51
   

The 2008 Democrat Convention

 
 
Diest TKO
 
  4  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 03:30 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Dont' get me wrong Finn, the Palin announcement was perfectly timed. Strategically, it was a flawless move in terms of press. What I'm talking about was that the republicans were unable to really address the messages the dems put forth on a daily basis. They get the attention they wanted until the convention was over. Everyone knew going in that McCain would announce his pick on his birthday right after the DNC, no surprise there.

Palin is such an interesting pick. I think it does a number of things.

1) Being from Alaska, she can speak out about drilling and how she'd never let anything happen to the state she loves. She's and outdoorsman... outdoorswoman...person... This allows McCain to focus more on offshore drilling in his campaign.
2) In a political climate which has let the social moral issue take a back seat to economics and foreign policy, she can coral social conservatives and evangelicals on the abortion issue. Being a woman also gives her a edge in the discussion revolving around this.
3) Of course there is the very obvious vie for disaffected Hillary supporters. She speech specifically tried to sap the spirit of Hillary's from only two days earlier.
4) It excited the entire process again. Now no matter the outcome, history is made. The American public be it left or right is a part of something big. That special feeling means that we will most likely pay more (than normal) attention to new developments. This can add potency to his ad campaign.
5) She has a son going to Iraq (so does McCain and Biden). This can appeal to moderates that question how republicans would use our military.
6) Union ties. Obviously a demographic that was most shocking. This may act as a laxative for those union members to vote based on other topics like abortion.
7) Dealing with harsh medical realities. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe one of her children suffers from some sort of condition that isn't treatable. This will both leverage sympathy and sell her as being medical industry conscious.

Like I said. She will help McCain. Here's the kicker though, McCain has not been telling the US to vote for him. He has been telling us to NOT vote for Obama. His major leverage in this stance was experience, and debate it all you like, that argument lost it's ground. Even if it didn't, McCain isn't going to want the national dialogue shifting attention on to her for this reason. I'll predict that he'll move away from this idea.

McCain will still have to tell us what his plan is. In all the attacks he's put forth, many Americans aren't aware of his ideas. Promoting fear of Obama's readiness olny goes so far when Obama is making a clear effort to outline specific details about his plans. The public will begin to just assume (fairly or unfairly) that McCain's policies are in fact just the same as the ones of GWB.

The DNC went very well and the dems did a great job preempting the GOP. The RNC will kick off, and all the dems will have to do is sit back, find a media source, and end every day with "we told you so."

That is a hard thing for the republicans to deal with considering the current administration. The GOP can not win by being the 3rd bush term. They'll need to separate themselves somehow. I think McCain's VP pick was the first attempt to do that, at the sacrifice of their best weapon against Obama. It will position them as being a little more progressive. A risky choice. I'm not sure how it will play out. She has charisma, but let's wait and see how she handles the national stage and the pressure to defend her stances. If she is unprepared, McCain may have the problem that he has no made Obama the safe ticket, a piece of ground that could ultimately decide the race.

I've heard the notion that McCain may have been desperate or reactionary to the DNC with his pick, but looking retroactively at some of the things he did and said before, I'm betting this pick was made before the DNC started.

As for...

Memes - Deal with it. The republicans campaign very successfully using short soundbyte attacks. It's a great way for press. If Obama gives a thoughtful 3 minute comment on a given topic, it may mean more, but McCain's 10 second comment can be played more in a given day on TV/Radio. It says what they want it to say and has less to fire back on. It builds the desired brand they desire, and the less McCain speaks, the less chance he can say something stupid.

I never said that this is unique to the GOP. The biggest meme from the left is obviously the "Bush 3rd term" meme.

Memes aren't bad, but McCain needs to use more than just memes. He needs to be careful which ones he chooses to use too. It's labeling him as petty and simple. McCain promised a clean campaign so it's going to be thrown back in his face in terms of the credibility of what he says to the public; his trustworthiness.

McCain needs to figure out his own campaign and lay out what he's about, and what he wants. McCain has been sitting on the sideline while Obama has been able to control the national narrative. McCain won't be able to knock Obama out of that role, but he'd better learn to get some stage time.

Partisanship - Don't make me laugh. You have no perspective on what I thought before, anticipated, or wanted from the convention. Bite your tongue. I did expect the dems to cheer the dems but my analysis stems more from the reaction I got from my coworkers and many people outside of mile-high stadium.

I had low expectations. I was unsure about Michelle Obama's ability to deliver likableness. I was skeptical about Hillary and Bill's desire to help Obama. I expected John Kerry 04, and didn't anticipate anything with energy or character. I was unsure about Biden's ability to jump in smoothly. More than anything else, I was unsure if Obama would be able to start speaking more firmly and quantify his ideas.

I was very nervous and met with great surprise. Glass houses Finn, Glass houses.

As for what line of Obama's speech will be remembered. I think you fail to grasp what happened in that speech. Obama showed he could deliver something different. He's proven his grounds on the speaking-from-philosophy to the masses. He's great at communicating vision in a way that a Americans can relate. What he illustrated on Thursday is that he could talk shop and still captivate the audience. I expect more like this. It wasn't about delivering a new "yes, we can" New Hampshire speech. He has forged his message, he has forged his brands: Hope and Change. For this event he needed something different. I hope you recognize how this benefits him. People leave feeling like he can deliver.

Ponder this for a second Finn. After months of McCain and his supoprters not only attacking Obama, but additionally attacking his supporters (see meme "Obamaniacs") how is it that McCain thinks he can steal them away?

In total honesty here is my two week prediction.

In state by state polling, light red states will get darker. Blue states will remain mostly the same. In purple states, margins will more clearly develop.

In popularity polling, McCain will close the Gap after the RNC and perhaps even catch a healthy bump and poll ahead by 2 to 3 points.

From this point the RNC will have concluded, and the democrats as I have mentioned before will have an obvious job to illustrate exactly how the GOP has an outdated mindset, and the RNC speeches will give them all the ammunition they need. Over the second week, be ready to see the first really noticeable offensive from the dems headed by Biden and I'd wager Kerry too.

Add to this nature. Literally speaking, nature. Hurricane Gustov (Gustoff?) may reach New Orleans. The RNC will have something to talk about potentially, but what should scare them is thoughts about the USA's confidence in FEMA. This one could go either way, I'm not going to try and predict the weather.

At the end of two weeks, I predict things to be pretty even with republicans having to navigate a significantly more critical trail. Democrats will be able to talk more openly about the things that the GOP has to move more delicately through.


oh and one other thing...

T
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sozobe
 
  3  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 08:30 am
@Diest TKO,
Again I really liked your post, I just have to take issue with this:

Diest TKO wrote:
What he illustrated on Thursday is that he could talk shop and still captivate the audience. I expect more like this.


He's been doing it from the beginning, honest. It's not what's covered, it's not what's replayed, it's not the soundbites. But it's what he's done, over and over and over again.

It's what I meant about standard stump speech -- I've seen him twice in person (third time coming up today!) and I've read umpteen speeches. This is what he does.

This was part of why I was underwhelmed. I've seen it so often before. But from reactions, I'm more and more convinced that it was exactly what he needed to do. To make a speech very much like the speeches he's been making as he has criss-crossed the country for the past year and a half -- but this time in front of his largest unfiltered audience ever.
firefly
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 08:50 am
@Diest TKO,
Palin is an interesting pick, but don't count on her to protect Alaska's natural resources, or wildlife.

Quote:
Palin, who was chosen Friday as presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain's running mate, favored increased oil and gas drilling in sensitive lands and waterways, opposed federal action to list the polar bear as a species threatened with extinction and supports a controversial program to allow aerial shooting of wolves and bears as a means of predator control.

Alaskan natural resources have long served as a larder for the Lower 48. The state's vast gold deposits sparked a 19th century rush akin to California's, and when the trans-Alaska pipeline was completed in 1977 it supplied 20% of the country's oil. Alaskan waters today support a powerhouse fishing industry.

In her two years in office, Palin has given every indication that she intends to continue stocking the larder. She favors the construction of one of the world's largest mining complexes at the headwaters of Bristol Bay, home to the world's largest sockeye salmon fishery. Palin opposes greater protections for beluga whales found in the Cook Inlet, where oil and gas drilling and other development is proposed. And unlike her running mate, Palin favors drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a recurring issue of debate during the Bush administration.

"She's continued the extractive political ideology that has defined Alaska for decades," said Rick Steiner, a University of Alaska marine biologist.


And I don't know that she's spoken out, or has views about, national health care or health insurance. Her child has Down's Syndrome, which is not a treatable medical condition, and it would not necessarily require more medical care than other children. She would not seem more medically conscious than anyone else, and she is not likely to use this 5 month infant to "gain sympathy", since that would be belittling to her child, and at odds with her anti-abortion stance.

She may have a son going to Iraq, but she has admitted she is not familiar with foreign policy issues, or military issues. And, allegedly, this is McCain's strongest area, so she's no big benefit on these issues.

She may have belonged to a union, but union members will go for the candidate, and the party, that best offers to protect their interests--she is not likely to be a big influence with this group.

She is so far from Hillary on the social issues, including abortion, she is unlikely to pick up many of Hillary's former supporters. Hillary is a Democratic, who supports that party's positions. Her supporters will not turn around and vote for McCain just because he has a woman on the ticket. Women, like most people, vote on the issues, not just on the gender of the candidate. However, she might excite more Republican women, who agree with her views, to actually get out and vote. Those Republicans who do not think a woman, or this particular woman, could function as Commander-in-Chief, if thrust into that position, may be turned off by Palin, and just not vote at all.

Where Palin will help McCain is with the evangelical Christian right--and that's really why she's on the ticket.

Right now, Palin is generating buzz and excitement, and that brings attention to McCain. But, on balance, she is a very poor choice as a running mate. Her lack of appropriate experience is actually appalling, and it does not reflect well on McCain's ability to make appointments or to use good judgment in appraising the total picture before acting. He didn't even really know this woman before he selected her. Palin's social-religious positions may also turn off more moderate or liberal Republicans and move them toward Obama. The controversy about Palin's qualifications, and her possible abuses of her power as governor, may come to overshadow any benefit she might add to the ticket.

The Democrats should be happy with Palin because she represents no real threat to their base, and she may well prove to be a great liability to McCain.

The DNC was viewed by a record number of people. The RNC will not really offer any of the excitement that permeated the DNC, and the DNC will be a tough act to follow. I'm not sure that anyone, beyond the party faithful, will really tune in to watch very much--other than maybe to hear the two main acceptance speeches. Many independents and undecided voters may just continue to sit on the sidelines and watch how the campaign unfolds after the RNC.

It is a very fascinating election year.

Butrflynet
 
  3  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 08:57 am
@sozobe,
sozobe wrote:

Again I really liked your post, I just have to take issue with this:

Diest TKO wrote:
What he illustrated on Thursday is that he could talk shop and still captivate the audience. I expect more like this.


He's been doing it from the beginning, honest. It's not what's covered, it's not what's replayed, it's not the soundbites. But it's what he's done, over and over and over again.

It's what I meant about standard stump speech -- I've seen him twice in person (third time coming up today!) and I've read umpteen speeches. This is what he does.

This was part of why I was underwhelmed. I've seen it so often before. But from reactions, I'm more and more convinced that it was exactly what he needed to do. To make a speech very much like the speeches he's been making as he has criss-crossed the country for the past year and a half -- but this time in front of his largest unfiltered audience ever.


Underwhelmed... What a relief. I was starting to think I was the only one that felt that way. To me, his speech had no new content and was nothing more than what I've already heard him say in his books and in hundreds of speeches for the past 18 months. Apparently, the only thing new was that people finally took a moment to listen to what the man had to say and that he took the time to pack it all into one speech rather than piecemill in a series of them.

Here's a couple of videos that also go into a lot of detail and I think are overwhelming reasons why he's still my number one candidate:


Diest TKO
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 09:59 am
@sozobe,
sozobe wrote:

Again I really liked your post, I just have to take issue with this:

Diest TKO wrote:
What he illustrated on Thursday is that he could talk shop and still captivate the audience. I expect more like this.


He's been doing it from the beginning, honest. It's not what's covered, it's not what's replayed, it's not the soundbites. But it's what he's done, over and over and over again.

It's what I meant about standard stump speech -- I've seen him twice in person (third time coming up today!) and I've read umpteen speeches. This is what he does.

This was part of why I was underwhelmed. I've seen it so often before. But from reactions, I'm more and more convinced that it was exactly what he needed to do. To make a speech very much like the speeches he's been making as he has criss-crossed the country for the past year and a half -- but this time in front of his largest unfiltered audience ever.


Soz, let me be clear. I get you 100%. I'm measuring the speech on other's response. You and I may already have locked into his message and may understand his ideas and plans, but not everyone does. That's why I'm saying he talked shop.

The media has certainly circulated many of the powerful "vision" moments that Obama has had, but they've done no favors in terms or broadcasting him speaking in details. So when Obama used a more stern voice and talked about where the money would come from, he punctuated what many unsure voters wanted to know about him.

One of my co-workers was talking about his wife's feelings on Obama. She liked him, was moved by his speeches, liked his vision, but ultimately just wanted to know what his plan was and how he planned to achieve it. He characterized her feelings as be more comfortable with a candidate she didn't like but could understand (McCain) over one she liked but didn't understand (Obama). On Friday when he came into work, he told me how now she's fired up on Obama. The speech did well with the Eastern Appalachia mentality he wagered.

So in essence, maybe I was underwhelmed some too. That is a short lived feeling for me, because I think he spoke to a wider audience with this speech, even though his best speech (and maybe someday legendary) was his New Hampshire "Yes we can" speech.

One thing I forgot to mention, I went to youtube and rewatched Obama's 2004 speech at the DNC. It is very impressive how true Obama is to Obama. So when Michelle Obama said he is the same man from when she met him, I believe it. I don't think he can solve every problem we have in our country, but things like this make me feel like it's truly his desire to more than just get elected. I felt like he wants to solve problems. Too often candidates talk about short term goals, things that can be only measureable in terms of their candidacy. Obama came out and didn't just say he wanted to find energy alternatives for the future. He said in the next 10 years. He wants to start something bigger than himself. This is all evidence to me that he is more than serious about getting things done.

T
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Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 09:59 am
@firefly,
I didn't say Palin would protect Alaska, but I'm saying that she can make a convincing argument that she will.

T
K
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0 Replies
 
Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 10:02 am
@Butrflynet,
Holy crap we can embed flash vids now!?

T
K
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0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 10:25 am
@Diest TKO,
Gotcha.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 10:27 am
@sozobe,
Hey Butrflynet, follow the wormhole (the post I'm replying to) to see my immediate response to the speech...
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 01:11 pm
@Butrflynet,
Thanks for making me watch that first video again. I'd seen it under the headline "Is this the typical Obama supporter?" and started watching it to see the questioning clearly attempt to portray the Obama supporter as not knowing anything about policy and supporting Obama out of "emotional specifics" reasons and turned it off. But the guy more than holds his own and that's nice to see from the street.
0 Replies
 
nicole415
 
  0  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 02:57 pm
@sozobe,
Quote:
Honest question:

Obama and McCain have each been running their campaigns for about as long as Palin has been governor of Alaska. I wonder what the logistics are? Simply in terms of executive experience -- which is the larger operation?

(I could probably find out with some searching, here for just a second though.)


Depends on whether you value managing people or managing moose.
Ramafuchs
 
  0  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 05:21 pm
@nicole415,
You cannot export a product( democracy with your WMD) without tasting it at home.
In USA there is bigmc, or coke light.( Rep versus Dems)
The rotten system which allow only two corporate dancers with all kind of shiboleth English should be changed.
A multi- party system is better.
I bet one Euro for this.Any of you make some clarification so tthat Iam ABLE TO KNOW?
USA's two party had never set a record( world record) when you think of the eligible voter's final choice.
Fact hurts .
firefly
 
  2  
Reply Sun 31 Aug, 2008 09:37 am
@Ramafuchs,
Ramafuchs, the U.S. has considerably more than two political parties.

In any given election I vote in, there are always a long list of candidates, running for the same offices, listed on the ballot under the Democratic and Republican candidates. This is particularly true in presidential elections. There can be an infinite number of political parties as long as they garner enough signatures to be placed on the ballot.

In recent elections, third party candidates, like Ross Perot and Ralph Nader, have made significant impacts.

Voters are not, therefore, limited in their choice of candidates. They can always bypass the two main candidates and find someone else on the ballot to vote for.
spendius
 
  2  
Reply Sun 31 Aug, 2008 01:48 pm
@firefly,
I read that Ralph Nader won the election for Mr Bush by splitting the lefties just enough. Is that correct?
firefly
 
  2  
Reply Sun 31 Aug, 2008 02:23 pm
@spendius,
He didn't really split the vote, spendi, but, because it was a very close election, he did take some crucial votes away from Gore.

The analysis of the situation is mixed:

Quote:
In the 2000 presidential election in Florida, George W. Bush defeated Al Gore by 537 votes. Nader received 97,421 votes. In fact, all seven of the other third-party candidates on the ballot in Florida each received more than 537 votes.

The claim is that this was Nader's "greatest impact" on the election. Nader himself, both in his book Crashing the Party, and on his website, states: "In the year 2000, exit polls reported that 25% of my voters would have voted for Bush, 38% would have voted for Gore and the rest would not have voted at all." When asked about claims of being a spoiler, Nader typically points to the controversial Supreme Court ruling that halted a Florida recount, Gore's loss in his home state of Tennessee, and the "quarter million Democrats who voted for Bush in Florida." A study in 2002 by the Progressive Review found no correlation between votes for Nader and votes for Gore (i.e. larger votes for Nader did not correlate to less votes for Gore and vice versa). An analysis conducted by Harvard Professor B.C Burden in 2005 showed Nader did affect Gore's chances, but that:

"Contrary to Democrats’ complaints, Nader was not intentionally trying to throw the election. A spoiler strategy would have caused him to focus disproportionately on the most competitive states and markets with the hopes of being a keyplayer in the outcome. There is no evidence that his appearances responded to closeness. He did, apparently, pursue voter support, however, in a quest to receive 5% of the popular vote."

spendius
 
  1  
Reply Sun 31 Aug, 2008 03:03 pm
@firefly,
ff-

I did say "just enough". I knew it was a marginal thing.

As your quote is just about after-the-event studies, and speculative, I prefer to go on the facts as I see them. No.1 the 537 votes and No.2 that I can't see many Nadar supporters voting Rep. I understood he was a sworn enemy of everything Republicans stand for. In the economic field I mean.

I would have thought that of Nadar's 97,421 votes all would have gone to Gore except those not voting. 50% say.

Nothing else mattered. The other states were declared. We were where we were at the Florida count. The see-saw waited balanced.
spendius
 
  1  
Reply Sun 31 Aug, 2008 03:10 pm
@spendius,
I watched it all on telly. I had money on Mr Gore.

Great theatre. Art can't imitate life. Andy Warhol never even tried.

Wasn't there a bit of a dust-up in another state. I vaguely remember having my hopes raised for a short while. I had lost hope with Florida. As soon as I saw the first hanging chad I knew my fate.
0 Replies
 
spendius
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Sep, 2008 08:25 am
Enter "sunday times AA Gill Obama Army" in Google search and enjoy a top notch report on the convention.

It's not for faint-hearts or the humourless though.
0 Replies
 
nooks
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 09:04 am
@Lash,
I felt that the speech was compelling --- truly moved me.
0 Replies
 
H2O MAN
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Sep, 2008 09:17 am
Real change: McCain and Palin ain't nothing like Bush and Cheney Cool
 

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