I think the pigs are flying now

Mr Jender’s mother, a white life-long Republican retiree who adores McCain and lives in a key swing state, is strongly leaning Obama. As Mr J rightly points out, we thought this was impossible. If she can change her mind, who knows who else might… So go on, phone those friends and relatives with whom you always avoid talking politics, and give it a shot… Who knows what might happen?

Gosh, what do you think he’s suggesting about Arabs?

People are remarking on the fact that McCain has recently defended Obama against some of his supporters’ accusations at rallies: there’s been so much hatred expressed, that surely it’s good to start speaking out against it. Surely…. Here’s the defense:

A woman at the town hall asks softly: “I’ve heard that Sen. Obama is an

McCain quickly cuts the woman off.

“No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man and citizen,” McCain says. “He’s
not. Thank you.”

Oh yeah, that’s a big improvement. No hating there. Nope.

Sex Discrimination, Obama, McCain

Obama’s policies on sex/gender discrimination are far better than McCain’s (he actually opposes it, for example). And it’s good to see him finally making something of this. But McCain has responded by pointing out that McCain’s female staffers earn more than his male staffers, while Obama’s earn less. There may be (and probably/hopefully is) a good response to this. But here’s what’s not a good response (From the HuffPo, not from Obama’s campaign):

The wage disparity for women in each office, it should be noted, has nothing to do with gender discrimination. Rather, McCain has a greater number of female employees in senior positions.

It’s not a good response, because that’s precisely one of the ways sex/gender discrimination works– by keeping women out of senior positions. Duh.

Obama, McCain and Ageism

Despite being an Obama supporter, I criticised him for the sexist dogwhistles he used against Clinton, as he talked about her “periodically… feeling down”. Now he’s talking about McCain being “confused” and “angry”, which arguably are ageist dogwhistles. What do you think about these? I find myself wanting to say that when McCain gets facts wrong there’s nothing problematic in calling him “confused”, or that when he acts angry it’s fine to call him “angry”. But I worry that partisan loyalties may be muddying my thinking on this.

Straight Talk. Yeah.

From the Wall Street Journal:

A female Los Angeles Times reporter inquired today about comments made earlier this week by McCain campaign adviser Carly Fiorina, the former head of Hewlett Packard.

At a breakfast with reporters, Fiorina suggested that individuals–and women in particular–be given more flexibility to determine what their health insurance plans should cover. “There are many health insurance plans that will cover Viagra but won’t cover birth-control medication. Those women would like a choice,” she observed.

When McCain was asked for his position on the issue, he said—with a nervous laugh–“I certainly do not want to discuss that issue.”

The reporter pressed. “But apparently you’ve voted against—“

“I don’t know what I voted,” McCain said.

The reporter explained that McCain voted against a bill in 2003 that would have required health insurance companies to cover prescription birth control. “Is that still your position?” she persisted.

During the awkward exchange, with several lengthy pauses, McCain said he had no immediate knowledge of the vote. “I’ve cast thousands of votes in the Senate,” McCain said, then continued: “I will respond to—it’s a, it’s a…”

“Delicate issue,” the reporter offered, to a relieved laugh from McCain.

“I don’t usually duck an issue, but I’m—I’ll try to get back to you,” he explained.