No attempted political smear like an old attempted political smear


This New York Times photo feature is making the e-mail and Facebook rounds of Republicans and anti-Obamaniacs:

Obama carrying Zakaria's book, in 2008 - NY Times photo by Doug Mills

Then-candidate Barack Obama carrying a copy of Fareed Zakaria‘s best-selling book on why America has an optimistic future, The Post-American World, on the campaign trail in 2008

Should have noted, it’s making the rounds yet again.

In the note I got most recently, the sender posted this — probably a copy and paste message:

This picture will stun you

If each person sends this to a minimum of 20 people on their address list, in three days,
all people in The United States of America would have the message.
I believe this is one proposal that really should be passed around.
________________________________________________________________

THIS WILL CURDLE YOUR BLOOD AND CURL YOUR HAIR

Description: cid:image001.jpg@01CCB96D.4D1AFD50

The name of the book Obama is reading is called: The Post-American World, and it was written by a fellow Muslim.

“Post” America means the World After America ! , Please forward this picture to everyone you know, conservative or liberal. , Democrat or Republican, Folks we need to be aware of what our president is thinking–or planning
We must expose Obama’s radical ideas and his intent to bring down our beloved America!

Oy.  Where to begin with the factual corrections?

First, Zakaria is not exactly a Muslim extremistHe was born in India, a secular nation which practices religious diversity by law, his mother a former editor of The Sunday Times of India, his father a member of the popular Indian National Congress, the party of Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira and Rajiv Gandhi, and Manmohan Singh, to mention four famous Prime Ministers of India.

Fareed Zakaria, Editor, Newsweek International...

Fareed Zakaria, [then

Second, Zakaria is a highly-respected journalist with great experience in international affairs.  He’s a former columnist for of Newsweek, and was editor of Newsweek International (is that American enough?).  Currently he has a column in Time, and a regular slot on CNN, Fareed Zakaria GPS, after a program on PBS and assignments for ABC.  You probably know the man by sight, and he doesn’t scare you in your living room.

Third, it’s not about “after” America — it’s about life in the world after several other nations figure out the U.S. secrets to success (freedom and trade), and apply them to become, like the U.S., a world power.  Not the world “after America,” but the world after the domination of America and Pax Americana.  The note in the New York Times said:

Writing in the Book Review a few weeks ago, Joseph Joffe said about Zakaria’s book:

Zakaria’s is not another exercise in declinism. His point is not the demise of Gulliver, but the ”rise of the rest.” After all, how can this giant follow Rome and Britain onto the dust heap of empire if it can prosecute two wars at once without much notice at home? The granddaughters of those millions of Rosie the Riveters who kept the World War II economy going are off to the mall today; if they don’t shop till they drop, it’s because of recession, not rationing.

“Not another exercise in declinism.” Want to bet the people passing the photo around didn’t bother to read Zakaria’s book?  Heck, they didn’t even bother to check it out on Amazon, or Wikipedia.  Anyone who thinks this photo sinister clearly could use a good read of the book — if they can read.

Fourth, Zakaria’s book has an entire chapter on keeping the U.S. from falling into decline — it’s not a book to”bring down our beloved America,” but is instead a book aimed at doing the exact opposite.  Zakaria outlines how the U.S. can maintain influence and power in a world where superpower influence is problematic rather than an enormous advantage at all times, and a world where trade is better than war.

Fifth, The Post-American World got a lot of praise from conservative, Republican- and Libertarian-leaning people when it was published.  The pedestrian Wikipedia explained:

The Post-American World, at 292 pages long, was described as “a book-length essay”[5] and a “thin book that reads like one long, thoughtful essay”.[6] Written with an optimistic tone, it features little new research or reporting, but rather contains insights and identification of trends.[5] The reviewer for The Wall Street Journal described the tone as “infectious (though not naive) sunniness…but without Panglossian simplicity”.[1] The American Spectator reviewer noted that the prose had a journalistic style[7] while the reviewer for The Guardian noticed the writing sometimes displayed “news magazine mannerisms”.[8]

Zakaria’s view on globalisation was said to be similar to journalist and author Thomas Friedman.[9][10] Friedman reviewed The Post-American World and called it “compelling”.[11] The review in American Conservative compared this book with Rudyard Kipling‘s poems “Recessional” and “The White Man’s Burden“, both written at the height of British power and warning against imperial hubris.[12] The American Spectator review listed it as adding to similar themed books, comparing it to Oswald Spengler‘s The Decline of the West (1918), Arnold Toynbee‘s A Study of History, Paul Kennedy‘s The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers (1987), and Robert Kagan‘s The Return of History and the End of Dreams (2008).[7] Kagan labeled The Post-American World as “declinist”;[13] however, Martin Woollacott of The Guardian labeled Zakaria an exceptionalist.[8] The Commentary review added the works of Samuel P. Huntington and Francis Fukuyama to the list of comparisons and suggested there is now a sub-genre of books that consider the decline or demise of American hegemony.[14]

Wall Street Journal, American Spectator, Commentary — any self-respecting, halfway well-read neo-conservative would have all of those sources on her desk today.

Having read Zakaria’s book should be an indication of American patriotism.  Dwight Garner’s comment at Art Beat, a blog of the New York Times, said the photo was a “stylish book-ad,” and he meant it as a compliment.  He closed off his note:

Anyone know what book John McCain is — or should be — carrying around?

Grand question.  I’ll wager McCain knows the book, if he hasn’t read it.

But what about Mitt Romney?  I’ll wager he didn’t bother to read it.  Rick Santorum?  Surely not.  Newt Gingrich probably read it quickly, over-analyzed it, found some minor issue of historical interpretation to disagree with, and pronounced it not worthy of actual citation.

The people who try to raise fears with the photo?  They probably don’t read newspapers, don’t have library cards, and they hope to hell you’re too busy updating your Facebook profile to know anything at all about reality and world history.  Would they send the photo around if they had Clue #1?

Sixth, the book came out in 2008.    Even the paperbacks are in new editions with revisions, it’s been out so long.

How desperate are the Obama-obsessed folk?  They’re so desperate they are recycling hoaxes from 2008.  Worse, they find people willing to be hoaxed all over again, forgetting they got hoaxed back then.

Voter identification?  How about a voter sanity check?  Given a choice, a sane person might say “let illegal aliens vote, instead” — they know more about America and what makes it great than the perps of this hoax.

Is it significant that Zakaria has not been shy about criticizing serious policy errors promulgated by Republican candidates for president?  Nah.

More:

Even More, with help from Zemanta

35 Responses to No attempted political smear like an old attempted political smear

  1. Morgan writes:
    How come the blacks lost their right to vote? How come it was one half and not the other half? Do you know, or did you only pay attention to developing events long enough to confirm your prejudices and then scramble off to write a screed or two? It really looks like the latter; I think you’d be surprised to learn how much.

    Well the only legal means to lose your vote is to either be in prison and lose them that way..or to renounce your citizenship in the United States. Last time I checked, being poor and being black (or any other skin color) is not a justifiable reason.

    Do you really want to claim that half of all blacks in that state, and quite a large swath of others, did that?

    Because the deciding factor seems to have been that the areas in question were poor and well in the case of Benton Harbor…that they refused to sell their one park to a business that wanted to turn it into a exclusive rich man’s golf course. Oh and did I mention that Benton Harbor’s Republican state Representative is one of the owners of that business?

    Sorry, Morgan, there is no actual valid reason for the Governor of Michigan to have stripped anyone of their right to vote. Oh and before you think I was alleging racism..the reason I specifically mentioned blacks was because it was the “half of all blacks in the state” part. If it had been half of all whites I would have did the same exact thing. I never said it was only blacks who lost their right to vote..but they do seem rather to be the group singled out the most.

    As for what Reagan said..yeah you know that applies equally well to Republicans and conservatives.

    But this is also what Reagan said, just to quote something he said you won’t like: We’re going to close the unproductive tax loopholes that allow some of the truly wealthy to avoid paying their fair share. In theory, some of those loopholes were understandable, but in practice they sometimes made it possible for millionaires to pay nothing, while a bus driver was paying ten percent of his salary, and that’s crazy. [...] Do you think the millionaire ought to pay more in taxes than the bus driver or less?

    Gee..who knew that Reagan was really a socialist….

    Anyways, to get back to the point, do you really think that entire towns should lose their right to decide who their local leaders are? What their town’s ordinances are? What their zoning laws are? Do you really think that someone appointed to the job by solely the Governor should be able to walk into town, dismiss that town’s local officials, sell off that town’s assets like parks and the local radio stations, unilaterally sieze properties and sell them off and even, if so decided, end the existance of the town?

    I thought you republicans were for small government and local government? And yet your party gave one of it’s governors what amounts to dictatorial powers that allow him to strip his own citizens of their own right to democracy. I thought your party was oh so in favor of democracy?

    Sorry, Morgan, where in the US Constitution does it say that people can lose their right to vote because the Governor of a state ordered it?

    If Obama stripped, say, the state of Texas of its government and appointed someone to manage it you and every other Republican in the country would be jumping up and down in protest. If your governor was a Democrat and he did that to your town you’d be jumping up and down howling mad.

    And guess what…you’d be right.

    So you might want to question whether or not I was really being prejudiced or not. Because I’d have the same problem with the action whether the governor in question was a Republican or a Democrat or hell..even a three headed alien from mars. Then you might want to question your own prejudices since you don’t even seem able to say “no, this action is wrong” just because it’s being done by the Republicans.

    Someone wiser then either of us once said that the greatest threat to democracy comes not from without…but from within. He was right. *points to Michigan’s governor and that states Republican party* there is a threat to democracy.

    So the question I guess, Morgan, is has your party fallen so far from grace that it is now actively subverting and outlawing democracy? At least as far as the Michigan GOP is concerned.

    Can you even say they are wrong? Because you have a party in power that is stripping their own citizens of the right to vote. And you have a party in power that is actively lying about the tally of votes on that “Emergency Manager law” Or do you honestly think that every single democrat in Michigan’s legislature voted against that law, which they did, and when they lost 12 of them voted to put that law they just voted against into immediate effect? Because that is what had to happen for that law to take immediate effect..that 12 Democrats voted against the law..but somehow voted to have the law take effect immediately.

    Or will you continue to defend the Republican party in Michigan for no reason other then blind loyalty? Because its not like you proved me wrong in your response to what I said..that you would not have a problem with the Michigan state GOP having stripped its citizens of their right to vote. At no point in what you said did you even come close to condemning the Michigan GOP. You didn’t even come close to saying that they might be wrong.

    And do you honestly think that a party that has stripped, in this case, half of all blacks of the right to vote on local matters won’t think it justified to also strip them of their right to vote on state and national matters? Because, as I said, the two groups that seem to be singled out by the GOP in Michigan for this..treatment is blacks and the poor.

    Gee..I wonder which party blacks and the poor predominantly vote for….

    Like

  2. And yet I’m willing to bet that neither you nor Joe have a problem with the Michigan Republicans having stripped 50% of all blacks in that state of their rights to vote on local issues/school boards/city councils.

    How much you willing to bet? You probably don’t know Joe and you certainly don’t know me. Reagan once said, the problem with liberals isn’t that they only know a little, the problem is that they know so much that isn’t so. He must have had you in mind: Seldom correct but never in doubt.

    How come the blacks lost their right to vote? How come it was one half and not the other half? Do you know, or did you only pay attention to developing events long enough to confirm your prejudices and then scramble off to write a screed or two? It really looks like the latter; I think you’d be surprised to learn how much.

    Like

  3. Morgan writes:
    Why would anyone be against that? Using the simplistic all-or-nothing logic you’ve been so proud to apply elsewhere, in other subjects, over and over again — your opposition to this sensible regulation would have to mean you’re in favor of vote-fraud, right?

    And yet I’m willing to bet that neither you nor Joe have a problem with the Michigan Republicans having stripped 50% of all blacks in that state of their rights to vote on local issues/school boards/city councils.

    And yet I’m willing to bet neither you nor Joe have a problem with this particular piece of chicanery: Michigan’s state constitution says that all laws passed take effect 90 days after the end of the session. the michigan legislature is in session year round and they usually end the session right before Christmas. So conceivably a bill could be passed in Janurary and not take effect until March the following year. So the state constitution has a provision that allows a law to take immediate effect if 2/3rd’s of the state legislature votes for it. THe Republicans don’t have a 2/3rds majority. THey need 12 Democrat votes to make it a 2/3rds majority. None of the Democrats voted for that “Emergency manager law” or any of the other rather radical Republican laws..and yet all those laws got entered into the official record and went into immediate effect.

    Oh in case you don’t know, the “Emergency Manager law” is the law the Republicans have used to strip, among others, 50% of blacks of their right to vote on local matters in Michigan.

    Tell me, Morgan, if you and your party are so worried about “accuracy and integrity of the voting system” then why in hell is your party so bent on stripping people of their right to vote? It seems that your party has a problem with democracy when democracy puts in power the Democrats…

    Like

  4. Ed Darrell says:

    And, shocker of shockers, I don’t find the excerpts convincing.

    I noted earlier that even the internet-infamous Gunny G saw through the e-mail and it’s prevarications. You can’t, Morgan?

    I detailed the falsehoods. You’ve not offered any contradictory nor even contrasting evidence. Yet you draw a different conclusion, you claim.

    Yeah, you can draw an irrational conclusion based on no evidence — it’s your right. That’s not my myopia if you do, you know?

    Like

  5. Ed Darrell says:

    I had said: Anyone who thinks this photo sinister clearly could use a good read of the book — if they can read.

    Morgan responded:

    I’m pretty sure they can.

    I’m from Missouri on this. Show me. I don’t see any evidence yet.

    Have you read it, Morgan?

    Like

  6. And, shocker of shockers, I don’t find the excerpts convincing.

    That’s just the kind of world in which we all live, Ed. It’s got opinionated people in it who arrive at their own conclusions. They agree with you, or they don’t, and what’s really surprising is this: They might be fully conscious and fully aware of these snippets of the book in question, in fact know more about the author than you do, and still disagree with you about what things mean.

    From all that you’ve written, it seems you still haven’t adjusted to this. Maybe this is the year.

    Like

  7. Ed Darrell says:

    Read what they wrote, Morgan. I quote directly.

    Like

  8. Hoax isn’t strong enough. The people who pass the photo around wish to leave the impression that it’s a book written by a Muslim extremist…

    Oh…what’s that? In order to find something untrue about it, you need to read into their intentions. And you say hoax is not strong enough?

    So how am I to conclude that you’re not doing exactly what you accuse these others of doing?

    Like

  9. Oh yes…the author is such an anti-American there….

    At what point, Morgan, do you stop defending the stupid and the crazies and their equally stupid and crazy claims just because they’re on your side of the political fence?

    At what point has your soul atrophied enough from the rampant lies you defend?

    Like

  10. Ed Darrell says:

    Here, read an excerpt of the book in question:

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2008/05/03/the-rise-of-the-rest.html

    Among many other things, Zakaria wrote:

    The threats we face are real. Islamic jihadists are a nasty bunch—they do want to attack civilians everywhere. But it is increasingly clear that militants and suicide bombers make up a tiny portion of the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims. They can do real damage, especially if they get their hands on nuclear weapons. But the combined efforts of the world’s governments have effectively put them on the run and continue to track them and their money. Jihad persists, but the jihadists have had to scatter, work in small local cells, and use simple and undetectable weapons. They have not been able to hit big, symbolic targets, especially ones involving Americans. So they blow up bombs in cafés, marketplaces, and subway stations. The problem is that in doing so, they kill locals and alienate ordinary Muslims. Look at the polls. Support for violence of any kind has dropped dramatically over the last five years in all Muslim countries.

    And later in the same excerpt:

    More broadly, this is America’s great—and potentially insurmountable—strength. It remains the most open, flexible society in the world, able to absorb other people, cultures, ideas, goods, and services. The country thrives on the hunger and energy of poor immigrants. Faced with the new technologies of foreign companies, or growing markets overseas, it adapts and adjusts. When you compare this dynamism with the closed and hierarchical nations that were once superpowers, you sense that the United States is different and may not fall into the trap of becoming rich, and fat, and lazy.

    Like

  11. Morgan writes:
    Your link does nothing to refute the fact that Obama was carrying the book, nor does it place in question any of the facts relevant…it disagrees about the conclusion to be reached. “Hoax” is a rather strong word to use, isn’t it?

    Yes, he was carrying the book. The hoax, Morgan, is the nonsense claims made by conservatives about what the book says. And that you and other conservatives are stupid enough to fall for those claims. That you’re stupid enough to be led around by the nose by your fellow Republicans without reading the book is your stupid fault, not ours.

    Morgan writes:
    James K., I graciously accept your admission of defeat — that’s how I read it whenever you retreat into the “All problems can be solved by loading Republicans into a big rocket and firing it into the sun” thing. Fine

    I admit no such defeat, child. Nor do I wish Republicans to be loaded into a big rocket and fired into the sun. You, however, can not the same about Democrats since you and your fellow Republicans constantly act like Democrats are enemies of the United States and of God. What I want for Republicans is for them to get back to being a center right rational party that isn’t prone to sheer unadulterated lunacy. Considering that you yourself have tried painted Democrats as Socialists it is actually you who is admitting defeat. Considering more then a few members of your party think Democrats should be shot…yeah…the defeat is yours, using your logic.

    Morgan writes:
    Why would anyone be against that? Using the simplistic all-or-nothing logic you’ve been so proud to apply elsewhere, in other subjects, over and over again — your opposition to this sensible regulation would have to mean you’re in favor of vote-fraud, right?

    The Bush administration spent 5 years looking for mass voter fraud and in that 5 years found exactly 300 cases. 99% of which was former felons voting when they’re not allowed to. Which, by the by, Voter ID wouldn’t stop since 1: Your drivers license doesn’t say whether or not you’ve been in prison and 2: unless things have majorly changed from 20 years ago when I was in college…it isn’t that hard to get fake IDs. Besides the fact that you have to prove who you are when you register to vote.

    Voter ID is about conjuring up a made up problem that doesn’t actually exist all so Republicans can keep “undesirables” from exercising their legal right to vote. Those undesirables being blacks, latinos, other minorities, senior citizens and college age kids.

    If your party was so interested in the “integrity of the election system” it would 1: take a hard look at all the election fraud perpetrated by, mainly, Republicans and 2: would look into alternatives to “Voter ID” that would actually be useful and actually do the job. Curiously my Secretary of State, a Democrat, proposed tying all Minnesota voting precients into the state voter rolls as an alternative to “Voter ID”. He also proposed that the state send out documents to all former felons explaining whether they can or can’t vote.

    Every single Republican in my state’s legislature opposed it. Gee I wonder why…. Even better..one of those Republicans opposing it was the former Republican secretary of state who spent all her time making it as difficult as possible to vote and who “accidentally” purged more then a few blacks from the rolls who could legally vote.

    Generally, Morgan, if one party is trying to restrict voting and the other party wholly opposes it..it’s not a good idea. One should not be screwing with the right to vote in this country out of partisan politics.

    That and “Voter ID” is straight out of Jim Crow laws.

    As for “simplistic all-or-nothing logic” oh please don’t even go there little person who paints everything he disagrees with as socialism and who belongs to a party who couldn’t even bring themselves to compromise on health care reform when the President decided to use a system (insurance mandate) that was first created by the Republicans 19 years ago.

    It seems to me, little Republican, that if your party wasn’t interested in “all or nothing logic” then your party would have accepted the use of an idea they originally created as an alternative to…well….single payer health care. And yet you can’t even bring yourself to chide your own party for its own refusal to compromise and to insist on this “all or nothing” logic you try painting me with.

    If you want to kvetch about “all or nothing” approaches, child, start with your own party. Does your party want to compromise on health care? No. Voter ID? No. Anti-union bulldrek? no. Taxes? no. Spending? No. Hell your party won’t even put your own party’s spending programs on the chopping block. Nor does your party want to compromise on abortion, contraception or anything having to do with sex and especially not women and homosexuals. Nor does your party want to compromise on immigration and your party seems bent on starting a war in Iran because the one in Iraq went so jolly good.

    In fact I can’t think of a single thing in the last few years that your party has been willing to compromise on…ever since the tea party lunatics took over your party has been operating entirely from an “all or nothing” approach.

    I’m perfectly willing to compromise with Republicans, even you Morgan,………………….just as soon as you and your party start compromising.

    But don’t expect me to hold my breath on you or yours compromising. And don’t expect me to not keep one hand clenched in a fist in case you and yours are stupid enough to try and throw a punch.

    So when it comes to discarding “all or nothing” approaches, Morgan…..

    ….put up or shut up. In this case that means the first thing you say in reply to what I said above better be you criticizing the Republicans for their adherence to “all or nothing.” And the next thing after that better be you apologizing for all the times the word “socialism” came out of your fat mouth.

    If you don’t…well…you just admitted defeat then.

    Anyways, so the President had that book. So what? What does that prove? Other then that he read the book and your side hasn’t and had no problem in making up bulldrek claims? What? You have no problem with some members of your party being nothing but sociopathic liars? That says quite a lot about you….and none of it good.

    Like

  12. Ed Darrell says:

    Morgan . . . dissembles? . . . replies:

    Ed, you’re once again using DarrelLogic.

    Toulmin, Reicke, Sillars, Brockreide logic, the guys I studied and studied under. I acknowledge your flattery, but let’s be accurate here.

    Your link does nothing to refute the fact that Obama was carrying the book, nor does it place in question any of the facts relevant…it disagrees about the conclusion to be reached. “Hoax” is a rather strong word to use, isn’t it?

    I’m a firm believer in accuracy, and not misleading. Hoax isn’t strong enough. The people who pass the photo around wish to leave the impression that it’s a book written by a Muslim extremist — it’s not. They wish to convince you (and it appears you’ve been suckered in) that the book is a problem, rather than a very mainstream, conservative discussion of U.S. foreign policy in the 21st century by one of our better currently practicing, foreign-affairs expert journalists. Obama carried the book and he deserves your admiration for reading stuff like that at any time, but especially in the heat of a campaign. It’s a sign of genius and patriotism.

    So, it’s a hoax to claim otherwise, as the hoaxsters — and sadly, you — wish to claim.

    I wonder if I can get you to admit just that much. Seems like it should be do-able, since you run a blog that is supposed to be dedicated to debunking such hoaxes…you should be able to state in useful terms what one is.

    Why do you think it’s a problem that Obama read that book? Why do you refuse to acknowledge the hoax? You’re a guy who claims to educated and informed — what is your aversion to the truth in this case? What part of “hoax” is unclear to you?

    The claims in the e-mail are false. Obama is not The Scary Black Man. Obama is not Moslem. For that matter, I’ll wager you’f have a difficult time establishing that Zakaria is Moslem. (“Muslim.” Pick your spelling.) Why do you insist on denying the facts and spreading false information here?

    You have a lot of gall to ask me to say the truth is inaccurate, you know? It’s a form of blindness in the conservative movement today, a dangerous and potentially fatal blindness.

    In fact, let’s count the falsehoods in that e-mail:

    1. Blood doesn’t curdle. If they mean people will be shocked, they are trying to make a case that cannot be honestly made. A presidential candidate was reading a book on U.S. foreign policy that was #2 on the New York Times best seller list. Why should anyone but a fool find that shocking?

    2. Obama’s not a Muslim.

    3. Consequently, Zakaria could not be a “fellow Muslim.”

    4. Zakaria’s not a much of Muslim, either (three lies in two words — is that a world record?).

    5. “Post-American World” does not mean “after America,” in the book — nor grammatically. “Post-American” modifies “world” in the title, and it refers to a world that is not dominated in virtually every sphere by the U.S.A. The hoaxsters flunk grammar, too — and expect you to be so gullible and ill-informed that you won’t catch it (seriously, Morgan — you didn’t catch that?). You can’t even judge a book by its cover, the old saw goes, and so it’s just a bizarre hallucination to claim that one can tell the thoughts of a man carrying a book we can’t judge by its cover, in this case a cover that we know has been misinterpreted and misrepresented.

    6. The fact that Obama is reading a book cannot possibly tell us what he is thinking. For all we know, he was looking for material to use against Sen. McCain in a debate. For all we know he was extremely critical of Zakaria’s views. But to claim that we can tell a man’s thoughts by the cover of a book he didn’t write is stretching the powers of reason far past the breaking point.

    7. There is no indication at all that Obama “[intends] to bring down our beloved America.” That’s a whole cloth fabrication, a scurrilous and contemptible lie.

    No, I will not do as you bid and deny the truth.

    James K., I graciously accept your admission of defeat — that’s how I read it whenever you retreat into the “All problems can be solved by loading Republicans into a big rocket and firing it into the sun” thing. Fine, now you seek comfort in changing the subject, let’s change it. Voter ID laws? That’s just regulation of something that needs regulating, right? Don’t voter ID laws simply regulate the process of voting, the same way other laws regulate clean air, drinkable water, healthy safe meat, et al?

    Voter ID laws run contrary to the 1965 Voting Rights Act. They are modern-day Jim Crow laws designed to reduce voting among senior citizens, youth, Hispanics and African Americans — all of whom, tend to vote for Obama and other Democrats. There is no problem with voter fraud due to lack of ID. The past two spectacular convictions for voter fraud — in Maryland and in Indiana, of Republicans were convicted of various schemes — and all those convicted had valid I.D. The cases did not inolved the use of I.D. at all.

    Texas’s law requires certain state-issued identification cards. In 81 of our 254 counties, however, there is no office at which a voter may obtain those identification cards. In Texas, every voter is vetted for eligibility upon registration — why do it again? Only to frustrate and discourage voters from voting.

    Why would anyone be against that? Using the simplistic all-or-nothing logic you’ve been so proud to apply elsewhere, in other subjects, over and over again — your opposition to this sensible regulation would have to mean you’re in favor of vote-fraud, right?

    Can you find any case in the U.S. in which voter fraud was committed, which could have been prevented by the use of any voter I.D. law? If you do, you’ll be among the first, if not the first.

    Following your logic, we should have a law that allows the cops to come into your home and rifle through your entire library to discourage terrorism, which may be evidenced by any writings you have that encourage terrorists. Who could be opposed to ending terrorism?

    Why would you support this hoax, Morgan? Are there other forms of lying do you think we should tolerate?

    Like

  13. Ed, you’re once again using DarrelLogic. Your link does nothing to refute the fact that Obama was carrying the book, nor does it place in question any of the facts relevant…it disagrees about the conclusion to be reached. “Hoax” is a rather strong word to use, isn’t it? I wonder if I can get you to admit just that much. Seems like it should be do-able, since you run a blog that is supposed to be dedicated to debunking such hoaxes…you should be able to state in useful terms what one is.

    James K., I graciously accept your admission of defeat — that’s how I read it whenever you retreat into the “All problems can be solved by loading Republicans into a big rocket and firing it into the sun” thing. Fine, now you seek comfort in changing the subject, let’s change it. Voter ID laws? That’s just regulation of something that needs regulating, right? Don’t voter ID laws simply regulate the process of voting, the same way other laws regulate clean air, drinkable water, healthy safe meat, et al?

    Why would anyone be against that? Using the simplistic all-or-nothing logic you’ve been so proud to apply elsewhere, in other subjects, over and over again — your opposition to this sensible regulation would have to mean you’re in favor of vote-fraud, right?

    Like

  14. Well that’s easy to explain, Ed.

    Morgan, like quite a lot of Republicans, like to think that living in a democracy means that only Republicans win so when Republicans don’t win they look for any excuse and reason under the sun to delegitimize whatever non-Republican in question. They are fully willing to make up utter drek in order to do so.

    Republicans love democracy when they win..they hate it and try to stamp it out when they lose. Of course lately Republicans also love stamping out democracy even when they win. *points to Michigan and all the stupid voter id laws*

    They also hate it when the non-Republican compromises and accepts and uses a Republican idea *points to “Obamacare”*

    Like

  15. [...] No attempted political smear like an old attempted political smear (timpanogos.wordpress.com) [...]

    Like

  16. Ed Darrell says:

    Morgan said:

    http://img441.imageshack.us/img441/6392/53059510150671043603821.jpg

    Heh. The pigeons complain that the conservatives don’t know how to play chess, so it’s not even worth bothering with them. Silly pigeons.

    squidoo.com merchandise

    Like

  17. Ed Darrell says:

    Morgan complains (I know, it sounds more whiny than actual complaint, but let’s be polite):

    Ed Darrell & Co. are completely upset with me. There is a picture of our President making the rounds, walking in His dignified way from a plane to a limousine or perhaps vice-versa, carrying a hardcover copy of The Post-American World by Fareed Zakaria. People think poorly of this, and Mr. Darrell has harsh words for those who think so poorly. His critiism is against poor thinking, but as always seems to be the case with him, one cannot help but suspect he is upset that they’ve reached a conclusion he doesn’t like. One also ends up a little confused about whether his excited and scolding words are for those who send the picture around through the e-mail, or for those who quite reasonably and innocently draw their conclusions from it.

    I’m not sure he himself knows.

    What gives you the idea I’m upset with you? Disappointed that a guy who knows how to work a computer is so easily hoodwinked by a crude and nasty hoax — but upset? No.

    What thinking do you claim went into that e-mail? I can’t identify any real thought. Great animus is all that is indicated.

    And, do you really think anyone with more than five neurons firing and a basic set of human ethics could screw up a description of Zakaria’s book like the e-mail does?

    Are you also one of those ill-informed, or thick-headed people who still thinks Obama is a follower of Islam?

    I’m irritated at the gall, I’m irritated at the willingness to spread false tales, for nefarious purposes.

    Morgan, Adams and Washington pointed out that our Constitution works only when people behave in a moral fashion. Why in the world are you NOT alarmed by the hoax?

    Why in the world do you promulgate the hoax, instead of the facts?

    Morgan continued at his site:

    Reasonable persons across the ideological spectrum should be able to agree, that if your argument can only be made to look good by impugning the character of the other guys, to the point where you’re avoiding any discussion of the decisions made & why they’re made, then your argument is probably wrong. According to that, then, they would support whoever is presenting a good plausible plan to get the gas prices back down and get all these capable and able-bodied people working again. I think President Obama should be displaying Himself and His crew as the people who are laboring to implement such a plan.

    It’s not that Obama doesn’t tell you what he hopes to do, it’s not that the information isn’t clear to anyone who reads the newspapers without larcenous intent. For whatever reason, Morgan doesn’t get the message — not reading the papers, failure to comprehend how government works, hysterical blindness, animus toward Obama for [some probably silly reason] — whatever the cause, Morgan just refuses to acknowledge reality.

    Newt Gingrich’s “plan” to get gas prices down — he’s really going to subsidize each gallon of gas up to $2.50 a gallon, from federal funds? — doesn’t work. Since the Obama administration has witnessed a dramatic increase in oil exploration and oil production (the U.S is, once again, an oil exporting nation), we know that “drill baby! drill” doesn’t work.

    A plausible plan to get gas prices down? Muzzle Rick Santorum so he can’t be heard threatening war with Iran.

    Best way to muzzle Santorum? Republicans can support Romney. But in the fall, we need to re-elect Obama, who at least is on record saying war is not always a bright idea, and who appears to understand politics in the Middle East better than any Republican — his stunning win in Libya being a key point that only a blind pig and a blowhard Republican can miss.

    But don’t let the facts get in the way of your rant. Stick to the facts. Our nation’s future depends on wise people acting on good information.

    Don’t support hoaxes.

    Like

  18. Sorry, House, the problem isn’t that they came up with a conclusion that we disagree with.

    It’s that they came up with a stupid dimwitted conclusion that has no basis in reality.

    But please..feel free to continue to defend the stupid and insane thinking being done by some of those on your side of the political spectrum that only serves to make your entire side look like a bunch of stupid raving lunatics.

    After all, speaking for myself, I certainly have no problem in pointing out that quite a large portion of your side is stupidly insane and then using that to make the case that your entire party is stupidly insane who only **** up the country whenever they’re in power.

    Like

  19. [...] Ed & crew are completely upset with me. There is a picture of our President making the rounds, walking in His dignified way from a plane to a limousine or perhaps vice-versa, carrying a hardcover copy of The Post-American World by Fareed Zakaria. People think poorly of this, and Mr. Darrell has harsh words for those who think so poorly. His critiism is against poor thinking, but as always seems to be the case with him, one cannot help but suspect he is upset that they’ve reached a conclusion he doesn’t like. One also ends up a little confused about whether his excited and scolding words are for those who send the picture around through the e-mail, or for those who quite reasonably and innocently draw their conclusions from it. [...]

    Like

  20. Lets see two more recent examples of Republicans/conservatives smearing the President and/or liberals:

    Congresswoman Michele “I never met a bat**** crazy claim I didn’t like” Bachmann:
    That is why the court must kill Obamacare by cutting out its heart and killing its roots. If the individual mandate is found unconstitutional, the entire law is moot. What liberals have done through Obamacare is fan the flames of government tyranny and threaten the God-given liberty of every American. This is why Obamacare must be repealed, root and branch.

    Bradlee Dean, in reference to “Obamacare”: What this administration is attempting to do is exactly what Hitler, Stalin, Mao or any other dictator has done.

    Bradlee Dean, for those who don’t know, is one of Michele Bachmann’s very best friends. He is also virulently homophobic to the point he has praised Islamic countries for killing gays, he also thinks he has some right to go into public schools and force students to listen to extreme right wing Christianity in which he attacks gays, latinos, gays, women, liberals, gays, liberals, non-Christians, gays, gays, gays, liberals, gays, gays, lesbians, gays, gays, gays, gays, gays. Oh and his little ministry is also apparently a tax fraud allegedly. He somehow got invited to open the Minnesota Legislature with a prayer and when it was blatantly sectarian and virulently anti-homosexual every Republican in the legislature somehow managed to claim that they didn’t know what or who he was. That despite the fact that quite a large portion of the Minnesota Republican party has appeared on Mr. Deans radio broadcasts.

    Like

  21. Morgan writes:
    nevermind that it was through their reading that they formed this opinion you don’t like

    So..lets get this straight. You’re defending their reading the title, misinterpreteting what the title actually means and then using that misinterpretation to smear the President…while whining that Ed and me are smearing them?

    So then I presume you have no problem if Mitt Romney, just to use an example, reads a book about the history of Norway and Vidkun Quisling that we accuse him of being a Nazi and fascist just like Vidkun Quisling was right?

    Or can you admit that some claims are simply too stupid to defend?

    Are they entitled to their opinion? Yeah. Just like we’re entitled to point out the stupidity of their opinion. If the people on your side of the political fence want to go off into lalaland just because of the “Scary Black Man in the White House” then we are under no obligation to treat them as anything other then stupidly insane.

    Like

  22. Ed Darrell says:

    nevermind that it was through their reading that they formed this opinion you don’t like

    That’s impossible for reasonable, sane people. They formed their hoax out of sheer hatred — alas, the rest of the U.S. is in their target of hatred as well as our president. They don’t hesitate to throw virtual bombs, regardless the collateral damage.

    Like

  23. Then of course, Morgan, is your party’s smearing of the President when your side calls him a Muslim which he isn’t.

    But lets be hypothetical and say he was…it’s not like it’s actually illegal to be 1: Muslim and 2: the President.

    But of course that doesn’t stop quite a few Republicans from having the same reaction to that concept that Hitler would have had if the leaders of all the other countries on the planet were Jewish.

    Then there is the NRA and other gun nuts repeated claims that Obama is going to take away everyone’s guns which would be hilarious, save the sheer lunacy of it, considering the fact that in the last 3 years of Obama’s Presidency neither the President nor the Democrats have attempted to do a damn thing about guns.

    Then of course is your sides attempts to paint the President as an appeaser and weak on terrorists. Yeah…gee..I wonder what Osama bin Laden thinks about that claim right now….

    But we should ignore the fact that a bunch of people are stupidly smearing the President over a book they clearly haven’t read. That the President secretly believes the United States is about to crash and burn and all that.

    Of course that conveniently ignores the fact that your side has been preaching more or less exactly that ever since the President took office..that the United States is in decline, that it will crash and burn and that “we have to take our country back” which really only brings up the question of “Take our country back from what?” Because it’s not like it went anywhere. It’s not like the country is in a bigger **** hole then what W and the Republicans left it in.

    So really the answer to the question “Take our country back from what?” has a rather obvious answer. That being the “Big Scary Black Man in Our White House.”

    Like

  24. Morgan writes:
    This isn’t an idle nitpick. Much of the arguing here has to do with conjecture about the personality, character, ambition, altruism & lack thereof of what James K. calls “your [my] side.” Effectively, efforts to demonize the opposition, to alienate it, make it seem noble to dismiss it

    Oh you mean like what you and quite a few other Republicans do when you scream “Socialism” “Tyranny” or any other anti-liberal buzzword at the top of your lungs? Or when your side starts making comments about liberals or the President’s supposed lack of intelligence, morality, patriotism? Hell your party can’t even bring itself to tell the birthers and the racists to shut the hell up.

    You yourself have done quite a lot of efforts and attempts to demonize what is the opposition to your pov, to alienate it, to make it seem noble to dismiss it.

    Like

  25. Ed Darrell says:

    But you raised the possibility that they can’t read.

    Sheer insult to the hoax originators, and maybe enough of a sharp barb to get their unwitting co-conspirators and accomplices to think twice before looking like fools, or stooges.

    Not only do you lack the evidence to suggest such a thing, your very definition of the scope of your critique, “anyone who thinks this photo sinister,” makes your observation not only uncalled-for, but, to put it charitably, tenuous.

    And it’s obvious I have no evidence other than my own animus against hoaxsters who work hard to take advantage of old veterans whose heartbeats are tenuous enough without this aggravation.

    Morgan, the inventors of this hoax had evil intent. Shame on them. Any abuse I heap on them is much less than they deserve.

    If an observer of the photo can’t read, he would lack the ability to find it sinister…unless you’re referring to people who find a man with darker skin, wearing nice clothes and sunglasses and carrying a book, sinister.

    Yeah, many of them are racist. It’s so obvious that I don’t even have to mention it — you bring it up. You begin to see my point.

    Alright, if that’s what you meant, I’d be receptive to the idea that such a statistical set would carry a higher proportion of illiterates than the average. But somehow I doubt that this is what you had in mind.

    I just wanted to urinate them off enough that they’d come defend themselves, and smoke themselves out. Someone’s got to call the hoaxsters on their fabrications.

    So far you’re the only one who has taken the bait.

    I hope that doesn’t mean anything.

    If what you’re trying to say is that people who look at the photo, would do well to find out more about the book before leaping to conclusions, or forwarding on e-mails, I would agree. You should have stopped there. But this impulse you have to cram as many insults toward the targets of your wrath, as you possibly can, into a single sentence, led you to say something illogical and silly.

    There is a shop full of evil somewhere out there in America that invents these astonishing falsehoods and passes them on just for mischief. There’s at least one new Obama hit each week. I tire of them. Worse, I tire of explaining to the senior citizens who forward them to me that they are hoaxes. It breaks their hearts that someone would try to sucker them that way. Then they apologize for being idiots — and it’s not really fair, you know?

    This isn’t an idle nitpick. Much of the arguing here has to do with conjecture about the personality, character, ambition, altruism & lack thereof of what James K. calls “your [my] side.” Effectively, efforts to demonize the opposition, to alienate it, make it seem noble to dismiss it. Now if that conjecture is not thought out with logic and rationality, it really doesn’t matter very much what kind of factual basis there is for any of it. Well it looks like now we can dispense with that — taking your words at face value, these people are reading the title off a book in a picture, taking an action you find disagreeable, and because you find it disagreeable you’ve formed an opinion they can’t read, nevermind that it was through their reading that they formed this opinion you don’t like…so you’ve let the mask slip here, the indication is that you just sort of flail around for random insults when people don’t agree with you about something.

    None of which surprises me at this point. I’m a little surprised you’d make a mistake like this though.

    Are you that new at this stuff? What about the claim that Obama didn’t salute at Veterans Day — the 2009 still shot showing the Navy Chief saluting in his whites at Arlington . . .

    Oh, yeah. Veterans Day is November. Navy whites aren’t worn in the fall. Turns out it was Memorial Day, and the chiefs were saluting the President, and the song playing was “Hail to the Chief,” not “Star-Spangled Banner.” President’s don’t pretend they are the flag, you know.

    Then the claims that Obama stiffed the Medal of Honor winner and his family. With the video from the news channels, you could see Obama beeline for the group sitting in the front row. The “fat cat Congressmen” got all of Obama’s attention, the e-mail said, not the family of the Medal of Honor winner, nor the honoree himself.

    Except, Obama had flown every Medal of Honor winner living who could make it to the White House, feted all of them PLUS the honoree’s family, and those men who sacrificed so much were the people Obama “beelined” to, at their invitation. They got the front rows, at the request of the man who got the award that day. Obama had done exactly what our most honored vets asked, and he deserved credit and thanks of a grateful nation, not a fling of monkey poo.

    I can’t heap enough abuse on these hoaxsters. You should be a little ill to realize who it is you’re almost defending.

    Like

  26. But you raised the possibility that they can’t read.

    Not only do you lack the evidence to suggest such a thing, your very definition of the scope of your critique, “anyone who thinks this photo sinister,” makes your observation not only uncalled-for, but, to put it charitably, tenuous. If an observer of the photo can’t read, he would lack the ability to find it sinister…unless you’re referring to people who find a man with darker skin, wearing nice clothes and sunglasses and carrying a book, sinister. Alright, if that’s what you meant, I’d be receptive to the idea that such a statistical set would carry a higher proportion of illiterates than the average. But somehow I doubt that this is what you had in mind.

    If what you’re trying to say is that people who look at the photo, would do well to find out more about the book before leaping to conclusions, or forwarding on e-mails, I would agree. You should have stopped there. But this impulse you have to cram as many insults toward the targets of your wrath, as you possibly can, into a single sentence, led you to say something illogical and silly.

    This isn’t an idle nitpick. Much of the arguing here has to do with conjecture about the personality, character, ambition, altruism & lack thereof of what James K. calls “your [my] side.” Effectively, efforts to demonize the opposition, to alienate it, make it seem noble to dismiss it. Now if that conjecture is not thought out with logic and rationality, it really doesn’t matter very much what kind of factual basis there is for any of it. Well it looks like now we can dispense with that — taking your words at face value, these people are reading the title off a book in a picture, taking an action you find disagreeable, and because you find it disagreeable you’ve formed an opinion they can’t read, nevermind that it was through their reading that they formed this opinion you don’t like…so you’ve let the mask slip here, the indication is that you just sort of flail around for random insults when people don’t agree with you about something.

    None of which surprises me at this point. I’m a little surprised you’d make a mistake like this though.

    Like

  27. Ed Darrell says:

    Yes, Morgan, I suspect they probably can read. So, to claim as they do that this book is the opposite of what it is, and something to fear, makes them evil and scheming, not merely ignorant.

    Fair enough?

    Like

  28. But the people who find this photo sinister, generally, can probably read. Am I right?

    Like

  29. Then they should bother to read the book so they know what the **** they’re talking about.

    Seriously, Morgan, your side is so hell bent on demonizing the President that it is perfectly willing to not only twist innocent stuff but also willing to wholesale make up crap.

    Your side gets in such a hissy fit about “Communists” and groups like al Qaeda that it can’t see that it’s acting exactly like both those, and the Nazi’s, in one very telling way:

    Turning those who they oppose into demons, the spawn of Satan, enemies of the state and enemies of God.

    Your side simply can’t oppose…your side has to outright destroy.

    Which is especially cute considering that it’s your party preaching the fall of the United States, that the United States can’t do this, can’t do that, that the United States lost something that it can never get back.

    Like

  30. Ray Wells says:

    Not the world “after America,” but the world after the domination of America and Pax Americana. ….
    Self explanatory,enough said.

    Like

  31. stuff you’d probably have to read to know about.

    …which they can probably do.

    Like

  32. Ed Darrell says:

    If they can read, then, someday, they should read that great American Mark Twain, who noted that there isn’t much difference between the man who cannot read, and the man who can read but doesn’t.

    Trying to cast aspersions on Zakaria’s prescription for keeping America great is rather like trying to claim Thomas Jefferson was writing a spy manual for the British when he wrote Notes on the State of Virginia. You’d be closer to the truth to claim Francis Bellamy wanted to make the U.S. a communist nation, when he wrote the “Pledge of Allegiance.”

    But that’s all history, stuff you’d probably have to read to know about.

    Like

  33. Anyone who thinks this photo sinister clearly could use a good read of the book — if they can read.

    I’m pretty sure they can.

    Like

Play nice in the Bathtub -- splash no soap in anyone's eyes.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,271 other followers

%d bloggers like this: