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A different campaign in West Virginia

Mark Mardell | 09:00 UK time, Friday, 29 October 2010

"In West Virginia, we're a little different."

A single shot rings out. It's a graphic, even shocking image, of a Democratic politician physically sending a bullet through the president's programme, taking political aim at Obama.

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The TV ad is meant to appeal to men like Victor Stover.

The hills of West Virginia are clad in the red and gold of autumn, wreathed in early morning mist. Victor, lightweight bow in hand, arrows at the ready, stands stock still, all in camouflage, even down to a veil covering his face. Despite his lack of motion, no deer appear. No matter, he enjoys the peace of the countryside.

A coal miner for 15 years, he works at Walmart and is a registered Republican. But he likes the Democratic Governor Joe Manchin who's running to become West Virginia's senator, in the seat left vacant when the legendary Robert Byrd died earlier this year. In a Democratic state, it shouldn't be a tight race. But it is. Perhaps because of the president.

The race is very tight and the Republican John Raese has suggested the governor would "rubber stamp" all the president's proposals.

So in his advert, Mr Manchin presses all the hot buttons for Republicans like Victor. To the sound of country guitar, he loads a rifle, saying he is against restricting gun ownership, and against "Obamacare" a scornful term usually used by the right to attack the president's healthcare reform. Then, taking aim, he shoots through a piece of paper, representing a cap and trade bill, which would introduce a carbon tax, scarcely popular in this coal mining state. It a response to the advert of his opponent.

That both candidates are burnishing their anti-Obama credentials says just how far the president has fallen in public esteem, or at least in politicians' judgment of the electorate's mood. While West Virginia didn't even vote for Mr Obama in 2008, it is not an isolated case. Many Democrats don't want the president's support, or to be linked with him in any way. In Mississippi, a congressman has even gone so far as to let it be known that he voted for John McCain in 2008.

The Republican candidate in the last presidential election has been in West Virginia, supporting Mr Raese. Senator McCain told us the race is a reflection of the terrible state of the economy and "the legacy of this president". He says electing a Republican would be a "repudiation of the president" and jokes that Manchin is "running away from Obama as fast as he can: he should become a Republican and run against Rockefeller" (the state's other Democratic senator).

I catch up with Joe Manchin at a small rally at the Stonewood Volunteer Fire Department. He tells supporters that there is a "mean spirit" abroad, fostered by 24-hour cable tv, and that "hoping our leaders fail is hoping your country fails". This is a party crowd, so he is more subtle than in the advert, saying that Senator Byrd cared about what was right for West Virginia, what ever Democratic or Republican presidents thought, and he would be the same.

I ask him why he has distanced himself from the president.

"I don't know about distancing. We're a little different in West Virginia. The bottom line is that cap and trade is absolutely horrible, not just for this state but for the country."

So is it an advantage to be seen as separate from the president?

"I don't look at it that way at all. I look at what is best for West Virginia. And if we have differences they are respectful. No matter who the president is, Democrat or Republican and you can be different, that is what is so great about our country."

Victor Stover does intend to vote for Manchin. "He has a winning track record. As governor he's done an excellent job."

Although he voted for McCain, he claims not to be be swayed by the anti-Obama rhetoric, but says he likes the governor's independence of mind, rather echoing his phrases. "That's the good thing about this country, you have freedom of choice, freedom to distance yourself from a party. After all I am a registered Republican but I will vote for who'll do the best job."

Victor's son, Russell, is out hunting in the same woods, but his weapon is a rifle and his quarry squirrels. His politics are different too. He voted for Obama, who he'd give a B, or B-plus, and sees himself as an independent. He's currently studying for a postgraduate law degree, having worked for the FBI for some years. He seems at first scornful of the candidate's stance, saying that president is doing a thankless job.

"More and more people, even Democrats, are finding fault with the president, and want the public to see them as semi-independent."

But he, too, will vote for Mr Manchin and admits the independent stance helps.

"In some sense, it does. I don't want to compare it to rats leaving a sinking ship, but some people do that."

Comments

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  • 1. At 10:49am on 29 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    I don't want to compare it to rats leaving a sinking ship, but some people do that."




    MM, there is in politician, no, not in WV, who does not even admit he's a Democrat.

    He presents himself as a "local politican knowledgeable of and caring about local issues.".

    And there are many like him.



    Well, I gueess "all politics is local", at least this November. :)

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  • 2. At 11:34am on 29 Oct 2010, Ugo wrote:

    I don’t think getting a picture of a shooter with caption ‘aiming at Obama’ is appropriate. Is BBC not inciting violence?

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  • 3. At 12:22pm on 29 Oct 2010, KatStel wrote:

    Not all WV Democrats are "taking aim at Obabma". Most continue to support him in his most difficult job. Most are disgusted by Manchin's recent campaign adverts. Despite the obvious pandering to the LCD he's still better then the Republican alternative so many will hold their noses and vote for him for lack of a better option.

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  • 4. At 1:06pm on 29 Oct 2010, sktv wrote:

    Video is tasteless and inappropriate. Need to be removed.

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  • 5. At 1:19pm on 29 Oct 2010, Oldloadr wrote:

    2. At 11:34am on 29 Oct 2010, Ugo wrote:
    I don’t think getting a picture of a shooter with caption ‘aiming at Obama’ is appropriate. Is BBC not inciting violence?
    Because he shot a piece of paper, that is inciting violence? Damn, but someone is scared of his/her own shadow.

    I agree with McCain, if Manchin is against everything the Dems stand for, then why doesn't he switch parties? That would be the honest and honorable thing to do. He says he won't vote for Harry Reid for party leader, but that may be moot if Harry looses to Angle. I know he won't vote for Mitch. I hope the people of WV are able to see through this smoke and mirrors magic show that Manchin is putting on.

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  • 6. At 1:25pm on 29 Oct 2010, SaintDominick wrote:

    I am very disappointed by the BBC decision to post a picture with a title that could be easily interpreted as a call to violence. A simple review of some of the comments made in this blog during the past several months sshould be enough to realize that provocative pictures and topics like this are dangerous and unbecoming of a news organization that takes pride in its restraint, objectivity and norms of etiquette.

    Quite frankly, after this, any effort to "moderate" comments can only be regarded as a cynical attempt to demonstrate responsibility and decorum where none exists. This is very disappointing...and dangerous!

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  • 7. At 1:44pm on 29 Oct 2010, BluesBerry wrote:

    "In West Virginia, we're a little different."
    Are they?
    The fall in popularity for President Obama has been fairly uniform across the United States. As you say, "Many Democrats don't want the president's support, or to be linked with him in any way."
    Senator McCain has said that the "race is a reflection of the terrible state of the economy and 'the legacy of this president'".
    This is subterfuge: it's Obama's fault. If we just switch parties!
    How long before the Americans realize that it doesn't matter which party is in the Whitehouse, and it won't matter because the United States of America has become a plutocracy and its King - whoever that may be - sits on his throne, not in Washington, but on Wall-Street.
    So, is it an advantage to be seen as separate from the president?
    In plain language: It doesn't matter because Republican, Democrat doesn't matter?
    That's the bad thing about what's happening in the United States: You think you have freedom of choice, but the choice doesn't matter. You think you have the freedom to distance yourself from a party, but the distance will still keep you near to Wall-Street domination. You can see yourself as indepedent, but everyone depends on Wall-Street, and Wall-Street doesn't give a hoot about the common folk.
    Campaign? Campaign doesn't matter; money matters. Wall Street Matters. Elites matter; elitism matters.
    The American rats cannot leave the ship. Chances are they cannot even mortgage their nest in America, and if they do, there's always foreclosure.

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  • 8. At 1:45pm on 29 Oct 2010, Oldloadr wrote:

    4. At 1:06pm on 29 Oct 2010, SVKT wrote:
    Video is tasteless and inappropriate. Need to be removed.
    __________________________________________________________

    How can the video be inappropriate when it is germane to the conversation and representative of the culture in question? As far as tasteless: Tell me, do you complain about the women showing their breasts on National Geographic Documentaries?

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  • 9. At 2:11pm on 29 Oct 2010, Andy wrote:

    6. At 1:25pm on 29 Oct 2010, SaintDominick wrote:

    "I am very disappointed by the BBC decision to post a picture with a title that could be easily interpreted as a call to violence. A simple review of some of the comments made in this blog during the past several months sshould be enough to realize that provocative pictures and topics like this are dangerous and unbecoming of a news organization that takes pride in its restraint, objectivity and norms of etiquette.

    Quite frankly, after this, any effort to "moderate" comments can only be regarded as a cynical attempt to demonstrate responsibility and decorum where none exists. This is very disappointing...and dangerous!
    "


    I'm reminded of the phrase, "don't shoot the messenger".

    I do have some sympathy with part of you point though, the Beeb should think very carefully about spreading another's on-the-face-of-it, belligerent propaganda.

    I do wonder though how they should report if they cannot report anything the involves violence, etc?

    How should they report the words of OBL? State he's said some not very nice things?

    One can only sanitize so much before one distorts the truth out of all recognition.

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  • 10. At 2:25pm on 29 Oct 2010, mscracker wrote:

    I'm a member of the National Rifle Association & see nothing wrong in the video. If a politician symbolically lights a match to an unpopular bill,like the "Cap & Trade" is he inciting arson? Or encouraging pyromaniacs?
    Come on folks, it's election time in America & we still have the right to bear arms & make silly political commercials.(Actually,I thought this one was kind of enjoyable to watch, even though I'm not a Democrat.)

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  • 11. At 3:19pm on 29 Oct 2010, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 9, Andy

    "I do wonder though how they should report if they cannot report anything the involves violence, etc?"

    There is nothing wrong in reporting the antagonism and/or hatred that is evident among those that reject President Obama's policies or his presence in the White House, what I believe is wrong is to highlight a picture, video and a message that can be easily interpreted as a call to commit murder.

    A few days ago I watched images of a political rally in Kentucky that showed an unruly crowd knocking a 23-year old activist to the ground and a man stomping on her head with his feet.

    The meaning of both events is disturbing and its importance should not be minimized or portrayed as an example of campaign rhetoric or disagreement. Robust disagreement is one thing, aggravated assault and potential threats against the life of an individual is something entirely different.

    The difference between the way our news media reported the event in Kentucky and the way Mark chose to make a point may be limited to tone and style rather than substance, but I confess that I expected more from the BBC.

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  • 12. At 3:37pm on 29 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    Re #8


    Don't recall complaints about "Obama Girl" videos. :)

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  • 13. At 3:45pm on 29 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    How can one report, say, vulgar verbal abuse of the Swiss trying to renew their marriage vows in Maldives if one is allowed to say only that the mildest epithets use by a local MC were "pigs" and "infidels"?


    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-11648399

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  • 14. At 3:51pm on 29 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    Re no 10...


    remember target shooting boards depicting G.W.B.?

    [some with Hitler-type moustache added]

    I don't recall any protests then.

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  • 15. At 4:05pm on 29 Oct 2010, RomeStu wrote:

    So democrats accross the board are pandering to the rise of the Tea Party by distancing themselves from Obama and his policies.

    Obama has been stymied in his aims by entrenched interests on both sides of the house, and now after only 2 years during the worst recession for 80 years (and with 2 expensive inherited wars to pay for) members of his own party are disowning him.

    This tragic blend of impatience and ignorance will hand the USA to the interest groups and religious fundamentalists of the extreme right and the world will look on in confusion that knee-jerk politics can so successfully derail social progress.

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  • 16. At 4:06pm on 29 Oct 2010, Tinkersdamn wrote:

    In politics, candidates have to do what they believe will work. In W. Va., I can see Manchin's ad as one that works. It addresses people's concern that they'll be reduced from a working life that can support their family, to working for Wal-Mart.

    Not too long ago, revelations occurred regarding ads that Wal-Mart thought would work. The Walton family, owners of Wal-Mart, had funnelled revenue to Republican candidates running ads against social services spending. At the same time, Wal-Mart was having difficulty retaining personnel who were trying to survive on their fallen wages. Wal-Mart initiated an in-house program to educate their employees (associates) on how to sign up for and receive funds from these social service programs that their low incomes allowed them to qualify for, while the Wal-Mart corporation continued to lobby Washington for the destruction of these programs. They did what they thought would work.

    If we step from the trees far enough to see the forest, we really might wonder- Why does this work?

    At least as far as Manchin's ad is concerned, until there is a credible program, virtually on the ground and ready to go (in spite of all the Republican and corporate hurdles that will be thrown against it), to put people to work in green energy fields, people's concern that they'll be left in dire straights isn't without foundation.

    (BTW, I'm glad the BBC showed us this ad.)

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  • 17. At 4:07pm on 29 Oct 2010, marieinaustin wrote:

    As for the fleeing rats, politicians are rarely willing to go down to the sea in ships. If it turns out they’re truly becoming more purple and not merely trying to get elected by pulling away from party affiliation, we might get a bipartisan Congress yet (just hypothetical - not holding my breath). We may even have Obama to thank for it – ha ha!

    Interesting: no doubt that there are going to be voters who learn about their candidate’s party as they’re standing in the polling booth turning the dial.

    The other night, I watched a local news bite about early voting. The reporter demonstrated a website for locals to “learn about the candidates and where they stand on the issues.” The reporter said (paraphrase): “Next to each candidate’s picture, there’s a link to THEIR ADS.” And she clicked on a link and one of those commercials began playing. Now that’s news AND information. God help us.

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  • 18. At 4:10pm on 29 Oct 2010, baircash wrote:

    Am I the only one who gets this? Its all about coal. Coal mining provides most of the well paying , unsafest jobs in the state. its felt that Cap & trade has the potential to undermine (pardon the pun) the industry. Consequently politicians pig pile on top of each other as to who can be the most rabid coal defender. We could go further about the subliminal ticklers in the add. Hunting? Another huge deal in WVA. Right to bear arms for your own defense. Big deal there. Making Manchin seem like one of the boys. Might have missed that. Has that gentleman farmer look.

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  • 19. At 4:17pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    Well, a lot of people are taking 'political aim' at Obama and his programs, because of wanting to distance themselves. Buts its one thing to promote violence, its another to use metaphors. The commercial is more metaphorical than anything towards Obama's programs and not the man, himself. I don't agree with some of the divisive stances Obama has taken, but I would never, ever promote any kind of violence toward him or another party's members.

    I can't say I'm as worried as St. Dom or others are, though, cause' our security for Obama is the best security in the world. Its the type of security that is worth more than money or gold. If anyone can protect the President, its America.

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  • 20. At 4:24pm on 29 Oct 2010, hms_shannon wrote:

    8. At 1:45pm on 29 Oct 2010, Oldloadr wrote:
    _____________________________________________________

    How can the video be inappropriate when it is germane to the conversation and representative of the culture in question? As far as tasteless: Tell me, do you complain about the women showing their breasts on National Geographic Documentaries?
    -----------------
    Women showing breasts,when!! where!!,how come I always miss every thing.
    I do not wish to be unkind,but Old Victor with the bow reminds me of
    Elmor Fudd,or is that MA2 incognito.As for taking up arms against any one
    I missed that one as well! I seem to be missing every thing these days.

    Except, http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11640129

    I did think to post this one "on don`t ask don`t tell" thread after reading its last sentence ,but no!, I am not going there...

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  • 21. At 4:24pm on 29 Oct 2010, mscracker wrote:

    I fail to see how a candidate target-shooting at a piece of legislation which is corrently unpopular with both political parties, translates into violence against any individual?
    What do they call tranferring one's motives on to another in psychology-projection?
    Here in the country, folks use empty beer cans as targets.I don't think beer company executives have anything to fear. It would be just as silly.

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  • 22. At 4:37pm on 29 Oct 2010, Echotheword wrote:

    The video proves the extreme of what measures the Republicans will take to scare their voters. They love their guns and propaganda of the "end of the world" beliefs. They are racist and believe all Muslims are terrorist. They do not want to protect our environment or wildlife.
    # 18- Baircash-you are right about the coal industry. Money...Money...Money!

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  • 23. At 4:40pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    Guns and NRA is fairly commonplace in America. Mark Mardell actually did an article on it a while back, about shopping with guns or something...anyhew, guns are normal in our society, whether its tv/movies/video games or in real life. Here, deer-hunting is a sport, lots of gun clubs and it is much needed because otherwise the deer would overrun the people. Guns are just part of the American culture.
    Manchin is wise to show that he will stand up for right to bear arms.

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  • 24. At 4:42pm on 29 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    "At least as far as Manchin's ad is concerned, until there is a credible program, virtually on the ground and ready to go (in spite of all the Republican and corporate hurdles that will be thrown against it), to put people to work in green energy fields, people's concern that they'll be left in dire straights isn't without foundation."




    If you watch Manchin's ad again, you'll notice his not talking about jobs and unemployment, but, among other things, about his intention to defend 2nd Amendment and fight for a removal of some portion's of BHO's so called health reform.


    Issues which are not employment related but which seem to resonate strongly with the governor's constituency.

    Otherwise he'd obviously concentrate on Wal-Mart and its labor practices.

    Or windmills as a way of the future.








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  • 25. At 4:47pm on 29 Oct 2010, PickledPete wrote:

    LucyJ @19:
    "If anyone can protect the President, its America".

    ===============================

    Err. Sorry, Lucy, but history points in the other direction. The US has a worse track record of assassinations and attempted assassination of its leader than most, if not all, other western democracies. It is one of the reasons that the citizens of those other democracies look in bewilderment at the obsessive gun culture that many Americans cite as one of their "freedoms". Maybe freedom means different things to different people.

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  • 26. At 4:50pm on 29 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    "I fail to see how a candidate target-shooting at a piece of legislation which is corrently unpopular with both political parties, translates into violence against any individual?"



    Has congressman who during the State of Union address yelled at some point to pres. Obama: "You're lying!" - incited violence?

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  • 27. At 4:57pm on 29 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    "Here, deer-hunting is a sport, lots of gun clubs and it is much needed because otherwise the deer would overrun the people."




    Lucy there were two movies about Vietnam veterans released simultaneously:

    "Coming Home" with John Voight and Jane Fonda

    and "Deer Hunter" with Christopher Walken and Robert de Niro.

    Guess which one (Oscar aside) do people still remember and rent or even buy on DVD and which one they don't. :)

    [a hint: no, not because of a deer hunt portrayed in one of them]

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  • 28. At 5:04pm on 29 Oct 2010, marieinaustin wrote:

    Now, if it had been a Republican shooting at a windmill...

    Lately, I haven't laughed enough from this forum. So today, thank you ukwales for: “when!! where!!,how come I always miss every thing.” :-)

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  • 29. At 5:07pm on 29 Oct 2010, Tinkersdamn wrote:

    #24:

    I agree entirely he struck those other issues you mentioned- all part of a harmony which is why I described it as an ad that works for his state, but I also kept my eye on the target, which was cap and trade, which in W. Va. is jobs and the risk of un- or underemployment.

    As for windmills and implementing health care in a way that works, I've got my eyes on California and another candidate who knows what works for his state even when he's outspent eight to one.

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  • 30. At 5:14pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    Pete 25,
    The assassinations that happened in the past were back in the day, a time when security wasn't taken seriously enough and when unfortantely, people let their guard down. Although most people are good people, sadly, whether past, present or future, there will always be crazies here and there. But that's part of life. You have to expect crazies.
    Today our country has made many changes and our modern day technology only helps advance security measures.
    With the current threats, the techonology also keeps being updated and is adaptable/flexible to protect in any given situation.
    When Bush was Pres., there were many threats towards him coming from all directions. Yet, the closest Bush came to being harmed was that incident with those shoes being thrown, of which Bush ducked and missed, joked about the shoe size. A Pres. has to be quick on his feet.
    President Obama has the best security in the world.

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  • 31. At 5:17pm on 29 Oct 2010, dceilar wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 32. At 5:58pm on 29 Oct 2010, Philly-Mom wrote:

    West Virginia.
    Beautiful State.
    Mountains. Lakes. Rugged Wilderness. Fishing. Hunting.
    Coal. Gas. Military. Unions.

    I have some friends in Martinsburg whom I haven't visited in far too long, but I just finished off my home-made scrapple supply, so it's time for another visit.

    You might be able to find a state in the USA with more 'blue-collar workers'... but I'm not sure what state that would be.

    Obama looks just a bit too much like an over-educated 'Whine and Cheese Democrat' for the good gun-owning democrats of WVA. (Sry Mr.O) I don't think the Dem.s should take it personal and I don't think matter is too dramatic. It just is what it is. Ya know?

    There's this great little place for BBQ, Baked Sweet Potatoes, Fresh Bread and Sweet Tea. Deer... Turkey... Duck...
    -- Dang. I'm gettin' hungry.

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  • 33. At 5:59pm on 29 Oct 2010, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    30. At 5:14pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    "The assassinations that happened in the past were back in the day, ..."

    Ouch.

    The attempted assassination of Gerald Ford was in 1976 (?)
    The attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan was in 1981.

    For many of us, those are fairly recent events.


    Not unlike the "Bob Dylan was my Dad's favorite musician ..." effect.

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  • 34. At 6:06pm on 29 Oct 2010, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    15. RomeStu.

    Couldn't have said it better.

    Sort of reminds you of Gary Cooper being deserted by the feckless townspeople in "High Noon".

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  • 35. At 6:08pm on 29 Oct 2010, Philly-Mom wrote:

    @ MSCracker: I don't mind the NRA. Really.

    But I DO think the USA could do a better job enforcing the gun laws we have instead of writing new ones all the time, and it REALLY pisses me off that a Philly Kid was shot by a guy with a FL Gun License... who had been rejected for such a licence by PA...
    (Get FL Guns Laws Off Philly Streets. Now. Please.)
    -- But, I digress...

    Rather, I'd like to express the personal opinion that every Politician who fires a gun on a fear-mongering commercial should show the target they just shot.
    Srsly. I'm curious.
    - How many of them are actual marksmen?
    - And how many of them just play with guns to look cool and win votes?
    - Hmmmm...?

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  • 36. At 6:29pm on 29 Oct 2010, steelpulse wrote:

    You see Mark? Gun-totting. I just realised - I cannot comment without censure. So will delete all my already written thoughts and the rather feeble joke and sign off.

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  • 37. At 6:59pm on 29 Oct 2010, Andy wrote:

    23. At 4:40pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    "Guns and NRA is fairly commonplace in America. Mark Mardell actually did an article on it a while back, about shopping with guns or something...anyhew, guns are normal in our society, whether its tv/movies/video games or in real life. Here, deer-hunting is a sport, lots of gun clubs and it is much needed because otherwise the deer would overrun the people. Guns are just part of the American culture."

    You missed out pillage, torture, abuse, obesity, neutrality in the face of genocide, greed, superiority, fundamentalism, belligerence and Coca Cola.

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  • 38. At 7:01pm on 29 Oct 2010, DenverGuest wrote:

    6. At 1:25pm on 29 Oct 2010, SaintDominick wrote:
    I am very disappointed by the BBC decision to post a picture with a title that could be easily interpreted as a call to violence. A simple review of some of the comments made in this blog during the past several months should be enough to realize that provocative pictures and topics like this are dangerous and unbecoming of a news organization that takes pride in its restraint, objectivity and norms of etiquette.
    Quite frankly, after this, any effort to "moderate" comments can only be regarded as a cynical attempt to demonstrate responsibility and decorum where none exists. This is very disappointing...and dangerous!
    -------------------------------------------------
    For probably the first time ever I disagree with you, and with all the other concerned folks who would prefer that the BBC not participate in disseminating this piece of video.
    One of the rules I live by: "The truth shall set you free."
    This is what is going on in the USA at this moment in time. This is the message being sent out by the shock troops, sometimes I refer to them as the "Radio Milles Collines", of the right wing.
    I hear Glenn Beck refer to liberalism as a "mental disorder", implying that those on the left are somehow mentaly defective. I hear Sarah Palin saying "reload".
    Villifying the opposition as somehow "less than" and using violent imagery are de rigeur.
    Perhaps the best place for these facts to be aired is in an International forum such as this one.

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  • 39. At 7:05pm on 29 Oct 2010, Andy wrote:

    30. At 5:14pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    "The assassinations that happened in the past were back in the day, a time when security wasn't taken seriously enough and when unfortantely, people let their guard down. Although most people are good people, sadly, whether past, present or future, there will always be crazies here and there."

    From a UK perspective, it's more "there", from your perspective, I agree it would be "here".


    "But that's part of life. You have to expect crazies."

    Moreso in the good ol' US of A.


    "Today our country has made many changes and our modern day technology only helps advance security measures."

    Yup. The Patriot Act; Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act and other surveilence legislations; invokeding the State Secrets Privilege, all designed to keep an eye on the good ol' American. Wonder if it has something to do with increasing security due to the many assassination attempts.


    "President Obama has the best security in the world."

    Until it fails, which hopefully it never will but that's always the hope - ask JFK, ah, he's dead.

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  • 40. At 7:16pm on 29 Oct 2010, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 15, RomeStu

    "So democrats accross the board are pandering to the rise of the Tea Party by distancing themselves from Obama and his policies."

    Some of us believe President Obama has done the best that could be expected under extremely difficult circumstances, but there are many Democrats that are doing a lot more than just distancing themselves from the President and his policies.

    When I went to vote last week (we have early voting in Florida) the place was packed and I had to wait in line to vote. Two of my neighbors were there, one is a Republican and judging by the signs that adorn his abode there is little doubt how he voted, the other is a lifelong Democrat who told me that he voted Republican for the first time in his life!

    I am sure you already noticed that criticisms of President Obama's policies range from claims of Obama being a do-nothing president to being an overly ambitious president whose agenda will destroy America. Alas, even financial reform designed to protect the interests of consumers is regarded as evil by consumers who, apparently, reject anything that would constrain the ability of financial institutions to rip us off! The truth is that it doesn't matter what President Obama does or doesn't do, people want him out and if there was a way to do it immediately a lot of people would be happy to remove him from office long before 2012.

    After decades of ambivalence or complacency most Americans finally realize that our recurring budget deficits and national debt are unsustainable, that the trade deficits are unsustainable, that the jobs that once allowed our middle class to live in relative comfort and pursue their dreams are gone, that we do not have the money to modernize our infrastructure and invest in R&D, and that many of our fellow Americans lack the skills to fill the jobs that are available and, therefore, can only hope to get a $8 an hour job in a retail store.

    Most people understand that these problems began long before President Obama was elected, but they also know that he was fully aware of what he was getting into when he ran for office, and since he has been unable to perform a miracle and bring us back to happy days are here again it is time to replace him with a new medicine man.

    The Tea Party proposal to lower taxes further at a time when we are running huge budget deficits is a recipe for disaster, reducing the size of government at a time when our unemployment rate is close to 10% is insane, and rejecting public investment at a time when that is the only thing that is keeping our economy from total collapse is, clearly, not a very good idea, but they know that when people are afraid they tend to hang on to anything, no matter how illogical it may be, especially if it does not involve personal sacrifice, and in that context what is happening is not surprising.

    It will be interesting to see what happens when the GOP controls the House, but you can bet they will not be blamed if anything goes wrong - the President will be - and they will take credit if things improve as a result of the policies put in place by Democrats.

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  • 41. At 7:23pm on 29 Oct 2010, mscracker wrote:

    At 6:59pm on 29 Oct 2010, Andy wrote: You missed out pillage, torture, abuse, obesity, neutrality in the face of genocide, greed, superiority, fundamentalism, belligerence and Coca Cola.

    *************************************************************
    Coca Cola??? Right in there with pillage & torture? Oh me....
    What does any of this have to do with a conversation re a West VA political commercial?
    "Philly-Mom" has a good point about political candidates being able to back up their hunting/marksmanship claims.I wonder how many shots it took Gov. Manchin to nail that Cap & Trade Bill? Good shot or not, if he's a West VA boy, I bet he's pretty familiar with firearms, & hunting's not just a sport in America, it's a way to fill the freezer.

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  • 42. At 7:24pm on 29 Oct 2010, TimR1944 wrote:

    #23

    LucyJ

    Guns are just part of the American culture.
    Manchin is wise to show that he will stand up for right to bear arms.

    ----------------------------------------

    American culture is as varied as the nation itself. In WV the hunting culture is a very significant factor. In other parts of the country it doesn't exist at all.

    This ad is tasteless, obnoxious and rather pathetic. Manchin and other Democrats in swing states and conservative-leaning states are running, screaming into the streets as far away from Obama as they possibly can. They are making every imaginable mistake. This ad is a pitiful attempt to convince people they aren't really Democrats.

    Will it work? I doubt it. They are running against their own party's interests. If they win, they may disagree with the Dem leadership but they will help push the balance of power in favor of the Democrats.

    It will be interesting to see how the campaign of 2012 is run. How will Obama run in WV and these states where even the Democrats are openly opposed to him? The Dems are playing a foolish, self-defeating game and this ad is an example of a party in free-fall.

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  • 43. At 7:25pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    33 IF wrote: For many of us, those are fairly recent events.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Not for all of us. 1981 was before I was born, so to me, that is 'back in the day'...to you, 'back in the day', is probably more like 60's?
    Were you a hippie, IF? ;)
    Anyhew, techonology has really gone through the roof the last 30 years...beyond human's wildest dreams...and its still going on, on, on...
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    37 Andy,
    All your comments except Coca Cola are negative...if you look for negative, you will find negative. If you look for positive, you will find positive. But if you only give one side a chance, well, you will get what you expect, cause' you aren't going the full distance...

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  • 44. At 7:40pm on 29 Oct 2010, Keith wrote:

    Why do some commentators and indeed the author of this article believe it is shocking to show a video of a rifle being used to shoot a poster promoting a law? It is an act similar in meaning to using the paper as toilet paper or setting it on fire. I can see a world of difference between shooting a piece of paper and a person, I pity those who cannot. I can differentiate between an act to show contempt for someone's policies by shooting the paper and any threat to the person of the President. I expect the candidate shooting would be the one of the first to defend the President from any physical assault.

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  • 45. At 7:41pm on 29 Oct 2010, hadamsUSA wrote:

    I guess in the UK the ad is totally offensive and shocking but I think it is good you showed it just to give a clear picture of how divisive American politics has become because of Mr. Obama’s agenda. The likely shift in the US House of Representatives is more remarkable because there will be so few moderates left from either party.
    November 3rd a more interesting debate starts. What is going to happen to the Bush tax cuts? They expire 12/31/2010. Mr. Obama doesn’t want to go back on a campaign promise of end the Bush tax cuts; however, the Bush tax cuts did help the country recover from a stock market crash and in many ways are better designed to help the economy then the Obama stimulus plan. (So few remember Mr. Bush took over the White House after the .com stock crash, and shortly before 9/11. A stock investment crisis is why the tax cuts got created. The problem is that too much money ended up inflating real estate prices, and depressing bond yields.)
    I have a feeling they are not going to get renewed, and a weak recover may stall. It’s going to be a very interest next two months in America. Depending what happens may predict if Mr. Obama seeks reelection in 2012.

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  • 46. At 7:46pm on 29 Oct 2010, Andy wrote:

    LucyJ,
    "
    Andy:
    "You missed out pillage, torture, abuse, obesity, neutrality in the face of genocide, greed, superiority, fundamentalism, belligerence and Coca Cola."

    All your comments except Coca Cola are negative
    "

    Blimey, and here was me thinking Coca Cola was the negative one, being bad for Americans' teeth an' all while the rest are Protecting Americas and our Way of Life.

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  • 47. At 7:55pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    42. Tim,
    I agree that the ad is Democrats trying to claim they are not really Democrats, so this begs the question: How can a politician not support their own party? Isn't that selling out? Even when the ship went down for the Repubs at the end of Bush era, the Repubs didn't claim they weren't Repubs, did they? Although at that time, I do remember many people switching to either Independent or Democrat...now these people are switching back again...

    Of course, we all saw what happened when that one politician switched parties from Repub to Dem and then he was voted out...personally, I think it should be illegal for a politician to switch parties after he or she is elected, because otherwise it is taking vote away from people.

    Anyhow, will it work? Maybe they are selling out, but it comes down to the politician himself and how much the people have interacted with him. If he has really made the rounds and the people got to know him, they might not care. Also, because he's shooting guns in the ad, many voters likely can relate to him. (Just think of Scott Brown and his pick-up truck)

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  • 48. At 8:09pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    Andy:
    "You missed out pillage, torture, abuse, obesity, neutrality in the face of genocide, greed, superiority, fundamentalism, belligerence and Coca Cola."

    All your comments except Coca Cola are negative"

    Blimey, and here was me thinking Coca Cola was the negative one, being bad for Americans' teeth an' all while the rest are Protecting Americas and our Way of Life.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Andy,

    Who doesn't like a little Coca Cola now and then?
    Moderation is key.

    But how funny is it that you put obesity as a crime?
    Really?
    Tells a lot about ya...



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  • 49. At 8:22pm on 29 Oct 2010, DenverGuest wrote:

    Ref 38, DenverGuest:
    Crikey. Mea culpa. I missed the point that this guy was a Democrat. That's what I get for multi-tasking.
    It's no less reprehensible coming from a Democrat. It's the direction in which discourse is headed, and I'll say it again, it is being pushed in that direction by the right wing and their non-stop propaganda machine to stomp the President. In this environment, Mr. Manchin has made the regrettable decision to pander to the lowest common denominator and use the same (winning) tactics as his opponents. He may win, but at what cost?

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  • 50. At 8:23pm on 29 Oct 2010, BBCnewsbloggin wrote:

    Dear BBC news website editors,

    What ON EARTH are you up to ?!! were you in a rush to get to the pub early.. ? couldn't be bothered to engage your brains while combining the title words "Taking aim at Obama" with a photo of a man taking aim through the telescopic site of a rifle.

    So, as you might have gathered, I would like to complain about this. It's disgraceful.

    But actually it seems pointless. I think it's impossible that you didn't realise how potentially inflammatory and despicable this word/image combination is. Might I suggest you go work for a tabloid or actually please just leave journalism. Thanks.

    Before I get the inevitable rebuffs, this is NOT a complaint about the report itself, the advert or internal US politics (although if I was, I'd agree with RomeStu, no.15).

    Tomorrow (with your hangover) you have the following choice:
    - Either just rephrase the title or change the video still (the latter would be better).
    Then on Monday, another choice:
    - Type out your apology to BBC news website readers or your resignation letter.
    simples.

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  • 51. At 8:46pm on 29 Oct 2010, Scott0962 wrote:

    The ad isn't so surprising in a year when Democrats in general are unpopular and President Obama's agenda is even more unpopular. Gov. Manchin is a career politician who seems to have a keen sense of which way the wind is blowing. Gun control is a vote loser, cap and trade threatens jobs in his state where coal mining is a major industry and if "Obama Care" was so wonderful why did they pass it in such a rush without debate or even a chance to read the bill?

    And to those criticize Manchin for not toeing the party line and sticking his neck out to defend the Democrat's record over the last two years, if he thought that would help him win he would be doing just that. What do expect from a career politician, ironclad principles to be stuck to win or lose? Good luck finding many politicians with those. It's all about winning, losers have zero impact come January when the new Congress is sworn in.

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  • 52. At 9:02pm on 29 Oct 2010, TimR1944 wrote:



    #50 bbcnewsbloggin

    What ON EARTH are you up to ?!! were you in a rush to get to the pub early.. ? couldn't be bothered to engage your brains while combining the title words "Taking aim at Obama" with a photo of a man taking aim through the telescopic site of a rifle.

    So, as you might have gathered, I would like to complain about this. It's disgraceful.

    But actually it seems pointless. I think it's impossible that you didn't realise how potentially inflammatory and despicable this word/image combination is. Might I suggest you go work for a tabloid or actually please just leave journalism. Thanks.

    ------------------------


    I quite agree. They took a foolish ad, removed its already questionable context, and transformed into hysterical tabloid junk and pasted on an inflammatory label.

    However, I find a similar carelessness very often here. The point is anti-Americanism - not serious news. There is so much here that is deliberately and appallingly offensive and insulting to Americans that this is simply the most disgraceful example.

    The BBC is in desperate need of house-cleaning. Xenophobia is, unfortunately, an enjoyable sport for cowards, but is it really worth it when it is taken to these extremes?

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  • 53. At 9:34pm on 29 Oct 2010, crash wrote:

    Who would align themselves with some one who at the slightest hint of negativity uturns faster than a liberal facing logic.Our community activist in charge hopefully has done all the damage he can do in one term,hopefully we can start promoting freedom of speech and get back to being America again and not a copy of the EUSSR.

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  • 54. At 9:48pm on 29 Oct 2010, Tinkersdamn wrote:

    It seems to me a lot of misimpressions are appearing in these postings. I believe people will find the stances of W.Va. Democratic Sen. candidate Manchin are entirely consistent with his own public record as well as very largely with the records of Democratic W.Va. Sen. Jay Rockefeller and the late Democratic W.Va. Sen. Robert Byrd whose seat Manchin seeks to fill. I don't think any of these men could be considered 'anti-Obama', or 'anti-Democrat', they are simply representing their constituents. Manchin has put his positions in a more dramatic manner than may be typical as a result of facing a very tight election in a tough year for Democrats.

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  • 55. At 9:58pm on 29 Oct 2010, mscracker wrote:

    To really qualify for the late Sen. Byrd's seat he needs to learn to play the fiddle as well as shoot targets.
    Sen. Byrd's politics weren't to my taste but he was an awesome fiddle player at the State Fair.

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  • 56. At 9:59pm on 29 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 52 TimR1944 wrote:

    "The point is anti-Americanism - not serious news. There is so much here that is deliberately and appallingly offensive and insulting to Americans that this is simply the most disgraceful example"

    Congratulations Timmy!

    You have now posted your one millionth contribution whining about anti-Americanism.

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  • 57. At 10:13pm on 29 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    This may not be strictly relevant to this topic. However every so often someone posts here telling us that the US is the land of opportunity, where anyone can get ahead, unlike those nasty socialist States like Yerp (Australia, Canada, Japan, etc etc). They never seem to provide any evidence however.

    http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/10_44/b4201008238184.htm?campaign_id=rss_null

    “The Inequality Delusion - Americans think the U.S. has far more income equality than it has. They want it to be even fairer. Yet they hate the policies that would make it so”

    “Ariely and Norton found that Americans think they live in a far more equal country than they in fact do. On average, those surveyed estimated that the wealthiest 20 percent of Americans own 59 percent of the nation's wealth; in reality the top quintile owns around 84 percent. The respondents further estimated that the poorest 20 percent own 3.7 percent, when in reality they own 0.1 percent.

    And when asked to give their ideal distribution, they described, on average, a nation where the wealth distribution looks not like the U.S. but like Sweden, only more so—the wealthiest quintile would control just 32 percent of the wealth, the poorest just over 10 percent. "People dramatically underestimated the extent of wealth inequality in the U.S.," says Ariely. "And they wanted it to be even more equal."

    The United States, according to this study, is a nation of people who would like to spread the wealth around. They just don't know it.”

    “With the nation on the cusp of one of the angrier elections in recent memory, perhaps it's enough to focus on Ariely and Norton's most basic finding. In an era of political vitriol, their results show a remarkable degree of consensus. Rich and poor, Republican and Democrat—all those surveyed shared a similar vision of what they thought America looked like and what a fairer society would be. It's not much, but it suggests that, at least in our egalitarianism and our ignorance, we are all alike.”

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  • 58. At 10:18pm on 29 Oct 2010, McJakome wrote:

    Powermeerkat,
    If, 5 or 6 years ago, you had posted a picture of someone with a rifle and a title of something LIKE "taking aim at Bush" are you really sure no one would have objected and/or criticized.

    Are you really sure the dart board type art you mentioned went uncriticized in RED states?

    Are you really sure that people in dark suits and dark sunglasses would not have arrived at your door and asked you to go for a ride with them [and no, I don't mean black panthers, I mean Secret Service, and/or FBI, and/or ATF, and/or a SWAT team]?

    I have said before that this kind of stunt is more destabilizing than it appears. Why is it more unthinkable that a culture war could tear the country apart than to think slavery [or slavery plus economic factors] could [and did]? I can't decide whether it is just stupidity or whether it is being done deliberately, and with great malice!

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  • 59. At 10:20pm on 29 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 60. At 10:31pm on 29 Oct 2010, diverticulosis wrote:

    57. At 10:13pm on 29 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    "This may not be strictly relevant to this topic. However every so often someone posts here telling us that the US is the land of opportunity, where anyone can get ahead, unlike those nasty socialist States like Yerp (Australia, Canada, Japan, etc etc). They never seem to provide any evidence however.

    http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/10_44/b4201008238184.htm?campaign_id=rss_null"

    Yes it's not relevant to the topic and it also makes no sense. What does wealth distribution and opportunity have to do with each other. Opportunity gives every body (no matter what social class they are in to achieve), equality .... well makes every body equal and therefore opportunity to improve ones social status is moot.

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  • 61. At 10:39pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    JMM wrote: a culture war

    Started with Bush when the country was split over whether or not to go to war, then the country basically divided in half- those for and against, until we elected Obama, then we mostly bonded again, until Obama took stances on divisive issues, which split us into half again...

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  • 62. At 11:13pm on 29 Oct 2010, Tinkersdamn wrote:

    #57 John_From_Dublin:

    Thanks for the link. When the Ariely/Norton paper is published I'll try to pick it up.... if I can afford it.
    In addition to spiralling wealth inequality, over the last fifteen years or so, the only sector of our economy to outstrip even the health care industry costs have been the costs of higher education- reducing even further a growing number of people's opportunity. The implications are troublesome.

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  • 63. At 11:27pm on 29 Oct 2010, ARISESIRCRAIGWHYTE wrote:

    Hi Mark

    This is the first time i have read your blog.

    I thought this was a fascinating peice. Can you imagine a Conservative MP in the UK distancing him/herself from DC in such a way, it's almost unthinkable.

    Isn't the problem that O is simply moving to far too the left, i know it sounds a bit simplistic but i have always though of Americans as right of centre generally.

    Some Americans need to grow up and live in the real world. Their gun laws are almost draconian. Their culture is dreadful at times, this sense of entitelment that they have is unwarranted and far fetched. Greatest country in the world? I'm afraid not. Major culture change required!

    It must be said, it is hard not too feel sorry for O, he was left a terrible mess by G.W.B and is fighting a losing battle with tired American attitudes.

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  • 64. At 11:57pm on 29 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 60 diverticulosis wrote:
    “Yes it's not relevant to the topic and it also makes no sense. What does wealth distribution and opportunity have to do with each other. Opportunity gives every body (no matter what social class they are in to achieve), equality .... well makes every body equal and therefore opportunity to improve ones social status is moot.”

    I don't really think anyone who could perpetrate that third sentence should be lecturing anyone else on what does or doesn’t make sense.

    The gist of the article was summed up by the headline, ie that Americans think their society is more equal than it is, and that it is in fact less equal than they want it to be.

    Granted, there are various types of equality, notably equality of opportunity v equality of outcome. If the US were genuinely the land of opportunity, one would expect that it would have more social mobility than other countries. However, as the article states ‘The U.S. now has the world's second-lowest level of income mobility between generations, after England, according to research by economist Miles Corak at the University of Ottawa’.

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  • 65. At 00:09am on 30 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 59

    My "comment has been referred for further consideration"

    OK - I started by quoting StD at # 11, as follows

    “A few days ago I watched images of a political rally in Kentucky that showed an unruly crowd knocking a 23-year old activist to the ground and a man stomping on her head with his feet. /The meaning of both events is disturbing and its importance should not be minimized or portrayed as an example of campaign rhetoric or disagreement. Robust disagreement is one thing, aggravated assault and potential threats against the life of an individual is something entirely different.”

    Now, even the Beeb cannot censor me from quoting what it has already published.

    I then provided a link to an article headed ‘Paul supporters who clashed with liberal activist speak out’. Maybe they objected to my providing a link to the article, which is published by a crowd called WKYT, of whom I had never heard before. Therefore, I won’t quote the link again – anyone who wants to read the story just has to Google the headline.

    Then I quoted a few lines from the article – eg that the stomper is being charged with assault, that the stompee is apparently is recovering from injuries including a concussion and a sprained shoulder and arm, and that the stomper thinks the stompee should apologise to HIM.

    Truly, the Beeb’s Mods move in mysterious ways, their wonders to perform...

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  • 66. At 00:36am on 30 Oct 2010, crash wrote:

    #64
    What utter rubbish you talk,upward mobility in England ?A country in which you are considered to be doing well if you live in a thousand square foot house with no yard and hand,when including vat,60% of your income to the government.A country in which you are under constant surveillance of cctv,England exists in name only now.
    A once great nation that has fallen prey to the European socialism that is not as in your face as nazism but much more frightening.

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  • 67. At 02:45am on 30 Oct 2010, TimR1944 wrote:

    #57

    John from Dublin

    This may not be strictly relevant to this topic. However every so often someone posts here telling us that the US is the land of opportunity, where anyone can get ahead, unlike those nasty socialist States like Yerp (Australia, Canada, Japan, etc etc). They never seem to provide any evidence however.
    ----------------------------

    And you go on to whine, moan, complain and insult Americans - yet again.

    Does it ever occur to you that there is something a bit peculiar about someone who carries on about the endless evils of total strangers in another nation?

    All of your comments are simply based on rubbish you find in the media. They are essentially worthless, yet that doesn't stop you from going on and on about those terrible Americans. What conceivable reason can there be for you to hold forth about the evils of people in a nation thousands of miles away?

    The world is a large and interesting place - much too interesting for xenophobia and insults directed against people because of their (our) nationality. You might try looking around and realizing that. Take a break from the shrill and hysterical insults. You will be shocked, but you may have a whole new outlook on life.

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  • 68. At 02:48am on 30 Oct 2010, TimR1944 wrote:

    #63

    Davidmcc23

    Some Americans need to grow up and live in the real world. Their gun laws are almost draconian. Their culture is dreadful at times, this sense of entitelment that they have is unwarranted and far fetched. Greatest country in the world? I'm afraid not. Major culture change required!

    It must be said, it is hard not too feel sorry for O, he was left a terrible mess by G.W.B and is fighting a losing battle with tired American attitudes.

    -------------------

    Ye gods - more rancid posturing and posing and moaning and groaning.

    Considering the quality of your posts you are hardly in a position to be lecturing others. This petty, childish, repellent sniping at people simply because they are from another nation is simply crude and vulgar xenophobia - and this site is filled to the bursting with it.

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  • 69. At 04:37am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    An Indian walks into a cafe with a shotgun in one hand and pulling a male buffalo with the other. He says to the waiter:

    "Want coffee."

    The waiter says, "Sure Chief. Coming right up."

    He gets the Indian a tall mug of coffee.....

    The Indian drinks the coffee down in one gulp, turns and blasts the buffalo with the shotgun, causing parts of the animal to splatter everywhere and then just walks out.

    The next morning the Indian returns.
    He has his shotgun in one hand, pulling
    another male buffalo with the other.
    He walks up to the counter and says to
    the waiter:


    "Want coffee."

    The waiter says, "Whoa, Tonto!
    We're still cleaning up your mess from yesterday. What was all that about, anyway?"

    The Indian smiles and proudly says,

    "Training for position in United States Congress.
    Come in, drink coffee, shoot the bull, leave mess for others to clean up,
    Disappear for rest of day."

    VOTE NOVEMBER 2 !

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  • 70. At 04:42am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    Gratefully Free Marie wrote:
    Now, if it had been a Republican shooting at a windmill...

    Lately, I haven't laughed enough from this forum. So today, thank you ukwales for: “when!! where!!,how come I always miss every thing.” :-)






    Perhaps they were too small for ukwales to notice.


    [BTW. "If I were a miller"...:)]

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  • 71. At 05:40am on 30 Oct 2010, RomeStu wrote:

    69. powermeerkat wrote:
    "An Indian walks into a cafe......"



    Overly liberal of me it may well be, but I believe the current term is "Native American"...... or was the cafe in the Punjab, and the dead animal a water buffalo


    Still, I liked the joke, but I wonder that if these lazy politicians and entrenched interests on the Hill have been dragging the USA down for so long, why did it the "grassroots" protest not spontaneously burst forth until the election of Obama ......


    Enquiring minds want to know ;-)

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  • 72. At 05:45am on 30 Oct 2010, RomeStu wrote:

    40 StDom
    Good comment, and interesting analysis of the democrat mindset. However when you write this...

    "Most people understand that these problems began long before President Obama was elected, but they also know that he was fully aware of what he was getting into when he ran for office, and since he has been unable to perform a miracle and bring us back to happy days are here again it is time to replace him with a new medicine man."

    ..... I realise that it may be true, but it still leaves me incredibly sad that our modern "have it now" instant fix society cannot see beyond the end of its nose, which it is determinedly slicing from its face in spite.

    Global economy cannot be fixed instantly, and changing horses in mid-stream will simply make things worse.

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  • 73. At 05:56am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    Andy wrote:
    23. At 4:40pm on 29 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    "Guns and NRA is fairly commonplace in America. Mark Mardell actually did an article on it a while back, about shopping with guns or something...anyhew, guns are normal in our society, whether its tv/movies/video games or in real life. Here, deer-hunting is a sport, lots of gun clubs and it is much needed because otherwise the deer would overrun the people. Guns are just part of the American culture."

    "You missed out pillage, torture, abuse, obesity, neutrality in the face of genocide, greed, superiority, fundamentalism, belligerence and Coca Cola."




    Had I been a product of a rape of my mother by an American GI I might write such things myself.

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  • 74. At 05:59am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    JMM: "Are you really sure that people in dark suits and dark sunglasses would not have arrived at your door and asked you to go for a ride with them [and no, I don't mean black panthers, I mean Secret Service, and/or FBI, and/or ATF, and/or a SWAT team]?"



    Nope, unless I needed a lift. :)

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  • 75. At 06:02am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 76. At 06:04am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    Re #5w "Xenophobia is, unfortunately, an enjoyable sport for cowards"


    And we do know who those cowards are.

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  • 77. At 06:12am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    "Overly liberal of me it may well be, but I believe the current term is "Native American"



    Nope Stu. That's a PC term coined by PC folks.

    Indian is an inhabitant of India.

    [Colombus (an Italian from Genoa) was lost and had no clue.

    That's why he ended up in Haiti]

    Every American born in the USA is a Native American.


    BTW. Washington football team is called Redskins.

    Do overly liberal folk have any problem with that? :)

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  • 78. At 10:48am on 30 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 67 Timmeh!

    "And you go on to whine, moan, complain and insult Americans - yet again."

    No I don't. I go on to quote from an article – written by Americans. Therefore – you lie and defame.

    “Does it ever occur to you that there is something a bit peculiar about someone who carries on about the endless evils of total strangers in another nation?”

    I daresay there would be, but I am not such a person. Therefore – you lie and defame.

    Does it ever occur to you that there is something a bit peculiar about someone who lies about something that is provable – anyone can read the postings here, and check my previous postings. Therefore – you lie and defame.

    Does it ever occur to you that there is something a bit peculiar about someone who carries on about the endless evils of total strangers in another nation and endlessly, endlessly, endlessly, endlessly, ad infinitum, ad nauseam, whines about how anti-American they are? Clearly not.

    “All of your comments are simply based on rubbish you find in the media.”

    Yet another lie. Some are based on media articles. Some not. Unlike you, I value the concepts of evidence and proof. Moreover, by ‘rubbish’, you clearly mean ‘articles Timmeh does not agree with but cannot disprove’.

    “They are essentially worthless, yet that doesn't stop you from going on and on about those terrible Americans.”

    (a) I don't. (b) Your postings are essentially worthless, yet that doesn’t stop you from going on and on on and on on and on on and on on and on about these terrible anti-American foreigners.

    “What conceivable reason can there be for you to hold forth about the evils of people in a nation thousands of miles away?”

    Ask yourself the same question.

    “The world is a large and interesting place- much too interesting for xenophobia and insults directed against people because of their (our) nationality”

    Ye Gods! I guess it had to happen – Timmeh gets something right. The only problem is I do not direct insults against people because of their nationality, just because of their views and actions, or in your case your endless, monomaniacal, mendacious, defamatory obsession with what you perceive as the world’s anti-Americanism – which in most cases merely constitutes any criticism of any American. (Mind you, you have recently been very vitriolic about the US’s Head of State – I guess that makes you anti-American.)

    “Take a break from the shrill and hysterical insults. You will be shocked, but you may have a whole new outlook on life.”

    Pot, kettle....

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  • 79. At 10:50am on 30 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 75

    As ever, long on smear, short on fact.

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  • 80. At 10:51am on 30 Oct 2010, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 81. At 10:55am on 30 Oct 2010, Oldloadr wrote:

    77. At 06:12am on 30 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:
    "Overly liberal of me it may well be, but I believe the current term is "Native American"
    __________________________________________________________________
    The inhabitants of the reservations don't turn down their monthly entitlement checks from the Gov't because they come from the BIA (Bureau of Indian Affairs); so I guess it doesn’t bother them too much.
    The most important point you made is that all of us that were born within the territory of the United States of America are Native Americans… period (the 14th Amendment says so).

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  • 82. At 10:59am on 30 Oct 2010, BienvenueEnLouisiana wrote:

    “The Inequality Delusion - Americans think the U.S. has far more income equality than it has. They want it to be even fairer. Yet they hate the policies that would make it so.”

    I have heard and read the words above over and over. The American dream is neither a delusion nor a singular dream; it is a timeless American social construct that inspires.

    Many people are perplexed that most Americans generally want more income equality, yet hate the supposed policies that would make it so. It is understandable for people to be perplexed by such contrasting attitudes because such people do not accept the same socio-economic and political premise that most Americans currently do. America is a society that adheres to republican egalitarian ideals, as does modern France; this has led Americans to want income equality. Traditional republican ideals also protect individual wealth and property; in America, this also means that government should not be in the business of redistributing individual wealth in an effort to artificially create economic equality. Thus, in America you find the concept of equal opportunity.

    In other words, the majority of Americans still aspire to make a bigger pie and take a bigger slice; a minority of Americans and most Europeans can no longer conceive of a bigger pie, so they demand an equal share and are perplexed when most Americans don't do the same.

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  • 83. At 12:38pm on 30 Oct 2010, Chryses wrote:

    RomeStu, (#71. At 05:40am on 30 Oct 2010)

    “... Overly liberal of me it may well be, but I believe the current term is "Native American"...... “

    Not overly liberal - Politicaly Correct (PC).

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  • 84. At 3:52pm on 30 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    pmk wrote: BTW. Washington football team is called Redskins.

    Do overly liberal folk have any problem with that? :)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Yes, actually some of them do.

    Just a year ago, Redskins were sued for their name; fortentely, they got to keep their name because the judge basically ruled that it was too late to make changes, as the Redskins would lose billions upon billions of dollars in advertising, merchandise, stadium, uniforms, historical purposes, etc. Also, the name is considered a copyright.

    From wikipedia(According to Forbes Magazine, the Redskins are the second most valuable franchise in the NFL, behind the Dallas Cowboys, and were valued at approximately $1.55 billion as of 2009.[4] Being the second most valuable franchise, the Redskins remain the highest grossing team in the NFL with $345 million in revenue during the 2009 season.[4] They have also broken the NFL's mark for single-season attendance eight years in a row.)
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Also, interesting, you know the Florida Seminoles...

    (from wikipedia) The Seminole Tribe of Florida officially sanctions the use of the Seminole as Florida State University’s nickname and of Chief Osceola as FSU's mascot. Max Osceola, the chief and general council president of the Seminole Tribe of Florida, has stated that he regards it as an “honor” to be associated with the university.

    In July 2005, the Seminole Nation General Council, the legislative body for the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, voted 18-2 to not oppose the use of Native American names and mascots by college sports teams.

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  • 85. At 7:17pm on 30 Oct 2010, BluesBerry wrote:

    A different, but long-expected campaign in West Virginia.
    Constitution Party Candidate Jeff Becker is calling for a NEW Senate Investigation of 9/11.
    Jeff Becker, running for Senate in West Virginia, raised questions about the “foreknowledge” of WTC Building 7′s collapse on September 11th; he did this during a live televised debate that was carried nationally on C-SPAN.
    If you go to Becker’s campaign website, it shows very proudly at the very top of his homepage that he “calls for NEW Senate investigation of 9/11.”
    During the October 18 debate for the special election to replace the deceased Sen. Robert Byrd, Jeff Becker responded to a question about the “continued build-up of troops in Afghanistan”. His answer was unexpected, but presented without waver: “We need to first take a look at what happened on 9/11. There were actually three buildings that collapsed on September 11th.”
    Becker, who noted himself as an engineer, went on to give an explanation concerning the IMPOSSIBILITY of WTC 7′s collapse, as well as the contradiction between the laws of physics and the government’s so-called official account of what happened.
    Among points presented Becker said:
    “Building 7 was two blocks away from the twin towers, and that’s important to consider because it was not rained on by any debris. It was just a 40-story building. And at 5 pm on 9/11, Jane Standley, reporter from the BBC was standing right in front, at Ground Zero, and reported that Building 7 had collapsed; in fact you could see the building over her shoulder. And then, 20 minutes later, the building did collapse. This is foreknowledge, and it needs to be investigated.”
    Also Larry Silverstein, the owner of World Trade Center 7 Complex, before 9/11 had taken out a multi-billion dollar insurance policy to protect his property against a terrorist attack. Holy cow, what a coincidence!
    In 2002, on a PBS station interview, he said that he gave the order to “pull-it.” Pull-it is a controlled demolition term. More evidence of foreknowledge. You can watch the interview, you can look at the BBC footage.
    How did the British know 20 minutes ahead of time that this was going to happen?
    This needs to be investigated, there is a preponderance of anomalies surrounding the events on 9/11.
    Jeff Becker has been taunted and rebuffed by the establishment.
    Becker has also been a severe critic of the Federal Reserve, publicly supporting a full audit to answer questions like: Where did the bail-out money go?
    Becker: “As your next U.S. Senator, I will fight for passage of Senate Bill S604, the Federal Reserve Sunshine Act, which will require a full audit of the Fed for the first time in its history. I advocate a return to hard money and an end to banker bailouts.”
    Typically, Becker is not even mentioned in this CNN poll; he had to fight to get on the ballot. In West Virginia– where the other Senator is Jay Rockefeller – the Federal Reserve AND WHAT REALLY HAPPENED on 9/11 would be a welcome change indeed.
    Where are the politicians asking:
    Where did the bail-out money go? Show me the money!
    What really happened on 9/11?

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  • 86. At 9:27pm on 30 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    85 How did the British know 20 minutes ahead of time that this was going to happen?
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Some of the British are psychic...there's your answer...

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  • 87. At 10:50am on 31 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    The mighties neutron star, classified as PSR J1614-2230, which revolves 317 times a second, has been recently discovered using using the Green Bank Telescope in West Virginia.

    So it seems it's not only coal mines. :)

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  • 88. At 10:57am on 31 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:

    "How did the British know 20 minutes ahead of time that this was going to happen?"



    How did so many British manage to correctly predict years ago euro crisis and that European Community would become an opressive superstate? :)

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  • 89. At 4:29pm on 31 Oct 2010, LucyJ wrote:

    pmk wrote: How did so many British manage to correctly predict years ago euro crisis and that European Community would become an opressive superstate? :)
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Again...they must be psychic...

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  • 90. At 6:02pm on 31 Oct 2010, qmrfc67 wrote:

    I heard there was a protest rally the other day in Buffalo by a couple of thousand guys named Bill.

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  • 91. At 01:36am on 02 Nov 2010, henrahi wrote:

    the funny thing is half of you here are commenting for the sake of commenting as if you each know EXACTLY how the US is behaving in whichever way you find inappropriate or otherwise. so i will not deviate from said trend. however im talking about the campaign and not politically in/correct coined terms.
    firstly, doesn't anyone else think it's odd that the two most talked about events in this election cycle were hosted by tv personalities rather than people with say, actual credentials?
    and secondly, if you are smart enough to put one foot in front of the other to the voting station, you are probably smart enough to vote in a way that will not stalemate the country for the next 2 years, as some sort of FU to Obama. Obama doesn't know who you are, and I'd still vote for Bo the White House Dog over these fancy-pants tea-toting let's keep our guns so we can shoot the immigrants Republicans. And no one could change my mind otherwise just like any other barely educated soul. Except a sizeable percentage of the population of the US will not understand anything iv just written. At least some of you here know how to work a computer.....comment for the sake of commenting.

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