Sunday, May 25, 2008

For God's Sake, Can We Just CALM DOWN?

The primary season's waning days have me thinking.

Well, that, and a raft of what one hopes are misstatements and the rantings of out of control staffers coming from the Clinton Campaign. Let me preface all this by saying, the reason the somewhat unhinged statements are coming from Sen. Clinton's and not Sen. Obama's campaign are twofold. First, she's lost and both she and her supporters know this; the difference being that some of her supporters seem unwilling to...well, see the title. Second, she has Bill on her campaign, and while Bill was an excellent President, his will to win regardless of cost actually exceeds hers and because he has a sense of grievance exceeded only in some Republican circles which seems to have taken hold. Thus he's lunging around like an untethered cannon on the HMS Victory. (Just click the freaking link...I can't be you guys SOLE source for unwarrantedly obscure military history)

Let's start with Hillary And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. As reported in the New York Times Blog, it seems as if Hillary really wasn't, you know, suggesting someone might do what hundreds of white supremacist's have expressed an interest in doing. Nevertheless, as Olbermann points out: for the love of GOD, you invoked Kennedy's assassination to justify staying in the race, even tangentially? Are you nuts?!?

This may be what takes her down. The only way she walks back from this, frankly, is to go through June third, and then bow out. There's no way she ends up with a Veep shot after Friday. Not that that seems to have been her idea. And if she pushes this thing all the way to the convention, the highest office she'll ever hold will be senior senator from NY. She gets out of the race and stays out after June third, maybe she gets majority leader, maybe she gets plum committee chairs, maybe she gets a shot at the White House again in 2016 or if the Dem's (god forbid) lose this year, in 2012.

But the only way she has a play this year, at this point, is to deliberately upset the applecart. I don't know if the excitement lately has been with or without her consent (with Bill it seems to have been without), but the RFK comment clinched it. RFK, Jr. can excuse her. The party can't. Either she or Obama lose in this of all years after she does something like that and she'll be lucky if she's allowed to run unopposed in the NY Senatorial Primary in 2012.

Now, let's go to the great "sexism" debate. Look, I get it. I may have a penis, but I know a lot of women, and the ones who are Hillary supporters want this to be about sexism, rather than say...she ran a crappy campaign or she has negatives out the wazoo. Hillary's in trouble because of sexism. Therefore, people who don't vote for Hillary are doing it out of sexism.

Only thing is, you can make the exact same argument for Obama and racism. In other words, if you accuse those who never preferred Hillary of sexism, then if you never preferred Obama it's because you're a racist. You simply cannot have it both ways.

People don't vote for Hillary for a lot of reasons: because 20 years of Bushes and Clintons is enough (my personal reason), because with regard to obsessive secrecy she's second only to George W Bush, because you don't particularly trust her word (Mrs. Pedant's reason), or possibly because you're sexist. It could be any NUMBER of reasons, only ONE of which is sexism.

And finally, for the argument that sexism is worse that racism in this country, I have to say, I have no freaking idea. To me, it seems like an argument about whether drowning or burning is a worse way to die. For the love of god, they're both horrible. Trying to parse out which one is marginally viler is ridiculous. I suspect that women think sexism is worse, blacks think racism is worse, black women no doubt split about equally on which is worse and black lesbians KNOW that homophobia is worse than either sexism or racism. Who CARES?

I do understand. There are a lot of women who want a woman president for what are blatantly obvious reasons. Some of them are old enough and smart enough to figure that the odds of getting another woman candidate before they die are greatly lessened if Obama gets the nomination and wins. After all, if he wins, it's 2016 before another woman runs (since if he wins he is the nominee in 2012 so win or lose in 2012 the next time a woman has a shot is 2016 because it will be a LONG FREAKING TIME before the Repub's run a woman rather than a white dude), and who other than Hillary is available in the short term? So it's "OMFG, Hillary's a victim of sexism and Obama would never be where he is unless he were black." Which argument, by the way, is as foolish as saying OJ got off because he was black (true story...I once heard a guy say that)...all those whites disproportionately jailed proves that theory. (Hint, that's SARCASM.)

Let's put it this way...until the 2004 convention, only Illinois residents knew about Obama. I can think of a couple female governors and senators that might run well off the top of my head. What do you think the odds are that someone somewhere we haven't even HEARD of can come out in 2016 and make a run? Because I want a woman president someday soon. I'd like to point the Wee Pedant to a real flesh and blood figure.

I'd just prefer that the flesh and blood female President I point to not get impeached for the high handed way she continued the Bush secrecy fetish while alienating half the country with her "win at all costs" public style.

2 comments:

really mad professor said...

I agree with you pretty much down the line, here. I'll admit that I've spent the last 7 + years wondering why I ever complained about the Clinton administration, but during the last three months I've been thinking: "Oh, this is why I was complaining." The fact is--and we've actually discussed this before and in other ways--I always knew what Bush and Co. were capable of. On the afternoon of September 11 2001 I called one of my slightly less Mad professor friends and I said that the events of the day had just given the Bushies "license to burn to whole world." Watching the "i'm the vicyim so now I can victimize you" behavior of the Clinton has sickened me. I feel like I've been betrayed. I couldn't be betrayed by monsters like Dick Cheney (though the Human race has been)--but I can be betrayed by someone who claims to care about the things that animate my politics, and then turns around and behaves as the Clintons have. I've felt a nostalgia for the Clinton era--but Nostalgia is generally the enemy of thinking. I want a new party--a progressive party interested in constructing a new world--not a old party interested in fighting for the 60's divisions again. I also don't like the whole "you can have the democratic party back when you pry my cold dead fingers from its throat" philosophy that has dominated the Clinton campaign. Also: Fuck!

Clark said...

I'd hate for a post to be devoid of profanity. I think I managed, but you restored balance to the universe.