Thursday, June 28, 2007

Coulter-Edwards Battle Continues

Before I say what I want to say, I have already stated that I have little use for Ann Coulter's style in an earlier post. That same post was the result of some inappropriate comments made by the commentator, directed at John Edwards. I condemned them then, and still do now.

That was in March. But here in June, we see that the Edwards campaign is refusing to allow the feud to drop. Why? Because her comment was effectively used as a fund raising tool, for a campaign that has little chance to walk on its own. In short the campaign is in trouble without the controversy.

After the initial installment of this political soap opera, the Edwards campaign attempted to cash in on the whole sordid affair, and did. But one must now wonder if that cash flow has dried up, based on the latest incident where Elizabeth Edwards called into a Hardball segment and attempted to fuel a new flow of campaign dollars, by attacking Coulter for something else she said recently.

Mrs. Edwards called on Coulter to stop personally attacking her husband. Here is an article that reports this, but let's highlight something, shall we?

From the article:

On ABC's "Good Morning America" on Monday, Coulter was asked about a March speech in which she used a gay slur to refer to Edwards.

"If I'm going to say anything about John Edwards in the future, I'll just wish he had been killed in a terrorist assassination plot," Coulter said Monday, picking up on remarks made by HBO's Bill Maher. Maher suggested in March that "people wouldn't be dying needlessly" if Vice President Dick Cheney had been killed in an insurgent attack in Afghanistan.


Most people that are getting up in arms about this latest Coulter statement are not going to tell you about the context in which her statement was made. And from the Edwards campaign site we see just that. Note the statement made by Coulter has not been assigned the slightest amount of context (please note that the emphasis is placed by the Edwards staff):

This Monday, Ann Coulter took her pattern of personal attacks to a new level. On national television she said that rather than hurling more homophobic slurs, "If I'm gonna say anything about John Edwards in the future, I'll just wish he had been killed in a terrorist assassination plot."


On the very same web page this is highlighted, you will note a plea for donations based on this deliberate deception (emphasis is by the Edwards staff here, as well):

It's up to us to raise the dialogue by taking our message straight to voters. Let's show that Ann Coulter style politics will never carry the day. We have 4 days to reach $9 million. Please donate today


Now, if you hate Republicans and think that the end justifies the means, you will see nothing particularly wrong with this. You might even think this is a brilliant strategy. You may even want to invoke the names of Bush, Cheney, and Rove in your critique, and maybe even Halliburton just for good measure. But if you are guilty of this kind of thing, you may also want to listen this.

But left-wing talking points aside, what we see here is a campaign that has no chance, trying to keep the Coulter feud going for the sole purpose of raising money. Ann isn't helping herself, mind you. In fact, she should stop giving them ammunition by opening her big mouth. But Edwards (being the former ambulance chasing lawyer that he once was) knows a marketing ploy when he sees it. And of course his wife does too, which is why she called the show.

The Edwards campaign is not the only one guilty here, because we know the call was planned. Matthews had prior knowledge of it. John Edwards said that this was his wife's idea, she did on her own. But, I don't buy it. It has all the makings of a calculated strategy.

Matthews has the lowest rated of all the cable news shows, because most objective people see his bias for what it truly is. He is a partisan hack that has very little journalistic talent. (Here is one clip that you won't see in an MSNBC promo, the man in it illustrates my point quite well.) In fact if you notice the ratings week after week, you will see the majority of the MSNBC line-up consistently at the bottom.

NBC, in general, has a credibility problem (as is evidenced by their plummeting ratings on the evening newscast). Brian Williams continues to lose more viewers than Katie Couric. But Matthews never had many viewers to begin with, so his base viewership of Democratic attack dogs is remaining constant at a level we can term, very damned few. MSNBC is a loss leader for NBC's news division, but that is now starting to carry over to the nightly news. How long will it be before we see some changes, is anyone's guess. But if you own stock in GE, never fear. I hear Days Of Our Lives is still pretty popular.

10 comments:

A.C. McCloud said...

Since Matthews and Edwards were discussing the poisoned discourse in American politics did he ask about the Amanda Marcotte blogger episode, by any chance?

LASunsett said...

AC,

//did he ask about the Amanda Marcotte blogger episode, by any chance?//

If you had to make your best guess for a million dollars with no lifelines left and no option to quit and take the money already being offered you, what would be your guess? ;)

Michael said...

I'm confident that an intelligent woman such as Elizabeth Edwards didn't call up Ann Coulter without discussing it first with her husband's campaign officials.


- Michael from The Politics Desk at TheNewsRoom.com

A.C. McCloud said...

If you had to make your best guess for a million dollars with no lifelines left and no option to quit and take the money already being offered you, what would be your guess? ;)

I'll take that as a no. ;-)

Mary Ellen said...

LA

I love the way you right wingers are blaming John Edwards for Ann Coulter's hate speech and giving her a pass. This is the party of compassion?

Of course, I'm not surprised that you picked up on the right wing talking points about how the Edwards campaign is doing this to raise money.

Where is your proof that John Edwards cash flow has dried up, LA? So, you pick up on Ann Coulter's (beacon of humanity) talking points?

It's pretty pathetic to see the GOP scrambling around trying to cover for Ann's behavior and trying to point the finger of blame at Edwards. Maybe you should watch the interview of David Gregory and Elizabeth Edwards this morning. When David Gregory tried to pull that line she laughed in his face.

Oh, and since the Edwards made this statement about Ann Coulter on their website, don't you think it would be natural that his website would be also asking for donations just like any other political campaign website? Does he only ask for donations in regard to this particular story, or is it a call for donations that is a permanent message on the website?

Easier for you to jump to conclusions....it's the Drudge way.

BTW, there is never a good reason to make a snide remark about the dead child of a candidate...or any other person. Ann is a pathetic piece of crap, and those who defend her should be aware that her stink sticks to those who are too close.

LASunsett said...

ME,

//I love the way you right wingers are blaming John Edwards for Ann Coulter's hate speech and giving her a pass.//

Tell me, where in my post did I blame Edwards for Coulter's speech?

//BTW, there is never a good reason to make a snide remark about the dead child of a candidate...or any other person.//

Where did I say that it was?


//Ann is a pathetic piece of crap, and those who defend her should be aware that her stink sticks to those who are too close.//

That may be so, but where did I defend her?

Once again ME, you are trying to change the argument into something it is not. I think it is equally pathetic that the Edwards people are trying to goad her into this, just so they can raise money that they are not raising, without her. That's the subject of the post, not the defense of Ann Coulter. I couldn't care any less about her and I put up a link to the post where I criticized her for her inappropriate remarks that set this whole thing off back in March. Did you even read it?

I love it when you jump to conclusions by selecting reading, it makes it so easy to pick your arguments apart. ;)

Mary Ellen said...

//Tell me, where in my post did I blame Edwards for Coulter's speech?//

You said: "But here in June, we see that the Edwards campaign is refusing to allow the feud to drop. Why? Because her comment was effectively used as a fund raising tool, for a campaign that has little chance to walk on its own. In short the campaign is in trouble without the controversy."

You made it very clear that you felt the Edwards campaign was doing this for no other reason than to collect money.

////BTW, there is never a good reason to make a snide remark about the dead child of a candidate...or any other person.

Where did I say that it was?//

Did I say YOU said it? I made the point that this is the garbage spewed by Ann Coulter.

//The Edwards campaign is not the only one guilty here, because we know the call was planned. Matthews had prior knowledge of it. John Edwards said that this was his wife's idea, she did on her own. But, I don't buy it. It has all the makings of a calculated strategy.//

Again, you make it sound as if somehow, the Edwards and Chris Matthews are guilty of setting up poor Ann Coulter. I never said you "defended" Ann...those are your words, LA. I said that anyone who stands too close to Ann to defend her are just as bad as she is. I have the feeling you are standing just a little too close by trying to make the Edwards look bad for Ann's hate speech,

//I love it when you jump to conclusions by selecting reading, it makes it so easy to pick your arguments apart. ;)//

Who was jumping to conclusions, LA? I think it was you who twisted everything I said.

Damn, LA....you make it so easy for me to slap you right down!

You should try to be a little more careful with your strawman arguments....they're so...Drudgelike. ;=)

BTW, I'll be linking tomorrows post on my blog to your post...it was just too hard to pass up. :-D

LASunsett said...

ME,

//You made it very clear that you felt the Edwards campaign was doing this for no other reason than to collect money.//

Yes, I did. And I stand by it. But that does not translate to: It's Edward's fault that Coulter says the things she does.

//Did I say YOU said it? I made the point that this is the garbage spewed by Ann Coulter.//

Again, this was not a post defending Coulter. So, why bring it up when it's irrelevant to the argument I am making?

//I have the feeling you are standing just a little too close by trying to make the Edwards look bad for Ann's hate speech,//

I am not making Edwards look bad, least of all for her speech. Edwards is making Edwards look bad, by using Coulter to raise money that he could not otherwise raise. You can not believe it if you choose, but you only fool yourself if you think that Edwards isn't calculating this whole scenario.

//Who was jumping to conclusions, LA? I think it was you who twisted everything I said. //

Nice try. But the record speaks for itself.

//BTW, I'll be linking tomorrows post on my blog to your post...it was just too hard to pass up. :-D//

I am honored and only glad to help. ;) I won't be around the computer much tomorrow, as my day is long and grueling. But I will catch up with it sooner or later. See ya.

BEING HAD said...

Perhaps what this means is that Edwards is using what clout he does actually have to go after Coulter for the general good. I am sure she is on many people's "life would be far better without her" list. If Edwards can see already that he doesn't really have the steam to get there, why not at least do some damage where it might do some good?

And I agree with Michael about Mrs. Edward's call. I don't believe that at that level there would be any real spontaneity. It is possible that the original idea came from Elizabeth Edwards, but for sure she didn't just pick up the phone. No way.

LASunsett said...

BH,

//Perhaps what this means is that Edwards is using what clout he does actually have to go after Coulter for the general good. I am sure she is on many people's "life would be far better without her" list. If Edwards can see already that he doesn't really have the steam to get there, why not at least do some damage where it might do some good?//

That may sound good, but Edwards is not going to get rid of her. He is not going to damage her. If anything, she will get stronger. By giving her attention, she is able to sell more books and get more exposure.

But that's just the thing here. Edwards is gaining from it too. So in a sense, they both gain from this so called outrage. He raises money off of it, she sells more books.