November 10, 2008, - 12:09 pm

The Real Highlights of the Article Are Telling, Hilarious

By Debbie Schlussel
Over the weekend, I read the Newsweek magazine extended set of articles that have been getting a lot of attention over the allegations about the intellect and behavior of Sarah Palin. But the Palin stuff–whether true or not–is not among the many highlights and notable item in the articles, seven chapters of what’s called “Secrets of the 2008 Campaign”.
I’ve posted them for you below, since I find them hilarious, sad and telling, especially this one. Gee, I wonder why he lost:

McCain had set firm boundaries: no Jeremiah Wright; no attacking Michelle Obama; no attacking Obama for not serving in the military. McCain balked at an ad using images of children that suggested that Obama might not protect them from terrorism; Schmidt vetoed ads suggesting that Obama was soft on crime (no Willie Hortons); and before word even got to McCain, Schmidt and Salter scuttled a “celebrity” ad of Obama dancing with talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres (the sight of a black man dancing with a lesbian was deemed too provocative).


Too Provocative for McCain Campaign to Mock?

With all of this off the table, what’s left? A losing campaign.
Then, there’s this–the Obama team saying that Sarah Palin would cause violence toward the Obama campaign, and Ms. Thang–Michelle Hussein Obama–wondering why people hate he and hubby. Hmmm . . . might have something to do with the fact that she’s the most overbearing wife in public life since Hillary–only she’s way worse. Or her expressed non-proudness of this “mean” country. Let’s see, they put out a ton of negative ads on McCain, but the Mccain Team isn’t supposed to be negative on them?:

“I’m worried,” Gregory Craig said to a NEWSWEEK reporter in mid-October. He was concerned that the frenzied atmosphere at the Palin rallies would encourage someone to do something violent toward Obama. He was not the only one in the Obama campaign thinking the unthinkable. The campaign was provided with reports from the Secret Service showing a sharp and very disturbing increase in threats to Obama in September and early October. Michelle was shaken by the vituperative crowds and the hot rhetoric from the GOP candidates. “Why would they try to make people hate us?” she asked Valerie Jarrett. Several of Obama’s friends in the Senate were shocked by the GOP rabble-rousing.

Shocked? Look in the mirror, dudes. Um, Michelle, no-one needed to try to make people hate you. You did it all on your own.
And finally, there are these items about the Obama Team’s use of Jay-Z, how the media ignored it, and how the Obama campaign considered using bribe money–a/k/a “walking around money”–and the shockingly real statements by a state senator who wanted that money and saw Obama for what he really was:

The campaign wanted to reach out to young black men, but in a way that would not antagonize white voters. The rap artist Jay-Z offered to perform in concert for Obama in October, but the campaign was “nervous,” recalled Jim Messina, the campaign chief of staff. Black leaders from the community in Detroit and Miami pleaded with Obama headquarters, Messina recalled, saying, in effect, “You keep saying to us, ‘Go produce sporadic African-American young voters.’ Give us the tools. Jay-Z is a tool and you have to give him to us.”
Warily, the campaign agreed but still called the rap star’s management to ask him not to say anything about McCain or Palin onstage, for fear that the rapper would make crude or incendiary remarks that would wind up on Fox News. Jay-Z agreed not to riff on the Republican candidates, but he said he wanted to perform a song, “Blue Magic,” that includes the line “Push, money over broads, f— Bush/Chef, guess what I cooked? Made a lot of bread and kept it off the books.”
At a concert on Oct. 5 in Miami, Jay-Z decided to skip the line about Bush, but the crowd, familiar with the words, roared it out anyway, as giant portraits of Bush and Obama lit up the backdrop. The incident passed largely unnoticed by the media–and the Obama campaign registered 10,000 new voters in Miami.
“Walking-around money” is an old and somewhat disreputable political practice of dispensing cash to local pols, grass-roots community leaders and preachers to get out the vote on Election Day, particularly in poorer areas inhabited by racial and ethnic minorities. As money changes hands, a certain amount of winking is typically involved; not all of the funds go to, say, hiring drivers or passing out leaflets, and the recipients are not shy about asking. (During the Robert F. Kennedy campaign for president in 1968, Kennedy operatives made sure not to bid up the going rate for walking-around money, or to hand it out too early, lest they have to pay twice.)
On Oct. 21, Michael Strautmanis was riding, along with a NEWSWEEK reporter, through the streets of Philadelphia. . . . Strautmanis had been a close friend of Michelle and Barack Obama since he worked at the same Chicago law firm. . . .
Next was a meeting with a state senator, who greeted Strautmanis like an old friend, even though they had never met. The state senator said he was in awe of Obama. “He’s the greatest bulls—ter in the world!” the politician exclaimed. “I know he’s bulls—ting me, but it feels good!” Sensing he was perhaps being a little too frank, the state senator said, “I want to be as helpful as I can.” . . . The state senator suggested . . . “street money. I know you guys didn’t do it in the primary, but . . . .”
. . . . After the meeting, Strautmanis admitted to seeing some benefit [to paying “street money”]. “I think we should do it,” the Obama aide told a NEWSWEEK reporter. “It’s just part of the culture here, and what will it cost? A couple of hundred grand? . . . For a lot of people, if they don’t get it, they just flat-out won’t engage.” (The Obama campaign ultimately refused to provide any walking-around money, though as Politico reported, some was provided by local sources.)

Skip Newsweek. This is all you need to know from over 100 pages of blather about the campaign.

6 Responses

White people afraid of being called racists. They’d rather lose an election than being called a racist, and they did.
You can’t run a gracious, genteel campaign, while the other side puts Palin’s head in a noose.
Either you’re willing to roll around in the mud, or you’re not. It seemed like Palin was the only one willing to get down-n-dirty. Sadly, she was working for a campaign that didn’t back her up on that.

Maxine Weiss on November 10, 2008 at 2:25 pm

Did you ever see this exchange between Rick Sanchez and Michael Goldfarb? This is exactly what you are talking about Goldfarb obviously was told not to say J.Wright, Farrakhan, Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and on on….McCain obviously told his surrogates not to mention any of COBRAMA anti-semitic associates. I bet Debbie wouldn’t have folded up like a chair on this line of quesioning. Sanchez would been walking back to the water cooler with head in his hands.
McCain tried doing the gentlemanly thing and lost. He underestimated his enemies; he figured they were nice cuddly liberals. Liberals are about fascit hate. Conservatives cannot put anyone out there to explain there beliefs or defend thier reputation. Make no mistake the media won this election. Lets see the Media has defeated the Iraq War, The War on Terrorism, Bush, Hillary, Bill Clinton, McCain, and Palin. Everyone had been made out to look like the Devil.
Time and time again as long as conservatives allow MSNBC, CNN, NYTIMES, LATIMES, MOVEON.ORG., HUFFINGTONPOST, NEWSWEEK define them they will continually be marginalized. We need a Jesse Ventura type who is willing to take on the media with the same of fierceness. It may take a new Party to take back our country from the Liberals. The Republican brand has baggage and wont fight for itself. It neutered itself in this election.

californiascreaming on November 10, 2008 at 3:45 pm

Ms. Weiss,
How can White people fear being called “racists” during an election when no one knows how an individual votes once they get in the voting booth? How can you be labled a “racist” if no one knows how you voted? Is there such a thing as a “White commuity” that has its own leaders and collective mindset? And did the “White community” collectively get together and decide to vote for Obama so they wouldn’t be called racist? I doubt it and I hope not…there are far more important things going on right now than to be concerned with such nonsense.
Obama won because:
* Economic recessions always hit the party in power very hard during elections
* The absymal view Americans had of the Bush Presidency
* The Financial Meltdown
* The McCain campaign never seemed to present a coherent message
* Obama is a good orator. People may dismiss this as “So what if he can give a good speech…he’s an empty suit”. Well, as I tell the kids I mentor, NEVER underestimate the power of being an excellent public speaker and having a good command of the English language. Leave the “ebonics” at home or for hanging out with your friends.
* Obama courted and had the mainstream media on his side.
* In a time when Americans are getting a little anxious, Obama presented a very confident and poised image. As any executive coach will tell you, the image you present as a top executive can affect everything from employee moral to stock price at your company.
* Obama ran an excellent campaign. To use the infamous term Andrew Young popularized, Obama hired a bunch of SAWBs (Smart-Ass White Boys) to run his campaign and they knew what the hell they were doing.
As far as Gov. Palin, she’s a formidable woman who will definitely be back on the scene. Yes, she was willing to get down and dirty (and was probably handcuffed by the McCain folks), but her attacks on Obama at her rallies were mainly preaching to the choir. She energized the conservative base, but her attacks didn’t bring any new voters to McCain…she was basically just throwing red meat to folks who weren’t going to vote for Obama anyway.
As far as putting Gov. Palin’s head in a noose, she may have contributed to that with those disasterous interviews she had with the media. It was like a rookie getting rocked for the first time in a pro game…welcome to the NFL! Gov. Palin got a rude awakening to the viciousness of national politics and the “gotcha” tactics of the national media. But I think she started coming into her own as the campaign went on. But now, it seems like some low-level loons with the McCain campaign are the ones trying to put her head in a noose….

JibberJabber on November 10, 2008 at 6:07 pm

Debbie, I knew after the first debate when McCain stuck to policy issues it was all over. Now any criticism of BO is widely considered to be thinly veiled racism. Also, NPR’s report on Obama today all but said that he walks on water.

Anonymous1 on November 10, 2008 at 7:07 pm

I don’t know anybody that wanted McCain to get the Republican nomination, or who thought that he was the best person in the country for the job of president. Almost everyone I heard about,myself included, voted for McCain because they didn’t want to see Obama get elected. McCain is too much of a “nice guy” to be president and the leader of a political party. The Republicans are going to have to put out an APB to find decent candidates that aren’t ass kissers and yes men.

Ron Taylor on November 11, 2008 at 2:53 am

It just never stops. I just read on the Drudge report, an article from the Jerusalem post, in which the prime minister of Israel, Olmert, says that Israel is going to have to give up parts of Jerusalem. The whole western world must be losing it’s mind. If Israel gives up more territory, the islamics will still be killing Israelis, and all that will have been accomplished will be that Israel will have given up more territory.

Ron Taylor on November 11, 2008 at 3:10 am

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