January 23, 2007

Fox smears Clinton and Obama in one broad stroke.

Is there any other way to look at it?

72 comments:

hdhouse said...

Keith on MSNBC has taken to calling Faux News "Faux NOTHING" because whatever it is, it isn't news.

That appears to be appropos for the lot of them. I presume that this offers some explanation as to why the Washington Times has a circulation placing them about 106th or something...distanced by such huge circs. as the fort wayne journal gazette and the colorado springs gazette.

Sloanasaurus said...

Fox should have checked their sources - something the liberal media doesn't do either.

At least Fox calls terrorists... terrorists.

Bruce Hayden said...

Well, maybe it did come out of the Clinton camp. The reason that that is somewhat credible is that she does have that reputation - Mrs. Clinton almost alone seems to have invented the "politics of personal destruction".

MadisonMan said...

Is there any other way to look at it?

No, I'd say you hit the nail on the head.

Ann Althouse said...

Yes, but Bruce, they needed to verify it first, otherwise it's just more fake-but-accurate.

dix said...

Keith on MSNBC has taken . . .

. . . the Washington Times has a circulation placing them about 106th or something...


Technically if you want to disparage someone or something for low circulation/ratings, there are stronger examples to cite besides Keith Olbermann.

Balfegor said...

Yes, but Bruce, they needed to verify it first, otherwise it's just more fake-but-accurate.

It's actually a pity the accusation isn't true. Wouldn't it actually, once you step back a moment and think, be an advantage to be a Presidential candidate who's been in a madrassah? And came out, you know, not frothing about the insidious power of the Jews and the downfall of vulgar America and all. Every time someone tried to say something about madrassahs one way or the other, you could (probably unfairly) pull out the personal experience card and say, "you don't know what you're talking about." And in a normal madrassah, my understanding is that you're expected to learn classical Arabic, so as to be able to read the Koran properly in the original. That would be an advantage too. You could harangue Middle Eastern leaders in the language of the Prophet. Cite Koranic verses with authority. Appear on Arabic-language TV and make our case directly. Against these advantages, the "sleeper agent" fear seems pretty minor, particularly given the kind of scrutiny a presidential candidate can be expected to undergo. And in a long campaign, I think there'd be plenty of time for people to get around their initial negative reaction.

The Tensor said...

The politics of personal destruction have failed. We must make them work again!

A linguistic note: while the word madrasah simply means 'school' in Arabic, as a loan word in Indonesian it does seem to refer specifically to Islamic schools. (Though I should note that <disclaim>I don't speak Indonesian</disclaim>.) This report, for example, lists Islamic schools as a separate category from ordinary schools (sekolah), with different exams required and certificates awarded. So unless the Insight people can dig up evidence that the school Obama attended was a madrasah at the time but later became a merely predominantly-Muslim public school, they ought to print a retraction.

And burn the source, of course.

VICTOR said...

The piece glosses over an issue - that a maddrassah is not necessarily the typical islamic fundamentalist school we envision in the Pakistan border area. But then again understanding of other cultures, particularly Islamic cultures is not our strong suit.

Anonymous said...

It's not the Washington Times, it's their sister publication Insight. The Times is certainly conservative-slanting but still, shall we say, reality-based.

What's surprising is that FNC picked up a story from Insight at all. Remember their other "scoops"? That Bush was drinking again? They were tied up in the fact-free Kerry affair rumor in early 2004 as well.

Nobody has taken them seriously for years, at least since it stopped publishing on paper. It's been essentially defunct for years, updating its website occasionally to publish a story which, by virtue of appearing there in the first place, should be instantly discounted.

I'm no conspiracy theorist, but I'm willing to entertain the idea Murdoch leaned on Ailes as a favor to the Clintons.

Bruce Hayden said...

I will agree that it should have been verified. From that point of view, Fox looks just as bad as CBS did with the Rather story, at least initially. We shall see though if they back down, as CBS did only after an extended period of time and after being under a lot of pressure to do so. Mary Mapes to this day is still in denial.

The thing that the two stories have in common is that they were marginally believable. The stories fit some people's preconceived notions. In this case, that the Democrats would even think of nominating someone with that sort of background (though the story I heard was that it was maybe 1st and 2nd grade, which would have had almost no affect on Obama). Esp. in view of a Democratic Muslim being recently sworn in to Congress.

I do think that it would be esp. humorous if the story had been feed by Hillary's camp to the Fox people, knowing that they couldn't resist it. It may take a couple of decades to find this out though.

SteveR said...

"Keith on MSNBC"

Yeah that's a news expert.

Anonymous said...

Why even respond to such a nonsensical statement as Bruce's, Ann? In Bruce's world, Hillary and other Democrats spend their nights feeding on the blood of orphans and sending love letters to Al Qaeda to boost their confidence.

It is funny, however, that right-wingers seem to never have a problem when Fox News screws up massively, but we have to listen to their Buddhist mantra of "MSM....MSM....MSM" on every blog about everything that they "suspect" doesn't fit their paradigm like the Abu Jamal incident.

yetanotherjohn said...

"Fox says two of its programs merely took note of what Insight had reported. "

Shouldn't at least some of the ire be directed towards "Insight" who reported it.

"The morning show "Fox & Friends" aired a clarification yesterday, reporting that Obama's camp had called the story "completely ridiculous" and that "the Clinton camp has said, 'We had nothing to do with that.' ""

So the Insight report was mentioned one night, then a clarification was made next morning.

What more would you have wanted Fox to do?

Anne,

Think about what you said in the comment. 'Yes, but Bruce, they needed to verify it first, otherwise it's just more fake-but-accurate. '

Should that also be the standard for the New York Times anonymous sourced articles? That no other media should discuss them until the other media has also verified the details. I would agree in a philosophical sense that it would be a better world, but I'm not sure you would want to live in the practical reality of that world. Extending the principle, should any news organization report what is gathered by any other news organization with out 'verifying it first'. That would certainly increase the accuracy of the news reported, but at a huge cost and duplication of effort.

I think as consumers of news we need to look at every source of news and develop our own sense of fairness and accuracy from that source. How do they handle it when there is an error?

Sloanasaurus said...

I have now read that Obama did attend a muslim school in Indonesia, which technically is called a madrassa (the arabic word for school). However, the rub is that the term madrassa commonly means fanatical religious school, which apparently is not a good description of the school Obama attended.

Nevertheless, it is fair to point out that Obama's father and step father were muslims, and that Obama had this influence in his life. This is fair game. Do you want to vote for a president that was raised partially in a muslim environment? Is such a person American enough to understand America? How is that different from Hillary whose upbringing is more traditional American.

I am sure Hillary will point out these differences...and she should. She should also point out that Obama was a cocaine user.

Zeb Quinn said...

"Hardi Priyono, deputy headmaster of the Basuki school in Indonesia, told CNN that his institution -- which Obama attended four decades ago, beginning when he was 6 -- is not a madrassah..."

... "This is a public school," Priyono told CNN correspondent John Vause in Jakarta. "We don't focus on religion." Classes in Islam are offered to the predominantly Muslim students at the school, CNN reported."


I dunno. Still looks viable to me. Do the math. When we're talking about a "public school" that "teaches Islam" in a place that's overwhelmingly Muslim and that has long been a hotbed of militant Islam, we're not talking about the schoolhouse on Little House on the Prairie here. In fact, we're probably talking about a school that's "not a madrassah" in name only.

And if Hillary, bless her little black heart, was the one who discovered it and disseminated it, more power to her. It's legitimate grist for the mill.

Wade_Garrett said...

"Madrassah" means "school" in Arabic. plenty of people attend secular Madrassahs.

How has the Washington Times not been slapped with about 20 libel suits over the years? It seems as if so many of these anti-Democrat "fake but true" stories originate with them.

Elizabeth said...

"Fox says two of its programs merely took note of what Insight had reported."

That excuse is such a reminder of the Clinton era. That's when we saw journalism tumble to its knees; instead of reporting, news outlets started using other news outlets as sources, nothing but log-rolling and blame shifting when something turned out to be false.

I was very disappointed to see Instapundit link to this "madrassa" thing last week. I'm losing respect for Reynolds. I haven't checked his site today, but as of last night, he hadn't linked to any challenge or correction to these allegations about Obama and Clinton.

Tom Hilton said...

Yup, you got it right. Now I'm looking forward to the Malkinites talking about how FNC and the WashTimes have lost all credibility.

Really. Any day now, I'm sure they'll say that.

Anonymous said...

How is it a smear to mention something that was reported elsewhere?

Fox says two of its programs merely took note of what Insight had reported.

Unlike Rathergate where Dan, acting on CBS's behalf did the investigation and reported it on CBS.

Granted I did not see the initial reporting of this on FNC (below my quota of viewing lately - I may lose my VRWC membership) or the clarification but this sounds like something mentioned on the morning talk show like so many other things they talk about that they found on the web.

Insight may be smearing but (IMO) not FNC.

As for Keith on MSNBC - I suppose if Keith knew what news and reporting was, well then maybe his comments would be useful.

Anonymous said...

It's not the Washington Times, it's their sister publication Insight. The Times is certainly conservative-slanting but still, shall we say, reality-based.

If you call a paper run by a cult leader, and self proclaimed Messiah, "reality based". They don't call it the Moonie Times for nothing.

This directly off their website:

"Look at the Washington Times. No one in America helped to create that. Without Father's guidance for the Washington Times, this country couldn't have found a direction. Literally nine hundred million to one billion dollars has been spent to activate and run the Washington Times. Did we make any part of this money and give it to Father, saying, "Father, please use this to continue the Washington Times"? The world thinks it is true that Reverend Moon really exploited young Americans by making them go out and sell flowers. The amount of money that American members raised was not even enough to support themselves with food and shelter every day. Father brought tons of money to this country to accomplish his goals. So how can they say Reverend Moon exploited the youth of this country? Because of this Father was persecuted."

Elizabeth said...

Ok, instapundit now links to corrections. That's good.

Fritz said...

From the Timesonline : "A source close to the Clinton campaign told The Times, a day before the Insight article was published, that they do not want to be seen as attacking Mr Obama or digging for dirt, but that they would be happy for another Democrat contender to criticise him."

So much for smear.

Elizabeth said...

Repeating an unsubstantiated story is a smear; it's also practicing stenography instead of journalism. Blogs should be very careful to avoid it, as most bloggers don't do any actual reporting, but instead depend on linking to other reports.

Joe said...

Why is the headmaster of the islamic school more credible than anyone else? We should take his word as gospel truth that its merely a public school?

hdhouse said...

Sloanasaurus said...
"Nevertheless, it is fair to point out that Obama's father and step father were muslims, and that Obama had this influence in his life. This is fair game. Do you want to vote for a president that was raised partially in a muslim environment? Is such a person American enough to understand America? How is that different from Hillary whose upbringing is more traditional American."

Sloanasaurus - not to put too fine a point on this, but did you actually mean this or was this some sort of massive typo? I'll give you a chance to correct it.

LoafingOaf said...

I may be confused here, possibly because I don't know what Insight Magazine is about.

Fox & Friends is a chat show - a conservative version of The View -but with some news updates from their "hard news" staff. Apparently the chit-chatters on the couch chatted about something a magazine reported. When the report lost credibility, they chatted about that too. *shrug*

Not sure why I'm supposed to do anything but chickle at someone like hdhouse praising Keith Olberman as if Keith Olberman never discusses "unverified" reports on his show ("stolen" elections, bulges on Bush's back, etc). Olberman often discusses pure rumors from the Internet that weren't even news reports in magazines.

That's fine with me, by the way. These kind of shows are places people want to see some of these things getting discussed. I might not have known for a long time whether or not Obama went to a madrassas if Insight's report had just quietly floated around the internet.

I will agree that it should have been verified. From that point of view, Fox looks just as bad as CBS did with the Rather story, at least initially.

Not sure how you work out Fox looking as bad as someone who puts a fake document on the air and then defends it day after day after the document has been shown to be fake.

That was CBS' reporting. Others talked about it after CBS aired the fake documents, and they were victims of CBS' faulty and fraudulent reporting. Chit-chat shows, bloggers, etc. When CBS' story fell apart, some of the bloggers, etc., digested this and treated the story accordingly, while some still pretended the story was accurate.

If Fox & Friends were still, at this point, discussing Insight's report as if its credibility hadn't been successfulyl challenged, they'd then be like, say, DailyKos and Keith Olbermann, trying to smear with no concern about truth. But they didn't do that.

So, IMHO, all heat should be focused on Insight magazine - the ones who published the apparently false report - despite the desire of people in this thread to smear Fox due to their political biases.

This thread has people who are apparently putting forth different standards for what news reports someone may discuss upon a story being reported.

If it's a strongly Democrat-biased news outlet - like the NY Times pulling an October Surprise on Bush about missing weapons in Iraq - then everyone is free to yap about it to their heart's content. In fact, if you aren't dicussing such a story upon its publication, you will be condemned for your silence.

If a report comes from an outlet with a different bias, however, anyone who mentions it even on a light talk show must be condemned as unethical because they hadn't proven first that there were no credibility issues with the news report.

Ridiculous.

LoafingOaf said...

Repeating an unsubstantiated story is a smear

Then you might as well shut down the blogosphere!

AJ Lynch said...

Today we each validate and verify news stories in different ways. The right trusts FOX and picks apart the MSM. The left trusts the MSM and is pissed as hell Fox dares to exist.

And each side tends to write and report on stories that fit their own worldview. For example, I saw this story in the NY Post but not in the Philly Inquirer. Why is that? Seems like a big story to me.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/01232007/news/worldnews/chilling_plot_for_9_11_ii_worldnews_andy_soltis.htm

Ghlade said...

Sloanasaurus,

From reading Senator Obama's books and listening to him speak, he seems to have a much better grasp of what it means to be an American than you are demonstrating in this thread.

Revenant said...

Is there any other way to look at it?

As Fritz noted, it seems likely that the Clinton campaign suckered the magazine into publishing a fake anti-Obama story on its behalf.

Balfegor said...

Repeating an unsubstantiated story is a smear

Then you might as well shut down the blogosphere!

Or, more generally, the AP, Reuters, and AFP, all of which pass items along to major news outlets without verification. And I'm not just talking about fishy stories sourced from Jamil Hussein here -- it runs on all sides. In the months before the invasion in 2003, for example, the AP had stories claiming that, inter alia, Turkey's border police had apprehended uranium smugglers along the Iraqi border. That's just how these news services work. There's no way they could actually verify what their stringers pass up to them -- that's why they use stringers, after all. And there's certainly no way entrenched media establishments like the Times or CNN can go and verify either -- that's why they run stuff from these wire services.

Daryl Herbert said...

Not to belabor the obvious, but the "two-for-one" meme (any time anything bad comes out about Obama, blame Hillary) is just too rich for Fox to give up. We will see this one through the end of the primaries.

Cedarford said...

Right now Obama is this woderful blank slate that liberals jaded with the usual candidates they know about can make Barack pure, perfectly aligned with them, a God walking among men, whatever they want.

It is inevitable that Hillary or his Dem rivals will seek to fill in the blank canvas. Along with Republicans and longtime pols simply irritated that a near-religious cult is springing up on a 2-year Senator who gives great speeches and whose Dads were Muslims, not mill workers.

If they miss the mark in filling in stuff on Obamas blank slate, someone will correct them. I wouldn't call it smearing.

The school appears to be called a Madrassah in Indonesia, but not one of the hate-filled Salafist types of radical Islam that is all about Koran memorization and teaching the glories of Jihad and Martyrdom. More like a public school, with supplementary Muslim religious instruction and Christian for expats there or the despised Christian minority..(Indonesian Muslims have killed 100's of thousands of Christians in the Archipelago, East Timor, and Borneo since Obama lived there. And whacked 500,000 Chinese
pagans back in 1965.)

Some observations:

1. No one has scrutinized the type of Islam his father and stepfather held. It is likely not the fanatically intolerant Salafist, Wahhabi type, but as of now, no one knows.

2. No one has written, to my knowledge, on if his mother converted to the religion of her two Muslim head of households. In fact, she has sort of been kept in the attic altogether -

3. No one has checked on the Madrassah Obama attended Muslim religious classes. The person interviewing the Headmaster should have asked to look at Obama's school records. He may be Christian now, but he may or may not have been raised Muslim...and of what type??

hdhouse said...

LoafingOaf said... "NOTHING"

Honest to God I read your post over and over and you have stumped me. If there is a point in there...well I'm reminded of the kid sorting through the manure pile on christmas morning looking for the pony.

I presume Mr. Oaf is proposing some sort of new rating system for television "news" or for that matter mass media in general:

R1 - R5 Republican maybe true to
Republican "believe not a
word"

or perhaps: RS, RJ, RL as in republican serious (kinda, jk are refinements) then RJ is republican "joking" as in can't you take a joke? and of course RL is republican light....monty python...always look on the brighter side of life comes to mind.

Then on the other hand, how about just taking it like it is:

A crappy attempt to kill two birds with one stone. Then they get caught and its, well he said it first ...

You numbnuts on the right never take the blame for anything do you...just the credit ... and then mostly when it isn't due.

Sloanasaurus said...

Repeating an unsubstantiated story is a smear; it's also practicing stenography instead of journalism

Someone above made a good point about this: During Rathergate, would it have been a smear for other news organizations to report on the memos when the only source for their authenticity was Dan Rather/CBS.

To avoid this you could just say that CBS news has reported..... Is that Clintonian?

LoafingOaf said...

Invisible Man said...
Why even respond to such a nonsensical statement as Bruce's, Ann? In Bruce's world, Hillary and other Democrats spend their nights feeding on the blood of orphans and sending love letters to Al Qaeda to boost their confidence.

You just smeared Bruce while condemning smearing. Your way of pretending you don't know Hillary Clinton has created a reputation for dirty politics and smearing and that it's reasonable to wonder what tricks she'll pull next.

It is funny, however, that right-wingers seem to never have a problem when Fox News screws up massively, but we have to listen to their Buddhist mantra of "MSM....MSM....MSM" on every blog about everything that they "suspect" doesn't fit their paradigm....

so, while posting about how concerned you are about truth and accuracy in the media, you condemn people who have exposed, for example, mis-captioned and photoshopped photographs from Reuters out of the Lebanon conflict, and bloggers who actually travel to Iraq and find that mosques the AP said had been destroyed are, amazingly, still there.

That, to you, doesn't rise to the level of a "massive news screw up," but Kiren Chetry (or whichever one it was) sitting on the couch on a light talk show mentioning she read something in Insight magazine, that is a "massive screw up" from which Fox's reputation can never recover. lol

I can see how incurious you are about inaccurate news based on your political agenda, and I cannot take your outrage at Fox seriously.

Sloanasaurus said...

Sloanasaurus - not to put too fine a point on this, but did you actually mean this or was this some sort of massive typo? I'll give you a chance to correct it.

Thanks. My point is that Hillary will find it useful to point out that she has had a more traditional "American Experience" than Obama. People don't like to vote for foreigners or strangers for president. A weakness of Obama is that he has few American virtues (a similar problem that Kerry had). He lived in a foreign country until he was 10 and then attended a prep school in Hawaii. There is overcoming of poverty in Obama's life, no military career, and no success in private life.

In addition many African Americans criticise him because he does not have an African American heritage. His ancestors were not slaves or victims of Jim Crow laws. They worry that people will assume Obama is for their issues merely because he is African American when he may not be (unlike white Presidents who have to constantly show their support).

SteveR said...

hdhouse: "Honest to God I read your post over and over and you have stumped me."

Well now you know how I feel about your posts except I don't waste time reading them "over and over."

LoafingOaf said...

hdhouse: I thought I said a few things, amongst them was how ridiculous you were to praise Keith Olberman while condemning talk shows discussing things they don't know for sure are true. It's not my fault you couldn't resist giving yourself away as a hypocrite, undermining your entire participation in this thread.

You don't wanna deal with your hypocrisy, so feel free to make personal attacks on me. I'm just a loafing oaf and advertise myself as such, whereas you have impressed me as a really clever one with that "faux news" talking point. *yawn*

MadisonMan said...

To avoid this you could just say that CBS news has reported..... Is that Clintonian?

It is factual reporting. Whether or not it's Clintonian is an exercise left to the reader.

Anonymous said...

If you didn't think FOX has a live link to the WH, this should make you think again.

Anonymous said...

During Rathergate, would it have been a smear for other news organizations to report on the memos when the only source for their authenticity was Dan Rather/CBS. To avoid this you could just say that CBS news has reported..... Is that Clintonian?

In the olden days, say 10 years ago, a respectable news source would never republish an allegation made as a result of another news source's investigation unless they could verify it themselves. If you report it, you're standing behind it. If it turns out to be false, you can't hide behind the "all we did is report what the other guys said" defense. An editor is responsible for what appears in his or her paper or on the air; you couldn't offload that responsibility to an editor for a rival news source.

If it was dirt on a candidate that the opposing candidate was trying to spread, the only way the dirt-dealer could get the story into the general media was by inducing their opponent somehow to respond to it. "Mr. Candidate, it's been reported that you're a boodler. Care to comment?" If the alleged boodler commented, the comment was a fair way to bootstrap the allegation into other news outlets. That's why flacks try to avoid commenting on these sorts of things.

But that was the olden days. Now rumors are news. Editors use the justification that anybody on the planet is talking about it, thus requiring them to repeat it. One is forced to admit that this is a downside of the blogosphere, because the rumors now spread so quickly, it's understandable that an editor would figure at some point they had to run with it, just to avoid looking dense.

Joe said...

This just presents an opportunity for the FOX news haters - those who don't believe the Right should have ANY media voice - to bash away to their heart's content.
At the very least, the story gave us a welcome break from the non-stop, unqualified fawning over Obama by the rest of the media.

Slim Tyranny said...

Sloanasaurus said: A weakness of Obama is that he has few American virtues (a similar problem that Kerry had). He lived in a foreign country until he was 10 and then attended a prep school in Hawaii. There is overcoming of poverty in Obama's life, no military career, and no success in private life.

What a load of BS. From Wikipedia:

"After high school, Obama studied for two years at Occidental College in California and then transferred to Columbia University where he majored in political science with a specialization in international relations. After receiving his Bachelors of Arts degree in 1983, Obama worked for one year at Business International Corporation. In 1985, he moved to Chicago to direct a non-profit project assisting local churches to organize job training programs for residents of poor neighborhoods.

Obama entered Harvard Law School in 1988. In February 1990, he gained national recognition for becoming the first African American to be elected president of the Harvard Law Review. He obtained his Juris Doctor degree magna cum laude from Harvard in 1991. On returning to Chicago, Obama directed a voter registration drive, then worked for the civil rights law firm Miner, Barnhill & Galland, and taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School from 1993 until his election to the U.S. Senate in 2004."

No success in private life? This guy has done more than most Americans (and no doubt more than you). He worked at a non-profit, attended a prestigious law school and served in his state senate.

You can hate him all you want because of his politics, but don't lie about his accomplishments.

SteveR said...

Slim: BS call on your BS call.

Obama is accomplished and has a good background in education and public service. But where's the business he started or managed? Career in "private" industry? You really have to stretch to read it your way.

Those of us who been in both types of environments recognize that private sector work requires certain skills and gives certain experiences, that being in school or working for public entities can never provide. In that regard its a point against him.

Slim Tyranny said...

Sorry, Steve, you're just plain wrong. My BS call was on point and perfect --- to say the man has "no success in private life" is a joke. His private life is filled with family and personal accomplishments of an extraordinary nature.

Perhaps you think "success in private life" means solely "success in the private sector." That reading is inaccurate to begin with, but that aside, I love that you ask "but where's the business he started or managed?"

Of course! Because it's a killer blow to this man's credentials that he never started his own enterprise! Now, you would think that the leadership skills of "management" could be found when he directed a non-profit, but I guess it just doesn't count.

As for private sector work, I guess we also have to pretend that his work at the law firm Miner, Barnhill somehow doesn't count. Good stuff.

Slim Tyranny said...

Sorry, Steve, you're just plain wrong. My BS call was on point and perfect --- to say the man has "no success in private life" is a joke. His private life is filled with family and personal accomplishments of an extraordinary nature.

Perhaps you think "success in private life" means solely "success in the private sector." That reading is inaccurate to begin with, but that aside, I love that you ask "but where's the business he started or managed?"

Of course! Because it's a killer blow to this man's credentials that he never started his own enterprise! Now, you would think that the leadership skills of "management" could be found when he directed a non-profit, but I guess it just doesn't count.

As for private sector work, I guess we also have to pretend that his work at the law firm Miner, Barnhill somehow doesn't count. Good stuff.

Sloanasaurus said...

This guy has done more than most Americans...He worked at a non-profit, attended a prestigious law school and served in his state senate.

Wait, is this enough for you? What big law case has Obama won. What organization has he lead to success. What can he point to that says "I was a leader there, so you should be assured that I will be a leader here." The answers to this are none.

My point is that Hillary will not let us forget these deficiencies.

Slim Tyranny said...

Sloanasaurus says:
Wait, is this enough for you? What big law case has Obama won. What organization has he lead to success. What can he point to that says "I was a leader there, so you should be assured that I will be a leader here." The answers to this are none.

Well, first, admit you played down and lied about Obama's accomplishments in your previous post.

Second of all, I didn't realize that Obama needs to have won a "big law case" before you'll be impressed.

Third of all, you need to actually read what I posted. You ask "what organization has he lead to success". Given that I told you he was the director of a non-profit in Chicago, maybe you could have put 2 and 2 together.

And in the end, listen to yourself! You lie about his accomplishments, dismiss them as nothing, and then when that is clearly disproven, you try a different tactic! How about, once again, recognizing his accomplishments and then opposing him on his politics.

Glenn said...

Elizabeth writes:

"I was very disappointed to see Instapundit link to this 'madrassa' thing last week. I'm losing respect for Reynolds. I haven't checked his site today, but as of last night, he hadn't linked to any challenge or correction to these allegations about Obama and Clinton."

Actually, I never linked the original story, but did link the correction, yesterday afternoon. You might try to be more careful, if you're going to accuse people of circulating unsubstantiated reports.

SteveR said...

Slim: You're either stupid or blindly partisan, and perhaps both.

I know what Sloan meant by "private life" and its not what he does behind closed doors or at dinner parties. You chose to wrongly interpret that, get outraged because you did not read it right and instead of addressing the problem, you then choose to attack me and miss the point even more.

Go back to the beginning and start again.

Revenant said...

This guy has done more than most Americans (and no doubt more than you).

That's nice, but he's not trying to convince voters he's more qualified than they are. He's trying to convince them he's more qualified than any of the other candidates. And while his accomplishments are impressive compared to Americans as a whole, they're distinctly mediocre compared to other national politicians.

He worked at a non-profit, attended a prestigious law school and served in his state senate

That's the Democratic national politics equivalent of a high school diploma, though.

Slim Tyranny said...

Sorry, SteveR, you're wrong again. Sloanasaurus was clearly talking about Obama's personal life. Thus the reference to where he grew up, how he went to a prep school, how he didn't have to overcome poverty and how he generally does not embody American virtues (clearly false).

You, too, seem to be unable to recognize his accomplishments. I notice you failed to acknowledge that, contrary to your posting, Obama does, in fact, have private sector experience. I guess easier for you to ignore.

Revenant --- to call Obama's accomplishments "distinctly mediocre" compared to other national politicians is hilariously false. From his non-profit work, to his Harvard Law accomplishments, to his private law firm work, to his work in the state senate, to his service so far in the U.S. Senate, his performance has been anything but mediocre.

In the end, you guys are the same. Rather than recognize the accomplishments at all, you will dismiss them entirely. He has "done nothing." He has had "no success in private life." His accomplishments are "mediocre."

You'd be taken more seriously if you just accepted that the man has done very well in life, both in terms of personal accomplishments and in terms of public service. Then we can talk about his politics. His politics are, of course, why you are trying to belittle his accomplishments in the first place. Let's bypass that step.

SteveR said...

I see I was right in my first evaluation, Slim.

And BTW, have I belittled him in any way? Why do you assume I am against him? I'd love to see him win the Democratic nomination, I hope he does. But he has to be prepared to address his lack of experience, my treatment of him here, is nothing like he'll get from Hillary, et al.

Revenant said...

Revenant --- to call Obama's accomplishments "distinctly mediocre" compared to other national politicians is hilariously false.

Since you persist in being ignorant, I will belabor the obvious: the last four Democratic nominees ALL had Ivy-league educations, law degrees, volunteer work, and state government experience. Its nothing special at that level of politics. What those four people had that Obama doesn't was actual executive and legislative goverment experience at the national level.

Besides, if you want to work yourself into a froth over the creamy awesomeness of Obama's credentials, take a glance, at, say, Russ Feingold -- not merely a Harvard Law graduate, but but an Oxford graduate too. He followed that up with six years as a practicing attorney, ten years as a state senator, and 14 years as a US Senator, during which time he's pushed through major (though in my opinion as a non-Democrat deeply misguided and unconstitutional) campaign-finance reform bearing his name. In short, he's Obama, only smarter and much more experienced.

Then there's Richardson -- again, law degree from a top school, 14 years in Congress, plus service as an ambassador, a Clinton cabinet member, and now governor of New Mexico. Obama's going to measure up to this guy, accomplishments-wise? Please!

The list goes on and on, really. Obama's elite, but among the elite he's (a) a newbie and (b) nothing special. He's running against a crowd of people who can look back fondly on when they had his level of education and accomplishments... you know, like in the 70s or 80s.

dix said...

Slim T, snarkiness aside, has a point. What has Hillary accomplished that makes Obama pale in comparison? As an aside, I thought it was sexist to refer to men by their last name but women by their first, but I digress.

Both are too liberal for me but that aside I lean toward someone with executive experience either as governor or even in the private sector.

From his non-profit work, to his Harvard Law accomplishments, to his private law firm work, to his work in the state senate, to his service so far in the U.S. Senate, his performance has been anything but mediocre.

Was he able to increase income for the nonprofit? Any significant cases at the law firm? Any major legislation initiated and pushed through in either state or US Senate? I'm not saying he hasn't accomplished these things but they would be indicators of ability in an executive position.

Anonymous said...

I'm expecting Michelle Malkin to get to the bottom of this.

The Exalted said...

Slim Tyranny is missing Obama's "private life" endeavour in his own post that you wingers are clamoring for: He taught Con Law at the U of Chicago Law School for a decade. I'd say reaching the mountain top of legal academia is achieving success in private life. Or does teaching not count either? Probably news to Ms. Althouse.

Also, I remember in 2000 the media, looking desperately for signs of W's leadership skills, repeatedly pointed out that he was president of his college fraternity. I'd say Obama's presidency of Harvard Law Review trumps that, and likely anything you've done in your professional or academic lives.

I like that a blatant Fox smear that even Ms. Althouse notices leads to criticism by the wingers here of ... the non Fox MSM and Hillary Clinton. Priceless.

Cheers.

Cedarford said...

Slim tyranny - You appear to be an Obama worshipper and you cite his elite education and community activism as proof he is accomplished enough to be President. Yes he established a non-profit, but that is what every activist lawyer does and appoints him or herself Director so they can get paid with the government or charity money coming in. (Some, like Jesse and Al, get paid very, very well.)

Others are trying to tell you that the American voter tend to look for leadership and executive experience in a candidate. And be sure that a Biden or a HRH or Richardson will point out to the voters the paucity of Obama's executive experience, lack of private sector or military experience in an executive capacity, lack of work in any government executive capacity or foreign policy - no distinguished track record in previous government service.

Yes he talks very well. Better than Edwards..Yes he is intelligent - almost as smart as the Lizard Queen. Barack may be God to you, but his credentials are almost as thin as Al Sharpton, Pat Robertsons.

But his only real executive experience was in a storefront community center, aside from his being head of an academic review. His 6 years in Illinois State legislature were liberal years, but with no leadership role or authorship of any major legislation or role in initiating or helping major legislation along. And his 2 years in the US Senate...

Slim Tyranny said...

Cmon SteveR, at least acknowledge you were wrong about Obama having no private sector experience. It's not hard.

As for Revenant, Obama's creds are not mediocre at all. If you compared Bush's pre-presidential accomplishments to Obama's, Obama's are clearly more impressive.

Yes, Russ Feingold's accomplishments are also impressive. They don't, however, make Obama's "mediocre." Certainly not "nothing special."

Final note: I don't believe Richardson has a law degree; he has a masters from Tufts.

hdhouse said...

No real accomplishments????

Why he was president of a huge oil company. Unfortunately he drilled in the mid-east and didn't find any oil. talk about a million to one shot. Then he owned a baseball team. Traded some superstar who was difficult and that didn't pan out too well. Oh did I forget fighter pilot? War hero?

Obama? No? Yes. Well never mind.

Slim Tyranny said...

Cedarford, I am not an "Obama worshipper." I am merely honest about his accomplishments. Just find it hilarious to read people downplay his creds and lie about his work and political experience.

Very funny to read your thought that he just made himself the "Director" of a non-profit he established (I never said he established it, not sure either way) --- just so he can make money off it.

Leadership experience is important. Obama has no political executive level experience, just legislative. He does have leadership experience from his non-profit.

How do you conclude that he has "no distinguished track record in previous government service"?

"Lizard Queen"? Funny. Why take you seriously at all?

And your other comments are dishonest. "His 6 years in Illinois State legislature were liberal years, but with no leadership role or authorship of any major legislation or role in initiating or helping major legislation along" --- not particularly true.

Wikipedia: "chairman of the [Illinois state] Senate Health and Human Services Committee. Among his legislative initiatives, Obama helped to author an Illinois Earned Income Tax Credit that provided benefits to lower income families, worked for legislation that would support residents who could not afford health insurance, and helped pass bills to increase funding for AIDS prevention and care programs." You can go to Wikipedia to read about the hundreds of Senate bills he has cosponsored.

You are probably asking yourself: WHY IS SLIM DEFENDING HIS HERO, OBAMA, SO MUCH?

1. He is not my hero.
2. I feel it worthy, however, to defend the accomplishments of this man when I read smears about his unAmerican life and his "mediocre", "do nothing" life experience.
3. I ask you this question: Why belittle him? Why not just be honest about disagreeing with his politics?

Slim Tyranny said...

One final point, Cedarford, because you are confused: "You appear to be an Obama worshipper and you cite his elite education and community activism as proof he is accomplished enough to be President."

I don't cite his elite education and community activism to make the case that he is accomplished enough to be President (though you did leave out his private law firm work, his law school teaching, his state senate experience and his U.S. Senate experience). I cite those accomplishments to counter the dishonest commenters who say he has accomplished nothing. That he is thoroughly unimpressive. That he is unamerican. That he had no success in private life. Those are lies.

Again, those are lies. Why should I let those stand? Why do you dismiss me as merely hero-worshipping in defending this man?

Revenant said...

What has Hillary accomplished that makes Obama pale in comparison?

Not much, really; neither of them has much real experience to think of. Hillary is presumably hoping to be given credit for her years as first lady. Even though she hasn't been *doing* much, she's been in the political spotlight since 1989.

Exalted,

He taught Con Law at the U of Chicago Law School for a decade. I'd say reaching the mountain top of legal academia is achieving success in private life

Lecturers aren't the "mountain top" of academia. They just teach; to the best of my knowledge they don't have tenure and don't do research. Basically, he taught classes to grad students.

Again, this is perhaps impressive in some abstract sense, but how's it going to impress voters? You can bet your ass that Hillary's going to talk about some high-profile task that she was involved in, like health care reform or defending Bill from the VRWC, while Obama was shut up in some classroom somewhere in Chicago.

They're running for President, remember, not head of the school board. People tend to vote for people they perceive to be leaders, not people they perceive to be really smart -- e.g., Bush/Gore and Bush/Kerry.

Elizabeth said...

Glenn, I'm guilty of doing exactly what I complained about. I can only offer my apology.

Elizabeth said...

johnstodder explains the problem best. First, I haven't bought into the idea that blogs are a new kind of journalism, or rather a replacement or big improvement on journalism. Most bloggers aren't covering a beat, and actually reporting. Some do, but they're exceptions. Journalism is suffering from its own self-inflicted wounds. jstodder is exactly right that x many years ago (is it always 10?), no major media outlet would simply repeat another media outlet's story without confirming it with their own sources. Sometime during the 90s it became acceptable to cite another news media outlet as a source, and I think it's a factor in the decline of the reliability of our news media.

SteveR said...

Slim, I may have missed the point but you're not even in the solar system. What about his "accomplishments" sets him apart, and many will say nothing. Most of his competitors have that or more. Hillary has a huge organization behind her and several decades of experience spinning and ducking. So beyond force of personality and a neat story, where's the beef?

So get past looking at me and answer that. Gary Hart, Ross Perot, Howard Dean, etc.

Balfegor said...

Re: Revenant

the last four Democratic nominees ALL had Ivy-league educations, law degrees

Gore didn't have a law degree, as far as I know. He dropped out (or flunked out) of Vanderbilt. Also unlike Obama, whose law degree is from Harvard, Kerry's law degree is from a respectable but second tier school. He may not outclass Clinton on paper, but he certainly outclasses either Kerry or Gore. Well, leaving aside that they'd both had longer careers in the Senate, and in the case of Gore, as VP too.

Anonymous said...

I am surprised that anyone cares about where a Presidential candidate went to college. I couldn't care less about what someone did at eighteen. Tell me what the person has accomplished as an adult--and by that, I don't mean a list of positions from a resume. Tell me about the person's ability to execute his vision, tell me about quantifiable outcomes, tell me about decisive moments that resulted in victory.

Those are the things that reveal leadership in a man's character.

Revenant said...

Sometime during the 90s it became acceptable to cite another news media outlet as a source, and I think it's a factor in the decline of the reliability of our news media

It became acceptable during the mid-19th century, actually, and has remained so ever since. After all -- what is republication of a wire service story, if not "citing another news outlet as a source"? The papers reprint an article without knowing the first thing about how it was researched or what the sources for it were.

Trusting that a news magazine got the story right isn't any stranger or less ethical than trusting that some stringer for Reuters got the story right.

Anonymous said...

I think Fox was getting in a jab. Two for one. We notice it because it is rare, like albino Africans. Not that it is rare on Fox (I really do not know if it is rare on Fox or not,) but rare everywhere else.

Before I get to considering character issues, I look at the candidate's stand on political issues. Since I disagree with Obama's politics, I do not need to consider his character. But using drugs in the 80s or being enrolled in Osama Grade School and Little Terrorist Training camp at 8 are not on my radar of character issues.

Trey