Tuesday, February 07, 2012


Many people have pointed out the racism of Pete Hoekstra's "Debbie Spend-It-Now" Super Bowl ad, but now we're being warned -- by Chris Hayes on Rachel Maddow's show last night, by Mistermix today -- that we could be doing just what Hoekstra wants us to do, by making him (in the eyes of right-wingers, at least) a victim of liberalism and "political correctness." Yes, that's worth noting -- Politico reports that Hoekstra is claiming a serious uptick in fund-raising since the ad went public. (All this is happening even as we get yet another opportunity to point out the Hoekstra team's racism -- we're learning that the HTML code on Hoekstra's site refers to the Asian woman in the ad as "yellow girl.")

I see the point Hayes and Mistermix are making -- but for once I'm optimistic. This seems to be a year when the public is becoming sick of the GOP rage machine and might be turning back to Democrats for a little uplift and comity (and a little common decency).

What Hoekstra's doing is certainly going to work for him with his fellow Republicans -- although why he's bothering with it when he's all but assured of the GOP Senate nomination in Michigan I don't know. Going into the general election, however, I think the racism itself could be a liability. Even people who usually shrug off or overlook racist dog whistles (including barely coded ones) seem as if they might be sick of the all-attacks-all-the-time style of the Republicans; they seem as if they might vote against divide-and-conquer politics this year. So why not point out the attempts to divide? If voters are getting fed up with the vitriolic, maybe it's a good idea to shine the light on the vitriol.


c u n d gulag said...

I, on the other hand, would like to get the message out that the last thing anyone should accuse "Hock-A-Loogie" of being, is racist.

After all, who voted for EVERY free-trade agreement that outsourced American jobs to Asia?

As for the "Yellow Girl" reference, I suppose we should be thankful that he didn't call her 'A Slant-eyed C*nt."

BH said...

At the risk of possibly giving O more credit than he's due: if there is some vitriol fatigue out there, some of it may well be due to O's own (sometimes frustrating) refusal to engage in high-flown rhetorical combativeness. At a minimum, he may deserve some credit for anticipating that the public mood would become less receptive to such fireworks, whether or not he has any causal relationship to the mood change.