more cheap shots

Apparently my previous post struck a nerve with my buddy Chris.  I don’t recall saying anything about cheap shots being the sole domain of the Democrats.  I also think there’s a difference between saying something really stupid, like the GOP Congressional candidate he mentions in his post, and calling a candidate a “warmonger” and a “blatant opportunist”. I do give Obama credit for apologizing for Ed Schultz, but he had to do that, even if he agrees with Schultz. It’s hard to decide how outraged to be about what this McCain supporter said about Obama when it’s unclear what the guy meant by that statement (as Chris admits in his post).

I disagree with Chris and with Ed Schultz about McCain being a warmonger.  Maybe it’s the definition we disagree about here.  McCain intends to keep troops in Iraq as long as they are necessary to keep Iraq from falling apart.  You can support that position or not, but this doesn’t automatically make him a warmonger. McCain won’t be trigger-happy on potential future wars.  No one who has served in the military would be.  I thought the Democrats had this view — that those who have never served should have less credibility than those who have when it comes to discussions of war.  There’s another reason that McCain has a stake in Iraq, and it’s that his son is serving there.  Do the Dems really want to argue that McCain wouldn’t take every future decision on what to do next in Iraq seriously with his son’s life on the line?

I’m not trying to defend Iraq.  I don’t think it’s possible to make any progress on that argument at this point, since both sides have dug in their heels and nothing will keep them from believing what they believe about Iraq. But McCain has less faith in the Bush democracy project than he will admit.

5 thoughts on “more cheap shots

  1. You didn’t hit a nerve at all. I actually liked the post. But you did say Dems were cheap shot artists, which maybe they are, but certainly not alone in that regard. And neither did I say you said cheap shots were the sole domain of Dems. However, you wrote the post, I just wrote one also to point out what appears to be a racist remark openly embraced by John McCain. If it’s not racist, and it might not be since really no one that I can tell knows exactly what Bellavia is referring to, it’s certainly a cheap shot.

    Why did Obama have to reject Schultz’s comment? Shouldn’t McCain have to do the same with Bellavia?

    McCain’s position on Iraq is that as long as our troops are being killed we can’t leave. But as long as they aren’t dying then we can stay forever. Either way it’s forever in Iraq. Forever in Iraq is a warmonger to me.

  2. Wow. Imagine what would happen if you didn’t like the post.

    I don’t have much to add to this. I know that you didn’t accuse me of saying that only Democrats take cheap shots at the opposition. But you did say that it’s not only Democrats who do this. I guess it’s hair-splitting on my part to some degree. It’s just something you always do when Kent, Jaz, or I point out something we don’t think Democrats should engage in, like the “warmonger” and “blatant opportunist” comments — pointing out that Republicans do similar things as well. Neither of us should have to feel obligated to denounce or approve of every single comment by our candidates’ supporters.

    As far as Ed Schultz is concerned, and Bellavia, yeah, I think that the campaigns are obligated to issue apologies. Not because Barack or McCain should be held accountable for everything said by their supporters, but because it’s the politically correct thing to do, and neither Barack nor John McCain wants to be seen as the uncivil one. They want to at least pretend to elevate the dialogue by acting shocked about some of the outrageous things said by their supporters. It’s a game. I think it has reached a ridiculous level where those in the public eye supporting one of the candidates will now be afraid to say anything unscripted.

  3. I don’t think I did anything out of the ordinary. Like I said on my site, I probably never would have thought much about what Bellavia said and how McCain embraced him if I had not read your post. That’s not a bad thing. I’m just saying your post got me to thinking. I think pointing out blatant contrasting principles (i.e., pointing out a post that calls Dems cheap shot artists without mentioning how Repubs also do it all the time and conveniently for me did it the same day I read your post) is what blogging about politics is all about.

    There is no obligation whatsoever to denounce or approve of every single comment by our candidate’s supporters. It would be impossible to do such. It’s when you do single one out publicly on a blog that it becomes open to contrast. A contrast that is easily noticeable. You may feel calling McCain a warmonger is worse than making some sort of racist/disingenious comment. I on the other hand feel differently which is why I wrote my post. And which is why we both have blogs open to comments. 🙂

  4. I understand what you’re saying here. But I don’t have to point out stuff like the Bellavia comment in my post about Democrats, just like you don’t have to mention the comments by Howard Dean and Ed Schultz in your post about McCain. What drives me nuts is the implied idea that I’m intentionally ignoring bad Republicans. I’m not. I just figured that you would cover that angle on PN. 🙂 I did say that both campaigns should apologize for their supporters because it’s the PC thing to do, but I’m not sure it’s possible for Obama or McCain to control random comments like this.

  5. I understand. But I never said that you had to mention Bellavia. I said I mentioned it because you didn’t. So the effectiveness and design of blogging worked for both of us. That’s what blogging is. Which is also why I said the original post didn’t strike a nerve with me like you mentioned it must have. It made me think and write a post in reply. That’s what we do.

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