Sunday, 23 March 2008

swift boat, v.t.

How exactly are Barack Obama’s problems with Jeremiah Wright a swift boating? I like Obama about as much as your average Republican-leaning academic blogger with libertarian leanings, but it’s hard to see that there’s much that’s unfair about attacking a political candidate who willingly associates himself on a weekly basis with a pastor who frequently crosses the line that separates legitimate critiques of American race relations and delusional paranoia.

James Joyner made much the same point Thursday, in reference to a YouTube video that’s been making the rounds and the basis for Sullivan’s defense of his favored candidate:

Does the video play on the fears that some whites have about angry black men? Sure. Mostly, though, it seeks to undermine Obama’s portrait of himself as mainstream. It’s more than a little unfair but that’s the nature of these mashups. It’s no different than the various ads of one candidate morphing into an unpopular politician that we’ve seen over the years. And it’s frankly much tamer than the infamous 1964 ad that implied Barry Goldwater would get us annihilated in a nuclear war or the 2000 NAACP ad featuring the daughter of James Byrd stating that “when Governor George W. Bush refused to support hate-crime legislation, it was like my father was killed all over again.” Goodness, I’m not sure it’s even as insidious as the “3 a.m.” ad that the Clinton campaign ran to such good effect last month.

All that said, if the McCain campaign wants to shit-can some guy on their payroll who shared that video on Twitter, that’s their prerogative; any campaign that can’t keep their employees on-message is doomed to controversy—ask Amanda Marcotte, or for that matter John “Two Americas But Stuck In Third Place” Edwards.


Any views expressed in these comments are solely those of their authors; they do not reflect the views of the authors of Signifying Nothing, unless attributed to one of us.

It depends on how you define “swiftboating.” My working definition is “pointing out stuff about a Democrat’s past that he’d rather not see pointed out about him.” On that, the Kerry supporters of 2004 and the Obamapologists of 2008 can agree.

[Permalink] 2. Rick Almeida wrote @ Mon, 24 Mar 2008, 8:29 am CDT:

I don’t like the term, myself, and Sully is generally hysterical, but what I’m concerned about is that attention to Obama’s pastor vastly predominates any coverage of the truly odious views held by many of McCain’s “spiritual advisers.”

[Permalink] 3. Nolapoli wrote @ Mon, 24 Mar 2008, 3:20 pm CDT:

I don’t recall the Byrd ad being discussed over and over and over and over, ad naseaum. And the LBJ ad only played once, then received some coverage at a time when there wasn’t 24-hour news, that was the end of it. The ad become more famous/infamous in hindsight.


Preachin’ politics from the pulpit? That’s a paddlin’! (and a tax law violation)

Of course, we shouldn’t stop with this jerkwad….asshats like psycho John Hagee (viscious anti-Catholic “evangelist” who blamed Katrina on “the gays”) should be taken down as well….and just as many posts should bash McCain for his lovefest with Hagee when accepting his endorsement. There probably are; I just don’t see them.

Are there any other blogs other than Signifying Nothing? :)

(Personally, I’d pay hundreds to watch a Hagee-Wright spiked-bat Cage Match)

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