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Saturday, May 20, 2006

i hate republicans

I fucking hate Republicans - period.

I’ve always kind of been on the fence with John McCain – he is certainly one of the less offensive Republicans, and sometimes he can be useful. He has this moral authority and credibility that is not too common in Congress – due largely, I think, to his veteran status. The way things are shaping up, it looks as if he could likely be the G.O.P. nomination for 2008 – God help us – from fucking Republicans.

Anyway, McCain has been making the headlines most recently for his grand tour of college graduations. He has been the keynote speaker at a number of schools – including The New School, Columbia, Ohio State and Liberty University - Jerry Falwell’s school, a bastion of Christian conservatism… and intellectual snobbery.

Among other things, his commencement address echoed his support for the war in Iraq as well as the importance of civil discourse – saying that “the Iraq conflict was just, but those who disagreed should say so loudly and forcefully.” Needless to say his bullshit went over like a lead balloon at both Columbia and The New School. There had been a considerable protest planned at Columbia (shocker), but sadly the rain put a bit of a damper on the whole thing.

Luckily The New School held their ceremony indoors, and a large number of students and faculty blew it out – wearing orange buttons, and holding posters that read “McCain Does Not Speak For Me.” One of the student speakers (who preceded McCain in the lineup) said the following – for which she received a roaring ovation.

“The senator does not reflect the ideals upon which this university was founded. This invitation was a top-down decision that did not take into account the desires and interests of the student body on an occasion that is supposed to honor us above all. Senator McCain will tell us today that dissent and disagreement are our civic and moral obligation in times of crisis, and I agree. I consider this a time of crisis, and I feel obligated to speak. Senator McCain will also tell us about his strong-headed self-assuredness in his youth, which prevented him from hearing the ideas of others, and in so doing he will imply that those of us who are young are too naïve to have valid opinions. I am young, and although I don't profess to possess the wisdom that time affords us, I do know that pre-emptive war is dangerous and wrong. Osama bin Laden still has not been found, nor have those weapons of mass destruction."

As a bit of an aside, I think it’s interesting – totally predictable but still interesting, how McCain is positioning himself for 2008. In 2000, on Meet the Press, he referred to the Reverend Jerry Falwell as an “agent of intolerance.” Now that the Christian Right officially owns the Republican party, he is eating shit and backpedaling so quickly that even my head is spinning – watch this clip.

To be fair, this kind of thing is not specific to the Republican Party – when it comes to presidential elections, it seems to be how the game is played. Hillary and her big bag of bullshit has been pulling the same thing recently. What is interesting is that this kind of strategy always seems to involve initially swinging all the way to the right. Notice how no one (with any real visibility) is willing to swing to the far left. Someone needs to remind them that “Flip-Flopping” doesn’t win elections.


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