What’s Bill Moyers talking about?

Last week and this week I’ve been watching PBS because it’s been covering more of the conventions than the networks (did I mention I didn’t go to the conventions this year?).

So I’ve heard, over and over, this promo from Bill Moyers in which, speaking of the 2008 election (I think), he says, "The stakes have never been higher."

Really? How about 1932? Or 1800, when we didn’t know whether a peaceful transition of power from one party to the other was possible in this revolutionary republic until we actually DID it, and after an election that still stands as being as vituperative as any?

How, pray tell, about 1860? Pretty doggoned high stakes there, I’d venture to say.

Yep, this is an extremely interesting election offering starkly different choices for the nation’s future. It is more exciting than any in my adult life (and not, I think, just because I like both McCain and Obama, which is a first for me). But the stakes have been higher.

25 thoughts on “What’s Bill Moyers talking about?

  1. Mike Cakora

    Brad –
    You have to get out a bit more. Moyers is simply conveying the left’s notion that over the past eight years the US has been governed, no, ruled by a war-mongering, liberty-restricting criminal enterprise and now is the time to end that, seek retribution, and bow down to world opinion by ending the hegemony that the US has exercised over the period.
    Do I sound like Lee? Do I exaggerate? Joe Biden may or may not be pushing that theme depending on the venue and day of the week.
    Moyers has moved so far left that I can see his image on my TV only if I max out the vertical hold. I don’t know what I’ll do when I get a real digital TV.
    How far left is he? He’s convinced that the mainstream media are right-wing and interested only in electing Republicans. I don’t think that even bud believes that.

  2. p.m.

    You tell ’em, Mike.
    The left is lame enough to believe that by giving in to our detractors, we gain something.
    It’s like taking the first price the guy who comes to your house to sell windows offers. Like Paul Simon said, every way you look at it you lose.

  3. bud

    How far left is he? He’s convinced that the mainstream media are right-wing and interested only in electing Republicans. I don’t think that even bud believes that.
    A huge chunk of the mainstream media certainly DOES believe that. Fox News certainly does. The ultra right-wing monopoly of talk radio certainly does. The old guard NBC, CBS and ABC pander to this false maverick persona of McCain to the hilt while yammering on and on about silly stuff like the Reverand Wright. To suggest for one nano second that the MSM is liberal is simply to deny reality. It ain’t so.

  4. Guero

    Quack, quack, spoken like a Republican, Mike the Duck.
    “Ruled by a war-mongering. liberty-restricting criminal enterprise”
    Nothing false about that. The shoe fits with the Bush Crime Family.

  5. Lee Muller

    Obama probably is the most unqualified candidate, and the most unAmerican since Bill Clinton. He proposes leaving us defenseless in the face of Islamic fascism with nuclear bombs. That is intolerable.

  6. Brad Warthen

    Mike, while I suspect your characterization of Mr. Moyers is a bit hyperbolic, you may be onto something. One does hear some rather apocalyptic, millennial-type language from Democrats these days.
    This causes me to be very worried about what will happen if McCain wins this election. I fear that Democrats have whipped themselves into such a froth (even to Lee Muller levels, I would say) that IF THEY LOSE — and there is a distinct possibility that they will — they’re going to be be more bitter than a blue-collar, religion-clinging Pennsylvanian. And they will make bloody well sure that those of us who are sick and weary unto our souls over this partisan crap will be miserable for another four years.
    On the other side, Republicans went into this demoralized. Hard to say whether their convention lifted them out of it, or if it did, how long that will last. They went into this EXPECTING to lose. If Obama wins — also a distinct possibility — they are going to be a whole lot less shocked and appalled than Dems would be. They might be bitter, and they might cling more fiercely to their religion, but they won’t be nearly as loud about it.
    All of which is to say, yeah, Bill Moyers is probably speaking Democratese there.

  7. Brad Warthen

    Oh, I have a stupid question to ask of those of you who have cable — did the cable TV “news” channels carry as much of the live convention stuff as PBS did? I was just wondering since, in the few times I surfed around the few channels I get, I saw nothing…

  8. Dino

    “What’s Bill Moyers talking about?”
    Is there really any doubt?
    Moyers, a lawyer himself, knows that trial lawyers have never contributed more to a campaign than to Obama’s two-lawyer ticket.
    These contributions have come on the heels of similarly robust but patently unsuccessful contributions from trial lawyers in 2000 and 2004, and the highest ever rates of law school matriculation.
    Lawyers know what is at stake even if Moyers cannot utter the actual words to a sleeping public. If lawyers continue to finance losers, competition will eventually reduce legal fees. Ouch!

  9. bud

    Brad, that’s just plain dumb. Of course the GOP will be bitter if they lose. After all they’ve been in control for so long. To go from controlling all branches to just the supreme court will be a very tough pill for them to swallow. With any luck at all maybe President Obama can begin to change the direction of the supreme court as well before it is too late.

  10. Lee Muller

    The differences in what the cable networks showed was striking.
    C-SPAN showed speeches and views of the audience the others chose not to show. There were lots of black delegates there, and many were coming by the C-SPAN booth to voluntarily talk.
    MSNBC consisted of five Democrat ersatz journalists (four of them former political staffers) trying to find fault with everything about Sarah Palin, from her earrings and hairstyle to her baby. David Gergen was particulary viscious.
    After her speech, they looked like they all had a big dose of castor oil.

  11. Lee Muller

    Democrats have been in control of the House and Senate and have not even tried to move any legislation along, because they don’t want a public debate. They hope to have a Democrat president or a veto-proof and filibuster-proof Congress so they can just ram through their retrograde socialist agenda, undo the rest of the Reagan Prosperity, and return to the stagnant, state-controlled economy of FDR.

  12. Lee Muller

    Brad, it’s not such a big deal to you because you don’t have the stake we have.
    You have no profit and loss responsibility, you don’t run a business, you aren’t invested in any growth business, you don’t intend to own a gun to defend family or country, and you don’t intend to use free speech or a free press to challenge the corruption in Columbia, Richland County or the SC state government.

  13. Guero

    At the very least, this thread has smoked out Mr. Warthen somewhat. His Republicanism is seeping out little by little.
    Mr. Warthen, your observation on the alleged apocalyptic commentary from Democrats is ludicrous.
    You obviously don’t read your own blog. We’ve got a Leninist take-over by one-world automons coming if you belive the wingnuts here. Your intellectual dishonesty is becoming more and more distasteful every day.
    I do appreciate the blog though as it does reveal your real roots as much as you’d like to hide them and play Hamlet.

  14. Lee Muller

    If Democrats don’t want to sound like Marxists, they should stop talking like Marxists:
    “class warfare”
    “American imperialism”
    “tax the rich”
    “progressive taxation”
    “unearned income”
    “estate taxes”
    “a right to healthcare”
    “central planning of the economy”
    “balancing your rights against public good”
    “gun control”
    “your fair share”
    “your civic duty”
    “national service”

  15. Guero

    Just what color is the sky in your world Spaceman?
    “Lots of black delegates” Huh!
    1%, Spaceman. That works out to somewhere around a dozen, doesn’t it?
    Lots and Lots, Spaceman.

  16. Phillip

    Brad, fair enough about the “stakes have never been higher” hyperbole.
    But are you serious with this comment: “If Obama wins… they are going to be a whole lot less shocked and appalled than Dems would be… they won’t be nearly as loud about it.” ????
    They might not be shocked, but “not appalled”? and not “nearly as loud about it.”??? What are you smoking, and can I get some?
    You know a certain Mr. Muller here, right? and do you check out the right-wing blogosphere and talk radio, a certain Mr. Limbaugh, Mr. Savage, etc.???
    When Obama is elected, what he is going to face on an hourly basis from the merchants of hate will absolutely DWARF what went on during the Clinton administration. And you can be sure it will not stop with the President, but the viciousness will be aimed at the First Lady, the President’s kids, you name it.
    As the extreme right wing begins to get marginalized in American society it will get more and more aggressive, like a cornered attack dog.

  17. Lee Muller

    The Democrat strategy is to skew the tax structure so that the producers of wealth, the savers, the investors, are a minority who can be robbed by a mob at the polls and in the legislatures.
    Obama appeals to the greed of the most indolent voters, who think they are entitled to an equal share of the wealth created by those who work hard, innovate, save, invest, risk and create the wealth.
    We can see these sorry scoundrels cheering Obama on in letters to the editor, on the Internet, and calling talk radio to spew their envy and hate of the real workers.
    The tax structure let’s 75% of adults pay ZERO income taxes.
    Of those who file, the IRS says only the top 51% pay ANY taxes, and those making over $250,000 pay almost ALL the taxes.
    The only “tax cut for the rich” was the one Bill Clinton gave Robert Rubin and friends in 1993, a reduction of capital gains taxes from 28% to 14%. It was long overdue.

  18. Brad Warthen

    Which merchants of hate, Phillip? The ones on the left or the ones on the right?
    Maybe you’ve missed it, but for some time I’ve been noticing that Democrats are more worked up about this election. Do you really think the Republican base wants McCain to win, deep down?
    Of course, Obama has his problem in those who would like to see Hillary run against a GOP incumbent in four years. But I sense that his base is more invested in him than the Republican one is in McCain. I’ve seen a lot of bright, shining faces — very fine young people, by the way, such as our own Laurin Manning — working their hearts out for Obama. For McCain, there’s been what — Lindsey Graham and Henry McMaster? Hey I like both of those guys, but they were looking pretty lonesome not very many months ago.
    Does it not seem that way to you?

  19. Lee Muller

    What is there to like about Obama, or his agenda?
    What is he proposing that is so attractive to anyone?
    What makes you think he is telling you the truth?
    What makes you think he, with no resume of ever accomplishing anything, can actually no suddenly deliver on his promises?

  20. Mike Cakora

    Brad –
    I think McCain’s selection of Palin has done two things: upset Obama’s momentum and fired up the Republican base. Obama had blacks and rich white folks in his corner, but knew he needed white men to win. You’ll find the following quote in this article about his organizing past on Obama’s current politics:

    But, as Obama would have told his trainees 20 years ago, conveying concern requires more than saying the right thing; it involves seeing the world from the vantage of those you are trying to win over–and convincing them that your empathy is sincere.

    One of the several reasons why he selected Biden was to attract middle-class and working class white males, folks who had voted for Hillary in the primaries. (The other reason for selecting Biden was foreign policy creds.) I’m sure his pollsters reinforced this too.
    I don’t think that Biden has helped much — he doesn’t stay on message and is too full of himself — but it’s hard to tell because of McCain’s prompt response in selecting Palin. She appears to be a natural politician whose story dovetails nicely with McCain’s message of change in business as usual. Just as importantly, her story also appeals — at least it seems to so far — to the folks that Obama was going after as evidenced by his selection of McCain.
    We’ll see how well this wears over the next sixty days, but I think that the nutroots attacks on Palin and her family started backfiring shortly after they were made. How the most bizarre — in my book the one about the Down syndrome infant being the daughter’s child, not Palin’s, takes the cake — gained purchase among the crazies and even some mainstream types is breathtaking. And the most recent and most vile (hard to select one, but I did) was also fabricated with no evidence whatsoever, but was a speculation based on a business partner’s attempt to protect his privacy.
    Prognostication ain’t my bag, but after watching tonight’s news and reading around a bit, I think the Repubs are on fire, the Dems seem worried, and Palin — for now — has a lot admirers. How and if that translates into votes in less than two months is the 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue question.

  21. Mike Cakora

    “to the folks that Obama was going after as evidenced by his selection of McCain” should have read “to the folks that Obama was going after as evidenced by his selection of Biden.”
    I’ve only had two beers. Honest.
    BTW, that University of Wisconsin law prof who seems to have her head screwed on pretty well agrees with a commenter that Wile E. Coyote sounds like a typical Obama supporter, and has a link!

  22. Karen McLeod

    Brad, you keep saying that the democrats are saying the more extreme, polarizing things. I don’t follow you. Is Olberman more polarizing than O’Reilly? Or are you talking about the people on the blog? Are you telling me that Bud is more extreme than Lee? That p.m. is more factual than Guero?

  23. Lee Muller

    O’Reilly is informed and uses the truth.
    Keith Oberman is a former sports announcer, with no knowledge of the subjects, who is a waterboy carrying lies for Obama.
    Bud also just makes it up.
    Lee bashes bud and his ilk with facts.
    If there is a nicer way to keep exposing the dishonesty of habitual lying supporters of Obama, tell us.

  24. Lee Muller

    Obama fails to provide birth certificate to the federal court.
    Lawyers for Barack Obama submitted an electronic image of what they claimed was Barack Obama’s Certificate of Live Birth in Hawaii, but not an official paper copy.
    This is odd, since Obama just finished vacationing in Hawaii, where he could have picked up his birth certificate, if one existed.
    Two forensic experts who have examined the images say they are a forgery, an alteration of someone else’s birth certificate.

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