Basketball Culture Wars

The longtime or especially astute readers all know I'm a University of North Carolina alum and an ardent Tar Heel basketball fan, and I can't help but notice how closely this election parallels the UNC/Dook rivalry in basketball, especially after today's announcement of Sarah Palin as John McCain's running mate. Maybe this is a stretch, but follow me.

Smith versus Krzyzewski

Dean Smith is a liberal who participated in the civil rights movement, opposes the death penalty and the war in Iraq, and once allowed a player to skip practice to protest against the UNC cafeteria workers' low wages. He's also talked and written candidly about how his Christain faith has shaped his worldview.

Coach K is a Republican who likes to tell offensive jokes and has succeeded in part because of dirty tricks and media manipulation. He coaches his players to play dirty (slapping wrists, taking bullshit charges, etc.) and dares the refs to call the foul, which seems pretty similar to me to the Karl Rove tactics of distorting opponents' positions and spreading rumors and daring the media to call him out on it. These strategies work by intimidating referees through constant yelling and cursing and causing journalists to fear that they might confirm the "liberal media" image that the right-wing has created for them.

Kansas versus Alaska

Obama's grandparents are from Kansas, as are Dean Smith and longtime UNC coach Bill Guthridge. Of course, Roy Williams also coached at Kansas for many years, as did former UNC player Larry Brown. Kansas Governor Kathleen Sibelius is a strong Obama supporter.

Duke has had two star players from Alaska: Trajan "Alaskan Assassin" Langdon and Carlos Boozer. McCain's recently announced running mate, Sarah Palin, is the governor of Alaska and ran the point for Wasilla High, leading them to the "small school" state championship back in '82.

Jordan versus Wojo

No UNC player, with the possible exceptions of Lennie Rosenbluth and Phil Ford, is more associated with UNC basketball than Michael Jordan. He famously hit the game-winning jumper against Georgetown in the 1982 NCAA title game, the same year as Palin's high school championship (meaning that Jordan is older than she is!). Jordan is known for his incredible work ethic, but on the court, his gracefulness often makes it all look effortless. He is also seen by some as a transcendent post-racial figure, someone whose popularity has helped to pave the way for the first black president.

Christian Laettner is probably the iconic Duke basketball player, but no one symbolizes Duke more to me than Steve "Wojo" Wojciechowski, the scrappy Polish-American point guard who now sits next to Coach K on the Duke bench. Although I've never seen Sarah Palin play basketball (and, really, probably only a hundred or less people have), I like to imagine that she is a similar player to Wojo, succeeding through gritty hard work and not above a cheap shot or two, if it gets the job done.

Unitary Executive Theory

Current UNC Coach Roy Williams has surrounded himself with two assistant coaches in Joe Holladay and Steve Robinson, who have over fifty years of coaching experience between them. He has the confidence to listen to their ideas and trusts them to run elements of the team's practices. Similarly, Obama has selected Joe Biden, who has served for thirty-five years in the U.S. Senate, to be his running mate, and is known for being a respectful listener who asks acute questions of his advisors.

With the recent appointment of Nate James as assistant coach, Coach K's three assistants--Chris Collins being the other--are now all former players of his, none of whom have much coaching experience. This sort of cronyism and insularity is all too common in George W. Bush's administration, and McCain's selection of a comically inexperienced Sarah Palin is an indication that he may also tread down that same path.

The Audacity of Hope

To me, the choice is clear. I hope my fellow Tar Heels share my vision and help Obama win North Carolina in November! If the Heels get to shake Obama's hand in a post-championship visit to the White House next spring, I will be able to die a very happy man.

Go Heels! Vote Obama!

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At 8/29/2008 2:11 PM, Blogger RyanP said...

yeah, but at least Sarah Palin is good looking

Between Michelle Obama and Sarah Palin, these next few months will be quite the eye candy extravaganza.

Sorry Cindy McCain.

At 8/29/2008 2:36 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

Huffpost has pictures of Palin as a baller (looks scrappy!) and a beauty pageant contestant.

At 8/29/2008 3:16 PM, Blogger Graydon said...

To be honest, I'm pretty smitten with the Biden gals. Jill is lovely for an older women, but really it's Joe's daughter. She's a looker if I do say so myself.

At 8/29/2008 3:53 PM, Blogger bernard snowy said...

Obligatory name-dropping: Phil Ford's kids go to the same high school as my little sister. My parents got to know him from track meets, and I actually got to meet him once earlier this year. Dude was really nice, and he passed on some serious athletic talent: his daughter's a very good sprinter and long jumper and set a state record this past year in the triple-jump, and his son is apparently an awesome hurdler (he was hurt this year, so he didn't compete much).

Anyway. I don't know if imagining former basketball greats in the stands at their kids' track meets is FD or not, but still.

At 8/29/2008 3:53 PM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

Seeing that you have Carolina roots you'll be aware of what Bush and Rove did to McCain during the '00 election. If you paid alittle attention you might know that the Bush Administration and McCain have been far from chummy. If you bothered to look into Palin a little deeper then her basketball skills and good looks you'll find a principled Executive who put through legislation that took a contract away from a company her husband works for, vetoed a bill that would have taken away the civil union rights from same sex partners, blew the whistle on fellow Republicans for corruption and developed alternative energy projects in Alaska.

Palin= Microwave Johnson
Better player on the bench then the opposition has starting.

At 8/29/2008 4:02 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

@Lobstah: Speaking of paying attention, you do know Rove advises McCain now, right? That he would hire someone who spread rumors about him having a black daughter tells me all I need to know about his personal ambition and his integrity. I know he wasn't chummy with Bush and Rove, but you wouldn't know it from looking at him now.

I'm glad to know that you are cool with Palin's two years of executive experience, but I wouldn't feel comfortable with a vice president who is that inexperienced. And I looked into her career deep enough to know she only vetoed that bill because she was advised that the bill would be found unconstitutional if it passed.

Note that I never said anything about her looks. Don't put that on me.

At 8/29/2008 4:04 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

You're right, only the most intense political junkies know about the 2000 Republican primary. And of course McCain's earlier battles with Bush show what kind of president he'll be—which is why he's playing them up now!

I could give a fuck less about women, or state-level government (IT DOESN'T COUNT), or gays, or Alaska, which is even less of a state than Hawaii, and is at once a welfare state and a socialist nightmare.

At 8/29/2008 4:11 PM, Blogger Mark said...

I don't know if it's fair to just assume that she's scrappy. Also, I'm not sure if the cronyism comparison flies. Bush 2 surrounded himself with a lot of experienced advisors, though they all, unsurprisingly, had similar policy viewpoints. I wonder if we'll ever see something like the Lincoln Cabinet, with great talent wanting to go in different directions. I digress. I'm unsure that McCain picking a relative newcomer indicates a continuation of cronyism. I would think it means anything but.

Mr. Shoals, why doesn't state government count? Governors (or veeps) have had a stranglehold on the Presidency since JFK.

At 8/29/2008 4:14 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

I was referring to the Republican meme that Obama's time in the state Senate doesn't count as meaningful experience.

At 8/29/2008 4:20 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

@Mark: Look, it's not going to match up perfectly--I'm comparing college basketball teams and presidential candidates! As far as Bush and cronyism, I got one word for you: Katrina.

The Palin pick is more about inexperience and someone who's likely to be very malleable on policy, especially on foreign relations and national security, an area where she apparently has zero experience. The likelihood that she bucks McCain and his advisers is about the same as Nate James disagreeing with Coach K on strategy.

At 8/29/2008 4:23 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

@Mark: Also, what's unfair about assuming she was scrappy? That's hardly a negative thing, and if she had genuine talent, why didn't she play college ball?

At 8/29/2008 4:31 PM, Blogger Mark said...

Gotcha. I can follow a lot of what goes on here, but every now and then I get lost.

At 8/29/2008 4:35 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

Also, this Democratic ticket (including families) is the most attractive in American history. So don't give me this beauty queen crap, or remind me that Cindy (who the fuck has the real name "Cindy?") was a cheerleader.

At 8/29/2008 4:42 PM, Blogger Graydon said...

@Lobstah: I agree with Recluse's remarks, but really my issue with McCain isn't whether he's "chummy" with Bush or not. Or even if Rove is his political advisor. Fact of the matter is, McCain had the policy positions and political capital to legitimately distance himself from the current administration but he has chosen to take steps towards Bush, not away from him. Backing down from the abortion platform reforms he sought in 2000. Pledging to continue the Bush tax cuts, even when he opposed them as a Senator.

Plus, the fact of the matter is, they cannot look America in the eye and tell us that Obama doesn't have enough experience when they put a person with no semblance of FP experience whatsoever one gunshot, one car wreck, one heart attack away from the presidency. If she is prepared to assume the presidency at a moments notice, Obama certainly is.

I apologize for getting into the politics thing, I particularly avoid the FD comments when they turn into this, but I feel like the content lately has legitimized these types of comments more.

At 8/29/2008 5:01 PM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

I assumed he knew about the 2000 primary.

What did Obama accomplish as State Senator?

Are you saying the Democrat's meme about McCain being McBush is any more valid? The above post, and many others certainly follow that line of thinking. If the reality of McCain was as present in your mind as the Democrats' current fantasy of McCain were then these comments, the posts and plenty of your points would be far more valid then they are. You might still disagree with me in principles of what is best for the country, but at least it would reflect the reality. McCain is nothing like Bush and you aught to know that.

Palin has accomplished real change instead of talking about it. Are you aware of the $400 million in federal funding that Palin refused because she wants Alaska to be self sufficient? Oh, and congratulations on getting into the head of another politician. Now you visited Palin's skull and discovered that she protected the constitutional rights of civil unions between gays because it was the constitutional thing to do. In other words, someone going against their personal moral code or self-interest because they want to remain within the law is a bad thing?

The difference between Palin and Obama, in terms of accomplishments while in office (have you seen the results of the Ayers/Obama attempts at education reform in Chicago?) are huge in that one has been busy improving the state she was elected to govern while the other spent his one term in office running for another office. One is running for the actual presidency, while the superior candidate is running for the lesser job. I know, I know... its all about style.

My guess, Obama was as popular as he will get right around that time I saw him speak here in Portland. Palin will draw in enough Clinton supporters to win by 4-5 points. McCain will be a one term President and Palin will run against Hillary in 2012. BTW, I heard about Palin this morning because my buddy was congratulating me for calling that pick about a month or so ago. I also picked the Lakers in 5, so we'll see.

Regarding Lincoln, it would take a very special, highly compassionate, disciplined, principled and articulate politician to do what Lincoln did. Bush's cronyism was a major flaw rooted in self-righteousness and it was compounded by a Republican congress that had gotten fat with its success since Gingrich. You can make great arguments that Clinton's centrism allowed a Republican congress to legislate much of the 90's economic boom. This led to the cronyism that set us back under Bush and then a Democratic Congress, more interested in winning this coming election then in governing properly, has set us back even farther in the last 2 years. A leader like Lincoln might have incorporated enough elements of both sides to have sustained and maybe built on our success since the late 80's. This is one of many reasons I prefer McCain to Bush or Obama. I don't agree with everything McCain does but I agree enough to be okay with him in general. Until he became the candidate against Obama, plenty of Dems liked McCain. Even Biden said he would accept a VP nod from McCain. Look at the bi-partisan legislation that has his name on it. Its not terribly FD but McCain is a centrist and in my opinion hugely out maneuvered Obama with the contrast between VP picks. If Obama had any balls he'd do a townhall with McCain and take it like a man. You can't govern in front of a teleprompter.

At 8/29/2008 5:04 PM, Blogger Mr. Six said...

Although McCain seemed offended by what happened in Carolina in 2000, he's obviously made his political peace with it. Around that time, he had deviated from GOP orthodoxy on domestic issues just enough to be able to craft an independent image. Anyone who looks every cursorily at this voting record since then will see that he has been bringing himself in line with Bush policy. Any differences now are nonexistent or irrelevant.

On foreign policy, McCain's devotion to American unilateralism and imperialism actually pre-dates Bush's and is often and the extreme end of even neocon absurdism. His alleged biggest strength can basically be boiled down to a foreign policy of fighting everyone everywhere. It's tough guy talk as a substitute for actual knowledge of what's happening in the world and novel ideas for how to address them.

His reconciliation with Rove--coupled with taking on a Rove protege as his campaign manager--is particularly interesting. It certainly points to a continuation of Bush cronyism, as does his cozying up with that end of the GOP. It also implies that either McCain lied when he said that he was offended by events in 2000 or he's willing to wed his political future to a man he knows to be immoral. Either way, it doesn't speak well of McCain.

As for Pallin, I don't know why anyone cares about her experience or where in government she got it. I don't know why any Dem would focus on that either. She's a creationist. She opposes abortion rights. (i.e. a woman who actually believes in the regression of women's rights. That's a winning pick?) She's evangenlical. I take those as the hallmarks of the many loyalists who fall in line and take their orders when they come from GOP central. In other words, she probably plays basketball like someone on an intramural squad at Liberty University. I also take it to mean that, whatever she may have done while in the wilderness, now that she's part of the machine, like McCain, she'll just be a voice for GOP orthodoxy and a continuation of the last eight years. I agree with Barry: eight is enough.

At 8/29/2008 5:14 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

@Lobstah: I'm not sure what your point about the civil unions legislation is, it seems like you're trying to have it both ways. Do you like that she supports civil unions for homosexuals or not? Anyway, I didn't delve into her skull (uh, gross), the words came out of her mouth: "We believe we have no more judicial options to pursue. So we may disagree with the foundation there, the rationale behind the ruling, but our responsibility is to proceed forward with the law and abide by the constitution." Look it up.

You made a good case for Obama there in your last paragraph, since of anyone in this election, he is the closest to your dream candidate: "very special, highly compassionate, disciplined, principled and articulate politician." You should read last week's NY Times magazine piece on Obama's economic plan. It sounds right up your alley (seriously).

Anyway, nice job trying to tie Ayers to Obama, way to stay on message. When do you start your AM talk radio gig? Or is the frozen yogurt business too lucrative to leave?

At 8/29/2008 5:21 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

A 4-5% victory is a near-landslide. Excuse me while I prepare a post on Josh Smith blocking 18 shots a game next year.

I also find it highly amusing that R. Lobstah spends all his time on an obviously left-leaning site trying to convince us that Obama is a fraud. We're not swing voters in Indiana. If you want to have an intelligent conversation about whether or not said voters will back or the other, that's one thing, but telling die-hard Dems that their candidate sucks (and occaisonally, that McCain is the Truth) strikes me as a massive waste of time.

Oh, I forgot about the 4-5% McCain will pick up in Hillary voters. That's who this is directed at.

At 8/29/2008 5:31 PM, Blogger O said...

I for one am sick of these milton friedman disciples.

Here's one for the theme.

Just like the neocons used the shock of 9/11 to secure funding and influence to execute their project for the new american century, colangelo used the shock of olympic failure in 2004 to make sure that the US Mens b-ball team invaded beijing fully prepared to win the gold.

im feeling the new website content.

At 8/29/2008 5:33 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

Don't tell Cokie Roberts, but Palin spent a semester at Hawaii Pacific College! And she's married to an Eskimo. It's all so......foreign.

At 8/29/2008 5:37 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

So if Eskimos are practically black (right? that's what someone told me) and Palin's a lady, the McCain Second Couple will be knocking down all the doors Obama and Hillary tried to—but ON ONE SINGLE TICKET. DREAM TICKET MOTHERFUCKEERS!

Hillary/Obama pitted African-Americans and Women Americans against each other, and black women had to make the toughest decisions of their lives. Thank god John McCain has found a way to unite the country and heal these wounds . . AND move us forward with regard to the great cause of social justice.

At 8/29/2008 5:43 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

This article seems to indicate that Todd Palin's mom is only a quarter Eskimo, so I guess that makes him an octoroon?

At 8/29/2008 5:44 PM, Blogger El Presidente said...

I hope Tyler Hansbrough makes it in this league, I'd like to see him punch Spencer Hawes in the face.

At 8/29/2008 5:51 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

I like that Spencer Hawes is seen as "political," which is kind of like calling that guy in the Applebee's commercials a "chef."

BR, your allusion to the famous "Eskimo one drop" rule only strengthens my conviction that these two are poised to make even more history than I thought.

Todd Harris is a poor man's Ari Fleisher. Fleisher is a Jew snake, but Harris just comes off as a malicious turtle. Nice try, asshole. I hope you cry often.

At 8/29/2008 5:55 PM, Blogger El Presidente said...

Also, on Karl Rove:

"In December 1969, the man Rove had known as his father left the family, and divorced Rove's mother soon afterward; it later became known he was homosexual.[6][7] After his parents' divorce, Rove learned from his aunt and uncle that the man who had raised him was not his biological father; both he and his older brother Eric were the children of another man. Rove has expressed great love and admiration for his adoptive father and for "how selfless" his love had been.[8] In 1981 Rove's mother committed suicide in Reno, Nevada.[8]"

That should help a few uninformed people. Also, supposedly his "father" is heavily into body modification, specifically the genitalia.

And r. lobstah, you will never escape your prediction here. Ever.

wv - beefpgz - CP3 vs. Deron

At 8/29/2008 6:07 PM, Blogger Jason Gill said...

Off topic, but thanks Recluse, for giving ups to Kansas. We've been cast aside for too long (maybe rightfully).

But we're the home of Naismith, Dean Smith, Roy Williams, Obama, Brown vs. Board and we have a mural of John Brown burning slavery to the ground in our capital. Not to mention a continually FD brand of college ball featuring 7 foot Russians catching lob passes from 5'10 points from the south side. We deserve a little love.

As for McCain, I don't know which is more funny that he thinks an anti-choice, evangelical, creationist fundamentalist can win Hillary Democrats, or that he thinks he can still cling to his self styled maverick persona with said VP.

At 8/29/2008 6:26 PM, Blogger RyanP said...

"I hope Tyler Hansbrough makes it in this league, I'd like to see him punch Spencer Hawes in the face."

I second the above statement.

Also, can we truely feel that McCain will do what's best for the whole country (not just top 2%, ahem), I mean, this guy got totally screwed by the Bush Campaign in 2000 with all of the illegitimate child hearsay. Then just months later he just pretends it's no big deal and backs Bush... even in 04 against his old buddy John Kerry. Way to stick up for a fellow patriot and hero McCain. What a noble soul you have kind sir.

Now he aligns himself with 90%, 90%, yes 90% of Bush's policies, past and present.

Like Al Gore so emphatically stated,

"Hey, I believe in recycling, but that's ridiculous."

After 4 years of McCain, expect the middle class to no longer be in the middle. We will then have two classes, something Bush is in favor of-- the haves and the have nots.

With Barack, the middle class will be taxed less, the rich more. I hardly see how that is socialism or redistribution. It's not like you will go down from 350,000 a year to 300,000. Just a few thousand dollars to help ease the burden on parents working their tails off 5, 6 days a week, the very people who make this country go.

But really I guess if you're just making 3 mil a year, meh, you're just middle class anyway according to McCain.

Whatever, if it weren't for the whole oops in Florida, this country would be just sparkling right now, like the Clinton years.

At 8/29/2008 6:27 PM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

Mr Six,
I'm a Jew. Under Jewish law, a child is not a child until it is born which allows for abortion way after it is legal here in the States. I disagree with Jewish law. I was as protective of my son from the moment I knew he'd been conceived as I am now and the same goes with my currently unborn daughter. That's a personal feeling and I understand that not everybody feels that way. I wonder then, why do we jail stressed out parents who shake their baby to death or drown their children? Why not go Roman here and give me the right to execute any of my children if I want to? I don't see why birth or reaching 20 whatever weeks gestation transforms the same act from abortion to murder. That can be parental rights we can all get behind. It empowers both parents and for a period much longer then the current situation. I'm not saying that this is a convincing argument for anyone reading this but you might want to be a little more mountainous in your view of what is behind other people's thinking. As for Palin's support for teaching creationism, well, I don't see the point to making that a State mandated curriculum and haven't heard any good arguments for it. Its a trifling as far as I'm concerned. The school system has much bigger problems then creation vs evolution.

I personally support civil unions for gays and like the idea of gays having the right to adopt.

The point I was making is that BS said that Palin only did it because it was her constitutional mandate. She was doing the right thing by the constitution, which happens to be the executive's job. So, seeing that she went against her personal moral code because the Constitution mandated that she do so is actually a positive, as far as I'm concerned. Then again, I don't care if someone hates Jews. As far as I'm concerned, that's fine. I just have a problem with Jew haters or even Jew lovers who will put us in ovens. Its the actions and intent that matter to me, not their skull.

"very special, highly compassionate, disciplined, principled and articulate politician."

Obama reads teleprompters well. Did you see him in Saddlebrook? How is he more disciplined then McCain? What are the fruits of Obama's compassion. I'll look up the NY Times piece, thanks.

The frozen yogurt business is not lucrative enough for me to leave, but thanks for caring. You may or may not care but I can't stand Medved, Prager, Savage or Limbaugh. They bore the shit out of me. I like Dennis Miller though, so maybe I'm an AM zombie. Lets get back to Ayers for a second here. There is all the evidence in the world that they worked closely together. Ayers himself insists that he is a Marxist out to revolutionize the education system. Obama used to give lectures on the Saul Alinsky method. Both Alinsky and Ayers are revolutionaries in the Marxist vein. Am I supposed not to take that seriously? Would you take it seriously if McCain and David Duke had that sort of relationship, working together to teach racial superiority in school in Phoenix? Its pretty thoughless to be so supportive of your candidate that you chalk up fair criticism as line toeing. How about you present me with reasons to think these ties are not as strong as it appears rather then make your point by making me look petty in front of all your friends.

I never said that McCain was the truth. I was saying that you might want to address the truth of what McCain says and does rather then the Democrat memes.

4 or 5 points is what I meant to say and I think Obama fucked up that bad.

So, what are you saying Shoals, even if Obama's fraudulence is convincing you'll vote for him? Are you saying that you will not accept any new information or possibly recognize some validity to certain points? With all that talk of liberated fandome you are die-hard Dems? What exactly is liberating about being a diehard for either party?

I do this because I think you actually think. If I'm wrong about the election then fair enough, I also hope I'm wrong about Obama. I don't care which party is in the White House so long as they do the right thing.

el Presidente,
Hey, I take my licks from Celtics fans. At least you all would be pretty funny and creative in your gloating.

At 8/29/2008 6:45 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

@Lobstah: This is the last thing from me today, but how can you equate Marxism with white supremacy? How can you equate Saul Alinsky with David Duke? It's such an absurd comparison, it defeats your whole argument.

If there's so much of it, please show me evidence that Bill Ayers and Barack Obama ever worked closely together. And serving on the same committee doesn't count. I'm going to need more than that. Steven Calabresi and Bernadine Dohrn both serve on the Northwestern Law School faculty. I guess he's also a radical, left-wing terrorist by association?

The truth is that Obama is much, much closer to Chuck Hagel, a Republican, than he is to Ayers or any left-wing radical.

At 8/29/2008 7:00 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

Wow I am confused. For one, I don't know what a "costitutional mandate" is, so that couldn't have been me. I am not sure why or how you played the Holocaust card, or why you'd bring up the Jewish law about when life begins unless you were pointing out that it's a loophole that allows for baby-eating.

In all seriousness, all I was saying was that you should recognize your audience, like Obama did at Saddlebrook, where he had to tread lightly, and present issues as fuzzy so he could show might be semi-sympathetic to evangelical causes. Your anti-Obama tirades, which bring in everything at once and mix some semi-credible material with discredited b.s., just aren't going to play well here. You want to debate whether today's McCain is the same as Bush? Let's look at the trajectory of his career between then and now. You want to say Obama was useless in the state and U.S. Senate? Fine, let's have that debate. But throwing a wall of right-ism up and expecting anything other than a hostile reaction strikes me as self-defeating.

At 8/29/2008 7:02 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

Fuck it, I lied. I just re-read your last comment, and that's a nice little trick you tried to pull with this line, "How about you present me with reasons to think these ties are not as strong as it appears?" I see what you did. You take what's at best a severe exaggeration and at worst a lie (that Ayers and Obama are boys) and then said I would have to disprove it, or else it's true. Um, no. I've never seen any compelling evidence that they're more than passing acquaintances, so it's beyond stupid for anyone, especially me, to try to dig up evidence that a deep relationship doesn't exist. I don't even know what negative evidence would be, pictures of Obama with people who aren't Bill Ayers? Documentation of work he's done without Bill Ayers?

Come back when you have something substantive to say.

At 8/29/2008 8:15 PM, Blogger themarkpike said...

I'd like to think the catalyst for some of this post were my comments here.

As a Dukie, sadly, my only rebuttal is Reggie Love and Grant "Capitol" Hill.

At 8/29/2008 8:25 PM, Blogger Mr. Six said...

@ R. Lobstah

So, you wouldn't have an abortion; you don't support requiring the teaching of creationism in schools, but you don't think it's a big deal either way; and you support civil unions. Thanks for the bits of biography. What does that have to do with Pallin? She opposes abortion rights; thinks teaching of creationism should be required; and publicly supported amending the state constitution to prohibit civil unions. She also doesn't believe in anthropogenic global warming. In the past eight years, those have been relatively reliable predictors of a person who will toe the GOP line and abuse power for strictly partisan purposes.

So make the case for why I should think her candidacy indicates a new direction for the GOP. Consider also attempt to make the positive case that President McCain will be different from Candidate McCain.

You also don't have anything to say about why, nationally, women will cross party lines to vote for a woman whose established views are regressive on issues for women and families. In other words, although some female Clinton supports might vote GOP because of Pallin, it's a stretch to argue that statistically significant numbers of them will vote against their interests just to cast a ballot for a female VP.

Attempting to discredit Obama by minimizing his obvious talents, ignoring his resume, and baldly stating that he isn't what he obviously is, isn't going to get you very far. Arguing that he's a secret Marxist revolutionary is particularly absurd. Not only does it lack evidence to support it, it's not even consistent with more easily established facts.

And then there's just your frequent turns to simple illogic. Equating Marxism and David Duke is a false analogy. Marxism is a broad philosophical system; people with varying beliefs can claim to be Marxists, and people can use pieces of Marxist analysis without even adopting an overarching Marxist philosophy. David Duke is a white supremacist. His white supremacist beliefs speak for themselves. If you want to make the case that Obama is planning to take the White House so that he can institute some flavor Marxism, you should really have more than guilt by association (another fallacy) or the possible adoption of some teaching or organizing methods (20+ years ago) that incorporate modes of Marxist analysis.

Or maybe you're just a troll.

[Almost forgot, if you "have a problem with ... Jew lovers who want will put us in ovens," why are you backing McCain, a man now in bed with groups who support Israeli security solely to ensure Jesus's return--an event that, if those same McCain bedmates are to be believed, will result in the death of a few million Jews?]

At 8/29/2008 9:36 PM, Blogger jawaan oldham said...

Not to mention, a vote for McCain/Palin is a vote against polar bears, and what kind of sick fuck doesn't like polar bears?

I love the calm, rational debate that we get every four years. It's also always nice to be reminded that Karl Marx was a centrist Democrat and that comparing people to David Duke is a loophole in Godwin's Law because Duke doesn't rhyme with Schicklgruber.

Being of slightly less serious bent than some, I'm choosing to focus more on the race for Most Improved Player this upcoming year: Gilbert vs. Wade?

wv: gpqmzy---what happens to the gop when we dose their martinis with special k

At 8/30/2008 4:10 AM, Blogger goathair said...

I'd vote for Perkins in a heartbeat.

At 8/30/2008 10:17 AM, Blogger T. said...

Amare is going to Sierra Leone.


At 8/30/2008 12:26 PM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

JO, does MIP=Not injured this year?
I'm thinking Ramon Sessions.

Responses to my comments make me think that what I've written is being misconstrued, some of it on purpose.

So, your argumentative strategy is to make me look stupid with the "costititional mandate" rather then try to understand what was clearly a typo? Is it at all possible I have valid points or is political hipness the greater requirement?

Mr Six,
Marxists criminalize individual ownership of capital. That is what Ayers is about. Go read his website. Ayers and Obama worked closely together in the Annenburg Challenge, a project which trains educators in a manner consistent with Ayers' beliefs. If Obama was aware of Ayers' current politics and what he is trying to achieve in the education system, and he worked with him to help achieve it, then its not guilt by association. Add in the Alinsky connection and it is difficult not to think that Obama has a hardon for the revolution.

From your last paragraph I am guessing you don't know much about the Evangelical church. Baptists (like Carter) have a very different view of end-times then the Evangelicals do. Look into it.

I don't think I'm a troll. I like this forum and can see how my intrusions alter its flavor and it looks like this flavor is unwelcome. I don't mind stopping if some of the higher ups wish. I'll still buy the book.

At 8/30/2008 12:35 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...


In 2000, Obama lost a bitter Congressional race against former Panther Bobby Rush. Clearly, the Black radicals of the 1960's did not want to take his side. Now, are you saying that this invalidation of Obama means less than the white ex-Weatherman's love for him? Or that black radicals are allowed to repent, while white ones aren't? Either is really fucked up, dude.

(P.S. Yes, I know Rush now supports Obama. Just trying to get on your level.)

At 8/30/2008 2:22 PM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

I don't know enough about the Rush v Obama race to comment on what happened there. I'm not particularly concerned about whether the wealth redustribution will be based or race, national region, number or generations legally in the US, or to those entering, staying and working here illegally. I don't want the Federal governent to redistribute wealth. Not for corporations, not to bail out home owners or lenders, orvanything of that sort. Maybe Obama lost to Rush because he hadn't yet shown his street cred. Maybe Obama lost to Rush because he is not a revolutionary. I'm saying that the Ayers connection is more likely an indication of a major flaw then of strength. His involvement with the Alinsky method is another indicator. His involvements in Kenya are another indicator. His autobiography is another indicator. His church is another indicator. How many breadcrumbs do we need before we conclude it's a trail?

At 8/30/2008 5:47 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

A trail to what? Do you really think Obama's secretly a black nationalist revolutionary? Really? Seriously?

At 8/31/2008 1:23 AM, Blogger Nick said...

I'm gonna eschew rhetorically persuasive strategies, reasonableness, all that jazz, and just say: so many americans are like children when it comes to actual left politics. this r lobster cat can actually write coherent sentences, which fact alone elevates his game above 95% of online conservatives--and yet he think a politically ambitious American of today could be a Marxist? dude, read some actual books; or, even, simply use common sense. there is not a politically ambitious American alive who is anything like a Marxist. even Bernie Sanders is basically a social democrat, to the right of Chomsky. frankly, it'd be useful if the left actually had some purchase here, but it doesn't. red-baiting, in the eyes of the world, marks Americans as ignorant children (yes, I was born here). you should grow the fuck up and cut it out, r, l. nobody thoughtful will respect you more for doing this: they'll think you're either a fool or an ideologue.

At 8/31/2008 5:51 AM, Blogger Mr. Six said...

This entire discuss of Marxism is absurd. It's obvious absurdity is just one indication of your trolling. You have no evidence of Barack believing in Marxism. You can't articulate what you think he'd do in the White House, if he were a Marxist, that would reflect that philosophy. Your "breadcrumbs" are totally incoherent. If you're just going to spew conspiracy theory humbug, at least make it interesting.

That you don't know or are feigning ignorance of the beliefs of many of the evangelicals with whom McCain has gotten into bed is another indication of trolling.

At 8/31/2008 6:30 AM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

Brown Recluse,
I never said that he was a black nationalist revolutionary.

I spent the day maturing and having taken your advise I have read a book. Now I get it. A politically ambitious politician in America couldn't be Marxist because... he just can't.

95% of what online writers write is incoherent. Left or right, I see idiotic statements, trolling and regurgitation of memes. I think I'm trying really hard not be that sort of writer. In the sense that I am accusing Obama of being significantly more leftist at his core then he is letting on, then I suppose I am red-baiting. It seems to me that I'm bringing up valid reasons for thinking that Obama is significantly more leftist then he is letting on.

Mr Six,
Which Evangelicals do you mean? Which of them wants an end of days that kills the Jews? Name names, provide some examples.

You want an articulations of what Obama might do as President?

Appoint Linda Darling-Hammond as Sec of Education. She of the "education debt" endorsement. Or maybe Mike Klonsky gets that job. Both work in Obama's campaign. Klonskey is an Ayers protege. Both worked on the Annenberg Challenge. Both are still involved in education reform along Ayers' lines. Both are far to the Left of what most Americans expect from Obama.

At 8/31/2008 10:18 AM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

I asked a question--where does this breadcrumb trail lead?--and suggested one possible answer, based on your various, unconnected accusations about Obama. If I got it wrong, then where does this disjointed, partially non-existent trail lead?

Also, please share with us your concerns about education reform and your desired state of affairs with regard to our nation's children. So far, all I know is that you aren't really in favor of teaching Christian creationism in public schools, but also aren't troubled by the possibility.

At 8/31/2008 2:58 PM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

Brown Recluse,
I do not accept your view that the "breadcrumbs" are disjointed. Have you read Obama's book? Are you familiar with his self admitted mentor in Hawaii? Have you read about Ayers' "education theories"? Are you familiar with the goals of the Adennberg Challange, it's failures while Obama was it's chairman, and the role of various members (as well as the ideology) and their current roles in Obama's campaign? Start with the names I listed in my last comments.

Forty years ago we were capable of teaching kids the very simple and important skills of the maths, literacy and critical thought. 30 years before that, some thought we had the best education system in the world. What has changed since then? I find Jacques Barzun's writing on education to be insightful, concise and relevent.

You talk about a practically non-existent trail of crumbs. This only reflects a practically non-existent trail of political accomplishments by Obama. I've had to see how Obama's rhetoric matches his actions. I've had to guess his desires by learning about the accomplishments and aims of his allies and mentors. How else can I decide whether I should vote for him, by his love for hoop, his taste in music, the symetry of his face, his vocal cadence? In order to vote for the man one would have to believe in a myth that you can judge a man's personality by observing the style that manifests in what they do well.

At 8/31/2008 3:26 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...


This is boring, and choking the atmosphere. We get it.

At 8/31/2008 4:24 PM, Blogger R. Lobstah said...

Fair enough. Correcting false assumptions is pretty boring.

At 8/31/2008 4:28 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

I agree, this is pretty much pointless, but I can't help myself on this one last point. It is an outright lie to say that the only way to learn how Obama is likely to govern is to look at "the accomplishments and aims of his allies and mentors" or, worse, his "style." The former is just stupid the latter is a gross mischaracterization of anything Shoals or I or anyone else on this site has ever had to say about Obama.

If you want to know how Obama might govern, go to his fucking website: http://www.barackobama.com/issues/. There's a lot of shit there, more than on McCain's website, for sure.

The End.

At 4/07/2009 1:13 AM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

It's official, I can die happy. YESSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11

At 4/13/2009 2:08 AM, Blogger 平平 said...



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