Dr. J.’s Short Takes: Palin; Campaign Racism; Guilt by Association; David Brooks

by Steven Jonas, MD
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
Buzzflash.com
October 17, 2008

Palin’s Debate Performance: Where Was the Box?

Palin’s debate performance has been much discussed. One element not noticed was the technological advances made by Republican debate managers since 2004. Bush’s rectangular control box was clearly visible. (Too bad Kerry didn’t ask him about it, but he was much too much of a “gentleman” to do so. Who was it who said “nice guys finish last?” [Actually is was the great Leo Durocher, who managed to manage both the Brooklyn Dodgers and the New York Giants in the glory days of New York baseball, 1941-1957, before they both deserted us for California.]) At any rate, they obviously are now masters of miniaturization. But still one wonders just where they hid the Palin control box.

Guilt by Association: What a Net it Casts

As yes, guilt by association. Ain’t it just great? Not only is Obama a commie/liberal/terrorist for “associating” (even slightly, as was the case) with Bill Ayres on a community organization board of directors. But so, obviously, are: all of his fellow Board members (some of whom are — oh no — prominent Republicans); the University of Illinois, which had the audacity to make Ayres a full professor with tenure; the publishers of every one of Prof. Ayres’ 15 books; and Mayor Richard Daley and the rest of the group of Chicago industrialists and political leaders who all say that Prof. Ayres is a fine fellow. It’s guilt by association for ALL of them, not just Obama, dontchaknow. And by golly, let’s not forget who it was who first put Bill Ayres’ name into the political hopper. None other than good ol’ Hillary Rodham Clinton, dontchaknow.

Who is Running Next Time for the Republicans?

Newt Gingrich, et al just love Sarah Palin. That is even though Newt, Jeb Bush, Mitt Romney, Rudy Giuliani, maybe even Lindsey Graham, and who knows who else among her current loyal supporters, whether she wins or loses this time around, will be running against her for the Republican nomination in 2012 whether she gets to the Presidency before then or not. Surprised, especially if the ticket wins this time and Palin is president by 2012 (which she would likely be given the state of McCain’s physical and mental health)? Don’t be. At the same time, just think where Palin would be had not Bill Kristol gone on that fateful Alaska cruise in 2007 and discovered her, as if she were some movie starlet. Oh yes, there was one U.S. Vice President who succeed to the Presidency upon the death of the man he was elected with who was denied his party’s nomination at the next election: Chester Alan Arthur. So Palin might be the second. Or might not.

The Scariest Thing About Sarah Palin’s Audiences

Sarah Palin is now speaking only to pre-selected Republican audiences. The cheers that they give her are spine-chilling for anyone who has watched movies of 1930s mass rallies. But the scariest thing about the responses to her declamations is not the declamations themselves. After all, she does say outrageous things with great frequency, and is fast becoming a mistress of the Big Lie technique (viz. her response to the findings of the “Troopergate” investigation: “I was cleared of any wrongdoing”). The scariest thing is that there are apparently a not insignificant number of such hate-screamers.

Poor David Brooks

David Brooks was The New York Times resident right-winger before they brought on Bill Kristol (who actually makes Brooks appear to be reasonable [even if he isn’t]). Brooks obviously thinks that McCain will lose (although given the Republican Election Theft Machine, now getting into full-function mode, that is no means certain). In a recent article (“The Class War Before Palin” The New York Times, October 9, 2008), he attacks Republican anti-intellectualism. Of course anti-intellectualism is never going to lose pride of place in the Republican Party regardless of what the dwindling number of pseudo-serious Republicans such as Brooks say. It is only with an uninformed electorate that they can win. So, Dave, you’ll have to try something else to try to assure The Times’ readership that if Obama wins, some people will think that you still have some relevance.

Who Are the Racists? McCain: “Not us”

And finally, after trying to make nice on October 10 about the vicious, planned, turn his campaign took just a week before, on October 13, there was this item on AOL: “Republican John McCain vowed Sunday to ‘whip Democratic rival Barack Obama’s “you-know-what” ‘ when the two presidential candidates meet Wednesday in their final televised debate” (Beth Fouhy, AP/AOL, Arlington, VA, 10-13-08 [and you should see the pro-McCain racist comments among the 1,300 or so that were already up by the time I noticed the item. Oy yoy yoy]). Oh dear. I guess that ol’ John just never heard of lynch mobs and what they did to “uppity” African-Americans (as Obama has been characterized by numerous Republican operatives for months now) before they burned or hung them (that is whipped their “you-know-whats”). The apology this time, if it ever does come, ought to be a doozy. In the meantime I sent the following entry in to the People for the American Way’s current “Haiku contest” referencing McCain/Palin:

“Racist we’re not and
we will whup the ass of any
man who says we are.”

Steven Jonas, MD, MPH is a Professor of Preventive Medicine at Stony Brook University (NY) and a www.TPJmagazine.us Contributing Author; a regular Columnist for BuzzFlash; a Special Contributing Editor for Cyrano’s Journal Online; a Contributing Columnist for the Project for the Old American Century, POAC; and a Featured Writer for Dandelion Salad https://dandelionsalad.wordpress.com/.

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