Sunday, May 31, 2009

The Daily Strike-5/31/09-GM/Lines of Attack

Good evening and welcome to the Daily Strike this fine Sunday. As usual, it was Sunday talk shows that dominated the news cycle, so let's get to it.

GM: First I have to talk about the expected, but still devastating news that GM is going to file for bankruptcy tomorrow morning. The nation's largest auto manufacturer, and as many news sources have pointed out, a longtime symbol of American industry, is about to collapse. This hits home a lot harder for me than when Lehman Brothers or AIG failed. This company rose and fell along with the economic well-being of the country itself. It's collapse is a final verdict on what 30 years of hands-off economic policy, outsourcing and general disregard for blue collar workers has done to the American economy. The news, however, is no political talking point for Obama either. Obama invested a lot of American money and political capital in trying to keep GM solvent. For two months now, the government has been a majority owner of GM stock. 20,000 GM workers will likely lose their jobs immediately, and the ripple effect will spread throughout the rest of the economy (for example, 30,000 car dealers might lose their jobs). We'll have more about this tomorrow.

SUNDAY TALK SHOWS: The talk shows today were dominated, expectantly, by President Obama's nomination of Sonia Sotomayor for the United States Supreme Court. Perhaps the biggest foot in the mouth moment came from Sunday regular Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC). Graham, commenting on Sotomayor's now infamous comments that she could make better decisions as a "wise Latina," asked whether Sotomayor "really understands what America is about." Talk about racial overtones. I think someone who grew up as a poor Latina in the South Bronx, and who, through hard work and dedication, is on the cusp of the United States Supreme Court understands what America is about far more than Lindsay Graham. Graham isn't exactly your Rush Limbaugh-style Republican either. In fact, Limbaugh used to refer to Graham as "Lindsay Grahamnesty" for his support of immigration reform. If even people like Lindsay Graham are resorting to this type of attack, it's clear that the Republican is not helping itself with Hispanic voters.

It was good to see liberals come to Sotomayor's defense. Chuck Schumer, Democrat from New York, defended Sotomayor's comment, saying wisely that we would hope that not all Supreme Court justices have ice in their veins. Newly Democratic Senator Arlen Specter defended her distinguished career. New York Times Columnist Paul Krugman even ventured to suggest that her controversial comments were made in just. I hope Democrats are not afraid to stick their necks out for Sotomayor. It's not only morally right to defend a nominee with impeccable credentials and valuable experience, it's a good political showcase as well. I think someone like Sotomayor, as The Big Picture said yesterday, can help us win the much larger argument of whether the court should be in the hands of a narrow elite protecting the interests of the privileged, or someone who understands and will promote true justice.

REPUBLICAN RESPONSE: Just when you think Republicans may have been done throwing things against the wall hoping something would stick, they prove us wrong again! Last night, Obama took his wife to New York City to see a Broadway production of "Joe Turner's Come and Gone." The President, (according to some amazing on-the-scene reporting from Aunt Strike), got a standing ovation from the crowd. I think most Americans would feel it acceptable for the President to see a play on a Saturday night. But the drones at the RNC just couldn't resist. They sent out a press release criticizing the President for attending a play while GM is set to announce bankruptcy on Monday. Really, this is the best you've got? Would it help the country for him to sit in the White House like a hermit and show the country that the best thing to do is be remorseful? Are voters going to walk into the booth in 2010 thinking about a night Obama spent at a play? Sometimes I wonder why people at the RNC get paid. But that's just me.

That's it for tonight. See you in the morning for the Weekly Strike!

No comments:

Post a Comment