Saturday, August 15, 2009

Julia Hall: Planted Question

The problem with politics is that sometimes Michelle Malkin is right. Apparently the little girl, Julia Hall, who asked Obama the "what's wrong with the fuckheads?" question at the New Hampshire town hall was the daughter of an Obama campaign contributor, according to this Boston Globe story.

So now I have to figure out what to do with this. If W had taken a softball question from a planted little girl a ruckus would be raised. When Obama does it...I'm fine with it. Which seems to indicate that I do not have a problem with "took a planted question" but rather my opinions of various political happenings are skewed to my own political stance. I like Obama; I do not like W. So when W does X I am irritated, when Obama does X I am ok with it.

The problem, though, is in discerning the constancy of that X, whether "Bush takes a planted question" is, in fact, the same as "Obama takes a planted question". What are the questions? What are the contexts of the questions? I think this plays into the larger Health Care debate issue. Are Health Care protestors the same as War protestors? Is yelling at a congress person about Health Care the same as yelling at a congress person about W's war?

For myself, though, the question is this: Does asking these questions make me an apologist? Am I attempting to have my cake and eat it too? Did I fault W for doing that which Obama now does?

Perhaps there is a nuance to be understood whereby the context of the debate matters. If I yell facts at a congress person is this different from yelling fabricated lies? I would think so. Are there situations where answering planted questions serves the greater good while other situations in which anwering planted questions merely serves one political party? Perhaps.

If one assumes an external world one might sensibly assume that the external world is a complicated place. So Obama took a planted question in order to discuss the folly of the current Health Care debate. Ok. Maybe that is a bit underhanded. Or maybe it was a necessity so that Obama could address the larger attitude of the current political zeitgeist. I do not know which it is.

But Michella Malkin is still a stupid fucking cunt.


Roscoe said...

Question the first - Was Obama aware it was planted/preplanned? (I'm thinking probably, but it's worth pinning down)

Question the second - is the issue the planted question? or the content OF the planted questions? One of the big problems w/ Bush's planted questions is that they were a regular occurance, and the audiences were selectively chosen to be sympathetic.

It's some political theater to have a young kid stand up and ask questions, undoubtedly.. but I'm unsure if it's as harmful an expression of such as the situation you're comparing it to.

as for Malkin.. there are no words.

Mike Lewis said...

the problem with W and planted questoins is that all of his questions were planted.

Bush never did a town hall or a Q&A (with one exception*) where the questions had not been submitted in advanced and screened by white house advansed men. Daughter of a doner gets to ask a question is hardly the same as a pre-screened pre-approved question. New Hampshire is a small liberal state. Given that - the chances of there being dozens of people in that room who had donated money or time to Obama is highely likely

*The one exception came near the end of Bush's 8 years when he did a q&a at some economic summit. He just started taking questions at the end.