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Obama Rats Out His Racist Granny
Just saw this online in Taranto's column in the WSJ, but I actually thought the same thing Taranto did when I read Obama's speech about Wright this morning in the print edition of the LA Times. But, first, an excerpt from Obama's speech:

I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother -- a woman who helped raise me, a woman who sacrificed again and again for me, a woman who loves me as much as she loves anything in this world, but a woman who once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street, and who on more than one occasion has uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes that made me cringe.

And my thoughts on this: Private people will say things privately that they would never say publicly. Like Obama's granny, who he threw under the wheels of the campaign bus as a defense for his failing to run in disgust from Wright.

Taranto, likewise, writes:

Our first thought was that it was pretty low of Obama to exploit his (still living) grandmother in this way. Is it really necessary for the whole world to know about her private expressions of prejudice? Doesn't simple decency dictate that a public figure treat embarrassing facts about loved ones with discretion?

Obama was trying to accomplish something very specific by dragging his "white grandmother" into this political mess. He was trying to diminish Wright's hateful theology by implying that it too is a private matter.

Yeah? Well, it's not. The way I see it, you are who you associate with. What you can stomach. Or, at least, it says something about who you are.

And in Taranto's words, it's this:

So here we have, on the one hand, an old white woman who would be completely ordinary and anonymous but for her grandson's astonishing political success, and who harbors some regrettable prejudices; and, on the other, a leader in the black community who uses his pulpit to propagate an ideology of hate.

Obama said this morning, "I have asserted a firm conviction--a conviction rooted in my faith in God and my faith in the American people--that working together we can move beyond some of our old racial wounds, and that in fact we have no choice if we are to continue on the path of a more perfect union."

But if he cannot speak out unequivocally against the public, organized bigotry of his spiritual mentor, how can he possibly live up to this promise?

Posted by aalkon at March 20, 2008 11:08 AM

Comments

Kaus has been picking a few nits, too. It's starting to look like Obama's sensitivities aren't really as golden as they seemed to be just a few weeks ago.

BTW, some the "more perfect unions" in my life aren't the closest ones! But props to the man... That's a wickedly, wickedly clever locution.

Posted by: Crid at March 20, 2008 1:18 AM

I knew this was eventually going to come back and bite him in the ass and said that on this blog a few months back. Obama has a history of associating with anti-American groups, marxists, black panthers and the like. He is a closet black radical. He wants reparations, more affirmative action, more social programs, (read transfer of wealth). When I heard him denying that he knew anything about these hate speeches by his pastor, I thought, you damned liar, you mention in your own fucking book that you sought out and deliberately joined this mans church because you liked what he preached, and have also endorsed some other radical black pastors who spew that same hatred. For him to stand up in front of the nation and tell us that his pastors hatred and anger is justified because America is a fucked up country and racism still exists takes brass nuts the size of the moon. His pastor is a black bigot. His church is not any real kind of a christian church because they don't preach god, they preach hate. There are even a lot of muslims in the congregation by the churchs own admission. Why, because they are not praising jesus, which is what a christian church does, they are preaching hatred of American, and that folds in with islam very nicely. Otherwise, no muslim would be caught dead in a christian church, it's actually a very serious offense to listen to or endorse the teachings of christianity. So you know the church is full of shit. I'm betting that pastor Wright is living very high on the hog selling this bullshit.

When I grew up in Detroit, my grandmother used to drag us around to many black churches when we were little kids, and I NEVER heard anything like that out of those people. They were actually some of the nicest people I've ever met. Of course, that was in the early sixties. I don't know what if anything has changed. Funny how since the Civil Rights act, the racism pimps have been trying harder than ever to keep hate alive.

Posted by: Bikerken at March 20, 2008 1:20 AM

Heh. Ann Coulter is saying much the same thing, in "Throw Grandma Under The Bus", now on her site.

Posted by: Radwaste at March 20, 2008 2:09 AM

What Obama said about his grandmother may not have been entirely accurate. In response to that bit about his grandmother's supposed fear of black males who passed her on the street, journalist
Steve Sailer wrote:

Well, no, according to Obama's 1995 book, it is not at all true that she "once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street." Instead, she once confessed her fear of one aggressive black beggar who didn't pass by her but instead confronted her, demanded money, and then gave her -- an intelligent, level-headed woman who had worked her way up to a mid-level corporate management position -- good reason to believe he would have violently mugged her if her bus hadn't pulled up.

If this was some doofus politician like Bush or Biden who retold the story in a misleading fashion, you might view it as just their usual struggle with using the English language to get across what they really kind of, sort of mean. But Obama is so superb with words that it's perfectly reasonable to hold him accountable for choosing to slander his own living grandmother for his political advantage.

Posted by: Jamie B. at March 20, 2008 5:17 AM

Bikerken: Did he really discuss reparations? That is just so extreme that it's tough to believe a mainstream guy has gotten this far feeling that way.

But then again, we've all, collectively, been duped at some point in some fashion. I'd be interested in your sources, Ken! (Or are you just going on a little rampage? Which is totally cool, just wanna know.)

Posted by: Gretchen Author Profile Page at March 20, 2008 5:38 AM

I previously thought it was fishy that he said his sister came off a plane from Africa instead of off a Greyhound and everybody thought I was silly.

http://www.advicegoddess.com/archives/2008/03/obama_integrity.html

Posted by: Amy Alkon Author Profile Page at March 20, 2008 5:41 AM

Well, isn't this a kick in the crotch for Obamalama's campaign, and a shot in the arm for Shrillary's. We're freakin' doomed, I tell you, doomed!

On another note, Amy said: Private people will say things privately that they would never say publicly.

Exactly true. BUT remember what happened not too long ago, with Dog the Bounty Hunter and one of his sons, who recorded a PRIVATE phone conversation in which Dog used the 'n' word and the son sold the conversation to some rag-mag and it was a big damn bru-ha-ha and he (Dog)ended up having to apologize and all that shit?? That one example proves that you can't say shit privately either anymore. So tell Crid I love him and I'll meet him at that place in San Fran next Tuesday. o_O

Posted by: Flynne at March 20, 2008 6:43 AM

I seem to recall Jesse Jackson some years back saying, "I feel ashamed when someone is walking behind me, and feel relief that the person is white."

Frankly I wouldn't be all that surprised to find any grandparent of someone Obama's age, who had used or had overt or covert racist words.

People are products of their time that remain with us long after their time is done.

It is pretty sleazy for him to air his grandmother's dirty laundry that way, probably make family gatherings...a little awkward for a few years.

Posted by: Robert H. Butler at March 20, 2008 6:45 AM

Grandmother or not, anyone who has read the FBI stats knows that while blacks represent 12% of America's population, 56% of our murderers are black.

But the ratio is actually much worse than that. Men are much more likely to murder than women, and the young likelier than the old, so actually much less than 6% of the population commits 56% of the murders in the US.

No need to feel guilty about your fear, Reverend Jackson. It's just enlightened self-interest that sets off your personal zone alarm.

Posted by: Gog_Magog_Carpet_Reclaimers at March 20, 2008 7:53 AM

Without a doubt, there is no one here that is without prejudice... and I have to say my Granny is one hell of a racist redneck. When I was dating a black woman, Grandma would still say racist comments - it is ingrained in her like a conditioned response (not excusing the behavior).

Reading a few links and many remarks online, it seems that it is as much about "how can you talk about your grandmother (elders) that way!?!" than racism. Old people and their old beliefs should not be held in any higher regard.

Hasn't everyone had a connection with a friend that wouldn't necessarily be deemed appropriate in the public eye?

I will still vote for him, I am prejudice and want to see what a black man can do for America, unfortunately he believes in a god, but we all have our faults.

Posted by: kbling at March 20, 2008 8:14 AM

what this points up to me about Obama, and also his wife... is they don't seem to realize the difference between an inner dialog, and an outer one... if he hasn't picked any handlers to tell him that, then he is stupid. If you say the wrong thing, you WILL get savaged for it somewhere.

On the other hand, regardless his friendship with his pastor, he should have left that congregation right after he got elected to office. That congregation prolly helped him, but the minute he considered going national? The pastor is a liability. How can someone who appears so savvy, not know that?

Posted by: SwissArmyD at March 20, 2008 8:17 AM

I think Obama is making a really good point in his speech and with this comment about his grandmother, which I don't see as "throwing her under the bus" at all. (way to pick up on the standard spin there Amy, how's the cool aid?)

He was making the point that sometimes people you love say things you don't agree with and that you still love them. So what if his grandma has said some racist stuff? Why is admitting that throwing her under the bus? Who HASN"T said some racist stuff in their lives? Anyone who says they haven't is LYING.

Which brings me to the second point, I really felt that he was trying to bring race and racism into an open dialog, which this country desperately needs. Acknowledging that people of every color have racial prejudices is not throwing them under the bus, it is the first step to fixing the problem.

If you read or watch his speech and all you take away from it is that he was mean to his grandma, then, frankly, I'm sad for you.

I think these paragraphs are what deserve the most attention:

For we have a choice in this country. We can accept a politics that breeds division, and conflict, and cynicism. We can tackle race only as spectacle - as we did in the OJ trial - or in the wake of tragedy, as we did in the aftermath of Katrina - or as fodder for the nightly news. We can play Reverend Wright's sermons on every channel, every day and talk about them from now until the election, and make the only question in this campaign whether or not the American people think that I somehow believe or sympathize with his most offensive words. We can pounce on some gaffe by a Hillary supporter as evidence that she's playing the race card, or we can speculate on whether white men will all flock to John McCain in the general election regardless of his policies.
We can do that.
But if we do, I can tell you that in the next election, we'll be talking about some other distraction. And then another one. And then another one. And nothing will change.

But hey, distractions have worked so well for us in the last two elections. We might as well stick with it right?

Posted by: Shinobi at March 20, 2008 8:37 AM

These views about railroading his grandma are not likely to hit mainstream America in a way that matters. First of all, who cares that his grandma said racist shit. We knew that already. Secondly, I doubt she even cares. I live in the small town of Plains, Ga. where Jimmy Carter lives. When he was elected, everyone was on his bandwagon no. matter. what. We still have plays and festivals every year honoring that time. Everyone here is still madly in love with everything he does.

And about his pastor, he did enough by publically saying he disagrees with his thinking. Mainstream America is going to take it as a sign of loyalty and honesty. They won't dig for facts. This is what I predict anyway.

But even if you think he is a monster for outting his granny, who else are you gonna vote for and why? I like to make my vote count by choosing someone who actually has a chance making it in office.

Posted by: kg at March 20, 2008 8:47 AM

Gretchen, I have been watching Obama for years now, not just the last few months like most people. When he first was elected to congress and there was a big revival of the reparations idea, he was for it, but I couldn't find you any references on that. What he does is hint to blacks that he is for them by using parsed language. He is very Clinton like that way. In his speech on tuesday, he said this about the constitution:
"The document they produced was eventually signed but ultimately unfinished. It was stained by this nation’s original sin of slavery, a question that divided the colonies and brought the convention to a stalemate until the founders chose to allow the slave trade to continue for at least twenty more years, and to leave any final resolution to future generations."
Now you can disagree with me if you want, but when he infers we need a "final resolution" to Americans "original sin" he is hinting about reparations for slavery.

Posted by: Bikerken at March 20, 2008 8:53 AM

I have (well, had - they're mostly dead) racist relatives myself. Not racist in the sense that they shamefully confessed fear of black men walking on the street (a la Jesse Jackson) - racist in the sense that they used the nastiest of racist epithets. I tried asking them to stop - it didn't work. They'd been born in the Deep South around the turn of the century. They weren't going to change. I didn't stop saying things to them, but after a while I managed to appreciate that at least they didn't say these things to the people in question.

But you know - those were my relatives. We shared DNA. They (especially my grandparents) had done many things for me and would have thrown themselves in front of a train to save me without a moment's hesitation. I had to find a way to accept them because, like it or not, they were tied to me.

Obama CHOSE to associate with Wright. CHOSE. He deliberately formed ties with the guy and called on Wright to baptize his two daughters. There are countless black preachers in Illinois alone - Obama could have easily found another one. Wright didn't raise Obama. Wright doesn't appear to have modified his views for Obama. Something about Wright appealed to Obama more than all of the other things that other black pastors did. That's NOT the same thing as putting up with the racist views of a woman who helped raise him.

And about his pastor, he did enough by publically saying he disagrees with his thinking. Mainstream America is going to take it as a sign of loyalty and honesty. They won't dig for facts. This is what I predict anyway.

Agreed. I still think that Hillary's going to find a way to pull out the nomination, though.

Posted by: marion Author Profile Page at March 20, 2008 9:19 AM

Now you can disagree with me if you want, but when he infers we need a "final resolution" to Americans "original sin" he is hinting about reparations for slavery.

I'll take disagree FTW! My super-secret decoder ring may not have the coded messages to darkies setting, so I may be wrong. But to me, it seemed like he merely acknowledging the fact (and I'm guessing you'd be hard pressed find anyone who knows any history to disagree) that slavery was a fucked up deal from the get-go and the framers of the constitution knew it, but they had to kick the can down the road to get slave states to sign on and form the union. Some of what we're dealing with today in terms of race is because of that. What's controversial here?

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 9:25 AM

Obama CHOSE to associate with Wright.

True, but my guess is that he chose to associate with Wright because there was no way a half-white Harvard Law grad and outsider was ever going to succeed as a community organizer on the Chicago's south side without having Wright (or someone similar) on his side. There's no doubt he should have anticipated this problem and done something to dissociate himself sooner, though.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 9:34 AM

Now you can disagree with me if you want, but when he infers we need a "final resolution" to Americans "original sin" he is hinting about reparations for slavery.

I'm not disagreeing with you Bikerken, but I have a question: Would all of those who "descended from the black slaves" want to go back to Africa, or would they have preferred to have lived there all their lives? I think I'd get a resounding "Hell, NO!" on that one. Think about it, the lifestyle they live over here, in their government paid for housing, with their welfare checks, and their bling, and their gangsta lives, is infinitely better than they would have it over there. And never mind that sector, what about the black people who have actually bettered their lives and sent their kids to college and have taken some personal responsibility for their lives? They don't need reparations, do they? How could it be justified? Call me naive, but I would think they would be insulted. Even the ones who live in government housing, as shitty as it is, aren't living in mud huts, sleeping on mats on the floor, and suffering from myriad diseases, are they? (And don't get me wrong, I know it's not that bad everywhere in Africa, but it is like that in more places than not. I have 2 colleagues at work that have been there recently, and they assured me that conditions are not as good as they could be for the vast majority.) Methinks they cry too loudly in ignorance of what they could be living like. Where else would they have the myriad opportunities they do to snub their noses at?

Posted by: Flynne at March 20, 2008 9:35 AM

People always complain that politicians will do anything for a vote. They will take under their wing any crazy person and money from any source that can help them win. So then there's Obama, who instead of simply distancing himself from Wright (which would have been politically expedient), takes the mature route and says Pastor Wright was wrong on these issues. He explains why he believes his Pastor was wrong and why he probably made those mistakes. All without doing what was most politically expedient and what will ultimately cost him votes.

Compare this with John "Maverick" McCain, who has taken to SHARING A STAGE John Hagee and enjoying the endorsements of Pat Robertson and Jerry Fallwell after previously calling them "agents of intolerance." These are religious leaders who who believe that the U.S. provoked the 9/11 attacks because God wants to punish us for ensuring the rights of gays and liberals. People who have said that New Orleans was right to punished for its sins. And people who have suggested the HANGING of ACLU members. All while McCain has yet to make a peep about how he disagrees with absurd and hateful things HIS religious supporters have said.

And by the way Obama was using his grandmother as a rhetorical counterpoint to his pastor to make the point that there are people both black and white who have been kind to him and helped guide him who have said hurtful and racist things that he did not agree with. And that we should look at who these people are, why they believe and say these thing they do, so that we can figure out how move past it.

Posted by: flighty at March 20, 2008 9:46 AM

I think we are missing the irony of the situation: a black man with a white grandmother is going to a church and is closely associated with a man that preaches about the advancement of and preservation of the black race at the exclusion of others... no wonder he threw grandmom under the bus - she's white

Posted by: dena at March 20, 2008 9:48 AM

I like the Onion:Black Guy Asks Nation for Change

I like the Onion:Black Guy Asks Nation for Change

One final thing:
Taranto's a liar when when he writes:
But if he cannot speak out unequivocally against the public, organized bigotry of his spiritual mentor, how can he possibly live up to this promise?

From the speech:

I have already condemned, in unequivocal terms, the statements of Reverend Wright that have caused such controversy. For some, nagging questions remain. Did I know him to be an occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy? Of course. Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes. Did I strongly disagree with many of his political views? Absolutely – just as I’m sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed.

But the remarks that have caused this recent firestorm weren’t simply controversial. They weren’t simply a religious leader’s effort to speak out against perceived injustice. Instead, they expressed a profoundly distorted view of this country – a view that sees white racism as endemic, and that elevates what is wrong with America above all that we know is right with America; a view that sees the conflicts in the Middle East as rooted primarily in the actions of stalwart allies like Israel, instead of emanating from the perverse and hateful ideologies of radical Islam.

When reading Taranto's columns, it's helpful to keep in mind that his job is anti-Democrat attack dog.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 9:49 AM

Think about it, the lifestyle they live over here, in their government paid for housing, with their welfare checks, and their bling, and their gangsta lives...

Fucking wow.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 9:51 AM

Too bad Obama's mother wasn't a little more afraid of black guys. She seems to have the same taste in men as Bill Clinton's late mother: lousy.

Posted by: Kate at March 20, 2008 9:54 AM

I'm not arguing that slavery was wrong Justin, what I'm saying is that it is HISTORY! How can we ever put anything behind us unless we put it behind us. I'm sick and tired of hearing these pandering pimps of prejudice try to tell today's Americans that there is still racism in the world so we should not ever get beyond what happened two hundred years ago. They are not part of the cure, they are the problem. If, as Obama says, we had a 'national discussion' of racism, exactly how should that conversation proceed? Here would be some of the summary points:
Yes, America has had an imperfect history.
Yes, there was slavery.
Yes, slavery ended and civil rights became a reality.
Now what?

I grew up in South Detroit in the sixties and remember the '67 riots very well. I remember the smell of fire for days, National Guard troops at the A&P, my relatives sitting around the house with loaded guns and I saw my teenage babysitter killed with a brick to his head right in our front yard. I went to school with black kids and there was a lot of racial divide back then, but some people just don't ever want to let it go. I did. I don't accept this white guilt shit that so many liberals buy into and race baiters promote.

I tell you whats controversial here Justin, when Baracks pastors 'preachings' were exposed on TV for being racists hatred, anti-semitic, inflamatory, rants against America and just about all people on earth except africans, Obama denied knowing anything about it. Then when he was compelled to make a statement about it, he uses the, "it's a black thing" excuse. I'm sorry, that is no excuse. To stand there and say that it's America's racist past that is to blame for my pastors hatred of America, is a freakin big pile of HORSESHIT! Obama doesn't want to have a conversation about race, he stirred up an arguement about race to cover for his attachment to a bigoted mentor.

If slavery was REALLY what pisses the reverend wrong off, then the country who he would have to be pissed off at is......AFRICA! Where it is still practiced entusiastically to this very day. But does he rail at Africa? no, he hates the US where slavery ended over a hundred years ago! Just a little bit of inconsistancy there, ya think?

Posted by: Bikerken at March 20, 2008 10:01 AM

Fucking wow.

I'm just callin it what it is, I see it every day. I also see black people who are making their way, and taking personal responsibility for themselves. I'm not prejudiced against the race as a whole, just the ones who try to turn their prejudice against white people for no good reason other than the fact they are white. MY ancestors never owned slaves, they were slaves, well, indentured servants. But they were not directly responsible for bringing slaves to this country and neither were yours. So these people need to stop with the attitude and the hate-mongering and just start taking personal responsibility for their lives. Why is this so difficult for people to understand??

Posted by: Flynne at March 20, 2008 10:02 AM

"he is hinting about reparations for slavery." - Bikerken

That's some heavy shit. Everyone has a bloody history and we're all guilty of something. But to think that anyone in this country owes reparations to anyone else is (obviously) seriously misguided, extremist and unreasonable (to put it veryyy lightly).

Just to provoke you: do you actually think he'll get very far as president if he tries to implement reparations?

Posted by: Gretchen Author Profile Page at March 20, 2008 10:09 AM

If slavery was REALLY what pisses the reverend wrong off

I'm guessing what pissed him off was growing up in a country which he could serve as a Marine, and in whose name he could possibly be killed, yet be called a nigger, and told he couldn't go places because he was black. Yeah, that's probably it. Might make me mad, too. That experience - segregation and the rest shaped his perspective on the world and it clearly drives his preaching style. He's wrong about things, but it's not beyond understanding what created his pathology. That the speech started with slavery was to provide historical context.

Obama's rhetoric in general, and this speech in particular, has always struck me as an attempt to move beyond old ways of approaching race in this country:

This is where we are right now. It’s a racial stalemate we’ve been stuck in for years. Contrary to the claims of some of my critics, black and white, I have never been so naïve as to believe that we can get beyond our racial divisions in a single election cycle, or with a single candidacy – particularly a candidacy as imperfect as my own.
But I have asserted a firm conviction – a conviction rooted in my faith in God and my faith in the American people – that working together we can move beyond some of our old racial wounds, and that in fact we have no choice is we are to continue on the path of a more perfect union.

You clearly feel differently, which is your prerogative.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 10:18 AM

I'm just callin it what it is, I see it every day.

I've heard it before - tons. I grew up hearing "I'm not prejudiced against black people, just niggers."

You're not wrong about the some of the very real and pervasive values problems that hold the black community back in the U.S., though.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 10:27 AM

One unappealing thing to come out of all of this: President McCain.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 10:30 AM

I've heard it before - tons. I grew up hearing "I'm not prejudiced against black people, just niggers."

I've said this, while reiterating that I also know some white niggers. It's really not the race as a whole that I have a problem with, it's the stupidity of a lot of humans I encounter that I have a problem with. The word "nigger", as defined in the dictionary (I forget which one, I've got, like, 3 of them) is "a stupid person." Last time I checked, stupidity isn't a problem of color.

Posted by: Flynne at March 20, 2008 10:36 AM

Gretchen, I don't think reparations could ever have a chance in hell of succeeding purely because of technicalities. But that doesn't mean that there aren't people stupid enough to try it. It would run into the same problems that they are figuring out with trying to cover peoples mortgage failures. I don't ever think it could get past the SCOTUS either. First of all, how could you ever figure out who they should go to? Would that be anyone with one drop of slave blood? because that would probably be most people in the United States. Or would you just pay people based on the color of their skin? Does that sound possible? The people who push this idiotic idea are essentially just perpetuating the "you are owed something" mentality and dangling a "I can get it for you" on top of it. The people who buy into it aren't too damned smart.

Flynne, I've been to Africa a few times. I could never get over how the oldest civilization in the world is the least civilized in the world. It is a pure shithole and I didn't go to the worst of it. I landed in Mombasa Kenya, ironically, I was just going through those old pictures last night and scanning them into my computer. I've been taking old photos and digitally touching them up and saving them to discs. Anyway, the thing that surprised me was the average Africans view of African Americans. They didn't like them. I was a bit surprised and I'm not going into why, but I'll just say this, African Americans and Africans have virtualy nothing in common. The black friends I went on liberty with got a really cold reception from the Africans we met. It was wierd.

Posted by: Bikerken at March 20, 2008 10:42 AM

Bikerken, that is exactly what both scientists I work with said, as well! They had gone there for a conference in Johannesburg, and they were also able to get some safari time, and they both made the same observation about African Americans being given the cold shoulder from the African people who worked at the conference, and that led one of the safaris. They, too, described it as "weird."

Posted by: Flynne at March 20, 2008 10:51 AM

Apparently Obama's grandmother is "just a typical white person".

You know the kind. They just hate automatically.

You know?

http://michellemalkin.com/2008/03/20/obama-trashing-his-grandmother-again/

Posted by: Snoop Diggity-DANG-Dawg at March 20, 2008 10:52 AM

I'll just say this Flynne, the one thing I took away from my Africa experience was the lesson that skin color doesn't mean everything, if not much at all. Here were two peoples of the same race who had no other common ground at all, if not even a separation enhanced by their same race, if you can wrap you head around that.

Posted by: Bikerken at March 20, 2008 11:08 AM

> One unappealing thing to come
> out of all of this: President
> McCain.

Even then, I'll blame the Democrats again. There's just no need for Obama to say things this stupid. If he doesn't have the grace to discuss race productively --and apparently he doesn't-- he should just hush up and ride the wave.

Even if Hillary gets a 25-point win in Pennsylvania, he's still likely to win.

Posted by: Crid at March 20, 2008 11:47 AM

Just to clear something up about "Africans" vs. "African Americans"

I think "Africans" (which is a dumb term anyway seeing as there 54 different countries in Africa, hundreds of languages, and a myriad of races) tend to have a problem with the term "African American" because they rightly see that most "African American" have almost know knowledge of anything going on in any of the African countries.

I've always thought the term "African American" was a bit disingenuous. I had white teachers born and raised in South Africa, who taught and lived in America. They were leading a tour of black American women in South Africa in a small village, when a local asked why the black women called themselves "African Americans?" The local women, rightly believed my white teachers should be the ones called African Americans.

That said, the South Africans and Ghanaians I've known had a problem with the term, not the black americans themselves.

I think it would be the same if white people called themselves European Americans. Most Europeans would be so keen on calling white Americans "European." I've also heard the same from Chinese American friends who go to China. The actual Chinese don't like the term because they think, you're not Chinese, you're American.

Posted by: flighty at March 20, 2008 12:02 PM

"There's just no need for Obama to say things this stupid. If he doesn't have the grace to discuss race productively --and apparently he doesn't-- he should just hush up and ride the wave"

Crid - did you read the whole speech? Or just read reactions to it? Find me a more a nuanced speech about race from a major politician in the past 20 years and I'll gladly endorse whoever you tell me to endorse.

Posted by: flighty at March 20, 2008 12:05 PM

> Crid - did you read the
> whole speech?

Nope! "Nuanced speech about race" is not something I ever needed from "a major politician"... He chose to start mouthing off without any encouragement from me. (I can't imagine why you'd be in the market for that kind of thing. Is there something you want us to know?)

I never asked anyone to play pro baseball, either. But when they take steroids and bungle their taxes, I'm happy to sprinkle a little opprobrium.

Posted by: Crid at March 20, 2008 12:14 PM

Has anyone caught the irony of Obama--NOT descended from anyone forced into the US in chains on a slave ship--endorsing reparations?

Posted by: Kate at March 20, 2008 12:18 PM

flighty - everything Obama says can be safely disregarded for one reason, and one reason alone:

He is a socialist. Maybe even a Trotskyite.

That he subscribes to the political and economic belief system that is responsible for more human death and misery than all other belief systems combined tells me that he is, at best, a marginal thinker.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 12:18 PM

"He is a socialist. Maybe even a Trotskyite."

It's another damn vast-Wright-wing-conspiracy!

Posted by: Snoop Diggity-DANG-Dawg at March 20, 2008 12:22 PM

Crid - you didn't read it so obviously nobody needs to listen to your opinion on it.

Kate - show me a bill Obama tried to pass about that even hints about reparations and I'll be happy to listen

Brian - I thought he was a Muslim terrorist sleeper cell.

Posted by: flighty at March 20, 2008 12:33 PM

> nobody needs to listen
> to your opinion on it

I never played pro baseball either. Is it OK to have an opinion about the Dodgers?

We've covered this in here many times. Earnest-seeming stooges will say "We need more honest discussion!"

Well, I don't. I have clear feelings and sturdy understanding about race, so there isn't so much to talk about.

You apparently disagree. Which is fine, we've been through this before. So again I'll ask: What is the precious little thing you want to say about race, or have said for you?

I'd bet ten thousand dollars that whatever you have to say is boring as fuck. And twenty thousand that it's just an excuse to wrap some pathetic little anecdote in chatter about complicated-sounding principles so that you can be excused for some niggling sliver of weepy prejudice sheltered in your own righteous heart.

No? Whip it out for us, big boy.

Posted by: Crid at March 20, 2008 1:08 PM

If he doesn't have the grace to discuss race productively --and apparently he doesn't--

How would you know?

He is a socialist. Maybe even a Trotskyite.

And you've already said Hillary's a Stalinist. And yet you've said you can't vote for McCain. Even against communist party members? I mean, the freedom of the U.S. and the world is at stake here. If one of them gets elected, all of our industries get nationalized and everyone has to go work on a potato farm!

Or maybe you've overstated things a bit.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 1:14 PM

flighty: Brian - I thought he was a Muslim terrorist sleeper cell.

I haven't heard that argument advanced by anyone with any intellectual honesty. I've seen no evidence to support the idea that he is either a practicing or secret muslim.

However all one needs to do is look at his fiscal priorities to determine where his political ideology lies.

He seeks to punish the productive classes for the benefit of the unproductive. Wealth redistribution is a hallmark of socialist economics. He seeks to inhibit free trade between consenting persons. He seeks to dictate the terms by which people may conduct their personal affairs.

Everything he proposes is anathema to liberty. He is a totalitarian, a protectionist, a statist, and a centralizer. Taken together, those things put him in the vicinity of Stalin, Trotsky and Mussolini. That he speaks in "revolutionary" tongues and advocates for an internationalist movement puts him squarely in the company of Trotsky.

Hillary is more of a Stalinist.

McCain? Who the fuck knows what he believes. He's a McCainist, most likely.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 1:18 PM

Even then, I'll blame the Democrats again.

Me too! But McCain is the perfect Republican to exploit these unforced errors, because the media love him and independents think he is a moderate (despite running on a platform that is Bush 2.0, and the fact that he thinks Iran is helping the Sunnis of AQI).

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 1:18 PM

Justin - I've also said that so far as the things that matter Hillary is indistinguishable from McCain.

Hillary on immigration: "Theres no problem here"
McCain: Ditto.

And so on. The only difference between them is degree. McCain isn't as likely to go for a whole-hog socialized medicine system, and he's not as likely to go for massive tax increases.

But he is more likely than not to side with the liberals just to stick his thumb into the eye of conservatism one more time.

So my choices in this election are basically Stalin, Trotsky, and Gorbachev. All of them are dedicated commies at some level. The question becomes who can do the least damage before running out of time.

I don't support McCain, but given the choices we have, I'll take the 73 year old of questionable health.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 1:22 PM

Justin - Iran IS helping the Sunni of AQI. And they were helping Sadr's shi'a too.

Ever heard of playing both ends against the middle? Sure, the Shi'a and Sunni can't stand each other. But you know what? They hate Jews and Americans more than they hate each other.

What was it that a prominent Palestinian said when the internecine war between Fatah and Hamas broke out? Oh yeah - "Brothers, why are we killing each other while Israel still exists?"

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 1:25 PM

Flighty -

you didn't read it so obviously nobody needs to listen to your opinion on it.

Honestly, no one needs to read anyone's opinion on it, thank you very much.

Brian -

everything Obama says can be safely disregarded for one reason, and one reason alone:

He is a socialist. Maybe even a Trotskyite.

Everything Brian says can be safely disregarded, for one reason and one reason alone:

He's batshit crazy. No holds barred, head up his ass, crazy.

Posted by: DuWayne at March 20, 2008 1:29 PM

Crid

My point was that you diparaged a very good speech you didn't bother to read. You said it was stupid. I disagreed and wondered why you thought as much. But arguing with someone who has no point to make is useless.

I thought you were going to offer an ineresting insight about why you didn't like it. But you won't.

No big deal. Life goes on.

Posted by: flighty at March 20, 2008 1:37 PM

DuWayne: He's batshit crazy. No holds barred, head up his ass, crazy.

Prove it. I think I've given sufficient evidence of the Messiah's inherent socialist tendencies. Prove me wrong. Prove he's got even one libertarian or objectivist bone in his body. Prove he's got one non-"progressive" thought in his pretty little head.

The so-called "progressive" movement, if allowed to have the power it craves, will destroy the human race.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 1:38 PM

flighty - what about this speech was good? From the transcript I read, I didn't see anything that had any actual meaning to it. It was a pure appeal to emotion. There wasn't one substantive thing said. In fact, I don't think Obama's ever said ANYTHING of substance.

Which makes his appeal completely indecipherable to me. But then again, I never went for the appeal to emotion.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 1:41 PM

Iran IS helping the Sunni of AQI. And they were helping Sadr's shi'a too.

Funny, cause Petraeus seems to think Syria is the major AQI supporter.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 1:49 PM

Brian -

I have about as much fondness for Obama or any other republicrat, as I have for a good dose of the clap. Finding out Obama likes to kick puppies and steal candy from toddlers, wouldn't do much to lower my opinion of him.

The so called "libertarian" movement, if allowed to have the power it craves, will also destroy the human race. And this is where the claim of batshit crazy comes to play. Because you seem to believe that anyone who fails to meet your extreme standards, is obviously in polar opposition to them.

Here's the blow; No pure political or economic ideology is ever going to work. Not socialism, not capitalism. Not libertarianism, not communism. Not even pure democracy can function without a tyranny of the majority.

The fact that most politicians recognize this is not indicative of their being anything but a politician. I have no fondness of anything republicrat. I think that the state of American electoral politics is abysmal and destructive to the very nature of representative democracy. I do not like a single fucking asshat running in this race, including indies and thirds. That doesn't mean any of them are fascists, commies or socialists. To claim otherwise is an exercise in juvenile hyperbole.

Posted by: DuWayne at March 20, 2008 1:51 PM

justin - how dense are you? Have you been paying attention at all?

Who do you think was supplying Hezbollah during last year's war with Israel from Lebanon? Right. Iran, by way of Syria.

Syria is a proxy for Iran. Syria (in defiance of the UN) still controls Lebanon. And still supports Hezbollah's continued attacks on Israel therefrom.

The shaped-charge IEDs in Iraq are being made in Iran. Iranian officers from the Revolutionary Guard have been killed and captured inside Iraq.

How anyone could deny Iran's involvement beggars the imagination.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 1:54 PM

How anyone could deny Iran's involvement beggars the imagination.

Iran is working with Shiia militias and is BFFs with the current government. But simply asserting that they would also be helping Sunni terrorists without any evidence is ridiculous. Provide a link and I'll eat my words.

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 2:25 PM

Work beckons. But a final thought: is anything that Wright said worse than the stuff said by people like Jerry Fallwell and Pat Robertson, people who are very important in the Republican party and social conservative movement?

"Maybe we need a very small nuke thrown off on Foggy Bottom to shake things up" –Pat Robertson, on nuking the State Department

"(T)he feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians." –Pat Robertson

"Well, I totally concur." –Pat Robertson to Jerry Falwell following the Sept. 11 attacks, after Falwell said, "I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way -- all of them who have tried to secularize America -- I point the finger in their face and say: "You helped this happen.

God continues to lift the curtain and allow the enemies of America to give us probably what we deserve.
Jerry Falwell

"AIDS is the wrath of a just God against homosexuals. To oppose it would be like an Israelite jumping in the Red Sea to save one of Pharaoh's charioteers ... AIDS is not just God's punishment for homosexuals; it is God's punishment for the society that tolerates homosexuals."

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 2:33 PM

I liked the way he explained his feelings on some of the achievment gaps between the black community and white community here, while not saying that this is what has held every black person back:

"But we do need to remind ourselves that so many of the disparities that exist in the African-American community today can be directly traced to inequalities passed on from an earlier generation that suffered under the brutal legacy of slavery and Jim Crow.

Segregated schools were, and are, inferior schools; we still haven't fixed them, fifty years after Brown v. Board of Education, and the inferior education they provided, then and now, helps explain the pervasive achievement gap between today's black and white students.

Legalized discrimination - where blacks were prevented, often through violence, from owning property, or loans were not granted to African-American business owners, or black homeowners could not access FHA mortgages, or blacks were excluded from unions, or the police force, or fire departments - meant that black families could not amass any meaningful wealth to bequeath to future generations."

And I liked it how compared this to the white immigrant view:

"In fact, a similar anger exists within segments of the white community. Most working- and middle-class white Americans don't feel that they have been particularly privileged by their race. Their experience is the immigrant experience - as far as they're concerned, no one's handed them anything, they've built it from scratch. They've worked hard all their lives, many times only to see their jobs shipped overseas or their pension dumped after a lifetime of labor. They are anxious about their futures, and feel their dreams slipping away; in an era of stagnant wages and global competition, opportunity comes to be seen as a zero sum game, in which your dreams come at my expense. So when they are told to bus their children to a school across town; when they hear that an African American is getting an advantage in landing a good job or a spot in a good college because of an injustice that they themselves never committed; when they're told that their fears about crime in urban neighborhoods are somehow prejudiced, resentment builds over time."

I felt that those sections really captured a lot of the resentment between both sides.

Posted by: flighty at March 20, 2008 2:38 PM

And which Republican presidential hopeful was attending the sermons of Falwell or Robertson for 20 years? Were Jenna and Barbara baptised by either of them?

How many Republicans defended Falwell when he made his asinine statements about 9/11? Oh yeah, none. In fact, he was pressured by Republicans to take it all back and apologize for being an asshole.

And you've got the wrong Pat on that one about feminists killing their children and becoming lesbians - that was Pat Schroeder if memory serves, speaking at a NOW event. She later claimed to be joking.

The fact of the matter here is that Obama has not only aligned himself with race pimps, he has embraced and followed them for twenty years. Whether he did so to gain street cred while not believing a word they say, or he did so fully supporting their radical agenda is really irrelevant. Either way, he's being disingenuous. The only difference is to whom.

All that aside, I've been against Barack Obama since he first popped on the scene. He is, at best, a black Hillary Clinton. Statist to the core. Committed to the idea that government knows best how to run the daily lives of every individual.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 2:40 PM

flighty - there's that word again. Feel

Doesn't anybody think any more?

Basically the entire thing was "things sucked, things still suck". The unspoken part was "and they'll continue to suck because I won't do anything to get beyond the stupid identity politics and grievance mongering that causes them to suck".

And do you honestly believe that segregation is the reason for the piss-poor state of the public school system?

Isn't it more likely that the systematic destruction of the black nuclear family through deliberate government manipulation is to blame? After all, those that do well in schools, public or not, regardless of race, tend to come from intact and functional families that stress discipline, hard work, and the pursuit of knowledge.

Posted by: brian at March 20, 2008 2:46 PM

> you were going to offer an
> ineresting insight about
> why you didn't like it.

Too late. Amy (and Taranto) and company beat me to it. What we got here is a typical politician who would throw his living, breathing grandmother onto the rails in front of the train in order to be elected.

It's good to know that. Did you follow Jamie's link to Sailer? Kevin Drum is quoted:


-- Obama routinely describes himself feeling the deepest, most painful emotions imaginable (one event is like a "fist in my stomach," for example, and he "still burned with the memory" a full year after a minor incident in college), but these feelings seem to be all out of proportion to the actual events of his life, which are generally pretty pedestrian.


I voted for him once, and may yet do it again. But it's good to see where the boundaries of his integrity are, even if mine are a few yards further out.

Posted by: Crid at March 20, 2008 4:12 PM

Nothing kills a person's work ethic like ongoing handouts.

Posted by: Amy Alkon Author Profile Page at March 20, 2008 4:15 PM

Ta-da!

> I liked the way he explained
> his feelings

Whatizis, psychotherapy?

> I felt that...

Grrr...

> ...those sections really captured
> a lot of the resentment between
> both sides.

Always with the emotions. I was right, boring as Hell. Can I have my ten grand now?

Posted by: Crid at March 20, 2008 4:17 PM

I was creeped out by the "typical white person" comment. I know a bunch of white people, and they don't have a uni-brain, as far as I know.

What is a "typical white person," and how does that person think?

Am I a "typical white person"?

Posted by: Amy Alkon at March 20, 2008 4:21 PM

In regards to the comparisons to Falwell: there is a huge difference between making statements about some cosmic/karmic force that punishes perceived immoral behavior, and stating "The government lied about inventing the HIV virus as a means of genocide against people of color. The government lied" (Wright). The former reflects a belief in divine retribution, the latter indicates an illogical, you-should-be-thrown-in-an-asylum type of paranoia.

Posted by: Darr at March 20, 2008 4:30 PM

Noted Libertarian and agnostic Radley Balko has a pretty rational, level-headed take on the Wright affair, as does religious whack-job Mike Huckabee:
http://www.theagitator.com/2008/03/19/huckabee-on-obama-wright/

Posted by: franko at March 20, 2008 6:43 PM

"...all of our industries get nationalized and everyone has to go work on a potato farm!"

Gasp! Even the tots?!

Posted by: Gog_Magog_Carpet_Reclaimers at March 20, 2008 8:02 PM

Even the tots?

What's more delicious than a tot? I love tots!

Posted by: justin case at March 20, 2008 8:42 PM

"I've heard it before - tons. I grew up hearing "I'm not prejudiced against black people, just niggers."

I think that's a Chris Rock routine and the last I heard, he is black.

You need some new material.

Posted by: Mike K at March 20, 2008 9:18 PM

You can choose your pastor; you can't choose your grandmother. You can't equate the two, or your association with them. But he tried.

Posted by: JulieA at March 21, 2008 12:03 AM

> How would you know?

I have great faith that if anyone developed any innovative perspectives on these matters, word would seep through the grapevine. Apparently that's not what happened this week. Instead, boyfriend got caught bullshitting... About his own grandmother... By all accounts, a loving woman still alert enough to feel the sting.

> Or maybe you've overstated
> things a bit.

Or maybe he has. Consider again the Sailer link from Jamie. It quotes Barrack Obama, the Junior Senator from Illinois: No one's putting words in his mouth.

What we got here is your typically desperate politician. No one expected anything else in an election year, but let's not kid ourselves either. An airbrushed cover of Rolling Stone doesn't mean that much, otherwise people would still be admiring Britney. And Grace "gunplay" Slick....

Posted by: Crid at March 21, 2008 1:52 AM

When talking about a "final resolution", it may be and it may not be that Obama is referring to some form of monetary compensation.

That is the beauty of double talk, it goes the way the listner does.

The way I see it, it doesn't matter if he is hardline opposed to monetary compensation, it was raised before, and I've not heard anything about him stone cold condemning it. And when discussing a "final resolution", ask yourself not what YOU think he means, ask yourself what the guy who WANTS compensation, thinks he means.

With double talk you get two votes for the price of one.


Bottom line for me, I've not heard anything all that grand about the latest greatest Republican candidate, and I've got nothing but bad things to say about Hillary, (didn't like her husband either), and Obama, who seemed a bright light, is looking more and more like a little bit of flouresence in the same damn tunnel.

I think Bush was the right candidate at the time, but I don't think we need another 8 years of him come election time, which from the looks of things, is what McCain would turn out to be.

Frankly, whoever is elected, I don't think it will be the president this country needs. In all honesty I've been out of the states so long these last few years, so far from the issues, it may be irresponsible of me to even cast a ballot this time around.

Posted by: Robert H. Butler at March 21, 2008 2:35 AM

Why is it always OK for older white people to be racist? This notion that Obama threw his grandmother under the bus by mentioning her in a speech about race in America is ridiculous. He brought up her racism to remind us that we all harbor some resentments and that some people (like his grandmother) are able to transcend those and wholeheartedly embrace people who don't look just like them.

People continue to accuse him of maligning Granny and Geraldine Ferraro keeps insisting that she is the real victim here and everyone sympathizes and feels sorry for them. But this loud mouthed pastor said some truly prejudiced things and people are acting like he's Hitler. Why is there never any slack cut for old black people? These are the folks who lived through Jim Crow and the Civil Rights movement. Sometimes they shoot off their mouths and say things that are truly ignorant and divisive. In the black community, we tolerate their tirades because of the systematic racism they endured in their lives. And we realize that the time has come to rethink that tolerance.

That, to me, was the point of Obama's speech. That there is plenty of blame to go around but we need to move past that. Those of us in the black community need to stop letting our elders say whatever they want to and apologizing for it because of their unfortunate life experiences. And white Americans need to come to the table with the realization of white privilege in America and the willingness to listen (really listen) to what's going in the black community. Maybe then we will finally end the two America's and just have one the way it should have been all along.

No, the government did not create AIDS to kill black people -- that's ignorant and ridiculous. But they did infect black men with Syphilis to study it's effect on human beings. Anyone who doesn't believe that can look through Bill Clinton's records to see the day where apologized on behalf of the government for that despicable act. So unfortunately, because of the true experiences of one group of people, you can manipulate a few gullible members of our society into believing that even worse things have occurred. The way Republicans have manipulated so many into thinking that unregulated free market economy is the greatest thing in human history. Now that your house is in foreclosure, do you still believe that?

Posted by: DC Fem at March 21, 2008 7:29 AM

There's are so many distortions in what you wrote above, I don't know where to begin. Also, I haven't had coffee yet, so I'll just take on a few:

Was she even racist? Or did that idea suit Obama's needs vis a vis his need to slink out of the Wright controversy. I've blogged before about his, uh, memory issues, vis a vis his "forgetting" that his sister got off a Greyhound bus from Africa and didn't come off a plane.

I was talking to my boyfriend last night about the idiotic idea that it's racist to avoid some questionable character on the street. I live in a neighborhood where there are some, let's say, ruffians. If I see a young, thuggish looking guy in a hoodie coming down the sidewalk toward me, black, latino, or white, I'm going to feel a little scared, and I'll walk in the street like I'm going to get my car. Furthermore, black men are in prison disproportionate to their number in the population. Jewish people have also had a tough time throughout history. The prison isn't filled with guys named Moishe, Max, and Schmuel. Tell me that you're about to cross paths with a young, thuggish looking black guy on the streets there in DC and you just walk past him like it's an old lady carrying a bouquet of lilies home. (Or a young thuggish looking guy of any race.) It's prudent, as a woman, to be street smart and to be "better safe than sorry."

Furthermore, Jews, throughout history, have plenty more than blacks to complain about, and while some do have a persecution complex, they aren't sitting around saying "The Holocaust is the reason we can't make it in the world." And neither, frankly, are my friends who are black and who are achieving things.

Furthermore, I don't see people high-fiving Geraldine Ferraro. She's been pretty roundly criticized.

I don't think racism by anybody is nice. I experienced anti-Semitism as a kid -- kids chasing me around, calling me dirty Jew, etc. And then I went to college at the University of Michigan, where I was thrilled to be in an environment where not everybody was white, like where I grew up, and I sat down at the end of a lunch table of black girls one of my first days in Alice Lloyd dorm, and they looked at me like I just squatted and left a turd in the middle of the floor of the lunch room.

What Obama did, if his granny was even "racist," was wrong because you don't reveal private people's private conversations or actions publicly. Note that there are no photos of my boyfriend on my blog, and if I refer to him, I just call him "Gregg." I am a public person, and he is not. While it's not a secret who he is, and it's pretty easy for anyone who reads here to figure out his last name and read about him, I didn't need him to even ask me before I decided that I would not "take him public" in his association with me by posting photos of him.

The point of Obama's speech is the point of every speech by each of these three sleazebags who are running: To get elected.

PS What are you actually DOING to change things besides leaving blog comments? I see lots of wind from people like Wright, but how about starting a program like I have. I go talk to kids at inner city schools to demystify making it. My next talk is next week (although we're waiting to hear back from a teacher on Spring break so it may shift), and I'll be there after that on April 16th, and I'm starting to bring in other speakers, too. My goal is to do one talk a month, although I got sick in January, and that screwed things up a bit.

Oh, and I'm whiter than a sheet of typing paper, see above, but Jesse Owens came and talked to my elementary school class, and I was very influenced by a woman my mother knew, and decided that kids in inner city schools would be helped by positive role models who show the step by step process of doing something cool and meaningful with your life.

Posted by: Amy Alkon Author Profile Page at March 21, 2008 8:19 AM

The way Republicans have manipulated so many into thinking that unregulated free market economy is the greatest thing in human history. Now that your house is in foreclosure, do you still believe that?

Forgot this bit. Corrections to your quote follow:

1. We don't have an unregulated free market, but if we did operate in a more capitalistic way we'd probably be doing much better (George Bush is the biggest big Democrat we've had in office in a long time, starting with that prescription drug bill he signed that will break us all...and handouts for Bear Stearns are the antithesis of free market capitalism).

2. My house isn't in foreclosure because I was taught by my dad never to sign anything without reading and understanding it first. If you can't understand it, you get somebody who can understand it (a lawyer) to read it and explain it to you until you can.

I don't own a home because, much like all those people who took out those insane loans, I can't afford one (at least, not in the community I want to live in). I'm what's called a Personal Responsibilitarian, a term I made up. I'm also a fiscal conservative. Don't spend money I don't have, and all that. Shocking concept, I know. And if I do buy something, I buy in bulk from Costco, if possible, and I buy my clothes and jewelry slightly used on eBay, on the 75% off rack at the designer resale store, or on clearance in January and August at Loehmann's. I use my credit card like a debit card, and pay it in full every month. And I bought my first new car ever, which I paid off at a rate of about 30% over the rate I was supposed to pay on my loan, to build my already excellent credit. If do someday buy a house, the loan officers will be chasing me down the street and begging to me to go with them.

Posted by: Amy Alkon Author Profile Page at March 21, 2008 8:28 AM

DC Fem, follow the fucking links.

Amy's item is deceptively titled: OBAMA'S GRANDMOTHER WASN'T A RACIST, and the (revised) anecdote by which he implies that she is horribly twists the facts.

*That's* what you need to know about this guy. That's how horny he is for the White House. Maybe American voters need this extremely weird racial psychodrama in their lives... I personally don't think so, but maybe I'm wrong. Nonetheless the fact that he's willing to pander this way doesn't make him more admirable.

Quite the opposite. He's not into the truth, and he's not into his own loving flesh and blood.

Posted by: Crid at March 21, 2008 8:34 AM

You need some new material.

Mike K, you are a moron. That had nothing to do with Chris Rock's "Black People and Niggers" routine and everything to do with how some white people in the South think and talk about black people.

Posted by: justin case at March 21, 2008 1:52 PM

Also, for the record, the US government did not infect black men with syphilis. They took men who were already infected and studied its effects. Still morally reprehensible, but get your facts straight.

Posted by: Amy K at March 21, 2008 2:17 PM

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