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Time to Ask McCain: "Have You No Sense of Decency Left?"

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: Barack Obama Race, John McCain, McCain Smear Campaign, Mccain Smears, Obama And Ayers, Obama Called Arab, Obama Jeremiah Wright, Video, gutter politics, Republicans, Neocons, PNAC, hate speech, angry mobs, Politics News )

- 3507 days ago -
The McCain campaign crossed the line today, from negative character attacks to the kind of character assassination that plays to the basest impulses and incites the most dangerous reaction.

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Blue Bunting (855)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 4:00 pm
The McCain campaign crossed the line today from negative character attacks to the kind of character assassination that plays to the basest impulses and incites the most dangerous reaction. We've seen the prelude this week in the McCain crowds and in Sarah Palin's well-rehearsed, carefully telepromptered and increasingly ugly diatribes. But the intent became undeniable with the new McCain ad that falsely charges that "Obama worked with terrorist William Ayers when it was convenient"--which all but alleges that the candidate was there planting bombs.

McCain had to back off and almost apologize at an event in Minnesota when a questioner in his crowd alleged that Obama was "an Arab." McCain meekly had to explain, over the evident unrest of his supporters, that Obama wasn't dangerous.

But who was responsible for leaving people to think that he was dangerous in the first place? The McCain campaign grab-bag of tarnished tactics has trafficked in soft hate and hard fears about "the other." It has been said that everything in America ultimately comes back to race. But with Republican campaigns in trouble, starting with Barry Goldwater and continuing with Nixon's "southern strategy" in 1968, it really always does come back to race.

The McCain forces have taken this to a new low; there is no way to deny the deliberate, conscious attempt to portray Obama as unAmerican; not "one of us" as Pat Buchanan said tonight on "Hardball"; someone "who doesn't see America as we do," in the venomous patois of Palin.

In all decency, it is at least worth mentioning, even as we note that Obama is not an Arab or a Moslem, that there is something profoundly unAmerican about denigrating all Arabs or all Moslems as suspect or evil. Or, for that matter, something profoundly unAmerican about playing to the old prejudices that many assumed would prevent any African-American from ever becoming President in their lifetimes. The appeal to intolerance is amplified by commentators like Buchanan and William Kristol, who urge the McCain campaign to pound away at Obama's former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. They have a list of names they want McCain to flourish and a wave of innuendos they want McCain to raise. Joe McCarthy would recognize this; it's the smear technique that he virtually patented. To borrow a phrase from that period, a phrase that shattered his reign of intimidation, maybe we ought to ask the McCain forces, the candidate and his supporting commentariat, "Have you no sense of decency left at all?"

I don't think McCain does.

And in effect he is sending a message to voters that he has no chance at all of winning if the campaign is waged on great issues like the economy. So as things get more serious in a deeply troubled America, the McCain campaign gets more frivolous. The campaign manager, Rick Davis, says the financial crash is for CNBC to discuss every day, not for the candidates. Instead, we hear about Ayers, ACORN (conveniently, a "community organization" that helps poor, and in many cases, black families) --and, of course, Obama's middle name. How much of his vaunted courage would it take for McCain to publicly rebuke, on the spot, any supporter who rolls out the name "Hussein" as an epithet that connects Obama to you-know-who?

The reality is that in a country facing two wars and a mounting economic crisis, these desparate and despicable appeals aren't working. Obama's lead is mounting, nationally and in the battleground states. But there is a threat here too that is all too real. When I heard someone in a Palin crowd yell out "traitor" as the candidate lashed out at the Democratic nominee, I thought of the full-page ad that appeared in a Dallas newspaper on the morning of Nov. 22, 1963. The headline--"Wanted for Treason"-- was sprawled across a poster-sized photo of President John F. Kennedy.

You don't put country first by running this kind of campaign.

Watch appearance on Hardball. (click on link above)

. (0)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 4:12 pm

In much the same way, Obama supporters have portrayed McCain as the "other". They have highlighted his being born in comfortable circumstances to a military family, his marriage to an heiress, and the like to somehow imply that makes him unable to govern a country of "ordinary" people. When, of course, his wealth has nothing to do with his ability to govern. In fact, one of the great demi-gods of the Democratic party was Franklin Delano Roosevelt - a man born with a silver spoon in his mouth if ever there was one! As was Kennedy.

So each side is equally guilty of this type of unfair vilification.

Blue Bunting (855)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 4:24 pm
RepubliCON$ have run some of the nastiest campaigns I've ever seen, Lindsey ... and let's not forget that the last Republican depre$$ion is recurring once again; they are fiscally irrtesponsible' history proves it.

June M (395)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 4:30 pm
I guess McCain HAS to do that so others will know who 'THE OTHER ONE!' is and what they are ALL ABOUT! As it is many people are voting for CHANGE! If that's what they REALLY want, they may get it. People aare looking for 'YOUTH' in their president but aren't looking any further than that their face. They aren't checking out their background, finding they were involved in BOMBINGS and other shady and ILLEGAL activities. They are not choosing a a presidential candidate who will be PROUD of AMERICA and RESPECT her. They are interested in Socialism and breaking ties with what Aerica has long been and is known for. Many voters are not choosing their candidate wisely. You judge a person by THE FRIENDS THEY KEEP and NOT the false promises they make. They don't even care what his REAL name is. Is this name made up? His name may be a pseudonym. Since he doesn't want to be known as BOMBER, did he change it to BAMA? What message is he giving us i his name?

. (0)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 4:39 pm

June, I may not like Obama; however, you're doing just what I was talking about. Suggesting that his name "may be" a "pseudonym" and what "message" his name is sending. And that he was "involved" in bombings.

Obama, by all believable accounts, was born with his name. It doesn't have any meaning except for being a family name, I believe. And I've certainly never seen any evidence that he was involved in any bombings.

And Blue - Democrats are often quite irresponsible fiscally as well - it's just a matter of what each party spends the taxpayer's money on. Democrats are more likely to spend it on welfare programs and other "entitlements" while Republicans are more likely to spend it on the military and other things.

And, lest we forget, it was a Democrat (FDR) who started us on this long road of massive federal spending.

I also don't like socialism and therefore will vote Libertarian (although, of course, since it will undoubtedly come down to McCain or Obama - I'd prefer McCain as the lesser of two evils.)

Blue Bunting (855)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 4:54 pm
Lindsey, FYI:

Democratic Presidents Are Better For The Economy Than Republicans

Here's the Proof : Politicians Lie, Numbers Don't And the numbers show that
Democrats are better for the economy than Republicans.

June M (395)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 5:19 pm
Oh, really Blue? So you mean to say Democrats are better for the environment because THEY'RE BETTER LIARS. OSAMABAMA IS NOT RUNNING FOR ELECTION TO MAKE THINGS BETTER! HE JUST WANTS CHANGE AND HOPES TO BEAT DOWN EVERYTHING OUR FOREFATHERS FOUGHT FOR. I wouldn't dobt it if he and ACORN are behind the ILLEGAL VOTING, in all states where it is ocurring, so he can be elected.

. (0)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 5:23 pm

June, why would Obama take that kind of risk - when he knows that the voters don't elect the President? Even if 100% of the voters vote for Obama, he isn't going to win - unless he wins the electoral college.

Our votes for President don't count (there have been several Presidents elected who lost the popular vote.)

So it would be foolish indeed for him to risk his reputation trying to illegally obtain votes that won't matter a hill of beans to him in the end.

Arielle S (313)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 5:37 pm
June, I'm not looking for youth in a president - I'm looking for someone who can bring this country together instead of ripping it apart. I'm looking for someone who has plans to bring jobs back to this country, someone who will help restore the environment, someone who knows what it is like to be hungry, worried about money, or have a loved one in Iraq. I'm looking for someone who knows how to mediate and negotiate, someone who can keep his cool under rough conditions, someone who is going to work hard instead of going on vacation half his term, someone who takes this country and the people he represents seriously. Someone who has a vice president that is mature enough and experienced enough to take over if necessary. Someone who talks about hope and who gives hope - I don't care if Obama's name is "Purple Dragon Monster" - if he can do what I think he can do, I'm voting for him. I don't care if he's green with yellow polka dots - if he is half the man I think he is, I'm voting for him. I don't care if he's jewish, muslim or hindu - if he's not trying to incite a riot, I'm voting for him. This is not about Democrat or Republican or Chinese checkers - this is about country. It's time we all started thinking like good citizens.

Past Member (0)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 5:40 pm
June, were you the one that sent out the absentee ballots with osama on them--sounds as if you might be the one. It sure wasn't the democrats that you hate so much. You are spreading hate, do you realize this or don't you care?

June M (395)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 5:58 pm
I'm not purposely spreading hate. I'm trying to open peoples eyes to what they want for CHANGE. OSAMABAMA has no experience in anything. He never fought FOR America. He wants to begin a new. Throw away everything America is today and all its citizens have fought for in the past. He wants to change this country to OBAMANATION! Would our national anthem then become, "I'd like to Teach the World to Sing"? Who would he want in his cabinet? More friends of his like Bill Ayers and friends of ACORN???? He's a VERY SCARY and RADICAL CHOICE TO MAKE.

Blue Bunting (855)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 11:25 pm
What drivel you've posted, June; you should be ashamed of yourself buying into the ReTHUGniCON "hate speech" talking points.

Prove any of wha tyou said is true, I double dare you!

Blue Bunting (855)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 11:27 pm
Frank Rich had this to say in his latest NYTimes OpEd:

IF you think way back to the start of this marathon campaign, back when it seemed preposterous that any black man could be a serious presidential contender, then you remember the biggest fear about Barack Obama: a crazy person might take a shot at him.

Some voters told reporters that they didn’t want Obama to run, let
alone win, should his very presence unleash the demons who have stalked America from Lincoln to King. After consultation with Congress, Michael Chertoff, the homeland security secretary, gave Obama a Secret Service detail earlier than any presidential candidate in our history — in May 2007, some eight months before the first Democratic primaries.

“I’ve got the best protection in the world, so stop worrying,” Obama reassured his supporters. Eventually the country got conditioned to his appearing in large arenas without incident (though I confess that the first loud burst of fireworks at the end of his convention stadium speech gave me a start). In America, nothing does succeed like success. The fear receded.

Until now. At McCain-Palin rallies, the raucous and insistent cries of “Treason!” and “Terrorist!” and “Kill him!” and “Off with his head!” as well as the uninhibited slinging of racial epithets, are actually something new in a campaign that has seen almost every conceivable twist. They are alarms. Doing nothing is not an option.

All’s fair in politics. John McCain and Sarah Palin have every right to bring up William Ayers, even if his connection to Obama is minor, even if Ayers’s Weather Underground history dates back to Obama’s childhood, even if establishment Republicans and Democrats alike have
collaborated with the present-day Ayers in educational reform. But it’s not just the old Joe McCarthyesque guilt-by-association game, however spurious, that’s going on here. Don’t for an instant believe the many mindlessly “even-handed” journalists who keep saying that the McCain
campaign’s use of Ayers is the moral or political equivalent of the Obama campaign’s hammering on Charles Keating.

What makes them different, and what has pumped up the Weimar-like rage at McCain-Palin rallies, is the violent escalation in rhetoric, especially (though not exclusively) by Palin. Obama “launched his political career in the living room of a domestic terrorist.” He is “palling around with terrorists” (note the plural noun). Obama is “not a man who sees America the way
you and I see America.” Wielding a wildly out-of-context Obama quote, Palin slurs him as an enemy of American troops.

By the time McCain asks the crowd “Who is the real Barack Obama?” it’s no surprise that someone cries out “Terrorist!” The rhetorical conflation of Obama with terrorism is complete. It is stoked further by the repeated invocation of Obama’s middle name by surrogates introducing McCain and Palin at these rallies. This sleight of hand at once synchronizes with the poisonous Obama-is-a-Muslim e-mail blasts and shifts the brand of terrorism from Ayers’s Vietnam-era variety to the radical Islamic threats of today.

That’s a far cry from simply accusing Obama of being a guilty-by-association radical leftist. Obama is being branded as a potential killer and an accessory to past attempts at murder. “Barack Obama’s friend tried to kill my family” was how a McCain press release last week packaged the remembrance of a Weather Underground incident from 1970 — when Obama was 8.

We all know what punishment fits the crime of murder, or even potential murder, if the security of post-9/11 America is at stake. We all know how self-appointed “patriotic” martyrs always justify taking the law into their own hands.

Obama can hardly be held accountable for Ayers’s behavior 40 years ago, but at least McCain and Palin can try to take some responsibility for the behavior of their own supporters in 2008. What’s troubling here is not only the candidates’ loose inflammatory talk but also their refusal to step in promptly and strongly when someone responds to it with bloodthirsty threats in a crowded arena. Joe Biden had it exactly right when he expressed concern last week that “a leading American politician who might be vice president of the United States would not just stop midsentence and turn and condemn that.” To stay silent is to pour gas on the fires.

It wasn’t always thus with McCain. In February he loudly disassociated himself from a speaker who brayed “Barack Hussein Obama” when introducing him at a rally in Ohio. Now McCain either backpedals with tardy, pro forma expressions of respect for his opponent or lets second-tier campaign underlings release boilerplate disavowals after ugly incidents like the chilling Jim Crow-era flashback last week when a Florida sheriff ranted about “Barack Hussein Obama” at a Palin rally while in full uniform.

From the start, there have always been two separate but equal questions about race in this election. Is there still enough racism in America to prevent a black man from being elected president no matter what? And, will Republicans play the race card? The jury is out on the first question until Nov. 4. But we now have the unambiguous answer to the second: Yes.

McCain, who is no racist, turned to this desperate strategy only as Obama started to pull ahead. The tone was set at the Republican convention, with Rudy Giuliani’s mocking dismissal of Obama as an “only in America” affirmative-action baby. We also learned then that the McCain campaign had recruited as a Palin handler none other than Tucker Eskew, the South Carolina consultant who had worked for George W. Bush in the notorious 2000 G.O.P. primary battle where the McCains and their adopted Bangladeshi daughter were slimed by
vicious racist rumors.

No less disconcerting was a still-unexplained passage of Palin’s convention speech: Her use of an unattributed quote praising small-town America (as opposed to, say, Chicago and its community organizers) from Westbrook Pegler, the mid-century Hearst columnist famous for his anti-Semitism, racism and violent rhetorical excess. After an assassin tried to kill F.D.R. at a Florida rally and murdered Chicago’s mayor instead in 1933, Pegler wrote that it was “regrettable that Giuseppe Zangara shot the wrong man.” In the ’60s, Pegler had a wish for Bobby Kennedy: “Some white patriot of the Southern tier will spatter his spoonful of brains in public premises before the snow

This is the writer who found his way into a speech by a potential vice president at a national political convention. It’s astonishing there’s been no demand for a public accounting from the McCain campaign. Imagine if Obama had quoted a Black Panther or Louis Farrakhan — or William Ayers — in Denver.

The operatives who would have Palin quote Pegler have been at it ever since. A key indicator came two weeks after the convention, when the McCain campaign ran its first ad tying Obama to the mortgage giant Fannie Mae. Rather than make its case by using a legitimate link between Fannie and Obama (or other Democratic leaders), the McCain forces chose a former Fannie executive who had no real tie to Obama or his campaign but did have a black face that could dominate the ad’s visuals.

There are no black faces high in the McCain hierarchy to object to these tactics. There hasn’t been a single black Republican governor, senator or House member in six years. This is a campaign where Palin can repeatedly declare that Alaska is “a microcosm of America” without anyone even wondering how that might be so for a state whose tiny black and Hispanic populations are each roughly one-third the national average. There are indeed so few people of color at McCain events that a black senior writer from The Tallahassee Democrat was mistakenly ejected by the Secret Service from a campaign rally in Panama City in August, even though he was standing with other reporters and showed his credentials. His only apparent infraction was to look glaringly out of place.

Could the old racial politics still be determinative? I’ve long been skeptical of the incessant press prognostications (and liberal panic) that this election will be decided by racist white men in the Rust Belt. Now even the dimmest bloviators have figured out that Americans are riveted by the color green, not black — as in money, not energy. Voters are looking for a leader who might help rescue them, not a reckless gambler whose lurching responses to the economic meltdown (a campaign “suspension,” a mortgage-buyout stunt that changes daily) are as unhinged as his wanderings around the debate stage.

To see how fast the tide is moving, just look at North Carolina. On July 4 this year — the day that the godfather of modern G.O.P. racial politics, Jesse Helms, died — The Charlotte Observer reported that strategists of both parties agreed Obama’s chances to win the state fell “between slim and none.” Today, as Charlotte reels from the implosion of Wachovia, the McCain-Obama race is a dead heat in North Carolina and Helms’s Republican successor in the Senate, Elizabeth Dole, is looking like a goner.

But we’re not at Election Day yet, and if voters are to have their final say, both America and Obama have to get there safely. The McCain campaign has crossed the line between tough negative campaigning and inciting vigilantism, and each day the mob howls louder. The onus is on the man who says he puts his country first to call off the dogs, pit bulls and otherwise.

Past Member (0)
Saturday October 11, 2008, 11:42 pm
do you all remember that halloween movie where people put on masks and sat in front of the t.v. only to have their brains eaten out by creepy things when the AD played? Do you see it like i do here and now but with out the mask. Heck no need for one now -the veil of perversions got em suckered -been being controled by government fear mongering since we were kids. the ones who have yet to peel the crap off are the ones who still believe the gimmick. i knew those ADs would mind control some of the sheep. conspiracy? You Betcha.)

Past Member (0)
Sunday October 12, 2008, 12:01 am
-I do mean McShame ADs -they are all glued together with tid bits of this and that -kinda burns the eyes if you study them too hard -facts don't run away from themselves like his commercials do -spooky.

. (0)
Monday October 13, 2008, 4:49 am

June writes: "I'm trying to open peoples eyes to what they want for CHANGE. OSAMABAMA has no experience in anything."

June, how about opening YOUR eyes just might help!!! Seems to me that, just like McCain & Palin, you're a "little" bigoted...

Cynthia Davis (340)
Monday October 13, 2008, 7:06 am
You are all wasting your time with June. She has been Brainwashed by the Republican media. She probably watches Fox News and thinks she is hearing the truth. I am afraiad there are many more Zombies like her out there and the only way to combat this is to be sure to vote Nov. 4th.

. (0)
Monday October 13, 2008, 7:16 am

Many people, on both sides, act like June. It isn't limited to McCain supporters. And it definitely isn't limited to politics.

It happens when people become so invested in one particular mindset that they will go to any lengths to support their beliefs - even if it means distorting the truth.

Blue Bunting (855)
Monday October 13, 2008, 1:27 pm
Meltdown : Economist James Galbraith shows how (neo)conservatives engineered financial free-fall

the last paragraph is very apropos:

What can America do to save itself? Simple, says Galbraith. Bring back the real ideology of free markets. If Fannie or Freddie have to fail, let them fail. New mortgage guarantors will spring up. When you think about it, Fannie and Freddie were just in the insurance business, plain and simple. The market will recover. Have faith. Also, start repairing government. Publicly finance campaigns and elections. Send the lobbyists packing. Finally, start regulating again. Regulate the new Wall Street—its new products, i.e., swaps and derivatives, and its new services, i.e., prime brokerage. Robber barons cannot be expected to police themselves. And for God's sake, stop labeling yourself and others as "liberals" or "conservatives." Those labels are meaningless. There's only the super-rich and the rest of us. There's only predators and prey.

Al B (27)
Monday October 13, 2008, 10:17 pm
I agree with you Cynthia, there is just no reaching the likes of Maria and Lindsey. Still, there may be those that might be here for the first time, see their lies, and be swayed by them.

The hypocrisy is really deep this election. If it weren't so numbingly tragic, it would be funny how these few "concerned" posters have so completely ignored the crimes committed in this country by republicans. Now they try to convince us that not voting for more theft and killing is an awful mistake.

Lindsey, what mindset would cause you to vote for a man who supports George W. Bush, or continue the process of turning the US into a third world nation?

If you, Maria, or anyone else, can give me one core issue, stripped of the crispy coating provided by the GOP, that causes you to support republicans. What would the issue(s) be?

Blue, I applaud your tireless efforts working to bring reason to madness.


Past Member (0)
Monday October 13, 2008, 10:50 pm
mkkkain palintology association is a brain washing occult!!! they manipulate and twist the words of those who call them out. only evil plays such games. they call reality lies or seduce you to evade it -this is deceit on the highest level. please obama is not our saviour -but he is the one to unite us and bring us into the next stage of humanity -he has good solid plans concerning our welfare -and they are on the table. unlike the secrets agendas of the delusional side. vote for a third party if you must -but open your eyes to the red vote -you are the one who will have to live with that choice once your eyes have become open.

al, i hope you were talking about another maria -the one in here was just quoting june -and after added her good two sense right below it. i often have to read a post twice because i am often on the defense -thinking it may be the other maria, lol. in fact i did this one. no offense maria c. -i'll learn very quickly to recognize you at first sight:)

. (0)
Tuesday October 14, 2008, 5:37 am

Al, as I've said many times, I am not voting for McCain. I'm Libertarian and will be voting for Barr.

Cynthia Davis (340)
Tuesday October 14, 2008, 6:51 am
Blue wrote "And for God's sake, stop labeling yourself and others as "liberals" or "conservatives." Those labels are meaningless. There's only the super-rich and the rest of us. There's only predators and prey."
I agree. But there are so many out there that don't understand this and they are lead around by the nose like Zombies by the connivingly super rich which own our media most of which are Republican.

Blue Bunting (855)
Tuesday October 14, 2008, 2:25 pm
RepubliCON$ are taching hatred and violence:

Palin supporter taunts protesting Dems with 'Obama monkey'

McCain Volunteers Taught to Accuse Obama of Terrorism

"Kill Him!" Shouted -- Again -- At Palin Rally


Al B (27)
Tuesday October 14, 2008, 10:22 pm

He's nothing more than a watered down McCain clone from what I can see.

His policies on education ignore the realities of working families, by placing he burden of screening multiple education resources, and educational budget concerns. I don't know about you, but most of the people I know have to juggle two jobs to support their families and raise their children with the time they have left. Bar wants to give them more hoops to jump through.

What makes anyone think educational institutions run by private companies would be cheap?We already have the infrastructure in place to educate our children, it's far more cost effective to make sure the existing system works.

His tax policies seem to be based on the assumption that businesses are over taxed, when the reality of the situation is almost reversed. Of the nation's top companies, a full 25% pay no taxes whatsoever. The majority of the current tax responsibility is carried by working families.

What is so attractive about Barr?

Blue Bunting (855)
Wednesday October 15, 2008, 1:25 am

I'm looking forward to the election results. There is no question that there remains a good deal of racism -- conscious and unconscious, individual and institutional -- in our country. But the choice for many white working class people between their interests and ideals and the interests of an oligarchy hasn't been clearer since the waning of Reconstruction.

Certainly the process of defeating racism will be arduous and ongoing and the 'dialog' on race will not always be pretty. Sometimes you need to lance the boil before you can cure an infection.

But I am encouraged.

Compare the comments of Ed Rendell in the run up to the Pennsylvania primary who doubted that Pennsylvanians would vote for a black man to the polls currently coming from that state.

Thomas Smith (0)
Wednesday October 15, 2008, 8:58 am
i am tired of the trash talk i have been a republician all my voting life. This year i will vote a strate ticket and it will not be republician.

Blue Bunting (855)
Wednesday October 15, 2008, 8:40 pm
Politics in the Zeros: Spread the meme. Republicans are the party that wrecked America. John McCain’s long history with bank failures and financial scandals makes him uniquely ‘qualified’ to speak to the current crisis.

The next time a Republican friend says McCain is ready to Regulate the financial world... Refer them to
for a really long list of all the DEREGULATION McCain has supported over the past 26 years to get us into this mess.

Then suggest a vote for Obama.
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