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BOW Award

How do I give out a BOW (Buffoon Of the Week) Award this time around?  There have been so many acts of idiocy out there this week that I don't even know where to begin.  And I'm so fed up, so angry, so offended, that I can't find any way to make this post fun -- which is something I shoot for when I write these things every week. 

Do I give the award to Sarah Palin retroactively for the Troopergate thing?  Do I give it to her for being so stupid that she not only violated the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act, but did so in spite of being warned again and again that she was trampling on the law?  Do I give it to her for continuing to maintain that she did nothing wrong and that this was just a partisan attack?  (To my friends on the right, read the conclusions of the report that came out of Alaska on Friday.  The report is quite clear:  she abused her power and violated the law.  She can't be sanctioned by the Alaska State Legislature; that falls to the state's Personnel Board, which is conducting its own investigation.  But it's clear that what she did was wrong.  And this was NOT a partisan attack.  The report was approved unanimously by a bipartisan board consisting of ten Republicans and four Democrats -- and yes, those numbers are right.)  Or do I give it to John McCain for choosing this woman who he clearly did not vet properly? 

Or do I go in a different direction?  Do I give it to the idiots who have been shouting out at McCain-Palin rallies this week, calling Barack Obama a "terrorist", or shouting out "kill him," or calling him a "traitor"?  Do I give it to the woman at the McCain town hall meeting who said that Obama was "an Arab"?  (And let me say here that John McCain's response to this woman was as admirable as it was long overdue.  He corrected her, saying, "No, ma'am, no ma'am.  He's not."  He went on to say that Obama was a decent man who deserved respect.  Later he told another questioner that there was no reason to be "scared" of an Obama Presidency.  As a friend of mine noted in a comment on my blog, it was as if the old John McCain, who campaigned with such dignity in 2000, made a brief cameo on the 2008 campaign stage.)  Do I give it to the man at the Palin rally yesterday who had a monkey doll with an Obama sticker on it -- and who got rid of the sticker and gave away the monkey as soon as he saw that there was a video camera on him?

Do we give it to the pastor at McCain's rally in Iowa yesterday who, in his invocation, said, "There are plenty of people around the world who are praying to their god, be they Hindu, Buddah, or Allah, that (McCain's) opponent wins. I pray that you step forward and honor your own name"?  (It seems that Christians are all praying for a McCain victory.  News to me.)

Do we give it to every right-wing nut who has said that the Obama Campaign has injected race into this election?  Yes, there are many people saying just that.  Apparently they've managed to ignore the Curious George Obama doll.  They've managed to forget the words of Republican Congressman Lynn Westmoreland, who called Obama "Uppity."  They've managed to turn a blind eye every time someone has accused Obama of being a Muslim, and everytime someone has referred pointedly to Obama's middle name.  They've managed for all this time to ignore the code words thrown around again and again by Republican operatives -- the snarky attacks against "community organizers", the thousand ways they found to call Obama uppity before Westmoreland actually used the word, the myriad attacks designed to emphasize the fact that Obama is different and therefore to be feared.

Or do we give it once again to the McCain-Palin campaign for doing everything they can in these last couple of weeks to stir up these fears and hostilities?  Yes, John McCain corrected a few people at a couple of recent campaign events.  But he and Sarah Palin have been like kids poking a hornets' nest with a stick and then reacting with shock and outrage when they get stung.  Attacks and smears are all they have left, and they've been resorting to them with gusto.  Palin says that Obama is "palling around with terrorists" and then the campaign acts surprised when someone calls him a terrorist.  She calls him un-American and then McCain appears surprised when a woman calls Obama a "traitor."  McCain's campaign manager says at the beginning of the week that the campaign wants to turn away from the economy and focus on "character issues."  And then the campaign acts surprised when critics in the media accuse them of running an empty campaign.  Well, for once the media got it right.

So this week I'm giving the BOW Award to every person out there who refuses to wage this campaign on the issues, who resorts to personal attacks and innuendo, guilt-by-association attacks and subliminal racism, fear-mongering and outright lies.  Take a BOW there, all of you.  You've certainly earned it.
 

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
hedwig_snowy
Oct. 12th, 2008 05:00 pm (UTC)
I hope you brought enough BOW trophies for everyone. :) (You'll need alot) Start with almost everyone on Fox and work you way...up.

No matter the side anyone takes on the issues or their political stance, I would hope they would see that the McCain campaign showed who they really are this week. It's not about Country First, it's about winning and the only way the "New GOP" can do so is to go down this road. That some think it's 'appropriate' or even 'inspiring' shows just how far they've sunk. They are in a place where they need not only to beat an 'opponent' but must demonize, and dehumanize, the 'enemy'. And, the enemy in all cases is someone who disagrees with their view. How American. How Christian. How Pathetic.
davidbcoe
Oct. 12th, 2008 05:06 pm (UTC)
We are, I hope, seeing the death throes of Rovian politics. If Obama can manage to win this thing -- and especially if he does so by the kind of margin polls and pundits on the left and right are starting to suggest is possible -- his victory might finally kill off this type of campaigning. Probably a naive hope, but I'll cling to it nonetheless.
fionagh
Oct. 12th, 2008 09:02 pm (UTC)
I made a post a few weeks ago that said once you've made up your mind to vote one way or the other it's best to turn the television off and stop visiting the kind of sites that drive your hackles up. As I say in my entry, you'll know if something earth-shattering comes up. It's the over-information age -- you can't not know.

Naturally, I'm glad I took my own advice. Campaigning isn't campaigning anymore. I have yet to hear one new piece of campaign platform addressed in the past 4 weeks. Once you learn a candidate's platform in a simple interview or listen to the debate answers they give when challenged, you pretty much don't need to subject yourself to the embarrassing media spectacle anymore.

And seeing how upset you are over it, I say again -- you really shouldn't subject yourself to it. The power these people hold over others (if even just their emotions such as anger) is the most disheartening symptom of media coverage in the last 3-4 weeks of any election.

I refuse to let anyone have that much control over my emotions. I made my decision. I'm voting on voting day. If the votes aren't counted properly again (as they haven't been for the past 2 terms) then I will take further appropriate action as a citizen of the United States. Otherwise, I just can't subject myself to the reindeer games of the news media when there's real American work to be done. Charity work, poll work, and informational seminars are where it's at.

Once again, I have to say how impressed I am with your blog and I do find it so helpful to come here and see what's up in the world.
davidbcoe
Oct. 12th, 2008 09:55 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Fi. I wish I had the strength to do what you suggest. I'm pretty obsessed with all of this these days and can't bring myself to turn it off, even knowing that I should. I'm looking forward to it being over.

Glad you enjoy the blog.
fionagh
Oct. 12th, 2008 09:59 pm (UTC)
I really do. It inspired me to make a post today. I almost never post. ^_^
markwise
Oct. 13th, 2008 05:07 am (UTC)
Does this include the Obama campaign who made fun of McCain's age? Or the fact that he cannot raise his arms above his head? Or threats of gang bang rape attacks? Or comments from the Obama supporters that Palin has 5 kids and so she better stay at home and take of them (ignoring Pelosi's 5 children)?

Both camps have their extremes. So far, I haven't seen a focus on issues from either one.
davidbcoe
Oct. 13th, 2008 03:31 pm (UTC)
Yes, Mark, it includes them as well. Ridiculing John McCain for his physical infirmities is disgusting and inexcusable. Making fun of his age is as well, though I think that raising his age as an issue in a respectful way, particularly in light of who he chose as his running mate, is legitimate. Speaking of Palin's kids as something that disqualifies her from office is not legitimate; the comments about gang rape were so disgusting that they nearly made my head explode. You're right; there has been plenty of dark rhetoric from both sides. The difference is that Obama and Biden themselves have been respectful, even as they have been critical. McCain and especially Palin have not. Indeed, they have been contemptuous at times. And more to the point, they have been dangerously irresponsible. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/12/opinion/12rich.html?em

Edited at 2008-10-13 03:32 pm (UTC)
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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