Law School Discussion

Presidential Hopeful ...

Oprah "Rejoicing," Already Bought Inauguration Dress
« Reply #300 on: November 04, 2008, 06:42:28 PM »

Oprah had an Election Day special live show today, which opened with characteristic Oprah enthusiasm and a convention-like entrance while Daughtry played live in the background. "I couldn't sleep last night!" Oprah said. "Been countin' down the days and it's finally hereeeeeee!" Oprah also did something she's never done before: she told viewers to turn off the TV and go vote, if they hadn't done so already.

Oprah Winfrey called into the Ed Lover show on New York's Power 105.1 FM Tuesday morning, where she encouraged listeners to vote and shared her excitement about the election. She is so confident that her candidate, Barack Obama, will win the election that she's already bought her gown for his inauguration!

"When Barack wins this evening, it's a victory all of America - because black people and brown people and red people and yellow people all understand that he understands that all villages matter," she said. "That's what Colin Powell said when gave that beautiful endorsement of him. That is why I loved and supported him from the beginning."

Winfrey - who said she already bought her dress for Obama's inauguration -- said today "is a dating of rejoicing for me. It's a powerful thing we are going to do today, as a nation, with of our vote."

She plans to celebrate at Chicago's Grant Park tonight. Her pal Gayle King is even flying in.

Added Winfrey, "We want to be there that moment when Barack comes out ... and he is the new president of the United States."

I'm Ready to Declare a Winner in the 2008 Race
« Reply #301 on: November 04, 2008, 06:57:39 PM »

Okay, all the arguments have been made. And I am ready to declare a winner in the 2008 race.

The Internet.

From the way campaigns connect to supporters, to the way those campaigns are covered, to the way voters decide who to vote for, 2008 has delivered the first truly 21st century presidential race. And election night promises to fortify the Internet's victory. While discussing with a friend an election night viewing party he's throwing, he announced there would be "televisions all over the place." "That's great," I said, "but just make sure the WiFi is working." Because this year, the laptop -- along with the array of Internet-connected mobile devices -- has replaced the television as the must-have election night device.

Of course, we want the TVs, too -- but mostly just to see how the results are covered, what the anchors are saying, when they call it, how the winners and losers react, and how crazy John King gets with his Magic Wall. For real time results, however, the Internet will be the go-to destination. A host of websites, starting with HuffPost, will make it possible for you to choose how and when you want to follow the results -- whether you want to follow them state-by-state and county-by-county or jump between the presidential race and hotly contested Senate and House showdowns. And do it interactively. And if you are a real election junkie, you can log on to each secretary of state's page and get the latest numbers even faster.

The clichéd putdown about the blogosphere is that it's just people spouting opinions, but this election has shown it's also about expertise and information -- collated, graphed, spread-sheeted, distilled, and cross-tabbed. Witness the rush to relevance of and its wonky numbers guy Nate Silver. Lately, it's been hard to go even a couple of hours without hearing someone say, "Nate Silver just wrote about that poll and here's what he says is wrong with it..." As the countdown to Election Day continues, here is a rough guide to some of the Internet's best offerings to help you fill the anxious, final hours of the campaign -- and some places to make sure you check out (or bookmark, if you are Old School like me) as the returns start to roll in on Tuesday.

First and foremost (and completely objectively, of course), I hope you'll check out HuffPost's exhaustive Election Night coverage. We'll be featuring up-to-the-minute stories, stats, and video, along with a host of interactive maps, electoral widgets, and fun (and surprisingly accurate) tools like the Intrade and Betfair election predictors. We'll also bring you intensive reporting and on-the-scene coverage of the vote, including any voting irregularities, from the battleground states by our OffTheBus' network of citizen journalists. And, of course, we'll have our usual top-flight commentary -- including a host of top bloggers who will be liveblogging the returns as they come in. Plus, a number of our international bloggers will be weighing in from various spots across the globe, letting us know the local reaction to the results.

Barack Obama's ascendance
« Reply #302 on: November 05, 2008, 10:54:36 AM »

President-elect Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, left, and Vice President-elect Joe Biden and his wife, Jill, wave to the crowd after Obama's acceptance speech at his election night party at Grant Park in Chicago, Tuesday night, Nov. 4, 2008.,0,6564040.photogallery
Barack Obama's ascendance

Re: Presidential Hopeful ...
« Reply #303 on: November 05, 2008, 05:00:26 PM »
is it fair to say that lawyers can be *gasp* decent human beings who have the ability to inspire millions of people?

'Tanned' Obama comment causes stir
« Reply #305 on: November 07, 2008, 08:21:05 AM »

Racism Rears Its Head in European Remarks on Obama
« Reply #306 on: November 11, 2008, 05:26:39 PM »
Washington Post ran an article today related to the issue:

BERLIN, Nov. 10 -- Europe erupted in cheers to celebrate Barack Obama's election as president, but the continent is seeing its share of insensitive racial blunders, too. Over the past week, a number of European lawmakers and journalists have made foot-in-mouth comments regarding America's black president-elect, suggesting that some otherwise respected public figures in Europe are far from enlightened on racial matters. The day after Obama's victory, a leading Austrian television journalist said on camera that he "wouldn't want the Western world to be directed by a black man." A Polish lawmaker stood up in Parliament and called the election result "the end of the white man's civilization."

One of the milder gaffes came from Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. On Thursday, during a visit to Moscow, he praised Obama for being "young, handsome and even suntanned." Berlusconi's remark caused a stir in Italy, as critics chided him for sounding like a fool. But the prime minister was unrepentant. "What's the problem? It was a compliment," he told journalists the next day. Anyone who did not get the joke, he added, was an "imbecile."

Some racist comments have come from people who have expressed such views before. "Africa Conquers the White House," read a headline on the Web site of the National Democratic Party of Germany, a political party that sympathizes with neo-Nazi groups. In an accompanying article, Jürgen Gansel, a party leader and an elected lawmaker in the German state of Saxony, blamed Obama's victory on "the American alliance of Jews and Negroes." Offensive opinions have also originated from the other end of the political spectrum. Die Tageszeitung, a Berlin newspaper that supports socialist and leftist causes, predicted Obama's election in June when it published a large front-page photo of the White House under the headline, "Uncle Barack's Cabin." The reference was to "Uncle Tom's Cabin," an anti-slavery book written by 19th-century author Harriet Beecher Stowe. But editors of the paper insisted they did not mean to imply that Obama would be an Uncle Tom, or a submissive slave. Rainer Metzger, a deputy editor, said the headline was satirical. "I'm sure 99 percent of our readers would understand it correctly," he told the German magazine Der Spiegel. "As for the rest, well, tough luck. You can't please everybody."

Yonis Ayeh, a board member with the Initiative of Black People in Germany, a group that criticized the Die Tageszeitung article when it was published, said racial prejudices are common, if not always blatantly expressed. "Sometimes you have people or groups who say, 'We are the left wing, we are the good ones, we are not racist,' " he said. "But it doesn't matter if you are right wing or left wing. It's not just the neo-Nazis and the skinheads." In Austria, Obama's win prompted a harsh, on-air reaction from a well-known journalist, Klaus Emmerich. "I think the Americans are still racists and they must be very badly off to so spectacularly -- and that has to be said, no doubt -- send a black man with a black, very good-looking and clever woman to the White House," he said Wednesday during a show on public television network ORF. After saying that he "wouldn't want the Western world to be directed by a black man," he added: "If you say that is a racist comment, you're right. Without a doubt."

Emmerich, 80, was once based in Washington and has also reported for German television and newspapers over a long career. Given a chance to retract his remarks, he declined. In a later interview with the Austrian newspaper Der Standard, he said that "blacks are not as politically civilized." He also called Obama dangerous and implicitly compared him to Hitler, citing his "rhetorical brilliance" and his ability to "appeal charismatically to people." Emmerich did not return a phone call seeking comment. Rainer Scheuer, a spokesman for ORF, said that the comments were "not acceptable" and that Emmerich was unlikely to be invited back to appear on the network anytime soon. In Poland, the lower house of Parliament heard a similar interpretation of Obama's election from Artur Górski, a legislator from the Law and Justice party. In a speech Wednesday, Górski called Obama "the black messiah of the new Left" and a "crypto-communist" who would undoubtedly prove a "disaster." He added: "Al-Qaeda is rubbing their hands with glee that the new president wants peace, not war." "This marks the end of the white man's civilization," he said. "America will soon pay a high price for this quirk of democracy." The Polish government and Górski's party later apologized for the outburst. Górski did, too, but said his remarks were not racist, just "political."

Carla Bruni Blasts Berlusconi's Obama Remark
« Reply #307 on: November 11, 2008, 05:32:45 PM »
French First Lady Carla Bruni said she was happy no longer to be an Italian citizen after Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi joked about US President-elect Barack Obama being "suntanned."

France's First Lady Carla Bruni has criticized Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi for joking about US President-elect Barack Obama's "suntan", and said she was glad to have given up her Italian citizenship. "When I hear Silvio Berlusconi ... joke about the fact that Obama is 'always tanned', it feels strange to me," she told le Journal du Dimanche newspaper in an interview published on Sunday. "Some people will no doubt put it down to humor, but often I find that I am pleased to have become French," she said. The Italian-born model and pop singer became a French national and gave up her Italian citizenship after she married French President Nicolas Sarkozy in February.

Berlusconi had said on Thursday that Obama, who will be the first African-American US president, was "handsome, young and also suntanned". Italy's left-wing opposition parties accused Berlusconi of bringing discredit on the nation with the quip. "He forgets that his statements cast doubt on the image of our country in the world," said Dario Franceschini, member of parliament for the center-left Democratic Party. Berlusconi responded by calling them "imbeciles" with no sense of humor. Meanwhile French politicians and celebrities had published a petition calling for positive discrimination in favour of people from ethnic minorities. The program "Oui, nous pouvons!" ("Yes, we can!") demands concrete political change to make the French ideal of equality reality for the millions of immigrants living in France. Bruni-Sarkozy did not sign the petition because of her status as wife of the president but she said she supported it in every respect.

"My husband is not Obama. But the French voted for the son of a Hungarian immigrant, whose father had an accent, whose mother was of Jewish origin, and his stance has always been to say that he's French although he comes from somewhere else." She continued: "He doesn't look like the traditional French elite but that didn't stop him. And, personally, I don't correspond to the profile of a first lady! I'm an artist, born Italian ... Of course, we are, him and me, of European stock, and that's easier." She said she hoped the "Obama effect" would also change French society.,1518,589416,00.html

Re: Carla Bruni Blasts Berlusconi's Obama Remark
« Reply #308 on: November 12, 2008, 04:04:00 PM »

Berlusconi had said on Thursday that Obama, who will be the first African-American US president, was "handsome, young and also suntanned". Italy's left-wing opposition parties accused Berlusconi of bringing discredit on the nation with the quip. "He forgets that his statements cast doubt on the image of our country in the world," said Dario Franceschini, member of parliament for the center-left Democratic Party. Berlusconi responded by calling them "imbeciles" with no sense of humor.

He should have apologized straight away. The best theory is that he can no longer control himself.  His words were loaded with dangerous ambiguity.

Re: Presidential Hopeful ...
« Reply #309 on: November 16, 2008, 03:43:45 PM »

Berlusconi had said on Thursday that Obama, who will be the first African-American US president, was "handsome, young and also suntanned". Berlusconi responded [to critics] by calling them "imbeciles" with no sense of humor.