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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

GOP’s “Puff” Daddies

In case you missed it, the competition for Republican National Committee chair just got very weird. Tennessee GOP chairman Chip Saltsman distributed a CD to RNC members that included a “parody” song entitled “Barack the Magic Negro,” sung to the tune of the old Peter, Paul & Mary classic “Puff the Magic Dragon.”
Adam Serwer at TAPPED has everything you need to know about the song itself, which started out as an African-American “inside joke” that uncomprehending conservatives found hilarious. Rush Limbaugh, natch, played the song on his show on several occasions, and Saltsman saw nothing wrong with sending it around.
Initial reaction to the brouhaha in Republican circles was of the “Keep it at home!” variety, which isn’t surprising given the GOP’s already unsavory reputation among minority citizens. But now, mirabile dictu, there are reports that Saltsman may be benefitting from it, as GOPers angrily react to the reaction by “the media” and other candidates. Specifically, incumbent chairman Mike Duncan and MI GOP chairman Saul Anuzis are said to have hurt themselves by suggesting that Saltsman’s stunt was a bit out of line:

Those are two guys who just eliminated themselves from this race for jumping all over Chip on this,” one committee member told Politico. “Mike Duncan is a nice guy, but he screwed up big time by pandering to the national press on this.”

Interesting, eh? Worrying about the Republican Party’s image as being a little soft on racism is defined by some RNC members as “pandering to the national press.” Who knows: maybe Saltsman deliberately cooked up this whole incident to get a sympathy vote from Republicans who feel persecuted by any and all criticism. But in any event, it’s another example of Republicans occupying a very different mental space than the voters they need to return to power.
UPCATEGORY: Democratic Strategist

One of the distinguishing characteristics of modern American conservatism is that it believes in a curious concept of “color blindness.” In this view, racism is bad. But absent truly egregious behavior, it’s not something you’d really get all that upset about nor is it something you should be really attuned do. But so-called “political correctness” — meaning something like anti-racism that’s gone too far — is a really serious problem. Any hint of political correctness is worth getting upset about. And the views of actual members of racial minorities as to what is and isn’t racist should be completely discounted.

Exactly. Conservatives who are forever whining about “political correctness” don’t seem to understand that there really are utterances that are really and truly “incorrect.”

2 comments on “GOP’s “Puff” Daddies

  1. Trumankid on

    It isn’t really surprising that the NeoCons don’t “get it”. Time and time again, we’ve seen them demonstrate the fact that, en masse, their development arrested somewhere around the fifth grade..particularly what passes for the Repub “sense of humor”, which is akin to stuffing beans up your nose and expecting others, beyond their own sniggling “peer” group, to think it’s funny! I’m sure that Pharty-Cushions in the congressional dining room and itching powder in the lavatory soap dispensers are just down the road, as well. For that matter, any supposedly grown man in his..what..fifties(?)..who still refers to himself as “Chip”, should automatically be subject to suspicion, anyway..my friends! This crass, classless clown actually wants to lead the RNC? Well, water seeks its own level, guys ‘n gals! Obviously, he’ll be right at home..and we’ll know exactly what to expect during the next eight years..you betcha!

  2. john patton on

    I am trying to imagine what the Republican reaction would be if one of the candidates for the DNC chairmanship circulated a CD with a song that began
    Bush the modern Jesus
    walked on the sea
    and tossed around some fish and bread
    to the folks in Galilee
    Do ya think they’d think it was just a barrel of yucks and just good fun? Somehow I doubt it.


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