Sunday, January 27, 2008

Montel Williams gets it right

I'm not a big fan of Montel Williams but he makes an excellent point here. This is something that students in my media and press classes bring up. Why is it that the media spent so much time on celebrity news and not enough time on more serious issues? That is not to diminish the tragedy of Heath Ledger's death. It's very sad. It's probably a safe bet that the reason the folks on Fox News don't want to discuss the tragedy of a soldier's death is because it reminds the public of why it is they've been questioning the Iraq war and the administration's handling of it.

It's funny to me how these right wing people accuses anyone who questions the war of not supporting the troops but when someone tries to recognize the tragedy of an American soldier being killed those same right wingers don't want to hear it. The Fox people in the above video go down a list of excuses for why there is a paucity of media coverage on casualties. And we can't forget Sinclair broadcasting refusing to broadcast the Nightline episode eulogizing members of the military killed in Iraq. You would think that episode would be something they would support. Then again, "support the troops" is just a political slogan to some people.

(h/t reddit user zewar)

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Declaring preemptive war on John McCain

A pretty strong argument could be made that John McCain is the GOP’s strongest general election candidate. For some reason, which I can’t fathom, the conservative base really seems to dislike him. Maybe the fact that I (and others like me) don’t have a gut reaction against him in the way I do at the mention of…say…Dick Cheney, is one explanation.

Whatever the reason for the base hating him, he’s their best chance at keeping the White House. The Clintons have to know that there aren’t any red states that go blue for Hillary, against McCain. With that in mind, it seems to me that Team Hillary is launching a preemptive attack to nip the McCain candidacy in the bud.

First, the New York Times did Hillary the double favor of endorsing her while giving McCain the kiss of death. Now we have what amounts to an attack from Bill Clinton. The former president says, "[Hillary] and John McCain are very close…they like and respect each other." If the conservative base needed one more reason to distrust McCain, there it is. Of course, McCain didn’t “like and respect” Hillary enough to say anything when a woman at one of his events referred to Hillary as “the bitch.”

This is why the Clintons win elections. They’re tough and smart. While they pound away at Barack Obama, they kill McCain with kindness. It’s why the Democratic Party, unfortunately, seems to need them. Without Clinton the Democrats would probably have had twenty-eight years out of the White House. Maybe this year we can find a way to win without them.