Patterico's Pontifications

9/4/2008

Have You Heard the One About the Community Organizer?

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 10:30 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

Marc Ambinder wrote this about Sarah Palin’s “community organizer” jokes last night:

The four mocking mentions last night of Barack Obama’s service as a “community organizer” have ignited a metapshereic debate about whether the term has racial connotations.

The McCain campaign says no: they insist that no one knows what a community organizer is, and whatever they think it is, it doesn’t compare to being a mayor. They say that because Obama cites his organizing work as a key point on his resume, it’s fair for them to tickle it. Their point is: he’s a governing dilettante.

Indeed, the Obama campaign knows that many Americans don’t know what a community organizer does, and they’ve changed the way they refers to Obama’s experience too. When he talks about community organizing now, he references his organizing work for churches. That embeds the work in a more familiar context. Inner city Catholics know what community organizers do, certainly.

But community organizers tend to work with poorer folks, and there’s some chatter among Democrats that it’s a subtle way to highlight Obama’s urbanity. Some Obama aides see it as a knock against the poor and their material needs.

I think it’s a cultural trope, like when Rudy Giuliani (lacking, I might add, any sense of irony or awareness of his own life), referred last night to Obama’s “cosmopolitan” background. It stirs up resentments. It makes elite Republicans feel comfortable with themselves. The audience repeatedly laughed; they got the joke. The question is: what was the joke?

I thought I got the joke — that liberals think “organizing” a community is the same as “governing” a community.

If these Obama supporters are right that Palin was making a racist, urban, we-hate-the-poor point, those jokes went way over my head.

So does that make me an elitist or trailer trash?

— DRJ

122 Responses to “Have You Heard the One About the Community Organizer?”

  1. If our economy can provide a man a living by being a community organizer, we must be rolling in dough.

    PDizzle (cb6b9b)

  2. a cultural trope, like when Rudy Giuliani (lacking, I might add, any sense of irony or awareness of his own life), referred last night to Obama’s “cosmopolitan” background.

    Lack of awareness?

    Wow. Just wow. In a singularly lacking observation, Ambinder has shown just how culturally ignorant he is.

    Dumbfounded. I am.

    EW1(SG) (f7706b)

  3. And no, I am not going to explain Rudy’s joke for him, even though it was priceless.

    EW1(SG) (f7706b)

  4. The point is that “community organizer” is pretty much always a euphemism for “left-wing agitator.” It is not about the needs of the people; it is about the agenda of the so-called organizers.

    Mahon (f5044a)

  5. So does that make me an elitist or trailer trash?
    – DRJ

    Depends… what’s your position on arugula? 😉

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  6. a metapshereic debate about whether the term has racial connotations.

    Translation:
    We’re getting our asses kicked – can we play the race card?

    Palin was answering criticisms regarding her capability that were based on her being a ‘small town mayor’. Criticisms that they leveled first. She successfully countered their arguments by pointing out the difference in responsibility, as well as their ignorance of that difference. They got crushed, and they want to mischaracterize her words.

    They’re so in trouble that they’re resorting to pure fantasy.

    By the way, where, exactly, is the metapshere?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  7. DRJ, regarding perceptions and perceived insults in general reminds me of a joke that is relevant here.

    A man goes to see a psychiatrist. As part of his initial therapy, the psychiatrist shows the man a series of Rorschach ink blot cards. Displaying the first card to the man, the psychiatrist asks:

    “What does this image remind you of?”

    “Sex,” the patient answers without hesitation.

    Noting the man’s answer, the psychiatrist shows a second inkblot card. “And this card?” he asks.

    “Sex,” the patient answers, again without a pause.

    This continues for about ten cards, with the same answer from the man.

    Finally, the psychiatrist puts down the cards.

    “It seems that you think that all of these cards have something to do with sex,” the psychiatrist asked gently. “What do you think that might mean?”

    “Heck if I know,” answered the patient brightly. “You are the one showing all the dirty pictures.”

    Extreme partisans always see what they want to see.

    Eric Blair (9847a0)

  8. Some Obama aides see it as a knock against the poor and their material needs.

    Ed Morrisey on the community organizer jokes:

    [N]o, [the McCain campaign] mocked the notion that that experience somehow trumps being a mayor. You see, mayors get held accountable for their policies and their ability to remain in touch. Palin managed to do so well that she got re-elected, and then elected Governor.

    By the way, which of the two has actually risked their career to reform the system to kick out-of-touch politicians out of the system? Barack Obama played along with the Daley machine in Chicago. Palin fought her own party to end corruption in Alaska. Which one is the friend of out-of-touch politicians?

    Paul (ac3cf3)

  9. I saw the interview that Obama gave as he exited the O’Reilly interview. He claimed that Community Organizer helped the poor, and what was wrong with that, implying that Republicans don’t help the poor. Already changing the goal posts.

    lynndh (66e68f)

  10. For some reason I get the email messages sent out by the DNC and Obama’s campaign. They are enough to make you want to retch. This morning I was greeted with one from a flunky named David Plouffe which castigates McCain/Palin for demeaning “ordinary people,” i.e. community organizers. The message ended with a plea for a donation. Later today I received a message allegedly from Obama himself. Here is the text to it:

    JVW —

    Why would the Republicans spend a whole night of their convention attacking ordinary people?

    With the nation watching, the Republicans mocked, dismissed, and actually laughed out loud at Americans who engage in community service and organizing.

    Our convention was different. We gave the stage to everyday Americans who hunger for change and stepped up to make phone calls, knock on doors, and raise money in small amounts in their communities.

    You may have missed it, but we also showed the country a video with the faces and voices of those organizers, volunteers, and donors from every corner of the country.

    Watch the video and make a donation of $5 or more now to show that in this election, ordinary people will make their voices heard.

    [here was a link to his website]

    What you didn’t hear from the Republicans at their convention is a single new idea about how to make the healthcare system work, get our economy moving for the middle class, or improve education.

    Just attacks — on me, and on you.

    But what the McCain attack squad doesn’t understand is that people like you — who devote part of their busy lives to organizing and building their communities — have the power to change this country.

    With your help, that’s exactly what we’re going to do.

    Thank you,

    Barack

    As Apogee points out in comment #6, the Obama campaign has been desperate to find a way to play the race card and have fallen back on this. The fact that both messages are thinly-disguised appeals for money is a strong indication of this. Prepare for another two months of this, then the inevitable meme of “Barack couldn’t win in this racist country” after he gets his clock cleaned on election day.

    JVW (d54fc4)

  11. I’m down with Mahon’s definition in #4, but I was going to use the words rabble rouser. In an urban setting the left wing might be black, but Obama’s campaign is stretching it here again.

    Obama has constantly harped on how important his community organizing days were in his journey of self-discovery to the presidency and beyond, making it a critical part of his experience. It’s fair game to talk about it. He hasn’t been very forthcoming about much of it, like how he trained ACORN’s Armies, which have helped him out in his various campaigns and are basically a nationwide voter fraud organization.

    I’m wondering if he wants people looking more closely at these parts of his past.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  12. Stash,

    There’s good and bad news on arugula. The good news is I’ve eaten it. The bad news is I didn’t like it. I think that makes me elite trailer trash.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  13. “With the nation watching, the Republicans mocked, dismissed, and actually laughed out loud at Americans who engage in community service and organizing.”

    Yeah, like all those soldiers the left professes to support.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  14. It makes you elite trailer trash — the “Queen of the Heap”.

    wls (969303)

  15. Elitist trailer trash. And racist! Because of the hypocrisy! Or something.

    Seriously, Apogee nails it. They’re getting their asses kicked and there’s nothing they can do about it now. McCain could never mock Obama’s record unless they (team O) were stupid enough to somehow try and make light of his.

    So he did the next best thing and set the trap. Sure enough, O took the bait and his camp began mocking Sarah’s record. Should have thought that one through.

    Call it the McCain political palindrome. Or, what comes around, goes around. Pretty basic.

    Chris (6b9f67)

  16. DRJ – Beer questions could ne the decider on that call. Domestic or imported. Glass or can or bottle. Recycle or not.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  17. Very clever, WLS.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  18. I had to spellcheck “arugula” and still don’t know what it is. Plain ol’ trailer trash myself I guess.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  19. Beer? Alaskan Amber. No contest. Only comes in glass or on tap.

    MartyH (928d75)

  20. If I was still drinking my answer would be domestic straight out of the can with too much volume to bother recycling. Those little bins fill up too quick.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  21. I hesitate to say this, daley, but I don’t like beer either. On the other hand, I like Margaritas and I don’t think that’s an elite beverage.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  22. DRJ – I bet your trailer’s a double-wide. Luxury.
    daleyrocks – right now it’s a Corona. I’m an elitist pig.

    As for all the hubub, it would seem that if the Obama/Biden campaign is so outraged at these remarks, they’d ask for clarification from Palin.

    But they’re not asking, are they?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  23. Stash,

    It’s a salad green that’s popular on some Food Network shows I like, which is why I tried it. It tastes a little bitter to me but maybe that’s because my palate isn’t sophisticated enough to appreciate its charms.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  24. I guess that you are just hanging onto your lettuce, since you found the argula bitter?

    Eric Blair (9847a0)

  25. It would be nice if I could spell arugula, if I am going to try for a chuckle, I know.

    Eric Blair (9847a0)

  26. Trailer trash…
    Only if you see James Carville casting a C-note past your door…

    Do you drink your beer in long-necks or stubbies?

    Another Drew (67986d)

  27. Eric,

    I like romaine, and I also like your jokes.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  28. DRJ – If you’re going for the trailer trash or redneck ID, your lettuce choice absolutely has to be BIB, to go with your overalls or other suitable wardrobe choices.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  29. Eric Blair – you got a chuckle from me.

    Long necks – glass all the way. That way, when I scream STFU to that asshole in the Airstream who cranks the volume up on his Zenith at 2am, I can chuck them at the cats in the spillway and listen to the tinkling sound of the little pieces.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  30. So if we try to say that Obama is bitterly clinging to arugula, it’s redundant? 😉

    Yep, gotta go with Apogee and Chris on this one… Obama’s campaign didn’t think it through because they’re panicking. Mom and Dad told me today that they’re voting for McCain because of Palin’s family getting smeared (and they don’t like Biden at all). It will be the first time either one has voted Republican in their entire life and now they’re urging me to vote for McCain too. *snort*

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  31. Stashiu3…
    One should always listen to his Mother and Father.

    Another Drew (67986d)

  32. Stash,

    Your parents support the theory that everyone ends up a Republican. It just takes some people longer than others.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  33. This one is much better …

    McCain and Obama go ice fishing. And for days on end, McCain comes back with fish and Obama none. Finally Harry Reid tells Obama that McCain is cheating so dont fish, just follow McCain around and find out how. Obama then reports back that he has caught McCain cutting a hole in the ice!

    Neo (cba5df)

  34. Let me take a stab at an analogy:

    A community organizer is a lot like a men’s room attendant (do the ladies have these too?). You go in and do your business, then as you are washing your hands here he comes to squirt some liquid soap in there and hand you a paper towel. He also provides access to a comb, some mouthwash, and some breathmints, but it ain’t really like you needed any of that nonsense unless you generally go around in a disheveled state. For all his “help,” you are expected to drop a buck in his tip jar. It’s set up too so that you really can’t wash your hands without implicitly engaging his “services,” so lots of luck in trying to avoid him.

    That, to me, is a lot like what I imagine a “community organizer” does.

    JVW (d54fc4)

  35. There’s nothing wrong with being a community organizer. Every PTA President,Little League Coach, Neighborhood Council President, Kiwanis Club President, Junior Chamber of Commerce President, Service club President or officer of any kind has been a community organizer. Heck even Barack Obama has been a community organizer.

    But don’t give me that Michelle Obama whine about what a sacrifice it’s been to be a community organizer. Most people who do it do it out of a love of their organization and community. They’ve got other lives to lead as well–like responsibilities to their family’s and to their real jobs.

    But the Obamessiah is catching some justified flack for inflating the importance, and the amount of sacrifice involved, in what he did.

    Mike Myers (31af82)

  36. Definition – Community Organizer: BS title that makes Ivy league Law School admission committees swoon.

    Perfect Sense (7e9a58)

  37. Speaking of leaf vegetables to which people cling bitterly, I teach at an expensive private college. So most of the students are pretty well to do. The local fancy grocery store has been dubbed “The Museum of Food” (much as “Whole Foods” is called “Whole Paycheck”).

    Anyway, I was talking to my wife on the telephone before class started, and she asked me to pick up some mesclun from the Museum of Food so we could just dump it in a bowl and call it salad. The students overheard me, and giggled.

    They thought I has supposed to pick up some mescaline for dinner.

    Hmmm. I wonder what does go on in those dormitories?

    Actually, I remember all too well.

    Eric Blair (9847a0)

  38. It’s funny that after years of political discussions where I tried to show them that the Dem Party is not the same as it was in 1960, they’re going to change their party affiliation just after I left the Republican Party. If I had known, I would have gone Independent 15 years ago. Now they, my wife, and my oldest son are all going to vote McCain.

    One should always listen to his Mother and Father.
    Comment by Another Drew — 9/4/2008 @ 11:30 pm

    So all those years they wanted me to vote Democrat…? 😉

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  39. Community organizer is an entry level position for entrance to Ward politics in Chicago. It accomplishes two things — you get to meet the local elected officials, and you get to meet the private sector pooh baahs in the Ward. You also get your name circulating in the community who you want to vote for you someday.

    Its not completely selfless — its a means to an end. Obama followed the accepted script.

    wls (969303)

  40. Mike…
    All of the CO’s you list in your first para are admirable members of the community.
    Where BO falls down, is that his brand of orginizing was from the Saul Alinsky song-book of radical revolution. He, and those he encouraged, were not attempting to add to society, but to destroy it.

    Another Drew (67986d)

  41. So all those years they wanted me to vote Democrat…?

    My Dad did (Teamster).
    Got him to finally vote for RR in ’80, even though he refused to vote for him the two times he ran for Gov.

    Another Drew (67986d)

  42. This has nothing to do with the viability of a community organizer.

    Again, it would seem that if the Obama/Biden campaign is so outraged at these remarks, they’d ask for clarification from Palin. Especially since the the outrage is framed in the form of a question as to her ‘true’ meaning.

    Why do they not ask for a clarification?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  43. Community organizer is an entry level position for entrance to Ward politics in Chicago. It accomplishes two things — you get to meet the local elected officials, and you get to meet the private sector pooh baahs in the Ward. You also get your name circulating in the community who you want to vote for you someday.

    Its not completely selfless — its a means to an end. Obama followed the accepted script.

    Spot on, WLS. I somewhat disagree with Mike Myers comment in 37: the people he describes are “community leaders,” not “community organizers.” To me, the major difference is in that of accountability. You can quite readily judge the job done by the PTA President, little league coach, etc., but “community organizer” seems a malleable enough job description that you can take credit for anything that goes well in your community while avoiding blame for anything that does not.

    JVW (d54fc4)

  44. I was a social worker for many years and the real issue is that he was a paid community organizer. No big sacrifice there on his part, except he might have been able to get a better paying job. The real thing that makes it a joke is that after many years, most of us in social work realize that we’d be the first folks tossed off the island, since in general, we don’t do anything that would be necessary in an emergency except hand out government resources. If you were looking at me or a nurse, well, I guess you’d probably pick the nurse. If you were looking at me or an electrician, well, you get the picture? I loved my work and I did help people and change lives, but unlike Mr. Obama, I didn’t have an exaggerated view of my value.

    Palaces (a200f6)

  45. JVW and WLS—doesn’t it make you shudder (or roll your eyes) to think of how a President Obama would define “service” for all of the youth of America?

    Something tells me that canvassing for Republican candidates would not count. Nor would gun safety training.

    That is what bothers me about “community organizers”: it is pretty much code for “Left Progressive Activist.”

    Am I wrong?

    Eric Blair (9847a0)

  46. community organizer: Head hippie in charge of a group of Peace Corps rejects.

    WSB (c9e2fb)

  47. I thought I got the joke — that liberals think “organizing” a community is the same as “governing” a community.

    It’s like liberals value self-reliance almost as much as big government. But conservatives know better — self-reliance is something to be mockingly compared to governing. Just ask Sarah Palin, the Pork Queen from the Socialist State of Alaska.

    Nikolay (f5b13d)

  48. JVW and WLS—doesn’t it make you shudder (or roll your eyes) to think of how a President Obama would define “service” for all of the youth of America?

    I reckon it would be like Bill Clinton’s vision of service as advanced by his AmeriCorps idea: $10/hour and full health coverage in make-work summer jobs. Not exactly like working in the soup kitchen for your local church, is it?

    JVW (d54fc4)

  49. It’s like liberals value self-reliance almost as much as big government. But conservatives know better — self-reliance is something to be mockingly compared to governing.

    Huh? Hitting the vodka hard tonight Nikolay?

    JVW (d54fc4)

  50. As I’ve written elsewhere:

    From June 1985 to May 1988, Obama was a community organizer with the Developing Communities Project in Chicago, working primarily to organize a housing project called Altgeld Gardens. According to the Boston Globe:

    For all its impact on Obama, Altgeld Gardens today seems far from the kind of success story politicians like to tout.

    Dozens of buildings are boarded up, with fences surrounding much of the property. The roads are a potholed mess. Blinking lights illuminate a series of towers where police have mounted cameras.

    That’s change you can believe in. Moreover, Hazel Johnson, who has lived at Altgeld Gardens since 1962 – and was an organizer long before Obama appeared on the scene – claims Obama has exaggerated his role in getting asbestos removed from the projects. Otherwise, Obama did not get much done — and even had difficulty explaining what a “community organizer” did.

    If Obama couldn’t explain it to his buds at Columbia (without embarassing himself for reasons suggested upthread), it’s kinda tough to argue it’s racial.

    Karl (1b4668)

  51. #48 – Nikolay

    Just ask Sarah Palin, the Pork Queen from the Socialist State of Alaska.

    — Says the Puke Queen from the State of Shittalkia.

    Icy Truth (8d362f)

  52. What kind of “racial connotations” are there in mentioning the time Obama spent gathering the poor into groups and handing out copies of Mao’s little red book?

    — Think I’m kidding?

    “Men and women must receive equal pay for equal work in production. Genuine equality between the sexes can only be realized in the process of the socialist transformation of society as a whole.”

    Remove “in production”, and either remove “socialist” or change it to ‘collective’, and you would not know which one of them said it.

    Icy Truth (1d7751)

  53. the time Obama spent gathering the poor into groups and handing out copies of Mao’s little red book?

    Why not say “handling out copies of Mein Kampf”? I mean, if you want to smear Catholic Church, which Obama was working for, why not go all the way?

    Nikolay (f5b13d)

  54. Why not say “handling out copies of Mein Kampf”?

    Because while they may both be murderers, the ideals of Mao are linked with current leftist thought, and that makes the left very uncomfortable.

    So, no, Icy will not provide cover for leftists.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  55. When hasn’t the Obama campaign “resorted” to playing the race card?

    His campaign is the race card. If he weren’t black they would never have pushed him.

    Anything that you say about him, you’re saying about a black man, and how dare you? My question is: should he win, will this continue? Will the honeymoon with the media have to last forever? Will Jay Leno make fun of a black man on TV for being, forgive me lord, stupid? Have you noticed how hard they push how smart Obama is down our throats? I’m sorry, he doesn’t seem that smart to me. What has he ever said that was so brilliant? I’ve not yet heard it.

    She was responding to the attacks that they leveled against her, and for that she gets called a racist, when they HE mocked her for being a small town mayor. So what does that make him?

    When you’re a C.O. does anyone know what you’ve done? Where you are? What you’ve approved of? Who your loyal to? (outside of your church). Can anyone vote on who gets to be a C.O.?

    The thing about the Obama campaign that strikes me as really odd, is that he wants to continue faith based initiatives, which the left freaked out over when Bush started them.

    Obama will support corrupt unions, and funnel money into churches. That’s progressive? That’s change?

    This one has had me freaked out for a while:

    http://hotair.com/archives/2008/05/05/obama-teamsters-deal-to-end-federal-oversight/

    xerocky (cf0c5e)

  56. He wasn’t ready for prime time, but they didn’t want to wait 8 years on Shillery. They had no idea that McCain could win.

    Redneck is a Big-Mac with shredded iceberg.

    Hazy (d671ab)

  57. Obama and the Democrats are just showing that they have NO CLASS, and McNuggets and Palin have Class in spades.

    Watch VEV come in and call me a racist. JD’s already here and is warming up his “racist macro”.

    Oh, IF I drank beer, it would be PBR (Pabst Blue Ribbon).

    PCD (5c49b0)

  58. Don’t most Community Organizers live off the public purse? So much of the money(A la ACORN) comes from the federal trough. Does a Community Organizer think the the abbreviation CO means community organizer and that a CO has the same experiences as a community organizer? What hubris!

    Tim (c44c15)

  59. If Obama is so proud of his efforts to help the poor pehaps he can relate to us some of his successes in Alteld Gardens or the Chicago Annenberg Challenge

    ThomasD (211bbb)

  60. The “community organizer” thing seems very important to Obama. Maybe it is a way of demonstrating credentials when the purge trials come.

    The lefties don’t understand that the McCain campaign has pivoted and is now running on a reform theme. That opens up the whole Chicago can of worms. I hope they are as smart as I am giving them credit for being.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  61. From my experience in my city a community organizer has a bad connotation. We have “community organizers” who continually stir the crap up around here and blackmail our city government saying if they don’t get this or that they will tell the people to burn it down. My city has given out millions to these “community organizers”. Some to get them out of the city or make them shut up. Nothing good gets done for the people they say they represent but the “community organizers” sure have nice cars, homes and lots of bling.

    Hogtrashhd (dbc253)

  62. Hog…

    From chicago, are you?

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  63. This is the best reason for not voting for Obama for President. If elected we’ll have to put up with years of this twit claiming that every single criticism of him is racist.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  64. I thought that when you tout your credentials in a position you’re supposed to really push your accomplishments from the job. Something like, “As a community organizer, this many: jobs were created, children were immunized, library cards were issued, meals for the indigent were served, etc.”
    Has Obama ever created this bullet-point list? What the hell do they expect people to do but roll their eyes and mock the oft-repeated “I was a community organizer” when you never provide the results of the job as proof that you “get things done.”
    I could be wrong and would appreciate substantive evidence that “community organizing” really improved the lives of Obama’s constituents in a meaningful way, if it is not too racist of me to make such a request.

    Jack Klompus (b0e238)

  65. Cool, Larry, then if he was a typical ACORN hack, then he probably filed a half million voter registrations for “Mickey Mouse” and “Minnie Mouse”.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  66. Palin should be careful about irritating a block of voters with that disparaging attack on Obama’s Community Organizer stuff. I think she may have hit her “bitter comment” scandal, moment. Already angry COs are launching web sites to protest the insult.
    Check this out.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  67. You mean teh Obama-backed movement? Yeah, they weren’t already biased against her or anything…

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  68. This is just typical leftist misdirection.

    And since our opponents in this presidential election seem to look down on that experience, let me explain to them what the job involves.

    I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a “community organizer,” except that you have actual responsibilities.

    Palin was mocking The One’s use of “community organizer” as a claim of leadership experience and the leftists are claiming it is an attack on the role of “community organizer.”

    jeff (fa136d)

  69. Community Organizers in the Obama mold are nothing but community disruptors and blackmailers.

    Oops, will VEV be back calling me a racist?

    PCD (5c49b0)

  70. Dunno… but I will…

    PCD, you racist…

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  71. #70
    Welcome to the game of politics. What you say can be used against you. Even when you say it with the best of intentions. When you say the Mayor has “actual responsibilities”, it could easily come across as dissing some other person’s work and painting yourself as an out-of-touch, proud, high and mighty Elitist. It’s as if she is saying that Community Organizers have no actual responsibilities. That is an insult. Not to Obama, but to all community organizers in the country. That is not the kind of image you want to cast for yourself. (Who knows whether it was a trap. Maybe getting her to make a misstatement.) This won’t go away that easily. I can tell you that.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  72. Lovey, you trying to put manure spreader manufacturers out of business? Show me the tangible measurables of Community Organizers vs. the tangible measurables of being a Mayor.

    You can crawl back under your rock to your liberal bunker now.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  73. Scott, you Ward (Churchill) healer.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  74. Now that they have been so cruelly, harshly, and sarcastically slandered and their tremendous track records of accomplishments belittled, I do think that the community organizer voting bloc might indeed switch their allegiances and actually vote for Obama.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  75. Given the DNC is struggling to defend this, then why do they refuse to provide which community organization he helped organize? That would help everyone understand which organization he worked for and what he did. Let’s hear from those who worked with Obama!!! Is there anyone??? Or is this another one of his creations without substance???

    margaret (bc677b)

  76. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being a community organizer. It just shouldn’t be the HIGHLIGHT of the resume of a presidential candidate.

    (Now if there were some actual ACCOMPLISHMENTS during those community organizer years, those would go a long way in burnishing a very thin resume.)

    Mike S (d3f5fd)

  77. By the way, I think palin has helped Obama more than she helped her party. Obama campaign was able to raise up to $10 million within 24 hours after her speech on wednesday. That is more than the, about 1 million dollars McCain got that day and 7 million dollars his campaign got announced she was going to be his VP. Maybe she is helping Obama more. You see by mocking Obama’s CO credentials, she has effectively painted him as one who is more in touch with the people. Who do you think is more in touch with the ordinary American? The Mayor/Chief Executive or the Community Organizer? Who is more elitist and out of touch. She has effectively sold Obama a line he would be using in the weeks to come. More footages of his Community Organizer days and how he worked with ordinary folks will only help to endear him more to the very people McCain needs to win this election. Palin is a gift to the Democrats. She must not be stopped. 😉

    love2008 (1b037c)

  78. Saying a small-town mayor has “actual responsibilities”, comes across as painting yourself as an out-of-touch, proud, high and mighty Elitist?

    Wow!

    Mike S — 9/5/2008 @ 7:37 am

    Exactly!

    jeff (fa136d)

  79. This won’t go away that easily. I can tell you that.

    And that’s a good thing. Shine the brightest light we have right down on all the tax money flowing down the gofer [no sic please] holes. Legalized extortion is still extortion. Of course, the best legal extortionists are higher up the food chain, leaning back in law offices dreaming about their next deep pocket victim, but still…

    allan (504420)

  80. “More footages of his Community Organizer days and how he worked with ordinary folks”
    I’m sure Geraldo will be finding these footages in Al Capone’s vault any day now.

    Still waiting for a list of the concrete results of being one of those in-touch-with-the-people CO’s. I’m sure the neighborhood that Obama organized is a shining example of a thriving, healthy, safe community all thanks to the magic touch of O!

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  81. Someone please find the zip code and demographics of the community that BO organized so brilliantly and maybe a little statistical analysis of certain indicators, a little Before Obama – After Obama comparison. Any concrete measure of Obama’s accomplishments? Any? Hello? (crickets)

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  82. Obama campaign was able to raise up to $10 million within 24 hours after her speech on wednesday. That is more than the, about 1 million dollars McCain got that day and 7 million dollars his campaign got announced she was going to be his VP.

    So?

    If WLS is correct about donations vs. spending, Obama’s still in alot of trouble.

    Paul (ac3cf3)

  83. 79, Lovey, McNuggets is taking public funding like Obamassiah said he would before Obamassiah decided he wasn’t going to grab every lobbyst dollar he could grab. Donations to McNuggets have to go through the RNC, or didn’t you see the various notices posted to GOP donors on this and other boards frequented by GOP leaning people?

    That is why your stats are skewed.

    Try again Democrat hack.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  84. Jack:
    York in NRO

    “I spent some time in Chicago last month talking to the people who worked with Obama there. Everyone I interviewed, … they all told me they have high regard for Obama and support him for president.
    But when it comes to lasting accomplishments, Obama’s list isn’t very long. “

    Unix-Jedi (651a1b)

  85. 82, Jack, how can you mention Cement and Al Capone in the same post? Are you trying to send a subtile threat?

    PCD (5c49b0)

  86. In my Vietnam war youth the COs I knew were conscientous objectors while working at a state hospital near Philly. Most were farm boys from Ohio, Indiana and southern Illinois. They all seemed pretty much interested only in fast cars and women.

    So Obama’s CO appears to be urban agitator, to give him magic negro street cred. GOP shlud play it up that CO, in Obama’s case is synonymous with the fine narrative of what he accomplished with ACORN, Annenberg challenge where $150 mil vanished into the ether and that Chitown hosuing renewal deal that served to line the pockets of BHO’s crooked developer friends like Rezno. And today we are aware that Obama helps out Biden’s lobbyist son? One hand washes the other? How much of Obama’s “work” actually went to help Daley’s machine?
    It is also amusing that the big ZERO/big PUSSY that Obama is inside needs to send out female surrogates to attempt to stymie the inroads made my Sarah Palin’s use of her substantive record to outshine the Anointed part-Negro’s so-called Style and post-racism VS.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  87. UJ – thanks for the link.
    PCD – I think I just had a hankerin’ for some bootleg hooch.
    madmax – Was that Byberry State Hospital?

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  88. People who say that Obama is inexperienced tend tio forger his state Senate record.

    Did you know Obama voted against a law that would have created a loophole in local handgun bans?

    The loophole would have allowed people who used handguns to defend themselves against intruders to assert self-defense as a legal defense against prosecution for violating local handgun bans.

    Michael Ejercito (a757fd)

  89. #75, “Ward Heeler” has a pedestrian association.

    From YourDictionary

    ward heeler: a person who works for a political party or boss at the lowest level, as in a ward or other city district, soliciting votes, performing minor tasks, etc.: often used with mild contempt.

    “Heeler” is an older term for a “loafer, one on the lookout for shady work”

    Ropelight (49e412)

  90. Community organizing is a process by which people are brought together to act in common self-interest and compel others to join them. While organizing describes any activity involving people interacting with one another in a formal manner, much community organizing is in the pursuit of a common agenda. Many groups seek populist goals and the ideal of participatory democracy. Community organizers are often times foot soldiers for the local political machine. Political machines were once very prevalent in the older and larger U.S. cities in the first half of the 20th century, especially around the time of Al Capone. Only a few political machines prevail today, most notably in Chicago. Community organizers create social movements by building a base of concerned people, mobilizing these community members to act, and developing leadership from and relationships among the people involved.

    Hogtrashhd (dbc253)

  91. No, Norristown State. I recall when Byberry shut down and they sent their mostly useless white trash union employees to work with us.

    Back in the sixties, the state system did rather suck, but emptying the snake pits and throwing the truly deranged back into the community was not the answer. It seems that like many school districts are now, the mental health institutions became top heavy with administrative assholes formulating endless new make-work paper pushing empires. I envision that is how a Hillary Public Health Care house of cards would have ended up. Want to bet that Obama would make the same efforts- taxing the hell out of us for univeral health care that fucks up what already works well? Layer upon layer of useless dem-connected drones with fancy ass titles and obedience to the Bwana Messiah’s edicts? Ditto for his domestic Peace Corps ideas.
    What did they ever do with Pa. state facilities they shut down? I don’t follow Pa. state government much now except to see what Fast Eddie Rendell is up to as mayor. I should check to see how he fared in voting outside of Philly. Lynn Swann would have been a superior choice, but the dipwads in Pa. don’t much care for Uncle Toms, I presume? Speaking of mayors, Street is another work of art, eh? No dirt in his office..jajajaja.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  92. 91, look closer and deeper, ropelight. I said Ward (Churchill) Healer. Try taking the 1st two words as a name, then run with it.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  93. meant former Philly mayor’s stint now as crusading governor of the great commonwealth of Pa.

    Based on all the people I saw into hunting, guns, fishing in areas beyond the dem-controlled big cities, I’d say Palin will add plenty of enthusiasm for the ticket among those “racist red necks”.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  94. Byberry became an abandoned squatter zone, a gathering place for wannabe Satanists and ghost chasers and has now entered the realm of gothic horror lore. I think it’s since been turned into a senior living community. I’m sure a significant number of deranged homeless people that are roaming the streets of Philly are former residents.
    John Street is a worthless, racist sack of excrement. He was basically a rabble-rousing “community organizer” who inexplicably became a two term mayor. But then again, in Philly politics that’s who becomes king.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  95. 89, Jack, call Bo and Luke Duke. They are ready to deliver in the General Lee.

    PCD (5c49b0)

  96. Important to understand you can’t explain yourselves to these people. They don’t want explanations, just supplication. Rather, one must see their outrage as directional signs to your goal.

    rrpjr (fb0748)

  97. #91, Say what you will, it’s your construction. Forgive me, I must have missed something clever.

    Ropelight (49e412)

  98. I cannot believe how incredibly racist you all are.

    JD (5f0e11)

  99. 97. Aren’t they the prototype of the “typical GOP voter?” Along with that frothing hellfire preacher, the guy in the Klan getup, and Ted Knight’s Judge Smails character from Caddyshack?

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  100. “Judge Smails”…
    To me, he was the proto-typical “Country Club Republican” ass-hat.

    Another Drew (faec8a)

  101. “By the way, I think palin has helped Obama more than she helped her party. Obama campaign was able to raise up to $10 million within 24 hours after her speech on wednesday.”

    Lovey – She scared the shit out of them didn’t she?

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  102. By the way, I think palin has helped Obama more than she helped her party. Obama campaign was able to raise up to $10 million within 24 hours after her speech on wednesday.

    Remember, as WLS has posted, that Obama has opted out of public funding for his campaign, so he has to raise money at this level in order to pay for his army of campaign workers as well as to fund Hillary’s travel. Sure he had a big day, but can he continue to bring in the $75-100 million per month that he is going to need?

    JVW (d54fc4)

  103. What’s his nut again? $2M+/day?
    And, to match McCain, he’s going to need a Net of at least another $1M/day?
    Just how in Hell is he going to raise, between now and the election (61 days) $180M+?
    Especially, in an economy that is teetering on the brink of the greatest economic collapse in history?

    Another Drew (faec8a)

  104. The Four Horseman of the Democrat Party:

    Democrats have only four weapons to use against Sarah Palin: Sexism, Racism, Hypocrisy, and Character Assassination. She’s everything Dems say they admire, yet they can only win in November by destroying her.

    Best if Dems turn their mirrors to the wall, and pull the covers up over their heads, now isn’t a good time for self-examination.

    Ropelight (49e412)

  105. “Community Organizer” is nothing but a political metaphor for “Ivory Poacher”.

    C. Norris (e8c11f)

  106. Read Sol Alinsky’s book, “Rules for Radicals” to learn from the master what a community organizer is

    MadDoc (9a6eaa)

  107. #106 Ropelight – now isn’t a good time for self-examination.

    Democrats cannot self-examine. If they could, they wouldn’t be democrats.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  108. They can’t get past gazing at their navels.

    Another Drew (faec8a)

  109. An estimated 125 people were shot and killed over the summer. That’s nearly double the number of U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq over the same time period.

    According to the Defense Department, 65 U.S. soldiers were killed in combat in Iraq. About the same number were killed in Afghanistan over that same period.

    Perhaps Biden can come up with a plan to partition the city while we withdrawal all Americans … from Chicago.

    Sounds like they really need a “community organizer”.

    Neo (cba5df)

  110. Community organizer is an entry level position for entrance to Ward politics in Chicago. It accomplishes two things — you get to meet the local elected officials, and you get to meet the private sector pooh baahs in the Ward. You also get your name circulating in the community who you want to vote for you someday.

    Its not completely selfless — its a means to an end. Obama followed the accepted script.

    It wasn’t selfless at all. He was a paid community organizer, setting up a monocultural political system that Democrats could depend on for votes. Simultaneously he was laying the footings for his own political career – and taxpayer funds through the crooked ACORN were paying the checks.

    After his return from Harvard, his terrorist crony Bill Ayers appointed him chairman of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. He disbursed from that lofty position over $100,000,000 in funds which were intended to improves schoolchildren’s academic performance. The funds went to ‘community organizing’ activists, and school performance show no improvement whatever after five years of the program.

    That is ‘community organizing’ with a vengeance, and those who do it are about equal with Lenin’s ‘professional revolutionaries’ – all of them paid, not selfless.

    Insufficiently Sensitive (8f6a35)

  111. Please… I’ve seen her accused of freaking witchcraft, for God’s Sake…

    NOTHING they do shocks me anymore. NOTHING.

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  112. John Judis has a very interesting piece at TNR today about how Obama became disillusioned with community organizing in the 1980s and decided to quit and go to law school.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  113. See this IBD editorial about Obama’s plans “to create a boot camp for radicals who hate the military — and stick American taxpayers” with the bill to the tune of $500 billion.

    I get to practice being an activist, and get paid for it

    jeff (fa136d)

  114. “Community organizer” is a broad term. Specifically, the kind of community organizing work Barack Obama was involved in was to mobilize economically disadvantaged citizens in Chicago to ask for and exert pressure on their elected representatives or those in authority to provide much needed services or help in their community. That’s my understanding of what he did between his years after Columbia and before Harvard Law. It was a church-based community organization he worked with at that time.

    My issue is that Gov. Sarah Palin would openly mock all community organizers in general, by directly implying that community organizers have no responsibility. That’s tantamount to saying that community organizers do nothing or are worthless in America. Could it not be possible that at least SOME of America’s community organizers actually help their communities? Why would you want to issue a blanket insult to people who may be doing vital work in poor communities for those who need help the most but have the least resources?

    But let’s take the socio-political part out of the equation. It’s not just about poor communities. Community organizers might be helping provide cultural or sports or social activities in your own town, right? What if a community organizer is working for an organization like the YMCA. Why would you insult work done by the YMCA? Without provocation, and on national television, no less? We heard community organizers on the whole being mocked by 3 speeches, with one given by the Vice-Presidential candidate herself.

    I am a pro-life, pro-traditional definition of marriage, Evangelical Christian (who happens to be a Canadian) – so I support the Republican party on a lot of things. But I also like a lot of what I seen in Sen. Obama’s policy positions (universal health care, for one thing – I am Canadian, after all). But one thing I think supporters of either party should be united on is the conclusion that openly mocking a whole group of people who work to better the communities we all live in. Sure, there may be some bad apples in the group, or some organizations with goals that stand against what you fundamentally believe in, but we shouldn’t let those examples inform our entire perception of community organizing work.

    Paulman (09cf4d)

  115. Paulman, odd that it is only tantamount to saying that community organizers do nothing or are worthless when she said that they have no responsibility. Guess it was not possible for you to think of an argument against what she actually said, so you had to find some tantamounts to argue against.

    By the way, I’ll say that “community organizers” are useless. Actually they are worse than useless, all the “community organizing” that goes on here consists of rabble rousers obstructing any efforts to get anything useful done in my community. Usually fueled by funding from outsiders who don’t have to live with the consquences of their obstruction.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  116. Tomorrow, I’ll write on how it is that Canadians are useless.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  117. 116 Canadian fan of univeral health are- so all the anecdotal evidence that Canadian health universal health care rots is just so much BS, eh? Health care is not rationed, plenty of expensive care is given the green light, no one dies waiting for testing for mild ailments such as cancer, eh? Hubba hubba, guess I should carry my sorry ass to Canada? Wonder why so many foolish Canadians bother spending their money in good old USA for medical care then? Yes, I know some Americans avail themselves of cheaper Canadian drugs.
    The thing that would surely gladden my heart and make me really consider relocating there is that fabulous star chamber for free speech. Nice touch prosecuting national treasure Mark Steyn for merely repeating the evil words of Islamic terrorists in his written works. Sorry, your liberal pricks there are clueless twatmuffins stomping on rights of people in order to defend shithead radical Islamoterrorist organizations.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  118. #54 – Nikolay

    if you want to smear Catholic Church, which Obama was working for, why not go all the way?

    — Apogee already explained why I made the Mao reference; it’s too bad that he had to do that, since it should have been self-evident. Oh, and I did not smear the Catholic church AT ALL.

    Icy Truth (6e6d48)

  119. Paulman 116:

    If we knew of what Obama has done as a community organizer, we might not be openly mocking what community organizers do.

    Since we don’t we are left to our own devices….

    reff (b68a4f)

  120. SPQR, I just looked up “tantamount” to double check its definition, and dictionary.com defines it as “equivalent” as in value, force, effect, or signification. Under synonyms, it lists the word “equal”. So tantamount doesn’t mean “close to” or “kind of like” – it means “the same as”. When Gov. Palin says that a certain profession has no actual responsibilities, she is saying that they are expected to get nothing done. Hence, they are “useless”.

    I’m starting to understand why there are a bunch of people who agree with the attacks against “community organizers” that Gov. Palin (and Rudy Giuliani and Gov. Pataki) made. People equate it with a left-wing community organizer for political purposes. Perhaps that is true for some community organizers, but by no means does it make it true for all of them. Sen. Obama’s first work before Harvard Law was part of a church-based community organization that worked to get basic needs or services for that community. His voter registration drive was something he did after graduating from Harvard Law, I believe. But I think June says it best in a comment left on organizersfightback.wordpress.com when she says that her work in getting 911 service established as a community organizer in a rural mountain community was denigrated as well. Improving health care/access in a rural mountain community – surely that’s not what Gov. Palin or the GOP wanted to denigrate, but in their broad attack on “community organizers”, that’s who was fired upon as well.

    I hope that helps bring perspective. And anyways, we Canadians are bearing the brunt of combat action in Afghanistan because your U.S. soldiers moved on to Iraq. I’m not bitter against America for that – in fact I love Americans! That’s why I’m following your politics.

    Paulman (09cf4d)


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