Sunday, September 07, 2008

Republicans and Obama

I get regular e-mails from the Republican National Committee criticizing Barack Obama and other Democrats. None has ever said a kind word about anyone, even about a Republican. They are designed strictly for Democrat bashing. In fact, I once replied to one, asking: "Just curious: Do you guys ever say anything positive about anything? And if not, how do you live with yourselves?" They didn't reply, but the e-mails keep coming.

Lately, the e-mails have been on an Obama vs. Obama theme, dredging up alleged inconsistencies in public statements he has made. The topic doesn't interest me much because it's always possible to find inconsistencies if you sift long enough through all of the words of someone who has been running for president as long as Obama has, and especially if you aren't too picky about context.

But it seems that the RNC cares less and less about context. Most of the statements I have been getting aren't even contradictory in their own terms. Here is this morning's, for example:

Today, Obama Claimed He Would Buck His Party By Increasing The Size Of The Military:

Obama: "I've said that we need to increase the size of our military, which politically, if it got to the floor, probably would pass. But there, as you know, [are] a whole bunch of folks on the left who think that that is a waste of money. I think it's important for us to do." (ABC's "This Week," 9/7/08)

But In October 2007, Obama Told The Caucus For Priorities That He Would Cut Military Spending:

Obama: "I will cut tens of billions of dollars in wasteful spending. I will cut investments in unproven missile defense systems. I will not weaponize space. I will slow our development of future combat systems, and I will institute an independent defense priorities board to ensure that the quadrennial defense review is not used to justify unnecessary spending." (Sen. Barack Obama, Caucus For Priorities Response, 10/22/07)

Setting aside the dubious claim that Obama would "buck his party," where's the contradiction here? He wants to make the military larger while cutting waste and certain programs. Contradiction?

Here's another:

In His Interview With Bill O'Reilly, Obama Called Iran A "Major Threat":

Obama Called Iran A "Major Threat." Fox News' Bill O'Reilly: "Is Iran part of that component?" Obama: "Iran is a major threat." (Fox News' "The O'Reilly Factor," 9/4/08)

But Obama Has Said That Iran Does Not Post A Serious Threat To The United States:

Obama Said Iran Is "Tiny." Obama: "I mean think about it. Iran, Cuba, Venezuela - these countries are tiny compared to the Soviet Union. They don't pose a serious threat to us the way the Soviet Union posed a threat to us." (Sen. Barack Obama, Remarks At Campaign Event, Pendleton, OR, 5/18/08)

The RNC, apparently, can't understand the difference between saying "Arnold Schwarzenegger is tiny" and saying "Arnold Schwarzenegger is tiny compared to Mount Everest."

UPDATE: The context makes the first item even worse for Republicans. The reference to future combat systems should have been to Future Combat Systems, a program that McCain also has opposed.


Anonymous said...

I have been a Republican all my life. I voted for W once. The second time, I thought a person who made that many mistakes should have been fired. I also hoped that if we had voted for Kerry, 1) Kerry combined with a Republican congress would have made for good government, and 2) the Republicans would have realized we needed to get our act together and would have done so by now.

But this is 2008. And I look back on the last few years not as a member of the “angry left” but as a member of the justified “angry middle”. I see a corrupted justice department. I see an attack on individual privacy and habeas corpus. I see our loss of morality and use of torture. I see our loss of foreign policy/strategy and now just preemptive unilateral striking and invasion of countries that did not threaten us….something that we abhor when Russia does it to Georgia. I see cronyism. I see corporatism with CEO salaries 400 times the average worker, companies running our government. I see a shrinking middle class that capitalism depends on.

As for Iraq, must we destroy a village in order to save it. We all know war is not the way to spread democracy. What exactly is victory, and at what cost?

Each one of us thinks we are a moral person. I think bombing innocent civilians is immoral. I think judging a person’s privacy is immoral.

We must remember that we are a nation of laws, not men. And our laws are not based on morality, but justice. We have a justice system, not a morality system…and that system is in jeopardy.

McCain really made my mind up when he picked Palin to replace him. There are 20 other Republicans more qualified to be President so this is a campaign pick, not a governing pick (when he promised to put country first and pick the most qualified person to replace him). With her, I can’t imagine a president that does not believe in evolution or wants to teach creationism in science school, or who bans books.

I am inspired by Barack Obama. We must think differently about government and the future. I loved Ronald Reagan, and I think he would be the Obama of today. In fact Obama sounds more like him than McCain does. Reagan was a centrist. He did not want to be in the Middle East. He was a diplomat, not a warrior. He also said he did not know when life began. And he did not ever talk about Jesus. He wanted government to stay out of our private lives. He was thoughtful, not temperamental. He wanted to expand the middle class. He raised taxes when the deficit became too big. He transformed the way we think about government when we needed to…and we need to again.

Barack has just proved his ability to lead and organize the most successful campaign organization in history and his record is strong, it is listed in detail on his website so don’t believe the McCain/Palin attack lies that he hasn’t written laws or worked across the aisle on important legislation.

Comparing her to him is just silly. His campaign organization is almost bigger than Alaska. Chicago, and his duties in the state Senate, is bigger than Alaska. He has been traveling the world since he was born and she doesn’t even have a passport. He has travelled the country talking and listening to all of us for two years. She has 60 days to learn from professionals….something every woman I know could do.

No, I compare McCain and Obama. And as a Republican woman, I choose Obama.

A. Francis
Laurel, Montana

Anonymous said...

the far right is really cranked up lately on the blogs and it is all negative attacks on obama. racism is starting to show up and even being tolerated on many of the right wing blogs. i suspect it is being encouraged by the GOP tacitly and silently of course to foment fear and swing the polls toward Mcsame. this is unamerican and un human and should be vehemently condemned whenever and wherever it is found by all americans - not to get obama elected (although is suspect it will help in the end) but because we are americans first and we do not tolerate racism.
it is a shame that lincoln's once proud GOP appears to be silently approving hate/racism by these cowards.

Jay Larry Lundeen said...

And the DNC is "love central?" Such hypocrisy.

Anonymous said...

Dear Jay...

How many emails are in your inbox with crazy "rumors" about John McCain.

Jeremy Corsi--the same guy that wrote "Obamanation"--a book that HumanEventsOnline (Ann Coulter, Pat Buchanan, etc) are promoting--once wrote that McCain had connections to Al Qaeda. The Democrats certainly didn't promote that book. But these shadow groups are sure out promoting the craziest crap--and people are buying it.

I had a lady tell me that she's skeptical because Obama hasn't talked about where he worked in college--so how did he pay for it? Gee--the same place the rest of us did--student loans--which he's talked about. But the fact that he had student loans is the reason not to vote for him?

I've been a Republican--but the hypocrisy, outright slander and lies have completely turned me off. There are states where the GOP is actively seeking lists of foreclosed houses and sending out "address confirmation cards" and using them to send lists of voters to be purged from voter rolls. That's the kind of dirty campaigning I never wanted to be associated with.

I'm hoping there's not too much of that in Montana, but I know that the email smears are being aggressively circulated.

Barack has said that he's trusting in the American people to be smart enough to see through this stuff. The Republicans are betting that they're not.

We'll find out on November 5.