We got to get a bat to swing at Obama

Paulie Brading

The Republican National Committee cold called me this morning. The call came from 503 395 3051. After greeting me, by my legal name, the caller stated, "We got to get a bat to swing at Obama." At that point I interrupted and stated, "I am voting for President Obama and hung up." In retrospect, I should have stayed on the call just to hear the entire pitch. I called the number and listened to a recording, "You have called the Republican National Committee." Why is the RNC calling the former Chair of the Jackson County Democrats and a former Obama delegate at the National Democratic convention in Denver? Is the RNC cold calling rural counties in Oregon looking for donors?

Most of us who hang around Blue Oregon have done some phone banking. We don't cold call Republicans until we are deep into the tail end of a fundraising or candidate campaign.

In 2008 we had a steady line of Republicans coming into the Jackson County Democratic office to change their voter registration from Republican to Democrat. More than one big chested man sobbed and said he had never voted for a Democrat before in his life. I suspect the same shift in voter registration may happen again.

I heard the chirp of the slow descent of the Republican Party on my phone this morning. The caller was very fortunate I hung up. For starters, he would have heard a tirade from me about the intrusion of the Republican Party into women's health care.

Here's hoping I am on the 'do not call list" at the RNC!

Your take?

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    Bizarre! The GOP has no shot at the presidential level in Oregon, behind by double digits. And do they really think registered Dems are going to give them money?? Possibly their data bases are messed up.

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    I get those calls occasionally too. I have a policy of wasting some of their time before I hang up. I even do their polls, which should have a choice: Press 5 for "You've got to be kidding me."

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      Poor choice of words, but not surprising:


      You could see baseball bats; you could see ropes; you could see pieces of chain. You knew why they were there… And you knew it was very soon going to happen. At that moment… I bowed my head, and I prayed. And I asked God to give me the strength to be nonviolent. I asked God to forgive them for whatever they might do. And I asked him to be with me.

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    Back in 2008, I signed up for former Senator Gordon Smith's campaign newsletter just to keep abreast of events. I have been on the Republican senatorial and other lists ever since. It's really interesting to get these letters and calls, and sometimes I even stay on the line for the "survey."

    My favorite call involved lots of very leading questions about Obamacare and NPR. After I explained that I was thrilled that my 21-year-old son had insurance and sincerely described my gratitude for NPR every day, we got to the donation part. At which point I got to explain that the agenda described really did not match my own and that I could not contribute at this time.

    I honestly hope our lists are better. Calling a former DNC member for a contribution--and spending 10 minutes on it--seems marvelously ineffective. Although it was highly entertaining. I just hoped that the workers at the other end are paid by the hour instead of a percentage of funds raised.

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    Not surprising to hear this. 1) R's seem to boil everything down to negative bumper sticker fodder. 2) Based on what was reported on Santorum's campaign calls in one of the primaries, they call anyone who has a valid land line, without regard to party affiliation. I agree on the one hand you want to hear what they have to say. On the other, it's hard to hear without your blood pressure raising several points.

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      Based on what I hear from the teabaggers on the net and in public statements, their limited repertoire of campaign slogans consists of name-calling: "socialist, communist, muslim, atheist, God, guts, and guns, etc." One of their more popular bumper stickers of late recently reported was "Don't Re-Nig in 2012" Real inspiring. Fear, hatred, and racism are motivators for their base. Apparently they believe not much more than that is needed to motivate people to vote. Real concerns about their income and health care security, the water they drink, the air they breathe, the protection of the land they live on, the educational opportunities of their children. None of that matters.

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    Has everyone missed the most interesting -- and disturbing -- part of this post? The use of the "bat" metaphor is a racist dog whistle. It's a reference to vigilante justice, putting the uppity black man in his place. It shows once again the core a racism that's a natural, almost effortless, part of the 21st Century Republicanism.

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      I didn't miss it. I haven't missed the "not-so-dog-whistle" references either, like the California GOP official's invitation on Facebook to murder the "f----in' Ni----r, and his wife and children." When 50% of the GOP membership reportedly believe our President is secret Muslim and not a citizen with a faked birth certificate, it's a transparent substitute for his mixed race status. When Rick Santorum stands by and says nothing this past week, when one of his supporters at a gun range points to the target and yells out, "Pretend it's Obama" then you know the violent hatred that is in the soul of the GOP towards any person of color being a leader of our country. When GOP sympathizers stand up and defend the unprovoked killing of an unarmed African-American boy by an armed and hateful vigilante and say the young boy "deserved it," then you know what kind of culture predominates in the GOP. I would say, lacking some kind of massive conversion experience, there's no hope for the GOP being anything that approaches fundamental decency and humanity.

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    Just saw an interesting interview with Bill Press, the author of The Obama Hate Machine. (Pardon me if I am the last to hear of him!) He said that, by this time in Bush's presidency, there were approx. 5 books about him that were negative. There are 65 books about Pres. Obama so far with negative tones.

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      Bill Press used to be one of the "liberal" pundits on CNN in the earlier days of the "talking heads.

      The right wing can't stand it when they aren't in power. They hated Bill Clinton. But having a black man in power as an American president is totally intolerable. They call him worse than Hitler and Stalin because he passed a moderate Republican health plan invented by the Heritage Foundation, and placed into law by their prospective nominee.

      The GOP leadership doesn't just attack the policies of the President, they make a point of disrespecting the person in order to please their base. When Joe Wilson shouted "liar" at the President in his speech before Congress in unprecedented crass disrespect and breath of etiquette, it didn't happen by accident. He was doing it to please his constituents. And the recent circulated e-mail by a Bush appointed Federal judge in Montana sending around a disgusting bigoted e-mail whose entire intent was to disrespect the President. Why did he do it? He admitted it was racist and inappropriate but excused himself by calling it a "joke." He did it because there is a license and an expectation to do it in the GOP.

      In my view John L. Lewis is a living saint, a hero of the civil rights movement, born in a sharecropper family, who despite undergoing tremendous suffering and challenge in the struggle for human rights, maintains a generous and loving attitude towards all people. About two years ago he was on his way towards entering the Capitol building with an African American colleague when a Tea Party demonstration was going on . Some of the demonstrators proceeded to spit on him and his companion and call them racially bigoted insults. I think this incident speaks everything about what has happened to the GOP of today.

      My father was a life long Republican, until about two weeks before his death in 2004 when in disgust and sadness he changed his registration. The Republican Party of today is not your parents or grandparents' Republican Party.

      Today's GOP has revealed itself in all its poison, with its disrespect of women, its contempt for the legitimacy of democratic process in electing an African American president, and its cultivation of anonymous billionaires to fund Super PAC organizations to disseminate slander on the President and other Democratic Party leaders, not even allowing a law of financial disclosure to pass the Senate. I am hoping their standing will fall so low that out of a sense of shame and redemption, honorable women and men will rise in their ranks to restore the party to some semblance of dignity, integrity,civility, and rationality.

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    Paulie, have you contacted the Secret Service? That sounds like promotion of violence against the president.

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