Friday, October 03, 2008

He gets a vote, too

When you walk into your polling place sometime in the next 32 days, think about this. When you push that button or pull that lever for Obama, someone, somewhere, will be voting based on something like this, from NRO's Rich Lowry (h/t Daily Kos):
A very wise TV executive once told me that the key to TV is projecting through the screen. It's one of the keys to the success of, say, a Bill O'Reilly, who comes through the screen and grabs you by the throat. Palin too projects through the screen like crazy. I'm sure I'm not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, "Hey, I think she just winked at me." And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around the living rooms of America. This is a quality that can't be learned; it's either something you have or you don't, and man, she's got it.

Palin Scatters a few Harmless Hits

Sure, she gave her supporters a few scattered lines to cheer about. But to use a baseball metaphor, Biden came on in middle relief, shut Palin down, preserved his team’s comfortable lead, and handed Obama the ball to close out the game in the last two innings.

So what if she didn’t speak in tongues or run off the stage in tears? So what if she lit up her slumping supporters with “glittering generalities” and telegenic folksiness? To change the dynamics of this campaign, to stop the polls from moving Obama’s way, Palin needed to produce a gamechanging performance that was simply beyond her limited capacity.

Not surprisingly (for those who watched her Alaska debates) Palin exceeded the low “expectations” bar set for her by pundits and talking heads. But that wasn’t good enough. Not this year. Not in this election, the “most important election since 1932,” as Joe Biden said.

Palin’s callous nonresponse to Biden’s emotional moment, as he spoke of being a single parent under tragic circumstances, must have been jarring to many viewers. In one bizarre exchange, Palin embraced the Dick Cheney model of expanded executive powers for the vice president, demonstrably ignorant of its Constitutional implications. Biden hit it out of the park, declaring Cheney one the “most dangerous” vice presidents in history. Then he gave a succint lesson on the limited Constitutional duties of the office, and warned against the radical right wing theory of the “Unitary Executive” which is behind the Bush regime’s shredding of the Constitution.

Palin sought to reassure voters that as governor at times she has had to bow to legislative prerogatives. Which begs the question: Why raise the issue at all if not that her backwoods dictatorial executive style, such as it is, bears a disturbing resemblance to the Bush-Cheney executive power grab?

The implication In Biden's response was clear: If you like Dick Cheney, you’ll love Sarah Palin.

A CNN poll of debate viewers gave Biden the “win” by 51% to 32%. It wasn’t even close. Most important, did Palin pass the so-called “threshold” test for president?

In a word: No.

Thursday, October 02, 2008


I cannot survive another 4 years with governmental leaders who cannot produce the word nuclear. There will be beatings.

McCain gives up on Michigan

All the analyses show that if Obama holds on to Michigan and Pennsylvania, he'll be awfully tough to beat. Well, McCain has conceded one of those.

That's debatable

The bar for Caribou Barbie tonight has been so ridiculously low that the media will be slobbering over her if she doesn't wet herself and fall off the stage.

Prepare for them to slobber. This is the PERFECT debate format for a high-functioning moron, 90-second "sound bites" with no interaction. She's capable of memorizing enough crap to coast.

One bit of good news for me

Kudos to Dan Quayle. My undergraduate alma mater no longer is responsible for the most ridiculous GOP veep candidate in my voting lifetime.


The Senate bill is the House one substantively, but covered with chocolate syrup. Tax breaks, gimmes to the Wool Research Board and the makers of kids' archery toys, etc.

How can the House approve this, with an extra $150B, without looking like (and being) petulant children?

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Moron Dowd

Maureen Dowd has been spurned by the man she once loved, the man she used to write about so glowingly, even though she was once one of the alienated suitor's "people" who wined and dined with him.

She was kicked off Grampy's press plane.

And this deep thinker responds with "It was disappointing because I didn't think John McCain would ever be as dismissive of the First Amendment as Dick Cheney."


The 1st amendment means the government can't arrest you for what you've written or stop you from publishing. It DOESN'T guarantee your hack derriere a seat on a private plane. Geez. Get over yourself.

The Very Definition of Clusterfuck

I have been reading with growing trepidation that a bailout plan is growing to pass congress. The plan is going to give around 700 billion taxpayer dollars (borrowed from friendly nations like China) to the very same crooks who scammed the system to the point of collapse in the first place. In return, we will get bad debt, grossly distressed real estate and A BUSINESS TAX CUT!!!! I am at a loss to understand why my congresscritter (Rahm Emanuel for those scoring at home) is behind this plan (he's already voted for it in the defeated house version). I'd love to find out, but his house web page is down - but then again so is EVERY SINGLE HOUSE WEB PAGE. If the government can't keep its sites up and running, how the hell are they going to combat a banking collapse?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Five weeks left

This last week has been excellent for Obama in the polls, and bad for McCain in the universe.

Italicized states have trended (changed categories) towards McCain, bolded towards Obama.

McCain win: Utah, Wyoming, Oklahoma, Idaho, Tennessee, Alabama, Kentucky, Kansas, Nebraska, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alaska, South Carolina, Arizona, Texas, Georgia, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana. Total: 158 EV (+3).

McCain likely: West Virginia. Total: 5 EV (-24).

Obama likely: Colorado, Minnesota. Total: 10 EV (-18).

Obama win: DC, Vermont, Rhode Island, Hawaii, New York, Illinois, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maryland, Maine, California, Delaware, New Jersey, Iowa, Washington, New Mexico, Oregon, Michigan, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin. Total: 250 EV (+48).

Tossup: Missouri, North Carolina Nevada, Ohio, Virginia, New Hampshire, Florida, Indiana. Total: 106 EV (-36).

The net trend since last week is McCain lost 21 EV (54 over the last 2 weeks) from his column, while Obama gained 47 (52 over the last 2 weeks). Combining the "win" and "likely" for each, we'd be at 163 for McCain and 269 for Obama. That puts Obama 1 EV/state away from victory. PA and MI are still critical, but the trend was heavily in Obama's direction this week. If you include all states that are leaning one way or the other, you'd put MO, NC, and IN in McCain's column and NV, OH, FL, NH, and VA in Obama's. That would give you totals of 338 for Obama and 200 for McCain.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Thrilla in Columbia, District of

Down goes bailout! Down goes bailout!

That's one heck of a number...

From the text of the draft bailout bill:


Subsection (b) of section 3101 of title 31, United States Code, is amended by striking out the dollar limitation contained in such subsection and inserting



1) I'm sure I'm not the only one, but I'd be a lot more likely to support the bailout if W would stop telling me how awesome it will be. That makes me very very nervous.

2) Fox was helping the McCain campaign pre-spin the veep debate by saying that the deck is stacked against Palin because they'll ask a majority of foreign policy questions, which everyone knows are Biden's forte, and she'll look bad, and everyone knows that most people only care about domestic matters anyway. Umm, what? She looked as stupid answering questions about domestic matters as foreign policy, and, frankly, isn't it a good thing that Biden knows stuff?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Next up: the Wasilla Witchcraft Project

Sarah Palin’s face-off meltdown with “America’s sweetheart” Katie Couric has left the Palin-McCain camp reeling and running out of secular options. Right wing commentators are hitting the panic button as the cringe factor grows. The reset button no longer works. Each time it’s pressed, Sarah Palin’s programming comes crashing down even harder:

That Alaska has a very narrow maritime border between a foreign country, Russia, and, on our other side, the land-boundary that we have with Canada. It's funny that a comment like that was kinda made to … I don't know, you know … reporters. … As Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where do they go? It's Alaska. It's just right over the border. It is from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there, they are right next to our state.

Ouch. Conservative columnist David Brooks said, “It’s embarrassing, it’s painful to watch those things, you want to turn them off.” If Palin can’t handle Couric, how can she possibly be expected to stand up to Putin’s disembodied head?

Kathleen Parker, the latest right wing columnist to push the Palin panic button, made a plaintive appeal to Palin’s patriotism:

I've also noticed that I watch her interviews with the held breath of an anxious parent, my finger poised over the mute button in case it gets too painful. Unfortunately, it often does. My cringe reflex is exhausted.


If BS were currency, Palin could bail out Wall Street herself.


Only Palin can save McCain, her party and the country she loves. She can bow out for personal reasons, perhaps because she wants to spend more time with her newborn. No one would criticize a mother who puts her family first.

Do it for your country.

Fat chance, Kathleen. Your scenario is as likely as ... well, Brooks’s whimsical vision of Putin’s head floating above Alaska’s aurora borealis.

What to do, you ask?

There’s only ONE solution that can save Sarah Palin: First, cast away those debate prep briefing books “festooned” with NeoCon talking points too numerous to memorize. Next, summon Palin’s witch-hunting pastor, Thomas Muthee.

Back in 2005 Pastor Muthee alighted on Wasilla and conducted a “laying of hands” ritual on sister Sarah to exorcise “all forms of witchcraft” in advance of her successful run for governor.

Here's the link to "Palin's Pastor Problem."

The Palin-McCain camp shouldn’t argue with success. You never know, the evangelical vote is still up for grabs. Time for another McCain Hail Mary?

In the name of JEE-ZUHS.

Proofreading 101

Typos are a fact of life for those of us who write for a living. This one, though, is one you HAVE to catch. From the AP:
Democrats also wanted to avoid an election-year clash with Bush that would have played in his favor. They are willing to take their chances that Democrat Barrack Abeam will be elected president in November and permit increases for scores of programs squeezed by Bush each year.
How embarrassing. Here's the story, if they haven't cleaned it up yet.