Isaiah L. Carter

Isaiah L. Carter
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Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Birthday
December 31
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Born of the Right, and Glad I Left. Politics Writer at The UB Post. Baltimore born, NYC made. You can follow me on Twitter @IsaiahLCarter, and can view my daily blurbs on my Tumblr: isaiahlcarter.tumblr.com. I look forward to great dialogue and discussing new ideas!

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Salon.com
Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 4, 2012 12:12PM

The Panic Must Cease

Rate: 6 Flag

As a youth, I used to enjoy watching Mike Tyson do his thing in the 1980s. Tyson was a beast in the ring; a force to be reckoned with should one find themselves on the receiving end of his vicious punches. In his prime, Tyson would decimate his opponents without mercy, sometimes even knocking out his opponent within the first round of the fight.

People fed off this fighting style, and looked forward to every time Tyson got into the ring. Some people jokingly and otherwise would get upset when standing in line for their tickets, because by the time they got to the box office, the fight would already be over. However, as time went on, people started to figure out that this was his only dimension of fighting. He was never a finesse, technical, or even a distance fighter; in the proverbial manner of taking a sledgehammer to kill ants, all he knew was soul-crushing, mind-blowing, first-round obliteration once gloves were touched.

Towards the end of his boxing career, Tyson was known to only be as good as the first three rounds; outlast him, and the fight most often was yours to win.

This morning, news websites and many publications have already begun the comeback narrative for Mitt Romney, calling out President Barack Obama for a seemingly lackluster performance against an obviously prepared challenger to his office. Going on the offensive from the start, and steamrolling over the moderator, a feeble Jim Lehrer, multiple times throughout the debate, Mitt Romney displayed the style the entire Far Right base has lusted after for many a day throughout this election cycle. So many people, including MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, Ed Schultz and others, showed genuine dismay when Obama did not knock the former governor of Massachusetts off the stage with lines about how Romney disrespected 47% of the American population back in May, or how the most consistent thing about Mitt Romney is how quickly he lies and spreads deceit.

Shame on progressives for wishing this President was Mike Tyson.

A toe-to-toe boxing match last night would have been a play into the hands of the Right. After all, vicious, withering, nasty battles are what they crave, as is demonstrated by Twitter trolls and Right-wing news outlets. Had Obama sunk to that low level, he would have seemed much less presidential, and Romney would have been validated as a hero for rattling the cage of the often unflappable President. Furthermore, with the seemingly uneventful re-release of his appearance at Hampton University five years ago, conservatives of every stripe were salivating at the opportunity to confirm their narrative of Barack Obama being the ever-dangerous Angry Black Man; therefore, slinging mud at a debate that was wonkish in its essence would have been counterproductive.

David Corn of Mother Jones gave this analysis:

It's clear, one Democratic strategist said, that Obama's inner circle concluded it was best not to turn the debate into a slugfest and hit Romney personally. That might come across as not presidential. It could distract from his aim of persuading those few remaining undecideds that they should see this election as a choice between two starkly different visions for the future and select his. Besides, there are weeks of ads to come, and if the 47-percent theme continues to resonate, the campaign certainly can keep producing ads that use the video as ammo.

This debate season is far from over. With two more presidential debates, and a vice presidential debate coming in the next several weeks, it is beyond a doubt that the 47-percent video will come up. What is being lost among all the panic, however, is just what type of person we saw from Mitt Romney. Boorish, petulant, and reeking of desperation, the man who really, really wants to be President that damn bad came off last night as immature and a bully, which may have been the point all along.

Mount up, folks. This debate season is going to be great. 

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Mr. Carter, I'd like to believe that's right. I have my doubts, though. Over in Real Salon, Steve Kornacki suggested that maybe Obama is tired of fighting the Republican vetos and shoot-downs and propaganda.

A friend of mine, kinder than most, suggested that Obama may have other things on his mind - like the current combat going on in the Middle East, which looks perilously close to war. It could be, but that would just be another pile of manure for the President to shovel. With no support at all from the GOP.

I also think that the liberals/progressives are also tired of fighting. They've spent the last twenty years or so trying to bring progress and fairness back to America, and they get called traitors and fools and names I won't say in polite company. Maybe they want to hunker down in their bunkers and let Rush Limbaugh be elected president, and let the hillbillies and teabaggers and trolls like Luun E. Toonz die of hunger and disease.

And frankly, I can't really blame them for giving up.
Good argument. People have said O didn't want to get bogged down trying to refute all the lies and misinformation. He doesn't have to. He only needs one or two. Know the thoroughly and then hammer the hell out of Romney. Call him a liar if necessary. Ignore the moderator (politely, of course) and then whenever it's his turn to speak again return to the, "...as I said, Governor, you are lying about your claim you wouldn't lower revenue by 7 trillion. " Hammer him every time he tries to deny it. Screw the so-called debate format. These aren't debates. They are theater. O needs to have footage he can use in his TV ads showing him looking sternly at Romulus and calling him on one or two or even three of his worst lies. Nothing else matters.
All good points, Isaiah and I thank you. The president definitely struck me as the more presidential of the two. I'm sure he realizes more than anyone else that he needs to be on his A game at the next two debates. I also think that Romney will fare poorly in the Town Hall Style debate; if that's where the 47 % video issue will arise, I will enjoy watching him try to walk THAT one back in public!

As it was on Wednesday, Romney just convinced me that anyone that hyper and bullying is not a person I EVER want to see followed around by a guy with the Nuclear football. Not least because he and Netanyahu are old friends.

rated
I don’t know about that, Isaiah. I think you are wrong…and that Neutron may be much closer to the truth.

I am a staunch Obama supporter…and will vote for him enthusiastically in November. But he lost the debate big time.

As I said, I think Neutron may be close to the truth. I think Obama and the entire progressive community is tired of fighting this absurd fight. Why anyone except the fabulously wealthy support the radically conservative Republican Party any more is beyond comprehension. If you have to warn a person not to play with matches in a room filled with dynamite, perhaps you should recognize that arguments are not going to work in that situation.

@ Neutron: My sister and I were discussing that same possibility yesterday. You could not have said it better.
Isaiah, I agree with your theory about the president not wanting to feed into the "angry black man" scenario. I have long said that no black man gets the opportunity to become president by spending his days picking fights with white people. That said, I still believe that Romney presented scores of chances for the president to politely, (even respectfully, if need be) point out that the man is a bold-faced liar.

All the president had to do was politely counter with the facts...or, for that matter, with direct Romney quotes from the campaign trail, which alone in all cases with have stamped paid to the lies Romney spilled on that debate stage.

It is true that if carefully and honestly watching, the public got to see Romney as the perfect portrait of the spoiled rich kid who is damn tired of having to wait for the interloper Obama to get the hell out of the house he is certain BELONGS to him. But I saw something else as well: I saw a glimpse of a man who if he wins the presidency may be very surprised that the government does not work like a board room. He will not always get his way. He will not have the ability to fire those who will not do his exact bidding...mostly since that will be all of congress., other world leaders, and on occasion, the supreme court. If nothing else, it should be interesting to watch.
Thank you. I'm dismayed by the declaration of Romney knocking Obama out. That's not how I saw it. I want a leader who is civil and discusses issues respectfully.
Great insights, but really, the cake is baked, the fix is in, for you, my friend, and I, for that matter, have little influence over these elections, for, just like the decisions made by the computer-driven cars of the future, these elections have been taken out of our hands. That's right: the delegates' vote is the only vote that counts, my friend.
I guess we can look at it one of several ways- one is that there is a great soft middle that jiggles towards whatever/whomever seems to be getting the best press a week or that a large group of "true" supporters just can't live with the idea that the President had a bad night at an exercise most consider ridiculous. I really have no patience for debates and the sound bites that go with them but Romney did his etch a sketch as promised and the President did not even call him out on obvious lies and the truths told behind closed doors so a disappointment. Wow, a disappointment in life, I think I can weather it and a few hundred more; in fact I'm kind of glad the far Right has a chance to preen even though its by their man pretending to be a moderate of "Rino" dimensions, not let's win the election. It's never the getting knocked down, it's the getting up. Romney hits like a girl.
I've thought a good deal about the first debate and its aftermath and here is my theory: The fundamentals still favor Obama but he has to reach out and grab it. The worst thing he did with his silence was validate Romney's metamorphesis as a moderate. He is a plutocrat at the head of a radical populist party. That is the truth he cannot run away from unless Obama lets him. Obama does not need to attack Romney necessarily, but he does have to prevent him from reinventing or rebranding himself in real time before an audience of 67 million voters, so all that requires is gentling reminding the audience of Romney's own past statements and positions so as to expose the slick sales job underway. Romney is utterly fake and contrived and Obama just needs to make sure people recognize that. Obama has time to recover because as I said the fundamentals are in his favor. People really don't like the GOP, and they don't like Romney either.
The left’s hysterical reaction to Obama’s shellacking by Romney at the first presidential debate has probably transformed what could have been a passing blip into a permanent decline in Obama’s political future which will probably end up with a packing up operation at the White House.

If Obama and his merry band of advisors had taken their medicine like adults, arranged for speech therapy sessions for the president, and broken the news to Obama that he’s far from perfect, a lot of the furor that is now upsetting Obama’s apple cart might well have been quelled.

But instead of that course, Axelrod, et al. came up with a series of schoolyard excuses that insult the intelligence of the all-important independents. These include Gore’s idiotic climate change scenario, the attack on sweet ol’ Lehrer (what!), and the now infamous “lie” defense, which is not only tasteless and common, but utterly unsupported by facts. Even assuming arguendo that Romney has changed his positions in certain respects, that’s not lying in the sense that Obama routinely does when he breaks promises. The most significant fall-out from this petulant reaction to Obama’s pratfall is the fantastic loss of support Obama is now experiencing from the Fluke flock.

Obama himself seems to have sensed the bad advice he’s been getting as evidenced by a recent speech when he implicitly throws the excuses all away, admits to a ‘get the hook’ performance, and adopts a humorous self-deprecating stance. Had that been his initial response, a lot of damage to his reelection prospects might have been avoided.

Never has Obama been more poorly advised than the raising of a foreign affairs comparison between the two candidates. Romney visited the U.K. and showed off a bit because of his historic success in saving the U.S. Olympics, visited Israel and went a long way to repairing an essential union that Obama has severely compromised for years, and visited Poland where he received a medal from an international hero in the fight for human freedom and dignity. All of this is cited as proof positive that Romney is disqualified to handle foreign affairs. Huh?

Obama, on the other hand, is suffering on a grand scale a general realization of just how hopelessly ill-conceived his entire approach to Islam is and has been. The region is aflame with anti-American sentiment and actions, Americans are murdered, and it is unlikely that Obama and Clinton will survive the scandals arising from ignoring pleas for protection, lying (you want lying, you got it) about the nature of the uprising in Benghazi, and other derelictions of duty in the area. And to further insult the intelligence of independents, all of this is characterized as a “bump in the road.” Some bump. It’s one that will probably bump Obama right out of the White House, a result that was not too promising before 9/11/12 and the first debate.