Friday, February 8

:: Kate Michelman Jumps the Shark

Kate has a new pro-Obama statement, and its kinda freaky, in a pod-person sort of way...

Kate's new pro-Obama statement is, well, kind of weird.... see for yourself. Its called "Believing Again" (note: emphasis added and formatting condensed).
The question I have been asking myself and others during my entire life in public policy and throughout this 2008 presidential Campaign -- the question which tens of millions of women and men have also been asking -- is how do we best bring America together in shared purpose, prosperity and, especially, equality.


[Like John Edwards] Barack Obama is also calling our nation to the greatness that we all want but that we're uncertain we can still achieve. Others talk about greatness and they even say all the right words, but they do not bring those words to life. Their words do not grab us by the arms and pull us along together.


And when I endorsed John Edwards I also knew that Barack Obama shared every one of these concerns, and over the course of Barack's own campaign, the nation has come to believe in him just like I always have as well.

Senator Obama is not just prepared to lead ­ as our beloved Teddy and Caroline Kennedy have said, he is prepared to lead in a way different than we have seen for decades. Not out in front with us behind him, but rather with us beside him. And that difference is all the difference. That difference separates just any president from a great president; and right now, we need a great president.

Barack Obama will be that great president. He will bring us all together. And together, we will change our country. During these past many years, we have lost the sense of what we could do together, who we could be, what was possible. That's changing. And Barack Obama is the one changing that. With him, greatness is again within reach.
First of all, if she always believed in Barack, she should have endorsed him and not Edwards. I guess she just didn't believe in him enough.

Second, what is with the cult-language? I realize that "he will bring us all together" is a main campaign message, but coming from a woman who was at the nexus of one of our most intense (and sometimes violent) cultural conflicts, this sounds bizarre. I guess it depends on what she means by "us." If she's thinking "us" doesn't include the folks over at National Right to Life, the National Council of Catholic Bishops and the neanderthal base of the Republican party, okay maybe. Because I'm certain they're not going to jump into bed with Kate no matter what Barack tells them.

"With him, greatness is in reach" - she sounds like a televangelist or mega-church preacher. Does she really expect people to just swallow that without any specifications about what this "greatness" might entail? Annexing Poland and Czechoslovakia, perhaps?

Third, what is with that "our beloved Teddy and Caroline" crap? She's a hair's breadth (or hare's breath, if you like) from calling Barack our Dear Leader. When was the last time you heard any American call any living politician, in all seriousness, "our beloved"? Freaky.

Last, the most interesting part of her whole statement is this: Barack will lead "Not out in front with us behind him, but rather with us beside him." This, my dears, is the Big Clue. Kate sees herself as part of Barack's circle, in a favored position "beside him"; she wouldn't have such a place next to Hillary. Hillary doesn't need Kate to shore up her feminist credentials - she has her own achievements. But Barack - he needs Kate beside him. He makes her feel valuable. She is a bigger fish in that pond.

In other words, Kate has invalidated everything she preached while she ran NARAL. For years and years she told us that a solid record of standing up for women's rights was of paramount importance in deciding which candidate to support. Now, just because Barack made her feel good about herself, she has thrown away the ideals she championed throughout her career.

Kate is capping off her career by telling us that the principles she fought for aren't so important after all. What a sad way to slide into irrelevance.


ladybec said...

WSJ had an article making exactly this point at the end today, too: All these women are backing Obama in their own personal self-interest - to be in his inner circle - not for the greater good of women, which would be the case under a President Hillary Clinton. It's really quite sad and disappointing. I want the candidate who is going to make the lives of _women_ better, not the lives of individual women leaders, i.e. Kate Michelman. But how much of a leader can you be if you can't see past your own self-interest anyway? Blech. At least most women voters seem to be able to tell the difference...

RS said...


I wrote a response to your blog on my blog :-)


Kirsten said...

You know, some people need staff to save them from themselves...