Friday, March 14, 2008

The Wright Stuff? and a 17People Rant

So after getting back from Vegas started to watch some CNN, MSNBC and Fox to catch up on the "news" and suddenly I saw two of the people above taking over the news. Two of the three people pictured above I had never seen or heard of before and the third person has slid in the background of the public eye for quite some time.

Yet in the past two weeks of the most contested Presidential Primary in over 40 years the story had become greatly about these three people. For those of you who don't know the people above they are Samantha Powers, Geraldine Ferraro, and the Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Each of the has made a statement, or in Wrights case statements, that have captivated the headlines of the Presidential campaign.

None of these people are on the ballot, yet the media and the campaigns have turned these three people into newsworthy stories. Two of them have had to resign their service to the campaigns, an act particularly funny because neither of them was even getting paid. The third has been publicly rebuked by his candidate and parishioner.

To recap their faults:

  • When she thought she was off the record Powers called Hillary Clinton a "monster" and was forced to resign her volunteer position as a foreign policy advisor
  • Ferraro made a ridiculous comment that essentially said Barack Obama is only where he is because he is a black man
  • Reverend Wright had some sermons come back to bite him and Barack Obama. Obama has repudiated the statements. To see the statements see the Reverend Wright in action

Powers statement was a mistake, but she is a casualty of politics of sensitivity. The Clinton camp was able to act shocked, appalled, and astonished by the statement in order to try and turn the news cycle in their favor. Powers is a Harvard Professor and a brilliant thinker, since she called a Presidential candidate a name she was pushed out of the campaign despite an apology where she said she 'deeply regretted' the comment.

Ferraro dug herself into the hole and kept digging it deeper with a lame attempt at explaining what she said. But to label Geraldine Ferraro a racist doesn't sit right with me.

As for Rev. Wright, I wish I could say that these statements won't effect people's views of Barack Obama but I think that they will play a role and are awful coverage for Obama especially. The views of Reverend Wright are the kinds of comments that really turn people off. What's worse for Obama is the people most turned off by these comments are the voters he has struggled with the most, middle to low income white voters.

Now I don't care what any one's preacher, priest, rabbi, imam, says in my voting for a candidate. But this again is the kind of story and issue that distracts from the real issues in our country. We have to make decisions on people who may actually do something on the issues that are really going to change this country. Barack, Hillary, or John McCain's priests views are not my concern and won't be when I go vote.

I wonder if the Right Wing radio guys who love to say Barrack "Hussein" Obama are happy about these comments or not, because it shows pretty clearly that Obama is not a Muslim.

The words of Reverend Wright, Samantha Powers, and Geraldine Ferraro to me don't reflect the views of Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton. Clinton and Obama's repudiations of these folks don't show me their character. This shows the never ending problem of this campaign which is that these two campaigns are similar in their views stances on positions so to grab the news all they have to do is grab at lame ass comments by supporters.

I hope against hope, that moving forward these two campaigns can get away from firing on each others staffs and supporters. These three are just the latest in a litany of people who get fired or slandered for having an opinion. Something called the 1st Amendment entitles them to these positions and to see them dragged through the mud is rather disheartening.

Some will say the Reverand Wright was waaay out there in his views. My experience in having had the great privilege to attend some African American churches is my campaign days is that Reverand Wright is not alone in these thoughts. Plus look at his congregation, they weren't booing him for his comments.

I have one thing to say to these two candidates and their campaigns.


I love hard nosed politics and participated in them when I worked on the trail. Yet, this past month has caused me to hate this campaign.

This is why I called on Hillary to drop out even after her Texas and Ohio wins. This race has deteriorated from campaign of ideals, hope, and change, to a complete embarrassment. I'm almost beginning to sympathize and understand why Ralph Nader decided to run for office again.

These two parties,,,, to put it clearly,,,, are failing this country. I dare say if Bloomberg got in the race now, I'd be very close to supporting him.

I just got my 401K monthly update and for the second month in a row I have had a negative month despite contributing over 10% of my salary. I know I'm not the only one and this is just one of the many issues we need serious people to solve.

I'm always told that when it comes to voters that,,, "I'm different" or "the exception" because I follow it closely, or because I read about policy and issues. That religion and personal lives really matter in choosing a candidate. Issues and policy are for 'egghead liberals' like myself.

Well, if history has taught us anything is that when a country or superpower reaches high levels of decadence, it is in danger of falling off that powerful position. Things have come to roost in America in many ways, and whomever takes over the Presidency is going to have to lead with vision and be tough enough to invoke real change.

Yet we are lost in a maze of bullshit and while it appeared Obama/Clinton were going to run a different kind of campaign,, they have failed to change the perception by lowering themselves to the levels they claim to be above.

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