03 September 2008

McCain's puppets, and Palin's real base

There is a certain horrific fascination in watching so many Obama supporters dancing to John McCain's piping as he deftly pulls their strings -- not that much active manipulation is needed.

It's almost jarring to recall that it was only last Friday that Sarah Palin was named as the Republican VP candidate, and that before that, hardly anyone had heard of her. I don't think I've ever seen a political candidate pelted with so much invective and filth in such a short span of time.

Bimbo. Airhead. Dumb hick. Bad parent. Barbie doll. If a tenth of the insults were to stick, she'd be toast.

Then there's the filth: the smutty, sniggering "snark" like this and this and the dank miasma of sweaty public fantasizing about Palin's daughter and who was pregnant when. Not even Barack Obama's own call for decency on that last subject has gotten the people who claim to support him to shut up about it.

There are plenty of legitimate objections to Palin -- her opposition to the right to abortion, her scientifically-illiterate denialism on evolution and global warming, the accusations of abuse of power for personal reasons, even her rather limited political experience (though I think that last is a much weaker issue than it seems at first glance). Those of us who would otherwise be focusing on such issues feel either drowned out by all the name-calling or cowed into silence by sheer embarrassment at the behavior of those we'd be associating ourselves with.

The thing is, this thoroughly-predictable (to anyone who watched the behavior of Obama's followers during the primaries, anyway) flood of disdain is setting Palin up to succeed. If she performs well at the Republican convention and in the VP debates with Biden (and she's said to be a pretty sharp debater), then the impression that she makes will be all the greater because of what are, to put it politely, drastically-lowered expectations.

I think McCain knew that all this would happen. He threw the red moose-meat out there to the Obama cultists as bait, and they flung themselves right into his trap.

Then there's the issue of broadening McCain's appeal to a wavering constituency of former Clinton supporters, which was surely a major reason for choosing her.

One of the most frequently-made observations over the last few days is that McCain must really be losing his mind if he thinks that Clinton's disgruntled female supporters will rally to him if he just picks a woman, any woman, as a running mate. Put that way, it does seem like a silly gambit; although, as I've already pointed out here, the vomitous outpouring of misogynistic insults aimed at her by Obama zealots is forcefully reminding female Clinton voters of what turned them off of the Obama cult so much. That, too, was completely predictable, and doubtless predicted by McCain.

The more significant point, though, is the one I alluded to here. Yes, the choice of Palin was partly meant to lure a disgruntled Clinton-supporting Democratic constituency out from under Obama's bus and into McCain's camp -- but that constituency isn't women, or at least it isn't primarily women. It's the rural and working-class voters, the ones who gave Clinton huge primary victories in Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and other such swing states which will also decide the general election. The people whom the "progressive" insult machine back then was denouncing as hicks, rubes, racists, "low-information whites", bitter gun-clingers, and so forth. Them.

Palin is from that culture and it's still her culture. It's a culture that urban "progressives" know little about, but enjoy sneering at when it occasionally crosses their attention. And sneer they will. And thus they will remind millions of voters in the swing states -- the states which, I repeat, will decide this election -- of exactly why they never liked people like Obama or his most visible supporters.

The worst part is that when Obama loses in November, his cult will almost certainly react with a paroxysm of denouncing the voters as idiots, brainwashed, easily-led, and so forth, just as too many Democrats did after the 2004 debacle (I'm already seeing signs of people revving themselves up to do this). Even at the bottom of the hole, they will still find a way to keep digging. In seeking the reason for the defeat, it will never occur to them to look in the one place they most need to look -- the mirror.


Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

Mr.Infidel..of coarse I am an Obama supporter(not monitarily since I'm too poor,but at least in vote).But I think again you hit the nail on the head on more then one nail as well.First of all...the mudslinging that I read is totally damaging to Obama..from many of his supporters.I am new to the internet for instance,I would expect this kind of ranting from an underground/alternative publication,which I have read for years..but not in the mainstream..the internet is mainstream America.This is not only destructive,but silly.And yes,folks like Obama are looked at as kind of yuppie by alot of rural American's,and blue collar types,even blacks who strictly vote for him because he is black they are so anxious to get a person of color in.I know,I work and live in mostly minority urban communities.Also your right on...these criticisms ignore the actual things that should be of concern and objected.I think that Obama himself would feel insulted by many of his supporters and their actions.And this is so dangerous to the democrats.Perhaps these folks just see this as fun and humor...but they wont a few years down the road when they find their liberties and Supreme Court in jeopardy.I'll just shut up now.

04 September, 2008 00:12  
Blogger Rita said...

Wow! I'm impressed. Infidel, will you be my campaign manager? I'm also a middle-aged white woman, with skeletons in my closet. Actually, at the moment they aren't in the closet, they are dancing in the street. *sigh*

04 September, 2008 07:11  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Ranch Chimp -- Thanks.

Handmaiden -- It has possibilities. Palin got started in politics running for city council in a town about the size of yours. As for the skeletons, register them to vote! For too long the voices of Osteo-Americans have been kep silent in the political process!

04 September, 2008 08:28  

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