One year later, the Memo still rankles…
Just wanted to update with this video:
This is a follow-up page to Mother of all Memos, what this blog is all about.
By now everyone knows that voters in the Democratic primary season split right down the middle, with Hillary gaining a little more than half the votes cast in the primary season. It is a whole different question as to why she is not the leader in delegate count, why the delegate allocation math is patently absurd, how the system of allocation was gamed. Was the public relations aspect of the political side of the process rigged or stage managed to disadvantage Hillary, were members of the media in on this game? Of course, they were! It only takes a random sample of any given topic or day’s coverage to show it.
Unfortunately for the party, the reality of ‘fix’, will never be accepted by Hillary’s enemies. Nor will Hillary’s supporters just ‘get over it’ any time soon. The wounds created early on went too deep with one side being simultaneously just too ingenious in methods and disingenuous in motives.
This is an election of a generation, with an almost a generational difference in the values, identities, election strategies, and rhetorical methodologies practised by the two camps.
This primary season of the Democrats is a generation-gap in reverse!
This gap is not something that will go away, specially with expressions like “don’t trust anyone below 30”.
Even as Hillary was giving ‘her speech’ and some followers of the other candidate were stubbornly rejecting Hillary with vitriol, and revival of wounds from the past.
The Washington Monthly, carries a regular feature called The Political Animal by Kevin Drum, a popular writer. Guest poster Hilzoy recently started the dialog off with a quote from the email Hillary sent her supporters, readers took it from there.
What interested us most was how quickly commenters went to the Mother of all Memos as the first inkling of trouble in this campaign. A few pertinent excerpts:
The Washington Monthly
Political Animal by Kevin Drum (Guest Hilzoy), June 05, 2008
Reader junebug (on June 5, 2008 at 12:59 PM)
The memo was stupid & offensive, though not for the reason you’re claiming. The “D-Punjab” reference was a stupid attempt to create a link between Clinton’s work on the Senate India Caucus & the offshoringof American jobs. It was offensive to Clinton, in all fairness, because it’s a gross misrepresentation of her work, but it wasn’t racist.
Reader rk (on June 5, 2008 at 1:29PM)
One of the items used to attack HRC in that memo was titled
” Gupta Said Democrats’ Stand On Outsourcing Was Poll-Year Rhetoric.”
That item refers to a quote by Vinod Gupta in March 2004 regarding policies of the Democratic party (hence the use of Democrats’ rather than Democrat’s) and has little connection to HRC. The item really makes little sense in terms of the outsourcing debate but does introduce the fact that Vinod Gupta had contributed funds to HRC’s senate campaign in 2000.
That bullet point serves only to point out that HRC got campaign contributions from Indian-Americans.
I know that the Obama campaign has used HRC’s joke as their lever for introducing and explaining the memo. That doesn’t change the product or their intent.
Reader Joe (on June 5, 2008 at 3:32 PM)
Obama’s campaign was playing off her own comment to point out her investing in, and receiving money from, Indian companies that took away American jobs. There was absolutely nothing racial about it.
Reader rk (on June 5, 2008 at 4:53 PM)
…. economic nativism aimed at generating animosity toward a specific ethnic group and to anyone perceived to be close to that specific ethnic group is racist. The D-Punjab memo wasn’t directed at outsourcing in general; its sole purpose was to link HRC to India and Indian-Americans (as Joe so ably points out).
One of the bullet points (the investment in India) was related to a company that had nothing to do with outsourcing and was for a business that couldn’t have possibly been performed by Americans (the main business is a chain of bill payment and cell phone recharging shops in India).
The memo isn’t a coherent argument regarding outsourcing. Where it does mention outsourcing no country other than India is mentioned.
The technique of linking a political opponent to a particular ethnic group and implying that such support is unseemly has a long tradition in the United States. Denying that the D-Punjab memo was an example of that technique is just silly.
Reader junebug (on June 5, 2008 at 7:54PM)
That the memo came into existence at all is due to Obama’s poor judgment on the matter,
Reader Peg got off the best line of this discussion, in our view (on June 6, 2008 at 8:25PM)
My Republican sister left her party because the religius right took over. I am leaving the Democratic party for much the same reason. Fanatics and cultists have taken charge. Good luck with that.
As we said, the Mother of all Memos keeps on giving.