Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Racial references to President Obama, from "both sides"

From Doug Lamborn Apologizes To Obama For 'Tar Baby' Comments Huffington Post 08/02/2011:

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Co.) has apologized for the controversial "tar baby" comment he made on a local radio show last week while discussing President Barack Obama and the debt ceiling debate.

On the 630 KHOW Capils and Silverman radio show, Lamborn said:

"Even if some people say, 'Well the Republicans should have done this or they should have done that,' they will hold the President responsible. Now, I don’t even want to have to be associated with him. It's like touching a tar baby and you get it, you're stuck, and you're a part of the problem now and you can’t get away."
From Matt Taibbi, Obama Doesn't Want a Progressive Deficit Deal Rolling Stone 07/11/2011:

Obama's new plan, for instance, might involve slashing Medicare and Social Security under "pressure" from the Republicans.

I simply don't believe the Democrats would really be worse off with voters if they committed themselves to putting people back to work, policing Wall Street, throwing their weight behind a real public option in health care, making hedge fund managers pay the same tax rates as ordinary people, ending the pointless wars abroad, etc. That they won't do these things because they're afraid of public criticism, and "responding to pressure," is an increasingly transparent lie. This "Please, Br'er Fox, don't throw me into dat dere briar patch" deal isn't going to work for much longer. Just about everybody knows now that they want to go into that briar patch. [my emphasis in bold]
Both the Tar Baby and briar patch references are both from the Uncle Remus stories of Joel Chandler Harris, whose purpose was to revise the image of antebellum Southern race relations in the eyes of his readers, to present them as benign in order to enforce the white supremacist sentiments of postwar Southern white conservatives.


From Matt Taibbi, Debt Ceiling Deal: The Democrats Take a Dive Rolling Stone 07/11/2011:
Back in 2008, the congress and George Bush rewarded Hank Paulson and Wall Street for pulling the Cleavon-Little-"the-next-man-makes-a-move-the-n---er-gets-it" routine by tossing trillions of bailout dollars at the same people who had wrecked the economy.
This is the context of explaining that Obama was happy for the Republican Tea Party to pull the same thing this time.

Matt Taibbi is a good political analyst, although his free use of insults and vulgarity as always bugged me a bit; he seems to be trying to achieve the cyncial and irreverent tone of Hunter Thompson's journalistic style. But these racial references make me wonder if he's preparting to repositioning himself from a left-leaning cynic to one more pleasing to Republican Tea Party sensibilities. At the least, I wish he would clean up his act in regard to the dubious racial references.

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