‘… and we gon’ KEEP it dat way…’

Forgot to share this Henry McMaster ad a couple of weeks back. Remember when I said Henry’s accent needed to be preserved and placed in a museum?

Well, he outdid himself in that one.

I got to thinking about that ad because of his new one, in which he takes on a nastier edge and makes like Catherine Templeton voting for Vincent Sheheen for governor in 2010 was a bad thing. When in truth, it’s one of the few good things I’ve ever heard about her.

Meanwhile, he suggests that being “friends” with Donald Trump is a good thing. It’s just a topsy-turvy world that Henry inhabits.

But snark aside: That’s one very ugly ad. Listen to the irritating female voice that just drips with sarcasm when it says, “because Nikki’s Democratic opponent was her friend.” As though there could be nothing more contemptible on Earth than calling Vincent Sheheen your friend. Or any Democrat. As though they were some subhuman species.

That’s a truly disgusting video, governor, and you should be ashamed of it. Are you going to keep going down this trail?

19 thoughts on “‘… and we gon’ KEEP it dat way…’

  1. Karen Pearson

    It’s trumpism at its worst and it smells like a chicken plant. I’ve long considered McMaster one of those who gives politics a bad name. He seems to be going out of his way to lower my opinion of him.

  2. Daniel

    Isn’t that missing the point of the ad? Which is that voting for someone because they’re your friend, rather than the candidate you’d presumably be most philosophically aligned with, is not an endearing quality in a candidate?

    If Templeton wants to say that she voted for Sheheen because she disagrees with Haley, she should make that clear (and Republican voters should certainly know that). If that’s not the case, and she places personal friendship above philosophical alignment, then she should make that clear too (and I think Republicans should equally know that).

    I’m no McMaster (or Templeton) fan, but voting for governor isn’t a vote for kindergarten class president, and we should expect more from serious candidates than to have treated it as such.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      That argument only makes sense if you think loyalty to the parties and their ideologies is an important thing. I don’t. I value independent thought.

      And the fact that she could be friends with a Democrat (if that’s true, which remains to be seen) is the one factor I’ve heard asserted in this campaign that would make me think well of Templeton.

      And the fact that Henry is making friendship with a Democrat out to be a bad thing is an abomination.

      Because this isn’t about governing philosophies or policy. It’s about the new American tribalism, about separating our country into us good people over here versus those bad people over there.

      And it’s tearing our country apart….

  3. bud

    The whole tribalism thing really is one sided. I’ve yet to see a Democrat trash McCain. But today it was announced that Harry Reid has pancreatic cancer. And Trump supporters are coming out saying they hope Reid suffers as a result. There is just not equivalence between the two major parties. The GOP IS the party of tRump. It’s a disgusting, miserable outfit.

  4. Harry Harris

    These are the people you and Cindi Scoppe want to be in charge of the education department because they are so accountable. Education is a lot more complicated than politicians and pundits imagine.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      “These are the people you and Cindi Scoppe want to be in charge of the education department because they are so accountable.”

      How do you figure that?

      “Education is a lot more complicated than politicians and pundits imagine.”

      And in what way does choosing the superintendent separately in a popular election address that challenge? Seems like the last thing you’d want to do…

        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          Yeah, a lot of Democrats feel that way, and always have — which sort of made sense, from a partisan perspective, when they were able to win that position while losing the governor races. Now, they can’t win the superintendent races, either. And ANY Republican might win such low-profile races — you can end up with a Molly Spearman, or you might get a Mick Zais.

          It’s pot luck. And perhaps that’s what Dems count on — that their candidate might slip through in the fall. But they’re not all that likely to win a down-ballot race like that while losing at the top, given the abomination of party-line voting. They’re more likely to win if they win the governor’s office, too.

          Democrats who believe in public education should be pushing for two things in the fall: Victory for James Smith, assuming he wins his primary (and if he doesn’t, SC is screwed yet again), and a “Yes” vote on the superintendent change…

          1. bud

            Yes for Smith if he’s the Dem nominee. No for governor picking SE. Sorry Brad your arguments are just not persuasive.

            1. Brad Warthen Post author

              It really doesn’t require much of an argument. We have a dysfunctional government in SC, by design. Powerful interests wanted to keep power invested in the Legislature, and make sure other branches couldn’t challenge legislative power. One of the ways they did this, among others, was my splitting up the executive branch into nine separately elected officials, most of whom would be relatively obscure, while the governor everyone could name (and in other states, could hold accountable) had practically no direct power over the executive functions of government at all.

              The superintendent of education is the biggest remaining vestige of that insane system.

              If you want to elect, say, a James Smith as governor and you want him to make a difference, you wouldn’t want to place 40 percent of the government — measured in terms of spending — under a separately elected person. It’s just nuts…

              Democrats’s support for this system is based in hopelessness. Assuming a Democrat could win the superintendent job in a year when a Republican wins the governor’s office doesn’t mean a Democrat is in position to effect real change. It just means the executive branch is splintered and ineffective. The superintendent is essentially a bureaucrat who carries out policies set by others, not a person who leads real change. There’s no reason to elect that person, other than to hobble a Republican governor’s ability to have an effect on the system.

              It’s really a depressing strategy…

              1. bud

                There’s no reason to elect that person, other than to hobble a Republican governor’s ability to have an effect on the system.

                Works for me.

                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  In other words, just pure negativity, obstructionism, destructiveness.

                  Yep, that’s what partisanship in America has become.

                  I’d use the word “nihilism” again here, but Doug doesn’t like it when I do that…

                2. bud

                  If you knew a NAZI would become governor wouldn’t you want to minimize his ability to be destructive? Yeh I know playing the Nazi card is a debating faux pas. And no, as awful as they are the GOP is not as evil as the Nazis. But they are certainly wrong and reprehensible enough that we should strive to minimize the damage they are capable of as much as possible. This seems so obvious.

                3. Doug Ross

                  Does nihilism mean tearing down a dilapidated building so it can be rebuilt in a better way? All of my supposed nihilism is based on replacing a bad system with a better one.

                  I support the governor selecting the superintendent but don’t think it will really make any difference in the way education is delivered. The problem with public education goes far beyond whatever bureaucrat fills the job.

            2. Dave

              I’d say it’s amazing that Cindi Scoppe thinks that the Governor picking the Superintendent of Education is some major move forward toward improving education in South Carolina except that this is so reflective of Scoppe’s work in general. She gets so focused on legislative minutiae that she doesn’t lose the forest for the trees, she loses the forest for the veins on the leaves of the tree. A Governor picking an SE isn’t going to significantly improve education or produce accountability. What’s needed for that is a fundamental change in the mindset of South Carolinians and their politicians. A dedication to spending the resources necessary to improve education and an insistence on high standards.

              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                You have it exactly backwards. Cindi’s like me — a forest person. We both might be (and have been, many times) faulted for our lack of interest in this or that tree, but the thing is we’re looking at this from a long-term, wide perspective.

                The minutiae — the trees, the veins — are the objections that people come up with in resisting a rational form of government.

                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  I say that dismissively, but I’m a little defensive about it. As the chaplain said in Catch-22, I wouldn’t want to live without strong misgivings.

                  And when I have misgivings, it’s about my own tendencies to think in broad strokes, to look at things from the satellite-image view, and fail to consider what is happening to this or that individual human being down on ground level. Not that I don’t CARE — I want what’s best for all individuals. But when somebody argues against one of my pet ideas by saying it wouldn’t work for his Uncle Joe, I tend to get impatient with such anecdotal evidence.

                  I should always pay more attention to the trees than I’m inclined to do as I consider my forest, even though too often, switching to focus on the individual cases seems like a digression to me.

                  Of course, I love an individual case that illustrates my broader point, but I try to be honest enough to admit that the existence of such a fortuitous example does not PROVE my larger point, any more than a contrary example disproves it…

      1. Harry Harris

        Choosing the State Superintendent of Ed by election is not wise at all in my opinion, and it never was. It should be removed from elective politics, but also insulated from the doctrinaire “education speak that dominates state and national politics. As I’ve written before, I consider the State Supt job to be an administrative and leadership job that should be hired and fired by according to merit and performance. I would favor an empowered state board that set policy and hired, fired, and evaluated the Supt. As it is now, the Supt effectively sets policy since he/she basically can’t be removed. The board could be 6 appointed by the Governor, 6 appointed by the legislature, and 6 elected by an at-large state election. All categories should have staggered terms.
        A great deal of the power is held at the school district level. Superintendents work for a local board, not the state department. Reform at that level is needed even more than at the state level. The recent takeovers by the State Supt are a step in the right direction, showing that she is willing to intervene in the most troubled and dysfunctional districts. Improving the effectiveness of the local school boards is an area that needs study and reform. We just have to stop jumping on thinly-reasoned and short-sighted solutions.
        I would still argue that our polarized political times are not a good time to be concentrating authority. A broader, compromise-oriented structure like the State Board/Superintendent arrangement I propose seems to me much better than betting on getting a good governor.

        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          Well, my focus will be on getting a good governor. The right governor can make a huge difference in changing the tone, and thereby changing the direction, of our state.

          It’s been a long wait.

          We’ve been in the doldrums in this state ever since the disastrous Democratic primary of 1994. I still haven’t gotten over that one, the opportunity lost.

          NIck Theodore had, as lieutenant governor, been running for governor full-time for eight years. Joe Riley had been running Charleston, and was widely regarded as one of the best, if not THE best, mayors in the country. Riley was a guy who fully understood what South Carolina needed and could articulate it perfectly — and his experience as mayor showed that he knew how to translate ideas into reality. Nick Theodore was just this guy who wanted to be governor.

          They got into a runoff, and then on the night of the runoff, a terrible thing happened. Joe lost by a razor-thin margin, mainly because he hadn’t been able to run as intense a campaign as Theodore, what with having a city to run.

          If one more person in each precinct in the state had voted for Joe in the runoff, he’d have run. It was that close.

          And we haven’t come that close to having a really good governor since…

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