Is Obama A Rejection Of "Clintonism?"

Last night Rachel Maddow said that Obama is a rejection of Clintonism. And I wondered, if that is so, then isn't that an argument for Clinton supporters to NOT vote for Obama? To not get over it? After all, if that were true, then the PUMAs would have a point, wouldn't they?

The fact is this is mindless nonsense from Rachel Maddow. Barack Obama is Clintonism Redux. Obama's Post-Partisan Unity Schtick is merely Clinton's 1990s Third Way for the 21st Century. Obama's victory is actually victory for triangulation. But pundit are mindless and they say and do anything to feed their freak show narratives. And Rachel Maddow is certainly among the worst at that.

How about Obama as the new William Jennings Bryan? I kid you not. That is what the Quinnipiac pollster Peter Brown asserts:

History, we are told, often repeats itself. Thatís why itís fitting that the Democrats will nominate Barack Obama for president in Denver tomorrow night, and not Hillary Clinton.

Exactly 100 years ago the Democrats last met in the Mile High City and nominated the Barack Obama of that era for president. His name was William Jennings Bryan and he moved the Democratic Party from a more conservative post-Civil War bent into a populist direction that eventually led to Franklin Rooseveltís New Deal and Lyndon Johnsonís Great Society.

Obamaís nomination over Clinton represents more than a personal rejection of her and her husband by the party they brought out of the presidential wilderness in 1992. It is a repudiation of how Bill Clinton remade the Democratic Party.

This is truly one of the stupidest pieces of punditry I have seen yet. And that is really saying something. First of all, in 2008, as Brown himself notes, William Jennings Bryan was being nominated as the Democratic nominee for the THIRD TIME. He made his famous "Cross of Gold" speech at the 1896 Convention, which led to his surprise nomination, a true populist revolt. Bryan was nominated again in 1900.

Obama was backed by major segments of the DC Establishment of the Democratic Party, most notably by the Democratic Giant Ted Kennedy. To compare Obama to Bryan in terms of revolution in the party is just absurd.

Further, to call Obama a populist is to strain credulity to the breaking point. Does Peter Brown even know what populism means? And to compare Bryan's brand of agrarian small town populism to Obama is just anti-historical. If you define it as working class populism, as we most often think of the term, then Obama is the anti-populist of this campaign.

In the end, we see yet again how thoroughly stupid, anti-factual and anti-historical the punditocracy is. They, in the words of Joe Biden, literally seem to take Know-Nothingism (another type of populism that one assumes Brown does not think Obama represent) to a new level.

Barack Obama, by the thinnest of margins, toppled the favorite to win the Democratic nomination. It has happened before. George McGovern and Jimmy Carter did it. It takes a fool to equate Barack Obama to William Jennings Bryan.

It also takes a fool to think Obama signals the defeat of Clintonism. It only is a defeat of "Clintonism" in the Freak Show Media personality sense. Ideologically, "Clintonism" triumphed with Obama's victory.

There are other factual errors in Brown's piece. For example he sees Obama's tax policy as a rejection of "Clintonism." In fact, it is a call for the exact tax policy Bill Clinton enacted in 1993. And it goes on from there.

But I can not get past the facile and absurd idea that Obama represents a return of Bryanism. Dennis Kucinich winning the nomination would have been the triumph of Bryanism. Obama? Sorry, he is Clintonism Redux.

By Big Tent Democrat, speaking for me only

< Wednesday Late Afternoon Open Thread | Wednesday Night Convention Open Thread >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    Not to Mention (5.00 / 6) (#2)
    by BDB on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:10:09 PM EST
    William Jennings Bryan lost.  Repeatedly.  But then he was a Democrat.

    I have seen 1896 parallels, however (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by Cream City on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:24:46 PM EST
    (defending comments I've made here before on it).

    Dems picked a young candidate known as The Great Orator, who was picked in part upon expectations that he would Win the West.  

    And he lost to the Republican's War Veteran (and Shill for Corporate Interests).  Plus, it was when the country was in the midst of a terrible economic depression.

    Just goes to show there always are parallels to be found in history, because there really is nothing new under the sun in this human comedy -- in which we are but bit players brought on stage for the primaries and then tossed under the . . . covered wagon then, the bus now.  No diff.:-)


    Under the train? (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by Salo on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:40:59 PM EST
    toot toot.

    That's a chilling parallel.


    BTD, for once I'm not sure I agree w you (none / 0) (#155)
    by RedSox04 on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 10:06:17 AM EST
    Obama himself has rejected the Clintons.  And Clinton was not post-partisan, but was the epitome of partisanship.  His triangulation strategy came about in response to the Republican takeover of Congress, and is best seen as a way to coopt the GOP and blunt their excesses (adopting parts of their agenda out of necessity).

    In other words, I think Clinton is best viewed as a partisan pragmatist, who triangulated out of political necessity.

    On the other hand, Obama has repeatedly shown that he is a post-partisan idealist, who triangulates as a matter of principle.  If you adopt this worldview of Obama, his refusal to enunciate strong policy positions (and his lack of remorse or even acknowledgement of significant reversals of policy) makes more sense.  His "ideals", his "change", his "hope" lies in the idea of being post-partisan and cooperative, and working with Republicans to find consensus solutions, rather than in the specifics of the solutions themselves.

    This is why for those of us who believe that the specifics of the solutions matter, it is so damned hard to vote for Obama.


    Also, Bryan was a populist (none / 0) (#156)
    by RedSox04 on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 10:10:28 AM EST
    Obama has repeatedly rejected populism as "old politics" or part of the "old political divisions of the past".

    It should be noted, though (none / 0) (#39)
    by BrianJ on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:26:03 PM EST
    That only two Democrats won between the Civil War and the Great Depression-  Grover Cleveland and Woodrow Wilson, twice each.  Cleveland's 1884 win and Wilson's 1916 win depended on Florida 2000-esque victory margins, while Wilson's win in 1912 came from divided opposition.

    Bryan really wasn't any worse than most Democratic nominees of the time, and at least he made it clear where he stood and had influence on public policy during that time.  If OBama loses, however, on November 5th there will be nothing left of his campaign but excess bumper stickers.


    That implies (none / 0) (#71)
    by 0 politico on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:37:43 PM EST
    we will have to wait several election cycles for a real leader to lead the Democratic Party out of the electoral wilderness...

    As a gay woman (5.00 / 8) (#3)
    by lisadawn82 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:10:10 PM EST
    When I first discovered Rachel Maddow on AA radio I was thrilled.  Not so much now.  Too many months of Hillary hate have done me in.  

    BTW, thanks Rachel for making it so easy for me not to vote for Senator Obama.  

    Again, the Dems may win the argument but lose the election.  Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is insane.  The DNC is off their rocker.

    Maddow who? (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by Rashomon66 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:26:05 PM EST
    Why are you letting Rachel Maddow decide who do or don't you vote for? I can see being angry at her views. But she does not represent anything but herself and maybe MSNBC. Pundits say all kinds of stupid things.

    I'm not (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by lisadawn82 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:31:47 PM EST
    I rejected Senator Obama long ago because his support of the Cheney energy bill demonstrated to me that he was just another corporate Democrat.  His Cheney EnFISA vote was just the icing on the cake when it came to my opinion of him.

    When he went to golf in Hawii for a week instead of seriously addressing the Russion/Georgian crisis I went ballistic.


    Sigh, I hate typo's (none / 0) (#59)
    by lisadawn82 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:33:33 PM EST
    Cheney EnFISA vote = FISA vote
    Hawii= Hawaii

    Yeah but (none / 0) (#90)
    by Rashomon66 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:46:22 PM EST
    Obama isn't president yet. How could he do anything about the Russia Georgia conflict and not be seen as being presumptuous? Even Congress was on vacation then. No one except Biden did anything about it and that is because of his foreign relations position.

    Eh (none / 0) (#80)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:42:06 PM EST
    I don't fault him for going on vacation. He's got two little kids who hadn't seen him in months. And his gazillion year old grandma lives there, and can't travel to the mainland.

    It would have been better if he'd had a somewhat higher profile while he was away, however.  And McCain's "leadership" on the issue didn't make me all warm and fuzzy.


    With so many working parents (5.00 / 4) (#117)
    by Grace on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:08:05 PM EST
    in this country who have children and other family responsibilities, this type of decision has to be made on a regular basis.  

    I'm sorry, but when work needs you, you have to work -- that is, if you really want the job.

    Being President isn't a part time job.  Candidates applying for it need to act like they really want it.      


    If the jobs too inconvient then don't campaign (5.00 / 2) (#128)
    by lisadawn82 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:35:24 PM EST
    or it.

    He's got two little kids who hadn't seen him in months. And his gazillion year old grandma lives there, and can't travel to the mainland.

    This is his choice to run for President.  It's a hard job that means your family becomes second choice.  That includes running for the position.  That's the way it is.  


    I've worked from vacations (none / 0) (#139)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:26:21 PM EST
    all my professional life.  I am a full time working mother, and I never missed a vacation or a gymnastics meet or a school recital. But I've taken conference calls and written briefs from resorts all over the world.  And I'm pretty sure that Obama was working on his vacation too. That's not what they take pictures of.  They take pictures of you walking on the beach with your cute little daughters.

    I didn't like his initial response to the Georgia crisis, but it wasn't the result of being on vacation.  And McCain's was scary.


    The pundits of MSNBC (5.00 / 4) (#106)
    by Jjc2008 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:54:04 PM EST
    campaigned FOR OBAMA and trashed Hillary with lies, spin and sexism.

    Obama (none / 0) (#66)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:36:51 PM EST
    has all kinds of supporters that are just as bad as she is if not worse. Remember Obama's rules are that what any supporter or surrogate says is the same as it coming from the candidates mouth.

    Unclear on meaning (none / 0) (#82)
    by Rashomon66 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:42:45 PM EST
    Not sure what you mean. Are you saying that if jerks or people with opinions you don't like support a candidate then the candidate must be just like those who support them? If so, then I guarantee you that there would never be a reason to ever vote again for anyone. Lots of people like politicians. Some of those people may be idiots.

    No (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:45:57 PM EST
    Obama's campaign has explicitly stated that anything done by a supporter or a surrogate is representative of the candidate.

    See, Sheheen, Billy.


    Any links? (none / 0) (#94)
    by Rashomon66 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:48:57 PM EST
    You'll have to provide me a link to this. You are saying Obama's campaign said anything done by a supporter is representative. 'Anything' is a definitive word.

    I'll say it (5.00 / 4) (#121)
    by MichaelGale on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:19:02 PM EST
     Clyburn, SC is a supporter of Obama and he is a
    angry, vitriolic human being.

    Jesse Jackson, Jr is an ADVISER to Obama and he is an angry, lying human being.

    Claire McCasskill is a big supported and nanny to Barack Obama and she is an embarrassment to MO and women.

    Shall I continue?


    It was like (none / 0) (#20)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:16:52 PM EST

    They reeled us in and then really went to work.

    I've always heard that sports guys weren't all that democratic.  Jock itch destroyed brain cells, no doubt.

    I'm sorry I ever thought Olbermann had anything to offer.  His rantings about Bush never changed a darn thing, of course.

    Hello, President McCain?


    Olbermann made criticism of bush OK (5.00 / 1) (#76)
    by pluege on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:40:56 PM EST
    His rantings about Bush never changed a darn thing, of course.

    As much as I detest Olbermann now and never listen to him for the way he treated HRC, I don't agree that his bush rantings never changed anything. He made it OK for MSM personalities to criticize bush. Until he criticized bush in prime time, bush and everyone attached to him were of limits; there was literally no criticism of note prior to that.


    That's true (none / 0) (#84)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:43:10 PM EST
    but then he went off his meds.

    Maddow is disappointing, but still better than he is.

    As for Tweety, there. are. no. words.


    KO (none / 0) (#140)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:27:54 PM EST
    started before Andersen Cooper, IIRC. Before the 2004 election. Katrina was afterwards.

    Well said! (none / 0) (#144)
    by SueBonnetSue on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 10:54:45 PM EST
    I can't decide which of MSNBC talking heads is the most repugnant, but Rachel Maddow is one of my top picks.  Her prejudices are apparent every time she opens her mouth.   I cannot watch that channel.  

    Clinton hate from the media and others may (5.00 / 5) (#4)
    by Teresa on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:10:19 PM EST
    cost Obama the election. The voters themselves, we would have elected Hillary. He is a media darling, BTD, but I think we need to measure in the anti-media vote that Obama will pay the price for. Not that the party has helped either.

    could you edit in a working ... (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Salo on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:10:23 PM EST
    ...definition of Clintonism.

    It's not like Obama is some type of thoroughbred liberal stallion. A big part of his appeal initially was his willingness to echo things the GOp were saying.

    Is she deluded enough to think Obama is a rejection of Clinton's more centrist policy interests?

    Which Clinton? (5.00 / 6) (#19)
    by myiq2xu on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:16:51 PM EST
    There are two, and they aren't identical.

    That's a point I made (5.00 / 3) (#38)
    by Salo on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:26:00 PM EST
    in  another post.  I think she exhibited something different from Bill's somewhat "lazy" centrism. he wanted a second term. she'd have been happy to cram UHC through and let teh chips fall.

    obama will be judged on longevity of offcie rather than quality of reform.


    Turn about is fair play because (5.00 / 5) (#6)
    by leis on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:10:43 PM EST
    I think lots of Clintonites are going to reject Obamanism.

    They are nearly identical in policy (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Salo on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:16:40 PM EST
    Howvere Hillary is different from Bill...she might have been more determined to get UHC done than her old man--he seems to value a second term more than UHC. Just as I expect Obama will.

    My take is he values a first term more than any (5.00 / 2) (#28)
    by leis on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:21:27 PM EST
    Democratic principles or values.

    HRC doesn't push the (5.00 / 2) (#133)
    by Xanthe on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:50:08 PM EST
    religious agenda though - that continues to bother me.  And I go to mass a few times a week -but it troubles me.  

    And her healthcare plan is different - more inclusive -

    Healthcare - sigh - always the bridesmaid.


    listening to Maddow can cause indigestion (5.00 / 8) (#8)
    by DandyTIger on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:11:19 PM EST
    among other health problems. She can cause your radio to be thrown across the room. Or the TV when she's on it to be broken by flying objects. I don't recommend it. Think of the children for g*ds sake.

    Considering how much use (5.00 / 4) (#14)
    by JavaCityPal on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:15:23 PM EST
    my mute button has gotten since Monday, I'm thinking my association with the current democratic party members is about to end. The media is no longer a source for valid information, or unbiased reporting. Are they even teaching solid, investigative journalism in college these days?

    Yeh, but actually for some time now (5.00 / 3) (#47)
    by Cream City on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:30:19 PM EST
    and sensibly so with the state of the newspaper endustry, numbers are way down in such courses and sequences.  More are in broadcast media, of course, but they aren't that interested in investigative journalism, as reporting results of such work takes more than a 90-second soundbyte.

    For some time now, the huge enrollments -- because the far bigger job market and pay -- has been in, wait for it, strategic communication aka advertising, marketing, and public relations.

    And the hottest new thing is media convergence -- which is not about content but about technology.  What the job market wants are whizbang techie kids who can podcast and make websites that look like . . . well, the Dem convention stage.  The job market is not good for good reporters now.  

    There still are some hungry journalist types, bless them, at the top of their classes.  But they have to worry so much more now about going hungry, period.  So they go where the jobs are.


    Plus, please note that (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by Cream City on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:32:00 PM EST
    many of the tv on-air types and pundits were not in journalism schools.  They were in law schools. . . .

    Yes, that I did know (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by JavaCityPal on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:49:30 PM EST
    Russert, Matthews, Abrams, and on and on. I just don't consider any of those pundits to be journalists. They don't draw their information from an ability to ferret out truth from anything. I doubt they have ever even experienced a situation where they didn't, couldn't, wouldn't state their sources.

    I wonder if the brilliant minds of journalism today were to start their own publication, would there even be enough of a market for it that would allow it to survive?


    Rachel Maddow (5.00 / 3) (#114)
    by Jjc2008 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:04:17 PM EST
    disappointingly is all about Rachel Maddow. Like her colleagues, she likes have her ego stroked.  She has been totally unfair and unreasonable when it comes to Hillary Clinton.

    HUGE disgust is what I feel when she is on. I despise her more than Matthews.  I get him...he is an egotistical old misogynistic man.
    Rachel is a young women.  I am guessing though that she thinks SHE, not the women before her, is the reason she is successful.

    I will stop here because nasty comments are at the surface and I want to watch Bill!!!


    She is so crass (5.00 / 3) (#123)
    by MichaelGale on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:22:17 PM EST
    no control and no common sense when she opens her mouth,  She desperately wants to be one of the boys.

    I can imagine how many women work for MSNBC and have earned a show but she got it.

    Morons MSNBC


    I Have Come To Believe (5.00 / 15) (#10)
    by BDB on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:12:42 PM EST
    that most "liberal" pundits and bloggers don't listen to a word Obama has said or paid any attention to his policy positions.  They seem to have no idea he ran to the right of every single other candidate in the Democratic Primary on domestic issues with the possible exception of his running mate.  I'm beginning to believe that we're seeing the racism of the white liberal elites - Obama must be liberal because he's black.  I wish I could come up with a more generous explanation, but why else would they completely miss Obama's entire campaign?

    a less generous explanation (5.00 / 5) (#15)
    by Redshoes on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:15:42 PM EST
    is they're all corporate shills and they're protecting their own.   I have long maintained that Obama is our puppet.  I just want to know who is pulling the strings.  

    or they are bunch of stupid ... (5.00 / 2) (#30)
    by Salo on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:21:31 PM EST
    ...aristocrats spawned from years of a very perculiar inbreeding ritual.  Their eyes are truly wide shut.

    It would almost be reassuring to know that they are just stupid, instead of conspiratorial deliberate losers.


    Yes, I have actually made that (5.00 / 3) (#36)
    by JavaCityPal on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:24:48 PM EST
    comment on multiple occasions here. The scuffle ABC reporters had with the police today might have been getting close to some of the puppeteers.

    What amazes me is that the democrats would have their corporate meetings so close to the convention when the city is crawling with journalists, and probably plenty of people trying to get footage and information for possible documentaries.


    I've been thinking the same thing............ (5.00 / 1) (#146)
    by SueBonnetSue on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 10:59:22 PM EST
    Their racism is blinding them.  The HAVE TO support a Black man, NO MATTER WHAT.  I find it patronizing, condescending, and disgusting.  

    I CAN'T WAIT until America really is all about the content of our character and not about race or gender.  It's making me ill.  


    I quit paying attention to pundits (5.00 / 3) (#12)
    by myiq2xu on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:15:05 PM EST
    years ago.

    They add nothing in the way of insight or wisdom.

    Obama's message has been very confusing (5.00 / 6) (#13)
    by BernieO on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:15:13 PM EST
    At one point he said that both parties left the poor and working class behing in the 80's and 90's, which is a huge lie about Clinton's legacy of moving record numbers of people out of poverty. It has really been disturbing to me to see how Obama and so many Democrats run away from Clintons amazing record. It is out best evidence that Democrats know how to govern.
    I also think Democrats are stupid to not point out that Jimmy Carter put this country firmly on the road to energy independence.  Reagan came along and told everyone there would be plenty of oil forever and undid a lot of Carter's policies which is why we are so dependent of foreign oil today.
    Why is it that Democrats will not take on the ridiculous image of Reagan as this great genius when a lot of the problems we face today - the oil crisis, the burgeoning debt, the increase in the income gap, to name a few - are the result of his policies?  Bush followed Reagan's script on the economy and undid all the gains we had made under Clinton. The party leaders are a bunch of pathetic wimps.

    Jeffrey Toobin (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by BernieO on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:27:28 PM EST
    just pointed out that it was LBJ that got the Civil Rights act passed and this is his 100th birthday.
    Toobin better hope that Ted didn't hear him. He was furious when Hillary pointed out that it was LBJ who got the bill passed because he felt she diminished his brother's legacy. It's true that a lot of people think it was JFK who got the Civil Rights Bill enacted but I was astounded that Ted was angry that Hillary dared to speak the truth. It was shortly after that that he came out in support of Obama, if I remember correctly. Nothing like fighting for a fake legacy.

    You recall it correctly. Teddy (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Cream City on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:35:10 PM EST
    Kennedy may be the greatest disappointment among all the Dems.  May he recover and live long and well, for all the good things he has done.  

    But "nobody's perfect" may be the Kennedy clan motto.  


    I knew it was LBJ's birthday today, but (none / 0) (#67)
    by JavaCityPal on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:36:53 PM EST
    I didn't realize it would have been his 100th.

    I've wondered outloud several times if:

    Kennedy was reaching around the Clintons to Obama because he realizes the Kennedy mystique is about over, and he wanted a symbolic heir. For me, Camelot ended with JFK, Jr and his wife.

    Ted was never part of it. He was a great fighter for the elderly and the poor. Not sure if he ever did anything for women's rights, though.


    Dunno if that Ted story was confirmed, (none / 0) (#87)
    by brodie on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:45:47 PM EST
    but if true I could understand his reaction.  Hillary did seem to downplay JFK's pivotal, courageous role in the CR enactment, as she noted that he was merely "hopeful" about the bill while emphasing much more strongly the role the next year of Pres Lyndon.  

    It was Kennedy after all who first proposed the bill -- against VP Lyndon Johnson's objections -- and it was Kennedy who privately doubted, often, with his brother Bobby that he might well have just written his political "swan song".

    Well, all that brouhaha was a bad omen for Hillary, in retrospect.  She was left holding the bag for Lyndon, and that's not going to win with the public in a contest with someone running with the spirit of JFK.

    As for Rachel's Obama as anti-Clintonism, I'd imagine that in a transitional period, moving away from hardline conservative attitudes towards gov't, that Obama will end up governing as a mix of Clinton centrist pragmatism and Kennedy liberal pragmatism.  The time of incremental change is about at an end, and the public is once again, as in the 60, eager for fundamental change.


    Really - LBJ was a good (5.00 / 3) (#135)
    by Xanthe on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:03:48 PM EST
    domestic president.  And his skills pushed that Civil Rights bill through -

    JFK having died young is a tragic romantic figure - and it seems dangerous to heap anything but praise on him.  I remember his presidency - it was exciting but I was too young and inexperienced to see the dark side of the moon - it was there.  

    It's unfair to add JFK's - LBJ's dueling legacies to Hillary's list of faults.  I'd not heard before that Ted Kennedy was angry about that remark - God, DC is a den of vipers.


    Obama trashed the Clinton admin all primary season (5.00 / 5) (#45)
    by SarahSpin on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:30:11 PM EST
    Once he had secured the nomaination, lo and behold!  It was suddenly found to not be such a bad thing.

    I personally don't know what "Clintonism" is.  I find the Clintons to be constantly evolving, with their ears to the ground, and generally a little ahead of the curve as far as new techologies.  When Susan Estrich said, about ten months ago on Stephanie Miller, that Hillary was pitch perfect on the issues, I didn't realize just how right she was.  


    Obama did what he felt (none / 0) (#105)
    by brodie on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:54:00 PM EST
    he had to do in very unusual political circumstances.  No question it was rough at times, perhaps even a little disrespectful to the ex prez.  

    As for Susan Estrich, I doubt if she felt HRC's vote on IRaq was "pitch perfect."  It sure didn't help her in this cycle, and imo had she not voted that way, she would have probably waltzed to the nomination.  Obama might not have even bothered to enter, who knows.


    The end justifies the means, right... (5.00 / 1) (#142)
    by katana on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:51:50 PM EST
    Obama did what he felt had to do in very unusual political circumstances..

    Excellently put!  Although, of course, one could say the same about any politician running for office, for instance Saxby Chambliss, or Bob Corker, or Jesse Helms--or, back in the day, Joe McCarthy.

    After all, every politician sees every race as a set of unusual circumstances, which then permits him to justify anything and everything he does.

    Now I do understand that if Barrack Obama were ever caught in a barn teaching a ewe the subtler points of Chicago-style lovemaking, his more passionate admirers would explain that he was merely doing research into the emotional responses of widowed sheep.  But not all of us are quite that besotted.

    Some of us might respect Obama (and his adorers) more if he (and his adorers) would stop pretending that anything he does is okay because he does it.  It's not.  Bad acts don't become good acts because Obama commits them.  Now nobody expects a faux-gentleman like Obama to acknowledge that he treated Clinton--and the Clinton Presidency--contemptibly (and certainly nobody expects his moister adorers to acknowledge it) but we do expect him (and his adorers) to have the sense to grasp that dismissing the Clinton Presidency is even stupider than dismissing Senator Clinton's voters.


    Enough with the BS about the Iraq vote (5.00 / 1) (#145)
    by ricosuave on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 10:58:56 PM EST
    The AUMF vote is an entirely fabricated wedge issue for the primaries.  Let's stop pretending it is some vast difference between Hillary and Obama that puts her on the wrong side of the war.

    Read her floor speech from the time of the vote.  It is a very reasoned argument for why she voted the way she did, and (even if you don't agree with her arguments) shows that she was thoughtful and aware of the consequences of the vote.

    For all the importance Obama folks place on this vote, Obama himself completely ignored it in "the speech" on the war.  The speech was either just before or just afer this vote (nobody is really sure, despite whatever date you see plastered on your copy of the speech), but Obama doesn't mention the landmark vote, doesn't call on the Senate to act one way or the other, and doesn't call on the listeners to take any action whatsoever.

    Then he goes silent about the war.  He takes the speech off his website for his Senate bid.  He votes for all of the funding resolutions without a peep.  He says he probably would have voted for it also (which seems pretty likely given his recent vote on FISA).  He endorses pro-war Lieberman over anti-war Lamont in the primary, and doesn't back Lamont (even after he wins the nomination) until just before the election.  And that is pretty much his entire record related to the war.

    So go rejoice that your guy won, but stop trying to rewrite history.


    Ah... (none / 0) (#116)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:05:09 PM EST
    and imo had she not voted that way, she would have probably waltzed to the nomination.

    A Kos fan, no doubt.

    You guys are hysterical.


    I have no idea (none / 0) (#118)
    by brodie on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:09:21 PM EST
    what nonsense you are talking about, nor do I care much these days what Kos says.  In fact, I'm on record here as being a fervent non-fan of that curious fellow.  

    But instead of the personal jab, why don't you try responding on the substance next time ...


    I disagreed with HRC's vote but for New Yorkers (none / 0) (#157)
    by SarahSpin on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 12:09:47 PM EST
    It probably did strike the right note.

    Obama was extremely lucky he was not called on to vote for the IWR, though I'm pretty sure that he either would have voted yes, or skipped it.


    Yep (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by jb64 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:16:33 PM EST
    The Whole middle class argument is a cut and paste job from the Clinton campaign. interestingly, Clinton ran on a post-partisan campaign as well, saying many times that he would not reject a good idea out of hand, even if it came from a Republican.

    More and more, it appears as though  the Obama campaign is a conglomeration of the McGovern campaign and the Clinton campaign. Piss off the base (McGovern) but be post-partisan, and fall over yourself promising the moon to the middle class (Clinton)

    Personally, I say lose the former and embrace the latter.

    Oh, Ot- Jim Clyburn is a tool

    I think you are mistaken (5.00 / 10) (#17)
    by RonK Seattle on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:16:40 PM EST
    Obama is coming to liberate the Democratic party from all her treasured traditions.

    He's the cowbird candidate, hatching his eggs in the nests somebody else built.

    I like that analogy (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by BernieO on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:21:29 PM EST
    He makes me think of Chauncey Gardiner in the movie "Being There". People project their hopes onto him but it is really hard to know who he really is and what he will do if elected.

    Being There (none / 0) (#41)
    by lisadawn82 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:26:27 PM EST
    What a great movie.  

    What I remember about that movie is Chauncey literally walking on water at the end.  Hmmm...


    "If you tend the garden...in...the fall.... (none / 0) (#72)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:37:44 PM EST
    the garden will...bloom! in the...spring."

    "I like to watch."


    Agreed (5.00 / 3) (#53)
    by Valhalla on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:31:48 PM EST
    I'm pretty sure Obama's anything but a populist, but it's impossible to say what he stands for otherwise.

    There is a difference between finding commonality with a traditional political enemy when interests coincide, or compromising (as with DADT) in a way you'd really rather not just to move the goalposts a little closer to your side, and embracing the policies and goals of the other side.

    Clinton did the former 2, Obama does the latter.

    Today I realized that Obama is only a Democrat because he happened to be in Chicago when he started his political career.  You can't be anything else in Chicago and expect to have success, or expect help in gaining a national stage.  There are many dedicated Democrats in Chicago, but, as with any ambitious person who is already in a system with a highly dominant political structure, being a Democrat and toeing the dominant line is the only way to get ahead.  Which is the source of Obama's facility in switching his policies to fit the most politically advantageous line of the moment.

    That isn't how Bill Clinton started.  Arkansas is no Chicago.  Bill is no less ambitious, but he 'grew up' politically with a dominant political environment that was not favorable to particularly liberal views.  So he pushed his state as far as it would go.  He did the same thing, largely, as President.

    There's a big difference between making the argument you think will win, and creating a winning argument out of your beliefs.  I'd say Clintonism is the latter.


    Correction: Obama did not "happen" (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by Cream City on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:37:04 PM EST
    to be in Chicago.  He researched and picked it precisely for the reasons you cite.  That has been in several bio accounts.

    I didn't realize that, thanks n/t (5.00 / 2) (#143)
    by Valhalla on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 10:49:27 PM EST
    The shrill fans have been claiming.... (5.00 / 3) (#25)
    by Maria Garcia on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:19:39 PM EST
    ...the populism mantle for some weeks now. When they defended Obama's FISA vote without missing a beat, I guess they knew that "progressive" was out the window. So heck, populism starts with the same letter. Why not? Other than BTD, who will challenge their redefinition?

    By the way, today BTD has made me proud to be Puerto Rican!

    Rachel, Rachel, Rachel (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by bjorn on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:20:19 PM EST
    infected with KO and Tweety disease.

    Someone at MSNBC needs to start fact checking their commentators and taking them off the air when they tell such tales!

    I am starting to feel sorry for Obama. With all these idiots trying to help him he doesn't stand a chance.

    I agree (5.00 / 5) (#27)
    by zvs888 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:20:30 PM EST
    Yeah I said this in the other thread about what it means to be a Democrat, but Obama is way closer to Bill than Hillary is to either of them.

    Hillary is the most pure "Democrat" of the three in terms of ideology.  Bill and Barack are the most willing to accomodate and go all over the place.

    I never heard Bill or Barack talk like I saw Hillary talk last night, and I've listened to most of Bill's speeches.

    I agree 100% BTD.

    Obama is the candidate... (5.00 / 7) (#31)
    by Jerrymcl89 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:21:40 PM EST
    ... who allows Democrats with a grudge against the Clintons to replace them with somebody exactly like them and call it change.

    Wish I could vote a 100 (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by jb64 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:24:12 PM EST
    You've finally cracked the code!!

    Only the party apparatus (5.00 / 2) (#43)
    by Prabhata on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:28:55 PM EST
    has rejected Clinton and everything Clinton.  More than 18 million voters embraced them.  Which one is more important? Time will tell.  It's up to us, those who wanted an open and democratic vote at the convention, to do what is right this November.  We know what happened and no rigged show   link will change the truth.

    stupid, anti-factual, anti-historical (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by lambert on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:30:53 PM EST
    And very well paid to be all of those things.

    On the analogy of William Jennings Bryan (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by facta non verba on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:38:20 PM EST
    and Obama. It's actually not a stretch. Both Obama and Bryan are known for lofty speeches though Bryan was a populist while Obama is clearly not. But Bryan had a penchant for unifying the Republicans. In 1880s and 1890s, the Republicans were on the verge of losing their dominant party status having been the party in power from 1861 through 1884. Cleveland would win the White House twice in 1884 and 1892 losing it in 1888. This period of American history is also the one where American corporations first gained their ascendancy winning "personhood" in a landmark court case in 1872 (Union Pacific v Santa Clara) and the period saw a rapid rise in income inequality. Bryan and the populist James Weaver became the champions of the anti-corporate cause. Had Weaver not been around, it is possible that Bryan might have won the White House once but doubtful really. Bryan had one big effect on the Republicans, it brought them together. Obama will have the same effect. It will bring them together.

    Then Obama is the opposite of WJB (5.00 / 1) (#81)
    by Prabhata on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:42:12 PM EST
    Obama is the most divisive candidate I've known.

    Divisive in his own party (none / 0) (#92)
    by facta non verba on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:47:12 PM EST
    but also unifying in the other. McCain has shored up 89% of the GOP base according to Rasmussen Reports while Obama is in the low 70s.

    I think the more approriate analogy for Obama is Adlai Stevenson.


    Indeed. We know the end results (none / 0) (#99)
    by Prabhata on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:51:53 PM EST
    of Stevenson.

    Rejection of the Democrats (5.00 / 2) (#85)
    by koshembos on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:43:53 PM EST
    The amount of fascist talk and stupidity emanating from the Obama camp is endless and boundless.

    If Obama rejects Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, he rejects the poor, universal health care. He also rejects FDR, JFK and LBJ.

    I think Madam Maddow is right, Obama is a Republican. The Democratic party should spit him out like a rotten fish.

    Obama doesn't reject (none / 0) (#104)
    by Rashomon66 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:53:57 PM EST
    He doesn't reject Bill and Hillary's positions. It is possible to agree on the issues but disagree on how exactly to get them done. But I can assure you if Obama becomes President and Hillary becomes head of the Senate things will get done. Could be very exciting.

    Maybe you should (none / 0) (#124)
    by MichaelGale on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:25:46 PM EST
    sit down, read about Bill Clinton and his legacy and then sit down and read about Obama and his....his...
    Oh hell, just read Audacity of Hope.  But make sure you get the corrected copy.

    We'll see, won't we (5.00 / 1) (#147)
    by Alien Abductee on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 11:11:10 PM EST
    Of course, without first defining what you mean by Clintonism - and there are multiple definitions - it's impossible to say what 'rejecting' it even means.

    the pundits are in love with their own (5.00 / 1) (#151)
    by kempis on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 05:18:07 AM EST

    Of course it's a rejection of Clintonism (4.00 / 1) (#51)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:31:41 PM EST
    Obama had to say that in order to get the nomination.  Because if you didn't reject Clintonism, why wouldn't you vote for Hillary Clinton? How could he explicitly run on the record of the Clinton presidency?  Obama had to run against the Clinton brand.

    But as in many re-branding campaigns, the product doesn't change all that much. "Change you can believe in" is just triangulation in a new dress.

    Of all the things about Obama that has always driven me crazy was the notion that Obama was "above" politics. Of course he's not.  How could he be?  Why would you want him to be. As it turns out, he's a very clever and skilled politican. And frankly, that's one of the reasons I don't think he'll be a bad president.

    Now, as an addmirer of the Clintons and a Hillary supporter, I didn't like the way in which Obama chose to be clever. It's not very nice when a Democratic presidential candidate disses a former Democratic president.  It's not very nice when a Democratic presidential candidate tolerates misogyny but decries as racist comments from people who are anything but.  

    But no one has ever run against a former president's wife before. It was probably inevitable that Obama would have to appear to run against Clintonism.

    In the end, I care more that he runs and governs as a Democrat, rather than as a disciple of Clintonism.  Now that he's got the nomination, there is no reason to run away from the Clintons, and considerable danger.  See, e.g., Al Gore 2000.  I can't say that those of you who are concerned about whether he's really progressive have no reason to worry.  I'm concerned myself. But I think the chances that he will turn out to be a closet Republican are very slim.  He will in any event not be an impediment to a progressive Congressional legislative agenda, assuming that the Congressional Dems are finally emboldened by a Dem in the White House to remember how to enact decent legislation.  I know that they will not be bold, even if their numbers increase, if there is a President McCain.  

    wELL... (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:37:10 PM EST
    He will in any event not be an impediment to a progressive Congressional legislative agenda, assuming that the Congressional Dems are finally emboldened by a Dem in the White House to remember how to enact decent legislation.

    There will be no progressive legislation.

    There might be legislation that undoes some of what Bush has done, but I'm not optimistic, since no one wants to talk about that.

    The dems, btw, weren't "emboldened" after eight years of Reagan and then four more years of Bush.

    So, again, I'm not optimistic.


    There will certainly be no (none / 0) (#91)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:46:32 PM EST
    progressive legislation under a McCain presidency. And if the Congressional Dems can't be trusted to grow a pair under an Obama presidency, there is absolutely no chance they will do so in a McCain presidency. Not even teeny weeny shrunken little balls so as to resist the bad legislation that gets proposed by McCain and his neo-con advisors.

    As I said. (none / 0) (#113)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:01:51 PM EST
    dems didn't grow a pair when Clinton was president.  They had the chance, btw.  They blew it.

    But we're supposed to believe it will be different for Obama?


    The arguments aren't going to work.  There's too much history there.


    Then why are people saying (none / 0) (#138)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:20:08 PM EST
    that a Democratic Congress will keep President McCain in check?

    Because they are largely the same people... (none / 0) (#148)
    by ricosuave on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 11:21:09 PM EST
    ...who kept Bush in check!  Remember how hard they fought against John Roberts and Harriet Myers?  Remember how they stood up to Bush on domestic spying?  Remember all those great investigations where they uncovered corruption and overpoliticization?

    Actually (3.00 / 1) (#55)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:32:12 PM EST
    I really don't remember Clinton making post-partisanship a campaign message.

    Yes.  He compromised on some thing while in office.  And that discussion will always continue.

    But it was a long time ago.  I just can't actually provide any examples of Clinton selling a post-partisan vision while he was running for office.

    If Obama is a rejection of Clintonism, it's because he rejects, well, he's even said so, the old party divisions that were rooted in the 60s, and, he thinks, if you believe him, made it impossible to get some things done during Bill's administration.

    I'm not sold on them being the same.

    But, yes, we do know Obama is everything the netroots claimed to despise.

    Your memory is faulty (none / 0) (#60)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:33:56 PM EST
    And I feel I have had this discussion with you before.

    Well (none / 0) (#78)
    by indiependy on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:41:11 PM EST
    Clinton's actions on welfare reform, defense of marriage act, don't ask don't tell, NAFTA, GATT, farm deregulation, telecommunications deregulation, financial services deregulation would tend to undermine your argument.

    Not necessarily (none / 0) (#103)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:53:49 PM EST
    We're talking about campaign messages here.

    So what someone would have to do is go back to the campaign of 1992 and provide examples of Bill Clinton spending most of his speaking out against the partisan gridlock in DC.

    I think someone would find that he spent most of his time arguing very intelligently and compassionately for a populist agenda.

    And while we can debate the compromises of his administration, the numbers speak louder in terms of job creation, people raised out of poverty, etc. etc. etc.


    Yes. I will add (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:58:22 PM EST
    He may not have executed a populist agenda as it was imagined, and written about by activists, both pragmatic and not so very pragmatic, but I still contend the RESULTS were, by definition, populist.

    And like I always say, if giving rich people tax breaks raised people out of poverty, I'd be for it.

    But it doesn't.


    Don't know much about history (none / 0) (#1)
    by Redshoes on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:09:31 PM EST
    but WJB lost.  Not an encouraging associate.  What has struck me about Obama (Jimmy Carter's on MSNB and one sense the genuineness of his comments re: importance of the symbolism attached to the nomination) is his backers -- very early on not just the big names Kennedy and Rockefeller but the we don't know.  Just when and how was this nomination crafted.  Any links?  Any ideas?

    the convention speech? (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by Salo on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:14:53 PM EST
    2004 sounds about right.

    There's a lass from Yorkshire who basically saw Bill and said:

    "I'll make sure he's President."

    She was married to Churchill's son I think and then married an American millionaire and moved to the states.  She introduced him at parties and the lecture circuit prior to his governorship and beyond--even in the UK.  She recently died of old age.

    This is who I think Obama was sent by:

    Penny Pritzger and Ayers Senior (no not the WU leader).  


    I had forgotten about (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by BernieO on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:19:03 PM EST
    Pamela Churchill Harriman supporting Bill. The rest of the party insiders hated him from what I know. She was a powerful force, though.

    that's her. (none / 0) (#33)
    by Salo on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:24:12 PM EST
    She saw something brilliant and moved heaven and earth to get him the job.  My dad knew her sometime back in the 1950s. She didn't have an obvious vested interest though.

    Hopefully these Chicago backers have good motives, because they more or less created Obama.


    What are the odds of that? (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by BernieO on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:30:43 PM EST
    Chicago politics is as dirty as it gets.

    Thanks I'll google (none / 0) (#32)
    by Redshoes on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:22:53 PM EST
    her.  Why him?  

    Is the Clinton hate based on a fear that they know the score and how to keep it or because they're afraid HRC would tap into her inner Eleanor?  

    These are the questions I wish our corporate media would explore.


    I think a lot of it is just (5.00 / 3) (#62)
    by BernieO on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:34:43 PM EST
    plain old jealousy. For example, I have been told that Tweety is really jealous of Clinton because he can't believe that some hillbilly from Arkansas is more successful than he is. There was a lot of that kind of feeling from the inside the beltway crowd. They are a bunch of pathetic losers emotionally stuck in adolescence and still trying to align themselves with the kool kids.

    Ha! (none / 0) (#7)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:11:10 PM EST
    Last night Rachel Maddow said that Obama is a rejection of Clintonism. And I wondered, if that is so, then isn't that an argument for Clinton supporters to NOT vote for Obama? To not get over it? After all, if that were true, then the PUMAs would have a point, wouldn't they?

    Rachel, sadly, works for the MSM now.

    Most I've seen love republicans.

    Uh oh.

    It shows how little these pundats read (none / 0) (#9)
    by samtaylor2 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:12:01 PM EST
    Or even listen to Obama.  There was a great article in the Post today about the similarity of these 2 men.  

    Unbelievable. (5.00 / 1) (#122)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:19:16 PM EST
    Well, not really.

    I just reread this from a NYT's article referenced by Media Matters:

    To many, the comments echoed a building tone of disrespect that Mrs. Clinton had been expressing toward Mr. Obama -- pooh-poohing his commitment to change as merely "hoping for it," implying that her fellow United States senator was all talk. Bill Clinton took things even further, ranting against the media for not challenging the "fairy tale" that he said Mr. Obama's rise was predicated on. (He was referring specifically to the perception that Mr. Obama was totally pure in his opposition to the Iraq war.)

    This infuriated prominent blacks like the Democratic operative and commentator Donna Brazile and Representative James E Clyburn of the critical primary state South Carolina, both of whom have been close to the Clintons and have remained neutral in the race. For Mr. Clinton "to go after Obama, using `fairy tale,' calling him a `kid,' as he did last week, it's an insult," Ms. Brazile said on CNN. "And I tell you, as an African- American, I find his words and his tone to be very depressing."

    So Bill's remarks were "defended" in an aside and overshadowed by Brazile and Clyburn, who got to spew their crap unfettered.

    The fix was in.


    There was an editorial (5.00 / 1) (#126)
    by MichaelGale on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:28:40 PM EST
    in the Washington Post yesterday that strongly suggested Obam follow and use Bill Clinton' legacy.

    Funny they would write an editorial urging him to do that huh?


    Shouldn't you be studying (none / 0) (#24)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:19:31 PM EST
    or something?

    You are in med school, after all.


    Word- Test is in 2 days (5.00 / 1) (#120)
    by samtaylor2 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:14:19 PM EST
    God damn I hate tests (which makes medical school a pain in the ass).  

    Taking the boards the week of the convention is sora tuff.  ADD is kick in hard


    No (none / 0) (#22)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:18:08 PM EST
    Obama is not a rejection of "Clintonism".

    He is a rejection of Clinton by the media and the "D"NC.

    Clinton and Clintonism are two different things.

    But (none / 0) (#37)
    by chrisvee on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:25:21 PM EST
    WJB was a gifted orator and so is Barack Obama. You mean that doesn't make them exactly alike in kind and circumstance??? Why do you hate punditry???

    Hillary sounds more like a traditional Democrat to me than a Clintonian. Up is down, down is up.

    Of course, then you have (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by BrianJ on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:30:15 PM EST
    To answer the question, what is Clintonism?  Balanced budgets through increased taxation of the wealthy, universal health care, national service (Americorps)-  sounds pretty "Traditional Democratic" to me.  THere were some heterodox elements, such as his 1994 crime bill and welfare reform, but I don't think even those could be called serious breaches from the Democratic mainstream.

    BTD (none / 0) (#44)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:29:11 PM EST
    I look at in terms of a coalition. Obama is really the old McGovern coalition reasserting iself at the loss of power from the Clintons hence I think this is where a lot of the "CDS" comes from. His base is the same one that got McGovern the nomination in 1972. I read an article today where Gerald McEntee said that the union rank and file are abandoining the Obama campaign en masse and are even telling him to his face that they won't vote for Obama. This is the same thing that happened to McGovern. The "new" coalition at that time was supposed to carry the day. We all know how that worked out don't we?

    How sad, then, that (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by litigatormom on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:32:26 PM EST
    Obama is not as liberal as McGovern.

    It's a rejection of the DLC (none / 0) (#50)
    by VelvetElvis on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:31:09 PM EST
    That's what I think "rejection of Clintonism" means but most people don't know what the DLC is so it's easier to just say "Clintonism."

    How is it a rejection of the DLC? (none / 0) (#57)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:32:27 PM EST
    In what sense? Surely not in terms of issues or ideology.

    And in terms of political style (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:34:32 PM EST
    IT is DLCism perfected.

    the power base (none / 0) (#86)
    by VelvetElvis on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:45:41 PM EST

    I doubt Harold Ford will be getting a Cabinet position in an Obama Whitehouse.

    I do expect to see a little bit more economic populism from an Obama administration than we would have from a Clinton administration.  I'm putting a lot of faith in his Alinsky ties.
    I was talking about this the other night.  This primary was really been a referendum on the legacy of Alinsky, Hillary having rejected his methods where Obama embraced them.

    There is a big difference between pragmatic compromise and disarming your adversary by co-opting their issues which is the essence of triagulation. It was the glee with which Bill Clinton declared the era of big government over after stabbing welfare in the back that made a lot of us on the far left squirm back then.


    You are in for a rude awakening (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:51:13 PM EST
    I voted for Nader in 2000 (none / 0) (#137)
    by VelvetElvis on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:10:07 PM EST
    I'm aware of the fact that any electable Democrat is likely to suck ass.  I have no illusions, only hopes that this guy, based on his history, might suck less.

    I'm not voting third party again until we're out of Iraq.


    Newsflash (5.00 / 1) (#100)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:52:26 PM EST
    Obama is running ads saying that he supported welfare reform.

    Pragmatic compromise! (none / 0) (#95)
    by dk on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:49:25 PM EST
    This is hysterical!  You win comment of the day from me, my friend.

    Obama has also (none / 0) (#102)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:53:37 PM EST
    talked about getting people jobs and off welfare.  

    I'm not understanding what your problem is here.


    LOL (none / 0) (#63)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:34:51 PM EST
    Still on about the DLC.

    Newsflash.  Evangelical outreach and the statements we've heard about abortion and such is WORSE than the DLC.

    The DLC endorsed voting for FISA.  I didn't take it for granted that they would, but they did.  I looked it up.  Which is a good bit more than anyone else does when they start spouting off about the DLC.

    So what is Obama a rejection of, now?


    Hard to take (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:38:38 PM EST
    for Elvis and those like him that the guy they have been sweating blood for is basically Al From's wet dream.

    Sad thing (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:50:43 PM EST
    is that Al From's wet dream was a winner in the 90's and that's the way it had to be. We now longer really need the DLC candidate but now we have one.

    It's hard to take for me, as well. (none / 0) (#130)
    by Landulph on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:37:29 PM EST
    How could it have come to this?

    It's my stalker buddy! (none / 0) (#149)
    by VelvetElvis on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 12:36:29 AM EST
    Hi stalker buddy!

    If you said something truthful of smart (none / 0) (#150)
    by Edgar08 on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 02:33:20 AM EST
    I wouldn't have to root out your lies and ignorance.

    Okay (none / 0) (#65)
    by Steve M on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:35:45 PM EST
    Does it follow, then, that by rejecting Hillary Clinton, the party reaffirmed its commitment to Clintonism?

    To put it less cutely, when we attempt to assign a meaning to the actions of voters, does it matter more what those voters thought they were doing, or what they actually did?

    I think (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:37:30 PM EST
    it is facile to argue that anything in particular was accepted or rejected, especially in a nailbiter contest like this one.

    Well (none / 0) (#83)
    by Steve M on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:43:05 PM EST
    I agree with that, just as I agree that we often overstate the "lessons" of close elections like 2004.

    But more to the point, what did the netroots reject?  Did they reject Hillary's historical reputation for triangulation, or did they reject her actual Politics of Contrast campaign?

    As we see in the comments on this website, albeit in a different sort of context, people often imagine they are sending messages with their votes that never actually get sent.


    Nah. (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by chel2551 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:57:46 PM EST
    You're right.

    The little men couldn't stomach the thought.

    And I do mean little.


    It's Ok, (none / 0) (#141)
    by sleepwalker on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:32:23 PM EST
    their rejection is coming in a couple of months. Anything that Hillary did last night to unify the  party was more than undone tonight. Now that the Clinton supporters have been completely rejected, it will be easy to cast our votes elsewhere. The bump from this convention will be McCain's. After the speech tomorrow night complete with imagery of a frat boy toga party the schism will be complete.

    No they rejected the "Old" Democratic (5.00 / 1) (#131)
    by MichaelGale on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:38:35 PM EST
    Party for a new Democratic Party where there are no labels at all.  We are to be one big happy family, no Rep, no Dem, all will be governed and government will be non partisan.

    WE will sit down and talk and we will compromise and we will take the middle ground and our Faith will lead us.

    WE will change the world and they will bow down to us in glorious appreciation because we compromise with them too...and take the middle.  And on and on and on.

    WE are happy, happy all the time.

    Oh damn. I can't stand it.


    No they rejected the "Old" Democratic (none / 0) (#132)
    by MichaelGale on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:38:56 PM EST
    Party for a new Democratic Party where there are no labels at all.  We are to be one big happy family, no Rep, no Dem, all will be governed and government will be non partisan.

    WE will sit down and talk and we will compromise and we will take the middle ground and our Faith will lead us.

    WE will change the world and they will bow down to us in glorious appreciation because we compromise with them too...and take the middle.  And on and on and on.

    WE are happy, happy all the time.

    Oh damn. I can't stand it.


    The voters did not choose Obama (5.00 / 3) (#75)
    by Prabhata on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:38:42 PM EST
    The voters did not choose Clinton.  The voters were divided and the party apparatus chose Obama.

    I wish (none / 0) (#93)
    by Steve M on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:48:35 PM EST
    you would not put words in my mouth, particularly when it just serves to distract from the conversation.

    I understand that people have strong opinions about the primary, and I share many of those opinions, but they do not need to be repeated over and over in every single thread.  Trust me, you have already gone on record.


    But Hillary isn't Bill (none / 0) (#101)
    by facta non verba on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 07:53:20 PM EST
    politically. They do have different priorities, free trade for example. Bill is much pro free-trade than Hillary.

    If by Clintonism it is meant the Clintons themselves then perhaps by the Democratic Establishment (Dashcle, Durbin, Kennedy) than by the voters. Hillary still won almost 18 million votes, that's hardly a rejection.

    On the other hand, I have long held that some in the Democratic Party (Dashcle, Durbin, Kennedy, Kerry, Pelosi, Dean, Brazile) wanted someone they can control hence Obama. The approach of the Democratic Party is like the former Holy Roman Empire, sure it was an Empire with an Emperor but it was composed of all these little fiefdoms. That's the Democratic Party. The Princes want to rule and thus need a weak Emperor. They got one.

    And Bill himself (5.00 / 1) (#119)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:11:49 PM EST
    Has learned that deals like NAFTA don't mean much if the restrictions can't be enforced.

    And Al has learned that if the FCC isn't going to exercize any authority over a company like, say, comcast, then his legislation didn't have an impact that was strictly positive as well.

    Nobody's saying these people are perfect.  People are just saying they're not corporatist sell out Dems.

    Well.  That's what I'm saying anyway.


    The Russian Pulitburo is more likely (none / 0) (#112)
    by Prabhata on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:01:17 PM EST
    The party ignored its own rules to nominate Obama.

    That anology (none / 0) (#115)
    by facta non verba on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:04:48 PM EST
    is also true. For all the talk of a grassroots party, a big tent party, the facts are the control comes from the top.

    Anyone who still watches MSNBC (none / 0) (#134)
    by Bluesage on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 08:54:09 PM EST
    Is engaging in a psyche torturing experience.  I cannot stand to listen to Olberman, Maddow, Tweety or any of the rest of those morons and their constant Hillary hatred.  A rejection of Clintonism???  Is that really the best that she can offer in the way of punditry?  After Hillary's speech last night I tuned in to MSNBC after many months just because my curiosity got the best of me and I wanted to see what they had to say.  It was hilarious - they were all like deer in the headlights and seemed almost dumbfounded.  It was carthatic in a weird sort of way watching them stumble around for a story.  

    Obama rejects Clintonism? He swiped the Clinton (none / 0) (#136)
    by WillBFair on Wed Aug 27, 2008 at 09:08:17 PM EST
    policy agenda from day one. And I'm thrilled to learn he's still running with it: middle class tax cuts, fiscal resonsibility, bipartisanship, health care, strategic investment, green energy, far reaching diplomacy. It makes me sad that he'll get credit for what Bill devised at the DLC, and what Bill and Hillary developed in office. But Americans don't care two straws about fairness.
    Again, Maddow works for GE, a giant defense contractor. It's her job to trash the Clintons, also known as most knowledgeable leaders of our time.
    You don't get to be a national pundit by having an ounce of integrity.

    Rachel? No. Anglachel? Yes. (none / 0) (#153)
    by bmc on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 07:03:53 AM EST

    The best response to Rachel--a bright and clever, but incredibly stupid Rhodes Scholar--Maddow is Anglachel's latest at the above. Read it. Read Anglachel every day.

    William Jennings Bryan's speech (none / 0) (#154)
    by laurie on Thu Aug 28, 2008 at 08:27:46 AM EST
    when accepting the Democratic nomination in July 1900, he argued against the retention of the Philippines.
    "Whether the Spanish war shall be known in history as the war for liberty or as a war of conquest, whether the principles of self government shall be strengthened or abandoned; whether the nation show remain a homogenous Republic or become a heterogeneous empire -- these questions must be answered by the American people -- when they speak, as not until then will destiny be revealed."

    the upshot was paradoxical.  The U. S. having acquired themselves an empire then set about to work to get rid of it.
    However, it took TR,  to end the  War in the Phillippines. He was less hampered in his actions, by public criticism, precisely because he was known as a hawk, and as the builder of the Great White Fleet.