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Oct 30, 2008

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Spag

I don't believe that is the equation, rather it is more along the lines of "let's see who Democrats are hanging around with now that they don't want you to know about". Nobody seriously believes that Hagan is an atheist and she was she would have big problems anyhow that she could thank her Democratic friends for.

Article 6, Section 8 the NC Constitution prohibits atheists from being elected. This is surely unconstitutional under the US Constitution, but it does beg the question why after all these decades of Democrat rule, the Democrats never tried to amend the state Constitution to remove that provision?

I'm sure somehow this will be the Republican's fault.

Roch101

"rather it is more along the lines of "let's see who Democrats are hanging around with now that they don't want you to know about". " -- Spag

Certainly. That's why Dole had to fake Hagan's voice saying something Hagan didn't say -- how else could she tell us who Hagan has been palling around with?

Thomas

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/6084678.html

"23 percent of Texans are convinced that Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama is a Muslim"

"5 to 10 percent of Americans still believe Obama is a Muslim"

Do you really think nobody believes Hagan is an athiest? After hearing it in Liddy's commercial?

That IS the equation.

Joe Killian

I understand why Hagan made the ad and it was probably a good strategy but I did have to think: "Way to make the wrong argument, Kay."

The correct argument when someone says Obama is an Arab or a Muslim would be, as Colin Powell recently said on Meet The Press -- "He's not...but if he was, why would it matter? This is America. People are allowed to believe in whatever God they like. Is their having a different religion enough to lose your vote?"

I'd love Hagan to have said: "Dole knows I'm a Christian. It was wrong for her to imply otherwise. But I'm not ashamed of atheists contributing to my campaign or supporting me. They're as entitled to their religious beliefs as anyone. If I'm elected, I'll be EVERYONE'S senator -- not just the senator of those who share my religion."

But, this isn't the West Wing...

Jeffrey Sykes

"That's why Dole had to fake Hagan's voice saying something Hagan didn't say -- how else could she tell us who Hagan has been palling around with?" @Roch

Lost on you all is the fact that it is not a fake voice, but the voice of the Godless PAC president giving a speech.

Carry on.

Ged

CNN's Campbell Brown weighs in on Dole's misleading ad. Her commentary is spot on. Check out the video at Huffington Post.

Ged

Jeffrey, what is lost on *you* is that the "voice" was played while a picture of Hagan, not the president of Godless PAC was being shown on the screen. The intention was obvious and deceptive. Own up to it.

Roch101

"Lost on you all is the fact that it is not a fake voice, but the voice of the Godless PAC president giving a speech."

Where did you get that from? It's not on the ad. I cannot believe you are actually defending this. You have always seemed fair minded to me, Jeff. Don't sacrifice your integrity defending a lying politician, it's not worth it.

Jeffrey Sykes

Not lost on me at all and has been done thousands of times in the past. Just a little too effective, thus necessitating the howl from the left.

Nothing new there.

Maybe Hagan should have thought about that before she trotted out the ruby red slippers and Dorothy and Toto.

Jeffrey Sykes

"Don't sacrifice your integrity defending a lying politician, it's not worth it. "

Roch: Do some research. I'm still entitled to my opinion, at least for know.

justcorbly

Dole's despicable ad is a blatant attempt to stir up what's left of her base in the state. It's the same kind of guilt by association rap that McCain has used against Obama. Hagan was never going to get the votes of people with whom this kind of stuff resonates. But Dole stands to lose a lot of votes from people who don't want their senator pulling off this crap. Hagan needs to follow through with her ads, and not start lecturing people about the rights of atheists.

RBM

Spag:"let's see who Democrats are hanging around with now that they don't want you to know about"

The presumption is an atheist is somehow undesirable.

Are atheist's liberal or conservative ?

I omitted anything in between intentionally.

Jeffrey Sykes

You know, the ad is ugly. I'll own up to that. Much like the Jeremiah Wright ad in the spring. But what I react to is the stream of hate speech from left-leaning bloggers and commenters crying about the shock and awe that a politician would have the audacity to throw the smack down on an opponent like this. Leftist have been painting Republicans as every sort of fascist pig, moronic Bible thumping backwards racist neanderthal for the past 18-months, linking any and every business association, stock holding, investment and lobbyist contribution as an acquiescence by the politician to the most extreme aspects of the other party.

Ed makes a post just about every Sunday at 11 a.m. mocking some off the wall aspect of organized Christianity, and any number of you jump in with one liners casting aspersion on the beliefs of others, and that's your right and fine by me, but don't turn around and cry about somebody else playing hardball with religion in the context of a political campaign.

I'm more against Hagan as a senator due to her role in the stifling of debate and dissent in the NC Senate over the last decade and her incessant raising of taxes to balance budgets than I am about her attending a fundraiser in Massachusetts with an atheist.

Ed Cone

"Ed makes a post just about every Sunday at 11 a.m. mocking some off the wall aspect of organized Christianity."

That's a pretty hateful lie there, Jeff.

"...the stream of hate speech from left-leaning bloggers and commenters crying about the shock and awe that a politician would have the audacity to throw the smack down on an opponent like this."

Can you point to some of that in this thread, or the previous thread on this topic?

Jeffrey Sykes

A lie? I've read this blog for more than three years. Don't make me bust out the metrics.

I know its your blog and I enjoy reading it but if we're gonna own up to stuff, let's own up to stuff. Otherwise its all just noise.


Tony Wilkins

Roch, be specific and answer the question of "what lie"? Personally, I would have composed the ad differently but I still want to know what is a lie in the ad. I've never had a political ad give me cold chills but that one did (well maybe one of the Palin ads but not in the same way). I think Kay is angry at the fact she has to explain accepting money from Kaplan. She got her "campaign" ass kicked.
Roch, you even stated on my blog: "It was a stupid move by Hagan, only because it would be used against her like this. All people will have to hear is “Godless” and that will be enough for the intended effect."
Did you not think this would come out at sometime in the campaign?
Before you say it- I am not defending the layout of the ad. But I do agree that certain information in the ad needed to be made public.

Beau D. Jackson

"5 to 10 percent of Americans still believe Obama is a Muslim"

Do you really think nobody believes Hagan is an athiest? After hearing it in Liddy's commercial?

That IS the equation.

You mean he's not! Hmmmm jury might still be out on that one. Anyway, I don't think the suggestion was that Kay Hagan was an athiest, but rather, she likes the color of athiest's money, which suggests she's open for discussion with anybody if there's a buck in it for her!
Beau

justcorbly

1. Off-the-wall aspects of anything merit mockery, even religion. No one deserves immunity from criticism of their social and political opinions and actions simply because they claim both are rooted in their faith. It's been my experience that more people use their faith to validate pre-existing opinions that allow their faith to shape new opinions.

2. If A says B is publishing lies and hate speech, the evidence needs to come from A.

3. Perhaps apropos of this, at least indicative of how we look at things differently is this: An Austin paper today posts a story about a local woman, aged 109, who is the daughter of a man born into slavery. She voted for Obama. In fact, she's been voting for Democrats since FDR, even paying the poll tax that Texas forced on African-Americans. The piece is all about the pride felt by this woman's family for their aging matriarch. Yet, the comments section is overflowing with vile rants from people arguing that the woman is racist because she only voted for Obama because he, too, is black, ignoring the fact that she's always voted blue. Then there are the comments from people who read the article as rubbing their white noses in slavery: None of us alive today are responsible for slavery! Why are you punishing us about it? (Apparently, in Texas, acknowledging that real people are descended from real slaves is considered punishing.)

Now, maybe these people are just alcohol-infused failures, or whatever. Or maybe they really do see the world that way. It's sad, either way.

Ed Cone

Off the wall aspects of things may "deserve" to be mocked, JC, but I don't recall mocking Christianity, and it's a nasty lie to say I do it on a regular basis.

Jeffrey Sykes

For the record, I am not accusing anyone of being anti-anything. I am commenting on my observations as a regular reader of this blog. It is my perspective and I stand by it.

Second:

"Can you point to some of that in this thread, or the previous thread on this topic?"

In the vacuum of perspective that is a blog comment, my reference to "bloggers and blog commenters" was an expression of experience mostly on other publishing sources and threads at KOS, BlueNC, News-Record, etc.

Roch101

"Just a little too effective, thus necessitating the howl from the left."

No need to reflect or self-examine, that the other side objects is the only evidence needed of the tactic's merits. This will soon be reconsidered and found to be mindless, shallow, and a huge mistake.

Roch101

"I'm still entitled to my opinion, at least for know." -- Jeff

Of course you are. That your opinion is that Dole's ad is defensible is a detriment to your integrity -- my opinion.

Spag

Ed just quotes Krugman who does the bashing for him.

The only thing controversial about this ad is the voiceover at the end. But that is clearly in the eye of the beholder. I don't think anyone seriously believes that was Hagan's voice or intended to be portrayed as Hagan's voice, but it makes for good spin to counteract the real point of the ad.

What this comes down to is once again, a Democrat wanted to keep hidden those people who he/she associates with. Whether atheism is good or bad isn't the question. Obviously, a lot of people in North Carolina would have problems with that. I am not one of them in terms of face value. But if Hagan or any other politician associates with people who are deemed controversial, then maybe they shouldn't associate with those people. Crying foul when the association is exposed is whining and dishonesty of the highest order. The voters have a right to know so they can decide for themselves whether it bears on their decision. Otherwise, it looks like the candidate doesn't want the voter to know because they know that a lot of voters will not like it. Witness Mr. Obama and the coincidence of all of his far-Left friends that for some reason he associates with even though he claims he doesn't agree with them. (Really? Then what is so appealing about people with such extreme views- and so many of them?) Fine, let the voters know about it and let them decide if they believe him or not.

These are legitimate issues, Democrats don't like them because they usually affect them far worse because they tend to associate with or have supporters from groups of people that are considered fringe or extreme. Republican's do too, but it never seems to be at the same level nor do they cry "foul!" as often. Why is it that so many out of the mainstream groups support Democrats? Perhaps because they believe Democrats will be more sympathetic to them. That is the issue the Dole ad raises and it is a legitimate question as to whether the candidate is sympathetic to a particular group and what the group expects from that candidate.

Roch101

"Roch, be specific and answer the question of "what lie"? -- Tony

I'm sorry, we are asking questions of each other? Sure. I like the back and forth and I'll be happy to give you an answer as soon as you answer the question I've asked of you and that has gone unanswered four times on this blog:

"You keep insisting Obama is not black. I'm not sure what point you are trying to make, but I am curious, when do you recognize someone as black? When they refer to themselves that way or do you have your own criteria? If the latter, please share."

Spag

Roch, do you know what the word "integrity" means? You misapply it here unless of course you mean that anyone who doesn't judge the ad the same way you do must therefore lack a rigid set of principles.

Kind of sounds like the religious right that you don't care too much for.

justcorbly

Off the wall aspects of things may "deserve" to be mocked, JC, but I don't recall mocking Christianity...

No, you haven't, Ed, and I'm sorry if anyone read that comment to mean you did.

Roch101

Oh, thanks for educating me, Sam.

Tony Wilkins

Roch, I just answered you to the best of my knowledge at the original post.
Your turn, where is the lie?

cm

I wonder how my atheist friends feel about the "don't vote for Kay Hagan because she's an atheist" argument?

I wonder how my Muslim friends feel about about the "don't vote for Obama because he's a Muslim" argument?

Personally, I feel hurt for my friends when I hear that kind of reasoning, and I have a negative reaction to whomever is putting it out there. It's just wrong.

And as both a Jesus follower and FOE (friend of Ed), I am offended and angered by the suggestion that he mocks Christianity. Rubbish. Period.

Fred Gregory

Spag you are soooo right. This is a quintessential case of whining and dishonesty. The lawsuit is a STUNT. And yes ,all you apostates, there is a Basnight.

Spag

That lawsuit is going NOWHERE because it contains no false statements. The bit at the end with the "there is no God" is also not actionable because the interpretation is subjective and therefore protected by the First Amendment. That is before we even get to the standard in New York Times v. Sullivan for public figures.

Jeffrey Sykes

Edward sent me a childish email stating:

"Back it up with evidence, or shut up."

So I will duly spend the weekend combing the archives herein to aggregate links that I believe will show Ed Cone has routinely posted links on Sundays that cast aspersion on Christianity, evangelical politicians and others of a social conservative bent.

I have no underlying assumptions about why he has done these things, but I am certain that I can back it up with evidence.

Have a nice weekend.

Jeffrey Sykes

No need to reflect or self-examine, that the other side objects is the only evidence needed of the tactic's merits. This will soon be reconsidered and found to be mindless, shallow, and a huge mistake.

Roch: What is there to "reflect or self-examine" upon?

Hagan attended a fundraiser hosted by a founder of the group Godless Americans PAC.

THE GAPAC has stated goals to remove the reference to God from the pledge and Christmas as a federal holiday in addition to supporting the remove of "In God We Trust" from US currency.

Elizabeth Dole made an ad that pointed out the fact that Hagan attended the fundraiser.

She closed the ad with an image of Hagan and an audio clip from the leader of the GAPAC stating her belief that "There is no God."

If Hagan took money from a member of the GAPAC then a reasonable person could come to the conclusion that she might later be beholden to support the group's goals at a later time.

I really would hate to see some of you in battle if you melt this easily under a direct frontal assault.

Joe Killian

Jeff:

Would you agree that Elizabeth Dole might later be beholden to support the goals of any group to which any of the individuals who donated to her belong? That's a dangerous chest to open. Some of the people I know personally -- hell that I'm related to -- are supporting Dole and are members of groups that would be mighty embarrassing to her.

If we're really going to lower the outrage standard to "think about the groups the people donating belong to!" it's going to get ridiculous quickly.

If there's a Klansman out there who donated to Dole's campaign and Hagan makes an ad about it, I'll be the first one to call it ludicrous.

Spag

Jeffrey, the problem that Roch and others have is that the public was not supposed to find out about this. Hagan pleads ignorance even though as Tony has pointed out- Tony himself knew about the fundraiser and Hagan's planned attendance there more than a week before it even happened. In fact, Tony wrote about it along with the mention of the Godless PAC.

Joe Guarino wrote of the risks of Hagan attending the fundraiser on September 3rd, again BEFORE Hagan attended the fundraiser:

"This is a pretty good indication of Ms. Hagan's worldview, and of her temperamental inclination with respect to certain public policy issues. These are the types of folks with whom she would choose to associate, and from whom she would accept support."

Exactly the point that is now being raised. Yet Hagan went anyway and now pretends she didn't know anything about it. So what does that say about her judgment?

Utter malarkey.

In response to Tony's post back on August 28th (BEFORE Hagan attended the fundraiser), Roch wrote:

"It was a stupid move by Hagan, only because it would be used against her like this. All people will have to hear is “Godless” and that will be enough for the intended effect. Gidley is wrong however that most North Carolinians would be uncomfortable having an atheist in their homes. Most North Carolinians are not that narrow minded."

Yeah, Roch. Guess what happened? And if the last part of your paragraph is true, why are you complaining?

The liberals crying here are upset that one of their own got caught somewhere that won't be too popular with North Carolina voters- right or wrong.

Which again brings me back to my point- if you don't want to be attacked for associating with people who are out of the mainstream, then don't associate with them.

It is clear the Hagan knew what she was doing chasing after money from unpopular sources. Trying to turn this on Dole is a thing of marvel.

Spag

Joe, if Dole knowingly walked into that den and solicited Klan money, that would be a valid issue to raise. Hagan is pleading ignorance here but the facts clearly demonstrate otherwise.

justcorbly

First: Ed makes a post just about every Sunday at 11 a.m. mocking some off the wall aspect of organized Christianity

Second: I will duly spend the weekend combing the archives herein to aggregate links that I believe will show Ed Cone has routinely posted links on Sundays that cast aspersion on Christianity, evangelical politicians and others of a social conservative bent.

The dimensions of the attack seem to have expanded. Initially, you charge that Ed spends his Sunday mornings mocking "organzied Christianity." However, when challenged to produce the evidence, you expand the terrain for your seardh to include "evangelical politicians and others of a social conservative bent."

You do realize that you are asserting that "evangelical politicians and others of a social conservative bent" are part and parcel of "organized Christianity" and are immune from criticism, mocking or otherwise.

I've often thought this was the real platform of many rights. Thank you for confirming it. I did not know any politician claiming a social conservative and evangelical label is always right and that I am always wrong.

cm

"Which again brings me back to my point- if you don't want to be attacked for associating with people who are out of the mainstream, then don't associate with them."

Spag, I feed homeless people with everything from tongue-speaking holy-rolling Pentecostals to anarchists and atheists. I'd say that most of us are out of the mainstream in one way or another. But we all share a common goal. We believe that everyone should have enough to eat. I'd love to vote for a candidate who's willing and able to represent all of us, without judging any of us. Want to attack me?

justcorbly

THE GAPAC has stated goals to remove the reference to God from the pledge and Christmas as a federal holiday in addition to supporting the remove of "In God We Trust" from US currency.

And the problem with that is... what?

Are you asserting that anyone's sincere faith would be challenged by any of those actions? Do you know people whose faith depends on the Pledge of Allegiance? If so, what did people do before the pledge was written in the 1950's? Will Christians fall into heathenism if "In God We Trust" is stricken from the currency and federal employees have to take leave on Christmas, as they already do on Jewish holidays and the Eids?

How feeble is a faith that depends on government trivia for its sustenance. The country is full of Christians who can't see that any of that matters.

Spag

Cara, you aren't associating with those people in a political context. I am not even passing judgment on Hagan or the group. I'm simply saying that a lot of people in this state and elsewhere would look down on her taking money from people in that group. She knew that, and did it anyway. Instead of taking the position that you are- and that others have suggested- by saying "yes I took their money because they have a right to be represented as well" she tried to run from it. This makes it look like she was trying to hide the association out of fear that it wouldn't be popular with voters. That is dishonest and cowardly in my book. If she is proud of the association as you are of yours- then why not come out and say it?

We know the answer- because it would hurt her in the election and be used against her just as it is now. So it comes back to the same statement, if you don't want to be criticized for associating with a group of people with unpopular positions, then don't associate with them. Otherwise, she should spend more time justifying what she did instead of getting defensive and playing dumb. This is right up there with the Obama "Ayers was a terrorist when I was eight". Yes, but when you were older and knew he was a terrorist back when you were a kid, you still chose to associate with him. Now own the association or quit whining when people criticize you for it.

Voters have a right to know who their elected officials hang around with and where they get their money so the voter can decide whether the voter wants to associate with that candidate or not. Completely fair position for the voter to take, and it's completely dishonest when a candidate tries to hide these things.

Spag

Cara, you aren't associating with those people in a political context. I am not even passing judgment on Hagan or the group. I'm simply saying that a lot of people in this state and elsewhere would look down on her taking money from people in that group. She knew that, and did it anyway. Instead of taking the position that you are- and that others have suggested- by saying "yes I took their money because they have a right to be represented as well" she tried to run from it. This makes it look like she was trying to hide the association out of fear that it wouldn't be popular with voters. That is dishonest and cowardly in my book. If she is proud of the association as you are of yours- then why not come out and say it?

We know the answer- because it would hurt her in the election and be used against her just as it is now. So it comes back to the same statement, if you don't want to be criticized for associating with a group of people with unpopular positions, then don't associate with them. Otherwise, she should spend more time justifying what she did instead of getting defensive and playing dumb. This is right up there with the Obama "Ayers was a terrorist when I was eight". Yes, but when you were older and knew he was a terrorist back when you were a kid, you still chose to associate with him. Now own the association or quit whining when people criticize you for it.

Voters have a right to know who their elected officials hang around with and where they get their money so the voter can decide whether the voter wants to associate with that candidate or not. Completely fair position for the voter to take, and it's completely dishonest when a candidate tries to hide these things.

cm

so we're not going to fight? well, ok, i think i'm going to bed, then. i'm sleepy. 'night, y'all. ;)

Spag

Nothing to fight about.

Jeffrey Sykes

Corbly: My point in the original comment was not to paint Ed Cone in any certain light, but to express my observation that routinely here on this blog we question or criticize or mock the faith of others in a political context and thus that I think it is a fallacy to howl about Dole's ad.

The strength of Ed's response in calling me hateful and a liar, and later telling me to shut up, is what has brought us to this point. It is a larger symptom of what leftists are doing in stifling debate by throwing out "hate" at the drop of a hat. If we keep crying wolf maybe we won't recognize real hate when it comes along.

My intention in joining this thread was not to discuss religion, but to express my opposition to one side of the political debate claiming the mantle of virginal innocence in political invective.

eric

Sam's apologia for Dole's repugnant ad rests on the false premise that Hagan "wanted to keep hidden those people who [...]she associates with". In fact, there was nothing "hidden" about the campaign event, and the contribution in question was reported just like every other campaign contribution.

The Dole people chose to make an issue out of this one event, and this one contribution (not, as the ad falsely says, from GAPAC, but from an individual who is, among other things, a member of that group's board) for one reason only: because they wanted to give the impression that Hagan "pals around" with, and may share the views of, atheists.

The ad plays on, and attempts to stoke, crude bigotry. To suggest, as Sam does, that it is all Hagan's fault for "associating with people who are out of the mainstream" is outrageous.

That said, I can't really fault Sam for taking that view, given Hagan's own very troubling response, which does give the impression that she agrees there is something embarrassing about being supported by an outspoken atheist. I'm enough of a realist to understand why she is responding as she is. But the response is one more reminder of why I have long since given up looking to the Democrats for anything remotely like principled leadership for radical-democratic social change.

Anyway, I still agree with Sam that the lawsuit is little more than a stunt. Note that what Hagan's lawyers filed was not actually a complaint initiating a suit, but merely a request for additional time in which to do so. Plaintiff's normally do that when they are running up against the statute of limitations. That's not the case here, and I don't see any good legal reason for this application, other than as a way to give the appearance of filing suit without actually doing so. The deadline that the court gave is November 19th -- two weeks after the election. I will be very much surprised if a complaint is really filed.

Joe Killian

I've never wanted to hug Cara more than I do right now.

Graham Shevlin

"Leftist have been painting Republicans as every sort of fascist pig, moronic Bible thumping backwards racist neanderthal for the past 18-months, linking any and every business association, stock holding, investment and lobbyist contribution as an acquiescence by the politician to the most extreme aspects of the other party."
Well, Jeffrey, you almost had me crying tears of sympathy into my cup of tea...until I started remembering all of the times after 9/11 that my views and opinions, and the views and opinions of many of my fellow progressives were dismissed as "Godless", "Un-American", "Liberal", "Terrorist-loving" etc. etc. by people in the media, talk radio, and (in my own personal case) by several work colleagues who, like many people in the modern USA, appeared to not understand that dissent is not disloyalty.
I put away my handkerchief.
I look forward to your researched response to Ed's comments. You might also want to tack on some research to back up your whiny-ass rant that I excerpted above.

Roch101

"Roch, I just answered you to the best of my knowledge at the original post." -- Tony

No, you didn't, Tony. Your "answer" was: "Roch, I'll answer your question with a question. Politically, is it more advantageous for Obama to be black or multiracial?"

That's not an answer, so again, you keep insisting Obama is not black. I'm not sure what point you are trying to make, but I am curious, when do you recognize someone as black? When they refer to themselves that way or do you have your own criteria? If the latter, please share.

Tony Wilkins

Quit sucking up Joe K., everyone wants to hug Cara. And if I'm not mistaken I was in line ahead of you.

Roch101

"Jeffrey, the problem that Roch and others have is that the public was not supposed to find out about this." -- Spag

Revisit when the drugs wear off. As Tony noted above, I fully expected to see this in a campaign ad. You can make your arguments without making stuff up.

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