Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Ah, Wesley Clark, who is about to win the CQ contest for VP, having defeated McCaskill, Bayh, Edwards, Rendell (who defeated Clinton), and is beating Biden in the finals. Nope. Not gonna happen.

Obama spokesman Bill Burton: "As he's said many times before, Senator Obama honors and respects Senator McCain's service, and of course he rejects yesterday's statement by General Clark."

Update [2008-6-30 13:50:55 by Jerome Armstrong]: Obama also made reference to MoveOn in his "patriotism" speech today. The Hill says he criticized them for the Sept '07 ad, saying:

The Illinois senator said politics too often seems “trapped in old, threadbare arguments” that he called “caricatures of left and right.” This, Obama added, was “most evident during our recent debates about the war in Iraq, when those who opposed administration policy were tagged by some as unpatriotic, and a general providing his best counsel on how to move forward in Iraq was accused of betrayal.” The Democrat argued that “given the enormous challenges that lie before us, we can no longer afford these sorts of divisions.”
You'll recall, that Obama skipped the “sense of the Senate” resolution (which passed 72-25 with a certain Senator from NY voting against) which condemned last fall for its "personal attack" on Petraeus. As such, was the primary 'cast-overboard' target for Obama today, but with the netroots fav Clark the issue-of-the-day, its a side.

This is the silly season of politics by Obama. In a sense, it's bi-polar. On the one hand, he's come out of the primary with an energized base and flush with funding from progressives that will mobilize in numbers and tonnage of money, but on the otherhand he's getting terrible advice to make symbolic gestures of defiance toward those same progressive issues and groups in order "to move to the center" for the GE.

This is the part where "untested" comes in for Obama. In a real sense, it's his first general election ever. It's all new territory for him to be up against a competitive Republican. He has no experience upon which to draw, and relies upon advice of "those who have been there" for his every move. Well, for Democrats, "those who have been there" have been doing this same one-trick pony move for quite a few presidential elections, with one slim majority in the last 40 years to show for it. This isn't a 'center' election, it's a realignment one of base politics-- that's the opportunity he's blowing coming out of '06 with the progressive wind to his back.

And yea, I don't think that Clinton would be making these rookie mistakes, so there. But also, I don't see how Obama can possibly lose this election, so there too.

Tags: Barack Obama, Wesley Clark (all tags)



Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

GRR.  I recognize how this helps Obama; he is trying hard to build a centrist image, but if he keeps biting the hand that feeds him, soon it will be gnawed off.

by semiquaver 2008-06-30 09:13AM | 0 recs
This Actually Makes Me Dispair!`

How stupid can Obama be and still get elected?

Clark made a distinction between PATRIOTISM and EXPERIENCE and he was uniquely qualified to do it.

Obama needed desperately to attack McCain on exactly THIS POINT. And the intense media hype around McCain is a perfect example of how he could decide NOT to play by the old rules!

All Obama had to do is send Clark out on all the talk shows to redouble his attacks: "Let me reiterate John McCain does NOT have ANY relevant experience to be commander in chief. I said it and I meant it. Being a Captain in the Navy does not give you any relevant experience. Period.

I said I honor his service and I do. John McCain is a patriot, but patriotism does NOT equal experience and he doesn't have any."

That's how Republicans play it. In fact they refuse to apologize at all and instead convert all character assassination into internet whisper campaign.

Ye Olde Rules which only apply to Democrats: Republican attacks Democrat for being "untrustworthy." Democratic surrogate responds. Media gasps "HOW DARE HE attack St. McCain's service record! He's a WAR HERO." [Insert Relevant Media Narrative which cannot be challenged].

Which he didn't do at all. Media firestorm does exactly what any Democrat with backbone would want -- draw attention onto this entire issue.

Step 2: Democrats wilt in fear from Village criticism rush to "repudiate" remarks. Clucking heads not satisfied demand total sacrifice of Clark and "repudiation" of his remarks -- spend next week arguing about how much this will hurt Obama's campaign.

Lee Atwater's ghost laughs and laughs!

What Obama did now allows St. McCain a FREE PASS for the entire rest of the campaign to posture as the "experienced" candidate and to attack Obama for being "too inexperienced."

This is desperately bad politics. It's exactly the kind of WEAKNESS that totally doomed Dukakis, Gore and Kerry! I was actually looking forward to this debate and counter-attack by Clark and now he's totally been forced to stop acting as Obama's surrogate. It's a disaster for Obama.

by Cugel 2008-06-30 09:52AM | 0 recs
Re: This Actually Makes Me Dispair!`

Hate to say, actually not....hah, but Barkey is gonna lose this one pals.

Dukakis was way ahead at this point too Jerome or did Kos hide you Google and you couldn't find that out.

Barkey's biggest problem is that like crazy Joe he thinks the bi-partisanship schtick and 'running to the center' is gonna help him win.

Folks are sick of the Republican meme. They're broke and they're scared and for Barkey to come along and spew  a bunch of Rethug talking points is dumb beyond belief.

But then all you Obamacrats are convinced that this dumbass is a smart guy.


by Pericles 2008-06-30 10:59AM | 0 recs
Re: This Actually Makes Me Dispair!`

Why do you call him Barkey?

by gravypatrol 2008-06-30 11:10AM | 0 recs
Re: This Actually Makes Me Dispair!`

It's the Nom de Guire at places like NoQuarter for Obama.

Someone must have put a link up to this diary, it's filled with the flotsam and jetsom of PUMA barnacles.

by WashStateBlue 2008-06-30 12:56PM | 0 recs
Re: This Actually Makes Me Dispair!`

About a third of the people who post here seem to come from that fringe. It ebbs and flows with the tide, but there are some points when I think the deranged have come out of the woodwork.

1. Clark was right. No bones about it.

2. Obama shouldn't have commmented, but he and his people feel that the states they need to build their winning coalition don't go for that kind of stuff. Obama's lack of patriotism is the key Rethug argument, so he has to push back on anything that might be cast in that light.

3. Jerome is still on the anti-Obama kick, but it's gone underground. He still hasn't posted a single flattering thing about the nominee and instead wants to focus on some dream world where Clinton wouldn't have made that kind of rookie mistake. (Like the "obliterating Iran thing, I suppose.)

4. Obama has successfully navigated every single obstacle in his path so far and is winning by every significant measure. He beat a strong field of Dems, including Hillary, to get here and he leads McCain overall. If he wins the presidency we can judge his record. Judging who he is based on an electoral campaign is silly. If we judged GWB by his electoral campaign he'd look, at least, a bit more palatable than the hideous war criminal he has proven himself to be.

by mikeplugh 2008-06-30 04:07PM | 0 recs
Re: This Actually Makes Me Dispair!`

i second the above question.

by alex100 2008-06-30 11:37AM | 0 recs
You're no pal of mine,

nor anyone here who wants this country to be saved.  

Your transparent glee is sickening.  Is your schadenfreude more important than the millions of lives that have been and will be lost in Iraq?  Than the children dying in the gutter without health care?  

I'm upset with Obama now, but he will pay us back a thousandfold when he becomes our President.  And though you will not deserve the benefits that come of it, the beautiful thing about democracy is that like it or not, you will receive them anyway.

by semiquaver 2008-06-30 01:08PM | 0 recs
How much gagging can I put up with this guy?

Obama to expand Bush's faith-based programs
CHICAGO - Reaching out to evangelical voters, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is announcing plans that would expand President Bush's program steering federal social service dollars to religious groups and - in a move sure to cause controversy - support their ability to hire and fire based on faith.

He's basically modelling the party as the Republican lite party! Thank you God, for not letting me vote for this fake!

by suzieg 2008-07-01 12:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Wish it wasn't necessary, but Clark was far off the reservation with the second half of his comment.  It makes sense when you read the quote, and is a valid point, even- but anyone with a knowledge of politics and the media could've seen the framing on this a mile away.

by ihaveseenenough 2008-06-30 09:13AM | 0 recs
Who is safe from the Obama bus?

I think Hillary and Michelle are the only two people immune from getting thrown overboard at this point.  Maybe Kathleen Sebelius is safe as well.

I think Clark made a terrible mistake, and I'm not sure if I would have played it differently; the optics look horrible considering how close Clark is to Bill and Hillary.

Blowhard Rush Limbaugh is now pushing that joke "this is not the Wesley Clark I knew."  How long has Obama known Clark anyway, three weeks?

by Blazers Edge 2008-06-30 09:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Who is safe from the Obama bus?

You're worried about Rush?

by spacemanspiff 2008-06-30 09:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Who is safe from the Obama bus?

Nope.  I'm pointing out that Obama was in a bind.
He either throws Clark overboard (which he did) and invites the whole "Obama's bus is getting pretty crowded" mockery/criticism and the scorn of the Clintons or he defends Clark and the media will accuse him of endorsing "swiftboating" (which it wasn't but I still believe Clark shouldn't have made the comment).

The only way it would have worked if Clark had stayed aggressive and made it clear that he was asserting his own opinion and not representing Obama.  Clark would have had to throw himself under the bus and take on McCain personally.  Since we haven't heard from Clark this morning, that's obviously not what occurred.

by Blazers Edge 2008-06-30 09:27AM | 0 recs
Re: Who is safe from the Obama bus?

Attack the perceived strengths of the opponent.

Do it again, again and yet again.

Put them on the defensive.

Sound familiar?

This is the Lee Atwater strategy. Despise him for his political views? Certainly. But as Barack says, 'politics ain't bean bag'. Do not give the opposition a chance to rest.  

Attack, attack, attack.

Now Obama can distance himself if he wants to.

Doesn't negate the POINT. He didn't condemn Clark either. Just rejected the statement.

Classic politics.

Kinda like saying, "I take him at his word when he says he isn't Muslim."

Just get it out there floating around.

Dirty, though classic.

by spacemanspiff 2008-06-30 09:39AM | 0 recs
not MoveOn - he threw it under the bus also for

the General Betray us ad! How proud you must be of the candidate of change! Change for the worse as far as I can see!

by suzieg 2008-07-01 12:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Obama (and/or his 'spokespeople) are either spineless or uninformed.  

by TxKat 2008-06-30 09:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Im just hoping and praying at this point that some more generals and "vetted" military guys as well as groups like VoteVets come out and get Clark's back for this.

I am sick and tired of the GOP owning the military vote.
We all know that the GOP is looing military votes hand over fist this year, so WHY WHY WHY is Obama buckling?

Clark was also the TYT pick for VP about two weeks ago. (disclaimer: His son Wes Jr. works for the show)

by DemsLandslide2008 2008-06-30 09:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Jon SOltz from VoteVets.

Right On, General Clark. Do Not Back Down. right-on-general-clark-do_b_109977.html

by TxKat 2008-06-30 09:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Thank you, see people I put SO MUCH on the line for Obama, and will continue to do so.

But where we are failing at is continuing our activism into the General.

Winning is NOT ENOUGH,  with enough pushback from civilian and military bloggers, sites, and pac's we can still effect the agenda.

I am waiting for more Generals,  I will bang the gavel when Colin Powel takes the back of his comrade.

Like I said in another post, Obama made a HUGE mistake by getting in the middle of this.

Civilians have no bearings in this matter.

by DemsLandslide2008 2008-06-30 09:27AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

If that's true, then by saying he doesn't agree with the remarks and stepping out, the discussion is free to continue without him.  Isn't that the smart way to handle this?

by ihaveseenenough 2008-06-30 09:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Well for me and just about EVERY Democrat I know, NO

Because we agree with Clark and think Obama is buckling to the fear of the GOP/military caucus.

by DemsLandslide2008 2008-06-30 09:37AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Civilians have no bearings in this matter?

Obama soon will become the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States of America.

And you don't want him to challenge military thinking when he feels he does not agree with it?

What, are you like Bush supporters who want the military to run the war, just like General Petraeus?

I thought we were about turning back the power of the government, including (or maybe particularly) to the people.

by PatriotAct1984 2008-06-30 10:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

The YouTube snag there makes it look like Clark is flying through the sky.

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-06-30 11:35AM | 0 recs
tempest in a teapot.

This is manufactured outrage, helped out by the media Heathers trying to turn it into "swiftboating", Clark has said this before, it is no less true now.

It will die down, and it could help with the Overton Window of changing how people think of McCain's service.

Normally i'd be against mentioning such things, but McCain seems to be basing his campaign on it.

by neutron 2008-06-30 09:15AM | 0 recs
Clark statement was


Keep it coming. We can still bring it up whenever we feel like it.

McCain is unqualified to serve.

Note the R's will trash Wes Clark endlessly, as IF the respect military service only if you are a Republican.

by missliberties 2008-06-30 09:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark statement was

Yea, even some of the (R)'s on this site too already!

Dtaylor2 just took a huge shot at him, must be a GOPer prob because he didn't know that Clark endorsed Hillary months ago, and stayed with her until she CONCEDED.

So people, becareful if you see a "former HRC" supporter bashing Clark as an "Obama Guy all along" because if they say that, they know nothing of the Democratic primaries.

by DemsLandslide2008 2008-06-30 09:23AM | 0 recs
So much for the delinquent taxes story

getting any attention today.

by magster 2008-06-30 09:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

While I recognize the truth in Clark's remarks, my pragmatic side realizes that Sen. Obama is being attacked for "patriotism" matters and those remarks about a "war hero" can only hurt him in that regard in the view of the general public.

by whognu 2008-06-30 09:19AM | 0 recs
I think that Clark went too far

It wasn't appropriate.

by puma 2008-06-30 09:19AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Obama needs to distance himself from the statment but clark should by no mean stop saying it.

its true, being shot down doesn't mean you are qualifed to be president.

its sad that voters can't take a step back and realize that.

by TruthMatters 2008-06-30 09:19AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

In the CQ poll, Hillary Clinton was beaten by Ed Rendell, so I'm not taking it as too big of a deal. What IS too big of a deal is that Obama went about this so clumsily. He needs to get his head in the game NOW. This is when the rules get made, and you can't afford to sit it out.

by vcalzone 2008-06-30 09:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Spineless Obama. WEAK.
He can fight his own battles now.

There is no principled Clinton or Edwards to kick about anymore.

by Makey 2008-06-30 09:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Some of you fail at the whole getting elected game

by verbatim 2008-06-30 09:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

aliveandkickin you are so obvious.

by spacemanspiff 2008-06-30 09:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

If they are thinking strategically at all, they should now have Wes Clark keep repeating this, though do so "independently."

by rfahey22 2008-06-30 09:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Well, they can put it in other ways. Just put up a montage of McCain and his mistakes regarding foreign policy.

by Pravin 2008-06-30 09:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

When I mentioned two or three other agenda's in my comment below this is exactly one of those agenda's.

It keeps Clark independent and with the best credentials in that town for comment. Not answering to the campaign gives him a ton of freedom.

Obama's comment, if he had to give one, should have been, "That's Four Star General Wes Clark's view. Everyone is entitled to their judgment. He was not using any direction from my campaign. He was acting independently."

by BigDog 2008-06-30 09:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Yah, this gets Clark's point out there in the media, while Obama keeps his hands clean. Smart, but maybe too smart by half. Maybe.

by stegro 2008-06-30 10:18AM | 0 recs
Throw Clark Overboard,...

Throw him life preserver. Bring back on board. Repeat :)

Maybe Clark and Obama know what they are doing?

I don't see how Clark's or Obama's actions are doing anything to hurt Obama.

by iohs2008 2008-06-30 11:09AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Should be interesting to read the reaction of the Obama supporting netroots. Clark is a hero to many online, me among them, and here he was doing the pushback that many in the netroots look for.

Obama looks more and more like what he is, a moderate, cautious, Democratic politician.

by souvarine 2008-06-30 09:28AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Hillary offered similar criticism of Kerry when he made the comment asking people to graduate or they would be left with no options but be recruited into the war.

by Pravin 2008-06-30 09:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Just curious sourvarine, how do you think Obama should have played Clark's remarks considering how hard McCain pushed back and the media's coverage?

by Blazers Edge 2008-06-30 09:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Obama is in the usual Democratic trap, when elections turn on character Democrats lose. Character campaigns are inherently divisive, because the only way to engage in the campaign is to engage in ad-hominem. We lose divisive campaigns, our electoral coalition is too diverse to survive when we are divided.

Obama chose to run on character, McCain is running Obama's primary campaign against him. So at this point I think Obama had no choice but to reject General Clark's statement. To win at this game, as a Democrat, Obama should have run an issues campaign, but if he had he would not have been the nominee.

We will see if Obama has the political skill to hold together our coalition and beat the Republicans in a character campaign. Or maybe the urgency of the issues facing us will save Obama.

by souvarine 2008-06-30 09:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Cowardly move by Obama. All they had to do was say that he was sure Clark did not mean that there was anything dishonorable about being shot down and that he respects McCain's service. and they could have added "We wished Clark would be more aware of how such comments could be misused by some looking to disparage McCain's service".

That is all they had to say. They did not have to "REJECT" Clark's statement.

by Pravin 2008-06-30 09:28AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

I'm sure Axelrod would love to hear what a real strategist would do.

by spacemanspiff 2008-06-30 09:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Axelrod is only interested in winning this campaign. Some of us are interested in winning this campaign and others. No need to stand up for scumbag Axelrod. I am an Obama supporter, but I do not blindly support all of his moves.

There was absolutely nothing wrong with what Clark said. I think the problem with us we keep playing defense instead of trying to frame issues to our advantage. Republicans smeared Kerry and other Democratic military vets more and they went on to win elections. We have truth on our side this time , and we still play defense.

by Pravin 2008-06-30 09:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Defense? How can you be more offensive than this?

It's all over the news and people are talking about it.

Go after his strengths! Distance yourself from the comments.

Classic political move.

The whole "I suffered so that qualifies me to be president" logic is really rather silly. Are the people we tortured in Iraqi prisons now qualified to serve in parliament purely because we beat the shit out of them? For some reason that logic doesn't seem to be applied to people that WE torture.

by spacemanspiff 2008-06-30 09:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

People only talk about it if you let them do it. But it looks like Axelrod is not throwing Clark under th e bus.  Because if he did, that would be short sighted strategy. That will only encourage the press to keep blowing up non issues. Instead you deal with it, by asking them what was false in what Clark said and that Obama would never step in to make reference to McCain's military career as he respects BOTH mcCain's and Clark's careers.

by Pravin 2008-06-30 09:53AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Interestingly, Axelrod is on MSNBC right now essentially following your suggestion--that Clark didn't really mean it the way it came out. And, it seems Axelrod is being careful not to be too hard on Clark personally. He just said Obama disagrees with the statement and that Clark didn't intend to express disrespect for McCain's service, etc.

by DPW 2008-06-30 09:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Good to hear.

by Pravin 2008-06-30 09:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Clark got lured into the "trap".. and got caught.  Why wouldn't Obama distance himself from this?  I would think Clark would be wise enough to make the point that Obama has been emphasizing, that is that judgement is the most important attribute in choosing a commander in chief, without stepping on McCain's service.  Makes me wonder who Clark was trying to be a surrogate for.. Obama or Clinton.. RareFIDem

by sc1962 2008-06-30 09:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

What trap?? He did what he had to do. He delivered a ham fisted attack on McCain. Are you shocked Democrats can do that? The MSM are.

But our community organizer nominee decided that wasn't going to play in his 'polite' campaign and threw him overboard.

by Makey 2008-06-30 09:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

"I could no more denounce Gen. Wes Clark than I could my own grandmother."

by rayj 2008-06-30 09:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

I'm sorry but are you all new to elections in this country?

has no one seen how the MSM has treated clarks comments either time he said them? and how did you expect the average voter to get the context of clark's statment? the MSM wasn't going to give it to them.

once again we live in the age of soundbites, if the soundbite is bad it doesn't matter how much context you give them.

I am just totally shocked that people here are surprised that Obama had to distance himself from the comments,

we are 4 days away from the 4th of July do you REALLY think the Obama campaign wants to spend the entire week trying to contextualize Clark's statments while McCain and the MSM cry why is Obama attacking McCains status as a POW and a War Hero, because thats what they have done and thats what they will do.

seriously sometimes its like people don't understand how the MSM affects politics in this country.

it doesnt matter what the truth is if the Media wont cover it.

and notice how NO ONE is talking about Obama's speech today? no even HERE this is the top story, Obama doesn't want this to continue past today and over shadow his other speeches.

by TruthMatters 2008-06-30 09:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

The MSM is amazed at Gen. Clark cause they don't expect Demorats to deliver 'laser guided missiles' like Gen. Clark did.
They are shocked.

Obama didn't have to repuke Gen. Clark. He could have ignored it.
Instead he caved to 'raise the discourse'.

Our south side community organizer just threw a 4 star General overboard.

by Makey 2008-06-30 09:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

right whatever

Obama gave a big speech today, can you link me to where the discussion for that is?

his speech got overshadowed by something someone else said, and the media will keep it going untill he comments, is this what Obama wants them talking about on Friday?

while people are celebrating the 4th of July do we really want headlines of Obama questions McCains military service? because that is exactly what the MSM will do

wake up man.

by TruthMatters 2008-06-30 09:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama
Mojo'd. This is absolutely right. If Obama had done any differently, the narrative would be how Clark tried to tarnished McCain's military service and Obama didn't repudiate it. Trying to contextualize the comments or, frankly, do anything short of distance himself from them would only create the discussion of whether Obama agreed or not that would dominate the talk shows for days. Obama did the only smart thing here. Even implying anything negative regarding McCain's service is a road that Obama knows is a no-win situation for him in the election.
by ThinkerT 2008-06-30 10:24AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama
They only people Obama throws under a bus is democrats.
Obne thing I cannot stand is spineless. Hillary is a steel fist.
If Obama cannot show steel against McCain. He should go.
by Makey 2008-06-30 09:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Hillary, oh please. She rarely stuck her neck out before the presidential campaign started. At least some of the obama supporters are willing to call him out on some issues.

by Pravin 2008-06-30 09:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

If she was steel fisted, and the "magial" august candidate as Kosnmore just stated down thread, then she would have joined the only honorable congressmen Feingold in filibustering telecom immunity last Friday.

Democrats love to buckle to Republicans, its just in our nature.

by DemsLandslide2008 2008-06-30 09:40AM | 0 recs
As each one crashes and burns,
it still leaves Hillary.
As they say, after nuclear war, the only ones left will be cockroaches and . . .
by kosnomore 2008-06-30 09:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Obama needs to challenge the media to scrutinize McCain. He hasn't done that. Remember when Hillary challenged the media a few months ago to scrutinize Obama? It worked because she put them on the spot front and center. I mean McCain has so much dirty laundry that's not being aired. He's still out and about campaigning on the 'Straight Talk Express' and his flip flops are barely getting any mention. Can Chris Matthews finally end his sick love affair with McCain?

by Steve24 2008-06-30 09:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Well, gosh...telling the truth isn't popular is it. While taken as a personal assault it might be useful to remember that McCain's military career, while horribly interrupted by torture, was short.

Wes Clark's was 34 years.

McCain is always positioned as the leader for foreign affairs and national security largely because of his military history. Clark attacked that in a very direct manner.

Barack Obama may believe that you can run a campaign without telling the truth or attacking your opponent. I hope not or the attack machine on the other side will eat him up.

Wes Clark may have been working on his own. But there could be two or three agendas here.

As to VP: Clark is the best qualified of the bunch  and I don't think a single comment that he can easily explain is an 'eliminator'. He could bring foreign and military weight to the ticket like no one else. Will it happen? Who knows. Al Gore choose Ol' Joe. Duh. If that happened with the VP selection anything could happen.

by BigDog 2008-06-30 09:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

I'm sorry why did Obama's camp bother commenting at all on this?

If it received alot of heat all they would have to say is that obviously a soldier doesn't make one a CinC but that all Democrats remarks don't necessarily speak for each other.  Clark is entitled to his opinion & Obama his own. Obama admires & respects the service of military men/women current & past including that of John McCain & Wesley Clark. Let the talking heads make this controversy happen! The DNC needs to learn how to circulate talking points that stay off of the candidate!!!

by jrsygrl 2008-06-30 09:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Smartest thing said here so far.

by JohnS 2008-06-30 10:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama
Because the silence would be discussed constantly ("Why haven't we heard from the Obama campaign on Clark's comments?") by the talking heads, allowing them to speculate any way they wish about what Obama's silence means, and would be viewed as tacit agreement by many of them, which could potentially convince some people that that speculation is likely correct. Those people might then conclude that Obama's praise of McCain's military service is simply lip-service and damages his attempts to take that issue off the table. Making a statement removes the speculation from the talk shows, likely reduces the amount of time the story remains in focus, and keeps the issue of Obama "not respecting" McCain's service out of the picture.
by ThinkerT 2008-06-30 10:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Or maybe the DNC needs to learn how to better manipulate talking points for the talking heads and this wouldn't be a problem at all. The message would get out there & Obama wouldn't have to handle it. Eventually he might have to comment on the controversy ala Bush having to say that Kerry's service was admirable to this country during the swiftboat nonsense.  Good Lord when will the DNC take a lesson from the GOP in how to operate when it comes to marketing the candidate!!

by jrsygrl 2008-07-01 02:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

And something else...even though I was initially against Hillary as the VP I'm all for it now.  Hillary is one tough cookie and she'll kick anyone's ass. She also has a great way of framing issues. We need someone like her to go on the attack.  If Obama insists on taking the high road; fine. What we need is a VP who will go on the attack.

by Steve24 2008-06-30 09:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Clarke, the Obama campaign's and maybe the Democratic Party's best military spokesperson decided to take the fight directly to the GOP by challenging McCain's C-I-C  readiness: the former general/Nato commander says that getting shot down in a jet fighter doesn't automatically qualify you.

The Obama campaign just shot Clarke's legs out from underneath him, and just shot itself in the foot. I see the Democrats' balls problem (as in total; lack of) has now officially extended to the Obama campaign. First FISA and now this. It is becoming harder and harder to get enthusiastic about our nominee. Where's the 'effin beef here?

by JohnS 2008-06-30 09:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Let's backtrack...

President Bush on Monday criticized a commercial that accused John Kerry of inflating his own Vietnam War record, more than a week after the ad stopped running

The difference here is Obama did it faster.  Why?  Because he can't win- he lets it go, it goes from "CLARK attacks McCain's service" to "OBAMA attacks McCain's service".  Being that said service is the only thing McCain seems to think he offers, the sooner the conversation shifts back to his tax arrears the better.

Clark was off the reservation on this.  We should be discussing how preposterous it is that the candidate who claims the other is "an elitist" managed to forget about one of the homes he owns.

by ihaveseenenough 2008-06-30 09:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

So, I watched this live and read it many times and I can't, for the life of me, find what was wrong with what he said.

Sorry folks, Obama lost the spin war and caved on this one.

by devoted1 2008-06-30 09:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama
Your problem is looking for something wrong in what was said in the first place. It's not whether what was said was "wrong" or "right", it's how it will be spun and presented in the media. So your conclusion is actually what would have happened if Obama had allowed it to continue - he knows he would have lost the spin war on the comments had he left any impression of agreeing with them, so he defused it from the beginning.
by ThinkerT 2008-06-30 10:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Off the reservation? Please.

Clarke has been saying this for weeks.  Clarke was taking the fight right to them and when Mccain's team punches back, the Obama campaign completely caves, leaving Clarke hanging. Pathetic. Wimpy. Embarassing.  

by JohnS 2008-06-30 09:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama
"leaving Clarke hanging"? Since when is Clark weak enough that he needs support from the Obama campaign? This is strategy, pure and simple. If it wasn't planned, it certainly could have been. Clark can say anything he wants and raise any issue he wants as he's not associated with the campaign, allowing the discussion to occur and people to start to question the relationship between McCain's service and his qualifications. Meanwhile, Obama can keep himself out of that discussion by rejecting the comments. It's even better that Clark's a Hillary guy, it gives Obama an extra firewall against any heat that might arise from them. And if you think Clark's taking the fight to them will be affected at all by anything Obama says, you don't know Wesley Clark very well.
by ThinkerT 2008-06-30 10:46AM | 0 recs
How about a different theory?

over the last 18 months, both Obama and Clinton used proxies to say things that they themselves couldn't.  On several occasions, nasty things were said by people who were leaving the campaign anyway.

If I recall correctly, David Geffen made his "Clintons are liars" comment as he was leaving the Obama campaign.  Billy Shaheen made his "madrassa" comment when leaving the Clinton campaign.  (I may have the details wrong here.)

So, that would mean that Clark as VP has already been discussed.  For all we know, Clark took himself out of the running and, thus, is available for a bit of dirty work on John McCain.

Along these same lines, Obama may be laying the ground work to put Hillary on the ticket in the VP slot.  Obama couldn't do it right after she conceded, given the hard feelings in his campaign.  He needed to acclimate his own supporters to political reality.  So he's drops a couple of bombs on his own supporters: FISA, public financing.  Now they've pretty much accepted what the reality of Obama as head of the party really means.  They've lived through the cold water treatment.  So now, they're prepared for Hillary as VP.

OK, its just a theory.

by dbrown04 2008-06-30 09:53AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

Obama did the right thing - Clark took things a step too far. In purely political terms, if you're going to use a Swift Boat strategy, it needs to come from an outside group, not a campaign surrogate.

Sure, Democrats should stand tough on military matters but when you directly attack McCain this way all it does is give him an excuse to play the sympathy card. Bad politics by Clark, who I otherwise like.

by animated 2008-06-30 09:55AM | 0 recs
Sorry but your are wrong

Clark is right on in his stance that McCain doesn't have the executive experience as he claims. McSame has been milking his Prison of war stuff to excess. His compaign has made an effort to make it an un-assailable shield for his Commander in chief credentials. Thats why his compaign has come out fast and hard attacking Wes Clark a 4 star general who does have the right stuff!

by eddieb 2008-06-30 10:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

As a civilian who has had no military experience, I am grateful to General Clark.
Because John McCain terrifies me...his temper, his ignorance, his close association with the same corporate interests that brought us a war for oil while over 4000 young men and women sacrificed their lives and 10's of thousands more are serously wounded and suffering PTSD amd hundreds of thousands of Iraqis are dead and injured.

McCain promises to keep Americans safe, yet he enabled this terrible war and callously sings "bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" and thinks it's funny.

He has thrown his national security qualifications in my face to stop my public criticism because i would be called unpatriotic for criticizing John McCain.

But the truth is that there's been a leap of faith by the media and some in the general public that McCain is all he pretends to be.

He may be a war hero and clearly suffered terribly as a POW. But he's not qualified to claim a mantle of national security credentials.

Bravo General Clark!

I love your courage and your honesty.

John McCain is not well informed, he does not have good judgment, he is not offering this country the kind of policy that will help us get on a sustainable path. And now he cannot hide behind a military career used like a banner just like George Bush used "Mission Accomplished"

by eve 2008-06-30 09:55AM | 0 recs
Straight from the Shrum school of losing elections

When did Bob Shrum take over the campaign?

by surfk9 2008-06-30 09:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too


by alyssa chaos 2008-06-30 09:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Here's my theory. The Obama camp is weak in the knees when it comes to challenging McCain/GOP's national security chops. Just like the rest of the Dem party. One guy had the balls to stand up to GOP bs and the completely not-unexpected happened.

by JohnS 2008-06-30 09:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too


What Clarke did was not Swift-Boating which is lying/distorting someone's military record. He told the truth: getting shot down in an aircraft while in the service of your country  makes you a hero,  but does not automatically serve as qualification to be C-I-C.

by JohnS 2008-06-30 10:00AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Whatever you want to call it, he made a mistake when he referenced McCain getting shot down. The other stuff was fine, and he had said it before, but that one line was a step too far. I mean, McCain was actually held captive and tortured for years, that's not a MSM invention.  

I'm all for questioning his fitness as CiC, but there are other, smarter ways to make that argument.

by animated 2008-06-30 10:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

When Democrats stand up for themselves.
they show strength.  When Democrats are right about something as significant as McSame's lack of national security credentials, that's important.  

Standing by Clark was important because:

It would keep him as a viable VP pick
Show the media and Rethuglicans that they don't get to dictate the frame in which we talk about natinoal security anymore
Put Rethuglicans on notice that Democrats aren't going to sit back and play defence all the way to November
Obama let us down big time.

by Makey 2008-06-30 10:01AM | 0 recs
A rookie mistake

is thinking that "realignment" means that everyone suddenly agrees with and the netroots.

by JJE 2008-06-30 10:05AM | 0 recs
Re: A rookie mistake

Seriously. Hillary attacked MoveOn during primaries.

by verbatim 2008-06-30 10:08AM | 0 recs
No she didn't.

The hacks at HuffPo had to splice together audio tape to try to make it look she did and you lemmings bought it.

by LatinoVoter 2008-06-30 09:06PM | 0 recs
Re: A rookie mistake

Ah, really, is that a claim that was made or you just imagined it up?

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-06-30 10:36AM | 0 recs
I discovered it

through the magic of reading.  Behold!:

As such, was the primary 'cast-overboard' target for Obama today, but with the netroots fav Clark the issue-of-the-day, its a side....

Well, for Democrats, "those who have been there" have been doing this same one-trick pony move for quite a few presidential elections, with one slim majority in the last 40 years to show for it. This isn't a 'center' election, it's a realignment one of base politics-- that's the opportunity he's blowing coming out of '06 with the progressive wind to his back.

And yea, I don't think that Clinton would be making these rookie mistakes, so there.

by JJE 2008-06-30 10:41AM | 0 recs
Re: I discovered it

Oh, I see, you can't see the base for the roots. Well, it's bigger than this, you ought to know by now.

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-06-30 11:37AM | 0 recs
Is there some relevant difference

in ideology between the roots and the base that I am unaware of and makes your reply coherent?

by JJE 2008-06-30 12:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Is there some relevant difference

If there were, would we know?

by Koan 2008-06-30 04:28PM | 0 recs
VoteVets Petition

VoteVets has a petition to support General Clark's statement.  Take a second to sign it!

Thank General Clark for His Straight Talk, Tell Him To Not Back Down

General Clark,

We the undersigned thank you for speaking up forcefully and honestly about what it takes to lead this nation, and the kind of judgment we must look for. You were right to say that Senator McCain has not shown good judgment, despite his extraordinary service to America. Just in the past few years:

- Senator McCain's service and experience, both as a POW and as a Senator apparently hasn't infused him with a dose of good judgment.

- Senator McCain's experience hasn't led him to realize that the war in Iraq and it's continuance has empowered and emboldened Iran, and destabilized the region.

- Senator McCain's experience hasn't caused him to recognize that we're losing ground in Afghanistan, and Osama bin Laden is still out there, plotting.

- Senator McCain's experience didn't lead him to support the 21st Century GI Bill -- he opposed it. It didn't even make him feel the need to get back to Washington to vote on this -- one of the most important veterans' bills this Congress. He twice skipped votes on the GI Bill, to fundraise.

- Senator McCain's experience didn't help him empathize with troops are overstretched and overdeployed, when he voted against the bipartisan Webb-Hagel "Dwell Time Amendment," which would have given troops as much time at home as in the field.

We all honor Senator McCain?s service, as you said you do. But that does not mean that on matters of security, the military, and veterans that he is beyond reproach. Nor does it mean that his service trumps the poor judgment he has shown in some of the most important issues of our time.

Do not back down, and keep treating the American people like adults who can handle a real, honest, and blunt debate in these important times.

by TxKat 2008-06-30 10:07AM | 0 recs
"...silly season of politics by Obama."

Utter nonsense. Obama is campaigning by good example. He can only neutralize the coming attacks against him by taking the high road.

And he doesn't need "surrogates" and "helpers" out there saying things which are off his message and forcing him to react.

And, as the front runner, neither Obama nor those who purport to speak for him should be attacking McCain on any kind of personal level. Smear campaigning is what losers are forced to do. Obama doesn't need to emulate Bush's rotten campaigns, nor Hillary's and McSame's.

by Beren 2008-06-30 10:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

I think they both (Clark and Obama) are merely being true to their own beliefs:  Clark believes that McCain's 5-time crashing of planes and getting shot down are not qualifications for the job -- he is correct to question it therefore.

But I think Obama believes that the mere fact that he wore the uniform is enough evidence of his sacrifice for the country and therefore it is not a point of contention.

I agree more with Clark than with Obama on this narrow point, but I think Obama's is the better course of action in the longer run.  He leads by example, the way in which he wants the debate to be conducted.  His premise seems to be that they are both fairly well qualified for the job, but that they have 2 very different views for where they want to take the country.  He wants the contest focused entirely on that one aspect...

by DraftChickenHawks 2008-06-30 10:25AM | 0 recs
Obsession by Jerome
And yea, I don't think that Clinton would be making these rookie mistakes, so there.

A new fragrance - bitter, yet lasting far longer than it has any business doing.  For those transparent moments that tell the world, "Hey, I can't be considered an honest broker or rational advocate ever again."
by PantsB 2008-06-30 10:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Obsession by Jerome

wow, why so bitter about a side commentary?

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-06-30 10:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Obsession by Jerome

Not only biter, but totally ungrounded in facts.  Clinton made tons of mistakes during the primaries, part of the reason she lost, so to say she wouldn't make the same mistakes is kind of foolish.

In all honesty, this is only a mistake to someone who expects Obama to engage in tit-for-tat with McCain, and that simply hasn't been Obamas style from day one.  It's funny listening to all the ex-Clinton people get frustrated because Obama isn't standing up and doing some symbolic show of support.  Obama is pathologically doing what he has done all campaign, let others do the nasty bits and he distance himself from it.

Guess what, it beat Clinton pretty good in the primaries and I daresay it will work again.  Hats off for Clarke for being willing to carry the water on this one and I suspect this is part of the plan (Clarke take the heat, Obama keep him at arms length, issue out in the open).

by tlhwraith 2008-06-30 11:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Wes Clark, you've been a bad boy!!!

by nzubechukwu 2008-06-30 10:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Yea, because if miss DLC herself did something like this, it wouldn't be a "rookie mistake," it would be "tested campaign strategy."

But of course, we all know Hillary Clinton wouldn't do something like this, being such a liberal lion and all.

by b1oody8romance7 2008-06-30 10:32AM | 0 recs
One thing is for sure! Youv'e blinded yourself

Your full of "I don't See"s. Couldn't control your addiction to your Queen. I tend to agree with you on the fact that Obama is moving to the right. As I look back I think he likes it there. I hate it and we know how wrong it is but to interject that Hillary wouldn't have swung Right is absurd on it's face. If you take an honest look back Hillary started on the right (ie War Vote) and was forced to move to the left! So DON'T TRY TO erase and Re-make history. Look to whom you are speaking!

by eddieb 2008-06-30 10:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

I'm having trouble buying this argument that Clinton wouldn't have moved to the center.

One of the main reasons she lost the primary was because she was so confident that she moved to the center before she even needed to. She literally couldn't wait to do it.

by animated 2008-06-30 10:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Jerome, no offense, but you're sounding like the rookie here.  This is how the game is played.  Let the surrogates and Moveon do the heavy hitting while letting Obama take the high road.  Clarke is probably laughing meniacally right now.  He knows the game.  I'm a member of moveon, and completely understand Obama's distance from my posse.

Never have anything to with the guys swinging basebats in the middle of a cornfield.  C'mon, this is so blatantly obvious.

by OVAH 2008-06-30 10:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

While I do think that his point about McCain not having any real EXECUTIVE military experience was valid, I think that he went to far in the soundbyte department.  That "..getting shot down" line compeletely overtook his point about mccain's experience and Obama had to distance himself.

What's sad is this whole stupid thing about Clark completely overshadwoed what I think was a great speech by Obama today.  Many on the netroots are too busy "dissing" Obama to realize what a great speech it was.  

After this past week, I think I'm gonna have to take a break from the blogosphere.  I'm new to the netroots game so all this handwringing going on here and elsewhere may be par for the course, but it's giving me a headache.  I gonna stick to Al Giordano and "The Field" and go back to lurker status for awhile, and only come back to catch up on news.

BTW, I know people don't really care what one person out of a thousand does, but whatever.

by lamh3176 2008-06-30 10:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Absolutely - I wrote something similar above. That one line was beyond the pale, and was foolish, because now McCain can inoculate himself to a certain degree against any of this kind of criticism.

But, whatever - Obama doesn't need to establish himself as trumping McCain on national security in order to win. He just needs to be a plausible CiC in his own right.

by animated 2008-06-30 10:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Regardless of where you come down on the validity or tone of Wesley Clark's comments on John McCain's fitness to be an effective C-in-C, Obama's speech today providing a true definition of patriotism will be looked upon as one of his best so far.

Its importance is comparable to that of his speech on race.

As far as whether Hillary would be making these kind of "mistakes", from what I can see, Obama's handling of this issue is superior to that of Dukakis, Clinton, and Kerry.

His swift and strong responses to challenges from those who brought you the Iraq War give his detractors no time to manufacture an image that he would be less effective as a leader on national security.

Simply brilliant.

by PatriotAct1984 2008-06-30 10:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

As long as the Obama people keep making excuses for himself there is really no reason for his definition becoming any sharper. Who is Obama?? More and more a valid question! Obama's perfection is going to be his downfall. I see less and less humanity in him. He is like a droid whos frequency is altered to match the event. He has to be right or is he just moving to the right? Disappointing! I like Clark and what he stands for! To have Obama rebuke his statements on McCain's qualifications is nonsensical. Fisa all over again.

by rayboat 2008-06-30 10:41AM | 0 recs
Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Nonesense! Whats going on here is simply the wingnuts are in full attack mode. They are trying to overwhelm him with B.S. and he's not being defensive by counter attacking! If you don't know Obama by now you haven't been paying attention or not listening! Never at any time has Obama projected an image of being Perfect! The fact that he was right on the issues and can't be smeared the way they did and would with Bill and hillary is not a an example of perfection or arrogance!

by eddieb 2008-06-30 10:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Let's see what i have heard recently; First campaign finance turnabout, next fisa, then guns via supreme court decision, now dumping wes clark? What reversal next???

by rayboat 2008-06-30 11:35AM | 0 recs

Suggests George Packer's speculative piece. He is engaging in more than a little wishful thinking, but I think that is where this is going.

by souvarine 2008-06-30 11:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Ugh.  Also, I can see how Obama can lose.  

by bosdcla14 2008-06-30 10:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Hey, aliveandkickin is back. Hi alive!

by OVAH 2008-06-30 10:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Screw Obama & screw MoveOn. MoveOn I did so much work for in 04, & Obama- forget it.

Wes Clark is the gold standard of the Democratic party- end of the story.

by bluemoon 2008-06-30 10:51AM | 0 recs
How quickly did BO reject any slam on HRC?

Or any slam against Bill?

Or for that matter, on any salm against the civil rights original heavy-lifters who lined up behind Hillary?

by RonK Seattle 2008-06-30 10:54AM | 0 recs
Re: How quickly did BO reject any slam on HRC?

Obama makes me want to puke!

by rayboat 2008-06-30 11:36AM | 0 recs
about as quickly

as they rejected Buffenbarer's bullshit.

by JJE 2008-06-30 12:03PM | 0 recs

by RonK Seattle 2008-06-30 04:33PM | 0 recs
I just gave you one


by JJE 2008-07-01 05:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Funny! When the McSame & Co use a surrogate to slam Obama and McSame denies what the person does, nobody on the left or the right says a Peep. When Obama uses the same tactic WE(the left) do all the attacking. Lets get real folks if Hillary did it Armstrong would be her most ardent supporter!

by eddieb 2008-06-30 11:03AM | 0 recs
Jerome is right

100% right.  Glad the primaries are over.

by ft 2008-06-30 11:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

The measure he favors puts an end to all illegal spying. period. The measure does provide immunity for telecoms, if it passes, but that seems to be a netroots pet issue more than anything else.

by iohs2008 2008-06-30 11:08AM | 0 recs
You were right until this point:

And yea, I don't think that Clinton would be making these rookie mistakes, so there. But also, I don't see how Obama can possibly lose this election, so there too.

The Clintons have shat on the progressive movement and continued to shit on the progressive movement from the moment they were elected at the Presidential level in 1992 through Hillary's career in the Senate.

You're obviously engaging in some serious historical revisionism if you think otherwise.

by Yalin 2008-06-30 11:10AM | 0 recs
Re: You were right until this point:

I think you are confusing the '90's with the '08 campaign. Clinton seemed to get the point.

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-06-30 11:39AM | 0 recs
Nothing says progressive

like obliterate Iran and gas tax holiday and hard-working white people vs. the coastal elites.  Some really brilliant analysis, this.

by JJE 2008-06-30 11:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Nothing says progressive

Or confusing the gas tax holiday with it combined with the profiteering tax.

by Jerome Armstrong 2008-06-30 12:03PM | 0 recs

the Federal Government AND the oil companies are your enemy, Cleetus!  Buchanan '08!

by JJE 2008-06-30 12:07PM | 0 recs
Re: You were right until this point:

But see, that's my precise point. The '08 campaign. Whenever the Clinton's have been in elected office, they've never been supporters of progressive ideals.

Heck, they're the ones who created that dang DLC which is about as anti-progressive as you can get in the democratic party afaic.

I dunno, I just don't think the Clinton's have ever given one whit to the progressive movement unless it has helped get them elected.

by Yalin 2008-06-30 12:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

It's pretty hilarious how Jerome is still only blogging about negative to neutral Obama stories. Not to mention this is seriously some rookie grade political punditry right here. Please ban me so I don't have to suffer through this drivel anymore.

by verbatim 2008-06-30 11:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Really, really weak.  Where's the Obama that wouldn't put up with specious GOP attacks?  That would punch back with the truth, and cut through their crap?

I liked Obama a lot better two months ago.

by ChrisKaty 2008-06-30 11:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Clark screwed up.  Being a military brat, I was fairly shocked his line of attack focused on being shot down - I think it was inappropriate to go there.  McCain is a rich target full of other things besides "being shot down."

Oh, and Jerome, the primaries are over.  Stop picking at the scab, its trying to heal.  If Hillary can do it, so can we.  Don't harm her future or her legacy by going PUMA.

by HillarysDesire 2008-06-30 11:22AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too
Being a military brat, I was fairly shocked his line of attack focused on being shot down

Huh?  Did you watch the clip?  He didn't "focus" on it, he responded with a single sentence to a question specifically about being shot down.
by ChrisKaty 2008-06-30 11:30AM | 0 recs

This is really very simple to me.

Obama is standing up to the wrong people.

He needs to twist his head back on before I lose interest in helping out at all with his campaign.

by alex100 2008-06-30 11:52AM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

This concern trolling from once-respected members of the netroots community is getting a little old.

But setting that aside for the moment:

The entire point of this is so that the fight remains between Clark and McCain.  Not between Obama and McCain.

If it becomes an argument between Obama and McCain on military service, Obama loses (in the media).  Obama's statement didn't specifically refute any of the statements, so the story will stay out there and be Clark vs. McCain.  And the media won't be able to question Clark's credentials because they're impeccable.

This is how good cop / bad cop is played.

by barath 2008-06-30 12:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

I am freaking PISSED at the Obama camp right now.

All they had to say was "SBVT called Kerry a liar.  Gen. Clark called McCain his personal hero, but not necessarily qualified to be president.  There is no disrespect in the General's comment.  I think being a POW neither qualifies nor disqualifies someone from being president, and this is a fair point to make, since my opponent has made this entire campaign about his POW experience."

Political malpractice.  This is classic Shrum.

As dumb as the Petraeus/Betray Us ad, which from the moment I saw it I knew was going to backfire.

by AntiCliche 2008-06-30 12:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

No, this is good cop / bad cop.  Clark plays the bad cop, and keeps hitting McCain, and keeps him occupied.  Meanwhile, Obama keeps his hands clean and pushes other issues that people care about.

by barath 2008-06-30 12:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Maybe, but if the traditional media manages to equate Clark's statements with SBVT calling Kerry a liar, this is a huge net loss.  It's a complete validation of IOKIYAR if we cede that Clark is even in the same rhetorical place as SBVT.  He paid great respect to McCain's service, and only questioned if that service amounts to a qualification for the presidency.

I find that Obama looks more like a wuss than a good cop here, and if there's one thing we should have learned by now, it's that anyone, no matter how stupid, inexperienced, dangerous, wrong, stubborn, out-of-touch, inarticulate, ugly, whatever, will win a presidential election against a wuss.

Furthermore, I like Clark for Veep.  Can't throw the veep under the bus.

by AntiCliche 2008-06-30 02:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too
Obama is trying to show that there's blame on all sides when it comes to using patriotism as a bludgeon, and it's an effective way to make his point without sounding partisan. For that matter, he's correct. Accusing a general trying to serve his country best of treason was a stupid idea, and all it did was play into the hands of the Republicans at a time when we should have been having a serious debate about changing strategy in Iraq.
Not everything is about scoring political points or triangulating, Jerome. Can we perhaps take on faith for a second that he's actually trying to make a point about elevating our discourse?
by tedit 2008-06-30 12:22PM | 0 recs
Time to reverse this question

To ask McCain exactly what it is about his time as a POW makes him qualified to be Commander in Chief.

Since he's so fond of mentioning it as a  central piece of his resume, turn it on  him.

by boadicea 2008-06-30 01:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

"And yea, I don't think that Clinton would be making these rookie mistakes, so there. But also, I don't see how Obama can possibly lose this election, so there too."

Yup, I get it, Obama weak, but good enough. Clinton MUCH STRONGER.....

Funny, THAT is exactly the mindset I see on the day after election day?

After the big Obama win, all the STILL BITTER Clinton supporters will diary something like:

"Senator Clinton would have won EVEN BIGGER!!!"

Amazing how these people even bother to post on blogs, if I had their powers of precognition, or viewing alternative realities, I would have hit it big in the stock market or won the lottery by now?

by WashStateBlue 2008-06-30 01:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked

Well, in a way, Obama is vetting these VP possibilities with these one-off speeches.

Clark is now out, obviously....and I can't imagine that Biden, Richardson, and some others on the list might get a similar Republican reaction when they likely bumble here or there.

Love her or hate her, Clinton seems to be rising from the ashes again.

by mjc888 2008-06-30 02:25PM | 0 recs
He is rebuking the approach

First off, I think Obama should have been much more supportive for General Clark, and not hanging him out to dry on the comments (which I'll admit, made me cringe a bit, even if I did understand where he was coming from).

That said, I think that in the back-and-forth about Obama's comments, not much has been said that the real rebuke here was against the approach and messaging. Obama is deflecting the potential charges against him by criticizing the very framework of "who is really patriotic". Part of the problem is that progressives have been beat up on messaging so often in the past several cycles that some have been willing to use the same tactics and framework to fight back.

I don't think he is trying to move "toward the center" as much as he is trying to the manage the messaging of his campaign, along with the framework of that messaging. While his delivery was flawed, I think his strategy is intentional--if he is to stay the course with his messaging, then he has to hold others to that same level of accountability.

Even still though, he shouldn't have left Clark out to dry and needs to make a strong, unequivocal public defense for his record of service.

Just sayin'

by cornbreadprogressive 2008-06-30 03:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Obama is moving to the center because its what presidential candidates do once they have the primary wrapped up.  I do not blame him one bit.

Once he is elected, his policies will be what matters.

by agpc 2008-06-30 04:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama

Yeah, like when Bush supported civil unions during his first campaign run.  LOL.  

Everything changes once one is in office.

by mjc888 2008-06-30 05:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

"I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president."


I don't see the issue here. Fake outrage.

by devoted1 2008-06-30 05:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

Re: Jerome's point that its Obama's first general election ever. Thats absolutely true. What seems to me the bigger tactical problem for him is that he's running in a 2 candidate race, where the dynamics are different.

His primary selling point, both in his 04 Senate run and in the early primaries this winter, was that he was not a political hack and thus different from the rest of the crowd (in IL in 04, it was Hull, Hynes, and a fourth candidate I can't remember) and in January, it was the entire Democratic field.

Its very hard to be "above the fray" in a 2-candidate race because if you don't answer back, you just get beat. The successful way to do it is to introduce a third target to attack, other than your opponent. If his campaign comes to this realization, they are in luck because the biggest, fattest, most unpopular and easiest to hit target in modern American history happens to be the incumbent President of the United States.

by desmoulins 2008-06-30 05:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Clark gets rebuked by Obama, too

COuple of points:

1.  I voted for Clark for Pres in '04, even after he dropped out.  I LIKE the guy.  I have served in the military.  I like his brash brand of Democratic politics.  But it did NOT get him more than Oklahoma, so...

2.  Clark is a soldier.  Sometimes you have to doa  tough, insane job.  How the hell could anyone else have commented BETTER on the question?  Wes IS a 4 star...that means that even though there is SHOCK over this, people are now talking about it.  Does being a POW make you a good CIC?  Being a War Hero is good for the service, but is it good for the country.  I see this issue that WAS being built as a shield being turned into a DISCUSSION.  I am waiting to see someone ask McCain directly at a town hall "Do you think that being a POW should be a qualification for being President?".  ONLY Clark could get this extreemly touchy bomb off into the land of discourse instead of "poor McCain is being attacked".  And I see it happening BEFORE the 4th as being a positive thing as again, it will be discussed.  

3.  Now add in Obama's speech on patriotism, which is coming DIRECTLY from him.

4.  This will not kill Clark's chances at being VP, this is not vetting, this is taking Repub. sacred territory and turning it into debating terrain.  And MUCH more smoothly than what was done trying to get W's record into the light...

5.  Clark's comments are also initially being misconstrued.  If this thing does have legs, more info will come out and... Clark might be vindicated; ...might make the MSM look really stupid on how THEY handled this, ...might also give McCain serious heartache over this subject (He had to organize a TRUTH SQUAD?  Do they know how STUPID that looks?  Is McCain so weak he needs DEFENDING?)

6.  Obama CANNOT go after him directly on this and MUST MUST MUST keep this ata  distance from himself because Obama DOES NOT have a Military Service record.  Sad that his COmmunity Service record does not count equally in the eyes of the electorate, but it just does not.  So a good military man has to go out and do his duty for his, if you will pardon, commander.  Soldiers who respect their commanders do this GLADLY.

7.  This also opens up a lot of discussion that can be taboo in the military, speaking badly of a fellow soldier even if he does seem to be using his record to inflate himself.  Nothing pisses off the rank and file more than a HERO (in this case used as a derogitory; those who have served know what I mean.)

Finally, it is nice to see this topic has Bill Bennet on CNN looking squemish attacking Clark. :)

by Hammer1001 2008-06-30 06:11PM | 0 recs

Obama wants to control his messaging. He doesn't want freelancing 'surrogates' taking him places he doesn't want to go and knocking his campaign off message. His big patriotism speech got buried by a soundbyte today that did not come from his campaign.

He's not 'throwing Clark under the bus,' he wouldn't have used those words or that line of attack and he doesn't want Clark's words put in his mouth. General Clark is entitled to say whatever the hell he wants however he wants but Obama's campaign is not obligated to let him define the debate for them.

One minute diarists are complaining that the Obama surrogates don't have enough message discipline then they are screaming that Obama is not getting behind Clark. Is Clark calling the shots now for Obama's campaign and how it should be taking on McCain?

As to Jerome's cheap shot that Hillary would not be making these rookie mistakes. The only reason Obama is the nominee is that Hillary made lots of mistakes and Obama used most of them to his advantage. He would not have had a snowball's chance in hell if she hadn't made some grievous strategic errors giving his better planned campaign a huge opening.

by hankg 2008-06-30 06:33PM | 0 recs
Obama Learned from Rev. Wright incident

Clinton helped Obama a lot. Obama is no longer a rookie thanks to her. Obama backed Rev. Wright and for his trouble Rev. Wright stabbed him in the back. He can only hope Rev. Wright stays quiet until after the general election.   He distances himself from Wes Clark because he has no idea what Wes will say next.

Clinton had lukewarm responses to Geraldine Ferraro's racially charged attacks on Obama and I don't think that helped her.  Eventually, Clinton had to distance herself from Ferraro, but the damage to her reputation was done.  

Obama does not need to court the vote of progressives and liberals. He already has them. A vote for McCain is a vote for more Iraq and a conservative supreme court for the rest of your lifetime. He has pragmatically decided to move to the center. Whether that helps him or not, we shall see.

by erlin 2008-06-30 08:38PM | 0 recs
Sure, Jerome

You're right, the Clintons would never have thrown Clark under the bus after a statement like he made. They would have stood there with him and repeated the same thing. Yeah, what a rookie :P

by RandyMI 2008-06-30 09:27PM | 0 recs

After spending the primary supporting the DLC candidate, we now attack Obama for not being "progressive".

by RandyMI 2008-06-30 09:32PM | 0 recs


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