Sunday, July 27, 2008

Great Fight Amidst Lampley's Bias...

Last night the national boxing rivalry between Mexico and Puerto Rico reached epic proportions with two champions - Mexico's Antonio Margarito and Puerto Rico's Miguel Cotto - putting it all on the line in Las Vegas.

What a superb fight!  This fight is the stuff legends are made from (not untarnished records Mr. Floyd Mayweather Jr.). Antonio Margarito's relentless pressure, heavy hands, granite chin and unbending will broke the mind, body and spirit of the talented and brave Miguel Cotto.

Margarito continues to cement his reputation as boxing's toughest SOB and Cotto, even in defeat, illustrates once again he has immense talent and heart, and both have increased their statures as elite fighters. Only a fighter with Margarito's unique qualities could have withstood the Puerto Rican's assault. There is no shame in Cotto's loss.

Jim Lampley's commentary, however, was shameful. As relentless as Margarito was in breaking his opponent's will, so too was Lampley's biased support of his crush, Miguel Cotto. While it is absolutely true Cotto is the superior talent, as illustrated by his crisper, more accurate punches and relative ease in navigating the ring's terrain, he is not the superior fighter.

This fact, which became increasingly evident as the rounds passed, was ignored by Lamps. His unwillingness to acknowledge the toll being exacted by Margarito on Cotto's mind and body was insulting, not only to his two partners - Steward and Kellerman, who had the "audaciousness" to question Cotto's ability to resist the unyielding pressure exserted by Margarito for 12 rounds - but to Margarito and his Pay-per-View audience.

Lampley frequently shows favoritism, which is not unique to him, as few can completely remove their preferences during live, off the cuff, analysis, but his unfiltered affection and admiration for Cotto was a distraction resulting in him diminishing the efforts of Margarito and amplifying Cotto's work - as if to persuade viewers Cotto is the better fighter and winning the fight.

Jim Lampley's emotional exit from the broadcast, partly from a colleague battling Leukemia and partly from the brutal beating his vanquished champion endured, underscored the night well. The fight required both combatants to exhibit skill, deliver and endure punishment, test their will and expose their humanity. All of which is why those who love the sweet science will remember this fight always and recall it with great emotion.


Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Charting a New Course...

Tonight Senator Barack Obama has become the Democratic Party’s presumptive nominee.  This is a historic moment.  A nation that enslaved African-Americans has now chosen its first person of color, a man of black and white heritage, to represent the nation’s Democrats in the 2008 presidential race.  Congratulations to Barack Obama and to America.


I supported Hillary Clinton on substantive points of policy and not the hopes and dreams of what American can be, because without a plan no hope, no dream, can bring about change.  Her impressive campaign is all but over, as we wait for her to formally concede to Senator Obama.  I salute her passion and devotion to America and I hope to see her on the Presidential ticket, which, with all of the heated debate, is still clearly the strongest possible ticket we can muster for the November election.


Regardless of who the vice president is to be, it is now my time, and the time for all of Hillary’s coalition, to place our collective energies and efforts fully with him.  It is now time to allow my logical mind to enter the uncomfortable position of betting on hopes and dreams.  The hopes and dreams Senator Obama so eloquently inspires us to believe in, to follow him in “charting a new course,” and to unite and win in November.  To have faith – yes we can!



Tuesday, May 13, 2008

SNL's Shameless Skit...

Where is the outrage?

On May 10 Saturday Night Live aired a skit depicting a faux- Hillary Clinton that was mildly funny until they labeled Hillary Clinton, and her supporters, as racists. That is offense in the extreme and patently false. Sure, there are some who happen to be racist or misogynistic in both coalitions, but this is not due to the campaigns themselves and to suggest otherwise is divisive and irresponsible.

Of course, one doesn't look to SNL for responsible behavior, but one would expect the news media and pundits to snap up this thoroughly baseless, hate filled, slur against, not only Hillary Clinton, but white America and the Democratic Party.  The fact that this skit has only received marginal play, and only for comic effect, indicates once again the medias love affair with Barack Obama.  

Imagine if SNL aired a skit during the Rev. Wright hub-bub, with a faux-Obama speaking to the camera and saying, "I don't support Rev. Wright's words or actions" wink- wink "nor, do I believe in any of the Reverend's racist rhetoric" wink-wink "Furthermore, black Americans love this country, as do I"  wink - wink. 

If they were to air such a skit SNL would have been skewered by every major liberal media outlet in the country, as well as all over the blogosphere.  And, rightfully so!  Where is the condemnation in defense of Hillary and her coalition?

I understand Clinton generates passionate opinions, both positive and negative, but this type of television is disgraceful and offends a huge voting block by calling them racists, and the utter lack of outrage from the news media is indicative of their own bias in this primary campaign.   


Monday, May 12, 2008

Farmer Bob (Bob Herbert reaps what he sows)...

NY Times columnist, Bob Herbert, is a farmer.  Who knew!?

For months now Farmer Bob and the Obama sympathetic media have carefully tilled the fertile liberal fields, sowed the seeds of racial politics, and now are reaping what they have sown.

His May 10th article - "Seeds of Destruction"puts forth the ridiculous position that "the Clintons" are saying, "He [Senator Obama] can't win!  Don't you understand?  He's black!  He's black!"  

That is a lie and calculated for divisive effect.  

In broad strokes, Hillary Clinton's coalition are women, white, older, working class, lower income, high school education or less.  What the media calls "Joe six pack," "the regular folks," and, at times, "dinosaurs."  In broad strokes, Barack Obama's coalition are black, younger, upper class, higher income, college educated.  What the media calls "wine drinkers," "intellectuals," "the elite," and "progressives."

Both Hillary and Barack seem to have those two broad coalitions locked down - granted, a bit of syphoning has happened, but the above is correct in the main.

Back to Farmer Bob - The Clinton message has been her coalition is made up from voters who are necessary to win a closely contested Presidential election, which 2008 is shaping up to be.  Her coalition is not the fringe, the far left, but the middle, left of center voter - a coalition that includes Reagan Democrats.  On the other hand, the Obama coalition (the far left and "egg heads") are made up of those who have always voted for the Democratic party nominee, regardless of who that candidate may be.  This can't be said for all of Clinton's coalition.  

The Reagan Democrats, those more socially conservative Democrats who vote Republican when they feel the Democratic candidate is positioned too far to the left for their sensibilities, will support Hillary based on her political position on the left spectrum.  Will the Reagan Democrats vote for Barack Obama?  Did they vote for the "progressive" Dukakis who is by all accounts less "progressive" than Senator Obama?  Maybe they will, but it doesn't seem likely, especially with the relatively moderate John McCain as the Republican candidate.  This is not a matter of race, but rather a matter of political philosophy, and Mr. Herbert does himself a disservice suggesting otherwise.  

The good farmer has claimed, "I don’t know if Senator Obama can win the White House. No one knows. But to deliberately convey the idea that most white people — or most working-class white people — are unwilling to give an African-American candidate a fair hearing in a presidential election is a slur against whites."  

I don't know if Senator Obama can win either.  If he can, indeed, change the electoral map to make up for the deficiencies he acknowledges he has in the "must have" Democratic general election states... A tall order, but he may be the one to pull it off.  Nonetheless, I believe Hillary has a better chance to win, but if Barack is the nominee, he will have my full support, and I do feel he is a better choice than McCain.  To the rest of the quote - This is patently false and at no point has this idea been put forth.  Race and gender have been playing a role in this primary from the beginning.  How could it not - the first serious black candidate for President and the first serious woman candidate for President.  Of course we are speaking of this.  However, I do find it interesting that those who are screaming loudest "to move past this," the issue of race, are the same folks who continue to bring it to the fore and are reading racial undertones into comments where there are none.  

Regarding the rest of the article -  it is more ad hominem attacks.  Nothing substantive to Hillary as a Presidential candidate, just reckless commentary from a true believer.  

(The word "out there" is if Obama doesn't win the Party's nomination, some of his supporters, many black supporters, will not support Senator Clinton - not on political or philosophical positions, but ones of spite... shame on you.  This also goes for the women who make similar claims if Hillary doesn't win - spite, race or gender is not a serious, responsible platform to choose a President.  Let us keep our heads about us and our eyes on the prize)

Friday, May 9, 2008

Hard working...

The USA Today reports the following from Hillary Clinton, who cites an Associated Press article "that found how Sen. Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me." 

Well, this is nothing new to those with eyes to see and ears to hear - not only from Clinton but also from Obama.  Race and gender have been worked positively and negatively by both campaigns - this is politics and no surprise.  At least it shouldn't come as a surprise, but the liberal networks and media at-large are acting as if the comments from Sen. Clinton, noted above, are playing or introducing the "race card."  This is absurd.

All day I have watched MSNBC twist and spin Hillary's reference to the AP article, which states the facts and can't be disputed, as an assault against Barack Obama, African Americans, and the Democratic party.  Again, this is absurd.  While I knew her comments, referencing AP, would be fodder for the political hosts, analysts, insiders, and pundits who are seemingly Senator Obama's chief cheerleaders, it is the media which has chosen to play the race card, not Senator Clinton.

It is clear to me that, while the phrasing could have been better, "hard working Americans, white Americans," is a reference to class and not race.  Since time and memorial the Democratic party has made it their business to address class and use "hard working" as short hand for issues of class and economics - the disadvantaged.  (Of course, well paid Americans of all races and all genders may take offense, as they are hard working, too)  The fine point of the AP snippet was to her base, to recent exit polls... where is the problem? 

The media onslaught misses the point and, I would suggest, does so intentionally.  Hillary Clinton's track record, The Clintons track record, is clear in their support of African Americans and all minorities.  Are her critics that obtuse?  I don't think so.

As often happens, when critics carry their arguments beyond the scope of reality and credibility, they commit offenses that are suicidal to character.  This, sadly, is the case with my channels of choice - MSNBC and CNN.  


Thursday, May 8, 2008

Self fulfilling prophecy....

What in the world is wrong with the Democratic talk show hosts, analysts and pundits?  

For all of  the talk and criticism towards the Clinton campaign, the cries for her to "gracefully bow out" and to relinquish her belief she is the best qualified candidate, because she is "damaging the Party" and that her vigorous defense of her candidacy "hurts Obama" and "provides a road map for McCain," the pundits miss the most obvious offense - their own.

While it has been clear Obama is the media's "Chosen One," I thought the cries mentioned above were sincere, even if ridiculous, to protect the Party.  I don't believe this anymore.  How could anyone believe the "good of the Party" is, or was, their motivation after watching and reading the shameless and scurrilous attacks directed at Clinton of late.  If protecting the Party is important, if uniting the Party is important, if allowing the Party to heal is important, which the pundits have submitted as paramount, how can they reconcile the political mayhem they are creating?  The answer is, they can't.

So, why the under handed tactics to dismantle a strong, persuasive candidate?  A candidate, while behind in the "metrics," is only narrowly behind and clearly close enough, winning the stalwart States the Democrats must win, to make a compelling case to the Super Delegates to cast their deciding votes for her.  Which, by the way, is playing by rules, the rules the DNC created for such a moment.  This would not be "stealing" the election from Obama.  It would be harsh, and a bitter pill to swallow, but legitimate.

Ah, that's it.  She has a legitimate case.  Her critics recognize this, but rather than allow the Party rules to play out and let the chips fall where they may, they protect their candidate, they attack Hillary to save Barack.  To prevent the stronger logical argument from prevailing they will paint her as stirring racial divides.   They will try to disfigure her, cast her as the villain, the Party pariah - "only a racist would support her."  It doesn't get any lower.

The Super Delegates will not have the stomach to choose Clinton - even though logic and reason dictate her the best choice for the general election.  They will fear the labels, they will fear the pundits, they will choose Obama, who will lead in every metric, and is a fine candidate.  The pundits will see their candidate nominated, and will rejoice in their victory, but at what cost?  At what cost... this sounds familiar.  


Thursday, May 1, 2008

With all due respect... a direct answer please

"With all due respect," Michelle Obama replies to CNN's Suzanne Malveaux, as she repeatedly refused to answer questions regarding Rev. Wright's antics [my word] and his impact of late.  Well, she did respond by referring to her husbands recent rejection of the Reverend's words and performances, but she did not offer her own opinion - she only piggybacked on his words, essentially offering a no comment and wishing to "move forward."

This tactic (I assume this is tactical) is a miscalculation by the Obama campaign.  With the skeptical eyes of the Conservatives (and some Liberals and Independents) already focused on the 20 years relationship the Obama's have/had with Rev. Wright, and the curious past comments from Michelle, to not offer her own personal opinion will lead to the Rights declaration she, and by extension, Barack, is dodging, hiding, and "doing what they need to do"  to "move forward." 

Instead of clearing up an issue, she managed to leave an opening for those who wish to question the sincerity of the Obama position by not declaring her own severing of the Rev. Wright ties. I can hear it now, "Why won't SHE divorce herself, simply and directly, from the Reverend?"  "Why won't SHE say the words?"

I concede this may seem like I'm picking nits (she said, "He [Barack] speaks for me, as well") but these types of issues are the fodder of politics and the notion this matter will go away is folly.  It is too juicy for the media and too easy for the Conservatives to let it lie.  

Michelle Obama is an intelligent woman, no question, however her political missteps or side steps continue to be a nagging political thorn to her husband.  Fortunately, for the Obama campaign, the media is, not only willing to accept her silence on this issue, but ignore Mrs. Obama's silence to begin with.  This is a mistake by Obama and CNN.  

The CNN interview may be found Here.