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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Messiah smear

Some of Barack Obama's foes apparently want voters to think that he has a messiah complex. On February 10, this comment was left on my blog:
"... a light will shine through that window, a beam of light will come down upon you, you will experience an epiphany ... and you will suddenly realize that you must go to the polls and vote for Obama" - Barack Obama Lebanon, New Hampshire. January 7, 2008. Hillary, please go away!! Let Obama rule!!
I googled that phrase ("a beam of light will come down upon you, you will experience an epiphany,") and the results are eye-opening.

The first result is to this blog: Is Barack Obama the Messiah? The sidebar is filled with links to "heretics and unbelievers" and an ad from The New Republic. Somehow, I don't think an Obama supporter would lead off a defense with a link to Red State. The blog is getting 3700 hits per day, which is almost 100 times my average.

Most of the other results are right-leaning blogs and their mission seems pretty transparent. Often, when these words are quoted, his middle name (Hussein) is used and the writer says that the words are typical of a cult leader -- and "scary."

Apparently, these critics don't understand metaphor -- and are trying to make people believe that Obama is doing something beyond trying to win votes.

Here's CNN's transcript of the January 7 event, with enough surrounding material to provide the context:
And so your Lebanon organizer for the Obama campaign is Big Dave Ormbrendt (ph).

Where's Dave?

Big Dave, come on up here. Stay right here. Here's Big Dave. He is doing a great job.

They love you, Big Dave. They love you.

He is doing a great job.

Now, in the last day here, Dave only has one thing on his mind. He wakes up with this thought, he goes to sleep with this thought, he eats and lives and breathes and dreams about getting you to the polls tomorrow. That's all he is thinking about.

More specifically, getting you to the polls to vote for me. That's what he's thinking about.

(APPLAUSE)

That's his job, get you to the polls, vote for Obama. My job is to help him do his job. So I am going to try to be so persuasive in the 20 minutes or so that I speak that by the time this is over, a light will shine down from somewhere.

It will light upon you. You will experience an epiphany. And you will say to yourself, I have to vote for Barack. I have to do it.

And if you make that decision, if that moment happens, then it would be great -- even though it's just one day to go -- for you to fill out one of these supporter cards before you leave, because that way we'll know, you know, who, in fact, is going to be voting. Make sure that you are getting to the right precinct. It will be very heful to Dave in doing his job.
Not so scary, eh?

Media Matters
is on the case.


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