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Nicholas_J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:05 PM
Original message
Dean mired in explaining goofs
By Thomas Oliphant, 9/14/2003

BALTIMORE

EVERY SERIOUS presidential candidate needs to live in fear of three simple words: "Smith later explained." They are now part of Howard Dean's life, and they have achieved some traction in the political world, even as his campaign continues to rake in dollars, grass roots workers, and Iowa and New Hampshire polling points.

ADVERTISEMENT

Dean later explained his position on Israel.

Dean later explained his position on Social Security.

Dean later explained his position on the Cuban embargo and the tax cuts for moderate-income Americans he wants to junk. And in a head-scratching combination of inaccuracy and egomania, Dean later explained his weird assertion that he was the only white candidate willing to talk about race before white audiences.

When those words or their synonyms pop up in the press, the candidate is not only screwing up, he has been busted. He is explaining because he is having to wiggle out of a fix he put himself in.


http://www.boston.com/news/globe/editorial_opinion/oped...
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clar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:10 PM
Response to Original message
1. C'mon
Surely you can find 5 or 6 more articles to support your case that Dean's campaign has been derailed,

I can't wait until the q3 figures come in. It'll be interesting to watch you spin that.
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bowens43 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:20 PM
Response to Reply #1
9. Maybe instead of constantly posting negative articles about
Dean you should try to post a few positive articles about the candidate you prefer. IMO those who post nothing but negatives are doing a disservice to our party and to their candidate candidate.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:50 PM
Response to Reply #9
14. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
ET Awful Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:13 PM
Response to Original message
2. Kerry later explained
why he voted to support Bush's war.
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molly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:15 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. Kerry has always said the same thing - no waffling there
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tedoll78 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:17 PM
Response to Reply #2
6. Less than ten minutes later!
Good job!

(I was wondering how long the obvious response would take to appear on this thread, lol.)
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DrFunkenstein Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 01:02 PM
Response to Reply #6
21. Thank You For Proving The Point
Every positive Kerry thread I ever posted was flamed by Dean supporters regarding the IWR. And now they are mewling like kittens.
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UnapologeticLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:52 PM
Response to Reply #2
38. Ouch!
Good one!

Seriously, why do we keep having to have all these stupid threads posted that are certain to do nothing but start a flame war between the Dean people and the Kerry people. Don't we realize that we are all from the same wing of the same party and that if Dean does not get the nomination most of us will throw our support to Kerry, and I would guess the opposite is true for a lot of Kerry supporters.

A few months ago, when I was pissed off at some attack on Dean by Kerry's campaign manager, I started digging in the Congressional Record to find something Kerry had said on the topic that could be used against him. But I stopped after a few minutes...I just couldn't do it. I could not sit there and dig up dirt on somebody whom I may one day be supporting, not only in the general election but in the primaries, because if Kerry wins NH by a lot and Dean has to quit, I would rather Kerry get the nomination than Lieberman or Gephardt. So even though I know the rivalry between Dean and Kerry is necessarily stronger than between any other candidates, since they are competing for the same wing of Democratic voters in the same key states, I try hard not to become anti-Kerry, because I know that one day I may have to throw my support to him. I try hard not to bash any of the other candidates, and I wish everyone would do that, and that some people here would not spend time assisting Karl Rove by digging up crap on our candidates and helping to craft arguments against them.
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-20-03 06:56 AM
Response to Reply #2
48. Before he voted on it?
How is that 'later' explaining his vote?
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molly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:15 PM
Response to Original message
3. Whoa - looks like he's taking a beating
Watching them do it is one of the joys of politics, and watching Dean do it is instructive as well because the difficulty this mass-marketed straight talker has sometimes in actually talking straight is considerable. Of late, he has managed to mix inadequate explanations with a revealing annoyance that he is being subjected to slings and arrows that go with the territory for everybody else.

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Cocoa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:54 PM
Response to Reply #3
15. "revealing annoyance"
I think he's exactly right there, and it's not just him, it's his supporters too. Entirely fair criticisms cause a huge overreation unlike other candidates.

I think what it "reveals" is a deep insecurity.

But at least Dean isn't taking the attitude that "issues don't matter" as a Dean supporter tried saying here recently. If he starts saying that, it's all over for him.
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LuminousX Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:15 PM
Response to Original message
4. Wow, Dean is doomed
Geez, he'd better give up right now.


I don't think any of this will affect the support Dean has or affect new people from joining his campaign.
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:19 PM
Response to Original message
7. Thomas Oliphant has a point - and Dean needs a bit of work -but as
Tom notes this has not reached "critical mass" yet - and is a common event on the pathway of a sucessful run for President - Tom is only warning that Dean should work on making sure it does not reach critical mass - and noting that Dean's response to other Dem's noting a Dean flub is inappropiate and needs to be worked on.

I thought it a useful review.
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kstewart33 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:19 PM
Response to Original message
8. Oliphant is right on
I watched Dean on the Stephanopoulus show today. I wanted to watch Dean closely because I haven't been following him much. Dean comes off as superior, as Oliphant says. Dean seems to say things off the cuff, and rather carelessly. He wears his ego on his sleeve. If you dare to question his position, he gets visibly annoyed as he did with George Steph, and as Oliphant says.

In short, the guy's not likeable. He's too careless in what he says because he appears to think he doesn't have to be careful. Egooooo. If he doesn't stop and make some major adjustments in how he interacts with people and what he says, he's in big trouble. Bush will tear him up by focusing on all of his inconsistencies.

Dean doesn't look ready for the big time. Too bad for him and the Dem party.
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mbali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:36 PM
Response to Reply #8
34. Steph nailed him
on NAFTA and race and Dean did not handle it well.

My favorite part was Stephanapoulus telling him that he has traveled with the other candidates and he has heard them talk about race in just the way that Dean says it should be talked about. Dean's response? "Well, not before I did."

I'm glad to know that Dean is the first white politician to ever talk meaningfully about race to white audiences. Bobby Kennedy, Bill Clinton, Bill Bradley, John Edwards, and all those other white politicians I thought had been talking about it before anyone had even heard of Howard Dean sure had ME fooled!

Boy, do I feel silly!
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ant Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:23 PM
Response to Original message
10. that's rather simplistic
From the article:
When those words or their synonyms pop up in the press, the candidate is not only screwing up, he has been busted. He is explaining because he is having to wiggle out of a fix he put himself in.

Or he is explaining because someone has misrepresented his position or downright lied about it.

I'm not saying this is necessarily the case with Dean - I haven't been following this stuff that closely to know* - but the author misses the complexity of how politicians speak and spin.

*I did catch a bit on This Week where Steph was talking to Dean about a claim Geph made re Dean saying he supported Gingrich's cuts in medicare. (That's the basic idea, I may not be getting it totally right.) In any case, "Dean later explained" - or pointed out, really - that what he had actually said was that he supported cutting medicare's GROWTH RATE. My apologies if I'm getting the details wrong, I was doing dishes while listening to the TV in the other room, but my point is that explaining to someone that they've misunderstood/misrepresented your position is not the same as wiggling to get out of a fix.
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dsc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:27 PM
Response to Original message
11. Nice labeling of this as an editorial BTW
As to a rebuttal. He provides evidence on only two things he sites. On the race thing I will say Dean shouldn't have said that. The Israel thing is just absurd. Presidents Carter, Clinton, and Bush 1 ALL presured Israel to give up settlements. To limited success to be sure but they did. That puts Dean's position in the mainstream of Presidents.

I will give him SS even though he cited nothing but that change dates back to 95. Care to discuss how many times say Kerry has changed since 95. The rest are undefended spun psuedo facts.
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DemBones DemBones Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:54 PM
Response to Reply #11
16. On the Social Security retirement age change: 6/22/03, Dean said

that he would "entertain" or "look at" raising the retirement age to 68. This was two separate statements by Dean on MTP, after Russert had read him a statement from 1995 in which he advocated raising the retirement age to 70. (Dean first said he didn't remember ever saying that but then agreed that he must have said it.)

I've posted the transcript from MTP here several times and it's lengthy so I hate to do it again. But I will if you continue to say "that change dates back to 95."

Not only did Dean talk about raising the retirement age to 68 as recently as June 22, 2003, but on August 5, 2003, at the AFL-CIO debate, he flatly denied that he'd EVER suggested raising the retirement age to 68 or 70. The next day he had to issue a statement saying he misspoke.

Or, as Oliphant would say, "DEAN LATER EXPLAINED."
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dsc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:57 PM
Response to Reply #16
18. I entertained the thought
of running in the Boston Marathon, climbing mount everest, and winning an Oscar. I haven't done those. If you don't know the difference between entertaining the thought of something and actually doing it crack open a dictionary.
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DemBones DemBones Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:04 PM
Response to Reply #18
25. More Dean denial. (Dean-ial?) When you run for president

and you say you will "entertain" taking a particular action, people will think that you would consider, and quite possibly take, that action.

Dean also said he would "look at" raising the Social Security retirement age to 68 and it's quite obvious that he didn't literally mean he would use his eyes to examine it.
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ant Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:43 PM
Response to Reply #25
35. what bugs me most about this
is that the ISSUE itself is lost, and both sides are to blame. Dean said X - no he didn't, he said modified X, blah, blah, blah.

The response to the claim "Dean said X" (or "Candidate Smith said X") should be one of two things:

1. No he didn't, he said Y, which is substantially different because...

or

2. Yes, he did say that, and here's why....(or, and here's what he was thinking then and why he says his position now has changed...it is OK for people to change their minds on issues, after all - we didn't all come out of the womb with the right ideas about everything.)

For instance, with the retirement age thing - SO WHAT if Dean "entertained" the idea (however you interpret "entertained")? Quite frankly I don't think it's a suggestion that people should dismiss outright. People today are living longer, staying healthier longer, etc., and it makes perfect sense to consider modifying our retirement system to fit that. Rather than hear people attacking him for simply saying it, and/or rather than hear him simply try to spin/wiggle out of it, I'd like to hear why people do or do not think we should raise the retirement age.
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Ediacara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 03:19 PM
Response to Reply #35
41. because the anti-Deanies want to catch him a waffle.
The retirement/SS age of 65 was chosen because that was the average life expectancy that year. In other words, the average age of all people that died.

People get older and the average life expectancy is in the late 70s today.

He entertained the idea of not raising the SS age to 79, but to 68 to keep it financially solvent, which is nothing close to 79.

He later decided against it, by saying that it's best to have the SS tax rate on those people with the highest income increased so that they're paying their fair share, rather than delaying the retirement of workers.

I personally think it should be a mixture of both, but both Dean and I know that it'd be political suicide to support that.
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dsc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 03:21 PM
Response to Reply #25
42. he did and chose not to
you are claiming he came out in favor of it. Looking at and considering something isn't comming out in favor of it.
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Ediacara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 03:24 PM
Response to Reply #42
44. he cannot find Mr Dictionary
and that's pretty much the bottom line on this.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 01:03 PM
Response to Reply #16
22. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
DemBones DemBones Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:06 PM
Response to Reply #22
26. See my post # 25.
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Ediacara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:08 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. I am really unsure what language you're speaking
but it clearly isn't English.

Entertain and support aren't by any stretch of the imagination the same thing.
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DemBones DemBones Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:30 PM
Response to Reply #27
31. You're reaching and you know it.

Why did he mention the age of 68 at all if he wasn't indicating he would consider making a change in the retirement age and HAD A SPECIFIC AGE IN MIND TO RAISE IT TO?

As used by Dean in this instance, "look at" and "entertain" mean "consider."

If he was considering it, he wasn't opposing it. If he was considering it, he was supportive enough of the idea to think it merited consideration.
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Ediacara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:34 PM
Response to Reply #31
32. oh come off it
you're the one who's reaching.

As used by any speaker of English, entertain and support are NOT the same word, and definately have different meanings.
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DemBones DemBones Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:44 PM
Response to Reply #27
37. BTW, nice job of getting into semantics and ignoring the fact

that Dean managed to "forget" between July 22, 2003, and August 5, 2003, that he had ever indicated support for raising the retirement age to 68 or 70.

Putting aside entirely his comments on July 22 about raising it to 68, let's look only at what Dean said on the issue of raising it to 70.

On MTP on July 22, 2003, Tim Russert read Dean his own statement from 1995 in which he (Dean) advocated raising the retirement age to 70. Dean first said he didn't remember ever saying that but then agreed that he said it. Russert asked him if he now supported raising it to 70 and he said he didn't.

But on August 5, 2003, at the AFL-CIO debate, Dean flatly denied that he'd EVER suggested raising the retirement age to 68 or 70. The next day he had to issue a statement saying he misspoke.

Or, as Oliphant would say, "DEAN LATER EXPLAINED."

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tedoll78 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:58 PM
Response to Reply #37
39. Do yourself a favor..
and look-up the word "entertain." I'll even help you along.

www.dictionary.com

And yes, I too have entertained the idea of dating Matt Damon.. lol..
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DrFunkenstein Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:59 PM
Response to Reply #11
20. When Did It Become About Israeli Settlements?
Last time I checked, Dean had called Hamas "soldiers" and we shouldn't "take sides." Nothing about settlements. And certainly nothing about military aid, loan guarantees, or backroom deals with ethnic lobbyists/controversial leaders.

The spin is making me dizzy. I'm sure that Dean is committed to destroying an "enormous" amount of settlements. He's certainly prepared to give them the firepower to do the job.
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dsc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 01:24 PM
Response to Reply #20
24. You might try reading the link
Mr. Olephant brings up the settlements and they were part of the context of the statement and part of his criticism. It isn't my spin and I expect an apology. You were lazy here.
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DrFunkenstein Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #24
29. I'm Sorry
Must have been my lazy eye. I hadn't read anything before about Dean saying we had to dismantle "nearly all" of the Israeli settlements (did he say that?), and it must have slipped right by me.

Also, this is not a real picture. It is Photoshop, I believe. Two separate pictures put together to imply that there is some sort of relationship between Dean and Sharon. But this is definitely not a real photo. Either that or Dean has some really disturbing wallpaper.

<>
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RevolutionStartsNow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:29 PM
Response to Original message
12. I like this part...
"...even as his campaign continues to rake in dollars, grass root workers, and Iowa and New Hampshire polling points..."
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sfwriter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:39 PM
Response to Original message
13. yeah, they did this with Gore...
They do it again.....

Leading Democratic candiddates get scrutinized. Fact of life.

-Sandy
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babzilla Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #13
23. media mired in glorifying their relevance
Edited on Sun Sep-14-03 01:46 PM by babzilla
Yet another example of the press explaining how important they are to the process.

The lesson Oliphant is trying to convey here is that all candidates should fear the press lest they call things black and white, oh and also provide good snacks for the press pool. As we all know now, it was the crappy sandwiches that Gore provided on the campaign trail plane that were really the turning point in the 2000 election. Not so much as a chocolate chip cookie as I heard it.

EVERY SERIOUS presidential candidate needs to live in fear of three simple words: "Smith later explained."

Here Tom is saying, respect our authoritaay (cartman voice) or we will whip out the three simple words on your ass and then you'll really be sorry you dirty flip-flopper.

The dangers of "Smith later explained" first became apparent in the media age in the pre-campaign of 1967, when the front-running Republican governor of Michigan (the late George Romney) went to Vietnam at the dawn of the credibility gap and said he'd been brainwashed -- before realizing that presidents shouldn't take office in that condition.

Romney spent weeks trying to say what he really meant, to the point that "Romney later explained" became part of his identity.

Romney was an affable peach of a guy, but his seemingly inevitable nomination prospects sank like a stone.


Okay, very bizarre anecdote there. Though Romney may have been an "affable peach of a guy" it was probably more the brainwashing talk that sunk him, rather than the "Romney later explained" line. Nevertheless, do not doubt the all powerful megalomaniacal media-ho's, because the story about the story is really what matters after all.

edit:sp and no dessert
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Ediacara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:55 PM
Response to Original message
17. Kucinich later explained
his position on abortion....

Kerry later explained his position on the war.....

Lieberman later explained his position on gay marriage (but I get an 85% from the HRC in years without DOMA legislation!!)....

etc etc etc...

As another poster stated, most of the "Dean later explained" stories are Dean clarifying misrepresentations of his positions by other candidates or the press. What's more, unlike Kerry's IWR position, his explanations make sense and don't linger to be asked again ans again by pundits.
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MrPeepers Donating Member (311 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-20-03 01:04 AM
Response to Reply #17
47. Kerry's
position on the war is perfectly sensible. In the real world there is a grey area. In order to get anything done, some power must be afforded to provide motivation. His vote was not so simple as to say "I vote no because I don't want to go to war" or to say "I voted yes because I do want to go to war." The fact is, there are more than 2 responses. Kerry's response was "I vote yes to give the President the power he needs to gain leverage in negotiations with Iraq, so that war may be avoided. If, however, the administration provides adequate evidence that war is nessicary and the international community supports that action, I give the administration authorization to utilize the military." I quote Senator Kerry, shortly after he made his vote. " would be one of the great catastrophic mistakes of our time and I will oppose it. . . . There is no justification whatsoever for sending Americans for the first time in American history as the belligerant, as the initiator of it, as a matter of first instance, without a showing of an imminent threat to our country." As you say, he is clarifying misrepresentations of his positions by other candidates and the press. Kerry isn't waffling on this issue, the other candidates have been over-simplifying.

Peepers
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Jim Sagle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 12:58 PM
Response to Original message
19. This thread ain't nuthin' but shit.
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MercutioATC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:08 PM
Response to Original message
28. Yawn
.
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DrFunkenstein Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:16 PM
Response to Reply #28
30. I Love The Yawn Posts
Ignoring the thread would be one thing, but the yawn is definitely a sign of anxiety. Admit it, you're shaking in your Birkenstocks.

:cry:

<>

Wow, he has the power to shrink to microscopic size...

<>

...and assume gigantic proportions!

Perhaps I have underestimated him!
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MercutioATC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 03:15 PM
Response to Reply #30
40. Ooooh yes! It's a nervous yawn!
Nick's running commentary on Dean frightens me so....

Mommy, make the bad man go away.
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DrFunkenstein Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:36 PM
Response to Original message
33. The Part I Found Compelling
The point is not that Dean would endanger Israel's security, which is absurd. The point is that he made a rookie mistake -- failing to recognize that the foundation of the US role in the Middle East is an unshakable commitment to Israel and that negotiation details are for the parties to resolve with our unceasing help.

In the give and take of politics, it was a goof, and Joe Lieberman was within his rights to call him on it -- in fact, he was right to do so. Rather than take the point before, during, and after the debate, Dean instead called Lieberman a demagogue and his criticisms despicable, desperate, and divisive. Dean's only regret was that he should have used a "different euphemism" instead of the highly charge "even-handed."

Every first-time presidential candidate -- many of whom get elected -- has a stumble or two making the transition from the relative quiet of supporters' living rooms to the brightly lit stage where every word gets examined. One of the legitimate tests of a candidacy, especially one with early promise or success, is how well it handles the inevitable bumps.

Dean is starting to show more hubris than humility in this atmosphere. One or two incidents probably don't matter, but he's flirting with critical mass.
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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-19-03 08:32 PM
Response to Reply #33
46. well said...
and I don't understand why the Deanut Gallery can't see that the more they make excuses for Dean's gaffes, the WORSE he'll get. If they want him to perform more statesmanlike, they should be more demanding.
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genius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 02:43 PM
Response to Original message
36. This is part of the reason he'll keep Bush in the White House
if he gets the nomination. I wish the Deanbots would wake up and realize that their guy is the best thing to happen to Bush.
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Ediacara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 03:22 PM
Response to Reply #36
43. Right..... and yet the "genius" supports Kucinich
He is seen (by most voters) as a screaming communist who wants to take guns away and hates the military, and can only scream rather than say anything constructive.

Kucinich couldn't win a single state, and would lose Ohio in a landslide because (although I may like the guy's ideas) he's too easily painted as a screaming communist.
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killbotfactory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-15-03 02:56 PM
Response to Original message
45. Candidates and press obsessed with parsing every word out of Dean's mouth
Edited on Mon Sep-15-03 02:57 PM by killbotfactory
Dean, Dean, Dean, Dean...
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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-20-03 02:58 PM
Response to Reply #45
49. I wish they had noticed his inconsistencies before
when they were busy giving him his free ride.
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