Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Today several publications are reporting on this:

While another diary histrionically reported this, a very negative and flame-war discussion emerged.  Several commenters suggested that someone else diary this so that the MyDD community could discuss this in a more positive way - so here goes.

Question No. 58 in the transition team vetting document for the Obama White House asks that applicants: "Please provide the URL address of any websites that feature you in either a personal or professional capacity (e.g. Facebook, My Space, etc.)"

Question No. 63 asks that applicants "please provide any other information ... that could ... be a possible source of embarrassment to you, your family, or the President-Elect."

For a while there this afternoon, President-elect Barack Obama's immensely talented chief speechwriter, 27-year-old Jon Favreau, might have been pondering how to address that question.

That's when some interesting photos of a recent party he attended -- including one where he's dancing with a life-sized cardboard cut-out of secretary of state-designate Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, and another where he's placed his hand on the cardboard former first lady's chest while a friend is offering her lips a beer -- popped up on Facebook for about two hours. The photos were quickly taken down -- along with every other photo Favreau had of himself on the popular social networking site, save for one profile headshot.

Asked about the photos, Favreau, who was recently appointed director of speechwriting for the White House, declined comment. A transition official said that Favreau had "reached out to Senator Clinton to offer an apology."

Favreau is not the first campaign aide whose online presence has proved awkward. Last March, John McCain aide Soren Dayton forwarded an anti-Obama YouTube video to his private Twitter feed linking Obama with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, leading to his suspension from the campaign. And in 2007, two bloggers hired by former North Carolina senator John Edwards stepped down after blog posts they had written before he hired them became a subject of controversy.

Favreau's case seems unlikely to be so dire; Clinton senior adviser Philippe Reines cast the photos as evidence of increased bonhomie between the formerly rival camps.

"Senator Clinton is pleased to learn of Jon's obvious interest in the State Department, and is currently reviewing his application," he said in an e-mail.

To me this story is really kinda gross but also touches on an important issue.  

Namely that technology has changed everything.  I recently had a discussion about this phenomena with a colleague, whereby he explained that some of his staff had no problem posting lewd and unprofessional photos, etc on their Facebook pages even though they know that their boss could see/read them and are on their Friend list.  We debated whether or not this was a result of technology and if not caring about the implications of their actions was a generational thing.  

We went on to talk about how people born in 1990 and after do not know a world without the internet.  Which then changes how everything is done, from education to work.  For example - imagine a world never having to step in a library????

Anyway - this topic merits a fair discussion both in terms of the photo and the circumstances of its discovery.

Tags: clinton, facbook, favreau, sexism (all tags)




you can remove tags from facebook pics ;)

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:02PM | 0 recs
I think the topic is Sexism

And the other diary discusses that.

This one does not.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 05:07PM | 0 recs
Re: I think the topic is Sexism

lets discuss it then.


by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:11PM | 0 recs

Here's a real problem.  Is this something that the whole world is going to know about.

Clinton gets appointed Sec. of State and week later, this??

This is very bad for the Obama camp.

But you know what really infuriates me, if this did turn into a situation where it prohibited Clinton from doing her job -- if it underminded her role in the Obama admin to that point -- and I doubt it will, but if it did, then Clinton would be fired for what that sexist moron did when he couldn't keep it together.

And that's kind of how it's been for women when the sexism thing gets going.

Sorry. You can't have the job cause the rest of the world is too sexist.  Bummer for you!


This very bad for the Obama folks.  And Clinton will rise above it now cause she works for Obama so that's what she has to do, but no this guy should not be put in jail, this isn't the most important thing in the world, but he should not just issue a private apology to Clinton (like Eddie haskell would do), but issue a real apology to every woman in America who aspires to be president.

Cause that's what a man would do who holds himself accountable for his actions.

Thanks for letting me discuss this.  I hope I don't get called a troll.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 05:17PM | 0 recs
This very bad for the Obama folks???

isnt clinton an obama folk now?  i agree its gross and sexist, but im not sure i understand where your argument is going...

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:21PM | 0 recs
I thought I was clear

It's bad for the Obama folks inclusive of Clinton.

Yes.  They are on the same team now.  And look what happens.

That is what I mean when I say it looks very bad, are other world leaders gonna look at this and made a decision about Clinton as a woman and who Obama employs???!!!  It's a real question.

She is downplaying it cause she knows what will happen is the point.  She has to downplay it.

Do you get the argument yet?

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 05:24PM | 0 recs
Re: I thought I was clear

yes - i understand.  good point.

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:26PM | 0 recs
Re: I thought I was clear

You and Idemocrat make a great team. CG this will be a long eight years for someone who never liked Obama. You always seem to find a way to lower the bar.

by canadian 2008-12-05 05:48PM | 0 recs
Re: I thought I was clear

hi politicalsalve - your sockpuppet, and jacking my handle are unwelcome to me. ciao!

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:54PM | 0 recs
Um, no.

No. A ridiculous point.  Please.  If you think Sarkozy or Putin gives a rat's ass about a goofy picture put up on Facebook by one an Obama speechwriter, then you really need to take a breath.

For perspective, do you think Merkel would care about a similar photo if it were an Obama speechwriter and her as the cardboard stand-in? Maybe if this guy was SoS... maybe.  But you know what? There are bigger issues out there. Thank God they know that.

This is a non-issue continuing the primary narrative by Obama's detractors that his was a sexist campaign. Head over to Texasdarlin and Alegre's Cavern if you are looking for a little GOP-style mock outrage. On the other hand, don't ask Hillary about it.  Being a grown-up, she's thinking about bigger fish to fry. Kudos to her office for having the perspective that some here clearly lack, and for handling this tempest in a teapot with the appropriate amount of dismissive humor.

by mikeinsf 2008-12-06 06:53AM | 0 recs
Second that.
World leaders are likely as aware of this "situation" as we are of the shenanigans of every drunken lout employed by Putin.
Sorry, I just don't see the G8 summit being disrupted by this sort of newsflash.
by Sumo Vita 2008-12-06 03:12PM | 0 recs
I'll try to be even more clear

You really can't understand sexism until you realize how these things prohibit a woman from doing a job they are hired to do.

If you can't condemn Favreau's actions because of Sexism of because of Clinton hatred, or any of those other issues, do it cause this is about the US Sec. of State.

We haven't even discussed that yet.

I don't see how Favreau can still be part of the Obama team after this with or without Clinton.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 05:28PM | 0 recs
Obama must fire his speech writer(director)!
It has nothing to do with Clinton and has every thing to do with Favreau's attitude towards women!
Sounds like he thinks they are toys to be played with!
by Joshuagen 2008-12-06 05:06AM | 0 recs
What I'm most interested in

Is people understanding the unacceptableness of that behavior.

Cutting him loose would do that, but so would a public apology from Favreau.  Not some "I was misunderstood" apology, or some "I'm sorry this was posted in public" apology, but a "What I did was wrong in any context whatsoever," apology.

Firing people just sometimes turns them into martyrs.  Mark my words, people would just blame Clinton then.  That's what they always do anyway.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 05:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama must fire his speech writer(director)!

Not to mention his attitude towards cardboard.  Caught in bed with some freaking #3 corrugated?!  Pervert!

by username 2008-12-06 05:43AM | 0 recs

...There's some polystyrene I wouldn't mind rolling over next to. :)

This should be read as a direct, jokey response to the previous comment  If this is read in the larger context of the conversation, I apologize for one reading it that way.

by AZphilosopher 2008-12-07 09:55AM | 0 recs
You really underestimate Hillary

if you think this prevents her from doing her job.  what a joke.

by mikeinsf 2008-12-06 06:55AM | 0 recs
Its bad for all Democrats

and it needs to be dealt with.  No exceptions, no excuses.

by Betsy McCall 2008-12-07 05:51AM | 0 recs
Sexism is as bad as racism

Its harmful to individuals and society for all the same reasons as racism, and should never be tolerated.

Without rehashing old wars from the primary, suffice it to say that sexism, directed towards Hillary and her women supporters, was tolerated by many in the Dem Party community during the primary race.  

Sexism is wrong and is contrary to everything the Democratic Party stands for.  The "boys will be boys" argument is no more valid for Democrats than it is for Republicans.  

Sexsim within the Dem Party at all levels from voters to leaders needs to end, period.

by Betsy McCall 2008-12-07 05:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Sexism is as bad as racism

except this isn't sexsim.  But if it were, then yeah, of course it's bad.

by KLRinLA 2008-12-07 08:52AM | 0 recs
Re: I think the topic is Sexism

No.  The other diary discusses Kalitechnism, which is like sexism in every way except for the part about advancing women's rights.

by username 2008-12-05 05:48PM | 0 recs
I don't know that history

But I do think this diary is an attempt to say it's not that big of a deal.

And while it's not as big a deal as the jobs lost over the last month, it's not something that should be forgotten.

It's a bummer this got posted, but that's what happened, and now it's out there.

I wish it wasn't.  But more than that, I wish this kind of sexism wasn't rewarded in our society so that people would think twice about doing stuff like that in any context whatsoever, private or public, or otherwise.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 06:08PM | 0 recs
Re: I don't know that history

MyDD has a rich history of trolling and general stupidity, promoted and excused by some of the admins.  I really encourage you to read up on it (e.g. Alegre, TexasDarlin, ...) to understand the old-timers' views.  

I don't see any "rewards" being given.  This poor dude is being taken to the woodshed over a dumb mistake that should be a complete non-issue, and I think your peering-into-bedroom-windows vision of morality is ridiculous.

by username 2008-12-05 07:05PM | 0 recs
I think

You just said what he did is a non-issue adn that I'm ridiculous.

You want to make the issue me, I get it.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 09:00PM | 0 recs
Re: I think

No, I was just objecting to tokenism and faux outrage, the two pillars of Kallitechnism.

But yes, I still think you're a troll.

by username 2008-12-06 05:41AM | 0 recs
Of course to be outraged about this

Would be fake because he did nothing wrong.

Like I said, I understand where you stand on this.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 05:45AM | 0 recs
Oh please

That's like saying racism is acceptable as long as people are trying to help racial minorities get elected.

by Betsy McCall 2008-12-07 05:53AM | 0 recs
Re: Oh please

it's not sexism, no matter how much you want to believe it.  

by KLRinLA 2008-12-07 08:55AM | 0 recs
while i happen to agree with you.

why not argue your point of why its not?

by canadian gal 2008-12-07 08:58AM | 0 recs
Re: while i happen to agree with you.

i think the picture speaks for itself - crass silliness.  also, trying to use reason with those on a witch hunt is futile.  this pic is just fuel to fire to those who want to believe obama or males in geneal are sexist pigs that should nailed to the wall.  while there is an infinite amount of evidence in the world to use in proving that point (males in general, not obama), this pic doesnt fit into that category    

by KLRinLA 2008-12-07 10:04AM | 0 recs
Re: while i happen to agree with you.

Dude. I have diary up at the Moose.

Would love your input. ;-)

Carry on here.

by spacemanspiff 2008-12-07 10:32AM | 0 recs
Re: while i happen to agree with you.

i agree with some of your comment in that there are some trying to connect this to obama the person and that's fail save for how he deals with this.

but i dont agree that its crass silliness.

by canadian gal 2008-12-07 10:32AM | 0 recs
Re: while i happen to agree with you.

No worries, I am sure people have legitimate reasons for being very offended by this, but I think it was a joke with no malice behind it.  Has no honest person made an off color remark before?  Is this guy really an evil nasty man with desire to perpetutate the downfall and suppression of women, based on this pic alone?  Of course not.  And to claim that is ridiculous (not saying you are saying it).  I also find it curious that many use this as a guilty by association attack on Obama.  Funny how that seems to be the case around here.

That is why the issue is more on his professionalism and lack of candor based on his position.  Yeah it's got to be very embarrasing and rightly so, but I don't think it's anything more than a social faux pax

by KLRinLA 2008-12-07 08:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I've heard many call this is issue sexism. I'm not so sure. I think simple beer induced male immaturity/stupidity is closer to the truth.

by jsfox 2008-12-05 05:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

can they be both?

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Yes, and let me add. because as soon as I wrote this I realized I failed to add that. However, unless one of us was there we have no idea what led to this moment of stupidity, what was being said if anything and it might not matter because the picture speaks for itself. Might I further add John as someone who is now supposed t be going into the WH - he might want to rethink those plans. And personally a simple apology to Hillary may not be quite enough. A long crawl and hands and knees from Chicago to DC might be appropriate. Maybe he should go to work as Hillary's speech writer so that he keeps his job at her pleasure.

by jsfox 2008-12-05 05:41PM | 0 recs
great comment!

major mojo for you...

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:43PM | 0 recs
I think a public apology would be enough

The real issue here is not to be petty about it, but to make sure people know that this kind of behavior is not acceptable.

Nothing more or less.

It's either that or Obama has to distance himself from Favreau, see my point above, although sexism is a big part of this, the bare bones fact of this is "Obama speechwriter drunkenly gropes cut out of Obama's Sec. of State."

Anybody think about it like that yet?

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 06:32PM | 0 recs
If someone was groping a cutout of Michelle

Would "he was just drunk" be an OK excuse?

Sorry folks, I'm gonna keep pointing this out.

I will answer the hypothetical question though.

NO.  It would not be an OK excuse.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 05:32PM | 0 recs
Re: If someone was groping a cutout of Michelle

Why not?  If he was groping a cutout of Obama, would we be even having this discussion?  For that matter, why did you use Michelle instead of Barack in your hypothetical?

I honestly have a hard time believing that everyone here doesn't have at least one picture in their past that they would not want to be made public.  The article doesn't even make clear whether he was responsible for posting it.

As an employee of an elected official, he should conduct himself at all times with maturity and decorum, and he should likely be reprimanded for this.  However, judging the person's worth on a single picture completely divorced from context goes way too far for my tastes.  And no, I really don't think that the leaders of the world particularly care what a recent college grad does with a cutout at a private party.

by rfahey22 2008-12-05 06:08PM | 0 recs
He's not just

a recent college grad.

And hypothetically speaking, sure, Barack too.  I picked Michelle cause I wanted people to focus on the sexism here and how they react to it.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 06:10PM | 0 recs
Re: He's not just

So in your opinion, this picture, without any more context whatever, is an insight into the person's soul?

Look, maybe it is, maybe it isn't, but I've seen people do stupid things with cardboard cutouts before and I've also been to parties where people have done stupid things.  I'm not going to pull a Bill Frist and do a snap analysis of what's going on here, particularly since this picture does not seem to have been intended to be seen by anyone other than the partygoers.  And, frankly, I would feel the same way if he groped a cutout of Barack, Michelle, Bill, Hillary, McCain, Palin, Jesus, etc.  It's only how he acts towards real people that is of any concern to me.

by rfahey22 2008-12-05 06:32PM | 0 recs

Would you let Imus off the hook if he interviewed the women basketball players and was polite to them when he did it?

Just a thought.  Just a question.

I agree with you.  I have no doubt in my mind whatsoever that if and when he ever meets Clinton he will be the most respectful person in the world.

Won't that be special.  No.  This is no window into someone's soul.  The poor boy is too shallow for such an appraisal.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 09:10PM | 0 recs

If he were pretending to hump a cutout donkey (Democrats, ya know?), would that be "bestiality"?  No.  The stupid part isn't kissing and fondling a cardboard figure; it's permanently archiving pictures of it on the internet (there's a reason I use pseudonyms online).  And I don't have a problem with his acting stupid at a party -- he shows up to work and writes good speeches, so what business is it of ours what he does in his free time?

by username 2008-12-05 05:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Bingo.

yes - but are there ramifications for being publicly outed for dumb beahaviour, especially when they embarrass your boss - no?  

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Bingo.

The question is whether this sort of thing should "publicly embarrass your boss."  Does his fondling cardboard Hillaries in his free time affects his job performance?  If he shows up to work drunk, or engages in sexual innuendo at the office, then there's a problem.  I don't care if he drinks and sleeps around on weekends, so long as he does his job.  And I think the (faux or vrai) outrage over these things is bad for America.

by username 2008-12-05 06:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Bingo.

um the fact that we, many newspapers and people across the world are discussing this certainly does embarrass his boss.

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 06:12PM | 0 recs
That's for sure

Although I'm not ready to announce the demise of No drama Obama, I am sure if it came to that people would blame Hillary for being Hillary and using her mystical women ways of beguiling young men into outrageous behavior and thus compelling this yo-yo to get drunk and make an ass of himself.

But it surely is a crack in the facade of no drama Obama.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 06:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Bingo.

I think it embarrasses us, or at least it should.  I agree that he shouldn't have posted the pictures on Facebook, because then idiots like Nancy K. would flap their arms and shout online.  Part of being a public figure is keeping such people from wasting your boss's time, but that's all there is to this "scandal."

by username 2008-12-05 06:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Bingo.
Username Thank you for making me laugh so hard.
Your Donkey line is priceless. MOJO
by canadian 2008-12-05 06:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Bingo.

Ugh.....perhaps because we the people are the ones paying his salary? That makes it my business. As far as the picture being a window into someone's soul.......as the saying goes, "a picture is worth a thousand words".

by mztower 2008-12-07 08:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Bingo.

Well, although stupid is as stupid does, and a stitch in time saves nine, those in glass houses shouldn't throw rocks, and there but for the grace of God go I.  Or something.

by username 2008-12-07 03:02PM | 0 recs
what scares me is how

easily so called progressives excuse this.

Me?  My first thought when I saw the pic was "W"...this is a W thing.  It's got frat boy mentality written all over it.

When I read the comments here of some who insist it is just generational; just funny; no big deal and it's just that "old" people don't get the humor, I feel really, really saddened.
Do these young people think they are the first group of young people who have been lewd and crude about women?

My generation did it all the time....and all the time it was the same: "get over it, it's just a bunch of frat brothers being funny while drunk."
Most of the frat boys back then were the W types: guys with/from money who were users and who thought very little about women beyond their breasts, their availability for sex.
Many of us in college back then, went to frat parties when we were freshman......and after that we went elsewhere, got involved; became liberal activists.  But some stayed in the "frat party circle" having been convinced that getting the MRS. degree was their ticket to safety, security.

I thought my generation had taught our sons and daughters the lessons we learned fighting for civil rights; for women's rights.....for everyone's rights.  Apparently not.

I always knew a there would be a segment left over, the W types, who remained frat boys well after the age of 22. I just never thought they would call themselves liberals/progressives.

I don't know much about his guy and his friends but my first impression about them is "shallow, narcissistic jerks."  
I don't want them in any roles in the Obama administration.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-05 07:08PM | 0 recs
Re: what scares me is how

not that i disagree with you...  but who exactly is excusing this?

as said above - its both sexism and simple beer induced male immaturity/stupidity.  cnat it be both?
im not sure what obama will do, but certainly hillary shrugged it off with a rather comical message through her spokesman.

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 07:25PM | 0 recs
Well, there were plenty

of "get over it....it's JUST a drunken male thing" comments in the other thread.  In my view, that's excusing it.

Drunking driving is also simple beer induced stupidity.  

Knowing what it is and excusing it in the same sentence is bothersome.  It's the kind of middle school behavior I expected of W and friends....that macho, aren't we cool and funny and don't we just swagger in how we can mock and insult others.

I am a middle school teacher.  When I see a member of the Obama administration acting the way I know the kids I teach act, I am bothered...a lot.
27 years old is way past middle school.  
If this guy did not have the judgment to know his behavior was disrespectful as well as sexist, sheesh...why the hell is he given so much trust by Obama?  THAT bothers me.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-05 07:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Well, there were plenty
Oh please, now we're comparing drunk driving to this picture?
Drunk driving for one, is illegal, mostly because innocent people get injured or killed because of it.
Groping a cardboard cut out is not illegal and as I said on the other thread, if it had been a picture of Britney Spears or Paris Hilton, we would not be having this conversation.
The only reason some people are up in arms about it is because they want any excuse to bash the president elect or his staff.
by skohayes 2008-12-06 02:14AM | 0 recs
That's because

Britney and Paris aren't Sec. of State.

I can say things about 50 cent I can't say about Obama.

Think about what you're saying.

It might not be drunk driving, but it sends a message.  I will make one point about this picture.  Other frat boys think it's cute and will think "cool, maybe I'll do that to the real thing, and then after I'm done with her I can say 'Gee, I was drunk, I didn't actually hurt any body.'"

I know.  I know.  That would never happen at all.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 03:20AM | 0 recs

The issue is sexism, no?

Britney and Paris aren't Sec. of State.

...and thus their recyclable doppelgangers are less worthy of deferential respect.  Uhh, okay.

I can say things about 50 cent I can't say about Obama.

Really?  What sorts of things?  (Dying to hear this).

Other frat boys think it's cute and will think "cool, maybe I'll do that to the real thing, and then after I'm done with her I can say 'Gee, I was drunk, I didn't actually hurt any body.'"

Right. The photo is likely to inspire more acid attacks in Afganistan, too.

by fogiv 2008-12-06 02:02PM | 0 recs
Well to be honest

Even though for them it wouldn't be disrespectful I wouldn't think it's a great idea to put out the frat party get chicks drunk and fondle them (or worse) message no matter who they are.

Again, I have run into someone who sees nothing wrong with this.  We disagree I guess.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 03:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Well to be honest

Sexism is sexism is sexism, no?  How can you create double standards of which women it is okay to objective and which it isn't?  Who gets to decide which women's cardboard cutouts are worthy of respect and which women's are not?

by Dreorg 2008-12-06 05:49PM | 0 recs
I'm glad

Your comment was recommended on this blog.

It speaks volumes.

This whole thing was just about cardboard.  Your input is invaluable.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 11:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Well, there were plenty

Your cluelessness about understanding what is being said, speaks volumes

by Jjc2008 2008-12-06 04:31AM | 0 recs
We hav a winner

You've hit the nail on the head sko. It's a shame that some people here can't just be honest about how they really feel about Obama. I would have alot more respect for them if they just came right out with how they really felt instead of just using these subtle faux controveries to hide behind.

by venician 2008-12-06 06:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, there were plenty

Yes.  This is exactly like drunk driving.  What a sharp analysis!

by mikeinsf 2008-12-06 06:59AM | 0 recs
Alcohol relaxes inhibitions

Their behavior isn't excused by alcohol, being drunk allowed them to let down their guard and show what they really think.

by Betsy McCall 2008-12-07 05:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I agree you must use absolute discretion if you are in a professional capacity.  While these applications can serve as a great documentation of one's "hilarious hijinks", the downside is that it documents one's hilarious hijinks for everyone to see.  
Though these applications are new, the old mantra, CYA, is ageless.  If you don't want to be embarrased or pubically humiliated by your actions, then refrain from making this stuff so easily obtainable.

Outrage? spare me.  Stupid and tasteless?  Sure.  The only thing I hold against this guy is his lack of discretion being in his professional capacity and obviously smart enough to regulate or control access to his pics.  Dumb move guy.

In the other diary someone proposed that that diarist was mocking overboard outrage calls of sexism.  A few dairies ago from that same diarist, I thought the same thing.  At this point I really wouldn't surprised, in fact I am more sure of it.  

by KLRinLA 2008-12-05 05:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

so then if we both agree that this was dumb and embarrassing to obama, clinton and favreau himself - what's next do you think?  move on?

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Yes.  Just like Hillary is.  In fact, the fact she probably dedicated at most 5 seconds to thinking about this means she has nothing to move on from.

by mikeinsf 2008-12-06 07:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I dont know, but yeah its embarrasing, I'll leave it up to Obama/Clintont to figure it out

by KLRinLA 2008-12-06 11:30PM | 0 recs
well let's consider this

Let's start by asking whether or not we think Imus is actually racist.

In all honesty, I don't think he is.  I think he was a purveyor of stupid and tasteless bullshit about everyone.  And he lacked any discretion whatsoever.

But I don't think he himself was actually racist.


by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 05:39PM | 0 recs
with due respect.

i appreciate your analogy - but i would prefer if we discuss in context of the subject of the diary.  cool?

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:41PM | 0 recs
Re: with due respect.

This person is a troll cg.

Just a heads up.

Don't waste your time.

by spacemanspiff 2008-12-05 05:56PM | 0 recs
But it's the same dynamic

Let the person off the hook for saying and doing racist/sexist stuff cause they themselves aren't really racist/sexist.

I think that about sums it up.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-05 06:02PM | 0 recs
Re: well let's consider this

let's take your strawman and burn it dude, and then go to all the frat houses around America and let them know how they are destroying America and Hillary.  Sound good, good, now take a nap

by KLRinLA 2008-12-06 11:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

If you don't want to be embarrased or pubically humiliated by your actions, then refrain from making this stuff so easily obtainable.

He didn't make it easily obtainable.  One of his friends posted it, not him, hence the "popped up on Facebook for about two hours."

by HEAP 2008-12-06 12:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

True, I don't know everything about it, but you can control who gets to see your pics, but yeah, it's even less of an indictment if he is not intentionally publishing this, but still CYA, it's not like he is not going to potentially be invovled with Hillary.  

by KLRinLA 2008-12-06 11:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

That response from Hillary's spokesman is just classic.

by Steve M 2008-12-05 05:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

yep - i giggled for a few minutes.

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 05:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Well. I have a bit of trouble with the title and what you imply.

Lessons for the Facebook generation?

What lesson is that exactly?

Posting pictures online or getting drunk at parties and having others posting pictures online?

Should we stop drinking if phones are around?

I find it hard to believe most people here haven't done worse things than posing in a suggestive manner with a cardboard cutout.

The difference is that the Facebook generation is also the camara phone generation.

I'm pretty sure if  everybody at the office Xmas dinners  had Facebook  and camara phones regardless of age or this whole Facebook generation thing embarassing and douchey pics WILL pop online.

Drunks will act like drunks. Alcohol doesn't ask for your age.

We went on to talk about how people born in 1990 and after do not know a world without the internet.  Which then changes how everything is done, from education to work.

Everything does change. Especially the way our e personas and the impact they have in the workplace and social settings are percieved.

We DO understand how this works.

Just see it a lot differently than others.

by spacemanspiff 2008-12-05 06:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

im not sure what offends you. could you please elaborate?

as discussed in the other diary - i dont think there is any argument that this was a highly, highly moronic move professionally on the part of favreau.

whether or not he posted the pics, or knew about the pics - he took a picture doing this knowing that he was the speechwriter of a presidential candidate.  drunk or not - i dont care if he is 18 or 48 - dumb, dumb, dumb.

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 06:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.


Why didn't you adress any of the points I brought up in my post?

I'm not offended (takes a lot for that).

You are talking about the Facebook generation and I'm trying to give them a voice.

Favreu was stupid. It was a stupid thing to do regardless of age .

(emphasis mine)

We debated whether or not this was a result of technology and if not caring about the implications of their actions was a generational thing.  

Between the title and this quote it kind of set the tone of the diary for me.

I assure you it's not a generational thing.

by spacemanspiff 2008-12-05 06:27PM | 0 recs
that's a fair assertion.

but the tone of this diary is not meant to condescend younger people.  hell - by nature of the fact that we are bloggers makes us (regardless of age) part of the facebook generation.

that said - the conversation that i had relates to the story and to favreau's actions here.  

a point of note should be that the youth (at least as defined in this meeting) demographic for marketing purposes goes until the age 39.

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 06:41PM | 0 recs
Re: that's a fair assertion.

We see eye to eye on this then. ; )

I'm seeing a lot of that in the comments section while criticizing Favreau's actions. This technological world has no age barriers.

On the dude.

The guy is a moran.

He works for the most higly scrutinized man in the world and he poses ( HE POSED!!!!) while going Chris Matthews on Ellen while his buddy (which has been pointed out as much) is wearing an Obama staff shirt.

I would of loved to have heard the earful he got from Obama.


P-elect must have been pissed and embarassed.

They must be pretty close friends so it's more on a personal level.


Brilliant people do the dumbest things.

by spacemanspiff 2008-12-05 06:54PM | 0 recs
I'm a YOUTH!!

Can't wait to tell my wife....should provide a brilliant excuse for much of my behavior.  ;)

Wish I'd known this factoid before now...only have a few months left to utilize it.

(hiya CG...I miss ya)
(and you too, Space)


by Kysen 2008-12-06 08:09AM | 0 recs
Re: I'm a YOUTH!!

kysen!  great to see ya - i miss you too - something terrible in fact...

but you're right - its funny that i would be regarded as a youth when i am married, mortgage, and kiddied up ;)

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 10:26AM | 0 recs
Re: I'm a YOUTH!!

I agree with CG.

Really miss ya dude.

Hope you're doing good and hope to see you around more.

Be excellent to each other. ;~)

by spacemanspiff 2008-12-06 11:19AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I think that what may be happening is that the semi-anonymity of the internet was due in part to the fact that older generations (those who generally hold supervisory positions in the real world) were not as well-versed in using the internet as younger generations, and so the younger generations could be more open on the internet without professional repurcussions.  As society becomes increasingly more net-savvy, though, people may have to be more guarded in their online activities.

by rfahey22 2008-12-05 07:01PM | 0 recs
I don't care whether

it was posted on the internet or not.
It was a frat boy mentality of crude sexism.
It is what obnoxious males do when they feel threatened by females....mock them.

This has nothing to do with technology.  Keeping this jerk on his staff would not be a smart move by Obama.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-05 07:13PM | 0 recs
great point.

another interesting part of the meeting was that brands and products are increasingly under the microscope by younger generations. holistically understanding how corporate actions are being perceived by younger consumers is now an imperative.

not surprisingly, environmentally-linked notions tend to be treated more urgently these days by young north americans. still, the fact that 1 in 5 teens and young adults are currently placing huge importance on "considering if an item was ethically manufactured" should most definitely be seen as a signal of a new world and consumer imperatives to come. as we as a mass culture start to ask harder and harder questions about our consumer and corporate practices, we can only expect these signals to grow louder and become more a part of full mainstream culture in upcoming years.

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 07:16PM | 0 recs
Re: great point.

That's pretty interesting.  I wonder, though, if it will also encourage more junky marketing, like broadening the definition of "organic" to include more foods that most people wouldn't think would fit that label, dishonestly advertising ethical practices, etc.  Being concerned about those things is only half the battle.

by rfahey22 2008-12-05 07:23PM | 0 recs
Re: great point.

yes - that's part of the concern.  also to paraphrase a bit from the meeting - technology is almost at the saturation point which is changing technology into consumption points - like phones, to shop - etc, etc.

it took something like 25 years for colour TV's to reach a point of 63% ownership in the market.  and it took dvd players 2 years!

by canadian gal 2008-12-05 07:28PM | 0 recs
Thanks for resetting the convo, CG

That being said, this guy is toast. I fail to see how he keeps his job, and frankly I'm not sure that he deserves to. This IS a cautionary tale for the Facebook generation. It was beyond foolish. The question is, will they see it as cautionary, or suppressive?

As far as excusing the sexism, I have come to the conclusion that I am not allowed to - so I won't. If this was racism, I WOULD excuse it, and I have done so an uncounted number of times in the past. Part of being a minority is learning how not to live in a state of constant outrage.

However, this is not my "ism" to dismiss. My feelings in the matter are not germane, because I am not the aggrieved party.

Objectively, I don't believe it is realistic OR healthy to require that everyone exist in a state of moral purity - and no, that's not an exaggeration, it's a literal interpretation of what seems to be becoming a prevailing Progressive meme. Do we ever excuse sexist or racist behavior? I don't think we do, ever. It has become a litmus test, of sorts.

This inflexibility is distinct from trying to teach different behaviors. When dealing with racist people, the path to them being less racist often involves a certain amount of empathy on the victim's part, and an appeal to the aggressor's better angels. Furious condemnation, in my personal experience, does not win minds or hearts.

The truth is, no one really needs to stop being racist or sexist, except in very limited circumstances (like this one). The question isn't can you sink one young man's career, its what message will you send to the fifty young men who you have no leverage over? Does firing this dude reach them, make them reconsider if their behavior is unworthy, or does it piss them off, and give them a reason to justify that behavior?

I think the original Clinton response was perfect - it was wry, gracious and ironic, leaving the perpetrator room to squirm in his relative ungraciousness. There was a teaching moment in it. However, as it has become the story du jour, the response may well end up making a marty of the guy - there are certainly uncomfortable issues of privacy in play, depending on how this got out there.

by Neef 2008-12-05 11:04PM | 0 recs
Any chance there's an example of racism

You felt didn't merit getting outraged about.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 03:22AM | 0 recs
Re: Any chance there's an example of racism

Sorry for the delay, Real Life intruded for a day. But you ask a good question, so I wanted to respond, if belatedly.

Anyway, some minor examples:

At someone's divorce party (an odd affair to begin with), I walk out onto the balcony, 3 or 4 people talking. Out of the blue, one of the ladies tells me she doesn't understand gangster rap, and thinks it's corrupting young blacks. I respond, "I wouldn't really know, my favorite band in high school was Boston". There's some nervous laughter behind me, but she says "no, really".

lol. I said "no, really. I don't listen to it, or haven't since the days of grandmaster flash." I guess she decided I was just being difficult, and stalked off.

It's not uncommon for drunken people to single out the black guy for some instant bonhomie. A few weeks back some drunk actually interrupted a conversation to say "hey brother, give me five" (an extreme case, admittedly). I said, "Hey man, good to see you! Order the table a round of drinks and pull up a chair". Of course this pulled him up short, as he processed what was likely a bigger investment in racial relations than he wanted to make. One of my quicker-witted friends picks up on this and says something to the effect of he'll have something from the top shelf, and the drunk looks like he's panicing a bit. At that point, one of his actual friends comes over to collect him, apologized profusely and they both left the bar.

I am often asked to defend or explain rap, welfare, gang violence, etc.

In each case, what I try to do is deal with the situation minus the racial overtones. Dealing with it as a racial issue puts me on the other team from everyone else. Dealing with it as an issue of rude, ridiculous, or mockable behavior puts the other person on the outside. It gives me the only type of leverage a minority has - the backing of the majority.

by Neef 2008-12-06 11:16PM | 0 recs
In some jobs, the inability to hide

your moral shortcomings is necessary.

I am guessing there have been racists and sexists in every administration and probably still are.  However, to put those traits on public display is unacceptable.....especially in certain jobs.

A person from upper management in some private corporation may belong to a country club that excludes women and minorities.  For the most part no one will know or perhaps even care.

However I guarantee you that in some jobs it matters more than others.  A male or female in education would lose their jobs and license for things others may get away with.....
surely you get why.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-06 04:37AM | 0 recs
Insightful commentary, Neef.

I have nothing to add - and that doesn't happen often.

by Sumo Vita 2008-12-06 03:28PM | 0 recs
Re: he needs to fired.

i keep posting this and am stunned how no else sees that this is only question.  should Favreau be fired or stay on?  

he needs to go. if obama does not fire him, obama is sending a message to every woman in the world that he tolerates this behavior.

this is not about favreau anymore. we know who he is. and he would be fired from most corporations for a picture like this about a senior female executive.  

the question now is - who is Obama?  

by latina 2008-12-06 05:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

This is a stupid conversation. Silliness is not sexism. If this were a female speechwriter, posing with a cardboard cutout of Bill Clinton and grabbing his crotch, no one would be calling this sexist, it would just be someone acting silly. Or hell, if it was still Jon Favreau grabbing cardboard Bill's crotch, that wouldn't be sexism either. Sex is funny, and there's nothing wrong with engaging in risque humor.

by STLSignes 2008-12-06 05:59AM | 0 recs
The litmus test

Someone doing the same thing to a cut out of Michelle Obama.

Do you still feel that it was just silly?

I mean I hate to keep bringing it up, but I really want to know if your assessment applies to all scenarios.

It is only then we can rule out a double standard on this issue.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 06:29AM | 0 recs
Re: The litmus test

Michelle wouldn't give a shit either, although I'm sure there would be a couple of equally ridiculous and sanctimonious diaries around here about it.

by mikeinsf 2008-12-06 07:02AM | 0 recs
Re: The litmus test

Yep, still just silly. Same if it was cardboard cutout of Barack. Or W or Laura Bush or Dick Cheney. Or me (although I'd want to know who's making those cardboard cutouts).

by STLSignes 2008-12-06 07:17AM | 0 recs
Ok. Thanks for an honest answer

But I disagree.

On both or all counts.

by iDemocrat 2008-12-06 03:47PM | 0 recs
Take this picture, for instance.

From a "Women for Change" party in Jacksonville, FL earlier this year.

What if she'd gotten, um, a tad friendlier? Besides, there's not telling exactly what her hidden arm is doing behind that cutout.

by Sumo Vita 2008-12-06 06:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Favreau should be fired.

My sense is that most of the postings saying 'it's no big deal' are being written by guys?

It is a big deal.  It offends me.  I'm a mom and have two daughters.  And the picture makes me sick.

If it becomes a news story on the Today Show or Goodmorning America - it will offend a great deal of people.  So the question isn't if the pic is offensive?  It is.  

We're going to learn a great deal about Obama by how he deals with it.

by latina 2008-12-06 07:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Favreau should be fired.

Why so serious?

Follow the men's lead on this one. It's cardboard. That makes you sick? That's crazy, and not a healthy lifestyle.

by STLSignes 2008-12-06 09:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Favreau should be fired.

Yeah, it does.  And it offends a whole of women too.  

What I don't get is why you and many of the guys on this site are so indignant that the picture is offensive to women?  

It's the same as someone closely linked to Clinton doing something racially offensive to a cut-out of Obama.  

I'm very curious what Obama is going to do? It'll be very telling what kind of man he is.

by latina 2008-12-06 12:59PM | 0 recs
Re:I can explain why some men are indignant.

It's a common and effective way of silencing women when they object to this kind of bigotry.  Just shut up and quit being so emotional/humorless/overly sensitive.  Stop complaining and enjoy what's being done to you.  Sound familiar?  

by half nelson 2008-12-06 01:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Favreau should be fired.

I would say it's offensive to women of a certain generation and cardboard women the world over!

by venician 2008-12-06 02:20PM | 0 recs
you know....

i can count how many times i have gotten good and pissed on the blogs on less than one hand.  but honestly i am tired of your bullshit.  women of a certain age?  fail.

all you do is attack people and really never add much to the discussion save for attacking others (some warranted, some not).  you sir are a troll and i certainly hope that people start treating you accordingly.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 03:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Favreau should be fired.

why go racial?  Why not just reverse the sexual innuendo/acts?  

by KLRinLA 2008-12-07 09:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Favreau should be fired.

Yeah, with that kind of attitude - cardboard women is the only action you're going to be getting, venician dude:D

Really, what so rattles you that the pic affects many women?  Why do you have degrade them further?  

by latina 2008-12-06 02:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

well just to touch on the overall subject of internet shenanigans...

Obviously there are consequences of internet usage, most of them unintentional. Teenagers[ahem, like my brother] are more likely to fall prey to posting inappropriate/dumb pictures of themselves, leaving them open to the dangers of child predators and other weirdos. But you also see the same kind of dumb shit coming from older people too. So its kind of just an internet thing in general, alot of people dont realize how vulnerable the internet can make them or the consequences that come from that.

Its not limited to young people, just people that lack effing common sense:

-Like that woman that caused a young girl to commit suicide because of myspace. here
-lots of youtubing of crimes have led to prison time. [seriously dont broadcast your criminal activity!]here

sooo...to address the incident, uhh...well yeah I wouldn't neccessarily classify it as sexism, just offensive in general. Im sure some men, [somehwere, hopefully] might be offended to see an act like this if the cutout was of their daughter or sister or something. so it also isn't just a act that women are offended by.

As far as what the consequences of this type of foolishness, I dont think its a termination worthy offense. It was a mistake, simply put. Everyone is entitled to one or two silly mistakes, even if they are the speechwriter to the president elect.

[whew! this is a long comment! argh]

by alyssa chaos 2008-12-06 04:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

He should be fired immediately.    

He didn't make a "mistake" either.  What he did was clearly intentional, an implied sexual gesture used specifically to degrade Hillary Clinton as a woman.  Judging from the comments on that other tread, that behavior acceptable to many here.  

Hardly surprising after what went down during the primary.  

by bellarose 2008-12-06 04:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Yeah, totally.  He should be charged with high treason for attempted assination.  Just look at the picture!  He's clearly trying to conjure mind bullets.  That's telekinesis, Holmes.

Get a grip.

by fogiv 2008-12-06 09:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

"Get a grip"

Ohhh, ouch! You sure did put me in my place with that witty retort!

He should be let go, immediately.  Team Obama needs anti-sexual harassment training.  They can start with their buddies on face book and in the so-called progressive blogesphere.  

by bellarose 2008-12-07 07:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

see the thing is when you go overboard in the persecution of a stunt like this, you lose credibility, because this isn't sexism.  virtual sexual assault (assuming the cardboard isn't consentual, but looking at it, I think it is) is virtual sexual assault, it is not sexism.  

I think team mydd needs training in how exploiting vicitimhood loses crediblity over time/the boy who cried wolf

by KLRinLA 2008-12-07 09:10AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Heh.  You wouldn't know wit if it lit your smoke for you.

by fogiv 2008-12-07 07:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

chaos! i agree with of your comment.  with everything that happened during the primary with the media and what not i think people are hyper sensitive to sexism right now.

not sure what the punishment should be though.  he is pretty high-profile and certainly has caused some ahem - discomfort for his boss.  i think sadly that as neef said above he will most certainly not be allowed to stay on - but i may be wrong...

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 04:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

sucks this bullshit is gonna get him fired...faux outrage [off with his head!!] strikes again

by alyssa chaos 2008-12-06 06:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

well i would nt call it faux.  personally - im not sure what i think the punishment should be.  but i know that it was a dumbass move professionally and more importantly - now public.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 06:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

well "over reaction" would have said that better [words are not my forte.]

I'd say suspension is what he gets but if the story reaches mainstream news and blows up, then he loses his job.

I dont really catergorize this as major breaking news, but just based on the some headlines I've seen lately it might get aired.

by alyssa chaos 2008-12-06 06:59PM | 0 recs
What exactly is the

"mistake" here?

Is it that he lost his inhibitions in some beer and allowed his own ageist misogyny to think for him? Or that he let people take pictures while he was acting like a middle schooler?  Or that his choice of friends includes idiots who think posting this on the net is cool?

If he was a 14 year old with no life experiences, I would forgive on all accounts.  But he is 26 year with more experiences than most......let's face it, he's in the inner circle of the president elect of the USA.  If this last year of campaigning did not teach this guy a thing, then what the hell will?

by Jjc2008 2008-12-06 06:17PM | 0 recs
Re: What exactly is the

The actual content of the pose isn't the mistake.  Sure it's distateful and not classy, but it isn't a big deal, in an of itself.  The fact that it hit teh tubes, that he is an Obama speechwriter, and that he potentially had some control over the release of this photo, is the big deal.

You know why?  Because if he wasn't an Obama speech writer, we would've never heard about this.

by KLRinLA 2008-12-07 09:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

"i think people are hyper sensitive to sexism right now."

So calling out bigotry now = hyper sensitivity?  


by bellarose 2008-12-06 04:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

my opinion is that this is not bigotry.

bigotry is:

A bigot is a person who is intolerant of opinions, lifestyles or identities differing from his or her own, and bigotry is the corresponding attitude or mindset. Bigot is often used as a pejorative term to describe a person who is obstinately devoted to prejudices, especially when these views are either challenged, or proven to be false or not universally applicable or acceptable.

not that this isnt gross and more importantly highly, highly unprofessional.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 04:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

What else could it be but "intoleran[ce] of opinions, lifestyles or identities differing from his or her own" ? Clearly he doesn't respect Clinton, and he's willing to let it show.

by Beet 2008-12-06 07:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

honestly - do you think he gave this that much thought?  i mean - how many times have you flipped someone the bird whilst driving.  you just react to things sometimes.

listen the guy is an utter doofus for taking not one, but 2 pictures (that we know of) that will certainly embarrass his boss, and possibly stall a promising career in politics.  its sad really.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 07:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Does it make it any less disturbing if he gave it little thought?

If he didn't give this much though- which is definitely a probability, that only means his derogatory actions- derogatory in a way that could only have been toward a woman- came so easily and subconsciously to him and his friends that they didn't even have to think about it.

That doesn't make it less offensive or disturbing.

It doesn't make this guy a monster, but it does make him an active participant in a sexist culture.

What bothers me most about this picture is that they're clearly at a party and no one at the party objected- or more likely, someone at the party probably thought it distasteful but didn't feel empowered to speak up. I'm thinking of the young woman in the background.

This pains me because it's MY generation.

by Beet 2008-12-06 07:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

yes of course it matters.  im fairly certain that ive said and done things (probably even in the last month) that i wouldnt want plastered all over the newspaper and internets.

while i dont necessarily agree with your reading on the picture and its context - i do agree that it was remarkably idiotic to take the pictures to begin with.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 07:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

You dont agree with my reading of the picture and its contents? Why not? Im curious.

Also uh, if you dont mind... what have you done recently that compares to this? I wont judge. Im just interested.

Maybe I'm just out of touch?

by Beet 2008-12-06 07:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

i dont think the picture on its own is sexist.  if the guy showed a pattern of this kind of behaviour i might feel differently.  but i have nothing to base it on at this point.

do i find it vile?  yep.

now as to the other part of your comment...  im a fairly private person and while your offer is tempting, ill keep it that way. (hey you never know if it will come back to bite me in ass like favreau ;)

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 08:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

This isn't just about "the guy" and whether he is a good person or bad person.

This is about society and what is accepted and tolerated in it.

If this was a picture of some Hillary staffers playing blackface or hanging gold necklaces and basketball jerseys over an Obama cut out you could bet they would be gone in an instant.

This picture is upsetting because it falls into a pattern of sexism that comes up again and again in our culture. And as long as it's tolerated it will continue. I do not believe this is an isolated incident in our culture as a whole. That is the problem.

by Beet 2008-12-06 08:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

i dont disagree with anything is your comment save for "what this is about."  it is about this guy and not whether he is good or bad - but rather has he embarrassed himself, obama and hilary enough to get the boot.  it appears that this story is starting to gain traction sadly and if it 'hits' we both know what this means.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 08:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

It has already hit online.

In any case, I don't see how a judgment of whether he has "embarassed himself" can be rendered separately from the a judgment on the content of what he did. I don't support firing people just because there is some picture of them getting drunk.

by Beet 2008-12-06 08:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

well of course its the context of how he has embarrassed himself.  just that i dont see the context in quite the same way as others.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 08:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I think you are too kind. Way too kind. It's because people are too kind that sexism allows itself to be perpetuated.

The dirty little secret about the civil rights movement in the United States is that one reason why racism fell out of favor was the threat of riots. Such as the 1992 Los Angeles riot.

Women can't riot because they don't have the physical strength, and so must push as hard as possible in other ways.

His guy's behavior is not acceptable for speechwriter to the President.

by Beet 2008-12-06 09:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

"The dirty little secret about the civil rights movement in the United States is that one reason why racism fell out of favor was the threat of riots. Such as the 1992 Los Angeles riot."

I'll be open-minded and remain merely skeptical, but you need to provide a lot of evidence to prove the point above.

"Women can't riot because they don't have the physical strength"

Well that's just BS.  You are arguing that all women, 100% of them, are too physically weak to do anything about sexism.  Right.  Do you see the irony here?  

by ProgressiveDL 2008-12-07 04:11AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I'll be open-minded and remain merely skeptical, but you need to provide a lot of evidence to prove the point above.

Before the riots:

Due to heavy media coverage of the arrest, the trial received a change of venue from Los Angeles County to a newly constructed courthouse in the predominantly white city of Simi Valley in neighboring Ventura County. No Simi Valley residents served on the jury, which was drawn from the nearby San Fernando Valley, a predominantly white and Hispanic area, and composed of ten whites, one Hispanic, and one Asian.[8] The prosecutor, Terry White, was black.[9][10] On April 29, 1992, the seventh day of jury deliberations, the jury acquitted all four officers of assault and acquitted three of the four of using excessive force. The jury could not agree on a verdict for the fourth officer charged with using excessive force...Based on this testimony and the previously unseen segment of the videotape, the officers were acquitted on almost all charges.

After the riots:

In the aftermath of the riots, pressure mounted for a retrial of the officers, and federal charges of civil rights violations were brought against the officers. As the first anniversary of the acquittal neared, the city tensely awaited the decision of the federal jury; seven days of deliberations raised fears of further violence in the event of another "not guilty" verdict. The LAPD Captain in charge of the division hired a press agent, thus avoiding direct contact with news media after the riots. (source: Reader's Digest[issue # needed])

The decision was read in an atypical 7:00 a.m. Saturday court session on April 17, 1993. Two officers --Officer Laurence Powell and Sergeant Stacey Koon-- were found guilty, while officers Theodore Briseno and Timothy Wind were acquitted. Mindful of accusations of sensationalist reporting in the wake of the first trial and the resulting chaos, media outlets opted for more sober coverage, which included calmer on-the-street interviews.[26] Police were fully mobilized with officers on 12-hour shifts, convoy patrols, scout helicopters, street barricades, tactical command centers, and support from the National Guard and Marines.[27][28] These precautionary measures proved unnecessary.

All four of the officers involved have since quit or have been fired from the LAPD.

The threat of economic destruction forced the establishment's hand into an unconstitutional double jeopardy. Nothing could be clearer than this. The retrial was not a result of the "generosity" of the authorities, which after all had permitted this monstrous beating to take place, it was because the authorities were afraid of what would happen to them if they did not discipline the officers.

Really the same can be said about the civil rights movement of the 1960s. The government was afraid of people like Malcolm X and black radicalism. Think Baader-Meinhof x 100,000, in the period of the Cold War where the Russians were still successfully expanding their propaganda and surpassing the US in missiles. Of course now we know that the domestic red groups in Western Europe were funded by the KGB up the wazoo. One can imagine what a nightmare a domestic, racial insurgency would have been for the United States. The French Algerian experience was not far from the mind back then.

All of a sudden comes this black preacher (Martin Luther King Jr.) who is talking reconciliation and fulfilling America's purported values rather than attacking them. One can imagine what a gift he was for liberalism, and why even illiberal liberals with a mind to national security would want to support him.

Well that's just BS.  You are arguing that all women, 100% of them, are too physically weak to do anything about sexism.  Right.  Do you see the irony here?  

Of course women can do something about sexism. The question is will they? I am not ruling out a riot, however that is not the first thing that came to mind.

by Beet 2008-12-07 07:43AM | 0 recs
Where to start

First of all, your link between the Rodney King riots, and the civil rights movement, is tenuous at best, but we'll get back to that.

You do realize that, during the 60's, white people rioted also? Perhaps you remember a small brouhaha about William Ayers and the Weathermen. Or Kent State. Or the '68 convention. Given enough provocation, people will riot, not just Black people, as you posit. Whites will riot, Hispanics will riot.

Your position seems to be that had King not come along, a government motivated by fear alone would have made changes to improve civil rights. That's a tough case to prove. In fact, it is MUCH easier to show examples of government cracking down on violent rebellion, than it is to find examples of government acceding to it. Branch Davidian, and Philadelpha's MOVE organization come to mind, both militant groups coincidentally dying in flaming buildings. Where ARE the Black Panthers nowadays - how successful have they been?

You are essentially making the same case that terrorists make, the case that fear, unrest and anarchy will motivate a government to positive social change. I would have to ask you for some examples of this. While you might like use the Rodney King case, the truth of the matter is that many whites also saw Kings treatment as unjust. Was this a case of fear, or a case of a pricked social conscience?

Fear of race riots certainly didn't stop the OJ prosecution. Woefully inadequate prosecution and police work got OJ off, not a fearful government. Were some of the jurors motivated by a racist fear of "blacks burning shit up?". Possibly, but this has nothing to do with the actions of the government.

On the other hand, MLK and Ghandi stand out as examples where non-violent protest moves the populace, and therefore the government.

Minorities do not force majorities to action, this is what being a minority means, you are NOT in power. The civil rights victories of the 60's weren't proof of the fear of "the blacks", they were proof that a vast number of white Americans had the courage and moral fiber to accept radical change in service of something they knew to be right. It was a triumph of the human spirit, not the failure you make it out to be.

by Neef 2008-12-07 08:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Where to start

You do realize that, during the 60's, white people rioted also? Perhaps you remember a small brouhaha about William Ayers and the Weathermen. Or Kent State. Or the '68 convention.

Yes. Most of those were riots to pull America out of Vietnam. And guess what? America pulled out of Vietnam. And the CIA was worried and concerned about those groups as well. Look at the news today. The Greek Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister have offered their RESIGNATIONS over riots over the shooting of a student. Government takes these things very seriously. If it can't keep order where does its legitimacy come from?

Your position seems to be that had King not come along, a government motivated by fear alone would have made changes to improve civil rights.

No that is not what I am saying at all. I am saying had King not come along Malcolm X would have been the 'civil rights' leader and the whole 1960's would have been much more racially violent, even than it was. You could have seen an Algerian/Sunni Iraq-type insurgency and many government policemen, and national guardsmen may have lost their lives. And this would have been a HUGE propaganda coup for the USSR. They would have gone to Asia and Africa and Latin America and said 'look! those capitalists are racist, they even oppress their own blacks.'

It was a triumph of the human spirit, not the failure you make it out to be.

Neef, you phrases like 'triumph' and 'failure' of the human spirit do not explain why the civil rights movement occurred exactly when it did and why it succeeded despite the nation's history of racism.

Look at the logic downthread. I wrote: "This guy has engaged in an openly misogynistic act, and has been found out. Of course he should be fired. To keep him on as the President's head speechwriter-- the voice of the President, so to speak, whom everyone knows to have no problem with misogyny, is disgusting."

And what was the response from the poster defending the establishment? He/she wrote:

Too bad. He ain't going to be fired. You're going to have to live with it.

Not a "triumph of the human spirit". No "pricked social conscience." obama4presidente simply informed me, that Obama was in power, I am not, and therefore what is moral or immoral is immaterial. The Power will make the Decision and that is that. And obama4presidente is 100% correct.

by Beet 2008-12-07 08:53AM | 0 recs
We have very different worldviews then

Yes. Most of those were riots to pull America out of Vietnam. And guess what? America pulled out of Vietnam.

You are quick to assume causality in that situation. Do you forget the horrors that the nascent war journalism brought home to the average American? Nowhere in your analysis have you mentioned the collective conscience of the populace, our (to my mind) limited appetite for atrocity and violence. It seems you see the mechanics of appeasement as the primary mover of policy, to which I can only restate my disagreement.

Legitimacy of government does NOT come from "keeping order", although you might make that case for totalitarian regimes (but are they legitimate)? Certainly in a democracy, legitimacy comes from mirroring, to as great an extent as possible, the collective will of the populace. Order is certainly a component of this, it's one of the things we task our government with. However, moral behavior is also a key component, or at least an expression of morality that mimics the popular zeitgeist.

No that is not what I am saying at all. I am saying had King not come along Malcolm X would have been the 'civil rights' leader and the whole 1960's would have been much more racially violent, even than it was

Certainly it would have been more violent, the question is would it have been more effective? Would Malcome X have achieved what MLK and LBJ did?

Neef, you phrases like 'triumph' and 'failure' of the human spirit do not explain why the civil rights movement occurred exactly when it did and why it succeeded despite the nation's history of racism.

To be clear, I believe that the civil rights movement is exactly a triumph of the human spirit. Through a combination of courage on the part of blacks, and equivalent moral courage on the part of whites, a change was made.

The view that civil rights were the result of "angry blacks and fearful whites" is deeply troubling, not to mention of questionable accuracy. There is no shortage of regimes that evolve based on internecine violence rather than collective wisdom. Darfur and Somalia come to mind. I, for one, do not place the US in that category.

And given the otherwise admirable clarity of your writing (though I disagree with much of it), your last paragraph is disappointingly bitter and reason-free.

by Neef 2008-12-07 09:48AM | 0 recs
Re: We have very different worldviews then

Bitter and reason-free? The basic question, Neef, is this.

If there is someone more powerful than you, doing something that you know is wrong, and you have tried to reason with him, and his reply is "I don't really care if what I am doing is wrong, I am just going to keep doing it,"

what is the correct response?

Is it to continue to try and talk? To give up completely? Or do something that would give you a little leverage over him? Like maybe threaten to pull out of a business deal, threaten to sue, or even (as in the case of the LA riots) destroy some property? This is a completely open-ended question. I would never advocate violence against persons, but other than that I am really open to all possibilities. Is that a bitter and reason-free question?

Certainly it would have been more violent, the question is would it have been more effective? Would Malcome X have achieved what MLK and LBJ did? ... The view that civil rights were the result of "angry blacks and fearful whites" is deeply troubling, not to mention of questionable accuracy. There is no shortage of regimes that evolve based on internecine violence rather than collective wisdom. Darfur and Somalia come to mind. I, for one, do not place the US in that category.

I don't believe I have fully explained the nuance of my argument. MLK and LBJ did great, great things for this country. The two of them were basically in the middle and defended America against white and black extremists alike.

But their work was lubricated by the threat (and in a few cases the reality) of black extremism and racial violence, and behind that, the threat of communist propaganda and communist advantage over any violent racial conflict within the US. How much was it lubricated? We will never know. But if you understand how much MLK Jr.'s rhetoric and presence helped whites to (1) save face, (2) avoid conflict, (3) look like America was upholding its ideals, then it is very likely to have had a strong impact.

However, moral behavior is also a key component, or at least an expression of morality that mimics the popular zeitgeist.

I never said that moral behavior could not be a component of government legitimacy. But keeping order is the BASIC component that all governments must first establish. Without that, they have nothing. Not all legitimate governments are moral in their behavior. In China, the government is openly oppressive but has an implicit "compact with the people" to deliver economic growth and stability in exchange for power.

by Beet 2008-12-07 10:10AM | 0 recs
Re: Where to start

Fear of race riots certainly didn't stop the OJ prosecution.

Riots were never in question for the OJ trial because the average black person does not live like OJ and would not know people like the Simpsons. OJ was rich, celebrity, and privileged-- and everyone knew it. The question was 'can a rich, celebrity, privileged black guy gain the advantages of his wealth, celebrity and privilege in court just as a rich, celebrity, privileged white guy would?' And the answer was yes.

It was a celebrity story and didn't directly impact on average black people's everyday lives, unlike the Rodney King case, which was about the legitimacy of the police officers enforcing the laws within their neighborhoods.

by Beet 2008-12-07 09:06AM | 0 recs

lol, yeah - If <X> then Blacks will riot.

It's how we keep yall in line.

Good grief.

by Neef 2008-12-07 05:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Riots?

It worked, didn't it?

I had an acquaintance from Texas who lives near some minorities that he was stocking up on ammunition prior to the election because he thought that if Obama was ahead in the polls and lost, there would be riots, and that it would help people like Louis Farrakhan.

I'm not saying it decided the election but it was certainly somewhere in the back of many people's minds.

by Beet 2008-12-07 07:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Yes, it's bigotry.  His intolerance of a powerful woman is expressed through sexual mockery and degradation.  

I wonder if you'd be downplaying this so much if a Republican speechwriter did the same thing to a mock up of Michelle Obama or Nancy Pelosi.

by bellarose 2008-12-07 07:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Maybe I'm coming at this from a different generational perspective than a lot of posters (at 37), but to me this just seems like the dumbassery of youth - like sticking your bong in a street-facing window sill during a party or staying in a mosh pit after you get elbowed in the face and your lip is bleeding - rather than some sort of personality-defining character flaw.

I lived in an apartment in my 20s where we had a cut-out of Darth Vader in the living room.  Every party, someone would dress him up.  For Mardi Gras, he'd be wearing beads.  For Cinqo de Mayo, a sombrero and a Mexican blanket. etc.  Over the years, he ended up wearing one of my lesbian roommate's strap-ons, a Victoria's Secret lingerie set, my leather harness and vest, and other random accoutrements.

Was that sexist?  I'm pretty sure that the sex-positive lesbian sci-fi geek couple responsible would laugh in the face of anyone asserting that.  I'm also pretty sure that there are a few dozen photos of various people posing with Darth over the years in his get-ups.  I'd hate to think that one of my friends would have been labeled the way people are labeling this guy.  It seems so hyperreactive to me.

by Dreorg 2008-12-06 06:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

great comment.  a few things though....

firstly - why do people keep calling the guy a youth?  he is 27 years old and just been named chief speechwriter for the white house.  seriously i am finding this line of thought troubling.

secondly - while your antics with darth, sound - um, lively and fun - you did not post them to your facebook account whilst being in a highly public position - or put another way - when your boss explicitly asked you to submit all things on the intertubes lest they be embarrassing to him - dont take a picture grabbing the SOS' boob. no?

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 06:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Just to play devil's advocate, the article doesn't make clear that he uploaded the pictures - it seems quite vague on that point.  

As for the youth thing, maybe it's generational or based on our own personal experiences - I'm 29 but only got out into the real world at 26, after finishing with graduate school, and I barely consider myself an 'adult' due to the fact that I had few adult responsibilities before then.  There were plenty of stupid parties full of immature people in those years, despite the fact that some of the partygoers were quite accomplished, on paper, in their professional lives.

by rfahey22 2008-12-06 06:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

true it is vague and i tried to hunt down that info - but no one seems to have reported on whether he put them up or someone else.

hey - im 34 - and have two kids.  but i also consider myself a child with way too much love for kicks (running shoes), candy and wasting time.

unfortunately - as much as i view myself as a kid - im not one.  and while i like to party as much the next gal (or guy), i certainly wouldnt let someone take a picture of me doing something potentially incredibly embarrassing to my public-figure boss.  and also i think that's kind of besides the point.  he is the frackking chief speechwriter for the president of the united states.  

what bothers me is that people are painting him as if he is some kid or frat boy.  he has worked in politics for 4, yes 4 years and allowed himself to be photographed publicly grabbing the future SOS boobage.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 07:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I won't disagree that talent often doesn't move in lockstep with maturity, and I also agree that some form of punishment is in order.  I guess my comment was directed at this idea, which seems to animate some of the comments here, that the person should essentially have his career destroyed over his antics with a cardboard cutout.  I don't think many people would disagree that maturity increases with age and that 27 is still an age at which someone can learn from a mistake like this, so I think termination is probably not warranted unless the person is a creep in real life.

by rfahey22 2008-12-06 08:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

i agree with you...  but i dont know really what, outside of termination is a suitable punishment.  if this thing explodes in the MSM - i dont see how obama has any other choice.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 08:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Well, if it becomes a p.r. problem, then maybe he would have to be let go, but I don't think we're there yet - Obama and Clinton are in the best position to assess the damage.  I would expect him to issue a heartfelt apology to Clinton and to receive a severe tongue-lashing from someone (maybe Rahm, he seems suited to that sort of thing), and they should make it clear to him that any more antics would result in his immediate termination.  Maybe they should make him undergo some sensitivity training, too.  There are probably a lot of ways to make his life unpleasant short of termination, and that's probably fairer to everyone than publicly firing him and making him walk around with the "disgraced speechwriter" tag for the rest of his career.  

by rfahey22 2008-12-06 08:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

well - no matter what happens:

"Nothing is so admirable in politics as a short memory."

John Kenneth Galbraith

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 08:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Oh, I agree fully that he's a dumbass, and that both he and whoever posted the photo online showed incredibly poor judgment.  I also wouldn't have let anyone in a position of authority over me see a photo of me and Darth.

Re: the youth thing, I was sort of riffing off of your definition of youth above (a marketing demographic I still barely fit into).

I guess my overriding thought is that I don't really think it is fair to string the guy up as some sort of unrepentant sexist based on a dumb photo with a cut out at a party.  I have zero problem with him being outed for poor judgment, but I find the rhetoric I've seen that goes something along the lines of "clearly he's a woman-hating potential rapist fratboy" disturbing in its vehemence.

by Dreorg 2008-12-06 07:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Ok then why is he doing it? What's the basis of this "fun"? It's disturbing that some Obama staffers have a Hillary cut out begin with which they obviously treat like a voodoo doll.

by Beet 2008-12-06 07:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Yeah, froo-it of the dev-eel.  Root of al eve-eel.

Nice work, Troll Ferguson.

by fogiv 2008-12-06 10:05PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I think we need to point out that the term "youth" absolutely applies to an older age than it used to.  Because people are living with their parents after college (out of choice!), pursuing more advanced degrees, and forced to spend more time in jobs that provide "experience" but no money, there is a very different expectation of that age group.  A 27-year old 20 years ago would be 5+ years into their career track; not so today.  Doesn't excuse what he did, at all, but he is absolutely still a youth, by today's standards.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-12-07 04:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

A guy posing with a Darth Vader cut up dressed up Victoria's Secret lingerie set? Why the heck would anyone see that as sexist? It's very funny!

But this is different. The guy has an "Obama staff", and he is clearly doing inappropriate things to Clinton. Clinton is the butt of a hostile joke here, and the only way you could think it was funny is if you shared in that hostility towards her. It's a way of tearing down her professionalism, her age, trying to force her into being a little drinking whore just like some of this guy's buddies I'm sure.

by Beet 2008-12-06 07:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

I just cannot believe how much people are making of this... The US may be heading into an economic depression.. It is likely that 1.5 million people will lose their jobs in the next few months..

And this is what is of interest around here?

By the way: he ain't getting fired.

by obama4presidente 2008-12-06 07:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

ya think?  please reread the article cited in the diary and then please explain why.  just a kid having fun in his own time?

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 07:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.

Canadian Gal, I got to say I take exception to your telling me what to do like some school teacher! Whats that all about?

by obama4presidente 2008-12-06 07:59PM | 0 recs
schoolteacher huh?

you made a comment and im asking you to explain your position based on the content of the diary.  in particular, you said he is not being fired.  yet:

Question No. 58 in the transition team vetting document for the Obama White House asks that applicants: "Please provide the URL address of any websites that feature you in either a personal or professional capacity (e.g. Facebook, My Space, etc.)"

Question No. 63 asks that applicants "please provide any other information ... that could ... be a possible source of embarrassment to you, your family, or the President-Elect."

i would like to hear why you think this.

by canadian gal 2008-12-06 08:06PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

Don't be silly! There is nothing in those questions that says he HAS to be fired! Most people would have a website with a URL nowadays.. I mean you do! I do! So what? We are not going to be hired because we have websites or are on facebook? And question 63 asks for information but the fact that there is any information that has caused some embarassment to the president elect does not mean that of necessity the person will not be hired. Its basically just asking for a full disclosure but doesn't mean the person will not be hired...Many of the nominees will have things that are potential sources of embarassment (certainly to themselves) but that doesn't mean they won't be nominated..Look at Holder! I mean was his behavior regarding the Clinton Rich pardon appropriate? Not really and he has admitted as much. Is it going to cause some embarassment when he is asked about it in the confirmation hearings by republicans? Doubtlessly. But he's still going to be nominated (and confirmed).

You're being really naive in seemingly trying to stretch a few questions on an application form to mean that there is no discretion utilized in interpreting the answers..

I am really not interested in discussing this any further... its a complete waste of time.. The guy will not be fired. Moreover, he should not be fired. His action while stupid and unprofessional, and embarassing to himself, his credibility, and to Obama does not rise to the level of requiring an immediate and automatic firing. Had he groped Hillary herself he of course would be fired. What this guy did basically leaves it to Obama to make a decision and I simply do not believe he is required to or will fire him... If he barely knew the guy he might fire him but lets get real... This guy wrote his speeches for years.. very important speeches and he did a great job... He's not going to fire him over this and I'll tell you why: he doesn't have to....Its just not a big story.

The big story is of course that 533,000 people lost their jobs, that millions more may lose them in the next few months, that 1 in 10 americans can't make their mortgage payment.

I'm not sure if up there in Canada you're not realizing the severity of this recession but here in DC I'm seeing A LOT of stores going out of business.. This is what people are interested in and not in spending hours and days discussing this guy's putting his arm around a Clinton paper cutout in a sexist manner.

by obama4presidente 2008-12-06 08:36PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

This guy has engaged in an openly misogynistic act, and has been found out. Of course he should be fired. To keep him on as the President's head speechwriter-- the voice of the President, so to speak, whom everyone knows to have no problem with misogyny, is disgusting. Perhaps his insensitivity to women is why Obama nearly lost it in the primary.

Stop trying to hang the thread of lost jobs as a bludgeon over our heads. It won't work. We could lose every job in the country and that still wouldn't make sexism okay. Jobs are a separate matter and will be dealt with separately.

Your moralizing is offputting. This guy should not be speechwriter and that's that.

by Beet 2008-12-06 09:28PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

Too bad. He ain't going to be fired. You're going to have to live with it.

by obama4presidente 2008-12-06 09:34PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

Of course I will have to live with the bludgeon of sexism on society, obama4presidente. But then again,  that is nothing unusual.

by Beet 2008-12-06 09:36PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

"the bludgeon of sexism"! o the drama!

I read your posts.. you're just another frustrated Hillary supporter who needs to deal with the fact that Hillary lost and is working for Obama.. you guys just can't move on! Its unreal! She's dealt with it which is why she ain't going to resign due to outrage over the speech writer...take a page from your hero.

(by the way you're wrong: had she not voted for the war she'd be president elect right now.. )

by obama4presidente 2008-12-06 09:43PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

It isn't drama, obama4presidente, it's history. You said it yourself; I may be right, but he will not be fired and I will just have to "live with it." In the end, Power is all that matters.

And in any case, sexism is, at the last estimation, derived from men's physical strength to literally bludgeon women into submission. How do you think the male advantage was garnered to begin with?

Hillary has, unfortunately, relinquished her independence in exchange for a higher position. I do not fault her for that; we would all do the same. Unfortunately, she has no more power to overturn the bludgeon of sexism than anyone else.

by Beet 2008-12-06 09:48PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

Fair enough. There are degrees of sexism and I am not sure this one should rank that high but I hear you.

by obama4presidente 2008-12-11 07:09PM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

Sorry, but misogyny means there is hatred or contempt for women.  There is no way you can extrapolate this as a hateful act, sorry.  And as for contempt, the only way to really believe that is if you think this was meant primarily to discredit Senator Clinton's talent, experience, or skills.  If so, fine, but we differ there.

"Your moralizing is offputting. This guy should not be speechwriter and that's that."

Also, this is your second unintentionally ironic quote of the day.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-12-07 04:22AM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

If this is not a hateful act, what is it? Just a little fun? Because Hillary Clinton, a 60-year old woman dressed up in a business suit, is such an attractive figure for young men such as this speechwriter and his friend to pretend to smooch around with?

No. Obviously they were mocking Clinton, her unattractiveness; the fact that she was not like their friends. That she was somehow too old and serious. It is basically hostile and contemptuous, not to mention unprofessional.

Also, this is your second unintentionally ironic quote of the day.

obama4presidente tried 3 tactics during my discussion with him/her

1- tried to throw out a red herring that because of the economic crisis the whole discussion is illegitimate.
2- tried to use the might makes right argument (although he was correct on this one)
3- tried to ad homineim attack me based on a reading of my past posts.

Never did he/she actually attempt to engage in the issue.

by Beet 2008-12-07 08:23AM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

"If this is not a hateful act, what is it?"

You answer your own question with this:  

"Obviously they were mocking Clinton"

Yes, it was foolish and inappropriate.  Maybe even mean-spirited.  But I don't see it as a hateful act.

"Never did he/she actually attempt to engage in the issue."

Fair enough.  Call them on their evasion without resorting to condemnation.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-12-07 10:01AM | 0 recs
Re: schoolteacher huh?

I can't imagine he thought this would ever be an issue.  He probably doesn't even remember taking it.  I doubt he sits around and reminisces about it: "Man...remember that time we got a picture taken of me groping that Clinton cutout at that party?  That was so great."  What, is he Chris Farley on the Chris Farley Show?

by ProgressiveDL 2008-12-07 04:19AM | 0 recs

I know a guy who never thought that as a 25 year old, flirting with an 18 year old female would lose his job for him either.  

But he was a teacher.  She was a student.

Hello, if this guy is not bright enough to understand by the age of 27 that some jobs, the public ones, require more discretion than others, why the hell is he on the Obama team?

And please this is the same kind of crap progressives abhorred from the frat boy mentality of the W administration.  Sheesh, I cannot believe how progressives are so adamant about making obnoxious disrespect and sexism OK because it comes from a progressive.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-07 05:20AM | 0 recs
I was with you for 3 of your 4 paragraphs.

1+2) A teacher would and should lose his job.

3) Yes he's a moron, and perhaps he should pay "moron tax".

But you last paragraphs is disturbing. I don't appreciate racist behavior, but I have some empathy and understanding of it. I can see the nuance.

The extraordinarily black and white position alluded to in your final paragraph strikes me as not very Progressive in and of itself. How does a party based (presumably) on being open to ideas survive when summary judgment becomes the norm?

You seriously can't even imagine why someone would take a different stance on this? If you can't imagine the thought process, how can you be a positive force in changing it? "Hang them all", is not an option available to you, so how do you begin to fix things?

Let us be honest here. If a plague were released that killed only sexist, racist, classist, ageist, homophobic, etc. people - would you feel safe in having it released? How many of us reading this would survive? I know I have some sexist thought patterns, and I have certainly see somewhat racist comments from the very people arguing against sexism (and we won't even go into the reaction to Prop 8's black vote).

I'm sure if I had a mind to, I could unearth a fairly strong strain of ageism in this thread ("well, he was young so they're stupid"). The reason no one has made it an issue is because no one in this thread cares. If someone DID care, they'd have a case that we were all stereotyping fairly heavily.

I am not one who believes we will ever reach perfection, and by that I mean no sexisms, racisms, ageisms, heightisms, etc. The theory that Progressives should reject or destroy anyone who suffers from one of these behavioral flaws is one that dooms the Progressive movement.

Teach them, sure. But this "disgusting!", "off with his head!" stuff, for every infraction, is just out of line. It's not like he buried a woman in the ground up to her neck and stoned her, or dragged an old man to death behind a pickup.

by Neef 2008-12-07 06:18AM | 0 recs
Let's see

Because I cannot imagine that someone who claims to be opened minded and accepting but is not calls themselves liberal, I am closed minded?  Is that what you are saying?

Are you saying I should accept racists and sexists behavior or accept them as being human? Because no where did I imply any desire to rid the earth of anyone.   Where in my post did I call for the elimination of those with views different than mine?

Because I do not understand their contradiction in behavior and belief, you see me as the one with the problem?  Explain please. Is it wrong to admit I do not get it?

I complain about ageism all the time. In this case age is being used to excuse and rationalize not deny or defeat.  Yes, some in here have been over and false generalizing about young people, no doubt.  Often here, there is an over/false generalization about older people, about men, about women, about atheists, about Christians, about blacks, about whites.  Humans false generalize all the time. I call people on it when appropriate.
In this thread, ageism is not the issue.  Sexism is.  

by Jjc2008 2008-12-07 08:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Let's see

Because I cannot imagine that someone who claims to be opened minded and accepting but is not calls themselves liberal, I am closed minded?

In my opinion, yes.

The first thing to ask yourself is, who thinks they are close minded?? Do you think racists have a self-image consistent with sheet wearing child-lynchers? Don't you think even virulent racists love their kids, their wives, their dogs?

In fact, I could make the case that such a racist would be indistinguishable from a saint, until both were in the presence of Blacks. Feel free to substitute, "gays" and "women" for Blacks, but the point is the same.

I have known people who grew up only seeing Black people on TV. Every single thing they knew about this culture they learned through a series of warped filters. They learned that Blacks were violent, and lazy, and...well, you know the drill.

However, these people sill lead three dimensional lives, they can be accepting of other cultures, and other lifestyles. The additional condition you impose is that they are accepting of every culture and every lifestyle, immediately.

I've read of religions where the parents withhold secular medical care from children, on the basis of their faith. Are you good with that? Can you honestly NOT be judgmental about that (I can't)? What about ritual mutilation, are you good with that?

If you can't accept these things does that make you a bigot? I think it would. In fact, you may be a virulent bigot who has simply not discovered her limits yet.

Yes, some in here have been over and false generalizing about young people, no doubt.  Often here, there is an over/false generalization about older people, about men, about women, about atheists, about Christians, about blacks, about whites.  Humans false generalize all the time. I call people on it when appropriate.

"I call people on it when appropriate"? Really? Think about where you're coming from here, what makes your "what's appropriate" yardstick the Atomic Clock of Morality? Did you call people on their clear disdain of "frat boys" (I pledged in college), or did you judge that "appropriate" disdain?

by Neef 2008-12-07 09:03AM | 0 recs
So because I did not

call out every outrage in one comment, I have no right to call out any outrage?

Whatever.  You are trivializing what my point was and honestly I find your comments condescending.

But have a nice day.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-07 10:35AM | 0 recs
I generally don't

waste a half page trivializing arguments, I can do it much more concisely. As in, "You need to get a grip".

I have been lucky enough to have to learn how to live amongst people who were very different than me. I believe it has taught me some lessons, and I shared them. Moreover, I answered your (in retrospect, rhetorical) question.

So, whatever.

by Neef 2008-12-07 11:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Hmmmmmm

"But he was a teacher.  She was a student."

Yes.  And that is illegal.  And everyone knows it is illegal.  People who choose to break that law should be prepared for consequences.

What Favreau did is certainly inappropriate.  But I won't go so far as to say it is patently immoral.  He should have known better, but since the transgression is minor, the punishment should be minor.  That's all I am arguing.  

Fair or not, when we are overly sensitive about minor or barely sexist acts like this, it makes people indifferent and apathetic to serious and more obvious cases of sexism.  It doesn't mean we should ignore this.  And there should definitely be some kind of punishment.  But this is nowhere near as bad as real, serious sexism that Hillary has faced from others.  It pales in comparison to the nutcracker, Tucker Carlson's comment, and some of the other things that were said and done.  Let's realize that there are varying levels of sexism.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-12-07 09:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Hmmmmmm

Sure, if Favreau had some minor job in the administration then he would probably just get a reprimand. But he is Obama's chief speech-writer in the White House, people have been fired from the White House for offenses as minor as taking notes.

If Obama feels enough heat from this, he'll dump Favreau. And Obama would be entirely justified, because Favreau did an idiotic thing that is interfering with Obama's ability to govern.

As for letting this pass, firing Favreau would demonstrate that Obama isn't going to tolerate sexism in his administration. Not even the un-real, un-serious sexism you suggest this is, what we might call the appearance of sexism. I don't think Obama is obligated to do so, but if he did it would be a clear signal to everyone who works for him.

by souvarine 2008-12-07 10:26AM | 0 recs

Obama will quote-unquote dump Favreau, like McCain "dumped" Phil Gramm. Thats the most expedient course. Short news cycles make for short memories.

What should be surprising is if Obama defends him. That's "stepping in front of the train", and I'm skeptical it's worth his limited political capital.

by Neef 2008-12-07 10:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Hmmmmmm

I think these are all good points.  And I pretty much agree with them.  I was disappointed that Samantha Powers was brought back so quickly and at a seemingly important post.  I thought that sent a bad message as well.  So I won't be up in arms if Favreau is fired.  But I think that if he wasn't the one who posted the picture (I don't know if he did), and since he reacted quickly to get them taken down, we can only criticize him on the actual gesture he's making.  I don't happen to think that gesture is enough to cost him his job.  But too many people are criticizing him for posting the pictures and putting forth an unprofessional image when we don't even know if he is the one who posted them (I think).  IF he did post them himself, that to me is actually a much more egregious error than the gesture itself.  That shows not only unprofessionalism but also an utter lack of awareness.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-12-07 10:35AM | 0 recs
In actuality

flirting is subjective.  There was no arrest because there was no proof of any inappropriate contact.  

He was fired anyway.

Some felt if he was too stupid to not be able to curb his language to a female student, he would be too stupid to get where the he was crossing the line.

He was fired for being stupid.  This guy was stupid.  Why as a citizen would I not protest Obama hiring someone this blatantly dumb.

And it is sexist.  Clearly there is a difference here in perception because most of the female bloggers see it as sexist.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-07 10:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.


How did this thread turn so crazy?

by spacemanspiff 2008-12-07 12:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.


Some people have to check themselves.


by spacemanspiff 2008-12-07 12:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Lessons for a Facebook Generation.
Maybe this article will better explain how some of us feel and why.  It hits on the sexism we have witnessed for the last year, as well as this latest incident.  I thought it was well written and expressed a lot of what women my age perceived when it came to blog and media reaction to Hillary Clinton.
http://bucknakedpolitics.typepad.com/i_d ont_like_you_either/2008/12/hillary-clin ton.html
by Jjc2008 2008-12-07 06:55AM | 0 recs
That's a great article

It really is.

What's difficult, post-primary, is to separate "Hillary Clinton" from "women". Nancy Pelosi was FAR more powerful than HRC, MUCH earlier. Was sexism absent in her rise, or did no one care?

When I say "no one", of course I mean women too. Why wasn't Nancy the beneficiary of this powerful coalition of feminine support? To what extent is the new focus on sexism a sublimation of a thwarted cult of personality?

And yes, Obama would be an example of a cult of personality also. I wonder, had he lost, would his name have become synonymous with "Black", ignoring Jesse Jackson, Andrew Young, etc., etc.

From the outside, as a male, it it not at all clear what is going on. I clearly remember women calling Michelle Obama "disgusting" because she bought a $600 pair of earrings, and the exact same women decrying the Hillary sexism.

How much of this is about sexism, and how much is about HRC specifically?

by Neef 2008-12-07 09:18AM | 0 recs
too true neef.

but i think that its hard to separate these issues.  was pelosi a victim of sexism?  of course one just needs to look at the sexism sells, but we're not buying it video to see examples.

but HRC was a victim of sexism over and over, especially in the past year - so many are rightfully ultra sensitive to this.

what baffles me however - is that so many are projecting this onto obama - this has nothing to do with him save for how he deals with it.  this photo is sexist to be sure, misogynist?  not so much.

by canadian gal 2008-12-07 09:29AM | 0 recs
To be fair CG

The "projection onto Obama" is also fueling some (maybe a lot) of the pushback by my fellow O-supporters. Look at the Chris Matthews thread, I didn't see a single person defending that jackass.

It seems that when we try to talk about sexism and racism, we still end up talking about Hillary and Barack. They're like black holes of political discussion, nothing can escape their pull =).

That's why I appreciate you making this thread, it was much more "primary free" than the Nancy K one.

Oh, and Pelosi? Logic dictates that she had to be a victim of sexism (being a powerful woman), or else what happened to HRC wouldn't been sexism, just Clintonism. I think it would probably be unfair to assume Ms Pelosi didn't have to climb huge walls and break thick glass ceilings of her own.

Hell, what's Olympia Snowe's story, or KBH, or Sebelious, or...its like we didn't care until recently. I wonder if in some secret place, this pisses them off?

by Neef 2008-12-07 09:58AM | 0 recs
Re: To be fair CG

but who is projecting onto obama?  the way i see it - some are, some arent - most are acting trollish in both accusation and defense.

and you make a great point about the other female candidates - and several times i diaried that studies show that women running for office are treated differently.  but alas - that is another topic for another diary - in this one - we have a guy - unfortunately connected to obama - that has created a world of hurt for himself.

by canadian gal 2008-12-07 10:29AM | 0 recs
Maybe &quot;projection&quot; is a bad term

There's sort of an implicit gravitas to issues concerning the two of them. If this had been Charlie Gibson's copy editor with a cutout of Katie Couric, the discussion may have been as lively, but I suspect fewer long knives would be out.

Here's one from the, um, other thread that makes the conflict much more explicit:

I think this proves that there was sexism from
Obama's supporters beyond doubt. Looks like we need a doze of gender sensitivity inside the ``liberal'' wing of the Dem party.

c'est la vie. And totally agreed on the trollish thing, I'm not sure what's up with that. This is a real, valid issue. Perhaps it just strikes too close to home for some men. I was a frat boy, and not all my stories would amuse you.

by Neef 2008-12-07 10:44AM | 0 recs
I am guessing all the women

you mentioned faced sexism in their rise through the ranks but because much of it was probably more localized in the news, many of us have less awareness.

Hillary has been on the national scene for so long she is much more of a symbol that the other women.  Plus, early on she was trashed by the right for being a feminist, and hailed by the left for her speech on women's rights at the UN.

by Jjc2008 2008-12-07 10:43AM | 0 recs
I think that's a good take on it

The "symbol" factor.

by Neef 2008-12-07 10:47AM | 0 recs
Re: That's a great article

I don't understand the Pelosi comparison. Pelosi has dealt with sexism throughout her career, and she laughs it off the way Hillary Clinton does, as she must to be successful. For that matter just as Barack Obama carefully avoided being labelled "the Black candidate", not because he has not had to grapple with racism but because he cannot succeed in this country if race defines him.

I do not see how it is possible to separate Hillary Clinton from her gender in this photograph. Favreau is fondling her breast, something not typically done with men. His friend is kissing her and feeding her alcohol, the two of them miming a behaviour closer to date rape. The same actions done to a cut-out of a man would be meaningless, except to imply that the man was a woman, but done to an image of a woman have a particular cultural context.

by souvarine 2008-12-07 10:10AM | 0 recs
Re: That's a great article

Re: the Pelosi comparison - I'm certain she has laughed off sexism, as every successful woman does. The question is about the lack of public interest in Pelosi's treatment. Where were all the sexism stories when Pelosi was fighting her way to the top?

Also, I didn't mean "hard to separate Hillary from her gender". I meant "hard to separate Hillary from women who are less defended".

Would a cardboard cutout of Britney Spears have gotten Favreau in such trouble? Technically, if we're purely talking sexism, it should.

by Neef 2008-12-07 10:21AM | 0 recs
Re: That's a great article

The same picture with Spears' face instead of Clinton's? No, it would not have gotten the public attention this picture did, but I suspect that if Obama's personnel people are on the ball Favreau would be quietly shunted aside because of it. Guys with the attitude shown in this picture are a political problem waiting to happen. You really don't want people who need sensitivity training in high political staff positions.

Only a handful of incidents of sexism against Hillary were publicised in the primary, most were ignored. Clinton knew publicising them would do her no good. The outcry didn't come until Clinton withdrew, largely because the media, and importantly the Party, did little to fight what to a lot of Democrats looked like rampant sexism throughout the process.

by souvarine 2008-12-07 10:37AM | 0 recs
But it should

get the same attention, don't you agree? If this is about sexism, it should. Decrying sexism against certain people isn't decrying sexism, it's something else.

I think that's one of the elements that makes this feel so controversial, the sense that the particular actors have more to do with the story than the purported wrong.

by Neef 2008-12-07 10:51AM | 0 recs
Re: But it should

Yes, it should. But there are many things I think should get more public attention than they do, sexism, racism and poverty among them. Sexism against women like Britney Spears does get attention in some of my news sources, but despite her celebrity she is not an effective symbol of feminism.

Requiring the right actors, at the right time, in the right context, to highlight an issue is not new. A Rosa Parks taking a stand at a particular time, in a particular place, does not invalidate all of the people who took a stand before her.

by souvarine 2008-12-07 11:24AM | 0 recs
An excellent point

about Rosa Parks.

I tell you what though, I don't think we'll make any real advances until we understand the sexism against Britney Spears (and Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan etc). THAT's where the intersection of sexism and sexuality, exploitation and marketing is.

That sort of sexism is, in my opinion, the engine that fuels the rest. That's the glamorous, profitable, acceptable sexism that blunts the sting from the simply incongruous and insulting sort.

by Neef 2008-12-07 12:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Favreau should be fired.

this has obviously touched a HUGE nerve with us...

so why is the mainstream media not picking up the story?

by latina 2008-12-07 09:30AM | 0 recs
Re:Campbell Brown reported it

on Friday and strangely, she chastised Hillary, for not taking a stronger stand against it.  So I guess this bozo's obnoxious, disrespectful behavior is somehow Hillary's fault.  

by half nelson 2008-12-07 12:56PM | 0 recs
Re:Campbell Brown reported it

yeah just read about this.  campbell brown is a tool.

by canadian gal 2008-12-07 02:54PM | 0 recs
Hold on

Half the commenters here are beating on the other half for not taking a stronger stand on it.

How the heck is Campbell Brown wrong? She is taking the exact same tack as the more judgmental members in this very thread. The "if you're not furious over it, you are condoning it" school of thought.

Why hold Brown's opinions to different standards?

by Neef 2008-12-08 05:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Hold on

i think campbell is blaming clinton for this rather than favreau.  althought i may be wrong.  if this is true - surely you understand why clinton cannot make an issue out of it no?

by canadian gal 2008-12-08 03:37PM | 0 recs
If she were blaming Clinton for the incident

I'd pillory Campbell right with you, that would be ludicrous. However, Brown states that "It seems that the apology was not even necessary, a Clinton spokesman describes this as good natured fun".

I believe that is a quote from the video.

As far as I can see, the only difference between Campbell's position and the dominant one in this thread is that Clinton's spokesman should be allowed to call it good natured fun, but no one else should.

Of course I see Clinton's dilemma, and I think a more..sensitive political journalist might have cut the Clinton camp some slack. What I don't see is a reason to criticize Brown.

Consistency is important. Half the problem with sexism is that it is confusing and ambiguous. Mixed messages and coded permissions aren't going to cut it, and while I wouldn't have derided the Clinton response (since it somewhat mirrors my worldview), I think Campbell Brown is allowed to share the same views as many in this thread.

Am I that off base?

by Neef 2008-12-08 04:08PM | 0 recs

the double-bind.

but brown is a tool - she deliberately ahemmisspeaks to further her own agenda as she did on this.  like i said all through the primary - i like my press unbiased and honest - brown appears to be neither.  and i guess what kinda pisses me off is that she is suddenly concerned about sexism...  where was old campbell throughout the past year?

by canadian gal 2008-12-08 07:50PM | 0 recs
Yea, the double bind is rough

No question. It's why I wouldn't hold Clinton to the fire on this. But even the blog you link to says "I'm not thrilled by her decision to laugh this off, because it does embolden the same sorts of behavior by others". That's a mild criticism, but a criticism nonetheless.

Of course in the next paragraph, they go on to demand Obama make a big deal out it, which still makes it a big deal. You have to wonder if any of these people have ever actually been embarrassed by bigotry. I have, and sometimes you are just embarrassed, and just want it to go away. Of course, this doesn't necessarily dovetail with the agenda of those who want to use you as a symbol.

I'm sure, 100% positive, Sen Clinton wishes this had never happened and wants it to go away. I strongly sympathize, and in this I agree with your being irked with Campbell. I think Brown (and many others) are simply prolonging the agony in order to make a point.

However, I can't be pissed at Campbell for saying the exact same thing everyone else is saying. There is no difference in tone, or rationale, between Campbell's video, and this very thread. You could dismiss it based on motive, but she is a woman, and what case could you make that she feels so differently than you?

Anyway, the whole thing is a circus, and out of the whole mess, I feel for Clinton. I am fairly irked with cheerleaders on both sides of the debate. In a perfect world this would be simply between Clinton and Favreau, not Clinton-as-archetype and Favreau-as-archetye.

by Neef 2008-12-09 03:57AM | 0 recs
Re: .


I have been as critical as anyone here about some of the over the top, wrong, and must nasty comments and actions made by some of the BO supporters. But i will say that this doesnt really upset me.  There was really nothing sexist or nasty about that picture imho.  It is just a young man blowing off some steam after a very long primary and election.  I think HRC has been very cool about her comments about this picture and frankly i think i will follow her lead in this regard.

HRC, Bill, and BO are not just pols but they are iconic and having a picture with their cardboards comes with that.  I dont think he should have placed his hand where he did but i think "come on" do we as dems what to be the thought and action police.  I dont think there was any malice intended and "really" i think this is no big deal.


by giusd 2008-12-07 10:02AM | 0 recs


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