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September 13, 2009

Maureen Dowd is making sense

I have to admit, MoDo brought her A-game for her column on Rep. Joe Wilson. Dowd found the courage to state explicitly what so many of us have been thinking:

The normally nonchalant Barack Obama looked nonplussed, as Nancy Pelosi glowered behind.

Surrounded by middle-aged white guys — a sepia snapshot of the days when such pols ran Washington like their own men’s club — Joe Wilson yelled “You lie!” at a president who didn’t.

But, fair or not, what I heard was an unspoken word in the air: You lie, boy! [NYT]

Read the whole thing.

It's one thing when liberal bloggers say that Joe Wilson has issues with a black man being president, it's quite another to see it spelled out on the New York Times op/ed page.

Whenever some egregious incident makes headlines, we're told this is an opportunity for a national dialogue on race that never happens. Finally, Wilson managed to shock the established media into broaching the subject.

(Update) Just to clarify, I'm not crediting Dowd with any special insight. She is mainstreaming an idea that's pretty taboo inside the beltway. There's a deep, deep reticence for anyone in the political or media elite to call a fellow Villager racist. Pat Buchanan recently wrote a column defending Hitler and blaming the allies for pushing him to start up the death camps. Hitler. Yet Uncle Pat's plodding along the talk show circuit like nothing every happened.

Dowd's going to take some heat for this. It's no big sacrifice for someone in her position, but she did go out on a limb, relatively speaking.

via cfrost.

Comments

The article is okay - it would be much better if someone other than MoDo wrote it. But it his two of my pet peeves about the subject.

First, if a Democrat had yelled "You lie!" at Bush during the 2003 state of the union speech, it would have been a good thing. President, schmesident - there's nothing bad about speaking truth to power, disrespectful as it is. The problem with Wilson isn't that he disrespected power - it's that he didn't speak the truth.

And second, South Carolina was right about the 1832 secession, politically and economically if not legally. The tariffs it protested were a giveaway to Northern industrial barons, who fought tooth and nail to keep them there. They served no economic function - from 1846 to 1860, under Polk's free trade regime, the US economy grew at the same rate as in the previous era of protectionism. The only function they served was enriching the proto-robber baron class.

>>It's one thing when liberal bloggers say that Joe Wilson has issues with a black man being president, it's quite another to see it spelled out on the New York Times op/ed page.

C'mon. It's not another thing, it's the same old thing. For 40 years or more the NY Times op-ed page has been owned by the left.

I must say, though, that I am glad that Obama is President and not McCain. If McCain had been elected he would have been pursuing an essentially liberal agenda without a peep of protest from the Tea Baggers. Details of the agenda would have differed but overall the negative impact of a McCain agenda would have been as bad as or worse than the Obama agenda. The difference now, with the Tea Baggers and Wingnuts all riled up, is that there is opposition, unprincipled as it may be, to the leftist agenda.

I hope that the Tea Baggers and Wingnuts start thinking things through, about why they oppose the Obama agenda and how this agenda does not differ significanlty from Bush's before him or the agenda that McCain ran on. They will then realize that the greater enemy for the past 20 years has been in the Republican party. When they turn their wrath against these GOP traitors then we can start going about dismantling the leftist agenda of the left, maybe then we will have true traditionalist renaissance, which would be good for America and liberty at large.

I'm fine with yelling at the president. It's yelling ridiculous lies that I have a problem with.

Do you think that if Colin Powell (R) were president, a House Republican would have shouted "You lie" at him during a joint session of Congress?

I don't.

Ugh! Read and understand your Daily Howler.

Dowd is, was and always will be seriously stupid.

Liberals accusing all those who oppose Obama as racists are coping her ignorance because it makes them feel oh so special about themselves. Remember, its just like how the media supported Team Obama in the` fun primary days by not saying boo when false, idioti Obama supporters went around accusing Bill, Hillary, Bob Kerrey, Andrew Cuomo and anyone who supported or voted for the Clintons as being race baitors too. (How fun watching Mo slander Bill Clinton with this accusation again in todays column! Like old times!)

If a blogger like you ACTUALLY believes that MO Do is EVER on the side of Progressives - you really oughta look back to 2000 and read about what she said about Al Gore. (*Y'know the guy who was close personal pals with both Mr. Cash and the Howler's Bob Somerby)

Did you know that the far right accused Clinton of murdering dozens (Vince Foster?) and that Bill and Hill were actual sleeper agents for the Soviets recruited back in their hippty days. This had nothing to do with "racism", it has to do with RW hate and RW extreme messaging.

THE RW OPPOSE OBAMA BECAUSE HE IS NOT ONE OF THEM - NOT BECAUSE HE'S 1/2 BLACK!

Please wise up.

Btw, my crush on you has now gone dormant.

bang- bang!

Who said MoDo was on the side of the progressives? I said she wrote a good column.

She's a good wordsmith when she puts her mind to it and this time she managed to clearly and forcefully state an obvious truth that's not obvious inside the beltway. That's what she's good for. Now that Maureen Dowd has said it, it's self-proclaimed "serious" people will feel entitled to repeat that opinion out loud. She's mainstreaming a very basic idea.

It was a very stupid column and Im sure a very pleasing column to those who like to believe that voting for and supporting Obama makes them a better or "purer" form of citizen. (Remember thosee total morons who said that it was the Clintons who used Race in the primaries?")

And seriously, No "serious" person takes Dowd seriously at all.

And she's "mainstreaming" a VERY stupid idea, which after all, is this "wordsmiths" M.O.

Again, get thee to the Howler...

and boy - are you calling this wrong

" she managed to clearly and forcefully state an obvious truth that's not obvious inside the beltway."...

Mo never writes ANYTHING that isnt MSM blather....do you forget that it was the MSM who helped push the obama camps constant charges of racism that started back in 2007?

lord...

its beyond sad, its ...bad...

Clinton did use racism in her campaign. She tried to bring up Obama's past drug use, and her surrogates said he was not black enough. For institutional reasons civil rights leaders were about evenly split in the primaries, while blacks voted overwhelmingly for Obama.

Tim, do you want to give me an argument for why this column is bad, or is it just axiomatic for you that anything Maureen Dowd writes is crap. There is a taboo against coming right out and saying that elected officials are being racist. It's not the same as repeating racial innuendos from the campaign trail.

Let the primary go. Jesus. Hillary's kicking ass as Secretary of State.

Good for Maureen Dowd, of course. But why haven't there been more columnists writing in the same vein? Joe Wilson is an admiring protege of Strom Thurmond, one of the worst racists of all time. He has all the credentials for prestigious membership in the KKK. That anyone would doubt for a minute that he outburst was not racist motivated is just plain ridiculous.

You've got to be kidding me. Right on Tim. Ok, someone said something that you think is taboo and then you fawn all over it. Give me a break. She wrote something moronic.

Tell me, doesn't the fact that 95% of African-Americans voted for Obama smack of racism. They voted for hime because of his race. If no one had any information about race of the candidates how likely is it that any one group would have given such a percentage of their vote to a single candidate?

Etc, before you start calling other people morons, get your own facts straight. Black voters have turned out overwhelmingly for Democrats in presidential elections since the 1960s. Lyndon Johnson got 94% of the black vote in 1964. Al Gore got 90% of the black vote when he ran for president, John Kerry got somewhere in that ballpark. Since all previous Democratic presidential candidates have been white, that blows your theory out of the water. Sorry.

Ok so, Obama in '08 gets a higher percentage of the black vote than Lyndon Johnson did in the Civil Rights Era! My point still stands.

And Dowd remains, in my opinion a race baiting moron.

So, it was racist of blacks to vote for Lyndon Johnson in 1964? How racist of them to vote for equal rights! Would you say it was uppity of them, too?

Let me spell this out really carefully: You accused black voters of being racist because they broke 95% in favor of Obama. You assumed that the only reason 95% of black voters would vote for a black candidate is because that candidate is black and they are racist.

What you didn't bother to check was that African Americans vote overwhelmingly Democratic and have since the 1960s.

I cited an unbroken stream of elections from 1964 to the present day where the black vote went overwhelmingly Democractic--usually 90% or more. Ninety percent of black voters are Democrats, zero percent of Democratic presidential nominees have been black until 2008.

Did it ever occur to you that African Americans are more likely to vote Democratic because they perceive the Democratic party as, you know, less racist?

Sounds like you're putting words in my mouth. I said no such thing. I fully understand and appreciate why blacks would vote for Johnson in '64 and why/how that led to the historically high percentage of the black vote for the Democratic party. What I was saying was that in an environment where oppression of blacks is far less than in 1964, and with a greater population and voter turnout, that it strikes me as biased that blacks would vote in greater proportions than during the Civil Rights era for a black candidate.

As for assumptions, Dowd's whole article is based on assumption and hyperbole. There are absolutely no facts to support her assertion. There are plenty, her own words, to support the assertion that her statements were racist. You think that this is great, in the absence of fact, largely because it goes against some taboo. Come on.

Etc, I'm not putting words in your mouth, here's what you wrote:

Tell me, doesn't the fact that 95% of African-Americans voted for Obama smack of racism. They voted for hime because of his race. If no one had any information about race of the candidates how likely is it that any one group would have given such a percentage of their vote to a single candidate?

Want to take it back?

It wasn't just in 1964 that blacks voted overwhelmingly Democratic, it's every presidential election between now and then. Mondale got 90%, Al Gore got 90% of the Black vote, Kerry got 90%. So, I answered your question. For the last 40-odd years its been common that at least 90% of the black vote goes Democratic regardless of the race of the candidate. So, the fact that Obama got 95% of the black vote is hardly evidence that his race was an overwhelming factor for black voters.

First vicious, race-baiting, MSM propagandist Dowd writes a stupid and meretricious column, then racist, anti-Semite Jimmy Carter says the same thing, and now racist, black nationalist, crazy negro Bill Cosby picks up the hate-drenched theme in a hysterical, shockingly wicked Facebook rant.

Oh Lord, we beseech thee, help the traditional, real Americans finally throw off the shackles of brutal, Obamanistic racial oppression.

You were putting these words in my mouth

"So, it was racist of blacks to vote for Lyndon Johnson in 1964? "

I said no such thing and don't want to take anything back. Too bad you had no response to my comments regarding fact and assumption.

You misunderstood. I didn't attribute that view to you, I asked whether you agreed, because that's where the logic of your argument would take you.

You said that racism was the only explanation as to why blacks would vote 95% in favor of Obama. I supplied an alternative explanation: Black voters always break overwhelmingly Democratic. So, a 90% margin is about what you'd expect for any Democrat, white or black.

Then you said, well in 1964 black people were voting for the Civil Rights Act. So, you agreed that black people voted on the basis of legislation to advance their interests, not the race of the candidate. (Seeing as LBJ was a rather pale gentleman.)

If it was racist for blacks to turn out 95% for Obama (like you said), then was it racist of blacks to turn out 94% for LBJ or 90% for Mondale or 90% for Gore, or 90% for Kerry? Of course not.

I'll give it one more shot. I didn't say the racism was the "only" explanation as to why such a large percentage of blacks voted for Obama. What I was trying to say was two-fold.

First, in 1964 the total popular vote was 70,639,284 of which 61% was Democratic. In 2008, the total popular vote was 131,458,805 of which 52% was Democratic. So the total vote was almost double that of 1964 and about 8,000,000 more than in 2004 when Kerry garned the 90% of the Democrat's 48% of the total vote. As one would expect, the larger the population, the harder it is to gain a larger percentage of that population's vote (it's easier to obtain 90% of 100 people than 90% of 10,000,000). Kerry's numbers demonstrate that relative to the 1964 numbers.

Second, in 1964, due to the Civil Rights movement, you would expect an inordinately large percentage of the black population to support the party that was pushing the legislation. In 2008, there is no such environment. Yet statistics show that blacks turned out in greater proportions than ever including '64.

When you put these elements together, I make the assertion that what drew out so many more blacks was the historical prospect of electing a black president. Not unreasonable, however it appears driven by race and therefore racist.

I can't seem to get this sent on the NYT site:
Maureen…Bravo for your brave defense of the President. You nailed it when you revealed to all of us that the Obama critics are motivated by nothing more than racism. They can’t deal with an African president and are having a tantrum. But, where do we go from here? This won’t be the end of the racist behavior. It will bog down the President’s many initiatives, health care being only one. First, all attendees at a presidential speech must be strictly patrolled. I’m including Congress in this. A Secret Service agent could surely be used to reject a loud, obnoxious critic from a gathering. Second, isolate and identify those who would criticize the president. It is hypocritical to think that racism or vindictiveness is not at the base of the complaints. We elected this man with a clear majority. Criticisms from the right must be dealt with in a much tougher way, we are not wimps! They had their 8 years to screw things up. Let’s institute some rules with real consequences. This includes issuing summonses and yes, arresting those who would critique our president. A recorded history of dissent could be used later to marginalize these boors. We are letting the rabble take over if we are not strong and punitive. God bless you Maureen and our president. It makes me feel so good to know that in 50 years these white bigots and their progeny will be a distinct minority. Then maybe the ideals of our founding fathers can find fruition.

As one would expect, the larger the population, the harder it is to gain a larger percentage of that population's vote

Why, do democracies with more people have fewer landslides than democracies with fewer people?

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