Monday, April 14, 2008

Small Town America Is Seeing Clearly

Referring to small-town Americans who are suffering economically, Barack Obama recently made the much-ballyhooed comment, "It's not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."

Howard Kurtz has defended this statement by saying that Obama's analysis is essentially correct: "The senator was trying to say that these folks voted on social issues, distracting wedge issues, when their real problem was economic."

But Kurtz misses the point. Americans who are hurting ecocnomically - blue collar workers, people in small towns and high-unemployment areas - are voting for Hillary. This demographic has been identified in every primary. They aren't distracted by wedge issues. They are choosing Hillary over Obama because they need a president who has experience, who will be a good manager, who will make America work again. They aren't falling for empty rhetoric about change. They know how important this election will be to their livelihood.

Obama's base is very different from Hillary's base; he is supported by people who are younger, richer, more active in the party and more educated. They are all less economically vulnerable.

The thing is, at this point in history we should all feel vulnerable. We are in the middle of a world financial crisis and a world environmental crisis. The US is in the middle of an illegal war. The world financial system needs to be overhauled. Domestically, the US faces a morass of challenges, from a gutted and ineffectual FEMA that leaves the country vulnerable to catastrophe to a need for overhaul of the Federal Reserve Board. And on and on.

Now is a time for pragmatism. Small town America has it right.



Anonymous said...

White people are bitter and frustrated. Better-qualified white students, employees, etc. face intense racial discrimination. Obama and his liberal comrades call it “Affirmative Action”.
Millions of white Americans see “people who aren’t like them” illegals and inner-city parasites sucking up on free benefits.
Millions of tax paying white Americans can no longer use the public school system because “people who aren’t like them” have made the schools awash with violence, drugs, and gangster rap.

Scott Tribe said...

...except that most of the local newspaper in PA over the weekend dismissed Hillary's claims that Obama was elitist and/or instead endorsed Obama.

They don't buy her line of attack.

BY the way, its pretty sad to see a Democratic presidential contender parrot Republican talking points.

Yappa said...

White Americans face "intense racial discrimination"???

I do not see one bit of evidence that small town or blue collar Americans are supporting Hillary over Obama because they think the two candidates have different policies on affirmative action or desegregation. The two candidates have the same policies and everone knows it.

There is lots of evidence from exit polls, interviews, etc that those people are supporting Hillary because their number one priority is the economy, and they think she's more qualified to manage it.

Northern PoV said...

anon 6:35
your ilk are beyond belief

you illustrate the very worst example of what Obama is saying

lots of folks that will vote for McCain in Nov (regardless of who the Dems nominate) and many that are voting for Hillary now - are just like your lovely 1st commentator

Too bad Bill and Hillary have both instigated and leveraged this type of voter in their quest for power

Greg said...

Yappa, I think you are missing the point to an extent. Obama is pointing out that these folks are trending Republican, even though it is not in their economic interest to do so.