September 19, 2008

Rush to judgment: intentionalism vs. progressive will to power

As Obama learns poststructuralist iteration and differance, Rush Limbaugh fires back by invoking intentionalism. It is progressivism and its linguistic assumptions — consensus interpretation and manufacted consent, deployed cynically to create new “meanings” in new “contexts” — vs. a coherent linguistic system in which meaning, for purposes of interpretation (rather than, say, the kind “re-imagining” the Obama campaign engages in here), must necessarily appeal to the creator of the signs: the author/utterer:

I understand the rough and tumble of politics. But Barack Obama — the supposedly postpartisan, postracial candidate of hope and change — has gone where few modern candidates have gone before.

Mr. Obama’s campaign is now trafficking in prejudice of its own making. And in doing so, it is playing with political dynamite. What kind of potential president would let his campaign knowingly extract two incomplete, out-of-context lines from two radio parodies and build a framework of hate around them in order to exploit racial tensions? The segregationists of the 1950s and 1960s were famous for such vile fear-mongering.

[...]

he malignant aspect of this is that Mr. Obama and his advisers know exactly what they are doing. They had to listen to both monologues or read the transcripts. They then had to pick the particular excerpts they used in order to create a commercial of distortions. Their hoped-for result is to inflame racial tensions. In doing this, Mr. Obama and his advisers have demonstrated a pernicious contempt for American society.

We’ve made much racial progress in this country. Any candidate who employs the tactics of the old segregationists is unworthy of the presidency.

For the specifics of Limbaugh’s charge, which involves a cynical and willful decontextualizing of Limbaugh quotes to smear John McCain, do read the whole thing.

For my purposes though, what is important here is that the Obama campaign has, in very broad and obvious strokes, given away the game: by extracting excerpts from Limbaugh’s monologues and applying them to a new context — without reference to the original context — they have pretended that the purported “arguments” being made by Limbaugh speak in opposition to their own claims of postracialism. But in fact, just the opposite is true, as Limbaugh himself recognizes. Because for Limbaugh’s signs to acquire the meaning the Obama camp wants viewers to take away from their presentation, those signs must be entirely severed from their original intent. And it is only at that point – when the interpretative process is left up to the intentions of a receiver who has naught but the signifiers to go on, thanks to the dishonest and intentional removal of all the indexes to original intent that occur inside the signified context of the utterer (eg., metatextual clues signaling irony or parody; think of lines being lifted from Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” and being used by Obama to suggest that Swift “wants to exterminated the poor of Ireland”), that one can argue that Limbaugh’s piece “means” what the Obama camp suggests it means.

Clearly, though, by hiding from interpreters the context that gives clues to original intent — for instance, conventional parodic clues that signal that the author is using satire or irony to address another set of texts — the “authors” of the Obama ad have intended for the out-of-context quotes by Limbaugh to be interpreted a certain way by viewers, even as those viewers believe they are arriving at the interpretation of a Limbaugh text rather than an Obama text.

And that’s because once one understands intentionalism, one realizes that there is nothing else: we either appeal to the intent of the author in order to “interpret,” or we privilege our own intent, which is what happens when we refuse to allow the original signs to act as anything more than signifiers upon which we then graft our own meaning.

In this instance, for the ad to work, the Obama campaign has purposely hidden the original intent of Limbaugh by decontextualizing his remarks. From there, they have cynically built an artifice around those remarks designed to lead those interpreting their ad to decide that Limbaugh’s statements are racist. But what they haven’t done is given you Limbaugh’s signs; instead, they’ve borrowed “Limbaugh’s” signifiers and re-signified them by establishing them in a new context with a new significance — one they intend their viewers to understand.

In short, they have “rewritten” Limbaugh, given that rewrite the name “Limbaugh,” and ensured that those interpreting the spot confuse the rewrite with the original — whose meaning was, as evidenced by its context and intent, quite different than the meaning being ascribed by the Obama campaign.

There is a frightening and fundamental dishonesty here — the suggestion underlying all this being that it is okay to take a person’s signifiers, resignify them to mean their opposite, and then present those re-written signs as belonging to the original utterer.

It is a crass rhetorical trick — but one that, thanks to many premises of the linguistic turn, would seem to “empower” readers and viewers to draw their own conclusions. Strip away the artifice, though, and its clear that the Obama campaign is relying on readers to appeal to “Limbaugh’s” intent — even as they hide the fact that “Limbaugh” is a construct of their own design, and that Limbaugh, who will take the heat for such dishonesty, has nothing whatever to do with the signs the Obama campaign hopes will redound to him.

Welcome to the poststructuralist world. Hope you remembered to bring a slicker. And a helmet.

****
See also, “Is Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Patrick Frey anti-semitic”?

Posted by Jeff G. @ 12:13pm
85 comments | Trackback

Comments (85)

  1. Isn’t this a kind of Goldsteinism? And no, I don’t mean you, Jeff.

  2. El Rushbo will be presenting his original remarks in Spanish on Monday.

  3. So, basically, the Obama campaign, collectively, is a lying sack of shit.

  4. You want to be angry but it’s just sad. Baracky wants people to hate each other just so he can be president. That’s how they do it in Venezuela. I really hate what Baracky is doing to our country here. I’m gonna go get enchiladas for lunch and smile at the girl who takes my order.

  5. Don’t forget to get the “greasey union workers” side order.

  6. Lovely weather we’re having, eh? As I remarked earlier at Ace: who’d have thought that the first black candidate would be inciting racism in his campaign?

    Jeezus …talk about “interesting times” ….

  7. Baracky is morally stunted and not really American the way he is acting. You don’t tell people that everybody hates you except for me. That’s manipulative and it feeds into a sense of insecurity and anxiety. Nobody in America should have a politician make them feel like that.

  8. Greasey union workers are teh suck. It’s like employment like normal people have except with crutches.

  9. It is a crass rhetorical trick

    And it’s an old trick. Well done O!, well done! Give ‘em a little of their own medicine!

  10. I am angry. Not as angry as MichellO, but still…

  11. As I remarked earlier at Ace: who’d have thought that the first black candidate would be inciting racism in his campaign?

    Aside from those who’ve been paying attention to the trends in this direction for the last twenty-plus years, I assume you mean.

    Or, your question at Ace’s place was purely rhetorical and ironic, in which case, well played.

  12. Give ‘em a little of their own medicine!

    Who you talking about, tunnel dick? Shit, don’t bother, I know. Speaks volumes about you that you think lies and distortions are just plumb ducky (see what I did there?) as long as it advances your cause. Hack.

  13. Way to take the high road, thor, you stalwart purveyor of polychromatic whatever the fuck.

  14. Sadly, the racism card is all they have left. That, and ‘punishing’ Big Oil. If only we could hear what plans they have for country in honest and specific terms. Of course, then they would lose in a landslide…. So, not gonna happen.

  15. Rush: You know, I don’t know if that was my exact quote.

    Obama: Exact words.

  16. Make Bill Moyers head explode. Vote qualified for Sarah:
    http://www.pbs.org/now/polls/poll-435.html

  17. I only wish I could claim well-played, McGhee.

    …which means I guess I ain’t been payin’ attention the last 25 years? – Who knew.

  18. And don’t it help a heap that McCain gets right in there with ‘em pummeling Big Oil, LgCbn? Brilliant sonofabitch that McCain.

  19. Yes, Hadlowe. Now let’s see if anyone else picks up on the similarity.

  20. both campaigns are exploiting catalepsis and backfiring.

  21. Related (really):

    The decision by SEC Chairman Chris Cox to ban short selling is a terrible idea. It is an encroachment on free-market principles. In extreme, the absence of short sellers would inflate stock market upturns, probably into bubbles. Short sellers keep the market honest. I know many in the short-selling community and most of them really do their homework. They are skeptical about puff pieces on companies and they are properly cynical about corporate press releases.

    That’s Kudlow, today. Here’s how it’s the same:

    For behavior-modifying purposes, an interposing interpreter — the regulator, the planner — removes contextualizing information from the author’s — here, the “market”‘s — significations, the readable sum of its exchanges, “whose meaning was, as evidenced by its context and intent, quite different” from what the SEC and “puff pieces” and “corporate press releases” (excuse the redundancy) would have us believe.

    Given incomplete and decontextualized — i.e, non- — information, the reader — stripped, in this case, of his role as collaborative author — acts as rationally as possible, constrained to responses that benefit the interpreter(s).

    IT’S ALL TUBES.

  22. I think the tactic also needs the audience to have either no idea who ‘Limbaugh’ is, or to have formed their own shadow-Limbaugh. That is likely to be a lot of people, however.

  23. Comment by tunnel duck on 9/19 @ 12:37 pm #

    Comment by quellcrist falconer on 9/19 @ 12:56 pm #

    Please ignore the talking telephone poles.

    Thanks you.

  24. “Political scientists Brendan Nyhan and Jason Reifler provided two groups of volunteers with the Bush administration’s prewar claims that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.”

    Decontextualizing worldwide official intelligence agencies’ concurrent opinions. Nice.

  25. Record everything you say and do before some words are taken out of context or combined in some manner to convey a message you never sent.

    Give this trend a decade or two. We’ll have two illiterate mutes competing for the presidency. Everyone else will be disqualified by some combination of their own words.

  26. DJIA +359

  27. I would caution thor, especially, from glee at taking quotes out of context. Once separated from even the pretense of contextual irony, he is nothing but bile and sputum.

    Roger Bolt’s Thomas More said it better than I ever could.

    Alice: While you talk, he’s gone!
    More: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law!
    Roper: So now you’d give the Devil benefit of law!
    More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?
    Roper: I’d cut down every law in England to do that!
    More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country’s planted thick with laws from coast to coast — man’s laws, not God’s — and if you cut them down — and you’re just the man to do it — do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake.

  28. consensus interpretation and manufacted consent, deployed cynically to create new “meanings” in new “contexts”

    Related: “Obama Judiciary — Living Constitution.”

  29. Fundamental tenet of O!s campaign: By whatever means necessary

    Truth, integrity, even their hallowed multi-culturalism and phoney diversity…

    Whatever it takes to gain power, well, the rest can go under the bus !

  30. Just playing with some estimates: $12-trillion of national debt divided by 50-million working Americans (above the poverty line) equals $240,000 per?

    This is why people do ignore the O’Brains of the world, and the rest of the pompous pom-poming airheads.

    $1700 per working American for AIG alone.

    Yet the girls in pleated skirts go on cheering.

  31. Comment by tunnel duck on 9/19 @ 1:13 pm #

    Please ignore the talking pile of shit.

  32. “$12-trillion of national debt divided by 50-million working Americans (above the poverty line) equals $240,000 per?”

    And 47-million of them don’t have health insurance.

  33. What kind of potential president would let his campaign knowingly extract two incomplete, out-of-context lines from two radio parodies and build a framework of hate around them in order to exploit racial tensions?

    The kind of presidential candidate who doesn’t get that the Internet Never Forgets?

    I’m trying to figure out who they’re playing to with this ploy and why. When Obama is at a fundraiser or rally, surrounded by his fans, he’s always going on about how “they” will try to portray him as the Scary Black Man.

    This is obviously a play to his base, to help reinforce their smug superiority over those despicable rednecks.

    But which larger audience is he aiming at and why? Those what hates them some black folks won’t vote for Obama under any circumstances and can’t be shamed into doing otherwise. Those who won’t vote for Obama because of his Leftism (or because they dig Sarah more) aren’t going to be swayed by this moronic guilt-tripping either.

    What would Alinsky do (WWAD)? Just this. Because it sets up a reason to get all vindictive and vengeful after O! loses the election.

    Also, regarding the intentionalist angle, how does one interpret the “lipstick on a pig” remark? (Sorry to bring it up, but, you know…) How does one arrive at “intention” in this case. Because you can very easily argue that “lipstick on a pig” is a common enough metaphor, and in the context of Obama’s entire speech, there is no reference to Palin at all.

    But then, there was Palin’s lipstick remark at the convention only a few days before. Obama’s audience certainly picked up on the implications of using the word “lipstick” that day. On what grounds do we establish intent, given that we cannot read Obama’s mind?

  34. #

    Comment by N. O’Brain on 9/19 @ 1:16 pm #

    Comment by tunnel duck on 9/19 @ 1:13 pm #

    Please ignore the talking pile of shit.

    The dumbest cudlip in the herd stutters.

  35. Also, a caller to Dennis Prager yesterday knocked Dennis off his chair with this observation:

    “Republicans won’t vote for Obama because of his politics, so the only people who could possibly not vote for Obama because of his race are the Democrats.”

    I see the flaw in this reasoning. Do you?

  36. …which means I guess I ain’t been payin’ attention the last 25 years?

    In fairness, I noticed these trends in college 20-plus years ago, so I readily concede to perhaps being unusual.

    Then again, I’ve also noticed consistently the surprise people have been expressing repeatedly over the last 20-plus years when they see evidence of these trends spreading to the rest of the country. I often find myself wondering about that more than about the trends themselves.

  37. #27 Hadlowe:

    I’ve posted that quote a few times with respect to intentionalism.
    The thing that those who express joy at an author being taken out of context fail to realize is that they too are in danger. The tactic can be used by anyone (and any campaign featuring Joe Biden ought to be quaking in its slippers). And the McCain campaign has proven to be very agile when it comes to getting out ads.

    No, Sen. Obama ought to be a bit careful, but he won’t, and I think he won’t because he needs to break out of the loop that McCain put him in back at the convention.

  38. “On what grounds do we establish intent, given that we cannot read Obama’s mind?”

    Hold on one second, sweetie, you’re likeable enough, I want you to argue with them and get in their face.

  39. Comment by dicentra on 9/19 @ 1:29 pm #

    I don’t know, di, because, remember, the KKK was the terrorist arm of the Democrat party.

  40. The repulsive thing is that it probably will work with a lot of people.

  41. Dre @39

    Arrrgh matey! I be gettin’ in ur face like this on Talk Like a Pirate Day.

  42. “Dre @39

    Arrrgh matey! I be gettin’ in ur face like this on Talk Like a Pirate Day.”

    The Words of the One™ work in mysterious ways.

  43. We see the same problem with the recurring Confederate Battle Flag controversy. The meaning of the flag is determined, not by those who actually fly it, but by others.

  44. Pingback: American Power

  45. #

    Comment by N. O’Brain on 9/19 @ 1:48 pm #

    Comment by dicentra on 9/19 @ 1:29 pm #

    I don’t know, di, because, remember, the KKK was the terrorist arm of the Democrat party.

    Shorter P’brain: A duuuuueeeey.

  46. 37 – McGhee …my surprise is not so much that a lefty politician would decide to incorporate Leni Riefenstahl and Goebbelisianist rhetorical technique (I’m too jaded for that to surprise me), nor am I surprised to find individuals who are overtly racist (yes overtly, there’s nothing subtle about any of this) anywhere anytime anyrace …but – and indeed, yes I am surprised – that a black man would have decided to inject overt racism into a national campaign.

    Can he be so far insulated from psycho-social and political reality within the insular depths of the black power paradigm of the Jeremiah Wright’s, et al, of the fringe, that he could misjudge the shallow historical depth of the still-recent suturing of that inherent genetic tribal rift that ended racial injustice in this land …and hope to successfully exploit it for political gain? At the risk of re-igniting a thankfully smothered flame?

    Dude!

    That just ain’t smart …and it don’t say much to his leadership abilities, let alone his vision (rather lack, thereof). To wit: this is an idiotic move, I don’t care how frickin’ politically desperate you are. It’s just pretty damn stupid. Damned stupid.

  47. #26 Comment by N. O’Brain on 9/19 @ 1:03 pm #

    TSX +848

  48. Ok. First of all I apologize dre for what I said about the greasey union workers. I am grumpy today and I was overstating things. Except in some cases but I shouldn’t overgeneralize like that. But over the enchiladas me and NG went and had I was thinking about what psycho said at #21. About the decision to ban short selling being a terrible idea cause it decontextualizes stuff. It just seems to me that the SEC people know that, and so what they’re saying with that decision is that they are concerned that in the current environment short selling might not be so innocent really, but could be done to send for real misinformation on purpose. Maybe there are people with lots of money that might want to send a market signal that this or that financial company is tanking, even if they risked losing money if the market ignored them and bid up the price anyway.

    Lots of people seem to really enjoy it when these financial companies get in trouble. NPR has been giddy all week. So in that case it would be exactly not analogous to the deal where Baracky lied about Mr. Limbaugh. The SEC wants to prevent people I think from insinuating stuff. Maybe. It just seems to be sort of Occam’s Razory to look at it like that anyway.

  49. “Comment by happyfeet on 9/19 @ 3:11 pm #

    Ok. First of all I apologize dre for what I said about the greasey union workers.”

    Victimhood at last:)

  50. I am surprised – that a black man would have decided to inject overt racism into a national campaign.

    Simply add a filter to your glasses where the oppressed is sanctified and cannot commit sin, a tenet that marx outlined, and it becomes obvious that Senator Obama, operating under that premise, expects his sin to be ignored because he is incapable of sin.

    Race-baiting isn’t the same as racism. Just as the egg isn’t the same as the chicken. Kinda hard to have one without the other though.

  51. 51 – Kinda hard to have one without the other though.

    Exacalackaly!

  52. @ #47:

    At the risk of re-igniting a thankfully smothered flame?

    The smothering of that flame also smothers his political ambitions. As Hadlowe notes above, Obama is a product of a twisted political school, in which sin is found not in the act, nor the intent — but in opposition to the Anointed.

    Since the Anointed depend on such cudgels as racism to maintain the near-total loyalty on a certain voting bloc, anything that might actually extinguish race as an issue to be used against the other side, must be destroyed. That’s one reason, I think, that Obama had to be brought forth as the nominee now rather than a cycle or two down the line when he might have more of the hated “E” word — if the Anointed waited any longer to nominate a Person of Pigment, the anti-Anointed might beat them to the punch.

    Can’t have that.

  53. I’m so glad you picked up the Rush piece Jeff.

  54. Can he be so far insulated from psycho-social and political reality … that he could misjudge …?

    Yes. He is Brahman. We are Untouchables. You cannot expect the former to know anything about the latter except that the latter is Not Really Human.

  55. It’s pon-poming, Airhead.

  56. Also, davis,br, I think your surprise may be rooted in a false assumption: that Obama is black. In truth, he plays the race card because his racial identity is as much an externality to him as having a Jewish ancestor was to Hillary Clinton in 2000 or to Kerry in 2004.

    For decades black voters have been told to equate blackness with a pro-Democrat voting reflex. Obama has taken it a step further: his identity is found entirely in his ideology. His race is just another line on his political resume.

  57. This is just another instance of left wing demagoguery that we have come to expect from the O! campaign. It’s all part of a pattern, and no doubt a plan. Sort of like the 5 year plans of the old Politburo.

  58. Understanding the racial issues that consume Obama, his wife, his pastor and Jarrett, his most trusted advisor, make it easier to understand the behaviors and attitudes of Obama’s campaign

    and his barely concealed contempt for middleclassness, flipping the bird at Hillary, and the lies that are the basis of every single one of his speeches

    Obama’s friends and agenda have one thing in common

    a resentment of the majority culture in America………and a desire to payback

  59. http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0208/8642_Page2.html

    “…….To research her thesis, the future Mrs. Obama sent an 18-question survey to a sampling of 400 black Princeton graduates, requesting the respondents define the amount of time and “comfort” level spent interacting with blacks and whites before they attended the school, as well as during and after their University years. Other questions dealt with their individual religious beliefs, living arrangements, careers, role models, economic status, and thoughts about lower class blacks. In addition, those surveyed were asked to choose whether they were more in line with a “separationist and/or pluralist” viewpoint or an “integrationist and/or assimilationist” ideology.

    Just under 90 alums responded to the questionnaires (for a response rate of approximately 22 percent) and the conclusions were not what she expected. “I hoped that these findings would help me conclude that despite the high degree of identification with whites as a result of the educational and occupational path that black Princeton alumni follow, the alumni would still maintain a certain level of identification with the black community. However, these findings do not support this possibility.”

    she found that Black grduates identified as AMERICAN majority culture

    and not with the BLACK community

    to Michelle……that was a outrageous, since she always felt like an outsider. Useless to remind her how many nerdy kids feel left out of the action…to her, there was only one reason

    her color

    and that is too too convenient, because since she cannot change her color..her unpopularity (or whatever) cannot be her fault

    so integration into main stream America is not what the Obama’s are all about

    that is what the rev Wright, Farrakhan and Father Pflager have in common

  60. Jeff G., I’ve ordered Against Theory, and I’ve read Interpretation and Overinterpretation. I could smell Rorty’s condescension even after I closed the book. I keep wondering if I’m still smelling that lingering cheesy odor, or if it really is Obama.

    Thanks for arming me with semiotics and wrestling. Much appreciated.

  61. In times of crisis I always listen to Rush Limbaugh.

  62. probably smartest thing you’ve ever spewed oh gawd of thundar.

  63. Really? I listen to Mother Mary, by way of the Beatles, who — bless her — usually just counsels me to drink.

    To each his own, though.

  64. No, Sen. Obama ought to be a bit careful, but he won’t, and I think he won’t because he needs to break out of the loop that McCain put him in back at the convention.

    I think Obama won’t because he is counting on cover from the compliant MSM. Who will immediately debunk anything spurious tossed at Obama while simultaneously reinforcing whatever false memes he wishes to promulgate.

  65. 63 – “…smartest thing you’ve ever ….

    Like: mega-dittoes!

  66. I think the Obama camp is in for a nasty shock come Monday. Rush Limbaugh’s audience on any given day dwarfs the numbers for all the cable networks combined. I know that Univision is solidly pro-Dem, but I have to wonder if Hispanic radio stations may pick up the ball and run with it.

    The Obama advert was not a political act. It was incitement, pure and simple.

  67. oh. Mostly I dig out that old Kate Bush cd. I like the part where she says “You’re like my yo-yo that glowed in the dark. What made it special made it dangerous. So I bury it and forget.” I don’t know why but that’s just so true I think.

  68. What the fuck, over?

  69. I usually look at MacArthur’s “Duty, Honor, country” speech, a picture of my wife and kids or my King James Bible.

  70. Obama’s audience certainly picked up on the implications of using the word “lipstick” that day. On what grounds do we establish intent, given that we cannot read Obama’s mind?

    I established intent by the little laugh and shoulder shrug Obama gave when his audience laughed during the pause he allowed after saying “Lipstick on a pig.”

    When I first heard of the incident, I assumed it was overblown. Then I watched and listened to the video. Obama was calling Palin a pig.

  71. Exactly right, SL. I hadn’t seen dicentra’s question previously, but you answered it quite correctly: we can never read anyone’s mind, and most people when they communicate aren’t trying to hide their intent. In Obama’s case, he was using the language of irony (in L. Hutcheon’s formulation), and what tips us off are metatextual, intertextual, and extratextual clues.

    When someone is trying to hide his intent, it can be difficult to suss; and to this day I’m not certain Obama’s use was meant misogynistically — but was rather intended to play off of the Governor’s comment while remaining, for the most part, a common metaphor. It was ironic, but without the implications of the irony thought all the way through: Obama intended for a connection to be made, I believe, but he didn’t anticipate the way the remark would be interpreted, because he’s not all that clever. He used it as a laugh line without considering what people would either be laughing at (or, in other cases, outraged by).

  72. thor reminds me more of Elinor Rigby than Mother Mary, Jeff.

  73. While not being able to read Obama’s mind at the moment of the Lipstick line, Jeff, I have learned that if a person has shown a pattern of using “cute” analogies to be dismissive or destructive of another, then their bad intentions can be approximated very closely when they do it yet again. That they have a “Freudian” slip and honestly deny “conscious” bad intent makes the damage no less real, for the speaker and the object of comment. thor even occasionally speaks the truth and is unaware of having done so, e.g. comment #9. Irony. It’s what’s for breakfast. And bacon.

  74. I’m with twolane — and I’m actually strongly inclined to think O!’s antics are misogynistic, precisely because of the pattern.

  75. I don’t think Senator Obama has any special contempt or animosity toward women. I just think he’s so arrogant, self-centered, egotistical and self assured that he passes from just really confident into disturbing self-worship. Thus, everyone is either something to use or something beneath his notice.

  76. It’s quite possible Obama is misogynistic. The question was, what was his intent. I would say that his intent was to take a small shot at Palin, but it was not to exhibit whatever misogyny he might harbor. I don’t think he much thought it through. I think he intended to get a laugh by deploying irony; but as I say, I’m not sure he was careful or clever enough to think it all the way through.

  77. McCain is inside Obama’s OODA loop. The way things normally develop in such a situation is increasingly desperate maneuvering, deployment of chaff and flairs – anything to put off the inevitable. Normal ending: aircraft going down in flames, with pilot optionally in parachute.

    Obama’s just announcing that he’s losing. Unfortunately, he’s leaving a sulphurous stench in his wake.

    Pity, that.

  78. That’s my way of saying don’t attribute to malice what might be simple desperation – or stupidity.

  79. Jeff, if Obama’s Chicago street cred has any value, them bitches ‘n ho’s best know they place, and don’ you be talkin’ ’bout my mama. That “white bitch” (pit-bull/pig) giving Obama so much trouble, will be, as Michelle Malkin wrote, infantilized, sexualized, demonized, and dehumanized. So, as I see it, misogyny is part of Obama’s cultural “blackiness”, along with predation of females, or he is an “Oreo” trying to gain advantage by claiming race-card rights. Either way, I’d give you 10-to-1 odds on his comment being dismissive of Sarah Palin based on his personal experience with “white” women who could neither validate his racial identity nor resolve his racial confusion. “White” women, “typical” like grandma, and “atypical” like mama at one end of the spectrum and Sarah Palin at the other, have been controlling Obama’s outcomes all of his life. He’s probably worth an annuity to a psyco-therapist.

  80. psychotherapist.

    Sorry, rented fingers.

  81. Obama didn’t make a Freudian slip or misspeak, watch the video, he almost blows the timing leading to the line; he was so eager you can see his mental wheels turning. IMO-the lipstick/pig remark was not about Palin per se, of course any damage to her appeal would be a net gain, but was a calculated move to grab the news cycle as their convention bounce evaporated and metaphorically they couldn’t get arrested in the news cycle.

    The problem is, in spite of claiming to be Chicago street fighters (grin*chuckle*guffaw), they are not very skilled at throwing elbows and telegraphed their next logical move; playing the race card. Which they’ve played too early. There is no way Obama can sustain a charge of racism for six weeks without turning off the middle-class and blue collar voters he needs. He’s used elitism, patriotism, sexism, ageism and racism, how many “isms” do they have left to play?

  82. Thanks for all the fancy-talk, Jeffy G. You must be some kind of real important-like intellectual.

    Me, I just thought what happened was the Obama folks lied about Rush said.

    But, ya know, guess I just ain’t…fancy.

  83. #76
    Comment by Christopher Taylor on 9/20 @ 11:01 am #

    “I don’t think Senator Obama has any special contempt or animosity toward women.”

    I kinda think mebbe he’s afraid of that woman he married. That girl got a lot of anger in her.

  84. The question was, what was his intent. I would say that his intent was to take a small shot at Palin, but it was not to exhibit whatever misogyny he might harbor.

    Can’t disagree with that. The people I’ve known who harbored misogynistic (or similar) opinions have generally been reluctant to reveal them on purpose.

    Reveal them they do, nevertheless.

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