« Why We Have Trials | Main | Non-Super-Tuesday Open Thread »

February 05, 2008

Comments

Similarly, while her immigrant-bashing might help her tactically, it’s a long-term loser because it solidifies the view that (1) legal process is something one must earn; and (2) immigrants are bad. On the taxes front, her bashing of Obama’s payroll tax suggestion falls into this same category.

Pretty much sums up my personal disgustipation with Clinton. She combines what I think are the worst elements of left wing ideology with a healthy smattering of bad ideas from the right.

An Obama nomination I think would not only be good for the Democratic party, but in the long run, for the Republican party as well, because it would force it to stop living in the past and come up with some new ideas and improved narratives of its own - if I hear the word "Reagan" one more time from one of the Republican candidates during this primary cycle, I'm going to puke.

"Katherine recently posted on Clinton’s distasteful support for deporting immigrants who have committed crimes without legal process."

This may be unwelcome, in which case I apologize, and I hesitate to mention it, but might I suggest that this would be better as "Katherine recently posted on Clinton’s distasteful support for deporting, without legal process, immigrants who have committed crimes"?

As it stands you're saying that there are people "who have committed crimes without legal process." Which doesn't quite make sense.

It might be better yet to phrase it that "Katherine recently posted on Clinton’s distasteful support for deporting, without legal process, immigrants who have been accused of crimes"?

I agree with the whole premise of your post, Publius. EJ Dionne's column today taps into the same themes - Obama offers the promise of liberation from the politics of the past. Hillary just promises to prosecute the old fights with more energy.

But I fear that we're not going to get our chance to break out of the old model. There's enormous instability in the polls, and I don't think Obama is going to make it over the bar. The power of incumbency behind Hillary is too powerful. And Obama didn't have enough time to make his case after SC and before Super Tuesday. In many ways, the compressed calendar is the same situation that NH voters faced after Iowa. And their response was to revert back to the "safe choice."

The latest SurveyUSA polls out of swing states look really bad. Not sure how much stock to place in them, but HRC could definitely sweep tonight.

Well, then publius would have also had to add something like "excluding fourth generation immigrants from Sweden" and so on, which would have made it a rather long sentence, lol.

And their response was to revert back to the "safe choice."

How'd that work out in 2004? Seriously, though, I'm not sure that's what happened - what about Hillary crying, the "ganging up" incident at the debate, and probably just a general reluctance to have the race settled too quickly as factors?

Not sure how much stock to place in them, but HRC could definitely sweep tonight.

Since none of the Democratic primaries are winner-take-all, she can't really "sweep" - win the popular vote in every state that votes, perhaps, but it would take a huge Clinton surge to clinch the nomination or even come close. If she does win every state, it'll definitely help her in the spin war that follows, but I doubt that will happen, and if Obama comes close in states where Clinton had 20%+ leads as of two weeks ago, I think it's very possible the press reports it as "Obama comes close, Hillary underperforms".

A quick FWIW.

I lived in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, for years a bastion of Republican power. We finally elected a Democrat to Congress in 2004, although she is about as centrist as they come.

This is also a state that is very safely in Obama's corner. He should win here with a much greater margin than Clinton will in NY, despite her Chicago connections.

It is also an open primary state where you can vote in whichever party's primary that you want.

All that being said, when I voted this morning it was more crowded than I have ever seen it for a primary, and the six (not a big sample) voters ahead of and behind me all asked for ballots for the Democratic primary.

Also, apparently Obama won the American voters in Indonesia vote 75-25.

PS, can anyone explain that although Edwards did not have any delegates on the ballot, Richardson did.

Reading through the last three posts has helped me understand my reaction to this primary. Today, in California, I'll be voting for Obama. That became inevitable when Edwards dropped out. I've seen Clintons, I didn't like the first one (above all else because of his cave-in on welfare), and I don't want another one.

But by voting for Obama, I don't say I'm supporting Obama. I'm supporting values of democracy, some equity, some decency and more rule of law through a blunt instrument that is available to me. Oh yes, Obama's a good one. But Presidents are what we, the people, make them. Should we be so fortunate as to get a President Obama, we'll have to stay on his case and push for a different country. Nothin' else to do.

Oh my LARD this is the finest example of the analogy being much more confusing than the thing you're trying to explain via the analogy. I think it's so clear that it doesn't need explaining - "without legal process" should not be used either as policy or as jingo, ever, and nuff said. But then that part about Adobe pdfs just made me dizzy. I know I don't visit this site for the dumbed down version, but DANG!

gary - the legal process point refers to the deportation, not the crime.

phoebe - i'll work on my analogies :)

You know what I want? An opportunity to cast a primary vote that matters. F***ing Super-Tuesday.

BTW, why has everyone, particularly in the MSM, been saying that Mitt is dead in the water? McCain may be the front-runner now -- I can't really say, as I don't trust the conventional wisdom on this point -- but last I checked there were, in technical parlance, an imperial crapton of delegates up for grabs today. What gives?

"gary - the legal process point refers to the deportation, not the crime."

Yes, I was perfectly aware of what you meant to say.

That's why I suggested the change to make it actually mean that, since it's not what you actually wrote.

What you wrote is that there are people "who have committed crimes without legal process."

The point of my suggestion is to change that to what you mean. Intent doesn't change meaning. Grammar does.

In that sentence, "legal process," in fact, does refer to "crimes," and not to "deportation."

Your intent does not and will not change that. Only recasting the sentence, if you choose, will.

Thus my suggestion, thinking you might want to write what you meant, rather than what you wrote, small point as it is.

But if you'd rather I never make such a suggestion, that's fine and understandable. I only mean to help.

When I see someone get a sentence wrong, so that it clearly means something different than what they intended, part of me figures the writer might be interested in getting the sentence right, and communicating what they meant.

So I want to help. But often people just feel defensive.

So 99.999% of the time, I say nothing. It's a leap of faith to venture a suggestion if one doesn't know the person won't take it, for some reason, as a personal attack.

Your description is also unintentionally misleading in a way that has nothing to do with grammar: you refer to trials for crimes, leaving the reader with the impression that Clinton proposed deportation upon accusation of a crime. But Clinton was referring to immigrants who had already been proved to have committed a crime -- the process she wanted to deny was a deportation hearing, not a criminal trial.

She also may have been quoted out of context, as the Sun article you link to quotes her campaign staff as explaining that Clinton was referring to a specific bill that would deny a hearing only for felonies and certain misdemeanors, not all crimes. That doesn't make it a good bill, but it is less sweeping than Katherine implied, and much less than you implied.

trilobite, I was perfectly clear: she doesn't actually support this as policy. She just thinks "no legal process for bad people!" is a good campaign line, which reflects an assumption about the electorate that has an effect on policy & shows that there is no reason whatsoever to trust her any more than her husband on immigration, criminal justice, human rights, etc.

Gary:

While I agree that your proposed rewording would clarify the sentence, and while I don't claim to be an expert in grammar, I'm not aware of a rule that says that publius' sentence must be read and understood in the way you suggest. As it is, the phrasing is ambiguous, but somehow I managed to understand what he meant without even pausing to consider the ambiguity of the sentence, which didn't even occur to me until you pointed it out.

Further, nothing in publius' response to you gave me the impression that he was responding angrily to a personal attack.

BTW, why has everyone, particularly in the MSM, been saying that Mitt is dead in the water? McCain may be the front-runner now -- I can't really say, as I don't trust the conventional wisdom on this point -- but last I checked there were, in technical parlance, an imperial crapton of delegates up for grabs today. What gives?

Many of the Republican primaries are "winner take all," thus it will be insufficient for Romney to finish a close second.

"I'm not aware of a rule"

It's my impression diagraming a sentence isn't taught much in elementary schools these days, but I really have no idea.

Since this isn't a blog dedicated to writing, it would be excessive for me to discuss this further. I'll leave it to someone else to pick up, if they like, or not.

"Further, nothing in publius' response to you gave me the impression that he was responding angrily to a personal attack."

I had no such impression, as well.

I finally went and voted for Obama in the primary, for many of the reasons cited by posters and commenters here.

If that hadn't persuaded me the three robo-calls I got from the Clinton campaign today, two from Hillary and one from Bill, would have. Do those things help or hurt?

Incidentally, I wish to go on record as saying that I will tally who "won" or "lost," when the results come in, by delegate count. Popular votes are irrelevant, save insofar as they affect delegate count.

So if one candidate wins the popular vote in 16 out of 24 states and American Samoa, or somesuch, but the other candidate wins a majority of delegates, I'm going to say that the one who walks away with the most delegates "won" Super-Duper Tuesday.

Of course, if that's Clinton, and I can make a case that Obama picked up almost as many delegates, and has momentum, I'll make that case. But I won't claim he "won."

Neither, if Clinton picks up the most popular votes, will I agree that she "won." I believe President Gore can back me up on this.

i had no idea I was personally attacking - i thought i was just clarifying. jeez

"i had no idea I was personally attacking - i thought i was just clarifying. jeez"

Who were you personally attacking? Where?

Thank you for the post. As a black man they lost me with their shucking and jiving about trying to "blacken" up Obama. But even if they hadn't done that, as an immigration attorney, I was on the fence because of Bill Clinton's immigration bill which has torn apart families needlessly. Once I read this about Hillary Clinton's comments I was certain that not only would I not vote for her but I'd make sure that all of my colleagues knew about this.

Gary:
Who were you personally attacking? Where?

Basically, it was your turn to be unclear. In response to publius, you wrote:

So I want to help. But often people just feel defensive.

So 99.999% of the time, I say nothing. It's a leap of faith to venture a suggestion if one doesn't know the person won't take it, for some reason, as a personal attack.

Basically, I understood this (and, apparently, so did publius, though I don't pretend to speak for him) to mean that you thought publius took your prior correction as a "personal attack." Since nobody accused anyone of attacking anyone on this front, that seemed to be the only context in which the aforementioned paragraph seemed to made sense. (Otherwise, why bring up personal attacks? At this point, I can only assume that you were trying to prevent anyone from perceiving your correction as a personal attack, though it seems to have had exactly the opposite effect...)

It's my impression diagraming a sentence isn't taught much in elementary schools these days, but I really have no idea.

Back when I was in grade school, I'm sure it was taught, but that was a LOOOOONG time ago, and I'll be the first to admit that English was never my strongest subject. I'm too much of a math geek for that.

But since this thread seems to have died anyway, let's try rephrasing publius' sentence a little bit. Suppose he simply wrote:

"Katherine recently posted on Clinton’s distasteful support for deporting immigrants without legal process."

Would that be incorrect or ambiguous? Would you read that such that "without legal process" modified "immigrants" rather than "deporting?" It's been a long time since I've parsed subject vs. direct object, particularly in a compound sentence such as this one, so I'm honestly not sure.

But I think what it boils down to is that many of us (myself included) write the same way that we speak, which often isn't technically proper. (And, for some reason, people generally give more leeway with spoken English than they do with written English.)

"Basically, I understood this (and, apparently, so did publius, though I don't pretend to speak for him) to mean that you thought publius took your prior correction as a 'personal attack.'"

But if you read the words you quote, I say absolutely nothing of the kind whatsoever. I simply mentioned why I so rarely offer a suggestion in response to a miswording.

But I'm not surprised that the reaction that I mentioned so often occurred, occurred, insofar as an explanation of how I'd never want such a suggestion to be taken as a personal attack, was taken by you -- and publius? -- absolutely bizarrely as some kind of personal attack.

I write: "It's a leap of faith to venture a suggestion if one doesn't know the person won't take it, for some reason, as a personal attack."

And that's taken as a personal attack? Are you kidding? That's simply not reading what's written. Words have meaning; they're not supposed to inspire free association responses.

"At this point, I can only assume that you were trying to prevent anyone from perceiving your correction as a personal attack"

Hello!

It probably doesn't help that, since publius interacts so little in comments, I have very little sense of publius as a person, and presumably vice versa.

"Katherine recently posted on Clinton’s distasteful support for deporting immigrants without legal process."

Would that be incorrect or ambiguous?

No, that's fine.

"But I think what it boils down to is that many of us (myself included) write the same way that we speak, which often isn't technically proper."

Nobody should give a flying fart as to what's "technically proper," unless they're grading papers, or under similar unusual circumstance.

What matters is clarity.

That requires care, not being "technically proper."

was taken by you -- and publius? -- absolutely bizarrely as some kind of personal attack.

To be clear, I didn't think you were attacking anyone. I thought that you thought that publius was (wrongly) perceiving your correction as an attack. (Talk about an unclear sentence on my part!)

Basically, I perceived the exchange something like this:

publius: "Ambiguously phrased sentence X."
Gary: "Your sentence X is phrased ambiguously, and would perhaps be better phrased as Y"
publius: "My ambiguously phrased sentence meant Y."
Gary: "I realize you meant Y, but you actually wrote X. P.S. I wasn't attacking you."
publius/tgirsch: "Huh? Who said you were attacking anyone?"

Of course, if this discussion were happening over beers instead of over the intertubes, there almost certainly wouldn't have been any misunderstanding to begin with... :)

Nobody should give a flying fart as to what's "technically proper," unless they're grading papers

Agreed!

The comments to this entry are closed.

Blog powered by Typepad