Mickey Kaus is a Liberal who will actually try to find out the facts. Kudos to him for that.
But he does occasionally descend into Left wing incoherence. A prime example is a short post entitled Ride My See-Saw. (Click on this link, and scroll down to the post at the 1:21 PM mark.)
Mr. Kaus is taken with the concept of “vertical ticket splitters”, people who don’t automatically cast all of their votes for one party. He attributes their motivation for doing this to guilt. People might vote for Obama in this election, but then carefully cast their remaining votes for Republicans because they feel guilty about…
Well, I’m not really sure why anyone feels guilt. Mr. Kaus seems to think that the bad feelings all flow from racism.
“M suggested that voters (especially white, swing voters) who don’t vote for Obama may feel guilty about it and compensate by voting for Democrats in downballot races (Senate and Congress). But the converse of this theory is equally interesting–voters who do pick Obama, may compensate or hedge for what they feel is a bold, guilt-expiating risk by picking Republicans downballot.”
“…more people will be vertical ticket splitters because of the presence of Obama, who is not only an African American candidate–whom you might feel guilty about not picking–but a relatively unknown candidate whom you might want to hedge against, especially if you voted for him to avoid feeling guilty about not picking him (and then felt guilty about that).”
(An attempt was made to keep the original emphasis intact. The above is how Mr. Kaus wants you to see his work.)
This seems extremely odd to me. If someone is a racist, then by definition they genuinely believe that a person’s race disqualifies them in some way. Makes the minority candidate unable to do a decent job simply because of their heritage, so to speak.
Seen in this light, it becomes obvious that racists are not going to be effected in any way by guilty feelings. Why would anyone, racist or otherwise, feel guilty about voting for what they see as the more capable choice? If anything, racists would feel pride in voting for their prejudices because they would think that they are acting for the greater good. So why go on and on about how racists would feel guilt?
The constant harping on racism from the Left during this election appears to me to have two root causes.
It seems to me that one cause is pure projection from Liberals. They are going to vote for Obama not because they genuinely believe him to be the best qualified for the job, but due to some bizarre self loathing. White guilt, if you will. Since guilt is the most powerful motivator when they make their political choices, it seems obvious to them that everyone else must also have simmering pools of white hot shame bubbling just beneath the surface. If people just listened to the voice in their heads that said they must make up for being a piece of crap, then everyone would make the same choice. The correct choice!
The other is a cynical attempt to manipulate swing voters, a propaganda effort to make the Bradley Effect work for the Democrats. If swing voters can be convinced that they will be perceived as racists by voting for anyone other than Obama, maybe a significant percentage will vote for the candidate that they would otherwise feel is too inexperienced to handle the job. Pretty much force people to vote for the least qualified candidate.
I must confess, dear reader, that it makes me feel distinctly uncomfortable to climb up on my analyst’s couch and try to plumb the mental depths of complete strangers. Not only am I obviously unqualified, it also strikes me as the height of arrogance to even try. But I feel justified since the Left in general, and Mr. Kaus specifically, are not constrained to keep to their area of expertise.
To close, I would have to say that the only people who should be feeling guilty are the Liberals who scream “Racism!” at the drop of a hat. Have they no shame?
(Hat tip to Glenn.)