Re: Sometimes You've Got A Really Ugly Bird In Your Hand

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Racist.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 11:46 AM
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I wonder if Michael Steele's leadership doesn't have something to do with this trend. There's been a huge exodus from the Republican party in the past few months, and I think people assume this is because moderates are increasingly freaked out by the Glenn-Beckish weepy psychosis of the party. But I bet a not-insignificant part of that exodus (to the Libertarian Party, the Constitution Party, etc.) has something to do with worrying that leadership by Steele makes it no longer The Great White Party.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 11:55 AM
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In which case, kudos to the Republicans for picking him, goofy as all the apologies to Rush Limbaugh have been.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:04 PM
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There's been an exodus from both "Democratic" and "Republican" self-identification, towards "independent", since the election. I thought that was normal, as people stop associating themselves closely with the party they most recently foted for.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:05 PM
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(and there's certainly room for a lot of argument about how much they did to attract it.)

There is?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:07 PM
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It is sad that Steele is such a goofball. Bling-bling!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:08 PM
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This was also a consideration in last year's Democratic primaries once it became Obama vs Clinton. Given that there are white racists in the Democratic party, they were going to be voting for not-Obama, and that raw fact was not Hillary Clinton's fault. It's what the campaign, or party, does with it that matters.


Posted by: DonBoy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:09 PM
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There have been so many rap battles on this blog lately, I feel like this needs to be posted. The Steele part (last two minutes) is truly great.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:15 PM
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I've been daydreaming frequently of late that the Republican party will completely fold, and a new party will emerge to the left of the Democrats to be the new opposition party.

I do this because I am too old to literally daydream about ponies.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:15 PM
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2-4: it's worth posting Silver's follow-up:

While these numbers aren't good for Republicans, I have somewhat more question now about whether this is a new phenomenon, or this is the continued manifestation of the same phenomenon -- the broad distaste for the Republican Party that we have been observing since at least mid-2006. If the "true" number of Republicans is about 25 percent, then surveys that end up on the low side of the margin of error, or which have Democratic-leaning house effects, are not infrequently going to show "shockingly" low numbers of Republicans, such as 21 percent, 20 percent, or even 18 percent. On the other hand, other regularly-published national surveys show the Republicans' numbers in the high 20's or low 30's.

So it's not really that huge a trend, and there's been something of an exodus from the GOP for several years. Especially given everything else happening to the GOP ltely, it seems like a significant stretch to attribute it to Steele.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:16 PM
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I don't feel at all sorry for the Republicans when it comes to matters of race. They've purposely and accidentally revealed their racism over and over again since the 1950 - 60s. It's not just an image problem. There is serious racism embedded throughout the Republican agenda, and I don't think it is there just to appeal to the racist vote among the populace - it's there because that is the way a proportion of the Republican leadership actually thinks.* And of late, they seem to be falling all over themselves to prove this.


*NB: I'm not actually calling everyone identified with the Republican party a racist.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:16 PM
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1) From a California perspective, the role of the Republicans as the "racist" party has become especially clear recently, but the relevant racism isn't directed against blacks at all -- the action here is entirely anti-immigrant and anti-hispanic, and I don't see anti-black racism as playing much of a role. Indeed, there's at least some effort by hard core CA republicans to play on the strongly anti-immigrant feelings of many blacks, e.g. using a black kid killed by an illegal immigrant as a symbol.

2). Out here, I'm pretty sure that the Republican party has the white racist vote locked up, but I'm not sure that's true everywhere. When I worked in Democratic politics in the Northeast, I encountered lots of people willing to vaguely hint that "they" were responsible for everything in the cities going to hell, but who were strong Dem voters for reasons connected to unions, cultural affiliation, etc. Surely a good portion of the Dem vote in places like MA,RI and PA come from reasonably racist types (obv not so racist that they couldn't vote for a party with a black leader, but still).


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:17 PM
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Seconding Sifu at 5, and will someone please close the bold tag on the update?

Thanks.


Posted by: Doug | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:17 PM
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When I worked in Democratic politics in the Northeast, I encountered lots of people willing to vaguely hint that "they" were responsible for everything in the cities going to hell, but who were strong Dem voters for reasons connected to unions, cultural affiliation, etc. Surely a good portion of the Dem vote in places like MA,RI and PA come from reasonably racist types (obv not so racist that they couldn't vote for a party with a black leader, but still).

Hunter S. Thompson's "Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail" is largely about this issue.

"Who will the hardhats vote for? Will George Wallace get the hardhat vote? Why is George Wallace running anyway? Do the other candidates want the hardhat vote now that it has been revealed as the Wallace vote? Why is it that nobody but Wallace knows how to talk to the hardhats? Hardhat hardhat hardhat."


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:19 PM
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12.2: I think that's right. The GOP have made themselves the party of southern racists (i.e. via Nixon's southern strategy), but hasn't necessarily made inroads to the same degree in e.g. Appalachia or the Northeast -- or maybe they have, but it's not prevalent enough, or there's enough social pressure that it doesn't control votes in the same way? Every regional racist is a unique (but white) snowflake!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:20 PM
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I'm offended by the fact that the post is limited to anti-black racism is now in big black letters.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:24 PM
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GOP deserves kudos for choosing him

Well, I guess. To me, it really had the ring of, "Look! We've got one too!" Not unlike Palin vis-a-vis Hillary Clinton.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:25 PM
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what i brought upon my head, the racism post!
what i find kinda racist is the images of Asians on the web, some news or advertising article and it's illustrated by Asian people images, on yahoo or msnbc or elsewhere, as if they pose as just unnamed models for the article
or maybe they pose as photo models as their job description, i don't know, but looks like as if it's whites' images then they are all are named individuals, if Asians they are just illustrative of something
i object when we are underrepresented and when are represented, i don't know what i want perhaps


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:26 PM
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15: Though looking at the McCain vs Obama results at the county level (I think fivethirtyeight has the maps pretty readily accessible) shows plenty of willingness to vote R at the presidential level in Appalachia.


Posted by: Doug | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:26 PM
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I don't buy at all that Steele drives away Republican racists. They may be irritated that it was such a transparent gambit, a la "Palin balances out Clinton", but people's racism is generally complicated enough to allow for a wishy-washy Republican and to still hold that most black people are X, Y, and Z. This is the same argument everyone made as to why Obama wasn't a viable candidate.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:27 PM
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pwned by 17.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:28 PM
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I think in the Northeast the racists moved to the suburbs, which made race a less-important political issue. (Though I have trouble wrapping my mind around the fact that Northeast surburbs going Democratic. The Republicans have really screwed the pooch with that one.)


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:30 PM
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I think Coates is missing something that makes peeling off that 20-30% a real problem for Republicans -- to put it crassly, so long as Democrats have the black vote locked up, Republicans, even when the party isn't doing anything politically overtly racist*, have the racist vote locked up. ...

This is wrong, the Republicans could get 20-30% of the black vote without losing the racist vote. Look at Strom Thurmand. For that matter the Democrats could get 20-30% of the racist vote without losing the black vote. You just have to be willing to try.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:34 PM
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Did you hear about the Republican Coyote?

Chewed off three legs of support and still caught in the racism trap.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:34 PM
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I don't think that the RNC deserves any special kudos for choosing Steele. Not only is he seriously weak sauce, he's currently occupying a throw-under-the-train position, until some more viable replacement, and a more viable moment for replacement, become available.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:35 PM
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Further, to the extent that Steele is alienating the racist base, I think it's less because the sheer fact of his blackness represents any real anti-racist posture on the part of the RNC (in which case kudos might fairly accrue), but because he says weird stuff that contradicts the party's official platform in prominent venues (which doesn't really reflect on the RNC's intentions at all).


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:41 PM
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seriously weak sauce

Exactly. It's similar to the way that Palin was a response to Clinton. Clinton's a genuinely tough, independent-minded, hawkish woman, so they shove Palin out there and say, "Do that weird caricature you do of the Republican version of a tough, independent-minded hawkish woman! But you know, in a way that won't piss off the sexist dudes!" Steele's in the same boat. It's like someone told him he's supposed to win over black voters without pissing off racists, so he does this weird dorky suit-and-tie "How ya like me now?" thing. It only makes sense if you accept the claim that people only like Clinton for being a woman, and only like Obama for being black. They're missing the point entirely.

And I've long said that, as much as I hate Palin, she was in an impossible position during the campaign, having to play the "independent woman" while watching her mouth in 10,000 other ways. In all those interviews she fucked up, I don't see someone with the intelligence of a third-grader, but someone who has to act like she's speaking from the hip while keeping to a narrow script. Steele's in the same position. Act like a maverick loose-cannon-type dude who speaks his mind, but don't piss off Rush.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:44 PM
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Palin was a peculiar case in that she clearly had no interest in politics outside of Alaska, so she had no ability to talk off the cuff.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:53 PM
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17 was my impression, post-ante pre-emption. They keep trying, and honestly, since Steele isn't really meant to attract blacks but to sooth the conscience of some whites, I think it works.

I'm sorry, but I just can't seem to put race foremost in any of my political calculations. I put class, economic concerns, social issues and urban-suburban-rural divides ahead of race and probably gender. Not that these don't overlap and merge in complicated and historically-determined ways, but I don't seem to be able to switch from saying the suburbs are all about white flight to political discussions about SUV's, carbon taxes, and high-density housing like flipping a switch.

Republicans can't afford to lose their suburban, exurban, and rural constituencies. Etc. Snowe, Collins, & Spector have campaign needs in common with Cornyn and Kay Bailey and those things are not racially determined.

(Race, gender, and class permeate each other and everything else, an looking at them directly makes my brain hurt.)

Okay, what is the number one litmus test for Republicans, besides torture? Taxes.

Now a committment to low tax rates may have some kind of racist element, but I am just having trouble adopting that as a model and a method for analyzing politics.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 12:58 PM
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As far as I can tell, the whole post talked about party identification and race without discussing issues.

The Republicans can't attract blacks without losing some whites because certain issues overlap strongly with with racial identification or actual specific interests

Looked it up the other day, and the NAACP & Urban League both opposed the Clarence Thomas appointment, partly because of affirmative action. You really can't talk about politics without talking about issues, and once you're into issues, I think race can & should become less relevant.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 1:10 PM
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it takes a real talent (or, I suppose, excess chemicals) to consistently miss the point as often as 31's author does --- yet still mostly follow a thread. Well done, sir! Few can walk the narrow line between inanity and mere stupidity for so long.


Posted by: weak sauce | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 1:25 PM
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31 gets it right.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 1:28 PM
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Maybe it wasn't about Strom Thurmond hinting he hated black people, but Thurmond's opposition to degregating the military and the Voting Rights act that turned blacks away. IOW, if Strom Thurmonf had said "I hate blacks, but will support desegration, civil & voting rights, and vote for all the other black interests. But I will still haaaatte black people" which consitutency would he have lost, blacks or racists?

23:Shearer, what parts of the Republican platform & ideology are you willing to abandon to get black votes?

Dammit, both parties seem to act like you can get votes with smiles, like its about who we like rather than what we want or need.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 1:30 PM
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self-criticism is a great personal trait, ToS
according to Mao


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 1:31 PM
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This dynamic can't last forever -- at some point the racist vote will have to be small enough not to worry about losing it.

Going with the comments above, I don't think it is racism per se that drives the issue. Which is why someone like Byron York can say he isn't a racist; he's doesn't hate black people, they just aren't part of the group of people that matter, just like the poor.

The whole set of issues memes that have come up from the Republicans since the election are all based in the Southern Baptist mindset. Religion, economics, the place of black people in society and so on, are all mixed together. Outside of the Southern Baptist groups (which comprise most of the active base of the GOP), there are other groups, but those groups don't drive the agenda except on guns (sagebrushers) and taxes (bidnessmen). From my point of view, the issue is not so much the racists, as the fact that the rich people (and the sagebrushers to a certain extent) were willing to accomodate cornpone Nazism to get what they want. The overt racism of late didn't pop out until Obama showed up. Before that though, they had no problems with torture and surveillance and giant deficits and the like.

There really does seem to be a patch of genuine racists (that is, their big issue is racism); outside of that they vote Democratic. That seems to be a purely Appalachian thing. The contrast with the Southern Baptists, is that the Southern Baptists are trying to preserve a system, the system that was codified in the Confederacy during the Civil War.

max
['And they obviously don't want to give up without another fight.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 2:01 PM
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17 is right. And Steele is almost as clueless as Palin, too. I want them to keep doing stuff like this.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 2:13 PM
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So that means that all the rednecks in Appalachia vote Republican? West Virginia is reliably Republican?


Posted by: bjk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 2:50 PM
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37: No.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 2:53 PM
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I already have my own troll . . . I should comment more often, keep h/m occupied.


Posted by: bjk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 2:59 PM
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bjk we're glad to have M/tch responding to your inanities; it's a public service.

If you ever asked a question that wasn't self-evidently moronic, I'm sure somebody would have more to say.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:02 PM
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The troll of my troll is my friend?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:03 PM
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Yeah, I'm the one that's trolling. Right.

If you actually do want to stick around, you're going to need to offer up some mighty fine pastry first.

Or, you know, at the very least you could phrase your questions in a manner that at least makes it appear that you're interested in honest debate rather than tendentious point-scoring.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:04 PM
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42.3: or, indeed, in a manner that provides any evidence at all of reading the thread.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:06 PM
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37:West Virginia is reliably Republican?

At the presidential level it is turning solidly in that direction. Look at the county maps for 2K, 2004 and 2008. They were reliably Democratic for... Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Hillary.

max
['BO is not one of them.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:09 PM
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As several others have mentioned, I don't think having figures like Steele will make much of a difference because general attitudes about race can coexist quit comfortably with contrary attitudes about individuals of that race. What drives the "race vote" in the GOP is mostly antipathy to blacks as a class of who people who are thought to claim special privileges and for whom a supposed "double standard" is thought to apply in terms of what you're allowed to say, feel, etc., about race. If Steele or Sowell parrot the party line that what's ailing black Americans is actually their sense of victimization, then they're exempted from the generally hostile attitudes, but their example doesn't do anything to change the resentment those attitudes are grounded in.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:11 PM
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I was just pointing out that there are plenty of "racists" in the Democratic party, the Republicans have no monopoly on that, and I helpfully pointed out where they could be found. But if you want to indulge in the fantasy that your opponents are all slobbering racists and fundamentalist rednecks, go right ahead, if it makes you feel better . . .


Posted by: bjk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:14 PM
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45: I agree, but that anxiety that blackness is special or deserves special attention is something that I'm sure must irk them about Steele's whole "hip-hop Republican" thing. In order to be a big-tent party, they do have to pay special attention to groups of people they think don't deserve special attention.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:15 PM
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46: seriously, you didn't even make it to comment 12 before settling, amid a gust of self-satisfied chortling, on your simple-minded troll?

Whatever response M/tch deigns to make is too good for you.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:16 PM
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47: I just don't see the evidence of an effect on the party. I'm sure they aren't happy with Steele, but the fact that he's such a clown probably suits their preconceived notions just fine.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:17 PM
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But if you want to indulge in the fantasy that your opponents are all slobbering racists and fundamentalist rednecks, go right ahead, if it makes you feel better . . .

Awesome.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:20 PM
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M/tch, I find your concise answers to bjk's rhetorical questions pretty funny. I don't think he deserves more than that.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:26 PM
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We're just a few Republican racists away from gay marriage and gov't day care, right? "Low taxes" is just code for "starve the welfare queens" . . . Convenient how all-explanatory "racism" is . . .


Posted by: bjk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:30 PM
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52: You start out in 1954 by saying, "Nigger, nigger, nigger." By 1968 you can't say "nigger"--that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states' rights and all that stuff. You're getting so abstract now that you're talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you're talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is that blacks get hurt worse than whites.

And subconsciously maybe that is part of it. I'm not saying that. But I'm saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other. You follow me--because obviously sitting around saying, "We want to cut this," is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than "Nigger, nigger".


Posted by: Lee Atwater | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:36 PM
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45 - Glad to see you sticking with that handle, CB. What's been really interesting to me over the past few years is the quasi-evolution of the position on race among the talk radio cohort. It's now acceptable to admit that racism exists if it's defined as dudes in sheets burning crosses, but the much bigger problem is always defined as political correctness gone mad. You saw this in York's statement* or Geraldine Ferarro's gob-smacking non-apology (""I am sorry that there are people who think I am a racist."). Maybe the apogee was that mayor in California with the high-larious watermelon White House email. I'm sorry anyone with thin skin was offended! Why do people make it so hard for us colorblind white folk to make a joke?

* And Jesus, how hard should it have been for York to walk back his statement? "Many of Obama's more socially liberal positions aren't as popular as they seem, because Obama's personal popularity among black voters disguises that his policies are less popular, even among those same voters" isn't remotely what he said, but it's within spitting distance and is a defensible statement that a non-schmuck might make.

"Low taxes" is just code for "starve the welfare queens"

M/tch, do you want to outsource this one to Lee Atwater?


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:39 PM
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Fuck you, Lee Atwater. You pwned me from Hell.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:40 PM
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But I'm saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other.

It's not really "abstract" and "coded" to the people doing it, though. I mean, sure, there's the "abstract" and "coded" stuff that you say when the cameras are on, but if we've learned anything by now it's that to committed movementarians all of that stuff is empty and disposable. The stuff underneath it isn't empty and disposable, it remain the real substance driving the agenda.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:44 PM
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M/tch, do you want to outsource this one to Lee Atwater?

No.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:45 PM
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52:

Who is this "you"? In 54 the Democrats were still the party of the South . . .

But I'm saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other.

I agree.


Posted by: bjk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 3:51 PM
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54: From the link at the end?

Here's Atwater, speaking anonymously in 1981, basically saying "Yes, large parts of our platform is designed to appeal to racist white southerners." "Fiscal conservatism, balancing the budget, cut taxes", "forced busing, states' rights" are all code words telling their base in the South that they're going to stick it to blacks.

And what did Democrats get by outing the coded racism in Reagan's platform, thirty years on?

We have a black President talking about "fiscal conservatism, balancing the budget, cutting taxes". I don't think this merely ironic, or even just the mistake Walter Benn Michaels has been going on about.

I think Democrats have been had. I think by focusing on Reaganism and Republicanism as coded racism, we have been deliberately distracted from issues of economic & social justice.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:08 PM
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47: I'm sure that bothers some people. I think the major part of the recent exodus in the Republican party is happening because, now that they're losing power, the coalition can't hold. They're losing on one side the people who disapproved of Bush b/c on immigration and spending he was too liberal, and they're losing on the other side the murky urbans who will vote Republican when they're scared of getting blown up or having an additional 3% of their income taxed (e.g., Andrew Sullivan, McCardle, my sister), but won't vote Republican if it means Palin and Rush get to drive the agenda.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:13 PM
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s/b "exodus from the Republican party"


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:14 PM
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59: Yeah, I see your point, but on some issues reagan and movement conservatism were right, and Dem cooptation of those issues was a good thing. Airline and telephone deregulation were good things, and a marginal tax rate of 70% is somewhat silly and counterproductive.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:23 PM
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33

Maybe it wasn't about Strom Thurmond hinting he hated black people, but Thurmond's opposition to degregating the military and the Voting Rights act that turned blacks away. IOW, if Strom Thurmonf had said "I hate blacks, but will support desegration, civil & voting rights, and vote for all the other black interests. But I will still haaaatte black people" which consitutency would he have lost, blacks or racists?

You are missing my point. In his last Senate campaign Thurmand managed to get 20% of the black vote. Which means it shouldn't be impossible for Republicans to get 20-30% of the black vote.

Dammit, both parties seem to act like you can get votes with smiles, like its about who we like rather than what we want or need.

Not everybody but you can get some votes with smiles, 20% isn't good but is a lot better than 0%.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:25 PM
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Airline and telephone deregulation were good things, and a marginal tax rate of 70% is somewhat silly and counterproductive.

Please to make your case.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:25 PM
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Reagan successfully turned "economic justice" into code for "give all of your tax money to lazy black people".


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:26 PM
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I think this post is way, way too kind to the Republican party. And I say that as someone who didn't acquire any particular Republican-related animus until I was an adult (that is, I didn't grow up in a household where they were badmouthed). I've been a registered nonpartisan for all but 6 months of my voting life, and I'm fully aware that there are individual racists among the Democrats, and that the party itself has institutionalized racism in a number of ways.

But as 5 and 12 and others note above, the Republican Party has made hating black people not just an institution, not just an identity, but almost a religion. They've done it pro-actively and repeatedly, at every level of the party, for a half-century.

I can't get into horsetrading discussions about how they could/should adjust their brand without having that fact sit there like a big fat elephant in the middle of the room.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:34 PM
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64: Don't mean to threadjack, I didn't think that would be controversial. Before airline deregulation, flight was basically unavailable to the middle class. Now, not so much. And don't you remember when you were a kid having to gather around the phone for calls to distant relatives, passing it around after your allotted time? Now, it's practically free. To me, that is economic justice.
The marginal tax rate thing is more complicated, but some of the historical rates are ridiculous: it got into the 90s in the 50s. The marginal tax dollars just end up getting diverted into shelters, legal or otherwise.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:35 PM
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Shearer, if you're going to make a trolling argument, for heaven's sake put a little effort into it. Longtime incumbents who are good at constituent affairs get more votes. Period.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:37 PM
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like a big fat elephant in the middle of the room.

I'M JUST BIG BONED, OKAY???!!/1!!


Posted by: OPINIONATED ELEPHANT | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:39 PM
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Please to make your case.

C'mon, Mitch -- AT&T used to forbid people from using answering machines and charge rental fees for their Princess phones. I'm not a fan of the Baby Bells, but Ma Bell would be worse (and, indeed, I think the slow return to Junior and Sis Bell in the form of AT&T 2.0 and Verizon has been a net detriment). How is it again that Carter got typecast as three inches to the right of Castro? The Panama Canal + a sandstorm?


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:50 PM
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Hey, interesting, the Republican Party rebranding video for its National Council for a New America is up at Pandagon. Only 1 minute 17 seconds -- go take a look. They aren't trying all that hard to signal acceptance to black folks, seems to me.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 4:59 PM
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There's one really stupid guy who works in our office sometimes, a born-again of German Catholic heritage, raised and lives in some posh suburb in New Jersey. During the primary race last year he came in one day worried that Obama was going to force slavery reparations through Congress somehow. He had no evidence for this -- he had just seen someone on a Fox News show raising the question, as in "Do we really know where Obama stands on reparations?"

This guy is utterly confused politically, so I decided to have some fun and started asking him questions about why reparations would be that bad, really. He immediately and rather strangely, I thought, jumped straight to telling a story about how when his mom had cancer and the state (maybe through Medicare?) paid to have a leased hospital bed placed in their living room. But then, he said, even though his dad was a "real, taxpaying citizen" and "had worked hard all his life," the state came and took the motor out of the hospital bed because some "welfare recipient" needed it. It wasn't until he finished telling the story that I realized I had just seen Atwater's legacy in action, transformed into folk wisdom for idiots.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:04 PM
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71: The accent in that video is kind of a hoot. "Roots" rhymes with "puts." "Alternateeves." He doesn't have the rest of the accent, so it sounds fake to my ears, but a few words of rural Oklahoman are an interesting dogwhistle.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:06 PM
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71: "rɘts" for "roots" and "alternateevs": they got my dead grandpa to do the voiceover.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:09 PM
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Curse you, AWB.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:09 PM
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Yeah, I was really puzzled by the accent. I know some people in the Pacific Northwest pronounce "roof" as "ruff," and the guy in video seemed to pronounce "grassroots" as "rutz," so I wondered whether it was supposed to be speaking to the guys in Eastern Washington state or something.

I dunno...any linguists around? Or whatever kind of specialist would know about accents?


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:09 PM
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Eastern Washington state

Where my dead grandpa lived! (Grew up in southern Utah.)


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:10 PM
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Yes, Montana too. Rut beer, also, and crick for creek.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:14 PM
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Coates, in the link above, talks about Clinton being able to pass welfare reform with impunity, with no loss of support from blacks.

I am trying to work this out without getting into Thomas Frank false consciousness territory.

The DLC, like Clinton & John Breaux, were white Southerners/Rim/midwesterners who had developed the fine art of getting black and especially white liberal votes without actually having to deliver anything, while following Republican-lite policies. Usually they are portrayed, how, as "pandering" to the white right as i they were radical progressives putting on an act?

No, they were centrist or right-centrist, corporate tools whose real problem, faced with Republican opposition, was mollifying and distracting their left.
They did this with careful code language, "Bring Us Together", and "End to Divisive Politics" "Bi-Partisanship" "Change" that were in the spirit of inclusiveness and pluralism, and sent the actual message:"I am not a racist, and if you vote for me, you aren't one either." That would be just enough in mixed states to get the white guilt vote, without being committed to increasing social justice or safety net initiatives.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:16 PM
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Pace Robert De Niro in This Boy's Life, I am convinced that there's no generally discernible PNW accent.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:17 PM
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Huh. I was fairly sure it was Okie, but don't some Western accents come from the Dust Bowl migration? Or are rural non-southern accents more uniform than I thought?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:17 PM
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Rocky Mountain English, apparently. Or a mix of that and Pacific Northwest more likely


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:19 PM
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From the link in 82 -

San Francisco Urban? Sounds hella dubious.


Posted by: Lambent Cacuts | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:35 PM
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||

Apparently it is going to be Sotomayer, who is way to the right of where Souter ended his career. So court net to the right. Liberals will swoon anyway.

No public plan in health care. House Dem left is screaming, but who cares about them, but it isn't as if Obama ever wanted asked for a public plan. So Health Care Reform will mostly be using the power of Gov't to bargain, and increase profits decrease costs for corporate America and decrease Medicare/Medicaid costs. Don't know if Jill Citizen will get anything. Liberals will swoon anyway.

|>


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:48 PM
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Yeah, I think that 82 website is well-meaning, but not particularly useful or accurate.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 5:50 PM
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67: I think crediting the development of fiber optic cable, digital switching, and in general, the development of information technology over the last 30 years to the deregulation of telecom is stretching things.

Also, people seem to be confusing the breaking up of Ma Bell in the 70s with all of the Republican driven deregulation that happened afterwards.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:10 PM
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My parents (rural MO born and raised) both say ruff for roof.

My dad also sometimes says warsh for wash.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:23 PM
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My wife gets pissed at me when I talk about driving down to Warshington, D.C.

The correct pronunciation in these parts is actually "Warshinnon."


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:27 PM
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My father in law says "warsh" and "Warshington," often with a good bit of emphasis, as if he wants you to notice his pronounciation. He was born in Indiana and lived most of his life in Ohio. Although he worked all his life in the industrial sector that dominates northern Ohio and Indiana, he seems to identify more with rural parts of the state. Molly may want to correct me or fill in details on this.

I think accent maps have to be more fragmented than maps of major cultural divisions like "northeastern" and "midwest."


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:29 PM
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Spike, you wouldn't happen to live near Balmer, Murland, would you?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:30 PM
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90: Sure do, hon!


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:32 PM
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Weird, from the accent, it's almost as though Balmer were right next to Louvull.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:35 PM
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and a marginal tax rate of 70% is somewhat silly and counterproductive.

Not if it only applies to people who make, say, $10 million a year.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:38 PM
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92: There are differences in the accent, though. Spike's "hon" is pronounced with a distinct distinct diphthong, which I can't reproduce typographically. The vowels in Balmer get stretched in ways they don't in other places.

To really appreciate this, you have to watch Pink Flamingoes, or other early John Waters movies.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:39 PM
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76: I say "roof" as "ruff". Don't ask me why.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:42 PM
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this article opens by mentioning that the top Danish income tax rate is 63%. This supposed drain on capitalist innovation hasn't stopped Lego from producing the best toy ever.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:43 PM
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63% seems about right. I think 70% would be pushing it, and 50% is not enough.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:50 PM
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The correct pronunciation in these parts is actually "Warshinnon."

Heh, absolutely correct. Kids who grow up around here are sometimes insistently corrected by their elders, though, as in: "What did you just say? Say that again. No, that is not the name of the place. Please say it again. It has a "t" in it, and it does not have an "r"."

You'll be able to tell that I'm reading the thread backwards.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 7:57 PM
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90: Not Dundawk?


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:04 PM
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84: Bob, where do you gather that Sotomayor is to the right of Souter? I haven't found anything good.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:11 PM
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Tangentially related to the rebranding, a recent Pew poll shows an interesting correlation:

White evangelical Protestants were the religious group most likely to say torture is often or sometimes justified -- more than six in 10 supported it. People unaffiliated with any religious organization were least likely to back it. Only four in 10 of them did.

Via (where down deep in comments there is a statistical attack and defense of the above interpretation; to my eye the defense wins handily).


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:25 PM
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100: I've decided to just assume that Bob's right; that way there's some small chance that I'll be pleasantly surprised later. (I couldn't find anything either, though. Just some "he said, she said" journalism about whether she's a liberal or a moderate.)


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:31 PM
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100, 102: The grooming of Sotomayer for the bench has been ongoing for more than a decade. As a result, if people think they know what her politics are, they're wrong. So let's hope that she's *just* like Souter, who, remember, was way to right of Souter when he got tapped.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:39 PM
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100:Firedoglake threads;appointment by GHWB;strong approval by the usual Republican suspects (3-4 votes for approval to the 2nd).

C Harden Smith

A comment down a ways talks about her ties to finance. I see no excited liberals anywhere, a few excited Latinos. She is called an "acceptable moderate" by conservatives, which means she is not acceptable to me.

See what I expect from Obama are Justices that will look good...be good...on civil rights, choice, whatever and rule for business interests.

I'll do more if & when she gets the nomination, right now it is just an impression from the usual suspects.

(PS:By the end, Souter voted more often with Ginzberg & Stevens than they did with each other. The most liberal Justice)

Who do I want? Doesn't matter who I want


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:42 PM
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If we have no idea what Sotomayor's politics are or will be, or what her tulings are or will be, we should definitely oppose her nomination, shouldn't we?

Unless we trust Obama like a God.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:50 PM
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Bob, if you want to get a sense of Sotomayor's rulings, you could try reading some of her decisions. F.3d is ready when you are.

Bear in mind that she hasn't actually been named yet.


Posted by: Duvall | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:56 PM
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You're not addressing me, bob, are you? Because that would make the blog cry. Regardless, Sotomayer's hardly my favorite choice. My point was that it's become harder, in many instances, to learn much about a top-tier judge's politics before they're tapped for the SC. I mean, if they want a seat on the bench, they're often very, very careful.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:57 PM
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And, to be totally clear, my understanding is that Sotomayer has been more careful even than most.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 8:58 PM
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106:And that is what I will do. I will not trust the Village calling her a moderate, the wingnuts calling her an extremist, or someone who cherrypicks from her record and opinions.

But I don't know why I should, save for arguments in blog comments. If Obama nominates her, she will be confirmed.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 9:13 PM
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86 gets it exactly right. Antitrust is not the same thing as deregulation.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 9:33 PM
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Not going to help figure out her real views, but this press release by Patrick Leahy on the blocking of Sotomayor (and other judicial nominees) back in '98 will a) get your blood boiling and b) show you what unprincipled asshattery any non-Federalist Society Obama nominee will face (which, of course, will be any of them). It's going to be the blubbery "Poor, Poor Pitiful Me" of all time. All for show.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 9:42 PM
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86

Also, people seem to be confusing the breaking up of Ma Bell in the 70s with all of the Republican driven deregulation that happened afterwards.

Actually the Bell break up was in 1984.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 10:43 PM
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FWIW, I believe (although I don't practice much in the 2nd Circuit) that the general consensus amongst lawyers who do is that Sotomayor is a fairly conservative vote in business cases, moderate-to-conservative in criminal cases, and moderate-to-liberal in civil rights/discrimination cases and cases that involve federalism issues. In other words, pretty much smack dab in the middle of the current "liberal" (really, "moderate") wing of the Court, and certainly someone unlikely to push the Court to the "left" (which is a pretty amorphous concept).

I believe the idea (which Ari may or may not be arguing, I can't tell) that Sotomayor could somehow be a liberal lion who has been hiding herself carefully in hopes of a SCOTUS nomination is extremely implausible. The appellate courts offer plenty of opportunity to be a liberal or conservative lion, and few with an inclination to do so would refrain based on the extraordinarily unlikely and random possibility of a SCOTUS nomination. The "stealth" justices were those with negligible track records, like Souter, or who weren't on the contemporary federal appellate bench, which offers plenty of opportunity to express a jurisprudence in big, ideological cases.


Posted by: robert halford | Link to this comment | 05- 3-09 11:35 PM
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The case against Sotomeyer


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:18 AM
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If anyone would change "Sotomayor" to "Sotomeyer", one would expect it to be the New Republic.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:20 AM
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But I bet a not-insignificant part of that exodus (to the Libertarian Party, the Constitution Party, etc.) has something to do with worrying that leadership by Steele makes it no longer The Great White Party.

Haven't we seent his before in the Clinto nineties with the exodus to the militias and such? when the crazies are out of power, the more loony go further to the fringes?


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:38 AM
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I can't understand how anybody is actually arguing against airline and telecoms deregulation. The taxation point was debatable, but the rest is just plain obvious.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:55 AM
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115

Oops, sorry about the misspelling.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:26 AM
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2

... But I bet a not-insignificant part of that exodus (to the Libertarian Party, the Constitution Party, etc.) has something to do with worrying that leadership by Steele makes it no longer The Great White Party.

I doubt this very much, I expect the average Republican has no idea who Steele is.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:32 AM
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I don't agree that Michael Steele will cost them the racist vote.

They need to go somewhere. It's like their party of last resort. Like dems for the hardcore leftist.


Posted by: ozma | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 3:09 AM
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7.


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 3:26 AM
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Damn. I meant 9.

Please subtract 2 from the above comment.


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 3:27 AM
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I can't understand how anybody is actually arguing against airline and telecoms deregulation. The taxation point was debatable, but the rest is just plain obvious.

If it's so obvious, then lay it out for us.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 5:20 AM
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121, 122: Um, what?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 5:24 AM
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Those Good Deregulations weren't just Republican endeavors - it was Ted Kennedy, for example, who really kickstarted airline deregulation; and the fact that the CAB actually recommended its own dissolution, while a classic counterexample to institutional immortality, also shows how much scrapping of pointless regulation had become consensus by then.

Reagan and "movement conservatism" corrupted the discourse into "Do you want to deregulate or don't you?", rather than anything rational or public-minded as was accomplished in part with airlines. They made deregulation mean huge corporate giveaways. Co-opting this brought no benefit to Democrats or to the country.

(Not to say this meaning-corruption couldn't have happened without them, of course. Money finds a way.)


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 5:52 AM
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Reagan and "movement conservatism" corrupted the discourse into "Do you want to deregulate or don't you?", rather than anything rational or public-minded

Exactly. Which is why I find "Dude, deregulation is good. It's so obvious!" type arguments like in 117 so irksome.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 5:57 AM
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Is anyone actually arguing against airline deregulation? (For telecom, the main step was antitrust rather than deregulation, as has been pointed out above.) I think MM just wants the hear the case for.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 6:03 AM
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As someone who doesn't fly very often I think airline deregulation was a net loss, as it leads to the average American complaining about how awful air travel is for about four hours per year, whereas prior to deregulation the average American couldn't afford air travel and therefore I would have been spared all the complaining, if I had been alive at the time.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 7:14 AM
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113: The appellate courts offer plenty of opportunity to be a liberal or conservative lion, and few with an inclination to do so would refrain based on the extraordinarily unlikely and random possibility of a SCOTUS nomination.

Normally I'd agree, but if you read the Leahy material I linked in 111 and other stories from the time of the 1998 confirmation, you will see that that entire episode played out under the assumption that she was a "likely" Supreme Court nominee. I'd prefer someone else for that and several other reasons including that she was first appointed to the bench by HW Bush. But not someone I will be too concerned about.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 7:46 AM
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127: Everytime a big airline threatens to go under, I see an article blaming deregulation. I don't know enough to argue a positive case about the deregulation of either telecom or airlines, but I know M/tch and I don't simply have to accept the burden of proof here. This is not somethign that "everyone knows" is good.

I also know that simply pointing to falling prices and increasing availability are the norms for technology driven industries. So to prove deregulation was good here, you need to do more than simply point to the state of the industry. This is especially the case for airlines, where serious market instability has been the norm since deregulation.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 11:21 AM
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127

Is anyone actually arguing against airline deregulation? (For telecom, the main step was antitrust rather than deregulation, as has been pointed out above.) I think MM just wants the hear the case for.

I don't agree about telecom, regulatory policy was and is important.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 11:42 AM
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regulatory policy was and is important

No James, regulatory policy was not, is not, and never shall be important in the slightest. I'm so glad you were able to discern that this is the claim being made. You're either incredibly brilliant or incredibly ingenuous, it's so hard to tell which.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 11:45 AM
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120: See Shearer's 23: "Democrats could get 20-30% of the racist vote without losing the black vote. You just have to be willing to try."

Or, you know, you could try and send a message to the electorate that racism is no longer fashionable, and maybe make the world a better place.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 11:48 AM
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you could try and send a message to the electorate that racism is no longer fashionable

No way. Racism is the new black.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 11:49 AM
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133:Or, you know, you could try and send a message to the electorate that racism is no longer fashionable, and maybe make the world a better place.

After 350 years, I've about given up on them.

Maybe we can send them back to Scotland?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 11:51 AM
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Since AFAIK Obama isn't close to Sotomayor, and SS is not an outstanding pick on the merits, just adequate-to-good (Wood, Kagan, or Koh would impress more), I've decided the interesting story here is whether Obama will go with the default Village pick, Sotomayor.

Obama, as he said in the news conference, does have a whole lot on his table right now, so I won't hold it against him, but it feels like appointing SS will be letting the Village make the pick for him.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 11:58 AM
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Since AFAIK Obama isn't close to Sotomayor, and SS is not an outstanding pick on the merits, just adequate-to-good (Wood, Kagan, or Koh would impress more), I've decided the interesting story here is whether Obama will go with the default Village pick, Sotomayor.

Have you found any facts to support any of this?


Posted by: Duvall | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:12 PM
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137:I have jpgs of Obama not standing close to Sotomayor on multiple occasions, available on request.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:19 PM
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136: Who exactly do you mean by the "Village" here, bob?


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:22 PM
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139:DC Beltway Establishment, including MSM & Congress, with franchise sites in NY, Boston, Chicago, etc. It has been less than a week, and SS is at the top of everyone's rumour list. The only other I can remember being favoured so fast was Roberts, who was a longtime Beltway player.

Now it could be that Sotomayor's name has been leaked already by the Obama team, or those who have seen the Obama list that I'm sure they have been building at least since Ginzberg was ill. But usually the White House likes more than one person to get the attention and flattery of being under consideration, and Sotomayor doesn't really need any "trial-balloon" public preparation, so I don't think the leak has come from the White House.

Therefore I believe that certain players have leaked her name because she is acceptable and desirable to those players, probably acceptable to Obama, and to put pressure on Obama. A "Village" pick.

Those players would include Chuck Schumer, "moderate" Republicans on the Judiciary committee, etc.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 12:49 PM
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Here's Yglesias on "Sonia Sotomayor's IQ" with comments.

This is, as I expected, going to move into the usual Affirmative Action morass, where as in #137 above, I am asked to "prove" that Sonia Sotomayor is not the best legal mind in the nation, or the best legal mind among qualified Latina women with interesting biographies from NYC or whatever. The idea is to put me on the defensive, to change the question from "Why Sonia Sotomayor?" to "why not?" and to imply that the "real why not" is ethnicism or sexism or elitism.

And it is really pretty funny, because already, less than a week on, the commenters suggesting other women and/or minority candidates (Can we just look at Elena Kagan?) are whimpering in the corner.

Liberal Village default.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:10 PM
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SS is at the top of everyone's rumour list

This could partly be just a function of filling two of the desired demographic boxes, Hispanic and female.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:10 PM
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141: The idea is to put me on the defensive

And this cunning plan to put you on the defensive, formulated by the Beltway Establishment, including Congress and the MSM, and some people in NY, Boston, Chicago, certainly seems to be bearing fruit.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:27 PM
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The idea is to put me on the defensive, to change the question from "Why Sonia Sotomayor?" to "why not?"

You're the one who made the "why not Sotomayor" claim. Only you haven't actually offered an argument for that point.

If you want to argue that Judge Sotomayor shouldn't be named to the Supreme Court, then find some evidence against her and make that case. If you want to argue for another candidate, then pick one and make *that* case.

But either way, stop whining about unseen motives and make a fucking argument.


Posted by: Duvall | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:28 PM
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I don't know why the bloggy jargoniness of "Village" grates on my nerves so, but it does. Who started that one?


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:33 PM
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(I didn't mean that annoyance to be directed at Bob; he just reminded me of the existence of the term.)


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:34 PM
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145: I think -- and I may be way off -- it grew out of that horrible, classist (Sally Quinn?) article about the Clintons, which quoted David Broder saying something like, "They came to town and they wrecked it. And it wasn't their town." Atrios then popularized (if not coined) calling the residents of this delicate and threatened town "the villagers."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:42 PM
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145: Greg Sargent piece on the use of the term. Apparently first used by Digby in this context, playing off the Sally Quinn's infamous 1998 article on the Washington establishment's views on Clinton/Lewinsky.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:45 PM
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147: Yes, David Broder was represented with not just one, but two of the most fatuous quotes in the history of mankind into the article (they both *really* ripened over the course of the Bush presidency).

"He came in here and he trashed the place," says Washington Post columnist David Broder, "and it's not his place."

"The judgment is harsher in Washington," says The Post's Broder. "We don't like being lied to."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 1:50 PM
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143:It Does So Seem

Three days after Souter's announcement Matt Yglesias is already in "support & defend Sonia" mode. Now SS is the Establishment default and will likely win with 70 Senate votes, yet the center-left is still gearing up for the fight with the rabid & irrelevant right. The discourse has been framed.

So if I were to say:"Kagan is brilliant and very liberal." the response from Democrats like Duvall will be "Are you saying Sotomayer is stupid and a conservative? Well, I guess you are only halfway agreeing with Jeff Sessions."

As I did below in LB's thread about Byron York, I am interested in the ways that the center-left is turned towards its right, as if arguing with the wingnuts was the most important fight, and how that moves the discourse & policy space to the right, and removes the left from the conversation altogether.

Both MY and Ezra jumped on Nelson & Specter for saying that any public plan for healthcare was a dealbreaker, when Obama had always made it clear he wasn't asking for one. Obama let mortgage cramdown die without a word, but the blame has again been put on the Blue Dogs.

144:Duvall, the Village gave us Robert and Alito. I don't serve the Village or Obama, and I don't accept their framing and terms of debate. Or yours.

145:Newberry this week called the the Establishment the "Franchise" and said "The Village" was the discourse space. Do you like that better?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 3:20 PM
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Matt Yglesias is already in "support & defend Sonia" mode.

Ah yes, Matt Yglesias, that highly influential beltway insider.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 3:53 PM
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It's a sad day when the Establishment conspires to keep down the former Dean of the Harvard Law School.

Bob, could you explain why Elena Kagan is uniquely brilliant and very liberal? I'm not disagreeing with either; I assume she's brilliant, but I have no idea whether she's liberal or moderate.

For what's it's worth, I'll be a bit surprised if Obama doesn't name Kagan to the Court within the next couple of years. He's already appointed her to one prominent position.


Posted by: Duvall | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 4:01 PM
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If Cockneys made country music, "Sometimes You've Got A Really Ugly Bird In One Hand" would be one of its greatest hits, and it would come from an album entitled " ... And Another In Shepherds' Bush".


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 5:04 PM
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153: Brilliant.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 05- 4-09 5:15 PM
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Chiming in to agree that the breakup of the phone monopoly and airline deregulation were good things. The first made all except for local calls cheaper, and it's not like local service is particularly expensive now. I remember moving back to the US at the end of the eighties and being shocked by how much cheaper phones were. Domestic (continental) flights were also night and day compared with Europe. The fact that airlines keep on going bankrupt is evidence for that - do you want big corporate profits and higher prices? In general I'm very leery of government sanctioned private monopolies. Either nationalize the damn service or deregulate it. And in the case of telecommunications I want them deregulated, in fact I'd like some serious intervention by the antitrust authorities now, ditto on cable. On energy I don't know, EDF isn't bad, on the other hand the French don't have Republicans coming to power on a regular basis. Corrupt crony capitalist Blue Dogs (the US equivalent of the mainstream French right) are annoying, but they're not as bad as our right wing.

On taxes, seventy percent would be fine if it were applied to the very rich only IMO, rather than your typical two income professional couple in their peak earning years (earning 125K really isn't that unusual as a top level income for professionals). But in any case, let's not make straight comparisons between European rates and American ones. The European countries tend to have minimal or no local and state taxes


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 05- 5-09 1:10 AM
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Airline and telephone deregulation were good things

...for which we can thank the administration of one Jimmy Carter*, along with a couple of liberal academics.


*The deregulation of airlines, trucking, railroads, and energy occured on Carter's watch. The breakup of AT&T came later, but the consent decree that accomplished it was approved by a Carter appointee to the federal bench, and the antitrust complaint against AT&T was vigorously pursued by the Carter justice department.


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05- 7-09 10:11 AM
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Badly pwned by 125. Minivet is of course absolutely correct that the movement conservatives hijacked the term "deregulation", which in the 1970s referred to the dismantling of government control over prices and rates of return, and made it mean "elimination of any environmental or consumer protection rules that business doesn't like".


Posted by: pain perdu | Link to this comment | 05- 7-09 10:14 AM
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When your comment was pwned by over 76 hours, "badly" seems quite an understament.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 05- 7-09 10:22 AM
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pwned epochally.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05- 7-09 10:22 AM
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