The Democrat party crack-up

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There are so many news stories out there today about how much in disarray the Democrats are right now that it’s hard to know where to start. For the party that many believe has been in the driver’s seat since the 2006 elections to take the WH and expand their majorities in the House and Senate, you’d never know it as these days watching the various politicos and operatives duking it makes one wonder if we’re watching Real World: Sesame Street, live as it’s happening.

The furor continues unabated this evening from many of Barack Obama’s thin-skinned supporters who continue to whine that the deck was “stacked against” BO at last night’s ABC News debate (transcript here). Apparently they believe, essentially, that even though Obama is a grown man he should still be spoon-fed baby food rather than the meaty stuff we grown-ups eat. Disappointingly enough, instead of telling his supporters to chill out, that he was an adult who can take the heat, the frontrunner for the Dem nomination seemed to echo the sentiment expressed by his followers in a speech he gave today in Raleigh, NC (video here):

I will tell you it does not get more fun than these debates. They are inspiring debates. I think last night we set a new record because it took us 45 minutes before we even started talking about a single issue that matters to the American people.

It took us 45 minutes — 45 minutes before we heard about health care, 45 minutes before we heard about Iraq, 45 minutes before we heard about jobs, 45 minutes before we heard about gas prices.

Now, I don’t blame Washington for this because that’s just how Washington is. They like stirring up controversies and getting us to play gotcha games and getting us to attack each other. And I’ve got to say Sen. Clinton looked in her element.

She was taking every opportunity to, you know, get a dig in there…. That’s all right, that’s her right, that’s her right to kind of twist the knife a little bit….

Look, I understand though, because that’s the textbook Washington campaign, because that’s the politics that’s been taught to be played, that’s the lesson that she had heard when the Republicans were doing the same things to her back in the 1990s.

Comprende? George Stephanopoulos and Charlie Gibson are right wing tools, people!

Are we detecting a pattern here? Just a few days ago, Obama was accusing Clinton of using the “GOP playbook” against him. It’s become one of several talking points he has adopted on the campaign trail to try and stifle criticism of him using the guilt card. Legitimate criticisms of him, according to not just his campaign but the man himself, boil down to a number of things: “racism,” deliberate attempts to “distract” from the ‘real’ issues, are borrowed from the “GOP playbook,” yada yada – you get the point. Anyone who levels criticism at him should viewed as being guilty of racism, deliberately attempting to distract from his “message,” and/or are harbor secret right wing agendas. And let’s not forget how he grumbled about how the media took Hillary Clinton’s media bias criticisms to heart in becoming tougher on He Who Walks on Water: V.2008.

Quite frankly I’m offended but not surprised that Barack Obama believes that character doesn’t and shouldn’t matter when a person is making a choice about which candidate to support. But sister, you might ask, where did he say character doesn’t matter? Let’s take a look again at some of what he talked about in Raleigh:

I think last night we set a new record because it took us 45 minutes before we even started talking about a single issue that matters to the American people.

The first half of the debate was spent primarily on character issues. Who are you? Why are you associated with so and so? Senator Clinton got asked by closet right winger George Stephanopoulos about a recent poll which indicated that a majority of respondents didn’t believe Senator Clinton was honest, hardly a softball question. Barack Obama was asked about his long term mentorship with Rev. Wright, his association with Weather Underground terrorist William Ayers, among other thing people have been curious about, and he tried to downplay every one of them.

Today he complained that who he has associated with and asking about what their influences might be on him, as well as pressing further on remarks he’s made that make him sound stuck-up and out of touch, that those are all things that “don’t matter” to the American people and that last night was, for the most part, a preview of what we’ll see happen to him in the general election. Well, he’s somewhat right on part of that: To many of his fawning supporters, the man could be holding the smoking gun at the scene of a triple homicide and he’d still be innocent. That’s the Cult of Obama in a nutshell. But unfortunately for Barry O, there are people out there, and not a small number, who still have a lot of questions about who he is and where his loyalties are, people who believe that yes, character does indeed matter. Last night’s first several questions were only a distraction for Obama’s campaign to hoodwink millions of people into believing he’s something he’s not: a different kind of politician. About the only thing different about him is the lengths he’ll go through in order to achieve that deception.

And one last point about his complaints about how he was treated last night: if the dude can’t take what George Stephanopoulos and Charlie Gibson give him, how’s he going to handle the much rougher treatment he’s going to get from much more sinister outfits like, oh, Al Qaeda, for example? Will he accuse them, too, of using the right wing playbook?

Jim Geraghty hits the nail on the head here:

Hey, welcome to the big leagues, rookie. You’re gonna get some questions you’re not going to like. Not everybody gets to have their main opponent’s bid implode when their divorce records are unsealed and compete against Alan Keyes in a general election.

Seriously, if Barack Obama can’t handle questions like this from Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopolous, maybe the portrait of the cracking-under-pressure whiner depicted in the Saturday Night Live sketch isn’t as wild an exaggeration as we thought.

Some of us didn’t find it an exaggeration at all.

Obama’s so uptight about last night’s debate that he’s saying there shouldn’t be anymore. He’d prefer to campaign …. in front of a bunch of like-minded yes-men, of course. I guess this means the proposed North Carolina debate is out.

Moving right along ….

—- Did you know that the mighty far lefty Kos no longer considers Hillary Clinton a Democrat because he, too, believes she’s using GOP talking points against the saintly BO? An upset Big Tent Democrat at the Talk Left blog suggests to Kos that that is no way to unify the party. Read more about the stand off between Obama supporters and Clinton supporters via liberal Tom Watson.

—- In other, news: Although race-baiting DNC Chair Howie Dean has vowed not to make McCain’s age an issue of his campaign, that hasn’t stopped one Democratic operative from starting a website which focuses on that very subject:

Called “Younger than McCain“, the website is being run by Steve Rosenthal, a former political director at the AFL-CIO and executive director of America Coming Together, a massive soft money effort organized around the 2004 presidential race. Rosenthal is now a partner in The Organizing Group.

The current content amounts to a 90-second video listing the things younger than McCain — a list that includes the Golden Gate Bridge, plutonium, Coke in a can and Velcro among many, many other things.

[…]

“John McCain comes from another time, an old war-horse stuck in the past with an old-world view of things,” said Rosenthal. “Our videos — hopefully in a funny way — are aimed at pointing out just how old, out of touch and clueless he is.”

Rosenthal said he and a “group of twenty-somethings” in his office put the original video together and are already at work on the next one.

These types of sandbox antics makes you wonder if there are many adults left in the Democrat party.

If this story is true …

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… then it’s probably one of the most, if not THE most, disgusting “art displays” I’ve ever heard of:

Art major Aliza Shvarts ’08 wants to make a statement.

Beginning next Tuesday, Shvarts will be displaying her senior art project, a documentation of a nine-month process during which she artificially inseminated herself “as often as possible” while periodically taking abortifacient drugs to induce miscarriages. Her exhibition will feature video recordings of these forced miscarriages as well as preserved collections of the blood from the process.

The goal in creating the art exhibition, Shvarts said, was to spark conversation and debate on the relationship between art and the human body. But her project has already provoked more than just debate, inciting, for instance, outcry at a forum for fellow senior art majors held last week. And when told about Shvarts’ project, students on both ends of the abortion debate have expressed shock — saying the project does everything from violate moral code to trivialize abortion.

But Shvarts insists her concept was not designed for “shock value.”

“I hope it inspires some sort of discourse” Shvarts said. “Sure, some people will be upset with the message and will not agree with it, but it’s not the intention of the piece to scandalize anyone.”

The “fabricators” or donors, of the sperm were not paid for their services, but Shvarts required them to periodically take tests for sexually transmitted diseases. She said she was not concerned about any medical effects the forced miscarriages may have had on her body. The abortifacient drugs she took were legal and herbal, she said, and she did not feel the need to consult a doctor about her repeated miscarriages.

Shvarts declined to specify the number of sperm donors she used, as well as the number of times she inseminated herself.

Yuval Levin is skeptical:

Color me dubious about the Yale art project story. In talking to a few knowledgeable docs this morning, the facts don’t add up very well. Self-insemination of the sort she seems to be claiming is no easy feat, and “herbal” abortifacients are extremely dangerous and not at all reliably effective. It’s highly unlikely that these two improbable elements would both be carried off successfully multiple times, and with no side effects. It’s more likely that her senior art project is to see how many people she can upset with a hoax.

I hope he’s right. I mean, I know far left feministas have advocated and in all too many cases done some very very disturbing, disgusting things, but this would take it to an all new low level of depravity. I really don’t want to believe that any woman out there would be so incredibly stupid.

Fri AM Update: My intrepid commenters are on the case, and have linked up to a NY Sun story where Yale officials stated yesterday that the story was a hoax. All the same, it’s disturbing that anyone would make up such a claim. I hope Aliza Shvarts isn’t a symbol of things to come from other young women in this country. If so, the jobs of anti-feminists like myself have just gotten a lot tougher.

Last night’s debate

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The top story at Memeorandum this morning is about how liberals in the blogosphere and the punditocracy feel that last night’s ABC News debate was poorly moderated and didn’t contain nearly enough policy questions, and focused too much on side issues like campaign “gaffes,” associations, and questions about faith and patriotism.

Translation: Barack Obama had to face some tough questions last night, and they didn’t like it.

Michelle Malkin noted in an early morning post that the KosKidz are talking about launching a campaign against ABC for being mean to Barry O. Last time the far left launched a campaign against ABC it was in defense of Bubba Clinton and how his counterterrorism record was portrayed in the docudrama Path to 9-11.

I watched most of the debate last night, and agree with the NYT’s David Brooks’ assessment:

The journalist’s job is to make politicians uncomfortable, to explore evasions, contradictions and vulnerabilities. Almost every question tonight did that. The candidates each looked foolish at times, but that’s their own fault.

We may not like it, but issues like Jeremiah Wright, flag lapels and the Tuzla airport will be important in the fall. Remember how George H.W. Bush toured flag factories to expose Michael Dukakis. It’s legitimate to see how the candidates will respond to these sorts of symbolic issues.

[…]

Second, Obama and Clinton were completely irresponsible. As the first President Bush discovered, it is simply irresponsible statesmanship (and stupid politics) to make blanket pledges to win votes. Both candidates did that on vital issues.

Both promised to not raise taxes on those making less than $200,000 or $250,000 a year. They both just emasculated their domestic programs. Returning the rich to their Clinton-era tax rates will yield, at best, $40 billion a year in revenue. It’s impossible to fund a health care plan, let alone anything else, with that kind of money. The consequences are clear: if elected they will have to break their pledge, and thus destroy their credibility, or run a minimalist administration.

The second pledge was just as bad. Nobody knows what the situation in Iraq will be like. To pledge an automatic withdrawal is just insane. A mature politician would’ve been honest and said: I fully intend to withdraw, but I want to know what the reality is at that moment.

The third point concerns electability. The Democrats have a problem. All the signs point to a big Democratic year, and I still wouldn’t bet against Obama winning the White House, but his background as a Hyde Park liberal is going to continue to dog him. No issue is crushing on its own, but it all adds up. For the life of me I can’t figure out why he didn’t have better answers on Wright and on the “bitter” comments. The superdelegates cannot have been comforted by his performance.

I don’t know how the supers are feeling about Obama’s performance last night, but if the reaction from the leftosphere is any indication, Brooks is spot on. It’s no wonder there’s some much whining about how the debate was conducted. It didn’t paint Obama in a glowing light and even some of his own supporters are admitting he just didn’t look good. So it must be the media’s fault, because he, you see, can do no wrong.

The winner of last night’s debate? John McCain.