Israel’s Ugliest Export: Journalists as Decision Makers

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There are some exports that a country would rather do without. As far as Israel goes, the Israel Mafia would be one. The concept of a media fully mobilized on behalf of one side of the political spectrum would be another.

Senator Barack Obama owes the mainstream media (MSM) credit for a big assist in his election victory. And the U.S. media will, in turn, owe a round of applause to the Israeli media for its pioneering efforts to determine the outcome of national political debate and elections.

In the 1996 election pitting Binyamim Netanyahu against Shimon Peres, Ha’aretz‘s political reporter Orit Galili described the press as “completely mobilized for Peres.” On the eve of the elections, Peres responded to Israeli Arab criticism to Israeli bombing in southern Lebanon, “Those stupid Arabs.” Given that Peres’ chances of being elected depended on a large Arab vote in his favor, the spontaneous outburst was tantamount to political suicide. Realizing that, the large cohort of journalists present decided among themselves to kill the story and it went largely unreported. Suppressing damaging utterances of its favorites was by then already reflexive on the part of the Israeli media. When then Court President Aharon Barak told a group of reporters that the Supreme Court could not add more Sephardi justices without diluting it professional quality, the slur went virtually unreported by the mainstream media.

After Binyamin Netanyahu was elected prime minister in 1996, Maariv‘s Ron Meiberg confessed “as journalists and as opinionated people, we were never so mobilized to bring down the Prime Minister and to hold up him up for ridicule.” Those efforts included the Israeli Broadcasting National News editing almost a minute out of tape of Netanyahu speaking to Betar Jerusalem fans to make it appear that he was smiling and waving in response to chants of “Death to the Arabs,” even though those chanting were out of his hearing range.

But by then faked tapes were almost a habit with Israel’s media, including public broadcasting. Just prior to the Rabin assassination, the Israel Broadcast Authority broadcast what purported to be an initiation ceremony for a radical right-wing group. But as the Shamgar Commission investigating the assassination determined, the swearing in ceremony was entirely staged “and anyone who was there had to be aware that it was staged.” Yet the journalist responsible for filming the ceremony continued to be employed by the IBA long after the Shamgar Commission Report, and the fake clip to be shown by the IBA as an example of right-wing incitement leading up to the assassination.

What is most astounding about the Israeli media is the total lack of shame of journalists about their efforts to use their positions to determine the public debate. Veteran IBA news presenter Chaim Yavin once boasted, “Without the Israeli press, there would have been no peace process. Without the Israeli press the Intifada would not have led to Oslo.” Prior to the Gaza withdrawal, Aharon Avramovitz, one of IBA’s principal commentators, said publicly that the media must protect then prime minister Ariel Sharon like “an esrog” from the various corruption charges swirling around him.

For more than a decade, the Israeli media set the gold standard for journalists seeking not just to report the action but to be major players. But the American MSM has far outdone the “mobilized” Israeli media in this election campaign. Ever since CNN’s Christopher Matthews confessed to experiencing a tingle in his leg upon hearing Senator Barack Obama speak, the MSM has acted virtually in unison to ensure Senator Obama’s victory. The story line of an eloquent, striking black man rising from the statehouse in Springfield, Illinois to President of the United States in four years is just too irresistible.

As a consequence, the United States has now elected not only the least inexperienced president ever, but also the least vetted (despite two years on the campaign trail.) All the investigative instincts thought to characterize journalists have been as if magically stifled.

One’s thoughts turn to the realm of fiction in the search for some parallel to the Obama phenomena. In Jerzy Kosinski’s 1971 novel Being There, a middle-aged simpleton raised all his life in isolation watching TV and tending a garden, wanders outside for the first time after his benefactor’s death. Through a concatenation of chance events, he is propelled to fame and his observations on the garden and repetition of phrases from TV treated as oracular by a broad public, including the president of the United States. (Let us stipulate that Senator Obama is very bright, and bears no resemblance to Chance the Gardener.)

The MSM probably did not determine the results of the 2008 presidential election. The global economic meltdown over the last two months was a much bigger factor. But the fact that it tried so blatantly to do so, through the news stories it pursued and, more importantly, those it did not, has badly damaged another major American institution, at a time that the incumbent president and Congress already suffer from record low levels of public confidence. The United States is a weaker, less good country, as a consequence of the journalistic malfeasance.

Let us start with the sins of commission. Here the MSM treatment of Sarah Palin stands out. Governor Palin’s experience and intellectual capabilities were certainly entirely legitimate subjects. Rather than examine those subjects, the MSM snarled. For its initial profile, the New York Times found every defeated political opponent or naysayer, in Alaska, where her favorable ratings run around 84%.

Maureen Dowd sneered at Palin’s B.A. from the University of Idaho (while never mentioning Senator Biden’s graduation from the University of Delaware Law School, not exactly a national law school, in the bottom 15% of his class.) Dowd show-cased the ugly side of liberalism: its snarky contempt for those members of the lower orders – the guns and religion crowd – whose interests it claims to champion. Women who spent their entire adult lives seeking to break free from the shackles of the patriarchy suddenly rushed to print with op-eds pondering the irresponsibility of Palin serving as governor with a Downs Syndrome infant at home. (Some of those implicitly questioned the irresponsibility of bringing a “defective” child into the world at all.)

Then came the interviews with ABC’s Charles Gibson and NBC’s Katie Couric, both of whom set out with a clear agenda to make Palin look like an idiot – something, by the way, ridiculously easy for any interviewer who has prepared in advance to do. How do you think Biden would have done with an interviewer who popped a question about Article III of the Constitution or Ninth Amendment jurisprudence without telling him to what he was referring. Charles Krauthamer, who coined the term the Bush Doctrine, pointed out that he would have responded exactly what Palin did when asked by Gibson whether she supported the Bush Doctrine – i.e., ask what aspect he was talking about, since there are at least four meanings to the term. Finally, ABC edited and posted on its website, the Gibson interview in a manner that made Palin’s answers far less cogent than they actually were. And when that deceipt was revealed, ABC posted yet another misleadingly edited version.

Every mistake Palin made or evidence of a lack of substantive knowledge was taken as proof that she is congenital idiot. But Saturday Night Live had no skits on Senator Biden talking about FDR’s television speech to the nation at the outset of the Great Depression – three years before FDR was elected president and more than two decades before commercial TV. No one dwelled on Biden’s law school plagiarism or his even weirder appropriation of the biography of British Labor Party leader Neil Kinnock.

The vitriol directed at Sarah Palin has been unprecedented, with op-ed writers resorting to epithets that were once not uttered in polite society. Conservative columnist Suzanne Fields reports of a hospital conversation with a distinguished professor of English at an elite university who described Palin as a “someone beneath contempt, an ignorant vicious woman who would have been ideal for the Hitler rope lines in the Sudetenland.” What about the sunny, upbeat Palin, who has a pretty compelling life story of her own, could have produced that description? I can think of nothing about Palin that calls to mind Hitler, ym”sh, but I can well imagine the woman professor as a Soviet commissar.

(Note to American Jews, who polls showed fleeing from the Republican ticket because of Palin’s presence: Continually giving expression to your loathing of devout Christians and expressing your worries that they are busy plotting the next pogram or the imposition of a Christian theocracy, on no evidence, is a pretty fair recipe for alienating Israel’s strongest supporters in the United States and creating anti-Semites where none were previously found.)

The MSM’s greatest contribution to the Obama victory, however, had less to do with its attacks on Palin, which were so over-the-top that they triggered a backlash against the MSM. Rather it lies in its sins of omission. The MSM showed no curiosity about the tabla rasa named Barack Obama. President Harry Truman famously said of the Oval Office “the buck stops here.” So what were those 120 occasions that Obama voted “present” rather than choose a side while in the Illinois state legislature? Was that typical for Illinois legislators?

When a previously unknown Joe the Plumber confronted Obama on the campaign trail and was repeatedly cited in a subsequent presidential debate, the MSM successfully uncovered every aspect of “Joe’s” private life in a matter of days. But they’ve had no such luck with Obama’s college records, law school records, college thesis, birth certificate, law firm billing, or daily log as a state legislator. Indeed the MSM does not seem to have tried to obtain any of these documents. Nor is it particularly curious about why the Obama campaign has suppressed those records or what might be in them.

The most telling issue for Senator Obama has been the economic meltdown. Unless one reads the Wall Street Journal editorial page, one would have no clue as to how off-base is Obama’s description of the meltdown as a consequence of the GOP’s deregulation mania. He could not point to a single relevant example of deregulation in the past eight years: Indeed the Bush administration has greatly expanded the regulatory state.

To the extent that deregulation played a role, it was the Democratic refusal to undertake serious oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, when the Bush administration requested it, and the Clinton era regulations pushing banks to offer mortgages to those lacking the requisite credit. How many times has the MSM examined the Obama narrative of unfettered capitalism run amok to ask why a freshmen senator was the biggest recipient of campaign donations from Fannie Mae? Or why was Frederick Raines, who walked off with $90 million in bonuses from Fannie Mae, even as he ran it towards insolvency, was serving as a housing advisor to Senator Obama.

But the media’s greatest cover-up of Obama concerns the radical associations of a life time. Why were the records of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge Grant, a proposal developed by unrepentant terrorist cum professor of education William Ayers, and administered by a board headed by Barack Obama, suddenly unavailable to researcher Stanley Kurtz ? Those records are housed at the University of Illinois Circle Campus, where Ayers teaches.

How did Obama get away with dismissing Ayers as “some guy from the neighborhood” and the rabidly anti-Israel professor Rashid Khalidi as someone “whose kids go to school with my kids?” These three were part of a hard-Left Hyde Park clique. Ayers cites Khalidi in his books as a good example of how to politicize students in the classroom – incidentally, radicalization of black students in Chicago schools, not the improvement of their test scores, was the purpose of the Annenberg Grant. And Khalidi thanks Ayers for letting him use his dining room table to write his tracts, suggesting that Ayers helped write those books. At a farewell dinner for Khalidi as he decamped from University of Chicago to the Edward Said chair at Columbia University, Obama reminisced about their many discussions of the plight of the Palestinians over dinners together, and urged that the conversation should be conducted in front of the entire world.

Why has the coverage of Obama’s radical associations been so muted? Why so little curiosity about what services he rendered for convicted racketeer Tony Rezko that led Rezko to pay for part of the lot on which Obama built his Hyde Park mansion, with money Rezko received from a sleazy Iraqi-born billionaire, who frequently fronted for Saddam Hussein? Could it have had something to do with a desire not to scare elderly Jews in Florida away from the Democratic candidate? Even they know that there are not too many haters of America, like Ayers, who are big fans of Israel’s existence, and none who formerly worked for Yasir Arafat, as Khalidi did.

Rather than investigate these matters, the MSM treated Obama as an “esrog,” and accused anyone who raised these issues of racism. Frank Rich of the New York Times enunciated a new type of affirmative action for black candidates: Any criticism of a black candidate, any questioning of his “palling around” with terrorists is racism. Never mind that John McCain had foolishly taken the most potentially racially explosive issue out of his campaign – Obama’s twenty-year membership in a black separatist church, a church which honored Louis Farrakhan with a life-award for his truth-telling and which was the largest recipient of the Obamas’ pitifully low charitable giving (at least pitifully low for someone who believes that income redistribution is the neighborly thing to do.)

I cannot fathom the complicated hermeneutics by which criticism of Obama’s association with lily-white heir William Ayers is racism. But it did not take an academic to find the traditional anti-Semitism in the comment by one of Obama’s top military advisors, Tony McPeak, that the failure of American Middle East policy can be attributed to Jews in New York City and Miami. Not too much was made of the latter, however, in south Florida publications so as not to scare Jewish voters.

The Israeli media may have pioneered in enlisting journalist in the cause, but the American MSM in this election has proven itself a Frankenstein far outstripping its creator.

This article appeared in the Yated Ne’eman November 5, 2008

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18 Responses

  1. One Christian's perspective says:

    “(Note to American Jews, who polls showed fleeing from the Republican ticket because of Palin’s presence: Continually giving expression to your loathing of devout Christians and expressing your worries that they are busy plotting the next pogram or the imposition of a Christian theocracy, on no evidence, is a pretty fair recipe for alienating Israel’s strongest supporters in the United States and creating anti-Semites where none were previously found.)”

    Personally, I do not see a rise in anti-semitism among devout Christians but rather an awakening to the false ideal that morality can be legislated and people will change. The answer to the world’s problems has always been G-d. Whenever one tries to change another, by pogroms, crusades, by the media, by the vote, or some other false vehicle designed by man, failure is a surety compounded by decades of fear, anger and mistrust. It is only when we put our trust in G-d and pray that hard hearts soften and G-d is glorified. That’s what I think devout Christians will be doing.

  2. Michael says:

    SM wrote: No he didn’t Michael. Go and find the actual words used and then cite them here and we can discuss it.

    He didn’t bother to say which quote he means, but looking back at my comment the only quote I used was this one: “Ayers, in 2001, said he wished he’d managed to kill more Americans.”

    SM wants actual words? Fine, actual words from the NY Times, September 9, 2001: ”I don’t regret setting bombs,” Bill Ayers said. ”I feel we didn’t do enough.” The date of web publication is September 11, 2001.

    FBI informant Larry Grathwohl, asked in October of this year, said the following: ”When I objected to Billy Ayers that more innocent people would be killed in the restaurant, he replied, “Innocent people have to die in a revolution.”” And further:

    Pajamas Media: Bill Ayers came out of hiding around 1980, became an college professor, and has served on numerous boards and foundations. Do you think he’s changed in his radicalism?

    Larry Grathwohl: Has Billy changed? I hardly think so.

    Pajamas Media: If conditions permitted, do you think Ayers would still engage in violence to further a political agenda?

    Larry Grathwohl: He has acknowledged his support of anti-American groups and stated he felt that the Weathermen hadn’t done enough.

    It is generally considered bad form to call your opposition ‘stupid.’ But in this case, the line between Ayers’ own words and at least a disregard for human life, if not an actual wish that he’d managed to murder more people, is so clear that to fail to notice it is evidence of mental retardation — or the intent to twist words and logic to such an extent that he must assume we are all of truly limited intelligence.

    By all means, let’s discuss it. How will you defend the indefensible?

  3. Charles B. Hall says:

    I’ll pass on criticising the gist of the article because there is more than enough contentiousness. But I will point out that Sen. Obama is definitely not the “least experienced” President. Woodrow Wilson’s entire political experience at the time of his election consisted of part of a single two year term as Governor of New Jersey. And Abraham Lincoln had served just a single two year term in Congress.

  4. Steve Brizel says:

    For those interested in the Israeli press, read Yoram Hazony’s book. It is still the best work on the intellectual, political and media origins of post Zionism and how these views have infected the Israeli body politic.

  5. SM says:

    No he didn’t Michael. Go and find the actual words used and then cite them here and we can discuss it.

    That is a much better way to debate than to accuse people you do not know of a messianic belief in a secular politician – not something that one Jew should really say to another as I think you will, on mature reflection, agree.

    In the meantime, Shabbat shalom. Forgive me for saying that it has been a good week – for us all.

  6. The Contarian says:

    Let’s put some perspective on the media’ power.

    There is one thing the MSM pushed for more than the election of Mr. Obama. That is “gay rights”.

    There were several constitutional amendments to ban gay marriage on the ballot in several states in California and Florida. They almost all passed. One of the reasons they did so is the reoord numbers of church going African American and hispanic voters whom Senator Obama energized to come out to vote. They voted overwhelmingly against gay rights.

    The MSM NYT lead editorial yesterday sounded like Haman after having attended Esther’s party when he met Mrodechai who would not bow to him. The editorial almost said that Mr. Obama’s victory was not worth the loss to gay rights.

    So much for the power of the press.

  7. Stefan says:

    Rabbi,
    You’re not the only commentator to have noted with dismay the American media’s suspension of professional norms with regard to Obama. Cross-currents readers may also appreciate the analysis of Harold Evans, former editor of The Times here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/nov/01/elections-obama-press-bias-mccain
    In the end, though, what’s all this telling us? Journalists are not the detached, objective, professional, ethical, sensitive scribes we thought they were?! There’s no excuse for the media’s slavish following of any individual or ideology. The fact is, though, that Obama’s been elected and we have to see what he does. Will his poisonous associations of yesteryear survive the inhibition of office? I doubt it. Will he be a super friend of Israel? Maybe not, like Nixon and Bush Sr.
    Surely now we have to see what Obama does and evaluate those actions and statements on their own terms. Maybe our prayers will help him to choose the right path…?

  8. Ori says:

    Chaim Fisher: Rosenblum and other neocons who, except for destroying the country’s name, dragging it into two disastrous wars, and tearing our moral level down to torture, have really done a pretty good job.

    Ori: Your estimate of the US’s reputation is based on rhetoric rather than facts. Let’s look at some of the likely results of a serious drop in the US’s reputation in other countries:

    1. US troops would be told to leave countries that don’t expect open war as the result. Instead of them being told to leave Germany and Japan, they’ve been invited into Poland. Georgia and the Ukraine want to join NATO.

    2. Countries that worried they might be next on our menu would improve their militaries to deter or counter such an attack. AFAIK, no country in West Europe or the Middle East have done so.

    As for the two disastrous wars, I assume you mean Afghanistan and Iraq. Why do you consider them both disasters?

    In the case of Afghanistan, the Taliban were reduced from ruling the whole country to a part by the Pakistani border. The Al Qaeda training and indoctrination camps were closed, and AFAIK no Muslim regime welcomed Al Qaeda to relocate because they don’t want the US to topple them too.

    You can make a better case that Iraq is a disaster. I’ve read many people who have made such a case. But I’ve also read a lot of military (serving and former) with first hand experience and most of them evaluate things differently.

    Is our moral level down to torture because of Abu Ghreib? Sorry, but that’s like calling the IDF a bunch of murderers based on the Kafr Qasim massacre. In both cases the soldiers responsible were tried by their militaries and punished.

  9. tzippi says:

    Rabbi Rosenblum, I hope you will follow up with a “now what” piece of a more upbeat nature. We know all this, we knew all this when we voted for whomever we did… what’s the point of rehashing it after the fact?

    There are some questions the press can ask of the future:
    – Is it going to be de riguer for someone who wants to be president to spend upwards of 700 million dollars for the job?
    – Who is making the decisions? If I were a king maker, I would have had Hillary run as president and Obama as veep, and not let Obama run in the primaries so there wouldn’t have been the acrimony there was. If a President HRC wouldn’t have blown it, Obama would have been a shoo-in, allowing for 16 years of Democratic rule. But Biden may not be able to run for president 8 years from now because of the age issue. (And who made that an issue?)
    And if I were a Republican king maker, if I thought Sarah Palin was such a hot commodity, I would have unveiled her at the keynote convention speech as they did Obama, and not have even thought of having her run nationally till there was a little more exposure and her family issues better sorted out.

  10. Michael says:

    I disagree with Rosenblum’s thesis… the media has been populated by, and has strongly favored, the left for as far back as I can recall. But these comments against Rabbi Rosenblum are just further evidence of a media so far in the tank for Obama that they passed out for lack of oxygen whenever it was time to ask him a hard question.

    Chaim Fisher: And who cares if she did spend that $150 grand on outfitting her down-home, you-betcha self?!

    Oopsie… She didn’t. It was an MSM-generated fabrication. The stuff was bought for her, she didn’t wear the half of it. And, of course, no one in the media cared at all about Obama’s wardrobe, except for GQ — because he was so well-dressed they put him on the cover. The Republicans spent 0.15 million to dress her for success, and the MSM screamed. Obama flip-flopped on wasting tens of millions of dollars financing his campaign, and they cheered (while ignoring thousands of illegal donations made by credit card to his campaign, often from foreign-countries).

    SM claims: Ayers is a good example. Obama did not know him when he was a terrorist. He met him briefly and did not endorse what he did.

    Try again, because Rabbi R already detailed what the MSM glossed over. Ayers, in 2001, said he wished he’d managed to kill more Americans. Ayers also created the proposal and raised the money for the Chicago Annenberg Challenge Grant, and Barack Obama chaired the board that dished out the money — with a formula for agenda-oriented schooling, created by Ayers, that did absolutely nothing to improve academic performance. Then, Obama launched his political life in Ayers’ living room.

    As with all false religions, the Messianic Believers blind themselves to any faults in their false Messiah. And He has Come. And the MSM paved His way.

  11. Reb Yid says:

    Interesting that this posting assigns ZERO blame to Bush and his administration for the election results.

    I wonder if it was coincidental that Bush and Cheney were nowhere to be found in public on behalf of McCain or any Republican candidates during the past few months.

    Yep, it’s all the media’s fault.

    Let’s get real, yidn.

  12. Steve Brizel says:

    Excellent article. The NYT represents the Boston-NY-Hollywood liberal-left and its chattering classes. Except for Fox and ABC Talk Radio,Commentary, Weekly Standard and the WSJ, the media is overwhelmingly Center-left in the US. The notion that the tenured radicals at most universities and their allies in the press will ever criticize one of their own has long been a specious canard.

  13. SM says:

    I know you don’t like the result but this is too one-sided to be credible.

    I am from the UK but spent the 10 days before the election in the States (on holiday – I would have canvassed for Obama but no one asked me). I watched Fox News and I listened to the radio. I could write the exact article you have written and substitute the candidates.

    If these ‘missing pieces’ are so important then the awe-inspiring Republican Party negative machine would surely have found them. So too Fox and the right-wing radio programmes.

    The reality is that none of this is important. The only use made of any of it is that it doesn’t exist and so people can claim that it IS important. Ayers is a good example. Obama did not know him when he was a terrorist. He met him briefly and did not endorse what he did. End of story.

  14. The Contarian says:

    Dear Rabbi Rosenblum

    You are in good company.

    On Yeshivah World News Flatbush Bubby just commented that she read on some website that the Islamists now control the US money supply.

    The Lakewood Passport Picture store was supposedly packed with Yidden scrambling to get passports.

    My advice to you is:

    Stop whining. Stop the paranoia

    Call the Agudah office in Chicago to learn a few things about the President-Elect .

  15. Lawrence M. Reisman says:

    “Indeed the Bush administration has greatly expanded the regulatory state.”

    Such as the SEC abolishing reserve requirements for investment banks, which allowed Lehman and Bear Stearns to overborrow? This was pushed by the Republican appointees to the SEC with the Bush administration’s urging, and was largely responsible for their downfall. Such as pre-empting several state attempts to reign in predatory lending policies by asserting federal supremacy, and then doing nothing? Had predatory lending been reigned in, the mortgage bubble would not have been as bad. How about the refusal to work towards regulating the market in credit default swaps and other derivatives?

  16. Bob Miller says:

    Why single out the Israeli media as the inventors of politically corrupted journalism? This abuse of journalism has been the norm worldwide, with the US being until recently a quasi-exception.

    Did someone force most of the American public to accept this stuff? Most accepted it willingly, because they had never been taught by their parents, liberal teachers and professors, and others to think critically, and because they had never been taught facts any citizen needs to know. Each generation will be more gullible than the last until American education is somehow fixed.

  17. Ori says:

    Continually giving expression to your loathing of devout Christians and expressing your worries that they are busy plotting the next pogram or the imposition of a Christian theocracy, on no evidence, is a pretty fair recipe for alienating Israel’s strongest supporters in the United States and creating anti-Semites where none were previously found.

    If you don’t mind, I’d like to expand on that point as a Texan with first hand knowledge of precisely those devout Christians.

    It seems there are two models of religion. One is the Middle Eastern model, which is building a society where everybody is pressured to do G-d’s will. This requires a consensus as to what G-d actually wants.

    The other model has the believer doing his or her best to do G-d’s will, but without putting too much pressure on others to do the same. This model has the great advantage of not requiring a consensus as to what G-d wants. That is the common model of religion in the US. It has the great advantage of being workable in a society composed of different religions, or different interpretations of the same religion. Catholics, Baptists, and Mennonites invoke the same names and (mostly) read the same scripture, but in practical terms they are very far apart.

    You can point out some exceptions, both good (fighting against slavery) and bad (alcohol prohibition). In this day and age, the main one is the fight against abortions. But those are precisely that, exceptions. US Christians lack consensus on most practical matters, so they can’t have a theocracy even if they were to desire it.

  18. Chaim Fisher says:

    Yep, 62,000,000 Americans, mostly from the upper-educated higher-IQ class, were all taken for a ride by the wicked news media.

    If only the travesty of Obama’s birth certificate–I believe it’s a certified copy and not an original–and his law school records –and all the other deep dark secrets had been exposed, we’d surely be being led now by a VP who can’t even name a single supreme court decision of the past 20 years–and anyway she’s a really good learner, kind of!

    And who cares if she did spend that $150 grand on outfitting her down-home, you-betcha self?!

    Yes, they were totally fooled. And Obama just got lucky in always keeping his cool when McCain was waffling like a jumping bean. Those poor, foolish American voters really suffered in not following the lead of the wise, educated Rosenblum and other neocons who, except for destroying the country’s name, dragging it into two disastrous wars, and tearing our moral level down to torture, have really done a pretty good job. Sort of. Anyway.