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Biden Wins Veepstakes!
August 22, 2008 11:12 PM   Subscribe

VP newsfilter (because someone’s got to do it) The Times just confirmed that the Obama Campaign has chosen Delaware’s 65-year-old Senator Joe Biden as the presumptive nominee’s Vice Presidential running mate. With decades of foreign policy experience (including a recent stint in war-torn Georgia), and as the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, can Biden help pull the ticket out of a neck and neck tie with Senator John McCain

Biden twice underwent surgery for brain aneurysms in 1988. He fully recovered.

Oh yeah, he's also been called a gaff machine.

While David Brooks is in favor, some other dude is not

"He was just another Joe, Bidin' his time...."
posted by punkbitch (457 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
I was sort of hoping for Bill Richardson, but I'm okay with Biden. Not sure what it does for B.O. electorally, though - old white guys from the Northeast are sort of an albatross for Dems, no?
posted by fingers_of_fire at 11:09 PM on August 22, 2008


I get it. Hopeful new face with cynical old greaser. Good luck.
posted by telstar at 11:10 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Far as I can tell, old white guys have been an albatross for the Dems.
posted by Caduceus at 11:10 PM on August 22, 2008


*sigh of relief*
Nice to not have to worry it would end up Clinton.
posted by Hugonaut at 11:11 PM on August 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


AWESOME. Over the years I've watched C-Span I've always been impressed with Joe Biden. This man will make a GREAT VP.
posted by rmmcclay at 11:15 PM on August 22, 2008


WHAT THE?

I signed up to get an email as soon as they made this announcement. I have no email. Where is my email? WHERE, BARACK, WHERE?!

/shakes fist at Obama
posted by brain cloud at 11:16 PM on August 22, 2008


How do you pronounce Biden?
posted by Archers of Loaf at 11:17 PM on August 22, 2008


*Phew* I was really worried McCain was going to carry Delaware.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:17 PM on August 22, 2008 [13 favorites]


buy-den.
posted by stavrogin at 11:19 PM on August 22, 2008


Is this really wonderful?
posted by Mblue at 11:19 PM on August 22, 2008


How do you pronounce Biden?

Bye-denn
posted by brain cloud at 11:19 PM on August 22, 2008


Obama just lost my (puny) vote. Which brings me no joy....
posted by dawson at 11:20 PM on August 22, 2008


Bye-denn
Buy-den


I love being an English teacher: I'll never run out of work!
posted by mdonley at 11:21 PM on August 22, 2008


Biden twice underwent surgery for brain aneurysms in 1988. He fully recovered.

That ain't nothin'. When he's VP, he'll get one of them superdoctors that's keeping Cheney alive. Or maybe they're called sorcerers. Whatev.
posted by brain cloud at 11:21 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


At least Biden is articulate and bright and clean.
posted by Sailormom at 11:23 PM on August 22, 2008 [24 favorites]


Or maybe they're called sorcerers. Whatev.

I believe the term is "necromancers."
posted by nasreddin at 11:23 PM on August 22, 2008 [44 favorites]


Oh I can't wait to see the reaction from those batshitinsane posters over at Shakespeare's Sister. It will be glorious!
posted by Riemann at 11:23 PM on August 22, 2008


veep veep!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:24 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Great ... so we get the guy who thought this was a good idea.
Fuck that.
posted by Arbac at 11:25 PM on August 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


brain cloud: WHAT THE?

I signed up to get an email as soon as they made this announcement. I have no email. Where is my email? WHERE, BARACK, WHERE?!


When they started offering first word of VP pick via e-mail and etc. I knew that would not work out too well considering once it leaks it becomes a flood, no matter which side it refers to...
posted by JoeXIII007 at 11:25 PM on August 22, 2008


veep veep!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:25 PM on August 22, 2008



AWESOME. Over the years I've watched C-Span I've always been impressed with Joe Biden. This man will make a GREAT VP.


Yeah, he's been the voice of a lot of outrage at the utter incompetence and corruption of the last 8 years. It will make a really interesting race if they don't make him tone down the vitriol. Too bad he voted for the war. I would also have liked to see Richardson, but if Smart Political Advisers think Biden works strategically, I think he's a decent choice.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:25 PM on August 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


I WAS SUPPOSED TO GET A TEXT MESSAGE.

total crap i was actually really looking forward to my text message, now its ruined.
posted by Addiction at 11:26 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


He was born in Scranton, so that should help with PA.
(just fine with a not-faith-based VP candidate as I don't recall this being declared a theocracy just yet).

Good lord... I just checked his page. He was elected to the senate when he was my age (29)!?! I can barely make it to work on time and he was in the freaking senate?

So, is his book worth picking up?
posted by Kellydamnit at 11:28 PM on August 22, 2008


Well, he has always said nice things about Obama's hygiene:
"I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy," Biden said. "I mean, that's a storybook, man."
Oy.
posted by deern the headlice at 11:28 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


YEAH, WHERE'S MY EMAIL, BARAK?
posted by zardoz at 11:29 PM on August 22, 2008


that's what happens when you take a minute or two to actually work at crafting a beefy post.

The great thing about MetaFilter, though, is that the better, beefier post will stick around unless the other one has a massive amount of comments already.
posted by Mikey-San at 11:30 PM on August 22, 2008


In October 2002, Biden voted for the final resolution to support the war in Iraq. He has long supported the Bush administration's war effort and appropriations to pay for it, but has argued repeatedly that more soldiers are needed, the war should be internationalized, and the Bush administration should "level with the American people" about the cost and length of the conflict.

Political positions of Joe Biden
posted by nickyskye at 11:30 PM on August 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


I can barely make it to work on time and he was in the freaking senate?

It's the kind of place where that kind of thing is actually a well-honed skill, if you think about it.
posted by dhartung at 11:31 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't know if "sorry I missed that vote, I had to beat the water dungeon boss in zelda" would fly there any better than it would with my boss.
posted by Kellydamnit at 11:33 PM on August 22, 2008 [12 favorites]


Some random thoughts:

- I like how Biden's got McCain beat in terms of Senate service by nearly a decade. What was that about experience, again?

- Biden actually advised Kerry to choose McCain as his running mate last time around. Sure, McCain has been bodysnatched since then, but still... awkward.

- Obama bin Biden? *groan*

Also, the official McCain camp response:

"There has been no harsher critic of Barack Obama’s lack of experience than Joe Biden. Biden has denounced Barack Obama’s poor foreign policy judgment and has strongly argued in his own words what Americans are quickly realizing – that Barack Obama is not ready to be President."

In other words: One of Barack Obama's harshest critics has just been welcomed as political partner and public advocate. Change, change, change.
posted by Rhaomi at 11:33 PM on August 22, 2008 [8 favorites]


At least it's not Bayh (or Hillary).

I was hoping for Sibelius, but I can live with Neil Kinnock Joe Biden.
posted by orthogonality at 11:33 PM on August 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


I've always found Biden a little off-putting, but a couple of bios and personal accounts I've read about the guy in recent days have warmed me to him greatly. He's a little clumsy and overtalks, but I think he's a genuinely genuine guy, a true straight arrow who still commutes home daily to be with his family. Knows his stuff, works hard.

Also he's gonna punch Mitt Romney in the face in the debates. Can't wait.
posted by argybarg at 11:34 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


some other dude is not

Is Joe the guy who just saved a fortune on his life insurance?
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 11:35 PM on August 22, 2008


What if...

...each nominee of the two main parties were given the chance to pick their opponent's running mate?

I have a feeling that the first couple presidencies after this rule would be utter clusterfucks, and then they'd realize they had better start working together so they didn't look like utter morons in the VP's future runs for the presidential office.

Just a thought, anyhow.
posted by Kickstart70 at 11:35 PM on August 22, 2008


In other words: One of Barack Obama's harshest critics has just been welcomed as political partner and public advocate.

Because Biden was right.
posted by Brian B. at 11:36 PM on August 22, 2008


Oh, I like that Brooks piece. Nice.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 11:37 PM on August 22, 2008


A real American Hero. GO JOE!
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 11:38 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


I honestly never had any heavy favorites going into the whole VP-picking game, I just unabashedly love Obama so much and want him to be president so badly that he could have picked an old stained sock to be his running mate and I'd still vote for the man.
posted by brain cloud at 11:39 PM on August 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


Have we all so quickly forgotten Jonathan Chait's case against Delaware?

The organizing principle of Delaware government is to subsidize its people at the rest of the country's expense. While tolls represent the most obvious of the state's nefarious methods, Delaware also utilizes its appallingly lax regulation of banks and corporations to enrich itself while undermining its neighbors. Indeed, Delaware's image as small and inoffensive is not merely a misconception but a purposeful guise. It presents itself as a plucky underdog peopled by a benevolent, public-spirited, entrepreneurial citizenry. In truth, it is a rapacious parasite state with a long history of disloyalty and avarice.

What has Obama done?
posted by gerryblog at 11:45 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Looks like the MSM beats the Obama-web-powered-news-text-message-pigeon thing. Zing!
posted by zpousman at 11:46 PM on August 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


If someone had to post this, punkbitch is an excellent username under which to have done so.
Personally, I will be voting for someone who is not not an anti-war candidate, kthnxbye.
posted by finite at 11:47 PM on August 22, 2008


1988
2004
2008

rah
posted by Mblue at 11:48 PM on August 22, 2008


So was Biden part and parcel of this whole Georgian fiasco? ("Georgian" works on so many levels!)
posted by telstar at 11:48 PM on August 22, 2008


gerryblog: I knew I never trusted Delaware. No one has ever explained who Del is, or why he's gotta be so fucking aware all the time.

I'm sorry. I'll go now.
posted by Caduceus at 11:48 PM on August 22, 2008


Biden will make a great VP because of the Pun potential. Was he just Biden his time? Perhaps he was just too busy playing with his Dick Chain-ey.
posted by agress at 11:49 PM on August 22, 2008


Biden's positions as reported by On The Issues
posted by LobsterMitten at 11:50 PM on August 22, 2008


...work at crafting a beefy post.
...better, beefier post...
This one has a lot of good beef...
...lot of beef worth restating here.


Metafilter: It's What's For Dinner.
posted by stavrogin at 11:51 PM on August 22, 2008 [7 favorites]


Was Joe Biden the only guy in the senate with a child (adult son, IIRC) over in Iraq that argued passionately about supporting them and funding them properly?
posted by mathowie at 11:52 PM on August 22, 2008


Was Joe Biden the only guy in the senate with a child (adult son, IIRC) over in Iraq that argued passionately about supporting them and funding them properly?

His son, Beau, is Delaware's Attorney General, and a Captain in the National Guard. He will deploy in October, 2008 to Iraq (not in the line of fire, but as a JAG). Joe Biden voted for the war and funding, and repeatedly argued for more troops.
posted by Brian B. at 11:56 PM on August 22, 2008


Have we all so quickly forgotten Jonathan Chait's case against Delaware?

Okay, the argument is that we shouldn't vote for Obama because Delaware has toll roads (which can be driven around)?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:57 PM on August 22, 2008 [3 favorites]


His son, Beau, is Delaware's Attorney General, and a Captain in the National Guard.

Huh, I thought I remember him on the Daily Show a couple years ago making a big deal about how none of the other senators had kids in the armed services. I recall it being kind of a tough guy thing to say and he also used it to argue persuasively that republicans should listen to him in the senate since they weren't stepping up with their own family members. I recall he made it sound like his son was in the line of fire at the time, but I guess not.
posted by mathowie at 11:59 PM on August 22, 2008


I'm having trouble coping with this part:

As chairman of the International Narcotics Control Caucus, Biden wrote the laws that created the nation's "Drug Czar," who oversees and coordinates national drug control policy. In April 2003 he introduced the controversial Reducing Americans' Vulnerability to Ecstasy Act, also known as the RAVE Act.

So, great, a drug war guy? Someone make me feel better.
posted by naju at 11:59 PM on August 22, 2008


A profile of Biden by The New Republic from 2001.

Here's an odd, perhaps prescient, quote:
Biden's admirers spin his undisciplined chatter as a kind of John McCain-esque straight talk. Their shining example is the way, in 1992, Biden told Slobodan Milosevic to his face that he was "a damned war criminal and should be tried as one." Washington insiders "like people to speak in this kind of thought-speak where you talk for three minutes and don't say anything," says his former longtime chief of staff, Ted Kaufman. "That's not Joe Biden."

But Biden's mouth does him as much harm as good. " He gives Castro-length speeches," says one exasperated Senate staffer. In Democratic caucus meetings, he is famous for declaring, "I'll be brief," and then talking the room into a stupor. (Biden's colleagues have been known to burst into laughter when he makes that promise.) People who know Biden also warn that his loose talk often reflects muddled thinking. In his classic study of the 1988 presidential candidates, What It Takes, Richard Ben Cramer wrote, "Joe often didn't know what he thought until he had to say it." In one recent committee debate, recalls an observer, Biden delivered a rambling explanation of his opposition to a foreign aid amendment, by the end of which he had seemed to talk himself out of his original position.
posted by Class Goat at 12:03 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


I recall he made it sound like his son was in the line of fire at the time, but I guess not.

It may have been Senator Jim Webb (D), who previously had a son in Iraq, perhaps still.
posted by Brian B. at 12:03 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Ok, naju, he won't blow up the fucking world like McCain.
posted by Justinian at 12:04 AM on August 23, 2008


Damn, I was still hoping for Vice President Spider-Man.

I suppose I'll have to finally grow up now. Feh.
posted by homunculus at 12:04 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


Okay, the argument is that we shouldn't vote for Obama because Delaware has toll roads (which can be driven around)?

I think you're meeting it more than halfway when you call it an "argument." It was more of a quip.
posted by gerryblog at 12:05 AM on August 23, 2008


homunculus: How about Galactus?
posted by gerryblog at 12:05 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


Was Joe Biden the only guy in the senate with a child (adult son, IIRC) over in Iraq that argued passionately about supporting them and funding them properly?

John McCain's son has served a tour of duty in Iraq in the Marines. He returned home last February.
posted by Class Goat at 12:05 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Other notable links (while I am up):

Countdown's #1 Story for Friday somewhat confirms Biden as the pick by 9pm.
Along with this.
And this...
But this was one notable exception

Obama/Biden: Try saying that ticket 3 times fast, 5 if you're good.
posted by JoeXIII007 at 12:06 AM on August 23, 2008


It pains me to say this, but I'd have preferred HRC even. I promised friends that there was no way in hell he'd go with Biden.
pols are like lovers, ridiculously disappointing if you let your heart get all involved.
posted by dawson at 12:07 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I just got the text message.
posted by ofthestrait at 12:09 AM on August 23, 2008


I just got the text too. I think they deliberately waited to send it at 3 AM, and I love them for it.
posted by gerryblog at 12:12 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


Obama bin Biden? *groan*

Just wait until they remember Stalin's first name was also Joe.

"comrade Joe Stalin bin Osama bin Biden iz gonna fuckin bomb us... You fucking sheeple"

I just got the text message.

Me too. I figured they'd avoid sending it out at three in the morning. Anyone who signed up already knows or is asleep, guys.
posted by Uppity Pigeon #2 at 12:12 AM on August 23, 2008




I just got the text message.

STILL. NO. EMAIL.
posted by brain cloud at 12:15 AM on August 23, 2008


Uppity Pigeon #2 writes "'comrade Joe Stalin bin Osama bin Biden iz gonna fuckin bomb us... You fucking sheeple'"

Serious question: do freepers say "sheeple"? I thought that was a 9/11 truther thing.
posted by orthogonality at 12:16 AM on August 23, 2008


Surely this
posted by Brak at 12:17 AM on August 23, 2008


Speaking as someone from Delaware, woo-hoo!

Does this mean I'll get to see some cool helicopters?
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 12:17 AM on August 23, 2008


Uppity Pigeon #2 writes "Anyone who signed up already knows or is asleep, guys."

Ya, however probably the first news they see on waking will be this.
posted by Mitheral at 12:17 AM on August 23, 2008


Brak: "Surely this"

... is better than what's currently in the White House until November?
posted by Effigy2000 at 12:24 AM on August 23, 2008


gerryblog: I thought the Eater of Worlds was already Vice President, and the Decider is his herald.
posted by homunculus at 12:28 AM on August 23, 2008


Serious question: do freepers say "sheeple"? I thought that was a 9/11 truther thing.

Shit, you're right. That is definitely more of a conspiracy nut term. I need a YouTube commenter accent coach or something.
posted by Uppity Pigeon #2 at 12:29 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Haven't gotten it either. OMG twitter Obama doesn't scale!!1
posted by amuseDetachment at 12:29 AM on August 23, 2008


Serious question: do freepers say "sheeple"? I thought that was a 9/11 truther thing.

I first saw "sheeple" in the early 90's. Could go back much further.
posted by telstar at 12:30 AM on August 23, 2008


Not that anyone cares but the second "neck" in "neck and neck" in my post was supposed to point to this neck and not back to itself.
(also, The Times should be The Times and there should be a "?" after McCain).

some copyeditor...
posted by punkbitch at 12:34 AM on August 23, 2008


But can he spell potato?
posted by chococat at 12:34 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Not thrilled. Biden shoots his mouth off way too much IMO.

But I'm warming to it.
posted by bardic at 12:34 AM on August 23, 2008


Please, though...try to make it work...many of us in the rest of the world are crossing our fingers for you, while simultaneously fearing that you will somehow find a way to elect George Bush again.
posted by chococat at 12:38 AM on August 23, 2008 [22 favorites]


Biden shoots his mouth off way too much IMO.

I'll take mouth-shooty over evil and secretive any day of the week.
posted by brain cloud at 12:39 AM on August 23, 2008 [5 favorites]




Biden, Biden, he's our man
At least he won't invade Iran
posted by mosk at 12:42 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Shit, you're right. That is definitely more of a conspiracy nut term. I need a YouTube commenter accent coach or something.

I believe the term you're looking for is "fucking albanian".
posted by heeeraldo at 12:43 AM on August 23, 2008


me too braincloud.

hey, do y'all think that David Axelrose had to wake Obama up and say "Barack, the MSM scooped us...what should we do?" Or did he just go ahead and order the 3am txting on his own merits and let the candidate get his beauty sleep? I'm curious about the ins and outs of this shit.
posted by punkbitch at 12:44 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


WTF? I just got my text message. South side of Chicago and I gotta wait an extra half-hour for my already-a-foregone-conclusion newsflash?

That's it. I'm voting for Barr.
posted by felix betachat at 12:49 AM on August 23, 2008


"I'll take mouth-shooty over evil and secretive any day of the week."

Me, I was looking for "not a liability." Biden is.
posted by bardic at 12:51 AM on August 23, 2008


God, I hope it was sent out at 3am as a final, subtle back-handed slap to Hillary.
posted by nevercalm at 12:51 AM on August 23, 2008 [23 favorites]


punkbitch writes "hey, do y'all think that David Axelrose"

Since you spelled his name correctly in the link, that was intentional?
posted by orthogonality at 12:52 AM on August 23, 2008


I'm a slow reader so I've got to ask:

1) How did Obama come to choose Sen Biden and what were his reasons for doing so?

2) What kind of effect would Biden have on Obama's policy-making if he will ever have any at all?
posted by Pseudology at 12:55 AM on August 23, 2008


Oh yeah, Biden has some baggage, as evilangela pointed out in the last thread. He was politically generous to MBNA corp, which funneled money to his reelection, coinciding with his much needed help on a controversial Republican bill to help credit card companies do whatever they want.
posted by Brian B. at 12:56 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Biden shoots his mouth off way too much IMO.

...Cheney aims for the whole face.
posted by kid ichorous at 1:01 AM on August 23, 2008 [24 favorites]


Indeed, nevercalm...

"It’s 3am and your children are safe and asleep.
But there’ s a phone in your house and it is beeping.
It's 3am and your children are safe and asleep.
Who do you want sending a text message to that phone?"
posted by davejay at 1:02 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


yes, orthogonality, i've always wanted a forum for calling him that!

mind you, i think he's a political genius. between his planning and the one-liners that come out of bill burton (obama's press guy) - the campaign is like ... i don't know ... like an Apple product campaign.
posted by punkbitch at 1:02 AM on August 23, 2008


"He was born in Scranton, so that should help with PA."

You mean, that will help with Dunder Mifflin employees.
posted by clearly at 1:09 AM on August 23, 2008 [5 favorites]


I first saw "sheeple" in the early 90's. Could go back much further

Huh. I was all set to claim that sheeple is defintely a smug holier-than-thou term, but a quick check of Wikipedia makes it seem more nutjob right-wing in origin. Which is odd, because I mostly hear it from the sort of people Rik Mayall was sending up in the young ones, and a quick Google generally supports that (although there's a few Jew-hating/Holocaust denial sites in the mix).
posted by rodgerd at 1:11 AM on August 23, 2008


More on Hill-Thomas.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 1:12 AM on August 23, 2008


I can just see some jealous, oblivious, and tipsy boyfriend getting into an argument with his girlfriend because she received a text message from some strange man named Barack at 3:00am.. I know a booty call when I see one..
posted by mediocre at 1:12 AM on August 23, 2008


Who do you want sending a text message to that phone?"

OMG nuk bmbs x'ing pacfc. wat ur rspns?!
posted by felix betachat at 1:13 AM on August 23, 2008 [13 favorites]


And the etymology of "sheeple" reaches all the way back to the first angsty artsy teenager who realized that Sheep can be joined with People..
posted by mediocre at 1:13 AM on August 23, 2008


And the etymology of "sheeple" reaches all the way back to the first angsty artsy teenager who realized that Sheep can be joined with People..

I'm pretty sure he was Scottish.
posted by felix betachat at 1:15 AM on August 23, 2008 [22 favorites]


I wonder how many 10¢ text messages were sent and or received.

Obama is obviously in the back pocket of the telecommunications giants!



i kid.
posted by clearly at 1:19 AM on August 23, 2008


He was politically generous to MBNA corp, which funneled money to his reelection, coinciding with his much needed help on a controversial Republican bill to help credit card companies do whatever they want.

Wait, are you saying that a Senator in the United States carried water for an industry from his home state? Next thing you know, Barack Obama will mention ethanol in all his energy speeches just because Illinois is the number two corn producer in the nation behind Iowa or something!
posted by mightygodking at 1:21 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


So what was the actual text of the message? I hope it lived up to R. Mutt's expectations.
posted by =^^= at 1:25 AM on August 23, 2008


Barack has chosen Senator Joe Biden to be our VP nominee. Watch the first Obama-Biden rally live at 3pm ET on www.BarackObama.com. Spread the word!
posted by felix betachat at 1:27 AM on August 23, 2008


I know you kid, but 10¢?! AT&T charges 20¢/message now.
posted by redteam at 1:28 AM on August 23, 2008


Thanks, felix betachat.
posted by =^^= at 1:33 AM on August 23, 2008


Biden's role in the recent mess in Georgia is significant. Billmon has described it in significant detail.

That said, he's exactly the character that Obama needs to win an election... a significant compromise to the establishment.
posted by mek at 1:36 AM on August 23, 2008


The other real benefit of the text message announcement is that it helps Plouffe gauge the depth of Obama's support among the younger, non-landline using masses who are effectively invisible to pollsters. Taken alone, the number of those who signed up for an SMS announcement is probably not very useful, but I'll bet they're correlating those numbers with outside demographic data and prior poll results to augment their internal polling numbers from here on out.

To take one example, if there are a lot of cellphone users from an area with a rural university campus, they'll know to send more campaign workers and volunteers than the raw poll numbers might suggest. This sharpens their ground game, but I'll bet that's just the tip of the iceberg for these guys.
posted by felix betachat at 1:39 AM on August 23, 2008 [5 favorites]


Which is fascinating, given that the actual cost to them is a fraction of a cent.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:40 AM on August 23, 2008


I'm pretty sure he was Scottish.

COMEDY!
posted by mediocre at 1:41 AM on August 23, 2008


I read somewhere earlier today that the total number is in the millions. But that's chump change compared to the advertising and statistical goldmine that data will wind up being.
posted by felix betachat at 1:41 AM on August 23, 2008


It's also worth pointing out that willingness to go to war (as Biden has attempted to exhibit frequently) tends to be exactly the sort of thing that the establishment media respects, as Glen Greenwald frequently observes. Cynics should applaud this choice of candidate, as it's the most likely to win the election for Obama.
posted by mek at 1:43 AM on August 23, 2008


Too bad no one on Biden's staff knows html. There were so many &quote hanging tags on his website I couldn't continue reading it.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 1:48 AM on August 23, 2008


You Romans are crazy.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:51 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


i applaud Glenn Greenwald. always. that guy just gets it.
posted by punkbitch at 1:52 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


"This sharpens their ground game, but I'll bet that's just the tip of the iceberg for these guys."

I'm not sure Biden's hips will hold up throughout the course of the season, and I know he doesn't have the speed to turn the corner on the option.
posted by clearly at 1:53 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Strunk and White are very clear that when writing after 2am subsequent to a major political event, it's okay to mix a metaphor.
posted by felix betachat at 2:00 AM on August 23, 2008


I liked Webb, who would have been a great choice for the campaign and, I think, a very poor choice once sworn in. it's hard to be excited about Biden but then there weren't many exciting choices unless Obama was ready to make a risky choice like Sebelius or a Republican

obviously Biden helps the "inexperienced" angle, doesn't do anything for the women voters (boring old white windbaggy dude) but I truly think that his greatest asset as a candidate for the kind of campaign we're seeing since McCain went heavily negative and erased Obama's small lead, is that he is a mean, tough guy -- unless they drug him, I don't see him taking a lot of shit the way Obama has done in August

one hopes that he's not into getting slapped around by the Republicans -- I still think McCain will win but at least it will be nice to see the Democrats go down fighting, for a change
posted by matteo at 2:45 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


I don't like him. I don't like his bending over for VISA and MASTERCARD. I will vote for Obama, but I won't like voting for Biden.
posted by paddbear at 3:01 AM on August 23, 2008


I recalled a few days ago a piece about Biden in Harper's a long time ago, from a letter to the Village Voice from Terry Southern. Sure enough Harper's had it in their archive but just in PDF format. I sent it to one of the editors at Gawker who seemed to have developed a bit of an obsession with dredging up unsavoury moments from Biden's past, and so here it is.

Anyway, Biden seems like a decent choice.
posted by Flashman at 3:07 AM on August 23, 2008


Told ya so.
posted by fixedgear at 3:27 AM on August 23, 2008


So, great, a drug war guy? Someone make me feel better.

OK... (wiki):
Biden favors diverting drug offenders out of the nation's prison system. He is against making stricter laws for drug offenses but helped in the creation of a Drug Czar.
He also thinks kids should have easy access to violent video games. My kind of VP.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 3:27 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


homunculus: How about Galactus?
I thought Galactus was a Republican... He'd certainly do less damage than McCain.
posted by Grangousier at 3:31 AM on August 23, 2008


Color me eh. I was hoping for Sibelius, but I guess they figured a black guy and a woman would have been too much for people worried about Obama's blackness lack of foreign policy experience.
posted by longdaysjourney at 3:36 AM on August 23, 2008


Not thrilled, more of meh. I really hope his strategists have a plan, because the past month and a half have seen me go from 'Obama.. yeah!!!' to 'Obama.. oh, well! sigh'.
posted by cavalier at 3:46 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Biden is a fantastic choice, and ironically for a lot of the reasons people see as a negative.

In simplest terms, Joe Biden is an enormous asshole. And frankly, I love him for it. He's the type of asshole who's an asshole because he knows, right out of the gate, that he's smarter than you, that he knows more about a subject, and that he actually has the right idea about something. And damn it people it's time to finally try having someone who's not ashamed of that instead of pretending to be an idiot just to pander.

He has said a lot of stupid shit, but he's also said a lot of great stuff. Ezra Klein has a favorite video clip that's one of mine as well- in which Biden completely destroyed Rudy Giuliani while walking to his car.

Biden is the one person who might actually be able to deflect criticism appropriately- he's the only one who, when faced with attacks like "in 1995 you said you'd be thrilled to run with John McCain", he might actually respond with the equivalent of "well, yeah, that was before I found out John McCain was a fucktard." Hell, he might even say exactly that. And he'd be right.

He's everything necessary to be the ying to Obama's yang. Biden is perceived as flawed while Obama needs to shrug the mocked stigma of being a flawless messiah. Obama is the insightful, visionary newcomer. Biden is the established attack dog. Obama has compassion; Biden has rabies. McCain has two incredible weaknesses- he's incredibly short-tempered, and he doesn't know what the hell he's talking about. Biden is going to attack both, and he's going to do it in a way the media will love.

I'm not saying he was my first choice. Or my fourth. But the reality is that this was a good fit for a while, and if we're waiting for perfect liberal idealism we just need to remember that the so-called "most progressive" candidate was just caught with his pants down in a hotel room.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:03 AM on August 23, 2008 [135 favorites]


I think Biden's a solid choice. He took Rudy Guiliani's kneecaps out in thirty seconds during the primaries. He's blunt, funny, and smart as a whip--exactly what you want in an attack dog. He also has the potential to be a lot of help in an Obama administration getting legislation moving on Capitol Hill. The media really likes him, which is a non-trivial thing.

I can also quite comfortably see him stepping in if (god forbid) anything should happen to Obama, something you couldn't necessarily say about Kaine or Sebelius.
posted by EarBucket at 4:29 AM on August 23, 2008


Oh dear. This European thinks he gonna lose now.
posted by A189Nut at 4:29 AM on August 23, 2008


Oh, and at the rally in Springfield today, Obama should totally introduce Biden as his "clean and articulate running mate."
posted by EarBucket at 4:32 AM on August 23, 2008 [7 favorites]


I would have gone with Patrick Leahy as my VP. Which is why you should think about writing us in this year, "nola/Leahy: The hell?"
posted by nola at 4:55 AM on August 23, 2008


Obama has compassion; Biden has rabies.

Brilliant!
posted by theCroft at 5:00 AM on August 23, 2008


XQUZYPHYR has it. Biden lets the Obama campaign go negative without tarnishing its messianic status. It was a good choice... I just wish that Sebelius had done a better job after the State of the Union.
posted by anotherpanacea at 5:12 AM on August 23, 2008


By the way, you guys know McKinney chose Rosa Clemente as her running mate, right?
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 5:24 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I thought I was assigned to write the Biden FPP!
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 5:36 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


XQUZYPHRYR. Thanks for that post.
posted by rmmcclay at 5:36 AM on August 23, 2008


XQUZYPHYR has it.

Totally. Plus my dad went to high school with him and I grew up with his kids and neice so that makes me famous.

One interesting thing about Delaware--of the two Dem Senators and the Republican Congressman, it's commonly felt that the Republican, Mike Castle, is the most liberal of the three. Just a barely relevant observation.
posted by Pax at 5:39 AM on August 23, 2008


Niece.
posted by Pax at 5:41 AM on August 23, 2008


Joe Biden (D:MasterCard)

So, now the official position of the campaign will include outright support of the Iraq war? Because that's Biden's stance.
posted by eriko at 5:43 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


While everyone wants to assign the VP pick based on who will help the candidate the most at the job of getting elected, Obama chose the guy that will help him most at the job of leading the country.

He chose the person best suited to help him lead, the most capable to step in should Obama become incapacitated, the most experienced in the areas he has weakness.

He based his decision on what was best for the country instead of solely based on what would improve his teams chance of winning.

The decision was Presidential, it signals a change, and it fills me with hope.
posted by Mick at 5:44 AM on August 23, 2008 [8 favorites]


I'm surprised he took another Senator, but he could've done worse.
Mostly, I'm glad people will shut up about THEIR guess who it'd be.

This isn't promising for the squeezed middle class, though.
The credit cards are smiling wide.

Having a VP in your pocket: priceless.
posted by Busithoth at 5:47 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


"How do you pronounce Biden?"

Well, the GOP jokesters would probably pronounce it:

bee-day-en

And then proclaim that he's a French surrender-monkey.
posted by camworld at 5:48 AM on August 23, 2008


Eh. Biden represents Delaware in the Senate, of course he's voted favorably for the credit card companies, just as Obama's voted for ethanol and coal because he represents Illinois. That doesn't really mean much for what his priorities will be in an executive position.
posted by EarBucket at 5:50 AM on August 23, 2008


I'd moan, babe.
posted by googly at 5:50 AM on August 23, 2008


So...Obama/Biden '08, Obama/Sebelius '12, Sebelius/Cantwell '16?

*closes eyes, clicks heels together...*
posted by aihal at 6:02 AM on August 23, 2008


Wow, it's like when Gore picked Lieberman. Anyone else feel like Biden's trying to sell them a used car ALL. THE. TIME? This selection shows that Obama's reeeeally worried about his perceived lack of foreign policy experience. Because that's the only reason I can see for this choice.

But would you want Bidet answering the phone at 3AM? "C'mon, you and I have been at this a long time. We both know how this game goes. Sometimes, you have to bend a few rules, sometimes you have to break a few eggs." *fake smile, then cut back to serious uncle mode* But what's important here is the American People. And the American People want you to walk out of here with the keys to this car. What do you say?"
posted by Eideteker at 6:06 AM on August 23, 2008


Obama just lost my (puny) vote. Which brings me no joy....

Right. Because Joe Biden makes the Obama ticket just about the same as McCain/Whoever.

You were never really planning to vote Obama if this VP pick is enough to drive you away.

Who woulda thunk -- concern trolling on Metafilter!

Me, I think it's exactly the right pick. I am not a big Biden fan because of his IWR vote (though he redeemed himself by opposing the war pretty early on after the debacle began) and because he's been known in my circles as "the senator from MBNA." But he's everything Obama needed in a VP, a very smart guy, and basically quite a decent guy who cares about working people and rational foreign policy.

And he will tear McCain a new one every single day on the trail, which is what we really need from a VP.
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:06 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


Bad choice.
posted by mediareport at 6:08 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


But good post.
posted by mediareport at 6:08 AM on August 23, 2008


Nerdy/Wordy 2008!
posted by ColdChef at 6:22 AM on August 23, 2008 [21 favorites]


At least Biden voted correctly (NAY) on HR 6304 (retroactive immunity for the telecoms).
posted by kid ichorous at 6:24 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


he's the only one who, when faced with attacks like "in 1995 you said you'd be thrilled to run with John McCain", he might actually respond with the equivalent of "well, yeah, that was before I found out John McCain was a fucktard."

A variation on that argument works well for why Biden is running with Obama after saying he was inexperienced "Yeah, I said he was inexperienced, back before he beat all the experienced candidates. Sure, he might not have much foreign policy experience, but that's why he hired me, hello? Smart guy there."
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:24 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


So, now the official position of the campaign will include outright support of the Iraq war? Because that's Biden's stance.

No it's not.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:28 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


We're in...Delaware.
posted by Sys Rq at 6:31 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


The Biden video being passed around by the McCain camp is a bit misleading, in that it’s taken out of context, and is cut off. It also opens a whole ugly kettle of worms for John McCain.

The full quote is from The Daily Show, August 2, 2005:

-------------------------------

John Stewart: “You may end up going against a Senate
collegue, Perhaps McCain, perhaps Frist…”

Joe Biden: “Well, John McCain is a personal friend, a
great friend, and I would be honored to run with or
against John McCain, because I think the country would
be better off, it would be well off no matter who.”

John Stewart: “Did I hear you say ‘with’?”

Joe Biden: “You know, um, John McCain and I think
that…”

John Stewart: “Don’t become cottage cheese my friend,
say it!”

Joe Biden: “Yes, I hope John… I wanted John to run
with John Kerry"


--------------------------

So, basically… Joe Biden was endorsing John McCain as John Kerry’s V.P. -- or possibly his own -- with John McCain switching party affiliations to run!

To make matters worse, John McCain lied to the press, telling them that he was never offered the position as Kerry's running mate, only to later admit that he was offered the position... and the video for this is hillarious as hell!

(Why so tense, John?!)

Tres embarrassing... to McCain! This is just the kind of reminder they need that John McCain has the tendency to be angry, disloyal, and dishonest, with a poor memory! You'd think this would scare the bejeezus out of most Republicans, who now have to wonder just how seriously John McCain considered the idea.

Someone in the press should ask John McCain about this conversation. Certainly, his campaign has opened that avenue for questions on it again.... and maybe they should ask Biden whether John McCain *REALLY* said "categorically no" to the idea of running as a Democrat.
posted by markkraft at 6:35 AM on August 23, 2008 [6 favorites]


HA HA, OH WOW
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 6:35 AM on August 23, 2008


Oops... forgot the link to the Daily Show interview with Joe Biden.
posted by markkraft at 6:36 AM on August 23, 2008


Thanks, ClaudiaCenter, for those links about Biden's horrid role in the Anita Hill/Clarence Thomas hearings. Not gonna do a lot to shore up Obama's support among older women, that's for sure.

Ugh. Biden's a loose-cannon egotist known for stultifyingly dull and excessively long speeches. This feels like a really, really bad choice.

Oh, and whoever said upthread they liked that David Brooks piece, you should probably be aware that Brooks is a classic conservative shill. If he was pushing for Biden, it's a good bet it's because he sees Biden as weak.
posted by mediareport at 6:41 AM on August 23, 2008


OK, enough with the initial reaction...now let's get to the real stuff...what's Biden's complete sexual history?
posted by troybob at 6:44 AM on August 23, 2008


It will be of national importance to know how many houses he owns. They need to schedule an immediate press conference to address this looming and vital question. I am surprised that they have not already mentioned it. We want to know. Vladimir Putin wants to know. The people of Darfur have a right to know these things. Actually, I am shocked. Shocked and dismayed. I had such hope. But now the house question has gone unanswered for hours--nearly a day perhaps. The campaign cannot succeed given these oversights and gaffs. And are they clean houses?
posted by wallstreet1929 at 6:45 AM on August 23, 2008


Unless Obama takes on Camille Paglia as Secretary of State, I don't think he needs to worry so much about losing the Anita Hill crowd.

Though it will be interesting, given that the Hill/Thomas hearings were probably Biden's most-viewed public forum, if this will inspire a press revisit of that event.
posted by troybob at 6:52 AM on August 23, 2008


I'm a Delawarean and I can say that the small first state blogosphere has been all a-twitter all week about this. There have been numerous posts on both the left and right sides of the text editor. Delaware's Blog-corps were among those gathered last night at Wilmington's Dead Presidents bar (really, that's the name) to celebrate. There's even a sour-tasting post by the local Liberal blog-collective's resident pissed off Hillary fan.
posted by mmahaffie at 6:59 AM on August 23, 2008


Looks like I called it yesterday.

Sincerely,

Joe Biden
posted by dobbs at 7:01 AM on August 23, 2008


The McCain camp can run whole ads against Obama made solely out of old Biden clips.

There's the one from earlier this election cycle. And then there's this from 1988.
posted by codswallop at 7:02 AM on August 23, 2008


Did Clinton's supporters really think Hillary was going to be the VP choice? Has she ever said that she wanted the job? Vice president isn't second place. Hasn't been for a long, long time.
posted by ColdChef at 7:03 AM on August 23, 2008


I WAS SUPPOSED TO GET A TEXT MESSAGE.

Just goes to show, you shouldn't get your hopes up when some hot guy says he's going to call; he'll always let you down :-(
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:12 AM on August 23, 2008 [13 favorites]


In other words: One of Barack Obama's harshest critics has just been welcomed as political partner and public advocate.

Because Biden was right.


Is there a point there, or are you just trolling?
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:12 AM on August 23, 2008


It will be of national importance to know how many houses he owns. They need to schedule an immediate press conference to address this looming and vital question.

I know this is sarcastic, but it's actually a pretty good bit of messaging. Biden owns one house, in Delaware. He rides the train in from home to Washington every morning, and rides it back in the evening. He's 99 out of a 100 in total net worth in the Senate. He's well-off, but he hasn't taken advantage of his thirty years in the Senate to enrich himself. The timing with regard to McCain's houses gaffe is fortuitous.
posted by EarBucket at 7:12 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Okay.... watched the purported 30-second takedown... I'm confused. At the time, North Korea was attempting to test weapons, and having them not work out so well. Iran hasn't tested, but has much of the same equipment for making material...

Is it really clear who was further at the time? Am I more confused than usual?
posted by dwivian at 7:22 AM on August 23, 2008


And then there's this from 1988.

The first few seconds of it, if you ignore the part about the economy, sure.

All the rest of it could word-for-word be a campaign ad (if not a really great one) right this very minute for Obama.
posted by Tomorrowful at 7:23 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


STILL. NO. EMAIL.

Barack Obama: Already Failing to Deliver

VOICEOVER: "I'm John McCain and I approved this message."
posted by quonsar at 7:37 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


"I'm John McCain and I approved this parchment."

FTFY
posted by cashman at 7:45 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


Ugh. Biden's a loose-cannon egotist known for stultifyingly dull and excessively long speeches. This feels like a really, really bad choice.

Dan Quayle and Al Gore both stand as proof that if the presidential candidate is charismatic enough (or if his opponent is un-charismatic enough), the VPs really don't matter. Clinton won in 92 and 96; Kerry lost the 2004 election, not Edwards. Obama will win the 2008 election.
posted by Deathalicious at 7:45 AM on August 23, 2008


Obama has compassion; Biden has rabies.

I hope I can wash the coffee off my couch.
posted by docpops at 7:53 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


electoral-vote.com has some great analysis, as always.

From my own pov, I don't think people care very much about the vp candidate or what his policies are. They care what it says about the presidential candidate, that he picked this person. If Obama had really wanted someone to challenge him and help him govern, he would have picked Hillary. If he just wanted to win, he would have picked Kaine, because if he wins Va. it's almost impossible for him to lose.

The Biden pick just feels like a compromise. The candidate who beat on Hillary for voting for the war picking a senator who voted for the war. The "change" candidate picking a 65 year old Washington insider. It feels weak, and the product of by-committee, "play not to lose" thinking.
posted by drjimmy11 at 7:54 AM on August 23, 2008


on a tangent re: the anti-war thing, what's going to happen with that now? The U.S. has agreed to pull out of Iraq by 2011, and Obama favors pouring more troops into Afghanistan for a purpose he has never, to my knowledge, explained. So as far as I can tell, Obama now has the exact same policies on foreign conflicts as George W. Bush.

For the Left, this election is starting to feel like waking up alone in a sleazy hotel room with that familiar sinking feeling and a note on the nightstand reading, "thanks for the primaries- it was great! don't call. -Barak."

posted by drjimmy11 at 8:01 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


XQUZYPHRYR has a 5-run-lead going into the bottom of the ninth. Can dashiv pull out a miraculous comeback?
posted by lukemeister at 8:06 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Just got my email from Obama. Too little, too late.
posted by ColdChef at 8:22 AM on August 23, 2008


With all the goddamn hand-wringing in this thread and in the media at large, I doubt any choice would have been satisfactory.

Biden is a lunchpail democrat, a serious foreign policy wonk and a catholic, who will not shy from making vicious (and entirely appropriate) attacks on McCain's abysmal character and worse policy stances. Obama has not been able to go on the offensive without inviting charges of betrayal to his "new type of candidate" brand. If McCain had taken a high road campaign, I think Sibellius or Bayh would have been decent choices. But, he didn't. He went stoopid negative. As it is, Obama needs a Cheney. A fearless #2 not afraid to be a lightning rod for being too negative.

Given McCain's tactics thus far, Biden is the best choice he could possibly have made.
posted by psmealey at 8:24 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


Obama favors pouring more troops into Afghanistan for a purpose he has never, to my knowledge, explained

Obama has repeatedly stated he wants to send more troops to Afghanistan to "finish the job against al Qaeda in Afghanistan" and possibly get Osama bin Laden. "The War We Need to Win" is an entire speech on the subject.

So as far as I can tell, Obama now has the exact same policies on foreign conflicts as George W. Bush.

The point is that the opposite is true: George W. Bush now has adopted Obama's exact policies. Obama's been saying for months that we need to send more troops to Afghanistan, now we're sending troops to Afghanistan. Obama's been saying for months that we need to set a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq, now we're setting a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq. Ready to lead? He's already leading.
posted by kirkaracha at 8:24 AM on August 23, 2008 [18 favorites]


XQUZYPHYR: "In simplest terms, Joe Biden is an enormous asshole. And frankly, I love him for it. He's the type of asshole who's an asshole because he knows, right out of the gate, that he's smarter than you, that he knows more about a subject, and that he actually has the right idea about something. And damn it people it's time to finally try having someone who's not ashamed of that instead of pretending to be an idiot just to pander."

I don't know... I'm not an American, so I'm not as in the loop on his stance or current issues as I might like to be, but I remembered the name from several articles on Slashdot. There Biden was portrayed as an outspoken supporter of monitoring all internet traffic and of going after users for sharing files with incriminating-sounding names.

I like politicians who are sure of themselves but that should be based on actual knowledge; people who are impressionable tend to take information presented to them ("of course you can tell what is in a file just by looking at its name! and it is extremely easy to monitor net traffic for such names if we only were allowed to do so!") very uncritically and adopt them as their own opinion.
posted by PontifexPrimus at 8:25 AM on August 23, 2008


A collection of Sen. Biden's greatest hits from Oliver Burkeman at the Guardian. His closing observation:

"So how will all this affect the outcome of the election? As a general rule, remember: when a candidate strikes liberal journalists and commie Europeans as witty, sardonic, clever and engaging, that's always a really, really good sign of his electability in mainstream America."

...needs moar [NOT MIDDLE-AMERICA-IST].
posted by aihal at 8:54 AM on August 23, 2008


I don't think Biden would've agreed to be the VP nominee if he didn't think Obama was going to win. One of the lesser-known people mentioned might've signed on to a campaign even if they thought they'd lose so they could establish name recognition (John Edwards 2004?). I don't see this as one last desperate grasp for power, like McCain's candidacy.

Also, I think I'll watch the VP debate now.
posted by kirkaracha at 8:56 AM on August 23, 2008


I got the email and the text around 5AM. Check your spam folder.

Every VP nominee who ever tried for the presidential nomination has spoken ill during the primaries of the man he ends up running with. There is nothing to see in Biden's earlier comments. Americans aren't that dumb -- ooh, look, he changed his mind!

Hey whiners and McCain trolls -- get used to it. You have no idea what you're up against this time. Cool, calm, collected, disciplined Obama . . . no drama, no freaking out. We have this, it's just a matter of keeping your eyes on the prize.
posted by fourcheesemac at 8:56 AM on August 23, 2008


And it is not neck and neck. The media just need you to believe that or they lose money.
posted by fourcheesemac at 8:57 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


"Obama/Biden '08: Two Houses, Two Spouses" [via]
posted by kirkaracha at 8:59 AM on August 23, 2008 [30 favorites]


I think Biden is a fine choice out of the available candidates. There is nothing on his resume that is problematic for your middle-of-the-road average American undecided voter. There is a lot of minutia for junkies to comb through and critique but none of it will matter to the vast majority of independents and moderates. Obama has reliable support on the left, which has softened slightly on the hardliner end because of FISA and offshore drilling but will very likely break back when it comes to the voting booth. Biden will be a great way to get better numbers out of the center and the right.
posted by effwerd at 9:01 AM on August 23, 2008


A nice interview with Biden. Talks about his personal history. Talks openly about being suicidally depressed after losing his wife and child in a car accident.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:07 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Is Biden a member of the Hair Club for Men? It looks unnatural to me.

He seemed to be jockeying for the VP position from Day 1 of his presidential campaign. He didn't do much to differentiate himself from the other Democratic candidates; in fact, he went out of his way to compliment the front runners. His goal seemed to be to rip Republicans multiple new assholes in the debates and point out how much more competent Democrats are than Republicans.
posted by HotPatatta at 9:08 AM on August 23, 2008


Lots of wishful thinking here re: Biden. I've slept on it, and today it seems like an even worse choice than it did last night.

1) He's a Senator
2) He doesn't put a "purple" state into play (like Kaine would have)
3) He's going to get hammered on his past plagiarism
4) Expect non-stop play of clips of him stating Obama isn't ready during the Democratic debates
5) He's a "gaffe machine"
6) I realize this one is subjective, but Biden has the tendency to come across as the most elitist and smarmy of douchebags. Witness his performance during the Alito hearings, where he grand-standed for half an hour by whipping out a Pinceton baseball cap and telling everyone "Hey, I'm a Princeton guy!" (since his son went there). See, he really, really thought he was connecting with the common man there. Thought he was being a mensch, a normal person. If this isn't the best example of Senator-itis I've ever seen, I don't know what is.

If Team Obama wanted "gravitas" or, more to the point, a white dude who might assuage residual racist fears, they should have picked Bayh, who might have helped out it some critical midwest states. And no, I'm not huge fan of Bayh, but in purely cynical terms he'd have been the better "safe" pick.

Bad, bad choice. I'm leaving the country today for a year, so please my fellow Americans, do the right thing come November. The Biden pick makes me less optimistic than ever though.
posted by bardic at 9:11 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


Ooops, forgot to link to his "performance" during the Alito hearings.
posted by bardic at 9:13 AM on August 23, 2008


I wonder how they will deal with the plagiarism/law school thing in the campaign.
posted by oflinkey at 9:13 AM on August 23, 2008


This is a genius move. Biden is the guy McCain pretends to be. People are going to see through McCain's carefully crafted PR character everytime Biden speaks. Whether or not this translates into votes is still the big mystery.
posted by damn dirty ape at 9:20 AM on August 23, 2008


I recall he made it sound like his son was in the line of fire at the time, but I guess not.

Biden's elder son, Beau... is set to be deployed to Iraq in October, 2008.

I don't trust this Biden guy.

The Obama and Biden song
.

I would have preferred ebony and ovary.
posted by nickyskye at 9:22 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


>on Slashdot. There Biden was portrayed as an outspoken supporter of monitoring all internet traffic and of going after users for sharing files with incriminating-sounding names.


Its a two party system. You cant just idealize positions and wish away. With the dems theres a potential debate about limits to civil liberties. WIth McCain and the GOP the debate is whether we should beat you with a baseball bat or just waterboard you for your passwords. Your choice.

Slashdot and mefi represent probably .00000000001 of all voters and probably less of people who actually vote. The idea behind running for office is to win the election. Nothing more.
posted by damn dirty ape at 9:28 AM on August 23, 2008


troybob: OK, enough with the initial reaction...now let's get to the real stuff...what's Biden's complete sexual history?

electoral-vote.com:
Other than plagiarizing one speech, Biden is clean as a hounds' tooth. His first wife was tragically killed, then he remarried. He has never been mentioned in any kind of sex scandal, financial scandal, or anything else. If there had been any dirt on him, it would have come out during his many campaigns.
And:
As mentioned above, he plagiarized part of a speech in 1988. The Republicans will hammer him on for being dishonest. He will apologize and say it was a long time ago. Then the Republicans have a tough decision to make. They can say: "There is no statute of limitations on people who are fundamentally dishonest so we can keep talking about this." But that runs the grave risk of the Democrats saying: "Fair enough. Let's also talk about McCain taking bribes from convicted felon Charles Keating also in the 1980s." Then the Republicans can't dismiss that by saying: "It was long ago." If both transgressions are big news, there is a chance people may see what McCain did as more serious than what Biden did.
posted by russilwvong at 9:32 AM on August 23, 2008 [9 favorites]


America loves good cop-bad cop routines.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:34 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


FFF, thanks for linking to that video. It was very moving. I also liked the way he talked about his dad. That kind of thing goes over with the bitters.
posted by CunningLinguist at 9:40 AM on August 23, 2008


And it is not neck and neck. The media just need you to believe that or they lose money.

How do you figure? The national polling data, and the electoral college roundups on electoral-vote.com, all suggest a close race.
posted by brain_drain at 9:41 AM on August 23, 2008


If he just wanted to win, he would have picked Kaine, because if he wins Va. it's almost impossible for him to lose.

VPs have historically had a hard time delivering their own State whenever those States were in play -- LBJ almost didn't deliver Texas. also, Kaine is really, really green and you don't really want to highlight that. not to mention, in this election both parties, for different reasons, need to consider a tiny bit more seriously than the usual the possibility that the nominee for President might not see the end of his term in 2013 (McCain because of old age; Obama for the reason once so crudely explained by Mrs. Clinton; because face it, how many racist bigoted fucks with guns will go to sleep every night under a President Obama dreaming to become the new James Earl Ray?)


I don't think Biden would've agreed to be the VP nominee if he didn't think Obama was going to win.

what does he have to lose? if they lose, he can go back to a Democratic Senate, to his Foreign Relations job and start busting President McCain's balls, with a vengeance. it's win/win
posted by matteo at 9:44 AM on August 23, 2008


(JFK/LBJ carried Texas with about a 2% margin)
posted by matteo at 9:47 AM on August 23, 2008


I'm not saying he was my first choice. ... [blah blah blah]
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:03 PM



I love how everyone thinks they have it all figured out.

Enjoy the show, everyone...
posted by Zambrano at 9:48 AM on August 23, 2008


Biden sews Pennsylvania up for Obama, and I think he gives the campaign a real shot in the arm in Florida. He's very popular with older white voters down there, the Hillary supporters Obama's had some trouble bringing over. In a lot of ways, Biden brings many of Hillary's positives (name recognition, experience, working class whites, older voters) without many of her negatives.

And he's going to crush whoever McCain picks in the VP debate. I'm really, really hoping we get to watch him take a tire iron to Mitt Romney.
posted by EarBucket at 9:50 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


As mentioned above, he plagiarized part of a speech in 1988. The Republicans will hammer him on for being dishonest. He will apologize and say it was a long time ago. Then the Republicans have a tough decision to make. They can say: "There is no statute of limitations on people who are fundamentally dishonest so we can keep talking about this." But that runs the grave risk of the Democrats saying: "Fair enough. Let's also talk about McCain taking bribes from convicted felon Charles Keating also in the 1980s." Then the Republicans can't dismiss that by saying: "It was long ago."
They wouldn't dismiss it by saying "It was long ago".

They would dismiss it by invoking what they always invoke whenever John McCain is demonstrated to be a poor choice for the Presidency:

"John McCain certainly wasn't getting any bribe offers when he was in a Vietnamese dungeon!"

If the nominee were Giuliani, it would be the same idea, except with a different deus ex machina:

"Rudy Giuliani certainly wasn't getting any bribe offers on 9/11!"
posted by Flunkie at 9:52 AM on August 23, 2008 [7 favorites]


As mentioned above, he plagiarized part of a speech in 1988.

That's utter bullshit. He used the Kinnock quote numerous times in speeches during 88, year giving full attribution time after time. He was pilloried for the one time that he forgot to give attribution, or just spaced it.

It was a total non-event then, and it's even less signficiant today.
posted by psmealey at 10:01 AM on August 23, 2008 [6 favorites]


As mentioned above, he plagiarized part of a speech in 1988.

Oh come on, this isn't true. He quoted or paraphrased part of a speech by a British politician on 12 different occasions. On 11 of those occasions he attributed the paraphrased part to the UK guy. One 1 of the 12 he forgot to do that, or skipped over part of his speech, or whatever. 1 out of 12 times. It just so happened that a younger Maureen Dowd was in the audience on that occasion, unfortunately for Biden.

Calling that "plagiarism" is ridiculous. I'm not worried about this. If McCain wants to scrutinze the 80s, I think Obama and Biden will crucify him with the Keating Five stuff.
posted by Justinian at 10:02 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


2) He doesn't put a "purple" state into play (like Kaine would have)

When was the last time a VP selection demonstrated any ability to sway the vote in any state? 1960?
posted by psmealey at 10:03 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Politician not perfect. News at 11.
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:05 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


"John McCain certainly wasn't getting any bribe offers when he was in a Vietnamese dungeon!"

Perhaps everyone already knows this but me, but it seems like the conventional pundit wisdom — now that people are finally acknowledging that McCain does talk about his POW years for political gain — is that this is a recent development, he's being driven to it, and that historically he's avoided flaunting those years (as he continues to avoid mentioning his son's tour in Iraq).

It may not surprise you to learn that this is nonsense. TNR has McCain's first ever campaign ad from 1982 (scroll down) — two full minutes and change of POW POW POW POW.
posted by enn at 10:09 AM on August 23, 2008


I've been visiting right-wing blogs this morning, and they're all overjoyed with this decision.

Hugh Hewitt:
But put Biden's obvious flaws aside and ask yourself how in the world Obama decided to go with Biden, and you'll quickly realize that the Democratic nominee must have been impressed with Biden on the long campaign trail of 2007 and 2008 --even though voters weren't and even though Biden has no accomplishments of note after 36 years in the Senate. Biden talked a great game and dropped some very interesting place names --and this impressed Obama. Talking the talk has been the key to Obama's success, and in Slow Joe he found an older, far better traveled but equally prolix gas bag. ...

For Obama, it is all about politics and words, elections and poses. Slow Joe is the perfect running mate on a perfect ticket for a party betting on wind to solve the energy crisis.
The Jawa Report:
Praise the Lord and pass the popcorn. This is going to be more fun than Carter/Mondale '80.

And I don't even like McCain that much.
NRO Corner:
I am quite surprised — nearly shocked — at the pick of Biden. I believe Obama has made an error — not just hope so, believe. And he had so many good options for the veep slot (unlike John McCain). He could have gone Kaine, Bayh, Sebelius, Boren, Edwards (Chet) — he had many good options. It was practically impossible to screw up. ...

All politicians have sizable egos, but this may be the most self-loving ticket ever. There’s an old saying, “He’ll die in his own arms” — that can apply to both of them. (I’ve thought of it in connection with McCain, too.) And Obama and Biden are two of the gassiest politicians in all the land — they are rhetorically impossible.
posted by Class Goat at 10:13 AM on August 23, 2008


This is as good a place as any to put in another plug for PoliticalFilter.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:13 AM on August 23, 2008


I suspect Obama could have chosen Jesus Christ Himself and the right-wing blogs would be rhapsodizing about how it would doom him in November.
posted by EarBucket at 10:15 AM on August 23, 2008 [15 favorites]


oflinkey writes "I wonder how they will deal with the plagiarism/law school thing in the campaign."

How'd they deal with it during senate races?
posted by Mitheral at 10:24 AM on August 23, 2008


And he's going to crush whoever McCain picks in the VP debate. I'm really, really hoping we get to watch him take a tire iron to Mitt Romney.

Romney would be his winning pick. Americans don't really hate money, they secretly worship it, (and as long as we need it for health care we will feel vulnerable without it, and vulnerable usually votes in fantasy mode when given the chance). Anyone who buys a stack of lottery tickets to cope with their poverty will probably vote for the rich pair and if that's peeling votes away, then it's well worth it as they see it.
posted by Brian B. at 10:25 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Heh, reflecting on this excellent comment, what XQUZYPHYR seems to be saying is that Biden is the perfect Riker to Obama's Captain Picard.

fucking rad.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 10:28 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


# “I'm surprised he took another Senator, but he could've done worse.”

I thought I remembered someone from Obama’s campaign saying, after the primaries, something like, “The last thing this campaign needs is another Senator.” (re: the possibility of Clinton as a running mate.)

You also have to consider that whomever Obama had chosen would have needed to be replaced in their current position. Biden’s from a safe (D) state. Clinton as well, but could they ensure that other vacancies might not be picked up by the GOP?
posted by ijoshua at 10:28 AM on August 23, 2008




I'm not sure why the Democrats need an excuse to bring up the Keating Five? I mean, why wouldn't they do it, do it first, do it often. In fact, Biden would be good at doing just that.
posted by Rumple at 10:36 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Class Goat: That's what we here on the internet call "concern trolling". As Earbucket says, the Republicans would (publicly) be claiming that any pick Obama made was the worst possible pick.

Privately, according to journalists and their republican sources, the Republicans felt this was probably one of Obama's best possible picks. They didn't think he'd have the guts to actually do it, though, since Biden has so much experience relative to Obama.
posted by Justinian at 10:37 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Brian B: Romney would be his winning pick. Americans don't really hate money, they secretly worship it, (and as long as we need it for health care we will feel vulnerable without it, and vulnerable usually votes in fantasy mode when given the chance).

I'd be much more worried that he'd somehow bring Colin Powell over to his tent. McCain seems fully committed to channeling the militarist ideal, which is by now our born-again public religion. What's worse than running against a war hero? Try two war heroes.
posted by kid ichorous at 10:39 AM on August 23, 2008


I'd be much more worried that he'd somehow bring Colin Powell over to his tent.

You kidding? I put it at better than 50% that Powell endorses Obama before election day. In any case there is no possible way that Powell endorses McCain, much less runs with him.
posted by Justinian at 10:40 AM on August 23, 2008


Analysis: Biden pick shows lack of confidence

That headline was foreordained. At 1:45AM it read:

"Analysis: PN pick shows lack of [confidence]/[judgment]"
posted by felix betachat at 10:45 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


This is as good a place as any to put in another plug for PoliticalFilter.
This site doesn't have a post on it yet (!).
posted by uni verse at 10:47 AM on August 23, 2008


And the MSM has already begun the bullshit 'analysis' presented as truth.

Ron Fournier applied for a job working for McCain last year.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:48 AM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yeah, Fournier is completely in the tank for McCain. He's a BIG right winger.
posted by Justinian at 10:49 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Romney would be his winning pick.

McCain/Romney- a wife in every house.

Thank you, try the veal.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:49 AM on August 23, 2008 [18 favorites]


This site doesn't have a post on it yet (!).

This is a good thing.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:52 AM on August 23, 2008


I think this might help win an election, but in the long run I don't like it much. Bill Richardson would have made a better VP pick - I lived in New Mexico for seven years, so I know that Bill Richardson is uniquely qualified to sit around and do absolutely nothing effectual beyond speak at big events in an attempt to bolster his resume.

Joe Biden, on the other hand, is a qualified, thoughtful politician with a history of careful and deliberate action. He's an awful pick for a job like Vice President, which is a relatively unimportant and uninfluential position unless somebody happens to go and get shot. People seem to forget that before Dick Cheney became a weird kind of proxy ruler, the Vice President didn't do much of anything at all. Hell, doesn't anybody remember the '90s? Sure, Gore's pushing himself now, but back then the first lady was more influential on national politics than the Vice President!

It's a waste, I think, for Joe Biden to be Vice President. The guy should be Secretary of State. We haven't had a remarkable cabinet in well-nigh forty years. Maybe this is why.

Of course, given the way the last eight years have gone, I guess it's possible that Obama and Biden could take up that legacy and mold the Vice President's office into a kind of cabinet position. I can't think of a reason why that would be too terrible in and of itself.
posted by koeselitz at 10:53 AM on August 23, 2008


4 hours of comment reading later ....

I think I have it straight - the crux of the election is no longer who is better fit to recieve a 3am phone call, but who is best at sending 3am texts?

Got it!
posted by mannequito at 10:55 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I put it at better than 50% that Powell endorses Obama before election day

because, clearly, when your campaign has essentially one silver bullet -- that McCain will serve Bush's 3rd term, plain and simple, maverick my ass -- what you really want is the endorsement of the Bush flunky who sold the war to the UN, nicely packaged in those bootleg aluminum tubes.

I mean, really, regardless of skin color, any Bush cabinet member who endorses Obama should be welcomed by the Democrats as much as Satan's endorsement would be.
posted by matteo at 11:01 AM on August 23, 2008


or, you know, Lynndie England's.
posted by matteo at 11:02 AM on August 23, 2008


Biden is a good choice, but the perfect ticket would be OBAMA/YO MAMA.
posted by Daddy-O at 11:02 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I mean, really, regardless of skin color, any Bush cabinet member who endorses Obama should be welcomed by the Democrats as much as Satan's endorsement would be.

The people who know that Powell is a fucker are already voting for Obama. The people Obama needs to appeal to are the low information voters, and they still respect Powell immensely. If you don't think the Obama campaign would spooge in their shorts at the first hint that Powell is ready to endorse then you probably need to take a step back and look at the big picture.

It's about winning, not about maintaining ideological purity.
posted by Justinian at 11:12 AM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


It's a waste, I think, for Joe Biden to be Vice President. The guy should be Secretary of State. We haven't had a remarkable cabinet in well-nigh forty years. Maybe this is why.

I originally wanted to see Biden in State as well, but as Cheney proved there's nothing that specifically forbids the Vice President from having authority within the administration. If Biden's going to be a VP the way Cheney was VP and Obama's Secretary of State is going to be as "effective" as Condoleeza Rice, then Biden will probably be doing most of the talking.

As far as a remarkable cabinet, I think politics has sort of dismissed that notion- in large parts the cabinet is just as political as the rest of the campaign, with opposition getting token positions and moves being made to strengthen or weaken a party. With Biden on the ticket now, I'm sure State is pretty much guaranteed to Bill Richardson, but I would also not be surprised to see Dick Durbin get a cabinet appointment, clearing the way to make Hillary Clinton Minority Whip, thus making her the lock for Majority Leader whenever Reid retires.

More importantly, it would be interesting to see how much actual animosity develops between McCain and Obama during the campaign, seeing as how if Obama wins, offering McCain a cabinet position creates an open seat to be filled with a Democratic appointment. If the Democrats can get up to 57-58 seats in the Senate it would actually be quite easy for Obama to manipulate that to 60.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 11:17 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I think the best thing that has resulted from this so far is CNN's "zomg I broke the story" John King getting knocked down to mere mortal when his little zoom map board broke on him just now.

He was pounding on it with his index finger and it would respond like 10 seconds later. Then he tried to do that little dual-finger expand-o-region thing, and nothing happened. He was like a superhero who had lost his powers. Of course CNN went to commercial pretty quickly, so as not to show him crumpling in a heap and crying.
posted by cashman at 11:21 AM on August 23, 2008 [5 favorites]


New typeface? Maybe I haven’t been paying attention, but I haven’t seen that serif type used in Obama’s campaign material before.
posted by ijoshua at 11:23 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I've been visiting right-wing blogs this morning, and they're all overjoyed with this decision.

Oh hell, that's how they'd spin any VP decision. You really think the likes of Lt. Col. Hewitt of the 101st Fighting Keyboards will ever do something so unmanly as emote anything other than self-satisfied macho disdain over any choice some damn librul makes? Obama could have picked Jesus Christ as his running mate, and Hewitt would be smirking all the same.
But put Jesus' obvious flaws aside (consorting with whores, making excuses for the poor, etc.) and ask yourself how in the world Obama decided to go with Jesus, and you'll quickly realize that the Democratic nominee must have been impressed with Jesus on the long campaign trail of 2007 and 2008 -- even though voters weren't and even though Jesus has no accomplishments of note, other than the water and wine thing.
posted by scody at 11:24 AM on August 23, 2008 [14 favorites]


Romney would be his winning pick.

Oooh, I hope so. I have to think there's some nontrivial number of Southern fundies who would find it even harder to vote for older-than-dirt McCain if his replacement were Mormon, which is to say OMG PAGAN AND CONTROLLED BY SLC!!!.

Not they'd switch to Obama, but just be more likely to stay home.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:29 AM on August 23, 2008


Class Goat's whirlwind tour of the conservative blogosphere was interesting.

These conservative elitists (like the ivy gang at NRO) are sure fascinated by Obama's and Biden's "elitism."
posted by lodurr at 11:31 AM on August 23, 2008


XQUZYPHYR: More importantly, it would be interesting to see how much actual animosity develops between McCain and Obama during the campaign, seeing as how if Obama wins, offering McCain a cabinet position creates an open seat to be filled with a Democratic appointment.

Yes. I also think that Biden's a good political match for McCain; McCain's a decent guy, and the 'straight talk' thing seems to be a good gimmick for him, but in general, he's more the type to get pissed off and indignant. Biden isn't. It's pretty clear to me that Biden could out-straight-talk McCain any day, although I'm sure a VP running-mate can't do that too directly without undermining the candidate himself.
posted by koeselitz at 11:31 AM on August 23, 2008


I know you kid, but 10¢?! AT&T charges 20¢/message now.

Which is fascinating, given that the actual cost to them is a fraction of a cent.


The extra 19 cents helps pay for the massive amount of wiretapping equipment they have to maintain. Spying on everyone in the US is no small task.
posted by Mr_Zero at 11:31 AM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


And it is not neck and neck. The media just need you to believe that or they lose money.

Exactly. It was the same with Obama/Clinton. It became virtually impossible for her to win quite some time before she withdrew. But the media kept playing it, like it was a close contest.
posted by Mr_Zero at 11:36 AM on August 23, 2008


Uh, guys? It is neck and neck. I'm getting a pretty amazing sense of overconfidence here.

Obama needs to win Florida or Ohio. He's behind by a modest amount in Florida and a little bit in Ohio. Failing that he needs Virginia or Colorado. He's behind by a teeny weeny amount in both.

6 weeks ago maybe the "it's not as close as they're saying!" made sense. But the pathetic McCain attacks over the last 6 weeks pathetically worked. Obama lost 3-4 points in a lot of battleground states.

It really is a dead heat right now. In fact, I think if the election had been held 4 days ago Obama would have lost.
posted by Justinian at 11:43 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I have to think there's some nontrivial number of Southern fundies who would find it even harder to vote for older-than-dirt McCain if his replacement were Mormon, which is to say OMG PAGAN AND CONTROLLED BY SLC!!!.

He would lose Southern votes, but it's a safe gamble to lose some safe state voters by gaining others in must-have Michigan, a Romney homestead.
posted by Brian B. at 11:44 AM on August 23, 2008


brain-drain, electoral-vote.com is not the best site for tracking the state-by-state polls. Pollster.com is. They have a much more sophisticated model.

National polls mean -- everyone pay attention -- *nothing* except for the media's desperate ploy for a "horse race" so they can keep eyeballs and sell ads.

I'm confident. I'll gloat the day after the election. The fundamentals of this election already predict Obama winning handily. That's *without* Obama's massive -- and massively underreported and under-polled -- GOTV effort. He said all along he would win by out-*organizing* the republicans. I see every single sign pointing to just that.
posted by fourcheesemac at 11:47 AM on August 23, 2008


Yes. I also think that Biden's a good political match for McCain

Surprisingly, this race has become all about McCain. Is he the maverick military hero or is he the doddering old man who will say anything, compromise any ideal, in the attempt to get more of that sweet sweet taste of power? Obama can't (or won't) race McCain to the bottom. I think they chose Biden, in part, because he's ready and able to call bullshit on McCain.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:48 AM on August 23, 2008


Y'all, it's not "gaff," it's "gaffe."

And compared to McCain, Biden is quite careful with his mouth. McCain will sink himself, repeatedly, in the debates. All Obama needs to do is get him angry and flustered and he will spew nonsense like "I don't remember how many houses I have."
posted by fourcheesemac at 11:49 AM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I know you kid, but 10¢?! AT&T charges 20¢/message now.

T-Mobile prepaid only charges 10¢ to send, 5¢ to receive.

Of course, it's criminal that you have to pay to receive anything on a cell phone. In civilized countries, it's the caller/sender who pays, not the receiver, just like on landlines.

----------
New typeface? Maybe I haven’t been paying attention, but I haven’t seen that serif type used in Obama’s campaign material before.
posted by ijoshua at 2:23 PM on August 23 [+] [!]


I'm not one to look closely at typefaces much, but I'm not liking it. They should have stuck with the sans serif font. The two together is jarring.
posted by jb at 11:49 AM on August 23, 2008


He said all along he would win by out-*organizing* the republicans. I see every single sign pointing to just that.

There is a technical political term for every candidate that has ever depended on the youth vote or other historically low-turnout group turning out in higher numbers to put him over the top. That technical political term is "LOSER".

I hope Obama wins. I think he has a decent shot. We'll know more after the first debate when a lot of people are exposed to him for the first time in a non-foxnews kind of way. But your overconfidence borders on hubris.
posted by Justinian at 12:02 PM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


For all those who think Biden has flaws, have you stopped to consider the alternatives? If someone can find the messianic VP that Obama ought to have chosen, and present an honest, flaw-free, opposition-research-untouchable case for them, I'd like to hear it. The alternatives are also human, they also have flaws: groups they'd alienate; positions that put them at odds with Obama; flubs, gaffes, and skeletons in the closet; or they were unavailable.

Consider that last one: availability. Everyone claims they'd accept the VP nomination as a duty, if asked. However, Evan Bayh, who was perhaps the best candidate, has a considerably better gig being master of the Senate than he'd have as a lowly VP. He's publicly stated he'd accept the VP slot, but it's quite likely he politely retracted that in private. What could possibly motivate him to take second chair in the executive branch? Perhaps worse, he was a major supporter of the war in Iraq, and has supported the Bush administration's antagonistic rhetoric with Iran. But many who decry those features in McCain would still have preferred to see Bayh nominated as Vice-President. That's the kind of thoughtlessness that loses elections.

I know plenty of Republicans that respect Biden a great deal on foreign policy. His friendship with McCain has contributed to the "maverick" label each enjoys. He opens up a whole new brand of negative 'deliberate gaffe' campaigning, while simultaneously offering the possibility of a kind of intimate critique, "The McCain I know wouldn't say such obviously untrue things about a fellow member of the Senate... what's happened to your principles, old friend?"
posted by anotherpanacea at 12:08 PM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


Can I vote for Michelle Obama and Jill Biden? Rowr.
posted by spiderwire at 12:18 PM on August 23, 2008


oflinkey: I wonder how they will deal with the plagiarism/law school thing in the campaign.

Same way they dealt with it twenty years ago: the dean of the college says it wasn't a large issue, he just didn't appear to understand the basics of citation. He got an 'f' in the class and had to retake it. His teacher from the time says he was a great student, and that this was mostly just an issue of principle; that's why he was allowed to retake the class.
posted by koeselitz at 12:20 PM on August 23, 2008


New typeface? Maybe I haven’t been paying attention, but I haven’t seen that serif type used in Obama’s campaign material before.

That's a very nice catch. The serifs highlight the conjunction between the B and the M/N, tying both men's names together and giving a sense of solidity. It also subtly suggests evolution and growth, great things to be emphasizing when you add experience to your ticket.

It'll be interesting to see if they go with the serif face only on "Obama/Biden" or if it extends throughout their website and literature.
posted by felix betachat at 12:20 PM on August 23, 2008


Oh man. Biden's speech is all economic red meat. This is great stuff.
posted by felix betachat at 12:26 PM on August 23, 2008


Literally!
posted by empath at 12:28 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


That's a very nice catch. The serifs highlight the conjunction between the B and the M/N, tying both men's names together and giving a sense of solidity. It also subtly suggests evolution and growth, great things to be emphasizing when you add experience to your ticket.

"Obama" has been in serif all along (usually) — certainly before the changeover of the branding on the website last night. It's been everything else ("Change," "Hope," etc.) that's been in sans. (See this from January — a minority of the "Group X for Obama" logos use sans for his name, but everything else is serif.)
posted by enn at 12:28 PM on August 23, 2008


“He’ll have to figure out which of the seven kitchen tables to sit at.”

This is why I like Biden. Full of lulz.
posted by ryoshu at 12:28 PM on August 23, 2008


other than the water and wine thing

because he was a drunk. Larry McCarthy can cook up an attack ad against Jesus in an afternoon, if Jesus chooses to endorse the Democrats (also, besides the consorting with whores and partying with bootleg wine, he was a Jew, and not really American either. seriously, the ad copy just writes itself -- they can Swiftboat him into the Kingdom Of Hell faster than you can say "country first").
posted by matteo at 12:30 PM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


There is a technical political term for every candidate that has ever depended on the youth vote or other historically low-turnout group turning out in higher numbers to put him over the top. That technical political term is "LOSER".

None of them had anything like the organizing machine Obama has. And none of them had the level of identification with those "low turnout" groups -- who don't turn out because the candidates have had nothing to offer them on any level. Just watch. Obama is rewriting the rules in many ways, but this is the biggest shift.

And he ain't lost anything yet.

You can't win without fighting. And you can't fight if you're scared of the enemy.
posted by fourcheesemac at 12:31 PM on August 23, 2008


Biden needs more practice saying his name :) Barack America!
posted by empath at 12:32 PM on August 23, 2008


Biden needs more practice saying his name :) Barack America!

Cut the guy some slack. He's shit scared of saying Osama at that podium. It's overcompensation, plain and simple.
posted by felix betachat at 12:34 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


That's an awesome gaffe though empath. Barack America!
posted by cashman at 12:34 PM on August 23, 2008


He did a good job.
posted by empath at 12:38 PM on August 23, 2008


It was great. He comes off as raw, plainspoken and full of heart. It's a perfect compliment to all of Obama's established characteristics. Obama is going to be the heart and brain of the campaign and Biden is going to be the teeth.
posted by felix betachat at 12:41 PM on August 23, 2008


I think Biden can be clever and charming, and can probably finish off most guys (or gals) in a debate before they even know they've been hit, but I can't help feeling disappointed. Still, the VP is not really a make-or-break thing, as stated repeatedly upthread. If McCain wins, it will be another great victory for racism.
posted by Mister_A at 12:43 PM on August 23, 2008


He was always entertaining on Meet the Press, I'll give him that.
posted by Mister_A at 12:45 PM on August 23, 2008


That's an awesome gaffe though empath. Barack America!

Maybe he's channeling Tim Kreiger.

Did I hear Obama introduce him as "the next president — the next vice president?"
posted by enn at 12:47 PM on August 23, 2008


yes.
posted by empath at 12:48 PM on August 23, 2008


If McCain wins, it will be another great victory for racism.

Because, after all, it simply isn't possible for someone to decide they disagree with Obama on the issues, or to think that Obama doesn't have the experience yet to take on this job.
posted by Class Goat at 12:50 PM on August 23, 2008


Speaking purely politically, I don't think Obama had any choice but to pick an insider with established credentials for the VP slot, and Biden fits the bill. If it's hard for Obama supporters like myself to get excited about Biden, in some respects that may be a good thing: a VP is meant to compliment and not overshadow the main candidate, and Biden is a solid, safe bet. The worst people seem to be able to say about him is that he tends to talk too long and is prone to gaffes. But a lot of successful politicians are prone to gaffes and like the sound of their own voice. The main selling points with Biden are his political experience, his intimate knowledge of foreign affairs, his working-class, Catholic upbringing, and his passion for debate. He is a little too centrist for my own taste, but then again mainstream American politics in general is way too right-of-center for my own tastes. But the main thing from now until November is that McCain MUST be defeated. A McCain win would be an absolute total unmitigated disaster for the country and for the world. So if Biden helps solidify an Obama victory, then by all means let's welcome the man on board.
posted by ornate insect at 12:56 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Because, after all, it simply isn't possible for someone to decide they disagree with Obama on the issues, or to think that Obama doesn't have the experience yet to take on this job.

After McCain's attempt to execute HIS OWN foreign policy with respect to Georgia and Russia when he's no more empowered to do so than I am, there are people out there that still think that McCain has more or better experience to take on this job?
posted by psmealey at 12:57 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Newsweek: He is the 'anti-Dick Cheney'.
posted by ericb at 1:02 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]




I suspect Obama could have chosen Jesus Christ Himself and the right-wing blogs would be rhapsodizing about how it would doom him in November.

Fuck yeah!. Jesus claimed to have driven demons out into pigs and sent them over steep land into the sea. No steep land in the area - JESUS CAUGHT OUT IN LIE.

Jesus was unavailable for comment, apparently resting in house that is not publically acknowledged as BELONGING TO JOHN McCAIN

Senator Joe Biden says "About that. While the prevarication of John McCain is without doubt, indubitable, well, LET ME BE BRIEF, we have an inestimable correlation between the inexorable and the condescending. Far be it from me to in any way criticize the superfluous indignation of the Republican's incorrigible attack flank, but suffice to say, their rampant ineptness correlates well with the level of verifiable information handed over by the typical resident of the Hotel Hilton - which is to say, Senator McCain learned well the art of dissembling in the service of America, at the unfortunate cost of being unable to unravel the truth in the service of America post release, post reality, post partisan which we so dearly need. We salute his efforts but, in order to salute his results, we must recall the deficit, the demoralization and the despair that his way of thinking has put us well within the way of. We salute him, at half mast, around the neck.
posted by Sparx at 1:14 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


verycashman: "I think the best thing that has resulted from this so far is CNN's "zomg I broke the story" John King getting knocked down to mere mortal when his little zoom map board broke on him just now.

He was pounding on it with his index finger and it would respond like 10 seconds later. Then he tried to do that little dual-finger expand-o-region thing, and nothing happened. He was like a superhero who had lost his powers. Of course CNN went to commercial pretty quickly, so as not to show him crumpling in a heap and crying.
"

Jon Stewart Pinpoints the Exact Moment CNN Touch Screen Ate John King's Soul
posted by Rhaomi at 1:28 PM on August 23, 2008




yes, yes, Biden blah blah blah. WHERE CAN I BUY MICHELE OBAMA'S DRESS?
posted by scody at 1:39 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Sparx, was that supposed to be an imitation of Biden's speaking style? Because if so I didn't recognize it. He can go on and on, but he doesn't sound pedantic like that, or use ten dollar words like that.
posted by fourcheesemac at 2:01 PM on August 23, 2008


If McCain wins, it will be another great victory for racism.

You're absolutely right. Anybody who doesn't vote for Obama must be racist.
posted by gyc at 2:04 PM on August 23, 2008


Non-Sequitor
First off, just got back from camp Obama in nyc. Anyone worried about Obama's GOTV efforts: they had 200 people on a beautiful saturday in august being trained to be dispatched across the country. Third presidential campaign I've been involved in, first time I've seen that.

Second, what XQUZYPHYR said: Obama/Asshole 2008

as an asshole I'm loving getting some representation
posted by slapshot57 at 2:07 PM on August 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


If McCain wins, it will be another great victory for racism.

You're absolutely right. Anybody who doesn't vote for Obama must be racist.


Here's an instructional video so we don't have to go down this road.

Because it's certainly not as simple as that, but indeed there are a lot of people who call themselves democrats and progressives who doth protest a bit much about voting for the democratic candidate. Pro-choice women talking about voting for a guy who will overturn roe v wade. When you see that, I think it does warrant a closer look and indeed an inquiry into racist behaviors.
posted by cashman at 2:16 PM on August 23, 2008 [7 favorites]


also, besides the consorting with whores and partying with bootleg wine, he was a Jew

And he (Jesus) hung out exclusively with twelve single, svelte ("Not that there's anything wrong with that") men, having dinners and drinks together with no women present.
posted by ericb at 2:45 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


If McCain picks Romney, Biden is going to eat his lunch at the debates. Biden may be a lot of things, but he's no phony.
posted by empath at 2:46 PM on August 23, 2008


If cashman has anything he can point to that McCain has said or done anything racist I would like to look at it.
posted by Daddy-O at 2:47 PM on August 23, 2008


Peggy Noonan has a funnier and more accurate take on Biden here.

What if a fella--I'm just hypothesizing here, Judge Alito--what if a fella said, "Well I don't want to hire you because I don't like the kind of eyeglasses you wear," or something like that. Follow my thinking here. Or what if he says "I won't hire you because I don't like it that you wear black silk stockings and a garter belt. And your name is Fred." Strike that--just joking, trying to lighten this thing up, we can all be too serious. Every 10 years when you see me at one of these hearings I am different from every other member of Judiciary in that I have more hair than the last time. You know why? It's all the activity in my brain! It breaks through my skull and nourishes my follicles with exciting nutrients! Try to follow me.
posted by empath at 2:48 PM on August 23, 2008


Bad, bad choice. I'm leaving the country today for a year, so please my fellow Americans, do the right thing come November.

Hey, you do know that nonresident citizens can vote too, right?
posted by kittyprecious at 2:56 PM on August 23, 2008


Sparx, was that supposed to be an imitation of Biden's speaking style? Because if so I didn't recognize it. He can go on and on, but he doesn't sound pedantic like that, or use ten dollar words like that.

I just don't fit in here anymore. Perhaps I never really did
posted by Sparx at 2:57 PM on August 23, 2008


How 'bout this Daddy-O:

"On his campaign bus recently, Sen. John McCain told reporters, "I hated the gooks. I will hate them as long as I live." Although McCain said he was referring only to his prison guards, there are many reasons why his use of the word "gook" is offensive and alarming. "

from

John McCain's racist remark very troubling

Thursday, March 2, 2000

By KATIE HONG
SPECIAL TO THE POST-INTELLIGENCER
posted by Relay at 3:00 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Now I don't hate them any more—not these particular guys. I hate and detest the leaders. Some guards would just come in and do their job. When they were told to beat you they would come in and do it. Some seemed to get a big bang out of it. A lot of them were homosexual, although never toward us. Some, who were pretty damned sadistic, seemed to get a big thrill out of the beatings.

John McCain on his captors in 1973.
posted by empath at 3:06 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


If cashman has anything he can point to that McCain has said or done anything racist I would like to look at it.

Pointy point, Daddy-O, courtesy your fellow mefites. I never knew about McCain using "Gooks" with conviction to describe his captors, during the 2000 campaign until I read it here. Then apologized later, apparently.

But actually, that wasn't even the point of my post. At all.
posted by cashman at 3:08 PM on August 23, 2008


Yeah, that's pretty offensive but he seems to have been talking about individuals who tortured him for years and beat him nearly to death. Got anything else?
posted by Daddy-O at 3:12 PM on August 23, 2008


He doesn't put a "purple" state into play

He's a native son of Pennsylvania, which is one of the three most important states in the electoral college.

Here is an extremely detailed, empirically based argument that the running mate never sways a state (not even LBJ-Texas!).
posted by Jaltcoh at 3:18 PM on August 23, 2008


Did you actually read that comment, Daddy-O? Because you completely missed the point. He wasn't talking about McCain.
posted by puke & cry at 3:19 PM on August 23, 2008


I realize this one is subjective, but Biden has the tendency to come across as the most elitist

He's the least wealthy of all 100 senators, and he commutes to work by train!

As you say, "elitist" is vague and subjective, but hey -- give him some credit. Being a senator who's not a millionaire is pretty uncommon.
posted by Jaltcoh at 3:24 PM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


A lot of them were homosexual, although never toward us. Some, who were pretty damned sadistic, seemed to get a big thrill out of the beatings.

~ John McCain on his captors in 1973.


He just came out of a fucking POW camp, angry, hurt, after 5.5 years of torture. You have got to think of better ammo for his alleged homophobia than that nonsense.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 3:25 PM on August 23, 2008


Yeah, that's pretty offensive but he seems to have been talking about individuals who tortured him for years and beat him nearly to death. Got anything else?

Maybe you should reread my post again and let me know where I said anything about McCain being a racist. You're not quite explaining what you're thinking but my guess is that you think because of the "triumph for racism" thing, that it means that McCain would then have to be a racist. When in reality as I said in my comment, it was a reference to the discussion of people mysteriously and in a demonstrative manner, going completely against the majority of their principles and values in their statements about who they'll vote for. Tim Wise had some commentary on this.
posted by cashman at 3:27 PM on August 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


I totally understood things incorrectly, and I was writing my "Got anything else" comment without refreshing and seeing cashman's comment posted right above mine. My apologies, especially to cashman.
posted by Daddy-O at 3:31 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Politician not perfect. News at 11.

And yet another highly relevant news-at-11 comment.

There certainly were no news at 11 in John McCain's Vietnamese dungeon, you know.
posted by sour cream at 3:37 PM on August 23, 2008


He's the least wealthy of all 100 senators, and he commutes to work by train!

Which means he's insane. He's the corporation's best ally in the Senate, and he's not doing it for money -- he's doing it for "principle."
posted by eriko at 3:39 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


He's the least wealthy of all 100 senators, and he commutes to work by train!
...give him some credit. Being a senator who's not a millionaire is pretty uncommon.


I'm willing to believe he's no millionaire but I don't know how much I can trust a list that says Bill Frist has a net worth of $0.
posted by brain cloud at 3:39 PM on August 23, 2008


Huh, the top 6 wealthiest senators and 8 of the top 10 are Dems.
posted by Rumple at 4:06 PM on August 23, 2008




Yeah, Biden is a drug warrior. That's extremely unfortunate. But I repeat: He won't blow up the fucking world like McCain.
posted by Justinian at 4:17 PM on August 23, 2008


Oh, come on, Tommy Chong was born in Canada. Now if Biden had put a native-born American like Cheech Marin in jail, that would be a whole different kettle of pipes.
posted by lukemeister at 4:26 PM on August 23, 2008


My google-fu fails me miserably; wasn't there a metafilter post about a magazine interviewing possible VP nominees and asking them if they would accept the nomination?

I'm interested in what Biden's response was (if he was one of the interviewees)...
posted by porpoise at 4:58 PM on August 23, 2008


yeah, that was here:
Sen. Joseph Biden (D-Del.)
“I’m happy being called ‘Mr. Chairman.’ ”
posted by Frankieist at 5:13 PM on August 23, 2008


homunculus: Holy damncakes! That piece in the Guardian was written by Fafblog's Medium Lobster!
posted by JHarris at 5:31 PM on August 23, 2008




New typeface? Maybe I haven’t been paying attention, but I haven’t seen that serif type used in Obama’s campaign material before.

Looks really bad to this untrained eye. The kerning on "OB" (and I suppose "EN", the other way) gives it the look of a fan-made fake.
posted by BaxterG4 at 5:48 PM on August 23, 2008


Regarding McCain and racism, may I introduce into the discussion a picture of McCain's adopted daughter? They raised her from when she was a baby.
posted by Class Goat at 6:10 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


My view is that if you spell his name "Barak" (see above) you have no real standing to criticize him.
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:22 PM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


may I introduce into the discussion a picture of McCain's adopted daughter? They raised her from when she was a baby.

Oh yeah! Good ole Bridget McCain. It would be unthinkable if anybody dragged her into their pre-election-day trickery.
posted by brain cloud at 6:34 PM on August 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


My view is that if you spell his name "Barak" (see above) you have no real standing to criticize him.

How about Baraka?
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:41 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Regarding McCain and racism, may I introduce into the discussion a picture of McCain's adopted daughter?

So what? And Dick Cheney's daughter is a lesbian. There is no doubt he loves his daughter. I suspect that neither Bush nor Cheney give a rat's ass if somebody is gay or not. But is there any question, any at all, that their administration is only still in power based on the deliberate cultivation of the anti-gay vote in 2004? No there is not.

Someone may not personally be a racist or a homophobe and yet still make the choice to act in a manner which empowers racism, homophobia, or other bigotry for his or her own personal advancement. In some ways that's worse than unthinking or ignorant bigotry; a person who is prejudiced because of ignorance can be educated. An educated person who chooses to make use of prejudice to advance their own power has deliberately chosen to make the world a worse place.
posted by Justinian at 7:29 PM on August 23, 2008 [13 favorites]


a racist or a homophobe

one cannot choose his race. one can choose his behavior.
posted by quonsar at 8:10 PM on August 23, 2008


one cannot choose his race.

Some can, and it's just as sad as a gay person being in the closet.
posted by Bookhouse at 8:19 PM on August 23, 2008


one cannot choose his race. one can choose his behavior.

Which is why it's perfectly acceptable to hate Catholics or Jews, eh quonsar? One can choose one's religion, after all.
posted by Justinian at 8:39 PM on August 23, 2008


Biden addresses the accusation that Democrats will "appease" the enemy: Bullshit!

I like this guy.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:45 PM on August 23, 2008


one can choose his behavior.

Absolutely right. One can choose not to be a fucking homophobe.
posted by scody at 8:48 PM on August 23, 2008 [19 favorites]


Also, amusing: Joe is Right.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:57 PM on August 23, 2008


a racist or a homophobe

one cannot choose his race. one can choose his behavior.


Huh?
posted by homunculus at 9:18 PM on August 23, 2008


I hate to be that guy, but I pegged Biden as a great running mate (not candidate, but running mate) back during the first Democratic debates. He's smart as hell and has been around Washington forever. He kind of deflates Obama's "change" ideal, but Biden's still a good choice.
posted by zardoz at 9:31 PM on August 23, 2008


Huh?

homunculus, it's the self-serving rhetorical device by which antigay bigots attempt to sidestep the accusation that racism and homophobia are comparable -- i.e., no one can choose their skin color, therefore it's bad to be prejudiced toward people of other races, but everyone can choose their sexual orientation [leaving aside the fact that this is bunk, pure and simple], therefore it's acceptable to be prejudiced toward gays and lesbians.

It's illogical, it has nothing to do with the facts of sexual orientation, and it's disappointing to see someone like quonsar -- who I always thought possessed pretty strong critical thinking skills -- evidently trotting it out. Hope springs eternal that he's being ironic.

posted by scody at 10:05 PM on August 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


So quonsar is saying: one cannot choose one's skin colour (ergo it is wrong to be racist); one can "choose to be gay" (ergo it is okay to be a homophobe). I've noticed quonsar is a hater who inevitably leaves little turds of homophobic filth scattered in any thread that mentions homosexuality in passing. When quonsar does this stuff it makes me wish our community did not have quonsar.

Obama Sued in Philadelphia Federal Court on Grounds he is Constitutionally Ineligible for the Presidency... from what appears to be a tinfoil hat site. I have no idea whether the PDFs are legitimate or whether the author is a complete nutter. I suspect the latter, but even a stopped clock be right twice a day.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:40 PM on August 23, 2008


Hope springs eternal that he's being ironic.

Nope, anti-gay bigot.

(he's also a Creationist)
posted by dirigibleman at 10:57 PM on August 23, 2008


(he's also a Creationist) you've gotta be fucking kidding. no way.

Joe Biden rants. He is pissed about Bush's complete incompetence regarding Iraq. It's a shame he isn't leader of the opposition. Shit might get done.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:03 PM on August 23, 2008


(he's also a Creationist)

Damn, I'd feared as much. When did this happen? Didn't he used to regularly engage both sides of his brain?

posted by scody at 12:02 AM on August 24, 2008


In this day and age, one can also choose not to be a sad, fat, fucker. Just putting that out there.
posted by Jimbob at 4:27 AM on August 24, 2008


Regarding McCain and racism,

Look, John McCain ist not a racist, that's for sure.
He may be a bigot, an adulterer or a racist, but he is definitely not a homosexual.
posted by sour cream at 4:29 AM on August 24, 2008 [4 favorites]


So quonsar is saying: one cannot choose one's skin colour (ergo it is wrong to be racist); one can "choose to be gay" (ergo it is okay to be a homophobe)

typical horseshit from an unthinking tape loop.

quonsar is saying race and homosexual behavior are apples and oranges. quonsar said nothing about hate being ok. you see, i realize this is a difficult concept to grasp for a black and white and damn the shades of gray "thinker", but it is possible to distinguish one thing from another without following the frantic "ergo"'s of another's bulldozing dogmatic faux-logic. i find it endlessly amusing the way in which many self-proclaimed broad-minded liberal proselytizers explode into rigid fist-pounding self-righteousness while accusing who dares challenge one of thier most deeply held assumptions of precisely that. you're a parody of yourself, just like me.
posted by quonsar at 5:20 AM on August 24, 2008


I hate politicians. I will hate them as long as I live.
posted by telstar at 5:45 AM on August 24, 2008


Oh hell, that's how they'd spin any VP decision.


Scody, that's not spin, at least not among the ones I know personally. They're delighted that the clown prince of the Senate is now on the ticket. No other potential pick has produced as much attack-ad fodder - or is expected to produce as much in the future - as Joe Biden. No other emphasizes Obama's weaknesses like Joe Biden. No other neutralizes so many of the GOP's weaknesses like Joe Biden.

I thought Obama would pick Kaine, because I thought he wasn't smart enough to pick Sebelius. I never dreamed that he was truly considering Biden.
posted by mikewas at 7:24 AM on August 24, 2008


quonsar is saying race and homosexual behavior are apples and oranges.

Yes, but WHY is quonsar saying this? What's the expected outcome?
posted by Sys Rq at 7:27 AM on August 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


it is possible to distinguish one thing from another without following the frantic "ergo"'s of another's bulldozing dogmatic faux-logic

Please explain the logic, then, in what you wrote: one cannot choose his race. one can choose his behavior. I do not see any way to interpret it than the way that I offered. Enlighten me.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:19 AM on August 24, 2008


fourcheesemac: That's *without* Obama's massive -- and massively underreported and under-polled -- GOTV effort. He said all along he would win by out-*organizing* the republicans. I see every single sign pointing to just that.

Let's hope his GOTV-texts don't arrive hours after the news has broken polls have closed.
posted by lodev at 8:33 AM on August 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


If Biden is so great, how come he's got so many years in the Senate with so little to show for it?
posted by cell divide at 10:50 AM on August 24, 2008


If Biden is so great, how come he's got so many years in the Senate with so little to show for it?

This puts him above the most productive Republicans, who have spent years in the Senate and done so much.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:58 AM on August 24, 2008


Let's not pander to quonsar's homophobia, please. This thread is too interesting to get derailed by that clown.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:07 AM on August 24, 2008


I'm new to following politics, so I didn't know much about Biden. Watching all the videos of him, he seems like a pretty good guy. He seems sharp as a tack.

What made me decide he was worth respect was in the interview someone posted above, where he discusses the death of his first wife and daughter. It showed footage from right after the incident, as he was sworn in at the hospital, near his sons. He said something (forgive me for forgetting the exact quote) like, "You can always get another senator, but they can't get another father."

He seems like a human being first and a politician second.

and now this thread is in my recent history, woohoo!
posted by Ms. Saint at 11:31 AM on August 24, 2008


Green Ego and Ham
posted by Class Goat at 1:01 PM on August 24, 2008


Enlighten me.

sexual behavior is not a civil rights issue, racism is. not that difficult to discern, i'm saying that in my opinion the continual, unquestioned pairing of racism with an objection to homosexual behavior is "apples and oranges".

here's one for you: accept, approve, encourage, facilitate.

what is the difference? do you acknowledge that there is a difference? is it possible to accept something without approving it? if one accepts something, must one neccessarily encourage it?

now change the words to : reject, disapprove, discourage, repress.
lather, rinse, repeat, and report back. I'd be interested to know the results. because it seems to me that in your worldview, the individual concepts in each group are interchangeable.
posted by quonsar at 1:48 PM on August 24, 2008



sexual behavior is not a civil rights issue, racism is.


Uhhh.. actually it is, given that a lot of sexual behaviour that goes on between consenting adults is still illegal. Moreover, it's how queer people are treated under the law in the USA (unequally) that is the civil rights issue.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 1:55 PM on August 24, 2008


i find it endlessly amusing the way in which many self-proclaimed broad-minded liberal proselytizers explode into rigid fist-pounding self-righteousness while accusing who dares challenge one of thier most deeply held assumptions of precisely that.

Well, speaking for myself, I can say that you've successfully challenged one of my own deeply held assumptions, quonsar. It's not the one you're congratulating yourself for having challenged, however, but I'm confident that won't stop you from being amused all the same. So we both win! You have the satisfaction of laughing at us, and I have the satisfaction of knowing better than to give you the benefit of the doubt any longer.
posted by scody at 3:22 PM on August 24, 2008


sexual behavior is not a civil rights issue, racism is.

FAIL.

Sexual behavior ≠ sexual orientation.

In my opinion (and that of many) race and sexual orientation are not "chosen" traits.
posted by ericb at 3:48 PM on August 24, 2008


I have the satisfaction of knowing better than to give you the benefit of the doubt any longer.

oh. i'm simply crushed and devastated.

Sexual behavior ≠ sexual orientation.

orientation, as in "what you like, what you are attracted to, what your impulses are". regardless of orientation, one can still choose one's behavior. whereas one is asian/black/caucasian etc regardless of any preference, and no action can ever change it. apples and oranges.
posted by quonsar at 3:58 PM on August 24, 2008


Biden apparently isn't wealthy. Especially compared to some of the plutocrats in power.

You're basically asking me to answer a good sixteen questions there, q. I shall answer succinctly:

I don't care if you accept or reject homosexual behaviour, as that's a personal choice of your own. So long as it involves consenting, informed adults, go wild. If you want to accept a cock up your ass, so be it. And if you reject that notion, welcome to the majority club.

I don't even really care if you approve or disapprove of homosexual behaviour: your approval or disapproval isn't going to stop anyone from doing something. I do think it's very tiresome that you drop your little turds of disapproval at every opportunity here on MeFi.

As for encouraging and discouraging others, if it's between you and yours I suppose it's a private affair. I can't imagine many parents encourage gay behaviour. And as for discouraging it, it seems one's free to mentally and emotionally abuse one's children to large extent. Outside the family, it's none of your business how others fuck around, so there's really no call for encouraging or discouraging of any sort.

Finally, there is certainly no need for you to go around facilitating homosexuals or hetereosexuals. Again, this is because it's the sexual relationship between consenting adults is absolutely none of your business.

It is very weird that you are so squicked-out by homosexuals that you feel it necessary to make comment on it so often. Normal people don't do that.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:02 PM on August 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm happy for Biden that he was picked. He could use the pay raise if they win.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 4:10 PM on August 24, 2008


apples and oranges

I get the distinction. I'm more turned off by the fact that people who try so hard to argue that distinction, like those who like to cite statistics on racial differences in intelligence, usually are trying to employ semantics to put an innocuous face on bigotry. It reminds me of how some people in the South hold onto the Confederate flag as an enduring symbol of intimidation and try to argue their position as some kind of appreciation of history and heritage.

The distinction you are trying to make at a certain point becomes less relevant than reason you persist in arguing it, particularly when you add insult to the mix.
posted by troybob at 4:19 PM on August 24, 2008


orientation, as in "what you like, what you are attracted to, what your impulses are". regardless of orientation, one can still choose one's behavior. whereas one is asian/black/caucasian etc regardless of any preference, and no action can ever change it. apples and oranges.

Religious belief is also a choice. Would you say that persecution of people for their religious beliefs isn't a civil rights issue?
posted by me & my monkey at 4:42 PM on August 24, 2008 [4 favorites]


It is an old, tired argument that one does not experience real discrimination if one has the ability to 'pass' as a member of the benefited majority. Everyone has the choice, to some extent, to hide or to lie in order to appear to be someone else, but to support or defend public policy or procedure that relies on that fear or deception is fucked up.
posted by troybob at 5:11 PM on August 24, 2008


Uhhh.. actually it is, given that a lot of sexual behaviour that goes on between consenting adults is still illegal.

Aside from prostitution, what are you really talking about? Remember Lawrence v. Texas.
posted by Jaltcoh at 5:22 PM on August 24, 2008


Seems that quonsar can accept gays so long as they don't have sex. Someone needs a brisk rogering.
posted by Rumple at 5:30 PM on August 24, 2008


Aside from prostitution, what are you really talking about? Remember Lawrence v. Texas.

This may come as somewhat of a shock, but Lawrence is only applicable within the USA.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 5:31 PM on August 24, 2008


It is very weird that you are so squicked-out by homosexuals that you feel it necessary to make comment on it so often.

there you with the "squicked out by homosexuals" crap again. i accept. i disapprove. "ergo" in your worldview, i must hate. what i commented on was the conflation of racism with disapproval of certain sexual behavior. you have blown that up into "homophobia". i say that's a predictable and self-parodying reaction, which i see over and over here.
posted by quonsar at 6:08 PM on August 24, 2008


i disapprove.

Who asked you? Who really cares what you think? Why should behavior of consenting adults which doesn't harm you be a concern to you at all?
posted by krinklyfig at 6:11 PM on August 24, 2008


what i commented on was the conflation of racism with disapproval of certain sexual behavior

Except that in terms of civil rights, we're not talking about that (personal view), but rather the practical results of such racism and disapproval of certain sexual behaviors. What you're trying to sell is basically the answer to the question, 'why is it okay to discriminate against these people, and not against these other people?'. If that's not the case, then maybe you could tell us the point you are trying to make by arguing it. Given that you've gone as far as injecting some muddy criteria having to do with one's ability to hide whatever characteristic arouses discrimination, as if such were consistent with living in a free society, I can't see that your motives are any other than the same old assholery.
posted by troybob at 6:31 PM on August 24, 2008


Who asked you? Who really cares what you think?

Far be it for me to defend quonsar, but I object to your objection of his opinion. This is a democracy, and freedom of expression and being able to lobby Congress for whatever you want is still a right that I hold dear. If I want grass to be no more than 2 inches tall, I have a right to lobby for that. I have a right to lobby against foreign cars, just as I have a right to lobby against the union of two men.

Who asked me? No one. And in this country, there is no policy against the right to hold an opinion, to hold it dear to you, and to lobby for it to be a law. We all have the right to any opinion we want. You want to talk about censorship and depriving people of rights? You represent the fascist state. You represent everything you hate by arguing that his opinion doesn't count, and that it doesn't matter. Being able to get married is a privilege of state recognition (and all the benefits conferred to it). And just as you have a right to lobby for it, I have a right to lobby against it.

Doesn't mean I'm correct in my opinion. But being correct isn't the point.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 6:33 PM on August 24, 2008


i accept. i disapprove.

I disapprove of you acting like a dick, but I'm not in favor of legislation to prevent dickish behavior.

Your thread-shitting here? Dick move, but predictable. Do you have a bot here looking for the word "homophobe" just so you can drop the same turd again and again? You might as well just automate that part too.

Oh, and you still didn't answer my question. Should we be able to legislate against religious belief?

the conflation of racism with disapproval of certain sexual behavior.

No one's doing that. They're - you're - conflating racism with disapproval of sexual identity. Laws don't discriminate against cocksuckers, they discriminate against people who identify themselves as gay. I can be celibate, but the law in most US states will still prevent me from marrying the man I love.

You represent the fascist state.

I am amazed that someone can conflate the expansion of rights to more people to "the fascist state." No one here is calling for anti-quonsar legislation. If someone voices an abhorrent opinion, people here can respond by pointing that out; that's not fascism.
posted by me & my monkey at 6:48 PM on August 24, 2008 [2 favorites]


I am amazed that someone can conflate the expansion of rights to more people to "the fascist state."

Exactly. Lobbying for the expansion of civil rights and lobbying against the expansion of those same civil rights may both be permitted under a democracy, but each position is not equally democratic.

Seizetheday, if you really want to raise the specter of fascism in this discussion, you'd best consider how actual fascist states have historically treated homosexuality. (Hint: they're generally not the ones telling the quonsars of the world to put a sock in it.)
posted by scody at 7:10 PM on August 24, 2008


people here can respond by pointing that out

Sorry, but I don't view the words "who asked you, who really cares what you think" as "pointing that out". I view it as a direct call to silence the opinion because it's "wrong". Pointing it out would be, "Well, that's your opinion, and I think you're wrong."

It's the equivalent of being told to shut up. Which is a form of bullying, leading to a direct censoring of that opinion (if successful).

And my discussion of these rights to express an disliked opinion has no bearing on the "expansion of rights". You can wrap your spiel in a brand new silk American Flag, but that's doesn't change the fact that it's still an opinion being lobbied.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 7:11 PM on August 24, 2008


still an opinion being lobbied.

BTW, people used to be of the opinion that you should be 21 before you got the right to vote. People also used to be of the opinion that you should pay a tax before entering a polling place. Abortions weren't an inalienable right until 30 years ago. And even now, they're severely hampered because of the opinion that it's immoral.

All I'm saying is that it's an opinion to be for gay marriage, and opinion to be against. I think wrapping marriage into some form of an inalienable right is just wrong, because it's a legal distinction.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 7:19 PM on August 24, 2008


It's the equivalent of being told to shut up. Which is a form of bullying, leading to a direct censoring of that opinion (if successful).

Oh for fuck's sake. Do you honestly think quonsar feels bullied? Or that he'll censor his own opinion because someone typed something into a web site?

You know what? If someone tells me my rights are less important than theirs because they have a hangup about what I do with a consenting adult, I'm going to tell them to shut the fuck up.

You have absolutely no right to be shielded from the words "shut the fuck up." If your precious little ears hurt, too bad. Just as quonsar has the right to drop his little turds over and over again, I have the right to respond.
posted by me & my monkey at 7:24 PM on August 24, 2008


I think wrapping marriage into some form of an inalienable right is just wrong, because it's a legal distinction.

"Inalienable rights" are not the rights you have under the law. They're the rights that every human being should have, under the theory of natural rights. Until 1967, people of different races didn't have the legal right to marry each other in Virginia, either. Yet the Supreme Court decision that struck this down acknowledged that the Virginia law violated the inalienable right to marriage.
posted by me & my monkey at 7:33 PM on August 24, 2008


'Inalienable rights' doesn't seem to come into play here. We're talking about a right, inalienable or not, that is extended to one group of people and denied to another based on criteria that has been shown to have no legitimate legal basis; if it did, states would have no need to amend constitutions to specially and specifically codify it.
posted by troybob at 7:38 PM on August 24, 2008


So that's what it boils down to, correct? Your (general you) right to tell people to shut the fuck up? Because hey, your opinion is so clearly the correct one. But what happens when you aren't in a gay-friendly website? What happens when you're in a real live place where being pro-gay marriage is the minority? You still going to tell everyone to shut the fuck up? Probably not. You're probably going to argue the values of your opinion. Which is what should be happening here. Not people telling each other to shut the fuck up. But being asked to back it up with something. That's all I was trying to say in the first place.

denied to another based on criteria that has been shown to have no legitimate legal basis

My point was saying that marriage is not an inalienable right, gay or straight. I agree with the argument that gays and straights deserve equal rights, and equal protection. That's not the point, though. Marriage is like a driver's license. A privilege conferred by the state. Two gays sharing their lives and pursuing happiness, on the other hand, is an inalienable right (maybe, that's still just an opinion).
posted by SeizeTheDay at 7:45 PM on August 24, 2008


Your (general you) right to tell people to shut the fuck up?

OK. Every time the word "homophobe" is posted anywhere here, quonsar drops by to tell us all that discrimination against gay people isn't comparable to discrimination against black people. He tells us that it's ok to discriminate against me, because he disapproves of my "behavior." He's done this dozens of times, and doesn't respond to serious questions (see above.) So, it seems to me that "shut the fuck up" is a valid response here, just like with any other troll.
posted by me & my monkey at 8:14 PM on August 24, 2008 [2 favorites]


Can we ignore those two knuckle-dragging mouth breathers already? Anyone seriously proposing that granting rights is an act of fascism should be laughed out the country, let alone Metafilter. Can we not give those two trolls any more attention than they have already received?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:47 PM on August 24, 2008


Far be it for me to defend quonsar, but I object to your objection of his opinion. This is a democracy, and freedom of expression and being able to lobby Congress for whatever you want is still a right that I hold dear.

And I guess he's free to go pester Congress. This here is MeFi and so long as we're not in a thread discussing homosexuality to the degree of detail that we might care what he thinks, I don't see why we should put up with his turd-dropping an irrelevant aside about his opinion about homosexual behaviour. It's asshole behaviour.

there you with the "squicked out by homosexuals" crap again. i accept. i disapprove. "ergo" in your worldview, i must hate. ergo my ass. I said this:
I don't care if you accept or reject homosexual behaviour...

I don't even really care if you approve or disapprove... your approval or disapproval isn't going to stop anyone from doing something.
Nothing about hate. So maybe you aren't "squicked out."

Nonetheless, given this post:
Someone may not personally be a racist or a homophobe and yet still make the choice to act in a manner which empowers racism, homophobia, or other bigotry for his or her own personal advancement.
You respond with, to quote troybob, "the answer to the question, 'why is it okay to discriminate against these people, and not against these other people?'"

Well, your reason is stupid and wrong, and were society to operate with the discrimination which you appear to support, it'd be a worse society. It's a dinosaur mentality and it's not a mentality which leads to future success as a nation. Go make coprolite deposits elsewhere.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:50 PM on August 24, 2008


Sorry, but I don't view the words "who asked you, who really cares what you think" as "pointing that out". I view it as a direct call to silence the opinion because it's "wrong". Pointing it out would be, "Well, that's your opinion, and I think you're wrong."

By gum, we need more astrologers, creationists, flat-earthers, scientologists, homophobes, white power joes, pro-tobacco lobbyists, and time cube physicists posting their "corrections" in all our threads! Yes, let's do that! We can have incorrect "corrections" all the time!!!elevntyone~! Heck, MeFi could be like YouTube!

Quonsar can drop his turd of an opinion in those threads where it bears some sort of relevancy. Otherwise, he should keep his stupid "corrections" to himself. We do not need to tolerate his bigotry in all sorts of threads.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:01 PM on August 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Obama's Running Mate Biden Has Rare Political Trait: Decency, an interesting piece by, a bit oddly, John R. Lott.
posted by dawson at 9:58 PM on August 24, 2008


sexual behavior is not a civil rights issue, racism is. not that difficult to discern, i'm saying that in my opinion the continual, unquestioned pairing of racism with an objection to homosexual behavior is "apples and oranges".

But voluntary behaviors can still be protected rights. For example, freedom of religious worship and freedom of expression are both civil liberties original to the constitution, and they have everything to do with voluntary behavior. They're reserved as liberties not because they're involuntary stations assigned by birth, but because they're legal areas we've decided (for historical reasons) to restrict the government's access to.

I think both sexual orientation and race are viewed as protected classes under the 14th Amendment, but Griswold v Connecticut might also be read to put consensual sexual activity out of the government's reach. A lawyer would have to comment on that. Of course, defining "consensual" is still something the government gets to do, which gives them a possible inroad to restricting sexual behavior on a wider basis.
posted by kid ichorous at 10:02 PM on August 24, 2008


Obama's Running Mate Biden Has Rare Political Trait: Decency, an interesting piece by, a bit oddly, John R. Lott.

Interesting reading; thanks for the link. (Perhaps not terribly suprising that Lott heaped his laurels so he could conclude by getting his digs on Obama in.)
posted by brain cloud at 10:43 PM on August 24, 2008


You represent the fascist state. You represent everything you hate by arguing that his opinion doesn't count, and that it doesn't matter.

Dude. Get a grip. I'm not trying to use the government to prevent him from saying what he's saying. I'm saying that his disapproval is not necessary to the rest of society, as far as I see it. Who is he to approve or disapprove of anyone's personal lives? That's the authoritarian message, that you need approval to live your life the way you see fit. Hell, I don't really care if quonsar continues to pontificate or not, but I'll sure as hell call out bullshit when I see it.
posted by krinklyfig at 11:06 PM on August 24, 2008


Oh, and Biden, yeah, attack dog with lots of experience and spotless record is a strategically good pick. I am already burned out by this election season, but I can't object too much to Biden.
posted by krinklyfig at 11:12 PM on August 24, 2008


ericb said: And he (Jesus) hung out exclusively with twelve single, svelte ("Not that there's anything wrong with that") men, having dinners and drinks together with no women present.


Oh...but there were women. Remember? Washing his feet with tears and oils and drying them with her hair. Then again, I'm pretty sure the right-wing is ok with that part...
posted by dejah420 at 9:49 AM on August 25, 2008


I got this from NARAL:

Washington, D.C. Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, issued the following statement in response to Sen. Barack Obama's selection of Sen. Joe Biden as his vice-presidential running mate.

"Sen. Biden has consistently expressed support for a woman's right to choose. While we have not agreed with him on every vote, we have a longstanding relationship with Sen. Biden that is open, positive, and constructive, and we are confident this will continue in a new administration under Sen. Obama's pro-choice leadership.

"Most notably, Sen. Biden has a strong record of opposing judicial nominees with hostile anti-choice records. He voted against George W. Bush's two anti-choice nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court, John Roberts and Samuel Alito, and he opposed anti-choice Justice Clarence Thomas' nomination to the Court as well as multiple anti-choice nominees to lower federal courts.

"In addition, Sen. Biden has a strong record in opposition to anti-choice clinic violence and voted to hold anti-choice extremists convicted of violent attacks against doctors and patients at women's reproductive-health centers accountable for their criminal actions.

"Sen. Biden, who is a cosponsor of the landmark Prevention First Act, also has joined us in supporting commonsense efforts to prevent unintended pregnancy by improving women's access to birth control, ensuring teens receive accurate sex education, and supporting family-planning programs."

NARAL Pro-Choice America, which tracks all choice-related votes in Congress, classifies Sen. Biden's record as mixed choice.
posted by joannemerriam at 9:54 AM on August 25, 2008


International Reaction to Biden
posted by homunculus at 10:49 AM on August 25, 2008


This may come as somewhat of a shock, but Lawrence is only applicable within the USA.

Obviously it isn't a shock. Given the context of this thread and the tone of that comment, I assumed it was in reference to the US.
posted by Jaltcoh at 6:52 PM on August 25, 2008


Denver Police Halt Plot to Assasinate Obama

CBS4 has now learned at least four people are under arrest in connection with a possible plot to kill Barack Obama at his Thursday night acceptance speech in Denver. All are being held on either drug or weapons charges.

CBS4 Investigator Brian Maass reported one of the suspects told authorities they were "going to shoot Obama from a high vantage point using a ... rifle … sighted at 750 yards."

Law enforcement sources tell Maass that one of the suspects "was directly asked if they had come to Denver to kill Obama. He responded in the affirmative."

The story began emerging Sunday morning when Aurora police arrested 28-year-old Tharin Gartrell. He was driving a rented pickup truck in an erratic manner according to sources.

Sources told CBS4 police found two high-powered, scoped rifles in the car along with camouflage clothing, walkie-talkies, a bulletproof vest, a spotting scope, licenses in the names of other people and methamphetamine. One of the rifles is listed as stolen from Kansas.

Subsequently authorities went to the Cherry Creek Hotel to contact an associate of Gartrell's. But that man, who was wanted on numerous warrants, jumped out of a sixth floor hotel window. Law enforcement sources say the man broke an ankle in the fall and was captured moments later. Sources say he was wearing a ring with a swastika, and is thought to have ties to white supremacist organizations.

A third man -- an associate of Gartrell and the hotel jumper was also arrested. He told authorities that the two men "planned to kill Barack Obama at his acceptance speech."




And to think they were only found out because one of the men was "driving erratically"...
posted by Rhaomi at 7:55 PM on August 25, 2008 [1 favorite]


"Plot to Kill Obama: Shoot From High Vantage Point. Related: Anarchists And Police Clash In Downtown Denver Monday Night"

Related? How?
posted by homunculus at 8:03 PM on August 25, 2008


Jesus, that's scary. On the other hand, I have to think they'd have an awfully hard time getting a sniper rifle into the stadium Thursday night. That place is going to be crawling with Secret Service agents and law enforcement.
posted by EarBucket at 8:17 PM on August 25, 2008


EarBucket: "Jesus, that's scary. On the other hand, I have to think they'd have an awfully hard time getting a sniper rifle into the stadium Thursday night. That place is going to be crawling with Secret Service agents and law enforcement."

I don't know about that. The sheer processing nightmare posed by the large crowds Obama draws has forced security personnel to loosen weapons screening policies in the past. And the crowd at Invesco Field should be one of the largest yet seen -- 75-80,000 I think?

One would hope that now that the nomination is secure and the venue more high-profile, that the Secret Service and police forces will be a little more disciplined in their patrolling.
posted by Rhaomi at 8:28 PM on August 25, 2008


If, God forbid, Obama were killed after being nominated but before the election, would Biden become the candidate or would they go to the runner-up in the primaries?
posted by Rumple at 9:07 PM on August 25, 2008


I know which one Hillary would prefer...

(And no, of course I am not suggesting that she would have anything to do with it, no matter how insane the bloodsport of US politics is. But I am quite certain she would capitalize on it. As would the Republicans; Anyone But Clinton, yeah?)
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 10:09 PM on August 25, 2008


If, God forbid, Obama were killed after being nominated but before the election, would Biden become the candidate or would they go to the runner-up in the primaries?

That'd be up to the DNC; I assume it'd be a similar situation to Eagleton dropping out as McGovern's running mate. It's possible they'd re-convene the delegates for a second convention, with all of them released to vote for their choice, in which case you could have a fairly nasty floor fight between Obama supporters, most of whom would probably support Biden, and Clinton supporters. It's more likely that there'd be some sort of "back-room" negotiation to decide the outcome, which would then be rubber-stamped by the delegates. Possibly a compromise candidate; I could imagine someone like Al Gore being asked to step in if that happened.
posted by EarBucket at 5:19 AM on August 26, 2008


If, God forbid, Obama were killed after being nominated but before the election, would Biden become the candidate or would they go to the runner-up in the primaries?

If Obama died before the roll call, another name could be submitted and voted on. (Proposing a new vote or a change would merely require consent among the delegates, and I imagine in such a terrible situation this would be agreed to unanimously)

If Obama died after accepting the nomination, then the rules of the DNC will have officially declared Obama the nominee for the Democratic Party, and his name would be on the Democratic Party ballots in all states. Even though he's dead, he still would have won the nomination, and there is no such thing as a "vice nominee." Should Obama win the election, then Biden would instantly become president. It would be at his discretion to declare a VP before or after the election, but on paper Biden would remain the VP candidate until the actual certification of the election victory for Obama, at which point he would instantly become president and be allowed to appoint a VP.

As Obama will be the officially nominee of the Democratic Party for president come Thursday night, any attempts after that place someone else's name on the line, even with Obama's death, would end up going to court. Given that the ballots for each state would be under the jurisdiction of the state's Board of Elections and not a singular federal authority, it would probably be in the best interests of the Democrats to not try and remove Obama's name from the ballot, at the risk of creating a situation when only a portion of states allowed a name change before the election.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:25 AM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm pretty sure that if Obama were to be assassinated, you can throw the rule books out the window at that point, cause half the country would be burning down.
posted by empath at 7:17 AM on August 26, 2008


Of course, another possibility would be to keep Obama's name on the ballot, and then instruct the electors to vote for Biden, or Hillary, or whoever the DNC decided should step in. The Constitution's absolutely silent on this issue, and it's not at all clear who would have the claim to it.
posted by EarBucket at 7:49 AM on August 26, 2008


Okay, I think we can safely say that we've stumbled onto the one arena where I still retain some sort of primitive superstition, because SHUT UP SHUT UP LALALALALALALALALALA DON'T EVEN TALK ABOUT IT PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE

sorry.
posted by scody at 8:43 AM on August 26, 2008 [2 favorites]


Interesting, XQUZYPHYR. Do you have a citation for those rules?
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:44 AM on August 26, 2008


I had the same reaction scody.
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:45 AM on August 26, 2008


Thanks, XQUZYPHYR. I'd heard of dead people getting elected in the states before and I guess this would be the mother of all dead people story....

did I say Obama? I meant to say, what if MCCAIN WAS SHOT??
posted by Rumple at 10:00 AM on August 26, 2008


empath: I'm pretty sure that if Obama were to be assassinated, you can throw the rule books out the window at that point, cause half the country would be burning down.

Huh? Why is that?
The election was stolen once before and nobody really seemed to be giving a shit. Not even the candidate who was cheated out of his win. Why should things be different this time?

(Also note the shenanigans going on with voting machines right now. Nobody seems to care. Nobody is asking any tough questions.)
posted by sour cream at 10:16 AM on August 26, 2008


empath: I'm pretty sure that if Obama were to be assassinated, you can throw the rule books out the window at that point, cause half the country would be burning down.

sour cream: "Huh? Why is that?
The election was stolen once before and nobody really seemed to be giving a shit. Not even the candidate who was cheated out of his win. Why should things be different this time?

(Also note the shenanigans going on with voting machines right now. Nobody seems to care. Nobody is asking any tough questions.)
"

Are you joking?

I think that the average person would react a teensy bit more viscerally to seeing their candidate's brains blown out than to reading some story on Alternet about accusations of vote-rigging. Even if the upshot of the two vis-a-vis the outcome of the election is the same.
posted by Rhaomi at 10:42 AM on August 26, 2008


Well in this aspect Obama isn't a run of the mill candidate and the would be assassins are white supremacist so there could be a wee bit of side channel tension.
posted by Mitheral at 10:49 AM on August 26, 2008


Huh? Why is that?

I have no idea.
posted by scody at 11:21 AM on August 26, 2008


scody: I have no idea. (link to 1968 Washington D.C. riots)

Of course one difference between now and then is that now the most passionate supporters of Obama spend most of their political energy on the internet. And not on the streets. So I can't really see any real violence erupting.

And besides, if Obama is assassinated by white supremacists, who should Obamaists target anyway? Walmart?
I can see some rioting as a result, but that would be mostly by apolitical thugs that use the opportunity to mug the local Korean grocer or torch a couple of random cars. But nothing that's not under control within 2-3 days.
posted by sour cream at 11:36 AM on August 26, 2008


Of course one difference between now and then is that now the most passionate supporters of Obama spend most of their political energy on the internet. And not on the streets. So I can't really see any real violence erupting.

And besides, if Obama is assassinated by white supremacists, who should Obamaists target anyway? Walmart? if Obama is assassinated by white supremacists, who should Obamaists target anyway? Walmart?


I know you're joking, but you're betraying a remarkable lack of understanding of A) who supports Obama (you seem to think it's exclusively the white middle class) and therefore B) what kind of rage his assassination would unleash at many different levels of society.

But nothing that's not under control within 2-3 days.

Right, 'cause lord knows you can't cause much damage in a few days.
posted by scody at 11:47 AM on August 26, 2008


Martin Luther King died for an idea, an idea that was close to the heart of a significant portion of the population. When he was killed, it was a direct attack on their advancement, self-understanding and future.

What does Obama stand for? "Change" is the only thing that comes to mind. And just like the average Joe Sixpack (black or white) won't take to the streets to initiate change, he won't take to the streets for an assassinated Obama either.

BTW, the Rodney King riots were exactly what I had in mind. This is what it would look like. A couple of days of chaos in some cities and then everybody goes back to work. Maybe less then that. After the Rodney King incident, a minority felt insulted and discriminated by the majority. Would an assassination by white supremacist loonies have that effect? I don't think so. So my guess is: real opportunistic riots, but with less political passion.
posted by sour cream at 12:12 PM on August 26, 2008


Would an assassination by white supremacist loonies have that effect? I don't think so.

You honestly don't think that white supremacists assassinating the first person of colour to have a real chance of being elected POTUS would have much effect on people of colour?

Wow.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 12:20 PM on August 26, 2008


Did I say it would not have much effect?
No, I didn't.

What I said is that I can't see a mass uprising as a result.
Can you?
Do you really see black teachers, social workers, car mechanics, lawyers etc. start looting and rioting?
I can't. I can only see (a) Rodney King style riots for a few days and (b) peaceful demonstrations and candle light vigils by Obama supporters.

What do you think would happen exactly?
posted by sour cream at 12:42 PM on August 26, 2008


The Rodney King riots were exactly what I had in mind. This is what it would look like. A couple of days of chaos in some cities and then everybody goes back to work.

Yeah, 53 people killed and a billion dollars worth of property damage -- and then it's right back to work. Heck, that's just a raucous holiday weekend in some parts of the country!

Seriously, you really have no meaningful idea, do you? There are still neighborhoods here in L.A. that haven't fully recovered from '92. Oh, and as for the ease with which "everybody gets back to work" after a mere "couple of days of chaos," perhaps Reginald Denny might have an interesting perspective on that.
posted by scody at 12:47 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


What do you think would happen exactly?

The point is that it is impossible to predict what would happen. The possibility most certainly exists, given recent American history, that it could spark widespread upheaval across the country, resulting in further deaths and significant destruction.
posted by scody at 12:51 PM on August 26, 2008


What do you think would happen exactly?

Civil war. Depending on how things shake out.
posted by empath at 12:57 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


Widespread upheaval? I doubt it.

Reginald Denny was almost beaten to death by a bunch of thugs. If you think that black nurses, car mechanics, social workers, lawyers etc. would join in on the action, then you are apparently not thinking too highly of black people in general.

Civil war? Between who and who? Blacks and white supremacists? Democrats and Republicans? Gimme a break.
posted by sour cream at 1:11 PM on August 26, 2008


If you think that black nurses, car mechanics, social workers, lawyers etc. would join in on the action, then you are apparently not thinking too highly of black people in general.

If you're calling me a racist, then come out and say it so I can refute it directly. Otherwise, take your facile, ill-informed insinuations and shove them.

If you don't think that gang members (of various races) or white supremacists would take part in any upheaval that would be sparked by such a terrible event and thus escalate the situation (not to mention rioting that might occur as an offshoot of any other activities, such as perceived police brutality in a resultant crackdown, etc.), you clearly don't have too clear a grasp on the realities of racial tension in this country, nor of the increasing polarities of class in general in America (and in urban areas in particular), nor of the complexities of civil unrest in U.S. history, which shows time and time again that unrest, when sparked, is unpredictable.

I have no doubt that the vast, vast majority of people -- whether black, white, latino; whether middle-class, working-class, or poor -- would not take part in the most destructive of activities. Indeed, Bobby Green was a black truck driver who was among those who risked their own lives to rescue Reginald Denny. The point is -- and as the L.A. riots amply demonstrate (unless you truly think 53 dead is something to sneeze at) -- it doesn't require a majority of people to wreak extraordinary damage that results in significant and long-lasting consequences for individuals, communities, and entire cities.

Your insistence that the assassination of Obama wouldn't cause much upheaval -- and to diminish the effects of any upheaval that might happen -- is frankly bizarre. Of course I would hope that there would not be terrible consequences to such an unimaginably terrible action as Obama's assassination. But I'm not so naive to stubbornly insist that it couldn't happen, simply because I couldn't imagine taking part, or don't know anyone who would.
posted by scody at 2:06 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


Reginald Denny was almost beaten to death by a bunch of thugs.

I think one can safely assume that the first person of colour to contend for the presidency just might have a little bit more importance in the grand scheme of things than a truck driver, with concomitantly more severe reactions.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 2:06 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


If you think that black nurses, car mechanics, social workers, lawyers etc. would join in on the action, then you are apparently not thinking too highly of black people in general.

In fact, I think a lot of young white and lack professionals would get involved, and it would not have to be violent. A general strike would accomplish a lot.
posted by empath at 2:19 PM on August 26, 2008


With regard to the overconfidence I spoke about earlier: McCain took the first lead he has ever enjoyed in the Gallup daily tracking poll today. No, tracking polls aren't all that accurate. But the fact that McCain is leading for the first time in like 100 daily numbers is significant.

I want Obama to win so badly that it hurts; but he's losing ground. And picking Biden seems to have exacerbated the trend, probably because it caused some Clinton supporters who had believed he would pick Clinton to defect. Is this insurmountable? Of course not. But the fact that he lost ground in the days following his VP pick is not a good sign.

I really, really hope that Hillary Clinton gives the speech of her life tonight. I hope she tells anyone listening that if they vote for McCain, they were no supporter of hers and that's shes ashamed of them. That might do it.
posted by Justinian at 3:04 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


scody: I apologize, I did not mean to call you a racist. Also, I don't mean to poo-poo the extent of the Rodney King riots. They were terrible, sure enough, but my point is merely that riots on a larger scale are extremely unlikely.

dnab: I think one can safely assume that the first person of colour to contend for the presidency just might have a little bit more importance in the grand scheme of things than a truck driver, with concomitantly more severe reactions.

Rodney King was half beaten to death by a bunch of white police officers, representatives of the executive arm of the government if you will. Hence the rage against the "system", in particular the LAPD and, by some weird extension, other "oppressors" such as Korean shop owners. I just doubt that an assassination by white supremacists would trigger something fundamentally different on a fundamentally different scale, because the additional man-power (for lack of a better word) that would have to take part in such an event is too smart to confuse white supremacists with the government.

empath: In fact, I think a lot of young white and lack professionals would get involved, and it would not have to be violent. A general strike would accomplish a lot.

What exactly would a general strike accomplish? Would a general strike hurt the white supremacists in any way? What would be the goal of such a strike?
posted by sour cream at 3:16 PM on August 26, 2008


sour cream: cool, thanks. Sorry if I flew off the handle.

My feeling is just that there's just no way of knowing what might happen if -- god forbid, I really do hate even talking about it -- Obama were assassinated. I do know we agree that we hope never to find out!
posted by scody at 3:36 PM on August 26, 2008


Rodney King was half beaten to death by a bunch of white police officers, representatives of the executive arm of the government if you will. Hence the rage against the "system", in particular the LAPD and, by some weird extension, other "oppressors" such as Korean shop owners.

yes, and should (heaven forbid) Obama be assassinated, that rage would be directed at all of white america. Think on that. Racial tensions bubble barely under the surface as it is. For many African-Americans, Obama represents them finally hitting some measure of true equality. If a bunch of white supremacists kill him, it could very well be seen as The White Man putting The Black Man down on a Rodney King scale writ impossibly large. And I somehow doubt that would sit very well.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 3:43 PM on August 26, 2008


Justinian: I want Obama to win so badly that it hurts; but he's losing ground.

I've said it before: The coming months will see an international crisis, most probably with Russia, bordering on an armed conflict. This benefits Putin as much as it benefits the Republicans/Bush: Putin gets to extend his influence in the Caucasus, in particular Georgia, effectively cutting of one major oil pipeline supplying oil to Europe but circumventing Russia, while scoring points on the home front. The benefit to the Republicans/Bush is that Americans tend to vote conservative in times of crisis, just enough to get McCain into the White House. (We can't have any Democrats rifling through all that dirty laundry now, can we?) And even if it isn't enough, Diebold will take care of the remaining margin and all suspicions can be swept under the rug by repeating the mantra: "Americans vote Republican in times of crisis".

There will be more type-casting Obama as the inexperienced celebrity that is not ready to lead the nation into war. Obama's patriotism will be questioned. There'll be more TV ads pointing out McCain's military record. How American is Barack Hussein Obama really? These are difficult times for our country and we need stability. Continuity. "No experiments" might be a good slogan. (Hey, this stuff really writes itself!) Or the recent foiled attempt at Obama's life: "I don't mean to condone the actions of these extremists, but can our country afford a leader who is so divisive that he brings out the worst in some people?"

As for the media, ask yourself, in what income bracket are the people who contol the media? Compare the tax plans of McCain and Obama for that bracket (hint: McCain plans tax breaks for the super-rich as opposed to perhaps 10% (?) higher taxes under Obama). McCain will produce more than one gaffe, but strangely enough, you'll only see it on youtube, as the traditional media will mysteriously fail to mention it, or only to underscore the amount of negative campaigning by the Obama camp. Casting the media as "liberal" was perhaps the most brilliant move by the Republicans in the last 20 years.

It'll be close, but McCain will win. Mark my words.
posted by sour cream at 3:47 PM on August 26, 2008


It'll be close, but McCain will win. Mark my words.

I think it depends on whether the holdout Clinton supporters come over to Obama. Now, he can't and won't get them all; the fact is that even Clinton wouldn't have gotten all those votes in the general. Some people who voted for her in the primary would have voted for McCain in the general. But if he can get another 10% of her supporters, his ground game will carry the day.

I think it is hard to overestimate how important Clinton's speech tonight is.
posted by Justinian at 4:14 PM on August 26, 2008


Haha, remember when "I can't remember how many houses I own" was supposed to be the big turning point?

I just doubt that an assassination by white supremacists would trigger something fundamentally different on a fundamentally different scale, because the additional man-power (for lack of a better word) that would have to take part in such an event is too smart to confuse white supremacists with the government.


Here's the thing. My impression, which is admittedly not based on research, is that there is (and, in the 70s, undoubtedly was) a widespread, not broadly acknowledged perception amongst people of color that the government is secretly supporting white supremacists--or is at least allied with them, so that it can disclaim responsibility while they do the dirty work. This is a pretty reasonable belief, because for approximately a hundred years after the Civil War that's exactly what happened. Now, it's possible that this belief may be going away. But it's not quite dead enough that some Nazi knocking off Obama wouldn't dredge up memories of Martin Luther King and James Earl Ray in 1968--and lead to similar results (i.e. the shit hitting the fan in black neighborhoods all across the country).
posted by nasreddin at 4:27 PM on August 26, 2008


Much has been made of the timing of Hillary Clinton’s speech before the Democratic National Convention tonight, coming as it does on the 88th anniversary of women’s suffrage. Convention organizers are taking advantage of this coincidence of the calendar — the 19th Amendment was certified on Aug. 26, 1920 — to pay homage to the women’s vote in particular and women’s progress in general. By such tributes, they are slathering some sweet icing on a bitter cake. But many of Mrs. Clinton’s supporters are unlikely to be partaking. They regard their candidate’s cameo as a consolation prize. And they are not consoled.

Hillary concedes the candidacy to a man on Women's Equality Day and people wonder why her supporters have trouble supporting her male opponent? I wish we were having a more open conversation about the pain many women voters felt at Hillary's defeat by a man. Men, they have done it again. They supported a man over a woman. That is a bit of a simplification, but it is real and that anger is focused not just on men in general, or on men in the GOP, but men in the Democratic party who voted against Hillary.
posted by caddis at 4:53 PM on August 26, 2008




As for the media, ask yourself, in what income bracket are the people who contol the media? Compare the tax plans of McCain and Obama for that bracket (hint: McCain plans tax breaks for the super-rich as opposed to perhaps 10% (?) higher taxes under Obama).

CNN Thinks Only The Top Five Percent Of America’s Income Earners Count.
posted by ericb at 5:20 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


How American is Barack Hussein Obama really?

Fox News: “Obama-Biden, Osama bin Laden. Coincidence?”
posted by ericb at 5:24 PM on August 26, 2008


Interesting, XQUZYPHYR. Do you have a citation for those rules?

The rules for ballot placement are all varied by each state's election laws; as many have noted the presidential election is actually 51 elections and each state/DC would have its own hurdles regarding placing a new candidate past a deadline. The part about Biden instantly becoming president is covered by the 20th Amendment, Sec. 3: "If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President."
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:08 PM on August 26, 2008


I wish we were having a more open conversation about the pain many women voters felt at Hillary's defeat by a man.

By that, of course, you mean older white women. Since, well, black women of all ages and younger women of all races have supported Obama since the start of his campaign. So yes, let's have an open conversation about "many women voters" by being open about exactly who you're referring to here.

Personally, I've getting really sick and tired of this "vindictive bitch" stereotype the media and Hillary-hangers-on are casting on older white females suggesting they all should/will vote for McCain out of spite. It's incredibly demeaning.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:19 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, just keep telling these women that they are being overly emotional about this. That is sure to smooth everything over.

Sure, McCain is cynically exploiting this issue, but as bad as that is, it does not make the underlying issue go away.
posted by caddis at 7:14 PM on August 26, 2008


Quite frankly, they can go fuck themselves. They voted for a loser, and if they want to vote for another loser because their feelings got hurt, I could care less. Thankfully, we're not talking about a lot of people. And most of them just don't want to vote for Obama because he's black, if we're being honest.
posted by empath at 7:17 PM on August 26, 2008


I wish we were having a more open conversation about the pain many women voters felt at Hillary's defeat by a man.

What kind of seems to be supporting sexist stereotypes is all the talk about the pain these women have felt, how their emotions need to be examined deeply before we can move on to deciding who will run the country in just four months. Oh, we silly women! We're so controlled by our emotions that we cannot accept the defeat of a favored candidate in an election!

Sorry if that sounds kind of snotty; I just don't understand it all that well. It's politics -- every time there's an election, someone's dreams get destroyed. Why should we believe that this time, women need special treatment because they're unhappy with the result?

I can understand why these women are upset. I can understand why they took HRC's campaign so personally. I can even understand why they might take their anger out on Obama. But what I don't understand is why the rest of us should give these women greater allowances to be overly emotional than we would anyone who backed a losing candidate.
posted by Ms. Saint at 7:20 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


Obama took a big delegate lead in February that Clinton was never able to close. Her superdelegate support flatlined as more and more superdelegates supported Obama while she was claiming they'd support her. Obama outsmarted and outhustled Clinton. He was asking superdelegates for support in March 2007, over a year before she realized they were important. Clinton drug the primaries out for months after she had a realistic chance of winning*, emphasized her popular vote totals even though the primaries are decided by delegates and Obama got more votes anyway, and praised McCain and denigrated Obama on several occasions.

She conceded on June 7, which was at least a month after she had any realistic chance to win. It's almost September. There's less time between now and the election than has passed since Clinton conceded.

* Even though Clinton won some primaries after mid-March, she wasn't winning by enough to close the gap, and as the race drug on she would have had to win by increasingly lopsided margins that she wasn't getting, partly because Obama's strategy included keeping losses close.

Fox News: 'Obama-Biden, Osama bin Laden. Coincidence?'

Urge to kill...rising.
posted by kirkaracha at 7:31 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


I wish we were having a more open conversation about the pain many women voters felt at Hillary's defeat by a man. Men, they have done it again. They supported a man over a woman.

Goddammit, they did not. They supported Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton. Should I have voted for Hillary Clinton just because she's a woman? That's insulting to Hillary Clinton and it's insulting to me.

If Clinton had gotten the nomination would you be calling for a more open conversation about the pain many black people feel at Obama's defeat by yet another white person? They supported a white woman over an uppity negro, after all.
posted by Justinian at 7:34 PM on August 26, 2008


I'm a complete hypocrite, btw, because I wouldn't have voted for the Clintons if they had managed to steal the nomination.
posted by empath at 7:42 PM on August 26, 2008


, I've getting really sick and tired of this "vindictive bitch" stereotype the media and Hillary-hangers-on are casting on older white females suggesting they all should/will vote for McCain out of spite. It's incredibly demeaning.


Maybe it's stuff like this?

RNC "Happy Hour for Hillary"


Many major Clinton fund-raisers skipped the convention; others are leaving Wednesday, before Mr. Obama’s speech.


"There is a lot Obama could have done to unify the party, and basically he hasn’t lifted a finger."

posted by CunningLinguist at 7:53 PM on August 26, 2008


Hillary's nailing her speech at the convention.

I am honored to be here tonight. A proud mother. A proud Democrat. A proud American. And a proud supporter of Barack Obama.

My friends, it is time to take back the country we love.

Whether you voted for me, or voted for Barack, the time is now to unite as a single party with a single purpose. We are on the same team, and none of us can sit on the sidelines.

This is a fight for the future. And it's a fight we must win...

You haven't worked so hard over the last 18 months, or endured the last eight years, to suffer through more failed leadership.

No way. No how. No McCain.

Barack Obama is my candidate. And he must be our President.

posted by EarBucket at 7:54 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm enjoying her speech. She's not talking much about Obama personally, which is fine, she obviously doesn't like him much, but she's hitting the essential point that even if you DON'T like Obama personally, if you're a liberal you can't possibly be thinking of voting for the Republicans.
posted by empath at 7:59 PM on August 26, 2008


Oh man, she's nailing this speech. Bravo.
posted by empath at 8:03 PM on August 26, 2008


Yeah, she knocked that out of the park. I think that's the best speech I've heard her give.
posted by EarBucket at 8:08 PM on August 26, 2008


Agreed.
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:15 PM on August 26, 2008


It makes a lot of sense that next week John McCain and George Bush will be together in the Twin Cities, because these days they're awfully hard to tell apart.

Hee!
posted by dirigibleman at 8:16 PM on August 26, 2008


And "we don't need four more years of the last eight years."

Good speech.
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:21 PM on August 26, 2008


The most central and telling point of Clinton's speech was this:

I want you to ask yourselves: Were you in this campaign just for me? Or were you in it for that young Marine and others like him? Were you in it for that mom struggling with cancer while raising her kids? Were you in it for that boy and his mom surviving on the minimum wage? Were you in it for all the people in this country who feel invisible?

That is pure gold. It's pure gold because it's moving, and it's pure gold because it's true.

Anybody who claims to have supported Hillary Clinton and votes for John McCain after that was never a Clinton supporter in the first place. They may have fooled themselves into thinking they were, but they were not. And Hillary Clinton agrees.
posted by Justinian at 8:24 PM on August 26, 2008 [4 favorites]


Hillary Clinton for the win tonight! Great speech.
posted by ericb at 8:43 PM on August 26, 2008


Hillary's speech was fantastic. Before she began you could tell it was bittersweet for her -- maybe the thought going through her head was "this could have been my convention" -- but she delivered her part with class, and I hope her words hit home to the people who needed to hear them the most. I wish she'd campaigned that way during the primaries, actually, as I'd originally been prepared to back her, but she chose a different style instead that really turned me off. Can't wait for Bill tomorrow - that'll be verrrrry interesting.
posted by brain cloud at 9:06 PM on August 26, 2008


Justinian, I agree -- that was the home run of the speech. Nicely done.
posted by scody at 9:08 PM on August 26, 2008


...although it didn't seem to have much impact on the Clinton supporter who's now weeping about how Clinton's speech just proves why she should have been the candidate, and why she still doesn't feel like voting for Obama. *sigh*
posted by scody at 9:20 PM on August 26, 2008


the Clinton supporter who's now weeping about how Clinton's speech just proves why she should have been the candidate, and why she still doesn't feel like voting for Obama

Are these voting adults or voting children? She doesn't feel like voting for Obama? Tough shit: it's either vote for Obama or flush the country down the fucking toilet, lady. Are your feelings more important than making a start on fixing your broken system?

posted by five fresh fish at 9:39 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


Are your feelings more important than making a start on fixing your broken system?

YES THEY ARE AND BY THE WAY I ASKED FOR A PONY

posted by scody at 9:42 PM on August 26, 2008 [2 favorites]


it's either vote for Obama or flush the country down the fucking toilet, lady.

There's a third option: stop pinning all your hopes for change on symbols, institutions, and heroic figures, and go work on the problems of American society from the direction they'll really be solved. From the bottom up.
posted by kid ichorous at 11:12 PM on August 26, 2008


There's a third option: stop pinning all your hopes for change on symbols, institutions, and heroic figures, and go work on the problems of American society from the direction they'll really be solved. From the bottom up.

In order to do that, one must first find oneself at the bottom. A vote for McCain ought to achieve that.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:27 PM on August 26, 2008


The primaries were decided on personal/character issues: Would you rather want a woman or a black president? Then the entire experienced vs. non-experienced angle brought up by Hillary. But there were no significant differences in policy between the two camps.

It has been discussed before, but note that chosing Condy Rice as VP, McCain could score on several different fronts: With her you can get a VP who's black AND a woman (what more can you ask for, Democrats?). Rice will effectively neuter Biden in the VP debates, because there is no way he can attack Rice without looking like the racist prick many suspect him to be. There'll be fewer questions about McCain's age, because even in the event of an untimely demise, you'll have someone in the white house who's 10 times as experienced as Obama. She's also a recognized expert on Russia, which comes in handy with the looming stand-off with Russia. In a nutshell, she stands for change (black, female) AND for continuity.

Of course, there are the Republican die-hards who could never stomach a black woman in the white house, but maybe they can be offset by ex-Hillary voters, conservative black people and people whose only appeal of Obama is that he's black. And while I can't put my finger on it, I suspect she's more popular with Hispanic voters as well. But I'm sure someone is crunching or has crunched the numbers already.
posted by sour cream at 1:04 AM on August 27, 2008




The feds didn't plan to charge any of the three men with threatening a presidential candidate, a federal felony that comes with a possible five-year prison term.

I don't understand how driving to Denver with high-powered rifles and the express intent of shooting someone doesn't get you charged with threatening him, but these guys (who had no guns, no contact with al-Qaeda, no car, no camera, no freakin' shoes, no apparent plans to really do anything at all) get charged with being a terrorist cell. Does anyone think that three people who drove to Washington D.C. with guns and told the cops they were planning to shoot Bush wouldn't be rotting in a federal prison now, no matter how stupid they were?

It's almost as if the Justice Department isn't taking this as seriously as it should.
posted by EarBucket at 6:26 AM on August 27, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yeah, EarBucket, I feel like something is very wrong here. I haven't looked up the exact federal law in question. But this is pretty much the textbook definition of an assassination conspiracy, and even includes the overt act of acquiring the guns and equipment and driving to Denver. I really can't believe their logic amounts to "these were just a bunch of methheads idly talking." Legally speaking, the meth doesn't negate the specific intent of agreeing to kill Obama. Jeez. At the very least, charge these fools and let the courts sort it out.
posted by naju at 6:45 AM on August 27, 2008


note that chosing Condy Rice as VP, McCain could score on several different fronts

"I believe the title was 'Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States.'" Fail.
posted by kirkaracha at 6:55 AM on August 27, 2008


Anybody who claims to have supported Hillary Clinton and votes for John McCain after that was never a Clinton supporter in the first place.

Perhaps her gender and her persona had as much to do with their support as her policies, which don't differ much from Obama's. McCain is apparently toying with the idea of choosing Kay Bailey Hutchison as his veep. If he does he will likely pick up a lot of disaffected Hillary supporters and I think it may even then become McCain's race to lose. I frankly don't know how big of a group this is. Most of the Hillary supporters I know are firm Obama supporters now, but there are a few holdouts. I know in one instance that race is likely the issue. My point is that to dismiss these voters as just a bunch of whiny losers probably means you push them over to McCain.
posted by caddis at 7:07 AM on August 27, 2008


I really can't believe their logic amounts to "these were just a bunch of methheads idly talking."

All you need, to understand the decision not to charge these bozos with any kind of conspiracy, is to watch a bit of this jailhouse interview with one of them.
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:13 AM on August 27, 2008


I should think the cops would want to lay on the charges thick and heavy, as a disincentive to anyone else who's thinking of pulling the same stunt. 'cauase basically they've just told everyone "hey, come and make the attempt and if you're caught, act like a meth head and you'll get off scot free!"
posted by five fresh fish at 7:16 AM on August 27, 2008 [2 favorites]


All you need, to understand the decision not to charge these bozos with any kind of conspiracy, is to watch a bit of this jailhouse interview with one of them.

Yes, because politicians have nothing to fear from losers and crazies.
posted by EarBucket at 7:28 AM on August 27, 2008


All you need, to understand the decision not to charge these bozos with any kind of conspiracy, is to watch a bit of this jailhouse interview with one of them.

Well I've watched about fifteen minutes, and I still don't understand the decision. Maybe I'm being dense? I'd need to hear all of the guys' interviews. Even this guy himself says that, with all the evidence laid out, maybe there WAS a conspiracy. He just claims that he wasn't involved in what the other guys were doing. He even says directly, "I can see it going on... I guess I can see it being possible." One of the people he's saying this about, he's known for 15 years.
posted by naju at 7:31 AM on August 27, 2008


The men should definitely be charged with conspiracy, but since when is a Ruger .22-250 considered a "high-powered rifle?" It's for hunting prairie dogs and is banned for deer hunting because it's too underpowered. I guess it just wouldn't sound as menacing if the newspapers printed "inexpensive squirrel-hunting rifle."

I mean, isn't the fact that they were planning to fucking assassinate Barack Obama bad enough? Why does it need to be sexed up-"camouflage clothing?" Has the media never heard of rednecks?
posted by Hiding From Goro at 4:28 PM on August 28, 2008


I thought, what the hey, let's open up a thread at PoliticalFilter and get this thing going. Head over there if you want to discuss / liveblog tonight's events.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:24 PM on August 28, 2008




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