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Thursday, April 10, 2008

2008 Elections: Say What?

Hillary Clinton is now complaining that Barack Obama is outspending her in Pennsylvania. Hey, Hillary &mdash when you started your campaign, you had the most money, the biggest political machine, the best name recognition, and the biggest fundraisers in your pocket. Hell, you were the nation's First Lady for eight years and a Senator from New York for almost that long. Your name's been in the paper at least once per week for nearly two decades, now. Everybody expected you to walk off with the nomination a long time ago.

Nobody knew who the hell Barack Obama was.

In the past X months of campaigning, Barack Obama has raised more money than you, from individuals, not from PACs ($250). You have spent the huge financial advantage you started with and failed to raise enough to keep up, despite the fact that your money comes from businesses and PACs, not individuals.

You now owe money, and have not paid outstanding bills to the small businesspeople from whom you purchased goods and services. You have not paid for health coverage for your employees.

The Center for Responsive Politics shows that you owe nearly nine million dollars, and Senator Obama owes a little over half a million. How is this his fault? You took over one million dollars from PACs. Senator Obama took $250. He is outspending you not because he has some nefarious plan to buy the election but because you are broke. You started out with more money, you had this huge, supposedly efficient machine in place, and now you can't afford to buy ads in Pennsylvania. And this is Senator Obama's fault?

We at La Casa de Los Gatos were so firmly convinced that you would win the nomination that we didn't even bother investigating the candidates. We supported Kucinich, and when he quit, we moved to Edwards, but we were convinced you'd win.

And now you're complaining that Obama is buying more ads in Pennsylvania than you.

Your campaign has been a shambles and a disgrace. If this is how you manage your own money, you would not make a good guardian of the nation's money. Senator Obama has really impressed us by managing his money wisely. We're fiscal conservatives and social progressives. We are careful with our money and we want our leaders to be, also. We never spend more than we earn and we are careful not to incur debt. Judging from the figures shown at the Center for Responsive Politics, you now owe almost as much as you have available ($22 million of the Cash on Hand shown is for the General Election and must be returned if the candidate fails to secure the nomination).

And, how shameful, you flat-out lied about your trip to Bosnia. And you continued to lie even after Sindbad, who was there with you, publicly contradicted you and video clips appeared showing that your version of the events was a lie.

We understand that you overstated your qualifications in the foreign policy area. Recently, we read in the Huffington Post about Senator Obama's trip to California and some of the commenters on that article seemed utterly unhinged in their anger towards the candidate, decrying his lack of experience. What exactly is your experience, Senator Clinton? And what has it taught you about applying good judgment and learning from your experience?

Thanks to your comments about "bringing peace to Northern Ireland," we find to our great embarrassment that the Belfast Telegraph has a mortifying little column on your experience that makes Obama's comments about your "foreign policy experience" sound so much more realistic than your own.

To quote Lindy McDowell at the Belfast Telegraph:
The comedian Spike Milligan once published an autobiographical work about his Army service in World War II entitled Adolf Hitler: My Part in His Downfall. Spike, it goes without saying, was playing for laughs.

Not so Hillary Clinton, who as part of her current campaign for the Democratic nomination in the US has staked her own claim to fame in the always contentious field of foreign conflict resolution.

The Northern Ireland Troubles: My Part in Sorting Out That Lot.


Hillary Clinton - Ireland's Dalai O'Lama.

The role Hillary played in our peace process was, it seems, low-key, so low-key, in fact, that David Trimble, who jointly won the Nobel Prize for, er, helping bring peace to Northern Ireland can't quite remember it.
McDowell goes on to quote Lord David's cutting remarks:
"She visited when things were happening, saw what was going on, she can certainly say it was part of her experience. I don't want to rain on the thing for her but being a cheerleader for something is slightly different from being a principal player."
Good grief, Senator. Is there a foot-shooting competition you're taking part in that we ought to know about?

More ouch:
In her autobiography she describes a meeting at a cafe on the Lower Ormeau hosted by the late Joyce McCartan and attended by representatives from women's groups from both sides of the community.

Nothing new there, of course. Contacts between such groups have long been the norm here. Although an outsider mightn't guess that, the way Hillary tells it.

"I remember a meeting that I pulled together in Belfast, in the town hall there, bringing together for the first time Catholics and Protestants from both traditions, having them sitting a room where they had never been before with each other ... "

I know. Don't laugh.

I remember the visit to the cafe (town hall!) well. It was what's known in the business as a photo opportunity. Something to keep the presidential spouse occupied while the actual office bearer was getting down to business.

It was a short, staged event 'pulled together' by local organisers. Amid all the security men and Press photographers it was hardly conducive to real business.
We're afraid that this is the primary reason you lost our support. You don't seem to realize that the world has changed drastically since you were a young woman. News travels faster than the blink of an eye now. Whereas once, when you and we were young, Senator, one could make up fabulous tales of this or that strange land, today it is all available for download via Google.

So, when you say that you were instrumental in hosting a conference of great political and social import, it had better be true. Because if it is not, the "attendees" will find their way to your audience's eyes and ears forthwith and let them know what really happened. Much like the little Bosnian girl who greeted you with flowers and a poem on a tarmac in Tuzla.

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