Sunday, January 13, 2008

No Need to Play this Backwards: Paul IS dead...

"I come to bury Caesar[Paul], not to praise him. The evil that men do lives after them." Julius Caesar( 3.2.76)

Indeed, "the fault dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in ourselves."(1.2.140-1) I do not want to spend too much time and space focusing on a candidate who is fading fast and irrelevant
but because Ron Paul raised $20 million and has thousands of well-intentioned lost souls who can grasp his bumper sticker ideology but evidently cannot access his own very public record, it's time to acknowledge the reality that the novelty of an anti-war Republican has turned into yet another right-wing fanatic with views on race that place him in the infamous company of his peers who deny the theory of evolution. The charade is over, Paul supporters.
I owe an apology to the Republicans. In an earlier post I said that they were treating Ron Paul like the crazy old man in the attic. Now I see why: He IS the crazy old man in the attic, actually the conspiracy-minded bigoted old man who doesn't even deserve the attic, or the basement for that matter. James Kirchick's article in The New Republic--"Angry White Man"--is devastating not because of anything Kirchick says, although his astute observation that the "Ron Paul Reports" published by Paul's supporters "reveal decades worth of obsession with conspiracies, sympathy for the right-wing militia movement, and deeply held bigotry against blacks, Jews, and gays. In short, they suggest that Ron Paul is not the plain-speaking antiwar activist his supporters believe they are backing--but rather a member in good standing of some of the oldest and ugliest traditions in American politics," but because of the words attributed to Paul himself: Read the reports themselves, especially you myopic apologists who claim The New Republic is liberal etc. Forget the article, simply follow the link to Paul's documents. They speak for themselves: Blacks as "Animals Take Over DC Zoo" ; "I've urged everyone in my family to know how to use a gun in self-defense. For the animals are coming." MLK holiday as "our annual Hate Whitey Day," support for KKK wizard David Duke and on and on.
All the typical code language that racists use all too well permeates the "Ron Paul Reports": AIDS was created in a World Health Organization lab; Israel setup the 1993 WTC bombings; "I miss the closet" for gays; all the black welfare mothers who take all our hardworking white folks' money(even though the FACT is that more whites collect welfare than any other race). The Paul apologists are already out there with their, "Dr. Paul would never condone this type of racism" etc. Obviously, it's difficult to have one's dreams shattered but such is life, and especially the cold, calculated, cynicism of Republican political discourse. In America there are LAWS against publishing words under someone else's name without his approval, so where is Ron Paul's libel lawsuit? Isn't that what they say about the steroid athletes: Why don't they sue these guys who say they took steroids? Good point, so what is Paul's excuse if he had nothing to do with all this hateful garbage published with his name splashed across the top of the pages in large, official-looking words? Obviously, he either wrote these hateful diatribes or approved of their publication. Otherwise, he would be screaming how he didn't know about them and that he was going to sue everyone involved, but Paul has offered only a meager and insincere attempt to disassociate himself from his own newsletters. As Kirchick noted, only stating the obvious, "it is diffcult to imagine how Paul could allow material consistently saturated in racism, homophobia, anti-Semitism, and conspiracy-mongering to be printed under his name for so long if he did not share these views. In that respect, whether or not Paul personally wrote the most offensive passages is almost beside the point. If he disagreed with what was being written under his name, you would think that at some point--over the course of decades--he would have done something about it."
He knows it's over and it can't happen soon enough. As Macduff said, "Fit to govern? No, not to live."(Macbeth 4.3.102-3)

As for the democrats, the unfortunate race war is brewing in Carolina, as I suggested it would well before the media understood the gravity of both Clintons' ill-chosen comments before New Hampshire, and Hillary continued to dig herself a deeper hole by implying that it was wonderful LBJ who actually got results in 1964. The problem is, Hillary, that 1964 was a decade after black leaders had been fighting the real war in the streets of America, often with little help from politicians from either party. Remember, this was the time period when all those racist Democrats fled to the Republican party in protest of integration and established the racist GOP that now dominates the South. It sure isn't the party of Lincoln anymore... No one should know that better than the Clintons, so what is the point in saying something as ill-advised as that? Yet there was Hillary Clinton on Meet the Press, awkward and uncomfortable, trying in vain to rationalize her husband's literally ignorant assertion that Obama had been given a free pass by the media(Russert reminded her that he himself questioned Obama about his war stance during his interview on the same show on November 11th, 2007). Moreover, the juxtaposition of Hillary's speech on the Senate floor and Obama's prophetic anti-war speech in 2002 essentially destroyed any notion that Clinton has better judgment, for in her zeal to be a strong woman, she allowed herself to be manipulated by the most dishonest administration in history: She showed herself as no more than another enabler for cowboy George and his reckless march to war against an insignificant country that had no tangible connection to the real war on terror, if there can even be such a thing. Obama's perceived paucity of legislative experience is insignificant compared to Clinton's reckless disregard for the truth and her inability to analyze the machinations of an administration defined by fraud and incompetence.
So why did Obama lose New Hampshire? Some suggest voter fraud, but it's more likely that Obama simply was overconfident and decided to get on his bicycle and run around the ring during the last few rounds instead of digging in and going toe-to-toe to earn the knockout. Playing Stevie Wonder's "Signed, Sealed, Delivered" at a concession speech was a painful reminder of a campaign that was looking past this fight and ended up losing a close decision. Personally, I think it was Bill's slump-busting that probably saved the day. While Hillary's supporters worked the phone banks and drove voters to the polls, Bill worked the slump-busters(a little side joke for the Jim Rome "clones"). Anyway, it was a monumental mistake to underestimate the Clinton political machine, and Obama's arrogant line at the debate may very well have struck a nerve with many women who have been treated dismissively by men. The wise move at that moment was to keep his mouth shut and let Hillary wallow in self-pity, not throw her a lifeline with an off-hand remark that would surely be viewed as offensive. It was not Obama's finest moment but losing New Hampshire by fewer than 3% is not anything to be too concerned about: The nomination is still Obama's to lose; he needs to show that he's a fighter, and he'll have plenty of chances to step it up as the race heads to the South. It's called the "Dirty South" for a reason, Barack, so get ready to get down in the mud and take it away this time. Be a closer. As David Mamet famously said, remember your ABCs: Always Be Closing. "Coffee's for closers", Barack, so close the show in Carolina, Nevada, and on to Feb 5th for the big showdown...

1 comment:

buriedalive said...

too many words. don't understand.