Tuesday, April 29, 2008

CONTEXTS, NORMALCY AND THE WRIGHT STUFF

Sunday, April 27, 2008
Below are excerpts from this week's Talk Talk, CONTEXTS, NORMALCY AND THE WRIGHT STUFF. Every Sunday CUIP's president Jacqueline Salit and strategist and philosopher Fred Newman watch the political talk shows and discuss them. Here are excerpts from their dialogue on Sunday, April 27, 2008 after watching "The Chris Matthews Show" and "This Week with George Stephanopoulos."


Newman: I haven't seen any polls recently, but the last ones I did see, they were both unpopular. The Republicans were slightly more unpopular than the Democrats. I think that's probably holding up throughout all of this. Pardon me if I make a philosophical point, but things matter contextually, not as things in themselves. Most things matter contextually. So when you change the context, what matters is going to change. This is where we are right now and so things matter in the way they do relative to the context we're in right now.

Salit: Yes.

Newman: When we change the context, what matters is going to change. And it can change on a dime. On a dime. The biggest thing to say about Pennsylvania is that through all of this hullabaloo, nothing much changed. Hillary was expected to win. And she did. She was expected to win by between six and ten points and she did. It was a state, in some ways, made for her. Then all these things happened and people say 'Oh it was this that caused it, or this that caused it.' And no doubt, these things played a role. But it wasn't as if there was this shift so large that they have to explain it - it was about the expectation. And that's been true for most of the primary, even through all of the hullabaloo about it. The most unexpected thing that happened through this whole Democratic primary was Iowa.

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