Squaring the Culture

"...and I will make justice the plumb line, and righteousness the level;
then hail will sweep away the refuge of lies,
and the waters will overflow the secret place."
Isaiah 28:17

01/14/2008 (6:20 pm)

The Left Goes Racist… and Blames the Right

The leftward blogosphere is aflame over the apparent race-baiting comments being casually dropped by the Clinton campaign, and the return fire from the Obama Campaign. And it’s all our fault.

Huffington Post reprinted a memo allegedly obtained from the Obama campaign in SouthCarolina, citing 5 separate instances where Ms. Clinton, her husband, or someone considered a shill for her campaign used a phrase that could easily be taken as a racist reference (the blog post says “here’s the link,” but the actual memo is reproduced at the end of the post; it’s a little confusing). Michelle Malkin lays out the whole squabble with her usual thoroughness.

Now comes the fun part:

Jane Hamsher at FireDogLake is banging her head against the wall… “How stupid can they be?”

…it’s stupid and shortsighted. Just because the Republicans will go there in the general is not a reason to start now.

Think Progress is denouncing Bob Kerry for resurrecting a right-wing smear:

This evening on CNN’s The Situation Room, former Sen. Bob Kerrey asserted that Barack Obama had spent time “in a secular madrassa” and argued this was a “tremendous strength” for Obama…

Note to Kerrey: Barack Obama never attended a “secular madrassa”… The claim that Obama attended a madrassa didn’t come from blogs, but rather from right-wing outlets.

Bob Shaheen was fired for warning about what the Republicans are going to do to Obama:

The Republicans are not going to give up without a fight … and one of the things they’re certainly going to jump on is his drug use,” said Shaheen…Shaheen said Obama’s candor on the subject would “open the door” to further questions. “It’ll be, ‘When was the last time? Did you ever give drugs to anyone? Did you sell them to anyone?’” Shaheen said. “There are so many openings for Republican dirty tricks. It’s hard to overcome.”

Notice the repetition: they’re dropping their bombs inside containers discussing what the Republicans are going to say.

Note to Democrats: your guys are saying it, not ours.

Particularly dishonest is the jibe about the source of the Madrassa story. Think Progress blames this on Insight Magazine, and on Fox News for repeating the “lie.” But the Insight and Fox reports were about claims coming from inside the Clinton campaign. From Insight:

An investigation of Mr. Obama by political opponents within the Democratic Party has discovered that Mr. Obama was raised as a Muslim by his stepfather in Indonesia. Sources close to the background check, which has not yet been released, said Mr. Obama, 45, spent at least four years in a so-called Madrassa, or Muslim seminary, in Indonesia.

“He was a Muslim, but he concealed it,” the source said. “His opponents within the Democrats hope this will become a major issue in the campaign.”

And from Fox, a transcript from John Gibson’s “The Big Story”:

The New York senator has reportedly outed Obama’s madrassa past. That’s right, the Clinton team is reported to have pulled out all the stops to reveal something Obama would rather you didn’t know: that he was educated in a Muslim madrassa.

Once you’ve created a demon suit for your opponent, it’s convenient to don it while doing the nefarious things you’ve claimed your opponent is evil enough to do.

I’ve been politically aware since I was a teenager, almost 40 years. In all that time, the only public displays of outright racial hatred I’ve seen have come from the Left. Remember the “lawn jockey” depiction of Clarence Thomas? Remember Condi Rice as a thick-lipped parrot on George Bush’s finger? Ann Coulter sniffed out the veiled racism and misogyny of the Democrats’ talking points: after years of riffing about how stupid George Bush is and how the evil Neocons handle him, they finally found somebody they think he handles, and it’s the black chick.

Trent Lott gave up a Senate leadership role for approving Strom Thurmond’s sensible policy positions, not realizing that some would think he was referring to Jim Crow laws rather than law-and-order and limited government. Lott made an error. But these racist shots coming from the alleged Party of Racial Tolerance are not errors, they’re mean-spirited cheap shots, and they’re made assuming they’ll have meaning to Democrat voters. And it’s about time the Democrats gave up their lying, and admitted what’s becoming increasingly evident:

All the racists are Democrats. And it appears that the Democrats know it.

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May 20, 2008 @ 5:03 pm #

[…] I wrote a piece about how Hillary Clinton’s campaign had been dropping racial slurs, but wrapping them in words about what Republicans are going to be saying about Obama in the fall, thereby putting the blame for their own racist attacks on Republicans. […]

May 25, 2008 @ 1:12 pm #

[…] signature tactic has been to dangle bait in front of the worst impulses of human beings. If she thinks there are racists in the voting […]

June 21, 2008 @ 8:31 pm #

[…] “What the Republicans are going to say.” I’ve commented on this several times (here for starters, and also here, here, here, and here. Also note what I say about the Pennsylvania […]

June 17, 2009 @ 12:42 pm #

[…] of instances of the same approach during the Democratic primary season, from Hillary Clinton (see here, here, and here for starters.) Her supporters now complain of having been the victim of corrupt, […]

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