Tuesday, June 3

:: A few thoughts on tonight

Why do I strongly doubt everyone would feel so "offended" about a candidate not conceding and supposedly not showing signs of grace tonight if that candidate weren't female? (Isn't it amazing that even when you're running for the highest office in the land, it's all about whether you're nice enough? Women are just expected to be nice in a way that men aren't, and it is so embedded in our culture that people can't even see beyond it.) The woman still won a freakin' primary today - today, when it's all supposed to be over, and people are still voting for her. And after she won a primary by over 30 points on Saturday. I just don't remember Mike Huckabee getting the same amount of scorn from the MSM even when it was over on the Republican side (and not nearly as close), but he was still in the race and still winning primaries. He could take his sweet time and make sure his supporters felt respected.

The MSM, the Obama campaign, and the DNC better wake up fast to the amount of bitterness there is out there among Clinton's voters, and it's not just some kooky old white women and ignorant racist rednecks, as the media keeps trying to portray. And the more they act like they did tonight, they more I just want to stay home in November. If this party and this campaign thinks they can win without the women and other voters who supported Clinton, we can certainly try to test that premise, but I don't think it's going to work so well. And while I'm glad Obama finally acknowledged his grandmother tonight and tried to acknowledge Clinton's contributions to the race, it's going to take a little bit more than that.

I am also sure that I am not the only woman who was stunned at how much sadness I felt tonight realizing that we aren't going to see a woman president any time soon, how that dream is just gone for now. It took 24 years after Geraldine Ferraro to get to this point. How long is it going to take to get back here? It's 2008, I'm going to be 31 years old tomorrow (and how sad was I to hear that I share a birthday with Dorothy Rodham, who will also face tomorrow filled with a sense of what could have been, though so much more so), and it feels like time, and I hate that that is gone. As if the bitterness of this race isn't enough, I think that's a reality as well. I knew what was going to happen tonight, and yet watching it slip away was unbelievably painful. Yes, it's a historic night, but can we also acknowledge the loss that so many of us also feel?

5 comments:

Ciccina said...

Screw them, honey.

Sorry for committing heresy - and while I would never affirmatively vote for McCain - four years of McCain will most likely not be the end of the world.

Shit, whatever happens under McCain, we'll deal with it. Supreme Court justices - that's why we have a Democratic Congress.

As for Iraq, Obama doesn't have the muscle to get us out any more than Bill Clinton had the muscle to move gays in the military during his first term. The generals would laugh in Obama's face.

I'd rather take my chances under McCain and try again in four years with a candidate who has some ethics, than reinforce what we've all seen happening with the Democratic party. Shit, maybe they'll even learn a lesson from this.

zippy said...

I have always said that Democracts had two great options for the nomination - I just don't harbor the antipathy for the Obama campaign that Cicina does. But this morning when I read that Hillary was going to throw her support behind Obama, I find myself sad and relieved. Sad that Hillary's campaign really appears to be over - somehow it still meant something to me that Hillary wasn't going to stop until the convention, even as I knew that it wasn't going to change the outcome of the campaign.

But I'm also relieved. I just haven't been able to get into this campaign on either side - I truly believe that Hillary would make a better president, but I'm sorry ladies, her campaigning is just, well, there were some tragic missteps that kept me from getting as excited as I wanted to. Despite that, I just couldn't throw my vote to Obama as long as a better president was in the race.

Ciccina, I hope you'll look at the whole ticket and not just the bottom bit (and frankly, living where you do, what else ya got?? City council??). I hope that the Obama campaign will show a serious and real alternative to McCain and the current state of ignorance and deception created by the Bush Administration.

Hmph.

R said...

I'm not sure exactly how I ended on this blog, perhaps it was to get away from the Obamania that simply swamps by law school. And for the record, I'm a male Democrat (and gasp, HRC supporter) that actually pores through the issues individually and against themselves because I know that promises like universal broadband will never happen. That being said, I'd just like to make some observations about Hillary 08 because it is the end, if for no other reason to get them out of head.

The most endearing image of the campaign is that of Bill and Hillary, fighting against the entire Democrat machine. Sure, there were the Terry McAuliffes and the Lanny Davises, but they were clearly surrogates of the campaign. On the other side were not only the official surrogates (e.g. Samantha Power, who basically confirmed what you said about Iraq) but also the so called "analysts" like Donna Brazile, Roland Martin, and Andrea Mitchell. Obviously even worse were the talking heads, especially the members of the "Cool Boys Club" (e.g. Olbermann, Matthews, Abrams, Shuster, etc.). There was never an question of who the party and the media machines supported. While others were pulled in by the rock-star politics, I went in the opposite direction; being the ultimate bleeding heart liberal, I found myself rooting for the underdog. As Bill started entering the fray, I become more of a fan. Ironically, while the media swooned over Obama's chivalry with his wife, it spared no shots at Bill. Here's the ex-president, slopping around podunk towns championing his wife; hell, I times one could see him wanting to just strangle the press over their biases. What was the Vanity Fair article supposed to be the "June surprise," in case Hillary managed to reach the magic number?

But ultimately what saddens me is the fracturing of the "Big Tent" Party. Maybe it's the hubris of Gore and "An Inconvenient Truth" or Dean and the success of his Blue Dog campaign. Maybe it's because the Kennedy wing never forgave Bill for compromising withe the GOP over welfare reform and gays and the military. Maybe it's because I feel like that I'm the only one who sees that the DNC, burned by Kerry and his public and Senate record, plagiarized the GOP playbook of 2000 and played identity politics with an empty suit, but I can't help but think that the disbanding of Bill's coalition is not a good thing. So, it seems that the DNC is doubling down on the bi-coastal liberal, neo-environmentalist, and African-American bets. And of course, whatever women, Latinos, and blue collars workers decide to come for the ride. I guess November 2008 will determine if this bet pays off.

To be honest with you, I'm glad Hillary Clinton lost the nomination. Only three things can come from November. One, Obama loses the election in an non-losable; if this happens, then Dean's strategy is disgraced; hopefully, the empty suit approach goes with it.

Two, if Obama wins election, given the economic reality of the situation, he simply can not placate his base. This is the point people miss about HRC and BO; while the differences of their policies are minuscule, the policies of their bases are huge. Hillary's only act of voter betrayal is failing universal health care (again); all else we'll begrudgingly accept. On the other hand, Obama has promised his supporters (especially the young fickle ones) so much. Withdrawal in 6 months? No way. Environmentalists will be betrayed, too. We can't pass the costs in our exports (since we don't have any), curbing greenhouse emissions will only do two things: move the remaining manufacturing jobs overseas, or increase domestic costs. Unfortunately, if Obama is Hoover2, two of his qualities will be blamed, only one (inexperience) publicly.

Finally, McCain wins the election. If this happens, I actually believe that he will be like the second Bush41, a pragmatic moderate who knew placed the needs of his country before his base (e.g. "No New Taxes").

Ciccina said...

R - isn't it funny (for lack of a better word) how Bush the son makes Bush the father look so moderate / centrist? The GOP has lurched ludicrously far to the right - so much further right than the Conservative parties in Europe. The only equivalents to the GOP in Europe are the far right parties - the BNP, Le Pen, etc.

Part of me always new that our cowardly, strident mass culture would never allow Clinton to win. The MSM is dominated by Chris Matthews types, just slightly quieter. But one of the most disturbing aspects of this campaign season has been seeing just how knee-jerk, just how stupid, just how backwards our supposedly smarter, fairer media darlings can be. I'm talking Jon Stewart mocking Hillary's Hallmark Channel event because it was "uncool" - all those ladies! Etc. I really look at the Dems differently now.

And the press calling Bill Clinton angry- what a hoot! After they broadcast and print one fulminating anti-Hillary comment after another. The MSM were the ones who sounded angry all the time; angry that the Clintons had the temerity to keep existing.

I think you are totally right about the scenarios.

1. Obama loses because he can't carry PA and either FL or OH. The party is disgraced. Somebody learns an important lesson about telling half of your base that their votes don't matter.

2. Obama wins but can't deliver. The press does him like they did Bill Clinton (accusing him of naivete, flip flops, going back on promises, etc).

As much as I hate McCain, I've come to believe that the Dems aren't all that different, deep down in side. Giant egos rules the day; policies and movement building come second. And everybody loves a celebrity.

Ciccina said...

Zippy - I used to be very positive about Obama too. But I just can't support someone who is willing to stand by (to say the least) while a top Democratic woman is attacked over and over again by misogynistic losers, most of whom were his supporters.

The way Hillary has been treated has been a giant learning experience for young girls. You can't get anywhere if you wear the wrong clothes, are too opinionated, if men don't like your laugh, if you don't show humility while your male counterpoints show "strength." Obama is willing to set back the role of women in politics to 1960s era stereotypes when being "likable" and pleasing men were a woman's highest calling.

This is not a man who cares about our issues. This is a man who couldn't bring himself to make one speech, or devote even part of a speech, or put out a statement, about misogyny or sexism - not only with regard to Senator Clinton, but about the issue in general.

I just think there is a larger issue here about the way women are treated in our society, about the norms that are set for women and the limits on what women are "allowed," ultimately, to attain.

Let's say this race was John Edwards v. Obama, and Edwards won the nomination, and 10 minutes later a bunch of info becomes public that he has associated with a lot of racist people who said a lot of racist things about Obama, either because they really felt that way or because they wanted him to lose. Then you realized that while Edwards talked about classism a lot, and occasionally mentioned sexism, he never once mentioned racism. And imagine you are African American.

Would you support this hypothetical Edwards? Would you accept that issues that spoke to your very humanity would have to take the back seat for the good of the whole? And having sat through a season where the very Democratic leaders who you thought were on your side sat back and mocked and sneered and used a double standard based in racism to bring him down?

And if you, as a African-American voter, said I just can't take part in this election, I just can't sanction this kind of behavior, would you think it was fair that people told you to get over it, just suck it up, you'll get another chance for one of 'your kind' to be elected (wink wink nudge nudge), stop being so bitter? I'm not posing this question rhetorically; I'm literally interested in what you think (of course).