David Gregory disses Hillary, gets slammed by Chuck Todd

Gregory is a lightweight, tabloid, gotcha hack-journalist who belongs on CNN, a tabloid news channel.  

I was watching a repeat on MSNBC of Gregory, Brian Williams, Andrea Mitchell and Chuck Todd having a casual discussion about Hillary's speech.  Chuck Todd was going on about how great Hillary's speech was, and that it was the best speech she's ever given.  

David Gregory crassly responds by saying to the effect that Hillary is now going all out for Obama because she knows the best way for her to win in 2012 is if she's seen as campaigning hard for him.  Sigmund Gregory apparently has read Hillary's mind and knows that she's being a good sport only for selfish, self interested reasons.

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John McCain and topless women

Just read this story on the Huffington Post.  John McCain will be speaking at an event which will also include women wet-wrestling each other and a beauty pageant described as essentially a topless beauty pageant.

On Sunday, the McCain campaign announced that the Senator will participate in the Sturgis Rally 2008 at Buffalo Chip in South Dakota, an annual tribute to American veterans. The event is up the Arizona Republican's wheelhouse, attracting thousands of active duty and former servicemen, many who have a natural affinity towards the Senator. But it is hard not to notice the evocative, non-political sideshows that will literally surround McCain's speech. As the presumptive nominee takes the stage, the "Ringin' Wet & Wild" women's wrestling event will be taking place on the main amphitheater. Two hours before then , the "Miss Buffalo Chip Beauty Pageant - Bikinis on the Beach" will be staged on at a different venue. That affair is described by ESPN's Jim Caple as "essentially a topless beauty pageant. And occasionally bottomless, too."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/08/03 /topless-women-kid-rock-bi_n_116632.html

He's really endearing himself to democrats, feminists, and Hillary Clinton supporters, isn't he?  

But, this can't be all too surprising from a guy who has called his wife a trollop and ** and has publicly made jokes about rape, bestiality, the ugliness of Chelsea Clinton, and killing Iranians with cigarettes.

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Uniting for Change: Defeating McCain and Fear Trolling

I've been a strong critic of Hillary Clinton and her campaign during the primary campaign.  But, as Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama speak together in Unity, New Hampshire, I realize that the time for rehashing old wounds and hurts is absolutely, unequivocally, over.  It's time to unite for change and hope, it's time to unite to defeat John McCain and his fear trolling campaign.  

Fear.  That is all that John McCain has, and that is at the center of his campaign against Barack Obama.  I've been away on vacation for the past week and thus had a much needed break from intensely following the campaign.  In getting re-immersed in campaign news, it just struck me that, when considering McCain's campaign and his attacks on Obama, it amounts to nothing but fear-trolling.  

Fear-trolling is like concern-trolling, except that the troller makes no pretense to be a friend merely raising "concerns." Rather, the fear-troller is an opponent explicitly trying to instill unwarranted doubt and fear within a community.  That is what John McCain and the Republicans have been reduced to - being a party of fear-trollers trying to instill fear and doubt among Americans about Barack Obama and the democratic party.

Think about the memes that the McCain campaign, republicans, and Fox News have been using against Obama - comparing Obama to Nazi appeasers because he favors diplomacy; saying he's too young; implying he's an angry black nationalist married to an angry black woman who's bent on exacting revenge on "whitey"; implying that he has ties to terrorists, especially since he and his wife publicly engages in "terrorist fist bumps."

McCain knows that the only chance he has of winning is if voters go to the voting booths and vote based on fear, pessimism, and cynicism; if they vote based on lingering anger and resentment from the hard fought primary; if they vote based on their desire for the security of status quo over their desire for the uncertainty that change, even positive change, necessarily brings.  

We must not let McCain win.  A McCain victory would be nothing but a validation of the politics of fear and would portend at least four more years of rule by an ideologically bankrupt party.  And to prevent that from happening, to ensure a victory for hope, change, and democracy, and real opportunity, it is time, to paraphrase Hillary Clinton, to stop letting fear get in the way of moving forward.  It is time to get past our bickering about who did what to whom during the primary.  It is time to stop listening to those voices trying desperately to instill fears, doubts, and anxieties within us.  It is time to stop listening to those voices trying to divide and antagonize democrats and the American people.  It is time to come together, unite, and work side-by-side to elect our democratic nominee as President; to elect a filibuster proof democratic majority in the Senate; to elect a larger, more stable democratic majority in the House of Representatives.  

There are many things we will need to do, be called on to do, over the upcoming months.  But, a journey of 10,000 miles must begin with the first step.  I take one small step on that journey by pledging to no longer write diaries or comments rehashing old and tired debates about the primary, and by pledging to write diaries or comments focused on helping to defeat McCain and elect Obama as President.  

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Sexism as Convenient Truth: Rationalizing Hillary's Loss and the Politics of Sexism

The "Hillary lost because of sexism" meme simply will not die.    I keep seeing diary after diary rehashing this subject, with bloggers repeating the same arguments over and over again.  

In this diary, instead of engaging in a fruitless attempt to prove or disprove the role of sexism in Hillary's loss, I want to address the appeal and attraction of the sexism meme.  Why have Hillary supporters made sexism the primary reason for Hillary's loss?  My thoughts:

1. The "sexism destroyed Hillary" narrative has a lot of legs because it's a powerful and convenient tool to accomplish one fundamental goal - to continue to attack the legitimacy of Obama's victory over Clinton.  

2. Those who keep using sexism to explain Hillary's defeat simply have not yet been able to accept the fact that she lost the race and that the primary race is over.  Finished.  Kaput.  Done.  It's as if in writing these "Sexists destroyed Hillary!!" diaries, they are continuing to make the case to superdelegates that they should realize that Obama won unfairly and switch their votes to Hillary.      

3. Sexism has been seized as the "true" cause of Hillary's defeat because it imbues the continuing ugly attacks on the legitimacy of Obama's victory with a false sense of moral superiority.  It also has more resonance than the FL/MI "disenfranchisement" meme and the "caucuses are undemocratic" meme.  Notice that we don't see many diaries raising those issues anymore.  

4. The sexism charge is about creating scapegoats for Hillary's defeat.  Most people analyzing what went wrong with Hillary's campaign point mostly to the mistakes Hillary and her campaign made.  Except for Clinton supporters.  For them, Hillary and the way she managed her campaign are beyond reproach; she did nothing wrong.  She lost because Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann, MSNBC, Maureen Dowd, the NY Times, Tim Russert, et al, sexists all, had it in for Hillary.

5. The sexism charge is a way of denying and obfuscating the significant role race/racism played during the primary.  Obama's race did not matter.  Ultimately, Obama benefited because of his gender.  Actually, those that argue Obama's race did matter contend, a la Geraldine Ferraro, that Obama doubly benefited from being both male and black.  Hence, all these posts noting all those positive stories about Obama in comparison to Clinton, as proof that the media was biased in favor of the black man.  

6. People jumping on the sexism charge have done so only as it relates to Hillary Clinton.  They don't have very much interest in discussing sexism when it has to do with Michelle Obama, for example.  These very same people writing diary after diary talking about sexism in relation to why Hillary lost have written few, if any, diaries about sexism and anyone else but Hillary.

7. Clintonites who see KO and Chris Matthews as sexism personified oddly ignore the person whose sexism probably had the biggest impact on Hillary's campaign - that would be the sexist statements and antics by Bill Clinton, both past and present.  That guy almost single-handedly brought down his wife's campaign, and yet, I don't think I've seen a single diary by a Clintonite critically examining Bill's role in Hillary's defeat.  

Bill Clinton should be public enemy number one for those who contend sexism defeated Hillary, yet he's getting a total pass.  I'm not totally sure why, but my guess is that as long as Hillary is married to Bill, any attack on Bill amounts to an attack on Hillary's judgment, and so that can't be done.  

8.  Hillary hate gets conveniently conflated with and reduced to misogyny.  People can't or refuse to accept the very simple concept that some people may hate Hillary because she's Hillary Clinton, not because she's a woman.  It would be just as silly to say that all those people who hate Obama must therefore be racists.

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Hillary Clinton's Masterful Speech

I was thoroughly impressed with Hillary Clinton's speech today.  It was brilliant, moving, gracious, honest, and from the heart.  This speech could be the one that defines Hillary Clinton from this point forward.  It had to be one of the most difficult speeches she's ever had to give, needing to create a perfect balance between honoring her own campaign and endorsing Barack Obama.

She not only achieved that balance, she did so brilliantly and eloquently.  The parts of her speech that were very effective for me include:

1. Recognizing that her campaign shattered the ultimately glass ceiling for women in America, even without actually winning the nomination and the presidency.  I loved the line that her campaign will from now on make it unremarkable if a woman or a racial minority comes close to winning the democratic nomination or if a woman is viewed as qualified to be commander in chief.

2. Her tying the historic nature of her candidacy with the historic nature of Obama's candidacy as the first African American presidential nominee.  

3. Her emphasis on the importance of electing Obama, a democrat, to the White House.  I loved the way she reminded all of us that we've only had 3 democratic presidencies elected in the past 10 elections (40 years!), and Bill Clinton won 2 of those.  She brilliantly accomplished three things simultaneously be bringing up this point: she reminding us of the importance of the race, recognizing and honoring Bill Clinton, and also connecting Bill Clinton's presidency to Obama's presidential candidacy.  Very impressive.

There was just so much conviction and passion in her speech today, it was a wonderful end to the primary race, and a stirring beginning to the general election race.  Listening to the speech, I felt proud of being a democrat, and proud to have Hillary Clinton as one of our party's leaders.  

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"How Do We Beat the B***?" Sexism and McCain

There is no doubt that sexism has been a part of this campaign, and McCain in his speech on Tuesday tried to appeal to angry democratic women upset with the way they believe Hillary Clinton and her female supporter have been treated in the campaign.  

Does McCain really care about fighting sexism and working to protect women's rights?  Is the Republican party a strong advocate of women's rights and equality?  Well, check out the following videos of McCain from earlier this year, videos that only now are coming back to the surface.  

In this link, John McCain responds to a female republican supporter asking him, "How do we beat the bitch?" Listen carefully to a follow-up response by another supporter and then McCain's response.  

http://tpmelectioncentral.talkingpointsm emo.com/2007/11/full_video_mccain_says_s upporters_bitch_query_about_hillary_is_a n_excellent_question.php

Also, check out a video clip that Jedreports made juxtaposing McCain's recent speech commending Hillary Clinton while his earlier response to the "how do we beat the b**" question.

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2008/6/6/1 73148/2461/596/531297

The clip is the first comment in the diary.  For your amusement, you should also check out Jed's clip of McCain making a bizarre statement about dehydrated babies and bottled hot water.  I kid you not.  

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Hillary's speech last night as a clever way to unify the party

I've been a very strong critic of Hillary Clinton's campaign tactics, and I was very dismayed by what I heard from her last night.  

Yet, as I see the events unfold today, I want to provide a more generous, positive interpretation of what Hillary is doing and what she really wants.  

Here's my theory - she gave her "victory speech" last night, raised the issue of being VP, threatened to use her 18 million supporters as a bargaining chip, as a clever way to unify rather than divide the party.  She's basically taking one for the team.

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Michelle Obama: "Don't Ever Make Decisions Out of Fear"

There's a great article on Huffington Post by an author talking about her experiences attending a fundraiser for Obama where Michelle was the featured speaker.  The fundraiser took place in Phoenix, Arizona, and was attended mostly by women.  

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dawn-teo/m ichelle-obama-in-phoenix_b_103924.html

The author, Dawn Teo, gives a very moving account of Michelle's speech and her interaction with the audience.  Below I've posted a portion of the article, where the author describes what happened when an emotionally distraught audience member asked Michelle a very sensitive question.  

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McCain: "I will never surrender in Iraq, my friends!"

I just a video clip of McCain that made me ill.  It was on Hardball, and they showed a clip of McCain talking at the Denver University.  There were some war protesters in the crowd, and this is how McCain responded:

"I will never surrender in Iraq, my friends, I will never surrender."

He was smiling broadly as he said this to thunderous applause.  

Okay, there's been a lot of squabbling going on between Obama and Clinton supporters in the waning moments of democratic primaries, but, when I saw that clip, it just further emphasized how much the democratic party must unify in order to make sure that Bush-McCain doesn't take office and be able to advance their reckless, dangerous, and cowboy-maverick foreign policies.  

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Hillary's MI/FL plan deprives voters of due process of law

Hillary Clinton contends that her Florida and Michigan plans are about protecting voting rights of the people who voted in those elections.  The problem is, however, her plan vindicates the voting rights of certain voters by grossly violating the fundamental constitutional right to due process of law.

The Due Process Clause states that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.  Due process is ultimately about ensuring a fair process and about ensuring that governments adhere to the rule of law.  

The right to due process of law is one of the most fundamental rights protected by the U.S. Constitution.  It is so important that it's a right that is explicitly protected in TWO amendments.  The 5th Amendment requires the federal government to protect an individual's right to due process of law, while the 14th Amendment requires state and local governments to protect an individual's right to due process of law.  

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