Monday, March 10, 2008

HillaBamaDramaRama: Welcome to "Democrats Gone Wild"

I call it HillaBamaDramaRama. It's the traveling circus that is the 2008 Democratic nomination contest between Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. It's been mired by charges of racism and dirty politics, and it's turning into a major point of contention among normally congenial friends. The simple fact is, this race is splitting the party in half with the sort of vehemence not seen in Democratic politics since the 1960's.

I see it it my own relationships. There was a time when verbal sparring with my good pal Brian, a staunch conservative, was the extent of my political boxing matches. These days, I find myself increasingly engaged in Democrat-on-Democrat warfare. It's incredible, but I've not experienced this sort of passion and anger since 2004's Bush/Kerry main event. At first I thought little of it. Saw it as the standard-fare early primary season squabbling--jockeying for our preferred candidates' positions-- among the liberal intelligentsia. We're the ones who watch Hardball year-round and read the NY Times' op-ed page every day. We're junkies, and we think everyone cares about and follows politics as much as we do. But then we're brought down to Earth when we see people on Jay Leno who cannot name the vice president. Yet we're the geeks who know who Howard Wolfson, Bob Shrum, Ralph Reed and John McLaughlin are, and we love to mix it up and debate the landscape. But the debating has gotten intense, and it's pitting close friends who normally share ideology against each other as if we were crossing party lines. It's actually quite a fascinating phenomenon. As such, the party couldn't be any less unified. For the most part, those who like and support Hillary are not impressed by Obama and just aren't feeling the love. And those who back Obama seem to, well, hate Clinton. And I'm not exaggerating.

The intensity is so strong that many Democrats in both camps say they'll either vote for the GOP's John McCain or sit out the election entirely if the other candidate wins the nomination. And there you have the ultimate phenomenon: the steamy intensity of HillaBamaDramaRama has resulted in a new reality show: Democrats Gone Wild. They dislike each others' candidate so much that they'd rather go Red than support the other one. Whether it's rooted in sexism, racism, fear of the unknown or fearing the known, it's getting ugly and could likely cause Democrats the election if they don't start getting their act together.

Another phenomenon of HillaBamaDramaRama is the blurring of ideological lines between Clinton and McCain. The intensity of this primary battle has caused normally intelligent, practical people to utter things like, "There's no difference between McCain and I'm just gonna protest her behavior and vote for him." Huh? Wha? Does Hillary want to prolong the war? Bomb Iran? Overturn Roe v Wade? Outlaw gay marriage? Protect the gun manufacturers? Make permanent the Bush tax cuts? Appoint conservative judges to the Supreme Court? How could anyone--any sane, rational Democrat--truly compare these two polar opposites? The only answer? HillaBamaDramaRama.... Democrats Gone Wild

On another note, we could use your help at The The Adrienne Shelly Foundation. We are a tax-exempt, non-profit organization dedicated in my wife's honor to help carry out her spirit and passion, with the goal of assisting women filmmakers. Adrienne was brutally killed in NYC on November 1, 2006. Through the Foundation, her commitment to filmmaking lives on. We've established scholarships, grants, finishing funds and living stipends at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts/Kanbar Institute of Film; Columbia University; American Film Institute; Women in Film; the Independent Feature Project; the Nantucket Film Festival; and the Sundance Institute. Your generous contribution will go a long way towards helping us achieve this very important mission. Thank you.


Anonymous said...

remember this:
"And, Ari Berman wrote about this last spring:

A host of prominent Republicans fall under Penn's purview. B-M's Washington lobbying arm, BKSH & Associates, is run by Charlie Black, a leading GOP operative who maintains close ties to the White House, including Karl Rove, and was a partner with Lee Atwater, the consultant who crafted the Willie Horton smear campaign for George H.W. Bush in 1988. In recent years Black's clients have included the likes of Iraq's Ahmad Chalabi, the darling of the neocon right in the run-up to the war; Lockheed Martin; and Occidental Petroleum. In 2005 he landed a contract with the Lincoln Group, the disgraced PR firm that covertly placed US military propaganda in Iraqi news outlets.

Black is only one cannon in B-M's Republican arsenal.

Penn works for Clinton.

Black works for McCain.

And Black works for Penn." ~ by Joe Sudbay (DC)

Caro said...

The Clinton administration was the cleanest EVER.

Anonymous obviously doesn't know that Obama has piled up a bunch of political debts to BOTH Illinois political machines.

You ain't seen corruption until you see what will happen if he manages to squeak into the White House. But I'm convinced it won't happen. Obama has given Rove a LOT of material to work with. His negatives are already high, and they'll just skyrocket if he's the nominee.

Clinton is the fighter we need to confront the right wing head on.

Carolyn Kay

Anonymous said...

I didn't start to "hate" Hillary until she said McCain would be a better candidate than Obama. Though I did dislike her choice of staff such as Penn. Especially as he has ties to the McCain's Staff.

Anonymous said...

Obama supporters are naive and don't have a clue. All along I could feel the hate for Hillary coming from them. Why? I would vote for either one of them, but his supporters are such a turn off. Where I live, white men are not ready to give up the power to a woman or black man. We are being set up. Obama has a shakey background and the smear will start as soon as he gets the nomination.

Obama supporters are a big part of the problem too. You can't be a one candidate person and expect your party to unite when needed.

I can't believe we are at this place and time. We should be coasting to a win. And if naive Obama supporters think Hillary is playing dirty, you ain't seen nothing yet. What a bunch of naive folks!

Anonymous said...

A lot of women I know are going to vote for McCain because of the way Obama supporters and the press are acting. So the above poster is right: We will not unite behind Obama.

Anonymous said...

Did the Clintons really pimp out Chelsea to Elliot Spitzer ? Ostroy, What the hell is going on with your state and why would we elect anyone from New York into the White House ?

Last time the Clintons were in the White House they stole the silverware on the way out the door.

Anonymous said...

We have a bit of bipartisan action taking place this week on the floor of the U.S. Senate. A Republican and a Democrat Senator: DeMint of South Carolina and McCaskill of Missouri, are going to offer an amendment to a bill that would require a two-thirds vote of the senate for any pork (or earmark, as they like to call it) spending to be approved. McCain will be there to cast a vote. Now Hillary and Obama say that they're both going to sponsor the amendment.

In the meantime .. let's take a peek at the presidential candidate earmark records for the 2008 budget:

Hillary Clinton: 212 earmarks totaling $266 million.

Barack Obama: 53 earmarks totaling $126 million

John McCain: 0 earmarks totaling $0.0 million.

I remember Democrats pledging to stop earmarks but now the corrupt Harry Reid is backing down from that pledge. I wonder if he just realized how pork crazy his Democrats are.

Do you care about out of control spending by our government?

If you do, the Democrats are NOT the answer. We need a Republican in the White House if we have a Democrat controlled Legislative branch.

Anonymous said...

9;57 good...... he forgets to tell you old johnny don't earmark open cash for his people,he helps write new laws that give his supporters the control of your lives,so they can milk you dry and protects them from law suits,he even says he's against torcher,but now it's ok to torcher ,just depends on who does the torcher is OK

Anonymous said...

torcher ? I can tell you are a Clinton supporter by your spelling.

Sidney Condorcet said...

Obama needs to show he's a uniter by offering Hillary the vice presidency. There's been too much rancor within our Democratic ranks. We need for the rift to be healed immediately and begin to put John McCain in our sites. We cannot give the Republicans six months to regroup. We need to begin carpet bombing the Repubs with adverts in all of the swing states asap. We need to aggressively define McCain now in order to counter the overwhelming media infatuation with him and his candidacy.

There are not many ways the Democrats can lose this general election, but one of them is to have our two candidates attacking each other through the summer whilst McCain raises money, rallies the base while remaining under the radar. Obama/Clinton 2008!

Anonymous said...

Can we all possibly grow up and stop playing childish games with the comments? I mean seriously. First of all, this is a Democratic blog, that is evident. If you don't like it, too bad. Stop reading and go elsewhere. Hiding behind "Anonymous" with your republican rhetoric that died when Bush was "appointed" to the presidency eight horrifyingly long years ago is pointless. Please shut up. As for the person talking about "out of control spending" by the Democrats: are you completely insane? You want an example of out of control spending - how does $500 Billion and growing sound to you? Oh but wait, that's not the Democrats - no, our current "president" and administration are responsible for that. Let's not forget the obvious: when the Clintons last ran our government we had a budget surplus for the first time in God knows how many years. We had gas prices that didn't choke us and require that we take out a second job just to afford it! Oh and that's right, we WEREN'T at war! We actually lived in peace and had the respect of most of the rest of the world. I am as annoyed as anyone with the Democratic candidate sparring taking place right now, but either candidate would make a fine commander-in-chief comapared to the hell we've endured under the corruption of the single WORST president in U.S. history and his inept administration. For better or worse I support Hillary and Obama. I will vote for either candidate. Not only is John McCain an arrogant self-serving bastard, he's also OLD! And I for one am sick and tired of people on the verge of a heart attack and Alzheimer's being elected to the most important position in the country. And thank you very much, but another 4-8 years of this never ending war is simply NOT an option. Enough said.

Anonymous said...

Look at the facts on our future Presidential candidates:

presidential candidate earmark records for the 2008 budget:

Hillary Clinton: 212 earmarks totaling $266 million.

Barack Obama: 53 earmarks totaling $126 million

John McCain: 0 earmarks totaling $0.0 million.

Rob (Bert),
I've been here longer than you. If you don't like it you can go somewhere else.

McCain/Powell 2008!!

Sidney Condorcet said...

Whoever thinks this election is going to (or should) be elected on the basis of earmarks is a fool. Earmarks are a total process issue. Average voters just do not care about such things, except possibly for the most absurd of earmarks like a "bridge to nowhere."

How many lobbyists on McCain's staff again?

Powell? Seriously? McCain would do best by picking a VP that isn't as closely tied to the Iraq debacle as Saint John is. That nixes all the right's favs: Powell, Condi, Satan (err, I meant Cheney).

Anonymous said...

Of course Democrats don't care about out-of-control earmarks - they don't pay any taxes.

Democrats are all about taking money from successful people and buying votes from those who have no skills and are forced to join unions.

Sidney Condorcet said...

Can you represent me at my next hearing before the IRS, Bert? Maybe you can argue why I don't have to pay any taxes because I'm a Democrat.

Oversimplify much?

Anonymous said...

Clinton's connection to Penn is just an indication of fundamental differences in how the campaigns are run. This should be an indication on how they would run and staff their administrations.
The Democratic party under Dean has chosen a 50 states strategy choosing to fund offices and staff in all 50 states. This has brought new Democrats in record numbers into the party, especially in traditionally 'red' states.
Obama has embraced that strategy by building on Dean's foundation and establishing a 50 state presence with paid staff in every state; red states, blue states, states with large and small numbers of delegates incorporating legions of volenteers. This is a bottom up democratic (small 'd') organization.
Contrast that to the Clinton campaign's top down organization. Most of the organization is top heavy with huge expenditures for DC insider strategists like Penn. Along with that, there has been a small expenditure on state organizations, concentrating on states with large numbers of delegates and/or prospective swing states.
These strategies can be extrapolated to how their prospective administrations will be staffed and run. I guess it is a matter of whether you want DC insiders protecting their entrenched interests or a more broad based pool of talent of um... outsiders, who's interests reflect more of the general populace across the country.

Ernie and Bert... while it may be true for this election year McCain claims no earmarks, he is lying when he says on Fox news"[...}I’m proud to tell you, Chris, in 24 years as a member of Congress, I have never asked for nor received a single earmark or pork barrel project for my state and I guarantee you I’ll veto those bills. I’ll ask for the line item veto and I’ll veto them and I’ll make the authors of them famous."
McCain worked together in 2006 with "Jon Kyl (R) to funnel $10 million toward the University of Arizona for an academic center named after the late Supreme Court Justice William Rehnquist.[...] The National Taxpayers Union, another traditional McCain ally, questioned why the senator was making federal taxpayers foot the bill for the center." ~ Think Progress
That was an earmark by his own standard.
"In 2003, McCain also slipped $14.3 million into a defense appropriations bill to
create a buffer zone around Luke Air Force Base in Arizona." ~ Think Progress
Another earmark.
In 1992 McCain asked for and got $5 million to be directed to a wastewater project in Arizona. This measure failed and McCain lobbied the EPA and President Bush I to get it done. ~ Washington Post
McCain's standard for identifying pork (earmarks):A measure needs to be requested by the President and approved by a committee to not be pork.

The largest "pork" expenditure or boondoggle that is looting our treasury IMO has been the no bid contracts, which have been renewed again and again for corporations who have provenly defrauded the country. We are not talking about millions or even hundreds of millions, these are billions of dollars.

Caro said...

We already know how a Clinton administration would be run.

Thank God THAT eight years of peace and prosperity was replace by eight years of war and theft.

If Obama is the Democratic nominee, we will be assured of at least another four years of war and theft, a McCain continuation of the Bush administration.

Carolyn Kay

Anonymous said...

Of course I'm oversimplifying regarding taxes, it's a freaking blog.

Eight years of peace and prosperity? Simplify much?? ;-) (sorry Sid, I couldn't help it)

- January 21, 1993 - Shortly after his inauguration, President Clinton said the United States would continue the Bush policy on Iraq

- February 26, 1993 - World Trade Center Bombed, killing 6 and injuring over 1000 people (Al Qaeda)

- May 24, 1993 – Iraq - In a status report on Iraq, President Clinton said that on April 9 and April 18 U.S. warplanes had bombed or fired missiles at Iraqi anti-aircraft sites which had tracked U.S. aricraft.

- June 19, 1993 – President Clinton said a U.S. aircraft had fired a missile at an Iraqi anti-aircraft site displaying hostile intent.

- June 26, 1993 – Iraq - President Clinton reported that U.S. naval forces had launched missiles against the Iraqi Intelligence Service's headquarters in Baghdad

- August 19, 1993 - U.S. planes bombed an Iraqi missile battery.

- October 3, 1993 - 18 American soldiers killed in Somolia. (Black Hawk Down)

- January 1995 – Ramzi Ahmed Yousef and his associates (Al Qaeda) accidentally blow up their Manilla apartment while mixing chemicals for a plan to blow up eleven or twelve U.S. commercial aircraft in one spectacular day of terrorist rage.

- April 19, 1995 - Oklahoma City Federal Building Bombed, killing 168 and injuring many more.

- November 13, 1995 - A bomb was set off in a van parked in front of an American-run military training center in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh, killing five Americans and two Indians.

- March 8, 1996 – Sudan’s Minister of State for Defense, Elfatih Erwa met with the CIA officer (3/3/1996) and offered more than information. He offered to arrest and turn over bin Laden himself. Two years earlier, the Sudan had turned over the infamous terrorist, Carlos the Jackal to the French. He now sits in a French prison. Sudan wanted to repeat that scenario with bin Laden in the starring role. Bill Clinton refuses to take OBL because “he had not committed any crimes against the United States”

- June 25, 1996 - Khobar Towers Barracks are bombed in Saudi Arabia, killing 19 American Soldiers.

- July 17, 1996 - TWA Flight 800 terror attack covered up by Clinton/Gore

- February 23, 1998 - Osama Bin Laden holds a press conference to declare war against the United States

- August 7, 1998 - Osama Bin Laden operatives organize simultaneous bombings of the US Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, killing 200 people, including 12 Americans

- October 31, 1998 – President Clinton signed into law the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998.

- March 24, 1999 – NATO starts heavily bombing Yugoslavia in the Kosovo War WITHOUT UN APPROVAL

- October 12, 2000 - Osama bin Laden operatives kill 17 and wounding 39 US Sailors in the bombing of the USS Cole.

Sidney Condorcet said...


Let's hope you're baseless claim that an Obama administration would lead to "at least another four years of war and theft" proves to be as myopic as I think it is. Barring a revelation of Spitzer-like proportions, Senator Barack Obama will be the Democratic Party's nominee for the presidency this year. So it's time for Clinton-backers to start supporting Obama, rather than continuing to tear him down and make him an easier mark for the Republicans.

Anonymous said...

Imagine you have a bees nest in your backyard. Its growing and growing, what do you do ?

A logical person would destroy that bees nest at the time of his/her choosing. Bill Clinton let that bees nest grow unfettered during his 'eight years of peace and prosperity'.

We are where we are today because of the Clinton years.

The bipartisan 9/11 Commission Report documents that the Clinton administration blocked the CIA from killing/capturing OBL at least 3 times.

Clinton's 'eight years of peace and prosperity' was a bubble and it is a fact that George W. Bush inherited a recession.

Anonymous said...

best way to shut bert and ernie up is to remind them,little george has had 7 going on eight years to get osama and spent half a trillion dollars,enough to pay everyones medical insurance for the next 50 years and everytime. clinton went to go after osama,right wingers like bert and ernie called it wagging the dog after the cole and said if clinton took action before the election that year,it was so al gore would be president,the proof who was responsible for the cole bombing came in late dec. 2000,bush told clinton he would take care of it when he took office,the problem is ,is dick chaney and his oil company wanted to put a pipe line across afghanistan,and you know how repuks are profit before anything else

Anonymous said...

The only time Clinton "went after osama" was:

August 17, 1998 - Bill Clinton admits he lied under oath regarding an "inappropriate relationship" with former White House Intern, Monica Lewinsky

August 20, 1998 - Bill Clinton orders 13 cruise missile strikes on a Sudanese Aspirin Factory, the first significant retaliation for terrorism since President Reagan sent warplanes against Libya in response to the April 5, 1986 Berlin Disco Bombing. Turns out, the owner of the Aspirin Factory retained Legal Services from Vernon Jordan's law firm. Vernon Jordan was a long-time friend of the dishonorable Bill Clinton. This retaliation was at an act that some terrorism experts believe fueled terrorists' conviction that the United States was an ineffectual giant that relied on low-risk high technology

Anonymous said...

The most important thing that should come out of this election is an energized national Democratic Party that is something far more than what it has been since 1992 - i.e., a vehicle for the Clintons.

These people are some of the most despicable people who ever threw their hats in a political ring.

They care little about anything other than themselves.

Case in point - how the heck does Hillary get the NERVE to say that Obama is unqualified to be President in the middle of the election, especially with him in the lead? What happens if he wins the nomination and McCain simply feeds the Clinton words back to him? And if she really thinks he is unfit, where does she come off touting him as Veep - a heartbeat away from the seat he's not qualified for?

That is just one example of the say anything, do anything ways of the Clintons. If she truly believes Obama is unfit, then why would she dare consider him as Veep? And if she does consider him fit, then why say something she doesn't believe?

At the end of the day, it's all about the accumulation and maintenence of personal power for their own selfish benefit.

The triangulation that Bill Clinton did - selling out his and our principles on gays in the military, trade and welfare "reform" was all about his own personal survival.

The criminals and murky types who follow them financially - the Norman Hsu's, Charlie Trie's of the world - shout out from the mountaintop the lengths these people would go for money. How many Clinton contributors fled the country when questions arose - and without a single request of a Clinton for them to come back to account honestly for the issues involved?

The pardons that were sold, the gift registry they signed up for on their way out of the White House even though they knew they'd be rolling in dough from speeches and "friendly" investment opportunities, the $700,000 stock gifts in companies controlled by Communist China for a single speech, the refusal to disclose financial info\rmation regarding their foundation and library, their tax returns, the furniture and furnishings that they tried to steal on their way out of the White House - all of this dirty, stinky, smelly stuff should prove to any thinking Democrat that we would be better off once and for all if we were done with them.

If you ask me, the biggest push behind Obama is not so much Obama qua Obama, but the fact that Democrats once and for all have an opportunity to vote against the filthy Clintons without having to vote for a Republican.

Sidney Condorcet said...

Well said, 4:59pm.

Anonymous said...

well said, sidney.

Anonymous said...

4:49 Hillary has said Obama hasn't enough experiece and only she will be ready on day one. She didn't say he couldn't learn and get more experience and how better than being her vice president. It is a four year job, don't you know? He'd have both her and Bill to teach him.
And as for Bill's selling out his prinicples it didn't happen. He BROUGHT THE TWO SIDES TOGETHER SO THEY COULD REACH A COMPROMISE> YOU, KNOW, LIKE OBAMA PROMISES TO DO. Do you really think if he were president he could give his winning smile and one of his speeches and the Republicans would all vote like Democrats? With Obama we'll either see a stalemate and nothing happening, but, after his campaign we'll probably see that he's one more Democrat who CAVES> I'm sick of them. I'd settle for the condition of my circumstances under Bill Clinton despite his "warts." And, I'm sure HIllary can deliver the same peace, prosperity and general satisfaction.

Caro said...

Sidney Condorcet,

If you think the deprivation, death, and destruction of the last seven years is in any way comparable to the eight years of the Clinton administration, then all sanity has been lost.

Honestly, some of you commenters remind me of the Bushbots from 2000.


If you're right that Obama will be the Democratic nominee, then we are assured of another four years of Bushism. There's no way a skinny kid with a microscopic record is going to beat John McCain, who will be supported by every function of government trying to help keep George Bush's ass out of prison.

Carolyn Kay