Elections '08

Nevada Counting: And it’s…Hillary (and Robocalls and Mud)


I’m catching up on weird housekeeping
tasks like….um….putting away the last of the Christmas decorations (yes, I do decorate, but I was in Vermont when I normally would have taken them down, so sue me.)….while watching the Nevada returns:


When Cesars Palace reported it was:
16 delegates for Hillary
17 for Barack

Yet, ten minutes later, the percentages change with 23 percent reporting, CNN says Hillary’s ahead 55 to 53 percent….

THE OBAMA FOLKS OF voter intimidation around the support of the Culinary Workers Union….and general all round mud slinging (the horror!) Read Marc Cooper’s smart commentary about Bill’s barrage


WLA COMMENTER REG, who posts at Beautiful Horizons, alerted me to this video of Obama talking to the editorial board at the San Francisco Chronicle.


1:10 PM – NBC just declared Hillary the winner… CNN also projects a Hillary win.

1:40 pm: Out of a little over 9000 10,000 caucus delegates, Clinton won by 478 573 votes, at this point, although those numbers continue to change (and the Clinton margin seems to widen).

Is it just me or is CNN’s “Ballot Bowl” theme just at tad annoying? It isn’t football, people.

When talking about pork barrel spending and legislative earmarking he said, “I got an email from a man the other day that said, ‘As a former drunken sailor I resent being compared to members of Congress!”

ABOUT THOSE ROBOCALLS: Ben Smith at Politico reported the claim from the Obama camp about a series of Robocalls that the Obama folks say came from a Nevadan’s answering machine. The call criticizes Obama for taking money from special interests while repeating his rarely used middle name: “Hussein” several times with obvious emphasis. Here’s a link to the recording so you can listen for yourself. (It would be funny if it weren’t so purposefully vile.)

Odds are there will be more dirty tricks on the horizon,
folks, and at the moment anyway, the chief tricksters aren’t Republicans.


  • I put up an interesting video of Obama talking with the SF Chronicle editorial board on Beautiful Horizons (click “reg”). A welcome relief from the soundbites and semi-bogus programmed debates. If you want to see the guy “unplugged” it’s worth the 52 minutes.

  • As to the Clintonites mud, “bring it on!” We’ll see how that stuff plays in the next primary state with a large black electorate.

  • I think Obama will do well in the South, even with whites, who would favor a well-spoken, educated black man over sociopathic white trash.

  • Celeste, you think there are dirty tricks in Nevada? Check out the “Action” in Myrtle Beach! The voting machine weren’t working and voter were told to try later. Some were told to leave their phone numbers and they would be called back when it was fixed! John McCain won the region in 2000 and expected to do well again this time.

    God! I just love the GOP!

  • Marc Cooper’s “smart commentary about Bill Clinton’s barrage?” You are one of the last handful of people left who doesn’t see what a bizarre barrage of rants Cooper has been engaging in against the Clintons. His series in the L A Weekly is so over the top hateful, there are numerous reader comments to that effect attached to his anti-Clinton missives like “The Clinton Machine Won’t Go Gently Into the Night,” (1/9), etc. etc. People wonder about the source of his biased hatred against Bill in particular, and even about his mental state — in this week’s issue, a Letter to the Editor notes Marc’s been on a “hateful rant” against Bill for at least 10 years, because of some jealousy issues.

    Meanwhile, Marc’s equally laughably biased annointing of St. Obama as everything from the successor to MLK to the Nazis and suffragettes, just because Obama himself makes these analogies, is totally biased journalism in the other extreme. Celeste, either you’re being loyal to a colleague in the extreme, or you haven’t been following his “extremely smart” hatchett pieces and reader reactions to them. Woody calling Clinton “sociopathic white trash” makes them perfect allies in the War On the Clintons. Really curious, the way the political extremes obsess with hating on them to the point of some psychological condition that merits its own diagnosis: “Clintonosis?”

  • WBC: I’m aware of Marc’s anti-Clinton rants. (No doubt you remember that I’ve had my own moments of anti-Hillary semi-rants.)

    But if you read Marc’s piece for Huff Post, you’ll see it isn’t one of them. I’ve really enjoyed all his reporting from Nevada and, earlier, from Iowa. Although the pieces have a POV and a voice, unlike his Weekly columns and his blog, which are intended to be opinion-based, the Huffington Post reports are just that: reports

  • Turns out Obama won the delegates contest in Nevada. Very complicated system (I guess kinda like the electoral college.)

    “successor to MLK to the Nazis to the suffragettes, just because Obama himself makes these analogies” – I’m tempted to ignore this mess of a mind because of the banshee attacks my comments generate, but the incoherence level just got ramped up.

  • Rebel Girl – look at what Obama’s pulling off compared to the poll predictions of December in various states. On to South Carolina…

    Personally, I’m very please – especially watching the Clinton camp go into hyperventilating mode. I can’t make any predictions, but this is a real fight and the “inevitability” and “experience” camp are struggling in what’s becoming a dead heat that they never bargained for. It’s not their most effective or endearing mode…

  • WBC, where I live, Bill Clinton is considered white trash. Just look at his upbringing, and he never lost it. It’s not a psychological syndrome to describe him and his trash-talking wife with those terms. Seeing them for what they are comes from knowing people over the years and realizing that money and power don’t take the trash out of some people who continue in those ways. They never acquired Southern genteelness and are dirty talking, dirty fighting, lying street fighters with no class.

  • Well, well what do you know, I have to agree with WBC comments about Marc Cooper. When I read Marc Cooper stories about the Clinton’s it’s painfully obvious he is damn mad. A scorned woman could write a more balanced report on her cheating husband. Woody and Marc are perfect allies against the “devil” which is Hillary Clinton. I’m not a big fan of Hillary but I’m pretty sure she is not the “devil”. I can’t take Marc Cooper seriously, when writing any story about the Clintons.

  • LAR, rather than discuss the point of the stories by Marc, ask whether or not they are accurate and, perhaps, present information that the major Clinton media intentionally omits. HRC is dangerous–a word that I use thoughtfully.

  • Woody, as I said, I don’t find Marc’s Clintonosis rants at all accurate or factual — and certainly add nothing new to the discussion. This Huff Post piece is rather mild, but just adds another episode to his saga of “what’s wrong with Bill” — “Bill’s barrage” as Celeste puts it. I don’t know what “major Clinton media” you’re referring to, but all their faults and foibles have been written about ad nauseum, but rarely this repetitively with this level of undisguised and biased hatred. And in fact, I think it’s a fair gripe that right up to New Hampshire, the media was openly biased against Hillary, harping on her “lieability factor,” every negative from their past, while giving Obama a total pass — in fact, annointing him with the mantle of MLK, JFK, anyone they could think up. I’m someone who disliked the old, brusque, know-it-all Hillary, but I’ve become more sympathetic to her precisely due to this double standard. Hillary’s time in the Senate has toned her down a lot and made her more conciliatory, but those like Marc (or you) hate Billary with a visceral venom going back to his time in office. This makes anything he writes about them irrelevant and not worth reading.

    I’d suggest that you read the body of Marc’s work on the Clintons and see for yourself, but you may well be one of those who can’t see the bias because you’re so glad someone is doing this hatchett job on the evil “machine.”

  • I meant the media was harping on Hillary’s “likeability” factor, not “lieability factor,” although of course credibility is always a key issue with politicians. I’d say that she is among the most credible in that regard, whereas Obama makes vague promises he can’t be pinned down on or doesn’t seem to have evaluated all the consequences of. (E.G., on Iraq — he plans to withdraw all forces from Iraq immed. as would Edwards, telegraphing to the enemy: just sit and wait a year, and you can overrun Iraq…” Hillary’s gradual pullout gives the Iraqis time to step in; if they fail to do so, they’ll at least have been given the change to secure their own country.)

  • Where Woody lives is probably lily-white Atlanta that only wants to see blacks serving them their mint-julips and still read Maggie Mitchell. Talk about trash!

  • “Obama makes vague promises he can’t be pinned down on or doesn’t seem to have evaluated all the consequences of. (E.G., on Iraq — he plans to withdraw all forces from Iraq immed.”

    This is simply false. Where does this person come up with such nonsense ? I’m still trying to figure out the “nazis” reference to Obama.

    I’ll try to maintain radio silence on these wacky WBC posts from now on, because countering the mushbrained stuff is a fools errand.

  • Obama’s views on Iraq are clear and have also been stated in the comp analysis of candidates’ views compiled by the AP writers in the report I ref’d a few days ago. Too bad you don’t know what your candidate’s views are on this, but to deny them at this pt. and attack the messenger is just odd.

    Yes, it is also odd that Obama should make such grandiose claims about his political lineage, and that it should be taken at face value by Marc, in fact glorified, but that’s the very nature the situation.

    Marc writes in his hatchett piece in the Weekly 1/9, quoted above: “As I thumb through my reporter’s notebook from Iowa, I see great wisdom in one of the more piercing passages (!) from Obama’s stump speech. Quoting not LBJ, but rather MLK on what the latter called ‘the fierce urgency of now’ (gee, that sounds deep), Obama flashed a wry smile as he stretched his lanky arms on the podium…”

    “And the, citing the blood and sweat invested in the abolition of slavery, women’s suffrage, the defeat of fascism and the winning of civil rights, he added: ‘We’ve never had meaningful change in this country unless somebody, somewhere stood up to do something others said couldn’t be done.'”

    (Okay, now: Not only is it preposterous to make himself the successor to MLK, civil rights activists (Bill has a very strong record on that, going into a old-boy Southern state from a northern civil rights background) abolitionists AND women’s suffragettes — openly trying to steal Hillary’s territory — but trying to tag along on the coattails of those who fought fascism, which was fought abroad not “in this country,” as he clumsily states, is just plain ignorant or intentionally counfounding. To lump all those battles together, in one run-on sentence, under his own mantle is ludicrously pompous, “wry smile” and “lanky arms” notwithstanding.)

    Marc concludes his brilliant, objective analysis: “In the weeks ahead, fortunately, we face nothing so dramatic as Panzer divisions or even fire hoses” (so why bring up this imagery? because the reality is so innocuous?), “but rather just a couple of moth-eaten political hucksters. No one has to die or even face down dogs and nightsticks.” (Really? “Moth-eaten political hucksters” and “Panzer divisions and fire hoses” aren’t the same thing? Then why force this ludicrous and utterly irrelevant analogy here? Oh, yeah, because Obama dragged in the fight against fascism, too, as part of his own political lineage, and Marc is trying to belabor it on his behalf.) “All they have to do is…decide if, once again, they will be conned into voting out of fear…The fight is on.”

    I guess this mushbrained stuff and nonsense is persuasive enough for the logically and critically impaired, but it’s insulting to the rest of us and makes the Clintons come out much the better for the comparison.

    (As does trying to make Hillary out as some sort of racist because she commented that it took the President, LBJ, to push to enact MLK’s moral battles into legislation. At that time, for a white President to take such an unpopular stance took guts, too. Many blacks see Bill’s legacy as similar, and Hillary has a right to play on that — much more than Obama does to lay claim to involvement with the women’s suffrage movement, abolition or defeating fascism!)

    After this, “radio silence” whatever that is, on reg’s and Woody’s wacky, mushbrained and gratuitous postings.

  • Obama doesn not have a plan for immediate withdrawal of troops from Iraq. It’s that simple. You don’t know what the hell you’re talking about. He’s talking about bringing out a brigade a month.

    Here’s the Clinton plan from Hillary’s website: “Starting Phased Redeployment within Hillary’s First Days in Office: The most important part of Hillary’s plan is the first: to end our military engagement in Iraq’s civil war and immediately start bringing our troops home.” But neither support “withdrawing immediately” – only beginning to disengage immediately and starting a “phased redeployment.”

    Both Obama and Clinton plan to keep a residual force in Iraq to deal with al Qaeda if there’s a resurgence. Edwards wants to keep his residual force in Kuwait, not Iraq.

    Please stop the nonsense. My head hurts when I read this counterfactual bullshit.

  • I know I pledged no more responses to this horsehocky, but I can’t stand reading nonsensical, ignorant spew and letting it stand.

  • Of course your head hurts, reg. It’s like a broken kaleidoscope with all sorts of idea fragments jumbling around in there, and when they come out, they’re just as fragmented. Back when I was teaching English composition to freshmen, my/ our biggest challenges tended to be the Engineering students, but your head-splitting level of incoherence, incomprehension and susceptibility to fancy-sounding gibberish would require a prerequisite of two years at community college. At least. You are a perfect disciple for Marc.

  • You’re a mess. Try responding on the level of fact and not unhinged self-regard and obfuscation. It scares me that you taught English composition.

  • Does anyone have a problem with a church, filing as a charitable organization with the IRS, involved in politics and giving a forum for Democratic candidates?

  • Hey, quit with the insults about community college (sniff, sniff). It’s bad enough the way words like “white trash” and “trailer trash” and lil’ old “trash” are thrown around here and other blogs – jeez.

  • Sorry, but that is the main role of CC, to prepare students for the rigors of a competitive 4-yr college. It’s the main selling point of Santa Monica College, after all. (One of the better CC’s as determined by students’ admission rates to 4- year colleges.)

    None of which has anything to do with who’s trash, trailer trash or white trash — especially as the Clintons are both double Ivy League grads, Harvard and such, but that doesn’t seem to make no difference down south as to whose “genteel” or not. I guess rough talking earns you that distinction, whereas an actual IVY education is actually a thing to be regarded with some suspicion — exposes you to too many new and unusual ideas, and all.

    There are all kinds of snobs, but I guess to education snobs Yale ain’t Riverside Community College any more than a Honda Civic is a Bentley. (Since I believe in the American tradition in risin’ above your circumstances, I tend to value the education you earned above the station you was born to. I sho’ met a lot of fine ladies down south who can sip a Mint Julip but they’s dumber than a possum on a hat. But then that’s me…)

  • Just for the record (and to defend Rebel Girl’s honor), there are some utterly stellar instructors at California community colleges. A perfect example is novelist Jim Krusoe, who is revered as among the best creative writing instructors in the country, yet choses to teach at Santa Monica College.

  • Kudos to Jim Krusoe who put up with the likes of ME for years (really)…and to the folks who have come through CCs to get where they are. One of my first students finished up in grad school at Harvard while others have gone on to Berkeley and Brown and Stanford.

    Still, some of my finest students never transfered to any big name schools; some of them remain perpetual CC students, their lives unable to allow them to go anywhere else.

    I guess I was just responding to a certain pervasive tone, a kind of dismissive class attitude that gets under the skin of one such as me who lived in the projects, whose family got government support, who went to community college becasue I could get there on the damn bus — touchy, touchy, I know.

  • By the way – I know well the mission of the community college – I’ve been teaching at one 15 years. It’s an important mission – and as the years go by, increasingly impossible too.

    But there’s a bit of myth about just who sits in a CC classroom and why. It’s isn’t always based on skill level – there are many more factors that come into play. Same at the UC – where I have also taught.

    Okay – off of my soapbox!

  • I’m sure that CC’s are a very mixed bag, and I did understand Santa Monica’s is one of the best. (Yes, I know even it has a certain declasse rep, e.g., the Persian students at Beverly Hills High whose parents don’t believe in spending so much $ for a private 4-yr college, or who can’t get in, end up there in droves, so it’s somewhat derisively called “Beverly Hills High Extension by the Sea,” among other names.) But I’ve gone to some excellent lectures there, and the campus is terrific, comparable to some private 4-yr colleges. On the other hand, because it does let in virtually any student, unlike the Ivies or other very competitive schools, the student body lacks the same consistency. My pet peeve is people who like to assert they could have gotten into an Ivy college if only their parents were wealthy enough, if they didn’t have to work, if their own life choices had let them… Fact is, it’s hardest to get in if you’re middle class or above (just look at all the stress at places like Brentwood School and Harvard Westlake, as reality sets in by junior year that they’re competing against each other — I know one girl who followed her guidance counselor’s advice and left Brentwood for junior year, to go to a public high school, in order to improve her odds of getting into a school of her choice, and it worked.)

    I myself had to fight my parents’ attitude that state college was good enough if you’re looking at practical job benefits (true), and earn a scholarship. And as a volunteer high school admissions counselor, I’m sent smart ethnic kids from inner city schools to interview, because there are a surfeit of the smart prep school ones applying. (Some of them, especially Hispanics, have to go against convention, too, in daring to go far away from home; others, especially the Asians, can barely live down the shame if they don’t get in.) It takes a lot of personal will to get in if your parents are actually fighting you on it, and it’s very stressfully competitive if you’re one of the lucky ones whose parents have all the money in the world to help you.

    Once you’re in, the freshman load is very hard and demanding, because everyone else was the valedictorian, too; most kids don’t adjust until their sophomore year. Teaching kids used to being the best and fighting back tears over a B is part of the freshman game.

    So I know there are lots of smart students in CC who could have gotten into a top 4-year but didn’t bother to try. Many do end up earning a Bachelors. I’ve also known perpetual CC students who never find their calling. But there are those who fought their way into and through tough 4-yr colleges and are tired of being put down as little more than spoiled rich kids, “there but for the grace of God go I.” Sure, if only it were so easy…I have no patience for those who call anyone “white trash” because of their humble upbringing. (That’s a southern issue, not mine — though up north we still have an insular “Blue Book” group who traces lineage to the Mayflower, but they’re a tiny minority.)

    Actually, that self-made quality is something all three Dems share (Obama’s diplomat dad and teacher mom making him the most privileged of the three), and I think Huckabee and McCain (but they haven’t talked about it much.) We can sure see that being born with a silver foot in your mouth like Bush, hasn’t been a big asset. (He’s one of the very few who got into Yale because his daddy was already a powerful pol and Yalie himself.)

  • Oops, when I said Huck hasn’t talked up his own humble origins much I forgot all about that $99 J C Penney guitar that they bought with a year’s savings, and he wore his own fingers to the bone playing it…I haven’t paid much attn. to the other Republicans’ origins, but Romney’s dad was Gov of Michigan.

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