« Pretty good customer service, actually | HomePage | Why Educational Psychology? »

Wednesday, February 20, 20081203535800

You're a big Barack supporter?... Name his legislative accomplishments... Can you name any?

Of course, if Obama's beliefs actually match his voting record (unlikely, I think), this would be a good thing. From Red State:



Relatedly, Adrian (through Google Reader) links to this bizarre Slate piece, which wonders why criticism of Obama as a liberal doesn't hurt him in the Democratic primaries and caucuses.

Comments

Hilzoy goes over some of what he's done:

http://obsidianwings.blogs.com/obsidian_wings/2008/02/obama-actually.html

Including: nuclear non-proliferation stuff, securing stockpiles of conventional weapons (MANPADs), ethics stuff, open government database thing, screening Iraq vets for TBI, criminalizing voter intimidation, tech stuff, and some other stuff.

re: Greenwald's piece, the attacks weren't "Obama is a liberal", they were "Obama is a Communist because his parents are interracial," "obsessed with his blackness", "Obama's wife hates America," etc.

Posted by: Adrian | Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Quote the peonage by Obsidian Wings.

Certiainly, if you consider a legislative accomplishment to be something one voted for, every freshman Senator has a long list of legislative accomplishments!

If you consider it something that a candidate spent credibility on, such as the Orange Revolution [1] or health reform [2] - the list is much smaller.

Again, the argument that a Democratic candidate surviving attacks from the right and right-of-center in a Democratic nomination contest is odd. One might as well notes that John McCain triumphed, in spite of the best posts Daily Kos could write.

[1] http://tdaxp.blogspirit.com/archive/2005/05/12/the_clinton-gingrich_plan.html
[2] http://tdaxp.blogspirit.com/archive/2005/01/27/good_politicians.html

Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Greenwald doesn't link the attacks to Obama's success. He doesn't make the claim that "despite these despicable attacks, Obama still won by 19 points!" If he was making that point, he'd be linking to Clinton's attack ads. Instead he's just showing the attacks to show the workings of the right-wing attack machine, making the point that Obama will face much more of this in the future (with no prediction on whether it will impact Obama's polls or not).

Posted by: Adrian | Wednesday, February 20, 2008

What despicable attacks?

Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Wednesday, February 20, 2008

That National Review piece that slanders Obama as a possible closet Communist because a) his parents were mixed-race (and who else would marry someone of a different race in the 1960s other than Communists?) and b) some guy who tutored him was denounced by HUAC (as if that's proof of Communism). That's pretty despicable.

http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=NmM2NDQ3ZWQ1YWM0Y2QyZTUxMDdkY2M2OTJlNGE5MWE=

http://www.aim.org/aim-column/obamas-communist-mentor/

Posted by: Adrian | Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Adrian,

If I'm reading you correctly, you are describing the following paragraph by Lisa Schiffren as despicable:

"But maybe it's not so simple. Obama and I are roughly the same age. I grew up in liberal circles in New York City — a place to which people who wished to rebel against their upbringings had gravitated for generations. And yet, all of my mixed race, black/white classmates throughout my youth, some of whom I am still in contact with, were the product of very culturally specific unions. They were always the offspring of a white mother, (in my circles, she was usually Jewish, but elsewhere not necessarily) and usually a highly educated black father. And how had these two come together at a time when it was neither natural nor easy for such relationships to flourish? Always through politics. No, not the young Republicans. Usually the Communist Youth League. Or maybe a different arm of the CPUSA. But, for a white woman to marry a black man in 1958, or 60, there was almost inevitably a connection to explicit Communist politics. (During the Clinton Administration we were all introduced to then U. of Pennsylvania Professor Lani Guinier — also a half black/half Jewish, red diaper baby.)"

By way of analogy, consider the "very culturally specific unions" involving a graduate student marrying a Chinese national, say in the late 2000s. They were typically between a white husband (in my circles, he is usually protestant, but not necessarily) and usually a highly educated Chinese wife. And what was a resume check typical of those who would study overseas? Typically a connection to politics. No, not Greenpeace. Usually the Chinese would have a relationship with the Communist Youth League. Or maybe a different arm of the CCP. But for a Chinese woman to marry a graduate student in 2007 or 08, there was almost inevitably a connection to explicit Communist politics.

Certainly Lisa is making factual claims, which may be refuted or accepted. Likewise, my analogous paragraph also makes factual claims. I'm pretty sure my paragraph is correct, and Lisa's analogous paragraph seems reasonable.

Now, what I am sure of is that your commentary on Lisa's article "and who else would marry someone of a different race in the 1960s other than Communists?) " is a distortion. She's arguing a generaal trend, you argue as if she's maintaining a universal principle.

Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Barack Obama's primary legislative accomplishment was to pass his tenure in the notoriously corrupt Illinois General Assembly without offending a) the mighty Daley machine; b)the Afrocentric-White radical Progressive community activists; c)the now defunct but once mighty Illinois GOP or d) getting irrevocably tainted by political fixers who are known associates of the Chicago Outfit.

Which is why his most frequent vote tended to be "present".

Posted by: zenpundit | Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Zenpundit,

Are there any other modern Presidents whose main accomplishment was not angering anyone? Gerald Ford, perhaps?

Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Thursday, February 21, 2008

JFK, Reagan and GW Bush.

Posted by: Adrian | Thursday, February 21, 2008

Ronald Reagan had been Governor of California, President of the SAG, as well as an ideologue. "A Time for Choosing" / "Rendezvous with Destiny" was delivered in 1964 (16 years before his general election run).

GHW Bush had been Chief Liaison to China, Ambassador to the United Nations, Director of the CIA, head of the RNC, and a Congressman (first elected 22 years before his general election run).

I'm inclined to agree on JFK.

Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Thursday, February 21, 2008

Not GHW Bush, GW Bush.

Posted by: Adrian | Thursday, February 21, 2008

"Not GHW Bush, GW Bush."

Ah, gotcha.

It's striking how hard it is to keep track of the current buzz from the Obama camp: He will free us from the red state/blue state divide we've had for a generation... but like President Bush in 2000, he doesn't anger people!

Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Thursday, February 21, 2008

Well that's one of the things about running a decentralized campaign - you lose unity of message when you empower more and more people to speak for you.

Posted by: Adrian | Thursday, February 21, 2008

It makes it much easier to be all things for all people, however!

Interesting that Obama's campaign will be permanently faction-ridden, if this is true.

I assume therefore you reject the notion that Obama represents a break with red state/blue state politics as its existed since 1992?

Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Thursday, February 21, 2008

I am schizophrenic on Obama.

Obama's earlier rhetoric was "GOP stereotypes of Democrats are true, except for me, I'm different." That turned me off of him initially. Now that he's changed his message to stop promoting himself at the expense of his party, I feel its a little better.

Obama's a skilled politician, especially skilled in crafting a narrative that the media and lots of people lapped up. He cemented that narrative by working in a bipartisan way on issues that nobody cared about but were important (loose nukes, tech policy, etc.). That stuff was easy. The test of his "new politics" will be when he has to work on stuff that the GOP base actually cares about.

Whether he truly believes in his message or is using it to get elected, it is a real break from "old politics" of hierarchical control over your campaign. I haven't been following politics long enough to see whether others have tried the same thing (in 1992, I was 7 and 8 years old) but its certainly different from the way Hillary Clinton, Kerry, Gore and Bush ran their campaigns.

Posted by: Adrian | Thursday, February 21, 2008

Also, would you be kind enough to update this article with the follow up video I posted so it can be viewed from the front page?

Posted by: Jeffrey James | Monday, February 25, 2008

Dan,

Here is a follow up to the interview.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/23261748#23261748

BTW, I wonder where people like Limbaugh get the idea that Chris is somehow liberal bias.

Posted by: Jeffrey James | Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Post a comment