The right-wingers commenting on this and other OC blogs (Jubal &Â d’Anconia to name two) have been crying about the “leftosphere” attacks on the McPalin ticket. One example Jubal (a.k.a. Matt Cunningham Editor of Red County/OC blog) had this to say about Bill Spaulding’s recent post about the Mayor of Hooterville.
Gracias, Bill. Every time someone in the Leftosphere spouts off with a petty personal slimming like that, itâ€™s like an in-kind contribution to the McCain-Palin campaign. Maybe you guys will figure that out by Election Day.
Um Jubal, it is the height of ridiculous stupidity to assert that attacking the failings ofÂ the McPalinÂ campaign or the candidates themselves as an in-kind contribution to that campaign. Bloggers have their jobs, and campaigns have theirs. It is not our role to only regurgitate the talking points of our favored campaign. Part of our role, if not the main part, it to go where the campaigns cannot go, to highlight the contrasts and hypocrisy that they cannot. Our job, like it or not, is to throw the BS the Republican lemmings are shoveling back at them.
Yes, both the liberal and conservative blogs we will extol the virtues of our favorite candidates as they are fed to us by the campaigns. Then we will go on to feed our readers the red meat that the mainstream media will not. We know that the stories and opinions expressed onÂ our blogs are not going to change the minds of our readers. What we can hope for is that the mainstream media pick up on some of the points we make and ask the questions of the candidates and campaigns that we are all screaming at our TV’s, newspapers,Â and computer screens to be asked.
This point was stated quite well by Kos on the Daily Kos today:
Let me get this straight — if we all sat around and talking about how great Obama’s speech was, then things would be much better for him? Really? People believe this tripe? I’ll give Sullivan a pass. He was a winger not too long ago, so he hasn’t seen, first hand like many of us have, just how effective “ignoring the other side” has worked. Just ask Kerry and the Swift Boat Vets.
I was going to launch into an extensive refutation of that ridiculous notion, but thereisnospoon responds perfectly:
The Obama campaign has been successful largely because of its inspiring “new brand of politics”. Â Unfortunately, as Bill Clinton might note, that makes it somewhat difficult for the Obama campaign to get quite as nasty with the opposition as it might need to. Â But that’s OK–because that can be our job.
It’s our job to push memes the campaign can’t. Â It’s our job to focus on Republican chicanery that would waste the time of an Obama campaign that needs to be focusing its messaging on core economic issues. Â By talking about McCain’s egregious lies and horrible personal ethics, we can help push the press to cover stories that the Obama campaign can’t seriously push themselves.
Ours is an important role to play. Â I would argue, in fact, that we harm both ourselves as independent analysts and the campaign itself by simply being extended mouthpieces for the Obama campaign. Â Everyone has a role to play: ours is to play hardball, to hit where it hurts, and to force the traditional media to cover what it might be uncomfortable covering otherwise.
To all the concerned people emailing me about “being played”, don’t waste your time. I’m not about to revert to writing puff pieces about Obama thinking that his magic “new politics” bullshit will carry us to victory. He may or may not believe that crap, but I don’t. We’re going to win this thing the way campaigns are won — by playing hardball. Politics is a blood sport. Republicans understand this and never flinch from flinging the shit. We won’t win until we learn to fight back in kind. And I’m more than happy to get down in the mud with our friends on the Right so Obama doesn’t have to.
Recent history vindicates the “tough and aggressive” path. We went toe to toe against Rove and his machine in 2006, and our math beat his. I have no doubt we’re in for a two-peat this year, and it’ll happen because we won’t back off from exposing the GOP for the den of lies and corruption it has become.