Where Obama should start
By Michael M. Bates
web posted May 19, 2008
Barack Obama presents himself as the voice of hope and change. A transformational figure, he'll set aside the old politics and run a dignified, elevated campaign, one eschewing gratuitous smears. If Obama is sincere, he should begin by cleaning up his party's official Web presence.
A quick tour of the Democratic Party site (www.democrats.org) should persuade him. The blog there is rife with smears, insults and obscenities. Perhaps the party loyalists posting there have lost their bearings.
Here are a few examples of what's been posted in just the past few days. Expletives have been removed for obvious reasons. Grammar and misspellings haven't been corrected.
- "Senile McLame, can't remember stuff now, what would he be like in 4 years if elected? End up like a senile Reagun, with corrupt cronies and crooks set free in the white house to pillage and hide the crimes?"
- "Morning Bill, I don't understand why McNuts what to a series of town hall debates with Obama."
- "McCain appears to be mentally impaired. McCain needs to get a brain scan and retire for treatment."
- "We could have told Gorbachev that bush is an expletive and he truly is a fascist pig who is trying to dominate the world. mclame will be worse. Why do we allow these retards to run our government. They should be in prison in the Hague. bush is going to the Middle East next week goosestepping the whole way and accusing more nations of being terrorist. We are the expletive terrorists."
- "McCain has not yet had to debate Obama on the same platform, That will be like a giant taking on an unarmed, mentally defective pygmy!"
- "Are you talking about chimpenfuhrer's dimwitted dipstick daughters by any chance. I wonder how much this faux wedding is costing the American working man?"
- "Republicans HAVE MOthers? I thought they were spawned underneath very wet rocks !"
- "And as far as your mentally defective nominee, Senator McNuts, Obama is going to wipe the deck with him. It doesn't matter how much you try to swift boat him."
- "We should bury bush and cheney in pig expletive at their local landfill. That includes all members of their families."
- "Has she (Cindy McCain) been involved in some way in a lot of blind trusts/partnerships set up by her father that could land her in political if not legal hot water if they ever see the light of day? As long as she paid her taxes (unlike Capone), the IRS has left her alone? Let's face it, McCain may very well be married to the mob."
- "I am continually amazed at the size of the expletive on expletive like this, to continually insinuate that THEY and expletive like them are this country. If we say Bush is an idiot, then we are insulting America....what major expletive expletive that takes. (Btw, Bush is NOT an idiot, he's a piece of expletive evil expletive conservative whose expletive success at enacting conservative policies has just about destroyed this country."
Some of the Democratic blog contributors are less than thrilled with Mrs. Clinton these days. Here's an interesting theory one of them propounds:
"I am glad you said it, that she (Hillary Clinton) is getting closer and closer to McCain and could be his VP. This has crossed my mind before, for why is she attracting Russ(sic) Limbaugh voters, Ann Coulter voices and going on FoxNews. She could get the nod if Lieberman does not get it first. Hillary with McCain, they can use her Goodwill Bush Ambassadors to undermine McCain constitution with Clinton Kitchen Sink directives."
Or in other words, "Kenneth, what is the frequency?"
Senator Obama may find cleaning up his party's Web site a daunting task. Incivility and coarseness permeate the blog, and this isn't new. In January, 2007, a partisan shared a genuinely profound emotion:
"BUSH makes me literally ill. the bile is rising up in my stomach as we speak....I wish I could race into bush's office and vomit all over his face. I wish I could stand over him and puke and gag and wretch until nothing but the last nasty drop of yellowish green bile runs down his ugly hate filled face, off his chin and down over his suit."
Trash talk is customary at liberal sites such as the Democratic Underground and Daily Kos. In all fairness, some conservative sites are equally loutish.
But we're talking here not about a fringe group, but one of the two major political parties. Even Democrats don't deserve the image depicted at their official Web site.
Let's see if nominee Obama is as dedicated to raising political discourse to a higher plane as he claims.
This Michael Bates column appeared in the May 15, 2008 Reporter Newspapers.
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