Boy, the feathers were flying - big time - yesterday.
Seeking to throw a spike strip in front of the steamrolling Obama Campaign, the Clintonistas were up in arms over the Senator from Illinois using lines in speech, that had been previously used by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick.
And it wasn't subtle.
Plagiarism!, the cries went out.
Taylor Marsh could barely contain herself, both on her own blog and on The Huffington Post.
"Barack Obama isn't an original. He's the first 21st century L. Ron Hubbard of politics, Elmer Gantry, name your huckster ... "I have a dream" just became "I have a con."Ouch!
We can only imagine, one of Marsh's staffers must have had to stand by while she was typing, cloth-in-hand, to wipe the foam away from her mouth.
You can see the conflagration here, on Memeorandum.
It didn't seem to matter, that as the Clintonistas were manning the flamethrower, Obama himself, as while as others, came to diffuse the situation, noting that Obama and Patrick are friends and have frequently shared campaign strategy, speeches, etc.
Even a Republican weighed in on it.
Obama, himself, noted that, in hindsight, it might have been wise to make the citation, while completely defending himself, pointing to the books he's written, etc.
And soon, as quickly as the arrows were flying at Obama, well, what do you know, examples of Hillary using the words of others in her stump speeches began appearing (Disclosure - It was not noted if Clinton was speaking in her own voice on these occasions, or if she was summoning up the voices of the dead)
Lost amid the drifting smoke was Howard Wolfson, Clinton Communications guy, and his sterling, backhanded compliment to his boss.
From Jake Tapper, at ABC News;
"I asked Clinton communications director Howard Wolfson and Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass, if they could assure the public that neither Clinton nor McGovern has ever done what Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, did when he used the rhetoric of Gov. Deval Patrick without footnoting him.
They would not.
In fact, Wolfson seemed to say it wouldn't be as big a deal if it were discovered that Clinton had "lifted" such language.
"Sen. Clinton is not running on the strength of her rhetoric," Wolfson said.
Sen. Clinton is not running on the strength of her rhetoric!
That is like the New York Yankees coming out today and saying that, "at least, Roger Clemens didn't leave his used needles lying around the clubhouse floor".
After all the hullabaloo, all the fuss, about Hillary "finding my own voice", Wolfson comes to her defense by, essentially, saying, she's a blockhead!
Oh boy, that is too rich ...
Wolfson might as well have just said "My client wouldn't do that, she's to dumb", or "Pigs will fly before Hillary has the mental capacity to pick up something like that".
With Obama leading in the voting, I half expect Wolfson to come out dissing him, perhaps with a Yogi Berra line, like "Nobody goes there anymore because it's too crowded."
If Obama wants to have some fun, some wicked fun, the film "The Legend of 1900" comes to mind.
1900 is a stowaway, virtuoso pianist (hauntingly portrayed by Tim Roth), born, growing up on and never leaving, an oceanliner.
"At one point in the film Jelly Roll Morton (Clarence Williams III), of New Orleans jazz fame, comes aboard to challenge 1900 to a piano duel. 1900 merely toys with the hot-tempered Morton, even going so far as to play a note-for-note version of an original tune Morton just played! In the end, the ship-bound 1900 defeats Morton handily."
Obama, in the next debate, should emulate 1900, and word-for-word, hand back a Hillary answer, but with his tremendous skills.
Perhaps, like Jelly Roll Morton in the film, Hillary will simply slink away, throughly over- matched and defeated.
Who says that they don't write happy endings anymore?
The Grenade-Tossing, Flame-Throwing Links
The Plank: Former Clinton Speechwriter Weighs In On Plagiarism-Gate
Bob Cesca: The Wolfson Plagiarism Attack Is Ridiculous
Jeff Fecke: Is Barack Obama a Plagiarist? (No.)
James Joyner: Obama ‘Steals’ from King and Jefferson
Kevin Drum: The Obama Bubble