Saturday, November 01, 2008
Friday, October 31, 2008
We read the published comments from McCain spokespeople that argue the dialing/canvassing numbers are ahead of where they were at the same time four years ago. Well, either the Bush ground game of 2004 was the Big Myth, or those spokespeople are flat lying to reporters, who have no context to challenge those claims because they haven't seen the empty offices the way we have.
I've actually long thought, with no evidence, that the Bush ground game was in fact a Big Myth.
I think we're about to get schooled. Again. The torture loving right is dusting off its completely hypocritical "government is full of jack-booted thugs" playbook --- and it's going to drive us all completely crazy.
Indeed. They'll try to bring Obama down on some abuse of power scandal. Should be fun!
Our discourse is so stupid generally, and the McCain campaign is aiming even below that.
"I've not been convicted yet," Stevens said Thursday in a meeting with the editorial board of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. "There's not a black mark by my name yet, until the appeal is over and I am finally convicted, if that happens. If that happens, of course I'll do what's right for Alaska and for the Senate. ... I don't anticipate it happening, and until it happens I do not have a black mark."
Stevens reiterated that position during a televised debate late Thursday night, declaring early in the give-and-take with Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich, "I have not been convicted of anything."
There is little doubt that Democrats generally will do well Tuesday. And, if District 3 voters are dissatisfied with Shadegg's conservative politics, Lord may join a large freshman class of Democrats.
But local voter dissatisfaction is one thing. What Moulitsas seeks has the unseemly scent of wild-eyed vengeance. The fellow is looking for GOP bodies over which to stand.
The Arizona Republic has urged District 3 voters to re-elect Shadegg. As "Kos" himself notes, Shadegg is the "topmost conservative in the House."
But now we add another reason to support the incumbent: Politics isn't - or shouldn't be - blood sport. Re-elect John Shadegg and give an out-of-state political barbarian something to weep about on Election Day.
Appearing once again on The Daily Show, Bill Kristol, Jon Stewart's favorite whipping boy ("Bill Kristol, aren't you ever right?"), tonight defended the McCain-Palin ticket, at one point informing the show's host that he was getting his news from suspect sources. "You're reading The New York Times too much," he declared.
"But you work for The New York Times," Stewart pointed out
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Contrary to the rumors that you've heard, I was not born in a manger. I was actually born on Krypton and sent here by my father, Jor-El, to save the planet Earth.
Clark Kent on Smallville tonight:
Maybe my destiny is more than just secretly saving people. Maybe it's also to give people hope.
Fearful that November was too long to wait, her daughter sent for an absentee ballot. It arrived last week.
“She made her mark, and we put it in the envelope, my brother and I walked to the mailbox, it was 11 o’clock Wednesday morning and I said ‘Mom its in the mail, you’ve done your thing, Barack’s going to win,’ and she kind of smiled and it was kind of a deep sigh, a sigh of relief, and in less than an hour later, she died,” said M. Fitzgerald.
Bankruptcy protection, like limited liability, is there because the system doesn't really work without it. Unbalance the system too much by messing with them and it stops working. Heckuva job, credit card lobbyists.
- (CBS) With less than one week until Election Day, Barack Obama maintains a clear lead over John McCain in the presidential race, a new CBS News/New York Times poll suggests. The Democratic nominee now leads his Republican rival by 11 percentage points, 52 percent to 41 percent, among likely voters nationwide.
After a year of speculation as to whether voters were prejudiced, in the last few weeks — since the campaigns zeroed in on white, blue-collar communities in Pennsylvania, really — people making casual, overtly racist statements suddenly started getting quoted in the papers.
Fishtown, as the anonymous canvasser observed, was sometimes a graphic example.
What he found even more surprising, though, was that these same people were considering voting for Obama.
For the past couple of weeks, I've been talking to people in Fishtown, and I've found much the same thing. Obama's skin color is a problem for many white voters in Philly — but with the economy in ruins, they're turning to Obama anyway. Call it the Fishtown Effect.
Audience members escorted out of Sen. John McCain’s, R-Ariz., campaign event in Cedar Falls questioned why they were asked to leave Sunday’s rally even though they were not protesting.
David Zarifis, director of public safety for the University of Northern Iowa, said McCain staffers requested UNI police assist in escorting out “about four or five” people from the rally prior to McCain’s speech.
“When I started talking to them, it kind of became clear that they were kind of just telling people to leave that they thought maybe would be disruptive, but based on what? Based on how they looked,” Elborno said. “It was pretty much all young people, the college demographic.”
Elborno said even McCain supporters were among those being asked to leave.
“I saw a couple that had been escorted out and they were confused as well, and the girl was crying, so I said ‘Why are you crying? and she said ‘I already voted for McCain, I’m a Republican, and they said we had to leave because we didn’t look right,’” Elborno said. “They were handpicking these people and they had nothing to go off of, besides the way the people looked.”
NEW DELHI — A series of apparently synchronized explosions tore through four towns in the troubled state of Assam in northeastern India on Thursday, killing at least 67 people and leaving more than 210 wounded, according to witnesses and police.
Hopefully there's someone around to tell President McCain who the villain is. Probably it's Russia.
Margarete Humphrey knows her bungalow near the Louisiana Station light-rail stop is in a hot neighborhood. But she was surprised to learn the value of her home has increased over the past two years as much of the metro Denver housing market has declined.
Homes near light-rail stations along the southeast line, which opened in November 2006, have increased by an average of nearly 4 percent over the past two years, according to an analysis by Your Castle Real Estate. But the rest of the Denver market declined an average of 7.5 percent.
The closer a home is to the station, the more its value increases, according to the Your Castle analysis. Homes less than a half-mile from a station increased an average of 17.6 percent, while those 1 1/2 to 2 miles away increased just 0.1 percent on average. The data varied widely among stations, however.
And we're shrinking.
Gross domestic product contracted at a 0.3 percent annual pace, less than forecast, a Commerce Department report showed today in Washington. The last major economic data before the election also showed that a record two-decade consumer spending boom ended last quarter as the credit crunch deepened.
Consumer spending dropped at a 3.1 percent annual pace, the first decline since 1991 and the biggest since 1980, after President Jimmy Carter imposed credit controls. The median forecast was for a 2.4 percent drop.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
South Broad Street is already full of people down to Pine St. or so. Don't plan to drive there.
...uh-oh, hearing car alarms.
...moving truck down.
...CBS news truck almost tipped. Cops intervene just in time.
Wolf Blitzer: And this just coming into the "Situation Room," the Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin now speaking out openly about her intentions in 2012 if, if she and John McCain were to lose this contest next Tuesday. In an interview with ABC News, Sarah Palin is now saying, she would be interested in remaining a serious national political figure, going ahead to 2012. She was asked what happens in 2012 if you lose on Tuesday, would you simply go back to Alaska? Elizabeth Vargas of ABC News asked her and Palin said this, and I will read it to you verbatim according to an ABC News transcript: "Absolutely not," Sarah Palin says. "I think that, if I were to give up and wave a white flag of surrender against some of the political shots that we've taken, that ... that would ... bring this whole ... I'm not doin' this for naught," and that is a direct quote from Sarah Palin. Clearly, leaving open the possibility that she would be interested in leading the Republican Party in 2012 if she and John McCain were to lose this presidential contest right now. Let's go to Dana Bash. She has been covering the McCain campaign reaction from the rather blunt statement from Sarah Palin that she would in fact be interested in leading the Republican Party going forward after Tuesday if they lose?
Dana Bash: I just got off of the phone, Wolf, with a senior McCain adviser and I read this person the quote and I think it is fair to say that this person was speechless. There was a long pause and I just heard a "huh" on the other end of the phone. This is certainly not a surprise to anybody who has watched Sarah Palin that she is interested in potentially future national runs, and she is being urged to by a lot of people inside of the Republican Party if they do lose, but it is an "if" and people inside of the McCain campaign do not want any discussion that has an "if" in front of it six days before the election, they don't want any discussion at all, any kind of hypothetical talk about running for the next time around. So certainly, this is not at least initially being received well inside of the McCain campaign.
Wolf Blitzer: I am not surprised, not surprised at all. It is one of those "wow, she is talking about 2012 if we lose," that is not supposed to be something that you say. You are supposed to say, "well, I'm not looking ahead, I'm not looking ahead only to Tuesday," and those are the talking points she's supposed to be saying, but she is obviously blunt and she is looking ahead if something were to happen on Tuesday that she wouldn't be happy with.
Colorado: Obama 53, McCain 45
Florida: Obama 51, McCain 47
Georgia: McCain 52, Obama 47
Missouri: McCain 50, Obama 48
Virginia: Obama 53, McCain 44
Time for my election prediction, because I can't be a real pundit otherwise.
Obama gets Kerry states+Virgina+Colorado+New Mexico+Iowa for the win.
...oops, commenters remind me, Don't Forget Iowa! I did forget. Obama gets that too.
The irony here is that voters motivated by anger at the decline in their wealth seem about to elect a president who has promised to embark on wealth-destroying policies.
In other words, they're going to vote for Obama because George Bush destroyed all their wealth but this is ironic because Obama's going to destroy their wealth. Or something.
I understand Barone was once sane.
So, yes, I believe that the Beltway journalist class tells the truth about themselves when they say they're "socially liberal." But it isn't a liberalism which extends to actual policy in any concrete fashion, so it's sorta meaningless.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
n Ohio, a state that has been battered for years by unemployment and plant closings, Obama is leading McCain 49% to 40% among people likely to vote.
In Florida, a state that was considered a likely win for Republicans not long ago, McCain is trailing, 50% to 43%.
North Carolina Congressman Robin Hayes, reeling from recent remarks about "Liberals hating real Americans," has lost his lead in North Carolina's 8th Congressional District race.
Hayes trails Democrat Larry Kissell 51-46 in a poll released Tuesday by Raleigh's Public Policy Polling. In its last NC-8 poll in August, PPP had the incumbent Hayes leading by five points.
Gov. Charlie Crist on Tuesday extended early voting hours across Florida to 12 hours a day.
The executive order comes after record early voting turnout has contributed to long lines at polling sites.
Current Florida law allows for early voting to be conducted eight hours a day each weekday and for a total of eight hours during the weekends.
Fortunately, lots of places are within 400 miles of each other! Los Angeles to Las Vegas. Las Vegas to Phoenix. Phoenix to Albuquerque. Albuquerque to Denver.
Anyway, not saying all of these routes would be high priority ones, just that there are a lot of population centers that are in the sweet spot distance wise. When I am your benevolent dictator, priority will be given to linking places with decent mass transit systems. Of course, in my benevolent goodness, I'll also be building decent mass transit systems everywhere whether you like it or not. Because I know best.
Add in obvious points that this is center city to center city to travel, don't have the big security hassle, etc..
Changing the tax treatment wouldn't hurt the employer-sponsored system and would allow more of the uninsured to buy their own coverage, [the McCain campaign says]. Also, his advisers say a McCain administration would keep an eye on the credit to make sure it didn't lag behind the cost of coverage, while also working to lower the rate of medical inflation.
Younger, healthier workers likely wouldn't abandon their company-sponsored plans, said Douglas Holtz-Eakin, McCain's senior economic policy adviser.
"Why would they leave?" said Holtz-Eakin. "What they are getting from their employer is way better than what they could get with the credit."
So, the plan is to increase taxes on people with decent health care plans and provide a tax credit for people to buy shitty ones.
That's some wealth spreading we can believe in, my friends!
Back in the days when Democrats were DOOOOOMED to be out of power for 3000 years, or whatever, the basic liberal blog critique of Democratic politics wasn't that Democrats needed to move sharply to the left, though on some issues they should somewhat, both on the politics and the merits. The basic critique was that they needed to distinguish themselves from Republicans. "Not as evil as them" just wasn't quite compelling enough. Highlight the differences, rather than blurring them. Don't run from issues like abortion because voters already "know" you're the babykiller who's going to make everybody gay marry. Lead by showing leadership. Stop running against the party. Improve the brand.
Bush and this bunch of Republicans have completely fucked the Republican brand. Social conservatism (ban abortion and contraception, stone gay people) just isn't popular enough nationally, and they've (for a second time) destroyed the idea of Republicans as "fiscal conservatives."
Conservatism will be alive and well in the next Congress, as the blue dogs will find common cause with Republicans trying to resuscitate their brand and thwart an Obama administration. Wars and bailouts of rich people will still be free, of course, but money for sick kids will be "fiscally irresponsible." Our best hope is that Republicans fight to out-crazy each other enough to tarnish themselves enough that even the blue dogs might not want to get near them.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Brian Williams couldn't do it. Neither could Joe Scarborough, Rita Cosby, Dan Abrams, Ashleigh Banfield, Deborah Norville or Alan Keyes.
But MSNBC's new 9pmET show did. The Rachel Maddow show topped CNN's Larry King Live in the ad-friendly A25-54 demo during the month of October. King still wins the Total Viewer crown and FNC's Hannity & Colmes is #1 in both measurements.
All that ad money lost because you didn't listen to my advice to provide companion programming for K.O.
National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman John Ensign (Nev.) offered a strong condemnation of Stevens and seemed to hint that this conviction would lead to his defeat.
"This is a sad day for the United States Senate," said Ensign. "Ted Stevens served his constituents for over 40 years and I am disappointed to see his career end in disgrace."
I am obviously disappointed in the verdict but not surprised given the repeated instances of prosecutorial misconduct in this case. The prosecutors had to report themselves to the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility during the trial for ethical violations. Exculpatory evidence was hidden from my lawyers. A witness was kept from us and then sent back to Alaska. The Government lawyers allowed evidence to be introduced that they knew was false. I will fight this unjust verdict with every ounce of energy I have.
I am innocent. This verdict is the result of the unconscionable manner in which the Justice Department lawyers conducted this trial. I ask that Alaskans and my Senate colleagues stand with me as I pursue my rights. I remain a candidate for the United States Senate.
SEPTA will also provide extra late-night Regional Rail train service following the conclusion of tonight's World Series game. The extra late-night service back home will operate on SEPTA routes, with the exception of R1 Airport, R2 Wilmington and R6 Cynwyd, and depart Suburban Station approximately one hour following the last pitch. R8 Chestnut Hill West passengers should board R7 Chestnut Hill East train service. Extra Market-Frankford Line service will also be in operation for fans who wish to make connections with the Broad Street Line.
More regular later night service would be nice, too, though of course the unpredictability of baseball game ending times makes added flexibility necessary.
Still, dissatisfaction with the Bush administration and despondency over the direction the country is headed seems to be the biggest factor driving McCain's poor showing in the poll. Only 23 percent of voters now say they approve of the job that George W. Bush is doing as president, a new low for any president in the NEWSWEEK Poll.
The most important function of a vice president is to serve as a spare president. Using the spare president in the ordinary course of business is as unwise as driving on one's spare tire. Spares should be kept pristine, for when they are really needed.
But the more important point is that I probably haven't read 3 words about this race or really any of the local races in the local papers. They barely even cover congressional races. I don't know if the "local papers that actually cover local news" business model is a viable one, but it isn't clear that "local papers that don't cover much local news" is either.
I recommend a locked windowless room with a vat of vodka. I'd take that advice except I must write this sucky blog for you, dear readers.
Nonetheless, a campaign is a test of leadership. Mr Obama ran his superbly; Mr McCain’s has often looked a shambles. After eight years of George W. Bush, the steady competence of the Obama operation commands respect.
Barack Obama has opened up an eight-point lead over Republican John McCain in Virginia, and the Democrat is entering the final week of the campaign with several core advantages when it comes to turning out his supporters, according to a new Washington Post poll.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Not everyone who is reasonably interested politics is a political junkie, and nor is there any reason for them to be. But I think Obama's proven that plenty of people do actually have some interest in it.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Pennsylvania Republicans are disavowing an e-mail sent to Jewish voters that likens a vote for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama to events that led up to the Holocaust.
"Jewish Americans cannot afford to make the wrong decision on Tuesday, November 4th, 2008," the e-mail reads. "Many of our ancestors ignored the warning signs in the 1930s and 1940s and made a tragic mistake. Let's not make a similar one this year!"
A copy of the e-mail, provided by Democratic officials, says it was "Paid for by the Republican Federal Committee of PA - Victory 2008."
Sen. Barack Obama's record-breaking $150 million fundraising performance in September has for the first time prompted questions about whether presidential candidates should be permitted to collect huge sums of money through faceless credit card transactions over the Internet.
Is there any right wing blogger horseshit the Washington Post won't beg to eat? Nope!
- Concerns about anonymous donations seeping into the campaign began to surface last month, mainly on conservative blogs. Some bloggers described their own attempts to display the flaws in Obama's fundraising program, donating under such obviously phony names as Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein, and reported that the credit card transactions were permitted.
Of course, that those people were, you know, knowing breaking the law doesn't actually make it into the article. And it doesn't even occur to the reporter that there actually are probably some poor souls in the US named "Saddam Hussein."
- Guest lineup for the Sunday TV news shows: ___ ABC's "This Week" — Jack Welch, former chief executive of General Electric Co.; Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.; Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill. ___ CBS' "Face the Nation" — Robert Rubin, former Treasury secretary and adviser to Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.; Doug Holtz-Eakin, adviser to Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.; Govs. Ed Rendell, D-Pa., and Tim Pawlenty, R-Minn. ___ NBC's "Meet the Press" — McCain. ___ CNN's "Late Edition" — Sens. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., and Jon Kyl, R-Ariz.; Reps. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, D-Fla., and Heather Wilson, R-N.M. "Fox News Sunday" _ Gov. Tim Kaine, D-Va.; former Gov. Tom Ridge, R-Pa.
But we are all smart people here, so I think we can take my point already, which is that into this decidedly conservative (by any rational measure you can name) American political environment came one William F. Buckley, to whine that it’s so hard being a conservative, it’s so lonely being a conservative, everyone is so impatient with conservatives, why can’t standing athwart history yelling Stop be an actual political philosophy instead of a mere child’s tantrum - and oh, p.s., which one of you nonwhite nonmales MOVED MY CHEESE?Signed,
I am telling you, leftybeans, you have all had amnesia. Every single piece of drivel you find in The Corner, every lulzy post at Bacon o’Playdough, every Goldsteinian meltdown and Instapunditious I-just-link, I-don’t-endorse oily oozy blob of propaganda, every Confederate Yankee conspiracy theory, every Patterician investigation of IP addresses and other ridiculous internet minutiae, springs from this half-a-century-ago source.