Wednesday Afternoon Open Thread

Anyone feel like talking? Here's an open thread. All topics welcome.

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    Anybody find any left blogger (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 01:40:03 PM EST
    asking any hard questions about our Afghanistan strategy?  I have to finish some paperwork right now.

    dday over at Digby (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by ruffian on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 01:44:29 PM EST
    This is a very dangerous deployment for a number of reasons, not the least of which is how war can erode popular support at home and constrain a President's initiatives. The Vice President has said to expect greater casualties from Afghanistan in the coming year. What we should expect is an actual strategy before committing sons and daughters to an uneasy and perhaps unwinnable conflict.

    Bold is mine. I admit I have not read up on it yet, but I have not heard a strategy articulated iether.


    There's not much out there to find (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 01:53:32 PM EST
    I know that Afghanistan is quickly slipping into the extremely dangerous zone.  I know we have to act swiftly, yet no distinct strategy outlined and I'm still very displeased that Obama got off on the wrong foot with Karzai over what seems to be "collateral damage" issues.  I live with this man who has dedicated enormous amounts of time teaching pilots how to spot a REAL problem before they even think about opening fire.  He fights his way into that bureaqucracy every single long day but his is a small input.  The CIC sets the tone, sets the mood, literally makes the mental rules that his troops access first, unless he decides to let Gates do that.  Trying to get to the meat of our actual strategies right now is like trying to find out what shadow banking entails.

    Kind of slow reaction time I'd say. (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:23:33 PM EST
    And yes, I do know Obama promised during the GE debates he would ramp up our military in Afghanistan.  

    Another point:  every single article, including Feingold's Oct. op ed., assumes as a given U.S. must eradicate poppy growing, U.S. must make sure Afghan. has a nationwide stable government, U.S. must wipe out the Taliban, U.S. must built infrastructure.  Why?


    Why? (none / 0) (#14)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:28:46 PM EST
    Great question...how Afghans choose to make a living is their business, our addiction problem is exactly that...our problem.  Sh*T...if poppy growing keeps 'em fed and warm and not out looking to join the violent radicals, we should be freakin' encouraging it.

    And funny how there is more heroin on the streets of the US since we invaded the joint too...CIA up to their old tricks again?


    and where do we get our "legal" (none / 0) (#89)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:03:09 PM EST
    supply from?

    Please (none / 0) (#105)
    by gyrfalcon on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 11:49:10 PM EST
    The Taliban suppressed poppy growing when they were in charge originally.  The Karzai government turns a blind eye, and the Taliban has decided it's their best source of both funds and support from the otherwise impoverished farmers, so they're now protecting and using it.

    Not quite everything bad that happens on the planet is the result of CIA manipulation.


    All I know is... (none / 0) (#113)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 08:26:05 AM EST
    when we were fighting a covert war in Latin America, cocaine imports increased, with evidence of CIA involvement in drug smuggling.

    And now that we are occupying Afghanistan, heroin is blowing up.

    One helluva coincidence.


    Because the US is a hammer, (none / 0) (#16)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:34:05 PM EST
    those things are all nails?

    What I'm afraid of (none / 0) (#19)
    by ruffian on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:46:17 PM EST
    is trying to reset the clock to 2002 when we, as Kerry said until his voice is in my head whenever I hear the words, "Took our eyes off the ball in Afghanistan". Lot of water under the bridge since then. What may have been the right thing to do back then is not necessarily the right thing now.

    I'm in the pilot training biz too, in the flight sim industry. When you have worked with the pilots directly, you do get a different perspective on putting them out there. I want there to be a good reason and strategy.


    Do you ever train any foreign pilots? (5.00 / 1) (#91)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:19:18 PM EST
    I noticed today at the grocery store we have a fresh batch of Saudi pilots learning to fly something we sold them no doubt.  God those men are so disrespectful to women.  I swear, today I just wanted to reach out and give one of them a little love tap across the face and then say, "neener neener neener, can't kiiill meeeeee".  Man oh man, I have been exposed to some disrespectfulness in my life, but nothing like these guys ALWAYS are.

    Some foreign students (5.00 / 2) (#93)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:36:21 PM EST
    can be the same on campuses, so I know what you mean.  Not all, by any means; I have learned that attitudes vary a lot across the Middle East.

    And it can crop up from other countries.  I had a student from Africa who proudly proclaimed, in his opening words on the first day, that he was the son of a chief.  (The guy was magnificent-looking, for sure; a noble bearing, ritual scarification, etc.)

    I was new to the classroom so couldn't figure out what was up with him for a couple of weeks, when we'd get to the end of class, and I'd head for the door -- and he'd seem to jump up to get the door but actually ended up jostling past me, every time.  Quite roughly after a while, too, then started to challenge me in class as well, etc.

    Finally, a lower-caste African (as he explained himself) tipped me off: No woman precedes the nobility.  And since I kept trying to do so, my authority was being challenged during class, too.

    That one was interesting to resolve.  At least I had authority on my side in that one.  You would not believe -- well, sounds like you would -- some of the treatment that lower-level women faculty get from some of these guys.  Gross.

    But again, just some of them.  Others from other countries in the Middle East and elsewhere can have the most meticulous manners, especially toward teachers, that I'd like them to give etiquette lessons.  Oh, and some of them could give English lessons to some U.S. students, too.:-)


    I never notice this sort of hostility (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:47:00 PM EST
    with pilots here from Egypt, just Saudi Arabia.  We had a power outage at the PX one day and they asked everyone to leave immediately so that nobody could shoplift in the dark.  Then a Saudi student pilot attempted to enter the store and the store manager who was female and also black told him he couldn't.  If he could have, he would have killed her right there by the look on his face.  Later I was told that she had two strikes against her in thinking she could tell him what to do, one was being a woman but the other was being black.  She was a solid American girl though.  She knew what he was thinking and her gaze meeting his never faultered.  I loved it!

    Solid American Girl (5.00 / 2) (#119)
    by daring grace on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 09:36:19 AM EST
    I love it!

    I love her!

    I love us!

    Great image...


    Saudi society (none / 0) (#106)
    by gyrfalcon on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 11:53:32 PM EST
    is much, much more repressive than Egyptian.  Women aren't even allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia.

    From their point of view, we American women are horrible, shameless, immoral harridans.

    Somebody needs to give these folks some serious cultural training in the norms of our society before they come, just as we should get before we go there, IMHO.


    Question (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by NYShooter on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 12:02:07 AM EST
    "Women aren't even allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia."

    What if they get permission from their 12 year old male nephew?


    Nope. (none / 0) (#111)
    by caseyOR on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 01:48:17 AM EST
    No driving, not ever, if you are a woman in Saudi Arabia.

    Do you know which province, or (none / 0) (#126)
    by Inspector Gadget on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 11:29:21 AM EST
    "tribe" they are part of? Sunni or Shiite? I spent two years in the Eastern Province with Shiite's and never, ever once encountered a male being disrespectful to me or to their wives.

    For the level of domestic violence in this country, and the rap lyrics that are readily available to the world, and TV entertainment programming so often centered around physical violence toward women (sorry NCIS, CSI fans) I wonder if they are just trying to "fit in" to the culture they see here. Heck, we showed the world plenty of disrespect for females all last year.


    Teachers..... (5.00 / 2) (#125)
    by vml68 on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 10:24:30 AM EST
    When I first came to this country to go to college I was absolutely horrified by how the students interacted with the teachers. It took me a while to get used to and I had to put up with a lot of teasing in the mean time.

    I came from a background where you never addressed a teacher by their first name, you never ate or drank in class and you never left the room while a teacher was still talking.

    One of the first habits I had to break was automatically standing up as soon as the teacher walked in. There were times when the bell rang and the class would clear out while the professor was still talking and I would be the only one sitting there. This would invariably make me late for the next class and then I would apologize for being late and it would crack some of the students up because we were taking some of the same classes and they knew why I was late. They never understood why I would not just walk in and sit.


    "neener neener neener, can't kiiill meee (none / 0) (#118)
    by vml68 on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 09:07:17 AM EST
    Do you really believe that every Saudi pilot is training so that they can join AQ and come kill you?
    Honestly, I find this "neener neener neener, can't kiiill meeeeee" very childish and offensive.

    Perhaps you should re-read... (5.00 / 1) (#120)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 09:41:18 AM EST
    ...MT's post.  She's not talking about AQ coming to get her.  She is talking about the Saudi tradition of keeping women "in their place" through violence and intimidation.  

    I don't think... (5.00 / 1) (#121)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 09:43:14 AM EST
    that is what Tracy meant vml...I think it was a reference to honor killings, not murder by terrorist.

    In some parts of the ME, women are allowed to be murdered if they "dishonor" a man or their family name, in fact it is culturally encouraged.  Sick stuff.


    Thanks kdog,..... (none / 0) (#122)
    by vml68 on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 10:01:25 AM EST
    I obviously interpreted her post very differently. I did not make the connection to honor killings. As for the ME, I spent a large part of my life there and still have a lot of family in various ME countries including Saudi Arabia so I am familiar with how women are treated there.

    As for honor killings although they do occur in Saudi Arabia, they are very rare in the other gulf countries. Honor killings are mostly prevalent in the poorer muslim countries. Pakistan, Afghanistan and even India are the prime offenders.


    Nah (none / 0) (#123)
    by squeaky on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 10:04:39 AM EST
    Military Tracy is too good a writer to be sloppy with a oblique reference to honor killings. Clearly she was snarkily referring to plane hijackers as that was the context.

    Rather hilarious if you ask me.


    It Is Called Snark (none / 0) (#124)
    by squeaky on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 10:12:28 AM EST
    And letting off steam, not literal. Seems quite appropriate to me and a hilarious slam a Saudi sexist pig.

    My husband would love talking to you (none / 0) (#90)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:14:30 PM EST
    He isn't pleased with the current sim programs used in target I.D.

    Well, BTD is (none / 0) (#9)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:17:23 PM EST
    blogging against Feingold's op ed from Oct.  

    There's a lot of brouhaha over the (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 01:56:44 PM EST
    New York Post's Chimp cartoon today, and a lot of stuff on the web calling it "inadvertent" racism.  It seems pretty purposeful from this cartoonist after some of the homophobic cartoons he has posted (and about which I saw little in the progressive blogosphere):

    Jeez (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:26:32 PM EST
    the cartoon was sent to me saying how disgusting it was and I couldn't figure out why.  I thought it was a cruelty to animals thing.  

    The racism angle never occurred to me, probably b/c I don't associate African Americans with chimps...and while the satirist could be racist and homophobic, the latter does not imply the former or there would be no homophobia in the black community...

    I think this was just a failed attempt at humor.  The satirists are having a hard enough time as it is w/o Bush and trying to figure out how to poke fun at Obama w/o being called racist, so I wouldn't want to see more creativity snuffed out--I think we can all use a good laugh these days...  



    The common denominator is that homophobes (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:32:48 PM EST
    tend to be jacka*es and jacka*es are more likely to be racist.  This guy likes to push these buttons over and over in his attempt at humor.  Maybe it's racism or homophobia, or maybe it's just his attempt to push buttons by flirting with them.  But, really, his product is all we can be sure about, and those cartoons I link to show a lot about what this guy considers "humor."

    Your point about the African American community defies logic, IMHO.


    I don't get the humor/joke in that cartoon... (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by vml68 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:44:15 PM EST
    What am I missing?
    As for the racism aspect, are you saying he is likening Obama to a chimp and that makes it racist?  Bush was called/compared to a chimp quite often which was a great disservice to the chimps IMO. They are incredible animals.

    Do you see no difference between (5.00 / 3) (#23)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:06:49 PM EST
    likening Obama or his policies to a chimp, and calling Bush a chimp?  Really?  Have you seen racist cartoons from the early 20th century likening African Americans to primates?  

    I.e., primates other than humans, (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:08:09 PM EST
    such as chimps?

    Of course I do (none / 0) (#27)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:17:45 PM EST
    I'm not sure what you're getting at--how do we know the intentions of the satirists?  How do we know he's a racist and not criticizing Obama's stimulus, as many here at TL have done.  

    Again I did not think was funny, but my "assumption," and that's all I have, is that he/she was trying to say Obama's plan was foolish and therefore he was a clown or a chimp--that politicians are monkeying around.  That was all.      


    I don't think what (5.00 / 3) (#100)
    by BackFromOhio on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 09:26:10 PM EST
    the satirist was thinking is the important perspective necessarily; although I do think the cartoonist knew himself to be pressing riske buttons, to me the most important issue is that the cartoon feeds into inappropriate stereotypes & is deeply hurtful.  Are there no limits? I also blame the Post for allowing the cartoon to go to print.

    Well, if we're going to to look to history (2.00 / 0) (#28)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:43:09 PM EST
    then you probably know that, well before that, it was the Irish whom cartoonists portrayed as apes.

    Of course, Obama is Irish.  So maybe this cartoonist was mocking that heritage of his.

    Just saying -- going to intent is, as lawyers here might attest, getting into difficult areas.

    Stick with effects as the argument, maybe.


    You can't be serious (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by andgarden on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:41:35 PM EST
    What depicting a person as an ape means TODAY is pretty unambiguous. This is not 1850.

    Of course. But the comment (none / 0) (#51)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:05:26 PM EST
    was a historical reference, and I was showing that would be frail ground for a good argument -- and when there are better ones.

    Speaking for me only.... (none / 0) (#26)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:17:39 PM EST
    once they swear in, they are all the same color...grey.  As in the "Here Come The People in Grey".

    I have not seen the earlier cartoons.... (none / 0) (#31)
    by vml68 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:10:45 PM EST
    Do you see no difference between likening Obama or his policies to a chimp, and calling Bush a chimp?

    No, I don't. If it was used exclusively for Obama then I would probably see it as racist.



    And since all of us, white, black, brown, or yellow, have descended from apes may be we need to stop being so sensitive and just acknowledge that sometimes we all resemble our ancestors!


    "Stop being so sensitive" (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:32:20 PM EST
    is really a last resort argument.  It doesn't address anything.

    Cultural context is everything.  Amnesia doesn't solve anything.


    It's a "blame the victim" attitude (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by andgarden on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:40:22 PM EST
    that I don't have much patience for.

    I agree with you on this.... (none / 0) (#38)
    by vml68 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:45:22 PM EST
    Stop being so sensitive is really a last resort argument.  It doesn't address anything.

    But sometimes it feels like we are looking for things to get offended about.
    My comment is only in reference to this particular cartoon. It makes absolutely no sense to me and I don't get how it implies that Obama is a chimp.


    Educate Yourself (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:53:13 PM EST
    Hope this in not too shocking, considering that you had no idea that Blacks have been historically dehumanized by depicting them as our less than human ancestors.

    Igorance is not an excuse (5.00 / 3) (#43)
    by samtaylor2 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:56:04 PM EST
    The "racism" is not that Obama the person is  chimp.  But that given our countries cultural history (and people that claim they didn't know are lying) using the image of a monkey to describe a black person is just plane wrong.

    Why did (most) people recognize that the monkey in the cartoon was Obama?  The answer is a black man just passed the stimulus package.  It wasn't because the stimulus was just passed.


    If this cartoon (none / 0) (#47)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:59:00 PM EST
    came out at any other time, maybe I would question the intentions more.  But the news has been all a buzz about the chimp mauling and subsequent shooting by police.  In this case, I think that context is particularly important.  

    Yes, just like (none / 0) (#42)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:54:04 PM EST
    "Get over it."

    Agreed about (none / 0) (#20)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:55:21 PM EST
    the disservice to chimps :)

    But how else can the cartoon be considered racist unless it's b/c the people who are offended think the artist is likening Obama to a chimp b/c he's black/biracial?  

    Again, I didn't think it was--I'm just reacting to this faux-controversy...  


    Did you bother to look at the cartoons (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:14:09 PM EST
    in my link?  My point is, it's hard to give the benefit of the doubt and call it a fake controversy with a repeat offender.

    How does it defy logic? (none / 0) (#21)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:00:03 PM EST
    While yes, people who are prejudiced normally don't like all minorities, but I was reacting to the fact that one can't assume (while it could very well be true) that the artist was racist because he/she had previously drawn homophobic cartoons.  

    If all homophobes are racist, then doesn't that mean that you can't be a minority and be homophobic?  We obviously know that is not the case.  


    Where did I say or assume that all (none / 0) (#22)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:05:04 PM EST
    homophobes are racist?  That's where logic fails.

    That a person may not care about making a homophobic remark will make it more likely, however, that he does not care about making a racist remark.


    Well, I didn't see the cartoon (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:07:51 PM EST
    at your link.

    My absolutely adorable grandson is called "monkey" and has a variety of monkey stuffed animals, drawings, books, articles of clothing, etc. with both the image and the word boldly showing. I know for a fact the image of a monkey is not racist in all cases.

    I have no idea what the artist intended, but I'm not going to expell good, necessary energy making the worst possible scenario the only one available to consider.


    Yes, an actual link to it would help, so (none / 0) (#55)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:18:46 PM EST
    here it is.  At least, I think this must be it from the clues in comments here.  

    You will see that it is disturbing for far more than its historical references.

    Shooting to kill the author of the stimulus bill?  That is just so obviously disturbing, as noted, that it's odd that discussion has been diverted into other problematic points about this imagery, too.  All are worthy points for discussion, but -- this is calling for shooting the bill's author?!


    No, it's not. (none / 0) (#58)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:24:06 PM EST
    But -- this is calling for shooting the bill's author?!

    No? (none / 0) (#61)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:26:25 PM EST
    What's all that splashy stuff around the chimp?

    No, (none / 0) (#62)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:30:45 PM EST
    this is not calling for shooting the bill's author.

    You may need to read (none / 0) (#68)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:45:35 PM EST
    the caption, what the cop says in the cartoon's balloon.

    Then come on back.


    Thanks for the link, Cream (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:34:56 PM EST
    don't know what to make of it, but I do know that it is gruesome enough to be able to draw more than one negative intent from it.

    I agree with you about the shooting of the stimulus "author", and since it was created by something like 500+ politicians, I don't plan to spend much time trying to analyze it. Like I said, the image is gruesome.


    Thanks for the tip. (none / 0) (#74)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:59:20 PM EST
    No, this is not calling for shooting the bill's author.

    Yes (none / 0) (#59)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:25:09 PM EST
    Lynching would have been too obvious. Delonas obviously took advantage of current events to elide his overt racism with 'hey this has nothing to do with black people' just the news.

    If the New York Post had any decency (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by tigercourse on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 06:02:57 PM EST
    (of course it doesn't) he'd be out the door. Unless he wants to claim he was portraying Ben Nelson and Collins (he wasn't), that cartoon is blatant.

    Wow (3.00 / 4) (#32)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:30:21 PM EST
    Reading this thread where all the Hillary fanatics somehow do not see a problem with depicting Obama as a chimp. And to suggest that it is exactly the same as calling Bush a chimp or the Irish apes.

    Seems that many here are blinded by their dislike of Obama or are completely insensitive to the history of racism in the US against Blacks.

    AmaZing, but not so surprising.


    I was a HIllary supporter in the primary. (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:32:52 PM EST
    Me Too (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:39:24 PM EST
    But obviously you are not a fanatic. It is astounding that some who call themselves progressives would not condemn this overt racism.

    A "macaca" moment. (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:49:11 PM EST
    Similar To Some Here (none / 0) (#44)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:56:20 PM EST
     Sen. George Allen (R-VA) now says he never heard the word Macaca before. He made it up. Must have been in his DNA memory.

    Sorry (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:02:54 PM EST
    It doesn't strike me as overt racism either.  We just have a difference of opinion.

    Personally, I (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by BackFromOhio on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 09:18:55 PM EST
    was appalled, as were Afr-Am colleagues. Their hurt was quite deeply felt.

    Yep, I'm with you. (none / 0) (#56)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:20:50 PM EST
    I'm a late-comer to this "cartoon"  brouhaha, I only just googled the cartoon a few minutes ago.

    Being only peripherally aware of yesterday's CT chimp incident, my first thought looking at the cartoon was that this made some (very lame) reference to shooting a monkey like they shot King Kong.

    Then, the more I thought about it, I agreed with those claiming racism.

    But after more thought it seems a lot more plausible that the cartoon was a reference to how lame the stim is in the view of the author - iow, "A monkey could have written it."

    Pretty much an unfunny "cartoon" no matter how you look at it...


    I think (5.00 / 2) (#65)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:34:53 PM EST
    that it is something people can legitimately disagree over.  I just showed it to a colleague - a conservative, the sort who rolls his eyes at most claims of racism - and his first reaction was "yeah, that's in pretty poor taste."  When I explained to him the other side of the case, he was like "I guess I can see that, but it's not a very clever cartoon either way."  Fair enough.

    I posted not because I want to defend the cartoon or claim that I'm right and everyone else is wrong, but simply to object to the notion that anyone who doesn't find this racist is some kind of nutjob.  This is not, you know, the Obama sockmonkey or the Hillary nutcracker.  Sometimes it's legitimate for people to have different opinions.


    Well (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:56:22 PM EST
    One reason that some racist japes are called dogwhistles is that they are meant to make racists chuckle while others simply scratch their head. It does not make them any less virulent and destructive.

    I understand (5.00 / 4) (#76)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 06:08:42 PM EST
    but I am not scratching my head.  I completely understand the argument that this is a racist cartoon.  It's just that in this particular case, I personally am not buying it.

    But I would also point out, ever so gently, that I am not sure the cartoon can simultaneously be a dogwhistle that goes over the heads of most everyone except the knuckle-dragging racists, and also be an example of overt racism so blatant that only the most deranged Obama-hater could ignore it.


    Yes (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 06:23:33 PM EST
    Obviously I have contradicted myself, perhaps in a misguided attempt for emphasis. From my point of view it is overtly racist.

    Given that, I am surprised that after pointing  that there is a historic (and quite recent) legion of racist depictions comparing blacks to apes, that you would still think the image not racist.

    And yes, I guarantee you that people like Sen. George Allen would hear this particular dogwhistle loud and clear.


    Please rest assured (5.00 / 1) (#80)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:07:29 PM EST
    that I do not live in some cave where I am unfamiliar with the monkey reference.

    I just don't agree with you that in this cartoon, the intent is that the monkey represents Obama.  I respect that you feel otherwise.  It's not that I'm sitting here thinking, "okay, this guy has depicted Obama as a monkey, but I'm sure he meant nothing by it."  I simply interpret the cartoon differently from you!


    How does one decide when it's legit? (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:44:25 PM EST
    Sometimes it's legitimate for people to have different opinions.
    And when it's not?

    I decide, of course (5.00 / 2) (#94)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:38:51 PM EST
    It's always "legitimate" (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:40:57 PM EST
    for people to have opinions, because it's what people do.  

    Sometimes, though, they may be societally "illegitimate" opinions -- but then, that depends upon the definition of the particular society or social milieu, too.  So one decides it's legit or not based on one's own opinions, those of one's social milieu, clearly.  

    What probably is being talked about here actually are people's expressions of their opinions.  Those, we can constrain -- and we often ought to do so.  But then, why would there be blogs? :-)


    Objection! (none / 0) (#72)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:58:04 PM EST
    I posted [...] simply to object to the notion that anyone who doesn't find this racist is some kind of nutjob.
    Assuming facts not in evidence. ;-)

    What did it mean to you? (none / 0) (#83)
    by samtaylor2 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:26:19 PM EST
    Maybe as a black guy I am too senstive to a Black man being connected to an monkey?  I am not asking that in a sarcastic way.

    Well (5.00 / 4) (#96)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:41:53 PM EST
    My interpretation is not that the monkey is supposed to be Obama.  To me it's a cartoon of the chimp story that has been all over the news here, with a little political cheap shot thrown in about how the stimulus sucks.

    If the monkey were supposed to represent Obama, frankly the fact that he's depicted as a chimp isn't nearly as problematic as the fact that he's depicted lying dead in a pool of blood.  But I simply don't believe it was intended that way.

    I don't think you're oversensitive, though.  We just interpret it differently.  I'm not the kind of guy to go around saying, "Pfft, black people, how come they see racism everywhere."


    No Problem (5.00 / 0) (#104)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 11:32:33 PM EST
    I understand your position. It is just that I would think you would get that it is clearly over the top racist.

    The chimp is clearly OBama unless I missed something about the chimp that was shot was involved with signing some sort of stimulus something or other.

    Many were concerned about Obama being assassinated. It is clear that many racists think of Black people as monkeys, sub human. That is the white supremacist plank.

    To imagine that this cartoon is only about some chimp that was just in the news seems absurd, but I guess there are other viewpoints, and you have another viewpoint.


    Oh, And (5.00 / 0) (#107)
    by squeaky on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 12:01:23 AM EST
    Just in case you did not get to read the paper version of the Murdoch rag known as the NY Post here is a tidbit to put the cartoon in perspective.

    A photo of the President signing the stimulus bill appeared in Wednesday's Post, one page before the cartoon.
    Readers who turned the page went right from Obama photo to the chimp drawing.

    NY Daily News


    Yeah, yeah (5.00 / 5) (#109)
    by Steve M on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 12:10:23 AM EST
    Look, I've tried really hard to be polite in this thread, but you just do not get it.  It is not that you need to make just one more logical argument and suddenly the scales will fall from my eyes and I'll acquire the previously unknown talent of identifying racism.  I completely understand why some people see this as a racist cartoon, I personally do not, end of story.

    Tried Hard To Be Polite? (none / 0) (#117)
    by squeaky on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 08:57:47 AM EST
    Why? Does he fact that many see this as overt racism and the fact that you do not see this as racist at all make you angry?

    Beware the simplistic (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:12:18 PM EST
    restatement of the actual comments below, Joe.

    Btw, the link is to a good site.  Thanks.


    Wow, Squeaky as usual you know my (5.00 / 3) (#57)
    by vml68 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:21:45 PM EST
    motivation and can speak for my thought process without having met me.

    I am assuming that in your infinite wisdom you already know that as a foreigner in this country, I cannot/did not vote, contribute, campaign, etc for Hillary. I guess that must make me a prime candidate to be a Hillary fanatic because her presidency was going to affect me.... how?

    You must also know that my family is as diverse (in terms of color and being spread out all over the world) as Obama's and so I guess that means I really hate seeing that represented in the highest office in this country (and arguably the world).

    And last but not least, what would I know about racism after all my grandfather and his family might have been way "blacker" than Obama but they were not in the US. Oh no, they chose to be second class citizens in their own country thanks to their benevolent colonizers. The fact that they were called monkeys and a lot worse is why I must be so completely insensitive to racism. Or could it be that I have learned that not everything and anything is racist.

    AmaZing, but not so surprising.

    Yes, you always amaze me but you never surprise!


    Whatever YOu Say Boss (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:40:15 PM EST
    But one thing for sure is that most immigrants of all shades of blackness do not escape racism against African americans whose families have been here for hundreds of years.

    The first thing most immigrants learn is that African Americans are on the bottom of the pile and that in order to climb the ladder of upward mobility they must distance themselves from american blacks.

    There is an excellent book that examines the racism between AA's and recent West Indies immigrants. Black Identities: West Indian Immigrant Dreams and American Realities by Mary Waters.

    And here is something from a Jamacian blogger who talks about the issue.


    It must depend on where they settle (5.00 / 3) (#82)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:24:22 PM EST
    The first thing most immigrants learn is that African Americans are on the bottom of the pile and that in order to climb the ladder of upward mobility they must distance themselves from american blacks.

    #1. I highly doubt that's the first thing most immigrants learn. #2. Some parts of the country are more blatant than others, and I'm in one of the more subdued, accepting areas in the west. #3. You spend much time on an Indian Reservation lately? No ethnic group is more pushed to the bottom than the Native Americans. Until I worked with the Yavapai's in AZ I had never, ever worked with a Native American. Nor had I encountered them in my neighborhoods, clubs, public social establishments, school, church, or anywhere else. I can go on and on non-stop with what their plight in this country is.


    I am not denying that racism exists... (none / 0) (#79)
    by vml68 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 06:32:48 PM EST
    I just did not see it in this cartoon.
    While most immigrants of all shades of blackness do experience racism, quite a few of them in turn are also racist towards "african americans"

    The first thing most immigrants learn is that African Americans are on the bottom of the pile and that in order to climb the ladder of upward mobility they must distance themselves from american blacks.

    My experience on this issue is limited to what I know from family/friends/acquaintances, basically my small cirle.
    One of the reasons for the distance between immigrants and american blacks is the belief that most american blacks are looking for handouts rather than working hard to get ahead. That they use the past history of slavery as a reason for all their misfortunes. I am not defending this view merely stating what I have heard quite often.
    A few of the people with these views have come from grinding poverty in their native lands and have managed to succeed here despite language/culture/education barriers by working two or three jobs, living in dismal conditions and saving every penny to ensure their kids get a good education and have the advantages they never dreamed of having for themselves. So they feel that if they could make it here against very high odds then anyone born here should have no problem. And thus in their minds that equates to american blacks being lazy and is one of the prime reasons they try to distinguish themselves from american blacks.  Again, I am relating a view/story I have heard on quite a few occasions rather than arguing the rightness/wrongness of it.


    I have heard a lot of stupid stories as well (5.00 / 3) (#84)
    by samtaylor2 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:27:48 PM EST
    Doesn't mean I need to share them.

    Samtaylor...... (none / 0) (#114)
    by vml68 on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 08:37:12 AM EST
    I was replying to Squeaky's comment and his reference to racism between AA's and west indian immigrants.
    When I replied I had not clicked on the link to read what the jamaican blogger had to say. I just did and the similarities between what he had to say and what I said makes me feel like I plagiarised his blog.

    You might feel what I had to say and what he had to say or other immigrants have to say are stupid stories and that we should not share them OR you could try to recognize that as offensive as you might find these perceptions/beliefs about AAs they are quite pervasive in the immigrant community. Unless we talk or share how do we know what people are thinking, why they think those things and what can be done to address those negative perceptions.


    Samtaylor.... a question for you (none / 0) (#116)
    by vml68 on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 08:51:45 AM EST
    You wrote that I should not share my stupid story and I am assuming that as an AA you took offense about the negative perceptions and generalizations in them.  

    Earlier in this thread Military tracy has a story about Saudi pilots and she says that they are "ALWAYS" disrespectful. I do not see any comment from you telling her to not share her story. Is it OK with you if people generalize and say offensive things about other nationalities and races, as long as it is not the AA community?


    Ugh (none / 0) (#6)
    by andgarden on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 01:59:38 PM EST
    I guess that problem is that someone who cares actually has to read the New York Post.

    Well, a lot of people I know read Page (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by Joelarama on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:17:38 PM EST
    Six, but don't get a bad impression of me by association.

    This guy (Delonas) (none / 0) (#46)
    by lilburro on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:58:00 PM EST
    is just disturbing, period.

    The reference is so obviously racist, it's really jarring.


    There's the argument. (none / 0) (#53)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:08:40 PM EST
    Not his intent, not historical references, etc.

    That it has this effect on at least some viewers is the argument -- against his editors running it, at least.  (Lots of awful cartoon ideas get trashed, fortunately, in the earlier editorial meetings.)


    Well, artists (5.00 / 2) (#73)
    by lilburro on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:59:02 PM EST
    and "artists" will always find a way to wiggle out of whatever interpretation you would like to apply to their work.  In political cartoons, the game is often, "are you thinking what I'm thinking?"  

    I didn't know anything about this pet chimp on the loose.  I do know something about the stimulus bill, and who signed it though.

    Seems to me Delanos is a d*ck.  Sketching this cartoon, the thought that people would think that was Obama must've crossed his mind.  And that apparently did not bother him.


    As a man, (none / 0) (#66)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:36:06 PM EST
    I am offended at the overt sexism of the marriage license cartoon.

    Hey (none / 0) (#69)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:45:41 PM EST
    Get your isms right. That was gay bashing not sexism..

    Although to be pc, and give you your space, I hear your pain regarding the sexism, even though I do not see it..



    Well, now that you make me think of it, (none / 0) (#77)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 06:11:20 PM EST
    not only is the cartoon sexist, but, as the guy in the cartoon is clearly Caucasian, it's also racist.

    I won't try to be a mind-reader (none / 0) (#92)
    by vicndabx on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 08:20:10 PM EST
    I can't possibly know the intent of the artist and his editors.  I can look past the obvious racist interpretation and see that this could simply be, monkey=person w/o a lot of brains coming up w/a silly plan.  However, in light of the obvious racist interpretation, ....one has to wonder what the editors were thinking.  These folks ain't idiots, they wouldn't be editors if they were.

    If one considers that in the best case scenario, maybe the Post was trying to test the public's tolerance for this type of stuff now that we have a black president, a written editorial would've been a much better way to start/continue the dialogue about race relations in America and  simultaneously left a lot less open to interpretation.  There was no need to risk offending a bunch of people.

    If, in the worst-case scenario, they were simply trying to stir up controversy in the hopes of selling a few papers, well, there's a circle of he!! awaiting these folks.  


    About that scary turn 'murca into yerp (5.00 / 4) (#70)
    by scribe on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:52:49 PM EST
    (that's Europe, for those of you who pronounce properly) story the Republicans are tossing around.  You know the one.

    Lemme tell you.

    Years ago, I lived in Yerp, courtesy of wearing a green suit given me by an Uncle named "Sam".  It was a nice place.  Sure, the people spoke funny and the signs were hard to read and gas cost more and the food wasn't as big.  But, after a while, you got the hang of it.  They had clean streets that were nice and smooth and you could go really fast 'cause the potholes weren't there to break your axle, smiling people, schools that weren't falling down*, solidly built houses and got a month of paid vacation every year.  You could take a train just about anywhere, which I kinda liked 'cause I like trains and going places and it wasn't too expensive.

    A few years later, after I got back to the States, I dated someone who was from Yerp.  One day, my friend got sick and had to go to the hospital in the big city where we were living at the time.  The nice, overweight lady behind the counter asked - before anything else (even "what's wrong") - "how are you going to pay for this?"

    My friend's answer?  "I'm Swedish."  (Sweden's a place in Yerp with lots of blond people.  I haven't met an ugly one yet, neither.)

    I watched my friend hand over a card, about the size of a credit card IIRC and saw a wave of wonderment come over the nice lady behind the counter.  She had never seen anything like that.  She called her boss and the boss hadn't either.  They futzed around a while and made a couple calls to the billing department and then that was the last anyone heard of something called a "bill" or "paying".  I still don't know where that disappeared to.

    I kinda got to thinking.  Why is it that I, living in the richest, most successful country in the world, evah, couldn't do that?  

    And why do I have to deal with no paid vacation?  I haven't had one in over 15 years.

    And why do I have to play bob, weave and bounce  on highways that are more pothole than patch?  Every night, I have to drive over one that will catapault my car into the air if I go more than 10 mph over it.

    And why can't I take a train to get where I'm going, so I can read or something, instead of sitting stuck in traffic behind some idiot who broke their car on a pothole?

    But, the Republicans tell me that, if Obama succeeds, we'll all be like in Yerp and that's why he must be made to fail.

    I dunno.  I'd kinda like it to be like in Yerp.

    *  In fact, the buildings in worst shape were the ones your 'murcan soldiers lived and worked in.

    Back when I were a twerp (none / 0) (#81)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:07:57 PM EST
    I used to play rugby almost year 'round here in Murca with a whole bunch of Yerps.

    They described going to a public health care doctor in Yerp as like going to the DMV here in Murca.

    That the person behind the counter looked at you not as a sick or injured person that needed help, but as a stack of paperwork. And the bigger the stack you were, the less that person behind the counter wanted anything to do with you.

    Years later I worked for a company that had a Canadian division and because some of our customers worked on both sides of the border the Canadian sales reps and I were in pretty constant contact.

    One of the Canadian sales reps blew out her knee playing softball, and one year later, still limping around in a brace, she still hadn't gotten high enough on the list to get an MRI.

    And, as she put it, she didn't "know the right person" such that she could get herself bumped up ahead of the others.

    And that's a country with about 1/20 our population.

    I no longer work for that company and have since lost touch with her, but I sure hope she's gotten that MRI by now...


    Health care is always rationed (5.00 / 0) (#112)
    by scribe on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 02:55:59 AM EST
    so it is not a matter of "Whether" it is rationed as much as it is of "How the rationing is accomplished".

    As I sit here responding to your diversion, I am still recovering from a nasty fall down some exterior steps two weeks ago and have a tooth that needs extraction (and has, for well in excess of 6 months).  In the former case, I was thankful to have not broken anything, though I probably have a low-grade tear of the rotator cuff of my dominant arm.  I say "probably" because, not having insurance and being effectively living from hand to mouth, I have not been able to even think about making an appointment with a doctor to have it examined, let alone treated.  I don't have the cash to pay for it.  My local emergency room, stressed financially by all sorts of issues, pretty much will not see a person unless (a) they're brought in by ambulance, (b) there is visible bleeding or (c) they are actively convulsing/jonesing.  

    So, on that injury, I have been relegated to home remedies and recognizing that if there were a "permanent" injury requiring treatment beyond heating pads or massage (I don't take pills, period), it won't be fixed "properly".

    As to the tooth, in reality, the dentist told me a dozen years ago that it needed to come out because its' misalignment made all sorts of problems pretty much inevitable.  I didn't have the cash and it stayed put.  I had to have one other removed last year - it had a hole the size of a pencil eraser and the nerve exposed.  But, still, I had to save for several months from other parts of my budget to get enough scratch together to pay the dentist.

    Needless to say, the discomfort has left me, pretty much unavoidably, in a foul humor for some time.  So long, as a matter of fact, that I have a hard time remembering being otherwise.

    So, the rationing of health care in America is accomplished by pricing and forcing those of us who have not been able to earn (or inherit) enough to do without.  But the care is still rationed.

    And your argument is a diversion.


    You wrote your story about the Yerps, (none / 0) (#115)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 08:40:48 AM EST
    I wrote mine.

    Seems fair.


    Local schools... (none / 0) (#2)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 01:44:18 PM EST
    going to the dogs...literally.

    Lets just merge the Dept. of Education and the Dept. of Corrections into one entity and be done with it.  

    another LI school (none / 0) (#7)
    by Nasarius on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:02:38 PM EST
    A few years back, they'd search your backpacks as you entered the school during AP testing weeks. The justification being that if they got a bomb threat, they wouldn't evacuate and interrupt the tests. Of course, the search was cursory at best, so it was really just absurd and unpleasant security theater.

    School parking lots also will be part of the dogs' turf. Murphy said if a student refuses to allow a car to be searched, the district will either call police or ban the vehicle from the lot.

    And the police will do what, exactly, besides attempting to intimidate the kid into consenting to a search? Ugh.

    Really, what is this supposed to accomplish? You keep drugs out of schools wow, good for you. The kids will just take it as a minor inconvenience and do everything elsewhere.


    :) I'll be chuckling the rest of the day on that (none / 0) (#8)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:06:27 PM EST
    comment, kdog!

    I held my breath for years while putting a very high IQ, funny, creative, social and big boy through public school. My constant assessment of how public schools handle the boys, particularly, was they were preparing them for one of two places in the world after graduation: military or prison. They can really put out the lights in the brighter kids.

    (Before anyone screams, I admire the military volunteers completely...it is the strict adherence to clocks and authority that I'm referencing.)


    Better to laugh than cry... (none / 0) (#12)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:26:01 PM EST

    Reading, writing, and arithmetic are no longer the big 3...its how to follow rules without question, how to submit to authority, and how to master standardized tests now.


    Indeed it is (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 02:40:52 PM EST
    Unfortunately, not enough parents stand up to the schools for the things they do so horribly wrong. I felt such a surge of relief when he graduated! I wrote multiple letters to the superintendent, the district department heads, every state, and federal legislator from my district and came to be known by all as the parent who stood firmly in her child's corner. They finally backed off just to keep me away.

    He's now a happy, mentally healthy and successful young adult in pursuit of his creative dreams.


    Ah (none / 0) (#48)
    by jbindc on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:01:09 PM EST
    Gotta blame the states with their tests and especially No Child Left Behind for that nonsense.  Many teachers would love to bring back critical and creative thinking to their classrooms.

    Indeed... (none / 0) (#85)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:32:03 PM EST
    and many manage to in spite of the state mandated curriculums...I had a few and they're the ones you never forget.

    This is frightening... (none / 0) (#29)
    by CST on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:55:11 PM EST
    Especially since it could effectively also kill the morning after pill in this state.

    North Dakota half way to passing ban on abortion saying "a fertilized egg has all the rights of any human".

    Senate still has to pass it.

    Yet, a miscarriage doesn't (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:57:20 PM EST
    require a death certificate to my knowledge. They are so obvious in their intent. This has everything to do with the mother and nothing to do with the fetus.

    Nor (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by jbindc on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:04:36 PM EST
    can you claim a fetus as a dependent on your taxes.

    what will be, then, the status of (none / 0) (#60)
    by DFLer on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:25:37 PM EST
    fertilized eggs in test tubes?

    If only (none / 0) (#63)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:31:29 PM EST
    Our baby is due next month.  I could sure use the extra deduction on last year's return!

    Congratulations! (none / 0) (#110)
    by BrassTacks on Thu Feb 19, 2009 at 01:24:09 AM EST
    Having a new baby is THE BEST thing that can happen.  Such an exciting time of life.  Having children was the best thing I ever did.  They've made me laugh every day since they were born.  Nothing brings more joy to home than children.  So, Enjoy every minute, even the very tired ones.  

    As I read your link (none / 0) (#64)
    by samtaylor2 on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 05:31:33 PM EST
    I don't think the morning after pill would be affected.  The morning after pill does not cause abortions.  The morning after pill is a way to prevent fertilization.  

    That being said, people who are this anti-choice probably don't see the difference.


    Iraq (none / 0) (#30)
    by lentinel on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 03:57:10 PM EST
    Obama used to mention the cost of the war in Iraq.
    It is still costing the same.
    500,000.00 dollars a minute.

    Assuming the U.S. costs (none / 0) (#40)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 04:50:14 PM EST
    of being in Iraq and Afghanistan are "off the books," are we broke, or not?

    I ask myself that.... (none / 0) (#87)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 07:37:28 PM EST
    a hundred times a day...are we broke or not?

    I know broke...and this ain't broke.


    Top Chef anyone? (none / 0) (#99)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 09:21:11 PM EST

    No spoilers (none / 0) (#102)
    by andgarden on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 10:16:55 PM EST
    but IMO there was good news and bad news--in that order.

    I'll agree with that... (5.00 / 1) (#103)
    by Anne on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 10:30:04 PM EST
    it's going to make for a great finale, I think.

    Assuming the right person wins, that is!


    CNN has (none / 0) (#101)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 18, 2009 at 09:33:35 PM EST
    Sebeluis in lead for HHS.


    Not surprised, but I doubt she can bring us UHC...