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Tylergal
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« on: June 21, 2008, 12:35:02 PM »

June 20, 2008

The Two Obamas


God, Republicans are saps. They think that they’re running against some academic liberal who wouldn’t wear flag pins on his lapel, whose wife isn’t proud of America and who went to some liberationist church where the pastor damned his own country. They think they’re running against some naïve university-town dreamer, the second coming of Adlai Stevenson.

But as recent weeks have made clear, Barack Obama is the most split-personality politician in the country today. On the one hand, there is Dr. Barack, the high-minded, Niebuhr-quoting speechifier who spent this past winter thrilling the Scarlett Johansson set and feeling the fierce urgency of now. But then on the other side, there’s Fast Eddie Obama, the promise-breaking, tough-minded Chicago pol who’d throw you under the truck for votes.

This guy is the whole Chicago package: an idealistic, lakefront liberal fronting a sharp-elbowed machine operator. He’s the only politician of our lifetime who is underestimated because he’s too intelligent. He speaks so calmly and polysyllabically that people fail to appreciate the Machiavellian ambition inside.

But he’s been giving us an education, for anybody who cares to pay attention. Just try to imagine Mister Rogers playing the agent Ari in “Entourage” and it all falls into place.

Back when he was in the Illinois State Senate, Dr. Barack could have taken positions on politically uncomfortable issues. But Fast Eddie Obama voted “present” nearly 130 times. From time to time, he threw his voting power under the truck.

Dr. Barack said he could no more disown the Rev. Jeremiah Wright than disown his own grandmother. Then the political costs of Rev. Wright escalated and Fast Eddie Obama threw Wright under the truck.

Dr. Barack could have been a workhorse senator. But primary candidates don’t do tough votes, so Fast Eddie Obama threw the workhorse duties under the truck.

Dr. Barack could have changed the way presidential campaigning works. John McCain offered to have a series of extended town-hall meetings around the country. But favored candidates don’t go in for unscripted free-range conversations. Fast Eddie Obama threw the new-politics mantra under the truck.

And then on Thursday, Fast Eddie Obama had his finest hour. Barack Obama has worked on political reform more than any other issue. He aspires to be to political reform what Bono is to fighting disease in Africa. He’s spent much of his career talking about how much he believes in public financing. In January 2007, he told Larry King that the public-financing system works. In February 2007, he challenged Republicans to limit their spending and vowed to do so along with them if he were the nominee. In February 2008, he said he would aggressively pursue spending limits. He answered a Midwest Democracy Network questionnaire by reminding everyone that he has been a longtime advocate of the public-financing system.

But Thursday, at the first breath of political inconvenience, Fast Eddie Obama threw public financing under the truck. In so doing, he probably dealt a death-blow to the cause of campaign-finance reform. And the only thing that changed between Thursday and when he lauded the system is that Obama’s got more money now.

And Fast Eddie Obama didn’t just sell out the primary cause of his life. He did it with style. He did it with a video so risibly insincere that somewhere down in the shadow world, Lee Atwater is gaping and applauding. Obama blamed the (so far marginal) Republican 527s. He claimed that private donations are really public financing. He made a cut-throat political calculation seem like Mother Teresa’s final steps to sainthood.

The media and the activists won’t care (they were only interested in campaign-finance reform only when the Republicans had more money). Meanwhile, Obama’s money is forever. He’s got an army of small donors and a phalanx of big money bundlers, including, according to The Washington Post, Kenneth Griffin of the Citadel Investment Group; Kirk Wager, a Florida trial lawyer; James Crown, a director of General Dynamics; and Neil Bluhm, a hotel, office and casino developer.

I have to admit, I’m ambivalent watching all this. On the one hand, Obama did sell out the primary cause of his professional life, all for a tiny political advantage. If he’ll sell that out, what won’t he sell out? On the other hand, global affairs ain’t beanbag. If we’re going to have a president who is going to go toe to toe with the likes of Vladimir Putin, maybe it is better that he should have a ruthlessly opportunist Fast Eddie Obama lurking inside.

All I know for sure is that this guy is no liberal goo-goo. Republicans keep calling him naïve. But naïve is the last word I’d use to describe Barack Obama. He’s the most effectively political creature we’ve seen in decades. Even Bill Clinton wasn’t smart enough to succeed in politics by pretending to renounce politics.

David Brooks NYTIMES
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nonesuche
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« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2008, 12:54:38 PM »

Tyler I am sad to even have to write this but the "Fast Eddie Obama" is so terribly vivid in this campaign. THIS piece is written by a 'thinking' analyst who is tracking that nitty gritty granular execution of the details of record in Obama's political execution as a senator. It's tough to do that, to drill down and really examine the documentation trail but if you have the commitment to do it - it reaps the reality.

Perhaps what so many voters admire is Obama's ability to be a playa?

I have to wonder.......and I refuse to hand my country and future into the hands of another smooth operator.

 

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Tylergal
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« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2008, 01:40:21 PM »

None, what I fear is that this is just a momentary hiatus from the usual lip-smacking, leg-tingling praise of the "Messiah."

David Brooks is known to be a nitty-gritty type analyst who does not follow Democrats or Republicans but is sober-minded in his assessments, the reason the NYTimes calls him a conservative, but I have seen him excoriate as many conservatives as liberals.  The problem is that the mainstream media, who by its own admission, is 97% liberal, will find "racism" or "prejudice" in any decent analysis of Obama, because he reminds them of a Lebanese Kahil Gibran, who lived in the United States, which he made his home during the last twenty years of his life.

But, Obama is no Gibran.  Obama is overly educated by his professors at Harvard and undereducated in world history and the way this country works.  His education abroad gave him no understanding of how this country came to be and the recent fascination with all things unamerican, will unfortunately, pivot him into the halls of power of the freeworld where he can undermine all this country has worked and died for over the centuries.

It can be the best or the worst thing that has happened to our country ever.  If he is reigned in by his puppetmaster, it can serve as a mirror into his empty soul so the voters and politicians of this country see what a horrible mistake we made and we shall correct it, but if he is allowed free reign by the puppetmasters it can bring about anarchy and destruction, unlike this country and world has ever witnessed.

I'll believe that the MSM is actually going to begin seriously analyzing and listening to Barack Obama when they see their own fortunes sinking. Remember, they like all his socialism and effete pacifism as they share his basic philosophies that lawyers are the only defense against crime and war, that there is no place in a society where males have been emasculinated and prefer hanging out on the "down low" than with the guys at the game.

It's not always easy to interpret underlying messages, but if you watched Obama bowl and listen to his airy talk, it would be foolish to claim that he is more than a representative of his own self-indulgent arrogance.  My question is how did he ever get through Harvard without a paper trail?  We are told that he never wrote a paper at Harvard.  How can that be?  There are far more questions out there than answers but I think the Reverend Wright knows Obama's soul when he says, "he's nothing but a politician." 
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Auntiem
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« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2008, 06:34:40 PM »

    WOW!!!!  Tyler, in no way would I attempt to follow such eloquence!!!   You are not only well-educated in regards to the short history of this man called Obama, but you SEE into what he is saying.

     Let's hope that the majority of Americans, when they go to the polls in November, will NOT vote for him out of FEAR, Gut Feelings or that they, like you SEE into this man's words and actions and understand his agenda!!!
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crazybabyborg
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« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2008, 11:49:44 PM »

Great post, Tyler! The only thing I would add is to this section:

Dr. Barack could have changed the way presidential campaigning works. John McCain offered to have a series of extended town-hall meetings around the country. But favored candidates don’t go in for unscripted free-range conversations. Fast Eddie Obama threw the new-politics mantra under the truck.

Anyone remember Obama boistering about "looking forward to debating the Iraq war with McCain, and how he'd take it on anytime, anywhere?"
Uh-hum.............I believe he's been invited to 10 such town hall meetings where the PEOPLE could ask what is on their minds, not journalists looking for a "gotcha" to use as a soundbite, for either candidate. This election is about US and we should be asking what's on our minds. Just maybe the candidates could learn what's important to the constituancy they want to represent!

John McCain will be there................10 times. Obama has agreed to one, on July 4th when virtually no one will be around to watch it. Now, that's a candidate who "cares" about us, huh?
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nonesuche
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« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2008, 12:04:11 AM »

Auntiem-

Tyler has such an expansive knowledge of politics and her emails sharing that knowledge with me, have been so enlightening. She demonstrates the complexities and also the not just national but also global strategic overview, which so often I can't encompass readily.

CBB - Obama could never stand up to the granularity of having to explain himself or detail his positions in a series of Town Halls - even MSM admits this is the reality. I do plan to watch the one on the 4th and I'm predicting even not being a McCain fan, that Obama will be TOAST.

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