March 12, 2008

"The Obama campaign is attacking me to hurt you. I won't let that happen," says Geraldine Ferraro.

And she steps down from her position on the finance committee of the Clinton campaign.

The Obama campaign is attacking me to hurt you. I won't let that happen. Come on, that's hilarious! She plays Hillary's surrogate and makes an attack that Hillary can't do directly, then cries foul when she's attacked as if it's some underhanded way to get at Hillary? She deserved the attack, and it was perfectly appropriate to attack her as a way to attack Hillary.

But it's interesting the way Obama and Hillary are attacking each other through surrogates and retaliating by expressions of outrage that force the elimination of each other's surrogates. I wonder how many rounds of that we're expected to watch before we see it as a childish game.

ADDED: Olbermann unleashes one of his word torrents on Hillary and Geraldine. Tiny excerpt:
In your tepid response to this Ferraro disaster, you may sincerely think you are disenthralling an enchanted media, and righting an unfair advance bestowed on Senator Obama.... Senator Clinton: This is not a campaign strategy. This is a suicide pact.... This, Senator Clinton, is your campaign, and it is your name. Grab the reins back from whoever has led you to this precipice, before it is too late. Voluntarily or inadvertently, you are still awash in this filth.... You must remedy this. And you must… reject… and denounce… Geraldine Ferraro.
AND: Hillary tries to do one of those "apology" things: "I want to put that in context. You know I am sorry if anyone was offended. It was certainly not meant in any way to be offensive. We can be proud of both Jesse Jackson and Senator Obama." Oh, man, is she stepping right back in it! A non-apology — sorry if you were offended — and then the patronizing "proud of" — it's how you feel about your children — and the unnecessary relinkage with Jesse Jackson. Remember Bill's South Carolina remark? That was widely viewed as playing the race card, so she's restimulating racial thoughts. If she thinks this statement will effectively distance herself from Ferraro's remark, she has very poor judgment.

54 comments:

rhhardin said...

It's not childish, but just respectful of what has legs in the media.

There are very few stories that will be acceptable.

It's not children that are watching, but certain adults.

Let's look at a page of MSNBC reporters for a clue.

Tim said...

.
.
.
.
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Pawns.

Most of the time they're just inanimate objects on a board game in black and white.

Here, they're still black and white (or at least their teams are), but they're willing players.

Hard to feel sorry for them.

Still love the Blue on Blue, though. Good for McCain, good for America.

Middle Class Guy said...

Geeraldine Ferraro is a liar, a hypocrite, and by the far left's definition, a racist.

This is not the first time she has made a racially charged statement. This is from Politico:

Who cares what Ferraro says? Especially since, as Frank James of the Chicago Tribune points out, in 1988 Ferraro said the same thing about Jesse Jackson. “If Jesse Jackson were not black, he wouldn’t be in the race,” Ferraro said back then.


Gee, sounds word for word what she said about Obama.

ricpic said...

No matter how PC she tried to be, Ferraro couldn't suppress a truth eruption welling up from her call a spade a spade Italian essence.

Henry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Henry said...

It seems like Obama and Hillary (and their surrogates) are doing to racial identity politics what Bill and Hillary (and their surrogates) did to feminist identity politics.

That's the silver lining.

Ann Althouse said...

How is she a hypocrite? She said the equivalent thing about her own nomination as VP.

Middle Class Guy said...

Ann Althouse said...
How is she a hypocrite? She said the equivalent thing about her own nomination as VP.

I take the hypocrite part back.

Paul said...

Of course she's right. Identity politics dominates the left. The black columnist in the LA Times who referred to BHO as a "magic Negro" nailed it. It's delightful to watch the left's identity politics and politically correct racism reach around and kick the Democrats in the ass.

Mortimer Brezny said...

How is she a hypocrite? She said the equivalent thing about her own nomination as VP.

Well. Ferraro was picked by Mondale after Mondale won the nomination. She was an affirmative action hire. Obama has won more states, more delegates, and more of the popular vote than Hillary Clinton because he is running a better campaign. He's winning on merit.

Ferraro may not be a hypocrite, but apparently she didn't do very well on the analogies section of the SATs.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Maybe Ms. Ferraro is like the Guy from Boston... and other cities around the U.S.of A.

"I'm just saying what you are thinkin' " (not my statement)... but it's his and it does resonate around the country ...like it or not.

People are not fundamentally not politically correct. Waddya gonna do?
http://www.theguyfromboston.com/video_menu.asp

Geraldine Ferraro made an accurate comment and is taken to task as racist. Maybe she is. But in the future as it is now, any slightest criticism of Obama is going to be slapped in the face with the racism card. Get used to it. No such thing as free speech for "thee and me" all in the name of political correctness.

former law student said...

Ferraro allowed herself to be misquoted in a telephone interview with the Torrance Daily Breeze ("The story that started it all") I don't know what she said later on TV, but it may just have been damage control.

http://www.dailybreeze.com/ci_8489268

When the subject turned to Obama, Clinton's rival for the Democratic Party nomination, Ferraro's comments took on a decidedly bitter edge.

"I think what America feels about a woman becoming president takes a very secondary place to Obama's campaign - to a kind of campaign that it would be hard for anyone to run against," she said. "For one thing, you have the press, which has been uniquely hard on her. It's been a very sexist media. Some just don't like her. The others have gotten caught up in the Obama campaign.

"If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position," she continued. "And if he was a woman (of any color) he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept." Ferraro does not buy the notion of Obama as the great reconciler.

Eli Blake said...

Rarely do I believe that mortimer hits the nail on the head but in this case he does.

There is absolutely no comparison between Ferraro's "affirmative action" selection in 1984 and Obama's situation today.

Ferraro and her backers had to convince one person-- Walter Mondale, that she should be on the ticket. She didn't have to run for anything, didn't have to campaign, just got picked.

Obama, in contrast, is where he is because more Democratic primary voters have wanted him than have wanted Ferraro's candidate. He started way behind her, too-- so he's got where he is by doing the hard work of earning all those votes.

Perhaps Ms. Ferraro may want to contemplate whether it would be more appropriate to compare her situation to Hillary Clinton's-- she took the voters for granted, carefully selected her Senate positions with an eye to winning a general election while forgetting that she had to win a Democratic primary first, pretty much didn't bother to set up an organization in any state that voted after Super Tuesday and that has less than 20 electoral votes, amd clearly felt that we in the party owed her something.

We owe her nothing. Any goodwill she had she squandered by voting too much like Joe Lieberman on matters that are important to Democrats.

As one of millions of people across the nation who has cast a vote for Barack Obama this year, I resent the implication by Ms. Ferraro that my vote was tied to Mr. Obama's race. I don't give a flying leap about what color he is, I care about having a President I can believe in.

Mortimer Brezny said...

Perhaps it might rankle, but Obama should simply be straightforward and say he is winning on merit, while Hillary Clinton wants to use affirmative action to drag herself across the finish line.

Cedarford said...

The Mort and Eli guilty white liberal show ignores that much of Obama's "achievements" to even get before voters and an adulatory press was predicated on his getting special favors on affirmative action bonus points.

His scholarship to Hawaii's most exclusive school, his transfer to an Ivy League college after getting his grades up in two years in a transfer college. Then Harvard Law when a white with his record wouldn't have gotten in. His having various powerful people at Harvard "push" for the 1st Black Editor of the Law review, followed by Harvard's running the full PR campaign to show off how progressive they were with a black wunderkund at the helm.
His academic pedigree then won him a choice selection of "black superstar" spots at America's most prestigious law firms.
And he swiftly got billionaire Jewish mentors in Chicago and Hollywood financially bankrolling "our black who is destined for greatness". Then as a black, got the miracle of the Keynote Speaker at the National Democratic Convention placed in his lap by people bowled over by the "articulateness" of this new prospect enough that they threw out he held no National office and had no great accomplishment in the military, Government, or private sector prior to being groomed as the Convention Superstar.

Then the Rock Star Senator Era, when he could do no wrong.

If he was white or female of any race, none or most of all that affirmative action would have ever happened.

Ferraro's analogy is hardly misplaced.

Add in that the media gushed over Obama, the Black Messiah they had waited for and about who no hard-hitting jouralists need apply with a negative video loop or article to their Editor.
While freely bashing the other candidates and lapping up each use of the race card by the Obama camp as the gospel truth, because a black with High Moral Authority would never use race to gain advantage...No, the media narrative was prewritten on how he championed an entire race and more beyond them. How he would then transcend race and lead them all to the New Canaan of Hope.

And his Oct 2, 2002 Great Speech that the media celebrates as proof of his genius and superior judgment was simply one of thousands of Lefty speeches delivered from San Fran to Russia to the Muslim World. With folks like Putin, Jacques de Villepin, Tariq Aziz, Saddam himself, nearly every Muslim leader saying the same basic things Obama said.

But the media embraced the Great Speech uncritically and kept any context of why he said it not knowing the facts, who he said it to (ex SDS members, old 60s war protestors), away from voters. Or the fact that he backed away from his Great Speech as soon as he was in the Senate. Or which other Americans and folks overseas like Saddam and Putin and Ayman Al-Zawahiri were giving similar speeches of "Superior Judgment"

Mortimer Brezny said...

Cedarford,

Yes, Obama was black in kindergarten. And shame on him.

AllenS said...

People like to call other people racist, because it gives them a brief feeling of moral superiority. It has happened all too often on this very blog, let alone, in daily life. Not to mention in front of a camera/reporter.

Paul said...

Wow Mortimer that was the weakest retort ever. Pathetic.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Still waiting for those nasty, evil, diabolical Republican attacks on Obama.

Maybe none will happen because those liberal, progressive democrats have used all the good material.

Keep it up guys. I can't pay for this kind of entertainment.

Fen said...

It's delightful to watch the left's identity politics and politically correct racism reach around and kick the Democrats in the ass.

*passes popcorn*

Landmines they are blind to.

George said...

Criticism is not permitted. It weakens the unity. How can we be together all as one if voices are hurting the good feelings.

This is going to be and is one of Obama's primary raps. Like talking points. I don't mean "rap" in a musical or crime report way.

Every day from now one someone is going to get in trouble for innocently or not so innocently somehow mentioning race, his race, horse races, or any sort of race. He will use these missteps--real or imagined--to heighten feelings of guilt and suppress dissent.

I've lived in three dictatorships. All the stores have big framed photos of the maximum leader/king/general behind the cash registers. His pictures are in the streets on posters, and his smiling face is in the schools. Songs are sung to him. Songs of praise.

Finally, amusingly, yesterday NPR, in a story on the PA primary, asked a reporter if race would play a role in the decision-making of white voters there. Mumble, mumble. Yes, it would. NPR did not ask if race would play a role in how black Pennsylvanian's voted.

David said...

Ferraro had built quite a good reputation for herself. The charge of a racism that she has been stuck with is a serious one that will undo most of it. Yet the idea that Ferraro is racist is absurd and her comments offer no evidence to the charge. Spunky yes, racist no. I think she is correct to try to recover her reputation and that the Obama campaign did not show her the respect a former VP nominee deserves. She seems to be almost entirely in the right on this matter.

John said...

Cedarford,

I don't know the ins and outs of his grades getting into college or law school, so I can't address most of your points.

I can say this, though. BHO was a year ahead of me in law school. He graduated magna cum laude. Less than 10% of the class made that (I didn't). And that was the result of blind graded anonymous tests. Being black may have helped him get HLR presidency, it didn't help his grades.

I got 1520 SATs, perfect LSAT. Since graduating I've been teaching at Harvard and MIT. I like to think of myself as smart. BHO has proven himself decisively smarter than me. Maybe even smarter than you.

I'm not going to vote for the guy, I will be delighted to pull the lever for McCain (not that it will matter here in MA). But give it up for Obama, the sumbitch is smart.

And as far as getting HLR prez, you can't look at that without considering his interpersonal skills, which are awesome. he has always been a politician (when people disagreed violently in class he would always manage to agree with both of them). And he has a fair bit of BS in his rap. But he has real negotiation and conversation skills.

A lot of conservative love the guy. One of my roomies -- total arch conservative -- was on law review with him, and said he was a totally great guy. I think one of the reasons is that he treats everyone with respect and consideration. he treats conservatives as friends he disagrees with, not as satanic enemies like Hillary and most of the left do. And that matters a lot. Worth considering when you choose how to go after him. BHO kills you with kindness. I think McCain sees this and is being careful about how to get negative on him.

Net: If you are opposed to his policies, like I am, do NOT take this guy lightly.

titusstagleap said...

I woke up with a ranging hardon

MadisonMan said...

I blame the foolish voters of Ohio who put the hot air back in Hillary!'s campaign.

MadisonMan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MadisonMan said...

titus: is a ranging hardon a threat to your neighbors?

I'll add that I don't blame the voters of Ohio for your tumescent quality.

titusstagleap said...

A known fact fellow republicans.

Geraldine represents Archie Bunkers district in Queens.

Coinky Dinky?

I don't think so.

Toby said...

I understand that what she said was poor politics and considered poor form in many circles, but as a matter of simple electoral math, wasn't Ferraro right? Obama's pulling 85% to 90% of the black vote. Given the inroads the Clintons had in the African-American community, it would have been practically impossible for anyone but a member of that community to pull those sorts of numbers. If he didn't have such a high level of support from the black community, he wouldn't be in the lead, and would probably be out of the race by now.

And isn't a huge part of Obama's appeal that he is black. He's viewed as the candidate that overcomes our country's racial divisions and promotes racial healing (simply through his viable candidacy) in a way no white person could.

Again, I get that practical objections to what Ferraro said. But she didn't say that his race is the only reason for his success. She said, in effect, that it is one of the essential aspects of his candidacy, without which he would not be where he is today. Fair enough, I think.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I woke up with a ranging hardon

Does it sound like a gong or is it more like a wind chime?

Yet the idea that Ferraro is racist is absurd and her comments offer no evidence to the charge

Of course not but then again that is pretty much the playing field that the liberal left has established. Lets face it, when Harvard professors can say Hillary's 3am commerical is racist, Ferraro's comment is practically out of the KKK handbook. The fact that she's shocked shocked that anyone would deem such a comment racist simply shows how completely out of touch the Dems are.

George said...

Speaking of professors, yesterday when NPR went to get reaction to the Ferraro statement, who did it interview?

Two professors....of law...husband and wife...one for Obama, the other for Clinton...both campaign workers...both teaching at Berkeley.

Abject shame and sputtering was heard.

MadisonMan said...

Given the inroads the Clintons had in the African-American community, it would have been practically impossible for anyone but a member of that community to pull those sorts of numbers. If he didn't have such a high level of support from the black community, he wouldn't be in the lead, and would probably be out of the race by now.

Let's say Obama was not in the race. And Hillary won because she got so much of the black vote. Is she therefore racist?

Is John McCain classist because he appeals to the rich voters who want less taxes?

I find the argument that x is y because they appeal to the z voters absurd. Politicians craft their appeal by seeing which special interest groups are most congruent with their core beliefs. (Unless you're a Romney, in which case you shift your core beliefs, but I digress -- bad for a law prof!) Then they sell themselves to those groups. Not because they're racist, or classist, but because they're lazy and that's the most efficient way to get votes.

titusstagleap said...

If Obama was white he would be Robert Kennedy.

He was not leading when he began his campaign.

If he was white, hot, young, articulate, inspirational, excellent speaker, slim he would of already put Hillary Clinton away.

Yes, he has solidified the black base of the democrat party but he has also brought whites into his orbit. The rich, fabulous, educated democrats-i.e. me.

Joan of Argghh! said...

BHO may kill you with kindness, but he'll kill me with taxes. And so will HRC and McCain. Sigh. (And I'm not rich, MadisonMan.)

Oh, and someone get a memo to Barack's wife, please, because if BHO isn't the "angry black man" it could be because his wife is just taking up all the angry in the room.

Balfegor said...

Let's say Obama was not in the race. And Hillary won because she got so much of the black vote. Is she therefore racist?

I suspect she would be using a lot of racial triggers, if not playing to outright racism in the Black community (which, being hyper-White, it would be hard for her to do). Certainly against John Edwards, or another politician with a pronounced Southern accent, that's what she'd be doing. And against McCain, she or her surrogates would/will be slipping in sly references to McCain's great-great-grandfather (his last male ancestor not named John Sidney McCain!), who was in the Confederate cavalry and owned slaves.

Democratic politicians regularly rely on racial fear-mongering to get African-American voters to the polls to vote for them. That's not as bad as outright racism, to be sure, but it's not healthy for the body politic.

Balfegor said...

If Obama was white he would be Robert Kennedy.

He was not leading when he began his campaign.

If he was white, hot, young, articulate, inspirational, excellent speaker, slim he would of already put Hillary Clinton away.


I don't think this is quite right. That might be true of a Kennedy thirty years ago, but nowadays, I don't think someone like that would get nearly as far -- their name still counts for something, but a bit of the luster has come off, now that it's just Ted Kennedy on the national scene. And a White non-Kennedy with his kind of posh background -- prep school to the Ivy league to the Ivy league -- certainly wouldn't be able to seize the lead nowadays without laying down a lot more foundation. It would have to be someone like John Edwards, who can claim he was born in a barn and raised in a shoe or whatever.

garage mahal said...

So Hillary dispatched a 70 yr old surrogate to a speaking event in a tiny town somewhere to give a speech, and wait for a question to attack Obama's race.

Got it. You've been reading too many pants shitting tirades from Andy Sullivan.

MadisonMan said...

And against McCain, she or her surrogates would/will be slipping in sly references to McCain's great-great-grandfather (his last male ancestor not named John Sidney McCain!), who was in the Confederate cavalry and owned slaves.

It baffles me that someone would take a statement like that seriously. As if, in America, the accomplishments or sins of a forefather mean more than diddly squat.

knoxwhirled said...

We can be proud of both Jesse Jackson and Senator Obama.

This one made me cringe. I mean, my ears are still ranging.

Hoosier Daddy said...

As if, in America, the accomplishments or sins of a forefather mean more than diddly squat.

Tell that to the proponents of slavery reparations.

Balfegor said...

It baffles me that someone would take a statement like that seriously. As if, in America, the accomplishments or sins of a forefather mean more than diddly squat.

Perhaps in your America. McCain wrote an entire book about the glory of his lineage (glossing over the bit with the slaves, of course). Bill Frist, or someone in his family, did the same thing. Obama wrote an entire book about his father and his ancestry too.

Zeb Quinn said...

Ann said first: She deserved the attack

Then she said: How is she a hypocrite? She said the equivalent thing about her own nomination as VP.

While I'm agreeing that Ferraro was a fair target, but I'm not getting the "deserved" part. Clint Eastwood notwithstanding, and assuming deserving's indeed has got something to do with it, how did Ferraro "deserve" to get attacked?

Crimso said...

"And isn't a huge part of Obama's appeal that he is black. He's viewed as the candidate that overcomes our country's racial divisions and promotes racial healing (simply through his viable candidacy) in a way no white person could."

He's every bit as much white as he is black, but people consistently ignore this fact.

"And against McCain, she or her surrogates would/will be slipping in sly references to McCain's great-great-grandfather (his last male ancestor not named John Sidney McCain!), who was in the Confederate cavalry and owned slaves."

Makes one wonder who is behind the campaign to have Obama labeled as Muslim.

Balfegor said...

It baffles me that someone would take a statement like that seriously. As if, in America, the accomplishments or sins of a forefather mean more than diddly squat.

You know, the more I think about this, the more obviously wrong it becomes. Look at societies like the Daughters of the American Revolution and the United Daughters of the Confederacy. Look at the case of Dr. Samuel Mudd, whose grandson, with splendid filiality, sought to clear the good name of his grandfather, who had died over an hundred years ago, before he was even born. Millions of Americans clearly care an awful lot about the reputation of their ancestors and the ancestors of other people.

MadisonMan said...

Look at societies like the Daughters of the American Revolution and the United Daughters of the Confederacy.

I think the human compulsion to join a group is behind the proliferation of groups such as these -- one of which I could join (Well, it would be the Sons of ...) I'm as interested in the exploits of my predecessors as much as the next guy (if the next guy is a historian, especially), but I recognize that that is only one aspect of my personality, and I am not chained to their exploits.

It's a pretty clear line, I think, between admiring/understanding your ancestors' lives and exploits and having yourself being defined by them. I don't understand people in the latter group -- isn't their own present at least as important as their ancestors' past? It should be.

TMink said...

John, thanks for the post from someone who knows the man.

But I still resonate somewhat with Ferraro's statement.

Would a white man with those credentials be in the same place and getting 90% of the black vote? Nah.

At the same time, a white man would get the benefit of the racist vote! I hope that is a MUCH smaller group.

BHO is intriguing to me for a couple of reasons: He is a wonderful speaker, which I enjoy, and he is the first person of color to be a serious contender for the presidency, which I appreciate.

Both are great and satisfying. His politics are dreadful and would hurt the country and perhaps the world if he is elected, but I am proud of him and for him and for America.

Trey

Balfegor said...

It's a pretty clear line, I think, between admiring/understanding your ancestors' lives and exploits and having yourself being defined by them. I don't understand people in the latter group -- isn't their own present at least as important as their ancestors' past? It should be.

I don't think there's a line at all -- it's just a sliding scale. Few people are wholly defined by their ancestors, after all. That's the stuff of gothic novels and the House of Usher. But many people -- myself included -- find their ancestors to be an important part of who and what they are, for better or for worse. Where they have excelled, we feel the obligation to live up to their example. Where they have erred, we feel the obligation to correct the error, if we can. Where people have been kind to them, or served them well, we feel the obligation to repay the debt.

I feel this more strongly now than perhaps I usually do, because I recently visited the graves of a number of my ancestors, and performed the bows and everything. But I've long felt, in any event, that I'm a member of the family I came from, and what they have done, good or ill, reflects on me, just as what I do, for good or ill, reflects on them. And that this is entirely correct.

While I don't come to this attitude by any sort of White culture, I know it's not foreign to American culture. McCain, Frist, and Obama all clearly understand this, or they wouldn't have written books about it. McCain in particular clearly feels it very strongly. And I was struck, some months ago, by a line Bush I had written at some point about a journalist who had written some scurrilous article or other -- that this journalist was a son of an honourable father. Reading that, I was reassured of a sense of common ground.

paul a'barge said...

John,
I wonder how you would respond to these issues with Obama?

halojones-fan said...

I think I can see the campaign narratives already:

Obama: "I'm a nice guy. McCain is a mean bastard."

McCain: "Sure I'm a mean bastard, but maybe America needs to have mean bastards in charge."

Basically, Obama is the Buddy, McCain is the Daddy.

knoxwhirled said...

It's a pretty clear line, I think, between admiring/understanding your ancestors' lives and exploits and having yourself being defined by them

I agree. I think one's ancestry means less to Americans than it does to other cultures. Individuals might have a passionate interest in their own family history, but it means little in the grand scheme of things. In fact, this is a major theme from that Mamet essay Alhouse posted about earlier: for Americans, where you come from often has little or nothing to do with where you end up in life.

former law student said...

I just noticed cedarford left out Obama's graduating magna cum laude from Harvard. Considering blind grading meant that it had to be earned, I guess it was inconveniently inconsistent with his AA claim.

JohnTaylor88 said...

Wow Mortimer that was the weakest retort ever. Pathetic.

So weak you felt the compulsion to reply to it.

John said...

Tmink,

I wouldn't say I know him well. We were acquaintances, but then he was acquintances with pretty much everybody in the school.

Yeah, I agree there are some serious advantages to his race. Getting educated white liberals into a total tizzy is one of them. Grabbing the support of black folks out from under the clintons is another. I was just responding to Cedarford's claim that there is no reason to think he is smart. I think there is good evidence he's wicked smart. And that's not inconsistent with him being smart enough to play his race for advantage.

Paul a'barge, everything I hear about his minister and church sound pretty bad to me. But I don't really know them. There's probably some good stuff about them too. I would guess that others would take more heat for having a minister who says equally dumb things.

ROCK said...

Top psychiatrist concludes liberals clinically nuts
Eminent psychiatrist makes case ideology is mental disorder

WASHINGTON – Just when liberals thought it was safe to start identifying themselves as such, an acclaimed, veteran psychiatrist is making the case that the ideology motivating them is actually a mental disorder.

"Based on strikingly irrational beliefs and emotions, modern liberals relentlessly undermine the most important principles on which our freedoms were founded," says Dr. Lyle Rossiter, author of the new book, "The Liberal Mind: The Psychological Causes of Political Madness." "Like spoiled, angry children, they rebel against the normal responsibilities of adulthood and demand that a parental government meet their needs from cradle to grave."

This answers alot of questions about liberals and their lack of commonsense!