Bloggers weigh the turnout in New Hampshire.

The latest chatter in cyberspace.
Jan. 8 2008 5:40 PM

Vote Free or Die

Bloggers are summarizing the mood in New Hampshire, dissecting LSU's defeat of OSU in the BCS national championship game, and pondering the cancellation of the Golden Globes.

Vote free or die: As an unprecedented number of voters head to the polls in New Hampshire, bloggers wind up a week of trailing the candidates in the Granite State and react to Gloria Steinem's New York Times op-ed on Hillary Clinton.

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At Wizbang, New Hampshirite Jay Tea surveys the scene: "Well, it's crazy here in downtown Manchester. Crosswalks, walk signals, and traffic lights have been demoted to 'suggestions.' (Most of the jaywalkers seem to be wearing Hillary stickers, for what it's worth.) and there is a convertible driving up and down the main drag with two people in pig outfits. No, they're not porkbusters, they're pushing 'tax meat' as a solution to global warming. Unsurprisingly, the car had Massachusetts plates."

Joe Klein at Time's Swampland reveals that, besides campaigning for president, Obama has been attempting to smooth the postelection chaos in Kenya. "In the days since his Iowa victory, Obama has had near-daily conversations with the U.S. Ambassador in Kenya or with opposition leader Raila Odinga," he writes. "[I]t does seem noteworthy that, in the midst of the most amazing week of his life, Barack Obama has found the time to do a some diplomatic scut-work." David L. Miller at CBS News' Horserace finds this to be the type of diplomacy Obama has said he would practice: "Engaging the principals in the Kenyan crisis directly seems in line with the vision he's spelled out in debates, one that includes face-to-face meetings with foreign leaders, including those opposed to American interests."

While Hillary Clinton spoke Monday at a high school, two men stood up and shouted "iron my shirt!" repeatedly, bearing a yellow sign emblazoned with the same slogan. Christy Hardin Smith at liberal Firedoglake is aghast: "We would never, ever let them get away with pulling this shit based on Obama's race, would we?  We shouldn't, because it's disgusting.  Gender is no different as a reason for heightened scrutiny." (In Slate's XX Factor, Meghan O'Rourke wonders why USA Today referred to the comments as "seemingly sexist.")

Meanwhile, bloggers respond to a Gloria Steinem op-ed in the New York Times on sexism vs. racism in politics, holding that women are never front-runners. "There is truth in what Steinem writes but it is not a universal truth. In general, I believe white women are given a fairer shake than African American men. But in politics, especially at its highest levels, this seems less so. It seems undeniable that Obama has become a Meda Darling while Hillary Clinton has gotten the worst coverage since Al Gore in 2000," writes Big Tent Democrat at TalkLeft.

Moderate and law professor Ann Althouse opines that Steinem is overlooking how Clinton has attained her high stature. "An unprecedented eight years of on-the-job training in the White House? Ahem... Gloria? Can you say anything about the feminist issues entailed in a woman running for the presidency on her husband's accomplishments? If not, you're speaking as a Clinton partisan and not as someone who wants to seriously engage with feminism." Conservative Sister Toldjah scolds Steinem for turning Hillary into a victim. "Never underestimate the power of a 'progressive' feminist to play the victim card when things don't go the way she feels women are owed." And liberal Steve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog takes down part of Steinem's argument, noting that Condoleezza Rice, despite her professed disinterest in the job, was a top pick for the Republican nomination in a February 2006 poll.

Read more about the New Hampshire primary.

Tigers have it: After a tumultuous college football season, LSU routed Ohio State 38-24 in the BCS national championship at the Louisiana Superdome Monday night.

At Every Day Should Be Saturday, Orson Swindle applauds LSU coach Les Miles. "LSU put Ohio State in horrible positions all night long: running with power on a defense unaccustomed to yielding hard yards on the ground, hammering them for scores after three turnovers, and forcing the plodding offense to sprint when it really, really would have preferred to stroll," he writes.

At Rumors and Rants, Phillips tries to take down gloating LSU fans a notch or two. "Crow all you want LSU fans, very few people outside of Louisiana think you won an actual national title. Sure you got your crystal ball by beating a vastly overrated Ohio State team (they lost to Illinois at home for Christ's sake) 38-24 in the Superdome last night, and hey, maybe you guys would have won a legit title if you had faced one of the other best teams in the country. But you didn't." At Deadspin, Will Leitch chimes in: "We hope LSU fans do not take it as an insult that hardly anyone considers their title legitimate; every season has to crown one champion, however the champion is crowned, and LSU is fortunate enough to be that team."

Read more about LSU's victory. Slate's Louisianan Josh Levin weighs in on the game.

Globes implode: The Golden Globes became the latest victim of the writers' strike Monday when NBC cancelled the traditional ceremony in favor of an unglamorous press conference. Many celebrities, wary of crossing strike lines, had promised not to attend. The Oscars could be next.

Richard Keller at TV Squad catalogs what the world will miss out on with the cancellation: "No red carpet interviews, no pithy conversations between television and movie stars, no close-ups of actors or actresses laughing at jokes that really aren't that funny but seem totally hilarious after a few appletinis."

At the Guardian's theblogfilm, Xan Brooks is rejoicing: "Out with the red carpet and its attendant court of sycophants (particularly those alarming morons who insist on pointing out that they are "live on E!" Shame on them). Out with the timid comedy routines and the toe-curling show-tunes. Out with the deadly acceptance speeches. Out with the whole overdressed, overhyped lot of them."

Read more about the Golden Globes.

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