing this issue, and I don’t think there is any other way you can slice it. But, at Least Ferraro is consistent: She also made a horribly sexist and offensive statement against herself by stating publicly that she doesn’t think she would have been selected to be a vice presidential running mate if it were not for her gender. So, aside from Ferraro’s horribly racist, sexist, and offensive remarks, at least she is applies her ignorance consistently across the board.

  12. So, it’s “extremely racist and offensive” to speak the truth in public. So, let me get this straight… if we say Ferraro was partly selected to run for vice president in 1984 because she’s a woman (and by her own account, that’s precisely what happened), we’re being horribly sexist?

    Tell me, what other facts are we supposed to omit from the official account of Obama’s glorious rise to power. I want to know so that when the Politburo meets, I can give the “correct” version of events for CCTV state television (unfettered by annoying things like reality).

    Long Live the Revolution!

  13. Jamie,
    You stated: “What’s truly astounding about all of this is that we cannot even discuss whether race is a factor in the nomination process without being branded as racists. Following that line of reasoning to its logical conclusion, one should not be able to discuss whether religion is a factor, either, without being branded apostates; should not be able to discuss whether candidates personal financing is a factor, without being branded classists; should not be able to discuss anything without being branded something else. ”

    This is a very good point! But I do not agree with you and I’ll tell you why. You have to determine what is the benefit of pointing out certain correlations. There are a lot of things that we might want to do or say, but we have to look at the practical value of doing or saying those things. In the case of coincidental correlations, I don’t think it is valuable to talk about ANY of these trivial correlations (religion, race, gender, personal financing, etc.) when publicly speaking about the success that a candidate has achieved. In the universal scheme of things, besides giving people useless trivia to store in their brains for trivia night at the local bar, this information can only serve to cause people to become biased in favor of or against a candidate. This is not the reason why any of us should decide which candidate we want to support! However, I should point out that behind close doors, it is extremely advantageous for candidates to take advantage of polls to determine what different groups of voters are responding to, and then get advice from consultants on how to take advantage of those statistical trends. But these are not the kinds of things that voters, and candidates should be talking about in the mainstream, because. It simply does not serve any practical function!

    So to say,

    “What’s truly astounding about all of this is that we cannot even discuss whether race is a factor in the nomination process without being branded as racists”

    is similar to saying,

    “What’s truly astounding about all of this is that we cannot even discuss something that does not serve any practical function, without being branded as racists.”

    Who cares if you are branded a racist for talking about something that isn’t even practical to talk about anyway! Think about it!

    Also, you are right that religion and personal financing are also trivial correlations which have nothing to do with the substance of the candidate, and therefore also serve no practical value for people who are deciding who to vote for. 🙂

  14. John,
    You stated: “So, it’s “extremely racist and offensive” to speak the truth in public. So, let me get this straight… if we say Ferraro was partly selected to run for vice president in 1984 because she’s a woman (and by her own account, that’s precisely what happened), we’re being horribly sexist?
    Tell me, what other facts are we supposed to omit from the official account of Obama’s glorious rise to power. I want to know so that when the Politburo meets, I can give the “correct” version of events for CCTV state television (unfettered by annoying things like reality).
    Long Live the Revolution!”

    I already answered your first question at the end of my 4:57pm post. Yes, you would be horribly sexist to say this about Ferraro, just as she was horribly sexist when she said this about herself. It just doesn’t serve any practical function to spend time talking about such trivial correlations because it can only lead to people forming biases for the wrong reasons!

    To answer your second question, I am fundamentally a libertarian, so I do not in any way shape or form believe that the government should censor what people are saying. I don’t even think the FCC should censor the mainstream media. But if you want to get mad because people, of their own free will, are deciding that you are saying racist things, then I think you have to decide if it served any practical value to even say those things in the first place! If the answer is no, then don’t say those things next time, and you won’t be branded a racist!

    This has nothing to do with government censorship, so I don’t know how in the world you drew that correlation.

  15. The government doesn’t have to censor anything when individuals are forced to adopt self-censorship (and accept lies as the truth). If you wish to adopt a position that anyone who speaks about race and gender is bigoted, that’s certainly your right.

    We also have the right to point out that your position is erroneous and disingenuous. It’s intended to stifle discussion on matters which do play a role in this election. Who are you to decide what’s practical for the rest of America? That’s…arrogant presumption. And I will certainly not be silenced by baseless charges of bias, and I doubt anyone else will be either.

  16. Let me address OV’s last point first: religion and personal finance are relevant, as they indicate a candidate’s moral compass and ability handle finances. Let’s face it, someone who can’t manage their own finances well can hardly be expected to fix the current miasma of budget demands.

    Any ONE such criteria, however, should not serve as a litmus test for a candidate. But surely Americans should consider these factors to at least a small extent.

    Now, to return to OV’s first point, dear commenter, you start from a false assumption. Ferraro never said Obama wouldn’t be where he is were he not black. Parse her comment critically. She indicated that race is a factor in people’s minds, just as sex is, and that it was a fortunate happenstance for Obama that he is WHO, not what, he is at this point in time to get where he is. Not merely that he would not be where he is were he not black, but that it’s a factor that contributed to his current position. Try to get the nuance of a quote before making tangential point that aren’t even based on a fact.

    Besides, which: OF COURSE Obama wouldn’t be who he is were he not black. Do you think he hasn’t faced racism? Now that would be a truly arrogant assumption. Ask any African American is being black has affected their life and how they developed into who they are today. I would think it’s a fairly obvious answer. And so what was wrong with Ferraro pointing out that Hillary doesn’t have that added factor in her favor?

    And yes, for Obama in this race, being black is a big PLUS when it comes to getting the nomination. Probably not so much in the general election, due to the nature of certain traditional southern religious voting blocs.

  17. Everybody keeps getting caught up in trying to prove that there is nothing wrong with what Ferraro said. But that is side stepping my point. I would like for anybody to tell me what is practical or useful or helpful about what Ferraro said? Put all logic aside and just use common sense to realize that if you make any type of comment about race, a lot of people are automatically going to get offended whether they have a “logical” reason to get offended or not. So if you are a high profile person with common sense, as I believe Ferraro is, then you would have to have a practical or useful or helpful reason to say something racial while you are being recorded by the mainstream media. I’ll tell you what her practical reason is. It was her intention to use the issue of race to try to turn people against Obama. She was willing to become a “martyr” in order to accomplish that goal. You can’t tell me Ferraro doesn’t have common sense, because she has built a powerful mainstream reputation over a long number of years. She is not stupid enough to say such a controversial racial comment without having a practical or useful or helpful reason for doing so. In this case, I believe she intended her comments to be practical, useful, and helpful to Hillary Clinton’s Campaign. If not, then tell me what is the practical intent? Do not insult Ferraro’s intelligence by arguing that she didn’t have any practical intent but was simply innocently and arbitrarily exercising her freedom to talk about race, just for the hell of it. Ferraro is not that stupid!

  18. There has to be somebody here who is capable of understanding my perspective. It is a simple perspective. Common sense dictates that whether or not it “should” be the case, lots of people are going to get offended anytime a high profile person says anything about race. So, if you are a high profile person with common sense, you will only say something racial in the mainstream media when you intend for those comments to accomplish a practical objective. Is anybody capable of understanding this simple perspective? 🙂

  19. Pingback: This is a very interesting blog post and comment discussion on a neighboring WordPress Blog! « Opposing Viewpoints

  20. Okay, I guess you guys can tell I’m new to blogging. I created a post in my blog with a link to this blog post, and it automatically placed a comment in this blog post? What is the best way for me to utilize this feature?

  21. Everybody keeps getting caught up in trying to prove that there is nothing wrong with what Ferraro said.

    What “everyone” keeps getting caught up in is their own spin on what they really wish Ferraro had said while blithely ignoring what she actually did say. By everyone, I largely mean the many Obama supporters who have, in order to turn Ferraro into a pariah and Hillary into a KKK Grand Wizard, employed a logic so tortured that the UN Human Rights Council now lists being exposed to it somewhere between “waterboarding” and “Wrangling Britney Spears” on its list of “Things that Alberto Gonzalez has no problems doing to everyone but himself.”

    Those same atom-thin attacks are now being stretched even further to justify Obama’s 20 year spiritual linkage to the Reverend Jeremiah Wright who is, contextually, every bit as anti-semitic and anti-American as Ferraro and Clinton are racist. That is, at best, hypocrisy.

    I would like for anybody to tell me what is practical or useful or helpful about what Ferraro said?

    Define “practical”, “useful” or “helpful”. Personally, I found what she said, or at least the fallout, to be quite helpful in deciding who I will and will not vote for and crystalizing exactly why. I also found her analysis of why Hillary supporters are suddenly abandoning Clinton in favor of Obama to be interesting and quite useful in addressing racial issues in this campaign and the ongoing threat of identity politics. Accurate? Who knows, but since when did it become verboten for a public figure to offer debatable analysis?

    Put all logic aside and just use common sense to realize that if you make any type of comment about race, a lot of people are automatically going to get offended whether they have a “logical” reason to get offended or not

    If you have to “put all logic aside” then it’s doubtful your conclusion is going to be either wide-spread or sensible. That’s how unscrupulous salesmen talked people who make $35,000 a year into buying $250,000 houses.

    To the point, the problem is not those who have already abandoned anything approaching rationality or critical thinking in their politics and have embraced partisan shock-punditry (John Aravosis, Markos Moulitsas, Ann Coulter, Michael Savage, etc.). They’re largely ignorable as anything other than entertainment. What’s deeply troubling is people who tend to approach life with a certain degree of interest in their actions. These are the people who are now bending over backwards to strawman Ferraro and suggest that not talking about race magically makes the issue go away. Many Obama supporters are not fools, but for some reason are choosing to act foolishly on this issue, embracing neither logic nor common sense in favor of ripping into their own party and setting up a fall guy for why the election was lost 8 months before the actual election.

    That’s just batshit insane.

    It was her intention to use the issue of race to try to turn people against Obama.

    Golly, that’s certainly turned out well for her, then. Hillary is soaring in the polls, Obama has been cast out to wherever cast out people go and white America is looking around at itself as it comes out of its long delusion and asking one another over golf carts and water coolers, “Say, old chap, did you ever particularly notice how dark that Obama fellow’s tan is? I say, bit of a sticky racial wicket there. Lucky thing that Geraldine Ferraro chap was there to save me from voting for a black man as I’d never previously considered his race prior to her comments. Say, “Ferraro”…doesn’t that sound…Italian…?”

    You can’t have it both ways. You claim Ferraro should have known better because of her years of experience but then turn right around and accuse her of a bald-faced stratagem that a slightly retarded first-year Capitol Hill intern would spot as a losing horse.

    There has to be somebody here who is capable of understanding my perspective.

    I am perfectly capable of understanding your perspective. I just don’t consider it to be cogent or even well thought out.

    Common sense dictates

    You keep using that term as if it has some sort of actual, tacit, unique meaning. I strongly suspect all it boils down to is, “Hey, guys, everybody think like me because I say so and because I really want this to be the way things work, okay!?! Great!” What is this “common sense” you keep genuflecting to like a latter day Nostradamus? If it’s so “common” there must be easily accessible and universally known rules governing it. Produce them. If it’s so “sensible” then these rules must present some sort of quantifiable value criteria. Illustrate it.

    Frankly, can you offer any reason to believe it’s anything other than the last refuge of an intellectual coward? For the love of God, own your opinions and the thought behind them. Undoubtedly you’ll be wrong on occasion. We all are. But at least it’ll be you who’s wrong, not some piece of mental flotsam that so fears being wrong that they have to drag the rest of humanity down with them.

    For the record, I do occasionally choose to set aside my logic and rationality in service to my own value structure, most notably when I indulge in my religious faith. That choice is made not in rejection of logic and reason, as you seem to advocate for, but in exaltation of it and apart from it. Your incessant, wearying appeal to this “common sense” nonsense is merely stupefying intellectual laziness.

  22. QuakerJono, you did an amazing job of taking my words out of context!

    If you are not capable of putting my words into the correct context, then why should I trust that you are capable of putting Ferraro’s words into the correct context either?

  23. QuakerJono, you did an amazing job of taking my words out of context!

    If you are not capable of putting my words into the correct context, then why should I trust that you are capable of putting Ferraro’s words into the correct context either?

  24. I shouldn’t have to explain this to you, QuakerJono, but the whole point of using the term common sense is to illustrate the fact that most people don’t react to racial comments in a way that is logical. So if you want to understand why people are reacting emotionally to certain racial comments, you are not able to figure this out using logic. ::duh::

  25. Also, QuakerJono, I definitely don’t want or expect everyone to think like me. That would be extremely boring! I want to live in a world full of Opposing Viewpoints! I have found that you truly do not fully understand your own viewpoint unless you are capable of understanding all of the opposing viewpoints. I started out in life as a brainwashed conservative, but I have become much more liberal over the years as a result of analyzing as many opposing viewpoints as possible. As it turns out, the democrats and the republicans both have some good points! There isn’t a conspiracy on either side! Unless you want to call earmarks a conspiracy. McCain claims he wants to end earmarks, but I don’t believe him.

  26. QuakerJono, you made at least one good point and I’m still thinking about it. As it turns out, I don’t think people should hold Obama responsible for what his pastor has said! And I don’t think Obama should have to leave his church just because his pastor said a few stupid things over a 30 year period. So according to your argument, I should be able to apply the same logic towards the Ferraro situation? I see what you are saying. You are saying that Obama’s Pastor is just as much a racist as Ferraro or Hillary. I would agree with you there. I don’t think any of them are really racist. Well, on second thought, Obama’s pastor probably is a little bit racist given his background of oppression during segregation in the 60s. But can you really blame him? I definitely don’t think Ferraro is a racist. I just think she is an opportunist. Either that or she is getting senile. If she didn’t know everybody was going to get offended by her statement, then she has forgotten everything that she has learned during an entire career of politics. All bullshit aside, Ferraro and Hillary Clinton are not racist, but lets be honest, they will do or say anything, even if it sounds racist, to gain more power.

  27. Everybody keeps getting caught up in trying to prove that there is nothing wrong with what Ferraro said. But that is side stepping my point.

    Funny thing, that. I thought it was my main point, and my blog. Ferraro said Obama was lucky to be WHO he is, not WHAT he is. I guess the 40+ years of civil rights advocacy isn’t worth a damn, right? Is that the legacy we want to leave to our future candidates? Why should anyone advocate for any changes in any policy if they don’t amount to squat if you say one thing some high-minded KOOKS on the fringe left don’t like and all your street cred goes pfft!

    Your “point” that anytime anyone says anything that even involves race, people are going to be offended only serves to further prove the point I made in another post: we are incapable of having a mature discussion about race in this country.

    Do you think that Obama won’t say anything just to gain power? How do you think he’s come so far so quickly if not knowing who to properly schmooze?

    Naive. Extremely naive.

  28. Jamie,

    The thing I find interesting about this topic is that I sincerely wonder if I would be able to understand your viewpoint if I was a Hillary supporter and not a Barrack supporter.

    From my perspective, your viewpoint seems extremely naive. But apparently my viewpoint seems extremely naive from your viewpoint. And I’m sure both of us are plenty intelligent to understand either viewpoint.

    So I am wondering if the problem is that the issue is so trivial to begin with, that it is easy to take either side of the argument depending on which candidate we think is the better person?

    If I thought Hillary was a sincere candidate and Obama was an opportunist, then I could imagine myself believing that ”If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position, and if he was a woman of any color he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept.”

    Apparently it becomes impossible for people to view Ferraro’s statement as negative and inappropriate, unless they believe that what she said is not factual.

    So, I think one thing we should all agree on, is that most people who thinks Ferraro’s statement is non-factual are offended by her statement and feel it was extremely inappropriate.

    So, shouldn’t that be a clue to the people who think her statement was factual, that maybe it was an inappropriate thing to say regardless of whether it was factual or not? I mean, unless you think it is appropriate for Ferraro to go around making lots of people upset by saying things she believes to be factual.

    And that brings me to another important point: It Is Impossible To Determine If Ferraro’s Statement is a Fact. Only God knows if her statement is a fact. It is impossible to prove. And not only that, but there are a lot of really smart people who believe it is NOT a fact.

    So, just because a lot of smart people think it is probably a fact doesn’t mean that we get to treat it as a fact for the sake of discussion. “2+2=4” is a fact. It can be easily proven. Ferraro’s statement can not be proven, and is also disputed by many intelligent people, and therefore should not be considered a fact by intelligent people in an intelligent discussion. Furthermore, a statement which is impossible to prove factual, is considered to be an opinion when that statement is used in an intelligent conversation.

    So, now that we have established that Ferraro’s statement is an opinion, Jamie, I think your entire argument falls apart. You are arguing that people should never get upset whenever a fact is stated, even if it is a fact which people don’t like to hear. Okay, fine, but that reasoning does not apply to this topic, because Ferraro’s statement is considered to be an opinion for the sake of any intelligent discussion on the matter. What do you have to say about that, QuakerJono, and John? You don’t have to agree with me, but you have to admit that my perspective is definitely valid. You guys have got to be friends with at least a few intelligent Obama supporters. Go and ask them if my perspective is a valid perspective.

    I think your perspective is valid, Jamie, but your perspective seems to be one which is only held by people who have the OPINION that Obama does not have more talent than all of the other candidates who were running for president with him.

    I believe that Yes, Obama is “lucky to be who he is”, but that has nothing to do with his race or his gender, so to suggest it does, is inappropriate and offensive unless you can prove that it is a fact. If you can not prove that it is a fact, then it is inappropriate and offensive. Common people, how can you say that this is not a valid viewpoint? You don’t have to agree with me, but you have to admit it is a valid viewpoint.

    Also, I just want to point out that I think this is a really great discussion! I can tell that you guys are mad at me for not agreeing with you and maybe you think that the way I write my posts is arogant and offensive. But I don’t believe it is good to sugar coat my viewpoint in a debate if I want other people to have the best chance of understanding my viewpoint. So that is why I lay it on thick so you can see exactly where I am coming from. But I don’t mind if people don’t agree with me, so I think this is a great discussion! That is why I posted a link to this discussion in my blog. I am assuming that you would want people to link to this blog from their blog. If you are so upset with my viewpoints that you don’t want me to link to this blog from my blog then please let me know. I’ll be happy to take the link down if you don’t want to associate with people with opposing viewpoints.

  29. you did an amazing job of taking my words out of context

    Ah yes, the “out of context” ploy. I don’t buy it from Ferraro and I don’t buy it from you.

    However, I will admit I was cranky and distracted when I responded so it is quite possible that I did misconstrue your…I hesitate to say reasoning, but whatever. So go ahead, where exactly did I take you so out of context as to change the fundamental point of what you’re saying and how you’re saying it?

    If you are not capable of putting my words into the correct context, then why should I trust that you are capable of putting Ferraro’s words into the correct context either?

    You’re not. Feel free to doubt my understanding of Ferraro’s comments, poking holes in my logic or offering evidence as to why your interpretation is better. So far, though, all you’ve offered is some sort of hare-brained appeal to “common sense” and all that’ll get you, along with $5, will get you a cup of coffee at Starbucks.

    I will offer this, however. So far, you’ve accused Ferraro of making all sorts of racially inflammatory statements. Yet, you haven’t actually listed and dissected a single one of those statements, instead simply saying, according to “common sense”, whenever a politician talks about race in any capacity it’s wrong because someone is going to get their feelings hurt.

    that most people don’t react to racial comments in a way that is logical

    They certainly don’t if that’s all you expect of them and let them get away with it because “common sense dictates” hardline pragmatism. What an amazingly low bar you set.

    You know, I was actually feeling sort of bad that I took a snide tone with you, but thanks for helping me get over that.

    I definitely don’t want or expect everyone to think like me

    Oh of course you do. Practically every single sentence you’ve written in this thread practically drips with a shuddery desire to to be validated.by others. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with that, although I personally find it a little pathetic, but at least man up to it. “There has to be somebody here who is capable of understanding my perspective. It is a simple perspective.” “I shouldn’t have to explain this to you…” “This has nothing to do with government censorship, so I don’t know how in the world you drew that correlation.”

    No, you don’t want everyone to think like you, you just want to imply that they must be stupid or off-base if they don’t. Ever so much better…

    As it turns out, I don’t think people should hold Obama responsible for what his pastor has said!

    Unsurprising, to say the least.

    And I don’t think Obama should have to leave his church just because his pastor said a few stupid things over a 30 year period.

    Ah, so a 30 year period is okay, but Ferraro made remarks over about a 3 week period, give or take, and that’s actionable. Antisemitism and antiamericanism is fine so long as it’s spread out. Gotcha.

  30. Let’s get one thing strait. I don’t think Ferraro should have to leave the Hillary campaign just because she said one stupid thing. That is a separate issue altogether, but since you are ASSUMING that is my position, let me be clear that it is not! My only point in saying everything I have said is to try to explain that what she said was stupid. But hell, we all say stupid things sometimes. But I find it disapointing that Ferraro refuses to apologize for her remarks. But even without apologizing, she still shouldn’t have to leave the Hillary Campaign. That’s just rediculous! Similarly, that lady In Obama’s campaign who called Hilary a monster shouldn’t have to leave his campaign. And similarly, Obama should not be judged for what his pastor has done or said. I hope this does a better job of putting my views into perspective for you.

  31. I said: And I don’t think Obama should have to leave his church just because his pastor said a few stupid things over a 30 year period.

    QJ said: “Ah, so a 30 year period is okay, but Ferraro made remarks over about a 3 week period, give or take, and that’s actionable. Antisemitism and antiamericanism is fine so long as it’s spread out. Gotcha.”
    ———————————————————————–
    No, Ferraro’s comments are not actionable, in my view, not if actionable means we are supposed to do something about it or that Hillary is supposed to do somethign about it. Ferraro’s comments were stupid, but not actionable.

    And No, Antisemitism and antiamericanism are not fine as long as it is spread out. But I never claimed that they were. I didn’t make a claim that what Rev. Wright said was okay. His comments are about 50 million times more stupid than what Ferraro said. But Obama didn’t say those things. So I don’t think anybody should punish Obama for the sins of his pastor.

    And who gives a damn if I want everyone to like me or if I want everyone to agree with me. Why are we argueing about that? I don’t give a shit one way or the other. I think it goes without saying that anybody would like for people to agree with them. ::duh:: but I don’t expect everybody to agree with me, because if that started happening now, it would go against 33 years of previous experience! I’m used to being the person with the Opposing Viewpoint! Thus the blog name “Opposing Viewpoints” duh!!!!!

    Is this the best you’ve got QJ? It doesn’t even seem like you are trying. Instead, I get the feeling that you just like listening to yourself speak about something that sounds good but it doesn’t even apply logically to anything I’ve said.

  32. QJ said: “I will offer this, however. So far, you’ve accused Ferraro of making all sorts of racially inflammatory statements. Yet, you haven’t actually listed and dissected a single one of those statements, instead simply saying, according to “common sense”, whenever a politician talks about race in any capacity it’s wrong because someone is going to get their feelings hurt.”
    ——————————————————
    Um, QJ, how about look above your last post and read EVERYTHING I wrote, before you start trying to tell me what I haven’t done. LOL 🙂

    No wonder you don’t understand my perspective, if you are not reading everything I wrote! You are simply taking snippets out of my comments and saying anything that pops into your mind to try to discredit my statements. What is up with that? LOL

  33. My only point in saying everything I have said is to try to explain that what she said was stupid.

    Round and round we go. So far, you haven’t addressed what she actually said. You’ve come up with some jazz about political operatives shouldn’t be talking about race because some mysterious “common sense” principle makes everyone go all wiggy. That is NOT addressing what she said.

    I hope this does a better job of putting my views into perspective for you.

    Again, I think I have quite the appropriate perspective on your views so you needn’t bother.

    And No, Antisemitism and antiamericanism are not fine as long as it is spread out. But I never claimed that they were.

    Really?

    “Well, on second thought, Obama’s pastor probably is a little bit racist given his background of oppression during segregation in the 60s. But can you really blame him?”

    Yes, actually, I can blame him because I assume he’s a grown man responsible for his own viewpoints, actions and who/what he chooses to endorse and hang around. Why can’t you?

    So I don’t think anybody should punish Obama for the sins of his pastor.

    We’re not. We’re calling into question the 20 years of voluntary spiritual mentorship that exists between them and how, in that 20 years, the first time Obama heard any of Wrights vitriol was last week.

    I get the feeling that you just like listening to yourself speak about something that sounds good but it doesn’t even apply logically to anything I’ve said.

    Says the one who wants to throw logic out the window in favor of “common sense”. Believe what you like, I’ve got your measure and I think everyone else does as well.

    Um, QJ, how about look above your last post and read EVERYTHING I wrote, before you start trying to tell me what I haven’t done. LOL

    Um, I started writing the post at 4 o’clock, had to go pick up my car, got back and finished writing and in between you had thrown up another comment. So, what, after 13 posts you finally get around to actually quoting Ferraro. Yeah, my point has been obliterated…

    No wonder you don’t understand my perspective

    I completely understand your perspective. As I’ve said before, I don’t agree with it nor do I consider it to be cogent. Evidently to you, understanding means “agreeing with”.

    You are simply taking snippets out of my comments and saying anything that pops into your mind to try to discredit my statements.

    I have no desire to go sentence by sentence through each of your posts and explain where you fail logically. I’ve hit the points that I find to be the most salient. Everything else is ignorable.

  34. **First off, I want to say that I’m more than happy to have anyone link here and contribute to an open and honest discussion. And please note that simply because I object to weak arguments does not construe anger on my point. Frustration, perhaps, but not anger. 🙂

    Now, to the task at hand, you said:

    The thing I find interesting about this topic is that I sincerely wonder if I would be able to understand your viewpoint if I was a Hillary supporter and not a Barrack supporter.

    Please note that I have not stated my support for any candidate this cycle. Biden was my man, and now I’m undecided. I have my problems with Hillary as well, but I have great admiration for her in a good many respects also. And I can’t discount voting for McCain, especially with the conservatives in Iran winning another *cough* election.

    But I am not a staunch supporter of any candidate, so have no dog in this race. To suppose my views are based on support for Hillary is erroneous, so I wanted to clear that up right out of the gate.

    So, I think one thing we should all agree on, is that most people who thinks Ferraro’s statement is non-factual are offended by her statement and feel it was extremely inappropriate.

    No, we shouldn’t agree, because I don’t.

    I happen to think that Ferraro’s statement is only offensive to people who consider race as something we need to find offensive in the first place. Ferraro made a salient point that people with the capacity for logic quickly understood. But since you keep asking, ”

    I would like for anybody to tell me what is practical or useful or helpful about what Ferraro said?

    let me do exactly that:

    An adult, astute parsing of Ferraro’s comment would be that Obama personifies a confluence of dissatisfied elements in the voting bloc, (i.e. people of color, children of immigrants, antiwar folks, young idealists) at this point in time. Given the current political atmosphere, he is lucky to have all of those disparate factors counting for him, not against him.

    A juvenile parsing of Ferraro’s comment would be, “He’s lucky to be a black man.”

    Now, which meaning would you ascribe to someone who’s spent the majority of her life and career advocating for minorities, running for political office, developing social programs, etc.?

    I mean, really. When you say that “Obama being lucky to be who he is has nothing to do with race or gender” you can’t really believe that, can you? Race and gender are parts of who he is, so they must have something to do with it. As does religion. As does his incredible understanding of physics (according to his Harvard law professor) which I find a highly impressive quality in the man, far more than any oratory “talent.”

    Frankly, I find the hoopla over Ferraro’s comments to be a pandering of the Obama supporters to the most base, vile instincts in people, and highly divisive to the party.

    But we’re only supposed to say that about Hillary’s campaign. 🙄

    People really need to think truly critically, not just repeat talking points and call it thinking critically.

  35. As to your comparison to affirmative action, NDT, I don’t wish to go there. I think there is a time and place for affirmative action as a necessary evil to equalize society at large–though by the very fact of Obama’s popularity, that time may be passing as we speak–but the office of POTUS isn’t the same thing. It’s voted for, for one thing, not strictly interviewed then hired.

    I daresay you probably should, Jamie, because the abuse of affirmative action is exactly why the Democrat Party has Barack Obama as a candidate.

    The danger is not in the process of affirmative action, but in the mindset itself, in which it subtly and continuously reinforces that minority group members should not be held to the same standards or requirements as others — and ultimately creates the perception that to demand the level playing field that Dr. King himself spoke of is “racist”.

    As I said before, were Obama white, he would have suffered exactly the same fate as his white counterpart John Edwards, another man who is long on rhetoric, heavy in behavior that contradicts it, and generally unqualified to do anything beyond give pretty speeches.

    But because of Obama’s skin color, he will never be judged by the same standards as applied to Edwards — because, in the minds of so many people, to do so would be a cardinal sin against black people.

  36. The danger is not in the process of affirmative action, but in the mindset itself, in which it subtly and continuously reinforces that minority group members should not be held to the same standards or requirements as others — and ultimately creates the perception that to demand the level playing field that Dr. King himself spoke of is “racist”.

    I don’t think that’s correct. The entitlement mindset is propagated not by affirmative action policies but by welfare policies, and is apparent in poor segments of society regardless of color. It’s a mindset fostered by years of welfare programs administered as solutions rather than as temporary aides.

    No, affirmative action has its time and place, and has led to its stated purpose of establishing higher numbers of minorities in the workplace. This is a good thing. But like any social program, it should be constantly, diligently examined for abuse and fraud. And those who participate in it should be educated in the purpose of the program so the benefits are not misconstrued as entitlement.

    Do you think Obama got where he is today because he didn’t work hard? Let me tell you directly that two of the hardest working people I know are black, and one is a woman. And because of how they think they are perceived, they work harder than anyone else. Even if that perception by others isn’t there in my place of employment, a history of exposure to those bad attitudes has infected them with a work ethic, and a need to prove themselves.

    I hope that as our employers and their outdated belief systems are phased out, much like those espoused by Reverent Wright, affirmative action will and should fade to the side as equality becomes firmly entrenched in younger generations of managers, supervisors, owners, etc. Affirmative action worked on changing the mindset of newer generations. Many simply refused to hire or promote people of color, or women, until relatively recently. Species-wise, it’s only been a blink. So if some white guys didn’t get the best jobs because some black guys got a hand up, sure, it’s not fair, but nobody ever said life was fair. That may seem callous but it’s true. You can’t make an omlet . . . Hopefully, though, we are seeing in our own time a sort of equalization, where people are open-minded enough to stop thinking about such things.

    Unless you’re gay, then Pfft! There goes that theory.

    Now, if we re-established that good old New England work ethic across the board and truly had an informed, educated and ambitious electorate, we would need NO social programs. But we’re not there yet, are we?

    We could start with Term Limits.

  37. Do you think Obama got where he is today because he didn’t work hard?

    My response, Jamie: “At what?”

    As far as we can tell, he’s done a masterful job at positioning himself for and scrabbling up the political ladder.

    But when it comes to actually doing what he’s supposed to do and what he promised the people who voted for him that he would (and would not) do…..not so much, as his phenomenal number of “Present” votes and his crassly breaking his stated promise that he was not using the Senate as a springboard for future political activity shows.

    Simply put, Obama doesn’t think he has to do his job or keep his promises because he’s black. Contrast that with your coworkers (or people like Condi Rice) who have exactly the opposite attitude, and you’ll see the problem. Your coworkers have kept their jobs because their performance warrants it. Obama has kept his job because of his skin color.

  38. Simply put, Obama doesn’t think he has to do his job or keep his promises because he’s black.

    Wow, now there’s some pure conjecture of a racist tinge.

    Look, I’m not out to defend him or anyone in particular, but blatent statements like that make you sound really ignorant.

    I’ve already mentioned several times the very items you mention–his present votes, his promise to not use the Senate as a springboard–but that has nothing to do with any evidence that he hasn’t worked hard.

    You don’t learn to give speeches like he does by not doing your homework, schoolwork, etc. Education doesn’t just happen–you have to work at it. Teachers can throw all the knowledge and skill building at you that they want, but if you’re not willing to take up the gauntlet and work at learning, it’s not going to happen. So that’s evidence right there that he’s worked hard.

    And I’d appreciate it if you didn’t throw out racist bombs like that.

  39. Race issue aside, I think NDT may have a point.

    I’ve been trying to digest his speech and, I have to admit, it’s a pretty impressive piece of rhetoric. Of course, I’ve never denied that the man has charisma or lacked the ability to knock it out of the park oratorically. What I’ve always questioned is exactly how is he going to back up his words.

    So I think, while it was an impressive piece of speechcraft, it was little more than that and pretty words, no matter how passionately delivered, are not plans or actions.

    Reviews of the speech have spanned the gamut. Some on the far left calling it the most important speech on race in the U.S. since Martin Luther King, Jr. (or possibly even better than him) and predicting that school children will be studying it years from now in that context. Some on the far Right have labeled it nothing more than a plan to outlaw being white should Obama be elected. Many watching our nation from the outside, and some of those living in it, have found it interesting, but somewhat irksome since it seems to depend so heavily on “Only in America could this happen” American exceptionalism.

    I don’t put much truck in any of the extreme positions, although the point about American exceptionalism is pretty apt, particularly in light of his 2004 address at the DNC. It’s not because I have any particular hate for or love of Obama that I mistrust these extremes, but rather because the speech itself simply sounds hollow. It’s not capable of producing either extreme.

    I don’t want to critique too exactly because I’m working on a blog piece of my own about why I feel this way, but NDT sums it up, at least in part. I would, however, not say it’s “Because he’s black.” I don’t think it’s racial. I think it’s because he knows he can get away with it. Because he knows he’s charismatic. Because he knows that he can push the right buttons, sing the right tunes to get people to forgive and/or follow him. Because he’s very good at apologizing, he doesn’t seem to feel he should avoid the mistake in the first place.

    For five years now, one of my chief criticisms of BushCo has been their inability to own their mistakes and apologize for them. Governance is not an exact science and politicians will make mistakes. If they apologize for those mistakes and move forward, ever vigilant not to repeat them, the electorate can forgive much. If they are arrogant and refuse to even admit their mistakes, much less apologize for them, then the electorate would be well advised to remove them from power as soon as possible because they are no longer “public servants” but tyrants.

    The flips side, however, is that eventually apologies become empty. Even if one abjectly apologizes and has a good track record of not repeating mistakes, too many mistakes can ruin trust and confidence to a point where no amount of sorry will work. We’ve seen Obama build a conceptual campaign based on “hope” and “change”. We’ve also seen him run a campaign that consistently stumbles and falls on its face whenever scrutiny is paid to it. Given the hodgepodge of horrors who ever is elected in November will inherit, I have to ask myself, “Even though he can spin and apologize like no one’s business, was Wright and Obama’s flipflop on him one mistake too many?”

  40. Jamie, I think you demonstrated my point most aptly.

    Suppose I hire a person to do accounting, but they instead spend all of their time running their own online business. While they may be “working hard” on that, they are not doing the job for which they were hired.

    As we’ve seen, Obama has done the same thing. Instead of representing his constituents, he was running around giving speeches to lay the groundwork for his political ascendance (even after explicitly promising his constituents he would do no such thing). He couldn’t even be bothered to cast an informed vote when he was there to do so (as his numerous “present” votes indicate).

    As the old performance management adage goes, never confuse effort with effectiveness.

    Furthermore, compared to the white Democrat males who were running, Obama is easily the least-qualified of the bunch, has the worst legislative record of achievement and interest, and arguably is not even the best speaker (as compared to Edwards, for example).

    I call ’em as I see ’em. If Obama were my employee, regardless of how hard he worked on things other than his job, he would be out on his ear for not doing his job, while your coworkers would keep their jobs (and be rewarded) because they work hard at the tasks they are supposed to be doing.

    You seemingly expect me to cut Obama slack for being unqualified and having a demonstrated history of not doing his job because he “works hard” — which smacks of rationalization for not judging people based on their qualifications and how well they do their job, but on other factors.

    Like skin color.

  41. You seemingly expect me to cut Obama slack for being unqualified and having a demonstrated history of not doing his job because he “works hard” — which smacks of rationalization for not judging people based on their qualifications and how well they do their job, but on other factors.

    Like skin color.

    No, I don’t. At all. I’m saying that his lack of effectiveness is not proof that he hasn’t worked hard. It’s just proof that he’s not very good at achieving results for his constituents. He may well have worked very hard and still failed.

    We “work” toward “success.” You’re the one confusing effort with effectiveness. Work=effort. Success=effectiveness. One can work extremely hard and still come up with negative results. That’s a measure of success achieved, not throughput.

    I really don’t know why you’re railing here. Saying that I expect you to cut Obama slack is laughable. Have you not seen the myriad posts I’ve put up criticizing the man for the very things you’ve mentioned? You’re just repeating points I’ve made again and again about his career positions, voting (or lack thereof), inability to push the “right button,” etc. But they have to do with apparent dishonesty, or at least incompetence. And not, necessarily, hard work. It’s a lot of work to fool so many people. It takes planning and foresight and education. But it’s got nothing to do with race.

    That’s just blind hate for the concept of affirmative action coming through on your part, and to say that I think “race” excuses incompetence or substitutes for actual qualifications is to ignore months of contextual posts here, and is completely untrue.

    But when you say “Simply put, Obama doesn’t think he has to do his job or keep his promises because he’s black,” that’s nothing but racist conjecture. Even if it’s true, it’s still racist conjecture on your part because you have no proof of that.

    And it completely sidetracks the discussion about whether or not he’s qualified for the job. I’ve discussed Obama’s qualifications, and lack thereof, over and over again without blaming his faults on his race, because his race isn’t the issue. Race may be why he’s getting a large amount of votes, but blaming race is not going to get people to abandon his campaign. Credibly pointing out lapses in judgement and calling his qualifications is what will produce results.

    But your comments indicate that his sole accomplishment is being black, and that’s responsible for all his successes. And that’s just narrowminded tunnelvision on your part. Yes, he may be a black man, but he’s not “just” a black man. You’re completely ignoring facts, such as Obama’s broad understanding of physics (which doesn’t come without hard work, let me tell you), in order to paint him as some stereotypical lazy black man benefitting from affirmative action.

    Well, I won’t have it. I’ve been far more openly critical than most blogs around here, including yours, of Obama’s credentials, and I’ve done it without resorting to such lazy stereotyping. I certainly don’t think he’s the most qualified to the position of POTUS. But it’s got nothing to do with skin color.

  42. Credibly pointing out lapses in judgement and calling his qualifications is what will produce results.

    Not really.

    The reason why is explained quite nicely in your next paragraph.

    You’re completely ignoring facts, such as Obama’s broad understanding of physics (which doesn’t come without hard work, let me tell you)

    Which means what, pray tell?

    Does Obama’s knowledge of physics make up for his complete inferiority in terms of political, diplomatic, and other relevant experiences to someone like Biden?

    The irony of the situation, Jamie, is that I have seen managers do the exact same thing — bringing up a white or male candidate’s attributes that are irrelevant to the job — for the purpose of discriminating against a qualified minority applicant.

    Yet when it comes to Obama, suddenly it’s “racist” to make the clear observation that people are doing the same thing — excusing a candidate’s lack of qualification for the job and bringing up their irrelevant attributes — because the candidate is of a preferential skin color.

    The problem here is that liberalism has conditioned many people to believe that an action cannot be racist as long as it benefits a black person. But Title VII and the Civil Rights Act make it clear that discrimination on the basis of skin color, regardless of what color, is still discrimination and is still illegal.

  43. NO, NDT. What his knowledge of physics does is demonstrate that he has indeed worked hard when necessary. You asked, “at what?” and I showed you.

    The irony of the situation, Jamie, is that I have seen managers do the exact same thing — bringing up a white or male candidate’s attributes that are irrelevant to the job — for the purpose of discriminating against a qualified minority applicant.

    That’s not what I was doing at all and for you to even imply such is just retarded. I demonstrated his capacity to work hard in contrast to your statement, “at what?”, above, with which you had implied that he has never worked hard. School, as I’ve already pointed out, is a necessary stepping stone to success. So we have proof that he has indeed worked hard. This was a separate point from his qualifications for office. When you move from what I actually wrote to your agenda-driven statement:

    Does Obama’s knowledge of physics make up for his complete inferiority in terms of political, diplomatic, and other relevant experiences to someone like Biden?

    You are conflating the two separate points, as you so often like to do. I was speaking to the fact that you implied he has not worked hard, not his qualifications.

    Again, you are saying that I’m somehow excusing his lack of qualifications. I am not, and have not done so, nor will I. But those qualifications, or lack thereof, as I have consistently pointed out, have nothing to do with skin color. If you think I believe “an action cannot be racist as long as it benefits a black person,” then I’m sorry, but you’re behaving like an idiot and there’s no nice way to say it.

  44. I have news for you. I have not yet read the comments that NDT has posted here, but Jamie and QJ along with another friend of mine: You have succeeded in convincing me that you are right about Ferraro’s statement being appropriate. I still do not agree with her statement. I think Obama’s color has been a hindrance to him, but his talent has allowed him to succeed despite his color. But I also (now) believe that it is perfectly appropriate for Ferraro to express her opinions, no matter how offensive, and I still believe that Hillary should not have fired her. Actually, I hate to say it, but it was primarily Obama’s speech on race that convinced me that Jamie and QJ are right about Ferraro’s comments being appropriate. How ironic is that? LOL 🙂 😀

    If you have not yet watched Obama’s entire speech on race, you are missing a treat! I think it is one of the greatest speeches in the history of this great nation. It really made me think about things with, what I feel is an even more advanced perspective. And I think most of the Pundits completely missed the greater significance of the true context of his speech.

  45. Jamie Said:

    “Now, if we re-established that good old New England work ethic across the board and truly had an informed, educated and ambitious electorate, we would need NO social programs. But we’re not there yet, are we? “

    @Jamie:

    Government Social Programs create people who need social programs. So if you think we are going to eventually create a society that doesn’t need social programs, by using government social programs, you simply do not have a realistic understanding of the effects of government social programs on a society. Ideally, the only welfare in a society should be from inheritance, and from private philanthropic organizations, and from concerned citizens, none of which are government programs. But nothing in the real world is ideal, so it probably isn’t a horrible thing for the government to lend limited assistance so that there are not too many people suffering in the short term. Which might have been what you were arguing to begin with. LOL So I might have just proved your point. LOL

  46. Jamie said:

    “Many watching our nation from the outside, and some of those living in it, have found it interesting, but somewhat irksome since it seems to depend so heavily on “Only in America could this happen” American exceptionalism. “

    I was actually bothered by that statement in Obama’s speech. I always think about what a person’s motivations are for saying what they say. (Because these motivations contribute to the true context.) In this case, I think Obama was saying this to try (maybe unsuccessfully) to prove that he (and his wife) truly has enough pride in his country that he (erroneously) believes that America is the only place where his story “would even be possible.”

  47. @Jamie

    You keep missing a simple point:

    I find Ferraro’s statement offensive because I do not agree with her statement.

    You do not find Ferraro’s statement offensive because you agree with her statement.

    Common now, Jamie, work with me here. This is simple logic!

    As it turns out, I share a trait with Obama. I’m also very good at physics, (and chemistry, and calculus, and computer programming, and electrical engineering.) I don’t know if Obama is good at all of those things, but we are apparently both good at physics, which requires the ability to use very basic, simple, logical, deductive reasoning.

    I want to believe that you share those traits with us, Jamie and QJ.. But I’m not yet convinced! 😀

  48. You are conflating the two separate points, as you so often like to do. I was speaking to the fact that you implied he has not worked hard, not his qualifications.

    And therein lies the problem.

    Instead of answering the question — if qualifications and experience matter, why has Obama, who has neither, gone so much farther than folks like Biden — you went off and implied, not read or actually saw, that that means Obama doesn’t work hard.

    In other words, you attacked me for asking the question by making up “what I said”.

    As I said before, when it comes to Obama, suddenly it’s “racist” to make the clear observation that people are doing the same thing that they used to do against black people — excusing a candidate’s lack of qualification for the job and bringing up their irrelevant attributes — because the candidate is of a preferential skin color.

    This election really is the delicious end result of the Democrats’ obsession with minority status over qualification — two candidates, neither of whom is qualified, who have demolished a field of more-qualified candidates based on their minority status, and who are now in a death match over whose minority status is more “worthy” with the primary tactic being to accuse the other of being “anti” the other’s minority status.

    As I have said before, if the Democrats ever want to get past race or gender, they have to stop obsessing on it. But that would take away, for example, Obama’s primary trump card, which is to explain away his “spiritual mentor” and his tirades against Jews and the US and to rationalize 9/11 by calling anyone who brings them up a “racist” who doesn’t understand “black philosophy”.

  49. Now you’re not making one whit of sense. Your intimation that he has not worked hard, by saying “at what?”, coupled with your tangent of his lack of accomplishments while in office, which I actually agree with, was quite clear to anyone but the most obtuse.

    Add to that the fact that I’ve made my point about ten times now in both this and other posts, and you’re just being deliberately obstinate. You know quite well what I’m talking about and want to try and step around it.

    Not. Gonna. Work.

  50. Jamie, I repeat what I posted previously.

    My response, Jamie: “At what?”

    As far as we can tell, he’s done a masterful job at positioning himself for and scrabbling up the political ladder.

    But when it comes to actually doing what he’s supposed to do and what he promised the people who voted for him that he would (and would not) do…..not so much, as his phenomenal number of “Present” votes and his crassly breaking his stated promise that he was not using the Senate as a springboard for future political activity shows.

    I make it clear that he has worked hard — at things that have nothing to do with his job and in fact are clear violations of his promises made to his constituents.

    Then I compare him to the other candidates that have been thrown out — Biden, Edwards, etc. — who match him in speechmaking capability and have far more experience and qualifications, as well as a record of actually doing their jobs and keeping more promises to their constituents.

    Obama fails in every category but one — he’s black, and they’re white.

    And I will continue to state that the reason Obama has done this time after time after time is simple — he doesn’t think he has to do his job or keep his promises because he is black, and he knows full well that he will never be held accountable because of it.

  51. I think you’re taking the racial argument to an extreme, NDT.

    If being black was the only reason for Obama’s success, the Democrats would’ve ended up with a Sharpton-Mosley Braun ticket in 2004. While race is a factor — the senator’s supporters use it to deflect criticism and silence opponents, it certainly isn’t the only reason.

    As I’ve said before, there’s only one Barack Obama. His presentation skills probably exceeds even President Clinton himself. And Clinton’s certainly no pushover when it comes to public speaking.

    Biden has a great resume, but he doesn’t really energize the crowd. Edwards had a chance to prove himself in 2004 (and blew it). Personally, experience matters more to me than Vegas style flashiness. But that certainly hasn’t been the case with other voters. Apparently, you can win with a poor track record (as long as you promise lots of entitlements beyond the authority of the office you’re running for).

    But don’t look at me. I didn’t vote for him. Talk to those idealistic college students camped outside Jamie’s VT house. 😉

  52. Mmmm, I sort of agree with you John, in the sense that Obama does have something more than a Sharpton and a Moseley-Braun.

    But that is less on the order of him having any gift or ideology beyond theirs and more on his being less PUBLICLY a moonbat.

  53. Talk to those idealistic college students camped outside Jamie’s VT house.

    Heh, they didn’t stay very long after they heard the shotgun pumped a couple of times.

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