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> Dog whistle politics, Still effective in 2010?
Raptavio
post Oct 7 2010, 02:27 PM
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Sharron Angle's latest ad against Harry Reid has been attacked for deliberately stoking racial fears:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsVmzyDIyKs

Sen. David Vitter used one of the exact same images from Angle's ad (the three thuggish-looking Latinos) in his own attack ad:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=plAMMiOgGsY...player_embedded

These ads and their imagerey reminded me personally of the late Sen. Jesse Helms' infamous 1990 campaign ad, "Hands":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIyewCdXMzk

Or the 1988 George H. W. Bush Presidential ad (run by a third party) using Willie Horton:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Io9KMSSEZ0Y...feature=related

Now, as then, the ads have evoked responses accusing the campaigns of playing to the worst instincts of the electorate. Now, as then, the ads have their defenders, saying the issues they bring up reflect the reality of the situation and are thus fair.

Questions for debate:

Are these ads fair or are they deliberately trying to play to the racial fears of voters?

Is it smart politics to run ads like these?

What do these ads say about the campaigns of those running the ads?
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Amlord
post Oct 7 2010, 03:33 PM
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Are these ads fair or are they deliberately trying to play to the racial fears of voters?

There are two questions here: is the issue a fair one and is the portrayal in the ad a fair one.

The issue is clearly a fair issue. Immigration is among the issues (although not anyone's top issue).

The portrayal? Well illegals by and large brown. That is a fact. The illegals that people care about are the criminal types. ICE just announced that it deported almost 200,000 illegals with criminal records last year.

This not not dog whistle politics, it is a real issue.

Is it smart politics to run ads like these?

There's the rub. I wouldn't run such negative ads if I were running. I'd stick to what he did as Majority Leader of the Senate. Going negative is just not smart in this campaign season where anyone who is an incumbent is in trouble.

What do these ads say about the campaigns of those running the ads?

It might be desperation, it might be that they really want to stomp on the public image of the opponent or it might mean they think it is an honest depiction of the candidate.

This ad was certainly not over the top compared to some others that compare candidates to the Taliban.
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akaCG
post Oct 7 2010, 05:44 PM
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The Angle ad is not "dog whistle" politics. Check out the two construction workers towards the end (22 sec mark), who don't look too happy about the effect that illegal immigrants are having on their paychecks. They sure don't look like blonde blue eyed lily-whites now, do they?

THIS, however, IS "dog whistle" politics:
QUOTE
...
Democratic Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, D-Santa Ana, said in a recent Spanish-language interview that "the Vietnamese" and Republicans are trying to wrest control of her seat in Congress, from which "we have done so much for our community."
...
"The Vietnamese and the Republicans are, with an intensity, (trying) to take this seat – this seat (from which) we have done so much for our community – to take this seat and give it to this Van Tran, who is very anti-immigrant and very anti-Hispanic."
...
Tran himself is an immigrant, having escaped Vietnam with his family shortly before the fall of Saigon. ...
...

Link: http://www.ocregister.com/news/vietnamese-...0|cat:0|order:2

This post has been edited by akaCG: Oct 7 2010, 05:50 PM
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Raptavio
post Oct 7 2010, 07:12 PM
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QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 7 2010, 12:44 PM) *
The Angle ad is not "dog whistle" politics. Check out the two construction workers towards the end (22 sec mark), who don't look too happy about the effect that illegal immigrants are having on their paychecks. They sure don't look like blonde blue eyed lily-whites now, do they?


Uhhhh... neither is blond-haired, nor blue-eyed, but they're both white.

Your point?
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akaCG
post Oct 7 2010, 10:02 PM
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QUOTE(Raptavio @ Oct 7 2010, 03:12 PM) *
QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 7 2010, 12:44 PM) *
The Angle ad is not "dog whistle" politics. Check out the two construction workers towards the end (22 sec mark), who don't look too happy about the effect that illegal immigrants are having on their paychecks. They sure don't look like blonde blue eyed lily-whites now, do they?


Uhhhh... neither is blond-haired, nor blue-eyed, but they're both white.

Your point?


Can't say for real sure about the guy on the left, but the guy on the right definitely looks Hispanic (Puerto Rican, perhaps Cuban).

Incidentally, that's another parallel between the Angle and Vitter ads. At the 13 sec mark, Vitter's ad features a construction worker who looks Puerto Rican or Cuban as well.

Point being, ILLEGAL immigrants in the construction industry (who, according to Reid, do not exist in Nevada) are depressing the wages of construction workers, many of whom are minority LEGAL immigrants.

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Maybe Maybe Not
post Oct 7 2010, 11:37 PM
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QUOTE(Amlord @ Oct 7 2010, 11:33 AM) *
Well illegals by and large brown. That is a fact. The illegals that people care about are the criminal types.
Does it follow that we ought to ("by and large) fear the brown illegals more than we fear illegals of other colors?

Does "brown" therefore become the criterion by which we judge people?

Are there more black criminals than brown ones?

The prison population in the U.S breaks down as follows:
White: 33.44%
African American: 40.21%
Hispanic: 20.29%
Other: 6.06%

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Race_and_crim...ison_population

If it is the criminals about which we should care, shouldn't we be more focused on blacks and whites than we are on browns?

This post has been edited by Maybe Maybe Not: Oct 7 2010, 11:38 PM
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akaCG
post Oct 10 2010, 03:51 AM
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Example of what might be termed "Desperately Seeking Dog-Whistle Politics":
QUOTE
...
October 8, 2010 (CHICAGO) (WLS) -- Republican U.S. Senate candidate Mark Kirk is drawing some criticism for a remark he made to fellow Republicans about the upcoming election.
...
"These are lawyers and other people that will be deployed in key, vulnerable precincts, for example, South and West sides of Chicago, Rockford, Metro East, where the other side might be tempted to jigger the numbers somewhat".
...
Lyle, a Democratic Committee member and an Alexi Giannoulias supporter, and others were offended by Kirk's use of the verb "jigger" when talking about regions heavily populated by black voters.
...
"The problem I had is that it sounds so much like another word," Rev. Albert Tyson said.
...
"He said what he meant. He may not have meant to say it in that manner, but he said it, and it's offensive," Lyle said.
...
The election is 25 days away.
...

Link: http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=n...article-7714744

Fortunately, more and more people are no longer susceptible to being played that way. IOW, not to put too fine a point on it, ... the jig is up.

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AuthorMusician
post Oct 10 2010, 11:20 AM
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Are these ads fair or are they deliberately trying to play to the racial fears of voters?

This is obviously a play on the racists in the audience. Fear mongering.

Is it smart politics to run ads like these?

Sure, when your constituency consists of racists. If not, this is pretty stupid. On top of this, illegal immigration in Nevada isn't much of a problem. The bigger issue is job growth, and so what are the Republicans going to do about that? Give tax breaks for the rich? That's it? Oh yeah, deny unemployment comp. Great. Get you off your lazy tush. Come on, the world needs cheap hookers and drug mules.

What do these ads say about the campaigns of those running the ads?

Conventional wisdom tells us that going negative works, probably more so for Republican candidates than Democratic. It tells me that the campaigns are in trouble, and so all the stops have been pulled out. Karl Rove has been called in.

The issue of illegal immigration is secondary to the issue of fear. Fear for your jobs! The illegals are taking them! Vote Republican because . . . well indeed. Why? What are they going to do about it, lock 'em all up? Send 'em all packing back home? Exactly how is that going to work?

All the Democratic candidates have to do is point out what Republicans have tried to do about illegal immigration. Brilliant plans like the Arizona fiasco and building fences, and so why is there still a problem? Could it be that Republican solutions consist of entirely ineffective garbage?

Is that why we're supposed to be afraid, very afraid, screaming and running afraid? This time the Rove philosophy of winning elections for ineffective governance by ratcheting up fear probably won't work.

This is exactly why I've been predicting that conventional wisdom is dead wrong this election season. The electorate wants effective governance, not political trickery.
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akaCG
post Oct 26 2010, 06:23 PM
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"We don’t mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back.”
--- "Post-racial" President Obama, remarks during yesterday's fundraising trip through Rhode Island

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Dontreadonme
post Oct 26 2010, 06:47 PM
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QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 9 2010, 11:51 PM) *
Fortunately, more and more people are no longer susceptible to being played that way. IOW, not to put too fine a point on it, ... the jig is up.


On this, I agree with you completely....reminds me of the 'niggardly' debacle a few years ago. People need to educate themselves on the meaning of a word before they either misinterpret it, or persuade others to.
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lo rez
post Oct 26 2010, 07:13 PM
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QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 26 2010, 01:23 PM) *
"We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."
--- "Post-racial" President Obama, remarks during yesterday's fundraising trip through Rhode Island



"..we can't have special interests sitting shotgun. We gotta have middle class families up in front. We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."

"Post-racial" President Obama, remarks during yesterday's fundraising trip through Rhode Island

This post has been edited by lo rez: Oct 26 2010, 07:15 PM
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akaCG
post Oct 26 2010, 07:54 PM
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QUOTE(lo rez @ Oct 26 2010, 03:13 PM) *
QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 26 2010, 01:23 PM) *
"We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."
--- "Post-racial" President Obama, remarks during yesterday's fundraising trip through Rhode Island



"..we can't have special interests sitting shotgun. We gotta have middle class families up in front. We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."

"Post-racial" President Obama, remarks during yesterday's fundraising trip through Rhode Island

Yes, "lo-rez", I'm well aware that Obama's speech contained more words and phrases than the ones I quoted. That's how "dog whistle" messaging works: you insert a "code" phrase amidst a whole bunch of other statements. At least according to the methodology used by Lefties/Liberals/Democrats, who for years have been assiduously combing through conservatives'/Republicans' speeches for the phrase "states rights" and, upon finding one, exclaiming "Aha! Another Rethuglican sending subliminal messages to his white constituency!".
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lo rez
post Oct 26 2010, 08:04 PM
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QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 26 2010, 02:54 PM) *
QUOTE(lo rez @ Oct 26 2010, 03:13 PM) *
QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 26 2010, 01:23 PM) *
"We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."
--- "Post-racial" President Obama, remarks during yesterday's fundraising trip through Rhode Island



"..we can't have special interests sitting shotgun. We gotta have middle class families up in front. We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."

"Post-racial" President Obama, remarks during yesterday's fundraising trip through Rhode Island

Yes, "lo-rez", I'm well aware that Obama's speech contained more words and phrases than the ones I quoted. That's how "dog whistle" messaging works: you insert a "code" phrase amidst a whole bunch of other statements. At least according to the methodology used by Lefties/Liberals/Democrats, who for years have been assiduously combing through conservatives'/Republicans' speeches for the phrase "states rights" and, upon finding one, exclaiming "Aha! Another Rethuglican sending subliminal messages to his white constituency!".


fair enough. you have my apologies.
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Raptavio
post Oct 26 2010, 08:20 PM
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Kinda like inserting the words "post-racial" as if the term achieved common usage anywhere but within Republican circles?
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akaCG
post Oct 26 2010, 09:02 PM
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QUOTE(Raptavio @ Oct 26 2010, 04:20 PM) *
Kinda like inserting the words "post-racial" as if the term achieved common usage anywhere but within Republican circles?

Er, ...
QUOTE
...
January 28, 2008
NPR Senior News Analyst Daniel Schorr observes the ascendance of Barack Obama as a presidential candidate and wonders whether the U.S. is entering a new, "post-racial" political era.
...
DANIEL SCHORR: Welcome to the latest buzz word in the political lexicon, post-racial. ... The post-racial era, as embodied by Obama, is the era where civil rights veterans of the past century are consigned to history and Americans begin to make race-free judgments on who should lead them.

Post-racial began to come into vogue after Obama won the Iowa caucuses and faired well in the New Hampshire primary.

The Economist called it a post-racial triumph ... The New Yorker wrote of a post-racial generation ...
...

Link: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.p...toryId=18489466

QUOTE
...
The Power of the "Post-Racial" Narrative

After President Barack Obama's State of the Union address last week, Chris Matthews had an epiphany about the president: "I was trying to think about who he was tonight. It's interesting; he is post-racial, by all appearances. I forgot he was black tonight for an hour."
...

Link: http://www.prospect.org/cs/articles?articl...acial_narrative

QUOTE
...
Our Post-racial Future

Martin Peretz, March 23, 2008
...

Link: http://www.tnr.com/blog/the-spine/our-post-racial-future

You were sayin' somethin' about "[no]where but within Republican circles"?
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Raptavio
post Oct 27 2010, 01:31 AM
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Yes; I said common usage. You obviously did a Google search; you had to have seen those three references were buried in an avalanche of very "race-conscious" right-wing articles.

Schorr's article argued against the notion that Obama was post-racial, and also noted that the referenced New Yorker article spoke to a wish for a post-racial America.

Matthews' idiotic remarks were widely lampooned on the Left as well as the Right.

Peretz wrote a one-paragraph blurb. I'm going to go ahead and assume you included such a weak example because you couldn't find anything better.

Of your three links, ONLY Matthews referred to the President himself as post-racial; to refer to the President as post-racial is almost universally a right-wing meme, intended sarcastically, and intended as a dog-whistle. The meaning is plain, and I will exaggerate it only slightly: "He's really out for himself and other black people and is the enemy of whites." People like Rush Limbaugh and your beloved televangelist Beck, of course, don't bother with the dogwhistle and speak it openly.

And, in fact, regardless of the hair-splitting you may wish to do over just how often the term is used outside the Right, such quibbles are actually irrelvant to that truth: it is an excellent example of a right-wing dogwhistle, and I thank you for providing it as an example, however unwittingly.

This post has been edited by Raptavio: Oct 27 2010, 01:31 AM
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akaCG
post Oct 27 2010, 02:17 AM
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QUOTE(Raptavio @ Oct 26 2010, 09:31 PM) *
Yes; I said common usage. You obviously did a Google search; you had to have seen those three references were buried in an avalanche of very "race-conscious" right-wing articles.

Schorr's article argued against the notion that Obama was post-racial, and also noted that the referenced New Yorker article spoke to a wish for a post-racial America.

Matthews' idiotic remarks were widely lampooned on the Left as well as the Right.

Peretz wrote a one-paragraph blurb. I'm going to go ahead and assume you included such a weak example because you couldn't find anything better.
...

By your definition of "common usage", a term such as "anthropogenic global warming" is in common usage solely in "warmist" circles because, even though both "warmists" and "denialists" use it in their debates/discussions, only the former believe that it is a valid concept, while the latter lampoon it.

I'm going to go ahead and assume that you just came up with such a contorted definition because your claim that "post racial" is a term that has achieved common usage only in Republican circles hasn't worked out so well for you.

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Raptavio
post Oct 27 2010, 03:07 PM
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Aaaand here we go again with standard akaCG debate tactics when he's got a loser of an argument.

Pattern is thus:

Opponent makes salient point directly related to the topic coupled with one or more side points.

akaCG decides salient point is less refutable than side point, and focuses on side point.

Opponent is roped in for one exchange, then points out that the side point is not germane to the on-topic point.

akaCG doggedly sticks to side point and ignores salient point.

Now comes the part where opponent emphasizes side point's irrelevance to main point while noting that his defense of side point (a single case of referring to Obama as post-racial constitutes common use? really?) is laughably weak.

At this phase of the debate strategy, akaCG will either make a ridiculously stretched case that the side point - the usage of "post-racial" to describe the President in any context other than the right-wing dogwhistle - is important to the main point - the fact that such usage is, in fact, a right-wing dogwhistle, OR he will continue to press the side point to the exclusion of the important point, and his opponent will, at that point, throw up his hands and move on.

Oh, and on the point you made, akaCG, about Republicans riding in the back -- the allegory was obviously about riding in a car and the GOP riding in the backseat, i.e. not being in control, and NOT to riding in the back of the bus a la Jim Crow South, i.e. the GOP being unworthy of equal protection under the law. At worst, Obama's choice of words was easily misinterpretable, and therefore easily exploitable by those pushing the dogwhistle narrative about the President being one of those scary black people out to get whites.
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akaCG
post Oct 27 2010, 04:36 PM
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QUOTE(Raptavio @ Oct 27 2010, 11:07 AM) *
Aaaand here we go again with standard akaCG debate tactics when he's got a loser of an argument.

Pattern is thus:

Opponent makes salient point directly related to the topic coupled with one or more side points.

akaCG decides salient point is less refutable than side point, and focuses on side point.

Opponent is roped in for one exchange, then points out that the side point is not germane to the on-topic point.

akaCG doggedly sticks to side point and ignores salient point.

Now comes the part where opponent emphasizes side point's irrelevance to main point while noting that his defense of side point (a single case of referring to Obama as post-racial constitutes common use? really?) is laughably weak.

At this phase of the debate strategy, akaCG will either make a ridiculously stretched case that the side point - the usage of "post-racial" to describe the President in any context other than the right-wing dogwhistle - is important to the main point - the fact that such usage is, in fact, a right-wing dogwhistle, OR he will continue to press the side point to the exclusion of the important point, and his opponent will, at that point, throw up his hands and move on.
...

I'm having a bit of trouble following your Rube Goldberg-like post.

Would you mind specifying which bit(s) of the following statement of yours is/are the "salient" one(s), and which one(s) is/are the "side point(s)", please?

"Kinda like inserting the words 'post-racial' as if the term achieved common usage anywhere but within Republican circles."

'Cause the way I'm interepreting its meaning is as follows:

"Since the term 'post-racial' has only achieved common usage within Republican circles, inserting it amidst a bunch of other statements is an example of right-wing 'dog-whistle' messaging".

Or am I missing something?
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Raptavio
post Oct 27 2010, 06:56 PM
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QUOTE(akaCG @ Oct 27 2010, 11:36 AM) *
I'm having a bit of trouble following your Rube Goldberg-like post.

Would you mind specifying which bit(s) of the following statement of yours is/are the "salient" one(s), and which one(s) is/are the "side point(s)", please?

"Kinda like inserting the words 'post-racial' as if the term achieved common usage anywhere but within Republican circles."

'Cause the way I'm interepreting its meaning is as follows:

"Since the term 'post-racial' has only achieved common usage within Republican circles, inserting it amidst a bunch of other statements is an example of right-wing 'dog-whistle' messaging".

Or am I missing something?


Yes, you're missing something.

I said that it's used almost exclusively as a dogwhistle.

You argue no, it's used elsewhere too. This argues the exclusivity point, but not the point about whether or not it's a dogwhistle.

And -- as I predicted -- you are now saying that somehow the exclusivity has something to do with whether or not it's a dogwhistle... though I am impressed that your variance on that effort has taken a new tack in that you put the connection on me, however ineffectually.

No; it is a dogwhistle because the clear intention in virtually every right-wing use of the term in describing the President is to suggest anti-white bias on his part. Including yours. These suggestions are usually coupled with some tortured logic suggesting that something that insufficently defended white privilege, or which promoted minority rights, was evidence of racism. Or trying to cast something unrelated to race (such as your citation, a declaration that the GOP oughtn't be at the controls of this nation) as racial; your example would only be castable as racial if one equated Republicans with whites. (Yet another unintentional admission about what the GOP stands for, perhaps?) The fact that the term "post-racial" as applies to Obama saw very sparse and brief unironic usage is noteworthy only in that the disproportionate "response" to the few unironic uses of the term makes it that much more significant that the Right so gleefully and almost compulsively uses the term to sarcastically apply to the President.

As noted in other threads, a long running theme in dogwhistle politics boils down to "Black people are a threat to white people" - either through violence (they'll kill you and rape your wives and daughters) or through theft (they'll take your tax money and your jobs). As with the ACORN, Van Jones, NBPP adn Shirley Sherrod narratives, the "post-racial (snicker)" Obama narrative is simply a continuation of that traditional dogwhistle that began with Nixon's Southern Strategy, continued with Reagan's "states' rights" wink and not, Lee Atwater's "gang violence" and "welfare queen" memes, and Karl Rove's "McCain fathered a mixed-race child" push-poll in 2000.
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