This is just weird, not to mention wrong.
In the blogosphere, pillorying Hillary Clinton is a full-time sport. Her
slightest remark, such as a recent assertion that the country needs a female
president because there is so much cleaning up to do, elicited this sort of
wisdom: “Hillary isn’t actually a woman, she’s a cyborg, programmed by
Bill, to be a ruthless political machine.” Obama has come in for his
share of abuse as well. His recent speech to Call to Renewal’s Pentecost conference,
in which he urged Democrats to recognize the role of faith in politics, earned
him the following comment from the liberal blogger Atrios: “If . . .
you think it’s important to confirm and embrace the false idea that Democrats
are hostile to religion in order to set yourself apart, then continue doing
what you’re doing.” Left-liberal blog attacks on moderate liberals have
reached the point where “mainstream media” bloggers such as Joe
Klein at Time magazine are wading in to call for a truce, only to get lambasted
Ms. Slaughter doesn’t seem to get it. Partisanship is the lack of
spine to criticize your own, even when they deserve it. Yglesias
gets it right.
… for Democrats to attack Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama isn’t partisanship.
What’s partisanship is when people refrain from criticizing their
party’s leading figures.
The point is that you criticize your own when they get something wrong. Criticizing
Joe Lieberman for his continual Iraq war cheerleading, but especially his dangerous
rhetoric on Iran is not only required, but important. If partisanship was the
rule, Ned Lamont’s amazing campaign and win would never have happened. Everyone
would have blindly gone along with Joe.
To be on the receiving end of a losing argument these days can be uncomfortable
when the reviews come in. But to be the one to point out obvious mistakes by Democrats doesn’t
always go down well either, especially with the fans of presidential candidates, whether you’re talking about Edwards, Clinton, Obama, Biden or even Richardson, as well as subjects beyond the ’08 election. Frankly, it doesn’t matter who I’m praising or criticizing,
I often get accussed of shilling for someone different on any given day. Same with subject matter, especially when I go against conventional Democratic wisdom, say, on guns or immigration. All that
says to me is that I’m doing my job objectively. I’m not a partisan blindly following the pack. That pisses people off all the time.