The L Word

The public is catching-on to the fact that Obama is a liberal, and there is a presumption in the media (e.g., the Wall St. Journal) that this will work against him in the general election, that Americans still treat “liberal” as a dirty word.

The negative association with this word is going to change over the course of an eight year Obama presidency, just as it drifted out of favor during Reagan’s eight years, when (typical GOP tactic) they started simply using the word as a negative label, treating the negative connotation as a given, and thus creating it.

But give Obama a chance, and in the American zeitgeist the thinking will go, “Obama is a liberal? But we love Obama… I guess we don’t hate liberals after all”.

Indeed, Bush has already gotten the ball rolling, doing much to de-stigmatize the “liberal” label by virtue of his presumed position as a conservative (he really isn’t one, by the way). That Bush is presumed to be conservative allows Americans to call into question their knee-jerk affiliation with that side of our political continuum.

Another portent to a shift in favor for the word liberal includes the fact that there is now a market for books with titles like Why We’re Liberals (Eric Alterman, from Viking) and The Conscience of a Liberal (Paul Krugman, from W. W. Norton & Company).

Alterman book image krugman book cover

All it takes to complete the L word’s makeover is a single, unifying leader who isn’t afraid to wear the liberal mantle. I think Obama’s up to the task!


Tags: , ,

31 Responses to “The L Word”

  1. citizenwells Says:

    We need to know the truth about Obama.

    Obama has not provided records when asked by many
    news sources such as Tim Russert, The Chicago Tribune,
    and The Chicago Sun Times. He has only provided
    lame excuses.

    Obama used drugs when he was younger.

    Obama has been accused of drug use in November 1999.

    Robert Johnson, the founder of BET, stated:
    “Barack Obama was doing something in the neighborhood -­ and I won’t

    say what he was doing, but he said it in the book -­ when they have

    been involved.”
    Johnson apologized.
    However, Obama spokesman Bill Burton stated:
    “His tortured explanation doesn’t hold up against his original


    Obama was absent from the Illinois Senate
    on November 4, 1999. His name was on 2 bills
    mentioned during that session.
    Does anyone know where Obama was on November 4?

  2. Misanthropic Scott Says:

    Two points. Point 1: Obama is a liberal only by todays incredibly right shifted standards. The only true liberal in the running was Kucinich. Point 2: The opposite of liberal is stingy. The opposite of conservative is progressive. But, that’s just a dictionary talking.

    I agree with you though. I would love to see liberal become a good word again. I find myself voting for the democrats, the party that allowed liberal to become a bad word so that the Liberal party would die and they’d lose some competition. I want my Liberal party back.

    As an aside, irrelevant now that Guiliani is out but still interesting, Giuliani never would have been elected mayor of New York if not for being on the Liberal ticket, as well as the Republican one. In fact, while mayor, he endorsed Democrat Cuomo over fellow Republican Pataki by endorsing Cuomo as a fellow Liberal. His line was “Vote for Cuomo on the Liberal ticket.”

  3. withappens Says:

    citizenwells, your comment suggests that drug use, as a youth, would be a deal-breaker as a candidate. Call me a liberal, but I think a person who hasn’t ever tried drugs is way outside the mainstream, and possibly not qualified to make informed judgments with regard to national drug policy. Would you trust someone who had never taken a drink to make US policy on alcohol sale and consumption?

    This isn’t 1953. Reefer Madness was propaganda, you know.

  4. citizenwells Says:

    The drug use earlier was only a miniscule part of the puzzle. The fact
    by itself doesn’t mean much. The bigger question is why is Obama
    so evasive and full of diversions. If Obama has nothing to hide, he
    should be able to provide records of his activities.

  5. Misanthropic Scott Says:


    You said:

    Obama was absent from the Illinois Senate
    on November 4, 1999. His name was on 2 bills
    mentioned during that session.
    Does anyone know where Obama was on November 4?

    Um. Probably in a bar with McCain. McCain hasn’t been present for a single vote on the environment, the most important issue there is IMNSHO. They all miss sessions once in a while. McCain’s the one who misses them consistently.

  6. citizenwells Says:

    Did McCain admit to drug use and get accused of drug use in 1999?
    Has McCain associated with criminals, racists and hate mongers?

  7. withappens Says:

    citizenwells, despite your earlier claim, you still seem focused on this drug-use non-issue.

    And as for McCain’s associates… you don’t think Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell are racist hate-mongers?!? I think the word “criminal” can certainly be applied to their activity, if not as a technical legal definition, then at least as an apt adjective.

    Getting back to the drug-use thing you seem so focused on, despite your claim to the contrary – was the accusation in 1999, or the alleged drug use… you’ve mentioned this twice now and I still can’t figure it out.

    Look: if you don’t like Obama, you’re welcome to do so without having to cite all this questionable evidence of evil and wrong-doing. It don’t necessarily make you a racist. Don’t sweat it! But take a close look at who is funding and supporting both Hillary and McCain’s campaigns, and then maybe your outrage won’t look so naive.

  8. citizenwells Says:

    This is not complex.
    If Obama has nothing to hide, he will produce records.

  9. citizenwells Says:

    Outrage is an interesting word for asking simple questions.

  10. withappens Says:

    OK… what records? His whereabouts on Nov 4 2007??? Who cares?

  11. Misanthropic Scott Says:

    If anyone cares, apparently Obama’s drug use was in High School. So was mine. I think the statute of limitations as well as the record of a minor, if there ever was a record, which seems unlikely, would be irrelevant.

  12. Misanthropic Scott Says:

    Sorry, that should read that the statute of limitations would be over.

  13. citizenwells Says:

    Diversions seem to be the theme for the Obama campaign and Obama
    supporters. You are focusing on one small part of what I said and trying
    to portray that as the thrust of what I am saying.
    Read my lips:
    It is about honesty.
    It is about disclosure.
    It is about integrity.
    Who cares about Obama’s whereabouts on November 4, 1999.
    I and many other people.
    That would be a good start.
    A decent answer about the records of his daily activities while in the Illinois Senate should be provided.
    Obviously you know he is hiding something or you would not be getting

  14. withappens Says:

    We’re not upset. We’re baffled. I’m not sure I understand why you think he hasn’t been honest. If he hasn’t released his records of his whereabouts EVERY day he was in the Illinois Senate, perhaps it’s because A) nobody has asked because they don’t see the relevance or B) he doesn’t have them. What do you think he’s hiding, I’m not clear on that. Do you have an actual accusation here? Other than the drugs thing you keep bringing up?

    Citizenwells, I hereby demand that you disclose to me the records of your whereabouts for EVERY day of your previous job. I’d like your calendar, including whereabouts, who you met and for what reasons, and I’d like all the email you sent or received, please. Oh, and your tax returns for 2007. We’ll continue the thread after you’ve provided that.

    Do you honestly believe Obama supporters (I can’t necessarily count Scott in our number, he hasn’t said he’s an Obama supporer… just disagreeing with your logic doesn’t make him one) know something, or fear something, which the press doesn’t know, or can’t find? Absurd. All you have to do is make a wild accusation and it becomes news (eg the Obama the Muslim meme).

  15. citizenwells Says:

    Well, I must say, I must be on to something. I can tell by the heightened level of response I am receiving and the personal attacks. If you read all of my comments on other blogs, and read my blog, you will find that I have been consistent. I called Sinclair’s claims allegations, and have been a skeptic. I also have stated that I hope the allegations are false.
    I am receiving many hostile personal attacks from Obama supporters. I understand being pasionate in support, but those that engage in personal attacks actually hurt their cause. It cause a loss of credibility issues and raises more questions.
    I am now wondering how many of the personal attacks are coming from those directly involved in the Obama campaign.
    I am not a criminal.
    I am not a Hillary supporter.
    I have no hidden agenda.
    I am not a racist.
    I am an American.
    I am concerned.
    I do have legitimate questions.
    Remember, some of the questions I am asking have been asked
    by Tim Russert, The Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times and others.
    Now I have to question those attacking Larry Sinclair. Do you see what
    I mean. There is no place for personal attacks.

  16. citizenwells Says:

    Pardon the typo.
    I am a lousy typist.

  17. citizenwells Says:

    By the way, I am not running for president but I do have records
    in my appointment book going well back into the 90’s.

  18. withappens Says:

    Um… could you cite one of these personal attacks? I’m just calling your comments into question. Also… still no allegation from you. What is it exactly you think he’s done wrong? Be specific.

  19. citizenwells Says:

    I was not implying you were making the personal attacks.
    You have been trying to divert attention from the basic premise
    of my arguments. That is, Obama has been at best elusive and
    at worst, has outright lied. On some of the other blogs, real personal
    attacks have occurred. This is happening to others as well.
    If Obama has nothing to hide, he will provide better records and
    answer questions.
    Let me give you a good example:
    I believe the date was March 28, 2008.
    Obama was interviewed on the view. Much to my amazement,
    they asked Obama about his comdemnation of Don Imus on
    April 11, 2007 and the fact that he only just recently denounced
    the comments of Jeremiah Wright.
    Three things occurred.
    First, Obama went into a long Soliloquy.
    Second, Obama never answered the question.
    Third, Obama was not pressed to answer the question.
    Obama is a master of eloquent speech and taking a question with
    negative connotations and turning it into postive spin.
    That makes him a great orator but not a great leader.

  20. withappens Says:

    Your objection is that Obama didn’t fully answer a question he was asked on The View?? Have you ever heard politicians speak? Perhaps if you want hard-hitting journalism, you should watch something other than The View.

    Sounds to me like you were already decided against him and have been looking for material to make your case. And I’m sorry, but the case isn’t made. As I said, you don’t need to apologize for not liking him. It doesn’t necessarily make you a racist. But you can’t hold it against him because he doesn’t want to chat about Wright on The View. Of course he doesn’t… any more than McCain wants to talk about his “bomb Iran” song, or Hillary wants to talk about the reality of the delegate math.

  21. citizenwells Says:

    My friend,
    I don’t criticize him for not wanting to chat.
    That is all he does!
    I believe that I stated that was just a recent example.
    The problem is, it represents his consistent posture.
    I saw the following quotes on another blog posted by
    Squibster and they are worth repeating:

    Bertrand Russell (Principles of Social Reconstruction):
    Men fear thought more than they fear anything else on earth — more than
    ruin, more even than death. Thought is subversive and revolutionary,
    destructive and terrible; thought is merciless to privilege,
    established institutions, and comfortable habits; thought is anarchic
    and lawless, indifferent to authority, careless of the well-tried
    wisdom of the ages …
    But if thought is to become the possession of many, not the privilege
    of the few, we must have done with fear. It is fear that holds men back
    — fear lest their cherished beliefs should prove delusions, fear lest
    the institutions by which they live should prove harmful, fear lest
    they themselves should prove less worthy of respect than they have
    supposed themselves to be.
    George Orwell: During times of universal deceit, telling the truth
    becomes a revolutionary act.
    Gore Vidal : ‘Conspiracy stuff’ is now shorthand for unspeakable truth.
    Plato: “Strange times are these in which we live when old and young are
    taught in falsehoods school. And the person that dares to tell the
    truth is called at once a lunatic and fool.”
    Arthur Schopenhauer, German philosopher: “All truth passes through
    three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Secondly, it is violently
    opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.”
    Daniel Webster: “There is nothing so powerful as truth – and often
    nothing so strange.”
    Thomas Jefferson: “It is error alone which needs the support of
    government. Truth can stand by itself.”
    Margaret Mead, American anthropologist: “Never doubt that a small group
    of committed, thoughtful citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s
    the only thing that ever has.”
    Thomas Paine: “Moderation in temper is always a virtue; but moderation
    in principle is always a vice.”

  22. withappens Says:

    I still don’t see a specific accusation, although those are some nice quotes.

  23. citizenwells Says:

    I am not making accusations.
    There are plenty of accusations out there.
    I am seeking the truth.
    I will post the facts and the truth no matter which
    way it goes.
    As I have repeatedly stated, I hope that the allegations
    against Obama are false.

  24. withappens Says:

    Again… not clear on what the allegations or accusations are. If they are “out there”, could you please cite at least one? I’m curious because I do support Obama.

  25. withappens Says:

    Note… please be specific.

  26. citizenwells Says:

    I will provide a few.
    These are not my allegations!!!!!!!
    1. Obama stated that he did not hear the hate speeches of Jeremiah
    Wright and Obama has acted as if he was unaware of the pattern of
    comments from pastor Wright. This is a lie and is corroborated by
    multiple major media articles.

    2. He effectively told a lie when he commented about the remarks of
    Don Imus in April 11, 2007. He indicated he would not tolerate such
    behaviour. The comments that Imus made were very tame compared
    to the ongoing comments from Wright, not to mention Farrakhan.
    It is further documented by the NY Times that Obama and Wright
    knew this was a problem early in 2007.

    3. Larry Sinclair has alleged a drug and gay sex encounter multiple
    times between November 3-8 1999. Obama was absent from the
    Illinois Senate on November 4, 1999. Obama has pointed the finger
    at Clinton to supply records, yet many in the media have pointed
    out the hypocrisy of Obama not being more cooperative in
    supplying records. (I have read his interviews and his answers. Don’t
    even begin to repeat the comments I get on blogs. He had to have
    had other records aside from the official ones. If he didn’t, then he
    is one of the most incompetent people I have heard about. I would
    never accuse him of not being clever.)
    There are records out there somewhere of where he was when not
    in the senate.

    4. Obama lied about contribution amounts from Rezko.
    Did Obama Lie? I don’t know if lie is the right word.
    Obama did state the wrong amount that he received from Rezko.

    5. Obama has been less than honest about his connections with
    big oil companies.

    There are more allegations out there and many statements from
    Obama there are questionable. The ones above are some of the
    more prominent ones.

    What concerns me personally the most, is a pattern of deception,
    misrepresentation and evasiveness.

    Why am I spending the time on this?
    Because I care.
    I already knew a lot about Hillary and McCain.

    If I had been running for office, I would have presented records
    as early as possible. I am not running for office, but I can supply
    fairly complete records going back many years. Anyone connected
    to traditional business or law firms has to have good records.
    What Obama was doing in 1999, 2000, 2001, etc is important,
    especially when allegations are made.

    Once again, I did not make those allegations.
    I want the truth and the American public deserves it.

  27. citizenwells Says:

    Obligatory older guy comment:
    I had my first grandchild last year.
    I know this sounds corny, but the decisions we make will affect us,
    our children’s children and so on.
    Just like the “greatest generation”, that I have so much respect for,
    fought and died to save the world, we all have an obligation
    to protect the world. One person, one vote, one action can
    make a difference.

  28. withappens Says:

    If they are not your allegations, I suggest you stop making them, or point to a valid news source. And perhaps you should identify them not simply as allegations, but rather, as debunked allegations: .

    The act of listing these kinds of unsubstantiated (or often debunked) accusations, while taking no responsibility for them, is right out of the Rove and Fox News playbook. This sort of “I don’t know if it’s true, but I heard blah blah blah” crap is better left in junior high school where it belongs. But it isn’t journalism, it isn’t news, and it isn’t honorable.

    Shame on you. If you’re an “older guy” you should certainly know better than that. And for the record, one of the reasons I’m such a supporter of Obama is that I want my brand new first child to have a worthy model as the first president he’ll ever know.

  29. citizenwells Says:

    Here come the personal attacks again.
    This just adds fuel to the fire. The more I see Obama supporters
    getting defensive about questions being asked, the more convinced
    I am Obama is hiding something.
    Did you read my comment?
    “These are not my allegations!!!!!!!”
    “Once again, I did not make those allegations”
    You asked for allegations. I gave them to you.
    What do you want?
    The press is already giving Obama a free ride.
    If something has been debunked, show me the evidence.
    Show me the records.

  30. withappens Says:

    That wasn’t a personal attack. A personal attack would be if I called you a shallow-minded, stupid, right-wing robot with no ability to discern the difference between propaganda attack-tactics and actual journalism. But that’s not what I’m calling you, so don’t feel as though you’ve been attacked.

    See how that works? Even as I disavow the attack, in some sense, it is still made. Same thing as when you say “these are not my allegations”. Take some responsibility.

  31. citizenwells Says:

    My statements, my responses and my blog stand on their own.
    I have used precise language, called facts, facts and allegations, allegations.
    Best wishes.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: