American Elephants


Campaign Courtesy by American Elephant

A minor kerfuffle developed over a campaign ad the North Carolina Republican Party had planned to air criticizing Barack Obama over Reverend Wright (and in turn criticizing two local politicians over their support for Obama.)

Well, of course, Democrats went berserk and demanded McCain denounce the ad. Howard Dean attempted to make additional political hay by claiming that if if McCain didn’t force the NC GOP to pull the ad, that it shows he isn’t qualified to be president:

Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean today issued the following statement calling on McCain to exercise real leadership and pull the plug on this ad:

“This is a test of leadership for John McCain. If he can’t pick up the phone and make members of his own party stop airing a television ad he claims to oppose, how can he lead our country through an economic crisis or the war in Iraq?

Which, of course, is a ridiculous assertion — McCain is campaigning to be President of the United States where speech is still free. Perhaps Dean is confused because his party has such dictatorial tendencies. Nonetheless, both McCain and the RNC have denounced the ad and the NC GOP has since agreed to pull the ad.

Conservatives are understandably upset, because there’s nothing wrong with the ad. Obama should be criticized for his relationship with the deeply offensive Reverend. His relationships, and then his refusal to dissociate himself from Wright and Ayers show profoundly bad judgment and raise legitimate concerns about his own views. Democrats claims that the ad is racist are ridiculous and show just how much damage the Wright issue has done their candidate.

But what McCain seems to understand, and my fellow partisans on the right do not, is that voters are sick to death of the poisonous political atmosphere that not only pervades Washington DC, but has spilled over into their everyday lives, and it will be a major issue in the November elections.

Perceptions matter. It is irrelevant that the ad raises legitimate criticisms of Obama, all that matters is what voters think. And since most Americans haven’t seen the ad (and won’t), with the media carrying their water, Democrats will most likely be able to successfully, albeit dishonestly, smear the ad as “racist” or, at the very least, “dirty”. In that respect, McCain and the GOP are right to distance themselves from it.

The problem will be making sure Obama continues to be held accountable for his very close and personal association with the racist and anti-American Wright. He still to this day has not sufficiently answered the question of why he remained in that pew for 20 years when it was so obvious what Wright was teaching, quite frankly, because there’s no good answer. He did it and refuses to say he was wrong. Americans are rightly disturbed by Wright’s vitriol, and rightly unpersuaded by Obama’s refusal to condemn or divorce himself from a purveyor of such radical hatred.

But because Republicans seem unwilling to defend the legitimacy of the issue, and Democrats are certain to try to paint anyone criticizing Obama as racist, it looks as though it will be up to independent groups and alternative media to keep Obama’s long and close association with Wright front and center.

We are more than happy to perform that service.



It Used to be Bigger than that! I swear! by Emerald City Elephant
April 24, 2008, 12:21 pm
Filed under: Foreign Policy, News | Tags: , , ,

Witch Doctors in Africa stealing/shrinking men’s penises:

“It’s real. Just yesterday here, there was a man who was a victim. We saw. What was left was tiny,” said 29-year-old Alain Kalala,

The Jokes write themselves, but the story really isn’t funny:

Police in Congo have arrested 13 suspected sorcerers accused of using black magic to steal or shrink men’s penises after a wave of panic and attempted lynchings triggered by the alleged witchcraft.

…Police arrested the accused sorcerers and their victims in an effort to avoid the sort of bloodshed seen in Ghana a decade ago, when 12 suspected penis snatchers were beaten to death by angry mobs.

It’s a glimpse into the distant past for the West — when belief in witchcraft and superstition were widespread — but a dangerous reality in present-day Africa. The same sort of pervasive, ignorance and superstition remains one of the biggest challenges to slowing the spread of AIDS on that troubled continent.




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