Republican Senate candidate Michael Steele has released a powerful TV ad aimed at getting black Democrats to cross over and vote for him.  
 
 
filter the vote 2006
and note that
phlap: he will not give his party or his president's name on his ads! whyh is that? becuase Bush and the GOP have screwed up this countryh and this guy knows enough not to identify with BUSH and the GOP
Interesting quote:
darkstar: "And one party preached reconciliation while practicing division."  
 
Um...which party would that be, again? The one that Steele says practices division?  
 
Bud Tugly: Could it be.... the Democrats?
darkstar: Perhaps.  
 
And I'm sure you can't think of half a dozen even better examples from the Republicans, though.  
 
Can you?
Bud Tugly: This election year? I can't think of one.  
 
 
 
 
 
Can you?
darkstar: You can't think of any examples in which the Republicans have (this year or any other) engaged in divisive politics?  
 
Seriously? I mean, really...seriously?  
 
I find that extremely difficult to believe. And indeed, if it's true, then I must confess that my estimation of you has changed dramatically.
Bud Tugly: If we're discussing racial divisiveness, than no I don't thing Republicans engage in that.  
 
Of course politics is divisive by nature. Political divisions - policy differences.  
 
I hear much nastier racial politicing on the Liberal side of the isle.  
 
I remember listening to a black talk radio station when visiting a major city during the '04 election campaign. I was discusted at the venom directed at Condi Rice ("House Slave") and Bush ("Slave Owner"). Cheney was called a "cracker" and the political ads on that station always referred to "our people" and "our interests". If Bush was re-elected, black churches would burn and more black soldiers would die in Iraq for white oil interests. I doubt they've cleaned up their act.
darkstar: "If we're discussing racial divisiveness, than no I don't thing Republicans engage in that."  
 
 
Wow.  
 
I mean, you haven't been paying attention much to what some Republicans have been saying about the immigration issue lately, then, have you?  
 
I participate in an online forum run by the Arizona Republic, wherein Republicans regularly say some of the most disgustingly vile, racist things about immigrants and anyone who suggests that their comments are inappropriate is labeled a traitor.  
 
In any event, I don't recall limiting the issue to only racial divisiveness. There are all kind of ways to intentionally divide society for political benefit, and not your more benign sense, either.  
 
Race, social status, economic class, sexual orientation, dissent on policy...the Republicans have perfected wedge issue politics to win elections.  
 
The Southern Strategy was an explicit attempt to use race to shift Dixiecrats to the Republican party. Key Republicans have admitted it.  
 
But more recently, people who dissent with the President on the War in Iraq are openly labeled traitors, cowards, unAmerican, terrorist sympathizers and appeasers. Not only by bloggers, but by key members of the Bush administration!  
 
Every election season, including this summer, Republicans stage a number of wedge issue votes in Congress they absolutely know won't pass, but are gauged to rally their base.  
 
Reagan is famous for dismissing the poor as "welfare queens" and the whole Republican approach to taxation is an effort to make it as regressive as possible.  
 
So for you to suggest that the Republicans don't engage in the politics of division would be laughable if it weren't such a pernicious denial of the truth.
Bud Tugly: The Southern Strategy was an explicit attempt to use race to shift Dixiecrats to the Republican party. Key Republicans have admitted it.  
 
- Yes, that's true.  
 
But more recently, people who dissent with the President on the War in Iraq are openly labeled traitors, cowards, unAmerican, terrorist sympathizers and appeasers. Not only by bloggers, but by key members of the Bush administration!  
 
- I would like an example of a "key member" of the Bush Administration labeling war dissenters as traitors, cowards, UnAmerican, terrorist sympathizers, or appeasers. I want the quote. President Bush has said the exact opposite of those things. He calls them "good Americans"; they are just wrong.  
 
Every election season, including this summer, Republicans stage a number of wedge issue votes in Congress they absolutely know won't pass, but are gauged to rally their base.  
 
- True. That's just good politics. It is important to get your opponents on the record on the important issues of the day. I love it when Democrats demand immediate withdrawl from Iraq and then won't vote to defund the war effort. It shows that they are just all talk. By the way, when Democrats are in power they do the same.  
 
Reagan is famous for dismissing the poor as "welfare queens" and the whole Republican approach to taxation is an effort to make it as regressive as possible.  
 
- During his stump speeches, promising to roll back welfare, Reagan often told the story of a so-called “welfare queen” in Chicago who drove a Cadillac and had ripped off $150,000 from the government using 80 aliases, 30 addresses, a dozen social security cards and four fictional dead husbands. Journalists searched for this “welfare cheat” in the hopes of interviewing her and discovered that she didn’t exist.  
 
That is a fair criticism of a great man.  
 
And, yes, he was a great man. Just as FDR was great even though he trampled all the civil rights and liberties of Japanese -Americans in WWII, made dangerous overtures to take over the Supreme Court, and almost blew it all at Yalta.
darkstar: I would like an example of a "key member" of the Bush Administration labeling war dissenters as traitors, cowards, UnAmerican, terrorist sympathizers, or appeasers.  
 
Sure thing.
Bud Tugly: No.  
 
Here's the full text of the speech.  
 
Could you please quote the offending line?  
 
I'm not interested in the media spin that your link has.  
 
You can't show me anywhere in this speech where Rumsfeld calls war dissenters anything.  
 
This speech was mischaracterized by AP and the mischaractorization was spread everywhere by the media.
darkstar: You're most certainly mistaken. From Rumsfeld's speech:  
 
It was a time when a certain amount of cynicism and moral confusion set in among Western democracies. When those who warned about a coming crisis, the rise of fascism and nazism, they were ridiculed or ignored. Indeed, in the decades before World War II, a great many argued that the fascist threat was exaggerated or that it was someone else's problem. Some nations tried to negotiate a separate peace, even as the enemy made its deadly ambitions crystal clear. It was, as Winston Churchill observed, a bit like feeding a crocodile, hoping it would eat you last.  
 
There was a strange innocence about the world. Someone recently recalled one U.S. senator's reaction in September of 1939 upon hearing that Hitler had invaded Poland to start World War II. He exclaimed:  
 
“Lord, if only I had talked to Hitler, all of this might have been avoided!”  
 
I recount that history because once again we face similar challenges in efforts to confront the rising threat of a new type of fascism. Today -- another enemy, a different kind of enemy -- has made clear its intentions with attacks in places like New York and Washington, D.C., Bali, London, Madrid, Moscow and so many other places. But some seem not to have learned history's lessons.  
 
We need to consider the following questions, I would submit:  
 
* With the growing lethality and the increasing availability of weapons, can we truly afford to believe that somehow, some way, vicious extremists can be appeased?  
* Can folks really continue to think that free countries can negotiate a separate peace with terrorists?  
* Can we afford the luxury of pretending that the threats today are simply law enforcement problems, like robbing a bank or stealing a car; rather than threats of a fundamentally different nature requiring fundamentally different approaches?  
* And can we really afford to return to the destructive view that America, not the enemy, but America, is the source of the world's troubles?  
 
These are central questions of our time, and we must face them honestly.
If anyone reads that and doesn't see Rumsfeld comparing Iraq war dissenters with Nazi appeasers, then it would appear they have seriously abdicated any pretense of intellectual honesty on this issue, or have seriously impaired reading skills.
Bud Tugly: Rumsfeld asks a series of rhetorical questions and you call that "key members" (plural) calling war dissenters "traitors, cowards, UnAmerican, terrorist sympathizers, and appeasers"?  
 
Not good enough.  
 
Where is the open labeling? Where is the name-calling?  
 
Is that the best you've got?
FoolProof: WHOA, WHOA, WHOA! You guys are forgetting the most important thing about this whole thing. The ad, which this post is/ is about, SUCKS. It's not convincing anyone of anything. So, this argument is for nothing.
Bud Tugly:
 

 
 
 
"Nevermind."
darkstar: Let me rephrase that.  
 
You chose one photograph that a blogger put up. Score a point for your argument.  
 
I'm sure anyone with any interest in the truth could find probably hundreds of questionable photos on conservative blogs that emphasize divisiveness. Not to mention the much more profound efforts of the actual Republican party and candidates to engage in the politics of division as a key aspect of their political strategy.  
 
Now, if you're interested in seriously answering my question above, perhaps you're prepared to make the argument that the Republican party does not engage, to a pervasive degree, in the politics of division.  
 
If you're prepared to make that statement, I'm all ears, of course.