Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Olbermann :Hillary Attacks Obama & Plays The Politics of Fear

Anyway here's Keith Olbermann accusing Hillary Clinton of playing the fear card and questioning the sincerity of her tears.
Hillary Clinton, attacking Obama
Hillary Clinton plays the Al Qaeda Fear Card
Is she saying that a vote for Obama is a vote for more terrorists attacks ?
The Politics of Fear she uses it like the Republicans and Bush/Cheney & co.
Is Hillary's crying real or staged - is it real- Like Nixon's Checkers Speech moment 1952*( see below)

also see:Arianna Huffington Obama Wins Iowa: Why Everyone Has a Reason to Celebrate January 3, 2008

Even if your candidate didn't win tonight, you have reason to celebrate. We all do.

Barack Obama's stirring victory in Iowa -- down home, folksy, farm-fed, Midwestern, and 92 percent white Iowa -- says a lot about America, and also about the current mindset of the American voter.

Because tonight voters decided that they didn't want to look back. They wanted to look into the future -- as if a country exhausted by the last seven years wanted to recapture its youth.

Bush's re-election in 2004 was a monument to the power of fear and fear-mongering. Be Very Afraid was Bush/Cheney's Plans A through Z. The only card in the Rove-dealt deck. And it worked. America, its vision distorted by the mushroom clouds conjured by Bush and Cheney, made a collective sprint to the bomb shelters in our minds, our lizard brains responding to fear rather than hope.

And the Clintons -- their Hillary-as-incumbent-strategy sputtering -- followed the Bush blueprint in Iowa and played the fear card again and again and again.

Be afraid of Obama, they warned us. Be afraid of something new, something different. He might meet with our enemies. His middle name is Hussein. He went to a madrassa school. A vote for him would be like rolling the dice, the former president said on Charlie Rose.

And the people of Iowa heard him, and chose to roll the dice.

Arianna Huffington is hopeful that Americans will not fall for the Politics of Fear . Unfortunately Hillary Clinton believes in the Politics of Fear and hopes to convince the electorate that she is the one who can protect America from the Terrorists who seem to be everywhere .So she wishes to continue with America being in Perpetual War . Like the Neocons and Religious Right she plays on the notion that America is involved in a Holy War and a Clash of Civilizations in which America represents the forces of " good " against the forces of " evil " . The prevailing attitude is that only America understands the nature of the present struggle and conflict. Like Bush & Co. she sees arguments over the use of torture and other measures as relatively unimportant when facing such overwhelming forces of evil.

But in the end Hillary is acting on the cynical belief that most Americans want another decisive strong leader who will in their view protect America . The disturbing reality which Hillary fully grasps is that the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of innocent people in Iraq or elsewhere who are not American is of little consequence to Hillary or the American electorate .

So the chances are slim that Hillary will reverse the course and policies of perpetual war that the United States is currently engaged in. So she is not going to take on the corporations ( Halliburton etc.) or private contractors ( such as Blackwater) who are making obscene profits off of the War in Iraq. Nor is she going to threaten the status quo by investigating the wrong-doing of the Bush Regime .

In the end it is a matter of the status quo of those who believe America can do no wrong and that the world or other nations or the United Nations have no right to question or criticize American foreign policies such as declaring war unilaterally or torturing detainees or even suspending the rights of American citizens in this time of war. And to paraphrase Keith Olbermann "it is war today, war tomorrow and war forever". This is the future of America since diplomacy and compromise are see as a sign of weakness so let the bombs drop where they may .

Here are a couple of articles to consider in trying to figure out which of the candidates represent more of the same and who stands for taking on the effort and struggle to rebuild America and to re-establish the ideals for which America claims to stand for.

Change vs. Status Quo; Poll Shows Obama Surge By Scott Galindez t r u t h o u t Monday 07 January 2008

Manchester, NH - The battle lines are drawn in New Hampshire. Since change won big in Iowa, all the candidates are trying to paint themselves as agents of change. In back-to-back debates in Manchester on Saturday night, many of the candidates attempted to position themselves as the change candidate; on the GOP side one succeeded, Mitt Romney. In an attempt to label Romney a flip-flopper, Sen. John McCain said, 'one thing is for sure, you are the change candidate' to Romney.

On the Democratic side, John Edwards and Sen. Barack Obama teamed up on Sen. Hillary Clinton, who Edwards labeled at the status quo candidate. Senator Edwards even defended Senator Obama from an attack by Senator Clinton:

"We have a fundamental difference about the way you bring about change. But both of us are powerful voices for change."

"And if I might add, we finished first and second in the Iowa caucus, I think in part as a result of that."

"Now, what I would say this: Any time you speak out powerfully for change, the forces of status quo attack. That's exactly what happens. It's fine to have a disagreement about health care. To say that Senator Obama is having a debate with himself from some Associated Press story I think is just not - that's not the kind of discussion we should be having. I think that every time this happens, what will occur - every time he speaks out for change, every time I fight for change, the forces of status quo are going to attack - every single time. And what we have to remember - and this is the overarching issue here, because what we really need in New Hampshire and in future state primaries, is we need an unfiltered debate between the agents of change about how we bring about that change. Because we have differences about that. But the one thing I do not argue with him about is he believes deeply in change. And I believe deeply in change. And any time you're fighting for that - I mean, I didn't hear these kind of attacks from Senator Clinton when she was ahead. Now that she's not, we hear them." And any time you speak out - any time you speak out for change, this is what happens."

from Edwards Reconsidered by Norman SolomonJanuary 05, 2008 AlterNetznet

...Edwards was the most improved presidential candidate of 2007. He sharpened his attacks on corporate power and honed his calls for economic justice. He laid down a clear position against nuclear power. He explicitly challenged the power of the insurance industry and the pharmaceutical giants.

And he improved his position on Iraq to the point that, in an interview with the New York Times a couple of days ago, he said: "The continued occupation of Iraq undermines everything America has to do to reestablish ourselves as a country that should be followed, that should be a leader." Later in the interview, Edwards added: "I would plan to have all combat troops out of Iraq at the end of nine to ten months, certainly within the first year."

Now, apparently, Edwards is one of three people with a chance to become the Democratic presidential nominee this year. If so, he would be the most progressive Democrat to top the national ticket in more than half a century.

The main causes of John Edwards' biggest problems with the media establishment have been tied in with his firm stands for economic justice instead of corporate power.

Weeks ago, when the Gannett-chain-owned Des Moines Register opted to endorse Hillary Clinton this time around, the newspaper's editorial threw down the corporate gauntlet: "Edwards was our pick for the 2004 nomination. But this is a different race, with different candidates. We too seldom saw the positive, optimistic campaign we found appealing in 2004. His harsh anti-corporate rhetoric would make it difficult to work with the business community to forge change."

Many in big media have soured on Edwards and his "harsh anti-corporate rhetoric." As a result, we're now in the midst of a classic conflict between corporate media sensibilities and grassroots left-leaning populism.

On Wednesday, Edwards launched a TV ad in New Hampshire with him saying at a rally: "Corporate greed has infiltrated everything that's happening in this democracy. It's time for us to say, 'We're not going to let our children's future be stolen by these people.' I have never taken a dime from a Washington lobbyist or a special interest PAC and I'm proud of that.

from the Los Angeles Times
Has Obama stolen or borrowed John Edwards style and strategy
Working-class voters have been migrating to the former North Carolina senator in recent weeks, prompting a shift in strategy.By Peter Wallsten, Maria L. LaGanga and Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers December 29, 2007

CLINTON, IOWA -- He knocks CEOs who "dump" employee pensions while "pocketing bonuses." He laments Maytag workers who "labored all their lives only to see their jobs shipped overseas." He recalls humble beginnings and says his experience is "rooted in the lives of the people."

That kind of hard-driving populism has formed the core of John Edwards' campaign for president. But those words have come this week from Barack Obama -- one of Edwards' chief rivals for the Democratic nomination -- who has recalibrated his campaign to appeal to working-class voters before Thursday's caucuses.

With Iowa's first-in-the-nation nominating event looming, Obama has shifted away from his almost singular emphasis on transcending Washington's partisan divisions -- a message that appeals to upper-income and independent voters who form a minority of caucus-goers. Instead, he is aiming for the working-class voters who are the party's core, and who have been moving to Edwards in growing numbers over the last few weeks.

The two candidates' campaign speeches and advertising sound nearly identical now -- stressing the needs and struggles of working people and the desire for change.

And each man is attacking the other's populist credentials -- often chiding one another more than they do Hillary Rodham Clinton, the national front-runner, who remains locked in a tight race in Iowa. The New York senator has built her base on a foundation of older voters and women.

"It's the race within the race," said Democratic strategist Chris Lehane, a former Clinton White House aide who is not working on a campaign. "Hillary has a block of demographics that is more identifiable, but Obama and Edwards are still vying for votes between themselves."

Obama's focus on the former North Carolina senator became apparent last week, when he criticized Edwards for ads on his behalf that have been paid for by a labor-union-affiliated political committee.

Edwards long has criticized the influence of such organizations, and Obama was seeking to undermine Edwards' claim of being a Washington outsider who would fight special interests.

Then Obama, a supporter of free trade, launched a television ad in Iowa that talked about the devastation left by an American business that moved its plant to China.

The shift came into even sharper view Friday as both men crisscrossed Iowa. They even made simultaneous, late-afternoon stops in the working-class town of Clinton.

"You've got CEOs making more in 10 minutes than workers make in an entire year," Obama said.

... Edwards blasted a political system hijacked by "a small band of profiteers that has sold out America in selfish service of their greed and power."

In shifting his focus to Edwards, Obama in effect is acknowledging that Edwards poses a major threat.

As for Obama some claim that beyond being charismatic and giving a good speech there may not be much substance when it comes to policies .

From Andy Martin says Barack Obama is the "teleprompter" candidate"

2008-01-05 - Martin says Obama is not the "new" Martin Luther King or Robert Kennedy. Obama is an uncertain speaker in unscripted environments such as campaign debates. "Herd" media overlook the shakiness of Obama's "stale" speech. Will they notice in New Hampshire?

Executive Editor

Why do I disagree with the herd about Obama? First, they are listening, but not seeing, what is happening. Second, Obama has yet to demonstrate the greatness of a truly powerful speaker. Finally, his "speech" is getting stale.

First, I am not a big television watcher. But on election nights I have to watch, to write, and so I watched. When Obama went on the stage to speak I was looking for something, but couldn't see it: a teleprompter. It wasn't clear whether there was prompter there. Only in watching reruns the next day was the presence of the prompter clear.

The teleprompter was an Andy Martin "gotcha" item. Whether I am on the battlefield or sitting on a couch, or even a bar, I look for the "gotcha" indication that betrays the true state of mind of the moment.

The prompter tells me a lot about Obama (sort of like a doctor diagnosing the patient, long-distance in this case). First, Obama was probably the last to speak Thursday night because he had people writing his speech. Second, and more importantly, he did not write his speech. Finally, someone wrote his words for him.

The teleprompter incident also explains for me a disconnect that some in the media have legitimately observed: that Obama delivers "great" speeches but does poorly in debates. Why? Because when he doesn't have people to write for him in a debate, his own words end up faltering. And so, Obama can deliver a speech, but he can't compose one on the fly. His words are someone else's.

Obama was not speaking from the heart in Iowa; he was speaking off a teleprompter.

Now, second, to Martin Luther King. King did write his own material. There is no evidence that King had a teleprompter, or that he had a flock of hidden speechwriters composing his speeches for him. King was the real thing. King's words have endured because they were so powerful; they were so powerful because he wrote them and because he delivered them spontaneously.

And now for a bit of a reality check on Hillary Clinton's negative campaigning .

What is of concern is to what extent is Hillary Clinton is merely saying whatever she believes will get her nominated and eventually into the White House . Is winning all that matters to her. And are American women afraid not to support Hillary since this would show they were not committed to the sister hood. Are they going to vote for her no matter what her policies are.

also see Arianna Huffington's article -here's a snipit: Portrait in Cynicism: Hillary Attacks Obama from Every Angle, January 7, 2008

Hillary Clinton has apparently decided on which lines of attack to use against Barack Obama in New Hampshire: all of them.

When it started, Clinton's poll-tested candidacy came down to telling voters, "Whatever you like, that's what I am."

But it turns out that, so far, what voters like is Obama. So now her sputtering campaign strategy has shifted to telling voters, "Whatever you don't like, that's what Obama is."

Clinton and her surrogates are attacking from every direction, hoping something will stick.

The attacks are as varied as they are contemptible. Let's take a look at the dirty laundry list. Put on your galoshes, the mud is mighty thick.

1. Obama is too liberal. HuffPost's Tom Edsall reports: "Hillary's aides point to Obama's extremely progressive record as a community organizer, state senator and candidate for Congress, his alliances with 'left-wing' intellectuals in Chicago's Hyde Park community, and his liberal voting record on criminal defendants' rights as subjects for examination."

Read the whole article at Huffington Post.

* Nixon's Checkers Speech :
See transcript at the entire Nixon speech explaining the qustionable financial contributions to his campaign.
Senator Nixon's Checkers Speech
September 23, 1952

" One other thing I probably should tell you because if we don't they'll probably be saying this about me too, we did get something-a gift-after the election. A man down in Texas heard Pat on the radio mention the fact that our two youngsters would like to have a dog. And, believe it or not, the day before we left on this campaign trip we got a message from Union Station in Baltimore saying they had a package for us. We went down to get it. You know what it was.

It was a little cocker spaniel dog in a crate that he'd sent all the way from Texas. Black and white spotted. And our little girl-Tricia, the 6-year old-named it Checkers. And you know, the kids, like all kids, love the dog and I just want to say this right now, that regardless of what they say about it, we're gonna keep it. "

if interested watch full speech on YOUTUBE:

take care,

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