Enter the guttersnipe. Announcing that the “gloves are off and the heels are on”, Sarah Palin took to the hustings in an erstwhile attempt to assassinate the character of the Democratic nominee for President of the United States. It seems that the Jedi had made the acquaintance of one Bill Ayers, one of the founders of the “Weathermen” or “Weather Underground”, an off-shoot of the 60's group “Students for a Democratic Society” or SDS. The Weathermen got their name, it is held, from Bob Dylan's line “you don't need the weather man to know which way the wind blows”, and became a more radical and violent exponent of resistance to the Vietnam war. Ayers, it is held, was involved in plans to bomb government buildings back in the late 60's or early 70's, but by the time he met Obama he had become a Professor at the University of Illinois and was serving as a board member on a charity run by the Annanburg family, staunch Republicans who had earned high level appointments from none other than Ronald Reagan himself.
It was on this conservative board that Obama met Ayers who, he understood, had by this time become rehabilitated. Nonetheless the Resumlicans, led by their newest howler the guttersnipe in heels, have attempted to paint a disturbing picture of the Democratic nominee as somehow threatening. Palin was out on the stump screeching that Obama “thinks nothing of palling around with terrorists”, with “people who would hurt America”.
The strategy is straightforward enough. Chris Matthews of MSNBC has caught on to it: “Connect the dots” he said, the use of Obama's middle name “Hussein” as McCain and Palin are introduced, link him with the “weather underground” and label him dangerous, investigate his contributors and charge that he is getting money from “Arab” sources. Already a flourishing internet campaign alleging that Obama is secretly a Muslim has been doing its worst for months. Seen Hannity has given these charges national accreditation. Building on this the Rescumlicans are working to “swift-boat” Obama into a 'One-man sleeper cell'. Playing 'all-Ayers-all-the-time', and doing her best imitation of Ann Coulter, the guttersnipe in heels has been addressing rancorous rallies in which the undertone has become increasingly hateful, dangerous and violent. Shouts of “traitor” and “kill him” and “terrorist” come from the crowd as the two Republican nominees spew their rescumlican screed.
“why did you throw the jack of hearts away
why did you throw the jack of hearts away?
It was the only card in the deck
that I had left to play” ----The Doors “Hyacinth House”
The awful truth is that the good Marshall cannot bring himself to throw away the only card in the deck that he has left to play: the race card. By painting Obama as an “Arab”, an “African-Arab” if you will, by alluding to imaginary “terrorist” connections, and a “foreign religion” the “Straight-talk Express” can avoid the charge of conducting a racist campaign as it has been traditionally understood in these United States by conducting an untraditional racist campaign. The Marshall and his minions were made to understand, in the wake of Obama's European Tour that the charge that he was presumptuous in appearing presidential to enthusiastic European crowds—crowds larger than JFK or what is worse to the political wrong Ronnie Reagan himself—were quickly decoded by a discerning electorate as a simple code word for “uppity”. Similarly the angry old curmudgeon, and author of the Nixonian Code Words, Pat Buchanan was quickly called down by a black woman for his use of the word “exotic” when describing Obama. “What is that, a substitute for the “N” word?” he was asked. No, the rescumlicans discovered, these tactics simply won't do. Another strategy must be employed. And so it was deemed that they would tar the Democratic Nominee with associations to our current enemies by any means necessary. The old code words simply won't do, new code words are necessary.
This week saw not only the guttersnipe bring political discourse down to the level of her expectations, but his wife Cindy excoriate Obama for voting against funding for the troops. Citing her own son's service “ol sin savagely criticized Obama for voting against funding for the Iraq war that did not include a time line of withdrawal forgetting to mention that her husband likewise voted “against” the troops when funding included such a time line. But in an unprecedented act by a potential First Lady, Cindy McCain joined the chorus as the rescumlican slime machine went about the business of ginning up the base.
But, alas, during this week's debate with Obama, the good Marshall would bring none of this up. For ninety minutes he squared off with the Jedi and not once were these charges brought up demonstrating that the good Marshall would rather hide behind the skirts of his wife and his running mate, as they do the “heavy lifting” of the campaign. No, it seems, the good Marshall of Tombstone has not the courage of his convictions and when he faced his adversary in the middle of main street he simply “Quayled”. “A sheep in sheep's clothing”, Winston Churchill had once derisively referred to a political opponent; perhaps none dare call it cowardice.