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May 02, 2008


I take it there aren't any subtitles on the DVD?

From ABC news:
When "The War Room" came out folks interpreted Kantor to be impugning Indiana residents.
A 1995 story in the Sydney Morning Herald said that "As for the good folk of Indiana, they are still recovering from the 1993 documentary War Room...’It showed Mr Kantor bursting in on election night to tell other campaign staffers that incredibly, Mr Clinton was doing well even in Republican Indiana. 'And those people are s---!' he declared breathlessly."

As far as I can tell, no subtitles.

ak: yeah, that is what he says, but it is unclear who he says it about. I said why I didn't think it made sense to think he was talking about Indiana voters; apparently, the author of that story disagrees.

Hilzoy: I have a hearing impairment, so I watch almost everything with subtitles turned on. A fact most people don't realize is that captioning is encoded within the video signal itself, and is usually preserved when copied. Even if the DVD itself doesn't have subtitles, you can often get them by turning on the Closed Captioning decoding on your TV, if the original content was ever captioned.

This often has some very humorous results: for instance, when watching amateur music videos that use video clips of commercial content, frequently the spoken dialogue of the original--irrelevant to the music video--will appear captioned on the screen even in a fourth- or fifth-generation VHS copy.

Try this and let me know if there's any captioning hidden in the video stream on this DVD. I'd lay even money that there is. I have multiple older DVDs that don't have an option in the menu to enable subtitles, but that DO have the CC encoding if you turn on the setting on your TV.

Also, it's worth noting that the subtitle track on DVDs (which is text information stored on the DVD that is digitally overlaid on the video before the stream is output to the TV) is a completely different animal from closed captioning, which consists of encoded data transmitted on the vertical blanking interval which is then decoded by the TV.

I didn't read any of the wstories about this because I don't really care what anyone said over twenty years ago,

No, Hilzoy, this means that the Clinton campaign is elitist. Don't you see? Because Kantor said something about Indianans two decades ago. Unless he didn't. In which case... Oh wait.

Seriously, what a tedious slog this campaign has become.

Hilzoy, I agree with your take. (I have the DVD, and I'll check it for closed captioning when I get home later tonight.)

This is a really dirty attack, and I'd like to know who's responsible.

There's no such thing as an "Indianan". People who live in Indiana are "Hoosiers".

this guy seems to at least know what happened with the audio.

But he can't have made it, because it is actually Clintons Rovian Strategy at work.

Over to the next substantial discussion: Did Hillary say "God bless us" or "God blessed us" in her interview with O'Reilly? Because she will say anything to get elected. Anything.

Atrios finds this clip crap and calls this a dumb fake controversy

So inquiring minds want to know: what's it with hilzoy and obsidian wings lurching from one fake controversy, one Clinton conspiracy theory to another, day after day? Have you become the keyboard kommandos of the left?

Ari, hilzoy's point is that this is a fake controversy and she was very open to the idea that the WVWVn one was too.

I dithered aback and fortha dn have come to the conclusion that the WVWV is engaged in voter surpression.

The Daily Kos diarist is partly right: fake outrage incidents can be used to cover or rationalizwe away the real ones. Of which HRC has done so many that I've lost count.

The kantor thing is a smear. The WVWV, well I don't know. But the fact remains she has earned her bad repubgtaion all on her own baseed on her bad behavior and the bad behavior used by her staff and surrogates.. No one would make excuses for her if she was a man.

This is is a good summsry of what is wrong with Clinton:

Twice this week now, Hillary Clinton has stood there smiling like the Cheshire Cat as the governor of North Carolina used the word "pansy" and then as a union leader in the same state, who more famously referred to her "testicular fortitude", went on to inveigh that Hillary was the only thing that stood between the good and God-fearing people of North Carolina and the "Gucci-wearing, latte-drinking, self-centred, egotistical people that have damaged our lifestyle." Clinton, according to the report linked to here, "smiled sheepishly before breaking into a nervous laugh."

As campaign moments go, these may not be up there with the Iraq-withdrawal debate or, Lord knows, truly important things like Barack Obama's failure to wear a flag lapel pin. But they're worth marking all the same.

These are explicitly right-wing tactics and talking points. Those of you across the pond may be unfamiliar with a very famous soundbite from the 2004 presidential campaign, which featured in a commercial that ran early that year in Iowa and was produced by the anti-tax group Club for Growth.

In the ad, a husband and wife discuss Howard Dean's plan to repeal the Bush tax cuts. The happy couple join forces to say the following: ''Howard Dean should take his tax-hiking, government-expanding, latte-drinking, sushi-eating, Volvo-driving, New York Times-reading, body-piercing, Hollywood-loving, left-wing freak show back to Vermont, where it belongs.''

It was garbage, but at least it stood to reason, under the logic of this country's political climate, that a ferociously right-wing group (Club for Growth is known for finding even many Republicans to be "soft" on the tax question, backing right-wing anti-tax acolytes against a few Republican congressional incumbents) would employ such rhetoric against a liberal, Democratic candidate.

And now we are greeted by the spectacle of one Democratic campaign - no, not directly using, but getting a nice little happy kick out of seeing almost exactly the same rhetoric, right down to the choice of beverage, used against a fellow Democrat.

For good measure, we get a bonus reference to pansies, who, if we take the word to refer broadly (and derogatorily) to homosexuals, support Clinton in far greater numbers than they support Obama, a fact that somehow did not inspire the candidate to admonish her endorser in any way.

Cards on table: my regular readers know that I back Obama. I continue to be amused by the commenters who think they're somehow outsmarting me by "exposing" my Obama bias, even though I am paid to write opinion pieces and I make no secret of it.

But what people may not know, because I haven't really gone into it, is that up until about the Nevada caucus, I was perfectly happy with all three leading Democratic candidates. I preferred Obama then, too, and I never really had much use for Edwards, but my attitude was that whichever of the three proved the most formidable would ultimately be fine with me.

I'd always liked Hillary. Those who know my work going back a few years know that I was based in New York when she first ran for the Senate, and that I gave her largely positive coverage then and wrote a book about her race that was certainly more sympathetic than not. (Here's the Amazon page; I tried, so as to make life easier on my merry detractors, to link to a mostly negative review from the New Republic, but their archives are broken. You might be able to find it elsewhere; it's by Michael Grunwald.)

But this latest episode frankly sickens me, and it really ought to sicken you, too, no matter which Democrat you support. Republicans and conservatives have for years used this kind of smear language against Democrats. It has perverted our political discourse for 30 years. It is not clever or tables-turning or ironic or anything of the sort for one Democratic campaign to be involved in sending these kinds of smoke signals about another. It is repulsive.

But it's been all too typical. Clinton had the opportunity to say, during that ABC debate, something like: "You know, I don't think the fact that Senator Obama served on a board will Bill Ayers some 25 years after the Weather Underground ceased to exist is relevant. Right-wing websites can traffic in that, and the mainstream media can if you want to. We Democrats don't do that sort of thing." But she piled on, even disingenuously implying that Ayers made comments "about" September 11 just because some remarks he'd made about his past happened to appear in the New York Times on September 11, 2001.

Micheal Tomasky

It is not normal in Demcratic politics for one candidte to make the demeaning not only of her opponent but the demeaning of the majority of Democratic vboters the nuts and bolts of the campaign.

I'm sick of people making excuses for her. It is a decandent degraded distortion of feminsim to have a lower standard for a female candidate.

aki: yeah, my entire point was that this was fake. I posted it because I thought something was off about it when I first saw it, and at the time, people were still in the OMG Kantor Hates Indiana!!! phase, and I thought: I should check this out, because if it's false, it's vile and should be exposed.

Is this garbage actually getting any media attention? I'm not really surprised that youtube has a bunch of nutty, distorted video attacks on Clinton (or any other candidate for that matter). And I probably shouldn't be surprised if our elite media overlords acting at the advanced emotional age of two fixated on this story, but this is one of the more ridiculous attacks I've seen. Ditto for the "God Bless" comment.

I mean, I'm sure that nutpicking for crazy opinions on these non-issues would be very enlightening (think of how much we could learn! could it be that there are crazy or stupid people writing on the internet?!), but since they seem to have gotten less air time than the fungus growing on Obama's former minister's left big toenail, I'm not sure why anyone should care.

I understood it to be "We're even ahead in Indiana, and those people have the worst taste of anyone!" Which would make a lot of sense to me, since I grew up there. But the director's explanation makes a lot more sense. And we're supposed to believe that Clinton's campaign officers are saying stuff like this in front of documentary filmmakers?

doretta, I was kidding. And wonkie, I was kidding. Sorry for not being funnier, but I was making fun of the whole situation.

hilzoy: kudos for being out front on both this and the Ft. Bragg barracks squalor stories. seems you were ahead of the national media on both and both are now getting significant MSM attention.

Lasering in on Ft. Bragg seems to have shifted the national conversation to the benefit of the troops and I commend you for your efforts (as usual).

And, though it goes without saying, glad you're home safe.

Just out. Video of Obama singing (with friend)

Thanks, xanax. ;)

Sorry, Ari, I'm probably humor impaired about this stuff.

the majority of Democratic voters are not social liberals and fiscal conservatives no matter how much Obama supporters who fit that very definition believe it is the case.

I have little use for the latte liberal tag since I am one, but until I see a strong condemnation by Tomasky, TAP or other liberal bloggers of the virulent screeds being directed at the working class component of the party I am not going to worry about the elitist tag. If Obama surrogates pushing the racist meme is perfectly acceptable then calling out Clinton surrogates for pushing the elitist meme is hypocritical at best.

Posts like this appear much to often on so called progressive sites:

"Lower class whites are exactly that, lower class, for a reason. They're superstitious bigots possessed of a myopic, distorted world view informed by a lifetime of anti-intellectualism combined with alcohol and nicotine abuse. They're ill equipped starting at birth to advance very far in the world and their families pile on the generational shortcomings starting with that first breath. It's unfortunate to have to even appeal to them as a class. A charitable public servant would differ with me, claiming he/she wants to provide the tools for them to climb out of their current caste. However there is an entrenched recidivism, the subtle and almost imperceptible voices of Budweiser, Marlboro and the KKK, constantly calling to them. "Come baaak, come baaack home.... We have your sister here and she's lonely........."

Like where, exactly?

"Like where, exactly?"

Somewhere Google doesn't go.

But, hey, someone, we don't know who, said, we don't know where, something like this -- there's no evidence, but it's alleged -- at some time -- we don't know when -- so we should all be very concerned.

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