April 12, 2008

THE TROUBLE WITH BEING A NEOPHYTE...:

Under fire, Obama clarifies small-town remarks (John Whitesides, 4/12/08, Reuters)

Obama said he did not use the right language to describe the anger and frustration small-town residents feel about the struggling economy and the failure of government to help them.

"I said something that everybody knows is true, which is that there are a whole bunch of folks in small towns in Pennsylvania, in towns right here in Indiana, in my hometown in Illinois, who are bitter," Obama said in Muncie, Indiana. [...]

In an interview with the Winston-Salem Journal, Obama said, "If I worded things in a way that made people offended, I deeply regret that."


Obama, on Defensive, Says His Remarks on Voters Weren’t Artful (KATHARINE Q. SEELYE and JEFF ZELENY, 4/13/08, NY Times)
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton activated her entire campaign apparatus to portray Mr. Obama’s remarks as reflective of an elitist view of faith and community. Mrs. Clinton suggested that Mr. Obama saw religious commitment, hunting and concern about immigration as emotional responses to economic strain rather than as deeply embedded values that transcend the moment.

“I grew up in a church-going family, a family that believed in the importance of living out and expressing our faith,” she said at a rally in Indianapolis. “The people of faith I know don’t ‘cling to’ religion because they’re bitter. People embrace faith not because they are materially poor, but because they are spiritually rich.”

Later in the day, in Valparaiso, Ind., she recalled how her father taught her how to shoot when she was a young girl. She also said that her faith “is the faith of my parents and my grandparents.”

Mrs. Clinton said Mr. Obama’s comments were “not reflective of the values and beliefs of Americans,” adding that “Americans who believe in the Second Amendment believe it’s a constitutional right; Americans who believe in God believe it’s a matter of personal faith.”


God, guns and Obama (Salena Zito April 12, 2008, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)
University of Virginia political science professor Larry Sabato says that Obama does not quite grasp that he is "tabula rasa" -- a blank slate, and unknown to most people beyond his name and candidacy. "This is a contest to see who gets to write on the slate first. Obama is handing some chalk to Clinton and McCain, and it's foolish."

Is not just that folks know you so little that such statements frame their view of you, but that you don't have the experience to realize that when you say something that stupid you can't pretend you were right. He's just digging himself deeper.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 12, 2008 8:37 PM
Comments

"the anger and frustration small-town residents feel about the struggling economy and the failure of government to help them"

Ah, ok, got it. Religion is a false comfort to which bitter people cling to cling when the government fails.

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at April 13, 2008 1:22 AM

"Mrs. Clinton said Mr. Obama’s comments were “not reflective of the values and beliefs of Americans,”"

No, but they're pretty reflective of Hillary's historical It-Takes-A-Village thinking. She's just better at keeping her eye on the ball, apparently.

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at April 13, 2008 1:25 AM

'Twould seem that after 20 years of not listening to Reverend Wright, Obama is actually surprised people are listening to him (i.e., Obama)....

Posted by: Barry Meislin at April 13, 2008 1:27 AM

Obama's problem is that he thinks he is right, and free to say such things among his best friends.

I would like to know if Obama thinks Jeremiah Wright is bitter, after all his hard years of pastoring a mega-church in inner-city Chicago.

Posted by: jim hamlen at April 13, 2008 9:36 AM

Mrs. Clinton said Mr. Obama’s comments were “not reflective of the values and beliefs of Americans,” adding that “Americans who believe in the Second Amendment believe it’s a constitutional right;

WHO BELIEVE in the 2nd Amendment????

Posted by: Sandy P at April 13, 2008 11:18 AM
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