Biden is kind of right on this one…

Vice President “Diamond Joe” Biden had plenty of choice comments last night while he was helping Ed Markey raise some scratch in Massachusetts.  One of them isn’t so crazy:

“There’s a big difference in this race,” Biden said, according to the pool report. “Barack Obama’s not at the head of the ticket. And that means those legions of African Americans and Latinos are not automatically going to come out. No one has energized them like Barack Obama. But he’s not on the ticket. So don’t take this one for granted.”

Leaving aside for a moment the unintentional racism of assuming minority groups vote as a bloc for members of other minority groups, Biden is right on one point: much of the Democrats’ success over the previous six years came in large part due to voters excited about President Obama himself.   Yes, the 2012 campaign team made unprecedented use of data to identify supporters, but they did so in the name of an exciting candidate.

Edward Markey doesn’t excite people they way Obama does.  Joe Manchin, Max Baucus, and Tim Johnson probably wouldn’t, either, which is a big reason they aren’t running for re-election in 2014.  Corey Booker might, but outside of him or a similar candidate rising through the ranks, the Democrats won’t have candidates who can duplicate Obama’s success.

That’s not an indictment of the Democrats yet – politicians like Obama don’t come around all that often, and the Republican ranks only have a few political rock stars of their own.  But it will become an indictment if Democrats feel like Obama will carry them to victory again in 2014 and 2016.

Landmark day for the internet

The FCC will pass net neutrality regulations today.  The movement for “net neutrality” has been gaining steam in recent years, and the government wants to ensure that no entity will be able to censor what internet users can access:

When asked if that made it a crime for Assange, Biden said Assange could be proven to have violated the law when it turned out he encouraged or helped Bradley Manning, U.S. intelligence analysts believed it was behind the leaking of the document of the United States Embassy.

I’m sorry, my mistake: that’s Vice President Joe Biden describing how the US Government is going to drop the hammer on Julian Assange for the stuff he put up on the internet.  That’s apparently completely unrelated.



Fake Twitter Accounts: A Big F***ing Deal

Leave it to Joe Biden.  After a year of contentious debate followed by 36 hours of talking heads trying to make sense of what the health care overhaul means, the Veep’s tidy summary was at once true, painfully obvious, hilarious, and in character with the caricature of Biden as an elder Dan Quayle redux… Which meant that the internet would have a field day with it.

Within hours, the Twitter feed @BigFnDealer was mocking Biden and chronicling the reactions.  This comes just a few months after  Carly Fiorina’s “Demon Sheep” web video spawned @DemonSheep. And @BOTeleprompter has been mocking Biden’s boss just about as long as the President has been in office.  Sarah Palin and Michael Steel have been targeted.

Fake Twitter have been giving alter egos to characters both fictional (@DarthVader) and real (@Michael_Bay) since Twitter launched.  They have generally been a hobby, but as the political examples show, they can also be a way to advance a message in a comic, snarky way.  Because they are generally anonymous, they are tough to engage unless the account owner does something stupid (like trying to claim the actual identity of the person being mocked).

As @BigFnDealer shows, getting in on the ground floor is a necessity – the internet moves fast.  And of course, satire only works as a powerful message advancement tool if it’s good; lame jokes tend to backfire.

But when it works, what better way to needle your opponent than to put words in his or her mouth?